FM/CFS/ME RESOURCES - Disabled Parking Permits Worldwide

 

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DISABILITY PARKING PERMITS WORLDWIDE

A disabled parking permit, also known as a handicapped permit, disabled placard, disabled badge and "Blue Badge" in the European Union, is displayed upon parking a vehicle carrying a person whose mobility would be otherwise significantly impaired by one or more of age, illness, disability or infirmity. The permit allows exemption from street parking charges in some places and is used to park within dedicated disabled parking spaces reserved for people who have satisfied requirements to receive the placard.

In 1978, the ECMT Council of Ministers agreed that all Member Countries of the ECMT would grant the same parking concessions to people with disabilities as they offered their own nationals. These concessions usually allowed special parking in areas reserved for people with disabilities, or allowed longer parking periods or exemptions from charges.

This Resolution was updated and extended in scope in 1997. In addition to all the Member countries of ECMT this Resolution now applies also to the ECMT Associated Countries (Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea, New Zealand and United States). This means that disabled motorists from all ECMT Member and Associate countries are now entitled to the same parking concessions as nationals in all ECMT Countries. The only condition is the display of a badge showing the international wheelchair symbol.

In 1998 the EU adopted a Resolution along the same lines for the Member countries of the EU. The badges to be displayed are to be standardized to facilitate recognition and to avoid difficulties at local level.


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Australia

The statewide Disabled Persons' Parking Scheme currently operates in Victoria varying parking concessions based on the applicant's need for assistance.

Under category one, permit holders with significant intellectual or ambulatory disabilities who meet the eligibility criteria are entitled to park a vehicle in a bay reserved for disabled motorists only, for a specified time (upon payment of an initial parking fee, if applicable).

Under category two, permit holders who require rest breaks when walking may park a vehicle in any ordinary area or bay for twice the specified time (upon payment of any initial parking fee, if applicable).

Category two permit holders are not permitted to park in disabled persons' parking bays.


Types of Permits

Code A for a disabled driver/passenger
Code B for a disabled passenger
Code C for an organisation providing a transport service for people with disabilities
Code D for a temporary permit.


Who is Eligible?

Category One

  • A person may hold only one disabled person's parking permit and be eligible for it: if a Medical Practitioner indicates that he/she has significant ambulatory disability such that he/she is required to use a complex walking aid that prevents access to a vehicle in a standard sized parking bay, or he/she cannot access a vehicle in a standard sized bay (Code A or B). A complex walking aid is defined as an aid which has more than one contact point with the ground.
    OR

  • if a Medical Practitioner indicates that he/she suffers from a condition which is critical or dangerous to their health, which may be either chronic or acute, and affects the applicant's ambulatory ability to such an extent that walking distances is injurious (as opposed to inconvenient) (Code A or B). A significant permanent ambulatory disability is a disability that is not likely to improve in the person's lifespan (Code A or B). A significant long-term ambulatory disability is a disability that is not likely to improve within six months (Code D).
    OR

  • if a Specialist Medical Practitioner or a Clinical Psychologist indicates that he/she has a significant intellectual disability such that he/she is an extreme danger to himself/herself and others in a public place without continuous attendance by a caregiver (Code B).

Category Two

A person may only hold one disabled persons' parking permit and be eligible for it:

  • if a Medical Practitioner indicates that he/she has a significant ambulatory disability or severe illness which does not affect their ability to walk distances but will require rest breaks when continuous walking is undertaken.

Public car parks offer no concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card.


How to Apply

Application forms are available from municipal councils. Permits will only be issued to permanent residents of a municipality. The first part of the application form must be completed by you or your agent. The rest of the application form should be completed by the Specialist Medical Practitioner or Clinical Psychologist for intellectual disabilities and the Medical Practitioner for all other disabilities. You or your agent are responsible for any fees incurred in the completion of the form. Your authority for the Medical Practitioner/ specialist Medical Practitioner/Clinical Psychologist to release medical information is to be signed and given to him/her. An organisation providing a transport service to a disabled is required to complete a separate application form.


