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VANDALIA R. CO. V. SCHNULL, 255 U. S. 113 (1921)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Vandalia R. Co. v. Schnull, 255 U.S. 113 (1921)

Vandalia Railroad Company v. Schnull

No. 125

Argued December 16, 17, 1920

Decided February 28, 1921

255 U.S. 113


1. A railroad rate fixed by state authority violates the Fourteenth Amendment if it does not yield the carrier a reasonable return upon the class of traffic to which it applies. P. 255 U. S. 119.

2. A rate which, so tested, is deficient is not saved by the fact that the intrastate business as a whole is remunerative. Id. Northern Pacific Ry. Co. v. North Dakota, 236 U. S. 585; Norfolk & Western Ry. Co. v. West Virginia, 236 U. S. 605. chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 255 U. S. 114

3. An answer should be construed with recognition of its implications and with regard to the issue to which it is addressed. P. 255 U. S. 121.

4. In reviewing the decision of a state court upholding a state railroad rate against a charge of confiscation, this Court will follow that court in assuming that the issue was sufficiently raised by the pleadings and defined by the evidence. P. 255 U. S. 122.

5. In a suit by shippers to enforce obedience by a railroad company to an order of a state Commission fixing rates, held that a contention, made by the plaintiff for the first time in this Court, to the effect that the company's remedy was by direct review of the order under the state law, could not be entertained where the state court, without referring to such remedy, had considered the company's defense of confiscation upon the merits and decided against it. Id.

6. A bill brought by a railroad company against a state Commission to enjoin enforcement of an order fixing rates assailed as confiscatory was dismissed without prejudice because inadequacy of the rates was not proven by the evidence. Held not res judicata in a subsequent suit by shippers against the company to compel it to observe the order in futuro. P. 255 U. S. 123.

188 Ind. 87 reversed.

The case is stated in the opinion.

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