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Abuse of right The trial court dismissed the complaint and ruled that when
Article 19. Every person must, in the exercise of his rights and in the sought investigation for the loss of her jewelry, she was merely
performance of his duties, act with justice, give everyone his due, and exercising her right and if damage results from a person
observe honesty and good faith.
exercising his legal right, it is damnum absque injuria. It added
that no proof was presented by Valmonte to show that
petitioner acted maliciously and in bad faith in pointing to her as
the culprit.
FACTS: Respondent Leonora Valmonte is a wedding
coordinator. Michelle del Rosario and Jon Sierra engaged her
The CA ruled out differently and opined that Valmonte has
services for their church weddinng on October 10, 1996. At
clearly established that she was singled out by the petitioner as
about 4:30 pm on that day, Valmonte went to the Manila Hotel
the one responsible for the loss of her jewelry. However, the
and when she arrived at Suite 326-A, several persons were
court find no sufficient evidence to justify the award of actual
already there including Soledad Carpio, the aunt of the bride.
After reporting to the bride, Valmonte went out of the suite to
Hence, this petition.
go to the reception hall to give the meal allowance to the band
and to pay the suppliers. Upon entering the suite, Valmonte
ISSUE: Whether the respondent is entitled to the award of
noticed the people staring at her and it was at this juncture that
actual and moral damages
Soledad Carpio allegedly uttered the following words to
Valmonte: Ikaw lang ang lumabas ng kwarto, nasaan ang dala
HELD: The Court ruled that the respondent in entitled to moral
mong bag? Saan ka pumunta? Ikaw lang ang lumabas ng
damages but not to actual damages.
kwarto, ikaw ang kumuha It turned out that after Valmonte left
the room to attend to her duties, petitioner discovered that the
In the sphere of our law on human relations, one of the
pieces of jewelry which she placed inside the comfort room in a
fundamental precepts is the principle known as abuse of rights
paper bag were lost and these include diamond rings, earrings,
under Article 19 of the Civil Code. To find existence of an abuse
bracelet and diamong necklace with a total value of about 1M
of right, the following elements must be present: 1) there is
pesos. Valmonte was allegedly bodily searched, interrogated
legal right or duty; 2) which is exercised in bad faith; 3) for the
and trailed by the police officers, but the petitioner kept on
sole intent or prejudicing or injuring another. Thus, a person
saying the words Siya lang ang lumabas ng kwarto.
should be protected only when he acts in the legitimate exercise
Valmontes car was also searched but the search yielded
of his right, that is when he acts with prudence and good faith;
but not when he acts with negligence or abuse.
Few days after the incident, petitioner received a letter from
The Court said that petitioners verbal reproach against
Valmonte demanding a formal letter of apology which she
respondent was certainly uncalled for considering that by her
wanted to be circulated to the newlyweds relatives and guests
own account nobody knew that she brought such kind and
to redeem her smeared reputation but the petitioner did not
amount of jewelry inside the paper bag. This being the case,
respond. Valmonte filed a suit for damages.
she had no right to attack respondent with her innuendos which
were not merely inquisitve but outrightly accusatory. By openly that he cannot be held civilly liable for breaching his promise to
accusing respondent as the only person who went out of the marry Wassmer because there is no law upon which such an
room before the loss of the jewelry in the presence of all the action may be grounded. He also contested the award of
guests therein, and ordering that she be immediately bodily exemplary and moral damages against him.
searched, petitioner virtually branded respondent as the thief.
Petitioner had willfully caused injury to respondent in a manner ISSUE: Whether or not the award of damages is proper.
which is contrary to morals and good customs. Certainly,
petitioner transgressed the provisions of Article 19 in relation to HELD: Yes. The defense of fortuitous events raised by Velez is
Article 20 for which she should be held accountable. not tenable and also unsubstantiated. It is true that a breach of
promise to marry per se is not an actionable wrong. However, in
2. Contra bonus mores this case, it was not a simple breach of promise to marry.
Article 21. Any person who wilfully causes loss or injury to another in because of such promise, Wassmer made preparations for the
manner that is contrary to morals, good customs or public policy shall wedding.
compensate the latter for the damage.

Velezs unreasonable withdrawal from the wedding is

Beatriz Wassmer vs Francisco Velez
contrary to morals, good customs or public policy.
In 1954, Francisco Velez and Beatriz Wassmer planned their
Wassmers cause of action is supported under Article 21 of the
marriage. They decided to schedule it on September 4, 1954.
Civil Code which provides in part any person who wilfully
And so Wassmer made preparations such as: making and
causes loss or injury to another in a manner that is contrary to
sending wedding invitations, bought her wedding dress and
morals, good customs or public policy shall compensate the
other apparels, and other wedding necessities. But 2 days
latter for the damage.
before the scheduled day of wedding, Velez sent a letter to
Wassmer advising her that he will not be able to attend the
And under the law, any violation of Article 21 entitles the
wedding because his mom was opposed to said wedding.
injured party to receive an award for moral damages as
properly awarded by the lower court in this case. Further, the
And one day before the wedding, he sent another message to
award of exemplary damages is also proper. Here, the
Wassmer advising her that nothing has changed and that he will
circumstances of this case show that Velez, in breaching his
be returning soon. However, he never returned.
promise to Wassmer, acted in wanton, reckless, and oppressive
manner this warrants the imposition of exemplary damages
This prompted Wassmer to file a civil case against Velez. Velez
against him.
never filed an answer and eventually judgment was made in
favor of Wassmer. The court awarded exemplary and moral
damages in favor of Wassmer.
FACTS: Albenson Ent. delivered mild steel plates to Guaranteed
On appeal, Velez argued that his failure to attend the scheduled
Industries Inc. A Pacific Banking Corporation Check was paid
wedding was because of fortuitous events. He further argued
and drawn against the account of EL Woodworks. Check was
later dishonored for the reason Account Closed. Company for the sole intent of prejudicing or injuring another
traced source of check and later discovered that the signature
belonged to one Eugenio Baltao. Albenson made an extrajudical Elements under Article 21: contra bonus mores:
demand upon Baltao but latter denied that he issued the check there is an act which is legal
or that the signature was his. Company filed a complaint against but which is contrary to morals, good custom, public order or
Baltao for violation of BP 22. It was later discovered that private public policy
respondent had son: Eugene Baltao III, who manages the it is done with intent to injure
business establishment, EL Woodworks. No effort from the
father to inform Albenson of such information. Rather the father A person who has not been paid an obligation owed to him will
filed complaint for damages against Albenson. naturally seek ways to compel the debtor to pay him. It was
normal for petitioners to find means to make the issuer of the
ISSUE: Whether there is indeed cause for the damages against check pay the amount thereof. In the absence of a wrongful act
Albenson Enterprise. or omission or of fraud or bad faith, moral damages cannot be
RULING: Based on Art 19, 20, 21 of the civil code, petitioners awarded and that the adverse result of an action does not per
didnt have the intent to cause damage to the respondent or se make the action wrongful and subject the actor to the
enrich themselves but just to collect what was due to them. payment of damages, for the law could not have meant to
There was no abuse of right on the part of Albenson on impose a penalty on the right to litigate.
accusing Baltao of BP 22.
WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED and the decision of the
Albenson Corp. honestly believed that it was private respondent Court of Appeals in C.A. G.R. C.V. No. 14948 dated May 13,
who issued check based on ff inquiries: 1989, is hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Costs against
SEC records showed that president to Guaranteed was respondent Baltao.
