The Larkin Hoffman Franchise Team represents clients in creating new franchise systems, as well as in representing existing franchisors with ongoing registration and disclosure requirements, relations with franchisees, and general corporate matters.
The Larkin Hoffman Franchise Team provides complete legal solutions regarding the structuring a franchise system, registration and disclosure of your franchise offering, and ongoing relationships with franchisees. Let us handle the complicated legal rules and regulations so you can focus on selling franchises, servicing franchisees, and growing the brand.
Services for businesses seeking to franchise
We represent businesses interested in exploring whether franchising is right for them, and in setting up franchise systems under complex state and federal laws. We provide the following services to businesses seeking to franchise:
- Complimentary initial franchising consultation.
- Consulting on structuring the franchise system (including the products and services that are offered by franchisees, territories granted, fees payable by franchisees, services offered by the franchisor such as training and advertising support, and obligations of and restrictions on franchisees).
- Trademark searches and registrations.
- Entity formation for a new entity to grant franchises.
- Drafting a Franchise Disclosure Document under state and federal laws.
- Drafting a Franchise Agreement and any other ancillary contracts (such as licenses, leases, equipment purchase agreements, guaranties, etc.) under state and federal laws.
- Registering franchise offerings and Franchise Disclosure Documents as required under state law (or claiming any applicable exemption).
- Developing and registering advertisements used in the sale or promotion of franchises under state law.
Learn more about the Steps to Franchising.
Services for existing franchisors
Once your franchise system is up and running, you’ll need to continue to comply with state and federal law regarding the annual registration and disclosure of your franchise offering and in your relations with franchisees. The Larkin Hoffman Franchise Team provides the following services for existing franchisors:
- Annual renewals of franchise offerings and Franchise Disclosure Documents as required under state law (or claiming any applicable exemption).
- Amending franchise offerings and Franchise Disclosure Documents in the event of material changes to the franchise system or franchisor.
- Reviewing, revising, and registering advertisements used in the sale or promotion of franchises under state law.
- Tweaking the franchise system and reviewing and revising Franchise Disclosure Documents, Franchise Agreements, and ancillary contracts, including addressing changes in the market and system and, potentially, to continue growing the franchise system.
- Expanding through franchising into other states and countries.
- Structuring and documenting more complex franchise arrangements (e.g., area development, subfranchising, and sales representative arrangements) where a franchisee may buy more than one franchise, or a person may have the right to sell franchises on your behalf.
- Negotiating with prospective franchisees that want changes to your standard Franchise Agreement, like lower royalty rates, and documenting agreed-to changes.
- Providing notices of default with or without opportunities to cure to franchisees that fail to comply with their Franchise Agreements (subject to applicable state law).
- Terminating franchisees that fail to comply with their Franchise Agreements (to the extent permitted by state law).
- Handling any disputes with franchisees (whether through structured negotiations, correspondence, or arbitration/litigation).
- General corporate/business matters (e.g., contract drafting and review, issuing or redeeming owners/partners, general corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions of franchise systems).
International experience and connections
Larkin Hoffman represents franchisors franchising across the globe. We also handle disputes with foreign franchisees. Specifically, the Larkin Hoffman Franchise Team has represented franchisors with franchising issues in foreign jurisdictions such as Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Malaysia, Mexico, the Philippines, Singapore, and the United Kingdom. The firm is also the Minnesota member of the State Capital Group, a global network of over 147 preeminent independent law firms with more than 12,000 attorneys representing 81 countries around the world. As a member of this group, Larkin Hoffman has access to local and regional practitioners across the globe.