Check if you are eligible
You can check your eligibility when you apply online.
You automatically qualify if:
- you receive the higher rate 'for help with getting around' mobility component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA), or
- you receive 8 points or more for the 'moving around' part of the mobility component of the Personal Independence Payment (PIP). We will need to see evidence of this, or
- you receive 10 points for the 'planning and following a journey' BUT only if the descriptor states that "the applicant cannot undertake any journey because it would cause overwhelming mental distress", or
- you are registered as severely sight impaired (blind) under the National Assistance Act 1948 (partially sighted people do not automatically qualify), or
- you receive War Pensioner's Mobility Supplement, or
- you receive Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) award, tariffs 1-8 and have been assessed by the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency (SPVA) as having a permanent and substantial disability that causes inability to walk or very considerable difficulty walking.
You can see further information about DLA and PIP on our webpage: DLA or PIP Blue Badge automatic eligibility.
You may qualify if:
- you have a permanent and substantial disability which affects your mobility and means you have considerable difficulty in walking; or
- you have a child under 3 years old and need to transport bulky medical equipment for urgent treatment, or always be near a vehicle so they can be treated or driven to a place for treatment for a permanent illness; or
- you drive a vehicle regularly, have a severe disability in both arms and have considerable difficulty working parking meters.
You may qualify if you have a Non-visible (hidden) disability:
which means you:
- cannot undertake a journey without there being a risk of serious harm to your health or safety or the health and safety of another person, or
- cannot undertake a journey without it causing you very considerable psychological or mental distress, or
- have very considerable difficulty when walking (both the physical act and experience of walking).
You can find further information on our webpage about this part of the criteria and you will be expected to provide supporting evidence: non-visible (hidden) disabilities.
The full change of criteria can be seen on the department for transport website under Running a blue badge scheme (GOV.UK, pages 27-30 of PDF)
Walking assessments or expert assessments
At present we are asking our expert assessors to carry out further assessment by reviewing applications along with any medical evidence that you have supplied. They may wish to speak with you over the telephone especially if they need anything clarified.
The expert independent assessors are medical professionals who understand mobility, medication and health issues as well as the Department for Transport blue badge criteria.
We may arrange a walking assessment, the assessors will invite you to an assessment appointment where they will ask you to carry out a short walk whilst they observe you. They will also speak with you about your mobility problems and what is affecting your walking.
If you have applied under the "hidden" or "non-visible disability" criteria we may request an expert assessment. In this case, the assessor will review the application and professional information that was submitted with the application. Once again, the assessor may wish to speak with you or with a parent/carer to find out more about the issues encountered when going from a vehicle to a destination. This type of assessment is less likely to be face to face as any applications made under the "hidden" non-visible criteria will need to provide significant professional evidence.
There is no charge for an assessment.
We will let you know if you need to have an assessment and you will be informed of the outcome within 7 working days of your assessment.
What medical or supporting information can you provide?
Our assessors would like to see recent letters from a doctor, consultant, physiotherapist or other medical professionals which relate to your mobility, also a copy of a recent prescription will be helpful. You can also get a patient information/summary from your GP free of charge which would be helpful for our assessors to see. You do not have to provide letters from doctors however any information from a medical professional that relates to your mobility problems would be beneficial to support you application.
If you are applying under the "hidden", non-visible disability criteria you will be expected to provide significant supporting evidence this could be an EHCP (Education Health & Care Plan), letters from a school SENCO (Special Educational Needs co-ordinator), medical evidence of your diagnosis such as autism, ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), dementia or Alzheimer's and other medical professionals involved in your care that state how your diagnosis affects your moving between a vehicle and destination.
If you are receiving treatment from a hospice and have considerable difficulty walking, you can apply for a blue badge online. Please attach a copy of the DS1500 form or the SR1 booklet (which is replacing the DS1500) with your application. If you do not have a DS1500 form or SR1 booklet but are receiving palliative care and you have a letter from the hospice explaining this you can still apply.
If you are unable to apply online you can ask the hospice to apply on your behalf. With your consent they can email us with the relevant information which will allow us to urgently progress your application. Please let the hospice know the best way to pay the £10 fee if you can pay online and we will email you with a link to make the payment. Please contact your hospice for more information.