" "

3 Ways To Make Sure Your Disabled Parking Permit Is Visible At All Times

So, you’ve gone through the application process for a disabled parking permit in your state, your permit has finally arrived, and you’re ready to use it. We’re sure you’re ready to make the most of your disabled parking permit, and that you realize how much easier it can make driving for those who are disabled. However, it’s super important to correctly display your permit while occupying a disabled parking place, otherwise you may run into problems with law enforcement, even risking a fine or other punishment.

Even if you have an obvious or visible disability, it’s important that you never forget to clearly display your permit. Below, we’ll go through the correct ways to make sure your disabled parking permit is visible at all times so you can avoid any issues with the law. (Quick note: If you’re looking to use your disabled parking permit while visiting another state, make sure to check out your destination state’s relevant parking rules and regulations – read this blog for more information!)

How do I display a disability placard?

We already know that when parked in a disabled parking space, your stationary vehicle should clearly display your permit. So, if you’re wondering “Where do I put my disabled parking permit, exactly?”, there are numerous ways to ensure you’re within the law.

Dr Handicap - wheelchair
Image by stevepb on Pixabay: What are the rules for displaying a disabled parking placard?

Hang your placard from your rear-view mirror

Typically, most states offer disabled parking placards or permits that can be hung from your rear-view mirror. Disability placards are often hooked at the top, allowing you to easily attach them to the mirror.

Simply park your vehicle and before leaving, make sure you display the placard by hanging it in this way. Never drive with your placard hanging like this, or you may risk obstructing your line of vision, which can be dangerous.

Clearly display your permit on your vehicle’s dashboard

Alternatively, you can usually leave your disabled parking permit in an obvious location on your dashboard – just make sure it can be seen easily from the outside, so that parking attendants can quickly look in and spot it.

Get disabled parking plates

Many states offer disabled parking plates for those with permanent disabilities. The benefit of these is that they are constantly visible, as they are attached to the outside of your vehicle and therefore you don’t need to worry about constantly ensuring they’re displayed when you park. However, while many states offer this option to disabled drivers, it often incurs a fee, whereas placards or regular permits may not. This is worth taking into account too – although the fee is minimal, it could be an obstacle for some applicants.

Disabled veterans can usually apply for disabled parking plates – the cost of these varies per state. It can be anywhere from $1 to $20. You will typically be given the option to personalize your disabled parking plates too, should you want to do so, but be aware that this also incurs an additional fee.

It’s important to take into account the rules for displaying a disabled parking placard. If you’re a disabled driver with a permit, never allow someone else to use your permit, even if you share a vehicle, as this is a breach of the law. The benefit of having a placard rather than plates is that you can use your placard even if you are driving another car.

Your disabled parking permit will always allow you to park in reserved disabled parking, but some states go even further in what they offer to disabled drivers (such as free metered parking), so make sure to check the rules out in your own state to see what you are entitled to.

Dr Handicap - disabled parking sign on wall
Image by StephanieAlbert on Pixabay: How do I display a disability placard so that I can legally park in disabled spaces?

Uh-oh, I forgot to put my disability placard up and got a ticket!

This is unfortunate, but mistakes happen. If you simply forgot to put your disability placard up and were issued a fine, you generally have two options: simply pay the fine and be more careful in future, or contest it. However, whether this is possible really depends on the state.

Your best bet would be to contact local law enforcement and explain the situation to them, showing them your valid disabled parking placard. Each state differs in their approach to this, so it really has to be handled on a case-by-case basis. In some states, the court may waive the fee or cancel the ticket, but other states may not be so lenient.

The important thing is to try to develop a method for remembering to hang up your placard each and every time you park. By making it a habit, you’re sure to remember to always display your disabled parking permit correctly and avoid any problems.

Featured image by Nicolas Torres on Unsplash

Can I Park In Residential Parking With A Disability Placard?

Disability placard holders need to know the rules around handicap parking in their state. Understanding what your entitlements are as a disabled placard holder means you can get the most value out of the parking program and avoid breaking any rules.

When everybody knows and abides by the rules, the disabled parking system works smoothly and benefits all disability permit holders. One important area that can cause some confusion is residential parking – so can you park in residential parking with a disability placard? Let’s find out.

Each State Has Its Own Disabled Parking Rules

It’s crucial to remember that all US states, and even jurisdictions within states, have their own disabled parking rules. All states adhere to the federal Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) disabled parking guidelines, but while each jurisdiction abides by ADA law, the specific details of can vary depending on where you are in the country. Always make sure you know the rules in the specific area you live or intend to travel to.

cars parked on street spaces
Image by Arcaion on Pixabay: Can you park anywhere with a disability placard?

Can You Park Anywhere With A Disability Placard?

A disability placard does not entitle its holder to park just anywhere. Disability placards entitle their holder to park in designated disabled parking spaces anywhere in the US (as well as in several foreign countries). These spaces are marked with the International Symbol of Access.

