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TNC Frequently Asked Questions

What are TNCs?
A transportation network company (TNC) provides prearranged rides for compensation using a digital platform that connects passengers with drivers using a personal vehicle. TNC drivers are referred to as TNC partners.
How does a company register as a TNC?
TNCs are required to obtain a certificate of fitness through DMV Motor Carrier Services, prior to offering or engaging in TNC services within Virginia. Once a TNC has applied for a certificate of fitness, DMV will publish a notice of its application on DMV’s website as part of the application process. The notice period allows parties to protest an application based solely on grounds of fitness. Before an intrastate operating authority certificate of fitness is issued, the TNC must have an insurance company provide DMV with proof of liability insurance.
Effective 7/1/2017, TNCs will have two fee options when applying for an original Certificate of Fitness: (1) pay a filing fee of $100,000 when submitting the application, or (2) pay a $20 surcharge for each TNC partner’s driver transcript obtained from Virginia DMV (this surcharge is in addition to the standard fees and charges that apply to driver transcripts).
Am I required to register my in-state or out-of-state vehicle in Virginia to provide TNC services here?
No. During the 2017 General Assembly, legislation was passed to repeal TNC vehicle registration requirements. Therefore, effective March 25, 2017, Transportation Network Company (TNC) partner vehicles registered in Virginia or in another state are no longer required to be registered with DMV to provide TNC services in Virginia. This includes vehicles registered for private and rental use. For more information on vehicles previously registered, refer to Registered a Vehicle for TNC Use - REPEALED.
How do I make a complaint against a TNC Partner (Driver)?
If your complaint is in regards to a safety issue which poses an immediate threat, contact local law-enforcement authorities.
For all other complaints, fill out a Consumer Complaint Against a Motor Carrier (form OA 411) and submit using the following options:
  1. Mail:
    • Department of Motor Vehicles
    • Motor Carrier Services (TNC)
    • P. O. Box 27412
    • Richmond, Virginia 23269-0001
  2. Fax: 804-367-1003
  3. Email:
  4. Telephone: 804-249-5130
How do I recognize a legitimate TNC driver?
All vehicles should have trade dress displayed on their vehicle to indicate which TNC they work for. Riders can confirm that the driver and vehicle matches what is shown in the app.
What is trade dress?
"Trade dress" means a logo, insignia, or emblem attached to or visible from the exterior of a TNC partner vehicle that identifies a transportation network company or digital platform with which the TNC partner vehicle is affiliated.
What requirements should my trade dress meet?
Virginia Code 46.2-2099.50(B) requires trade dress to be of such a size, shape and color as to be readily identifiable during daylight hours from a distance of 50 feet while the vehicle is not in motion and to be reflective, illuminated or otherwise clearly visible in darkness. Trade dress may take the form of a removable device so as long as the identification and visibility requirements are met while the vehicle is being operated as a TNC partner vehicle. If the trade dress is curled or a TNC partner vehicle has tinted windows such that the trade dress is not readily identifiable or clearly visible, the TNC partner could be cited by law enforcement.
All TNC partners are encouraged to display their trade dress on the rear passenger side window. Having a standardized location is helpful to passengers as well as law enforcement personnel.
As an alternative to or in addition to the trade dress described above, a TNC partner vehicle may be equipped with no more than two removable, illuminated, interior, TNC- issued, trade dress devices that assist passenger in identifying and communicating with TNC partners. Such devices may use a single steady-burning color while the TNC partner is logged in to a transportation network company’s associated digital platform and may change to a different steady-burning color once the TNC partner accepts a request to transport a passenger and is within 0.4 miles of such passenger. The illuminated display on each such device shall not (1) exceed five candlepower, (2) exceed 20 square inches, (3) utilize red, blue or amber lights, (4) project a glaring or dazzling light, or (5) attach to the windshield.
How do we know TNC drivers are safe?
Every TNC partner (driver) is required to undergo background checks prior to operating and every two years afterwards. TNCs are also required to review the driving record for a TNC partner before authorizing them to operate and every year thereafter.
Can I use my vehicle as a TNC vehicle if it has for-hire plates?
No. Only vehicles registered for personal or authorized rental use qualify to be used as a TNC partner vehicle. Licensed motor carriers operating vehicles with for-hire plates may use a digital platform in their operations - provided that they adhere to all limitations and restrictions for the type of operating authority they hold.
A DMV licensed broker may also arrange transportation through a digital platform with a licensed motor carrier that operates vehicles with for-hire plates provided that the transportation is allowed by the authority held by the carrier.
Can I use a rental vehicle for TNC purposes?
Can I work for more than one TNC?
Yes. However, you would be required to follow requirements set forth by each TNC, as well as display the proper trade dress when available to transport passengers.
Do I have to register my vehicle to provide TNC services in Virginia?
No. Effective March 25, 2017, Transportation Network Company (TNC) partner vehicles registered in Virginia or in another state no longer need to be registered with DMV to provide TNC services in Virginia. This includes vehicles registered for private and rental use.
Does Virginia accept another state's safety inspection program?
Yes. Effective 3/25/2017, TNC partners can use an approved safety inspection program from another state with an approved safety inspection program as long as the inspection is performed on annual basis.