Managing apprentices who have been furloughed
The government has confirmed that apprentices can be furloughed in the same way as other employees and they can also continue to train whilst furloughed.
However, employers must pay apprentices at least the Apprenticeship Minimum Wage, National Living Wage or National Minimum Wage for all the time they spend training. This means employers must cover any shortfall between the amount they can claim for wages and the appropriate minimum wage.
Training and end-point assessments
Training providers have been asked to deliver learning and end-point assessments, where possible, remotely. If this can’t be done, apprentices can have their assessment time-frame and exam extended.
Break in learning
Employers and training providers have been asked to report and initiate a “break in learning” where the interruption to learning is likely to be longer than four weeks. In normal circumstances, this would be the responsibility of the apprentice.
Disruption to employment
Where apprentices have been furloughed and the training provider can deliver training remotely, they are permitted to continue with their course. Where apprentices are placed on unpaid leave, a break in learning should be considered, if appropriate.
Where apprentices are made redundant due to the coronavirus pandemic, the government has vowed to support them in finding alternative employment to continue their apprenticeship as quickly as possible and within 12 weeks. However, the government is reviewing whether this 12-week period is extended.
Payments to training providers
Apprenticeship training providers should continue to be paid retrospectively for the training they have delivered and can evidence. Employers should not use the apprenticeship service to pause or stop payments to the training provider for any training they have already delivered.
The material contained on this website contains general information only and does not constitute legal or other professional advice and should not be relied upon as such. While every care has been taken in the preparation of the information on this site, readers are advised to seek specific legal advice in relation to any decision or course of action.