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Aranete v. Joya L-25172. May 24, 1974 Ponente: Castro Facts: Sometime in November 1952 Antonio R.

de Joya, then general manager of the Ace Advertising, proposed to the board of directors that an employee, Ricardo Taylor, be sent to the United States to take up special studies in television. The board, however, failed to act on the proposal but de Joya, in September 1953, still sent Taylor abroad. J. Antonio Araneta, a company director, inquired about the trip and was assured by de Joya that Taylor's expenses would be defrayed not by the company but by other parties. While abroad, from September 1, 1953 to March 15, 1954, Taylor continues to receive his salaries and checks (P5,043.20) disbursed by Ace Advertising on account of Taylors travel and studies were signed by Luis Araneta or de Joya or Vicente Araneta, the company treasurer. On August 23, 1954 the Ace Advertising filed a complaint against de Joya for recovery of the total sum disbursed to Taylor, alleging that the trip was made without its knowledge, authority or ratification. However, de Joya denied the charge and claimed that the trip was ratified by the companys board of directors and that as general manager he has the discretion to authorize the said trip. De Joya also filed a third party complaint against Vicente Araneta, Luis Araneta and Ricardo Taylor. On April 12, 1964, the trial court ordered de Joya to pay Ace Advertising P5,043.20 plus legal interest until full payment and dismissed the third party complaint. De Joya appealed but the Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment in favor of Ace Advertising by reversed the dismissal of the third party complaint; hence, this appeal. Issue: Whether Luis Araneta was guilty of a quasi-delict. Held: Yes. Luis assertion that he signed the questione d payroll checks in good faith has not been substantiated since he failed to testify to prove such claim. Upon the contrary, in spite of his being a vicepresident and director of the Ace Advertising, Luis remained passive, throughout the period of Taylor's stay abroad, concerning the unauthorized disbursements of corporate funds for the latter. His approval of Taylors payroll checks thrice demonstrated that he neglected to perform his duties properly, to the damage of the firm of which he was an officer. The fact that he was occupying a contractual position at the Ace Advertising is of no moment. The existence of a contract between the parties constitutes no bar to the commission of a tort by one against the other and the consequent recovery of damages. ***** Lao v. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 82808 July 11, 1991 Ponente: Grio-Aquino Facts: Dennis Lao was an employee of the New St. Joseph Lumber & Hardware Supply (St. Joseph Lumber) owned by Chan Tong. In January
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1981, St. Joseph Lumber filed a collection suit against a customer, Benjamin Espiritu, for unpaid purchases of construction materials from St. Joseph Lumber. In November 1981, upon the advice of its lawyer, St. Joseph Lumber filed a criminal complaint for estafa against Espiritu, based on the same transaction. Since Lao was the employee who transacted business with Espiritu, he was directed by his employer, Chan Tong, to sign the affidavit or complaint prepared by the firm's, lawyer, Attorney Manuel Querubin. Finding probable cause after conducting a preliminary

investigation of the charge, the investigating fiscal filed an information for estafa in the Court of First Instance of Quezon City against Espiritu. The case was however later dismissed because the court believed that Espiritu's liability was only civil, not criminal. On April 12, 1984, Espiritu filed a complaint for malicious prosecution against the petitioner and St. Joseph Lumber, praying that the defendants be ordered to pay him P500,000 as moral damages, P10,000 as actual damages, and P100,000 as attorney's fees. On January 22, 1985, the trial court ruled in favor of Espiritu and held Lao and St. Joseph Lumber jointly and severally liable against Espiritu. Lao appealed but the appellate court dismissed his appeal; hence, this petition for certiorari. Issue: Whether Lao should be liable for damages based on malicious prosecution. Held: No. In the case of Ferrer v. Vergara, the Court held that in order to maintain an action for damages based on malicious prosecution, three elements must be present: First, the fact of the prosecution and the further fact that the defendant was himself the prosecutor, and that the action was finally terminated with an acquittal; second, that in bringing the action, the prosecutor acted without probable cause; and third, the prosecutor was actuated or impelled by legal malice. In the case at bar, Lao was only a witness, not the prosecutor in the estafa case. The prosecutor was his employer, Chan Tong or the St. Joseph Lumber. Second, there was probable cause for the charge of estafa against Espiritu, as found and certified by the investigating fiscal himself. Third, Lao was not motivated by malice in making the affidavit upon which the fiscal based the filing of the information against Espiritu because he executed it as an employee, a salesman of the St. Joseph Lumber from whom Espiritu made his purchases of construction materials and who, therefore, had personal knowledge of the transaction. Although the prosecution of Espiritu for estafa did not prosper, the unsuccessful prosecution may not be labelled as malicious. Notes: -