Eugene Baltao
Bank said signature belonged to EB Gashem Shookat Baksh vs Court of Appeals
EB did not do his part in clarifying that there were in
fact 3 Ebs, Jr., Sr. and the III. In August 1986, while working as a waitress in Dagupan City,
Pangasinan, Marilou Gonzales, then 21 years old, met Gashem
There was no malicious prosecution on the part of Albenson: Shookat Baksh, a 29 year old exchange student from Iran who
there must be proof that: was studying medicine in Dagupan. The two got really close and
the prosecution was prompted by a sinister design to intimate.
vex and humiliate a person and
that damages was initiated deliberately by defendant On Marilous account, she said that Gashem later offered to
knowing that his charges were false and groundless marry her at the end of the semester. Marilou then introduced
Gashem to her parents where they expressed their intention to
Elements of abuse of right under Article 19: get married. Marilous parents then started inviting sponsors
there is a legal right or duty and relatives to the wedding. They even started looking for
exercised in bad faith animals to slaughter for the occasion.
disregard of Filipino traditions on marriage and on the
Meanwhile, Marilou started living with Gashem in his apartment reputation of Filipinas is contrary to morals, good customs, and
where they had sexual intercourse. But in no time, their public policy. As a foreigner who is enjoying the hospitality of
relationship went sour as Gashem began maltreating Marilou. our country and even taking advantage of the opportunity to
Gashem eventually revoked his promise of marrying Marilou and study here he is expected to respect our traditions. Any act
he told her that he is already married to someone in Bacolod contrary will render him liable under Article 21 of the Civil Code.
City. So Marilou went home and later sued Gashem for
damages. The Supreme Court also elucidated that Article 21 was meant to
expand the concepts of torts and quasi delict. It is meant to
The trial court ruled in favor of Marilou and awarded her P20k in cover situations such as this case where the breach complained
moral damages. The Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of of is not strictly covered by existing laws. It was meant as
the trial court. a legal remedy for the untold number of moral wrongs which is
impossible for human foresight to specifically enumerate and
On appeal, Gashem averred that he never proposed marriage to punish in the statute books such as the absence of a law
Marilou and that he cannot be adjudged to have violated Filipino penalizing a the breach of promise to marry.
customs and traditions since he, being an Iranian, was not
familiar with Filipino customs and traditions. The Supreme Court however agreed with legal luminaries that if
the promise to marry was made and there was carnal
ISSUE: Whether or not the Court of Appeals is correct. knowledge because of it, then moral damages may be
recovered (presence of moral or criminal seduction), Except if
HELD: Yes. Gashem is liable to pay for damages in favor of there was mutual lust; or if expenses were made because of the
Marilou not really because of his breach of promise to marry her promise (expenses for the wedding), then actual damages may
but based on Article 21 of the Civil Code which provides: be recovered.

Any person who wilfully causes loss or injury to another in a 3. Unjust enrichment
manner that is contrary to morals, good customs or public policy Article 22. Every person who through an act of performance by another,
shall compensate the latter for the damage. or any other means, acquires or comes into possession of something at
the expense of the latter without just or legal ground, shall return the
same to him.
Breach of promise to marry is not an actionable wrong per se. Article 23. Even when an act or event causing damage to another's
property was not due to the fault or negligence of the defendant, the latter
In this case, it is the deceit and fraud employed by Gashem that shall be liable for indemnity if through the act or event he was benefited.
constitutes a violation of Article 21 of the Civil Code. His
promise of marrying Marilou was a deceitful scheme to lure her CAR COOL PHILIPPINES, INC., represented in this act by
into sexual congress. As found by the trial court, Marilou was its President and General Manager VIRGILIO DELA
not a woman of loose morals. She was a virgin before she met ROSA, petitioner, vs. USHIO REALTY AND
Gashem. She would not have surrendered herself to Gashem DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, respondent
had Gashem not promised to marry her. Gashems blatant G.R. No. 138088. January 23, 2006
Issue: Whether or not the award of damages in favor of
Facts: respondent by way of rentals and attorneys fees constitute
unjust enrichment.
The spouses Hector and Gloria Hizon Lopez were the
original owners of the property involved in the case at Ruling:
bar. They leased it to Car Cool since 1972.
On 1992, they entered into a Verbal Lease Agreement for Records show that the advance payment for rentals made
two years. On 1995, the spouses informed Car Cool of by Car Cool to the spouses Lopez were never encashed. In fact
their intention to sell the property. They gave the latter the latter offered to return the check payments but Car
the option to buy, however they ignored the offer. For Cool refused. Thus the sale transaction between Lopezes and
this reason, USHIO was valid and so the latter is the rightful owner from
the spouses terminated the Verbal Lease Agreement August 1995.
with Car Cool and gave notice to the company to vacate
the property on the last day of August 1995. The award made to USHIO is legal for rentals. There is
In the same month, said property was sold to USHIO. unjust enrichment when a person unjustly retains a benefit to
The latter gave an extension to Car Cool to vacate the the loss of another, or when a person retains money or property
same up to the last day of September 1995. of another against the fundamental principles of justice, equity
USHIO gave their final demand on December 3 and and good conscience.
when Car Cool still ignored the notice, USHIO filed an
ejectment case against the petitioner. The principle of unjust enrichment under Article 22 of the Civil
Previous to this, Car Cool filed a criminal complaint Code requires two conditions: (1) that a person is benefited
against USHIO for alleged Robbery with force, Malicious without a valid basis or justification, and, (2) that such benefit is
mischief, and grave coercion during the attempt by the derived at anothers expense or damage. The requisites for
USHIO to eject the former and that they know that there unjust enrichment are not present on the part of the
is an existing contract between them and the Lopezes. respondent. There is no unjust enrichment when the person
They also filed a complaint for specific performance and who will benefit has valid claim to such benefit.
damages against the spouses invoking that they made
an advance payment in checks to them as monthly As regards the attorneys fees, the Appellate Court failed to
rentals for the years 1995 and 1996. state explicitly in its decision the basis for the award, hence it
The lower courts rendered judgment in favor of the cannot be recovered as part of damages. This is based on the
respondent (USHIO). policy that no premium should be placed on the right to litigate.
The Court of Appeals affirmed the decision with
modification with regard to the monthly rental period, The basis for its award must be based from factual, legal and
thus this petition. equitable justification.


532 SCRA 614 (2007)
Mr. Almarios contention was confirmed by the RTC but was
Courts will not allow one party to enrich himself at reversed by the Court of Appeals (CA).
the expense of another.
The CA found Almario liable under the CBA between PAL and
On April 28, 1995, Almario, then about 39 years of age and a ALPAP and, in any event, under Article 22 of the Civil Code.
Boeing 737 (B-737) First Officer at PAL, successfully bid for the Thus, this action for review on Certiorari by Mr. Almario.
higher position of Airbus 300 (A-300) First Officer. Since said
higher position required additional training, he underwent, at ISSUE: Whether or not the act of Mr. Almario is in violation of
PALs expense, more than five months of training consisting of the CBA.
ground schooling in Manila and flight simulation in Melbourne,
Australia. After completing the training course, Almario served HELD:
as A-300 First Officer of PAL, but after eight months of service Article XXIII, Section 1 of the CBA provides that pilots fifty-
as such, he tendered his resignation, for personal reasons. seven (57) years of age shall be frozen in their position and
Despite a letter coming from PAL to reconsider his resignation shall not be permitted to occupy any position in the companys
otherwise he will bear the cost of training, Mr. Almario still turbo-jet fleet. The reason why pilots who are 57 years of age
proceeded with his resignation. are no longer qualified to bid for a higher position is because
they have only three (3) years left before the mandatory
Later on, PAL filed a Complaint against Almario before retirement age of 60 and to send them to training at that age,
the Regional Trial Court (RTC), for reimbursement of P851,107 PAL would no longer be able to recover whatever training
worth of training costs, attorneys fees equivalent to 20% of the expenses it will have to incur.
said amount, and costs of litigation. PAL invoked the existence
of an innominate contract of do ut facias (I give that you may Simply put, the foregoing provision clearly and unequivocally
do) with Almario in that by spending for his training, he would recognizes the prohibitive training cost principle such that it will
render service to it until the costs of training were recovered in take a period of at least three (3) years before PAL could
at least three (3) years. Almario having resigned before the 3- recover from the training expenses it incurred.
year period, PAL prayed that he should be ordered to reimburse
the costs for his training. Admittedly, PAL invested for the training of Almario
to enable him to acquire a higher level of skill, proficiency, or
In his Answer, Almario denied the existence of any agreement technical competence so that he could efficiently discharge the
with PAL that he would have to render service to it for three position of A-300 First Officer. Given that, PAL expected to
years after his training failing which he would reimburse the recover the training costs by availing of Almarios services for at
training costs. He pointed out that the Collective Bargaining least three years. The expectation of PAL was not fully realized,
Agreement (CBA) between PAL and the Airline Pilots however, due to Almarios resignation after only eight months of
Association of the Philippines (ALPAP), of which he was a service following the completion of his training course. He
member, carried no such agreement. cannot, therefore, refuse to reimburse the costs of training
without violating the principle of unjust enrichment.
