Thanks to Maryland Wayland, Retail Merchants Association member, for representing VRF at the bill signing.

Have you heard of “patent trolling?”  

It occurs when patent trollers threaten Virginia businesses by sending demand letters threatening costly litigation if payment is not remitted. 

The threat of litigation is cost prohibitive for the retail business, so they often settle for significant amounts. 

VRF worked with a coalition of Virginia business organizations to develop legislation that establishes criteria that indicate a patent may be made in “bad faith” (e.g. deceptive, no patent number referenced, no description of the specific violation or the product that is supposedly covered by the patent). 

The Attorney General now has the authority to investigate and prosecute bad faith patent assertion violations. 

SB 150 and HB 375 were signed into law by Governor McAuliffe. Marilyn Wayland, of Free Agents Marketing, represented VRF at the bill signing.

For more information:

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VRF Lobbyist

The "Carytown Cupcake Law" Goes Into Effect

Carytown Cupcakes' customers can now enjoy a variety of drinks with their dessert.

Carytown Cupcakes customers can now enjoy a beer with their dessert. Photos by Michael Thompson.


The Virginia Retail Federation had the opportunity to come along side Retail Merchants Association member, Carytown Cupcakes, as the owners traded their baker's hats for lobbyist caps.

Dawn and Albert Schick, Carytown Cupcake owners, were instrumental catalysts in helping bring about the passage of Senate Bill 502, a change to Virginia ABC law that expands the sorts of booze that a bakery can serve.

“We had to find a law that we could start with,” said Dawn Schick. “Our purpose is to serve some of our cupcakes with some of the craft beers and wines that are in some of our cooking already.”

Are you a retailer with a legislative issue or a hurdle to overcome?
Let the Virginia Retail Federation help fight for you.
Contact one of our lobbyists today!

Read the Richmond BizSense article.


Governor McAuliffe announced that June will be designated as Virginia’s Business Appreciation Month to ensure that the history and growth of Virginia businesses are recognized across the Commonwealth. 


See the proclamation below:
By virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution of Virginia in the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, there is hereby officially recognized:


WHEREAS, Virginia businesses provide a wide array of products and services to customers throughout the world, and employ nearly 4 million people throughout the Commonwealth; and

WHEREAS, Virginia is currently home to more than 30 Fortune 1,000 firms and more than 70 firms with annual revenues in excess of $1 billion; and 

WHEREAS, Virginia ranks among the top ten states best prepared—in knowledge, innovation and internet technology—to navigate the  demands of an increasingly globalized economy; and

WHEREAS, Virginia businesses employ a diverse, high-skilled workforce—including the largest concentration of high-tech workers in the country—and generate increased economic opportunity and well-being for all Virginians; and

WHEREAS, Business Appreciation Month is an opportunity to acknowledge the essential role our thriving business community plays in contributing to a stronger, more prosperous Commonwealth; 

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Terence R. McAuliffe do hereby recognize June 2014 as BUSINESS APPRECIATION MONTH in the COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of our citizens. 


May 25-31, 2014

Virginia retailers who sell certain hurricane preparedness merchandise are required to participate in the upcoming statewide Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday. During this seven-day period, retailers will not collect and remit the sales tax, which is generally 5.3% (6% in certain jurisdictions) on exempt items.

Eligible merchandise includes emergency supplies costing $60 or less per item as well as portable generators, generator power cords, inverters and inverter power cables priced at $1,000 or less per item.

Click here to see the full list of eligible items exempt from sales tax.

You can also visit the Virginia Department of Taxation's website for more details.


Contact the Virginia Retail Federation.

June 1, 2014 is the implementation date for Henrico County, Virginia's food and beverage tax, or "meals tax." Retail establishments that serve prepared foods, such as restaurants, amusement parks, mobile food services, cafeterias, deli counters and push carts will be required to collect a 4% meals tax, and remit it to Henrico County on the 20th of each month. 3% of the total collection is a "hold back" for the retailer. Registration is required in order for a certificate to be issued by Henrico County.

You are encouraged to consult Henrico County's website for specifics about implementation of the meals tax collection. There are many details businesses must follow in order to comply with the collection process. For example:

  • Discretionary gratuity is not taxed; however, non-discretionary gratuity added to the cost of the meal over 20% is taxed.
  • Beverages not sold with a meal are not taxed; however, beverages sold with a meal are taxed.
  • Grocery items, such as salads (potato, macaroni, etc.) sold by the pound, whole cakes or pies, coffee beans and other dry goods, and ice cream sold in bulk, are not taxed.

Contact information for Henrico County:

Susan Layne, 804.501.7354 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Steve Klos, 804.501.7329 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Click for more Henrico County Meals Tax information