Ask a Trooper: The ins and outs of handicap plates, placards

Published 10:49 pm Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Ask a Trooper by Troy Christianson

Question: Both my daughter and I have a disability. I have the handicap license plates on my car and she only has a placard. When she drives my car, does she have to use her placard to park?

Answer: The registered license plates are designed for you to be able to park that vehicle in a disabled/handicap parking location. If your daughter has her own permit, she would need to display her permit in the vehicle when she is parked in a designated disabled/handicap parking location, as the permit is designed for her.

Troy Christianson

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Any Minnesota resident who meets one or more of the definitions of a “physically disabled person” can apply to obtain a disability certificate or plates.

Disability certificate (placard):

• Issued to the disabled person, not the vehicle.

• A person may qualify for two certificates if they do not have disability license plates.

• May be displayed on the rear-view mirror or on the dashboard in any vehicle when parked.

• The placard should be taken down from the rear-view mirror while driving.

• Can be used to park in designated disability parking spaces when the person named on the certificate is driving or a passenger in the vehicle.

Disability license plates:

• Issued to a vehicle that is primarily owned by a person with a disability, the parent of a child with a disability or the owner of a commercial rental motor vehicle that has been modified for and is used exclusively by permanently physically disabled people.

A vehicle that is displaying the parking certificate may be parked by or solely for the benefit of a physically disabled person: in a designated disability parking space; in a non-restricted metered parking space without obligation to pay the meter fee, and without regard to time limitation unless otherwise posted; or in a non-metered time limited passenger vehicle space unless otherwise posted.

For additional information, go to: and go to divisions, Driver and Vehicle Services.

You can avoid a ticket — and a crash — if you simply buckle up, drive at safe speeds, pay attention and always drive sober.  Help us drive Minnesota toward zero deaths.

Troy Christianson is a sergeant with the Minnesota State Patrol.