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Fashion Law Pop-Up Clinic

Fordham Law student - now alum! - Adrienne Montes welcoming Fashion Law Pop-Up clinic attendees

Next Clinic: end of January 2023

(Appointment required)


Request assistance


We’re here to help! A key part of the Fashion Law Institute’s mission is providing legal assistance to designers and fashion industry professionals, not only in the form of educational programming but also by offering free legal consultations. Long before the launch of the Institute, we realized that there was no fashion-specific pro bono legal program available, and that many emerging and independent designers lacked access to basic legal advice tailored to the fashion industry. With the help of the CFDA, we set out to fill that information gap.

Our series of Fashion Law Pop-Up Clinics matches each individual designer with a volunteer attorney who has both fashion experience and expertise related to the question at hand, along with an advanced student studying fashion law for extra assistance. (We came up with the “pop-up” name as a nod to retail pop-up stores – and a way to distinguish this program from traditional law school clinical courses.)

If you are a designer with a question or an attorney who would like to volunteer, please click here or email us for more information. Designers and other fashion industry professionals, please understand that we do not ordinarily arrange legal counsel apart from the Fashion Law Pop-Up Clinics and that space in this popular program is limited.

Fashion Law Bootcamp

Fashion Law Bootcamp - New York and Silicon Valley

Welcome to Bootcamp!

MAY 30 - JUNE 3, 2023

The Fashion Law Institute's unique annual Summer Intensive Program, fondly known as Fashion Law Bootcamp, is your opportunity to experience the field of fashion law outside of the regular law school curriculum. It's an unparalleled opportunity to delve into the substance of style, with emphasis on current business and legal issues involving the global fashion industry.

Learn fashion law from industry leaders

The program is run by Professor Susan Scafidi, Founder and Academic Director of the Institute, who pioneered the field of fashion law. She is the first professor to create a course in the area – covering the same material as the Fashion Law Bootcamp online edition – and is internationally recognized for her expertise. Participants will also have the opportunity to meet fashion industry leaders and Fashion Law Institute faculty, who teach the Fashion Law curriculum at Fordham Law School and themselves have worked with major brands, such as Tiffany, Kering, LVMH, Wilhelmina, Ford Models, and Conde Nast.

Photo of attendees at Fashion Law Bootcamp next to boot with pink flowers

The world of fashion law

Fashion law knowledge gives you vital tools for building fashion's future – and because fashion is a truly global industry, Fashion Law Bootcamp takes a comparative international approach. The syllabus is updated every year, with each section taking a fashion-centered focus to help attendees work with the industry more effectively. Topics include

  • intellectual property protection of fashion designs,
  • counterfeiting, 
  • licensing agreements,
  • contracts and force majeure,
  • employment issues from designers to models,
  • antitrust,
  • bankruptcy,
  • fashion and technology, including data security & privacy,
  • fashion finance,
  • local manufacturing, 
  • real estate,
  • retail issues, 
  • consumer protection (including cosmetics and personal care products),
  • ethics, sustainability and green fashion, 
  • import/export regulations and tariffs,
  • endangered species law,  
  • sumptuary laws,
  • masks and personal protective equipment, and
  • dress codes.

For lawyers and others interested in the law and business of fashion

Fashion Law Bootcamp®  is open to lawyers (and offers CLE credit), fashion professionals, law students, design students and alumni, and others in the U.S. and abroad who are interested in broadening their knowledge of the law and business of fashion. The program is an excellent way for fashion industry professionals to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the legal issues that they deal with on a regular basis or for practicing lawyers to expand their current practice or even jumpstart a change in career.

Individuals who have not yet had academic or practical exposure to the law and business of fashion, including design students entering their final year of study, are eligible to apply but must have a demonstrated scholastic aptitude and willingness to take on the challenge of studying legal materials.



The brief application form is below and is also linked here. Completed applications are reviewed as they are received.


