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torts & damages

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- Re: Naguiat Enterprises liability Reasoning - The respondents were regular employees of CFTI who received wages on a boundary basis. They offered no evidence that Naguiat Enterprises managed, supervised and controlled their employment. They instead submitted documents which had to do with CFTI, not Naguiat Enterprises. - Labor-only contractors are those where 1) the person supplying workers to the employer does no have substantial capital or investment in the form of tools or machinery and 2) the workers recruited and placed by such person are performing activities which are directly related to the principal business of the employer. - Independent contractors are those who exercise independent employment, contracting to do a piece of work according to their own methods without being subject to the control of their employer except as to the result of their work. - Sergio Naguiat was a stockholder and director of Naguiat Enterprises but, in supervising the taxi drivers and determining their employment terms, he was carrying out his responsibility as president of CFTI. - Naguiat Enterprises was in the trading business while CFTI was in the taxi business. - The Constitution of the CFTI-AAFES Taxi Drivers Association states that the members of the union are employees of CFTI and for collective and bargaining purposes, the employer is also CFTI. - Re: Antolin Naguiats liability Reasoning - Although he carried the title of general manager, it has not been shown that he had acted in such capacity. - No evidence on the extent of his participation in the management or operation of the business was proferred. - Re: Sergio Naguiats liability Ratio A director or officer may be held solidarly liable with a corporation by a specific provision of law because a corporation, being a juridical entity, may act only through its directors and officers. Obligations incurred by them, acting as such corporation agents, are not theirs but the direct accountabilities of the corporation they represent. In the absence of definite proof of who clearly are the officers of the corporation, the assumption falls on the President of the corporation. Reasoning - In his capacity as President, Sergio Naguiat cannot be exonerated. - An employer is defined to be any person acting in the interest of an employer, directly or indirectly. - Case in point is A.C. Ransom Labor Union CCLU vs. NLRC held that the identified employer A.C. Ransom Corporation, being an artificial person, must have an officer and in the absence of proof, the president is assumed to be the head of the corporation. - Both CFTI and Naguiat Enterprises were close family corporations owned by the same family. To the extent that stockholders are actively engaged in the management or business affairs of a close corporation, the stockholders shall be held to strict fiduciary duties to each other and among themselves. Said stockholders shall be liable for corporate torts unless the corporation has obtained reasonably adequate liability insurance. > Nothing in the records indicate that CFTI obtained reasonable adequate liability insurance. > Jurisprudence is wanting in the definition of corporate tort. Tort essentially consists in the violation of a right given or the omission of a duty imposed by law. Tort is a breach of legal duty.

INTRODUCTION
NAGUIAT V NLRC (National Organization of Workingmen and Galang) 269 SCRA 565 PANGANIBAN; March 13, 1997
NATURE Special civil action in the Supreme Court, certiorari FACTS - Clark Field Taxi, Inc. held a concessionaires contract with the Army Air Force Exchange Services for the operation of taxi services within Clark Air Base. Sergio Naguiat was the president of CFTI while Antolin Naguiat was its vice president. Like Naguiat Enterprises, Inc. which was a trading firm, it was also a family-owned corporation. - Respondents were employed by the CFTI as taxicab drivers. > They were required to pay a daily boundary fee of US$26.50 (for those on duty from 1AM-12N) or US$27 (for those on duty from 12N to 12 MN) > Incidental expenses were maintained by the drivers (including gasoline expenses). > Drivers worked 3-4 times a week depending on the availability of vehicles and earned no less than US$15.00 a day. In excess of that amount, they had to make cash deposits to the company which they could withdraw every fifteen days. - AAFES was dissolved because of the phase-out of the military bases in Clark and the services of the respondents were officially terminated on November 26, 1991. - AAFES Taxi Drivers Association, the drivers union, and CFTI held negotiations as regards separation benefits. They arrived at an agreement that the separated drivers would be given P500 for ever year as severance pay. Most of the drivers accepted this but some refused to do so. - Those who did not accept the initial severance pay disaffiliated themselves with drivers union and through the National Organization of Workingmen, they filed a complaint against Sergio Naguiat under the name and style Naguiat Enterprises, AAFES and AAFES union. - The labor arbiter ordered the petitioner to pay the drivers P1,200 for every year of service for humanitarian consideration, setting aside the earlier agreement between the CFTI and the drivers union. It also rejected the idea that the CFTI was forced to close it business due to great financial losses and lose opportunity since at the time of its closure it was profitably earning. The labor arbiter however did not award separation pay because to impose a monetary obligation to an employer whose profitable business was abruptly shot (sic) shot down by force majeur would be unfair and unjust. - The NLRC modified the decision of the labor arbiter after respondents appealed by granting separation pay to the private respondents. It said that half of the monthly salary should be US$120 which should be paid in Philippine pesos. Naguiat Enterprieses should be joined with Sergio and Antolin Naguiat as jointly and severally liable.

Petitioners Claim: - Petitioners claim that the cessation of the business was due to the great financial losses and lost business opportunity when Clark Air Base was phased out due to the expiration of the RP-US Military Bases Agreement and the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. - They admitted that CFTI had agreed with the drivers union to grant the taxi drivers separation pay equivalent to P500 for every year of service. - They allege that Sergio and Antolin Naguiat were denied due process beause the petitioners were not furnished copies of the appeal to the NLRC. - They also allege that NOWM cannot make legal representation in behalf of the respondents because the latter should be bound by the decision of the drivers union. Respondents Comments: - The drivers alleged that they were employees of Naguiat Enterprises although their individual applications were approved by CFTI. They claimed to have been assigned to Naguiat Enterprises after having been hired by CFTO and that Naguia Enterprises managed, controlled and supervised their employment. - They averred that they should be entitled to separation pay based on their latest daily earnings or US$15 for working 16 days a month. ISSUES 1. WON the NLRC acted in excess of jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion in granting separation pay 2. WON NOWM was authorized to represent the private respondents 3. WON Naguiat Enterprieses, Sergio Naguiat and Antolin Naguiat were liable 4. WON Sergio and Antolin Naguiat were denied due process HELD 1. NO, the NLRC did not act in excess of jurisdiction or with abuse of discretion. Ratio Findings of fact of administrative bodies and quasi-judicial bodies are afforded great respect by the Court and are binding except when there is a showing of grave abuse of discretion or the decision was arrived at arbitrarily. Reasoning - Respondents showed that their monthly take home pay amounted to no less than $240 and this was not disputed by petitioners. - There is no record or evidence which shows that the closure of the taxi business was brought about by great financial losses no thanks to the Pinatubo eruption. It was rather brought about by the closure of the military bases. - Art. 283 of the CC provides that separation pay shall be equivalent to 1 month pay or at least month pay for every year of service, whichever is higher. The NLRC ruling was correct in terms of US$120 as the computed separation pay. 2. Petitioners can no longer question the authority of NOWM and are held in estoppel. Reasoning - NOWM was already representing the respondents before the labor arbiter and the petitioners did not assail their juridical personality then. - Petitioners also acknowledged before the Court that the taxi drivers are themselves parties in the case. 3. Naguiat Enterprises is not liable, Antolin Naguiat is not personally liable whereas Sergio Naguiat is solidarily liable.

torts & damages


> Art. 238 mandates the employer to grant separation pay to employees in case of cessation of operations or closure of the business not due to serious business losses or financial reverses which is the condition on this case. 4. There was no denial of due process. Reasoning - Even if the individual Naguiats were not impleaded as parties of the complaint, they could still be held liable because of jurisprudence (A.C. Ransom case). - Both also voluntarily submitted themselves to the jurisdiction of the labor arbiter when they filed a position paper. DISPOSITION The petition is partly granted. 1) CFTI and Sergio Naguiat are ordered to pay jointly and severally the individual respondents of US$120 for every year of service and 2) Naguiat Enterprises and Antolin Naguiat are absolved from liability.

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-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 cuasi-delito 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 extra-contractual' 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

BARREDO V GARCIA BOCOBO; July 8, 1942


NATURE Petition for review on certiorari 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 (quasi-delict 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


NATURE Appeal from an order of the CFI Quezon City 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

torts & damages


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.

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prof. casis
NATURE Appeal by certiorari to review and set aside the CA decision which affirmed in toto the RTCs decision FACTS - 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. ISSUE WON damages may be recovered for a breach of promise to marry on the basis of Art.21 of the Civil Code 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

- 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 quasi-delict 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 quasi-delict. 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.

CINCO V CANONOY 90 SCRA 369 Melencio-Herrera; May 31, 1979


NATURE Petition for review on certiorari FACTS

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

torts & damages


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. **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

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prof. casis
- In his testimony, Galo claimed that he did not even talk to Bulusan or any of his companions. Having been found with gunpowder residue in his hands, Galo attempted to exculpate himself from the results by confessing that he had been a cigarette smoker for the past ten years and had, in fact, just consumed eight cigarette sticks prior to the test., and that his hand may have been contaminated by a nitrogenous compound, the source of which is urine. Lastly, he said that he was not even present at the crime scene - Ballesteros interposed the defense of alibi, that he went to a nearby store to purchase some cigarettes. He returned home and cleaned his garlic bulbs before retiring at 9:00 oclock. The next morning, he busied himself with some chores, which included fertilizing his pepper plants with sulfate. He handled the fertilizers without gloves. He said that he uses his left hand in lighting cigarettes and he had no motive to kill the victims. - Bulusan echoed the defense of alibi of Galo and Ballesteros - The trial court found the three accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt of murder, qualified by treachery, and ordered them to pay jointly and solidarily: 1. The heirs of Jerry Agliam compensatory damages in the amount of P50,000.00, moral damages in the amount of P20,000.00, and actual damages in the amount of P35,755.00, with interest; 2. The heirs of the late Eduardo Tolentino, Sr., compensatory damages in the amount of P50,000.00, moral damages in the amount of P20,000.00, and actual damages in the total amount of P61,785.00, with interest; 3. Carmelo Agliam, actual damages in the amount of P2,003.40, and moral damages in the amount of P10,000.00, with interest; 4. Vidal Agliam Jr., Robert Cacal and Ronnel Tolentino, moral damages in the amount of P5,000.00 each, with interest. 5. The costs. ISSUES 1. WON the trial court was correct in finding accused-appellants guilty beyond reasonable doubt 2. WON the Court correctly ruled in finding that the offense was qualified by treachery 3. WON the Court was correct in the award of damages to the heirs of the victims HELD 1. YES Ratio Absolute certainty of guilt is not demanded by law to convict a person of a criminal charge. The doubt to the benefit of which an accused is entitled in a criminal trial is a reasonable doubt, not a whimsical or fanciful doubt based on imagined but wholly improbable possibilities and unsupported by evidence. Reasonable doubt is that engendered by an investigation of the whole proof and inability, after such investigation, to let the mind rest easy upon the certainty of guilt. Reasoning - In their testimonies, Carmelo and Vidal Agliam both described the area to be well illumined by the moon. Considering the luminescence of the moon and the proximity between them, the victims could distinctly identify their assailants. Also, the constant interaction between them through the years (in the buying and selling of cattle and Bulusan was a classmate of Vidal) would necessarily lead to familiarity with each other such that, at the very least, one would have been able to recognize the other easily - That accused-appellants had no motive in perpetrating the offense is irrelevant. Motive is the moving power which impels one to action for a definite result. Intent, on the other hand, is the purpose to use a particular

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

PEOPLE V BALLESTEROS 285 SCRA 438 ROMERO; January 29, 1998


NATURE An appeal from the decision of the Regional Trial Court finding the accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt of murder, qualified by treachery. FACTS - evening of May 28, 1991, Carmelo Agliam, his half-brother Eduardo Tolentino, Ronnel Tolentino, Vidal Agliam, his brother Jerry Agliam, Robert Cacal, Raymundo Bangi and Marcial Barid converged at a carinderia owned by Ronnel Tolentino. They proceeded to attend a dance but did not stay long because they sensed some hostility from Cesar Galo and his companions who were giving them dagger looks. In order to avoid trouble, especially during the festivity, they decided to head for home instead of reacting to the perceived provocation of Galo and his companions. - The group had barely left when their owner jeep was fired upon from the rear. Vidal Agliam was able to jump out from the jeep and landed just beside it, scurried to the side of the road and hid in the ricefield. His younger brother Jerry also managed to jump out, but was shot in the stomach and died. Carmelo Agliam, Robert Cacal and Ronnel Tolentino sustained injuries. Eduardo Tolentino was not even able to move from his seat and was hit with a bullet which punctured his right kidney which caused his death. - Based upon the affidavits of Carmelo and Vidal Agliam, warrants for the arrest of Ballesteros, Galo and Bulusan were issued. - All pleaded not guilty. Paraffin tests conducted on Galo and Ballesteros produced positive results. Bulusan was not tested for nitrates.

torts & damages


means to effect such result. The prosecution need not prove motive on the part of the accused when the latter has been positively identified as the author of the crime. - on their excuses regarding the source of the gunpowder traces found on their hands: Experts confirm the possibility that cigarettes, fertilizers and urine may leave traces of nitrates, but these are minimal and, unlike those found in gunpowder, may be washed off with tap water. - on the defense of alibi: for the defense of alibi to prosper, the accused must prove, not only that he was at some other place at the time of the commission of the crime, but also that it was physically impossible for him to be at the locus delicti or within its immediate vicinity. This accused-appellants failed to satisfactorily prove. Positive identification prevails over denials and alibis. - None of them attempted to corroborate their alibi through the testimony of witnesses. In fact, they never attempted to present as witnesses those who could have testified to having seen them elsewhere on the night in question. 2. YES Ratio The requisites of treachery are twofold: (1) (t)hat at the time of the attack, the victim was not in a position to defend himself; and (2) that the offender consciously adopted the particular means, method or form of attack employed by him. Reasoning - Here, it is obvious that the accused-appellants had sufficient opportunity to reflect on their heinous plan. The facts show that the attack was well-planned and not merely a result of the impulsiveness of the offenders. Manifestations of their evil designs were already apparent as early as the time of the dance. They were well-armed and approached the homebound victims, totally unaware of their presence, from behind. There was no opportunity for the latter to defend themselves 3. YES Ratio Damages may be defined as the pecuniary compensation, recompense, or satisfaction for an injury sustained, or as otherwise expressed, the pecuniary consequences which the law imposes for the breach of some duty or the violation of some right. Actual or compensatory damages are those awarded in satisfaction of, or in recompense for, loss or injury sustained, whereas moral damages may be invoked when the complainant has experienced mental anguish, serious anxiety, physical suffering, moral shock and so forth, and had furthermore shown that these were the proximate result of the offenders wrongful act or omission. Reasoning - In granting actual or compensatory damages, the party making a claim for such must present the best evidence available, viz., receipts, vouchers, and the like, as corroborated by his testimony. Here, the claim for actual damages by the heirs of the victims is not controverted, the same having been fully substantiated by receipts accumulated by them and presented to the court. Therefore, the award of actual damages is proper. However, the order granting compensatory damages to the heirs of Jerry Agliam and Eduardo Tolentino Sr. must be amended. Consistent with the policy of this Court, the amount of P 50,000.00 is given to the heirs of the victims by way of indemnity, and not as compensatory damages. As regards moral damages, the amount of psychological pain, damage and injury caused to the heirs of the victims, although inestimable, may be determined by the trial court in its discretion. Hence, we see no reason to disturb its findings as to this matter. DISPOSITION The decision appealed from is hereby AFFIRMED WITH MODIFICATION.

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253 SCRA 483 REGALADO; February 9, 1996
NATURE Petition for review on certiorari of a decision of CA

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therein. With the finality of the judgment of the trial court as to petitioners, the issue of propriety of the grant of right of way has already been laid to rest. 2. YES Ratio There is no cause of action for acts done by one person (in this case, upon his own property) in a lawful and proper manner, although such acts incidentally cause damage or an unavoidable loss to another, as such damage or loss is damnum absque injuria. Reasoning [1] To warrant the recovery of damages, there must be both a right of action for a legal wrong inflicted by the defendant, and damage resulting to the plaintiff therefrom. [2] Obiter: There is a material distinction between damages and injury. Injury is the illegal invasion of a legal right; damage is the loss, hurt, or harm which results from the injury; and damages are the recompense or compensation awarded for the damage suffered. Thus, there can be damage without injury in those instances in which the loss or harm was not the result of a violation of a legal duty. These situations are often called damnum absque injuria. [3] In order that the law will give redress for an act causing damage, that act must be not only hurtful, but wrongful. There must be damnum et injuria. The injury must result from a breach of duty or a legal wrong. [4] In this case, although there was damage, there was no legal injury. Contrary to the claim of private respondents, petitioners could not be said to have violated the principle of abuse of right (Art.21 CC) [5] The act of petitioners in constructing a fence within their lot is a valid exercise of their right as owners, hence not contrary to morals, good customs or public policy. The law recognizes in the owner the right to enjoy and dispose of a thing, without other limitations than those established by law. It is within the right of petitioners, as owners, to enclose and fence their property (See Art.430 CC). DISPOSITION The appealed decision of CA is REVERSED and SET ASIDE and the judgment of the trial court is REINSTATED.

FACTS - The plaintiff-appellee Mabasa owns a parcel of land with a two-door apartment erected thereon situated at Interior P. Burgos St., Palingon, Tipas, Tagig, Metro Manila. As access to P. Burgos Street from plaintiff's property, there are 2 possible passageways. The first passageway is approximately one meter wide and is about 20m distant from Mabasa's residence to P. Burgos St. Such path is passing in between the row of houses of defendants. The second passageway is about 3m in width. In passing thru said passageway, a less than a meter wide path through the septic tank and with 5-6m in length, has to be traversed. - When said property was purchased by Mabasa, there were tenants occupying the remises and who were acknowledged by plaintiff Mabasa as tenants. However, sometime in February, 1982, one of said tenants vacated the apartment and when plaintiff Mabasa went to see the premises, he saw that there had been built an adobe fence in the first passageway making it narrower in width. Said adobe fence was first constructed by defendants Santoses along their property which is also along the first passageway. Defendant Morato constructed her adobe fence and even extended said fence in such a way that the entire passageway was enclosed. And it was then that the remaining tenants of said apartment vacated the area. Defendant Cristina Santos testified that she constructed said fence because there was an incident when her daughter was dragged by a bicycle pedalled by a son of one of the tenants in said apartment along the first passageway. She also mentioned some other inconveniences of having at the front of her house a pathway such as when some of the tenants were drunk and would bang their doors and windows. Some of their footwear were even lost. - TC ordered (a) defendant-appellants Custodios and Santoses to give plaintiff permanent access ingress and egress, to the public street; (b) the plaintiff to pay defendants Custodios and Santoses P8,000 as indemnity for the permanent use of the passageway. - Private respondents, went to CA raising the sole issue of WON lower court erred in not awarding damages in their favor. CA affirming TC judgment with modification, awarding damages to plaintiffs (P65K as actual damages, P30K as moral damages and P10K as exemplary damages). Mfr denied. Hence this appeal. ISSUES 1. WON the grant of right of way to herein private respondents is proper 2. WON CA erred in awarding damages to plaintiff-appellee Mabasa HELD 1. Ratio Whenever an appeal is taken in a civil case, an appellee who has not himself appealed may not obtain from the appellate court any affirmative relief other than what was granted in the decision of the lower court Reasoning - Petitioners are already barred from raising the same. Petitioners did not appeal from the decision of the court a quo granting private respondents the right of way, hence they are presumed to be satisfied with the adjudication

THE CONCEPT OF QUASIDELICT


GARCIA V FLORIDO [CITATION] ANTONIO; [DATE]
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

CUSTODIO V CA (Heirs Of Mabasa)

torts & damages


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 quasidelict 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

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- 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, 620-621). - 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.

- 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 quasidelict 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

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

torts & damages


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 quasi-delicts 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

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- 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, 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 quasidelicts or culpa extra-contractual. 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.

- 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 quasi-delict 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 1 of 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.
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.
1

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

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.
2

torts & damages


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 quasicontracts, 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

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- 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.

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.

TAYAG V ALCANTARA 98 SCRA 723 CONCEPCION; July 23, 1980


NATURE

torts & damages


Petition for review on certiorari the order of CFI Tarlac (dismissing petition for damages) FACTS - Pedro Tayag was riding a motorcycle when he was bumped by a Philippine Rabbit Bus, driven by Romeo Villa, which caused his instantaneous death. Pending the criminal case against the driver, the heirs of Tayag instituted a civil action to recover damages from the company (Phil Rabbit Bus Inc) and the driver. In turn, the company and driver filed a motion to suspend trial of the civil case on the ground that the criminal case was still pending. Judge Alcantara granted this motion. - In the criminal case, the driver as acquitted based on reasonable doubt. The company and driver then filed for dismissal of the civil case on the ground that the heirs do not have a cause of action because of the acquittal. Judge Alcantara granted this and dismissed the civil case. ISSUE WON Judge Alcantara correctly dismissed the civil case on the ground of no cause of action due to the acquittal of the driver HELD 1. NO Ratio The petitioners' cause of action being based on a quasi-delict, the acquittal of the driver of the crime charged is not a bar to the prosecution for damages based on quasi-delict Reasoning - Art. 31, NCC provides: When the civil action is based on an obligation not arising from the act or omission complained of as a felony, such civil action may proceed independently of the criminal proceedings and regardless of the result of the latter - Evidently, this provision refers to a civil action based on an obligation arising from quasi-delict. The complaint itself shows that the claim was based on quasi-delit, viz: 6. That defendant Philippine Rabbit Bus Lino, Inc., has failed to exercise the diligence of a good father of a family in the selection and supervision of its employees, particularly defendant Romeo Villa y Cunanan. Otherwise, the accident in question which resulted in the death of Pedro Tayag, Sr. and damage to his property would not have occurred; All the essential averments for a quasi-delictual action are present: (1) act or omission constituting fault /negligence on the part of respondent (2) damage caused by the said act or omission (3) direct causal relation between the damage and the act or omission and (4) no preexisting contractual relation between the parties. Citing Elcano v Hill: a separate civil action lies against the offender in a criminal act, WON he is criminally prosecuted and found guilty or acquitted, provided that offended party is not allowed to recover damages on both scores DISPOSITION petition granted. Order of CFI Tarlac set aside, case REMANDED to lower court for further proceedings.

A2010

-9-

prof. casis
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

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 from criminal negligence, but for damages due to a quasi-delict or culpa aquiliana". Article 33 of the Civil Code also justifies the petitioners' independent civil action for damages since the term "physical injuries" therein embraces death (Dyogi vs. Yatco, 100 Phil. 1095). - Moreover, the acquittal of Romeo Villa was based on reasonable doubt. The petitioners, as plaintiffs in the civil case, can amend their complaint and base their action also on article 29 NCC which allows an independent civil action for damages in case of acquittal on the ground of reasonable doubt. - The requirement in section 2, Rule III of the Rules of Court that there should be a reservation in the criminal cases of the right to institute an independent civil action is contrary to law.

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 ownertype 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

SEPARATE OPINION AQUINO [concur]


- I concur because petitioners' action for damages is based on article 2177 of the Civil Code, under which according to the Code Commission, "acquittal

torts & damages


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?

A2010

- 10 282 SCRA 188 FRANCISCO; 1997

prof. casis

DISPOSITION Appellant acquitted for the crime of robbery and homicide, but sentenced to indemnify the heirs of Jose Rosales y Ortiz.

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.

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

CRUZ V CA (UMALI)

torts & damages


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. NATURE Petition for Review

A2010

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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

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 accusedemployee, 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 accused-employee, 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.

PHIL. RABBIT V PEOPLE [citation] PANGANIBAN; April 14, 2004

CANGCO V MANILA RAILROAD CO 38 Phil 768 FISHER; October 14, 1918

torts & damages


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

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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.

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 extra-contractual 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

SEPARATE OPINION MALCOLM, [dissent]


- With one sentence in the majority decision, we are of full accord, namely, "It may be admitted that had plaintiff waited until the train had come to a full stop before alighting, the particular injury suffered by him could not have occurred." With the general rule relative to a passenger's contributory negligence, we are likewise in full accord, namely, "An attempt to alight from a moving train is negligence per se." Adding these two points together, we have the logical result - the Manila Railroad Co. should be absolved from the complaint, and judgment affirmed.

FORES V MIRANDA [citation] 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.

torts & damages


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

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- Damages are awarded to petitioner at Php5,000, deducting Php 2,500, the amount fairly attributable to his own negligence.

M.H. RAKES V THE ATLANTIC, GULF AND PACIFIC COMPANY 7 Phil 359 TRACEY; January 23, 1907
NATURE Action for damages FACTS - the plaintiff, Rakes, one of a group of 8 African-American laborers in the employment of defendant, Atlantic, was at work transporting iron rails from the harbor in Manila. The men were hauling the rails on 2 hand cars, some behind or at it sides and some pulling the cars in the front by a rope. At one point, the track sagged, the tie broke, the car canted and the rails slid off and caught the plaintiff who was walking by the cars side, breaking his leg, which was later amputated at the knee. - the plaintiffs witness alleged that a noticeable depression in the track had appeared after a typhoon. This was reported to the foreman, Mckenna, but it had not been proven that Atlantic inspected the track or had any proper system of inspection. Also, there were no side guards on the cars to keep the rails from slipping off. - However, the companys officers and 3 of the workers testified that there was a general prohibition frequently made known to all against walking by the side of cars. As Rakes was walking along the cars side when the accident occurred, he was found to have contributed in some degree to the injury inflicted, although not as the primary cause. - Atlantic contends that the remedy for injury through negligence lies only in a criminal action against the official directly responsible and that the employer be held only subsidiarily liable. ISSUES 1. WON Atlantic is only subsidiarily liable 2. WON there was contributory negligence on the part of petitioner and if so, WON it bars him from recovery HELD 1. NO - By virtue of culpa contractual, Atlantic may be held primarily liable as it failed in its duty to provide safe appliances for the use of its employees. Petitioner need not file charges with the foreman to claim damages from Atlantic; a criminal action is not a requisite for the enforcement of a civil action. 2. YES - Petitioner had walked along the side of the car despite a prohibition to do so by the foreman. However, the contributory negligence of the party injured will not defeat the action if it be shown that the defendant might, by the exercise of reasonable care and prudence, have avoided the consequences of the injured party's negligence. Petitioners negligence contributed only to his own injury and not to the principal occurrenceit was merely an element to the damage caused upon him. Had it been otherwise, parties being mutually in fault, there can be no appointment of damages. The law has no scales to determine in such cases whose wrongdoing weighed most in the compound that occasioned the mischief (Railroad v Norton). In this case, petitioner may recover from the defendant, less a sum deemed suitable equivalent for his own imprudence.

SEPARATE OPINION WILLARD AND CARSON [dissent]


-the negligence of the defendant alone was insufficient to cause the accidentit also required the negligence of the plaintiff. Because of this, plaintiff should not be afforded relief

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.

torts & damages


- 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

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- 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 pre-existing 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 quasidelicts, such damages are granted if the defendant is shown to have been so guilty of gross negligence as to approximate malice. In contracts and quasicontracts, 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.

- 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 nonperformance 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.

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

torts & damages


- 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.

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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 air-carrier 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 quasi-contracts. 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

- 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 Bangkok-Teheran 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

torts & damages


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.

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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.

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 pre-existing 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

PSBA V CA [citation] 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.

NEGLIGENCE
PICART V SMITH [citation] STREET; March 15, 1918
NATURE Appeal from a judgment of the CFI of La Union FACTS

torts & damages


- On December 12, 1912, plaintiff was riding on his pony over the Carlatan Bridge, at San Fernando, La Union. - Before he had gotten half way across, the defendant approached from the opposite direction in an automobile, going at the rate of about ten or twelve miles per hour. - As the defendant neared the bridge he saw the plaintiff and blew his horn to give warning of his approach. - He continued his course and after he had taken the bridge, he gave two more successive blasts, as it appeared to him that the man on horseback before him was not observing the rule of the road. - The plaintiff saw the automobile coming and heard the warning signals. - However, given the novelty of the apparition and the rapidity of the approach, he pulled the pony closely up against the railing on the right side of the bridge instead of going to the left. - He did this because he thought he did not have sufficient time to get over to the other side. - As the automobile approached, the defendant guided it toward his left, that being the proper side of the road for the machine. - In so doing the defendant assumed that the horseman would move to the other side. - The pony had not as yet exhibited fright, and the rider had made no sign for the automobile to stop. - Seeing that the pony was apparently quiet, the defendant, instead of veering to the right while yet some distance away or slowing down, continued to approach directly toward the horse without diminution of speed. - When he had gotten quite near, there being then no possibility of the horse getting across to the other side, the defendant quickly turned his car sufficiently to the right to escape hitting the horse alongside of the railing where it as then standing; but in so doing the automobile passed in such close proximity to the animal that it became frightened and turned its body across the bridge with its head toward the railing. - In so doing, it was struck on the hock of the left hind leg by the flange of the car and the limb was broken. - The horse fell and its rider was thrown off with some violence. - As a result of its injuries the horse died. - The plaintiff received contusions which caused temporary unconsciousness and required medical attention for several days. - CFI absolved defendant from liability - Hence, the appeal ISSUE WON the defendant, in maneuvering his car in the manner above described, was guilty of negligence that would give rise to a civil obligation to repair the damage done HELD YES - As the defendant started across the bridge, he had the right to assume that the horse and the rider would pass over to the proper side; but as he moved toward the center of the bridge it was demonstrated to his eyes that this would not be done; and he must in a moment have perceived that it was too late for the horse to cross with safety in front of the moving vehicle. - In the nature of things this change of situation occurred while the automobile was yet some distance away; and from this moment it was no longer within the power of the plaintiff to escape being run down by going to a place of greater safety.

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- 17 [citation] CARSON; March 22, 1910

prof. casis

- The control of the situation had then passed entirely to the defendant; and it was his duty either to bring his car to an immediate stop or, seeing that there were no other persons on the bridge, to take the other side and pass sufficiently far away from the horse to avoid the danger of collision. - The defendant ran straight on until he was almost upon the horse. He was, the court thinks, deceived into doing this by the fact that the horse had not yet exhibited fright. - But in view of the known nature of horses, there was an appreciable risk that, if the animal in question was unacquainted with automobiles, he might get excited and jump under the conditions which here confronted him. - When the defendant exposed the horse and rider to this danger, he was, in our opinion, negligent in the eye of the law. - The test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular case may be stated as follows: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. - The law here in effect adopts the standard supposed to be supplied by the imaginary conduct of the discreet paterfamilias of the Roman law. - The existence of negligence in a given case is not determined by reference to the personal judgment of the actor in the situation before him. The law considers what would be reckless, blameworthy, or negligent in the man of ordinary intelligence and prudence and determines liability by that. - The question as to what would constitute the conduct of a prudent man in a given situation must of course be always determined in the light of human experience and in view of the facts involved in the particular case. Could a prudent man, in the case under consideration, foresee harm as a result of the course actually pursued? If so, it was the duty of the actor to take precautions to guard against that harm. Reasonable foresight of harm, followed by ignoring of the suggestion born of this prevision, is always necessary before negligence can be held to exist. - Stated in these terms, the proper criterion for determining the existence of negligence in a given case is this: Conduct is said to be negligent when a prudent man in the position of the tortfeasor would have foreseen that an effect harmful to another was sufficiently probable to warrant his foregoing conduct or guarding against its consequences. - Applying this test to the conduct of the defendant in the present case, negligence is clearly established. A prudent man, placed in the position of the defendant, would have recognized that the course which he was pursuing was fraught with risk, and would therefore have foreseen harm to the horse and the rider as reasonable consequence of that course. Under these circumstances the law imposed on the defendant the duty to guard against the threatened harm. - The plaintiff himself was not free from fault, for he was guilty of antecedent negligence in planting himself on the wrong side of the road. It will be noted however, that the negligent acts of the two parties were not contemporaneous, since the negligence of the defendant succeeded the negligence of the plaintiff by an appreciable interval. Under these circumstances the law is that the person who has the last fair chance to avoid the impending harm and fails to do so is chargeable with the consequences, without reference to the prior negligence of the other party. DISPOSITION Appealed decision is reversed.

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. Its power plant is situated at the eastern end of a small island in the Pasig River within the city of Manila, known as the Isla del Provisor. The power plant may be reached by boat or by crossing a footbridge, impassable for vehicles, at the westerly end of the island. - The plaintiff, David Taylor, was at the same 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 of the Isla del Provisor, for the purpose of visiting one Murphy, an employee of the defendant, who had 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. The visit made on a Sunday afternoon, and it does not appear that they saw or spoke to anyone after leaving the power house where they had asked for Mr. Murphy. - After watching the operation of the traveling crane used in handling the defendant's coal, they walked across the open space in the neighborhood of the place where the company dumped the cinders and ashes from its furnaces. Here they found some twenty or thirty brass fulminating caps scattered on the ground. These caps are approximately of the size and appearance of small pistol cartridges and each has attached to it two long thin wires by means of which it may be discharged by the use of electricity. They are intended for use in the explosion of blasting charges of dynamite, and have in themselves considerable explosive power. After some discussion as to the ownership of caps, and their right to take them, the boys picked up all they could find, hung them of a stick, of which each took one end, and carried them home. After crossing the footbridge, they met a little girl named Jessie Adrian, less than 9 years old, and all three went to the home of the boy Manuel. The boys then made a series of experiments with the caps. They thrust the ends of the wires into an electric light socket and obtained no result. They next tried to break the cap with a stone and failed. Manuel looked for a hammer, but could not find one. They then 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 purring 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 necessitate its removal by the surgeons who were called in to care for his wounds.

TAYLOR V MANILA RAILROAD

torts & damages


- The Defendant Companys defense that the caps were under the duty of independent contractors deserves scant consideration since these workers have been under the supervision of one of the companys foremen. - Plaintiff Taylor appears to have rested his case, as did the trial judge his decision in plaintiff's favor, 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 quasicontracts, and by illicit acts and omissions or by those in which any kind of fault or negligence occurs." - "ART. 1902. Any 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 omission, 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 alive with them. xxx xxx xxx "Owners or directors of an establishment or enterprises are equally liable for the damages caused by their employees in the service of the branches in which the latter may be employed or on account of their duties. xxx xxx xxx "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 be also be liable for the damages caused "1. By the explosion of machines which may not have been cared for with due diligence, and for kindling of explosive substance which may not have been placed in a safe and proper place." - In support of his contention, counsel for plaintiff relied on the doctrine laid down in many of the courts of last result in the United States in the cases known as the "Torpedo" and "Turntable" cases, and the cases based thereon.In the typical cases, the question involved has been whether a railroad company is liable for an injury received by an infant of tender years, who from mere idle curiosity, or for purposes of amusement, enters upon the railroad company's premises, at a place where the railroad company's premises, at a place where the railroad company knew, or had a good reason to suppose, children who would likely to come, and there found explosive signal torpedoes left exposed by the railroad company's employees, one of which when carried away by the visitor, exploded and injured him; or where such infant found upon the premises a dangerous machine, such as a turntable left in such condition as to make it probable that children in playing with it would be exposed to accident or injury therefrom and where the infant did in fact suffer injury in playing with such machine. In these, and in a great variety of similar cases, the great weight of authority holds the owner of the premises liable. - 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 an injury received by an infant while upon its premises, from idle curiosity, or for purposed of amusement, if such injury was, under the circumstances, attributable to the negligence of the company), the principles on which these cases turn are that "while 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

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- Just because the kids trespassed doesnt mean that the company is not liable for anything bad that might happen to them. However, we also have to look at the proximate cause and the maturity of the plaintiff if it was his negligence that contributed to the principal occurrence of the tragedy. In the case at bar, the Court said that it is of the 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 plaintiff's action in cutting open the detonating cap and putting a 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. "While it is the general rule in regard to an adult that 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 circumstance of the case." - As regards the maturity of the child, this has to be examined on a case-tocase basis. In the case at bar, plaintiff at the time of the accident was 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. The evidence of record leaves no room for doubt that, despite his denials on the witness stands, he well knew the explosive character of the cap with which he was amusing himself. The series of experiments made by him in his attempt to produce an explosion, as described by the little girl who was present, admit of no other explanation. His attempt to discharge the cap by the use of electricity, followed by his efforts to explode it with a stone or a hammer, and the final success of his endeavors brought about by the applications of a match to the contents of the cap, show clearly that he knew what he was about. Nor can there be any reasonable doubt that he had reason to anticipate that the explosion might be dangerous, in view of the fact that the little girl, 9 years of age, who was with him at the time when he put the match to the contents of the cap, became frightened and ran away. - We think it is quite clear that under the doctrine thus stated, the immediate cause of the explosion , the accident which resulted in plaintiff's injury, was his own act of putting a match to the contents of the cap, and that having "contributed to the principal occurrence, as one of its determining factors, he can not recover." DISPOSITION The petition is DISMISSED.

same rule which governs that of an 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 such case by the circumstances of the case." - The doctrine of the case of Railroad Company vs. Stout was vigorously controverted and sharply criticized in severally state courts, saying that (1) That the owner of land is not liable to trespassers thereon for injuries sustained by them, not due to his wanton or willful acts; (2) that no exception to this rule exists in favor of children who are injured by dangerous machinery naturally calculated to attract them to the premises; (3) that an invitation of license to cross the premises of another can not be predicated on the mere fact that no steps have been taken to interfere with such practice; (4) that there is no difference between children and adults of an invitation or a license to enter upon another's premises. However, after an exhaustive and critical analysis and review of may of the adjudged cases, both English and America, formally declared that it adhered "to the principles announced in the case of Railroad Co. vs. Stout." Chief Justice Cooley, voicing the opinion of the supreme court of Michigan, in the case of Powers vs. Marlow, said that: Children, wherever they go, must be expected to act upon childlike instincts and impulses; and others who are chargeable with a duty of care and caution toward them must calculate upon this, and take precautions accordingly. If they leave exposed to the observation of children anything which would be tempting to them, and which they in their immature judgment might naturally suppose they were at liberty to handle or play with, they should expect that liberty to be taken." - The owners of premises, therefore, whereon things attractive to children are exposed, or upon which the public are expressively or impliedly permitted to enter to or upon which the owner knows or ought to know children are likely to roam about for pastime and in play, "must calculate upon this, and take precautions accordingly." In such cases the owner of the premises can not be heard to say that because the child has entered upon his premises without his express permission he is a trespasser to whom the owner owes no duty or obligation whatever. The owner's failure to take reasonable precautions to prevent the child form entering premises at a place where he knows or ought to know that children are accustomed to roam about or to which their childish instincts and impulses are likely to attract them is at least equivalent to an implied license to enter, and where the child does not enter under such conditions the owner's failure to make reasonable precaution to guard the child against the injury from unknown or unseen dangers, placed upon such premises by the owner, is clearly a breach of duty, a negligent omission, for which he may and should be held responsible, if the child is actually injured, without other fault on its part than that it had entered on the premises of a stranger without his express invitation or permission. To hold otherwise would be expose to all the children in the community to unknown perils and unnecessary danger at the whim of the owners or occupants of land upon which they might naturally and reasonably be expected to enter. ISSUE 1. WON the defendants negligence was the proximate cause of the injuries, making the company liable HELD 1. NO

JARCO MARKETING CORP V CA (AGUILAR) DAVIDE; December 21, 1999


FACTS - Petitioner Jarco Marketing Corporation is the owner of Syvel's Department Store, Makati City. Petitioners Leonardo Kong, Jose Tiope and Elisa Panelo are the store's branch manager, operations manager, and supervisor, respectively. Private respondents are spouses and the parents of Zhieneth Aguilar.

torts & damages


- On May 9, 1983, Criselda and Zhieneth were at the 2 nd flr or Syvels Dept. Store. Criselda momentarily let go of her daughters hand to sign her credit card slip at the payment and verification counter. She suddenly felt a gust of wind and heard a loud thud. She looked behind her and saw her daughter on the floor, pinned by the gift-wrapping counter. Zhieneth was crying and screaming for help. Criselda was able to ask people to help her and bring her daughter to the hospital. - She was operated on immediately at the hospital. Gonzales, a former employee of Syvels Dept Store who helped bring Zhieneth to the hospital, heard her tell the doctor that she nothing. I did not come near the counter and the counter just fell on me, when asked what did you do? She died 14 days later, on the hospital bed. She was 6 years old. The cause of her death was attributed to the injuries she sustained. - After the burial of their daughter, the Aguilars demanded from the petitioners the reimbursement of hospital and medical bills, and wake and funeral expenses. Petitioners refused to pay. So the Aguilars filed a complaint for damages wherein they sought the payment of P157,522.86 for actual damages, P300,000 for moral damages, P20,000 for attorney's fees and an unspecified amount for loss of income and exemplary damages. - RTC for Jarco Marketing Corp, et al. RTC mfr for the Aguilars. CA and CA mfr for the Aguilars. - Jarco Mktg Corp, et als side: Criselda was negligent in taking care of her daughter for allowing her to roam freely. Zhieneth was guilty of contributory negligence because she tried to climb the counter. The counter was made of sturdy wood with a strong base and was used without incident for the past 15 years. It was deliberately placed at a corner to avoid such accidents. The testimony of two former employees, Gonzales and Guevarra, should not be believed because he might have ill feelings towards petitioners. The testimony of the present employees (that Zhieneth climbed the counter so it fell) should instead be believed. - The Aguilars side: While in the dept store, Criselda never let go of her daughter except to sign the credit card slip. Gonzales testified that the gift wrapping counter was right beside the verification counter where Criselda was signing. Both Gonzales and Guevarra testified to the structural instability and shakiness of the counter which is in the shape of and inverted L, with a base smaller than the top. The protruding part of the counter was at the costumer side. They both had informed management (while they were still working there) that the counter should be nailed to the floor. The management did nothing. ISSUE 1. WON the incident is accident or attributable to negligence 2. If negligence, who was negligent? HELD 1. NEGLIGENCE. - An accident pertains to an unforeseen event in which no fault or negligence attaches to the defendant. It is "a fortuitous circumstance, event or happening; an event happening without any human agency, or if happening wholly or partly through human agency, an event which under the circumstances is unusual or unexpected by the person to whom it happens." - On the other hand, negligence is the omission to do something which a reasonable man, guided by those considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs, would do, or the doing of something which a prudent and reasonable man would not do. Negligence is "the failure to observe, for the protection of the interest of another person, that degree of

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No contributory negligence from Criselda - CRISELDA too, should be absolved from any contributory negligence. Initially, ZHIENETH held on to CRISELDA's waist, later to the latter's hand. CRISELDA momentarily released the child's hand from her clutch when she signed her credit card slip. At this precise moment, it was reasonable and usual for CRISELDA to let go of her child. Further, at time ZHIENETH was pinned down by the counter, she was just a foot away from her mother; and the gift-wrapping counter was just four meters away from CRISELDA. The time and distance were both significant. ZHIENETH was near her mother and did not loiter as petitioners would want to impress upon us. She even admitted to the doctor who treated her at the hospital that she did not do anything; the counter just fell on her. Disposition The instant petition is DENIED and the challenged decision of the Court of Appeals is hereby AFFIRMED

care, precaution and vigilance which the circumstances justly demand, whereby such other person suffers injury." - Accident and negligence are intrinsically contradictory; one cannot exist with the other. Accident occurs when the person concerned is exercising ordinary care, which is not caused by fault of any person and which could not have been prevented by any means suggested by common prudence. - The test in determining the existence of negligence is enunciated in the landmark case of Picart v. Smith, thus: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinary prudent person would have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. - Gonzales testimony about what Zhieneth said to the doctor should be accepted because at the time she said it, she was in so much pain and she answered right away. This means she wasnt making it up. It is axiomatic that matters relating to declarations of pain or suffering and statements made to a physician are generally considered declarations and admissions. All that is required for their admissibility as part of the res gestae is that they be made or uttered under the influence of a startling event before the declarant had the time to think and concoct a falsehood as witnessed by the person who testified in court. Under the circumstances thus described, it is unthinkable for ZHIENETH, a child of such tender age and in extreme pain, to have lied to a doctor whom she trusted with her life. We therefore accord credence to Gonzales' testimony on the matter, i.e., ZHIENETH performed no act that facilitated her tragic death. Sadly, petitioners did, through their negligence or omission to secure or make stable the counter's base. 2. JARCO MKTG, ET AL. - Petitioner Panelo and another store supervisor were personally informed of the danger posed by the unstable counter. Yet, neither initiated any concrete action to remedy the situation nor ensure the safety of the store's employees and patrons as a reasonable and ordinary prudent man would have done. Thus, as confronted by the situation petitioners miserably failed to discharge the due diligence required of a good father of a family. No contributory negligence from Zhieneth - The conclusive presumption favors children below nine (9) years old in that they are incapable of contributory negligence. In our jurisdiction, a person under nine years of age is conclusively presumed to have acted without discernment, and is, on that account, exempt from criminal liability. The same presumption and a like exemption from criminal liability obtains in a case of a person over nine and under fifteen years of age, unless it is shown that he has acted with discernment. Since negligence may be a felony and a quasidelict and required discernment as a condition of liability, either criminal or civil, a child under nine years of age is, by analogy, conclusively presumed to be incapable of negligence; and that the presumption of lack of discernment or incapacity for negligence in the case of a child over nine but under fifteen years of age is a rebuttable one, under our law. The rule, therefore, is that a child under nine years of age must be conclusively presumed incapable of contributory negligence as a matter of law. (Sangco) - Even if we attribute contributory negligence to ZHIENETH and assume that she climbed over the counter, no injury should have occurred if we accept petitioners' theory that the counter was stable and sturdy. For if that was the truth, a frail six-year old could not have caused the counter to collapse. The physical analysis of the counter by both the trial court and Court of Appeals and a scrutiny of the evidence on record reveal that it was not durable after all. Shaped like an-inverted "L" the counter was heavy, huge, and its top laden with formica. It protruded towards the customer waiting area and its base was not secured.

MAGTIBAY V TIANGCO 74 Phil 756 BOCOBO; February 28, 1944


NATURE Appeal from a judgment of the Court of First Instance Batangas FACTS - Defendant-appellant Tiangco, a minor under 18 years of age, pleaded guilty to an information for homicide through reckless negligence in that he had recklessly driven an automobile and thereby caused the death of Magtibay, of whom plaintiffs-appellees are the lawful heirs. The Court of First Instance (CFI) Batangas found Tiangco guilty as charged, but as he was under 18 years of age, the sentence was suspended, and he was committed to the care and custody of Atty. Abaya, until Tiangco would reach his majority, subject to the supervision of the Superintendent of Public Schools of the Province. Subsequently, Abaya, in view of Tiangcos good conduct recommended the dismissal of the case. The CFI dismissed the criminal case, but reserved such right as the heirs of the deceased might have to recover damages in a civil action against said Tiangco. Accordingly, the civil action in the instant case was filed against defendant-appellant for damages in the sum of P2,000 for the death of Magtibay. The CFI gave judgment for plaintiffs for P2,000 as damages. Hence this appeal. ISSUE WON the suspension of the sentence under Art. 80 of the RPC, after appellant had pleaded guilty, exonerated him from the crime charged HELD NO - The suspension of the sentence under Art.80 of the Revised Penal Code, after appellant herein had pleaded guilty, did not wipe out his guilt, but merely put off the imposition of the corresponding penalty, in order to give the delinquent minor a chance to be reformed. When, therefore, after he had observed good conduct, the criminal case was dismissed, this did not mean that he was exonerated from the crime charged, but simply that he would suffer no penalty. Nor did such dismissal of the criminal case obliterate his civil liability for damages. Liability of an infant for his torts is imposed as a mode, not of punishment, but of compensation. If property has been destroyed or other loss occasioned by a wrongful act, it is just that the loss

torts & damages


should upon the estate of the wrongdoer rather than that of a guiltless person, and that without reference to the question of moral guilt. Consequently, for every tortuous act of violence or other pure tort, the infant tort-feasor is liable in a civil action to the injured person in the same manner and to the same extent as an adult. DISPOSITION Judgment affirmed.

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not subject to criminal prosecution for the act complained of, the question assumes a vastly different aspect. - There should be a distinction between the civil liability of an ordinary person who, by wrongful act, has caused the death of another; and the civil liability of a corporation, organized primarily for profit, which has caused the death of a person by failure to exercise due care in the prosecution of its business. - The liability of such a corporation for damages must be regarded as a part of the risks which it assumes when it undertakes to promote its own business; and just as it is entitled to earn adequate profits from its business, so it should be made adequately to compensate those who have suffered damage by its negligence.

DEL ROSARIO V MANILA ELECTRIC CO. 57 PHIL 478 STREET; November 5, 1932
FACTS ***This action was instituted by Julian del Rosario for the purpose of recovering damages from Meralco for the death of his son, Alberto, resulting from a shock from a wire used by the defendant for the transmission of electricity. - Aug 4, 1930 2pm: a wire used by the defendant on Dimas- Alang St for the purpose of conducting electricity used in lighting the City of Manila and its suburbs. - Jose Noguera saw that the wire was burning and its connections smoking. One of the ends of the wire fell to the ground among some shrubbery close to the way. - As soon as Noguera took cognizance of the trouble, he stepped into a garage which was located nearby and asked Jose Soco to telephone the Malabon station of MERALCO that an electrical wire was burning at that place. - Soco transmitted the message at 2.25 p.m. and received answer from the station to the effect that they would send an inspector. - At the time that message was sent the wire had not yet parted, but from the testimony of Demetrio Bingao, one of the witnesses for the defense, it is clear that the end of the wire was on the ground shortly after 3 p.m. - At 4 p. m. the neighborhood school was dismissed and the children went home. - Alberto del Rosario, 9 yrs old, who was a few paces ahead of his classmates, Jose Salvador and Saturnino Endrina, all members of the second grade in the public school. - As the three neared the place where the wire was down, Saturnino made a motion as if it touch it. - Jose, who happened to be the son of an electrician, knew never to touch a broken electrical wire (as his dad told him so!)- stopped Saturnino- telling him that the wire might be charged. - Saturnino yielded to this admonition and stopped, but Alberto, who was somewhat ahead, said, I have for some time been in the habit of touching wires. - Jose rejoined that he should into touch wires as they carry a current, but Alberto, no doubt feeling that he was challenged in the matter, put out his index finger and touch the wire. - He immediately fell face downwards, exclaiming "Ay! madre". - The end of the wire remained in contact with his body which fell near the post. - A crowd soon collected, and some one cut the wire and disengaged the body. Upon being taken to St. Luke's Hospital the child was pronounced dead.

- The wire was an ordinary number 6 triple braid weather proof wire, such as is commonly used by the defendant company for the purpose of conducting electricity for lighting. - The wire was cased in the usual covering, but this had been burned off for some distance from the point where the wire parted. - The engineer of the company says that it was customary for the company to make a special inspection of these wires at least once in six months, and that all of the company's inspectors were required in their daily rounds to keep a lookout for trouble of this kind. - There is nothing in the record indicating any particular cause for the parting of the wire.l ISSUE WON Manila Electric is liable HELD YES Reasoning - When notice was received at the Malabon station at 2.25 p. m., somebody should have been dispatched to the scene of the trouble at once, or other measures taken to guard the point of danger; but more than an 1 hours passed before anyone from MERALCO appeared on the scene, and in the meantime Alberto had been claimed as a victim. - The mere fact that the deceased ignored the caution of Jose (8 yrs old), doesnt alter the case. - But even supposing that contributory negligence could in some measure be properly imputed to the deceased, such negligence would not be wholly fatal to the right of action in this case, not having been the determining cause of the accident. (Rakes vs. Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific Co., 7 Phil., 359.) - With respect to the amount of damages recoverable, Julian is entitled to recover P250 for expenses incurred in connection with the death and burial of the boy. - Citing Astudillo vs. Manila Electric Company: Julian should recover the sum of P1,000 as general damages for loss of service. Disposition judgment reversed

YLARDE V AQUINO [citation] GANCAYCO; July 29, 1988


NATURE Petition for review on certiorari FACTS - Soriano was principal. Aquino was a teacher. The school was littered with concrete blocks. Teacher Banez started burying them. Aquino gathered 18 male pupils to help. He ordered them to dig. Work was unfinished. - Ff day, Aquino called 4 of the 18 to continue. Aquino continued digging while the pupils remained inside the pit throwing out the loose soil. Aquino left the children to level the loose soil and borrowed a key from Banez. Aquino told the kids not to touch the stone. - 3 of the 4 kids jumped into the pit. The remaining Abaga jumped on the concrete block causing it to slide down. 2 were able to escape but student Ylarde sustained injuries. 3 days later he died. Parents filed suit against Aquino and Soriano. Lower court dismissed and CA affirmed and said child Ylarde was negligent. ISSUE WON Aquino and Soriano can be held liable for damages HELD - Principal Soriano cannot be held liable, being head of academic school and not school of arts and trades, in line with Amadora case and Art 2180 of Civil Code. It is only the teacher who should answer for torts committed by their students. Besides, Soriano did not order the digging. - Based on Article 2180, Aquino can be held liable. However, petition is based on Article 2176. Did the acts/omissions of Aquino cause the death of Ylarde? Yes. He is liable for damages. The work required adult laborers. He required the children to remain in the pit after they finished digging. He ordered them to level the soil when a huge stone was at brink of falling. He went to another place and left the kids. - Left by themselves, IT WAS BUT NATURAL FOR THE CHILDREN TO PLAY AROUND. IN RULING THAT YLARDE WAS IMPRUDENT, THE LOWER COURT DID NOT CONSIDER HIS AGE AND MATURITY. A MINOR SHOULD NOT BE HELD TO THE SAME DEGREE OF CARE AS AN ADULT. - Aquino also said the digging was part of Work Education. This is unacceptable. Work is too dangerous and it was not even in the lesson plan.

SEPARATE OPINION ABAD SANTOS [concur in part and dissent in part] - He concurs that MERALCO is held liable for the death of Alberto, but
dissents in so far as the decision allows the recovery of the father of the sum of P1,250 only as damages. It should be P 2250. - His reasoning: It is well settled in this jurisdiction that an action will lie to recover damages for death caused by the wrongful act. (Manzanares vs. Moreta, 38 Phil., 821.) - In criminal cases- indemnity to the heirs of the deceased is equivalent to P1,000 - Whatever may be the reasons for the rule followed in criminal cases, I am of the opinion that those reasons do not obtain in fixing the amount of the damages recoverable in the present case. - The indemnity allowed in criminal case is merely incidental to the main object sought, which is the punishment of the guilty party. - In a civil action, the principal object is the recovery of damages for wrongful death; and where, as in this case, the defendant is a corporation,

torts & damages


CULION ICE, FISH AND ELECTRIC CO V PHILIPPINE MOTORS CORPORATION [citation] STREET; November 3, 1930
NATURE Appeal from decision of the CFI FACTS - Cranston was the representative of the plaintiff in Manila and plaintiff was the registered owner of the motor schooner Gwendoline. - Cranston decided to have the engine on the Gwendoline changed from a gasoline consumer to a crude oil burner. He had a conference with Quest, Phil. Motors manager, who agreed to do the job, with the understanding that payment should be made upon completion of the work. - The work was begun and conducted under the supervision of Quest, chiefly by a mechanic whom Quest took with him to the boat. Quest had the assistance of the members of the crew of the Gwendoline, who had been directed by Cranston to place themselves under Quest's directions. - Upon preliminary inspection of the engine, Quest concluded that a new carburetor was needed and thus installed a Zenith carburetor. The engine was tried with gasoline and the result was satisfactory. The next problem was to introduce into the carburetor the baser fuel, consisting of a low grade of oil mixed with distillate. A temporary tank to contain the mixture was placed on deck above and at a short distance from the compartment covering the engine. This tank was connected with the carburetor by a piece of tubing, which was apparently not well fitted at the point where it was connected with the tank. The fuel mixture leaked from the tank and dripped sown into the engine compartment. The new fuel line and that already in use between the gasoline tank and carburetor were so fixed that it was possible to change from the gasoline fuel to the mixed fuel. This arrangement enables the operator to start the engine on gasoline and then, after the engine had been operating for a few moments, to switch to the new fuel supply. - It was observed that the carburetor was flooding, and that the gasoline, or other fuel, was trickling freely from the lower part to the carburetor to the floor. This fact was called to Quest's attention, but he said that, when the engine had gotten to running well, the flooding would disappear. - The boat was taken out into the bay for a trial run. The engine stopped a few times during the first part of the course, owing to the use of an improper mixture of fuel. In the course of the trial, Quest remained outside of the engine compartment and occupied himself with making distillate, with a view to ascertaining what proportion of the two elements would give best results in the engine. - As the boat was coming in from this run, the engine stopped, and connection again had to be made with the gasoline line to get a new start. After this had been done the mechanic, or engineer, switched to the tube connecting with the new mixture. A moment later a back fire occurred in the cylinder chamber. This caused a flame to shoot back into the carburetor, and instantly the carburetor and adjacent parts were covered with a mass of flames, which the members of the crew were unable to subdue. The salvage from, the wreck, when sold, brought only the sum of P150. The value of the boat, before the accident occured, as the court found, was P10,000. - CFI gave judgment in favor of the plaintiff to recover of the defendant the sum of P9,850, with interest at 6 per centum per annum from the date of the filing of the complaint, until satisfaction of the judgment, with costs.

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DISPOSITION Judgment appealed from affirmed.

ISSUE WON the loss of the boat is chargeable to the negligence and lack of skill of Quest HELD YES Ratio When a person holds himself out as being competent to do things requiring professional skill, he will be held liable for negligence if he fails to exhibit the care and skill of one ordinarily skilled in the particular work which he attempts to do. Reasoning - The temporary tank in which the mixture was prepared was apparently at too great an elevation from the carburetor, so that when the fuel line was opened, the hydrostatic pressure in the carburetor was greater than the delicate parts of the carburetor could sustain. This was the cause of the flooding of the carburetor; and the result was that; when the back fire occurred, the external parts of the carburetor, already saturated with gasoline, burst into flames, whence the fire was quickly communicated to the highly inflammable material near-by. The leak along the pipe line and the flooding of the carburetor had created a dangerous situation, which a prudent mechanic, versed in repairs of this nature, would have taken precautions to avoid. The back fire may have been due either to the fact that the spark was too advanced or the fuel improperly mixed. - Proof shows that Quest had had ample experience in fixing the engines of automobiles and tractors, but it does not appear that he was experienced in the doing of similar work on boats. Possibly the dripping of the mixture form the tank on deck and the flooding of the carburetor did not convey to his mind an adequate impression of the danger of fire. Quest did not use the skill that would have been exhibited by one ordinarily expert in repairing gasoline engines on boats. There was here, on the part of Quest, a blameworthy antecedent inadvertence to possible harm, and this constitutes negligence. The burning of the Gwendoline may be said to have resulted from accident, but this accident was in no sense an unavoidable accident. It would not have occured but for Quest's carelessness or lack of skill. The test of liability is not whether the injury was accidental in a sense, but whether Quest was free from blame. - The trial judge seems to have proceeded on the idea that, inasmuch as Quest had control of the Gwendoline during the experimental run, the defendant corporation was in the position of a bailee and that, as a consequence, the burden of proof was on the defendant to exculpate itself from responsibility by proving that the accident was not due to the fault of Quest. As a rule workmen who make repairs on a ship in its owner's yard, or a mechanic who repairs a coach without taking it to his shop, are not bailees, and their rights and liabilities are determined by the general rules of law, under their contract. The true bailee acquires possession and what is usually spoken of as special property in the chattel bailed. As a consequence of such possession and special property, the bailee is given a lien for his compensation. These ideas seem to be incompatible with the situation now under consideration. - This action was instituted about two years after the accident had occured, and after Quest had ceased to be manager and had gone back to the US. Upon these facts, the defendant bases the contention that the action should be considered stale. It is sufficient reply to say that the action was brought within the period limited by the statute of limitations and the situation is not one where the defense of laches can be properly invoked.

NATURE Appeal requiring a construction and an application, for the first time, of the penal provisions of the Pharmacy Law. FACTS - Santiago Pineda is a registered pharmacist of long standing and the owner of a drug store located at Calle Santo Cristo, Manila. Feliciano Santos, having some sick horses, presented a copy of a prescription obtained from Dr. Richardson, and which on other occasions Santos had given to his horses with good results, at Pineda's drug store for filling. The prescription read: "clorato de potasa - 120 gramos - en seis papelitos de 20 gramos, para caballo." Under the supervision of Pineda, the prescription was prepared and returned to Santos in the form of six papers marked, "Botica Pineda - Clorato potasa - 120.00 - en seis papeles - Para caballo- Sto. Cristo , Binondo, Manila." Santos, under the belief that he had purchased the potassium chlorate which he had asked for, put two of the packages in water and gave the doses to two of his sick horses. Another package was mixed with water for another horse, but was not used. The two horses, to which had been given the preparation, died shortly afterwards. Santos, thereupon, took the three remaining packages to the Bureau of Science for examination. Drs. Pea and Darjuan, of the Bureau of Science, found that the packages contained not potassium chlorate but barium chlorate. At the instance of Santos, the two chemists also went to the drug store of the defendant and bought potassium chlorate, which when analyzed was found to be barium chlorate. (Barium chlorate, it should be noted, is a poison; potassium chlorate is not.) Dr. Buencamino, a veterinarian, performed an autopsy on the horses, and found that death was the result of poisoning. ISSUES 1. WON the lower court erred in admitting the testimony of the chemist Pea and Darjuan as to their purchase of potassium chlorate at the drug store of the accused, which proved to be barium chlorate 2. WON the lower court erred in finding that the substance sold by the accused to Feliciano Santos was barium chlorate and not potassium chlorate 3. WON the lower court erred in finding that the accused has been proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of an infraction of the Pharmacy Law, Act No. 597, section 17, as amended HELD 1. NO Ratio On the trial of a criminal case where the question relates to the tendency of certain testimony to throw light upon a particular fact, or to explain the conduct of a particular person, there is a certain discretion on the part of the trial judge which a court of errors will not interfere with, unless it manifestly appear that the testimony has no legitimate bearing upon the question at issue, and is calculated to prejudice the accused. Reasoning - What appellant is relying on is the maxim res inter alios acta. As a general rule, the evidence of other offenses committed by a defendant is

torts & damages


inadmissible. But appellant has confused this maxim and this rule with certain exceptions thereto. The effort is not to convict the accused of a second offense. Nor is there an attempt to draw the mind away from the point at issue and thus to prejudice defendant's case. The purpose is to ascertain defendant's knowledge and intent, and to fix his negligence. If the defendant has on more than one occasion performed similar acts, accident in good faith is possibly excluded, negligence is intensified and fraudulent intent may even be established. It has been said that there is no better evidence of negligence than the frequency of accidents. 2. NO Reasoning The proof demonstrates the contrary. 3. NO Ratio In view of the tremendous and imminent danger to the public from the careless sale of poisons and medicines, we do not deem it too rigid a rule to hold that the law penalizes any druggist who shall sell one drug for another whether it be through negligence or mistake. Reasoning - The care required must be commensurate with the danger involved, and the skill employed must correspond with the superior knowledge of the business which the law demands. - Turning to the law, certain points therein as bearing on our present facts must be admitted. Thus, defendant is a pharmacist. As a pharmacist, he is made responsible for the quality of all drugs and poisons which he sells. And finally it is provided that it shall be unlawful for him to sell any drug or poison under any "fraudulent name." It is the word "fraudulent" which has given the court trouble. What did the Legislature intend to convey by this restrictive adjective? - Were we to adhere to the technical definition of fraud it would be difficult, if not impossible, to convict any druggist of a violation of the law. The prosecution would have to prove to a reasonable degree of certainty that the druggist made a material representation; that it was false; that when he made it he knew that it was false or made it recklessly without any knowledge of its truth and as a positive assertion; that he made it with the intention that it should be acted upon by the purchaser; that the purchaser acted in reliance upon it, and that the purchaser suffered injury. Such a construction with a literal following of well-known principles on the subject of fraud would strip the law of at least much of its force. It would leave the innocent purchaser of drugs, who must blindly trust in the good faith and vigilance of the pharmacist, at the mercy of any unscrupulous vendor. We should not, therefore, without good reason so devitalize the law. - The rule of caveat emptor cannot apply to the purchase and sale of drugs. The vendor and the vendee do not stand at arms length as in ordinary transactions. An imperative duty is on the druggist to take precautions to prevent death or serious injury to anyone who relies on his absolute honesty and peculiar learning. The nature of drugs is such that examination would not avail the purchaser any thing. It would be idle mockery for the customer to make an examination of a compound of which he can know nothing. Consequently, it must be that the druggist warrants that he will deliver the drug called for. - Remembering particularly the care and skill which are expected of druggists, that in some jurisdictions they are liable even for their mistake and in others have the burden placed upon them to establish that they were not negligent, it cannot be that the Philippine Legislature intended to use the word "fraudulent" in all its strictness. A plea of accident and mistake cannot excuse for they cannot take place unless there be wanton and criminal carelessness and neglect. How the misfortune occurs is unimportant, if under

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market placement was to be preterminated and the promissory note (No. 35623) to be preterminated, were sent to Gerlanda E. de Castro and Celestino Sampiton, Jr., Manager and Administrative Assistant, respectively, in BPI's Treasury Operations Department, both authorized signatories for BPI, who signed the two checks that very morning. Thereafter, the checks went to the dispatcher for delivery. - Later in the same morning, however, the same caller changed the delivery instructions; instead of the checks being delivered to her office at Philamlife, she would herself pick up the checks or send her niece, Rosemarie Fernando, to pick them up. Eustaquio then told her that if it were her niece who was going to get the checks, her niece would have to being a written authorization from her to pick up the checks. This telephone conversation ended with the caller's statement that "definitely" it would be her niece, Rosemarie Fernando, who would pick up the checks. Thus, Eustaquio had to hurriedly go to the dispatcher, Bernardo Laderas, to tell him of the new delivery instructions for the checks; in fact, he changed the delivery instruction on the purchase order slip, writing thereon "Rosemarie Fernando release only with authority to pick up. - It was, in fact Rosemarie Fernando who got the two checks from the dispatcher, as shown by the delivery receipt. As it turned out, the same person impersonated both Eligia G. Fernando and Rosemarie Fernando. Although the checks represented the termination proceeds of Eligia G. Fernando's placement, not just a roll-over of the placement, the dispatcher failed to get or to require the surrender of the promissory note evidencing the placement. There is also no showing that Eligia G. Fernando's purported signature on the letter requesting the pretermination and the latter authorizing Rosemarie Fernando to pick up the two checks, both of which letters were presumably handed to the dispatcher by Rosemarie Fernando, was compared or verified with Eligia G. Fernando's signature in BPI's file. Such purported signature has been established to be forged although it has a "close similarity" to the real signature of Eligia G. Fernando. In the afternoon of October 13, 1981, a woman who represented herself to be Eligia G. Fernando applied at China Banking Corporation's Head Office for the opening of a current account. She was accompanied and introduced to Emily Sylianco Cuaso, Cash Supervisor, by Antonio Concepcion whom Cuaso knew to have opened, earlier that year, an account upon the introduction of Valentin Co, a long-standing "valued client" of CBC. What Cuaso indicated in the application form, however, was that the new client was introduced by Valentin Co, and with her initials on the form signifying her approval, she referred the application to the New Accounts Section for processing. As finally proceeds, the application form shows the signature of "Eligia G. Fernando", "her" date of birth, sex, civil status, nationality, occupation ("business woman"), tax account number, and initial deposit of P10,000.00. This final approval of the new current account is indicated on the application form by the initials of Regina G. Dy, Cashier, who did not interview the new client but affixed her initials on the application form after reviewing it. - On October 14, 1981, the woman holding herself out as Eligia G. Fernando deposited the two checks in controversy with Current Account No. 126310-3. Her endorsement on the two checks was found to conform with the depositor's specimen signature. CBC's guaranty of prior endorsements and/or lack of endorsement was then stamped on the two checks, which CBC forthwith sent to clearing and which BPI cleared on the same day. - Two days after, withdrawals began on Current Account No. 26310-3: On October 16, 1981, by means of Check No. 240005 dated the same day for P1,000,000.00, payable to "cash", which the woman holding herself out as Eligia G. Fernando encashed over the counter, and Check No. 240003 dated

all the circumstances the fact of occurrence is attributable to the druggist as a legal fault. Rather considering the responsibility for the quality of drugs which the law imposes on druggists and the position of the word "fraudulent" in juxtaposition to "name," what is made unlawful is the giving of a false name to the drug asked for. This view is borne out by the Spanish translation, which we are permitted to consult to explain the English text. In the Spanish "supuesto" is used, and this word is certainly not synonymous with "fraudulent." The usual badges of fraud, falsity, deception, and injury must be present - but not scienter. Dispositive Judgment of the lower court, sentencing the defendant to pay a fine of P100, with subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency, and to pay the costs, is affirmed with the costs of this instance against the appellant, without prejudice to any civil action which may be instituted.

BPI V CA 216 SCRA 51 GUTIERREZ; November 26, 1992


FACTS - In the afternoon of October 9, 1981, a person purporting to be Eligia G. Fernando, who had a money market placement as evidenced by a promissory note with a maturity date of November 11, 1981 and a maturity value of P2,462,243.19, called BPI's Money Market Department. The caller wanted to preterminate the placement, but Reginaldo Eustaquio, Dealer Trainee in BPI's Money Market Department, told her "trading time" was over for the day, which was a Friday, and suggested that she call again the following week. The promissory note the caller wanted to preterminate was a roll-over of an earlier 50-day money market placement that had matured on September 24, 1981. - Later that afternoon, Eustaquio conveyed the request for pretermination to the officer who before had handled Eligia G. Fernando's account, Penelope Bulan, but Eustaquio was left to attend to the pretermination process. - On October 12, 1981, the caller of the previous Friday followed up with Eustaquio, merely by phone again, on the pretermination of the placement. Although not familiar with the voice of the real Eligia G. Fernando, Eustaquio "made certain" that the caller was the real Eligia G. Fernando by "verifying" that the details the caller gave about the placement tallied with the details in "the ledger/folder" of the account. Eustaquio knew the real Eligia G. Fernando to be the Treasurer of Philippine American Life Insurance Company (Philamlife) since he was handling Philamlife's corporate money market account. But neither Eustaquio nor Bulan who originally handled Fernando's account, nor anybody else at BPI, bothered to call up Fernando at her Philamlife office to verify the request for pretermination. - Informed that the placement would yield less than the maturity value because of its pretermination, the caller insisted on the pretermination just the same and asked that two checks be issued for the proceeds, one for P1,800,000.00 and the second for the balance, and that the checks be delivered to her office at Philamlife. Eustaquio, thus, proceeded to prepare the "purchase order slip" for the requested pretermination as required by office procedure, and from his desk, the papers, following the processing route, passed through the position analyst, securities clerk, verifier clerk and documentation clerk, before the two cashier's checks, nos. 021759 and 021760 for P1,800,000.00 and P613,215.16, respectively, both payable to Eligia G. Fernando, covering the preterminated placement, were prepared. The two cashier's checks, together with the papers consisting of the money

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October 15, 1981 for P48,500.00, payable to "cash" which was received through clearing from PNB Pasay Branch; on October 19, 1981, by means of Check No. 240006 dated the same day for P1,000,000.00, payable to "cash," which the woman identifying herself as Eligia G. Fernando encashed over the counter; on October 22, 1981, by means of Check No. 240007 dated the same day for P370,000.00, payable to "cash" which the woman herself also encashed over the counter; and on November 4, 1981, by means of Check No. 240001 dated November 3, 1981 for P4,100.00, payable to "cash," which was received through clearing from Far East Bank. The last withdrawal on November 4, 1981 left Current Account No. 26310-3 with a balance of only P571.61. - On November 11, 1981, the maturity date of Eligia G. Fernado's money market placement with BPI, the real Eligia G. Fernando went to BPI for the roll-over of her placement. She disclaimed having preterminated her placement on October 12, 1981. She executed an affidavit stating that while she was the payee of the two checks in controversy, she never received nor endorsed them and that her purported signature on the back of the checks was not hers but forged. With her surrender of the original of the promissory note (No. 35623 with maturity value of P2,462,243.19) evidencing the placement which matured that day, BPI issued her a new promissory note (No. 40314 with maturity date of December 23, 1981 and maturity value of P2,500.266.77) to evidence a roll-over of the placement. - On November 12, 1981, supported by Eligia G. Fernando's affidavit, BPI returned the two checks in controversy to CBC for the reason "Payee's endorsement forged". CBC, in turn, returned the checks for reason "Beyond Clearing Time". These incidents led to the filing of this case with the Arbitration Committee. - The Arbitration Committee ruled in favor of BPI and ordered CBC to pay the former the amount of P1,206,607.58 with interest thereon at 12% per annum from August 12, 1983. - However, upon CBCs motion for reconsideration, the Board of Directors of the PCHC reversed the Arbitration Committee's decision and dismissed the complaint of BPI while ordering it to pay CBC the sum of P1,206,607.58. - BPI then filed a petition for review with the Regional Trial Court of Makati who dismissed said petition but modified the award by including a provision for attorneys fees in favor of CBC, among others. - The court of appeals affirmed the trial courts decision. ISSUES 1. WON the collecting bank has absolute liability on a warranty of the validity of all prior endorsements stamped at the back of the checks 2. In the event that the payee's signature is forged, WON the drawer/drawee bank (in this case BPI) may claim reimbursement from the collecting bank which earlier paid the proceeds of the checks after the same checks were cleared HELD 1. NO - BPI contends that respondent CBC's clear warranty that "all prior endorsements and/or lack of endorsements guaranteed" stamped at the back of the checks was an unrestrictive clearing guaranty that all prior endorsements in the checks are genuine. Under this premise petitioner BPI asserts that the presenting or collecting bank, respondent CBC, had an unquestioned liability when it turned out that the payee's signature on the checks were forged. With these circumstances, petitioner BPI maintains that considerations of relative negligence become totally irrelevant.

