Making the decision to start your own business can be both exciting and frightening at the same time. When you choose to start a franchise as your new business, the amount of paperwork can be intimidating. A thorough review of all of the documents required and the steps that need to be taken is essential to understanding your rights and responsibilities under Maryland and federal law.
You will be given a myriad of documents to review, and the franchise disclosure documents are time-sensitive. The disclosures, which the franchisor must give you by law, provide you with important information about the franchise. Ordinarily, you are given a time limit to review them, and having an attorney scrutinize the disclosures as soon as possible could be beneficial -- especially since these are just the first of the documents that need to be thoroughly reviewed.
If you are satisfied with the company, and how it is performing, you can move on to the next step. The franchise agreement, which is the contract between you and the company, requires particular scrutiny since this document will govern your relationship with the company. You must be willing to comply with your responsibilities and be satisfied with what the company is obligated to do for you.
Once all of the details are worked out, and you and your attorney are satisfied that everything is in order, you can move forward. Everything that needs to be done prior to starting a new business can seem tedious, but it is important to protect yourself since you -- like most people in Maryland who start businesses -- are most likely putting everything on the line. This is just one reason why having an attorney to review, advise and assist you with the process of starting a franchise, or other business, is crucial.