Personal financial records are a necessary part of our lives, but it's easy for clients to get overwhelmed by the volume of papers.According to the New York State Society of CPAs, the beginning of the year is an excellent time to get financial records in order. Here is some advice to help clients determine what they should keep and what they should purge.

* Permanent records. Personal papers they should safeguard include birth certificates, Social Security cards, marriage certificates, divorce decrees, insurance policies, veteran's discharge papers, wills, living wills and powers of attorney, real estate deeds and mortgages, automobile titles and important contracts. These and other permanent records that are difficult to replace should be kept indefinitely, preferably in a safe deposit box. They'll need them to re-establish their financial life in the event of a fire, theft or other disaster.

Register or login for access to this item and much more

All Accounting Today content is archived after seven days.

Community members receive:
  • All recent and archived articles
  • Conference offers and updates
  • A full menu of enewsletter options
  • Web seminars, white papers, ebooks

Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access