By: James Davis
Even though I may make a joke from time to time while in court, the reason we are there is no laughing matter. Whether you are a defendant in a criminal case or involved in a civil matter, your appearance speaks volumes. I routinely see people wearing shorts, tank-tops and team jerseys to court. When you dress in this fashion it tells the judge that you do not take your case or his courtroom serious. A judge’s courtroom is akin to his home. You do not want to have a judge think you are disrespecting him in his home. Some judges will not allow you into their courtroom if your appearance does not meet their approval.
I’m not telling you to go buy an expensive suit for court. For men, I suggest a pair of pants and a long sleeve shirt. If you can add a tie, do so. I have even tied a clients’ tie before when they had no idea how to do it. (I want every advantage I can get in court for a client). For women, I suggest a conservative dress or anything other than shorts / jeans with a top that shows off your stomach. While I certainly enjoy the show, I assure you judges do not.
You want the court and opposing counsel to believe you know how important your case is to you. Give yourself and your lawyer any little advantage you can by looking the part.
Just my thoughts… James Davis