Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Illinois Central R.R. Co. v. Crail case brief

Illinois Central R.R. Co. v. Crail case brief summary
281 U.S. 57 (1930)

CASE SYNOPSIS
Petitioner sought review of a Circuit Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit judgment under the Cummins Amendment, 49 U.S.C.S. § 20(11), for the retail value of coal not delivered.

CASE FACTS
Respondent coal dealer purchased a carload of coal while it was in transit. On delivery there was a shortage. The coal was added to his stock of coal for resale, but the shortage did not interfere with maintenance of his usual stock. He lost no sales by reason of it. The lower court gave judgment for the retail value of coal not delivered, and the court of appeals affirmed.

DISCUSSION

  • On further appeal, the court reversed. 
  • The language of Cummins Amendment, 49 U.S.C.S. § 20(11), gave only a right of recovery for actual loss. 
  • The cost of replacing the exact shortage at retail price was not measure of loss, since it was capable of replacement and was, in fact, replaced in the course of respondent's business from purchases made in carload lots at wholesale market price without added expense. 
  • The wholesale market price was to be preferred as a test over retail when in the circumstances it was clearly a more accurate measure.
CONCLUSION
Judgment reversed because the cost of replacing the exact shortage at retail price was not the measure of loss, since it was capable of replacement at a wholesale price.


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