Delaware Code Title 21. Motor Vehicles § 2135. Parking permits for persons with disabilities which limit or impair the ability to walk;  parking;  penalties

(a) A person or a member of the person's household who has a disability that is permanent with no prognosis for improvement as described in § 2134(a)(1)--(6) of this title or who has a physical disability which is not permanent but which substantially limits or impairs the person's or household member's ability to walk for no less than 5 weeks and which is so severe that the person or household member would endure a hardship or be subject to a risk of injury without a temporary parking permit for persons with disabilities, or a person who is age 85 or older, whether or not that person has a disability, or an organization that regularly in its course of business transports persons with disabilities may apply to the Department for a permanent or temporary parking permit, whichever is appropriate, on a form provided by the Department.  The form must state:

(1) That a permanent permit for a person with a disability, or for a person 85 or older, or for an organization that regularly in its course of business transports persons with disabilities expires after 3 years and a temporary permit for a person with a disability may not exceed 90 days;

(2) That a licensed physician, a physician assistant who is supervised by a licensed physician, or an advanced practice nurse who is employed by or who has a collaborative agreement with a licensed physician, must certify a disability and indicate whether the applicant or household member needs a permanent parking permit or a temporary parking permit;

(3) That an applicant 85 or older need only submit proof of age that is satisfactory to the Department;  and

(4) The possible penalties for intentionally and falsely representing that an applicant or household member is qualified to obtain a permanent or temporary parking permit.

 An applicant or a household member who is eligible for a special license plate pursuant to § 2134 of this title may also apply for 1 permanent parking permit under this section.  A parking permit is issued in the form of a removable placard capable of hanging from or being attached to the front windshield rearview mirror of a vehicle.

(b) A permanent or temporary parking permit may be issued under this section only if the applicant submits proof satisfactory to the Department that the applicant or household member has a disability that is permanent with no prognosis for improvement as described in § 2134(a)(1)--(6) of this title, or that the applicant or household member has a physical disability which is not permanent but which substantially limits or impairs the applicant's or household member's ability to walk for no less than 5 weeks and which is so severe that the applicant or household member would endure a hardship or be subject to a risk of injury without a temporary parking permit for persons with disabilities, or that the applicant or household member is 85 or older, or that the applicant is an organization that regularly in its course of business transports persons with disabilities.  Satisfactory proof of a disability must include the signature of a licensed physician, a physician assistant who is supervised by a licensed physician, or an advanced practice nurse who is employed by or who has a collaborative agreement with a licensed physician, on a Department special license plate or placard application form on which the physician, a physician assistant who is supervised by a licensed physician, or an advanced practice nurse who is employed by or who has a collaborative agreement with a licensed physician, indicates the applicant's or household member's disability.

(c) The Department may not charge a fee for issuing or reissuing a parking placard.  However, the Department shall charge a fee to offset the actual replacement cost of replacing a lost or damaged placard.

(d)(1) A permanent permit issued under this section for a person who has a disability stated in § 2134(a) of this title, or for a person 85 or older, or to an organization that regularly in its course of business transports persons with disabilities expires 3 years from the date of issue.  However, another permanent permit may be issued upon reapplication.

(2) A temporary permit issued under this section for an applicant who has a physical disability which is not permanent but which substantially limits or impairs the person's ability to walk for no less than 5 weeks and which is so severe that the person would endure a hardship or be subject to a risk of injury without a temporary parking permit for persons with disabilities expires at the discretion of the Department, but may not exceed 90 days from the date of issue.  However, another temporary permit may be issued upon reapplication.

(3) There is no limit to the number of times that a person may reapply for a permanent or temporary parking permit issued under this section.  However, for each reapplication for a temporary parking permit, the applicant must comply with the requirements for an initial application as set forth in subsection (a) of this section.  A new certification is not required for applicants or applicants’ household members who have a permanent disability as described in § 2134(a)(1)--(6) of this title;  however, the applicant shall submit a written certification that the applicant continues to require the parking permit for the reason or reasons it was initially issued.

