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Vol 7 (2009) - Issue 1

Australian franchising inquiries conclude (for now…)

Penny Ward, Partner, Baker & McKenzie, Sydney

Further changes may be made to Australia's Franchising Code of Conduct as a result of the inquiry into and report on the regulation of franchising in Australia by the Australian Federal Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services. Some of the Committee's recommended changes to franchising regulation in Australia are sensible, but others lack clarity and may, if implemented, lead to disputes.

Franchising in the United Arab Emirates

Richard Briggs, Executive Partner, and Armita Araghi, Associate, Hadef & Partners, Dubai

The United Arab Emirates (“UAE”) has not enacted and does not impose specific rules for the regulation of franchises. A range of civil and commercial statutes may therefore apply to franchise agreements depending on the specific arrangement between franchisor and franchisee. This article examines this legislative framework, in addition to considering issues concerning protection of trademarks, restraint of trade and injunction provisions.

“Just shake hands and be done with it” – What could be wrong with that?

Edward N. Tiesenga, Esq. and Thaddeus H. Goodchild, Tiesenga Gottlieb & Reinsma LLP, Oak Brook

Contract law can and should provide guidance in everyday business practice. But when these dealings are slipshod, undocumented, or based only on a proverbial handshake, the law struggles to enforce the intention of the parties, and as a result, may enforce nothing or something very unexpected and expensive. It is essential to understand some of the key legal issues before they arise, while all parties have a chance to improve their legal position, in case that position needs to be defended or attacked. In particular, this article highlights the importance of business records in everyday transactions as evidence should problems occur in the contractual relationship.

Franchisors registration and disclosure obligations under federal and state business opportunity laws

David W. Oppenheim, Partner and Felicia A. Nadborny, Associate, Kaufmann Gildin Robbins & Oppenheim LLP, New York

Business opportunity laws at federal and state level in the United States may impose disclosure and registration requirements that are separate and different from the laws regulating franchises. A failure to comply with these requirements may result in serious liability for franchisors. This article considers the precise legal definition of ‘business opportunities’, the various compliance requirements set out in the relevant federal and state laws, and the extent to which these laws apply to franchisors.