Traveling Interstate

Permits can be used anywhere in Australia. Parking concessions may be different in other states or territories and you should check the conditions applying to the Disabled Persons Parking Scheme in the state or territory you intend to visit. A brochure giving some details regarding interstate Schemes is available from your local council.

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Austria

General

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with a wheelchair symbol. Do not park there if the space is marked with a name or vehicle registration number.


Parking on Roads

Do not park on roads where waiting is prohibited. You may park without time limit on roads where parking is free but restricted by time. In most areas you must pay to park on roads where payment is required. Check locally. You may drive and park in pedestrian zones, but only during vehicle delivery access times. Check locally.


Parking in Car Parks

Public car parks offer no concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card.


Contact


Ms. Liliana PREROWSKY
Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology
International Department of Transport
Department II/A/2
Radetzkystrasse 2
A-1031 Vienna
Tel. +43-1 711 62 1207
E-mail: liliana.prerowsky@bmv.gv.at

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Belgium

General

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with a wheelchair symbol.


Parking on Roads

Do not park on roads where waiting is prohibited. You may park without time limit on roads where parking is free but restricted by time. In most areas you may park free of charge on roads where payment is required, for example at parking meters. Check locally. Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones.


Parking in Car Parks

Some car parks allow vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card to be parked free of charge but only in specific parking bays marked for disabled people. Check with car park notices or ask an attendant.

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Canada

In Canada, disabled parking permits bearing the international wheelchair symbol are widely recognized provided they are officially issued.

Travelers who have disabled parking permits from other countries may be able to use them in Canada. The permits I am referring to must be official ones, not home made.

I have used the following terms interchangeably to describe the disabled parking placard:

  • blue badge
  • handicapped parking badge
  • disabled parking badge
  • badge
  • placard
  • parking pass
  • parking permit

There is no national level scheme for issuing and regulating the use of disabled parking permits. The blue and white international wheelchair symbol is used in Canada on the actual parking placard (called a badge in some countries).

The recognition of handicapped parking permits is at the provincial level. In Alberta, for example, you can go to a local registry office and for a fee purchase a temporary Alberta permit.

In practice, few Canadian travelers from other provinces would consider doing this.

The reality is that as long as you are not abusing the system, an official parking pass from another jurisdiction should be quite acceptable, provided it is officially issued and has the universal symbol on it.


Where It Would Be Advisable To Check More Carefully

If you intend to drive in the downtown areas of the major cities (Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver), and to attend events at popular venues (e.g. sports arenas, concert halls), and where disabled parking might be in high demand (e.g. hospitals, shopping centres), then it would be a good idea to contact the local parking authority to get their advice on whether your parking permit will be recognized.

For most of the country, we are fortunate in Canada in having a reasonable amount of parking and if you can travel at non-peak hours in particular, you should have no problems.


For Visitors From The United States

The recognition of the handicapped parking badge from the US is probably covered under a bilateral agreement, but I was unable to find one (yet). In practice, if your permit looks like a Canadian one - white on blue, using the international symbol for a wheelchair - the local authorities are likely to respect it.

This does not mean you should make your own placard! To be official the placard has to have been issued officially and should appear so.


For Visitors from European Union Countries

The article Disabled Parking Permits in Europe explains that holders of Canadian (and other) disabled parking permits may use them in the EU.

When the EU adopted this resolution, the various Canadian provinces agreed to implement it, as the issuance of disabled parking permits is done by the provinces and, in the north, by the municipalities (not by the territorial governments).

Thus, if you come from anywhere in the EU, bring your parking permit and it should be honored. There are some differences in the exact rights a blue parking badge gives you in Canada.

For a description of how Canadian disabled parking permits operate, and a brief note on how they differ from permits elsewhere, please read this Executive Summary, and in particular the section on Parking badge policies in Canada.

The typical practice in Canada is that if you have an official blue handicapped parking badge with the international wheelchair symbol on it, hanging from your vehicle's rear view mirror, you may park the vehicle in one of the marked, designated handicapped parking spots. These are usually at the main entrance of the building or site you are visiting.

