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Pennsylvania R. Co. v. Stineman Coal Mining Co., 242 U.S. 298 (1916)

Pennsylvania Railroad Company v.

Stineman Coal Mining Company

No. 11

Argued May 14, 1915

Restored to docket for reargument June 14, 1915

Reargued October 25, 1915

Decided December 18, 1916

242 U.S. 298


An action against an interstate carrier for damages caused by unfair and discriminatory departures from a rule of car distribution in times of car shortage may be prosecuted in a state court. Pennsylvania R. Co. v. Sonman Shaft Coal Co., ante, 242 U. S. 120.

The rule of car distribution relied on by the plaintiff having been held discriminatory and illegal by the Interstate Commerce Commission in due proceedings at the complaint of other shippers, and this being proven by reports and orders of the Commission produced in evidence, held that the administrative question so determined could not be revived by the carrier to oust the jurisdiction of the court.

By such proceedings of the Commission, the Act to Regulate Commerce intends no less to redress past discriminations than prevent them in future, under the carrier's rule, and this for the benefit of all shippers who have been or may be affected thereby, and when the Commission finds the rule obnoxious not because of temporary or changeable conditions, but inherently and from its adoption, and, besides

Page 242 U. S. 299

ordering its discontinuance, recognizes that all injured shippers are entitled to reparation and awards it to such as appear and prove damages, the status of the rule is fixed for past as well as future transactions under it.

Where a rule is found discriminatory by the Commission in the circumstances indicated in the last preceding paragraph, a shipper, though not a party before the Commission, cannot recover from the carrier for its failures to obey the rule before the finding was made.

241 Pa.St. 509 reversed.

The case is stated in the opinion.

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