How To Obtain a Disabled Parking Permit in California

Wondering how to obtain a disabled parking permit in California? Obtaining a disabled parking permit can be a challenging endeavor if you do not know the ins and outs of the process. Each state has a somewhat different process in the United States for its residents to obtain a permit.

If you are trying to obtain a disabled parking permit in the state of California there are many qualifications and rules that you need to be aware of. The following guide will be a useful tool to assist you in this process of getting a permit.

Make Sure You Qualify

To obtain a disabled person placard in the state of California there are qualifications. These include:

  • Impaired mobility
  • Lost use of one or more lower extremities or both hands
  • Having a disease that substantially impairs or interferes with mobility
  • Being severely disabled and unable to move without an assistive device
  • Documented visual problems
  • Lower-vision or partial sightedness

If you have an impairment based on any of the conditions above you may qualify for a permit. Conditions must be accompanied by a medical certificate.

Obtain a Medical Certificate

As part of the application, you will need to have a physician certify that you are medically disabled and legally qualify for the permit. So, you will need to visit a doctor in your area who is willing to examine you and certify on the paperwork that you have a disability.

California requires that you go to a licensed physician, surgeon, physician assistant, nurse practitioner, or certified nurse mid-wife for certification. This individual must have knowledge of the condition that you are impaired by and sign the doctor’s certification section of the application.

You may also go to a licensed chiropractor if you have lost the use of one or both legs or if you have a severe limitation in the use of your legs.

You may also receive certification from an ophthalmologist or optometrist if you have impairment caused by an eye disease or low vision.

If you have an injury or impairment that is apparent you may not receive medical certification. For example, if you have lost a leg or both hands, you can go to the DMV in person and submit an application without medical certification.

The Application Process

 To obtain an application you can go to the California department of motor vehicles website and fill it out or print it out and mail it in. You can also go to the DMV in person and receive a copy.

Before mailing in the application or submitting it online, make sure that you have medical certification. There is a section on the application for a physician to certify your qualifications for the permit. Applications without medical certification must be submitted in person.

How to Use Your Permit

Once you know how to obtain a disabled parking permit in California, you need to understand the rules and regulations pertaining to its use. California code 4461 pertains to the laws covering the use and misuse of disabled parking placards.

The first thing that you want to understand about your permit is what type of permit it is. It is illegal to display an expired permit, and the different permits have different periods of validity.

If you have a temporary parking permit it will only last up to 6 months. Travel permits last even shorter. A travel permit for a resident lasts 30 days and for a non-resident lasts 90 days.

Even if you have a permanently disabled parking permit, you must renew it after 2 years. Contrary to its title a permanently disabled parking permit can expire.

It is important also to understand where you can and cannot park with a disabled parking permit. Obviously, you can use your permit to park in any of the spots marked with the universal symbol for disabled parking. This symbol is a picture of a wheelchair, usually in blue and white.

There are, however, several places that you cannot park with this placard. There are several spaces in California that are marked for delivery or passenger vehicles, also there are spaces that no one can park in.

You must display your permit at all times when parked in a disabled parking spot. Your disabled parking permit must be removed when your vehicle is in motion because it is an obstruction to your view of the road.

How to Renew a Permit

A permanent placard is valid for two years. This means that you will need to renew your application every two years to receive a new permit. Renewals are not automatic in California, so you will need to resubmit an application.

How to Get a New Permit after Losing One

If you lose your placard at any time during its two-year period, you do not need to submit another application. Instead, you need to complete and sign the application for a replacement disability access license plate and/or placard.

Where are the California County Licensing Offices Located?

Individuals in California who are seeking a disabled parking permit or plates are in luck, as there are numerous County Licensing Offices available throughout the state. You will need to do some research before submitting it to any office, as you are supposed to send your application to the office that is closest to you.

Can You Report Handicapped Parking Space Abuse?

Once you have your permit, it can be frustrating to see individuals parking in the spaces you need without having a placard or permit visible. If you suspect that someone has been abusing the system, you can contact the California Department of Public Safety. Be sure to write down the vehicle’s license plate number and a description of what you observed when making the report.

Conclusion

By following this “how to obtain a disabled parking permit in California” guide, you can receive your disabled parking permit in the state of California and use it correctly. Remember to keep it visible at all times when parking and to remain up to date with your renewals and physician visits.

How to Use Your California Disabled Parking Permit

If you received a disabled parking permit from the state of California or are in the process of receiving one, there are several rules and regulations that you should be aware of. Following these rules and regulations will help you use your permit effectively and avoid potential problems.

Where you can park

In order to park in handicapped parking spaces in California, you must have your state-issued placard on display or have a state-issued disabled license plate. Spaces will generally have the universal wheelchair symbol marking the spot in one of several ways.

