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Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
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PROCEDURE IN THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURTS
Rule 6
KINDS OF PLEADINGS
SECTION 1. Pleadings Defined. Pleadings are the
written statements of the respective claims and
defenses of the parties submitted to the court for
appropriate judgment. (1a)
Actually, we already touched the word “PLEADING” before. In the
Constitution when we were asking what is the basis of the authority of the
Supreme Court to enact the Rules of Court or Procedural Law. The
Constitution says, the Supreme Court shall have the authority to promulgate
Rules on pleadings, practice and procedure. Then we discussed jurisdiction
over the issues. Jurisdiction over the issues is determined by the allegations
in the pleadings.
Q: Define pleadings?
A: PLEADINGS are the written statements of the respective claims and
defenses of the parties submitted to the court for appropriate judgment.
(Section 1)
This is the document where a party will state his claim against the
defendant; or where the defendant will state also his defense. Pleadings
merely tell a story. You tell your story there, the other party will tell his
story.
And how do you assert your claim in court? Not by calling up a judge
over the telephone or writing a letter to the judge, “Dear judge….” but
through the appropriate pleadings. How do they look like? The rules are laid
down. It becomes clearer in the 3rd year subject known as Legal Forms. In
that subject you will study particular forms. They have patterns. In
pleadings, you do it in legal manner. You do not say, “Once upon a time…”
The counterpart of pleadings in criminal procedure is information, or
the criminal complaint where a prosecutor will tell what crime you are being
accused – what you did, time, the victim, etc.
Sec. 2 – Pleadings allowed – The claims of a
party are asserted in a complaint, counterclaim,
cross-claim, third (fourth, etc.) – party complaint, or
complaint-in-intervention.
The defenses of a party are alleged in the
answer to the pleading asserting a claim against him.
An answer may be responded to by a reply. (n)
Section 2 tells us what are the pleadings allowed by the Rules of Court.
In a civil case, there are actually two (2) contending parties: (1) the person
suing or filing claim; and (2) the person being sued.
Q: If you are the claimant or the plaintiff, in what pleading do you
assert your claim?
A: Complaint, counterclaim, cross-claim, third-party complaint or
fourth-party complaint, etc.
These are the different pleadings allowed by the Rules. Of course,
maybe, the only thing that you are familiar with is the complaint. As we go
over the Rules, you will understand what do you mean by those pleadings.
On the other hand, if you are the party sued, you also have to file your
pleading or your defense. It is known as the ANSWER. The defenses of a
party are alleged in the answer to the pleading asserting a claim against
him. If I file a complaint against you, in response, you will file an answer.
In last paragraph, an answer may be responded by a REPLY. I file a
complaint. You file an answer invoking your defenses. If I want to respond
to your defenses, I will file a REPLY.
COMPLAINT ANSWER REPLY
That is the pattern.
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
Q: Summarizing all of them, what are the know pleadings recognized
by the law on Civil Procedure?
A: There are seven (7) types of pleadings:
1.) Complaint;
2.) Answer;
3.) Counterclaim;
4.) Cross-claim;
5.) Reply
6.) Third (Fourth, Fifth, etc.) – Party Complaint;
7.) Complaint-in-Intervention.
Let us go over each one of them. How do they function?
A.) COMPLAINT
Sec. 3. Complaint – The complaint is the
pleading alleging the plaintiff’s cause or causes of
action. The names and residences of the plaintiff and
defendant must be stated in the complaint.
Q: Define complaint.
A: COMPLAINT is the pleading where the plaintiff will allege his cause
or causes of action. A complaint is also called the INITIATORY PLEADING.
Because it is actually the first pleading filed in court. It is the pleading that
starts the ball rolling. It is the pleading that initiates the civil action.
Of course, the names and residences of the defendants must be stated
in the complaint. Do you know the pattern for a complaint?
For EXAMPLE: Mr. Pito wants to sue Mr. Peloton to collect an unpaid
loan. Mr. Peloton borrowed money from Mr. Pito and refused to pay.
Normally, it starts with an introduction: “Plaintiff, through counsel,
respectfully alleges that…” Then it is followed by paragraphs which are
numbered. For instance:
Illustration:
1.) Plaintiff Mr. Pito, of legal age, is a resident of
Matina, Davao City; whereas defendant Mr.
