Council rules on who can become a taxi driver

Being your own boss and working flexible hours are just some of the perks of being a cabbie or private hire taxi driver.

But the job isn’t for everyone.

To become a taxi or private hire driver, you need to have held your full UK driving licence for one year to become a driver.

You also need to be over the age of 21 and pass a DBS check.

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As well as this, you’ll need a level 2 introduction to the role of the professional taxi and private hire driver and a medical.

You’ll need to be able to provide evidence that you have a right to work in the UK. And, importantly, you’ll need to obtain a licence from your local council.

Each council has to produce a ‘cohesive policy document’, which includes a convictions policy, in order to determine who can and cannot drive a taxi.

This includes a ‘fit and proper’ test. This should be based on the a balance of probabilities basis and applicants can’t be ‘given the benefit of the doubt’.

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This means, if the panel is only 50/50 as to whether the applicant is ‘fit and proper’, they should not be given a licence.

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The government’s new Statutory Taxi & Private Hire Vehicle Standards guidelines will be discussed at Sefton Council ’s licensing meeting on Monday.

While the rules have been updated, their main aim is the same: to “protect passengers, particularly those most vulnerable” and to ensure “taxi and private hire services used by the public are safe".

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All operators, for example, should be subject to an annual basic DBS check.

There will also be local consultation to determine whether mandatory CCTV in vehicles would have a positive or negative on the safety of passengers.

All drivers will also have to undertake mandatory safeguarding awareness training.