Alani v. Alaska Airlines, Inc.

Filing 152

ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO FILE UNDER SEAL by Hon. William Alsup denying 126 Administrative Motion to File Under Seal.(whalc2, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 12/5/2011)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 8 9 ABDUL ALANI, 11 For the Northern District of California United States District Court 10 12 13 14 15 Plaintiff, v. ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT’S MOTION TO FILE UNDER SEAL ALASKA AIRLINES INC., CORPORATE DOES 1–20, and INDIVIDUAL DOES 21–40, inclusive, Defendants. / 16 17 No. C 10-02766 WHA Pursuant to Civil Local Rule 79-5(d), defendant Alaska Airlines has filed a motion for 18 leave to file under seal specified documents and/or portions of documents designated as 19 confidential by defendant. Rule 79-5(d) applies to documents designated as confidential by 20 another party. Here, defendant seeks an order sealing a document it designated as confidential. 21 Thus, Rule 79-5(a)–(c), (e) govern. 22 Defendant seeks leave to file the specified documents under seal in support of its reply to 23 the motion for summary judgment. The parties have agreed that the specified documents be filed 24 under seal for purposes of defendant’s reply to the motion for summary judgment. Under 25 Kamakana v. City and County of Honolulu, 447 F.3d 1172, 1178–79 (9th Cir. 2006), the court 26 held that a “strong presumption of access to judicial records applies fully to dispositive 27 pleadings” and “‘compelling reasons’ must be shown to seal judicial records attached to a 28 dispositive motion.” The burden of meeting the “compelling reasons” standard falls squarely on 1 the shoulders of the party “seeking to seal a judicial record.” Id. at 1179. Compelling reasons 2 must be shown regardless of any stipulation by the parties. 3 No compelling reason is shown. Defendant states in its motion for leave to file documents 4 under seal that pursuant to the Federal Aviation Administration’s Advisory Circular, records 5 submitted to the FAA for review pursuant to the voluntary disclosure reporting program are 6 protected from release to the public and should therefore be sealed (Br. 3). Because the specified 7 documents are such records the parties have agreed that they may be filed under seal. No 8 showing of “compelling reasons,” a substantially higher standard than “good cause,” is made. 9 Based on the foregoing reasons, the motion to seal is DENIED. This denial is without prejudice to the filing of a renewed motion to seal that squarely addresses the “compelling 11 For the Northern District of California United States District Court 10 reasons” standard set forth in Kamakana. Such a motion must be filed by TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12 6, 2011. 13 14 IT IS SO ORDERED. 15 16 Dated: December 5, 2011. WILLIAM ALSUP UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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