Law students: Fashion Law Bootcamp does not issue a Fordham transcript; academic credit will need approval from your home institution. For additional information, please read this and email
before applying).

Lawyers: Both newly admitted and experienced attorneys will receive a maximum of 28.0 transitional and non-transitional, professional practice New York State CLE credits, for the online edition. We are looking into CLE certification for other jurisdictions.

California CLE credit certification renewal for the San Francisco/Silicon Valley edition is pending; based on previous years, the amount of CLE credits for this version should be 14.0 transitional and non-transitional, professional practice New York State CLE credits, and 12.0 CLE credit hours for California.

Certificates of completion will be awarded to all participants at the conclusion of the program.

If you are not a U.S. citizen or legal resident and are in or will enter the U.S. as a non-immigrant, you may need a visa to attend in-person editions of Fashion Law Bootcamp. A student visa is NOT required; attendees typically use a B-2 or B-1 visa depending on their particular interests, or, for qualified countries, the visa waiver program. Please email us for more information.

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION about Fashion Law Bootcamp, please email


New York: May 30 - June 3, 2023

Silicon Valley: TBA (email for updates)


The New York in-person edition covers the entire content of Professor Scafidi's pioneering two-credit-hour Fashion Law course.

The Silicon Valley edition covers special topics in fashion law with a technology focus, with sessions at the headquarters of leading brands. Details to be announced for the 2023 edition - the 2022 edition had to postponed due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Silicon Valley offices!


New York: $2,450, which includes all expenses associated with the program, including materials and optional sessions.

Silicon Valley: $975, which includes all expenses associated with the program (except for room and board), including printed materials and special events. A special reduced combined rate will be available for attendees of both the online and Silicon Valley editions!


A $250 deposit is due with the application for either edition or both Bootcamps. The deposit is applied toward the program cost and is non-refundable once accepted into the program. We look forward to receiving your application!


For the Silicon Valley edition, there are a number of places to stay in San Francisco, and surrounding areas. Details are provided in the admittance letter.

Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
A $250 deposit is due with the application. The deposit is applied toward the program cost and is non-refundable (unless not accepted into the program, in which case the deposit is refunded). If you prefer check, money order, or wire transfer, please let us know and we'll provide the requisite information!
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The Emperor’s New Clothes

Shirtless grey-bearded old man wearing crown and blue shirt and holding Fashion Law Institute gavel logo sees himself fully clothed in mirror

Welcome to the future of fashion – or at least a profitable parallel universe!  Even as the fashion industry has endured a pandemic era characterized by working from home in sweats, we’ve seen dramatic growth in digitized and digital-first fashion for our avatars in online dressing rooms and virtual worlds, fashion-related NFTs (authorized or otherwise), and wearable technology that opens doors to the metaverse in the form of AR and VR.  Fashion consumers aren’t likely to go without tangible threads entirely, unlike the emperor in the classic tale, but the possibilities for virtual fashion are endless – as are the related intellectual property and other legal issues.

In keeping with this duality of digital and physical worlds, please join our panel of experts as we convene both online via livestream and in person before a small studio audience, in a space provided courtesy of Diane von Furstenberg in NYC.  We are excited to take a step toward the return of in-person events, but please understand that symposium seating is extremely limited and available by confirmed advance reservation only.  Attendees must show proof of vaccination to enter and wear masks when not eating, drinking, or speaking on the panel. The livestream of "The Emperor's New Clothes: Digital Fashion, NFTs, Cryptocurrency, and the New Intangibles" is, of course, open to all!

