Wednesday, November 7, 2012

What Should I Shred At Home?

Paper shredders have many uses for a home or business. If you have various documents that need to be discarded at home, then shredding is a good option to thwart identity theft. This is a tactic by a thief that is used to find personal information. Document shredding will hinder the efforts of thieves looking to steal names, addresses, phone numbers or letters confirming these details to them use them to use your bank details to access your money.

The failure to shred sensitive documents is a risk for your identity to be stolen. The investment made in a paper shredder is good insurance to help protect yourself from identity theft. You should purchase the type of paper shredder that can cross-cut. This is the process of cutting paper is two directions.

Many types of documents can be shredded if they are not needed for tax purposes. Any document that has account numbers, birth dates, a PIN, passwords, signatures and Social Security numbers or national insurance numbers on them. You can keep yourself protected by shredding documents that include an email address and phone number. This is the best option if you are looking for a confidential shredding solution for your home.

Records that you need to keep and can be shredded will need to be determined. You will be in a bind if you have accidentally shredded a document that may be needed at a later time. Documents will need to be sorted based on the type. Any papers that are not needed are free game for document shredding.

Tax records need to be saved for at least seven years. If you have records that are older, then they need to be shredded. The IRS or regulator in your country can audit any return three years after they were submitted. Copies that you have made for any documents can be shredded as long as the original is being stored.

Pay stubs need to be kept for at least one year. These should be matched with a W2 form. You can then shred any older documents as they are not needed and are a tool for identify thieves.

Bank statements also need to be kept for at least one year. The only exception is for documents used to help prepare your tax return. These documents need to be kept with your tax information. You can then commence confidential shredding for paperwork that needs to be destroyed.

Shredding credit card statements is a good idea if they are older than 45 days. However, you may need to save a few during the year if you need a record of deductions of your tax return. They are a proof of purchase if you are ever audited. All other statements you do not need can be shredded.

It's never fun to tidy up but you feel much better at the end. So, go through all of your paperwork and organize what to save and what you can shred. Various types of shredders can be found at many retailers or on many online sites.

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