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Information for Disabled Drivers in Maryland

In Maryland, drivers certified by licensed health personnel to have impaired mobility or a condition which substantially interferes with mobility may qualify for "Disabled" status.

You are also considered a disabled driver if you:

  • Have lung disease to such an extent that forced (respiratory) expiratory volume for 1 second, when measured by spirometry, is less than 1 liter, or arterial oxygen tension is less than 60 mm of mercury on room air at rest.
  • Have cardiovascular disease limitations classified in severity as Class III or Class IV according to the standards set by the American Heart Association.
  • Are unable to walk 200 feet without stopping to rest.
  • Are unable to walk without the use of, or assistance from, a brace, cane, crutch, another person, prosthetic device, or other assistance device.
  • Require a wheelchair for mobility.
  • Have lost the use of an arm, hand, foot, or leg.
  • Have a permanent disability that adversely impacts your ambulatory ability to such an extent that you may be subject to risk of injury without special parking privileges.
  • Have a permanent impairment of both eyes.
  • Have a temporary disability that substantially impairs your ability to walk for at least three weeks.

Disabled persons can acquire a disability placard or license plates. These entitle you to special parking privileges in areas designated for disabled persons, whenever you are the driver or a passenger of the vehicle. Misuse or abuse of these privileges is a misdemeanor; offenders can get fines of up to $500 and revocation of your special parking privileges.

Other facilities available for disabled drivers include:

  • Ability to take a leashed service animal along to the MVA.
  • Alternative methods to complete the written Drivers License Examination.
  • TTD for Hearing Impaired.
  • Specially designated counters for Disabled Persons at the MVA office.
  • Exemption from paying parking meter fees in Maryland if the parking meters are not easily accessible to disabled persons.
  • Option to park for up to twice the maximum allowable time shown on the meter, provided that such time does not exceed 4 hours.

Visit the section on Maryland MVA's Motorists with Disabilities for details.

HOW TO APPLY FOR DISABLED STATUS

You are considered to have disabled status when you acquire a disability placard or license plates. The procedure to acquire these is explained below.

Duration of status

Disability license plates are available only to those who are permanently disabled and have a vehicle registered in their name. Registration stickers on the plate must be renewed every 2 years.

Disability placards may be issued to those with permanent or temporary disabilities:

  • Placards for the permanently disabled are valid for 4 years.
  • Temporary placards are valid from a minimum of 3 weeks up to a maximum of 6 months as noted by the certifying physician.

How to apply for disability license plates or a disability placard

To obtain disability license plates:
  1. Download and complete the Application for Maryland Parking Placards/License Plates for Individuals with a Disability.
  2. Have a licensed physician, chiropractor, optometrist, podiatrist, or nurse practitioner sign the Disability Certification Information portion of the form.
  3. Enter your registration, insurance, and vehicle identification details in part D of the form.
  4. Submit the form along with applicable fees at the nearest Motor Vehicle Administration office or mail it to the address on the form.
To obtain a disability placard:
  1. Download and complete the Application for Maryland Parking Placards/License Plates for Individuals with a Disability.
  2. Have a licensed physician, chiropractor, optometrist, podiatrist, or nurse practitioner sign the Disability Certification Information portion of the form.
  3. Submit the form along with applicable fees at the nearest Motor Vehicle Administration office or mail it to the address on the form.

EXEMPTIONS

You do not need a doctor's certificate, if:
  • You have lost an arm, hand, foot, or leg, and you apply in person at the nearest MVA office.
  • The Veterans Administration has certified by letter that you have a 100 per cent service connected disability.

FEE

A permanent or temporary disability placard is issued free of cost. There is no fee for permanent disability plates, provided that the plates are applied for at the time of the scheduled registration renewal. You will have to pay a fee of $20 if disability plates are requested after renewal.

RENEWAL

Once the 4 year validity of permanent disability placards is over:
  1. You will be sent a renewal notice in the mail prior to the expiration of your placard by the MVA.
  2. You will have to verify the information on the renewal notice, and update your address if required, and mail the notice to the address given in the form.
  3. Holders of permanent placards do not require recertification by a doctor.

REPLACEMENT

To replace lost, stolen or mutilated placards or plates:
  1. Download and complete the Application for Maryland Parking Placards/License Plates for Individuals with a Disability.
  2. Enclose any mutilated placard or remaining plates. In case of stolen placards or plates, enclose a copy of the police report along with your application.
  3. Submit the form along with applicable fees at the nearest Motor Vehicle Administration office or mail it to the address on the form.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Reviews of Information for Disabled Drivers in Maryland

Is the widow of a spouse who had a handicapped tag allowed to keep and use the tag after the spouse eligible spouse dies? What is the penalty for retaining the tag?

If we already have a disabled placard for an automobile, canwe request an additional one for a second automobile?

i mailed in my request for new placard in march.

i have not received it .

please advise

maurice jackson

 

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