Offences relating to hackney carriages and private hire vehicles
Produced in partnership with Freddie Humphreys of Kings Chambers
Offences relating to hackney carriages and private hire vehicles

The following Local Government practice note produced in partnership with Freddie Humphreys of Kings Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Offences relating to hackney carriages and private hire vehicles
  • Hackney carriages and private hire vehicles
  • The licensing of hackney carriages and private vehicles
  • Taxis outside London
  • Taxis inside London
  • Private hire vehicles
  • Offence of driving a hackney carriage without drivers licence
  • Offences of permitting 'plying for hire' without a licence, ‘plying for hire’ without a licence or employing unlicensed drivers
  • Offence of contravention of prohibition of vehicles on hackney carriage stands
  • Offence of private hire vehicle failing to exhibit plate
  • More...

STOP PRESS: The Department for Transport has introduced new statutory standards for taxi and private hire vehicles (PHV) across England and Wales to ensure passengers, and in particular children and vulnerable adults, are protected. This content is being updated to include this development and will return to maintained once complete. For further details of the development, see: LNB News 21/07/2020 75.

Hackney carriages and private hire vehicles

A 'hackney carriage' is a vehicle which is licensed to 'ply for hire', that is to provide a taxi service and wait on taxi ranks for customers. See Practice Note: Taxi licensing.

Anyone who plies for hire without a hackney carriage licence commits an offence contrary to section 45 of the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 (TPCA 1847). It is an offence under section 167 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 (CJPOA 1994), to tout for car hire services.

See Practice Notes: Taxi touting or soliciting for hire and Taxi and private hire vehicles enforcement.

A 'private hire vehicle' is defined at section 80 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 (LG(MP)A 1976) as 'a motor vehicle constructed or adapted to seat fewer than nine passengers, other than a hackney carriage or public service vehicle, or a London cab or tramcar, which is provided for hire for the purpose of carrying passengers'.

A 'private hire vehicle' cannot 'ply for

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