Motability is a helpful scheme created to help people with a variety of disabilities go out and about their daily lives with ease by providing them with cars that meet their particular needs — in 2018, 625,000 people participated in the Motability scheme in the UK. Figures are likely higher today. Many of us may be aware of what Motability is, but not many of us could distinguish whether or not we would be entitled to it, or what the scheme actually entitles you to. This article sets out to quash any myths around Motability to make sure you’re informed about your rights.
1. Can I Get a Car Even if I Don’t Drive?
Yes, if you consider yourself to have the disability but you don’t have a driver’s licence nor the ability to drive, you’re still entitled to get a car on the scheme — many people who participate in the scheme don’t drive themselves.
The scheme allows three named drivers to be on the leases’ insurance, which allows your family, carer, or friend drive the vehicle, accommodating your needs and requirements to travel comfortably.
2. What If I’m a Learner Driver?
If you’re a learner driver with a provisional licence, you can lease a Motability car and be named as a permitted driver on the leases’ insurance. However, when learning to drive your Mobility car, you must be in the presence of a driver who is over the age of 21 and has had a licence for a minimum of three years. This nominated person must also be named on the leases’ insurance in case of the event that they must take the car in their own control. You don’t want to be learning to drive without an experienced driver to make sure you and others on the road are safe.
3. Am I Eligible?
You’re eligible for the Motability scheme and could choose from many car brands and models including Ford Motability cars if you receive any one of these allowances:
- Enhanced Rate of the Mobility of Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
- The Higher Rate Mobility of the Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- Armed Forces Independent Payment (AFIP)
- War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement (WPMS)
4. Do I Get a Blue Badge Too?
No, if you participate in the Motability scheme, you’ll need to apply for the Blue Badge scheme separately to get parking benefits — head to the government website to apply in your local area. You can apply only online if you live in England and Wales. If you have a Blue Badge and it is due to expire soon, apply for a new one as soon as possible as it can take a few weeks to arrive.
After August 30th 2019, changes were made to Blue Badge eligibility, which became more inclusive of people with non-visible disabilities. Read here to find out if you can qualify for a Blue Badge.
5. Can I Make Adaptions to My Lease?
Yes, you can make adaptations to your lease to improve your driving experience, which includes a range of devices connected to your car. The Motability scheme provides 500 different options for adaptations to suit different disabilities at no extra cost.
Adaptations typically fit under three categories:
- Driving adaptations to make it easier to drive
- Access adaptations to assist getting in and out of the car
- Stowage adaptations to stow wheelchairs, scooters, or other equipment to help
6. What If I Can’t Afford Breakdown Cover?
Don’t worry, your lease includes full breakdown assistance for the entirety of your lease provided by RAC Motability Assist on 0800 73 111 73. This includes recovery of your vehicle which may either be fixed roadside or taken to a nearby repairer, onward travel of up to eight people to a single destination you were headed, and a replacement vehicle until yours is fit to drive.
7. Can I Trade in My Car for the Mobility Scheme?
Yes, you can take your privately owned vehicle to most Motability Scheme dealerships. Trading in your old car can help fund your advance payment or extras for your lease. This can be useful if your mobility allowance doesn’t cover the cost for larger or more expensive cars.
If you’re eligible for Motability, visit a dealership participating in the scheme to arrange a test drive and begin the process or ordering you your car. If you know what sort of car you want, you can search on online dealerships.