You read the headline and thought “oh no! – insurance for mobility scooters…”.
I know, this is not the most thrilling topic…
…or even one you would want to get excited about.
It is an important topic and not as painful as you think.
I’ll make this as easy and plain as possible, you will finish this article without getting a headache.
Here, you will find:
- 8 self contained points to consider
- Each point will be clear and actionable
- No fluff! Each point will be completely relevant to you
Between all eight points you should be able to find a decent insurance policy that will give you great coverage (if you need or want it)!
One last thing…
I’m not a lawyer, so take what I say here as simple guidelines for when you are looking for a policy.
This is an information resource to help you, I can’t offer you any definitive legal advice.
So with that out of the,
Let’s get started:
1. Is mobility scooter insurance compulsory in your region?
The very first question you should be asking yourself is:
“Do I legally need insurance for my mobility scooter?”
This question will vary on two factors primarily:
- Where you live
- What kind of mobility scooter you have
The first factor is pretty transparent…
…laws change from place to place – you need to check what you’re states laws are yourself.
The second factor is a little more nuanced.
The law for different regions will do this differently, but in general a person in a mobility scooter is treated like a normal pedestrian legally.
Despite the fact that you are driving a personal motorized vehicle in public.
I spoke about this in my guide on how to find the perfect mobility scooter for your own circumstances, but there are three classes of mobility scooters:
- Class I – These are like electric wheelchairs
- Class II – These are smaller scooters that are limited to a top speed of 4 mph. They are only allowed on pavements
- Class III – These are heavier scooters that can have a top speed of up to 8 mph. Although you are allowed to use them on pavements you still must abide by the 4 mph speed limit. Children are not allowed to use these scooters.
As you can imagine class III scooters can probably do a fair bit of damage in an accident…
…owning one of these types of scooters might require you to have insurance.
There are also other reasons to have insurance besides the law:
- Peace of mind – Accidents do happen, its nice to know you have a safety net
- Financial protection – Your mobility scooter is a big investment, you might want to mitigate any damages
- Cheap – Mobility scooter insurance is cheap, very cheap!
- Freedom of choice – The right insurance policy may help you get a better mobility scooter. Having that extra safety net may make it easier for you to go for the more expensive but superior model mobility scooter
If you are going for an insurance policy, first check with your homeowner’s policy.
You might already be covered.
If not, then you will find policies that last either one or two to three years are very common.
The longer policies might save you money on the total premium you pay.
2. Get a policy that looks out for you
If you shop around you may find a policy that will cover you if get hurt or injured while using your mobility scooter in public.
Now, naturally, there will be loads of bells and whistles that come attached to this…
If you can knock off a bit of the price tag for any unfortunate events that happen to you, why not?
This kind of policy might make more or less sense depending on where you plan on using your scooter.
Like with other types of insurance, it’s an “in-case-of” sort of thing that you hope you never do have to use.
3. Get a policy that looks after strangers so you don’t have to
This is the main argument as to why insurance for mobility scooters should be compulsory.
At the end of the day, you are driving a heavy machine around – potentially rather quickly!
After a while you may get used to it and start paying as close attention as you used to.
If you are the cause of damage to someone’s property or, even worse, injury or fatality to other people then you may be liable for damages.
Even if it is unlikely, it can still happen and a good insurance policy will cover some or all of your expenses for:
- Court cases
- Hospital bills
- Repair of any damages caused to property
4. Get a policy that will protect your mobility scooter
Once you’ve bought your mobility scooter a number of things can happen.
One thing that can happen is that you go on using it for many years and everything is hunky dory – no issues!
Other things that can happen include:
- Your scooter gets damaged from someone else’s negligence
- A storm could wreak havoc where you live
- There could be a fire and your mobility scooter could be destroyed
- Your mobility scooter could be stolen
You will want to make sure any insurance policy for your scooter protects you from these kind of things.
I would encourage you to add to this list, use your imagination.
Don’t think about how unlikely a thing is to occur, get covered for as much as you can…
…Your mobility scooter was expensive, if anything happens to it then you are left with the loss of a major investment.
Make sure your policy will compensate you for the complete value of your mobility scooter.
5. Make sure you know your insurance policy’s limits
Limits in your policy may come in many forms.
The most common cap is a monetary cap on how much the insurance company will pay out for a claim.
You might also be limited by only being covered for a specific mobility scooter.
So if you had an accident, made a claim, got a new mobility scooter and had another accident…
You may not be covered for the second accident.
Make sure you communicate with your insurance company and let them know if you change scooter – find out what the ramifications are!
It might also happen that you are limited on who can use the mobility scooter.
It’s like with car insurance:
In some countries they insure the car…
…in others they insure the driver of the car.
Unless the named person / people on a policy were using the mobility scooter at the time of any mishap, the insurance company won’t cover it.
6. Make sure your new mobility scooter is also covered when it is not so new anymore
This point was slightly touched on before…
Sometimes, there is no natural disaster or a major accident.
Sometimes there is a small bit of damage, so small that you think you can live with it…
…but it just slowly but surely gets worse and worse over time until your scooter just breaks down.
It’s just natural wear and tear.
You will want to make sure your policy covers you for this kind of claim as well.
When discussing your policy with your insurance broker, get a breakdown of all the kinds of things you can get cover for.
Will you get covered for only certain parts of the scooter?
One last consideration, is if you need a new mobility scooter, how much will the insurance company put towards it?
Will they only put forward the value of your original scooter or will it be determined by how much you’ve paid already over the course of your policy?
7. What about breakdown assistance or malfunctioning rescue?
This is VERY important!
The last point was about insurance coverage for a repair or new scooter if yours breaks down.
You’re mobility scooter can only breakdown when you are using it…
…which might be very far away.
It is absolutely essential that whatever policy you go for, it has a call out rescue option.
This means you have access to a service, where in the event that your scooter breaks down and you are far from home…
…you can call a number and someone will come pick you up and bring you home.
Make sure this service is 24 hours, 7 days a week as well.
Okay, it depends on you and your lifestyle…
If you know you are not going to be scooting around at three in the morning then maybe you can broaden your sweep a little bit.
Don’t compromise on this feature though, it is an absolute must!
And don’t forget to save the number in your phone as well.
8. Are you covered when you travel?
Once again, you are going to have to dive into the fine print for this one.
If you want to go on vacation or are traveling, nationally or internationally, for whatever reason, your insurance provider may or may not cover you while you are abroad.
It may be a case that you are only covered in certain parts of the country an not others.
Comb through the fine print and see what it says, or grab your phone and make a timely phone call to speak to someone about it.
Traveling with a mobility scooter can be a bit tedious and involves extra work…
…but when you prepare properly it doesn’t have to be hard.
You can read more on the topic here.
You can also find out more about the types of mobility scooters that make traveling with them easier on this page.
Knowledge is power, especially about insurance
Insurance on anything is great to have, but always a pain to organize.
Research is key in this topic, you need to know what you are entitled to, your legal requirements and what is standard.
Here are two great resources that can help you get started: