Category Archives: Court Decisions

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Franchisors Take Note: FTC’S Authority to Regulate Corporate Data Security May Affect You

The Third Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld the Federal Trade Commission’s power to regulate corporate privacy and data security procedures under the Federal Trade Commission Act. Wyndham Worldwide was hit by three separate hacker attacks in 2008 and 2009, which resulted in the loss of personal and financial data for more than 600,000 consumers. The … Continue Reading

Twenty Years After Stella Liebeck, Plaintiffs Are Still Suing McDonald’s Over Hot Coffee

In 1994, one of the most famous civil verdicts in American history was rendered.  On August 18th of that year, a New Mexico jury awarded 81-year-old Stella Liebeck nearly $2.9 million in damages after she was burned by McDonald’s coffee that had spilled in her lap.  The case sent shockwaves through the legal community, became … Continue Reading

Seventh Circuit Rules That an Undisclosed Franchise Owner Is Subject to the Franchise Agreement’s Arbitration Clause

The issue of whether non-signatories to an arbitration agreement can be forced to arbitrate is not new, but it’s an issue that doesn’t arise often in the franchise context.  Recently, however, the Seventh Circuit ruled that an undisclosed partner in a franchised business was required to arbitrate her claims in accordance with the franchise agreement’s … Continue Reading

“Undercover Boss” Episode Isn’t Enough to Prove Vicarious Liability, Says a Maryland Federal Court

Plaintiffs routinely sue franchisors for the alleged misconduct of their franchisees.  In fact, it’s become an exceedingly common practice.  To use a simple example, if a person slips and falls in the parking lot of a franchised Joe’s Burger Shack location, they’ll inevitably sue Joe’s Burger Shack Franchising, Inc. as well, even if Franchising didn’t … Continue Reading
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