When expanding your business into Australia it is essential that you engage the services of a franchising lawyer located within the jurisdiction.
Franchising law in Australia is unique to Australia and a good working knowledge of the applicable law and experience within this jurisdiction is important to help to ensure your business, structure and documents are compliant and do not inadvertently infringe applicable laws.
The Franchising Code of Conduct is the principal law governing franchising in Australia and it is a nationwide law. Although many other laws may impact upon the franchising relationship such as:
- The Competition and Consumer Act CTH;
- Corporations Act Cth;
- Contract law; and
- restraint of trade legislation.
Unlike some jurisdictions, which require different disclosure documents in each State or Territory, you will only need one disclosure document throughout the whole of Australia.
A failure to comply with The Franchising Code of Conduct can lead to large penalties (in some cases up to $AU54,000).
A franchisor (together with all entities carrying on trade in Australia) must also comply with the Competition and Consumer Act which includes provisions relating to a prohibition on misleading and deceptive conduct, unconscionable conduct, price fixing, third lince forcing and retail price maintenance.