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Who is eligible for handicapped parking placards?

Ironically, many people who are eligible fail to apply because they are in denial about their disability. Others fear what strangers will think when they see them park in handicapped spots because they have an “invisible” disability like blindness or hearing loss. And then there are able-bodied people who misuse and abuse the system entirely.  

The criteria for eligibility vary state by state but here are some of the most frequent reasons:

  • Cannot walk without the assistance of another person, prosthetic device, wheelchair or other assistive device.
  • Is severely limited in the ability to walk due to an arthritic, neurological or orthopedic condition.
  • Has a Class III or Class IV cardiac condition according to the standards set by the American Heart Association.
  • Uses portable oxygen.
  • Has permanently lost the use of or is missing a hand or arm.

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