Getting a Handicap Placard or Plate in Illinois
Accessibility for disabled people is exponentially improved by the issuing of special blue placards and plates. These allow drivers who have difficulty moving long distances closer, easier access to a building’s entrance.
Who Qualifies for a Handicap Placard?
The key factor in parking in a disabled spot is a person’s mobility. In order to qualify for a handicap placard or plate, an Illinois doctor must certify that one or more of the following conditions applies to you:
- Blindness and/or deafness (or vision/hearing impairment)
- Trouble walking more than 200 feet without stopping for rest
- Difficulty breathing without a portable oxygen tank
- Lung disease or respiratory problem
- Pregnancy problems which hinder mobility
- Cardiovascular disease
- Any nervous system disorder which inhibits walking
- Required use of wheelchair or crutches
Are There Different Types of Placards and Plates?
Temporary placards can be issued for conditions lasting a few months. Those with permanent disabilities can apply for either placards or plates which need to be renewed every four years. There is a limit of only one placard per person, and failing to display it in plain view when parked in a handicap spot could result in a fine. Some placards also allow drivers to park in metered spaces without paying, if their disability prevents them from being able to access it easily. There is also a special placard for organizations tasked with transporting disabled people so that they can park in handicapped spots when carrying their passengers.
To get disabled parking plates, you must be listed as the owner of the vehicle on its title, be the parent/guardian of a disabled person, or be the one in charge of transporting a disabled person.
How to Apply for a Handicap Placard or Plate
If you qualify and have a doctor certify your condition, simply complete a Persons with Disabilities Certification for Parking Placard/License Plates form with the help of your doctor and bring it to your local Secretary of State office. Don’t forget to bring your drivers license and a check or money order to cover any fees which may be assessed for the creation of a license plate. Once you get your Illinois handicap placard or plate, you will be free to park in disabled spots all around the country. Plates and placards issued in other states are nationally recognized too, so you don’t have to worry about using your out-of-state plate to park in Illinois.