This is a question which comes up a lot – and the answer depends on what the intern will be doing and for how long.
Unpaid work experience placements which are short-term are common and usually unproblematic. For example, businesses often have school age students undertake work experience. They spend a week or two shadowing employees and learning more about the business so they can decide whether or not they would like to pursue a similar career. Such placements are usually unpaid but some businesses offer expenses or modest remuneration.
If the internship is longer term and the individual is effectively doing the work of an employee, it’s worth giving more consideration to the pros and cons of paying or not.
We suggest considering the following:
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