Peloton also of legal age, a resident of Bajada,
Davao City;
2.) On Nov. 7, 1996, defendant secured a loan from
plaintiff the sum of P30,000.00 payable within
one (1) year form said date with legal interest;
3.) The account is already due. Despite repeated
demands, defendant failed to and refused to
pay;
PRAYER
WHEREFORE, it is respectfully prayed
that judgment be rendered against the
defendant ordering him to pay the loan of
P30,000.00 and interest in favor of the plaintiff.
It is simple. The complaint is composed of 3 paragraphs only –
humiram siya ng pera, ayaw magbayad. That’s all. That is the pattern of a
complaint. Your allegations must contain the four (4) elements of a Cause of
Action – the Right, the Obligation, the Delict or Wrong or Violation of Your
Right, and the Damage. Hindi kailangang mahaba ang complaint.
It becomes clearer in the subject of Legal Forms. That is the last
subject in the Bar Exam, Legal Ethics & Practical Exercises. The examinee will
be asked, for instance, to prepare a Contract of Mortgage, or prepare a
Complaint for Unlawful Detainer. There are hundreds of forms and you
must be prepared to write down a sample.
B.) ANSWER
Sec. 4 – Answer – An answer is a pleading in
which a defending party sets forth his defenses. (4a)
I am the plaintiff. I file the complaint. You received the complaint. You
are now required to respond.
Q: What is the pleading where you respond?
A: It is called the ANSWER. That is where you will state your defenses.
That is why an ANSWER is called a Responsive Pleading.
Q: Why is it called “Responsive Pleading”?
A: Because it is the pleading which is filed in response to the
complaint. It is where you respond to the cause of action. That is where you
state your defenses.
It is something which is not found in Criminal Procedure. A: NO, there
is no such thing as Answer in Criminal Procedure.
Q: If you are charged with a crime, how do you answer?
A: By pleading guilty or not guilty. That is the answer. When you plead
guilty, tapos na! If you say not guilty, trial will proceed. No writing of
defenses. No written answer in criminal cases. It (pleadings) only applies to
civil cases where you allege your defenses.
Q: What are the defenses under the Rules?
A: That is Section 5.
Sec. 5 – Defenses – Defenses may either be
negative or affirmative.
A NEGATIVE DEFENSE – is the specific denial of
the material fact or facts alleged in the pleading of
the claimant essential to his cause or causes of
action.
An AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSE – is an allegation of
a new matter which, while hypothetically admitting
the material allegations in the pleading of the
claimant, would nevertheless prevent or bar
recovery by him.
Defenses may either be negative or affirmative.
b.) Answer; NEGATIVE DEFENSES;
Q: Define an NEGATIVE defense.
A: Paragraph [a]: Briefly, it is a defense of specific denial where you
deny the statement in the complaint and you state the facts and the
reason/s on which your denial is based. In a negative defense, the
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
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defendant specifically denies a material fact or facts alleged in the pleading
of the claimant essential to his cause of action.
EXAMPLE: The complaint says in paragraph 2, “On November 6, 1996,
defendant secured a loan from plaintiff in the amount of P30,000.00
payable one (1) year from November 6, 1996. The defendant will say in his
answer:
“Defendant specifically denies the allegation in
Paragraph 2 of the complaint. The truth of the matter being
he never secured any loan from plaintiff because he does
not even know the plaintiff and he did not see his face
before.”
That is a negative defense. You said I borrowed money from you. “No,
I don’t even know you. I have not seen you before.” He denies the
existence of the loan. That is known as the negative defense. It is a denial of
a material fact which constitutes the plaintiff’s cause of action. That’s why it
is briefly called a “Defense of Specific Denial”.
b.) Answer; AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES
Q: Define an AFFIRMATIVE defense.
A: In paragraph (b), it is briefly called a defense of confession and
avoidance because, while the defendant may admit the material allegation
in the complaint, however, he will plead a new matter which will prevent a
recovery by the plaintiff. I admit what you are saying in the complaint but
still you are not entitled to recover from me.
