BESB: Legal Benefits for Individuals in Connecticut who are Blind


Legal Benefits for Individuals in Connecticut who are Legally Blind 


In accordance with State Statute, residents of the State of Connecticut who are legally blind are eligible for the following benefits: 


a) Property Tax Exemption


A person in Connecticut who is legally blind is generally eligible for an exemption of $3,000 of assessed evaluation on his or her property. If the property is owned jointly with a spouse or is in the name of a spouse living with the person who is legally blind, the exemption would generally also be available (Sec. 12-81 (17) Connecticut General Statutes).


Connecticut General Statutes Section 12-81j provides for a $2,000 exemption on a financial need basis in addition to the $3,000 exemption. However, each town must first adopt the benefit for it to be available in that town.  


For the additional $2,000 exemption, the financial needs test requires that the total of such person’s adjusted gross income as determined for purposes of the Federal Income Tax plus any other income of such person is not more than $14,000 if such person is married or not more than $12,000 if such person is not married.


b) Income Tax Exemption


A person who is legally blind is eligible for an extra standard deduction on his or her Federal Income Tax. The Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind will issue a Certificate of Legal Blindness on request to persons on the Agency Register. This Certificate can be submitted with the income tax forms as necessary proof of deduction. Contact your tax consultant. There is no additional deduction for State Income Tax.

 

c) Identification Card (I.D. Card)


A person who is legally blind is eligible to receive a “Connecticut Identification Card,” similar to a photo operator’s license.  Application should be made through the Department of Motor Vehicles, telephone 860-263-5700.


d) Fishing License


No fee shall be charged for any sport fishing license issued under this chapter to any person who is legally blind. Proof of such blindness shall be furnished; in the case of a veteran, by the United State Veterans Administration and, in the case of any other person, by the State Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind (Section 26-29 of the Connecticut General Statutes). The Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind will issue a Certificate of Legal Blindness on request to persons on the Agency Register. The Certificate should be taken to the Town Clerk who will handle the issuance of a license.


e) Travel


 (1) Local Bus Discount - A person who is legally blind is entitled to travel for half fare on Connecticut Transit buses and other local bus systems under contract to the State. AMTRAK offers a 15% discount from regular train fare.


(2) Metro North Commuter Railroad - An individual with a disability can apply to receive reduced fares on Metro North by calling 718-330-1234.

 


f) Parking Privilege


A person who is legally blind is eligible for a special parking identification card, which permits use of places reserved for accessible parking. Applications are available from the Department of Motor Vehicles. A Certificate of Legal Blindness from the Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind can be used as proof of blindness.


If you apply for the special parking permit and currently hold a valid Connecticut operator’s license, the license must be surrendered to the Department of Motor Vehicles at the following address: DMV, Medical Qualifications Unit, Room 327, 60 State Street, Wethersfield, CT 06109-2510, telephone # 860-263-5700. If you are certified to be a person who is legally blind, you cannot hold an operator’s license.


g) Veteran’s Property Tax Exemption


A veteran who has been determined to have service-related blindness by the U.S. Veterans’ Administration, may receive a property tax exemption of $10,000 for their home, provided that the home is owned by the veteran or the veteran’s spouse.



h) Sales Tax Exemption for Certain Home and Yard Services 


If you 1) receive total disability benefits from Social Security and 2) you have the primary role for taking care of your home and yard, you may be eligible for a sales tax exemption when you purchase certain services such as landscaping, window cleaning, electrical, plumbing, painting and carpentry.


If you meet both of these qualifications, there is a short Connecticut tax form that you can fill out and give to the service company to exempt you from paying the state sales tax. The form is named CERT – 121 and can be found with this link - http://www.ct.gov/drs/lib/drs/forms/2003forms/certificates/cert-121.pdf










Content Last Modified on 7/24/2017 8:22:54 AM