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The Divorce Encyclopedia
Injunction; Injunction Relief

Term Definition Injunction; Injunction Relief - a court order preventing someone from doing a particular act which is likely to cause physical, mental injury or property loss of another individual, which the courts then order as injunctive relief.
Application in Divorce In divorce actions, property-related injunctions, which, for example restrict the sale or transfer of property, are common. Injunctions are court orders that are often issued ex parte, which means without notice to the recipient, because notice would give the party the opportunity to evade the very purpose of the injunction.

Very frequently, one spouse, often he wife, asks court for interim restraint against property transfers when she fears that the husband may hide or dissipate marital assets.

Sometimes characterized as "preliminary injunctions," temporary restraining orders," or "stays," these court orders cannot be arbitrarily made because they are controlled by statute and generally require that the mover "demonstrate an imminent threat of irreparable harm.

The imminent threat of irreparable harm means the contemplated move of assets not only will damage the party but also that the motives for doing it are "improper."

As a safeguard against abuse, some jurisdictions require the moving party to post a bond to cover damages in the event of a wrongful injunction.

Temporary injunctions can be particularly important in cases where one spouse controls a business, manages substantial investments, and therefore is in advantageous position to hide or dissipate assets.

Such interim restraints may be problematic because injunctions freezing any transfer of marital assets "may be so restrictive that they actually diminish the marital estate." Some courts deal with this by limiting the scope of the injunction to transactions at less than full market value.

Injunctions which require certain actions are called affirmative, but most Injunctions are usually negatively defined, which means they prohibit certain activities. When the court issues an injunction, the action is said to be injunctive relief.

See also Restraining Order.

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