So for all of you who read the depositions from the Institute for Justice’s lawsuit in Florida (I am sure you all read them…right?;-) you probably noted that the wily strategic litigators at the IJ are trying to turn the issue of “grandfathering” around to haunt us. Grandfather clauses are common additions to proposed bills that provide an exemption based on circumstances that existed prior to the adoption of some policy. In the case of Interior Design legislation, be it title or practice regulation, interior designers who are unable to comply with proposed education and examination requirements are allowed a grace period to take the exam or otherwise prove competency through years of experience. Basically this is a way to appease those whose livelihoods might be jeopardized when bills are passed in order to curry their support of the bill. While many designers partake in being “grandfathered” many do not. They feel that it is an unjust, unfair or they just plain old choose not to participate.
Many interior decorators who previously could legitimately lay claim to the term interior design but do not have the training or proven experience to “grandfather” find themselves ostracized from the profession they wholeheartedly believe that they have an innate right to. So despite the efforts of the pro-regulation side and ASID as well as IIDA to make sure the regulatory effort is fair, there is always some collateral political damage. This is merely one aspect of legalizing the profession that has pros and cons. And up until recently not much attntion has been given to the negative aspects.
I sense that the IJ is going to use this “grandfathering” process against us to highlight the disparity between those that qualify via the accepted education, experience and exam route and those who merely are granted access to the profession because they have been around long enough.
So you need to see if your grandmother is grandfathered. She may be the focus of the next round of IJ anti-regulatory rhetoric.