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Bornstein v. County of Monmouth

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

August 29, 2014

ISRAEL BORNSTEIN, as ADMINISTRATOR OF THE ESTATE OF AMIT BORNSTEIN AND ISRAEL BORNSTEIN, individually. Plaintiff,
v.
COUNTY OF MONMOUTH, et al., Defendants.

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

DOUGLAS E. ARPERT, Magistrate Judge.

This matter comes before the Court on a Motion by Defendants County of Monmouth, et als. (collectively, "Defendants") to seal certain materials [dkt. no. 121]; specifically, Exhibits H and I to Plaintiffs Certification in support of its Opposition to Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment [dkt. no. 86]. Plaintiff israel Bomstein ("Plaintiff'), along with intervening parties, CBS Broadcasting Inc. and American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey (collectively, "Intervenors"), have opposed this Motion [dkt nos. 123, 127, 144]. For the reasons specified below, Defendants' Motion to Seal is DENIED.

I. LEGAL STANDARDS

Local Civil Rule 5.3 governs requests to seal documents filed with the Court. Under Rule 5.3(c)(2), a party seeking to seal documents must show "(a) the nature of the materials or proceedings at issue; (b) the legitimate private or public interests which warrant the relief sought; (c) the clearly defined and serious injury that would result if the relief sought is not granted; and (d) why a less restrictive alternative to the relief sought is not available." L. Civ. R. 5.3(c).

Additionally, where a party moves to seal pretrial motions of a "nondiscovery nature" the moving party must make a showing sufficient to overcome a "presumptive right of public access." See Leucadia v. Applied Extrusion Technologies, Inc. , 998 F.2d 157, 164 (3d Cir.1993). To overcome this presumption, the moving party must demonstrate that "good cause" exists. Good cause exists when it "is demonstrated that disclosure will cause a clearly defined and serious injury." Glenmede Trust Co. v. Thompson , 56 F.3d 476, 483 (3d Cir. 1995) (citing Pansy v. Borough of Stroudsburg , 23 F.3d 772, 786 (3d Cir.1994)).

To provide further clarity, the Third Circuit has set forth the following additional factors to consider in determining whether "good cause" exists:

(1) Whether disclosure will violate any privacy interests;
(2) Whether the information is being sought for a legitimate purpose or for an Improper purpose;
(3) Whether disclosure of the information will cause a party embarrassment;
(4) Whether confidentiality is being sought over information important to public health and safety;
(5) Whether the sharing of information among litigants will promote fairness and efficiency;
(6) Whether a party benefitting from the order of confidentiality is a public entity or official; and
(7) Whether the case involves issues important to the public.

See Glenmede , 56 F.3d at 483 (citing Pansy , 23 F.3d at 787-91) and Archbrook Laguna LLC v. New Age Elecs., Inc., No. 08-1421, 2008 U.S. Dist. ...


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