Co-hosts Sonja and Debra Recall the Origin Story

“Who Wrote That Up For You?” co-hosts Sonja Ebron and Debra Slone took the 29th episode of the show to recollect the events underlying the show’s name. A deliberate strategy of delaying a foreclosure case found them arguing for the right to depose the bank’s lawyer and two vice presidents of the bank. There were discrepancies in the complaint related to a required verification of facts, and Sonja and Debra took full advantage of it to delay answering the complaint for three years.

The oral argument was surreptitiously recorded, and Sonja can be heard urging the court to issue subpoenas for deposition to make the bank account for these discrepancies before the case was allowed to proceed. The judge interrupted the argument near its conclusion to ask, “Who wrote that up for you?”, on the assumption that Sonja and Debra, whom she knew to be self-represented, could not have prepared it. The judge ruled in their favor and directed the clerk to begin the subpoena process for all three witnesses.

The show earned its name because the goal is to empower millions of self-represented litigants to draw this question from judges until they are no longer surprised at credible legal arguments from laypeople. The courts belong to the people, and we the people are coming to claim our courts.

For more on the need to fix U.S. courts, subscribe to “Who Wrote That Up For You?” wherever you listen to podcasts.


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