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MA. IMELDA M. MANOTOC vs. HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS [G.R. No. 130974. August 16, 2006.

FACTS: Based on paragraph two of the Complaint, the trial court issued a Summons addressed to petitioner at Alexandra Homes, E2 Room 104, at No. 29 Meralco Avenue, Pasig City. The Summons and a copy of the Complaint were allegedly served upon (Mr.) Macky de la Cruz, an alleged caretaker of petitioner at the condominium unit mentioned earlier. When petitioner failed to file her Answer, the trial court declared her in default. Petitioner, filed a Motion to Dismiss 6 on the ground of lack of jurisdiction of the trial court over her person due to an invalid substituted service of summons. Trial court rejected Manotocs Motion to Dismiss and relied on the presumption that the sheriffs substituted service was made in the regular performance of official duty, and such presumption stood in the absence of proof to the contrary.

ISSUE: Whether or not the Substituted service was valid.

HELD: NO. Requirements for Substituted Service, Section 8 of Rule 14 of the old Revised Rules of Court which applies to this case can be broken down to the following requirements: (1)Impossibility of Prompt Personal Service (2)Specific Details in the Return (3)A Person of Suitable Age and Discretion (4)A Competent Person in Charge A meticulous scrutiny of the aforementioned Return readily reveals the absence of material data on the serious efforts to serve the Summons on petitioner Manotoc in person. There is no clear valid reason cited in the Return why those efforts proved inadequate, to reach the conclusion that personal service has become impossible or unattainable outside the generally couched phrases of on many occasions several attempts were made to serve the summons . . . personally, at reasonable hours during the day, and to no avail for the reason that the said defendant is usually out of her place and/or residence or premises. Before resorting to substituted service, a plaintiff must demonstrate an effort in good faith to locate the defendant through more direct means. Respondent Trajano failed to demonstrate that there was strict compliance with the requirements of the then Section 8, Rule 14 (now Section 7, Rule 14 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure), the proceedings held before the trial court perforce must be annulled.

DOMAGAS vs. JENSEN GR 158407 158407 January 17,2005 Callejo, Sr. J.: FACTS: Petitioner Domagas filed for a forcible entry case against Jensen. Summons and complaint were not served on respondent because the latter was apparently out of the country but it was received by respondents brother Oscar who was then at the respondents house. The trial court rendered a decision in favor of petitioner. Respondent did not appeal. August 20, 2000, respondent filed a complaint against petitioner for the annulment of the decision of MTC since the service of summons was ineffective, the respondent being out of the country. The RTC decided in favor of Jensen since there was no valid service of the complaint and summons. The CA affirmed the decision, ruling that the case was an ejectment case which is an action quasi in rem.

ISSUE:

Whether or not the action of petitioner in the MTC against respondent is an action in personam or quasi in rem.

RULING:

The action of the petitioner fro forcible entry is a real action and one in personam. The settled rule is that the aim and object of an action determine its character. Whether a proceeding is in rem or in personam or in quasi in rem is determined by its nature and purpose, and by these only. A proceeding in personam is a proceeding to enforce personal rights and obligations brought against the person and is based on the jurisdiction of the person, although it may involve his right, or the exercise of ownership of, specific property, or seek to compel him to control or dispose of it in accordance with the mandate of the court. The purpose of a proceeding in personam is to impose, through the judgment of a court, some responsibility or liability directly upon the person of the defendant. Of this character are suits to compel a defendant to specifically perform some act or actions to fasten a pecuniary liability on him. An action in personam is said to be one which has for its object a judgment against a person, as distinguished from a judgment against the proprietary to determine its state Actions for recovery of real property are in personam.

v Actions quasi in rem deal with the status, ownership or liability of a particular property but which are intended to operate on these questions only as between the particular parties to the proceedings and not to ascertain or cut off the rights or interest of all possible claimants. The judgments therein are binding only upon the parties who joined in the action.

FILOMENA DOMAGAS, petitioner, vs. VIVIAN LAYNO JENSEN, respondent. January 17, 2005] Facts:

[G.R. No. 158407.

