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How Should I Dress to My Workers Compensation Hearing?

I get asked a lot by clients how they should dress to their hearings at the Industrial Commission of Arizona.  First, as a general rule, don’t do what one of my clients did and wear a t-shirt with a picture of a half naked woman on it that says “F.B.I. – Female Body Inspector” – women judges generally frown on that.  Or don’t do what another client of mine did and plop down on the witness stand your hat that has a pair of boobs and a pickup truck on it and the words “If it’s got t*ts or tires, it’s bound to cause problems.”  That lessens your credibility as a witness right off the bat. 

I always tell clients that you should dress as nicely as you can for your hearing.  It is a very serious matter.  Oftentimes your future livelihood depends on its outcome.  The way you dress tells the judge how seriously you take it.  I’m not saying to wear a suit or tuxedo – definitely don’t dress better than your lawyer.  But a nice pair of jeans or slacks and a shirt with a collar is appropriate. 

If you have an orthopedic device, like a leg or back brace, wear it underneath your clothing.  Wearing a leg brace over a pair of jeans just looks like you are screaming for attention.  Also, don’t do what another client of mine did and bring a bible and hold it the entire hearing. That’s a little over the top…

These are just a few friendly tips from Snow, Carpio, and Weekley.