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Bingham v. Supervalu, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Massachusetts

October 16, 2014

WARREN BINGHAM as EXECUTOR OF OF THE ESTATE OF MARION BINGHAM, Plaintiff,
v.
SUPERVALU, INC., Defendant.

ORDER

INDIRA TALWANI, District Judge.

This court hereby orders that Plaintiff's assented to Motion to Impound [#76] certain exhibits is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. The clerk is directed to return to Plaintiff the documents submitted to the court without first obtaining leave.

The court is guided in this regard by First Circuit precedent. Because the public has a "presumptive" right of access to judicial documents, [1] "only the most compelling reasons can justify non-disclosure of judicial records that come within the scope of the common-law right of access.'"[2] This presumptive right of access applies to materials that "come before the court in the course of an adjudicatory proceeding and which are relevant to the adjudication, "[3] such as materials filed by the parties in relation to a motion for summary judgment.

The burden is on the impoundment-seeking party to show that impoundment will not violate the public's presumptive right of access.[4] For that reason, when seeking to file materials under seal, a party must show this court good cause for the impoundment.[5] Specifically, the party seeking impoundment must make "a particular factual demonstration of potential harm, not... conclusory statements'"[6] as to why a document should be sealed.[7]

Here, the party seeking to maintain the confidentiality of the materials at issue shall file by October 23, 2014, a motion to impound explaining the basis for keeping the exhibits from the public. The other party shall file either its assent or its opposition to this motion.

IT IS SO ORDERED.


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