Draft legislation has been published by the Government dealing with the Apprenticeship Levy. The legislation will be included in the Finance Bill 2016 and will come into effect from 6 April 2017.

The Apprenticeship Levy will be payable by employers with a total paybill of over £3 million and will amount to 0.5% of the total pay bill. Each employer will be provided with an annual allowance of £15,000 to offset against the levy. Funding for training will be accessible to all employers in England via the Digital Apprenticeships Service. The spotlight is on apprenticeships generally at the moment and, regardless of company size, now is a good time to review your apprenticeship arrangements (such as agreements and training provision). For example, are you aware that employers of apprentices aged 25 and under no longer have to pay National Insurance contributions? This change came into effect on 6 April 2016 and applies to both existing employers with apprentices and those taking on a new apprentice.