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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    Default Legalities of a Sober Cab Business

    My question involves business law in the state of: Minnesota, Anoka County

    Hi, I am looking for any advice any of you may have for me and my business I am starting up which is a sober cab service.

    My business plan:
    Two people go to bar/party/event. Once there, every passenger that will be riding in the vehicle signs a waiver (which basically is for protection of property damage to their vehicle and personal injury/fatalities, and yes I will have the waiver looked over by a lawyer here.)

    One person then drives the person/s in there vehicle to there destination while my partner follows in our company car. Basically, we pick them and there vehicle up and bring them to where ever they want.

    As far as employing people goes (at least in the beginning,) I plan on contracting the work so I do not have to pay workers comp or any other costs of that sort. So eventually when I want to cover other bars I can contract the work to someone, and then they can subcontract to their partner. I will also have a lawyer look over the contract I write or just have a lawyer write it for me.

    Lastly, at least in the beginning I am starting it up as a sole-proprietorship.

    So, do any of you see anything wrong with this business model? Any other legal concerns I need to look into?

    What kind of insurance and specifically what for would be great to know if any of you know that also.

    Thanks, Mike

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Legalities of a Sober Cab Business

    This will probably be regulated as a taxi business. That means you would be facing a lot of regulation in an industry where, frankly, margins usually aren't all that good. Subcontracting is common in the taxi business - a lot of the time when you see a cab on the street, the cab company owns the taxi and the driver has leased it for the day. But to do that you need really good contracts, and you still need to be sure that you have adequate insurance. You should have a lawyer draft your contracts.

    From a business model standpoint, I think it's hard enough to get drunks to designate drivers or take taxis home. Unless all the bars in town are on one street, I suspect you'll find yourself spread too thin, and that you'll have a hard time generating enough business to cover the value of your time and your expenses. I hope I'm wrong....

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    Default Re: Legalities of a Sober Cab Business

    Thanks for the info in your response.

    From the business model point the case is: 8 bars within 5 miles of each other on one major hwy that gets 250,000 drivers every day during the week. Plus these bars will be advertising for me because it is to there advantage for several reasons.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    Default Re: Legalities of a Sober Cab Business

    Dealing with intoxicated people and having them sign contracts/releases is going to involve risky liability.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Key West, FL

    Default Re: Legalities of a Sober Cab Business

    You would be insane to do it as an individual. The liability issues are staggering.

    You will be operating a livery service or taxi service in effect. You will run into all sorts of trouble with existing taxi services. You will probably need a city or county license, liability insurance up the ying yang, etc.

    With one vehicle and all the bars letting out at the same time, you will not be able to make much money. I doubt anyone will pay more than what a cab costs. Trying to get signed agreements or anything legally valid with an intoxicated person is going to be a nightmare. Anyone could claim it wasn't binding anyway as they were intoxicated.

    This is NOT a viable business plan. It will not make any real money, much less pay you and another person any reasonable wage. You really need to come up with a better idea.

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