Peacock Tales • Summer 2016
On June 23, 2016, Pennsylvania adopted an amendment that expands the group of individuals permitted to apply for a disability license plate. Prior to the amendment, only the disabled individual, as defined by the statute, or a person in loco parentis (in place of a parent) of the disabled person could apply for a disability license plate. The amendment allows parents, including adoptive or foster parents of a disabled child or adult child, and the spouse of the disabled individual, to apply for a disability license plate. The statute requires the parent to have “custody, care or control of the child or adult child” in order to be eligible under the statute. The amendment becomes effective sixty days after it was adopted.
The disabled individual must still satisfy the remaining requirements of the statute to qualify for a disability license plate. An eligible applicant is anyone who “is blind; does not have full use of an arm or both arms; cannot walk 200 feet without stopping to rest; cannot walk without the use of, or assistance from, a brace, cane, crutch, another person, prosthetic device, wheelchair or other assistive device; is restricted by lung 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 or the arterial oxygen tension is less than 60 mm/hg on room air at rest; uses portable oxygen; 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 the standards set by the American Heart Association; or is severely limited in his or her ability to walk due to an arthritic, neurological or orthopedic condition.”
(75 Pa. C.S.A. §1338.)
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