What is a Franchise Dispute Lawyer?
Franchise dispute lawyers represent clients in franchise-related arbitration and litigation. An experienced franchise dispute lawyer should be intimately familiar with both the general and franchise-specific legal issues involved in franchisor-franchisee disputes, and should be able to provide forward-thinking representation focused on securing a favorable resolution as cost-effectively as possible. An experienced franchise dispute lawyer should also be able (and willing) to tell his or her client when pursuing a dispute may not ultimately be in the client’s best interests.
Services Offered by Franchise Dispute Attorneys
Generally speaking, franchise dispute attorneys represent parties in mediation, arbitration and litigation involving renewals, terminations, franchise agreement violations, franchise law violations and other franchise-related issues. They generally also represent their clients in attempts at informal dispute-resolution, which typically precede the filing of an arbitration demand or civil complaint.
While arbitration is typically more straightforward and less costly than litigation, both methods of dispute resolution require careful strategizing and adherence to a complex set of rules and procedures. As a result, it is essential that you choose an attorney who has a proven track record of providing successful representation.
Do I want a franchise dispute lawyer who represents franchisors?
As a franchisee, you do not want to choose a franchise dispute lawyer who also represents franchisors. Most often, the bulk of these lawyers’ practices is devoted to representing franchisors, and conflicts of interest can arise when these lawyers are forced to take opposing positions while representing franchisors and franchisees in similar types of cases. You don’t have to worry about these types of issues when you choose a franchisee-only attorney.
Do I want a franchise dispute lawyer who also handles transactions?
On the other hand, it can be extremely beneficial to choose a lawyer who represents franchisees in both transactions and disputes. These lawyers must know franchise law inside and out, and must stay up-to-date on all of the latest legal developments affecting the enforceability of franchise agreements.
Do all franchise dispute lawyers handle arbitration and litigation?
No. Some lawyers will arbitrate cases because arbitration is less complex and less time-consuming than litigation, but they will not try cases in court. Other lawyers devote their entire practices to litigation, and are not comfortable enough with the arbitration process to represent clients in these alternative dispute resolution proceedings. However, since the question of whether to arbitrate can itself often lead to litigation, most franchisees will be well-served to choose an attorney who regularly represents clients in both arbitration and litigation.
Hire a Franchise Lawyer as Soon as Possible
You do not want to wait too long to speak with an attorney about your dispute. Delays can create additional challenges (especially if your franchisor attempts to terminate your franchise agreement in the interim), and many franchise agreements include “limitations” clauses that only provide franchisees with a limited window within which they can file their claims. As a result, if you are facing a dispute – or even a potential dispute – with your franchisor, you should speak with a lawyer as soon as possible.
Contact a Franchise Dispute Attorney at the Goldstein Law Firm
If you would like to speak with an experienced attorney about your franchise dispute, contact the national law offices of the Goldstein Law Firm. For a free initial consultation, call 202-293-3947 or submit our contact form now.