Many carers use their cars to carry disabled people and to do odd jobs for them. Obviously if the car has been modified, for example to hold a wheelchair, then the insurance company will need to know. But what about general insurance liability? If you regularly drive a disabled person, or do jobs for them, does it affect your premium?
Chartwell Insurance specialises in insurance for people with disabilities, and for those who care for them. Here the broker’s car experts set the record straight on car insurance for carers.
Do I need special car insurance to carry the person or people I care for?
In most circumstances, you will just need a standard policy, with personal business use added. This may increase your premium by 25 to 30%. However, if you are paid for the journey itself, as if you were a taxi, then you will need to talk to your insurer as it will affect the policy.
What happens to my insurance if I adapt my vehicle for disabled passengers?
You need to tell your insurance company about any modifications, including ones to help disabled passengers. Some insurers may refuse to cover an adapted vehicle. However, insurance specialists like Chartwell should be able to find a suitable policy and, in many cases, the modifications will not affect the premium.
What if the modification is damaged in an accident? Will it be covered?
Again, your insurance should cover you for this. Most Chartwell policies cover adapted vehicles’ modifications and parts on a ‘new for old’ basis.
Can other drivers use the car if it has been modified?
If there is more than one driver involved it will be worth talking to your insurance company. Ask if they allow carers to be named drivers on policies, or if they can set up a policy that allows any driver to use the vehicle. This will help keep total costs down.
What about if the other driver is a family member who is under 25?
Many insurance companies don’t like named drivers on standard car policies to be family members under 25. However, if there is a valid reason for them to be on the policy, such as the need to transport people with disabilities, then companies like Chartwell will normally accommodate them.
It’s always worth talking to an insurance company that specialises in insurance for people with disabilities, since they will have expert knowledge and be able to offer specialist policies for most eventualities.
If you have a general enquiry about car insurance for carers and people with disabilities, Chartwell Insurance has an FAQ page or you can call them direct on 0800 0890146. Other good sources of advice and information include Carers UK and NHS Carers Information.