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Restaurants

Extensive litigation experience in all
types of restaurant franchise and
commercial disputes

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In the restaurant industry, franchise disputes
frequently come up in the following areas:

  • Renovation requirements
  • Point of Sales (POS) upgrades
  • Designated suppliers, food costs and supplier rebates
  • Requirements to use online delivery apps and calculation of royalties
  • Lease renewal terms
  • Compliance with and changes to operating standards

Who We Help

We advise restaurant franchisors and franchisees, including master franchisees, multi-unit franchisees and area developers, about their rights and obligations. We provide representation as litigation and arbitration counsel in franchise and commercial disputes involving court litigation, private arbitration and mediation.

How We Help

We have extensive litigation experience in common areas where
disputes typically come up, including, but not limited to:

  • Territory disputes
  • Restrictions against competition
  • Resales
  • Changes to the franchise system
  • Designated suppliers
  • Approved products
  • Sharing of rebates and discounts from suppliers
  • Compliance with health and food standards
  • Food safety issues
  • Rent
  • Adherence to the operating manual
  • Terminations
  • De-identification
  • Customer lists
  • And more

Additional Restaurant Franchise Law Services

We also provide representation in franchise negotiations and franchise sales and transfers, including, among others, drafting:

  • Franchise Disclosure Documents
  • Franchise Agreements
  • Master Franchise Agreements

Restaurant Industry
Segments We Serve

We help restaurant franchisors and franchisees in the following sectors, among others:

  • QSR (Quick Service Restaurant)
  • Casual Dining
  • Bars
  • Ice Cream
  • Coffee
  • Pop Ups

Law Works - Important
Restaurant Industry Cases

Noteworthy restaurant franchise court decisions where we acted as counsel include the following:

Circumventing Disclosure Requirements

Bekah v. Three for One Pizza (2003)

Case Synopsis

The franchisor required that the franchisee purchase a store through a conventional purchase and sale agreement before entering into a franchise agreement. By structuring the transaction this way, the franchisor attempted to circumvent the disclosure requirements that the Act imposes on franchisors. This court decision was among the earliest reported franchise disclosure decisions under the Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000.

Class Action Rescission Claim

Al-Harazi v. Quiznos Canada Restaurant Corporation (2007)

Case Synopsis

Ben Hanuka represented a group of approximately 200 franchisees in a class action suit against Quiznos after they signed a franchise agreement but never received a location for their restaurant. Quiznos did not finalize details about the lease and construction requirements of the location and the franchise agreement and related franchise document contained conflicting information. This was the first Ontario class action based on the disclosure requirements in the Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000. The class action resulted in a settlement of partial refunds of the franchise fee to different groups of the class members.

Materially Deficient Disclosure Document

Sovereignty Investment Holdings, Inc. v. 9127-6907 Quebec Inc. (2008)

Case Synopsis

The disclosure document did not contain key required components under the Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000. The franchisee brought a court action to cancel (rescind) the franchise purchase and receive compensation. This is an influential Ontario court decision under the Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000.

Misrepresentation and Bad-faith Conduct in a Termination

Sirianni v. Country Style (2012)

Case Synopsis

Franchisees renewed the franchise agreement, unaware that the landlord and Country Style were involved in a significant dispute about the renewal of the head lease, and that Country Style had agreed with the landlord to terminate the lease. This is an influential Ontario court decision under the Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000.

Non-compliance with Franchisor’s Certificate Requirements and Misrepresentations

2483038 Ontario Inc. v. 2082100 Ontario Inc. (2020)

Case Synopsis

Law Works represented the franchisor in this case, defending against a rescission claim brought by a franchisee. The Ontario Superior Court granted judgment for rescission to the franchisee against the franchisor and the franchisor’s associates on the basis that the franchisor’s certificate in the franchise disclosure document did not contain the required signature of the franchisor’s officer and director, and that another section in the franchise disclosure document, signed by the franchisor, contained misrepresentations.

Related Resources

  • Franchisee|
  • Franchisor|
  • Lawyer|

‘Effecting’ the Transfer for a Franchise: What does it mean?

Author: Anthony Pugh, Student-at-Law, Law Works P.C. Editor: Ben Hanuka In franchise resales, i.e., transferring a franchised business by a franchisee seller to a prospective franchisee buyer,...

Law Works Dispute Resolution Law Firm

  • Franchisee|
  • Franchisor|
  • Lawyer|

Alberta Court Denies Statutory Damages Because No Signed Franchise Agreements

In 1384334 Alberta Ltd v Buster’s Pizza Donair & Pasta Enterprises Ltd., a June 16, 2020, the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta found that the parties had never agreed on the essential...

Law Works Dispute Resolution Law Firm

  • Franchisee|
  • Franchisor|
  • Lawyer|

Alberta Court Of Queen’s Bench Re-affirms The Need For Full Disclosure

Author: Gleb Matsuhansky, Student-at-Law, Law Works P.C. Editorial Committee: Law Works P.C. Editor: Ben Hanuka Overview On March 24, 2016, the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench released...

Law Works Dispute Resolution Law Firm