"Avoiding the Accidental Franchise: Best Practices for Structuring Licenses or Distribution Agreements," Stafford, CLE Webinar
Partner Shelley Spandorf spoke at this Strafford CLE webinar on April 16, 2014.
This CLE webinar guides counsel in determining when business arrangements intended as licenses or distribution agreements could inadvertently result in the creation of a franchise. The panel discussed strategies for structuring these arrangements to avoid an accidental franchise.
- Determining whether a business constitutes a franchise
- Three prong analysis
- Variance among federal and state law definitions
- Strategies for drafting licenses and distribution agreements to avoid accidental franchises
- Trademark use
- "Marketing plan," "community of interest," or substantial assistance/significant control
- Franchise fee
- Complying with federal and state franchise and business opportunity laws once a franchise is established
- Franchise sales laws
- Franchise "relationship" laws
The panel reviewed these and other key questions:
- How do franchise arrangements differ from non-franchise licensing and distribution agreements? What are the pros and cons of each?
- What risks do businesses face if they inadvertently misclassify their franchise as a non-franchise license or distribution agreement?
- What federal, state and foreign franchise laws apply when a business is determined to be a franchise, and what are the key legal requirements of each?