Safeguard Your Wallet from Wild Woes: Your 2023 Crash-Course in Emergency Preparedness
Picture this: It’s a breezy Tuesday. Your coffee’s hot, the morning news is upbeat, and bam! – out of the blue, you’re smack dab in the middle of a disaster. The gods of chaos have spoken. Now, what about all your paperwork, your financial lifeblood? Are they lying around, a messy jigsaw puzzle of papers? Or are they safe and sound, stashed in your digital den?
See, that’s where your trusty Emergency Preparedness Plan hops in, like a financial superhero. It’s a plan that ensures all your precious records and vital paperwork are safe, even when Mother Nature decides to throw a tantrum. Let’s walk you through it, folks.
Your Annual Financial Check-up
Life changes faster than a chameleon’s color palette, and so do your personal and business situations. You wouldn’t want your Emergency Preparedness Plan to be a dinosaur in a digital era, would you? So, revamp it annually! If you’re staring at this like a deer in the headlights, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Ready.gov website is a sweet place to start. It’s a veritable candy store of resources and checklists to aid you.
Your Digital Armor
First off, you gotta make your documents disaster-proof. Where do you start? With your vital docs, of course. Scan and save everything – your bank statements, tax returns, insurance policies – either in a fancy USB flash drive or up in the cloud. The point is to keep them as safe as a cat in a tree.
Lights, Camera, Document!
Another handy tip is to snap pics or make videos of your valuables, like a paparazzi on a mission. That way, if disaster plays its nasty hand, you’ve got a visual inventory for your insurance and tax benefits. Need a template? IRS.gov has got you covered with a handy-dandy disaster loss workbook.
The IRS Lifeline
During these turbulent times, you’re not alone! IRS.gov provides information on Disaster Assistance and Emergency Relief for both Individuals and Businesses. Check out Publication 547, Casualties, Disasters, and Thefts to get a better grip on what’s in store for you.
Are you living in a federally declared disaster area? Fret not! Go to Around the Nation on IRS.gov, click on your state, and voila! All the disaster tax relief options for your county are laid bare. You’ll get automatic filing and payment postponements for most of your due tax returns, without even needing to nudge the IRS.
Have disaster-related questions burning a hole in your pocket? Give the IRS Special Services Hotline a ring at 866-562-5227 to chat with an IRS guru trained for disaster issues.
For more goodies, check out Publication 584-B, Business Casualty, Disaster, and Theft Loss Workbook.
So there you have it, folks! Don’t be caught off guard. Build your Emergency Preparedness Plan today and let it be your financial Batman against unforeseen calamities!
Source: Tax Tip 2023-69, IRS
***Disclaimer: This communication is not intended as tax advice, and no tax accountant -client relationship results**