October 28, 2021

Exploring Fashion Law, with Adv. Namrata Pahwa

Adv. Namrata Pahwa

Adv. Namrata Pahwa did her masters from National University of Singapore. Her area of interest includes Fashion Law, Intellectual Property Litigation, Advisory and Civil Dispute Resolution. She, in this interview, helps us to explore Fashion Law.

How would you like to introduce yourself to our readers? What motivated you to pursue the field of law?

A first-generation lawyer, born and raised in Calcutta, who started her independent practice in New Delhi with 1 client in hand and is pushing for growth every single day.

Honestly, when I was in school, I remember this imagery of a lawyer dressed in his robes, looking almost like superman – that is what caught my eye first. Coupled with the fact that I loved debates, articulating my thoughts in words and text alike and having very encouraging parents who motivate me even today.

You did masters from National University of Singapore. Please share with our readers your experience.

My reason to do an international Masters was two fold; one, since I did my bachelors from a Government law school in Calcutta, I wanted a more holistic and wholesome university experience which would provide me with a wider outlook and open new avenues and second, where practicality was given importance over theory. NUS gave me all of that and much more. Its where I could choose modules instead of having one dissertation and the fact that mine was a dual country Masters, was the cherry on top.

Your area of interest relates to Fashion Law. Please introduce us with this subject.

Even though I practice all civil litigation, my most preferred vertical would be that of Intellectual Property – prosecution, transactional and litigation which thereon leads to Fashion Law. A genre so unique and interesting, it encapsulates within its umbrella; IP, Labour laws, Company law, Contracts, Export -Import laws, Counterfeiting issues and so much more.

If someone is interested in Fashion Law. How to pursue it? Can you suggest us some firms/organisation where students can apply for internship?

First, understand exactly what fashion law entails. Truly figure if that’s what you want to pursue because I believe you must love what you do otherwise it’s not worth your time. There are various independent practitioners’ and/or firms who have fashion, IP and Art verticals. Do as much research as you can, not only about the organisation but also about the lawyer you’ll be working with because that would be a very important relationship that could build your future.

How are Fashion Law and IPR related? Do students need to opt for IPR as major in their college to hone their knowledge in Fashion Laws.

The most common and important way for artists to protect their creation is through IP. One should have ideally studied IP either in their bachelors or through a course on the side or some practical experience would be best. But, you must understand and know of the various other genres that fall into Fashion Law.

Please share some career opportunities in Fashion Law.

One can either work as an independent counsel or in house counsel for artists, fashion houses, designers and all creators actually. Academics is another exciting area which is unexplored.

In this time of COVID, what is your opinion with opportunities in Fashion Law.

The pandemic has taught us 1 most important quality – to adapt to the given surroundings. We have all seen the swift change towards all things online – meetings, hearings, fashion shows, photo shoots amongst others. Opportunities in Fashion Law have only increased over the years since artists and creators acknowledge the need for the same and this is only going to grow into a magnum opus.

What would be your advice to our budding lawyers?

Read, write and listen.

Read and keep yourself updated with the amendments, judgements and whatever else you find interesting. Write as many articles and/or blogs (long or short, published or unpublished) as you can. This will help you in articulating your own thoughts and of course, listen to as many live hearings, webinars, conversations that others are having. This will provide you with a wider outlook and make you question.


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