Courtroom Appearance-What Impression Will You Make?

courtroomWhether it be a first impression or a lasting one, we can all agree that the impression you make on someone can be impactful. Appearance, body language, tone of voice or choice of words are just some examples of the nuances that form an impression. Although we always desire a favorable impression, think of how important it is if you are required to appear before a judge during the pendency of your case. When preparing for court, it is advisable to take time to see how you are presenting yourself. You can maintain respect for the Judge and the judicial system, while giving yourself the best chance for serious consideration, by following a few simple tips:

Promptness: Plan for everything and anything that can go wrong in your commute. Leave yourself extra time to arrive on time. If you are planning to meet with your attorney prior to the appearance, schedule your time accordingly. You and your attorney want to be prepared in front of the Judge as it shows respect for the Court’s time.

Appearance: You are at a courthouse; not a grocery store. Leave the jeans, shorts, t-shirts, flip flops and gym shoes at home. Opt for a casual business outfit and tidy grooming.

Body language: Be open, receptive and responsive. Crossing your arms, rolling your eyes, or muttering under your breath, do not give a good impression. Furthermore, looking down at your phone or watch suggests that you are not attending to the current situation. Remember that opposing counsel and/or the presiding Judge are watching your reactions.

Tone of Voice: Keep your tone of voice even throughout the proceedings. If you disagree with the conversation or feel yourself getting angry, take a breath before you speak.

Communication: Using derogatory words is never a good idea. Talk in complete sentences, and make eye contact with the person to whom you are speaking. Finally, never text or use your cell phone (if permitted in the courthouse) while court is in session.

While we handle the legal preparation, you can take care of your courtroom demeanor. As always, we are happy to consult with you regarding courtroom preparation or any other Family Law matter. With effective preparation and care, you are sure to make a great impression!


This is a legal advertisement from Sterk Family Law Group. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be construed as such. This article is for informational and educational purposes only.

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