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Fashion Law Institute Bootcamp

Laurie Berke-Weiss spoke at The Fashion Law Institute's unique annual Summer Intensive Program, known as the Fashion Law Bootcamp, on June 5, 2017. FLI is the world’s first center dedicated to law and the business of fashion. The program strives to introduce participants – including attorneys (domestic and international), fashion professionals, and students with a particular interest in this area – to “the substance of style,” with emphasis on current business and legal issues involving the global fashion industry.

Ms. Berke-Weiss’ presentation introduced the Bootcampers to American employment and labor law on the federal, state, and city level, and specifically employment law issues as they manifest in the fashion industry. Participants were particularly interested in the topics of Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements and their enforceability as they apply to creative positions.

Ms. Berke-Weiss discussed the tug-of-war between Carolina Herrera and Oscar de la Renta over designer Laura Kim’s non-compete agreement. Kim worked for Oscar de la Renta for more than a decade before leaving for Carolina Herrera, due to being passed for a promotion as creative director after Oscar de la Renta’s passing. Once at Herrera, Kim signed an agreement not to work for any direct competitors for six months after leaving the label. Several months after Kim joined Carolina Herrera, she submitted her resignation after her desired position at Oscar de la Renta became available. Carolina Herrera filed suit against Oscar de la Renta, demanding that Kim stop working for the company immediately. In an industry where people often move between competitors, the Bootcampers were eager to learn how this could impact their own careers.

Participants, particularly those from other countries also were interested in discussing the lack of paid parental leave in the US and how it could impact their careers.

The Fashion Law Institute is headquartered at Fordham University School of Law.

This blog post was written by Berke-Weiss Law PLLC Summer Associate, Iva Popa.