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A00107 Summary:

BILL NOA00107
 
SAME ASNo Same As
 
SPONSORRosenthal L
 
COSPNSROtis, Thiele, Seawright, Barrett, Stirpe, Fahy, Quart, Weprin
 
MLTSPNSR
 
Add 15.12, amd 11.01, 15.11 & 15.15, Arts & Cul L
 
Relates to the authenticity, attribution and authorship of fine works of art; defines the term authenticator and stipulates that in a civil action regarding authenticity, the claimant must specify with particularity the facts and prove the elements by clear and convincing evidence; entitles the authenticator to recover reasonable attorneys' fees and expenses if he/she prevails.
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A00107 Memo:

NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
 
BILL NUMBER: A107
 
SPONSOR: Rosenthal L
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the arts and cultural affairs law, in relation to opinions concerning authenticity, attribution and authorship of works of fine art   PURPOSE: This bill enhances protections under the law for individuals who are employed as art authenticator in the visual arts community.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section one amends section 11.01 of the arts and cultural affairs law by adding a new subdivision 23. Section two amends section 15.11 of the arts and cultural affairs law, as added by chapter 849 of the laws of 1984. Section three amends the arts and cultural affairs law by adding a new section 15.12. Section four amends subdivision 4 of section 15.15 of the arts and cultural affairs law, as added by chapter 849 of the laws of 1984. Section five amends subdivision five of section 15.15 of the arts and cultural affairs law, as added by chapter 849 of the laws of 1984 Section six sets forth the effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: In general, artwork is authenticated by a trained person through documentation, stylistic inquiry, and/or scientific verification. No one method is perfect as oftentimes authenticity is difficult to determine. While each authentication method has its own drawbacks, the role of authenticators as drivers of the art market cannot be overstated. Art authenticators reduce the risk of counterfeits and imitations flooding the art market that could potentially devalue the work of millions of artists. In recent years, the work of authenticators has come under pressure from meritless lawsuits against those who render opinions in good faith. Such defense of expensive and frivolous lawsuits has left many in the indus- try reluctant to lend their expertise in authenticating art works. This bill would clarify the role of art authenticators to ensure that those who practice their profession, in good faith, would be afforded protections under the law to ensure that only valid, verifiable claims against authenticators are allowed to proceed in civil court.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2017-17: A.5120 - Referred to Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Develop- ment; S.1974 - Advanced to Third Reading 2015-16: A.1018-A - Referred to Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Develop- ment; S.1229-A - Passed Senate 2013-14: A.9016 - Referred to Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Develop- ment; S.6794 - Committed to Rules   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None to the State.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This bill shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall have become a law and shall apply to all opinions as to the authenticity, attribution or authorship of a work of fine art provided to someone other than the authenticator after such effective date.
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A00107 Text:



 
                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
 
                                           107
 
                               2019-2020 Regular Sessions
 
                   IN ASSEMBLY
 
                                       (Prefiled)
 
                                     January 9, 2019
                                       ___________
 
        Introduced  by  M. of A. L. ROSENTHAL, OTIS, THIELE, SEAWRIGHT, BARRETT,
          STIRPE, FAHY, QUART, WEPRIN -- read once and referred to the Committee
          on Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development
 
        AN ACT to amend the arts and cultural affairs law, in relation to  opin-
          ions  concerning  authenticity, attribution and authorship of works of
          fine art
 
