New Blue Badge rules in England to came into force on 30 August 2019
Last year the government announced its intention to expand the blue badge rules in England to make it easier for people with hidden disabilities such as autism to qualify. However, no date was provided for these new rules coming into force.
Now the government has published regulations confirming that these new rules will start to apply from the 30 August 2019.
As a result of the consultation, automatic entitlement to the Blue Badge will be extended to those in England who score 10 points under the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) mobility test of being “unable to undertake any journey because it would cause overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant”.
Entitlement will also be extended to those who are assessed as having an enduring and substantial difficulty which causes them during a journey to either:
- Be unable to walk.
- Experience very considerable difficulty whilst walking, which may include very considerable psychological distress.
- Be at risk of serious harm when walking; or pose, when walking, a risk of serious harm to any other person.
The new rules also allow local authorities to use a broader range of professionals to assess the nature and effects of an applicant’s disability on their ability to get around.
Derek Sinclair, one of Contact’s Family Finance advisers, said: “We get many calls to our helpline about Blue Badge entitlement and lots of parents have been left frustrated by the absence of any start date for the new rules.
“The current rules make it difficult for many people with conditions such as autism or learning difficulties to qualify, so many families will eagerly await the new rules in August opening up entitlement for many more children and adults with hidden disabilities.”
You can find out more about the different Blue Badge rules in the different nations on the Contact website.