California Hearing on Fair Franchising on Tuesday, Act Now!
California State Assemblyman Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael) recently introduced AB 2305, The Level Playing Field for Small Business Act of 2012. This important piece of legislation helps protect franchisees from unfair business practices and enables them to continue creating jobs, contribute to communities and help grow local economies.
On April 17, the Judicial Committee of the California Assembly will hold a hearing on the Level Playing Field Act. Click here for a draft letter to fax Assemblyman Huffman in support of his bill.
Because most agreements are non-negotiable, franchisees are presented with “take it or leave it” situations where they must sign the contract or walk away from the business entirely. As such, franchisees are forced into signing unbalanced agreements wherein ownership of their business, control of day-to-day activities and rights to seek judicial review are placed in jeopardy.
The Level Playing Field Act addresses a number of franchisee concerns. Specifically, the Act requires the inclusion of the following provisions in future franchise agreements:
- Extended notice and cure periods for “good cause” terminations
- Franchisor assurances of good faith
- Additional dispute resolution avenues
- Approval of transfers upon reasonable qualifications
- Automatic renewal of franchise agreement absent material breach
- Penalties for false or deceptive claims in association with the sale of a franchise
- Limitation on changes to agreement at renewal
Franchisors are in the process of using their resources to defeat this legislation. The best action for franchise owners, whether in California or not, is to immediately voice support for this important legislation. Please forward this to your franchisee colleagues as soon as possible. We need as many letters as possible to advance this important piece of legislation.
Click here for a draft letter that you can modify and fax. We strongly suggest the use of company letterhead and your own words in writing the support letter. Please be sure to FAX the letter to Assemblyman Jared Huffman at 916.319.2106 no later than this Friday, April 13. (You can also convert your letter to a .pdf and email it directly to Andi.Liebenbaum@asm.ca.gov)
It is crucial that the Act passes out of the Assembly Judiciary Committee on April 17. Please send your letter in support of AB 2305 today.
Thank you in advance for your immediate action on this important issue.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email the Coalition of Franchisee Associations or call me at (202) 416-0270.