Hey, Counselor No Pants, cut that out! No one on earth wants to see you at a video conference in your jammies, least of all Judge Dennis Bailey of the Broward County Circuit Court.
“One comment that needs sharing and that is the judges would appreciate it if the lawyers and their clients keep in mind these Zoom hearings are just that: hearings. They are not casual phone conversations,” His Honor wrote in a letter posted to the Weston Bar Association’s website. “It is remarkable how many ATTORNEYS appear inappropriately on camera.”
“ATTORNEYS?” Do tell!
“We’ve seen many lawyers in casual shirts and blouses, with no concern for ill-grooming, in bedrooms with the master bed in the background, etc,” he continued. “One male lawyer appeared shirtless and one female attorney appeared still in bed, still under the covers.”
So many questions! Were Mr. Sunsout Gunsout and Ms. Florence Nightgown at the same hearing? Would it have been preferable for the female attorney to get out from under the covers? If the Court objects to “ill-grooming” in April, exactly what does it expect will happen in May when we’ve all been cruelly separated from barbers and hair salons for two straight months?
And where besides the bedroom are parents of small children supposed to lock themselves for a few seconds of peace and privacy during a hearing? Not outside by the pool, apparently!
“And putting on a beach cover-up won’t cover up you’re poolside in a bathing suit,” Judge Bailey warned. “So, please, if you don’t mind, let’s treat court hearings as court hearings, whether Zooming or not.”
“I would want [attorneys] dressed showing some respect for their recognition that this is a court hearing,” the man who shows up for work every day of the year in a shapeless black smock told the Miami Herald.
In conclusion, no muumuus, no stubble, no PJs, no visible bedroom furniture, and NO SHOES, NO SHIRT, NO SERVICE.
A Letter from the Honorable Dennis Bailey [Weston Bar Association]
Broward judge tells lawyers to get out of bed and wear a shirt for Zoom hearings [Miami Herald]
Elizabeth Dye (@5DollarFeminist) lives in Baltimore where she writes about law and politics.
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