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
 
     1    Section  1.  Section  11.01  of  the  arts and cultural affairs law is
     2  amended by adding a new subdivision 23 to read as follows:
     3    23. "Authenticator" as used in section 15.11, 15.12 and 15.15 of  this
     4  chapter  shall  mean,  subject to the limitations in this subdivision, a
     5  person or entity recognized in  the  visual  arts  community  as  having
     6  expertise regarding the artist, work of fine art, or visual art multiple
     7  with  respect to whom such person or entity renders an opinion as to the
     8  authenticity, attribution or authorship of a work of fine art or  visual
     9  art  multiple,  or  a  person or entity recognized in the visual arts or
    10  scientific community as having expertise in uncovering facts that  serve
    11  as a direct basis, in whole or in part, for an opinion as to the authen-
    12  ticity,  attribution  or  authorship of a work of fine art or visual art
    13  multiple. "Authenticator" shall include, but not be limited to,  authors
    14  of  catalogues  raisonne or other scholarly texts in which an opinion as
    15  to the authenticity, attribution or authorship of a work of fine art  or
    16  visual  art  multiple is expressed or implied. "Authenticator" shall not
    17  include a person or entity that has a financial interest in the work  of
    18  fine art or visual art multiple for which such opinion is rendered or in
    19  any  transaction concerning such work of fine art or visual art multiple
    20  for which the opinion is rendered, other  than  to  be  compensated  for
    21  services  such  person  or entity engaged in to provide an opinion as to
    22  the authenticity, attribution or authorship of such work of fine art  or
 
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD01854-01-9

        A. 107                              2
 
     1  visual  art  multiple or to provide information on which such an opinion
     2  is based in whole or in part.
     3    §  2.  Section 15.11 of the arts and cultural affairs law, as added by
     4  chapter 849 of the laws of 1984, is amended to read as follows:
     5    § 15.11. Express warranties.  Information  provided  pursuant  to  the
     6  provisions  of this article shall create an express warranty pursuant to
     7  section 13.05 of this title.  When  such  information  is  not  supplied
     8  because  not  applicable, this shall constitute an express warranty that
     9  such required information is not applicable.   This  section  shall  not
    10  apply  to  an authenticator's opinion or information concerning a visual
    11  art multiple or work of fine art, as set forth  in  subdivision  twenty-
    12  three of section 11.01 of this title, section 15.12 of this article, and
    13  subdivision four of section 15.15 of this article.
    14    §  3.  The  arts  and  cultural affairs law is amended by adding a new
    15  section 15.12 to read as follows:
    16    § 15.12. Authentication of works of fine art and visual art multiples.
    17  In any civil action brought against an authenticator that arises from or
    18  relates to the authenticator's opinion or information concerning a visu-
    19  al art multiple or work of fine art, the  claimant  shall  specify  with
    20  particularity  in the complaint facts sufficient to support each element
    21  of the claim or claims asserted.
    22    § 4. Subdivisions 4 and 5 of section 15.15 of the  arts  and  cultural
    23  affairs law, as added by chapter 849 of the laws of 1984, are amended to
    24  read as follows:
    25    4.  (a)  In any action to enforce any provision of this article, other
    26  than a civil action brought against an authenticator that arises from or
    27  relates to the authenticator's opinion or information concerning a visu-
    28  al art multiple or work of fine art, the court may allow the  prevailing
    29  purchaser  the  costs  of the action together with reasonable attorneys'
    30  and expert witnesses' fees.
    31    (b) In any civil action brought against an authenticator  that  arises
    32  from or relates to the authenticator's opinion or information concerning
    33  a  visual  art  multiple  or  work  of fine art, the court may allow the
    34  prevailing authenticator the costs of the action together  with  reason-
    35  able  attorneys'  and expert witnesses' fees, provided, however, that no
    36  such costs or fees shall be granted pursuant to this section except upon
    37  a written finding of good  and  just  cause,  which  shall  specify  the
    38  grounds thereof.
    39    (c)  In  the  event,  however,  the court determines that an action to
    40  enforce any provision of this article was brought in bad  faith  it  may
    41  allow  such  expenses  to  the  art  merchant  as  it deems appropriate;
    42  provided, however, that in any civil action brought against an authenti-
    43  cator that arises from or relates  to  the  authenticator's  opinion  or
    44  information  concerning  a  visual  art multiple or work of fine art, no
    45  such expenses shall be assessed or allowed against the authenticator.
    46    5. An action to enforce any liability  under  this  article,  but  not
    47  including  civil actions against authenticators, shall be brought within
    48  the period prescribed for such actions by article  two  of  the  uniform
    49  commercial code.
    50    §  5.  This  act  shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall
    51  have become a law and shall apply to all opinions as to the  authentici-
    52  ty, attribution or authorship of a work of fine art or visual art multi-
    53  ple  provided  to someone other than the authenticator after such effec-
    54  tive date.
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