Presented by Carly Cohen (Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP) and Stephanie Sugar (McCarthy Tetrault).
The franchise relationship is unique, and in many ways like a marriage. At the outset, all parties are hopeful and excited for a long-term commitment. Unfortunately, however, many franchise relationships end. When they do, it can often be an upsetting and emotional time for all involved and has the potential to impact many parties other than the franchisor and the franchisee. Typically, it is in everyone’s best interest to work towards the least acrimonious and mutually beneficial exit strategy. The ability to effect a smooth transition, in the end, will depend on how the contractual relationship has been set up at the beginning. It will also depend on the strategies a franchisor can employ to mitigate risk at the end of the relationship.
This session will focus on steps that parties can take to “uncouple”, including practical elements to work towards a smooth transition and exit strategy; key terms in the agreement – drafting default provisions; reasonable restrictive covenants and transition clauses; strategies for mutual termination – considering the availability of waivers, hold-overs, and effecting the sale of the franchised location; and risk mitigation – practical considerations to minimize liability and avoid litigation.