BEST & COMPANY, INC. V. MAXWELL, 311 U. S. 454 (1940)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Best & Company, Inc. v. Maxwell, 311 U.S. 454 (1940)

Best & Company, Inc. v. Maxwell

No. 61

Argued November 22, 1940

Decided December 23, 1940

311 U.S. 454


1. A state statute which levies an annual privilege tax of $250 on every person or corporation, not a regular retail merchant in the State, who displays samples in any hotel room or house rented or occupied temporarily for the purpose of securing retail orders held invalid under the Federal Constitution as a discrimination against interstate commerce. P. 311 U. S. 456.

So held as applied to a nonresident merchant who took orders in the State and shipped interstate directly to customers, and where the only corresponding fixed-sum license tax exacted of "regular retail merchants" was $1 per annum for the privilege of doing business.

2. The freedom of commerce which allows the merchants of each State a regional or national market for their goods may not be fettered by legislation the actual effect of which is to discriminate in favor of intrastate businesses. P. 311 U. S. 457.

216 N.C. 114; 3 S.E.2d 292, reversed.

Appeal from a judgment reversing a judgment for the plaintiff in a suit for refund of a license tax. See also 217 N.C. 134; 6 S.E.2d 893.