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Applying for a blue badge

We strongly recommend that you consider applying for a blue badge

Regardless of whether or not your parent is a driver, if you drive, our carents strongly recommend the blue badge scheme. It can make getting about so much easier for both of you.   

For drivers and passengers

Your parent can use their blue badge as a driver or as a passenger to help get parked closer to wherever they are going.   Parking near the supermarket, bank or hospital is simpler and often cheaper if your parent has a blue badge.  Also, disabled parking bays are often wider than the majority of bays which makes it much easier for your parents to get in and out of the car.

Multiple benefits

The way a blue badge can be used differs in England, Scotland and Wales.  Generally, it enables you to:

  • park on single or double yellow lines for up to three hours (unless there is a ban on loading)
  • park for free where there are parking meters, pay and display machines, disabled parking spaces (with the blue wheelchair symbol)

There may be other benefits for blue badge holders although these depend on local arrangements.  Some car parks and town centres have special parking arrangements and benefits for disabled people.  This includes London which has some provision for disabled people on its red routes (visit the Transport for London website for more information )

Issued by Local Councils

Blue bridges are issued by Local Councils and the application costs and processes vary slightly across the UK.  A blue badge is free in Wales but costs £10 In England, and £20 in Scotland.  The badges usually last up to three years after which they will need to be formally renewed.  

Apply early

We recommend that you apply for the scheme as soon as possible because the process can take 12 weeks or even longer.   If you live in England or Wales you can apply online through your Local Council.   Your parent can apply directly or you can apply on their behalf.

Paperwork

There is quite a lot of paperwork involved with the application process and the application will not be assessed until the council is in receipt of all the necessary evidence.  In England and Wales you can apply online through this government portal.

On behalf of your parent, you will need to supply:

  • A recent digital photo 
  • Suitable proof of identity documents eg birth certificate, driving licence, passport
  • Proof of address
  • National insurance number
  • Some proof of their health problems or disability and/or any relevant benefits 

Eligibility

Of course, not everyone is eligible for a blue badge. There are two types of eligibility criteria.  

  • eligible without further assessment (automatic)
  • eligible subject to further assessment

Automatic eligibility

Automatic eligibility is for people registered blind, in receipt of some disability or armed forces benefits, or a War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement.  

Some councils will also automatically approve and fast track applications from people with a terminal illness who hold a DS1500 report ( (available from your GP or the MacMillan Nursing Trust). 

Further assessment

Applicants requiring further assessment are required to provide more detailed information and upload relevant documents about their medication, treatment, diagnosis and involvement with health care services.  

Permanent disability only

The blue badge regulations do not allow the issue of temporary badges.  Blue badges are only issued to people with a permanent disability. 

What our carents say

Getting a blue badge made life ten times easier

Don't delay - get one!

There was a lot of paperwork but it was worth it

Help us develop our content

Did you find this information helpful?  Let us know what you  think or pass on some advice to other carents by emailing us at [email protected]

October 2020

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