During my 30 years of practicing family law, I have had the opportunity to observe courtroom dress in divorce cases throughout Palm Beach County, around the State of Florida, and in several states.
I am still sometimes shocked at what I see people wearing in the Florida divorce courtrooms. People seem to forget that they are appearing in a court of law. Divorce attorneys around the country also would agree with me. In a court of law, judges, court personnel, attorneys, and other litigants are entitled to respect. Part of showing respect for the court and its participants is dressing appropriately.
Some basic rules to follow are:
- Understand that the courtroom is a formal, serious place and that judges are generally conservative;
- Choose appropriate clothing that you are comfortable wearing.You will look nervous and shifty if you are constantly adjusting your clothes in court;
- Wear a suit, dress, or blouse and skirt if you are a woman. Do not wear spike-heel sandals or open-toed shoes. Be sure that your bra and slip are not showing;
- If you are a man, then wear a suit, jacket and tie, or shirt and tie (only if you don’t own a jacket);
- Don’t wear too much “bling”. Your selection of jewelry should be modest an conservative; and
- One also should avoid sneakers, trendy clothing, lots of jewelry, loud colors (especially red), and revealing outfits. Don’t wear a lot of perfume, cologne, or aftershave. Wearing leather often is not advisable. Please remember not to wear jeans, mini skirts, shorts, tube tops, halter tops, T‑shirts, sweatpants, hats, and flip-flops.
This does not mean that a person has to be rich or spend lots of money in order to wear appropriate attire in a Florida divorce courtroom. My mother always told me: “As long as you are clean and dressed in your Sunday best, you should never be ashamed to go anywhere”. This common sense approach will go a long way in making a good presentation to the judge and to the court. If you ever find yourself in court, use this tried and true principle. If you do so, you should not go wrong.
Board Certified Marital and Family Law Attorney Charles D. Jamieson understands that divorce is an extremely sensitive and important issue. Thanks to extensive experience and a focus on open communication, Attorney Jamieson adeptly addresses the complex issues surrounding divorce while delivering excellent personal service. To discuss divorce in Florida, please contact The Law Firm of Charles D. Jamieson, P.A.The Law Firm of Charles D. Jamieson, P.A. or call 561-478-0312.