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CALO V.

AJAX INTERNATIONAL 22 SCRA 996 (1968)


FACTS: Plaintiff Calo ordered from defendant Ajax International 1,200 ft of John Shaw wire
rope evidenced by Charge Order no 37071 for P3,420
1. Plaintiff alleged that when the said rope was delivered, it was 300 ft short. Plaintiff then
wrote a letter asking for complete delivery or account adjustment of the alleged
undelivered wire rope
2. Incidentally, Adolfo Benavides acquired the outstanding credit of Calo from Ajax.
Benavides filed a complaint against Calo before MTC Manila. A judgment by default was
entered and a writ of execution was issued against Calo. The case was later remanded for
further proceedings
3. In turn, Calo filed before CFI Agusan a complaint against Ajax asking for either complete
delivery of charge order no 37071 of that she be relieved from paying P855
4. Instead of filing an answer, Ajax moved for the dismissal of the case on the ground that
the subject matter involved was related to a pending case filed in Manila by Benavides.
The trial court sustained the motion and dismissed the case. Plaintiff filed MR (denied).
5. The dismissal of the case in CFI Agusan was premised on the theory that the
petitioners claim is a compulsory counterclaim to the case filed before MTC Manila
SSUE: WON the case filed in CFI Agusan is a compulsory counter-claim
HELD: No, the plaintiffs claim is not a compulsory counterclaim for the simple reason
that the amount thereof exceeds the jurisdiction of the municipal trial court. The rule that
a compulsory counterclaim not set up is barred, when applied to the municipal court,
presupposes that the amount is within the said courts jurisdiction. Otherwise, it would
result to an absurd situation where a claim must be filed within the MTC which is prohibited
from taking cognizance of, being beyond its jurisdiction.
Besides, the reason underlying the rule, which is to settle all related controversies in one sitting
only, is not obtained. Even if the counterclaim in excess of the amount cognizable by the inferior
court is set up, the defendant cannot obtain positive relief. The rules allow this only for the
defendant to prevent plaintiff from recovering from him. This means that should the court find
both plaintiffs complaint and the defendants counterclaim (for an amount exceeding said
courts jurisdiction) meritorious, it will simply dismiss the complaint on the ground that the
defendant has a bigger credit. Since the defendant still has to institute a separate action for the
remaining balance of his counterclaim, the previous litigation did not really settle all related
controversies.
Plaintiff Calo's claim of P12,000.00 not being a compulsory counterclaim in Civil Case No. VI93062, it need not be filed there. The pendency then of said civil case could not be pleaded in
abatement of Civil Case No. 860. Consequently, the lower court erred in dismissing plaintiff's
complaint.
DISPOSITIVE: The order of dismissal is reversed and the case is remanded for
further proceedings

LUNA V. MIRAFUENTE A.M. NO MTJ-05-1610 (2005)


NATURE: Judge Mirafuente of MTC Buenavista Marinduque, is charged with grave
misconduct and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service, violation of the rules on
summary procedure in special cases and gross ignorance of the law by petitioner Luna, arising
from the respondent judges act of giving due course to the belatedly filed and unverified answer
of the defendants in a complaint for unlawful detainer
FACTS: Petitioner Luna filed a complaint for unlawful detainer against spouses Sadiwa with
MTC Buenavista, Marinduque presided by judge Mirafuente
1. Spouses Sadiwa filed an unverified answer to the complaint 7 days beyond the
reglementary period of 10 days from the service of summons on them
a. Luna filed a motion for judgment invoking Sec 6 of the Revised Rules on Summary
Procedure; respondent judge denied the motion
b. Luna filed an urgent manifestation relative to the said order of the respondent judge
however the judge treated it as MR (denied)
2. Luna alleged that respondent judge should have motu proprio or on motion of the
plaintiffs rendered judgment as warranted by the facts stated in the complaint
following Sec 6 of the Revised Rule on Summary Procedure
3. Respondent judge claimed that his admission of the Sadiwas unverified and belatedly
filed answer was premised on the spirit of justice and fair play
a. The admission was proper since the delay was negligible, having only 4 days
(holiday)
b. The defendants mistakenly believed that reglementary period is 15 days, which is the
usual or common period to file an answer
c. The delay was also excusable as the spouses Sadiwa acted without the benefit of
legal assistance
d. Assuming that he erred in denying Lunas motion for judgment, a judge may not be
held administratively liable for every erroneous order or decision, for to hold
otherwise would render judicial office untenable. Besides, there is a judicial remedy
to correct the error
ISSUE: WON respondent judge erred in accepting an answer filed late
HELD: Yes.
For forcible entry and unlawful detainer cases involve perturbation of social order, which must
be restored as promptly as possible, such that technicalities or details of procedure which may
cause unnecessary delays should carefully be avoided. That explains why the Revised Rule on
Summary Procedure which governs ejectment, among other cases, lays down procedural
safeguards to guarantee expediency and speedy resolution. Sections 5 and 6 of the 1991 Revised
Rule on Summary Procedure provide:
Sec. 5. Answer. Within ten (10) days from service of summons, the defendant
shall file his answer to the complaint and serve a copy thereof on the plaintiff.
xxx

