Proper Courtroom Attire
Founder/Owner THE FIRM, LLC
The only thing that should matter on the day(s) of trial in a family law or personal injury case is the credibility and the demeanor of the client and the witness(es).
However–the truth is–how one is dressed/groomed goes a long way in convincing the Judge the client should be given a favorable outcome.
The Judge may only be with you for a few hours or few days and appearances matter in such a short time.
1. COLORS & GROOMING
a. When in doubt wear a neutral color to court: your browns, blues, whites, and grays are always good.
Always think job interview—the courtroom is an interview for your family law and personal injury case, and the Judge is hiring based on appearance. Colors that may be offensive do not help the case.
Make sure you stay basic/neutral and recommend that all potential witness(es) do the same. Ladies…please be neutral/basic for fingernail polish and make up as well.
Sometimes less is more!
b. Men and women should be ultra conservative in hairstyle. A pin up look for long hair or basic pony tail works best for women.
For men who wear long hair (i.e. braids, dreads, or long hair), the same rule applies. Well groomed facial hair is best for men who wear facial hair.
For men who shave, a slight shadow or clean/fresh shave is acceptable.
2. NO JEANS PLEASE & NO UNDERWEAR SHOWING
a. Now that we have the basic colors and appropriate hairstyles covered, we will tell you what to wear to a family law case or personal injury case.
Ladies first: a nice knee length dress that is not too form fitting is best. The focus should be on your words and not your attire.
Pants are acceptable but should not be too snug. No jeans please. Blouse should also be a nice fit but not tight.
Now…fellas! No jeans please! No pants that are not on the waist. No underwear showing please! A nice button up shirt is fine…a suit is not necessary but is fine: alternative is a jacket and no tie.
For hot summer days, a rugby shirt is okay with slacks…depending on your age and the nature of your case: depends also if you are the client or a witness.
When in doubt, ask your attorney if the wardrobe you have in mind is appropriate.
3. THIS IS A COURTROOM; NOT A NIGHT CLUB OR BEACH
a. The day of your family law or personal injury trial is not the day to put on the new 6 inch heels or the cute sandals.
Be modest in the height of the heels and leave the sandals for the beach.
Less jewelry is always best and if you wear/own a huge engagement ring, it may be best to leave the big rock at home and wear the wedding band only; especially if you are requesting alimony, an injury settlement, or some other type of monetary award.
You are not at trial to impress the audience: the Judge is the only audience that should be impressed and the Judge is not impressed by flamboyance.
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