A guide to obtaining your TLC License in New York City
TLC Uber guide – a guide to TLC for Uber, Lyft, Taxi, Juno and Gett drivers.
The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission, which was established in 1971, is responsible for regulating and licensing more than 100,000 drivers and 50,000 vehicles in the city. This includes being responsible for regulating the iconic medallion yellow taxicabs, black cars, luxury limousines, community-based liveries, paratransit vehicles, and commuter vans, as well as the drivers of such vehicles.
TLC’s New Single License System for Rideshare Drivers
The TLC now issues a single license for for-hire drivers and taxi drivers (*in the past there were separate licenses for different types of drivers). The new system was designed to make it easier for drivers to work across different platforms including for-hire vehicles, street hail liveries, and taxis. This change does not apply to commuter van drivers or paratransit drivers, who still need specific licenses.
These new licensing requirements affect those who wish to drive for Uber, Juno, Lyft, Gett, NYC’s Medallion Yellow Taxicab, and (green) Boro Taxi, as well as other rideshare programs that operate within New York City.
TLC Required Documents
In order to obtain one’s TLC Driver’s License an individual must follow certain procedures and meet basic requirements, including:
- Be 19 years of age or older
- Have a valid Social Security number
- Have 5 or less points on their DMV dating from their last violation to 15 months back
- Have a valid DMV License
Applying for a TLC License in NYC
The first step in obtaining one’s TLC license is applying for the license and making the required payment. This can be completed online at https://www.nyc.gov/lars. You will need specific information in order to complete the application including:
- Current DMV license
- Valid Social Security number
- Valid email address
- Non-refundable application fee, payable online (currently $252)
Within 90 days of submitting the general application, the TLC license applicant will need to submit required documents. These documents can be submitted by email, fax, or mail (*but not in-person). Information about where to submit can be found at http://www.nyc.gov/html/tlc/html/industry/drivers.shtml. These documents vary depending on one’s circumstances.
Applicants for a TLC license must complete specific requirements, within 90 days of submitting their application, in order to be eligible.
These requirements include:
- Having a medical exam
- Passing a drug test (schedule after submitting TLC application)
- Being fingerprinted and photographed (schedule after submitting TLC application)
- Completing the educational requirements for obtaining the TLC license
- Have completed a six-hour defensive driving course within the last three years
- Watching a sex-trafficking awareness training video
- Completing Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle Training
- Completing a 24 hour course and passing the exam
- Paying any outstanding fines or tickets
TLC Driver Education and Exam
Completing the educational requirements for one’s TLC license involves completing TLC Driver Education and passing the exam with a mark of 70% or higher. In order to register to take the exam an applicant must have already submitted their TLC application. Applicants can retake the exam as many times as necessary within the 90 days in order to pass.
The 80 question exam will cover a variety of topics including:
- Traffic rules
- Driving skills
- TLC regulations
- TLC rules
- Customer service skills.
In order to pass the test an applicant must answer 56 of the 80 multiple test questions correctly.
Driver education is available in a variety of languages at different authorized schools, including English, Spanish, Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, Pushto, American Sign Language, Mandarin, Russian and Bengali, among others.
*Note of caution: If your TLC license is revoked, due to being classified as a Persistent Violator (PV) or as a Critical Driver (CV), there is a three year waiting period in which the driver cannot reapply. In some cases a waiver can be applied for, but the TLC must carefully review a waiver application first, before even considering a review. A waiver does not automatically mean that a TLC license will be reinstated. As such, is is highly recommended that TLC-licensed drivers follow all rules and regulations, in order to avoid license revocation.