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Aboitiz Shipping Corp. v. Insurance Co.

of North America Moreover, the mercantile laws, in making use of the words ship, vessels, boat,
embarkation, etc., refer exclusively to those which are engaged in the
G.R. No. 168402, 6 August 2008 transportation of passengers and freight from one port to another or from one
place to another; in a word, they refer to merchant vessels and in no way can
FACTS: they or should they be understood as referring to pleasure craft, yachts,
pontoons, health service and harbor police vessels, floating storehouses,
MSAS Cargo International Limited and/or Associated and/or Subsidiary warships or patrol vessels, coast guard vessels, fishing vessels, towboats,
Companies (MSAS) procured an “all-risk” marine insurance policy from ICNA and other craft destined to other uses.
UK Limited of London for its cargo, consisting of wooden work tools and
workbenches purchased by consignee Science Teaching Improvement Facts:
Project (STIP) which was later on received by Aboitiz and shipped to Cebu.
However upon arrival, the checker noted that the crates were slightly broken LOPEZ wanted to come aboard the inter-island steamer SAN JACINTO so he
or cracked at the bottom causing the cargo to be withdrawn by the rode the motor boat JISON (incidentally, owned by ALBINO JISON), which
representative of the consignee, STIP and delivered to Don Bosco Technical ferried passengers to and from the boat (from land)
High School, Punta Princesa, Cebu City where it was received by Mr.
Bernhard Willing who later on reported the damage to Aboitiz The engineer of the boat (a.k.a. driver) was JUAN DURUELO, a 16 year old
novice without experience in running motor boat, who was then in his 3rd day
Consignee filed a claim against ICNA who then paid consignee and a of apprenticeship. Moreover, the boat was overloaded. As the JISON
subrogation receipt was duly signed by Willig. ICNA then advised Aboitiz of approached the SAN JACINTO, it came too near so it was hit by the propeller.
the receipt signed in its favor but received no reply so it filed for collection at As a result, LOPEZ was thrown off and was injured by the propeller.
the RTC.
Thus, LOPEZ sued JISON and DURUELO’s guardian. In response, the
ISSUE: defendants sought to dismiss the complaint as LOPEZ did not file a protest
within 24 hourst in accordance with Art. 835 of the Code of Commerce,
Whether or not ICNA can claim under the right of subrogation. therefore a condition precedent was not complied with.

RULING: Issue: Was protest necessary? No.

Yes. Only when that corporation is “transacting” or “doing business” in the Art. 835 is found in the section dealing with collisions of sea-going vessels,
country with a license necessary before it can institute suits. It may, however, and is not applicable to small boats engaged in river and bay traffic. Moreover,
bring suits on isolated business transactions, which is not prohibited under this section was intended to define the law relative to merchant vessels and
Philippine Law. The policy benefits any subsequent assignee, or holder, marine shipping.
including the consignee, who may file claims on behalf of the assured.
To reiterate, the use of the word “vessel” was not intended to include all ships,
Lopez v. Duruelo craft, or floating structures of every kind without limitation and thus, the
provisions of the section where Art. 835 is found in should not be held to
Doctrine include minor craft engaged only in river and bay traffic.

Art 835 does not apply to small boats engaged in river and bay traffic. This
articles apply to merchant vessels
THEREFORE, other vessels of a minor nature not engaged in maritime
When the mercantile codes speak of vessels, they refer solely and exclusively commerce, such as river boats and those carrying passengers from ship to
to merchant ships, as they do not include war ships furthermore, they almost shore, must be governed, as to their liability to passengers, by the provisions
always refer to craft which are not accessory to another as is the case of of the Civil Code or other appropriate special provisions of law.
launches, lifeboats, etc.
Thus, it follows that the complaint cannot be dismissed on the ground of the
failure to protest, as the code of commerce provisions are inapplicable

Rubiso v. Rivera (damages must have basis)


RIVERA allegedly acquired the pilot boat VALENTINA on JAN 4, but he did
not register such purchase. Subsequently, however, RUBISO bought the pilot
boat in a sale at public auction on JAN 23 and he registered it. RIVERA sued
for recovery of possession of the boat but the trial court ruled in favor of

A writ of execution was issued, which allowed RUBISO to salvage the pilot
boat, which at the time was stranded in BATANGAS. However, when the ship
was delivered to RUBISO, it was in a damaged condition. THUS, RUBISO
sued RIVERA for damages to the boat, which was allegedly caused by the
negligence of RIVERA and his employees

The TC dismissed the action for damages primarily because the boat was
already destroyed, so there was no basis for the damages.

Issue: Should damages be awarded? NO

Preliminarily, the court held that RUBISO had a better right because he was
able to registerthe sale.

Evidence shows that even before RUBISO bought the boat, it was already
seriously damaged due to a storm. Basically, by the time RUBISO bought the
boat, it had no more legal value. In fact, it was stranded for over 10 months
before RUBISO was declared to be the owner of the boat. THEREFORE, there
is no sufficient proof to prove that RUBISO indeed suffered any damage.

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