6. THE ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF JARO vs.

GREGORIO DE LA PEÑA, administrator of the estate of Father Agustin de la Peña
FACTS:
The Roman Catholic Bishop of Jaro (RCBJ) is the trustee of a charitable bequest made for the construction
of a leper hospital and Father Agustin de la Peña was the duly authorized representative of RCBJ to
receive the legacy.
In 1898 Father De la Peña, as trusteereceived P6,641 for the charitable purposes aforesaid. In the same
year he deposited in his personal account P19,000 in the Hongkong and Shanghai Bank at Iloilo. Shortly
thereafter and during the war of the revolution, Father De la Peña was arrested by the military authorities
as a political prisoner, and while thus detained made an order on said bank in favor of the United States
Army officer under whose charge he then was for the sum thus deposited in said bank. The arrest of Father
De la Peña and the confiscation of the funds in the bank were the result of the claim of the military
authorities that he was an insurgent and that the funds thus deposited had been collected by him for
revolutionary purposes. The money was taken from the bank by the military authorities by virtue of such
order, was confiscated and turned over to the Government.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Father De la Peña, as the trustee mat be held responsible for the loss of the sum of money
for charity.
HELD:
NO.
Although the Civil Code states that "a person obliged to give something is also bound to preserve it with the
diligence pertaining to a father of a family" (art. 1094), it also provides, following the principle of the
Roman law, major casus est, cui humana infirmitas resistere non potest, that "no one shall be liable for
events which could not be foreseen, or which having been foreseen were inevitable, with the exception of
the cases expressly mentioned in the law or those in which the obligation so declares." (Art. 1105.)
By placing the money in the bank and mixing it with his personal funds De la Peña did not thereby assume
an obligation different from that under which he would have lain if such deposit had not been made, nor did
he thereby make himself liable to repay the money at all hazards. The fact that he placed the trust fund in
the bank in his personal account does not add to his responsibility. Such deposit did not make him a debtor
who must respond at all hazards.
There was no law prohibiting him from depositing it as he did and there was no law which changed his
responsibility by reason of the deposit. While it may be true that one who is under obligation to do or give a
thing is in duty bound, when he sees events approaching the results of which will be dangerous to his trust,
to take all reasonable means and measures to escape or, if unavoidable, to temper the effects of those
events, we do not feel constrained to hold that, in choosing between two means equally legal, he is
culpably negligent in selecting one whereas he would not have been if he had selected the other.

Separate Opinions:
The amount given to charity was clothed with all the immunities and protection with which the law seeks to
invest trust funds. But when De la Peña mixed this trust fund with his own and deposited the whole in the
bank to his personal account or credit, he by this act stamped on the said fund his own private marks and
unclothed it of all the protection it had. If this money had been deposited in the name of De la Peña as
trustee or agent of the plaintiff, I think that it may be presumed that the military authorities would not have
confiscated it for the reason that they were looking for insurgent funds only.

. 337). From then on. this Court has ruled that if an employee is found negligent. He rented a safety deposit box as it was his practice to rent a safety deposit box every time he registered at Tropicana in previous trips. an Australian businessman who was befriended by a certain Tan. by having these guests execute written waivers holding the establishment or its employees free from blame for such loss in light of Article 2003 of the Civil Code which voids such waivers HELD: No. Lopez served as manager of the hotel while Lainez and Payam had custody of the keys for the safety deposit boxes of Tropicana. Payam and Danilo Lopez were employed. are liable for damages. Article 2180. the latter convinced him to check in at Tropicana Hotel where Lainez. including but not limited to the presentation or use thereof by any other person should the key be lost. Tan admitted that she had stolen McLoughlin's key and was able to open the safety deposit box with the assistance of Lopez. he immediately confronted Lainez and Payam who admitted that Tan opened the safety deposit box with the key assigned to him.” ISSUE: Whether a hotel may evade liability for the loss of items left with it for safekeeping by its guests. he used the services of the said hotel. S. When McLoughlin discovered the loss. He however discovered that the money and other important documents such as credit cards and bank checks contained in the deposit box were missing. those who. it is presumed that the employer was negligent in selecting and/or supervising him for it is hard for the victim to prove the negligence of such employer. given the fact that the loss of McLoughlin's money was consummated through the negligence of Tropicana's employees in allowing Tan to open the safety deposit box without the guest's consent. But this exemption ceases when they mix the trust-money with their own. 2005 FACTS: McLoughlin. at page 343. both the assisting employees and YHT Realty . YHT REALTY CORPORATION. Thus. Equity will not exact more of them. ERLINDA LAINEZ and ANICIA PAYAM vs. in the performance of their obligations. Payam and Lainez.R. Lopez refused to accept the responsibility relying on the conditions for renting the safety deposit box entitled "Undertaking For the Use Of Safety Deposit Box.” The undertaking states: “To release and hold free and blameless TROPICANA APARTMENT HOTEL from any liability arising from any loss in the contents and/or use of the said deposit box for any cause whatsoever. Thomas (82 U. 126780 February 17. Under Article 1170 of the New Civil Code. They are not liable for a loss by theft without their fault. paragraph (4) of the same Code provides that the owners and managers of an establishment or enterprise are likewise responsible for damages caused by their employees in the service of the branches in which the latter are employed or on the occasion of their functions. Also. As to who shall bear the burden of paying damages. McLoughlin insisted that it must be the hotel who must assume responsibility for the loss he suffered.The Supreme Court of the United States in the United State vs. However. No. whereby it loses its identity." 7. are guilty of negligence. said: "Trustees are only bound to exercise the same care and solicitude with regard to the trust property which they would exercise with regard to their own. and they become mere debtors. THE COURT OF APPEALS and MAURICE McLOUGHLIN G. McLoughlin went up to his room where Tan was staying and confronted her.

Any stipulation between the hotel-keeper and the guest whereby the responsibility of the former as set forth in Articles 1998 to 2001 is suppressed or diminished shall be void. hotelkeepers are bound to provide not only lodging for hotel guests and security to their persons and belongings. Catering to the public. as owner and operator of Tropicana. The hotel business like the common carrier's business is imbued with public interest. The "Undertaking For The Use of Safety Deposit Box" executed by McLoughlin null and void. 2003. The law in turn does not allow such duty to the public to be negated or diluted by any contrary stipulation in so-called "undertakings" that ordinarily appear in prepared forms imposed by hotel keepers on guests for their signature. Article 2003 was incorporated in the New Civil Code as an expression of public policy precisely to apply to situations such as that presented in this case. . The twin duty constitutes the essence of the business. should be held solidarily liable pursuant to Article 2193.Corporation itself. The hotel-keeper cannot free himself from responsibility by posting notices to the effect that he is not liable for the articles brought by the guest. Art.