insurance

Preparing for Family Emergency Checklist

Catastrophic accidents, sudden unemployment, and mandatory court dates can befall anyone, this is just life. Preparing for these dramatic, albeit unlikely, events can be difficult to do when there’s always immediate expenses and errands to bear, but doing so can be the difference between chaos and calm, life or death.

Families just starting out are particularly at-risk for lacking the means to manage an emergency, due to a lack of understanding on where to begin.

Here’s a brief rundown of the most important components of family emergency preparedness.

Insurance

Families have participated in insurance programs going back to Ancient Persia. They remain a practical and wise investment.

Health insurance first and foremost. The majority of working Americans and their families are covered by an employer’s policy, while the rest of us are mandated to have health insurance by the Affordable Care Act. Those caught in the gray area, not covered by an employer or a subsidized plan, must pay a heavy price.

Homeowners and auto insurance are other absolutes. If you have a mortgage then you most likely are required to have the former, and every vehicle on the road is required by law to be covered by the latter.

Life insurance is the big one most people don’t think about, mostly because they don’t want to think about it, and because it’s not required by law. Despite that, ensuring security in the event an earner meets an untimely end is one of the most responsible investments families can make.

Legal

Nobody needs to run out and hire a handful of lawyers on retainer, however it’s just a good idea to have a few names and numbers of reliable, dependable law professionals in mind, in case they’re needed – you never know.

Find an affordable criminal defense attorney, not the guy or gal with the catchiest commercial, but preferably the one a professional you trust has recommended. I know, you’re an honest, law-abiding citizen, and so is everyone else in the house, but again, you never know.

Every family should be familiar with a reputable personal injury lawyer in their city, especially if an earner is involved in physically demanding work. A personal injury lawyer can explain the intricacies of legal actions following a serious injury, including spinal-cord, brain, and wrongful death lawsuits.

Tax lawyers are also worth having around in times of trouble.

Savings

Keeping emergency cash in the house is smart – to a point; that point is probably around $500-1000. These days few situations demand on-the-spot large sums of currency.

Experts suggest families keep a minimum of nine months to a year’s worth of income in a savings account for emergencies, in case of unemployment. Just about anyone reading that is probably laughing right now, but aspiring to that figure is absolutely fundamental to good family emergency preparedness. If families aren’t able to swing sizable savings then they ought to at least try and have several thousand dollars of available credit in case of emergency.

Preparing for disasters and misery which may never come isn’t easy when money and resources are tight, yet a little security and peace of mind goes a long way in the unlikely, albeit unfortunate, event something terrible happens to a family member. Families, new ones especially, are almost always in need of some better emergency preparedness.

There’s no better time than today when it comes to preparing for tomorrow.

Photo credit – Pictures of Money on Flickr

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