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of the infirmity or defect, or knowledge of such facts (Sec. 56, Negotiable Instruments Law) that their action in accepting their checks for deposit and allowing the withdrawals against the same amounted to bad faith cannot be considered as basis for holding CBC liable. - Banks handle daily transactions involving millions of pesos. By the very nature of their work the degree of responsibility, care and trustworthiness expected of their employees and officials is far greater than those of ordinary clerks and employees. For obvious reasons, the banks are expected to exercise the highest degree of diligence in the selection and supervision of their employees. - In the present case, there is no question that the banks were negligent in the selection and supervision of their employees. The Arbitration Committee, the PCHC Board of Directors and the lower court, however disagree in the evaluation of the degree of negligence of the banks. While the Arbitration Committee declared the negligence of respondent CBC graver, the PCHC Board of Directors and the lower courts declared that petitioner BPI's negligence was graver. To the extent that the degree of negligence is equated to the proximate cause of the loss, we rule that the issue as to whose negligence is graver is relevant. No matter how many justifications both banks present to avoid responsibility, they cannot erase the fact that they were both guilty in not exercising extraordinary diligence in the selection and supervision of their employees. 2. NO - The next issue hinges on whose negligence was the proximate cause of the payment of the forged checks by an impostor. Petitioner BPI insists that the doctrine of last clear chance should have been applied considering the circumstances of this case. Under this doctrine, where both parties were negligent and such negligence were not contemporaneous, the person who has the last fair chance to avoid the impending harm and fails to do so is chargeable with the consequences, without reference to the prior negligence of the other party. - Applying these principles, petitioner BPI's reliance on the doctrine of last clear chance to clear it from liability is not well-taken. CBC had no prior notice of the fraud perpetrated by BPI's employees on the pretermination of Eligia G. Fernando's money market placement. Moreover, Fernando is not a depositor of CBC. Hence, a comparison of the signature of Eligia G. Fernando with that of the impostor Eligia G. Fernando, which respondent CBC did, could not have resulted in the discovery of the fraud. Hence, respondent CBC had no way to discover the fraud at all. In fact the records fail to show that respondent CBC had knowledge, actual or implied, of the fraud perpetrated by the impostor and the employees of BPI. - BPI further argues that the acts and omissions of respondent CBC are the cause "that set into motion the actual and continuous sequence of events that produced the injury and without which the result would not have occurred." Petitioner BPI anchors its argument on its stance that there was "a gap, a hiatus, an interval between the issuance and delivery of said checks by petitioner BPI to the impostor and their actual payment of CBC to the impostor. Petitioner BPI points out that the gap of one (1) day that elapsed from its issuance and delivery of the checks to the impostor is material on the issue of proximate cause. At this stage, according to petitioner BPI, there was yet no loss and the impostor could have decided to desist from completing the same plan and could have held to the checks without negotiating them. - Petitioner BPI's contention that CBC alone should bear the loss must fail. The gap of one (1) day between the issuance and delivery of the checks bearing the impostor's name as payee and the impostor's negotiating the said forged checks by opening an account and depositing the same with

- In presenting the checks for clearing and for payment, the collecting bank made an express guarantee on the validity of "all prior endorsements." Thus, stamped at the back of the checks are the clear warranty: ALL PRIOR ENDORSEMENTS AND/OR LACK OF ENDORSEMENTS GUARANTEED. Without such warranty, the drawee bank would not have paid on the checks. No amount of legal jargon can reverse the clear meaning of the warranty. As the warranty has proven to be false and inaccurate, the defendant is liable for any damage arising out of the falsity of its representation. - Apropos the matter of forgery in endorsements, this Court has emphasized that the collecting bank or last endorser generally suffers the loss because it has the duty to ascertain the genuineness of all prior endorsements considering that the act of presenting the check for payment to the drawee is an assertion that the party making the presentment has done its duty to ascertain the genuineness of the endorsements. If the drawee-bank discovers that the signature of the payee was forged after it has paid the amount of the check to the holder thereof, it can recover the amount paid from the collecting bank. However, the point that comes uppermost is whether the drawee bank was negligent in failing to discover the alteration or the forgery. - The general rule under Section 23 of the Negotiable Instruments Law is to the effect that a forged signature is "wholly inoperative", and payment made "through or under such signature" is ineffectual or does not discharge the instrument. The exception to this rule is when the party relying in the forgery is "precluded from setting up the forgery or want of authority. In this jurisdiction we recognize negligence of the party invoking forgery as an exception to the general rule. - In the present petition the payee's names in the checks were forged. Following the general rule, the checks are "wholly inoperative" and of no effect. However, the underlying circumstances of the case show that the general rule on forgery is not applicable. The issue as to who between the parties should bear the loss in the payment of the forged checks necessities the determination of the rights and liabilities of the parties involved in the controversy in relation to the forged checks. - The records show that petitioner BPI as drawee bank and respondent CBC as representing or collecting bank were both negligent resulting in the encashment of the forged checks. - The Arbitration Committee in its decision analyzed the negligence of the employees of petitioner BPI involved in the processing of the pre-termination of Eligia G. Fernando's money market placement and in the issuance and delivery of the subject checks in this wise: a) The impostor could have been readily unmasked by a mere telephone call, which nobody in BPI bothered to make to Eligia G. Fernando, a vice-president of Philamlife; b) The officer who used to handle Eligia G. Fernando's account did not do anything about the account's pre-termination; c) Again no verification appears to have been made on Eligia G. Fernando's purported signature on the letter requesting the pre-termination and the letter authorizing her niece to pick-up the checks, yet, her signature was in BPI's file; and d) Another step that could have foiled the fraud, but which BPI neglected to take, was requiring before the two checks in controversy were delivered, the surrender of the promissory note evidencing the money market placement that was supposedly pre-terminated. The Arbitration Committee, however, belittled petitioner BPI's negligence compared to that of respondent CBC which it declared as graver and the proximate cause of the loss of the subject checks to the impostor who impersonated Eligia G. Fernando. - The PCHC Board of Directors, however, stated that these withdrawals, without any further showing that the CBC employees had actual knowledge

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respondent CBC is not controlling. It is not unnatural or unexpected that after taking the risk of impersonating Eligia G. Fernando with the connivance of BPI's employees, the impostor would complete her deception by encashing the forged checks. There is therefore, greater reason to rule that the proximate cause of the payment of the forged checks by an impostor was due to the negligence of petitioner BPI. This finding, notwithstanding, we are not inclined to rule that petitioner BPI must solely bear the loss of P2,413,215.16, the total amount of the two (2) forged checks. Due care on the part of CBC could have prevented any loss. - The Court cannot ignore the fact that the CBC employees closed their eyes to the suspicious circumstances of huge over-the-counter withdrawals made immediately after the account was opened. The opening of the account itself was accompanied by inexplicable acts clearly showing negligence. And while we do not apply the last clear chance doctrine as controlling in this case, still the CBC employees had ample opportunity to avoid the harm which befell both CBC and BPI. They let the opportunity slip by when the ordinary prudence expected of bank employees would have sufficed to seize it. - Both banks were negligent in the selection and supervision of their employees resulting in the encashment of the forged checks by an impostor. Both banks were not able to overcome the presumption of negligence in the selection and supervision of their employees. It was the gross negligence of the employees of both banks which resulted in the fraud and the subsequent loss. While it is true that petitioner BPI's negligence may have been the proximate cause of the loss, respondent CBC's negligence contributed equally to the success of the impostor in encashing the proceeds of the forged checks. Under these circumstances, we apply Article 2179 of the Civil Code to the effect that while respondent CBC may recover its losses, such losses are subject to mitigation by the courts. Disposition The questioned Decision and Resolution are MODIFIED. BPI shall be responsible for 60% while CBC shall share 40% of the loss of P2,413,215.16

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ISSUE WON an insane person, exempt from criminal liability can still be civilly liable HELD YES Ratio Civil liability accompanies criminal liability, because every person liable criminally for a crime or misdemeanor is also liable for reparation of damage and for indemnification of the harm done, but there may be civil liability because of acts ordinarily punishable, although the law has declared their perpetrators exempt from criminal liability. Reasoning - Such is the case of a lunatic or insane person who, in spite of his irresponsibility on account of the deplorable condition of his deranged mind, is still reasonably and justly liable with his property for the consequences of his acts, even though they be performed unwittingly, for the reason that his fellows ought not to suffer for the disastrous results of his harmful acts more than is necessary, in spite of his unfortunate condition. Law and society are under obligation to protect him during his illness and so when he is declared to be liable with his property for reparation and indemnification, he is still entitled to the benefit of what is necessary for his decent maintenance, but this protection does not exclude liability for damage caused to those who may have the misfortune to suffer the consequences of his acts. - Article 17 of the Penal Code states: Every person criminally liable for a crime or misdemeanor is also civilly liable. - Article 18 of the same code says: The exemption from criminal liability declared in Nos. 1, 2, 3, 7, and 10 of article 8 does not include exemption from civil liability, which shall be enforced, subject to the following: (1) In cases 1, 2, and 3, the persons who are civilly liable for acts committed by a lunatic or imbecile, or a person under 9 years of age, or over this age and under 15, who has not acted with the exercise of judgment, are those who have them under their authority, legal guardianship or power, unless they prove that there was no blame or negligence on their part. Should there be no person having them under his authority, legal guardian, or power, if such person be insolvent, the said lunatics, imbeciles, or minors shall answer with their own property, excepting that part which is exempted for their support in accordance with the civil law. DISPOSITION Therefore, the judgment appealed from being in accordance with law, affirmation thereof is proper, and it is hereby affirmed, with costs against the appellant.

- Trial court held that both parties were negligent, but that plaintiffs negligence was not as great as defendants, awarded plaintiff P1,000. ISSUE WON the negligence of plaintiff contributed to the principal occurrence or only to his own injury. (If the former, he cannot recover; if the latter, the trial court was correct in apportioning damages) HELD NO Ratio Intoxication in itself is not negligence. It is but a circumstance to be considered with the other evidence tending to prove negligence. Reasoning - Intoxication in itself is not negligence, and no facts, other than the fact that Wright was intoxicated, are stated which warrant the conclusion that the plaintiff was negligent. The conclusion that if he had been sober he would not have been injured is not warranted by the facts as found. It is impossible to say that a sober man would not have fallen from the vehicle under the conditions described. - A horse crossing the railroad tracks with not only the rails but a portion of the ties themselves aboveground, stumbling by reason of the unsure footing and falling, the vehicle crashing against the rails with such force as to break a wheel, might be sufficient to throw a person from the vehicle no matter what his condition; and to conclude that, under such circumstances, a sober man would not have fallen while a drunken man did, is to draw a conclusion which enters the realm of speculation and guesswork. DISPOSITION Plaintiff not negligent. No facts to merit a higher award of damages to plaintiff.

E.M. WRIGHT V MANILA ELECTRIC R.R. & LIGHT CO. 28 Phil 122 MORELAND; October 1, 1914
NATURE An action to recover damages for injuries sustained in an accident FACTS - Defendant Manila Electric is a corporation engaged in operating an electric street railway - Plaintiffs residence in Caloocan fronts on the street along which defendants tracks run. To enter his premises from the street, plaintiff must cross defendants tracks. - One night, plaintiff drove home in a calesa and, in crossing the tracks to enter his premises, the horse stumbled, leaped forward, and fell, throwing the plaintiff from the vehicle and causing injuries - At the point where plaintiff crossed the tracks, the rails were above-gruond, and the ties upon which the rails rested projected from one-third to one-half of their depth out of the ground, making the tops of the rails some 5 or 6 inches or more above the level of the street. - It is admitted that the defendant was negligent in maintaining its tracks, but defendant claims the plaintiff was also negligent in that he was so intoxicated, and such intoxication was the primary cause of the accident

US V BAGGAY 20 PHIL 142 TORRES; September 1, 1911


NATURE Appeal by the defendant from the judgment rendered on April 28, 1910, whereby he was declared exempt from criminal liability but was obliged to indemnify the heirs if the murdered woman, Bil-liingan, in the sum of P1,000, to pay the costs in the case and to be confined in an institution for the insane until further order of the court. FACTS - About the 4th of October, 1909, several persons were assembled in the defendant's house in the township of Penarrubia, Abra, Province of Ilocos Sur, for the purpose of holding a song service called "buni" according to the Tinguian custom, when he, the non-Christian Baggay, without provocation suddenly attacked the woman Bil-liingan with a bolo, inflicting a serious wound on her head from which she expired immediately; and with the same bolo he like wise inflicted various wounds on the women named Calabayan, Agueng, Quisamay, Calapini, and on his own mother, named Dioalan. - For this reason the provincial fiscal filed a complaint in the court of Ilocos Sur, dated February 15, charging the non-Christian Baggay, jr., with murder, because of the violent death of the woman Bil-liingan. This cause was instituted separately from the other, No. 1109, for lesiones. After trial and proof that the defendant was suffering from mental aberration, the judge on April 28 rendered the judgment cited above, whereupon the defendant's

AMEDO V RIO [citation] CONCEPCION; May 24, 1954


FACTS - This case was instituted on October 18, 1950. In her original complaint, plaintiff Elena Amedo sought to collect from defendant Rio y Olabarrieta, Inc., the sum of P2,038.40 as compensation for the death of her son, Filomeno Managuit, who worked for the defendant as a seaman of the M/S Pilar II. The main allegation of said original complaint was:

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That on May 27, 1949 at about 11:30 o'clock in the morning, while the deceased Filomeno Managuit was on board M/S "Pilar II" as such seaman, he jumped into the water to retrieve a 2-peso bill belonging to him, and as a consequence of which, he was drowned. - this however was dismissed due to lack of a cause of action which defendant filed stating that the allegation does not show that the death of plaintiff's son was due to an "accident arising out of and in the course of employment,". - she was allowed to file an amended complaint which was remanded to the trial court. - her amended complaint stated: That on May 27, 1949, at or about 11:30 o'clock in the morning while the said Filomeno Managuit was in the course of his employment, performing his duties as such ordinary seaman on defendant's M/S "Pilar II", which was anchored then about 1 1/2 miles from the seashore of Arceli Dumarang, Palawan, his two-peso bill was blown by the breeze into the sea and in his effort to retrieve the same from the waters he was drowned. ISSUE WON Amedo could claim compensation from employer Rio HELD NO - Plaintiffs basis for appeal is the Workmens Compensation Act. Sections 2 and 4 of which: Sec. 2. Grounds for compensation. When any employee receives a personal injury from any accident arising out of and in the course of the employment, or contracts any illness directly caused by such employment, or the result of the nature of such employment, his employer shall pay compensation in the sums and to the persons hereinafter specified. Sec. 4. Injuries not covered. Compensation shall not be allowed for injuries caused (1) by the voluntary intent of the employee to inflict such injury upon himself or another person; (2) by drunkenness on the part of the laborer who had the accident; (3) by notorious negligence of the same. - from these provisions three conditions are essential to hold an employer liable. These are: (1) the accident must arise out of the employment; (2) it must happen in the course of the employment; and (3) it must not be caused by the "notorious negligence" of the employee. Point in question is whether the accident was committed under these 3 conditions - "The words "arising out of" refer to the origin or cause of the accident and are descriptive of its character, while the words `in the course of' refer to the time, place, and circumstances under which the accident takes place - it may be conceded that the death of Filomeno took place "in the course of" his employment, in that it happened at the "time" when, and at the "place" where-according to the amended complaint-he was working. However, the accident which produced this tragic result did not "arise out of" his employment. The blowing of his 2-peso bill may have grown out of, or arisen from, his employment. It was the result of a risk peculiar to his work as a seaman or incidental to such work. But, his death was the consequence of his decision to jump into the water to retrieve said bill. The hazardous nature of this act was not due specially to the nature of his employment. It was a risk to which any person on board the M/S Pilar II, such as a passenger thereof or an ordinary visitor, would have been exposed had he, likewise, jumped into the sea, as Filomeno had. - was the accident caused by Filomenos notorious negligence? - "notorious negligence" has been held to be tantamount to "gross negligence", which, in turn, has been defined as follows:

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- The criminal case, however, was not a suit for damages against third persons because the heirs did not intervene therein and they have not received the indemnity ordered by the court. - At any rate, even if the case was against a third person, the court already decided in Nava vs. Inchausti that criminal prosection of the "other person" does not affect the liability of the employer. - Petitioner also contends that the amicable settlement entered into by Mamador's widow and Macunat barred the widow's claim against the employer because she has already elected one of the remedies. - This contention cannot be sustained because what the widow waived was the offender's criminal proscution and not all civil action for damages. 2. NO - Mere riding on a haulage truck or stealing a ride thereon is not negligence, ordinarily. It couldn't be, because transportation by truck is not dangerous per se. - Although the employer prohibited its employees to ride the haulage trucks, its violation does not constitute negligence per se, but it may be an evidence of negligence. - Under the circumstance, however, it cannot be declared negligence because the proibition had nothing to do with the personal safety of the riders. - Notorious negligence means the same as gross negligence which implies "conscious indifferenece to consequences", "pursuing a course of conduct which would naturally and probably result in injury". Disposition Award for compensation by WCC affirmed

- By gross negligence is meant "such entire want of care as to raise a presumption that the person in fault is conscious of the probable consequences of carelessness, and is indifferent, or worse, to the danger of injury to person or property of others." (Wall vs. Cameron [1882] 6 Colo., 275; see, also, The Law Governing Labor Disputes in the Philippines by Francisco, 2nd ed., p. 877.) - It cannot be denied that in jumping into the sea, one mile and a half from the seashore of Arceli, Dumarang, Palawan, Filomeno failed to exercise "even slight care and diligence," that he displayed a "reckless disregard of the safety" of his person, that he could not have been but conscious of the probable consequences" of his carelessness and that he was "indifferent, or worse, to the danger of injury. - case provides for other jurisprudence which describe instances of gross negligence attributable to employee (see case). - this is distinguishable from cases wherein the act done is not dangerous per se such as when an employee drops a cigarette on the pavement and picks it up. So, also, if, while Filomeno Managuit was working, his 2-peso bill merely fell from his pocket, and as he picked up the bill from the floor something accidentally fell upon him and injured him, he would surely be entitled to compensation, his act being obviously innocent. - since the act done by Filomeno was dangerous, his accident could be attributed to his gross negligence.

MARINDUQUE IRON MINES AGENTS V WORKMENS COMPENSATION COMMISSION 99 PHIL 48 BENGZON; June 30, 1956
NATURE Petition for review on certiorari of a decision of the WCC FACTS - A truck driven by Procopio Macunat, belonging to Marinduque, turned over and hit a coconut tree resulting in the death of Pedro Mamador and injury to the other laborers. - Macunat was prosecuted, convicted and was sentenced to indemnify the heirs of the deceased. He has paid nothing, however, to the latter. - Deceaseds wife now seeks compensation by Marinduque as the employer. ISSUE 1. WON Mamador has a right to compensation by Marinduque 2. WON there was notorious negligence by the deceased for having violated the employers prohibition to ride haulage trucks

LAYUGAN V IAC 167 SCRA 363 SARMIENTO; November 14, 1968


NATURE Petition for review on certiorari of IAC decision FACTS - Plaintiff Pedro Layugan testified that while in Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya, he and a companion were repairing the tire of their cargo truck which was parked along the right side of the National Highway. Defendant's truck driven recklessly by Daniel Serrano bumped the plaintiff, that as a result, plaintiff was injured and hospitalized. Due to said injuries, his left leg was amputated so he had to use crutches to walk. - Defendant Godofredo Isidro admitted his ownership of the vehicle involved in the accident driven by Daniel Serrano. Defendant said that the plaintiff was merely a bystander, not a truck helper being a brother-in-law law of the driver of said truck; that the truck allegedly being repaired was parked, occupying almost half of the right lane towards Solano, Nueva Vizcaya, right after the curve; that the proximate cause of the incident was the failure of the driver of the parked truck in installing the early warning device, - Daniel Serrano, defendant driver, said that he knew the responsibilities of a driver; that before leaving, he checked the truck. The truck owner used to instruct him to be careful in driving. He bumped the truck being repaired by Pedro Layugan, plaintiff, while the same was at a stop position. From the evidence presented, it has been established clearly that the injuries sustained by the plaintiff was caused by defendant's driver, Daniel Serrano. Serrano also testified that, When I was a few meters away, I saw the truck which was loaded with round logs. I stepped on my foot brakes but it did not function

HELD 1. YES - Petitioner alleges that the criminal case sentencing Macunat to indemnify the heirs of the deceased was a suit for damages against a third person, thereby having the effect of releasing the employer from liability.

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with my many attempts. I have (sic) found out later that the fluid pipe on the rear right was cut that's why the breaks did not function. - Plaintiff points to the negligence of the defendant driver while Isidro points to the driver of parked truck as negligent, and says that absent such proof of care, it would, under the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur, evoke the presumption of negligence on the part of the driver of the parked cargo truck as well as his helper, the petitioner herein, who was fixing the flat tire of the said truck. ISSUES 1. WON defendant driver Serrano was negligent 2. WON the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur applies in this case HELD 1 NO - (Procedural) Ratio Findings of fact are entitled to great respect and will not ordinarily be disturbed by this Court unless it falls down under the exceptions provided by the Court to merit review of the facts. Reasoning - This is a question of fact. But this case is an exception since: 1) the finding are grounded entirely on speculation, surmise, or conjecture; 2) the inference made is manifestly mistaken, 3) the judgment is based on misapprehension of facts; 4) CA findings are contrary to those of the trial court; 5) the said findings of fact are conclusions without citation of specific evidence on which they are based; and 6) when the findings of fact of the Court of Appeals are premised on the absence of evidence and are contradicted on record. Hence, SC entertained review of the factual question. - (Substantive) Ratio The test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular case may be stated as follows: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. Reasoning [1] Negligence defined. Negligence is the omission to do something which a reasonable man, guided by those considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs, would do, or the doing of something which a prudent and reasonable man would not do [2] Applying the definition and the test, it is clear that the absence or want of care of Daniel Serrano has been established by clear and convincing evidence. Whether cargo truck was parked along the road or on half the shoulder of the road is immaterial taking into account the warning device consisting of the lighted kerosene lamp placed 3-4m from the back of the truck. But despite this warning, the Isuzu truck driven by Serrano, still bumped the rear of the parked cargo truck. As a direct consequence of such accident Layugan sustained injuries on his left forearm and left foot. 2. NO Note that for our purposes this was not raised as an issue in this case. Therefore this only Obiter Dicta. But as far as were concerned and relevant to our discussion in the outline, I formulated it in an issue-type. This is what the Court actually said in the case to prove its just obiter, and its relevant to the main issue on negligence: At this juncture, it may be enlightening and helpful in the proper resolution of the issue of negligence to examine the doctrine of Res ipsa loquitur. Obiter [1] What is the doctrine of Res Ipsa Loquitur? Two ways to put it: (a) This doctrine is stated thus: "Where the thing which causes injury is shown to be under the management of the defendant, and the accident is

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the defendants in this case, on June 10, 1985. They agreed that their date at the operating table at the De Los Santos Medical Center, would be on June 17, 1985 at 9:00 A.M.. Dr. Hosaka decided that she should undergo a cholecystectomy operation after examining the documents presented to him. Rogelio E. Ramos, however, asked Dr. Hosaka to look for a good anesthesiologist. Dr. Hosaka, in turn, assured Rogelio that he will get a good anesthesiologist. She was admitted in the hospital and was with her sister-inlaw, Herminda Cruz, who was the Dean of the College of Nursing at the Capitol Medical Center, was also there for moral support. After praying, she was given injections. At the operating room, Herminda saw about two or three nurses and Dr. Perfecta Gutierrez, the other defendant, who was to administer anesthesia. Although not a member of the hospital staff, Herminda introduced herself as Dean of the College of Nursing at the Capitol Medical Center who was to provide moral support to the patient, to them. Herminda was allowed to stay inside the operating room. - Hours later at about 12:15 P.M., Herminda Cruz, who was inside the operating room with the patient, heard somebody say that Dr. Hosaka is already here. She then saw people inside the operating room moving, doing this and that, [and] preparing the patient for the operation. As she held the hand of Erlinda Ramos, she then saw Dr. Gutierrez intubating the hapless patient. She thereafter heard Dr. Gutierrez say, ang hirap ma-intubate nito, mali yata ang pagkakapasok. O lumalaki ang tiyan (id., p. 17). Because of the remarks of Dra. Gutierrez, she focused her attention on what Dr. Gutierrez was doing. She thereafter noticed bluish discoloration of the nailbeds of the left hand of the hapless Erlinda even as Dr. Hosaka approached her. She then heard Dr. Hosaka issue an order for someone to call Dr. Calderon, another anesthesiologist. After Dr. Calderon arrived at the operating room, she saw this anesthesiologist trying to intubate the patient. The patients nailbed became bluish and the patient was placed in a trendelenburg position. Immediately thereafter, she went out of the operating room, and she told Rogelio E. Ramos that something wrong was x x x happening. Dr. Calderon was then able to intubate the patient. - Herminda Cruz immediately rushed back, and saw that the patient was still in trendelenburg position. At almost 3:00 P.M. of that fateful day, she saw the patient taken to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). - Doctors Gutierrez and Hosaka were also asked by the hospital to explain what happened to the patient. The doctors explained that the patient had bronchospasm. Erlinda Ramos stayed for about four months in the hospital, she incurred hospital bills amounting to P93,542.25. She has been in a comatose condition. After being discharged from the hospital, she has been staying in their residence, still needing constant medical attention, with her husband Rogelio incurring a monthly expense ranging from P8,000.00 to P10,000.00. She was also diagnosed to be suffering from diffuse cerebral parenchymal damage. - Petitioners filed a civil case for damages with the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City against herein private respondents alleging negligence in the management and care of Erlinda Ramos. - During the trial, both parties presented evidence as to the possible cause of Erlindas injury. Plaintiff presented the testimonies of Dean Herminda Cruz and Dr. Mariano Gavino to prove that the damage sustained by Erlinda was due to lack of oxygen in her brain caused by the faulty management of her airway by private respondents during the anesthesia phase. On the other hand, private respondents primarily relied on the expert testimony of Dr. Eduardo Jamora, a pulmonologist, to the effect that the cause of brain damage was Erlindas allergic reaction to the anesthetic agent, Thiopental Sodium (Pentothal).

such as in the ordinary course of things does not happen if those who have the management use proper care, it affords reasonable evidence, in the absence of an explanation by the defendant, that the accident arose from want of care, and (b) According to Blacks Law dictionary, Res ipsa loquitur. The thing speaks for itself Rebuttable presumption or inference that defendant was negligent, which arises upon proof that instrumentality causing injury was in defendant's exclusive control, and that the accident was one which ordinarily does not happen in absence of negligence. Res ipsa loquitur is rule of evidence whereby negligence of alleged wrongdoer may be inferred from mere fact that accident happened provided character of accident and circumstances attending it lead reasonably to belief that in absence of negligence it would not have occurred and that thing which caused injury is shown to have been under management and control of alleged wrongdoer. [2] In our jurisdiction, and the way we apply it in cases, particularly in the law of negligence: Res ipsa loquitur as a rule of evidence is peculiar to the law of negligence which recognizes that prima facie negligence may be established without direct proof and furnishes a substitute for specific proof of negligence. The doctrine is not a rule of substantive law but merely a mode of proof or a mere procedural convenience. The doctrine merely determines and regulates what shall be prima facie evidence thereof and facilitates the burden of plaintiff of proving a breach of the duty of due care. The doctrine can be invoked when and only when, under the circumstances involved, direct evidence is absent and not readily available. So, it is inapplicable where plaintiff has knowledge and testifies or presents evidence as to the specific act of negligence which is the cause of the injury, or where theres direct evidence as to the precise cause of the accident and all the facts and circumstances attendant on the occurrence clearly appear. And once the actual cause of injury is established beyond controversy, no presumptions will be involved and the doctrine becomes inapplicable when the circumstances show that no inference of defendant's liability can reasonably be made, whatever the source of the evidence. In this case it is inapplicable because it was established by clear and convincing evidence the negligence of the defendant driver. Disposition Petition GRANTED with costs against private respondents.

RAMOS V CA [citation] KAPUNAN; December 29, 1999


NATURE Petition For Certiorari FACTS - In the case at bar, the Court is called upon to rule whether a surgeon, an anesthesiologist and a hospital should be made liable for the unfortunate comatose condition of a patient scheduled for cholecystectomy. - Plaintiff Erlinda Ramos was a robust woman except for occasional complaints of discomfort due to pains allegedly caused by the presence of a stone in her gall bladder she was as normal as any other woman. Because the discomforts somehow interfered with her normal ways, she sought professional advice. She was advised to undergo an operation for the removal of a stone in her gall bladdershe underwent a series of examinations which included blood and urine tests which indicated she was fit for surgery. She and her husband Rogelio met for the first time Dr. Orlino Hozaka, one of

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- Regional Trial Court rendered judgment in favor of petitioners. Court of Appeals reversed. - The decision of the Court of Appeals was received on 9 June 1995 by petitioner Rogelio Ramos who was mistakenly addressed as Atty. Rogelio Ramos. No copy of the decision, however, was sent nor received by the Coronel Law Office, then counsel on record of petitioners. Rogelio referred the decision of the appellate court to a new lawyer, Atty. Ligsay, only on 20 June 1995, or four (4) days before the expiration of the reglementary period for filing a motion for reconsideration. On the same day, Atty. Ligsay, filed with the appellate court a motion for extension of time to file a motion for reconsideration. The motion for reconsideration was submitted on 4 July 1995. However, the appellate court denied the motion for extension of time in its Resolution dated 25 July 1995. Meanwhile petitioners engaged the services of another counsel, Atty. Sillano, to replace Atty. Ligsay. Atty. Sillano filed on 7 August 1995 a motion to admit the motion for reconsideration contending that the period to file the appropriate pleading on the assailed decision had not yet commenced to run as the Division Clerk of Court of the Court of Appeals had not yet served a copy thereof to the counsel on record. Despite this explanation, the appellate court still denied the motion to admit the motion for reconsideration of petitioners in its Resolution, dated 29 March 1996, primarily on the ground that the fifteen-day (15) period for filing a motion for reconsideration had already expired. - A copy of the above resolution was received by Atty. Sillano on 11 April 1996. The next day, or on 12 April 1996, Atty. Sillano filed before this Court a motion for extension of time to file the present petition for certiorari under Rule 45. The Court granted the motion for extension of time and gave petitioners additional thirty (30) days after the expiration of the fifteen-day (15) period counted from the receipt of the resolution of the Court of Appeals within which to submit the petition. The due date fell on 27 May 1996. The petition was filed on 9 May 1996, well within the extended period given by the Court. ISSUES 1. WON it should be dismissed for being filed later than allowable 15 day period for the filing of the Motion for Reconsideration 2. WON the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur is applicable 3. WON the Court of Appeals erred in finding that private respondents were not negligent in the care of Erlinda during the anesthesia phase of the operation and, if in the affirmative, whether the alleged negligence was the proximate cause of Erlindas comatose condition. Corollary thereto, we shall also determine if the Court of Appeals erred in relying on the testimonies of the witnesses for the private respondents 4. What is the cost for the damages HELD 1. NO - A careful review of the records reveals that the reason behind the delay in filing the motion for reconsideration is attributable to the fact that the decision of the Court of Appeals was not sent to then counsel on record of petitioners, the Coronel Law Office. In fact, a copy of the decision of the appellate court was instead sent to and received by petitioner Rogelio Ramos on 9 June 1995 wherein he was mistakenly addressed as Atty. Rogelio Ramos. Based on the other communications received by petitioner Rogelio Ramos, the appellate court apparently mistook him for the counsel on record. Thus, no copy of the decision of the appellate court was furnished to the counsel on record. Petitioner, not being a lawyer and unaware of the prescriptive period

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- However, much has been said that res ipsa loquitur is not a rule of substantive law and, as such, does not create or constitute an independent or separate ground of liability. Instead, it is considered as merely evidentiary or in the nature of a procedural rule. It is regarded as a mode of proof, or a mere procedural convenience since it furnishes a substitute for, and relieves a plaintiff of, the burden of producing specific proof of negligence. In other words, mere invocation and application of the doctrine does not dispense with the requirement of proof of negligence. It is simply a step in the process of such proof, permitting the plaintiff to present along with the proof of the accident, enough of the attending circumstances to invoke the doctrine, creating an inference or presumption of negligence, and to thereby place on the defendant the burden of going forward with the proof. Still, before resort to the doctrine may be allowed, the following requisites must be satisfactorily shown: 1. The accident is of a kind which ordinarily does not occur in the absence of someones negligence; 2. It is caused by an instrumentality within the exclusive control of the defendant or defendants; and 3. The possibility of contributing conduct which would make the plaintiff responsible is eliminated. - In the above requisites, the fundamental element is the control of the instrumentality which caused the damage. Such element of control must be shown to be within the dominion of the defendant. In order to have the benefit of the rule, a plaintiff, in addition to proving injury or damage, must show a situation where it is applicable, and must establish that the essential elements of the doctrine were present in a particular incident. - In cases where the res ipsa loquitur is applicable, the court is permitted to find a physician negligent upon proper proof of injury to the patient, without the aid of expert testimony, where the court from its fund of common knowledge can determine the proper standard of care. Where common knowledge and experience teach that a resulting injury would not have occurred to the patient if due care had been exercised, an inference of negligence may be drawn giving rise to an application of the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur without medical evidence, which is ordinarily required to show not only what occurred but how and why it occurred. When the doctrine is appropriate, all that the patient must do is prove a nexus between the particular act or omission complained of and the injury sustained while under the custody and management of the defendant without need to produce expert medical testimony to establish the standard of care. Resort to res ipsa loquitur is allowed because there is no other way, under usual and ordinary conditions, by which the patient can obtain redress for injury suffered by him. - It does not automatically apply to all cases of medical negligence as to mechanically shift the burden of proof to the defendant to show that he is not guilty of the ascribed negligence. Res ipsa loquitur is not a rigid or ordinary doctrine to be perfunctorily used but a rule to be cautiously applied, depending upon the circumstances of each case. It is generally restricted to situations in malpractice cases where a layman is able to say, as a matter of common knowledge and observation, that the consequences of professional care were not as such as would ordinarily have followed if due care had been exercised. A distinction must be made between the failure to secure results, and the occurrence of something more unusual and not ordinarily found if the service or treatment rendered followed the usual procedure of those skilled in that particular practice. It must be conceded that the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur can have no application in a suit against a physician or surgeon which involves the merits of a diagnosis or of a scientific treatment. The physician or surgeon is not required at his peril to explain why any particular

for filing a motion for reconsideration, referred the same to a legal counsel only on 20 June 1995. - It is elementary that when a party is represented by counsel, all notices should be sent to the partys lawyer at his given address. With a few exceptions, notice to a litigant without notice to his counsel on record is no notice at all. In the present case, since a copy of the decision of the appellate court was not sent to the counsel on record of petitioner, there can be no sufficient notice to speak of. Hence, the delay in the filing of the motion for reconsideration cannot be taken against petitioner. Moreover, since the Court of Appeals already issued a second Resolution, dated 29 March 1996, which superseded the earlier resolution issued on 25 July 1995, and denied the motion for reconsideration of petitioner, we believe that the receipt of the former should be considered in determining the timeliness of the filing of the present petition. Based on this, the petition before us was submitted on time. 2. YES - We find the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur appropriate in the case at bar. As will hereinafter be explained, the damage sustained by Erlinda in her brain prior to a scheduled gall bladder operation presents a case for the application of res ipsa loquitur. - Considering that a sound and unaffected member of the body (the brain) is injured or destroyed while the patient is unconscious and under the immediate and exclusive control of the physicians, we hold that a practical administration of justice dictates the application of res ipsa loquitur. Upon these facts and under these circumstances the Court would be able to say, as a matter of common knowledge and observation, if negligence attended the management and care of the patient. Moreover, the liability of the physicians and the hospital in this case is not predicated upon an alleged failure to secure the desired results of an operation nor on an alleged lack of skill in the diagnosis or treatment as in fact no operation or treatment was ever performed on Erlinda. Thus, upon all these initial determination a case is made out for the application of the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur. - Nonetheless, in holding that res ipsa loquitur is available to the present case we are not saying that the doctrine is applicable in any and all cases where injury occurs to a patient while under anesthesia, or to any and all anesthesia cases. Each case must be viewed in its own light and scrutinized in order to be within the res ipsa loquitur coverage. - Res ipsa loquitur is a Latin phrase which literally means the thing or the transaction speaks for itself. The phrase res ipsa loquitur is a maxim for the rule that the fact of the occurrence of an injury, taken with the surrounding circumstances, may permit an inference or raise a presumption of negligence, or make out a plaintiffs prima facie case, and present a question of fact for defendant to meet with an explanation. Where the thing which caused the injury complained of is shown to be under the management of the defendant or his servants and the accident is such as in ordinary course of things does not happen if those who have its management or control use proper care, it affords reasonable evidence, in the absence of explanation by the defendant, that the accident arose from or was caused by the defendants want of care. - The doctrine of res ipsa loquitur is simply a recognition of the postulate that, as a matter of common knowledge and experience, the very nature of certain types of occurrences may justify an inference of negligence on the part of the person who controls the instrumentality causing the injury in the absence of some explanation by the defendant who is charged with negligence. It is grounded in the superior logic of ordinary human experience and on the basis of such experience or common knowledge, negligence may be deduced from the mere occurrence of the accident itself. Hence, res ipsa loquitur is applied in conjunction with the doctrine of common knowledge.

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diagnosis was not correct, or why any particular scientific treatment did not produce the desired result. Thus, res ipsa loquitur is not available in a malpractice suit if the only showing is that the desired result of an operation or treatment was not accomplished. The real question, therefore, is whether or not in the process of the operation any extraordinary incident or unusual event outside of the routine performance occurred which is beyond the regular scope of customary professional activity in such operations, which, if unexplained would themselves reasonably speak to the average man as the negligent cause or causes of the untoward consequence. If there was such extraneous interventions, the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur may be utilized and the defendant is called upon to explain the matter, by evidence of exculpation, if he could. 3. YES - The CA commited a reversible error. Private respondents were unable to disprove the presumption of negligence on their part in the care of Erlinda and their negligence was the proximate cause of her piteous condition. - Dra. Gutierrez failed to properly intubate the patient. In the case at bar, respondent Dra. Gutierrez admitted that she saw Erlinda for the first time on the day of the operation itself, on 17 June 1985. Before this date, no prior consultations with, or pre-operative evaluation of Erlinda was done by her. Until the day of the operation, respondent Dra. Gutierrez was unaware of the physiological make-up and needs of Erlinda. She was likewise not properly informed of the possible difficulties she would face during the administration of anesthesia to Erlinda. Respondent Dra. Gutierrez act of seeing her patient for the first time only an hour before the scheduled operative procedure was, therefore, an act of exceptional negligence and professional irresponsibility. The measures cautioning prudence and vigilance in dealing with human lives lie at the core of the physicians centuries-old Hippocratic Oath. Her failure to follow this medical procedure is, therefore, a clear indicia of her negligence. - Private respondents repeatedly hammered the view that the cerebral anoxia which led to Erlindas coma was due to bronchospasm mediated by her allergic response to the drug, Thiopental Sodium, introduced into her system. Towards this end, they presented Dr. Jamora, a Fellow of the Philippine College of Physicians and Diplomate of the Philippine Specialty Board of Internal Medicine, who advanced private respondents' theory that the oxygen deprivation which led to anoxic encephalopathy, was due to an unpredictable drug reaction to the short-acting barbiturate. We find the theory of private respondents unacceptable. - First of all, Dr. Jamora cannot be considered an authority in the field of anesthesiology simply because he is not an anesthesiologist. Since Dr. Jamora is a pulmonologist, he could not have been capable of properly enlightening the court about anesthesia practice and procedure and their complications. Dr. Jamora is likewise not an allergologist and could not therefore properly advance expert opinion on allergic-mediated processes. Moreover, he is not a pharmacologist and, as such, could not have been capable, as an expert would, of explaining to the court the pharmacologic and toxic effects of the supposed culprit, Thiopental Sodium (Pentothal). - An anesthetic accident caused by a rare drug-induced bronchospasm properly falls within the fields of anesthesia, internal medicine-allergy, and clinical pharmacology. The resulting anoxic encephalopathy belongs to the field of neurology. On the basis of the foregoing transcript, in which the pulmonologist himself admitted that he could not testify about the drug with medical authority, it is clear that the appellate court erred in giving weight to Dr. Jamoras testimony as an expert in the administration of Thiopental Sodium.

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employer-employee relationship in effect exists between hospitals and their attending and visiting physicians. This being the case, the question now arises as to whether or not respondent hospital is solidarily liable with respondent doctors for petitioners condition. - The basis for holding an employer solidarily responsible for the negligence of its employee is found in Article 2180 of the Civil Code which considers a person accountable not only for his own acts but also for those of others based on the formers responsibility under a relationship of patria potestas. Such responsibility ceases when the persons or entity concerned prove that they have observed the diligence of a good father of the family to prevent damage. In other words, while the burden of proving negligence rests on the plaintiffs, once negligence is shown, the burden shifts to the respondents (parent, guardian, teacher or employer) who should prove that they observed the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage. - In the instant case, respondent hospital, apart from a general denial of its responsibility over respondent physicians, failed to adduce evidence showing that it exercised the diligence of a good father of a family in the hiring and supervision of the latter. It failed to adduce evidence with regard to the degree of supervision which it exercised over its physicians. In neglecting to offer such proof, or proof of a similar nature, respondent hospital thereby failed to discharge its burden under the last paragraph of Article 2180. Having failed to do this, respondent hospital is consequently solidarily responsible with its physicians for Erlindas condition. - Upon these disquisitions we hold that private respondents are solidarily liable for damages under Article 2176 of the Civil Code. 4. Given these considerations, the amount of actual damages recoverable in suits arising from negligence should at least reflect the correct minimum cost of proper care, not the cost of the care the family is usually compelled to undertake at home to avoid bankruptcy. - Art. 2199. - Except as provided by law or by stipulation, one is entitled to an adequate compensation only for such pecuniary loss suffered by him as he has duly proved. Such compensation is referred to as actual or compensatory damages. - Our rules on actual or compensatory damages generally assume that at the time of litigation, the injury suffered as a consequence of an act of negligence has been completed and that the cost can be liquidated. However, these provisions neglect to take into account those situations, as in this case, where the resulting injury might be continuing and possible future complications directly arising from the injury, while certain to occur, are difficult to predict. - In these cases, the amount of damages which should be awarded, if they are to adequately and correctly respond to the injury caused, should be one which compensates for pecuniary loss incurred and proved, up to the time of trial; and one which would meet pecuniary loss certain to be suffered but which could not, from the nature of the case, be made with certainty. In other words, temperate damages can and should be awarded on top of actual or compensatory damages in instances where the injury is chronic and continuing. And because of the unique nature of such cases, no incompatibility arises when both actual and temperate damages are provided for. The reason is that these damages cover two distinct phases. - As it would not be equitable - and certainly not in the best interests of the administration of justice - for the victim in such cases to constantly come before the courts and invoke their aid in seeking adjustments to the compensatory damages previously awarded - temperate damages are appropriate. The amount given as temperate damages, though to a certain extent speculative, should take into account the cost of proper care.

- Proximate cause has been defined as that which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces injury, and without which the result would not have occurred. An injury or damage is proximately caused by an act or a 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. It is the dominant, moving or producing cause. - Respondent Dr. Hosakas negligence can be found in his failure to exercise the proper authority (as the captain of the operative team) in not determining if his anesthesiologist observed proper anesthesia protocols. In fact, no evidence on record exists to show that respondent Dr. Hosaka verified if respondent Dra. Gutierrez properly intubated the patient. Furthermore, it does not escape us that respondent Dr. Hosaka had scheduled another procedure in a different hospital at the same time as Erlindas cholecystectomy, and was in fact over three hours late for the latters operation. Because of this, he had little or no time to confer with his anesthesiologist regarding the anesthesia delivery. This indicates that he was remiss in his professional duties towards his patient. Thus, he shares equal responsibility for the events which resulted in Erlindas condition. - We now discuss the responsibility of the hospital in this particular incident. The unique practice (among private hospitals) of filling up specialist staff with attending and visiting consultants, who are allegedly not hospital employees, presents problems in apportioning responsibility for negligence in medical malpractice cases. However, the difficulty is only more apparent than real. - In the first place, hospitals exercise significant control in the hiring and firing of consultants and in the conduct of their work within the hospital premises. Doctors who apply for consultant slots, visiting or attending, are required to submit proof of completion of residency, their educational qualifications; generally, evidence of accreditation by the appropriate board (diplomate), evidence of fellowship in most cases, and references. These requirements are carefully scrutinized by members of the hospital administration or by a review committee set up by the hospital who either accept or reject the application. This is particularly true with respondent hospital. - After a physician is accepted, either as a visiting or attending consultant, he is normally required to attend clinico-pathological conferences, conduct bedside rounds for clerks, interns and residents, moderate grand rounds and patient audits and perform other tasks and responsibilities, for the privilege of being able to maintain a clinic in the hospital, and/or for the privilege of admitting patients into the hospital. In addition to these, the physicians performance as a specialist is generally evaluated by a peer review committee on the basis of mortality and morbidity statistics, and feedback from patients, nurses, interns and residents. A consultant remiss in his duties, or a consultant who regularly falls short of the minimum standards acceptable to the hospital or its peer review committee, is normally politely terminated. - In other words, private hospitals, hire, fire and exercise real control over their attending and visiting consultant staff. While consultants are not, technically employees, a point which respondent hospital asserts in denying all responsibility for the patients condition, the control exercised, the hiring, and the right to terminate consultants all fulfill the important hallmarks of an employer-employee relationship, with the exception of the payment of wages. In assessing whether such a relationship in fact exists, the control test is determining. Accordingly, on the basis of the foregoing, we rule that for the purpose of allocating responsibility in medical negligence cases, an

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- In the instant case, petitioners were able to provide only home-based nursing care for a comatose patient who has remained in that condition for over a decade. Having premised our award for compensatory damages on the amount provided by petitioners at the onset of litigation, it would be now much more in step with the interests of justice if the value awarded for temperate damages would allow petitioners to provide optimal care for their loved one in a facility which generally specializes in such care. They should not be compelled by dire circumstances to provide substandard care at home without the aid of professionals, for anything less would be grossly inadequate. Under the circumstances, an award of P1,500,000.00 in temperate damages would therefore be reasonable. - Meanwhile, the actual physical, emotional and financial cost of the care of petitioner would be virtually impossible to quantify. Even the temperate damages herein awarded would be inadequate if petitioners condition remains unchanged for the next ten years. - The husband and the children, all petitioners in this case, will have to live with the day to day uncertainty of the patients illness, knowing any hope of recovery is close to nil. They have fashioned their daily lives around the nursing care of petitioner, altering their long term goals to take into account their life with a comatose patient. They, not the respondents, are charged with the moral responsibility of the care of the victim. The familys moral injury and suffering in this case is clearly a real one. For the foregoing reasons, an award of P2,000,000.00 in moral damages would be appropriate. - Finally, by way of example, exemplary damages in the amount of P100,000.00 are hereby awarded. Considering the length and nature of the instant suit we are of the opinion that attorneys fees valued at P100,000.00 are likewise proper. DISPOSITION the decision and resolution of the appellate court appealed from are hereby modified so as to award in favor of petitioners, and solidarily against private respondents the following: 1) P1,352,000.00 as actual damages computed as of the date of promulgation of this decision plus a monthly payment of P8,000.00 up to the time that petitioner Erlinda Ramos expires or miraculously survives; 2) P2,000,000.00 as moral damages, 3) P1,500,000.00 as temperate damages; 4) P100,000.00 each as exemplary damages and attorneys fees; and, 5) the costs of the suit.

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- While the petitioners claim that contradictions and falsities punctured Dr. Kho's testimony, a reading of the said testimony reveals no such infirmity and establishes Dr. Kho as a credible witness. Dr. Kho was frank throughout her turn on the witness stand. Furthermore, no motive to state any untruth was ever imputed against Dr. Kho, leaving her trustworthiness unimpaired. The trial court's following declaration shows that while it was critical of the lack of care with which Dr. Kho handled the piece of rubber, it was not prepared to doubt Dr. Kho's credibility, thus only supporting out appraisal of Dr. Kho's trustworthiness. - Considering that we have assessed Dr. Kho to be a credible witness, her positive testimony prevails over the negative testimony in favor of the petitioners. As such, the rule of res ipsa loquitur comes to fore. - This doctrine is stated thus: "Where the thing which causes injury is shown to be under the management of the defendant, and the accident is such as in the ordinary course of things does not happen if those who have the management use proper care, it affords reasonable evidence, in the absence of an explanation by the defendant, that the accident arose from want of care." - In the instant case, all the requisites for recourse to the doctrine are present. First, the entire proceedings of the cesarean section were under the exclusive control of Dr. Batiquin. In this light, the private respondents were bereft of direct evidence as to the actual culprit or the exact cause of the foreign object finding its way into private respondent Villegas' body, which, needless to say, does not occur unless through the intervention of negligence. Second, since aside from the cesarean section, private respondent Villegas underwent no other operation which could have caused the offending piece of rubber to appear in her uterus, it stands to reason that such could only have been a by-product of the cesarean section performed by Dr. Batiquin. The petitioners, in this regard, failed to overcome the presumption of negligence arising from resort to the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur. Dr. Batiquin is therefore liable for negligently leaving behind a piece of rubber in private respondent Villegas' abdomen and for all the adverse effects thereof DISPOSITION Decision affirmed

- When Dr. Kho opened the abdomen of Mrs. Villegas she found whitishyellow discharge inside, an ovarian cyst on each of the left and right ovaries which gave out pus, dirt and pus behind the uterus, and a piece of rubber material on the right side of the uterus, embedded on the ovarian cyst. The piece of rubber appeared to be a part of a rubber glove. This was the cause of all of the infection of the ovaries and consequently of all the discomfort suffered by Mrs. Villegas - The piece of rubber allegedly found was not presented in court, and Dr. Kho testified that she sent it to a pathologist in Cebu City for examination. Aside from Dr. Kho's testimony, the evidence which mentioned the piece of rubber are a Medical Certificate, a Progress Record, an Anesthesia Record, a Nurse's Record, and a Physician's Discharge Summary. The trial court, however, regarded these documentary evidence as mere hearsay, "there being no showing that the person or persons who prepared them are deceased or unable to testify on the facts therein stated - There was also doubts as to the whereabouts of the piece of rubber, as 2 versions arose from Dr. Khos testimony: 1) that it was sent to the Pathologist in Cebu as testified to in Court by Dr. Kho and (2) that Dr. Kho threw it away as told by her to Defendant. The failure of the Plaintiffs to reconcile these two different versions served only to weaken their claim against Defendant Batiquin. The trial court ruled in favor of the defendants. The CA reversed the decision.

ISSUES Procedural WON the court can review questions of fact Substantive WON Dr. Batiquin is liable HELD Procedural YES - While the rule is that only questions of law may be raised in a petition for review on certiorari, there are exceptions, among which are when the factual findings of the trial court and the appellate court conflict, when the appealed decision is clearly contradicted by the evidence on record, or when the appellate court misapprehended the facts Substantive - The focal point of the appeal is Dr. Khos testimony. There were inconsistencies within her own testimony, which led to the different decision of the RTC and CA. The CA was correct in saying that the trial court erred when it isolated the disputed portion of Dr. Khos testimony and did not consider it with other portions of Dr. Khos testimony. Also, the phrase relied upon by the trial court does not negate the fact that Dr. Kho saw a piece of rubber in private respondent Villegas' abdomen, and that she sent it to a laboratory and then to Cebu City for examination by a pathologist. Furthermore, Dr. Kho's knowledge of the piece of rubber could not be based on other than first hand knowledge for, as she asserted before the trial court. - It is also worth noting that the trial court paid heed to Dr. Batiquins testimony, that there was neither any tear on Dr. Batiquin's gloves after the operation nor blood smears on her hands upon removing her gloves. But the trial court failed to recognized that these were mere denials or negative testimonies. Well-settled is the rule that positive testimony is stronger than negative testimony.

BATIQUIN V CA (Villegas) 258 SCRA 334 DAVIDE; July 5, 1996


NATURE Petition for review of the decision of the Court of Appeals FACTS - Mrs. Villegas submitted to Dr. Batiquin for prenatal care as the latter's private patient sometime before September 21, 1988. In the morning of September 21, 1988 Dr. Batiquin, along with other physicians and nurses, performed a caesarian operation on Mrs. Villegas and successfully delivered the latters baby. - After leaving the hospital, Mrs. Villegas began to suffer abdominal pains and complained of being feverish. She also gradually lost her appetite, so she consulted Dr. Batiquin at the latter's polyclinic who prescribed for her certain medicines. However, the pains still kept recurring. She then consulted Dr. Ma. Salud Kho. After examining her, Dr Kho suggested that Mrs. Villegas submit to another surgery.

D.M. CONSUNJI V CA KAPUNAN; April 20, 2001


NATURE Appeal from CA affirming decision of RTC ordering defendant D.M. Consunji, Inc. to pay damages to plaintiff Maria J. Juego FACTS - At around 1:30 p.m., November 2, 1990, Jose Juego, a construction worker of D. M. Consunji, Inc., fell 14 floors from the Renaissance Tower, Pasig City to his death. Investigation disclosed that while victim Jose A. Juego together with Jessie Jaluag and Delso Destajo were performing their work on board a steel platform with plywood flooring and cable wires attached to its four corners and hooked at the 5 ton chain block, when suddenly, the bolt or pin which was merely inserted to connect the chain block with the platform came loose causing the whole platform assembly and the victim to fall down to the basement of the elevator core of the building under construction, save his 2 companions who luckily jumped out for safety. - On May 9, 1991, Jose Juegos widow, Maria, filed in the RTC of Pasig a complaint for damages against D.M. Consunji, Inc. The employer raised,

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among other defenses, the widows prior availment of the benefits from the State Insurance Fund. After trial, the RTC rendered a decision in favor of the widow. On appeal by D. M. Consunji, the CA affirmed the decision of the RTC in toto. ISSUES 1. WON the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur is applicable to prove petitioners negligence 2. WON respondent is precluded from recovering damages under the Civil Code HELD 1. YES Ratio As a rule of evidence, the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur is peculiar to the law of negligence which recognizes that prima facie negligence may be established without direct proof and furnishes a substitute for specific proof of negligence. It is based in part upon the theory that the defendant in charge of the instrumentality which causes the injury either knows the cause of the accident or has the best opportunity of ascertaining it and that the plaintiff has no such knowledge, and therefore is compelled to allege negligence in general terms and to rely upon the proof of the happening of the accident in order to establish negligence. Res ipsa loquitur is a rule of necessity and it applies where evidence is absent or not readily available, provided the following requisites are present: (1) the accident was of a kind which does not ordinarily occur unless someone is negligent; (2) the instrumentality or agency which caused the injury was under the exclusive control of the person charged with negligence; and (3) the injury suffered must not have been due to any voluntary action or contribution on the part of the person injured. No worker is going to fall from the 14th floor of a building to the basement while performing work in a construction site unless someone is negligent; thus, the first requisite is present. As explained earlier, the construction site with all its paraphernalia and human resources that likely caused the injury is under the exclusive control and management of appellant; thus, the second requisite is also present. No contributory negligence was attributed to the appellees deceased husband; thus, the last requisite is also present. A reasonable presumption or inference of appellants negligence arises. Regrettably, petitioner does not cite any evidence to rebut the inference or presumption of negligence arising from the application of res ipsa loquitur, or to establish any defense relating to the incident. 2. NO Ratio Claimants may invoke either the Workmens Compensation Act or the provisions of the Civil Code, subject to the consequence that the choice of one remedy will exclude the other and that the acceptance of compensation under the remedy chosen will preclude a claim for additional benefits under the other remedy. The exception is where a claimant who has already been paid under the Workmens Compensation Act may still sue for damages under the Civil Code on the basis of supervening facts or developments occurring after he opted for the first remedy. The choice of a party between inconsistent remedies results in a waiver by election. Waiver requires a knowledge of the facts basic to the exercise of the right waived, with an awareness of its consequences. That a waiver is made knowingly and intelligently must be illustrated on the record or by the evidence. There is no showing that private respondent knew of the remedies available to her when

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Reasoning - The death of Magno was primarily caused by his own negligence, and in some measure by the too close proximity of the media agua to the electric wire of the company by reason of the violation of the original permit given by the city and the subsequent approval of said illegal construction of the media agua. Had the house owner followed the terms of the permit given him by the city for the construction of his media agua, the distance from the wires to the edge of said media agua would have been 3ft and 11 3/8 inches. - The company cannot be expected to be always on the lookout for any illegal construction which reduces the distance between its wires and said construction, and to change the installation of its wires so as to preserve said distance. - The violation of the permit for the construction was not the direct cause of the accident. It merely contributed to it. The real cause of the accident or death was the reckless or negligent act of Magno himself. It is to be presumed that due to his age and experience he was qualified to do so. He had training and experience for the job. He could not have been entirely a stranger to electric wires and the danger lurking in them. - To hold the defendant liable in damages for the death of Magno, such supposed negligence of the company must have been the proximate and principal cause of the accident. Disposition The appealed decision of the CA is reversed, and complaint against the Company dismissed.

the claim before the ECC was filed. On the contrary, private respondent testified that she was not aware of her rights. DISPOSITION The case is REMANDED to the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City to determine whether the award decreed in its decision is more than that of the ECC, whereupon payments already made to private respondent pursuant to the Labor Code shall be deducted therefrom. In all other respects, the Decision of the CA is AFFIRMED.

MANILA ELECTRIC CO. V REMONQUILLO 99 PHIL 117 MONTEMAYOR; May 18, 1956
NATURE Petition for review by certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals. FACTS - August 22, 1950: Efren Magno went to the house of Antonio Pealoza, hid stepbrother, on Rodriguez Lanuza St, Manila, to repair a leaking media agua. The media agua was just below the window of the third story. - Standing on said media agua, Magno received from his son thru the window a 3x6 galvanized iron sheet to cover the leaking portion. The lower end of the iron sheet came into contact with the electric wire of the Manila Electric Company parallel to the media agua and 2 feet from it, causing his death by electrocution. - his widow and children filed suit to recover damages from the company. Trial court rendered judgment in their favor. Court of Appeals affirmed the decision. - The electric wire in question was an exposed, uninsulated primary wire stretched between poles pm the street and carrying a charge of 3600 volts. It was installed there some two years ago before Pealozas house was constructed. During the construction of said house a similar incident took place, with less tragic consequences. The owner of the house complained to defendant about the danger which the wire presented, and defendant moved one end of the wire farther from the house by means of a brace, but left the other end where it was. - Regulations of the City required that all wires be kept three feet from the building. - There was no insulation that could have rendered it safe, because there is no insulation material in commercial use for such kind of wire (according to appellant, and this was not refuted). Petitioners Claim - Owner of the house exceeded the limit for the construction of the media agua (17% more). Respondents Comment Owner was given final permit despite the excess of the media agua. ISSUE WON Manila Electric is guilty of negligence. HELD NO - It was the victim who was guilty of negligence Ratio the liability of electric companies for damages or personal injury is governed by the rules of negligence, nevertheless such companies are not insurers of the safety of the public.

BERNARDO V LEGASPI 29 Phil 12 MORELAND; December 23, 1914


NATURE Appeal from a judgment of CFI Manila dismissing the complaint on the merits filed in an action to recover damages for injuries FACTS - Due to a collision between the respective automobiles of Bernardo and Legaspi, the former filed an action to recover damages for injuries sustained by his car which he alleged were by reason of Legaspi's negligence in causing said collision. Legaspi, on the other hand, filed a cross-complaint alleging it was Bernardo's fault. He also asks for damages. - The lower court found upon the evidence that both the plaintiff and the defendant were negligent in handling their automobiles and that said negligence was of such a character and extent on the part of both as to prevent either from recovering. ISSUE WON the parties may recover damages HELD 1. NO - Where two automobiles, going in opposite directions, collide on turning a street corner, and it appears from the evidence and is found by the trial court that the drivers thereof were equally negligent and contributed equally to the

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principal occurrence as determining causes thereof, neither can recover of the other for damages suffered.

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ceiling collapsed." Having interposed it as a defense, it had the burden to prove that the collapse was indeed caused by force majeure. That Mr. Ong could not offer any explanation does not imply force majeure. - Definitions of force majeure as cited in Pons y Compaia vs. La Compaia Maritima: 1. Blackstone, in his Commentaries on English Law: Inevitable accident or casualty; an accident produced by any physical cause which is irresistible; such as lightning. tempest, perils of the sea, inundation, or earthquake; the sudden illness or death of a person. 2. Escriche, in his Diccionario de Legislacion y Jurisprudenci,: The event which we could neither foresee nor resist; as for example, the lightning stroke, hail, inundation, hurricane, public enemy, attack by robbers; Vis major est, says Cayo, ea quae consilio humano neque provideri neque vitari potest. Accident and mitigating circumstances. 3. Bouvier: Any accident due to natural cause, directly exclusively without human intervention, such as could not have been prevented by any kind of oversight, pains and care reasonably to have been expected. 4. Corkburn, chief justice, in a well considered English case, said that were a captain uses all the known means to which prudent and experienced captains ordinarily have recourse, he does all that can be reasonably required of him; and if, under such circumstances, he is overpowered by storm or other natural agency, he is within the rule which gives immunity from the effects of such vis major. The term generally applies, broadly speaking, to natural accidents, such as those caused by lightning, earthquake, tempests, public enemy ,etc. -The real reason why Mr. Ong could not explain the cause or reason is that either he did not actually conduct the investigation or that he isincompetent. He is not an engineer, but an architect who had not even passed the government's examination. - Verily, post-incident investigation cannot be considered as material to the present proceedings. What is significant is the finding of the trial court, affirmed by the respondent Court, that the collapse was due to construction defects. There was no evidence offered to overturn this finding. - The building was constructed barely 4 years prior to the accident in question. It was not shown that any of the causes denominates as force majeure obtained immediately before or at the time of the collapse of the ceiling. Such defects could have been easily discovered if only petitioner exercised due diligence and care in keeping and maintaining the premises. But as disclosed by the testimony of Mr. Ong, there was no adequate inspection of the premises before the date of the accident. - That the structural designs and plans of the building were duly approved by the City Engineer and the building permits and certificate of occupancy were issued do not at all prove that there were no defects in the construction, especially as regards the ceiling, considering that no testimony was offered to prove that it was ever inspected at all. - It is settled that: The owner or proprietor of a place of public amusement impliedly warrants that the premises, appliances and amusement devices are safe for the purpose for which they are designed, the doctrine being subject to no other exception or qualification than that he does not contract against unknown defects not discoverable by ordinary or reasonable means. - This implied warranty has given rise to the rule that: Where a patron of a theater or other place of public amusement is injured, and the thing that caused the injury is wholly and exclusively under the control and management of the defendant, and the accident

BERNAL V HOUSE 54 PHIL 327 MALCOLM; January 30, 1930


FACTS - Fortunata Enverso with her daughter Purificacion Bernal went to Tacloban, Leyte to attend the procession of Holy Friday. - After the procession, they, accompanied by two other persons, passed along a public street named Gran Capitan. - The little girl was allowed to get a short distance in advance of her mother and her friends. - While in front of the offices of the Tacloban Electric & Ice Plant, Ltd., an automobile appeared on which frightened the child. She turned to run, but fell into the street gutter. At that time there was hot water in this gutter or ditch coming from the Electric Ice Plant of J.V. House. - When the mother and her companions reached the child, they found her face downward in the hot water. - The girl was taken to the provincial hospital. Despite his efforts, the child died that same night. - It was certified that the cause of death was "Burns, 3rd Degree, whole Body", and that the contributory causes were "Congestion of the Brain and visceras of the chest & abdomen. - The defense was that the hot water was permitted to flow down the side of the street Gran Captain with the knowledge and consent of the authorities; that the cause of death was other than the hot water; and that in the death the plaintiffs contributed by their own fault and negligence. - The trial judge, however, after examination of the evidence presented by the defendants, failed to sustain their theory of the case, except as to the last mentioned special defense. He nevertheless was led to order the dismissal of the action because of the contributory negligence of the plaintiffs. ISSUE WON the action should be dismissed due to the contributory negligence of the plaintiffs

and her mother, if any, does not operate as a bar to recovery, but in its strictest sense could only result in reduction of the damages. DISPOSITION Judgment appealed from was in part be reversed and in the court of origin another judgment was issued in favor of Fortunata Enverso and against J.V. House for the amount of P1,000, and for the costs of both instances.

SEPARATE OPINION ROMUALDEZ [dissent]


- Even taking the finding that the defendant by its negligence helped to bring about the accident which resulted in the death of the child Purificacion Bernal, plaintiff, by negligence, contributed to that most regrettable result. - Judgment appealed from should be affirmed.

GOTESCO INVESTMENT CORPORATION V CHATTO 210 SCRA 18 DAVIDE JR.; June 16, 1992
FACTS - Plaintiff Gloria E. Chatto, and her 15-year old daughter, Lina Delza E. Chatto went to see the movie "Mother Dear" at Superama I theater, owned by defendant Gotesco Investment Corporation. - Hardly ten (10) minutes after entering the theater, the ceiling of its balcony collapsed. The theater was plunged into darkness and pandemonium ensued. - Shocked and hurt, plaintiffs managed to crawl under the fallen ceiling. As soon as they were able to get out to the street they walked the nearby FEU Hospital where they were confined and treated for one (1) day. - The next day, they transferred to the UST hospital. Plaintiff Gloria Chatto was treated in said hospital from June 5 to June 19 and plaintiff Lina Delza Chatto from June 5 to 11. - Due to continuing pain in the neck, headache and dizziness, plaintiff went to Illinois, USA in July 1982 for further treatment. She was treated at the Cook County Hospital in Chicago, Illinois. She stayed in the U.S. for about three (3) months during which time she had to return to the Cook County Hospital five (5) or, six (6) times. - Defendant tried to avoid liability by alleging that the collapse of the ceiling of its theater was done due to force majeure. It maintained that its theater did not suffer from any structural or construction defect. - The trial court awarded actual or compensatory and moral damages and attorney's fees to the plaintiffs. - Respondent Court found the appeal later filed to be without merit. - Its motion for reconsideration of the decision having been denied by the respondent Court, petitioner filed the petition in the SC. ISSUE WON the collapse of the ceiling was caused by force majeur HELD NO - Petitioner's claim that the collapse of the ceiling of the theater's balcony was due to force majeure is not even founded on facts because its own witness, Mr. Jesus Lim Ong, admitted that "he could not give any reason why the

HELD NO - The death of the child was the result of fault and negligence in permitting hot water to flow through the public streets, there to endanger the lives of passers-by who were unfortunately enough to fall into it - The mother and her child had a perfect right to be on the principal street of Tacloban, Leyte, on the evening when the religious procession was held. - There was nothing abnormal in allowing the child to run along a few paces in advance of the mother. No one could foresee the coincidence of an automobile appearing and of a frightened child running and falling into a ditch filled with hot water. - The doctrines announced in the much debated case of Rakes vs. Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific Co. ([1907], 7 Phil., 359), still rule. Article 1902 of the Civil Code must again be enforced. The contributory negligence of the child

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is such as in the ordinary course of events would not have happened if proper care had been exercised, its occurrence raises a presumption or permits of an inference of negligence on the part of the defendant. - That presumption or inference was not overcome by the petitioner. - Even assuming that the cause of the collapse was due to force majeure, petitioner would still be liable because it was guilty of negligence, which the trial court denominated as gross. As gleaned from Bouvier's definition of and Cockburn's elucidation on force majeure for one to be exempt from any liability because of it, he must have exercised care, i.e., he should not have been guilty of negligence. Disposition Judgment was denying the instant petition with costs against petitioner.

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Orbeta, CA-G.R. No. 321, March 29, 1947)." (People vs. Quiones, 44 O.G. 1520) Disposition the appealed decision is affirmed with modification as to the civil liability of the petitioner which is hereby increased to P30,000. Costs against petitioner.

PLDT V CA (SPS ESTEBAN) REGALADO; September 29, 1989 [CITATION]


NATURE Petition for certiorari to review the resolution of the Court of Appeals. FACTS - July 30, 1968 Jeep of Esteban spouses ran over a mound of earth and fell into an open trench, an excavation allegedly undertaken by PLDT for the installation of its underground conduit system. The complaint alleged that respondent Antonio Esteban failed to notice the open trench which was left uncovered because of the creeping darkness and the lack of any warning light or signs. - Gloria Esteban allegedly sustained injuries on her arms, legs and face, leaving a permanent scar on her cheek, while the respondent husband suffered cut lips. In addition, the windshield of the jeep was shattered. - PLDT, in its answer, denies liability on the contention that the injuries sustained by respondent spouses were the result of their own negligence and that the entity which should be held responsible, if at all, is L.R. Barte and Company, an independent contractor which undertook the said construction work. - TC ruled in favor of Esteban spouses whereas the CA reversed the ruling. ISSUE WON the Esteban spouses can claim damages from PLDT HELD NO Ratio A person claiming damages for the negligence of another has the burden of proving the existence of such fault or negligence causative thereof. The facts constitutive of negligence must be affirmatively established by competent evidence. Reasoning - The accident was due to the lack of diligence of respondent Antonio Esteban and was not imputable to negligent omission on the part of petitioner PLDT. > Jeep was running along the inside lane of Lacson Street. If it had remained on that inside lane, it would not have hit the accident mound > That plaintiffs jeep was on the inside lane before it swerved to hit the ACCIDENT MOUND could have been corroborated by a picture showing Lacson Street to the south of the ACCIDEN MOUND.

> Plaintiffs jeep was not running at 25 kilometers an hour as plaintiff husband claimed. At that speed, he could have braked the vehicle the moment it struck the ACCIDENT MOUND. > If the accident did not happen because the jeep was running quite fast on the inside lane and for some reason or other it had to swerve suddenly to the right and had to climb over the ACCIDENT MOUND, then plaintiff husband had not exercised the deligence of a good father of a family to avoid the accident. - The above findings clearly show that the negligence of respondent Antonio Esteban was not only contributory to his injuries and those of his wife but goes to the very cause of the occurrence of the accident, as one of its determining factors, and thereby precludes their right to recover damages. Disposition resolutions of respondent CA, dated March 11, 1990 and September 3, 1980, are hereby SET ASIDE, Its original decision, promulgated on September 25, 1979, is hereby REINSTATED and AFFIRMED.

RAKES V ATLANTIC [CITATION] [PONENTE]


NATURE Action for damages FACTS - The plaintiff, Rakes, one of a group of 8 African-American laborers in the employment of defendant, Atlantic, was at work transporting iron rails from the harbor in Manila. The men were hauling the rails on 2 hand cars, some behind or at it sides and some pulling the cars in the front by a rope. At one point, the track sagged, the tie broke, the car canted and the rails slid off and caught the plaintiff who was walking by the cars side, breaking his leg, which was later amputated at the knee. - The plaintiffs witness alleged that a noticeable depression in the track had appeared after a typhoon. This was reported to the foreman, Mckenna, but it had not been proven that Atlantic inspected the track or had any proper system of inspection. Also, there were no side guards on the cars to keep the rails from slipping off. - However, the companys officers and 3 of the workers testified that there was a general prohibition frequently made known to all against walking by the side of cars. As Rakes was walking along the cars side when the accident occurred, he was found to have contributed in some degree to the injury inflicted, although not as the primary cause. - Atlantic contends that the remedy for injury through negligence lies only in a criminal action against the official directly responsible and that the employer be held only subsidiarily liable. ISSUE WON there was contributory negligence on the part of petitioner HELD YES - Petitioner had walked along the side of the car despite a prohibition to do so by the foreman. -The negligence of the injured person contributing to his injury but not being one of the determining causes of the principal accident, does not operate as a bar to recovery, but only in reduction of his damages. Each party is chargeable with damages in proportion to his fault. - Trial court assessed that damages to plaintiff amount to PhP5,000. SC deducted PhP2,500, the amount fairly attributable to his own negligence.

GENOBIAGON V CA (PEOPLE OF THE PHILS) 178 SCRA 422 GRIO-AQUINO; October 22, 1957
NATURE Petition for review of the CAs decision affirming the conviction of the petitioner of the crime of homicide thru reckless imprudence. FACTS - On Dec 31, 1959, at about 7:30 PM, a rig driven by Genobiagon bumped an old woman who was crossing the street. The appellant's rig was following another at a distance of two meters. The old woman started to cross when the first rig was approaching her, but as appellant's vehicle was going so fast not only because of the steep down-grade of the road, but also because he was trying to overtake the rig ahead of him, the appellant's rig bumped the old woman, who fell at the middle of the road. The appellant continued to drive on, but a by-stander Mangyao saw the incident and shouted at the appellant to stop. He ran after appellant when the latter refused to stop. Overtaking the appellant, Mangyao asked him why he bumped the old woman and his answer was, 'it was the old woman that bumped him.' The appellant went back to the place where the old woman was struck by his rig. The old woman was unconscious. She was then loaded in a jeep and brought to the hospital where she died 3 hours later. - Genobiagon was convicted of homicide thru reckless imprudence. CA affirmed - Genobiagon claims CA erred in not finding that the reckless negligence of the victim was the proximate cause of the accident which led to her death ISSUES WON contributory negligence can be used as defense by Genobiagon HELD NO - The alleged contributory negligence of the victim, if any, does not exonerate the accused. - "The defense of contributory negligence does not apply in criminal cases committed through reckless imprudence, since one cannot allege the negligence of another to evade the effects of his own negligence (People vs.

SEPARATE OPINION WILLARD AND CARSON [dissent]

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- the negligence of the defendant alone was insufficient to cause the accidentit also required the negligence of the plaintiff. Because of this, plaintiff should not be afforded relief

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determine whose fault or negligence should be attributed to the incident, the one who had the last clear opportunity to avoid the impending harm and failed to do so is chargeable with the consequences thereof. The rule would also mean that an antecedent negligence of a person does not preclude the recovery of damages for the supervening negligence of, or bar a defense against liability sought by another, if the latter, who had the last fair chance, could have avoided the impending harm by the exercise of due diligence. Here, assuming that private respondent RMC was negligent in entrusting cash to a dishonest employee, thus providing the latter with the opportunity to defraud the company, as advanced by the petitioner, yet it cannot be denied that the petitioner bank, thru its teller, had the last clear opportunity to avert the injury incurred by its client, simply by faithfully observing their selfimposed validation procedure. - In the case of banks, the degree of diligence required is more than that of a good father of a family. Considering the fiduciary nature of their relationship with their depositors, banks are duty bound to treat the accounts of their clients with the highest degree of care. - The foregoing notwithstanding, it cannot be denied that, indeed, private respondent was likewise negligent in not checking its monthly statements of account. Had it done so, the company would have been alerted to the series of frauds being committed against RMC by its secretary. The damage would definitely not have ballooned to such an amount if only RMC, particularly Romeo Lipana, had exercised even a little vigilance in their financial affairs. This omission by RMC amounts to contributory negligence which shall mitigate the damages that may be awarded to the private respondent 23 under A2179 CC, to wit: . . . When the plaintiff's own negligence was the immediate and proximate cause of his injury, he cannot recover damages. But if his negligence was only contributory, the immediate and proximate cause of the injury being the defendant's lack of due care, the plaintiff may recover damages, but the courts shall mitigate the damages to be awarded. In view of this, we believe that the demands of substantial justice are satisfied by allocating the damage on a 60-40 ratio. Thus, 40% of the damage awarded by the respondent appellate court, except the award of P25,000.00 attorney's fees, shall be borne by private respondent RMC; only the balance of 60% needs to be paid by the petitioners. The award of attorney's fees shall be borne exclusively by the petitioner. Disposition the decision of the respondent Court of Appeals is modified by reducing the amount of actual damages private respondent is entitled to by 40%. Petitioners may recover from Ms. Azucena Mabayad the amount they would pay the private respondent. Private respondent shall have recourse against Ms. Irene Yabut. In all other respects, the appellate court's decision is AFFIRMED.