4. Judicial vigilance
Article 24. In all contractual, property or other relations, when one of the HELD:
parties is at a disadvantage on account of his moral dependence,
ignorance, indigence, mental weakness, tender age or other handicap,
the courts must be vigilant for his protection. 1. YES.
A stipulation in the bill of lading limiting the common carriers
Everett Streamship Corp. V. CA (1998) liability for loss or destruction of a cargo to a certain sum,
unless the shipper or owner declares a greater value, is
FACTS: Hernandez Trading Co., Inc. (Hernandez) imported 3 sanctioned by law, particularly Articles 1749 and 1750 of the
crates of bus spare parts (MARCO C/No. 12, MARCO C/No. 13 Civil Code which provide:
and MARCO C/No. 14), from Maruman Trading Company, Ltd.
(Maruman), a foreign corporation based in Japan. ART. 1749. A stipulation that the common carriers liability is
limited to the value of the goods appearing in the bill of lading,
The crates (covered by Bill of Lading No. NGO53MN) were unless the shipper or owner declares a greater value, is binding.
shipped on board ADELFAEVERETTE, a vessel owned by
Everett Orient Lines ART. 1750. A contract fixing the sum that may be recovered by
the owner or shipper for the loss, destruction, or deterioration
Upon arrival at the port of Manila, it was discovered that the of the goods is valid, if it is reasonable and just under the
crate marked MARCO C/No. 14 was missing circumstances, and has been freely and fairly agreed upon.

Hernandez made a formal claim for Y1,552,500.00, as shown in Maruman Trading, had the option to declare a higher valuation
an Invoice No. MTM-941, dated November 14, 1991 if the value of its cargo was higher than the limited liability of
the carrier. Considering that the shipper did not declare a
Everett Streamship Corp. offered to pay only Y100,000.00 the higher valuation, it had itself to blame for not complying with
maximum amount stipulated under Clause 18 of the covering the stipulations.
bill of lading
The trial courts ratiocination that private respondent could not
Hernandez rejected the offer and thereafter instituted a suit for have fairly and freely agreed to the limited liability clause in
collection the bill of lading because the said conditions were printed in
small letters does not make the bill of lading invalid.
Trial Court: in favor of Hernandez contracts of adhesion are valid and binding
CA: Affirmed but deleted the award of attorneys fees
Greater vigilance, however, is required of the courts when
ISSUE: dealing with contracts of adhesion in that the said contracts
W/N the limited liability clause in the Bill of Lading is valid must be carefully scrutinized in order to shield the unwary (or
W/N Hernandez as consignee, who is not a signatory to the bill weaker party) from deceptive schemes contained in ready-made
of lading is bound by the stipulations thereof covenant
Article 24 of the Civil Code which mandates that (i)n all The bill of lading in question confirms petitioners contention. To
contractual, property or other relations, when one of the parties defeat the carriers limited liability, the aforecited Clause 18 of the bill
is at a disadvantage on account of his moral dependence, of lading requires that the shipper should have declared in writing
ignorance, indigence, mental weakness, tender age or other a higher valuation of its goods before receipt thereof by the carrier
and insert the said declaration in the bill of lading, with the
handicap, the courts must be vigilant for his protection
extra freight paid. These requirements in the bill of lading were never
complied with by the shipper, hence, the liability of the carrier under
Maruman Trading, we assume, has been extensively engaged in the limited liability clause stands. The commercial Invoice No. MTM-
the trading business. It can not be said to be ignorant of the 941 does not in itself sufficiently and convincingly show that petitioner
business transactions it entered into involving the shipment of has knowledge of the value of the cargo as contended by private
its goods to its customers. The shipper could not have known, respondent. No other evidence was proffered by private respondent
or should know the stipulations in the bill of lading and there it to support is contention. Thus, we are convinced that petitioner
should have declared a higher valuation of the goods should be liable for the full value of the lost cargo.
shipped. Moreover, Maruman Trading has not been heard to In fine, the liability of petitioner for the loss of the cargo is limited
complain that it has been deceived or rushed into agreeing to to One Hundred Thousand (Y100,000.00) Yen, pursuant to Clause 18
ship the cargo in petitioners vessel. In fact, it was not even of the bill of lading.
impleaded in this case.
WHEREFORE, the decision of the Court of Appeals dated June
14, 1995 in C.A.-G.R. CV No. 42803 is hereby REVERSED and SET
When private respondent formally claimed reimbursement for the ASIDE.
missing goods from petitioner and subsequently filed a case against
the latter based on the very same bill of lading, it (private
respondent) accepted the provisions of the contract and thereby
made itself a party thereto, or at least has come to court to enforce 2. YES.
it.[9] Thus, private respondent cannot now reject or disregard the the right of a party in the same situation as Hernandez, to
carriers limited liability stipulation in the bill of lading. In other words,
recover for loss of a shipment consigned to him under a bill of
private respondent is bound by the whole stipulations in the bill of
lading drawn up only by and between the shipper and the
lading and must respect the same.
carrier, springs from either a relation of agency that may exist
Private respondent, however, insists that the carrier should be between him and the shipper or consignor, or his status as
liable for the full value of the lost cargo in the amount of stranger in whose favor some stipulation is made in said
Y1,552,500.00, considering that the shipper, Maruman Trading, had contract, and who becomes a party thereto when he demands
"fully declared the shipment x x x, the contents of each crate, the
fulfillment of that stipulation, in this case the delivery of the
dimensions, weight and value of the contents,"[10] as shown in the
goods or cargo shipped
commercial Invoice No. MTM-941.
This claim was denied by petitioner, contending that it did not When Hernandez formally claimed reimbursement for the
know of the contents, quantity and value of "the shipment which missing goods from Everett and subsequently filed a case
consisted of three pre-packed crates described in Bill of Lading No. against the it based on the very same bill of lading, it accepted
NGO-53MN merely as 3 CASES SPARE PARTS.[11]
the provisions of the contract and thereby made itself a party Complaint made no allegation the article referred
thereto, or at least has come to court to enforce it.[ specifically to any one of the private respondents;
The commercial Invoice No. MTM-941 does not in itself Libel can be committed only against individual
sufficiently and convincingly show that Everett has knowledge of reputation;
the value of the cargo as contended by Hernandez in cases where libel is claimed to have been directed at
a group, there is actionable defamation only if the libel
5. Dignity and privacy can be said to reach beyond the mere collectivity to do
Article 26. Every person shall respect the dignity, personality, privacy damage to a specific, individual group member's
and peace of mind of his neighbors and other persons. The following and reputation.
similar acts, though they may not constitute a criminal offense, shall
produce a cause of action for damages, prevention and other relief: (1)
Prying into the privacy of another's residence; (2) Meddling with or Issue: WON the complaint must be dismissed? YES.
disturbing the private life or family relations of another; (3) Intriguing to
cause another to be alienated from his friends; (4) Vexing or humiliating Corpus vs. Cuaderno, Sr.: "in order to maintain a libel suit, it is
another on account of his religious beliefs, lowly station in life, place of essential that the victim be identifiable, although it is not
birth, physical defect, or other personal condition.
necessary that he be named (19 A.L.R. 116)."
