Bates v. Leprino Foods Company et al

Filing 54

ORDER GRANTING Plaintiff's 33 Request to Seal Documents signed by District Judge Anthony W. Ishii on 9/16/2022. (Sant Agata, S)

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1 2 3 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 4 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 5 6 7 CHARLES BATES, an individual, on behalf of himself and all members of the putative class 8 9 10 11 12 13 Plaintiff CASE NO. 2:20-CV-00700-AWI-BAM ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S REQUEST TO SEAL DOCUMENTS v. (Doc. No. 33-1) LEPRINO FOODS COMPANY, a Colorado Corporation; LEPRINO FOODS DAIRY PRODUCTS COMPANY, a Colorado Corporation; and DOES 1–100, inclusive, Defendants 14 15 Currently before the Court is Plaintiff Charles Bates’s request to file under seal 16 indefinitely, pursuant to Local Rule 141, Defendants Leprino Foods Company and Leprino Foods 17 Dairy Products Company’s training policies regarding the use of its time clocks and time keeping 18 system, and portions of its Handbook and operative policies, which, under Defendants’ 19 representation, contain proprietary and confidential business information. See Doc. Nos. 33, 33-1. 20 “Historically, courts have recognized a ‘general right to inspect and copy public records 21 and documents, including judicial records and documents.’” Kamakana v. City & Cty. of 22 Honolulu, 447 F.3d 1172, 1178 (9th Cir. 2006) (quoting Nixon v. Warner Commc’ns, Inc., 435 23 U.S. 589, 597 & n.7 (1978)). “[J]udicial records are public documents almost by definition, and 24 the public is entitled to access by default.” Id. at 1180. This “federal common law right of 25 access” to court documents generally extends to “all information filed with the court,” and 26 “creates a strong presumption in favor of access to judicial documents which can be overcome 27 only by showing sufficiently important countervailing interests.” Phillips ex. Rel. Estates of Byrd 28 v. Gen. Motors Corp., 307 F.3d 1206, 1212 (9th Cir. 2002) (citations and quotation marks 1 omitted). Two standards govern whether documents should be sealed: a “compelling reasons” 2 standard, which applies to dispositive motions, and a “good cause” standard, which applies to non3 dispositive discovery type motions. Kamakana, 447 F.3d at 1179-80; see also Pintos v. Pac. 4 Creditors Ass’n, 605 F.3d 665, 677-78 (9th Cir. 2010). The “good cause” standard, which is 5 applicable here, presents a lower burden for the party wishing to seal documents. Pintos, 605 F.3d 6 at 678. Courts determine whether good cause exists to protect the information from being 7 disclosed to the public by “balancing the needs for discovery against the need for confidentiality.” 8 Id. (quoting Phillips, 307 F.3d at 1213). 9 Plaintiff claims there is good cause to seal the portions of the training, Handbook, and 10 operative policies at issue because they contain “propriety and confidential information, and have 11 been designated as confidential pursuant to the Stipulated Protective Order as agreed to by the 12 Parties.” Doc. No. 33 at 2. Plaintiff identifies these documents as Exhibits A, E, F, G, and H to 13 the Declaration of Ryan A Crist. Id. Having considered the documents at issue and Defendants’ 14 lack of opposition to Plaintiff’s motion to seal, the Court concludes that Plaintiff has sufficiently 15 shown good cause for filing the documents under seal. 16 ORDER 17 Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that: 18 1. Plaintiff’s request to seal (Doc. No. 33-1) is HEREBY GRANTED; 19 2. Exhibits A, E, F, G, and H to the Declaration of Ryan A Crist, and the references thereto in 20 Plaintiff’s Memorandum of Points and Authorities in support of his Motion for Class 21 Certification, shall be filed and maintained under seal; and 22 3. Plaintiff will e-mail Exhibits A, E, F, G, and H to the Declaration of Ryan A Crist to: 23 for filing under seal. 24 25 IT IS SO ORDERED. 26 Dated: September 16, 2022 SENIOR DISTRICT JUDGE 27 28 2 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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