Spangler et al v. National College of Technical Instruction et al

Filing 154

ORDER Denying 100 Motion to File Documents Under Seal. Plaintiffs have not provided compelling reasons for filing the identified documents under seal. Accordingly, their motion is denied. Signed by Judge Dana M. Sabraw on 8/15/2017. (lrf) (sjt).

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 12 JUSTIN SPANGLER, individually and on behalf of all those similarly situated, et al., Plaintiffs, 13 14 15 16 17 Case No. 14-cv-3005 DMS (RBB) ORDER DENYING MOTION TO FILE DOCUMENTS UNDER SEAL v. NATIONAL COLLEGE OF TECHNICAL INSTRUCTION, et al., Defendants. 18 On September 2, 2016, Plaintiffs filed a motion for leave to file under seal 19 their reply brief in support of their motion for partial summary judgment along with 20 other documents supporting that reply brief. (See Docket No. 100.) 21 “Courts have long recognized ‘a general right to inspect and copy public 22 records and documents, including judicial records and documents.’” Rieckborn v. 23 Velti PLC, No. 13-cv-03889-WHO, 2014 WL 4964313, at *1 (N.D. Cal. Oct. 3, 24 2014) (quoting Nixon v. Warner Communications, Inc., 435 U.S. 589, 597 (1978)). 25 However, “[t]his right is not absolute. To balance the competing interests of the 26 public’s right of access against litigants’ need for confidentiality, a party seeking to 27 file under seal materials related to dispositive motions must provide ‘compelling 28 reasons’ to do so.” Id. (quoting Kamakana v. City & County of Honolulu, 447 F.3d –1– 14-cv-3005 DMS (RBB) 1 1172, 1178 (9th Cir. 2006)). Under this standard, “a party seeking to seal materials 2 must ‘articulate compelling reasons supported by specific factual findings,’ 3 providing the court with ‘articulable facts’ identifying the particular interests 4 favoring secrecy and showing how those interests outweigh the ‘strong presumption’ 5 favoring disclosure.” Id. (quoting Kamakana, 447 F.3d at 1178-81). “In general, 6 compelling reasons sufficient to justify sealing exist when the materials ‘might have 7 become a vehicle for improper purposes, such as ... to gratify private spite, promote 8 public scandal, ... or release trade secrets.’” Id. (quoting Kamakana, 447 F.3d at 9 1179). “‘The mere fact that the production of records may lead to a litigant’s 10 embarrassment, incrimination, or exposure to further litigation will not, without 11 more, compel the court to seal its records.’” Id. (quoting Kamakana, 447 F.3d at 12 1179). 13 Here, Plaintiffs have not provided compelling reasons for filing the identified 14 documents under seal. Accordingly, their motion is denied. The Clerk of Court 15 shall file the documents according to the regular filing procedure. 16 17 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: August 15, 2017 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 –2– 14-cv-3005 DMS (RBB)

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