How to avoid constructive dismissal claims

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Lord Sugar is as famous for his business success as he is for his “You’re Fired” catchphrase, but after seven series of ‘The Apprentice’ producing seven winners, only one still works for him.

Claire Best and Karen Plumbley-Jones of Bond Pearce recently wrote in about Stella English, the winner of series six, who recently announced plans to sue Lord Sugar for constructive dismissal.

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About Robert Lovell

Business and finance journalist


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    09th Mar 2012 09:36

    A better way, becoming more popular, ....

    .... don't employ anyone.

    Thanks (5)
    09th Mar 2012 11:16

    I wonder if

    she will get another Job ?

    at least Lord Alan can afford it !

    From what I have seen of the apprentice they all seem to deserve each other !

    Obviously goes through employees at a fair old rate !

    Thanks (1)
    By maxxy
    09th Mar 2012 11:17

    Once in a lifetime opportunity

    Great article and good reminders.

    Personally I will be watching this to see if the Apprentice constructive dismissal claim also considers this in the context of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and whether any compensation considers this as it's my understanding that under an apprentice banner payouts will be considerably more than for standard job roles.

    Is there a view on this from HR Zone?

    Thanks (0)
    09th Mar 2012 11:36

    Occupational Health is under-rated

    Under today's litigious atmosphere, I would draw everyone's attention to this little appreciated profession.  Ok so my wife is one.  Her results are always phenomenol, and her proactive advice has saved her clients several thousands of pounds.  Too many Personnel/Human Resources departments fail to carry out the guidelines needed for Employment Law, which has grown "like Topsy".   The lawyers are then consulted, and we all know what "value for money" that produces.  My wife has praise heaped on her, because of the positive and economic solutions that she "prescribes" - before the lawyers get involved.  Yet she is looking forward to retirement in a couple of years.  Any decent Occupational Health Advisors out there, please? 

    Thanks (0)
    09th Mar 2012 12:04

    The Apprentice

    It seems to be clear that Lord Sugar does not want these people working for him beyond a strictly time limited period, which he may or may not have explained to them. He pretty obviously does not want to fork out the advertised £100,000 salary for more than a year or two to his apprentices, when what they are doing might not be worth that amount of money to him.

    The idea of the apprentice as a series is showing how to get people into a role with an employer and what might be required in that role; most of his candidates really dont have a clue about business anyway and those who do reach the final are pretty lucky to do so. Having said all of that, Stella English was one of the very few who really impressed me; she was a real professional. But I think she would be better off going elsewhere and getting another role rather than worrying about whether or not Lord Sugar is going to re-employ her. Life is a bit too short for that. As to her constructive dismissal, I think that is a bridge too far; I would have thought that Lord Sugar would probably have explained himself to her pretty concisely. I think this is just a bit of frisson for employment lawyers thinking that they can have a bit of a day doing ambulance chasing. Good luck to them if they really think they can take on Lord Sugar. But I think its a bit of a storn in a teacup, quite frankly.

    Thanks (0)
    09th Mar 2012 12:33


    I know her brother ...Johnny

    Thanks (0)
    09th Mar 2012 12:50

    I think she ...

    ... didn't understand that the job was just an opportunity to prove herself, she had to perform for Alan Sugar or she was of no use to him.

    Thanks (0)
    09th Mar 2012 13:29


    It's not real, it's only a gameshow.

    Employment legislation is surely there to protect real people in real jobs.

    Presumably Andrew Lancel has a claim now then.


    Thanks (0)