Property Blog Post
Successful appeal against TFL’s Decision to Revoke Uber Driver’s Private Hire Licence
Tariq Bin Aziz was instructed in an appeal against Transport for London (TFL) to the City of London Magistrates Court in relation to the revocation of his client’s private hire driver’s (PHV Driver) licence.
The appellant was a driver for Uber having a PHV Driving licence from TFL. He was permanently suspended and dismissed by the company in September 2020 following a complaint had been made by a rider to the police alleging that the appellant had inappropriately touched her and asked overly personal questions towards her. Uber notified TFL of the appellant’s dismissal which then initiated TFL to conduct their own review of the appellant’s case. TFL wrote to the appellant twice and provided him an opportunity to comment on his fitness to remain licensed and any further information for them to consider. Finally, TFL revoked the appellant’s licence on public safety and confidence grounds. In addition to the police complaint, there were a further four complaints against the appellant involving inappropriate conversations and dishonesty.
The appellant appealed to the Magistrates Court against this revocation and Tariq Bin Aziz successfully argued that TFL had been wrong to revoke the appellant’s licence. It was submitted that as this is an ‘appeal proper’; this is more extensive than a review, allowing evidence (and potentially new evidence) to be (re-)heard in assessing the merits (as opposed merely to the legality) of the original decision and determining the matter afresh. It was submitted that despite the seriousness of the complaints, the decision makers fettered her discretion in consideration of statutory provisions and their own policy by not considering the alternative – ‘warning’ or ‘suspension’. Among others, it was also submitted that the decision makers decision was not necessary and proportionate to ensure the promotion of the licensing objectives.
After closing speech from both the appellant and the TFL, the Magistrates agreed on Mr Aziz’s submission and allowed the appellant’s appeal.