PHILIPPINE BANK OF COMMERCE V CA (ROMMELS MARKETING CORP.) 269 SCRA 695 HERMOSISIMA JR; March 14, 1997
NATURE Petition for review challenging the CA decision affirming the RTC decision in a civil case FACTS - the case stems from a complaint filed by Rommels Marketing Corporation (RMC) to recover from the former Philippine Bank of Commerce (PBC) the sum of P304,979.74 representing various deposits it had made in its current account with the bank but which were not credited, and were instead deposited to the account of one Bienvenido Cotas, allegedly due to the gross and inexcusable negligence of the petitioner bank. ISSUE What is the proximate cause of the loss, to the tune of P304,979.74, suffered by the private respondent RMC petitioner bank's negligence or that of private respondent's? HELD - The proximate cause of the loss was the negligent act of the bank, thru its teller Ms. Azucena Mabayad, in validating the deposit slips, both original and duplicate, presented by Ms. Yabut to Ms. Mabayad, notwithstanding the fact that one of the deposit slips was not completely accomplished. Ratio 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 Reasoning - There are three elements of a quasi-delict: (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. - In the case at bench, there is no dispute as to the damage suffered by the private respondent. Negligence is the omission to do something which a reasonable man, guided by those considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs, would do, or the doing of something which a prudent and reasonable man would do. - Test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular case: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. The law here in effect adopts the standard supposed to be supplied by the imaginary conduct of the discreet paterfamilias of the Roman law. The existence of negligence in a given case is not determined by reference to the personal judgment of the

actor in the situation before him. The law considers what would be reckless, blameworthy, or negligent in the man of ordinary intelligence and prudence and determines liability by that. - Applying the above test, it appears that the bank's teller, Ms. Azucena Mabayad, was negligent in validating, officially stamping and signing all the deposit slips prepared and presented by Ms. Yabut, despite the glaring fact that the duplicate copy was not completely accomplished contrary to the selfimposed procedure of the bank with respect to the proper validation of deposit slips, original or duplicate, as testified to by Ms. Mabayad herself. - The fact that the duplicate slip was not compulsorily required by the bank in accepting deposits should not relieve the petitioner bank of responsibility. The odd circumstance alone that such duplicate copy lacked one vital information that of the name of the account holder should have already put Ms. Mabayad on guard. Rather than readily validating the incomplete duplicate copy, she should have proceeded more cautiously by being more probing as to the true reason why the name of the account holder in the duplicate slip was left blank while that in the original was filled up. She should not have been so naive in accepting hook, line and sinker the too shallow excuse of Ms. Irene Yabut to the effect that since the duplicate copy was only for her personal record, she would simply fill up the blank space later on. 11 A "reasonable man of ordinary prudence" 12 would not have given credence to such explanation and would have insisted that the space left blank be filled up as a condition for validation. Unfortunately, this was not how bank teller Mabayad proceeded thus resulting in huge losses to the private respondent. - Negligence here lies not only on the part of Ms. Mabayad but also on the part of the bank itself in its lackadaisical selection and supervision of Ms. Mabayad. In the testimony of Mr. Romeo Bonifacio, then Manager of the Pasig Branch of the petitioner, to the effect that, while he ordered the investigation of the incident, he never came to know that blank deposit slips were validated in total disregard of the bank's validation procedures. - It was in fact only when he testified in this case in February, 1983, or after the lapse of more than seven (7) years counted from the period when the funds in question were deposited in plaintiff's accounts (May, 1975 to July, 1976) that bank manager Bonifacio admittedly became aware of the practice of his teller Mabayad of validating blank deposit slips. Undoubtedly, this is gross, wanton, and inexcusable negligence in the appellant bank's supervision of its employees. - It was this negligence of Ms. Azucena Mabayad, coupled by the negligence of the petitioner bank in the selection and supervision of its bank teller, which was the proximate cause of the loss suffered by the private respondent, and not the latter's act of entrusting cash to a dishonest employee, as insisted by the petitioners. - Proximate cause is determined on the facts of each case upon mixed considerations of logic, common sense, policy and precedent. Bank of the Phil. Islands v. Court of Appeals, 17 defines proximate cause as "that cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result would not have occurred. . . ." In this case, absent the act of Ms. Mabayad in negligently validating the incomplete duplicate copy of the deposit slip, Ms. Irene Yabut would not have the facility with which to perpetrate her fraudulent scheme with impunity. - LAST CLEAR CHANCE: under the doctrine of "last clear chance" (also referred to, at times as "supervening negligence" or as "discovered peril"), petitioner bank was indeed the culpable party. This doctrine, in essence, states that where both parties are negligent, but the negligent act of one is appreciably later in time than that of the other, or when it is impossible to

SEPARATE OPINION PADILLA [dissent]


- It seems that an innocent bank teller is being unduly burdened with what should fall on Ms. Irene Yabut, RMC's own employee, who should have been charged with estafa or estafa through falsification of private document. Why is RMC insulating Ms. Irene Yabut from liability when in fact she orchestrated the entire fraud on RMC, her employer? - Going back to Yabut's modus operandi, it is not disputed that each time Yabut would transact business with PBC's tellers, she would accomplish two (2) copies of the current account deposit slip. PBC's deposit slip, as issued in 1975, had two parts. The upper part was called the depositor's stub and the

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lower part was called the bank copy. Both parts were detachable from each other. The deposit slip was prepared and signed by the depositor or his representative, who indicated therein the current account number to which the deposit was to be credited, the name of the depositor or current account holder, the date of the deposit, and the amount of the deposit either in cash or in checks. - Since Yabut deposited money in cash, the usual bank procedure then was for the teller to count whether the cash deposit tallied with the amount written down by the depositor in the deposit slip. If it did, then the teller proceeded to verify whether the current account number matched with the current account name as written in the deposit slip. - In the earlier days before the age of full computerization, a bank normally maintained a ledger which served as a repository of accounts to which debits and credits resulting from transactions with the bank were posted from books of original entry. Thus, it was only after the transaction was posted in the ledger that the teller proceeded to machine validate the deposit slip and then affix his signature or initial to serve as proof of the completed transaction. - It should be noted that the teller validated the depositor's stub in the upper portion and the bank copy on the lower portion on both the original and duplicate copies of the deposit slips presented by Yabut. The teller, however, detached the validated depositor's stub on the original deposit slip and allowed Yabut to retain the whole validated duplicate deposit slip that bore the same account number as the original deposit slip, but with the account name purposely left blank by Yabut, on the assumption that it would serve no other purpose but for a personal record to complement the original validated depositor's stub. - Thus, when Yabut wrote the name of RMC on the blank account name on the validated duplicate copy of the deposit slip, tampered with its account number, and superimposed RMC's account number, said act only served to cover-up the loss already caused by her to RMC, or after the deposit slip was validated by the teller in favor of Yabut's husband. Stated otherwise, when there is a clear evidence of tampering with any of the material entries in a deposit slip, the genuineness and due execution of the document become an issue in resolving whether or not the transaction had been fair and regular and whether the ordinary course of business had been followed by the bank. - The legal or proximate cause of RMC's loss was when Yabut, its employee, deposited the money of RMC in her husband's name and account number instead of that of RMC, the rightful owner of such deposited funds. Precisely, it was the criminal act of Yabut that directly caused damage to RMC, her employer, not the validation of the deposit slip by the teller as the deposit slip was made out by Yabut in her husband's name and to his account. - LAST CLEAR CHANCE: As for the doctrine of "last clear chance," it is my considered view that the doctrine assumes that the negligence of the defendant was subsequent to the negligence of the plaintiff and the same must be the proximate cause of the injury. In short, there must be a last and a clear chance, not a last possible chance, to avoid the accident or injury. It must have been a chance as would have enabled a reasonably prudent man in like position to have acted effectively to avoid the injury and the resulting damage to himself. - In the case at bar, the bank was not remiss in its duty of sending monthly bank statements to private respondent RMC so that any error or discrepancy in the entries therein could be brought to the bank's attention at the earliest opportunity. Private respondent failed to examine these bank statements not because it was prevented by some cause in not doing so, but because it was purposely negligent as it admitted that it does not normally check bank statements given by banks.

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petitioner that a public utility jeep running at a regular and safe speed will not jump into a ditch when its right rear tire blows up. There is also evidence to show that the passenger jeepney was overloaded at the time of the accident. The petitioner stated that there were 3 passengers in the front seat and 14 in the rear. - While it may be true that the tire that blew-up was still good because the grooves of the tire were still visible, this fact alone does not make the explosion of the tire a fortuitous event. No evidence was presented to show that the accident was due to adverse road conditions or that precautions were taken by the jeepney driver to compensate for any conditions liable to cause accidents. The sudden blowing-up, therefore, could have been caused by too much air pressure injected into the tire coupled by the fact that the jeepney was overloaded and speeding at the time of the accident. 2. NO Ratio A caso fortuito (fortuitous event) presents the following essential characteristics: 1. The cause of the unforeseen and unexpected occurrence, or of the failure of the debtor to comply with his obligation, must be independent of the human will 2. It must be impossible to foresee the even which constitutes the caso fortuito, or if it can be foreseen, it must be impossible to avoid 3. The occurrence must be such as to render it impossible for the debtor to fulfill his obligation in a normal manner 4. The obligor (debtor) must be free from any participation in the aggravation of the injury resulting to the creditor Reasoning - In the case at bar, the cause of the unforeseen and unexpected occurrence was not independent of the human will. The accident was caused either through the negligence of the driver or because of mechanical defects in the tire. Common carriers should teach their drivers not to overload their vehicles not to exceed safe and legal speed limits and to know the correct measures to take when a tire blows up thus insuring the safety of passengers at all times. - Relative to the contingency of mechanical defects, we held in Necesito, et al. v. Paras, et al, that: The preponderance of authority is in favor of the doctrine that a passenger is entitled to recover damages from a carrier for an injury resulting from a defect in an appliance purchased from a manufacturer, whenever it appears that the defect would have been discovered by the carrier if it had exercised the degree of care which under the circumstances was incumbent upon it. with regard to inspection and application of the necessary tests. For the purposes of this doctrine, the manufacturer is considered as being in law the agent or servant of the carrier, as far as regards the work of constructing the appliance. According to this theory, the good repute of the manufacturer will not relieve the carrier from liability. - It is sufficient to reiterate that the source of a common carrier's legal liability is the contract of carriage, and by entering into the said contract, it binds itself to carry the passengers safely as far as human care and foresight can provide, using the utmost diligence of a very cautious person, with a due regard for all the circumstances. The records show that this obligation was not met by the respondents. Disposition Decision appealed from is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Decision of City Court is REINSTATED

- It was private respondent who had the last and clear chance to prevent any further misappropriation by Yabut had it only reviewed the status of its current accounts on the bank statements sent to it monthly or regularly. Since a sizable amount of cash was entrusted to Yabut, private respondent should, at least, have taken ordinary care of its concerns, as what the law presumes. Its negligence, therefore, is not contributory but the immediate and proximate cause of its injury.

JUNTILLA V FONTANAR 136 SCRA 624 GUITERREZ JR; May 31, 1985
NATURE Petition to review the decision of CFI of Cebu FACTS - Petitioner Roberto Juntilla was sitting a the front seat of a jeepney (driven by one Berfol Camoro, registered under the franchise of Clemente Fontanar, but actually owned by Fernando Banzon) when its right rear tire exploded causing it to turn turtle. Plaintiff was thrown out of the vehicle and lost consciousness upon landing on the ground. When he came back to his senses, he found that he had a lacerated wound on his right palm, injuries on his left arm, right thigh and on his back and also found this Omega wrist watch was lost. He went to Danao city and upon arrival there he entered the City Hospital to attend to his injuries and asked his father-in-law to go to site of the accident to look for his watch but the watch was nowhere to be found. - Petitioner then filed a civil case for breach of contract with damages before the City Court of Cebu against Fontanar, Banzon, and Camoro, who filed their answer, alleging that the accident was beyond their control taking into account that the tire that exploded was newly bought and slightly used at the time it blew up. - City Court rendered judgment in favor of petitioner. The respondents then appealed to the CFI of Cebu, which reversed the judgment upon a finding that the accident in question was due to a fortuitous event. Petitioners MFR was denied, hence this appeal. ISSUES 1. WON the CFI erred in absolving the carrier from any liability upon a finding that the tire blow out is a fortuitous event 2. WON the accident was due to a fortuitous event HELD 1. YES - The CFI relied on the ruling of the CA in Rodriguez v Red Line Transportation Co., that a tire blow-out does not constitute negligence unless the tire was already old and should not have been used at all. This conclusion is based on a misapprehension of overall facts. In La Mallorca and Pampanga Bus Co. v De Jesus, et al, We held that, not only are the rulings of the CA in Rodriguez v Red Line Trans. Co. not binding on this Court but they were also based on considerations quite different from those that obtain in the case at bar. In the case at bar, there are specific acts of negligence on the part of the respondents. The records show that the passenger jeepney turned turtle and jumped into a ditch immediately after its right rear tire exploded. The evidence shows that the passenger jeepney was running at a very fast speed before the accident. We agree with the observation of the

HERNANDEZ V COMMISSION ON AUDIT 179 SCRA 39

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CRUZ; November 6, 1989
NATURE A petition to reverse Commission on Audits denial of relief FACTS - Teodoro M. Hernandez was the officer-in-charge and special disbursing officer of the Ternate Beach Project of the Philippine Tourism Authority in Cavite. He went to the main office in Manila to encash 2 checks covering the wages of the employees and the operating expenses of the Project. He estimated that the money would be available by 10am and that he would be back in Ternate by about 2pm of the same day. However, the processing of the checks was completed only at 3pm. The petitioner decided nevertheless to encash them because the Project employees would be waiting for their pay the following day. And so, he collected the cash value of the checks. The petitioner had two choices: (1) return to Cavite that same afternoon and arrive there in the early evening; or (2) take the money with him to his house in Marilao, Bulacan, spend the night there, and leave for Ternate the following morning. He opted for the second, thinking it the safer one. He took a passenger jeep bound for his house in Bulacan. It was while the vehicle was along EDSA that two persons with knives boarded and forcibly took the money he was carrying. Hernandez, after the initial shock, immediately followed in desperate pursuit. He caught up with Virgilio Alvarez and overcame him after a scuffle. Alvarez was subsequently charged with robbery and pleaded guilty. But the hold-upper who escaped is still at large and the stolen money he took with him has not been recovered. - the petitioner, invoking the foregoing facts, filed a request for relief from money accountability under Section 638 of the Revised Administrative Code.3 - however, the Commission on Audit, through then Chairman Francisco S. Tantuico, jr. denied the petitioner's request, observing inter alia: In the instant case, the loss of the P10,175.00 under the accountability of Mr. Hernandez can be attributed to his negligence because had he brought the cash proceeds of the checks (replenishment fund) to the Beach Park in Ternate immediately after encashment for safekeeping in his office, which is the normal procedure in the handling of public funds, the loss of said cash thru robbery could have been aborted. - In the petition at bar, Hernandez claims that the respondent COA acted with grave abuse of discretion in denying him relief and in holding him negligent for the loss of the stolen money. He avers he has done only what any reasonable man would have done and should not be held accountable for a fortuitous event over which he had no control. - On his decision to take the money home that afternoon instead of returning directly to Ternate, he says that the first course was more prudent as he saw it, if only because his home in Marilao was much nearer than his office in Ternate; that the likelihood of robbery during the time in question was stronger in Ternate than in Marilao; that what happened was a fortuitous

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theater was plunged into darkness and pandemonium ensued. Shocked and hurt, plaintiffs managed to crawl under the fallen ceiling. As soon as they were able to get out to the street they walked the nearby FEU Hospital where they were confined and treated for one (1) day. - The next day, they transferred to the UST hospital. Plaintiff Gloria Chatto was treated in said hospital from June 5 to June 19 and plaintiff Lina Delza Chatto from June 5 to 11. Per Medico Legal Certificate (Exh, "C") issued by Dr. Ernesto G. Brion, plaintiff Lina Delza Chatto suffered the following injuries: - Defendant tried to avoid liability by alleging that the collapse of the ceiling of its theater was done due to force majeure. It maintained that its theater did not suffer from any structural or construction defect. ISSUES 1. WON Jesus Lim Ongs investigation maybe given weight in the trial 2. WON the collapse was due to force majeure HELD 1. NO - there was no authoritative investigation conducted by impartial civil and structural engineers on the cause of the collapse of the theater's ceiling, Jesus Lim Ong is not an engineer, He is a graduate of architecture from the St. Louie University in Baguio City. It does not appear he has passed the government examination for architects. In fine, the ignorance of Mr. Ong about the cause of the collapse of the ceiling of their theater cannot be equated, as an act, of God. To sustain that proposition is to introduce sacrilege in our jurisprudence. 2. NO - Petitioner's claim that the collapse of the ceiling of the theater's balcony was due to force majeure is not even founded on facts because its own witness, Mr. Jesus Lim Ong, admitted that "he could not give any reason why the ceiling collapsed." Having interposed it as a defense, it had the burden to prove that the collapse was indeed caused by force majeure. It could not have collapsed without a cause. That Mr. Ong could not offer any explanation does not imply force majeure. Petitioner could have easily discovered the cause of the collapse if indeed it were due to force majeure. To Our mind, the real reason why Mr. Ong could not explain the cause or reason is that either he did not actually conduct the investigation or that he is, as the respondent Court impliedly held, incompetent. He is not an engineer, but an architect who had not even passed the government's examination. Verily, post-incident investigation cannot be considered as material to the present proceedings. What is significant is the finding of the trial court, affirmed by the respondent Court, that the collapse was due to construction defects. There was no evidence offered to overturn this finding. The building was constructed barely four (4) years prior to the accident in question. It was not shown that any of the causes denominates as force majeure obtained immediately before or at the time of the collapse of the ceiling. Such defects could have been easily discovered if only petitioner exercised due diligence and care in keeping and maintaining the premises. But as disclosed by the testimony of Mr. Ong, there was no adequate inspection of the premises before the date of the accident. His answers to the leading questions on inspection disclosed neither the exact dates of said. inspection nor the nature and extent of the same. That the structural designs and plans of the building were duly approved by the City Engineer and the building permits and certificate of occupancy were issued do not at all prove that there were no defects in the construction,

event that could not have reasonably been foreseen, especially on that busy highway. - then Solicitor-General argued that Hernandez was negligent in the safekeeping of the stolen funds. Later, however, his successor sided with the petitioner, agreeing that Hernandez had not committed any negligence or, assuming he was guilty of contributory negligence, had made up for it with his efforts to retrieve the money and his capture of one of the robbers, who was eventually convicted. - COA insists that the petitioner should not be relieved from his money accountability because it was his own negligence that led to the loss of the cash he had sought to take not to Ternate but to Marilao. Its contention is that the petitioner should not have encashed the checks as the hour was already late and he knew he could not return to Ternate before nightfall. The memo concludes that in deciding to take the money with him to Marilao after imprudently withdrawing it from the main office, the petitioner was assuming a risk from which he cannot now be excused after the loss of the money as a result of the robbery to which it was unreasonably exposed.

ISSUE WON petitioners acts are so tainted with negligence or recklessness as to justify the denial of the petitioner's request for relief from accountability for the stolen money HELD NO - This was undoubtedly a fortuitous event covered by the said provisions, something that could not have been reasonably foreseen although it could have happened, and did. For most of us, all we can rely on is a reasoned conjecture of what might happen, based on common sense and our own experiences, or our intuition, if you will, and without any mystic ability to peer into the future. So it was with the petitioner. - It is true that the petitioner miscalculated, but the Court feels he should not be blamed for that. The decision he made seemed logical at that time and was one that could be expected of a reasonable and prudent person. Disposition The petitioner is entitled to be relieved from accountability for the money forcibly taken from him. ACCORDINGLY, the petition is GRANTED.

GOTESCO INVESTMENT CORPORATION V CHATTO 210 SCRA 18 DAVIDE JR; June 16, 1992
NATURE Petition for Review FACTS - In the afternoon of June 4, 1982 Gloria E. Chatto, and her 15-year old daughter, Lina Delza E. Chatto went to see the movie "Mother Dear" at Superama I theater, owned by defendant Gotesco Investment Corporation. They bought balcony tickets but even then were unable to find seats considering the number of people patronizing the movie. Hardly ten (10) minutes after entering the theater, the ceiling of its balcony collapsed. The

Section 638. Credit for loss occurring in transit or due to casualty Notice to Auditor. When a loss of government funds or property occurs while the same is in transit or is caused by fire, theft, or other casualty, the officer accountable therefor or having custody thereof shall immediately notify the Auditor General, or the provincial auditor, according as a matter is within the original jurisdiction of the one or the other, and within thirty days or such longer period as the Auditor, or provincial auditor, may in the particular case allow, shall present his application for relief, with the available evidence in support thereof. An officer who fails to comply with this requirement shall not be relieved of liability or allowed credit for any such loss in the settlement of his accounts.
3

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especially as regards the ceiling, considering that no testimony was offered to prove that it was ever inspected at all. - It is settled that - The owner or proprietor of a place of public amusement impliedly warrants that the premises, appliances and amusement devices are safe for the purpose for which they are designed, the doctrine being subject to no other exception or qualification than that he does not contract against unknown defects not discoverable by ordinary or reasonable means. - This implied warranty has given rise to the rule that - Where a patron of a theater or other place of public amusement is injured, and the thing that caused the injury is wholly and exclusively under the control and management of the defendant, and the accident is such as in the ordinary course of events would not have happened if proper care had been exercised, its occurrence raises a presumption or permits of an inference of negligence on the part of the defendant. Disposition judgment is hereby rendered DENYING the instant petition with costs against petitioner.

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the same be withdrawn. In fact, pursuant to such demand, appellee Uy Bico had taken delivery of 907 cavans of rice before the burning of the warehouse. Nor can the appellant or its employees be charged with negligence. The storage of the goods in the Customs warehouse pending withdrawal thereof by the appellees was undoubtedly made with their knowledge and consent. Since the warehouse belonged to and was maintained by the government, it would be unfair to impute negligence to the appellant, the latter having no control whatsoever over the same. Disposition judgment appealed from is hereby set aside.

WON the above stipulation validly limits the liability of the shipowner in this case HELD YES Ratio The parties may stipulate anything in the contract for so long as the stipulation is not contrary to law, morals, public policy. The stipulation which merely iterates the principle of caso fortuito is for all intents and purposes valid. Reasoning - We sustain the validity of the above stipulation; there is nothing therein that is contrary to law, morals or public policy. - Appellees would contend that the above stipulation does not bind them because it was printed in fine letters on the back-of the bills of lading; and that they did not sign the same. This argument overlooks the pronouncement of this Court in Ong Yiu vs. Court of Appeals, promulgated June 29, 1979, 3 where the Court held that while it may be true that petitioner had not signed the plane ticket , he is nevertheless bound by the provisions thereof. 'Such provisions have been held to be a part of the contract of carriage, and valid and binding upon the passenger regardless of the latter's lack of knowledge or assent to the regulation'. It is what is known as a contract of 'adhesion', in regards which it has been said that contracts of adhesion wherein one party imposes a ready made form of contract on the other, as the plane ticket in the case at bar, are contracts not entirely prohibited. The one who adheres to the contract is in reality free to reject it entirely; if he adheres, he gives his consent." (Tolentino, Civil Code, Vol. IV, 1962 Ed., p. 462, citing Mr. Justice J.B.L. Reyes, Lawyer's Journal, Jan. 31, 1951, p. 49). - Besides, the agreement contained in the above quoted Clause 14 is a mere iteration of the basic principle of law written in Article 1 1 7 4 of the Civil Code4 Thus, where fortuitous event or force majeure is the immediate and proximate cause of the loss, the obligor is exempt from liability for nonperformance. The Partidas, the antecedent of Article 1174 of the Civil Code, defines 'caso fortuito' as 'an event that takes place by accident and could not have been foreseen. Examples of this are destruction of houses, unexpected fire, shipwreck, violence of robbers.' - In its dissertation of the phrase 'caso fortuito' the Enciclopedia Juridicada Espanola 5 says: "In a legal sense and, consequently, also in relation to contracts, a 'caso fortuito' presents the following essential characteristics: (1) the cause of the unforeseen and unexpected occurrence, or of the failure of the debtor to comply with his obligation, must be independent of the human will; (2) it must be impossible to foresee the event which constitutes the 'caso fortuito', or if it can be foreseen, it must be impossible to avoid; (3) the occurrence must be such as to render it impossible for the debtor to fulfill his obligation in a normal manner; and (4) the obligor must be free from any participation in the aggravation of the injury resulting to the creditor." In the case at bar, the burning of the customs warehouse was an extraordinary event which happened independently of the will of the appellant. The latter could not have foreseen the event. - There is nothing in the record to show that appellant carrier ,incurred in delay in the performance of its obligation. It appears that appellant had not only notified appellees of the arrival of their shipment, but had demanded that

SEPARATE OPINION AQUINO [concur]


- I concur. Under article 1738 of the Civil Code "the extraordinary liability of the common carrier continues to be operative even during the time the goods are stored in the warehouse of the carrier at the place of destination, until the consignee has been advised of the arrival of the goods and has had reasonable opportunity thereafter to remove them or otherwise dispose of them". - From the time the goods in question were deposited in the Bureau of Customs' warehouse in the morning of their arrival up to two o' clock in the afternoon of the same day, when the warehouse was burned, Amparo C. Servando and Clara Uy Bico, the consignees, had reasonable opportunity to remove the goods. Clara had removed more than one-half of the rice consigned to her. Moreover, the shipping company had no more control and responsibility over the goods after they were deposited in the customs warehouse by the arrastre and stevedoring operator. No amount of extraordinary diligence on the part of the carrier could have prevented the loss of the goods by fire which was of accidental origin.

SERVANDO V PHILIPPINE STEAM NAVIGATION CO 117 SCRA 832 ESCOLIN; 1982


NATURE This appeal, originally brought to the Court of Appeals, seeks to set aside the decision of the Court of First Instance of Negros Occidental in Civil Cases Nos. 7354 and 7428, declaring appellant Philippine Steam Navigation liable for damages for the loss of the appellees' cargoes as a result of a fire which gutted the Bureau of Customs' warehouse in Pulupandan, Negros Occidental. FACTS - On November 6, 1963, appellees Clara Uy Bico and Amparo Servando loaded on board the appellant's vessel for carriage from Manila to Pulupandan, Negros Occidental several cargoes (cavans of rice, colored papers, toys etc) as evidenced by the corresponding bills of lading issued by the appellant. Upon arrival of the vessel at Pulupandan, in the morning of November 18, 1963, the cargoes were discharged, complete and in good order, unto the warehouse of the Bureau of Customs. At about 2:00 in the afternoon of the same day, said warehouse was razed by a fire of unknown origin, destroying appellees' cargoes. Before the fire, however, appellee Uy Bico was able to take delivery of 907 cavans of rice Appellees' claims for the value of said goods were rejected by the appellant. - On the bases of the foregoing facts, the lower court rendered a decision, ordering Philippine Steam to pay for damages. The court a quo held that the delivery of the shipment in question to the warehouse of the Bureau of Customs is not the delivery contemplated by Article 1736; and since the burning of the warehouse occurred before actual or constructive delivery of the goods to the appellees, the loss is chargeable against the appellant. Philippine Steam on the other hand relies on the following: Clause 14. Carrier shall not be responsible for loss or damage to shipments billed 'owner's risk' unless such loss or damage is due to negligence of carrier. Nor shall carrier be responsible for loss or damage caused by force majeure, dangers or accidents of the sea or other waters; war; public enemies; . . . fire . ... ISSUE

NATIONAL POWER CORP V CA (RAYO ET AL) DAVIDE JR; May 21, 1993
NATURE Petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Revised Rules of Court FACTS - When the water level in the Angat dam went beyond the allowable limit at the height of typhoon Kading NPC opened three of the dams spillways to release the excess water in the dam. This however caused the inundation of the banks of the Angat river which caused persons and animals to drown and properties to be washed away. - The flooding was purportedly caused by the negligent release by the defendants of water through the spillways of the Angst Dam (Hydroelectric Plant). Plaintiffs claim: - NPC operated and maintained a multi-purpose hydroelectric plant in the Angat River - despite the defendants' knowledge of the impending entry of typhoon "Kading," they failed to exercise due diligence in monitoring the water level at the dam - when the said water level went beyond the maximum allowable limit at the height of the typhoon, the defendants suddenly, negligently and recklessly opened three (3) of the dam's spillways, thereby releasing a large amount of

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.
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water which inundated the banks of the Angat River causing the death of members of the household of the plaintiffs, together with their animals Respondents comments: - NPC exercised due care, diligence and prudence in the operation and maintenance of the hydroelectric plant - NPC exercised the diligence of a good father in the selection of its employees - written notices were sent to the different municipalities of Bulacan warning the residents therein about the impending release of a large volume of water with the onset of typhoon "Kading" and advising them to take the necessary Precautions - the water released during the typhoon was needed to prevent the collapse of the dam and avoid greater damage to people and property - in spite of the precautions undertaken and the diligence exercised, they could still not contain or control the flood that resulted - the damages incurred by the private respondents were caused by a fortuitous event or force majeure and are in the nature and character of damnum absque injuria. ISSUES 1. WON NPC was guilty of negligence 2. WON (applying the ruling of NAkpil & Sons v. CA) NPC is liable given that the inundation was caused by force majeure HELD 1. YES - A similar case entitled National Power Corporation, et al. vs, Court of Appeals, et al.," involving the very same incident subject of the instant petition. The court there declared that the proximate cause of the loss and damage sustained by the plaintiffs therein--who were similarly situated as the private respondents herein-was the negligence of the petitioners, - on the basis of its meticulous analysis and evaluation of the evidence a dduced by the parties in the cases subject of CA-G.R. CV Nos. 27290-93, public respondent found as conclusively established that indeed, the petitioners were guilty of "patent gross and evident lack of foresight, imprudence and negligence in the management and operation of Angat Dam," and that "the extent of the opening of the spillways, and the magnitude of the water released, are all but products of defendants-appellees headlessness, slovenliness, and carelessness."and that the 24 October 1978 'early warning notice" supposedly sent to the affected municipalities, the same notice involved in the case at bar, was insufficient. 2. YES - given that NPC is guilty of negligence. Juan F. Nakipil & Sons vs. Court of Appeals is still good law as far as the concurrent liability of an obligor in the case of force majeure is concerned. - In the Nakpil case it was held that "To exempt the obligor from liability under Article 1174 of the Civil Code, for a breach of an obligation due to an 'act of God,' the following must concur: (a) the cause of the breach of the obligation must be independent of the will of the debtor, (b) the event must be either unforeseeable or unavoidable; (c) the event must be such as to render it impossible for the debtor to fulfill his obligation in a normal manner; and (d) the debtor must be free from any participation in, or aggravation of the injury to the creditor. Thus, if upon the happening of a fortuitous event or an act of God, there concurs a corresponding fraud, negligence, delay or violation or contravention in any manner of the tenor of the obligation as provided for in Article 1170 of the Civil Code, which results in loss or damage, the obligor cannot escape liability.

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damages, P300,000.00, as exemplary damages and P100,000.00, for and as attorneys fees; plus costs. - In its Answer, petitioner averred that subject school building had withstood several devastating typhoons and other calamities in the past, without its roofing or any portion thereof giving way; that it has not been remiss in its responsibility to see to it that said school building, which houses school children, faculty members, and employees, is in tip-top condition; and furthermore, typhoon Saling was an act of God and therefore beyond human control such that petitioner cannot be answerable for the damages wrought thereby, absent any negligence on its part. - The Trial Court and the Court of Appeals gave credence to the ocular inspection made by the city engineer. Thus, this appeal. ISSUES WON the damage on the roof of the building of private respondents resulting from the impact of the falling portions of the school buildings roof ripped off by the strong winds of typhoon Saling, was, within legal contemplation, due to fortuitous event HELD YES - Petitioner cannot be held liable for the damages suffered by the private respondents. This conclusion finds support in Article 1174 of the Civil Code, which provides: Art 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. - The antecedent of fortuitous event or caso fortuito is found in the Partidas which defines it as an event which takes place by accident and could not have been foreseen.iii[9] Escriche elaborates it as an unexpected event or act of God which could neither be foreseen nor resisted. Civilist Arturo M. Tolentino adds that [f]ortuitous events may be produced by two general causes: (1) by nature, such as earthquakes, storms, floods, epidemics, fires, etc. and (2) by the act of man, such as an armed invasion, attack by bandits, governmental prohibitions, robbery, etc.iv - In order that a fortuitous event may exempt a person from liability, it is necessary that he be free from any previous negligence or misconduct by reason of which the loss may have been occasioned.. An act of God cannot be invoked for the protection of a person who has been guilty of gross negligence in not trying to forestall its possible adverse consequences. When a persons negligence concurs with an act of God in producing damage or injury to another, such person is not exempt from liability by showing that the immediate or proximate cause of the damage or injury was a fortuitous event. When the effect is found to be partly the result of the participation of man whether it be from active intervention, or neglect, or failure to act the whole occurrence is hereby humanized, and removed from the rules applicable to acts of God. - After a thorough study and evaluation of the evidence on record, this Court believes otherwise, notwithstanding the general rule that factual findings by the trial court, especially when affirmed by the appellate court, are binding and conclusive upon this Court. After a careful scrutiny of the records and the pleadings submitted by the parties, we find exception to this rule and hold that the lower courts misappreciated the evidence proffered. - There is no question that a typhoon or storm is a fortuitous event, a natural occurrence which may be foreseen but is unavoidable despite any amount of

- The principle embodied in the act of God doctrine strictly requires that the act must be one occasioned exclusively by the violence of nature and all human agencies are, to be excluded from creating or entering into the cause of the mischief. When the effect, the cause of which is to be considered, is found to be in part the result of the participation of man whether it be from active intervention or neglect, or failure to act, the whole occurrence is thereby humanized, as it were, and removed from the rules applicable to the acts of God. (1 Corpus Juris, pp. 1174-1175). Disposition Petition dismissed.

SOUTHEASTERN COLLEGE V CA PURISIMA; July 10, 1998


NATURE Petition for review seeking to set aside the Decision promulgated on July 31, 1996, and Resolution dated September 12, 1996 of the Court of Appeals in Juanita de Jesus vda. de Dimaano, et al. vs. Southeastern College, Inc., which reduced the moral damages awarded below from P1,000,000.00 to P200,000.00. The Resolution under attack denied petitioners motion for reconsideration. FACTS - Private respondents are owners of a house at 326 College Road, Pasay City, while petitioner owns a four-storey school building along the same College Road. On October 11, 1989, at about 6:30 in the morning, a powerful typhoon Saling hit Metro Manila. Buffeted by very strong winds, the roof of petitioners building was partly ripped off and blown away, landing on and destroying portions of the roofing of private respondents house. After the typhoon had passed, an ocular inspection of the destroyed buildings was conducted by a team of engineers headed by the city building official, Engr. Jesus L. Reyna. Pertinent aspects of the latters Reporti[5] dated October 18, 1989 stated, as follows: 5. One of the factors that may have led to this calamitous event is the formation of the buildings in the area and the general direction of the wind. Situated in the peripheral lot is an almost U-shaped formation of 4-storey building. Thus, with the strong winds having a westerly direction, the general formation of the buildings becomes a big funnel-like structure, the one situated along College Road, receiving the heaviest impact of the strong winds. Hence, there are portions of the roofing, those located on both ends of the building, which remained intact after the storm. 6. Another factor and perhaps the most likely reason for the dislodging of the roofings structural trusses is the improper anchorage of the said trusses to the roof beams. The 1/2 diameter steel bars embedded on the concrete roof beams which serve as truss anchorage are not bolted nor nailed to the trusses. Still, there are other steel bars which were not even bent to the trusses, thus, those trusses are not anchored at all to the roof beams. - It then recommended that to avoid any further loss and damage to lives, limbs and property of persons living in the vicinity, the fourth floor of subject school building be declared as a structural hazard. - In their Complaintii[6] before the Regional Trial Court of Pasay City, Branch 117, for damages based on culpa aquiliana, private respondents alleged that the damage to their house rendered the same uninhabitable, forcing them to stay temporarily in others houses. And so they sought to recover from petitioner P117,116.00, as actual damages, P1,000,000.00, as moral

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foresight, diligence or care. In order to be exempt from liability arising from any adverse consequence engendered thereby, there should have been no human participation amounting to a negligent act. In other words, the person seeking exoneration from liability must not be guilty of negligence. Negligence, as commonly understood, is conduct which naturally or reasonably creates undue risk or harm to others. It may be the failure to observe that degree of care, precaution, and vigilance which the circumstances justly demand,v[17] or the omission to do something which a prudent and reasonable man, guided by considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs, would do. From these premises, we proceed to determine whether petitioner was negligent, such that if it were not, the damage caused to private respondents house could have been avoided? - At the outset, it bears emphasizing that a person claiming damages for the negligence of another has the burden of proving the existence of fault or negligence causative of his injury or loss. The facts constitutive of negligence must be affirmatively established by competent evidence,vi[19] not merely by presumptions and conclusions without basis in fact. Private respondents, in establishing the culpability of petitioner, merely relied on the aforementioned report submitted by a team which made an ocular inspection of petitioners school building after the typhoon. As the term imparts, an ocular inspection is one by means of actual sight or viewing.vii[20] What is visual to the eye though, is not always reflective of the real cause behind. For instance, one who hears a gunshot and then sees a wounded person, cannot always definitely conclude that a third person shot the victim. It could have been self-inflicted or caused accidentally by a stray bullet. The relationship of cause and effect must be clearly shown. - In the present case, other than the said ocular inspection, no investigation was conducted to determine the real cause of the partial unroofing of petitioners school building. Private respondents did not even show that the plans, specifications and design of said school building were deficient and defective. Neither did they prove any substantial deviation from the approved plans and specifications. Nor did they conclusively establish that the construction of such building was basically flawed. - Moreover, the city building official, who has been in the city government service since 1974, admitted in open court that no complaint regarding any defect on the same structure has ever been lodged before his office prior to the institution of the case at bench. It is a matter of judicial notice that typhoons are common occurrences in this country. If subject school buildings roofing was not firmly anchored to its trusses, obviously, it could not have withstood long years and several typhoons even stronger than Saling. - In light of the foregoing, we find no clear and convincing evidence to sustain the judgment of the appellate court. We thus hold that petitioner has not been shown negligent or at fault regarding the construction and maintenance of its school building in question and that typhoon Saling was the proximate cause of the damage suffered by private respondents house.

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- In a decision of the Spanish SC, cited by Manresa, the death of an employee who was bitten by a feline which his master had asked him to take to his establishment was by said tribunal declared to be a veritable accident of labor which should come under the labor laws rather than under article 1905, CC. The present action, however, is not brought under labor laws in effect, but under Art.1905. Disposition Judgment AFFIRMED.

- This is an action for damages arising from injury caused by an animal. Loreto Afialda was the caretaker of the carabaos of spouses Hisole. While tending the animals, he was gored by one of them and later died as consequence of his injuries. The action was filed by the sister of Loreto, and contended that the mishap was due neither to Loretos own fault nor to force majeure. - She uses Art.1905, CC (now Art.21835) as ground for the liability: The possessor of an animal, or the one who uses the same, is liable for any damages it may cause, even if such animal should escape from him or stray away. This liability shall cease only in case the damage should arise from force majeure or from the fault of the person who may have suffered it. - Spouses moved for dismissal for lack of cause of action, which the CFI granted. Hence, the appeal. ISSUE WON the owner of the animal is liable when the damage is caused to its caretaker (as opposed to a stranger) HELD 1. NO Ratio It was the caretaker's business to try to prevent the animal from causing injury or damage to anyone, including himself. And being injured by the animal under those circumstances was one of the risks of the occupation which he had voluntarily assumed and for which he must take the consequences. Reasoning - The lower court took the view that under the abovequoted provision of the CC, the owner of an animal is answerable only for damages caused to a stranger, and that for damage caused to the caretaker of the animal the owner would be liable of fault under article 1902 only if he had been negligent or at the same code. - Claiming that the lower court was in error, plaintiff contends that art. 1905 does not distinguish between damage caused to a stranger and damage caused to the caretaker and makes the owner liable whether or not he has been negligent or at fault. - The distinction (between stranger and caretaker) is important. For the statute names the possessor or user of the animal as the person liable for any damages it may cause and this for the obvious reason that the possessor or user has the custody and control of the animal and is therefore the one in a position to prevent it from causing damage. - In the present case, the animal was in the custody and under the control of the caretaker, who was paid for his work as such. Obviously, it was the caretaker's business to try to prevent the animal from causing injury or damage to anyone, including himself. And being injured by the animal under those circumstances was one of the risks of the occupation which he had voluntarily assumed and for which he must take the consequences. - On the other hand, if action is to be based on Art. 1902, it is essential that there be fault or negligence on the part of the defendants as owners of the animal that caused the damage. But the complaint contains no allegation on those points.

ILOCOS NORTE ELECTRIC COMPANY V CA (LUIS ET AL) 179 SCRA 5 PARAS; November 6, 1989
FACTS - 5- 6AM June 29, 1967 - strong typhoon "Gening" in Ilocos Norte brought floods and heavy rain. Isabel Lao Juan, (Nana Belen) went to her store, Five Sisters Emporium, to look after the merchandise to see if they were damaged. Wading in waist-deep flood, Juan suddenly screamed "Ay" and quickly sank into the water. Her companions, two girls (sales girlls) attempted to help, but were afraid because they saw an electric wire dangling from a post and moving in snake-like fashion in the water. Yabes, the son-in law, upon hearing the electrocution of his mother-in-law, passed by the City Hall of Laoag to request the police to ask Ilocos Norte Electric Company or INELCO to cut off the electric current. The body was recovered about two meters from an electric post. - 4AM June 29, 1967- Engineer Juan, Power Plant Engineer of NPC at the Laoag Diesel-Electric Plant, noticed certain fluctuations in their electric meter which indicated such abnormalities as grounded or short-circuited lines. - 6-6:30AM June 29, 1967- he set out of the Laoag NPC Compound on an inspection and saw grounded and disconnected lines. Electric lines were hanging from the posts to the ground. When he went to INELCO office, he could not see any INELCO lineman. - Engr. Juan attempted to resuscitate Nana Belen but his efforts proved futile. Rigor mortis was setting in. On the left palm of the deceased, there was a hollow wound. In the afternoon, the dangling wire was no longer there. - Dr. Castro examined the body and noted that the skin was grayish or cyanotic, which indicated death by electrocution. On the left palm, the doctor found an "electrically charged wound" or a first degree burn. About the base of the thumb on the left hand was a burned wound. The cause of' death was ,'circulatory shock electrocution" - In defense and exculpation, INELCO presented the testimonies of its officers and employees, which sought to prove that (1) on and even before June 29, 1967 the electric service system of the INELCO in the whole franchise area did not suffer from any defect that might constitute a hazard to life and property. (2) The service lines and devices had been newly-installed prior to the date in question. (3) Also, safety devices were installed to prevent and avoid injuries to persons and damage to property in case of natural calamities such as floods, typhoons, fire and others. (4) 12 linesmen are charged with the duty of making a round-the-clock check-up of the areas respectively assigned to them. (5) They also presented own medical expert and said that cyanosis could not have been the noted 3 hours after the death because it is only manifest in live persons. (6) Lastly, the deceased could have died simply either by drowning or by electrocution due to negligence attributable only to herself and not to INELCO because of the installation of a burglar deterrent by connecting a wire from the main house to the iron gate and fence of steel matting, thus, charging the latter with electric current

AFIALDA V HISOLE 85 Phil 67 REYES; November 29, 1949


NATURE Appeal from judgment of CFI Iloilo FACTS

Art. 2183. The possessor of an animal or whoever may make use of the same is responsible for the damage which it may cause, although it may escape or be lost. This responsibility shall cease only in case the damage should come from force majeure or from the fault of the person who has suffered damage.
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whenever the switch is on. The switch must have been left on, hence, causing the deceased's electrocution when she tried to open her gate that early morning of June 29, 1967 - CFI: awarded P25,000 moral damages; P45,000 attys fees - CA: P30,229.45 in actual damages (i.e., P12,000 for the victim's death and P18,229.45 for funeral expenses); P50,000 in compensatory damages, computed in accordance with the formula set in the Villa-Rey Transit case (31 SCRA 511) with the base of P15,000 as average annual income of the deceased; P10,000 in exemplary damages; P3,000 attorney's fees ISSUE WON the legal principle of "assumption of risk" bars private respondents from collecting damages from INELCO HELD NO Ratio The maxim "volenti non fit injuria" relied upon by petitioner finds no application in the case at bar. It is imperative to note the surrounding circumstances which impelled the deceased to leave the comforts of a roof and brave the subsiding typhoon. As testified by the salesgirls, the deceased went to the Five Star Emporium "to see to it that the goods were not flooded." As such, shall We punish her for exercising her right to protect her property from the floods by imputing upon her the unfavorable presumption that she assumed the risk of personal injury? Definitely not. For it has been held that a person is excused from the force of the rule, that when he voluntarily assents to a known danger he must abide by the consequences, if an emergency is found to exist or if the life or property of another is in peril, or when he seeks to rescue his endangered property. Clearly, an emergency was at hand as the deceased's property, a source of her livelihood, was faced with an impending loss. Furthermore, the deceased, at the time the fatal incident occurred, was at a place where she had a right to be without regard to INELCOs consent as she was on her way to protect her merchandise. Hence, private respondents, as heirs, may not be barred from recovering damages as a result of the death caused by INELCOs negligence Reasoning - INELCO can be exonerated from liability since typhoons and floods are fortuitous events. While it is true that typhoons and floods are considered Acts of God for which no person may be held responsible, it was not said eventuality which directly caused the victim's death. It was through the intervention of petitioner's negligence that death took place. - In times of calamities such as the one which occurred in Laoag City on the night of June 28 until the early hours of June 29, 1967, extraordinary diligence requires a supplier of electricity to be in constant vigil to prevent or avoid any probable incident that might imperil life or limb. The evidence does not show that defendant did that. On the contrary, evidence discloses that there were no men (linemen or otherwise) policing the area, nor even manning its office. - INELCO was negligent in seeing that no harm is done to the general public"... considering that electricity is an agency, subtle and deadly, the measure of care required of electric companies must be commensurate with or proportionate to the danger. The duty of exercising this high degree of diligence and care extends to every place where persons have a right to be" The negligence of petitioner having been shown, it may not now absolve itself from liability by arguing that the victim's death was solely due to a fortuitous event. "When an act of God combines or concurs with the negligence of the

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- It was shown in this case that Pesi Cola did not merely satisfy itself that Bonifacio possessed a drivers license. A background check was done and he was required to submit various clearances, previous experience, and medical records. He was also made to undergo both theoretical and practical driving tests prior to being hired as driver. In terms of the aspect of supervision, the petitioners raised no questions. Given this, the proof called for under Article 2180 to show diligence of a good father of a family has been met. Disposition Decision of the CA is affirmed.

defendant to produce an injury, the defendant is liable if the injury would not have resulted but for his own negligent conduct or omission" Disposition CA decision, except for the slight modification that actual damages be increased to P48,229.45, is AFFIRMED.

RAMOS V PEPSI COLA 19 SCRA 289 1967


NATURE Appeal from a CA decision FACTS - The facts with regard the accident that Andres Bonifacio caused is not in the case. The Court limited its ruling on the decision of the CA to absolve defendant Pepsi Cola from liability under Article 2180 6 of the Civil Code. There was, however, a finding that Bonifacio was in fact negligent. - The petiton for appeal questioned the testimony of one Anasco with regard the process and procedures followed by Pepsi in the hiring and supervision of its drivers. The SC ruled that the issue brought before it with regard the credibility of Anasco is one of fact and not of law. It went on to stay that the CA is a better judge of the facts. ISSUE WON Pepsi Cola is liable under the doctrine of vicarious liability HELD NO - The Court ruled that based on the evidence and testimonies presented during the trial, Pepsi Cola exercised the due diligence of a good father in the hiring and supervision of its drivers. This being the case, the Company is relieved of any responsibility from the accident. Reasoning - In its ruling, the court citing its ruling on Bahia as follows: From this article (2180) two things are apparent: (1) that when an injury is caused by the negligence of a servant or employee there instantly arise a presumption of law that there was negligence on the part of the employer or master either n the selection of the servant or employee, or in the supervision over him after the selection, or both, and (2) that they presumption is juris tantum ( so much or so little of law) and not juris et de jure (of law and from law), and consequently may be rebutted . - It follows necessarily that if the employer shows to the satisfaction of the court that in the selection and supervision he has exercised the care and diligence of a good father of the family, the presumption is overcome and he is relieved from liability.
Art. 2180. The obligation imposed by Article 2176 is demandable not only for ones 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 industry. The responsibility treated of this article shall cease when the persons herein mentioned prove that they observed all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage.
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METRO MANILA TRANSIT CORP V CA (CUSTODIA) 223 SCRA 521 REGALADO; June 21, 1993
FACTS - At about six o'clock in the morning of August 28, 1979, plaintiff-appellant Nenita Custodio boarded as a paying passenger a public utility jeepney, then driven by defendant Agudo Calebag and owned by his co-defendant Victorino Lamayo, bound for her work, where she then worked as a machine operator earning P16.25 a day. - While the jeepney was travelling at a fast clip along DBP Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig, another fast moving vehicle, a Metro Manila Transit Corp. (MMTC) bus driven by defendant Godofredo C. Leonardo was negotiating Honeydew Road, Bicutan, Taguig, Metro Manila bound for its terminal at Bicutan. - As both vehicles approached the intersection of DBP Avenue and Honeydew Road they failed to slow down and slacken their speed; neither did they blow their horns to warn approaching vehicles. As a consequence, a collision between them occurred, the passenger jeepney ramming the left side portion of the MMTC bus. The collision impact caused plaintiff-appellant Nenita Custodio to hit the front windshield of the passenger jeepney and (she) was thrown out therefrom, falling onto the pavement unconscious with serious physical injuries. - She was brought to the Medical City Hospital where she regained consciousness only after one (1) week. Thereat, she was confined for twentyfour (24) days, and as a consequence, she was unable to work for three and one half months (31/2). - A complaint for damages was filed by herein private respondent, who being then a minor was assisted by her parents, against all of therein named defendants following their refusal to pay the expenses incurred by the former as a result of the collision. - Said defendants denied all the material allegations in the complaint and pointed an accusing finger at each other as being the party at fault. Further, herein petitioner MMTC, a government-owned corporation and one of the defendants in the court a quo, along with its driver, Godofredo Leonardo, contrarily averred in its answer with cross-claim and counterclaim that the MMTC bus was driven in a prudent and careful manner by driver Leonardo and that it was the passenger jeepney which was driven recklessly considering that it hit the left middle portion of the MMTC bus, and that it was defendant Lamayo, the owner of the jeepney and employer of driver Calebag, who failed to exercise due diligence in the selection and supervision of employees and should thus be held solidarily liable for damages caused to the MMTC bus through the fault and negligence of its employees. - Defendant Victorino Lamayo alleged that the damages suffered by therein plaintiff should be borne by defendants MMTC and its driver, Godofredo Leonardo, because the latter's negligence was the sole and proximate cause

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of the accident and that MMTC failed to exercise due diligence in the selection and supervision of its employees. ISSUES 1. WON the oral testimonies of witnesses even without the presentation documentary evidence, prove that driver Leonardo had complied with all the hiring and clearance requirements and had undergone all trainings, tests and examinations preparatory to actual employment, and that said positive testimonies spell out the rigid procedure for screening of job applicants and the supervision of its employees in the field 2. WON petitioner exercised due diligence in the selection and supervision of its employees HELD 1. While there is no rule which requires that testimonial evidence, to hold sway, must be corroborated by documentary evidence, or even subject evidence for that matter, inasmuch as the witnesses' testimonies dwelt on mere generalities, we cannot consider the same as sufficiently persuasive proof that there was observance of due diligence in the selection and supervision of employees. - Petitioner's attempt to prove its diligentissimi patris familias in the selection and supervision of employees through oral evidence must fail as it was unable to buttress the same with any other evidence, object or documentary, which might obviate the apparent biased nature of the testimony. - It is procedurally required for each party in a case to prove his own affirmative assertion by the degree of evidence required by law. The party, whether plaintiff or defendant, who asserts the affirmative of the issue has the burden of presenting at the trial such amount of evidence required by law to obtain a favorable judgment. It is entirely within each of the parties discretion, consonant with the theory of the case it or he seeks to advance and subject to such procedural strategy followed thereby, to present all available evidence at its or his disposal in the manner which may be deemed necessary and beneficial to prove its or his position, provided only that the same shall measure up to the quantum of evidence required by law. In making proof in its or his case, it is paramount that the best and most complete evidence be formally entered. - Whether or not the diligence of a good father of a family has been observed by petitioner is a matter of proof which under the circumstances in the case at bar has not been clearly established. It is not felt by the Court that there is enough evidence on record as would overturn the presumption of negligence, and for failure to submit all evidence within its control, assuming the putative existence thereof, petitioner MMTC must suffer the consequences of its own inaction and indifference. 2. In any event, we do not find the evidence presented by petitioner sufficiently convincing to prove the diligence of a good father of a family, which for an employer doctrinally translates into its observance of due diligence in the selection and supervision of its employees but which mandate, to use an oft-quoted phrase, is more often honored in the breach than in the observance. - Petitioner attempted to essay in detail the company's procedure for screening job applicants and supervising its employees in the field, through the testimonies of Milagros Garbo, as its training officer, and Christian Bautista, as its transport supervisor, both of whom naturally and expectedly testified for MMTC.

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KRAMER VS CA (TRANS-ASIA SHIPPING LINES) 178 SCRA 289 GANCAYCO; October 13, 1989
FACTS - The F/B Marjolea, a fishing boat owned by Ernesto Kramer, Jr. and Marta Kramer, was navigating its way from Marinduque to Manila. Somewhere near Maricabon Island and Cape Santiago, the boat figured in a collision with an inter-island vessel, the M/V Asia Philippines owned byTrans-Asia Shipping Lines, Inc. As a consequence of the collision, the F/B Marjolea sank, taking with it its fish catch. - The Board concluded that the loss of the F/B Marjolea and its fish catch was due to the negligence of the employees of Trans-Asia. The Kramers instituted a Complaint for damages against the private respondent before Branch 117 of the Regional Trial Court in Pasay City. Trans-Asia filed a motion seeking the dismissal of the Complaint on the ground of prescription. He argued that under Article 1146 of the Civil Code, the prescriptive period for instituting a Complaint for damages arising from a quasi-delict like a maritime collision is four years. He maintained that the petitioners should have filed their Complaint within four years from the date when their cause of action accrued, i.e., from April 8, 1976 when the maritime collision took place, and that accordingly, the Complaint filed on May 30, 1985 was instituted beyond the four-year prescriptive period. Petitioners claim: - that maritime collisions have peculiarities and characteristics which only persons with special skill, training and experience like the members of the Board of Marine Inquiry can properly analyze and resolve - that the running of the prescriptive period was tolled by the filing of the marine protest and that their cause of action accrued only on April 29, 1982, the date when the Decision ascertaining the negligence of the crew of the M/V Asia Philippines had become final, and that the four-year prescriptive period under Article 1146 of the Civil Code should be computed from the said date. ISSUE WON a Complaint for damages instituted by the petitioners against the private respondent arising from a marine collision is barred by presciption HELD YES - Under A1146 CC, an action based upon a quasi-delict must be instituted within four (4) years. The prescriptive period begins from the day the quasidelict is committed. In Paulan vs. Sarabia, this Court ruled that in an action for damages arising from the collision of two (2) trucks, the action being based on a quasi-delict, the four (4) year prescriptive period must be counted from the day of the collision. - In Espanol vs. Chairman, Philippine Veterans Administration, this Court held: The right of action accrues when there exists a cause of action, which consists of 3 elements, namely: a) a right in favor of the plaintiff by whatever means and under whatever law it arises or is created; b) an obligation on the part of defendant to respect such right; and c) an act or omission on the part of such defendant violative of the right of the plaintiff ... It is only when the last element occurs or takes place that it can be said in law that a cause of action has arisen. From the foregoing ruling, it is clear that the prescriptive period must be counted when the last element occurs or takes place, that is, the

- Their statements strike us as both presumptuous and in the nature of petitio principii, couched in generalities and shorn of any supporting evidence to boost their verity. - The case at bar is clearly within the coverage of Article 2176 and 2177, in relation to Article 2180, of the Civil Code provisions on quasi-delicts as all the elements thereof are present, to wit: (1) damages suffered by the plaintiff, (2) fault or negligence of the defendant or some other person for whose act he must respond, and (3) the connection of cause and effect between fault or negligence of the defendant and the damages incurred by plaintiff. It is to be noted that petitioner was originally sued as employer of driver Leonardo under Article 2180. - Article 2180 applicable only where there is an employer-employee relationship, although it is not necessary that the employer be engaged in business or industry. Employer is liable for torts committed by his employees within the scope of their assigned tasks. But, it is necessary first to establish the employment relationship. Once this is done, the plaintiff must show, to hold the employer liable, that the employee was acting within the scope of his assigned task when the tort complained of was committed. It is only then that the defendant, as employer, may find it necessary to interpose the defense of due diligence in the selection and supervision of employees. The diligence of a good father of a family required to be observed by employers to prevent damages under Article 2180 refers to due diligence in the selection and supervision of employees in order to protect the public. - With the allegation and subsequent proof of negligence against the defendant driver and of an employer-employee relation between him and his co-defendant MMTC in this instance, the case in undoubtedly based on a quasi-delict under Article 2180. When the employee causes damage due to his own negligence while performing his own duties, there arises the juris tantum presumption that the employer is negligent, rebuttable only by proof of observance of the diligence of a good father of a family. For failure to rebut such legal presumption of negligence in the selection and supervision of employees, the employer is likewise responsible for damages, the basis of the liability being the relationship of pater familias or on the employer's own negligence. - Due diligence in the supervision of employees includes the formulation of suitable rules and regulations for the guidance of employees and the issuance of proper instructions intended for the protection of the public and persons with whom the employer has relations through his or its employees and the imposition of necessary disciplinary measures upon employees in case of breach or as may be warranted to ensure the performance of acts indispensable to the business of and beneficial to their employer. - In order that the defense of due diligence in the selection and supervision of employees may be deemed sufficient and plausible, it is not enough to emptily invoke the existence of said company guidelines and policies on hiring and supervision. As the negligence of the employee gives rise to the presumption of negligence on the part of the employer, the latter has the burden of proving that it has been diligent not only in the selection of employees but also in the actual supervision of their work. - Finally, we believe that respondent court acted in the exercise of sound discretion when it affirmed the trial court's award, without requiring the payment of interest thereon as an item of damages just because of delay in the determination thereof, especially since private respondent did not specifically pray therefor in her complaint. Article 2211 of the Civil Code provides that in quasi-delicts, interest as a part of the damages may be awarded in the discretion of the court, and not as a matter of right.

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time of the commission of an act or omission violative of the right of the plaintiff, which is the time when the cause of action arises. It is therefore clear that in this action for damages arising from the collision of 2 vessels the 4 year prescriptive period must be counted from the day of the collision. The aggrieved party need not wait for a determination by an administrative body like a Board of Marine Inquiry, that the collision was caused by the fault or negligence of the other party before he can file an action for damages. Immediately after the collision the aggrieved party can seek relief from the courts by alleging such negligence or fault of the owners, agents or personnel of the other vessel. Thus, the respondent court correctly found that the action of petitioner has prescribed. The collision occurred on April 8, 1976. The complaint for damages was filed in court only on May 30, 1 985, was beyond the 4 year prescriptive period. Disposition petition is dismissed.

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defendant may assert any defense which the third-party plaintiff has, or may have against plaintiffs claim. (Capayas v CFI Albay) The claim of third-party plaintiff, private respondent herein, can be accommodated under tests (a) and (b) abovementioned. 2. YES - The action for damages instituted by private respondent arising from the quasidelict or alleged "tortious interference" should be filed within four 4 years from the day the cause of action accrued. - It is from the date of the act or omission violative of the right of a party when the cause of action arises and it is from this date that the prescriptive period must be reckoned. (Espaol vs. Chairman, Philippine Veterans Admistration) - While the third party complaint in this case may be admitted as above discussed, since the cause of action accrued on March 25, 1980 when the Monetary Board ordered the GENBANK to desist from doing business in the Philippines while the third party complaint was filed only on June 17, 1987, consequently, the action has prescribed. The third party complaint should not be admitted. Disposition petition is GRANTED. The decision of CA denying the motion for reconsideration filed by petitioner are hereby reversed and set aside and declared null and void, and another judgment is hereby rendered sustaining the orders of the RTC denying the admission of the third party complaint

ALLIED BANKING V CA (YUJUICO) 178 SCRA 526 GANCAYCO; October 13, 1989
NATURE Petition seeking the reversal of the decision of CA in "Joselito Z. Yujuico vs. Hon. Domingo D. Panis, RTC Judge of Manila and Allied Banking Corp.,"1 and the resolution denying petitioner's motion for reconsideration of the said decision. FACTS - Mar 25, 1977 - Respondent Yujuico, a ranking officer in General Bank and Trust Company (GENBANK) and a member of the family owning control of the said bank, obtained a loan from the said institution in the amount of 500K. Private respondent issued a promissory note in favor of GENBANK. - March 25, 1977 the Monetary Board of the Central Bank issued a resolution forbidding GENBANK from doing business in the Phil. It was followed by another resolution ordering the liquidation of GENBANK. - In the Memorandum of Agreement between Allied Banking Corp (Allied) and Amulfo Aurellano as liquidator of GENBANK, Allied acquired all the assets and assumed the liabilityies of GENBANK, including the receivable due from Yujuico. - Yujuico failed to comply with his obligation prompting Allied to file a complaint for the collection of a sum of money before the CFI Manila (now RTC). - First case: CA affirmed RTC decision in a special proceeding finding that the liquidation of GENBANK was made in bad faith. This decision declared as null and void the liquidation of GENBANK. It was then that Yujuico filed the third party complaint to transfer liability for the default imputed against him by the petitioner to the proposed third-party7 defendants because of their tortious acts which prevented him from performing his obligations. - Second and current proceeding (1987) Yujuico filed a motion to admit Ammended/Supplemental Answer and a Third Party Complaint to impead the Central Bank and Aurellano as third-party defendants. The complaint alleged
A third-party complaint is a procedural device whereby a "third-party" who is neither a party nor privy to the act or deed complained of by the plaintiff, may be brought into the case with leave of court, by the defendant, who acts as third-party plaintiff to enforce against such third-party defendant a right for contribution, indemnity, subrogation or any other relief, in respect of the plaintiffs claim. The third party complaint is independent of, separate and distinct from the plaintiffs complaint.
7

that by reason of the tortuous interference by the CB with the affairs of GENBANK, he was prevented from performing his obligation such that he should not be held liable thereon. RTC Judge Mintu denied the third-party complaint but admitted the amended/supplemental answer. The case was re-raffled where presiding Judge Panis reiterated the order made by Judge Mintu. Both parties filed for motions of partial reconsideration, which were both denied. - CA, in a petition for certiorari questioning the denied motions, rendered a decision nullifying the RTC order. The RTC judge was found to be in grave abuse of discretion and was ordered to admit the third-party complaint. - Petitioner claims that the cause of action alleged in the third-party complaint has already prescribed. Being founded on what was termed as "tortious interference," petitioner asserts that under the CC on quasi-delict" the action against third-party defendants should have been filed within four (4) years from the date the cause of action accrued. On the theory that the cause of action accrued on March 25, 1977, the date when the Monetary Board ordered GENBANK to desist from doing business in the Philippines, petitioner maintains that the claim should have been filed at the latest on March 25, 1981. On the other hand, private respondent relies on the "Doctrine of Relations" or "Relations Back Doctrine" to support his claim that the cause of action as against the proposed third-party defendant accrued only on December 12,1986 when the decision in CA (first case)became final and executory. It is contended that while the third party complaint was filed only on June 17,1987, it must be deemed to have been instituted on February 7, 1979 when the complaint in the case was filed. ISSUE 1. WON there was ground to admit the third-party complaint 2. WON the cause of action under the third-party complaint prescribed HELD 1. YES - The first instance is allowable and should be allowed if it will help in clarifying in a single proceeding the multifarious issues involved arising from a single transaction. - The judgment of the CA in its first decision is the substantive basis of private respondent's proposed third-party complaint. There is merit in private respondent's position that if held liable on the promissory note, they are seeking, by means of the third-party complaint, to transfer unto the third-party defendants liability on the note by reason of the illegal liquidation of GENBANK which was the basis for the assignment of the promissory note. If there was any confusion at all on the ground/s alleged in the third-party complaint, it was the claim of third-party plaintiff for other damages in addition to any amount which he may be called upon to pay under the original complaint. While these allegations in the proposed third-party complaint may cause delay in the disposition of the main suit, it cannot be outrightly asserted that it would not serve any purpose. - The tests to determine whether the claim for indemnity in a third-party claim is "in respect of plaintiff 's claim" are: (a) whether it arises out of the same transaction on which the plaintiff's claim is based, or whether the third-party's claim, although arising out of another or different contract or transaction, is connected with the plaintiffs claim; (b) whether the third-party defendant would be liable to the plaintiff or to the defendant for all or part of the plaintiffs claim against the original defendant, although the third-party defendant's liability arises out of another transaction; or (c) whether the third-party

CAUSATION
BATACLAN V MEDINA 102 PHIL 181 MONTEMAYOR; October 22, 1957
FACTS - Juan Bataclan rode Bus No. 30 of the Medina Transportation, driven by Saylon, shortly after midnight. While the bus was running very fast on a highway, one of the front tires burst. The bus fell into a canal and turned turtle. Four passengers could not get out, including Bataclan. It appeared that gasoline began to leak from the overturned bus. Ten men came to help. One of them carried a torch and when he approached the bus, a fierce fire started, burning the four passengers trapped inside. - The trial court was of the opinion that the proximate cause of the death of Bataclan was not the overturning of the bus, but rather, the fire that burned the bus, including himself and his co-passengers who were unable to leave it; that at the time the fire started, Bataclan, though he must have suffered physical injuries, perhaps serious, was still alive, and so damages were awarded, not for his death, but for the physical injuries suffered by him. ISSUES What is the proximate cause of death of the four passengers? HELD The proximate cause of death is the overturning of the bus. - see definition of proximate cause under A1 - It may be that ordinarily, when a passenger bus overturns, and pins down a passenger, merely causing him physical injuries, "If through some event, unexpected and extraordinary, the overturned bus is set on fire, say, by lightning, or if some highwaymen after looting the vehicle sets it on fire, and the passenger is burned to death, one might still contend that the proximate

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cause of his death was the fire and not the overturning of the vehicle. But in the present case and under the circumstances obtaining in the same, we do not hesitate to hold that the proximate cause of the death of Bataclan was the overturning of the bus, this for the reason that when the vehicle turned not only on 'Its side but completely on its back, the leaking of the gasoline from the tank was not unnatural or unexpected; that the coming of the men with a lighted torch was in response to the call for help, made not only by the passengers, but most probably, by the driver and the conductor themselves, and that because it was very dark (about 2:30 in the morning), the rescuers had to carry a light with them; and coming as they did from a rural area where lanterns and flashlights were not available, they had to use a torch, the most handy and available; and what was more natural than that said rescuers should innocently approach the overturned vehicle to extend the aid and effect the rescue requested from them. In other words, the coming of the men with the torch was to be expected and was a natural sequence of the overturning of the bus, the trapping of some of its passengers and the call for outside help. What is more, the burning of the bus can also in part be attributed to the negligence of the carrier, through its driver and its conductor. According to the witnesses, the driver and the conductor were on the road walking back and forth. They, or at least, the driver should and must have known that in the position in which the overturned bus was, gasoline could and must have leaked from the gasoline tank and soaked the area in and around the bus, this aside from the fact that gasoline when spilled, specially over a large area, can be smelt and detected -even from a distance, and yet neither the driver nor the conductor would appear to have cautioned or taken steps to warn the rescuers not to bring the lighted torch too near the bus. -(I guess this case says, if not for the overturning of the bus then the leak and the fire wouldnt have happened)

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victims would not have died, had they not opened the tank which they were not authorized to open in the first place. They find it illogical that the septic tank which had been around since the 50s would be the proximate cause of an accident which occurred only 20 years later, especially since no other deaths or injuries related to the tank had ever occurred. Disposition amended decision of the CA is AFFIRMED

- Both parties filed their separate MFRs; the CA rendered an amended decision granting Davao Citys MFR, dismissing the case. Hence this petition. ISSUES 1. WON Davao City is guilty of negligence 2. WON such negligence is the proximate cause of the deaths of the victims HELD 1. NO - Although public respondent had been remiss in its duty to re-empty the tank annually (for almost 20 years), such negligence was not a continuing one. Upon learning from the market master about the need to clean said tank, it immediately responded by issuing invitations to bid for such service. Public respondent lost no time in taking up remedial measures to meet the situation. Also, public respondents failure to empty the tank had not caused any sanitary accidents despite its proximity to several homes and the public market as it was covered in lead and was air-tight. In fact, the public toilet connected to it was used several times daily all those years, and all those people have remained unscathed which is ironically evidenced by the petitioners witnesses. The only indication that the tank was full was when water began to leak, and even then no reports of casualties from gas poising emerged. - Petitioners in fussing over the lack of ventilation in the tanks backfired as their witnesses were no experts. Neither did they present competent evidence to corroborate their testimonies and rebut the city government engineer Alindadas testimony that safety requirements for the tank had been complied with. - The Court also does not agree with petitioners contention that warning signs of noxious gas should be placed around the area of the toilets and septic tank. As defined in Art 694 of the NCC, they are not nuisances per se which would necessitate warning signs for the protection of the public. - Petitioners contention that the market master should have been supervising the area of the tank is also untenable. Work on the tank was still forthcoming since the awarding to the winning bidder was yet to be made by the Committee on Awardshence, there was nothing to supervise. 2. NO - Proximate cause is defined as that cause which in natural and continuous sequence unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result would not have occurred. To be entitled to damages, one must prove under Art 2179 of the NCC that the defendants negligence was the proximate cause of the injury. A test for such a relationship is given in Taylor v Manila Electric Railroad and Light Co. which states that a distinction must be made between the accident and the injury, between the event itself, without which there could have been no accident, and those acts of the victim not entering into it, independent of it, but contributing to his own proper hurt. - A toxic gas leakage could only have happened by opening the tanks cover. The accident is thus of the victims own doingan ordinarily prudent person should be aware of the attended risks of cleaning out the tank. This was especially true for the victim, Bertulano, since he was an old hand to septic services and is expected to know the hazards of the job. The victims failure to take precautionary measures for their safety was the proximate cause of the accident. - When a person holds himself out as being competent to do things requiring professional skill, he will be held liable for negligence if he fails to exhibit the care and skill required in what he attempts to do. As the CA observed, the

URBANO V IAC 157 SCRA 1 GUTIERREZ JR; January 7, 1988


NATURE Petition to review the decision of the then IAC FACTS ON oct. 23, 1980, Marcelo Javier was hacked by the Filomeno Urbano using a bolo. As a result of which, Javier suffered a 2-inch incised wound on his right palm. On November 14, 1981, which was the 22nd day after the incident, Javier was rushed to the hospital in a very serious condition. When admitted to the hospital, Javier had lockjaw and was having convulsions. Dr. Edmundo Exconde who personally attended to Javier found that the latter's serious condition was caused by tetanus toxin. He noticed the presence of a healing wound in Javier's palm which could have been infected by tetanus. On November 15, 1980, Javier died in the hospital. - In an information, Urbano was charged with the crime of homicide before the then Circuit Criminal Court of Dagupan City. - The trial court found Urbano guilty as charged. The lower courts held that Javier's death was the natural and logical consequence of Urbano's unlawful act. He was sentenced accordingly. - The then IAC affirmed the conviction of Urbano on appeal. - Appellant alleges that the proximate cause of the victim's death was due to his own negligence in going back to work without his wound being properly healed, and that he went to catch fish in dirty irrigation canals in the first week of November, 1980. He states that the proximate cause of the death of Marcelo Javier was due to his own negligence, that Dr. Mario Meneses found no tetanus in the injury, and that Javier got infected with tetanus when after two weeks he returned to his farm and tended his tobacco plants with his bare hands exposing the wound to harmful elements like tetanus germs. ISSUE WON there was an efficient intervening cause from the time Javier was wounded until his death which would exculpate Urbano from any liability for Javier's death HELD YES. - The case involves the application of Article 4 of the Revised Penal Code which provides that "Criminal liability shall be incurred: (1) By any person committing a felony (delito) although the wrongful act done be different from that which he intended ..." Pursuant to this provision "an accused is criminally responsible for acts committed by him in violation of law and for all the natural and logical consequences resulting therefrom." - The record is clear that - The evidence on record does not clearly show that the wound inflicted by Urbano was infected with tetanus at the time of the infliction of the wound. The evidence merely confirms that the wound, which was already healing at the time Javier suffered the symptoms of the fatal

FERNANDO V CA (City of Davao) 208 SCRA 714 MEDIALDEA; May 8, 1992


NATURE Petition for review on certiorari FACTS - Bibiano Morta, market master of the Agdao Public Market filed a requisition request with the Chief of Property for the re-emptying of the septic tank of Agdao. Invitations to bid for cleaning out the tanks were issued, which was won by Bascon. However, before the date they were to work, one of the bidders, Bertulano, and four other companions including an Alberto Fernando were found dead inside the septic tank. The City Engineers office, upon investigation, found that the men entered without clearance or consent of the market master. They apparently did the re-emptying as the tank was nearly empty. The autopsy showed that the victims died of asphyxia caused by lack of oxygen supply in the body. Their lungs had burst due to their intake of toxic sulfide gas produced from the waste matter in said tank. *Di nakalagay sa case, pero mukhang kinasuhan ni Sofia Fernando yung Davao City for negligence in a previous case dahil namatay yung asawa nya - Upon dismissal of the case by the TC, petitioners appealed to then IAC (now CA) which set aside the judgment and rendered a new one, granting the families of the deceased men P30k each in compensatory damages, P20k each as moral damages and P10k for attorneys fees.

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ailment, somehow got infected with tetanus However, as to when the wound was infected is not clear from the record. - PROXIMATE CAUSE "that cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result would not have occurred."And more comprehensively, "the proximate legal cause is that acting first and producing the injury, either immediately or by setting other events in motion, all constituting a natural and continuous chain of events, each having a close causal connection with its immediate predecessor, the final event in the chain immediately effecting the injury as a natural and probable result of the cause which first acted, under such circumstances that the person responsible for the first event should, as an ordinarily prudent and intelligent person, have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of his act or default that an injury to some person might probably result therefrom." - The incubation period of tetanus, i.e., the time between injury and the appearance of unmistakable symptoms, ranges from 2 to 56 days. However, over 80 percent of patients become symptomatic within 14 days. A short incubation period indicates severe disease, and when symptoms occur within 2 or 3 days of injury the mortality rate approaches 100 percent. - Non-specific premonitory symptoms such as restlessness, irritability, and headache are encountered occasionally, but the commonest presenting complaints are pain and stiffness in the jaw, abdomen, or back and difficulty swallowing. As the progresses, stiffness gives way to rigidity, and patients often complain of difficulty opening their mouths. In fact, trismus in the commonest manifestation of tetanus and is responsible for the familiar descriptive name of lockjaw. As more muscles are involved, rigidity becomes generalized, and sustained contractions called risus sardonicus. The intensity and sequence of muscle involvement is quite variable. In a small proportion of patients, only local signs and symptoms develop in the region of the injury. In the vast majority, however, most muscles are involved to some degree, and the signs and symptoms encountered depend upon the major muscle groups affected. - Reflex spasm usually occur within 24 to 72 hours of the first symptom, an interval referred to as the onset time. As in the case of the incubation period, a short onset time is associated with a poor prognosis. Spasms are caused by sudden intensification of afferent stimuli arising in the periphery, which increases rigidity and causes simultaneous and excessive contraction of muscles and their antagonists. Spasms may be both painful and dangerous. As the disease progresses, minimal or inapparent stimuli produce more intense and longer lasting spasms with increasing frequency. Respiration may be impaired by laryngospasm or tonic contraction of respiratory muscles which prevent adequate ventilation. Hypoxia may then lead to irreversible central nervous system damage and death. Mild tetanus is characterized by an incubation period of at least 14 days and an onset time of more than 6 days. Trismus is usually present, but dysphagia is absent and generalized spasms are brief and mild. Moderately severe tetanus has a somewhat shorter incubation period and onset time; trismus is marked, dysphagia and generalized rigidity are present, but ventilation remains adequate even during spasms. The criteria for severe tetanus include a short incubation time, and an onset time of 72 hrs., or less, severe trismus, dysphagia and rigidity and frequent prolonged, generalized convulsive spasms. (Harrison's Principle of Internal Medicine, 1983 Edition, pp. 1004-1005; Emphasis supplied) - Therefore, medically speaking, the reaction to tetanus found inside a man's body depends on the incubation period of the disease.

