Dealership and Franchise Law

With more than three decades of experience in dealership and franchise law, you might say Stafford Rosenbaum wrote the book on dealership and franchise law. One of our partners was, in fact, instrumental in crafting Wisconsin’s dealership law. Two others are co-authors of the definitive treatise on the subject, The Wisconsin Fair Dealership Law, published by the State Bar of Wisconsin. The chapter on trade regulation in the State Bar’s Annual Survey of Wisconsin Law  is also written by a Stafford partner.

Experience, Knowledge, and Trust

Business leaders and our peers in the legal profession turn to Stafford Rosenbaum for assistance because they know our Dealership and Franchise Law attorneys have the experience and knowledge to solve problems, evaluate options, and protect a business as it grows. Our depth of experience includes advice and representation in the following types of matters:

  • Dealership termination
  • Antitrust
  • Licensing
  • Price discrimination
  • Franchise registration and disclosure
  • Dealership and franchise litigation
  • Minimum mark-up statutes
  • Business opportunity statutes
  • Business tort litigation
  • Common law rules regarding choice of laws

Our Dealership and Franchise Law attorneys offer their counseling and litigation services to dealers, distributors, franchisors, franchisees, and manufacturers across a broad range of industries, including:

  • Heavy equipment (on-road, off-road, and agricultural)
  • Power sports (e.g., personal watercraft, ATVs, and snowmobiles)
  • Motorcycles
  • Motor vehicles
  • Bicycles
  • Beauty salon products
  • Office copiers and imaging equipment
  • Home improvement products
  • Elevators
  • Fast-food

Measurable Results

Our experience and knowledge has helped us attain for our clients a variety of positive results:

  • Summary judgment for a manufacturer in a $90 million case involving alleged wrongful termination of a dealership
  • A jury verdict in dealer’s favor in wrongful termination case after successful appeal of adverse summary judgment ruling
  • A negotiated continuation of agricultural implement dealership after termination notice for failure to update facilities
  • A jury verdict for manufacturer in alleged wrongful termination of heavy equipment distributorship
  • Relief against proposed adverse actions for franchisee and dealer associations through litigation and/or negotiation
  • Injunctive relief for dealers in computers, commercial lawn mowers, agricultural implements, beauty salon products, chain saws, lighting fixtures, kerosene heaters, newspapers, and numerous other products
  • Defeat of requests for injunctive relief brought by distributors of alcoholic beverages, television sets, and numerous other products
  • A successful challenge of applicability of successor-distributor statute under Wisconsin’s wholesale liquor distribution laws
  • Distribution agreements drafted and implemented in several industries, including furniture, alcoholic beverages and swimming pools