We would like to believe that what we wear to court bears no significant meaning to the judge, prosecutor, and jury. However, we are always being judged, whether fairly or unfairly.
Since your criminal defense attorney will be the only person speaking to the judge and jury on your behalf, your appearance will offer them the only means to assess your temperament and trustworthiness. So, if you want to maximize your chances of an acquittal or a less severe punishment, it is wise to wear appropriate clothing for your court appearances.
What You Should Wear to Court
Dress conservatively, as if you were going to a wedding, religious service, or nice social function. Additionally, wear clothes that fit. So if you have gained or lost plenty of weight, please purchase something new for your courtroom appearance. If you have tattoos, please make sure they are covered up.
Men should wear a sports coat, long-sleeve button-down shirt with a collar and slacks, and a belt or suspenders to keep your pants up. If you have a suit available, make sure you wear it with a tie. If you have long or unkempt hair, schedule a haircut two weeks prior to your scheduled court appearance. Shave before a court appearance or trim your beard or mustache.
Women should wear a nice dress or a woman’s business suit. Conservative top and long slacks work as well. Shoes should be closed-toed. Wear conservative makeup.
The following are clothes you should NOT be wearing to court:
- Sleeveless or muscle shirt
- Anything too revealing
- Sundress or strapless dress
- Exercise outfit or athletic attire
- Any top with spaghetti straps
- Clothing that is too large or too small