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HMRC internal manual

National Minimum Wage Manual

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HM Revenue & Customs
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Entitlement to national minimum wage: apprentices: specific Government training programmes

Relevant legislation

The legislation that applies to this page is as follows:

  • National Minimum Wage Act 1998, section 54(3)

For pay reference periods commencing

* on or after 6 April 2015; National Minimum Wage Regulations 2015, regulation 5(2)
* before 6 April 2015; National Minimum Wage Regulations 1999, regulation 13(6)

General

For national minimum wage purposes, a person can be treated as an apprentice if they are either;

  • engaged under a contract of apprenticeship (NMWM05240), or
  • a worker and participating on a specific Government training programme.

Specific Government Training Programme

In England the Government arrangements which can be treated as apprenticeships for national minimum wage purposes are:

  • From 1 October 2004 to 5 April 2012 programmes known as Apprenticeships or Advanced Apprenticeships.
  • From 6 April 2012, those programmes where an Apprenticeship Agreement has been entered into. These arrangements are known as Intermediate Apprenticeships, Advanced Apprenticeships and Higher Apprenticeships.
  • From 17 October 2014, those programmes known as a Trailblazer Apprenticeship.

In Wales the Government arrangements which can be treated as apprenticeships for national minimum wage purposes are:

  • From 1 October 2004 to 30 September 2010 programmes known as Modern Apprenticeships or Foundation Modern Apprenticeships;
  • From 1 October 2010 programmes known as Foundation Modern Apprenticeships, Modern Apprenticeships, Foundation Apprenticeships or Apprenticeships. From 6 April 2012, participants on these programmes will have an Apprenticeship Agreement.

In Scotland the Government arrangements which can be treated as apprenticeships for national minimum wage purposes are:

  • From 1 October 2004 to 30 September 2010 programmes known as Skillseekers or Modern Apprenticeships and the arrangements are for the purpose of gaining a Scottish Vocational Qualification (SVQ) at Level 2 or 3 or a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) at level 2 or 3;
  • From 1 October 2010 programmes known as Modern Apprenticeships.

In Northern Ireland the Government arrangements which can be treated as apprenticeships for national minimum wage purposes are:

  • From 1 October 2004 to 30 September 2010 known as - Jobskills Traineeships or Modern Apprenticeships;
  • From 1 October 2010, as ApprenticeshipsNI or Modern Apprenticeships.

If the worker is on any other scheme other than one of those listed above, (e.g. an SVQ or NVQ not attached to a scheme listed above) then they will not be engaged in a programme or scheme which can be treated as a contract of apprenticeship for national minimum wage purposes.

(This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)