Does Your Franchise Agreement Address Group Arbitration?

A popular contractual tool for franchise systems is a mandatory arbitration provision. A pair of recent decisions suggest that, where a franchisor’s franchise agreement does not directly address the issue of class- or group-wide arbitration, franchisees may be able to consolidate their claims and proceed against the franchisor as a group. The cases illustrate the importance for a franchisor of ensuring that its franchise agreement’s arbitration clause is drafted carefully.