UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
November 2, 2011
B. ARONSON, INC., ET AL.,
BRADSHAW INTERNATIONAL, INC., ET AL., DEFENDANTS.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Suzanne H. Segal United States Magistrate Judge
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER RE: PARTIES' STIPULATED PROTECTIVE ORDER
The Court has received and considered the parties' "[Proposed] Stipulated Protective Order" (the "Protective Order"). The Court is unable to adopt the Protective Order as stipulated to by the parties for the following reasons:
First, a protective order must be narrowly tailored and cannot be overbroad. Therefore, the documents, information, items or materials that are subject to the protective order shall be described in a meaningful and specific fashion (for example, "personnel records," "medical records," or "financial information," etc.). Here, the parties define confidential information as "information which has not been made public and which concerns or relates to the Parties' business practices." (Protective Order at 2, ¶ 3). This definition could arguably include every item of information generated by either party, if they have not provided such information to the public. As such, the definition is overbroad. The parties may submit a revised stipulated protective order, but must correct this deficiency.
Second, the Protective Order does not establish the requisite good cause. Pintos v. Pac. Creditors Ass'n, 605 F.3d 665, 678 (9th Cir., as amended 2010) ("The relevant standard [for the entry of a protective order] is whether good cause exists to protect the information from being disclosed to the public by balancing the needs for discovery against the need for confidentiality." (internal quotation marks and alteration omitted)); Foltz v. State Farm Mut. Auto Ins. Co., 331 F.3d 1122, 1130 (9th Cir. 2003) (court's protective order analysis requires examination of good cause (citing Phillips v. Gen. Motors Corp., 307 F.3d 1206, 1210-11, 1212 (9th Cir. 2002)).
The Court may only enter a protective order upon a showing of good cause. Kamakana v. City and County of Honolulu, 447 F.3d 1172, 1176 (9th Cir. 2006) (stipulating to protective order insufficient to make particularized showing of good cause, as required by Rule 26(c)); Phillips, 307 F.3d at 1210-11 (Rule 26(c) requires a showing of good cause for a protective order); Makar-Wellbon v. Sony Electrics, Inc., 187 F.R.D. 576, 577 (E.D. Wis. 1999) (even stipulated protective orders require good cause showing).
In any revised stipulated protective order submitted to the Court, the parties must include a statement demonstrating good cause for entry of a protective order pertaining to the documents or information described in the order. The documents to be protected shall be specifically described and identified. The paragraph containing the statement of good cause should be preceded by the phrase: "GOOD CAUSE STATEMENT." The parties shall articulate, for each document or category of documents they seek to protect, the specific prejudice or harm that will result from the disclosure of those particular documents if no protective order is entered. Foltz, 331 F.3d at 1130.
Third, the Court reminds the parties that all future discovery documents filed with the Court shall include the following in the caption: "[Discovery Document: Referred to Magistrate Judge Suzanne H. Segal]."
Finally, the Court notes that its website contains additional guidance regarding protective orders. This information is available in Judge Segal's section of the link marked "Judges Procedures & Schedules." (See http://www.cacd.uscourts.gov/CACD/JudgeReq.nsf/2fb08 0863c88ab47882567c9007fa070/0141b1bcd8ee7f8488256bbb00542959?OpenDocu ment).
IT IS SO ORDERED.
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