Newsweek v. IAC
Uy Tioco vs. Yang Shu Wen: Defamatory remarks directed at a
class or group of persons in general language only, are not
actionable by individuals composing the class or group unless
the statements are sweeping.
"An Island of Fear" was published by Newsweek in its Feb 23,
1981. It allegedly portrayed the island province of Negros
The case at bar is not a class suit. It is not a case where
Occidental as a place dominated by big landowners or
one or more may sue for the benefit of all
sugarcane planters who not only exploited the poor workers,
We have here a case where each of the plaintiffs has a
but also brutalized and killed them with impunity.
separate and distinct reputation in the community. They
Newsweek filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds
do not have a common or general interest in the subject
that the printed article sued upon is not actionable
matter of the controversy.
in fact and in law; the complaint is bereft of
allegations that state, much less support a cause of
Trial court denied the motion to dismiss. Complaint on its face
G.R. No. 190601 February 7, 2011
states a valid cause of action; and the question as to whether
the printed article sued upon its actionable or not is a matter of
Facts: Petitioner spouses, Luigi M. Guanio and Anna Hernandez-
Guanio, booked respondent Makati Shangre-La Hotel for their
wedding reception.
Petitioner: Complaint failed to state a cause of action because:
A week before their wedding reception, the hotel scheduled a relayed the delay in the service of the meals to complainants
food tasting. Eventually, the parties agreed to a package where father.
the final price was P1,150.00 per person.
According to the complainants, when the actual reception took The RTC, relying heavily on the letter of the hotels Executive
place, the respondents representatives did not show up Assistant ruled in favour of the complainants and awarded
despite their assurance that they would; their guests damages in their favour.
complained of the delay in the service of the dinner; certain
items listed in the published menu were unavailable; the hotels The Court of Appeals reversed the decision, noting that the
waiters were rude and unapologetic when confronted about the proximate cause of the complainants injury was the unexpected
delay; and despite Alvarezs promise that there would be no increase in the number of their guests.
charge for the extension of the reception beyond 12:00
midnight, they were billed and paid P8,000 per hour for the Issue: WON Makati Shangri-La Hotel may be held liable for
three-hour extension of the event up to 4:00 A.M. the next day. damages.

They further claim that they brought wine and liquor in Held:
accordance with their open bar arrangement, but these were
not served to the guests who were forced to pay for their The Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeals decision,
drinks. They sent a letter-complaint to hotel and received an noting that in this case, the obligation was based on a contract,
apologetic reply from the hotels Executive Assistant Manager in hence, the concept of proximate cause has no application.
charge of Food and Beverage.
In absolving the hotel from damages, the Supreme Court noted
Complainnats -They nevertheless filed a complaint for breach of that: The appellate court, and even the trial court, observed
contract and damages before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of that petitioners were remiss in their obligation to inform
Makati City. respondent of the change in the expected number of guests.
The observation is reflected in the records of the case.
Answering, the hotel said that complainants requested a Petitioners failure to discharge such obligation thus excused, as
combination of king prawns and salmon, hence, the price was the above-quoted paragraph 4.5 of the parties contract provide,
increased to P1,200.00 per person, but discounted at respondent from liability for any damage or inconvenience
P1,150.00; that contrary to their claim, the hotel representatives occasioned thereby
were present during the event, albeit they were not
permanently stationed thereat as there were three other hotel Nevertheless, on grounds of equity, the High Court awarded
functions; that while there was a delay in the service of the P50,000.00 in favour of the complainants and justified it by
meals, the same was occasioned by the sudden increase of saying:
guests to 470 from the guaranteed expected minimum number
of guests of 350 to a maximum of 380, as stated in the Banquet The exculpatory clause notwithstanding, the Court notes that
Event Order (BEO);2 and the Banquet Service Director in fact respondent could have managed the situation better, it being
held in high esteem in the hotel and service industry. Given
respondents vast experience, it is safe to presume that this is being reimbursed for loss caused by reliance on the contract by
not its first encounter with booked events exceeding the being put in as good a position as he would have been in had
guaranteed cover. It is not audacious to expect that certain the contract not been made; or hisrestitution interest, which is
measures have been placed in case this predicament crops up. his interest in having restored to him any benefit that he has
That regardless of these measures, respondent still received conferred on the other party. Indeed, agreements can
complaints as in the present case, does not amuse. accomplish little, either for their makers or for society, unless
they are made the basis for action.
Respondent admitted that three hotel functions coincided with
petitioners reception. To the Court, the delay in service might The effect of every infraction is to create a new duty, that is, to
have been avoided or minimized if respondent exercised make RECOMPENSE to the one who has been injured by the
foresight in scheduling events. No less than quality service failure of another to observe his contractual obligation unless he
should be delivered especially in events which possibility of can show extenuating circumstances, like proof of his exercise
repetition is close to nil. Petitioners are not expected to get of due diligence or of the attendance of fortuitous event to
married twice in their lifetimes. excuse him from his ensuing liability.

What applies in the present case is Article 1170 of the Civil Code 6. dereliction of duty
which reads: Article 27. Any person suffering material or moral loss because a public
servant or employee refuses or neglects, without just cause, to perform
his official duty may file an action for damages and other relief against the
Art. 1170. Those who in the performance of their obligations are latter, without prejudice to any disciplinary administrative action that may
guilty of fraud, negligence or delay, and those who in any be taken.
manner contravene the tenor thereof, are liable for damages.
RCPI v. Verchez, et al. enlightens: In culpa contractual x x x the G.R. No. 179799
mere proof of the existence of the contract and the failure of its
compliance justify, prima facie, a corresponding right of relief. FACTS: The case arose from the filing of an Affidavit of
The law, recognizing the obligatory force of contracts, will not Complaint for violation of B.P. 22 by Emma J. Datuin (Datuin),
permit a party to be set free from liability for any kind of as Officer-in-Charge of the Accounts Receivables Department,
misperformance of the contractual undertaking or a and upon authority of Sansio Philippines, Inc. (Sansio), against
contravention of the tenor thereof. A breach upon the contract Zenaida R. Gregorio (Gregorio) and one Vito Belarmino, as
confers upon the injured party a valid cause for recovering that proprietors of Alvi Marketing, allegedly for delivering
which may have been lost or suffered. insufficiently funded bank checks as payment for the numerous
appliances bought by Alvi Marketing from Sansio. As the
The remedy serves to preserve the interests of the promissee address stated in the complaint was incorrect, Gregorio was
that may include his expectation interest , which is his interest unable to controvert the charges against her. Consequently, she
in having the benefit of his bargain by being put in as good a was indicted for three (3) counts of violation of B.P. Blg. 22.
