Saturday, April 25, 2015

"Who Made Your Clothes?" and Fashion Revolution Day

Did you join the movement and post your selfie asking 
"Who Made Your Clothes?" for Fashion Revolution Day?

As participants in international trade, we have a responsibility to ask ourselves who is making the clothes we facilitate the importation of, whether as buyers, distributors, importers and those "behind-the-scenes" folks like myself.

So - Who Made Your Clothes?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Many Thanks and Happy Earth Day!

A big THANK YOU to our stellar law clerk Sophie from Pace Law School for her wonderful contribution to our office this Spring 2015 semester.  Congratulations on completing your L.L.M. and Happy Earth Day!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Ready to Extend Your Fashion Buying Power?

Want to increase your fashion spending power and confidence in buying? 

Check out the Fashion Planning Hub's upcoming webinar taking place this Friday, April 24th from 1 to 2 pm EST.

Take $10 off with promo code BLAPR at:

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Introducing Our New Law Firm Website!

We're excited to announce that we've updated our website at to make it easier to understand the legal solutions we offer for those involved in imports, exports and of course, the fashion industry.

We've also got a great new webinar series via The Fashion Planning Hub for entrepreneurs looking to learn about new subjects or for the executive looking to brush up on one.

We invite you attend our next webinar on a complimentary basis by playing our quiz, so check out and we'll see you there!  

Monday, April 13, 2015

Tips for the New Exporter Expanding in to the U.S. Market

This article was written for UK Trade and Investment to provide some tips to new UK exporters selling through the platform "Newegg" for delivery to your average American household.

Think being small means you don’t matter?  Think again!

All shipments arriving from outside of the United States pass through US Customs and the last thing you want to be is a company who is on their list of foreign suppliers to pay attention to.

You further don't want to be the supplier that creates a problem for your U.S. buyer as it could destroy your relationship with the buyer as well as harm your reputation and detract others from buying from you.
You therefore want to have your "ducks in order" with regards to legal compliance of the products you're selling into the US market, even if you're doing so in small quantities.
 Here are 5 tips to help you do that:

1) Recognize that the law applies to those who are selling and even offering to sell in the U.S.

·       That means that even if you have not sold anything, just by virtue of offering the merchandise for sale, it requires compliance with US laws.

·       Keep in mind that each shipment adds to your supplier profile with US Customs.  Though you may start out with “Newegg,” as your business expands your shipments to the U.S. will grow too and your sales here form a part of your export history recorded with U.S. Customs.

2) Understand that many of the products you want to sell may require testing and certification as to compliance with the U.S. law(s) over that category.  For example:
  • ·      The US Consumer Product Safety Commission has oversight of many of these laws and you can go to to learn more about how their rules might apply to your products, including toys and other children’s products
  • ·      The US Food and Drug Administration has oversight of many food, health and beauty products, including cosmetics
  • ·      The US Federal Trade Commission has oversight of clothing and home fashions, as well as marketing claims which may be placed on packaging or temporary labels 

3) Remember that compliance with these laws is required prior to its importation into the U.S.
  • ·      While you may think of yourself as “just a seller,” if you’re selling to an individual, remember that they are relying on you to sell them a safe product that complies with U.S. law
  • ·      If you’re selling to a reseller, or are trying to sell to one, then they may request from you proof of your compliance with U.S. laws, so you’ll need to have your conformity certificates in order to provide them to those vendors relying on you. 

4) Product compliance aside, there are import protocols which must be complied with such as the proper marking and valuation of the product, as well as invoicing so that US customs can asses the appropriate amount of duties on that particular product.

5) Remember, even though a shipment which has a value not exceeding $200 can enter the U.S. free of duties and other taxes, the marking, valuation, invoicing and product compliance rules all still apply and again, all of these must be correctly done when you (the exporter) ship your product out for export.
  • ·       A watch for example, not only has multiple requirements in terms of marking different parts of it with its country of origin information, declaring a watch’s value is overly complicated and so both the physical stamping of the watch parts as well as the invoice need to be prepared in such a way that it meets US Customs regulatory compliance standards.

Questions/comments?  Post below or email Deanna at

Learn more at or
Tweet us @fashcompliance on or

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

AVVO Talk: Importing China Products for Business Start-up

Question Continued:  Hello! I'm planning to open an online small business to import apparel products from China to re-sell in USA. 
1. I don't know if I must establish a company to be eligible to import goods to re-sell? 
2. What are the essentials documents and process that I must know? 
3. In which situation a small business must build a legal company? 
4. Is there any solution for me to import goods easily since I just start up and only import a small order to test the market first? 
Thank you
Avvo - Rate your Lawyer. Get Free Legal Advice.
Deanna's Response:

Hello, take a look at, click on its "Trade" tab for more info. and browse through some of its Informed Compliance publications. Importers take on a lot of liability as US Customs views importing as a "privilege" and not a "right." As a result of this, if you plan to grow your business you need to be aware of your responsibilities in order to avoid problems. 

Apparel products also have their own labeling specific laws and testing requirements that must be abided by and that responsibility falls on the shoulders of you the importer, not to mention certain website disclaimers. 

As our practice concentrates on the fashion industry and imports/exports, you may find some guidance about what new entrants to the market like yourself can use by accessing our resources as provided in our Avvo profile.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

AVVO Talk: I Ordered Bad Quality Shoes From Ebay - Need to Check Import / Customs Approval to Import These Products From China

Question Continued: I bought shoes from ebay from a US Seller, which is an American brand but the shoes are made in china.  The shoe’s quality is so bad, it smells like gasoline, and I don't think the products qualify to be sold in the USA.  Is there any way to check if the seller/company are legally importing these to the USA?  Do they need some type of approval from the US customs?  The shoes are for adults, size 10, and the seller says it’s made of synthetic faux-leathers but no label on the shoes confirm that.  The label says it's made in CHINA.  Thank you.

Deanna's Response:


Unfortunately, many of the laws related to importing extend to the party known as the "ultimate purchaser" of the goods, which would, in a case like yours, likely be the US seller from whom you purchased the shoes via E-bay (unless such seller is a retail store as opposed to an individual seller - in which case, a consumer like you would more likely be the ultimate purchaser). 

The import laws related to footwear would have required a conspicuous label disclosing certain information which it sounds like you cannot find. This being the case, you have the option to get the shoe tested in a lab in order to know what the product is chemically made of (since it is a synthetic shoe), and then where questionable results appear, you could go to your local consumer product safety agency for more assistance.