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Getting from A to B can be harder if you’re disabled, especially if you’re visiting somewhere busy like the supermarket. That’s when a disabled parking badge can really come in handy.

Known as a Blue Badge, it lets you park in certain restricted areas where other people can’t leave their cars. You can also park for free in some areas where there’s a pay and display machine and stay longer on roads where there’s a time limit on parking.

Let’s take a look at how you can apply for a disabled parking badge and when you could get a Penalty Charge Notice.

Getting a Blue Badge

You can get a Blue disabled parking Badge if you:

• are blind,

• receive War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement,

• receive the higher rate of the mobility part of Disability Living Allowance (DLA),

• get the mobility component of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and have problems ‘moving around’,

• got a lump sum benefit from the Armed Forces Compensation scheme and have a permanent and substantial disability, or

• receive a Government grant towards your own vehicle.

Even if these things don’t apply to you, you still might be able to get a Blue Badge but you’ll need an assessment. For example, if you struggle using parking meters or you have a disabled child who finds walking difficult, you could get a Blue Badge. Find out if you can get a disabled parking badge with the Government’s Blue Badge eligibility tool.

Where you can park

With a Blue Badge, you can park:

• on single or double yellow lines for three hours maximum,

• on streets with parking meters or pay and display machines for free,

• in parking bays reserved for Blue Badge holders, or

• on a dotted yellow line without a time limit when other drivers are time-limited.

There might be time limits on some Blue Badge parking bays, so check this before you park.

Penalty Charge Notice

You can’t park anywhere for as long as you want with a Blue Badge. If you break the rules, you’ll get a parking ticket, also known as a Penalty Charge Notice. This might happen if you:

• park on yellow lines for more than three hours,

• don’t display your Blue Badge,

• stay in the car while someone else goes shopping, or

• break another parking rule.

This is just a standard parking ticket so you’ll pay around £70 for a higher level charge or £50 for a lower level charge - but this can vary depending on your local council. A higher level parking charge is more serious – if you break a parking rule on the road, for example – while a lower level parking charge might be if you break a rule on a car park. You can get a discount of 50% of the fine if you pay within 14 days.

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