A temporary restraining order (also known as a TRO) is a short-term court order issued by a judge which forbids a person from engaging with someone else. A TRO is a type of court injunction. Watch a video about court injunctions.
Temporary restraining orders are normally found in cases involving domestic violence, child abuse, divorce, harassment, and stalking. Temporary restraining orders are just as they sound: temporary. Generally, they are short-lived and only last a few days.
When a temporary restraining order is filed by a plaintiff, it can sometimes be discovered that the defendant suffered some sort of hardship or loss because of the TRO (such as lost wages or loss of family time, etc).
In order to prevent these losses from affecting the defendant, the court may sometimes order the plaintiff to file a Temporary Restraining Order Bond.
What is a Temporary Restraining Order Bond?
A Temporary Restraining Order Bond (also known as a TRO Bond) is a type of injunction bond that protects a defendant against loss in case the court decides that a temporary restraining order was unnecessary or should not have been granted.
A Temporary Restraining Order Bond guarantees that if the court fails to hold a hearing or decides the injunction should not have been granted, the plaintiff will pay any damages, taxable costs, and fees sustained by the defendant.
Courts will sometimes require plaintiffs to secure a Temporary Restraining Order Bond before they can be issued a temporary restraining order.
How to get a Temporary Restranining Order Bond
To get a Temporary Restraining Order Bond you will need to work with a surety bond company. Contact the surety company to apply for your bond.
TRO Bonds are more hazardous to write than other plaintiff bonds (with a hazard code 3 on a scale from 1-4), so the surety bond company will have heavy and thorough underwriting for your bond to assess your degree of risk.
The underwriting involved in issuing an injunction bond includes:
- The degree of risk: How hazardous is the obligation?
- Qualifying principal: Does the person getting the bond financially qualify for the risk?
- Case information: What are the circumstances behind the need for the bond? What is the TRO forbidding someone to do? What damages could result?
- Professional credentials/experience: Is the attorney in the case experience with proceedings of this type, size, and complexity?
Evaluation of these questions will determine if you can be bonded, and for how much.
Understanding the Approval Process
In order to get a TRO Bond, you will have to prove to a surety bond company—just like you would have with the court—that you need the temporary restraining order, and that no other method will be sufficient.
To prove this, you will most likely need documentation of your court order, the case specifics, personal financial statements, and a copy of the bond requirement from the court.
Additionally, sureties who have not previously done business with the plaintiff may require a bank letter of credit before agreeing to issue a bond.
Risk of Temporary Restraining Order Bonds
Temporary Restraining Order Bonds are riskier than other bonds. This is because TRO Bonds can be replaced by a subsequent Preliminary Injunction Bond. When this happens, the surety bond company who issued you the TRO Bond is now liable for both the TRO Bond and the new Preliminary Injunction Bond.
If the defendant suffers losses from the Preliminary Injunction Bond, often times the surety bond company is held liable for both bonds.
A Note on Surety Approval
Surety bond companies will often evaluate approving you for a TRO Bond with this in mind: if they cannot write both a TRO Bond and a Preliminary Injunction Bond for you, they will not approve you for the originally requested TRO Bond.
This is because writing one without the other can put an applicant in a difficult position, and threaten a surety bond company’s exposure should a claim be made on the bond. Sureties who have not previously done business with the plaintiff may require a bank letter of credit before agreeing to issue a bond.
If you work with a reliable surety bond company who can professionally walk you through the bonding process, getting a Temporary Restraining Order Bond can be possible. Having an expert on your side to assist you in determining the bond amount and processing your bond can be an indispensable part of your court process.