Where an employee has been unfairly dismissed they are protected, and may make a claim, under the Unfair Dismissals Acts, subject to them meeting the criteria set down by the Act. Apprentices, however, are not covered by this legislation if their dismissal takes place within six months after the start of the apprenticeship or within one month of the completion of the apprenticeship.
The exceptions to this are if an apprentice is dismissed for:
- trade union membership or activity,
- their race or colour or sexual orientation
- their age
- their membership of the travelling community
- their pregnancy, attendance at ante-natal classes giving birth or breastfeeding or any matters connected therewith
If the dismissal occurs for any of the above reasons then an apprentice can make a claim at any time.