Filomena Domagas filed a complaint for forcible entry against respondent Vivian Jensen before the MTC of Calasiao, Pangasinan. The summons and the complaint were not served on the respondent because the latter was apparently out of the country. This was relayed to the Sheriff by her (the respondents) brother, Oscar Layno, who was then in the respondents house at No. 572 Barangay Buenlag, Calasiao, Pangasinan. The Sheriff left the summons and complaint with Oscar Layno, who received the same. Nonetheless, on May 17, 1999, the court rendered judgment ordering the respondent and all persons occupying the property for and in the latters behalf to vacate the disputed area and to pay monthly rentals therefor, including actual damages, attorneys fees, and exemplary damages. On August 16, 2000, the respondent filed a complaint against the petitioner before the RTC of Dagupan City for the annulment of the decision of the MTC, on the ground that due to the Sheriffs failure to serve the complaint and summons on her because she was in Oslo, Norway, the MTC never acquired jurisdiction over her person. The respondent further alleged that the MTC had no jurisdiction over the subject matter of the complaint because the petitioner the plaintiff therein, failed to show prior possession of the property. She further claimed that the alleged forcible entry was simply based on the result of the survey conducted by Geodetic Engineer. The petitioner assails the decision of the CA, alleging that the appellate court erred in holding that the respondents complaint for ejectment is an action quasi in rem. CA ruled that since the defendant therein was temporarily out of the country, the summons and the complaint should have been served via extraterritorial service under Section 15 in relation to Section 16, Rule 14 of the Rules of Court, which likewise requires prior leave of court. Considering that there was no prior leave of court and none of the modes of service prescribed by the Rules of Court was followed by the petitioner, the CA concluded that there was really no valid service of summons and complaint upon the respondent, the defendant in Civil Case. Hence, the petition. Issues: WON the petition for forcible entry is an action quasi in rem, thus the service of summons is proper.

Held: The Supreme Court ruled in denying the petition for lack of merit. It states that the action of the petitioner for forcible entry is a real action and one in personam. Thus, respondent was not validly served with summons and the complaint in Civil Case No. 879 on April 5, 1999, by substituted service, for the reason that she was not resident a resident of the Philippines, but that of Oslo, Norway. Also, the brother of the petitioner whom the summons was served was not a resident of the said address, thus, not a competent person to receive the summons.

UNITED COCONUT PLANTERS BANK, petitioner, vs. ROBERTO V. ONGPIN, respondent. [G.R. No. 146593. October 26, 2001] Facts: On November 17, 1994, Philippine Apparel, Inc. (PAI) entered into a credit agreement with petitioner United Coconut Planters Bank for a case-to-case credit line in the amount of US$500,000.00. Respondent Roberto V. Ongpin, then controlling stockholder of PAI, signed as surety, binding himself jointly and severally liable with PAI for the same amount. PAI availed of the credit line by drawing on short-term loans and opening letters of credit for the importation of goods, which amounted to US$650,986.34 or P16,526,653.00. As respondent failed to pay its obligations, petitioner filed a complaint against respondent with the RTC of Makati to enforce his obligation as surety of PAI. On November 10, 1995, the trial court issued an order granting petitioners prayer for the issuance of a writ of preliminary attachment. On November 16, 1995, a writ of attachment and a notice of garnishment were issued by the trial court, addressed to the president and corporate secretary of the Dominion Asian Equities garnishing 8,315,600 shares of stock belonging to respondent. Respondent, through making special appearances through counsel, moved the dismissal of the case and to quash the writ of attachment and garnishment on the ground that the trial court had no jurisdiction over the person of respondent, the summons prepared on October 30, 1995 having been unserved as of November 17, 1995. Being denied by the RTC, Respondent appealed to the CA. During the pendency of the appeal, petitioner filed with the trial court a Motion for Leave to Serve Summons through Publication. Its motion was granted, but the publication was held in abeyance on October 2, 1996. On the same date, petitioner entered into an agreement with TODAY for the publication of the summons on October 4, 11, and 18, 1996. The CA validated the issuance of a Writ of Attachment together with the Notice of Garnishment, but the implementation of the Writ of Attachment/Garnishment is prohibited until after the Court shall have acquired jurisdiction over the person of the petitioner, either through voluntary appearance or service of summons. On March 19, 1997, petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration with the appeals court insofar as it held that the trial court had no jurisdiction on the person of petitioner and for this reason suspended implementation of the writ of attachment/garnishment. However, the Court of Appeals denied petitioners motion. On November 27, 1997, Deputy Sheriff Glenn B. Parra, together with Atty. Rodulfo Baculi, Jr., representative of petitioner, went to the PILTEL office in Makati City to serve summons on respondent, who was then the chairman of the board of PILTEL and was expected to attend a board meeting on that day. Upon arrival, they asked the receptionist, Arlene Cuenco, if respondent would attend the meeting. Cuenco conferred with Anne V. Morallo, executive secretary of the president of PILTEL, who then called respondents office at the BA Lepanto Building, Paseo de Roxas Ave., Makati City. Morallo was informed that respondent was not going to attend the meeting. Nevertheless, Sheriff Parra and Atty. Baculi waited until 11:30 a. m. Then, they proceeded to respondents office at the BA Lepanto Building when respondent failed to appear at the board meeting. The security guard at BA Lepanto told them that respondent was holding office at the 14th floor, but when they reached the said floor, they were told by a member of the Internal Security Personnel that respondent was not known at that place.

