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II.

THE CONCEPT OF QUASI-DELICT


A. ELEMENTS
CHAPTER 2 > QUASI-DELICTS
Art. 2176.
Whoever by act or omission causes damage to
another, there being fault or negligence, is obliged to
pay for the damage done. Such fault or negligence, if
there is no pre-existing contractual relation between
the parties, is called a quasi-delict and is governed by
the provisions of this Chapter. (1902a)

BARREDO V GARCIA
BOCOBO; July 8, 1942
FACTS
- from CA, holding Fausto Barredo liable for damages for
death pf Faustino Garcia caused by negligence of Pedro
Fontanilla, a taxi driver employed by Fausto Barredo
- May 3, 1936 in road between Malabon and Navotas,
head-on collision between taxi of Malate Taxicab and
carretela guided by Pedro Dimapilis thereby causing
overturning of the carretela and the eventual death of
Garcia, 16-yo boy and one of the passengers
- Fontanilla convicted in CFI and affirmed by CA and
separate civil action is reserved
- Parents of Garcia filed action against Barredo as sole
proprietor of Malate Taxicab as employer of Fontanilla
- CFI and CA awarded damages bec Fontanillas
negligence apparent as he was driving on the wrong
side of the road and at a high speed
> no proof he exercised diligence of a good father of the
family as Barredo is careless in employing (selection and
supervision) Fontanilla who had been caught several
times for violation of Automobile Law and speeding
> CA applied A1903CC that makes inapplicable civil
liability arising from crime bec this is under obligations
arising from wrongful act or negligent acts or omissions
punishable by law
- Barredos defense is that his liability rests on RPC TF
liability only subsidiary and bec no civil action against
Fontanilla TF he too cannot be held responsible

ISSUE
WON parents of Garcia may bring separate civil action
against Barredo making him primarily liable and directly
responsible under A1903CC as employer of Fontanilla
HELD
YES
- There are two actions available for parents of Garcia.
One is under the A100RPC wherein the employer is only
subsidiarily liable for the damages arising from the
crime thereby first exhausting the properties of
Fontanilla. The other action is under A1903CC (quasidelict or culpa aquiliana) wherein as the negligent
employer of Fontanilla, Barredo is held primarily liable
subject to proving that he exercising diligence of a good
father of the family. The parents simply took the action
under the Civil Code as it is more practical to get
damages from the employer bec he has more money to
give than Fontanilla who is yet to serve his sentence.
Obiter
Difference bet Crime and Quasi-delict
1) crimes public interest; quasi-delict only private
interest
2) Penal code punishes or corrects criminal acts; Civil
Code by means of indemnification merely repairs the
damage
3) delicts are not as broad as quasi-delicts; crimes are
only punished if there is a penal law; quasi-delicts
include any kind of fault or negligence intervenes
NOTE: not all violations of penal law produce civil
responsibility
e.g. contravention of ordinances, violation of game
laws, infraction of rules of traffic when nobody is hurt
4) crime guilt beyond reasonable doubt; civil mere
preponderance of evidence
- Presumptions:
1) injury is caused by servant or employee, there
instantly arises presumption of negligence of master or
employer in selection, in supervision or both
2) presumption is juris tantum not juris et de jure TF
may be rebutted by proving exercise of diligence of a
good father of the family
- basis of civil law liability: not respondent superior bu
the relationship of pater familias
- motor accidents need of stressing and accentuating
the responsibility of owners of motor vehicles

ELCANO V HILL
77 SCRA 98
BARREDO; May 26, 1977
FACTS
- Reginald Hill, a minor yet married at the time of
occurrence, was criminally prosecuted for the killing of
Agapito Elcano (son of Pedro), and was acquitted for
lack of intent to kill, coupled with mistake.
- Pedro Elcano filed a complaint for recovery of
damages from Reginald and his father Atty Marvin. CFI
dismissed it.
ISSUES
1. WON the civil action for damages is
barred by the acquittal of Reginald in the criminal case
wherein the action for civil liability was not reversed
2. WON Article 2180 (2nd and last par) of the CC can be
applied against Atty. Hill, notwithstanding the fact that
at the time of the occurrence, Reginald, though a minor,
living with and getting subsistence from his father, was
already legally married
HELD
1. NO
-The acquittal of Reginal Hill in the criminal case has not
extinguished his liability for quasi-delict, hence that
acquittal is not a bar to the instant action against him.
-Barredo v Garcia (dual charactercivil and criminal
of fault or negligence as a source of obligation):
"The above case is pertinent because it shows that the
same act may come under both the Penal Code and the
Civil Code. In that case, the action of the agent was
unjustified and fraudulent and therefore could have
been the subject of a criminal action. And yet, it was
held to be also a proper subject of a civil action under
article 1902 of the Civil Code. It is also to be noted that
it was the employer and not the employee who was
being sued."
"It will be noticed that the defendant in the above case
could have been prosecuted in a criminal case because
his negligence causing the death of the child was
punishable by the Penal Code. Here is therefore a clear
instance of the same act of negligence being a proper
subject matter either of a criminal action with its
consequent civil liability arising from a crime or of an
entirely separate and independent civil action for fault
or negligence under article 1402 of the Civil Code. Thus,
in this jurisdiction, the separate individuality of a cuasidelito or culpa aquiliana under the Civil Code has been

fully and clearly recognized, even with regard to a


negligent act for which the wrongdoer could have been
prosecuted and convicted in a criminal case aria for
which, after un a conviction, he could have been sued
for this civil liability arising from his crime.
-Culpa aquiliana includes acts which are criminal in
character or in violation of a penal law, whether
voluntary or negligent.
-ART 1162: "Obligations derived from quasi-delicts shall
be governed by the provisions of Chapter 2, Title XVII of
this Book, (on quasi-delicts) and by special laws." More
precisely, Article 2177 of the new code provides:
"ART 277. Responsibility for fault or negligence under
the preceding article is entirely separate and distinct
from the civil liability arising front negligence under the
Penal Code. But the plaintiff cannot recover damages
twice for the same act or omission of the defendant."
- According to the Code Commission: "The foregoing
provision (Article 2177) through at first sight startling, is
not so novel or extraordinary when we consider the
exact nature of criminal and civil negligence. The former
is a violation of the criminal law, while the latter is a
'culpa aquilian' or quasi-delict, of ancient origin, having
always had its own foundation and individuality,
separate from criminal negligence. Such distinction
between criminal negligence and 'culpa extracontractual' or 'cuasi-delito' has been sustained by
decision of the Supreme Court of Spain and maintained
as clear, sound and perfectly tenable by Maura, an
outstanding Spanish jurist. Therefore, under the
proposed Article 2177, acquittal from an accusation of
criminal negligence, whether on reasonable doubt or
not, shall not be a bar to a subsequent civil action, not
for civil liability arising from criminal negligence, but for
damages due to a quasi-delict or 'culpa aquiliana'. But
said article forestalls a double recovery,"
- Although, again, this Article 2177 does seem to literally
refer to only acts of negligence, the same argument of
Justice Bacobo about construction that upholds "the
spirit that giveth life" rather than that which is literal
that killeth the intent of the lawmaker should be
observed in applying the same. And considering that me
preliminary chapter on human relations of the new Civil
Code definitely establishes the separability and
independence of liability in a civil action for acts
criminal in character (under Articles 29 to 12) from the
civil responsibility arising from crime fixed by Article 100
of the Revised Penal Code, and, in a sense, the Rules of
Court, under Sections 2 and 3 (c), Rule 111, contemplate
also the same separability, its "more congruent with
the spirit of law, equity and justice, and more in
harmony with modern progress", to hold, as We do
hold, that Article 2176, where it refers to "fault or

negligence," covers not only acts "not punishable by


law" but also acts criminal in character, whether
intentional and voluntary or negligent.
- Consequently, a separate civil action lies against the
offender in a criminal act, whether or not he is
criminally prosecuted and found guilty or acquitted,
provided that the offended party is not allowed, if he is
actually charged also criminally, to recover damages on
both scores, and would be entitled in such eventuality
only to the bigger award of the two, assuming the
awards made in the two cases vary.
- Briefly stated, We here hold, in reiteration of Garcia,
that culpa aquiliana includes voluntary and negligent
acts which may be punishable by law.
2. YES (but)
- Article 2180 applies to Atty. Hill notwithstanding the
emancipation by marriage of Reginald. (However,
inasmuch as it is evident that Reginald is now of age, as
a matter of equity, the liability of Atty. Hill has become
milling, subsidiary to that of his son.)
- While it is true that parental authority is terminated
upon emancipation of the child (Article 327, Civil Code),
and under Article 397, emancipation takes place "by the
marriage of the minor (child)", it is, however, also clear
that pursuant to Article 399, emancipation by marriage
of the minor is not really full or absolute. Thus
"(E)mancipation by marriage or by voluntary concession
shall terminate parental authority over the child's
person. It shall enable the minor to administer his
property as though he was of age, but he cannot
borrow money or alienate or encumber real property
without the consent of his father or mother, or
guardian. He can sue and be sued in court only with the
assistance of his father, mother or guardian."
- Under Article 2180, "(T)he obligation imposed by
article 2176 is demandable not only for one's own acts
or omissions, but also for those of persons for whom
one is responsible. The father and, in case of his death
or incapacity, the mother, are responsible. The father
and, in case of his death or incapacity, the mother, are
responsible for the damages caused by the minor
children who live in their company."
- In the instant case, it is not controverted that Reginald,
although married, was living with his father and getting
subsistence from him at the time of the occurrence in
question. Factually, therefore, Reginald was still
subservient to and dependent on his father, a situation
which is not unusual.
- It must be borne in mind that, according to Manresa,
the reason behind the joint and solidary liability of
parents with their offending child under Article 2180 is
that is the obligation of the parent to supervise their

minor children in order to prevent them from causing


damage to third persons.
- On the other hand, the clear implication of Article 399,
in providing that a minor emancipated by marriage may
not, nevertheless, sue or be sued without the assistance
of the parents, is that such emancipation does not carry
with it freedom to enter into transactions or do any act
that can give rise to judicial litigation. And surely, killing
someone else invites judicial action.

CINCO V CANONOY
90 SCRA 369
Melencio-Herrera; May 31, 1979
FACTS
- Cinco filed on Feb 25, 19701 a complaint for recovery
of damages on account of a vehicular accident involving
his automobile and a jeepney driven by Romeo Hilot
and operated by Valeriana Pepito and Carlos Pepito.
- Subsequently, a criminal case was filed against the
driver Romeo Hilot arising from the same accident.
- At the pre-trial in the civil case, counsel for private
respondents moved to suspend the civil action pending
the final determination of the criminal suit.
- The City Court of Mandaue ordered the suspension of
the civil case. Petitioners MFR having been denied, he
elevated the matter on Certiorari to the CFI Cebu.,
which in turn dismissed the petition.
Plaintiffs claims:
- it was the fault r negligence of the driver in the
operation of the jeepney owned by the Pepitos which
caused the collision.
- Damages were sustained by petitioner because of the
collision
- There was a direct causal connection between the
damages he suffered and the fault and negligence of
private respondents.
Respondents Comments:
- They observed due diligence in the selection and
supervision of employees, particularly of Romeo Hilot.
ISSUE: WON there can be an independent civil action
for damage to property during the pendency of the
criminal action
HELD
YES
- Liability being predicated on quasi-delict, the civil case
may proceed as a separate and independent civil action,
as specifically provided for in Art 2177 of the Civil Code.
- The separate and independent civil action for quasidelict is also clearly recognized in sec 2, Rule 111 of the
Rules of Court:
Sec 2. Independent civil action. In the cases
prvided for in Articles 31, 32, 33, 34 and 2177 of
the Civil Code f the Philippines, an independent
civil action entirely separate and distinct from the
criminal action, may be brought by the injured
party during the pendency of the criminal case,
provided the right is reserved as required in the
preceding section. Such civil action shall proceed

independently of the criminal prosecution, and


shall require only a preponderance of evidence.
- Petitioners cause of action is based on quasidelict. The concept of quasi-delict, as enunciated in
Art 2176 of the Civil Code, is so broad that in
includes not only injuries to persons but also
damage to property. It makes no distinction
between damage to persons on the one hand and
damage to property on the other. The word
damage is used in two concepts: the harm done
and reparation for the harm done. And with
respect to harm it is plain that it includes both
injuries to person and property since harm is not
limited to personal but also to property injuries.
DISPOSITION Writ of Certiorari granted.

BAKSH V CA (Gonzales)
219 SCRA 115
DAVIDE, JR; Feb.19, 1993

ISSUE
WON damages may be recovered for a breach of
promise to marry on the basis of Art.21 of the Civil Code

FACTS

HELD
1. YES
Ratio In a breach of promise to marry where the
woman is a victim of moral seduction, Art. 21 may be
applied.
Reasoning
- Where a mans promise to marry is in fact the
proximate cause of the acceptance of his love by a
woman and his representation to fulfill that promise
becomes the proximate cause of the giving of herself
unto him in sexual congress, proof that he had, in
reality, no intention of marrying her and that the
promise was only a subtle scheme or deceptive device
to entice or inveigle to accept him and to obtain her
consent to the sexual act, could justify the award of
damages pursuant to Art.21 not because of such
promise to marry but because of the fraud and deceit
behind it and the willful injury to her honor and
reputation which followed thereafter. It is essential
however, that such injury should have been committed
in a manner contrary to morals, good customs or public
policy.
- In the instant case, respondent Court found that it was
the petitioner's "fraudulent and deceptive protestations
of love for and promise to marry plaintiff that made her
surrender her virtue and womanhood to him and to live
with him on the honest and sincere belief that he would
keep said promise, and it was likewise these fraud and
deception on appellant's part that made plaintiff's
parents agree to their daughter's living-in with him
preparatory to their supposed marriage. In short, the
private respondent surrendered her virginity, the
cherished possession of every single Filipina, not
because of lust but because of moral seduction. The
petitioner could not be held liable for criminal seduction
punished under either Art.337 or Art.338 of the RPC
because the private respondent was above 18 years of
age at the time of the seduction.
- Moreover, it is the rule in this jurisdiction that
appellate courts will not disturb the trial court's findings
as to the credibility of witnesses, the latter court having
heard the witnesses and having had the opportunity to
observe closely their deportment and manner of
testifying, unless the trial court had plainly overlooked
facts of substance or value which, if considered, might
affect the result of the case. Petitioner has miserably
failed to convince Us that both the appellate and trial
courts had overlooked any fact of substance or value
which could alter the result of the case.

- Private respondent Marilou Gonzales (MG) filed a


complaint for damages against petitioner Gashem
Shookat Baksh for the alleged violation of their
agreement to get married.
**MGs allegations in the complaint:
- That she is a 22 yr. old Filipina, single, of good moral
character and respected reputation in her community.
- That Baksh is an Iranian citizen, residing in Dagupan,
and is an exchange student taking up medicine at the
Lyceum in Dagupan.
- That Baksh later courted and proposed to marry her.
MG accepted his love on the condition that they would
get married. They later agreed to get married at the end
of the school semester. Petitioner had visited MGs
parents to secure their approval of the marriage. Baksh
later forced MG to live with him. A week before the
filing of the complaint, petitioner started maltreating
her even threatening to kill her and as a result of such
maltreatment, she sustained injuries. A day before the
filing of the complaint, Baksh repudiated their marriage
agreement and asked her not to live with him anymore
and that he is already married to someone in Bacolod.
She prayed for payment for damages amounting to Php
45,000 plus additional costs.
- Baksh answered with a counterclaim, admitting only
the personal circumstances of the parties in the
complaint but denied the rest of the allegations. He
claimed that he never proposed marriage to or agreed
to be married; neither sought the consent of her
parents nor forced her to live in his apt.; did not
maltreat her but only told her to stop coming to his
place after having discovered that she stole his money
and passport. He also prayed for 25,000 as moral
damages plus misc. expenses.
- The RTC, applying Art. 21 CC decided in favor of
private respondent. Petitioner was thus ordered to pay
Php 20,000 as moral damages and 3,000 pesos attys.
fees plus litigation expenses. Petitioner appealed this
decision to respondent CA, contending that the trial
court erred in not dismissing the case for lack of factual
and legal basis and in ordering him to pay moral
damages, attys fees, etc.
- Respondent CA promulgated the challenged decision
affirming in toto the trial courts ruling which prompted
Baksh to file this petition for certiorari, raising the single
issue of WON Art. 21 applies to this case.

