What Is an Injunction?

An injunction is a court order asking someone to do something or forbidding some act.  Common examples of injunctions include:

  • Prohibitions against creating nuisances
  • Preventing a factory from polluting a stream
  • Prohibiting the cutting of trees
  • Stopping a company from infringing upon a patent or copyright

What Are the Main Types of Injunctions?

The three main types of injunctions are:

What Is a Temporary Restraining Order?

A temporary restraining order (a.k.a. TRO) is a short-term injunction issued before a formal court hearing.  A TRO is issued when there is a danger that a delay in issuing an injunction will cause irreparable harm.  The common features associated with a TRO are:

  • It may be granted without a hearing
  • It is of limited duration, usually 10 days
  • It is issued at the beginning of litigation

What Is a Preliminary Injunction?

A preliminary injunction is a court order issued early in a lawsuit, prohibiting a party from doing that which is in dispute until there is a final court judgment.  The factors that affect whether a preliminary injunction is issued are:

  • The likelihood of success for the plaintiffs
  • The public interest must be considered
  • A balancing of the hardships in favor of the plaintiffs
  • Potential irreparable harm to the plaintiff unless the injunction is issued
  • The status quo must be maintained

What Is a Permanent Injunction?

A permanent injunction is a final court order that a party cease certain activities permanently or perform certain acts.  In order for a permanent injunction to be issued, the plaintiff must show evidence of an underlying harm.  Elements that must be proved by a plaintiff to earn a permanent injunction include:

  • That money or other legal damages are inadequate
  • That an important property interest is involved
  • That it is practical for the court to oversee that its decree is followed
  • That there is an evenhanded balancing of hardships in the eyes of the law
  • That no defenses are applicable to the situation at hand

Should I Consult an Attorney about My Injunction Issue?

If you seek an injunction, it is important that you hire a lawyer focusing on the particular area of law where your injunction would be relevant.  For example, if you wish to obtain an injunction against your neighbor for creating a noise nuisance, a property attorney can assist you with that injunction.  Experienced business attorneys can also help to nullify or modify an existing unfair injunction on record against you.