Prohibited Employers

Version Number


Implementation Date



All Training


To provide the actions:
  • to declare an employer to be a prohibited employer, and
  • for an employer to have a declaration revoked.


Employers may be declared as a prohibited employer if the delegated officer determines they are not suitable to employ an apprentice/trainee.  

Employers may also apply to have a declaration revoked.


​Queensland Department of Education and Training, (DET,
Qld) regional officer:
  • monitor and document the employers training and work practices and investigate any changes to a training contract, any complaints, observations or inappropriate outcome of training progress  
  • exhaust all possible avenues to correct the employer’s behaviour, such as education, warnings, fines, reprimand 
  • prepare submission to declare a prohibited employer 
  • maintain employer’s records including DELTA, and
  • add an ‘ad hoc risk identifier’.
Queensland Apprenticeship and Traineeship Office (QATO) - DET, Qld:
  • decide to declare an employer a prohibited employer
  • decide to revoke, not revoke or partially revoke if employer applies for revocation of prohibited employer.


​Declare an employer to be a prohibited employer

Step 1: Identify inappropriate work practices
When work practices of an employer of an apprentice or trainee are questioned, regional officer investigates:
  • training contracts that have been cancelled, expired or withdrawn 
  • applications for excessive extension of the nominal term 
  • applications for training assistance for cancelled apprentices and trainees 
  • complaints or adverse observations, warnings, fines or orders issued and judgments against the complainant
  • any inappropriate outcome during monitoring or training improvement visits
  • any pattern of behaviour that may question the employer's suitability to train an apprentice or trainee such as:
    • being unable to provide or arrange to provide the facilities, range of work, supervision and training required under a training plan to an apprentice or trainee
    • contravening any Act relating to employment 
    • being convicted of a serious crime 
    • behaving, or permitting their employees to behave, in an objectionable way towards an apprentice or trainee
Step 2: Apply for a declaration of prohibited employer
The regional officer:
  • prepare a submission and seek Director, Training approval.
The Director, Training:
Step 3: Consider the submission
  • The Manager, QATO considers application, seeks Legal and Administrative Law Branch opinion and makes a recommendation/s to Director, QATO
  • Director, QATO considers the recommendation/s and sends a show cause notice to the employer. 
Step 4: Decide on declaration
Once the date in the show cause notice has elapsed, QATO proceeds to declare or not declare the employer a prohibited employer.  QATO sends an information notice advising the employer of:
  • the decision
  • the reasons
  • the time period the action applies
  • the apprentices and/or trainees the action applies to 
  • the appeal options 
  • how to apply to revoke the declaration
  • the detailed information the delegated officer requires to consider revocation. 
QATO will inform:
  • the Department of Education and Training (Commonwealth) for the purpose of employer incentive payments
  • other relevant stakeholders
DET, Qld regional officers will provide options to any apprentices and trainees affected by the decision to prohibit an employer to maintain their training.
Step 5: Revocation process
An employer may apply for the revocation of the prohibited employer status in the approved form.  The application must detail the reasons why the employer is seeking a revocation. 
Step 6: Decision on application for revocation of prohibited employer 
QATO considers the revocation application and makes a decision.  
QATO will notify:
  • the employer that the declaration of prohibited employer is either not revoked, partly revoked or completely revoked
  • the reasons for the decision
QATO will inform:
  • the Department of Education and Training (Commonwealth) for the purpose of employer incentive payments
  • other relevant stakeholders

Online Resources


Template (DET, Qld employees only)

  • SharePoint - Prohibited employer - submission template

Letters (DET, Qld QATO employees only)

  • SharePoint - Prohibited employer - Information notice
  • SharePoint - Prohibited employer - show cause
  • SharePoint - Prohibited employer - written notice NOT declare as prohibited
  • SharePoint - Prohibited employer - written notice - decision revoke declaration 
Online materials

Review Date

Attribution CC BY
​Approved form - a form approved by the chief executive. 
Ad hoc risk identifier - an automated business rule that is derived from DET, Qld and other departments’ legislation, policies and procedures.  Additionally, a business rule for a specific purpose may be added for a temporary period.  DELTA automatically checks the contract details against all the business rules during the registration process.  
DELTA - Direct Entry Level Training Administration, DET, Qld's database of registered apprentices and trainees (for internal access only).
Employer - for the purposes of this procedure, an employer also includes an employer that is a Group Training Organisation (GTO) and a Principal Employer Organisation (PEO).
Submission – a brief containing relevant information including:
  • the full legal name and if applicable, employer’s structure
  • the history of unsuitable behaviour of the employer
  • a list of current apprentice/s and/or trainee/s in one or more apprenticeships or traineeships the proposed declaration will apply to
  • overview of the investigation with numbered paragraphs, timeline of events, identity of parties, sources of information, analysis of evidence, options and recommendations
  • copies of all relevant documents/correspondence to and from the employer 
  • written statements obtained during investigations and investigation reports 
  • signed records of interview 
  • recommendations as to whether the declaration is for a particular period or for an indefinite period
  • if the prohibited status is across the whole workplace or limited to specific apprenticeships/traineeships.