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and was proceeding down General Lacuna Street without headlights when he hit a dump truck owned by Phoenix Construction Inc. (PHOENIX), which was parked on the right hand side of General Lacuna Street (DIONISIOs lane). The dump truck was parked askew in such a manner as to stick out onto the street, partly blocking the way of oncoming traffic. There were no lights nor any so-called "early warning" reflector devices set anywhere near the dump truck, front or rear. The dump truck had earlier that evening been driven home by petitioner Armando U. Carbonel (CARBONEL), its regular driver, with the permission of his employer PHOENIX, in view of work scheduled to be carried out early the following morning, DIONISIO claimed that he tried to avoid a collision by swerving his car to the left but it was too late and his car smashed into the dump truck. As a result of the collision, DIONISIO suffered some physical injuries including some permanent facial scars, a "nervous breakdown" and loss of two gold bridge dentures. DIONISIOs claim: the legal and proximate cause of his injuries was the negligent manner in which Carbonel had parked the dump truck entrusted to him by his employer Phoenix PHOENIX + CARBONELs claim: the proximate cause of Dionisio's injuries was his own recklessness in driving fast at the time of the accident, while under the influence of liquor, without his headlights on and without a curfew pass; if there was negligence in the manner in which the dump truck was parked, that negligence was merely a "passive and static condition" and that private respondent Dionisio's recklessness constituted an intervening, efficient cause determinative of the accident and the injuries he sustained. TC: in favor of Dionisio, awarded damages in favor of Dionisio IAC: in favor of Dionisio, reduced the damages awarded ISSUES Factual issues: (court discussed this to administer substantial justice without remanding the case to the lower court since both TC and IAC did not consider defenses set by petitioners) 1. WON private respondent Dionisio had a curfew pass valid and effective for that eventful night 2. WON Dionisio was driving fast or speeding just before the collision with the dump truck; 3. WON Dionisio had purposely turned off his car's headlights before contact with the dump truck 4. WON Dionisio was intoxicated at the time of the accident. Substantial Issues: 5. WON the legal and proximate cause of the accident and of Dionisio's injuries was the wrongful or negligent manner in which the dump truck was parked a. WON the drivers negligence was merely a "passive and static condition" and that Dionisio's negligence was an "efficient intervening cause," and that consequently Dionisio's negligence must be regarded as the legal and proximate cause of the accident rather than the earlier negligence of Carbonel b. WON the court, based on the last clear chance doctrine, should hold Dionisio alone responsible for his accident 6. WON Phoenix has successfully proven that they exercised due care in the selection and supervision of the dump truck driver 7. WON the amount of damages awarded should be modified HELD FACTUAL

- In the case at bar, Javier suffered a 2-inch incised wound on his right palm when he parried the bolo which Urbano used in hacking him. This incident took place on October 23, 1980. After 22 days, or on November 14, 1980, he suffered the symptoms of tetanus, like lockjaw and muscle spasms. The following day, November 15, 1980, he died. If, therefore, the wound of Javier inflicted by the appellant was already infected by tetanus germs at the time, it is more medically probable that Javier should have been infected with only a mild cause of tetanus because the symptoms of tetanus appeared on the 22nd day after the hacking incident or more than 14 days after the infliction of the wound. Therefore, the onset time should have been more than six days. Javier, however, died on the second day from the onset time. The more credible conclusion is that at the time Javier's wound was inflicted by the appellant, the severe form of tetanus that killed him was not yet present. Consequently, Javier's wound could have been infected with tetanus after the hacking incident. Considering the circumstance surrounding Javier's death, his wound could have been infected by tetanus 2 or 3 or a few but not 20 to 22 days before he died. The rule is that the death of the victim must be the direct, natural, and logical consequence of the wounds inflicted upon him by the accused. And since we are dealing with a criminal conviction, the proof that the accused caused the victim's death must convince a rational mind beyond reasonable doubt. The medical findings, however, lead us to a distinct possibility that the infection of the wound by tetanus was an efficient intervening cause later or between the time Javier was wounded to the time of his death. The infection was, therefore, distinct and foreign to the crime. - Doubts are present. There is a likelihood that the wound was but the remote cause and its subsequent infection, for failure to take necessary precautions, with tetanus may have been the proximate cause of Javier's death with which the petitioner had nothing to do. - A prior and remote cause cannot be made the be of an action if such remote cause did nothing more than furnish the condition or give rise to the occasion by which the injury was made possible, if there intervened between such prior or remote cause and the injury a distinct, successive, unrelated, and efficient cause of the injury, even though such injury would not have happened but for such condition or occasion. If no danger existed in the condition except because of the independent cause, such condition was not the proximate cause. And if an independent negligent act or defective condition sets into operation the instances which result in injury because of the prior defective condition, such subsequent act or condition is the proximate cause DISPOSITION :. The petitioner is ACQUITTED of the crime of homicide.

PHOENIX CONSTRUCTION, INC. (CARBONEL) VS. IAC (DIONISIO) 148 SCRA 353 FELICIANO, MARCH 10, 1987
NATURE Petition for review FACTS -About 1:30 am, Leonardo Dionisio (DIONISIO) was driving home (he lived in Bangkal, Makati) from cocktails/dinner meeting with his boss where he had taken a shot or two of liquor. He had just crossed the intersection of General Lacuna and General Santos Sts. At Bangkal, Makati (not far from his home)

torts & damages


1. NO. none was found with Dionisio. He was not able to produce any curfew pass during the trial. (It is important to determine if he had a curfew pass to shed light to the 2nd and 3rd factual issues) -Testimony of Patrolman Cuyno who had taken DIONISIO to Makati Med testified that none was found with Dionisio. Although Dionisio offered a certification attesting that he did have a valid curfew pass, the certification did not specify any serial number or date or period of effectivity of the supposed curfew pass. 2. YES. Testimony of Patrolman Cuyno attesting that people gathered at the scene of the accident told him that Dionisios Car was MOVING FAST and that he DID NOT have its HEADLIGTS ON. Ratio. The testimony of Patrolman Cuyno is admissible not under the official records exception to the hearsay rule but rather as part of the res gestae. Testimonial evidence under this exception to the hearsay rule consists of excited utterances made on the occasion of an occurrence or event sufficiently startling in nature so as to render inoperative the normal reflective thought processes of the observer and hence made as a spontaneous reaction to the occurrence or event, and not the result of reflective thought. -Dionisio claimed that he was traveling at 30kph and had just crossed the intersection of General Santos and General Lacuna Streets and had started to accelerate when his headlights failed just before the collision took place. He also asserts that Patrolman Cuynos testimony was hearsay and did not fall within any of the recognized exceptions to the hearsay rule since the facts he testified to were not acquired by him through official information and had not been given by the informants pursuant to any duty to do so. -BUT: an automobile speeding down a street and suddenly smashing into a stationary object in the dead of night is a sufficiently startling event as to evoke spontaneous, rather than reflective, reactions from observers who happened to be around at that time. The testimony of Patrolman Cuyno was therefore admissible as part of the res gestae and should have been considered by the trial court. Clearly, substantial weight should have been ascribed to such testimony, even though it did not, as it could not, have purported to describe quantitatively the precise velocity at which Dionisio was travelling just before impact with the Phoenix dump truck. 3. YES. Phoenixs theory more credible than Dionisios. DIONISIOS CLAIM: he had his headlights on but that, at the crucial moment, these had in some mysterious if convenient way malfunctioned and gone off, although he succeeded in switching his lights on again at "bright" split seconds before contact with the dump truck PHOENIXs CLAIM: Dionisio purposely shut off his headlights even before he reached the intersection so as not to be detected by the police in the police precinct which he (being a resident in the area) knew was not far away from the intersection (less than 200m away). 4. NOT ENOUGH EVIDENCE TO CONCLUDE ANYTHING. EVIDENCE PRESENTED: Patrolman Cuyno attested that Dionisio smelled of liquor at the time he was taken to Makati med + Dionisio admitted he had taken a shot or two - not enough evidence to show how much liquor Dionisio had in fact taken and the effects of that upon his physical faculties or upon his judgment or mental alertness. "One shot or two" of hard liquor may affect different people differently. SUBSTANTIAL 5. YES. The collision of Dionisio's car with the dump track was a natural and foreseeable consequence of the truck driver's negligence. Private respondent Dionisio's negligence was "only contributory," that the "immediate and

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defendant to protect the plaintiff against 'that occasional negligence which is one of the ordinary incidents of human life, and therefore to be anticipated.' Thus, a defendant who blocks the sidewalk and forces the plaintiff to walk in a street where the plaintiff will be exposed to the risks of heavy traffic becomes liable when the plaintiff is run down by a car, even though the car is negligently driven; and one who parks an automobile on the highway without lights at night is not relieved of responsibility when another negligently drives into it - - "

proximate cause" of the injury remained the truck driver's "lack of due care" and that consequently respondent Dionisio may recover damages though such damages are subject to mitigation by the courts a. NO. Besides, this argument had no validity under our jurisdiction and even in the United States, the distinctions between" cause" and "condition" have already been "almost entirely discredited. - the truck driver's negligence far from being a "passive and static condition" was rather an indispensable and efficient cause; Dionisio's negligence, although later in point of time than the truck driver's negligence and therefore closer to the accident, was not an efficient intervening or independent cause. The petitioner truck driver owed a duty to private respondent Dionisio and others similarly situated not to impose upon them the very risk the truck driver had created. Dionisio's negligence was not of an independent and overpowering nature as to cut, as it were, the chain of causation in fact between the improper parking of the dump truck and the accident, nor to sever the juris vinculum of liability.
FROM PROF. PROSSER AND KEETON: "Cause and condition. Many courts have sought to distinguish between the active "cause" of the harm and the existing "conditions" upon which that cause operated If the defendant has created only a passive static condition which made the damage possible, the defendant is said not to be liable. But so far as the fact of causation is concerned, in the sense of necessary antecedents which have played an important part in producing the result, it is quite impossible to distinguish between active forces and passive situations, particularly since, as is invariably the case the latter am the result of other active forces which have gone before. The defendant who spills gasoline about the premises creates a "condition," but the act may be culpable because of the danger of fire. When a spark ignites the gasoline, the condition has done quite as much to bring about the fire as the spark; and since that is the very risk which the defendant has created, the defendant will not escape responsibility. Even the lapse of a considerable time during which the "condition" remains static will not necessarily affect liability; one who digs a trench in the highway may still be liable to another who falls into it a month afterward. "Cause" and "condition" still find occasional mention in the decisions; but the distinction is now almost entirely discredited So far as it has any validity at all, it must refer to the type of case where the forces set in operation by the defendant have come to rest in a position of apparent safety. and some new force intervenes. But even in such cases, it is not the distinction between "cause" and "condition" which is important, but the nature of the risk and the character of the intervening cause." "Foreseeable Intervening Causes. If the intervening cause is one which in ordinary human experience is reasonably to be anticipated, or one which the defendant has reason to anticipate under the particular circumstances, the defendant may be negligent, among other reasons, because of failure to guard against it; or the defendant may be negligent only for that reason Thus one who sets a fire may be required to foresee that an ordinary, usual and customary wind arising later will spread it beyond the defendant's own property, and therefore to take precautions to prevent that event. The person who leaves the combustible or explosive material exposed in a public place may foresee the risk of fire from some independent source. x x x In all of these cases there is an intervening cause combining with the defendant's conduct to produce the result and in each case the defendant's negligence consists in failure to protect the plaintiff against that very risk. Obviously the defendant cannot be relieved from liability by the fact that the risk or a substantial and important part of the risk, to which the defendant has subjected the plaintiff has indeed come to pass. Foreseeable intervening forces are within the scope of the original risk, and hence of the defendant's negligence. The courts are quite generally agreed that intervening causes which fall fairly in this category will not supersede the defendant's responsibility. Thus it has been held that a defendant will be required to anticipate the usual weather of the vicinity, including all ordinary forces of nature such as usual wind or rain, or snow or frost or fog or even lightning; that one who leaves an obstruction on the road or a railroad track should foresee that a vehicle or a train will run into it; x x x. The risk created by the defendant may include the intervention of the foreseeable negligence of others. x x x [T]he standard of reasonable conduct may require the

b. NO. The last clear chance doctrine of the common law was imported into our jurisdiction by Picart vs. Smith but it is a matter for debate whether, or to what extent, it has found its way into the Civil Code of the Philippines. Accordingly, it is difficult to see what role, if any, the common law last clear chance doctrine has to play in a jurisdiction where the common law concept of contributory negligence as an absolute bar to recovery by the plaintiff, has itself been rejected, as it has been in Article 2179 of the Civil Code of the Philippines. -The relative location in the continuum of time of the plaintiff's and the defendant's negligent acts or omissions, is only one of the relevant factors that may be taken into account. Of more fundamental importance are the nature of the negligent act or omission of each party and the character and gravity of the risks created by such act or omission for the rest of the community. ON LAST CLEAR CHANCE DOCTRINE: The historical function of that doctrine in the common law was to mitigate the harshness of another common law doctrine or rule-that of contributory negligence. The common law rule of contributory negligence prevented any recovery at all by a plaintiff who was also negligent, even if the plaintiff's negligence was relatively minor as compared with the wrongful act or omission of the defendant. The common law notion of last clear chance permitted courts to grant recovery to a plaintiff who had also been negligent provided that the defendant had the last clear chance to avoid the casualty and failed to do so. 6. NO. The circumstance that Phoenix had allowed its track driver to bring the dump truck to his home whenever there was work to be done early the following morning, when coupled with the failure to show any effort on the part of Phoenix to supervise the manner in which the dump truck is parked when away from company premises, is an affirmative showing of culpa in vigilando on the part of Phoenix. 7. YES. Taking into account the comparative negligence ot DIONISIO and the petitioners, the demands of substantial justice are satisfied by allocating most of the damages on a 20-80 ratio. As to the other awards of damages, sustain. 20% of the damages awarded by the respondent appellate court, except the award of P10,000.00 as exemplary damages and P4,500.00 as attorney's fees and costs, shall be home by private respondent Dionisio; only the balance of 800% needs to be paid by petitioners Carbonel and Phoenix who shall be solidarily liable therefor to the former. The award of exemplary damages and attorney's fees and costs shall be home exclusively by the petitioners. Phoenix is of course entitled to reimbursement from Carbonel. Disposition. WHEREFORE, the decision of the respondent appellate court is modified by reducing the aggregate amount of compensatory damages, loss of expected income and moral damages private respondent Dionisio is entitled to by 20% of such amount. Costs against the petitioners. SO ORDERED.

torts & damages


PILIPINAS BANK V CA (REYES) 234 SCRA 435 PUNO; July 25, 1994
NATURE - Petition for review of CA decision FACTS - FLORENCIO REYES issued two postdated checks. These are for WINNER INDUSTRIAL CORP. in amount of P21T due Oct.10, 1979 and for Vicente TUI in amount of P11.4T due Oct.12. - To cover the face value of the checks, he requested PCIB Money Shop's manager to effect the withdrawal of P32T from his savings account and have it deposited with his current account with PILIPINAS BANK. - PILIPINAS BANKS Current Account Bookkeeper made an error in depositing the amount: he thought it was for a certain FLORENCIO AMADOR. He, thus, posted the deposit in the latter's account not noticing that the depositor's surname in the deposit slip was REYES. - On Oct.11, the Oct.10 check in favor of WINNER INDUSTRIAL was presented for payment. Since the ledger of Florencio REYES indicated that his account had only a balance of P4,078.43, it was dishonored and the payee was advised to try it for next clearing. - It was redeposited but was again dishonored. The same thing happened to the Oct.12 check. The payee then demanded a cash payment of the checks face value which REYES did if only to save his name. - Furious, he immediately proceeded to the bank and urged an immediate verification of his account. That was only when they noticed the error. RTC: ordered petitioner to pay P200T compensatory damages, P100T moral damages, P25T attorneys fees, as well as costs of suit. CA: modified amount to just P50T moral damages and P25T attorneys fees and costs of suit. ISSUE WON Art.21798 of NCC is applicable HELD NO - For it to apply, it must be established that private respondent's own negligence was the immediate and proximate cause of his injury. Definition of Proximate Cause: "any cause which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the result complained of and without which would not have occurred and from which it ought to have been foreseen or reasonably anticipated by a person of ordinary case that the injury complained of or some similar injury, would result therefrom as a natural and probable consequence." Reasoning The proximate cause of the injury is the negligence of petitioner's employee in erroneously posting the cash deposit of private respondent in the name of another depositor who had a similar first name.

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-The unanimity of the CA and the trial court in their factual ascertainment that petitioners negligence was the proximate cause of the accident bars us from supplanting their findings and substituting these with our own. -That the negligence of petitioners was the proximate cause of the accident was aptly discussed in the lower courts finding: Facts obtaining in this case are crystal clear that the accident of February 28, 1988 which caused almost the life and limb of Fulgencio Dacara, Jr. when his car turned turtle was the existence of a pile of earth from a digging done relative to the base failure at Matahimik Street nary a lighting device or a reflectorized barricade or sign perhaps which could have served as an adequate warning to motorists especially during the thick of the night where darkness is pervasive. Contrary to the testimony of the witnesses for the defense that there were signs, gasera which was buried so that its light could not be blown off by the wind and barricade, none was ever presented to stress the point that sufficient and adequate precautionary signs were placed. If indeed signs were placed thereat, how then could it be explained that according to the report even of the policeman, none was found at the scene of the accident. -The provisions of Article 2189 9 of the New Civil Code capsulizes the responsibility of the city government relative to the maintenance of roads and bridges since it exercises the control and supervision over the same. Failure of the defendant to comply with the statutory provision is tantamount to negligence which renders the City government liable -Petitioners belatedly point out that Fulgencio Jr. was driving at the speed of 60 kilometers per hour (kph) when he met the accident. This speed was allegedly well above the maximum limit of 30 kph allowed on city streets with light traffic, as provided under the Land Transportation and Traffic Code Thus, petitioners assert that Fulgencio Jr., having violated a traffic regulation, should be presumed negligent pursuant to Article 2185 of the Civil Code. -These matters were, however, not raised by petitioners at any time during the trial. It is evident from the records that they brought up for the first time in their Motion for Reconsideration. -It is too late in the day for them to raise this new issue. To consider their belatedly raised arguments at this stage of the proceedings would trample on the basic principles of fair play, justice, and due process. -Indeed, both the trial and the appellate courts findings, which are amply substantiated by the evidence on record, clearly point to petitioners negligence as the proximate cause of the damages suffered by respondents car. No adequate reason has been given to overturn this factual conclusion. 2. No. -To award moral damages, a court must be satisfied with proof of the following requisites: (1) an injury--whether physical, mental, or psychological-clearly sustained by the claimant; (2) a culpable act or omission factually established; (3) a wrongful act or omission of the defendant as the proximate cause of the injury sustained by the claimant; and (4) the award of damages predicated on any of the cases stated in Article 2219. -Article 2219(2) specifically allows moral damages to be recovered for quasidelicts, provided that the act or omission caused physical injuries. There can be no recovery of moral damages unless the quasi-delict resulted in physical injury. -In the present case, the Complaint alleged that respondents son Fulgencio Jr. sustained physical injuries.
. Provinces, cities and municipalities shall be liable for damages for the death of, or injuries suffered by, any person by reason of the defective condition of roads, streets, bridges, public buildings, and other public works under their control or supervision.
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- The bank employee is deemed to have failed to exercise the degree of care required in the performance of his duties. Dispositive Petition denied.

QUEZON CITY V DACARA PANGANIBAN; JUNE 15, 2005


NATURE Petition for review of a decision of the Court of Appeals FACTS -On February 28, 1988 at about 1:00 A.M., Fulgencio Dacara, Jr., owner of 87 Toyota Corolla 4-door Sedan, while driving the said vehicle, rammed into a pile of earth/street diggings found at Matahimik St., Quezon City, which was then being repaired by the Quezon City government. -As a result, Dacara, Jr. allegedly sustained bodily injuries and the vehicle suffered extensive damage for it turned turtle when it hit the pile of earth. -Indemnification was sought from the city government, which however, yielded negative results. -Fulgencio P. Dacara, for and in behalf of his minor son, filed a Complaint for damages against Quezon City and Engr. Ramir Tiamzon. -Defendants admitted the occurrence of the incident but alleged that the subject diggings was provided with a mound of soil and barricaded with reflectorized traffic paint with sticks placed before or after it which was visible during the incident. -In short, defendants claimed that they exercised due care by providing the area of the diggings all necessary measures to avoid accident, and that the reason why Fulgencio Dacara, Jr. fell into the diggings was precisely because of the latters negligence and failure to exercise due care. -RTC ruled in favor of Dacara, ordering the defendants to indemnify the plaintiff the sum of twenty thousand pesos as actual/compensatory damages, P10,000.00 as moral damages, P5,000.00 as exemplary damages, P10,000.00 as attorneys fees and other costs of suit. -Upon appeal, CA agreed with the RTCs finding that petitioners negligence was the proximate cause of the damage suffered by respondent. -Hence, this Petition ISSUES 1. WON petitioners negligence is the proximate cause of the incident 2. WON moral damages are recoverable 3. WON exemplary damages and attorneys fees are recoverable HELD 1. Yes. -Proximate cause is defined as any cause that produces injury in a natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, such that the result would not have occurred otherwise. Proximate cause is determined from the facts of each case, upon a combined consideration of logic, common sense, policy and precedent. -What really caused the subject vehicle to turn turtle is a factual issue that this Court cannot pass upon, absent any whimsical or capricious exercise of judgment by the lower courts or an ample showing that they lacked any basis for their conclusions.

Art. 2179. When the plaintiff's own negligence was the immediate and proximate cause of his injury, he cannot recover damages. But if his negligence was only contributory, the immediate and proximate cause of the injury being the defendant's lack of due care, the plaintiff may recover damages, but the courts shall mitigate the damages to be awarded.
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-It is apparent from the Decisions of the trial and the appellate courts, however, that no other evidence (such as a medical certificate or proof of medical expenses) was presented to prove Fulgencio Jr.s bare assertion of physical injury. Thus, there was no credible proof that would justify an award of moral damages based on Article 2219(2) of the Civil Code. -Moral damages are not punitive in nature, but are designed to compensate and alleviate in some way the physical suffering, mental anguish, fright, serious anxiety, besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, moral shock, social humiliation, and similar injury unjustly inflicted on a person. -Well-settled is the rule that moral damages cannot be awarded in the absence of proof of physical suffering, mental anguish, fright, serious anxiety, besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, moral shock, social humiliation, or similar injury. The award of moral damages must be solidly anchored on a definite showing that respondent actually experienced emotional and mental sufferings. 3. Yes. -Exemplary damages cannot be recovered as a matter of right; they can be awarded only after claimants have shown their entitlement to moral, temperate or compensatory damages. -In the case before us, respondent sufficiently proved before the courts a quo that petitioners negligence was the proximate cause of the incident, thereby establishing his right to actual or compensatory damages. He has adduced adequate proof to justify his claim for the damages caused his car. -Article 2231 of the Civil Code mandates that in cases of quasi-delicts, exemplary damages may be recovered if the defendant acted with gross negligence. -Gross negligence means such utter want of care as to raise a presumption that the persons at fault must have been conscious of the probable consequences of their carelessness, and that they must have nevertheless been indifferent (or worse) to the danger of injury to the person or property of others. The negligence must amount to a reckless disregard for the safety of persons or property. -Such a circumstance obtains in the instant case. -The facts of the case show a complete disregard by petitioners of any adverse consequence of their failure to install even a single warning device at the area under renovation. -Article 2229 of the Civil Code provides that exemplary damages may be imposed by way of example or correction for the public good. The award of these damages is meant to be a deterrent to socially deleterious actions. Dispositive The Decision of the Court of Appeals is affirmed, with the modification that the award of moral damages is deleted.

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got angry and demanded that Javier pay for his soaked palay. A quarrel between them ensued. Urbano hacked Javier hitting him on the right palm of his hand . Javier who was then unarmed ran away from Urbano but was overtaken by Urbano who hacked him again hitting Javier on the left leg with the back portion of said bolo, causing a swelling on said leg. On November 14,1980, Javier was rushed to the Nazareth General Hospital in a very serious condition. Javier had lockjaw and was having convulsions. Dr. Edmundo Exconde who personally attended to Javier found that the latter's serious condition was caused by tetanus toxin. He noticed the presence of a healing wound in Javier's palm which could have been infected by tetanus. On November 15, 1980 Javier died in the hospital. Appellants claim: -there was an efficient cause which supervened from the time the deceased was wounded to the time of his death -the proximate cause of the victim's death was due to his own negligence in going back to work without his wound being properly healed, and lately, that he went to catch fish in dirty irrigation canals in the first week of November, 1980 - Javier got infected with tetanus when after two weeks he returned to his farm and tended his tobacco plants with his bare hands exposing the wound to harmful elements like tetanus germs. ISSUE: WON there was an efficient intervening cause from the time Javier was wounded until his death which would exculpate Urbano from any liability for Javier's death HELD: Yes. The medical findings lead us to a distinct possibility that the infection of the wound by tetanus was an efficient intervening cause later or between the time Javier was wounded to the time of his death. The infection was, therefore, distinct and foreign to the crime. Reasoning: -The case involves the application of Article 410 of the Revised Penal Code. -The evidence on record does not clearly show that the wound inflicted by Urbano was infected with tetanus at the time of the infliction of the wound. The evidence merely confirms that the wound, which was already healing at the time Javier suffered the symptoms of the fatal ailment, somehow got infected with tetanus However, as to when the wound was infected is not clear from the record. -In Vda. de Bataclan, et al. v. Medina (102 Phil. 1181), we adopted the following definition of proximate cause: "x x x A satisfactory definition of proximate cause is found in Volume 38, pages 695-696 of American Jurisprudence, cited by plaintiffsappellants in their brief. It is as follows: "x x x 'that cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result would not have occurred.' And more comprehensively, the proximate legal cause is that acting first and producing the injury, either immediately or

or seen the call of Araneta, and that he had taken up the two passengers then in the carromata as the first who had offered employment. At or about the same time Pagnaya pulled on the reins of the bridle to free the horse from the control of Agaton Araneta, in order that the vehicle might pass on. Owing, however, to the looseness of the bridle on the horse's head or to the rottenness of the material of which it was made, the bit came out of the horse's mouth; and it became necessary for the driver to get out, which he did, in order to fix the bridle. The horse was then pulled over to near the curb, by one or the other it makes no difference which and Pagnaya tried to fix the bridle. While he was thus engaged, the horse, being free from the control of the bit, became disturbed and moved forward, in doing which he pulled one of the wheels of the carromata up on the sidewalk and pushed Julio Pagnaya over. After going a few yards further the side of the carromata struck a police telephone box which was fixed to a post on the sidewalk, upon which the box came down with a crash and frightened the horse to such an extent that he set out at full speed up the street. Meanwhile one of the passengers, to wit. Basilio Ilano, had alighted while the carromata was as yet alongside the sidewalk; but the other, Proceso Gayetano, had unfortunately retained his seat, and after the runaway horse had proceeded up the street to a point in front of the Mission Hospital, the said Gayetano jumped or fell from the rig, and in so doing received injuries from which he soon died. This action was brought by Consolacion Gabeto, in her own right as widow of Proceso Gayetano, and as guardian ad litem of the three children, Conchita Gayetano, Rosita Gayetano, and Fermin Gayetano, for the purpose of recovering damages incurred by the plaintiff as a result of the death of the said Proceso Gayetano, supposedly caused by the wrongful act of the defendant Agaton Araneta. Judge awarded damages to the widow to which decision Araneta appealed. Issue: WON the stopping of the rig by Agaton Araneta in the middle of the street was too remote from the accident that presently ensued to be considered the legal or proximate cause thereof Held: NO. The evidence indicates that the bridle was old, and the leather of which it was made was probably so weak as to be easily broken. it was Julio who jerked the rein, thereby causing the bit to come out of the horse's mouth; and Julio, after alighting, led the horse over to the curb, and proceeded to fix the bridle; and that in so doing the bridle was slipped entirely off, when the horse, feeling himself free from control, started to go away. Disposition: Judgment is REVERSED.

GABETO V. ARANETA 42 Phil 252. October 17, 1921 Street


Facts: Basilio Ilano and Proceso Gayetano took a carromata near Plaza Gay, in the City of Iloilo, with a view to going to a cockpit on Calle Ledesma in the same City. When the driver of the carromata had turned his horse and started in the direction indicated, the defendant, Agaton Araneta, stepped out into the street, and laying his hands on the reins, stopped the horse, at the same time protesting to the driver that he himself had called this carromata first. The driver, one Julio Pagnaya, replied to the effect that he had not heard

URBANO V IAC (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES) 157 SCRA 1 GUTIERREZ; January 7, 1988
Nature : This is a petition to review the decision of the then Intermediate Appellate Court Facts:When Filomeno Urbano found the place where he stored his palay flooded with water coming from the irrigation canal nearby which had overflowed he went to see what happened and there he saw Marcelo Javier admitted that he was the one responsible for what happened. Urbano then

Art. 4. Criminal liability shall be incurred: (1) By any person committing a felony (delito) although the wrongful act done be different from that which he intended x x x." Pursuant to this provision "an accused is criminally responsible for acts committed by him in violation of law and for all the natural and logical consequences resulting therefrom
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torts & damages


by setting other events in motion, all constituting a natural and continuous chain of events, each having a close causal connection with its immediate predecessor, the final event in the chain immediately effecting the injury as a natural and probable result of the cause which first acted, under such circumstances that the person responsible for the first event should, as an ordinarily prudent and intelligent person, have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of his act or default that an injury to some person might probably result therefrom.' (at pp. 185-186) -The court looked into the nature of tetanus to determine the cause -Medically speaking, the reaction to tetanus found inside a man's body depends on the incubation period of the disease. - Javier suffered a 2-inch incised wound on his right palm when he parried the bolo which Urbano used in hacking him. This incident took place on October 23, 1980. After 22 days, or on November 14, 1980, he suffered the symptoms of tetanus, like lockjaw and muscle spasms. The following day, November 15, 1980, he died. If,therefore,the wound of Javier inflicted by the appellant was already infected by tetanus germs at the time, it is more medically probable that Javier should have been infected with only a mild cause of tetanus because the symptoms of tetanus appeared on the 22nd day after the hacking incident or more than 14 days after the infliction of the wound. -Therefore, the onset time should have been more than six days. Javier, however, died on the second day from the onset time. The more credible conclusion is that at the time Javier's wound was inflicted by the appellant, the severe form of tetanus that killed him was not yet present. Consequently, Javier's wound could have been infected with tetanus after the hacking incident. Considering the circumstance surrounding Javier's death, his wound could have been infected by tetanus 2 or 3 or a few but not 20 to 22 days before he died. The medical findings lead us to a distinct possibility that the infection of the wound by tetanus was an efficient intervening cause later or between the time Javier was wounded to the time of his death. The infection was, therefore, distinct and foreign to the crime. The rule is that the death of the victim must be the direct, natural, and logical consequence of the wounds inflicted upon him by the accused. (People v. Cardenas, supra) As we ruled in Manila Electric Co. v. Remaquillo, et al. (99 Phil. 118). "'A prior and remote cause cannot be made the basis of an action if such remote cause did nothing more than furnish the condition or give rise to the occasion by which the injury was made possible, if there intervened between such prior or remote cause and the injury a distinct, successive, unrelated, and efficient cause of the injury, even though such injury would not have happened but for such condition or occasion. If no danger existed in the condition except because of the independent cause, such condition was not the proximate cause. And if an independent negligent act or defective condition sets into operation the circumstances, which result in injury because of the prior defective condition, such subsequent act or condition is the proximate cause. '(45 C.J. pp. 931-932)." (at p. 125)

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he has exercised prudence and extra diligence to prevent or minimize damage. The Master shall retain overall command of the vessel even on pilotage grounds whereby he can countermand or overrule the order or command of the Harbor Pilot on board. In such event, any damage caused to a vessel or to life and property at ports by reason of the fault or negligence of the Master shall be the responsibility and liability of the registered owner of the vessel concerned without prejudice to recourse against said Master Such liability of the owner or Master of the vessel or its pilots shall be determined by competent authority in appropriate proceedings in the light of the facts and circumstances of each particular case. SEC. 32. Duties and responsibilities of the Pilot or Pilots' Association. The duties and responsibilities of the Harbor Pilot shall be as follows: xxx xxx xxx f) a pilot shall be held responsible for the direction of a vessel from the time he assumes his work as a pilot thereof until he leaves it anchored or berthed safely; Provided, however, that his responsibility shall cease at the moment the Master neglects or refuses to carry out his order. - Customs Administrative Order No. 15-65 issued twenty years earlier likewise provided in Chapter I thereof for the responsibilities of pilots: Par. XXXIX. A Pilot shall be held responsible for the direction of a vessel from the time he assumes control thereof until he leaves it anchored free from shoal; Provided, That his responsibility shall cease at the moment the master neglects or refuses to carry out his instructions. xxx xxx xxx Par. XLIV. Pilots shall properly and safely secure or anchor vessels under their control when requested to do so by the master of such vessels. ISSUE WON both the pilot and the master were negligent HELD YES. - The SC started by saying that in a collision between a stationary object and a moving object, there is a presumption of fault against the moving object (based on common sense and logic). It then went on to determine who between the pilot and the master was negligent. PILOT - A pilot, in maritime law, is a person duly qualified, and licensed, to conduct a vessel into or out of ports, or in certain waters. He is an expert whos supposed to know the seabed, etc. that a master of a ship may not know because the pilot is familiar with the port. He is charged to perform his duties with extraordinary care because the safety of people and property on the vessel and on the dock are at stake. - Capt. Gavino was found to be negligent. The court found that his reaction time (4 minutes) to the anchor not holding ground and the vessel still going too fast was too slow. As an expert he shouldve been reacting quickly to any such happenings. MASTER - In compulsory pilotage, the pilot momentarily becomes the master of the vessel. The master, however may intervene or countermand the pilot if he deems there is danger to the vessel because of the incompetence of the pilot or if the pilot is drunk.

FAR EAST SHIPPING CO V CA (PPA) 297 SCRA 30 REGALADO; October 1, 1998


NATURE Review on certiorari the CA decision affirming TC decision holding FESC and Gavino solidarily liable

FACTS - On June 20, 1980, the M/V PAVLODAR, flying under the flagship of the USSR, owned and operated by the Far Eastern Shipping Company (FESC), arrived at the Port of Manila from Vancouver, British Columbia at about 7:00 o'clock in the morning. The vessel was assigned Berth 4 of the Manila International Port, as its berthing space. Captain Roberto Abellana was tasked by the Philippine Port Authority to supervise the berthing of the vessel. Appellant Senen Gavino was assigned by the Appellant Manila Pilots' Association (MPA) to conduct docking maneuvers for the safe berthing of the vessel to Berth No. 4. - Gavino boarded the vessel at the quarantine anchorage and stationed himself in the bridge, with the master of the vessel, Victor Kavankov, beside him. After a briefing of Gavino by Kavankov of the particulars of the vessel and its cargo, the vessel lifted anchor from the quarantine anchorage and proceeded to the Manila International Port. The sea was calm and the wind was ideal for docking maneuvers. - When the vessel reached the landmark (the big church by the Tondo North Harbor) one-half mile from the pier, Gavino ordered the engine stopped. When the vessel was already about 2,000 feet from the pier, Gavino ordered the anchor dropped. Kavankov relayed the orders to the crew of the vessel on the bow. The left anchor, with 2 shackles, were dropped. However, the anchor did not take hold as expected. The speed of the vessel did not slacken. A commotion ensued between the crew members. A brief conference ensued between Kavankov and the crew members. When Gavino inquired what was all the commotion about, Kavankov assured Gavino that there was nothing to it. - After Gavino noticed that the anchor did not take hold, he ordered the engines half-astern. Abellana, who was then on the pier apron noticed that the vessel was approaching the pier fast. Kavankov likewise noticed that the anchor did not take hold. Gavino thereafter gave the "full-astern" code. Before the right anchor and additional shackles could be dropped, the bow of the vessel rammed into the apron of the pier causing considerable damage to the pier. The vessel sustained damage too. Kavankov filed his sea protest. Gavino submitted his report to the Chief Pilot who referred the report to the Philippine Ports Authority. Abellana likewise submitted his report of the incident. - The rehabilitation of the damaged pier cost the Philippine Ports Authority the amount of P1,126,132.25. PERTINENT RULES on PILOTAGE - The Port of Manila is within the Manila Pilotage District which is under compulsory pilotage pursuant to Section 8, Article III of Philippine Ports Authority Administrative Order No. 03-85: SEC. 8. Compulsory Pilotage Service. For entering a harbor and anchoring thereat, or passing through rivers or straits within a pilotage district, as well as docking and undocking at any pier/wharf, or shifting from one berth or another, every vessel engaged in coastwise and foreign trade shall be under compulsory pilotage. - In case of compulsory pilotage, the respective duties and responsibilities of the compulsory pilot and the master have been specified by the same regulation: SEC. 11. Control of vessels and liability for damage. On compulsory pilotage grounds, the Harbor Pilot providing the service to a vessel shall be responsible for the damage caused to a vessel or to life and property at ports due to his negligence or fault. He can only be absolved from liability if the accident is caused by force majeure or natural calamities provided

torts & damages


- Based on Capt. Kavankovs testimony, he never sensed the any danger even when the anchor didnt hold and they were approaching the dock too fast. He blindly trusted the pilot. This is negligence on his part. He was right beside the pilot during the docking, so he could see and hear everything that the pilot was seeing and hearing. - The masters negligence translates to unseaworthiness of the vessel, and in turn means negligence on the part of FESC. CONCURRENT TORTFEASORS - As a general rule, that negligence in order to render a person liable need not be the sole cause of an injury. It is sufficient that his negligence, concurring with one or more efficient causes other than plaintiff's, is the proximate cause of the injury. Accordingly, where several causes combine to produce injuries, person is not relieved from liability because he is responsible for only one of them, it being sufficient that the negligence of the person charged with injury is an efficient cause without which the injury would not have resulted to as great an extent, and that such cause is not attributable to the person injured. It is no defense to one of the concurrent tortfeasors that the injury would not have resulted from his negligence alone, without the negligence or wrongful acts of the other concurrent tortfeasor. Where several causes producing an injury are concurrent and each is an efficient cause without which the injury would not have happened, the injury may be attributed to all or any of the causes and recovery may be had against any or all of the responsible persons although under the circumstances of the case, it may appear that one of them was more culpable, and that the duty owed by them to the injured person was not the same. No actor's negligence ceases to be a proximate cause merely because it does not exceed the negligence of other actors. Each wrongdoer is responsible for the entire result and is liable as though his acts were the sole cause of the injury. - There is no contribution between joint tortfeasors whose liability is solidary since both of them are liable for the total damage. Where the concurrent or successive negligent acts or omissions of two or more persons, although acting independently, are in combination the direct and proximate cause of a single injury to a third person, it is impossible to determine in what proportion each contributed to the injury and either of them is responsible for the whole injury. Where their concurring negligence resulted in injury or damage to a third party, they become joint tortfeasors and are solidarily liable for the resulting damage under Article 2194 of the Civil Code. Disposition Petition denied. CA affirmed. Capt. Gavino and FESC are solidarily liable.

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negligence, because that vehicle was running at a considerable speed despite the fact that it was negotiating a sharp curve, and, instead of being close to its right side of the road, it was driven on its middle portion thereof and so near the passenger bus coming from the opposite as to sideswipe a passenger on its running board, the owners of the two vehicles are liable solidarily for the death of the passenger, although the liability of one arises from a breach of contract, whereas that of the other springs from a quasidelict. Where the concurrent or successive negligent acts or omission of two or more persons, although acting independently of each other, are, in combination, the direct and proximate cause of a single injury to a third person, and it is impossible to determine in what proportion each contributed to the injury, either is responsible for the whole injury, even though his act alone might not have caused the entire injury, or the same damage might have resulted from the acts of the other tort-feasor. Dispositive Judgment affirmed.

To avoid any liability, Lagunda and Sabido throw all the blame on Mudales. However, Makabuhay, widoy of Custodio, testified that the 6 x 6 truck was running fast when it met the LTB Bus. And Lagunda had time and opportunity to avoid the mishap if he had been sufficiently careful and cautious because the two trucks never collided with each other. By simply swerving to the right side of the road, the 6 x 6 truck could have avoided hitting Custodio. The sideswiping of the deceased and his two fellow passengers took place on broad daylight at about 9:30 in the morning of June 9, 1955 when the LTB bus with full load to passengers was negotiating a sharp curve of a bumpy and sliding downward a slope, whereas the six by six truck was climbing up with no cargoes or passengers on board but for three helpers, owner Sabido and driver Lagunda (tsn. 308-309, Mendoza). LTB passengers had testified to the effect that the 6 x 6 cargo truck was running at a fast rate of speed. Driver Lagunda admitted that three passengers rode on the running board of the bus when his vehicle was still at a distance of 5 or 7 meters from the bus. Despite the presence of a shallow canal on the right side of the road which he could pass over with ease, Lagunda did not avert the accident simply because to use his own language the canal "is not a passage of trucks. Based upon these facts, the Court of First Instance of Laguna and the Court of Appeals concluded that the Laguna-Tayabas Bus Co. hereinafter referred to as the carrier and its driver Mudales (none of whom has appealed), had violated the contract of carriage with Agripino Custodio, whereas petitioners Sabido and Lagunda were guilty of a quasi delict, by reason of which all of them were held solidarity liable. ISSUES 1. WON petitioners were guilty of negligence 2. WON petitioners should be held solidarily liable with the carrier and its driver HELD 1. YES. The views of the Court of Appeals on the speed of the truck and its location at the time of the accident are in the nature of findings of fact, which we cannot disturb in a petition for review by certiorari, such as the one at bar. At any rate, the correctness of said findings is borne out by the very testimony of petitioner Lagunda to the effect that he saw the passengers riding on the running board of the bus while the same was still five or seven meters away from the truck driven by him. Indeed, the distance between the two vehicles was such that he could have avoided sideswiping said passengers if his truck were not running at a great speed. Although the negligence of the carrier and its driver is independent, in its execution, of the negligence of the truck driver and its owner, both acts of negligence are the proximate cause of the death of Agripino Custodio. In fact, the negligence of the first two would not have produced this result without the negligence of petitioners' herein. What is more, petitioners' negligence was the last, in point of time, for Custodio was on the running board of the carrier's bus sometime before petitioners' truck came from the opposite direction, so that, in this sense, petitioners' truck had the last clear chance. 2. YES. Where the carrier bus and its driver were clearly guilty of contributory negligence for having allowed a passenger to ride on the running board of the bus, and where the driver of the other vehicle was also guilty of contributory

VDA. DE BATACLAN VS. MEDINA 102 PHIL 181 MONTEMAYOR; October 22, 1957
NATURE Appeal from the decision of the CFI of Cavite FACTS - Shortly after midnight, a bus of the Medina Transportation, operated by its owner defendant Mariano Medina under a certificate of public convenience, left the town of Amadeo, Cavite, on its way to Pasay City, driven by its regular chauffeur, Conrado Saylon. There were about 18 passengers, including the driver and conductor. - At about 2am, while the bus was running within the jurisdiction of Imus, Cavite, one of the front tires burst and the vehicle began to zig-zag until it fell into a canal or ditch on the right side of the road and turned turtle. - the three passengers Bataclan, Lara and the Visayan and the woman behind them named Natalia Villanueva, could not get out of the overturned bus. - Some of the passengers, after they had clambered up to the road, heard groans and moans from inside the bus. Calls or shouts for help were made to the houses in the neighborhood. After half an hour, came about ten men, one of them carrying a lighted torch made of bamboo with a wick on one end, evidently fueled with petroleum. These men presumably approach the overturned bus, and almost immediately, a fierce fire started, burning and all but consuming the bus, including the 4 passengers trapped inside it. It would appear that as the bus overturned, gasoline began to leak and escape from the gasoline tank. - That same day, the charred bodies of the four deemed passengers inside the bus were removed and duly identified that of Bataclan. His widow, Salud Villanueva brought the present suit to recover from Mariano Medina compensatory, moral, and exemplary damages and attorney's fees in the total amount of P87,150. - the CFI awarded P1,000 plus P600 as attorney's fee, plus P100, the value of the merchandise being carried by Bataclan ISSUES

SABIDO AND LAGUNDA V CUSTODIO, ET AL 17 SCRA 1088 CONCEPCION; August 31, 1966
NATURE Petition for review by certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals FACTS In Barrio Halang, , two trucks, one driven by Mudales and belonging to Laguna-Tayabas Bus Company, and the other driven by Lagunda and owned by Prospero Sabido, going in opposite directions met each other in a road curve. Custodia, LTB bus passenger who was riding on the running board as truck was full of passengers, was sideswiped by the truck driven by Lagunda. As a result, Custodio was injured and died.

torts & damages


1. WON there was negligence on the part of the defendant, through his agent, the driver Saylon, thus making him liable. 2. WON the the proximate cause of the death of Bataclan was not the overturning of the bus, but rather, the fire that burned the bus. HELD 1. NO. Ratio There is evidence to show that at the time of the blow out, the bus was speeding, as testified to by one of the passengers, and as shown by the fact that according to the testimony of the witnesses, including that of the defense, from the point where one of the front tires burst up to the canal where the bus overturned after zig-zaging, there was a distance of about 150 meters. The chauffeur, after the blow-out, must have applied the brakes in order to stop the bus, but because of the velocity at which the bus must have been running, its momentum carried it over a distance of 150 meters before it fell into the canal and turned turtle. Reasoning Our new Civil Code amply provides for the responsibility of common carrier to its passengers and their goods.11 2. YES Ratio Tthe proximate legal cause is that acting first and producing the injury, either immediately or by setting other events in motion, all constituting a natural and continuous chain of events, each having a close causal connection with its immediate predecessor, the final event in the chain immediately effecting the injury as a natural and probable result of the cause which first acted, under such circumstances that the person responsible for the first event should, as an ordinary prudent and intelligent person, have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of his act or default that an injury to some person might probably result therefrom. Reasoning under the circumstances obtaining in the case, we do not hesitate to hold that the proximate cause was the overturning of the bus, this for the reason that when the vehicle turned not only on its side but completely on its back, the leaking of the gasoline from the tank was not unnatural or unexpected; that the coming of the men with a lighted torch was in response to the call for help, made not only by the passengers, but most probably, by the driver and the conductor themselves, and that because it was dark (about 2:30 in the morning), the rescuers had to carry a light with them, and coming as they did from a rural area where lanterns and flashlights were not available; and what was more natural than that said rescuers should innocently approach the vehicle to extend the aid and effect the rescue requested from them. Neither the driver nor the conductor would appear to have cautioned or taken steps to warn the rescuers not to bring the lighted torch too near the bus. - According to the evidence, one of the passengers who, because of the injuries suffered by her, was hospitalized, and while in the hospital, she was visited by the defendant Mariano Medina, and in the course of his visit, she overheard him speaking to one of his bus inspectors, telling said inspector to have the tires of the bus changed immediately because they were already old, and that as a matter of fact, he had been telling the driver to change the said tires, but that the driver did not follow his instructions. If this be true, it goes to prove that the driver had not been diligent and had not taken the necessary precautions to insure the safety of his passengers

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- Three cases were filed and in all 3 the spouses (owners of the jeepney) Mangune and Carreon, (jeepney driver)Manalo, Rabbit and (Rabbits driver)delos Reyes were all impleaded as defendants. - Plaintiffs anchored their suits against spouses Mangune and Carreon and Manalo on their contractual liability. - As against Rabbit and delos Reyes, plaintiffs based their suits on their culpability for a quasi-delict. - Filriters Guaranty Assurance Corporation, Inc. (the insurer of the jeepney) was also impleaded as additional defendant in the civil case filed by the Pascuas. - Damages sought to be claimed in the 3 cases were for medical expenses, burial expenses, loss of wages, for exemplary damages, moral damages and attorney's fees and expenses of litigation. - Rabbit filed a cross-claim for attorney's fees and expenses of litigation. - On the other hand, spouses Mangune and Carreon filed a cross-claim for the repair of the jeepney and for its non-use during the period of repairs. - TC: found the couple and Manalo to be NEGLIGENT and held that there was a breach of the contract of carriage with their passengers; ordered them to pay the damages. Filriters was jointly and severally liable as it was the jeepneys insurer. Rabbit was to be paid by the jeepney party for actual damages. - IAC reversed this ruling in the sense that it found delos Reyes to be negligent; ordered to pay jointly and severally with Rabbit the plaintiffs; Applied primarily (1) the doctrine of last clear chance, (2) the presumption that drivers who bump the rear of another vehicle guilty and the cause of the accident unless contradicted by other evidence, and (3) the substantial factor test to conclude that delos Reyes was negligent. ISSUE: WON THE JEEPNEY OWNERS AND ITS DRIVER ARE LIABLE FOR THE INJURIES AND DEATH SUFFERED BY THE PASSENGERS OF THE JEEPNEY HELD: YES. BUT ONLY THE SPOUSES AND FILRITERS ARE LIABLE. REASONING: TC WAS CORRECT IN APPRECIATING THE FF FACTS CONCERNING MANALOS NEGLIGENCE. (1) That the unrebutted testimony of his passenger Caridad Pascua that the Mangune jeepney was "running fast" that his passengers cautioned driver Manalo to slow down but did not heed the warning (2) The likewise unrebutted testimony of Police Investigator Tacpal of the San Manuel (Tarlac) Police who found that the tracks of the jeepney ran on the Eastern shoulder (outside the concrete paved road) until it returned to the concrete road at a sharp angle, crossing the Eastern lane and the (imaginary) center line and encroaching fully into the western lane where the collision took place as evidenced by the point of impact; (3) The observation of witness Police Corporal Cacalda also of the San Manuel Police that the path of the jeepney they found on the road \was shown by skid marks which he described as "scratches on the road caused by the iron of the jeep, after its wheel was removed;" (4) His conviction for the crime of Multiple Homicide and Multiple Serious Physical Injuries with Damage to Property thru Reckless Imprudence by the CFI of Tarlac, as a result of the collision, and his commitment to prison and service of his sentence (5) The application of the doctrine of res-ipsa loquitar attesting to the circumstance that the collision occured on the right of way of the Phil. Rabbit Bus.

- The trial court was of the opinion that the proximate cause of the death of Bataclan was not the overturning of the bus, but rather, the fire that burned the bus, including himself and his co-passengers who were unable to leave it; that at the time the fire started, Bataclan, though he must have suffered physical injuries, perhaps serious, was still alive, and so damages were awarded, not for his death, but for the physical injuries suffered by him. - In the public interest the prosecution of said erring driver should be pursued, this, not only as a matter of justice, but for the promotion of the safety of passengers on public utility buses. Note: This case was under the heading but for. I dont know if the italicized phrases are pertinent, but these were the only ones that contained but for.

DISPOSITION In view of the foregoing, with the modification that the damages awarded by the trial court are increased to P6,000 and P800, for the death of Bataclan and for the attorney's fees, respectively. PHILIPPINE RABBIT BUS LINES, INC v. IAC & CASIANO PASCUA, ET AL., 189 SCRA 158 MEDIALDEA/August 30, 1990
NATURE: CERTIORARI FACTS: - This case is for recovery of damages for the 3 jeepney passengers who died as a result of the collision between the Phil. Rabbits bus driven by Tomas delos Reyes and the jeepney driven by Tranquilino Manalo. - Other passengers of the jeepney sustained physical injuries. - It was said that upon reaching a certain barrio, the jeepneys right rear wheel detached which caused it to run in an unbalanced position. -Manalo stepped on the brake, as a result of which, the jeepney which was then running on the eastern lane (its right of way) made a U-turn, invading and eventually stopping on the western lane of the road in such a manner that the jeepney's front faced the south (from where it came) and its rear faced the north (towards where it was going). -The jeepney practically occupied and blocked the greater portion of the western lane, which is the right of way of vehicles coming from the north, among which was Bus No. 753 of Rabbit - Almost at the time when the jeepney made a sudden U-turn and encroached on the western lane of the highway, or after stopping for a couple of minutes, the bus bumped from behind the right rear portion of the jeepney which resulted in the said deaths and injuries. - At the time and in the vicinity of the accident, there were no vehicles following the jeepney, neither were there oncoming vehicles except the bus. The weather condition of that day was fair. - A criminal complaint against the two drivers for Multiple Homicide. - Manalo was eventually convicted and was imprisoned. The case against delos Reyes was dismissed for lack of sufficient evidence. ***As regards the damages.

ART. 1733 ART. 1755 ART. 1759 ART. 1763


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torts & damages


SC: -The principle about "the last clear" chance would call for application in a suit between the owners and drivers of the two colliding vehicles. It does not arise where a passenger demands responsibility from the carrier to enforce its contractual obligations. For it would be inequitable to exempt the negligent driver of the jeepney and its owners on the ground that the other driver was likewise guilty of negligence. (Anuran, et al. v. Buo et al.) -On the presumption that drivers who bump the rear of another vehicle guilty and the cause of the accident, unless contradicted by other evidence: would have been correct were it not for the undisputed fact that the U-turn made by the jeepney was abrupt. Delos Reyes could not have anticipated the sudden U-turn executed by Manalo. ***With regard to the substantial factor test: - The IAC held that . . . It is the rule under the substantial factor test that if the actor's conduct is a substantial factor in bringing about harm to another, the fact that the actor neither foresaw nor should have foreseen the extent of the harm or the manner in which it occurred does not prevent him from being liable (Restatement, Torts, 2d). Here, We find defendant bus running at a fast speed when the accident occurred and did not even make the slightest effort to avoid the accident, . . . . The bus driver's conduct is thus a substantial factor in bringing about harm to the passengers of the jeepney, not only because he was driving fast and did not even attempt to avoid the mishap but also because it was the bus which was the physical force which brought about the injury and death to the passengers of the jeepney. -The speed of the bus was even calculated by the IAC. But the SC was not convinced. It cannot be said that the bus was travelling at a fast speed when the accident occurred because the speed of 80 to 90 kilometers per hour, assuming such calculation to be correct, is yet within the speed limit allowed in highways. - Delos Reyes cannot be faulted for not having avoided the collision because as was shown, the jeepney left a skid mark of about 45 meters, measured from the time its right rear wheel was detached up to the point of collision. - Delos Reyes admitted that he was running more or less 50 kph at the time of the accident. Using this speed, delos Reyes covered the distance of 45 meters in 3.24 seconds. If We adopt the speed of 80 kilometers per hour, delos Reyes would have covered that distance in only 2.025 seconds. Verily, he had little time to react to the situation. - To require delos Reyes to avoid the collision is to ask too much from him. Aside from the time element involved, there were no options available to him. - Also, It was shown by the pictures that driver delos Reyes veered his Rabbit bus to the right attempt to avoid hitting the Mangune's jeepney. That it was not successful in fully clearing the Mangune jeepney as its (Rabbit's) left front hit said jeepney must have been due to limitations of space and time. - That delos Reyes of the Rabbit bus could also have swerved to its left (eastern lane) to avoid bumping the Mangune jeepney which was then on the western lane: Under such a situation, he would run the greater risk of running smack in the Mangune jeepney either head on or broadside as the jeepney then was abruptly making a U-turn. -SC: The proximate cause of the accident was the negligence of Manalo and spouses Mangune and Carreon. They all failed to exercise the precautions that are needed precisely pro hac vice.

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toward which Dionisio's car was proceeding), facing the oncoming traffic. It was parked askew (not parallel to the street curb) in such a manner as to stick out onto the street, partly blocking the way of oncoming traffic. There were no lights or any so-called "early warning" reflector devices set anywhere near the dump truck, front or rear. - The dump truck had earlier that evening been driven home by petitioner Armando U. Carbonel, its regular driver, with the permission of his employer Phoenix, in view of work scheduled to be carried out early the following morning. - Dionisio claimed that he tried to avoid a collision by swerving his car to the left but it was too late and his car smashed into the dump truck. - As a result of the collision, Dionisio suffered some physical injuries including some permanent facial scars, a "nervous breakdown" and loss of two gold bridge dentures. - Trial court ruled in favor of Dionisio. IAC affirmed the lower courts ruling, with modification on award of damages. Petitionerscomments - the proximate cause of Dionisio's injuries was his own recklessness in driving fast at the time of the accident, while under the influence of liquor, without his headlights on and without a curfew pass. - if there was negligence in the manner in which the dump truck was parked, that negligence was merely a "passive and static condition" and that private respondent Dionisio's recklessness constituted an intervening, efficient cause determinative of the accident and the injuries he sustained. (NOTE: this was the contention of petitioners which SC noted in is decision) Private respondents comments - the legal and proximate cause of his injuries was the negligent manner in which Carbonel had parked the dump truck entrusted to him by his employer Phoenix Issue: WON the proximate cause of the accident was Dionisios negligence (driving faster than he should have, and without headlights) or the negligence of the driver in parking the truck. Held: - it is the drivers negligence. (see previous digest) - ON CAUSE v CONDITION (under IV A 3c, page 5 of outline) - petitioners' arguments are drawn from a reading of some of the older cases in various jurisdictions in the United States. These arguments, however, do not have any validity in this jurisdiction. - Even in the United States, the distinctions between" cause" and "condition" have already been "almost entirely discredited." Professors Prosser and Keeton make this quite clear: Many courts have sought to distinguish between the active "cause" of the harm and the existing "conditions" upon which that cause operated. If the defendant has created only a passive static condition which made the damage possible, the defendant is said not to be liable. But so far as the fact of causation is concerned, in the sense of necessary antecedents which have played an important part in producing the result, it is quite impossible to distinguish between active forces and passive situations, particularly since, as is invariably the case the latter (is) the result of other active forces which have gone before. The defendant who spills gasoline about the premises creates a

- In culpa contractual, the moment a passenger dies or is injured, the carrier is presumed to have been at fault or to have acted negligently, and this disputable presumption may only be overcome by evidence that he had observed extra-ordinary diligence as prescribed in Articles 1733, 1755 and 1756 of the New Civil Code 2 or that the death or injury of the passenger was due to a fortuitous event 3 (Lasam v. Smith, Jr., 45 Phil. 657). - To escape liability, defendants Mangune and Carreon offered to show thru their witness Natalio Navarro, an alleged mechanic, that he periodically checks and maintains the jeepney of said defendants, the last on Dec. 23, the day before the collision, which included the tightening of the bolts. This notwithstanding the right rear wheel of the vehicle was detached while in transit. As to the cause thereof no evidence was offered. Said defendant did not even attempt to explain, much less establish, it to be one caused by a caso fortuito. . . . -In any event, "[i]n an action for damages against the carrier for his failure to safely carry his passenger to his destination, an accident caused either by defects in the automobile or through the negligence of its driver, is not a caso fortuito which would avoid the carriers liability for damages (Son v. Cebu Autobus Company, 94 Phil. 892 citing Lasam, et al. v. Smith, Jr., 45 Phil. 657; Necesito, etc. v. Paras, et al., 104 Phil. 75). ***On the sole liability of the Jeepney Owners (excluding Manalo) -the contract of carriage is between the carrier and the passenger, and in the event of contractual liability, the carrier is exclusively responsible therefore to the passenger, even if such breach be due to the negligence of his driver (Viluan v. CA, et al., April 29, 1966, 16 SCRA 742). - if the driver is to be held jointly and severally liable with the carrier, that would make the carrier's liability personal, contradictory to the explicit provision of A 2181 of the NCC. DISPOSITION: TC S DECISION WAS REINSTATED and AFFIRMED BUT MODIFICATION THAT ONLY THE COUPLE AND THE FILRITERS GUARANTY ASSURANCE CORP. INC WERE LIABLE. AFFIRMED TOO THE AMOUNT OF DAMAGES BUT MODIFIED THE INDEMNITY FOR LOSS OF LIFE FROM 3K (AS PER A1746 TO A2206 NCC) TO 30K.

PHOENIX CONSTRUCTION INC v IAC (DIONISIO) 148 SCRA 353 FELICIANO; Mar 10, 1987
Nature: Petition to review the decision of the IAC Facts: - at about 1:30 am on November 15 1975, Leonardo Dionisio was on his way home from a cocktails-and-dinner meeting with his boss. Dionisio had taken "a shot or two" of liquor. - Dionisio was driving his Volkswagen car and had just crossed an intersection when his car headlights (in his allegation) suddenly failed. He switched his headlights on "bright" and saw a Ford dump truck about 21/2meters away from his car. - The dump truck, owned by and registered in the name of Phoenix Construction Inc. ("Phoenix"), was parked on the right hand side of the street (i.e., on the right hand side of a person facing in the same direction

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"condition," but the act may be culpable because of the danger of fire. When a spark ignites the gasoline, the condition has done quite as much to bring about the fire as the spark; and since that is the very risk which the defendant has created, the defendant will not escape responsibility. Even the lapse of a considerable time during which the "condition" remains static will not necessarily affect liability; one who digs a trench in the highway may still be liable to another who falls into it a month afterward. "Cause" and "condition" still find occasional mention in the decisions; but the distinction is now almost entirely discredited. So far as it has any validity at all, it must refer to the type of case where the forces set in operation by the defendant have come to rest in a position of apparent safety, and some new force intervenes. But even in such cases, it is not the distinction between "cause" and "condition" which is important, but the nature of the risk and the character of the intervening cause." - the truck driver's negligence, far from being a "passive and static condition", was an indispensable and efficient cause. The collision would not have occurred had the dump truck not been parked askew without any warning lights or reflector devices. The improper parking of the dump truck created an unreasonable risk of injury for anyone driving down that street and for having so created this risk, the truck driver must be held responsible. Dionisio's negligence, although later in point of time than the truck driver's negligence and therefore closer to the accident, was not an efficient intervening or independent cause. What the petitioners describe as an "intervening cause" was only a foreseeable consequence of the risk created by the truck drivers negligence

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Yes. - Manila Railroads defense is not a bar to recovery by the other plaintiffs. - There was no proof that Rodrigueza unlawfully intruded upon companys property. His house was there before the railroad companys property. He may be at risk for fire, but should not bear loss if the fire resulted from the companys negligence. - The PROXIMATE AND ONLY CAUSE of the damage was the negligent act of the company. That Rodriguezas house was near was an ANTECEDENT CONDITION but that cant be imputed to him as CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENCE because that condition was not created by himself and because his house remained by the toleration and consent of company and because even if the house was improperly there, company had no right to negligently destroy it. The company could have removed the house through its power of eminent domain.

MANILA ELECTRIC v REMOQUILLO 99 PHIL 117 MONTEMAYOR; May 18, 1956


NATURE Review by certiorari of a CA decision FACTS - Efren Magno went to his stepbrothers 3-story house to fix a leaking media agua, (downspout). He climbed up to the media agua which was just below the 3rd floor window and stood on it to receive a galvanized iron sheet through the said window. After grabbing hold of the sheet, he turned around and a portion of the iron sheet he was holding came into contact with an electric wire of Manila Electric Company (the Company) strung 2.5 ft parallel to the edge of the media agua, electrocuting him and killing him. - His widow and children filed a suit to recover damages from the company and the TC rendered judgment in their favor. The Company appealed to the CA, which affirmed the judgment. It is this CA decision the Company now seeks to appeal. ISSUE WON the Companys negligence in the installation and maintenance of its wires was the proximate cause of the death HELD

No. It merely provided the condition from which the cause arose (it set the stage for the cause of the injury to occur). Ratio A prior and remote cause (which furnishes the condition or gives rise to the occasion by which an injury was made possible) cannot be the basis of an action if a distinct, successive, unrelated and efficient cause of the injury intervenes between such prior and remote cause and the injury. If no danger existed in the condition except because of the independent cause, such condition was not the proximate cause. And if an independent negligent act or defective condition sets into operation the circumstances which result in injury because of the prior defective condition, such subsequent act or condition is the proximate cause. Reasoning We fail to see how the Company could be held guilty of negligence or as lacking in due diligence. To us it is clear that the principal and proximate cause of the electrocution was not the electric wire, evidently a remote cause, but rather the reckless and negligent act of Magno in turning around and swinging the galvanized iron sheet without taking any precaution, such as looking back toward the street and at the wire to avoid its contacting said iron sheet, considering the latter's length of 6 feet. - The real cause of the accident or death was the reckless or negligent act of Magno himself. When he was called by his stepbrother to repair the media agua just below the third story window, it is to be presumed that due to his age and experience he was qualified to do so. Perhaps he was a tinsmith or carpenter and had had training and experience for the job. So, he could not have been entirely a stranger to electric wires and the danger lurking in them. But unfortunately, in the instant case, his training and experience failed him, and forgetting where he was standing, holding the 6-ft iron sheet with both hands and at arms length, evidently without looking, and throwing all prudence and discretion to the winds, he turned around swinging his arms with the motion of his body, thereby causing his own electrocution. Disposition CA decision reversed. Complaint against company dismissed

MCKEE v IAC, TAYAG 211 SCRA 517 DAVIDE; July 16, 1992
NATURE Appeal from decision of the IAC FACTS - A head-on-collision took place between a cargo truck owned by private respondents, and driven by Ruben Galang, and a Ford Escort car driven by Jose Koh. The collision resulted in the deaths of Jose Koh, Kim Koh McKee and Loida Bondoc, and physical injuries to George Koh McKee, Christopher Koh McKee and Araceli Koh McKee, all passengers of the Ford Escort. - When the northbound Ford Escort was about 10 meters away from the southern approach of the bridge, two boys suddenly darted from the right side of the road and into the lane of the car. Jose Koh blew the horn of the car, swerved to the left and entered the lane of the truck; he then switched on the headlights of the car, applied the brakes and thereafter attempted to return to his lane. Before he could do so, his car collided with the truck. The collision occurred in the lane of the truck, which was the opposite lane, on the said bridge. - Two civil cases were filed on Jan 31, 1977. - On 1 March 1977, an Information charging Ruben Galang with the crime of "Reckless Imprudence Resulting in Multiple Homicide and Physical Injuries and Damage to Property" was filed with the trial court. - Judge Capulong found Galang guilty of the criminal charge and ordered him to pay damages. Galang appealed to IAC. IAC affirmed decision. - Judge Castaneda dismissed the 2 civil cases and awarded private respondents moral damages and exemplary damages, and attorneys fee. Petitioners appealed to IAC. In its consolidated decision of the civil cases, it reversed the ruling of the trial court and ordered the defendants to pay damages. The decision is anchored principally on the findings that it was Galang's inattentiveness or reckless imprudence which caused the accident. The appellate court further said that the law presumes negligence on the part of the defendants, as employers of Galang, in the selection and supervision of the latter; it was further asserted that these defendants did not allege in their Answers the defense of having exercised the diligence of a good father of a family in selecting and supervising the said employee. - In an MFR, the decision for the consolidated civil cases was reversed. Hence this petition.

RODRIGUEZA V. MANILA RAILROAD COMPANY STREET; November 19, 1921


NATURE Appeal from judgment of CFI FACTS Rodrigueza et al seek damages fr fire kindled by sparks fr a locomotive engine. The fire was communicated to four houses nearby. All of these houses were of light construction, except that of Rodrigueza which was of strong materials. Plaintiffs say that the company failed to supervise their employees properly and was negligent in allowing locomotive to operate without smokestack protection for arresting sparks. They also say that the sparks were produced by an inferior fuel used by the company Bataan coal. Defense said Rodiguezas house stood partly within limits of land owned by company. Rodrigueza didnt mind the warnings from the company. His houses materials included nipa and cogon, this indicates contributory negligence on his part. Trial judge decided against Manila Railroad, which appealed. ISSUE WON damage was caused by Rodriguezas contributory negligence HELD

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ISSUES WON respondent Court's findings in its challenged resolution are supported by evidence or are based on mere speculations, conjectures and presumptions. HELD YES - Findings of facts of the trial courts and the Court of Appeals may be set aside when such findings are not supported by the evidence or when the trial court failed to consider the material facts which would have led to a conclusion different from what was stated in its judgment. - The respondent Court held that the fact that the car improperly invaded the lane of the truck and that the collision occurred in said lane gave rise to the presumption that the driver of the car, Jose Koh, was negligent. On the basis of this presumed negligence, IAC immediately concluded that it was Jose Koh's negligence that was the immediate and proximate cause of the collision. This is an unwarranted deduction as the evidence for the petitioners convincingly shows that the car swerved into the truck's lane because as it approached the southern end of the bridge, two boys darted across the road from the right sidewalk into the lane of the car. - Negligence is the omission to do something which a reasonable man, guided by those considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs, would do, or the doing of something which a prudent and reasonable man would not do - The test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular case: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. - Using the test, no negligence can be imputed to Jose Koh. Any reasonable and ordinary prudent man would have tried to avoid running over the two boys by swerving the car away from where they were even if this would mean entering the opposite lane. - Moreover, under what is known as the emergency rule, "one who suddenly finds himself in a place of danger, and is required to act without time to consider the best means that may be adopted to avoid the impending danger, is not guilty of negligence, if he fails to adopt what subsequently and upon reflection may appear to have been a better method, unless the emergency in which he finds himself is brought about by his own negligence. - Assuming, arguendo that Jose Koh is negligent, it cannot be said that his negligence was the proximate cause of the collision. Proximate cause has been defined as: that cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result would not have occurred; the proximate legal cause is that acting first and producing the injury, either immediately or by setting other events in motion, all constituting a natural and continuous chain of events, each having a close causal connection with its immediate predecessor, the final event in the chain immediately effecting the injury as a natural and probable result of the cause which first acted, under such circumstances that the person responsible for the first event should, as an ordinary prudent and intelligent person, have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of his act or default that an injury to some person might probably result therefrom.