**Obiter: on Torts and Quasi-delicts


- The existing rule is that a breach of promise to marry
per se is not an actionable wrong. Congress deliberately
eliminated from the draft of the New Civil Code the
provisions that would have made it so. The reason
therefor is set forth in the report of the Senate
Committees on the Proposed Civil Code, from which We
quote:
The elimination of this chapter is proposed. That
breach of promise to marry is not actionable has been
definitely decided in the case of De Jesus vs. Syquia. The
history of breach of promise suits in the United States
and in England has shown that no other action lends
itself more readily to abuse by designing women and
unscrupulous men...
- This notwithstanding, the said Code contains a
provision, Article 21, which is designed to expand the
concept of torts or quasi-delict in this jurisdiction by
granting adequate legal remedy for the untold number
of moral wrongs which is impossible for human
foresight to specifically enumerate and punish in the
statute books.
- As the Code Commission itself stated in its Report:
But the Code Commission has gone farther than the
sphere of wrongs defined or determined by positive
law. Fully sensible that there are countless gaps in the
statutes, which leave so many victims of moral wrongs
helpless, even though they have actually suffered
material and moral injury, the Commission has deemed
it necessary, in the interest of justice, to incorporate in
the proposed Civil Code the following rule:
Art.21 Any person who wilfully causes loss or injury
to another in a manner that is contrary to morals, good
customs or public policy shall compensate the latter for
the damage.
An example will illustrate the purview of the
foregoing norm: 'A' seduces the nineteen-year old
daughter of 'X.' A promise of marriage either has not
been made, or can not be proved. The girl becomes
pregnant. Under the present laws, there is no crime, as
the girl is above 18 yrs of age. Neither can any civil
action for breach of promise of marriage be filed.
Therefore, though the grievous moral wrong has been
committed, and although the girl and her family have
suffered incalculable moral damage, she and her
parents cannot bring any action for damages. But under
the proposed article, she and her parents would have
such a right of action.
Thus at one stroke, the legislator, if the foregoing rule
is approved, would vouchsafe adequate legal remedy
for that untold number of moral wrongs which it is
impossible for human foresight to provide for
specifically in the statutes.

- Art.2176 CC, which defines a quasi-delict, is limited to


negligent acts or omissions and excludes the notion of
willfulness or intent. Quasi-delict, known in Spanish
legal treatises as culpa aquiliana, is a civil law concept
while torts is an Anglo-American or common law
concept. Torts is much broader than culpa aquiliana
because it includes not only negligence, but intentional
criminal acts as well such as assault and battery, false
imprisonment and deceit. In the general scheme of the
Philippine legal system envisioned by the Commission
responsible for drafting the New Civil Code, intentional
and malicious acts, with certain exceptions, are to be
governed by the Revised Penal Code while negligent
acts or omissions are to be covered by Art.2176 CC. In
between these opposite spectrums are injurious acts
which, in the absence of Art.21, would have been
beyond redress. Thus, Art.21 fills that vacuum. It is even
postulated that together with Articles 19 and 20 of the
Civil Code, Art.21 has greatly broadened the scope of
the law on civil wrongs; it has become much more
supple and adaptable than the Anglo-American law on
torts.
DISPOSITION
finding no reversible error in the
challenged decision, the instant petition is hereby
DENIED

DULAY VS CA
243 SCRA 220

Petitioner appealed the same to the Court of Appeals


but Court Appeals Eight Division affirmed the decision
of the Regional Trial Court.

FACTS:
On December 7, 1988, an altercation between Benigno
Torzuela and Atty. Napoleon Dulay occurred at the "Big
Bang Sa Alabang," Alabang Village, Muntinlupa as a
result of which Benigno Torzuela, the security guard on
duty at the said carnival, shot and killed Atty. Napoleon
Dulay. Herein petitioner Maria Benita A. Dulay, widow
of the deceased Napoleon Dulay, in her own behalf and
in behalf of her minor children, filed an action for
damages against Benigno Torzuela and herein private
respondents Safeguard Investigation and Security Co.,
Inc., ("SAFEGUARD") and/or Superguard Security Corp.
("SUPERGUARD"), alleged employers of defendant
Torzuela. Private respondent SUPERGUARD filed a
Motion to Dismiss on the ground that the complaint
does not state a valid cause of action. SUPERGUARD
claimed that Torzuela's act of shooting Dulay was
beyond the scope of his duties, and that since the
alleged act of shooting was committed with deliberate
intent (dolo), the civil liability therefor is governed by
Article 100 of the Revised Penal Code, which states: Art.
100. Civil liability of a person guilty of a felony. Every
person criminally liable for a felony is also civilly liable.
Respondent SUPERGUARD further alleged that a
complaint for damages based on negligence under
Article 2176 of the New Civil Code, such as the one filed
by petitioners, cannot lie, since the civil liability under
Article 2176 applies only to quasi-offenses under Article
365 of the Revised Penal Code. In addition, the private
respondent argued that petitioners' filing of the
complaint is premature considering that the conviction
of Torzuela in a criminal case is a condition sine qua non
for the employer's subsidiary liability. Respondent
SAFEGUARD also filed a motion praying that it be
excluded as defendant on the ground that defendant
Torzuela is not one of its employees Petitioners
opposed both motions, stating that their cause of action
against the private respondents is based on their
liability under Article 2180 of the New Civil Code, which
provides: Art. 2180. The obligation imposed by Article
2176 is demandable not only for one's own acts or
omissions, but also for those of persons for whom one
is responsible. Employers shall be liable for the damages
caused by their employees and household helpers
acting within the scope of their assigned tasks, even
though the former are not engaged in any business or
an industry. Respondent Judge Regino issued an order
granting SUPERGUARD'S motion to dismiss and
SAFEGUARD'S motion for exclusion as defendant.

ISSUE: Whether or not the civil action contemplated in


Article 2177 is not applicable to acts committed with
deliberate intent, but only applies to quasi-offenses
under Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code.
DECISION OF THE SUPREME COURT:
NO. Contrary to the theory of private respondents,
there is no justification for limiting the scope of Article
2176 of the Civil Code to acts or omissions resulting
from negligence. Well-entrenched is the doctrine that
article 2176 covers not only acts committed with
negligence, but also acts which are voluntary and
intentional. As far back as the definitive case of Elcano
v. Hill (77 SCRA 98 [1977]), this Court already held that: .
. . Article 2176, where it refers to "fault or negligence,"
covers not only acts "not punishable by law" but also
acts criminal in character; whether intentional and
voluntary or negligent. Consequently, a separate civil
action against the offender in a criminal act, whether or
not he is criminally prosecuted and found guilty or
acquitted, provided that the offended party is not
allowed, if he is actually charged also criminally, to
recover damages on both scores, and would be entitled
in such eventuality only to the bigger award of the two,
assuming the awards made in the two cases vary. In
other words, the extinction of civil liability referred to in
Par. (e) of Section 3, Rule 111, refers exclusively to civil
liability founded on Article 100 of the Revised Penal
Code, whereas the civil liability for the same act
considered as quasi-delict only and not as a crime is not
extinguished even by a declaration in the criminal case
that the criminal act charged has not happened or has
not been committed by the accused. Briefly stated, We
here hold, in reiteration of Garcia, that culpa aquiliana
includes voluntary and negligent acts which may be
punishable by law. (Emphasis supplied) The same
doctrine was echoed in the case of Andamo v.
Intermediate Appellate Court (191 SCRA 195 [1990]),
wherein the Court held: Article 2176, whenever it refers
to "fault or negligence," covers not only acts criminal in
character, whether intentional and voluntary or
negligent. Consequently, a civil action lies against the
offender in a criminal act, whether or not he is
prosecuted or found guilty or acquitted, provided that
the offended party is not allowed, (if the tortfeasor is
actually also charged criminally), to recover damages on
both scores, and would be entitled in such eventuality
only to the bigger award of the two, assuming the
awards made in the two cases vary. [citing Virata v.

Ochoa, 81 SCRA 472] (Emphasis supplied) Private


respondents submit that the word "intentional" in the
Andamo case is inaccurate obiter, and should be read as
"voluntary" since intent cannot be coupled with
negligence as defined by Article 365 of the Revised
Penal Code. In the absence of more substantial reasons,
this Court will not disturb the above doctrine on the
coverage of Article 2176. Private respondents also
contend that their liability is subsidiary under the
Revised Penal Code; and that they are not liable for
Torzuela's act which is beyond the scope of his duties as
a security guard. It having been established that the
instant action is not ex-delicto, petitioners may proceed
directly against Torzuela and the private respondents.
Under Article 2180 of the New Civil Code as
aforequoted, when an injury is caused by the negligence
of the employee, there instantly arises a presumption of
law that there was negligence on the part of the master
or employer either in the selection of the servant or
employee, or in supervision over him after selection or
both (Layugan v. Intermediate Appellate Court, 167
SCRA 363 [1988]). The liability of the employer under
Article 2180 is direct and immediate; it is not
conditioned upon prior recourse against the negligent
employee and a prior showing of the insolvency of such
employee (Kapalaran Bus Lines v. Coronado, 176 SCRA
792 [1989]). Therefore, it is incumbent upon the private
respondents to prove that they exercised the diligence
of a good father of a family in the selection and
supervision of their employee. Since Article 2176 covers
not only acts of negligence but also acts which are
intentional and voluntary, it was therefore erroneous
on the part of the trial court to dismiss petitioner's
complaint simply because it failed to make allegations
of attendant negligence attributable to private
respondents.

GARCIA V FLORIDO
52 SCRA 420
ANTONIO; AUGUST 31, 1973
NATURE
Appeal by certiorari from the decision of the Court of
First Instance of Misamis Occidental, dismissing
petitioners' action for damages against respondents,
Mactan Transit Co., Inc. and Pedro Tumala, "without
prejudice to refiling the said civil action after conviction
of the defendants in the criminal case filed by the Chief
of Police of Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte", and from
the order of said Court dated January 21, 1972, denying
petitioners' motion for reconsideration.
FACTS
- On August 4, 1971, petitioners, German C. Garcia,
Chief of the Misamis Occidental Hospital, together with
his wife, Luminosa L. Garcia, and Ester Francisco,
bookkeeper of said hospital, hired and boarded a PU car
with plate No. 241-8 G Ozamis 71 owned and operated
by respondent, Marcelino Inesin, and driven by
respondent, Ricardo Vayson, for a roundtrip from
Oroquieta City to Zamboanga City, for the purpose of
attending a conference of chiefs of government
hospitals, hospital administrative officers, and
bookkeepers of Regional Health Office No. 7 at
Zamboanga City.
- At about 9:30 a.m., while the PU car was negotiating a
slight curve on the national highway at kilometer 21 in
Barrio Guisukan, Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte, said
car collided with an oncoming passenger bus (No. 25)
with plate No. 77-4 W Z.N. 71 owned and operated by
the Mactan Transit Co., Inc. and driven by defendant,
Pedro Tumala. As a result of the aforesaid collision,
petitioners sustained various physical injuries which
necessitated
their
medical
treatment
and
hospitalization.
- Alleging that both drivers of the PU car and the
passenger bus were at the time of the accident driving
their respective vehicles at a fast clip, in a reckless,
grossly negligent and imprudent manner in gross
violation of traffic rules and without due regard to the
safety of the passengers aboard the PU car, petitioners,
German C. Garcia, Luminosa L. Garcia, and Ester
Francisco, filed on September 1, 1971 with respondent
Court of First Instance of Misamis Occidental an action
for damages (Civil Case No. 2850) against the private
respondents, owners and drivers, respectively, of the
PU car and the passenger bus that figured in the
collision, with prayer for preliminary attachment.

- The principal argument advanced by Mactan Inc. et. al


to in a motion to dismiss was that the petitioners had
no cause of action for on August 11, 1971, or 20 days
before the filing of the present action for damages,
respondent Pedro Tumala was charged in Criminal Case
No. 4960 of the Municipal Court of Sindangan,
Zamboanga del Norte, in a complaint filed by the Chief
of Police and that, with the filing of the aforesaid
criminal case, no civil action could be filed subsequent
thereto unless the criminal case has been finally
adjudicated, pursuant to Sec. 3 of Rule 111 of the Rules
of Court, and, therefore, the filing of the instant civil
action is premature, because the liability of the
employer is merely subsidiary and does not arise until
after final judgment has been rendered finding the
driver, Pedro Tumala, guilty of negligence; that Art. 33
of the New Civil Code, is not applicable because Art 33
applied only to the crimes of physical injuries or
homicide, not to the negligent act or imprudence of the
driver.
- The lower court sustained Mactan Inc. et. Al. and
dismissed the complaint
ISSUES
1. WON the lower court erred in dismissing the
complaint for damages on the ground that since no
express reservation was made by the complainants, the
civil aspect of the criminal case would have to be
determined only after the termination of the criminal
case
2. WON the lower court erred in saying that the action
is not based on quasi-delict since the allegations of the
complaint in culpa aquiliana must not be tainted by any
assertion of violation of law or traffic rules or
regulations and because of the prayer in the complaint
asking the Court to declare the defendants jointly and
severally liable for moral, compensatory and exemplary
damages.
HELD
1. YES
Ratio
An action based on quasi-delict may be
maintained independently from a criminal action. By
instituting a civil action based on a quasi-delict, a
complainant may be deemed to abandon his/her right
to press recovery for damages in the criminal case.
Reasoning
- In the case at bar, there is no question that petitioners
never intervened in the criminal action instituted by the
Chief of Police against respondent Pedro Tumala, much
less has the said criminal action been terminated either
by conviction or acquittal of said accused.

- It is, therefore, evident that by the institution of the


present civil action for damages, petitioners have in
effect abandoned their right to press recovery for
damages in the criminal case, and have opted instead to
recover them in the present civil case.
- As a result of this action of petitioners the civil liability
of private respondents to the former has ceased to be
involved in the criminal action. Undoubtedly an
offended party loses his right to intervene in the
prosecution of a criminal case, not only when he has
waived the civil action or expressly reserved his right to
institute, but also when he has actually instituted the
civil action. For by either of such actions his interest in
the criminal case has disappeared.
- As we have stated at the outset, the same negligent
act causing damages may produce a civil liability arising
from crime or create an action for quasi-delict or culpa
extracontractual. The former is a violation of the
criminal law, while the latter is a distinct and
independent negligence, having always had its own
foundation and individuality. Some legal writers are of
the view that in accordance with Article 31, the civil
action based upon quasi-delict may proceed
independently of the criminal proceeding for criminal
negligence and regardless of the result of the latter.
Hence, "the proviso in Section 2 of Rule 111 with
reference to . . . Articles 32, 33 and 34 of the Civil Code
is contrary to the letter and spirit of the said articles, for
these articles were drafted . . . and are intended to
constitute as exceptions to the general rule stated in
what is now Section 1 of Rule 111. The proviso, which is
procedural, may also be regarded as an unauthorized
amendment of substantive law, Articles 32, 33 and 34 of
the Civil Code, which do not provide for the reservation
required in the proviso."
- But in whatever way We view the institution of the
civil action for recovery of damages under quasi-delict
by petitioners, whether as one that should be
governed by the provisions of Section 2 of Rule 111 of
the Rules which require reservation by the injured
party considering that by the institution of the civil
action even before the commencement of the trial of
the criminal case, petitioners have thereby foreclosed
their right to intervene therein, or one where
reservation to file the civil action need not be made,
for the reason that the law itself (Article 33 of the Civil
Code) already makes the reservation and the failure of
the offended party to do so does not bar him from
bringing the action, under the peculiar circumstances
of the case, We find no legal justification for
respondent court's order of dismissal.
2. YES, because the action in fact satisfies the elements
of quasi-delict.

Ratio An action shall be deemed to be based on a


quasi-delict when all the essential averments under
Articles 2176-2194 of the New Civil Code are present,
namely:
a) act or omission of the private respondents;
b) presence of fault or negligence or the lack of due care
in the operation of the passenger bus No. 25 by
respondent Pedro Tumala resulting in the collision of
the bus with the passenger car;
c) physical injuries and other damages sustained by
petitioners as a result of the collision;
d) existence of direct causal connection between the
damage or prejudice and the fault or negligence of
private respondents; and
e) the absence of pre-existing contractual relations
between the parties.
Reasoning
- The circumstance that the complaint alleged that
respondents violated traffic rules in that the driver
drove the vehicle "at a fast clip in a reckless, grossly
negligent and imprudent manner in violation of traffic
rules and without due regard to the safety of the
passengers aboard the PU car" does not detract from
the nature and character of the action, as one based on
culpa aquiliana. The violation of traffic rules is merely
descriptive of the failure of said driver to observe for
the protection of the interests of others, that degree of
care, precaution and vigilance which the circumstances
justly demand, which failure resulted in the injury on
petitioners. Certainly excessive speed in violation of
traffic rules is a clear indication of negligence. Since the
same negligent act resulted in the filing of the criminal
action by the Chief of Police with the Municipal Court
(Criminal Case No. 4960) and the civil action by
petitioners, it is inevitable that the averments on the
drivers' negligence in both complaints would
substantially be the same. It should be emphasized that
the same negligent act causing damages may produce a
civil liability arising from a crime under Art. 100 of the
Revised Penal Code or create an action for quasi-delict
or culpa extra-contractual under Arts. 2176-2194 of the
New Civil Code. This distinction has been amply
explained in Barredo vs. Garcia, et all (73 Phil. 607, 620621).
- It is true that under Sec. 2 in relation to Sec. 1 of Rule
111 of the Revised Rules of Court which became
effective on January 1, 1964, in the cases provided for
by Articles 31, 33, 39 and 2177 of the Civil Code, an
independent civil action entirely separate and distinct
from the civil action, may be instituted by the injured
party during the pendency of the criminal case,
provided said party has reserved his right to institute it
separately, but it should be noted, however, that

neither Section 1 nor Section 2 of Rule 111 fixes a time


limit when such reservation shall be made.
SEPARATE OPINION
BARREDO [concur]
- Article 2176 and 2177 definitely create a civil liability
distinct and different from the civil action arising from
the offense of negligence under the Revised Penal Code.
Since Civil Case No. 2850 is predicated on the above civil
code articles and not on the civil liability imposed by the
Revised Penal Code, I cannot see why a reservation had
to be made in the criminal case. As to the specific
mention of Article 2177 in Section 2 of the Rule 111, it is
my considered view that the latter provision is
inoperative, it being substantive in character and is not
within the power of the Supreme Court to promulgate,
and even if it were not substantive but adjective, it
cannot stand because of its inconsistency with Article
2177, an enactment of the legislature superseding the
Rules of 1940.
- Besides, the actual filing of Civil Case No. 2850 should
be deemed as the reservation required, there being no
showing that prejudice could be caused by doing so.
- Accordingly, I concur in the judgment reversing the
order of dismissal of the trial court in order that Civil
Case No. 2850 may proceed, subject to the limitation
mentioned in the last sentence of Article 2177 of the
Civil Code, which means that of the two possible
judgments, the injured party is entitled exclusively to
the bigger one.

