Miller v. Union County Public Schools et al
PROTECTIVE ORDER. Signed by Magistrate Judge David Keesler on 10/10/17. (mga)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF NORTH
CAROLINA CHARLOTTE DIVISION
CIVIL ACTION NO: 3:16-CV-666-FDW-DCK
UNION COUNTY BOARD
OF EDUCATION and JANICE BURNS, )
in her official and individual capacity,
Plaintiff and Defendants, pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 26(b) and 26(c),
anticipating in this case the disclosure to each other of personnel records and information,
student records and information, and medical and/or financial information in initial disclosures
and in response to discovery requests, and recognizing that the private and confidential nature of
such documents and information must be safeguarded pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. §§115C-319,
115C-320, 115C-321, 115C-325, 115C-402 and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy
Act (FERPA), 20 U.S.C. § 1232(g), consent to disclose said documents and information upon
the conditions set forth in this Protective Order, which conditions are consented to by the parties.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED:
That all documents and information relating to current or former students,
including Plaintiff, enrolled in the Union County Public Schools which are provided to any party
in the above-captioned case shall be covered by the terms of this Order. The Parties in possession
of such records shall comply with FERPA, which requires reasonable efforts to provide
notice so that parents or eligible students may seek protective action prior to such production.
That all records which are maintained by law or policy in the personnel files of
specific current and former employees of the Union County Board of Education which are
provided to any party in the above-captioned case shall be covered by the terms of this Order.
That all documents and information relating to Plaintiff’s medical and/or financial
records which are provided to any party in the above-captioned case shall be covered by the
terms of this Order.
That any party which provides documents subject to this Order shall label said
documents: “Confidential – Subject to Protective Order.” Each party retains the right to challenge
the confidential designation of any particular document and to have the Court determine its
proper designation. Notwithstanding the “confidential” designation, a party may redact certain
sensitive information within a particular document, such as social security numbers, dates of
birth, financial account information, etc. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 5.2. However, a party may not redact
any information regarding the name or identity of a potential witness, even if such witness is a
minor, or other legitimately discoverable information. The Protective Order's sealing provisions
shall be deemed sufficient to protect any such confidential information.
Parties seeking to file or maintain under seal any documents labeled
“Confidential” in accordance with the provisions of this Protective Order shall comply with the
provisions of LCvR 6.1 and the Administrative Procedures Governing Filing and Service by
Except as may be otherwise provided by further order of the Court, protected
information and documents designated as confidential (“confidential documents”), as well as the
matters contained therein and extracts and summaries thereof, shall be used for no other purpose
than prosecuting or defending this action and shall be disclosed only to the persons identified in
Except as provided in paragraph 8, access to or use of protected information or
any confidential documents, or any part thereof, as well as matters contained therein, shall be
The parties and their officers, employees, and agents who are providing
assistance to counsel in this action;
The attorneys of record for the parties, their associates, assistants,
employees, and agents who are providing assistance to counsel in this action;
Consultants and experts involved in the preparation of the trial of this
Court reporters, their transcribers, assistants, and employees;
Any deponent or trial witness to the extent that it is necessary to tender to
such witness a confidential document in order to elicit testimony relevant to the matters at issue
in this case; and
Members of the jury to the extent that it is necessary for the jury to inspect
a confidential document.
No one subject to this Order shall make public or disclose protected information
or confidential documents to anyone other than the persons listed in paragraph 7, provided that
nothing herein shall preclude a witness, attorney, or the Court from reading aloud or discussing
the contents of a confidential document in open court or at depositions. The terms of this Order
shall apply to all persons listed in paragraph 7, and counsel who grant any such person access to
protected information or confidential documents shall have an affirmative duty to furnish the
person with a copy of this Order. Individuals permitted access to protected information or
confidential documents are hereby ordered not to convey or otherwise reveal said information or
documents--whether originals or copies, in whole or in part--to anyone who would not otherwise
have access to them under this Order.
It is specifically agreed that making confidential materials or documents available
for inspection, and the production of confidential information, materials or documents shall not
constitute a waiver by the parties of any claim of confidentiality, and the production of such
information, materials or documents shall not be considered as an acknowledgment that the
information, materials or documents may be admissible into evidence at the trial of this action.
Nothing in this Protective Order shall require disclosure of material which the
conveying party contends is protected from disclosure by the attorney-client privilege, materials
produced in anticipation of litigation, or as constituting attorney work product materials.
This Protective Order shall not prevent any party from applying to the Court for
relief therefrom, or from applying to the Court for further or additional protective orders, or from
agreeing among themselves to modification of this Protective Order, subject to the approval of
At the conclusion of this litigation, copies of confidential documents will be
retained by counsel in accordance with the Rules of the North Carolina State Bar. Following the
required period of retention, counsel shall either destroy or return to opposing counsel all
confidential documents or copies of confidential documents that have been produced subject to
this Protective Order
Each party shall be responsible for its own mailing costs with regard to the
return of the documents provided pursuant to this agreement, or costs of destruction.
Signed: October 10, 2017
FERGUSON CHAMBERS & SUMTER, P.A.
Attorneys for Plaintiff
THARRINGTON SMITH, L.L.P.
/s/Deborah R. Stagner
Attorneys for Defendants
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