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If my employer says I have to attend training outside my normal work hours, should I be paid for this?

This is a tricky one and will depend on your contract and the nature of your job. In some cases it's clear that this is allowed if mentioned in the terms of the contract of employment, either specifically or implicitly. For example, the UK has around 300,000 apprentices who have contracts specifying a degree of unpaid training.

If it isn't mentioned in your contract, and you were never told that you would be expected to do unpaid training, you may have a better case. If you are paid by the hour, the introduction of unpaid training could be seen as a change to the terms of your contract (for which you need to be adequately notified – see our section on changes to contracts of employment), and you could well have grounds for a claim for unpaid wages.

The situation is less clear for salaried workers, as you may have a requirement in your contract to work occasional extra hours as the job requires, as long as it's within the 48-hour limit of the Working Time Regulations.

Whatever your situation, you should seek individual advice to clarify your situation. Talk to your union rep if you have one, or use one of the advice sources listed on our free help page.