ANDAMO V IAC (Missionaries Of Our Lady Of La


Salette, Inc)
191 SCRA 195
FERNAN; November 6, 1990
NATURE
Petition for certiorari, prohibition and mandamus
FACTS
- Petitioner spouses Emmanuel and Natividad Andamo
are the owners of a parcel of land situated in Biga
(Biluso) Silang, Cavite which is adjacent to that of
private respondent, Missionaries of Our Lady of La
Salette, Inc., a religious corporation.
- Within the land of respondent corporation,
waterpaths and contrivances, including an artificial lake,
were constructed, which allegedly inundated and
eroded petitioners' land, caused a young man to drown,
damaged petitioners' crops and plants, washed away
costly fences, endangered the lives of petitioners and
their laborers during rainy and stormy seasons, and
exposed plants and other improvements to destruction.
- In July 1982, petitioners instituted a criminal action
against Efren Musngi, Orlando Sapuay and Rutillo
Mallillin, officers and directors of respondent
corporation, for destruction by means of inundation
under Article 324 of the Revised Penal Code.
- On February 22, 1983, petitioners filed a civil case for
damages with prayer for the issuance of a writ of
preliminary injunction against respondent corporation.
Hearings were conducted including ocular inspections
on the land.
- On April 26, 1984, the trial court issued an order
suspending further hearings in the civil case until after
judgment in the related Criminal Case. And later on
dismissed the Civil Case for lack of jurisdiction, as the
criminal case which was instituted ahead of the civil
case was still unresolved.The decision was based on
Section 3 (a), Rule III of the Rules of Court which
provides that "criminal and civil actions arising from the
same offense may be instituted separately, but after the
criminal action has been commenced the civil action
cannot be instituted until final judgment has been
rendered in the criminal action."
- Petitioners appealed from that order to the
Intermediate Appellate Court.
- On February 17, 1986, respondent Appellate Court
affirmed the order of the trial court. A motion for
reconsideration filed by petitioners was denied by the
Appellate Court .

ISSUE
WON a corporation, which has built through its agents,
waterpaths, water conductors and contrivances within
its land, thereby causing inundation and damage to an
adjacent land, can be held civilly liable for damages
under Articles 2176 and 2177 of the Civil Code on quasidelicts such that the resulting civil case can proceed
independently of the criminal case
HELD
Ratio YES. As held in In Azucena vs. Potenciano, in
quasi-delicts, "(t)he civil action is entirely independent
of the criminal case according to Articles 33 and 2177 of
the Civil Code. There can be no logical conclusion than
this, for to subordinate the civil action contemplated in
the said articles to the result of the criminal prosecution
whether it be conviction or acquittal would render
meaningless the independent character of the civil
action and the clear injunction in Article 31, that his
action may proceed independently of the criminal
proceedings and regardless of the result of the latter."
Reasoning
- A careful examination of the complaint shows that the
civil action is one under Articles 2176 and 2177 of the
Civil Code on quasi-delicts. All the elements of a quasidelict are present, to wit: (a) damages suffered by the
plaintiff, (b) fault or negligence of the defendant, or
some other person for whose acts he must respond;
and (c) the connection of cause and effect between the
fault or negligence of the defendant and the damages
incurred by the plaintiff.
- The waterpaths and contrivances built by respondent
corporation are alleged to have inundated the land of
petitioners. There is therefore, an assertion of a causal
connection between the act of building these
waterpaths and the damage sustained by petitioners.
Such action if proven constitutes fault or negligence
which may be the basis for the recovery of damages.
- In the case of Samson vs. Dionisio, the Court applied
Article 1902, now Article 2176 of the Civil Code and held
that "any person who without due authority constructs
a bank or dike, stopping the flow or communication
between a creek or a lake and a river, thereby causing
loss and damages to a third party who, like the rest of
the residents, is entitled to the use and enjoyment of
the stream or lake, shall be liable to the payment of an
indemnity for loss and damages to the injured party.
- While the property involved in the cited case belonged
to the public domain and the property subject of the
instant case is privately owned, the fact remains that
petitioners' complaint sufficiently alleges that
petitioners have sustained and will continue to sustain
damage due to the waterpaths and contrivances built

by respondent corporation. Indeed, the recitals of the


complaint, the alleged presence of damage to the
petitioners, the act or omission of respondent
corporation supposedly constituting fault or negligence,
and the causal connection between the act and the
damage, with no pre-existing contractual obligation
between the parties make a clear case of a quasi delict
or culpa aquiliana.
- It must be stressed that the use of one's property is
not without limitations. Article 431 of the Civil Code
provides that "the owner of a thing cannot make use
thereof in such a manner as to injure the rights of a
third person." SIC UTERE TUO UT ALIENUM NON
LAEDAS. Moreover, adjoining landowners have mutual
and reciprocal duties which require that each must use
his own land in a reasonable manner so as not to
infringe upon the rights and interests of others.
Although we recognize the right of an owner to build
structures on his land, such structures must be so
constructed and maintained using all reasonable care so
that they cannot be dangerous to adjoining landowners
and can withstand the usual and expected forces of
nature. If the structures cause injury or damage to an
adjoining landowner or a third person, the latter can
claim indemnification for the injury or damage suffered.
- Article 2176 1of the Civil Code imposes a civil liability
on a person for damage caused by his act or omission
constituting fault or negligence.
- Article 2176, whenever it refers to "fault or
negligence", covers not only acts "not punishable by
law" but also acts criminal in character, whether
intentional and voluntary or negligent. Consequently, a
separate civil action lies against the offender in a
criminal act, whether or not he is criminally prosecuted
and found guilty or acquitted, provided that the
offended party is not allowed, (if the tortfeasor is
actually charged also criminally), to recover damages on
both scores, and would be entitled in such eventuality
only to the bigger award of the two, assuming the
awards made in the two cases vary.
- The distinctness of quasi-delicta is shown in Article
21772 of the Civil Code. According to the Report of the
Code Commission "the foregoing provision though at
first sight startling, is not so novel or extraordinary
when we consider the exact nature of criminal and civil
negligence. The former is a violation of the criminal law,
while the latter is a distinct and independent
negligence, which is a "culpa aquiliana" or quasi-delict,
Article 2176. Whoever by act or omission causes damage to another, there being fault or negligence, is obliged to
pay for the damage done. Such fault or negligence, if there is no pre-existing contractual relation between the
parties, is called a quasi-delict and is governed by the provisions of this chapter.
2 Article 2177. Responsibility for fault or negligence under the preceding article is entirely separate and distinct from
the civil liability arising from negligence under the Penal Code. But the plaintiff cannot recover damages twice for
the same act or omission of the defendant.
1

of ancient origin, having always had its own foundation


and individuality, separate from criminal negligence.
Such distinction between criminal negligence and "culpa
extra-contractual" or "cuasi-delito" has been sustained
by decisions of the Supreme Court of Spain ... In the
case of Castillo vs. Court of Appeals, this Court held
that a quasi-delict or culpa aquiliana is a separate legal
institution under the Civil Code with a substantivity all
its own, and individuality that is entirely apart and
independent from a delict or crime a distinction
exists between the civil liability arising from a crime and
the responsibility for quasi-delicts or culpa extracontractual. The same negligence causing damages may
produce civil liability arising from a crime under the
Penal Code, or create an action for quasi-delicts or culpa
extra-contractual under the Civil Code. Therefore, the
acquittal or conviction in the criminal case is entirely
irrelevant in the civil case, unless, of course, in the
event of an acquittal where the court has declared that
the fact from which the civil action arose did not exist,
in which case the extinction of the criminal liability
would carry with it the extinction of the civil liability.

TAYLOR V MANILA ELECTRIC


16 PHIL 8
CARSON; March 22, 1910
NATURE
An action to recover damages for the loss of an eye and
other injuries, instituted by David Taylor, a minor, by his
father, his nearest relative.
FACTS
- The defendant is a foreign corporation engaged in the
operation of a street railway and an electric light system
in the city of Manila. The plaintiff, David Taylor, was at
the time when he received the injuries complained of,
15 years of age, the son of a mechanical engineer, more
mature than the average boy of his age, and having
considerable aptitude and training in mechanics.
- On the 30th of September, 1905, plaintiff, with a boy
named Manuel Claparols, about 12 years of age,
crossed the footbridge to the Isla del Provisor, for the
purpose of visiting one Murphy, an employee of the
defendant, who and promised to make them a cylinder
for a miniature engine. Finding on inquiry that Mr.
Murphy was not in his quarters, the boys, impelled
apparently by youthful curiosity and perhaps by the
unusual interest which both seem to have taken in
machinery, spent some time in wandering about the
company's premises.
- After watching the operation of the travelling crane
used in handling the defendant's coal, they walked
across the open space in the neighborhood of the place
where the company dumped in the cinders and ashes
from its furnaces. Here they found some twenty or
thirty brass fulminating caps scattered on the ground.
They are intended for use in the explosion of blasting
charges of dynamite, and have in themselves a
considerable explosive power. they opened one of the
caps with a knife, and finding that it was filled with a
yellowish substance they got matches, and David held
the cap while Manuel applied a lighted match to the
contents. An explosion followed, causing more or less
serious injuries to all three. Jessie, who when the boys
proposed putting a match to the contents of the cap,
became frightened and started to run away, received a
slight cut in the neck. Manuel had his hand burned and
wounded, and David was struck in the face by several
particles of the metal capsule, one of which injured his
right eye to such an extent as to the necessitate its
removal by the surgeons who were called in to care for
his wounds.
- The evidence does definitely and conclusively disclose
how the caps came to be on the defendant's premises,
nor how long they had been there when the boys found
them.

- No measures seems to have been adopted by the


defendant company to prohibit or prevent visitors from
entering and walking about its premises unattended,
when they felt disposed so to do.
- The trial court's decision, awarding damages to the
plaintiff, upon the provisions of article 1089 of the Civil
Code read together with articles 1902, 1903, and 1908
of that code.
ART. 1089 Obligations are created by law, by
contracts, by quasi-contracts, and illicit acts and
omissions or by those in which any kind of fault or
negligence occurs.
ART. 1902 A person who by an act or omission causes
damage to another when there is fault or negligence
shall be obliged to repair the damage so done.
ART. 1903 The obligation imposed by the preceding
article is demandable, not only for personal acts and
omissions, but also for those of the persons for whom
they should be responsible.
The father, and on his death or incapacity the mother,
is liable for the damages caused by the minors who
live with them.
Owners or directors of an establishment or enterprise
are equally liable for damages caused by their
employees in the service of the branches in which the
latter may be employed or on account of their duties.
The liability referred to in this article shall cease when
the persons mentioned therein prove that they
employed all the diligence of a good father of a family
to avoid the damage.
ART. 1908 The owners shall also be liable for the
damage caused
1 By the explosion of machines which may not have
been cared for with due diligence, and for kindling of
explosive substances which may not have been placed
in a safe and proper place.
- Counsel for the defendant and appellant rests his
appeal strictly upon his contention that the facts proven
at the trial do not established the liability of the
defendant company under the provisions of these
articles.
ISSUE
WON the defendants negligence is the proximate cause
of plaintiff's injuries
HELD
NO
- We are of opinion that under all the circumstances of
this case the negligence of the defendant in leaving the
caps exposed on its premises was not the proximate
cause of the injury received by the plaintiff.

- We agree with counsel for appellant that under the


Civil Code, as under the generally accepted doctrine in
the United States, the plaintiff in an action such as that
under consideration, in order to establish his right to a
recovery, must establish by competent evidence:
(1) Damages to the plaintiff.
(2) Negligence by act or omission of which defendant
personally, or some person for whose acts it must
respond, was guilty.
(3) The connection of cause and effect between the
negligence and the damage.
- These proposition are, of course, elementary, and do
not admit of discussion, the real difficulty arising in the
application of these principles to the particular facts
developed in the case under consideration.
- It is clear that the accident could not have happened
and not the fulminating caps been left exposed at the
point where they were found, or if their owner had
exercised due care in keeping them in an appropriate
place; but it is equally clear that plaintiff would not have
been injured had he not, for his own pleasure and
convenience, entered upon the defendant's premises,
and strolled around thereon without the express
permission of the defendant, and had he not picked up
and carried away the property of the defendant which
he found on its premises, and had he not thereafter
deliberately cut open one of the caps and applied a
match to its contents.
- But counsel for plaintiff contends that because of
plaintiff's youth and inexperience, his entry upon
defendant company's premises, and the intervention of
his action between the negligent act of defendant in
leaving the caps exposed on its premises and the
accident which resulted in his injury should not be held
to have contributed in any wise to the accident, which
should be deemed to be the direct result of defendant's
negligence in leaving the caps exposed at the place
where they were found by the plaintiff, and this latter
the proximate cause of the accident which occasioned
the injuries sustained by him.
- In support of his contention, counsel for plaintiff relies
on the doctrine laid down in many of the courts of last
resort in the United States in the cases known as the
"Torpedo" and "Turntable" cases, and the cases based
thereon.
- As laid down in Railroad Co. vs. Stout (17 Wall. (84 U.
S.), 657), wherein the principal question was whether a
railroad company was liable for in injury received by an
infant while upon its premises, from idle curiosity, or for
purposes of amusement, if such injury was, under
circumstances, attributable to the negligence of the
company), the principles on which these cases turn are
that "while a railroad company is not bound to the same

degree of care in regard to mere strangers who are


unlawfully upon its premises that it owes to passengers
conveyed by it, it is not exempt from responsibility to
such strangers for injuries arising from its negligence or
from its tortious acts;" and that "the conduct of an
infant of tender years is not to be judged by the same
rule which governs that of adult. While it is the general
rule in regard to an adult that to entitle him to recover
damages for an injury resulting from the fault or
negligence of another he must himself have been free
from fault, such is not the rule in regard to an infant of
tender years. The care and caution required of a child is
according to his maturity and capacity only, and this is
to be determined in each case by the circumstances of
the case."
- The doctrine of the case of Railroad Company vs. Stout
was vigorously controverted and sharply criticized in
several courts. But the doctrine of the case is controlling
in our jurisdiction.
- This conclusion is founded on reason, justice, and
necessity, and neither is contention that a man has a
right to do what will with his own property or that
children should be kept under the care of their parents
or guardians, so as to prevent their entering on the
premises of others is of sufficient weight to put in
doubt.
- But while we hold that the entry of the plaintiff upon
defendant's property without defendant's express
invitation or permission would not have relieved
defendant from responsibility for injuries incurred there
by plaintiff, without other fault on his part, if such injury
were attributable to the negligence of the defendant,
we are of opinion that under all the circumstances of
this case the negligence of the defendant in leaving the
caps exposed on its premises was not the proximate
cause of the injury received by the plaintiff, which
therefore was not, properly speaking, "attributable to
the negligence of the defendant," and, on the other
hand, we are satisfied that plaintiffs action in cutting
open the detonating cap and putting match to its
contents was the proximate cause of the explosion and
of the resultant injuries inflicted upon the plaintiff, and
that the defendant, therefore is not civilly responsible
for the injuries thus incurred. Plaintiff contends, upon
the authority of the Turntable and Torpedo cases, that
because of plaintiff's youth the intervention of his
action between the negligent act of the defendant in
leaving the caps exposed on its premises and the
explosion which resulted in his injury should not be held
to have contributed in any wise to the accident; and it is
because we can not agree with this proposition,
although we accept the doctrine of the Turntable and

Torpedo cases, that we have thought proper to discuss


and to consider that doctrine at length in this decision.
- In the case at bar, plaintiff at the time of the accident
was a well-grown youth of 15, more mature both
mentally and physically than the average boy of his age;
he had been to sea as a cabin boy; was able to earn
P2.50 a day as a mechanical draftsman thirty days after
the injury was incurred; and the record discloses
throughout that he was exceptionally well qualified to
take care of himself. The evidence of record leaves no
room for doubt that, despite his denials on the witness
stand, he well knew the explosive character of the cap
with which he was amusing himself.
- True, he may not have known and probably did not
know the precise nature of the explosion which might
be expected from the ignition of the contents of the
cap, and of course he did not anticipate the resultant
injuries which he incurred; but he well knew that a
more or less dangerous explosion might be expected
from his act, and yet he willfully, recklessly, and
knowingly produced the explosion. It would be going far
to say that "according to his maturity and capacity" he
exercised such and "care and caution" as might
reasonably be required of him, or that defendant or
anyone else should be held civilly responsible for
injuries incurred by him under such circumstances.
We are satisfied that the plaintiff in this case had
sufficient capacity and understanding to be sensible of
the danger to which he exposed himself when he put
the match to the contents of the cap; that he was sui
juris in the sense that his age and his experience
qualified him to understand and appreciate the
necessity for the exercise of that degree of caution
which would have avoided the injury which resulted
from his own deliberate act; and that the injury incurred
by him must be held to have been the direct and
immediate result of his own willful and reckless act, so
that while it may be true that these injuries would not
have been incurred but for the negligence act of the
defendant in leaving the caps exposed on its premises,
nevertheless plaintiff's own act was the proximate and
principal cause of the accident which inflicted the injury.