DATE: Friday, November 12, 2021
TIME: 9:30-10:45am EST (New York time)
PLACE: Zoom or IRL (details provided with confirmed registration)
CLE: Attorneys are eligible to receive 1.5 New York State CLE credits, professional practice, transitional and non-transitional


  • Gabby Hirata, President and Chief Executive at DVF
  • John Maltbie, Director of Civil Enforcement, Intellectual Property at Louis Vuitton North America
  • Kristen Trad, Director, Legal & Business Affairs, A+E Networks
  • Nikki Edmunds-Ekwueme, Counsel, CLO Virtual Fashion
  • Robyn Williams, Co-Chair, Trademark Practice Group, Devlin Law Firm
  • Emily Levy, Senior Manager, Global Partnerships, Epic Games
  • Erica Carter, Counsel, Legal and Business Affairs, Epic Games
  • MODERATOR: Professor Susan Scafidi, Founder & Director, Fashion Law Institute at Fordham
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Vanity Fair covers Dolce & Gabbana v. Diet Prada

Vanity Fair article, The Trials of Diet Prada

An in-depth look at this landmark defamation lawsuit and the Fashion Law Institute’s pro bono defense:

With litigation pending for more than two years in Italy’s COVID-delayed legal system, Liu and Schuyler have lived “under this Dolce & Gabbana-designed sword of Damocles,” according to Fordham University law professor and Fashion Law Institute director Susan Scafidi, who represents the pair pro bono. It’s the kind of David and Goliath legal battle that usually stirs sympathy: The wealthy owners of a famously decadent billion-dollar company are suing two self-employed bloggers for more money than a court ordered Samsung to pay Apple, in 2018, for copying the iPhone….

I know not everybody likes them,” said lawyer Marco Amorese, the Bergamo-based lawyer who leads the Italian half of Diet Prada’s legal team. But when Scafidi told him about the case, he realized that the issues tapped into a subject of heated debate in Italy and across Europe: strategic lawsuits against public participation, known as SLAPPs. Or as Scafidi said of the lawsuit: “The goal, above all, is to silence them.”

Media Mentions 2021

2021 (selected) 

What ‘MetaBirkins’ Say About Virtual Fashion

Business of Fashion, December 15, 2021


The Year Ahead: Shoring Up Fashion’s Cyber Defenses

Business of Fashion, December 6, 2021


Celebrating the Impact of Yeohlee Teng

CFDA, November 9, 2021


Virginia town councilman apologizes after wearing blackface for 'Coming to America' costume

USA Today, November 1, 2021


Things to think through before you go out in your Halloween costume

WBEZCHICAGO, October 29, 2021


Is my Halloween costume offensive? What to know about cultural appropriation

USA Today, October 25, 2021


Native American Chief, Anne Frank, And 15 Other Costumes You Should Absolutely Steer Clear Of On Halloween

Buzz Feed, October 19, 2021


Why destroying products is still an “Everest of a problem” for fashion

Vogue Business, October 18, 2021


SCOTUS Grants Government’s Request to Participate in Case Interpreting PRO IP Act Language on Copyright Invalidation

IP Watch Dog, October 13, 2021


Looking poor on purpose is a trend, but why?

USA Today, September 29, 2021


We Hosted Another Fordham Fashion Law Institute Pop-Up Clinic!

Cowan, Liebowitz, & Latman, September 27, 2021


The Trials of Diet Prada
Vanity Fair, September 16, 2021


Fashion designer Balenciaga accused of cultural appropriation over $1,190 sweatpants
USA Today, September 13, 2021


New York Fashion Week is back in person — masked and vaxxed
NY Post, September 6, 2021


With His New LVMH Deal, Virgil Abloh Protected His Biggest Asset. Here’s How
Complex, August 5, 2021


GC Builds Career Around Love Of Fashion And Celebrities
Law360, August 2, 2021


Fashion Designers Survival Guide, July 30, 2021


The New Wave of Labour Litigation Facing Fashion
Business of Fashion, July 22, 2021


Crocs shares surge as clog maker posts another record-breaking quarter
NY Post, July 22, 2021


Fighting Over Footwear: 5 Shoe IP Battles Before Crocs
Law 360, July 20, 2021


Reap What You Sew: Costume Designers Try for Share of Licensing Pie From On-Screen Work
Variety, June 23, 2021


Time to Talk about it: Cultural Appropriation or Appreciation?
Girls in Limbo, June 21, 2021


