Interstate Commerce Commission v. Transcon Lines

PETITIONER:Interstate Commerce Commission
RESPONDENT:Transcon Lines et al.
LOCATION:Schwegmann’s Grocery Store

DOCKET NO.: 93-1318
DECIDED BY: Rehnquist Court (1986-2005)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

CITATION: 513 US 138 (1995)
ARGUED: Nov 01, 1994
DECIDED: Jan 10, 1995

Leonard L. Gumport – on behalf of the Respondents
Lawrence G. Wallace – on behalf of the Petitioner

Facts of the case


Media for Interstate Commerce Commission v. Transcon Lines

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument – November 01, 1994 in Interstate Commerce Commission v. Transcon Lines

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement – January 10, 1995 in Interstate Commerce Commission v. Transcon Lines

William H. Rehnquist:

The opinion of the Court in two cases will be announced by Justice Kennedy.

Anthony M. Kennedy:

The first case I have to announce for the Court is Interstate Commerce Commission versus TRANSCOM.

This is another in a series of recent cases from the Court involving the Filed Rate Doctrine.

Interstate Commerce Act requires motor carriers to file rates applicable to shippers and these rates maybe collected even if the shipper and the carrier later agree upon some lesser amount.

In Maislin Industries versus Primary Steel decided in 1990.

We held that the ICC could not interpret the bar on unreasonable practices to prevent carriers from suing for the filed-rate.

We reason that this would undermine the filed-rate doctrine.

In the case before as a trucking company now in bankruptcy seeks through its bankruptcy trustee to collect liquidateddamages from its former customers.

The ICC soon joined these collections because the carrier had not complied the certain ICC credit regulations.

The original bills did not advise the penalty for late payment.

Revised bills were not issued within 90 days and the damages were being applied in the aggregate instead of in separate bills.

All of these violations were in contravention of the regulations of the ICC.

The bankruptcy trustee defended against the injunction of the ICC sought and it sided Maislin.

The District Court in the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit agreed with the trustee that Maislin applied.

We remanded to the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for further consideration in light of an intervening decision of this court that intervening decision was Ryder versus Cooper.

The Court of Appeals adhered to its earlier decision, we again granted certiorari and we now reverse.

The Interstate Commerce Commission can pursue those remedies necessary to prevent the carrier from violation as regulations.

Injunctive remedy sought here appears to the ICC and to us necessary to the effective enforcement of the regulations.

Remedy serves to protect the regulations intended beneficiary, so our conclusion follows from our 1982 decision in Southern Pacific Company versus Commercial Metals and it’s that decision not the Maislin case that is the applicable President here.

The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit is accordingly reversed and the case is remanded and the opinion is unanimous.