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Recent study finds that only 10% of Brits have planned for death

A study carried out by the Sue Ryder Charity has revealed that 90% of people have not planned for their death and 68% have not written a Will. We take a look at the implications of passing without plans.

How would you spend your last day on earth?

Planning for Death

The Sue Ryder Charity, which offers people in need compassion and expert care across the UK and internationally, are campaigning to get people talking about ‘the D word’. As part of their campaign to encourage later life planning, they asked 2,002 people across the UK how they would spend their last day on earth.

Whilst almost 9 in 10 people (87%) knew what their last meal on earth would be, 68% have not written a Will and less than 10% have planned for their own funeral. Not only that, it was found that 67% of those who took part in the survey did not realise they could plan where they wish to die.

Overall, only 10% of people surveyed had begun or completed planning for their death.

Why is it important to plan for death?

There are many reasons it’s important to plan for your own passing. Here are just some of them:

  • You control your estate

If you live in England or Wales, you are free to write a will that leaves your estate to whoever you wish. If you don’t leave a will, the intestacy rules will govern how your estate is distributed. Making a will allows you to choose who manages your estate, ensuring that your estate is managed in the way you would want.

  • It makes financial sense

Dying without a will may leave your loved ones with little control over your assets, and may potentially leave them open to costly legal challenges and delays in sorting out the estate. There are also tax planning advantages, and with legal advice, wills can be structured to take advantage of any tax planning opportunities or inheritance tax reliefs.

  • You can plan your own funeral

While not legally binding, if you have specific preferences regarding your funeral, your wishes can be included in your will. A funeral plan also allows you to pay in advance for your own (or someone else’s) funeral.

See also

What to do after someone dies: a checklist​

10 reasons why you shouldn't delay making a will

Cohabiting partners: why not making a will is still risky

Should under-20s write a will?

Find out more

Sue Ryder

Image: Getty Images