New Schedule 1 - Private hire vehicles etc

Immigration Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:45 am on 17th November 2015.

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Metropolitan Public Carriage Act 1869 (c. 115)

1 The Metropolitan Public Carriage Act 1869 is amended as follows.

2 In section 8(7) (driver’s licence to be in force for three years unless suspended or revoked) for “A” substitute “Subject to section 8A, a”.

3 After section 8 insert—

“8A Drivers’ licences for persons subject to immigration control

(1) Subsection (2) applies if—

(a) a licence under section 8 is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period (“the leave period”),

(b) the person’s leave has not been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision), and

(c) apart from subsection (2), the period for which the licence would have been in force would have ended after the end of the leave period.

(2) Transport for London must grant the licence for a period which ends at or before the end of the leave period.

(3) Subsection (4) applies if—

(a) a licence under section 8 is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period, and

(b) the person’s leave has been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision).

(4) Transport for London must grant the licence for a period that does not exceed six months.

(5) A licence under section 8 ceases to be in force if the person to whom it was granted becomes disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from driving a hackney carriage.

(6) If subsection (5) applies to a licence, the person to whom it was granted must, within the period of 7 days beginning with the day after the day on which the person first became disqualified, return to Transport for London—

(a) the licence,

(b) the person’s copy of the licence (if any), and

(c) the person’s driver’s badge.

(7) A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (6) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction—

(a) to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale, and

(b) in the case of a continuing offence, to a fine not exceeding ten pounds for each day during which an offence continues after conviction.

(8) For the purposes of this section a person is disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from driving a hackney carriage if the person is subject to immigration control and —

(a) the person has not been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom, or

(b) the person’s leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom—

(i) is invalid,

(ii) has ceased to have effect (whether by reason of curtailment, revocation, cancellation, passage of time or otherwise), or

(iii) is subject to a condition preventing the individual from driving a hackney carriage.

(9) Where a person is on immigration bail within the meaning of Part 1 of Schedule 5 to the Immigration Act 2016—

(a) the person is to be treated for the purposes of this section as if the person had been granted leave to enter the United Kingdom, but

(b) any condition as to the person’s work in the United Kingdom to which the person’s immigration bail is subject is to be treated for those purposes as a condition of leave.

(10) For the purposes of this section a person is subject to immigration control if under the Immigration Act 1971 the person requires leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom.”

Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 (c. 57)

4 The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 is amended as follows.

5 (1) Section 51 (licensing of drivers of private hire vehicles) is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection (1)—

(a) in paragraph (a) after “satisfied” insert “—(i)”, and

(b) for the “or” at the end of paragraph (a) substitute “and

(ii) that the applicant is not disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from driving a private hire vehicle; or”.

(3) After subsection (1) insert—

“(1ZA) In determining for the purposes of subsection (1) whether an applicant is disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from driving a private hire vehicle, a district council must have regard to any guidance issued by the Secretary of State.”

6 In section 53(1) (drivers’ licences for hackney carriages and private hire vehicles)—

(a) in paragraph (a) for “Every” substitute “Subject to section 53A, every”, and

(b) in paragraph (b) after “1889,” insert “but subject to section 53A,”.

7 After section 53 insert—

“53A Drivers’ licences for persons subject to immigration control

(1) Subsection (2) applies if—

(a) a licence within section 53(1)(a) or (b) is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period (“the leave period”);

(b) the person’s leave has not been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision); and

(c) apart from subsection (2), the period for which the licence would have been in force would have ended after the end of the leave period.

(2) The district council which grants the licence must specify a period in the licence as the period for which it remains in force; and that period must end at or before the end of the leave period.

(3) Subsection (4) applies if—

(a) a licence within section 53(1)(a) or (b) is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period; and

(b) the person’s leave has been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision).

(4) The district council which grants the licence must specify a period in the licence as the period for which it remains in force; and that period must not exceed six months.

(5) A licence within section 53(1)(a) ceases to be in force if the person to whom it was granted becomes disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from driving a private hire vehicle.

(6) A licence within section 53(1)(b) ceases to be in force if the person to whom it was granted becomes disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from driving a hackney carriage.

(7) If subsection (5) or (6) applies to a licence, the person to whom it was granted must, within the period of 7 days beginning with the day after the day on which the person first became disqualified, return the licence and the person’s driver’s badge to the district council which granted the licence.

(8) A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (7) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction—

(a) to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale; and

(b) in the case of a continuing offence, to a fine not exceeding ten pounds for each day during which an offence continues after conviction.”