EXAMPLE: The defendant may admit what you are saying in your
complaint. I borrowed money from you – admitted! The account is due –
admitted! I have not paid you – admitted. “However, you cannot collect
from me because the account has already prescribed.” Meaning, I will
admit what you are saying but just the same, I am not liable. Kaya nga, you
confess, eh. I confess to what you say but I still avoid liability.
Examples of affirmative defenses are: fraud, statute of limitations,
release, payment, illegality, statute of frauds, estoppel, former recovery,
discharge in bankruptcy, and any other matter by way of confession and
avoidance.
Suppose, you sue me for damages arising from breach of contract. I
admit I entered into a contract but I have no obligation to comply because
the contract is null and void. Or, the contract is illegal. Or, the stipulation is
contrary to public policy, therefore, I am not bound. I admit what you say
but I am not liable because of the illegality of the subject matter of the
contract.
Or, you sue me because according to you, I entered into a contract and
I refused to comply. So, you file a case against me for specific performance
or for damages. Then I say: “It’s true that I entered into a contract with
you. It’s true I did not comply. But there is nothing you can do because the
contract is oral and the contract is covered by the statute of frauds. In order
to be enforceable, we should have reduced it into writing. Since we never
reduced it into writing, I am not bound to comply.”
c.) COUNTERCLAIMS
Sec. 6. Counterclaim. - A counterclaim is any
claim which a defending party may have against an
opposing party. (6a)
EXAMPLE: You file a case against me for damages to your car.
According to you in your complaint, while you were driving your car along
the highway carefully. I came along driving recklessly and bumped your car
causing damages amounting to P50,000.00 for repair. Your allegation is
based on negligence on my part.
My answer is denial: “That is not true! I deny that! I was the one
driving carefully and you were driving carelessly and negligently. Therefore,
if you are the proximate cause of the accident, I’m not liable for the damage
of your car.” That’s my answer – I’m not liable because you are negligent.
Because you were the one negligent, my car was also damaged. I am not
liable for the damage on your car. As a matter of fact, you are the one that
should be held liable to pay for the damage of my car. I am now claiming for
the damage of P50,000.00. That is called COUNTERCLAIM.
According to a lawyer who is fluent in Cebuano, he called it balos. He
was explaining to his client that they have counterclaim. That’s a legal term,
eh.
Therefore, there is one civil case but there are two (2) causes involved
– the main cause of action in the complaint and that in the counterclaim.
There are two (2) issues to be resolved by the court.
Q: If your complaint against me is to recover a sum of money, should
my counterclaim also involve recovery of sum of money?
A: NO. There is no such rule that these two (2) cases should be similar
in nature. (De Borja vs. De Borja, 101 Phil. 911) It is possible for you to file
case for recovery of a piece of land and my counterclaim is recovery of
damages arising from a vehicular accident.
Q: Suppose your claim against me is One (1) Million, is it possible that
my counterclaim against you is Two (2) Million?
A: YES. There is no rule which limits my counterclaim to the same
amount you are claiming. A counterclaim need not diminish or defeat the
recovery sought by the opposing party, but may claim relief exceeding in
amount or different I kind from that sought by the opposing party. (De Borja
vs. De Borja, 101 Phil. 911)
Q: You file a case against me for recovery of unpaid loan. My
counterclaim is, rescission of partnership contract. Is the counterclaim
proper?
A: Yes although there is no connection between what you are asking
and what my answer is. But what is important is tayong dalawa ang
naglalaban. If you will not allow me to file my counterclaim against you,
that will be another case in the future. Since nandito na rin tayo, so lahat ng
ating reklamo, we might as well have to finish it. That is allowed.
Q: Why is it that law allows the defendant to counter sue by way of
counterclaim the plaintiff?
A: The purpose there is apparently TO AVOID MULTIPLICITY OF SUITS.
If you have a cause of action against me, I will sue you, in the future it will
also lead to another case where you will also sue me.
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DEBORJA vs. DEBORJA
101 Phil 911
FACTS: A died, of course, what survives after that is
the estate. X was appointed as administrator or legal
representative. W owes a sum of money to the estate of A
and X filed a case against W to collect the unpaid loan. X is
called the REPRESENTATIVE PARTY under Rule 3, Section 3.
