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Parking - Disabled People

 

EUROPEAN BLUE BADGE SCHEME - DISABLED PARKING CONCESSION

The Blue Badge Scheme provides a national arrangement across the UK and a partnership arrangment in other European Union member states.

The scheme is designed to help severely disabled people live independent lives by knowing that when they reach their destination, either as a passenger or driver, that they will be able to park near to the venue and therefore have easier access to the services they want to use.

The Blue Badge parking concessions only allow badge holders to park on-street.  They do not apply to off-street car parks, such as supermarket car parks or on privately owned roads.  However there may be special concessions for badge holders in these areas and you should check for signs.

REFORMS

Following a comprehensive review of the blue badge scheme in Scotland (and at UK level) the Scottish Government announced a series of reforms of the Scheme which came into force from 1st January 2012.

Blue badge holders who wish to re-apply for a badge should ensure they check the eligibility criteria below.  The leaflet 'WLC Changes to Blue Badge Scheme' provides additional information on the reforms and changes within West Lothian.

Please note that West Lothian Council will no longer issue a badge from any of our locations.  Also, existing old style blue badges will remain valid until the expiry date on the card.

BLUE BADGES WILL REMAIN FREE FOR WEST LOTHIAN RESIDENTS.

The responsibility for administering the scheme remains with local authorities.  West Lothian Council will process applications, determine eligibility, arrange mobility assessments (where applicable) and order badges from the supplier at national level.

BLUE BADGE ELIGIBILITY

The eligibility criteria is set by legislation laid before the Scottish Parliament. This criteria is split into two parts - "without further assessment" (automatic) and "subject to further assessment" (discretionary).

In Scotland, you are automatically entitled to a bue badge if you are over two years old and: 

  • you are registerd blind; or 
  • you receive the higher rate of the mobility component of the Disability Living Allowance (DLA); or
  • you receive the mobility component of Personal Independence Payment (PIP); or
  • you receive a War Pensioners' mobility supplement; or 
  • you have received an award under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) within tariffs 1-8. 

If you do not meet any of the above automatic criteria then you may qualify for a blue badge if you are over two years old and:

  • have a permanent and substantial disability which means you are unable to walk or virtually unable to walk; or
  • have a temporary, but substantial, disability which means you are unable to walk or virtually unable to walk which is likely to last for a period of at least 12 months but less than 3 years; or 
  • drive a motor vehicle regularly, have a severe disability in both arms and are unable to operate, or have considerable difficulty in operating, parking meters.

If you are applying under one of the above criteria then West Lothian Council may request that you attend an independent mobility assessment as a means of checking your eligibility. 

There are special rules for children under the age of three years.  A parent or guardian may apply for a badge for their child, if the child:

  • has a medical condition requiring the transportation of bulky medical equipment at all times; or
  • they must always be kept near a motor vehicle on account of a medical condition so that they can, if necessary, be treated for that condition in the vehicle or taken quickly in the vehicle to a place where they can be so treated.

If you are unsure whether these questions apply to your child then please read the guidance notes accompanying the relevent application form - see How to Apply.

HOW TO APPLY FOR A BLUE BADGE

If you think that you qualify for a Blue Badge then you must complete the relevant application form.  If you are applying under the "automatic" criteria then download and complete the form called WLC BB Application - Automatic.  If you do not qualify automatically then download and complete the form WLC BB Application - Discretionary.  These forms are available from our download section at the bottom of this page.

Completed application forms should be taken to your local Council Information Service (new window) office or West Lothian Council Library (new window)

Please note that unfortunately we are unable to process applications at Pumpherston and Blackridge Libraries. 

All applications must be accompanied with the appropriate evidence:

  • Proof of identity e.g. passport, driving licence etc; and
  • Proof of address e.g. council tax bill, bank statement; and
  • Proof of entitlement e.g. award letter dated in last 12 months; or
  • Supporting evidence e.g. hospital report - discretionary applications only

Please note that West Lothian Council will not issue a blue badge on the basis of a letter from your GP however you may still submit this as evidence in support of your application.

All applications will be initally checked and recorded by our CIS and library staff.  Our Blue Badge Administration team will process the applications, including determing eligibility,  and upload all required data to the national database.  The badge will then be ordered, if applicable, from the national suppler and sent direct to our customers within 5 working days of the order being placed. 

Organisations who wish to apply for a blue badge should complete the new application form available from our download section.  Completed forms along with any other documents should be posted to the address shown on the form.

PHOTOGRAPHS

If you are attending one of our locations in person then there is no need to provide a photograph for your blue badge.  We have installed webcams in our CIS and Libraries which will allow the staff there to take a digital photo of you for use on the newly designed badge. 

If someone is applying on your behalf or you are applying by post then you must include a passport style photograph with your application.  

EXPIRED BADGES

A Blue Badge normally lasts for 3 years.  At the end of the period stated on your existing badge you will need to re-apply and supply up to date evidence of your entitlement and address.  The same application form should be used when re-applying. 

We encourage customers who are applying under the "automatic" eligibility criteria (listed above) to re-apply at least 2 weeks before your existing badge expires to allow for the additional time involved in the process.

If you do not qualify under the "automatic" eligibility criteria and are re-applying using the "discrectionary" application form then we strongly encourage you to submit this application at least 3-4 weeks before the expiry date on your existing badge.  You may be required to attend a mobility assessment to establish your continuing eligibility for a badge. 

REPLACEMENT BADGES

If you lose your old style badge or it is stolen, defaced, faded, etc then you do not need to complete a form.  Simply visit one of our locations and our staff there will process your request as well as take a digital photograph of you for the new style badge.  If you are unable to attend in person then you may be required to send an up to date passport syle photograph of yourself before we can place the order for your badge.

PARKING CLOCKS

Anyone who receives a new style badge after 1st January 2012 will receive a parking clock as part of the pack that is sent to you.  Legislation in England and Wales requires badge holders to display this due to time limitations that are in place. 

YOUR PERSONAL DETAILS

West Lothian Council may share the information you have provided on the application form with other government organisations for the prevention and detection of fraud (further information can be found under National Fraud Initiative (new window))

CONTACTS

Further information can be obtained by telephoning our Customer Contact Centre on 01506 280000, by emailing customer.service@westlothian.gov.uk or by visiting any of our Council Information Service (new window) offices or local Library (new window).

Updated: 22/12/11

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