Both the federal government and many states have laws and regulations governing the sales of franchises. In general, the FTC defines a franchise as a continuing commercial relationship in which the franchisor provides the franchisee with the opportunity to operate a business that is associated with the franchisor's trademark and in which the franchisor will exert significant control over the franchisee's methods of operation. In return, the franchisee usually makes a substantial upfront payment and ongoing payments based on the success of the franchise.

Our lawyers have experience representing both franchisors and franchisees in connection with complying with state and federal franchise laws and regulations, as well as in managing the relationships between franchisors and franchisees, whether that means negotiating contractual relationships or litigating disputes. We have assisted new franchisors in setting up a franchise system, including preparation of franchise agreements and Franchise Disclosure Documents and counseling with respect to Ohio’s Business Opportunity Act. We have helped franchisees review these documents as well as set up their business entities and corporate documents.

Frantz Ward attorneys have a long history assisting businesses in additional services, such as:

  • Brand protection issues (trademarks, service marks, etc.)
  • Construction and improvement project counseling, negotiation, and drafting
  • Defending against joint employer allegations
  • Defending wage and hour claims (tip credits & exempt status under FLSA)
  • Employee handbooks
  • Employment contract negotiation and drafting
  • Entity formation and drafting of corporate documents
  • Financing, lending and collection issues
  • Franchise negotiations
  • Franchise standards enforcement
  • Insurance issues
  • Lease or purchase contract negotiations and drafting
  • Liability avoidance and litigation defense
  • Liability issues
  • Licensing issues
  • Regulatory issues
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