On Demand

Franchise Law Essentials


Created on July 13, 2017




Franchise businesses represent an immense sector of the U.S. economy, accounting for more than half of all U.S. retail sales and one in every seven jobs today. While most associate franchising with McDonald's golden arches, franchise businesses are far more diverse and touch at least 75 different industry sectors. The franchise method of doing business embodies the entrepreneurial spirit by combining the power of one party's brand and business methods with another party's desire to own and operate their own business. Yet, unlike other types of private consensual arrangements, franchise relationships are highly regulated by laws with potentially serious consequences including personal liability of a franchisor's management. Given franchising's popularity and economic importance, every practitioner should know the essentials of franchise law and when to suspect that a commercial relationship may be a franchise.

This course, presented by Rochelle Spandorf, of Davis Wright Tremaine's Los Angeles office, chair of the firm's National Franchise Practice Group, explains the fundamentals of U.S. franchise laws, including how to recognize when a license, dealer or distribution agreement is really a franchise. The course demystifies franchise sales compliance duties by explaining the basics of pre-sale disclosure and registration requirements, describes how franchise relationship laws regulate franchise parties, offers guidance for effective franchisee representation, and highlights key judicial and regulatory decisions in the practice area.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand what a franchise is and the distinctions between a franchise and a non-franchise license
  2. Review the basics of franchise sales laws, including the function of the franchise disclosure document, legal duties in franchise registration states, ongoing franchise sales compliance responsibilities, and the regulation of financial performance representations
  3. Comprehend the role of state franchise relationship laws
  4. Draft effective franchise agreements
  5. Identify key concerns in representing franchisees, with reference to important franchise cases and enforcement decisions

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