Having been dumped from the judging panel of X-Factor USA because of her accent, Cheryl Cole has instructed her legal team to pursue litigation against the Fox TV network.
Any case will hinge on whether it can be proven that Geordie can be classed as a racial or cultural type. If this is established, and it can be shown that Fox's decision to sack Cole was based on this, she could claim millions of dollars in compensation and punitive damages.
A spokesperson for the legal team said that all avenues were being investigated, and that the details of Cole's contracts with Fox and with Simon Cowell's Syco management company were being reviewed. He also said that a great deal of work was being done to establish whether Geordie could be considered as a race, and if this had ever been raised in a discrimination case.
The spokesman said they were also looking into alternatives to a case of discrimination on racial grounds. "It may be that racial discrimination is the wrong way to go," he explained, "It may be easier to sue by establishing that Geordie is in fact a disability."