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Take steps to be financially ready before disaster strikes

Brenda Procter, M.S., State Specialist & Instructor, Personal Financial Planning, University of Missouri Extension

A disaster is any sudden or unexpected misfortune. It could be a call to war, the loss of a family member, a natural disaster that strikes everyone in the community or any other sudden event. No family is immune to disaster.

During a time of disaster, it is difficult enough to deal with the emotional effects, much less any financial effect — like a sudden loss of income or unavoidable increase in expenses. A family in crisis generally needs more resources to get through. That is why it is important to be prepared in case a financial disaster strikes.

You can prepare by taking stock of the resources you already have, and thinking about whether you are adequately covered in terms of property and casualty insurance. What if you became disabled or lost your job? Would you have savings or other personal resources to tap into? Would you know how to find public resources you might qualify for? Social services exist for you. They are meant for victims of disaster or other misfortunes.

The following articles have information about important benefits for families, tax implications of property and job loss, tools to assist with personal and family financial planning, and information about possible tax credits for your family.

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Last update: Tuesday, September 13, 2016