Disabled residents are being warned to avoid websites charging high prices for help filling out blue badge applications.
St Helens Council has stepped in to prevent people ending up out of pocket after one resident was charged £49 in exchange for assistance filling out the forms to see if they were entitled to the parking badge.
It is not necessary to apply for a Blue Badge through this site or any similar, as applications can be made for free directly through your local authority or through the Government’s websiteCouncil leader Barrie Grunewald
The local authority is reminding people that they do not have to visit sites such as bluebadgeonline.org as help is available for free from the council itself.
Council leader Barrie Grunewald said: “It is not necessary to apply for a Blue Badge through this site or any similar, as applications can be made for free directly through your local authority or through the Government’s website.”
Although St Helens Council gives free assistance completing the form blue badge applicants will need to pay £10 to cover the cost of the badge. The payment can be made when the badge is collected.
Anyone applying will also needs to provide documents confirming residency and identity before applications can be processed.
Further advice about scams and how to avoid becoming a victim is available through Citizens’ Advice on 08454 04 05 06. Anyone concerned about issues involving potential scams can report details to www.actionfraud.police.uk
For more information about applying for a blue badge or help filling in the forms, ring St Helens Council on 01744 676789 or visit either www.sthelens.gov.uk/contactus or www.gov.uk/apply-blue-badge