Sheriff Parra returned to the PILTEL office to serve the summons on respondent. There, he met for the first time Anne V. Morallo, who told him that she was authorized to receive court processes for and on behalf of respondent even though the latter was not holding office in the building. Morallo was so advised by the lawyer of PILTEL. Thus, Sheriff Parra served the summons on Morallo who received it accordingly. However, when Morallo tried to forward the court process to respondent, the latters lawyer, Atty. David S. Narvasa, refused to receive it. After serving summons through Morallo, Sheriff Parra then implemented the writ of attachment by serving notices of garnishment of the properties of respondent. On December 4, 1997, respondent filed with the trial court an Urgent Omnibus Motion: (a) to Dismiss; (b) for Prohibition of the Implementation of the Writ of Attachment dated 16 November 1995; (c) for Quashal of the Notice of Garnishment dated 27 November 1997; and (d) for Release of Properties attached thereby. On April 19, 1999, the trial court denied respondents motion for lack of merit. Respondents motion for reconsideration was likewise denied on October 13, 1999.

Consequently, respondent filed a petition for certiorari with application for a Temporary Restraining Order and Writ of Preliminary Injunction in the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals promulgated its decision on December 27, 2000, annulling and setting aside the orders of the trial court, dated April 19, 1999 and October 13, 1999, on the ground that PILTEL was not the regular place of business of respondent and that, even if it was, Morallo could not be considered a competent person in charge of respondents office, as she was the executive secretary of the president of PILTEL and not of respondent. Hence, this petition for review under Rule 45 of the Revised Rules of Civil Procedure. Hence, the petition.

ISSUES:

WON respondent Ongpins continuous special appearances before the court for five years may be deemed voluntary appearance. WON the substituted service of summons on Anne V. Morallo, executive secretary of the president of PILTEL, was valid.

HELD: The Supreme Court denied the petition for lack of merit. A party who makes a special appearance in court challenging the jurisdiction of said court based on the ground, e. g., invalidity of the service of summons, cannot be considered to have submitted himself to the jurisdiction of the court. In fact, in La Naval Drug Corp. vs. Court of Appeals, this Court ruled that even the assertion of affirmative defenses aside from lack of jurisdiction over the person of the defendant cannot be considered a waiver of the defense of lack of jurisdiction over such person. As the PILTEL office is not respondents regular place of business, it cannot therefore be said that Anne V. Morallo, the person who received the service of summons in behalf of respondent, was authorized to receive service of process on behalf of respondent.