If you are a taxi driver, proprietor or operator, the removal of your licence can cause significant hardship.
For those facing accusations of failing to comply with local authority regulations, or who have been deemed not to be a fit and proper person to operate a taxi, the consequences are extremely serious, as those relying on their licence risk the loss of their sole income source. Taxi drivers are subject to some of the UK’s most strict licensing requirements, so getting the right legal advice is vitally important. Licensing laws can be particularly complex, however the Criminal Defence Solicitors at Wilford Smith, with years of experience in conducting appeals in relation to the revocation or suspension of taxi licences, provide a specialist and comprehensive service to challenge the removal of your taxi licence. Call our solicitors today to find out how we can help.
Why might my taxi licence be revoked or suspended?
The local authority regulations affecting taxi drivers are extensive, with local enforcement officers monitoring the conduct of drivers. Offences that can lead to the loss of a taxi licence include interfering with a taxi meter, refusal to take a fare, allowing another person to drive a taxi without the owner’s consent, failure on the part of private hire operators to keep records of bookings and failure to notify the transferring of a hackney carriage licence. A licence may also be revoked following a criminal conviction, such as a conviction for dishonesty, violence or indecency, or if you are accused of breaching your licensing conditions. If you become aware of a potential investigation or prosecution being brought against you, you should seek legal advice immediately. The solicitors at Wilford Smith can work on your behalf to explore all options available to you if your taxi licence is at risk, providing guidance throughout any investigation and representing you in court if necessary.
What happens when a local authority seeks to suspend or revoke a taxi licence?
If a local authority judges it necessary to suspend or revoke your taxi licence, it will write to you giving reasons for its decision and inviting you to supply further information. It is at this time that you should instruct a solicitor with expertise in taxi licensing law to give yourself the best opportunity of retaining your licence. You will then have 21 days to respond to the revocation letter and can use this response to address any factual errors in the local authority’s assessment. If there are no sufficient grounds for automatic refusal, the local authority may ask you to provide mitigating information in relation to the alleged offence.
If you do not reply to the letter of notification within 21 days your licence will be revoked immediately without further notice. There will then be a further 21 days in which an appeal against the local authority’s decision can be made to the Magistrates’ Court.
If you do reply to the letter of notification providing additional or mitigating information, the local authority will give consideration to this, and it will then inform you of its decision. If it is still felt necessary to revoke your licence, you will have 21 days from the date of the second decision letter to lodge an appeal at the Magistrates’ Court.
If you decide to appeal the local authority’s decision, your licence will remain valid during the appeal process and you will be able to continue to work during this time. Once the local authority has decided to revoke your licence it cannot reverse its decision, regardless of any mitigating information or factual error. This decision can only be reversed on the direction of the court.
Because of the strict time limits involved in challenging the refusal or revocation of a taxi licence, and to obtain the best chance of successfully challenging or appealing a local authority’s decision, you should look to appoint an experienced solicitor to help you prepare and present the strongest possible case. The solicitors at Wilford Smith, with years of experience in challenging taxi licence revocations, will apply rigorous analysis to the circumstances surrounding any alleged offence to give you the best possible chance of retaining your licence.
The solicitors at Wilford Smith have extensive experience defending all taxi licence holders, including hackney carriage licence holders, private hire driver licence holders, and operator or fleet licence holders. We can represent you in relation to all taxi licensing appeals and disciplinary hearings, as well as challenging driving offences, restrictions and bans. Our solicitors can act on your behalf to lodge an appeal, prepare you for a hearing, obtain evidence to give you the best possible chance of winning your case and represent you in court. Your local authority will instruct solicitors and barristers to represent it, so to ensure you stand the best possible chance of success you should seek expert legal advice as soon as possible.
Why choose Wilford Smith?
We are a high-calibre and determined team that provides expert advice and representation to clients on a wide range of legal issues. Our approach is highly strategic, and we are committed to maintaining our reputation for achieving excellent results for our clients. We have a wealth of experience in handling taxi licence appeals and have the necessary skills to challenge any criminal allegations made regarding your conduct. Our solicitors appear in court regularly and take a ruthless approach to challenging every detail of the case against you. We are experts in dealing with road traffic cases and can provide expert legal advice to help you avoid the loss of your licence.
Contact our Taxi Licence Appeals Solicitors, Sheffield and London
If your taxi licence has been revoked or suspended, contact Wilford Smith for advice. Our solicitors assist clients across England and Wales, and our teams are based in Sheffield and London. Contact us today on 01709 828 044 to find out how we can help.