In a major move by California that may be but a harbinger of a dramatic sea change in banning or severely restricting the inclusion of hundreds of chemicals present in every-day consumer goods, California just imposed upon the consumer product industry (culminating, at least most likely for 2021, right before the end of October), a sweeping range of bans that likely will fundamentally disrupt the California consumer product economy.
Continue Reading No Treats, Too Many Tricks, For PFAS This Halloween

Legislation passed by the U.S. Senate on May 6, 2013 would impose sales tax collection obligations on retailers with no physical presence in a state but would not provide a needed income tax safe harbor. 

In what may prove to be one of its most bi-partisan moments in recent years, the U.S. Senate passed S. 743 (The Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013) by a large margin: 69 – 27. The Bill would require remote sellers with more than $1 million in total sales to collect sales taxes in states that adopt sales tax simplification measures. These simplification measures require one-stop tax compliance, one-stop auditing, standardization of what is subject to tax, and 90-day notice of rate changes. 

Logic tells us that virtually every state will adopt these sales tax simplification measures, at least for remote sellers. This is a development that over time may lead to sales tax simplification for all sellers.    
Continue Reading Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013: Where Is The Income Tax Safe Harbor?

Current United States Copyright Law does not protect the overall appearance of fashion design.  However, if the sponsors of a pending Senate bill have their way, that might change in the near future.

Copyright law protects original works of authorship but expressly does not protect what are known as “useful articles.”   Unfortunately for fashion designers, the definition of  “useful articles” includes much of what is thought of as fashion design.  As a result, while it is sometimes possible to obtain copyright protection for a discrete, original and non-useful design that is sewn onto a dress, it typically is not possible to protect the appearance of the dress itself.  This has had a profound effect upon the fashion and retail industry because it effectively precludes copyright protection for the appearance of designer clothing, handbags, shoes and the like.  While this situation is bad for designers it is beneficial to many retail stores that are able to sell popular new designs without fear of becoming a defendant in a copyright infringement suit.


Continue Reading Proposed Fashion Design Copyright Legislation In Congress