8 (1) Section 55 (licensing of operators of private hire vehicles) is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection (1)—

(a) after “satisfied” insert “—(a)”, and

(b) at the end of paragraph (a) insert “; and

(b) if the applicant is an individual, that the applicant is not disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from operating a private hire vehicle.”

(3) After subsection (1) insert—

“(1A) In determining for the purposes of subsection (1) whether an applicant is disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from operating a private hire vehicle, a district council must have regard to any guidance issued by the Secretary of State.”

(4) In subsection (2) for “Every” substitute “Subject to section 55ZA, every”.

9 After section 55 insert—

“55ZA Operators’ licences for persons subject to immigration control

(1) Subsection (2) applies if—

(a) a licence under section 55 is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period (“the leave period”);

(b) the person’s leave has not been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision); and

(c) apart from subsection (2), the period for which the licence would have been in force would have ended after the end of the leave period.

(2) The district council which grants the licence must specify a period in the licence as the period for which it remains in force; and that period must end at or before the end of the leave period.

(3) Subsection (4) applies if—

(a) a licence under section 55 is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period; and

(b) the person’s leave has been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision).

(4) The district council which grants the licence must specify a period in the licence as the period for which it remains in force; and that period must not exceed six months.

(5) A licence under section 55 ceases to be in force if the person to whom it was granted becomes disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from operating a private hire vehicle.

(6) If subsection (5) applies to a licence, the person to whom it was granted must, within the period of 7 days beginning with the day after the day on which the person first became disqualified, return it to the district council which granted the licence.

(7) A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (6) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction—

(a) to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale; and

(b) in the case of a continuing offence, to a fine not exceeding ten pounds for each day during which an offence continues after conviction.”

10 (1) Section 59 (qualification for drivers of hackney carriages) is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection (1)—

(a) in paragraph (a) after “satisfied” insert “—(i)”, and

(b) for the “or” at the end of paragraph (a) substitute “and

(ii) that the applicant is not disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from driving a hackney carriage; or”.

(3) After subsection (1) insert—

“(1ZA) In determining for the purposes of subsection (1) whether an applicant is disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from driving a hackney carriage, a district council must have regard to any guidance issued by the Secretary of State.”

11 In section 61(1) (suspension and revocation of drivers’ licences) before the “or” at the end of paragraph (a) insert—

“(aa) that he has since the grant of the licence been convicted of an immigration offence or required to pay an immigration penalty;”.

12 In section 62(1) (suspension and revocation of operators’ licences) before the “or” at the end of paragraph (c) insert—

“(ca) that the operator has since the grant of the licence been convicted of an immigration offence or required to pay an immigration penalty;”.

13 In section 77 (appeals) after subsection (3) insert—

“(4) On an appeal under this Part of this Act or an appeal under section 302 of the Act of 1936 as applied by this section, the court is not entitled to entertain any question as to whether—

(a) a person should be, or should have been, granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom; or

(b) a person has, after the date of the decision being appealed against, been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom.”

14 After section 79 insert—

“79A Persons disqualified by reason of immigration status

(1) For the purposes of this Part of this Act a person is disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from carrying on a licensable activity if the person is subject to immigration control and —

(a) the person has not been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom; or

(b) the person’s leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom—

(i) is invalid;

(ii) has ceased to have effect (whether by reason of curtailment, revocation, cancellation, passage of time or otherwise); or

(iii) is subject to a condition preventing the individual from carrying on the licensable activity.

(2) Where a person is on immigration bail within the meaning of Part 1 of Schedule 5 to the Immigration Act 2016—

(a) the person is to be treated for the purposes of this Part of this Act as if the person had been granted leave to enter the United Kingdom; but

(b) any condition as to the person’s work in the United Kingdom to which the person’s immigration bail is subject is to be treated for those purposes as a condition of leave.

(3) For the purposes of this section a person is subject to immigration control if under the Immigration Act 1971 the person requires leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom.

(4) For the purposes of this section a person carries on a licensable activity if the person—

(a) drives a private hire vehicle;

(b) operates a private hire vehicle; or

(c) drives a hackney carriage.

79B Immigration offences and immigration penalties

(1) In this Part of this Act “immigration offence” means—

(a) an offence under any of the Immigration Acts;

(b) an offence under section 1 of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981 of attempting to commit an offence within paragraph (a); or

(c) an offence under section 1 of the Criminal Law Act 1977 of conspiracy to commit an offence within paragraph (a).

