Interstate Commerce Case


InterstateCommerce Case

InterstateCommerce: Heart of Atlanta Motel v United States

Thecase Heartof Atlanta Motel v. United Stateswas important because it affirmed the provision of the Civil RightsAct of 1964 by the United States Congress that business enterprisesof public accommodation cannot discriminate their guests on a racialbasis (U.SSupreme Court, 1964).The ruling in the case determined that the congress had the powers tolegislate over interstate commerce without the confinement ofcommerce regulation among the states. The case was important becauseit was seeking to determine whether people can be discriminated byprivate entities in terms of admission and services (Miller&amp Jentz, 2009).At the same time, the case was to determine whether the congress canpass laws that would control private businesses by preventing them todiscriminate guests on racial basis.

TheU.S Supreme Court developed the effects on “effects on interstatecommerce” test because it was anticipated that the states wouldwater down any efforts of the interstate commerce. The Supreme Courtanticipated that the states would be lenient in the regulation of theinterstate commerce(Mann &amp Roberts, 2012). Thiswas informed of the many court cases that had inconsistent holdingsto the extent at which states can intrude interstate commerce.Therefore, the Supreme Court established the test so that it caneffectuate a statute on public interest so that it can be upheld dueto its effect on the interstate commerce.

Mostcommerce is not considered “interstate commerce.” This is becauseinterstate commerce is any transaction that crosses the boundaries ofa state or more. According to Mannand Roberts (2012), commerceis only considered interstate if it involves more than one state orinvolves traffic that crosses one state and another. Therefore, ifany commerce is not found to be interstate commerce, the federalregulation of the congress may not be applicable.


Mann,R., &amp Roberts, B. (2012). Essentialsof Business Law and the Legal Environment.New York: Cengage Learning

Miller,R., &amp Jentz, G. (2009). CengageAdvantage Books: Fundamentals of Business Law: Excerpted Cases.New York: Cengage Learning

U.SSupreme Court, 1964, Heartof Atlanta Motel v. United States,379 U.S. 241, 85 S.Ct. 348, 13 L.Ed.2d 258, 1964 U.S. Lexis 2187(Supreme Court of the United States)