The Franchise disclosure register is a free online register that gives franchisees access to the franchisor’s information to help them make an informed decision before proceeding with a franchise system. The register is hosted and maintained by the Australian Government’s Treasury Department. However, all franchise content on the register is published by franchisors.
Franchisors must create a franchise profile and publish information about their business on the register. If they not, then they risk being in breach of the Code, which may result in the ACCC imposing penalties.
Existing franchisors who have created and issued a disclosure document before 31 October 2022 must create a profile on the register and new franchisors must join the register at least 14 days before entering into a franchise agreement. This also applies to master franchisors who have 2 or more sub-franchisors.
Franchisors must update or confirm the information in the register yearly which must be completed before the 14th day of the fifth month following the end of the franchisor’s financial year so if its 30 June financial year by the 14 November in each year or if their financial year ends 31 December then by the 14 May in each year. Franchisors can log onto the Register for directions on how to join and update a profile.
Key Fact Sheet
The Key Facts Sheet contains information specific to the franchise agreement a franchisee is proposing to enter into. It is a summary of the key terms set out in more detail in the disclosure document and also the franchise agreement. It does not cover everything you need to know and is not a substitute for getting specialist legal advice. In general, the key facts sheet is updated when the disclosure document is updated.
Most key facts sheets and disclosure documents need to be updated within 4 months after the end of the franchisor’s financial year. Franchisors are not required to update the key facts sheet if they:
- Entered into only one or no franchise agreements during the last financial year, and
- Don’t intend to enter into a franchise agreement in the upcoming financial year.
However, if a franchisor receives a written request from an existing franchisee for a copy of the disclosure document, they must update the key facts sheet. Updating the sheet ensures it reflects the position of the franchise at the end of the most recent financial year. This applies even if they don’t intend to enter into a franchise agreement in the upcoming financial year.
Franchisors must usually give the key facts sheet to potential franchisees, at least 14 days before the franchisee enters into a franchise agreement or pays non-refundable money to the franchisor (or their associate) at the same time they issue the suite of franchise documents to the franchisee. If a franchisee asks for the disclosure document in writing, then the franchisor must also give them a copy of the key facts sheet.
If you would like further information on franchising, contact Robert Toth (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call us on (03) 9510 9888.