G.R. No.179446: January 10, 2011


LOADMASTERS CUSTOMS SERVICES, INC. Petitioner vs.
GLODEL BROKERAGE CORPORATION and R&B
INSURANCE CORPORATION Respondents
MENDOZA, J.:
FACTS:
Columbia Wire and Cable Corporation (Columbia)
insured a cargo of copper cathodes through R&B
Insurance Corporation (R&B). Columbia also engaged
the services of Glodel Brokerage Corporation (Glodel)
for the transport of the cargo to Columbia facilities.
Glodel then engaged the services of Loadmasters
Customs Services (Loadmasters) for the delivery of said
cargo to Columbia. Out of 12 trucks, owned by
Loadmasters, used to deliver the cargo of Columbia,
only 11 made it to their respective destinations.
/span>Columbia claimed the amount of loss from R&B,
which sued both Glodel and Loadmasters. The RTC ruled
in favor of R&B, but did not hold Loadmasters liable.
Both R&B and Glodelappealed the judgement. The
Court of Appeals modified the decision of the RTC and
ruled that Loadmasters, being the agent of Glodel, is
liable to Glodel for all the damages it might be required
to pay.
ISSUES: Whether or not Loadmasters is an agent of
Glodel, and whether or not it may be held liable under
the transaction between Glodel and Columbia.
HELD: Petition is partly meritorious
Civil Law: Glodel and Loadmasters are both common
carriers, as they hold out their carriage services to the
public. As such, under the Civil Code, they are mandated
to show extraordinary diligence in the conduct of
transport. In the case at bar, both Glodel and
Loadmasters were negligent as the cargo failed to reach
its destination. Loadmasters failed to ensure that its
employees would not tamper with the cargo. Glodel
failed to ensure that Loadmasters is sufficiently capable
of completing the delivery. Glodel and Loadmasters are
therefore joint tortfeasors and are solidarily liable to
R&B Insurance.
Loadmasters cannot be considered an agent of Glodel.
Loadmasters in no way represented itself as such, and in
the transfer of cargo, did not represent itself as doing
such in behalf of Glodel. In fact, Loadmasters is not
privy to the agreement between Glodel and Columbia.

It cannot be considered an agent of Glodel, and cannot


be held liable to Glodel.
Remedial Law: Though Glodel has, admittedly, a cause
of action against Loadmasters, it has effectively waived
it by failing to raise the cross-claim. The rules of
procedure states that compulsory counterclaims and
cross-claims not pleaded are deemed waived. They
cannot be raised for the first time on appeal.

which, if done maliciously, would have constituted a


light felony.chanrobles virtual law library
In the imposition of these penalties, the court shall
exercise their sound discretion, without regard to the
rules prescribed in Article sixty-four.chanrobles virtual
law library
The provisions contained in this article shall not be
applicable:

Art. 2177.

1. When the penalty provided for the offense is equal to


or lower than those provided in the first two paragraphs
of this article, in which case the court shall impose the
penalty next lower in degree than that which should be
imposed in the period which they may deem proper to
apply.

Responsibility for fault or negligence under the


preceding article is entirely separate and distinct from
the civil liability arising from negligence under the
Penal Code. But the plaintiff cannot recover damages
twice for the same act or omission of the defendant.
(n)

2. When, by imprudence or negligence and with


violation of the Automobile Law, to death of a person
shall be caused, in which case the defendant shall be
punished by prision correccional in its medium and
maximum periods.

B. DISTINCTIONS
1. QUASI-DELICT VS DELICT

Article 365, RPC


Art. 365. Imprudence and negligence.
Any person who, by reckless imprudence, shall commit
any act which, had it been intentional, would constitute
a grave felony, shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor
in its maximum period to prision correccional in its
medium period; if it would have constituted a less grave
felony, the penalty of arresto mayor in its minimum and
medium periods shall be imposed; if it would have
constituted a light felony, the penalty of arresto menor
in its maximum period shall be imposed.
Any person who, by simple imprudence or negligence,
shall commit an act which would otherwise constitute a
grave felony, shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor in
its medium and maximum periods; if it would have
constituted a less serious felony, the penalty of arresto
mayor in its minimum period shall be imposed.
When the execution of the act covered by this article
shall have only resulted in damage to the property of
another, the offender shall be punished by a fine
ranging from an amount equal to the value of said
damages to three times such value, but which shall in
no case be less than twenty-five pesos.
A fine not exceeding two hundred pesos and censure
shall be imposed upon any person who, by simple
imprudence or negligence, shall cause some wrong

Reckless imprudence consists in voluntary, but without


malice, doing or falling to do an act from which material
damage results by reason of inexcusable lack of
precaution on the part of the person performing of
failing to perform such act, taking into consideration his
employment or occupation, degree of intelligence,
physical condition and other circumstances regarding
persons, time and place.
Simple imprudence consists in the lack of precaution
displayed in those cases in which the damage
impending to be caused is not immediate nor the
danger clearly manifest.
The penalty next higher in degree to those provided for
in this article shall be imposed upon the offender who
fails to lend on the spot to the injured parties such help
as may be in this hand to give.

BARREDO V GARCIA
BOCOBO; July 8, 1942
PADILLA V CA (Vergara)
129 SCRA 558
GUTIERREZ; [date]
NATURE
Petition of rcertiorari to revies the decision of the Court
of Appeals
FACTS
- Petitioners, on or about February 8, 1964, went to the
public market to execute an alleged order of the Mayor
to clear the public market of stalls which were
considered as nuisance per se. The stall of one Antonio
Vergara was demolished pursuant to this order. In the
process however the stock in trade and certain furniture
of Vergara were lost and destroyed.
- The petitioners were found guilty of grave coercion
after trial at the CFI and were sentenced to five months
and one day imprisonment and ordered to pay fines.
- On appeal, the CA reversed the findings of the CFI and
acquitted the appellants based on reasonable doubt but
nonetheless ordered them to pay P9,600.00 as actual
damages. The decision of the CA was based on the fact
that the petitioners were charged with coercion when
they should have been more appropriately charged with
crime against person. Hence, the crime of grave
coercion was not proved in accordance with the law.
- The petitioner filed the appeal to the SC questioning
the grant of actual damages despite a no guilty verdict.
ISSUE
WON the CA committed a reversible error in requiring
the petitioners to pay civil indemnity to the
complainants after acquitting them from the criminal
charge
HELD
NO
- The SC, quoting Section 3 (C) of Rule 111 of the Rules
of Court and various jurisprudence including PNB vs
Catipon, De Guzman vs Alvia, held that extinction of the
penal action does not carry with it the extinction of the
civil, unless the extinction proceeds from a declaration
in the final judgment that the facts from which the civil
action might arise did not exist. In the case at bar, the
judgment of not guilty was based on reasonable doubt.
Since the standard of proof to be used in civil cases is
preponderance of evidence, the court express a finding
that the defendants offenses are civil in nature.

- The Court also tackled the provision of Article 29 of


the Civil Code to clarify whether a separate civil action is
required when the accused in a criminal prosecution is
acquitted on the ground that his guilt has not been
proved beyond reasonable doubt. The SC took the
position that the said provision merely emphasizes that
a civil action for damages is not precluded by an
acquittal for the same criminal act. The acquittal
extinguishes the criminal liability but not the civil
liability particularly if the finding is not guilty based on
reasonable ground.

CRUZ V CA (UMALI)
282 SCRA 188
FRANCISCO; 1997
NATURE
Civil action for damages in a medical malpractice suit.
FACTS
- Rowena Umali De Ocampo accompanied her mother
to the Perpetual Help Clinic and General Hospital. Prior
to March 22, 1991, Lydia was examined by the
petitioner who found a "myoma" in her uterus, and
scheduled her for a hysterectomy operation on March
23, 1991.
- Rowena and her mother slept in the clinic on the
evening of March 22, 1991 as the latter was to be
operated on the next day at 1:00 o'clock in the
afternoon. According to Rowena, she noticed that the
clinic was untidy and the window and the floor were
very dusty prompting her to ask the attendant for a rag
to wipe the window and the floor with. Because of the
untidy state of the clinic, Rowena tried to persuade her
mother not to proceed with the operation.
- The following day, Rowena asked the petitioner if the
operation could be postponed. The petitioner called
Lydia into her office and the two had a conversation.
Lydia then informed Rowena that the petitioner told her
that she must be operated on as scheduled.
- Rowena and her other relatives waited outside the
operating room while Lydia underwent operation. While
they were waiting, Dr. Ercillo went out of the operating
room and instructed them to buy tagamet ampules
which Rowena's sister immediately bought. About one
hour had passed when Dr. Ercillo came out again this
time to ask them to buy blood for Lydia. They bought
type "A" blood and the same was brought by the
attendant into the operating room.
- After the lapse of a few hours, the petitioner informed
them that the operation was finished. The operating
staff then went inside the petitioner's clinic to take their
snacks. Some thirty minutes after, Lydia was brought
out of the operating room in a stretcher and the
petitioner asked Rowena and the other relatives to buy
additional blood for Lydia. Unfortunately, they were not
able to comply with petitioner's order as there was no
more type "A" blood available in the blood bank.
- Thereafter, a person arrived to donate blood which
was later transfused to Lydia. Rowena then noticed her
mother, who was attached to an oxygen tank, gasping
for breath. Apparently the oxygen supply had run out
and Rowena's husband together with the driver of the
accused had to go to the San Pablo District Hospital to
get oxygen. Lydia was given the fresh supply of oxygen

as soon as it arrived.
- At around 10pm, she went into shock and her blood
pressure dropped to 60/50. Lydia's unstable condition
necessitated her transfer to the San Pablo District
Hospital so she could be connected to a respirator and
further examined. The transfer to the San Pablo City
District Hospital was without the prior consent of
Rowena nor of the other relatives present who found
out about the intended transfer only when an
ambulance arrived to take Lydia to the San Pablo
District Hospital. Rowena and her other relatives then
boarded a tricycle and followed the ambulance.
- Upon Lydia's arrival at the San Pablo District Hospital,
she was wheeled into the operating room and the
petitioner and Dr. Ercillo re-operated on her because
there was blood oozing from the abdominal incision.
The attending physicians summoned Dr. Bartolome
Angeles, head of the Obstetrics and Gynecology
Department of the San Pablo District Hospital. However,
when Dr. Angeles arrived, Lydia was already in shock
and possibly dead as her blood pressure was already
0/0. While petitioner was closing the abdominal wall,
the patient died. Her death certificate states "shock" as
the immediate cause of death and "Disseminated
Intravascular Coagulation (DIC)" as the antecedent
cause.
ISSUE
WON the circumstances are sufficient to sustain a
judgment of conviction against the petitioner for the
crime of reckless imprudence resulting in homicide
HELD
NO
- The elements of reckless imprudence are: (1) that the
offender does or fails to do an act; (2) that the doing or
the failure to do that act is voluntary; (3) that it be
without malice; (4) that material damage results from
the reckless imprudence; and (5) that there is
inexcusable lack of precaution on the part of the
offender, taking into consideration his employment or
occupation, degree of intelligence, physical condition,
and other circumstances regarding persons, time and
place.
- WON has committed an "inexcusable lack of
precaution" in the treatment of his patient is to be
determined according to the standard of care observed
by other members of the profession in good standing
under similar circumstances bearing in mind the
advanced state of the profession at the time of
treatment or the present state of medical science.
- For whether a physician or surgeon has exercised the
requisite degree of skill and care in the treatment of his

patient is, in the generality of cases, a matter of expert


opinion. The deference of courts to the expert opinion
of qualified physicians stems from its realization that
the latter possess unusual technical skills which laymen
in most instances are incapable of intelligently
evaluating. Expert testimony should have been offered
to prove that the circumstances cited by the courts
below are constitutive of conduct falling below the
standard of care employed by other physicians in good
standing when performing the same operation. It must
be remembered that when the qualifications of a
physician are admitted, as in the instant case, there is
an inevitable presumption that in proper cases he takes
the necessary precaution and employs the best of his
knowledge and skill in attending to his clients, unless
the contrary is sufficiently established. This
presumption is rebuttable by expert opinion which is so
sadly lacking in the case at bench.
- Even without expert testimony, that petitioner was
recklessly imprudent in the exercise of her duties as a
surgeon, no cogent proof exists that any of these
circumstances caused petitioner's death. Thus, the
absence of the fourth element of reckless imprudence:
that the injury to the person or property was a
consequence of the reckless imprudence.
- In litigations involving medical negligence, the plaintiff
has the burden of establishing appellant's negligence
and for a reasonable conclusion of negligence, there
must be proof of breach of duty on the part of the
surgeon as well as a casual connection of such breach
and the resulting death of his patient.

PHIL. RABBIT V PEOPLE


GR NO.147703
PANGANIBAN; April 14, 2004
NATURE
Petition for Review
FACTS
- Napoleon Macadangdang was found guilty and
convicted of the crime of reckless imprudence resulting
to triple homicide, multiple physical injuries and
damage to property and was sentenced to suffer the
penalty of 4 years, 9 months and 11 days to 6 years, and
to pay damages. But in the event the the accused
becoems insolvent, Phil. Rabbit will be held liable for
the civil liabilities. But admittedly, the accused jumped
bail and remained at large.
ISSUE
WON an employer, who dutifully participated in the
defense of its accused-employee, may appeal the
judgment of conviction independently of the accused
HELD
NO
- The accused cannot be accorded the right to appeal
unless they voluntarily submit to the jurisdiction of the
court or are otherwise arrested within 15 days from
notice of the judgment against them. While at large,
they cannot seek relief from the court, as they are
deemed to have waived the appeal. In the case before
us, the accused-employee has escaped and refused to
surrender to the proper authorities; thus, he is deemed
to have abandoned his appeal. Consequently, the
judgment against him has become final and executory.
- After a judgment has become final, vested rights are
acquired by the winning party. If the proper losing
party has the right to file an appeal within the
prescribed period, then the former has the correlative
right to enjoy the finality of the resolution of the case.
- In fact, petitioner admits that by helping the accusedemployee, it participated in the proceedings before the
RTC; thus, it cannot be said that the employer was
deprived of due process. It might have lost its right to
appeal, but it was not denied its day in court. In fact, it
can be said that by jumping bail, the accused-employee,
not the court, deprived petitioner of the right to appeal.
- On Subsidiary Liability Upon Finality of Judgment:
- Under Article 103 of the Revised Penal Code,
employers are subsidiarily liable for the adjudicated civil
liabilities of their employees in the event of the latters
insolvency.

- To allow employers to dispute the civil liability fixed in


a criminal case would enable them to amend, nullify or
defeat a final judgment rendered by a competent court.
By the same token, to allow them to appeal the final
criminal conviction of their employees without the
latters consent would also result in improperly
amending, nullifying or defeating the judgment.
- The decision convicting an employee in a criminal case
is binding and conclusive upon the employer not only
with regard to the formers civil liability, but also with
regard to its amount. The liability of an employer
cannot be separated from that of the employee.
DISPOSITION Petition is hereby DENIED, and the
assailed Resolutions AFFIRMED.
Costs against
petitioner.

