Franchise Council of Australia

Legal Symposium 2021

PROGRAM – Tuesday 19 October

11:00am – 12:40pm


11:00am – 11:10am

Opening & Welcome

Mary Aldred, CEO, Franchise Council of Australia

11:10am – 11:40am

Ministerial Address

The Hon Stuart Robert MP, Minister for Employment, Workforce, Skills, Small and Family Business

11:40am – 12:40pm

Franchising Code of Conduct Plenary Panel Discussion

FACILITATOR: Philip Colman, Principal, MST Lawyers


Derek Sutherland, Partner, HWL Ebsworth

Penny Ward, Senior Counsel, Baker & McKenzie

Andrew Wiseman, Partner, Allens

12:40pm – 1:10pm


1:10pm – 1:55pm


1:10pm – 1:55pm

ACCC Update

Mick Keogh OAM, Deputy Chair, ACCC

2:00pm – 2:40pm


Commercial leasing

This session will provide:

  • Information on the new leasing codes and examples of disputes and remedies that have been undertaken by the VSBC
  • Learnings for drafting leases, including force majeure clauses,
  • Tactics for landlord negotiations,
  • Guidance on addressing legacy issues of Covid legislation such as rent deferral provisions in the event of the sale of a business or assignment of a lease

FACILITATOR: Mary Aldred, CEO, Franchise Council of Australia


Lynda McAlary-Smith, Victorian Small Business Commissioner

Phillip Chapman, Director, Lease1

Competition and Consumer Law Update (including Cartel Conduct)

Compliance with competition laws is essential given the significant fines and penalties which may apply, including potential imprisonment for Cartel conduct.  Our presenters will discuss the risk areas and discuss the recent Cartel conduct trial against Country Care which operates its business very similar to a franchise operation and where the ACCC was seeking criminal sanctions

FACILITATOR: Sean O’Donnell, Partner, HWL Ebsworth


Richard Westmoreland, HWL Ebsworth

Josh Simons, Partner, Thomson Geer

2:45pm – 3:30pm


2:45pm – 3:25pm

Case Update


Shaun Temby, Partner, Dispute Resolution & Litigation, Maddocks

Harry Hill-Smith, Barrister (Vic)

3:25pm – 3:30pm

Day one closing remarks

Mary Aldred, CEO, Franchise Council of Australia



PROGRAM – Wednesday 20 October

11:00am – 11:50am


11:00am – 11:05am

Opening & Welcome

Mary Aldred, CEO, Franchise Council of Australia

11:05am – 11:50am

Australian Small Business & Family Enterprise Ombudsman Update

The Hon Bruce Billson, Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

11:55pm – 12:35pm


COVID-19: Emerging legal issues for franchisors

The pandemic has created a unique set of operational issues for franchise systems. This session will discuss:

  • Franchisors’ obligations to franchisees including in regard to royalty relief
  • The legal position managing vaccinations in franchise networks and workplaces
  • Rights and obligations for working from home and directions to return to work, restructures, redundancies etc

FACILITATOR: Nick Rimington, Special Counsel, Norton Rose Fulbright Australia


Lisa Anaf, Partner, Mills Oakley

Managing M&As

Crucial legal considerations for franchisors when planning expansion or exit strategies including:

  • Obligations to franchisees in a large transaction
  • How changes to the Franchising Code of impact on the changeover
  • Franchisor assignments and Code compliance, including whether a new franchisor needs to issue a disclosure document or whether new franchise agreements need to be entered into

FACILITATOR: Greg Hipwell, Partner  – Commercial, Maddocks


Jessica Reid, Partner – Commercial, Maddocks

Marshall Bromwich, Partner, Norton Rose Fulbright Australia

12:35pm – 1:05pm


1:05pm – 1:45pm


Alternative Dispute Resolution

With the recent amendments to the Franchising Code of Conduct providing more alternative dispute resolution (ADR) options, this session will discuss:

  • the pros and cons of undertaking arbitration, where it might be appropriate or used to best effect in the franchise setting;
  • conciliation and how this differs to mediation or arbitration;
  • what ASBFEO will be doing when a dispute gets referred to them;
  • some scenarios where parties might agree to use mediation / arbitration / conciliation to resolve franchise disputes; and
  • sample clauses for arbitration / mediation or conciliation.

FACILITATOR: Alicia Hill, Principal, MST Lawyers


Dr Craig Latham, Deputy, ASBFEO

Philip Tucker, Barrister, Mediator and Arbitrator

Cyber security and privacy

Understand the key privacy and security considerations for the implementation and roll out of tech platforms throughout franchise networks. Identify the key issues to minimise privacy and cybersecurity risks, including: process considerations (e.g. PIAs); documents such as data sharing agreements and privacy notices; and security considerations for franchisors and franchisees.

FACILITATOR: Bronywn Furse, Partner, Thompson Geer


Melanie Marks, Principal, ElevenM

Peter Quigley, Principal, ElevenM

1:50pm – 2:30pm


Key considerations for franchise agreements

This session will discuss:

  • The impact of amendments to the Franchising Code of Conduct on franchise agreements; and
  • The application of laws regarding Unfair contract terms on franchise agreements

FACILITATOR: Simone Pentis, Managing Director, Advantage Partners Lawyers


Anna Trist, Special Counsel, K & L Gates

Seva Surmei, Principal, DMAW Lawyers

IR update

This session will address:

  • Reforms to the definition of casual employment enacted during 2021
  • Franchisor obligations regarding underpayments

FACILITATOR: Racha Abboud, Partner, Baybridge Lawyers


Steve Champion, Director, ER Strategies

Danielle Keyes, General Counsel – Head of Legal, Guzman y Gomez Mexican Kitchen

2:35pm – 3:40pm


2:35pm – 3:35pm

Practical Ethics

Michael Dolan, Special Counsel Ethics, Law Institute of Victoria

Carly Erwin, Lawyer, Law Institute of Victoria

3:35pm – 3:40pm

Day two closing remarks

Mary Aldred, CEO, Franchise Council of Australia



Please note program is subject to change.

All times listed are Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time (AEDT)


A maximum of 220 CFE education points toward the Certified Franchise Executive (CFE) qualification are awarded for participation in the 2021 Legal Symposium.