Disabled parking spots may have a sign with the wheelchair symbol. Disabled spaces may also have the wheelchair symbol painted on the ground within the parking space.

Blue curbs are also an indicator of disabled parking spaces along the side of the streets. If none of these spaces are available, the state of California allows those with disabled parking permits to park in metered spaces free of charge.

You can also park in designated spaces along the road if a handicap space is not available. You can also park along green curbs and limited-time parking spaces beyond the time limitations.

Where you cannot park

There are, however, limitations to where you can park within the state of California. Places that you cannot park include:

  • Along a yellow curb
  • Along a red curb
  • Along a white curb
  • In the crosshatch section next to disabled spaces

You cannot park along a yellow curb, these spaces are reserved for commercial vehicles only. You cannot park along a white curb, which are designated areas for the loading and unloading of mail and passengers.

You also cannot park along a red curb, since it is illegal to park or stop next to those. Also, the crosshatched section next to disabled parking spaces are areas where you cannot park your vehicle with a disabled parking permit from the state of California.

Misuse of Disabled Parking Permit

If you have been issued a disabled parking permit by the state of California, there are several ways to misuse it. Several of these things are not only illegal but can result in the suspension or termination of the permit.

You cannot lend your disabled parking permit issued to you by the state of California to another motorist. Knowingly allowing another motorist to use your disabled parking permit is illegal in the state of California.

You also cannot use your disabled parking permit on a vehicle on which the plates have been canceled or revoked. And you must display your disabled parking permit at tall times when parked in a disabled parking space.

Make sure, however, to remove the placard when your vehicle is in motion because it can obstruct your view of the road. Law enforcement can consider a placard that has not been removed as an obstruction of your view that contributes to responsibility for violations.

Displaying an invalid placard

The display of a placard that is invalid or expired is considered by the state of California to be the misuse of a disabled parking permit. If you have someone else’s placard displayed or your placard is expired then you are in violation of the law.

Exceptions

It is not considered the misuse of a disabled parking permit in the state of California if you are transporting a disabled person. If you are not the person who the disabled parking permit was issued to but are with the rightful owner of the placard then you are not in violation of the law.

This means that if you are a disabled person who is in possession of a disabled parking permit but for some reason are unable to drive, you can have someone else transport you and use your placard. The driver in this instance is not in violation of California state law.

Penalties for misuse

California vehicle code 4461 pertains to the misuse of a disabled parking placard. Violation of this code can be viewed as either a civil or criminal misdemeanor defense.

A civil infraction also referred to as a non-criminal offense, will usually result in a fine anywhere between $250 and $1000. A misdemeanor level infraction of this code, however, can result in up to 6 months in jail and may also result in a fine similar to the one listed above.

In order to guilty of violating this code, you must have knowingly acted out an infraction. If you were unaware that your placard had been canceled or you are transporting a disabled person at the time of the infraction, then you are said to be California law to have a legitimate defense.

Your main defenses for violating these laws are basically lack of knowledge and no actual misuse. This pertains to an honest mistake on your part or a mistake made by law enforcement in issuing the infraction.

Types of placards

You also want to be aware of the type of the disabled parking permit that you were issued by the State of California and that you are using it accordingly. A permanent placard can be used universally throughout the state according to the laws but it does need to be renewed every two years.

Temporary placards expire after 6 months and cannot be displayed after expiration. The same holds for travel placards for residents which are good for 30 days and non-resident travel placards which are good for 90 days.

Conclusion

If you are issued a disabled parking permit by the state of California, it is important that you use it properly and legally. There are many parking spots that this permit gives you access to but you must also understand its limitations.

There are several areas that you cannot park in with a disabled parking permit in the state of California. Most of these spaces are reserved for specific vehicles that are serving purposes such as delivery and transport.

Violations of California code 4461 can result in a fine or a misdemeanor, showing the importance of using your permit in a proper manner.

California Regulations for Obtaining a Handicap Permit

You’re permanently or temporarily disabled and live in the state of California, you may qualify to get a DP or disabled person license plate or temporary DP placard. These items allow you to park in spaces that are designed for handicapped individuals. If you want to get a license plate or handicap placard in California, you’ll have to follow specific steps to complete the process.

Am I Eligible?

You may qualify to get a disabled license plate in California if you have impaired mobility because you’ve lost one or more arms or legs or don’t have complete use of one or more legs or arms. If you’ve been medially diagnosed with a disease or condition that interferes with your mobility or if you can’t get around without the use of a device, you’re likely eligible for a disability permit. You may also qualify to get a permit if you have vision issues that have been documented by your doctor, including partial-sightedness or lower vision problems.