PEOPLE V LIGON
152 SCRA 419
YAP; July 29, 1987
NATURE
Appeal from the judgment of the RTC Manila
FACTS
- February 17, 1986, RTC convicted Fernando Gabat, of
Robbery with Homicide and sentencing him to reclusion
perpetua where he robbed and killed Jose Rosales y
Ortiz, a seventeen-year old working student who was
earning his keep as a cigarette vendor. He was allegedly
robbed of his cigarette box containing cigarettes worth
P300.00 more or less. Rogelio Ligon,the co-accused,
was never apprehended and is still at large.
- October 23, 1983 - at about 6:10 p.m. Gabat, was
riding in a 1978 Volkswagen Kombi owned by his father
and driven by the other accused, Ligon which was
coming from Espaa Street going towards the direction
of Quiapo. At the intersection of Quezon Boulevard and
Lerma Street before turning left towards the underpass
at C.M. Recto Avenue, they stopped. While waiting,
Gabat beckoned a cigarette vendor, Rosales to buy
some cigarettes from him. Rosales approached the
Kombi and handed Gabat two sticks of cigarettes. While
this transaction was occurring, the traffic light changed
to green, and the Kombi driven by Rogelio Ligon
suddenly moved forward. As to what precisely
happened between Gabat and Rosales at the crucial
moment, and immediately thereafter, is the subject of
conflicting versions by the prosecution and the defense.
It is not controverted, however, that as the Kombi
continued to speed towards Quiapo, Rosales clung to
the window of the Kombi but apparently lost his grip
and fell down on the pavement. Rosales was rushed by
some bystanders to the Philippine General Hospital,
where he was treated for multiple physical injuries and
was confined thereat until his death on October 30,
1983.
- Following close behind (about 3 meters) the Kombi at
the time of the incident was a taxicab driven by Castillo.
He was traveling on the same lane in a slightly oblique
position. The Kombi did not stop after the victim fell
down on the pavement near the foot of the underpass,
Castillo pursued it as it sped towards Roxas Boulevard,
beeping his horn to make the driver stop. When they
reached the Luneta near the Rizal monument, Castillo
saw an owner-type jeep with two persons in it. He
sought their assistance in chasing the Kombi, telling
them "nakaaksidente ng tao." The two men in the jeep
joined the chase and at the intersection of Vito Cruz and

Roxas Boulevard, Castillo was able to overtake the


Kombi when the traffic light turned red. He immediately
blocked the Kombi while the jeep pulled up right behind
it. The two men on board the jeep turned out to be
police officers, Patrolmen Leonardo Pugao and Peter
Ignacio. They drew their guns and told the driver,
Rogelio Ligon, and his companion, Fernando Gabat, to
alight from the Kombi. It was found out that there was a
third person inside the Kombi, a certain Rodolfo
Primicias who was sleeping at the rear seat.
- The three were all brought by the police officers to the
Western Police District and turned over to Pfc. Fermin
Payuan. The taxicab driver, Prudencio Castillo, also went
along with them. Payuan also prepared a Traffic
Accident Report, dated October 23, 1983.6 Fernando
Gabat and Rodolfo Primicias were released early
morning the following day, but Rogelio Ligon was
detained and turned over to the City Fiscal's Office for
further investigation.
- December 6, 1983 - Investigating Fiscal Cantos, filed an
information against Rogelio Ligon charging him with
Homicide thru Reckless Imprudence.
- October 31, 1983 - an autopsy was conducted by the
medico-legal officer of NBI which stated the cause of
death of Rosales as "pneumonia hypostatic, bilateral,
secondary to traumatic injuries of the head."
- June 28, 1984 - Assistant Fiscal Cantos filed another
information against Rogelio Ligon and Fernando Gabat
for Robbery with Homicide based on a Supplemental
Affidavit of Prudencio Castillo and a joint affidavit of
Armando Espino and Romeo Castil, cigarette vendors,
who allegedly witnessed the incident . These affidavits
were already prepared and merely sworn to before
Fiscal Cantos on January 17, 1984.
- prosecution tried to establish, through the sole
testimony of the taxicab driver that Gabat grabbed the
box of cigarettes from Rosales and pried loose the
latter's hand from the window of the Kombi, resulting in
the latter falling down and hitting the pavement.
- The trial court gave full credence to the prosecution's
version, stating that there can be no doubt that Gabat
forcibly took or grabbed the cigarette box from Rosales
because, otherwise, there could be no reason for the
latter to run after the Kombi and hang on to its window.
The court also believed Castillo's testimony that Gabat
forcibly removed or pried off the right hand of Rosales
from the windowsill of the Kombi, otherwise, the latter
could not have fallen down, having already been able to
balance himself on the stepboard.
- On the other hand, the trial court dismissed as
incredible the testimony of Gabat that the cigarette
vendor placed the cigarette box on the windowsill of
the Kombi, holding it with his left hand, while he was

trying to get from his pocket the change for the 5peso
bill of Gabat. The court said that it is of common
knowledge that cigarette vendors plying their trade in
the streets do not let go of their cigarette box; no
vendor lets go of his precious box of cigarettes in order
to change a peso bill given by a customer.
ISSUE
WON the prosecutions set of facts should be given
credence
HELD
NO
- a careful review of the record shows that certain
material facts and circumstances had been overlooked
by the trial court which, if taken into account, would
alter the result of the case in that they would introduce
an element of reasonable doubt which would entitle the
accused to acquittal.
- While the prosecution witness, Castillo, may be a
disinterested witness with no motive, according to the
court a quo, "other than to see that justice be done," his
testimony, even if not tainted with bias, is not entirely
free from doubt because his observation of the event
could have been faulty or mistaken. The taxicab which
Castillo was driving was lower in height compared to
the Kombi in which Gabat was riding-a fact admitted by
Castillo at the trial.
- Judicial notice may also be taken of the fact that the
rear windshield of the 1978 Volkswagon Kombi is on the
upper portion, occupying approximately one-third (1/3)
of the rear end of the vehicle, thus making it visually
difficult for Castillo to observe clearly what transpired
inside the Kombi at the front end where Gabat was
seated. These are circumstances which must be taken
into consideration in evaluating Castillo's testimony as
to what exactly happened between Gabat and the
cigarette vendor during that crucial moment before the
latter fell down. As the taxicab was right behind the
Kombi, following it at a distance of about three meters,
Castillo's line of vision was partially obstructed by the
back part of the Kombi. His testimony that he saw
Gabat grab the cigarette box from Rosales and forcibly
pry loose the latter's hand from the windowsill of the
Kombi is thus subject to a reasonable doubt, specially
considering that this occurrence happened in just a
matter of seconds, and both vehicles during that time
were moving fast in the traffic.
- Considering the above circumstances, the Court is not
convinced with moral certainty that the guilt of the
accused Fernando Gabat has been established beyond
reasonable doubt. In our view, the quantum of proof
necessary to sustain Gabat's conviction of so serious a

crime as robbery with homicide has not been met in this


case. He is therefore entitled to acquittal on reasonable
doubt.
- However, it does not follow that a person who is not
criminally liable is also free from civil liability. While the
guilt of the accused in a criminal prosecution must be
established beyond reasonable doubt, only a
preponderance of evidence is required in a civil action
for damages.
- Article 29 of the Civil Code, which provides that the
acquittal of the accused on the ground that his guilt has
not been proved beyond reasonable doubt does not
necessarily exempt him from civil liability for the same
act or omission, has been explained by the Code
Commission as follows:
"The old rule that the acquittal of the accused in a
criminal case also releases him from civil liability is one
of the most serious flaws in the Philippine legal system.
It has given rise to numberless instances of miscarriage
of justice, where the acquittal was due to a reasonable
doubt in the mind of the court as to the guilt of the
accused. The reasoning followed is that inasmuch as the
civil responsibility is derived from the criminal offense,
when the latter is not proved, civil liability cannot be
demanded.
"This is one of those cases where confused thinking
leads to unfortunate and deplorable consequences.
Such reasoning fails to draw a clear line of demarcation
between criminal liability and civil responsibility, and to
determine the logical result of the distinction. The two
liabilities are separate and distinct from each other, One
affects the social order and the other, private rights.
One is for the punishment or correction of the offender
while the other is for reparation of damages suffered by
the aggrieved party. The two responsibilities are so
different from each other that article 1813 of the
present (Spanish) Civil Code reads thus: "There may be a
compromise upon the civil action arising from a crime;
but the public action for the imposition of the legal
penalty shall not thereby be extinguished." It is just and
proper that, for the purposes of the imprisonment of or
fine upon the accused, the offense should be proved
beyond reasonable doubt. But for the purpose of
indemnifying the complaining party, why should the
offense also be proved beyond reasonable doubt? Is not
the invasion or violation of every private right to be
proved only by a preponderance of evidence? Is the
right of the aggrieved person any less private because
the wrongful act is also punishable by the criminal law?
DISPOSITION Appellant acquitted for the crime of
robbery and homicide, but sentenced to indemnify the
heirs of Jose Rosales y Ortiz.

2. QUASI-DELICT VS BREACH OF CONTRACT


Articles 1170-1174, CC

Article 1170. Those who in the performance of


their obligations are guilty of fraud, negligence, or
delay, and those who in any manner contravene
the tenor thereof, are liable for damages. (1101)
Article 1171. Responsibility arising from fraud is
demandable in all obligations. Any waiver of an
action for future fraud is void. (1102a)
Article 1172. Responsibility arising from negligence
in the performance of every kind of obligation is also
demandable, but such liability may be regulated by
the courts, according to the circumstances. (1103)
Article 1173. The fault or negligence of the obligor
consists in the omission of that diligence which is
required by the nature of the obligation and
corresponds with the circumstances of the persons, of
the time and of the place. When negligence shows bad
faith, the provisions of articles 1171 and 2201,
paragraph 2, shall apply.
If the law or contract does not state the diligence
which is to be observed in the performance, that
which is expected of a good father of a family shall
be required. (1104a)
Article 1174. Except in cases expressly specified by the
law, or when it is otherwise declared by stipulation, or
when the nature of the obligation requires the
assumption of risk, no person shall be responsible for
those events which could not be foreseen, or which,
though foreseen, were inevitable. (1105a)
Article 2178, CC

Article 2178. The provisions of articles 1172 to 1174 are


also applicable to a quasi-delict. (n)

CANGCO V MANILA RAILROAD CO


38 Phil 768
FISHER; October 14, 1918
NATURE
An appeal from a judgment of the Court of First
Instance disallowing the claim of the plaintiff for P1,000
against the estate of the deceased James P. McElroy.
FACTS
- Jose Cangco, was employed by Manila Railroad
Company as clerk. He lived in San Mateo, Rizal, located
upon the line of the defendant railroad company; and in
coming daily by train to the company's office in the city
of Manila where he worked, he used a pass, supplied by
the company, which entitled him to ride upon the
company's trains free of charge.
- January 20, 1915, the plaintiff was returning home by
rail from his daily labors; and as the train drew up to the
station in San Mateo the plaintiff while making his exit
through the door, took his position upon the steps of
the coach.
- On the side of the train where passengers alight at the
San Mateo station there is a cement platform which
begins to rise with a moderate gradient some distance
away from the company's office and extends along in
front of said office for a distance sufficient to cover the
length of several coaches. As the train slowed down
another passenger, Emilio Zuniga, also an employee of
the railroad company, got off the same car, alighting
safely at the point where the platform begins to rise
from the level of the ground. When Jose Cangco
stepped off, one or both of his feet came in contact with
a sack of watermelons with the result that his feet
slipped from under him and he fell violently on the
platform. His body at once rolled from the platform and
was drawn under the moving car, where his right arm
was badly crushed and lacerated. After the plaintiff
alighted from the train the car moved forward possibly
six meters before it came to a full stop.
- The accident occurred on a dark night, and the train
station was lit dimly by a single light located some
distance away, objects on the platform where the
accident occurred were difficult to discern, especially to
a person emerging from a lighted car.
- The sack of melons on the platform is because it was
the customary season for harvesting these melons and a
large lot had been brought to the station for shipment
to the market. This row of sacks was so placed that
there was a space of only about two feet between the
sacks of melons and the edge of the platform; and it is
clear that the fall of the plaintiff was due to the fact that
his foot alighted upon one of these melons at the
moment he stepped upon the platform. His statement

that he failed to see these objects in the darkness is


readily to be credited.
- The plaintiff was drawn from under the car in an
unconscious condition, and with serious injuries. He was
immediately brought to a hospital where an
examination was made and his arm was amputated. The
plaintiff was then carried to another hospital where a
second operation was performed and the member was
again amputated higher up near the shoulder. Expenses
reached the sum of P790.25 in the form of medical and
surgical fees and for other expenses in connection with
the process of his curation.
- August 31, 1915, he instituted this proceeding in the
CFI Manilato recover damages of the defendant
company, founding his action upon the negligence of
the servants and employees of the defendant in placing
the sacks of melons upon the platform and in leaving
them so placed as to be a menace to the security of
passenger alighting from the company's trains. At the
hearing in the CFI, the trial judge, found the facts
substantially as above stated, and although negligence
was attributable to the defendant by reason of the fact
that the sacks of melons were so placed as to obstruct
passengers passing to and from the cars, nevertheless,
the plaintiff himself had failed to use due caution in
alighting from the coach and was therefore precluded
from recovering. Judgment was accordingly entered in
favor of the defendant company, and the plaintiff
appealed.
ISSUE: WON there was contributory negligence on the
part of the plaintiff
HELD
NO
Ratio In determining the question of contributory
negligence in performing such act - that is to say,
whether the passenger acted prudently or recklessly the age, sex, and physical condition of the passenger are
circumstances necessarily affecting the safety of the
passenger, and should be considered.
Reasoning
- The employees of the railroad company were guilty of
negligence in piling these sacks on the platform. Their
presence caused the plaintiff to fall as he alighted from
the train; and that they constituted an effective legal
cause of the injuries sustained by the plaintiff. It follows
that the defendant company is liable for the damage
unless recovery is barred by the plaintiff's own
contributory negligence.

- The foundation of the legal liability of the defendant is


the contract of carriage, and that the obligation to
respond for the damage which plaintiff has suffered
arises from the breach of that contract by reason of the
failure of defendant to exercise due care in its
performance.
- Its liability is direct and immediate, imposed by article
1903 of the Civil Code, which can be rebutted by proof
of the exercise of due care in their selection and
supervision. Article 1903 of the Civil Code is not
applicable to obligations arising ex contractu, but only
to extra-contractual obligations
- In commenting upon article 1093, Manresa clearly
points out the difference between "culpa, substantive
and independent, which of itself constitutes the source
of an obligation between persons not formerly
connected by any legal tie" and culpa considered as an
"accident in the performance of an obligation already
existing . . .."
- In the Rakes vs. Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific Co. the court
was made to rest squarely upon the proposition that
article 1903 is not applicable to acts of negligence which
constitute the breach of a contract.
- Under the Spanish law, in cases imposed upon
employers with respect to damages due to the
negligence of their employees to persons to whom they
are not bound by contract, such is not based upon the
principle of respondent superior - but upon the
principle announced in article 1902 which imposes
upon all persons who by their fault or negligence, do
injury to another, the obligation of making good the
damage caused.
- The liability arising from extra-contractual culpa is
always based upon a voluntary act or omission which,
without willful intent, but by mere negligence or
inattention, has caused damage to another. A master
who exercises all possible care in the selection of his
servant, taking into consideration the qualifications they
should possess for the discharge of the duties which it is
his purpose to confide to them, and directs them with
equal diligence, thereby performs his duty to third
persons to whom he is bound by no contractual ties,
and he incurs no liability whatever if, by reason of the
negligence of his servants, even within the scope of
their employment, such third persons suffer damage.
Article 1903 presumes negligence, but that presumption
is refutable.
- In Bahia vs. Litonjua and Leynes, an action is brought
upon the theory of the extra-contractual liability of the
defendant to respond for the damage caused by the
carelessness of his employee while acting within the
scope of his employment The Court, after citing the last
paragraph of article 1903 of the Civil Code, said: (1) That

when an injury is caused by the negligence of a servant


or employee there instantly arises a presumption of law
that there was negligence on the part of the master or
employer either in the selection of the servant or
employee, or in supervision over him after the
selection, or both; and (2) that presumption is juris
tantum and not juris et de jure, and consequently, may
be rebutted. It follows necessarily that if the employer
shows to the satisfaction of the court that in selection
and supervision he has exercised the care and diligence
of a good father of a family, the presumption is
overcome and he is relieved from liability.
- Every legal obligation must of necessity be extracontractual or contractual. Extra-contractual obligation
has its source in the breach or omission of those mutual
duties which civilized society imposes upon its
members, or which arise from these relations, other
than contractual, of certain members of society to
others, generally embraced in the concept of status. The
legal rights of each member of society constitute the
measure of the corresponding legal duties, which the
existence of those rights imposes upon all other
members of society. The breach of these general duties
whether due to willful intent or to mere inattention, if
productive of injury, gives rise to an obligation to
indemnify the injured party. The fundamental
distinction between obligations of this character and
those which arise from contract, rests upon the fact
that in cases of non-contractual obligation it is the
wrongful or negligent act or omission itself which
creates the vinculum juris, whereas in contractual
relations the vinculum exists independently of the
breach of the voluntary duty assumed by the parties
when entering into the contractual relation.
- The railroad company's defense involves the
assumption that even granting that the negligent
conduct of its servants in placing an obstruction upon
the platform was a breach of its contractual obligation
to maintain safe means of approaching and leaving its
trains, the direct and proximate cause of the injury
suffered by plaintiff was his own contributory
negligence in failing to wait until the train had come to a
complete stop before alighting. Under the doctrine of
comparative negligence announced in the Rakes case, if
the accident was caused by plaintiff's own negligence,
no liability is imposed upon defendant, whereas if the
accident was caused by defendant's negligence and
plaintiff's negligence merely contributed to his injury,
the damages should be apportioned. It is, therefore,
important to ascertain if defendant was in fact guilty of
negligence.

- The Court is of the opinion that the correct doctrine


relating to this subject is that expressed in Thompson's
work on Negligence:
"The test by which to determine whether the passenger
has been guilty of negligence in attempting to alight
from a moving railway train, is that of ordinary or
reasonable care. It is to be considered whether an
ordinarily prudent person, of the age, sex and condition
of the passenger, would have acted as the passenger
acted under the circumstances disclosed by the
evidence. This care has been defined to be, not the care
which may or should be used by the prudent man
generally, but the care which a man of ordinary
prudence would use under similar circumstances, to
avoid injury."
- In considering the probability of contributory
negligence on the part of the plaintiff the following
circumstances are to be noted: The company's platform
was constructed upon a level higher than that of the
roadbed and the surrounding ground. The distance from
the steps of the car to the spot where the alighting
passenger would place his feet on the platform was
thus reduced, thereby decreasing the risk incident to
stepping off. The cement platform also assured to the
passenger a stable and even surface on which to alight.
The plaintiff was possessed of the vigor and agility of
young manhood, and it was by no means so risky for
him to get off while the train was yet moving as the
same act would have been in an aged or feeble person.
The place was perfectly familiar to the plaintiff, as it was
his daily custom to get on and off the train at this
station. There could be no uncertainty in his mind with
regard either to the length of the step which he was
required to take or the character of the platform where
he was alighting. It is the Courts conclusion that the
conduct of the plaintiff in undertaking to alight while
the train was yet slightly under way was not
characterized by imprudence and that therefore he was
not guilty of contributory negligence.
DISPOSITION The decision of the lower court is
reversed, and judgment is hereby rendered plaintiff for
the sum of P3,290.25, and for the costs of both
instances.

