7-ELEVEN Stole Our Store – Dev Patel’s Story
7-Eleven, Inc. seems to believe (in our opinion) that it can get away with seizing its franchisee’s stores at will… with no hearings, no appeal, no nothing.
At UnhappyFranchisee.Com, we are hearing an increasing number of disturbing stories of individuals and families who claim to have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars and years of their lives building up their 7-Eleven franchise stores, only to have them seized – with no compensation or chance to appeal – by the huge Tokyo-based corporation that then resells the franchises for a profit.
It appears to UnhappyFranchisee.Com that 7-Eleven, Inc. has appointed itself Judge, Jury and Enforcer over these people’s lives.
Sadly, 7-Eleven, Inc. seems to be getting away with it… for now.
Here is the story of the Patel family (below), who had their 7-Eleven franchise taken away from them after 19 years.
See the outpouring of support for them here: 7-ELEVEN Protest Over 7-11 Franchise Store Seizure (Pictures)
What do you think? Please share a comment below.
My name is Dev Patel.
My parents, Dilip and Saroj Patel, invested in and successfully operated the 7-Eleven franchise store at 5958 Magnolia Ave., Riverside, California for over 19 years.
They were suddenly forced out by 7-Eleven as part of 7-Eleven’s expansion campaign to take stores away without paying for the goodwill that had been create by the many years the franchise owners spent in promoting the 7-Eleven brand in their community.
7-Eleven called my parents on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 to ask them to come down to the office to meet about financials.
When my folks got there they were put into what amounted to an interrogation room by 7-Eleven loss prevention managers and told their store that they have owned for 19 years would be taken from them because they had engaged in “excess couponing.”
The loss prevention managers did not permit my parents time to consult with a qualified franchise attorney to protect their rights and, instead, told they had two options:
1) Turn the store over without compensation for their years of good will and pay $100k in damages; or
2) Face 7-Eleven filing a federal court suit seeking $250k in damages and still taking the store.
When we asked why this happened, they only ACCUSED my parents, didn’t PROVE, that we were committing coupon fraud. They showed a page of transactions that did not seem to prove anything and a short video clip (one time) to substantiate their claims. When we asked to see the video again because we could not determine that any wrongdoing had occurred, they would not show it to us for a second time.
My parents asked to have 24 hours to think about the situation, 7-Eleven REFUSED.
When I asked to fax or email a copy of 7-Eleven’s complaint to a friend of mine who had recently graduated law school, the loss managers again refused.
Then the loss prevention managers told my parents that if they left the building without signing over the store 7-11 would immediately file suit.
I got my friend to come down because I couldn’t contact a franchise attorney. My friend said this was above his head and asked for more time. 7-Eleven refused.
My mother became emotional, broke down and cried. In order to stop her pain, my father was COERCED into signing over a business that was worth at least $450,000.
7-Eleven used Gestapo tactics to force the store out of my parents’ hands.
I ran the Riverside store for the last few years during the periods of time 7-11 accused my parents of committing fraud.
I even asked 7-11 if my name was on any transaction list or if I was in any video committing fraud. They said I was NOT.
We were lied to, my customers were lied and the community was lied to.
Yesterday my customers told me that 7-11 corporate employees who took the store over lied to them by telling them my parents had “retired and sold the store back and that they didn’t want the store any longer.”
My parents didn’t retire. My parents definitely did not sell or commit any fraud.
In fact, 7-Eleven managers had encouraged them to liberally coupon and give away free merchandise to children in the nearby elementary school children for getting good grades!
We have since found out that 7-Eleven is trying to force out many older store owners on bogus grounds in order to get the stores for free and then to re-sell them as part of 7-Eleven’s expansion plans.
We love Riverside. We love our community. We love our customers.
Let’s tell 7-Eleven to stop robbing families like mine of the American Dream!
Thank you for listening.