W filed an answer and that W has a claim against X. W filed
a counterclaim against X in the case.
HELD: The counterclaim is improper. When X sued W,
X is not suing in his own personal capacity. He is acting as
administrator of the estate of A. The real plaintiff is the
estate of A. X is just the legal representative. Therefore,
you cannot file a counterclaim against X in the latter’s
personal capacity when X is suing W in a representative
capacity.
The SC said that the plaintiff should be sued in a counterclaim in the
SAME CAPACITY that he is suing the defendant. That’s a principle to
remember.
PERMISSIVE & COMPULSORY COUNTERCLAIMS
Sec. 7 – Compulsory counterclaim – A
compulsory counterclaim is one which, being
cognizable by the regular courts of justice, arises out
of or is connected with the transaction or occurrence
constituting the subject matter of the opposing
party’s claim and does not require for its
adjudication the presence of third parties of who the
court cannot acquire jurisdiction. Such a
counterclaim must be within the jurisdiction of the
court both as to the amount and the nature thereof,
except that in the original action before the Regional
Trial Court, the counterclaim may be considered
compulsory.
Under the Rules, there are two types of counterclaim. 1)
COMPULSORY COUNTERCLAIM and, 2) PERMISSIVE COUNTERCLAIM.
Q: How do you distinguish one from the other? When is a
counterclaim compulsory and when is it permissive?
A: The ELEMENTS of a COMPULSORY COUNTERCLAIM are found in
Section 7. If we will outline Section 7, we will see that a counterclaim is
compulsory if the following requisites are present:
1.) It is cognizable by the regular courts of justice;
2.) It arises out of or it is connected with a transaction or occurrence
constituting a subject matter of the opposing party’s claim;
3.) It does not require for its adjudication the presence of third
parties of who the court cannot acquire jurisdiction;
4.) It must be within the jurisdiction of the court, both as to the
amount and the nature thereof, except that in an original action
before the RTC, the counterclaim may be considered compulsory
regardless of the amount; and
5.) The defending party has a counterclaim at the time he files his
answer.
The fifth requisite is not found in Section 7 but in Rule 11, Section 8:
Rule 11, Sec. 8. Existing counterclaim or cross-
claim. - A compulsory counterclaim or a cross-claim
that a defending party has at the time he files his
answer shall be contained therein. (8a, R6)
Another way of saying it is, the counterclaim has already matured at
the time he files his answer. That is the fifth requisite.
Q: What happens if one of these requisites is missing?
A: If one of the five requisites is missing, the counterclaim is
permissive in nature.
We will discuss the elements of a compulsory counterclaim one by
one.
First Element: A COUNTERCLAIM TO BE COMPULSORY MUST BE
COGNIZABLE BY THE REGULAR COURTS.
In other words, if you file a complaint against me and I have a
counterclaim against you in the Labor Code, then it cannot be classified as a
compulsory claim because how can I invoke against you a claim which is
cognizable by the NLRC before the RTC?
Second Element: IT ARISES OUT OF OR IT IS
CONNECTED WITH A TRANSACTION OR OCCURRENCE
CONSTITUTING A SUBJECT MATTER OF THE
OPPOSING PARTY’S CLAIM
The second requisite is the most important. A counterclaim, to be
compulsory, must arise out of or connected with the transaction or
occurrence constituting a subject matter of the opposing party concerned. It
must arise out of or is connected with a transaction or occurrence
constituting a subject matter of the opposing party’s claim. It must be
logically related to the subject matter of the main action.
So the rule is, if the counterclaim did not arise out of or is not
connected with the transaction or occurrence constituting the subject
matter of the opposing party’s concern, the counterclaim must be
permissive in nature.
PROBLEM: Emily filed a case against Regina for damages arising from
a vehicle collision. According to Emily, the case of the accident is the
negligence of the defendant in driving her car. Her car bumped the car of
Emily and was damaged. So, Emily is holding Regina liable for the damage
on her car. Regina denied that she was negligent. According to Regina, “No,
I am not negligent. As a matter of fact, you (Emily) were the one negligent,
and because of that negligence, my car was also damaged. So you should be
the one to pay damages.” Parang ganyan ba.
