|Send this document to a colleague||Close This Window|
Opinion issued January 9, 2009
Court of Appeals
First District of Texas
CITY OF NAVASOTA, Appellants
NATIONSTAR MORTGAGE, LLC, f/k/a CENTEX HOME EQUITY COMPANY, Appellee
On Appeal from the 506th District Court
Grimes County, Texas
Trial Court Cause No. 31257
In this interlocutory appeal, appellant, the City of Navasota, appeals from the trial court's issuance of a temporary injunction in favor of appellee, Nationstar Mortgage, LLC. In its sole issue in this appeal, the City contends that the trial court erred by issuing a temporary injunction that was not supported by evidence, failed to set a date for a trial on the merits, and failed to fix an amount for security. We conclude the trial court erred by issuing a temporary injunction without setting a date for trial on the merits. We reverse the trial court's order and remand the cause.Background Nationstar holds a deed of trust on real property located within the City. The City ordered the owner of the property to repair, remove, or demolish the structure on the property. The owner did not comply, and the City decided to demolish the structure. Nationstar filed this action for a declaratory judgment and temporary injunction, seeking to delay the intended demolition and require the City to give Nationstar a "specific and itemized list of the required repairs as well as adequate time" to make the repairs.
The trial court issued a temporary restraining order and later the temporary injunction made the subject of this appeal. The temporary injunction ordered the City "to desist and refrain from directly or indirectly demolishing or attempting to demolish" the structure.
Validity of Temporary Injunction Within its sole issue, the City contends that the trial court erred by failing to set a date for the trial on the merits, rendering the temporary injunction void.
In pertinent part, rule 683 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure provides, "Every order granting a temporary injunction shall include an order setting the cause for trial on the merits with respect to the ultimate relief sought." Tex. R. Civ. P. 683. "The requirements of Rule 683 are mandatory and must be strictly followed." Interfirst Bank San Felipe v. Paz Constr. Co., 715 S.W.2d 640, 641 (Tex. 1986); see also Qwest Commc'ns Corp. v. AT & T Corp., 24 S.W.3d 334, 337 (Tex. 2000) (citing Interfirst, 715 S.W.2d at 641). A temporary injunction is void and should be dissolved when it does not include an order setting the matter for trial. Interfirst Bank, 715 S.W.2d at 640-41; see also Tex. Tech Univ. v. Finley, 223 S.W.3d 510, 515 (Tex. App.--Amarillo 2006, no pet.) (declaring temporary injunction void and dissolving it for failure to include setting for trial on merits); City of Sherman v. Eiras, 157 S.W.3d 931, 931 (Tex. App.--Dallas 2005, no pet.) (same); Kaufmann v. Morales, 93 S.W.3d 650, 656-57 (Tex. App.--Houston [14th Dist.] 2002, no pet.) (same).
Here, the temporary injunction does not include a date setting the cause for a trial on the merits. The temporary injunction is, therefore, void. See Qwest Commc'ns, 24 S.W.3d at 337; Interfirst, 715 S.W.2d at 640-41. Nationstar's sole response is that the City's challenge is not preserved for appeal because the City did not object to the trial court complaining of the lack of a date for a trial setting. However, because the trial court's failure to include in the injunction a date setting the case for a trial on the merits, the injunction was void, and "defects that render an injunction order void cannot be waived." AutoNation, Inc. v. Hatfield, 186 S.W.3d 576, 581 (Tex. App.--Houston [14th Dist.] 2005, no pet.).
Having determined the temporary injunction is void, we need not address the City's other challenges to the temporary injunction.
We sustain the City's sole issue.
We reverse the temporary court's order granting a temporary injunction and remand this cause.
Panel consists of Chief Justice Radack and Justices Alcala and Hanks.