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Cordak v. Reuben H. Donnelley Corp.

OPINION FILED SEPTEMBER 14, 1960.

EUGENE E. CORDAK, D/B/A A B DENTAL PLATE LABORATORY, ET AL., APPELLANTS,

v.

THE REUBEN H. DONNELLEY CORPORATION, APPELLEE. — (PEOPLE EX REL. ILLINOIS DENTAL SOCIETY ET AL., INTERVENORS-APPELLEES.)



APPEAL from the Superior Court of Cook County; the Hon. WALKER BUTLER, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE BRISTOW DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Plaintiffs, as dental laboratory technicians, appeal directly to this court from a decree of the superior court of Cook County finding the 1959 amendment to section 5a of the Dental Practice Act (Ill. Rev. Stat., 1959, chap. 91, par. 60a) to be constitutional, dissolving the temporary injunction previously issued and dismissing plaintiffs' complaint for want of equity.

Since the constitutional validity of the above-referred-to amendment to section 5a of the Illinois Dental Practice Act is directly involved in this case, the appeal is properly taken direct to this court. Ill. Rev. Stat., 1959, chap. 110, par. 75 (1)

There is no dispute as to the facts involved in this case and the issues presented are solely matters of law. Plaintiffs are each dental laboratory technicians, each engaged in their own trade and business of constructing and repairing, extraorally, prosthetic dentures, bridges, and other replacements for teeth or parts thereof. In June, 1959, plaintiff Cordak, d/b/a A B Dental Plate Laboratory, placed his order for directory representation in the 1960 edition of the Chicago Classified Telephone Directory published by the defendant, Donnelley Corporation, commonly called the "Red Book" which advertisement read as follows:

"A B Dental Plate Labtry Logan Square District A.B. CA 7-4060 2715 1/2 N. Milwaukee Lakeview District DI 8-5053 1932 1/2 W. Irving Pk. Rd. Specializing in Repairing Duplicating and Making of New Dentures Serving the Dental Profession Since 1919 Member Ind. Dent. Lab. Asso. 1932 1/2 W Irving Pk ........... DIversey 8-5053 2715 1/2 N Milwke .............. CApitol 7-4060"

In September of 1959 the other plaintiff, d/b/a Grand & Ashland Dental Laboratory, placed an order with the defendant for publication in the Chicago Red Book of an announcement reading as follows:

"Grand & Ashland Dental Laboratory Emergency Plate Repairs Immediate Service 1609 W. Grand Ave. Serving the Dental Profession since 1940 1609 W Grand Ave ................ CAnal 6-0678"

The defendant Donnelley Corporation refused and declined to print and publish each of said announcements so ordered by the plaintiffs, solely and entirely on the basis of the 1959 amendment to section 5a of the Illinois Dental Practice Act. Prior to such 1959 amendment the defendant Donnelley Corporation had accepted for publication the announcements contracted for by these plaintiffs as well as other dental laboratory technicians. Its refusal to publish the announcements above referred to is based on the fact that they contained more than name, address and telephone number of the dental technician.

Plaintiffs thereupon filed a complaint for declaratory judgment that the 1959 amendment to the Dental Practice Act was unconstitutional and void and further seeking to enjoin the defendant Donnelley Corporation from refusing to publish their announcements because of such amendment. A temporary injunction, after notice, was issued restraining the defendant Donnelley Corporation from refusing to publish plaintiffs' announcements in the 1960 Chicago Red Book. The Illinois State Dental Society and certain dentists, hereinafter referred to as intervenors, were given leave to intervene pursuant to an order limiting the issues to be adjudicated to the constitutionality of said amendment. The case was heard by the trial court sitting without a jury on an agreed statement of facts. The trial court in its decree found the amendment constitutional, dissolved the temporary injunction previously issued and dismissed plaintiffs' complaint for want of equity.

Plaintiffs in their complaint and in this court contend that the prohibition against advertising contained in the 1959 amendment to the Illinois Dental Practice Act violates both the United States constitution and the constitution of the State of Illinois in the following respects:

A. That it is an abridgement of the plaintiffs' right to speak freely within the first amendment to the United States constitution and deprives plaintiffs of the right freely to speak, write and publish on all subjects in violation of article II, section 4, of the Illinois constitution.

B. That it violates the fourteenth amendment to the United States constitution by depriving plaintiffs of their property without due process of law and by depriving them of equal protection of the law, and that it violates article II, section 2, of the Illinois constitution because:

1. It is arbitrary, capricious and unreasonable;

2. There is no relation to the evil sought to ...


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