– Dev Patel
Disclaimer: This account has been to provided to UnhappyFranchisee.com by Mr. Patel, and published verbatim. We have not independently verified his version of events. We have invited 7-Eleven, Inc. to provide their version of events, including any corrections, clarifications, statements, rebuttals they would like known. ADMIN
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TAGS: 7-Eleven, 7-Eleven franchise, 7-Eleven protest, 7-Eleven lawsuit, 7-11 franchise, 7-11 Riverside CA, 7-Eleven litigation, 7-eleven franchise complaints, Dev Patel, Dilip Patel, Saroj Patel, boycott 7-Eleven,
25 thoughts on “7-ELEVEN Stole Our Store – Dev Patel’s Story”
This is a sad story. It looks like there is no evidence of fraud. 7-11 kills their own market by himself. If Asian franchisees(Indian) leave 7-11, who will buy the store?
The franchisee who bought the store since last year will know the their profits is not enough comparing their effort, time, invested money, etc in a couple of years and realize the problems.
I don’t know about franchise law, but in real estate law if you can prove that a contract was signed under duress ( ie forced) you can have it nullified.
this is ridiculas. i thought we live in USA where even illeagal has rights. Shame on
No franchisee should sign any thing, even japnese gang threatens.
To the Patel family, you need to contact an experienced (no recent law grads) transactions attorney immediately. Without knowing the complete details of what happened it sounds like you may be able to undue any agreement you signed with 7-11 based on a couple of different legal theories. Some of my best childhood memories with my dad come from when he used to take me into your 7-11 for a slurpee after school. My dad still goes there simply because of the way your patriarch always treated him and his other customers, namely the kids at Magnolia Elementary. While showing damages for “good will” is very difficult, find someone who is experienced and likely willing to sit down and do a free consultation with you to assess whether it is worth your while to bring a suit. I wish you luck and will not return to that location until I hear that some justice has been done for your family.
That’s a shame.
I have lived a block from Patels 7-11 store for all of the years they have been there and have always received friendly and good service. I cannot believe this has been done to them in America. I know this is a good store as it has built up many, many regular customers from the neighborhood alone. My Son told me the store had been sold and there were new people there now. I accepted they must have retired. We do have a Gas Station on the opposite corner where I will get my morning coffee and newspaper and suggest others do the same until Patels take their store back again. SHAME ON 7-11. GREEDY CORPORATION for doing this to decent honest people whom this neighbors like and respect for many years.
Dev, I am so sorry to hear what 7-11 Corporate did. I would always go into 7-11 to purchase different items, especially the Pumpkin Spice. I was surprized one day when I walked into 7-11 and saw different employees. I asked if the franchise had been sold and all I was told was that Corporate had taken it over. Then I asked who the new Franchise owners were. Then I was told that it was not under a Franchise that it was 7-11 Corporation that owned it. The people seem nice but they do not know how to run the store. It is very sad how corporate disrespected your family and illegally stold the store from your family. I will not give any business to 7-11 anymore either. If all the community stops shopping at 7-11, Corporate will truely suffer and have no choice but to close down or return the store to Franchise ownership. By then I hope they realize what they did wrong and return the store to your family. Please tell your family “Hi” from the Leons. And keep us informed of any new information.
Should be easy to compare the yearly amount of slurpee mix delivered to the store is certainly not enough to make, sell and coupon cheat 75,000 slurpees
Also, since they have corporate cameras, it shoud be easy for your lawyer to obtain the recordings of each ‘offense’. 8 slurpees an hour 24/7 for 365 days huh
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If the company was taken illegally that’s an injustice. However, I lived in the area for 20+ years and would drive past that location to the one on Mongolia and Arlington because the service was so horrible. The store was always dirty and lacked the standards set by 7-11. Per conversations wIth other people I know I’m not alone on my option. Over the years I would return to see if there was a change but it remained the same, horrible. I read a few comments on how nice they were to customers and can only think they are written by friends and family of the owners.. Fraud is a serious accusation, especially $ 100,000. 7 -11 should be entitled to recoup their loss.
