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U.S. Supreme Court

Metropolitan Cas. Ins. Co. v. Brownell, 294 U.S. 580 (1935)

Metropolitan Casualty Insurance Co. v. Brownell

No. 20

Argued October 15, 1934

Decided March 18, 1935

294 U.S. 580


1. A discrimination in the state law between foreign and domestic casualty insurance corporations, whereby the former are forbidden to limit by agreement to less than three years the time within which suit may be brought against them on their contracts, whereas the latter are free to stipulate for any limitation that is reasonable, is not necessarily a denial of the equal protection of the laws, but may be justified by differences between the two classes of corporations with respect to the security and collection of claims against them. Pp. 294 U. S. 583-585.

2. The burden of establishing the unconstitutionality of a statute rests on him who assails it, and courts may not declare a legislative discrimination invalid unless, in the light of facts made known or generally assumed, it is of such a character as to preclude the assumption that the classiication rests upon some rational basis within the knowledge and experience of the legislators. Pp. 294 U. S. 584-586. chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 294 U. S. 581

3. That the legislature has pursued a different policy with regard to life insurance companies by extending the prohibition here in question to both foreign and domestic companies of that class does not, of itself, establish that the discrimination between foreign and domestic casualty companie is arbitrary. P. 294 U. S. 586.

68 F.2d 481 affirmed.

Certiorari, 292 U.S. 620, to review a judgment affirming a judgment against the casualty company in an action against it to recover on an indemnity bond.

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