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Independent Civil Action

JESUS B. RUIZ,
G.R. No. L-45404

petitioner,

vs. ENCARNACION UCOL, respondent.
August 7, 1987
153 SCRA 14

Facts: The laundrywoman for plaintiff-appellant Ruiz filed an administrative charge against
defendant-appellee Ucol. Ucol, in her answer, alleged that Tagaca was merely used as a tool by
Ruiz who wanted to get back at the Ucol because of a case filed by respondent’s husband against
Ruiz. She was also alleged to have made remarks that Ruiz instigated the complaint and fabricated
the charges. When the administrative case was dismissed, the petitioner filed his own criminal
complaint for libel against Ucol based on the alleged libelous portion of Ucol's answer. The lower
court acquitted Ucol on the ground that her guilt was not established beyond reasonable doubt.
The trial court, as to the civil liability of the accused, made no pronouncement. Instead of
appealing, Ruiz filed a separate complaint for damages based on the same facts upon which the
libel case was founded. Ucol filed a motion to dismiss stating that the action had prescribed and
that the cause of action was barred by the decision in the criminal case for libel. The trial court
granted the motion to dismiss on the ground of res judicata (a matter already judged). On appeal,
the appellate court certified the case to the Supreme Court.
Issue: Whether or not the civil action for damages was already barred by the criminal case of libel.
Held: The contentions of the petitioner have no merit. Art. 33 of the Civil Code, independently of a
criminal action for defamation, a civil suit for the recovery of damages arising therefrom may be
brought by the injured party. The civil liability arising from the crime charged may still be
determined in the criminal proceedings if the offended party does not waive to have it adjudged, or
does not reserve his right to institute a separate civil action against the defendant. The Supreme
Court did not find any defamatory imputation, which causes dishonor, or discredit to the
complainant. She was the victim of an unprovoked, unjustified and libellous attack against her
honor, honesty, character and reputation; she has a right to self-defense, which she did in her
answer, to protect her honesty and integrity and the very job upon which her family depend for
their livelihood

ROY PADILLA, FILOMENO GALDONES, ISMAEL GONZALGO and JOSE FARLEY
BEDENIA, petitioners, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, respondent.
G.R. No. L-39999

May 31, 1984

129 SCRA 558

Facts: This is a petition for review on certiorari of a Court of Appeals' decision which reversed the
trial court's judgment of conviction and acquitted the petitioners of the crime of grave coercion on
the ground of reasonable doubt but inspite of the acquittal ordered them to pay jointly and
severally the amount of P9,000.00 to the complainants as actual damages. On February 8, 1964
Roy Padilla and company, by means of threats, force and violence prevent Antonio Vergara and his
family to close their stall located at the Public Market of Camarines Norte, and by subsequently
forcibly opening the door of said stall and thereafter brutally demolishing and destroying said stall
and the furnitures therein by axes and other massive instruments, and carrying away the goods,
wares and merchandise, to the damage and prejudice of the said Antonio Vergara and his family in
the amount of P30,000.00 in concept of actual or compensatory and moral damages, and further
the sum of P20,000.00 as exemplary damages.

