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Wear appropriate clothes for child custody proceedings

On Behalf of | Dec 28, 2022 | Firm News |

January, known in some circles as ”divorce month,” is right around the corner. Children’s well-being is a central focus for many divorcing parents. Certain seemingly benign issues, such as what a parent wears to court, may influence an Oregon family court’s decision more than one might realize. Child custody proceedings can be intense, and any parent who hopes to win the court’s favor will want to make sure to dress respectfully for court.  

Many people make the mistake of thinking that clothing does not matter when they are trying to win custody of their children in a divorce. However, when a parent wants to convince the court that children are best off in his or her custody, a clean-cut, professional appearance has a better chance of doing so than blue jeans or an unkempt style and appearance. There are several things to keep in mind when dressing for court.  

A courtroom-appropriate appearance goes beyond clothing 

A concerned parent should not only pay attention to clothing in court but also his or her hair, makeup and accessories. An overall look and style that is respectable for court is one that is neat, clean and, preferably, business casual style. Excessive accessorizing or extreme hairstyles or clothing choices are not a good idea.  

Visiting a courtroom before proceedings is helpful 

A parent who is gearing up for child custody proceedings in an Oregon family court may want to attend some court hearings ahead of time that are open to the public. They can then observe what others wear to court and whether or not the judges overseeing the cases seem to have a reaction to a particular style of clothing, like torn jeans or flip-flop sandals. It’s also advisable to check a court’s website to see if there is a dress code listed. Finally, it is helpful for parents to discuss their cases ahead of time with an experienced family law attorney, who can make recommendations about the proceedings, including courtroom attire.