You have a court appearance coming up, and you have a question but aren’t sure who to ask… What to Wear to Court?

Know the Rules

First, you should know that many courtrooms have rules about what NOT to wear. Most courtrooms have a prohibition on shorts. And keep in mind that you must always have a shirt and shoes. No swimwear. No offensive slogans or messages. Many judges do not allow hats.

Looking Your Best

Second, you don’t want to simply clear the bar of clothing that is prohibited, you want to put your best foot forward. We recommend that that foot not be wearing flip flops.

You do not need to wear a suit – leave that to the lawyers. You do not need to go out and buy a whole new outfit. And fancy clothes are not required. You do want to look polished and neat. When in doubt opt to be more covered and conservative in your outfit than not.

Think about what you might wear to church or other religious service. If you were going to an afternoon wedding and knew you would be seated next to your most old fashioned great-aunt, what outfit would you choose? Consider what clothes you might wear for a job interview. These are some of the same considerations for clothing to wear to court.

Be Comfortable in Your Own Skin

A word about comfort. Although you want to look polished and serious, you don’t want to be uncomfortable. Days spent in court can involve a lot of waiting and you don’t want to be itchy, or pulling at your outfit. Having clothes that fit well and don’t distract you is more important than being the most dressed up person in the room.

Please Just Tell Me What to Wear Already!

Still not sure what to wear? Here are some outfits that will not let you down:

For men, wearing khakis or trousers and a button down shirt is always right. If you don’t own a button down shirt, a polo will do. You can add a blazer or a sweater. A tie looks sharp too, but is not necessary. You want to be yourself, but keep your outfit neutral so that the focus is on your testimony not your wardrobe. Consider if you have tattoos or piecings and how those might play.

For women, slacks and a nice top or sweater is great. Go for a dress or skirt, and stockings or tights for a nice look too. If you do wear heels, make sure you can move easily and not trip while moving around. Jewelry and makeup should not be distracting. You want judges and juries focused on what you have to say.

Final Thoughts

While expressing yourself through fashion is great in your day to day, remember that courtrooms are very serious spaces. You want to present yourself in a polished manner that shows respect for the court and the process.

Oh! And it is a good idea to bring a sweater if you get cold easily, many courthouses can be chilly, even during Summer due to air conditioning.


If you have question about an accident or injury, call our experienced personal injury attorneys at Graham & Mauer for a FREE CONSULTATION today.