App. Div. 1st Dep't reverses grant of Yellowstone injunction which went to merits rather than preserve status quo.

Purpose of Yellowstone injunction is to preserve status quo, not to decide merits of dispute


Commercial landlord sought access through tenant's space in order to install an elevator shaft which it claimed was required for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA"). However, the notice sent to landlord from the New York City Department of Buildings directs the landlord only to verify that the space conforms to the ADA requirements. Landlord sent a notice to tenant to cure, which claimed that tenant breached the lease by refusing access. Tenant commenced an action against landlord, and sought a Yellowstone injunction. The court below granted the Yellowstone injunction directing the tenant to grant access to the landlord, and directed an abatement of rent until the end of the lease term. The Appellate Division held that the Yellowstone injunction exceeded the proper scope of interlocutory relief. The court held that the purpose of the Yellowstone injunction is to preserve the status quo, not to determine ultimate rights, but to maintain the status quo until a hearing on the merits can be held. The Yellowstone injunction was vacated and the matter remanded to the court below for further proceedings.

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Reference Info:Decision | State, 2nd Circuit, New York | United States

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