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  • Joint Employer Attacks Continue to Threaten Franchise Model

    09/13/2017 / Susan Tegt

    This summer, the franchising community scored a victory in the continuing joint employer battle when the Department of Labor rolled back its Obama-era guidance creating employer liability for workplace violations if the employer exercised indirect control over the workplace. As we celebrate the victory of the return of the DOL’s “direct control” standard, we should remain only cautiously optimistic in the wake of several recent federal court decisions highlighting the continued joint employer threats to the franchise model.

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  • Obligations to Perform in Good Faith Do Not Override Express Terms

    09/13/2017 / Henry Pfutzenreuter

    Claims for breach of the obligation to perform in good faith, whether express or implied, continue to be popular among franchisees who choose to litigate their disputes. However, when the franchise agreements are drafted to address the key issues that are in dispute, these claims fail as courts continue to reject arguments that the obligation of good faith overrides the franchise agreement’s clearly defined, express terms. Two U.S. Court of Appeals cases from this summer illustrate how franchisors were able to overcome these claims, and how enterprising franchisors might even further improve their odds in the future.

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  • Spotlight: Ed Driscoll

    09/13/2017 / Chuck Modell

    In 1971, Governor Wendell Anderson appointed Edward J. Driscoll as Minnesota’s Commissioner of Securities and Chairman of the Minnesota Commerce Commission, where he was responsible for the regulation of financial service industries, including insurance, state chartered banks, securities, and real estate.

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  • LinkedIn Posts May Violate Former Employee’s Non-Solicitation Agreement

    09/05/2017 / Andrew D. Moran

    In a favorable decision for employers seeking to enforce non-solicitation restrictions against former employees, the Federal District Court for the District of Minnesota recently granted a preliminary injunction preventing a former employee from soliciting customers by posting on LinkedIn in violation of her non-solicitation agreement with her prior employer.

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  • New EEO-1 Report on Hold

    09/05/2017 / Daniel J. Ballintine

    On August 29, 2017, the EEOC reported that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is going to review the new, proposed EEO-1 form and, accordingly, the old EEO-1 form should be used for the 2017 year.

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  • Texas Court Strikes Down Department of Labor Overtime Rule

    09/05/2017 / Daniel J. Ballintine and Nic S. Puechner

    In November 2016, a federal judge in the Eastern District of Texas issued a nationwide injunction blocking a Department of Labor (DOL) regulation, originally scheduled to take effect on December 1, 2016. On August 31, 2017, that same court issued a summary judgment order which fully invalidated the regulation.

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  • Patent Infringement Cases Will be Closer to Home

    06/14/2017 / Craig Lervick

    As has been widely observed over the past several years, certain locations have become preferred venues for patent infringement suits. Naturally, any plaintiff looking to file such a suit will seek a venue that is most likely to produce a favorable result. Based on a recent Supreme Court decision, infringement cases will likely spread out across the country.

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  • Patent Owners Cannot Use Patent law to Enforce Post-Sale Restrictions on Purchasers

    06/14/2017 / Katie Muller

    A patent owner generally has the right to exclude others from making, using, selling, offering for sale or importing the patented invention. However, these rights cease to exist with respect to a patented product when the "patentee" sells the product to a purchaser. This same understanding was recently confirmed by the US Supreme Court in Impression Products v. Lexmark International, Inc.

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  • What the DOL’s Rescission of Obama Administration Guidance Means for Employers

    06/11/2017 / Phyllis Karasov

    On June 7, 2017, U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Alex Acosta announced that the DOL would withdraw two significant guidance documents issued by the DOL.

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  • Art that Stands Alone

    05/31/2017 / James Quinn

    On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court handed down a decision about a potentially significant copyright issue. In the Varsity Brands case the court said that various designs consisting of things like stripes and chevrons on a cheerleading uniform were eligible for copyright protection.

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  • Enforcing Data Security Policies With External Service Providers

    05/31/2017 / James Quinn

    In an article published in the May 7 edition of The New York Times, Nicole Perlroth reported on data security breaches that affected big names like Lady GaGa, Netflix, and Lockheed Martin. In the case of Lady GaGa and Netflix, pre-release copies of songs and TV episodes were taken and distributed by hackers.

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  • NASAA Adopts New Rules on Financial Performance Representations

    05/17/2017 / Chuck Modell, Joe Fittante and Sawan Patel

    On May 8, 2017, the North American Securities Administrators Association, Inc. (“NASAA”) formally issued new guidance, the NASAA FPR Commentary (the “Commentary”), to clarify what constitutes a reasonable basis in making a financial performance representation (“FPR”)—with specific guidance for a variety of common FPRs that are made in Item 19 of Franchise Disclosure Documents (“FDDs”). The Commentary provides welcome guidance to franchisors that have been reluctant to include FPRs in their FDDs, or whose efforts to include FPRs have been rebuffed by state franchise examiners, but it will ultimately require all franchisors that currently include an FPR in their FDD to revise their FPR.

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  • Sick and Safe Time Ordinances Cause Concern in the Franchise Community

    05/03/2017 / Susan Tegt

    State and local governments around the country are passing legislation that continues to attack the franchise business model.

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  • Eighth Circuit Holds That Franchisor Failed to Establish Willful Infringement

    05/03/2017 / Nic Puechner

    Franchisors must demonstrate at least minimal willful infringement when seeking to recover monetary damages under the Lanham Act, even when the defendants fail to defend the claim.

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  • Minneapolis, St. Paul Issue Sick and Safe Time Rules

    04/18/2017 / Phyllis Karasov and Nic Puechner

    Minneapolis and St. Paul each issued rules and a collection of frequently asked questions (FAQ) April 1, further clarifying the implementation of each city’s sick and safe time ordinance. The ordinances, which guarantee paid earned sick and safe time for employees working within the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, are scheduled to go into effect on July 1, 2017.

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  • Exemptions and Exclusions Under Federal and State Franchise Laws

    04/04/2017 / Sawan Patel

    Sawan Patel co-authored the Minnesota chapter in the American Bar Association’s book on franchise registration and disclosure exemptions, “Exemptions and Exclusions Under Federal and State Franchise Laws,” published in 2017.

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  • Do Your Commercial Real Estate Taxes Seem Too High?

    04/03/2017 / Tim Rye

    Minnesota's deadline to file an appeal for taxes payable in 2017 is April 30, 2017, which means it's time for commercial property owners, tenants, managers, etc., to decide if a tax appeal is appropriate. Here are a few frequently asked questions.

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  • Individuals, Businesses Must be Justly Compensated When Property is Taken for Public Projects

    04/03/2017 / Gary Van Cleve

    When the government takes private property for a public project, both the United States and the Minnesota Constitutions require that just compensation be paid for the taking.

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  • SBA Announces Valentine’s Day Changes to SBA Loan Program for Franchises

    02/15/2017 / Charles Modell and Sawan Patel

    Yesterday afternoon, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced temporary changes to the recently revised franchise review process for its 7(a) and 504 loan programs. The changes are intended to facilitate SBA loans for franchisees of franchise systems who have previously been on the SBA’s Franchise Registry or otherwise negotiated an SBA Addendum to their franchise agreements.

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  • 2017 Checklist for Franchisors: Updating Your FDD


    Chuck Modell's article, "2017 Checklist for Franchisors: Updating Your FDD" was published by the International Franchise Association on Jan. 29, 2017.

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Showing Results 21 - 40 of 622