Permit holders are also entitled to park in metered, on-street spaces for free and for an unlimited time in most jurisdictions. However, there are plenty of places that disability placard holders are not entitled to park.

Can You Get A Parking Ticket With A Disability Placard?

Yes, disability placard holders can get a parking ticket if they park in a place in which it’s illegal to park. It’s also an offense for somebody to use a disability placard that is not their own.

Where Can You Not Park With A Disability Placard?

It’s illegal for disabled permit holders to park in the following locations:

  • Any zone for which state law prohibits stopping, parking, or standing of all vehicles.
  • Any area that state law reserves for special types of vehicles, such as ambulance loading bays and street vending businesses.
  • The loading/unloading areas of designated ‘disabled’ spaces. These areas are marked by blue crosshatch striping.
  • Privately owned or leased residential parking bays.

Can I Park In Residential Parking With A Disability Placard?

It is illegal for a disability permit holder to park in a residential parking space if the space is owned or leased by a specific person or address that has paid to have sole custody of that space.

Can I Park In Private Disabled Parking Bays With A Disability Placard?

Disabled permit holders can park in private disabled parking bays under certain circumstances:

  • Permit holders can park in disabled bays in private residential garages if they live in the building, or are visiting somebody who lives in the building that the garage serves.
  • Disabled parking spaces on private property can be reserved for employees and patrons of a business that owns the property. In this case, permit holders who are not connected to the business that owns the lot cannot park in the private disabled bays.

Disability residential parking bays that are located on public streets outside homes can be used by any disabled permit holders, because a disability permit entitles its holder to park in any designated disabled space. But remember: only park in residential disabled bays when absolutely necessary – for example, if you are visiting somebody who lives nearby.

cars parked on street
Image by Parker Gibbons on Unsplash: Can I get residential disabled parking?

Can I Get Residential Disabled Parking?

You can apply for residential disabled parking near your home, either on-street or in your private parking garage. To apply for a residential disabled parking space near your home, you should contact your local disabled parking authorities or city planning authorities. Just remember that the disabled space that is installed near your home will be for any disabled permit holder to use and you will not be able to reserve it.

How Do You Apply For A Disability Placard?

If you don’t yet have a disability placard, you can apply for one by visiting the Dr. Handicap online clinic. At the clinic, you will have a video consultation with a medical professional who will certify your Department of Motor Vehicles application.

Featured image by Daniel Frank on Pexels

Is There Anywhere I Can’t Park With My Disabled Parking Permit?

Can you park anywhere with a disability placard? This is a question that gets asked a lot – especially by people who are relatively new to disabled parking, or who are about to apply for their very first disabled permit.

Today we will explore how disabled parking rules and regulations can vary state by state, and find out exactly where a disabled parking permit entitles its holder to park.

Is Disabled Parking A Federal Law?

Yes, disabled parking is a federal law. The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) specifies the main details that all states must adhere to in their disabled parking programs.

Disabled Parking Rules Vary By State

While all states’ disabled parking programs adhere to ADA rules, all states, and even jurisdictions within states, have their own disabled parking programs. Often, these different programs vary in their fine details. For this reason, it’s crucial that you research and understand the specific disabled parking rules in your area and in any area you intend to visit.

double lines parking space
Image by aitoff on Pixabay: Is there anywhere I can’t park with my disabled parking permit?

Is There Anywhere I Can’t Park With My Disabled Parking Permit?

So, can people with a disabled parking permit park anywhere? The short answer to this question is… no, they can’t. People who hold a disabled parking permit still need to adhere to local parking laws.

Disabled parking permits do not entitle their holder to disobey state or local parking laws – nor do they necessarily exempt their holder from paying parking fees.

It’s illegal for disabled permit-holders to park in the following places:

  • In a zone where the law or ordinance prohibits stopping, parking, or standing of all vehicles.
  • In a zone the law or ordinance reserves for special types of vehicles, such as vehicles involved in commercial loading or passenger loading.
  • In a zone the law or ordinance reserves for the parking of a vehicle that is involved in the operation of a street vending business.
  • In the loading and unloading area of a disabled space (these areas are marked by blue crosshatch striping).

Some states, such as California, operate a color-coded curb system. In California, disabled permit holders may not park:

  • In spaces marked with a crosshatched pattern next to a parking space with the International Symbol of Access (wheelchair symbol). These spaces are for wheelchair and wheelchair lift access.
  • Next to red curbs, which indicate no stopping, standing, or parking.
  • Next to yellow curbs, which are for commercial vehicles to load and unload passengers or freight.
  • Next to white curbs, which are for loading and unloading passengers or depositing mail in an adjacent mailbox.

Where Can You Park With A Disability Placard?