As is the case everywhere, the disabled parking spots can be in short supply at peak hours. If you are concerned, try to research the destination, on the internet or by phone, before going there.


For Visitors from Elsewhere

The same general advice applies as for the USA. If you have a standard placard, officially issued, bring it to Canada.


Provinces/Territories Permit Information
Alberta Website: www.transportation.alberta.ca/793.htm
Contact Number:  780-427-7013
E-mail: Trans.Contact.Us.m@gov.ab.ca
British Columbia Website: www.sparc.bc.ca/parking-permit
Contact Number:  604-718-7744
E-mail:  permits@sparc.bc.ca
Manitoba Website:  http://smd.mb.ca/parking_permit_program.aspx
Contact Number:  204-975-3250
E-mail:  info@smd.mb.ca
New Brunswick Website:  www.gnb.ca/0048
Contact Number:  506-444-3000
E-mail:  pcsdp@gnb.ca
Newfoundland & Labrador Website: www.gs.gov.nl.ca/gs/mr/dimpp.stm
Contact Number:  709-729-7466
E-mail:  disabledparkpermits@gov.nl.ca
Northwest Territories The municipalities of Yellowknife, Hay River, Inuvik and Fort Smith participate in the Agreement on Reciprocal Recognition of Parking Badges
Website:  www.nwtability.ca
Contact Number:  867-873-8320
E-mail:  nwtcpdadmin@yk.com
Nova Scotia Website:  www.gov.ns.ca/snsmr/paal/rmv/paal277.asp
Contact Number:  902-424-5851
E-mail:  askus@gov.ns
Nunavut The Government of Nunavut does not participate in the Agreement on Reciprocal Recognition of Parking Badges. The capital City of Iqaluit provides disabled parking spaces.
Contact Number:  867-979-5600
E-mail: r.mugford@city.iqaluit.nu.ca
Ontario Website (English):  www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/dandv/vehicle/ app.htm
(French):  www.mto.gov.on.ca/french/dandv/vehicle/app.htm
Contact Number:  416-235-2999
E-mail (English): www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/feedback/lao.htm
(French): www.mto.gov.on.ca/french/feedback/lao.htm
Prince Edward Island Website:  www.peicod.pe.ca
Contact Number:  902-892-9149
E-mail:  peicod@peicod.pe.ca
Québec Website (English): www.saaq.gouv.qc.ca/en/miscellany/parking_permit/index.php
(French): www.saaq.gouv.qc.ca/envrac/vign_station/index.php
Contact Number:  514-873-7620 (Montréal region)br /> E-mail (English): https://secure.saaq.gouv.qc.ca/en/reach_us/secure_email.php
(French): https://secure.saaq.gouv.qc.ca/joindre/courriel_securise.php
Saskatchewan  Website:  www.abilitiescouncil.sk.ca/main/html/services/parking/index.shtml
Contact Number:  306-374-4448
E-mail:  parkingprogram@abilitiescouncil.sk.ca
Yukon The City of Whitehorse participates in the Agreement on Reciprocal Recognition of Parking Badges.
Contact Number:  867-668-8317
E-mail: bylaw.services@whitehorse.ca

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Denmark

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with the wheelchair symbol. Do not park there if the space is marked with a name or vehicle registration number.

Parking discs are used in Denmark and can be bought wherever motor fuels are sold. Whenever drivers park in areas with time limits they are required to set the disc. However, vehicles may display discs issued outside Denmark.


Parking on Roads

You may park for 15 minutes on roads where waiting is prohibited (see the European traffic signs details).

The following time limits apply generally to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card:

  • where parking is limited to 15-30 minutes, you may park for up to an hour.
  • where parking is limited to 3 hours, you may park for an unlimited time.
  • May park in general on roads with parking meters only, park if the driver pay according to how long the vehicle is parked. Though in Copenhagen, vehicles displaying a disabled parking card may park free of charge in public parking zones. Check locally.
  • May be allowed to drive and park in pedestrian zones. Check locally.

