California Lawyers Association

Business Law Franchise Law Committee

Updates from the BLS Franchise Law Committee

With the economic turmoil of the Great Recession seemingly in America’s rearview mirror, many lawmakers have turned their attention to raising the pay and improving the job conditions for the minimum wage employees in this country.  The impasse in Washington over President Barack Obama’s push to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 has left local municipalities to evaluate the needs of the minimum wage workers in their communities. This has resulted in significant increases to minimum wage… Read more
The California Franchise Relations Act (“CFRA”) was enacted by the California legislature to govern the ongoing relationships between franchisors and franchisees in an effort to prevent unfair practices in the termination, renewal or transfer of a franchise.  (Bus. & Prof. Code Sec. 20000 et seq.)  Included in this bundle of CFRA protections is the rule precluding franchisors from unilaterally terminating franchise agreements prior to the expiration of their term, without good cause and providing the franchisee an opportunity to cure.… Read more
Franchise and Distribution Law is one of a handful of legal specialties certified by the California State Bar. Franchising is recognized as a specialty largely in part to the complexities and nuances within state and federal franchise laws – most notably, California’s Franchise Investment Law and Franchise Relations Act. Notwithstanding this recognized area of legal specialization, lawyers less familiar with franchising are still retained to litigate disputes arising out of franchise or quasi-franchise relationships. Too often, this lack of familiarity… Read more
For decades, it has been commonplace for non-franchise businesses using a quasi-franchise business model (i.e., any business format license) to distinguish themselves from franchisors in order to avoid the arduous California franchise laws. A recent California district court case suggests that this may be changing – at least when confronted with employee misclassification claims. In Ambrose v. Avis Rent a Car Sys. (Ambrose v. Avis Rent a Car Sys., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 170406 (C.D. Cal. Dec. 8, 2014)), the defendants –… Read more
The Business Law Section is compiling the complete Interpretive Opinions concerning franchise issues from the State of California Department of Corporations. Read more
State of California Department of Corporations Willie R. Barnes, Commissioner In reply refer to: File No. _____ This letter is not an Interpretive Opinion for the reasons stated below. Mr. Victor D. AdamoAttorney at LawNederlander, Dodge & McCauley, P.C.1930 Buhl BuildingDetroit, Michigan 48226 Dear Mr. Adamo: The request for an interpretive opinion contained in your letter dated January 19, 1979, as supplemented by your letter dated February 27, 1979, has been considered by the Commissioner. Your letters raise the question whether… Read more

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