Lawgistics: Your rights when taking on an apprentice

Time 2:04 pm, April 15, 2014

logoFOR many employers, taking on an apprentice is a great way to develop talent and grow your business. However, when taking on new staff there is always the concern that it may not work out, for either party.

This month a member of our Car Dealer Club asked the Lawgistics lawyers about the legalities of dismissing an apprentice, they said: ‘I am taking on my first apprentice but have been warned by other dealers that apprentices hold more rights than other employees when it comes to dismissal. Is this right?’

Lawgistics responded: ‘Under the Apprenticeship, Skills, Children and Learning Act 2009, apprentices should be signed up to a tripartite ‘apprenticeship agreement’.

‘The idea of these new agreements are to protect employers from the previous burden they faced when looking to terminate an apprenticeship early. Apprenticeship agreements focus the relationship on providing training to the individual.

‘This agreement must incorporate the apprentice’s key terms of employment, as you would in a standard Section 1 statement, but also incorporate the terms of the training to be undertaken during the period the apprentice is with you.

‘As apprenticeships are a fixed
term agreement, they usually cannot be terminated early. However under this act, if an apprentice is employed under an apprentice agreement, and not a contract of apprenticeship then termination can take place as with any other employee.

‘This, however, has not yet been tested in the tribunal system and so we would still advise caution around apprentices.’

If you have a legal question, by joining the Car Dealer Club for just £39.99 a year you can get advice like this when you need it.

Rebecca Chaplin's avatar

Rebecca has been a motoring and business journalist since 2014, previously writing and presenting for titles such as the Press Association, Auto Express and Car Buyer. She has worked in many roles for Car Dealer Magazine’s publisher Blackball Media including head of editorial.

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