I was asked by my company to attend a training course provided by a third party, the aim of the course was to provide me with sufficient training in order to achieve a particular qualification.

I originally stated to those that were booking the course that, for the needs of the qualification that this course wouldn't suffice, but it was already booked before I could say where better to invest the companies money.

There was no mention of any sponsorship contract at this point, so I didn't really think anything of it. I figured if you really want me to do this course I will do it.

I completed the course and as per my original concerns it wouldn't provide me with the slightest chance of passing any qualification related exams. I spoke to those booking the course to say we should recoup our money on the course as we have clearly been missold a £10 course for £2k.

Anyway, I have recently (almost 2 months later) been presented with a sponsorship contract, which essentially says I have to pay back the amount of the course should I choose to end my employment with the company within 1-2 years or if I do not sit/pass any exams relating to the qualification.

I know with my employment I could choose to remain at the company for that period and never have to pay anything which would be fine, however I am considering my status at the company currently.

With the exam section, I explicitly said that the course would not be able to provide me with enough to take and pass an exam. Even the trainer running the course told me the same.

My position would be to inform them that I wouldn't be signing any contract for these reasons, and to reiterate they should be looking for a refund from the training provide not me.

I was wondering if anyone had any advice?

2 Answers 2


My position would be to inform them that i wouldn't be signing any contract for these reasons, and to re-iterate they should be looking for a refund from the training provide not me.

Well done. I'd add to your list of things to say that you "wouldn't have gone if I'd had to sign this ahead of time".

Thus far this isn't your problem, it's the company's problem. Refuse to sign and ignore the issue unless they escalate. They'll probably let the issue drop.

If they do escalate then your actions will depend a lot on what they do, ranging from "still refusing to sign and still ignoring it" to "seek legal council". However life is to short to map out what to do in every negative situation so wait for it to be a problem before you worry about it.

  • 4
    Just in preparation, check the legality of the sponsorship contract. For example where I live, if it is mandatory training, they can not enforce this system.
    – AsheraH
    Apr 8, 2019 at 16:34
  • @AsheraH In what system would it be legal to issue and enforce a sponsorship contract after the fact? They've sent them to a course and afterwards want them to sign to agree to pay for the course if they leave early or don't get a certain certification. I don't know of anywhere where this would be a legal enforceable construction. Apr 10, 2019 at 11:34

IMHO, sponsorship should have been signed prior to course enrollment

In current situation, you can inform them that you do not agree with the contracts terms and offer addendums or refuse to sign, stating that there were no mention of any obligation on your part when it was scheduled.

if there is no paper trail where they mention it and you say OK, you got the case.

On the personal note though, you can get pressured - threatened to sign the obligation, in that case you should look around.

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