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spectacle of two judges appreciating, according to their respective orientation, perception and perhaps even prejudice, the same facts differently, and thereafter rendering conflicting decisions. Such was what happened in this case. - The responsibility arising from fault or negligence in a quasi-delict is entirely separate and distinct from the civil liability arising from negligence under the Penal Code. In the case of independent civil actions under the new Civil Code, the result of the criminal case, whether acquittal or conviction, would be entirely irrelevant to the civil action. What remains to be the most important consideration as to why the decision in the criminal case should not be considered in this appeal is the fact that private respondents were not parties therein. Dispositive Petition granted. Assailed decision set aside while its original is REINSTATED, subject to the modification that the indemnity for death is increased from P12,000.00 to P50,000.00 each for the death of Jose Koh and Kim Koh McKee

Although it may be said that the act of Jose Koh, if at all negligent, was the initial act in the chain of events, it cannot be said that the same caused the eventual injuries and deaths because of the occurrence of a sufficient

intervening event, the negligent act of the truck driver, which was the actual cause of the tragedy. The entry of the car into the lane of the truck would not have resulted in the collision had the latter heeded the emergency signals given by the former to slow down and give the car an opportunity to go back into its proper lane. Instead of slowing down and swerving to the far right of the road, which was the proper precautionary measure under the given circumstances, the truck driver continued at full speed towards the car. - The truck driver's negligence is apparent in the records. He himself said that his truck was running at 30 miles (48 km) per hour along the bridge while the maximum speed allowed by law on a bridge is only 30 kph. Under Article 2185 of the Civil Code, a person driving a vehicle is presumed negligent if at the time of the mishap, he was violating any traffic regulation. - Even if Jose Koh was indeed negligent, the doctrine of last clear chance finds application here. Last clear chance is a doctrine in the law of torts which states that the contributory negligence of the party injured will not defeat the claim for damages if it is shown that the defendant might, by the exercise of reasonable care and prudence, have avoided the consequences of the negligence of the injured party. In such cases, the person who had the last clear chance to avoid the mishap is considered in law solely responsible for the consequences thereof. - Last clear chance: The doctrine is that the negligence of the plaintiff does not preclude a recovery for the negligence of the defendant where it appears that the defendant, by exercising reasonable care and prudence, might have avoided injurious consequences to the plaintiff notwithstanding the plaintiff's negligence. The doctrine of last clear chance means that even though a person's own acts may have placed him in a position of peril, and an injury results, the injured person is entitled to recovery. a person who has the last clear chance or opportunity of avoiding an accident, notwithstanding the negligent acts of his opponent or that of a third person imputed to the opponent is considered in law solely responsible for the consequences of the accident. The practical import of the doctrine is that a negligent defendant is held liable to a negligent plaintiff, or even to a plaintiff who has been grossly negligent in placing himself in peril, if he, aware of the plaintiff's peril, or according to some authorities, should have been aware of it in the reasonable exercise of due care, had in fact an opportunity later than that of the plaintiff to avoid an accident. - As employers of the truck driver, the private respondents are, under Article 2180 of the Civil Code, directly and primarily liable for the resulting damages. The presumption that they are negligent flows from the negligence of their employee. That presumption, however, is only juris tantum, not juris et de jure. Their only possible defense is that they exercised all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent the damage. The answers of the private respondents in the civil cases did not interpose this defense. Neither did they attempt to prove it. On the separate civil and criminal actions - The civil cases, which were for the recovery of civil liability arising from a quasi-delict under Article 2176 in relation to Article 2180 of the Civil Code, were filed ahead of criminal case. They were eventually consolidated for joint trial. The records do not indicate any attempt on the part of the parties, and it may therefore be reasonably concluded that none was made, to consolidate criminal case with the civil cases, or vice-versa. - Section 1, Rule 31 of the Rules of Court, which seeks to avoid a multiplicity of suits, guard against oppression and abuse, prevent delays, clear congested dockets to simplify the work of the trial court, or in short, attain justice with the least expense to the parties litigants, would have easily sustained a consolidation, thereby preventing the unseeming, if no ludicrous,

TEAGUE VS. FERNANDEZ 51 SCRA 181 MAKALINTAL; June 4, 1973


FACTS - The Realistic Institute, owned and operated by Mercedes M. Teague, was a vocational school for hair and beauty culture situated on the second floor of the Gil-Armi Building, a two-storey, semi-concrete edifice located at the comer of Quezon Boulevard and Soler Street, Quiapo, Manila. The second floor was unpartitioned, had a total area of about 400 square meters, and although it had only one stairway, of about 1.50 meters in width, it had eight windows, each of which was provided with two fire-escape ladders, and the presence of each of the fire exits was indicated on the wall. - In the afternoon of October 24, 1955, a fire broke out in a store for surplus materials located about ten meters away from the institute. Soler Street lay between that store and the institute. Upon seeing the fire, some of the students in the Realistic Institute shouted 'Fire! Fire!' and thereafter, a panic ensued. Four instructresses and six assistant instructresses of the institute were present and they, together with the registrar, tried to calm down the students, who numbered about 180 at the time, telling them not to be afraid because the Gil-Armi Building would not get burned as it is made of concrete, and that the fire was anyway, across the street. They told the students not to rush out but just to go down the stairway two by two, or to use the fireescapes. The panic, however, could not be subdued and the students kept on rushing and pushing their way through the stairs, thereby causing stampede. No part of the Gil-Armi Building caught fire. But, after the panic was over, four students, including Lourdes Fernandez, sister of plaintiffs, were found dead and several others injured on account of the stampede. - The CFI of Manila found for the defendant and dismissed the case. The plaintiffs appealed to the CA, which by a divided vote of 3 to 2 (a special division of five members having been constituted) rendered a judgment of reversal and sentenced the defendant to pay damages to the plaintiffs in the sum of P11,000, plus interest at the legal rate from the date the complaint was filed. - The CA declared that Teague was negligent and that such negligence was the proximate cause of the death of Lourdes Fernandez. This finding of negligence is based primarily on the fact that the provision of Section 491 of the Revised Ordinances of the City of Manila had not been complied with in

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connection with the construction and use of the Gil-Armi building. This provision reads as follows: "Sec. 491. Fireproof partitions, exits and stairways - All buildings and separate sections of buildings or buildings otherwise known as accessorias having less than three stories, having one or more persons domiciled therein either temporarily or permanently, and all public or quasipublic buildings having less than three stories, such as hospitals, sanitarium, schools, reformatories, places of human detention, assembly halls, clubs, restaurants or panciterias, and the like, shall be provided with at least two unobstructed stairways of not less than one meter and twenty centimeters in width and an inclination of not less than forty degrees from the perpendicular, in case of large buildings more than two stairways shall likewise be provided when required by the chief of the fire department, said stairways shall be placed as far apart as possible." The alleged violation of the ordinance consisted is that the second storey of the building had only one stairway, 1.5 meters wide, instead of two of at least 1.2 meters each, although at the time of the fire the owner of the building had a second stairway under construction. ISSUES 1. WON Section 491 of the Revised Ordinances of the City of Manila refers only to public buildings and hence did not apply to the Gil-Armi building which was of private ownership 2. WON the ordinance devolved upon the owners of the building and therefore it is they and not the petitioner, who is a mere lessee, who should be liable for the violation 3. WON the failure to comply with the requirement of the ordinance was the proximate cause of the death of Lourdes Fernandez HELD 1. NO. Ratio it is not ownership which determines the character of buildings subject to its requirements, but rather the use or the purpose for which a particular building, is utilized. Reasoning Thus the same may be privately owned, but if it is devoted to any one of the purposes mentioned in the ordinance - for instance as a school, which the Realistic Institute precisely was - then the building is within the coverage of the ordinance. Indeed the requirement that such a building should have two (2) separate stairways instead of only one (1) has no relevance or reasonable relation to the fact of ownership, but does have such relation to the use or purpose for which the building is devoted. 2. NO. Reasoning It was the use of the building for school purposes which brought the same within the coverage of the ordinance; and it was the petitioner and not the owners who were responsible for such use. 3. YES. Ratio The violation of a statute or ordinance is not rendered remote as the cause of an injury by the intervention of another agency if the occurrence of the accident, in the manner in which it happened, was the very thing which the statute or ordinance was intended to prevent. Reasoning The proximate legal cause is that acting first and producing the injury, either immediately or by settling other events in motion, all constituting a natural and continuous chain of events, each having a close causal connection with its immediate predecessor, the final event in the chain immediately affecting the injury as a natural and probable result of the cause which first acted, under such circumstances that the person responsible for

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On December 12, 1912, plaintiff was riding on his pony over the Carlatan Bridge, at San Fernando, La Union. Before he had gotten half way across, the defendant approached from the opposite direction in an automobile, going at the rate of about ten or twelve miles per hour. As the defendant neared the bridge he saw the plaintiff and blew his horn to give warning of his approach. He continued his course and after he had taken the bridge, he gave two more successive blasts, as it appeared to him that the man on horseback before him was not observing the rule of the road. The plaintiff saw the automobile coming and heard the warning signals. However, given the novelty of the apparition and the rapidity of the approach, he pulled the pony closely up against the railing on the right side of the bridge instead of going to the left. He did this because he thought he did not have sufficient time to get over to the other side. As the automobile approached, the defendant guided it toward his left, that being the proper side of the road for the machine. In so doing the defendant assumed that the horseman would move to the other side. The pony had not as yet exhibited fright, and the rider had made no sign for the automobile to stop. Seeing that the pony was apparently quiet, the defendant, instead of veering to the right while yet some distance away or slowing down, continued to approach directly toward the horse without diminution of speed. When he had gotten quite near, there being then no possibility of the horse getting across to the other side, the defendant quickly turned his car sufficiently to the right to escape hitting the horse alongside of the railing where it as then standing; but in so doing the automobile passed in such close proximity to the animal that it became frightened and turned its body across the bridge with its head toward the railing. In so doing, it was struck on the hock of the left hind leg by the flange of the car and the limb was broken. The horse fell and its rider was thrown off with some violence. As a result of its injuries the horse died. The plaintiff received contusions which caused temporary unconsciousness and required medical attention for several days. CFI absolved defendant from liability Hence, the appeal

the first event should, as an ordinarily prudent and intelligent person, have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of his act or default that an injury to some person might probably result there from. [Citing Bataclan v Medina] - The petitioner relates the chain of events that resulted in the death of Lourdes Fernandez as follows: (1) violation of ordinance; (2) fire at a neighboring place; (3) shouts of "Fire!, Fire!"; (4) panic in the Institute; (5) stampede; and (6) injuries and death. The violation of the ordinance, it is argued, was only a remote cause, and cannot be the basis of liability since there intervened a number of independent causes which produced the injury complained of. - A prior and remote cause cannot be made the basis of an action if such remote cause did nothing more than furnish the condition or give rise to the occasion by which the injury was made possible, if there intervened between such prior or remote cause and the injury a distinct, successive, unrelated, and efficient cause of the injury, even though such injury would not have happened but for such condition or occasion. If no danger existed in the condition except because of the independent cause, such condition was not the proximate cause. And if an independent negligent act or defective condition sets into operation the circumstances which result in injury because of the prior defective condition, such subsequent act or condition is the proximate cause. [Citing MERALCO v Remoquillo] - According to the petitioner "the events of fire, panic and stampede were independent causes with no causal connection at all with the violation of the ordinance." The weakness in the argument springs from a faulty juxtaposition of the events which formed a chain and resulted in the injury. It is true that the petitioner's non-compliance with the ordinance in question was ahead of and prior to the other events in point of time, in the sense that it was coetaneous with its occupancy of the building. But the violation was a continuing one, since the ordinance was a measure of safety designed to prevent a specific situation which would pose a danger to the occupants of the building. That situation was undue overcrowding in case it should become necessary to evacuate the building, which, it could be reasonably foreseen, was bound to happen under emergency conditions if there was only one stairway available. It is true that in this particular case there would have been no overcrowding in the single stairway if there had not been a fire in the neighborhood which caused the students to panic and rush headlong for the stairs in order to go down. But it was precisely such contingencies or events that the authors of the ordinance had in mind, for under normal conditions one stairway would be adequate for the occupants of the building. - To consider the violation of the ordinance as the proximate cause of the injury does not portray the situation in its true perspective; it would be more accurate to say that the overcrowding at the stairway was the proximate cause and that it was precisely what the ordinance intended to prevent by requiring that there be two stairways instead of only one. Under the doctrine of the cases cited by the respondents, the principle of proximate cause applies to such violation. Dispositive Decision appealed from is affirmed.

ISSUE WON the defendant, in maneuvering his car in the manner above described, was guilty of negligence that would give rise to a civil obligation to repair the damage done Ratio: The person who has the last fair chance to avoid the impending harm and fails to do so is chargeable with the consequences, without reference to the prior negligence of the other part. HELD Yes. As the defendant started across the bridge, he had the right to assume that the horse and the rider would pass over to the proper side; but as he moved toward the center of the bridge it was demonstrated to his eyes that this would not be done; and he must in a moment have

PICART V SMITH STREET; March 15, 1918


NATURE Appeal from a judgment of the CFI of La Union FACTS

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perceived that it was too late for the horse to cross with safety in front of the moving vehicle. In the nature of things this change of situation occurred while the automobile was yet some distance away; and from this moment it was no longer within the power of the plaintiff to escape being run down by going to a place of greater safety. The control of the situation had then passed entirely to the defendant; and it was his duty either to bring his car to an immediate stop or, seeing that there were no other persons on the bridge, to take the other side and pass sufficiently far away from the horse to avoid the danger of collision. The defendant ran straight on until he was almost upon the horse. He was, the court thinks, deceived into doing this by the fact that the horse had not yet exhibited fright. But in view of the known nature of horses, there was an appreciable risk that, if the animal in question was unacquainted with automobiles, he might get excited and jump under the conditions which here confronted him. When the defendant exposed the horse and rider to this danger, he was, in our opinion, negligent in the eye of the law. The test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular case may be stated as follows: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. The law here in effect adopts the standard supposed to be supplied by the imaginary conduct of the discreet paterfamilias of the Roman law. The existence of negligence in a given case is not determined by reference to the personal judgment of the actor in the situation before him. The law considers what would be reckless, blameworthy, or negligent in the man of ordinary intelligence and prudence and determines liability by that. The question as to what would constitute the conduct of a prudent man in a given situation must of course be always determined in the light of human experience and in view of the facts involved in the particular case. Could a prudent man, in the case under consideration, foresee harm as a result of the course actually pursued? If so, it was the duty of the actor to take precautions to guard against that harm. Reasonable foresight of harm, followed by ignoring of the suggestion born of this prevision, is always necessary before negligence can be held to exist. Stated in these terms, the proper criterion for determining the existence of negligence in a given case is this: Conduct is said to be negligent when a prudent man in the position of the tortfeasor would have foreseen that an effect harmful to another was sufficiently probable to warrant his foregoing conduct or guarding against its consequences. Applying this test to the conduct of the defendant in the present case, negligence is clearly established. A prudent man, placed in the position of the defendant, would have recognized that the course which he was pursuing was fraught with risk, and would therefore have foreseen harm to the horse and the rider as reasonable consequence of that course. Under these circumstances the law imposed on the defendant the duty to guard against the threatened harm. The plaintiff himself was not free from fault, for he was guilty of antecedent negligence in planting himself on the wrong side of the road. It will be noted however, that the negligent acts of the two parties were not contemporaneous, since the negligence of the defendant

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opponent is considered in law solely responsible for the consequences of the accident (Sangco). A negligent defendant is held liable to a negligent plaintiff, or even to a plaintiff who has been grossly negligent in placing himself in peril, if he, aware of the plaintiff's peril, or according to some authorities, should have been aware of it in the reasonable exercise of due case, had in fact an opportunity later than that of the plaintiff to avoid an accident (Am. Jur). As against 3rd persons, a negligent actor cant defend by saying that another had negligently failed to take action which would have avoided injury. Disposition: Petition GRANTED. Defendants Del Pilar and Montesiano ordered to pay damages with other defendants

succeeded the negligence of the plaintiff by an appreciable interval. Under these circumstances the law is that the person who has the last fair chance to avoid the impending harm and fails to do so is chargeable with the consequences, without reference to the prior negligence of the other party. Dispositive: Appealed decision is reversed.

BUSTAMANTE V CA (DEL PILAR AND MONTESIANO) 193 SCRA 603 MEDIALDEA; February 6, 1991
NATURE: petition for certiorari to review decision of CA FACTS: a truck and a passenger bus sideswept each other, causing the deaths of the passengers of the bus. This is the way the collision happened: The bus, driven by Susulin, was traversing an inclined road when the driver saw from 30 meters away an approaching truck (driven by Montesiano), going very fast and the front wheels wiggling. The bus driver also observed that the truck was heading towards his lane. Not minding this circumstance due to his belief that the truck driver was merely joking, Susulin shifted from 4th to 3rd gear in order to give more power and speed to the bus, which was ascending the inclined part of the road, in order to overtake a Kubota hand tractor being pushed by a person along the shoulder of the highway. While the bus was in the process of overtaking or passing the hand tractor and the truck was approaching the bus, the two vehicles sideswiped each other at each other's left side. The heirs of the victims filed for damages. The RTC awarded damages, saying that the negligent acts of both drivers were the cause of the accident, thus their liability must be solidary. The driver and owner of the truck appealed to the CA, which was denied at first, but was granted on MFR, absolving the defendants based on the doctrine of last clear chance, saying that the bus driver had the last clear chance to avoid the accident, and that his negligence was the proximate cause of the same. ISSUES: 1. WON the CA was correct in absolving the driver and owner of the truck (answered by WON CA correctly applied the doctrine of last clear chance) HELD: 1. NO Ratio: The doctrine of last clear chance applies only between the negligent parties. It does not apply in a case wherein a victim (who is an outsider to the cause of the accident) demands liability from the negligent parties. Reasoning: The doctrine of last clear chance, stated broadly, is that the negligence of the plaintiff does not preclude a recovery for the negligence of the defendant where it appears that the defendant, by exercising reasonable care and prudence, might have avoided injurious consequences to the plaintiff notwithstanding the plaintiffs negligence. In other words, the doctrine of last clear chance means that even though a person's own acts may have placed him in a position of peril, and an injury results, the injured person is entitled to recovery. As the doctrine is usually stated, a person who has the last clear chance or opportunity of avoiding an accident, notwithstanding the negligent acts of his opponent or that of a third person imputed to the

PHOENIX CONSTRUCTION INC V IAC (DIONISIO) 148 SCRA 353 FELICIANO; March 10, 1987
NATURE PETITION for review of the decision of the IAC FACTS - 130AM 15 November 1975 - Leonardo Dionisio, driving his Volkswagen car, was on his way home to Makati from a cocktails-and-dinner meeting with his boss where had taken "a shot or two" of liquor. Crossing the intersection of General Lacuna and General Santos Streets at Bangkal, Makati, not far from his home, when his car headlights (in his allegation) suddenly failed. He switched his headlights on "bright" and thereupon he saw a Ford dump truck looming some 21/2meters away from his car. The dump truck, owned and registered by Phoenix Construction Inc. was parked askew (partly blocking the way of oncoming traffic) on the right hand side of General Lacuna Street facing the oncoming traffic. There were no lights nor any so-called "early warning" reflector devices set anywhere near the dump truck. The dump truck had earlier that evening been driven home by Carbonel, its regular driver. Dionisio claimed that he tried to avoid a collision by swerving his car to the left but it was too late and his car smashed into the dump truck. As a result of the collision, Dionisio suffered some physical injuries including some permanent facial scars, a "nervous breakdown" and loss of two gold bridge dentures. - Dionisio commenced an action for damages claiming that the legal and proximate cause of his injuries was the negligent manner in which Carbonel had parked the dump truck. Phoenix and Carbonel countered that the proximate cause of Dionisio's injuries was his own recklessness in driving fast at the time of the accident, while under the influence of liquor, without his headlights on and without a curfew pass. Phoenix also sought to establish that it had exercised due care in the selection and supervision of the dump truck driver. - CFI: in favor of Dionisio - IAC: affirmed TC but modified amounts ISSUE (obiter) WON last clear chance doctrine should be applied therefore exculpating Phoenix from paying any damages HELD NO

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- We hold that private respondent Dionisio's negligence was "only contributory," that the "immediate and proximate cause" of the injury remained the truck driver's "lack of due care" and that consequently respondent Dionisio may recover damages though such damages are subject to mitigation by the courts (Article 2179, Civil Code of the Philippines). Obiter - Phoenix and Carbonel also ask us to apply what they refer to as the "last clear chance" doctrine. The theory here of petitioners is that while the petitioner truck driver was negligent, private respondent Dionisio had the "last clear chance" of avoiding the accident and hence his injuries, and that Dionisio having failed to take that "last clear chance" must bear his own injuries alone. The last clear chance doctrine of the common law was imported into our jurisdiction by Picart vs. Smith but it is a matter for debate whether, or to what extent, it has found its way into the Civil Code of the Philippines. The historical function of that doctrine in the common law was to mitigate the harshness of another common law doctrine or rule-that of contributory negligence. The common law rule of contributory negligence prevented any recovery at all by a plaintiff who was also negligent, even if the plaintiff's negligence was relatively minor as compared with the wrongful act or omission of the defendant. The common law notion of last clear chance permitted courts to grant recovery to a plaintiff who had also been negligent provided that the defendant had the last clear chance to avoid the casualty and failed to do so. Accordingly, it is difficult to see what role, if any, the common law last clear chance doctrine has to play in a jurisdiction where the common law concept of contributory negligence as an absolute bar to recovery by the plaintiff, has itself been rejected, as it has been in A2179 CC - Is there perhaps a general concept of "last clear chance" that may be extracted from its common law matrix and utilized as a general rule in negligence cases in a civil law jurisdiction like ours? We do not believe so. Under A2179, the task of a court, in technical terms, is to determine whose negligence-the plaintiff's or the defendant's-was the legal or proximate cause of the injury. That task is not simply or even primarily an exercise in chronology or physics, as the petitioners seem to imply by the use of terms like "last" or "intervening" or "immediate." The relative location in the continuum of time of the plaintiff's and the defendant's negligent acts or omissions, is only one of the relevant factors that may be taken into account. Of more fundamental importance are the nature of the negligent act or omission of each party and the character and gravity of the risks created by such act or omission for the rest of the community. The petitioners urge that the truck driver (and therefore his employer) should be absolved from responsibility for his own prior negligence because the unfortunate plaintiff failed to act with that increased diligence which had become necessary to avoid the peril precisely created by the truck driver's own wrongful act or omission, To accept this proposition is to come too close to wiping out the fundamental principle of law that a man must respond for the forseeable consequences of his own negligent act or omission. Our law on quasi-delicts seeks to reduce the risks and burdens of living in society and to allocate them among the members of society. To accept the petitioners' proposition must tend to weaken the very bonds of society. Disposition CA decision is modified by reducing the aggregate amount of compensatory damages, loss of expected income and moral damages Dionisio is entitled to by 20% of such amount Nature: Petition to review decision of CA

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private respondent's. Held: It was the negligence of Ms. Azucena Mabayad, coupled by the negligence of the petitioner bank in the selection and supervision of its bank teller, which was the proximate cause of the loss suffered by the private respondent. - There are three elements of a quasi-delict: (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. - Negligence is the omission to do something which a reasonable man, guided by those considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs, would do, or the doing of something which a prudent and reasonable man would do. - Picart v. Smith. The test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular case: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would have used in the same situation? If not, then he is guilty of negligence. The law here in effect adopts the standard supposed to be supplied by the imaginary conduct of the discreet paterfamilias of the Roman law. The existence of negligence in a given case is not determined by reference to the personal judgment of the actor in the situation before him. The law considers what would be reckless, blameworthy, or negligent in the man of ordinary intelligence and prudence and determines liability by that. - the bank's teller, Ms. Azucena Mabayad, was negligent in validating, officially stamping and signing all the deposit slips prepared and presented by Ms. Yabut, despite the glaring fact that the duplicate copy was not completely accomplished contrary to the self-imposed procedure of the bank with respect to the proper validation of deposit slips, original or duplicate. - Negligence here lies not only on the part of Ms. Mabayad but also on the part of the bank itself in its lackadaisical selection and supervision of Ms. Mabayad. - Proximate cause is determined on the facts of each case upon mixed considerations of logic, common sense, policy and precedent. Proximate cause is "that cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result would not have occurred. . . ." In this case, absent the act of Ms. Mabayad in negligently validating the incomplete duplicate copy of the deposit slip, Ms. Irene Yabut would not have the facility with which to perpetrate her fraudulent scheme with impunity. - Furthermore, under the doctrine of "last clear chance" (also referred to, at times as "supervening negligence" or as "discovered peril"), petitioner bank was indeed the culpable party. This doctrine, in essence, states that where both parties are negligent, but the negligent act of one is appreciably later in time than that of the other, or when it is impossible to determine whose fault or negligence should be attributed to the incident, the one who had the last clear opportunity to avoid the impending harm and failed to do so is chargeable with the consequences thereof. Stated differently, the rule would also mean that an antecedent negligence of a person does not preclude the recovery of damages for the supervening negligence of, or bar a defense against liability sought by another, if the latter, who had the last fair chance, could have avoided the impending harm by the exercise of due diligence. Here, assuming that private respondent RMC was negligent in entrusting cash to a dishonest employee, thus providing the latter with the opportunity to defraud the company, as advanced by the petitioner, yet it cannot be denied

Facts: - Rommel's Marketing Corporation (RMC), represented by its President and General Manager Romeo Lipana, filed a complaint to recover from the former Philippine Bank of Commerce (PBC), now absorbed by the Philippine Commercial International Bank, P304, 979.74 representing various deposits RMC made in its current account with said bank. The amount was not credited to RMCs account but was instead deposited to the account of one Bienvenido Cotas. - RMC maintained two separate current accounts with the Pasig Branch of PBC in connection with its business of selling appliances. - From May 5, 1975 to July 16, 1976, petitioner Romeo Lipana claims to have entrusted RMC funds in the form of cash totalling P304,979.74 to his secretary, Irene Yabut, for the purpose of depositing said funds in the current accounts of RMC with PBC. It turned out, however, that these deposits, on all occasions, were not credited to RMC's account but were instead deposited to Account No. 53-01734-7 of Yabut's husband, Bienvenido Cotas who likewise maintains an account with the same bank. - During this period, petitioner bank had been regularly furnishing private respondent with monthly statements showing its current accounts balances. Unfortunately, it had never been the practice of Romeo Lipana to check these monthly statements of account reposing complete trust and confidence on petitioner bank. -Irene Yabut would accomplish two copies of the deposit slip, an original and a duplicate. The original showed the name of her husband as depositor and his current account number. On the duplicate copy was written the account number of her husband but the name of the account holder was left blank. PBC's teller, Azucena Mabayad, would, however, validate and stamp both the original and the duplicate of these deposit slips retaining only the original copy despite the lack of information on the duplicate slip. The second copy was kept by Irene Yabut allegedly for record purposes. After validation, Yabut would then fill up the name of RMC in the space left blank in the duplicate copy and change the account number written thereon, which is that of her husband's, and make it appear to be RMC's account number. With the daily remittance records also prepared by Ms. Yabut and submitted to private respondent RMC together with the validated duplicate slips with the latter's name and account number, she made her company believe that all the while the amounts she deposited were being credited to its account when, in truth and in fact, they were being deposited by her and credited by the petitioner bank in the account of Cotas. - Upon discovery of the loss of its funds, RMC demanded from petitioner bank the return of its money, but as its demand went unheeded, it filed a collection suit before RTC Pasig, which found petitioner bank negligent and ordered the bank and Mabayad to pay RMC jointly and severally P304,979.72, plus damages, attornets fees and costs of suit. - CA affirmed, but modified the award of damages. Issue: Whether the proximate cause of the loss, to the tune of P304,979.74, suffered by the private respondent RMC is petitioner bank's negligence or

PHILIPPINE BANK OF COMMERCE v CA (LIPANA) 269 SCRA 695

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that the petitioner bank, thru its teller, had the last clear opportunity to avert the injury incurred by its client, simply by faithfully observing their selfimposed validation procedure. - While it is true that had private respondent checked the monthly statements of account sent by the petitioner bank to RMC, the latter would have discovered the loss early on, such cannot be used by the petitioners to escape liability. This omission on the part of the private respondent does not change the fact that were it not for the wanton and reckless negligence of the petitioners' employee in validating the incomplete duplicate deposit slips presented by Ms. Irene Yabut, the loss would not have occurred. Considering, however, that the fraud was committed in a span of more than one (1) year covering various deposits, common human experience dictates that the same would not have been possible without any form of collusion between Ms. Yabut and bank teller Mabayad. Ms. Mabayad was negligent in the performance of her duties as bank teller nonetheless. - it cannot be denied that private respondent was likewise negligent in not checking its monthly statements of account. Had it done so, the company would have been alerted to the series of frauds being committed against RMC by its secretary. The damage would definitely not have ballooned to such an amount if only RMC, particularly Romeo Lipana, had exercised even a little vigilance in their financial affairs. This omission by RMC amounts to contributory negligence which shall mitigate the damages that may be awarded to the private respondent under Article 2179 of the New Civil Code Disposition CA decision modified. The demands of substantial justice are satisfied by allocating the damage on a 60-40 ratio. Thus, 40% of the damage awarded by the respondent appellate court, except the award of P25,000.00 attorney's fees, shall be borne by private respondent RMC; only the balance of 60% needs to be paid by the petitioners. The award of attorney's fees shall be borne exclusively by the petitioners. PADILLA [dissent] - the doctrine of "last clear chance" assumes that the negligence of the defendant was subsequent to the negligence of the plaintiff and the same must be the proximate cause of the injury. In short, there must be a last and a clear chance, not a last possible chance, to avoid the accident or injury. It must have been a chance as would have enabled a reasonably prudent man in like position to have acted effectively to avoid the injury and the resulting damage to himself. - the bank was not remiss in its duty of sending monthly bank statements to private respondent RMC so that any error or discrepancy in the entries therein could be brought to the bank's attention at the earliest opportunity. Private respondent failed to examine these bank statements not because it was prevented by some cause in not doing so, but because it was purposely negligent as it admitted that it does not normally check bank statements given by banks. It was private respondent who had the last and clear chance to prevent any further misappropriation by Yabut had it only reviewed the status of its current accounts on the bank statement sent to it monthly or regularly. Since a sizable amount of cash was entrusted to Yabut, private respondent should, at least, have taken care of its concerns, as what the law presumes. Its negligence, therefore, is not contributory but the immediate and proximate cause of its injury. GR No.70493 NARVASA; May 18, 1989

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about 150 meters, he "did not drive his truck back to his lane in order to avoid collision with the oncoming jeep . . .;" what is worse, "the truck driver suddenly applied his brakes even as he knew that he was still within the lane of the jeep;" had both vehicles stayed in their respective lanes, the collision would never have occurred, they would have passed "along side each other safely;" 2) Zacarias had no license at the time; what he handed to Pfc. Esparcia, on the latter's demand, was the 'driver's license of his co-driver Leonardo Baricuatro;" 3) the waiver of the right to file criminal charges against Zacarias should not be taken against "plaintiffs" Roranes and Patos who had the right, under the law, to opt merely to bring a civil suit. ISSUES WON respondent court is correct in reversing the decision of trial court. HELD NO. Ratio The doctrine of the last clear chance provides as valid and complete a defense to accident liability. (Picart v Smith) Reasoning Both drivers, as the Appellate Court found, had had a full view of each other's vehicle from a distance of one hundred fifty meters. Both vehicles were travelling at a speed of approximately thirty kilometers per hour. The private respondents have admitted that the truck was already at a full stop when the jeep plowed into it. And they have not seen fit to deny or impugn petitioners' imputation that they also admitted the truck had been brought to a stop while the jeep was still thirty meters away. From these facts the logical conclusion emerges that the driver of the jeep had what judicial doctrine has appropriately called the last clear chance to avoid the accident, while still at that distance of thirty meters from the truck, by stopping in his turn or swerving his jeep away from the truck, either of which he had sufficient time to do while running at a speed of only thirty kilometers per hour. In those circumstances, his duty was to seize that opportunity of avoidance, not merely rely on a supposed right to expect, as the Appellate Court would have it, the truck to swerve and leave him a clear path. -Picart v Smith: The plaintiff was riding a pony on a bridge. Seeing an automobile ahead he improperly pulled his horse over to the railing on the right. The driver of the automobile, however guided his car toward the plaintiff without diminution of speed until he was only few feet away. He then turned to the right but passed so closely to the horse that the latter being frightened, jumped around and was killed by the passing car. . . . . It goes without saying that the plaintiff himself was not free from fault, for he was guilty of antecedent negligence in planting himself on the wrong side of the road. But as we have already stated, the defendant was also negligent; and in such case the problem always is to discover which agent is immediately and directly responsible. It will be noted that the negligent acts of the two parties were not contemporaneous, since the negligence of the defendant succeeded the negligence of the plaintiff by an appreciable interval. Under these circumstances the law is that the person who has the last fair chance to avoid the impending harm and fails to do so is chargeable with the consequences, without reference to the prior negligence of the other party. Dispositive WHEREFORE, the appealed judgment of the Intermediate Appellate Court is hereby REVERSED, and the complaint against herein

NATURE Petition for certiorari praying for a reversal of the judgment of the Intermediate Appellate Court which, it is claimed, ignored or ran counter to the established facts. FACTS - Engineer Orlando T. Calibo, Agripino Roranes, and Maximo Patos were on the jeep owned by the Bacnotan Consolidated Industries, Inc., with Calibo at the wheel, as it approached from the South Lizada Bridge going towards the direction of Davao City at about 1:45 in the afternoon of July 4,1979. At about that time, the cargo track, loaded with cement bags, GI sheets, plywood, driven by defendant Paul Zacarias y Infants, coming from the opposite direction of Davao City and bound for Glan, South Cotabato, had just crossed said bridge. At about 59 yards after crossing the bridge, the cargo truck and the jeep collided as a consequence of which Engineer Calibo died while Roranes and Patos sustained physical injuries. Zacarias was unhurt. As a result of the impact, the left side of the truck was slightly damaged while the left side of the jeep, including its fender and hood, was extensively damaged. After the impact, the jeep fell and rested on its right side on the asphalted road a few meters to the rear of the truck, while the truck stopped on its wheels on the road. - On November 27, 1979, the instant case for damages was filed by the surviving spouse and children of the late Engineer Calibo who are residents of Tagbilaran City against the driver and owners of the cargo truck. - Trial Court dismissed the complaint (and defendants' counterclaim) "for insufficiency of evidence." The circumstances leading to the conclusion just mentioned: 1. Moments before its collission with the truck being operated by Zacarias, the jeep of the deceased Calibo was "zigzagging." 2. Unlike Zacarias who readily submitted himself to investigation by the police, Calibo's companions who suffered injuries on account of the collision, refused to be so investigated or give statements to the police officers. This, plus Roranes' waiver of the right to institute criminal proceedings against Zacarias, and the fact that indeed no criminal case was ever instituted in Court against Zacarias, were "telling indications that they did not attribute the happening to defendant Zacarias' negligence or fault." 3. Roranes' testimony, given in plaintiffs' behalf, was "not as clear and detailed as that of Zacarias," and was "uncertain and even contradicted by the physical facts and the police investigators Dimaano and Esparcia." 4. That there were skid marks left by the truck's tires at the scene, and none by the jeep, demonstrates that the driver of the truck had applied the brakes and the jeep's driver had not; and that the jeep had on impact fallen on its right side is indication that it was running at high speed. 5. Even if it be considered that there was some antecedent negligence on the part of Zacarias shortly before the collision, in that he had caused his truck to run some 25 centimeters to the left of the center of the road, Engr. Calibo had the last clear chance of avoiding the accident because he still had ample room in his own lane to steer clear of the truck, or he could simply have braked to a full stop. - IAC reversed TC. It found Zacarias to be negligent on the basis of the following circumstances, to wit: 1) "the truck driven by defendant Zacarias occupied the lane of the jeep when the collision occurred,' and although Zacarias saw the jeep from a distance of

GLAN PEOPLES LUMBER AND HARDWARE V IAC (VDA. DE CALIBO and kids)

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petitioners in Civil Case No. 3283 of the Court of First Instance of Bohol, Branch IV, is DISMISSED. No pronouncement as to costs. Voting Cruz, Gancayco, Grio-Aquino and Medialdea, JJ., concur.

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- On January 12, 1958, a passenger jeepney was parked on the road to Taal, Batangas. Buo, driver of said jeepney stopped his vehicle in order to allow one of his passengers to alight. But he parked his jeepney in such a way that of its width (the left wheels) was on the asphalted pavement of the road and the other half, on the right shoulder of the said road. A motor truck speeding along, negligently bumped it from behind, which such violence that three of its passengers died, even as 2 other passengers suffered injuries that required their confinement at the Provincial Hospital for many days. - Suits were instituted by the representatives of the dead and the injured, to recover consequently damages against the drivers and the owners of the trucks and also against the driver and the owners of the jeepney. - CFI Batangas absolved the driver of the jeepney and its owners, but it required the truck driver and the owners o make compensation. Plaintiffs appealed to the CA insisting that the driver and the owners of the jeepney should also be made liable for damages. ISSUE WON the driver and owners of the jeepney should also be made liable. HELD YES. An error of law was committed in releasing the jeepney from liability. It must be remembered that the obligation of the carrier to transport its passengers safely is such that the New Civil Code requires utmost diligence from the carriers (Art. 1755) who are presumed to have been at fault or to have acted negligently, unless they prove that they have observed extraordinary diligence (Art. 1756). In this instance, this legal presumption of negligence is confirmed by the CAs finding that jeepney driver in question was at fault in parking the vehicle improperly. It must follow that the driver and the owners of the jeepney must answer for injuries to its passengers. Obiter on Application of Principle of Last Clear Chance: The principle about the last clear chance applies in a suit between the owners and drivers of the two colliding vehicles. It does not arise where a passenger demands responsibility from the carrier to enforce its contractual obligations. For it would be inequitable to exempt the negligent driver of the jeepney and its owners on the ground that the other driver was likewise guilty of negligence. This principle does not apply in this case. DISPOSITION: Judgment modified.

PANTRANCO NORTH EXPRESS, INC v CAR BASCOS BAESA 179 SCRA 384 CORTES J.: November 1989
FACTS: At about 7:00 o'clock in the morning of June 12, 1981, the spouses Ceasar and Marilyn Baesa and their children Harold Jim, Marceline and Maricar, together with spouses David Ico and Fe O. Ico with their son Erwin Ico and seven other persons, were aboard a passenger jeepney on their way to a picnic at Malalam River, Ilagan, Isabela, to celebrate the fifth wedding anniversary of Ceasar and Marilyn Baesa. Upon reaching the highway, the jeepney turned right and proceeded to MaIalam, River at a speed of about 20 kph. While they were proceeding towards Malalam River, a speeding PANTRANCO bus from Aparri, on its regular route to Manila, encroached on the jeepney's lane while negotiating a curve, and collided with it. - David Ico, spouses Ceasar Baesa and Marilyn Baesa and their children, Harold Jim and Marcelino Baesa, died while the rest of the passengers suffered injuries. The jeepney was extensively damaged. After the accident the driver of the PANTRANCO Bus, Ambrosio Ramirez, boarded a car and proceeded to Santiago, Isabela. From that time on up to the present, Ramirez has never been seen and has apparently remained in hiding. - Maricar Baesa through her guardian Francisca O. Bascos and Fe O. Ico for herself and for her minor children, filed separate actions for damages arising from quasi-delict against PANTRANCO. Other victims settled with Bus Company. -PANTRANCO, aside from pointing to the late David Ico's alleged negligence as the proximate cause of the accident, invoked the defense of due diligence in the selection and supervision of its driver, Ambrosio Ramirez -TC ruled against PANTRANCO and ordered them to pay damages. -Pantranco appealed the decision. Appeal dismissed for lack of merit ISSUE: WON PANTRANCO is liable for damages. HELD: YES -Petitioner claims that under the circumstances of the case, it was the driver of the passenger jeepney who had the last clear chance to avoid the collision and was therefore negligent in failing to utilize with reasonable care and competence his then existing opportunity to avoid the harm. -petitioner claims that the original negligence of its driver was not the proximate cause of the accident and that the sole proximate cause was the supervening negligence of the jeepney driver David Ico in failing to avoid the accident - The doctrine of the last clear chance simply, means that the negligence of a claimant does not preclude a recovery for the negligence of defendant where it appears that the latter, by exercising reasonable care and prudence, might have avoided injurious consequences to claimant notwithstanding his negligence. -The doctrine applies only in a situation where the plaintiff was guilty of prior or antecedent negligence but the defendant, who had the last fair chance to

avoid the impending harm and failed to do so, is made liable for all the consequences of the accident notwithstanding the prior negligence of the plaintiff - The above contention of petitioner is manifestly devoid of merit. Contrary to the petitioner's contention, the doctrine of "last clear chance" finds no application in this case - Contrary to the petitioner's contention, the doctrine of "last clear chance" finds no application in this case. For the doctrine to be applicable, it is necessary to show that the person who allegedly had the last opportunity to avert the accident was aware of the existence of the peril or should, with exercise of due care, have been aware of it - In this case, there is nothing to show that the jeepney driver David Ico knew of the impending danger. When he saw at a distance that the approaching bus was encroaching on his lane, he did not immediately swerve the jeepney to the dirt shoulder on his right since he must have assumed that the bus driver will return the bus to its own lane upon seeing the jeepney approaching from the opposite direction. - Moreover, both the trial court and the Court of Appeals found that at the time of the accident the Pantranco bus was speeding towards Manila. At the time David Ico must have realized that the bus was not returning to its own lane, it was already too late to swerve the jeepney to his right to prevent an accident. - This Court has held that the last clear chance doctrine "can never apply where the party charged is required to act instantaneously, and if the injury cannot be avoided by the application of all means at hand after the peril is or should have been discovered" - Petitioner likewise insists that David Ico was negligent in failing to observe Section 43 (c), Article III Chapter IV of Republic Act No. 4136** which provides that the driver of a vehicle entering a through highway or a stop intersection shall yield the right of way to all vehicles approaching in either direction on such through highway. -Petitioner's misplaced reliance on the aforesaid law is readily apparent in this case. The cited law itself provides that it applies only to vehicles entering a through highway or a stop intersection. At the time of the accident, the jeepney had already crossed the intersection and was on its way to Malalam River -On the issue of its liability as an employer, petitioner claims that it had observed the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage, conformably to the last paragraph of Article 2180 of the Civil Code -When an injury is caused by the negligence of an employee, there instantly arises a presumption that the employer has been negligent either in the selection of his employees or in the supervision over their acts. Although this presumption is only a disputable presumption which could be overcome by proof of diligence of a good father of a family, this Court believes that the evidence submitted by the defendant to show that it exercised the diligence of a good father of a family iti the case of Ramirez, as a company driver is far from sufficient

CANLAS V, CA Purisima; February 28, 2000


Nature Petition for Review on Certiorari Facts -Sometime in August, 1982, Osmundo S. Canlas, and Vicente Maosca, decided to venture in business and to raise the capital needed therefor. The former then executed a Special Power of Attorney authorizing the latter to mortgage two parcels of land situated in San Dionisio, (BF Homes) Paranaque, Metro Manila, each lot with semi-concrete residential house in the name of the SPS Canlas. Osmundo Canlas agreed to sell the said parcels of land to Vicente Maosca, for and in consideration of P850,000.00, P500,000.00 of which payable within one week, and the balance of P350,000.00 to serve as his (Osmundo's) investment in the business. Thus, Osmundo Canlas delivered to Vicente Maosca the transfer certificates of title of the parcels of land involved. Vicente Maosca, as his part of the transaction, issued two postdated checks in favor of Osmundo Canlas in the

ANURAN V BUO 17 SCRA 224 BENGZON, May 20, 1966


NATURE: Petition for Review by certiorari of CA decision. FACTS

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amounts of P40,000.00 and P460,000.00, respectively, but it turned out that the check covering the bigger amount was not sufficiently funded. -On September 3, 1982, Vicente Maosca was able to mortgage the same parcels of land for P100,000.00 to a certain Attorney Manuel Magno, with the help of impostors who misrepresented themselves as the spouses, Osmundo Canlas and Angelina Canlas. On September 29, 1982, private respondent Vicente Maosca was granted a loan by the respondent Asian Savings Bank (ASB) in the amount of P500,000.00, with the use of subject parcels of land as security, and with the involvement of the same impostors who again introduced themselves as the Canlas spouses. When the loan it extended was not paid, respondent bank extrajudicially foreclosed the mortgage. -On January 15, 1983, Osmundo Canlas wrote a letter informing the respondent bank that the execution of subject mortgage over the two parcels of land in question was without their (Canlas spouses) authority, and request that steps be taken to annul and/or revoke the questioned mortgage. On January 18, 1983, petitioner Osmundo Canlas also wrote the office of Sheriff Maximo O. Contreras, asking that the auction sale scheduled on February 3, 1983 be cancelled or held in abeyance. But respondents Maximo C. Contreras and Asian Savings Bank refused to heed petitioner Canlas' stance and proceeded with the scheduled auction sale. -Consequently, on February 3, 1983 the herein petitioners instituted the present case for annulment of deed of real estate mortgage with prayer for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction; and on May 23, 1983, the trial court issued an Order restraining the respondent sheriff from issuing the corresponding Certificate of Sheriff's Sale.For failure to file his answer, despite several motions for extension of time for the filing thereof, Vicente Maosca was declared in default. Lower court a quo came out with a decision annulling subject deed of mortgage and disposing. Asian Savings Bank appealed to the Court of Appeals and CA reversed the lower court decision. Issue/s and Held WON CA erred in holding that the mortgage is valid Settled is the rule that a contract of mortgage must be constituted only by the absolute owner on the property mortgaged; a mortgage, constituted by an impostor is void. Considering that it was established indubitably that the contract of mortgage sued upon was entered into and signed by impostors who misrepresented themselves as the spouses Osmundo Canlas and Angelina Canlas, the Court is of the ineluctible conclusion and finding that subject contract of mortgage is a complete nullity. WON ASB must incur the resulting loss Yes. The doctrine of last clear chance is applicable, the respondent bank must suffer the resulting loss. In essence, the doctrine of last clear chance is to the effect that where both parties are negligent but the negligent act of one is appreciably later in point of time than that of the other, or where it is impossible to determine whose fault or negligence brought about the occurrence of the incident, the one who had the last clear opportunity to avoid the impending harm but failed to do so, is chargeable with the consequences arising therefrom. Stated differently, the rule is that the antecedent negligence of a person does not preclude recovery of damages caused by the supervening negligence of the latter, who had the last fair chance to prevent the impending harm by the exercise of due diligence.

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- An information for estafa was filed against one of their messengers (Ilagan) and one Roscoe Verdazola. LC Diaz demanded SolidBank the return of their money. The latter refused and a case for recovery of a sum of money was filed against them - TC applied rules on savings account written on the passbook. The rules state that possession of this book shall raise the presumption of ownership and any payment or payments made by the bank upon the production of the said book and entry therein of the withdrawal shall have the same effect as if made to the depositor personally. Also, they applied the rule that the holder of the passport is presumed the owner. It was also held that Solidbank did not have any participation in the custody and care of the passbook and as such, their act was not the proximate cause of the loss. The proximate cause was LC Diaz negligence. - CA revered. It ruled that Solidbanks negligence was the proximate cause. It applied the provision on the CC on quasi delicts and found that the requisite elements were present. They found that the teller made no inquiry upon the withdrawal of 300k. The teller could have called up LC Diaz since the amount being drawn was significant. The appellate court ruled that while L.C. Diaz was also negligent in entrusting its deposits to its messenger and its messenger in leaving the passbook with the teller, Solidbank could not escape liability because of the doctrine of last clear chance. Solidbank could have averted the injury suffered by L.C. Diaz had it called up L.C. Diaz to verify the withdrawal. ISSUES WON Solidbank was liable HELD - For breach of the savings deposit agreement due to negligence, or culpa contractual, the bank is liable to its depositor. - When the passbook is in the possession of Solidbanks tellers during withdrawals, the law imposes on Solidbank and its tellers an even higher degree of diligence in safeguarding the passbook. Likewise, Solidbanks tellers must exercise a high degree of diligence in insuring that they return the passbook only to the depositor or his authorized representative - In culpa contractual, once the plaintiff proves a breach of contract, there is a presumption that the defendant was at fault or negligent. The burden is on the defendant to prove that he was not at fault or negligent. Solidbank failed to discharge this burden. (they could have presented the teller to whom the passbook was left, but they didnt) - L.C. Diaz was not at fault that the passbook landed in the hands of the impostor. Solidbank was in possession of the passbook while it was processing the deposit. After completion of the transaction, Solidbank had the contractual obligation to return the passbook only to Calapre, the authorized representative of L.C. Diaz. SolidBanks negligence in returning the passbook was the proximate cause. - The doctrine of last clear chance states that where both parties are negligent but the negligent act of one is appreciably later than that of the other, or where it is impossible to determine whose fault or negligence caused the loss, the one who had the last clear opportunity to avoid the loss but failed to do so, is chargeable with the loss. Stated differently, the antecedent negligence of the plaintiff does not preclude him from recovering damages caused by the supervening negligence of the defendant, who had the last fair chance to prevent the impending harm by the exercise of due diligence.

In the case under consideration, from the evidence on hand it can be gleaned unerringly that respondent bank did not observe the requisite diligence in ascertaining or verifying the real identity of the couple who introduced themselves as the spouses Osmundo Canlas and Angelina Canlas. It is worthy to note that not even a single identification card was exhibited by the said impostors to show their true identity; and yet, the bank acted on their representations simply on the basis of the residence certificates bearing signatures which tended to match the signatures affixed on a previous deed of mortgage to a certain Atty. Magno, covering the same parcels of land in question. Applying Art. 1173 It could be said that the degree of diligence required of banks is more than that of a good father of a family in keeping with their responsibility to exercise the necessary care and prudence in dealing even on a registered or titled property. The business of a bank is affected with public interest, holding in trust the money of the depositors, which bank deposits the bank should guard against loss due to negligence or bad faith, by reason of which the bank would be denied the protective mantle of the land registration law, accorded only to purchasers or mortgagees for value and in good faith. Evidently, the efforts exerted by the bank to verify the identity of the couple posing as Osmundo Canlas and Angelina Canlas fell short of the responsibility of the bank to observe more than the diligence of a good father of a family. The negligence of respondent bank was magnified by the fact that the previous deed of mortgage (which was used as the basis for checking the genuineness of the signatures of the supposed Canlas spouses) did not bear the tax account number of the spouses, as well as the Community Tax Certificate of Angelina Canlas. But such fact notwithstanding, the bank did not require the impostors to submit additional proof of their true identity. For not observing the degree of diligence required of banking institutions, whose business is impressed with public interest, respondent Asian Savings Bank has to bear the loss sued upon. Disposition WHEREFORE, the Petition is GRANTED and the Decision of the Court of Appeals, dated September 30, 1993, in CA-G.R. CV No. 25242 SET ASIDE. The Decision of Branch 59 of the Regional Trial Court of Makati City in Civil Case No. M-028 is hereby REINSTATED. No pronouncement as to costs. SO ORDERED.1wphi1.nt

CONSOLIDATED BANK V CA (L.C.DIAZ AND CO.) GR No. 138569 CARPIO; September 11, 2003
NATURE Review of the decision of the CA FACTS - LC Diaz is a professional partnership engaged in accounting. On 14 August 1991, LC diaz, thru its cashier, instructed their messenger, Calapre, to deposit money in Solidbank. Calapre then deposited in Solidbank. Since the transaction took time and Calapre had to make another deposit for L.C. Diaz with Allied Bank, he left the passbook with Solidbank. When he came back, the teller told him that somebody else got the passbook. The next day, it was learned that 300k was withdrawn from the account.

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- We do not apply the doctrine of last clear chance to the present case. Solidbank is liable for breach of contract due to negligence in the performance of its contractual obligation to L.C. Diaz. This is a case of culpa contractual, where neither the contributory negligence of the plaintiff nor his last clear chance to avoid the loss, would exonerate the defendant from liability. Such contributory negligence or last clear chance by the plaintiff merely serves to reduce the recovery of damages by the plaintiff but does not exculpate the defendant from his breach of contract. DISPOSITIVE Decision affirmed, modification only to damages

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Ratio The obligation imposed by Article 2183 of the Civil Code is not based on the negligence or on the presumed lack of vigilance of the possessor or user of the animal causing the damage. It is based on natural equity and on the principle of social interest that he who possesses animals for his utility, pleasure or service must answer for the damage which such animal may cause. Reasoning ART. 2183. The possessor of an animal or whoever may make use of the same is responsible for the damage which it may cause, although it may escape or be lost. This responsibility shall cease only in case the damage should come from force majeure or from the fault of the person who has suffered damage. - While it is true that she is not really the owner of the house, which was still part of Vicente Miranda's estate, there is no doubt that she and her husband were its possessors at the time of the incident in question. - There is evidence showing that she and her family regularly went to the house, once or twice weekly. - Theness developed hydrophobia, a symptom of rabies, as a result of the dog bites, and second, that asphyxia broncho-pneumonia, which ultimately caused her death, was a complication of rabies. The Court finds that the link between the dog bites and the certified cause of death has been satisfactorily established. - It does not matter that the dog was tame and was merely provoked by the child into biting her. The law does not speak only of vicious animals but covers even tame ones as long as they cause injury. As for the alleged provocation, the petitioners forget that Theness was only three years old at the time she was attacked and can hardly be faulted for whatever she might have done to the animal. - Obligation imposed by Article 2183 of the Civil Code is not based on the negligence or on the presumed lack of vigilance of the possessor or user of the animal causing the damage. It is based on natural equity and on the principle of social interest that he who possesses animals for his utility, pleasure or service must answer for the damage which such animal may cause. DISPOSITION The Court approves the time.

the negligent acts of his opponent, is considered in law solely responsible for the consequences of the accident. But what has been shown is the presence of an emergency and the proper application of the emergency rule. There was no clear chance to speak of. Iran swerved to the left only to avoid petitioners pick-up, which was already on a head to head position going against Irans Tamaraw jeepney immediately before the vehicles collided. No convincing proof was adduced by petitioner that Iran could have avoided a head-on collision. Dispositive The appealed decision is AFFIRMED.

ENGADA V CA QUISUMBING, J.: June 20, 2003


NATURE Petition for review seeking the reversal of the decision of the CA which affirmed with modification the judgment of the RTC of Iloilo City FACTS - On November 29, 1989, at about 1:30 in the afternoon, Edwin Iran was driving a blue Toyota Tamaraw jeepney bound for Iloilo City. On board was Sheila Seyan, the registered owner of the Tamaraw. The Tamaraw passengers allegedly saw from the opposite direction a speeding Isuzu pickup, driven by petitioner Rogelio Engada. When it was just a few meters away from the Tamaraw, the Isuzu pick-ups right signal light flashed, at the same time, it swerved to its left, encroaching upon the lane of the Tamaraw and headed towards a head-on collision course with it. Seyan shouted at Iran to avoid the pick-up. Iran swerved to his left but the pick-up also swerved to its right. Thus, the pick-up collided with the Tamaraw, hitting the latter at its right front passenger side. The impact caused the head and chassis of the Tamaraw to separate from its body. Seyan was thrown out of the Tamaraw and landed on a ricefield. Seyan incurred P130,000 in medical expenses. The Toyota Tamaraw jeepney ended up in the junk heap. Its total loss was computed at P80,000. ISSUES 1. WON petitioners negligence was the proximate cause of the accident HELD 1. YES. Ratio It is a settled rule that a driver abandoning his proper lane for the purpose of overtaking another vehicle in an ordinary situation has the duty to see to it that the road is clear and he should not proceed if he cannot do so in safety. For failing to observe the duty of diligence and care imposed on drivers of vehicles abandoning their lane, petitioner must be held liable. Iran could not be faulted when in his attempt to avoid the pick-up, he swerved to his left. Petitioners acts had put Iran in an emergency situation which forced him to act quickly. An individual who suddenly finds himself in a situation of danger and is required to act without much time to consider the best means that may be adopted to avoid the impending danger, is not guilty of negligence if he fails to undertake what subsequently and upon reflection may appear to be a better solution, unless the emergency was brought by his own negligence. Reasoning The doctrine of last clear chance states that a person who has the last clear chance or opportunity of avoiding an accident, notwithstanding

STRICT LIABILITY
VESTIL V IAC (UY) 179 SCRA 47 CRUZ; December 6, 1989
NATURE Petition to reinstate the decision of the Appellate Court. FACTS - July 29, 1975: Theness was bitten by a dog while she was playing with a child of the petitioners in the house of the late Vicente Miranda, the father of Purita Vestil. She was rushed to the Cebu General Hospital, where she was treated for "multiple lacerated wounds on the forehead. She was discharged after nine days but was re-admitted one week later due to "vomiting of saliva." The following day, on August 15, 1975, the child died. The cause of death was certified as broncho-pneumonia. - Theness developed hydrophobia, a symptom of rabies, as a result of the dog bites, and second, that asphyxia broncho-pneumonia, which ultimately caused her death, was a complication of rabies - Seven months later, the Uys sued for damages, alleging that the Vestils were liable to them as the possessors of "Andoy," the dog that bit and eventually killed their daughter. - Judge Jose R. Ramolete of the Court of First Instance of Cebu sustained the defendants. IAC found that the Vestils were in possession of the house and the dog and so should be responsible under Article 2183 of the Civil Code for the injuries caused by the dog. - On the strength of the foregoing testimony, the Court finds that the link between the dog bites and the certified cause of death has been satisfactorily established. Petitioners Claim The Vestils are liable for the death of Theness, since they own the dog that bit her. Respondents Comments The dog belonged to the deceased Vicente Miranda, that it was a tame animal, and that in any case no one had witnessed it bite Theness. ISSUE WON the Vestils are liable for the damage caused by the dog. HELD

DINGCONG vs. KANAAN 72 Phil. 14; G.R. No. L-47033 AVANCEA; April 25, 1941
NATURE Petition for certiorari assailing the decision of the CA FACTS -The brothers Loreto and Jose Dingcong rented the house of Emilia Saenz (in Jose Ma. Basa Street of the City of Iloilo) and established the Central Hotel. Among the hotel's guests is Francisco Echevarria, paying P30 a month, and occupying room no. 10 of said hotel. Kanaan, on the other hand, occupies the ground floor of the hotel and established his "American Bazaar" dedicated to the purchase and sale of articles and merchandise. -Around 11pm of 19 September 1933, Echevarria, when retiring to bed, carelessly left the faucet open that with only an ordinary basin without drainage. That time, the pipes of the hotel were under repair; the water run off

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the pipes and spilled to the ground, wetting the articles and merchandise of the "American Bazaar," causing a loss which the CFI sets at P1,089.61. -The Kanaans (Halim, Nasri and Michael), representing the establishment "American Bazaar," thereafter filed this complaint for damages against Loreto Dingcong, Jose Dingcong and Francisco Echevarria. -CFI held Francisco Echevarria liable, and acquitted Jose Dingcong. CA reversed and declared Jose Dingcong responsible, sentencing him to pay the plaintiffs damages. ISSUE WON Jose Dingcong and Francisco Echevarria are liable for damages HELD YES. -Francisco Echevarria, the hotel guest, is liable for being the one who directly, by his negligence in leaving open the faucet, caused the water to spill to the ground and wet the articles and merchandise of the plaintiffs. -Jose Dingcong, being a co-renter and manager of the hotel, with complete possession of the house, must also be responsible for the damages caused. He failed to exercise the diligence of a good father of the family to prevent these damages, despite his power and authority to cause the repair of the pipes. Disposition Appealed decision is affirmed, with the costs against apellant.

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- Furthermore, it appears that the deceased had never notified the defendant corporation of his removal from San Francisco del Monte of Manila, and that the company did not know that he was living in Manila on the day of the accident; that the defendant company did not require its employees to work on Sunday, or furnish or require its agents to use bicycles. - These are additional reasons for holding that the accident was not due to and pursuance of the employment of the deceased. If the deceased saw fit to change his residence from San Francisco del Monte to Manila and to make use a bicycle in going back and forth, he did so at his own risk, as the defendant company did not furnish him a bicycle or require him to use one; and if he made collections on Sunday, he did not do so in pursuance of his employment, and his employer is not liable for any injury sustained by him. DISPOSITION The decision appealed from was affirmed, with the costs against the appellants.

defendant the equal protection of the law, and impairs the obligation of the contract between the defendant and Leopoldo Madlangbayan, and deprives the Courts of First Instance of their probate jurisdiction over the estate of deceased persons and nullifies Chapters XXIX, XXX, XXXI, XXXII, XXXIII, and XXXIV of the Civil Code Procedure and related articles of the Civil Code. ISSUE WON the employer is liable to pay the employees heirs. RULING NO. - As the deceased Leopoldo Madlangbayan was killed on November 16, 1930 and Act No. 3812 was not approved until December 8, 1930, it is apparent that the law which is applicable is Act No. 3428, section 23 of which reads as follows: When any employee receives a personal injury from any accident due to in the pursuance of the employment, or contracts any illness directly caused by such employment or the result of the nature of such employment, his employer shall pay compensation in the sums and to the persons hereinafter specified. - The accident which caused the death of the employee was not due to and in pursuance of his employment. - At the time that he was over by the truck Leopoldo Madlangbayan was not in the pursuance of his employment with the defendant corporation, but was on his way home after he had finished his work for the day and had left the territory where he was authorized to take collections for the defendant. - The employer is not an insurer "against all accidental injuries which might happen to an employee while in the course of the employment", and as a general rule an employee is not entitled to recover from personal injuries resulting from an accident that befalls him while going to or returning from his place of employment, because such an accident does no arise out of and in the course of his employment. - The phrase "due to and in the pursuance of" used in section 2 of Act No. 3428 was changed in Act No. 3812 to "arising out of and in the course of". Discussing this phrase, the Supreme Court of Illinois in the case of Mueller Construction Co. vs. Industrial Board, said: The words "arising out of" refer to the origin or cause of the accident, and are descriptive of its character, while the words "in the course of" refer to the time, place, and circumstances under which the accident takes place. By the use of these words it was not the intention of the legislature to make the employer an insurer against all accidental injuries which might happen to an employee while in the course of the employment, but only for such injuries arising from or growing out of the risks peculiar to the nature of the work in the scope of the workman's employment of incidental to such employment, and accidents in which it is possible to trace the injury to some risk or hazard to which the employee is exposed in a special degree by reason of such employment. Risks to which all persons similarly situated are equally exposed and not traceable in some special degree to the particular employment are excluded. - If the deceased had been killed while going from house to house in San Francisco del Monte in the pursuance of his employment, the plaintiffs would undoubtedly have the right, prima facie, to recover. - In the case at bar the deceased was going from work in his own conveyance.

COCA-COLA BOTTLERS PHILS V CA (GERONIMO) 227 SCRA 292 DAVIDE, JR.; October 18, 1993
NATURE Petition for review on certiorari of the decision of the Court of Appeals FACTS - Lydia Geronimo was engaged in the business of selling food and drinks to children in the Kindergarten Wonderland Canteen located in Dagupan. - August 12, 1989 - A group of parents complained that they found fibrous material in the bottles of Coke and Sprite that their children bought from Geronimos store. Geronimo examined her stock of softdrinks and found that there were indeed fibrous materials in the unopened soda bottles. She brought the bottles to the Department of Health office in their region and was informed that the soda samples she sent were adulterated. - Because of this, Geronimos sales plummeted with her regular sales of 10 cases day dwindling to about 2 or 3 cases. Her losses amounted to P200 to P300 a day which later on forced her to close down her business on December 12, 1989. - She demanded payment of damages from plaintiff Coca-Cola but the latter did not accede to her demands. - The trial court ruled in favor of Coca-Cola, stating that the complaint was based on a contract and not a quasi-delict because of pre-existing relation between the parties. Thus the complaint should have been filed within 6 months from the delivery of the thing sold. - The trial court however annulled the questioned orders of the RTC and directed it to conduct further proceedings in the civil case. According to the CA: the allegations in the complaint plainly show that it is an action for damages arising from respondents act of recklessly and negligently manufacturing adulterated food items intended to be sol for public consumption. It also noted that the availability of an action for breach of warranty does not bar an action for torts in a sale of defective goods. Petitioners Claim: - Coca-Cola moved to dismiss the complaint on the grounds of failure to exhaust administrative remedies and prescription. - Since the complaint is for breach of warranty (under A1561, CC), it should have been brought within 6 months from the delivery of the goods. Respondents Comments:

AFABLE V SINGER SEWING MACHINE COMPANY 58 PHIL 14 VICKERS; March 6, 1933


NATURE Appeal from a decision of the CFI of Manila FACTS - Leopoldo Madlangbayan was a collector for the Singer Sewing Machine Company in the district of San Francisco del Monte, outside of the limits of the City of Manila, and he was supposed to be residing in his district according to the records of the company. - One Sunday afternoon, Leopoldo Madlangbayan while riding a bicycle was run over and fatally injured at the corner of O'Donnel and Zurbaran streets in the City of Manila by a truck driven by Vitaliano Sumoay. - It appears that Madlangbayan had moved to Teodora Alonso St. in Manila without notifying the company, and that at the time of his death he was returning home after making some collections in San Francisco del Monte. - According to the practice of the company, if collectors made collections on Sunday they were required to deliver the amount collected to the company the next morning. - The widow and children of Leopoldo Madlangbayan brought an action to recover from the defendant corporation under Act No. 3428, as amended by Act. No. 3812, P100 for burial expenses and P1,745.12 for compensation. - Plaintiffs' complaint was subsequently amended, and they sought to recover under sections 8 and 10 of Act No. 3428 fifty per cent of P16.78 for 208 weeks of P1,745.12 plus P100 for burial expenses. - Defendant as special defenses alleged that Leopoldo Madlangbayan at the time that he sustained the injuries resulting in his death was violating an ordinance of the City of Manila which prohibits work on Sunday; and that Act No. 3428, as amended, is unconstitutional and void because it denies the

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- Geronimo alleges that her complaint is one for damages which does not involve an administrative action. - Her cause of action is based on an injury to plaintiffs right which can be brought within 4 years (based on A1146, CC). ISSUE WON the complaint is founded on a quasi-delict and pursuant to A1146(12), CC, the action prescribes in 4 years HELD YES Reasoning - The vendees remedies against a vendor with respect to the warranties against hidden defects or encumbrances upon the thing sold are not limited to those prescribed in A1567. The vendee may also ask for the annulment of the contract upon proof of error or fraud in which case the ordinary rule on obligations shall be applicable. - Under American law, the liabilities of the manufacturer or seller of injurycausing products may be based on negligence, breach of warranty, tort or other grounds. DISPOSITION The instant petition is denied for lack of merit.

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becomes liable in an action for damages for a nontrespassory invasion of anothers interest in the private use and enjoyment of asset if a) the other has property rights and privileges with respect to the use or enjoyment interfered with; b) the invasion is substantial; c) the defendants conduct is a legal cause of the invasion; d) the invasion is either intentional and unreasonable or unintentional and actionable under the general negligence rules. - On the other hand, the elemts of tort interference are a) existence of a valid contract b) knowledge on the part of the third party of its existence c) interference of the third party is without legal justification or excuse - Since there were existing lease contracts between Tek Hua and DC Chuan, Tek Hua in fact had property rights over the leased stalls. The action of Trendsetter in asking DC Chuan to execute the contracts in their favor was unlawful interference. - The SC handled the question of whether the interference may be justified considering that So acted solely for the purpose of furthering his own financial or economic interest. It stated that it is sufficient that the impetus of his conduct lies in a proper business interest rather than in wrongful motives to conclude that So was not a malicious interferer. Nothing on the record imputes deliberate wrongful motives or malice on the part of So. Hence the lack of malice precludes the award of damages. - The provision in the Civil Code with regard tortuous interference is Article 1314 which states that any third party who induces another to violate his contract shall be liable for damages to the other contracting party. The Court ratiocinated that the recovery of legal fees is in the concept of actual or compensatory damages as provided in Article 2208 of the Civil Code. In this casse, due to defendants action of interference, plaintiff was forced to seek relief through the Court snd thereby incur expenses to protect his interests. The Court, however, found the award exorbitant. It was reduced to Pesos 100,000.00 Disposition Petition denied. CA decision affirmed subject to the modified award of attorneys fees.

know the identity of a person to whom he causes damage. No such knowledge is required in order that the injured party may recover for the damages suffered. DISPOSITION Judgment affirmed

SON PING BUN vs CA (Tek Hua) GR No. 120554 Quisumbing; September 21, 1999
NATURE Appeal on certiorari for review of CA decision FACTS - In 1963, Tek hua Trading, through its Managing Director So Pek Giok, entered into a lease agreement with D.C. Chuan covering four stalls in Binondo. The contracts were initially for one year but after expiry of the same, they continued on a month to month basis. In 1976, Tek Hua was dissolved with the original members forming a new corporation, Tek Hua Enterprises with Manuel Tiong as one of the incorporators. - So Ping Bun, on the death of his grandfather, So Pek Giok, occupied the same stalls under the business name, Trendsetter Marketing. - In 1989, the lessor, DC Chuan sent a letter to Tek Hua advising it of a 25% increase in rent effective September 1, 1989. A further rent increase of 30% effective January 1, 1990 was implemented. Enclosed in both letters were new lease contracts for signing. While the letters contained a statement that the leases will be terminated if the contracts were not signed, the same were not rescinded. - In 1991, Tiong wrote a letter to So Ping Bun asking him to vacate the four stalls as the same were going to be used by them. Instead of vacating the stalls, So was able to secure lease agreements from DC Chuan. - Tek Hua filed an injunction and an action for nullification of the contracts between Trendsetter and DC Chuan. The lower Court ruled in favor of Tek Hua. The CA, on appeal, upheld the trial court. Both the trial court and the CA awarded legal fees only. ISSUE - WON So Ping Bun was guilty of tortuous interference of contract HELD- Yes. A duty which the law on torts is concerned with is respect for the property of others, and a cause of action ex delicto may be predicated upon an unlawful interference by one party of the enjoyment of the other of his private property. In the case at bar, petitioner, Trendsetter asked DC Chuan to execute lease contracts in its favor, and as a result petitioner deprived respondent of the latters property right. Reasoning- Damage is the loss, hurt, or harm which results from injury, and damges are the recompense or compensation awarded for the damage suffered. One

GILCHRIST v CUDDY 29 Phil 542 TRENT; February 18, 1915


NATURE Appeal from the decision of the CFI FACTS -Cuddy was the owner of the film Zigomar. Gilchrist was the owner of a theatre in Iloilo. They entered into a contract whereby Cuddy leased to Gilchrist the Zigomar for exhibition in his theatre for a week for P125. - Cuddy returned the money already paid by Gilchrist days before the delivery date so that he can lease the film to Espejo and Zaldarriaga instead and receive P350 for the film for the same period. - Gilchrist filed a case for specific performance against Cuddy, Espejo and Zaldarriaga. He also prayed for damages against Espejo and Zaldarriaga for interfering with the contract between Gilchrist and Cuddy. ISSUE WON Espejo and Zaldarriaga is liable for interfering with the contract between Gilchrist and Cuddy, they not knowing at the time the identity of the parties HELD YES - Appellants have the legal liability for interfering with the contract and causing its breach. This liability arises from unlawful acts and not from contractual obligations to induce Cuddy to violate his contract with Gilchrist. - Article 1902 of the Civil Code provides that a person who, by act or omission causes damage to another when there is fault or negligence, shall be obliged to pay for the damage done. There is nothing in this article which requires as a condition precedent to the liability of the tortfeasor that he must

GUILATCO v CITY OF DAGUPAN 171 SCRA 382 SARMIENTO; Mar 21, 1989
Nature: Petition for Certiorari to review the decision of CA Facts:

torts & damages


- on July 25, 1978, Florentina Guilatco, a court interpreter, accidentally fell into a manhole while she was about to board a motorized tricycle at a sidewalk at Perez Blvd. Her right leg was fractured, due to which she was hospitalized, operated on, and confined. - She averred that she suffered mental and physical pain, and that she has difficulty in locomotion. She has not yet reported for duty as court interpreter (at the time of filing of complaint) and thus lost income. She also lost weight, and she is no longer her former jovial self. Moreover, she has been unable to perform her religious, social, and other activities which she used to do prior to the incident. - Police confirmed existence of the manhole, which was partially covered by a concrete flower pot by leaving a gaping hole about 2 ft long by 1 feet wide or 42 cm wide by 75 cm long by 150 cm deep. - City Engineer of Dagupan Alfredo Tangco admitted that the manhole is owned by the National Government and the sidewalk on which they are found along Perez Blvd. are also owned by the National Government. He said that he supervises the maintenance of said manholes and sees to it that they are properly covered, and the job is specifically done by his subordinates. - Trial court ordered the city to pay Guilatco actual, moral and exemplary damages, plus attorneys fees. CA reversed the lower courts ruling on the ground that no evidence was presented to prove that City of Dagupan had control or supervision over Perez Blvd. - City contends that Perez Blvd is a national road that is not under the control or supervision of the City of Dagupan. Hence, no liability should attach to the city. Issue WON control or supervision over a national road by the City of Dagupan exists, in effect binding the city to answer for damages in accordance with article 2189 CC. Held YES - The liability of private corporations for damages arising from injuries suffered by pedestrians from the defective condition of roads is expressed in the Civil Code as follows: Article 2189. Provinces, cities and municipalities shall be liable for damages for the death of, or injuries suffered by, any person by reason of the defective condition of roads, streets, bridges, public buildings, and other public works under their control or supervision. - It is not even necessary for the defective road or street to belong to the province, city or municipality for liability to attach. The article only requires that either control or supervision is exercised over the defective road or street. - In this case, control or supervision is provided for in the charter of Dagupan and is exercised through the City Engineer. - The charter only lays down general rules regulating that liability of the city. On the other hand, article 2189 applies in particular to the liability arising from defective streets, public buildings and other public works. On Damages awarded - Actual damages of P10000 reduced to proven expenses of P8053.65. The trial court should not have rounded off the amount. The court can not rely on speculation, conjecture or guess work as to the amount.

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Ratio Joint tortfeasors are all the persons who command, instigate, promote, encourage, advise, countenance, cooperate in, aid or abet the commission of a tort, or who approve of it after it is done, if done for their benefit. Joint tortfeasors are jointly and severally liable for the tort which they commit. They are each liable as principals, to the same extent and in the same manner as if they had performed the wrongful act themselves. ***If several persons jointly commit a tort, the plaintiff or person injured, has his election to sue all or some of the parties jointly, or one of them separately, because tort is in its nature a separate act of each individual. Reasoning Defendants fail to recognize that the basis of the present action is a tort. They fail to recognize the universal doctrine that each joint tortfeasor is not only individually liable for the tort in which he participates, but is also jointly liable with his tortfeasors. The defendants might have been sued separately for the commission of the tort. They might have sued jointly and severally, as they were. It is not necessary that the cooperation should be a direct, corporeal act. **note: Ponente used examples of torts as held under common law** (In a case of assault and battery committed by various persons, under the common law, all are principals). So also is the person who counsels, aids, or assists in any way the commission of a wrong. Under the common law, he who aided, assisted or counseled, in any way the commission of a crime, was as much a principal as he who inflicted or committed the actual tort. - Joint tortfeasors are jointly and severally liable for the tort which they commit. The person injured may sue all of them, or any number less than all. Each is liable for the whole damage caused by all, and altogether jointly liable for the whole damage. It is no defense for one sued alone, that the others who participated in the wrongful act are not joined with him as defendants; nor is it any excuse for him that his participation in the tort was insignificant as compared with that of the others. - The courts during the trial may find that some of the alleged joint tortfeasors are liable and that others are not liable. The courts may release some for lack of evidence while condemning others of the alleged tort. And this is true even though they are charged jointly and severally. However, in this case, the lower court, committed no error in rendering a joint and several judgment against the defendants. As recognized by Section 6 of Act 277 of the Philippine Commission: Every author, editor, or proprietor * * * is chargeable with the publication of any words in any part * * * or number of each newspaper, as fully as if he were the author of the same. Disposition Judgment of the lower court modified. Ocampo, Kalaw, Palma, Arellano, Jose, Lichauco, Barretto, and Cansipit held jointly and severally liable for the sum of P25, 000 with interest at 6%. Santos absolved from any liability. ARELLANO, C.J. and MAPA, J. [concurring] - We concur, except with reference to the liability imposed upon Lichauco. The real owner and founder, Ocampo, explicitly stated that the other socalled founders subscribed and paid sums of money to aid the paper but as to Lichauco, he offered to contribute, but did not carry out his offer and in fact paid nothing. It is incomprehensible how one could claim the right or title to share the earnings or profits of a company when he had put no capital into it, neither is it comprehensible how one could share in the losses thereof, and still less incur liability for damages on account of some act of the said company, an unrestricted liability to the extent of all his property, as though he were a regular general partner when he was not such. TORRES [dissenting in part]

- Moral damages of P150000 is excessive and is reduced to P20000. Guilatcos handicap was not permanent and disabled her only during her treatment which lasted for one year. - Exemplary damages of P50000 reduced to P10000. - Award of P7420 as lost income for one year, plus P450 bonus remain the same - P3000 as attorneys fees remain the same Disposition Petition granted. CA decision reversed and set aside, decision of trial court reinstated with modification.

PERSONS LIABLE
WORCESTER v OCAMPO 22 PHIL 42 Johnson; Feb. 27, 1912
NATURE Appeal from judgment of CFI FACTS - Plaintiff Dean Worcester, member of the Civil Commission of the Philippines and Secretary of the Interior of the Insular Government commenced an action against defendants Ocampo, Kalaw, Santos, Reyes, Aguilar, Liquete, Palma, Arellano, Jose, Lichauco, Barretto and Cansipit (owners, directors, writers, editors and administrators of a certain newspaper known as El Renacimiento or Muling Pagsilang) for the purpose of recovering damages resulting from an alleged libelous publication. - The editorial Birds of Prey was alleged to have incited the Filipino people into believing that plaintiff was a vile despot and a corrupt person, unworthy of the position which he held. The said editorial alluded to him as an eagle that surprises and devours, a vulture that gorges himself on dead and rotten meat, an owl that affects a petulant omniscience, and a vampire that sucks the blood of the victim until he leaves it bloodless. - After hearing the evidence adduced during trial, the judge of the CFI rendered judgment in favor of petitioner, holding all the defendants (except for Reyes, Aguilar and Liquete who were found to be editors but in a subordinate position and found to have merely acted under the direction of their superiors) liable jointly and severally for sustained damages on account of petitioners wounded feelings, mental suffering and injuries to his standing and reputation in the sum of P35,000 as well as P25,000 as punitive damages. - This judgment prompted defendants to appeal to the SC, claiming that the CFI committed several errors in rendering said judgment among which was that the lower court committed an error in rendering a judgment jointly and severally against the defendants. ISSUE WON the defendants, regardless of their participation in the commission of the actual tort, may be held jointly and severally liable as joint tortfeasors HELD YES.

torts & damages


- I concur in regard to the defendants Ocampo and Kalaw, but dissent as regards Palma, Arellano, Jose, Lichauco, Barretto, and Cansipit for they had neither direct nor indirect participation in the act that gave rise to the present suit for damages, nor were they owners or proprietors of the newspaper, its press or other equipment. They were donors who merely contributed a sum of money, as a genuine gift, for the purpose of founding, editing, and issuing the said newspaper, it is improper to deduce that the contributors formed a company of either a civil or commercial nature. - After Ocampo had accepted the various amounts proffered, the donors ceased to be the owners of and surrendered all right to the money donated and to the objects that were acquired therewith. Therefore they can not incur, jointly and severally with the director and manager.