Experts Discuss Pandemic-Spurred Business Opportunities
US Chamber, June 16, 2021


Why we need an ethic of appropriation
Br Kultur Bühne, June 6, 2021


Hiphop- A positive example of appropriation
Br Kultur Bühne, June 4, 2021


Experts baffled by Walmart’s trademark dispute with Kanye West
NY Post, May 10, 2021


Radar, May 7, 2021


Fashion law: a strategic ally of intellectual property
Asuntos Legales, May 7, 2021


Cultural appropriation and what makes it wrong
Daily Post Athenian, May 5, 2021


The Off-White Papers
The New York Times, April 21, 2021


‘Satan Shoes,’ Nike Lawsuits and the Booming Sneaker Bootleg Market
Wall Street Journal, April 12, 2021


Pangaia Won Over Consumers. Can It Do the Same for Businesses?
TechiAzi, March 31, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana vs. Diet Prada 2021
Enrique Orte Gaburos, March 31, 2021


Ad Age, March 31, 2021


The CBLDF Weighs In On Mike Deodato, DC Comics and NFT Artwork
Bleeding Cool, March 29, 2021


The CBLDF Creates Its Own Ethics Committee
Bleeding Cool, March 24, 2021


SuChin Pak Opens Up About ‘Misogynistic, Violent, Racist’ Incident At MTV
Scary Mommy, March 20, 2021


Resonate, March 10, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana seeks over $600M damages from 2 US bloggers
Israel Hayom, March 10, 2021


In an Unusual Move, Dolce & Gabbana Are Suing a Fashion Watchdog for Covering a Designer's Racist Comments
Entrepreneur, March 8, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana seeks over USD600M damages from two US bloggers
Borneo Bulletin, March 8, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana Are Suing Instagram's Fashion Bible, Diet Prada, For Defamation
Elle, March 7, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana seeks over $600M in damages from two fashion bloggers
NY Post, March 7, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana seeks more than $600M in damages from two US bloggers
USA Today, March 7, 2021


Diet Prada Pushes Back Against Dolce & Gabbana's Defamation Lawsuit
Paper, March 6, 2021


Dolce&Gabbana seeks over $600 million damages from 2 US bloggers
The Telegraph, March 6, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana seeks over $600M damages from 2 US bloggers
Associated Press, March 6, 2021


Instagram fashion watchdog Diet Prada pushes back on Dolce & Gabbana defamation lawsuit
Business Insider, March 5, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana sued Diet Prada. An Italian fashion house has accused the creators of a popular Instagram account of defamation
Elle Poland, March 5, 2021


Diet Prada fighting back against Dolce & Gabbana suit
Page Six, March 5, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana Sued Diet Prada for Defamation
The Cut, March 5, 2021


Diet Prada Sued by Dolce & Gabbana, and Other News
Surface, March 5, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana Has Sued Diet Prada for Defamation
Business of Fashion, March 5, 2021


Fashionista, March 4, 2021


Why is Dolce & Gabbana suing fashion watchdog Diet Prada? Defamation suit demands almost $5M in damages
Meaww, March 4, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana Can’t Get A Break, Nor Do They Deserve One
Jingdaily, March 4, 2021


Instagram fashion watchdog Diet Prada pushes back on Dolce & Gabbana defamation lawsuit
Insider, March 4, 2021


Diet Prada Cofounders Push Back Against Dolce & Gabbana Suit
WWD, March 4, 2021


Dolce & Gabbana is suing Diet Prada for defamation
Fashion United, March 4, 2021


Hypebae, March 4, 2021


Sustainable Fashion for All: Examining the Industry Through the Lens of Social Justice
United Nations, March 2, 2021


‘I celebrate Rihanna wearing Hindu necklace as sharing cultures brings people together’
News Chant, February 20, 2021


Who Is Lin-Manuel Miranda's Attorney Wife, Vanessa Nadal?
The List, February 27, 2021


