How to Obtain a Handicap Parking Permit

State by State Requirements

Handicapped Parking Permit
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Handicap parking is not a perk for having a chronic disease, such as arthritis—it's a necessity for many who live with pain and disability. It is not uncommon for disabled people to wait longer than they should to apply for a handicap parking permit for their car. A permit or placard entitles the approved person to park their vehicle in designated, close-in parking spots.

Disabled people may not realize that they are "eligible".

They may deny that their condition is debilitating to an extent that requires closer, handicap parking. They may underestimate the benefit of closer parking and how much energy it can save, allowing a disabled person to run errands, shop, go to doctor appointments, travel, or participate in other activities, without wearing themselves out within the first few minutes of arriving at their destination.

Handicap Parking Abusers Make It Difficult for Disabled People

The abuse of handicap parking permits may also be a disincentive. Too often people who are not entitled to park in handicap parking spots are found using them. With limited spots available, that makes it seem futile, but it's not. Handicap parking permits belong in the right hands.

People with invisible disabilities (disabilities that do not show outwardly) may fear being mistaken for an abuser of handicap parking privileges. This group of disabled persons often feels it is not worth being glared at or harassed, yet they are fully entitled to have a handicap parking permit if their doctor approves it.

How to Obtain a Handicap Parking Permit or Placard

If you have a disabling condition that makes you eligible for a handicap parking permit, talk to your doctor. Don't wait for your doctor to bring it up to you. Your doctor is very busy and it is unlikely that this is on his mind. Your doctor will not hesitate to sign the paperwork for you to get a handicap parking placard, though, if you are eligible.

Do you know what you need to do to obtain a handicap parking permit? There are subtle differences between the states regarding what is required. Some states charge a processing fee while other states offer handicap parking permits for free. Some states require a doctor's prescription along with an application.

We've compiled the information you need to obtain a handicap parking permit. Check below for your state's requirements. Some of the applications for handicap parking permits can easily be downloaded online. Note: Some links are in pdf format.


Department of Motor Vehicles for all 50 states

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