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There is now a way to apply for a blue badge online using the link on the Direct Gov website. You can also do a quick online check to see if you are eligible for a blue badge on the Direct Gov Website.

If you would prefer to apply using a paper application form there is one application form which you should use if you are applying for the first time and one if you are renewing your badge. This form is modified from time to time and you will need to contact your local authority for the most up to date version.

How long will it take to process my application?

All blue badge applications (new and renewals) are assessed on an individual basis against Department for Transport (DfT) guidelines. When you apply you may be asked to attend a walking assessment. The timescales are dependant upon the availability of assessment centre appointments.

To renew your blue badge you should make a note of the expiry date and apply four to six weeks before the badge expires. Under normal circumstances it is not necessary to apply more than six weeks before the badge expires, except if the current badge has a serial number that ends in 'R'. This indicates that the badge is reviewable and that eligibility may need to be reassessed with a walking assessment. If this is the case, your application for renewal should be made a minimum of six weeks prior to the expiry date.

It is up to you to remember to renew in plenty of time as some local authorities deal with thousands of applications every month.

Can I have a blue badge for a temporary condition?

No, blue badges are NOT issued for temporary conditions and are generally only issued for permanent conditions. However the DfT is considering a reform to the blue badge process and one of the recommendations from this report is that over the next five years there may be an introduction of a temporary badge which would only be valid for a year. Further information about this proposal can be found on their website http://www.dft.gov.uk

If you receive disability living allowance at the higher rate for mobility, a badge can now be issued to cover this period which may be less than three years. Once this period is nearing an end you will need to complete an application for renewal.

How do I apply for my child?

Generally children under the age of two are not eligible for a blue badge. Children over two may qualify for a blue badge if they have severe mobility problems. Certain children under the age of three may be eligible if they have a disability due to a medical condition and need to travel with bulky equipment or be close to a vehicle for emergency medical treatment.

Who is eligible for a badge?

There are two types of eligibility those people who automatically qualify and those people who qualify in the discretionary category.

You automatically qualify if:

  •  you are blind under the National Assistance Act 1948


 

You may qualify for a blue badge in the discretionary category if:


  •  you have a permanent and severe disability which means you cannot walk or can only walk with severe difficulty. You may be asked to attend a walking assessment. These are carried out by independent health professionals who understand the department for transport guidelines and who will have a copy of your application form. They will talk to you about your disability and will ask you to carry out a walking assessment. You will be informed of the decision within a few days after the assessment.


  •  you can also qualify if you have a severe disability in both arms. To qualify in this category you must be a driver, drive an adapted car, and you must have a severe disability in both arms which means you are unable to operate, or have considerable difficulty operating a parking meter. You have to meet all these criteria to qualify.


Who is NOT eligible for a blue badge?

You will not be eligible for a badge if:


  •  you have a condition that is considered to be temporary, for example, a broken leg


  •  you are awaiting an operation which should improve your condition or you are still recovering from recent surgery or treatment


  •  you have a condition that is considered to be intermittent


  •  you have a disability that is not considered to cause you inability to walk, or very considerable difficulty in walking


  •  children under two are not eligible as children of this age would generally require a pushchair. There is an exception to this, please see the section on this page entitled "how do I apply for my child"


  •  people who are partially sighted do not automatically qualify.


Why was my application for a blue badge rejected?

If you do not qualify for a blue badge you will receive a letter which will detail the reason your application was refused. If you wish to appeal against the decision either because you have additional information that needs to be considered or your walking has deteriorated please contact your local authority.

For general questions about the Blue Badge, you can contact the Initial Enquiry Support Service:

Telephone: 0844 463 0213 (if you live in England)

Telephone: 0844 463 0215 (if you live in Scotland or Wales)

Write to:

Blue Badge Unit

Northgate Information Solutions

Wellington House

Wynyward Park

Billingham

TS22 5TB

Email: bluebadge@northgate-is.com