Lao had a valid defense to the action for malicious prosecution (Civil Case No. 84-M) because it was his employer, St. Joseph Lumber, not himself, that was the complainant in the estafa case against Espiritu. It was Chan Tong, the owner of the St. Joseph Lumber, who, upon advice of his counsel, filed the criminal complaint against Espiritu. Lao was only a witness in the case. He had no personal interest in the prosecution of Espiritu for he was not the party defrauded by Espiritu. He
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executed the affidavit which was used as basis of the criminal charge against Espiritu because he was the salesman who sold the construction materials to Espiritu. He was only an agent of St. Joseph Lumber, hence, not personally liable to the party with whom he contracted (Art. 1897, Civil Code; Philippine Products Co. vs. Primateria Societe Anonyme, 122 Phil. 698).
***** Que v. Intermediae Appellate Court L-66865. January 13, 1989 Ponente: Cruz Facts: In July and August of 1975, Antonio Nicolas ordered from Magtanggol Que certain amounts of canvass strollers which were delivered to and accepted by Nicolas, who issued five checks therefore to Que. The total face value of the checks was P7,600.00. Subsequently, Nicolas ordered a stop payment so Que was unable to encash them. Nicolas explained that he stopped the payment of the checks because of defects in the articles sold which Que did not correct despite the formers request. However, Que argued that the allegedly defective articles were never returned to him until after he had filed the charge for estafa and that Nicolas had earlier merely ignored his complaints about the dishonored checks. The complaint for estafa against Nicolas was dismissed for lack of merit, the investigating fiscal holding that the controversy was an accounting matter that did not necessarily involve deceit on the part of Nicolas. Subsequently, Nicolas filed his own complaint for damages against Que for his malicious prosecution in the Court of First Instance of Bulacan. In turn, Que's filed a counterclaim alleging that Nicolas had maliciously filed the complaint in Bulacan although he was a resident of Caloocan City; that the private respondent was really indebted to him in any 4 case; and that it was he who had suffered damages as a result of the unwarranted suit. Issues: 1. 2. Whether Que instituted a malicious prosecution against Nicolas Who between Que and Nicolas may claim for damages?


None. In the exercise of its discretion, the Court denies both parties their respective claims for damages and holds that each of them must bear the financial consequences of his own acts. In the view of the Court, the acts of Que and Nicolas have been far from exemplary. Que could have exercised a little more diligence in ascertaining the facts before filing the criminal complaint in the fiscal's office and provoking all this legal conflict. Nicolas, on the other hand, exhibited an undue belligerence that naturally excited the suspicions of the petitioner and later exacerbated their relations when he filed his own complaint in Bulacan instead of Caloocan City.

Notes: Probable cause is the existence of such facts and circumstances as would excite the belief, in a reasonable mind, acting on the facts within the knowledge of the prosecutor, that the person charged was guilty of the crime for which be was prosecuted. The presence of probable cause signifies as a legal consequence the absence of malice. To constitute malicious prosecution, there must be proof that the prosecution was prompted by a sinister design to vex and humiliate a person that it was initiated deliberately by the defendant knowing that his charges were false and groundless. Concededly, the mere act of submitting a case to the authorities for prosecution does not make one liable for malicious prosecution. In a free society, controversies are heard and settled under the rule of law in the forum of the courts of justice. It is one of the virtues of our system of government that if a person feels he has been aggrieved, he does not have to take the law into his hands or resort to the use of force for the vindication of his injury. The courts are there to hear and act on his complaint. The right to litigate is an escape valve to relieve the pressures of personal disagreements that might otherwise explode in physical confrontation, It is necessary not only for upholding one's claims when they are unjustly denied but also for the maintenance of peace if not goodwill among incipient antagonists. Without the right to litigate, conflicting claims cannot be examined and resolved in accordance with one of the primary purposes of government, which is to provide for a just and orderly society. ***** Drilon v. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 107019. March 20, 1997 Ponente: Hermosisima, Jr. Facts: On April 17, 1990, a Resolution was released by the panel of investigators composed of prosecutors George Arizala, Ferdinand Abesamis and Cesar Solis from the Department of Justice holding that several individuals including Homobono Adaza liable for the crime of Rebellion with murder and frustrated murder in relation to an alleged participation in a failed December 1989 coup detat. Based on the said resolution, an Information, dated April 18, 1990, charging Adaza with the crime of rebellion with murder and frustrated murder was filed in the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. Feeling aggrieved by the institution of the said proceeding, Adaza filed a complaint for damages alleging that the petitioners were engaging in a deliberate, willful and

