In Errant Gene Therapeutics, LLC v. Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research, a protective order stated:
“Confidential and Attorneys’ Eyes Only information shall be used by the Receiving Party solely for the purposes of preparation for trial, pretrial proceedings, and trial of actions and proceedings in the above-captioned action and not for any business, commercial, regulatory, competitive, personal or any other action.”
In discovery Sloan-Kettering provided such information to plaintiff attorneys (Errant Gene Therapeutics or EGT).
A 1st sanctions motion against EGT stated that EGT improperly used these materials in Illinois against a different entity. EGT dismiss missed this case based on the protective order complaint.
A 2nd sanctions motion against EGT was filed. In this motion EGT was alleged to have used these ‘eyes only’ documents in other jurisdictions filing more lawsuits. The US District Court issued a sanctions order against EGT and its attorneys:
“IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:
1. EGT and its attorneys refrain from further misuse of the AEO and Confidential information obtained in this case pursuant to the Protective Order.
2. EGT pay SKI's reasonable attorneys' fees and costs of bringing these two motions for sanctions (Doc. Nos. 100 and 134.)
3. SKI submit hours and rates for the Court's approval on or before June 19, 2017.”
Many attorneys are surprised to find out that generally attorney’s fees and sanctions are not covered by Lawyers Professional Liability Insurance. Attorney’s fees can run in the tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars. Generally such court ordered restitution such as this comes directly out of the attorney’s pocket.