What to Do When Retailers Don't Pay
Business of Fashion, February 16, 2021


Fashion and Retail in 2021 and Beyond: Post-COVID Reality and Where to Go From Here
MIT Enterprise Forum of NYC, February 16, 2021


Ethically manufactured clothes
Course Hero, February 12, 2021


Workplace Attire: Can your employer force you to wear a bra?
Borrelli & Associates, PLLC, February 12, 2021


Struggling in Workshop with the Question of Cultural Appropriation
Lit Hub, February 12, 2021


Rihanna puts her Fenty fashion "house" on hold
Marketplace, February 11, 2021


Mark Fischer EVP and General Counsel
PVH, January 29, 2021


Top 10 Names of Fashion Lawyers in the Industry
Indian Fashion Law, January 27, 2021


What Rejoining the Paris Agreement Signals to Fashion
WWD, January 21, 2021

Dolce & Gabbana v. Diet Prada

Instagram post by Diet Prada announcing that it filed defense of freedom of speech in answer to Dolce & Gabbana defamation lawsuit



Fashion Law Institute at Fordham Provides Pro Bono Legal Assistance

NEW YORK / MILAN (March 4, 2021)—On Monday Instagrammers Tony Liu and Lindsey Schuyler, the duo behind the company that runs Diet Prada, filed a defense of their freedom of speech in answer to defamation claims brought in a Milan court by Italian luxury brand Dolce & Gabbana. The lawsuit argues that Liu and Schuyler should be held responsible for lost revenue and other harm to the brand and its co-founder Stefano Gabbana after Diet Prada criticized a 2018 Dolce & Gabbana advertising campaign on Weibo for its stereotypical and sexist depiction of a Chinese woman and revealed anti-Asian remarks apparently originating from Gabbana’s Instagram account. The messages, which at the time were rebutted as hackers’ actions, called China the ”country of [five poop emoji]” and its people “ignorant dirty smelling mafia.”

Following the widespread negative response to its advertising campaign and the withdrawal of many Chinese models and guests from a planned fashion show in Shanghai, Dolce & Gabbana canceled the event and issued a public video apology featuring its founders. Shortly thereafter, in early 2019, the brand filed an action for defamation demanding that Liu and Schuyler pay damages in the amount of €3 million for Dolce & Gabbana and €1 million for Stefano Gabbana. 

The nonprofit Fashion Law Institute, based at Fordham Law School, is coordinating Liu and Schuyler’s defense through its pro bono clinic in collaboration with Italian law firm AMSL Avvocati.   

Statement from Diet Prada co-founder Tony Liu (NEW YORK):

As an Asian-American, I’m part of a community that is often misrepresented. Like many people of color in the United States, there’s pain that stems from seeing ourselves depicted through inaccurate, harmful stereotypes. Often, it leads to racism and violence.

Growing up as a queer person of color in a predominantly white town, I’ve often found myself intimidated and at a loss for words when confronted with racism and bigotry. Having cultivated 

Diet Prada as a platform where stereotypes are laid bare and stories from the larger BIPOC community are brought to the fore, is one of the things I’m most proud of.

For two years, I’ve stayed silent and carried the burden of this lawsuit on my shoulders. During this time, the world was forced to reckon with the systemic racism in the U.S. that led to the murder of George Floyd and countless other Black lives, as well as the xenophobia that further fueled Trump’s anti-Asian rhetoric in the age of COVID-19. In the outpouring of support for these communities being targeted, we all continue to see the power of solidarity and speaking truth to power. Diet Prada will continue to be a platform to elevate these crucial issues.

Statement from Diet Prada co-founder Lindsey Schuyler (NEW YORK):

Diet Prada has made a point to be actively anti-racist for years. As an ally to my Asian friends, and the community at large, I was offended not only at the caricatures of China and Chinese people, but also by the misogynistic images associated with them.

