Ask An Expert: Communicating Effectively With Grieving Families

Recent Office for National Statistics (ONS) data indicates that the UK has suffered over 50,000 more excess deaths in the opening five months of 2020. Unfortunately, this means that more clients are likely to need probate services for deceased relatives who have fallen victim to the virus.

Governmental working restrictions are beginning to ease and the country is starting to adapt to a new working environment. Whilst some are encouraged to work from home, private clients may be forced to shield. For the time being we may be living through a hybrid environment blending face to face communication with video conferencing.

However we meet our clients, Covid-19 has impacted all of us and will definitely have reshaped our clients lives. Legal service practitioners need to consider how they will communicate with families devastated by the virus so they are able to effectively convey their desires.

Unexpected deaths will mean the grieving process is thrust upon relatives and loved ones and this will mean that we need to adapt to the changing needs of our clients.

Adele Ballantyne, experienced counsellor, psychotherapist and trainer has taken the time to offer some crucial advice in how to effectively communicate with the grieving families of Covid-19 victims by actively listening, offering empathy, embracing the uncomfortable and providing declarative and understandable statements.

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