Goldstone v. Gracie Terrace Apartment Corp., Appellate Division, First Department Index No. 604235/2007

This case confirms that irreparable harm is a critical element of any application for injunctive relief. After suffering extensive damage to her co-op apartment, the co-op proposed repairs to the apartment that would have reduced the square footage of the 1,400 square foot apartment by approximately 50 square feet. The shareholder sought to preliminarily enjoin the co-op from making the repairs claiming that they would violate her proprietary lease.

The First Department, affirming Justice Debra James, held that even though the shareholder had established a likelihood of success on the merits, she was not entitled to a preliminary injunction because she could not establish irreparable harm.  At least some of the reductions in the shareholder’s square footage were required by certain aspects of the New York City Building Code.

The lesson of Goldstone is that irreparable harm continues to be a critical element of preliminary injunctions and parties seeking such relief must always be mindful of the need to show the irreparable harm element.