You may be allowed to drive and park in pedestrian zones, but this will be only during specific vehicle access times, and for a maximum of 15 minutes. Check locally.


Parking in Car Parks

In car parks where payment is required, the driver must generally pay according to how long the vehicle is parked. Though in Copenhagen, vehicles displaying a disabled person parking card may park free of charge in public zones. Check locally.

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Finland

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with a wheelchair symbol. Do not park there if the space is marked with a name or vehicle registration number.


Parking on Roads

  • You may park on roads where waiting is prohibited.
  • You may park without time limit on roads where parking is free but restricted by time.
  • You may park free of charge and without time limit on roads with parking meters or pay-and-display parking.
  • You may be allowed to drive and park in pedestrian zones. Check locally.

Parking in Car Parks

Vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card may be parked free of charge and beyond time limits.

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France

Although there is a national system of parking concessions, local variations can apply. Check locally. In Paris, vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking car may be parked on roads free of charge.

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with a wheelchair symbol on a vertical sign.

As a general rule, a wheelchair symbol is drawn on the pavement but this feature is not imposed by regulation.


Parking on Roads

  • Do not park on roads where waiting is prohibited.
  • You may park beyond the time limit on roads where parking is free but restricted by time.
  • You must pay to park on roads where payment is required (except in Paris).
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones.

Parking in Car Parks

Car parks do not generally offer concessions to vehicle displaying a disabled person's parking car.


Reciprocal Recognition

Parking Badge: EU model. The recognition of badges from other EU member States was established in 2000. Badge holders from other European countries have the same parking concessions as French badge holders. France has implemented ECMT Resolution 97/4.

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Germany

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with a road sign (wheelchair symbol). Do not, however, park on spaces marked with a parking card number reserving them for certain disabled people.

Parking on Roads

  • You may park for up to 3 hours on roads where parking is prohibited - also in no-parking zones.
  • You may exceed the allowed parking period on roads where parking is restricted by time - also in restricted-parking zones.
  • You may park free of charge and without time limit on roads with parking meters or pay-and-display parking.
  • You may park up to 3 hours in resident's parking areas.
  • You may park outside the marked spaces in traffic-calmed areas without obstructing the traffic.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones unless it is expressly permitted by local concessions. Check locally. For even if it is permitted, you are only allowed to enter and park there during specific vehicle access times.

The above regulations apply unless there is another parking facility available at a reasonable distance. The maximum parking period is 24 hours.


Parking in Private Car Parks

Ask the car park attendant on the spot whether disabled people are granted parking privileges.


Reciprocal Recognition

Germany uses the EU model badge. ECMT Resolution has not been implemented. In Germany, the Federal States (Bundesländer) are the appropriate authorities for the surveillance of road traffic and they have rejected this in the past. Reasons included likely difficulties caused by varying documents/badges (different style etc.) and possible language difficulties.

Recommendation for disabled people from associated ECMT countries is to get in touch with the local authorities responsible for road traffic at their place of residence, to see what kind of special parking permission is suitable or if the parking badge of the home country is sufficient.

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Greece

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with a wheelchair symbol. Do not park there if the space is marked with a person's name or vehicle registration number.

There are no concessions for street parking or parking in car parks.

You may park only where parking is permitted, and you must pay parking charges and observe time limits.

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Iceland

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol. Do not park there if the space is marked with a person's name or vehicle registration number.


Parking on Roads

  • Do not park on roads where waiting is prohibited.
  • Fees and time limit concessions for vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card vary. Check locally.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones.

Parking in Car Parks

Car parks do not generally give concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card, although some local variations may apply. Check locally.

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Republic of Ireland

Disabled Person's Parking Cards (also known as European Parking Cards or Disabled Parking Badge) are available to people living in Ireland with certain disabilities and those who are registered blind, whether they are drivers or passengers. The parking card can be used by a disabled person in any vehicle in which he or she is travelling. This means that a disabled person who is being driven at different times by different people can bring the parking card with himself or herself and display it in the appropriate vehicle. The parking card is valid for 2 years from date of issue. Generally, the card is not issued to anyone under 5 years of age.

