Government Affairs

Legislation has a huge and growing affect on the automotive specialty-equipment market. The outcome of these legislative initiatives frequently impacts the way products are made, distributed and marketed. SEMA has a proven legislative and regulatory program led by a professional staff based in Washington, D.C. that continually works on behalf of the membership. The program includes a number of components that together have resulted in a long list of successes of significant benefit to the industry.

SEMA Member Guide to the New Health Care Law

The "Affordable Care Act" is sowing confusion for many SEMA members. The new health care law is being phased-in over a number of years and January 2014 is the deadline for larger companies to offer coverage or pay a penalty.



Over the years, SEMA has received many requests from members seeking information about Federal and State emissions compliance requirements. In many cases, there has been confusion about the process by which requirements can be met and Executive Orders (E.O.s) from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) are issued for applicable parts and systems. In the past, SEMA has provided information and outlined compliance steps. However, we’ve learned there are ways to further simplify the process. So, to assist our members in understanding the requirements and to identify ways to minimize both cost and time in reaching compliance status, we’ve collected information that addresses these issues in a very user-friendly way.

All businesses have tangible assets: buildings, machines, and accounts receivable. Companies have intangible assets too: trademarks, patents, copyrights, reputation, and goodwill. SEMA places a high premium on the protection of trademarks, patents, and copyrights, also known as intellectual property (IP).

I am not the world’s greatest authority on the subject of cars and propulsion systems, but I’m probably pretty high on the list in Congress. Some people want cars to go away entirely. Others think we are headed to all electrics, all hybrids or fuel cells. Of course, there are 130 million cars and trucks in the United States today, which are almost entirely powered by gasoline.

Any good idea or product is worth protecting—especially if it’s the mainstay of your business’ success. However, the process of protecting your intellectual property (IP) may seem daunting.

The laws and regulations that govern how SEMA members do business have an increased and growing impact on the way automotive specialty-equipment products are made, distributed and marketed.

Intellectual Property Rights Guide

The information contained herein is current as of August 2008; however, please be advised that the law is subject to change.


Federal Regulation of Aftermarket Parts



The materials below describe how motor vehicle parts are regulated by the federal government. It is generally presented in a question/answer format, with links to resources for more information.

Disclaimer: The information presented here is current at the time of posting and will be updated periodically as warranted, however, manufacturers should always consult the latest published regulations for any recent changes.



Government Affairs Staff

Stuart Gosswein, Sr. Director, Federal Government Affairs Neal Billig, Research Manager
Christian Robinson, Director of PAC and Congressional Affairs Jim McFarland, Technical Consultant
Colby Martin, Director of Government and Public Affairs Daniel Ingber, Chief Corporate Counsel
Eric Snyder, Director of Congressional Affairs Dana Palmer, Office Administrator