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HMRC internal manual

National Minimum Wage Manual

Entitlement to National Minimum Wage: Interns and internships

The term intern is not defined in national minimum wage legislation. It is sometimes used by employers but has no bearing on whether someone is a worker or not, nor on entitlement to the national minimum wage.

When presented with such an arrangement a NMW Officer may have to conduct a status investigation (NMWM04000) to establish the nature of the relationship between the parties and form an opinion about whether the intern is a worker (NMWM05020) or not.

Some people described as interns may actually be volunteers (NMWM05080) or voluntary workers (NMWM05090) or may be workers undertaking work experience as part of a Further Education (NMWM05342) or Higher Education (NMWM05340) course.

“Internships” appears to be more commonly advertised in certain types of occupations, such as working for Members of Parliament, in roles connected with TV, film or fashion.

There are several websites which offer internship posts and advice including .