Dying Matters Survey: Britons ‘Failing To Make Plans For Future’

Study Reveals Only A Fifth Of People Discuss Wishes With Loved Ones

12.05.2014

Around 80 per cent of people in the UK have not discussed how they would like their affairs to be handled when they die with loved ones, new research from the Dying Matters Coalition has revealed.

The poll by the group of care organisations found that just 21 per cent of people have discussed end of life wishes, while only a third had written a will or informed their family or relatives of their plans in relation to the funeral.

It was also revealed that four-fifths of those surveyed believe people are uncomfortable with discussing death, while more than a half of respondents also said they had not made their partner aware of their wishes in the event of their passing.

Claire Henry, chief executive of the Dying Matters Coalition, said: “Dying is one of life's few certainties, but many of us appear to be avoiding discussing it or in denial altogether. Talking more openly about dying and planning ahead is in everyone's interests."

The poll was released as part of the fifth annual Dying Matters Awareness Week, which is taking place from today (May 12th).

Expert Opinion
This research has put an incredibly important issue in the spotlight – one which we see the consequences of in many of the cases that we are involved in.

"The only way people can ensure that their friends and family know how they would like their estate to be handled in the event of their death is to both put provisions in place outlining wishes and also to sit down with loved ones to discuss the reasons behind such plans.

"This will mean that there is no doubt in the minds of friends and family regarding how such matters should be dealt with and, ultimately, should prevent them from launching costly and emotional draining legal battles in relation to the estate.

"It is interesting to see this research also reflect our own study, by highlighting that around six in ten people do not have a will in place. It is vital that people get such documents in place to ensure that their affairs are handled how they would like them to be."
Paula Myers, Partner