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  1. #1
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    New Motability Rules

    Hi, I am the named driver on my mother's motability car. She is severely disabled and in her late 80s. I provide her with care on a daily basis - sometimes during the night.

    The current agreement runs out in March and my new application is being refused on the grounds that I have a driving conviction in the last 5 years. An oversight led to me driving without insurance on another vehicle, this was simply an issue with a direct debit. I was only fined £100 and received some points on my licence, I declared this to motability and it was a non-issue. In 32 years of driving this is my one and only driving conviction and was entirely due to an oversight. However, since the new rules my application is not being accepted by motability; I am told I can appeal and need help setting out this appeal. This would mean my mother would have to enter a care home, as without my daily/nightly care she could live independently at home.

    1) Could anyone please direct me to the full Terms and Conditions of Motability - under the new rules?

    2) As I only have the driving conviction for 'driving without insurance' (3 years ago) in 32 years of driving will my appeal be granted?

    3) Does anyone have a list of the kinds of driving convictions that would bar a person from Motability?

    Thank you, I would appreciate as much help and information as possible, ideally with references to law and caselaw as I really need to win this appeal to avoid my mother having to enter a care home. Thank you so much in advance. Paul

  2. #2
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    Unless I'm missing something obvious, there is no law or case law as such, because an insurance company is entitled to decide that a proposer does not meet their underwriting criteria. Effectively, if you strip away the "wrapper" of Motability, my first sentence describes your position - RSA Motability are refusing to offer you cover on a new vehicle for your mother based on your conviction for driving without insurance.

    Unfortunately, insurers typically take a dim view of insurance related convictions. Moreover, like many motoring offences, driving without insurance is a strict liability offence - the offence is complete when you drive a motor vehicle a public road without legally required minimum insurance cover. How and why you came to drive uninsured is not relevant when it comes to conviction.

    There is no guarantee that you will be allowed to drive on a new Motability agreement even though you have been allowed to drive on your mother's current agreement, not least as the rules on driver acceptability were toughened in early 2012. However, all is not lost, especially as you seem to have had a lower than usual fine imposed by a court indicating the existence of some mitigation (the endorsable fixed penalty for driving without insurance is £200 and 6 points if I remember correctly).

    It would seem best to direct any queries about the factors that might weight any decision in your favour directly with RSA Motability. I world certainly point out your inclusion on a current Motability policy, any other motor insurance you have, the circumstances of your conviction and what led to the lower fine than the standard fixed penalty.

  3. #3
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    Thank you for your help Flymo.

    Can anyone else on the forum add anything to that advice please?

  4. #4
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    Unfortunately it's RSA's right to refuse to insure whoever they want to especially on the grounds of driving without insurance.
    Why didn't the police just give you a warning instead of a conviction if it was only a paperwork problem?

    - Motability don't set the rules, it is RSA (Royal Sun Alliance) as they are the insurance provider. There hasn't been a change of rules, but Insurance costs have risen and so that might be why they won't insure you.

    - 32 years driving experience doesn't mean that you are any good at it - it just means you have only been caught once. I doubt your appeal will be granted.

    Proposed drivers with certain convictions, disqualifications or endorsements within the last five years will not be allowed. Speak to your dealer or RSAM for more information.
    from http://www.motability.co.uk/cars-and...ed-car-drivers

    - There is no list on the web, but I you could have a guess couldn't you? Drink driving? drug driving? no insurance? dangerous driving?


    Anyway, back to the real issue, your mother.

    What you need to do now is forget about Motability for the foreseeable future, well until the conviction is expunged from your licence, and use that allowance to fund a private car and pay your own insurance - this might be quite high due to your conviction (and you might get turned down at a few places too).

    Get something cheap, with a low insurance rating and you should be fine.

    good luck.
    Motability Car History
    05/09-05/12; Nissan Qashqai 1.5 Diesel Tekna; 36,500 miles; avg 41.1mpg
    06/12-07/15; Ford C-Max 2.0 Diesel Titanium Powershift; 35,400 miles; avg 37.8mpg
    07/15-09/17; Skoda Octavia 1.6 Diesel SE-L DSG; 28,200miles; avg 43.9mpg
    09/17-Present; VW Touran 1.4 Petrol SEL DSG; 11,600miles; avg 35.9mpg (28.6 - 43.9mpg)

    Click here to send me an email with any private Motoring questions you may have. Replies usually within 48hrs

  5. #5
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    Thank you very much for your advice Paul - very informative.

  6. #6
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    Could RSA not accept an additional payment for the increased risk of accepting a driver with 6 points on their license?

    Perhaps you can ask them.

