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U.S. Supreme Court

Liberty Warehouse Co. v. Grannis, 273 U.S. 70 (1927)

Liberty Warehouse Company v. Grannis

No. 60

Argued December 7, 1926

Decided January 3, 1927

273 U.S. 70


1. Under Art. III of the Constitution, the jurisdiction of the federal courts is limited to cases and controversies presented in such form, with adverse litigants, that the judicial power is capable of acting upon them and of pronouncing and carrying into effect a judgment between the parties, and does not extend to the determination of abstract questions or issues framed for the purpose of invoking the advice of the court without real parties or a real case. P. 273 U. S. 73.

2. So held of a proceeding in the district court brought under the Declaratory Judgment Law of Kentucky against a prosecuting attorney for the purpose of obtaining a declaration concerning the construction and validity of an act of the state regulating sales of leaf tobacco at public auction, in which there was no allegation that the plaintiffs had done or were contemplating any of the things forbidden by and punishable under the Act, or that the defendant threatened proceedings against them, or any prayer for relief against him.

3. The federal Conformity Act relates only to "practice, pleadings, and forms and modes of procedure," and neither purports to nor can extend the jurisdiction of the district courts beyond the constitutional limitations. P. 273 U. S. 76. chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 273 U. S. 71

4. Section 274a of the Judicial Code relate merely to a case in which the objection is to the side of the court on which the suit is brought, and not to the entire lack of jurisdiction in the court. P. 273 U. S. 76.


Error to a judgment of the district court dismissing for want of jurisdiction an action brought under the Declaratory Judgment Law of Kentucky.

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