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U.S. Supreme Court

Krauss Bros. Lumber Co. v. Dimon Steamship Corp., 290 U.S. 117 (1933)

Krauss Bros Lumber Co. v. Dimon Steamship Corp.

No. 4

Argued October 10, 11, 1933

Decided November 13, 1933

290 U.S. 117


1. There is a duty on a ship, arising out of the contract of affreightment, not only to carry the cargo and deliver it safely, but also to charge no more as freight than the contract allows. P. 290 U. S. 121.

2. When excessive freight is collected at time of delivery, under circumstances such that the owner is bound to repay it, there is a maritime lien on the ship, in favor of cargo, for the amount of overpayment. Id.

3. The fact that neither party knew at time of payment that the freight demanded was excessive does not affect the existence of the lien. P. 290 U. S. 125.

4. Neither is the lien affected by the consideration that the demand for excess freight paid by mistake would be at common law for money had and received; admiralty is not concerned with the form, but with the substance of the demand which is founded on the breach of the contract of affreightment. P. 290 U. S. 124.

5. The principle that maritime liens, being secret, are stricti juris and not to be extended by implication does not mean that the right to the lien is not to be recognized and upheld, when within accepted supporting principles, merely because the circumstance which call for its recognition are unusual or infrequent. P. 290 U. S. 125.

6. The principle of mutuality between ship and cargo applies to their obligations under the contract of affreightment, not to the liens that result from breach of those obligations. P. 290 U. S. 125.

61 F.2d 187 reversed.

Certiorari, 289 U.S. 716, to review the affirmance of a decree of a District Court, 53 F.2d 492, dismissing a libel in rem.

Page 290 U. S. 120

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