Blue Badge applications for non-visible disabilities

The blue badge criteria includes non-visible (Hidden) disabilities which allows for people who:

  • experience very considerable difficulty whilst walking, which may include very considerable psychological distress
  • or who are at risk of serious harm, when walking, or pose, when walking, a risk of serious harm to any other person

If your disability or illness is primarily affecting your walking this will be covered under the walking disability criteria rather than the non-visible "hidden" disability criteria.

Eligible for a blue badge under the non-visible, "hidden" disability criteria, without further assessment

As part of this criteria, people who receive Personal Independence Payments at 10 points in descriptor E - the "planning and following a journey" part of the mobility award, which is for people who "Cannot undertake any journey because it would cause overwhelming psychological distress" or "significant mental distress" will be automatically entitled to a blue badge.

Please note that only 10 points will be accepted and the applicant will need to provide evidence of this benefit. No other descriptor and no other number of points will qualify and if an applicant receives 12 points they will not be automatically entitled to a blue badge. Further explanation of this can be found on the Department for Transport website under running a blue badge parking scheme.

An example of the qualifying PIP award is shown below.

The heading of the award reads: Mobility - for the 2 mobility activities you scored. Underneath the criteria Planning and following a journey and Moving around are shown and the scores displyed beside them.

Eligible for a blue badge under the non-visible "hidden" disability criteria, with further assessment

If a person is applying online (or a representative is applying on a persons behalf) they must select that they are applying due to a Non-visible (hidden) disability then the appropriate questions will appear. All applicants applying under this criteria will need to provide medical professionals evidence which clearly supports the answers to the questions. Without this, the application will not be approved.

Evidence includes medical professionals letters, letters from consultants or specialist, occupational therapists, physiotherapist, psychotherapists or other professionals who can confirm the diagnosis and clarify the issues facing a person when taking a journey and the elements of the psychological distress the applicant experiences. If you are applying on behalf of a child and they have a SEND report this would be helpful evidence.

As an example: The type of circumstances where a person may qualify for a blue badge is if a person has dementia, Alzheimer's or is on the autistic spectrum to such a level that they: are unable to walk or refuse to walk altogether, they drop to the floor or becoming a dead-weight. They ignore, do not understand or disobey clear instructions. They experience very severe or overwhelming anxiety (e.g. through hypervigilance). They experience an overwhelming sense of fear of public/open/busy spaces or they experience serious harm or cause harm to others.

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