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Sabina Exconde vs Delfin and Dante Capuno

101 Phil 843 – Civil Law – Torts and Damages – Liability of Parents

Dante Capuno was a 15 year old boy who was a pupil of Balintawak Elementary School. In March 1949,
he attended a boy scout parade for Dr. Jose Rizal. While they were inside a jeep, he took control of the
wheels which he later lost control of causing the jeep to go turtle thereby killing two other students,
Isidoro Caperina and one other. Isidoro’s mother, Sabina Exconde, sued Dante Capuno for the death of
her son. Pending the criminal action, the mother reserved her right to file a separate civil action which
she subsequently filed against Dante and his dad, Delfin Capuno.

ISSUE:Whether or not Delfin Capuno, as the father of Dante is liable for damages.

HELD:Yes. 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 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”. 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 which Delfin failed to prove.

On the other hand, the school is not liable. It is true that under the law, “teachers or directors of arts
and trades are liable for any damages 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.

MACARIO TAMARGO, CELSO TAMARGO and AURELIA TAMARGO, petitioners,

vs.

HON. COURT OF APPEALS, THE HON. ARISTON L. RUBIO, RTC Judge, Branch 20, Vigan, Ilocos Sur; VICTOR
BUNDOC; and CLARA BUNDOC, respondents.

G.R. No. 85044 June 3, 1992

FELICIANO, J.:
https://i2.wp.com/schwalblegal.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/parental.png

Facts:

On 20 October 1982, Adelberto Bundoc, a minor, 10 years old, shot Jennifer Tamargo with an air rifle
causing injuries which resulted in her death. The natural parents of Tamargo filed a complaint for
damages against the natural parents of Adelberto with whom he was living the time of the tragic
incident.

In December 1981, spouses Sabas and Felisa Rapisura filed a petition to adopt Adelberto. The petition
was granted in November 1982 that is after Adelberto had shot and killed Jennifer.

Adelberto’s parents, in their Answer, claimed that the spouses Rapisura were indispensable parties to
the action since parental authority had shifted to them from the moment the petition for adoption was
decreed. Spouses Tamargo contended that since Adelberto was then actually living with his natural
parents, parental authority had not ceased by mere filing and granting of the petition for adoption. Trial
court dismissed the spouses Tamargo’s petition.

Issue:

Whether or not the spouses Rapisura are the indispensable parties to actions committed by Adelberto.

Held:

No. In Article 221 of the Family Code states that: “Parents and other persons exercising parental
authority shall be civilly liable for the injuries and damages caused by the acts or omissions of their
unemancipated children living in their company and under their parental authority subject to the
appropriate defences provided by law.”
In the case at bar, parental authority over Adelberto was still lodged with the natural parents at the time
the shooting incident happened. It follows that the natural parents are the indispensable parties to the
suit for damages.

Supreme Court held that parental authority had not been retroactively transferred to and vested in the
adopting parents, at the time the shooting happened. It do not consider that retroactive effect may be
given to the decree of the adoption so as to impose a liability upon the adopting parents accruing at the
time when adopting parents had no actual custody over the adopted child. Retroactive affect may be
essential if it permit the accrual of some benefit or advantage in favor of the adopted child.

St. Mary’s Academy v. Carpitanos

GR No. 143363, 6 February 2002

FACTS:

Herein petitioner conducted an enrollment drive for the school year 1995-1996 They visited schools
from where prospective enrollees were studying. Sherwin Carpitanos joined the campaign. Along with
the other high school students, they rode a Mitsubishi jeep owned by Vivencio Villanueva on their way
to Larayan Elementary School. Such jeep was driven by James Daniel II, a 15 year old student of the
same school. It was alleged that he drove the jeep in a reckless manner which resulted for it to turned
turtle. Sherwin died due to this accident. Spouses William Carpitanos and Lucia Carpitanos filed a case
against James Daniel II and his parents, James Daniel Sr. and Guada Daniel, the vehicle owner, Vivencio
Villanueva and St. Marys Academy

ISSUE:

Whether or not petitioner should be held liable for the damages.

