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UNITED STATES V. MILLER, 317 U. S. 369 (1943)

U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Miller, 317 U.S. 369 (1943)

United States v. Miller

No. 78

Argued November 16, 17, 1942

Decided January 4, 1943

317 U.S. 369


1. Where, from the date of its authorization by Act of Congress, a federal reclamation project included the relocation of a line of railroad, and a probable route was marked out over certain lands subsequently taken in eminent domain proceedings, it is proper, in determining just compensation, to exclude from value as of the date of the taking such increase as occurred since the date of the authorization of the project and as a result thereof. P. 317 U. S. 377.

2. The exclusion from value, as of the date of the taking, of any increase which occurred since the date of the authorization of the project and as a result thereof is applicable also in the determination of severance damage. P. 317 U. S. 379.

3. Although the federal court, in eminent domain proceedings, is required by federal statutes to follow the forms and methods of procedure prescribed by local law, it is not bound by the local law on questions of substantive right -- such as the measure of compensation -- which are governed by the Federal Constitution. P. 317 U. S. 379.

4. The District Court's alleged disregard of the local practice in respect to the admission of opinion evidence as to value did not in this case involve substantial or prejudicial error. P. 317 U. S. 380.

5. Where, pursuant to the Act of February 26, 1931, the Government, in a proceeding in eminent domain, files a declaration of taking and deposits with the court the amount of estimated compensation, it is entitled to recover the excess of such amount over the amount of the award. P. 317 U. S. 380.

6. The inclusion in a general judgment in condemnation proceedings of a judgment of restitution for the amount by which the sum deposited by the Government and paid to the landowners exceeded the amount subsequently awarded as just compensation did not, in this case, deny due process in violation of the Fifth Amendment, for, upon defendants' motions to set aside the judgments, there was full opportunity for a hearing. P. 317 U. S. 382.

125 F.2d 75 reversed.

Page 317 U. S. 370

Certiorari, 316 U.S. 657, to review the reversal of a judgment for the Government against certain landowners in eminent domain proceedings.

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