The opinion of the court was delivered by: LESLIE FOSCHIO, Magistrate Judge
This case was referred to the undersigned by Honorable John T.
Curtin on July 8, 2004 for resolution of all matters pertaining
to an attorney's fee application and charging lien filed in this
action and in a related action, Killeen, et al v. DiPizio,
03-CV-377. The matter is presently before the court on a motion
(Doc. No. 300) filed by Defendant New York State Department of
Labor ("DOL") on August 5, 2004 to unseal certain documents.
Specifically, DOL moves for a court order unsealing Doc. Nos.
179, 180, 181, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 192, 193 and
194, arguing that the sealing of such documents did not comply
with Local Rule of Civil Procedure for the Western District of
New York 5.4 ("Local Rule 5.4"). To date, no responses have been
filed despite the court's August 13, 2004 scheduling order (Doc.
No. 301), establishing August 31, 2004 as the deadline for
responses. Oral argument was deemed unnecessary.
Based on the following, the motion to unseal is GRANTED.
First, the subject documents were filed under seal despite a
lack of compliance with Local Rule 5.4 which provides that "there
is a presumption that Court documents are accessible to the
public and that a substantial showing is necessary to restrict
access." Local Rule 5.4(a). Specifically, a party seeking to file
a document under seal is required to
submit an application, under seal, setting forth the
reasons for sealing, together with a proposed order
for approval by the assigned Judge. The proposed
order shall include language in the "ORDERED"
paragraph stating the referenced document(s) to be
sealed. Upon approval of the sealing order by the
assigned Judge, the Clerk shall seal the document(s).
Local Rule 5.4(b).
Here, however, no application was submitted for any of the sealed
documents, nor was any reason for sealing the documents
Second, the motion is unopposed. As such, the parties who filed
the subject motions under seal have again failed to provide any
reason for restricting access to the information contained
Third, a review of the documents reveals they contain no
information that either is not already available through other
documents in the action that are not filed under seal, or that is
Finally, several of the sealed documents are either
certificates of service (Doc. Nos. 181, 186 and 194), or
transmittal letters from the filing attorney (Doc. No. 192).
There is no reason to seal such documents.
Accordingly, the motion to unseal (Doc. No. 300) is GRANTED.
The Clerk of the Court is directed to unseal Doc. Nos. 179, 180,
181, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 192, 193 and 194.
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