As a woman, I believe it is important that media outlets speak out against misogyny as well as racism and are not silenced by legal threats. Discrediting and denouncing the press, charges of “fake news,” and a general threatening attitude towards journalists are a breeding ground for danger and a slippery slope toward extremism.

Now is the time for public figures and brands to respond to public opinion and media critiques with progressive action, not lawsuits.

Statement from Professor Susan Scafidi, Founder & Director of the Fashion Law Institute at Fordham (NEW YORK):

Since our founding in 2010, a key part of the Fashion Law Institute’s mission has been to provide pro bono legal assistance to industry professionals – in this case, individuals working to hold the fashion industry to high ethical standards, to defend the right to freedom of speech, and to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion by criticizing anti-Asian caricatures.

Italian and U.S. anti-defamation law differ in their specifics, and it is apparent that the plaintiffs engaged in a degree of forum shopping. However, we are confident that Diet Prada is on the right side of both law and history, and we are honored to help them demonstrate that harmful stereotypes are never in style.  

Statement from Marco Amorese, AMSL Avvocati (MILAN and BERGAMO, ITALY)

Freedom of speech and criticism are fundamental values of an open society and constitute an important stimulus in the dissemination of a way of doing business that respects the diversity of gender, ethnicity and sexual orientation. The critique of cultural paradigms that are deemed inadequate should promote change and not give rise to judicial actions aimed at silencing it. We are convinced that Italian Courts will know how to protect those civil liberties.

Contact information 

Fashion Law Institute 

at Fordham


An unofficial English-language translation of the response filed Monday on behalf of Tony Liu and Lindsey Schuyler, along with the original version in Italian, is available in Dropbox

Response – english translation

Inside Out 6

Purple flag graphic Inside Out 6 February 26, 2021, 8:45-10am

Bipartisan purple had a fashion moment on Inauguration Day in the United States, as Vice President Kamala Harris, former First Lady Michelle Obama, and  former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton all opted for powerful head-to-toe statements of unity in violet, purple, and plum.  It's also a color that has variously represented royalty, the NACWC and the Black women's movement, women's suffrage, and Victorian half-mourning -- the latter relevant today as a sign of hope as we move past the depths of the pandemic and see new light at the end of the tunnel.  Our 6th annual February fashion month event, "Inside Out 6 - Purple Reign: Fashion's in-house counsel on a new U.S. administration and a new world order," invokes this symbolism as we ask counsel from a range of fashion companies to share their legal insight and foresight on topics including sustainability, digital innovation, data privacy, bankruptcy, and diversity, equity, & inclusion.  We look forward to seeing you on Friday, February 26, from 8:45-10:00am New York time -- in shades from lavender to ultraviolet, of course!

DATE: Friday, February 26, 2021
TIME: 8:45-10:00am
PLACE: Online via Zoom
NYS CLE: 1.5 hours professional practice, transitional and non-transitional


  • Nick Barnhorst, Vice President, Head of Legal & Regulatory, Fresh, Inc. 
  • Louise Firestone, SVP, Legal Affairs and General Counsel, LVMH Moët Hennesy Louis Vuitton Inc. 
  • Marie Funel, Corporate Counsel, Birchbox, Inc. 
  • Jeffrey Hellman, Senior Vice President and Assistant General Counsel, PVH Corp. 
  • Ashley Valdes, Senior Counsel, Warby Parker 
  • Moderated by Professor Susan Scafidi, Founder & Director, Fashion Law Institute at Fordham
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Have a smashing 2021!

We look forward to seeing you in the New Year!

Sign up in January for these upcoming events:
Inside Out 6: Fashion’s In-House Counsel
11th Annual Symposium
Dates to be announced soon!

Applications for our next online Fashion Law Bootcamp are also open!

And, if you’re feeling the spirit of the season, the glee of a holiday bonus, or simply the satisfaction of planning a tax deduction before the end of the year, please help us continue the work of the Fashion Law Institute with your donation. We’re a self-supporting 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and contributions at all levels are deeply appreciated!