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What Should I Wear to Court?

Whether you are currently embroiled in the divorce process, facing a criminal charge, or hoping to recover monetary compensation following an injury, there is a chance you will need to appear in court. Your appearance, which includes your wardrobe, your hygiene, and your mannerisms, reflect greatly on you and can considerably influence how you and your case are perceived by others, including the judge and jury presiding over your case. This is why it is critical that you dress appropriately for court.

Court-appropriate outfits can be different for men and women, but the dress code for both sexes can be boiled down to one simple guideline: dress neatly and conservatively.

Dress Like You are Going on a Job Interview

When you are picking out your courtroom outfit, you should choose an outfit that you would feel comfortable wearing to a job interview. Choose an outfit that is tailored to fit your body and does not draw attention in any way. Muted colors, like gray and navy blue, are always the safest choices. Stay away from busy patterns, flashy jewelry, and sharply contrasting pieces within the same outfit.

For men, a suit or a sport jacket over a dress shirt and slacks is the best choice. Wear a tie and dress shoes with this outfit. For women, a suit can also be an ideal choice, as can a blouse with slacks or a skirt or a conservative dress. Women should steer clear of open-toed shoes or any shoes with stiletto heels.

Items that should never be worn in the courtroom include:

  • Jeans;
  • Sneakers;
  • Flip flops;
  • Ugg boots;
  • T-shirts;
  • Tank tops;
  • Shorts;
  • Loud or distracting jewelry;
  • Skirts with hemlines above the knee;
  • and Any type of athletic wear, such as yoga pants and sweatshirts.

Grooming Matters

Your appearance involves more than your clothing. Your hair, skin, makeup, facial hair, and body odor all factor into your overall appearance.

Always shower, brush your teeth, and use deodorant on the day you appear in court. These are non-negotiable.

Men should come to court clean shaven or with neatly-trimmed facial hair. Women who wear makeup should come with minimal, natural-looking makeup. Avoid bold colors or extreme makeup choices. It is also important that both sexes avoid overly-strong perfumes or colognes.

Your hair should be conservative, as well. If it is an unnatural color, dye it to a natural hair color before appearing in court. Edgy or unconventional hairstyles should be cut or styled into less conspicuous styles.

Work with an Experienced La Crosse Attorney

No matter why you need to go to court, you need to dress appropriately. If you are unsure about whether a particular outfit or accessory is appropriate for the courtroom, discuss it with an experienced attorney, depending on your legal needs. Our team at Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd proudly serves clients working through family law, estate planning, business law issues, and more. Contact our firm today to schedule your initial legal consultation with us.

Published February 24, 2016
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