• March 15, 2010

Jani-King sells commercial cleaning franchises to individuals (and, from the names of plaintiffs, appear to have had something of a foothold in the Minnesota Hmong community along with other immigrant communities).

Proposed class action plaintiffs felt deceived by defendants Jani-King of Minnesota, Jani-King International and others, alleging that (1) many of the accounts offered to them were underbid to the extent that they were not profitable; (2) they were offered accounts that were prohibitively inconvenient in their geographic locations; (3) the same accounts were offered to multiple franchisees who then had to compete against each other for the business; (4) they were required to immediately accept an account when it was offered; and (5) accounts were taken away from them under the manufactured claim that the franchisee’s cleaning or janitorial services were not up to standard.

U.S. District Court Judge Ann Montgomery (D. Minn.) won’t hear the merits plaintiffs’ claims as a class action. ¬†Adopting the reasoning of¬†the U.S. District Court, D. Mass., in “a very similar action by Jani-King franchisees against Jani-King,” De Giovanni v. Jani-King International. Inc ., 262 F.R.D. 71 (D. Mass. 2009), Judge Montgomery held, “In sum, resolution of the class members’ breach of contract claims will require individualized inquiries that will overwhelm common questions.”

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