Robert A. Slovak vs Golf Course Villas Homeowners Association, et al

Filing 413

ORDER granting 383 Motion to Seal. Signed by Magistrate Judge Carla Baldwin on 12/3/2021. (Copies have been distributed pursuant to the NEF - DN)

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1 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 2 DISTRICT OF NEVADA 3 *** 4 ROBERT A. SLOVAK, 5 6 7 8 9 Plaintiff, Case No. 3:13-CV-0569-MMD-CLB ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO SEAL v. [ECF No. 383] GOLF COURSE VILLAS HOMEOWNERS’ ASSOCIATION, et al., Defendants. 10 Before the Court is Plaintiff Robert A. Slovak’s (“Slovak”), motion for leave to file 11 records under seal. (ECF No. 383.) The documents contain medical information and 12 records of Slovak, his counsel, and an expert witness. (Id.) 13 “The courts of this country recognize a general right to inspect and copy public 14 records and documents, including judicial records and documents.” Courthouse News 15 Serv. v. Planet, 947 F.3d 581, 591 (9th Cir. 2020) (quoting Courthouse News Serv. v. 16 Brown, 908 F.3d 1063, 1069 (7th Cir. 2018)). Certain documents are exceptions to this 17 right and are generally kept secret for policy reasons, including grand jury transcripts and 18 warrant materials in a pre-indictment investigation. United States v. Bus. of Custer 19 Battlefield Museum & Store Located at Interstate 90, Exit 514, S. of Billings, Mont., 658 20 F.3d 1188, 1192 (9th Cir. 2011) (quoting Kamakana v. City & Cnty. of Honolulu, 447 F.3d 21 1172, 1178 (9th Cir. 2006)). 22 If a party seeks to file a document under seal, there are two possible standards the 23 party must address: the compelling reasons standard or the good cause standard. See 24 Ctr. for Auto Safety v. Chrysler Grp., LLC, 809 F.3d 1092, 1096-97 (9th Cir. 2016). The 25 choice between the two standards depends on whether the documents proposed for 26 sealing accompany a motion that is “more than tangentially related” to the merits of the 27 case. Id. at 1099. If it is more than tangentially related, the compelling reasons standard 28 applies. If not, the good cause standard applies. Ctr. for Auto Safety, 809 F.3d at 1102. 1 Here, Slovak seeks to file documents under seal, which he claims contain 2 supplemental individually identifiable health information. His motion to seal and medical 3 records do not accompany a separate motion thus, they are not “more than tangentially 4 related” to the merits of the case. However, it appears Slovak is merely supplementing 5 the medical records he already filed under seal with the Court. (See ECF Nos. 340, 341.) 6 Further, the referenced documents contain the sensitive health information of three 7 individuals. (ECF No. 383.) 8 Balancing the need for the public’s access to information related to the medical 9 history, treatment, and condition of the three individuals mentioned, against the need to 10 maintain the confidentiality of the individual’s medical information, weighs in favor of 11 sealing these documents. For good cause appearing, the motion to seal, (ECF No. 383), 12 is GRANTED. 13 IT IS SO ORDERED. 14 December 3, 2021 DATED: _____________________ 15 16 ____________________________________ UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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