City of Toronto says Uber is operating illegally, charges them with 25 licensing offences

Ian Hardy

December 6, 2012 10:46am

Uber launched limo service earlier this year, then ventured into competing directly against the Toronto-based taxi cab companies. The Uber app is available for iOS and Android and gives users the ability to easily call and pay for limos or taxis via their smartphone, but it seems they might have hit a pothole.

The City of Toronto has handed Uber 25 municipal licensing offences totalling $25,000. According to a report in the Toronto Star, the tickets include operating an unlicensed taxi brokerage and unlicensed limo service business. Uber gives cab drivers or limo owners the option to sign up to potentially start making extra money while being idle. This is not considered a taxi or limo license in the City of Toronto.

Richard Mucha, acting manager of licensing enforcement for Toronto, stated “If you plan on running a limousine service in the City of Toronto, or a taxi cab brokerage, then you require a licence,” says Mucha. “We met with Uber’s CEO Travis Kalanick in the spring of this year and we advised him in no uncertain terms that they were not operating in accordance with the City of Toronto’s licensing bylaw. So our position should come as no surprise to Uber.”

Uber has not commented on the smackdown, plus has never applied to the City for a taxi cab brokerage license, which costs $380. The difference between Uber and rival competitor Hailo is that Hailo has their license to operate.

Source: Toronto Star
Via: TNW

  • Josh L.

    hmm, interesting

  • Graham

    Seems like the $380 license fee would have saved a lot of headache. If money is changing hands, then it’s a business. Don’t fight City Hall!

  • TBB

    Well $25,000 – $380.00 = $24,620 in stupidity for neglect of rules.

    • Tom

      Come on, @tbb and @Graham, there must be more to it then that!

      If it were just a matter of paying the $380 then I’m sure they would have done so. That would probably him forced them to adhere to a bunch of rules designed to protect the incumbents.

      I’m personally a fan of Hailo, not Uber, but I’m sure that it is an enormous challenge for either of them to bring new technology and competition to an industry that wants nothing to change.
      shake-up this industry.

  • Netguru

    “This is not considered a taxi or limo license in the City of Toronto.” Huh? Apparently, it is.

  • joe

    Uber is uber annoying…
    CLEARLY they dispatch taxis, and for some stupid reason they believe they do not and thus not have to pay for a dispatch licence.
    I really hope they get shut down for being stupid and ignorant.
    If the city tells you that you are breaking Toronto rules, then fix it. Dont be a douche and go against it.
    Hailo is a much better service anyways

  • Kelly Spongberg

    Pretty cheap advertising. You couldn’t buy this kind of exposure for $25000, and get nationwide coverage.

  • RKR

    Sounds like Rob Ford runs the company

  • Donald

    Why would you use them anyway? There are so many taxi companies in Toronto. You don’t need a middle man.

    Expecially at night. You don’t even need to call, just hail a cab.

  • TrickyD

    Anybody who wants a unique offering should open a taxi company in Toronto with safe drivers!
    Does this app require the taxi/limo driver to use their phone while driving?