Missouri, Kansas & Texas Ry. Co. v. United States
256 U.S. 610 (1921)

Annotate this Case

U.S. Supreme Court

Missouri, Kansas & Texas Ry. Co. v. United States, 256 U.S. 610 (1921)

Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railway Company v. United States

No. 52

Submitted April 26, 1921

Decided June 6, 1921

256 U.S. 610

Syllabus

1. After a railroad company had entered into a contract to carry the mails with notice that it would be subject to all postal laws and regulations which were or might become applicable during the term of the service and that the adjustment of compensation based on weighings of the mails carried during 90 working days was subject to further orders, as well as fines and deductions, it discontinued an important train, and thereby occasioned a diversion of part of the mails to other lines; the Post Office Department, upon the authority of the Act of August 24, 1912, c. 389, 37 Stat. 539, enacted after the contract was entered into, weighed the diverted mails for 21 days and readjusted the compensation accordingly. Held that such readjustment did not violate the contract, although it diminished the compensation, and in part retroactively. P. 256 U. S. 613. Delaware, Lackawanna & Western R. Co. v. United States,249 U. S. 385; Mail Divisor Cases,251 U. S. 326.

2. The Act of 1912, supra, allows the readjustment to be made after a weighing of the diverted mails only, and the proviso (since repealed) that they must equal ten percent "of the average daily

Page 256 U. S. 611

weight on any of the routes affected" refers to the average daily weight ascertained by the last previous general weighing, and means ten percent not upon all, but upon some one, of the routes affected. Pp. 256 U. S. 614-615.

3. The act also allows the readjustment to relate back to the first of July previous to the date of the act. P. 256 U. S. 614.

53 Ct.Clms. 641 affirmed.

The case is stated in the opinion.

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