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Inc. v. NASW Assur. Servs., Inc.

United States District Court, D. Columbia.

June 24, 2013

AMERICAN PROFESSIONAL AGENCY, INC., Plaintiff,
v.
NASW ASSURANCE SERVICES, INC., et al., Defendants

          For AMERICAN PROFESSIONAL AGENCY, INC., Plaintiff, Counter Defendant: Harvey A. Levin, Kathleen E. Kraft, LEAD ATTORNEYS, THOMPSON COBURN, LLP, Washington, DC; Robert L. Folks, LEAD ATTORNEY, PRO HAC VICE, ROBERT L. FOLKS & ASSOCIATES, LLP, MELVILLE, NY.

         For NASW ASSURANCE SERVICES, INC., NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SOCIAL WORKERS, INC., Defendants, Counter Claimants: Robert Holt Myers, Jr., LEAD ATTORNEY, MORRIS, MANNING & MARTIN, LLP, Washington, DC; David A. Rabin, William Andrew McNeil, PRO HAC VICE, MORRIS, MANNING & MARTIN, LLP, Atlanta, GA.

         For PUBLIC CITIZEN, INC., Amicus: Allison Marcy Zieve, Julie A. Murray, LEAD ATTORNEYS, PUBLIC CITIZEN LITIGATION GROUP, Washington, DC.

Page 22

         MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

         Gladys Kessler, United States District Judge.

         Plaintiff American Professional Agency, Inc. (" Plaintiff" or " APA" ) brought this diversity action against NASW Assurance Services, Inc. and the National Association of Social Workers, Inc. (" Defendants" ) for breach of contract. Defendants filed a counterclaim against Plaintiff, alleging violation of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1051, et seq., and various common law torts. The parties have now reached a settlement agreement resolving all claims.

         This matter is presently before the Court on the Plaintiff's Motion Requesting Sealing of Consent Order and Judgment [Dkt. No. 38]. Upon consideration of the Motion, an amicus curiae brief,[1] the entire record herein, and for the reasons stated below, Plaintiff's Motion is denied.

         I. BACKGROUND

         On September 7, 2012, APA filed a publicly-available Complaint alleging that Defendants had breached a contract they had with APA whereby APA provided insurance services to Defendant National Association of Social Workers, Inc. (" NASA" ) and an NASA affiliate would promote and market the insurance program [Dkt. No. 1]. Compl. ¶ ¶ 2-5; 46-49.

Page 23

          On October 1, 2012, Defendants filed a publicly-available Answer and Counterclaim [Dkt. No. 4]. They alleged, among other things, that Plaintiff violated the Lanham Act's prohibition on unfair competition by using false, deceptive and misleading consumer advertising. Counterclaim ¶ ¶ 53-60.

         On November 19, 2012, APA amended its complaint to include Lanham Act claims [Dkt. No. 19]. Am. Compl. ¶ ¶ 100-108. On February 12, 2013, Defendants filed an Answer to the Amended Complaint and their First Amended Counterclaim [Dkt. No. 32].

         On April 11, 2013, the Parties filed a Joint Motion to Approve Consent Judgment [Dkt. No. 34] and a Joint Motion for Leave to File Document Under Seal [Dkt. No. 35]. They indicated that they had agreed upon the terms of a Consent Order, but that " resolution of the matters in this case depends in part on maintaining the confidentiality of the terms of the Consent Order and Judgment." Jt. Mot. for Leave to File Doc. Under Seal ¶ 5.

         On April 16, 2013, the Court denied the Motion without prejudice and ordered the Parties to file a motion to seal the Consent Order and Judgment that addressed the factors relevant to sealing under D.C. Circuit precedent. [Dkt. No. 37]. On May 7, 2013, APA filed the instant Motion Requesting Sealing of Consent Order and Judgment [Dkt. No. 38] (" Motion" ). Defendants neither joined nor opposed that Motion. On May 17, 2013, this Court appointed Public Citizen to submit an amicus curiae brief on the issue of the sealing of the Consent Order and Judgment [Dkt. No. 39]. On June 3, 2013, the amicus curiae brief was filed [Dkt No. 42].

         II. ...


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