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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
As of June 12, 2017. Get updated information here.
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Summary: The NYS DMV has issued new emergency regulations in accordance with the new TNC law recently signed by the Governor, effective June 29, 2017. We've been awaiting clarifications. See 3rd post for open issues. Here are some, but not all. Definitions:

TNC: a Transportation Network Company like Uber and Lyft
TNC Driver: any driver approved by a TNC
TNC Rider: a PAX picked up anywhere in NYC-Suburbs or Upstate-NY

The new DMV regulations do not apply to NYC. However, current NYC drivers approved by the NYC TLC, with CDL drivers licenses and taxi license plates will not be allowed to pickup outside of NYC, unless they use a different vehicle. Unclear if there are any plans to "Geo-fence" NYC drivers, blocking them from pickups outside of NYC. Currently, Connecticut drivers are "Geo-Fenced", blocked from pickups anywhere in NY state.

What does a current rideshare driver need to do to be able to pickup in NY State?
  1. Get a NYS drivers license, Class-D, Operator
  2. Open a new account (using a different user name and different email address) with Uber, Lyft, etc. to avoid the normal temporary deactivation while changing cities that can last several weeks.
  3. Pass a new background check (automatic when you open the new account)
Optional, but strongly suggested, if you have a non-commercial, personal auto insurance policy then check with your current carrier about their policies for doing rideshare. You may want to go through independent agents because carriers (like Geico) in other states have been known to immediately drop coverage if they even suspect you are doing ridesharing, even part-time. Driving rideshare without proper insurance coverage (getting rideshare approval from your insurer) is taking a huge risk. There is insurance coverage provided by Uber (terrible) and Lyft (worse) while you are online.

Be Warned: NYS is very strict regarding acceptable cell phone use while driving. Never accept a street-hail, when a random person hops into your car offering cash for transport. They are illegal now and after the new law goes into effect. The cops have been known to do random "stings", catch the unaware or stupid, and issue massive ($1000-$2000) fines.
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What is covered: TNC information for Passengers, TNC Applicants, TNC Drivers, and Local Governments. Because of size restrictions, some information will be included in subsequent posts.
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FAQ for TNC Drivers
How do I become a TNC driver?
Contact one of the New York State approved TNC companies. A list of approved TNCs will be provided soon. (Expect both Uber and Lyft to be listed.)

Is there an age and licensing requirement to be a TNC driver?
Yes, by statute, TNC drivers must be at least 19 years old and hold a valid and current NYS driver's license issued by DMV.

Does my vehicle need to be authorized for TNC use?

Not by DMV. But TNC companies may have requirements on the vehicles they allow.

If I have a car loan, will my vehicle lender allow me to use my personal vehicle to drive for a TNC?
You should read your lending agreement and contact your lender, as any such limitations are a matter of private contract, not the TNC Act or regulations.

Can I use a taxi or livery vehicle to drive for a TNC?
No. The TNC Act prohibits taxis, livery vehicles, limousines or licensed for-hire vehicles from being used as a TNC vehicle.

What are the insurance requirements for a TNC driver?
TNC companies will make sure TNC drivers understand and have the required insurance. If you are interested in being a TNC driver, you should contact a TNC you are interested in working with.

May a driver be authorized by more than one TNC?
That is up to the TNC you want to work for, as there is no legal limit to driving for more than one TNC.

If I am an authorized TNC driver, may I pick up passengers in New York City?
No, not unless you are separately authorized by the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission: www.nyc.gov/taxi.

If I am an authorized TNC driver, may I drop off a TNC passenger in New York City that I picked up outside the City?
Yes.

If I am licensed to operate for hire by the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission, can I work as a TNC driver outside of New York City?
Yes but only if you are authorized by a licensed TNC company, and only if you use a different vehicle than you drive for hire in New York City (taxi and livery vehicles may not be used for TNC operation).
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Continued in next post due to size limitations.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Continued from previous post.

FAQ for TNC Passengers
What is a "TNC"?
TNC stands for "transportation network company", a term defined in a recently enacted part of the State Vehicle & Traffic Law. A TNC is a business, also known as a "rideshare company", licensed by DMV to use a digital network to connect passengers to TNC drivers for prearranged trips. An approved list of TNCs that can operate in New York State will be available soon.

When does TNC operation start in New York State?

The TNC law is effective June 29, 2017, and requires various State agencies (DMV, Department of Financial Services and the Workers' Compensation Board) to establish regulations that set out the details of how TNCs will operate.
  • Department of Motor Vehicle Regulations
  • Department of Financial Services Regulations
  • Workers Compensation Board Regulations
Where can a TNC operate within New York State?
The TNC Act applies across New York State except within New York City, which already allows ride sharing companies to operate under its existing Taxi & Limousine Commission requirements. The TNC Act also gives certain local governments the ability to opt out of the TNC Act. A county may opt out of TNC operation, as can a city having a population over 100,000. DMV maintains a list of jurisdictions that have opted out that will be available soon.

