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Taxi driver making unfounded legal threats to no shows?

By johnboy - 23 March 2011 14

taxi

Simon Corbell is warning that people are being sent debt collection letters at the instigation of a disgruntled taxi driver for not showing up for taxi bookings.

“It appears that a number of people have received letters claiming that they have booked taxis and then not used their booking,” Mr Corbell said.

“The letter, which purports to be from a debt collection agency, claims that the person who made the booking owes the taxi driver or operator money for a breach of contract.

“The letter states that not paying the debt will affect the person’s credit rating and future employment, and that the person is legally responsible if guests at their house book a taxi and failed to utilise the booking.

“The Road Transport Authority, which regulates taxi services, has advised that there is no legal basis for the claims made in the letter.

“ACT taxi networks say they have no involvement in the letters and do not condone them. It appears they may have been sent by an individual taxi driver. ”

While not using a booking is poor form it can happen for a number of legitimate reasons, not least another taxi driver poaching it.

We’re keen to find out who the taxi driver making these unfounded legal threats is.

Simon advises is you get one of these you should send it to the Office of Regulatory Services, Fair Trading GPO Box 158, Canberra City ACT 2601, and to keep a copy of all letters received and sent.

* Picture of taxi used for illustrative purposes only, it has no known connection to this scam.

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14 Responses to
Taxi driver making unfounded legal threats to no shows?
Skyring 9:14 am 19 Jun 11

Wokie said :

To those of you who complain about taxi no shows here one reason why it didn’t turn up. Seems to happen regularly that we are sent to wrong addresses or non existant addresses!!

If I get sent to 90 Bloggs Street and nobody comes out after a while, I’ll call in a no-show but also check out number 19 in the same street.

And every now and then I’ll get a call at (say) four-thirty in the afternoon, and be told “oh no, we won’t want a cab until tomorrow morning when we have to catch an early flight.”

These things happen, and I accept them.

What’s worse is when passengers make two or more bookings for the same time. Just in case.

Or when they are waiting at a hotel for a cab ordered by the concierge and then jump in the first cab that cruises past. Fair enough if you’ve been waiting twenty minutes and you’ve a flight to catch, but if it’s only a few minutes, then spare a thought for the poor cabbie who has to get there from the rank through traffic and traffic lights.

As for breach of contract letters, what rubbish!

Wokie 11:33 am 18 Apr 11

To those of you who complain about taxi no shows here one reason why it didn’t turn up. Seems to happen regularly that we are sent to wrong addresses or non existant addresses! When base is contacted I’m told “Sorry no call back number”or “sorry that should have been for a pickup in another suburb”!

creative_canberran 7:16 pm 26 Mar 11

Ozhair said :

If a booking is a legally binding contract, using the taxi driver’s logic, does that mean we can take legal action when a taxi doesn’t show up when booked? All the Canberra taxi companies would go bust in no time if that was the case….

It’s an interesting issue. It would depend on three factors:
1. Establishing the relationship between the booking service and driver: employee or agent?
2. Is there a contractual relationship?
3. If a relationship exists, has a breach occurred and what recourse is there?

Frankly I don’t think the Taxi driver has much or a leg to stand on legally.
Even if the taxi driver could establish a contractual relationship, which would be difficult given the issue of consideration, it’s unlikely the law would give him any compensation.

Deref 5:34 pm 26 Mar 11

Ozhair said :

If a booking is a legally binding contract, using the taxi driver’s logic, does that mean we can take legal action when a taxi doesn’t show up when booked? All the Canberra taxi companies would go bust in no time if that was the case….

+1

I have no problem with it as long as it can be shown that the taxi turned up within 5 minutes of the booked time.

Ian 3:44 pm 26 Mar 11

Anyone know how much the purported charge is for a no-show in this scam?

Devil_n_Disquiz 12:25 pm 26 Mar 11

Snarky said :

The Silver Service fleet is the only only one where drivers are compelled to accept a job, and they get a slightly higher fee to do so. But regular jobs are simply spread as offers on teh network. if no driver can accept it, it won’t get done.

