Re: Paperwork

For anyone who is bereaved or no longer providing care.
Clearing out the stationery cupboard (oops, nearly put stationary engine cupboard!!!!!), yesterday and came across loads of files of paperwork and a very large box of paperwork referring to Mark's accident compensation claim and tribunal paperwork for Continueing Health Care.
I started putting everything through the shredder and filled a bin bag. Then, I thought, there must be an easier way, so I rang the spinal unit and someone is meant to be calling me back today with a view to getting it all done for me.
Then I started thinking, about claims etc and every stitch of paperwork to and from solicitors, to and from doctors and hospitals going back to the year 'dot', gets copied to the receipient or their families. Has anyone ever given a thought to what to do with it all, when the time or the end comes?????
I had completely forgotten about the boxes of medical documents (copied to us) for the court cases, which we had in the cupboards. Until yesterday and the more I searched the cupboards, the more medical documents and reports I found. At one point I sat and started reading doctors reports from 1974 and even letters from doctors to Mark's mum and dad about his original accident. It was all too sad and I quickly stopped, because one of the reports indicated that the doctors then said there was no need for follow up checks after he'd 'recovered' from the motorbike accident. Because of that one mistake, he ended up with this tumour on his spinal column which nobody knew about - because they didn't do follow up checks. The negligable state in the 'early years' is just too sad and awful. I didn't read many of the letters, I soon stropped.
Anyway....
Something to be discussed?????
Exactly how do people dispose of all this??????????
Took me ages to shred all Mum's 'stuff', but it had to be done Image

BUT if you've got the space and the facilities what about having a massive bonfire - and you could use the ash as fertiliser Image
We have one of those small burners at top of garden, purely for this sort of thing. Shredding just took forever. Mind you, cousin's little girl had a hamster and they loved the shredded paper. Image
There is a place near us that will dispose of confidential material. You have to pay, but its not exorbitant and you just take a sackful round and they will burn it.
Oo ta. The spinal unit phoned me back and gave me the number of the confidential shredding company which they use for their medical documents. I might give em a ring tomorrow.
Else pile it all into the old oil drum we use for burning stuff, except it's mighty windy this week. Just in another sorting out mood, that's all. Need it doing NOW, whilst I'm still in tidying out mood.
I tip all my stuff into a large bucket and cover it with hot soapy water - seriously. My shredder had a heart attack while I was at mum's last year and after 2 hours of trying to tear it all up by hand, I decided if it was soaked through, it couldn't be deciphered.

This seems to work ok for me but I like your oil drum idea Nana..must have been very painful to read all that xx
Nana, it's a soul destroying job. My late husband ran a business so I had to keep all the business stuff for six years, for the tax man, and I've just shredded mountains of my brother's paperwork. Fortunately, he had an extra large shredder, nevertheless it still took ages, and do be careful that it doesn't overheat, and cause a fire in the house. If you try burning it, you need to scrunch it all up, or it won't burn properly, the air doesn't get between the sheets of paper. An old stick or pole stirring it up will help. It can be therapeutic if you think "It can't hurt me any more" as you burn or shred it. Take it all out of the binders first, and put it in a large box or bin, it's amazing just how long even that job takes, but it becomes more anonymous then and easier to deal with. Perhaps dealing with one cupboard a day, then you see it, burn it, and it's gone. (((HUGS)))
That could be another job for tomorrow, along with the massive weeding needed. The paperwork isn't even in binders, just loose in cardboard envelope folder thingies. The oil drum is full of sticks and twigs picked up from the lawn at the moment, so would include those as well. They were kept as kindling, but don't need them now, so may as well burn those too.
Do I have to scrunch every single piece of paper then, d'you reckon, Bowling?

It's ok. I didn't read much of it, just two or three pages from 1974, but what I did read made me sad and angry. I'd not really read the formal medical reports before, didn't really need to, but we got every single copy.
If you start the fire with some of your shredded paper, then scrunch up a handful of sheets, up to 10 at a time, so that there are air spaces, it burns quite quickly. Just keep stirring it when the fire is getting low, to get the last bits burned through. The odd bit of wood will also help of course. My family find bonfires extremely therapeutic, fortunately we have a long thin garden so our 40 gallon drum (with holes around the bottom for additional ventilation) is a long way away from our nearest neighbours. If the sons light a fire with the wind blowing towards my own house, they know they will be told off!!!
Found the company the spinal unit recommended and took everything over there a couple of weeks' ago. So hopefully, it's sorted now.