Disabled Parking Permits in Illinois

How to obtain plates and placards

To qualify for disability parking plates or placards (sometimes incorrectly referred to as  “handicapped stickers” or “handicapped hangtags”) in Illinois an applicant must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Patient is restricted by a lung disease to such a degree that the personʼs forced (respiratory) expiratory volume (FEV) is one second, when measured by spirometry, is less than one liter.
  • Patient uses a portable oxygen device.
  • Patient has a Class III or Class IV cardiac condition according to the standards set by the American Heart Association.
  • Patient cannot walk without the assistance of a wheelchair, walker, crutch, brace, and other prosthetic device or without the assistance of another person.
  • Patient is severely limited in the ability to walk due to an arthritic, neurological or orthopedic condition.
  • Patient cannot walk 200 feet without stopping to rest because of one of the above five conditions.
  • Patient is missing a hand or arm or has permanently lost the use of a hand or arm.

The Application

You can seek either plates or a placard by completing and sending in Illinois’s application for disability parking identification. You may also apply at your local DMV.

Types of Disability Access Parking Plates and Placards in Illinois

The Secretary of State’s office issues four types of parking license plates and placards:

  • Plates. The difference between disability plates and a permanent placard is that the plates must stay permanently affixed to the vehicle for which they are issued. Disability license plates are only issued to: (1) a person with a permanent disability who owns a vehicle (title to the vehicle must be in the disabled person’s name), or (2) a vehicle owner who is parent or legal guardian of a minor with disabilities, or (3) an immediate family member who owns a vehicle, resides in the same house as the person with disabilities and is responsible for transporting the person with disabilities. Disability license plates allow the authorized holder to park in spaces reserved for persons with disabilities such as at a mall, grocery or retail store, etc. These plates DO NOT exempt the authorized holder from parking meter fees and time limitations at parking meters.
  • Meter-Exempt Permanent Placards — Issued to persons with permanent disabilities who have significant impairments that cause difficulty in accessing a parking meter. This placard also allows the authorized holder to park in spaces reserved for persons with disabilities such as at a mall, grocery or retail store, etc., and exempts the authorized holder from parking meter fees and time limitations at parking meters that exceed a 30-minute time limit statewide. To be eligible for this placard, the person with the disability must have a valid Illinois driver’s license, and their physician must certify that they meet the criteria as outlined on the certification form. This placard DOES exempt the authorized holder from parking meter fees.
  • Non Meter-Exempt Permanent Placards — Issued to persons with permanent disabilities who still have the ability to access the parking meter and allows the authorized holder to park in spaces for persons with disabilities such as a mall, grocery or retail store, etc. This placard DOES NOT exempt the authorized holder from parking meter fees and time limitations at parking meters.
  • Temporary Placards — Issued to persons with a temporary disability and are valid for the length of time indicated by the certifying physician, not to exceed six months if issued by the Secretary of State and 90 days if issued by a local municipality. This placard DOES NOT exempt the authorized holder from parking meter fees and time limitations at parking meters.
  • Organization Placards – Issued to organizations that transport persons with disabilities free of charge and expire on April 30, 2018. Organizational placards allow the authorized holder to park in spaces reserved for persons with disabilities when transporting persons with disabilities. This placard DOES NOT exempt the authorized holder from parking meter fees and time limitations at parking meters.

Abusing Disabled Parking Privileges

A 2012 law in Illinois increased the initial fine for unauthorized use of a disability license plate or parking decal to $600 (up from $500), and doubles the initial fine for creating or possessing fraudulent disability plates and using a genuine disability placard in the absence of the authorized holder ($1000, up from $500). The new law also imposes an initial fine of $1000 on a physician or other specified healthcare professional who knowingly falsifies a certification for a person who does not have a disability to entitle him or her to a disability license plate or parking decal.

FEATURED LISTINGS FROM NOLO
Swipe to view more

Talk to a Lawyer

Want to talk to an attorney? Start here.

How It Works

  1. Briefly tell us about your case
  2. Provide your contact information
  3. Connect with local attorneys
NOLO-web4:DRU1.6.12.2.20161011.41205