169.345 Parking privilege for physically disabled.
Subdivision 1. Scope of privilege. (a) A vehicle that prominently displays the certificate authorized by this section or that bears license plates issued under section 168.021, may be parked by or solely for the benefit of a physically disabled person:
(1) in a designated parking space for disabled persons, as provided in section 169.346;
(2) in a metered parking space without obligation to pay the meter fee and without time restrictions unless time restrictions are separately posted on official signs; and
(3) without time restrictions in a nonmetered space where parking is otherwise allowed for passenger vehicles but restricted to a maximum period of time and which does not specifically prohibit the exercise of disabled parking privileges in that space.
A person may park a vehicle for a physically disabled person in a parking space described in clause (1) or (2) only when actually transporting the physically disabled person for the sole benefit of that person and when the parking space is within a reasonable distance from the drop-off point.
(b) For purposes of this subdivision, a certificate is prominently displayed if it is displayed so that it may be viewed from the front and rear of the vehicle by hanging it from the rearview mirror attached to the front windshield of the vehicle. If there is no rearview mirror or if the certificate holder's disability precludes placing the certificate on the mirror, the placard must be displayed on the dashboard on the driver's side of the vehicle. No part of the certificate may be obscured.
(c) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), clauses (1), (2), and (3), this section does not permit parking in areas prohibited by sections 169.32 and 169.34, in designated no parking spaces, or in parking spaces reserved for specified purposes or vehicles. A local governmental unit may, by ordinance, prohibit parking on any street or highway to create a fire lane, or to accommodate heavy traffic during morning and afternoon rush hours and these ordinances also apply to physically disabled persons.
Subd. 2. Definitions. For the purpose of this section, "physically disabled person" means a person who:
(1) because of disability cannot walk without significant risk of falling;
(2) because of disability cannot walk 200 feet without stopping to rest;
(3) because of disability cannot walk without the aid of another person, a walker, a cane, crutches, braces, a prosthetic device, or a wheelchair;
(4) is restricted by a respiratory disease to such an extent that the person's forced (respiratory) expiratory volume for one second, when measured by spirometry, is less than one liter;
(5) has an arterial oxygen tension (PAO2) of less than 60 mm/Hg on room air at rest;
(6) uses portable oxygen;
(7) has a cardiac condition to the extent that the person's functional limitations are classified in severity as class III or class IV according to standards set by the American Heart Association;
(8) has lost an arm or a leg and does not have or cannot use an artificial limb; or
(9) has a disability that would be aggravated by walking 200 feet under normal environmental conditions to an extent that would be life threatening.
Subd. 2a. Physician's or chiropractor's statement. (a) The commissioner shall develop a form for the physician's or chiropractor's statement. The statement must be signed by a licensed physician or chiropractor who certifies that the applicant is a physically disabled person as defined in subdivision 2. The commissioner may request additional information from the physician or chiropractor if needed to verify the applicant's eligibility. The statement that the applicant is a physically disabled person must specify whether the disability is permanent or temporary, and if temporary, the opinion of the physician or chiropractor as to the duration of the disability. A physician or chiropractor who fraudulently certifies to the commissioner that a person is a physically disabled person as defined in subdivision 2, and that the person is entitled to the license plates authorized by section 168.021 or to the certificate authorized by this section, is guilty of a misdemeanor and is subject to a fine of $500.
(b) The commissioner may waive the requirement of providing a statement of a licensed physician or chiropractor, if the applicant has previously filed with the commissioner a statement of a licensed physician or chiropractor certifying that the applicant has a permanent physical disability.
Subd. 3. Identifying certificate. (a) The division of driver and vehicle services in the department of public safety shall issue (1) immediately, a temporary permit valid for 30 days, if the person is eligible for the certificate issued under this paragraph, and (2) a special identifying certificate for a motor vehicle when a physically disabled applicant submits proof of physical disability under subdivision 2a. The commissioner shall design separate certificates for persons with permanent and temporary disabilities that can be readily distinguished from each other from outside a vehicle at a distance of 25 feet. The certificate is valid for six years, if the disability is specified in the physician's or chiropractor's statement as permanent, and is valid for a period not to exceed six months, if the disability is specified as temporary.
(b) When the commissioner is satisfied that a motor vehicle is used primarily for the purpose of transporting physically disabled persons, the division may issue without charge (1) immediately, a temporary permit valid for 30 days, if the operator is eligible for the certificate issued under this paragraph, and (2) a special identifying certificate for the vehicle. The operator of a vehicle displaying the certificate or temporary permit has the parking privileges provided in subdivision 1 only while the vehicle is actually in use for transporting physically disabled persons. The certificate issued to a person transporting physically disabled persons must be renewed every third year. On application and renewal, the person must present evidence that the vehicle continues to be used for transporting physically disabled persons. When the commissioner of public safety issues commercial certificates to an organization, the commissioner shall require documentation satisfactory to the commissioner from each organization that procedures and controls have been implemented to ensure that the parking privileges available under this section will not be abused.
(c) A certificate must be made of plastic or similar durable material and must bear its expiration date prominently on both sides. A certificate issued prior to January 1, 1994, must bear its expiration date prominently on its face and will remain valid until that date or December 31, 2000, whichever shall come first. A certificate issued to a temporarily disabled person must display the date of expiration of the duration of the disability, as determined under paragraph (a). Each applicant must be provided a summary of the parking privileges and restrictions that apply to each vehicle for which the certificate is used. The commissioner may charge a fee of $5 for issuance or renewal of a certificate or temporary permit, and a fee of $5 for a duplicate to replace a lost, stolen, or damaged certificate or temporary permit. The commissioner shall not charge a fee for issuing a certificate to a person who has paid a fee for issuance of a temporary permit. The commissioner shall not issue more than three replacement certificates within any six-year period without the approval of the council on disability.
Subd. 4. Unauthorized use; revocation; misdemeanor. If a peace officer, authorized parking enforcement employee or agent of a statutory or home rule charter city or town, or authorized agent of the citizen enforcement program finds that the certificate or temporary permit is being improperly used, the officer, municipal employee, or agent shall report the violation to the division of driver and vehicle services in the department of public safety and the commissioner of public safety may revoke the certificate or temporary permit. A person who uses the certificate or temporary permit in violation of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and is subject to a fine of $500.
Subd. 5. Repealed, 1967 c 389 s 2
HIST: 1965 c 844 s 1-5; 1967 c 389 s 1; 1969 c 1129 art 1 s 15; Ex1971 c 27 s 10; 1977 c 22 s 1,2; 1979 c 31 s 1; 1979 c 277 s 4; 1985 c 248 s 70; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 355 s 7; 1988 c 642 s 7,8; 1989 c 209 art 1 s 17; 1989 c 234 s 3-5; 1989 c 301 s 3; 1990 c 497 s 11; 1991 c 301 s 4; 1993 c 98 s 4,5; 1994 c 536 s 20,21; 1995 c 85 s 2-4; 1999 c 238 art 2 s 16-18
Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes