Beyond Mandamus: Writ of Injunction Secures Relief from Trial Court Order Pending Appeal

In re David Mu
Dallas Court of Appeals, No. 05-21-00323 (October 12, 2021)
Justices Myers, Partida-Kipness, and Carlyle (Opinion, linked here)
The trial court issued a protective order requiring Mu to complete a Batterer’s Intervention and Prevention Program (BIPP) no later than 30 days before the first anniversary of the order. Mu appealed and asked the trial court to stay the BIPP requirement pending that appeal, arguing that it violated his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, because the course would require him to discuss his alleged bad acts before the statute of limitations had expired. The trial court denied Mu’s request to stay the BIPP requirement. So, Mu sought a writ of injunction against the BIPP requirement from the court of appeals.

An appeals court can grant writs of injunction only in limited circumstances, one being to prevent an appeal from becoming moot. Here, the Dallas Court of Appeals concluded that if Mu had to complete the BIPP course before the appeal was resolved, any relief on appeal could be ineffectual. Therefore, the court of appeals granted a writ of injunction enjoining the trial court from enforcing the BIPP requirement pending the appeal.
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