Understanding the Motability Scheme
Statistics published in March via the government’s Family Resources Survey revealed that 14.1 million people in the UK reported a disability in 2018-19 – 21% of the population.
Meanwhile, the NHS states there are approximately 1.2 million wheelchair users in our country, two-thirds of which are classed as regular users. For many, dealing with a disability can prove extremely challenging – not only for the individual but for their closest friends and family, too.
But having a disability does not mean you have to forego your independence. Technological advances are being made all the time in order to aid those who are disabled, enhancing their quality of life by way of devices and features designed for both in the home and for getting out and about.
For example, initiatives such as the Motability Scheme have been set up to help people with disabilities retain that all-important sense of freedom. But what exactly is the scheme, and how does it work?
What is the Motability Scheme?
The Motability Scheme has been created to allow anyone who receives a higher rate mobility allowance to use that money to lease a car, scooter, powered wheelchair or wheelchair accessible vehicle (WAV).
This higher rate mobility allowance could come via Personal Independence Payment (PIP) or through the Disability Living Allowance, although you can no longer apply for the latter if you’re over the age of 16, as it has been replaced by PIP.
How does it work?
You can exchange all or part of your allowance to lease the vehicle you want, and payments will be taken every four weeks by the Department for Work and Pensions and paid to Motability Operations Ltd.
In terms of running costs, you’ll only have to pay for fuel – insurance, maintenance and breakdown cover are all included in the lease price. And, if you rely on others to do the actual driving, you can insure up to three named drivers.
What cars are available?
The scheme works with a number of dealers and WAV suppliers such as Allied Mobility and there are a wide range of cars that can be leased via the initiative. As well as WAVs – models which have been specially adapted to carry passengers in wheelchairs or to enable those in a wheelchair to drive – you can lease almost any car through the scheme, from small city cars and coupes to estate vehicles and 4x4s.