Philip Zeidman devotes his practice to domestic and international distribution, licensing and franchising law. He served as General Counsel to the International Franchise Association throughout his career. He was the first Chairman of the American Bar Association Antitrust Law Section's Distribution and Franchising Committee and served as Chairman of the International Bar Association's International Franchising Committee and as chairman of the Franchise Committee of the American Intellectual Property law Association.

Philip has been admitted to practice before the US Supreme Court and in the District of Columbia, New York, Florida and Alabama. He graduated with honors from Yale College, where he was named Scholar of the First Rank and was Managing Editor of the Yale Banner Publications. At Yale he received both the Jonathan Davenport Award and the William Houston McKim Award. He was elected Chairman of the Class Council of his class at Yale, received its first Distinguished Service Award and was named its representative to the Association of Yale Alumni. He received his law degree from Harvard University and also studied at the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration. Philip has served as a member of the advisory board of the Yale School of Organization and Management; as a trustee of the Yale-China Association; and as a member of the advisory board of the DeWitt Wallace Center for Communications and Journalism of the Terry Sanford Institute for Public Policy of Duke University.

Philip is counsel to a number of US and foreign companies and trade associations. He served as Special Counsel to the Japan Franchise Association. He has engaged in an international transactional practice, testified before governmental bodies, participated in judicial and administrative proceedings, taught at universities and appeared before business and professional groups in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, the Czech Republic, England, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, the People's Republic of China, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Serbia-Montenegro, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and before the Commission of the European Union as well as before numerous US congressional committees.

Philip has been retained to advise a number of international governmental organizations on techniques for international development and for the privatization of state-owned enterprises-by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (Paris), for work in Central and Eastern Europe; by the World Intellectual Property Organization (Geneva), to assist in the development of its Franchising Guide for Developing Countries; by the International Center for Public Enterprises (Ljubljana), to help create an international franchising databank for use in transitional economies; by the International Executive Service Corps, to introduce franchising into Morocco; by UNIDROIT, a UN-affiliated agency (Rome), to advise on the regulation of international franchising; by the US Agency for International Development (for work with the Indian government, to assist black entrepreneurs in post-apartheid South Africa, and to assist the privatization agencies of the former Soviet Union); and by the Middle East Investment Initiative to introduce franchising to Tunisia; and by the World Bank, to advise on legal impediments to cross-border franchising.

He served as a Trial Lawyer for the Federal Trade Commission; General Counsel to the Small Business Administration (when he was named to that position, at age 30, he was the youngest chief legal officer of any department or agency of the federal government); and Special Assistant to the Vice President of the United States. Politically, in addition to serving the Vice President, he was a speech writer in two presidential campaigns; Executive Director of the Democratic Platform Committee in a third; and traveled with Governor Jimmy Carter as an advisor to him throughout his successful general election campaign.


Philip Zeidman has received Who's Who Legal's Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his "vast contributions to the practice of franchise law and consistently outstanding performance" in the publication’s annual rankings. Who's Who Legal, which surveys private attorneys and corporate counsel in order to rank lawyers in specific disciplines, named Philip Zeidman Global Franchise Lawyer of the Year for nine consecutive years, every year the award had been given, reporting that he "received more votes from clients and peers than any other individual worldwide." Quoting from those interviewed the publication referred to him as "terrific," "immensely talented," "one of the best commercial franchise lawyers ever" and "without doubt, the number one franchise practitioner in the world."

Chambers Global and Chambers USA, which conduct a similar survey, reached the same assessment, that Philip is "the best known lawyer in the world on the international front," "revered as the king of kings in the franchising industry," "with an encyclopedic knowledge of franchise law." "You'd have to be blind, deaf and dumb to not know Philip Zeidman." Simply put, he is "Mr. Franchising."

Additional Honors

  • Listed in Marquis Who's Who in America
  • Listed in Marquis Who's Who in American Law
  • Rated AV by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America
  • Named Best Lawyers' 2012 Washington, DC Franchise Law Lawyer of the Year
  • Washington, DC Super Lawyer
  • Global Franchise Lawyer of the Year 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006 and 2005, International Who's Who of Business Lawyers
  • Recipient, William Rosenberg Leadership Award, the International Franchise Association's highest honor
  • First Recipient, "International Franchise Association's Dennis Wieczorek Free Enterprise Award," 2016 (video link)
  • Listed in Franchise Times' "Legal Eagles," as one of the top franchise lawyers in the US and Canada