In austerity-hit, cash-strapped Spain, body donation is up, funeral costs are down and people can no longer afford to pay the rent on family graves.
At Son Valenti cemetery, in Palma, Majorca, 6,200 grave owners have defaulted on their annual rent of €10.50 per body, forcing the local municipality to evict entire families from their niches.
Spaniards are also selling their family graves, arguing that it is better to use their money in the here and now. One family from Andalusia said they had recently exhumed more than a dozen relatives going back several generations and cremated them rather than pay thousands of euros in annual upkeep for their graves. They declined to give their name for fear of being ostracized by neighbors.