RULING:
No. 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.

The CA held petitioner liable for the death of Sherwin under Article 218 and 219 of the Family Code
where it was pointed that they were negligent in allowing a minor to drive and not having a teacher
accompany the minor students in the jeep. However, for petitioner to be liable, there must be a finding
that the act or omission considered as negligent was the proximate cause of the injury caused because
the negligence must have a causal connection to the accident. In order that there may be a recovery for
an injury, however, 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. In other words, the
negligence must be the proximate cause of the injury. For, negligence, no matter in what it consists,
cannot create a right of action unless it is the proximate cause of the injury complained of. And the
proximate cause of an injury 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, the respondents failed to show that the negligence of petitioner was the proximate cause of
the death of the victim. Also, there was no evidence that petitioner school allowed the minor to drive
the jeep of respondent Vivencio Villanueva. Hence, the registered owner of any vehicle, even if not used
for public service, would primarily be responsible to the public or to 3rd persons for injuries caused
while it is being driven on the road. It is not the school, but the registered owner of the vehicle who shall
be held responsible for damages for the death of Sherwin. Wherefore, the case was remanded to the
trial court for determination of the liability of the defendants excluding herein petitioner.

DRA. DELA LLANA vs. BIONG

Facts:

On March 2000, Juan dela Llana was driving along Quezon. Her sister, Dra. dela Llana was seated at the
front passenger seat. Juan stopped the car accross the Veterans Memorial Hospital when the signal light
turned red. A few seconds after the car halted, a dump truck containing gravel and sand suddenly
rammed the car’s rear end, violently pushing the car forward. Due to the impact, the car’s rear end
collapsed and its rear windshield was shattered. Glass splinters flew, puncturing Dra. dela Llana. Apart
from these minor wounds, Dra. dela Llana did not appear to have suffered from any other visible
physical injuries. The traffic investigation report identified the truck driver as Joel Primero. It stated that
Joel was recklessly imprudent in driving the truck. oel later revealed that his employer was respondent
Rebecca Biong. As the days passed by, Dra. dela Llana suffered from a whiplash injury, Dr. Milla required
her to undergo physical therapy to alleviate her condition. Dra. dela Llana’s condition did not improve
despite three months of extensive physical therapy. Dr. Flores, a neuro-surgeon, finally suggested that
she undergo a cervical spine surgery to release the compression of her nerve. On October 19, 2000, Dr.
Flores operated on her spine and neck, between the C5 and the C6 vertebrae. Dra. dela Llana, on
October 16, 2000, demanded from Rebecca compensation for her injuries, but Rebecca refused to pay.

May 8, 2001, Dra. dela Llana sued Rebecca for damages against Biong. She alleged that she lost the
mobility of her arm as a result of the vehicular accident and claimed P150,000.00 for her medical
expenses (as of the filing of the complaint) and an average monthly income of P30,000.00 since June
2000. She further prayed for actual, moral, and exemplary damages as well as attorney’s fees. In
defense, Rebecca maintained that Dra. dela Llana had no cause of action against her as no reasonable
relation existed between the vehicular accident and Dra. dela Llana’s injury. She pointed out that Dra.
dela Llana’s illness became manifest one month and one week from the date of the vehicular accident.
Biong testified that Dra. dela Llana was physically fit and strong when they met several days after the
vehicular accident. She also asserted that she observed the diligence of a good father of a family in the
selection and supervision of Joel. She pointed out that she required Joel to submit a certification of good
moral character as well as barangay, police, and NBI clearances prior to his employment. She also
stressed that she only hired Primero after he successfully passed the driving skills test conducted by
Alberto Marcelo, a licensed driver-mechanic.

The RTC ruled in favor of Dra. dela Llana and held that the proximate cause of Dra. dela Llana’s whiplash
injury to be Joel’s reckless driving. But CA reversed RTC ruling

Issue: whether Joel’s reckless driving is the proximate cause of Dra. dela Llana’s whiplash injury

Held: Article 2176 of the Civil Code provides that "[w]hoever 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 a quasi-delict." Under this
provision, the elements necessary to establish a quasi-delict case are:

(1) damages to the plaintiff;


(2) negligence, by act or omission, of the defendant or by some person for whose acts the defendant
must respond, was guilty; and

(3) the connection of cause and effect between such negligence and the damages.

