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Driving - Carers UK Forum


Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
I'm new to this site although I've been a full-time carer for two years now. My mother has something called Phar's Syndrome which, is very rare and of course that means very few people know what it is (including neurologists). Her condition has deteriorated recently and with this disease no one knows what will happen, when etc.
But my question is about driving. I currently don't have a driving license and we live in the country. We're not totally cut off or anything but it would be useful/ a relief to have a car. Partially because of the uncertainty factor associated with her illness. Also, I rather selfishly, worry if something happens I won't be able to get to job interviews easily etc. (I'm a writer currently but I would need another job to pay the rent/bills).
Has anyone gone through the mobility scheme? How much do they take from your mobility allowance? All of it? We're applying for the higher rate of care now which, I now doesn't affect my allowance but would be helpful in filling in the gap left by no more mobility allowance. Does anyone have any stories that could help me through that process. Was it easy? Do they have automatic cars available? Also my social worker mentioned that this association sometimes helps with the cost of driving lessons..I don't know if that's true or not. Does anyone know?

Thank-you for any advice you can give,
The first port of call is http://www.motability.co.uk/ - let us know how you get on. You can choose any car you can afford if the benefits come through, but I havent looked into the rules for personal use by carers, though I gather that plenty of people do have full use of their carees motability car. Carers UK does not offer any financial support to carers at all, but social services might help if they assess you need them.
Thanks for your support. I only asked about the lessons because our social worker said that a carer's charity has helped others in the past with lessons. I didn't know if it was this one.
From my understanding, The motability car is only for the use of the person who the car is contracted to, e.g to take them out shopping, doctors, hospital etc.
The carer can use the car but only again if the trip is related to the contracted person, e.g collecting a prescription or running an errand, shopping, taking shoes to be repaired etc.
I don't think the carer would be allowed to go to work, You would have to contact Motability for clarification.
Also you would need an award of 3 years or more in order to take out a Motability contract, so if your mother was awarded only 2 years then you could not get a car.
You may be able to get a carers grant from Social Services to help with the cost of driving lessons, I have heard of others getting grants.
If you are wanting only a basic car, then normally it doesn't take all of the full allowance but a big car say a people carrier would take the full allowance.
Any big main dealer normally has a motability adviser so can run through the options and prices with you.
I hope this info helps.
Hi Sara
There is a link on this site somewhere to a page where you can enter your postcode and a few other details to see if any charities might be able to offer you a funding grant for specific purposes. I don;t see why driving lessons wouldn't be a good becessity to ask for. If no one can find it for you in the meanwhile I will have a look later when I have more time.
Here is the link I mentioned above

My 20 year old son has just started driving lessons paid for by our local carers centre (£500) as he helps to care for his severely disabled brother. This was not to benefit the disabled person but to give the carer an opportunity to do something for himself. Hope this helps.
Hi Sarah,

You should be able to apply for the carers grant to help pay for the cost of your driving lessons. Did the SW not suggest this?
Motability was recognized to offer impaired people with secure, efficient and cost-effective vehicles. You can use this plan to rental a car or operated wheelchair or motorcycle if you have been granted any of:

1. Disability residing allocation (DLA) great amount flexibility component
2. Personal freedom transaction (PIP) improved flexibility component
3. Armed causes freedom payment
4. War pensioners’ flexibility supplement

In the situation of PIP and DLA the prize must usually be for lengthy enough to finish the finish of the selected contract (see 'Length of PIP and DLA awards’ below).

You can implement for a car as a traveler if you are qualified but don’t generate. A mother or father or carer can implement on part of a kid who is getting an prize. Suggested motorists must not have any serious generating beliefs, disqualifications, or recommendations within the last five decades. There are also some limitations on motorists under 25 and those with provisional permits.