Q&A from Greenberg Traurıı Shareholder Danıelle Garno.
Could you please introduce yourself and talk about your fashion law carrier path?
At Greenberg Traurig, I represent fashion clients and companies of all sizes – from start-ups to multi-national, global brands – helping them navigate legal issues and counseling them on growing and sustaining a successful brand. I focus my practice on issues faced by the fashion community, including startup phase and commercial advice, intellectual property – such as trademark and copyright infringement, social media marketing, advertising, and anti-counterfeiting, as well as employment and general business litigation. I started my fashion law career path as a young associate representing global brands in anti-counterfeiting matters and going on raids with law enforcement. It was such a rewarding experience for me to be able to mix the practice of law with my love of fashion.
As we know, Miami is investing more and more in fashion. Miami Design District is really important now, also one of the best fashion schools in the world, Instituto Marangoni is about to open their first US school in Miami. In this context, what is the importance of fashion law in Miami?
With important design schools like Instituto Marangoni and Miami International University of Art & Design (MIU), it is now even more important for us to retain talent here in South Florida. With the influx of creative talent and designers, there will be a growing demand for lawyers and professionals who understand the business of fashion and can provide guidance to help clients navigate the fashion industry in order to avoid potential problems.
When practicing fashion law in Miami, do they need your legal expert opinion in fashion law cases in Europe or in other countries?
As a fashion lawyer, it is always important for me to stay abreast of important issues and fashion-related cases that can have a national or global impact on the fashion industry. Because Greenberg Traurig is a global firm, we have resources worldwide that can assist clients regardless of where their company is based. We work very closely with our team and pull in all resources to help ensure the best outcome for our clients.
As a fashion lawyer, what is the most interesting case that you have ever had?
One of the most interesting cases I worked on was a counterfeiting case where we executed a civil seizure order that affected several locations on both the west and east coast. We had to schedule and synchronize with local law enforcement to go into each location simultaneously. Everyone had to be synchronized to ensure that funds were not transferred before our arrival. It turned out to be one of the largest judgements in a counterfeiting case at the time and we were able to secure a good outcome for our client.
What do you think about fashion law and its development in the world?
It is necessary for fashion lawyers to understand the industry and how the business side operates in order to best assist clients. This has become more of a niche industry practice and we have to secure and protect our clients. Creative minds work much differently than business people and they need fashion lawyers to help protect their talent, designs and hard work.
What is your advice to fashion lawyers and students?
My advice to fashion lawyers and students is to become a really good technical lawyer, whether your focus is litigation, intellectual property or another specialty. If you want to become a fashion lawyer, you really need to understand the business of fashion. It is also important to surround yourself with other professionals who know about key issues that affect the industry, such as immigration, trade and customs, and labor and employment.