These elements show that the source of obligation in a quasi-delict case is the breach or omission of
mutual duties that civilized society imposes upon its members, or which arise from non-contractual
relations of certain members of society to others.

Based on these requisites, Dra. dela Llana must first establish by preponderance of evidence the three
elements of quasi-delict before we determine Rebecca’s liability as Joel’s employer. She should show the
chain of causation between Joel’s reckless driving and her whiplash injury. Only after she has laid this
foundation can the presumption - that Rebecca did not exercise the diligence of a good father of a
family in the selection and supervision of Joel - arise. Once negligence, the damages and the proximate
causation are established, this Court can then proceed with the application and the interpretation of the
fifth paragraph of Article 2180 of the Civil Code.

Cangco v. Manila Railroad Co.

G.R. No. L-12191, 14 October 1918

FACTS:

Jose Cangco was in the employment of Manila Railroad Company. He lived in the pueblo of San Mateo,
in the province of Rizal, which is 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.

During his ride in the train he arose from his seat and makes his way to the exit while the train is still on
travel. When the train has proceeded a little farther Jose Cangco step down into the cement platform
but unfortunately step in to a sack of watermelon, fell down and rolled under the platform and was
drawn under the moving car which resulting to his arm to be crashed and lacerated. He was rushed to
the hospital and sued the company and the employee who put the sack of watermelon in the platform.
The accident occurred between 7 and 8 o’ clock on the dark night. It is that time of the year that may we
considered as season to harvest watermelon explaining why there are sacks of watermelon in the
platform. The plaintiff contends that it is the negligence of the Manila Railroad Co. on why they let their
employees put a hindrance in the platform that may cause serious accident. The defendant answered
that it is the lack of diligence on behalf of the plaintiff alone on why he did not wait for the train to stop
before alighting the train.

ISSUE:

Whether or not the company is liable or there is a contributory negligence on behalf of the plaintiff.

RULING:

There is no contributory negligence on behalf of the plaintiff. The Supreme Court provides some test
that may find the contributory negligence of a person. Was there anything in the circumstances
surrounding the plaintiff at the time he alighted from the train which would have admonished a person
of average prudence that to get off the train under the conditions then existing was dangerous? If so,
the plaintiff should have desisted from alighting; and his failure so to desist was contributory negligence.

Alighting from a moving train while it is slowing down is a common practice and a lot of people are
doing so every day without suffering injury. Cangco has 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. He was also ignorant of the fact that sacks of watermelons were there
as there were no appropriate warnings and the place was dimly lit.

Article 1173, first paragraph: The fault or negligence of the obligor consists in the omission of that
diligence which is required by the nature of the obligation and corresponds with the circumstances of
that persons, of the time and of the place. When negligence shows bad faith, the provisions of Article
1171 and 2201, paragraph 2, shall apply.

In the case the proximate cause of the accident is the lack of diligence of the company to inform their
employees to not put any hindrance in the platform like sacks of watermelon. The contract of defendant
to transport plaintiff carried with it, by implication, the duty to carry him in safety and to provide safe
means of entering and leaving its trains (civil code, article 1258). That duty, being contractual, was direct
and immediate, and its non-performance could not be excused by proof that the fault was morally
imputable to defendant’s servants. Therefore, the company is liable for damages against Cangco.

CASTILEX INDUSTRIAL CORPORATION, petitioner, vs. VICENTE VASQUEZ, JR. and LUISA SO VASQUEZ, and
CEBU DOCTORS' HOSPITAL, INC.,respondents.

FACTS:

At around 1:30 to 2:00 in the morning, Romeo So Vasquez (son of respondents Vicente and Luisa
Vasquez), was driving a Honda motorcycle around Fuente Osmeña 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.

