Expertise Detail

Franchise & Distribution

Consumer & Retail Advisor  Consumer & Retail Advisor Blog

Our National Franchise & Distribution team advises franchise systems in Canada and the US in all areas of the law that affect franchise and distribution networks. Our national platform and full-service, multi-disciplinary practice allows us to leverage expertise in complimentary practice areas to provide clients that operate as franchise systems with fully integrated, strategic advice that satisfies all of their legal and business needs throughout the life cycle of a franchise system - from inception, network development, operations, expansion, performance management, litigation through to dissolution or sale regardless of the jurisdiction. Our team is integrated across all of our offices, offering multi-jurisdictional franchise clients seamless and cohesive representation. Our expertise in Québec, with its distinct language law issues and civil law regime, is a particular asset.

Our sector co-leads, both of whom are listed as leading franchise lawyers in Chambers Canada and Lexpert Legal Directory, combine in-house experience and franchising expertise, enabling us to advise on strategic, transactional, advisory/day-to-day and contentious matters in a client-focused, pragmatic and value-minded manner. We also have particular expertise in highly-regulated industries (automotive, energy, health, telecommunications) in addition to traditional franchise industries such as food and beverage and hospitality.

We advise national and international companies, of all sizes and across a wide range of industries, including Paramount Franchise Group, Bell Mobility Inc., Mercedes Benz Canada Inc. and Nissan Canada Inc., on issues including:

  • compliance with and consideration of the application of provincial franchise legislation, including material fact and financial disclosure requirements
  • establishing appropriate franchise and corporate structures
  • trademark registrations, protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights;
  • drafting and negotiation of letters of intent and subsequent unit, master franchise and area development agreements required for expansion into various jurisdictions
  • preparing national and provincial franchise disclosure documents, including “Canadianizing” foreign-prepared disclosure
  • operations and network development strategies, including supply arrangements, operating policies and performance management and exiting of under-performing or non-compliant franchisees
  • negotiating and drafting commercial contracts for the sourcing of local products, suppliers and service providers
  • introduction and implementation of system changes
  • applicable taxation, transfer pricing, customs and trade considerations
  • partnering with local counsel, as needed, for comprehensive, integrated and seamless representation across jurisdictions
  • intra-jurisdictional transfer of goods, services, training teams and collateral services to support the successful expansion and development of the system
  • representing franchisors, manufacturers and distributors in litigation and arbitration, including multiparty and class action proceedings involving franchise systems and disputes with franchisees

View a list of lawyers who practice in this area of expertise.

For more information, please contact:


Helen Fotinos
[email protected]
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Lara Nathans
[email protected]
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Adam Ship
[email protected]
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