Pro Se Nation is a half-hour program that airs on Princeton (NJ) community television each week. It highlights some of the struggles in getting justice when you’re in court without a lawyer.
Host MaryLynn Schiavi knows the experience all too well. In 2007, she lost her job in what she considered unfair circumstances, so she sued. She managed to get a summary judgment for the defendant overturned on appeal but then lost the case in a jury trial. Her pro se appeal of that judgment ended with a per curiam affirmance. (Ouch! Those are the worst.)
As I know too well, a painful loss in court can make you dedicate your career to correcting and preventing injustices.
We all know Brian Vukadinovich as the former Indiana shop teacher who sued the local school board in 2016 for wrongful termination suit and won his case after a five-day jury trial. He and MaryLynn covered a lot of ground in the half-hour interview (see video below):
- An overview of Brian’s federal case, why it took so long to complete, and why he chose to go pro se.
- The reaction of his adversaries when he won the case.
- What he learned about litigation and his treatment by court personnel.
- The kinds of cases that are more suitable for pro se’s to handle.
- Advice to those considering going pro se, and the most important things to keep in mind.
- Suggested changes to the American legal system that could improve the experience for pro se litigants.
Here’s Brian on Pro Se Nation:
The program premiered on May 17th (2018) and streams for a final time on June 7th at 7:30 p.m. ET. Add Princeton Community TV to your Roku to catch the stream.
It’s great to see the problems of pro se litigants discussed in the media. It’s even better to see our successes. So if you’ve got a story about your experience in court to share, reach out to MaryLynn Schiavi at Pro Se Nation and tell the world.