Latest data from the Office of National Statistics show mortality rates for 2011 at the lowest ever recorded. 9000 fewer deaths were registered in 2011 compared to 2010. Despite this decrease, probate lawyers and probate service firms are holding on to their market share.
Mortality rates for England and Wales in 2011 were 6,172 deaths per million population for males and 4,402 deaths per million population for females. Compared with 2010, this is a fall of 3.7 per cent for males and 3.9 per cent for females. Since 1991 mortality rates have decreased by 40 per cent for males and 31 per cent for females.
ONS stated: “Mortality rates are generally falling; reasons for this include medical advances in the treatment of many illnesses and diseases. This is illustrated by the reduction in age-standardised mortality rates for many causes of death.”
There were 8,875 fewer deaths in 2011 compared to 2010. 484,367 deaths were registered in England and Wales in 2011 compared with 493,242 in 2010 (a fall of 1.8 per cent), and 532,498 in 2001. This is the third consecutive year that annual death registrations have been below half a million. Before 2009, the last time that death registrations fell below half a million was in 1952. The number of deaths is affected by mortality rates (which can be affected by epidemics and very cold winters) and the size and demographic structure of the population.
Statistics from the Probate Registry released earlier this year, showed the number of grants of probate issued to solicitors and companies providing probate services, increased slightly between 2010 and 2011.