I recently had the distinction of reviewing a franchise agreement for the very first prospective franchisee in a franchise. My review revealed there were still many issues to work out in the agreement and with the system in general to make it reasonable for the franchisee. But the potential opportunity was very intriguing to the prospective franchisee due to the financial success of the underlying business. Sometimes it is difficult to balance the legal issues (what I know from past experiences with franchises that have failed) v. prospects of financial success (i.e.the potential for a significant return on investment particularly with a new or inexperienced franchisor).

Continue Reading The Dilemma of a Start-Up Franchise

If you’re not a risk-taker, you should get the hell out of business.

– Ray Kroc

I read the above quote today, and wondered, is this true? Do you really need to be a risk-taker to be in business? And, if you don’t take risks you should actually get the hell out of business. Because as a business lawyer, our whole being is about reducing risks for clients, not advocating for it.


Continue Reading Do You Need to Take Risks to be in Business?

I recently saw an interesting TED talk on how to be a great leader from Simon Sinek. In the talk he told a story about a business owner who refuses to fire any employees for poor performance. Instead, the company coaches their employees to perform better.

Imagine if franchise operations followed the same philosophy

A year ago I joked that I didn’t know the governor (Branstad at the time) and the legislature could cut another $7.7 million from our judiciary. While my comment was tongue-in-cheek, my worries were not. Our Iowa judiciary is facing challenges like we have never seen before. And it’s showing.  The US Institute for Legal

You want to start a business in Iowa.  Do you really need a lawyer? My answer may surprise you.

Absolutely not!

Every day, many entrepreneurs do exactly that by using online incorporation kits.  There is definitely a segment of the market these incorporation companies serve.

The most obvious motivating factor for setting up a corporation

As my clients probably noticed this year, the Iowa Secretary of State increased the corporate biennial report fees for Iowa Corporations in 2018 from $30 for online filing to $45. Iowa LLCs will have the same increase in 2019. My understanding is that the increased fees is an effort to pay for business technology upgrades.