TOWNSEND v. MGT OF AMERICA INC et al
CONSENT ORDER GOVERNING CONFIDENTIAL MATERIALS AND DISCOVERY OF ELECTRONICALLY-STORED INFORMATION. Signed by JUDGE ROBERT L HINKLE on 2/8/2017. (kjw)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF FLORIDA
LEE HANK TOWNSEND, III,
MGT OF AMERICA, MGT )
FINANCIAL SERVICES, LLC,
CASE NUMBER: 4:16-cv-00298
Judge Robert L. Hinkle
CONSENT ORDER GOVERNING CONFIDENTIAL MATERIALS AND
DISCOVERY OF ELECTRONICALLY-STORED INFORMATION
The parties have stipulated and agreed to entry of this consent order, which
meets the Court’s approval. Therefore it is ORDERED as follows:
This Order shall extend to any documents designated as
"CONFIDENTIAL” according to the terms and provisions set out below. The Order
shall further extend to any document produced by any party, which document
contains trade secrets, proprietary information and/or is otherwise privileged. Any
such materials shall be designated as "CONFIDENTIAL" according to the
procedures set forth below by the party in possession of said materials before they
are disclosed, or retroactively, to any other party or individual permitted by this
Order as set forth below.
All confidential information in this case shall be kept confidential by
the parties and used solely for the purpose of investigating the claims and defenses
asserted in this matter and for no other purpose. In no event shall any confidential
information produced, generated, or disclosed in this case be used directly or
indirectly for commercial or competitive purposes, publicly disclosed, or used in any
other investigation or litigation, other than in conjunction with the investigation of
the claims and defenses asserted in this matter.
If any answer given or document produced in response to any discovery
in this case contains any confidential information, the responding party may mark
such information or document as "CONFIDENTIAL." Any information or
document so marked shall not be disclosed to any person except as may be permitted
by this Order. The designation of any information as "CONFIDENTIAL" shall be
made narrowly and in good faith.
This Protective Order shall not abrogate or diminish any contractual,
statutory or other legal obligation or right of any party or person with respect to
The aforesaid designation as to documents shall be made by placing a
rubber stamp impression, label or other mark of the word "CONFIDENTIAL" on
each page of the document and/or a cover page identifying a series of documents
which the designating party wishes to designate as confidential. All documents so
designated shall be labeled prior to the transmission of a physical copy thereof to the
receiving party, although such labeling may be done retroactively by reproducing
such documents with the designated "CONFIDENTIAL" label. Any and all financial
records received by virtue of responses to subpoena or by production requests
supplied by either party shall be assumed confidential and no designation as
"CONFIDENTIAL" is necessary for purposes of this order.
The parties may designate portions of deposition testimony as"
CONFIDENTIAL" by so designating such testimony before, during or after the
deposition. If testimony is designated as "CONFIDENTIAL," the designating party
will clearly state on the record the reason for such designation. Simply denominating
testimony as confidential is insufficient for purposes of this Order. The designation
of testimony as confidential will not render the entire deposition as confidential.
Only the specific portion of the testimony will receive a preliminary confidential
designation. If testimony is designated as confidential following the deposition, said
designation must be made no later than thirty (30) days after receipt of said
deposition transcripts. Within those 30 days, the proponent of confidential treatment
of all or any portion of the deposition shall serve on all counsel of record a
designation of confidentiality that identifies by page those pages to be marked, in a
manner which will not interfere with their legibility, with the word
“CONFIDENTIAL.” Any court reporter or videographer who transcribes or records
testimony in this action at a deposition shall agree, before transcribing or recording
any such testimony, that all "CONFIDENTIAL" testimony is and shall remain
confidential and shall not be disclosed except as provided in this Order; the copies
of any transcript, reporter's notes, or recording or other transcription records of any
such testimony shall be retained in absolute confidentiality and safekeeping by such
reporter, or delivered to attorneys of record, or filed under seal with the Court.
Subject to the provisions below, information and documents designated
as "CONFIDENTIAL" shall be disclosed only to the Court, the trier of fact, the
parties, their attorneys, witnesses or potential witnesses (including expert witnesses)
and persons assisting counsel. As used herein, the term "parties" includes the parties'
officers, directors and employees in a management capacity.
