Franchises

News & Analysis as of

Georgia Court of Appeals rules franchisees can assert claims for relief under Georgia’s tort statute for violating the FTC...

The Georgia Court of Appeals recently upheld a judgment entered on a jury verdict against a franchisor for violating the Federal Trade Commission’s Franchise Rule, 16 CFR Parts 436 and 437 (the FTC Rule), finding that the FTC...more

Five Tips To Launching A Franchise Program Successfully

CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve spent years building your business, developing a loyal following, and honing your operations into a replicable format. You own two, three or maybe ten different locations, all profitable, and...more

Domino’s Delivers Key Ruling in Favor of Franchisors

The California Supreme Court recently issued an important victory for franchisors, finding that a franchisor does not stand in an employment or agency relationship with the franchisee and its employees for purposes of holding...more

Employment Flash - September 2014

In This Issue: - SEC Pays First Whistleblower Award to Audit and Compliance Professional - Supreme Court Allows Affordable Care Act Contraceptives Religious Exemption - EEOC Adopts New Pregnancy...more

Joint Employers Under NLRB Law

A. Introduction - Over the last few weeks, there has been a great deal of discussion in the legal media regarding the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) General Counsel’s (GC) argument to the Board, that...more

Employment Law Summer Recap 2014: Part 10 of 11 – Derek Jeter and Big Macs: What Will Happen to Their Franchises Now?

Sadly, for this writer, Yankee legend Derek Jeter’s playing days have come to a close. This summer we were able to watch the Captain and five-time World Series Champion take the final swings of his illustrious career where he...more

Restaurant Industry Newsletter - September 2014

Restaurant Franchisors Targeted by NLRB and DOL for Claims They are Joint Employers of Franchisees' Employees- Restaurant franchisors are facing efforts from both the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the U.S....more

Ninth Circuit Weighs in on When Franchisors May Be Liable for Franchisees' Unlawful Text Messaging Campaigns

In Thomas v. Taco Bell Corp.,[3] a franchisee association planned a promotion in which text messages were sent to 17,000 people in the Chicago area to promote a local sweepstakes contest. The lower court dismissed the case...more

Twelve Tips for Franchisors to Reduce Joint Employer Risks Under Today's Legal Standards

Franchise agreement recitals declaring your franchisee to be an independent contractor, not an employee, are not dispositive! Until now, the spotlight has never shined so brightly on franchising and, specifically, on...more

Are You a Co-Employer? FMLA Joint Employer Liability Can Be Deadly

To be covered by the FMLA, a private employer must employ at least 50 employees within a 75-mile area. If the employer doesn’t meet this threshold, it is not obligated to provide FMLA leave to its employees. However, an...more

Putative Class Members Not Lovin’ It – Court Denies Conditional Certification of Supersized McDonald’s FLSA Class of More Than...

McDonald’s, the fast food giant known for supersizing its orders, avoided conditional certification of an FLSA collective action this week based on the “very large” size of the putative class. The Eastern District of Michigan...more

FRANCHISEE 101: Forum Selection Clauses May Be Enforceable

A recent decision in Allegra Holdings, LLC v. Davis demonstrates that courts are enforcing forum selection clauses in favor of out-of-state franchisors and against in-state franchisees, notwithstanding franchise anti-waiver...more

NLRB Pushing for a Joint Employer Liability Model for Franchisors?

In a move that has caused great concern in the franchising industry, in pending cases filed by employees against McDonald's franchisees, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has authorized the filing of complaints...more

Retailer - Fall 2014

Counting the Cost of Payroll Cards: Are they Worth it for Employers? Retailers, as well as other employers, have grown to rely on payroll cards to compensate employees who may not have bank accounts. What are the legal risks...more

Lessons from Recent NLRB Actions

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Office of the General Counsel recently investigated allegations against various McDonald’s franchises and its franchisor, McDonald’s, USA, LLC. The charges were that the company...more

EEOC Sues Dunkin’ Donuts Franchisee for Religious Discrimination

Company Refused to Hire Applicant Because of His Religion, Federal Agency Charged - ASHEVILLE, N.C. - Citi Brands, LLC, a franchisee of Dunkin' Donuts, violated federal law by refusing to hire a job applicant who is a...more

Employers Beware: McDonald’s Memorandum Suggests That the NLRB Intends to Loosen the Standard for When Legally Separate Entities...

In late July, the General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (the “NLRB” or “Board”) issued a memorandum in a group of cases against operators of several McDonald’s franchises. The memorandum is significant...more

Franchisor Not Liable for Sexual Harassment of Franchisee's Employee under FEHA

In Patterson v. Domino's Pizza, LLC, the California Supreme Court took on the issue of whether a franchisor is an "employer" of its franchisee's employees under the Fair Employment and Housing Act ("FEHA") and therefore...more

Did You Know…California Supreme Court Rules – No Franchisor Vicarious Liability

The California Supreme Court recently held in Patterson v. Domino’s Pizza, LLC, No. S204543 (Cal. Aug. 28, 2014) that a franchisor could not be held vicariously liable under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act...more

Business Law Newsletter - Septermber 2014

In This Issue: - Monkeying around with Copyright Laws - Who can Own a Copyright? - Restrictions in Franchise Agreements Narrowly Construed - The Eight Corners Rule and the District of Columbia -...more

Considering the Eminent Domain of Sports Franchises

In a thought-provoking article, Anthony F. Della Pelle considers the interesting question of whether the City of Los Angeles could simply “take” the LA Clippers via eminent domain. One might typically associate California’s...more

California Supreme Court Clarifies When a Franchisee's Employees Can Bring Employment Claims Against the Franchisor in Taylor...

In Taylor Patterson v. Domino’s Pizza, LLC, the California Supreme Court restricted the ability of a franchisee’s employees to sue the franchisor based on theories of vicarious liability and the theory that the franchisor was...more

Popeye's Chicken Franchisee to Pay $25,000 to Settle EEOC Disability Discirmination Lawsuit

Longview Fast Food Restaurant Refused to Hire HIV-Positive Applicant Despite His Qualifications, Federal Agency Charged - TYLER, Texas - Famous Chicken of Shreveport, L.L.C. a Popeye's Chicken franchisee, has agreed to...more

Domino’s Pizza is Not Vicariously Liable for Acts of a Franchise Employee Where Domino’s Lacks Control Over Employee, Says...

Domino’s Pizza This week, the California Supreme Court held that Domino’s Pizza was not liable for the torts of an employee of a franchise because Domino’s had no contractual or operational control over the employee. The...more

Patterson v. Domino’s Pizza, LLC: Franchisors Are Not Vicariously Liable as “Employers” or “Principals” for Their Franchisees’...

In a significant win for franchisors, the California Supreme Court ruled 4-3 that although Domino’s “imposes comprehensive and meticulous standards for marketing its trademarked brand and operating its franchises in a uniform...more

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