Franchise Agreements

News & Analysis as of

Eighth Circuit Shows How Difficult It Is To Prove Arbitration Agreement Unconscionable Due To Cost

Almost two years ago in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors, SCOTUS significantly narrowed, but did not overrule, the “effective vindication” doctrine, which allows plaintiffs to invalidate an arbitration agreement if it...more

FRANCHISOR 101: Forum Selection Clause Held Enforceable

A federal court in Sacramento recently upheld a franchisor's forum selection clause and transferred an action brought by an area representative to the federal district court in the Western District of Texas....more

The GPMemorandum, Issue 191

In this Issue: - Georgia Federal Court Rejects Franchisees' Supply Chain Kickback Claims arbit - Court Holds Nonexclusive Forum Selection Provision Is Not Barred By The Minnesota Franchise Act - Courts...more

What Happens When a Franchise Agreement Ends, Part Two: Cancellation

In some cases, a franchise relationship ends after many years of business. At the point of termination, the parties must wrestle with a number of issues, including customers, inventory, and (as we reviewed in Part 1) the...more

Court Strikes Down Surcharge on Utility Users Imposed Under a Franchise Agreement

Surcharge Collected for General Revenue Purposes Under a Franchise Agreement must be Approved by Voters - A surcharge on electric utility bills collected by a power company pursuant to a franchise agreement and remitted...more

California district court enforces forum selection clause against area representative

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of California recently upheld a forum selection clause in favor of a franchisor and transferred the case to the United States District Court for the Western District...more

The GPMemorandum, Issue 190

In this Issue: - Court Grants Preliminary Injunction Enforcing Covenant Not To Compete Against Former Franchisee - Ninth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment In Franchisor's Favor - Seventh Circuit Finds No...more

Rumors Of Joint Employer Liability For Frachisors Are Greatly Exagerated

Despite the hand wringing and pontifications that franchisors will now be deemed employers or joint employers of the employees of their franchisees, that is simply not the case. The long held protections enjoyed by...more

January 2015 Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification Update

JANITORIAL FRANCHISE COMPANY SETTLES ITS APPEAL OF $4.8 MILLION JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF MISCLASSIFIED CUSTODIANS. Coverall North America Inc. settled the independent contractor misclassification case filed against it by a class...more

Franchising and Liability Under the FCPA

I am often asked about franchisor liability under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). Franchising has been a successful model in the US and now many corporations are looking at overseas expansion opportunities....more

Deciphering the Franchise Disclosure Document Part 2

If you are going to buy a franchise, federal law requires the franchisor to make certain information available to help you evaluate what you are getting into. This information is provided in a “franchise disclosure document”...more

Navigating the Cyber Liability Storm Part I

Franchisors are facing a precarious three-way intersection of increased accountability and regulation over consumer privacy, the growing volume and sophistication of cyber-attacks on consumer data, and the expanding...more

It’s All in the Family: Shifting Standards for Joint-Employer Liability

The concept of joint-employer liability is popping up in the news a lot again. This is because the NLRB is taking a more aggressive view on joint-employer standards under the National Labor Relations Act, particularly as to...more

Don’t Overlook The Need to Show Irreparable Harm When Seeking Injunctive Relief to Enforce a Non-Compete

When seeking preliminary injunctive relief to enforce a non-compete, the moving party is often focused on how obvious it is that the defendant breached the parties’ agreement. As 7-Eleven recently learned, however, even when...more

Deciphering the Franchise Disclosure Document Part 1

If you are going to buy a franchise, federal law requires the franchisor to make certain information available to help you evaluate what you are getting into. This information is provided in a “franchise disclosure document”...more

NLRB Complaints Claim McDonald’s USA is “Joint Employer” Liable for Labor Violations by Its Franchisees

The Office of the General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued 13 complaints, on December 19, 2014, against McDonald’s franchisees and their franchisor, McDonald’s USA, LLC (McDonald’s USA), involving...more

A Franchise Chain's Non-compete Agreement Comes Under Congressional Scrutiny

Tremors were felt throughout the franchise community when a recent article in The Huffington Post reported that the Jimmy Johns sandwich franchise is under Congressional scrutiny for its franchisees’ practice of requiring...more

For whom the bell tolls: the changing joint employer standard and what it means for your business

The joint employer standard is changing rapidly, and businesses – among them franchisors and investors – need to be aware of the emerging landscape to protect their brands and their bottom lines. The most important...more

NLRB Counsel Files Unfair Labor Practice Charges Against McDonald's Based on Joint Employment of Franchisees' Employees

Last month, the National Labor Relations Board’s general counsel gave notice of its intent to jointly pursue unfair labor practice charges against McDonald’s USA and its various franchisees. Like most franchisor/franchisee...more

Franchisors Beware: NLRB Seeking to Super-Size Joint Employer Liability

The National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB”) General Counsel’s Office has again signaled its commitment to expanding the scope of the current test for joint employment. In a move that could have implications for a broad...more

An Undesirable Consequence

An effort by Richard Griffin, the General Counsel (GC) of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), to raise wages and otherwise benefit franchise employees may have an unexpected and undesirable consequence: a threat to...more

NLRB Claims McDonalds Is “Joint Employer” of Franchisee Employees

On December 19, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued 13 complaints naming McDonalds as a “joint employer” of the employees at its franchisees....more

NLRB Office of General Counsel Alleges Franchisor Is Liable for Claims of Its Franchisees' Employees

On December 19, 2014, the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) Office of General Counsel took another step forward in its effort to erase the line between franchisors and franchisees. In a controversial move, the Office of...more

Franchisor Liability for Franchisee Employment Decisions: The NLRB's General Counsel Addresses the Move to Expand the...

In July 2014, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) took the unexpected step of authorizing complaints against McDonald's USA, LLC and some of its franchisees for the franchisees' responses to employee protests. The Board...more

Carving Out Small

States have been vested with the responsibility to regulate the manufacture, distribution, and sale of alcoholic beverages since the repeal of Prohibition. In carrying out this authority, many states have implemented a three...more

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