UPC CFI LD The Hague, 4 March 2024: "Attorneys'eyes only" restricted acces group for confidential information possible by agreement

14-03-2024 Print this page
IPPT20240304, UPC CFI, LD The Hague, Plant-e v Arkyne

Possible for the parties by mutual agreement to establish an “attorneys’ eyes only’’ restricted-access group for confidential information and exclude access by a natural person from each party, provided that fair trial is not affected. (Article 58 UPCA, Rule 262A RoP, Article 9 Trade Secret Directive). 

The wording of R.262A.1 and also Art. 58 UPCA seem to allow for a reading that, in addition to limiting access to specific persons, it is also possible in proceedings before the UPC to rule that access to ‘confidential information’ (which is defined broader than trade secrets: “trade secrets, personal data or other confidential information of a party”, Art. 58 UPCA) be prohibited completely. This follows from the use of the wording “restricted or prohibited or (…) restricted to specific persons” (emphasis added, JR). Considering the principles of fair trial, this could in some circumstances result in allowing access to a party’s counsel only. 


Principle of fair trail not likely to be impaired where the confidential information is a side issue (providing security for costs of a party, Rule 158 RoP). 


Confidential Information:non-public financial information concerning sales and investments is information that is generally considered to be confidential, especially vis-à-vis a competitor.


IPPT20240304, UPC CFI, LD The Hague, Plant-e v Arkyne