Blue Badge scheme
Find out how to apply for a Blue Car Badge
The Blue Car Badge helps people with disabilities, access essential community facilities.
Who is eligible for a Blue Badge?
You can check your eligibility for a Blue Badge by using the Blue Badge eligibility checker on GOV.UK.
Please be aware that the eligibility criteria for the award of a Blue Badge has changed as of 30 August 2019. It now allows people with a hidden/unseen disability to be assessed and include those people who:
- cannot undertake a journey without there being a risk of serious harm to their health or safety or that of any other person (such as young children with autism)
- cannot undertake a journey without it causing them very considerable psychological distress
- have very considerable difficulty when walking (both the physical act and experience of walking)
How to apply
You can apply online and are automatically eligible if you can evidence that you are in receipt of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and have been awarded:
- A score of 8 or more for 'moving around' of the mobility section, or Disability Living Allowance (DLA) at the highest rate for mobility
- A score of 10 points exactly for 'Planning and following a journey' of the mobility section
If you do not meet the above criteria, it is not yet possible to complete an application online however you can start your application and an advocate will call you back to follow up your enquiry.
Before you start
You'll need the following to apply for or renew your Blue Badge:
- the details of your current Blue Badge (if you have one)
- a digital or signed photo
- your National Insurance number
- debit or credit card to make your payment (speak to one of our team if you don't have a debit or credit card)
- proof of your qualifying benefit, dated within the last 12 months (if applicable)
- evidence from a medical practitioner supporting your difficulties. PLEASE NOTE: if you do not provide relevant evidence which demonstrates eligibility, your application may be declined. This could include (but is not limited to):
- Letter of diagnosis
- Confirmation of ongoing treatments / clinic attendances, or referral for such
- Evidence of prescribed medication relevant to the applicant's disability/symptoms
- Evidence of specialist consultations, or referral for such
- Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP), which may provide insight into the needs, experiences and coping strategies devised for younger people with complex needs, learning disabilities and/or behavioural difficulties
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP) decision letters
- Social housing letters / assessment reports from the local authority
- Care Plans from social care teams
- The applicant's Patient Summary or Summary Care Records
- Evidence of the progression or advancement of the condition over time
- Evidence of other benefits received by the applicant
- Letters from professionals involved in the care of the applicant
To apply by telephone please contact our Health and wellbeing team.
If you have additional needs which means you are unable to complete this process via the methods stated above please get in touch via telephone or email BCB.Team@sunderland.gov.uk
After you apply
If your application is successful and once we have received your photograph, payment and proof of your qualifying benefit (if required), we will aim to process your application and get your Blue Badge posted to you within 15 working days.
With your Blue Badge you will receive a:
- Blue Badge clock
- Blue Badge booklet, which outlines your rights and responsibilities as a Blue Badge holder.
Reapplying for a Blue Badge
In most cases your Blue Badge is only valid for 3 years from the date of issue.
It is your responsibility to get in touch to reapply for your badge. You will be required to complete a new application.
We do not send renewal reminders and recommend that you contact us six weeks before your current badge expires.
We will not be held liable for any charges incurred relating to an expired or misused badge.
Any person using the Blue Badge after the expiry date will be committing an offence under section 94 Traffic Management Act 2004 and may be liable to prosecution, a fine and withdrawal of the Blue Badge.
If you do not renew your Blue Badge one month after it has expired, it will be de-registered from the scheme. If you still need a Blue Badge, you will need to apply for a new one.
Appeals and Complaints
All decisions are reached following strict guidelines in relation to the provision of the Blue Badge scheme set by the Department for Transport.
If your application is unsuccessful you will be notified during the telephone application.
You are entitled to request a review of your application outcome up to 28 days after the event
If you wish to appeal against the outcome of your assessment, you may do so by clearly stating the reasons why you feel your application should be reconsidered, including any relevant additional information or supporting evidence that would demonstrate you have a permanent and substantial disability which severely impacts upon your ability to mobilise over short distances.
Please also include:
- Your reference number
- Full name
- Date of Birth
Submit your request by post or email to:
- Blue Badge Review Team, Independent Living Centre, Leechmere Industrial Estate, Sunderland, SR2 9TS
- Email: BlueBadgeReview@sunderland.gov.uk
If your appeal is unsuccessful, you may not reapply for a Blue Badge for six months.
Alternatively if you wish to complain about the service you have received you may wish to contact our Complaints and feedback team.