Once I request a TNC ride, how do I know what car to get into?

A TNC app must display a photo of the authorized driver that will pick you up, as well as the make, model, color and license plate number of the vehicle picking you up. TNC vehicles will also bear a prominent emblem, on the passenger side of the front windshield.

Does the law regulate the prices a rider can be charged for a TNC ride?

No. However, the TNC Act requires the fare or estimated fare to be provided to the customer on the TNC app before the TNC ride begins, and establishes the "New York State Transportation Network Company Review Board," which will study and report on a variety of TNC-related matters including "surge pricing."

Are TNC drivers subject to criminal background checks?
Yes, TNC companies are required to perform a robust criminal background check on TNC drivers before allowing them to transport passengers.

Is a TNC required to track the license status of its drivers? If so, how?

Yes. By law, a TNC must enroll its drivers in DMV's License Event Notification System (LENS), which tracks and reports license events like traffic ticket convictions, suspensions, revocations and reinstatements.

What about disability access?

The law authorizing ride share companies establishes the "New York State Transportation Network Company Accessibility Task Force." That group, which shall include representatives of groups who serve persons with disabilities, will analyze and advise on how to maximize effective and integrated transportation services for persons with disabilities in the TNC sector.

What auto liability insurance is required for TNC operation?

While a TNC driver is driving a TNC passenger, the vehicle liability insurance required per occurrence is $1,250,000.

Why did the State pass a law for TNC operation?

Without the TNC law, people wanting a ride were limited to calling a livery operator, or a service regulated by a local taxi and limousine commission. Operating a livery, taxi or limo service requires a class E driver's license, a for-hire vehicle registration with special license plates and for-hire auto insurance. That structure did not allow drivers to use their regular driver licenses (class D) and regular vehicle registrations to be a TNC driver. The new law does.

Why is DMV issuing emergency regulations to implement rideshare services?

An emergency regulation allows for timely guidance to TNC businesses so that TNC services can be offered to the public as quickly as possible. While the emergency regulations are effective immediately, they are subject to public comment and input before they become permanent.

Can a TNC driver text while driving?

No, there are no exceptions to the texting while driving laws for TNC drivers. Please see more information on cell phone use and texting on our website.

How will DMV know that a TNC is following the TNC operating requirements?

DMV reviews all complaints submitted, and conducts periodic audits of TNC companies to ensure compliance with all DMV requirements.

What penalties will a TNC face if it violates the TNC requirements?

DMV is empowered to pursue a TNC for violating the TNC requirements and, depending upon the severity of the violation, impose fines and suspend or even revoke the TNC's license to operate.

How can I file a complaint regarding a TNC trip?

Each TNC is required to establish a method for customers to submit complaints. A list of authorized TNC entities, which includes their website information, including complaint handling procedures will be available soon.

How do I file a complaint about a TNC company?
DMV accepts complaints about companies, a link will be provided soon. Please note that complaints about individual drivers or riders should be directed to the TNC.
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FAQ for TNC Applicants (like Uber, Lyft, etc.)
How can a company become authorized to become a TNC?
Follow the instructions and submit a completed Transportation Network Company License Application Form (TNC-1).

What does it cost a company to become authorized to be a TNC?
There is a $100,000 application fee, $90,000 of which is refundable if a company is not approved, as well as an annual renewal fee of $60,000.

Can a sole proprietor operate a TNC?
Yes, so long as all the TNC requirements detailed on the Transportation Network Company License Application Form (TNC-1) are met.

Does a company need to use a mobile app to be a TNC?
Yes.

Do TNC drivers have to have a valid and current NYS driver license?
Yes.

Is a TNC required to track the license status of its drivers? If so, how?
Yes. By law, a TNC must enroll its drivers in DMV's License Event Notification System (LENS), which tracks license events like traffic ticket convictions, suspensions, revocations and reinstatements.

How does a company open an account with DMV's License Event Notification System (LENS) and enroll its TNC drivers?
The account application form, requirements and instructions are located on our Apply for LENS site page.

What vehicles may be used for TNC operation?
The TNC Act precludes the use of the following as TNC vehicles:
  • a taxicab as defined by NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law 148, NYC Code 19-502, or any other local law.
  • a livery vehicle as defined by NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law 121-e or any local law.
  • a black car, limousine, or luxury limousine, as defined in section NYC Code 19-502 or as defined in any other local law;
  • any motor vehicle weighing more than 6,500 pounds unloaded;
  • any motor vehicle having a seating capacity of more than 7 passengers; and
  • any motor vehicle used in the business of carrying or transporting passengers for hire.
How must a TNC conduct employee background checks?
TNCs should refer to, carefully read, and obey sections 1696 and 1699 in the NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law (scroll down to VAT), as well as the DMV's regulations.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Continued from previous post.

