BCLI issues Consultation Paper on a BC Franchise Act
2 April 2013
By Alison Taylor
2 April 2013—The British Columbia Law Institute (BCLI) is proposing franchise legislation for British Columbia.
BCLI has issued the Consultation Paper on a Franchise Act for British Columbia to obtain input from franchisors, franchisees, business and consumer organizations and the general public on the proposed legislation to govern franchising, which would resemble legislation already in force in five other provinces.
“Given the prevalence of franchised businesses in BC and their importance to the provincial economy, it is surprising that BC has no franchising legislation,” said Jim Emmerton, Executive Director of BCLI. “The introduction of BC franchise legislation would further increase the degree of harmonization of regulatory standards within Canada, while also giving appropriate and needed protection to BC franchise owners.”
Alberta, Ontario, Manitoba, PEI and New Brunswick have legislation in place that imposes pre-sale disclosure requirements to guard against investors being misled when purchasing a franchise. Their legislation contains certain other important protections also aimed at levelling the playing field between franchisors and franchisees. The Uniform Franchises Act developed under the Uniform Law Conference of Canada Commercial Law Strategy was the model for the franchise enactments of several of those provinces. The proposed BC legislation would also be based primarily on the Uniform Franchises Act.
BCLI hopes the Consultation Paper on a Franchise Act for British Columbia will be a catalyst for an informed discussion about franchise regulation in BC. After consideration of responses received, BCLI will produce a report with final recommendations and draft legislation.
BCLI strives to be a leader in law reform by carrying out the best in scholarly law-reform research and writing and the best in outreach relating to law reform.
Senior Staff Lawyer