Body left furious by fees increase seeks judicial review

A battle is brewing between a group of taxi drivers and Transport for London (TfL).

A battle is brewing between a group of taxi drivers and Transport for London (TfL).

The Licensed Private Hire Car Association – which represents drivers in the capital – has made an application for a judicial review, after objecting to what it has described as “an extortionate” increase in licensing fees.

The organisation alleges that the proposals would mean that a driver’s five-year licence would go up by 12,000 per cent.

It has accused officials of appointing too much enforcement officers and believes the costs of paying their wages has necessitated the increase.

LPHCA chairman Steve Wright said: “It feels as though TfL is trying to close most of the business down with these eye-watering rises, so that there are only a few big firms and a few small ones left. We are in the middle of a war.”

Prior to the increase being announced, the fee had been frozen for a period of five years.

Defending its decision, a TfL spokesman said: “There has been a huge growth in the industry. The licence fee changes reflect the costs to TfL of regulation and associated enforcement activity.

“Changes to fees will fund compliance officers who do a crucial job in driving up standards.

“We have listened to the views of stakeholders in the consultation and amended the proposed fees structure … we consider the changes to fees to be proportionate.”