position as he would have been in had the contract been
performed, or his reliance interest ,which is his interest in
The MeTC issued a warrant for her arrest, and it was served HELD: A perusal of the allegations of Gregorios complaint for
upon her by the armed operatives of the Public Assistance and damages readily shows that she filed a civil suit against Sansio
Reaction Against Crime (PARAC) of the Department of Interior and Datuin for filing against her criminal charges for violation of
and Local Government (DILG) on October 17, 1997, Friday, at B.P. Blg. 22; that respondents did not exercise diligent efforts to
around 9:30 a.m. in Quezon City while she was visiting her ascertain the true identity of the person who delivered to them
husband and their two (2) daughters at their city residence. insufficiently funded checks as payment for the various
Gregorio was brought to the PARAC-DILG Office where she was appliances purchased; and that respondents never gave her the
subjected to fingerprinting and mug shots, and was detained. opportunity to controvert the charges against her, because they
She was released in the afternoon of the same day when her stated an incorrect address in the criminal complaint. Gregorio
husband posted a bond for her temporary liberty. claimed damages for the embarrassment and humiliation she
suffered when she was suddenly arrested at her city residence
On December 5, 1997, Gregorio filed before the MeTC a Motion in Quezon City while visiting her family. She was, at the time of
for Deferment of Arraignment and Reinvestigation, alleging that her arrest, a respected Kagawad in Oas, Albay. Gregorio
she could not have issued the bounced checks, since she did anchored her civil complaint on Articles 26, 2176, and 2180 of
not even have a checking account with the bank on which the the Civil Code. Noticeably, despite alleging either fault or
checks were drawn, as certified by the branch manager of the negligence on the part of Sansio and Datuin, Gregorio never
Philippine National Bank, Sorsogon Branch. She also alleged imputed to them any bad faith in her complaint.
that her signature was patently and radically different from the
signatures appearing on the bounced checks. Basic is the legal principle that the nature of an action is
determined by the material averments in the complaint and the
The MeTC granted the Motion and a reinvestigation was character of the relief sought. Undeniably, Gregorios civil
conducted. In the course of the reinvestigation, Datuin complaint, read in its entirety, is a complaint based on quasi-
submitted an Affidavit of Desistance stating, among others, that delict under Article 2176, in relation to Article 26 of the Civil
Gregorio was not one of the signatories of the bounced checks Code, rather than on malicious prosecution.
subject of prosecution.
In every tort case filed under Article 2176 of the Civil Code, the
On August 18, 2000, Gregorio filed a complaint for damages plaintiff has to prove by a preponderance of evidence: (1) the
against Sansio and Datuin before the Regional Trial Court damages suffered by him; (2) the fault or negligence of the
(RTC), Branch 12, Ligao, Albay. Sansio and Datuin filed a defendant or some other person to whose act he must respond;
Motion to Dismiss on the ground that the complaint, being one (3) the connection of cause and effect between the fault or
for damages arising from malicious prosecution, failed to state a negligence and the damages incurred; and (4) that there must
cause of action, as the ultimate facts constituting the elements be no preexisting contractual relation between the parties.
thereof were not alleged in the complaint.
On the other hand, Article 26 of the Civil Code grants a cause of
ISSUE: Whether the complaint, a civil suit filed by Gregorio, is action for damages, prevention, and other relief in cases of
based on quasi-delict or malicious prosecution. breach, though not necessarily constituting a criminal offense,
of the following rights: (1) right to personal dignity; (2) right to
personal security; (3) right to family relations; (4) right to social 7. Malicions prosecution
intercourse; (5) right to privacy; and (6) right to peace of mind.
8. Unfair competition
A scrutiny of Gregorios civil complaint reveals that the Article 28. Unfair competition in agricultural, commercial or industrial
averments thereof, taken together, fulfill the elements of Article enterprises or in labor through the use of force, intimidation, deceit,
machination or any other unjust, oppressive or highhanded method shall
2176, in relation to Article 26 of the Civil Code. It appears that give rise to a right of action by the person who thereby suffers damage.
Gregorios rights to personal dignity, personal security, privacy,
and peace of mind were infringed by Sansio and Datuin when WILLAWARE PRODUCTS CORPORATION, Petitioner,
they failed to exercise the requisite diligence in determining the vs. JESICHRIS MANUFACTURING
identity of the person they should rightfully accuse of tendering CORPORATION, Respondent.
insufficiently funded checks. This fault was compounded when
they failed to ascertain the correct address of petitioner, thus Facts:
depriving her of the opportunity to controvert the charges,
because she was not given proper notice. Because she was not Jesichris Manufacturing Company the respondent filed this
able to refute the charges against her, petitioner was falsely present complaint for damages for unfair competition with
indicted for three (3) counts of violation of B.P. Blg. 22. prayer for permanent injunction to enjoin Willaware Products
Although she was never found at No. 76 Pearanda St., Legaspi Corporation the petitioner from manufacturing and distributing
City, the office address of Alvi Marketing as stated in the plastic-made automotive parts similar to Jesichris Manufacturing
criminal complaint, Gregorio was conveniently arrested by Company. The respondent, alleged that it is a duly registered
armed operatives of the PARAC-DILG at her city residence at 78 partnership engaged in the manufacture and distribution of
K-2 St., Kamuning, Quezon City, while visiting her family. She plastic and metal products, with principal office at No. 100 Mithi
suffered embarrassment and humiliation over her sudden arrest Street, Sampalukan, Caloocan City. Since its registration in
and detention and she had to spend time, effort, and money to 1992, Jesichris Manufacturing Company has been manufacturing
clear her tarnished name and reputation, considering that she in its Caloocan plant and distributing throughout the Philippines
had held several honorable positions in different organizations plastic-made automotive parts. Willaware Products
and offices in the public service, particularly her being a Corporation, on the other hand, which is engaged in the
Kagawad in Oas, Albay at the time of her arrest. There exists no manufacture and distribution of kitchenware items made of
contractual relation between Gregorio and Sansio. On the other plastic and metal has its office near that of the Jesichris
hand, Gregorio is prosecuting Sansio, under Article 2180 of the Manufacturing Company. Respondent further alleged that in
Civil Code, for its vicarious liability, as employer, arising from view of the physical proximity of petitioners office to
the act or omission of its employee Datuin. respondents office, and in view of the fact that some of the
respondents employees had transferred to petitioner, petitioner
These allegations, assuming them to be true, sufficiently had developed familiarity with respondents products, especially
constituted a cause of action against Sansio and Datuin. Thus, its plastic-made automotive parts.
the RTC was correct when it denied respondents motion to
That sometime in November 2000, [respondent] discovered that From the foregoing, it is clear that what is being sought to be
[petitioner] had been manufacturing and distributing the same prevented is not competition per se but the use of unjust,
automotive parts with exactly similar design, same material and oppressive or high handed methods which may deprive others
colors but was selling these products at a lower price as of a fair chance to engage in business or to earn a living.
[respondents] plastic-made automotive parts and to the same Plainly,what the law prohibits is unfair competition and not
customers. competition where the means use dare fair and legitimate.

Respondent alleged that it had originated the use of plastic in In sum, petitioner is guilty of unfair competition under Article 28
place of rubber in the manufacture of automotive under chassis of the Civil Code.
parts such as spring eye bushing, stabilizer bushing, shock However, since the award of Two Million Pesos (P2,000,000.00)
absorber bushing, center bearing cushions, among others. in actual damages had been deleted and in its place Two
[Petitioners] manufacture of the same automotive parts with Hundred Thousand Pesos (P200,000.00) in nominal damages is
plastic material was taken from respondents idea of using awarded, the attorney's fees should concomitantly be modified
plastic for automotive parts. Also, [petitioner] deliberately and lowered to Fifty Thousand Pesos (P50,000.00).
