In the State of Texas, if you have a disability, you can apply for various permits under Texas law that will entitle you to park in designated spaces, and at no cost in metered spaces.
Summary of Texas disabled driver laws
If you are a disabled driver in Texas, you can obtain a blue placard for permanent disabilities, a red placard for temporary disabilities, and a disabled veterans’ plate if you are a military veteran with a disability. Special plates are also available for people with permanent disabilities.
If you hold a valid plate or placard from another state, the State of Texas will accord you the same rights and privileges as it does disabled residents of Texas.
If you are in Texas to obtain medical treatment, you can apply to the State of Texas for a temporary disabled placard that will be valid for six months.
In order to apply for a disability placard or plate in Texas, you must complete the Application for Persons with Disabilities Parking Placard and/or License Plate. You must also provide certification from a medical practitioner to the effect that you are disabled. This can be provided by a medical doctor, optometrist, podiatrist, advanced practice nurse, or physician’s assistant who is licensed in Texas, New Mexico, Louisiana, Arkansas or Oklahoma, or who works for Veterans’ Affairs or the US military.
Fees vary from county to county, and can be paid using a money order, check or cashier’s check. Cash is not accepted. You can pay your fees by mail, and you must include a copy of your Texas driver’s license or other photo identification. You can also apply in person at your local tax office, and again, you must bring photo identification.
Make sure to keep a copy of your application in case you need to renew, or replace a missing permit.
Disabled veteran plates
If you are a disabled veteran, and your disability is the result of your military service, and you own or lease your vehicle, you can apply for a disabled veteran plate. You will need to complete the Application for Disabled Veteran License Plates and Parking Placards and provide proof of eligibility, either on the application form or by means of a letter from Veterans’ Affairs.
In Texas, you will have to renew your placards or plates. Permanent placards are good for four years, and temporary placards are good for six months. Disability license plates have to be renewed annually.
To renew a placard, you will need to either bring a copy of your original application form, or fill out the application form again, and mail it or bring it to the Texas DMV. Plates are renewed when you renew your vehicle registration.
Confiscated plates or placards
If you have had your placard or plate taken away because of misuse, you will not automatically be entitled to a replacement. You will have to contact the DMV at (888)368-4689 to request a hearing, at which it will be determined whether you qualify for a replacement.
As a disabled driver in the State of Texas, you are entitled to certain rights and privileges. You have to apply for them, though, and fill out the required paperwork.