COVID-19: Updates on Department of Transport services

PTD FAQs

The on-demand transport reform is bringing important changes for drivers. This page includes answers to frequently asked questions about the changes.

  What is changing?

In July 2020, Passenger Transport Driver (PTD) authorisations will be introduced Ė these replace F and T driverís licence extensions that permit someone to drive for hire or reward. 

A PTD authorisation is an annual authorisation that must be renewed every year. An F/T extension is currently issued with no expiry date and remains valid, provided that the holder continues to meet the fit and proper requirements.

A PTD authorisation is not specific to a type of passenger transport, unlike F (charter and bus) or T (taxi) extensions. It enables you to drive any passenger transport vehicle relevant to the licence class on your driverís licence.

  Who is eligible for a PTD authorisation?

You can apply for a PTD authorisation if you: 

  • are aged 20 years old or more; and 
  • hold a current and valid WA drivers licence; and
  • have held a driverís licence, or the equivalent driving authorisation from another jurisdiction for a period of three (3) years; and
  • have not been disqualified from holding or obtaining a PTD authorisation.

  When do I need a PTD authorisation?

If you do not hold an F or T extension already, you must apply for a PTD authorisation before you start driving a passenger transport vehicle for hire or reward. 

There will be a 12 month transition period when PTD authorisations are introduced in July 2020. If you currently hold an F or T extension, you must apply for and have a PTD authorisation granted by the end of this period.

If you donít do this, you will no longer be authorised to drive a passenger transport vehicle Ė apply early to ensure you are authorised. 

During the transition period, the authorisation to drive a passenger transport vehicle for hire or reward comprises:

  • F extension;
  • T extension; and
  • PTD authorisation.

  Iím a teacher and drive students occasionally. Do I need a PTD authorisation?

School travel is generally considered for hire or reward as the transport is often part of the schoolís offering (i.e. while not paid directly by school students, it is part of the school fees or other remuneration the school gets for its services).

People are only considered to be driving for hire or reward if the driving is more than an incidental part of their general employment duties. It is not related to how frequently the driving might occur.

As an employee of the Department of Education or a school, you will need to discuss with management or the relevant section as to whether your specific job as a teacher, education support or general staff member has driving for school purposes as a main part of its duties, If your main role is to teach, it is likely that a PTD authorisation will not be required.

Read Am I driving for hire or reward for further information.

  Iím driving passengers as a volunteer. Do I need a PTD authorisation?

In general, you are considered to be driving passengers for hire or reward if:

  • the amount you receive or intend to receive is higher than 68 cents per kilometre; or
  • the transport is provided for free but with a view to gaining or maintaining customers or other commercial advantage.

This means that:

  • while you may not be paid directly, if you receive other remuneration such as fuel reimbursement, paid meals or gifts and the value of this is higher than 68 cents per kilometre driven, the driving counts as hire or reward; and
  • even if the service is provided for free, it counts as hire or reward if providing the free service influences people to choose you over a competitor.

You are not considered to be driving for hire or reward if you are driving passengers as part of your role as a volunteer, but the driving is an incidental part of your volunteer work. If you are regularly transporting passengers as part of your volunteer duties, then you are likely driving for hire or reward and will need a PTD authorisation.

Read Am I driving for hire or reward for further information.

  I transport prisoners as part of my job. Do I need a PTD authorisation?

If you are employed by the Department of Justice (DoJ) and transfer prisoners as part of your role, you are carrying out DoJís statutory functions. The transport is not considered for hire or reward and a PTD authorisation is not needed.

If you are employed under a contract arrangement to transport prisoners, this transport is considered for hire or reward as the contracted organisation is receiving ďrewardĒ from DoJ for delivering the service. Contracted drivers will require a PTD authorisation. 

Read Am I driving for hire or reward for further information.

  How much does a PTD authorisation cost?

There are two costs associated with a PTD authorisation:

  • an initial $28 application fee, when a driver first applies for a PTD authorisation; and
  • an annual $88 authorisation fee. 

The $28 application fee is only payable when the driver first applies for PTD authorisation; if they renew their authorisation before it expires they will only need to pay the $88 annual authorisation fee in subsequent years. 

If a driver does not renew their PTD authorisation by the renewal date and allows it to lapse, they will need to pay the application and authorisation fees to apply for a new PTD authorisation. 

The annual PTD authorisation fee will recover the cost of the ongoing monitoring of driversí suitability to drive a vehicle for hire or reward Ė previously this cost has been covered by the taxpayer. 

DoT share data with the WA Police and Department of Justice to monitor convictions and charges against F and T extension holders. Until now, DoT has not sought to recover this cost. With the introduction of PTD authorisations, the cost of maintaining public safety will be met by the passenger transport industry.

PTD authorisation fee waiver

If you are an existing F or T extension holder and apply for a PTD authorisation in the first four months, you will be exempt from paying the first yearís authorisation fee (the $28 application fee will still apply). Applications received after this date will need to pay the full authorisation and application fees.

  Can I keep using my F/T extension?

From July, there will be a 12-month transition period for existing F and T extension holders to apply for a PTD authorisation. After this point, if you do not have a PTD authorisation, you will no longer be able to drive for hire or reward.

