Professional training reform

06 Sep 2019


Eloïse Hullar

The law of 12 July 2019 (hereinafter referred to as the “Law”) , modifying (1) the Labour Code; (2) the modified law of 31 July 2006 introducing a Labour Code; (3) the modified law of 19 December 2008 reforming professional training (hereinafter referred to as the “2008 Law”) was published in Mémorial A - no. 497 of 12 July 2019. Its implementing regulation, the Grand-Ducal Regulation of 1 August 2019, was published in Mémorial A no. 564 of 20 August 2019.

The Law incorporates into the Labour Code the provisions relating to the apprenticeship contract and the internship contract stipulated by the 2008 Law reforming professional training[1] and adds certain clarifications and modifications. The main changes are as follows:

Duration of the apprenticeship contract: Article L. 111-3 (2) of the Labour Code explicitly specifies that the duration of the contract is the same as the actual duration of the apprenticeship. The Law provides that an initial one-year extension of the apprenticeship contract is automatically granted if the apprentice needs it to finish their training and a second extension of no more than one year may be allowed if both the parties to the contract agree.

Trial period in the apprenticeship contract: the Law now provides that the apprenticeship contract must include a non-renewable 3-month trial period.

Suspension of the apprenticeship contract: in the event of an extended absence due to illness, maternity or any other reason, duly justified and accepted by Professional Chambers, the apprenticeship contract will now be suspended and extended for the same period.

Transfer of the apprenticeship contract: the Law specifies that contracts can be transferred throughout the year and authorised within six weeks after the termination of the previous apprenticeship contract.

End of the apprenticeship contract: there are four new circumstances in which the apprenticeship contract can be ended, namely i) mandatory career change for the apprentice, ii) if the apprentice is removed from the training, iii) in the event of absence without a valid reason for twenty consecutive working days, iv) when the rights to sickness benefits granted to the apprentice have been exhausted in accordance with Article 9(1) of the Social Security Code.

Termination of the apprenticeship contract: it is now possible to terminate the apprenticeship contract, in addition to the situations stipulated by the 2008 Law, “if either party’s trust in the other has irredeemably broken down”, and “if the physical or moral integrity of either party is at risk”.

The prior agreement of Professional Chambers is still required to terminate the apprenticeship contract.

However, the Law provides that the contract can be terminated during the 3-month trial period without indicating the reasons, and without the agreement of Professional Chambers, the parties shall simply need to inform them in writing.

In addition, unless the contract is terminated during the trial period, the Professional Chambers can now terminate the apprenticeship contract in the circumstances described above.

Dispute procedure: According to the new Article L. 111-9 of the Labour Code, there is a “dispute”, “when one of the parties to the contract sends a request to terminate in writing and the other party expresses its disagreement”.

From now on, when the competent apprenticeship advisor receives the termination request, they will inform the other party to the contract of this and ask them to send a response within eight days. If there is no response within this time, the apprenticeship contract will be terminated by mutual agreement.

If the other party disputes the termination, the Professional Chambers will decide either to organise an conciliation meeting or to refer the matter to the Dispute Commission called “Commission des litiges”. If conciliation takes place, either it will be successful and result in an agreement to terminate or to continue the contract, or it will fail and the dispute will be referred to the Dispute Commission. If arbitration is not successful, either party can refer the matter to the Employment Tribunal.

Additional entitlement to leave: Apprentices will now be able to benefit from settling-in leave if they adopt a child[2] and “training” leave if they need to prepare for and appear in an international, European or Luxembourg trade competition[3].

Law of 12 July 2019 reforming professional training


[1] Law of 19 December 2008 reforming professional training and modifying a) the modified law of 22 June 1963 defining the salary system for government officials; b) the modified law of 4 September 1990 reforming technical secondary education and continuous professional development; c) the law of 1 December 1992 1. creating a public establishment for the development of continuing professional development and 2. defining frameworks for staff working in continuous professional development centres; d) the law of 31 July 2006 introducing a Labour Code published in Mémorial A no. 220 of 30 December 2008.

[2] Article L. 234-56 of the Labour Code.

[3] Article L. 234-59 of the Labour Code.