Al Jazeera America, LLC v. A.T. & T. Services, Inc., C.A. No. 8823-VCG (Del. Ch., Oct. 14, 2013)

Issue Presented:  Whether Delaware Court of Chancery Rule 5.1 allows sensitive competitive information in a contract dispute to be redacted in order to prevent the details of the dispute from public disclosure.

Short Overview of Decision:  This is one of several decisions in this case–and the first Chancery decision that provides a comprehensive analysis of Rule 5.1, in particular where both parties agreed to maintain a public filing under seal–but members of the press objected to preventing public access to the pleadings filed with the court. The court found that, with minor exceptions, neither party has shown “good cause” as defined in Rule 5.1, to maintain confidential treatment of the complaint, and therefore the court ordered that a largely unredacted copy of the complaint be made public.

This case involves a contractual dispute between Al Jazeera America, LLC and A.T. & T. Services, Inc.  A later Chancery ruling certified an interlocutory appeal of this case to the Supreme Court.