FORES V MIRANDA
105 PHIL 266
REYES, J.B.L.; March 4, 1959
NATURE
Petition for review of the decision of the Court of
Appeals
FACTS
- Respondent was one of the passengers on a jeepney
driven by Eugenio Luga. While the vehicle was
descending the Sta. Mesa bridge at an excessive rate of
speed, the driver lost control thereof, causing it to
swerve and to hit the bridge wall. The accident occurred
on the morning of March 22, 1953. Five of the
passengers were injured, including the respondent who
suffered a fracture of the upper right humerus. He was
taken to the National Orthopedic Hospital for
treatment, and later was subjected to a series of
operations; the first on May 23, 1953, when wire loops
were wound around the broken bones and screwed into
place; a second, effected to insert a metal splint, and a
third one to remove such splint. At the time of the trial,
it appears that respondent had not yet recovered the
use of his right arm.
- The driver was charged with serious physical injuries
through reckless imprudence, and upon interposing a
plea of guilty was sentenced accordingly.
ISSUE
WON the defendant is entitled to moral damages
HELD
NO.
Ratio Moral damages are not recoverable in damage
actions predicated on a breach of the contract of
transportation, in view of Articles 2219 and 2220 of the
new Civil Code, which provide as follows:
"ART. 2219. Moral damages may be recovered in the
following and analogous cases:
(1) A criminal offense resulting in physical injuries;
(2) Quasi-delicts causing physical injuries;
xxx
xxx
xxx
ART. 2220. Willful injury to property may be a legal
ground for awarding moral damages if the court should
find that, under the circumstance, such damages are
justly due. The same rule applies to breaches of
contract where the defendant acted fraudulently or in
bad faith."
Reasoning
(a) In case of breach of contract (including one of
transportation) proof of bad faith or fraud (dolus), i.e.,

wanton or deliberately injurious conduct, is essential to


justify an award of moral damages; and
(b) That a breach of contract can not be considered
included in the description term "analogous cases" used
in Art. 2219; not only because Art. 2220 specifically
provides for the damages that are caused by contractual
breach, but because the definition of quasi-delict in Act.
2176 of the Code expressly excludes the cases where
there is a "preexisting contractual relation between the
parties."
"ART. 2176.
Whoever by act or omission caused
damage to another, there being fault or negligence, is
obliged to pay for the damage done. Such fault or
negligence, if there is no pro-existing contractual
relation between the parties, is called a quasi-delict and
is governed by the provision of this Chapter."
- In sum the rule is:
Delict (breach of contract)
Gen. Rule: no moral damages
- Reason: the advantageous position of a party suing a
carrier for breach of the contract of transportation
explains, to some extent, the limitation imposed by the
new Code on the amount of the recovery. The action for
breach of contract imposes on the defendant carrier a
presumption of liability upon mere proof of injury to the
passenger; that latter is relieved from the duty to
establish the fault of the carrier, or of his employees,
and the burden is placed on the carrier to prove the it
was due to an unforeseen event or to force majeure
(Cangco vs. Manila Railroad Co., 38 Phil., 768 777).
Moreover, the carrier, unlike in suits for quasi-delict,
may not escape liability by proving that it has exercised
due diligence in the selection and supervision of its
employees
- Exception: with moral damages if:
defendant acted fraudulently or in bad faith
result in the death of a passenger in which case
Article 1764 makes the common carrier expressly
subject to the rule of Art. 2206, that entitles the
spouse, descendants and ascendants of the
deceased passenger to "demand moral damages for
mental anguish by reason of the death of the
deceased"
- The difference in conditions, defenses and proof, as
well as the codal concept of quasi-delict as essentially
extra contractual negligence, compel us to differentiate
between action ex contractu, and actions quasi ex
delicto, and prevent us from viewing the action for
breach of contract as simultaneously embodying an
action on tort.
DISPOSITION The decision of the Court of Appeals is
modified by eliminating the award of P5.000.00 by way
of moral damages

FAR EAST BANK AND TRUST COMPANY V CA


241 SCRA 671 VITUG; February 23, 1995
NATURE: Petition for review
FACTS
- In October 1986, Luis A. Luna applied for, and was
accorded, a FAREASTCARD issued by petitioner Far East
Bank and Trust Company ("FEBTC") at its Pasig Branch.
Upon his request, the bank also issued a supplemental
card to Clarita S. Luna.
- In August 1988, Clarita lost her credit card. FEBTC was
forthwith informed. In order to replace the lost card,
Clarita submitted an affidavit of loss. In cases of this
nature, the bank's internal security procedures and
policy would appear to be- to meanwhile so record the
lost card, along with the principal card, as a "Hot Card"
or "Cancelled Card" in its master file.
- On 06 October 1988, Luis tendered a despedida lunch
for a close friend, a Fil-Am, and another guest at the
Bahia Rooftop Restaurant of the Hotel Intercon Manila.
To pay for the lunch, Luis presented his FAREASTCARD
to the attending waiter who promptly had it verified
through a telephone call to the bank's Credit Card
Department. Since the card was not honored, Luis was
forced to pay in cash the bill amounting to P588.13.
Naturally, Luis felt embarrassed by this incident.
- In a letter, dated 11 Oct. 1988, Luis Luna, through
counsel, demanded from FEBTC the payment of
damages. Adrian V. Festejo, a VP of the bank, expressed
the bank's apologies to Luis in his letter which stated
that: In cases when a card is reported to our office as
lost, FAREASTCARD undertakes the necessary action to
avert its unauthorized use to protect its cardholders.
However, it failed to inform him about its security
policy. Furthermore, an overzealous employee of the
Bank's Credit Card Department did not consider the
possibility that it may have been him who was
presenting the card at that time (for which reason, the
unfortunate incident occurred).
- Festejo also sent a letter to the Manager of the Bahia
Rooftop Restaurant to assure the latter that Luis was a
"very valued clients" of FEBTC. William Anthony King,
F&B Manager of the Intercon, wrote back to say that
the credibility of Luis had never been "in question." A
copy of this reply was sent to Luis by Festejo.
- Still evidently feeling aggrieved, Luis filed a complaint
for damages with the RTC of Pasig against FEBTC.
- On 30 March 1990, the RTC of Pasig ordered FEBTC to
pay private respondents (a) P300,000.00 moral
damages; (b) P50,000.00 exemplary damages; and (c)
P20,000.00 attorney's fees.
- On appeal to the Court of Appeals, the appellate court
affirmed the decision of the trial court.Its motion for

reconsideration having been denied by the appellate


court, FEBTC has come to this Court with this petition
for review.
ISSUE
WON the petitioner is entitled to moral and exemplary
damages
HELD
NO
- In culpa contractual, moral damages may be recovered
where the defendant is shown to have acted in bad
faith or with malice in the breach of the contract. The
Civil Code provides:
- Art. 2220. Willful injury to property may be a legal
ground for awarding moral damages if the court should
find that, under the circumstances, such damages are
justly due. The same rule applies to breaches of
contract where the defendant acted fraudulently or in
bad faith.
- Bad faith, in this context, includes gross, but not
simple, negligence. Exceptionally, in a contract of
carriage, moral damages are also allowed in case of
death of a passenger attributable to the fault (which is
presumed ) of the common carrier.
- Concededly, the bank was remiss in indeed neglecting
to personally inform Luis of his own card's cancellation.
Nothing in the findings of the trial court and the
appellate court, however, can sufficiently indicate any
deliberate intent on the part of FEBTC to cause harm to
private respondents. Neither could FEBTC's negligence
in failing to give personal notice to Luis be considered so
gross as to amount to malice or bad faith.
- Malice or bad faith implies a conscious and intentional
design to do a wrongful act for a dishonest purpose or
moral obliquity; it is different from the negative idea of
negligence in that malice or bad faith contemplates a
state of mind affirmatively operating with furtive design
or ill will.
- Article 21 states:
Art. 21. Any person who willfully causes loss or injury to
another in a manner that is contrary to morals, good
customs or public policy shall compensate the latter for
the damage.
- Article 21 of the Code, it should be observed,
contemplates a conscious act to cause harm. Thus, even
if we are to assume that the provision could properly
relate to a breach of contract, its application can be
warranted only when the defendant's disregard of his
contractual obligation is so deliberate as to approximate
a degree of misconduct certainly no less worse than
fraud or bad faith. Most importantly, Article 21 is a
mere declaration of a general principle in human

relations that clearly must, in any case, give way to the


specific provision of Article 2220 of the Civil Code
authorizing the grant of moral damages in culpa
contractual solely when the breach is due to fraud or
bad faith.
- Fores vs. Miranda explained with great clarity the
predominance that we should give to Article 2220 in
contractual relations; we quote:
Anent the moral damages ordered to be paid to the
respondent, the same must be discarded. We have
repeatedly ruled that moral damages are not
recoverable in damage actions predicated on a breach
of the contract of transportation, in view of Articles
2219 and 2220 of the new Civil Code, which provide as
follows:
- Art. 2219. Moral damages may be recovered in the
following and analogous cases:
(1) A criminal offense resulting in physical injuries;
(2) Quasi-delicts causing physical injuries;
xxx xxx xxx
- Art. 2220. Wilful injury to property may be a legal
ground for awarding moral damages if the court should
find that, under the circumstances, such damages are
justly due. The same rule applies to breaches of
contract where the defendant acted fraudulently or in
bad faith.
- By contrasting the provisions of these two articles it
immediately becomes apparent that:
(a) In case of breach of contract (including one of
transportation) proof of bad faith or fraud (dolus), i.e.,
wanton or deliberately injurious conduct, is essential to
justify an award of moral damages; and
(b) That a breach of contract can not be considered
included in the descriptive term "analogous cases" used
in Art. 2219; not only because Art. 2220 specifically
provides for the damages that are caused contractual
breach, but because the definition of quasi-delict in Art.
2176 of the Code expressly excludes the cases where
there is a "preexisitng contractual relations between the
parties."
- Art. 2176. Whoever by act or omission causes damage
to another, there being fault or negligence, is obliged to
pay for the damage done. Such fault or negligence, if
there is no pre-existing contractual relation between
the parties, is called a quasi-delict and is governed by
the provisions of this Chapter.
The exception to the basic rule of damages now under
consideration is a mishap resulting in the death of a
passenger, in which case Article 1764 makes the
common carrier expressly subject to the rule of Art.
2206, that entitles the spouse, descendants and
ascendants of the deceased passenger to "demand
moral damages for mental anguish by reason of the

death of the deceased. But the exceptional rule of Art.


1764 makes it all the more evident that where the
injured passenger does not die, moral damages are not
recoverable unless it is proved that the carrier was
guilty of malice or bad faith. We think it is clear that the
mere carelessness of the carrier's driver does not per se
constitute or justify an inference of malice or bad faith
on the part of the carrier; and in the case at bar there is
no other evidence of such malice to support the award
of moral damages by the Court of Appeals. To award
moral damages for breach of contract, therefore,
without proof of bad faith or malice on the part of the
defendant, as required by Art. 2220, would be to violate
the clear provisions of the law, and constitute
unwarranted judicial legislation.
xxx xxx xxx
- The distinction between fraud, bad faith or malice in
the sense of deliberate or wanton wrong doing and
negligence (as mere carelessness) is too fundamental in
our law to be ignored (Arts. 1170-1172); their
consequences being clearly differentiated by the Code.
- Art. 2201. In contracts and quasi-contracts, the
damages for which the obligor who acted in good faith
is liable shall be those that are the natural and probable
consequences of the breach of the obligation, and
which the parties have foreseen or could have
reasonably foreseen at the time the obligation was
constituted.
- In case of fraud, bad faith, malice or wanton attitude,
the obligor shall be responsible for all damages which
may be reasonably attributed to the non-performance
of the obligation.
- It is to be presumed, in the absence of statutory
provision to the contrary, that this difference was in the
mind of the lawmakers when in Art. 2220 they limited
recovery of moral damages to breaches of contract in
bad faith. It is true that negligence may be occasionally
so gross as to amount to malice; but the fact must be
shown in evidence, and a carrier's bad faith is not to be
lightly inferred from a mere finding that the contract
was breached through negligence of the carrier's
employees.
- The Court has not in the process overlooked another
rule that a quasi-delict can be the cause for breaching a
contract that might thereby permit the application of
applicable principles on tort even where there is a preexisting contract between the plaintiff and the
defendant This doctrine, unfortunately, cannot improve
private respondents' case for it can aptly govern only
where the act or omission complained of would
constitute an actionable tort independently of the
contract. The test (whether a quasi-delict can be
deemed to underlie the breach of a contract) can be

stated thusly: Where, without a pre-existing contract


between two parties, an act or omission can
nonetheless amount to an actionable tort by itself, the
fact that the parties are contractually bound is no bar to
the application of quasi-delict provisions to the case.
Here, private respondents' damage claim is predicated
solely on their contractual relationship; without such
agreement, the act or omission complained of cannot
by itself be held to stand as a separate cause of action
or as an independent actionable tort.
- Exemplary or corrective damages, in turn, are
intended to serve as an example or as correction for the
public good in addition to moral, temperate, liquidated
or compensatory damages (Art. 2229, Civil Code. In
criminal offenses, exemplary damages are imposed
when the crime is committed with one or more
aggravating circumstances (Art. 2230, Civil Code). In
quasi-delicts, such damages are granted if the
defendant is shown to have been so guilty of gross
negligence as to approximate malice. In contracts and
quasi-contracts, the court may award exemplary
damages if the defendant is found to have acted in a
wanton, fraudulent, reckless, oppressive, or malevolent
manner (Art. 2232, Civil Code).
- Given the above premises and the factual
circumstances here obtaining, it would also be just as
arduous to sustain the exemplary damages granted by
the courts below.
- Nevertheless, the bank's failure, even perhaps
inadvertent, to honor its credit card issued to private
respondent Luis should entitle him to recover a
measure of damages sanctioned under Article 2221 of
the Civil Code providing thusly:
- Art. 2221. Nominal damages are adjudicated in order
that a right of the plaintiff, which has been violated or
invaded by the defendant, may be vindicated or
recognized, and not for the purpose of indemnifying the
plaintiff for any loss suffered by him.
- Reasonable attorney's fees may be recovered where
the court deems such recovery to be just and equitable
(Art. 2208, Civil Code). We see no issue of sound
discretion on the part of the appellate court in allowing
the award thereof by the trial court.
DISPOSITION The appealed decision is MODIFIED by
deleting the award of moral and exemplary damages to
private respondents; in its stead, petitioner is ordered
to pay private respondent Luis A. Luna an amount of
P5,000.00 by way of nominal damages. In all other
respects, the appealed decision is AFFIRMED.