If you are an existing F or T extension holder and apply for a PTD authorisation in the first four months (i.e. from July to October 2020), your authorisation fee ($88) will be waived for the first 12 months.

  Why won't my F or T extension be automatically transitioned?

New rules for the passenger transport industry that will come into effect in mid-2020 will set criteria for a person to be granted a PTD authorisation that are different to that of an F/T extension. This includes a number of criminal offences that will automatically disqualify a person from being able to hold a PTD, either permanently or for periods of up to one, five or ten years. 

All current F/T extension holders will therefore need to be re-assessed against these driver disqualification offences, as part of a new application for PTD authorisation.

  What do I need to have to apply for a PTD authorisation?

Before you apply for a PTD authorisation you should: 

  • Check that you meet the eligibility criteria for applying for a PTD authorisation.  
  • Get a DoTDirect account if you donít already have one.
  • Apply for a National Police Clearance (itís quicker to do this online!) Ė it will need to be less than 3 months old when you apply for a PTD authorisation. 
  • If youíve received a medical renewal letter from DoT recently, youíll need to complete this to ensure your medical record is up-to-date.  

For more details, visit How to apply for a PTD authorisation.

External Link Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission: National Police Checking Service accredited bodies

  If I am an existing F/T holder do I have to do another medical or supply a new National Police Certificate (NPC)?

Everyone must supply a National Police Certificate (NPC) as part of their PTD application in DoTDirect Ė you will not be able to complete your application if you do not supply an NPC. 

When submit your application for a PTD authorisation, your NPC must be less than three months old (from date of issue). 

If youíve submitted an NPC to DoT recently for another purpose Ė such as an application for an ODBS authorisation Ė you may resubmit the same NPC as part of your application for PTD authorisation, providing itís less than three months old when you apply. 

If youíve received a medical renewal letter from DoT recently, youíll need to complete this to ensure your medical record is up-to-date.  

If you havenít recently received a medical renewal letter from DoT, your medical assessment should still be valid and you will not be required to submit a new medical assessment when you apply for a PTD authorisation. 

  How often do I need to supply a medical and NPC to DoT?

To maintain a PTD authorisation, you will need to supply DoT with a medical assessment and NPC every five years, unless DoT ask you to provide these more often.

You will be able to see the next due dates for your medical and NPC on your PTD authorisation document and in DoTDirect when you view your PTD authorisation details.

  Where should I get my NPC from?

Online providers are quicker than applying in-person, and it costs approximately $45 to apply for an NPC online.

The Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission has a list of all accredited organisations that can supply a NPC for you. Check out your chosen providerís website to make sure they provide services to the general public.

The NPC lists an individual's disclosable court outcomes and pending charges sourced from the databases of all Australian police jurisdictions. DoT needs this information to be able to assess whether you are a fit and proper person to drive passengers Ė this is one way DoT is working to ensure the safety of the passenger transport industry.

The WA Police have an informative FAQs about National Police Certificates.

External Link WA Police: National Police Certificates FAQs
External Link Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission: National Police Checking Service accredited bodies

  What kind of offences will disqualify me from driving for hire or reward?

Disqualification offences are certain safety and criminal offences that are more serious in nature and may disqualify a person from holding a PTD authorisation. Visit Driver disqualification offences for a full list of offences and disqualification periods. 

  I have committed a disqualification offence Ė what does this mean for me?

If you have been charged or convicted of a disqualification offence, this will impact on how the Department of Transport assess your application for a PTD authorisation. 

The impact on your application for PTD authorisation will be determined by:

  • the type of disqualification offence; and
  • whether you have been charged or convicted.

If you have been charged with a disqualification offence, your application for PTD authorisation may be refused. Your application may also be refused if you are assessed as not a fit and proper person.

If you have been convicted of a disqualification offence, your application for PTD authorisation must be refused unless:

  • the conviction has been quashed or set aside; and/or
  • the disqualification period for the offence has passed since the conviction.

  What is a spent conviction?

Having a conviction declared spent means you can limit the disclosure of a conviction. For example, a conviction which has been spent is not listed on a National Police Certificate. 

If a conviction is considered spent, you are not obliged to disclose any details of that conviction and any questions concerning your criminal history can only refer to any convictions which are not spent.

  How can I get my conviction spent?

When you apply for a WA National Police Certificate, it also includes an application to spend eligible convictions. If you are applying for an NPC, there is no need to apply separately for a spent conviction.

The WA Police have the most up to date information on ways to apply for a spent conviction. Please visit the WA Police Spent Conviction FAQs for further information.

External Link WA Police: Spent conviction FAQs

  Iíve applied for my PTD authorisation online. How long will it take until I am authorised?

When you submit your application for a PTD authorisation it must be assessed by DoT Ė your PTD authorisation will not be immediately granted. 

The time it takes DoT to assess an application varies, and is dependent on the individual circumstances as well as how many PTD authorisation applications are currently waiting to be assessed. If an application does not have all the required information, this will cause delays while the further records are obtained and then assessed.