Persons and Family Relations Case Digest- Block C

respondent. MARCELO JERVOSO and NORMA CLOSA. extinguish the civil liability unless there is clear showing that the act from which civil liability might arise did not exist. and review stages. and COURT OF APPEALS. a civil action for damages for the same act or omission may be instituted. appellate. Under Article 29 of the Civil Code. The petitioners appealed the judgment of conviction to the Court of Appeals on ground of reasonable doubt. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES 189 SCRA 523 Persons and Family Relations Case Digest. A judgment of acquittal operates to extinguish the criminal liability.R. 13. Considering moreover the delays suffered by the case in the trial. However. choose to file a separate action. and the rest of the accused being policemen. A separate civil action may be warranted where additional facts have to be established or more evidence must be adduced or where the criminal case has been fully terminated and a separate complaint would be just as efficacious or even more expedient than a timely remand to the trial court where the criminal action was decided for further hearings on the civil aspects of the case. convicting Padilla et al. it would be unjust to the complainants in this case to require at this time a separate civil action to be filed. it provides that "when the accused in a criminal prosecution is acquitted on the ground that his guilt has not been proved beyond reasonable doubt. The two can stand side by side. There is nothing contrary to the Civil Code provision in the rendition of a judgment of acquittal and a judgment awarding damages in the same criminal action. Issue: Whether or not the respondent court committed a reversible error in requiring the petitioners to pay civil indemnity to the complainants after acquitting them from the criminal charge. These do not exist in this case. Camarines Norte. Sept. 1990 vs." It merely emphasizes that a civil action for damages is not precluded by an acquittal for the same criminal act or omission.Independent Civil Action That in committing the offense. however. Held: The SC held that the respondent Court of Appeals did not err in awarding damages despite a judgment of acquittal. A separate civil case may be filed but there is no statement that such separate filing is the only and exclusive permissible mode of recovering damages.Block C . But they are ordered to pay jointly and severally to complainants the amount of P9.600. The offended party may. G. of course. 89306 petitioner. Tenth Judicial District rendered a decision. except Ricardo Celestino who is a civilian.00. The Civil Code provision does not state that the remedy can be availed of only in a separate civil action. The petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration contending that the acquittal of the defendants-appellants as to criminal liability results in the extinction of their civil liability. The Court of First Instance of Camarines Norte. It does not. all of Jose Panganiban. being the incumbent municipal mayor. as actual damages. No. the accused took advantage of their public positions as Roy Padilla. and that it was committed with evident premeditation.

vs.000.Independent Civil Action Facts: The RTC of Manila and the CA convicted petitioner Marcelo Jervoso of homicide for the fatal stabbing of Rogelio Jervoso. G.. The Supreme court entirely in accord with the trial court that the affirmative defense of selfdefense was not proven by clear and convincing evidence. The term "physical injuries" in Art. a passenger bus operated by private respondent Victory Liner.R.000 as civil indemnity for his death despite their reservation to file a separate civil action for that purpose. Held: The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court's finding that the plea of self-defense was not proven by clear and convincing evidence. It includes consummated. AMALIA MOJICA. Regrettably missing in the appellants' evidence are the elements of self-defense which are: (1) unlawful aggression. The Court of Appeals likewise erred in affirming the award. COURT OF APPEALS. The evidence is doubtful. and RENATO YAP. and convicted Marcelo’s wife. an information for homicide and serious physical injuries thru reckless imprudence was filed against Felardo Paje in Persons and Family Relations Case Digest. respondent. which dismissed the complaint filed by the petitioners against private respondents in the concept of an independent civil action for damages for physical injuries resulting from reckless imprudence. collided with a jeep driven by Clemente Marcia. FELARDO PAJE. (2) reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent and repel it. resulting in the latter's death and in physical injuries to herein petitioners. Edgar Marcia and Renato Yap. The RTC imposed the penalty of imprisonment and ordered the petitioners to indemnify the heirs of the deceased R. Having reserved and filed in the Regional Trial Court of Manila a separate civil action to recover the civil liability of the accused arising from the crimes charged. private respondent Felardo Paje. 1983 120 SCRA 200 Facts: This is an appeal by certiorari from the decision of the Court of Appeals affirming the judgment of the Court of First Instance of Rizal. 1956. Cruz. and (3) lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself. and VICTORY LINER. DAMIANA MARCIA. TIRSO YAP. No. INC. The trial court erred in awarding to the heirs of Rogelio Jervoso in the criminal case P30. 33 is used in a generic sense. frustrated. the heirs of the deceased Rogelio Jervoso.Block C . and lacks that requisite of certainty and sufficient credulity to sustain the plea of self-defense. of slight physical injuries committed against the deceased. The defense failed to demonstrate the concurrence of the three essential elements with satisfactory evidence so as to entitle the appellant of the defense of self-defense. Issue: Whether or not the indemnity may be recovered by the heirs of R. for they are not entitled to recover damages twice for the same criminal act of the accused. and driven by its employee. petitioners. Thereupon. Jervoso in the amount of P30. Norma Closa. L-34529 January 27. Jervoso despite the reservation by the said heirs of their right to file a separate civil action against the accused. On December 23. EDGAR MARCIA. 126 SCRA 293) . Inc. or attempted homicide(Madeja vs. are precluded from recovering damages in the criminal case against the accused. MAXIMO MARCIA.