The parking card scheme for disabled drivers and passengers applies to public car parking areas only. However, the scheme also enables private car parks, supermarkets, etc., to more effectively monitor parking in areas that they have designated for people with disabilities. You can read more about parking facilitites for people with disabilities in Ireland. Provision for the disabled parking card scheme is set down in Section 35 of the Road Traffic Act 1994 and SI 182/1997 Road Traffic (Traffic and Parking) Regulations 1997.

Disabled (also known as 'European') Parking Cards can be used by disabled people within the 27 member states of the EU and are also recognised in the US and Canada. This means that when you travel abroad, you can bring your European Parking Card with you. However, it is important to remember that you must observe the motoring laws and restrictions on parking in other countries.

The parking card scheme is administered by the Disabled Drivers Association and the Irish Wheelchair Association. Apply in writing for the card to either organisation.


Rules

You will automatically qualify for a parking card if you hold a Primary Medical Certificate (exempting you from payment of VAT, motor tax and Vehicle Registration Tax), however, you must still formally apply for the parking card.

Local Health Offices of the Health Service Executive (HSE) process applications for a Primary Medical Certificate. If the HSE refuses your application for a Primary Medical Certificate, you may appeal the refusal to the Disabled Drivers Medical Board of Appeal, National Rehabilitation Hospital, Rochestown Avenue, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin.


Parking Offences and Disabled Spaces

It is an offence to park a vehicle in a disabled parking space unless you have a current, valid Disabled Parking Card. If you illegally park in a disabled parking space, you will incur a fine of 80 euro, with 28 days to pay. If you fail to pay that fine within 28 days, the fine increases to 120 euro. More information on parking offences is available here.

Both traffic wardens and members of An Garda Siochana have the power to request and inspect a parking card to ensure it it not being misused.


Rates

he parking card costs €25. The fee is the same irrespective of whether it is a new application, or a renewal.

Lost or misplaced cards cost €50 to replace.

Illegally parking in a disabled parking space will result in an €80 fine, rising to €120 if unpaid within 28 days.


How to Apply

To obtain an application form for a parking card, write to either the Disabled Drivers Association or the Irish Wheelchair Association enclosing a stamped self-addressed envelope. In your letter you should give details about your disability and how it affects your mobility. If you have a Primary Medical Certificate you should mention it.

The application form must be completed and certified by your doctor and must be countersigned by a Garda.

To obtain a Primary Medical Certificate obtain an application form from your Local Health Office. You must complete the application form and return it to the Senior Medical Officer of the Local Health Office. The Senior Medical Officer then appoints a HSE doctor to visit your home and carry out an assessment of the level of your disability. If you satisfy the requirements, you are then granted a Primary Medical Certificate by the Health Service Executive (HSE).

Applications to have lost/misplaced cards replaced should be made in writing directly to either the Disabled Drivers Association or the Irish Wheeelchair Association (whichever organisation issued the card).


Where To Apply

  • Disabled Drivers Association
    Dept.:
    Parking Card Section
    Ballindine
    Claremorris
    Mayo
    IRELAND
    Tel: (094) 936 4054
    Fax: (094) 936 4336
    Homepage: http://www.ddai.ie
    Email: info@ddai.ie
    Wheelchair Access:
  • National Mobility Centre
    Dept.:
    Irish Wheelchair Association
    Ballinagappa Road
    Clane
    Kildare
    IRELAND
    Tel: +353 (0)45 893094
    Homepage: http://www.iwa.ie
    Email: maats@iwa.ie
    Wheelchair Access:

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Italy

Cars parking in disabled parking spaces must display the blue disabled parking card or a European Community blue badge. Contact the local town hall for information on obtaining a blue badge.

The blue badge is a standardised European Community disabled person's parking permit which provides parking entitlements to badge holders in all complying European countries - a blue badge from one country is valid in another. A person coming to Italy from another EU country may find it easier to apply in their home country for this universal badge which allows the use of reserved parking.


