Revocation delayed for three months after application refusal

After failing to demonstrate main occupation, M&A Minibus had its revocation delayed, and Speedline Travel its application refused

Though revoking the existing two-vehicle restricted O-Licence held by Middlesbrough-based Mohammed Azam, trading as M&A Minibus, Cars and Taxis, Traffic Commissioner (TC) Tim Blackmore delayed the implementation of the revocation for three months after refusing an application for a new two-vehicle restricted O-Licence by Mr Azam and his wife Parveen, trading as Speedline Travel.

The TC refused the application and revoked the existing O-Licence both on the grounds of failing to meet the main occupation rule.

He delayed the revocation to enable Mr and Mrs Azam to take advice to decide whether to make a further restricted O-Licence application either in the name of a limited company or the partnership, or to apply for a standard O-Licence.

The TC said that after Mr Azam had sought to change his operating centre he was asked for details of his main occupation. Mr Azam stated that he was running a property portfolio.

It became clear that was either the partnership or Azam Property Letting. The TC needed clear evidence of what the partnership was earning as distinct from what the minibus operation was earning.

All he had were the tax returns for both Mr and Mrs Azam.

He had not had any accounts for the minibus operation. He also had accounts for Azam Property Letting. He could not distinguish what the company was doing against what the partnership was doing. All the money seemed to be mixed in together.

It was not clear that the entity seeking the new O-Licence was the correct one.

Drawing investment income was not regarded as a main occupation and, at the moment, the picture was totally unclear.

The finances were extremely complex as the various entities were all doing the same thing. It was necessary to keep totally separate accounts for the main occupation and for the minibus operation.

Perhaps the easiest way forward would be to operate with a standard O-Licence. However, in that case a Transport Manager (TM) would be required.

Mr Azam said that the company only did about three hours a day on school contracts with the minibuses.

If he had a national O-Licence, the cost of employing a TM would be too much. Twenty-five properties were owned, 11 by the company and the others by the partnership. He was not taking any money out of the company at the moment.

Refusing the partnership O-Licence, the TC said that the partnership agreement paperwork stated that the purpose of the partnership was a PSV O-Licence operation.

It did not say that it was managing properties. There was no clear evidence of a main occupation.  There was no clear picture of the partnership earnings.

It was not clear what the breakdown was from the tax returns.

Revoking the existing O-Licence, he said that Mr Azam had not demonstrated what his main occupation was.