copied [respondents] products all of which acts constitute
unfair competition, is and are contrary to law, morals, good 9. Independent civil actions/civil and political
customs and public policy and have caused [respondent] rights/intentional torts
damages in terms of lost and unrealized profits in the amount of Article 32. Any public officer or employee, or any private individual, who
2,000,000 as of the date of respondents complaint. 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:(1) Freedom of religion; (2) Freedom of
Issue: speech; (3) Freedom to write for the press or to maintain a periodical
1. Whether or not there is unfair competition under human publication; (4) Freedom from arbitrary or illegal detention; (5) Freedom
relations when the parties are not competitors and there is of suffrage; (6) The right against deprivation of property without due
actually no damage on the part of Jesichris? process of law; (7) The right to a just compensation when private property
is taken for public use; (8) The right to the equal protection of the laws;
2. Consequently, if there is no unfair competition, should there (9) The right to be secure in one's person, house, papers, and effects
be moral damages and attorneys fees? against unreasonable searches and seizures; (10) The liberty of abode
3. Whether or not the addition of nominal damages is proper and of changing the same; (11) The privacy of communication and
although no rights have been established? correspondence; (12) The right to become a member of associations or
societies for purposes not contrary to law; (13) The right to take part in a
peaceable assembly to petition the Government for redress of
grievances; (14) The right to be a free from involuntary servitude in any
Held: Article 28 of the Civil Code provides that "unfair form; (15) The right of the accused against excessive bail; (16) The right
competition in agricultural, commercial or industrial enterprises of the accused to be heard by himself and counsel, to be informed of the
or in labor through the use of force, intimidation, deceit, nature and cause of the accusation against him, to have a speedy and
machination or any other unjust, oppressive or high-handed public trial, to meet the witnesses face to face, and to have compulsory
process to secure the attendance of witness in his behalf; (17) Freedom
method shall give rise to a right of action by the person who from being compelled to be a witness against one's self, or from being
thereby suffers damage." forced to confess guilt, or from being induced by a promise of immunity or
reward to make such confession, except when the person confessing
becomes a State witness; (18) Freedom from excessive fines, or cruel 1962 Alberto Timbangcaya filed a complaint with the Office of
and unusual punishment, unless the same is imposed or inflicted in the Provincial Fiscal of Palawan alleging that after the sale Jikil
accordance with a statute which has not been judicially declared
unconstitutional; and (19) Freedom of access to the courts. In any of the Taha forcibly took away the motor launch from him.
cases referred to in this article, whether or not the defendant's act or
omission constitutes a criminal offense, the aggrieved party has a right to Fiscal Francisco Ponce de Leon, upon being informed that the
commence an entirely separate and distinct civil action for damages, and motor launch was in Balabac, Palawan, wrote the Provincial
for other relief. Such civil action shall proceed independently of any Commander of Palawan requesting him to direct the
criminal prosecution (if the latter be instituted), and may be proved by a
preponderance of evidence. The indemnity shall include moral damages. detachment commander-in Balabac to impound and take
Exemplary damages may also be adjudicated. The responsibility herein custody of the motor launch.
set forth is not demandable from a judge unless his act or omission
constitutes a violation of the Penal Code or other penal statute. On June 26, 1962, Fiscal Ponce de Leon reiterated his request
Article 33. In cases of defamation, fraud, and physical injuries a civil to the Provincial Commander to impound the motor launch,
action for damages, entirely separate and distinct from the criminal
action, may be brought by the injured party. Such civil action shall explaining that its subsequent sale to a third party, plaintiff-
proceed independently of the criminal prosecution, and shall require only appellant Delfin Lim, cannot prevent the court from taking
a preponderance of evidence. custody of the same. 2 So, on July 6, 1962 upon order of the
Article 34. When a member of a city or municipal police force refuses or Provincial Commander, defendant-appellee Orlando Maddela,
fails to render aid or protection to any person in case of danger to life or Detachment Commander of Balabac, Palawan, seized the motor
property, such peace officer shall be primarily liable for damages, and the
city or municipality shall be subsidiarily responsible therefor. The civil launch "SAN RAFAEL" from plaintiff-appellant Delfin Lim and
action herein recognized shall be independent of any criminal impounded it.
proceedings, and a preponderance of evidence shall suffice to support
such action. Delfin Lim and Jikil Taha filed a case against Fiscal Francisco
Article 35. When a person, claiming to be injured by a criminal offense, Ponce de Leon and Orlando Maddela, alleging that on July 6,
charges another with the same, for which no independent civil action is
granted in this Code or any special law, but the justice of the peace finds 1962 Orlando Maddela entered the premises of Delfin Lim
no reasonable grounds to believe that a crime has been committed, or without a search warrant and then and there took away the hull
the prosecuting attorney refuses or fails to institute criminal proceedings, of the motor launch without his consent; that he effected the
the complaint may bring a civil action for damages against the alleged seizure upon order of Fiscal Ponce de Leon who knew fully well
offender. Such civil action may be supported by a preponderance of that his office was not vested with authority to order the seizure
evidence. Upon the defendant's motion, the court may require the plaintiff
to file a bond to indemnify the defendant in case the complaint should be of a private property; that said motor launch was purchased by
found to be malicious. If during the pendency of the civil action, an Delfin Lim from Jikil Taha in consideration of Three Thousand
information should be presented by the prosecuting attorney, the civil Pesos (P3,000.00), Two Thousand Pesos (P2,000.00) of which
action shall be suspended until the termination of the criminal has been given to Jikil Taha as advance payment; that as
proceedings. a consequence of the unlawful seizure of the motor launch, its
sale did not materialize; and that since July 6, 1962, the said
Lim vs. Ponce De Leon motor launch had been moored at the Balabac Bay, Palawan
and because of exposure to the elements it had become
FACTS: Taha sold to a certain Alberto Timbangcaya a motor worthless and beyond repair.
launch named M/L "SAN RAFAEL". A year later or on April 9,
In their answer, defendants-appellees denied the material that defendants should have acted with malice or bad faith.
allegations of the complaint and as affirmative defenses alleged Except for Madella who was merely acting under orders.
that the motor launch in question which was sold by Jikil Taha
to Alberto Timbangcaya on April 29, 1961 was sometime in April RATIO DICIDENDI:
1962, forcibly taken with violence upon persons and with intent since in the present case defendants-appellees seized the motor
to gain by Jikil Taha from Alfredo Timbangcaya without the launch without a warrant, they have violated the constitutional
latter's knowledge and consent, thus giving rise to the filing of right of plaintiffs-appellants against unreasonable search and
a criminal charge of robbery against Jikil Taha; that Fiscal Ponce seizure.
de Leon, in his capacity as Acting Provincial Fiscal of Palawan
ordered Orlando Maddela to seize and impound the motor Under the old Constitution 7 the power to issue
launch "SAN RAFAEL", for being the corpus delicti of the a search warrant is vested in a judge or magistrate and in no
robbery; and that Orlando Maddela merely obeyed the orders of other officer and no search and seizure can be made without a
his superior officer to impound said launch. By way of proper warrant. At the time the act complained of
counterclaim, defendants-appellees alleged that because of the was committed, there was no law or rule that recognized the
malicious and groundless filing of the complaint by plaintiffs- authority of Provincial Fiscals to issue a search warrant. In his
appellants, they were constrained to engage the services of vain attempt to justify the seizure of the motor launch in
lawyers, each of them paying P500.00 as attorney's fees; and question without a warrant Fiscal Ponce de Leon invoked the
that they suffered moral damages in the amount of P5,000.00 provisions of Republic Act No. 732, which amended Sections
each and actual damages in the amount of P500.00 each. They 1674 and 1687 of the Revised Administrative Code. But there is
also prayed that each of them awarded exemplary damages in nothing in said law which confers upon the provincial fiscal; the
the amount of P1,000.00. authority to issue warrants, much less to order without warrant
the seizure of a personal property even if it is
ISSUES/HELD: whether or not defendant-appellee Fiscal Ponce the corpusdelicti of a crime. True, Republic Act No. 732 has
de Leon had the power to order the seizure of the motor launch broadened the power of provincial fiscals to conduct preliminary
in question without a warrant of search and seizure even if the investigations, but said law did not divest the judge or
same was admittedly the corpus delicti of the crime. magistrate of its power to determine, before issuing the
corresponding warrant, whether or not probable cause exists
ANSWER: NEGATIVE. the power to issue a search warrant is therefor. 8
vested in a judge or magistrate and in no other officer and
no search and seizure can be made without a proper warrant We are not prepared to sustain his defense of good faith. To be
whether or not defendants-appellees are civilly liable to liable under Article 32 of the New Civil Code it is enough that
plaintiffs-appellants for damages allegedly suffered by them there was a violation of the constitutional rights of the plaintiffs
granting that the seizure of the motor launch was unlawful. and it is not required that defendantsshould have acted with
malice or bad faith.
