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Fashion law, also called apparel law, is an up-and-coming legal field that covers concerns surrounding the fashion business and industry, such as from the conception of an apparel to the protection of the brand. Clients of fashion law include fashion designers, manufacturers, distributors, retailers, fashion houses, modeling agencies, as well as photographers.
Duties and Obligations of a Fashion Lawyer
Fashion lawyers counsel clients on legal concerns facing the industries of fashion, textile, footwear, jewelry, cosmetics as well as other sectors involved in fashion. This includes legal concerns from merchandising, licensing, distribution, intellectual property, agreements on franchising, employment, as well as issues on labor relation. It also involves sustainability, safety and concerns on consumer protection.
Fashion lawyers carry out an extensive gamut of duties such as drafting contracts, negotiating agreements, litigating trademark and copyright, as well as other issues on intellectual property. Fashion lawyers are responsible for creating and dissolving business units as well as advising on dvelping nd protecting brands.
The Growth of Fashion Law
The internet and digital age has aggravated or worsened numerous of the legal concerns and disputes encountered by fashion designers and companies, pushing up the need for legal advice and protection that is fashion-specific.
In recent years, design piracy as well as copycat litigation, for instance, has increased, bringing about new law or legislation that gives legal protection for designs in fashion. These types of issues and legislation are of great value to individuals and businesses in the industry of fashion.
For example, Charles Schumer, senator of New York, presented in August 2010 the Innovative Design Protection and Piracy Protection Act (IDPPPA), which protects designs that are considered to be “original” and “unique.”
Breaking into the Fashion Law Field
Although this field is growing, only a small number of law firms focus in this area. Finishing courses and programs in fashion law, business and finance, intellectual property, international trade, consumer culture, and government regulation could also give you a foundation that may increase your likelihoods of finding employment in this field. Moreover, volunteering to help in offering legal services fashion community that is pro bono is another approach to acquire contacts as well as related experience.