Suspend the training contract

If you or your apprentice or trainee can't fulfil your training obligations for a specific period but want to keep your commitment to the training contract and each other, you can apply for a suspension of the training contract.

There are 3 types of suspensions used for different purposes.

Reasons to suspend a training contract

You can apply for a suspension for reasons such as:

  • temporary closure of your business
  • seasonal lack of work.

Apprentices and trainees can apply for a suspension because of:

  • recovery from illness or injury
  • parental leave
  • a 'gap year' away from work
  • reasons why they can't meet their obligations under the training contract for a specified period.

Suspending a training contract means that you can avoid cancelling and restarting a new one.

It is separate from your employment contract and means that you must negotiate any other arrangements like leave and pay separately.

Conditions for suspending

Your training contract can be suspended by mutual agreement between you and your apprentice or trainee.

You can't force your apprentice or trainee to agree to a suspension.

Likewise, your apprentice or trainee can't simply stop working without your consent.

If you need to temporarily suspend the training contract, other options to continue the apprenticeship or traineeship should be attempted first, such as:

  • arranging for the apprentice or trainee to attend training with their supervising registered training organisation
  • allowing the apprentice or trainee to take their paid entitlements (e.g. annual leave)
  • temporarily or permanently transferring the training contract to another employer.

Mutual suspension of a training contract

If you and your apprentice or trainee agree to suspend the training contract, you need to discuss dates. The start date cannot be less than 7 days from the date of application is given to your AASN provider or us.

How to mutually suspend a training contract

Step 1: Agree with your apprentice or trainee on the start and end dates of the proposed suspension.

Step 2: Get signed consent from a parent or guardian if your apprentice or trainee is under 18.

Step 3: Fill out Form ATF-037.

How to change your mind

To change your mind after you have already agreed to a suspension, you can 'withdraw your consent'.

Step 1: Apply in writing to your AASN provider.

Step 2: Apply within 7 days of lodging the application to suspend the training contract.

How to report your apprentice's early return to work

If your apprentice or trainee returns to work earlier than the date recorded in the application for suspension of a training contract, you need to notify your AASN provider.

Step 1: Notify your AASN provider.

Step 2: Advise them of the revised start date.

Step 3: Your AASN provider will notify us of the revised date.

Suspension of a training contract by one party

Sometimes, one party to the training contract, either you or your apprentice or trainee, may not be able to agree or consent to a proposed suspension of the training contract at the time.

For example, your apprentice or trainee may take sick leave and be so unwell that they can’t discuss the situation.

In situations like this, the other party can apply to suspend both parties' contract responsibilities.

How to suspend a training contract by one party

Step 1: State reasons for the proposed suspension, including why you believe the other party cannot consent to the suspension.

Step 2: Provide start and end dates for the proposed suspension.

Step 3: Fill out Form ATF-049.

Temporary suspension of a training contract

If you can't provide the training, as outlined in the training plan, for your apprentice or trainee, you can apply for a temporary suspension of less than 30 days.

How to apply for a temporary suspension

Step 1: State the reasons for the temporary suspension and the proposed dates for suspension.

Step 2: Fill out Form ATF-048.

Step 3: Provide a copy of the application to the apprentice or trainee and advise them that they may give information about the proposed temporary suspension to us within 5 days of receiving the application.

Step 4: Keep a record of step 3.

Step 5: Contact Apprenticeships Info to discuss your application. We will investigate your situation.

Step 6: We will advise you whether you application for suspension has been approved or not.

Step 7: If circumstances change after we approve your temporary suspension and you can provide your apprentice or trainee with training stated in the training plan, you must:

  • resume their training
  • notify us immediately, in writing and over the phone, that your apprentice or trainee has resumed their training.