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Franchise Ownership

By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Dunkin' Donuts' parent corporation, Dunkin Brands was sued by one of its franchisees last month.

A franchisee is suing the coffee-and-donut chain for racial discrimination, in particular against "Asian Indian American women of color", whom she says told her she was not servile enough and didn't allow her to purchase a third chain as allowed by the franchise agreement.

Under the law, before you buy into a franchise, you must be given a disclosure document which includes the names of at least 10 previous purchasers who live closest to you; a fully audited financial statement, the cost of starting and maintaining the business and you'll also get the franchise agreement, which tells you your obligations, the training you'll get, whether other franchises will be granted within your territory, and royalties you'll have to pay.

Read those documents carefully and consider hiring a lawyer to explain what they require of you because knowing that you love donuts is not enough knowledge to decide if you want to spend your life savings on a donut shop.

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