Franchise & Distribution Law Update - July/August 2008

08/07/2008           Attorneys            Firm News             Events


Chair of the Franchise and Distribution Law Group


Welcome to the first edition of Larkin Hoffman’s e-news Franchise and Distribution Law Update. Our goal in preparing this publication is to inform our clients and friends of important developments in franchising and in franchise and distribution law. At the same time, we know that you receive many emails from many sources, purporting to provide you information you need for your business. We have therefore chosen a format that highlights the subjects covered and provides very basic information as to the issues addressed, so that you can decide, without having to read lengthy information, whether or not the information is of interest to you. To the extent you want more information on a particular subject, you can click on the attached link. Even then, however, we tried to summarize issues whenever possible, so you can obtain maximum benefit from this newsletter with a minimum investment of time. 



Recently Published:


Klaus Publishes Article on Confirming Arbitration Awards in Federal Court


Due to mandatory arbitration clauses commonly included in franchise agreements, most franchise disputes are decided in arbitration. However, in many cases, arbitration may not fully resolve the dispute, and a party to the arbitration may need to subsequently file a motion to compel or vacate the arbitration award.


In the April 2008 edition of The Franchise Lawyer, Cyndi Klaus discusses the jurisdictional challenges related to arbitration awards, and examines whether a motion to compel or vacate should be filed in state or federal court.



Bauer and Modell Publish Article Entitled “Stretching the Truth, and Other Advertising Pitfalls”


In a time when businesses are under increasing pressure to generate new business and increase or even just maintain earnings, many businesses are creating advertising and advertising campaigns to generate additional sales. When advertising, hiring an advertising agency, or advising clients regarding their advertising plans, several legal issues should be kept in mind.


Meredith Bauer and Chuck Modell examine the inherent legal pitfalls in advertising and its various forms in the May 2008 edition of the Advertising Compliance Service Bulletin.



Klaus Publishes Article Regarding Non-Compete Provisions in Franchise Agreements


In the July 2008 issue of the Law Journal newsletter – Franchising Business & Law Alert, Cyndi Klaus discusses a franchisor’s non-compete agreement which was upheld in New Jersey.





Fittante Plans Annual Forum on Franchising


Each October, members of the American Bar Association Forum on Franchising gather together for the Annual Forum, which offers practical and educational programs, as well as networking opportunities within the franchising community. 


For more information on attending the 31st Annual Forum 

contact Joe Fittante, 952-896-3256,



Fittante, Klaus and Modell Speak at the International Franchise Legal Symposium 


Joe Fittante, Cyndi Klaus and Chuck Modell were each featured as a presenter at the annual International Franchise Association's Legal Symposium on May 12, 2008, in Washington, D.C. Joe Fittante moderated a roundtable discussion regarding "Challenges in the Franchise Disclosure Document Preparation Process," and Cyndi Klaus also presented on the topic of "Litigating Encroachment and Wrongful Termination Issues."


As part of a featured program at the event, Chuck Modell was selected as one of three national experts on franchise law to discuss his experiences on behalf of clients in preparing and filing franchise disclosure documents under the amended FTC Franchise Rule now in effect.



Fittante Appointed to Chair MSBA Franchise Committee


Joe Fittante was recently appointed to chair the Franchise Committee of the Business Law Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association. The committee is concerned with issues relating to systems for distribution of goods and services, particularly through franchised businesses and business opportunities, as well as the interests of the legal and business community involved in franchising.


Honors and Awards:


Two Larkin Hoffman Franchise Attorneys Named As 2008 Minnesota Super Lawyers


Joe Fittante and Chuck Modell of Larkin Hoffman’s Franchise and Distribution practice group have been named 2008 Minnesota Super Lawyers in the June 2008 issue of Minnesota Law and Politics magazine.  Super Lawyers is a listing of attorneys who have achieved a high degree of professional achievement and peer recognition.  The published list of  Minnesota Super Lawyers represent only 5% of the total lawyers in Minnesota. 


In addition to being named a 2008 Minnesota Super Lawyer, Chuck Modell was honored as a 2008 Top 100 Lawyer in Minnesota by Law and Politics magazine.  This list is comprised of the lawyers who received the highest point totals in the 2008 Minnesota Super Lawyers nomination, evaluation and peer review process.  Chuck Modell is the only transactional franchise attorney to be included as a 2008 Top 100 Lawyer.  



Modell and Fittante Named as 2008 Franchise Times’ Legal Eagles


Chuck Modell and Joe Fittante were both included on the 2008 Franchise Times’ list of “Legal Eagles,” published in the April 2008 issue of Franchise Times Magazine.  Those honored as “Legal Eagles” are the legal practitioners that “peers and clients alike think are the movers and shakers in the franchise bar.”  The list is comprised of 124 lawyers nationwide.

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This alert is provided as a service to our clients and firm associates.  While the information provided in this publication is believed to be accurate, it is general in nature and should not be construed as legal advice.

July/August 2008





Duty to Mitigate Business Dispute Upheld

Mediation has become a favorite tool of many enlightened businesses to help both the franchisor, and their franchisees, avoid the debilitating costs of litigating disputes.


Amended FTC Rule Imposes New Quarterly Updating Requirement

In May of this year, the Federal Trade Commission published the long-awaited Compliance Guide to assist franchisors in understanding and interpreting the Commission’s Amended Franchise Rule.                         



For more information about Larkin Hoffman’s Franchise and Distribution practice group, visit our homepage by clicking here. 


Contact our Larkin Hoffman Franchise and Distribution group members:


Email 952.896.3341


Email 952.896.3256


Email 952.896.1578


Email 952.896.3280


Cynthia M Klaus

Email 952.896.3392


Email 952.896.1572


Pamela N Merkle

Email 952.896.3337


Meredith A Bauer

Email 952.896.3263


Andrew F Perrin

Email 952.896.3394


Edward J Driscoll

Email 952.896.3235