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HMRC internal manual

National Minimum Wage Manual

Entitlement to national minimum wage: schemes to provide training, work experience or temporary work or to help to find work.

Relevant legislation

The legislation that applies to this page is as follows:

* National Minimum Wage Regulations 2015, regulations 51 & 52


Training, work experience, temporary work and schemes for seeking or obtaining work

Workers (NMWM05020) under section 54(3) of the National Minimum Wage Act 1998 who are participants in a Government scheme, or on a scheme funded in whole or part under the European Social Fund, to provide them with:

  • training, or
  • work experience, or
  • temporary work, or
  • to assist them to seek or obtain work,

do not qualify for the national minimum wage, where they are working under Government arrangements and not receiving (or entitled to receive) any payments from the employer (other than reasonable expenses actually incurred, or estimated to have been incurred, in order to undertake and/or enable them to perform their duties

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Trial periods of work

Workers who are participating in a trial period of work with an employer for six weeks or less do not qualify for the national minimum wage for that period if the scheme is funded under Government arrangements (including those fully or partly funded under the European Social Fund).

See also the special rules that apply where workers are;

  • doing work experience as part of a Higher Education Course (NMWM05340) or Further Education course (NMWM05342), or
  • participating in the European Community Leonardo da Vinci and Youth in Action Programmes (NMWM05360), European Community Erasmus Programme or Comenius Programme (NMWM05362), or
  • participating in a scheme after being homeless or residing in a hostel for homeless persons (NMWM05350).