Liz Dillon

With over 15 years of experience, Liz Dillon counsels growing and experienced franchisors to expand and maintain their franchise systems. She also assists startup franchisors to develop and position their franchise systems for growth both domestically and internationally. Liz serves as the leader of the firm’s Franchise & Distribution Practice Group. 

Liz manages the franchise registration process for many well-known and emerging brands every year and has worked with numerous startup franchisors. She has helped franchisors expand into Latin America, the Caribbean, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. She brings extensive knowledge and experience in preparing and registering disclosure documents, as well as franchise, development, and supply agreements. Liz is the co-editor of Lathrop GPM's Global Franchise Regulation Update - a comprehensive update on international regulatory developments compiled from publications and correspondence with franchise counsel throughout the world, published around twice annually. 

Liz also assists clients through mergers and acquisitions, providing franchise, licensing and distribution expertise for transactions.

In addition to representing franchisors, Liz represents other companies in the myriad of legal issues involved with the distribution of goods. She advises on matters including dealer / distribution agreements, international sale of goods, and avoiding franchise and business opportunity laws (accidental franchise).

Clients value Liz's ability to provide real-life solutions to challenging problems. They depend on her responsive and pragmatic, yet creative, advice. Tenacity is a strength that has helped Liz gain the recognition of being named a “Legal Eagle” by Franchise Times, honored as a “Minnesota Rising Star” by peers, recognized by Chambers USA and Chambers Global, and acknowledged as an “Up and Coming Attorney” by Minnesota Lawyer. In addition, she has earned the Certified Franchise Executive designation from the Institute of Certified Franchise Executives.


  • "The Annotated International Franchise Agreement, or How to Turn a Domestic Agreement into an International Agreement," American Bar Association 44th Annual Forum on Franchising, Atlanta, Georgia, October 2021
  • "Updating Internet Strategies After the Pandemic," 2021 International Distribution Institute Annual Conference," June 17, 2021
  • “A Comprehensive Legal Review of the Creation of a Start-Up Franchise System,” American Bar Association 42nd Annual Forum on Franchising, Denver, Colorado, October 2019
  • "Impact of Accounting Standards Change on International Transactions," Moderator, International Breakfast Panel, ABA 40th Annual Forum on Franchising, Palm Desert, CA, October 19, 2017
  • “Judicial Update,” IFA’s 49th Annual Legal Symposium, Washington, D.C., May 17, 2016
  • “Negotiating Challenging Provisions in Franchise Agreements,” American Bar Association Webinar, February 2, 2016
  • “Drafting and Negotiating Challenging Provisions in Franchise and Development Agreements,” American Bar Association 38th Annual Forum on Franchising, New Orleans, Louisiana, October 1, 2015
  • “10 Commandments of Franchise Sales,” International Franchise Expo, New York, June 20, 2015
  • “Tools for Taking Your Franchise Model to the Next Level,” International Franchise Exposition, New York, June 18, 2015
  • “Annual Leadership Conference: Digging Deeper: Mining for the Leader Within,” facilitator at the IFA 54th Annual Convention, New Orleans, Louisiana, February 1, 2014
  • “Be Prepared: Retirement and Succession Planning,” IFA’s 53rd Annual Convention, Las Vegas, Nevada, February 18, 2013
  • “Seizing International Opportunities: Five Ways to Maximize Your Return on Investment Through International Franchising,” International Franchise Expo, New York, New York, co-presenter, June 1, 2012
  • “To Err is Human: Remedying Mistakes in the Pre-Sale Disclosure Process,” IFA’s 44th Annual Legal Symposium, Washington, DC, panel moderator, May 1, 2011
  • Co-Presenter, "Taking Your Franchise System to the Next Level:
    Examining Common Traits of Successful Franchisors," Franchise Expo South 2011, January 14, 2011
  • Co-Presenter, "Franchise Law Series: Look Before You Leap—Navigating the Franchise Disclosure and Registration Maze, webinar, May 14, 2010

