State Franchise Registration Status and Franchise Laws


Registration or Filing Required? Yes, Registration
Business Opportunity Laws? Yes

Indiana is a franchise registration state. So, you must register your FDD with the Securities Division of the Indiana Secretary of State prior to offering or selling franchises in the state. Indiana charges a $500 fee for the initial registration application and a $250 fee for renewal applications, which must be done annually. More information can be found on the Indiana Secretary of State Securities Website.

What Franchises Have to Register in Indiana?

The Indiana Franchise Act defines a franchise as “a contract by which a franchisee is granted the right to engage in the business of dispensing goods or services, under a marketing plan or system prescribed in substantial part by a franchisor; the operation of a franchisee’s business pursuant to such a plan is substantially associated with the franchisor’s trademark, service mark, trade name, logotype, advertising, or other commercial symbol designating the franchisor or its affiliate; and the person granted the right to engage in this business is required to pay a franchise fee.” Franchisors are required to register in Indiana if the franchisee is a resident of the state or if the franchised business will be operated in the state.

How Do I Register in Indiana?

To register your franchise in Indiana, you must submit the following documents using Indiana’s Online Securities Portal:

  1. The Franchise Disclosure Document
  2. Franchise Seller Disclosure Forms
  3. The Uniform Franchise Registration Application
  4. The Uniform Franchise Consent to Service of Process
  5. The $500 initial filing fee

Indiana does not review the disclosure documents after they are submitted. So, a franchisor’s registration becomes effective once the Division receives the filing. The registration is valid for one year from the date the application is received.

Do I Need to Renew My Registration?

Yes, franchisors must renew their registrations in Indiana every year. In order to renew a registration, the franchisor must submit the same documents they did for their initial registration, but the fee will only be $250. If a franchisor fails to submit their renewal application before the expiration of their registration, they must then file a new initial application along with the $500 initial filing fee.

Additionally, franchisor must submit a new copy of their FDD to the Division within 30 days of making any material changes to the document. There is no fee for filing the amendment, but at their option, franchisors can choose to submit it as an early renewal along with the other renewal documents.


Are There Other Laws in Indiana Related to Franchising?

Yes, in addition to the Franchise Act, which primarily relates to registration and disclosure documents, Indiana also has a Deceptive Franchise Practices Act that lays out prohibited practices designed to protect franchisees. For instance, franchisors cannot require a franchisee to agree to a non-compete clause with a duration longer than three years or a size greater than the exclusive area specified in the franchise agreement. Franchisors are also not allowed to establish their own outlets engaged in business that are similar to that of the franchise inside the territory granted exclusively to that franchisee. Additionally, franchisors must provide franchisees with 90 days’ notice of their intent to terminate or not renew the franchise agreement.

Fun Fact: Bet you didn’t know that there is a specific type of corn grown singularly for making popcorn. Bet you also didn’t know that 90% of that kind of corn is grown in Indiana!