Sean O'Donnell

Sean O'Donnell


Automotive, Dispute Resolution, Retail and Franchising

Sydney & Norwest

+61 2 9334 8451

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Sean is a skilled dispute resolution lawyer with many years' experience resolving complex franchising and commercial disputes in a broad range of industries. His practice is national and he regularly assists clients with interstate disputes and litigation. 

Sean is sought after for his experience and skills in effectively managing and resolving sensitive commercial disputes and complex litigation for the benefit of his clients. He is proud of his proven track record of resolving complex disputes without necessarily requiring protracted litigation. His broad experience includes matters involving misleading and deceptive conduct, unconscionable conduct, fraud claims, lease disputes, construction disputes, security enforcement and insolvency claims.

Sean is best known for his specialised expertise within the franchising sector. He is currently the President of the NSW Chapter of the FCA and a director of the FCA National board. Sean advises franchisors about their legal responsibilities under the Code and is acutely aware of the commercial and competitive pressures facing his clients and the franchise sector. His dispute and mediation experience allow him to work with his clients to develop effective strategies to protect the franchise brand and system and successfully resolve disputes.

Sean has extensive advocacy experience, including successfully defending a franchisor in a Federal Court class action which was the first of its type run in the 'fast track' list of the Federal Court. Recently he has assisted a number of clients with regulatory investigations by the ACCC and ASIC. He has also assisted a number of franchisees to resolve disputes with their franchisors. He is an accredited mediator and has participated in numerous OFMA mediations and commercial mediations.


  • Contract interpretation and disputes;
  • Dispute resolution and litigation;
  • Competition and trade practices;
  • Franchising; and
  • Insolvency, recovery and restructuring.


  • Bachelor of Arts
  • Bachelor of Laws (Honours)
  • Accredited mediator

Professional Memberships

  • National Director and President of the NSW Chapter of the Franchise Council of Australia
  • FCA National Legal Committee
  • Law Society of NSW