Nat'l Bank of Commerce v. City of New Bedford

CourtUnited States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
Writing for the CourtHOLMES
Citation155 Mass. 317,29 N.E. 532
Decision Date06 January 1892
PartiesNATIONAL BANK OF COMMERCE v. CITY OF NEW BEDFORD. ADAMS v. SAME.

155 Mass. 317
29 N.E. 532

NATIONAL BANK OF COMMERCE
v.
CITY OF NEW BEDFORD.

ADAMS
v.
SAME.

Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, Bristol.

Jan. 6, 1892.


Report from superior court, Bristol county; JOHN HOPKINS, Judge.

Proceedings by the National Bank of Commerce against the city of New Bedford to recover an abatement of taxes, and by one Adams against the same city for the same purpose.


Crapo, [155 Mass. 313]Clifford & Clifford, for petitioners.

T.F. Desmond, for respondent.


HOLMES, J.

The petitioner appealed to the superior court under St. 1890, c. 127, § 1, from the decision of the assessors of New Bedford refusing to abate any part of a tax upon its shares at a valuation of $120 per share of the par value of $100. The superior court sent the case to a commissioner to report the facts, and afterwards heard the case on the report [155 Mass. 314]without other evidence. It found as a fact from the report that for the purposes of taxation in this case the fair cash value of the shares at which they are required to be assessed by Pub.St. c. 13, § 8, was their market value as found by the commissioner, and ruled that upon the facts

[29 N.E. 533]

the assessors had no right to assess the stock upon the basis of the value as shown by the capital stock, the surplus fund, and the undivided profits, irrespective of the other evidence in the case, and that such assessment should be abated as to the excess above the fair cash value found to be the market value as first stated. This ruling was excepted to. Substantially the same point is presented another way by an exception to a refusal to rule that the assessors had a right to assess the stock upon the real worth of the property of the bank, all things considered.

The difference between the parties arises from findings by the commissioner that, assuming that the bank was to continue its business, the fair market value of the shares on May 1, 1890, was $102 per share, but that, assuming that it was to close its business, convert its assets into cash, and divide the cash among the shareholders, the fair value of each shareholder's interest was $126 per share, from which $6 is to be deducted for real estate. The discrepancy is accounted for by a loss of confidence in the management, and the fact that for some years the bank had paid low dividends.

The main question argued before us was whether the foregoing ruling and refusal were right. There is a strong argument that the respondent was not entitled to any ruling as to what the assessors had or had not a right to do, but that the only business of the superior court was to determine afresh on the facts and within the limits of its appellate action what a fair assessment would be, and what, if any, abatement is reasonable. Pub.St. c. 11, §§ 69, 71.

If, however, we are called on to go further, in order to see that the superior court did not adopt a false standard, we must notice that the court did not rule that under no circumstances would the assessors have had a right to assess on the basis mentioned, but only that it was wrong upon the facts found. One of the facts found is that in this case the fair cash value of the shares was their market value. Of course, the cash value of stock may be its market [155 Mass. 315]value, so that, putting the respondent's case at the highest, the petitioner must prevail upon the merits...

To continue reading

Request your trial
29 practice notes
  • Cent. Nat. Bank v. City of Lynn
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • March 12, 1927
    ...hardly can be more explicit. ‘Person’ as thus used includes a national bank. National Bank of Commerce v. New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 316, 29 N. E. 532. Said section 61 comprehends and is applicable to the statement on oath to be filed by the cashier of a national bank. While this was not c......
  • Martignette v. Sagamore Mfg. Co.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • December 17, 1959
    ...v. Boston Edison Co., 310 Mass. 674, 688-690, 39 N.E.2d 584, k93; National Bank of Commerce v. City of New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 29 N.E. 532; National Bank of Commerce v. City of New Bedford, 175 Mass. 257, 262, 56 N.E. We agree with the observations (Chicago Corp. v. Munds, 20 Del.Ch. 14......
  • Iowa Nat. Bank v. Stewart, Nos. 39843
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • September 26, 1930
    ...527;First National Bank of Watertown v. Eddy, 47 S. D. 297, 198 N. W. 554;National Bank of Commerce v. City of New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 29 N. E. 532, 534;State National Bank v. City of Memphis, 116 Tenn. 641, 94 S. W. 606, 7 L. R. A. (N. S.) 663, 8 Ann. Cas. 22;Home Savings Bank v. Morri......
  • Assessors of Quincy v. Boston Consol. Gas Co.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • May 26, 1941
    ...12 Metc. 211, 215;Moors v. Street Commissioners of Boston, 134 Mass. 431;National Bank of Commerce v. New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 29 N.E. 532. See Great Barrington v. County Commissioners, 112 Mass. 218;National Fireproofing Co. v. Revere, 217 Mass. 63, 104 N.E. 486. The list challenged in ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
29 cases
  • Cent. Nat. Bank v. City of Lynn
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • March 12, 1927
    ...hardly can be more explicit. ‘Person’ as thus used includes a national bank. National Bank of Commerce v. New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 316, 29 N. E. 532. Said section 61 comprehends and is applicable to the statement on oath to be filed by the cashier of a national bank. While this was not c......
  • Martignette v. Sagamore Mfg. Co.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • December 17, 1959
    ...v. Boston Edison Co., 310 Mass. 674, 688-690, 39 N.E.2d 584, k93; National Bank of Commerce v. City of New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 29 N.E. 532; National Bank of Commerce v. City of New Bedford, 175 Mass. 257, 262, 56 N.E. We agree with the observations (Chicago Corp. v. Munds, 20 Del.Ch. 14......
  • Iowa Nat. Bank v. Stewart, Nos. 39843
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • September 26, 1930
    ...527;First National Bank of Watertown v. Eddy, 47 S. D. 297, 198 N. W. 554;National Bank of Commerce v. City of New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 29 N. E. 532, 534;State National Bank v. City of Memphis, 116 Tenn. 641, 94 S. W. 606, 7 L. R. A. (N. S.) 663, 8 Ann. Cas. 22;Home Savings Bank v. Morri......
  • Assessors of Quincy v. Boston Consol. Gas Co.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • May 26, 1941
    ...12 Metc. 211, 215;Moors v. Street Commissioners of Boston, 134 Mass. 431;National Bank of Commerce v. New Bedford, 155 Mass. 313, 29 N.E. 532. See Great Barrington v. County Commissioners, 112 Mass. 218;National Fireproofing Co. v. Revere, 217 Mass. 63, 104 N.E. 486. The list challenged in ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT