14 June 2007
Fired Apprentice candidate to seek employment tribunal
The Apprentice candidate Katie Hopkins, who was this week dismissed from her position with the Met Office, is to take her case to an employment tribunal, the Times has reported.
Having last week turned down a place in the final of the business-themed reality TV show in favour of her real-life job, Ms Hopkins has subsequently been informed by the Met Office that she will not be resuming her position as a £90,000 per year brand consultant.
The reason given by the Met for Ms Hopkins' dismissal was her alleged poor time keeping and attendance record during her probationary employment period.
Commenting on the viability of her case, employment solicitor Samantha Mangwana of Russell Jones & Walker said that it was too speculative at this stage to consider whether she would be successful in the mooted lawsuit. It was unclear at present what the nature of Ms Hopkins' claim might be, although there had been suggestions that it might be a claim of unfair dismissal or discrimination.
She told the Times: "A minimum of 12 months service is normally required to bring an unfair dismissal claim, however if the claim is for discrimination, there is no such requirement."
In the penultimate episode of the programme, Ms Hopkins had told Sir Alan Sugar that concerns over childcare arrangements meant she would no longer be vying for the series' prize of a £100,000 per year job.