UnhappyFranchisee.Com: A Support Group for Franchise Owners

UnhappyFranchisee.Com has been praised by many as an indispensable resource for franchisees and former franchisees.

Yet our website’s credibility and value is under constant fire from those who like franchising as it has been – with little to no transparency.

Have you found value in the posts and discussions on UnhappyFranchisee.Com?  If so, please leave a comment below, and enlighten those who seek to dismiss as a mere gripe site for those looking for someone else to blame for their failures.

UnhappyFranchisee.Com has played a critical role in helping them navigate and overcome the devastating emotional and financial hardships that resulted from their franchise investments.

Several former franchisees have told us that UnhappyFranchisee.Com literally played a role in saving their lives… by letting them know that they were not alone.

By connecting them with others who have faced the same adversities… and got through it.

And by directing them to resources that can help direct them through the greatest challenges that they and their families will ever have to endure.

UnhappyFranchisee.Com provides a safe and supportive forum where current and former franchise owners can share their views and experiences without divulging their identities.

We thank those who take the time to educate prospective franchisees as to how to avoid the mistakes they made… and provide encouragement and support to those who are grappling with the struggles they have overcome.

Has UnhappyFranchisee.Com been helpful in providing you with guidance and support during your franchise-related struggles?  Please share a comment below, or email us at UnhappyFranchisee[at]

“Thanks, UnhappyFranchisee.Com, for providing invaluable support.”

“this site is a wonderful place to come to for help and support… I believe the “world” needs to see and hear what the rest of us have suffered at the hands of these horrible people”  jmd

“I am just glad that I found this website… Still scary, but I’m really glad I’m not by myself in this.”  Casey

”During the past months, I have found you all to be a ‘Support Group.” Thank you. The different stories have made us realize we are not alone in dealing with a business failure.”  Change Stations Now


“I think this website has helped some of us start to heal from the humilating slap in the face [the franchisor] dealt many of us.”  Former Employee


“I am impressed with the participation of this site and the fact that it pops to the top of google search engines and is managed well.”  Trisha Grabert

“…it is somewhat comforting to know I’m not alone. I’m not sure I would have made it through this whole thing without losing my sanity if it hadn’t been for this site – so thank you ADMIN and everyone who posts here!”  udomatter

“I just now found this website, I thought I was the only one who was ripped off by these people. These people have screwed me out of so much money its not even funny.”  Dennis Braddock

“Love this site, pass it on to as many Liberty franchisees as possible.” mike

“This site is here to help those of us who lost our money to these companies” Guest

“Tell all current zees about this website!” mike

“I’m thankful to have found this website.”  Theresa

“…thanks to this site most owners are aware that the fear of retaliation from CI is just intimidation and nothing more…” unhappy

“I think it’s awesome that there’s a place for us to come together and vent and just be supportive. If nothing else, this site has been great for my wife and I because for a while there, we really felt alone.”  Ryan



TAGS: franchise, franchise opportunity, franchise complaints, franchise, franchise opportunity, franchise complaints, unhappy franchisee .

Tags: Unhappy Franchisee,, franchisees, franchise owners, franchise complaint sites, franchise complaints, franchise due diligence, franchise warnings, franchise failures, franchise problems, franchise disputes, franchise lawsuits, franchise forums, help for franchisees

19 thoughts on “UnhappyFranchisee.Com: A Support Group for Franchise Owners

  • SanFranDan

    When Franchises sell you a “dog and “pony” show and then subsequently throw you under the bus once you sign on the dotted line and then blackmail you with lots & lots of legal letters to make sure you promise not to not say anything bad about the Franchise or your experience, you feel all alone.

    Since finding this website, “”, I have been given a breath of fresh air. A place to vent, to warn others of my unfortunate experience and to have them be very careful not to fall into the same traps I did, it is a godsend.

    Many thanks to AMIN Sean for caring enough to start this blog and for all of us to realize we’re not alone. It was a horrendous experience being part of this franchise and I have happily turned away dozens of others from signing on to this incredibly dysfunctional franchise and hopefully saved them from a ton of grief.

    This website was MUCH NEEDED and very much appreciated. Keep up the good work, Sean! :)

  • Thanks SanFranDan. Thanks for your regular contributions and the camaraderie and support you show other owners. You are not only there for your fellow commenters, but for the many who read and don’t ever leave a comment.

  • What a great job this site is doing! I’m glad that we are able to help guide others into not making the same mistakes we did. Sean, it takes a lot of bravery to go after crooks like Liberty Tax. If there were a medal of honor for websites, this one surely deserves it! Keep up the good work.

  • Thanks Scammed1! You guys have posted nearly 2500 comments and definitely have the ear of management. Keep commenting and change will come.

