Limits on Sealing in Trade Secret Cases
From Judge Beth Phillips’ opinion in Kyndryl, Inc. v. Cannady (W.D. Mo.):
In this suit, Plaintiff asserts Defendant misappropriated trade secrets, breached a contract, and converted Plaintiff’s property. The Court granted Plaintiff’s Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order, (“TRO”), which bars Defendant from disclosing certain information he obtained from Plaintiff, and the TRO remains in effect.
When it filed the suit, Plaintiff also filed a Motion to Seal Documents…. [While the motion has been pending,] Plaintiff had begun unilaterally filing [all] documents under seal….
Material filed with the Court is presumptively public, although that presumption can be overcome based on a specific need to protect specific information…. The Court agrees that any actual trade secrets should be kept from public view—but this is not what Plaintiff requests. Indeed, it does not contend any trade secrets have been filed. Instead, Plaintiff argues practically all documents in this case should be sealed because (1) they describe the nature of the trade secrets at issue, (2) they discuss (as required to establish the basis for Plaintiff’s lawsuit) that Defendant misappropriated the trade secrets and has threatened to disclose t
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