A competition of interests, normally between opposing groups.
Any statute exists because:
- some interest(s) wanted them,
- that group had the clout to push the political system to put it into place while
- defeating opposing views.
Franchisees face the combined strength of what I have defined as Big Franchising. The pathetic state of Canadian franchise law is the predictable result. Ontario, PEI, Alberta and (sort of) New Brunswick have specific franchise laws.
In Ontario, the relevant law is the Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure), 2000.
I helped push for the first Ontario, starting in 1998. I was even an expert witness at the public hearings. The Wishart Act was sold to me as a “compromise” or as a “first step”. Those were lies and I believed them: then.
The Ontario government has refused to listen to repeated calls for improving the laws, from franchisees.
The industry had a problem in the lat 90s: they couldn’t sell as many outlets because of very high profile nightmare cases such as Pizza Pizza or 3 for 1 Pizza and Wings. They needed a fake law (McLaw: make-believe fairness) and they got it. The Ministry of Consumer’s reaction to Country Style’s alleged dirty CCAA and the Grand & Toy mass terminations confirmed that.
99% of all abuse is never seen by Ontario judge (let alone a jury of citizens)
The high cost of litigation and the franchise bar’s “filtering process” sees to that.
The law needs to change to become relevant or be abolished.