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April 30, 2020

Dress for Success, Even in Video Meetings

As most hearings have moved to remote access, and many of those are being done via video, some lawyers have succumbed to the strong temptation not to dress in business attire, as you would if appearing in person in court. While a T-shirt and sweatpants might be fine for working out, judges will not be impressed. After having one male lawyer appear shirtless for a hearing, and a female lawyer appear from her bedroom under the covers in bed, Circuit Judge Dennis Bailey in Broward County, Florida, had enough and issued a warning in an open letter posted on the Weston Bar Association website. In addition to adhering to dress code, proper grooming was also cited as important. These matters reflect not only on how seriously the lawyer takes the hearing, but also sends a strong signal to their client. As more of us adjust to meetings via video, meeting etiquette is important. So remember, dress for success!