Talent agency Rebel Entertainment Partners filed a lawsuit on Monday against Judge Judy claiming that they have not received contractually obligated payments for “Judge Judy” since 2010 because the show is losing money due to Sheindlin’s annual salary of as much as $47 million.
Judge Judy immediately responded by issuing a statement slamming the lawsuit.
“The fact that Richard Lawrence is complaining about my salary is actually hilarious,” Sheindlin said in a statement, according to Fox News. “I met Mr. Lawrence for 2 hours some 21 years ago. Neither I nor anyone involved in the day-to-day production of my program has heard from him in 20 years. Not a card, not a gift, not a flower, not a congratulations. Yet he has somehow received over $17,000,000 from my program. My rudimentary math translates that into $8,500,000 an hour for Mr. Lawrence. Not a bad payday. Now complaining about not getting enough money, that’s real chutzpah!”
Judge Judy renewed her contract with CBS back in 2013 and she signed an extension in 2015. Rebel Entertainment Partners’ successor-in-interest claimed in their suit that in “the six-month accounting period after Scheindlin’s pay raise … defendants reported net profits of negative $3,195,217.” It went on to claim that “in the six-month accounting period prior to Scheindlin’s pay raise, the show reported net profits of $3,572,195, of which 5% ($178,609) was paid to Rebel.”
The lawsuit calls Judge Judy’s salary “grossly inconsistent with customary practice in the television industry.”