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PIP enhanced rate and road tax relief on carer's car?

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VikingMermaid
VikingMermaid Community member Posts: 7 Listener
My adult daughter has recently been awarded PIP, enhanced rate for both daily living and mobility, primarily because of her extreme anxiety that is a part of her autism.  

When she received her PIP award notification, she received a leaflet saying she was entitled to free vehicle tax.  However, my daughter does not drive and relies upon me to drive her on those occasions she does feel able to leave the house.

My question is: can I apply for road tax relief on our car?

The leaflet (DVLA INS216) says (under the heading, 'Who can apply for the free vehicle tax?'):
'The registered keeper, who can be;
- the person with the illness or disability
- someone who uses their vehicle only for the ill or disabled person'

I just want to check I understand this correctly.  We have one car, which only I drive (there are just the two of us in our family).  My daughter is reliant on me for psychological support when she is able to leave the house, and I am her registered carer.  

So, am I entitled to apply for free disabled tax on her behalf?  I don't want to claim anything she's not entitled to; at the same time, we have missed out on various entitlements in the past, owing to lack of, or incorrect, information.

Many thanks :)

Comments

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,235 Disability Gamechanger
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    HI,

    You can claim the disabled vehicle tax but the only problem with this is the car must only be used for the purpose of the disabled perosn. If you use the car for your own purpses as well then you won't be able to do this. Which is what this part means here...

    - someone who uses their vehicle only for the ill or disabled person'



    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • VikingMermaid
    VikingMermaid Community member Posts: 7 Listener
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    Thank you, Poppy123456 for your speedy reply

    This was the sentence I wasn't sure about (my daughter is the only person I use my car for - but of course I do also use it alone when she is unable to accompany me); I'm glad you've clarified that for me - you've saved me making a wasted application.

    Many thanks :)
  • wilko
    wilko Community member Posts: 2,458 Disability Gamechanger
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    It’s a very grey area, using the car for the benefit of the claimant covers many areas. Taking the person out, to appointments, shopping. The other things that you could say is I am using the car to earn a living to put food on the table for the claimant and myself. I know people who have mobility cars and use them to go off fishing the husband not the claimant but the claimant benefits knowing the husband is getting rest-bite from caring duties. Another goes bowling pick up fellow team mates. Another has paid the extra on their mobility car to have a bigger model to tow their caravan. I never claimed the free tax on my car so as my daughters can use the car for any purpose. The tax is only £20 per year .
  • VikingMermaid
    VikingMermaid Community member Posts: 7 Listener
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    Yes, it can be complicated, can't it?  I don't know a huge amount about mobility cars, but it would seem a bit mad to have two cars in the one family (one a mobility car, one not) if only one were needed.  Yet if that meant the non-disabled person in the family was not ever permitted to drive the mobility car on their own anywhere, it *would* necessitate having two cars.  

    Certainly in our case my daughter mostly can't/won't accompany me to do the food shop (and I only go to a small supermarket nearby, which is invariably quiet, has low-level lighting, and is far more manageable than the average supermarket, with all the noise and lights and general chaos).  So I need the car to do that, as well as to take her to all her appointments, or for when she does feel able to get out into nature if we can drive her far away enough from home, where she feels there's little chance we'll bump into anybody we know.  Public transport is generally a no-no.  

    I don't resent driving her wherever she needs to be: we should all do whatever we can to support one another, whatever our needs are - but were she not disabled I would invariably choose we go by train wherever possible, and expect her to be self-reliant (ie use public transport or learn to drive) if she wished to go anywhere by herself.  Running a car is such a huge expense and I've often lived without one in the past.

    I guess it comes down to what the purpose of the free road tax is for.  The scheme effectively recognises that the financial burden on many/most disabled people can be heavy (because of their disability); it recognises, too, that many disabled people are only able to get out and about by having personal transport, and doesn't wish to penalise them further for something that is beyond their control.  By the same token, if you (as a non-disabled person) only use a vehicle to drive that person around, then you are also entitled to that recognition.  Me? I do occasionally use the car for my own use - although that's principally to go and visit my elderly Mum nearby, who I also care for.