In all US states and jurisdictions, a disability placard holder can park for free and for an unlimited time in any designated disabled parking space. These spaces are signposted with the International Symbol of Access. In several jurisdictions, permit holders are also entitled to park in metered, on-street spaces for free for varying amounts of time.

Can You Park Free At A Meter With A Disability Placard?

Texas and Washington State are typical of most states in allowing disabled permit holders to park for free and for an unlimited time in metered, time-restricted on-street spaces. In several states, such as Virginia, permit holders can park for up to four hours in metered or time-restricted spaces without paying a fee.

Some states, such as Illinois, have different placards for people who are meter-exempt and people who are disabled but are not meter-exempt. In New York City, you can park for free at most curbsides on city streets if you have an NYC Parking Permit for People with Disabilities (PPPD). These permits are available to residents and visitors to New York City who are permanently disabled.

on street parking
Image by Yu on Unsplash: Can you park free at a meter with a disability placard?

Residential Disabled Parking Spaces

In all states, you can request a disabled parking space be installed near your home.

In some states, such as Pennsylvania, each local municipality is responsible for installing requested residential disabled spaces in front of homes.

In other jurisdictions, for example, the Chicago metropolitan area, there is an official program for applying for residential disabled spaces.

Check The Disabled Parking Rules In Your Jurisdiction

As you can see, disabled parking rules can be quite different in different jurisdictions. It’s important to always be sure you know the rules in your jurisdiction and in any jurisdiction you will be visiting.

How To Get A Disabled Parking Permit

You can get a disabled parking permit by visiting the Dr. Handicap online clinic. There, you’ll have a telemedicine consultation with a medical professional who will verify your suitability for disabled parking and complete a DMV application for your state.

Featured image by Erik Mclean on Pexels

Can A Caregiver Use A Handicap Parking Permit?

Many disabled parking permit holders have caregivers. These may be family members, friends, or professional caregivers. Caregivers provide invaluable assistance to millions of disabled Americans.

Often, caregivers assist disabled permit holders to get from A to B, accompanying them on outings and assisting with transport. So can a caregiver use a handicap parking permit? And if so, under what circumstances?

Can A Caregiver Use A Handicap Parking Permit?

The caregiver of a disabled person does not qualify to get a disabled parking permit for themselves unless they also have a qualifying disability. A caregiver can use a handicap parking permit, however – but only under specific circumstances.

person in wheelchair with caregiver
Image by Judita Tamošiūnaitė on Pexels: Can a caregiver use a handicap parking permit?

Under What Circumstances Can Disability Carers Use Handicap Placards?

The caregiver of a disabled person can use a handicap placard if:

  • The person they are transporting is a handicap parking permit holder
  • They are currently accompanying the permit holder
  • The permit holder is in possession of their permit

Basically, because a caregiver does not qualify for a permit unless they themselves have a qualifying disability, they can only use the permit that is held by the person they are caring for, and only when they are transporting that person.

Who Can Use A Disabled Placard?

Only the official holder of a disabled parking permit can use that permit. The caregiver of a permit holder can use the permit holder’s permit on their own vehicle when they are transporting the disabled person.

Who Is Allowed The Special Privileges Of A Disabled Plate Or Placard?

A disabled parking permit gives its holder special privileges. This is to make the life of the permit holder easier by making public buildings, and amenities more accessible. These privileges include the use of the handicap parking infrastructure and the use of merited parking spaces for free. These privileges are only for disabled permit holders.

What Privileges Do Disabled Permits Allow Their Holders?

Disabled parking permits entitle their holders to the following privileges:

  • Permit holders are entitled to park in designated disabled parking spaces (spaces marked with the International Symbol of Access)
  • In most jurisdictions, permit holders are entitled to park in metered, on-street spaces for free and for an extended or unlimited amount of time
  • Permit holders are often entitled to have a disabled space installed in front of their home

Is There A Disabled Parking Permit For Caregivers?

There is no such thing as a disabled parking permit for caregivers. However, most states have an “Organization” or “Institution” disabled parking permit. These are for organizations or institutions that regularly transport disabled people.

What Types Of Disabled Parking Permits Are Available?

Each state issues its own disabled parking permits. All states issue versions of the following types of disabled parking permits:

  • Permanent disabled parking permit
  • Temporary disabled parking permit
  • Permanent disabled parking license plate
  • Disabled Veterans license plate
  • Organization or institution disabled parking permit

Who Issues Disabled Parking Permits?

Disabled parking permits are issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in each state.

two people traveling in car
Image by Darwin Vegher on Unsplash: Is there a disabled parking permit for caregivers? No, but there are circumstances under which they can use disabled parking.

How Do You Apply For A Handicap Parking Permit?

You can apply for a handicap parking permit by submitting an application form to your local handicap parking authorities, usually the local DMV. The form should be signed by a state-licensed medical professional. You can have a consultation with a professional at the Dr. Handicap online clinic.

