The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gregory G. Hollows U.S. Magistrate Judge
Assigned to Honorable Garland E. Burrell, Jr.
STIPULATED PROTECTIVE ORDER
TO THE COURT, ALL PARTIES AND THEIR RESPECTIVE COUNSEL OF RECORD:
IT IS HEREBY STIPULATED AND AGREED to, by and between the parties to this action, through their respective attorneys of record, HINES SMITH CARDER DINCEL BLAND for Defendant, Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company ("NMIC"), and GIFFORD & HARR, for Plaintiff Wanda A. Sell, individually and as Trustee of the Nancy A. Muhs Trust ("Plaintiff"), that certain documents produced in connection with discovery proceedings in this action shall be subject to the following confidentiality agreement ("the Agreement"):
1. The documents that are the subject of this Agreement include proprietary and confidential documents of NMIC containing trade secret or other confidential research, development or commercial information, and which NMIC contends are protected by trade secret privileges under Civil Code §3426 et seq. and Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26 and which NMIC is producing to Plaintiff pursuant to discovery procedures while the above-referenced action is pending and marked by NMIC as "CONFIDENTIAL" ("Confidential Documents"). Confidential Documents may be marked by NMIC as "CONFIDENTIAL" at any time, regardless of when produced. Further, stamping the legend "CONFIDENTIAL" on the cover of any multi-page document shall designate all pages of the documents as confidential, unless otherwise indicated by the producing party.
2. The Confidential Documents, and all copies or extracted therefrom, excerpts, summaries, compilations, testimony, conversations, presentations by parties or counsel to or in court, or in any other settings that might reveal said information, and information learned from the Confidential Documents, are confidential and proprietary in nature and protected by privacy rights and trade secret laws. It is the intent of the parties to preserve the confidentiality of the Confidential Documents and the information learned from it. The Confidential Documents and the information learned from them are not to be used in any fashion other than for the purposes of this litigation, and are not to be disclosed to any persons or entities except as set forth in the Agreement, and are to be kept confidential to the greatest extent possible, even within the confines of this litigation.
3. In the event NMIC marks any document or testimony "CONFIDENTIAL" which Plaintiff believes is not protected by any trade secret privilege or is not confidential or proprietary in nature, the parties shall within thirty (30) days of Plaintiff's request, meet and confer in good faith regarding removal of the "CONFIDENTIAL" designation. In the event the parties are unable to reach an agreement regarding designation of the documents as Confidential Documents subject to this Agreement or designation of testimony as subject to the restrictions of this Agreement, Plaintiff shall move the Court for an order de-designating the subject documents as "CONFIDENTIAL," and nothing within this Agreement or corresponding order shall preclude Plaintiff from making such motion. The burden of persuasion of any challenge proceeding shall be on the designating party. The parties agree to continue to afford the material confidential protection until the Court rules on any such motion.
4. The parties agree NMIC need not file a motion for protective order pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 26.
5. Immediately following the conclusion of this litigation, either by settlement, judgment, dismissal or otherwise, the Plaintiff's attorneys shall return to NMIC's counsel the Confidential Documents, including any copies they made of the Confidential Documents and including any extracts and/or summaries of the Confidential Documents containing information taken from the Confidential Documents. Plaintiff and Counsel for Plaintiff shall not discuss the Confidential Documents or information gleaned from the Confidential Documents at all with any party at any time after conclusion of the litigation, other than with their respective counsel and clients in the above-captioned action, counsel for NMIC, and the Court under seal.
6. The Confidential Documents shall be disclosed only to:
a. The Court and its officers in accordance with Paragraph 8 herein;
b. Counsel of Record for the parties and the staff assigned to assist Counsel of Record in this matter;
c. Any experts or consultants retained by any of the Parties; provided such expert or consultant ...