If you hold a regular SPSV driver licence you are entitled to drive all categories of SPSV – taxi, hackney, and limousine. When driving a taxi, you are entitled to stand or ply for hire only in the county specified on your driver display card.
There are two statutory bodies involved in the SPSV driver licensing process.
An Garda Síochána
As the SPSV driver licensing authority, the national police service of Ireland, is responsible for:
- Vetting applicants to assess their suitability
- Administering applications received
- Where appropriate, granting and renewing SPSV driver licences
The National Transport Authority
As Taxi Regulator, NTA is responsible for:
- Administering the SPSV Driver Entry Test
- Processing SPSV driver licence fees
- Issuing the SPSV driver identity and display cards on receipt of the SPSV Driver Licence from An Garda Síochána
- Maintaining the SPSV driver and vehicle licence register, together with the Driver Check App.
NTA maintains a database of links between each licensed SPSV and its current driver. It is the driver’s legal responsibility to ensure that this information is current at all times by informing NTA whenever they take over the operation of an SPSV.
It is a criminal offence not to have a link notified to NTA when operating.
NTA provides a number of ways to keep this operational data up to date:
- SPSV Online Services
- The SPSV Industry App – can be downloaded free of charge from the iTunes and Android app stores
- The SPSV Information Line
- The SMS service – 51444
If you own and operate only one vehicle, and that vehicle is never operated by anyone else, you need notify NTA only once in relation to that vehicle (so long as you do not permit your driver licence or vehicle licence to expire). If, however, a vehicle is operated by more than one driver, each driver must notify NTA each and every time they commence operating that vehicle.
This database feeds into the NTA public safety app, Driver Check, which allows users to verify the licence and registration status of any SPSV they intend to hire.