Congress created the Emergency Court of Appeals in 1942 as part of the Emergency Price Control Act of 1942 (56 Stat. 23), legislation designed to stabilize prices and prohibit profiteering during World War II. The court was to be staffed by three or more district or circuit judges selected by the Chief Justice of the United States to hear challenges to regulations promulgated by the Office of Price Administration pursuant to the act. The act gave the court exclusive jurisdiction over such cases and prohibited other courts from hearing these challenges. The Supreme Court of the United States could then hear appeals from the court.
The Emergency Price Control Act and the court it established were initially designed to terminate on June 30, 1943, but were subsequently renewed several times. Congress also expanded the court’s jurisdiction to include review of agency decisions under the Housing and Rent Acts of 1948 (62 Stat. 93) and 1949 (63 Stat. 18) and the Defense Production Act of 1950 (64 Stat. 798). The court heard its final case in 1961 and was terminated on April 18, 1962.