ANSWER. AFFIRMATIVE. To be liable under Article 32 of the
New Civil Code it is enough that there was a violation of the But defendant-appellee Orlando Maddela cannot be held
constitutional rights of the plaintiffs and it is not required accountable because he impounded the motor launch upon the
order of his superior officer. While a subordinate officer may be exercise the diligence of a good father of a family in the
held liable for executing unlawful orders of his superior officer, supervision and control of its employee to avoid the injury
there are certain circumstances which would warrant Maddela's Superguard:
exculpation from liability. The records show that after Fiscal Torzuela's act of shooting Dulay was beyond the scope of his
Ponce de Leon made his first request to the Provincial duties, and was committed with deliberate intent (dolo), the
Commander on June 15, 1962 Maddela was reluctant to civil liability therefor is governed by Article 100 of the Revised
impound the motor launch despite repeated orders from his Penal Code, which states:
superior officer. 21 It was only after he was furnished a copy of
the reply of Fiscal Ponce de Leon, dated June 26, 1962, to the Art. 100. Civil liability of a person guilty of a felony. Every
letter of the Provincial Commander, justifying the necessity of person criminally liable for a felony is also civilly liable.
the seizure of the motor launch on the ground that the civil liability under Article 2176 applies only to quasi-offenses
subsequent sale of the launch to Delfin Lim could not prevent under Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code
the court from taking custody of the same, 22 that he
impounded the motor launch on July 6, 1962. With said letter CA Affirmed RTC: dismising the case of Dulay
coming from the legal officer of the province, Maddela was led
to believe that there was a legal basis and authority to impound ISSUE: W/N Superguard and Safeguard commited an actionable
the launch. Then came the order of his superior officer to breach and can be civilly liable even if Benigno Torzuela is
explain for the delay in the seizure of the motor already being prosecuted for homicide
launch. 23 Faced with a possible disciplinary action from his
Commander, Maddela was left with no alternative but to seize HELD: YES. Petition for Review is Granted. remanded to RTC
the vessel. In the light of the above circumstances. We are not for trial on the merits
disposed to hold Maddela answerable for damages.
Rule 111 of the Rules on Criminal Procedure provides:
Sec. 1. Institution of criminal and civil actions. When a criminal
Maria Benita A. Dulay, Et Al., V. The Court Of Appeals, Et action is instituted, the civil action for the recovery of civil
Al.(1995) liability is impliedly instituted with the criminal action, unless the
offended party waives the civil action , reserves his right to
FACTS: December 7, 1988: Due to a heated argument, Benigno institute it separately or institutes the civil action prior to the
Torzuela, the security guard on duty at Big Bang Sa criminal action
Alabang carnival, shot and killed Atty. Napoleon Dulay
Such civil action includes recovery of indemnity under the
Maria Benita A. Dulay, widow of the deceased Napoleon Dulay, Revised Penal Code, and damages under Articles 32, 33, 34,
in her own behalf and in behalf of her minor children filed and 2176 of the Civil Code of the Philippines arising from the
an action for damages against Benigno Torzuela for wanton and same act or omission of the accused
reckless discharge of the firearm and Safeguard Investigation
and Security Co., Inc., (Safeguard) and/or Superguard Security Contrary to the theory of private respondents, there is no
Corp. (Superguard) as employers for negligence having failed to justification for limiting the scope of Article 2176 of the Civil
Code to acts or omissions resulting from negligence. Well- stayed overnight at the female locker room at the basement of
entrenched is the doctrine that article 2176 covers not only acts the hotel. At dawn, she heard pounding sounds outside, she
committed with negligence, but also acts which are voluntary saw five men in barong tagalog whom she failed to recognize
and intentional. but she was sure were not employees of the hotel, forcibly
opening the door of the union office. In the morning, as union
Article 2176, where it refers to "fault or negligence," covers not officer Soluta was trying in vain to open the door of the union
only acts "not punishable by law" but also acts criminal in office, Loida narrated to him what she had witnessed at dawn.
character; whether intentional and voluntary or negligent. Soluta immediately lodged a complaint before the Security
Consequently, a separate civil action against the offender in a Officer. And he fetched a locksmith. At that instant, men in
criminal act, whether or not he is criminally prosecuted and barong tagalog armed with clubs arrived and started hitting
found guilty or acquitted, provided that the offended party is Soluta and his companions. Panlilio thereupon instructed
not allowed, if he is actually charged also criminally, to recover Villanueva to force open the door, and the latter did. Once
damages on both scores, and would be entitled in such inside, Panlilio and his companions began searching the office,
eventuality only to the bigger award of the two, assuming the over the objection of Babay who even asked them if they had a
awards made in the two cases vary extinction of civil liability search warrant. A plastic bag was found containing marijuana
referred to in Par. (e) of Section 3, Rule 111, refers exclusively flowering tops.
to civil liability founded on Article 100 of the Revised Penal
Code, whereas the civil liability for the same act considered as As a result of the discovery of the presence of marijuana in the
quasi-delict only and not as a crime is not extinguished even by union office and after the police conducted an investigation of
a declaration in the criminal case that the criminal act charged the incident, a complaint against the 13 union officers was filed
has not happened or has not been committed by the accused before the Fiscals Office of Manila. RTC acquitted the accused.
On appeal, the CA affirmed with modification the decision of the
It is enough that the complaint alleged that Benigno Torzuela trial court.
shot Napoleon Dulay resulting in the latter's death; that the
shooting occurred while Torzuela was on duty; and that either ISSUE: Whether respondent individual can recover damages for
SUPERGUARD and/or SAFEGUARD was Torzuela's employer and violation of constitutional rights.
responsible for his acts.
RULING: Article 32, in relation to Article 2219(6) and (10) of the
G.R. No. 163087 February 20, 2006 Civil Code, allows so.
MARCEL PANLILIO, Petitioners, ART. 32. Any public officer or employee, or any private
vs. ROGELIO S. SOLUTA, JOSELITO SANTOS, EDNA individual, who directly or indirectly obstructs, defeats, violates
BERNATE, VICENTA DELOLA, FLORENTINO MATILLA, or in any manner impedes or impairs any of the following rights
and GLOWHRAIN-SILAHIS UNION CHAPTER, and liberties of another person shall be liable to the latter for
Respondents. damages:

FACTS: Loida Somacera (Loida), a laundrywoman of the hotel, In the present case, petitioners had, by their own claim, already
received reports in late 1987 of illegal activities and Maniego On June 10, 1993, the legislature enacted RA 7654, which
conducted surveillance. Yet, in the morning of January 11, provided that locally manufactured cigarettes which are
1988, petitioners and their companions barged into and currently classified and taxed at 55% shall be charged an ad
searched the union office without a search warrant, despite valorem tax of 55% provided that the maximum tax shall not
ample time for them to obtain one. be less than Five Pesos per pack. Prior to effectivity of RA
The course taken by petitioners and company stinks in illegality. 7654, Liwayway issued a rule, reclassifying Champion, Hope,
Petitioners violation of individual respondents constitutional and More (all manufactured by Fortune) as locally
right against unreasonable search thus furnishes the basis for manufactured cigarettes bearing foreign brand subject to the
the award of damages under Article 32 of the Civil Code. For 55% ad valorem tax. Thus, when RA 7654 was passed, these
respondents, being the lawful occupants of the office had the cigarette brands were already covered.
right to raise the question of validity of the search and seizure.