(2) In this Part of this Act “immigration penalty” means a penalty under—

(a) section 15 of the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 (“the 2006 Act”); or

(b) section 23 of the Immigration Act 2014 (“the 2014 Act”).

(3) For the purposes of this Part of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 15 of the 2006 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty if—

(a) the person is excused payment by virtue of section 15(3) of that Act; or

(b) the penalty is cancelled by virtue of section 16 or 17 of that Act.

(4) For the purposes of this Part of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 15 of the 2006 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty until such time as—

(a) the period for giving a notice of objection under section 16 of that Act has expired and the Secretary of State has considered any notice given within that period; and

(b) if a notice of objection was given within that period, the period for appealing under section 17 of that Act has expired and any appeal brought within that period has been finally determined, abandoned or withdrawn.

(5) For the purposes of this Part of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 23 of the 2014 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty if—

(a) the person is excused payment by virtue of section 24 of that Act; or

(b) the penalty is cancelled by virtue of section 29 or 30 of that Act.

(6) For the purposes of this Part of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 23 of the 2014 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty until such time as—

(a) the period for giving a notice of objection under section 29 of that Act has expired and the Secretary of State has considered any notice given within that period; and

(b) if a notice of objection was given within that period, the period for appealing under section 30 of that Act has expired and any appeal brought within that period has been finally determined, abandoned or withdrawn.”

Private Hire Vehicles (London) Act 1998 (c. 34)

15 The Private Hire Vehicles (London) Act 1998 is amended as follows.

16 In section 1(1) (meaning of “private hire vehicle” etc)—

(a) omit the “and” at the end of paragraph (a), and

(b) at the end of paragraph (b) insert “; and

(c) “operate”, in relation to a private hire vehicle, means to make provision for the invitation or acceptance of, or to accept, private hire bookings in relation to the vehicle.”

17 (1) Section 3 (London operator’s licences) is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection (3) for the “and” at the end of paragraph (a) substitute—

“(aa) if the applicant is an individual, the applicant is not disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from operating a private hire vehicle; and”

(3) After subsection (3) insert—

“(3A) In determining for the purposes of subsection (3) whether an applicant is disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from operating a private hire vehicle, the licensing authority must have regard to any guidance issued by the Secretary of State.”

(4) In subsection (5) for “A” substitute “Subject to section 3A, a”.

18 After section 3 insert—

“3A London PHV operator’s licences for persons subject to immigration control

(1) Subsection (2) applies if—

(a) a London PHV operator’s licence is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period (“the leave period”);

(b) the person’s leave has not been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision); and

(c) apart from subsection (2), the period for which the licence would have been granted would have ended after the end of the leave period.

(2) The licence must be granted for a period which ends at or before the end of the leave period.

(3) Subsection (4) applies if—

(a) a London PHV operator’s licence is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period; and

(b) the person’s leave has been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision).

(4) The licence must be granted for a period which does not exceed six months.

(5) A London PHV operator’s licence ceases to be in force if the person to whom it was granted becomes disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from operating a private hire vehicle.

(6) If subsection (5) applies to a licence, the person to whom it was granted must, within the period of 7 days beginning with the day after the day on which the person first became disqualified, return it the licensing authority.

(7) A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (6) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction—

(a) to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale; and

(b) in the case of a continuing offence, to a fine not exceeding ten pounds for each day during which an offence continues after conviction.”

19 (1) Section 13 (London PHV driver’s licences) is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection (2) for the “and” at the end of paragraph (a) substitute—

“(aa) the applicant is not disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from driving a private hire vehicle; and”

(3) After subsection (2) insert—

“(2A) In determining for the purposes of subsection (2) whether an applicant is disqualified by reason of the applicant’s immigration status from driving a private hire vehicle, the licensing authority must have regard to any guidance issued by the Secretary of State.”

(4) In subsection (5) at the beginning of paragraph (c) insert “subject to section 13A,”.

20 After section 13 insert—

“13A London PHV driver’s licences for persons subject to immigration control

(1) Subsection (2) applies if—

(a) a London PHV driver’s licence is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period (“the leave period”);

(b) the person’s leave has not been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision); and

(c) apart from subsection (2), the period for which the licence would have been granted would have ended after the end of the leave period.

(2) The licence must be granted for a period which ends at or before the end of the leave period.

(3) Subsection (4) applies if—

(a) a London PHV driver’s licence is to be granted to a person who has been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a limited period; and

(b) the person’s leave has been extended by virtue of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (continuation of leave pending variation decision).

