i+D - January/February 2020 - 38

License to Practice - By Brian J. Barth

State of Affairs
Compared to architecture, landscape architecture, and
engineering, interior design is a young profession. The
other major design professions came of age in a different
political environment (in ancient times, in the case of
architecture and engineering) and long ago established
standards of practice that have become entrenched in law
and public consciousness. One finds statutes governing
these professions, and protecting their interests and
integrity, in all states and Canadian provinces. Importantly,
those rules tend to be fairly consistent from one
jurisdiction to another. But for interior design, this remains
a work in progress.
Currently 27 states (including the District of Columbia and
Puerto Rico) and eight Canadian provinces have enacted
some form of interior design legislation. In less than a
dozen of those do interior designers have "permitting
privileges," allowing them to stamp and seal blueprints
and other legally binding construction documents. Soukup
says the goal is to elevate the profession to the same legal
stature as other design modalities-in all 50 states and
provinces-despite the headwinds blowing in the opposite
direction. He lists other overlooked rights associated with
such privileges, including the right to own a majority share
in an architectural interiors firm and the right to place a lien
on the property of a client who does not pay.
"Interior design really didn't come into its own and
become the complex, building sciences-backed profession
that it is today until the last 40 years," says Soukup.
"Simultaneously, starting in the Reagan era, there was
a move towards deregulation that has culminated in
the environment we have today, where we have a lot
of relatively new professions-financial planners, music
therapists, etc.-that are looking for the same rights as
some of the more established professions but are having
trouble achieving state government recognition. This, in
turn, hinders their ability to compete in the free market."
While ASID pushes for regulatory uniformity across the
land, "we certainly understand the political and regulatory
environment that we're in today," says Soukup. "We
understand that each state will be different based on its
political and social norms-unfortunately, the scope of
practice of interior design in Alabama won't be the same
as the scope in California."

38

Lyn Van Tassel,
LVT Design

"Interior design really didn't come into
its own and become the complex, building
sciences-backed profession that it is today
until the last 40 years."
-BRYAN SOUKUP, ASID

i+D - January/February 2020



i+D - January/February 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of i+D - January/February 2020

Contents
i+D - January/February 2020 - Cover1
i+D - January/February 2020 - Cover2
i+D - January/February 2020 - 3
i+D - January/February 2020 - 4
i+D - January/February 2020 - 5
i+D - January/February 2020 - Contents
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i+D - January/February 2020 - Cover3
i+D - January/February 2020 - Cover4
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/id/20211112
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/id/20210910
https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/id/20210708
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https://www.nxtbook.com/emerald/id/20210304
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/asid/design_product_guide
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20200708_french
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20200708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20200506_french
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20200506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20200304_french
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20191112_french
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190910_french
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190708_french
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190506_french
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190304_french
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20190102_french
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20180708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20180708_french
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20180506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/id/20180506_french
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