Vehicle Modifications and Driving Assessments
|RAP Schedule no.||
AP24 (Driving Assessment)
AP01 (Vehicle Modifications)
AP20 (Training for use of a Vehicle Modifications)
AP23 (Car Hoist)Refer to the RAP Schedule.
A driving assessment refers to an assessment of a person’s driving skills to identify the potential need for a vehicle modification. The assessment must be undertaken by a certified driving Occupational Therapist (OT).
Note: Driving assessments do not include assessment for fitness to drive or cognitive ability to drive and/or driver rehabilitation.
A vehicle modification is a modification made to a car/van (vehicle) to allow an entitled person (client) with a disability to access, drive, or travel in. These include modifications and equipment to assist with transfers, manual wheelchair transport (hoists), seating needs (rotating seats for transfers), customised driving controls and other related devices.
DVA does not fund equipment such as vehicle trailers and modifications for the transport of electric mobility aids e.g. electric scooters and wheelchairs.
Manual vehicles will not be converted to automatic.
Modifications to a client’s vehicle will only be considered, if the vehicle is roadworthy and the age and condition of the vehicle is suitable for modification. DVA does not fund the purchase of vehicles under this program.
Vehicle modifications assessments are only to be undertaken by appropriately qualified assessing health providers.
Vehicle modifications must be carried out by workshops and tradespeople specialising in car modifications.
Modified vehicle training – DVA will fund the cost of instructional lessons in how to drive the modified vehicle. This excludes normal driving lessons, or to re-learn driving skills. DVA normally funds up to six lessons.
The client must have a clinical need for a vehicle modification and/or a driving assessment due to a war-caused injury (WCI), disease or an accepted disability. War widows/ers or dependents are not eligible for vehicle modifications and driving assessments.
This applies to both Gold and White Card holders.
There is a limit of one vehicle modification and one driving assessment per client. Requests exceeding this limit may be considered if adequate clinical justification is provided.
|Suitably qualified health provider||
The initial request for a driving assessment, vehicle modifications and subsequent training must come from a GP or LMO.
Driving and vehicle modifications assessments and training must be undertaken by a certified driving (OT). A certified driving OT has specialist post-graduate qualifications in driving assessment.Simple vehicle modifications such as a car seat, hoist, mirrors and step modifications may be prescribed by a suitable OT.
Prior approval and Request for item
Prior approval is required before proceeding with each stage.
A driving assessment will take place before vehicle modifications are considered.
Prior approval for a driving assessment is a three step process:
See Supporting Documentation section for more details.
If required, DVA will refer to a certified driving OT to provide a quote for the assessment and report.
If appropriate, the driving OT submits a request for vehicle modifications as per below.
If the assessment does not support a vehicle modification, a report from the driving OT is sent to the GP/LMO and DVA at rapgeneralenquiries [at] dva.gov.au.
The request for a vehicle modification following the driving assessment
Supporting documentation for prior approval request
The initial request
If the client is the driver, the initial request must provide:
When the client is the passenger and requires the vehicle to be modified for their use. The initial request must provide:
DVA will not fund the removal of completed vehicle modification if they are no longer functionally required.
Supporting documentation - must include:
Completion report following the vehicle modification and training must include confirmation that the vehicle modifications:
DVA on receipt of the completion report will send letters clarifying the responsibilities to the client, the initial requester(GP/LMO), and the prescribing OT including:
|Australian Standards and legislative requirements||Australian Standards include ‘Motor Vehicle controls/adaptive systems for people with disabilities/general requirements’ AS3954:2019, and ‘Motor vehicle controls/adaptive systems for people with disabilities/hand controls/product requirements’, AS3954.2/1991.|
|State legislative requirements||
Modifications requiring alteration(s) to driving controls may require local licence endorsement. In all instances, these modifications should conform to relevant State/Territory Government requirements.
Clients must comply with all state and territory legislation.Client must be aware the use of alcohol, medication (prescription and over the counter) and illicit drugs may impair their ability to safely drive the vehicle.
|Vehicle ownership and licences||
The client must verify ownership of the vehicle, and possession of a suitably endorsed licence where required – by them or some other person who will have responsibility for driving the vehicle – before DVA will proceed with modification.
If the vehicle was purchased with the knowledge of specific disability and the client was not reasonably able to foresee the need for the modification at the time of purchase.
Modifications to vehicles with unsuitable designs and configurations such as inadequate vehicle boot space for wheelchair or inappropriate seat height and depth which compromise transfer ability, will not necessarily be funded by DVA.The age and condition of the vehicle will be taken into consideration to ensure the car suitable for modifications.
Health Provider Hotline
Health Providers can contact DVA for any enquiries by calling the Provider Hotline: (Please press Option 1 when prompted for RAP).