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What You Could Put in Your Safe Deposit Box

What You Could Put in Your Safe Deposit Box

By Lane V. Erickson, Idaho Estate Planning Attorney

In an earlier article we spent some time talking about the things that you should NOT put in a safe deposit box. These things included your original estate planning documents, cash, other uninsured valuable items, and items that you might need in case of an emergency. To learn more about the things that you should not put in your safe deposit box we encourage you to read our other article.

The purpose of this article is to provide you with a list of the things that you could put in your safe deposit box. In other words, we’ll provide you with a list of things that using a safe deposit box for would be a good idea.

At the Racine law office, we have assisted clients through all aspects of estate planning and probate for more than 70 years. Our team of premier Idaho probate attorneys understand all these areas of the law including using safe deposit boxes. Our experienced team includes partners Randy Budge and Lane Erickson and attorneys Nate Palmer and Dave Bagley. Each attorney on our team has earned the highest rankings and reviews possible from past clients and from several legal rating services including Justia, Martindale & Hubbell, and AVVO. Our team of attorneys have the expertise and knowledge to benefit each of our clients specifically and individually with their estate plan and probate needs.

It’s also important that we encourage you to download and review our free Estate Planning Questionnaire. This document has helped thousands of people organize the information they need to complete their own plan that will be customized to fit and work for them, their family members, and their loved ones. We also offer a free 30-minute consultation to review the questionnaire and to answer any estate planning related questions you have. We encourage you to call us today to schedule your free consultation.

So, what are the sorts of things that you could and should put in your safe deposit box? Here is a specific list.

Social Security Cards and Other Legal Documents

Your social security card and other valuable legal documents such as birth certificates, death certificates, marriage certificates and divorce decrees and so forth. These are items that you definitely want to keep safe and that have no real intrinsic value to anyone else. In other words, if the worst-case scenario happened and the bank was robbed, the robbers would look into your safe deposit box and only see certificates and cards that have no real value to them.

Additionally, unlike a passport or a durable power of attorney, these types of legal documents are rarely needed in any kind of an emergency. In other words, even if you needed these documents right away, you could usually wait until the bank is open again to be able to retrieve them.


In addition to the legal documents listed above, some collectibles may be ideal for storing in your safe deposit box. For example, these could include valuable jewelry, a stamp collection, some rare coins that you may have, or a baseball card collection, BUT only if these items are already properly insured.

As we mentioned in our previous article, the FDIC insurance that most banks enjoy receiving from the Federal government does not cover the items that are stored in your safe deposit box. This is true even if you have actual money like cash that would normally be insured by a bank if it was in a checking or savings account.

So, collectibles are a yes, so long as they are properly insured.

Insurance Inventory

This brings us to the next category of items that you should keep in a safe deposit box which would be your insurance inventory. In other words, if for example you have expensive mountain bikes, and photography equipment, and a rare coin collection, and any other items that would have more than trivial value that are insured by your homeowner’s insurance or some other separate insurance policy, you will want to keep a list and possibly photographs of these items. Your safe deposit box is an ideal place to keep these types of things.

By having this insurance inventory list, if you have any types of a loss due to a fire or theft or something else happening, you have a very descriptive list of the items that were insured. You could even show photographs of those items and you will then receive the insurance payout to cover these lost items.

Lists and Information About Your Digital Assets

The final thing that we would include as a strong positive for being placed in your safe deposit box is a list of information about your digital assets. Consider for a moment that you were to die today. Would your family know how to access your email accounts, online banking accounts, PayPal accounts, Venmo accounts, Instagram Facebook and any other type or kind of social media accounts?

Having a list of this digital information in your safe deposit box is perfect. The reason for this is that your family will likely not need access to these things immediately but over time they will. After your passing, it may take several days or even weeks before your family accesses your safe deposit box to gather this information.

There are things that you should not and things that you could and should place in your safe deposit box. Our hope is that by reading this article and our previous article you will have a better understanding of how a safe deposit box can work to protect your property and help your family and loved ones after you pass away. If you have questions or concerns, we encourage you to contact us. We have helped numerous clients in dealing with these kinds of issues and we are confident that we can help you too!

Enlist an Idaho Estate Planning Attorney to Help You

Our team of Idaho lawyers can help you with any of your estate planning or probate needs. Whether you are seeking to create or review an estate plan for yourself or would like to help a loved one, we are available to discuss your options and answer your questions at an initial free 30-minute consultation. Call us toll free at 877-232-6101 or 208-232-6101 for a free consultation. You can also email us directly at or stop by our office at 201 East Center Street, Pocatello, Idaho 83201. We will answer your questions and help you solve your Idaho Estate Planning problems.

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