Q: Is the counterclaim of Regina arising out of or is connected with the
transaction or occurrence constituting the subject matter of the opposing
party?
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
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A: YES because we are talking of the same bumping. You bumped my
car, you say I bumped your car. So we are talking of the same event or
transaction.
PROBLEM: Thea G. (as in ‘Gamay’) files a case against me for recovery
of a piece of land. According to her, she is the owner of the land which I’m
occupying. Now, I file my answer, and then I said, “Ms. Guadalope, I spent a
lot of money for necessary expenses to preserve the land. You are also liable
to reimburse me for the necessary improvements expenses I introduced on
the land.” Under the law on Property, a defendant or possessor is entitled
to reimbursement for necessary improvements and expenses. So she is
trying to recover the piece of land, I am now asking her to reimburse me for
all necessary expenses that I spent on the land.
Q: Is my counterclaim arising out of or connected with the subject
matter of your claim or not?
A: YES. We are talking of the same subject matter. Thus, the
counterclaim is compulsory.
PROBLEM: Thea G. files a case against me for recovery of a piece of
land. My counterclaim against her is damages arising from a vehicular
collision.
Q: Is my counterclaim arising out of a subject matter of your action?
A: NO. It is completely different. Thus, that is a permissive
counterclaim.
So, those are the examples. That is why, the second requisite is the
most important element – a counterclaim must arise out of or is connected
with the subject matter or a transaction or the event or the main action. By
the way, the second element is considered the most important element of
compulsory counterclaim because according to the SC in the 1992 case of
MELITON vs. COURT OF APPEALS
216 SCRA 485
HELD: “It has been postulated that while a number of
criteria have been advanced for the determination of
whether the counterclaim is compulsory or permissive, the
one compelling test of compulsoriness is the logical
relationship between the claim alleged in the complaint
and that in the counterclaim, that is, where conducting
separate trials of the respective claims of the parties would
entail a substantial duplication of effort and time, as where
they involve many of the same factual and/or legal issues.”
Q: What is the importance of determining whether the claim is
compulsory or permissive?
A: A compulsory counterclaim must be invoked in the same action. Iit
cannot be the subject matter of a separate action. Unlike in permissive
where you have the choice of invoking it in the same case, or in a separate
action, compulsory counterclaim must be invoked in the same action
otherwise it will be barred. That is found in Rule 9, Section 2:
Rule 9, Sec. 2. Compulsory counterclaim, or
cross-claim, not set up barred. - A compulsory
counter-claim or a cross-claim, not set up shall be
barred. (4a)
So if I do not file a counterclaim against you in the same action, under
Rule 9, the counterclaim is barred forever. I cannot claim it against you in
any other case in the future. But if the counterclaim is permissive and I will
not raise it as a counterclaim, it is not barred. It can still be invoked in
another case against you. It can be a subject matter of a separate action.
Let us try to apply that principle to the case cited.
PROBLEM: Vanessa files a case against me for damages arising from
vehicular collision. Her car is damaged, my car is damaged. In my answer, I
denied negligence but I did not claim from her the damage to my vehicle.
After the trial, court found the plaintiff at fault. So, the complaint of Vanessa
was dismissed. So panalo ako. Balikan ko siya ngayon. This time I will file a
case against her to recover damages for the damage to my car since I was
able to prove that she was negligent and not me.
Q: What will happen to my case now?
A: My case will be dismissed because I did not raise that cause of
action as a counterclaim. Compulsory yan eh. So since you did not raise, is
barred forever.
PROBLEM: Aileen files a case against me for recovery of a piece of
land. After trial, talo ako. The court said that I should return the land to her.
So isinauli ko na. Ngayon, kailangan bayaran niya naman ako for the
necessary expenses. So, I will file a case against her. She moved to dismiss –
barred, because I should have raised that as a counterclaim. I cannot file
another case involving that cause of action. That is the effect of failure to
raise the compulsory counterclaim in the case filed against you.
PROBLEM: Now, suppose the counterclaim is PERMISSIVE. Pauline files
case against me for recovery of land. My cause of action against her is
damages arising against a vehicular collision. Obviously, the counterclaim is
permissive.
