MARSHALL FIELD & CO. V. LABOR BOARD, 318 U. S. 253 (1943)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Marshall Field & Co. v. Labor Board, 318 U.S. 253 (1943)

Marshall Field & Co. v. National Labor Relations Board

No. 453

Argued February 3, 1943

Decided March 1, 1943

318 U.S. 253




1. Benefits received under the Illinois Unemployment Compensation Act were not "earnings" within the meaning of an order of the National Labor Relations Board requiring an employer to pay to certain discharged employees sums equal to what they normally would have earned, less their "net earnings," during the prescribed period. P. 318 U. S. 255.

2. Since it does not appear from the record that the question of the National Labor Relations Board's authority to award backpay chanrobles.com-red

Page 318 U. S. 254

without deduction of benefit received under the Illinois Unemployment Compensation Act was at any stage of the proceedings before the Board, presented to the Board or to any member or agent thereof, or that there were any "extraordinary circumstances" which would excuse such failure, its consideration on review was precluded by § 10(e) of the National Labor Relations Act. P. 318 U. S. 255.

3. Assuming that the requirements of § 10(e) may, with the consent of the court, be waived, the reservation in the consent decree of "jurisdiction" to consider the question in this case was not a waiver, but left the matter to be determined according to law. P. 318 U. S. 256.

129 F.2d 169 affirmed.

CERTIORARI, 317 U.S. 617, to review a decree ordering enforcement of an order of the National Labor Relations Board.


In this case, the Labor Board ordered petitioner to compensate certain of its employees for loss of pay suffered as a result of their discriminatory discharge in violation of the National Labor Relations Act. Paragraph 2(b) of the order directed that petitioner "make whole" the employees by payment to them of a sum "equal to that which they would normally have earned as wages" during the specified period, less their "net earnings" during the period (34 N.L.R.B. 1, 21). On consent of the parties, the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit enforced the other provisions of the Board's order and reserved "jurisdiction" to determine whether Paragraph 2(b) permitted petitioner to deduct benefits received by the employees chanrobles.com-red

Page 318 U. S. 255

under the Illinois Unemployment Compensation Act, Ill.Rev.Stat. 1941, c. 48, §§ 217-250, and, if not, whether, to that extent, the order was within the power of the Board. On consideration of the questions reserved, the court construed the order as not permitting such a deduction, and held that, so construed, it was within the Board's authority. 129 F.2d 169. An appropriate enforcement decree was entered, and we granted certiorari. 317 U.S. 617.

We agree with the court below that the benefits received under the state compensation act were plainly not "earnings" which, under the terms of the Board's order, could be deducted from the backpay awarded. And, upon examination of the record, we think the Board's order should be enforced without considering the question whether such a provision is within the Board's authority.

Section 10(e) of the Act, 29 U.S.C. § 160(e), provides that

"No objection that has not been urged before the Board, its member, agent or agency, shall be considered by the court unless the failure or neglect to urge such objection shall be excused because of extraordinary circumstances."

We do not find that, at any stage of the proceedings before the Board, the objection now urged as to the Board's lack of power was presented to it or to any member or agent of the Board, or that there are any "extraordinary circumstances" which would excuse such failure.

Paragraph 2(b) of the Board's order is, in substance, the recommendation of the intermediate report of the trial examiner. Yet petitioner's only objection to this part of the examiner's report was that the examiner had erred "in making each and every recommendation." Such a general objection did not apprise the Board that petitioner intended to press the question now presented, and may well account for the Board's failure to consider this question in its decision and to make findings with respect to it. chanrobles.com-red

Page 318 U. S. 256

The present case gives emphasis to the salutary policy adopted by Section 10(e) of affording the Board opportunity to consider on the merits questions to be urged upon review of its order. In objecting to Paragraph 2(b) for its want of support in the Board's findings, petitioner contends that the Illinois unemployment compensation fund is, in substance, an unemployment insurance fund built up wholly from tax contributions by employers; that the benefits received from the fund by the employees cannot, under state law, be reclaimed or refunded, and that the eligibility of these employees for future benefits from the fund has not been impaired because of the benefits already paid to them. Findings with respect to these contentions are an appropriate, if not indispensable, basis for judicial review of the question sought to be raised. We think Section 10(e) makes its presentation to the Board a prerequisite to judicial review.

The reservation in the consent decree of "jurisdiction" to consider this objection was not a waiver by the Board or the court of conformity to the requirements of Section 10(e). Assuming that such a waiver might be made with the assent of the court, we cannot read in the consent decree anything more than a reservation of the court's jurisdiction to decide the question according to law.

For the reason that the record does not show compliance with Section 10(e) with respect to the question raised as to the Board's authority, the decree is


MR. JUSTICE RUTLEDGE took no part in the consideration or decision of this case.


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