London taxi drivers set to judicially review TfL decision to not immediately revoke Uber’s licence

Updated: Feb 1, 2020

Taxi drivers in London are set to judicially review the decision made by regulators to not immediately revoke ride-hailing firm Uber’s operator’s licence.

The United Taxi Action Group (UTAG) have instructed solicitors to review why Transport for London (TfL) chose not to exercise its power, under s26(2) of the Private Hire Vehicles (London) Act 1998, to suspend or revoke Uber’s operator’s licence with immediate effect.

Ride-hailing firm Uber was rejected a renewed operator’s licence in November 2019, when TfL found them to be not fit and proper for a second time within a two year period.

Legislation means that Uber have now launched a legal appeal, during which it can continue to operate pending and throughout the appeals process.

In a statement made by legal firm Chiltern Law, working on behalf of UTAG, they wrote: “We are judicially reviewing the decision not to immediately revoke on grounds of irrationality given the systemic and repeated failures of Uber to “get their house in order” and ensure public safety.”

Darren Rodgers, Director and Solicitor at Chiltern Law, added: “We will argue that the decision not to immediately revoke Uber’s licence is irrational for, inter alia, the following reasons:

  • That Uber is not fit and proper to hold a PHV operators’ licence

  • That Uber had repeatedly and seriously breached the terms of the 15 month licence granted following its successful appeal before the Chief Magistrate in June 2018

  • That there was indeed a pattern of regulatory breaches since the “probationary licence”

  • That many of those breaches had placed passenger safety and security at risk

  • That having considered their independent assessments of Uber’s systems, TfL concluded it did not have confidence that Uber had robust systems in place for protecting passenger safety; and

  • By necessary inference that TfL did not have confidence that similar serious breaches would not reoccur in the future

“In simple terms it’s irrationality v proportionality and we await the single judge’s decision as to whether permission is granted to JR this decision.”

Image credit: Ross Campbell

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