Things to Keep in Mind:

  • Disabled spaces in car parks reserved for disabled people are marked with a yellow line and a wheelchair symbol; parking is generally free in these spots, check with the parking attendant
  • Do not park in a space marked with a person's name or vehicle registration number
  • In an emergency and if not causing an obstruction, disabled parking is allowed on roads where parking is normally prohibited
  • Do not park in pedestrian zones or ZTL (restricted traffic area) unless local law specifies it is allowed
  • Disabled drivers may park without time restrictions on roads with parking time limits

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Liechtenstein

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol.

Apart from reserved spaces, there are no concessions for street parking or parking in car parks.

You may park only where parking is permitted, and you must pay parking charges and observe time limits.


Reciprocal Recognition

Parking badge: EU model. ECMT Resolution 97/4 has not been implemented and there are currently no plans to do so.

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Luxembourg

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol.


Parking on Roads

  • Do not park on roads where waiting is prohibited.
  • You must pay to park where payment is required and you must keep within the time limit.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones.

Parking in Car Parks

Public car parks offer no concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card.

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Malta

Reserved spaces for parking badge holders (known locally as the 'blue sticker') are allocated in all localities on-street. Reserved parking spaces for parking badge holders are also allocated in government owned off-street parking areas. Planning regulations for major private developments with off-street public car parks require the allocation of a proportion of the total public car parking spaces to be reserved for parking badge holders. Reserved parking spaces for disabled persons are marked with the wheelchair symbol and may be used by any person holding a valid 'blue sticker' parking badge.


Parking in roads in controlled parking areas

Vehicles displaying a 'blue sticker' parking badge may park on-street in the reserved spaces without time restriction in time controlled parking zones and without a charge in zones that are controlled using time-based parking fees.


Parking in public and private car parks

Vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card may be parked free of charge in certain localities or against the standard parking fee/time restrictions in other localities.


Reciprocal Recognition

Parking badge: EU model

Malta has adopted Council Recommendation 98/376/EC and there is mutual recognition of parking badges from EU countries. Regarding parking badges from non-EU countries, the following provision of ECMT Resolution 97/4 would apply as there is nothing in law to state the contrary:

"To give the same parking facilities to holders of this document coming from another member or associated member country as they do to their own nationals".

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Netherlands

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol. Do not park there if the space is marked with a name or vehicle registration number.


Parking on Roads

  • You may park for up to 3 hours on roads where parking is prohibited.
  • You must pay to park where payment is required and you must keep within the time limit. Local variations may apply, however. Check locally.
  • You may park without time limit o roads where parking is free but restricted by time.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones.

Parking in Car Parks

Public car parks offer no concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card.

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Norway

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol. Do not park there if the space is marked with a name or vehicle registration number. You may not use parking places reserved for other vehicles or vulnerable users.


Parking on Roads

  • Do not park on roads where waiting is prohibited.
  • You may park without time limit on roads where parking is free but restricted by time, unless a time limit is specified for vehicles displaying the disabled person's parking card.
  • You may park free of charge and without time limit on roads with parking meters or pay-and-display parking.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones.
  • You may park in residential areas where parking places restricted in time has been introduced.

  • Parking in Car Parks

    In many car parks vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card are allowed to be parked free of charge and without time limit, but only in bays reserved for disabled people. Check with car park notices or ask an attendant.


    Reciprocal Recognition

    Parking badge: EU model. ECMT Resolution 97/4 was implemented in 2000.


    Contact

    Harald GJELSVIK
    Senior Legal Adviser
    Public Roads Administration, Directorate of Public Roads Postbox 8142 Dep
    N-0033 Oslo
    E-mail: harald.gjelsvik@vegvesen.no

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Poland

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol or signs D-18, D-18b plus plate T-29. A driver of a vehicle with parking card does not pay for ferry passage.


