Thank You For Submiting Feedback!
In addition to a likelihood of success on the merits, for a preliminary injunction to issue, a plaintiff must show they are likely to suffer irreparable harm in the absence of preliminary relief. Mere injuries, however substantial, in terms of money, time and energy necessarily expended in the absence of an injunction are not enough.
Richard Roe and Victor Voe are active-duty members of the Air Force. They were discharged when the Air Force determined that their chronic but managed illness—HIV—makes them unfit for military service. Roe and Voe sought a preliminary injunction to maintain the status quo while they challenged their discharges. The district court concluded Roe and Voe were likely to succeed on their claims that their discharges were arbitrary and capricious, in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act, and irrational, in violation of Roe and Voe's equal protection rights. The Government appealed.
Were Roe and Voe entitled to a preliminary injunction?
The court held that Roe and Voe were entitled to preliminary injunctive relief, because they were likely to succeed on their claims that their discharges were arbitrary and capricious, in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C.S. § 706(2)(A). The Government acted arbitrarily and capriciously either by cutting short the individualized determination required by regulation or by imposing an unjustified deployment policy at odds with modern science. The district court found that Roe and Voe would suffer irreparable harm, as they faced a discharge based on outmoded policies related to HIV that bore no relationship to their ability to perform their jobs.