Equitable Remedies – mon-monetary forms of (Injunctive) Relief to help remedy the situation:

     There are several pre-constructed Civil Complaint forms on UScourts.gov which may be used for the purpose of commencing a civil action.  Each of them state the following under the category entitled “Relief”:

     “State briefly and precisely what damages or other relief the plaintiff asks the court to order….

n. (14c)

1. Relief; remedy.

2. A means of seeking relief or remedy <if the statute of limitations has run, the plaintiff is without redress>. — redressable, adj. — redress, vb.” [1]

n.. (13c)

1. The means of enforcing a right or preventing or redressing a wrong; legal or equitable relief. — aka civil remedy.  


3. A right by which an aggrieved party may seek relief without resort to a tribunal. — aka (in senses 1 & 2) law of remedy. — remedy, vb.”


3. The redress or benefit, especially equitable in nature (such as an injunction or specific performance), that a party asks of a court. — aka remedy.

     Excerpt from Douglas Laycock’s Modern American Remedies (2010):

     “A remedy is anything a court can do for a litigant who has been wronged or is about to be wronged.  The two most common remedies are judgments that plaintiffs are entitled to collect sums of money from defendants (damages) & orders to defendants to refrain from their wrongful conduct or to undo its consequences (injunctions).  The court decides whether the litigant has been wronged under the substantive law that governs primary rights & duties; it conducts its inquiry in accordance with the procedural law, & sometimes their details blur into procedure. For long periods in our past, remedies were casually equated with procedure.” [2]

Equitable Remedy – (18c) A remedy, usually a non-monetary one such as an injunction or specific performance, obtained when available legal remedies, usually monetary damages, cannot adequate] redress the injury.  *  Historically, an equitable remedy was available only from a court of equity. – Also termed equitable relief, equitable damages. See IRREPARABLE-INJURY RULE.

     Excerpt from John Norton Pomeroy’s A Treatise on Equity Jurisprudence (1918):

     “Where are certain species of equitable remedies which have become well established and familiarly known, and which are commonly designated by the term ‘equitable remedies’ wherever it is used. They may be separated into three classes:

1. Those which are entirely different from any kind of reliefs known and granted by the law.  Of this class are the preventive remedy of Injunction, the restorative remedy of Mandatory injunction, the remedies of Reformation, Specific Performance, and many others.
2. Those which the legal procedure recognizes, but does not directly confer, and the beneficial results of which it obtains in an indirect manner.  A familiar example is the relief of Rescission or Cancellation.  A court of equity entertains a suit for the express purpose of procuring a contract or conveyance to be canceled, and renders a decree conferring in terms that exact relief.  A court ‘of law entertains an action for the recovery of the possession of chattels, or, under some circumstances, for the recovery of land, or for the recovery of damages, and although nothing is said concerning it, either in the pleadings or in the judgment, a contract or a conveyance, as the case may be, is virtually rescinded; the recovery is based upon the fact of such rescission, and could not have been granted unless the rescission had taken place. Here the remedy of cancellation is not expressly asked for, nor granted by the court of law, but all its effects are indirectly obtained in the legal action. It is true, the equitable remedy is much broader in its scope, and more complete in its relief; for its effects are not confined to the particular action, but by removing the obnoxious instrument they extend to all future claims and actions based upon it.
3. Those which are substantially the same both in equity and at the law.  Familiar examples of this class are the partition of land among co-owners, and the admeasurement of dower, in which the final relief granted by equity is the same as that obtained through the now almost obsolete legal actions; the process of accounting and determining the balance in favor of one or the other party; and even, under special circumstances, the award of pecuniary damages expressly.” [3]


n. (16c.) A court order commanding or preventing an action. To get an injunction, the complainant must show that there is not plain, adequate, & complete remedy at law & that an irreparable injury will result unless the relief is granted. — aka writ of injunctionequitable injunction.

     Excerpt from Howard C. Joyce’s A Treatise on the Law Relating to Injunctions:

      “In a general sense, every order of a court which commands or forbids is an injunction, but in its accepted legal sense, an injunction is a judicial process or mandate operating in personam by which, upon certain established principled of equity, a party is required to do or refrain from doing a particular thing. An injunction has also been defined as a writ framed according to the circumstances of the case, commanding an act which the court regards as essential to justice, or restraining an act, which it esteems contrary to equity & good conscience; as a remedial writ which courts issue for the purpose of enforcing their equity jurisdiction; & as a writ issuing by the order & under the seal of a court of equity. [4]

irreparable-injury rule:

“(1969) The principle that equitable relief(such as an injunction) is available only when no adequate legal remedy (such as monetary damages) exists. Although courts continue to cite this rule, they do not usually follow it literally in practice. — aka adequacy test.

