Franchising & Distribution

Franchising & Distribution



  • Intellectual Property Issues in Franchising

Franchisors often have IP rights in the areas of copyrights, trademarks, patents and trade secrets. A strong franchisor-franchisee relationship recognizes how these intellectual property elements play into the success of their business models.

  • What To Learn From High-Profile Hacks

The data breaches experienced by major retailers and organizations remind us that our data security is constantly under attack. In this podcast, John details lessons learned from large data breaches.

  • Changing the Joint Employer Standard in Franchising

Recently, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), in a 3-2 decision along partisan lines, overturned the “joint employer” standard that has existed for the past three decades. This is a highly important decision because if a company is a joint employer, it could be subject to collective bargaining and a large variety of employment-related claims formerly reserved for the direct employer. We invite you to listen to this podcast in which Fox Partners John R. Gotaskie, Jr. and Elizabeth D. Sigety discuss the ramifications of the NLRB’s ruling on the franchise industry.

  • Dusty Franchise Agreements

Reviewing and revising franchise agreements is a critical but often overlooked task. Without proper and timely updates to agreements, franchisors can potentially expose themselves to a host of unexpected legal and administrative risks.
  • Bad Idea: Ignoring Your Online Social Critics

In the brave new world of viral online communications, it is critical to stay in front all of those complaints coming at you and to deal appropriately and successfully with any negative online comments about your brand or business. In this podcast, John highlights some key strategies to effectively diffuse online criticism and avoid potential legal liability for rash responses.

  • What Landlords, Franchisees and Franchisors Should Know About Franchising

Successful franchisors spend considerable time and resources helping their franchisees select what they anticipate will be successful locations based on a variety of factors such as demographics, road access, parking and household income in the local area. In this podcast, John highlights the protective mechanisms that successful franchisors often put into place to protect their investment of time and resources related to their franchise’s sites.

  • Do You Have a Plan for Deploying Monitoring and Tracking Software?
    (If Not, the FTC May Want To Speak With You)

In this podcast, John explains why organizations (including franchise organizations) should have a clearly articulated plan – one that includes full disclosure to customers – for the deployment of any software that can collect data on customers. The FTC is closely scrutinizing computer and data security issues, even in the absence of new mandates from Congress, which could put companies at risk.

  • Liquidated Damages Clauses – When Are They Enforceable?

In this podcast, John explains the enforceability of liquidated damages clauses and shares insight into how they are evaluated in court. He also discusses the recent case, LSI v. Roundup, which involved the termination of a franchisee.

  • Accidental Franchising

Did you know companies can unknowingly become franchisors without intending to franchise their business? In this podcast, John R. Gotaskie, Jr. discusses how accidental franchising can occur and what leaders of growing companies should be aware of. Join him as he talks through the potential benefits and risks of accidental franchising and lays out the state and federal regulations related to it.

  • Privacy and Franchising

Consumers express great concern regarding their online privacy and what companies and other “aggregators” of information are doing with the information they collect on the web. The stakes are high and come with substantial risks -- including a loss of consumer confidence in the brand, investigations from state and federal authorities and lawsuits from aggrieved parties -- if franchisors and other companies have incomplete policies and noncompliant practices. In this podcast, John covers the critical steps organizations can take to protect themselves in connection to their online tracking and collection activities.

  • Basics of Franchising

John covers some of the basic legal aspects of franchising, including issues of control, trademark and tax concerns, fees and agreements between franchisors and franchisees, state regulation and oversight and the all-important Franchise Disclosure Document.

  • Social Media and Franchising

Social media has changed the way companies advertise their brand. In this podcast, John discusses the benefits and risks for franchisors and franchisees that use social media as a tool to promote their businesses and reach out to customers and other influential leaders of public opinion.