District Judge Robert Sweet adopted, with a slight modification, defendants’ proposed one-tier approach to a protective order under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26(c) because plaintiffs did not demonstrate why their proposed two-tier approach was warranted. Plaintiffs proposed a two-tier system under which information designated “Confidential” could be accessed by up to two in-house people designated by a party and information designated “Highly Confidential – Attorneys’ Eyes Only” could only be accessed by outside counsel. In contrast, defendants proposed a one-tier system where documents designated “Confidential” were subject to the attorneys’ eyes only limitation. The court found that defendants could not demonstrate a need for its two-tier approach and adopted plaintiffs’ one-tier approach, but allowed plaintiffs’ counsel to “specify certain documents that it would like to discuss with its clients, to which Defendants may then object.” The court noted that this approach was “common during discovery” and directed the parties to confer regarding the appropriate wording of such an order.
Case: Focus Prods. Grp. Int’l, LLC v. Allure Home Creations Co., No. 13 Civ. 746 (RWS) (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 25, 2014)