Held: 1. No. In Buchanan v. Esteban, the Court held that "one cannot be held liable in damages for maliciously instituting a prosecution where he acted with probable cause." The presence of probable cause signifies as a legal consequence the absence of malice. In the case at bar, Que was not motivated by ill feeling but only by an anxiety to protect his his rights when he filed the criminal complaint for estafa with the fiscal's office. If he averred that Nicolas had no funds in the bank when he issued the postdated checks and intended to cheat the payee, it was because the circumstances of the case as Que saw them led him to this conclusion. Even if the fiscal found that no deceit was involved and that the petitioner's claim was unfounded, the mistaken charge was nonetheless, in the legal sense, not malicious.

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malicious experimentation by filing the said charge when they were fully aware of the non-existence of such crime in the statute books. Petitioners filed a Motion to Dismiss the complaint stating that it does not state an actionable wrong constituting a valid cause of action but it was denied. Petitioners filed a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 with the Court of Appeals but it was denied; hence, this petition for review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. Issue: Whether the information against Adaza is a suit for malicious prosecution Held: No. In order for a malicious prosecution suit to prosper, the plaintiff must prove three (3) elements: (1) the fact of the prosecution and the further fact that the defendant was himself the prosecutor and that the action finally terminated with an acquittal; (2) that in bringing the action, the prosecutor acted without probable cause; and (3) that the prosecutor was actuated or impelled by legal malice, that is by improper or sinister motive. All these requisites must concur. Judging from the face of the complaint filed by Adaza against the petitioners, none of the foregoing requisites have been alleged therein, thus rendering the complaint dismissible on the ground of failure to state a cause of action under Section 1 (g), Rule 16 of the Revised Rules of Court. Notes: - When a party adopts a certain theory in the court below, he will not be permitted to change his theory on appeal, for to permit him to do so would not only be unfair to the other party but it would also be offensive to the basic rules of fair play, justice and due process - Malicious prosecution o American jurisdiction: One begun in malice without probable cause to believe the charges can be sustained (Eustace v. Dechter, 28 Cal. App. 2d. 706,83 P. 2d. 525). Instituted with intention of injuring defendant and without probable cause, and which terminates in favor of the person prosecuted. For this injury an action on the case lies, called the action of malicious prosecution (Hicks v. Brantley, 29 S.E. 459, 102 Ga. 264; Eggett v. Allen, 96 N.W. 803, 119 Wis. 625). o Philippine jurisdiction: An action for damages brought by one against whom a criminal prosecution, civil suit, or other legal proceeding has been instituted maliciously and without probable cause, after the termination of such prosecution, suit, or other proceeding in favor of the defendant therein. The gist of the action is the putting of legal process in force, regularly, for the mere purpose of vexation or injury (Cabasaan v. Anota, 14169-R, November 19, 1956). o The statutory basis for a civil action for damages for malicious prosecution are found in the provisions of the New Civil Code on Human Relations and on damages particularly Articles 19, 20, 21, 26, 29, 32, 33, 35, 2217 and 2219 (8) o To constitute malicious prosecution, however, there must be proof that the prosecution was prompted by a sinister design to vex and humiliate a person, and that it was initiated deliberately by the defendant knowing that his charges were false and groundless. Concededly, the mere act of submitting a case to the authorities for prosecution does not make one liable for malicious prosecution.
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A suit for malicious prosecution will lie only in cases where a legal prosecution has been carried on without probable cause. The reason for this rule is that it would be a very great discouragement to public justice, if prosecutors, who had tolerable ground of suspicion, were liable to be sued at law when their indictment miscarried.

