Mobility Parking Scheme
The Mobility Parking Scheme (MPS) provides parking concessions to people with mobility disabilities. Roads and Maritime Services issues a licence-style card that includes your photo and other security features to protect the integrity of the scheme.
The provision in NSW law that provides for the Mobility Parking Scheme can be found at Part 6, Division 2 of the Road Transport (General) Regulation 2013.
Types of permits
There are two types of permit available to people with a disability:
- Individual (blue card) – issued for five years to eligible people whose disability is permanent
- Temporary (red card) – issued for up to six months to eligible people whose disability is temporary. A temporary permit may be renewed for up to six months (providing 12 months in total).
A third type of permit (green card) is also available to organisations that provide transport for people who meet the eligibility requirements.
Australian Disability Parking Scheme
The Australian Disability Parking Scheme is an Australia-wide scheme that aims to harmonise all state and territory disability parking programs.
When you apply for a Mobility Parking Scheme permit in NSW, you’ll also be issued an Australian Disability Parking Permit. You’ll need to display your NSW Mobility Parking Scheme permit in the plastic sleeve of the Australian Disability Parking Permit when using it to park.
See Displaying your Mobility Parking Scheme permit for more information on the correct way to display your permit when parking.
To be eligible for a Mobility Parking Scheme permit, you must have a disability. This is defined by legislation as someone:
- Who is unable to walk due to the permanent or temporary loss of use of one or both legs or other permanent medical or physical condition, or
- Who is unable to walk because of other permanent medical or physical condition, or
- Whose physical condition is detrimentally affected as a result of walking 100 metres, or
- Who requires the use of crutches, a walking frame, callipers, scooter, wheelchair or other similar mobility aid.
Mobility Parking Scheme permits are also available to people who are permanently blind. Guidelines for permanent blindness from the Commonwealth Social Security Act 1991 are:
- Visual acuity on the Snellen Scale after correction by suitable lenses must be less than 6/60 in both eyes, or
- Constriction to within 10 degrees of fixation in the better eye irrespective of corrected visual acuity, or
- A combination of visual defects in the same degree of visual impairment as that occurring in points 1 or 2.
Mobility Parking Scheme permits can be issued to people three years of age and above.
A Clinically Recognisable Disability (CRD) is a permanent disability certified by a doctor for the purposes of issuing a Mobility Parking Scheme permit.
If you meet the Clinically Recognisable Disability criteria, you do not need a doctor to certify your disability when you renew your card. You only need to provide a doctor’s certification when you first apply for a Mobility Parking Scheme permit, or if you already hold a permit when you become eligible for Clinically Recognisable Disability status.
Your renewal notice will state whether or not you need to provide a medical report to renew your permit.
The following conditions are considered Clinically Recognisable Disabilities:
- Leg amputations
- Motor Neurone disease
- Cerebral Palsy
- Chromosomal or syndromic conditions
- Neurodegenerative disorders
- Neuromuscular conditions
This list has been developed in consultation with the NSW Disability Council and with reference to criteria used by Centrelink for carer allowance applications.
Roads and Maritime does not record the details of your disability, only whether or not you meet the criteria.
Fitness to drive
Roads and Maritime has a responsibility to ensure that all NSW licence holders are medically fit to drive. If you hold a NSW driver/rider licence when you apply for a Mobility Parking Scheme permit, your medical fitness to drive will also be assessed.
If you’ve not already notified Roads and Maritime of a medical condition on your driver licence, you’ll need to provide a medical report.
If you do not wish to provide a medical report, you may withdraw your application for a Mobility Parking Scheme permit, or you may surrender your NSW driver/rider licence.
See Are you fit to drive? for more information.
To apply for a permit, you’ll need to:
- Download and complete a Mobility Parking Scheme Application Form (or pick one up from any registry or service centre)
- Have the medical certificate on the application form signed by a medical doctor, confirming that you meet the eligibility criteria
- If you also hold a NSW driver/rider licence and you have not informed Roads and Maritime of any medical condition on your licence, you may also need the medical report section on the application form completed by your doctor
- For an individual card, the medical certificate is valid for six months from the date the doctor signs the form
- For a temporary card, the medical certificate is valid for three months from the date the doctor signs the form
Once you’ve got your medical certificate, you’ll need to go to a registry or service centre in person. In some cases, a representative can apply on your behalf. See Representatives for information.
Once you’ve paid the fee, your photo will be taken, unless you are exempt from the photo requirement. Your Mobility Parking Scheme permit will be posted to you and cannot access parking spaces and concessions until you receive your permit in the mail.
Renewing your permit
You’ll receive a renewal notice approximately six weeks before your permit expires.
To renew your permit, you’ll need to:
- Download and complete a Mobility Parking Scheme Application form (or pick one up from any registry or service centre)
- Have the medical certificate on the application form signed by a medical doctor, confirming that you meet the eligibility criteria unless you meet the Clinically Recognisable Disability criteria and this is already recorded on Roads and Maritime systems. Your renewal notice will state whether you need a medical certificate or not.
Once you’ve got your medical certificate, you’ll need to go to a registry or Service NSW centre in person. In some cases, a representative can renew on your behalf. See Representatives for information.