It’s important to know whether your disability is permanent or temporary. If you have a health issue that causes you to have limited mobility for a few months, such as a broken arm or leg, you’ll need to obtain a teIt’s important to know whether your disability is permanent or temporary when you’re filling out a handicap placard application in California. If you have a health issue that causes you to have limited mobility for a few months, such as a broken arm or leg, you’ll need to obtain a temporary placard. In California, temporary placards are valid for up to six months, and you can renew the placards up to six times. Your condition is considered permanent if it will last longer than a year. If you have a permanent disability, it’s best to apply for a permanent license.

Make sure you’re adhering to all eligibility requirements for the state of California. Conditions that will Make sure you’re adhering to all eligibility requirements for a handicap placard in California. Conditions that will appear on the application form include circulatory disease, lung disease, heart issues, and vision problems. Eligibility requirements also include loss of or loss of use of lower limbs or hands or any disorder that limits the use of your extremities or having a disability that keeps you from moving without an assistive device.

If your disability doesn’t fit one of these descriptions, but you think you have a condition that warrants a handIf your disability doesn’t fit one of these descriptions, but you think you have a condition that warrants a handicap parking permit, your physician can still certify if you’re eligible for a disabled license plate in California.

How to Get a California Permit

Becoming familiar with California handicap parking requirements before beginning the process will ensure you have with the right information you’ll need from medical professionals. The first step of how to apply for a handicap placard in California is to fill out and sign a REG 195, which is the applications for disabled plates and placards. You have to receive certification from a doctor as well. Take your document to your medical professional or physician and ask him/her complete the section that says Doctor’s Certification of Disability. The physician needs to explain your condition in detail and explain why these factors qualify you for a permit. Medical staff members who can fill out your REG 195 include surgeons, physician’s assistants, licensed physicians, certified nurse midwives and nurse practitioners.

If you’ve lost both hands or one or both legs, you’ll have to visit your nearest California DMV in person. This will exempt you from getting a doctor’s certification for your disability placard.

Fees Associated With Placards and Permits

Remember to include the correct fee with your application so you won’t delay receiving your California handicap placard or license plate. If you need a temporary placard, the fee is $6. If you’re applying for a permanent handicapped license plate fee, there is no fee. However, you do have to submit your original license plates to the DMV. Don’t return your original plates until you receive the new license plates. You’ll still have to pay your registration fees according to the usual schedule. You can submit the application in person or in the mail.

Send your complete application to:  DMV Placard, P.O. Box 932345, Sacramento, CA 94232-3450, or make an appointment at your local DMV to submit the application in person.

 

How Long Are Permits Valid?

A permanent placard is valid for two years. If you live in California, the placard will expire on June 30th of each odd-numbered year.

Temporary placards are valid for up to 180 days or the date that your doctor specified on the application, whichever time is shorter.

If you need a travel parking placard and live in California, this permit is valid from 30 days from the time the DMV issues the placard. The travel placard is valid for individuals who have a permanent DV license plate or DP parking placard. If you’re a non-resident, you can get a travel parking placard for 90 days or the date issued by a doctor, whichever is shorter.

Handicap Parking Laws in California

You should know what your license plate or placard allows you to do when you live in California. The plates and placards give you the benefit of parking is spaces that are designated for disabled individuals. Look for parking spaces with the wheelchair symbol or for signs that labeled handicapped parking spaces. Be sure to park at the blue curb that is set aside for individuals with disabilities. If you go to facility that has a green curb, you may park there for a limited time. You can use your placard or plate to park on the street if the street has a meter for an unlimited period of time. You’ll only be able to park in spaces that are marked “resident only” if you visit a townhouse or apartment complex.

You should also know what your California handicap placard or plate doesn’t allow you to do. Remember that you can’t park in areas with a crosshatch pattern near a handicapped parking space. The patterned spaces are designated for wheelchair lifts. Don’t park at yellow or red curbs, since these areas are for loading and emergency zones or at white curbs which are used to load and unload passengers.

Renewing Your California Placard or Permit

If you have a permanent disability, you don’t have to file a renewal application if you live in California. The DMIf you have a permanent disability, you don’t have to file a renewal application if you live in California. The DMV will mail you a new placard on the address included in your DMV records. In some instances, you might need a handicap placard renewal form. If your address changes, fill out a DMV 14 application to ensure your placard is going to the right place.

If your permit or placard is lost or stolen, you can mail If your permit or handicap placard in California is lost or stolen, you can mail a REG 156 application to:

DMV Placard

PO Box 942869

Sacramento, CA 94269-0001

Getting Your Handicap Parking Permit in California

Obtaining a disabled parking permit is a process if you’re a U.S. citizen. Each state has separate rules when it comes to getting a permit, and the city you live in can also determine the tasks you’ll need to complete for a valid parking permit. If you need a California handicap permit and live in the state, here are the steps you should take.

