Articles - Focus on Franchising

About Articles The following articles are published by the Franchise Law Section of the Ontario Bar Association. Members are encouraged to submit articles. About Articles

Editor: Philip Kennedy


Who's the Boss? An Analysis of the Changing Workplaces Review: Special Advisors' Interim Report

  • December 05, 2016

In July 2016, special advisors leading the review of the Labour Relations Act (Ontario) and Employment Standards Act (Ontario) released an interim report, titled "Changing Workplaces Review: Special Advisors’ Interim Report". This article provides an overview of the salient aspects of the Report, with a particular focus on how the proposed amendments stand to impact the franchise industry.

Franchise Law

Counting Calories: Calorie Disclosure Requirements Coming to Ontario Restaurant Menus in 2017

  • October 11, 2016
  • Laura Weinrib, Pei Li and David Shaw

As of January 1, 2017, the Healthy Menu Choices Act will require food service chains with 20 or more locations in Ontario to disclose calorie information for most standard food and drink items on menus, labels, tags and signage. This article provides an overview of the various disclosure obligations imposed by the Act and discusses the Act's application to, and impact on, franchisors in the food service industry.

Franchise Law

Non-competes in the Franchise Context: How to determine enforceability?

  • April 11, 2016
  • Jennifer Pocock

Franchise agreements often contain non-competition provisions or other restrictive covenants to prevent departing franchisees from using the knowledge and expertise gained during the term of their agreements to compete against the franchisor once the relationship is over. However, depending on the facts of each case and the specific terms in the franchise agreement, these non-competes may not be enforceable.

Franchise Law

The Evolving Demands of Franchisor Disclosure

  • November 04, 2015
  • Alex Kagan

This article provides a basic-level overview of the issues associated with disclosure documents and their impact on franchisors, pursuant to the Arthur Wishart Act (the “AWA”). Disclosure is at the heart of the AWA - as stated by the Ontario Court of Appeal: “The purpose of the legislation is to protect franchisees and the mechanism for so doing is the imposition of rigorous disclosure requirements and strict penalties for non-compliance.”

Franchise Law

Franchisor Disclosure Obligations When a Franchisee Resells its Franchise

  • September 23, 2015
  • Jonathan Mesiano-Crookston and Andrea Wong

While many franchisors are aware that they have disclosure obligations when granting a franchise to a prospective franchisee, many forget that they have the same disclosure obligations where a franchisee is selling their franchise to another franchisee.

Franchise Law

Non-Application of the Arthur Wishart Act

  • July 16, 2015
  • Chuck Merovitz and Yasmin Vinograd

The Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000, S.O. 2000, c. 3 (“AWA”) came into force on December 15, 2009. The AWA provides certain inalterable rights and duties in the relationship between a franchisor and franchisee. These duties have been the subject of considerable litigation. However, there has been little discussion around the circumstances in which the AWA will not apply.

Franchise Law

Severance in the Franchise World: The Cora Restaurants Decision

  • July 07, 2015
  • Tanya Walker and Andrew Ostrom

In 2176693 Ontario Ltd. v. Cora Franchise Group Inc., the Ontario Court of Appeal addressed the issues of the enforceability of a franchise agreement clause which purported to require the franchisee to provide a general release to the franchisor and the application of the doctrine of severability in the context of the Arthur Wishart Act (“AWA”).

Franchise Law

An Expansion of the Common Law Duty of Good Faith – The Duty of Honest Performance. The Supreme Court of Canada Decision in Bhasin v. Hrynew

  • November 26, 2014
  • David Kornhauser

The decision of the Supreme Court of Canada in Bhasin v. Hrynew, 2014 SCC 71, which was released on November 13, 2014, deals with the common law duty to perform contracts honestly. It also provides a thorough and reasoned examination of the development of the good faith principle in Anglo-Canadian contract law and will likely be seen as a seminal decision in this area.

Franchise Law