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Blue Badge application process

This article gives guidance on how to apply for a Blue Badge, filling in the form, renewing the badge, and what to do if your application is refused.
4 min read
In this article
How to get a Blue Badge  Filling in the Blue Badge application form What to do if your application is refused
Blue Badge renewal

How to get a Blue Badge 

A Blue Badge allows people with disabilities to park closer to their destination. To find out if you are eligible, see the ‘Blue Badge eligibility’ section on this page. 

You can either apply for your own Blue Badge, or a carer, member of the family or a friend can apply for a Blue Badge for another person.

In England, you can apply:

  • Online: through the gov.uk website’s Blue Badge application form.
  • By post: in most cases your local authority will either send you the application form or provide you with a PDF file, which you can print out, fill in and return by post.

In Wales, you can only apply online through gov.uk.

In Scotland and Northern Ireland, there are different rules. Please visit the following pages to find out more about applying in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Filling in the Blue Badge application form

The application form takes around 45 minutes to complete online. But if you enter your email address you can save your application and return to complete it at a later date if you need to.

Make sure you have the following key documents and information to hand before you start your application:

  • A recent utility bill or other proof of address.
  • A photograph or passport photo signed on the back (the photo used for your Blue Badge will usually need to match passport standards).
  • Your driving licence (if applicable).
  • Your National Insurance number.
  • The details of your doctor’s surgery and the name of your GP (you may also need to provide confirmation that you’re happy for your local council to contact them).
  • Identification – a passport, ID card, or birth or marriage certificate.
  • Proof of any benefits you get.

Use the guidance notes: local councils should provide guidance notes to support your application. Many have PDF files available for download on their website and others incorporate them into the application itself. If you intend to apply by post and you can’t find the supporting information online, ask for the guidance notes when you request your application form.

Explain your situation confidently and honestly: when filling in the form, make sure to explain how difficult the situation really is for you or the person you’re applying for. There is no need to minimise the challenges you face, and this approach will give you a better chance of having your application approved.

If you get stuck, seek support: make sure you check the Blue Badge section of your local council’s website and, if you can’t find the information you need, contact your local council directly for assistance.

How to edit or cancel your application

If you need to make any changes to your online application, or you want to cancel it, you can return to your saved Blue Badge application on the gov.uk website.

After you’ve applied

A Blue Badge application should be processed and a decision made within 12 weeks (but some councils will complete the process sooner). At this point you’ll receive a letter confirming and explaining the decision.

At this stage, the council may ask you to provide extra information, take part in a mobility assessment or meet with someone from the council to discuss your application.

A Blue Badge application should be processed and a decision made within 12 weeks.

If your application is successful, you’ll need to pay. Once payment is made, it usually takes five to 10 working days for your badge to arrive.

What to do if your application is refused

You can dispute the decision. The council will provide you with a ‘decision letter’ detailing why your application was denied. You’ll need to respond, explaining why you think the reasons for denying your application are incorrect.

Sometimes, an application can be denied because you didn’t provide enough detail, or the application didn’t emphasise the severity of the challenges you face – in which case, this is the perfect opportunity to set the record straight.

Complain to your local council if you feel your application has been dismissed unfairly. If you aren’t happy with its response to your complaint, contact the Local Government & Social Care Ombudsman.

Blue Badge renewal

Your Blue Badge will be valid for a maximum of three years (unless you receive the mobility component of Disability Living Allowance at the higher rate, in which case it can be issued to cover a shorter period). You must apply for a renewal before the current badge expires. It is advisable to do this at least 12 weeks before the badge expires to allow time for processing.

The process of renewing a Blue Badge is very similar to the initial application process.

You can renew your Blue Badge online, or print out, fill in and return an application form by post (see the ‘How to get a Blue Badge’ section above for more information).

For a renewal, you’ll need to have the information printed on the front of your current Blue Badge handy, including the long ID number, the expiry date and the name of the local council. This is in addition to the key documents mentioned above.

If your Blue Badge renewal is refused, follow the same process outlined in ‘What to do if your application is refused’ above.

Further reading

The Blue Badge scheme

A Blue Badge allows people with disabilities to park closer to their destination. Read about eligibility and applying.

Last updated: 06 Apr 2020