Charles Colman founded Charles Colman Law, PLLC, in January 2011 in order to provide cost-effective, industry-specific legal representation to individuals and companies in fashion, music, art, film, media, new technology, and other creative fields. Charles previously worked as a litigator at Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP, where he handled cases involving breach of contract, false advertising, copyright, trademark, and right of publicity, among many other areas of law.
Charles has been an active voice in the emerging field of "fashion law." From 2010 to 2013, he served as the Co-Chair of the Fashion Design Legislation Subcommittee at the American Bar Association. Charles is also the sponsor and an active member of the Fashion Law Committee at the New York City Bar Association.
Charles often speaks on panels where legal issues in fashion (as well as music, art, and technology) are discussed and debated. He has appeared before audiences at the New York City Bar Association, the New York County Lawyers' Association, the Copyright Society of the U.S.A., the International Association of Lawyers, and the Institute for Information Law and Policy at New York Law School, as well as at Brooklyn Law School, Cardozo Law School, Columbia Law School, Howard Law School, NYU Law School, and Penn Law School.
In 2011 and 2012, Charles was invited to deliver a series of guest lectures to BFA students at Parsons, The New School for Design. In Spring 2013, he co-taught an undergraduate course, "International Business Strategies and Fashion Law," at New York's Fashion Institute of Technology, alongside FIT's Director of Entrepreneurship (and former CEO of Van Cleef & Arpels) Henry Welt. As of June 1, 2013, Charles holds the full-time position of Acting Assistant Professor at NYU Law School. (Charles Colman Law, PLLC, remains open for business, with the assistance of the attorneys listed below.)
Charles regularly posts on the blog LAW OF FASHION, addressing legal issues of interest to individuals and companies in fashion, media, and art. (The blog's affiliated LinkedIn group, also called LAW OF FASHION, counts among its 2000 members many leading law firm partners and in-house counsel at top fashion corporations.) Charles has also written for Law360 and other web publications, and has contributed articles on intellectual property law to print periodicals like Intellectual Property Magazine, the American Bar Association's LANDSLIDE Magazine, and Vestoj: The Journal of Sartorial Matters.
Charles is the author of a chapter on intellectual property law in West's Navigating Fashion Law: Leading Lawyers on Exploring the Trends, Cases, and Strategies of Fashion Law, and has contributed a section on copyright law to the highly anticipated second edition of Fashion Law: A Guide for Designers, Fashion Executives, and Attorneys. His writing on IP law has also appeared in Professor Alan Nemeth's undergraduate textbook v. (versus): Case Law, Concepts, & American Society (Cognella 2012). Charles is currently putting the finishing touches on a single-volume treatise, tentatively titled Fashion and Copyright and slated for publication by LexisNexis-Matthew Bender in late 2013.
Charles has been profiled by Forbes and by top-ranked legal industry blog Above The Law, and has been quoted in publications ranging from fashion industry trade magazines to periodicals for intellectual property law practitioners to mainstream media outlets. His firm's matters have been covered by the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, New York Magazine, The Atlantic, and Time, among many other media outlets.
Charles graduated from Yale College with a B.A. in Linguistics (cum laude, distinction in major), and received his J.D. from Columbia Law School (James Kent Scholar; Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar). Charles is admitted to practice law in the State of New York, before the U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Brian Lehman is the Firm's Executive Director, overseeing its day-to-day management.
After graduating from the University of Michigan in 1996, Brian attended the University of Chicago Law School, where he was a co-founder and articles editor of the Chicago Journal of International Law. Brian received his J.D. (with honors) in 2000, and went on to clerk for the Honorable Alex Kozinski, of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. From 2001-2002, Brian clerked for the Honorable Shira A. Scheindlin, of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
After clerking, Brian went on to work for nationally recognized law firms, and periodically served as an independent consultant on JAMS mediation and arbitration matters. As a result of this experience, Brian has a deep understanding of both the logistical and strategic aspects of litigation and alternative dispute resolution. He has shared this insight through his writing, which has appeared in publications like Law360, the New York Law Journal, West's Securities Litigation Report, and CNN.com.
Brian first collaborated with Charles Colman Law, PLLC, in 2011. He took on a formal role at the Firm earlier this year, assuming the title and responsibilities of Executive Director in May 2013.
Brian is admitted to practice law in the State of Connecticut, with admission pending in New York State.
Paul Eli Mehrer is Of Counsel to the Firm.
Paul has substantial experience providing legal counsel to individuals and businesses in new media, photography, graphic design, fashion, and the entertainment industries. Having trained in the legal departments of The Authors Guild, The William Morris Agency, and (most recently) Condé Nast Publications, Paul is well versed in drafting and negotiating licenses and other contracts; advising on business formation mechanics and strategies; consulting on risk management, especially in the realms of advertising and marketing; and registering and prosecuting trademarks before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Paul received a B.A. in History from Tulane University (cum laude), and earned his Juris Doctorate at New York's Cardozo Law School (Dean's Scholarship, 2002-2005.) He has been licensed to practice law in New York State since 2006, and is an active member of the Bar Association of The City of New York and the New York State Bar Association.
Aldo Panunzio is Of Counsel to the Firm.
Aldo has several years of experience in large and small law firm environments, where he has focused on issues in real estate law and, more recently, employment law. Having first studied law in his home country of Italy, Aldo has particular familiarity with cross-border real estate transactions. He has additional experience counseling clients in the entertainment, public relations, publishing, and sports sectors.
After receiving his law degree from the University of Florence and passing all qualifying examinations, Aldo went on to complete an LL.M. at Penn State Law on a full merit scholarship. He has worked for DLA Piper in Milan, and for Paul Hastings in New York. Aldo is licensed to practice law in New York State.
Joseph ("Joe") Taub is Of Counsel to the Firm.
Joe has handled diverse adversarial matters in both state and federal court, including commercial disputes, IP litigation, and securities-related matters. Joe is admitted to practice law in New York and before the U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York.
Upon graduating from Fordham Law School, Mr. Taub took a position at Allen & Overy LLP, where he worked on matters in the areas of banking, corporate finance and M&A. He has since worked for and with several nationally renowned litigators on a number of major cases.
During law school, Mr. Taub interned at the U.S. Attorneys’ Office for the Eastern District of New York, where assisted attorneys in the Business Fraud and Violent Crimes & Terrorism Sections. Mr. Taub was also a member of the Fordham Tax and Consumer Rights Litigation Clinic, where his advocacy on behalf of low-income clients earned him Fordham's Archibald R. Murray Public Service Award.