Rao et al v. Apple Inc.

Filing 192

Order by Magistrate Judge Virginia K. DeMarchi granting 189 Administrative Motion to File Under Seal Joint Discovery Letter Brief re Clawback. (vkdlc1S, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 3/9/2020)

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1 2 3 4 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 5 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 6 SAN JOSE DIVISION 7 Case No. 18-cv-02813-EJD (VKD) 8 9 IN RE MACBOOK KEYBOARD LITIGATION 11 ORDER GRANTING ADMINISTRATIVE MOTION TO SEAL JOINT DISCOVERY LETTER RE CLAWBACK 12 Re: Dkt. No. 189 United States District Court Northern District of California 10 13 14 In connection with the parties’ joint discovery letter concerning defendant Apple, Inc’s 15 (“Apple”) request to claw back information revealed at a deposition that Apple contends is 16 protected under the attorney-client privilege (Dkt. No. 190), Apple filed an administrative motion 17 to file portions of the joint letter under seal. Dkt. No. 189. Having considered plaintiffs’ 18 submission, the Court grants the administrative motion, as set forth below. 19 There is a strong presumption in favor of access by the public to judicial records and 20 documents accompanying dispositive motions that can be overcome only by a showing of 21 “compelling reasons supported by specific factual findings.” Kamakana v. City & Cty. of 22 Honolulu, 447 F.3d 1172, 1178–79 (9th Cir. 2006) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). 23 However, the presumption does not apply equally to a motion addressing matters that are only 24 “tangentially related to the merits of a case.” Ctr. for Auto Safety v. Chrysler Grp., LLC, 809 F.3d 25 1092, 1101 (9th Cir. 2016), cert. denied sub nom. FCA U.S. LLC v. Ctr. for Auto Safety, 137 S. Ct. 26 38 (2016). A litigant seeking to seal documents or information in connection with such a motion 27 must meet the lower “good cause” standard of Rule 26(c) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. 28 Id. at 1098–99; Kamakana, 447 F.3d at 1179–80. 1 Apple’s motion to seal concerns information submitted in connection with a discovery 2 dispute. The underlying discovery dispute does not address the merits of the parties’ claims or 3 defenses, but rather whether defendants’ assertion of the attorney-client privilege is proper. The 4 material to be sealed is only tangentially related to the merits of the case. The Court therefore 5 applies the “good cause” standard of Rule 26(c). 6 The material proposed to be filed under seal is derived from a deposition that has been 7 designated “Highly Confidential – Attorneys’ Eyes Only.” Apple contends that the material 8 encompasses confidential business communications and that the communications are also 9 privileged, which the parties dispute. In these circumstances, the Court finds that good cause 10 exists to seal the following material: United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 Document Portions to be Sealed Pg. 1, 3rd and 4th and 7th to 9th lines of the Joint Discovery Letter Brief re Clawback (Dkt. third full paragraph No. 190) Pg. 2, header 2, 4th and 5th lines of the third full paragraph Pg. 3, header 3, 3rd and 4th lines of the second full paragraph Pg. 4, 5th to 7th lines of the first full paragraph, 1st and 2nd lines of the third full paragraph Pg. 5, 7th line of the third full paragraph Pg. 6, 3rd to 5th and 7th and 8th lines of the second full paragraph Ex. A Ex. B, 3rd sentence in the first full paragraph of Monday, November 18, 2019 10:00 AM email 22 23 24 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: March 9, 2020 25 26 VIRGINIA K. DEMARCHI United States Magistrate Judge 27 28 2

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