 Determine If You Qualify For a Permit

In the state of California, a medical provider has to verify that you qualify for a handicap permit. Eligibility guidelines include:

-You have limited mobility due to a disorder or disease

-You have health issues due to lung disease, and have an FEV or forced expiratory volume for 1 second and less than 1 liter when measured by spirometry, or your arterial oxygen tension is under 60mm/hg while at rest

-You’re missing one or both hands or don’t have use of one or both hands

-You’re missing one or both legs or can’t use one or both legs

-You are blind or have low vision

On your application, your doctor has to describe your condition in detail to determine whether you need a handicap placard.

Disabled Parking Permit Application Process for California

You can receive Form REF 195, which is the Application for Disabled Personal Placard or Plates, by visiting your local California Department of Motor Vehicles Office. You can also print the document online.

You won’t have to pay a fee for license plates or permanent parking placards, but you do have to pay a fee of $6 for temporary placards.

Be sure that both you and your certified physician complete the form and sign the application. When you’re done, bring the document to the DMV nearest you or mail the form to:

DMV Placard

PO Box 932345

Sacramento, CA 94232-3450

It’s usually best to bring the form in to your local office but be sure to make an appointment first.

How Long Are My Permits Valid?

The length of time that your permit is valid will depend on whether the placard is permanent or temporary. You’ll also have to consider the renewal policies and time frames that you’ll need the permit.

For temporary placards in California, the time frame for use is 6 months, or a date that your physician specifies. Temporary permits can’t be renewed more than six times in a row.

You can use permanent placards and plate for two years; the permits will expire on June 30, so be sure to make your renewal appointment before this date. If you have a permanent permit, the California DMV will mail your new placard to you if your application is still valid. Ensure that the address on file with the DMV is correct so you can receive your placard in a timely manner.

Replacing a Lost or Stolen Permit

If your permit or placard is stolen or lost, you can complete an Application for Replacement Plates, Stickers and Documents, which is Form REG 156. Mail your completed application to the address listed above.

Applying for Disabled Veteran Plates in California

If you’re a resident of California and have served in the Armed Forces, you’re likely eligible for a Disabled Veteran license plate. Your disability must be completely related to your time in the Armed Forces and verified by the Department of Veterans Affairs or the branch of the military that honorably discharged you.

If you want a California handicap permit or license plate that is specifically for disabled veterans, fill out the Disabled Veteran Certification on the Miscellaneous Certifications document, which is Form REG 256A. On the form, you must specific why you qualify. If you:

-Aren’t able to move without help from an assistive item (i.e. cane, wheelchair)

-You’ve lost or can no longer use one or more limbs

-You’ve been medically classified as permanently blind

If you’re a disabled veteran, you don’t have to pay a registration or license fee to receive your license plate. Once you receive and fill out all the necessary military forms and the permit application, you can take the documents to your nearest DMV Field office or mail the forms to:

Special Processing Unit, MS D238

PO Box 932345

Sacramento, CA 94232-0001

You can start using your license plate right away, and you’ll need to renew your plates on or before the specified date. You’ll also be able to get Social Security benefits after you file a disability claim.

Reporting California Handicap Permit Abuse

Unfortunately, there are times when people will abuse handicap parking permits and placards. Handicap parking abuse is defined at the use of placards or permits by people who don’t have a disability.

If you see that someone is easily getting out their car and is in the vehicle alone when occupying a handicap space, there’s a good chance this person should be parking in this area. Let the property owners or security guards know if you suspect that someone is abusing handicapped parking.

Keep in mind that it’s against the law in California to make any changes to a placard, permit or placard ID card or provide false information to the DMV to obtain a handicap placard. You’re also not permitted to let someone else use your permit if you’re not in the car. Forging a physician’s signature to get a handicap permit is illegal as well, and you should display or process placards that are not authentic. You’re also not permitted to have more than one permanent handicap placard in your possession at one time.

Committing any of these actions could result in civil penalties, fines and in some cases, imprisonment.

Be sure to keep your handicap permit or placard visible at all times. If you have a placard ID card, carry this on your person so you can show it to the proper authorities if anyone questions you about parking in a handicap space. Keeping all your documents current can also ensure that you can park safely and conveniently.

California Regulations for Obtaining a Handicap Permit

You’re permanently or temporarily disabled and live in the state of California, you may qualify to get a DP or disabled person license plate or temporary DP placard. These items allow you to park in spaces that are designed for handicapped individuals. If you want to get a permit or license plate in California, you’ll have to follow specific steps to complete the process.

Am I Eligible?

You may qualify to get a placard or license plate in California if you have impaired mobility because you’ve lost one or more arms or legs or don’t have complete use of one or more legs or arms. If you’ve been medially diagnosed with a disease or condition that interferes with your mobility or if you can’t get around without the use of a device, you’re likely eligible for a disability permit. You may also qualify to get a permit if you have vision issues that have been documented by your doctor, including partial-sightedness or lower vision problems.