What do I wear to court (is there a dress code)?

There is an official dress code for attorneys, and an unofficial one for everyone else.  If you want to play it safe, dress like you’re going to church.


Attorneys:          male attorneys are required to wear a shirt, tie, dress pants, and a suit coat

female attorneys wear business wear (generally a business pants suit)

Non-attorneys:  best wear would be church clothing (shirt and tie and slacks or a dress).

However, most of my clients show up in their normal jeans and t-shirts without a problem.

341 Meeting:

Attorneys:           there is no official dress code

(but most attorneys wear a shirt and tie or business pants suit).

Too casual = unprofessional.

Non-attorneys:  church clothing would be nice, but again, clients seem to be fine with a t-shirt and jeans.

Today, I forgot my suit coat.  I didn’t actually forget, but my trunk suit (the emergency blazer I keep in my trunk for court for the past 8 years) was not there.  I had to borrow the jacket from another attorney who is much taller and broader than I am.  Thus, the picture below:  20150210_094701

I once wore a leather jacket to court, like Joe Pesci in My Cousin Vinny (one of the finest lawyer movies ever).  Judge Mosier took one look at me and said, “Mr. Payne, you may want to speak with your tailor before appearing in my court room again.”

Wear something a little nicer than usual.  Church wear is perfect, but try to avoid the cut off short-shorts and tank top look.  You may look fantastic, but court is a bit more formal.