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30 Mar 2015

Changes to licence certificates

From 1 June 2015, the Taxi Services Commission(TSC) will no longer include some information currently included on licence certificates.

Financial institutions sometimes notify the TSC of their interest in a taxi or hire car licence. This is where they hold it as security for a loan, such as a mortgage, charge, lien or trust. They have requested that their interest be noted as an 'encumbrance' against the relevant licence.

In the past, the TSC has accepted these requests and included the details on licence certificates. The TSC will no longer accept these requests. 

Licences can still be used as security for a loan, but this will not be recorded by the TSC or printed on licence certificates issued from 1 June 2015.

Given the change in practice by the TSC, financial institutions may also make regular use of the Personal Property Securities Register. The register enables individuals or organisations (such as financial institutions) to record their interest in property.  Members of the public are able to search this register to see if a security interest is listed against personal property (such as a licence). 

A third party wishing to purchase a licence is responsible for confirming if that taxi or hire car licence is being held as security. They should also ensure that the licence is free of any such encumbrance at the time of settlement.

Any licence that have an encumbrance noted on their licence with the TSC before 1 June 2015 will still need to provide evidence from the financial institution releasing the licence prior to the licence being transferred.

Find out more information about transferring a licence.

27 Mar 2015

More Knowledge test sessions now available

Additional Knowledge sessions will be available at our CBD location from 1 April 2015. 

More and more sessions are being added all the time, so check back regularly to see if your preferred time and date are available.

Tullamarine, Ringwood and Frankston tend to fill up quickly, so if you need to sit the Knowledge quickly, remember to check the CBD location.

Check availability now.

26 Mar 2015

Changes to Special Purpose and Restricted Hire vehicle stickers

New licence windscreen stickers (also known as labels) are being issued for Special Purpose and Restricted Hire vehicles. The 2015 the stickers will be florescent green.

The bright new colour will increase visibility of the stickers, particularly at a distance.

Another change this year is the introduction of registration numbers. Previously the stickers contained only a sequence number, which was matched to registration internally at the TSC.

The inclusion of the registration number on the sticker will make it easier for our compliance team to check that the sticker is affixed to the right vehicle. Members of the public will also be able to identify appropriately licensed hire vehicles.

The new labels will be issued to licence holders in the coming weeks where the licence is current without outstanding fees owing and where there is a vehicle attached to the licence.

Find out more information about hire vehicles.

17 Feb 2015

AFR/BRW article incorrect – no deal done

On Saturday 14 February 2015, the Australian Financial Review (AFR) incorrectly reported that Taxi Services Commissioner, Graeme Samuel, had struck a confidential deal with Uber in relation to ridesharing in Victoria. This same incorrect article was run again by the Business Review Weekly on 16 February 2015

Mr Samuel and the Taxi Services Commission would like to set the record straight by saying that no deal has been made in relation to ridesharing in this state.

It has been public knowledge since late 2014 that Uber had agreed to comply with driver accreditation laws following enforcement action by the TSC. Compliance with these laws is an important element in ensuring passenger safety.

The article by journalist Patrick Durkin includes a number of inaccuracies and quotes taken out of context – all of which are now the subject of a complaint lodged by Mr Samuel with the Editor in Chief of the Australian Financial Review. 

Any changes to the regulatory framework are ultimately a matter for government. To assist government in setting policy directions, the TSC has a role in providing advice as does the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources.

It is anticipated that the government will use its Ministerial Forum to engage and consult with the industry and consumer representatives in relation to future policy directions.

13 Feb 2015

TSC matters in court

As the regulator of the taxi and hire car industry, the Taxi Services Commissions (TSC)  places a great importance on ensuring that all drivers are complying with the relevant laws.

While the majority of the industry does the right thing, there are a small percentage that bring the standards down.

Recently the TSC has had a number of successful prosecutions in the courts. These drivers, and others, are regularly held to account for what is simply a disregard for the law.

In court recently:

Operating a vehicle without being authorised by the TSC - a driver entered a plea of guilty to one count of unauthorised operating under the TCMA. The driver was fined $1000 without conviction.

Obtaining Property by Deception – a driver pleaded guilty to fraudulently using CabCharge etickets to the sum of $300. The driver received a 12 month Good Behaviour Undertaking and was ordered to pay $300 to the court fund.

Driving without accreditation – an unaccredited driver was convicted of driving without accreditation and fined $1,800. This matter was bought to the attention of the TSC by a Taxi Booking Service who had detected the driver was unaccredited but still driving.

Operating a vehicle without being authorised by the TSC – a driver was fined $3,000 for operating a hire car vehicle without being authorised by the TSC. This matter was detected by the TSC through one of the many compliance operations that happen regularly throughout the state.