Can I still work freelance at 18 if I'm on a Apprenticeship?


New Member
Hi Guys!
This is my first post and I dont know if Im posting in the right place but I wondered if you guys could help me at all.
Im a 18 year old graphic designer and Im currently doing a 2 year apprenticeship. I'm on a £100 pound a week and it barley sees me through. I love posting new work on my portfolio and keeping it all up to date while getting clients at the same time, but i wondered if that is allowed whilst working on a apprenticeship? I just want a bit more money in my pocket. I kind of want to know my rights if there is any at all.

Many thanks,
According to Lantra...

The commencement of the Apprenticeship Act in April 2011 requires all apprentices to be working under a contract of employment with an employer and hence paid a wage in line with the National Minimum Wage regulations. Therefore those who are self employed will therefore not be able to undertake an Apprenticeship unless the occupation/job has been designated as exempt under the ‘alternative completion condition’ regulations – see question 3

There are a limited number of skills, trades and occupations that will be exempt through alternative completion conditions. Those that have been identified as exempt, employment through receipt of a wage is not the norm within the sector are:

Freelance/Self Employed specific occupations within the Creative/Cultural Sector

So that to me reads as a big fat yes?

Get signed up with HMRC, get some clients, and get that cash coming in.
As a leveler to Paul's reply, whilst legally you may be able to, have you spoken to your employer or read your contract of employment? It's very possible that there will be a 'conflict of interest' clause in your contract that prevents you from undertaking your job (or one very similar) for anyone other than your employer.

Even if there's nothing in your contract stopping you freelancing, a conversation with your boss has got to be the best way forward. The last thing you want is to have to leave your apprenticeship because you were sacked from your placement.