it is as good as saying as if he did not commit the crime charged. However. may be brought by the injured party during the pendency of the criminal case. no civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution." Also. we have held in the case of Tan vs. Issue: Whether or not the decision of the Court of Appeals acquitting the accused in reckless imprudence on the ground that the incident was accidental. extinguished by implication the civil action for damages. Standard Vacuum Oil Company. 33. While said Civil Case was in progress in the Court of First Instance of Rizal. Such civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution. unless the extinction proceeds from a declaration in a final judgment that the fact from which the civil might arise did not exist. Section 2 of Rule 111 merely refers to the institution of an independent civil action without waiting for the filing or termination of the criminal action and requires only preponderance of evidence to prosper and not proof beyond reasonable doubt as required for conviction in criminal cases. the CA found that this case was of pure accident. Persons and Family Relations Case Digest. and Felardo Paje. On August 10. As early as 1952. 1966. that "the acquittal of the accused from the criminal charge will not necessarily extinguish the civil liability unless the court declares in the judgment that the fact from which the civil liability might arise did not exist. However. Hence. 91 Phil. 34 and 2177 of the Civil Code of the Philippines. provided the right is reserved as required in the preceding section. They are not one of the three (3) crimes mentioned in Article 33 of the Civil Code and. he was acquitted with the CA holding that "CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE is WANTING in this case. and shall require only a preponderance of evidence. and that appellant was NOT even guilty of CIVIL NEGLIGENCE. Rule 111 of the Rules of Court. It is the stand of herein petitioners that Section 2. Inc. against the Victory Liner. the charge against Felardo Paje was not for homicide and physical injuries but for reckless imprudence or criminal negligence resulting in homicide (death of Clemente Marcia) and physical injuries suffered by Edgar Marcia and Renato Yap. which basically affirmed the RTC decision.Independent Civil Action the CFI of Pampanga. an action for damages was filed in the CFI of Rizal by Edgar Marcia and Renato Yap.Block C . Petitioners appealed the case to the CA. Since. this recourse. no civil liability arises. and Felardo Paje. 'this declaration fits well into the exception of the rule which exempts the accused. The cases provided for in Articles 31. Consequently. an acquittal based on the finding that the facts upon which civil liability did not exist bars the filing of an independent civil action if it is based on the crime." -We do not agree. on appeal to the Court of Appeals. Where the court states 'that the evidence throws no light on the cause of fire and that it was an unfortunate accident for which the accused cannot be held responsible. an independent civil action entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action. together with their respective parents. There being no crime committed. Inc. the criminal action proceeded in the Court of First Instance of Pampanga. 32. therefore. Held: The extinction of the penal action does not carry with it extinction of the civil. The accused Felardo Paje was convicted of the offense charged. alleging that the mishap was due to the reckless imprudence and negligence of the latter in driving the passenger bus. 672. from civil liability. not Section 3 (c)thereof. should apply in the case at bar. the Court of First Instance of Rizal rendered a decision dismissing plaintiffs' complaint against the defendants Victory Liner.

