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How to Get on Judge Judy and Other Court TV shows

Camila Lopez - Small Claims Procedure - July 5, 2024

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    Who doesn’t love Judge Judy? Our clients are always asking us, how do I get on Judge Judy or another court TV show? Well, look no further. In this article we break down how to get on Judge Judy and other court TV shows. 

    In this article we will cover the following court TV shows: 

    • Judge Judy, or her new show Judy Justice

    • The People’s Court

    • Chrissy’s Court

    • Judge Mathis

    • The Hot Bench

    If being featured on court TV isn’t for you or if the person you are suing doesn't agree to be on TV, you may want to consider taking them to small claims court (real court) instead (review our 50-state guide to small claims court)

    How do Judge Judy and Other Court TV Shows work? 

    Our clients are always very curious on how court TV works. In the following sections, we go backstage to show you how court TV shows like Judge Judy work.

    Court TV is actually arbitration

    Everyone always seems to wonder, are Judge Judy cases real? Yes, most Court TV shows feature real cases. What is not real, is that court TV shows are not “real court” but rather a legal procedure called “arbitration.”’

    Arbitration is a procedure that looks like a real court hearing. This hearing is overseen by a neutral third-party (an arbitrator). In court TV shows, the “arbitrator” is the “judge” you see on TV – so Judge Judy and Judge Mathis are actually arbitrators. However, if they were previously real judges, they are still referred to as “judge” as a sign of respect. 

    The other party has to agree to be on the show

    One key aspect of court TV shows like Judge Judy, is that both parties have to agree to be on the show. If one party doesn’t agree, the case will not be featured on the court tv show. It tends to be very difficult to get the party being sued to agree to being on court TV because they legally don’t need to accept.

    If you are thinking about suing someone, consider sending them a demand letter first as many disputes are resolved out of court. We have a free tool that helps you create a demand letter. Check out our demand letter tool.

    Here is a video on how our demand letter tool works:

    Many court TV shows pay you to be on the show 

    When producers find cases that they think will be entertaining to watch and will do well on television, they are eager to have both parties involved. Generally speaking, the show will have a certain budget set aside for each case; this budget changes from show to show but can range between $1,000 to $10,000 per case. 

    When the judge hears the case, the judge makes a decision of how much one side should win. On TV, the judge will tell the losing party that they will need to pay a certain amount to the other side but in reality, many show’s producers will pay the winning party the amount the losing party owes as an incentive to appear on court tv.

    From the perspective of the person being sued, this is great! Yes, while you may be airing your dirty laundry on national television, you don’t have to pay the other party if you lose and you may also receive an appearance fee. 

    How do I sign up to be on court TV?

    There are generally 2 main ways to be selected to participate on Court TV: 

    1. If you have an interesting case that makes good television, producers may reach out to you expressing their interest. Producers can find your case because once you file in small claims with the courthouse, the filing information is made public. Producers often scour through these cases to find anything interesting for their show

    2. You can go directly to the website of the show you want to appear on, and apply through their website.

    What not to do? I recently saw a TikTok of someone saying that he and his friends would file lawsuits in small claims for fun to get on court TV shows. You should never do this. When you are filing a case in real small claims court, you are certifying under oath that what you are claiming in the lawsuit is true and you can be penalized for lying to the court. 

    How to get on Judge Judy

    Court TV shows have been a popular source of entertainment dating back to the 1950’s and reached new heights in the mid 1990’s. But the show that stands above all others, is Emmy winning Judge Judy. 

    Unfortunately, Judge Judy came to an end after the 2021 season. Fortunately for her loyal fans, Judge Judy chose not to retire and created a new show with a new network called Judy Justice. The basis for the show is the same and features her granddaughter Sarah Rose. 

    While Judy Justice producers may reach out to you after filing your lawsuit in small claims, you can always apply to be on the show. Here are the steps to get on the Judge Judy show (Judy Justice): 

    1. Go to the Judy Justice case submission webpage here.

    2. Click the submit your case button and fill out all the information accurately. 

    3. Submit and wait! 

    How to get on The People’s Court

    If you are interested in being featured on The People’s Court, hosted by Warner Bros, the application process is simple and similar to other similar shows. Here are the steps for getting on The People’s Court: 

    1. Go to The People’s Court case submission portal linked here.

    2. Fill out all the information requested honestly and correctly.

    3. Once done, hit send submission and you’re good to go!

    How to get on Chrissy’s Court

    Chrissy’s court is one of the latest takes on courtroom tv shows. At the time of writing this article, producers are still looking for cases to feature on their new season. If you choose to submit your case for consideration please follow the steps below:

    Here are the steps for getting on Chrissy’s Court: 

    1. Go to the Chrissy Court submission portal linked here.

    2. Fill out all the information requested honestly and correctly.

    3. Once you have done that, click Apply and your application is complete and submitted!

    How to get on Judge Mathis

    Unlike most of the other courtroom tv shows, Judge Mathis has 3 ways to potentially appear on the show. The first, like almost all others, is that the Judge Mathis producers may contact you indicating their interest in bringing you on the show. If you want to be proactive and increase your chances of getting on the Judge Mathis show, you can take the following steps: 

    1. Call Judge Mathis toll free number: 1-888-V-E-R-D-I-C-T You must be ready to give a short description of the case and make sure to leave your contact information in the case the producers want to get in contact with you.

    2. Fill out and submit the form on the Judge Mathis submission portal linked here. Make sure you fill out all the information truthfully and correctly. 

    How to get on The Hot Bench

    If you are interested in appearing on the Hot Bench, the application process is simple and you can get started on it right now. Follow these steps to apply to appear on the Hot Bench:

    1. Go to the submission portal on the Hot Bench website linked here.

    2. Fill out all the information requested honestly and correctly.

    3. Once you have completed the form, click submit and wait for a response!


    Camila Lopez

    Legal Educator @ People Clerk. Camila holds a law degree and is a certified mediator. Her passion is breaking down complicated legal processes so that people without an attorney can get justice.

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