Friday, December 27, 2013

J.J. Brooksbank Co. v. Budget Rent-a-Car Corp. case brief

J.J. Brooksbank Co. v. Budget Rent-a-Car Corp. case brief summary
337 N.W.2d 372 (1983)

Appellant and cross-respondent franchisee and respondent and cross-appellant rental car company each sought review of an order from the District Court, Hennepin County (Minnesota), which held, in the franchisee's declaratory action to ascertain its rights under a licensing agreement with the rental car company, that the franchisee was entitled to receive a 10 percent discount on the cost of reservations.

Shortly after the rental car company began, it entered into a franchise agreement with the franchisee. The agreement included a provision that the franchisee would receive all reservations from the rental car company's reservation office free of charge. At the time of the agreement, the parties used a two-tier telephone-based reservation system. As technology progressed, the rental car company began to use a computerized system and sought fees from the franchisee. The franchisee argued that under the agreement, the reservations were free. The rental car company argued that the agreement did not contemplate a system other than telephone reservations. The franchisee filed a declaratory action, and the trial court ordered the franchisee to pay the fees, but granted it a discount. Both parties sought review.


  • The court found that the agreement did not contemplate a more advanced reservation system, that the trial court properly determined that the franchisee was not entitled to cost-free reservation, but that the franchisee was entitled to a greater discount of a one-third reduction in reservation costs because it had such a long-term agreement with the rental car company.

The court modified the amount of the discount given to the franchisee, and affirmed the trial court's decision.

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