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(a)    Presumption of Public Access.  There is a strong presumption of public access to the court's records.  This rule applies in all instances where a party seeks to overcome that presumption by filing a document under seal, thereby denying public access to that document. Alternatives to filing a document under seal are to be considered, including considering whether the document could be filed in a redacted version to address secrecy, privacy or confidentiality concerns while still providing the relevant information.  See Fed. R. Bankr. P. 9037.

(b)    Procedure for Motions to File Under Seal.  Local Bankruptcy Rule 9013-1 governs the filing of a motion seeking authority to file a document under seal. In some circumstances it may be appropriate for the motion to be filed ex parte per Local Bankruptcy Rule 9013-1(g), however, the court has discretion to set the matter for hearing.

          (1)    Electronic Filing.  An electronic filer who seeks to file a document under seal must file a motion.  The motion to file under seal must include a specific statement of the applicable legal standards and basis, with evidentiary support in the form of declarations where necessary.  A proposed order shall be uploaded through ECF.    

                  (A)    ECF Event. The designated ECF event for the motion to file under seal will permit documents to be filed under seal without prior court approval pending the court's ruling on the motion to seal.  The document(s) sought to be sealed shall be electronically docketed separately from but simultaneously with the motion to file under seal.

                  (B)    Sensitive Material in Motion to Seal.  In the rare circumstance that the motion to seal, or the opposition, reply, or declarations in support, if any, must be filed under seal, the filing party must still prepare and file a motion to file the pleading under seal, then file the motion, opposition, reply or declaration as a sealed document using a designated ECF event. Submissions on Paper.  Parties who are not ECF participants may submit a motion to file under seal and the documents sought to be filed under seal on paper, in accordance with Local Bankruptcy Rule 5005-2.

         (2)    Sealing an Exhibit within a Public Document.  If the document to be filed under seal is an exhibit to another document, an otherwise blank page should be inserted into the openly filed document reading "Exhibit __: FILED UNDER SEAL".  

                  (A)    Delivery to the Clerk. A document on paper sought to be sealed shall be presented to the Clerk in an envelope with the case caption, case number, and "SEALED DOCUMENT" clearly marked on the outside of the envelope.

                  (B)    Docketing a Submission on Paper.  The clerk of court, or his/her designee, will electronically docket the items submitted on paper as set forth in subsection (b)(1) above; the paper copies shall be shredded and destroyed unless the court orders otherwise.   

(c)    Denial of Motion to File Under Seal. If a motion to file under seal is denied, the document filed under seal will remain under seal and shall not be considered by the court for any purpose. If the filer subsequently wishes to have the document considered by the court, the document must be re-filed using a nonrestricted ECF docket event.

(d)    Access to Sealed Documents.  Except as provided under 11 U.S.C. §§107(c)(2) and (3) or otherwise ordered by the court, only the filer, members of the judicial chambers assigned to the particular case, and the court's Information Technology staff shall have access to the sealed document.  Any other party seeking disclosure of the sealed document must file and serve a motion pursuant to Local Bankruptcy Rule 9013-1 with notice to the party that requested the document be sealed.

(e)    Service.  A publicly viewable Notice of Electronic Filing (NEF) will be generated when a motion to file under seal, and related sealed document, are placed on the docket.  The motion will be viewable electronically through the Notice; however, the sealed document will not be viewable.  Service of the motion to seal and the sealed document, where appropriate, must be made in accordance with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedures, Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure and these Local Bankruptcy Rules., and be accompanied by a certificate of service

(f)    Documents Remain under Seal.  When the court grants a motion to seal a particular document, that document will remain under seal until further order of the Court.  

(g)   Procedure to Remove Protected Private Information from the Docket.  Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 9037(a) limits the private information that may be disclosed in an electronic filing or non-electronic paper filing and requires the redaction of certain information by the filing party.  If a document is filed which discloses protected private information, a party seeking to protect the private information on the publicly-accessed electronic docket may file a motion (See Local Bankruptcy Rule 9013-1) seeking to have the document redacted.  Upon receipt of such a motion, the clerk shall temporarily block public access to the document at issue pending the court's determination of the motion.  If the motion is granted, then within 7 days of the entry of the order granting the motion, the party who filed the original unredacted document will be responsible for filing a redacted version of the document.  When the new redacted document is filed, the clerk shall permanently block public access to the original unredacted version.