An attorney's badge is a defense lawyer's main piece of identification for legal purposes. They are mainly composed of silver adorned with gold plating, and have a number on the back that denotes the owner's ID number. However, one can still fool the court using a fake badge, as Furio Tigreonce did with a cardboard version. This badge design was also used by Japanese defense attorneys during the Meiji period, albeit on an armband rather than as a lapel pin. Attorneys in the Kingdom of Khura'in also wear badges that have a similar design.
The attorney's badge can almost always be found in the court record, as a defense attorney requires it as proof of their occupation. Defense attorneys appear quite proud of their badges, although Phoenix Wright in particular seems to have been very fond of his. Attorneys occasionally need to present their badge to offer to take people's cases, though usually Wright just flashes it proudly whilst his audience makes a disparaging remark or dismisses it entirely. In contrast, prosecutors also have badges, but rarely wear them since they are state-appointed.
Phoenix Wright has lost his badge twice. The first time was when Money, a monkey performing at the Berry Big Circus, stole it. The second and much more serious time was when Wright was disbarred; he had his badge taken from him by Bar Association, and so had to investigate without it (although he would be eventually reinstated and reunited with his badge). Wright also once lent it to Miles Edgeworth, so that the latter could investigate on his behalf and take his place in court.
The design of the badge is of a sunflower with the scales of justice in the center and is based upon the real badges worn by defense attorneys in Japan. Sunflowers are seen to symbolize freedom and justice owing to their habit of always facing the sun.
Diego Armando and Raymond Shields are, to date, the only defense attorneys met in-game who do not openly wear their attorney badges. In contrast, not wearing prosecutor's badges is the norm among prosecutors. However, despite never wearing his prosecutor's badge, Miles Edgeworth openly wore the attorney badge Wright gave him during his brief time as a defense attorney.
In Rise from the Ashes, if the player presents Wright's badge to Ema Skye, she scientifically analyzes its composition as mostly silver, with gold plating that is "flaking a bit". Noting the lack of "corrosion due to sulfides", Skye goes on to offer Wright $50 for it, which the latter refuses.
Examining the ID number on the back of Wright's badge in Rise from the Ashes triggers a conservation between Skye and Wright where he states that, since each badge has its own unique ID number, an attorney would be found out straight away if they tried to lend it to someone else. However, this did not stop him from lending the badge to Edgeworth in Bridge to the Turnabout, with no-one (aside from the presiding prosecutor) appearing to notice the deception.