Drivers With Disabilities
Using the "NH Handicapped Parking Identification Permit"
The NH Handicapped Parking Identification Permit or the Walking Disability Placard is a two-sided, hanger style placard which has the international symbol of access (a wheelchair) on each side. This placard, which is either red for temporary walking disabilities, or blue, for permanent walking disabilities has an identification number, a date of expiration, and the NH State Seal. Also printed on the placard is an identification code for the person to whom the placard is issued which is listed in a database with the NH Division of Motor Vehicles.
The most common uses for this placard are:
(1) When you have a walking disability and you are a passenger in somebody else's vehicle or
(2) When you have a walking disability and your vehicle does not have a wheelchair plate
This placard cannot be used by anybody other than the person to whom it is issued and is only to be used when that person is being transported to or from an accessible parking space. Fraudulent use of the placard carries a fine of $250 (refer to NH RSA 265:69). A law enforcement official may request identification of the driver (or passenger) to prove that the person is the person to whom the plate or placard has been issued. For residents of New Hampshire who have the wheelchair plate or placard, the N.H. Division of Motor Vehicles places the international symbol of accessibility on both the driver's license and the non-driver's I.D.7
The placard must be displayed in such a manner that it may be viewed from the front and rear of the vehicle by hanging it from the front windshield rearview mirror of a vehicle utilizing a parking space reserved for persons with disabilities. When there is no rearview mirror, the placard must be displayed on the dashboard. The hanging placard should be suspended from the rearview mirror only while the vehicle is parked. This placard must be removed when the vehicle is being driven because driving with the placard hanging from the rearview mirror creates a blind spot for both front and rear vision.
Using RESERVED PARKING SPACES for people with walking disabilities:
- You must have a hanging placard or a wheelchair plate to park legally in accessible parking spaces.
- If the plate or placard is in your name, and you are staying inside the vehicle (meaning you are not exiting the vehicle), you should not park in any of the accessible parking spaces (refer to NH RSA 265:74). These parking spaces are intended to be used by individuals with walking disabilities who have the plate or placard and who are getting in/out of their vehicles to conduct business within the area served by these parking spaces. Given the intent of this law, it is an ethical abuse of the privilege for you to occupy this space when an individual who does not have a walking disability and who can otherwise walk from a "regular" parking space is the only person exiting the vehicle.