Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Appearances at Hearings Can Matter
A September article in the Wall Street Journal highlights how judges and juries may take a person’s appearance into account during a trial. While common sense dictates that parties appearing in court, or before administrative agencies, should dress appropriately, the WSJ article from Thursday, September 2, 2010, written by Christina Binkley and entitled “Opening Statement: What to Wear to Court” provides a good reminder that proper attire shows respect for the tribunal, shows that the person is taking the proceeding seriously, and can even send a more subtle message about the party or witness. While the appearance of a person should not make or break a case, the article is a good reminder that a tribunal may look beyond objective facts, and may consider appearances when making judgments about credibility. The article focuses on the courtroom, but the message holds true for administrative hearings and even meetings with investigators or auditors.
-Submitted By Christopher Pyles, Esq.