Status Quo in Law: Examining Current Legal Standards

May 26, 2023, 11:30 am | Updated June 1, 2023, 11:32 am IST
Status Quo in Law: Examining Current Legal Standards
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The term "Status quo" is a Latin phrase which refers to current situation. This phrase is specifically related to religious, political and social matters. The status quo, in sociology means the way things are currently in terms of social structure or values. It refers to the current state of affairs in relation to a potential change in policy. In this article, we will be discussing about what is status quo in legal matter, especially in property law matters.

What is Staus Quo in Law?

In law, the phrase "status quo" describes the current state of affairs. To prevent any of the parties to a dispute from acting while the matter is still being adjudicated, a judge may issue a status quo order. In order to protect a party's position while awaiting a settlement, it seeks to prevent harm or maintain the current status.

Examples of Status Quo

Status Quo in Family Law

A status quo order may be issued in the context of family law to stop one parent from taking a kid out of the house or out of the neighborhood without the other parent's approval. The other parent may request a status quo order. These orders are intended to safeguard the kid during custody disputes until the parties can reach an amicable agreement on a parenting schedule or until the court has sufficient information to determine interim custody.

Status Quo in Labor Law

Under labour legislation, employees may not be fired or subjected to discrimination as a result of a status quo order imposed after submitting a grievance. The order may compel the employer to end negotiations and forbid the business from altering the employees' pay, working conditions, or hours.

Status Quo in Property Law

Under Property Law, Status quo refers to upholding the status or condition of the thing/property in question. You cannot sell, sublet, lease, or do anything with the property if a property lawsuit has resulted in an order to maintain the status quo. The property must remain in the same condition as it did on the day the order was passed.

If a court issues a status quo order for a piece of property, it signifies that both the possession and the title fall under the definition of status quo. When a lawsuit is filed and status quo is ordered, the individual having possession and title must continue to hang onto them until the lawsuit is resolved. In essence, the status quo is imposed to prevent the transfer of any party interests in the property under the Transfer of Property Act, including leasing, selling, mortgaging, gifting, willing, and other acts.

The only restriction on the transfer of rights, title, or interest in the property to a third party is if a status quo is ordered. However, the party who is in possession of the property will be free to enjoy the possession of the property as he or she feels like. He or she shall continue to conduct business or use the property as he or she was using. As status quo is not a stay order, the profits derived from the property by a person is not required to stop because status quo is not stopping any activity to be conducted.

The doctrine of Lis Pendence, envisioned under Section 52 of the Transfer of Property Act, will, however, automatically govern actions related to selling, buying, or transferring title in the property if a lawsuit is pending against it. Status quo does not bar any of the rights of the property holder; only the right to transfer the property gets put on hold while the matter is pending. The person who is currently enjoying the property would continue to do so, and if he encounters any interference with this right, he or she may sue the person who is causing dispute.


From the above analysis, it can be concluded that status quo is preserved only with regard to title and possession of the disputed property, and nothing else should be extended with respect to it, if a court issues an order pertaining to the maintenance of Status Quo with regard to a disputed property.

Also, it is clear that maintaining the status quo is distinct from stay orders, where the court directs the individual to perform or refrain from performing an act; as a result, stay orders are targeted only at a specific person. The only restriction on a person with regard to the maintenance of status quo is that he is not allowed to alienate the property or develop any third party interests in it. If you have any such property disputes of status quo, it is advised to contact a property lawyer in your area. For example, if you are in Kolkata, then contact a property lawyer in Kolkata to handle your issue.



  • What is status quo in court case?

    The phrase "status quo" frequently describes the current state of affairs. To prevent any of the parties to a dispute from acting while the matter is still being adjudicated, a judge may issue a status quo order.

  • What is an example of status quo?

    An example of a status quo in property law is the concept of "adverse possession." Adverse possession is a legal principle that allows someone who has occupied and possessed another person's property openly and without interruption for a specified period of time to potentially gain legal ownership of that property.

  • What is an example of a status quo in law?

    If a property lawsuit results in an order to maintain the status quo, you are not allowed to sell, sublet, lease, or otherwise deal with the property. The property must remain in the same condition as it did on the day the order was passed.

  • What is difference between status quo and stay order?

    The status quo only preserves the status with regard to title and possession of the disputed property, and nothing. On the other hand through stay orders, the court directs the individual to perform or refrain from performing an act.
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