In a case which has been ongoing since 2013, the owners of several Colorado
Steak ‘n Shake franchises lost a lawsuit filed by the compay of
the restraurant. In the case, the company had alleged that the franchisees
in question had intentionally violated the uniform pricing requirements
in their franchise agreement.
Steak ‘n Shake launched their own investigation of the franchisees
when local customers complained that they could not find the signature
$4 menu at the Centennial and Sheridan locations. They found that the
franchisees were intentionally hiding menus from their customers, and
in many cases charging over $5 for a $4 meal. In addition to the price
hikes, large cups for soft drinks were being replaced with smaller versions.
Franchisees Violated the Terms of the Agreement
Per the specifics of their franchise agreements, Steak ‘n Shake franchisees
are required to maintain uniform pricing and promotions. U.S. District
Judge Raymond Moore ruled that the franchisee’s actions “indisputably”
violated the terms of the agreement. He also described the pricing practices
as “deceptive” and ultimately ruled in favor of the company,
giving them until mid-August to decide the amount of money which they
feel should be awarded.
An e-mail to employees from one of the franchisees explained their attempts
to hide the practice, saying that not letting Steak 'n Shake know
wass in the hopes that it would take the company a month or moreto notice,during
which the subsidy checks would continue to come in. The subsidy checks
in question were being sent to the stores due to their remote location
relative to the company’s footprint throughout the Midwest.
Having a Dispute? Call Our Los Angeles Franchise Lawyer.
If you own a franchise, you may find yourself in disagreement with the
decisions made by the company. However, franchise agreements can be very
restrictive, and you could potentially lose your business for violating
the terms and conditions.
For any dispute over the terms of your contract, contact Franchise Legal
Support. We have more than 28 years of experience in handling the law
as it affects franchisees, and can knowledgeably educate you on your legal options.
Contact our experienced Los Angeles franchise attorney today by calling