Building a PCS Binder

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Anytime you move, it helps to be organized. When you move once a year, it is essential. Living the Army life, I knew it would come with its fair share of moving. For us, though, it has meant 4 moves in under 4 years and I think by now I’ve gotten pretty good at it. The most important part of my moving process is a PCS Binder, so today I thought it would be fun to give you a peak into ours. In this binder, I keep all our personal documents, moving information, orders, reservations, medical records, insurance documents, and anything else that would cause a lot of problems if it gets lost in the move.

Here is my layout:

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Zipper Pouch: I throw all of our receipts in here from food, gas, car rentals etc. to be claimed for reimbursement later. (TIP: it’s always better to over collect receipts than miss out on reimbursement money) Also, throw in a pen and a permanent marker. You’ll need it.

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Contacts List: This has all the major contact numbers of both our losing and gaining duty station.

Dividers with Folders: I use a set with 5 dividers. I like having the folders so I can easily throw things in the binder if I’m in a hurry and don’t have time to put something in its designated spot right away.

Page protectors: These are great because you never have to hole punch anything, and of course they keep your documents protected.

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Card Protector: I used one of these card protectors for our social security cards, insurance cards, extra passport photos, and whatever other small things I want to keep track of.

My binder is divided into 5 sections:

Personal Records:

  • birth certificates
  • marriage license
  • social security cards
  • passport copies
  • most recent¬†LES
  • insurance policies
  • car titles

Housing:

  • new housing application
  • old housing clearance
  • bill termination notices and contact information
  • inventory of household goods

In Transit:

  • documents/forms from movers
  • clearing paperwork
  • leave forms
  • hotel reservations
  • flight reservations

Medical:

  • shot records
  • medical records
  • DEERS/TRICARE enrollment forms
  • EFMP screenings
  • Addison‚Äôs CYSS paperwork

Orders & POAs:

  • 10 copies of orders (every office you visit wants one)
  • current POAs (powers of attorney)

I like having a general POA and specific ones for DEERS/TRICARE and housing so I can handle all our enrollment stuff at the new duty station while my husband is trying to inprocess.

I know this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to a PCS but, in my opinion, it is the most important. I hope this glance into our binder was helpful to anyone out there getting ready to embark on a PCS journey!

(Original article by Tiffany Wheeler on http://arillablog.com/2014/02/20/building-a-pcs-binder/ )

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