Sunday, December 4, 2011

Motability Explained by Cara Mc Laughlin

Motability is a not-for-profit independent organisation. They provide mobility solutions including wheelchairs, scooters and standard or wheelchair cars for people with disabilities. The Motability Scheme lets you use your mobility allowance to obtain mobility equipment.


To be eligible for the Motability Scheme you need to either receive the Higher Rate Mobility Component (HRMC) of the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or the War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement (WPMS). When you apply for a car through the Motability Scheme you need to have a least 12 months award length remaining.

If you are a wheelchair user and receive the mobility allowance but don’t drive, you can apply for a wheelchair accessible vehicle as a passenger by simply proposing up to two other people as your drivers.

Also, if you have a child aged 3 or older who is entitled to the mobility allowance, you may apply for a mobility car on their behalf.

Getting a Car on the Motability Scheme

There are two main options within the Motability Scheme for you to choose from.

You can either opt for a new mobility car on a 3 to 5 year contract hire lease, or alternatively, opt for a new or used wheelchair car on hire purchase over 3 to 5 years.

Contract Hire – Most find this the best option to obtain and pay for a brand new car. It’s convenient with a single regular payment. It also includes comprehensive insurance, maintenance and breakdown cover. Once the hire agreement ends, usually after 3 to 5 years, the car is simply returned to Motability.

Hire Purchase – This is a form of credit. You agree to buy the mobility car from a supplier and use your Disability Living Allowance or War and Pensioners’ Supplement to pay monthly by direct debit for the period of the agreement. The finance company has a security interest in the goods until all amounts owed by you have been paid. This option is best if you plan to exceed 60,000 miles in three years or if you have chosen a vehicle that has a high specification and/or larger Advance Payment because you are buying the vehicle outright so retain an asset at the end of the agreement.

Depending on the vehicle you choose you may need to pay an Advance Payment if the cost of the car you have chosen is higher than your full allowance can cover. The difference would be converted to an Advance Payment at the start of your agreement and the cost will vary depending on the vehicle.