Category Archives: Changes In Law

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DOMA goes down – Copyright goes up – U.S. v. Windsor, Supreme Court, No. 12-307, decided June 26, 2013

The Supreme Court handed down a far reaching decision throwing out an attempt by Congress to deny the benefits conferred by federal law on same sex couples legally married under state law holding that the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”), as so applied, constituted a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons protected by the … Continue Reading

“Reforming Retail: India Allows FDI in Multi-Brand Retail”

On September 14, 2012, the Indian government announced that it would relax restrictions on foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail. India—a country that traditionally excluded foreign investment—opened its doors to global supermarkets, such as Wal-Mart and Tesco. While the decision still must clear bureaucratic hurdles, American retailers welcome the opportunity to capitalize on one … Continue Reading

Beauty Is In The Eye Of The Beholder And New Commercial Privacy Legislation Is Before The U.S. Senate

On April 12, 2011, United States Senators John Kerry and John McCain formally proposed the Kerry-McCain Commercial Privacy Bill of Rights Act of 2011 ("CPBRA"). This proposed legislation would apply to all retailers, including those in the fashion, beauty, and apparel industries, that request and record their customers’ personal information. If passed in its current form, the … Continue Reading

An End to “Greenwashing?”: The Federal Trade Commission’s Efforts to “Wash Away” Deceptive Advertising

As it becomes increasingly common to find "green" environmentally-friendly products on retailers’ shelves, the Federal Trade Commission is taking active steps to guarantee the legitimacy of "green" labeling and ensure that such labels do in fact represent accurate descriptions of the products’ environmental benefits. Consequently, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is about to release updated … Continue Reading

FCPA: The Latest Trend in Fashion

Hardly a day passes without new revelations about global FCPA investigations. In just the past ten days, cases involving companies as diverse as Hewlett-Packard, BHP Billiton and Avon have been reported. Earlier this year 22 individuals were arrested simultaneously on two continents in a global FCPA sting operation, the first of its kind. The U.S. Department of Justice … Continue Reading

New Trucking Rules Could Make Goods Fashionably Late

In a recent decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia overturned the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) truck diver Hours of Services ("HOS") rule that regulates the amount of time commercial truck drivers can operate their vehicles (Owner-Operator v. FMCSA, 494 F.3d 188 (D.C. Cir. 2007)).  The current HOS rules, … Continue Reading

New Cargo Screening Requirement Could Import High Costs To Fashion And Apparel Industry

Congress gave final approval to legislation that requires stricter screening of sea cargo containers bound for the U.S. at foreign ports.  The bill will implement many of the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission to strengthen national security and help to prevent terrorist attacks (click here for full text of this bill).  The bill has been … Continue Reading

New EU Chemicals Regulation Could Peel Away Fashion and Cosmetic Industry Profits

On June 1, 2007, the controversial new EU Regulation for the Registration, Evaluation and Restriction on Chemicals (“REACH”) came into force to regulate the use of chemicals in consumer products, including apparel, fragrances and cosmetics.  The regulation’s most important goals are to improve the protection of human health and the environment while enhancing the innovative … Continue Reading

Senate Goes Fashion Forward With Latest Version of Design Piracy Prohibition Act

On August 2, 2007, Senator Orrin Hatch announced S. 1957, a bill intended to provide protection for fashion designs.  In his comments introducing the draft legislation, Senator Hatch noted that the goal of the legislation "is to ensure that those who spend their time and money developing new and innovative fashion designs are able to … Continue Reading

H.R. 5055: A (Possible) Statutory Framework for Protecting Fashion Designs Under U.S. Copyright Law

Under U.S. Copyright law, copyright protection generally does not extend to fashion designs, such as the dimensions, style, cut or shape of a fashion item like clothing.  However, original patterns or images that are imprinted or stitched on fabric are protected by copyright.  A recent bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives that … Continue Reading
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