Sec. 6.Effect of failure to answer. Should the defendant fail to answer the
complaint within the period above provided, the court, motuproprio, or on
motion of the plaintiff, shall render judgment as may be warranted by the
facts alleged in the complaint and limited to what is prayed for
therein:Provided, however, That the court may in its discretion reduce the amount
of damages and attorneys fees claimed for being excessive or otherwise
unconscionable. This is without prejudice to the applicability of Section 4, Rule
18 of the Rules of Court, if there are two or more defendants. (Italics in the
original, emphasis and underscoring supplied)
The word shall in the above-quoted sections of the 1991 Revised Rule on Summary
Procedure underscores their mandatory character. Giving the provisions a directory
application would subvert the nature of the Rule and defeat its objective of expediting the
adjudication of the suits covered thereby. To admit a late answer is to put a premium on
dilatory maneuvers the very mischief that the Rule seeks to redress.
In the present case, respondent gave a liberal interpretation of the above-said Rule. Liberal
interpretation or construction of the law or rules, however, is not a free commodity that may be
availed of in all instances under the cloak of rendering justice. Liberality in the interpretation
and application of Rules applies only in proper cases and under justifiable causes and
circumstances. While it is true that litigation is not a game of technicalities, it is equally true that
every case must be prosecuted in accordance with the prescribed procedure to insure an orderly
and speedy administration of justice.
The court may order the correction of the pleading if the verification is lacking or act on the
pleading although it is not verified, if the attending circumstances are such that strict compliance
with the rules may be dispensed with in order that the end of justice may thereby be served.
DISPOSITIVE: Respondent judge is severely reprimanded with a warning that a repetition of
the same or similar acts shall be dealt with more strictly

PASCUAL V. JOVELLANOS 390 SCRA 333 (2002)


NATURE: A sworn administrative complaint filed by petitioner Pascual charging respondent
judge Jovellanos of MCTC Alcala, Pangasinan, with gross ignorance of the law, bias and
partiality, abuse of discretion and neglect of duty
FACTS: Complainant Pascual alleged that she filed a complaint for forcible entry against
Manaois. The complaint was dismissed without prejudice for being insufficient in some material
allegations. Pascual then filed a corrected complaint
1. Instead of filing an answer, Manaois filed a motion to strike out arguing that the new
allegations in the complaint are false. Since no answer was filed by Manaois, Pascual
moved for summary judgment.
2. Subsequently, respondent judge granted Manaois motion to strike out. Meanwhile,
Manaois started the construction of a building on the subject property. As a result,
Pascual filed an application for preliminary injunction. The respondent judge issued a
TRO and set a hearing on the injunction.
3. However, the respondent judge did not rule on Pascuals application for preliminary
injunction.
4. Complainant accused respondent judge of neglect of duty based on the following
grounds:
a. Defendant should have filed an answer instead of a motion to strike out. Despite this,
respondent judge granted the motion 120 days after its filing, thus defeating the
summary nature of the case
b. The order granting the motion to strike out is without basis because no hearing was
conducted
c. Respondent judge exhibited his bias and partiality in favor of Manaois in granting the
motion to strike out when he pointed that the corrected complaint is virtually a rehash
of the earlier complaint filed by Pascual
d. The motion for summary judgment filed by Pascual has not been acted upon
5. Respondent judge denied the allegations of Pascual and contended that the complaint
against him had no legal or factual basis and that Pascuals counsel would always file
administrative cases against him instead of appealing decisions before the proper court
6. OCA found that respondent judge failed to apply the rule on Summary Procedure which
he ought to be very familiar with considering it was a common procedure in municipal
courts
ISSUE: WON respondent judge failed to apply the rules in Summary Procedure
HELD: Yes.
It must be emphasized that rules of procedure have been formulated and promulgated by this
Court to ensure the speedy and efficient administration of justice. Failure to abide by these rules
undermines the wisdom behind them and diminishes respect for the rule of law. The Rule on
Summary Procedure was promulgated precisely to achieve an expeditious and inexpensive
determination of cases. Failure to observe the period within which to render a judgment

