John is the founding partner of Sotos LLP and carries on a broad transactional and dispute resolution practice in franchise, hospitality, automotive, grocery and distribution law.
John possesses unique expertise in franchising corporate networks, mergers of competing systems and offers an expert perspective on franchise regulation, having advised governments on both a national and international scale throughout his career. He regularly counsels companies on matters regarding structuring international and domestic franchise transactions, system restructurings, distribution of products and services as well as on franchise disclosure matters.
He offers strategic support to franchisors, buying or selling franchise systems, as well as those who are in the process of repositioning their concept or brand. John has significant expertise negotiating complex franchise matters and is counsel to numerous trade and not for profit associations.
John also has substantial experience advising family owned companies in transitioning to professional management, including the establishment, management and leadership of advisory and other boards that facilitate intergenerational succession.
Assistant: Sally Raulino
t: 416.977.5333 x 304
LL.B., University of Western Ontario, 1978
- Listed in the LEXPERT/American Lawyer Media Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada
- Listed in the Canadian Legal LEXPERT Directory as “most frequently recommended” (1997-2017)
- Listed in the 2016-2017 LEXPERT Guide to the Leading US/Canada Cross-Border Corporate Lawyers in Canada
- Listed in Who’s Who Legal: Canada 2016 as a leading Canadian franchise law practitioner
- Listed in the Hall of Fame 2017 by Franchise Times magazine
- Named “Legal Eagle” by Franchise Times magazine, (2013-2017), Top Franchise Lawyers in North America
- Consistently listed in Best Lawyers in Canada
- Listed in the International Who’s Who of Franchise Lawyers, International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers, and Who’s Who Legal: Canada
- Highest ranking (AV Preeminent) and Toronto’s Top Rated in Martindale-Hubbell (2013)
- Ranked in Chambers Canada 2016 for franchising
- Successful franchisor restructuring under CCAA and BIA
- Successful implementation of system-wide upgrades to franchise agreements
- Special Counsel to a number of national and international franchisors and Director of numerous companies and not-for-profit organizations
- Co-chair of the Uniform Law Conference of Canada Franchising Project which developed the model franchise law in Canada
- Appointed to the Franchise Working Sector Team by the Ontario government to provide ongoing advice on franchise industry regulation
- Ongoing work to assist developing countries in the adoption of franchising as a vehicle for economic expansion
- Rights of First Offer and Rights of First Refusal: blessings or hidden trap, Sotos LLP blog (August 11, 2017)
- U.S. Insight: Using Customer Feedback to Evaluate Franchisees, Sotos LLP blog (November 30, 2016)
- Be Prepared: Changes to Tax Rules Could Mean Higher Taxes on Sale of Dealership, Sotos LLP Blog (October 31, 2016)
- Global trends in franchise law – Recent developments, Sotos LLP blog (May 2, 2016)
- Private Equity in Franchising – A Lesson from Dunkin’ Donuts Sotos LLP blog May 5th 2015
- Crackdown on Calories: What does it mean for Franchisors? Sotos LLP blog March 13th 2015
- Speaker – “Legal and Legislative Update”, CFA Franchise Law Day, January 30, 2014
- Speaker – “Franchise Regulation Considerations for Colombia”, International Chamber of Commerce/Bogota Chamber of Commerce, May 22, 2014
- Speaker – “Ethical Issues for Franchise Lawyers”, OBA Franchise Law dinner, April 30, 2013
- Recent Trends in Franchise Relationship Laws, prepared for the Annual Conference of the International Bar Association in Dubai, October 2011.
- “The Rationale Behind Franchise Regulation”, Newsletter of the International Bar Association Committee on International Franchising, July 2011
- “Mass Franchise Disputes” CFA Ontario Region Legal Day, March 2011
- “Ethical Issues for Franchise Lawyers” OBA Franchise Section Dinner Program, February 2011
- “News from Around the World” IFA, May 2010
- “Supplying the Franchise System” Canadian Business Opportunities Magazine, February 2010
- “Your Franchisees will Look before they Leap” Canadian Business Opportunities Magazine, May 2010
August 11, 2017
Rights of First Offer and Rights of First Refusal: blessings or hidden trap
June 13, 2017
Allan Dick, John Sotos, and Peter Viitre have been included in 2017 LEXPERT Guide to Leading US/Canada Cross-Border Corporate Lawyers.
May 10, 2017
Lexpert Ranks Sotos as Top Franchise Law Boutique
April 11, 2017
The Franchise Times Legal Eagles 2017 saw the Sotos LLP team soar to the top again this year as Canada’s largest and most experienced franchise law group.
November 30, 2016
U.S. Insight: Using Customer Feedback to Evaluate Franchisees