In a case filed against Liwayway with the RTC, Fortune
Article 32 speaks of an officer or employee or person "directly or contended that the issuance of the rule violated its
indirectly" responsible for the violation of the constitutional constitutional right against deprivation of property without due
rights and liberties of another. Hence, it is not the actor alone process of law and the right to equal protection of the laws.
who must answer for damages under Article 32; the person
indirectly responsible has also to answer for the damages or For her part, Liwayway contended in her motion to dismiss that
injury caused to the aggrieved party. Such being the case, respondent has no cause of action against her because she
petitioners, together with Maniego and Villanueva, the ones who issued RMC 37-93 in the performance of her official function
orchestrated the illegal search, are jointly and severally liable for and within the scope of her authority. She claimed that she
actual, moral and exemplary damages to herein individual acted merely as an agent of the Republic and therefore the
respondents in accordance with the earlier-quoted pertinent latter is the one responsible for her acts. She also contended
provision of Article 32, in relation to Article 2219(6) and (10) of that the complaint states no cause of action for lack of
the Civil Code which provides: allegation of malice or bad faith.

Art. 2219. Moral damages may be recovered in the following The order denying the motion to dismiss was elevated to the
and analogous cases, among others, (6) Illegal search and (10) CA, who dismissed the case on the ground that under Article 32,
Acts and action referred to in Articles 21, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, liability may arise even if the defendant did not act with malice
34 and 35. or bad faith.

DECISION: Denied. Hence this appeal.

Liwayway Vinzons-Chato vs. Fortune Tobacco, Corp. ISSUES: Whether or not a public officer may be validly sued in
his/her private capacity for acts done in connection with the
FACTS: This is a case for damages under Article 32 of the Civil discharge of the functions of his/her office
Code filed by Fortune against Liwayway as CIR. Whether or not Article 32, NCC, should be applied instead of
Sec. 38, Book I, Administrative Code
HELD: Article 32 was patterned after the tort in American law. A tort
is a wrong, a tortious act which has been defined as the
On the first issue, the general rule is that a public officer is not commission or omission of an act by one, without right,
liable for damages which a person may suffer arising from the whereby another receives some injury, directly or indirectly, in
just performance of his official duties and within the scope of person, property or reputation. There are cases in which it has
his assigned tasks. An officer who acts within his authority to been stated that civil liability in tort is determined by the
administer the affairs of the office which he/she heads is not conduct and not by the mental state of the tortfeasor, and there
liable for damages that may have been caused to another, as it are circumstances under which the motive of the defendant has
would virtually be a charge against the Republic, which is not been rendered immaterial. The reason sometimes given for the
amenable to judgment for monetary claims without its consent. rule is that otherwise, the mental attitude of the alleged
However, a public officer is by law not immune from damages in wrongdoer, and not the act itself, would determine whether the
his/her personal capacity for acts done in bad faith which, being act was wrongful. Presence of good motive, or rather, the
outside the scope of his authority, are no longer protected by absence of an evil motive, does not render lawful an act which
the mantle of immunity for official actions. is otherwise an invasion of anothers legal right; that is, liability
in tort in not precluded by the fact that defendant acted without
Specifically, under Sec. 38, Book I, Administrative Code, civil evil intent.
liability may arise where there is bad faith, malice, or gross
negligence on the part of a superior public officer. And, under ALFONSO T. YUCHENGCO, Petitioner, v. THE MANILA
Sec. 39 of the same Book, civil liability may arise where the CHRONICLE PUBLISHING CORPORATION, NOEL
subordinate public officers act is characterized by willfulness or CABRERA, GERRY ZARAGOZA, DONNA GATDULA,
negligence. In Cojuangco, Jr. V. CA, a public officer who directly RODNEY P. DIOLA, RAUL VALINO, THELMA SAN JUAN
or indirectly violates the constitutional rights of another, may be and ROBERT COYIUTO, JR., Respondents.
validly sued for damages under Article 32 of the Civil Code even
if his acts were not so tainted with malice or bad faith. PERALTA, J.:

Thus, the rule in this jurisdiction is that a public officer may be FACTS: The present controversy arose when in the last quarter
validly sued in his/her private capacity for acts done in the of 1993, several allegedly defamatory articles against petitioner
course of the performance of the functions of the office, where were published in The Manila Chronicle by Chronicle Publishing
said public officer: (1) acted with malice, bad faith, or Corporation.
negligence; or (2) where the public officer violated a
constitutional right of the plaintiff. Petitioner filed a complaint against respondents before the RTC
of Makati City under three separate causes of action, namely:
On the second issue, SC ruled that the decisive provision is (1) for damages due to libelous publication against Neal H.
Article 32, it being a special law, which prevails over a general Cruz, Ernesto Tolentino, Noel Cabrera, Thelma San Juan, Gerry
law (the Administrative Code). Zaragoza, Donna Gatdula, Raul Valino, Rodney P. Diola, all
members of the editorial staff and writers of The Manila
Chronicle, and Chronicle Publishing; (2) for damages due to more importantly, in order to write finis to the present
abuse of right against Robert Coyiuto, Jr. and Chronicle controversy.
Publishing; and (3) for attorneys fees and costs against all the
respondents. ISSUE: (1) Whether Coyuito, Jr., was Chariman of Manila
Chronicle Publishing Corporation when the libelous articles were
Trial court rendered a Decision in favor of petitioner. published, (2) Whether petitioners cause of action based on
Abuse of Rights warrants the award of damages.
Aggrieved, respondents sought recourse before the CA. The CA
rendered a Decision affirming in toto the decision of the RTC. HELD: FINDINGS OF FACTS BY THE LOWER COURT, WHEN
Respondents then filed an MR. The CA rendered an Amended
Decision reversing the earlier Decision. From these Comments and contrary to Coyiuto, Jr.s contention,
it was substantially established that he was the Chairman of
Subsequently, petitioner filed the present recourse before this Manila Chronicle Publishing Corporation when the subject
Court. articles were published. Coyiuto, Jr. even admitted this fact in
his Reply and Comment on Request for Admission. Both the trial
This Court rendered a Decision partially granting the petition. court and the CA affirmed this fact. We reiterate that factual
findings of the trial court, when adopted and confirmed by the
Respondents later filed a MR dated which the Court denied. CA, are binding and conclusive on this Court and will generally
not be reviewed on appeal.
Meanwhile, respondent Coyiuto, Jr. also filed a Motion for Leave
to File Supplemental MR with Attached Supplemental Motion. AWARD OF DAMAGES BASED ON ABUSE OF RIGHT, PROPER
A right, though by itself legal because recognized or granted by
On April 21, 2010, this Court issued a Resolution grant Coyiuto, law as such, may nevertheless become the source of some
Jr.s motion for leave to file supplemental motion for illegality. When a right is exercised in a manner which does not
reconsideration, and require petitioner to comment on the conform with the norms enshrined in Article 19 and results in
motion for reconsideration and supplemental motion for damage to another, a legal wrong is thereby committed for
reconsideration. Petitioner filed his Comment. which the wrongdoer must be held responsible. But while Article
19 lays down a rule of conduct for the government of human
It is apparent that the MR of respondents generally reiterates relations and for the maintenance of social order, it does not
the arguments previously advanced by respondents. provide a remedy for its violation. Generally, an action for
damages under either Article 20 or Article 21 would be proper.
However, from the supplemental motion for reconsideration, it Here, it was found that Coyiuto, Jr. indeed abused his rights as
is apparent that Coyiuto, Jr. raises a new matter which has not Chairman of The Manila Chronicle, which led to the publication
been raised in the proceedings below. This notwithstanding, of the libelous articles in the said newspaper, thus, entitling
basic equity dictates that Coyiuto, Jr. should be given all the petitioner to damages under Article 19, in relation to Article 20.
opportunity to ventilate his arguments in the present action, but
Coyuito, Jr.'s supplemental MR is partially granted.