Franchise Law Update Blog

John is the editor of the firm's Franchise Law Update blog, which highlights not only the regulatory aspects of franchising but also diverse topics such as business finance, employment, litigation and the protection of intellectual property including trademarks and copyrights.

Recent Blog Posts

  • Key Data Privacy Considerations for Vendor Management Key takeaways from my partner, Odia Kagan’s recent presentation titled “Service Providers v. Data Processors: What Should Your Agreement Address?”  with Lexology and Exterra: As the “business,” the “buck stops with you” as it relates to liability to the individual customer respecting processing their data. Between you and your service provider/data processor, you can and should impose liability for tasks that you are engaging them to do for you. To comply with your legal obligations under the General Data Protection Regulation, California Consumer... More
  • Pennsylvania: “Green” Reopening Phase Does Not Mean “GO!” If you’re in the Keystone State, you know that many counties will be moving into the Yellow and Green Phases of Governor Wolf’s Reopening Pennsylvania Plan on June 5th. This blog previously covered the requirements of the Yellow Phase.  But what does “Green” mean? One thing that “Green” definitely does not mean in is “Go”. That said, there a number of broader re-openings in the Green Phase as opposed to the Yellow Phase: Continued telework is “strongly encouraged”. Businesses with in-person operations must... More
  • Memorial Day 2020 Longtime readers of this blog know that Memorial Day is special around here. Memorial Day, of course, is the day established by General John A. Logan, Commander in Chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, when we pause to remember, and honor, those who gave, as Abraham Lincoln so eloquently expressed it, the last full measure of devotion for their country. In this vein, not too long ago, the podcast 99% Invisible did a fascinating report on the history of,... More
  • What the Heck Does Yellow Phase Re-Opening Mean (Pennsylvania)? (Updated 5/31/20) Yellow traffic light with yellow color, 3D rendering isolated on white background Let’s posit you have operations in Pennsylvania, where I live, and those operations are in located in one of the Northcentral or Northwestern Counties (including Erie) that went to Yellow Phase on May 8th, one of the Southwestern Counties (including Pittsburgh) that went to Yellow Phase on May 15th, or one of the many counties going to Yellow Phase on June 5th. Now you’re probably trying to figure out... More
  • THE BALLAD OF THE HARE AND THE TORTOISE: FASB delays ASC 606 Surprise! On April 8th, FASB delayed for one year the implementation of the new ASC 606 revenue recognition standards for private companies,[1] citing the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to delaying implementation, FASB indicated it would investigate “how to reduce implementation costs relating to applying Topic 606 to initial franchise fees.” While the connection between implementation of the amended standard and the pandemic may be inexplicable, FASB’s reconsideration of ASC 606 is welcome news to franchisors. The delay does create a bit... More
  • SCOTUS Ends Willfulness Precondition for Profits in Trademark Cases In a BIG win for brand owners, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that the plaintiff in a trademark infringement claim is not required to prove willfulness when seeking an award of a defendant’s profits under Section 1117(a) of the Lanham Act. The high court’s unanimous decision in Romag Fasteners, Inc. v. Fossil Group Inc. settles a long-time split among the federal circuit courts regarding whether proof of a defendant’s willfulness is a prerequisite to securing a disgorgement of profits. The Third, Fourth, Fifth, Seventh... More
  • A Rough Roll-Out for Payroll Protection Loans Need and speed can be a dangerous combination. Just ask Peter “Maverick” Mitchell. That’s a lesson that lenders and borrowers are discovering with CARES Act Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loans. The CARES Act’s PPP provisions promise accessible liquidity support for franchises and small businesses. Indeed, Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said PPP or Emergency Income Disaster Loans and Grants might be paid the day after applying. The early reality is proving to be far more challenging. The overarching issue is the urgent need... More
  • (Some) Good News: SBA Guidance Mostly Exempts Franchises from Affiliation Rules for Paycheck Protection Act Loans On April 3, 2020, banks commenced taking applications for the Small Business Administration’s (“SBA”),  Paycheck Protection Program (the “PPP”) loans, as provided in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act aka the CARES Act.  At the highest level, the PPP allows eligible businesses to borrow up to 2.5x average monthly payroll costs from the last year, subject to a $10 million cap. The SBA issued guidance with respect to the Affiliation Rules applicable to the PPP.  Affiliation determinations are significant... More
  • The CARES Act and Small Business Administration Loans There’s a big insurance company that uses the tag line:  Life Comes at You Fast.  I sure feel that life is coming at me very fast in this Brave New World of COVID-19.  Congress seems to agree, as it worked in record time to enact the $2 Trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security or CARES Act.  We provided a quick overview of the immense new law on Friday. The Act provides financial support for small businesses and targeted sectors of... More
  • CARES Act: An Initial Review As the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak evolve, we here at Fox Rothschild continue to update our Coronavirus Resource Center. Today, we’ve been hard at work reviewing the historic CARES Act and its over 800 pages of provisions. Learn what’s contained in the $2.2 trillion CARES Act stimulus package and how it will affect businesses and individuals in an alert by Lauren McKenna. Diana Palecek and Paul Edelberg provide an overview of the financial bailout options for businesses impacted by the pandemic via... More