Violating the preliminary injunction may have grave consequences, so it is important to understand what it is and how to comply.
When a Petition for Dissolution is filed in Arizona, a Preliminary Injunction always accompanies it. See A.R.S. 25-315. But what does this Preliminary Injunction do? A preliminary injunction essentially does several important things: (1) prevents the parties from selling or transferring any community property; (2) prevents the parties from harassing or harming each other; (3) prevents either party from removing any common children from Arizona; (4) prevents removing any party or child from insurance; and (5) prevents either party from canceling any insurance coverage.
Prevention of Selling or Transferring Community Property
Regarding the selling or transferring of community property, the preliminary injunction specifically prevents parties from "transferring, encumbering, concealing, selling or otherwise disposing of any of the joint, common or community property of the parties . . . without the written consent of the parties or the permission of the court." A.R.S. 25-315(A)(1)(a). This means that the parties cannot dispose of any joint or community property, unless the other party or court gives written permission to do so. And even then, the party selling the property will likely have to equally divide the profits from the sale with the non-selling party. There is an exception to this part of the preliminary injunction. A party is allowed to sell or transfer property if it is, "related to the usual course of business, the necessities of life, or court fees and reasonable attorney fees associated," with a divorce, legal separation, or annulment. You should absolutely consult an attorney before you sell property under this exception.
Prevention of Harassment Between the Parties, Removing Children, and Canceling Insurance
The second part of the statute, A.R.S. 25-315(A)(b)(i)-(iii), is self-explanatory: b) That both parties are [prevented] from: (i) Molesting, harassing, disturbing the peace of or committing an assault or battery on the person of the other party or any natural or adopted child of the parties. (ii) Removing any natural or adopted child of the parties then residing in Arizona from the jurisdiction of the court without the prior written consent of the parties or the permission of the court. (iii) Removing or causing to be removed the other party or the children of the parties from any existing insurance coverage, including medical, hospital, dental, automobile and disability insurance.
Prevention of Altering Insurance
Finally, the third part of the statue, A.R.S. 25-315(A)(c), is also self-explanatory, "That both parties shall maintain all insurance coverage in full force and effect."
The preliminary injunction is effective against both parties as soon as it is served. It is also important to remember that the preliminary injunction is a court order; so violating the preliminary injunction in any way is not advised. You should consult with an attorney to figure out what exactly you can and cannot do under the preliminary injunction.
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