Honigman's Franchising Industry Group provides a full spectrum of legal services for franchisors and franchisees. These services include drafting franchise agreements and offering circulars; negotiating with and defending investigations by state and federal regulatory agencies; advising clients on a wide range of legal issues applicable to franchising; and litigating matters relating to franchisee terminations, unpaid royalties, enforcement of noncompetition clauses, fraud claims and franchise law violations.
Franchise Agreements, Offering Circulars and Registration
Our lawyers have successfully assisted franchisors with registration and compliance efforts in states across the country. Honigman's approach is to draft franchise agreements that give the franchisor powerful tools against uncooperative franchisees. Our deep franchise litigation experience allows us to structure strong and specific agreements to limit practical real world problems and avoid unnecessary litigation and disputes. Honigman works with franchisors' in-house personnel to perform many tasks associated with routine revisions to offering circulars and agreements, and registering, amending or renewing registrations. Our goal is to help our clients perform the tasks that they can handle most cost-effectively, and to be available when our experience is most beneficial.
Our franchise litigation experience is extensive and involves termination cases, defense of franchise fraud and antitrust claims, and non-competition cases. Honigman's approach to franchise litigation is to be aggressive and imaginative in taking action to quickly resolve franchise cases, without incurring the substantial costs that can result from lengthy lawsuits. Tactics can involve the early use of counterclaims to quickly demonstrate to our clients' opponents the "downside risk" of ongoing litigation. We are equally aggressive in educating opponents as to the weaknesses in their claims, so that they will be interested in quickly ending litigation, and in seeking creative settlements where appropriate.
We also work with our clients by advising them on proper documentation and termination procedures. We have found that careful attention to these issues in advance of litigation can substantially reduce litigation risks.
Our extensive background with many franchisors enables us to quickly and inexpensively accomplish many commonly occurring tasks, often utilizing existing precedents. For example, we have developed a "routine," with standard pleadings, for one franchisor's termination and collection cases.
We also advise clients on "real world" problems and solutions that involve realistic risks and concerns. Our experience with a wide variety of franchisors and franchisees gives us a perspective that can aid our clients in business planning, as well as with legal concerns.
Related Areas of Focus
As a leading business law firm, Honigman has attorneys who practice in other areas of law that often impact franchisors. Prominent among these areas are antitrust laws and intellectual property protection.
We have litigated antitrust cases throughout the United States, and advise many national firms regarding a variety of trade matters, including non-competition and non-disclosure agreements, and protection of trade dress and trade secrets. This proficiency helps us in advising franchise clients and litigating franchise issues.
In protecting intellectual property rights and brand integrity, we advise on how best to select, launch, protect and enhance trademarks and service marks and the products and services which they each symbolize. We strive to provide cost-effective strategies that help our clients to compete successfully and distinguish their goods and services in the marketplace, and in the end, to maximize the value of their IPR portfolios and their return on investment. We use an interactive, team approach that emphasizes transfer of knowledge in both directions. Understanding each client's way of doing business and business objectives is a top priority.