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VICTRONICS COMPUTERS vs RTC, BR63

,
PANORAMA ENTERPRISES , Et. Al.
Subject: Obligations & Contracts

By:
DEXTER GARY P. FLORES

the six respondent corporations filed with the RTC of Makati a complaint.. They provide that there is a pending action. 1991. The case was docketed as Civil Case No. On August 9. and he does any act in relation to them which is inconsistent with the ownership of the seller. Section 1(e) Rule 16 of the Rules Of the Court – states that the Rule do not require as a ground for dismissal of a complaint that there is a prior pending action. The case was docketed as Civil Case No. the payment must be made at the time and place of the delivery of the thing sold. regardless of which party is successful. was only paid 50% percent of the purchase price of the computers and peripherals the company have delivered to the six different branches of Victoria Court under the Victoria Court. The petitioner then filed a complaint against the said corporation on July 26. Article 1585 of the Civil Code – The buyer is deemed to have accepted the goods when he intimates to the seller that he has accepted them. for the nullification of the abovementioned Purchase Order and for the damages done against the herein petitioner and one Teodorico B. he retains the goods without intimating to the seller that he has rejected them. LITIS PENDENTIA – as a principle is a sanction of public policy against multiplicity of suits. Victronics Computers. or when. not a pending prior action. . identity of parties. 91-2069 and was raffled off to Branch 63 of the Makati RTC.I Statement of the Legal Problem The petitioner. the plea of another action pending is sustained is that the latter action is deemed unnecessary and vexatious. 1991 with the RTC of Makati for a sum of money and damages for not paying the outstanding balance within and after the period stipulated in the Purchase Order despite demands for its payment made on Velhagen and King which was then the Genral Manager and Chief Executive Officer of the corporation. GMT Consolidated Company and Victoria Group of Companies. or when the goods have been delivered to him. 91-2192 and was raffled to Branch 150 of the said court. If the time and place should not have been stipulated. identity in the two cases should be such that the judgement that may be rendered in the pending case would. amount to res judicata in the other. the relief being found on the same facts. The fact that the unlawful detainer suit was of a latter date is no bar to the dismissal of the present action. or at least such as representing the same interest in both actions. who is the manager of the Management Information Systems Division of the said company. Inc. Kabigting. dated 7 August 1991. Article 1582 of the Civil code– The vendee is bound to accept delivery and to pay the price of the thing sold at the time and place stipulated in the contract. 2 . 2. 3. II Legal Concepts relevant to the Case LITIS PENDENTIA – the following are the grounds for Litis Pendentia to be invoked as a ground for the abatement or dismissal of an action: 1. FORUM SHOPPING – A party should not be allowed to pursue simultaneous remedies in two different forums for it does havoc to the rule on orderly procedure. identity of the rights asserted and relief prayed for. after the lapse of a reasonable time.

. a contempt charge against the respondents for forum-shopping claiming that after having received the summons and a copy of the complaint. after deducting a P7. 1991. On September 19. and 50% downpayment. who operate the business under the names Victoria Court. 91-2192 a Special Appearance and Motion to Dismiss asking the trial court to dismiss the case on the grounds of improper service of summons and lack of jurisdiction over its defendant therein. 91-2069. petitioner filed in Civil Case No..O. 91-2192 and was raffled to Branch 150 of the Makati RTC. Only 50% of the purchase price of each of the sets delivered to the different establishments was paid by the said corporations. a domestic corporation engaged in the sale of computer systems and peripherals. 91-2069 because of Litis Pendentia. Inc.00 subject to the following conditions : a) payment – 50% downpayment. 1991 the six respondent corporations filed a complaint with the RTC of Makati dated August 7. 1991. 3 . Delivery of the remaining computer systems and peripherals was completed on June 20. Metro Manila below it. The case was docketed as Civil Case No.O. The private respondents ordered six(6) sets of 80 DATA 386 computer system with peripherals for the net consideration. Velhagen and Archie R.000 discount. and the address 2129 Pasong Tamo St. Kabigting on the basis of fraud and undue influence and ordering the supplier of the said computers jointly and severally liable. submitted a quotation for office systems to service the networking requirements of various Victoria Court branches. amount per day of delay. with the RTC of Makati a complaint for a sum of money and damages against: Karl c. 1991. Upon payment of the said 50% downpayment and the issuance of a P. 50% COD upon completion of the delivery. b) plaintiff failed to sue the proper parties and c) there is a prejudicial question or a pending incident before another court On September 5. private respondents Velhagen and King placed an order with the petitioner in a Purchase Order 1 form on which is written “GMT CONSOLIDATED” above the printed word COMPANY. Logarta. Defendants Velhagen and King were each served a summon and a copy of the complaint on August 8.. On September 16.1991 Branch 63 of the Makati RTC issued an order dismissing Civil Case No. The case was docketed as Civil Case No. On August 22 1991. the petitioner filed on July 26.O. of P767. GMT Consolidated Company and Victoria Group of Companies. the first three of the computer systems was delivered on May 22. respondent Velhagen and King filed a Motion to Dismiss and to suspend the proceedings based on the following grounds: a) petitioner failed to verify the complaint. b) delivery – within 30 calendar days upon receipt of P. Velhagen and King filed in Civil Case No. The outstanding balance not having been paid within and after the period stipulated in the Purchase Order despites demand for its payment on Velhagen and King. 1991 for the nullification of the abovementioned Purchase Order and for damages against the herein petitioner and one Teodoro B. Makati. 1991. Satisfied with the said quotations. King. 1991. 1991.III Highlights of the Case Petitioner Victronics Computers.000. 91-2069 and was raffled to Branch 63 of the said court which was then presided by herein respondent Judge Julio R. c) penalty – 1% of total P. On August 9. both respondent did not file an answer with compulsory counterclaim but instead filed a separate action one day later.