(e) A parking permit for a person with a disability which limits or impairs the ability to walk, or for a person 85 or over, or for an organization pursuant to subsection (i) of this section must be in the form of a removable windshield placard of a size and design determined by the Department.  A permanent parking placard must be blue;  a temporary parking placard must be red;  an organization parking placard must be green.  The information on the placard must be large enough to be read clearly from outside a motor vehicle when the placard is hanging from the vehicle's front windshield rearview mirror, or if there is no front windshield rearview mirror, the placard must be displayed on the dashboard and be able to be read by a person outside of the vehicle.  Both sides of the placard must contain the following:  the words “State of Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles” and “Remove placard when vehicle is in motion,” the internationally recognized wheelchair symbol of access, an identification number, and the expiration date.  The expiration date must appear in letters or numerals at least 1 inch tall.  Only 1 placard may be issued initially to an applicant;  however, upon written request, the Department shall issue 1 additional placard to an applicant who does not also have a special license plate issued pursuant to § 2134 of this title.

(f)(1) A person or organization for whom a parking placard is issued under this section or under a similar statute of any other state or country may park in parking spaces or zones restricted to use only by persons with disabilities and in unmetered parking spaces or zones restricted as to the length of parking time permitted;  furthermore, if such a parking space is assigned to a specific person with a disability as that person's residential or business parking space, that person may use the space without any time restriction.

(2) A person who is driving a vehicle with a parking placard issued under this section or under a similar statute of any other state or country may not park:

a. In a space or zone where stopping, standing or parking is prohibited to all vehicles;

b. In a space or zone which is reserved for other special types of vehicles;

c. In a space or zone assigned to another person for the other person's residential or business use;

d. Where a local ordinance prohibits parking during heavy traffic periods in morning, afternoon or evening rush hours;  or

e. Where parking clearly would present a traffic hazard.

(3) The person for whom a red or blue parking placard is issued under this section or under a similar statute of any other state or country must be the driver of or a passenger in the vehicle displaying the parking placard whenever the vehicle parks in a parking space or zone restricted for use only by vehicles with a special license plate or parking placard for persons with disabilities.

(g) A placard issued under this section is for the exclusive and personal use of the person or organization for whom it is issued and may not be used by any other person or organization.

(h) A parking placard must be returned to the Department:

(1) When the person or organization for whom it was issued reapplies for a placard;

(2) When the placard expires;

(3) When the person or organization for whom it was issued no longer needs it, is no longer disabled, or no longer regularly in its course of business transports persons with disabilities;

(4) Upon the death of the person for whom it was issued.

(i) Notwithstanding any provisions of this Code to the contrary, the Department may, without the certification of a licensed physician, a physician assistant who is supervised by a licensed physician, or an advanced practice nurse who is employed by or who has a collaborative agreement with a licensed physician, issue a green parking placard upon application by an organization that regularly in its course of business transports persons with disabilities which limit or impair the ability to walk if the organization presents proof satisfactory to the Department that the organization regularly in its course of business transports persons with disabilities.  A green parking placard may be used only when at least 1 person who is entitled to obtain a permanent or temporary parking placard pursuant to subsection (a) of this section is being transported and only when an employee or volunteer staff person of the organization is the driver of the vehicle.

(j)(1) A person or organization who intentionally presents false information to a licensed physician, a physician assistant who is supervised by a licensed physician, or an advanced practice nurse who is employed by or who has a collaborative agreement with a licensed physician, or to the Department in an attempt to obtain a parking placard under this section shall be guilty of an unclassified misdemeanor.  For the first offense, the person or organization shall receive a mandatory fine of $100.  For each subsequent like offense, the person or organization shall receive a mandatory fine of $200 or be imprisoned for not less than 10 nor more than 30 days, or both.  Any other violation of this section is a violation.  Justices of the peace have jurisdiction over violations of this section.

(2) A summons may be attached to an unattended vehicle found in violation of any of the provisions of this section by any police officer or State Police Academy cadet authorized to issue a summons for a violation of this section.  It is prima facie evidence that the person or organization in whose name the unattended vehicle is registered is responsible for the violation.

(k) The Department may adopt rules and regulations that are reasonable or necessary for the implementation of this section.


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