FAQ for TNC Local Governments

Can local governments opt out of the TNC legislation?
Yes. First, it's important to remember that the TNC legislation itself excludes New York City, which means a company cannot operate as a TNC in New York City unless authorized by the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission. Also, the TNC Act authorizes any county, or a city having a population of over 100,000, to prohibit the pick-up of a person by a TNC within the bounds of the jurisdiction. A list of such jurisdictions is maintained by DMV and will be available soon.

Can a county, or city having a population over 100,000 people, that ops out of the TNC legislation prohibit a licensed TNC from dropping off passengers picked up elsewhere?
No. The opt-out authority is limited to prohibiting a TNC from picking up a passenger in the jurisdiction opting out.

How does a local government notify DMV that it opted out of the TNC sector?
By law, any county or city over 100,000 prohibiting TNC pick-ups must notify DMV so that DMV may maintain a public list of such jurisdictions. To notify DMV, the county or city must mail a certified copy of the local law to the DMV at:

Rideshare Unit
6 Empire State Plaza
PO Box 2603
Albany, NY 12220-0603

If a local government opts out, can it establish its own laws to authorize TNC operation?
No. Only a state law may authorize TNC operation. A locality prohibiting TNC pick-ups may only authorize and regulate for-hire operation as has traditionally been done in the context of taxi and limousine operations (e.g., drivers must hold a class E license, vehicles must be registered and plated at DMV for "for-hire" use, and for-hire insurance must be maintained).

Can a local government tax TNC trips?
No. The TNC Act establishes a 4% state assessment on TNC fares, and precludes counties, towns, cities and villages from imposing a separate tax, fee or surcharge on a TNC, TNC driver, TNC vehicle or TNC trip.

Is there some special rule about local governments having oversight of an airport?
Yes, the TNC Act provides as follows: "Nothing in this article shall be construed to limit the ability of a municipality or other governing authority that owns or operates an airport located outside of a city with a population of one million or more from adopting regulations and entering into contracts or other agreements relating to the duties and responsibilities on airport property of a transportation network company, which may include the imposition and payment of reasonable fees, provided that any such contracts, agreements, or regulations shall not impose any license or other operational requirement on a transportation network company driver or transportation network company vehicle that is inconsistent with or additional to the requirements of this article."
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OPEN ISSUES

There are several unanswered questions that require clarification. Please reply if you have any information.
  • For NYS residents, which NYS insurers will write non-commercial, personal policies allowing ridesharing? Warning: your current insurer (like Geico) may cancel your personal policy immediately if they even suspect you're doing rideshare, even part-time.
  • For Out-of-state residents, will there be any problems if you must surrender your current drivers license in order to obtain a NYS drivers license? For example, re-registering your car.
  • For those with multiple Uber accounts, what are the state income tax issues? NYS has higher taxes than surrounding states. I suspect that NYS will want to tax anything on the 1099 from your NYS Uber account, regardless of your permanent residence.
  • For Drivers with Taxi License plates, if Uber continues to provide pings then what are the chances getting caught doing an illegal pickup and what is the fine? If fined, will Uber provide any support (unlikely)?
  • For current NYC Taxi drivers, how soon and how effectively will the new regulations baring them from NYC-Suburbs be enforced?
CLOSED ISSUES
  • Out-of-state residents must obtain a NYS drivers license (Class-D operator) and surrender their current out-of-state license in the process.
  • Insurers care about the location of your permanent residence, not the state that issues your driver's license.
  • Current drivers can open a 2nd account (different username and email) to avoid the normal temporary (several weeks) deactivation while transferring cities.
  • Current drivers with taxi license plates cannot legally pickup in NYC-Suburbs (Westchester, Long Island) unless they use a different car.
 

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so wait... if I drop off a pax in LI, I still cannot pick up unless I swap vehicles?
Those rules apply to non TLC drivers.

I spoke to an Uber rep in Chelsea. He said status quo is still in play for NYC burbs for TLC. So, you will get pings like always. But technically, only if the ride goes back to NYC. No point to point trips.
 

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Ok just for clarification, I live & am licensed in NJ and mostly do XL. If I pick up someone from EWR & drop off in NYS starting tomorrow, can I set my Destination Filter for back to NJ and pick someone up in NYS and bring them back?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ok just for clarification, I live & am licensed in NJ and mostly do XL. If I pick up someone from EWR & drop off in NYS starting tomorrow, can I set my Destination Filter for back to NJ and pick someone up in NYS and bring them back?
No since you do not have a NYS drivers license.
 
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