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A U.S. district judge in Virginia has ruled that a restaurant chain operator is liable for breach of contract and is obligated to pay a franchise consulting company for sales and marketing services that the consultant performed for the chain under the contract between the two companies. Rejecting the contract defenses of lack of standing, fraudulent inducement, lack of specificity, lack of mutuality, and unconscionability, U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis, III, of the Eastern District of Virginia, granted summary judgment in favor of the consultant.
The case arose from a 2008 contract between Freshii Development, LLC, which owns a chain of healthy fast-food restaurants, and Fransmart, LLC, an Alexandria, Va.-based company that agreed, in exchange for a percentage of franchise fees and revenues, to help Freshii expand by finding appropriate franchisees for its restaurants. In early 2010, Fransmart restructured its business and set up a new company to which it assigned its contracts and transferred its assets and liabilities. Freshii then stopped paying Fransmart under the contract, and Fransmart sued for breach. Freshii asserted five defenses to the lawsuit, all of which Judge Ellis rejected.
Read the rest of the article at the Virginia Business Litigation Lawyer blog
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