MAINE FRANCHISE LAWS
Franchise Registration in Maine. There is no state franchise registration required in Maine.
Business Opportunity Exemption Registration in Maine. Maine business opportunity law defines a “business opportunity” in terms broad enough to encompass most franchises. “Business opportunity” means “[t]he sale, lease or distribution of any services, products, equipment, supplies, goods or commodities . . . that are sold, leased or distributed by the seller or an affiliated person to the purchaser for the purpose of enabling the purchaser to start a business, for which the purchaser is required to pay an amount that exceeds $250 either as a single payment or in multiple payments during any consecutive 6-month period and in which the seller represents that: . . . (5) The seller or an affiliated person will provide a sales program or marketing program except that this subsection does not apply to a marketing program provided in conjunction with the licensing of a federally registered trademark or service mark.” However, Maine business opportunity law does not apply “to a marketing program provided in conjunction with the licensing of a federally registered trademark or service mark.” If a franchisor qualifies for this exemption by licensing a federally-registered mark in connection with the franchise, this exemption is automatically effective and does not require any filing. 32 Maine Revised Statutes Section 4691(3)(A).
A franchisor that does not license a federally-registered mark in connection with the franchise would need to comply with the registration and disclosure requirements under the Maine business opportunity law. However, most franchisor in this situation avoid offering or selling franchises in Maine until after the federal registration of their principal mark(s) has become effective because the requirements under Maine business opportunity law are onerous, requiring that the seller have a permanent place of business in Maine and that the seller establish a surety bond or escrow account in Maine of at least $30,000. 32 Maine Revised Statutes Section 4695.
The web site for the Maine state regulators of business opportunities is here.
Franchise Disclosure in Maine. Maine has no state franchise disclosure laws. So, there are no special state disclosures required in an FDD used in Maine.
Franchise Relationship Law in Maine. Maine has no state franchise relationship laws for business format franchises.
Please see important information about US federal and state franchise laws here.
We work with start-up and existing franchisors throughout the United States (and internationally). We would be delighted to discuss Maine franchise law with you. Please contact us for a free initial consultation about your particular situation.
Vinson Franchise Law Firm