A handicap placard allows you to park in reserved spaces.
Applying for a Handicap Placard or License Plate in Florida
If you are someone with a physical disability in the state of Florida, you can get a special license plate and placard which enables you to park in reserved parking spaces in most major parking lots around Florida. It’s a convenient program that grants precedence to you for the most desirable spaces and limits the distance you will have to move to get from your car to the building.
But to get one of these special placards, you’ll have to first apply through your local county tax collector’s office, and have the testimony of a medical professional that you actually have one of the qualifying disabilities.
Applying for a Disabled Parking Permit
Applying for a disabled parking permit is an easy process, so long as long as you actually have a qualifying disability. To get a disabled parking permit, your physical disability must meet any of the following criteria:
- Inability to walk, even with the use of assistive device
- Permanent need for use of a wheelchair
- Restrictive breathing due to lung disease
- Use of portable oxygen tank
- Class III or Class IV heart condition
- Severely limited walking due to a neurological, arthritic, or orthopedic condition
- Legally blind as certified by an optometrist
To apply for a disabled parking permit, you have to complete the Application for Disabled Person Parking Permit and have a medical professional sign the certification statement. This form must be submitted to the local tax collector’s office or license plate agency either in person or by mail. You also need to show proof of your valid Florida driver’s license or identification card, and pay $15 for your temporary permit, which is only valid for six months.
When you use this temporary permit, it must be hung on the rearview mirror of the vehicle and the permit number must be visible to anyone standing outside the vehicle.
Applying for a Disabled License Plate
Once you have received your disabled parking permit, you can apply for a disabled license plate too. You will need to surrender your old plate before getting a new one. Your new plate will bear the same expiration date as your old one, and you will still have to renew the registration of your new plate annually or biennially.
Replacement of Disability Permits and Plates
Replacement for lost, damaged, or stolen disabled parking permits can be done at a local county tax collector’s office. Together with your current registration, the completed form must be submitted to the local county tax collector’s office. If the plate is stolen, you have to report the theft to the police and include the police report in the replacement request form. Fret not though, because stolen plates are replaced for free!