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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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Can an apprentice be made redundant and does the trading

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Can an apprentice be made redundant and does the trading centre he attends 1x week have the right to give him 3 months notice to find further employment before terminating the apprentership
Assistant: Has he discussed the termination with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: No he’s been told today last day is Friday. He contacted college and they advised his apprentership will end in 3 months if hasn’t found further empoyment
Assistant: Does the workplace operate with employees, freelancers, consultants, contractors or with unionised employees?
Customer: Employees
Assistant: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: If he has any rights

Hello, I’m Ben, a UK lawyer and will be dealing with your case today. Firstly, I need to ask some initial questions to determine the legal position.

How far into the apprenticeship is he?

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
1 year 1 month he was employed with the same employee before as a labourer so overall he has worked at that company over 2 years

Thank you. I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Many thanks for your patience. Apprentices are legally treated as employees so they would have basic employment rights just as any other employee. In addition, they will have further rights for being an apprentice and these would depend on whether they are employed under an apprenticeship contract or an apprenticeship agreement. There are distinct differences between the two and I will explain how each one operates legally below:

1. Apprenticeship contract

This is the more traditional situation and exists if an employer has an agreement with an individual, the main purpose of which is for them to be trained by the employer. It is not necessary for any formal written contract to exist for that to be the case as long as it is clear that it was a relationship where specific training was the primary purpose of employment.

Someone employed under an apprenticeship contract would arguable have better rights that someone employed under an apprenticeship agreement. That is because in addition to a contract of employment, there would be a contract for training for the duration of the apprenticeship. In these circumstances an apprentice can only be dismissed if they were found guilty of serious misconduct or extremely poor performance, where it is deemed that they are untrainable. They cannot be made redundant, unless the business closes. If the apprenticeship is not terminated for these reasons, the apprentice could potentially seek compensation for the loss of earnings under the apprenticeship contract plus the loss of potential future earnings. The leading case on this is Dunk v George Waller & Sons.

2. Apprenticeship agreement

For such an agreement to exist it must be issued in accordance with the Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Act 2009 or under an approved apprenticeship framework. It must be in writing and state that it is issued under this Act or a recognised framework.

If the employment is under an apprenticeship agreement, the apprentice’s rights will not be as good as if they were employed under an apprenticeship contract. It means that there is no expectation that they would be retained for the period of training or that the employer could be acting in breach of contract if they dismiss them early. The apprentice can be dismissed subject to the usual fair dismissal rules, including being made redundant. They would be entitled to their contractual notice period and any accrued holidays but not to any further damages for the loss of opportunities or loss of training.

As to notice by the training centre that is indeed possible but it would depend on the agreement he has with them and if that is the notice requirement they have in place to do this.

Does this answer your query?

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Could you please let me know if it has answered your original question? You can simply reply on here with a quick ‘Yes, thanks’ and I won’t bother you again. Thank you

Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 days ago.
Yes thanks

All the best