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in government, a right specifically conferred on a group or individual by a government, especially the privilege conferred by a municipality on a corporation of operating public utilities, such as electricity, telephone, and bus services. Franchises may not be revoked without the consent of the grantee unless so stipulated in the contract. They may, however, be forfeited by the grantee's violation of terms, and the government may take back granted rights by eminent domain proceedings with tender of just compensation. Franchise provisions usually include tenure; compensation to the grantor; the services, rates, and extensions; labor and strike regulations; capitalization; and reversion to the grantor.

The term franchise also refers to a type of business in which a group or individual receives a license from a corporation to conduct a commercial enterprise. Corporate franchises enable a franchisee to market a well-known product or service in return for an initial fee and a percentage of gross receipts. The franchiser usually provides assistance with merchandising and advertising. Major franchise networks, which have grown rapidly in the United States since the 1960s, include fast-food restaurants, gasoline stations, motels, automobile dealerships, and real-estate agencies, and the system has expanded into many other fields.

In politics, the franchise is the right conferred on an individual to vote. In the United States, the states, with some restrictions by the U.S. Constitution, govern the qualifications of voters. By the Fourteenth and Fifteenth amendments, states were forbidden to deny suffrage to male residents over 21 years of age "on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude." The Nineteenth Amendment conferred suffrage upon women, and the Twenty-sixth Amendment lowered the voting age to 18. See votingvoting,
method of registering collective approval or disapproval of a person or a proposal. The term generally refers to the process by which citizens choose candidates for public office or decide political questions submitted to them.
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See C. Williamson, American Suffrage from Property to Democracy, 1760–1860 (1960, repr. 1968); C. L. Vaughn, Franchising (1974).


1. the right to vote, esp for representatives in a legislative body; suffrage
2. any exemption, privilege, or right granted to an individual or group by a public authority, such as the right to use public property for a business
3. Commerce authorization granted by a manufacturing enterprise to a distributor to market the manufacturer's products
4. the full rights of citizenship
5. Films a film that is or has the potential to be part of a series and lends itself to merchandising
References in periodicals archive ?
Meet with a business consultant and a lawyer who specializes in franchises to help you evaluate your concept.
There's very little up-to-date, active management of these franchises.
The bill, introduced by State Senator Al Lawson, aims to come up with a definition for C&D that would give handlers of this material some relief from the onus that franchises have on their company.
To make his point, Birkeland examines three different franchises, which he dubs King Cleaners, Star Muffler, and Sign Masters.
The initial Entrepreneur's Franchise 500 [R] in 1980 was the first ranking of franchises in the industry and is still the best and most comprehensive rating of franchises in the world.
chairman of the House Committee on Small Business, heads the movement to increase the regulation of franchises at the federal level.
1253 (d)(2) has since been amended to provide that a 10-year amortization period is available only for franchises with a cost of $100,000 or less.
Founded in 1964, Del Taco operates or franchises more than 490 restaurants in 14 states.
The committee plans to launch four additional chapters in 2006 while also creating a new mentoring program through which seasoned executives will provide advice and support for new franchises.
From cocada to churros, franchises give boost to Venezuela.
Franchises are an obvious choice for people who want to be on their own without entirely giving up corporate support and structure.