Protective Orders

Print Guideline

The Court encourages parties to propose agreed protective orders. Such orders may be requested by docketing a stipulation outlining the proposed terms and submitting a proposed order through the utilities function of CM/ECF. The Court then will review the terms proposed and enter an appropriate order. If either party is pro se, and that party is not an efiler, then the pro se's original wet signature must be on the stipulation. However, stipulations for protective orders may not contain language that authorizes in advance the filing of documents under seal. Filings under seal are governed by Local Rule 5.3, and the Court requires those procedures to be followed. Therefore, proposed stipulations for protective orders MUST contain the following language:

A. Filing Under Seal. This order does not authorize the filing of any documents under seal. Documents may be sealed only if authorized by statute, rule, or order of the Court. A party seeking to have filed under seal any paper or other matter in this case must file and serve a motion that sets forth: (a) the authority for sealing; (b) an identification and description of each item proposed for sealing; (c) the reason that sealing each item is necessary; (d) the reason that a means other than sealing is not available or unsatisfactory to preserve the interest advanced by the movant in support of the seal; and (e) a memorandum of legal authority supporting the seal. See E.D. Mich. LR 5.3; Shane Group, Inc. v. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, 825 F.3d 299 (6th Cir. 2016). With the exception of limited purpose filings allowed by Eastern District of Michigan Local Rule 5.3(b)(3)(A)(vi), no party shall file or otherwise tender to the Clerk any item proposed for sealing unless the Court has granted the motion required by this section. Whenever a motion to seal is filed, the movant shall submit a brief that states the particular reason the seal is required. If a motion to seal is granted, then the documents to be sealed may be separately electronically filed under seal.

B. Notice to Designating Party. Any party, other than the Designating Party, that anticipates filing any material that has been designated as Confidential Information must provide reasonable notice to the Designating Party of the proposed filing, so that the Designating Party will have ample time, if it so desires, to file a motion for leave to file the material in question under seal. The parties then shall meet and confer in connection with any anticipated motion for an order authorizing the filing of Confidential Information under seal, in a good faith attempt to reach an agreement regarding whether the Confidential Information should be filed under seal. See E.D. Mich. LR 7.1(a). If an agreement is reached, then the parties may file a joint motion for leave to file under seal, in conformance with paragraph A and Eastern District of Michigan Local Rule 5.3. If an agreement is not reached, then the Designating Party may file a motion in compliance with paragraph A and Local Rule 5.3. If the motion is denied, then the party separately may file the material, but not under seal.