Looking to buy or sell a franchise?
As a business sector, franchising has been rapidly growing in Australia over the last two decades. On a per capita basis, we are now the most widely franchised nation in the world.
However, selling or buying a franchise is not easy. Franchising is a specialised and unique area of law, with a number of complex regulations that impact franchisee transactions. This is why it is crucial to engage an experienced franchise lawyer before you buy or sell a franchise. We can help you navigate this area of law and ensure that your transaction leaves you in the best possible position.
What do I need to consider?
Although the franchising sector is growing, many franchises fail because the parties did not seek good legal advice from the outset. Large numbers of franchise owners have had costly disputes with their parent company, and most of these have resulted in legal action. Many franchisees have also walked away from their business due to insurmountable issues.
Moreover, many franchisees enter the market without completely understanding the process attached to running a franchise (eg sales and purchases, due diligence and managing employees, to name a few). Your franchise lawyers can help you understand the processes attached not only to buying or selling a franchise, but also the finer details of how franchising works in practice.
The best way to protect yourself against the risk of dispute or business failure is to seek legal advice from the beginning.
What do I need to know before buying a franchise?
Due diligence is essential. While it is important for you to do your own research before buying a franchise, it is even more important to engage a lawyer who can perform your due diligence for you and present you with the pros and cons of your proposed transaction.
You should also be aware that all franchisors directly or indirectly collect payments from franchisees for the right to use their brand and participate in their systems. Franchisees are also generally required to pay ongoing fees for franchise support, which may be a fixed monthly amount or calculated as a percentage of turnover. Additionally, a further fixed or percentage of turnover fee may be applied to cover the costs of group marketing.
Your lawyer can help you understand the fee structure and advise you on whether it is fair. They can also raise issues with you before you buy a franchise, and can help you confirm that you have chosen a franchise that is right for you.
Why choose Slater and Gordon?
Our lawyers can assist on all franchise matters, for both franchisees and franchisors.
Our clients include anyone from individuals looking to start their first business to large Australian franchises. We understand the huge workload that comes with running your own business, and our aim is always to take care of the legal aspects of franchisee transactions so you can focus on the business itself.
By choosing us, we promise to:
- Negotiate your best outcome
- Draft or review all relevant documentation (including franchise agreements, disclosure documents, franchisee heads of agreement etc), tailored to your circumstances
- Minimise stress
- Conduct franchise due diligence on your behalf
- Manage disputes and litigation
- Ensure your intellectual property is secured
- Guide you through the process, ensuring your interests are protected and your risks minimised