Biography Photo of Paul R Fransway

Paul R. Fransway

Of Counsel

Mr. Fransway concentrates his practice in franchise, distribution, trademark and unfair competition law.  He serves as primary franchise counsel for a number of national franchisors, and he helps them comply with disclosure and registration requirements under the Federal Trade Commission and various state laws. He is also an authority in all aspects of franchise contract enforcement, including covenants not to compete, trademark infringement, and post-termination remedies, both in court and in arbitration.

Education & Credentials


Michigan State University

B.S., 1972

University of Houston Law Center

J.D., 1977
  • magna cum laude

University of Houston Law Center

LL.M., Taxation, 1987

Bar Admission

  • Florida
  • Michigan
  • Texas


  • The Best Lawyers in America®
    •  Franchise Law, 2013-2024
  • DBusiness Magazine
    • "Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit," Franchise Law, 2012, 2015-2016
    • Intellectual Property Law, 2012-2013
  • Who's Who Legal
  • The International Who's Who of Franchise Lawyers, 2012-2019

Representative Clients

  • Jersey Mike's Franchise Systems, Inc.
  • Critter Control, Inc.
  • The Coffee Beanery, Ltd.
  • Cottage Inn Carryout & Delivery, Inc.
  • Retro Fitness, LLC

Prominent Assignments

Drafting of franchise disclosure documents for new and established franchisors

Registration of franchise offerings in all franchise registration states

Representation of franchisors in regulatory enforcement proceedings

Enforcement of franchise agreements and related litigation and arbitration

Domestic and foreign trademarks, including trademark prosecution, portfolio management, and availability counseling

Licensing of trademarks, copyrights, software, entertainment and information technology

Counseling on intellectual property aspects of acquisition transactions

Litigation of trademark, copyright, unfair competition and Internet law matters

Representation as primary internal franchise counsel for large international restaurant franchisor

Defense of class action lawsuit asserting disclosure violations against national franchisor

Enforcement of post termination covenant not to compete for national franchisor through preliminary and permanent injunction in federal court and recovery of substantial arbitration award

Primary counsel for national franchised sign company in purchase of competing franchised sign system

Primary trademark counsel for 100 year old household brand in its international operations including trademark registration, maintenance and litigation for its trademark portfolio in over 80 countries

Primary trademark counsel for large national university in all aspects of its licensing program, trademark enforcement and registration, brand identity program and availability counseling

Representation of large, multi-system franchisee in all aspects of operation, including management of its real estate portfolio, interactions with its franchisors and multimillion dollar acquisitions of other franchised operations.

Representation of local public television station in acquisition and management of its intellectual property portfolio.

Professional Involvement

  • American Bar Association, Forum on Franchising
  • International Franchise Association Supplier Forum
  • National Association of College and University Attorneys
  • Founding Director, Spitzer Center for Ethical Leadership
  • Families Against Narcotics, Inc.
  • Trustee, Charter Township of Lyon (Oakland County, Michigan)


  • Section of ABA Franchise Deskbook Selected State Laws, Commentary, and Annotations, Third Edition, 2019
  • Traversing the Minefield:  Recent Developments Relating to Accidental Franchises, 37 Franchise Law Journal No. 2, Fall 2017
  • International Franchise Association Legal Symposium: Franchise Litigation
  • International Franchise Association Legal Symposium: Vicarious Liability Arising from Franchisor Control of the Operation of the Franchised Business
  • International Franchise Association Legal Symposium: Basic Track – Intellectual Property
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