Last Modified: Friday, July 13, 2012 9:55 PM
When you take out a life insurance policy, is it a law that they have to give you a policy certificate within 30 days? I have no policy certificate stating who my beneficiary is.
A state Insurance Department spokeswoman said Louisiana has no statute that mandates the delivery of a policy within a certain time period.
She said that the time insurers take to forward a policy depends on what they must do as part of the underwriting process, such as acquiring medical and other records.
Insurers typically take four to eight weeks to get copies of policies to consumers, she said.
How long do you keep doctor bills you have paid? When can you throw away old doctor bills, and where can you throw them?
Recommendations on how long to retain receipts and paid bills vary widely. But most sources The Informer consulted suggested keeping them around for one to seven years.
Generally, you should hang on for a few years to any papers that confirm you paid large bills; retain for just as long any records you need for tax deductions; and always shred records you no longer need, to prevent the theft of any personal information they contain.
How long to keep various records, according to usa.gov, the federal government’s Web portal:
Bank statements — one year; longer if you need them to support tax claims.
Birth certificates, marriage licenses, passports, etc. — forever.
Credit card statements — until they’re paid; longer if you need them to support tax claims.
Records of home purchase and improvements — as long as the property is yours.
Life insurance — forever.
Auto and home insurance — for the life of the policy.
Real estate deeds — for as long as the property is yours.
Tax records — seven years from their filing dates.
Vehicle titles — for as long as the car is yours.
What is the law regarding carrying a knife? Is the law different for adults and minors?
State law prohibits the possession of “any switchblade knife, spring knife or other knife or similar instrument having a blade which may be automatically unfolded or extended from a handle by the manipulation of a button, switch, latch or similar contrivance.”
The Lake Charles city code restricts possession of knives in certain locales, based on the length of the blades. One ordinance says no one can take into “an establishment where alcoholic beverages are sold” any knife with a blade longer than 4 inches. Another bans from the City Council Chambers knives that have blades longer than 2 inches.
Additionally, state law bans the possession — by anyone — of a “dangerous weapon” on school property and at school functions. “Dangerous weapon” is defined in part as an “instrumentality, which, in the manner used, is calculated or likely to produce death or great bodily harm.”
The Informer answers questions from readers each Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. It is researched and written by Andrew Perzo, an American Press staff writer. To ask a question, call 494-4098, press 5 and leave voice mail, or email email@example.com