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Case Basics
Docket No. 
Michelin Tire Corporation
(Argued the cause for the petitioner)
(Argued the cause for the respondents)
Facts of the Case 

The Michelin Tire Corporation (MTC) operated a warehouse in Gwinnett County, Georgia, in which products imported from France and Nova Scotia were stored for later distribution. The County levied a nondiscriminatory ad valorem property tax on the goods (a percent of the property's value). MTC claimed that the contents of the warehouse were constitutionally free from state taxation because they were in their original containers. The county declared that the products were subject to the tax because they had been sorted and arranged for sale.


Did the Gwinnett County tax violate the Import-Export Clause by taxing goods that maintained the character of imports?

Decision: 8 votes for Wages, 0 vote(s) against
Legal provision: Article 1, Section 10, Paragraph 2: Export-Import Clause

The Court affirmed the decision of the Georgia Supreme Court, finding the tax to be valid. The Court stated that the Framers of the Constitution had adopted the Import-Export Clause to give the federal government a source of revenue and the superior position to regulate such foreign trade. This was to overcome the problems under the Articles of Confederation where states lacked uniformity in import regulation, burdening inter-state trade. The property tax was consistent with the Import-Export Clause because it did not (1) interfere with the Federal Government's regulation of foreign commerce (2) deprive the Federal Government of its exclusive right to revenues from imposts and duties on imports (3) interfere with the free flow of goods between the states. It taxed the use of the property and was not based on the origin of the goods.

Cite this Page
MICHELIN TIRE CORPORATION v. WAGES. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 29 August 2015. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/1970-1979/1975/1975_74_1396>.
MICHELIN TIRE CORPORATION v. WAGES, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1970-1979/1975/1975_74_1396 (last visited August 29, 2015).
"MICHELIN TIRE CORPORATION v. WAGES," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed August 29, 2015, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1970-1979/1975/1975_74_1396.