A doubtful or difficult question of law may become the basis of good faith and, in this regard, the law always accords to public officials the presumption of good faith and regularity in the performance of official duties.[31] Any person who seeks to establish otherwise has the burden of proving bad faith or illmotive. ***** Patricio v. Leviste G.R. No. L51832.April 26, 1989

Ponente: Padilla Facts: On May 16, 1976 at about 10:00 p.m., while a benefit dance was ongoing during the town fiesta, Rafael Patricio, an ordained Catholic priest and the appointed Director General of the 1976 Religious and Municipal Town Fiesta of Pilar, Capiz, together with two policemen were posted near the gate of the public auditorium to check on the assigned watchers of the gate. Bienvenido Bacalocos, President of the Association of Barangay Captains of Pilar, Capiz and a member of the Sangguniang Bayan, who was in a state of drunkenness and standing near the same gate together with his companions, struck a bottle of beer on the table causing an injury on his hand which started to bleed. Then, he approached Patricio in a hostile manner and asked the latter if he had seen his wounded hand, and before Patricio could respond, Bacalocos, without provocation, hit Patricio's face with his bloodied hand. As a consequence, a commotion ensued and Bacalocos was brought by the policemen to the municipal building. As a result of the incident, a criminal complaint for "Slander by Deed was filed by Patricio but it was dismissed. Subsequently, a complaint for damages was filed by Patricio with the court a quo. On April 18, 1978, the court ruled in favor of Patricio and held Bacalocos liable for moral and exemplary damages. On June 9, 1978, Patricio filed a motion for execution of judgment but it was denied on the ground of a pending motion for reconsideration filed by Bacalocos. On August 3, 1979, the court a quo dismissed Patricios complaint; hence, this petition for review on certiorari. Issue: Whether Patricio should be entitled to moral damages. Held: Yes. Articles 2217 and 2219 provide the instances where moral damages can be awarded. Bacalocos contention that there was no bad faith on his part in slapping Patricio on the face and that the incident was merely accidental is not tenable because it was established before the court a quo that there was an existing feud between the families of Patricio and Bacalocos and that the latter slapped the petitioner without provocation in the presence of several persons. Further, the act of Bacalocos in hitting Patricio on the face is contrary to morals
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and good customs and caused the petitioner mental anguish, moral shock, wounded feelings and social humiliation. Therefore, Bacalocos has to take full responsibility for his act and his claim that he was unaware of what he had done to petitioner because of drunkenness is definitely no excuse and does not relieve him of his liability to the latter.

saying that he just heard the rumor from a relative. Thereafter, however, Rodrigo called Florence over the telephone reiterating his accusation and threatening her that should something happen to his sick mother, in case the latter learned about the affair, he would kill Florence. As a result of this incident, Nestor Nicolas felt extreme

Finally, the fact that no actual or compensatory damage was proven before the trial court, does not adversely affect petitioner's right to recover moral damages. Moral damages may be awarded in appropriate cases referred to in the chapter on human relations of the Civil Code (Articles 19 to 36), without need of proof that the wrongful act complained of had caused any physical injury upon the complainant. Notes: There is no question that moral damages may be recovered in cases where a defendant's wrongful act or omission has caused the complainant physical suffering, mental anguish, fright, serious anxiety, besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, moral shock, social humiliation and similar injury. An award of moral damages is allowed in cases specified or analogous to those provided in Article 2219 of the Civil Code, to wit:

