When Court Moves Online, Do Dress Codes Still Matter?

“Better resourced law firms will have the means to ensure that their attorneys appear in the best possible light — both figurative and literal light,” Mr. Keith stated.

In an electronic mail on Wednesday, Jack Tuter, the chief choose of the 17th Circuit, stated that he had not reviewed Judge Bailey’s letter earlier than publication and that it didn’t replicate official coverage within the circuit. In Family Court, he stated, “many folks are self-representing and may or may not follow dress code rules.”

“As such,” Judge Tuter added, “we have expected appropriate dress but not necessarily enforced it.”

Judge Bailey, who didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark, famous in his letter that video platforms like Zoom could make it simpler for legal professionals to speak over each other, and over the choose.

“Often,” he wrote, “lawyers are not looking at their screens but down at their files, their outlines and notes, or simply out the window, and cannot see the judge is hollering, ‘Stop! Stop!’ because an objection has been made and the audio stays with the witness rather than obeying the judge.”

Mia Singh, a lawyer in Broward County and the president of the Weston Bar Association there, stated she agreed with Judge Bailey. “I have seen employees on the other side of meetings looking like they literally rolled out of bed,” she stated. “I don’t take them as seriously.”

For years, Ms. Singh has been organizing conferences the place legal professionals and judges — together with Judge Bailey, her former boss — discuss store. During the coronavirus pandemic, she needed to make these connections on-line and regarded placing collectively a e-newsletter for legal professionals.

She was in search of candid enter — freed from stuffy legalese — and requested Judge Bailey to jot down one thing for a collection referred to as “Virtual View From the Bench.” She stated that after he emailed his letter to her, she despatched it to her community of legal professionals throughout Broward County, and her bar affiliation posted it on-line.

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