Parking on Roads

A person driving a vehicle with a disabled person's parking car is allowed (provided that he/she drives with caution) to drive or park in the area which has following regulatory signs:

  • No vehicles
  • No motor vehicles
  • No bus
  • No motorcycles
  • No mopeds
  • No stopping
  • No parking during even days
  • No parking during odd days
  • Parking is restricted by time

Parking in Car Parks

Public car parks offer no concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card. Local authorities may establish: free parking only in marked places, free parking in whole area, reduced charges for the first hour, reduced subscription for parking.


Parking Badge: EU model


Contact

Ms. Malgorzata CHOINSKA
Ministry of Infrastructure
ul. Chalubinskiego 4/6 PL-00-928 Warsaw
E-mail: mchoinska@mi.gov.pl

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Portugal

On public roads and in car parks there are places designated for disabled people. Such places are marked with the wheelchair international symbol and they are provided for holders of a European Parking Badge. Under national legislation, this badge is issued without considering either who drives or who owns the vehicle, and it may be required by any disabled person, in order to make it possible for them to be transported in another person's car.

The badge guarantees the right to park one's own car of another person's car, both on designated places and places not designated for disabled people, when it is absolutely necessary and for a short time period, since this will not be to the detriment of the normal circulation of vehicles and pedestrians.

The current Highway Code has created another possibility of parking on-street and in car parks. Under this new disposition, disabled people have a right to park either their own vehicle, or the vehicle in which they are travelling, in new designated places provided in car parks and parking areas marked with the wheelchair symbol, as well as two other pictograms: a pregnant woman and a person carrying a child in their arms.


Parking on Roads

  • Do not park on roads where parking is prohibited.
  • You must pay to park on roads where payment is required and must not exceed the time paid for.
  • You must not exceed time limits on roads where time restrictions apply.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones.
  • There are also parking regulations made by some local Councils, providing disabled residents with restricted parking places close to their residence and work place. These persons must comply with the following conditions: to have a mobility impairment; to be a vehicle owner; to possess the EU model parking badge.
  • Do not park where the space is marked with a name or vehicle registration number.

Parking in Car Parks

Car parks do not always offer concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card.


Reciprocal Recognition

Parking badge: EU model. Portugal has implemented ECMT Resolution 97/4 under the 8th article of the Decree-Law n°307/2003.


Contact

Carlos PEREIRA
Instituto Nacional para a Reabilitaçao
Av. Conde de Valbom, 63
P-1069-178 Lisboa
E-mail: carlos.pereira@seg-social.pt

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Spain

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol.


Parking on Roads

  • Do not park on roads where parking is prohibited unless local concessions specifically allow it. Check locally.
  • Fees and time limit concessions for vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card vary. Check locally.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones unless local concessions specifically allow it. Check locally.

Parking in Car Parks

In most places car parks offer concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card. Check locally.


Reciprocal Recognition

Parking badge: EU model. ECMT Resolution 97/4 has been implemented.


Contact

Mr. José Antonio REDONDO
Centro Estatal de Autonomia Personal y Ayudas Tecnicas
c/de los Extremenos No 1
E-28018 Madrid
E-mail: ceapat@seg-social.es or jredondo@mtas.es

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Sweden

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol.


Parking on Roads

  • You may park for up to 3 hours on roads where parking is prohibited.
  • On roads where parking is free but restricted by time the following time limits apply to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card:
    • where parking is limited to less than 3 hours, you may park for up to 3 hours;
    • where parking is limited to more than 3 hours, you may park for up to 24 hours.
  • You may be allowed to park free of charge on roads where payment is normally required for parking. Check locally.
  • You may drive and park for up to 3 hours in pedestrian zones.

Parking in Car Parks

Car parks often make concessions to vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card. Check locally.


Parking badge: EU model


Contact

Contact

Mr. Lars AHLMAN
Advisor at the Swedish Association of Local Authorities
Tel. +46 40 34 35 75
E-mail: lars.ahlman@svekom.se

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Switzerland

On public roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are indicated by the wheelchair symbol. For parking in other places (including long term), the parking badge must be displayed with a parking permit.


