"Bronx Conservatory does not cite (and this Court has not found) any case, in this jurisdiction or elsewhere, in which an employer accused of sexual harassment has succeeded in sealing the pleading containing that accusation on any of the grounds asserted here."
Right of Access
"Bartolotti alleges that 'anytime you search [his] name on [the internet, he is] affiliated with this case,' which 'has affected [his] personal and professional lives [and] has become a safety issue at times as well.'"
Dentons US LLP sought to “initiate a civil case under seal by filing a petition to confirm an emergency arbitration award.”
A future Miranda warning for litigants? "I wish the SDNY pro se clinic had made me aware that many third-party commercial services download court documents ... and publish this information on the internet."
No, says a district court at first; yes, it says six days later. Always good to check the docket for follow-up orders, if you have the time.
Yet "[i]t is particularly troubling to the Court that [the lawyer] appears to have survived this motion more by dumb luck than any concerted effort on his part to comply with either his professional responsibilities or the orders of this Court."
But modest redactions are permissible.
“the public has a substantial interest in knowing about those disabilities so it can meaningfully oversee the Court’s exercise of its judicial power.”
The lawsuit stems from an alleged sexual relationship between the plaintiff and Spacey over 35 years ago, when the plaintiff was 14.
Unsurprisingly, the court also refuses to order private caselaw repositories and search engines to hide the information.
So holds the Florida Court of Appeal, interpreting the Florida Constitution's crime victims' rights provision. ("If a prosecutor determines that the officer was not a victim and instead charges the officer for his conduct," the names would be released, but no such determination was made here.)
"This is beyond the pale. The indiscriminate use of the confidentiality stamp alone warrants the denial of the entirety of the motions."
but with "blurring images of [Susan] Muller's body and blood spatter."
"Public access [to judicial records] serves to promote trustworthiness of the judicial process, to curb judicial abuses, and to provide the public with a more complete understanding of the judicial system, including a better perception of its fairness."
Plaintiff "Must Have Known That the Embarrassing Events During His Previous Employment Would Be Central to … the Case"
Court records are generally public records, embarrassing as they might be for the parties.
"The public has every right to understand how the public and elected officials of the Town of Wilton and the Wilton Public Schools in the exercise of their best judgment sought to resolve this case."
“But increasingly, courts are sealing documents in run-of-the-mill cases where the parties simply prefer to keep things under wraps.”
May plaintiffs alleged sexual assault proceed pseudonymously, when the defendant is being publicly named?
"[O]nce a matter is brought before a court for resolution, it is no longer solely the parties' case, but also the public's case."
"It is simply not reasonable for a plaintiff to bring a case alleging that his constitutional rights were violated by state officials and not expect the facts on which those officials based their actions to be included in the public record of a case."
Plus a special appearance by The Princess Bride and Weekend at Bernie's.
Public Has Right "to See What Is Going Into the Sausage Factory [of Litigation], Even if a Particular Sausage Is Never Made"
Federal court holds that documents accompanying motions are presumptively accessible even if the case settles before the court decides the motion.
"These allegations stand at the heart of plaintiffs' claims, and sealing them would make this litigation virtually incomprehensible to the public."
The judge had earlier ordered search engines and web sites to remove materials about a employment discrimination lawsuit.
A judge rightly speaks out against them.
"unsubstantiated allegations" that are "irrelevant ... and therefore inadmissible" can be redacted from the public version of the filings.
Defendant "Wants to Go to a New Employer and Not Disclose the Serious Allegations Raised Against Him [in a Suit by His Ex-Employer]"
"This Court cannot be a party ... to such a deception." So holds a federal Magistrate Judge in rejecting the parties' joint motion to seal the complaint in the case, after it had been settled.
So says the Delaware Court of Chancery: "If the information currently redacted remains so, the public will have no means to understand the dispute MetTel has asked the Court to adjudicate."
"Plaintiffs decided to file a publicly available case and then ask the Court to protect them because defendant might say horrible things about them throughout the course of this litigation.... But harsh words are not a basis to seal a case, especially where it appears that both sides have no qualms about tearing each other down."
So holds a Minnesota trial court, because ordinary public access is precluded as a result of the epidemic.