If any party or attorney for any party in this litigation desires to give,
show, make available or communicate any information or document designated
"CONFIDENTIAL" to any person, other than the Court, the trier of fact, a party, or
a party's counsel and staff, such as to any witness, potential witness and/or expert
witness, the attorney or party shall first give a copy of this Protective Order to such
person, who shall read this Protective Order, be fully familiar with its provisions,
and execute the attached affirmation.
Inadvertent production of any document or material without a
designation of "CONFIDENTIAL" will not be deemed to waive a party's claim as
to its confidential nature or estop the party from so designating the particular
document or material as confidential at a later date, as long as the producing party
or person, promptly after discovery of the inadvertent production without a
“CONFIDENTIAL” designation, notifies the other party or parties of the inadvertent
production. Disclosure of such document or material by any party prior to such
designation, however, shall not be deemed in violation of the provisions of this
Order. After a belated designation has been made, however, the relevant materials
or testimony shall be treated as confidential in accordance with this Order. A party
that inadvertently discloses confidential information shall give notice of an
inadvertent disclosure within 10 days after discovery of such inadvertent disclosure.
The Protective Order shall not, in itself, be construed to waive any
applicable privilege, work-product protection, or other protection or to affect the
ability of a party to seek relief for an inadvertent disclosure of material protected by
privilege, work-product protection, or other protection, as long as the producing
party or person, promptly after discovery of the inadvertent production, notifies the
other party or parties of the claim of privilege or other protection or immunity. A
party that inadvertently discloses material protected by privilege, work-product
protection or other protection shall give notice of the inadvertent disclosure within
10 days after discovery of such inadvertent disclosure. Upon such notice, the other
party or parties shall promptly destroy all copies of the documents or information
referred to and notify the producing party or person that it has done so. Such
destruction and notice shall not constitute an acknowledgment that the claimed
document or information is in fact privileged or entitled to protection or immunity.
With respect to any information or document, or portion thereof, which
has been designated "CONFIDENTIAL," any party may at any time serve a written
notice of objection to such designation. Counsel shall attempt to resolve the dispute
informally. If no agreement can be reached, counsel may move the Court for an
Order denying confidential treatment to the documents or information in question.
If such a motion is filed, the documents and/or information shall be kept confidential
pending a ruling on the motion. The party asserting confidentiality has the burden to
prove that the documents and/or information deserve such treatment.
"CONFIDENTIAL" with the Court, or any pleadings, motions, or other papers that
disclose any such information, counsel shall confer with counsel for the party that
produced the information so designated about how it should be filed. If the party that
produced the information so designated desires that the materials be filed under seal,
then the filing party shall file the materials with notice served upon the producing
party. The filing of the materials under seal shall not be binding on the Court,
however. Within ten (10) days of service of such notice, the party desiring that the
materials be maintained under seal shall file with the Court a Motion to Seal the
documents designated "CONFIDENTIAL."
After the termination of this litigation, the restrictions on
communications and disclosures provided for herein shall continue to be binding
upon the parties and upon all of the persons to whom documents, answers to
interrogatories, deposition transcripts or other items of discovery designated as
"CONFIDENTIAL" or material contained herein have been communicated or
disclosed pursuant to the provisions of this Protective Order or any other order of
the Court. Further, all documents designated as "CONFIDENTIAL," including all
copies which may have been disclosed to expert witnesses, shall be returned to the
party producing it or destroyed, with a written certificate of such destruction being
provided by counsel for the receiving party, within thirty (30) days of the disposition
of all claims and defenses in that litigation, whether by settlement, judgment or
This Protective Order is intended to provide a mechanism for the
handling of confidential documents and information. It is not intended by the parties
to act as a waiver of the right to object to any disclosure of information or production
of any documents they deem confidential on any grounds they may deem
appropriate, including, without limitation, confidentiality, relevance or privilege.
Nothing in this Protective Order shall preclude any of the parties from
otherwise seeking a modification of this Protective Order through motions made
before this Court.
At the conclusion of this litigation, the Court shall retain jurisdiction in
the case for enforcement of this Order.
This Order shall not prevent a party from applying to the Court for relief
therefrom, or from applying to the Court for further or additional protective orders,
or from agreeing to modifications of this Order, subject to the approval of the Court.
The Court may amend, modify or dissolve this Protective Order at any time.
SO ORDERED on February 8, 2017.
s/Robert L. Hinkle
United States District Judge
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