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WON Yu Khe Thai should be held solidarily liable as Bernardos employer

CHAPMAN V UNDERWOOD 27 Phil 374 MORELAND; March 28, 1914


NATURE Appeal from the judgment of trial court finding for the defendant FACTS - The plaintiff-appellant, Chapman, desired to board a certain "San Marcelino" car coming from Sta. Ana and bound for Manila. Being told by his friend that the car was approaching, he immediately, and somewhat hurriedly, passed into the street for the purpose of signaling and boarding the car. The car was a closed one, the entrance being from the front or the rear platform. Plaintiff attempted to board the front platform but, seeing that he could not reach it without extra exertion, stopped beside the car, facing toward the rear platform, and waited for it to come abreast of him in order to board. While in this position he was struck from behind and run over by the defendant's (Underwood) automobile. - The defendant entered Calle Herran at Calle Peafrancia in his automobile driven by his chauffeur, a competent driver. A street car bound from Manila to Sta. Ana being immediately in front of him, he followed along behind it. Just before reaching the scene of the accident the street car which was following took the switch (there was a single-track street-car line running along Calle Herran, with occasional switches to allow cars to meet and pass each other)that is, went off the main line to the left upon the switch lying alongside of the main track. Thereupon the defendant either kept straight ahead on the main street-car track or a bit to the right. The car which the plaintiff intended to board was on the main line and bound in an opposite direction to that in which the defendant was going. When the front of the "San Marcelino" car was almost in front of the defendant's automobile, defendant's driver suddenly went to the right and struck and ran over the plaintiff. - The judgment of the trial court was for defendant. ISSUE WON Underwood is responsible for the negligence of his driver. HELD NO. Ratio An owner who sits in his automobile or other vehicle, and permits his driver to continue in a violation of the law by the performance of negligent acts, after he has had a reasonable opportunity to observe them and to direct that the driver cease therefrom, becomes himself responsible for such acts.

On the other hand, if the driver, by a sudden act of negligence, and without the owner having a reasonable opportunity to prevent the act or its continuance, injures a person or violates the criminal law, the owner of the automobile, although present herein at5 the time the act was committed, is not responsible, either civilly or criminally, therefore. The act complained of must be continued in the presence or the owner for such a length of time that the owner by his acquiescence, makes his drivers act his own. Reasoning Defendant's driver was guilty of negligence in running upon and over the plaintiff. He was passing an oncoming car upon the wrong side. - The plaintiff needed only to watch for cars coming from his right, as they were the only ones under the law permitted to pass upon that side of the street car. - in the case of Johnson vs. David, the driver does not fall within the list of persons in Art.1903 of the Civil Code for whose acts the defendant would be responsible. Although in the David case the owner of the vehicle was not present at the time the alleged negligent acts were committed by the driver, the same rule applies where the owner is present, unless the negligent act of the driver are continued for such a length of time as to give the owner a reasonable opportunity to observe them and to direct his driver to desist therefrom. - it appears with fair clearness that the interval between the turning out to meet and pass the street car and the happening of the accident was so small as not to be sufficient to charge defendant with the negligence of the driver. DISPOSITION The judgment appealed from is affirmed.

HELD
No. - Bernardo had no record of any traffic violation. No negligence of having employed him maybe imputed to his master. - Negligence on the employers part, if any, must be sought in the immediate setting,, that is, in his failure to detain the driver from pursuing a course which not only gave him clear notice of the danger but also sufficient time to act upon it. - No negligence can be imputed. The car was running at a reasonable speed. The road was wide and open. There was no reason for Yu to be specially alert. He had reason to rely on the skill of his driver. The time element was such that there was no reasonable opportunity for Yu Khe Thai to assess the risks involved and warn the driver accordingly. - The law does not require that a person must possess a certain measure of skill or proficiency either in the mechanics of driving or in the observance of traffic rules before he may own a motor vehicle. The test of his intelligence, within the meaning of Article 2184, is his omission to do that which the evidence of his own senses tells him he should do in order to avoid the accident. And as far as perception is concerned, absent a minimum level imposed by law, a maneuver that appears to be fraught with danger to one passenger may appear to be entirely safe and commonplace to another

CAEDO V YU KHE THAI GR NO. L-20392 MAKALINTAL; December 18, 1968 NATURE
Petition for review of the decision of the CFI of Iloilo

DISPOSITIVE
Decision modified. Yu Khe Thai is free from liability

FACTS
- Bernardo is the driver of Yu Khe Thai. He was driving the latters Cadillac along highway 54. On the other side of the road, Caedo was driving his Mercury car. He was with his family. - A carretela was in front of the Cadillac. Bernardo did not see the carretela from afar. When he approached the carritela, he decided to overtake it even though he had already seen the car of the Caedos approaching from the opposite lane. As he did so the curved end of his car's right rear bumper caught the forward rim of the rig's left wheel, wrenching it off and carrying it along as the car skidded obliquely to the other lane, where it collided with the oncoming vehicle. - The Caedos were injured. They filed a suit for recovery of damages against Bernardo and Yu Khe Thai. The CFI ruled in favor of the Caedos and held Bernardo and Yu solidarily liable.

CAEDO v. YU KHE THAI GR No. L-20392 MAKALINTAL; December 18, 1968


FACTS - Marcial was driving his Mercury car on his way from his home in Quezon City to the airport, where his son Ephraim was scheduled to take a plane for Mindoro. With them in the car were Mrs. Caedo and three daughters. Coming from the opposite direction was the Cadillac of Yu Khe Thai, with his driver Rafael Bernardo at the wheel, taking the owner from his Paraaque home to Wack Wack. - The two cars were traveling at fairly moderate speeds, considering the condition of the road and the absence of traffic the Mercury at 40 to 50 kilometers per hour, and the Cadillac at approximately 48 to 56 kilometers. Their headlights were mutually noticeable from a distance. Ahead of the Cadillac, going in the same direction, was a caretella owned by a certain Pedro Bautista. The carretela was towing another horse by means of a short rope coiled around the rig's vertical post on the right side and held at the other end by Pedro's son, Julian Bautista. - Rafael Bernardo testified that he was almost upon the rig when he saw it in front of him, only eight meters away. This is the first clear indication of his

ISSUES

torts & damages


negligence. The carretela was provided with two lights, one on each side, and they should have given him sufficient warning to take the necessary precautions. And even if he did not notice the lights, as he claimed later on at the trial, the carretela should anyway have been visible to him from afar if he had been careful, as it must have been in the beam of his headlights for a considerable while. - In the meantime the Mercury was coming on its own lane from the opposite direction. Bernardo, instead of slowing down or stopping altogether behind the carretela until that lane was clear, veered to the left in order to pass. As he did so the curved end of his car's right rear bumper caught the forward rim of the rig's left wheel, wrenching it off and carrying it along as the car skidded obliquely to the other lane, where it collided with the oncoming vehicle. On his part Caedo had seen the Cadillac on its own lane; he slackened his speed, judged the distances in relation to the carretela and concluded that the Cadillac would wait behind. Bernardo, however, decided to take a gamble beat the Mercury to the point where it would be in line with the carretela, or else squeeze in between them in any case. It was a risky maneuver either way, and the risk should have been quite obvious. - It was already too late to apply the brakes when Bernardo saw the carretela only eight meters in front of him, and so he had to swerve to the left in spite of the presence of the oncoming car on the opposite lane. As it was, the clearance Bernardo gave for his car's right side was insufficient. Its rear bumper, as already stated, caught the wheel of the carretela and wrenched it loose. Caedo, confronted with the unexpected situation, tried to avoid the collision at the last moment by going farther to the right, but was unsuccessful. The photographs taken at the scene show that the right wheels of his car were on the unpaved shoulder of the road at the moment of impact. ISSUE 1. WON defendant Rafael Bernardo is liable for the accident. 2. If YES, WON his employer, defendant Yu Khe Thai, is solidarily liable with him. HELD 1. YES. There is no doubt at all that the collision was directly traceable to Rafael Bernardo's negligence and that he must be held liable for the damages suffered by the plaintiffs. 2. NO. If the causative factor was the driver's negligence, the owner of the vehicle who was present is likewise held liable if he could have prevented the mishap by the exercise of due diligence. - The basis of the master's liability in civil law is not respondent superior but rather the relationship of paterfamilias. The theory is that ultimately the negligence of the servant, if known to the master and susceptible of timely correction by him, reflects his own negligence if he fails to correct it in order to prevent injury or damage. - The test of imputed negligence under Article 2184 of the Civil Code is, to a great degree, necessarily subjective. Car owners are not held to a uniform and inflexible standard of diligence as are professional drivers. - The law does not require that a person must possess a certain measure of skill or proficiency either in the mechanics of driving or in the observance of traffic rules before he may own a motor vehicle. The test of his intelligence, within the meaning of Article 2184, is his omission to do that which the evidence of his own senses tells him he should do in order to avoid the accident. And as far as perception is concerned, absent a minimum level imposed by law, a maneuver that appears to be fraught with danger to one

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sat on his left side. They have not gone far when the jeep turned turtle and two of its passengers, Amado Ticzon and Isidoro Caperia, died as a consequence. It further appears that Delfin Capuno, father of Dante, was not with his son at the time of the accident, nor did he know that his son was going to attend a parade. He only came to know it when his son told him after the accident that he attended the parade upon instruction of his teacher. Plaintiff contends that defendant Delfin Capuno is liable for the damages in question jointly and severally with his son Dante because at the time the latter committed the negligent act which resulted in the death of the victim, he was a minor and was then living with his father, and inasmuch as these facts are not disputed, the civil liability of the father is evident. And so, plaintiff contends, the lower court erred in relieving the father from liability. ISSUE Whether defendant Delfin Capuno can be held civilly liable, jointly and severally with his son Dante, for damages resulting from the death of Isidoro Caperia caused by the negligent act of minor Dante Capuno. RULING YES.12 RATIO Parents shall be liable for the tortious conduct of their minor children living with them although at the time of the tort, the children were under the direct control or supervision of an academic institution. (THIS IS A LANDMARK DOCTRINE, WHICH WAS LATER MODIFIED BY J CRUZ IN AMADORA VS. COURT OF APPEALS) REASONING The provision Teachers or directors of arts and trades are liable for any damages caused by their pupils or apprentices while they are under their custody", only applies to an institution of arts and trades and not to any academic educational institution. Dante Capuno was then a student of the Balintawak Elementary School and as part of his extra-curricular activity, he attended the parade in honor of Dr. Jose Rizal upon instruction of the city school's supervisor. And it was in connection with that parade that Dante boarded a jeep with some companions and while driving it, the accident occurred. In the circumstances, it is clear that neither the head of that school, nor the city school's supervisor, could be held liable for the negligent act of Dante because he was not then a student of an institution of arts and trades as provided for by law.

passenger may appear to be entirely safe and commonplace to another. Were the law to require a uniform standard of perceptiveness, employment of professional drivers by car owners who, by -their very inadequacies, have real need of drivers' services, would be effectively proscribed. - Rafael Bernardo had no record of violation of traffic laws and regulations. No negligence for having employed him at all may be imputed to his master. Negligence on the part of the latter, if any, must be sought in the immediate setting and circumstances of the accident, that is, in his failure to detain the driver from pursuing a course which not only gave him clear notice of the danger but also sufficient time to act upon it. We do not see that such negligence may be imputed. The car was not running at an unreasonable speed. The road was wide and open, and devoid of traffic that early morning. There was no reason for the car owner to be in any special state of alert. He had reason to rely on the skill and experience of his driver. The time element was such that there was no reasonable opportunity for Yu Khe Thai to assess the risks involved and warn the driver accordingly. DISPOSITION Judgment appealed from is modified in the sense of declaring defendant-appellant Yu Khe Thai free from liability, and is otherwise affirmed with respect to defendant Rafael Bernardo, with costs against the latter.

SABINA EXCONDE vs. DELFIN CAPUNO and DANTE CAPUNO G.R. No. L-10068-70 June 29, 1957 BAUTISTA ANGELO, J.:
FACTS Dante Capuno, son of Delfin Capuno, was accused of double homicide through reckless imprudence for the death of Isidoro Caperia and Amado Ticzon on March 31, 1949 in the Court of First Instance of Laguna. During the trial, Sabina Exconde, as mother of the deceased Isidoro Caperia, reserved her right to bring a separate civil action for damages against the accused. After trial, Dante Capuno was found guilty of the crime charged and, on appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the decision. Dante Capuno was only fifteen (15) years old when he committed the crime. In line with her reservation, Sabina Exconde filed the present action against Delfin Capuno and his son Dante Capuno asking for damages in the aggregate amount of P2,959.00 for the death of her son Isidoro Caperia. Defendants set up the defense that if any one should be held liable for the death of Isidoro Caperia, he is Dante Capuno and not his father Delfin because at the time of the accident, the former was not under the control, supervision and custody of the latter. This defense was sustained by the lower court and, as a consequence, it only convicted Dante Capuno to pay the damages claimed in the complaint. From this decision, plaintiff appealed to the Court of Appeals but the case was certified to the Supreme Court on the ground that the appeal only involves questions of law. It appears that Dante Capuno was a member of the Boy Scouts Organization and a student of the Balintawak Elementary School situated in a barrio in the City of San Pablo and on March 31, 1949 he attended a parade in honor of Dr. Jose Rizal in said city upon instruction of the city school's supervisor. From the school Dante, with other students, boarded a jeep and when the same started to run, he took hold of the wheel and drove it while the driver

The case involves an interpretation of Article 1903 of the Spanish Civil Code, paragraph 1 and 5, (schools liability versus parental liability) which provides: "ART. 1903. The obligation imposed by the next preceding articles is enforceable not only for personal acts and omissions, but also for those of persons for whom another is responsible.
12

The father, and, in case of his death or incapacity, the mother, are liable for any damages caused by the minor children who live with them. xxx xxx xxx Finally, teachers or directors of arts and trades are liable for any damages caused by their pupils or apprentices while they are under their custody."

torts & damages


The civil liability which the law impose upon the father, and, in case of his death or incapacity, the mother, for any damages that may be caused by the minor children who live with them, is obvious. This is a necessary consequence of the parental authority they exercise over them which imposes upon the parents the "duty of supporting them, keeping them in their company, educating them and instructing them in proportion to their means", while, on the other hand, gives them the "right to correct and punish them in moderation" (Articles 154 and 155, Spanish Civil Code). The only way by which they can relieve themselves of this liability is if they prove that they exercised all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent the damage (Article 1903, last paragraph, Spanish Civil Code). This defendants failed to prove. Wherefore, the decision appealed from is modified in the sense that defendants Delfin Capuno and Dante Capuno shall pay to plaintiff, jointly and severally, the sum of P2,959.00 as damages, and the costs of action. REYES, J.B.L., J., dissenting: I believe we should affirm the judgment relieving the father of liability. I can see no sound reason for limiting Art. 1903 of the old Civil Code to teachers of arts and trades and not to academic ones. What substantial difference is there between them in so far as concerns the proper supervision and vigilance over their pupils? It cannot be seriously contended that an academic teacher is exempt from the duty of watching that his pupils do not commit a tort to the detriment of third persons, so long as they are in a position to exercise authority and supervision over the pupil. In my opinion, in the phrase "teachers or heads of establishments of arts and trades" used in Art. 1903 of the old Civil Code, the words "arts and trades" does not qualify "teachers" but only "heads of establishments". The phrase is only an updated version of the equivalent terms "preceptores y artesanos" used in the Italian and French Civil Codes. If, as conceded by all commentators, the basis of the presumption of negligence of Art. 1903 in some culpa in vigilando that the parents, teachers, etc. are supposed to have incurred in the exercise of their authority, it would seem clear that where the parent places the child under the effective authority of the teacher, the latter, and not the parent, should be the one answerable for the torts committed while under his custody, for the very reason that the parent is not supposed to interfere with the discipline of the school nor with the authority and supervision of the teacher while the child is under instruction. And if there is no authority, there can be no responsibility. I submit that the father should not be held liable for a tort that he was in no way able to prevent, and which he had every right to assume the school authorities would avoid. Having proved that he entrusted his child to the custody of school authorities that were competent to exercise vigilance over him, the father has rebutted the presumption of Art. 1903 and the burden of proof shifted to the claimant to show actual negligence on the part of the parent in order to render him liable. Padilla and Reyes, A., JJ., concur.

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it appears that there is no fault or negligence on his part. This is because a son who commits the act under any of those conditions is by law exempt from criminal liability (Article 12, subdivisions 1, 2 and 3, Revised Penal Code). The idea is not to leave the act entirely unpunished but to attach certain civil liability to the person who has the delinquent minor under his legal authority or control. But a minor over 15 who acts with discernment is not exempt from criminal liability, for which reason the Code is silent as to the subsidiary liability of his parents should he stand convicted. In that case, resort should be had to the general law which is our Civil Code. The particular law that governs this case is Article 2180, the pertinent portion of which provides: "The father and, in case of his death or incapacity, the mother, are responsible for damages caused by the minor children who live in their company." To hold that this provision does not apply to the instant case because it only covers obligations which arise from quasi-delicts and not obligations which arise from criminal offenses, would result in the absurdity that while for an act where mere negligence intervenes the father or mother may stand subsidiarily liable for the damage caused by his or her son, no liability would attach if the damage is caused with criminal intent. Verily, the void apparently exists in the Revised Penal Code is subserved by this particular provision of our Civil Code, as may be gleaned from some recent decisions of this Court which cover equal or identical cases. Moreover, the case at bar was decided by the Court of Appeals on the basis of the evidence submitted therein by both parties, independently of the criminal case. And responsibility for fault or negligence under Article 2176 upon which the action in the present case was instituted, is entirely separate and distinct from the civil liability arising from fault of negligence under the Penal Code (Art. 2177), and having in mind the reasons behind the law as heretofore stated, any discussion as to the minor's criminal responsibility is of no moment. IN VIEW HEREOF, the petition is dismissed, the decision appealed from is affirmed

Nature: Appeal from the Decision of the Trial Court making defendant therein, now appellant Agapito Fuellas, the father of the minor who caused the injuries to Pepito Cadano, also a minor, liable under Art. 2180 of the new Civil Code for damages. Facts: Pepito Cadano and Rico Fuellas, son of defendant-appellant Agapito Fuellas, were both 13 years old, on September 16, 1954. They were classmates at St. Mary's High School, Dansalan City. They had a quarrel that lead to Pepitos injury, his right arm was broken after Rico pushed him on the ground. It is contended that in the decision of the Court of Appeals, the petitioner-appellant was ordered to pay damages for the deliberate injury caused by his son; that the said court held the petitioner liable pursuant to par. 2 of Art. 2180 of the Civil Code, in connection with Art. 2176 of the same Code; that according to the last article, the act of the minor must be one wherein "fault or negligence" is present; and that there being no fault or negligence on the part of petitioner-appellant's minor son, but deliberate intent, the above mentioned articles are not applicable, for the existence of deliberate intent in the commission of an act negatives the presence of fault or negligence in its commission. Appellant, therefore, submits that the appellate Court erred in holding him liable for damages for the deliberate criminal act of his minor son. Issue: WON the father is liable civilly for the criminal act of his son? Held: Yes. In an earlier case (Exconde vs. Capuno, et al., G.R. No. L-10132, prom. June 29, 1957), holding the defendants jointly and severally liable with his minor son Dante for damages, arising from the criminal act committed by the latter, this tribunal gave the following reasons for the rule: The civil liability which the law imposes upon the father and, in case of his death or incapacity, the mother, for any damages that may be caused by the minor children who live with them, is obvious. This is a necessary consequence of the parental authority they exercise over them which imposes upon the parents the "duty of supporting them, keeping them in their company, educating them in proportion to their means", while on the other hand, gives them the "right to correct and punish them in moderation" (Arts. 134 and 135, Spanish Civil Code). The only way by which they can relieve themselves of this liability is if they prove that they exercised all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent the damage (Art. 1903, last paragraph, Spanish Civil Code). This, defendants failed to prove. In another case, Salen and Salbanera vs. Jose Balce, the defendant Balce was the father of a minor Gumersindo Balce, below 18 years of age who was living with him. Gumersindo was found guilty of homicide for having killed Carlos Salen, minor son of plaintiffs. The trial court rendered judgment dismissing the case, stating that the civil liability of the minor son of defendant arising from his criminal liability must be determined under the provisions of the Revised Penal Code and not under Art. 2180 of the new Civil Code. In reversing the decision, this tribunal held: It is true that under Art. 101 of the Revised Penal Code, a father is made civilly liable for the acts committed by his son only if the latter is an imbecile, an insane, under 9 years of age, or over 9 but under 15 years of age, who acts without discernment, unless

GUTIERREZ VS GUTIERREZ MALCOLM; September 23, 1931


Nature: an action brought by the plaintiff in the Court of First Instance of Manila against the five defendants, to recover damages in the amount of P10,000, for physical injuries suffered as a result of an automobile accident. Facts: A passenger truck and an automobile of private ownership collided while attempting to pass each other on the Talon bridge on the Manila South Road in the municipality of Las Pias, Province of Rizal. The truck was driven by the chauffeur Abelardo Velasco, and was owned by Saturnino Cortez. The automobile was being operated by Bonifacio Gutierrez, a lad 18 years of age, and was owned by Bonifacio's father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Manuel Gutierrez. At the time of the collision, the father was not in the car, but the

SALEN V. BALCE

torts & damages


mother, together will several other members of the Gutierrez family, seven in all, were accommodated therein. Narcisso Gutierrez was a passenger of the bus. He had a fracture on his right leg. It was conceded that the collision was caused by negligence pure and simple. But, Narcisso Gutierrez blames both the bus and the car while the truck blames the car and the car in turn blames the truck. the youth Bonifacio was in incompetent chauffeur, that he was driving at an excessive rate of speed, and that, on approaching the bridge and the truck, he lost his head and so contributed by his negligence to the accident. The guaranty given by the father at the time the son was granted a license to operate motor vehicles made the father responsible for the acts of his son. Based on these facts, pursuant to the provisions of article 1903 of the Civil Code, the father alone and not the minor or the mother, would be liable for the damages caused by the minor. Issue: 1. 2. Held: 1. WON the father of Bonifacio (car) is liable. WON the owner of the truck is liable. Yes. In the United States, it is uniformly held that the head of a house, the owner of an automobile, who maintains it for the general use of his family is liable for its negligent operation by one of his children, whom he designates or permits to run it, where the car is occupied and being used at the time of the injury for the pleasure of other members of the owner's family than the child driving it. The theory of the law is that the running of the machine by a child to carry other members of the family is within the scope of the owner's business, so that he is liable for the negligence of the child because of the relationship of master and servant. Yes. The liability of Saturnino Cortez, the owner of the truck, and of his chauffeur Abelardo Velasco rests on a different basis, namely, that of contract. The reason for this conclusion reaches to the findings of the trial court concerning the position of the truck on the bridge, the speed in operating the machine, and the lack of care employed by the chauffeur. In its broader aspects, the case is one of two drivers approaching a narrow bridge from opposite directions, with neither being willing to slow up and give the right of way to the other, with the inevitable result of a collision and an accident

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larger than foot-pedaled four wheeled conveyances. It was error on the part of the CA to have disturbed the determination of the RTC which it had previously affirmed. Also, it was an error to increase the expenses without increasing the gross income. It stands to reason that if his annual personal expenses should increase because of the escalating price of gas which is a key expenditure in Roberto R. Luna's social standing [a statement which lacks complete basis], it would not be unreasonable to suppose that his income would also increase considering the manifold sources thereof 2. YES Ratio: The attorney's fees were awarded in the concept of damages in a quasi-delict case and under the circumstances, interest as part thereof may be adjudicated at the discretion of the court. (The attys fees should accrue interest from the date of filing of the compliant.) Obiter: The Dela Rosas invoke the ruling in Elcano v Hilll, where the court held that A2180 applied to Atty. Hill nothwithstanding the emancipation by marriage of his son, but since the son had attained majority, as a matter of equity, the liability of Atty. Hill became merely subsidiarily to that of his son. The Dela Rosas now invoke that the father should also be held only subsidiarily. To this contention, the court is unwilling to apply equity instead of strict law because to do so will not serve the ends of justice. Luis is abroad and beyond the reach of Philippine Courts. Also, he has no property in the Phils or elsewhere. Disposition: resolution of CA SET ASIDE, reinstating the earlier decision with slight modification regarding the award of attys fees.

FACTS: Roberto Luna, a businessman, was killed in a vehicular collision (between Luna, driving a gokart, and Luis dela Rosa, 13 years old, driving a Toyota car without a license) at a gokart practice area. Heirs of Luna brought a suit for damages against Luis and his father, which the CFI ruled in favor of the Lunas, awarding P1,650,000 as unearned net earnings of Luna, P12,000 compensatory damages, and P50,000 for loss of his companionship (come on!!), with legal interest from date of the decision, and attorneys fees of P50,000 (no interest mentioned). (Note: father and son solidarily liable for damages.) The Dela Rosas appealed in the CA, which affirmed in toto the RTC. In a MFR filed by the Dela Rosas, the CA modified the decision, this time reducing the unearned income to P450,000. Both parties filed separate petitions for review in the SC. Petition of the Dela Rosas was denied for lack of merit. The instant petition is the one filed by Lunas, contending that the CA erred in reducing the award for unearned income, and that the award for attys fees should include legal interest. Pending the decision, the SC came out with a resolution ordering the Dela Rosas, in the interest of justice (since the death took place in 1970, and 15 years after the process of litigation is still not over), to pay the Lunas P450,000 for unearned net earnings, P12,000 compensatory damages, P50,000 for loss of companionship, all with legal interest, and attys fees of P50,000, within 30 days. The Dela Rosas failed to pay the amounts, saying that they had no cash money. The writ of execution produced only a nominal amount. In the meantime, Luis is already of age, married, with 2 kids, and living in Spain but only causally employed (His compensation is hardly enough to support his family. He has no assets of his own as yet). ISSUES: 1. WON the CA erred in reducing the unearned income 2. WON the award for attys fees should have legal interest HELD: 1. YES Ratio: The reduction of the award of net unearned earnings had no basis, thus is void. Reasoning: the RTC based its computation of the net unearned earnings on 2 factors: life expectancy of the deceased of another 30 years, and an annual net income of P55,000 (P75,000 gross income less P20,000 personal expenses). In coming out with the life expectancy, RTC considered the age and health of the deceased. However, the CA modified this by factoring in the engagement of Luna in car racing, thus lowering the life expectancy to only 10 years. WRT to the gross income, RTC considered the various positions the deceased held at the time of his death, and the trend of his earnings over the span of his last few years, thus coming up with a potential gross income of P75,000. However, the CA increased the annual personal expenses to P30,000, due to the escalating gasoline expenses, thus lowering the net annual unearned income to P45,000. CA erred in ruling that the engagement with car racing reduced the life expectancy. There is nothing on record that supports the claim that the car racing was a dangerous and risky activity tending to shorten his life expectancy. That Luna was engaged in go-kart racing is the correct statement but then go-kart racing cannot be categorized as a dangerous sport for go-karts are extremely low slung, low powered vehicles, only slightly

2.

LIBI V INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT (SPS GOTIONG) 214 SCRA 16 REGALADO; September 18,1992
NATURE Petition for review of the decision of the then Intermediate Appellate Court. FACTS - respondent spouses are the legitimate parents of Julie Ann Gotiong who, at the time of the deplorable incident which took place and from which she died on January 14,1979, was an 18-year old first year commerce student of the University of San Carlos, Cebu City; while petitioners are the parents of Wendell Libi, then a minor between 18 and 19 years of age living with his aforesaid parents, and who also died in the same event on the same date. - More than 2 years before their deaths, Julie Ann Gotiong and Wendell Libi were sweethearts until December, 1978 when Julie Ann broke up with Wendell after she found him to be sadistic and irresponsible. - January, 1979 - Wendell kept pestering Julie Ann with demands for reconciliation but the Julie refused, prompting him to resort to threats against her. In order to avoid him, Julie Ann stayed in the house of her best friend, Malou Alfonso

Disposition In consonance with the foregoing rulings, the judgment appealed from will be modified, and the plaintiff will have judgment in his favor against the defendants Manuel Gutierrez, Abelardo Velasco, and Saturnino Cortez, jointly and severally, for the sum of P5,000, and the costs of both instances.

RODRIGUEZ-LUNA V IAC (DELA ROSA) 135 SCRA 242 ABAD SANTOS; February 28, 1985
NATURE: Petition to review a decision of CA

torts & damages


- January 14,1979 - Julie and Wendell died from a single gunshot wound inflicted with the same firearm licensed under Cresencio Libi, father of Wendell - both set of parents came up with versions of the story Gotiongs: > Wendell caused her death by shooting her and thereafter turning the gun on himself to commit suicide Libis: > an unknown third party, whom Wendell may have displeased or antagonized by reason of his work as a narcotics informer of the Constabulary Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU), must have caused Wendell's death and then shot Julie Ann to eliminate any witness and thereby avoid identification - CFI Cebu: Gotiongs filed civil case against the parents of Wendell to recover damages arising from the latter's vicarious liability under A2180 CC. CFI dismissed the complaint for insufficiency of the evidence. - IAC: CFI decision set aside and found Libis subsidiarily liable ISSUE WON A2180 CC is applicable in making Libis liable for vicarious liability HELD YES Ratio The diligence of a good father of a family required by law in a parent and child relationship consists, to a large extent, of the instruction and supervision of the child. Had the defendants-appellees been diligent in supervising the activities of their son, Wendell, and in keeping said gun from his reach, they could have prevented Wendell from killing Julie Ann Gotiong. Therefore, appellants are liable under A2180 CC. Reasoning - undue emphasis was placed by the lower court on the absence of gunpowder or tattooing around the wound at the point of entry of the bullet. It should be emphasized, however, that this is not the only circumstance to be taken into account in the determination of whether it was suicide or not as the body was cleaned already in the funeral parlor - Amelita Libi, mother of Wendell, testified that her husband, Cresencio Libi, owns a gun which he kept in a safety deposit box inside a drawer in their bedroom. Each of these petitioners holds a key to the safety deposit box and Amelita's key is always in her bag, all of which facts were known to Wendell. They have never seen their son Wendell taking or using the gun. She admitted, however, that on that fateful night the gun was no longer in the safety deposit box. We, accordingly, cannot but entertain serious doubts that petitioner spouses had really been exercising the diligence of a good father of a family by safely locking the fatal gun away. Wendell could not have gotten hold thereof unless one of the keys to the safety deposit box was negligently left lying around or he had free access to the bag of his mother where the other key was. - A2180': The subsidiary liability of parents for damages caused by their minor children imposed by A2180 CC covers obligations wising from both quasi-delicts and criminal offenses.' - BUT Liability is not subsidiary BUT primary > if the liability of the parents for crimes and QDs of their minor children is subsidiary, they they can neither invoke nor be absolved of civil liability on the defense that they acted with the diligence of a good father of the family to prevent damages. But if the liability id direct and primary, the diligence would constitute a valid substantial defense. HENCE, LIABILITY OF PARENTS

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Reasoning- The act of Adelberto gave rise to a cause of action on quasi-delict against him under Article 2176. However, because of his minority, the provision of Article 2180 would be applicable. Article 2180 reads the obligation imposed by Article 2176 is demandable not only for ones own acts or omissions, but also for those of persons for whom one is responsible The father and, incase of his death or incapacity, the mother are responsible for the damages caused by the children who live in their company The responsibility treated of in this Article shall cease when the person herein mentioned prove that they observed all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage. - The principle of parental liability is designated as vicarious liability or the doctrine of imputed liability under the Anglo-American tort law. Thus, under this doctrine, a person is not only liable for torts committed by him also torts committed by others with whom he has a certain relationship and for whom he is responsibility. Thus parental liability is made a natural or logical consequence of the duties and responsibilities of the parents which include the instructing, controlling, and disciplining of the child. The presumption under law is that when a child under their care commits a tortuous act the parents were negligent in the performance of these duties and responsibilities. As stated, sufficient proof can be presented to overcome this presumption. Disposition Petition granted. Decision set aside.

FOR QDS OF THEIR MINOR KIDS AS CONTEMPLATED IN A2180 ID PRIMARY NOT SUBSIDIARY > applying A2194 (solidary liability of joint tortfeasors) the parent is also solidarily liable with the child. THE LIABILITY OF PARENTS FOR FELONIES IS LIKEWISE PRIMARY NOT SUBSIDIARY. A101 RPC SAYS SO > RULES: + for civil liability from crimes committed by minors under the legal authority and control or who live in the company of the parents: PRIMARY = premised on A101 RPC fot damages ex delicto by kids 9 or under or 9-15 but without discernment = premised on A2180 CC for kids 9-15 with discernment or 15-21 (now 18) + liability effected against father or mother? BOTH PARENTS AND THOSE WHO EXERCISE PARENTAL AUHTORITY OVER THE MINOR = youth welfare code = FC: responsibility of parents + for civil liability arising from QDs committed by minors: same rules in A2180 and A2182 Disposition Instant petition is DENIED and the assailed judgment of respondent Court of Appeals is hereby AFFIRMED

TAMARGO vs CA (Rubio, Bundoc) 209 SCRA 518 Feliciano, J; 1992


NATURE Appeal for review of CA decision FACTS - On October 20, 1982, Adelberto Bundoc, then aged ten, shot Jennifer Tamargo with an air rifle causing injuries which resulted in her death. He was charged with reckless imprudence resulting to homicide but was acquitted and exempted from criminal liability ob the ground that he had acted without discernment. The adopting and natural parents of Jennifer filed a civil complaint for damages against the parents of Bundoc. - The parents of Adelberto claimed that they are not the indispensable party in the action as their son adopted by the spouses Rapisura on November 18, 1982 via an adoption decree granted by the CFI of Ilocos Sur. The trial Court agreed with the respondents and dismissed the complaint. - The case contained procedural questions which were raised in the appeal. The SC however decided to hear the appeal based on substantial justice. ISSUE - WON the spouses Bundoc were indispensable party to the tort action under Article 2180 of the Civil Code. HELD- Yes. The Court held that parental authority did not retroactively transfer to and vested in the adopting parents at the time the shooting incident occurred. The adopting parents had no actual or physical custody of Adelberto at the time of the incident as they were then in the US were they live. To do so and hold them liable for the tortious act when be unfair and unconscionable.

MERCADO v. COURT OF APPEALS AND QUISUMBING L-14342 LABRADOR; May 30, 1960
NATURE This is a petition to review a decision of the Court of Appeals FACTS - Plaintiff-appellant Manuel Quisumbing, Jr. is the son of his co-plaintiffappellants Ana Pineda and Manuel L. Quisumbing, while Augusto Mercado is the son of defendant-appellee Ciriaco L. Mercado, Manuel Quisumbing, Jr. and Augusto Mercado were classmates in the Lourdes Catholic School on Kanlaon, Quezon City. - A "pitogo", which figures prominently in this case, may be described as an empty nutshell used by children as a piggy bank. On February 22, 1956, Augusto Mercado and Manuel Quisumbing, Jr. quarrelled over a "pitogo". As a result, Augusto wounded Manuel, Jr. on the right cheek with a piece of razor. ISSUES 1. WON the teacher or head of the school should be held responsible instead of the of the father since the incident of the inflicting of the wound on respondent occurred in a Catholic School (during recess time) 2. WON the moral damages fixed at P2,000 are excessive. HELD

torts & damages


1. NO. The last paragraph of Article 2180 of the Civil Code, upon which petitioner rests his claim that the school where his son was studying should be made liable, is as follows: ART. 2180. . . . Lastly, teachers or heads of establishments of arts and trades shall be liable for damages caused by their pupils and students or apprentices, so long as they remain in their custody. - It would be seem that the clause "so long as they remain in their custody," contemplates a situation where the pupil lives and boards with the teacher, such that the control, direction and influence on the pupil supersedes those of the parents. In these circumstances the control or influence over the conduct and actions of the pupil would pass from the father and mother to the teacher; and so would the responsibility for the torts of the pupil. - Such a situation does not appear in the case at bar; the pupils appear to go to school during school hours and go back to their homes with their parents after school is over. The situation contemplated in the last paragraph of Article 2180 does not apply, nor does paragraph 2 of said article, which makes father or mother responsible for the damages caused by their minor children. 2. YES. It is possible that the Court of Appeals may have considered Augusto Mercado responsible for or guilty, of a quasi-delict causing physical injuries, within the meaning of paragraph 2 of Article 2219. Even if we assume that said court considered Mercado guilty of a quasi-delict when it imposed the moral damages, yet the facts found by said court indicate that Augusto's resentment, which motivated the assault, was occasioned by the fact that Manuel, Jr. had tried to intervene in or interfere with the attempt of Mercado to get "his pitogo from Renato." It is, therefore, apparent that the proximate cause of the injury caused to Quisumbing was Quisumbing's own fault or negligence for having interfered with Mercado while trying to get the pitogo from another boy. (Art. 2179, Civil Code.) After considering all the facts as found by the Court of Appeals, we find that none of the cases mentioned in Article 2219 of the Civil Code, which authorizes the grant of moral damages, was shown to have existed. Consequently, the grant of moral damages is not justified.

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arts and trades are liable for any damage caused by their pupils or apprentices while they are under their custody, but this provision only applies to an institution of arts and trades and not to any academic educational institution" - phrase used in the cited article "so long as (the students) remain in their custody" means the protective and supervisory custody that the school and its heads and teachers exercise over the pupils and students for as long as they are at attendance in the school, including recess time. There is nothing in the law that requires that for such liability to attach the pupil or student who commits the tortious act must live and board in the school, as erroneously held by the lower court, and the dicta in Mercado on which it relied, must now be deemed to have been set aside by the present decision. - At any rate, the law holds them liable unless they relieve themselves of such liability, in compliance with the last paragraph of Article 2180, Civil Code, by "(proving) that they observed all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage." In the light of the factual findings of the lower court's decision, said defendants failed to prove such exemption from liability. b. NO (Brillantes as a mere member of the school's board of directors and the school) itself cannot be held similarly liable, since it has not been properly impleaded as party defendant - the school had been incorporated since and therefore the school itself, as thus incorporated, should have been brought in as party defendant. DISPOSITION The judgment appealed from is modified so as to provide as follows: . 1. Sentencing the Daffon, Valenton and Quibulue jointly and severally to pay plaintiffs as heirs of the deceased Dominador Palisoc (a) P12,000.00 for the death of Dominador Palisoc; (b) P3,375.00 for actual and compensatory expenses; (c) P5,000.00 for moral, damages; (d) P10,000.00 for loss of earning power and (e) P2,000.00 for attorney's fee, plus the costs of this action in both instances; 2. absolving defendant Antonio C. Brillantes from the complaint; and 3. dismissing defendants' counterclaims. . REYES, J.B.L., J., concurring: -I would like to clarify that the argument of the dissenting opinion of the effect that the responsibility of teachers and school officers under Articles 2180 should be limited to pupils who are minors is not in accord with the plain text of the law. - Examination of the article shows that where the responsibility prescribed therein is limited to illegal acts during minority, the article expressly so provides, as in the case of the parents and of the guardians. It is natural to expect that if the law had intended to similarly restrict the civil responsibility of the other categories of persons enumerated in the article, it would have expressly so stated. The fact that it has not done so indicates an intent that the liability be not restricted to the case of persons under age. Further, it is not without significance that - finally, that while in the case of parents and guardians, their authority and supervision over the children and wards end by law upon the latter reaching majority age, the authority and custodial supervision over pupils exist regardless of the age of the latter. MAKALINTAL, J., dissenting: - I see no reason to depart from the doctrine laid down by this Court in Mercado v. Court of Appeals. I think it is highly unrealistic and conducive to unjust results, considering the size of the enrollment in many of our educational institutions, academic and non-academic, as well as the temper,

at them. Daffon made a remark to the effect that Palisoc was acting like a foreman. Because of this remark Palisoc slapped slightly Daffon on the face. Daffon, in retaliation, gave Palisoc a strong flat blow on the face, which was followed by other fist blows on the stomach. Palisoc retreated apparently to avoid the fist blows, but Daffon followed him and both exchanged blows until Palisoc stumbled on an engine block which caused him to fall face downward. Palisoc became pale and fainted. First aid was administered to him but he was not revived, so he was immediately taken to a hospital. He never regained consciousness; finally he died. - Defendants were: Antonio C. Brillantes, at the time when the incident occurred was a member of the Board of Directors of the institute; Teodosio Valenton, the president thereof; Santiago M. Quibulue, instructor of the class to which the deceased belonged; and Virgilio L. Daffon, a fellow student of the deceased. - At the beginning the Manila Technical Institute was a single proprietorship, but lately, it was duly incorporated. - the trial court found defendant Daffon liable for the quasi delict under Article 2176 of the Civil Code. - The trial court, however, absolved from liability the three other defendantsofficials of the Manila Technical Institute, in this wise: In the opinion of the Court, this article(art.2180) of the Code is not applicable to the case at bar, since this contemplates the situation where the control or influence of the teachers and heads of school establishments over the conduct and actions by the pupil supersedes those of the parents...The clause "so long as they remain in their custody" contemplated a situation where the pupil lives and boards with the teacher, such that the control or influence on the pupil supersedes those of the parents...There is no evidence that the accused Daffon lived and boarded with his teacher or the other defendant officials of the school. ISSUE WON the school officials are jointly and severally liable as tortfeasors with Daffon. HELD a. YES (head and teacher of the Manila Technical Institute, Valenton and Quibulue, respectively) Ratio The rationale of such liability of school heads and teachers for the tortious acts of their pupils and students, so long as they remain in their custody, is that they stand, to a certain extent, as to their pupils and students, in loco parentis and are called upon to "exercise reasonable supervision over the conduct of the child." In the law of torts, the governing principle is that the protective custody of the school heads and teachers is mandatorily substituted for that of the parents, and hence, it becomes their obligation as well as that of the school itself to provide proper supervision of the students' activities during the whole time that they are at attendance in the school, including recess time, as well as to take the necessary precautions to protect the students in their custody from dangers and hazards that would reasonably be anticipated, including injuries that some student themselves may inflict willfully or through negligence on their fellow students. Reasoning - The lower court based its legal conclusion expressly on the Court's dictum in Mercado vs. Court of Appeals, that "(I)t would seem that the clause "so long as they remain in their custody," contemplates a situation where the pupil lives and boards with the teacher, such that the control, direction and influence. It is true that under the law abovequoted, teachers or directors of

PALISOC VS. BRILLANTES 41 SCRA 548 TEEHANKEE; October 4, 1971


NATURE An appeal in forma pauperis on pure questions of law from a decision of the CFI Manila. FACTS - Palisoc spouses as parents of their 16-year old son, Dominador Palisoc, and a student in automotive mechanics at the Manila Technical Institute filed the action below for damages arising from the death of their son at the hands of a fellow student, defendant Virgilio L. Daffon, at the laboratory room of the said Institute. - the deceased Dominador Palisoc and the defendant Virgilio L. Daffon were classmates, and one afternoon, they, together with another classmate Desiderio Cruz were in the laboratory room located on the ground floor. At that time the classes were in recess. Desiderio Cruz and Virgilio L. Daffon were working on a machine while Dominador Palisoc was merely looking on

torts & damages


attitudes and often destructive activism of the students, to hold their teachers and/or the administrative heads of the schools directly liable for torts committed by them. - It would demand responsibility without commensurate authority, rendering teachers and school heads open to damage suits for causes beyond their power to control. - one other factor constrains me to dissent. The opinion of the majority states: "Here, the parents of the student at fault, defendant Daffon, are not involved, since Daffon was already of age at the time of the tragic incident." Note that for parental responsibility to arise the children must be minors who live in their company...it stands to reason that (1) the clause "so long as they remain in their custody" as used in reference to teachers and school heads should be equated with the phrase "who live in their company" as used in reference to parents; and (2) that just as parents are not responsible for damages caused by their children who are no longer minors, so should teachers and school heads be exempt from liability for the tortious acts of their students in the same age category.

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civil liability in this case arose from a crime, which they did not commit. Since it was a civil case, respondent school claims that a demand should have been made by the plaintiff rendering it premature to bring an action for damages against respondent school. MTD was granted by the CA. - Petitioner mover to reconsider the Order of Dismissal. Motion was denied due to insufficient justification to disturb ruling. ISSUE WON the Art 2180 CC13 applies to academic institutions HELD It is unnecessary to answer the issue. What the petitioner wants to know is WON the school or the university itself is liable. The answer is no since the provision speaks of teachers or heads Dispositive WHEREFORE, this Petition is DISMISSED for lack of merit.

Thus, for injuries caused by the student, the teacher and not the parent shall be held responsible if the tort was committed within the premises of the school at any time when its authority could be validly exercised over him. In any event, the school may be held to answer for the acts of its teacher or the head thereof under the general principle of respondent superior, but it may exculpate itself from liability by proof that it had exercised the diligence of a bonus paterfamilias. Such defense they had taken necessary precautions to prevent the injury complained of and thus be exonerated from liability imposed by Art 2180. Basis of teachers vicarious liability is, as such, they acting in Loco Parentis (in place of parents). However teachers are not expected to have the same measure of responsibility as that imposed on parent for their influence over the child is not equal in degree. x x x The parent can instill more lasting discipline more lasting disciple on the child than the teacher and so should be held to a greater accountability than the teacher or the head for the tort committed by the child. As the teacher was not shown to have been negligent nor the school remised in the discharged of their duties, they were exonerated of liability. (Note the court view on increasing students activism likely causing violence resulting to injuries, in or out of the school premises J. Guttierez, Jr concurringly said many student x x x view some teachers as part of the bourgeois and or reactionary group whose advice on behavior deportment and other non-academic matters is not only resented but actively rejected. It seems most unfair to hold teacher liable on a presumption juris tantum of negligence for acts of students even under circumstances where strictly speaking there could be no in loco parentis relationship. The provision of Art 2180 NCC involved in this case has outlived its purpose. The court cannot make law, it can only apply the law with its imperfections. However the court can suggest that such a law should be amended or repealed.

AMADORA VS CA RECOLLETOS) 160 SCRA 315 CRUZ; April 15, 1988

(COLLEGIO

DE

SAN

JOSE-

YLARDE vs. GANCAYCO; 1988 July 29


NATURE Petition for review on certiorari

AQUINO

Facts: It was summer of 1972 Alfredo Amadora about to graduate at the Colegio de San Jose-Recoletes. Alfredo went to the school to submit his Report in Physic. While they were in the auditorium of their school, hewas shot to death by his classmate Pablito Daffon. ISSUE: WON Art 2180 is applicable. Held: Yes. Art 2180 NCC applies to all schools, academic or non-academic. Teachers are liable for acts of their student except where the school is technical in nature (arts and trade establishment) in which case the head thereof shall be answerable. There is really no substantial difference distinction between the academic and non-academic schools in so far as torts committed by their students are concerned. The same vigilance is expected from the teacher over the student under their control and supervision, whatever the nature of the school where he is teaching. x x x x The distinction no longer obtains at present. x x x The student is in the custody of the school authorities as long as he is under the control and influence of the school and within its premises, whether the semester has not ended, or has ended or has not yet begun. The term custody signifies that the student is within the control and influence of the school authorities. The teacher in charge is the one designated by the dean, principal, or other administrative superior to exercise supervision over the pupils or students in the specific classes or sections to which they are assigned. It is not necessary that at the time of the injury, the teacher is physically present and in a position to prevent it.

FACTS Private respondent Mariano Soriano was the principal of the Gabaldon Primary School and private respondent Edgardo Aquino was a teacher therein. At that time, the school was littered with several concrete blocks which were remnants of the old school shop that was destroyed in World War II. Realizing that the huge stones were serious hazards to the schoolchildren, another teacher by the name of Sergio Banez stated burying them all by himself. Deciding to help his colleague, private respondent Edgardo Aquino gathered eighteen of his male pupils, aged ten to eleven. Being their teacher-in-charge, he ordered them to dig beside a one-ton concrete block in order to make a hole wherein the stone can be buried. The work was left unfinished. The following day, also after classes, private respondent Aquino called four of the original eighteen pupils to continue the digging. These four pupils ---Reynaldo Alonso, Fransico Alcantara, Ismael Abaga and Novelito Ylarde, dug until the excavation was one meter and forty centimeters deep. At this point, private respondent Aquino alone continued digging while the pupils remained inside the pit throwing out the loose soil that was brought about by the digging. When the depth was right enough to accommodate the concrete block, private respondent Aquino and his four pupils got out of the hole. Then, said private respondent left the children to level the loose soil around the open hole while he went to see Banez who was about thirty meters away. Private respondent wanted to borrow from Banez the key to the school workroom where he could get some rope. Before leaving, private respondent Aquino allegedly told the children "not to touch the stone."

PASCO V CFI (ARANETA UNIVERSITY) 160 SCRA 785 PARAS; April 25, 1988
NATURE Petition for certiorari under RA5440 praying that judgment be rendered setting aside the questioned order dismissing the complaint as against the respondent school and denying the reconsideration of the questioned order of dismissal. FACTS - A group of students walking inside Araneta University were accosted and mauled by a group of Muslim students led by Abdul Karin Madidis alias Teng. Petitioner (Reynaldo) was subsequently stabbed by Teng requiring him to be hospitalized and to undergo surgery. - Petitioner filed a complaint for damages against Teng and Arante University based on Art 2190 CC - Respondent school filed a MTD claiming that the provision only applies to vocational schools and not to academic institutions. They also claim that the

"Lastly, teachers or heads of establishments of arts and trades shall be liable for damages caused by their pupils and students or apprentices, so long as they remain in their custody."
13

torts & damages


A few minutes after private respondent Aquino left, three of the four kids, Alonso, Alcantara and Ylarde, playfully jumped into the pit. Then, without any warning at all, the remaining Abaga jumped on top of the concrete block causing it to slide down towards the opening. Alonso and Alcantara were able to scramble out of the excavation on time but unfortunately for Ylarde, the concrete block caught him before he could get out, pinning him to the wall in a standing position. As a result thereof, Ylarde sustained injuries and died three (3) days later. Ylarde's parents, petitioners in this case, filed a suit for damages against both private respondents Aquino and Soriano. The lower court dismissed the complaint on the following grounds: (1) that the digging done by the pupils is in line with their course called Work Education; (2) that Aquino exercised the utmost diligence of a very cautious person; and (3) that the demise of Ylarde was due to his own reckless imprudence. ISSUE WON whether or not under Article 2176 and Article 2180 of the Civil Code, both private respondents can be held liable for damages. Article 2176 of the Civil Code provides: "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." On the other hand, the applicable provision of Article 2180 states: "Art. 2180. . . . xxx xxx xxx

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HELD NO. Jimmy B. Abon cannot be considered to have been "at attendance in the school," or in the custody of BCF, when he shot Napoleon Castro. Logically, therefore, petitioners cannot under Art. 2180 of the Civil Code be held solidarity liable with Jimmy B. Abon for damages resulting from his acts. Ratio: Under the penultimate paragraph of Art. 2180 of the Civil Code, teachers or heads of establishments of arts and trades are hable for "damages caused by their pupils and students or apprentices, so long as they remain in their custody." The rationale of such liability is that so long as the student remains in the custody of a teacher, the latter "stands, to a certain extent, in loco parentis [as to the student] and [is] called upon to exercise reasonable supervision over the conduct of the [student]." Likewise, "the phrase used in [Art. 2180 'so long as (the students) remain in their custody means the protective and supervisory custody that the school and its heads and teachers exercise over the pupils and students for as long as they are at attendance in the school, including recess time." Reasoning: a. The SC hold a contrary view to that espoused by the CA. According to the CA, while it is true that Abon was not attending any class or school function at the time of the shooting incident, which was at about 8 o'clock in the evening; but considering that Abon was employed as an armorer and property custodian of the BCF ROTC unit, he must have been attending night classes and therefore that hour in the evening was just about dismissal time for him or soon thereafter. The time interval is safely within the "recess time" that the trial court spoke of and envisioned by the Palisoc case, supra. In line with the case of Palisoc, 17 a student not "at attendance in the school" cannot be in "recess" thereat. A "recess," as the concept is embraced in the phrase "at attendance in the school," contemplates a situation of temporary adjournment of school activities where the student still remains within call of his mentor and is not permitted to leave the school premises, or the area within which the school activity is conducted. Recess by its nature does not include dismissal. Likewise, the mere fact of being enrolled or being in the premises of a school without more does not constitute "attending school" or being in the "protective and supervisory custody' of the school, as contemplated in the law. b. Jimmy B. Abon was supposed to be working in the armory with definite instructions from his superior, the ROTC Commandant, when he shot Napoleon Castro.

(1) failed to avail himself of services of adult manual laborers and instead utilized his pupils aged ten to eleven to make an excavation near the one-ton concrete stone which he knew to be a very hazardous task; (2) required the children to remain inside the pit even after they had finished digging, knowing that the huge block was lying nearby and could be easily pushed or kicked aside by any pupil who by chance may go to the perilous area; (3) ordered them to level the soil around the excavation when it was so apparent that the huge stone was at the brink of falling; (4) went to a place where he would not be able to check on the children's safety; and (5) left the children close to the excavation, an obviously attractive nuisance. (6) In ruling that the child Ylarde was imprudent, it is evident that the lower court did not consider his age and maturity. This should not be the case. The degree of care required to be exercised must vary with the capacity of the person endangered to care for himself. A minor should not be held to the same degree of care as an adult, but his conduct should be judged according to the average conduct of persons of his age and experience. The standard of conduct to which a child must conform for his own protection is that degree of care ordinarily exercised by children of the same age, capacity, discretion, knowledge and experience under the same or similar circumstances. Bearing this in mind, We cannot charge the child Ylarde with reckless imprudence. DISPOSITION Granted.

SALVOSA v. IAC (CASTRO) 166 SCRA 274 PADILLA, J.: October 5, 1988
FACTS Jimmy Abon, a commerce student of Baguio Colleges Foundation (BCF) and a duly appointed armorer of the BCF ROTC (under the control of AFP) was convicted of the crime of Homicide for shooting Napoleon Castro, a student of the University of Baguio on 3 March 1977, at around 8:00 p.m., in the parking space of BCF. BCF is both an academic and arts and trade Union and the ROTC Unit was under the control of AFP. Subsequently, the heirs of Napoleon Castro sued for damages, impleading Jimmy B. Abon, Roberto C. Ungos (ROTC Commandant Benjamin Salvosa (President and Chairman of the Board of BCF), Jesus Salvosa (Executive Vice President of BCF), Libertad D. Quetolio (Dean of the College of Education and Executive Trustee of BCF) and the Baguio Colleges Foundation Inc. as party defendants. After hearing, the Trial Court rendered a decision, (1) sentencing defendants Jimmy B. Abon, Benjamin Salvosa and Baguio Colleges Foundation, Inc., jointly and severally, to pay private respondents, as heirs of Napoleon Castro; (2) absolving the other defendants; and (3) dismissing the defendants' counterclaim for lack of merit. ISSUE WON petitioners can be held solidarity liable with Jimmy B. Abon for damages under Article 2180 of the Civil Code, as a consequence of the tortious act of Jimmy B. Abon.

"Lastly, teachers or heads of establishments of arts and trades shall be liable for damages caused by their pupils and students or apprentices, so long as they remain in their custody." HELD Only Aquino, the teacher, is liable. Ratio: As regards the principal, We hold that he cannot be made responsible for the death of the child Ylarde, he being the head of an academic school and not a school of arts and trades. Reasoning: This is in line with the Courts ruling in Amadora vs. Court of Appeals, wherein this Court thoroughly discussed the doctrine that under Article 2180 of the Civil Code, it is only the teacher and not the head of an academic school who should be answerable for torts committed by their students. This Court went on to say that in a school of arts and trades, it is only the head of the school who can be held liable. Ratio: Private respondent Aquino can be held liable under Article 2180 of the Civil Code as the teacher-in-charge of the children for being negligent in his supervision over them and his failure to take the necessary precautions to prevent any injury on their persons. Reasoning:

ST. FRANCIS HIGH SCHOOL v CA(Castillo/Cadiz) 194 SCRA 340 Paras, J.: Feb. 25, 1991
NATURE Petition for review of the decision of the CA FACTS -Ferdinand Castillo, then a freshman student at St. Francis HS wanted to join a school picnic at Talaan Beach, Quezon. His parents didnt allow him to go due to short notice but directed him to bring food to the teachers for the picnic and go straight home. However, he was persuaded by his teachers to go and later drowned in an attempt to rescue a drowning teacher. -his parents filed a complaint against St. Francis HS, represented by its principal, Illumin, and several teachers for damages incurred from the death

torts & damages


of their son, contending that it occurred due to petitioners failure to exercise proper diligence of a good father of the family. The TC found against the teachers as they had failed to exercise diligence by not testing the waters in which the children (12-13 yrs old) were to swim. Also, the male teachers who were to watch over the kids were not even in the area as they went off drinking. The TC dismissed the case against the principal and the teacher Cadorna as the former had not consented to the picnic which was not school sanctioned, and as the latter had her own class to supervise then and was not actually invited. -Both parties appealed to the CA. On the issue of the liability of St. Francis HS and the Illumin, the CA held that both are liable under Article 2176 taken together with the 1st, 4th, and 5th paragraphs of Article 2180. They cannot escape liability simply because it wasnt an extra-curricular activity of the HS. From the evidence, it was shown that the principal had known of the picnic from its planning stage and merely acquiesced to the holding of the event. As such, under Article 2180, both are jointly and severally liable w/ the teachers for the damages incurred as the negligence of the employees (teachers) gives rise to the presumption of negligence on the part of the owner/manager (St. Francis and the principal). Petitioners contend that the victims parents failed to prove by evidence that they didnt give their son consent to join the picnic. The Court finds this immaterial to the determination of the existence of their liability. Also, 2 of the teachers who arrived after the drowning were absolved from liability as they had satisfactorily explained their lateness and thus could not be said to have participated in the negligence attributed to the other teachers. Hence this petition. ISSUE (1) WON there was negligence attributable to the defendants (2) WON Art. 2180, in relation to 2176 is applicable (3) WON the award of exemplary and moral damages is proper HELD (1) NO. Petitioners are neither guilty of their own negligence or the negligence of people under them. At the outset, it should be noted that the victims parents allowed their son to join the picnic as evidenced by a mental and physical cross examination. -Mere knowledge by Illumin of the planning of the picnic does not show acquiescence or consent to it. If the CAs findings are to be upheld, employers will be forever exposed to the risk and danger of being hailed to Court to answer for the misdeeds or omissions of their employees even if such acts or omissions are committed while they are not in the performance of their duties. -No negligence can be attributable to the teachers as the presumption is overthrown by proof that they exercised diligence of a good father of the family. In fact, 2 P.E. teachers were invited as they were scout masters and had knowledge in First Aid and swimming. Life savers were brought in the event of such an accident. The records also show that the 2 P.E. teachers did all that was humanly possible to save the victim. (2) NO. The CA erred in applying Art. 2180, particularly par 4. For an employer to be held liable for the negligence of his employee, the act or omission which caused damage or prejudice must have occurred while an employee was in the performance of his assigned task. In the case at bar, the teachers were not in actual performance of their duties as the picnic was a purely private affair and not a school sanctioned activity.

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WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED. The Court of origin is hereby ordered to continue proceedings consistent with this ruling of the Court. Costs against the petitioners.

(3) Since petitioners were able to prove that they had exercised the diligence required of them, no moral or exemplary damages under Art. 2177 may be awarded in favor of respondent spouses. PREMISES CONSIDERED, the questioned decision is SET ASIDE

PSBA v CA (BENITEZ/BAUTISTA) 205 SCRA 729 Padilla, J.: Feb. 4, 1992


FACTS -Carlitos Bautista, enrolled in the 3rd year commerce course of PSBA, was stabbed and killed while on campus by assailants who were from outside the schools academic community. This prompted his parents to file suit with the RTC of Manila w/ Judge Ordonez-Benitez presiding for damages against PSBA and its corporate officers, alleging negligence, recklessness and lack of security precautions, means and methods before, during and after the attack of the victim. -PSBA sought to dismiss the case, alleging that since they were presumably sued under Art 2180, there was no cause of action since academic institutions are not subject to the said provision. -A motion to dismiss and a subsequent MFR were denied by the TC, yielding the same results upon appeal with the CA. Hence this petition. ISSUES (1) WON PSBA may be held liable under articles 2176 and 2180 HELD (1) NO. Because the circumstances of the present case evince a contractual relation between the parties, the rules on quasi-delict do not really govern; but the court has repeatedly held that the liability for a tort may still exist even when there is a contract. -Quoting Cangco v Manila Railroad: the mere fact that a person is bound to another by contract does not relieve him from extra-contractual liability to such person. When such a contractual relation exists the obligor may break the contract under such conditions that the same act which constitutes a breach of the contract would have constituted the source of an extracontractual obligation had no contract existed between the parties -Using the test in Cangco, a contractual relation is a condition sine qua non to PSBAs liability; hence, any finding of negligence would generally give rise to a breach of contractual obligation only. -When an academic institution accepts a student for enrollment, a contract is established between them, resulting in a bilateral obligation. The school is obliged to provide the student with an education, along with a safe atmosphere that promotes the undertaking of imparting knowledge. In turn, the student abides by the schools academic requirements and observes its rules and regulations. However, a school cannot be an insurer for its students against all risks; one can only expect it to employ the degree of diligence required by the nature of the obligation and corresponding to the circumstances of persons, time and place. - In the case at bar a finding is yet to be made as to whether the contract was breached due to PSBAs negligence in providing proper security measures. At this stage, the proceedings have yet to commence on the substance of the private respondents complaint and the record is bereft of all material facts which only the TC can determine.

SOLIMAN, JR. V JUDGE TUAZON 209 SCAR 47 FELICIANO, J; May 18, 1992
NATURE Civil complaint for damages FACTS - On August 13, 1982, while the plaintiff Maximo Soliman, Jr., a student of the defendant Republic Central Colleges (RCC), was in the campus premises thereof, the defendant, Jimmy Solomon, who was then in the premises of said school performing his duties as security guard under the employment of defendant R.L. Security Agency, Inc., without any provocation, shot the plaintiff on the abdomen. The plaintiff was confined in a hospital, and as per doctor's opinion, he may not be able to attend to his regular classes and will be incapacitated in the performance of his usual work for a duration of from three to four months. Petitioner, represented by his guardian, filed a civil complaint for damages against RCC, RL Security Agency and Solomon, - RCC filed a motion to dismiss, contending that the complaint stated no cause of action against it. It argued that it is free from any liability for the injuries sustained by petitioner student for the reason that it was not the employer of the security guard Solomon, and hence was not responsible for any wrongful act of Solomon. It further argued that Article 2180, 7th paragraph, of the Civil Code did not apply, since said paragraph holds teachers and heads of establishment of arts and trades liable for damages caused by their pupils and students or apprentices, while security guard Jimmy Solomon was not a pupil, student or apprentice of the school. - Resspondent Judge Ramon Tuazon granted RCCs motion to dismiss. Petitioners MFR was denied, Hence, this appeal. ISSUES 1. WON RCC is liable for damages under Articles 2180, as well as those of Articles 349, 350 and 352 of the Civil Code 2. WON RCC could be held liable upon any other basis in law, for the injury sustained by petitioner HELD 1. NO - Under Art. 2180, the obligation to respond for damage inflicted by one against another by fault or negligence exists not only for one's own act or omission, but also for acts or omissions of a person for whom one is by law responsible. Among the persons held vicariously responsible for acts or omissions of another person are the following: xxx xxx xxx Employers shall be liable for the damages caused by their employees and household helper, acting within the scope of their assigned tasks, even though the former are not engaged in any business or industry. xxx xxx xxx Lastly, teachers or heads of establishments of arts and trades shall be liable for damages caused by their pupils, their students or apprentices, so long as they remain in their custody. - The first paragraph quoted above offers no basis for holding RCC liable for the alleged wrongful acts the of security guard Solomon inflicted upon Soliman, Jr. RCC was not the employer of Solomon. The employer of

torts & damages


Solomon was the R.L. Security Agency Inc., while the school was the client of the latter. It is settled that where the security agency, as here, recruits, hires and assigns the work of its watchmen or security guards, the agency is the employer of such guards or watchmen. Liability for illegal or harmful acts committed by the security guards attaches to the employer agency, and not to the clients of such agency. There being no employer-employee relationship between RCC and Solomon, petitioner cannot impose vicarious liability upon the RCC for the acts of Solomon. - Since there is no question that Solomon was not a pupil or student or an apprentice of the Colleges, he being in fact an employee of the R.L. Security Agency Inc., the other above-quoted paragraph of Article 2180 of the Civil Code is similarly not available for imposing liability upon the RCC for the acts of Solomon. - The relevant portions of the other Articles of the Civil Code invoked by petitioner are as follows: Art. 349. The following persons shall exercise substitute parental authority: xxx xxx xxx (2) Teachers and professors; xxx xxx xxx (4) Directors of trade establishments with regard to apprentices; xxx xxx xxx Art. 350. The persons named in the preceding article shall exercise reasonable supervision over the conduct of the child. xxx xxx xxx Art. 352. The relations between teacher and pupil, professor and student are fixed by government regulations and those of each school or institution. In no case shall corporal punishment be countenanced. The teacher or professor shall cultivate the best potentialities of the heart and mind of the pupil or student." - In Palisoc v. Brillantes, the Court held the owner and president of a school of arts and trades known as the Manila Technical Institute responsible in damages for the death of Palisoc, a student of that Institute, which resulted from fist blows delivered by Daffon, another student of the Institute. It will be seen that the facts of Palisoc v. Brillantes brought it expressly within the 7th paragraph of Article 2180, quoted above; but those facts are entirely different from the facts existing in the instant case. - Persons exercising substitute parental authority are made responsible for damage inflicted upon a third person by the child or person subject to such substitute parental authority. In the instant case, Solomon who committed allegedly tortious acts resulting in injury to petitioner, was not a pupil, student or apprentice of the Republic Central Colleges; the school had no substitute parental authority over Solomon. 2. YES - In the case of PSBA v CA, the Court held that Article 2180 of the Civil Code was not applicable where a student had been injured by one who was an outsider or by one over whom the school did not exercise any custody or control or supervision. At the same time, however, the court stressed that an implied contract may be held to be established between a school which accepts students for enrollment, on the one hand, and the students who are enrolled, on the other hand, which contract results in obligations for both parties. It held: When an academic institution accepts students for enrollment, there is established a contract between them, resulting in bilateral obligations which parties are bound to comply with. For its part, the school undertakes to provide the student with an education that would presumably suffice to equip him with the necessary tools and skills to pursue higher education or a profession. On the other hand, the student covenants to abide

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Carpitanos sued the school, James Daniel II, his parents, and Vivencio Villanueva. -TC: absolved Villanueva and James Daniel II, held parents and school liable -CA: school liable under A218 and 219, FC, finding that school was negligent in letting a minor drive the vehicle without a teacher accompanying them. ISSUE (regarding liability of St. Marys Academy) WON St. Marys Academy should be held liable for death of Sherwin Carpitanos, and therefore, liable for damages HELD NO. The negligence of petitioner St. Marys Academy was only a remote cause of the accident. Between the remote cause and the injury, there intervened the negligence of the minors parents or the detachment of the steering wheel guide of the jeep. Ratio. For the school to be liable, it must be shown that the injury for which recovery is sought must be the legitimate consequence of the wrong done; the connection between the negligence and the injury must be a direct and natural sequence of events, unbroken by intervening efficient causes. Reasoning. The Carpitanos failed to prove that the negligence of the school was the proximate cause of the death of the victim. -The cause of the accident was not the recklessness of James Daniel II but the mechanical defect in the jeep of Vivencio Villanueva. -Respondents did not present any evidence to show that the proximate cause of the accident was the negligence of the school authorities, or the reckless driving of James Daniel II so reliance on A219 is unfounded. -There was no evidence that petitioner school allowed the minor James Daniel II to drive the jeep of respondent Vivencio Villanueva. It was Ched Villanueva was in possession and in control of the jeep, and was in fact the one who allowed James Daniel II to drive the jeep. -Liability for the accident, whether caused by the negligence of the minor driver or mechanical detachment of the steering wheel guide of the jeep, must be pinned on the minors parents primarily. The negligence of petitioner St. Marys Academy was only a remote cause of the accident. Between the remote cause and the injury, there intervened the negligence of the minors parents or the detachment of the steering wheel guide of the jeep.Considering that the negligence of the minor driver or the detachment of the steering wheel guide of the jeep owned by respondent Villanueva was an event over which petitioner St. Marys Academy had no control, and which was the proximate cause of the accident, petitioner may not be held liable for the death resulting from such accident. - It is not the school, but the registered owner of the vehicle who shall be held responsible for damages for the death of Sherwin Carpitanos. Disposition. WHEREFORE, the Court REVERSES and SETS ASIDE the decision of the Court of Appeals[18] and that of the trial court.[19] The Court remands the case to the trial court for determination of the liability of defendants, excluding petitioner St. Marys Academy, Dipolog City. No costs. SO ORDERED.

by the school's academic requirements and observe its rules and regulations.Institutions of learning must also meet the implicit or 'built-in' obligation of providing their students with an atmosphere that promotes or assists in attaining its primary undertaking of imparting knowledge. Certainly, no student can absorb the intricacies of physics or higher mathematics or explore the realm of the arts and other sciences when bullets are flying or grenades exploding in the air or where there looms around the school premises a constant threat to life and limb. Necessarily, the school must ensure that adequate steps are taken to maintain peace and order within the campus premises and to prevent the breakdown thereof. - It was also pointed out in said case that: "In the circumstances obtaining in the case at bar, however, there is, as yet, no finding that the contract between school and Bautista had been breached thru the former's negligence in providing proper security measures. This would be for the trial court to determine. And, even if there be a finding of negligence, the same could give rise generally to a breach of contractual obligation only. Using the test of Cangco, supra, the negligence of the school would not be relevant absent a contract. In fact, that negligence becomes material only because of the contractual relation between PSBA and Bautista. In other words, a contractual relation is a condition sine qua non to the school's liability. The negligence of the school cannot exist independently of the contract, unless the negligence occurs under the circumstances set out in Article 21 of the Civil Code. - In the PSBA case, the trial court had denied the school's motion to dismiss the complaint against it, and both the CA and this Court affirmed the trial court's order. In the case at bar, the court a quo granted the motion to dismiss filed by RCC, upon the assumption that petitioner's cause of action was based, and could have been based, only on Art. 2180 of the Civil Code. As PSBA, however, states, acts which are tortious or allegedly tortious in character may at the same time constitute breach of a contractual or other legal obligation. Respondent trial judge was in serious error when he supposed that petitioner could have no cause of action other than one based on Article 2180 of the Civil Code. Respondent trial judge should not have granted the motion to dismiss but rather should have, in the interest of justice, allowed petitioner to prove acts constituting breach of an obligation ex contractu or ex lege on the part of RCC. Disposition GRANT DUE COURSE to the Petition, to treat the comment of respondent Colleges as its answer, and to REVERSE and SET ASIDE the Order granting the motion to dismiss the case.This case is REMANDED to the court a quo for further proceedings.

ST. MARYS ACADEMY VS. CARPITANOS PARDO, February 6, 2002


NATURE Appeal via certiorari from CA deci and resolution denying MFR FACTS (this case was already assigned in PFR) -Sherwin Carpitanos, together with James Daniel II (then 15, driving the jeep) and Ched Villanueva (then in possession and was driving the jeep, Grandson of Vivencio Villanueva - the owner of the jeep) and other companions were on their way to an enrollment drive for the Petitioner school when the vehicle turned turtle. It was found out that the steering wheel guide was detached.

PHIL RABBIT BUS LINES V PHIL-AM FORWARDERS 63 SCRA 231 AQUINO; March 25, 1975
NATURE Petition for review of CFI Tarlac decision

torts & damages


FACTS - PHIL RABBIT Bus Lines, Inc. and Felix PANGALANGAN filed a complaint for damages in an action based on quasi-delict or culpa aquiliana against PHIL-AMERICAN FORWARDERS, Inc., its manager BALINGIT and the driver, PINEDA. - It was alleged that Pineda drove recklessly a freight TRUCK, owned by PhilAm, along the natl highway at Sto. Tomas, Pampanga. The truck bumped the BUS driven by Pangalangan, owned by Phil Rabbit. Pangalangan suffered injuries and the bus was damaged and could not be used for 79 days. This deprived the company of earnings of about P8,600. - Among the defenses interposed by the defendants was that Balingit was not Pineda's employer. Balingit moved that the complaint against him be dismissed on the ground that the bus company and the bus driver had no cause of action against him. - CFI dismissed their complaint against BALINGIT on the ground that he was not the manager of an establishment contemplated in Art.2180 CC. - In the appeal, the bus company also argued that Phil-Am is merely a business conduit of Balingit because out of its capital stock with a par value of P41,200, Balingit and his wife had subscribed P40T. This implied that the veil of corporate fiction should be pierced and that Phil-Am and Balingit and his wife should be treated as one and the same civil personality. But this was not alleged in their complaint.* ISSUE WON the terms "employers" and "owners and managers of an establishment or enterprise" used in Art. 2180 NCC (Art.1903 OCC) embrace the manager of a corporation owning a truck (this is a novel and unprecedented legal issue!) HELD NO Vicarious Liability of Owners and Managers of Establishments: Art.2180 uses the term "manager" ("director" in the Spanish version) to mean "employer. - Hence, under the allegations of the complaint, no tortious or quasi-delictual liability can be fastened on Balingit as manager of Phil-American Forwarders, Inc., in connection with the vehicular accident because he himself may be regarded as an employee or dependiente of his employer, Phil-American Forwarders, Inc. * This issue was not raised in the lower court so it would be unfair to allow them to do so now. The case has to be decided on the basis of the pleadings filed in the trial court where it was assumed that Phil-Am has a personality separate and distinct from that of the Balingit spouses. Dispositive Lower courts order of dismissal is AFFIRMED.

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-We have consistently held that the liability of the registered owner of a public service vehicle, like petitioner Philtranco, for damages arising from the tortious acts of the driver is primary, direct, and joint and several or solidary with the driver. As to solidarity, Article 2194 expressly provides: the responsibility of two or more persons who are liable for a quasi-delict is solidary. -Since the employer's liability is primary, direct and solidary, its only recourse if the judgment for damages is satisfied by it is to recover what it has paid from its employee who committed the fault or negligence which gave rise to the action based on quasi-delict. Article 2181 of the Civil Code provides: Whoever pays for the damage caused by his dependents or employees may recover from the latter what he has paid or delivered in satisfaction of the claim. Disposition Appealed decision is affirmed. (with regard to this issue)

-Civil Case No. 373 was an action against herein petitioners for damages instituted by the heirs of Ramon A. Acuesta -Private respondents alleged that the petitioners were guilty of gross negligence, recklessness, violation of traffic rules and regulations, abandonment of victim, and attempt to escape from a crime Private Respondents Version -In the early morning of March 24, 1990, about 6:00 oclock, the victim Ramon A. Acuesta was riding in his easy rider bicycle along the Gomez Street -On the Magsaysay Blvd., defendant Philtranco Service Enterprises, Inc. (Philtranco for brevity) Bus No. 4025 driven by defendant Manilhig was being pushed by some persons in order to start its engine. -The Magsaysay Blvd. runs perpendicular to Gomez St. and the said Philtranco bus 4025 was heading in the general direction of the said Gomez Street. -As the bus was pushed, its engine started thereby the bus continued on its running motion and it occurred at the time when Ramon A. Acuesta who was still riding on his bicycle was directly in front of the said bus. -As the engine of the Philtranco bus started abruptly and suddenly, its running motion was also enhanced by the said functioning engine, thereby the subject bus bumped on the victim Ramon A. Acuesta who, as a result thereof fell and, thereafter, was run over by the said bus. Petitioners Version -Manilhig, in preparation for his trip back to Pasay City, warmed up the engine of the bus and made a few rounds within the city proper of Calbayog. -While the bus was slowly and moderately cruising along Gomez Street, the victim, who was biking towards the same direction as the bus, suddenly overtook two tricycles and swerved left to the center of the road. -The swerving was abrupt and so sudden that even as Manilhig applied the brakes and blew the bus horn, the victim was bumped from behind and run over by the bus. -Petitioners alleged that Philtranco exercised the diligence of a good father of a family in the selection and supervision of its employees, including petitioner Manilhig who had excellent record as a driver and had undergone months of rigid training before he was hired. -Petitioners further claimed that it was the negligence of the victim in overtaking two tricycles, without taking precautions such as seeing first that the road was clear, which caused the death of the victim **Trial Court ruled in favor of private respondents -Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the trial court, and denied MFR -Hence, this appeal ISSUE WON petitioner Philtranco is solidarily liable with Manilhig for damages HELD Yes. -Civil Case No. 373 is an action for damages based on quasi-delict under Article 217614 and 218015 of the Civil Code against petitioner Manilhig and his employer, petitioner Philtranco, respectively.