AIR FRANCE V CA (Carrascoso, Et. Al)


18 SCRA 155 SANCHEZ; September 28, 1966
NATURE
PETITION for review by certiorari of a decision of the
Court of Appeals.
FACTS
- Carrascoso, a civil engineer, left Manila for Lourdes w/
48 other Filipino pilgrims. Air France, through PAL,
issued plaintiff a first class round trip airplane ticket
from Manila to Rome. From Manila to Bangkok,
Carrascoso traveled in first class but at Bangkok, the
Manager of the defendant airline forced plaintiff to
vacate the 'first class' seat that he was occupying
because, in the words of the witness Ernesto G. Cuento,
there was a 'white man', who, the Manager alleged,
had a 'better right' to the seat. When asked to vacate
his 'first class' seat, the plaintiff, as was to be
expected, refused, and told defendant's Manager that
his seat would be taken over his dead body; a
commotion ensued, and, according to said Ernesto G.
Cuento, many of the Filipino passengers got nervous in
the tourist class; when they found out that Mr.
Carrascoso was having a hot discussion with the white
man [manager], they came all across to Mr. Carrascoso
and pacified Mr. Carrascoso to give his seat to the
'white man; and plaintiff reluctantly gave his 'first class'
seat in the plane."
- both TC and CA decided in favor of Carrascoso
ISSUES
Procedural
1. WON the CA failed to make a complete findings of
fact on all the issues properly laid before it, and if such,
WON the Court could review the questions of fact
Substantive
2. WON Carrascoso was entitled to the first class seat
he claims, as proved by written documents (tickets)
3. WON Carrascoso was entitled to moral damages,
when his action is planted upon breach of contract and
thus, there must be an averment of fraud or bad faith
which the CA allegedly failed to find
4. WON moral damages could be recovered from Air
France, granted that their employee was accused of the
tortuous act
5. WON damages are proper in a breach contract
6. WON the transcribed testimony of Carrascoso
regarding the account made by the air-carriers purser is
admissible in evidence as hearsay
7. WON Carrascoso was entitled to exemplary damages
8. WON Carrascoso was entitled to attorneys fees
9. WON the amounts awarded to Carrascoso was
excessive

HELD
1. NO, NO
Ratio A decision is not to be so clogged with details such
that prolixity, if not confusion, may result. So long as the
decision of the Court of Appeals, contains the necessary
facts to warrant its conclusions, it. is no error for said
court to withhold therefrom "any specific finding of
facts with respect to the evidence for the defense"."The
mere failure to specify (in the decision) the contentions
of the appellant and the reasons for refusing to believe
them is not sufficient to hold the same contrary to the
requirements of the provisions of law and the
Constitution"; "only questions of law may be raised" in
an appeal by certiorari from a judgment of the Court of
Appeals.
Obiter.
- Constitution mandates that a judgment determining
the merits of the case shall state "clearly and distinctly
the facts and the law on which it is based" and that
"Every decision of the Court of Appeals shall contain
complete findings of fact on all issues properly raised
before".xxx The law, however, solely insists that a
decision state the "essential ultimate facts" upon which
the court's conclusion is drawn.
- FINDINGS OF FACT: "the written statement of the
ultimate facts as found by the court and essential to
support the decision and judgment rendered
thereon".16 They consist of the court's "conclusions
with respect to the determinative facts in issue"
- QUESTION OF LAW: one which does not call for an
examination of the probative value of the evidence
presented by the parties
2. YES, the plaintiff was issued, and paid for, a first class
ticket without any reservation whatever.
Ratio .A written document speaks a uniform language;
that spoken word could be notoriously unreliable. If
only to achieve stability in the relations between
passenger and air carrier, adherence to the ticket so
issued is desirable.
Reasoning
- Petitioner asserts that said ticket did not represent the
true and complete intent and agreement of the parties;
that said respondent knew that he did not have
confirmed reservations for first class on any specific
flight, although he had tourist class protection; that,
accordingly, the issuance of a first class ticket was no
guarantee that he would have a first class ride, but that
such would depend upon the availability of first class
seats. However, CA held that Air France should know
whether or not the tickets it issues are to be honored or
not. The trial court also accepted as evidence the
written documents submitted by Carrasco and even the

testimony of the air-carriers employees attested that


indeed, Carrasco was issued a first class ticket.
- If, as petitioner underscores, a first-class-ticket holder
is not entitled to a first class seat, notwithstanding the
fact that seat availability in specific flights is therein
confirmed, then an air passenger is placed in the hollow
of the hands of an airline.
-Also, when Carrascoso was asked to confirm his seat in
Bangkok, he was granted the first class seat. If there
had been no seat, and if the white man had a better
right to the seat, then why did they confirm Carrasco his
seat?
3. YES
Ratio. It is (therefore) unnecessary to inquire as to
whether or not there is sufficient averment in the
complaint to justify an award for moral damages.
Deficiency in the complaint, if any, was cured by the
evidence. An amendment thereof to conform to the
evidence is not even required.
Reasoning
- There was a contract to furnish plaintiff a first class
passage covering, amongst others, the BangkokTeheran leg; Second, said contract was breached when
petitioner failed to furnish first class transportation at
Bangkok; and Third, there was bad faith when
petitioner's employee compelled Carrascoso to leave his
first class accommodation berth "after he was already
seated" and to take a seat in the tourist class, by reason
of which he suffered inconvenience, embarrassments
and humiliations, thereby causing him mental anguish,
serious anxiety, wounded feelings and social
humiliation, resulting in moral damages.
- Air France did not present evidence that the white
man made a prior reservation, nor proved that the
white man had better right over the seat; also, if
the managers actions could be justified, they should
have presented the manager to testify in court but
they did not do so
- The manager not only prevented Carrascoso from
enjoying his right to a first class seat; worse, he imposed
his arbitrary will; he forcibly ejected him from his seat,
made him suffer the humiliation of having to go to the
tourist class compartment-just to give way to another
passenger whose right thereto has not been
established. Certainly, this is bad faith. Unless, of
course, bad faith has assumed a meaning different from
what is understood in law. For, "bad faith"
contemplates a "state of mind affirmatively operating
with furtive design or with some motive of self-interest
or ill will or for ulterior purposes
4. YES
- The responsibility of an employer for the tortious act
of its employees need not. be essayed. For the willful

malevolent act of petitioner's manager, petitioner, his


employer, must answer.
5. YES
- Petitioner's contract with Carrascoso, is one attended
with public duty. The stress of Carrascoso's. action as
we have said, is placed upon his wrongful expulsion.
This is a violation of public duty by the petitioner-air
carrier-a case of quasi-delict. Damages are proper.
(note: it was held that it was a case of quasi-delict even
though it was a breach of contract)
Ratio
A contract to transport passengers is quite
different in kind and degree from any other contractual
relation.43 And is, because of the relation which an aircarrier sustains with the public. Its business is mainly
with the travelling public. It invites people to avail of the
comforts and I advantages it offers. The contract of air
carriage, therefore, generates a relation attended with
a public duty. Neglect or malfeasance of the carrier's
employees, naturally, could give ground for an action
for damages.
Reasoning
- Passengers do not contract merely for transportation.
They have a right to be treated by the carrier's
employees with kindness, respect, courtesy and due
consideration. They are entitled to be protected against
personal misconduct, injurious language, indignities and
abuses from such employees. So it is, that any rude or
discourteous conduct on the part of employees towards
a passenger gives the latter an action for damages
against the carrier.
6. YES, if forms part of the res gestae
Ratio. Testimony of the entry does not come within the
proscription of the best evidence rule. Such testimony is
admissible.
- alsoFrom a reading of the transcript just quoted,
when the dialogue happened, the impact of the
startling occurrence was still fresh and continued to be
felt. The excitement had not as yet died down.
Statements then, in this environment, are admissible as
part of the res gestae. For, they grow "out of the
nervous excitement and mental and physical condition
of the declarant".
Reasoning
- Carrascoso testified that the purser of the air-carrier
made an entry in his notebooks reading "First class
passenger was forced to go to the tourist class against
his will, and that the captain refused to intervene". The
petitioner contents that it should not be admitted as
evidence, as it was only hearsay. However, the subject
of inquiry is not the entry, but the ouster incident. Also,
the said entry was made outside the Philippines and by
an employee of petitioner. It would have been easy for

Air France to contradict Carrascosos testimony if they


had presented the purser.
7. YES
Ratio The Civil Code gives the Court ample power to
grant exemplary damages-in contracts and quasicontracts. The only condition is that defendant should
have "acted in a wanton, fraudulent, reckless,
oppressive, or malevolent manner".
Reasoning
- The manner of ejectment of respondent Carrascoso
from his first class seat fits into this legal precept
8. YES
Ratio. The grant of exemplary damages justifies a
similar Judgment for attorneys' fees. The least that can
be said is that the courts below felt that it is but just and
equitable that attorneys' fees be given.\
9. NO
Ratio. The task of fixing these amounts is primarily with
the trial court. The dictates of good sense suggest that
we give our imprimatur thereto. Because, the facts and
circumstances point to the reasonableness thereof.
DISPOSITION On balance, we, say that the judgment of
the Court of Appeals does not suffer from 'reversible
error. We accordingly vote to affirm the same. Costs
against petitioner.

PSBA V CA
PADILLA; February 4, 1992
NATURE
Petition to review the decision of Court of Appeals.
FACTS
- A stabbing incident on August 30, 1985 which caused
the death of Carlitos Bautista on the premises of the
Philippine School of Business Administration (PSBA)
prompted the parents of the deceased to file suit in the
Manila RTC. It was established that his assailants were
not members of the schools academic community but
were outsiders.
- The suit impleaded PSBA, its President, VP, Treasure,
Chief of Security and Assistant Chief of Security. It
sought to adjudge them liable for the victims death due
to their alleged negligence, recklessness and lack of
security precautions.
- Defendants (now petitioners) sought to have the suit
dismissed alleging that since they are presumably sued
under Art. 2180 of the Civil Code, the complaint states
no cause of action against them since academic
institutions, like PSBA, are beyond the ambit of that
rule.
- Respondent Trial court denied the motion to dismiss.
And the MFR was similarly dealt with. Petitioners the
assailed the trial courts dispositions before the
respondent appellate court which affirmed the trial
courts ruling.
ISSUE
WON respondent court is correct in denying dismissal of
the case
HELD
Ratio Although a school may not be liable under Art.
2180 on quasi-delicts, it may still be liable under the law
on contracts.
Reasoning
- The case should be tried on its merits. But respondent
courts premise is incorrect. It is expressly mentioned in
Art. 2180 that the liability arises from acts done by
pupils or students of the institution. In this sense, PSBA
is not liable. But when an academic institution accepts
students for enrollment, the school makes itself
responsible in providing their students with an
atmosphere that is conducive for learning. Certainly, no
student can absorb the intricacies of physics or explore
the realm of arts when bullets are flying or where there
looms around the school premises a constant threat to
life and limb.
DISPOSITION the foregoing premises considered, the
petition is DENIED. The Court of origin is hereby ordered
to continue proceedings consistent wit this ruling of the
Court. Costs against the petitioners.

SYQUIA V CA (Mla Memorial Park)


217 SCRA 624 CAMPOS, JR.; January 27, 1993
NATURE
Petition for review of CA decision dismissing Syquia
familys complaint for damages against Manila
Memorial Park Cemetery, Inc. (Mla Memorial)
FACTS
- Juan SYQUIA, father of the deceased Vicente Syquia,
authorized and instructed the defendant to inter the
remains of deceased.
- After about a month, preparatory to transferring the
remains to a newly purchased family plot also at the
same cemetery, the concrete vault encasing the coffin
of the deceased was removed from its niche
underground. As the concrete vault was being raised to
the surface, the Syquias discovered that the vault had a
hole approx 3 in. in diameter near the bottom and it
appeared that water drained out of the hole.
- Pursuant to an authority granted by the Municipal
Court of Paraaque, they caused the opening of the
concrete vault and discovered that:
(a) the interior walls showed evidence of total flooding;
(b) coffin was entirely damaged by water, filth and silt
causing the wooden parts to separate and to crack the
viewing glass panel located directly above the head and
torso of the deceased;
(c) entire lining of coffin, clothing of the deceased, and
the exposed parts of the deceased's remains were
damaged and soiled.
- SYQUIAS base their claim for damages against Mla
Memorial on either: (1) breach of its obligation to
deliver a defect-free concrete vault;
(2) gross negligence in failing to seal the concrete vault
(Art. 2176)
- Whatever kind of negligence it has committed, MLA
MEMORIAL is deemed to be liable for desecrating the
grave of the dead.
Trial Courts Ruling
- Contract between the parties did not guarantee that
the cement vault would be waterproof.
- No quasi-delict because the defendant was not guilty
of any fault or negligence, and because there was a preexisting contractual relation between the Syquias and
Mla Memorial.
- The father himself, Juan Syquia, chose the gravesite
despite knowing that said area had to be constantly
sprinkled with water to keep the grass green and that
water would eventually seep through the vault.
- The act of boring a hole in the vault was necessary so
as to prevent the vault from floating away.
- CA affirmed judgment of dismissal; MFR was also
denied.
ISSUES

1. WON Mla Memorial breached its contract with


petitioners,
or alternatively
2. WON it can be liable for culpa aquiliana
HELD
1. NO
Ratio Parties are bound by the terms of their contract,
which is the law between them. A contracting party
cannot incur a liability more than what is expressly
specified in his undertaking. It cannot be extended by
implication, beyond the terms of the contract. (RCBC v
CA)
Reasoning
- They entered into a contract entitled "Deed of Sale
and Certificate of Perpetual Care." Mla Memorial bound
itself to provide the concrete box to be sent in the
interment.
- Rule 17 of the Rules and Regulations of MLA
MEMORIAL provides that: Every earth interment shall
be made enclosed in a concrete box, or in an outer wall
of stone, brick or concrete, the actual installment of
which shall be made by the employees of the
Association. Pursuant to this, a concrete vault was
installed and after the burial, the vault was covered by a
cement lid.
- Syquias claim that there was a breach of contract
because it was stated in the brochures that lot may
hold single or double internment underground in sealed
concrete vault."
- "Sealed" meant "closed." Standard dictionaries define
seal as any of various closures or fastenings that cannot
be opened without rupture and that serve as a check
against tampering or unauthorized opening.
- "Sealed" cannot be equated with "waterproof". When
the terms of the contract are clear and leave no doubt
as to the intention of the contracting parties, then the
literal meaning of the stipulation shall control.
2. NO
Ratio Negligence is defined by law as the "omission of
that diligence which is required by the nature of the
obligation and corresponds with the circumstances of
the persons, of the time and of the place." In the
absence of stipulation or legal provision providing the
contrary, the diligence to be observed in the
performance of the obligation is that which is expected
of a good father of a family.
Reasoning
- Although a pre-existing contractual relation between
the parties does not preclude the existence of a culpa
aquiliana, circumstances of the case do not show
negligence. The reason for the boring of the hole was
explained by Henry Flores, Interment Foreman, who
said that: When the vault was placed on the grave a

hole was placed on the vault so that water could come


into the vault because it was raining heavily then
because the vault has no hole the vault will float and
the grave would be filled with water.
- Private respondent has exercised the diligence of a
good father of a family in preventing the accumulation
of water inside the vault which would have resulted in
the caving in of earth around the grave. Finding no
evidence of negligence, there is no reason to award
damages.
Dispositive CA decision affirmed in toto.

CALALAS VS MENDOZA
GR 122039| 31 May 2000
FACTS
-At 10 a.m. of 23 August 1989, Eliza Jujeurche G.
Sunga, then a collegefreshman majoring in Physical
Education at the Siliman University, took a passenger
jeepney owned and operated by Vicente Calalas. As the
jeepney wasfilled to capacity of about 24 passengers,
Sunga was given by the conductor anextension seat, a
wooden stool at the back of the door at the rear end of
thevehicle. On the way to Poblacion Sibulan, Negros
Occidental, the jeepneystopped to let a passenger off.
As she was seated at the rear of the vehicle,Sunga gave
way to the outgoing passenger. Just as she was doing
so, an Isuzutruck driven by Iglecerio Verena and owned
by Francisco Salva bumped the leftrear portion of the
jeepney. As a result, Sunga was injured. She sustained
afracture of the distal third of the left tibia-fibula with
severe necrosis of the underlying skin. Closed
reduction of the fracture, long leg circular casting, and
case wedging were done under sedation. Her
confinement in the hospital lasted from August 23 to
September 7, 1989. Her attending physician, Dr. Danilo
V. Oligario, an orthopedic surgeon, certified she would
remain on a cast for a period of 3 months and would
have to ambulate in crutches during said period.
-On 9 October 1989, Sunga filed a complaint for
damages against Calalas before the RTC of Dumaguete
City (Branch 36), alleging violation of the contract of
carriage by the former in failing to exercise the diligence
required of him as a common carrier. Calalas, on the
other hand, filed a third-party complaint against
Francisco Salva, the owner of the Isuzu truck. The lower
court rendered judgment, against Salva as third-party
defendant and absolved Calalas of
liability, holding that it was the driver of the Isuzu truck
who was responsible for the accident. It took
cognizance of another case (Civil Case 3490), filed by
Calalas against Salva and Verena, for quasi-delict, in
which Branch 37 of the same court held Salva and his
driver Verena jointly liable to Calalas for the damage to
his jeepney.
-On appeal to the Court of Appeals, and on 31 March
1991, the ruling of the lower court was reversed on the
ground that Sungas cause of action was based on a
contract of carriage, not quasi-delict, and that the
common carrier failed to exercise the diligence
required under the Civil Code. The appellate court
dismissed the third-party complaint against Salva and
adjudged Calalas liable for damages to Sunga. The Court
ordered Calalas tro pay Sunga (1) P50,000.00 as
actual and compensatory damages; (2) P50,000.00 as
moral damages; (3) P10,000.00 as attorneys fees; and

(4) P1,000.00 as expenses of litigation; and (5) to pay


the costs. Calalas motion for reconsideration was
denied 11 September 1995. Hence, the petition for
review on certiorari.
ISSUES & ARGUMENTS
W/N The CA erred in reversing the TCs ruling?
HOLDING & RATIO DECIDENDI
NO.
The Supreme Court affirmed the 31 March 1991
decision and the 11 September 1995 resolution of the
Court of Appeals, with the modification that the
award of moral damages is deleted.
1.
Res Judicata does not apply
Sunga is not bound by the ruling in Civil Case 3490,
which found the driver and the owner of the truck
liable for quasi-delict, as she was never a party to that
case. Further, the issues in Civil Case 3490 and in the
present case are not the same. The issue in Civil Case
3490 was whether Salva and his driver Verena were
liable for quasi-delict for the
damage caused to Calalas jeepney. On the other hand,
the issue in the present case is whether Calalas is
liable on his contract of carriage. The principle of
res judicata, therefore, does not apply.
2.
Distinction between culpa aquiliana or culpa
extracontractual, and culpa contractual Quasi-delict,
also known as culpa aquiliana or culpa extra
contractual, has as its source the negligence of the
tortfeasor. On the other hand, breach of contract
or culpa contractual is premised upon the negligence
in the performance of a contractual obligation. In
quasi-delict, the negligence or fault should be clearly
established because it is the basis of the action,
whereas in breach of contract, the action can be
prosecuted merely by proving the existence of the
contract and the fact that the obligor, in this case the
common carrier, failed to transport his passenger safely
to his destination.
3.
Common carriers presumed at fault unless
they observed extraordinary diligence; Burden of proof
In case of death or injuries to passengers, Article 1756
of the Civil Code provides that common carriers are
presumed to have been at fault or to have acted
negligently unless they prove that they observed
extraordinary diligence as defined in Articles 1733 and
1755 of the Code. The provision necessarily shifts to the
common carrier the burden of proof.
4.
Doctrine of proximate cause applicable only in
quasi-delict, not in breach of contract
The doctrine of proximate cause is applicable only in
actions for quasi-delict, not in actions involving

breach of contract. The doctrine is a device for


imputing liability to a person where there is no
relation between him and another party. In such a
case,
the
obligation is created by law itself. But, where there is a
pre-existing contractual relation between the parties,
it is the parties themselves who create the
obligation, and the function of the law is merely to
regulate the relation thus created. Herein, it is
immaterial
that the proximate cause of the collision between
the jeepney and the truck was the negligence of the
truck driver.
5.
Articles 1733, 1755, and 1756 NCC
Insofar as contracts of carriage are concerned, some
aspects regulated by the Civil Code are those respecting
the diligence required of common carriers with regard
to the safety of passengers as well as the presumption
of negligence in cases of death or injury to passengers.
Article 1733 of the Civil Code provides that Common
carriers, from the nature of their business and for
reasons of public policy, are bound to observe
extraordinary diligence in the vigilance over the
goods and for the safety of the passengers
transported by them, according to all the circumstances
of each case. Such extraordinary diligence in the
vigilance over the goods is further expressed in articles
1734, 1735, and 1746, Nos. 5,6, and 7, while the
extraordinary diligence for the safety of the passengers
is further set forth in articles 1755 and 1756. On the
other hand, Article 1755 of the Civil Code provides
that A common carrier is bound to carry the
passengers safely as far as human care and foresight
can provide, using the utmost diligence of very cautious
persons, with due regard for all the circumstances.
Article 1756 provides that In case of death of or
injuries to passengers, common carriers are presumed
to have been at fault or to have acted negligently,
unless they prove that they observed extraordinary
diligence as prescribed by articles 1733 and 1755.
6.
In violation of traffic rules; Section 54
(Obstruction of Traffic) Herein, the jeepney was not
properly parked, its rear portion being exposed about 2
meters from the broad shoulders of the highway, and
facing the middle of the highway in a diagonal angle.
This is a violation of the RA 4136, as amended, or
the Land
Transportation and Traffic Code, which provides in
Section 54 (Obstruction of Traffic) that No person shall
drive his motor vehicle in such a manner as to obstruct
or impede the passage of any vehicle, nor, while
discharging or taking on passengers or loading or
unloading freight, obstruct the free passage of other
vehicles on the highway.

