• Nearly half of UK adults (45%) have not made any provisions in the event of their death
  • One in ten (8%) are relying on family and friends to foot the bill
  • 42% of people who have dealt with the affairs of a deceased loved one say that financial worry added to their grief

A new study from British Seniors Insurance Agency today reveals that many UK adults are failing to prepare adequately for the financial implications associated with their death. The research shows that 23 million Britons, (45%) of the population, have made absolutely no provisions at all, and even in the older population, a third of over 50s (31%) have no financial provisions in place.

Equally concerning is that only a third (31%) of UK adults have a will in place. Amongst the over 50’s this proportion is higher but still worrying with less than half (48%) saying that they currently have a will in place.

In order to pay for their funeral and manage their estate upon death less than a third (30%) of UK residents hold savings which could be used in the event of their death.  A meagre one in five (22%) of the population has a life insurance policy that would be used to cover the cost with only a quarter (26%) of over 50’s saying that they have life cover in place to cover it. One in ten (8%) openly admit that they will probably have to rely on friends and relatives to foot the bill of their funeral after they have gone. And a substantial 19% of people don’t know who will foot the bill.

Those best prepared for their death are in the North East where six in ten (62%) have made arrangements to cover the cost of their death. Across the UK, the East Midlands comes top as the region with the highest proportion (51%) of adults who do not have plans in place for their death.


UK Region

Percentage who have not made provisions in the event of their death

East Midlands


Yorks & Humberside, Wales, Northern Ireland


West Midlands


North West, London


East of England, South East, South West




North East


Source: Opinium Research data January 2015 15th – 18th January 2016


Shouldering the burden

With nearly one in five (19%) UK adults saying that they are not sure how the cost of their death will be handled, it seems that many are failing to prepare adequately for the financial implications of their death, meaning that the burden will more than likely fall on friends and family to cover costs.   This trend is worrying as loved ones are being set up to face financially straining circumstances at what is already a very difficult and emotional time. Two fifths (42%) of those who have managed the affairs of a loved one, said that financial worry added to their grief and over half (58%) agreed that the process had a direct effect on their emotional wellbeing. Both of these figures are higher amongst 18-34 year olds (59% and 62% respectively) indicating that it is often the younger generation who have to shoulder the burden of unexpected costs and who feel emotional strain the most.

The emotional strain on those left behind is worryingly all too clear with more than a quarter (27%) of UK adults who had to manage the affairs of a loved one saying that they lost sleep as a result of managing the process. More concerning still is that one in five (22%) admitted to suffering from stress and 19% had to take time off work.


Dave Sutherland, Managing Director of Neilson Financial Services commented: “Our research reveals the worrying scale of just how many UK adults are failing to get their financial affairs in order and put provisions in place for their death. The cost of overlooking these matters is clear with the family members and loved ones left behind put under a tremendous amount of pressure. At what is already a difficult time many people are finding that their grief is greatly exacerbated by the fact that they have to cover the costs associated with a death. These strains are clearly evident in the numbers of people who say that they have suffered from stress or loss of sleep.”

“At British Seniors Insurance Agency we offer great value and fully flexible Over 50s life cover – and with our new Lifetime Payback Guarantee® we are setting a new standard in the market by ensuring that our customers get full value for their hard-earned cash as the lump sum their loved ones receive will never be less than the amount they have paid in. We want to encourage people to make sure that they have some form of life insurance or cover in place to provide peace of mind that when the inevitable happens they’ve got it covered for their loved ones.’’



For more information please contact:

Annabel Rivero                                               


020 7294 3610



Notes to Editors

Research carried out by Opinium Research between 15th to 18th January 2016.

  1. 907 respondents said they have not made any plans in the event of their death 907 / 2006 * 50,909,000 = 23,018,177 or 23 million


Product features:

The key product features of British Seniors Life Insurance Over 50s Life Insurance with the Lifetime Payback Guarantee® are:

  • Loved ones will receive the cover amount or the total valid premiums paid in – whichever is more
  • Customers can get benefit amount from £2,000 to £20,000 and premiums start from as little as £6.47 a month (for a 50 year old and £2,000 benefit amount)
  • British Seniors Insurance Agency offers three times the benefit amount from day one for accidental death
  • British Seniors Insurance Agency offers flexibility, allowing amendments or changes to increase or decrease cover amounts without any additional fees or charges (If the benefit amount is reduced the Lifetime Payback Guarantee® will also reduce)
  • Customers (50-79 years old and UK residents) are guaranteed to be accepted with no health or blood tests
  • Should a non-accidental death occur in the first 2 years loved ones will receive all premiums paid in (after 2 years, cover is provided for death due to any cause)
  • Premiums are fixed and do not increase


About British Seniors Insurance Agency:

British Seniors Insurance Agency® is a trading name of Neilson Financial Services Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and entered on the Financial Services register www.fsa.gov.uk/register/ under reference 594926. Neilson Financial Services Limited. Registered in England and Wales. Number 07986483. Registered Office: Landmark Place, Windsor Road, Slough, Berkshire SL1 1JL. All products are arranged by British Seniors Insurance Agency and issued, underwritten and administered by Scottish Friendly Assurance Society Limited which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under reference 110002, with permission to effect and carry out contracts of insurance.


About Neilson Financial Services

Neilson Financial Services (NFS) is a UK Insurance Intermediary specialising in the provision of Life Insurance directly to consumers through two retail brands: British Seniors Insurance Agency and Smart Insurance.

NFS started in the UK 3 years ago and work in partnership with Scottish Friendly an Insurance company with over 150 years of financial services heritage.

The NFS strategy is to distribute innovative products to the direct insurance market, such as the new Lifetime Payback Guarantee®, and to ensure that customers consistently receive a high quality, fully integrated service.

Key to success is their specialist in-house Marketing team and UK based call centre providing exemplary customer service in sales, services and policy administration.