A certificate of disability is a legal document that certifies the nature, type and extent of disability. It is not mandatory but an important document for persons with disabilities as it is required for availing any benefits or facilities meant for persons with disabilities. One of the most common questions that we come across about disability certificates is – what are the differences between a temporary and a permanent disability certificate?
In this article, we will deal with the differences between temporary and permanent disability certificates in India. For any other queries regarding disability certification in India you can go through our previous article – Disability Certificate: All You Need to Know.
Period of Validity
The most basic thing that differentiates a temporary disability certificate from a permanent one is its period of validity.
A permanent disability certificate is provided when the disability is deemed to be permanent. Disabilities caused due to amputation of limbs or any other condition where there is no chance of recovery or possible variation in the degree of disability over a period of time are considered permanent. The certificate provided to a person with a permanent disability holds a lifelong validity if the person is over 18 years of age. The certificate issued in such circumstances needs not to be updated.
On the other hand, a temporary disability certificate is issued to a person whose disability is deemed to be temporary i.e. the degree of disability may change or the person may even recover completely. This includes disabling conditions resulting from an injury, surgery or short-term medical condition. The medical board issuing the certificate has the right to mention the period of validity of the certificate after which the condition needs to be reassessed. However, as a convention, a temporary disability certificate is valid for 5 years after which it needs to be updated.
A disability certificate issued to children below 18 years of age too needs to be updated every five years even if the nature of disability is permanent. However, there’s no necessity for fresh medical examination if the disability is permanent.
One of the important disability benefits in India is the 4% reservation in government jobs. The quota is reserved for persons with benchmark disability i.e. a disability over 40%. A person holding a temporary disability certificate is not eligible for getting a job under this quota.
So, this creates another difference between a temporary disability certificate and a permanent disability certificate. Not all benefits meant for persons with disabilities are granted to a person holding a temporary disability certificate. It is mainly because the disability percentage for persons with temporary disability is not stable. Once it goes below 40%, the person will not fit in the definition of benchmark disability hence making them ineligible for the benefit.
A person holding a temporary disability certificate is eligible for a number of other disability benefits such as railway and airfare concessions, subsidized assistive devices and rebate in income tax.
If a person holding a temporary disability certificate claims a deduction under Section 80U, the validity of the disability certificate starts with the assessment year relevant to the financial year during which the certificate was issued and ends with the assessment year relevant to the expiry of the temporary disability certificate.
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"Disability Certificate in India: Temporary vs. Permanent." (n.d.). Wecapable.com. Retrieved October 28, 2021 from https://wecapable.com/disability-certificate-temporary-vs-permanent/