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U.S. Supreme Court

Nevada-California-Oregon Ry. v. Burrus, 244 U.S. 103 (1917)

Nevada-California-Oregon Ry. v. Burrus

No. 237

Submitted April 30, 1917

Decided May 21, 1917

244 U.S. 103


In an action against a carrier for breach of a contract to furnish an interstate train, the defendant objected when the trial opened that no rate for such trains had been filed with the Intestate Commerce Commission and, while the trial was in progress, offered an amendment chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 244 U. S. 104

to the answer setting up this defense. Under the state practice, the defense was not cognizable unless pleaded, and the amendment, not having been suggested until months after the commencement of the action while other defenses had been interposed, was rejected by the state trial court as coming too late, and this ruling was affirmed by the state supreme court as a proper exercise of the trial court's discretion. It being evident that the decision merely enforced the state practice with no purpose to evade the claim of federal right, held that a writ of error from this Court must be dismissed.

In the trial of an action against a carrier upon a contract for interstate transportation, the plaintiff may be entitled to the presumption that the carrier filed such rates as were requisite to sustain the contract, the pleadings being silent on the subject.

Writ of error to review 38 Nev. 156 dismissed.

The case is stated in the opinion.

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