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Kymberly Wilborn and Erik Schmidt, Individually and On Behalf of All v. Greystar Real Estate Partners

April 4, 2013


The opinion of the court was delivered by: The Honorable Michael R. Wilner United States Magistrate Judge


[Lodged in Chambers]

Magistrate: Hon. Michael R. Wilner Courtroom: H Assigned to: Hon. John F. Walter (Ctrm. 16) Trial Date: November 19, 2013 Action Filed: September 18, 2012

Pursuant to the Parties' Stipulation re Entry of Protective Order, and good cause appearing therefore, it is hereby ORDERED that all Parties to this action and their counsel comply with the following protective order:


By virtue of the fact that Plaintiffs KYMBERLY WILBORN and ERIK SCHMIDT's (hereinafter "Plaintiffs") claims against Defendant GREYSTAR CALIFORNIA, INC. (hereinafter "Greystar") involve potentially private and confidential information regarding the names, telephone numbers and potential conversations with Greystar's current and former tenants (who may or may not be part of the putative class) and third parties to this action, the information in this action is likely to involve the production of confidential or private information for which special protection from public disclosure and from use for any purpose other than prosecuting and defending this litigation may be warranted. Accordingly, the Parties hereby stipulate to and petition the Court to enter the following Stipulated Protective Order.

The Parties acknowledge that this Order does not confer blanket protections on all disclosures or responses to discovery and that the protection it affords from public disclosure and use extends only to the limited information or items that are entitled to confidential treatment under applicable legal principles. The Parties further acknowledge, as set for in Section 11.4 below, that this Stipulated Protective Order does not, standing alone, entitle them to file confidential information under seal; rather, Civil Local Rule 79-5 sets forth the procedures that must be followed and the standards that will be applied when a party seeks permission from the Court to file material under seal.

The Parties' stipulation regarding this Protective Order cannot be construed as a waiver of any of their substantive or procedural rights in this case.


2.1 Challenging Party: a Party or Non-Party that challenges the designation of information or items under this Order.

2.2 "Confidential" Information or Items: information (regardless of how generated, stored or maintained), or tangible items not generally publicly available and provide some value to the designating party by virtue of the fact the information is not generally known, or that qualify for protection under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26(c) and related case law. "Confidential" Information also includes names, telephone numbers, addresses, and recordings or transcriptions of recordings of telephone conversations or communications between Plaintiffs, putative class members, witnesses, or third parties and Defendant and/or third parties.

2.3 Counsel (Without Qualifier): Outside Counsel of Record and their support staff.

2.4 Designating Party: a Party or Non-Party that designates information or items that it produces in disclosures or in responses to discovery as "CONFIDENTIAL" or "HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL -- ATTORNEYS' EYES ONLY."

2.5 Disclosure or Discovery Material: all items or information, regardless of medium or manner in which it is generated, stored or maintained (including but not limited to testimony, transcripts, and other tangible things), that are produced or generated in disclosures or responses to discovery in this matter.

2.6 Expert: a person with specialized knowledge or experience in a matter pertinent to the litigation who (1) has been retained by a Party or its counsel to serve as an expert witness or as a consultant in this action; and (2) is not a member or potential member of Plaintiffs' putative class. This definition includes, but is not limited to, a professional jury or trial consultant retained in connection with this litigation.

2.7 "HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL -- ATTORNEYS' EYES ONLY" Information or Items: extremely sensitive "Confidential Information or Items," disclosure of which to another Party or Non-Party would create a substantial risk of serious harm that could not be avoided by less restrictive means.

2.8 Non-Party: any natural person, partnership, corporation, association, or other legally recognized entity not named as a party to this action, including, but not limited to, any putative class members unless and until class certification has been sought and class certification approved and an order issued thereon identifying the specific class members.

2.9 Outside Counsel of Record: attorneys who are not employed by the Parties to this action, but are retained to represent or advise the Parties and have appeared in this action on behalf of that party or are affiliated with a law firm which has appeared on behalf of that party.

2.10 Party: any party to this action, including all of its officers, directors, employees, consultants, retained experts, and Outside Counsel of Record (including their support staffs).

