One of the dumbest things I've seen lately is that the State of New Jersey has an "Interior Design Examination And Evaluation Committee" within the Department of Law and Public Safety. According to its Internet site, the "Committee is responsible for protecting the public's health and safety by determining the qualifications of interior designers seeking certification in this State, establishing standards for certification, and disciplining licensees who do adhere to those requirements."

Fortunately, however, a person can open an interior design business in New Jersey without the Committee's blessing. According to Assembly Bill 565, which was enacted as the "Interior Designers Certification Act" on October 22, 2002, the law "does not prohibit persons who are not certified pursuant to the bill from rendering interior design services or calling themselves interior designers, but those persons cannot identify themselves as a "certified interior designer" unless certified in accordance with the provisions of this bill."

So, the entire thrust of the law is to define exactly who can call themselves a "certified interior designer" instead of just a regular "interior designer." Gotta love it.

I suppose that we should be grateful that New Jersey doesn't force interior designers to become state licensed or certified to practice their profession. Other states, such as Florida, require interior designers to be licensed. See article on Interior Designers in New Mexico, article on Florida, and the videos below.

In case anyone is interested in witnessing the Committee's critically important work, its next meeting is on July 1, 2009, 9 a.m., at 124 Halsey Street, Newark, New Jersey 07101.

John Paff
Somerset, New Jersey