FUNKHOUSER V. J. B. PRESTON CO., INC., 290 U. S. 163 (1933)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Funkhouser v. J. B. Preston Co., Inc., 290 U.S. 163 (1933)

Funkhouser v. J. B. Preston Co., Inc.

No. 72

Submitted November 9, 1933

Decided December 4, 1933

290 U.S. 163


1. Section 480, New York Civil Practice Act, as amended, providing that interest shall be added to recoveries in actions for unliquidated damages caused by breach of contract, did not impair the obligation of an earlier contract which did not create an obligation not to demand such interest, either by its own terms or when read with the law applicable when it was made. P. 290 U. S. 166.

2. The purpose of the statute was to supply a definite, uniform rule of compensation for delay in settling unliquidated damages in lieu of the uncertain rules previously developed by judicial decision. Provision of the enlarged remedy was consistent with the contract here involved and cannot be regarded as an unreasonable exercise of legislative power. Pp. 290 U. S. 166-168.

Page 290 U. S. 164

3. Statutes supplying improved means for ascertaining the loss sustained through a breach of contract, to the end that the injured party may have full compensation, concern the procedure for enforcing the obligation of the contract. P. 290 U. S. 167.

4. The mere fact that such procedural legislation is retroactive does not imply a lack of due process or bring it in conflict with the contract clause of the Federal Constitution. P. 290 U. S. 167.

261 N.Y. 140, 184 N.E. 737, affirmed.

Appeal from a judgment entered on remittitur from the Court of Appeals of New York. It reversed that part of a judgment of the Appellate Division which disallowed interest on the verdict in an action for breach of contract.

Page 290 U. S. 165

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