subjects the defaulting judge to administrative sanctions. For this reason, the Rule frowns
upon delays and expressly prohibits, altogether, the filing of motions for extension.
In this case, it is very clear that respondent lacks awareness of the relevant provisions on
ejectment. He has evidently been remiss in resolving the forcible entry case, pursuant to the
Revised Rules on Summary Procedure. Judgment should have been rendered based on the
allegations of the Complaint and the evidence presented therein, inasmuch as the defendant
failed to file his answer after the lapse of 10 days from the service of the summons. Sec 6 of the
Rule allows the trial court to render judgment, even motu proprio, upon failure of the defendant
to file an answer within the reglementary period. Moreover, under Sec 10 of the Rule, respondent
was duty-bound to render his decision within 30 days from receipt of the last affidavits and
position papers, or the expiration of the period for filing them. This notwithstanding, he has not
yet ruled on the Motion for Summary Judgment dated December 15, 1999, filed in accordance
with Sec 6 of the Rule on Summary Procedure.
Furthermore, respondent failed to apply these very basic rules when he granted the
defendant's Motion to Strike Out which was in reality a motion to dismiss, a prohibited
pleading. He cited Sec 12 of Rule 8 of the 1997 Rules on Civil Procedure as basis for this
ruling. In doing so, he committed an obvious mistake showing gross ignorance of the law.
This is because the civil case assigned to him is for forcible entry, which is governed by the
Rule on Summary Procedure.
Lack of knowledge of the Rules on Summary Procedure reflects a serious degree of
incompetence. When the law is so elementary, as in this case, not to be aware of it constitutes
gross ignorance of the law. A member of the bench must be constantly abreast of legal and
jurisprudential developments, bearing in mind that this learning process never ceases. It is
indispensable to the correct dispensation of justice.
DISPOSITIVE: Respondent judge is found guilty of gross ignorance of the law and is fined
P15,000. He is further warned that a repetition of this or similar offenses will be dealt with even
more severely.

SINGAPORE AIRLINES V. CA 243 SCRA 143 (1995)

