Motability cars have grown to become essential for disabled people
Many people have heard of Motability, but unless you’ve had first-hand experience of the scheme you’d be forgiven for being unsure exactly what it offers.
In the 1970s the British Government began to acknowledge the huge financial and practical barriers to transport for disabled people. In response, a Government initiative set up the charity Motability in 1978 followed by a whole range of other schemes to assist with the cost of travel such as exemption from road tax. Back in the 1970s public transport was unable to provide necessary assistance for many disabled people and journeys beyond walking distance were a logistical nightmare. Although public transport has significantly improved since then, the cost and practicalities still make it prohibitive for many people with physical impairments. Often they are trapped in their own homes without any way of getting to work, going shopping or visiting friends and family.
Although Motability provides help with the financial cost of mobility scooters and powered wheelchairs, it is most often used to access suitable vehicles that disabled people can drive themselves or use to get around with the help of a carer. Since it began, Motability has delivered over three and a half million cars to disabled customers, significantly improving their lives.
Who Can Get Help from Motability?
There are several mobility related government benefits that entitle the recipient to access the scheme. Take a look at The Motability website to check the most recent legislation concerning eligibility.
What Vehicle Should I Get?
It depends on your usual daily activities or what you would be doing if transport was no problem, as well as how restrictive your impairment is to getting in a car or minivan. If you are not sure, then do some investigations into what scooters, powered wheelchairs and vehicles are available. Most car manufacturers, including some luxury brands, work with Motability and all will be happy to provide further information on which vehicles they can offer through the scheme.
Important Things You Need to Consider
Today Motability cars have grown to become essential for disabled people of all ages and circumstances but there are some important things to think about when considering Motability as an option. Some people mistakenly believe that all disabled people are given free cars; this is NOT the case. Although they do offer help with insurance and roadside recovery you will still need to fund any deposit due as well as the cost of any adaptations.
The car will be leased, rather than owned – in return for your mobility benefit. At the end of the lease you will be given the option to buy the vehicle or return it, when any benefit due will be paid to you again, or you can arrange a new lease.
Thanks to Motability, millions of disabled people have been able to maintain their mobility and independence for the last four decades, helping disabled people to stay ‘on the move.’
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