Such fault or negligence.Independent Civil Action MARIA BENITA A. vs. Napoleon Dulay occurred at Alabang Village. Dulay. Respondent judge declared that the complaint was one for damages founded on crimes punishable under Articles 100 and 103 of the Revised Penal Code as distinguished from those arising from. all surnamed DULAY. an altercation between Benigno Torzuela and Atty. in her own behalf and in behalf of the minor children KRIZTEEN ELIZABETH. there being fault or negligence. Respondent Safeguard also filed a motion praying that it be excluded as defendant on the ground that defendant Torzuela is not one of its employees. SAFEGUARD INVESTIGATION AND SECURITY CO. Petitioner Maria Benita A. Former Eighth Division. stating that their cause of action against the private respondents is based on their liability under Article 2180 of the New Civil Code. 108017 April 3.. No. and Whether or not Article 33 of the New Civil Code applies only to injuries intentionally committed. Respondent Superguard filed a Motion to Dismiss on the ground that the complaint does not state a valid cause of action. if there is no pre-existing contractual relation between the parties is called a quasi-delict and is governed by the provisions of this Chapter. the civil liability therefor is governed by Article 100 of the Revised Penal Code. and SUPERGUARD SECURITY CORPORATION. Held: Article 2176 of the New Civil Code provides that “whoever by act or omission causes damage to another. Muntinlupa as a result of which Benigno Torzuela. petitioners. the respondent argued that petitioners’ filing of the complaint is premature considering that the conviction of Torzuela in a criminal case is a condition sine qua non for the employer’s subsidiary liability. 1988. respondents. cannot lie. DULAY. in her own behalf and in behalf of her minor children. G. In addition. Napoleon Dulay. in his capacity as Presiding Judge of the Regional Trial Court National Capital Region. since the civil liability under Article 2176 applies only to quasi-offenses under Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code. Br. HON. 84. THE COURT OF APPEALS. Issues: Whether or not Torzuela’ s act of shooting Napoleon Dulay constitutes a quasi-delict actionable under Article 2176 of the New Civil Code.” Contrary to the theory of private respondents. BEVERLY MARIE and NAPOLEON II. and that since the alleged act of shooting was committed with deliberate intent (dolo). shot and killed Atty.. such as the one filed by petitioners. filed an action for damages against Benigno Torzuela and private respondents Safeguard and/or Superguard. quasi-delict. Superguard claimed that Torzuela’s act of shooting Dulay was beyond the scope of his duties. Superguard further alleged that a complaint for damages based on negligence under Article 2176 of the New Civil Code. the security guard on duty at the said carnival. TEODORO P. is obliged to pay for the damage done. widow of the deceased Napoleon Dulay. alleged employers of defendant Torzuela.Block C . there is no justification for limiting the scope of Article 2176 of the Civil Code to acts Persons and Family Relations Case Digest. Quezon City. 1995 243 SCRA 220 Facts: On December 7. INC. REGINO. Petitioners opposed both motions.R.

The term “physical injuries” in Article 33 has already been construed to include bodily injuries causing death. Under Article 2180 of the New Civil Code. a civil action based on Article 33 lies. Therefore.Block C . it is incumbent upon the private respondents to prove that they exercised the diligence of a good father of a family in the selection and supervision of their employee. there instantly arises a presumption of law that there was negligence on the part of the master or employer either in the selection of the servant or employee. The liability of the employer under Article 2180 is direct and immediate. it is not conditioned upon prior recourse against the negligent employee and a prior showing of the insolvency of such employee. the accused in the case at bar. Although in the Marcia case. Well-entrenched is the doctrine that article 2176 covers not only acts committed with negligence. but also acts which are voluntary and intentional. is charged with homicide. frustrated. that Torzuela. Persons and Family Relations Case Digest. it must be noted. or in supervision over him after selection or both. and attempted homicide. however. when an injury is caused by the negligence of the employee. in this case. not with reckless imprudence. whereas the defendant in Marcia was charged with reckless imprudence. It is not the crime of physical injuries defined in the Revised Penal Code.Independent Civil Action or omissions resulting from negligence. Therefore. it was held that no independent civil action may be filed under Article 33 where the crime is the result of criminal negligence. It includes not only physical injuries but also consummated.