Title 16 Part 3 → Subpart E → §3.45
Title 16 → Chapter I → Subchapter A → Part 3 → Subpart E → §3.45
Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR
Title 16 Part 3 → Subpart E → §3.45
§3.45 In camera orders.
(a) Definition. Except as hereinafter provided, material made subject to an in camera order will be kept confidential and not placed on the public record of the proceeding in which it was submitted. Only respondents, their counsel, authorized Commission personnel, and court personnel concerned with judicial review may have access thereto, provided that the Administrative Law Judge, the Commission and reviewing courts may disclose such in camera material to the extent necessary for the proper disposition of the proceeding.
(b) In camera treatment of material. A party or third party may obtain in camera treatment for material, or portions thereof, offered into evidence only by motion to the Administrative Law Judge. Parties who seek to use material obtained from a third party subject to confidentiality restrictions must demonstrate that the third party has been given at least 10 days notice of the proposed use of such material. Each such motion must include an attachment containing a copy of each page of the document in question on which in camera or otherwise confidential excerpts appear. The Administrative Law Judge shall order that such material, whether admitted or rejected, be placed in camera only after finding that its public disclosure will likely result in a clearly defined, serious injury to the person, partnership, or corporation requesting in camera treatment or after finding that the material constitutes sensitive personal information. “Sensitive personal information” shall include, but shall not be limited to, an individual's Social Security number, taxpayer identification number, financial account number, credit card or debit card number, driver's license number, state-issued identification number, passport number, date of birth (other than year), and any sensitive health information identifiable by individual, such as an individual's medical records. For material other than sensitive personal information, a finding that public disclosure will likely result in a clearly defined, serious injury shall be based on the standard articulated in H.P. Hood & Sons, Inc., 58 F.T.C. 1184, 1188 (1961); see also Bristol-Myers Co., 90 F.T.C. 455, 456 (1977), which established a three-part test that was modified by General Foods Corp., 95 F.T.C. 352, 355 (1980). The party submitting material for which in camera treatment is sought must provide, for each piece of such evidence and affixed to such evidence, the name and address of any person who should be notified in the event that the Commission intends to disclose in camera information in a final decision. No material, or portion thereof, offered into evidence, whether admitted or rejected, may be withheld from the public record unless it falls within the scope of an order issued in accordance with this section, stating the date on which in camera treatment will expire, and including:
(1) A description of the material;
(2) A statement of the reasons for granting in camera treatment; and
(3) A statement of the reasons for the date on which in camera treatment will expire, except in the case of sensitive personal information, which shall be accorded permanent in camera treatment unless disclosure or an expiration date is required or provided by law. For in camera material other than sensitive personal information, an expiration date may not be omitted except in unusual circumstances, in which event the order shall state with specificity the reasons why the need for confidentiality of the material, or portion thereof at issue is not likely to decrease over time, and any other reasons why such material is entitled to in camera treatment for an indeterminate period. If an in camera order is silent as to duration, without explanation, then it will expire 3 years after its date of issuance. Material subject to an in camera order shall be segregated from the public record and filed in a sealed envelope, or other appropriate container, bearing the title, the docket number of the proceeding, the notation “In Camera Record under §3.45,” and the date on which in camera treatment expires. If the Administrative Law Judge has determined that in camera treatment should be granted for an indeterminate period, the notation should state that fact. Parties are not required to provide documents subject to in camera treatment, including documents obtained from third parties, to any individual or entity other than the Administrative Law Judge, counsel for other parties, and, during an appeal, the Commission or a federal court.
(c) Release of in camera material. In camera material constitutes part of the confidential records of the Commission and is subject to the provisions of §4.11 of this chapter.
(d) Briefs and other submissions referring to in camera or confidential information. Parties shall not disclose information that has been granted in camera status pursuant to §3.45(b) or is subject to confidentiality protections pursuant to a protective order in the public version of proposed findings, briefs, or other documents. This provision does not preclude references in such proposed findings, briefs, or other documents to in camera or other confidential information or general statements based on the content of such information.
(e) When in camera or confidential information is included in briefs and other submissions. If a party includes specific information that has been granted in camera status pursuant to paragraph (b) of this section or is subject to confidentiality protections pursuant to a protective order in any document filed in a proceeding under this part, the party shall file 2 versions of the document. A complete version shall be marked “In Camera” or “Subject to Protective Order,” as appropriate, on every page and shall be filed with the Secretary and served by the party on the other parties in accordance with the Commission's rules. Submitters of in camera or other confidential material should mark any such material in the complete versions of their submissions in a conspicuous matter, such as with highlighting or bracketing. References to in camera or confidential material must be supported by record citations to relevant evidentiary materials and associated Administrative Law Judge in camera or other confidentiality rulings to confirm that in camera or other confidential treatment is warranted for such material. In addition, the document must include an attachment containing a copy of each page of the document in question on which in camera or otherwise confidential excerpts appear, and providing the name and address of any person who should be notified of the Commission's intent to disclose in a final decision any of the in camera or otherwise confidential information in the document. Any time period within which these rules allow a party to respond to a document shall run from the date the party is served with the complete version of the document. An expurgated version of the document, marked “Public Record” on every page and omitting the in camera and confidential information and attachment that appear in the complete version, shall be filed with the Secretary within 5 days after the filing of the complete version, unless the Administrative Law Judge or the Commission directs otherwise, and shall be served by the party on the other parties in accordance with the rules in this part. The expurgated version shall indicate any omissions with brackets or ellipses, and its pagination and depiction of text on each page shall be identical to that of the in camera version.
(f) When in camera or confidential information is included in rulings or recommendations of the Administrative Law Judge. If the Administrative Law Judge includes in any ruling or recommendation information that has been granted in camera status pursuant to paragraph (b) of this section or is subject to confidentiality protections pursuant to a protective order, the Administrative Law Judge shall file 2 versions of the ruling or recommendation. A complete version shall be marked “In Camera” or “Subject to Protective Order,” as appropriate, on every page and shall be served upon the parties. The complete version will be placed in the in camera record of the proceeding. An expurgated version, to be filed within 5 days after the filing of the complete version, shall omit the in camera and confidential information that appears in the complete version, shall be marked “Public Record” on every page, shall be served upon the parties, and shall be included in the public record of the proceeding.
(g) Provisional in camera rulings. The Administrative Law Judge may make a provisional grant of in camera status to materials if the showing required in §3.45(b) cannot be made at the time the material is offered into evidence but the Administrative Law Judge determines that the interests of justice would be served by such a ruling. Within 20 days of such a provisional grant of in camera status, the party offering the evidence or an interested third party must present a motion to the Administrative Law Judge for a final ruling on whether in camera treatment of the material is appropriate pursuant to §3.45(b). If no such motion is filed, the Administrative Law Judge may either exclude the evidence, deny in camera status, or take such other action as is appropriate.
[74 FR 1832, Jan. 13, 2009, as amended at 76 FR 52253, Aug. 22, 2011; 80 FR 15162, Mar. 3, 2015]