A handler is a person with a disability who relies on a guide, hearing or assistance dog for support. Under the legislation, all handlers may apply for a Handler Identity Card. People in charge of public places and public passenger vehicles may ask to see this card to ensure the dog is certified under the Act.
Eligibility for a Handler Identity Card
You will be eligible to apply for a Handler Identity Card if you:
- reasonably require a guide, hearing or assistance dog to reduce your need for support
- are able to physically control the dog.
If you satisfy the above criteria, you should apply for a card no more than 28 days after an approved trainer or training institution has certified your dog.
The application form must be accompanied by a:
1. Certificate of disability from a medical practitioner including evidence of your disability.
2. Proof of identification such as:
- birth certificate
- current driver's licence
- current 18 plus card
- current Medicare card
- current passport
3. Certified photograph of yourself
4. Photograph of your guide, hearing or assistance dog.
Terms and conditions
- Guide and hearing dog handler cards are valid for 5 years from the date of issue.
- Assistance dog handler cards are valid for 2 years from the date of issue.
- At least 60 days before a handler card expires, a notice will be issued outlining how to apply for a replacement card.
- A card must be returned if it is cancelled or in the event of the death or retirement of the guide, hearing or assistance dog shown on the card.