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Thursday, 6 January 2011

The Motability Scheme

Buying and adapting a car can be expensive. The Motability Scheme - run by the independent charity Motability - gives disabled people the opportunity to own or lease a car at an affordable price.

How the scheme works

The Motability Scheme can help you with leasing or buying a car if you're getting the War Pensioners' Mobility Supplement or the higher rate of the mobility component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA). Even if you do not drive yourself, you can apply for a car as a passenger and propose two other people as your drivers.

You can also apply for a car on behalf of a child aged three or over who is entitled to the higher rate mobility component of Disability Living Allowance.

Contract hire

Through the contract hire scheme you can lease a new car supplied by a Motability accredited dealer for at least three years. Insurance, routine servicing and breakdown assistance are included. You may need to pay for the fitting and removal of any adaptations.

You can apply if you have 12 months or more of your Disability Living Allowance 'award' remaining. If your award is not renewed during the full length of your chosen scheme, your car will need to be returned.

At the end of the period the car is returned to Motability Operations, the not-for-profit company, which operates the car schemes under contract to Motability.

Hire purchase

Hire purchase enables you to buy the car you want. This can be a new or used car. You are responsible for negotiating the purchase price of the car with the dealer and arranging insurance cover. At the end of the hire purchase agreement - which can be between three and five years - you will own the car.

Powered wheelchairs or scooters

Motability also offers a contract hire scheme for powered wheelchairs or scooters that includes insurance cover and routine servicing for the agreement's three-year duration.

Financial help and VAT relief

If money is a problem when financing the car or adaptations, Motability may be able to provide a grant through their own charitable fund or the Specialised Vehicle Funds, which they administer for the government.

Disabled people don't have to pay VAT on the cost of hiring a car through the Motability Scheme. The cost of any work involved in adapting a vehicle for a disabled person is also eligible for VAT relief.

Contact Motability

To find out more about the Motability Scheme, contact Motability on the numbers below, or visit their website.

Telephone: 0845 456 4566

Minicom: 0845 675 0009

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