Disabled driver laws change from one state to another. It is important that you know the laws not only for the state that you live in, but also for states in which you might be visiting or traveling through.
In the state of Kentucky, a driver is eligible to disabled driver parking privileges if he she:
Must carry oxygen at all times
Requires a wheelchair, crutch, cane, or some other assistive device
Cannot talk 200 feet without requiring outside assistance or stopping to rest
Has a cardiac condition classified as a Class III or IV by the American Heart Association
Has a lung disease that severely limits that person’s ability to breathe
Has severe visual impairment
Suffers from a neurological, arthritic, or orthopedic condition that inhibits their mobility
If you believe that you suffer from one or more of these conditions, you may be eligible for a disabled driver placard and/or license plate in the state of Kentucky.
I do suffer from one of these conditions. Now what do I do to secure a placard and/or license plate?
The next step is to see a licensed physician. This could be a chiropractor, osteopath, ophthalmologist, optometrist, or advanced resident nurse. They will need to verify that you suffer from one or more of the conditions above. Download an Application for Special Registration Plate for Disabled Persons, complete what you can, and then bring this form to your physician and have him or her certify that you have a condition that enables you to receive disabled parking privileges. You must also provide the serial number of the vehicle that is registered in your name. Lastly, submit the application to your closest county clerk’s office.
Kentucky is unique in that they will waive the physician’s certification if your disability is “obvious.” This includes a disability that can be readily identified by the official at the county clerk’s office, or if you have already possessed a Kentucky disabled license plate and/or placard.
It is important to note that Kentucky requires you to have your application for disabled driver privileges notarized.
What is the difference between a disabled driver placard and a license plate?
In the state of Kentucky, you may receive a placard if you have a temporary or permanent disability. License plates, however, you may receive only if you have a permanent disability or are a disabled veteran.
How much does the placard cost?
Disabled parking permits are free to receive and free to replace. Disabled license plates cost 21 dollars, and license plate renewals are also 21 dollars.
How long do I have until I have to renew my disabled parking permit?
In Kentucky, you have two years until you need to renew your parking permit. After this time, you must download and complete the form you filled out when first applying for disabled driver parking privileges. You will then need to submit this form to the nearest county clerk’s office.
Temporary placards are valid up to three months based on your physician’s assessment. Permanent placards are valid up to two years, and licensed plates are valid for one year and expire on July 31.
Does the state of Kentucky offer any other privileges to disabled drivers besides parking?
Yes. In addition to parking, Kentucky offers a Driver Evaluation and Vehicle Modification Program that helps disabled drivers adjust to driving restrictions, and TTD for Hearing Impaired.
Where am I allowed to park with my parking permit?
In Kentucky, you may park anywhere you see the International Symbol of Access. You may not park in areas marked “no parking anytime” or in bus or loading zones.
What if I am a disabled veteran?
Disabled veterans in the state of Kentucky must provide proof of their eligibility. This can be VA certification that you are 100 percent disabled resulting from military service, or a copy of the General Order to authorize your Congressional Medal of Honor.
What if I have misplaced my placard or suspect it has been stolen?
If you suspect that your disabled driver parking placard has been stolen, you should contact law enforcement as soon as possible. If you feel you have misplaced your placard, complete the Application for Disabled Persons Special Parking Permit, fill out an affidavit stating that the original placard has been lost, stolen, or destroyed, and then submit the application to your closest county clerk's office.
Kentucky recognizes disability parking placards and licensed plates from any other state; however, while you are in Kentucky you must comply with Kentucky’s rules and guidelines. Please be sure to familiarize yourself with Kentucky’s laws for disabled drivers if you are visiting or passing through.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Disabled Driving Laws and Permits in Kentucky and was authored by Valerie Johnston.