CASTILEX V. VASQUEZ Dec. 21, 1999. Davide


Facts: At around 1:30 to 2:00 in the morning, Romeo So Vasquez, was driving a Honda motorcycle around Fuente Osmea Rotunda. He was traveling counter-clockwise, (the normal flow of traffic in a rotunda) but without any protective helmet or goggles. He was also only carrying a Student's Permit to Drive at the time. Upon the other hand, Benjamin Abad [was a] manager of Appellant Castilex Industrial Corporation, registered owner [of] a Toyota Hi-Lux Pick-up with plate no. GBW-794. On the same date and time, Abad drove the said company car out of a parking lot but instead of going around the Osmea rotunda he made a short cut against [the] flow of the traffic in proceeding to his route to General Maxilom St. or to Belvic St. In the process, the motorcycle of Vasquez and the pick-up of Abad collided with each other causing severe injuries to the former. Abad stopped his vehicle and brought Vasquez to the Southern Islands Hospital and later to the Cebu Doctor's Hospital. Vasquez died at the Cebu Doctor's Hospital. It was there that Abad signed an acknowledgment of Responsible Party (Exhibit K) wherein he agreed to pay whatever hospital bills, professional fees and other incidental charges Vasquez may incur. After the police authorities had conducted the investigation of the accident, a Criminal Case was filed against Abad but which was subsequently dismissed for failure to prosecute. So, the present action for damages was commenced by Vicente Vasquez, Jr. and Luisa So Vasquez, parents of the deceased Romeo So Vasquez, against Jose Benjamin Abad
15Art.

PHILTRANCO V CA (HEIRS OF ACUESTA) 273 SCRA 562 DAVIDE; June 17, 1997
NATURE Appeal by certiorari from a decision of the CA FACTS

(limited to that involved in the outline)

14Art.

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

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. xxxxxxxxx The owners and managers of an establishment or enterprise are likewise responsible for damages caused by their employees in the service of the branches in which the latter are employed or on the occasion of their functions. xxxxxxxxx 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 industry. xxxxxxxxx The responsibility treated of in this article shall cease when the persons herein mentioned prove that they observed all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage

torts & damages


and Castilex Industrial Corporation. In the same action, Cebu Doctor's Hospital intervened to collect unpaid balance for the medical expense given to Romeo So Vasquez. Issue: WON an employer may be held vicariously liable for the death resulting from the negligent operation by a managerial employee of a company-issued vehicle. Held: Castilez is absolved from any liability. The negligence of ABAD is not an issue at this instance. Petitioner CASTILEX presumes said negligence but claims that it is not vicariously liable for the injuries and subsequent death caused by ABAD. Petitioner contends that the fifth paragraph of Article 2180 of the Civil Code should only apply to instances where the employer is not engaged in business or industry. Since it is engaged in the business of manufacturing and selling furniture it is therefore not covered by said provision. Instead, the fourth paragraph should apply. Petitioner's interpretation of the fifth paragraph is not accurate. The phrase "even though the former are not engaged in any business or industry" found in the fifth paragraph should be interpreted to mean that it is not necessary for the employer to be engaged in any business or industry to be liable for the negligence of his employee who is acting within the scope of his assigned task. A distinction must be made between the two provisions to determine what is applicable. Both provisions apply to employers: the fourth paragraph, to owners and managers of an establishment or enterprise; and the fifth paragraph, to employers in general, whether or not engaged in any business or industry. The fourth paragraph covers negligent acts of employees committed either in the service of the branches or on the occasion of their functions, while the fifth paragraph encompasses negligent acts of employees acting within the scope of their assigned task. The latter is an expansion of the former in both employer coverage and acts included. Negligent acts of employees, whether or not the employer is engaged in a business or industry, are covered so long as they were acting within the scope of their assigned task, even though committed neither in the service of the branches nor on the occasion of their functions. For, admittedly, employees oftentimes wear different hats. They perform functions which are beyond their office, title or designation but which, nevertheless, are still within the call of duty.This court has applied the fifth paragraph to cases where the employer was engaged in a business or industry such as truck operators and banks. The Court of Appeals cannot, therefore, be faulted in applying the said paragraph of Article 2180 of the Civil Code to this case. Under the fifth paragraph of Article 2180, whether or not engaged in any business or industry, an employer is liable for the torts committed by employees within the scope of his assigned tasks. But it is necessary to establish the employeremployee relationship; once this is done, the plaintiff must show, to hold the employer liable, that the employee was acting within the scope of his assigned task when the tort complained of was committed. It is only then that the employer may find it necessary to interpose the defense of due diligence in the selection and supervision of the employee. It is undisputed that ABAD was a Production Manager of petitioner CASTILEX at the time of the tort occurrence. As to whether he was acting within the scope of his assigned task is a question of fact, which the court a quo and the Court of Appeals resolved in the affirmative. Well-entrenched in our jurisprudence is the rule that the factual findings of the Court of Appeals are entitled to great respect, and even finality at times. This rule is, however, subject to exceptions such as when the

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the employee has left the direct route to his work or back home and is pursuing a personal errand of his own. III. Use of Employer's Vehicle Outside Regular Working Hours An employer who loans his motor vehicle to an employee for the latter's personal use outside of regular working hours is generally not liable for the employee's negligent operation of the vehicle during the period of permissive use, even where the employer contemplates that a regularly assigned motor vehicle will be used by the employee for personal as well as business purposes and there is some incidental benefit to the employer. Even where the employee's personal purpose in using the vehicle has been accomplished and he has started the return trip to his house where the vehicle is normally kept, it has been held that he has not resumed his employment, and the employer is not liable for the employee's negligent operation of the vehicle during the return trip. The foregoing principles and jurisprudence are applicable in our jurisdiction albeit based on the doctrine of respondeat superior, not on the principle of bonus pater familias as in ours. Whether the fault or negligence of the employee is conclusive on his employer as in American law or jurisprudence, or merely gives rise to the presumption juris tantum of negligence on the part of the employer as in ours, it is indispensable that the employee was acting in his employer's business or within the scope of his assigned task. ABAD was engaged in affairs of his own or was carrying out a personal purpose not in line with his duties at the time he figured in a vehicular accident. It was then about 2:00 a.m., way beyond the normal working hours. ABAD's working day had ended; his overtime work had already been completed. His being at a place which, as petitioner put it, was known as a "haven for prostitutes, pimps, and drug pushers and addicts," had no connection to petitioner's business; neither had it any relation to his duties as a manager. Rather, using his service vehicle even for personal purposes was a form of a fringe benefit or one of the perks attached to his position.

conclusion is grounded on speculations, surmises, or conjectures. Such exception obtain in the present case to warrant review by this Court of the finding of the Court of Appeals that since ABAD was driving petitioner's vehicle he was acting within the scope of his duties as a manager. On the issue of whether the private respondents have sufficiently established that ABAD was acting within the scope of his assigned tasks, ABAD, who was presented as a hostile witness, testified that at the time of the incident, he was driving a company-issued vehicle, registered under the name of petitioner. He was then leaving the restaurant where he had some snacks and had a chat with his friends after having done overtime work for the petitioner. No absolutely hard and fast rule can be stated which will furnish the complete answer to the problem of whether at a given moment, an employee is engaged in his employer's business in the operation of a motor vehicle, so as to fix liability upon the employer because of the employee's action or inaction; but rather, the result varies with each state of facts. The court a quo and the Court of Appeals were one in holding that the driving by a manager of a company-issued vehicle is within the scope of his assigned tasks regardless of the time and circumstances. The SC does not agree. The mere fact that ABAD was using a service vehicle at the time of the injurious incident is not of itself sufficient to charge petitioner with liability for the negligent operation of said vehicle unless it appears that he was operating the vehicle within the course or scope of his employment. It used the principles in American Jurisprudence on the employer's liability for the injuries inflicted by the negligence of an employee in the use of an employer's motor vehicle: I. Operation of Employer's Motor Vehicle in Going to or from Meals It has been held that an employee who uses his employer's vehicle in going from his work to a place where he intends to eat or in returning to work from a meal is not ordinarily acting within the scope of his employment in the absence of evidence of some special business benefit to the employer. Evidence that by using the employer's vehicle to go to and from meals, an employee is enabled to reduce his time-off and so devote more time to the performance of his duties supports the findings that an employee is acting within the scope of his employment while so driving the vehicle. II. Operation of Employer's Vehicle in Going to or from Work In the same vein, traveling to and from the place of work is ordinarily a personal problem or concern of the employee, and not a part of his services to his employer. Hence, in the absence of some special benefit to the employer other than the mere performance of the services available at the place where he is needed, the employee is not acting within the scope of his employment even though he uses his employer's motor vehicle. 14 cda The employer may, however, be liable where he derives some special benefit from having the employee drive home in the employer's vehicle as when the employer benefits from having the employee at work earlier and, presumably, spending more time at his actual duties. Where the employee's duties require him to circulate in a general area with no fixed place or hours of work, or to go to and from his home to various outside places of work, and his employer furnishes him with a vehicle to use in his work, the courts have frequently applied what has been called the "special errand" or "roving commission" rule, under which it can be found that the employee continues in the service of his employer until he actually reaches home. However, even if the employee be deemed to be acting within the scope of his employment in going to or from work in his employer's vehicle, the employer is not liable for his negligence where at the time of the accident,

FILAMER V IAC 212 SCRA 637 GUTIERREZ SR; August 17, 1992
NATURE Motion for Reconsideration FACTS - Funtecha is a scholar of FCI. He is also employed as a janitor. The president of FCI is Agustin Masa. Agustin has a son, Allan, who is the school bus (bus na jeepney) driver. Allan lives with his dad. Funtecha also lives in the presidents house free of charge while a student at FCI. - It is the practice of the driver (Allan) after classes to bring the kids home, then go back to the school, then go home in the school jeep. He is allowed to bring home the jeep because in the morning hes supposed to fetch the kids and bring them to school. - One night, Funtecha wanted to drive home. He has a student license. After a dangerous curb, and seeing that the road was clear, Allan let Funtecha drive. Then there was a fast moving truck (opposite direction) with glaring lights. Funtecha swerved right and hit the pedestrian Kapunan. Kapunan was walking in his lane in the direction against vehicular traffic (I think ito yung tamang lane and direction ng pedestrians). The jeep had only one functioning headlight that night.

torts & damages


- TC and CA ruled in favor of Kapunan. SC reversed, saying that FCI is not liable for the injuries caused by Funtecha on the grounds that the latter was not an authorized driver for whose acts the petitioner shall be directly and primarily answerable. ISSUE WON the employer of the janitor driving the school jeep can be held liable HELD YES - Driving the vehicle to and from the house of the school president where both Allan and Funtecha reside is an act in furtherance of the interest of the petitioner-school. Allan's job demands that he drive home the school jeep so he can use it to fetch students in the morning of the next school day. - It is indubitable under the circumstances that the school president had knowledge that the jeep was routinely driven home for the said purpose. Moreover, it is not improbable that the school president also had knowledge of Funtecha's possession of a student driver's license and his desire to undergo driving lessons during the time that he was not in his classrooms. - In learning how to drive while taking the vehicle home in the direction of Allan's house, Funtecha definitely was not, having a joy ride Funtecha was not driving for the purpose of his enjoyment or for a "frolic of his own" but ultimately, for the service for which the jeep was intended by the petitioner school. The act of Funtecha in taking over the steering wheel was one done for and in behalf of his employer for which act the petitionerschool cannot deny any responsibility by arguing that it was done beyond the scope of his janitorial duties. The clause "within the scope of their assigned tasks" for purposes of raising the presumption of liability of an employer, includes any act done by an employee, in furtherance of the interests of the employer or for the account of the employer at the time of the infliction of the injury or damage. Even if somehow, the employee driving the vehicle derived some benefit from the act, the existence of a presumptive liability of the employer is determined by answering the question of whether or not the servant was at the time of the accident performing any act in furtherance of his master's business. - Funtecha is an employee of petitioner FCI. He need not have an official appointment for a driver's position in order that the petitioner may be held responsible for his grossly negligent act, it being sufficient that the act of driving at the time of the incident was for the benefit of the petitioner. Hence, the fact that Funtecha was not the school driver or was not acting with the scope of his janitorial duties does not relieve the petitioner of the burden of rebutting the presumption juris tantum that there was negligence on its part either in the selection of a servant or employee, or in the supervision over him. The petitioner has failed to show proof of its having exercised the required diligence of a good father of a family over its employees Funtecha and Allan. There were no rules and regulations prohibiting the use of the school jeep by persons other than the driver. There was thus no supervision on the part of FCI over its employees with regard to the use of the jeep. - The petitioner, thus, has an obligation to pay damages for injury arising from the unskilled manner by which Funtecha drove the vehicle. In the absence of evidence that the petitioner had exercised the diligence of a good father of a family in the supervision of its employees, the law imposes upon it the vicarious liability for acts or omissions of its employees. The liability of the employer is, under Article 2180, primary and solidary. However, the employer shall have recourse against the negligent employee for whatever damages are paid to the heirs of the plaintiff.

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NPC v CA (PHESCO INC.) 294 CRA 209 ROMERO; August 14, 1998
NATURE Petition for review on certiorari

- 75 397 SCRA 75

prof. casis
NATURE: APPEAL from CAs DECISION - 14 Oct 1993, about 730pm, Nicanor Navidad, then drunk, entered the EDSA LRT station after purchasing a "token" (representing payment of the fare). - While Navidad was standing on the platform near the LRT tracks, Junelito Escartin, the security guard assigned to the area approached Navidad. - A misunderstanding or an altercation between the two apparently ensued that led to a fist fight. - No evidence, however, was adduced to indicate how the fight started or who, between the two, delivered the first blow or how Navidad later fell on the LRT tracks. - At the exact moment that Navidad fell, an LRT train, operated by petitioner Rodolfo Roman, was coming in. Navidad was struck by the moving train, and he was killed instantaneously. - Marjorie Navidad (Nicanors widow), along with their children, filed a complaint for damages against Junelito Escartin, Rodolfo Roman, the LRTA, the Metro Transit Organization, Inc. (Metro Transit), and Prudent for the death of her husband. - LRTA and Roman filed a counterclaim against Navidad and a cross-claim against Escartin and Prudent. Prudent, in its answer, denied liability and averred that it had exercised due diligence in the selection and supervision of its security guards. - The LRTA and Roman presented their evidence while Prudent and Escartin, instead of presenting evidence, filed a demurrer contending that Navidad had failed to prove that Escartin was negligent in his assigned task. - TC: Rendered in favor of the Navidads and against the Prudent Security and Junelito Escartin ordered the latter to pay jointly and severally the plaintiffs the following: "a) 1) Actual damages of P44,830.00; 2) Compensatory damages of P443,520.00; 3) Indemnity for the death of Nicanor Navidad in the sum of P50,000.00; b) Moral damages of P50,000.00; c) Attorneys fees of P20,000; d) Costs of suit. - TC: dismissed complaint against defendants LRTA and Rodolfo Roman for lack of merit. -Prudent appealed to the Court of Appeals. - CA: exonerated Prudent from any liability for the death of Nicanor Navidad and, instead, holding the LRTA and Roman jointly and severally liable for the following amounts: a) P44,830.00 as actual damages; b) P50,000.00 as nominal damages; c) P50,000.00 as moral damages; d) P50,000.00 as indemnity for the death of the deceased; and e) P20,000.00 as and for attorneys fees. -CA ratiocinated that while the deceased might not have then as yet boarded the train, a contract of carriage theretofore had already existed when the victim entered the place where passengers were supposed to be after paying the fare and getting the corresponding token therefor. In exempting Prudent from liability, the court stressed that there was nothing to link the security agency to the death of Navidad. It said that Navidad failed to show that Escartin inflicted fist blows upon the victim and the evidence merely established the fact of death of Navidad by reason of his having been hit by the train owned and managed by the LRTA and operated at the time by Roman. The appellate court faulted petitioners for their failure to present expert evidence to establish the fact that the application of emergency brakes could not have stopped the train. - CA denied petitioners motion for reconsideration in its resolution of 10 October 2000.

FACTS - On July 22, 1979, a convoy of four dump trucks owned by the National Power Corporation (NPC) left Marawi City bound for Iligan City. Unfortunately, enroute to its destination, one of the trucks driven by Gavino Ilumba figured in a head-on-collision with a Toyota Tamaraw. The incident resulted in the death of three persons riding in the Toyota Tamaraw, as well as physical injuries to seventeen other passengers. - The heirs of the victims filed a complaint for damages against NPC and PHESCO Incorporated (PHESCO is a contractor of NPC with the main duty of supplying workers and technicians for the latter's projects, but in this case it was alleged that they own the dump trucks). - The trial court rendered a decision absolving NPC of any liability. PHESCO appealed to the Court of Appeals, which reversed the trial court's judgment absolving PHESCO and sentencing NPC to pay damages. ISSUE WON NPC is the employer of Ilumba, driver of the dump truck, which should be solidarily liable for the damages to the victims HELD YES - In the provisions of the "Memorandum of Understanding" entered into by PHESCO and NPC, we are convinced that PHESCO was engaged in "labor only" contracting. In a "labor only" contract, the person acting as contractor is considered merely as an agent or intermediary of the principal who is responsible to the workers in the same manner and to the same extent as if they had been directly employed by him. Finding that a contractor was a "labor-only" contractor is equivalent to a finding that an employer-employee relationship existed between the owner (principal contractor) and the "laboronly" contractor, including the latter's workers. - Article 2180 of the Civil Code explicitly provides: "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 industry." - In this regard, NPC's liability is direct, primary and solidary with PHESCO and the driver. Of course, NPC, if the judgment for damages is satisfied by it, shall have recourse against PHESCO and the driver who committed the negligence which gave rise to the action. DISPOSITION Assailed decision affirmed.

LIGHT RAIL TRANSIT AUTHORITY & RODOLFO ROMAN vs MARJORIE NAVIDAD, Heirs of the Late NICANOR NAVIDAD & PRUDENT SECURITY AGENCY VITUG, J/February 6, 2003

torts & damages


ISSUES: WON CA ERRED IN FINDING THAT LRTA IS LIABLE FOR THE DEATH OF NICANOR NAVIDAD, JR. WON ERRED CA ERRED IN FINDING THAT RODOLFO ROMAN IS AN EMPLOYEE OF LRTA AND ALSO LIABLE FOR THE DEATH OF NAVIDAD LRTAs CLAIMS: -Escartins assault upon Navidad, which caused the latter to fall on the tracks, was an act of a stranger that could not have been foreseen or prevented. - NO employer-employee relationship between Roman and LRTA because Roman himself had testified being an employee of Metro Transit and not of the LRTA. Navidads Contention: - A contract of carriage was deemed created from the moment Navidad paid the fare at the LRT station and entered the premises of the latter, entitling Navidad to all the rights and protection under a contractual relation, and that the appellate court had correctly held LRTA and Roman liable for the death of Navidad in failing to exercise extraordinary diligence imposed upon a common carrier. HELD: 1. NO. The foundation of LRTAs liability is the contract of carriage and its obligation to indemnify the victim arises from the breach of that contract by reason of its failure to exercise the high diligence required of the common carrier. In the discharge of its commitment to ensure the safety of passengers, a carrier may choose to hire its own employees or avail itself of the services of an outsider or an independent firm to undertake the task. In either case, the common carrier is not relieved of its responsibilities under the contract of carriage. - PRUDENT could also be held liable but only for tort under the provisions of Article 217612 and related provisions, in conjunction with Article 2180,13 of the Civil Code. (But there wasnt any evidence shown that linking Prudent to the death of Navidad in this case- SC) The premise, however, for the employers liability is negligence or fault on the part of the employee. - Once such fault is established, the employer can then be made liable on the basis of the presumption juris tantum that the employer failed to exercise diligentissimi patris families in the selection and supervision of its employees. The liability is primary and can only be negated by showing due diligence in the selection and supervision of the employee, a factual matter that has not been shown. - A contractual obligation can be breached by tort and when the same act or omission causes the injury, one resulting in culpa contractual and the other in culpa aquiliana, Article 219414 of the Civil Code can well apply. - In fine, a liability for tort may arise even under a contract, where tort is that which breaches the contract. Stated differently, when an act which constitutes a breach of contract would have itself constituted the source of a quasidelictual liability had no contract existed between the parties, the contract can be said to have been breached by tort, thereby allowing the rules on tort to apply. 2. YES. There is no showing that Rodolfo Roman himself is guilty of any culpable act or omission, he must also be absolved from liability as Prudent is. Needless to say, the contractual tie between the LRT and Navidad is not itself a juridical relation between the latter and Roman; thus, Roman can be made liable only for his own fault or negligence.

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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. 13 Art. 2180. The obligation imposed by Article 2176 is demandable not only for ones 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 for the damages caused by the minor children who live in their company. Guardians are liable for damages caused by the minors or incapacitated persons who are under their authority and live in their company. The owners and managers of an establishment or enterprise are likewise responsible for damages caused by their employees in the service of the branches in which the latter are employed or on the occasion of their functions. 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 industry. The State is responsible in like manner when it acts through a special agent, but not when the damage has been caused by the official to whom the task done properly pertains, in which case what is provided in article 2176 shall be applicable. Lastly, teachers or heads of establishments of arts and trades shall be liable for damages caused by their pupils and students or apprentices, so long as they remain in their custody. The responsibility treated of in this article shall cease when the persons herein mentioned prove that they observed all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage. 14 Art. 2194. The responsibility of two or more persons who are liable for a quasi-delict is solidary.

REASONING: - Law and jurisprudence dictate that a common carrier, both from the nature of its business and for reasons of public policy, is burdened with the duty of exercising utmost diligence in ensuring the safety of passengers. - The Civil Code, governing the liability of a common carrier for death of or injury to its passengers, provides: "Article 1755. 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 a due regard for all the circumstances. "Article 1756. 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 in articles 1733 and 1755." "Article 1759. Common carriers are liable for the death of or injuries to passengers through the negligence or willful acts of the formers employees, although such employees may have acted beyond the scope of their authority or in violation of the orders of the common carriers. "This liability of the common carriers does not cease upon proof that they exercised all the diligence of a good father of a family in the selection and supervision of their employees." "Article 1763. A common carrier is responsible for injuries suffered by a passenger on account of the willful acts or negligence of other passengers or of strangers, if the common carriers employees through the exercise of the diligence of a good father of a family could have prevented or stopped the act or omission." -The law requires common carriers to carry passengers safely using the utmost diligence of very cautious persons with due regard for all circumstances. - Such duty of a common carrier to provide safety to its passengers so obligates it not only during the course of the trip but for so long as the passengers are within its premises and where they ought to be in pursuance to the contract of carriage - The statutory provisions render a common carrier liable for death of or injury to passengers (a) through the negligence or wilful acts of its employees or b) on account of wilful acts or negligence of other passengers or of strangers if the common carriers employees through the exercise of due diligence could have prevented or stopped the act or omission. - In case of such death or injury, a carrier is presumed to have been at fault or been negligent, and by simple proof of injury, the passenger is relieved of the duty to still establish the fault or negligence of the carrier or of its employees and the burden shifts upon the carrier to prove that the injury is due to an unforeseen event or to force majeure. In the absence of satisfactory explanation by the carrier on how the accident occurred, which LRTA and Roman, according to the CA, have failed to show, the presumption would be that it has been at fault, an exception from the general rule that negligence must be proved. DISPOSITION: CAS DECISION AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION but only in that (a) the award of nominal damages is DELETED and (b) petitioner Rodolfo Roman is absolved from liability. No costs. ______________ 12 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

MCKEE V IAC (TAYAG & MANALO) 221 SCRA 517 Davide, Jr.; July 16, 1992
NATURE - Petition to review the resolution of the CA FACTS - On January 8, 1977, in Pulong Pulo Bridge along MacArthur Highway, Pampanga, a head-on-collision took place between an International cargo truck, Loadstar, owned by private respondents, Jaime Tayag and Rosalina Manalo, and driven by Ruben Galang, and a Ford Escort car driven by Jose Koh. The collision resulted in the deaths of Jose Koh, Kim McKee and Loida Bondoc, and physical injuries to George McKee, Christopher McKee and Araceli McKee, all passengers of the Ford Escort. - Immediately before the collision, the cargo truck, which was loaded with 200 cavans of rice weighing about 10,000 kilos, was traveling southward from Angeles City to San Fernando Pampanga, and was bound for Manila. The Ford Escort, on the other hand, was on its way to Angeles City from San Fernando. When the northbound car was about 10 meters away from the southern approach of the bridge, 2 boys suddenly darted from the right side of the road and into the lane of the car. The boys were moving back and forth, unsure of whether to cross all the way to the other side or turn back. Jose Koh blew the horn of the car, swerved to the left and entered the lane of the truck; he then switched on the headlights of the car, applied the brakes and thereafter attempted to return to his lane. Before he could do so, his car

torts & damages


collided with the truck. The collision occurred in the lane of the truck, which was the opposite lane, on the said bridge. - Please see first Mckee digest for details on the collision. - Civil cases for damages based on quasi-delict were filed as a result of a vehicular accident. ISSUE WON the owners of the cargo truck (Tayag and Manalo) are liable for the resulting damages HELD YES - The Court rules that it was the truck driver's negligence in failing to exert ordinary care to avoid the collision which was, in law, the proximate cause of the collision. As employers of the truck driver, Manalo and Tayag are, under Article 2180 of the Civil Code, directly and primarily liable for the resulting damages. The presumption that they are negligent flows from the negligence of their employee. That presumption, however, is only juris tantum, not juris et de jure. Their only possible defense is that they exercised all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent the damage. Article 2180 reads as follows: 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. xxx xxx xxx 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 industry. xxx xxx xxx The responsibility treated of in this article shall cease when the persons herein mentioned prove that they observed all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent damage. The diligence of a good father referred to means the diligence in the selection and supervision of employees. - The answers of the private respondents in Civil Cases Nos. 4477 and 4478 did not interpose this defense. Neither did they attempt to prove it.

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- Negligence, as it is commonly understood is conduct which creates an undue risk of harm to others. It is the failure to observe that degree of care, precaution, and vigilance which the circumstances justly demand, whereby such other person suffers injury. 3. YES - Since important business transactions and decisions may occur at all hours in all sorts of situations and under all kinds of guises, the provision for the unlimited use of a company car therefore principally serves the business and goodwill of a company and only incidentally the private purposes of the individual who actually uses the car, the managerial employee or company sales agent. As such, in providing for a company car for business use and/or for the purpose of furthering the company's image, a company owes a responsibility to the public to see to it that the managerial or other employees to whom it entrusts virtually unlimited use of a company issued car are able to use the company issue capably and responsibly. - In fine, Alexander Commercial, inc. has not demonstrated, to our satisfaction, that it exercised the care and diligence of a good father of the family in entrusting its company car to Li. No allegations were made as to whether or not the company took the steps necessary to determine or ascertain the driving proficiency and history of Li, to whom it gave full and unlimited use of a company car. Not having been able to overcome the burden of demonstrating that it should be absolved of liability for entrusting its company car to Li, said company, based on the principle of bonus pater familias, ought to be jointly and severally liable with the former for the injuries sustained by Ma. Lourdes Valenzuela during the accident. DISPOSITION Judgment of RTC reinstated.

the body. She was confined in the hospital for twenty (20) days and was eventually fitted with an artificial leg. She filed a claim for damages against defendant. - Lis alibi was that he was driving at 55kph when he was suddenly confronted with a speeding car coming from the opposite direction. He instinctively swerved to the right to avoid colliding with the oncoming vehicle, and bumped plaintiff's car, which he did not see because it was midnight blue in color, with no parking lights or early warning device, and the area was poorly lighted. Defendants counterclaimed for damages, alleging that plaintiff was the one who was reckless or negligent. -RTC found Li and Alexander solidarily liable. CA absolved Alexander. ISSUE 1. WON Li was grossly negligent in driving the company issued car 2. WON Valenzuela was guilty of contributory negligence 3. WON Alexander Commercial is liable as Lis employer HELD 1. YES - The average motorist alert to road conditions will have no difficulty applying the brakes to a car traveling at the speed claimed by Li. Given a light rainfall, the visibility of the street, and the road conditions on a principal metropolitan thoroughfare like Aurora Boulevard, Li would have had ample time to react to the changing conditions of the road if he were alert as every driver should be to those conditions. Driving exacts a more than usual toll on the senses. Physiological "fight or flight" mechanisms are at work, provided such mechanisms were not dulled by drugs, alcohol, exhaustion, drowsiness, etc. Li's failure to react in a manner which would have avoided the accident could therefore have been only due to either or both of the two factors: 1) that he was driving at a "very fast" speed as testified by one of the witneses; and 2) that he was under the influence of alcohol. Either factor working independently would have diminished his responsiveness to road conditions, since normally he would have slowed down prior to reaching Valenzuela's car, rather than be in a situation forcing him to suddenly apply his brakes. - Li was, therefore, negligent in driving his company-issued Mitsubishi Lancer 2. NO - Contributory negligence is conduct on the part of the injured party, contributing as a legal cause to the harm he has suffered, which falls below the standard to which he is required to conform for his own protection. Under the "emergency rule" adopted by this Court in Gan vs. Court of Appeals, an individual who suddenly finds himself in a situation of danger and is required to act without much time to consider the best means that may be adopted to avoid the impending danger, is not guilty of negligence if he fails to undertake what subsequently and upon reflection may appear to be a better solution, unless the emergency was brought by his own negligence. - While the emergency rule applies to those cases in which reflective thought or the opportunity to adequately weigh a threatening situation is absent, the conduct which is required of an individual in such cases is dictated not exclusively by the suddenness of the event which absolutely negates thoroughful care, but by the over-all nature of the circumstances. A woman driving a vehicle suddenly crippled by a flat tire on a rainy night will not be faulted for stopping at a point which is both convenient for her to do so and which is not a hazard to other motorists. She is not expected to run the entire boulevard in search for a parking zone or turn on a dark street or alley where she would likely find no one to help her.

MERRITT v GOVERNMENT 34 Phil 311 TRENT; March 31, 1916


NATURE Appeal from decision of the CFI FACTS - E. Merritt, riding on a motorcycle, was hit by the General Hospital ambulance, which turned suddenly and unexpectedly to Taft Avenue without sounding any whistle or horn, in contravention of an ordinance and the Motor Vehicle Act. - Plaintiff was so severely injured. His leg showed a contraction of an inch and a half and a curvature that made his leg very weak and painful at the point of the fracture. Examination of his head revealed a notable readjustment of the functions of the brain and nerves. The patient apparently was slightly deaf, had a light weakness in his eyes and in his mental condition. This latter weakness was always noticed when the plaintiff had to do any difficult mental labor, especially when he attempted to use his money for mathematical calculations. - Witnesses testified that plaintiffs physical and mental condition before the accident was excellent. He was one of the best contractors of wooden buildings. He could not now earn even a half of the income that he had secured for his work because he had lost 50 per cent of his efficiency. He had to dissolve a partnership that he had with an engineer and give up a contract for the construction of a building.

VALENZUELA v CA (LI and ALEXANDER COMMERCIAL, INC.) 253 SCRA 303 KAPUNAN; February 7, 1996
NATURE Petition for review on certiorari FACTS - Ma. Lourdes Valenzuela was driving when she realized she had a flat tire. She parked along the sidewalk of Aurora Blvd., put on her emergency lights, alighted from the car, and went to the rear to open the trunk. She was standing at the left side of the rear of her car pointing to the tools to a man who will help her fix the tire when she was suddenly bumped by a car driven by defendant Richard Li and registered in the name of defendant Alexander Commercial, Inc. - Because of the impact plaintiff was thrown against the windshield of the car of the defendant, which was destroyed, and then fell to the ground. She was pulled out from under defendant's car. Plaintiff's left leg was severed up to the middle of her thigh, with only some skin and sucle connected to the rest of

torts & damages


- Trial court held that the collision was due solely on the negligence of the chauffeur and awarded the plaintiff the sum of P14, 741. - Act No. 2457 was enacted. It states that E. Merritt is hereby authorized to bring suit in the Court of First Instance of the city of Manila against the Government of the Philippine Islands in order to fix the responsibility for the collision between his motorcycle and the ambulance of the General Hospital, and to determine the amount of the damages, if any, to which Mr. E. Merritt is entitled on account of said collision, and the Attorney-General of the Philippine Islands is hereby authorized and directed to appear at the trial on the behalf of the Government of said Islands, to defendant said Government at the same. ISSUES WON the government is liable for the damages resulting from a tort committed by an agent or employee of the government HELD NO Ratio The State is only liable for the acts of its agents, officers and employees when they act as special agents within the meaning of paragraph 5 of article 1903. Reasoning - In the United States the rule is that the state is not liable for the torts committed by its officers or agents whom it employs, except when expressly made so by legislative enactment. The Government does not undertake to guarantee to any person the fidelity of the officers or agents whom it employs, since that would involve it in all its operations in endless embarrassments, difficulties and losses, which would be subversive of the public interest. - As to the scope of legislative enactments permitting individuals to sue the state where the cause of action arises out of either fort or contract, the rule is stated in 36 Cyc., 915, thus: By consenting to be sued a state simply waives its immunity from suit. It does not thereby concede its liability to plaintiff, or create any cause of action in his favor, or extend its liability to any cause not previously recognized. It merely gives a remedy to enforce a preexisting liability and submits itself to the jurisdiction of the court, subject to its right to interpose any lawful defense. - Paragraph 5 of article 1903 of the Civil Code reads: The state is liable in this sense when it acts through a special agent, but not when the damage should have been caused by the official to whom properly it pertained to do the act performed, in which case the provisions of the preceding article shall be applicable. - The obligation to indemnify for damages which a third person causes to another by his fault or negligence is based, as is evidenced by the same Law 3, Title 15, Partida 7, on that the person obligated, by his own fault or negligence, takes part in the act or omission of the third party who caused the damage. It follows therefrom that the state, by virtue of such provisions of law, is not responsible for the damages suffered by private individuals in consequence of acts performed by its employees in the discharge of the functions pertaining to their office, because neither fault nor even negligence can be presumed on the part of the state in the organization of branches of public service and in the appointment of its agents; on the contrary, we must presuppose all foresight humanly possible on its part in order that each branch of service serves the general weal an that of private persons interested in its operation. Between these latter and the state, therefore, no relations of a private nature governed by the civil law can arise except in a

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first. As to the second, the record shows, and the trial court so found, that the plaintiff's services as a contractor were worth P1,000 per month. The court, however, limited the time to 2months and 21 days, which the plaintiff was actually confined in the hospital. In this we think there was error, because it was clearly established that the plaintiff was wholly incapacitated for a period of 6 months. The mere fact that he remained in the hospital only 2 months and 21 days while the remainder of the 6 months was spent in his home, would not prevent recovery for the whole time. We, therefore, find that the amount of damages sustained by the plaintiff, without any fault on his part, is P18,075. Dispositive Judgment appealed from reversed. Whether the Government intends to make itself legally liable for the amount of damages above set forth, which the plaintiff has sustained by reason of the negligent acts of one of its employees, by legislative enactment and by appropriating sufficient funds therefor, we are not called upon to determine. This matter rests solely with the Legislature and not with the courts.

case where the state acts as a judicial person capable of acquiring rights and contracting obligations. - The Civil Code in chap 2, title 16, book 4, regulates the obligations which arise out of fault or negligence; and whereas in the first article thereof. No. 1902, where the general principle is laid down that where a person who by an act or omission causes damage to another through fault or negligence, shall be obliged to repair the damage so done, reference is made to acts or omissions of the persons who directly or indirectly cause the damage, the following articles refers to this persons and imposes an identical obligation upon those who maintain fixed relations of authority and superiority over the authors of the damage, because the law presumes that in consequence of such relations the evil caused by their own fault or negligence is imputable to them. This legal presumption gives way to proof, however, because, as held in the last paragraph of article 1903, responsibility for acts of third persons ceases when the persons mentioned in said article prove that they employed all the diligence of a good father of a family to avoid the damage, and among these persons, called upon to answer in a direct and not a subsidiary manner, are found, in addition to the mother or the father in a proper case, guardians and owners or directors of an establishment or enterprise, the state, but not always, except when it acts through the agency of a special agent, doubtless because and only in this case, the fault or negligence, which is the original basis of this kind of objections, must be presumed to lie with the state. - Although in some cases the state might by virtue of the general principle set forth in article 1902 respond for all the damage that is occasioned to private parties by orders or resolutions which by fault or negligence are made by branches of the central administration acting in the name and representation of the state itself and as an external expression of its sovereignty in the exercise of its executive powers, yet said article is not applicable in the case of damages said to have been occasioned to the petitioners by an executive official, acting in the exercise of his powers, in proceedings to enforce the collections of certain property taxes owing by the owner of the property which they hold in sublease. - The responsibility of the state is limited by article 1903 to the case wherein it acts through a special agent (one who receives a definite and fixed order or commission, foreign to the exercise of the duties of his office if he is a special official) so that in representation of the state and being bound to act as an agent thereof, he executes the trust confided to him. This concept does not apply to any executive agent who is an employee of the acting administration and who on his own responsibility performs the functions which are inherent in and naturally pertain to his office and which are regulated by law and the regulations. - The responsibility of the state is limited to that which it contracts through a special agent, duly empowered by a definite order or commission to perform some act or charged with some definite purpose which gives rise to the claim, and not where the claim is based on acts or omissions imputable to a public official charged with some administrative or technical office who can be held to the proper responsibility in the manner laid down by the law of civil responsibility. - The chauffeur of the ambulance of the General Hospital was not such an agent within the meaning of paragraph 5 of article 1903 On the computation of damages The two items which constitute a part of the P14,741 and which are drawn in question by the plaintiff are (a) P5,000, the award awarded for permanent injuries, and (b) the P2,666, the amount allowed for the loss of wages during the time the plaintiff was incapacitated from pursuing his occupation. We find nothing in the record which would justify us in increasing the amount of the

ROSETE v AUDITOR GENERAL 81 Phil 453 FERIA; August 31, 1948


NATURE Appeal from the decision of the Insular Auditor FACTS - Jose Panlilio ignited his lighter near a drum into which gasoline was being drained causing fire in the warehouse of Emergency Control Administration (ECA, a government agency). - The fire destroyed the building owned by the petitioner, thereby giving rise to this claim for damages against Panlilio for his negligence and the officers of ECA for storing gasoline in said warehouse contrary to the provisions of ordinances of the City of Manila (ordinance requires a license for storing flammable substances, which ECA didnt have). - Insular Auditor dismissed the claim hence this appeal. ISSUE WON the government is liable for the damages HELD NO - Art. 1903 of the Civil Code reads: Art. 1903. The obligation imposed in the preceding article is enforceable not only for personal acts and omission but also for those persons for whom another is responsible. xx The state is liable in this sense when it acts through a special agent, but not when the damage should have been caused by the official to whom it properly pertained to do the act performed, in which case the provisions of the preceding article shall be applicable. - In the case of Merritt v. Government, the court held the following:

torts & damages


The state is not responsible for the damage suffered by private individuals in consequence of acts performed by its employees in the discharge of the functions pertaining to their office n relations of a private nature governed by the civil law can arise except in a case where the state acts as a juridical person capable of acquiring rights and contracting obligations. xx That the responsibility of the state is limited by article 1903 to the case wherein it acts through a special agent (and a special agent, in the sense in which these words are employed, is one who receives a definite and fixed order by the commission, foreign to the exercise of duties of his office if he is a special official) so that in representation of the state and being bound to act as an agent thereof, he executes the trust confided to him. - There being no showing that whatever negligence may be imputed to the ECA or its officers, was done by a special agent, because the officers of the ECA did not act as special agents of the government within the above defined meaning of that wod in Article 1903 of the Civil Code in storing gasoline in the warehouse of ECA, the government is not responsible for damages caused through such negligence. - Although there is an act (Act No. 327) authorizing the filing of claims against the government with the Insular Auditor, and appeal by private persons or entities from the latters decision to the Supreme Court, it does not make any and all claims against the government allowable, and the latter responsible for all claims. DISPOSITION Decision appealed from is affirmed.

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Unpaid irrigation fees or administration charges shall be preferred liens first, upon the land benefited, and then on the crops raised thereon, which liens shall have preference over all other liens except for taxes on the land, and such preferred liens shall not be removed until all fees or administration charges are paid or the property is levied upon and sold by the National Irrigation Administration for the satisfaction thereof. . . . The same section also provides that NIA may sue and be sued in court. It has its own assets and liabilities. It also has corporate powers to be exercised by a Board of Directors. Section 2, subsection (f): (f) . . . and to transact such business, as are directly or indirectly necessary, incidental or conducive to the attainment of the above powers and objectives, including the power to establish and maintain subsidiaries, and in general, to exercise all the powers of a corporation under the Corporation Law, insofar as they are not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act. DISPOSITION We conclude that the National Irrigation Administration is a government agency with a juridical personality separate and distinct from the government. It is not a mere agency of the government but a corporate body performing proprietary functions. Therefore, it may be held liable for the damages caused by the negligent act of its driver who was not its special agent. ACCORDINGLY, the Motion for Reconsideration dated January 26, 1990 is DENIED WITH FINALITY. The decision of this Court in G.R. No. 55963 and G.R. No. 61045 dated December 1, 1989 is hereby AFFIRMED. DISSENTING: PADILLA: to say that NIA has opened itself to suit is one thing; to say that it is liable for damages arising from tort committed by its employees, is still another thing. The state or a government agency performing governmental functions may be held liable for tort committed by its employees only when it acts through a special agent.

nature of its powers and functions does not show that it was intended to bring to the Government any special corporate benefit or pecuniary profit, a strong dissenting opinion held that Angat River system is a government entity exercising proprietary functions. The Angat dissenting opinion: Alegre protested the announced termination of his employment. He argued that although his contract did stipulate that the same would terminate on July 17, 1976, since his services were necessary and desirable in the usual business of his employer, and his employment had lasted for five years, he had acquired the status of regular employee and could not be removed except for valid cause. The employment contract of 1971 was executed when the Labor Code of the Philippines had not yet been promulgated, which came into effect some 3 years after the perfection of the contract.

ISSUE WON the NIR is a government agency with a juridical personality separate and distinct from the government, thereby opening it up to the possibility that it may be held liable for the damages caused by its driver, who was not its special agent HELD YES Reasoning the functions of government have been classified into governmental or constituent and proprietary or ministrant. The former involves the exercise of sovereignty and considered as compulsory; the latter connotes merely the exercise of proprietary functions and thus considered as optional. The National Irrigation Administration was not created for purposes of local government. While it may be true that the NIA was essentially a service agency of the government aimed at promoting public interest and public welfare, such fact does not make the NIA essentially and purely a "government-function" corporation. NIA was created for the purpose of "constructing, improving, rehabilitating, and administering all national irrigation systems in the Philippines, including all communal and pump irrigation projects." Certainly, the state and the community as a whole are largely benefited by the services the agency renders, but these functions are only incidental to the principal aim of the agency, which is the irrigation of lands. NIA is a government agency invested with a corporate personality separate and distinct from the government, thus is governed by the Corporation Law. Section 1 of Republic Act No. 3601 provides: Sec. 1. Name and Domicile A body corporate is hereby created which shall be known as the National Irrigation Administration. . . . which shall be organized immediately after the approval of this Act. It shall have its principal seat of business in the City of Manila and shall have representatives in all provinces, for the proper conduct of its business. (Emphasis for emphasis). Besides, Section 2, subsection b of P.D. 552 provides that: (b) To charge and collect from the beneficiaries of the water from all irrigation systems constructed by or under its administration, such fees or administration charges as may be necessary to cover the cost of operation, maintenance and insurance, and to recover the cost of construction within a reasonable period of time to the extent consistent with government policy; to recover funds or portions thereof expended for the construction and/or rehabilitation of communal irrigation systems which funds shall accrue to a special fund for irrigation development under section 2 hereof;

MENDOZA V. DE LEON FONTANILLA V MALIAMAN and NATIONAL IRRIGATION ADMINSITRATION 194 SCRA 486 PARAS; February 27, 1991
NATURE Resolution FACTS The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) maintains that it does not perform solely and primarily proprietary functions, but is an agency of the government tasked with governmental functions, and is therefore not liable for the tortuous act of its driver Garcia, who was not its special agent. o NIA believes this bases this on: PD 552 amended some provisions of RA 3601 (the law which created the NIA) The case of Angat River Irrigation System v. Angat River Workers Union Angat Case: Although the majority opinion declares that the Angat System, like the NIA, exercised a governmental function because the

CITY OF MANILA V TEOTICA 22 SCRA 267 CONCEPCION; January 29, 1968


NATURE Appeal by certiorari from a decision of the Court of Appeals. FACTS - Genaro N. Teotico, an accountant, was at the corner of the Old Luneta and P. Burgos Avenue, Manila, waiting for a jeep. After waiting 5 mins, he hailed a jeep that came to a stop. As he stepped down from the curb to board the jeep, and took a few steps, he fell inside a manhole on P. Burgos Avenue. Due to the fall, his head hit the rim of the manhole breaking his eyeglasses and causing broken pieces thereof to pierce his left eyelid. As blood flowed therefrom, impairing his vision, several persons came to his assistance and pulled him out of the manhole. One of them brought Teotico to the Philippine General Hospital, where his injuries were treated, after which he was taken home. In addition to the lacerated wound in his left upper eyelid, Teotico suffered contusions on the left thigh, the left upper arm, the right leg and the upper lip apart from an abrasion on the right infra-patella region. These injuries and the allergic eruption caused by anti-tetanus injections administered to him in the hospital, required further medical treatment by a private practitioner. - Teotico filed with CFI Manila, a complaint which was, subsequently, amended for damages against the City of Manila, its mayor, city engineer,

torts & damages


city health officer, city treasurer and chief of police. - Defense pointed out that because of the lucrative scrap iron business then prevailing, stealing of iron catchbasin covers was rampant; that the Office of the City Engineer has filed complaints in court resulting from theft of said iron covers; that in order to prevent such thefts, the city government has changed the position and layout of catchbasins in the City by constructing them under the sidewalks with concrete cement covers and openings on the side of the gutter; and that these changes had been undertaken by the city from time to time whenever funds were available. - CFI Manila sustained the theory of the defendants and dismissed the amended complaint, without costs. - This decision was affirmed by the Court of Appeals, except insofar as the City of Manila is concerned, which was sentenced to pay damages in the aggregate sum of P6,750.00. Hence, this appeal by the City of Manila. - The first issue raised by the Manila is whether the present case is governed by Section 4 of RA 409 (Charter of the City of Manila) reading: The city shall not be liable or held for damages or injuries to persons or property arising from the failure of the Mayor, the Municipal Board, or any other city officer, to enforce the provisions of this chapter, or any other law or ordinance, or from negligence of said Mayor, Municipal Board, or other officers while enforcing or attempting to enforce said provisions. or by Article 2189 of the Civil Code of the Philippines which provides: Provinces, cities and municipalities shall be liable for damages for the death of, or injuries suffered by, any person by reason of defective conditions of road, streets, bridges, public buildings, and other public works under their control or supervision. - Manila maintains that the former provision should prevail over the latter, because RA 409, is a special law, intended exclusively for the City of Manila, whereas the Civil Code is a general law, applicable to the entire Philippines. ISSUES WON City of Manila should be held liable for the damages suffered by Teotica. HELD YES. Ratio RA 409,sec.4 refers to liability arising from negligence, in general, regardless of the object thereof, whereas Article 2189, CC governs liability due to "defective streets," in particular. Since the present action is based upon the alleged defective condition of a road, said Article 2189 is decisive thereon. Reasoning The assertion to the effect that said Avenue is a national highway was made, for the first time, in its motion for reconsideration of the decision of the Court of Appeals. At any rate, under Article 2189 of the Civil Code, it is not necessary for the liability therein established to attach that the defective roads or streets belong to the province, city or municipality from which responsibility is exacted. What said article requires is that the province, city or municipality have either "control or supervision" over said street or road. Even if P. Burgos Avenue were, therefore, a national highway, this circumstance would not necessarily detract from its "control or supervision" by the City of Manila, under Republic Act 409. Then, again, the determination of whether or not P. Burgos Avenue is under the control or supervision of the City of Manila and whether the latter is guilty of negligence, in connection with the maintenance of said road, which were

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passive, throughout the period of Taylor's stay abroad, concerning the unauthorized disbursements of corporate funds for the latter. This plus the fact that he even approved thrice payroll checks for the payment of Taylor's salary, demonstrate quite distinctly that the petitioner neglected to perform his duties properly, to the damage of the firm of which he was an officer. -The fact that he was occupying a contractual position at the Ace Advertising is of no moment. The existence of a contract between the parties, as has been repeatedly held by this Court, constitutes no bar to the commission of a tort by one against the other and the consequent recovery of damages

decided by the Court of Appeals in the affirmative, is one of fact, and the findings of said Court thereon are not subject to our review. Dispositive WHEREFORE, the decision appealed from should be as it is hereby affirmed, with costs against the City of Manila. Voting Reyes, J.B.L., Dizon, Makalintal, Bengzon, J.P., Zaldivar, Sanchez, Castro, Angeles and Fernando, JJ., concur.

ARANETA v JOYA 57 SCRA 59 CASTRO J.: May 24, 1974


FACTS: -An employee of the Ace ADVERTISING Company was sent to the States to pursue studies in television. When asked about the expenses of the trip, respondent answered that these were not shouldered by the company and instead by other parties -while abroad, he continued to receive his salaries in the form of vouchers ordered and signed by respondent Joya. The petitioner signed three of these checks. The others were signed by either the respondent, or Vicente Araneta (company treasurer) who put up part of the bill connected with Taylor's trip and also handed him letters for delivery in the United States. The Ace Advertising disbursed P5,043.20, all told, on account of Taylor's travel and studies -the Ace Advertising filed a complaint with the court of first instance of Manila against the respondent for recovery of the total sum disbursed to Taylor, alleging that the trip was made without its knowledge, authority or ratification. The respondent, in his answer, denied the charge and claimed that the trip was nonetheless ratified by the company's board of directors, and that in any event under the by-laws he had the discretion, as general manager, to authorize the trip which was for the company's benefit -Joya also filed a 3rd party complaint against the two Aranetas proving that they were involved in sending Taylor abroad -trial court rendered judgment ordering the respondent to pay the Ace Advertising "the sum of P5,043.20 with interest at the legal rate from August 23, 1954 until full payment. 3rd party complaint dismissed -CA affirmed however dismissal of 3rd party complaint was reversed stating that Taylor's trip had been neither authorized nor ratified by the company -CA noted that based on the facts, both petitioners knew and through their acts showed that they approved of the trip. were also privy to the unauthorized disbursement of the corporate moneys jointly with the appellant; what had happened was in truth and in fact a venture by them given their stamp of approval; and as it was an unauthorized act of expenditure of corporate funds, and it was these three without whose acts the same could not have happened, the juridical situation was a simple quasi-delict by them committed upon the corporation, for which solidary liability should have been imposed upon all in the first place ISSUE: WON petitioner is guilty of quasi-delict HELD: Yes - The petitioner's assertion that he signed the questioned payroll checks in good faith has not been substantiated, he in particular not having testified or offered testimony to prove such claim. Upon the contrary, in spite of his being a vice-president and director of the Ace Advertising, the petitioner remained

TORTS WITH INDEPENDENT CIVIL ACTION


LIM v DE LEON G.R. No. L-22554 MARTIN; August 29, 1975
NATURE Appeal from the decision of the CFI FACTS - Plaintiff-appellant Jikil Taha sold to a certain Alberto Timbangcaya a motor launch named M/L "SAN RAFAEL". A year later or on April 9, 1962 Alberto Timbangcaya filed a complaint with the Office of the Provincial Fiscal of Palawan alleging that after the sale Jikil Taha forcibly took away the motor launch from him. - After conducting a preliminary investigation, Fiscal Francisco Ponce de Leon, in his capacity as Acting Provincial Fiscal of Palawan, filed with the Court of First Instance of Palawan the corresponding information for Robbery with Force and Intimidation upon Persons against Jikil Taha. - June 15, 1962, Fiscal Francisco Ponce de Leon, upon being informed that the motor launch was in Balabac, Palawan, wrote the Provincial Commander of Palawan requesting him to direct the detachment commander in Balabac to impound and take custody of the motor launch. - Fiscal Ponce de Leon reiterated his request to the Provincial Commander to impound the motor launch, explaining that its subsequent sale to a third party, plaintiff-appellant Delfin Lim, cannot prevent the court from taking custody of the same. Upon order of the Provincial Commander, defendant-appellee Orlando Maddela, Detachment Commander of Balabac, Palawan, seized the motor launch "SAN RAFAEL" from plaintiff-appellant Delfin Lim and impounded it. - Plaintiff-appellant Delfin Lim pleaded with Orlando Maddela to return the motor launch but the latter refused. Likewise, Jikil Taha through his counsel made representations with Fiscal Ponce de Leon to return the seized property to plaintiff-appellant Delfin Lim but Fiscal Ponce de Leon refused, on the ground that the same was the subject of a criminal offense. ISSUES 1. WON defendant-appellee Fiscal Ponce de Leon had the power to order the seizure of the motor launch in question without a warrant of search and seizure even if the same was admittedly the corpus delicti of the crime

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2. WON defendants-appellees are civilly liable to plaintiffs-appellants for damages allegedly suffered by them granting that the seizure of the motor launch was unlawful HELD 1. NO - Defendant-appellees admitted that when Orlando Maddela entered the premises of Delfin Lim and impounded the motor launch he was not armed with a search warrant; that he effected the seizure of the motor launch in the absence of and without the consent of Delfin Lim. There can be no question that without the proper search warrant, no public official has the right to enter the premises of another without his consent for the purpose of search and seizure. And since in the present case defendants-appellees seized the motor launch without a warrant, they have violated the constitutional right of plaintiffs-appellants against unreasonable search and seizure. 2. YES - Plaintiffs-appellants anchor their claim for damages on Articles 32 and 2219 of the New Civil Code which provide in part as follows: "ART. 32.Any public officer or employee, or any private individual, who directly or indirectly obstructs, defeats, violates or in any manner impedes or impairs any of the following rights and liberties of another person shall be liable to the latter for damages. xxx "(9)The rights to be secure in one's person, house, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures. xxx "The indemnity shall include moral damages. Exemplary damages may also be adjudicated." "ART. 2219.Moral damages may be recovered in the following and analogous cases: xxx "(6)Illegal search; xxx "(1)Acts and action referred to in Articles 21, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34 and 36." - Pursuant to the foregoing provisions, a person whose constitutional rights have been violated or impaired is entitled to actual and moral damages from the public officer or employee responsible therefor. In addition, exemplary damages may also be awarded. DISPOSITION Decision appealed from is hereby reversed and another one entered declaring the seizure illegal and ordering defendant-appellee Fiscal Francisco Ponce de Leon to pay to plaintiff-appellant Delfin Lim the sum of P3,000.00 as actual damages, plus P1,000.00 moral damages, and, in addition, P750.00 for attorney's fees.

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necessary to remind ourselves that certain basic rights and liberties are immutable and cannot be sacrificed to the transient needs or imperious demands of the ruling power. [b] The invocation of the doctrine of state immunity from suit totally misplaced. It cannot be construed as a blanket license or a roving commission untramelled by any constitutional restraint, to disregard or transgress upon the rights and liberties of the individual citizen enshrined in and protected by the Constitution. The Constitution remains the supreme law of the land to which all officials, high or low, civilian or military, owe obedience and allegiance at all times. [c] Art. 32 of CC which renders any public officer or employee or any private individual liable in damages for violating the Constitutional rights and liberties of another does not exempt the respondents from responsibility. Only judges are excluded from liability under the said article, provided their acts or omissions do not constitute a violation of the RPC or other penal statute. [d] Even assuming that the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus suspends petitioners' right of action for damages for illegal arrest and detention, it does not and cannot suspend their rights and causes of action for injuries suffered because of respondents' confiscation of their private belongings, the violation of their right to remain silent and to counsel and their right to protection against unreasonable searches and seizures and against torture and other cruel and inhuman treatment. 2. NO Ratio: Although the doctrine of respondent superior is applicable to the case, as contended by respondents, the decisive factor in this case is the language of Art. 32 CC. The law speaks of an officer or employee or person 'directly' or "indirectly" responsible for the violation of the constitutional rights and liberties of another. Thus, it is not the actor alone (i.e. the one directly responsible) who must answer for damages under Art. 32; the person indirectly responsible has also to answer for the damages or injury caused to the aggrieved party Reasoning: [a] The doctrine of respondent superior has been generally limited in its application to principal and agent or to master and servant (i.e. employer and employee) relationship. No such relationship exists between superior officers of the military and their subordinates. But in this case, Art. 32 governs. [b] By this provision, the principle of accountability of public officials under the Constitution acquires added meaning and acquires a larger dimension. A superior have to answer for the transgressions of his subordinates against the constitutionally protected rights and liberties of the citizen. Hence, Art. 32 of CC makes the persons who are directly, as well as indirectly, responsible for the transgression joint tortfeasors. [c] To determine the sufficiency of the cause of action, only the facts alleged in the complaint, and no others, should be considered. For this purpose, the motion to dismiss must hypothetically admit the truth of the facts alleged in the complaint. [d] So, under the above principles, it is difficult to justify the TCs dismissal for lack of cause of action the complaint against all the defendants, except Maj.Aguinaldo and MSgt. Balaba. The complaint contained allegations against all the defendants which, if admitted hypothetically, would be sufficient to establish a cause or causes of action against all of them under Art. 32 of CC. 3. NO. The body of the motion itself clearly indicated that the motion was filed on behalf of all the plaintiffs. And this must have been also the understanding of defendants' counsel himself for when he filed his comment on the motion, he furnished copies thereof, not just to the lawyers who signed the motion, but to all the lawyers of plaintiffs In filing the motion to set aside the resolution, the signing attorneys did so on behalf of all the plaintiff. They needed no specific

ABERCA V VER G.R. No. L-69866 YAP; April 15, 1988


NATURE: Petition for certiorari

FACTS This case stems from alleged illegal searches and seizures and other violations of the rights and liberties of plaintiffs by various intelligence units of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, known as Task Force Makabansa (TFM) ordered by General Fabian Ver "to conduct pre-emptive strikes against known communist-terrorist (CT) underground houses in view of increasing reports about CT plans to sow disturbances in Metro Manila," Plaintiffs allegations: That complying with said order of Ver, elements of the TFM raided several places, employing in most cases defectively issued judicial search warrants; that during these raids, certain members of the raiding party confiscated a number of purely personal items belonging to plaintiffs; that plaintiffs were arrested without proper warrants issued by the courts; that for some period after their arrest, they were denied visits of relatives and lawyers; that plaintiffs were interrogated in violation of their rights to silence and counsel; that military men who interrogated them employed threats, tortures and other forms of violence on them in order to obtain incriminatory information or confessions and in order to punish them; that all violations of plaintiffs constitutional rights were part of a concerted and deliberate plan to forcibly extract information and incriminatory statements from plaintiffs and to terrorize, harass and punish them, said plans being previously known to and sanctioned by defendants. Plaintiffs sought actual/compensatory damages of P39,030; moral damages of at least P150K each or a total of P3M; exemplary damages of at least P150K each or a total of P3M; and attorney's fees not less than P200K. Respondents contentions: A motion to dismiss was filed by defendants, through their counsel, then Sol-Gen. Estelito Mendoza, alleging that (1) plaintiffs may not cause a judicial inquiry into the circumstances of their detention in the guise of a damage suit because the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is suspended; (2) assuming that the courts can entertain the present action, defendants are immune from liability for acts done in the performance of their official duties; and (3) the complaint states no cause of action against the defendants. ISSUES 1. WON the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus bars a civil action for damages for illegal searches conducted by military personnel and other violations of rights and liberties guaranteed under the Constitution. 2. WON a superior officer under the notion of respondent superior be answerable for damages, jointly and severally with his subordinates, to the person whose constitutional rights and liberties have been violated. 3. WON trial court correct in dismissing the complaint with respect to (dome of the) plaintiffs on the basis of the alleged failure of said plaintiffs to file MFR of the court's resolution granting the respondent's motion to dismiss HELD 1. NO. Ratio: The suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus does not destroy petitioners' right and cause of action for damages for illegal arrest and detention and other violations of their constitutional rights. The suspension does not render valid an otherwise illegal arrest or detention. What is suspended is merely the right of the individual to seek release from detention through the writ of habeas corpus as a speedy means of obtaining his liberty. Reasoning: [a] The purpose Art. 32 CC is to provide a sanction to the deeply cherished rights and freedoms enshrined in the Constitution. Its message is clear; no man may seek to violate those sacred rights with impunity. In times of great upheaval or of social and political stress, when the temptation is strongest to yield to the law of force rather than the force of law, it is

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authority to do that. The authority of an attorney to appear for and in behalf of a party can be assumed, unless questioned or challenged by the adverse party or the party concerned, which was never done in this case. DISPOSITION: Petition granted. Case remanded to the respondent court for further proceedings. SEPARATE OPINION: TEEHANKEE, C.J., concurring: - The Court's judgment at bar makes clear that all persons, be they public officers or employees, or members of the military or police force or private individuals who directly or indirectly obstruct, defeat, violate or in any manner impede or impair the constitutional rights and civil liberties of another person, stand liable and may be sued in court for damages as provided in Art. 32 of CC. - The case at bar specifically upholds and reinstates the civil action for damages filed in the court below by petitioners-plaintiffs for illegal searches conducted by military personnel and other violations of their constitutional rights and liberties. At the same time it rejects the automatic application of the principle of respondent superior or command responsibility that would hold a superior officer jointly and severally accountable for damages, including moral and exemplary, with his subordinates who committed such transgressions. However, the judgment gives the caveat that a superior officer must not abdicate his duty to properly supervise his subordinates for he runs the risk of being held responsible for gross negligence and of being held under the cited provision of the Civil Code as indirectly and solidarily accountable with the tortfeasor.

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Instructions which the petitioners miserably failed to do. And thirdly, they should have filed a third-party complaint against the raiding team for contribution or any other relief, in respect of respondents' claim for Recovery of Sum of Money with Damages. Again, they did not. WON an award for moral damages should be awarded Yes. It is consistently ruled that moral damages are not awarded to penalize the defendant but to compensate the plaintiff for the injuries he may have suffered. Conformably with our ruling in Lim vs. Ponce de Leon, op. cit., moral damages can be awarded in the case at bench. There can be no doubt that petitioners must have suffered sleepless nights, serious anxiety, and wounded feelings due the tortious raid caused by petitioners. Private respondents' avowals of embarrassment and humiliation during the seizure of their merchandise were supported by their testimonies. The wantonness of the wrongful seizure justifies the award of exemplary damages. It will also serve as a stern reminder to all and sundry that the constitutional protection against unreasonable search and seizure is a virile reality and not a mere burst of rhetoric. The all encompassing protection extends against intrusions directly done both by government and indirectly by private entities. Disposition IN VIEW WHEREFORE, the appealed decision is AFFIRMED WITH MODIFICATION. We impose a SIX PERCENT (6%) interest from January 9, 1987 on the TWO THOUSAND PESOS (P2,000.00) for the unreturned twenty-six (26) pieces of girl scouts items and a TWELVE PERCENT (12%) interest, in lieu of SIX PERCENT (6%), on the said amount upon finality of this Decision until the payment thereof. Costs against petitioners.

returned despite demands. Private respondents had to go personally to petitioners' place of business to recover their goods. Even then, not all the seized items were turned. The other items returned were of inferior quality. Private respondent then filed a Civil Case against the petitioners for sums of money and damages. The trial court ruled for the private respondents. The decision was appealed to the respondent court. It affirmed the decision with modification MHP filed a petition for certiorari before the SC. Issue/s and Held WON the search and seizure was legal No. The evidence did not justify the warrantless search and seizure of private respondents' goods. Petitioner corporation received information that private respondents were illegally selling Boy Scouts items and paraphernalia in October 1983. The specific date and time are not established in the evidence adduced by the parties. De Guzman then made a surveillance of the stores of private respondents. They reported to the Philippine Constabulary and on October 25, 1983, the raid was made on the stores of private respondents and the supposed illicit goods were seized. The progression of time between the receipt of the information and the raid of the stores of private respondents shows there was sufficient time for petitioners and the PC raiding party to apply for a judicial warrant. Despite the sufficiency of time, they did not apply for a warrant and seized the goods of private respondents. In doing so, they took the risk of a suit for damages in case the seizure would be proved to violate the right of private respondents against unreasonable search and seizure. The search and seizure were clearly illegal. There was no probable cause for the seizure. Probable cause for a search has been defined as "such facts and circumstances which would lead a reasonably discreet and prudent man to believe that an offense has been committed and that the objects sought in connection with the offense are in the place sought to be searched." These facts and circumstances were not in any way shown by the petitioners to justify their warrantless search and seizure. Indeed, after a preliminary investigation, the Provincial Fiscal of Rizal dismissed their complaint for unfair competition and later ordered the return of the seized goods. WON MHP Garments is liable Yes. The omission will not exculpate petitioners. The respondent court correctly granted damages to private respondents. Petitioners were indirectly involved in transgressing the right of private respondents against unreasonable search and seizure. Firstly, they instigated the raid pursuant to their covenant in the Memorandum Agreement to undertake the prosecution in court of all illegal sources of scouting supplies. The raid was conducted with the active participation of their employee. Larry de Guzman who did not lift a finger to stop the seizure of the boy and girl scouts items. By standing by and apparently assenting thereto, he was liable to the same extent as the officers themselves. So with the petitioner corporation which even received for safekeeping the goods unreasonably seized by the PC raiding team and de Guzman, and refused to surrender them for quite a time despite the dismissal of its complaint for unfair competition. Secondly, Letter of Instruction No. 1299 already directs all law enforcement agencies of the Republic of the Philippines, to apprehend immediately unauthorized manufacturers and distributors of Scout paraphernalia, upon proper application by the Boy Scouts of the Philippines and/or Girl Scouts of the Philippines for warrant of arrest and/or search warrant with a judge, or such other responsible officer as may be authorized by law; and to impound the said paraphernalia to be used as evidence in court or other appropriate administrative body it orders the immediate and strict compliance with the

MHP GARMENTS, INC. vs. CA PUNO; 22 September 1994


Nature - Petition for Certiorari Facts -MHP Garments, Inc., was awarded by the Boy Scouts of the Philippines, the exclusive franchise to sell and distribute official Boy Scouts uniforms, supplies, badges, and insignias. In their Memorandum Agreement, petitioner corporation was given the authority to "undertake or cause to be undertaken the prosecution in court of all illegal sources of scout uniforms and other scouting supplies." -Sometime in October 1983, MHP received information that private respondents Agnes Villa Cruz, Mirasol Lugatiman, and Gertrudes Gonzales were selling Boy Scouts items and paraphernalia without any authority. De Guzman, an employee of petitioner corporation, was tasked to undertake the necessary surveillance and to make a report of the Philippine Constabulary (PC). De Guzman, Peafiel, and two (2) other constabulary men of the Reaction Force Battalion went to the stores of respondents at the Marikina Public Market. Without any warrant, they seized the boy and girl scouts pants, dresses, and suits on display at respondents' stalls. The seizure caused a commotion and embarrassed private respondents. The items were then turned over by Captain Peafiel to petitioner corporation for safekeeping. A criminal complaint for unfair competition was then filed against private respondents. After a preliminary investigation, the Provincial Fiscal of Rizal dismissed the complaint against all the private respondents. He also ordered the return of the seized items which was not immediately

MARCIA V CA (PAJE) 205 PHIL 147 RELOVA; January 27, 1983 NATURE
Petition for certiorari

FACTS
- Paje is a driver of a Victory Liner Bus - His bus collided with the jeep driven by Clemente Marcia, causing the latters death and physical injuries to herein petitioners, Edgar Marcia and Renato Yap - Paje was charged with homicide and serious physical injuries thru reckless imprudence. A civil case was also instituted against him by herein petitioners for reckless imprudence and negligence in driving the passenger bus. - He was convicted in the criminal case in the RTC. However, he was acquitted in the CA. The CA ruled that criminal negligence is wanting and that Paje was not even guilty of civil negligence, for the case was of pure accident. - The defendants presented the copy of said criminal case to the court handling the civil case against them. The civil case was dismissed.

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ISSUES WON the acquittal in the criminal case would result to a dismissal in the civil case HELD YES - The acquittal of the accused from the criminal charge will not necessarily extinguish the civil liability unless the court declares in the judgment that the fact from which the civil liability might arise did not exist. - Petitioner also relies on Art 33 CC. However, the said article speaks only of defamation, fraud and physical injuries. The injuries suffered by herein petitioners were alleged to be the result of criminal negligence; they were not inflicted with malice. Hence, no independent civil action for damages may be instituted in connection therewith. Otherwise stated, unless the act from which the civil liability arises is declared to be non-existent in the final judgment, the extinction of the criminal liability will not carry with it the extinction of the civil liability DISPOSITIVE Decision affirmed

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WON the CA erred in holding that the publication of the news item was not attended with malice to thus free respondents of liability for damages HELD NO. Every citizen of course has the right to enjoy a good name and reputation, but we do not consider that the respondents, under the circumstances of this case, had violated said right or abused the freedom of the press. Ratio. The newspapers should be given such leeway and tolerance as to enable them to courageously and effectively perform their important role in our democracy. In the preparation of stories, press reporters and [editors] usually have to race with their deadlines; and consistently with good faith and reasonable care, they should not be held to account, to a point of suppression, for honest mistakes or imperfection in the choice of words. Reasoning. First discussed applicable provisions (A33, 19, 21 NCC): Article 33 contemplates a civil action for the recovery of damages that is entirely unrelated to the purely criminal aspect of the case. A civil action for libel under this article shall be instituted and prosecuted to final judgment and proved by preponderance of evidence separately from and entirely independent of the institution, pendency or result of the criminal action because it is governed by the provisions of the New Civil Code and not by the Revised Penal Code governing the criminal offense charged and the civil liability arising therefrom. -then discussed how to determine if a published work is libelous: In actions for damages for libel, it is axiomatic that the published work alleged to contain libelous material must be examined and viewed as a whole. -then discussed the petitioners allegation that the news item as a malicious sensationalization failed: even though the police blotter only shows 1 count of abduction and rape, respondent was present when Emelita executed her sworn-statement where she reported an abduction with rape and an abduction incident (where no rape occurred, but was about to happen) so respondents article was not maliciously sensationalized. The presentation of the news item subject of petitioners complaint may have been in a sensational manner, but it is not per se illegal. Respondents could of course have been more circumspect in their choice of words as the headline and first seven paragraphs of the news item give the impression that a certain director of the NIAS actually committed the crimes complained of by Emelita. The succeeding paragraphs (in which petitioner and complainant Emelita were eventually identified) sufficiently convey to the readers, however, that the narration of events was only an account of what Emelita had reported at the police headquarters. -then mentioned doctrine: The newspapers should be given such leeway and tolerance as to enable them to courageously and effectively perform their important role in our democracy. In the preparation of stories, press reporters and [editors] usually have to race with their deadlines; and consistently with good faith and reasonable care, they should not be held to account, to a point of suppression, for honest mistakes or imperfection in the choice of words. Disposition. WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby DENIED. SO ORDERED

HELD 1. YES. Ratio Section 2, Rule 111 of the Rules of Court in relation to Article 33 of the Civil Code is the applicable provision. The two enactments are quoted hereinbelow: "Sec, 2. Independent civil action. - 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. " - "Art. 33. In cases of defamation, fraud, and physical injuries, a civil action for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action, may be brought by the injured party. Such civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution, and shall require only a preponderance of evidence." Obiter - There are at least two things about Art. 33 of the Civil Code which are worth noting, namely: 1. The civil action for damages which it allows to be instituted is ex-delicto. This is manifest from the provision which uses the expressions "criminal action" and "criminal prosecution." Tolentino says: "While the State is the complainant in the criminal case, the injured individual is the one most concerned because it is he who has suffered directly. He should be permitted to demand reparation for the wrong which peculiarly affects him." 2. The term "physical injuries" is used in a generic sense. It is not the crime of physical injuries defined in the Revised Penal Code. It includes not only physical injuries but consummated, frustrated and attempted homicide. Dispositive Petition is GRANTED; the order dismissing Civil Case No. 141 is SET ASIDE

MADEJA V CARO ABAD SANTOS, J.: December 21, 1983


NATURE Petition which seeks to set aside the order of the respondent judge granting the defendant's motion to dismiss FACTS - Dr. Eva A. Japzon is accused of homicide through reckless imprudence for the death of Cleto Madeja after an appendectomy. The complaining witness is the widow of the deceased, Carmen L. Madeja. The information states that: "The offended party Carmen L. Madeja reserving her right to file a separate civil action for damages." - The criminal case still pending, Madeja sued Dr. Japzon for damages in the same court. She alleged that her husband died because of the gross negligence of Dr. Japzon. The respondent judge granted the defendant's motion to dismiss which invoked Section 3 (a) of Rule 111 of the Rules of Court which reads: "Sec. 3. Other civil actions arising from offenses. - In all cases not included in the preceding section the following rules shall be observed: (a) Criminal and civil actions arising from the same offense may be instituted separately, but after the criminal action has been commenced the civil action can not be instituted until final judgment has been rendered in the criminal action.". . . ISSUES 1. WON an independent civil action may be filed during the pendency of the criminal case

ARAFILES v PHILIPPINE JOURNALISTS, INC CARPIO MORALES, J., March 25, 2004
NATURE Petition for review of CA Deci FACTS (Consti II Case) -Respondent Morales wrote an article for Peoples Journal Tonight based on the sworn statement in the police blotter and interview of Emelita Despuig where Despuig alleged that Arafiles raped her the month before then attempted to rape her the night she filed a complaint. Morales attempted to contact Arafiles but since the latters office was still closed at that time (past 12mn he works for NIAS-PAGASA), he was not able to do so. -About a year following the published article, Arafiles filed action for damages based on the alleged grossly malicious and overly sensationalized report by Morales which cast aspersions on his character, being the object of public contempt and ridicule as he was depicted as a sex-crazed stalker and serial rapist. -RTC: in favor of Arafiles -CA: in favor of Morales, et. al. based on doctrine of fair comment ISSUE

MVRS V ISLAMIC DAWAH COUNCIL G.R. No. 135306 BELLOSILLO; January 28, 2003
NATURE Petition to review decision of CA

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FACTS - The ISLAMIC DA'WAH COUNCIL OF THE PHIL (IDCP), a local federation of more than 70 Muslim religious orgs, and some individual Muslims filed in the RTC Manila a complaint for damages in their own behalf and as a class suit in behalf of the Muslim members nationwide against MVRS PUBLICATIONS, et.al. - Complaint alleged that what was published in BULGAR was insulting and damaging to the Muslims; that these words alluding to the pig as the God of the Muslims was not only published out of sheer ignorance but with intent to hurt the feelings, cast insult and disparage the Muslims and Islam; that on account of these libelous words Bulgar insulted not only the Muslims in the Phil but the entire Muslim world, esp. every Muslim individual in non-Muslim countries. - MVRS claimed it was merely an expression of belief/opinion and was published without malice. Also, it did not mention respondents as object of the article, hence, were not entitled to damages. RTC dismissed: plaintiffs failed to establish their cause of action since the persons allegedly defamed by the article were not specifically identified. CA reversed: it was "clear from the disputed article that the defamation was directed to all adherents of Islamic faith. ISSUE 1. WON elements of libel exist 2. WON the cause of action should rise from an intentional tortuous act causing mental distress HELD 1. NO. Reasoning Defamation means the offense of injuring a person's character, fame or reputation through false and malicious statements. Words which are merely insulting are not actionable as libel or slander per se, and mere words of general abuse however opprobrious, ill-natured, or vexatious, whether written or spoken, do not constitute a basis for an action for defamation in the absence of an allegation for special damages. 2. NO. The cause of action is libel. Ratio Action arising from an intentional tortuous act causing mental distress cannot be sustained in this case, for such action is personal in nature, and since no particular individual was identified in the disputed article, such cause of action cannot be sustained. Torts with independent civil action: DEFAMATION An "emotional distress" tort action is personal in nature; it is a civil action filed by an individual to assuage the injuries to his emotional tranquility due to personal attacks on his character. - The purported damage caused by the published article falls under principle of relational harm - which includes harm to social relationships in the community in the form of defamation; as distinguished from the principle of reactive harm - which includes injuries to individual emotional tranquility in the form of an infliction of emotional distress. The present case falls within the application of the relational harm principle of tort actions for defamation. - To recover for this the plaintiff must show that: (a) conduct of the defendant was intentional or in reckless disregard of plaintiff; (b) conduct was extreme and outrageous; (c) causal connection between defendant's conduct and the plaintiff's mental distress; and, (d) the plaintiff's mental distress was extreme and severe.

