IFA CEO Update: Executing Our Campaign to Overturn the Joint Employer Rule & Protect Franchising

November 11, 2023

Dear IFA Members,

When the NLRB issued its expansive new joint employer rule October 26, IFA promised an aggressive response to prevent it from taking effect. Our coordinated campaign is well underway and includes five strategic elements outlined below.  Like all challenges facing the franchise business model in recent years, from COVID to labor shortages and the impact of inflation and interest rates, the franchise model will get through this latest challenge and be stronger for it.  By rowing together in support of the greater good and our shared commitment to one another, with franchisees and franchisors working together with their supplier partners to help support the IFA’s mission to protect, enhance and promote franchising, we’ll beat back this latest challenge to our business model and continue to grow in business for ourselves, but not by ourselves.

  1. Litigation: IFA, along with a dozen other trade groups filed suit challenging the NLRB rule in federal court in Texas. The lawsuit takes aim at the NLRB for exceeding the scope of its authority and violating the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) by failing to respond to comments regarding the rule’s harmful economic consequences outlined in IFA comments to the Board, its disregard for the common law, and more. Given the rule goes into effect December 26, our suit requests the court consider summary judgement in the case.
  2. Lobbying & Advocacy: Members of Congress introduced bipartisan legislation to overturn the joint employer rule – the same legislation IFA members called on lawmakers to support at the IFA Advocacy Summit back in September. Specifically, the legislation is a House and Senate joint resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act (CRA) that would nullify the unworkable NLRB rule, and it was introduced by U.S. Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) and U.S. Representatives John James (R-MI) and Virginia Foxx (R-NC). We urge all IFA members to ask their members of Congress to support this bill by clicking here to send them a message.
  3. Coalition Building: An IFA-led business coalition letter with 60 national organizations sent a letter to Congress urging repeal the NLRB rule. The Coalition to Save Local Businesses demonstrates the impact of the joint employer issue goes far beyond franchising, and these 60 groups are active allies with IFA to overturn the NLRB’s ruling.  
  4. Grassroots Mobilization & Media: There’s been significant press coverage of IFA’s leadership on the joint employer issue these past two weeks, and you can see it all at this Media page. We’re actively seeking deeper engagement in several key Senate states & House districts, including Arizona, California, Maine, Montana, New York and North Carolina. If you are interested in supporting these grassroots efforts, please contact me directly and I will connect you with a member of our Government Relations team.

  1. IFA Member Education: I hope to see you at the IFA Member Briefing on the NLRB rule on Thursday, November 16 at 3:00 PM EST. This will be a forum for franchisors, franchisees and suppliers to learn about the rule’s impact from both a practical and a legal perspective and ask questions of one another. Speakers for the program include:
  • Jerry Akers, Franchisee of Great Clips and The Joint Chiropractic (Franchisee Forum Chair)
  • Sam Ballas, President & CEO, East Coast Wings & Grill (Franchisor Forum Chair)
  • Amy Cheng, Partner, Cheng Cohen LLC

Thank you to all who continue to support the IFA with your time,  resources and  passion for protecting, enhancing and promoting franchising.


Matt Haller

President & CEO, International Franchise Association