Do I qualify for a Blue Badge?
If you have severe mobility problems or are registered blind you may be entitled to a blue badge allowing you to park in normally restricted areas.
If you receive the higher rate of Disability Living Allowance mobility component or are registered blind you will automatically be entitled to be issued with a Blue Badge. If neither of these apply to you, you are only eligible for a Blue Badge if:
• you have a disability that is permanent and substantial and
• you can not walk or have considerable difficulty walking or
• you have a severe disability in both arms to the extent that you are unable to use a parking meter or
• you are applying for a child aged under three years old who must always be accompanied by bulky medical equipment which can not be carried around without difficulty or
• you are applying for a child aged under three years old who needs to be kept near a motor vehicle to be given urgent medical treatment in that vehicle, or driven quickly to a place where urgent medical treatment can be given
Please note – the rules about eligibility for a Blue Badge have changed considerably. Even if you have been issued with a Blue Badge in the past, this does not mean that you will be able to get one again.
You may be asked to attend an Independent Medical Assessment to support your application, if this is the case you will be notified by letter of an appointment date and this could extend the time taken to process your badge.
How do I apply for a Blue Badge or renew my badge?
You can apply for a Blue Badge from us if you are resident in Suffolk. The quickest and easiest way to apply for a Blue Badge is online via the Directgov website. You can also apply through Suffolk County Council by downloading an application form (PDF, 519 KB) from our website or requesting one from Customer First. Please read the guidance notes (PDF 644KB) carefully before filling it in.
You can also apply to replace a badge that has expired, or is due to expire shortly.
If you wish to apply online via Directgov you will be asked a few questions to see if you may be eligible before applying. These questions will only take two or three minutes. Once you have applied, your form will be forwarded to Suffolk County Council for a decision.
What do I need to complete an online application?
- National Insurance number
- Driving licence number
- details of your current badge, if you have one
- details of any medication you are taking
What you will need to send with your application or forward to us under separate cover if applying online
- your online reference number
- a cheque for £10 made payable to Suffolk County Council with the applicants name printed on the back
- a passport photo (please print the name of the applicant on the back of the photo)
- photocopy of supporting evidence regarding your medical condition or disability (please refer to guidance notes)
- photocopy of proof of identity (please refer to guidance notes)
- photocopy of proof of ID (please refer to guidance notes)
- proof of your DLA award or blind registration
If you do not send us all the information that we need with your application form, your form may be returned to you and there will be a delay in processing your application.
If you have completed the online form on the Directgov website please make sure that you also give us the reference number provided by them so that we can match your paperwork to your application form.
How long will it take?
If you send us all the information that we need with a fully completed application form we are hoping that you should receive a decision from us within 14 days.
If you are applying for a Blue Badge because your existing Blue Badge is expiring please send us your fully completed application form at least three weeks before your existing Blue Badge is due to expire. There is no need to apply any earlier than this as we cannot hold payment for this service longer than 28 days except in cases where you have been asked to attend as assessment clinic.
Will I need to send anything else?
You will need to enclose the following along with your completed application form:
- A recent colour passport-sized photograph (approximately 3.5cm x 4.5cm or 1" x 1¼") that you have signed on the back, and on the application form to confirm they are a true likeness of you. The photograph must be taken against a light coloured background and you must be facing the camera. No one else must appear in the photograph. The photograph must be no more than three months old. In cases of an unsuccessful application, the photograph will only be returned if a self-addressed envelope is enclosed with application form. If you are applying for a Blue Badge and you are terminally ill and have a life expectancy of less than six months, you do not need to send us a photograph. A photograph is also not required if you are an organisation applying for a Blue Badge.
- A cheque or postal order for £10 made out to Suffolk County Council If your application for a Blue badge is not successful your cheque will be returned to you or you will be issued with a refund. You do not have to pay this fee if you are terminally ill and have a life expectancy of six months or less. If sending a postal order please note you must obtain a receipt for this which will be required as proof of purchase for you to get a refund from the post office if your application is unsuccessful.
If you disagree with our decision and would like to us to reconsider, please send us your reasons in writing within one calendar month of receiving our letter, together with any additional supporting information.
The application will then be reviewed by another assessor and if we have not done so already, we may ask you to attend an appointment with our Independent Mobility Assessor.
When renewing my Blue Badge can I re-use the photo from the existing badge?
No, the photo you provide must be no more than three months old.
My Blue Badge has been stolen, lost, defaced or faded - what can I do?
You can report a lost or stolen badge through the DirectGov website.
Alternatively you can download and complete a replacement declaration form (PDF, 30 KB) or get one from Customer First. Please also provide a new photograph and another cheque for £10 made payable to Suffolk County Council. You will need to provide a lost or stolen property reference number from the police.
The badge holder recently died. What should I do with the Blue Badge?
Please return it to the Blue Badge Team at Customer First PO Box 771, Needham Market, IP6 8WB . A letter is not necessary but we do need to know the date of death so that we can amend our records. You may keep the photograph if you wish. Please cut the badge in half before returning it to the Blue Badge Team.
How do I notify you of a change of address/name or other details?
To notify us of a change of address, please contact us either by email to BlueBadgeTeam@suffolk.gcsx.gov.uk or in writing to The Blue Badge Team, PO Box 771, Needham Market, Suffolk, IP6 8WB.
To notify us of a change of name you need to download and complete a replacement declaration form (PDF, 30 KB) and provide evidence of your name change e.g. a marriage, divorce or deed poll certificate, together with a new photograph. Please note as this requires a new badge to be printed there will be a charge of £10. This can be paid by cheque or postal order to Suffolk County council. The new badge will be issued until the expiry date of the old badge.
Information on disabled parking bays