"The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing."
Will becoming a bioptic driver change my disability status?
No. Your legal blindness status is not affected by what you can accomplish with a low vision aid. Your disability is based on your vision through your best corrected general eyewear, not through the bioptic system.
Will I be able to drive at night?
It depends on the state you are licensed in and the type of vision problems you have. Some states do not allow night driving. In Indiana, many bioptic drivers can obtain night driving privledges, but must have the recommendation by their low vision rehabilitation doctor, pass a nighttime behind-the-wheel driving test with a driving rehab specialist and obtain the approval through the BMV Medical Advisory Committee.
Will I be able to drive in other states?
Yes! Reciprocity laws in the United States are such that all states accept individuals with valid driver’s licenses to drive in their state even if the state they are driving in does not license bioptic drivers.
Will my auto insurance cover bioptic driving?
Yes! Once you have a valid driver’s license, your auto insurance will cover you. I am not aware of any bioptic driver having difficulty with insurance based on being a bioptic driver.
Will my insurance on my car be higher?
Your insurance rates reflect your driving history. If you had accidents or tickets before bioptic licensure, you could experience increased rates. Generally, we have not encountered significant differences between rates for bioptic and non-bioptic drivers.
How long does it take to become a bioptic driver?
The time period from the low vision examination to licensure can vary greatly depending on the state you are licensed in. In Indiana, it usually takes three to six months to complete fitting, training in our center, obtaining permits, completing the behind-the-wheel training and taking the BMV behind-the-wheel test. Many factors can affect this timetable. These including getting funding for the bioptic system through vocational rehabilitation programs, patient availability to complete training, backlogs in the driving rehabilitation specialist’s schedule and the time required for the BMV to issue permits.
Where can I be evaluated for bioptic eyewear?
Low vision specialists with experience in bioptic driving protocols can prescribe these systems. If you have questions on bioptic driving, please contact Dr. Laura Windsor at info@BiopticDrivingUSA.com or email@example.com. You may contact our offices at Indianapolis (317) 844-0919, Fort Wayne (260) 432-0575 or Hartford City (765) 348-2020.
What if I have an accident?
Any driver can have an accident. If you feel your vision was a factor, you should return to your doctor to recheck your status. One accident does not automatically effect your licensure. If however you had a DUI or showed significant negligence, your driving status could be reviewed, suspended or revoked.
What if I get a ticket?
One ticket will usually not affect your bioptic driving license. Repeated tickets could lead to a review of your driving status. When the state grants you the privilege of a bioptic driver’s license, you have a responsibility to help preserve this privilege for others to follow.
What if my vision changes?
If you have any change in vision, return to your doctor immediately. A change in vision does not mean you cannot continue to drive. It depends on the starting level of vision before your loss. For example, a patient with 20/80 vision could drop four lines on the visual acuity chart and still be within the requirement of 20/200 carrier visual acuity in Indiana. If a drop in vision is major, stop driving and return to your doctor immediately.
How often will I be required to take a driving test?
In Indiana, you normally take the driving test once. If there is no recent history of traffic accidents, DUIs or traffic tickets, you will usually not be asked to retake the test. In some states, there may be requirements for repeat tests. If you have a significant accident that is your fault or tickets for moving violations, you may be asked to retake a BMV behind-the-wheel test.
Can I insure my bioptic eyewear?
You can usually can have the cost of your bioptic system added as a rider on your home or apartment insurance. Talk with your insurance agent about this option.
Where can I learn if my state allows bioptic driving?
In this website you will find a section on state laws This will help you learn if your state allows bioptic driving. If you have specific questions you may email us at info@BiopticDrivingUSA.com or call us at any of our offices: Indianapolis (317) 844-0919, Fort Wayne (260) 432-0575 or Hartford City (765) 348-2020.
How long will I be able to drive?
Patients with stable moderate vision loss such as albinism may be able to drive for most of their life. Patient’s with progressive conditions must think of their bioptic driving license as a window of time. How big or how small depends on the stability of the condition and the skill and maturity of the patient.
The Low Vision Centers of Indiana
Richard L. Windsor O.D., F.A.A.O., D.P.N.A.P.
Craig Allen Ford O.D., F.A.A.O.
Laura Kathleen Windsor. O.D., F.A.A.O.