According to the BBC, hundreds of London minicab drivers may be fraudulently working after purchasing a qualification. Drivers must take the required exams to get a license. However, a secret BBC survey has exposed the university, tricking the necessary tests.
Transport for London Licensing agency said they were “intensely worried” regarding this issue.
With the growth of taxi booking companies such as Uber, the volume of licenses for private rental cars in use issued in the capital between 2011 and 2018 increased by 86% from 61,200 to 113,645.
According to the taxi licensing application process, in addition to criminal record checks and medical tests, drivers will need to perform test driving and have to clear English tests at one of eight official TfL test centers.
Evidence for these driving license exams is also accepted by mean of other qualifications, including BTec, which are frequently taken at private schools and centers. The qualification can be used to get a minicab license for many tips throughout the UK.
According to legal experts, minicab drivers may have a reason to “illegally” appeal an expired license
Drivers who have incorrectly licensed of, which were later revoked by London’s regulators.
In November, the BBC published a survey on privately-owned drivers of fraudulently licensed rental cars in London. The inside-out program revealed that hundreds of minicab drivers worked improperly after purchasing the qualifications needed to become a personal rental driver.
Researchers in the program found that they purchased a qualification, including BTecs, for £ 500 from Vista Training Solutions at East London University.
Transport for London (TfL) has conducted an emergency review of claims made to universities offering BTEC qualifications.
Since then, TfL has revoked 143 private rental licenses for BTEC certified drivers through Vista Training Solutions. If the driver qualified through an East London-based university, another 209 applications for private rental licenses were denied.
However, minicab drivers may have reasons to appeal cancelled licenses and applications, according to Stephen McCaffrey, a regulatory attorney specializing in a taxi and private rental licenses, appeals, and defense laws.
Stephen McCaffrey wrote on the Taxi Defense Barrister blog: “The first thing to say is that the final ruling is what is legal and what is not unless there is a judicial review to challenge the decision to issue a general revocation, Limited to cases.
“But it’s a fundamental principle of UK law that everyone hears fairly, which means that each case needs to be decided according to its individual merits. There is a strong debate in favour of the general decision that it is illegal.
For example, only a handful of drivers actually paid for their qualifications, and others may have obtained it legally. In these situations, the TfL decision is incorrect. This is just one example of a related problem to consider. The fact that we did not may indicate that TfL was unable to properly perform its legal and regulatory functions and / or was reluctant.