Are you a resident of New Mexico with a disability? Do you frequently drive, and find it difficult to find a suitable parking space for your vehicle? Or, perhaps you are just curious as to what disabilities qualify for disabled parking in New Mexico? At Dr Handicap, we are here to answer all your disabled parking related queries, so strap in and let us help you get to grips with the New Mexico disabled parking laws.

A disabled parking placard will allow you to occupy disabled parking spaces at many destinations in the state, which can be a huge relief for disabled drivers. Knowing that you will be able to access suitable parking spaces wherever you are going can ensure you feel more comfortable and relaxed on any journey you undertake. You will no longer need to walk long distances to the entrance of the store, for example, and if you need to use a wheelchair ramp, there are reserved aisles for this purpose, so you have plenty of space.

The benefits of a disabled parking permit are clear – but what are the qualifying conditions for a disabled parking permit in New Mexico?

Who Qualifies For Disabled Parking In New Mexico?

Image by Raban Haaijk on Unsplash: What are the New Mexico disabled parking laws?

According to the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division, the following medical conditions make you eligible for a permit and you may apply for a permit if you:

  • cannot walk 100 feet without stopping to rest
  • cannot walk without the use of a brace, cane or crutch or without assistance from another person, a prosthetic device, a wheelchair or other assistive device
  • are restricted by lung disease to such an extent that your forced respiratory volume, when exhaling for one second, when measured by spirometry, is less than one liter or the arterial oxygen tension is less than sixty millimeters on room air at rest
  • use portable oxygen
  • have a severe cardiac condition
  • are so severely limited in the ability to walk due to an arthritic, neurologic or orthopedic condition that you cannot ascend or descend more than 10 stair steps

One important distinction to make when it comes to New Mexico parking permits is the difference between permanent and temporary placards. If you suffer from one of the above conditions on a long-term basis and are unlikely to recover in future, the physician will most likely promote you as a candidate for a permanent placard.

If your condition is short-term or requires future evaluation to see if it has improved, you may receive a temporary placard. A temporary placard can last for up to 12 months, and the physician will decide how long you should have your temporary permit for when they add their certification to your application form.

If your condition does not change prior to the expiration of your placard you can apply for a new permit, but you will require re-certification from the physician in order to prove that your condition has not improved. This can be done using the same form as for your original application.

What Disabilities Qualify For Disabled Parking In New Mexico?

As you can see, most qualifying conditions are those which severely restrict the individual’s mobility. However, if you have a condition which impacts your ability to drive and park, it may be worth discussing these with a licensed medical physician, who could use their expertise to evaluate whether you may still be eligible for a permit. It is worth recognizing that many serious medical conditions are invisible, and just because your condition or illness is not visible all of the time does not mean you don’t qualify. Rules also vary on a state-by-state basis, so it is important to do your research prior to applying to make sure you are familiar with the regulations surrounding disabled parking in your state. 

How Do I Get A Handicap Placard In New Mexico?

Image by Steven HWG on Unsplash: If you suffer from reduced mobility, you should consider applying for a New Mexico disabled parking permit!

To apply for your New Mexico disabled parking placard, you need to follow these steps:

  1. Complete your online consultation with a licensed New Mexico physician with the help of Dr Handicap.
  2. Complete the form ‘Application For Certificate Of Eligibility For Parking Placard’, including your physician’s certification.
  3. Apply for your permit in-person at any New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division, using your completed form and bringing your ID.
  4. Receive your placard. You are now free to legally occupy disabled parking spaces in New Mexico (but please remember to always ensure you display your placard correctly, in such a way that it is easily seen by parking attendants to avoid any issues).
  5. Ensure you renew your placard prior to its expiration, so that you can continue to use disabled parking spaces without any hassle.

Featured image by Joonyeop Baek on unsplash: How to apply for a handicap placard in New Mexico