Amy: I don’t believe that cleanliness or service standards were mentioned as a factor or justification in the seizure of the Patel’s store.
Admin your right it wasn’t mentioned. I mentioned it when detaling my personal experience at their location.But what was mentioned was how they stole over 100,000 from 7 – 11 by means of coupon fraud.
This is felony extortion. File a criminal complaint with the DA’s office and have the people that pressured you like this arrested for fraud, extortion, criminal threat, then sue for intentional infliction of emotional distress, libel, slander, likely breach of contract, tortious interference of business, and much, much more.
Admin: Amy is talking about different store. The one in the story here is on Magnolia and Jurupa. She is talking about the store on Arlington which is less then a mile away from the one featured here.
To the Patels, I’ve been in your store several times and the generosity and cooperation that I received while there was above and beyond excellent. I was saddened to hear of what happened with you and your family store and heard all about the takeover and the drastic and unheard of methods used. I have since been in after the day you were forced out and the neighborhood and family atmosphere has disappeared. As far as any comment made regarding conditions of this store in particular, I can only say before judgement on this one, visits to other stores would be wise. And I say this because from being in many throughout CA and NV I’ve seen far worse and rest assured its not always the FZ’s fault because issues go reported to Corp and many times are overlooked or pushed to the side. Corp is focused on building new stores and equipping them with the best yet the older stores with owners who deserve to have some remodeling and updating done are pushed to the back. I’m sorry but something is wrong there. Patels and any other FZ’s facing similar circumstance, I sincerely wish you all the best and hope that in the end the Corp. will see fit to allow you your good neighborhood name.
Seven eleven franchise is not profitable anymore they take atleast $700 to $2900 per store every month and they don’t advertise at all plus they control the prises. They get kickbacks from vendors and don’t let frenchisee make profit. Example coke 20 oz seven eleven frsnchisee get $26.50 per case if you buy from costco $20.60 restorent depot $19:50 SAMs 20.60. Plus there sandwich they sell franchisee $2.09 then franchisee sell $2.99. They don’t let you buy outside plus donuts 2 for $1 glazed you get from them .94 cents and sell for $1. Get anything but seven eleven
Franchise system is being exploited by these Franchisers. The law is in favor of them. Do not get in any franchise unless you understand the fraud being explained here. Wish we knew these things happen in the US. Discovery Point franchise has ruined many lives and was allowed to do so.
This is for Dilip/Saroj/Dev: Couple of things you can do right away to expose their fraudulent business practices:
1. Make up some flyers explaining what had happened and how they stole your lively hood and distribute them to the people attending 7eleven seminars nationwide (go here for their upcoming nationwide seminar schedule > http://franchise.7-eleven.com/seminar%20sign-up/
2. Stand outside the 7eleven store that you used to own and distribute the same flyers to their customers. Educate the public!
This should put pressure on 7eleven executives to investigate the issue further.
How does anybody know that there was not any coupon fraud one does not not sign away a 19 year old business unless he was doing something wrong I know a lot of these small stores that are buying up people’s food stamps for half the cost and giving them cash for them so I can believe that coupon fraud could very well have been going on but as far as losing a store over it who is seven eleven to judge the consequences this matter should be dealt with in a court of law and first proven if in fact it did happen and then arrests should have been made none of this happened which seems to tell me that the patels were In fact doing something illegal and probably for a long time also to just sign over a 450000 dollar business without knowing that some rif raf was going on would be absurd
stay strong, justice will be served
Mr. Dilip & Mrs. Saroj,
My Family had a Seven Eleven in Orange County for over 20 years and they did a very similar thing we is as well. We fought with the Executives in Brea but they all ignored our requests and phone calls. Contact me at to get some further information. This is unfair and unconstitutional. I even contact the President of the Franchise Association for help..but they are all “one.”
Mr. Patel….how many years ago was this?
7 Eleven greedy corporation will Tumble one day like Barnie Madoff.
Was Bill Engen involved? I hear he is using some of these same tactics at Wingstop.