So now, Judge Bramlette has unsealed the deal, and we have a chance to see what’s in it. Is it really not a settlement at all, but about protecting the state’s investigation (as the AG’s media person suggested)? Was it under seal because there were grand jury proceedings in the case that could not be made public? Does what was under seal support Attorney General Hood’s suggestion that the investigation was “ongoing?”
The answer to each of these questions: It sure was a settlement. With specific and detailed terms. And what was under seal did not involve any grand jury proceedings and did not protect an ongoing investigation, because an ongoing investigation of State Farm would have brought Attorney General Hood right back in front of Judge Bramlette, who would have enforced the “unambiguous and enforceable” letter agreement.
Judge Bramlette’s ruling that the documents would come out subject to the attorney general demonstrating that a part should remain under seal certainly took the view that the case was settled:
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