Ex Parte Uppercu,
239 U.S. 435 (1915)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Ex Parte Uppercu, 239 U.S. 435 (1915)

Ex Parte Uppercu

No. 14, Original

Argued December 6, 1915

Decided December 20, 1915

239 U.S. 435


The right of a litigant to have material evidence from an existing object does not depend upon having an interest in it, or upon the right or want of right of the public to examine that object.

Although it may be perfectly proper for a judge to order evidence and documents in a litigation to be sealed, his order should be modified so as to admit any of the sealed matter to be produced as evidence at the instance of any litigant in whose behalf it is material.

The application of a litigant to have a document, which is material evidence in his cause, produced should not be rejected because the court in whose custody it is had made an order in a suit to which he was not a party that the testimony including the desired document be sealed subject to inspection only of the parties to that action.

Where a judge of a federal court refuses to allow documents which are included in evidence in a case in that court which has been ordered to be sealed to be produced for evidence, mandamus from this Court is the proper remedy to require him to make an order for the production of such document.

The facts, which involve the right of an interested party to have documents in the custody of the court produced as evidence, notwithstanding a previous order placing them under seal, are stated in the opinion.

Page 239 U. S. 438

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