Léim ar aghaidh chuig an bpríomhábhar

Dáil Éireann díospóireacht -
Wednesday, 30 Jun 1999

Vol. 507 No. 3

Written Answers. - Disabled Drivers Scheme.

Richard Bruton


139 Mr. R. Bruton asked the Minister for Finance the reason fresh medical certification is required by his Department in respect of support schemes for persons with acute disabilities in view of the fact that the conditions concerned are not ones which will change; and if some form of permanent certification will be issued to these persons particularly in view of the considerable practical difficulties caused by the need to present for examination and certification. [16898/99]

I understand that the Deputy is referring to the tax reliefs available under the Disabled Drivers and Disabled Passengers (Tax Concessions) Regulations, 1994.

For the purpose of the above regulations, a disabled person is a person who fulfils one or more of the specified medical criteria, and who is in possession of a primary medical certificate to that effect issued by the appropriate senior area medical officer.

The regulations provide that where the Revenue Commissioners have reason to believe that the person named on a primary medical certificate does not fulfil any one of the specified criteria, Revenue shall refer that person for examination to the disabled drivers medical board of appeal, an independent body whose decision is final, which shall cancel the certificate if it considers it appropriate.

I am informed by the Revenue Commissioners that in the majority of cases, where a primary medical certificate has been received by them, no further certification is sought in respect of future claims. However, where there is reason to believe that a person named on a primary medical certificate may not still meet the specified medical criteria, Revenue shall refer that person to the board of appeal for reassessment.

To minimise the involvement of the board of appeal, which would be principally engaged in the processing of appeals against the refusal of the issue of primary medical certificates, and for the greater convenience of the person in question, I am informed that the Revenue Commissioners have on occasion asked for a fresh certificate to be furnished in support of a current claim as an alternative to the immediate referral of the case to the board of appeal for re-assessment.
I am also informed that requests for fresh primary medical certificates or referrals to the disabled drivers medical board of appeal have only been made in a very small number of cases. Of the five cases referred to the board of appeal for re-assessment, four have been assessed so far and the primary certificate has been cancelled in each case. One case is currently awaiting assessment. Fresh certificates were requested in four other cases. One fresh certificate was furnished; no further applications for relief were received from the remaining three.