As the coronavirus situation in the UK changes and regional restrictions differ, the Motability Scheme remains open and ready to support all of their customers who have questions or concerns.
From the 5 January 2021 new restrictions mean that Motability-accredited car dealership showrooms across the UK have closed. Service departments in all areas are allowed to remain open for essential maintenance and repairs. It may still be possible for Motability vehicle handovers to go ahead and for new vehicle orders to be placed, subject to the ability of your local dealership to safely operate within the latest guidelines.
While Motability Specialists have made a great success of keeping the Motability Scheme running with 'click and collect' -style orders and handovers, many Motability customers have chosen to delay placing their order for a new car until they can actually visit a showroom to see the car they want, touch it and, crucially, take it out for a test drive.
Following the Governments recent announcement, car dealerships in England - classified as non-essential retail - will have to keep their showrooms and forecourts closed to customers until April 12.
Current guidelines mean that dealership showrooms have had to close temporarily, but it may still be possible for new Motability orders to be placed (perhaps via telephone or video call), for new vehicle handovers to go ahead (for example outside in the dealership car park) and for essential vehicle maintenance to be carried out at the dealership workshop.
This is all subject to whether the dealership has the capacity and the Motability-accredited team members available to serve you within the regulations.
Before visiting any dealership - whether it's for essential servicing, a repair or a vehicle handover - make sure you contact them directly before you travel.
If you are in the final three months of your lease (or have had your lease extended due to the pandemic) and you already know which car you would like to order, contact your local dealership to find out whether or not they are able to accept your application for a new vehicle at this time.
If you haven’t placed a new Motability order, or if you don’t return your car on the date your lease is due to end, Motability will automatically extend your vehicle lease for six months, even if you have already had a lease extension. You will also automatically receive a new Certificate of Motor Insurance or a temporary cover note from RSA Motability (RSAM) covering this six-month period.
You will be able to place a new order, or return your vehicle, at any point during this six-month lease extension.
Motability have put together a handy Q&A for customers who have questions about how the different levels of lockdown will affect the running of the scheme in their area.
This advice covers the common questions that have been asked by Motability customers over recent months, including questions related to:
Until 31 July 2021, Motability customers who are experiencing 'temporary and exceptional financial need' can now apply for an advance of the £600 Good Condition Bonus (GCB), which is usually only paid to customers at the end of the vehicle lease.
This GCB payment can be brought forward to provide support during the pandemic, ensuring that Motability customers in need have access to extra money during a period when they may need it most. Motability customers who have already received an early GCB are not able to take advantage of this arrangement twice.
Driving Mobility coordinates a network of 20 driving assessment centres where people with a disability can gain or retain the ability to drive and enhance their personal independence.
Assessments will be carried out 'as soon as possible when the current situation eases'. Check the website for more information.
Disability Driving Instructors coordinates a network of independent driving instructors who teach people with physical disabilities, special educational needs and those with hearing difficulties.
All driving lessons and tests are suspended until restrictions are lifted. For details of the latest information relating to driver training and tests click here.