Are you wondering what components make up a tattoo apprenticeship contract? If YES, here is a sample tattoo apprenticeship contract template in 2023. A tattoo apprenticeship is a way for a student to learn everything they can from an established tattoo artist. It more or less starts as a hands-off experience where they are trained on safety, proper sanitation, and how to build a machine. The average apprenticeship takes about 2 years.

A good number of tattoo artists believe that if they went through a grueling apprenticeship, anyone that wants to get into the industry should do the same thing; almost like a rite of passage or something that resembles a college fraternity. The correct apprenticeship is worth its weight in gold, however all apprenticeships are not the same.

Note that majority of apprenticeships are not bad but they all will take time with the average one taking about 2 years to complete, plus you are not in control of when you start or complete your journey to becoming a tattoo artist.

Within the typical 2-year tattoo apprenticeship, almost all the instruction happens at the end of the apprenticeship. They have been many artists who leave an apprenticeship after 2 years and have never performed a tattoo on human skin. That is why it is necessary for prospective tattoo artists to ask about the apprenticeship they are looking at, they are all different and not regulated.

Most great tattoo artists are not great teachers. Just very few artists have the patience, time, and ability to properly teach their crafts to others. However, before any kind of apprentice can be taken, there has to be an understanding between both the employer and the apprentice in regards to what he/she is going to learn and the duties and responsibilities that the apprentice will carry out.

Contracts for apprentices can be one of two types, and it’s important to get the right one. You should also understand what contract your current apprentices are employed under so that you don’t fall foul of the various legal ramifications.

What are Components of a Tattoo Apprenticeship Contract in 2023?

The exact reason for creating an apprenticeship agreement is so that both the employer and the apprentice adequately understand what needs to be done during the duration of the apprenticeship program. This ensures that the employer is able to give the apprentice what he/she needs to learn, and the apprentice complies with what the employer requires from him/her. So if you want to make a sound apprenticeship agreement, here are basic components to include;

  1. Apprentice Basic Information

Note that this is to ensure that the person who will be taking up the apprenticeship is exactly who this person states that he/she is. This is not just for formality purposes, it’s mandatory that they provide the information to ensure the validation that this person was able to complete his/her apprenticeship.

Therefore, you’re going to have to make sure that the apprentice places his/her complete name on the document, as well as other basic information such as his/her contact details and more. Also makes sure that the apprentice checks that there are no errors in this section as even one error on the name might just be enough to nullify the contract.

  1. Purpose of the Apprenticeship

Some apprenticeships are focused on quickly training an apprentice to become an artist and others are more focused on forcing an apprentice to earn the right to be a tattoo artist. Since obviously, the purpose of this program is so that the apprentice will learn the basics of how to ink a tattoo, as well as be able to meet with other qualifications related to the profession, it is imperative you state this explicitly on the contract agreement.

  1. Duration

Note that this will depend entirely on how long the duration of the apprenticeship program is going to be. Note that some employers decide how long the apprenticeship is going to take without following industry regulation on this regard. Howbeit, the contract needs to be very specific as to the duration of when the apprentice starts, all the way to the final date.

  1. Working Conditions

This is where the employer talks about the apprentice’s working condition. The conditions of the job will differ according to the employer and services being offered, but the contract should provide information such as the location as to where the apprenticeship will take place, the facilities that will be used, the different equipment that the employee will have to work with, the different tasks and activities that will take place and much more.

  1. Rules and Regulations

There are also rules that employers create that their apprentices will have to follow. However, if you’re going to be creating these rules and regulations, then you need to be as strict as possible when enforcing them.

For instance, point out that you will not tolerate any form of insubordination from the apprentice. The point of the apprentice being there is to learn from you in order to develop the skills needed to take on the profession in the future. If the apprentice shows any form of disrespect towards you, then you can take the necessary disciplinary action as stated on the agreement form.

The apprentice is also expected to always come to work on time, as well as input the required number of hours that have been designated in the work schedule. In just about every apprenticeship program, an apprentice will be required to work a specific number of hours so that the employer may be able to state that the apprentice had completed the program satisfactorily.

However, should the apprentice fail to meet the schedule or has incurred too many absences without any cogent reason, the employer has every right to remove the apprentice at any given point in time.

