DeadHappy, a life insurance agency in Leicester, has received a lot of heat from the public after they featured a serial killer in their latest advert. Though the firm has been known to release unusual promotional materials in the past, this may be the worst one yet.

The company's commercial, which was posted on different social media platforms, included a photo of Harold Shipman, alongside the statement "Life insurance: Because you never know who your doctor might be."

Shipman was sentenced to life imprisonment in the year 2000 after he was found guilty of killing 15 people under his care as an English general practitioner. Labelled as one of the United Kingdom's most prolific serial killers in modern times, Shipman aka "Doctor Death" has been estimated to have killed over 250 people through drug overdose, most of whom were old women, ATI reports. He was found dead in his prison cell due to suicide in 2004.

The founder of Cura Financial Services, Kathryn Knowles, tweeted "​​Please know that many of us in insurance find this beyond despicable," in response to the advert. She also added that a report would be filed and sent to the Financial Conduct Authority and the advertising watchdog.

A family member of one of Shipman's victims also saw the advert and stated, "As someone who's [sic] relative was murdered by Harold Shipman, your latest advert utilizing his image is despicable and unacceptable. I hope you enjoy yet another judgment from ASA and change your practices."

In an attempt to defend their actions, the firm's founder wrote a statement, "We are called DeadHappy, and our strapline is 'Life insurance to die for' so we are aware of the provocative and to some the very shocking nature of our brand. But being provocative is different to being offensive, and it is of course never our intention to offend or upset people."

Andy Knott added that they intended "to make people stop and think" and apologized for the distress it may have caused some people.

Harold Shipman
A Greater Manchester Police officer has claimed the force misled Harold Shipman's victims' families