embarrassment and shame to the extent that he could no longer face his neighbors. Florence Concepcion also ceased to do business with him by not contributing capital anymore so much so that the business venture of the Nicolas spouses declined as they could no longer cope with their commitments to their clients and customers. To make matters worse, Allem Nicolas started to doubt Nestor's fidelity resulting in frequent bickerings and quarrels during which Allem even expressed her desire to leave her husband. Consequently, Nestor was forced to write Rodrigo demanding public apology and payment of damages. Rodrigo pointedly ignored the demand, for which reason the Nicolas spouses filed a civil suit against him for damages. After trial, the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City ordered Rodrigo Concepcion to pay Nicolas spouses moral and exemplary damages plus attorneys fees and cost of suit. On appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the said decision; hence, this petition for review on certiorari. Issue: Whether there is legal basis for the award of damages to the Nicolas spouses. Held: Yes. The incident charged of Rodrigo was no less than an invasion on the right of Nestor as a person. The Code Commission stressed in no uncertain terms that the human personality must be exalted. The sacredness of human personality is a concomitant consideration of every plan for human amelioration. The touchstone of every system of law, of the culture and civilization of every country, is how far it dignifies man. If the statutes insufficiently protect a person from being unjustly humiliated, then the laws are indeed defective. Thus, under article 26, the rights of persons are amply protected, and damages are provided for violations of a person's dignity, personality, privacy and peace of mind. The violations mentioned in articles 26 and 2219 are not exclusive but are merely examples and do not preclude other similar or analogous acts. Damages therefore are allowable for actions against a person's dignity, such as profane, insulting, humiliating, scandalous or abusive language. Under Art. 2217 of the Civil Code, moral damages which include physical suffering, mental anguish, fright, serious anxiety, besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, moral shock, social humiliation, and similar injury, although incapable of pecuniary computation, may be recovered if they are the proximate result of the defendant's wrongful act or omission. Notes: Rodriguez Concepcion shouted, "Hoy Nestor, kabit ka ni Bing! . . . Binigyan ka pa pala ni Bing Concepcion ng P100,000.00 para umakyat ng Baguio. Pagkaakyat mo at ng asawa mo doon ay bababa ka uli para magkasarilinan kayo ni Bing." Supreme Courts jurisdiction in a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Revised Rules of Court is limited to reviewing only errors of law, not of fact, unless the
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Exemplary damages are required by public policy to suppress the wanton acts of the offender. They are an antidote so that the poison of wickedness may not run through the body politic. The amount of exemplary damages need not be proved where it is shown that plaintiff is entitled to either moral, temperate or compensatory damages, as the case may be, although such award cannot be recovered as a matter of right. In cases where exemplary damages are awarded to the injured party, attorney's fees are also recoverable. ***** Concepcion v. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 120706. January 31, 2000

ART. 2219. Moral damages may be recovered in the following and analogous cases (1) A criminal offense resulting in physical injuries; (2) Quasi-delicts causing physical injuries; (3) Seduction, abduction, rape, or other lascivious acts. (4) Adultery or concubinage; (5) Illegal or arbitrary detention or arrest; (6) Illegal search; (7) Libel, slander or any other form of defamation; (8) Malicious prosecution; (9) Acts mentioned in article 309; (10) Acts and actions referred to in articles 21, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34, and 35.