  • “Embracing the Amended FTC Franchise Rule,” IFA’s 41st Annual Legal Symposium, Washington, DC, co-facilitator of Roundtable, May 1, 2008
  • “Market Saturation—Determining the Delicate Balance Between Market Maximization and Cannibalism,” IFA’s 48th Annual Franchise Convention, Orlando, Florida, co-facilitator of Business Solution Roundtable, February 1, 2008
  • “Maximizing Expansion Opportunities While Minimizing Territorial Conflict,” co-presenter, IFA’s Franchise Expo South, Miami, Florida, January 1, 2008
  • “10 Commandments of Franchise Sales,” IFA’s Franchise Expo South, Miami, Florida, co-presenter, January 1, 2008
  • “Beyond Single Unit Franchising: Expanding Franchise Systems Through Multiple Unit and Third-Party Arrangements,” IFA’s Franchise Expo South, Miami, Florida, co-presenter, January 1, 2007
  • “Exporting Franchise and Distribution Networks: Avoiding the Snares of International Regulation,” Minnesota CLE Business Law Institute, Minneapolis, Minnesota, co-presenter, May 1, 2006


  • Quoted, "Burger King Caught in Complex Legal Web, Thwarting Russia Exit,The Economic Times, June 3, 2022. 
  • Co-Author, "Franchise Law Compliance Manual, 3rd Edition," American Bar Association, October 8, 2021
  • Co-Editor, "Global Franchise Regulation Update," Lathrop GPM, 2021-present
  • Chapter Co-Author, "Exemptions and Exclusions Under New York Law," Exemptions and Exclusions Under Federal and State Franchise Registration and Disclosure Laws, American Bar Association, Forum on Franchising, March 1, 2017
  • Author, "An Outline For Franchising Your Business," Enterprising Women March 15, 2011
  • Author, "Avoiding Comments When Preparing FDDs In 2009: Top Twelve Traps," The Franchise Lawyer, January 1, 2009
  • Co-author, "Outsourcing Franchise Sales: Growth Strategy Or Desperation Move," Franchise Times June 15, 2007
  • Co-author, "Franchise Expansion In China In The Aftermath Of China’s 2007 Franchise Regulation," International Bar Association's International Franchising Committee newsletter on Franchising in China, January 1, 2007
  • Author, "New Legislative Changes For Franchisors Doing Business In Canada," Franchising World, August 1, 2005

News Releases

Professional Affiliations

  • International Franchise Association, Planning Committee, 2020-2021
  • International Franchise Association’s Women’s Franchise Committee, past member
  • American Bar Association, Forum Committee on Franchising, International Division Steering Committee, past member
  • Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Wisconsin Bar Association
  • Women in Franchising Network, Twin Cities, former co-chair

Community Involvement

  • Minnesota Land Trust, board member
  • Minnesota Land Trust, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, chair
  • Advocates for Human Rights, volunteer attorney
  • Call for Justice, former board member


  • 2021 Flex Success® Award, Diversity & Flexibility Alliance, 2021
  • “North Star Lawyers,” Minnesota State Bar Association, 2019
  • The Best Lawyers in America©, 2018–2022
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Franchise, 2011–2022
  • Chambers Global, Franchising, 2013–2022
  • “Legal Eagle,” Franchise Times, 2007–2011, 2013–2020, 2022
  • “Minnesota Rising Star,” Thomson Reuters, 2007, 2009–2018
  • The International Who’s Who of Franchise Lawyers, 2013–2021
  • “Up and Coming Attorney,” Minnesota Lawyer, 2009
Photo of Liz  Dillon
  • Minneapolis

    80 South Eighth Street
    500 IDS Center
    Minneapolis, MN 55402
F: 612.632.4284


Michelle Rice

Court Memberships

  • Minnesota
  • Wisconsin


University of Wisconsin-Madison, J.D., cum laude, 2004

University of Wisconsin-Madison, with honors, 2001, undergraduate degree