Benjamin ABAD was a manager of petitioner CASTILEX Industrial Corporation, registered owner of a
Toyota Hi-Lux Pick-up with plate no. GBW-794. ABAD drove the said company car out of a parking lot
but instead of going around the Osmeña rotunda he made a short cut against [the] flow of the traffic in
proceeding to his route to General Maxilom 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 brought Vasquez to CEBU DOCTORS' HOSPITAL where he died.

A Criminal Case was filed against ABAD but which was subsequently dismissed for failure to prosecute.
An action for damages was then commenced by respondents against ABAD and petitioner CASTILEX

Trial court ruled in favor of private respondents and ordered ABAD and to pay jointly and solidarily
respondents

Petitioner CASTILEX and ABAD separately appealed the decision.

Court of Appeals affirmed the ruling of the trial court holding ABAD and petitioner CASTILEX liable but
held that the liability of the latter is "only vicarious and not solidary" with the former.
Hence, CASTILEX filed the instant petition.

ISSUE:

Whether an employer may be held vicariously liable for the death resulting from the negligent operation
by a managerial employee of a company-issued vehicle

RULING:

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

- SC: 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

o DISTINCTION between 4th and 5th paragraph of Art 2180 of CC:

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

o 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 employer-employee 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

Whether the private respondents have sufficiently established that ABAD was acting within the scope of
his assigned tasks.

- ABAD: 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.

- TC and CA: 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.

- SC: do not agree with TC and CA. 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.

- 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:

o 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

o 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

o 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

o 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, the employee has left the direct route to his work or back home and is
pursuing a personal errand of his own.
o 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

o 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

- In the case, it is undisputed that ABAD did some overtime work at the petitioner's office. After,
he went to Goldie's Restaurant in Fuente Osmeña, 7km away from petitioner's place of business. A
witness for the private respondents, a sidewalk vendor, testified that Fuente Osmeña is a "lively place"
even at dawn because Goldie's Restaurant and Back Street were still open and people were drinking
thereat. Moreover, prostitutes, pimps, and drug addicts littered the place.

- At the Goldie's Restaurant, ABAD took some snacks and had a chat with friends. It was when
ABAD was leaving the restaurant that the incident in question occurred

- 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. of 28 August 1988,
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

- Since no evidence that ABAD was acting within the scope of the functions entrusted to him,
petitioner CASTILEX had no duty to show that it exercised the diligence of a good father of a family in
providing ABAD with a service vehicle. Thus, petitioner is relieved of vicarious liability for the
consequences of the negligence of ABAD in driving its vehicle

. Bahia v. Litonjua 30 Phil 624

Torts and Damages – Due Diligence as a Defense

On May 14, 1911, Leynes rented a car from International Garage owned and operated by Ramirez. As
per the arrangement, Ramirez would also provide for the driver and a machinist. Leynes was to used the
car to transport people from fiesta for profit. The car was actually brand new and was only used a few
hours. On May 16, 2011, while driven on the road, the automobile, by reason of a defect in the steering
gear, refused to obey the direction of the driver in turning a corner in the streets, and, as a
consequence, ran across the street and into the wall of a house against which the daughter of Bahia was
leaning at the time. The front of the machine struck the child in the center of the body and crushed her
to death.

ISSUE: Whether or not Leynes is liable in the case at bar.

HELD: No. While it may be said that, at the time of the accident, the chauffeur who was driving the
machine was a servant of Leynes, in as much as the profits derived from the trips of the automobile
belonged to him and the automobile was operated under his direction, nevertheless, this fact is not
conclusive in making him responsible for the negligence of the chauffeur or for defects in the
automobile itself. Article 1903 of the Civil Code not only establishes liability in cases of negligence, but
also provides when that liability shall cease. It says:

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 damages.

From this article two things are apparent: (1) That when an injury is caused by the negligence of a
servant or employee there instantly arises a presumption of a 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.