    As for the appeal - I imagine you'd have to detail what would happen to your mother's quality of life should you not be able to drive her car.

  7. #7
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    According to Motability - RSA are unable to do that, although I have not approached RSA directly with that kind of enquiry. Have you heard of anyone being successful in doing that? Thanks.

  8. #8
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    I doubt RSA Motability will be open to the sort of offer Breaking Back suggests, but you never know. It is mandatory to be covered by RSA Motability if you are to drive a Motability car - you are not allowed to arrange your own insurance.

    As I suggested, and Paul's quote from the Motability web site confirms, you need to talk to RSA Motability to find out their position on drivers with a conviction for driving without insurance. Like Paul, I suspect the answer may well remain 'no', as, in the eyes of an insurance company, a driving with no insurance conviction makes you high risk.

    Really, you have nothing to lose by approaching RSA Motability and asking what, if anything, would change their refusal to cover you in a new agreement. I'm not convinced arguments about your mother's quality of life will work, as they will say the car is for her benefit and it is up to her to find drivers who are entitled to RSA Motability cover if she wants to remain in the scheme.


    It's a balancing act. As Paul says, insurance costs have risen. To keep the costs of Motability affordable for the majority, this may well mean refusing to allow certain drivers regarded as a high insurance risk to drive under the scheme.


    If RSA Motability continue to refuse cover for a new agreement, you need to think about alternatives. Would buying your mother's existing Motability car be an option, putting her mobility component towards the cost? As the car would then be a privately owned vehicle, you would have the option of taxing it in a non-exempt category and using it as your daily transport, which might allow you to dispose of another vehicle and transfer the insurance cover. If the vehicle is adapted, don't forget to declare the adaptations to the insurer.

    I certainly think it would be wise to investigate your options for insuring a privately owned vehicle to transport your mother. The ease of finding insurance and the cost attached might well give you some idea of changing RSA Motability's mind.


    Like Paul, I'm a little surprised you landed up with a driving with no insurance conviction in the circumstances you describe. Insurers typically don't cancel a policy based on one missed payment and will write to warn you of cancellation before it comes into effect, though I appreciate you might not have been the policyholder and may not have known the policy was void.

    Unlike Paul, I'm not surprised that the police didn't let you off with a warning. I can't see any officer exercising their discretion to allow you on your way knowing you have no insurance. I would expect being caught driving with no insurance to result in a conditional offer of a fixed penalty of £200 and 6 points if you are not already on 6 or more points, or being reported on summons if you are not eligible for a fixed penalty. I would also expect the vehicle to be seized under section 165A of the Road Traffic Act 1988 (as amended).

    The circumstances of your driving with no insurance conviction appear to have been accepted as somewhat mitigating by a magistrates' court, as you say you were fined £100 with 6 points. This may carry some weight, but I'd expect most insurers will go purely by the offence you were convicted of and the date it took place.


    What is clear is that there is no 'magic formula' for making a hardship case that will allow you to drive on a new Motability agreement. It's a question of contacting RSA Motability to discuss the situation, and expecting to be rejected, I'm afraid.

  9. #9
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    Flymo, thank you so much for going to the trouble of writing that response - it's beautifully written too.

    For the sake of your curiosity, the police didn't seize the vehicle, they actually drove it home for me and parked it up. I had no idea I was driving without insurance; I was at the end of my marriage (now divorced) and my ex-wife had been taking cash from the account and keeping the missed payments and absence of insurance from me.

    Have you ever heard of anyone using the 'hardship' route being successful? Do you think a letter from my mother's GP stating the extent of her care needs and reliance on me to reamain living at home would be of assistance in my request? Thanks again.

  10. #10
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    In those circumstances, I'm glad to hear that the police used their discretion to deal sensitively with the situation. In a sense, you were a victim.

    Your ex-wife held out that you continued to be insured, and by doing so caused you to suffer loss. If these actions were motivated by dishonesty, they might have amounted to fraud by false representation (contrary to section 2 of the Fraud Act 2006 - assuming, of course, that the events took place after the current law on fraud came into effect).


    I think the starting point is to ring RSA Motability for a chat. I have no idea what factors they might take into account. They could limit their consideration solely to issues of risk, mainly the circumstances of the offence. In this case, I would suggest focusing on the lower than normal fine and explain how you came to be driving uninsured for reasons beyond your control. If you have any documentation to back up your story, such as your decree absolute, you could enclose a copy.

    It would also seem worth bringing up any other insurance you have (which indicates you have got matters back in order) and that you have been covered on your mother's existing Motability vehicle.


    If they are prepared to look at wider factors that might justify a departure from policy, that is the point when you could mention the hardship that refusal of cover would cause your mother and the likely damage to her independence.

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