Recent events have shown Oregonians the importance of emergency planning. If you’re healthy and safe now, that’s good – but it doesn’t mean it’s time to relax. Another emergency will come, and you should take steps now to prepare for it.

Develop an Emergency Plan

Do you know what you would do if you had to evacuate because of a fire or other emergency? Where would you go and how would you get there? What would you bring? How would you stay in contact with your family? How would you care for your pets?

If you don’t know the answers to the questions, you need to get your emergency plan together. Ready.gov has numerous resources to help:

Prepare Your Finances

Emergencies can be a matter of life and death, but they can also be expensive. Take steps to make sure you have the financial resources you need to get through an emergency and then recover.

  • Set aside money in an emergency fund.
  • Purchase sufficient insurance coverage, including health, home, auto and life coverage.

Get Your Estate Plan Ready

You don’t want the worst to happen – but if it does, you want to be ready. A solid estate plan can help you face whatever comes next.

  • Create your estate plan, which may include a will, a trust and other key estate planning documents. An estate planning attorney can help you determine which estate planning tools you need.
  • Check your beneficiary designations and make sure that your selections are consistent with your wishes.
  • Don’t forget about incapacity planning. An advance directive can ensure that your wishes for medical care are carried out even if you are unable to advocate for yourself.
  • Communicate your estate plan with your family. This can help avoid surprises and conflicts.
  • Keep your estate planning documents in a place that is both safe and easy for others to find if needed. For example, you might store your estate planning documents in a fire safe in your home along with other essential documents. Give the combination or an extra key to relatives and tell them where to find the safe in case they need to access these documents.

Need to establish or update your estate plan? Contact Skinner Law for assistance!