What Happens If My Car Gets Towed With My Handicap Placard Inside?

For millions of disabled people across the country, a vehicle is a crucial lifeline. The ability to drive whenever they want or need to makes life much easier. Visiting friends and family, running errands, driving to work – the ability to do these things for yourself is important for independence and wellbeing.

Disabled drivers also depend on their disabled parking permit to make their destinations accessible. A disabled parking permit is an essential element of a disabled person’s ability to get around and live the life they want to live.

Disabled Parking - towed vehicle
Image by Tama 66 on Pixabay: What should you do if your car gets towed with your parking permit inside?

The Rules And Regulations Around Driving With A Disabled Parking Permit

There are many important rules and regulations around driving and disabled parking permit usage. Without these, roads would be mayhem and disabled parking programs inoperable. It is an unfortunate fact of life that almost all of us end up breaking rules from time to time. Some people do so deliberately, but most of us break rules due to being in a rush, not knowing the intricacies of the system, or having a simple moment of forgetfulness.

Sometimes, if you have broken a rule related to driving or parking, your vehicle will be towed. This is very inconvenient, especially so for disabled drivers. Sometimes a driver’s car is towed with their disabled parking permit inside, which adds even further to the inconvenience – mainly because a disabled parking permit is designed to be used in any vehicle the permit holder is traveling in, not just their own car which was towed.

So, what happens if your car gets towed with your disabled parking permit inside?

Can Your Car Get Towed With Your Disabled Parking Permit Inside?

Unfortunately, it is quite possible for your car to get towed with your disabled parking permit inside. Placards are hung inside the vehicle from the rearview mirror, and a disabled parking license plate is bolted to the vehicle. So if a disabled driver’s vehicle gets towed, there is a strong chance that their disabled parking permit will be taken along with the car.

Why Would Your Car Get Towed With Your Disabled Parking Permit Inside?

There are several reasons why a car could be towed with a disabled parking permit inside. The car could have been involved in a traffic accident or broken down. A common reason is that the vehicle was parked incorrectly.

A disabled parking permit allows its owner to park in any designated disabled parking space, or in some jurisdictions, in metered, on-street spaces free of charge. But there are still many ways a disabled driver can park their vehicle illegally.

In plenty of jurisdictions around the country, disabled drivers are not entitled to park in metered, on-street spaces free of charge. They are also not entitled to park in spaces that are:

  • Reserved for emergency service vehicles
  • Loading zones
  • Blocking a fire hydrant
  • Marked as a “Tow Zone”
  • Obstructing traffic
  • Preventing access to a separate handicap space

If you park illegally in one of these ways, your car may be towed.

Disabled Parking - vehicle tow
Image by Matt Chesin on Unsplash: A car may be towed due to an accident or a parking infraction. But what should I do if my car gets towed with my handicap placard inside?

What Should You Do If Your Car Gets Towed With Your Disabled Permit Inside?

If your car is towed with your permit inside, take the following steps.

  • Understand why your car was towed. What parking rules have you violated?
  • If you object to the reason for being towed, take pictures of the scene and any relevant signage in the area.
  • If you have been left a ticket, call the number on the ticket, or on any nearby “No Parking” signs. Otherwise, call the local police department – not 911, as this is not classified as an emergency.
  • Make arrangements to collect your vehicle.
  • If necessary, request a temporary disabled parking permit or note you can use in the absence of your permit from the local police department.

What Paperwork Will You Need To Get Your Car And Disabled Permit Back?

To retrieve your car and permit, you will usually need to present the following:

  • Driver’s license
  • Proof of insurance
  • Proof of vehicle registration
  • Cash payment
  • Letter of recommendation for a disabled parking permit if you need a temporary replacement permit for the time before you will be collecting your car.

What Are the Costs If Your Car Gets Towed With Your Disabled Permit Inside?

The costs involved in having your vehicle towed are different in different jurisdictions. The most common related costs are:

  • Towing charge
  • Storage fee
  • Administration fee
  • Charge per mile towed
  • Vehicle-release fee
  • Flatbed fee

These fees will often add up to more than $100.

What If Your Disabled Parking Placard Is Destroyed?

If your disabled parking permit is destroyed for some reason, you will need to apply for a replacement permit.

How To Get A Replacement Handicap Placard

Applying for a replacement disabled parking permit is an easy process. In some states, you will need to file a police report explaining why you need a replacement permit.

Once you have filed a police report (if necessary), you can send your application for a replacement permit to your local DMV. Usually you will not need to have a new consultation with a medical professional, as your original consultation and permit will still be valid.

How Do You Apply For Your First Disabled Parking Permit?

If you have not yet applied for a disabled parking permit, the best way is online through Disabled Parking. The team will set up a virtual consultation with a local medical professional, who will examine you and write a letter of recommendation. The process is quick and easy.

Featured image by PIRO4D on Pixabay