Erhardt v. Schroeder - 155 U.S. 124 (1894)
U.S. Supreme Court
Erhardt v. Schroeder, 155 U.S. 124 (1894)
Erhardt v. Schroeder
Argued January 24-25, 1894
Decided November 12, 1894
155 U.S. 124
It is a general rule that provisions in statutes imposing taxation, though not in terms mandatory, are to be regarded as such if necessary for the substantial protection of the taxpayer.
The customs laws, however, give to the complaining importer an ample remedy, only putting him to the inconvenience of seeking it in a legal tribunal.
In an action to recover duties alleged to have been illegally exacted, the burden is on the importer to overcome the presumption of a legal collection by proof that their exaction was unlawful.
Although the appraisement of goods by customs officers is not ordinarily open to judicial review, that rule does not apply when the value is determined by a classification made by the officer.
The provision in Schedule F, of the Act of March 3, 1883, c. 121, 22 Stat. 488, 503, imposing a duty upon leaf tobacco evidently requires that 85 percent of half leaves are to be of the requisite size and necessary fineness of texture for wrappers, or, in other words, that each of 85 half-leaves
out of 100 half leaves must contain a portion sufficiently fine in texture, of the requisite size to make at least one wrapper.
The further provision in that schedule "of which more than 100 leaves are required to weigh a pound" refers to whole leaves, in their natural state.
The case is stated in the opinion.