How NOT to Dress for Court Appearances

Although most of family law procedures are handled outside of the courtroom, there are times when court appearances may become necessary. When they are, dressing appropriately can make a big difference in how you are perceived. A good appearance, is your first goal in presenting a good case.

If you want appear confident, prepared and ready for court, do NOT follow the below listed suggestions. In fact, do the opposite of the below listed directions.

However, if your case is not important to you, go ahead and do the following. (REMEMBER, THESE SUGGESTIONS ARE NOT RECOMMENDED IF YOUR CASE IS IMPORTANT TO YOU!)

Personal Hygiene:

  • Unwashed or unshaven (unkempt/dirty beards)
  • Too much cologne or perfume, or your own body odor
  • Tattoos (don’t hide them)
  • Lots and lots of makeup
  • Long, long fingernails, especially bizarre colors/designs
  • The scents of alcohol, bad breath, marijuana/cigarette smoke


  • Cut-offs/shorts
  • Exercise/athletic apparel
  • Sexy-type clothes
  • T-shirts, crop-tops, anything sleeveless
  • Jeans
  • Anything dirty or stained, too tight or too loose

Hats: Any kind, especially baseball caps with logos, pictures or sayings!

Sunglasses (non-medically prescribed): The bigger and the darker, the better!

Jewelry: Lots, and lots, especially the stuff that makes noise when you move, or expensive stuff that shows just how really, really rich you are!


  • Thong/flip-flop type (especially the kind that make a lot of noise when you walk!
  • Open-toed and/or spiky-type high heels
  • Sandals, especially beachy-type
  • Sneakers/athletic shoes (high tops, YAY!)


  • Dirty, greasy, wet, stringy, messy…
  • Strange (unusual or weird) hairstyle or cut
  • Unnatural colors (green or purple hair, Yay!)

Remember, these are the things you do when you do NOT care about your case. If you do care about your case, next week’s blog will provide suggestions for appropriate court dressing for both men and women.

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