Uber has got back the rights to operate again in London after it won an appeal to get back its license to operate in the city. The court passed a judgment in favor of the ride-hailing service company after observing the changes brought about within the processes followed in the organization. The court also considered uber’s communication with London’s transport regulator before passing the order.
The latest license consists of 21 conditions. According to information from an industry source, these have been brought before the Magistrate by both Uber and TfL. However, so far, there is no information about when this license would be valid as the judge was looking forward to getting more proof before the court passed on its decision.
So far, Uber and TfL (Transport for London) have not commented on anything about this piece of information.
The judge who passed on the verdict went on to say, “Uber does not have a perfect record, but it has been an improving picture. I am satisfied that they are doing what a reasonable business in their sector could be expected to do, perhaps even more.”
Uber has been involved in a fierce battle with TfL after the latter decided against renewing its license to operate in London back in 2017. During that time, TfL had deemed the ride-hailing service as “not fit and proper to hold a private hire operator license.”
Then sometime during 2018, Uber went on to win a provisional appeal after it received a license valid for about 15 months from a UK court, during which it was required to fulfill all expectations of TfL. However, during November 2019, TfL again denied extending Uber’s license, albeit this time, it had a list of different safety issues.
Despite all this fiasco, Uber has been continuing its operations in London throughout this appeal tenure. However, it was pretty unsure of how its future would shape up in London. Now, with the court providing back its London license, Uber hopes that it won’t have to face any hurdles in London, going further.
In the appeal that it had filed in court, Uber argued that it was very much “fit and fine” of procuring a license, by stating that it has addressed all the concerns related to the safety of passengers as cited by the regulators. Moreover, it went on to say that it has rectified all of its past errors such that the same issues would not repeat.
Uber stated the changes that it had brought about in its methodologies and systems that undertake document verification. Furthermore, it no longer encourages drivers who have not taken a ride for a long time. The ride-hailing service also claimed to have introduced the features of real-time driver ID verification. Moreover, new teams and processes have been brought about for scrutinization. Uber has also launched something called “Programme Zero,” which would ensure no compromise on any of the license conditions.
Another point of its argument was that only 24 drivers out of its total population of 45,000 drivers had breached the system. And finally, Uber stated that it was completely offering its support and aid to the TfL and the police personnel, highlighting that it has no intention of covering up any mistakes or errors. It also said that by getting a license, there would be a lot of effect on people prone to roadside harassment, which includes women, a few minorities, and those who have some form of disability.
However, the court has requested some time to call on how long this license should be valid. Anna McCaffrey, a senior counsel at Taylor Wessing, said that Uber would have to work quite a lot to assure the court and TfL that it has changed for the better, failing which it may lose its license again.