lost my wallet. what do I need to do?
March 16, 2014 10:00 AM   Subscribe

I lost my wallet. Other than canceling cards, what do I need to do?

I lost my wallet in a major city while there for the weekend. It had my license, credit card, atm card, AAA card, health insurance card, and a card with some semi-personal health information, plus cash and a metro card. I can't think of anything else. I've already cancelled the atm and credit cards, but what else do I need to do? I live about three hours away in a different state but did live in this city a few years ago. Do I need to be concerned about identity theft, and if so, what do I do? I searched, but didn't see this question, to my surprise!
posted by john_snow to Grab Bag (8 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
If you have a regular doctor, notify his/her office and your insurance company. Notify AAA, too. People have been known to get ridiculous amounts of information with an account number and a little social engineering.

ABC also says file a police report. It can be done over the phone in most places and if never hurts to have a paper trail if there is a problem down the road.

They also say to call the three major credit bureaus and put a fraud alert on your file. And in a few months, get your free credit reports from them to make sure everything is legit.

I'm sorry this happened. It's such a hassle.
posted by Beti at 10:08 AM on March 16, 2014 [2 favorites]

If someone tries to rip off your identity and you need to challenge it in the future, it can help if you've filed a police report. Call a non-emergency number, fill out a report and keep the case number in your records. Super common issue, they'll be familiar with what to do. You can even do it online in some places.

You can also put a security freeze on your credit. I would think it's somewhat unlikely that someone would try to apply for credit in your name, but the lock is easy and free. The only concern there is if you're about to apply for credit, it can be annoying to get around the freeze you've enacted.

Do check your reports in a few months for anything anomalous.

Otherwise, do you have another form of ID like a passport, or all the required documents to get your drivers license reissued? That can take a few days.
posted by fontophilic at 10:19 AM on March 16, 2014

I do have a passport, so I'm not id-less at least. Sounds like a fun afternoon ahead of me, sigh. Can I drive before my new license comes?

Thank you both!
posted by john_snow at 10:29 AM on March 16, 2014

That depends on your state, but most states have a law saying that since your license is not revoked or invalid (it's just the piece of plastic is gone) you have 48 hours to prove you have a license should you be pulled over for a traffic stop.

Sorry this sucks.
posted by fontophilic at 10:33 AM on March 16, 2014

Oh, and that again, that police report number can be used to back up your claim that your license is missing/stolen.
posted by fontophilic at 10:33 AM on March 16, 2014

When you call in your police report, ask him/her about driving without your license. And get the officer's name and ID number. In fact, keep a date/time/name log of all your calls and actions to remedy this.
posted by Beti at 10:45 AM on March 16, 2014

When you get a new wallet and fill it up, make a photocopy of every card in it. Then next time this happens, it'll be easier to know what needs replacing. I'm sorry you had to go through this, it's no fun at all!
posted by vasi at 10:48 AM on March 16, 2014

well, I actually can't file a police report....I am home already, my local police say they can't take the report because it's not their jurisdiction, and the NYC police can't take a report on the phone or online, it must be in person. I will put the freeze on my credit tonight, though.

Thank you everyone, this was super helpful. I'm marking you all as best answers because they were all valuable.
posted by john_snow at 2:39 PM on March 16, 2014

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