legal documentsDo you have a shoebox tucked under your bed that stores all your highly important and legal documents? This may seem like a good idea – because they are together and seemingly organised – but keeping them stored this way is actually not very safe.

Even in this digital age, where everything is online, many legal documents cannot be stored here, they also require a physical copy. However this opens them up to physical damage such as fire or flooding.

The problem is, that the original version of such documents are the only legally binding versions as they have your original signature. This means that if they are to be damaged or lost then they will be rendered invalid. Likewise, if they fall into the wrong hands this could have serious implications, including highly confidential and personal information being leaked.

Therefore it is important to choose an extremely safe place to keep these, so here are five of the safest, for those all-important legal documents.

1. Document storage

One of the safest places to store your documents that also ensures they are easily accessible when you need it, is in storage. Places such as Kelly’s Document Storage will ensure your documents are protected by the most up-to-date systems. Access is controlled by secure online management, which also allows the owner the ability to instantly gain access to electronic copies anywhere in the world.

2. A home safe

If you want to keep your documents at home where you can see them, then invest in a home safe. But first, ensure you have the following things in place: check that if your safe requires a key that it is well hidden and if it uses a code it is memorable one but not one that is easy to guess. The safe itself should be both fireproof and waterproof, as hidden away as possible and securely fitted to ensure it cannot be simply taken out of your home to crack open at the thief’s leisure.

3. Filing cabinet

A filing cabinet can also work as a safe way of keeping important documents at home organised and secure. As with the safe, make sure it is always locked and the key is kept on your person or somewhere hidden but memorable. Again it is important for it to be waterproof and fireproof, to protect your important documents from being destroyed, should anything happen to your home.

4. Leave them with your solicitor

You could leave the original copy with your solicitor; this is a good idea because if you require the document you will more than likely also require them. With your solicitor, you can feel safe in the knowledge that your important documents are being looked after and all in one place together. You can also instruct them who has access to your files should something happen to you.

5. Safety deposit box

These are secured containers held within a larger safe or bank vault, which can be used to store everything from jewels to your legal documents. There are rigorous identity procedures before allowing access to the box in some places, that could include swiping an identity card, photo check, fingerprint scan followed by passing through an airlock before entering an explosive-proof strongroom and opening your box with a key. Seems a little Mission Impossible, right? But for some it’s the safest way of keeping valuables locked up tight.