7.
In violation of traffic rules; Section 32(a)
(Exceeding registered capacity)
Herein,the driver took in more passengers than the
allowed seating capacity of the jeepney, a violation of
Section 32(a) of the same law. Section 32 [a] (Exceeding
registered capacity) provides that No person
operating any motor vehicle shall allow more
passengers or more freight or cargo in his vehicle than
its registered capacity. The fact that Sunga was seated
in an extension seat placed her in a peril greater than
that to which the other passengers were exposed.
8.
Driver of jeepney did not exercise utmost
diligence of very cautious persons
Upon the happening of the accident, the presumption
of
negligence
at
once
arose,
and
it
became the duty of Calalas to prove that he had to
observe
extraordinary
diligence
in
the
care of his passengers. The driver of jeepney did not
carry
Sunga
safely
as
far
as
human
care and foresight could provide, using the utmost
diligence
of
very
cautious
persons,
with due regard for all the circumstances as required
by Article 1755. Not only was Calalas unable to
overcome the presumption of negligence imposed on
him for the
injury sustained by Sunga, but also, the evidence shows
he was actually negligent in transporting passengers.
9.
Taking of Extension seat cannot be considered
an implied assumption of risk Sungas taking an
extension seat did not amount to an implied
assumption of risk. Otherwise, iIt is akin to arguing that
the injuries to the many victims of the tragedies in our
seas should not be compensated merely because those
passengers assumed a greater risk of drowning by
boarding an overloaded ferry.
PNB vs FF Cruz (walang digest pa e)
GR No. 173259
DECISION
DEL CASTILLO, J.:
As between a bank and its depositor, where the
banks negligence is the proximate cause of the loss and the
depositor is guilty of contributory negligence, the greater
proportion of the loss shall be borne by the bank.
This Petition for Review on Certiorari seeks to
reverse and set aside the Court of Appeals January 31, 2006

Decision[1] in CA-G.R. CV No. 81349, which modified the


January 30, 2004 Decision[2] of the Regional Trial Court of
Manila City, Branch 46 in Civil Case No. 97-84010, and the
June 26, 2006 Resolution[3] denying petitioners motion for
reconsideration.
Factual Antecedents
The antecedents are aptly summarized by the
appellate court:
In its complaint, it is alleged that
[respondent F.F. Cruz & Co., Inc.]
(hereinafter FFCCI) opened savings/current
or so-called combo account No. 0219-830146 and dollar savings account No. 02190502-458-6 with [petitioner Philippine
National Bank] (hereinafter PNB) at its
Timog Avenue Branch. Its President Felipe
Cruz (or Felipe) and Secretary-Treasurer
Angelita A. Cruz (or Angelita) were the
named signatories for the said accounts.
The said signatories on separate
but coeval dates left for and returned from
the Unites States of America, Felipe on
March 18, 1995 until June 10, 1995 while
Angelita followed him on March 29, 1995
and returned ahead on May 9, 1995.
While they were thus out of the
country, applications for cashiers and
managers [checks] bearing Felipes
[signature] were presented to and both
approved by the PNB. The first was on
March 27, 1995 for P9,950,000.00 payable
to a certain Gene B. Sangalang and the
other one was on April 24, 1995
for P3,260,500.31 payable to one Paul
Bautista. The amounts of these checks were
then debited by the PNB against the combo
account of [FFCCI].
When Angelita returned to the
country, she had occasion to examine the
PNB statements of account of [FFCCI] for
the months of February to August 1995 and
she noticed the deductions ofP9,950,000.00
and P3,260,500.31. Claiming that these
were unauthorized and fraudulently made,

[FFCCI] requested PNB to credit back and


restore to its account the value of the
checks. PNB refused, and thus constrained
[FFCCI] filed the instant suit for damages
against the PNB and its own accountant
Aurea Caparas (or Caparas).
In its traverse, PNB averred lack of
cause of action. It alleged that it exercised
due diligence in handling the account of
[FFCCI]. The applications for managers
check have passed through the standard
bank procedures and it was only after
finding no infirmity that these were given
due course. In fact, it was no less than
Caparas, the accountant of [FFCCI], who
confirmed the regularity of the transaction.
The delay of [FFCCI] in picking up and going
over the bank statements was the
proximate cause of its self-proclaimed
injury. Had [FFCCI] been conscientious in
this regard, the alleged chicanery would
have been detected early on and Caparas
effectively prevented from absconding with
its millions. It prayed for the dismissal of the
complaint.[4]

Regional Trial Courts Ruling

unauthorized debits from FFCCIs combo account. Thus, PNB


should bear the whole loss
WHEREFORE, judgment is hereby
rendered ordering defendant [PNB] to pay
plaintiff
[FFCCI] P13,210,500.31
representing the amounts debited against
plaintiffs account, with interest at the legal
rate computed from the filing of the
complaint plus costs of suit.
IT IS SO ORDERED.[5]
Court of Appeals Ruling
On January 31, 2006, the CA rendered the assailed Decision
affirming with modification the Decision of the trial court, viz:
WHEREFORE, the appealed Decision
is AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that
[PNB] shall pay [FFCCI] only 60% of the
actual damages awarded by the trial court
while the remaining 40% shall be borne by
[FFCCI].
SO ORDERED.[6]

The trial court ruled that F.F. Cruz and Company, Inc.

The appellate court ruled that PNB was negligent in not

( FFCCI) was guilty of negligence in clothing Aurea Caparas

properly verifying the genuineness of the signatures

(Caparas) with authority to make decisions on and

appearing on the two applications for managers check as

dispositions of its account which paved the way for the

evidenced by the lack of the signature of the bank verifier

fraudulent transactions perpetrated by Caparas; that, in

thereon. Had this procedure been followed, the forgery

practice, FFCCI waived the two-signature requirement in

would have been detected.

transactions involving the subject combo account so much so


that Philippine National Bank (PNB) could not be faulted for

Nonetheless, the appellate court found FFCCI guilty

honoring the applications for managers check even if only the

of contributory

signature of Felipe Cruz appeared thereon; and that FFCCI

accountant/bookkeeper Caparas with apparent authority to

was negligent in not immediately informing PNB of the fraud.

transact business with PNB. In addition, FFCCI failed to timely

negligence

because

it

clothed its

examine its monthly statement of account and report the


On the other hand, the trial court found that PNB

discrepancy to PNB within a reasonable period of time to

was, likewise, negligent in not calling or personally verifying

prevent or recover the loss. FFCCIs contributory negligence,

from the authorized signatories the legitimacy of the subject

thus, mitigated the banks liability. Pursuant to the rulings

withdrawals considering that they were in huge amounts. For

in Philippine Bank of Commerce v. Court of Appeals[7] and The

this reason, PNB had the last clear chance to prevent the

Consolidated Bank & Trust Corporation v. Court of


[8]

as to 60% thereof) pursuant to our rulings in Philippine Bank

Appeals, the appellate court allocated the damages on a 60-

of Commerce v. Court of Appeals[14] and The Consolidated

40 ratio with the bigger share to be borne by PNB.

Bank & Trust Corporation v. Court of Appeals.[15]

From this decision, both FFCCI and PNB sought review before
this Court.

PNB contends that it was not negligent in verifying


the genuineness of the signatures appearing on the subject
applications for managers check. It claims that it followed the

On August 17, 2006, FFCCI filed its petition for review


[9]

on certiorari which was docketed as G.R. No. 173278. On


[10]

March 7, 2007, the Court issued a Resolution

denying said

petition.On June 13, 2007, the Court issued another


[11]

Resolution

standard operating procedure in the verification process and


that four bank officers examined the signatures and found
the same to be similar with those found in the signature cards
of FFCCIs authorized signatories on file with the bank.

denying FFCCIs motion for reconsideration. In

denying the aforesaid petition, the Court ruled that FFCCI

PNB raises factual issues which are generally not

essentially raises questions of fact which are, as a rule, not

proper for review under a Rule 45 petition. While there are

reviewable under a Rule 45 petition; that FFCCI failed to show

exceptions to this rule, we find none applicable to the present

that its case fell within the established exceptions to this rule;

case. As correctly found by the appellate court, PNB failed to

and that FFCCI was guilty of contributory negligence. Thus,

make the proper verification because the applications for the

the appellate court correctly mitigated PNBs liability.

managers check do not bear the signature of the bank


verifier. PNB concedes the absence[16] of the subject signature

On July 13, 2006, PNB filed its petition for review


on certiorari which is the subject matter of this case.

but argues that the same was the result of inadvertence. It


posits that the testimonies of Geronimo Gallego (Gallego),
then the branch manager of PNB Timog Branch, and Stella

Issue

San Diego (San Diego), then branch cashier, suffice to


establish that the signature verification process was duly

Whether the Court of Appeals seriously erred when

followed.

it found PNB guilty of negligence.[12]


We are not persuaded.
Our Ruling
First, oral testimony is not as reliable as
We affirm the ruling of the CA.

documentary evidence.[17] Second, PNBs own witness, San

PNB is guilty of negligence.

Diego, testified that in the verification process, the principal


duty to determine the genuineness of the signature devolved

Preliminarily, in G.R. No. 173278, we resolved with

upon the account analyst.[18] However, PNB did not present

finality[13] that FFCCI is guilty of contributory negligence, thus,

the account analyst to explain his or her failure to sign the

making it partly liable for the loss (i.e., as to 40% thereof)

box for signature and balance verification of the subject

arising from the unauthorized withdrawal of P13,210,500.31

applications for managers check, thus, casting doubt as to

from its combo account. The case before us is, thus, limited

whether he or she did indeed verify the signatures thereon.

to PNBs alleged negligence in the subject transactions which

Third, we cannot fault the appellate court for not giving

the appellate court found to be the proximate cause of the

weight to the testimonies of Gallego and San Diego

loss, thus, making it liable for the greater part of the loss (i.e.,

considering that the latter are naturally interested in

exculpating themselves from any liability arising from the


failure

to

detect

the

forgeries

in

the

subject

transactions. Fourth, Gallego admitted that PNBs employees


received training on detecting forgeries from the National
[19]

Bureau of Investigation.

witness, that the forged signatures in the subject applications


for managers check contained noticeable and significant
differences from the genuine signatures of FFCCIs authorized
signatories and that the forgeries should have been detected
or observed by a trained signature verifier of any bank.[20]
Given the foregoing, we find no reversible error in
the findings of the appellate court that PNB was negligent in
the handling of FFCCIs combo account, specifically, with
respect to PNBs failure to detect the forgeries in the subject
applications for managers check which could have prevented
the loss. As we have often ruled, the banking business is
impressed with public trust.[21] A higher degree of diligence is
imposed on banks relative to the handling of their affairs than
that of an ordinary business enterprise.[22] Thus, the degree of
responsibility, care and trustworthiness expected of their
officials and employees is far greater than those of ordinary
officers and employees in other enterprises.[23] In the case at
bar, PNB failed to meet the high standard of diligence
by

the

31, 2006 Decision and June 26, 2006 Resolution of the Court
of Appeals in CA-G.R. CV No. 81349 are AFFIRMED.
Costs against petitioner.

However, Emmanuel Guzman,

then NBI senior document examiner, testified, as an expert

required

WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED. The January

circumstances

to

prevent

the

fraud. In Philippine Bank of Commerce v. Court of


Appeals[24] and The Consolidated Bank & Trust Corporation v.
Court of Appeals,[25] where the banks negligence is the
proximate cause of the loss and the depositor is guilty of
contributory negligence, we allocated the damages between
the bank and the depositor on a 60-40 ratio. We apply the
same ruling in this case considering that, as shown
above, PNBs negligence is the proximate cause of the loss
while the issue as to FFCCIs contributory negligence has been
settled with finality in G.R. No. 173278. Thus, the appellate
court properly adjudged PNB to bear the greater part of the
loss consistent with these rulings.

SO ORDERED.

C. Principles

Ocean Builders vs. Sps. Cubacub


Ocean Builders Construction Corporation vs. Spouses

Article 19. Every person must, in the exercise of his


rights and in the performance of his duties, act with
justice, give everyone his due, and observe honesty and
good faith.

Cubacub
G.R. No. 150898, April 13, 2011
Facts: Bladimir Cubacub was employed as maintenance

Article 20. Every person who, contrary to law, wilfully or


negligently causes damage to another, shall indemnify
the latter for the same.

man

by

petitioner

company

Ocean

Builders

Construction Corp. at its office in Caloocan City. On April


9, 1995, Bladimir was afflicted with chicken pox. He was
thus advised by petitioner Dennis Hao, the companys

Article 21. Any person who wilfully causes loss or injury


to another in manner that is contrary to morals, good
customs or public policy shall compensate the latter for
the damage.

general manager, to rest for three days which he did at


the companys barracks where he lives free of charge.
Later in the afternoon, however, he asked a co-worker,
Ignacio Silangga, to accompany him to his house in
Capas, Tarlac so he could rest. Informed by Silangga of
Bladimirs intention, Hao gave Bladimir P1,000.00 and
ordered Silangga to instead bring Bladimir to the
nearest hospital.
Bladimir was brought to the Caybiga Community
Hospital, a primary-care hospital around one kilometer
away from the office of the company. At about 8 oclock
in the evening of the same day, April 13, 1995,
Bladimirs

parents-respondent

spouses

Cubacub,

arrived at the Caybiga Hospital and transferred Bladimir


to the Quezon City General Hospital where he was
placed in the intencive care unit and died the following
day.
The death certificate issued by the QCGH recorded
Bladimirs immediate cause of death as cardiorespiratory arrest and the antecedent cause as
pneumonia.
Bladimirs parents-herein respondents later filed on
August 17, 1995 before the Tarlac Regional Trial Court a
complaint for damages against petitioners, alleging that
Hao was guilty of negligence which resulted in the

deterioration of Bladimirs condition leading to his


death.
Issue: Whether the manager was guilty of negligence
for not bringing his employee, who later died, to a
better hospital, and hence liable for torts based on
Article 161 of the Labor Code.
Held:
No, the manager, Hao, was not guilty of negligence for
not bringing his employee, who later died, to a better
hospital.
ART. 161. Assistance of employer. It shall be the duty
of

any

employer

to

provide

all

the necessary

assistance to ensure the adequate and immediate


medical and dental attendance and treatment to an
injured or sick employee in case of emergency.
Haos advice for Bladimir to, as he did, take a 3-day rest
and to later have him brought to the nearest hospital
constituted

adequate

and

immediate

medical

attendance that he is mandated, under Art. 161, to


provide to a sick employee in an emergency.
Chicken pox is self-limiting. Hao does not appear to
have a medical background. He may not be thus
expected to have known that Bladimir needed to be
brought to a hospital with better facilities than the
Caybiga Hospital.
At all events, the alleged negligence of Hao cannot be
considered as the proximate cause of the death of
Bladimir. An injury or damage is proximately caused by
an act or failure to act, whenever it appears from the
evidence in the case that the act or omission played a
substantial part in bringing about or actually causing the
injury or damage, and that the injury or damage was
either a direct result or a reasonably probable
consequence of the act or omission.