2.11 Producing Party: a Party or Non-Party that produces Disclosure or Discovery Material in this action.

2.12 Professional Vendors: persons or entities that provide litigation support services (e.g., photocopying, data processing, videotaping, translating, preparing exhibits or demonstrations, organizing, storing, reviewing or retrieving data in any form or medium, etc.) and their employees and subcontractors.

2.13 Protected Material: any Disclosure or Discovery Material that is designated as "CONFIDENTIAL," or as "HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL -- ATTORNEYS' EYES ONLY."

2.14 Receiving Party: a Party that receives Disclosure or Discovery Material from a Producing Party.


The protections conferred by this Stipulation and Order cover not only Protected Material (as defined above), but also (1) any information copied or extracted from Protected Material; (2) all copies, excerpts, summaries, or compilations of Protected Material; and (3) any testimony, conversations, or presentations by Parties or their Counsel that might reveal Protected Material. However, the protections conferred by this Stipulation and Order do not cover the following information: (a) any information that is in the public domain at the time of disclosure to a Receiving Party or becomes part of the public domain after its disclosure to a Receiving Party as a result of publication not involving a violation of this Order, or otherwise; and (b) any information known to the Receiving Party prior to the disclosure obtained by the Receiving Party after the disclosure from a source who obtained the information lawfully and under no obligation of confidentiality to the Designating Party. Any use of Protected Material at trial shall be governed by a separate agreement or order.


Even after final disposition of this litigation, the confidentiality obligations imposed by this Order shall remain in effect until a Designating Party agrees otherwise in writing or a court order otherwise directs. Final disposition shall be deemed to be the later of (1) dismissal of all claims and defense in this action, with or without prejudice; and (2) final judgment herein after the completion and exhaustion of all appeals, rehearings, remands, trials, or reviews of this action, including time limits for filing any motions or applications for extension of time pursuant to applicable law.


5.1 Exercise of Restraint and Care in Designating Material for Protection.

Each Party or Non-Party that designates information or items for protection under this Order must take care to limit any such designation to specific material that qualifies under the appropriate standards. To the extent it is practical to do so, the Designating Party must designate for protection only those parts of material, documents, items, and/or oral or written communications that qualify -- so that other portions of the material, documents, items, and/or communications for which protection is not warranted are not swept unjustifiably within the ambit of this Order.

Mass, indiscriminate, or routinized designations are prohibited. Designations that are shown to be clearly unjustified or that have been made for an improper purpose (e.g., to unnecessarily encumber or retard the case development process or to impose unnecessary expenses and burdens on other Parties), expose the Designating Party to sanctions.

If it comes to a Designating Party's attention that information or items that it designated for protection do not qualify for protection at all, or do not qualify for the level of protection initially asserted, that Designating Party must promptly notify all other Parties that it is withdrawing the mistaken designation.

5.2 Manner and Timing of Designations. Except as otherwise provided in this Order (see, e.g., second paragraph of Section 5.2(a), below), or as otherwise stipulated or ordered, Disclosure or Discovery Material that qualifies for protection under this Order must be clearly so designated before the material is disclosed or produced.

Designation in conformity with this Order requires: (a) for information in documentary form (e.g., paper or electronic documents, but excluding transcripts of depositions or other pretrial or trial proceedings), that the Producing Party affix the legend "CONFIDENTIAL" or "HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL -- ATTORNEYS' EYES ONLY" to each page that contains Protected Material. If only a portion or portions of the material on a page qualifies for protection, the Producing Party also must clearly identify the protected portions(s) (e.g., by making appropriate markings in the margins) and must specify, for each portion, the level of protection being asserted (either "CONFIDENTIAL" or "HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL -- ATTORNEYS' EYES ONLY").

A Party or Non-Party that makes original documents or materials available for inspection need not designate them for protection until after the Inspecting Party has indicated which material it would like copied and produced. During the inspection and before the designation, all of the material made available for inspection shall be deemed "HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL -- ATTORNEYS' EYES ONLY." After the Inspecting Party has identified the documents it wants copied and produced, the Producing Party must determine which documents, or portions thereof, qualify for protection under this Order. Then, before producing the specified documents, the Producing Party must affix the appropriate legend ("CONFIDENTIAL" or "HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL -- ATTORNEYS' EYES ONLY") to each page that contains Protected Material. If only a portion or portions of the material on a page qualifies for protection, the Producing Party also must clearly ...

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