Wheelchairs can be a big investment, so protecting them with wheelchair insurance makes sense. After all, if the worst happened and your wheelchair was broken or damaged, would you be able to replace it?
Or what if you left it outside your home or outside a shop and it was stolen? How would you cope?
This kind of experience can be incredibly disruptive to a wheelchair user’s life. Getting around, going to work, socialising with friends or attending school or college would all be disrupted if a normally ever-present wheelchair went missing or got damaged. Plus, the unexpected expense of repairs or a replacement chair may be too much for you to manage.
What can wheelchair insurance offer you?
If you are considering taking out a wheelchair insurance policy, look closely at the terms and conditions and exactly what is offered, in what circumstances. Would your chair be covered if it was broken on holiday, for instance, or does it only cover you when you’re at home?
Different policies cover different situations, but some typical coverage for various eventualities are as follows:
- Accidental damage to your wheelchair, which might include floods, fire or storm
- Theft of your wheelchair
- Deliberate vandalism of your wheelchair
- Replacement of your wheelchair if repairs are not possible or feasible
- Public liability insurance, if there is an accident involving your wheelchair that causes injury or damage to people or property
- Cover for you and other people who might use your wheelchair
- Coverage of any personal effects that are lost or stolen along with your wheelchair
- Coverage for injuries you suffer while using your wheelchair
- The use of your wheelchair on holiday or at home
- The hire of a replacement wheelchair if yours becomes too damaged to use or is stolen
- A recovery service, where the wheelchair is recovered from certain places if it breaks down or is damaged. You might want to consider whether you would want a 24/7 recovery service, or whether office hours only would be sufficient
- Coverage for wheelchairs damaged by airlines
- Coverage for wheelchair accessories, such as arm rests and tyres
- Whether replacement wheelchairs are ‘new for old’.
You will also want to factor in whether there is an excess to pay when a wheelchair needs to be repaired or replaced, and whether damage such as punctures are covered.
How to choose wheelchair insurance
- The first step, when choosing wheelchair insurance, is to find a range of policies that are valid for your circumstances. Look at the options available and compare the benefits of each policy against your own priorities.
- Look, too, at the prices of the policies. Some companies offer varying prices with more or less coverage, so that customers can choose how much they spend, while still getting basic coverage of their chair and accessories. Don’t overspend without comparing policy prices, but at the same time, be wary of going for the cheapest policy without checking the details, any exceptions and the excess.
- Do choose an wheelchair insurance provider in your country. If you are travelling abroad, you may be tempted to get coverage there, but it is far simpler to deal with policies and understand the details, as well as stay protected, when your policy provider speaks your language and is dealing with the familiar laws of your country.
Wheelchair insurance can help to protect against many potential dangers and reduce the impact that a damaged or stolen wheelchair would have on your life. Strongly consider it, as it can help you to maintain your independence should the worst happen.