How is the Apprenticeship funded?Full government funding is available for an apprentice aged between 16-18 years old and where the employer employs less than 50 employees. Full funding is also available for apprentices aged 19 to 24 who have either been in care or has an education health care plan. An employer contribution fee will be required for:
- Non-levy paying employers recruiting an apprentice aged 19 or over
- Non-levy paying employers who employ more than 50 employees and recruit a 16-18 year old apprentice
Apprentice Minimum Wage
A National Minimum Wage for apprentices was introduced on 1 October 2010. The wage applies to all apprentices aged under 19; and apprentices aged 19 or over in the first year of their Apprenticeship.
As of April 1st 2023 the national minimum wage for apprentices is £5.28 an hour and applies to time working, plus time spent training that is part of the Apprenticeship. This rate applies to apprentices under 19 and those aged 19 or over who are in their first year. Apprentices must be paid at least the national minimum wage rate if they’re an apprentice aged 19 or over and have completed their first year.
Employers are free to pay above the new wage and many do so, but employers must ensure that they are paying their apprentices at least the minimum wage. If an apprentice is on a higher wage, the employer must continue to pay that for the remainder of the training or until the apprentice becomes eligible for the full national minimum wage.
You must be at least:
- school leaving age to get the National Minimum Wage
- aged 23 to get the National Living Wage – the minimum wage will still apply for workers aged 22 and under
These rates are for the National Living Wage (for those aged 23 and over) and the National Minimum Wage (for those of at least school leaving age). The rates change on 1 April every year.
|23 and over||21 to 22||18 to 20||Under 18||Apprentice|
Apprentices are entitled to the apprentice rate if they’re either:
- aged under 19
- aged 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship
Example: An apprentice aged 21 in the first year of their apprenticeship is entitled to a minimum hourly rate of £5.28.
Apprentices are entitled to the minimum wage for their age if they both:
- are aged 19 or over
- have completed the first year of their apprenticeship
Example: An apprentice aged 21 who has completed the first year of their apprenticeship is entitled to a minimum hourly rate of £10.18
The following rates were for the National Living Wage (previously for those aged 25 and over) and the National Minimum Wage (for those of at least school leaving age) from April 2016.
From 1st April 2021 the National Living Wage was extended to 23 and 24 year olds.
Financial Information and SupportGovernment support Employers are not required to pay Class 1 National Insurance contributions for an apprentice, if the apprentice:
- is under 25 years old
- is on an approved UK government apprenticeship standard or framework (these can differ depending on UK country)
- earns less than £967 a week (£50,270 a year)
FundingThe government will pay employers, no matter what size, £1,000 for each 16-18 year old apprentice they employ. Eligibility All employers are eligible for a £1,000 payment for taking on an apprentice who is either:
- aged 16 to 18 years old
- under 25 and has an education, health and care plan or has been in the care of their local authority
- 90 days of their apprenticeship for your first payment
- 365 days of their apprenticeship for your second payment