Preliminary Injunction Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Preliminary Injunction, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Preliminary Injunction?

n An order passed by the court in the initial stages of proceedings to prevent the parties from getting into action where any controversy is involved so as to maintain situtaion as it is at present.

History and Meaning of Preliminary Injunction

A preliminary injunction is a legal order granted by the court that requires a party to do or refrain from doing a particular act before a final decision is made in the case. It is most commonly used in civil cases where the plaintiff seeks to prevent the defendant from continuing to engage in the behavior that has caused the dispute.

The purpose of a preliminary injunction is to maintain the status quo between the parties until a final determination can be made. It is often issued in situations where irreparable harm would occur if the behavior is allowed to continue without restraint. If the court finds that the party requesting the injunction is likely to prevail on the merits of the case, and that irreparable harm would occur without the injunction, it may be granted.

Examples of Preliminary Injunction

  1. A software company may seek a preliminary injunction to prevent a former employee from disclosing confidential information to a competitor.

  2. A homeowner's association may seek a preliminary injunction to prevent a neighbor from building a fence that encroaches on common property.

  3. A pharmaceutical company may seek a preliminary injunction to prevent a competitor from releasing a generic version of a patented drug.

Legal Terms Similar to Preliminary Injunction

  1. Temporary restraining order (TRO): A TRO is a short-term emergency order that is granted before a preliminary injunction hearing can be held.

  2. Permanent injunction: A permanent injunction is a final and binding court order that prohibits a party from engaging in a particular behavior.

  3. Restraining order: a restraining order refers to court orders that require someone to stay away from another person or to stop doing certain things.

  4. Cease and desist order: A cease and desist order is a legal order that requires a person or business to stop a particular activity immediately.