DoT will prioritise the assessment of applications from new customers who donít already hold an F or T extension; this will enable these customers to start driving for hire or reward as soon as DoT grants their PTD authorisation.  

Existing F and T extension holders are still authorised to drive for hire or reward until 30 June 2021, hence any delays in the processing of applications for PTD authorisations will not limit their ability to complete their current driving duties. They will also receive the PTD authorisation fee waiver ($88) providing they submit their application for PTD authorisation by 31 October 2020. 

You will soon be able check the current processing time for a PTD authorisation application on the DoT website Ė this functionality will be available in late July 2020. This timeframe will be updated each week to reflect the current demand for PTD authorisations. 

  How will I know if my application for a PTD authorisation has been assessed?

You will receive an email from DoT to notify you of the assessment outcome of your PTD authorisation application. 
If your application is successful, you will be required to pay a 12-month authorisation fee ($88). If you are an existing F or T extension holder and apply for a PTD authorisation before 31 October 2020, you will not be required to pay this authorisation fee. 

When you sign into your DoTDirect account, you will also be able to see the stage that your application is at by clicking on ĎPassenger Transport Driversí in the top navigation bar. 

  Will my PTD authorisation replace the F/T letter on my Driverís Licence card?

No, your PTD authorisation will be emailed to you as a separate PDF document Ė you can print this out if you wish. 

You will not need to get a new Driverís Licence card, even if you held an F/T extension (and it was noted on your Driverís Licence card) prior to the introduction of PTD authorisations.

 

  How will my booking service know that I have a PTD authorisation if itís not written on my Driverís Licence card?

You may need to supply proof of your PTD authorisation to your on-demand booking service or employer. 

Authorised on-demand booking services can access DoTís Driver and Vehicle Industry Dashboard (DVID) to check if the drivers and vehicles that they dispatch jobs to are appropriately authorised. From 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021, the appropriate authorisations will comprise F extension, T extension or PTD authorisation. 

After 30 June 2021 PTDs will be the only valid authorisation allowing someone to drive for hire or reward. 

Visit Get a copy of my PTD authorisation for more information.

  Do I have to display the PTD authorisation document that DoT issues me?

No, you do not have to display the PTD authorisation document however you may need to display driver identity information if you are driving an on-demand charter or on-demand rank or hail (taxi) passenger transport vehicle (PTV). 

The Transport (Road Passenger Services) Act 2019 states that drivers of on-demand charter and on-demand rank or hail (taxi) PTVs are required to have driver identity information that is visible to the hirer at the time of booking, or display it in the vehicle/on person.

  Will I still need to display driver ID information?

Yes. If you are currently driving an on-demand charter (OD-C) or on-demand rank or hail (OD-RH) passenger transport vehicles (PTVs), you are required to display driver identity information. 

These requirements do not apply to drivers for regular passenger transport, tourism passenger transport, community or courtesy services.

There will be a change to the driver ID requirements for drivers of on-demand charter vehicles Ė however, the change will only apply when the driver transitions from an F or T extension, to a PTD authorisation.  

If you drive an on-demand charter vehicle, when you apply for and are granted your PTD authorisation you will have to display your:

  • first name;
  • photo; and
  • PTD authorisation number.

This information can be displayed either at the time of booking (e.g. in an app), in the vehicle or on your person. 
When you are granted a PTD authorisation, a new driverís licence card will not be issued. 

There are no changes to your driver ID requirements for drivers of on-demand rank or hail vehicles (taxis). Your taxi driver ID (produced by DoT) will continue to be valid.

There are no driver identity requirements for drivers of other types of passenger transport vehicles, such as regular passenger transport (RPT) or tourism passenger transport (TPT). 

  Will DoT still produce taxi ID cards?

Yes, DoT will continue to produce ID cards for drivers doing on-demand rank or hail (taxi) work. There is no cost for a taxi ID card to be created by DoT. Any new driver who expects to drive a taxi will need to contact DoT with evidence of their association with an authorised taxi booking service or be an authorised on-demand booking service in their own right.

  Can I still drive if Iím waiting for DoT to make an ID card for me?

It is a legal requirement for drivers of on-demand charter and on-demand rank or hail (taxi) vehicles to display driver ID information while driving for hire or reward. If youíre waiting for DoT to make you a card, you can still display a document you make yourself, as long as it meets the requirements listed on the website.

  When will my PTD authorisation expire and how will I know itís about to expire?

PTD authorisations are valid for 12 months from the date of issue Ė the date of issue will be recorded on your PTD authorisation document. 

DoT will send you a renewal notice six weeks before your PTD authorisation is due to expire. 

  What will I need to do to renew my PTD authorisation?

You will need to renew your PTD authorisation via DoTDirect. If you do not renew your PTD authorisation before it expires your authorisation will not be in force until the new annual fee is paid. This can be up to 6 months after the expiry.

If you wish to continue to operate as a passenger transport driver outside of this 6 months, you will need to make a new application and the application and authorisation fees will need to be paid again. 

A new NPC and commercial driver medical report will be required to be submitted to DOT every five years, unless DoT becomes aware of an issue that may require either one of these documents to be provided at an earlier time. 

 

Page last updated: Tue Nov 17 2020 11:27:18 AM