7-Eleven settles franchisee class actions

By Sarah Stowe | 05 Jul 2021 View comments

7-Eleven has agreed to settle franchisee class actions following mediation.

A statement from the convenience chain confirmed the settlement but gave no insight into the details of the agreement.

“7-Eleven can confirm that a non-binding in principle agreement to settle the class actions has been reached, subject to terms of a settlement deed being agreed and subject to approval of the Federal Court of Australia.

“The settlement follows mediation between the parties on 24, 25 and 29 June 2021,” said 7-Eleven.

It’s been a rollercoaster ride since the class actions were mooted back in 2017.

In February 2018 Stewart Levitt, senior partner at Levitt Robinson Solicitors which was acting for the franchisees, filed a claim in the Federal Court.

The group of current and former franchisees alleged misleading and deceptive conduct, unconscionable conduct and contract breaches by 7-Eleven, and alleged the ANZ bank had provided loans that were unsustainable.

Levitt Robinson believed “substantial damages” could be available.

However, the law firm had its knuckles metaphorically rapped when it was forced to retract statements made to franchisees in 2017.

In 2019 the class action hit a road block when the court accepted an undertaking from the convenience chain.

According to Lawyerly, an in-principle settlement was approved in August 2020 between ANZ and the applicants.

The class actions against 7-Eleven continued with a trial set for winter 2021. Lawyerly reported in May this year a judge rejected a proposal by the convenience chain for a pre-trial ruling and mediation took place in late June.

Levitt Robinson has been contacted for comment.