For those unfamiliar with the term, a franchisor is a person (or company) who allows an individual to run a location of their business for a fee. This often occurs with fast food outlets (think McDonalds, KFC and even Donut King), but the franchisor will retain ownership of the overarching company itself, any trademarks, and the company’s products. When it comes to allowing individuals to run one your locations, it is important that you seek the assistance of a franchise lawyer if you want to ensure that you and your business are protected against any problems that may crop up.
There are a number of risks for a franchisor that would require the legal assistance of an experienced franchise lawyer, including:
A lawsuit launched by a franchisee (the individual whom you have entrusted to run one of your locations) who is trying to contest documentation and contractual agreements.
A competitor who has blatantly stolen one of their copyrighted products or trademarks and is trying to market it as their own.
Disagreements between the franchisor and one (or more) of their franchisees, especially during the transaction and business planning stages.
Thankfully, franchise lawyers are able to help franchisors out in a number of ways on an ongoing basis for the life their business, including:
Being adept at creating highly effective and bulletproof legally binding documents and contracts; the lawyer will ensure that the terms of the franchisor/franchisee relationship and the franchisee/customer relationship are clearly stated.
Giving advice and providing franchisors with the necessary documentation for controlling problems within their business. The lawyer can also act as a mediator during the transaction and business planning stages.
Periodically reviewing a franchisor’s legal documentation (such as agreements and contracts) and making any updates or revisions in a way that is correct and legal.
Ensuring that all of your business documents and contracts are compliant with government regulations, which may involve making amendments as new laws are passed.
Many people tend to think that franchise lawyers are only beneficial for the franchisees of a particular business. Whilst there can be no disputing that this is true, lawyers are probably more important for a franchisor (who has a lot more to lose should something go wrong). By employing a franchise lawyer the moment you think about expanding your business, you can ensure that every aspect of your franchise is looked after, from beginning to end.