Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Organizing bills, applications, misc. paperwork

Ryann emailed me with this request: "One thing I'd love to see on your blog is how you keep all the medical/financial paperwork organized. I have found myself with boxes and boxes of bills, statements, benefit coverages, doctor's office receipts, handouts about vaccinations, medications, and the like."

I feel your pain! Seems like you start collecting paperwork from your first day in the hospital and it just... keeps... coming.

My method of organization is not very high-tech, but here it is. The drawer pictured above is the bottom drawer of our computer desk. It never did hold those hanging files particularly well (it seems to be slightly too wide), so I bought a whole slew of inexpensive folders. I used a black Sharpie marker to label them as shown below:

Inside, I file away informational paperwork, forms, etc. Because the fronts are clearly labeled, I can usually find what I'm looking for very quickly. The pockets keep the papers from flying around everywhere and enable me to take the file with me to appointments without things sliding out (as is prone to happen with file folders).

These are the categories you will find in my drawer:
  • Complete Insurance Claims
  • Apria/Pulmonary
  • Adolescent Psych/Neurology
  • EOB Aetna (our old insurance company)
  • EOB Anthem (our current insurance)
  • Developmental Peds.
  • Dr. C. (my doctor- because sometimes I need a doctor too!)
  • Paystubs/Tax Docs. (we have three of these- 2005, 2006, & 2007)
  • Social Security
  • Dr Z. (our pediatrician)
  • Medicaid/Children's Special Health Care Services (supplementary insurance)
  • Pending/Due Bills
  • A- Preschool & Therapy, Age 3+
  • First Steps
  • To Lock In SDB (safe deposit box)- we seem to get a lot of things that need to be locked up in the months following the birth of a child- birth certificate, soc. sec. card, savings bonds, etc... happily, I can report that this folder is empty which means I'm doing my job and getting to the bank!
Your needs will vary, of course, but this break-down works for us. Periodically, I grab a folder or two while my hubby and I watch TV and I pare down, shredding anything that's no longer necessary. Because it is all separated, this task seems manageable.

The best kind of organizational system is one you can keep up with. This method may not work for everyone, but it has helped keep me sane! It works for me! For more fun tips, visit Rocks in my Dryer!

What are your tips for keeping tabs on all those pieces of paperwork?


Ryann said...

Can't thank you enough for this post. Now I wish I could get you to come over to sort through the stacks with me...

JessieLeigh said...

I'd be happy to sort! I've spent many an hour surrounded by stacks. If only you lived a tad closer...

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing a great orginzational idea!