Applying for a New Private Hire Vehicle Licence

If you have not worked in the private hire industry before it is advised that you do not licence a vehicle, or purchase a vehicle to be licensed, until you have been granted a licence to drive private hire vehicles.  Do not purchase a vehicle unless you are certain it meets our vehicle requirements stated below.

Download and complete this Private hire or Taxi vehicle application New and renewal 2024 form.

You will also need to provide copies of the following documents:

  • Vehicle Logbook V5C
  • MOT certificate issued in the last 14 days from an approved garage
  • Certificate of compliance issued in the last 14 days from an approved garage
  • Insurance for private hire and reward. 

 You may also need:

  •  A Basic DBS disclosure if you are not a licensed driver
  • A letter from the owner of the vehicle if it is not yours. 

If a licence is granted you must ensure compliance with our vehicle licence conditions. 

Vehicle requirements

It is your responsibility to check that the vehicle meets our requirements and should read appendix C of our policy for full vehicle specifications.

 New private hire vehicles should be:

  1. Less than 6 years of age;
  2. Have at least 4 passenger seats and 4 Doors;
  3. Have tyres with 3mm of tread depth at the time of test;
  4. Seat no more than 8 passengers;
  5. Meet the Euro 6 Emissions criteria;

We will not licence a vehicle that has been written off by an insurance company will not be licensed, regardless of the reasons.

Private hire vehicles may not have a roof sign, meter or anything that indicates it is a hackney carriage. 


Private hire vehicles must be insured for HIRE and REWARD as a private hire vehicle.  The certificate will not be accepted if it states “public hire” or “Taxi”.

 The insurance certificate should only state the name of the driver (or any other person) who holds a private hire driver licence granted by Hertsmere. 

 A spouse or other family member cannot be named on the insurance as once the vehicle is licensed, only a Hertsmere licensed driver can lawfully drive the vehicle. 

Vehicle testing (MOT and Compliance Certificate

Your vehicle must be assessed by one of our two approved garages. The assessment requires that the vehicle must pass an MOT and an additional assessment of the vehicle’s compliance with the licensing requirements. A list of the approved garages and what is checked on the compliance test can be found in the document below:

Approved garages and compliance test guidelines.

Please note that one of our testing stations MOTORTEK LIMITED (TEL: 020 8953 4443) has temporarily relocated to:

Russell Automotive Centre
Unit 15, Kingsbury Trading Estate
Barningham Way off Church Lane
London, NW9 8AU. 

Alternatively you can still book your test as our other testing station:

JTT AUTOTECH LTD - TEL: 01707 658899

Both tests must have be passed within 14 days of your application. This allows an you a 2 week period in which to book your assessment before making an application. 

 If your vehicle fails either of the tests it will need to be re-tested. It is your responsibility to ensure that your vehicle is suitable and you may wish to have your vehicle undergo an earlier MOT to identify any issues. 

V5C Logbook 

Whilst the V5C does not prove legal ownership is does indicate who is legally entitled to possess the vehicle and as such a licence will normally be granted to the registered keeper of a vehicle. If the vehicle has just been purchased the new keeper supplement (green slip) will be acceptable for an interim period if made out in the name of the applicant and the applicant has possession of the vehicle.  

If the logbook is not in the name of the proposed licence holder the Council may still grant the vehicle licence to them if a letter from the owner/keeper is provided. The letter should be signed and dated by the registered keeper and set out who owns the vehicle, why it is registered in their name and not the applicants, where the vehicle will be kept during the period the vehicle is licensed and that they consent to the vehicle being used as licensed vehicle.

Basic DBS Disclosure 

If you are not a licensed driver you will need to submit a basic criminal record check to us in support of your application. You can obtain this here: Request a basic DBS check - GOV.UK ( 

Interior equipment 

Vehicles must carry the following:

  • Spare tyre (or if so manufactured to have a space saver spare or tyre repair/compression kits);
  • Fire extinguisher
  • First Aid Kit;
  • Replacement bulb kit
  • Warning triangle. 

Wheelchair accessible vehicles 

We encourage vehicles to be wheelchair accessible.  Drivers of WAV’s must undertake the appropriate training to ensure they are trained in the loading, securing of and unloading of the wheelchair. This can be booked through accredited course providers. A pass certificate must be provided to the council before a licence is issued in respect of a WAV. All licensed WAV’s will appear on this register.