Parking on Roads

  • You can park for up to 2 hours in streets in which parking is strictly prohibited (indicated by signs);
  • You can park for up to 6 hours in authorised parking places in streets in which parking is free but time limited;
  • You can park for over 6 hours in streets in which parking is controlled par meters or pay and display. The decision on whether such parking is free is taken locally. You need to check;
  • You can park for up to two hours in meeting/pick up areas and in pedestrian areas to which access is permitted.

Parking in Car Parks

National parking concessions do not apply in private car parks. You need to check locally on reserved places and charges.


Reciprocal Recognition

The badge is similar to that prescribed by the European Union. Switzerland has implemented ECMT Resolution 97/4.


Contact

Stephan HALTINER
Case Postale 3003
Berne
E-mail: stephan.haltiner@astra.admin.ch

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United Kingdom

On roads and in car parks, parking places reserved for disabled people are marked with wheelchair symbol.

While the Blue Badge disabled person's parking Scheme operates throughout the United Kingdom, there are small variations in its application in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

In England and Wales the Blue Badge disabled person's parking card is used in conjunction with a parking disc. In Scotland and Northern Ireland, there is no time restriction on parking for Blue Badge holders. However, people from other countries who display the disabled person's parking card in England and Wales without a parking disc will be given the same conditions.


Parking on Roads

  • You may park for up to 3 hours on roads where parking is prohibited unless the signs say "No loading or unloading", unless in Scotland or Northern Ireland.
  • You may park free of charge and without time limit on roads with parking meters or pay-and-display parking.
  • You may park without time limit on roads where parking is free but restricted by time.
  • Do not drive or park in pedestrian zones unless there is a sign showing that vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking car are exempt.
  • The Scheme does not operate fully in Central London. Check locally in Central London about concessions.

Parking in Car Parks

Some car parks allow vehicles displaying a disabled person's parking card to be parked free of charge. Check with car park notices or ask an attendant.


Reciprocal Recognition

Parking badge: EU model. The UK has not yet implemented ECMT Resolution 97/4 but it has taken the necessary legal powers and is committed to doing so. There is no timetable yet for implementation.


Getting a Blue Badge

Local councils are responsible for issuing Blue Badge parking permits. Contact your council to apply for a Blue Badge.

They will send you an application form which you will need to fill in and return with two recent passport-sized photographs of yourself. Some councils charge an application fee of up to £2.

You may be able to begin your Blue Badge application online through your local council's website.

Enter details of where you live to find your local council website where you can apply for a Blue Badge or find out more.

Please note that this service is only available for councils in England.


How long a Blue Badge is valid for

Most badges are issued for three years.

The badge should be reviewed every three years. Some impairments and conditions can improve and the badge holder may not need a badge any longer. Even if the mobility inpairment is permanent, the review ensures that the council has the correct details of the badge holder, for example the address.

Contact your council about six weeks before your badge expires to ask for a new application form.

In some circumstances, the Blue Badge is valid for less than three years.

For children under two, the badge is issued for a maximum of two years, ending on the day after their second birthday.

If you have a Blue Badge because you get the higher rate of the mobility component of Disability Living Allowance or War Pensioner's Mobility Supplement, and the duration of your benefit award is less than three years, the badge is valid for as long as that period.

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United States

In the United States, every individual State has its own rules and regulations on disability parking permits, among other things. Each State has a Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) which is usually the point of contact for that State and any vehicle related questions, including disability parking permits.

Requirements for disabled parking permits for visiting overseas motorists vary from state to state. Many of the websites of individual state Departments of Motor Vehicles provide information and/or application forms for a disabled parking permit.

If you have a disabling condition which may allow you to have a handicapped parking permit, talk to your doctor. Don't wait for your doctor to bring it up to you. Doctors are very busy and it is unlikely that this is foremost on their minds. Your doctor will not hestitate to sign the paperwork for you to get a handicapped parking placard though, if you are eligible.

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

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

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Sources:

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