Providing evidence of your disability
Your evidence of disability documentation is a crucial part of your application to DARE. It is used by DARE to establish whether or not you meet DARE’s evidence of disability criteria and therefore overall DARE eligibility criteria. In addition, it is used by DARE colleges and universities to determine the kinds of supports you might need when you get to college. Your application will not be complete until you provide evidence of your disability by 15 March 2021.
The Evidence of Disability Form 2021 can be downloaded here.
The type(s) of acceptable evidence for each disability type can be viewed in the Guide to Providing Evidence of your Disability and by clicking on any of the disabilities to the right.
It is very important that you provide the correct documentation to complete your DARE application. If you are unsure about the evidence you need to supply, please make contact with a member of the DARE team (click here for contact details).
Send your evidence of disability to:
Getting your Evidence of Disability completed by the appropriate professional
When submitting your evidence of disability documentation, make sure:
- It has been completed and signed by the appropriate professional (a list of the appropriate professionals for each disability type can be viewed by clicking on any of the disabilities to the right).
- The appropriate professional has filled in all parts of the form.
- The writing on the form is easy to read.
- There is a clear diagnosis of your disability. Documentation that only references an initial or probable or previous diagnosis is not sufficient.
- It contains the stamp of the appropriate professional OR is on headed paper OR is accompanied by a business card.
There are a number of ways for you to provide evidence of your disability:
- Some applicants may submit a report that they already have.
- Other applicants may need to get the Evidence of Disability Form 2021 completed by the appropriate professional.
In addition, some evidence may be required to have been completed within a particular timeframe.
For example, if you have ADD/ ADHD, you must provide the Section C Evidence of Disability Form or a report, either of which have been completed by a psychologist/ psychiatrist/ neurologist/ paediatrician, which is stamped and signed by that professional and in which your diagnosis is clearly stated. The report must also have been completed in the last three years, i.e. after 1 February 2018. This is also the case if you are applying under the categories Mental Health Condition or Significant Ongoing Illness.
If you have an existing diagnosis but are having difficulty accessing the appropriate professional to get confirmation of the existing diagnosis or an updated report, you may ask your GP to complete the Section C Evidence of Disability form. However, the following applies:
- The GP must have a clear diagnosis of your disability from one of the DARE appropriate specialists/ consultants listed. A copy of a document in which the diagnosis is confirmed must be included in your application to DARE.
- This document must be signed and dated by the appropriate specialist/ consultant. If a time limit applies, the diagnosis or reconfirmation of diagnosis from the appropriate professional must have been made within that time limit.
- Your GP must have a clear diagnosis of your disability from one of the DARE appropriate specialists/ consultants listed. A copy of a document in which your diagnosis is confirmed must be included in your application when using this GP verification.
- For the purposes of DARE, only a diagnosis made by a specialist/ consultant is acceptable. A diagnosis made by a GP alone will not be acceptable and will lead to you being made ineligible. If you are asking your GP to complete the form, you should print out the following documents for your GP:
Posting your documentation
- Keep photocopies of ALL documents that you are posting.
- Put your name and CAO number on every document you send.
- Get proof of postage each time you are posting documentation.
- You can get a certificate of postage from An Post. For your convenience, there are four certificates of postage slips pre-printed on the back cover of the CAO Handbook.
- Just ask the teller in An Post to stamp one of the certificates when you are sending your documentation.
- For confirmation that the documents you posted arrived safely in the CAO, enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard with your documentation.
- While you may receive confirmation upon receipt of documentation, DARE will not contact you about incomplete or incorrect documentation, so please ensure that you have supplied all documents requested by 15 March 2021. Please contact a DARE advisor if you have any questions in advance of submitting your documentation.