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CARTER V. STANTON, 405 U. S. 669 (1972)

U.S. Supreme Court

Carter v. Stanton, 405 U.S. 669 (1972)

Carter v. Stanton

No. 70-5082

Argued November 8, 1971

Decided April 3, 1972

405 U.S. 669


Appellants' challenge to the Indiana welfare regulation that provides that a person who seeks assistance due to separation or the desertion of a spouse is not entitled to aid until the spouse has been continuously absent for at least six months, unless there are exceptional circumstances of need, was dismissed for failure to exhaust administrative remedies, and alternatively on the grounds of lack of jurisdiction and failure of the pleadings to present a substantial federal question.

Held: The District Court plainly had jurisdiction, and exhaustion is not required in the circumstances of this case. Damico v. Californa, 389 U. S. 416. If that court's characterization of the federal question as insubstantial was based on the face of the complaint, it was error; if the court treated the motion to dismiss as one for summary judgment, its order is unilluminating as to the relevant facts or the applicable law, and was improperly entered.

Vacated and remanded.

Page 405 U. S. 670

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