King County v Travelers Indemnity Company et al

Filing 652

ORDER granting City of Seattle's 635 motion to intervene signed by Judge Barbara J. Rothstein.(RM)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON AT SEATTLE 7 8 9 KING COUNTY, 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 ) ) Plaintiff, ) ) v. ) ) ) PROVIDENCE WASHINGTON ) INSURANCE CO., et al., ) ) Defendants. ) ) ) ____________________________________) Civil Action No. 2:14-cv-01957-BJR ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO INTERVENE 17 18 Before the Court is the City of Seattle’s motion to intervene for the limited purpose of 19 responding to a discovery motion that the City anticipates will be filed by Defendant Employers 20 Insurance of Wausau (“Wausau”). Doc. 635. Specifically, the City requests that it be heard 21 regarding the potential production of documents assembled and/or created during a multi-year 22 23 alternative dispute resolution process known as the Duwamish Allocation. Id. The City is one of 44 parties participating in the Allocation. Id. at 1. According to the City, “nearly all the other 24 25 parties” share the City’s concern that the documents that will be sought are subject to the strict confidentiality requirements of the agreement that governs the Allocation. Id. at 2. Defendant 1 1 2 Wausau does not oppose the City’s motion, but filed a “clarification.” Doc. 644. According to Wausau’s clarification, its anticipated motion involves whether any privilege afforded by the 3 Allocation’s agreement has been waived. Id. 4 Company (“Providence”) opposes the City’s motion, arguing that the City does not have the 5 requisite significant protectable interest relating to the insurance policies at issue in this case. Doc. 6 Defendant Providence Washington Insurance 645. Additionally, or alternatively, Providence argues that any hypothetical interest of the City is 7 adequately protected by Plaintiff King County. Id. The City, in response, asserts that it has a 8 9 protectable interest in maintaining the confidentiality of the Allocation documents. Doc. 646. 10 Further, the City maintains, its interest is not protected by Plaintiff because if the Allocation fails, 11 Plaintiff’s insurers would have to “pay the costs for cost-contribution litigation,” while the City 12 has no such insurance, and therefore, will have to litigate at its own expense. Id. The Court agrees. 13 See Wilderness Soc. v. U.S. Forest Service, 630 F.3d 1173, 1179 (9th Cir. 2011) (“In evaluating 14 whether Rule 24(a)(2)’s requirements are met,” courts should “construe the Rule broadly in favor 15 of proposed intervenors…because a liberal policy in favor of intervention serves both efficient 16 17 resolution of issues and broadened access to the courts”) (internal quotations omitted). Thus, the 18 Court GRANTS the City’s motion [635]. The City shall be permitted to file a brief in opposition 19 to Defendant Wausau’s anticipated motion, as well as any motion subsequently brought by any 20 another Defendant concerning the confidentiality of the documents assembled during the 21 22 Allocation. SO ORDERED. Dated this 14th day of February, 2018. 23 24 25 BARBARA J. ROTHSTEIN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 2

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