Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing applications defined as Transportation Network Companies (TNC) will now be state regulated similar to limousine and taxicab carriers due to the new Limousine, Taxicab, and Transportation Company Act.
The authority to regulate ride services now comes under Michigan’s Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Corps. (LARA), and the Securing and Commercial Licensing Bureau (CSCL).
“As transportation options continue to increase, we look forward to helping ensure the safety of all Michiganders who look for convenient and affordable ways to get around,” says Julia Dale, CSCL director. “By vetting prospective companies, we’re also helping protect those who want to earn extra income by providing rides.”
The legislation helps ensure public safety by mandating criminal background checks for drivers and inspections by a licensed mechanic for vehicles over five years old, as well as implementing a zero-tolerance policy for drivers who use drugs or alcohol when operating a vehicle.
Registered companies also must adopt non-discrimination policies regarding passengers and potential passengers, and their drivers must comply with the policy. Passengers with special needs must also be accommodated at no additional charge.
The act also mandates that drivers be at least 19 years old, have a valid driver’s license from Michigan or another state, and not have more than four moving violations or one major violation within the last the years. LARA has authority to audit background records of drivers at any time and other types of records, but not more than twice, annually.
Companies must register with LARA by submitting an application along with business entity documents, proof of insurance, and detailed signage or emblem for LARA to approve. The application fee ranges from $25-$100, and an annual registration fee ranges from $100-$30,000. Fees are determined on a per-vehicle basis, with a maximum fee based on 1,000 vehicles.
More information and the application can be viewed here.