Ponente: Bellosillo Facts: Sometime in the second week of July 1985, Rodrigo Concepcion, brother of the deceased husband of Florence Concepcion, angrily accosted Nestor Nicolas at the latter's apartment and accused him of conducting an adulterous relationship with Florence. To clarify matters, Nestor went with Rodrigo, upon the latter's dare, to see some relatives of the Concepcion family who allegedly knew about the relationship. However, those whom they were able to see denied knowledge of the alleged affair. The same accusation was hurled by Rodrigo against Nestor when the two confronted Florence at the terrace of her residence. Florence denied the imputations and Rodrigo backtracked
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factual findings complained of are devoid of support by the evidence on record or the assailed judgment is based on misapprehension of facts. The reason behind this is that the Supreme Court respects the findings of the trial court on the issue of credibility of witnesses, considering that it is in a better position to decide the question, having heard the witnesses themselves and observed their deportment and manner of testifying during the trial.Thus it accords the highest respect, even finality, to the evaluation made by the lower court of the testimonies of the witnesses presented before it. When the issue is on the credibility of witnesses, appellate courts will not generally disturb the findings of the trial court; however, its factual findings may nonetheless be reversed if by the evidence on record or lack of it, it appears that the trial court erred.6 In this respect, the Court is not generally inclined to review the findings of fact of the Court of Appeals unless its findings are erroneous, absurd, speculative, conjectural, conflicting, tainted with grave abuse of discretion, or contrary to the findings culled by the trial court of origin. The fact alone that the judge who heard the evidence was not the one who rendered the judgment but merely relied on the record of the case does not render his judgment erroneous or irregular. This is so even if the judge did not have the fullest opportunity to weigh the testimonies not having heard all the witnesses speak nor observed their deportment and manner of testifying. Thus the Court generally will not find any misapprehension of facts as it can be fairly assumed under the principle of regularity of performance of duties of public officers that the transcripts of stenographic notes were thoroughly scrutinized and evaluated by the judge himself. Minor inconsistencies even guarantee truthfulness and candor, for they erase any suspicion of a rehearsed testimony. Inconsistencies in the testimonies of witnesses with on minor details and collateral matters do not affect the substance of their testimonies ***** Amaro v. Sumanguit L-14986. July 31, 1962 Ponente: Makalintal Facts: On October 5, 1958 Jose Amaro was assaulted and shot at near the city government building of Silay. The following day he, together with his father, Cornelio Amaro, and his witnesses, went to the office of Ambrosio Sumanguit but instead of obtaining assistance to their complaint they were harassed and terrorized which caused them to give up and renounce their right and interest in the prosecution of the crime. Upon the advice of the City Mayor given to Sumanguit, an investigation (of said crime) was conducted and as a result the city attorney of Silay filed an information for illegal discharge of firearm against the assailant. After the investigation was finished, the Chief of Police harassed the plaintiffs in their daily work, ordered them thru his police to appear in his office when he is absent, and ordered the arrest of the plaintiffs to take their signatures in prepared affidavits which shall exempt the police from any dereliction of duty in their case against the perpetrator of the crime.
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Cornelio and Jose Amaro filed suit for damages based on articles 21 and/or 27 of the Civil Code. However, the complaint was dismissed on the ground that it does not state facts sufficient to constitute a cause of action. Issue: Whether the complaint state sufficient grounds to constitute an actionable delict. Held: Yes. The refusal of the Chief of Police to give complainants assistance, which was his duty to do as an officer of the law, constitutes an actionable dereliction on Sumanguit's part in the light of article 27 of the Civil Code. Amaros claim for relief is not based on the fact of harassment and terrorization but on Sumanguit's refusal to give them assistance, which was his duty to do as an officer of the law. The requirement under article 27 that such refusal must be "without just cause" is implicit in the context of the allegation. The statement of Sumanguit's dereliction is repeated in a subsequent paragraph of the complaint, where it is alleged that "he is about to order the arrest of the plaintiffs" to make them sign affidavits of exculpation in favor of the policemen. * THE ORDER APPEALED from is set aside and the case is remanded to the Court of origin for further proceedings. Costs against appellee. Notes: Rules require is that there be a showing by a statement of ultimate facts, that the plaintiff has a right and that such right has been violated by the defendant. An action should not be dismissed upon mere ambiguity, indefiniteness or uncertainty, for these are not grounds for a motion to dismiss, under Rule 8, but rather for a bill of particulars according to Rule 16. Moran, Comments on the Rules of Court, 1957 ed., Vol. I, p. 111. In two cases decided by this Court, it was observed: o Under the new Rules of Court, an action cannot be dismissed upon the ground that the complaint is vague, ambiguous, or indefinite (see Rule 8, section 1), because the defendant, in such case, may ask for more particulars (Rule 16) or he may compel the plaintiff to disclose more relevant facts under the different methods of discovery provided by the Rules. (Rules 18, 20, 21, 22 and 23.) Professor Sunderland once said "The real test of good pleading under the new rules is whether the information given is sufficient to enable the party to plead and prepare for trial. A legal conclusion may serve the purpose of pleading as well as anything else if it gives the proper information. If the party wants more he may ask for more details in regard to the particular matter that is stated too generally (Vol. XIII, Cincinnati Law Review, January 1939.) Co Tiamco vs. Diaz, 75 Phil. 672. o At any rate, if respondent's complaint, which was clear enough, had created confusion in petitioner's mind as to the foundation of her cause of action, then it should have moved for a more definite statement of the same before the trial. (De Leon Brokerage Co., Inc. vs. The Court of Appeals, et al., G.R. No. L-15247, Feb. 28, 1962.)