Once you’ve paid the fee, your photo will be taken, unless you are exempt from the photo requirement. Your Mobility Parking Scheme permit will be posted to you and you cannot access parking spaces and concessions until you receive your permit in the mail.
Replacing your permit
If your permit is lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed you can apply for a replacement.
If possible, you should also provide the permit you need to replace. If you can’t hand it in (for example because it's been lost or stolen), you’ll need to complete a declaration that confirms it’s no longer in your possession.
Your new permit will have the same expiry date as the old permit.
Once a replacement is issued, the old permit is revoked and can no longer be displayed in a vehicle. Heavy penalties apply for displaying a revoked permit.
If you later find your old permit, you must hand it in at any registry or service centre, or post it to:
Team Leader Drives Assurance
Roads and Maritime Services
PO Box 3035
Parramatta NSW 2124
Proving your identity
To prove who you are when applying for, or renewing a permit, you’ll need to provide:
- A NSW photo driver/rider licence that is current, or that expired within the last two years. Or, two documents, one from List 1 and one from List 2
- In recognition of the special circumstances of some applicants, two documents from List 2, such as a current Medicare card and Pensioner Concession Card, are acceptable.
All other requirements for proof of identity documents continue to apply, for example they must be original. See Proving your identity for more information.
Changed your name or other personal details?
See Changing your personal details for information.
Representatives – applying or renewing on behalf of a person with a disability
For applicants under the age of 16, and applicants who qualify for a photo exemption, a representative may attend a registry or service centre to apply for a Mobility Parking Scheme permit on their behalf.
If you’re attending as the representative of the applicant, you must provide your own proof of identity as well as the applicant’s.
Mobility Parking Scheme permits are similar to driver licences, with security features such as holograms and a photo of the card holder. These features help prevent possible misuse of cards.
From 18 June 2018, you may have the option of using an existing valid photo stored in the Roads and Maritime system when you renew or replace your Mobility Parking Scheme permit. If you don’t want to use this existing photo, a new photograph can also be taken.
Exemptions from being photographed
Applicants who are under the age of 16 are automatically exempt from having their photo taken.
For other applicants, where there may not be an existing photo available, photo exemptions will only be granted where the applicant suffers from facial disfigurement, or has mobility disabilities so severe that they cannot attend a registry or service centre in person. In both instances, a supporting letter from a medical doctor is required.
To apply for a photo exemption, send a letter of request along with a completed application form and a supporting letter from a medical doctor to:
Team Leader Drives Assurance
Roads and Maritime Services
PO Box 3035
Parramatta NSW 2124
If approved, we’ll give you a letter of exemption that you or your representative must bring to the registry or service centre when you apply for, or renew your permit.
Displaying your Mobility Parking permit
You must display both your NSW Mobility Parking Scheme permit (licence-style card) and your Australian Disability Parking Permit (large purple card) in order to obtain parking concessions.
Insert your NSW permit into the clear sleeve of the Australian Disability Parking Permit. The side marked THIS SIDE UP should be facing out, so that your personal details and photo cannot be seen.
Attaching the permits to your vehicle
Your permits should be displayed clearly on the left hand (passenger) side of your vehicle.
If this isn’t practical, place the permits in an area where they can be clearly seen from outside the vehicle.
The permits must not block the driver’s vision while the vehicle is in motion. Make sure the side marked ‘Display this side’ is showing at all times when in use to obtain parking concessions.
You can use a suction cup to attach the permits to the windscreen or any other surface, or you can use any other method you prefer to display the permits.
Using an interstate or overseas permit in NSW
Provided it is current and valid, an interstate or overseas disability parking permit can be used in NSW.
Please refer to the Commonwealth Government Australian Disability Parking Scheme website for more information.
Similarly, you can use a current and valid NSW Mobility Parking Scheme permit in other Australian states and territories. Be aware that parking concessions vary between states and territories – contact the relevant authority for detailed information.
Mobility Parking Scheme cheats
The public can report abuse of the NSW Mobility Parking Scheme, by:
- Phoning 1300 884 899
- Completing the online contact form.
Roads and Maritime accepts reports where:
- You know a permit holder and allege they do not have a disability. Roads and Maritime will assess the complaint and investigate when appropriate
- You see a person who doesn’t appear to have a disability using a permit. Roads and Maritime will assess the complaint and investigate when appropriate
- You believe a medical practitioner has incorrectly approved a permit. Roads and Maritime will consult with the appropriate medical body.
Roads and Maritime cannot accept anonymous calls. Callers or people emailing in a report will need to provide their personal contact details, and details of the alleged misuse of the permit. The Mobility Parking Scheme permit number or the name of the permit holder should also be provided. Roads and Maritime may not be able to properly identify the holder of the permit, or investigate the complaint without these details. For complaints about medical practitioners, the practitioner’s provider number should also be included if known.
Reports of people committing a parking offence by stopping in a space reserved for people with a disability, without a valid permit displayed, should be reported directly to the relevant enforcement officers. This may be the local council for parking offences in public areas such as streets or council operated car parks. Local council areas can be identified on the Office of Local Government website. For possible parking offences in privately operated car parks or shopping centres, report the issue to the manager.