As to selection, Leynes has clearly shown that he exercised the care and diligence of a good father of a
family. He obtained the machine from a reputable garage and it was, so far as appeared, in good
condition. The workmen were likewise selected from a standard garage, were duly licensed by the
Government in their particular calling, and apparently thoroughly competent. The car had been used but
a few hours when the accident occurred and it is clear from the evidence that Leynes had no notice,
either actual or constructive, of the defective condition of the steering gear.
While it does not appear that Leynes formulated rules and regulations for the guidance of the drivers
and gave them proper instructions, designed for the protection of the public and the passengers, the
evidence shows that the death of the child was not caused by a failure to promulgate rules and
regulations. It was caused by a defect in the car as to which Leynes has shown himself free from
responsibility.

Philippine Rabbit Bus Lines v. Phil-American Forwarders

PHILIPPINE RABBIT BUS LINES and FELIX PANGALANGAN v. PHIL-AMERICAN FORWARDERS, ARCHIMEDES
BALINGIT, and FERNANDO PINEDA

1975 / Aquino / Appeal from CFI order

FACTS

Pineda recklessly drove a freight truck [owned by Phil-American Forwarders] along the national highway
at Pampanga, and the truck bumped the PRBL bus driven by Pangalangan. As a result, Pangalangan
suffered injuries and the bus was damaged and could not be used for 79 days, thus depriving PRBL of
earnings amounting to P8,665.51. Balingit was the manager of Phil-American Forwarders.

PRBL and Pangalangan filed a complaint for damages against Phil-American Forwarders, Balingit, and
Pineda. Defendants said Balingit was not Pineda’s employer. Balingit moved that the complaint against
him be dismissed on the ground that PRBL and Pangalangan had no cause of action against him. CFI
dismissed the complaint against Balingit, on the ground that he is not the manager of an establishment
as contemplated in NCC 2180.

ISSUE AND HOLDING

WON the terms “employers” and “owners and managers of an establishment or enterprise” embrace
the manager of a corporation owning a truck, the reckless operation of which allegedly resulted in the
vehicular accident from which the damage arose. NO.

RATIO

Those terms do not include the manager of a corporation. It may be gathered from the context of NCC
2180 that the term “manager” (“director” in the Spanish version) is used in the sense of “employer”.
Hence, no tortious or quasi-delictual liability can be imposed on Balingit as manager of Phil-American
Forwarders, in connection with the vehicular accident in question, because he himself may be regarded
as an employee or dependiente of Phil-American Forwarders.

CFI AFFIRMED

ERNESTO MARTIN V. CA AND MERALCO


G.R. No. 82248 January 30, 1992

FACTS:

Ernesto Martin was the owner of a private car bearing license plate No. NPA-930. At around 2 o’clock in
the morning of May 11, 1982, while being driven by Nestor Martin, it crashed into a Meralco electric
post on Valley Golf Road, in Antipolo, Rizal. The car was wrecked and the pole severely damaged.
Meralco subsequently demanded reparation from Ernesto Martin, but the demand was rejected. It
thereupon sued him for damages in the Regional Trial Court of Pasig, alleging that he was liable to it as
the employer of Nestor Martin. The petitioner’s main defense was that Nestor Martin was not his
employee. Meralco did not present any evidence to prove that Nestor Martin was the employee of
Ernesto Martin and Ernesto Martin did not rebut such allegation.

ISSUE:

WON Ernesto Martin can be held liable.

HELD:

NO. Meralco had the burden of proof, or the duty “to present evidence on the fact in issue necessary to
establish his claim” as required by Rule 131, Section 1 of the Revised Rules of Court. Failure to do this
was fatal to its action. As the employment relationship between Ernesto Martin and Nestor Martin could
not be presumed, it was necessary for the plaintiff to establish it by evidence. It was enough for the
defendant to deny the alleged employment relationship, without more, for he was not under obligation
to prove this negative averment. This Court has consistently applied the rule that “if the plaintiff, upon
whom rests the burden of proving his cause of action, fails to show in a satisfactory manner the facts
upon which he bases his claim, the defendant is under no obligation to prove his exception or defense.”

Petition was granted.