Franchise Disputes

Cozen O’Connor’s litigators represent franchisors in major disputes. We advise and advocate for clients in franchise litigation, arbitrations, and mediations that involve all aspects of the franchisor-franchisee relationship. We represent franchise clients in federal courts across the country and in court-ordered, contractual, and voluntary arbitrations and mediations. Depending on the franchise agreement, alternative dispute resolution forums may include AAA, JAMS, or FranArb.

As a top business litigation firm, Cozen O’Connor is well positioned to handle the full array of litigation strategies and contract issues that underlie a significant portion of franchise disputes. From product displays to staffing requirements to accounting procedures, almost every aspect of a franchise operation is stipulated in the contract. Our attorneys routinely analyze sophisticated franchise agreements and develop persuasive strategies to promote the interests of our clients. Our business litigators work in collaboration with the firm’s intellectual property attorneys, who often assist with franchise disputes involving misuse or misappropriation of trademarks, copyrights, trade dress, or trade secrets.

Our franchisor clients benefit from Cozen O’Connor’s deep trial experience, as this is an area of law where it pays to be proactive. Franchisors must often enforce the terms of their agreements to maintain their brand’s value. While Cozen O’Connor is known for its ability to resolve potential conflicts at the early stages, our attorneys are accomplished trial lawyers who can readily try cases that do not settle.



  • Represent franchisors in breach of contract claims, including those of nonpayment of royalty, advertising, and/or marketing fees and refusal to abide system standards
  • Lead intellectual property litigation, particularly if a terminated franchisee continues to use a franchisor’s trademarks, service marks, and/or trade dress
  • Defend franchisors in disputes over disclosures made before a franchise agreement is executed concerning actual or potential sales, initial investment or operating costs, income, or profit from franchised or non-franchised units
  • Defend franchisors in disputes over encroachment, the sale of franchise goods in a non-branded outlet, and online operations, including allegations of a breach of the covenant of good faith
  • Advocate for franchisors’ ability to make unilateral modification of the franchise business system and to terminate or nonrenew contracts with select franchisees


In The News

Cozen O’Connor Recognized as a “Best Law Firm” in 25 Practice Areas Nationwide, 115 Practice Areas Regionally

November 05, 2020

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers recognized Cozen O’Connor as a “Best Law Firm” in 25 practice areas nationwide and 115 practice areas regionally.

Cozen O’Connor Recognized As a Best Law Firm in 24 Practice Areas Nationwide, 106 Practice Areas Regionally

November 05, 2019

The U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations and peer review from leading attorneys in their field.

Cozen O’Connor Welcomes Lead Franchise Lawyer Susan Grueneberg to its Los Angeles Office

July 30, 2018

Cozen O’Connor is pleased to announce Susan Grueneberg, one of California’s best known and highly regarded franchise law attorneys, has agreed to head up its global franchise practice.

100 Cozen O’Connor Lawyers Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 23, 2017

Lawyers were selected for inclusion in the 2018 edition based on a rigorous peer-review that has been developed and defined for more than 30 years.


Susan A. Grueneberg


(213) 892-7996


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