  • I cannot say enough good things about Sean Kelly. For the past seven years Sean has been an inspiration to me and has shown me that there is no higher calling for an attorney that standing up to franchise bullies. I took on a large franchisor on behalf of several defrauded franchisees. I was up against a mega lawfirm with unlimited resources and definitely in over my head. However, Sean took the time to talk to me and let me know I was on the right track. In the end, my clients were vindicated.
    He has not done it for the money. He’s done it because it’s the right thing to do. Now, these bullies are finally taking notice. Are they trying to improve their systems? No. They are suing and threatening Sean. For what? For giving franchisees a voice and exposing the fraud? I ask all of you who have benefitted from this site to closely monitor it over the next month or so. Sean has already been sued by one unscrupulous company for exposing the truth and other systems are making veiled threats that additional suits will be coming. I know that I will not sit back quietly while con men and thieves try to silence you, the franchisees. I hope you will join me in that fight.

  • Trisha Grabert

    This site is very sentimental to me. I found support when needed and have been able to help others when I thought I could not even help myself. I cannot imagine how I would have coped without finding this website and all the active participation from everyone to answer posts or questions.

    I felt alone. I felt hopeless. I felt heartbroken. I felt fear. I felt abused. I felt humiliated. I felt intimidated. I felt weak. These people embraced me with the others and helped me. They gave me find strength, courage, comfort and hope. I thank them all and I thank you Sean Kelly!
    I can never repay you for even one night of peace you made possible for me.


  • Fair and balanced is what comes to my mind when thinking of the unhappy franchisee. All parties involved in the discussion are given the opportunity to voice there thoughts, experiences and opinions. This process gives a community vibe where one is given the opportunity to speak in an open arena and others are given the chance to respond in a fashion that allows everyone to have a voice.

  • Franchise scam

    This site has been a staple in my brain. Sean has done a great job. I am there for you anytime Sean.

  • I was very disappointed with my decision on the franchise I chose, and I lost a lot of time and money. All because I was misled from the start. Through this site, I realized I am not alone, and that a lot of similar situations exist. Nothing can change the past, but with the other franchisee experiences I’ve read, I was able to learn some valuable insights and suggestions on how to move forward. Thank you unhappy franchise for having this site I only wish I found it much sooner!!

  • Rebel Ron

    It shouldn’t be any doubt about the importance of the service provided by the UF site.

    Why do we need the UF site? We lost our retirement savings, we lost our houses, and our course of life will never be the same. We come here to tell the truth and our bitter story. UF is the only place where the voice of VICTIMIZED FRANCHISEES is being heard. Regrettably, there are many of us and the number seems to grow. I would make UF site a mandatory stop for anybody thinking to invest in a franchise business.

    The UF site will close down only when the franchise business will get rid of those who tarnish the “franchise” name: the deceiving, unscrupulous and dishonest franchisors. My prediction? It is not going to happen soon…

    Rebel Ron

  • Thank you for being the light in a very dark place. I wish I had known about this site before I signed my life away, if I had been able to read the posts it would have helped me be better informed and prevented all this devastation. Its important to keep the truth out there, hopefully others can be saved. This site represents what greed and bad business practices do to people, how lives are destroyed….shame on anyone who thinks its just a place to whine, if you have a heart or conscious at all and read the pain, loss, suffering, fear, that fill these pages you would know this is a place that shouldnt have to exist, but it does because of all the greed and lack of heart that runs unchecked in these companies. Only those who dont want truth exposed, who have something to hide, who are hardened by their own self deception, due to their continued self justification and lack of accountability to whats fair and humane oppose this site! If they truly thought it was just whining, then they wouldnt be upset by it, but they really dont believe that themselves, they are upset because they know the cat is out of the bag! Because of them we are here, and here is where we will stay, to continue to bind the wounds of each individual, and offer whatever help we can, because we are human, and our hearts feel the pain. Thank you for being here.

  • We who either owned a franchise or still do own a franchise need to form an organization to get our concerns heard. Through this site you see that many of the franchises suffer from the same issues and yet we have no collective voice.
    Franchiser’s should be required to give a franchise disclosure document and section 19 – Earnings Claim should be standardized and based on all their locations. The idea that they can cherry pick this information is an outright abuse.
    As I said in the past just like states inacted blue sky laws for the sale of stock
    there should be similar legislation for franchising.

    Everytime I see a commercial for $3.99 meal at Subway or $5.00 Pizza at Papa John’s it just shows how the franchisor has so little disregard for the franchisee. As a small business accountant I know that this type of pricing most hurt the bottom line of all their franchisees and kills the ones on the fringe.

    Franchising flourishes because the average person feels that they have an advantage through franchising but this isn’t bared out in the statistics. Without size and scale there are very fee individual franchise that flourish.

  • Sean has been nothing but helpful in the pursuit of our franchisor. It’s nice to see someone so committed to helping the “little guy”. Most corporations want to help the big guy even if it means stepping on others to make money. This has not only been a savior for franchisees but also to former franchise employees. You ever realize on the other side there is also employees that are being treated just as bad. Sean has created an open forum for owners and former owners, employees and former employees to vent or notify others of issues and be completely anonymous and not have to worry about backlash from th franchisor or it’s emplouees.

  • anonymous

    Everything posted on this website about the Franchisor Dickey’s Barbecue is accurate and true.

    If only we had known of Sean’s website before we lost our life savings, our house, our minds and our dignity at the hands of the predatory Franchisor Dickey’s Barbecue.

  • I’ve been out since 2009 and it still frustrates me.

