The Legacy Academy daycare franchise and its founders, Melissa and Frank Turner, have garnered some pretty unflattering press on UnhappyFranchisee.Com.
We reported that it appeared that the Legacy Academy franchise company has had as many franchisee lawsuits as it has open centers (11).
We reported that “In 2010, the Superior Court of Gwinnett County confirmed an arbitration award finding Legacy had given ‘misleading financial information’ to prospective franchisees, awarding five (5) former franchisees more than $1 million in damages and rescinding both $1 million in promissory notes and their franchise agreements.”
We reported that “After hearing a case presented by attorney Cary Ichter, the jury concluded that Legacy and its owners and officers—Frank and Melissa Turner—had engaged in at least two acts of theft by deception, which is a criminal offense.
“As of April, 2013, Legacy was involved in five (5) other lawsuits with former Legacy franchisees, all of whom are represented by Ichter Thomas, LLC, and all of who have similar claims alleging fraud and/or a pattern of racketeering activity.”
We also voiced our concern as to whether Legacy Academy and Melissa & Frank Turner have altered their franchise marketing and sales approach in light of these lawsuits.
Despite multiple franchisee failures and lawsuits, the Legacy Academy website uses terms like “very profitable return,” “our very successful Daycare Franchises,” and states that franchising “is one of the most secure forms of business operation available…”
We were (and are) interested in what the company thinks of our observation that Legacy Academy doesn’t seem to have reverted to the highly conservative franchise marketing messages one would expect after being litigated for misleading and deceptive claims.
[Photo, left, Legacy Academy sign, Snellville, GA. Photo credit: John Robert Conley. License: Creative Commons]
Legacy Academy Asked for Their Side of the Story
Every company and every individual discussed on UnhappyFranchisee.com has the right to address allegations, opinions or other statements made about them, and provide corrections, clarifications or rebuttals.
That’s our policy.
We are all about hosting a dialogue, and letting readers decide for themselves.
When the news is as unflattering as Legacy Academy’s, we often make a special effort to give the company a chance to respond.
In the case of Legacy Academy and Melissa & Frank Turner, we not only included the invitation in our post, we submitted it to them August 9, 2013 via the web form on their website.
We received this confirmation by email:
Thank You For Contacting Legacy Academy – Corporate
Legacy Academy firstname.lastname@example.org via worldsecuresystems.com
Dear Unhappy Franchisee,
Thank you for contacting us at Legacy Academy – Corporate. One of our Legacy team members will contact you shortly. Below is the details of your form submission!
Summary of web form submission:
Unhappy Franchisee 555-555-5555
123 Unhappy Drive
Unhappy, GA 30518
Reason For Contacting Us?
Press Inquiry: Legacy Academy on UnhappyFranchisee.Com, response requested
Please forward to the principals of Legacy Academy.
UnhappyFranchisee.Com is a franchise issues discussion site that invites commentary on franchisor/franchisee disputes. Our goal is to give both sides of a dispute the opportunity to present their views, and let our readers decide for themselves. Legacy Academy has been mentioned in two recent posts:
LEGACY ACADEMY Franchise Complaints http://www.unhappyfranchisee.com/legacy-academy-franchise-complaints/
LEGACY ACADEMY Ichter Thomas Wins Suit for Legacy Academy Franchise Owners http://www.unhappyfranchisee.com/legacy-academy-ichter-thomas-wins-lawsuit/
We invite Legacy Academy to provide us with a rebuttal, explanation, clarification or other statement regarding these franchisee complaints that we will publish with the same prominence as the original posts. We have also be interested in knowing what changes you have made in your franchise sales process and franchisee relations efforts as a result of these lawsuits.
Feel free to also encourage your franchisees, customers, employees or associates to post positive comments of support in the comment sections that follow each post.
Legacy Academy: 5 Months of Silence, Then a Legal Threat
After inviting Legacy Academy to address the unflattering press on UnhappyFranchisee.Com, and inviting them to publicize positive steps they have taken to avoid future litigation, we did not hear a peep from them for over 5 months.
Then, on January 24, 2014, we received a letter from Legacy Academy’s attorney, M. Kathleen Hart of Andersen, Tate & Carr, P.C.
We will post Ms. Hart’s letter, as well as our response(s) shortly, so check back soon.
Read more about the Legacy Academy franchise:
Disclosure: The Ichter Thomas law firm are featured in the UnhappyFranchisee.Com Franchisee Attorney Directory.
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TAGS: Legacy Academy, Legacy Academy franchise, Legacy Academy child care, Legacy Academy lawsuit, Legacy Academy franchise complaints, Legacy Academy franchise lawsuits, M. Kathleen Hart, Attorney Kathleen Hart, Anderson Tate & Carr, Frank Turner, Melissa Turner, Unhappy Franchisee