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- In disregard of the pertinent rules, regulations and policies of the respondent bank, Salta indiscriminately granted certain loans mentioned in the complaints filed by PNB, in manner characterized by negligence, fraud and manifest partiality, and upon securities not commensurate with the amount of the loans. - PNB filed two civil actions to recover losses the bank suffered (Civil Case No. 79583, Civil Case No. 88343). With this the bank filed a criminal action against Salta, for violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. - Salta was acquitted in the criminal case, and filed Motions to Dismiss in each of the two civil cases. It is in the resolution of the motions to dismiss that Judges de Veyra and Purisima of the CFI of Manila took diametrically opposing views, the former denying the motion, the latter granting it. ISSUE WON a decision of acquittal in a criminal case operates to dismiss a separate civil action filed on the basis of the same facts as alleged in the criminal case (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act). HELD NO. Ratio The civil action permitted therein to be filed separately from the criminal action may proceed independently of the criminal proceedings "regardless of the result of the latter." Acquittal in the criminal case will not be an obstacle for the civil case to prosper unless in the criminal case the Court makes a finding that even civilly, the accused would not be liable. Reasoning ART 33. In cases of defamation, fraud, and physical injuries, a civil action for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action, may be brought by the injured party. Such civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution, and shall require only a preponderance of evidence. - The filing in this case of a civil action separate from the criminal action is fully warranted under the provision of Article 33 of the New Civil Code. The criminal case is for the prosecution of an offense the main element of which is fraud, one of the kinds of crime mentioned in the aforecited provision. Based on the same acts for which the criminal action was filed, the civil actions very clearly alleged fraud and negligence as having given rise to the cause of action averred in the complaints. - The offenses specified in Article 33 are of such a nature, unlike other offenses not mentioned, that they may be made the subject of a separate civil action because of the distinct separability of their respective juridical cause or basis of action. This is clearly illustrated in the case of swindling, a specie of an offense committed by means of fraud, where the civil case may be filed separately and proceed independently of the criminal case, regardless of the result of the latter. - That there was fraud committed by the defendant in granting the aforesaid loans which rendered him liable for his acts, which fraud is positively and easily identifiable in the manner and scheme aforementioned. - JUSTICE JBL REYES: in the case of an independent civil actions under the Civil Code, the result of the criminal case, whether acquittal or conviction, would be entirely irrelevant to the civil action. This seems to be the spirit of the law when it decided to make these actions `entirely separate and distinct' from the criminal action. Hence in these cases, I think Rule 107 Sec. 1(d) does not apply.

- Any party seeking recovery for mental anguish must prove more than mere worry, anxiety, embarrassment, or anger. (AmJur) Disposition Petition granted. Decision reversed.

SEPARATE OPINION VITUG [concur]


- The present controversy stems from a civil action for damages and not from a criminal complaint. CC recognizes the possibility of such a civil action either pursuant to Art 26, par. 4, to the effect that although it may not constitute a criminal offense, vexing or humiliating another on account of his religious beliefs xxx can give rise to a cause of action for damages, or to Art. 33 which provides that in case of defamation, a civil complaint for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal case, may be brought by the injured party. - In the present case, the article relates to the entire Muslim population and not just to the IDCP or to any of the individual respondents. There is no direct reference or allusion to the federation or any of its members, or to any of the individual complainants. Respondents scarcely can claim having been singled out for social censure pointedly resulting in damages.

CARPIO [dissent]
- I dissent not because the newspaper article in question is libelous, but because it constitutes an intentional tortious act causing mental distress to those whom private respondent IDCP represents. - Both RTC and CA found the article insulting and humiliating to Muslims, causing wounded feelings and mental anguish to believers of Islam. This finding of fact establishes that petitioners have inflicted on private respondents an intentional wrongful act - humiliating persons because of their religious beliefs.

AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ [dissent]

- Focal point of claim for damages: insult caused by the article that the Muslims worship the pig as their God which is absolutely contrary to their basic belief as Muslims that there is only one God, and, that the greatest sin in Islam is to worship things or persons other than Allah. - The article is not only an imputation of irreligious conduct but also a downright misrepresentation of the religious beliefs of Muslims. Liability for libel does not depend on the intention of the defamer, but on the fact of defamation.

SALTA V DE VEYRA 202 Phil 527 DE CASTRO; September 30, 1982


FACTS - Two cases involving the same issue disposed of by two judges in a manner directly in opposition of each other. For a uniform ruling that would authoritatively settle this regrettable conflict of opinion, the two cases have been consolidated for a single decision. - Salta was an employee of the PNB assigned as Manager of the Malolos' branch. His duty was to grant loans, or only to recommend the granting of loans, depending on the amount of the loan applied for.

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- It is significant to note that under Article 31 [11] of the New Civil Code, it is made clear that the civil action permitted therein to be filed separately from the criminal action may proceed independently of the criminal proceedings "regardless of the result of the latter." DISPOSITION The decision of Justice De Veyra is affirmed.

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defamation, fraud and physical injuries. Estafa falls under fraud. 3. NO. Private respondent Chi's signature in the dorsal portion of the trust receipt did not bind him solidarily with Philippine Rayon. 3a. YES. SCs own reading of the questioned solidary guaranty clause yields the conclusion that the obligation of Chi is only that of a guarantor. Reasoning Last sentence of the clause speaks of waiver of exhaustion, which, nevertheless, is ineffective in this case because the space therein for the party whose property may not be exhausted was not filled up. -The clause "we jointly and severally agree and undertake" refers to the undertaking of the two (2) parties who are to sign it or to the liability existing between themselves. It does not refer to the undertaking between either one or both of them on the one hand and the petitioner on the other with respect to the liability described under the trust receipt. Elsewise stated, their liability is not divisible as between them, i.e., it can be enforced to its full extent against any one of them. -Any doubt as to the import, or true intent of the solidary guaranty clause should be resolved against the petitioner since the trust receipt, together with the questioned solidary guaranty clause, is a contract of adhesion which must be strictly construed against the party responsible for its preparation. -By his signing, Chi became the sole guarantor. The attestation by witnesses and the acknowledgement before a notary public are not required by law to make a party liable on the instrument. Contracts shall be obligatory in whatever form they may have been entered into, provided all the essential requisites for their validity are present; however, when the law requires that a contract be in some form in order that it may be valid or enforceable, or that it be proved in a certain way, that requirement is absolute and indispensable. With respect to a guaranty, which is a promise to answer for the debt or default of another, the law merely requires that it, or some note or memorandum thereof, be in writing. Otherwise, it would be unenforceable unless ratified. While the acknowledgement of a surety before a notary public is required to make the same a public document, under Article 1358 of the Civil Code, a contract of guaranty does not have to appear in a public document. -Reading Section 13 of PD No. 115: It is clear that if the violation or offense is committed by a corporation, partnership, association or other juridical entities, the penalty of imprisonment shall be imposed upon the directors, officers, employees or other officials or persons therein responsible for the offense. However, it is these corporations, partnerships, associations, etc, which are made liable for the civil liability arising from the criminal offense. -Since that violation of a trust receipt constitutes fraud under Article 33 of the Civil Code, petitioner was acting well within its rights in filing an independent civil action to enforce the civil liability arising therefrom against Philippine Rayon.

PRUDENTIAL BANK V IAC (Philippine Rayon Mills & Anacleto Chi) 216 SCRA 257 DAVIDE, JR.; G.R. No. 74886 December 8, 1992
NATURE Petition for review of the decision of IAC, which affirmed in toto the decision of CFI Quezon City in a civil action instituted by the petitioner for the recovery of a sum of money representing the amount paid by it to the Nissho Company Ltd. of Japan for textile machinery imported by the Philippine Rayon Mills, Inc., represented by co-defendant Anacleto R. Chi. FACTS -August 8, 1962: Philippine Rayon Mills, Inc. entered into a contract with Nissho Co., Ltd. of Japan for the importation of textile machineries under a five-year deferred payment plan. To effect payment for said machineries, Phil. Rayon applied for and was granted a commercial letter of credit with the Prudential Bank and Trust Company in favor of Nissho. Against this letter of credit, drafts were drawn and issued by Nissho, which were all paid by the Prudential Bank through its correspondent in Japan, the Bank of Tokyo, Ltd. As indicated on their faces, two of these drafts were accepted by the Phil Rayon through its president, Anacleto R. Chi, while the others were not. -Upon arrival of the machineries, the Prudential Bank indorsed the shipping documents to the Phil Rayon which accepted delivery of the same. To enable the Phil Rayon to take delivery of the machineries, it executed, by prior arrangement with the Prudential Bank, a trust receipt which was signed by Anacleto R. Chi in his capacity as president of Phil Rayon. -At the back of the trust receipt is a printed form to be accomplished by two sureties who, by the very terms and conditions thereof, were to be jointly and severally liable to the Prudential Bank should the Phil Rayon fail to pay the total amount or any portion of the drafts issued by Nissho and paid for by Prudential Bank. The Phil Rayon was able to take delivery of the textile machineries and installed the same at its factory site at 69 Obudan Street, Quezon City. -Sometime in 1967, the Phil Rayon ceased business operation. On December 29, 1969, Phil Rayon's factory was leased by Yupangco Cotton Mills for an annual rental of P200,000.00. The lease was renewed on January 3, 1973. On January 5, 1974, all the textile machineries in the Phil Rayon's factory were sold to AIC Development Corporation for P300,000.00.

-The obligation of the Phil Rayon arising from the letter of credit and the trust receipt remained unpaid and unliquidated. Repeated formal demands for the payment of the said trust receipt yielded no result Hence, the present action for the collection of the principal amount of P956,384.95 was filed on October 3, 1974 against the Phil Rayon and Anacleto R. Chi. Defendants Defenses lack of cause of action; prescription; laches Lower Courts Ruling Both the CFI and the IAC ruled that Philippine Rayon could be held liable for the two (2) drafts because only these appear to have been accepted by the latter after due presentment. The liability for the remaining ten (10) drafts did not arise because the same were not presented for acceptance. In short, both courts concluded that acceptance of the drafts by Philippine Rayon was indispensable to make the latter liable thereon. ISSUES: 1. Whether presentment for acceptance of the drafts was indispensable to make Philippine Rayon liable thereon; 2. Whether Philippine Rayon is liable on the basis of the trust receipt; 3. Whether private respondent Chi is jointly and severally liable with Philippine Rayon for the obligation sought to be enforced 3a. If not, WON he may be considered a guarantor 3b. If he is a guarantor, WON the case should have been dismissed on the ground of lack of cause of action as there was no prior exhaustion of Philippine Rayon's properties. HELD: 1. NO. Presentment for acceptance is necessary only in the cases expressly provided for in Section 143 of the Negotiable Instruments Law (NIL). The parties herein agree, and the trial court explicitly ruled, that the subject, drafts are sight drafts which do not require presentment for acceptance. They are, pursuant to Section 7 of the NIL, payable on demand. And even if these were not sight drafts, thereby necessitating acceptance, it would be the petitioner and not Philippine Rayon which had to accept the same for the latter was not the drawee. 2. YES. -And although it is true that the petitioner commenced a criminal action for the violation of the Trust Receipts Law, no legal obstacle prevented it from enforcing the civil liability arising out of the trust, receipt in a separate civil action. Under Section 13 of the Trust Receipts Law, the failure of an entrustee to turn over the proceeds of the sale of goods, documents or instruments covered by a trust receipt to the extent of the amount owing to the entruster or as appear in the trust receipt or to return said goods, documents or instruments if they were not sold or disposed of in accordance with the terms of the trust receipt shall constitute the crime of estafa, punishable under the provisions of Art.315, par. 1(b) of the RPC. -Under Article 33 of the Civil Code, a civil action for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action, may be brought by the injured party in cases of

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3b. NO. Excussion is not a condition sine qua non for the institution of an action against a guarantor. There was nothing procedurally objectionable in impleading private respondent Chi as a co-defendant in the civil case for the collection of a sum of money. As a matter of fact, Section 6, Rule 3 of the Rules of Court on permissive joinder of parties explicitly allows it. -This is the equity rule relating to multifariousness. It is based on trial convenience and is designed to permit the joinder of plaintiffs or defendants whenever there is a common question of law or fact. It will save the parties unnecessary work, trouble and expense. -However, Chi's liability is limited to the principal obligation in the trust receipt plus all the accessories thereof including judicial costs; with respect to the latter, he shall only be liable for those costs incurred after being judicially required to pay. Interest and damages, being accessories of the principal obligation, should also be paid; these, however, shall run only from the date of the filing of the complaint. Attorney's fees may even be allowed in appropriate cases. Disposition Petition granted. Philippine Rayon Mills, Inc. declared liable on the 12 drafts in question and on the trust receipt. Private respondent Anacleto R. Chi declared secondarily liable on the trust receipt.

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- The term "physical injuries" in Article 33 includes bodily injuries causing death. In other words, the civil action for damages could have been commenced by appellants immediately upon the death of their decedent, Cipriano Capuno, and the same would not have been stayed by the filing of the criminal action for homicide through reckless imprudence. But the complaint here was filed only on September 26, 1958, or after the lapse of more than five years. - The foregoing considerations dispose of appellants' contention that the fouryear period of prescription in this case was interrupted by the filing of the criminal action against Jon Elordi inasmuch as they had neither waived the civil action nor reserved the right to institute it separately. Such reservation was not then necessary; without having made it they could file as in fact they did a separate civil action even during the pendency of the criminal case; and consequently, as held in Paulan v. Sarabia, supra, "the institution of a criminal action cannot have the effect of interrupting the institution of a civil action based on a quasi-delict." - As to whether or not Rule 111, Section 2, of the Revised Rules of Court which requires the reservation of the right to institute a separate and independent civil action in the cases provided for in Articles 31, 32, 33, 34, and 2177 of the Civil Code affects the question of prescription, the said rule does not apply in the present case. DISPOSTIION The order appealed from was affirmed, without costs.

-The appearance and intervention of Attorneys Diokno and Ilagan was disallowed by the Court and that of Attorney Navarro was disallowed in an amending order. No appeal was taken from either of the two orders. - The parties in the civil case entered into a "Compromise and Settlement." For P290,000.00 the Buan Estate gave up its claims for damages, including the claim for reimbursement of the sum of P2,623.00 previously paid to the heirs of Capuno "under the Workmen's Compensation Act." - The Court approved the compromise and accordingly dismissed the case. - At that time the criminal case was still pending; judgment was rendered wherein the accused Elordi was acquitted of the charges against him. Prior thereto, herein appellants commenced a civil action for damages against the Pepsi-Cola Bottling Company of the Philippines and Jon Elordi. - This is the action which, upon appellees' motion, was dismissed by the Court a quo in its order of February 29, 1960, from which order the present appeal has been taken. - The grounds upon which appellees based their motion for dismissal and which the Court found to be "well taken" were; (1) that the action had already prescribed; and (2) that appellees had been released from appellants' claim for damages by virtue of the payment to the latter of the sum of P2,623.00 by the Buan Estate under the Workmen's Compensation Act, which sum, in turn, was sought to be recovered by the said Estate from appellees in Civil Case No. 838 but finally settled by them in their compromise. ISSUE WON the action had already prescribed. RULING YES. - There can be no doubt that the present action is one for recovery of damages based on a quasi-delict, which action must be instituted within four (4) years (Article 1146, Civil Code). - Appellants originally sought to enforce their claim ex-delicto, that is, under the provisions of the Penal Code, when they intervened in the criminal case against Jon Elordi. The information therein, it may be recalled, was amended precisely to include an allegation concerning damages suffered by the heirs of the victims of the accident for which Elordi was being prosecuted. - But appellants' intervention was subsequently disallowed and they did not appeal from the Court's order to the effect. - And when they commenced the civil action on September 26, 1958 the criminal case was still pending, showing that appellants then chose to pursue the remedy afforded by the Civil Code, for otherwise that action would have been premature and in any event would have been concluded by the subsequent judgment of acquittal in the criminal case. - In filing the civil action as they did appellants correctly considered it as entirely independent of the criminal action, pursuant to Articles 31 and 33 of the Civil Code, which read: ART. 31. When the civil action is based on an obligation not arising from the act or omission complained of as a felony, such civil action may proceed independently of the criminal proceedings and regardless of the result of the latter. ART. 33. In cases of defamation, fraud, and physical injuries, a civil action for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action, may be brought by the injured party. Such civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution, and shall require only a preponderance of evidence.

CAPUNO V PEPSI-COLA BOTTLING COMPANY OF THE PHILIPPINES MAKALINTAL; April 30, 1965
FACTS - The case arose from a vehicular collision. - Involved were a Pepsi-Cola delivery truck driven by Jon Elordi and a private car driven by Capuno. - The collision proved fatal to the latter as well as to his passengers, the spouses Florencio Buan and Rizalina Paras. - Elordi was charged with triple homicide through reckless imprudence in the CFI of Pampanga. The information was subsequently amended to include claims for damages by the heirs of the three victims. - While the criminal case was pending, the Intestate Estate of the Buan spouses and their heirs filed a civil action, also for damages, in the CFI of Tarlac against the Pepsi-Cola Bottling Company of the Philippines and Jon Elordi. - Included in the complaint was a claim for indemnity in the sum of P2,623.00 allegedly paid by the Estate to the heirs of Capuno under the Workmen's Compensation Act. -In the criminal case both the heirs of Capuno and the Estate of were represented by their respective counsel as private prosecutors: Attorney Ricardo Y. Navarro and Attorneys Jose W. Diokno and Augusto M. Ilagan. - In view of the filing of the civil action the accused Jon Elordi moved to strike out the appearances of these private prosecutors in the criminal case. Grounds for the motion were (1) that as the Capuno heirs were concerned, they no longer had any interest to protect in the criminal case since they had already claimed and received compensation for the death of their decedent; and (2) that on the part of the Estate of Buan its right to intervene in said case had been abated by the civil action.

CORPUS V PAJE 28 SCRA 1062 CAPISTRANO; July 31, 1969


NATURE Direct appeal from an order of the Court of First Instance of Rizal FACTS - December 23, 1956 Felardo Paje was driving a Victory Liner bus. It collided with a jeepney driven by Clemente Marcia in Lubao, Pampanga. As a result of the collision, Marcia died while two other people were physically injured. - An information for homicide and double serious physical injuries through reckless imprudence was filed against Paje. Marcias heirs reserved their right to institute a separate civil action against Paje. Paje was later found guilty on November 7, 1960. - November 21, 1961 Pending Pajes appeal, the window and children of Marcia instituted the separate civil action for damages arising from the accident against Paje and Victory Liner, praying that the defendants be jointly and severally liable. - November 9, 1962 Paje was acquitted by the appellate court, saying that the collision was purely an accident. - December 29, 1962 Paje filed a motion to dismiss the civil action on the ground that his acquittal barred the said action but the motion was denied. Petitioners Claim > The petitioners claim that the Lower Court erred in acquitting Paje and that his acquittal was a bar to the civil action. Quoting Chantangco vs. Abaroai: It is true that one of the plaintiffs in the present case reserved whatever right he may have had to bring a civil action. This was obviously of no avail, inasmuch as there resulted a judgment for the defendant, and the plain inference from

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the foregoing is that a verdict of acquittal must carry with it exemption from civil responsibility. Respondents Comments: > At the pre-trial of the civil case, the defendants asked the court to rule on their special defense that plaintiffs' cause of action based upon a quasi-delict had prescribed considering that the complaint was brought four years and eleven months after the collision and that according to Article 1144 of the Civil Code an action based upon a quasi-delict must be instituted within four years. The lower court ruled that the action had already prescribed. ISSUE WON the civil action against Paje can still prosper despite his acquittal HELD NO Ratio Criminal negligence, that is, reckless imprudence, is not one of the three crimes mentioned in Article 33 of the Civil Code which authorizes the institution of an independent civil action, that is, of an entirely separate and distinct civil action for damages, which shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution and shall be proved only by a preponderance of evidence. Thearticle mentions only the crimes of defamation, fraud, (estafa) and physical injuries. Reasoning - Although in the case of Dyogi vs. Yatco this Court held that the term "physical injuries" used in Article 33 of the Civil Code includes homicide, it is to be borne in mind that the charge against Felardo Paje was for reckless imprudence resulting in homicide, and not for homicide and physical injuries. - In People vs. Buan, the Court ruled that the offense of criminal negligence under Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code lies in the execution of an imprudent or negligent act that, if intentionally done, would be punishable as a felony. The law penalizes thus the negligent or careless act, not the result thereof. - Homicide through reckless imprudence or criminal negligence comes under the general rule that the acquittal of the defendant in the criminal action is a bar to his civil liability based upon the same criminal act notwithstanding that the injured party reserved. - With regard to the issue of prescription, the Court ruled that the action had indeed prescribed because the prescription period was pegged at 4 years (A1146, CC) and began to run on the day the quasi-delict was committed. Disposition PREMISES CONSIDERED, the order appealed from is affirmed, without special pronouncement as to costs.

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- In any case the Code Commission recommended that the civil action for physical injuries be similar to the civil action for assault and battery in American Law, and this recommendation must hove been accepted by the Legislature when it approved the article intact as recommended. If the intent has been to establish a civil action for the bodily harm received by the complainant similar to the civil action for assault and battery, as the Code Commission states, the civil action should lie whether the offense committed is that of physical injuries, or frustrated homicide, or attempted homicide, or even death" **(end of obiter) - Corpus vs. Paje, which states that reckless imprudence or criminal negligence is not included in Article 33 of the Civil Code is not authoritative. Of eleven justices only nine took part in the decision and four of them merely concurred in the result. Disposition Petition is granted; the order dismissing Civil Case No. 141 is hereby set aside.

- The criminal case still pending, Carmen L. Madeja sued Dr. Eva A. Japzon for damages, alleging that her husband died because of the gross negligence of Dr. Japzon. - The defendant filed a motion to dismiss, which the respondent judge granted on the basis of Section 3(a) of Rule 111 of the Rules of Court16 ISSUE WON a civil action for damages may be instituted pending the resolution of a criminal case HELD YES - Section 2, Rule 111 of the Rules of Court in relation to Article 33 of the Civil Code is the applicable provision. A - Sec. 2. Independent civil action. In the cases provided for in Articles 31, 32, 33, 34 and 2177 of the Civil Code of 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." (Rule 111, Rules of Court.) - Art. 33. In cases of defamation, fraud, and physical injuries, a civil action for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action, may be brought by the injured party. Such civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution, and shall require only a preponderance of evidence. (Civil Code,) Obiter - There are at least two things about Art. 33 of the Civil Code which are worth noting, namely: 1. The civil action for damages which it allows to be instituted is ex-delicto. This is manifest from the provision which uses the expressions "criminal action" and "criminal prosecution." 2. The term "physical injuries" is used in a generic sense. It is not the crime of physical injuries defined in the Revised Penal Code. It includes not only physical injuries but consummated, frustrated and attempted homicide. - The Article in question uses the words 'defamation', 'fraud' and 'physical injuries.' Defamation and fraud are used in their ordinary sense because there are no specific provisions in the Revised Penal Code using these terms as means of offenses defined therein, so that these two terms defamation and fraud must have been used not to impart to them any technical meaning in the laws of the Philippines, but in their generic sense. With this in mind, it is evident that the terms 'physical injuries' could not have been used in its specific sense as a crime defined in the Revised Penal Code, for it is difficult to believe that the Code Commission would have used terms in the same article-some in their general and another in its technical sense. - In other words, the term 'physical injuries' should be understood to mean bodily injury, not the crime of physical injuries, because the terms used with the latter are general terms.

DULAY V CA (SAFEGUARD, SUPERGUARD) 243 SCRA 220 BIDIN; April 3, 1995


FACTS - Benigno Torzuela, , a security guard on duty at the "Big Bang sa Alabang," and Atty. Napoleon Dulay had an altercation. Torzuela shot and killed Atty. Dulay. - Maria Benita Dulay, widow of Dulay, filed an action for damages against Torzuela and Safeguard Investigation and Security Co., Inc., (SAFEGUARD) and/or Superguard Security Corp. (SUPERGUARD), alleged employers of defendant Torzuela. Respondent: > that Torzuela's act of shooting Dulay was beyond the scope of his duties, and that since the alleged act of shooting was committed w/ deliberate intent (dolo), the civil liability is governed by Art 100 of the RPC. > that a complaint for damages based on negligence under Art 2176 (the one filed by petitioners) cannot lie, since the civil liability under Art 2176 applies only to quasi-offenses under Art 365 of the RPC. > 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. > that Article 33 of the New Civil Code applies only to injuries intentionally committed (Marcia v CA) Petitioner > the incident resulting in the death of Dulay was due to the concurring negligence of the defendants. Torzuela's wanton and reckless discharge of the firearm issued to him by defendant SAFEGUARD and/or SUPERGUARD was the immediate and proximate cause of the injury, while the negligence of defendant SAFEGUARD and/or SUPERGUARD consists in its having failed to exercise the diligence of a good father of a family in the supervision and control of its employee to avoid the injury. > that their cause of action against the private respondents is based on their liability under Article 2180 > that quasi-delicts are not limited to acts of negligence but also cover acts that are intentional and voluntary, citing Andamo v. IAC. Thus, Torzuela's act of shooting Dulay constitutes a quasi-delict actionable under Art 2176

MADEJA V CARO 211 PHIL 469 ABAD SANTOS; December 21, 1983
NATURE Petition seeking to set aside the order of the CFI dismissing the civil case against Japzon FACTS - DR. EVA A. JAPZON was accused of homicide through reckless imprudence for the death of Cleto Madeja after an appendectomy. - In the information, the offended party Carmen L. Madeja reserved her right to file a separate civil action for damages

Sec. 3. Other civil actions arising from offenses. In all cases not included in the preceding section the following rules shall be observed: (a) Criminal and civil actions arising from the same offense may be instituted separately, but after the criminal action has been commenced the civil action can not be instituted until final judgment has been rendered in the criminal action. ...
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> that Torzuela's act of shooting Dulay is also actionable under Art 3317 and Section 3, Rule 111 of the Rules of Court18 ISSUE WON civil action can proceed independently of the criminal action HELD YES - Rule 111 of the Rules on Criminal Procedure provides: "Sec 1. Institution of criminal and civil actions. When a criminal action is instituted, the civil action for the recovery of civil liability is impliedly instituted with the criminal action, unless the offended party waives the civil action, reserves his right to institute it separately, or institutes the civil action prior to the criminal action. Such civil action includes recovery of indemnity under the Revised Penal Code, and damages under Articles 32, 33, 34, and 2176 of the Civil Code of the Philippines arising from the same act or omission of the accused." - It is well-settled that the filing of an independent civil action before the prosecution in the criminal action presents evidence is even far better than a compliance with the requirement of an express reservation. This is precisely what the petitioners opted to do in this case. - The term "physical injuries" in Article 33 has already been construed to include bodily injuries causing death (Capuno v. Pepsi-Cola Bottling Co; Carandang v. Santiago). It is not the crime of physical injuries defined in the Revised Penal Code. It includes not only physical injuries but also consummated, frustrated, and attempted homicide (Madeja v. Caro). - Although in the Marcia case, it was held that no independent civil action may be filed under Article 33 where the crime is the result of criminal negligence, it must be noted however, that Torzuela, the accused in the case at bar, is charged with homicide, not with reckless imprudence, whereas the defendant in Marcia was charged with reckless imprudence. Therefore, in this case, a civil action based on Article 33 lies.

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- Velayo instituted case against Shell for the purpose of securing writ of injunction restraining Shell from prosecuting against CALI, and as an alternative, that Shell be ordered to pay damages double the value of the plane if the case in the US will defeat the procurement of CALI of its plane. - Dec 22, 1948, Court denied petition because whether the conveyance of Shells credit was fraudulent or not, the Phil court would not be in a position to enforce its orders as against the American corporation Shell Oil Co., Inc., which is outside the jurisdiction of the Phils. - Plaintiff confined his action to the recovery of damages against Shell. Lower court dismissed the case. Defendants Comments > Assignment of credit in favor of American Shell was for valuable consideration and made in accordance with established commercial practices > It has no interest in the case instituted by American Shell, as they are separate and distinct corporations. > Fitzgerald was merely invited to the luncheon-meeting, without knowing the purpose for which it was called. Fitzgerald could not have officially represented Shell because authority resides on Crawford. ISSUES 1. WON Shell Co., of the P.I. Ltd, taking advantage of its knowledge of the existence of CALIs airplane C-54 at California, USA, acted in bad faith and betrayed the confidence and trust of other creditors of CALI present in said meeting by affecting a hasty telegraphic transfer of its credit to the American corporation Shell Oil Company, Inc., thus defeating the purpose of the informal meetings of CALIs principal creditors and depriving the plaintiff of the means of obtaining the plane, or its value, to the detriment and prejudice of other CALI creditors who were consequently deprived of their share in the distribution of said value 2. WON by reason of said betrayal of confidence and trust, Shell may be made to answer for the damages, and if so, the amount of such damages HELD 1. YES, Shell acted in bad faith. - It is evident that Shell, upon learning the precarious economic situation of CALI and that will all probability, it could not get much of its outstanding credit because of the preferred claims of other creditors, entirely disregarded all moral inhibitory tenets. - The telegraphic transfer made without knowledge and at the back of other creditors of CALI may be a shrewd and surprise move that enabled Shell to collect almost all if not the entire amount of its credit, but the Court of Justice (SC) cannot countenance such attitude at all, and much less from a foreign corporation to the detriment of Philippine Government and local business. - Shells transfer of credit would have been justified only if Fitzgerald had declined to take part in the working committee and frankly and honestly informed the other creditors present that he had no authority to bind his principal and that the latter was to be left free to collect its credit from CALI by whatever means his principal deemed wise and were available to it. But then, such information would have dissolved all attempts to come to an amicable conciliation and would have precipitated the filing of CALIs voluntary insolvency proceedings and nullified the intended transfer of Shells credit to American Shell. 2. YES, Shell must answer for damages. - Section 37 of the Insolvency Law states

INTENTIONAL TORTS
VELAYO V SHELL CO OF THE PHILS 100 PHIL 186 FELIX; October 31, 1956
NATURE Appeal from a judgment of CFI Manila FACTS - Since the start of Commercial Air Line, Incs (CALI) operations, its fuel needs were all supplied by Shell Company of the P.I., Ltd, (Shell). Desmond

Art. 33. In cases of defamation, fraud, and physical injuries, a civil action for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action, may be brought by the injured party. Such civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution, and shall require only a preponderance of evidence 18 Rule 111.Sec. 3. When civil action may proceed independently - In the cases provided for in Articles 32, 33, 34 and 2176 of the Civil Code of the Philippines, the independent civil-action which has been reserved may be brought by the offended party, shall proceed independently of the criminal action, and shall require only a preponderance of evidence.
17

Fitzgerald, Shells Credit Manager was in charge of collecting payment. Any extensions of term of payment, however, had to be decided by Stephen Crawford and later by Wildred Wooding - As of August 1948, Shells books showed a balance of P170,162.58 in its favor for goods it sold and delivered to CALI. Shell had reasons to believe that the financial condition of Shell was far from being satisfactory. Alfonso Sycip, CALIs President of Board of Directors, offered to Fitzgerald CALIs Douglas C-54 plane, which was then in California. The offer was declined by Crawford. - Aug 6, 1948, management of CALI informally convened its principal creditors in a luncheon, and informed them that CALI was in a state of insolvency and had to stop operation. Alexander Sycip, Secretary of the Board of Directors of CALI, explained the memorandum agreement executed by CALI with Phil Air Lines Inc on Aug 4, regarding the proposed sale to PAL of the aviation equipment of CALI. Alfredo Velayo, Auditor of CALI, discussed the balance sheets of CALI. The balance sheet made mention of the Douglas C-54 plane. - There was a general understanding among all creditors present on the desirability of consummating the sale in favor of PAL. Then followed a discussion on the payment of claims of creditors and the preferences claimed for the accounts due to employees, the Government, and the National Airports Corp. The other creditors disputed such contention of preference. No understanding was reached on the matter of preference of payment and it was then generally agreed that the matter be further studied by a working committee to be formed. Mr. Fitzgerald of Shell, Atty. Agcaoili of National Airports Corp., and Atty. Alexander Sycip were appointed to the working committee. - Those present in the meeting were of the unanimous opinion that it would be advantageous not to present suits against CALI but to strive for a fair prorata division of its assets. The management of CALI announced that in case of non-agreement of the creditors, it would file insolvency proceedings. - Aug 9, 1948, working committee discussed methods of achieving objectives, which were to preserve the assets of CALI and to study the way of making a fair division of all the assets among the creditors. However, negotiation on the division of assets was left pending. - On the same day (Aug 9), Shell effected a telegraphic transfer of all its credit against CALI to the American Corporation Shell Oil Co., Inc., assigning its credit amounting to $79,440. This was followed on Aug 10 by a deed of assignment of credit amounting to $85,081.29. - Aug 12, 1948 American Shell Oil Co filed a complaint against CALI in the Superior Court of the State of California, USA, for the collection of assigned credit of $79,440, and a writ of attachment was applied for and issued against a C-54 plane. Sept 17, 1948 an amended complaint was filed to recover assigned credit of $85,081.29 and a supplemental attachment for a higher sum against the C-54 plane, plus miscellaneous personal properties. - Unaware of Shells assignment of credit, CALI on Aug 12, 1948 approved the memorandum agreement of sale to PAL, and noted that the Board had been trying to reach an agreement with creditors to prevent insolvency proceedings, but so far no definite agreement had been reached. - First week of Sept 1948, National Airports Corp learned of Shells action in the US and hastened to file its own complaint with attachment against CALI in the CFI of Manila. - Oct 7, 1948 CALI filed a petition for voluntary insolvency. An order of insolvency was issued by the court on the same day. Mr. Alfredo Velayo was appointed Assignee in the proceedings.

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Sec 37. If any person, before the assignment is made, having notice of the commencement of the proceedings in insolvency, or having reason to believe that insolvency proceedings are about to be commenced, embezzles or disposes of ay money, goods, chattels, or effects of the insolvent, he is chargeable therewith, and liable to an action by the assignee for double the value of the property sought to be embezzled or disposed of, to be received for the benefit of the insolvent estate. - There are doubts, however, as to the applicability of this provision, as it is contented that what Shell really disposed of was its own credit and not CALIs property, although this was practically the effect and result of the scheme. The same result, however, may be achieved in applying the provisions of the Civil Code. Article 19 of the Civil Code provides Art 19. Any 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. - While Art 19 contains a mere declaration of principles, such declaration is implemented by Article 21 of the Civil Code, which 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. - Code Commission on Article 21: (it) would vouchsafe adequate legal remedy for that untold numbers of moral wrongs which is impossible for human foresight to provide for specifically in the statutes. (It) is a prudent earnest of justice in the face of the impossibility of enumerating, one by one, all wrongs which cause damage. - If Article 23 of Civil Code goes as far as to provide that Even if an act or event causing damage to anothers property was not due to the fault or negligence of the defendant, the latter shall be liable for indemnity if through the act or event he was benefited., with much more reason that Shell should be liable for indemnity for acts it committed in bad faith and with betrayal of confidence. - Anent the argument that Civil Code provisions cannot be applicable as they came into effect only on Aug 30, 1950, Art 2252 of Civil Code provides by implication that when new provisions of the Code does not prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights in accordance with the old legislation, they may be given retroactive effect. Shell did not have any vested or acquired right to betray confidence of CALI or of its creditors. Moreover, according to Art 2254 of Civil Code, no vested or acquired right can arise from acts or omissions which are against the law or which infringe upon the right of others. Disposition Shell is liable to pay plaintiff, for the benefit of CALI and its creditors, compensatory damages a sum equivalent to the value of the plane at the time Shell assigned its credit to American Shell, and another equal sum as exemplary damages.

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- A year and a half later, she was again asked to go to Jeddah to see Miniewy. When she did, a certain Khalid of Saudia brought her to a Saudi court where she was asked to sign a document written in Arabic. She was told that it was necessary to close the case against Thamer and Allah. As it turned out, she signed a document to appear before the court a week later. When the date of appearance came, she complied but only after being assured by Saudias Manila manager that the investigation was routinary and posed no danger to her. She was brought before the court and was interrogated by a Saudi judge and let go, however, just as she was about to board a plane home, she was told that she had been forbidden to take flight. She was later told to remain in Jeddah and her passport was again confiscated. A few days later, she was again brought before the same court where the Saudi judge, to her astonishment and shock, sentenced her to 5 months imprisonment and 286 lashes. Only then did she realize that the Saudi court had tried her, together with Thamer and Allah for what happened in Jakarta. The court found her guilty of adultery; going to a disco, dancing and listening to music in violation of Islamic laws; and socializing with the male crew, in contravention of Islamic tradition. - Facing conviction, she sought help from her employer, petitioner Saudia but she was denied assistance of any kind. She asked the Phil. Embassy to help her. Because she was wrongfully convicted, the Prince of Makkah dismissed the case against her and allowed her to leave Saudi Arabia. Shortly before her return to Manila, she was terminated from the service by Saudia without being informed of the cause. - She then filed a complaint for damages against Saudia and Mr. Al-Balawi, its country manager. Saudia filed a motion to dismiss raising the issues of lack of cause of action and lack of jurisdiction. The RTC denied the motion to dismiss by Saudia, as well as the subsequent MFR. Saudia then filed petition for certiorari and prohibition with prayer for issuance of writ of preliminary injunction and/or TRO with the CA. The CA issued a TRO prohibiting respondent judge from conducting any proceeding unless otherwise directed. The CA, however, in another resolution, denied Saudias prayer for issuance of writ of preliminary injunction. Saudia then filed to the SC this instant petition. However, during the pendency of this petition, respondent CA rendered a decision that the Philippines is an appropriate forum considering that the Amended Complaint's basis for recovery of damages is Art.21 CC, thus, clearly within the jurisdiction of respondent Court. ISSUES 1. WON Morada had a cause of action 2. Which law should govern (Phil. Law or Saudi Law) HELD 1. YES - She aptly predicated her cause of action on Art.19 and Art.21 of the CC. As held in PNB v CA, the aforecited provisions on human relations were intended to expand the concept of torts in this jurisdiction by granting adequate legal remedy for the untold no. of moral wrongs which is impossible for human foresight to specifically provide in the statutes. Although Art.19 merely declares a principle of law, Art.21 gives flesh to its provisions. Reasoning - After a careful study of the pleadings, We are convinced that there is reasonable basis for private respondents assertion that although she was already working in Manila, petitioner brought her to Jeddah on the pretense that she would merely testify in an investigation of the charges she made against the two crew members for the attack on her person. As it turned out,

- The transfer of credit to its sister corporation in the US did not prejudice the Government, because its claims were fully paid, not caused any loss or injury to other creditors, except the entities and groups controlled by Alfonso Sycip. It is not liable for exemplary damages because the provisions of the new Civil Code on the matter are not applicable to this case - Plaintiff-appellant has no cause of action against it and is not the real party in interest - Plaintiffs right of action was based and prosecuted in the lower court under the provisions of the Insolvency Law and consequently he is stopped from pursuing another theory and is not entitled to damages under the provisions of the new Civil Code. HELD - The facts on which Court based its conclusion that Shell acted in bad faith are not and cannot be denied or contradicted by defendant. - There is no sensible reason for disturbing the finding that Shell is liable for exemplary damages. The amount of the award, however, may be modified. - According to the Civil Code, exemplary or corrective damages are imposed by way of example or correction for the public good, in addition to the moral, temperate, liquidated or compensatory damages, and that the amount of the exemplary damages need not be proved, for it is left to the sound discretion of the Court. - Majority of the Court is of the opinion that the value of the C-54 plane might result too high, and that exemplary damages should not be left to speculation but properly determined by a certain and fixed amount. The amount of exemplary damages is thus modified, and fixed at P25,000.

SAUDI ARABIAN AIRLINES V CA (MORADA) 297 SCRA 469 QUISUMBING; October 8, 1998
NATURE Petition for certiorari to annul and set aside CA resolution and decision FACTS - Private respondent Milagros Morada was a flight attendant of Petitioner Company. During a stop-over in Jakarta, she went to a disco with 2 of her fellow crew members Thamer and Allah (both surnamed Al-Gazzawi) and had breakfast in their hotel room. While there, Allah left and Thamer attempted to rape her. She was saved by hotel security personnel who heard her cries for help. She later filed a case against them. The two were arrested and detained by Jakarta police. When Morada returned to Jeddah (the base of operations of petitioner), she was asked to go to Jakarta to arrange for the release of the two men. She proceeded to Jakarta but she refused to cooperate. She was eventually allowed to return to Jeddah but barred from Jakarta flights. The Indonesian authorities eventually deported the 2 men, through the intercession of the Saudi govt., after 2 weeks of detention. They were put back in service while respondent Morada was transferred to Manila. - 2 years later, she was asked by her superiors to see Mr. Miniewy, the Chief Legal Officer of Saudia, in Jeddah. When they met, he brought her to the police station where her passport was taken and she was questioned about the Jakarta incident. Miniewy merely stood as the police put pressure on her to drop the case against the two men. Not until she agreed to do so did the police return her passport and allowed her to catch a later flight out of Jeddah.

VELAYO V SHELL CO OF THE PHILS RESOLUTION 100 PHIL 207 FELIX; July 30, 1957
Defendant-appellees contentions - It is not guilty of bad faith, it having done nothing but to protect legitimately its own interest or credit against the bad faith of its debtor, the insolvent CALI, under the control of the latters president Alfonso Sycip

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she was the one made to face trial for very serious charges, including adultery and violation of Islamic laws and tradition. - There is likewise logical basis on record for the claim that in handing over or turning over the person of private respondent to Jeddah officials, petitioner may have acted beyond its duties as employer. Petitioners purported act contributed to and amplified or even proximately caused additional humiliation, misery and suffering of private respondent. Petitioner thereby allegedly facilitated the arrest, detention and prosecution of private respondent under the guise of petitioners authority as employer, taking advantage of the trust, confidence and faith she reposed upon it. As purportedly found by the Prince of Makkah, the alleged conviction and imprisonment of Morada was wrongful. But these capped the injury or harm allegedly inflicted upon her person and reputation, for which petitioner could be liable as claimed, to provide compensation or redress for the wrongs done, once duly proven. 2. Philippine Law Ratio Choice of law rules invariably consist of a factual relationship (such as property right, contract claim) and a connecting factor or point of contact, such as the situs of the res, the place of celebration, the place of performance, or the place of wrongdoing. Reasoning - Considering that the complaint in the court a quo is one involving torts, the connecting factor or point of contact could be the place or places where the tortious conduct or lex loci actus occurred. And applying the torts principle in a conflicts case, we find that the Philippines could be said as a situs of the tort (the place where the alleged tortious conduct took place). This is because it is in the Philippines where petitioner allegedly deceived private respondent, a Filipina residing and working here. According to her, she had honestly believed that petitioner would, in the exercise of its rights and in the performance of its duties, act with justice, give her due and observe honesty and good faith. Instead, petitioner failed to protect her, she claimed. That certain acts or parts of the injury allegedly occurred in another country is of no moment. For in our view, what is important here is the place where the over-all harm or the totality of the alleged injury to the person, reputation, social standing and human rights of complainant, had lodged according to the private respondent. All told, it is not without basis to identify the Phil. as the situs of the alleged tort. - In keeping abreast with the modern theories on tort liability, We find here an occasion to apply the State of the most significant relationship rule, which should be appropriate to apply now, given the factual context of the case. In applying said principle to determine the State which has the most significant relationship, the following contacts are to be taken into account and evaluated according to their relative importance with respect to the particular issue: (A) the place where the injury occurred; (B) the place where the conduct causing the injury occurred; (C) the domicile, residence, nationality, place of incorporation and place of business of the parties, and; (D) the place where the relationship, if any, between the parties is centered. - As already discussed, there is basis for the claim that the over-all injury occurred and lodged in the Phils. There is likewise no question that private respondent is a resident Filipina national, working with petitioner, a resident foreign corporation engaged in international air carriage business here. Thus, the relationship between the parties was centered here. Disposition petition for certiorari is DISMISSED. Civil case entitled Milagros Morada v Saudi Arabia Airlines REMANDED to RTC

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wrote a letter to the latter stating that Tobias was dismissed by GLOBE MACKAY due to dishonesty. - Tobias filed a civil case for damages anchored on alleged unlawful, malicious, oppressive, and abusive acts of petitioners. - Petitioner Hendry, claiming illness, did not testify during the hearings. - The RTC rendered judgment in favor of Tobias by ordering petitioners to pay him P80,000.00 as actual damages, P200,000.00 as moral damages, P20,000.00 as exemplary damages, P30,000.00 as attorney's fees, and costs. - CA affirmed the RTC decision in toto. ISSUE WON petitioners are liable for damages to private respondent HELD YES Ratio Art.19, known to contain what is commonly referred to as the principle of abuse of rights, sets certain standards which must be observed not only in the exercise of one's rights but also in the performance of one's duties. These standards are the following: to act with justice; to give everyone his due; and to observe honesty and good faith. The law, therefore, recognizes a primordial limitation on all rights; that in their exercise, the norms of human conduct set forth in Article 19 must be observed. A right, though by itself legal because recognized or granted by law as such, may nevertheless become the source of some illegality. When a right is exercised in a manner which does not conform with the norms enshrined in Article 19 and results in damage to another, a legal wrong is thereby committed for which the wrongdoer must be held responsible. Reasoning - One of the more notable innovations of the New Civil Code is the codification of "some basic principles that are to be observed for the rightful relationship between human beings and for the stability of the social order." Foremost among these principles is that pronounced in Article 19 which provides: Art. 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. - But while Art.19 lays down a rule of conduct for the government of human relations and for the maintenance of social order, it does not provide a remedy for its violation. Generally, an action for damages under either Article 20 or Article 21 would be proper. - Article 20, which pertains to damage arising from a violation of law, provides that: Art. 20. Every person who contrary to law, wilfully or negligently causes damage to another, shall indemnify the latter for the same. - However, in the case at bar, petitioners claim that they did not violate any provision of law since they were merely exercising their legal right to dismiss private respondent. This does not, however, leave private respondent with no relief because Article 21 of the Civil Code provides that: 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. - In determining whether or not the principle of abuse of rights may be invoked, there is no rigid test which can be applied. The question of whether or not the principle of abuse of rights has been violated resulting in damages

GLOBE MACKAY V CA 176 SCRA 778 CORTES; August 25, 1989


NATURE An appeal from the decision of CA FACTS - Private respondent Restituto M. Tobias was employed by petitioner Globe Mackay Cable and Radio Corporation as a purchasing agent and administrative assistant to the engineering operations manager. - GLOBE MACKAY discovered fictitious purchases and other fraudulent transactions for which it lost several thousands of pesos. According to private respondent it was he who actually discovered the anomalies and reported them to his immediate superior Eduardo T. Ferraren and to petitioner Herbert C. Hendry who was then the Executive VP and General Manager of GLOBE MACKAY. - one day after Tobias made the report, Hendry confronted him by stating that he was the number one suspect, and ordered him to take a one week forced leave, not to communicate with the office, to leave his table drawers open, and to leave the office keys. - when Tobias returned to work after the forced leave, Hendry went up to him and called him a "crook" and a "swindler." Tobias was then ordered to take a lie detector test. He was also instructed to submit specimen of his handwriting, signature, and initials for examination by the police investigators to determine his complicity in the anomalies. - the Manila police investigators cleared Tobias of participation in the anomalies. - Not satisfied with the police report, petitioners hired a private investigator who submitted a report finding Tobias guilty. This report however expressly stated that further investigation was still to be conducted. - Nevertheless, Hendry issued a memo suspending Tobias from work preparatory to the filing of criminal charges against him. - the Police Chief Document Examiner, after investigating other documents pertaining to the alleged anomalous transactions, submitted a second laboratory crime report reiterating his previous finding that the handwritings, signatures, and initials appearing in the checks and other documents involved in the fraudulent transactions were not those of Tobias. The lie detector tests conducted on Tobias also yielded negative results. - Notwithstanding the two police reports exculpating Tobias from the anomalies petitioners filed a complaint for estafa through falsification of commercial documents, later amended to just estafa. - Subsequently five other criminal complaints were filed against Tobias, four of which were for estafa while the fifth was for of Art.290 of' RPC (Discovering Secrets Through Seizure of Correspondence). - All of the 6 criminal complaints were dismissed by the fiscal. - In the meantime, Tobias received a notice from petitioners that his employment has been terminated. Whereupon, Tobias filed a complaint for illegal dismissal. - Secretary of Labor, acting on petitioners' appeal from the NLRC ruling, reinstated the labor arbiter's decision and dismissed the complaint. Tobias appealed the Secretary of Labor's order with the Office of the President. - Unemployed, Tobias sought employment with the Republic Telephone Company. However, petitioner Hendry, without being asked by RETELCO,

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under Article 20 or Article 21 or other applicable provision of law, depends on the circumstances of each case. - the Court, after examining the record and considering certain significant circumstances, finds that all petitioners have indeed abused the right that they invoke, causing damage to private respondent and for which the latter must now be indemnified. - An employer who harbors suspicions that an employee has committed dishonesty might be justified in taking the appropriate action such as ordering an investigation and directing the employee to go on a leave. Firmness and the resolve to uncover the truth would also be expected from such employer. But the high-handed treatment accorded Tobias by petitioners was certainly uncalled for. - The imputation of guilt without basis and the pattern of harassment during the investigations of Tobias transgress the standards of human conduct set forth in Article 19 of the Civil Code. The Court has already ruled that the right of the employer to dismiss an employee should not be confused with the manner in which the right is exercised and the effects flowing therefrom. If the dismissal is done abusively, then the employer is liable for damages to the employee. - Several other tortious acts were committed by petitioners against Tobias after the latter's termination from work: Hendry cut short Tobias' protestations by telling him to just confess or else the company would file a hundred more cases against him until he landed in jail. Hendry added that, "You Filipinos cannot be trusted." - The threat unmasked petitioner's bad faith in the various actions taken against Tobias. On the other hand, the scornful remark about Filipinos as well as Hendry's earlier statements about Tobias being a "crook" and "swindler" are clear violations of 'Tobias' personal dignity - The next tortious act committed by petitioners was the writing of a letter to RETELCO sometime in October 1974, stating that Tobias had been dismissed by GLOBE MACKAY due to dishonesty. Tobias remained unemployed for a longer period of time. For this further damage suffered by Tobias, petitioners must likewise be held liable for damages consistent with Article 2176 of the Civil Code. - Finally, there is the matter of the filing by petitioners of six criminal complaints against Tobias. While sound principles of justice and public policy dictate that persons shall have free resort to the courts for redress of wrongs and vindication of their rights, the right to institute criminal prosecutions can not be exercised maliciously and in bad faith. Considering the haste in which the criminal complaints were filed, the fact that they were filed during the pendency of the illegal dismissal case against petitioners, the threat made by Hendry, the fact that the cases were filed notwithstanding the two police reports exculpating Tobias from involvement in the anomalies committed against GLOBE MACKAY, coupled by the eventual dismissal of all the cases, the Court is led into no other conclusion than that petitioners were motivated by malicious intent in filing the six criminal complaints against Tobias. - It must be underscored that petitioners have been guilty of committing several actionable tortious acts. Considering the extent of the damage wrought on Tobias, the Court finds that, contrary to petitioners' contention, the amount of damages awarded to Tobias was reasonable under the circumstances. - Petitioners still insist that the award of damages was improper, invoking the principle of damnum absque injuria. It is argued that "[t]he only probable actual damage that private respondent could have suffered was a direct result of his having been dismissed from his employment, which was a valid and legal act of the defendants-appellants. According to the principle of

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finding of Fiscal Sumaway and exonerated respondent Baltao. He found that the signature on the check is not the signature of Eugenio S. Baltao. - Because of the alleged unjust filing of a criminal case against him, respondent Baltao filed before the RTC a complaint for damages against herein petitioners Albenson Enterprises, Jesse Yap, its owner, and Benjamin Mendiona, its employee. In its decision, the lower court observed that "the check is drawn against the account of "E.L. Woodworks," not of Guaranteed Industries of which plaintiff used to be President. Guaranteed Industries had been inactive and had ceased to exist as a corporation since 1975. . . The possibility is that it was with Gene Baltao or Eugenio Baltao III, a son of plaintiff, that the defendants may have been dealing with . . ." ISSUE WON private respondent's cause of action is not one based on malicious prosecution but one for abuse of rights under Article 21 of the CC HELD NO Ratio The question of whether or not the principle of abuse of rights has been violated, resulting in damages under Articles 20 and 21 or other applicable provision of law, depends on the circumstances of each case. The elements of an abuse of right under Article 19 are the following: (1) There is a legal right or duty; (2) which is exercised in bad faith; (3) for the sole intent of prejudicing or injuring another. Article 20 speaks of the general sanction for all other provisions of law which do not especially provide for their own sanction. Thus, anyone who, whether willfully or negligently, in the exercise of his legal right or duty, causes damage to another, shall indemnify his victim for injuries suffered thereby. Article 21 deals with acts contra bonus mores, and has the following elements: 1) There is an act which is legal; 2) but which is contrary to morals, good custom, public order, or public policy; 3) and it is done with intent to injure. There is a common element under Articles 19 and 21, and that is, the act must be intentional. Reasoning - Petitioners could not be said to have violated the principle of abuse of right. What prompted petitioners to file the case for violation of BP 22 against private respondent was their failure to collect the amountdue on a bounced check which they honestly believed was issued to them by private respondent. Private respondent, however, did nothing to clarify the case of mistaken identity at first hand. In the absence of a wrongful act or omission or of fraud or bad faith, moral damages cannot be awarded and that the adverse result of an action does not per se make the action wrongful and subject the actor to the payment of damages, for the law could not have meant to impose a penalty on the right to litigate. Considering that Guaranteed, which received the goods in payment of which the bouncing check was issued is owned by respondent, petitioner acted in good faith and probable cause in filing the complaint before the provincial fiscal. The presence of probable cause signifies, as a legal consequence, the absence of malice. Disposition petition is GRANTED and the decision of the CA is hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE.

damnum absque injuria, damage or loss which does not constitute a violation of a legal right or amount to a legal wrong is not actionable. This principle finds no application in this case. It bears repeating that even granting that petitioners might have had the right to dismiss Tobias from work, the abusive manner in which that right was exercised amounted to a legal wrong for which petitioners must now be held liable. Moreover, the damage incurred by Tobias was not only in connection with the abusive manner in which he was dismissed but was also the result of several other quasi-delictual acts committed by petitioners. - Petitioners next question the award of moral damages. However, the Court has already ruled that moral damages are recoverable in the cases mentioned in Article 21 of said Code. - Lastly, the award of exemplary damages is impugned by petitioners. The nature of the wrongful acts shown to have been committed by petitioners against Tobias is sufficient basis for the award of exemplary damages to the latter. Disposition petition is hereby DENIED and the decision of the CA is AFFIRMED.

ALBENSON V CA BIDIN; January 11, 1993


NATURE Petition assailing the decision of respondent CA which modified the judgment of the RTC and ordered petitioner to pay private respondent moral damages and attorney's fees. FACTS - Petitioner Albenson Enterprises Corporation delivered to Guaranteed Industries, Inc. the mild steel plates which the latter ordered. As part payment thereof, Albenson was given a check in the amount of P2,575.00 and drawn against the account of E.L. Woodworks. When presented for payment, the check was dishonored for the reason "Account Closed." - From the records of the SEC, Albenson discovered that the president of Guaranteed, the recipient of the unpaid mild steel plates, was one "Eugenio S. Baltao." Upon further inquiry, Albenson was informed by the Ministry of Trade and Industry that E.L. Woodworks, a single proprietorship business, was registered in the name of one "Eugenio Baltao". In addition, upon verification with the drawee bank, Albenson was advised that the signature appearing on the subject check belonged to one "Eugenio Baltao." After obtaining the foregoing information, Albenson made an extrajudicial demand upon private respondent Eugenio S. Baltao to replace and/or make good the dishonored check. However, private respondent has a namesake, his son Eugenio Baltao III, who manages a business establishment, E.L. Woodworks, with the very same business address as Guaranteed. - Assistant Fiscal Ricardo Sumaway filed an information against Eugenio S. Baltao for Violation of BP 22. In filing said information, Fiscal Sumaway claimed that he had given Eugenio S. Baltao opportunity to submit controverting evidence, but the latter failed to do so and therefore, was deemed to have waived his right. Baltao, claiming ignorance of the complaint against him, immediately filed with the Provincial Fiscal of Rizal a motion for reinvestigation. Provincial Fiscal Mauro M. Castro of Rizal reversed the

AMONOY V GUTIERREZ 351 SCRA 731 PANGANIBAN; 2001


FACTS

torts & damages


- Amonoy was the counsel of therein Francisca Catolos, Agnes Catolos, Asuncion Pasamba and Alfonso Formilda. He won the case for them and charged P27600 as attorneys fees. As they were not able to pay, his clients executed real estate mortgages on their lands and the house thereon. Asuncion Pasamba died on 24 February 1969 while Alfonso Fornilda passed away on 2 July 1969. Among the heirs of the latter was his daughter, plaintiff-appellant Angela Gutierrez. - Because his attorneys fees thus secured by the two lots were not paid, on 21 January 1970 Amonoy filed for their foreclosure before the CFI of Pasig, Rizal. The heirs opposed, contending that the attorneys fees charged were unconscionable and that the agreed sum was only P11,695.92. But on 28 September 1972 judgment was rendered in favor of Amonoy requiring the heirs to pay within 90 days the P27,600.00 secured by the mortgage, P11,880.00 as value of the harvests, and P9,645.00 as another round of attorneys fees. Failing in that, the two (2) lots would be sold at public auction. - They failed to pay. On 6 February 1973, the said lots were foreclosed. Amonoy was the highest bidder in the foreclosure sale. The heirs sought the annulment of the auction sale. The case was dismissed by the CFI on 7 November 1977, and this was affirmed by the Court of Appeals on 22 July 1981. Thereafter, the CFI on 25 July 1985 issued a Writ of Possession and pursuant to which a notice to vacate was made on 26 August 1985. On Amonoys motion of 24 April 1986, the Orders of 25 April 1986 and 6 May 1986 were issued for the demolition of structures in the said lots, including the house of the Gutierrez spouses. - The Gutierrez spouses sought a restraining order from the Supreme Court, which was granted by the same. Upon a judgment on merits later on, Amonoy was ordered to return said properties to the rightful owners. But by the time the Supreme Court promulgated the above-mentioned Decision, respondents house had already been destroyed, supposedly in accordance with a Writ of Demolition ordered by the lower court. - Thus, a Complaint for damages in connection with the destruction of their house was filed by respondents against petitioner before the RTC on December 15, 1989. In its January 27, 1993 Decision, the RTC dismissed respondents suit. On appeal, the CA set aside the lower courts ruling and ordered petitioner to pay respondents P250,000 as actual damages. Petitioner then filed a Motion for Reconsideration, which was also denied. Hence, this recourse. ISSUE WON Amonoy may properly invoke damnum absque injuria in this case since at the time of the demolition he had color of authority over said properties HELD NO Ratio Damnum absque injuria may not be invoked by a person who claims to exercise a right but does so in an abusive manner violative of Article 19 of the Civil Code. Indeed, in the availment of ones rights, one must Reasoning - Petitioner invokes this legal precept in arguing that he is not liable for the demolition of respondents house. He maintains that he was merely acting in accordance with the Writ of Demolition ordered by the RTC. - We reject this submission. Damnum absque injuria finds no application to this case.True, petitioner commenced the demolition of respondents house on May 30, 1986 under the authority of a Writ of Demolition issued by the RTC. But the records show that a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO),

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the bar examination. He took a leave of absence without pay from his job and enrolled at the pre-bar review class. Jader later learned of the deficiency and he dropped his review class and was not able to take the bar examination. Consequently, he sued UE for damages. - UE denied liability arguing that it never led respondent to believe that he completed the requirements for a Bachelor of Laws degree when his name was included in the tentative list of graduating students. - TC rendered judgment in favor of the Jader and ordered UE to pay Jader P35,470.00 - CA Affirmed and added an award of P50,000.00 for moral damages - UE elevated the case to this Court on a petition for review arguing that it has no liability to respondent Romeo A. Jader, considering that the proximate and immediate cause of the alleged damages incurred by the latter arose out of his own negligence in not verifying from the professor concerned the result of his removal exam. ISSUE WON an educational institution may be held liable for damages for misleading a student into believing that the latter had satisfied all the requirements for graduation when such is not the case HELD YES - UE had a contractual obligation to inform his students as to whether or not they have met all the requirements for the conferment of a degree. Thus, UE in belatedly informing respondent of the result of the removal examination, particularly at a time when he had already commenced preparing for the bar exams, cannot be said to have acted in good faith. Absence of good faith must be sufficiently established for a successful prosecution by the aggrieved party in a suit for abuse of right under Article 19 of the Civil Code. Good faith connotes an honest intention to abstain from taking undue advantage of another, even though the forms and technicalities of the law, together with the absence of all information or belief of facts, would render the transaction unconscientious. - Considering that the institution of learning involved herein is a university which is engaged in legal education, it should have practiced what it inculcates in its students, more specifically the principle of good dealings enshrined in Articles 19 and 20 of the Civil Code which states: Art. 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. Art. 20. Every person who, contrary to law, wilfully or negligently causes damage to another, shall indemnify the latter for the same. - Article 19 was intended to expand the concept of torts by granting adequate legal remedy for the untold number of moral wrongs which is impossible for human foresight to provide specifically in statutory law. - In civilized society, men must be able to assume that others will do them no intended injury that others will commit no internal aggressions upon them; that their fellowmen, when they act affirmatively will do so with due care which the ordinary understanding and moral sense of the community exacts and that those with whom they deal in the general course of society will act in good faith. The ultimate thing in the theory of liability is justifiable reliance under conditions of civilized society. Schools and professors cannot just take students for granted and be indifferent to them, for without the latter, the former are useless.

enjoining the demolition of respondents house, was issued by the Supreme Court on June 2, 1986. The CA also found, based on the Certificate of Service of the Supreme Court process server, that a copy of the TRO was served on petitioner himself on June 4, 1986. - Petitioner, however, did not heed the TRO of this Court. We agree with the CA that he unlawfully pursued the demolition of respondents house well until the middle of 1987. Although the acts of petitioner may have been legally justified at the outset, their continuation after the issuance of the TRO amounted to an insidious abuse of his right. Indubitably, his actions were tainted with bad faith. Had he not insisted on completing the demolition, respondents would not have suffered the loss that engendered the suit before the RTC. Verily, his acts constituted not only an abuse of a right, but an invalid exercise of a right that had been suspended when he received the TRO from this Court on June 4, 1986. By then, he was no longer entitled to proceed with the demolition. - A commentator on this topic explains: The exercise of a right ends when the right disappears, and it disappears when it is abused, especially to the prejudice of others. The mask of a right without the spirit of justice which gives it life, is repugnant to the modern concept of social law. It cannot be said that a person exercises a right when he unnecessarily prejudices another x x x. Over and above the specific precepts of positive law are the supreme norms of justice x x x; and he who violates them violates the law. For this reason, it is not permissible to abuse our rights to prejudice others. - Article 19, known to contain what is commonly referred to as the principle of abuse of rights, sets certain standards which may be observed not only in the exercise of ones rights but also in the performance of ones duties. These standards are the following: to act with justice; to give everyone his due; and to observe honesty and good faith. The law, therefore, recognizes the primordial limitation on all rights: that in their exercise, the norms of human conduct set forth in Article 19 must be observed. A right, though by itself legal because recognized or granted by law as such, may nevertheless become the source of some illegality. When a right is exercised in a manner which does not conform with norms enshrined in Article 19 and results in damage to another, a legal wrong is thereby committed for which the wrongdoer must be held responsible

UE V JADER 325 SCRA 804 YNARES-SANTIAGO; February 17, 2000


FACTS - Jader was enrolled in the UE College of Law from 1984 up to 1988. He failed to take the regular final examination in Practice Court I for which he was given an incomplete grade .He enrolled for the second semester as fourth year law student .He filed an application for the removal of the incomplete grade but got a grade of five (5). - In the mean time, his name appeared in the Tentative List of Candidates for graduation with an annotation regarding his deficiencies. His name also appeared in the invitation for the graduation as one of the candidates for graduation. At the foot of the list of the names of the candidates there appeared however an annotation saying that it was a tentative list and that degrees will be conferred upon these candidates who satisfactorily complete requirements as stated in the University Bulletin . Jader attended the graduation and brought his family with him. He thereafter prepared himself for

torts & damages


- Educational institutions are duty-bound to inform the students of their academic status and not wait for the latter to inquire from the former. The conscious indifference of a person to the rights or welfare of the person/persons who may be affected by his act or omission can support a claim for damages. Want of care to the conscious disregard of civil obligations coupled with a conscious knowledge of the cause naturally calculated to produce them would make the erring party liable. Petitioner ought to have known that time was of the essence in the performance of its obligation to inform respondent of his grade. It cannot feign ignorance that respondent will not prepare himself for the bar exams since that is precisely the immediate concern after graduation of an LL.B. graduate. It failed to act seasonably. Petitioner cannot just give out its students grades at any time because a student has to comply with certain deadlines set by the Supreme Court on the submission of requirements for taking the bar. Petitioners liability arose from its failure to promptly inform respondent of the result of an examination and in misleading the latter into believing that he had satisfied all requirements for the course. - Petitioner cannot pass on its blame to the professors to justify its own negligence that led to the delayed relay of information to respondent. When one of two innocent parties must suffer, he through whose agency the loss occurred must bear it. The modern tendency is to grant indemnity for damages in cases where there is abuse of right, even when the act is not illicit. If mere fault or negligence in ones acts can make him liable for damages for injury caused thereby, with more reason should abuse or bad faith make him liable. A person should be protected only when he acts in the legitimate exercise of his right, that is, when he acts with prudence and in good faith, but not when he acts with negligence or abuse.

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was stipulated that an interest of 12% would be imposed, plus 25% for attys fees and collection. On Sept1987, Barons paid P300k (thereby leaving an unpaid account of P3.8m). Phelps sent several demands, but Barons still did not pay. It instead wrote Phelps requesting if it could pay the outstanding account in monthly installments of P500k plus 1% interest. - Phelps, instead of responding to the request of Barons, filed a complaint for recovery of the P3.8m plus interest, and prayed for attys fees of 25% of the amt, and exemplary damages amounting to P100k. - Barons admitted the purchase of the wires and cables, but disputed the amt claimed by Phelps. The RTC rendered decision in favor of Phelps, ordering Barons to pay the debt and interest of 12% and awarding 25% as attys fees. CA affirmed (with modification, reducing attys fees to 5%) Barons now assail the CA decision, alleging that Phelps should have been held guilty of creditors abuse of rights, and Barons should not be liable for attys fees. *note: Barons contends that Phelps abused its rights when it rejected Barons offer to settle the debt in installments **right involved: right of a creditor to refuse partial fulfillment of a prestation due to him ISSUES 1. WON there was creditors abuse of rights in this case 2. WON Barons should be liable for interest and attys fees HELD 1. NO Ratio there is no abuse of rights when there is no bad faith nor intent to prejudice another. Also, the mere exercise of a right cannot be said to be an abuse of right. Reasoning - the law prescribes a "primordial limitation on all rights" by setting certain standards that must be observed in the exercise thereof. Thus, the inclusion of Art.19 in the CC: 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. - To constitute abuse of rights, there must be bad faith or intent to prejudice the plaintiff. Citing Tolentino: There is undoubtedly an abuse of right when it is exercised for the only purpose of prejudicing or injuring another. When the objective of the actor is illegitimate, the illicit act cannot be concealed under the guise of exercising a right. xxx The exercise of a right must be in accordance with the purpose for which it was established, and must not be excessive or unduly harsh; there must be no intention to injure another. - In this case, bad faith on the part of Phelps was not proved. More importantly, Phelps was driven by legitimate reasons for rejecting Barons offer. It merely wanted to avoid a situation wherein its cash position would be compromised, making it harder for them to pay its own obligations. Clearly, this (the request of Barons) would be inimical to the interests of any enterprise, especially a profit-oriented one like Phelps. It is plain to see that what we have here is a mere exercise of rights, not an abuse thereof. 2. YES Ratio the penal clause included in the contract should be complied with in the event of breach. Reasoning - the contract expressly provided for the imposition of the 12% interest plus 25% for attorneys fees and collection, by way of penal clause. Thus, Barons is bound to pay the said amounts.

school about the matter and, on July 7, 1982, the members of the Board of Directors of the school, with the exception of Fr. Joseph Wiertz, signed a letter notifying her that she was "reinstated to report and do your usual duties as Classroom Teacher . . . effective July 5, 1982," and that "any letter or notice of termination received by you before this date has no sanction or authority by the Board of Directors of this Institution, therefore it is declared null and void." - On July 9, 1982, the president, vice president, secretary, and three members of the Board of Directors, out of a membership of nine (9), resigned their positions from the Board "for the reason that the ICI Faculty, has reacted acidly to the Board's deliberations for the reinstatement of Mrs. Esteria F. Garciano, thereby questioning the integrity of the Board's decision". - On September 3, 1982, petitioner filed a complaint for damages in the Regional Trial Court, Cebu, Branch XI, against Fr. Wiertz, Emerito Labajo, and some members of the faculty of the school for discrimination and unjust and illegal dismissal. ISSUE WON the defendants prevented the petitioner from reporting to the school and thus making them liable for damages HELD NO - The Court of Appeals was correct in finding that petitioner's discontinuance from teaching was her own choice. While the respondents admittedly wanted her service terminated, they actually did nothing to physically prevent her from reassuming her post, as ordered by the school's Board of Directors. That the school principal and Fr. Wiertz disagreed with the Board's decision to retain her, and some teachers allegedly threatened to resign en masse, even if true, did not make them liable to her for damages. They were simply exercising their right of free speech or their right to dissent from the Board's decision. Their acts were not contrary to law, morals, good customs or public policy. They did not "illegally dismiss" her for the Board's decision to retain her prevailed. She was ordered to report for work on July 5, 1982, but she did not comply with that order. Consequently, whatever loss she may have incurred in the form of lost earnings was self-inflicted. Volenti non fit injuria. Ratio Liability for damages under Articles 19, 20 and 21 of the Civil Code arises only from unlawful, willful or negligent acts that are contrary to law, or morals, good customs or public policy.

GARCIANO V CA 212 SCRA 436 GRIO-AQUINO; August 10, 1992


NATURE Petition for review of the decision of the Court of Appeals dismissing the complaint for damages filed by the petitioner against the private respondents. FACTS - The petitioner was hired to teach during the 1981-82 school year in the Immaculate Concepcion Institute in the Island of Camotes. On January 13, 1982, or before the school year ended, she applied for an indefinite leave of absence because her daughter was taking her to Austria where her daughter was employed. The application was recommended for approval by the school principal, Emerito O. Labajo, and approved by the President of the school's Board of Directors. - On June 1, 1982, Emerito Labajo addressed a letter to the petitioner through her husband, Sotero Garciano (for she was still abroad), informing her of the decision of Fr. Joseph Wiertz, the school's founder, concurred in by the president of the Parent-Teachers Association and the school faculty, to terminate her services as a member of the teaching staff because of: (1) the absence of any written contract of employment between her and the school due to her refusal to sign one; and (2) the difficulty of getting a substitute for her on a temporary basis as no one would accept the position without a written contract. Upon her return from Austria in the later part of June, 1982, she received the letter informing her that her services at the Immaculate Concepcion Institute had been terminated. She made inquiries from the

BARONS MARKETING V CA (PHELPS DODGE PHILS) 286 SCRA 96 KAPUNAN; February 9, 1998
NATURE Petition for review decision of CA FACTS - Phelps Dodge appointed Barons Marketing as one of its dealers of electrical wires and cables. As such dealer, Barons was given 60 days credit for its purchases of Phelps products. - From Dec1986 to Aug1987, Barons purchased on credit wires and cables worth P4.1m, which it in turn supplied to MERALCO. In the sales invoice, it

torts & damages


- However, since 25% if P4.1m is almost P2m, this should be reduced to 10% for being manifestly exorbitant. Thus, attys fees should be reduced to 10% Disposition CA decision modified WRT attys fees but AFFIRMED in other respects

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- Good faith is presumed and the burden of proving bad faith is on the party alleging it. As early as 28 October 1989, BPI could have suspended MARASIGANS card outright. Instead, BPI allowed him to use his card for several weeks. Ratio The underlying basis for the award of tort damages is the premise that an individual was injured in contemplation