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aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaG.R. NO.

170215
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SPS. ESMERALDO AND ELIZABETH SUICO vs. PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK AND HON. COURT OF APPEALS

FACTS:

1. Spouses Suico obtained a loan from PNB secured by a real estate mortgage on real properties in the name
of the former.
2. Sps. Suico failed to pay the obligation prompting PNB to extrajudicially foreclose the mortgage over the
subject properties.
3. Petitioners, thereafter filed a complaint alleging that the extrajudicial foreclosure conducted and the
Certificate of Sale and the Certificate of Finality sale are null and void;
a. During the foreclosure sale, PNB was the lone bidder.
b. The amount of bid is P8,511,000.00.
c. Petitioners alleged that the outstanding obligation is only P1,991,770.38.
d. Since the amount of the bid grossly exceeded the amount of petitioners’ outstanding obligation
as stated in the extrajudicial foreclosure of mortgage, it was the legal duty of the winning bidder,
PNB, to deliver to the Mandaue City Sheriff the bid price or what was left thereof after deducting
the amount of petitioners’ outstanding obligation.
e. PNB failed to deliver the amount of their bid to the Mandaue City Sheriff or, at the very least, the
amount of such bid in excess of petitioners’ outstanding obligation.
4. PNB moved to dismiss citing the pendency of another action between the same properties where PNB
was seeking payment of the balance of petitioner’s obligation not covered by the proceeds of the auction
sale.
5. RTC denied the Motion to Dismiss.
6. PNB asserted, in its answer, that petitioners had other loans which had likewise become due. PNB
maintained that the outstanding obligation of the petitioners under their regular and export- related
loans was already more than the bid price of P8,511,000.00, contradicting the claim of surplus proceeds
due the petitioners. Petitioners were well aware that their total principal outstanding obligation on the
date of the auction sale was P5,503,293.21.
7. RTC – declared the extrajudicial foreclosure null and void.
a. RTC reasoned that given that petitioners had other loan obligations which had not yet matured
on 10 March 1992 but became due by the date of the auction sale on 30 October 1992, it does
not justify the shortcut taken by PNB and will not excuse it from paying to the Sheriff who
conducted the auction sale the excess bid in the foreclosure sale. To allow PNB to do so would
constitute fraud, for not only is the filing fee in the said foreclosure inadequate but, worse, the
same constitutes a misrepresentation regarding the amount of the indebtedness to be paid in
the foreclosure sale as posted and published in the notice of sale.[11] Such misrepresentation is
fatal because in an extrajudicial foreclosure of mortgage, notice of sale is jurisdictional. Any
error in the notice of sale is fatal and invalidates the notice.
8. CA – reversed.
a. Petitioners offered to redeem the properties several times from 6.5M to 7.5M.
b. All those offers made by the [petitioners] not only contradicted their very assertion that their
obligation is merely that amount appearing on the petition for foreclosure but are also indicative
of the fact that they have admitted the validity of the extra judicial foreclosure proceedings and
in effect have cured the impugned defect.
c. Even assuming that indeed there was a surplus and the [PNB] is retaining more than the
proceeds of the sale than it is entitled, this fact alone will not affect the validity of the sale but
simply gives the [petitioners] a cause of action to recover such surplus.
d. Such failure of PNB does not constitute jurisdictional defect.

ISSUE: Whether or not the extrajudicial foreclosure is valid.


HELD: YES
Petitioners argue that since the Notice of Sheriff’s Sale stated that their obligation was only P1,991,770.38 and
PNB biddedP8,511,000.00, the said Notice as well as the consequent sale of the subject properties were null and
void.

It is true that statutory provisions governing publication of notice of mortgage foreclosure sales must be strictly
complied with, and that even slight deviations therefrom will invalidate the notice and render the sale at
least voidable.[19]

Nonetheless, we must not also lose sight of the fact that the purpose of the publication of the Notice of
Sheriff’s Sale is to inform all interested parties of the date, time and place of the foreclosure sale of the real
property subject thereof.

Logically, this not only requires that the correct date, time and place of the foreclosure sale appear in the notice,
but also that any and all interested parties be able to determine that what is about to be sold at the foreclosure
sale is the real property in which they have an interest.

Notices are given for the purpose of securing bidders and to prevent a sacrifice of the property. If these objects
are attained, immaterial errors and mistakes will not affect the sufficiency of the notice; but if mistakes or
omissions occur in the notices of sale, which are calculated to deter or mislead bidders, to depreciate the value of
the property, or to prevent it from bringing a fair price, such mistakes or omissions will be fatal to the validity of
the notice, and also to the sale made pursuant thereto.

Petitioners failed to convince this Court that the difference between the amount stated in the Notice of Sale and
the amount of PNB’s bid resulted in discouraging or misleading bidders, depreciated the value of the property or
prevented it from commanding a fair price.

Considering the amount of PNB’s bid of P8,511,000.00 as against the amount of the petitioners’ obligation
of P1,991,770.38 in the Notice of Sale, is the PNB obliged to deliver the excess? YES.

Section 21 of Rule 39 emphasized that if the amount of loan is equal to the bid, there is no need to pay the amount
in cash. Same provision mandates that in the absence of a third-party claim, the purchaser in an execution sale
need not pay his bid if it does not exceed the amount of the judgment; otherwise, he shall pay only the excess.

The ratio is that it would be senseless for the Sheriff conducting the foreclosure sale to go through the ceremony
of receiving money and giving it back to the creditor.

Under Rule 68, Section 4, the disposition of the proceeds of the sale in foreclosure shall be as follows:

(a) first, pay the costs

(b) secondly, pay off the mortgage debt

(c) thirdly, pay the junior encumbrancers, if any in the order of priority

(d) fourthly, give the balance to the mortgagor, his agent or the person entitled to it.

Based on the foregoing, after payment of the costs of suit and satisfaction of the claim of the first
mortgagee/senior mortgagee, the claim of the second mortgagee/junior mortgagee may be satisfied from the
surplus proceeds. The application of the proceeds from the sale of the mortgaged property to the mortgagor’s
obligation is an act of payment, not payment by dacion; hence, it is the mortgagee’s duty to return any surplus in
the selling price to the mortgagor.
Perforce, a mortgagee who exercises the power of sale contained in a mortgage is considered a custodian of the
fund and, being bound to apply it properly, is liable to the persons entitled thereto if he fails to do so. And even
though the mortgagee is not strictly considered a trustee in a purely equitable sense, but as far as concerns the
unconsumed balance, the mortgagee is deemed a trustee for the mortgagor or owner of the equity of redemption.

Thus it has been held that if the mortgagee is retaining more of the proceeds of the sale than he is entitled to, this
fact alone will not affect the validity of the sale but simply give the mortgagor a cause of action to recover such
surplus.

Given that the Statement of Account from PNB, being the only existing documentary evidence to support its claim,
shows that petitioners’ loan obligations to PNB as of 30 October 1992 amounted to P6,409,814.92, and considering
that the amount of PNB’sbid is P8,511,000.00, there is clearly an excess in the bid price which PNB must return,
together with the interest computed in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the court in Eastern Shipping
Lines v. Court of Appeals.
6% interest – from the time of filing the complaint
12% interest – once the judgment becomes final and executory.

It must be emphasized, however, that our holding in this case does not preclude PNB from proving and recovering
in a proper proceeding any deficiency in the amount of petitioners’ loan obligation that may have accrued after the
date of the auction sale.