Paratransit certification

Are you eligible for ADA certification?

To determine if you qualify for Paratransit service, answer these questions:

  • Are you unable, as a result of a physical or mental impairment, to travel on public transit without the assistance of another?
  • Do you need a wheelchair lift or similar device to board the vehicle, but one is not available at the Rapid Transit station where you wish to board?
  • Do you have an impairment-related condition that prevents you from traveling to or from a station or stop on the public transit system?

If you responded "yes" to any of these questions, you may be eligible for RTA's Paratransit service, as outlined by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Service eligibility

As a Paratransit-certified customer, you will be provided "door-to-door" travel from your home to a destination within a five-mile radius.

Service beyond this five-mile radius may be available, if there is a standard RTA route during the desired time and date with stops within 3/4 of a mile from your places of pickup and drop-off.

Obtaining an application

  • Click here
  • Call 216-566-5124, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. An application will be mailed to you. Call if you need assistance completing the application.
  • Go to RTA's Main Office, 1240 West Sixth St. in the Warehouse District. Two Downtown trolley routes provide free service to this location.
  • Applications are also available in accessible formats upon request.

Completing the application

  • The applicant should fill out pages 2-5 completely.
  • A Licensed Medical Health Professional must complete pages 6-7.
  • Mail the application to: 
    RTA-ADA Eligibility 
    1240 West Sixth St. 
    Cleveland, Ohio 44113-1331
  • Fill out all parts of the application. If the application is not completely filled out, it will be returned to you.
  • After your application is received, an RTA employee may call you to clarify certain parts of your application. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated.

Functional testing

When your application is complete, an RTA employee will review it to determine the next step.

  • If it is clear that you qualify for Paratransit service under ADA guidelines, an RTA employee will approve the application and notify you in writing. The letter will include instructions on how to pick up your Paratransit ID card.
  • If it is NOT clear that you qualify for Paratransit service, an RTA employee will call you to schedule a functional test to determine your eligibility for Paratransit service. 

It is estimated that about 40 percent of all Paratransit applicants will be required to take a functional test. If you need to schedule Paratransit service to reach the functional testing location, tell the RTA employee when you are called.

A trained professional conducts each functional test. It starts with a 10-15 minute interview. The entire test should be completed within an hour. The purpose of the test is to determine if you have the physical and cognitive ability to ride fixed-route RTA service.

If you miss your functional test appointment, the application process will not continue. You will have to re-apply.

After the functional test is complete, the testing agency will make one of three possible recommendations to RTA.

  • You qualify for the Fixed-Route Disability Fare Program.
  • You qualify for Travel Training.
  • You will be certified for Paratransit service.

Based on the testing agency's recommendation, RTA will make a determination. You will be notified of your ADA eligibility status within 21 days from the date that RTA received your completed application.

If RTA fails to notify you within 21 days, you will be eligible to ride Paratransit until a decision is made.

Appealing the Decision

If you disagree with RTA's decision, you have 30 days to write a letter notifying RTA that you plan to appeal.