Also, the apprentice will not conduct any activities or perform any tasks that he/she has not been authorized to do. The reason is so that the apprentice will not jeopardize the image of the employer or so that the apprentice will not perform any activities that may endanger himself/herself, the employer, or anyone else around them.

  1. Accident and Incident Reports

Although it’s just an apprenticeship program, there’s always the possibility of incidents and accidents occurring that could very well place the lives of the apprentice, employer, or clients in immediate danger. Therefore, it’s imperative that you point out that the apprentice must do whatever is possible to prevent these accidents or incidents from happening.

In the event that an incident or accident does take place, the apprentice has the responsibility to establish a detailed report with regards to whatever took place. He/she will need to include the date of the incident, the location as to where it took place, the time it took place, the number of people that were involved, the cause of the accident/incident and much more. It should be stated in the agreement that the apprentice must create an accident or incident report if ever they take place.

  1. Disciplinary Actions

Just like in every other job, disciplinary action needs to be taken if an apprentice continues to fail in meeting the employer’s expectations. Here is a list of the disciplinary actions that the employer may be able to carry out:

  • Verbal warnings: This is indeed the most common type of disciplinary action if someone commits minor offenses. A good example of a minor offense is if the apprentice continues to come to work late. So let’s imagine that the apprentice comes to work 5-10 minutes late much too often, then it’s not a cause for alarm. Howbeit, it will prompt the employer to reprimand the apprentice with a verbal warning.
  • Written warnings: If the apprentice is one that continues to fail with meeting the expectations or has failed to meet with the goals that you have set out for him/her, then you may create a written warning which will tell the apprentice why he/she is receiving it, the problems that he/she is facing, and the remedies that will help fix these problems. Note that this is where apprentices will have to be very careful as this means they’re on the brink of being booted out of the apprenticeship program.
  • Termination: Have it in mind that it is not just employees that can be terminated, apprentices can be as well. For instance, let’s say that the apprentice does anything to jeopardize the image of the employer or conducts activities that could put the company at risk such as bad hygiene in the tattoo parlour, the employer has every right to remove the apprentice from the apprenticeship program.

Sample Template of a Tattoo Apprenticeship Contract

This Agreement, entered into on this day ……. between,

……………. Hereinafter called the employer, and
……………. Hereinafter called the apprentice

The Term of apprenticeship commences on ……… and will terminate upon the cessation of employment, completion of the apprenticeship training period or by mutual consent of both employer and apprentice. The term of apprenticeship is flexible and a Completion of Apprenticeship certificate will be issued to apprentices who complete all portions of their training and achieve a pass mark.

1. The employer agrees to
  1. Accept and train the apprentice in all areas of the trade or occupation so far as the employer’s facilities and availability of work permit;
  2. Ensure the apprentice is supervised by a well experienced person in the said trade and the ratio of apprentices to said persons, as established by the state apprenticeship board for the trade, is not exceeded;
  3. Permit the apprentice to attend in-school training classes approved by the trade advisory committee for the trade; and
  4. Cooperate with the Apprenticeship Training Officer in monitoring and recording apprentice’s progress, and in scheduling in-school training.
2. The apprentice agrees to
  1. Work as an apprentice and be trained in the trade or occupation by the employer;
  2. Show caution and respect for the tools and equipment, goods and property of the employer and avoid any damage or waste of them;
  3. Cooperate with the apprenticeship training officer in monitoring and recording apprentice’s progress, and in scheduling in-school training; and
  4. Attend the required in-school training classes for the trade or occupation.

3. The apprentice’s rate of pay shall conform to the current collective agreement, if the employer is a party to the agreement, or to locally accepted rates in the absence of a collective agreement.

5. All parties agree to be subject to and carry out the provisions of the Apprenticeship and                                           Trades Qualification Act and Regulations as they apply to the trade or occupation and                      this agreement.


In Witness thereof the parties hereto have hereunder set their hands in the day and year aforesaid.

______________________________                ______________________________

Witness                                                                       Employer

_________________________________         _________________________________

Witness                                                                       Apprentice


========================================================================= Registered at the office of the Manager, Apprenticeship & Training this day of…….


______________________________ Manager, Apprenticeship & Training