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U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Softpro, LLC

United States District Court, E.D. North Carolina, Western Division

May 28, 2019

SOFTPRO, LLC, Defendant. and MATTHEW ELLIOTT, Plaintiff-Intervenor

          EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISION LYNETTE A. BARNES Regional Attorney Charlotte District Office YLDA M. KOPKA Supervisory Trial Attorney Charlotte District Office HOLLY STILES (N.C Bar No. 38930) Trial Attorney Attorneys for Plaintiff

          Charles E. Monteith, Jr. (NC Bar No. 9368) MONTEITH LAW, PLLC Attorneys for Plaintiff-Intervenor

          KEVIN S. JOYNER ( N.C. Bar No. 25605) J. ALLEN THOMAS ( N.C. Bar No. 40119) OGLETREE, DEAKINS, NASH, SMOAK & STEWART, P.C. Attorneys for Defendant



         The parties move the Court for entry of this Consent Protective Order. This action arises out of alleged disability discrimination in employment requiring the production and use of employment records, medical files, and other confidential information. This Consent Protective Order is necessary to expedite the flow of discovery materials, facilitate the prompt resolution of discovery disputes and disputes concerning confidentiality, protect certain materials designated as confidential ("confidential materials"), and ensure that protection is afforded only to material so designated. For good cause shown, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:

         1. General Scope of the Agreement. This Consent Protective Order shall govern certain documents and other material produced in response to any discovery request or other request for information by Plaintiff, Plaintiff-Intervenor, and Defendant in this action, all information contained therein, and all copies, excerpts or summaries thereof, specifically . including, but not limited to, answers to requests for admissions, answers to interrogatories, responses to requests for production of documents and documents produced in accordance therewith, documents subpoenaed in connection with depositions and any deposition transcript or portion thereof as to which protection is sought in accordance with this Agreement. The following documents and/or information may be designated as "Confidential" pursuant to this Order: (a) medical records or other health-related information; (b) personal information about Defendant's employees, including but not limited to: social security numbers, tax information, personnel records, and health insurance information; and (c) confidential or proprietary business and personal information, including but not limited to, income tax returns, balance sheets, profit and loss statements, and business communications regarding Defendant's company operations, its customers, or its employees. The parties expressly agree that they may meet and confer regarding additional categories of Confidential information and treat such documents and information as Confidential without requiring modification of this Order by the Court.

         2. Designation as Confidential. Any party producing or furnishing information of any nature to another party, to the Court, or at a deposition in connection with this litigation, may designate as "Confidential," in accordance with the procedures set forth herein, any such information, document or part thereof, interrogatory answer, response to request for admissions, deposition testimony, excerpts and summaries of such information, or other materials as set forth in Paragraph 1 of this Agreement. Such designation shall be made at the time the information in produced or furnished, or at a later time as provided herein.

         3. Procedure for Designating Information as Confidential. Parties may designate confidential materials in the following manner:

(a) In the case of documents or other written materials, by affixing to each page of every such document, at the time of production, the word "Confidential" by stamp or other method which will make the word conspicuous;
(b) In the case of answers to interrogatories, designation shall be made by placing the word "Confidential" adjacent to or at the end of any answer deemed to contain confidential information. Alternately, answers deemed to contain confidential information may be bound separately and marked with the word "Confidential";
(c) In the case of depositions or other pretrial testimony in this action by the parties or any of their officers or employees, by a statement to that effect on the record by counsel for the party who claims that confidential material is about to be or has been disclosed. Unless the parties intend to designate all of the information contained within a particular document or deposition testimony as confidential material, counsel for that party should indicate in a clear fashion the portion of the document or testimony which is intended to be designated as confidential.;
(d) Within fourteen (14) days after receipt of the transcript of deposition or other pretrial testimony, a party or witness may designate portions of the transcript as "Confidential" and inform counsel of record in writing of such designation

         4. Restricted Use of Information.

         (a) Documents/information designated as "Confidential" pursuant to paragraphs 1 through 3 of this Order shall be used solely for the purposes of this action and shall not be ...

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