When people lose their wallets, the first inclination they usually have is to freak out. That being said, the first order of business is to take a deep breath. Don’t take more than one, however, because it is time to take action. Here is a checklist of things to do for when your wallet is lost or stolen.
Do you have a key finder? These nifty devices come in all different designs, and they even fit inside wallets like credit cards. If you don’t have one of these items, now is a good time to consider buying one to help you in case this happens again. You don’t want to buy one now, however, because it’s time to find your lost wallet.
If you are certain that your wallet was stolen, your first order of business is to put a stop on your cards, debit and credit. If you are certain you have just lost your wallet, you might begin by retracing your steps. Yet even if you are sure that your wallet is just lost, you might still want to log in to your banking app and pause your cards. Each bank and credit card company handles this a little differently, but they are making it more and more convenient for consumers to do this.
When you pause your cards, it doesn’t mean that you cancel them and have to order new ones. You are simply pausing them, and that comes in handy for situations such as these. If you have had your wallet stolen, however, you are going to cancel your cards. You likely won’t get them back anyway, and you’re going to need the bank and credit card companies to issue you new ones.
Even if you’re just pausing your cards because your wallet is lost, you might find that you have to speak with some of the financial institutions that have issued you cards. Take the time to do it because it’s important. You can explain to them what has happened, and they will do what they need to do accordingly.
Consumers usually want to jump the gun when it comes to cancelling cards based on losing a wallet. That’s understandable, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. That’s why it’s so good that many financial institutions now give you the ability to pause your cards while you search for your lost wallet.
Let’s roll with the fact for a moment that your wallet may have been stolen. When that happens, you also need to go ahead and file a police report. When a crime has occurred, it’s always important to have a paper trail. The police report and the time you take to file on might not get you your wallet back, true. But it will serve to come in handy in case the situation were to develop even further.
In both scenarios, with either a lost or stolen wallet, you are going to put stops on your cards. Therefore, there shouldn’t be any transactions that go through based on someone else using your card. Yet in case it does happen, you will be monitoring the transaction history and speaking with the banks. If your wallet was stolen, you will have also added the extra step of filing a police report.
You’re also going to want to call and stop by the DMV. You want to notify them that your license was lost or stolen, and you want to get the ball rolling on getting a new one issued to you. You can’t be out there driving with a license on you. You can certain explain to the cops what has happened, but they are going to be less than sympathetic. A rule is a rule is a rule.
Do you also need to contact your health insurance provider? If you also were keeping your health insurance card in your wallet, then you’re going to need to do that for sure. Consider any other items that you may have been keeping in your wallet so that you know what all needs to be replaced, including getting a new social security card. Then you can make preparations to either continue searching for your wallet or buy a new one.
While you may feel embarrassed about having lost your wallet, it happens to everyone at some point in time. There are all kinds of different situations that come up, and then there are those times when people have their wallets stolen, too. Perhaps you have even had to deal with this situation before. Don’t get caught up in the fact that you’re embarrassed; instead, take the steps mentioned and start working towards preventing this from happening again.
Consider whether you were keeping too many valuables in your wallet. Your wallet is always on your person, so you want to be careful about what to keep with you. That’s why in the days of cash, people were instructed not to carry so much on them. They could lose it, or people can take notice and try to steal the cash.
You want to protect your wallet. The idea mentioned earlier about the key finder, or wallet finder in this case, can be a great idea. For a small investment, you would have in your possession the technology to go wallet hunting without just simply retracing your steps. You would have a metal detector of sorts, or a GPS device, ready to help you find your lost wallet.
And in the event your wallet is stolen, don’t fail to forget to file that police report. You never know when a situation is going to develop further. You hope it doesn’t, but if it does, you will want to have gotten the ball rolling on the paper trail.
Now you know what steps to take, in order, when your wallet is lost or stolen. Remember, that deep breath is the first step. It’s going to be okay. It happens to everyone. Hopefully, you find your wallet in the next few minutes, and everything is back to normal. Regardless, everything will be back to normal soon enough.