    I think I shall monitor my driving and see if there are other occasions I use the car when it is not in a caring capacity (I really hadn't realised just how much this is what it's become).  I suspect, though, we shan't be applying for the tax vehicle relief.
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,235 Disability Gamechanger
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    I know if you had a vehicle from motability they are a lot more lenient in situations like this. Providing the car is being used to benefit the disabled person then there shouldn't be any problems.. for example. If you had to work then you can use the car for work because you are provding for the disabled person. The same for shopping etc.
    Road tax rules are different or so the links tell us but i agree it's a grey area.
    If you are thinking of using her Enhanced mobility to get a car then give motability a quick ring to ask them. I've been with them for 5 years now and on my 2nd car and have always found them to be extremely helpful. https://www.motability.co.uk/

    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • VikingMermaid
    VikingMermaid Community member Posts: 7 Listener
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    Thanks; that's interesting to know.  Originally we did think it'd be great to get a car from Motability: no more stressing about servicing, MOTs, breakdowns etc.  But it's a costly trade-off (especially when money has always been tight for us - and I mean tight; we have always had cars that are mostly 12-15 years old; current car is 21 years old as we simply couldn't afford anything more modern). It would take a lot of getting used to, spending so much a week on a vehicle.  Something for us to think about now that the money is there!  

    My other concern about getting a vehicle through Motability is that I have ADHD and dyspraxia, meaning most of my cars end up covered in bumps and scratches :# .  I'm not sure how that would play out when needing to return it!  (The best outcome would be for my daughter to learn to drive - and she does know that there are driving instructors out there who are particularly attuned to extreme anxiety in autistic individuals - so she could then get her own vehicle through Motability, and I would just have to fend for myself!)

    All a learning curve.  Thanks for the information and link.  I* shall do some thinking.  (*I would have liked to have typed 'we' but stuff like this is too anxiety-inducing for my daughter to engage with.)
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,235 Disability Gamechanger
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    I've always had older cars too until i was awarded Enhanced mobility in 2016. I immediately went to some dealers to look at different cars because i knew that having a new car without any stress and cost of all the MOT's, breakdowns, repairs, tyres and everything else that comes with the cost of having a car, was far to much. Motability takes off all that stress and all you pay for is fuel. If anything goes wrong you ring the dealer and they'll book the car in, if you need a courtesy car while yours in the garage then it's there if needed, at no cost to you.
    I can't fault the way motability deal with things either. Where i live parking is an absolute nightmare, 6 foot walls either side, cars parked on the one side, as well as bins on bin day, which all add to the difficulties parking. I did bump my car twice so i rang them and told them. I had a choice of either having it repaired at a cost of £100 (the insurance excess) or leaving it as it was and because it's was a hnuge amount of damage it wouldn't affect my good condition bonus at the end of my 3 year lease.
    Everyday scrapes and scratches are normal, scratches on alloy wheels, scratches on doors etc etc are all part of everyday driving and they don't penalise you for this either.
    With your daughter learning to drive, if you choose a car from motability with her PIP award she can apply for a grant to learn to drive all paid for by motability... details here. https://www.motability.co.uk/contact/faqs/how-can-i-get-help-with-the-cost-of-driving-lessons
    Don't worry about the "we" or "I" either. I totally understand where you're coming from there. My daughter has ASD and learning disability and i usually have to make all the decisions for her too.
    What ever you decide i'm sure it will be the right decision for you all as a family :)

    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • VikingMermaid
    VikingMermaid Community member Posts: 7 Listener
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    Ahh, Poppy123456, you make me want to cry.  Thank you for so much for understanding (in every way): I feel like I've been really listened to.  I

     only chanced upon the learn-to-drive grant yesterday (on the Motability link that you posted; thank you), but waived it off as we wouldn't be getting a Motability car.  But now you've given me more food for thought.  I can at least let my daughter know about the grant towards lesson costs, so the idea can sit and brew in her head.  And I'm sure I can find the info/advice I need online regarding recommended drivers to teach somebody who is autistic.  Slowly slowly does it!  

    Meanwhile, I hope you're having a good (or good-enough!) weekend.  Take good care :) 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,235 Disability Gamechanger
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    You're very welcome. I hope you've had a good weekend :)
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
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