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State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. v. Elite Health Centers Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division

August 1, 2018

STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY, Plaintiff,
v.
ELITE HEALTH CENTERS, INC., ELITE CHIROPRACTIC, P.C., ELITE REHABILITATION, INC., MIDWEST MEDICAL ASSOCIATES, INC., PURE REHABILITATION, INC., DEREK L. BITTNER, D.C., P.C., MARK A. RADOM, DEREK LAWRENCE BITTNER, D.C., RYAN MATTHEW LUKOWSKI, D.C., MICHAEL P. DRAPLIN, D.C., NOEL H. UPFALL, D.O., MARK J. JUSKA, M.D., SUPERIOR DIAGNOSTICS, INC., CHINTAN DESAI, M.D., MICHAEL J. PALEY, M.D., DEARBORN CENTER FOR PHYSICAL THERAPY, L.L.C., MICHIGAN CENTER FOR PHYSICAL THERAPY, INC., and JAYSON ROSETT Defendants.

          SEAN F. COX JUDGE

          ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART STATE FARM MUTUAL'S MOTION TO MAINTAIN DOCUMENTS UNDER SEAL (DE 190) AND GRANTING DEFENDANT MARK RADOM'S MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER TO MAINTAIN DIVORCE DOCUMENTS UNDER SEAL (DE 227)

          ANTHONY P. PATTI UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court for consideration of Plaintiff State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company's (“State Farm Mutual”) motion to maintain documents under seal (DE 190), Defendant Mark Radom's motion for protective order to maintain divorce documents under seal (DE 227), and State Farm Mutual's response (DE 240). Judge Cox referred these motions to me for hearing and determination. (DEs 200, 258.)

         A. Background

         On or about May 15, 2018, Plaintiff State Farm Mutual filed several motions and exhibits under seal. (See, e.g., DEs 144, 146, 151, 153, 155, 158.) On June 1, 2018, the Court entered an Order addressing, in part, motions and exhibits filed under seal and directing the parties to review the submissions under seal to ensure compliance with Local Rule 5.3 and the parties' Stipulated Protective Order, and to withdraw and/or re-file any motion(s) or exhibit(s) as necessary. (DE 169.)

         On June 8, 2018, Plaintiff State Farm Mutual filed its motion to maintain documents under seal, seeking to maintain under seal: (1) unredacted versions of its previously filed motions to compel (DEs 144, 146 and 153) (the “Sealed Motions”); and (2) the following exhibits attached to the Sealed Motions and/or to State Farm Mutual's motion filed as DE 157 (the “Sealed Exhibits”):

. Mark Radom's interrogatory answers for his divorce proceedings (Exhibit L to DE 146; and also referred to in State Farm Mutual's motion to compel against Harriet Morse (DEs 143, 144));
. Noel Upfall's 2016 tax returns (Exhibit R to DE 146);
. Elite Entities' Profit and Loss Statements (Exhibit 15 to DE 153);
. Elite Entities' 2015 Tax Returns (Exhibit 16 to DE 153);
. Elite Health's responses to State Farm Mutual's second set of interrogatories (Exhibit 17 to DE 153);
. Mark Juska's responses to State Farm Mutual's first set of interrogatories (Exhibit 7 to DE 157);
. Noel Upfall's responses to State Farm Mutual's first set of interrogatories (Exhibit 8 to DE 157); and
. Ryan Lukowski's responses to State Farm Mutual's first set of interrogatories (Exhibit 9 to DE 157).

         State Farm Mutual explained that it filed the Sealed Motions and Sealed Exhibits under seal because each reflected or contained information that the producing parties had designated as “Confidential” pursuant to the Stipulated Protective Order agreed to in this matter.

         Pursuant to paragraph 10 the Stipulated Protective Order (DE 82), which addresses “declassification” of documents designated as “Confidential, ” State Farm Mutual challenged the Confidentiality designation of Mark Radom's interrogatory responses (Exhibit L to DE 146) on June 5, 2018. (DE 190 at 14.) Defendant Mark Radom filed a motion for protective order to maintain divorce documents under seal on June 27, 2018 (DE 227), and State Farm Mutual filed a response in opposition on July 11, 2018 (DE 240).

         On June 6, 2018, counsel for State Farm Mutual contacted counsel for Defendants requesting them to advise whether they would de-designate the following documents as Confidential under the Protective Order:

. Elite Health's responses to State Farm Mutual's second set of interrogatories (Exhibit 17 to DE 153);
. Mark Juska's responses to State Farm Mutual's first set of interrogatories (Exhibit 7 to DE 157);
. Noel Upfall's responses to State Farm Mutual's first set of interrogatories (Exhibit 8 to DE ...

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