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212 HEIRS OF LORETO C.

MARAMAG, represented by
surviving
spouse
VICENTA
PANGILINAN
MARAMAG,Petitioners,
vs.
EVA VERNA DE GUZMAN MARAMAG, ODESSA DE
GUZMAN MARAMAG, KARL BRIAN DE GUZMAN
MARAMAG, TRISHA ANGELIE MARAMAG, THE
INSULAR LIFE ASSURANCE COMPANY, LTD., and GREAT
PACIFIC LIFE ASSURANCE CORPORATION, Respondents.
[G.R. No. 181132
June 5, 2009]
TOPIC: Rights of illegitimate children, FC 173, 172, 175-176
PONENTE: NACHURA, J.

AUTHOR:
NOTES: (if applicable)

FACTS: (chronological order)


1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

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9.

Petitioners were the legitimate wife (Vicenta) and children of Loreto Maramag (Loreto), while respondents were Loret
illegitimate family.
Loreto designated respondents as beneficiaries in his life insurance policies from Insular Life Assurance Company, Ltd. (Insul
and Great Pacific Life Assurance Corporation (Grepalife). Hence, Loretos concubine, Eva de Guzman Maramag, was designa
as such.
Petitioner Vicenta and respondent Eva claimed for Loretos insurance.
Petitioners insituted in the RTC a petition for revocation and/or reduction of insurance proceeds for being void and/or inofficio
with prayer for a temporary restraining order (TRO) and a writ of preliminary injunction.
Petitioners allege that Eva was a concubine of Loreto and a suspect in the killing of the latter, thus, she is disqualified to rece
any proceeds from his insurance policies Insular and Grepalife; the illegitimate children of LoretoOdessa, Karl Brian, and Tris
Angeliewere entitled only to one-half of the legitime of the legitimate children, thus, the proceeds released to Odessa and tho
to be released to Karl Brian and Trisha Angelie were inofficious and should be reduced; and petitioners could not be deprived
their legitimes, which should be satisfied first. Petitioners invoked the law on donations or the rules on testamentary succession
order to defeat the right of herein defendants to collect the insurance indemnity.
Pursuant to the motion to dismiss incorporated in Insular and Grepalifes respective answers, the TC dismissed the complaint w
respect to the illegitimate children, who are the the designated primary beneficiaries in the life insurance policies, for lack of cau
action. However, trial court ruled that the action may proceed against the concubine Eva, Insular Life, and Grepalife.
Insular and Grepalife filed their respective motions for reconsideration, arguing, in the main, that the petition failed to state a cau
of action against them.
TC granted the MRs, and dismissed the case against them.
CA dismissed petitionersappeal for lack of jurisdiction, holding that the decision of the trial court dismissing the complaint
failure to state a cause of action involved a pure question of law. Further, it found that due to petitioners failure to timely fil
motion for reconsideration, the dismissal against Insular and Grepalife had already attained finality.

ISSUE(S): Whether or not the illegitimate family of Loreto can claim his insurance proceeds.
HELD: YES.
RATIO:

The civil code provides that any person who is forbidden from receiving any donation under Article 739 cannot be
named beneficiary of a life insurance policy of the person who cannot make any donation to him. If a concubine is made
the beneficiary, it is believed that the insurance contract will still remain valid, but the indemnity must go to the legal heirs and not to
the concubine, for evidently, what is prohibited under Art. 2012 is the naming of the improper beneficiary.
However, Art. 2011 of the Civil Code provides that the contract of insurance is governed by the (sic) special laws. Matters not
expressly provided for in such special laws shall be regulated by this Code. The principal law on insurance is the Insurance Code, as
amended. Only in case of deficiency in the Insurance Code that the Civil Code may be resorted to.

Section 53 of the Imsurance Code provides that the insurance proceeds shall be applied exclusively to the proper interest of the perso
in whose name or for whose benefit it is made unless otherwise specified in the policy.

Hence, the general rule is only persons entitled to claim the insurance proceeds are either the insured, if still alive; or the beneficiary,
the insured is already deceased, upon the maturation of the policy.
Exception lies in a situation where the insurance contract was intended to benefit third persons who are not parties to the same in the
form of favorable stipulations or indemnity. In such a case, third parties may directly sue and claim from the insurer
It is only in cases where the insured has not designated any beneficiary, or when the designated beneficiary is disqualified by law to
receive the proceeds, that the insurance policy proceeds shall redound to the benefit of the estate of the insured

It is evident from the face of the complaint that petitioners are not entitled to a favorable judgment in light of Article 2011 of the Ci
Code which expressly provides that insurance contracts shall be governed by special laws, i.e., the Insurance Code.

Section 53 of the Insurance Code states that the insurance proceeds shall be applied exclusively to the proper interest of the person
whose name or for whose benefit it is made unless otherwise specified in the policy. F rom the petition filed before the trial court th
it is clear that although petitioners are the legitimate heirs of Loreto, they were not named as beneficiaries in the insurance polic
issued by Insular and Grepalife. Thus, they are not entitled to the proceeds thereof. Accordingly, respondents Insular and Grepal
have no legal obligation to turn over the insurance proceeds to petitioners.
CASE LAW/ DOCTRINE:
DISSENTING/CONCURRING OPINION(S):