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Dilemma: how do I make sure I'm buried with my late husband?

Katharine Whitehorn / 07 April 2016

A reader worries her wishes will be ignored after her death and wants to know how she can ensure she is buried with her late husband.

Widow at her husband's grave
A widowed reader is concerned that her wishes will be ignored after her death

Dilemma: I want to be buried with my husband

When my husband died nearly 20 years ago he wanted to be buried in our local cemetery where we had lived for many years, so I ordered a double grave for us. 

We only had one child, a son now in his mid-thirties, married with a family of his own, who lives at a distance. 

He has a well-paid job but is hopeless with money – I’ve given him most of my savings helping him in one crisis or another. 

He has now informed me that he understood the double grave was for him and his Dad and even said I had told him I wanted to be cremated! There is no truth in this at all, but how can I ensure I do get buried with my dear husband? 

I did think of talking to my solicitor but then I realised my son might think I would do this, so he only has to go to them after my funeral when it will be too late.

Katharine Whitehorn's advice

No, if you’ve done the right things he won’t be able to go against what you have put in your will. I can’t quite make out what you son’s trying to get out of all this; whoever heard of sons being buried with their fathers, except in a massive family vault with six generations of noblemen? 

But get yourself two executors – the solicitor and one other; make sure they know exactly what your wishes are, that these are in your will, and that it is correctly witnessed. 

You might try telling your son that if he goes on like this you won’t leave him a penny, but I rather fear you’re too good-natured to do that; but at least rest assured that of course you have every right to share your grave with your husband.

Related: planning and paying for your own funeral


The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.