91-2192 was not filed upon an inspiration of unadulterated good faith but to vex or harass in other forum the petitioner in the first case. 1991. 1991 petitioner requested and obtained a copy of the said order of dismissal of Civil Case No. The petitioner filed an instant petition as a consequence of the January 22. On the same date. On June 10. petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration of the said order of dismissal. Civil Case No. Victronics Computers Inc. Petitioner filed in Civil Case No. 1991 and declaring that portion denying the motion for consolidation as moot and academic. 1992 it filed in the same case a Manifestation Pro Hac Vice wherein it states that there was no pending action before Branch 150 as it had not yet acquired jurisdiction over the person of the petitioner. The court also decided in favor of the petitioner of the first case because in the second case filed by the company. 91-2069. On October 4. On October 14. Judge Zeus Abrogar ordered the reservice of summons on the petitioner on September 25. 91-2069 a motion for the consolidation of the two cases before Branch 63 where the prior case was filed and on January 6. 1991 petitioner filed in Civil Case No.91-2192 an answer with compulsory counterclaim on January 20. On December 11. based on Litis Pendentia whereby Civil Case No. the lawyers forgot to comply with the primary requirement of their case which is the Purchase Order which was then not attached to their complaint. 1992 order. 91-2069 which resolved the various motions filed by the petitioner. 1991 the petitioner filed in Civil Case No. 91-2069 satisfies the requirements for the abatement or dismissal of an action. It is also noted that the second action. 91-2069 is hereby modified by setting aside that portion thereof denying the motion to reconsider its Order of Sept. The court also noted that the court does not require that the latter case should yield to the earlier case. 4 . The respondents did not proved to the court that the second action was not brought to harass or vex the defendant and is not in fact vexatious. The Order of respondent Court of 22 January 1992 I Civic Case No. 91-2192 on grounds of lis pendens with cost against the defendants therein. 1992 the court resolved to give due course to the petition and required the parties to submit their respective Memoranda. what is required is a pending action and not a pending prior action. The court therefore granted the instant petition of the plaintiff and therefore dismissing Civil Case No. On October 9. the Clerk of Court Branch 63 sent the petitioner by registered mail a copy of the 22 January 1992 Order in Civil Case No. 1991 after proper service of summons. 16. petitioner filed a Motion to Dismiss Civil Case No. which they subsequently complied with. IV Case Analysis and the Supreme Court Resolution The court decided in favor of the petitioner. 91-2192 on the grounds of litis pendentia and forum shopping. On 7 February 1992. 1992. 91-2069 an Ex Abundante Cautela Motion to Refer Forum Shopping Charge to Executive Judge.

The lawyers of the defendant failed to convince the court that they acted based on good faith. and that is the purchase order in the case at bar. The second case should be abated since it violates the rule of forum shopping that states that a party should be allowed to pursue simultaneous remedies in two different forum. The respondents failed to established this one to the court and in addition because of their haste to file the case to the court.V Critique of the Supreme Court Decision I agree with the Court’s decision to make Civil Case No. 91-2069 satisfies all the requisites of litis pendentia and should therefore be given the favorable decision of the court. Contracts are binding and stipulations of the contract should be at all times be followed and with the respondent company not fulfilling its obligation. It is proven that the second action was self-serving and is done to vex the other party. The respondents should have offered to return the computers if they are really not satisfied with the performance of the said computers and established to the court that the computers delivered are outdated and obsolete. Civil Case No. It is also noted that the second action was self-serving and failed to prove to the court that their action was in good faith and not meant to harass the petitioner of the first case. the defendants failed to attached the simple and basic requirement in filing a case based on documents presented. 91-2069 the ground in examining the case and deciding in favor of the petitioner because the respondents failed to prove that the second case was initiated without an unadulterated good faith and is not brought to harass the petitioner of the first case. VI Conclusion and Recommendation Rule does not require as a ground for dismissal of a complaint that there is a prior action but only a pending action. 5 . the company should be held liable for its damages to the vendor as stated in the Article 1582 of the Civil Code.