What Are The Qualifying Conditions For A Disabled Parking Permit?

The qualifying conditions for a disabled parking permit vary slightly by state. In most states, the following list of qualifying conditions apply:

  • An inability to walk 200 feet without needing to stop to rest
  • An inability to walk without the use of or assistance from an assistance device
  • Lung disease
  • A cardiac condition
  • An arthritic, neurological, or orthopedic condition that severely impairs mobility
  • The use of portable oxygen
  • Legal blindness

Who Can Verify An Application For A Handicap Parking Permit?

In most states, the following state-licensed medical professionals can verify an application for a disabled parking permit:

  • Physician
  • Physician’s assistant
  • Advanced practice nurse
  • Chiropractor
  • Optometrist
  • Surgeon

Where Are Handicap Parking Permits Valid?

Handicap parking permits from all states are valid in the following jurisdictions:

  • All US states
  • All US overseas territories
  • Canada
  • Mexico
  • EU
  • UK
  • Australia
  • New Zealand
  • Japan

Featured image by Stefano Intintoli on Unsplash

Can An Ambulance Park In A Handicap Spot?

Who can park in disabled parking spaces? We know that disabled parking permit holders are entitled to park in handicap spaces, but are there any exceptions to the rules for disabled parking?

Disabled parking space rules and regulations are enshrined in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Disabled parking spots exist in every US state and are located as close as possible to the buildings and amenities they serve. These spaces usually offer the quickest access to public areas.

Handicap spaces exist to improve the lives of people with various disabilities and mobility issues. In every US state, handicap spaces are available to be used by a disabled permit holder from any US state, as well as holders of several overseas disabled parking permits.

But what are the exceptions for parking in a handicap spot? Can an ambulance park in a handicap spot under certain circumstances? Is it a criminal offense to park in a disabled bay if you do not have a disabled permit in your vehicle, and how can you report illegal handicap parking? Below, we’ll answer all of these important questions and more.

Can An Ambulance Park In A Handicap Spot?

The laws about ambulance parking vary state by state. In most states, an ambulance can park in a handicap spot under certain specific circumstances.  If an ambulance is transporting a disabled person, it can park in a handicap spot for up to 15 minutes. If it is on an emergency call, it can park in a handicap spot for a limited time. In most other circumstances, an ambulance cannot park in a disabled parking space.

ambulances parked outside hospital
Image by ArtisticOperations on Pixabay: Can an ambulance park in a handicap spot?

Exceptions For Parking In A Handicap Spot

So, what are the rules for what drivers and vehicles can legally park in disabled parking spots? The only vehicles that can legally park in handicap parking spaces are:

  • A vehicle that is currently being used by a disabled parking permit holder, while the permit is in the vehicle
  • A vehicle that has a permit because it transports disabled people, while it is on official business and transporting disabled people
  • Ambulances when they are transporting disabled people, for up to 15 minutes
  • Emergency vehicles when they are on “hot calls”.

Is It A Criminal Offence To Park In A Disabled Bay?

Yes, it is a criminal offense to park in a disabled bay if you do not hold a disabled parking permit.

How To Report Illegal Handicap Parking

If you see illegal parking in a handicap parking bay, you can report it by taking the vehicle’s registration and:

  • Flagging down a parking attendant or police in the area
  • Calling your local police non-emergency line
  • Calling your local parking enforcement team
  • Submitting photos to the Parking Mobility app.

Rules For Disabled Parking

The rules for disabled parking are:

  • Only permit holders may park in disabled parking spots.
  • It is illegal to use a handicap permit that is not your own.
  • There must be a legally required number of disabled parking spaces in every area and parking lot.
  • Disabled parking spaces must be clearly signposted.
  • Disabled parking spaces must be of the correct size and dimensions and located as close as possible to an accessible entrance to the building or amenity they serve.
parking spaces
Image by Binyamin Mellish on Pexels: What are the rules for disabled parking?

How Can You Get A Disabled Parking Permit?

If you do not yet have a disabled parking permit, the best way to get one is to visit the Dr. Handicap online clinic. You will have a consultation with a medical professional in your state who will verify your disability and complete an application form for disabled parking. You can then submit the application to your local disabled parking authorities. (Disabled parking authorities are different in each state, but it is usually the local DMV.)

What Types Of Disabled Parking Permits Are Available?

You can get the following types of disabled parking permits in most states:

  • Permanent disabled parking placard
  • Permanent disabled parking license plate
  • Temporary disabled parking placard
  • Disabled Veterans license plate
  • Organizational disabled parking permit

Where Are Handicap Parking Permits Valid?

Handicap parking permits are valid in all US states, as well as in all US overseas territories and several foreign countries including Canada, Mexico, UK, EU, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan.

Featured image by Obi Onyeador on Unsplash