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Survey shows death is still ‘taboo’

21st May, 2014

A recent survey conducted by the Dying Matters Coalition has shown that death remains something of a ‘taboo’ subject for UK adults, with only 21% of the 2,000 people surveyed having discussed their end of life wishes.

The survey also revealed only a third of those surveyed had made a will and just 29% had let their loved ones know of their funeral wishes.

James Wallace, a solicitor specialising in Wills and Estate Planning said of the survey results: “What the survey shows us is that as a society we tend to put off making end of life decisions for as long as possible. This can be for a variety of reasons; a fear of discussing death, concerns about raising sensitive issues which it might seem easier to ignore or a general lack of awareness about the options that are available when it comes to arranging your affairs.

“Feedback from clients tells us that taking that first step of sitting down with your solicitor is nowhere near as daunting as people think and in many cases it can be hugely satisfying for clients to know that their affairs have been put in order and loved ones will be properly taken care of.”

Unfortunately, it remains the case that each year many people die without making a will which can cause all sorts of difficulties for those that are left behind. For married couples, it remains a common misconception that a surviving spouse will automatically inherit the estate of their deceased husband or wife.

In fact, where people die without making a will, their spouse is entitled to a lump sum from the estate whilst the remainder will commonly pass in part to a trust and in part to children which is often not what the family intended and can lead to disputes which could have been easily avoided by making a will.

For more information or to get expert advice on this subject, please contact James Wallace on 01244 405588 or email [email protected].

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