Aerial is running the SIlver fleet into the ground too with their stupid rules and regs they impose on the drivers.

Bet folks aren’t aware that Silver Service is no longer a guaranteed cab on time service anymore.

Snarky 12:02 pm 24 Mar 11

Well I feel a degree of sympathy for the driver with his problem, although his “solution” is utterly wrong.

It is a pain when as a driver you accept a booking, give up you spot in the radio or rank queue and waste time turning up to a non-existent fare. Whether its because the booking wasn’t real to start with, or the passenger has been poached by another taxi, you’re now markedly financially worse off than you were before you accepted the booking.

And for the other side of the coin – passengers whose bookings never turn up, thus leaving them in the lurch? Your very legitimate beef is with the booking company Arial who have failed to deliver their side of the deal. Arial is not the taxi owner or driver – they just accept bookings. The booking are put out on the radio system for any driver in area to pick up. If there are no drivers to accept the job, it won’t be picked up – that’s it. The Silver Service fleet is the only only one where drivers are compelled to accept a job, and they get a slightly higher fee to do so. But regular jobs are simply spread as offers on teh network. if no driver can accept it, it won’t get done.

And for those who complain about late turn ups for cabs, this is part of the same situation. Believe it or not, cabbing isn’t so lucrative that drivers sit round and pick and choose between bookings to attend to, then turn up late after peeling a few more grapes and kicking back a little first. They want in and out SAP to get paid and go to te next fare. If your booking turns up late it’s because there were no nearby cabs available to take it, so it gets farmed out to vehicles progressively further away. I once responded to a call for a vehicle in Conder when I was just coming out of Civic because no-one else was around to take the job. Of couse it took me 25 minutes to get there!

KaptnKaos 11:15 am 24 Mar 11

Why warn us??? Why not tell us who the driver is??? Name and shame these twits so people can avoid the cab and run it out of business. I don’t understand why we have to pussyfoot around for scammers, crims and other lowlifes.

The KaosKlan tried booking a taxi once – it did not turn up, Canberra cabs denied booking was made, got abused by the bag on the phone, we made a complaint and was told it was our fault. We now utilise a limo service, more courteous, drivers don’t smell, much cheaper and so much more reliable.

georgesgenitals 9:40 am 24 Mar 11

Ozhair said :

If a booking is a legally binding contract, using the taxi driver’s logic, does that mean we can take legal action when a taxi doesn’t show up when booked? All the Canberra taxi companies would go bust in no time if that was the case….

I don’t book taxis anymore for exactly this reason – they have let me down more times than they have showed up.

beh1972 9:04 am 24 Mar 11

Seems like a scam to me. The investment of time for the process would have to outweigh the returns. A ‘no trip’ is just part of the job, frustrating yes, but deal with it.

When I drove taxis back in the XF-EL days I only ever bothered to charge two fare evaders, and that was only because they really gave me the shites at the time, and I was able to get the police to catch them.

Three hours later you start to regret it as you are still sitting in Belconnen Police Station rechecking the third draft of the statement of facts while there is 300 paying customers waiting at Civic

Ozhair 9:00 am 24 Mar 11

If a booking is a legally binding contract, using the taxi driver’s logic, does that mean we can take legal action when a taxi doesn’t show up when booked? All the Canberra taxi companies would go bust in no time if that was the case….

Special G 8:28 am 24 Mar 11

Anyone in the RA community could send the letter in so we can all have a look. Then whenever that specific taxi turns up ask for another one.

Davo111 10:40 pm 23 Mar 11

Considering there are so few companies offering taxi services, it shouldn’t be hard to find out who is sending out debt collection notices.

Fiona 7:20 pm 23 Mar 11

Once I accidentally booked two taxis using the canbera cabs online form. one of them got a little irritated at that. oops?

The one time I used the online form for Cab express no taxi arrived, and when we called the number to see where it was a bored sounding woman said “oh noone’s accepted that job. you should call canberra cabs”. Fortunately CC sent one straight away and we made out flight…

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