Drivers with Disabilities in New Jersey
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The Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) will issue special license plates or placards to handicapped drivers or to those who transport them. These plates and placards allow the vehicles to be parked in specially reserved disabled parking spaces near building entrances, among other parking privileges. You'll need to carry a handicapped ID card for these plates and placards to be valid.
Disabled Veteran (DV) license plates are different from regular handicapped plates and do not bestow disabled parking privileges.
If you are permanently disabled, you may apply for handicapped license plates for a vehicle you own or drive when you register it. The vehicle can also be owned by a family member who transports you.
You must carry the special handicapped ID card, which will be issued when you apply for the disabled license plates. You must also be present in the vehicle, either as the driver or a passenger, in order to park in special handicapped spaces.
Instead of license plates, you can get a handicapped parking placard to hang from a vehicle's rearview mirror. Placards are available for both temporary and permanent disabilities.
You can use the placard in any vehicle you are in, whether you own it or not. The placard allows you to transfer your disabled parking privileges from vehicle to vehicle (as long as you're in it). You will be issued only one placard.
Display the placard from your vehicle's rear view mirror.
How to Apply for a Permanent Placard
Permanent placards and the accompanying ID cards are free, and you can complete the application process through the mail.
First, call the MVC at (609) 292-6500 or (888) 486-3339 to request an application form. Your physician will need to complete the reverse side of the form certifying that you have a permanent disability. You will fill out the front of the form. Mail the application to:
- Motor Vehicle Commission
- Special Plate Unit
- P.O. Box 015
- Trenton, NJ 08666-0015
Your placard and ID card will be sent to you. Permanent placards must be renewed every three years; a renewal form will be sent to you.
How to Apply for a Temporary Placard
Temporary placards don't come from the MVC. Instead, you can get one from your local chief of police, who will give you the application form.
You'll need your physician's certification on the form stating the expected length of your disability. A temporary placard may be valid for up to six months and can be renewed only once. While you'll apply for the placard from your police department, you'll pay the $4 fee to the MVC.
Temporary Placards From Out of State
Visitors to the state who have a valid temporary disability placard from their home state don't need to apply for one in New Jersey. If you're visiting, however, you'll still want to have a doctor's note with you in case a police officer questions you about your placard. Make sure to have your doctor indicate how long you'll need a handicap placard in case you have to show proof of your disability.
Most other states―but not all―will honor temporary disability placards issued in New Jersey. Refer to our Drivers with Disabilities section for the state you plan to visit to find out whether you need to make additional arrangements before you travel.
Under the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services' Special Benefits Program for the Aged and Disabled (PAAD), discounts are available from the MVC for certain transactions. If you meet the guidelines of this program, for example, you're eligible for a $7.50 discount on your vehicle registration. Call the PAAD hotline at (800) 792-9745 for details.
Other Topics in This Section
- Register Car
- Registration Renewal
- Registration & Insurance
- Replacing a Lost Registration
- RV & Motorhome Registration
- Custom Built Car Registration
- Boat Registration and Licenses
- Title Transfers
- Replacing a Lost Title
- Salvaged Vehicles
- Special Vehicles
- Drivers with Disabilities
- License Plates & Placards
- Smog & Emission Checks
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