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Taxi and Private Hire Services – Law Commission

From the Law Commission

Taxi and Private Hire Services

Status: Our consultation closed on 10 September 2012. We published the responses we received and an interim statement in spring 2013. We will publish our report and draft Bill on 23 May 2014. We had intended to publish at the end of April but are postponing publication until after the sensitive period leading up to the local and European elections on 22 May

We are reviewing the existing framework of taxi and private hire vehicle regulation with a view to preparing recommendations for reform.

Taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs) are an important part of local transport. They operate in highly regulated markets where safety and quality control are paramount. Licensing covers key areas such as the quality of services, the fitness of drivers, fare regulation and restrictions on the number of licenses issued.

On 9 April 2013, we published the responses we have received to the consultation accompanied by an interim statement. This interim statement outlines the key decisions we have reached following consultation, but before publishing our full final report (including our analysis of responses) and proposed Law Commission draft Bill.  It is not standard practice for the Law Commission to publish its policy recommendations in advance of the final report.  However many stakeholders expressed concern regarding possible changes to taxi and private hire legislation and we appreciate that waiting until the end of the year for our conclusions to be published is a long time.  Our interim statement is not a further consultation, nor is it the analysis of responses we have undertaken, which will instead be published when the final report is ready for publication alongside the proposed Law Commission draft Bill.

We have received over 3000 responses. We are very grateful for the time and effort that stakeholders have put in to respond to our consultation. The responses are accessible on this project page.  We have divided the responses into separate bundles, each with an index.  We have also produced a general index covering all responses.  There are some discrepancies in the numbering of responses, which are the result of duplicate and confidential responses.  In addition to individual responses, we received submissions in response to surveys and online petitions, which sometimes used identical phrasing to our provisional proposals and questions, but at other times were different.  Many stakeholders did not respond to all questions but only commented on particular provisional proposals.  On other occasions stakeholders provided comments that made it difficult to categorise the response as either an agreement or disagreement.  We have tried our best to interpret and process all the responses as accurately as possible.
The project

The project examines the legal framework relating to taxis and PHVs with a view to making it simpler and more modern.  We published a consultation paper with our provisional proposals for reform on 10 May 2012.  This was followed by a four month consultation period where we invited the public to respond to our proposals.  We plan to publish a final report with our recommendations and draft Bill on 23 May 2014.

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