12 Tips For Franchisors To Reduce Joint-Employer Risks

Law360, New York (September 29, 2014, 3:31 PM EDT) -- Until now, the spotlight has never shined so brightly on franchising and, specifically, on whether franchisors are responsible for their franchisees’ activities.

On July 29, 2014, the NLRB’s general counsel announced its plan to sue McDonald’s for numerous unfair labor practices at franchisee-owned restaurants, claiming McDonald’s is the joint employer of the franchisees’ workers. Weeks later, on Aug. 27, 2014, the Ninth Circuit issued twin decisions holding thousands of FedEx Ground drivers were actually FedEx employees, not independent contractors, as FedEx claimed. While FedEx’s arrangement with its drivers is not a franchise, the rulings expose examples of vulnerable practices that are...

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