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This entry was published on 2015-10-30
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SECTION 404-A
Registration of motor vehicles of severely disabled persons
Vehicle & Traffic (VAT) CHAPTER 71, TITLE 4, ARTICLE 14
§ 404-a. Registration of motor vehicles of severely disabled persons.
1. Legislative intent. It is the sense of the legislature to facilitate
the usual and special uses of the highways and other motor vehicle
facilities accorded to severely disabled residents of this state. The
commissioner is hereby empowered to issue to such persons, upon their
application, special motor vehicle registrations, one set of vehicle
identification plates for motor vehicles owned by such persons to be
used for the transportation of such severely disabled person and one set
of vehicle identification plates for each motor vehicle owned by such
persons and used by a severely disabled member of the owner's family.

2. Registration of vehicles owned by severely disabled persons. The
commissioner shall assign to such motor vehicles, including any van or
pick-up truck used for transporting persons with disabilities which is
not used for commercial purposes, owned by such persons, a distinctive
number and issue and deliver in such manner as the commissioner may
select to the owner a certification of registration, in such form as the
commissioner shall prescribe and two number plates, called disabled
person plates. Said disabled person plates shall conform to the
requirements of section four hundred one of this chapter, but shall bear
distinctive marks to distinguish them from number plates to be issued to
other persons, qualifying under this chapter. The commissioner, in his
discretion, may issue, for any registration year, only one plate as a
set for a motor vehicle, in which event a set of disabled person plates
for a motor vehicle shall consist of one plate. Where a severely
disabled person owns more than one vehicle and such vehicle or vehicles
is or are used by severely disabled members of the owner's family who
reside with the owner, the commissioner shall issue one set of plates
for each additional vehicle used by such severely disabled person,
provided that such user qualifies as a severely disabled person in the
manner required by this section.

3. Registration of vehicles owned by severely disabled veterans. The
commissioner shall assign to such motor vehicles, including any vans or
pick-up trucks used for transporting handicapped veterans which are not
used for commercial purposes and which are owned by such veterans or a
not-for-profit corporation serving such veterans, a distinctive number
and issue and deliver in such manner as the commissioner may prescribe
to the owner a certification of registration, in such form as the
commissioner shall prescribe and two number plates, called disabled
veteran plates. Said severely disabled veteran plates shall conform to
the requirements of section four hundred one of this chapter, but shall
bear distinctive marks to distinguish them from number plates to be
issued to other persons, qualifying under this chapter. The commissioner
in his discretion, may issue, for any registration year, only one plate
as a set for a motor vehicle, in which event a set of severely disabled
veteran plates for a motor vehicle shall consist of one plate. Where a
severely disabled veteran owns more than one vehicle and such vehicle or
vehicles is or are used by severely disabled members of the owner's
family who reside with the owner, the commissioner shall issue one set
of plates for each additional vehicle used by such severely disabled
veteran, provided that such user qualifies as a severely disabled
veteran in the manner required by this section. For purposes of this
subdivision, the term "severely disabled veteran" shall mean any member
of the armed forces of the United States who served in time of war, as
defined in section eighty-five of the civil service law, and whose
disability qualifies him as a severely disabled person within the
meaning of such term as defined in subdivision four of this section.

4. Issue of plates. The commissioner shall issue sets of plates to
such person in accordance with subdivision two of this section with
proof of such disability of such person or such members of his or her
family certified by a physician, physician assistant or nurse
practitioner, to the extent authorized by law and consistent with
subdivision three of section six thousand nine hundred two of the
education law, or podiatrist pursuant to subdivision four-a of this
section or optometrist pursuant to subdivision four-b of this section,
to the satisfaction of the commissioner who is empowered to carry out
the effects of this section by formulating rules and regulations.

For the purposes of this section, a "severely disabled person" shall
mean any person having any one or more of the following impairments,
disabilities or conditions which are permanent in nature:

(a) Has limited or no use of one or both lower limbs;

(b) Has a neuro-muscular dysfunction which severely limits mobility;

(c) Has a physical or mental impairment or condition which is other
than those specified above, but is of such nature as to impose unusual
hardship in utilization of public transportation facilities and such
condition is certified by a physician, physician assistant or nurse
practitioner, to the extent authorized by law and consistent with
subdivision three of section six thousand nine hundred two of the
education law, duly licensed to practice in this state, or, pursuant to
subdivision four-a of this section, a podiatrist duly licensed to
practice podiatry in this state or, pursuant to subdivision four-b of
this section, an optometrist duly licensed to practice optometry in this
state, as constituting an equal degree of disability (specifying the
particular condition) so as to prevent such person from getting around
without great difficulty in accordance with subdivision two of this
section; or

(d) A blind person.

4-a. Certification of disability by a podiatrist. A podiatrist duly
licensed to practice podiatry in this state may certify only those
conditions which he or she treats in the course of the practice of
podiatry, as defined by section seventy hundred one of the education
law.

4-b. Certification of disability by an optometrist. An optometrist
duly licensed to practice optometry in this state may certify only those
conditions which he or she treats in the course of the practice of
optometry, as defined in section seventy-one hundred one of the
education law.

5. Application for registration. (a) The application for registration
under this section shall be filed with the commissioner of motor
vehicles in such form and detail as the commissioner shall prescribe,
setting forth such information as the commissioner may reasonably
prescribe beyond such information required under section four hundred
one of this chapter.

(b) The commissioner may require the applicant for registration to
furnish such proof of his or her disability or such proof of disability
of such members of his or her family from a physician, physician
assistant or nurse practitioner, to the extent authorized by law and
consistent with subdivision three of section six thousand nine hundred
two of the education law, or podiatrist pursuant to subdivision four-a
of this section or optometrist pursuant to subdivision four-b of this
section, as the commissioner deems necessary either for initial
registration or renewal thereof; provided, however, that a handicapped
or disabled permit issued by a municipality to such applicant pursuant
to section twelve hundred three-a of this chapter shall be deemed
sufficient proof of disability for purposes of this paragraph.

(c) Application under this section shall only apply to a vehicle
subject to registration pursuant to subdivision six of section four
hundred one of this chapter and to a van or pick-up truck as provided in
subdivision two of this section.

6. Fee requirements. As provided in section four hundred one of this
chapter, the registration and disabled person plates shall be
accompanied only by the required fee otherwise required to be paid for
vehicle registration.

7. Refueling notice. Upon the issuance or renewal of a registration
pursuant to this section, the commissioner shall notify the registrant
of the availability of full service motor vehicle refueling at self
service prices as provided for in section three hundred ninety-six-bb of
the general business law.