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Read Civil Procedure updates, alerts, news, and legal analysis from leading lawyers and law firms:

FRANCHISOR 101: Arbitr-“all”

by Lewitt Hackman on

A federal court in New Jersey granted a franchisor's motion to compel arbitration of disputes involving seven frozen yogurt franchises, even though the claims were subject to different arbitration provisions in different...more

Successor Liability? Double-Check Those Assets!

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

The intersection of franchise law and general corporate law is extensive. A recent decision in the Michigan Court of Appeals (Court) highlights the importance of thoroughly understanding and considering the ramifications of...more

Does Arbitration Make Sense For Franchisors? A Litigator’s Perspective

by Mulcahy LLP on

Let’s face it; arbitration is not always the quicker, cheaper forum for parties to resolve their differences. Although arbitration does have the potential to be more economical and efficient than court, in practice, these...more

Implied Covenant Of Good Faith Does Not Trump Express Terms

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit upheld a New Jersey district court’s decision that 7-Eleven did not violate the New Jersey Franchise Practices Act (NJFPA) after the franchisor terminated a New Jersey...more

Second Circuit Rules on Chapter 11 Cram-Down, Make-Whole, and Subordination Issues

by Jones Day on

The Situation: In In re MPM Silicones, L.L.C., secured noteholders argued that replacement notes distributed to them under a cram-down chapter 11 plan should bear market-rate interest rather than the lower formula rate...more

When a Warehouse Is a 'Place of Business' Under the New Jersey Franchise Practices Act

by Pepper Hamilton LLP on

A recent federal court opinion overlooked a plain-language requirement of the “place of business” element of a claim under the New Jersey Franchise Practices Act (NJFPA), N.J.S.A. § 56:10-1 et seq., potentially expanding the...more

Federal Court Concludes Franchisor Was NOT Joint Employer

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

Another case has been decided adding to the back and forth in the legal world on the issues of a joint employer relationship of a franchisor and its franchisee and vicarious liability and agency between a franchisor and...more

The Court as a Collection Agency

by Bennett Jones LLP on

Security for judgment is an exceptional remedy only granted in exceptional circumstances. The court prefers to leave debt collection under the auspices of the Civil Enforcement Act. Nevertheless, exceptional circumstances do...more

Franchisor's Racial Animus Is Irrelevant in Determining Legality of Franchise Termination Under NJ Franchise Practices Act

by Pepper Hamilton LLP on

In a recent win for franchisor 7-Eleven, Inc., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit upheld a New Jersey district court’s ruling that 7-Eleven properly terminated its franchise agreements for cause based on the...more

Seventh Circuit Holds Footlong Settlement Falls Short

The Seventh Circuit’s rejection of a class action settlement in a case alleging consumer fraud against Subway for allegedly “shorting” customers of its Footlong sandwiches illustrates the pitfalls of settlements that provide...more

California Courts Continue to Void Forum Selection Clauses in Franchise Agreements Under a Questionable Mutual Assent Theory

by Mulcahy LLP on

The Ninth Circuit and California Court of Appeal generally continue to render forum selection clauses in franchise agreements unenforceable. This has been a hot topic among franchise litigators and on our blog....more

Franchise Litigation Rising Over Dietary Considerations

by Lewitt Hackman on

Rising concerns over food sourcing and preparation is leading to more and more litigation for restaurants and franchises. Most of the lawsuits claim discrimination, which makes sense as many dietary strictures are rooted...more

FRANCHISOR 101: Selective Enforcement of Franchise Agreement Provisions

by Lewitt Hackman on

A franchisor's ability to set renewal terms can bind franchisees to terms in a later franchise agreement before the renewal agreement even exists. In a recent case, a franchisor could enforce a hypothetical non-compete...more

Un-Vacated: Nevada Supreme Court Confirms $6.7M Franchise Arbitration Award

In a decision that is very skinny on the facts, a unanimous Nevada Supreme Court recently un-vacated a significant arbitration award in a dispute over dental franchises. In Half Dental Franchise, LLC v. Houchin, 2017 WL...more

Navigating The Private Right Of Action Under The California Franchise Investment Law

by Mulcahy LLP on

The California Franchise Investment Law (“CFIL”) regulates both the sale and disclosure of franchise opportunities within the state. The law was enacted to “provide each prospective franchisee with the information necessary...more

License to Sue? Court Rules That a Motor Vehicle Dealer Does Not Need a Dealer’s License to Bring a Statutory Claim for...

by Mulcahy LLP on

California’s motor vehicle code allows dealers to bring suit against manufacturers for terminating the dealer without good cause. See California Vehicle Code §§ 11713.3, 3060, 3061 and 3066. As currently written, the...more

Is Everything “Settled” In Your Settlement Agreement? Not Quite!

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

A recent case involving the Whataburger franchise system reminds franchisors of the importance of the use of iron-clad language when granting future development rights. In Whataburger, Inc. et. al. (“Whataburger”) v....more

Joint Amicus Brief Filed to Protect Franchise Business Model - BB&K’s Thomas O’Connell Counsel of Record

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

Best Best & Krieger LLP attorneys Thomas O’Connell, as counsel of record, and Roger Crawford recently submitted an amicus curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the International Franchise Association, American...more

FRANCHISEE 101: McDonald's Shaking Damages for OT Policy

by Lewitt Hackman on

In Los Angeles Superior Court, McDonald's claimed victory when 6,600 workers seeking $41 million in back pay and penalties came away with less than 2% of the amount sought in a claim that the fast-food giant cheated them out...more

FRANCHISOR 101: Donut Franchise Relationship Dissected by Court

by Lewitt Hackman on

The parent of Dunkin' Donuts was named along with Starbucks and about 80 other coffee sellers, distributors and retailers in a 2010 lawsuit alleging violations of California's Proposition 65 and Safe Drinking Water and Toxic...more

Shifting Sands Continue to Undermine Traditional Definitions of Employment

On June 7, 2017, the Wage and Hour Division of the United States Department of Labor withdrew two Administrator’s Interpretations issued during the Obama administration that took a broad view of the employment relationship...more

Appellate Court Notes

by Pullman & Comley, LLC on

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: - SC19799 - Middlebury v. Connecticut Siting Council Neighbors unsuccessfully challenged the modification of an approval for a new power plant before the Siting Council claiming...more

Food & Beverage Litigation Update | June 2017 #3

FDA Delays Compliance Date for Nutrition Facts Labeling - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced that it will postpone the deadline for food companies to use a revised Nutrition Facts label on packaged...more

Putative Class and Collective Action Under Enjoined U.S. DOL Overtime Rule Appears to Face Strong Argument for Dismissal

by Littler on

On June 7, 2107, a plaintiff brought a putative class and collective action against Chipotle for alleged violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act and New Jersey’s Wage and Hour Law. The plaintiff asserts the company...more

Franchisors, Got Claims? Don't Let Them Spoil Like Bad Cheese

by Lewitt Hackman on

This is the tale of two restaurants, each facing trademark infringement claims under the Lanham Act brought by two, separate franchisors. The franchisees’ restaurants had three things in common: First, cheese is a key...more

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