CONSERVATIVE FASHION IN THE COURTROOM
June 9, 2016
After receiving a court date the last thing on one’s mind is “What should I wear?” While pondering on the severity of your case, it is possible to underestimate the importance of proper courtroom attire for your big day. Nevertheless, wearing appropriate clothes to court pays respect to the integrity of the judicial system. Whether you are the lawyer, or the client, proper court attire leaves an impressionable statement when entering the courtroom to argue your case.
“The way we dress affects the way we think, the way we feel, the way we act, and the way others react to us.” –Judith Rasband
Achieving appropriate courtroom attire will help you feel more comfortable in the environment. Everything from how you dress to how you talk can impact your case.
Attorney James Minick issued great advice on how to ensure professionalism in your courtroom attire. The tips are as follows:
Dress conservatively and, when appropriate, wear good quality clothing. If you own a suit, wear it, if not your Sunday best is always safe.
Try to wear slacks instead of shorts and if you do decide to wear shorts make sure they are a respectable length.
Avoid wearing loud colors.
Avoid wearing flip-flops or tall high heels.
Do not wear tinted or dark colored glasses in the courtroom. Judges or bailiffs will ask you to remove them even if you have them on the top of your head.
Wear only functional jewelry (e.g., wedding ring and wrist watch). No large bracelets, chains, rings, cufflinks, tie tacks and earrings (men).
Avoid wearing items that may identify a personal association or belief. Political buttons, club pins, college rings, religious jewelry may trigger some prejudices.
Jerseys or other sports apparel should also be avoided.
Never wear any shirts with vulgar or profane text on it. The courtroom is not the place to make those statements.
Make an effort to conceal any visible tattoos.
Take the loose change out of your pockets. The temptation to fiddle around with it
while you are in front of the judge may become difficult to overcome.
If you are dressed inappropriately in court, you may be asked to leave the courtroom. Professional attire, whether as a client in a case, a witness, an observer, or the attorney, shows respect for the judge who is deciding the case. Dress as if you are going to an important meeting, job interview, or church. Dressing professionally for court will give you the boost of confidence you need while dealing with an unwanted case. See you in court!