Required court apparel for call

Every candidate for call to the bar must appear before Convocation in full court apparel, which consists of:

Legal attire for men

Legal attire for women

Candidates are encouraged to make arrangements to either purchase or rent court apparel at least one and a half months before the call to ensure they will have full court apparel for the day of the ceremony.

The clothes worn to the call to the bar in Ontario are the same that are worn for a court appearance in many common law jurisdictions around the world. Variations on this legal wear go back to the 17th century and derive from the style of clothing worn by nobles at the time. When fashion changed, some professions, including the law, retained them as a symbol of their professional identity. Legal dress expresses the dignity of the court and as such, needs to be worn appropriately. It is generally bad form to wear your robe outside of the courthouse.

Court dress is worn at the call to the bar because new Barristers-at-Law are being presented to the courts at the ceremony. In the early days of the Law Society this was done by walking from Convocation Room to the other side of Osgoode Hall. Today, a Special Sitting of the Court of Appeal for Ontario and the Superior Court of Justice is convened wherever the ceremony takes place. As a result of this procedure, the gowning rules of both the Superior Court of Justice and the Court of Appeal for Ontario apply to new Barristers-at Law present at the call to the bar ceremony.

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