Most states allow people to qualify for handicapped parking if they have a physical walking disability, a visual disability or are not capable of using both arms, according to the Department of Motor Vehicles. Qualifying for handicapped parking depends on the criteria for each individual state.
If a person is unable to walk a certain amount of steps before needing to take a break, she may qualify for a handicapped parking spot. This can vary from 50 steps in some states to 200 steps in others, notes the DMV. It is also possible to qualify if a person has a class three or class four cardiac condition, as set by the American Heart Association.
The Department of Motor Vehicles typically needs a doctor's verification of the medical condition to ensure the person is handicapped, explains WebMD. Other specialists, such as optometrists, physicians assistants or nurse practitioners, can also document the condition. Sicknesses such as lung disease or heart disease can qualify a person for handicapped parking if there is proper documentation.
States also offer temporary placards for temporary disability, notes WebMD. These placards are usually valid for six months or up to the date the doctor notes on the application. Fees also vary depending on the state, and some states may dispense the placard for free.