What are the Different Types of Injunctions?

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  • Written By: P.M. Willers
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 21 January 2020
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Injunctions are stipulations put in place by a court of law that either requires the halt of a specific action or act, or requires a certain act. There are several common types, which are generally classified by the requisite that is demanded or enforced and the speed at which it is required. They are decided judiciously, and depend on the facts of each specific situation or instance. If an injunction is violated, the violator can be held in contempt of court and will be punished accordingly. The most common types of injunctions are temporary, preventive, permanent, and mandatory.

A temporary injunction, also called a preliminary injunction, is used to provide immediate relief. This type of injunction can be invoked as a provisional remedy to preserve subject matter. It is often used to protect the rights of one of the involved parties. Temporary or preliminary injunctions do not decide the issues or merits of a case.

In the case of a plaintiff or party’s rights, a temporary injunction is not conclusive or deciding. If rights have been harmed, a preliminary injunction can halt progress to prevent further injustice. At the point of a temporary injunction, the court examines the present state and circumstances before continuing into an area that would obstruct the rights of the parties involved. The use of this injunction is generally considered to be appropriate only in extraordinary situations.


Preventive injunctions require that an individual refrain from performing a certain act. It can also be referred to as prohibitive, negative, or prohibitory. Prohibitory injunctions preserve the status quo and restrain a party from committing injury or wrong. These mandates cannot be used to address a completed act or indiscretion.

A mandatory injunction, like a temporary injunction, provides relief and can either prevent an injurious action or mandate or demand action. Normally, a mandatory injunction requires a positive act or performance of some kind. Courts are generally hesitant to mandate harsh acts, and mandatory injunctions are rarely granted.

Lastly, a permanent injunction, sometimes known as a perpetual injunction, is an injunction of final relief. They are granted at the time of the final court decision. A perpetual injunction remains so long as the conditions which were in place at the time remain constant. A permanent injunction is often ordered for cases involving ethical laws or standards.


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Temporary injunctions, often called orders of protection, in divorce cases are particularly troublesome at times. All a spouse has to do is file for one either when the divorce is filed or sometime before it is final and it will be granted. A hearing will be set to extend that injunction for a period of time.

Most of the time there is no process with that system. However, there are times when a vengeful spouse will file for one and the person on the receiving end of the temporary order of protection won't take it seriously and will miss the hearing. The order of protection, whether justified or not, can then be put in place for a certain amount

of time. If someone has an extended order of protection filed against them for no good reason, then that will be a black mark against them down the road when they seek employment, get into legal trouble, etc.

The moral of the story is that someone served with a temporary order of protection should contest it at a hearing to extend it whether they take it seriously or not.

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