Starting or Buying a Franchise
Whether you are starting a new franchise location or purchasing an existing franchise, it is essential to work with an experienced franchise attorney. If you are starting a new location, you need to make sure you understand the Franchise Disclosure Document, negotiate the time periods you have to open your franchise, the scope of your protected territory, liability upon early termination, renewal rights, your rights if you do default, and rights of first refusal for other locations. These, along with fees and interest rates, can and should be negotaited with the franchisor.
If you are purchasing an existing franchise, you can negotiate all of the above but you also need assistance reviewing the purcahse agreement to ensure you have adequate time to complete your due dilligence as well as recieve a refund of you deposit if you run into issue in due dilligence or obtaining funding. You do not have to accept the seller's franchise agreement as it is written and can negotiate a new agreement with the franchisor on your own. It is vital to have an experienced franchise attorney review these documents before you sign them as many clients come to us after the fact which is typically too late.