Who Is Eligible?
There are three categories of people eligible for METROLift service:
- Persons with disabilities who are unable, without the assistance of another person, to board, navigate, ride or disembark from an accessible local bus.
- Persons with disabilities who can use an accessible vehicle but want to travel on a bus or rail route that is inaccessible.
- Persons with disabilities who are prevented from getting to and from the local bus due to their disability. Eligibility is based on a functional limitation preventing the patron from walking or rolling to a bus stop without assistance from others.
Eligibility cannot be granted based solely on the lack of curb cuts or other environmental barriers, distance to the bus stop, or because METROLift is perceived to be safer or more convenient than local bus service.
Healthcare professionals certify the applicant’s disability. METRO makes the final eligibility decision based upon the applicant’s functional abilities to navigate the fixed-route bus and light-rail system in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Eligibility & Recertification Process
You must complete and submit a METROLift application for a certification of eligibility form to become certified to use METROLift services. It is important that the eligibility form is completed properly.
Please complete your personal information on the METROLift eligibility form, including your signature on the line marked “Applicant’s Signature.” Then you must have your doctor, or other licensed or certified healthcare professional, complete and sign the physician section of the METROLift eligibility form.
The doctor, or other licensed or certified healthcare professional, must describe in detail (using lay terminology) why your disability prevents you from boarding, navigating, riding, or disembarking from the local bus, even if the local bus provides accessible features such as a wheelchair lift, ramp, bus stop announcements, and infrastructure improvements at bus stops.
You also must ask the doctor, or other licensed or certified healthcare professional, to submit an additional signature on his or her professional letterhead or prescription form, verifying completion of your METROLift eligibility form. Remember, both the eligibility form (completely filled out) and the doctor’s additional signature must be submitted to METROLift for processing. Failure to do so will delay the processing of your application.
Call the METROLift Customer Service & Eligibility Department at 713-225-0119 (TDD 713-652-8969) between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday - Friday, and ask that a METROLift application for certification of eligibility be mailed to you.
Applications are available on METRO’s website, www.RideMETRO.org, and at the METRO RideStore at 1900 Main at St. Joseph. Download application form (PDF) and download application letter (PDF). Send the completed application to:
P.O. Box 61429
Houston, TX 77208-1429
After the properly completed eligibility form has been received by METROLift, you will receive a letter explaining how to make an appointment for your in-person interview. The in-person interview will help METRO determine which of the METRO services will provide you with the greatest mobility.
Applicants can schedule in-person eligibility interview appointments Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., by calling 713-225-0119 (TDD 713-652-8969). Interview appointments must be scheduled in advance; walk-ins will not be accepted. Applications are considered incomplete if applicants do not call to schedule or fail to keep their in-person eligibility interview appointments and no further processing will be made by METRO.
After the in-person interview has been conducted, a decision regarding eligibility will be furnished in writing within 21 days. If a decision is not made within this time period, the patron has the right to use the service until a decision is made.
Process for Eligibility Appeals
Applicants who are denied METROLift service, or are granted Temporary Eligibility have the right to appeal METRO’s decision. Appeals must be received within 60 days. To appeal the suspension you can request an appeal hearing.
Appeals are conducted by the METROLift Appeals Committee, comprised of an independent group of people with disabilities and advocates for people with disabilities. You have the right to an in-person hearing with the METROLift Appeals Committee; however, you may waive your right to an in-person hearing and have the METROLift Appeals Committee review your case without your presence. You may also participate by telephone; a call in number will be provided if you elect to participate via telephone.
To request an appeal hearing you have several options:
- Call Customer Service and Eligibility Department at 713-225-0119 (TDD 713-652-8969) Monday - Friday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
- Complete and return the Notice of Appeal form included in your letter
- Write your own letter notifying METROLift of your intent to appeal
These are options, and you do not have to file a written appeal. All of these options provide an opportunity to be heard and to present information and arguments to why you believe your Eligibility should be approved or changed. If you decide to request an appeal hearing via mail or if you decide to submit additional documentation as part of your appeal, please send items to the following address:
METROLift Eligibility Appeals
P.O. Box 61429
Houston, TX 77208-1429
or fax 713-739-4971
The decision of the METROLift Appeals Committee is final. Patrons have the right to use the service if the Committee has not made a decision within 30 days of the completion of the appeal process.
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