    Posting to this site was one of the best ways I had of dealing with my anger and frustration.

  • SanFranDan

    ^^Hi Bill! :)

    You’re not kidding. This site was the best thing that happened. Thank you ADMIN!!

    When I look at other posts from other franchisees, even in other businesses, it’s almost all the same. The bullying tactics, the marketing ploys, the lack of support…………….those 5 years were MISERABLE. It wasn’t until very recently that I felt ‘free’ from their tangle of lies. Years & years later. And I had my 5 year contract even before Bill!

    That’s how long the stress has been unbearable. All because I signed on the dotted line…

    Way at the beginning when there was no “unhappy franchisee” and way before I knew just how bad it would get. How the gov’t let’s these franchises get away with this, I’ll never know. Maybe ADMIN can shed some light as to how these franchises can legally do what they’re doing and get away with it.

  • Any and all of this ordeal of “living the dream” as it’s called is to cover the real term of “it’s a nightmare”

    1. Find a damn good business lawyer and hand him a copy of the FDD to look over. Make sure it’s read in it’s entirety. If any questions arise, which will be multiples, that’s when the lawyer can contact the swindler “recruiter” the company has as a “hyped up guinea pig” to sell it to you claiming it’s a ‘gold mine” waiting on you.

    The lawyer can bust his balls in a short period of time with “real time” questions on why the franchisee is getting railroaded according to the FDD. Most newbies won’t do this OR won’t read every page in the 400+ page novel that the FDD is comprised of. Shows laziness already and they see it.

    If you’re not doing your homework prior to starting a business, how in the hell are thinking you’re going to make it out there when the odds are worse than a gambling casino against you?
    The lack of homework already shows the “fast talkers” at the tool companies what kind of dim witt they have waiting to set the hook in.

    Remember, these tool crony managers have been through their companies “negativity training” and have all the “good” answers to combat your questions. They’re all in it for a bonus and you’re the meat waiting to get a bonus from.

    The crony managers make bonuses in multiple ways so don’t think it’s just selling the franchisee tools at a meeting or national promotion or planned annual purchase programs. Yes, these cronies are pushed liked a snow plow from above them to make outlandish numbers to keep the “funnel” full as they term it to keep the mighty cronies at the top making mega millions every year as a salary.

    It’s not that difficult to figure out if the newbie or interested would take the time and RESEARCH what they have in front of them compared to the ‘charged up” excitement the “recruiter phoney” got you hyped into believing. Remember, he also makes a bonus for you signing up as well. Franchisee fees!

    So, with that said you see everyone in the ladder above the franchisee is at each others throats with outlandish numbers to achieve to continue growth and expenses as the world turns everyday.
    Don’t expect these managers to have a personality either. That don’t give a rats ass about you and it’s all about the numbers for a bonus for them.

    These positions allow no time for them to be a “real person” just, a walking calculator and like a robot. The ideology of “we’re a numbers based business, it’s all about the numbers” is all they walk and talk. Sales, sales, sales, sales, sales, money, money, money, money, money all done for me a fuck you in the end.

    Posted are comments from some that have been in it for 20 years plus but, fail to tell you all the bullshit + some, compared to the benefits they have dealt with over that time period. They all look like their 80 when their only 60 years old. We call bullshit on those who say these claims. No day is a easy day out there and the higher pressure the programs the company develops damn near takes an Army to complete the tasks. Don’t believe the “old timers” hyped bullshit. They’re doing something other than the company’s “buy, sell and replenish” program laid out.

    Seriously, you will have some much shit coming at you just from the product line of “wheeling and dealing” managers you’ll way too much for one person to grasp and manage effectively IF done the way they lay it out. Too many chiefs and not enough indians and you’re the indian. Don’t fall prey to it.

    Thinking of war movies or flash mob riots are planned as mass attack of the people / product in such volumes you can’t keep up with the people or bullets coming at you and no support to help you thin it out to survive the onslaught of shit thrown at you. This is no bullshit folks.

    Remember, you have no friends in this type of business, only competition and enemies plus possible other jealous franchisees within your FPT group. So, back to what was said back at the start, you’re in a “no win” situation from the start and the “house always wins”

    Advice to you about starting a tool franchise – Not no, but, HELL NO.

    I still question why “King” threw himself back into the fire with Cornwell after getting his eyeballs fucked out with the “champ” Snap-On?

    Some serious crazy shit reasoning had to be in play here, if you ask us.

    To be continued:

  • There used to be other sites, but they all got shut down or buried or went offline. I had hundreds of posts, many from our day to day issues when I was a 1-800-radiator aka radiator express franchisee.

    The only thing that remains is this piece of advice that probably everyone here can agree with:
    If you really think a particular franchise is for you, just do this simple thing and you’ll know without losing your home or worse–go work for an existing franchisee who doesn’t know you and you don’t know. Do it for a year. I guarantee that within that year, you will know more about the ins and outs of that franchise than any other way. And instead of losing your savings, you’ll get paid to boot. If in the end, you can see yourself there, great. But if you don’t, you walk away a lot more whole than getting in bed with the wrong company who will rob you blind.

    Best wishes to everyone out there.

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