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Arizona Corp. Com'n v. Pacific Motor Trucking Co.

Supreme Court of Arizona

October 22, 1957

The ARIZONA CORPORATION COMMISSION and William T. Brooks, Mit Simms, and John H. Barry, as members of and constituting said Commission, Appellants,
v.
PACIFIC MOTOR TRUCKING COMPANY, a corporation, Appellee.

Page 563

[83 Ariz. 136] Robert Morrison, Atty. Gen., Gordon Aldrich, Asst. Atty. Gen., and W. Francis Wilson, Phoenix, for appellants.

Evans, Hull, Kitchel & Jenckes, and Earl H. Carrol, Phoenix, for appellee.

JOHNSON, Justice.

Plaintiff-appellee, Pacific Motor Trucking Company, instituted an action in the Superior Court against defendants-appellants, Corporation Commission of the State of Arizona, to vacate and set aside an order of the Commission. Judgment was rendered in favor of plaintiff, Pacific Motor Trucking Company, and defendants, Corporation Commission, filed a purported notice of appeal. A motion to dismiss the appeal was filed on the ground that it is an attempt to appeal from a non-appealable order, and did not comply with Rule 73(e), Rules of Civil Procedure, 16 A.R.S. A ruling on this motion, it appears to us, will be determinative of the appeal. It is a matter of considerable importance and we therefore believe we should depart from our ordinary custom of determining motions without written opinions.

The facts which are not in dispute reveal that the court, after a trial on the merits, determined that the plaintiff was entitled to the relief sought, and did on April 23, 1957, enter the following minute entry order:

'It is ordered, adjudged and decreed that that certain order of the Corporation Commission of the State of Arizona made and entered by said Corporation Commission on the 3rd day of August, 1955, in its opinion and order, Docket No. 1861-S-811, Decision No. 29148, be and the same is adjudged to be arbitrary, unreasonable, unlawful, and void, and the certificate of convenience and necessity issued by virtue of said opinion and order is contrary to law and void, and

'It is further ordered that said opinion and order of August 3, 1955, Decision No. 29148, and the certificate of public convenience and necessity issued by virtue thereof be and the same is annulled, vacated, and set aside.'

That thereafter on May 17, 1957, a formal written judgment, which had been served on counsel for the defendants, was signed and entered of record in the office of the Clerk of the Superior Court.

That on June 1, 1957, the defendants filed a notice of appeal to this court, which reads as follows:

[83 Ariz. 137] 'Notice is hereby given that the above-named defendant, Arizona Corporation Commission, et al, appeals to the Supreme Court of the State of Arizona from that certain Order made and entered in the above-entitled cause in the Superior Court of the State of Arizona, in and for the County of Maricopa on the 23rd day of April, 1957

Page 564

wherein defendants' opinion and Order, Docket No. 1861-S-811, Decision No. 29148, given on the 3rd day of August, 1955 was ordered annulled, vacated and set aside by the Superior Court.'

The defendants do not contend that the minute entry order of April 23, 1957, is an appealable order and it is apparent that it is not for the reason that it is not a final judgment, and under the provisions of Rule 58(a), Rules Civil Procedure, a formal written judgment was required. Consolidated Stage Co. v. Corporation Commission, 66 Ariz. 75, 182 P.2d 937.

It is fundamental that appeal is a matter of statutory privilege rather than a right. No one has a natural right to appeal from a decision of the Superior Court but appeal is statutory, and to give the Supreme Court jurisdiction, terms and requirements of statute must be strictly complied with. Barth v. Apache County, 18 Ariz. 439, 162 P. 62; Vol. 2, Am.Jur., Appeal & Error, section 6.

The sole question for our determination is whether the notice of appeal filed by the defendants is sufficient as an appeal from the judgment entered in this case on May 17, 1957, and meets the requirements of Rule 73(e), supra. Rule 73(e) reads in part as follows:

'Notice of appeal. The notice of appeal shall specify the parties taking the appeal and shall designate the judgment, order or ...


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