United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana
SHER, GARNER, CAHILL, RICHTER, KLEIN, & HILBERT, L.L.C.
CONOR PACIFIC INC., ET AL.
ORDER AND REASONS
TRICHE MILAZZO UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is Plaintiff's Motion to Seal the Record (Doc.
September 13, 2018, Plaintiff filed a Joint Motion to Seal
the Record in this case. The next day, this Court denied the
Motion without prejudice because the Motion failed to comply
with this Court's Local Rules. Plaintiff subsequently filed
a new Motion to Seal the Record on September 18,
2018.The Court held a Telephone Status
Conference with the parties to discuss this matter on October
Local Rule 5.6(B), any motion to seal must be accompanied by
a proposed order and a non-confidential supporting memorandum
that includes: (1) a non-confidential description of what is
to be sealed; (2) a statement as to why sealing is necessary;
(3) reference to governing case law; and (4) a statement of
the period of time the party seeks to have the matter
maintained under seal. The Rule further provides that
“[t]he proposed order must recite the findings required
by governing case law to support the proposed
seeks to seal the entire record in this case indefinitely.
Plaintiff argues such a drastic measure is necessary because
“[c]ontained within the pleadings and exhibits are
documents” alleging that Plaintiff “breached the
standard of care” when serving as counsel for Defendant
Conor Pacific, Inc.The allegations, Plaintiff argues,
“are injurious to those involved and serve no purpose
in remaining in the public record.”
district court “may deny access to records if the
records become a vehicle for improper
purposes.” When deciding whether to seal judicial
proceedings, courts must “balance the public's
common law right of access against the interests favoring
nondisclosure.” There exists a presumption “in
favor of public access to judicial
records.” In the Fifth Circuit, the presumption is a
strong one. “[A] court must use caution in
exercising its discretion to place records under
the interests favoring nondisclosure are no different than
those presented by the vast majority of lawsuits filed before
this Court. Plaintiff argues that the entire record
should be sealed because some documents in
some pleadings contain allegations that attorneys
who either work for or used to work for Plaintiff committed
malpractice. By their very nature, the allegations are
exactly that-unsubstantiated allegations. If unsubstantiated
allegations in a few filings-in a case that ultimately
settled-were sufficient to justify sealing an entire record,
there would be nothing left of the public record in this
Court because defendants would routinely seek to seal entire
records. Such a situation would severely undermine the
purposes for public judicial proceedings, which include
promoting trustworthiness of the judicial process, curbing
judicial abuses, and educating the public about the judicial
Plaintiffs reasons for requesting that the entire record be
sealed in this matter fall far short of showing that the
records have become a vehicle for improper purposes.
Plaintiff fails to recite sufficient findings required by
governing case law to justify its request.
foregoing reasons, Plaintiffs Motion is DENIED
may re-file its request within 10 days by citing to
particular documents in the record it desires to have sealed
and by providing specific reasons, supported by governing
case law, to justify the sealing of those records.
See Doc. 60.