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Organ Donation - Did you know the Law changed in the first Lockdown?

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Organ Donation - Did you know the Law changed in the first Lockdown?

From 20 May 2020, the law on organ donation in England changed to an opt-out system. This means that in most cases, adults who die in England will be treated as having agreed to be an organ donor.

If you are thinking about your Will, it is a good time to review your and your family’s views on the donation of your organs when you die.

The opt-out system does not apply:

  • Where the person who died made a decision on consent before their death (either by recording their decision to give or refuse consent or naming someone to make that decision for them).
  • To persons falling within one of the following excluded groups:
    • - people under the age of 18;
    • - people who lack mental capacity;
    • - visitors to England, and those not living there by choice;
    • - people who have lived in England for less than 12 months before their death.
  • Where a person such as a partner, certain family members or a friend of long standing, provides information that would lead a reasonable person to decide that the person who died would not have consented to be a donor.

From December 2015, the law in Wales is that if the person who died had not registered an organ and tissue donation decision (opt in or opt out), they will be treated as not objecting to becoming a donor.

For further information on the law on organ donation in England and Wales, see the web link below.

If you are considering a Will and would like more information about organ donation, documenting your funeral wishes or considering donating your body for medical research, please contact our friendly, knowledgeable team who will be very happy to assist.

Link: The law on organ donation in England and in Wales

Our articles are intended for general information purposes only and are not a substitute for professional advice tailored to your specific circumstances. We are always very happy to discuss any plans, issues or concerns you may have and to clarify how we might be able to help. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.