      Excerpt from Douglas Laycock, The Death of the Irreparable Injury Rule (1991):

     “The irreparable injury rule has received considerable
scholarly attention. In 1978, Owen Fiss examined the possible reasons for the rule & found them wanting. A vigorous debate over the economic wisdom of applying the rule to specific performance of contracts began about the same time, & soon came to center on the transaction costs of administering the two remedies. Both Fiss & Dan Dobbs have noted that the rule does not seem to be taken very seriously, &in a review of Fiss’s book, I
argued that the definition of adequacy pulls most of the rule’s teeth. The Restatement (Second) of Torts dropped the rule from the blackletter & condemned it as misleading, but replaced it only with a long & unstructured list of factors to be considered… [M}any sophisticated lawyers believe that the rule continues to
reflect a serious preference for legal over equitable remedies. [5]

Restitution – a set of laws & remedies designed to help victims who were injured by acts of criminal fraud


n. (14c) 1. Criminal law. Punishment imposed for a serious offense; requital. Cf. DETERRENCE; REHABILITATION (1) 2. Something justly deserved; repayment; reward. — retributive, adj.retribute, vb.


n. (15c.) Repayment, compensation, or retribution for something, especially an injury or loss. — recompense, vb.”


n. (14c.) 1. The giving of something with the intention, express or implied, that it is to extinguish some existing legal or moral obligation. Satisfaction differs from performance because it is always something given as a substitute for or equivalent of something else, while performance is the identical thing promised to be done. — Also termed satisfaction of debt. 2. The fulfillment of an obligation; especially, the payment in full of a debt. — satisfy, vb.”

     Excerpt from R.E. Megarry, Snell’s principles of Equity 226-27 z923d ed. 1947))

     “Satisfaction closely resembles performance. Both
depend upon presumed intention to carry out an obligation, but in satisfaction the thing done is something different from the thing agreed to be done, whereas in performance the identical act which the party contracted to do is considered to have been done. The cases on satisfaction are usually grouped under four heads, namely,

1.) satisfaction of debts by legacies
2.) satisfaction of legacies by legacies
3.) satisfaction (or ademption) of legacies by portions
4.) satisfaction of portion-

debts by legacies, or by portions, really cases of satisfaction; for satisfaction presupposes an obligation, which, of course, does
not exist in the case of a legacy in the will of a living person.”

Accord and Satisfaction:

“(18c.) An agreement to substitute for an existing debt some alternative form of discharging that debt, coupled with the actual discharge of the debt by the substituted performance. The new agreement is called the accord, & the discharge is called the satisfaction.”

     Excerpt from 1 E.W. Chance, Principles of Mercantile Law 101 (P.W. French ed. 1950):

     “’Accord & satisfaction’ means an agreement between
the parties that something shall be given to, or done for, the person who has the right of action, in satisfaction of the cause of action. There must be not only agreement (‘accord’) but also consideration (‘satisfaction’). Such an arrangement is really one of substituted performance.”


vb. 1. To furnish or grant, especially what what is suitable or proper <accord the litigants to stay of costs pending appeal> 2. To agree <they accord in their opinions>


n. (15c.) 1. An agreement between two or more persons to settle matters in dispute between them; an agreement for the settlement of a real or supposed claim
in which each party surrenders something in concession to the other. — Also termed compromise and settlement; (erroneously) compromise settlement. See
COMPOSITION (1). 2. A debtor’s partial payment coupled with the creditor’s
promise not to claim the rest of the amount due or claimed. . — compromise, vb.”


n. (14c) 1. Remuneration & other benefits received in return for services rendered; especially salary or wages.”

    Excerpt from Kurt H. Decker & H. Thomas Felix II, Drafting & Revising Employment Contracts § 3.17, at 68 (1991):

     “Compensation consists of wages & benefits in return
for services. It is payment for work. If the work contracted for is not done, there is no obligation to pay. [Compensation] includes wages, stock option plans, profit-sharing, commissions, bonuses, golden parachutes, vacation, sick pay, medical benefits, disability, leaves of absence, & expense reimbursement.”

“2. Payment of damages, or any other act that a court orders to be done by a person who has caused injury to another. In theory, compensation makes the injured person whole. 3. SETOFF (2). — compensatory, compensational, adj.

Just Compensation:

(16c) Under the Fifth Amendment, a payment by the government for property it has taken under eminent domain – usually the property’s fair market value, so that the owner is theoretically no worse off after the taking. – Also termed adequate compensation; due compensation; land damages.


vb. (17c) 1. To reimburse (another) for a loss suffered because of a third party’s or one’s own act or default; HOLD HARMLESS.  2. To promise to reimburse (another) for such a loss.  3. To give (another) security against such a loss. – indemnifiable, adj.


All material utilized in accordance with Fair Use.

[1]: All definitions from: Black’s Law Dictionary Deluxe Tenth Edition by Henry Campbell Black & Editor in Chief Bryan A. Garner. ISBN: 978-0-314-62130-6

[2]: Douglas Laycock, Modern American Remedies 1 (4th ed. 2010)

[3]: 1 John Norton Pomeroy, A Treatise on Equity Jurisprudence 123-25 (John Norton Pomeroy Jr, ed., 4th ed. 1918)

[4]: 1 Howard C. Joyce, A Treatise on the Law Relating to
Injunctions § 1, at 2-3 (1909)

[5]: Douglas Laycock, The Death of the Irreparable Injury
Rule 9 (1991)


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