Apprentice training costs – specific issues with payment

Conditions and entitlements for apprentices vary from award to award.

Many awards say that employers need to reimburse training costs for their apprentices. Whether employers need to make a payment can depend on the particular circumstances.

Check the award to see what applies in each industry and find out more about training costs and apprentice entitlements.

Apprentice leaving before 6 months

If an apprentice pays their costs upfront, but leaves their employer before 6 months are up, the employer doesn’t need to reimburse the costs.

If the employer pays the costs upfront and the apprentice leaves before 6 months are up, the employer can’t claim the money back from the apprentice.

Apprentice changes employers within 6 months

If the first employer already paid or reimbursed the costs for the training, the second employer won’t have to pay them.

If the first employer hadn’t paid or reimbursed the training costs, the second employer will have to pay them.

Apprentice fails a unit or stage

Employers need to pay the training costs for apprentices who fail a unit or stage, unless the apprentice is making unsatisfactory progress. They also need to pay the costs for repeating the unit or stage.

Employers can’t claim back costs that have already been paid for an apprentice who failed a unit or stage. They also can’t withhold money from the apprentice for the costs.

School-based apprentices

Employers need to pay the training costs for school-based apprentices in the same way as for other apprentices.

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