United States District Court, S.D. Texas, Houston Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
H. Miller Senior United States District Judge
before the court is intervenors Fab-Con, Inc.
(“Fab-Con”) and Signal Mutual Indemnity
Association, Ltd. (“Signal”) (collectively,
“Intervenors”) motion for a temporary restraining
order (“TRO”) and injunctive relief against
plaintiff Jermaine Hines (“Hines”). Dkt. 111.
After considering the motion, response, reply, evidentiary
record, and the applicable law, the court finds that
Intervenors' motion should be DENIED.
case involves injuries Hines alleges he incurred on August
26, 2016 while working aboard an oil rig in the Gulf of
Mexico owned by defendants Energy XXI Services, LLC and its
affiliates (collectively, “Energy XXI”). Dkt.
111-1. Hines was an employee of Fab-Con at the time. Dkt.
111-1. In connection with Hines's injuries and pursuant
to the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act
(“LHWCA”), Fab-Con and its group self-insurer,
Signal, paid compensation and medical benefits to and on
behalf of Hines allegedly equaling $225, 106.35. Dkt. 111-1.
sued Energy XXI, Industrial & Oilfield Services, Inc.
(“IOS”), Sirius Technologies, LLC
(“Sirius”), and Wood Group PSN
(“Wood”) (collectively, “Defendants”)
for damages arising from Defendants' alleged negligence.
Dkt. 1, 46, 62. Hines settled with Energy XXI and IOS, and
the court granted summary judgment in favor of Sirius and
Wood. Dkt. 99, 104, 105.
15, 2019, the court granted Intervenors' request to file
a complaint asserting a lien under the LHWCA against
Hines's recovery from this litigation, including any
settlement funds. Dkt. 108, 109. On July 19, 2019,
Intervenors moved for a TRO and injunctive relief preventing
Hines's counsel from dispersing any settlement funds to
Hines until their alleged lien is satisfied. Dkt. 111. In
support of their request, Intervenors assert that they
“may face irreparable harm, ” because
“nothing would prevent [Hines] from extinguishing those
funds, ” once dispersed. Dkt. 111-1. Hines filed his
response on August 2, 2019. Dkt. 114. Intervenors filed their
reply on August 9, 2019. Dkt. 115.
party seeking a TRO or a preliminary injunction pursuant to
Rule 65 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure must
demonstrate four elements: (1) a substantial likelihood of
success on the merits; (2) a substantial threat of
irreparable injury if the injunction is denied; (3) that the
threatened injury outweighs any prejudice the injunction
might cause the defendant; and (4) that the injunction will
not disserve the public interest. Bluefield Water
Ass'n, Inc. v. City of Starkville, Miss., 577 F.3d
250, 252-53 (5th Cir. 2009); Affiliated Prof'l Home
Health Care Agency v. Shalala, 164 F.3d 282, 285 (5th
Cir. 1999). Injunctive relief, particularly at the
preliminary stages of litigation, is an extraordinary remedy
that requires an unequivocal showing of the need for the
relief to issue. Valley v. Rapides Parish Sch. Bd.,
118 F.3d 1047, 1050 (5th Cir. 1997). Thus, injunctive relief
should only be granted where the movant has “clearly
carried the burden of persuasion.” Bluefield Water
Ass'n, 577 F.3d at 252-53; Anderson v.
Jackson, 556 F.3d 351, 360 (5th Cir. 2009).
general, a harm is irreparable where there is no adequate
remedy at law, such as monetary damages.” Janvey v.
Alguire, 647 F.3d 585, 599 (5th Cir. 2011). The
availability of monetary damages, however, “does not
always mean that the remedy at law is
‘adequate.'” Id. If the movant shows
that there are “‘extraordinary
circumstances'-such as evidence showing that the
defendant is likely to become insolvent before final judgment
or that the defendant intends to dissipate his assets to make
a judgment awarding damages uncollectible”-then a court
may find the harm irreparable. Hughes Network Sys., Inc.
v. InterDigital Commc'ns Corp., 17 F.3d 691, 695
(4th Cir. 1994); Amegy Bank Nat'l Assoc. v. Monarch
Flight II, LLC, No. H-11-3218, 2011 WL 6091807, at *6
(S.D. Tex. Dec. 7, 2011) (Rosenthal, J.) (relying on
Hughes Network and finding that the plaintiff in
that case had shown that the defendant would lack assets at
the end of litigation to satisfy a final judgment). It is the
movant's burden to demonstrate that irreparable injury is
likely should the court not grant the requested relief.
Winter v. Natural Res. Def. Council, 555 U.S. 7, 22,
129 S.Ct. 365 (2008). The court finds that Intervenors have
not carried their burden of persuasion that the alleged
injury is irreparable. Bluefield Water, 577 F.3d at
seek to prevent Hines's counsel from dispersing any
settlement funds to Hines until their alleged lien is
satisfied. See Dkt. 111-1. Intervenors assert that
failing to enjoin Hines's counsel will cause irreparable
harm, because Hines could dispose of the funds before
satisfying Intervenors' alleged lien. Intervenors,
however, fail to offer support for that assertion.
Id. They therefore have not satisfied their burden
of demonstrating that irreparable harm is likely if the court
does not provide equitable relief. Accordingly,
Intervenors' motion for a TRO and injunctive relief is
court finds that Intervenors have not met their burden of
persuasion. Therefore, the court DENIES Intervenors'