Mitchell v. United States,
267 U.S. 341 (1925)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Mitchell v. United States, 267 U.S. 341 (1925)

Mitchell v. United States

No. 176

Argued January 15, 1925

Decided March 2, 1925

267 U.S. 341


1. The Act of October 6, 1917, c. 79, 40 Stat. 345, to increase facilities for testing ordnance materials, appropriated money to pay for buildings, land, etc., "and damages and losses to persons resulting from the procurement of the land," and provided that, if land and improvements could not be procured by purchase, the

Page 267 U. S. 342

President was authorized to take them over, with all appurtenant rights, and the United States should make jut compensation therefor, to be determined by the President, and that, if the amount so determined were unsatisfactory to the person entitled, he should be paid 75% of it and be entitled to sue the United States under Jud.Code, §§ 24 and 145, to recover such further sum as added to the 75% would make up jut compensation.

Held: That persons whose land was taken and who accepted the compensation fixed by the President were not thereby precluded from claiming additional compensation under the Fifth Amendment, as for a taking of their business, or from claiming damages under the Act itself for the loss of the business. P. 267 U. S. 344.

2. It is a settled rule that damages resulting from a loss or destruction of business incidental to a taking of land are not recoverable as part of the compensation for the land taken. Id.

3. By its reference to "losses . . . resulting from procurement of land," the above Act doubtless authorized the Secretary of War to consider losses resulting from destruction of business when procuring land by agreement, but it is not to be construed as a departure from the settled policy of Congress to limit compensation for a taking of land to interests in the land taken. P. 267 U. S. 345.

58 Ct.Clms. 443 affirmed.

Appeal from a judgment of the Court of Claims rejecting, after full hearing, a claim for compensation for destruction of appellants' business resulting from the taking of their land and other land in the vicinity.

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