NATURE:
FACTS: Sancho Rayos was an overseas contract worker who had renewed contract with Arabian
American Oil Company (Aramco). As part of Aramcos policy, its employees returning to Saudi
Arabia from Manila are allowed to claim reimbursement for amounts paid for excess baggage for
up to 50 kg as long as it is supported by receipt.
1. Rayos took a Singapore Airlines flight to report to his new assignment with a 50 kg
excess baggage. Aramco reimbursed the said amount upon presentation of the excess
baggage ticket
2. Subsequently, Rayos learned that he was one of the employees being investigated by
Aramco for fraudulent claims. As such, he asked his wife in Manila to seek a written
confirmation from SIA that he had indeed paid for the excess baggage. However SIA
informed Rayos wife that their records only show 3 kg were entered as excess baggage
3. SIA only issued the certification 4 months later, after investigation of the anomaly and
after Rayos threatened SIA with a lawsuit. Aramco did not renew Rayos employment
contract
4. Convinced that SIA was responsible for the non-renewal of his employment contract,
Rayos sued SIA for damages.
5. SIA claimed that it was not liable because the tampering was committed by its handling
agent, PAL. SIA then filed a third-party complaint against PAL.
6. PAL, in turn, countered that its personnel did not collect any charges for excess baggage;
it had no participation in the tampering of any excess baggage ticket and; if there had
been any tampering, it was committed by SIAs personnel
7. Manila RTC br-30 held in favor of Rayos and ordered the defendants to pay Rayos. On
the third-party complaint, the third-party defendant PAL was ordered to pay SIA whatever
it has paid Rayos
8. In its appeal, PAL claimed that Rayos had no valid claim against SIA because it was the
inefficiency of Rayos which led to the non-renewal of his contract with Aramco, and not
the alleged tampering of his excess baggage ticket. SIA argued that the only issue in the
said appeal is whether or not it was entitled to reimbursement from PAL pursuant to the
case of Firestone v. Tempongko
9. CA disagreed with SIAs contention and opined that SIAs answer to the complaint should
inure to the benefit of PAL, and the latter may challenge the lower courts findings
against SIA for the purpose of defeating SIAs claim against PAL and not for altering the
executed judgment against SIA
10. SIA argued that PAL cannot validly assail for the first time on appeal the trial courts
decision sustaining the validity of Rayos complaint against SIA if PLA did not raise this
issue in the lower court
ISSUE: WON SIA could validly claim reimbursement from PAL as the third-party defendant for
the damages it paid in favor of Rayos
HELD: Yes.
The third-party complaint is a procedural device whereby a "third party" who is neither a
party nor privy to the act or deed complained of by the plaintiff, may be brought into the

case with leave of court, by the defendant, who acts as third-party plaintiff to enforce
against such third-party defendant a right for contribution, indemnity, subrogation or any
other relief, in respect of the plaintiff's claim. The third-party complaint is actually
independent of and separate and distinct from the plaintiff's complaintWhen leave to file
the third-party complaint is properly granted, the Court renders in effect two judgments in the
same case, one on the plaintiff's complaint and the other on the third-party complaint. When he
finds favorably on both complaints, as in this case, he renders judgment on the principal
complaint in favor of plaintiff against defendant and renders another judgment on the third-party
complaint in favor of defendant as third-party plaintiff, ordering the third-party defendant to
reimburse the defendant whatever amount said defendant is ordered to pay plaintiff in the case.
While the third-party defendant would benefit from a victory by the third-party plaintiff against
the plaintiff, this is true only when the third-party plaintiff and third-party defendant have noncontradictory defenses. Here, the defendant and third-party defendant had no common defense
against the plaintiffs' complaint, and they were even blaming each other for the fiasco.
The trial court's decision, although adverse to SIA as defendant, made PAL ultimately
answerable for the judgment by ordering the latter to reimburse the former for the entire
monetary award. On appeal, PAL tried to exonerate itself by arguing that the Rayos had no valid
claim against SIA. From PAL's viewpoint, this seemed to be the only way to extricate itself from
a mess which the court a quo ascribed to it. This cannot, however, be allowed because it was
neither raised by SIA in its answer to the main complaint nor by PAL in its answer to the thirdparty complaint. The prudent thing that PAL should have done was to state in its answer to the
third-party complaint filed by SIA against it everything that it may conceivably interpose by way
of its defense, including specific denials of allegations in the main complaint which implicated it
along with SIA.
However, PAL is not solely liable for the satisfaction of the judgment in favor of Rayos. The
immediate cause of such non-renewal was SIA's delayed transmittal of the certification needed
by Rayos to prove his innocence to his employer. The effect of SIA's mishandling of Beatriz
Rayos' request became instantly apparent when her husband's contract was not renewed in spite
of his performance which was constantly "highly regarded" by the manager of Aramco's
equipment services department.
The non-renewal of Rayos employment contract was the natural and probable consequence of
the separate tortious acts of SIA and PAL. Under mandate of Art 2176 NCC, Rayos is entitled to
be compensated for such damages. Inasmuch as the responsibility of two or more persons, or
tort-feasors, liable for a quasi-delict is joint and several, and the sharing as between such solidary
debtors is pro-rata, it is but logical, fair, and equitable to require PAL to contribute to the amount
awarded to the Rayos spouses and already paid by SIA, instead of totally indemnifying the latter.
DISPOSITIVE: CA decision is reversed and a new one is entered ordering PAL to pay by way
of contribution, petitioner SIA 1/2 of the amount it actually paid to Rayos.