This is an online course for soon to be franchise owners, franchise company employees, franchisees and consultants. Sponsored by the International Franchise Association (IFA), it offers a comprehensive introduction into franchising for individuals considering purchasing a franchise. This course covers a wide variety of topics including franchising laws & regulations and the advantages and disadvantages of franchising.
Franchise Sales Compliance
Another online course offered by the International Franchise Association. It is primarily for individuals involved in the franchise sales and distribution process such as: franchise executives, managers, compliance officers, attorneys, paralegals, franchise brokers and consultants. Some of the topics covered are franchise disclosure laws, disclosure requirements, and franchise registration process.
The best advocate for you, in a franchise dispute, is a franchise attorney. As franchising is a highly specialized field, you should hire an attorney with experience representing franchisors or franchisees.
Hiring an attorney should not be done without research. Visit www.findlegalhelp.org a site sponsored by the American Bar Association, to learn about referral services and issues you should raise when consulting with a lawyer. Do not feel restrained from hiring a lawyer whose offices are out-of-state, provided he or she is licensed to practice law in New York or will retain local counsel to litigate in New York. Another source for examining an attorney's credentials is www.lawyers.com. The franchise associations below may also provide referrals to experienced franchise attorneys.
Franchise Registration Forms
Franchise Registration Information Sheet Commentary On 2008 Franchise Registration And Disclosure Guidelines
FTC Compliance Guides
Amended Franchise Rule FAQ's
North American Securities Administrators Association, Inc.'s 2008 Franchise Registration and Disclosure Guidelines
State Cover Page
Uniform Franchise Registration Application with Certification
Franchisor's Costs and Source of Funds
Uniform Consent to Service of Process
Franchise Seller Disclosure Form
Guarantee of Performance
Franchise Broker Registration Form
Franchise Laws & Regulations
New York State Franchise Act
New York Franchise Regulations
Federal Trade Commission Franchise Rule (16 CFR Parts 436 and 437)
Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 41-58, as amended)
FTC INFORMAL STAFF ADVISORY OPINION 97-2 regarding delivery of a disclosure document via computer diskette
NYS Department of State, Division of Corporations, State Records and Forms
Trademark and Patent Information Register and search for trademarks and patents registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
State trademark agencies can be found at State Trademark Information
Franchise-Related Complaint Form
Alternative Dispute Resolution
Litigation usually signals the end of a business relationship, but the franchise community has increasingly sought the use of mediation to solve franchise disputes. Franchisees who do not want to resort to litigation and believe they can still work with their franchisors should consider Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). While ADR is less expensive than litigation, franchisees should understand that the result of ADR is a mutually agreed upon resolution, not a finding of fact by a judge, and therefore is not legally binding on either party. One organization that provides franchise mediation program services is the International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution. Information for that program www.cpradr.org/ClausesRules/FranchiseRules/FranchiseMediationProgram/tabid/304/Default.aspx
International Franchise Association's (IFA) Ombudsman Program
This organization has an ombudsman who provides confidential listing, consulting and facilitating services to assist in resolving disputes. The initial call is free to all IFA members and their franchisees. www.ifaresolve.com/intro.htm
American Association of Franchisees & Dealers (AAF&D)
A national non-profit trade association representing the rights of franchisees throughout the U.S. whose mission is to bring fairness to franchising.
American Franchise Association (AFA)
A representative organization for franchisees which advocates changing the rules and laws governing franchising on both the state and national levels.
Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA)
Provides ongoing professional education, about the hospitality industry, to its members so that they may become better managers and more successful business people.
Site is designed to help small businesses navigate and understand applicable federal and state rules and regulations.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
Complaint hotline telephone number (877) 382-4357.
This organization regulates franchises on a federal level.
International Franchise Association (IFA)
This organization seeks to put franchisors, franchisees, and suppliers under one umbrella to facilitate effective business transactions among those member groups.
New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) Franchise Law Committee
This committee was formed to provide a forum for those attorneys who actively practiced franchise laws and those who are interested in such laws. It seek to inform the general public to the fact that there is a large number of knowledgeable attorneys within the State who practice in this field. This site contains many interesting articles on franchising written by committee members.
North American Securities Administrators Association, Inc. (NASAA)
This site contains a directory of how to contact your State's franchise regulators.
Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE)
The SCORE Association (Service Corps of Retired Executives) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to entrepreneur education and the formation, growth and success of small business nationwide. Working and retired executives and business owners donate their time and expertise as volunteer business counselors and provide confidential counseling and mentoring free of charge.
State of California
California's Franchise Web page
California's Electronic Access To Franchise Filings www.corp.ca.gov/Publications/pdf/TO_About_DOC_Trifold_web.pdf
State of Illinois
Illinois's Franchise Web page
State of Maryland
Maryland's Securities Web page containing links to Franchising Resources
State of Minnesota
Minnesota Department of Commerce's Franchise Webpage
Minnesota's Electronic Access To Franchise Filings
State of Rhode Island
Department of Business Regulation Franchising Web page
State of Virginia
Virgnia's State Corporation Commission Franchising Web page
State of Washington
Washington State Department of Financial Institutions Franchising Web page