Paper vs. Digital for Your Family Story

One of the most frequent questions we get from clients and members alike is

“Why in the world aren’t you designing for the cloud?”

For us, the answer is simple… when it comes to documents that have real, tangible, family-critical importance like a Plan Your Story workbook, a hard copy is the ONLY solution.

You see, for important, permanent documents, like your Social Security card and birth certificate, there's no question about preserving it in its original form. Setting up an 'in-case-of-emergency binder', there are simply some essential, hard-to-replace documents that must be kept in a secure physical location. Even more important, hard copies are definitely required if a document includes original or notarized signatures.

Paper originals you should always keep:

  • Plan Your Story Workbook

  • Advance Directives (such as the 5-Wishes included in your workbook)

  • Social Security cards

  • Birth certificates

  • Passports

  • Marriage Licenses

  • Death certificates

  • Wills, trusts, and other estate documents

  • Car titles

  • Business licenses

  • Life insurance policies

Digital purists might prefer scanning everything and tossing the paper to reduce clutter, but too many experiences with failed backups - CDs, DVDs, dead hard drives, lost cloud passwords - have made us feel more comfortable with a paper copy.

What about legal and financial documents? Confidentiality and security are particularly important issues when it comes to legal and financial documents – key components of your Story. Storing sensitive information electronically does open up the possibility that documents could be hacked and compromised. A detailed or complicated document, like your Story, is often easier to read, pass around and make notes on if it’s printed. A printed document can sometimes be more easily shared if disseminating information to a large group of people at the same time. You family is the perfect example here.

If your aging loved ones live in a rural or remote location where Internet access is sketchy, having hard copies is simply smart planning.

Failing to properly back up electronic documents can also be disastrous. We’ve had a few clients who had computers go down and they had no backup. It cost them months’ worth of important legal and financial conversations and documents.

Both digital and hard copies have their place. If you’re planning on scanning your Story for digital safekeeping, store your backup copy off site and in the cloud. The key is implementing a system that ensures you have the right document in hand when your family needs it.

We believe, when it comes to a tool to save your family time and energy in times of crisis, the Plan Your Story Family workbook is the ONLY answer.

#Tools #PlanYourStory

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Reno, Nevada 89504


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