(4) The licence must be granted for a period which does not exceed six months.

(5) A London PHV driver’s licence ceases to be in force if the person to whom it was granted becomes disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from driving a private hire vehicle.

(6) If subsection (5) applies to a licence, the person to whom it was granted must, within the period of 7 days beginning with the day after the day on which the person first became disqualified, return the licence and the person’s driver’s badge to the licensing authority.

(7) A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (6) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction—

(a) to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale; and

(b) in the case of a continuing offence, to a fine not exceeding ten pounds for each day during which an offence continues after conviction.”

21 (1) Section 16 (power to suspend or revoke licences) is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection (2) before the “or” at the end of paragraph (a) insert—

“(aa) the licence holder has, since the grant of the licence, been convicted of an immigration offence or required to pay an immigration penalty;”.

(3) In subsection (4) at the end of paragraph (a) insert—

“(aa) the licence holder has, since the grant of the licence, been convicted of an immigration offence or required to pay an immigration penalty;”.

22 In section 25 (appeals) after subsection (7) insert—

“(8) On an appeal under this Act to the magistrates’ court or the Crown Court, the court is not entitled to entertain any question as to whether—

(a) a person should be, or should have been, granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom; or

(b) a person has, after the date of the decision being appealed against, been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom.”

23 After section 35 insert—

“35A Persons disqualified by reason of immigration status

(1) For the purposes of this Act a person is disqualified by reason of the person’s immigration status from carrying on a licensable activity if the person is subject to immigration control and —

(a) the person has not been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom; or

(b) the person’s leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom—

(i) is invalid;

(ii) has ceased to have effect (whether by reason of curtailment, revocation, cancellation, passage of time or otherwise); or

(iii) is subject to a condition preventing the individual from carrying on the licensable activity.

(2) Where a person is on immigration bail within the meaning of Part 1 of Schedule 5 to the Immigration Act 2016—

(a) the person is to be treated for the purposes of this Part as if the person had been granted leave to enter the United Kingdom; but

(b) any condition as to the person’s work in the United Kingdom to which the person’s immigration bail is subject is to be treated for those purposes as a condition of leave.

(3) For the purposes of this section a person is subject to immigration control if under the Immigration Act 1971 the person requires leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom.

(4) For the purposes of this section a person carries on a licensable activity if the person—

(a) operates a private hire vehicle; or

(b) drives a private hire vehicle.

35B Immigration offences and immigration penalties

(1) In this Act “immigration offence” means—

(a) an offence under any of the Immigration Acts;

(b) an offence under section 1 of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981 of attempting to commit an offence within paragraph (a); or

(c) an offence under section 1 of the Criminal Law Act 1977 of conspiracy to commit an offence within paragraph (a).

(2) In this Act “immigration penalty” means a penalty under—

(a) section 15 of the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 (“the 2006 Act”), or

(b) section 23 of the Immigration Act 2014 (“the 2014 Act”).

(3) For the purposes of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 15 of the 2006 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty if—

(a) the person is excused payment by virtue of section 15(3) of that Act; or

(b) the penalty is cancelled by virtue of section 16 or 17 of that Act.

(4) For the purposes of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 15 of the 2006 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty until such time as—

(a) the period for giving a notice of objection under section 16 of that Act has expired and the Secretary of State has considered any notice given within that period; and

(b) if a notice of objection was given within that period, the period for appealing under section 17 of that Act has expired and any appeal brought within that period has been finally determined, abandoned or withdrawn.

(5) For the purposes of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 23 of the 2014 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty if—

(a) the person is excused payment by virtue of section 24 of that Act; or

(b) the penalty is cancelled by virtue of section 29 or 30 of that Act.

(6) For the purposes of this Act a person to whom a penalty notice under section 23 of the 2014 Act has been given is not to be treated as having been required to pay an immigration penalty until such time as—

(a) the period for giving a notice of objection under section 29 of that Act has expired and the Secretary of State has considered any notice given within that period; and

(b) if a notice of objection was given within that period, the period for appealing under section 30 of that Act has expired and any appeal brought within that period has been finally determined, abandoned or withdrawn.”

24 In section 36 (interpretation) at the appropriate place insert—

““operate” has the meaning given in section 1(1);”.”—(James Brokenshire.)

This amendment amends the licensing regimes for taxis and private hire vehicles in England and Wales to prevent illegal working in these sectors. It includes the addition of requirements for licence grant to be conditional on leave and for licence length to be limited by a person’s leave duration.

Brought up, read the First and Second time, and added to the Bill.