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What to Keep, What to Shred

October 13, 2017
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Many of us don’t always know what to keep, throw away, or shred. And each piece of paperwork we have has a different timeline attached to it. Over the years I’ve been able to compile a master list of what to keep, what to toss, and what to shred, and I’d love to share it with you!

Keep Forever (store in a fireproof safe or bank safety deposit box)

  • Birth certificates
  • Adoption papers/guardianship arrangements
  • Social Security cards
  • Current passports
  • Marriage certificates
  • Divorce decrees
  • Death certificates for immediate family members
  • Citizenship papers
  • Titles/deeds for currently-owned properties
  • Tax returns
  • Military discharge/veteran papers
  • Diplomas

Keep for a Time

  • Pay stubs (after pay year is complete)
  • Canceled checks (7 years)
  • Tax-related receipts (7 years)
  • Bank statements (1 year)
  • Credit card statements (1 year)
  • Medical bills (1 year)

Shred Sooner than Later

  • Sales receipts (unless related to warranty)
  • Expired passports
  • Credit report
  • Vehicle registrations (as soon as the new one arrives) 

If you have items to shred, you can always bring them to one of my shredding parties! We are holding our next one at the end of this month, so come on by!