The upper tribunal has ordered that a licence application by a previously disqualified operator is reconsidered by a traffic commissioner (TC) after it was initially refused on the grounds of dishonesty.
Birmingham-based Paul Jarvis, who traded as Crane It, had his licence revoked in 2021 and he received a period of disqualification following a public inquiry (PI).
The following year he made a fresh application for a licence and, responding to the question: ‘Has anybody named in this application ever had a goods or public service vehicle operator’s licence revoked, suspended or curtailed by any EU licensing authority’, he answered: ‘No’.
However, in response to questions that immediately followed, Jarvis explained that he had attended a PI, disclosed the reference number of his previous licence, and also admitted he had been disqualified.
The Office of the Traffic Commissioner (OTC) wrote to the operator seeking further evidence and suggested that he had failed to disclose the revocation.
Jarvis provided further documentary evidence including what he claimed was a typed sheet of paper explaining that he had attended a transport manager’s course, employed someone to keep his record keeping up to date, and had employed a qualified transport manager.
But the OTC refused the application on the grounds that the operator had not disclosed the licence revocation and so Jarvis appealed the decision.
He told the tribunal he had thought the revocation question related to action taken by overseas European authorities, given that the UK had left the EU prior to the date of revocation and that he had not sought to deceive.
In its decision, the appeal tribunal said that Jarvis was technically correct to say he had not had a licence revoked by an EU licensing authority and suggested the OTC’s forms might need updating. It found that Jarvis had answered the question accurately and honestly.
The tribunal also said there were reasons to think the appellant had provided the extra information the OTC claimed not to have received and there was evidence he had sent a package to the TC’s office.
Concluding, it said: “We set aside the decision of the TC because of the material failure to consider the question of dishonest intent. We have decided that remittal is the proper course.”