The complete guide, which is titled Goods Vehicle Operator Licensing Guide for Operators is available from the gov.uk website here
Want to start your own HGV business or bring logistics needs in house? You’ve already found a flexible and supportive commercial vehicle partner; now find out how to get your HGV Operator’s Licence.
The main purpose of goods vehicle operator licensing is to ensure the safe and proper use of goods vehicles and to protect the environment around operating centres.
You need an Operator’s Licence if you want to use a vehicle over 3.5tonnes (3500kg) plated weight for the purpose of carrying of goods in conjunction with a trade or business.
The licence is required whether or not goods carriage is for hire or reward.
The Operator’s Licence should be applied for in the name of the person, company or partnership that is the “user” of the vehicle.
You are considered the user if:
There are a variety of O licence types that could be suitable to your needs.
There are a few exemptions when it comes to Operator Licensing. These are the most common:
To qualify for an Operator’s Licence, whether it is Standard or Restricted Licence, you must satisfy a traffic commissioner that you:
For a Standard Licence there are three other requirements:
Note: Licence holders are not required to own or hire a vehicle all the time, for example where licences are granted for seasonal work. However in these cases, a formal agreement must be in place to hire or otherwise secure access to a vehicle when one is required. A license cannot be granted when no vehicles are in possession and no formal hire agreement is in place.
Since you cannot keep goods vehicles over 3.5t GVW on a public road you are going to need a safe and secure facility to base your vehicles. This is your Operating Centre and should have sufficient off-street parking for all your vehicles and trailers.
When you apply for a licence you will be asked to list your proposed operating centres and provide information about the vehicles you intend to keep there. If you do not own the operating centre you may be asked to provide evidence that you are entitled to use it. You will also need to satisfy a traffic commissioner that your operating centres are suitable, for example that they will:
If you are applying for a standard national or international licence, you will need to have at least one transport manager who satisfies the requirements of good repute and professional competence. There are two types of transport manager: Internal and External.
Internal Transport Managers are closely connected with the Operator. To qualify as an Internal Transport Manager they must:
You can employ an external Transport Manager to work as a consultant on a contract or part time basis if you do not fulfil the role as of Transport Manager, for example due to a lack of qualifications or are a owner driver or sole trader, or do not currently have in Internal Transport Manger.
The contractor must have effective and continuous management responsibility for the transport activities of the operator and:
If you are interested in becoming a Transport Manager, there are a number of awarding organisations who are able to offer the Transport Manager Certificate of Personal Competence (also known as CPC but not to be confused with Driver CPC!). There are no academic entry requirements for the examination. Neither are there any fixed rules or requirements for study. For more details, follow this link: www.ocr.org.uk
You should apply for your O Licence at least 9 weeks before the date when the licence is needed. This allows time for the Traffic Commissioner to make any enquiries thought to be needed. In straightforward cases a licence should be issued within those 9 weeks.
You could write to the Traffic Area Office giving reasons why you want to operate urgently. The Traffic Commissioner may issue an interim licence, but can only do so if you have applied for a full licence. A fee will be charged for the issue of the interim licence and for each vehicle specified for use. When the fee is paid a vehicle identity disc will be sent to you for display on the windscreen.
Remember: an interim licence does not guarantee that you will get a full licence. Until you get a firm decision on that, you would be unwise to make any long term commitments.
IT IS ILLEGAL TO OPERATE BEFORE AN OPERATOR LICENCE IS ISSUED. MV COMMERCIAL CANNOT HIRE A COMMERCIAL VEHICLE TO YOU UNLESS YOU HAVE AN OPERATORS LICENCE IN YOUR OWN NAME OR YOUR BUSINESS TRADING NAME.
The complete guide, which is titled Goods Vehicle Operator Licensing Guide for Operators is available from the gov.uk website here http://bit.ly/18BVbOe