United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Charlotte Division
RAYMOND BENITEZ, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, Plaintiff,
THE CHARLOTTE MECKLENBURG HOSPITAL AUTHORITY, d/b/a CAROLINAS HEALTHCARE SYSTEM, d/b/a ATRIUM HEALTH, Defendant.
C. Keesler United States Magistrate Judge.
MATTER IS BEFORE THE COURT on the
"Defendant's Motion To Seal Exhibits 1 And 5 To Its
Answer" (Document No. 18) filed April 30, 2018. This
motion has been referred to the undersigned Magistrate Judge
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b), and immediate review is
appropriate. Having carefully considered the motion and the
record, the undersigned will grant the motion.
pending motion, Defendant seeks to seal two exhibits to its
Answer..." (Document No. 16) filed on April 30, 2018.
See (Document Nos. 18 and 19). Exhibit 1 contains
medical billing records for treatment Plaintiff received from
Defendant and includes confidential medical information that
is protected by statute under the Health Insurance
Portability and Accountability Act of 1996
("HIPPA"). (Document No. 18, pp. 1-2). Exhibit 5 is
the Network Participation Agreement between the Hospital
Authority and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina from
2014 (the "BCBS-NC Agreement") and includes
confidential, commercially sensitive terms regarding
reimbursement rates for patients. Id. Defendant
notes that Plaintiff does not object to the sealing of
Exhibit 1, but was unable to take a position on Exhibit 5 at
the time the instant motion was filed. (Document No. 18, pp.
2-3). To date, there has been no response filed to the
pending motion to seal, by Plaintiff or any nonparty, and the
time to do so has lapsed. See Local Rule 7.1(e).
who seeks to seal any pleading must comply with Local Civil
Rule 6.1. The Local Civil Rule provides in relevant part as
6.1 SEALED FILINGS AND PUBLIC ACCESS.
(a) Scope of Rule.
To further openness in civil case proceedings, there is a
presumption under applicable common law and the First
Amendment that materials filed in this Court will be filed
unsealed. This Rule governs any party's request to seal,
or otherwise restrict public access to, any materials filed
with the Court or used in connection with judicial decision-
making. As used in this Rule, "materials" includes
pleadings and documents of any nature and in any medium or
(b) Filing under Seal.
No materials may be filed under seal except by Court order,
pursuant to a statute, or in accordance with a previously
entered Rule 26(e) protective order.
(c) Motion to Seal or Otherwise Restrict
Access. A party's request to file materials
under seal must be made by formal motion, separate from the
motion or other pleading sought to be sealed, pursuant to
LCvR 7.1. Such motion must be filed electronically under the
designation "Motion to Seal." The motion must set
(1) A non-confidential description of the material sought to
(2) A statement indicating why sealing is necessary and why
there are no alternatives to filing under seal;
(3) Unless permanent sealing is sought, a statement
indicating how long the party seeks to have the material
maintained under seal and how the matter is ...