Q: Is the counterclaim allowed?
A: Yes, allowed.
Q: Pauline will file a case against me for damages arising from
vehicular collision. My decision is not to file a counterclaim but to file
another case against her. Is that allowed?
A: Yes, that is allowed. Meaning, I may or may not raise it as a
counterclaim because it is permissive. I am permitted to raise it as a
counterclaim but I am not obliged. I may decided to file another action
against you. That is the importance between a compulsory counterclaim
and a permissive counterclaim.
Third Requisite: IT DOES NOT REQUIRE FOR ITS
ADJUDICATION PRESENCE OF THIRD PARTIES OF WHOM THE
COURT CANNOT ACQUIRE JURISDICTION.
Meaning, if my counterclaim against you will involve the presence of
an indispensable party who is, let’s say, abroad, and therefore, the court
cannot acquire jurisdiction over him, and since it involves an indispensable
party, I will not raise it as a counterclaim.
Q: Will it be barred?
A: NO. If I will file my counterclaim, it will involve another party who is
indispensable. The trouble is, he is not around. Therefore, the counterclaim
is not barred because the third element is missing.
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
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Fourth Element: THAT THE COUNTERCLAIM MUST BE
WITHIN THE JURISDICTION OF THE COURT BOTH AS TO THE
AMOUNT AND NATURE THEREOF.
Q: I will file a case against you for forcible entry. I want to recover a
piece of land. Where is the jurisdiction of that case?
A: MTC. Squatting. I will recover a land from a squatter.
Review: In the Law on Property, even if you are a possessor in bad
faith, he is entitled to reimbursement for necessary expenses. The theory
there is, even if he is a possessor in bad faith, the expenses redounded to
the benefit of the land owner. Anyway, you will spend them just the same
as the land owner will have to spend for them. So it will not be fair if he is
not reimbursed. That’s our premise, noh?
PROBLEM: Now, the defendant would like to claim for reimbursement
for the necessary expenses that he spent in my lot. The case I filed against
you is forcible entry in the MTC. Your necessary expenses amount to
P300,000.
Q: Should you raise it as a compulsory counterclaim in the forcible
entry case?
A: NO.
Q: Does it arise out of or connected with the transaction which is the
subject matter of the main action? Why not compulsory?
A: Because the MTC has no jurisdiction over the P300,000 amount for
the necessary expenses. This time, that is the missing element.
Q: How will the defendant claim reimbursement?
A: He has to file with the RTC a case for reimbursement. He cannot
use that as a counterclaim for the forcible entry case because the MTC has
no jurisdiction on a counterclaim where the amount is over P200,000.00.
I will reverse the problem:
PROBLEM: The plaintiff filed against the defendant an action for accion
publiciana – recovery for a piece of land where the value of the property is
P1 million. So the case should be filed in the RTC. Now, the defendant is
claiming for the reimbursement of the improvements thereon (necessary
expenses) amounting to P50,000.
Q: Should the defendant raise that as a counterclaim in the accion
publiciana case?
A: YES.
In the first example, the counterclaim is above the jurisdiction of the
MTC. This time, the amount for the counterclaim is below the jurisdiction of
the RTC. So the RTC can claim jurisdiction.
Q: How can the RTC try a counterclaim when the claim is only
P50,000?
A: It is in accordance with the exception under Section 7: “except that
in an original action before the RTC, the counterclaim may be considered
compulsory regardless of the amount.” This means that the main action is
accion publiciana—RTC. The counterclaim is reimbursement for necessary
expenses with arose out of the same land. Normally, the RTC cannot try that
but the answer to this question is YES.
The RTC can award a claim for damages even though the claim is
below its jurisdiction. The principle is: Since the counterclaim is compulsory,
jurisdiction over the main action automatically carries with it jurisdiction
over the compulsory counterclaim. The compulsory counterclaim is merely
incidental to the main action. Jurisdiction of the RTC over the main action
necessarily carries with it jurisdiction over the compulsory counterclaim
which is merely ancillary.
But the first example is baliktad. If the main action is with the MTC, it
cannot try the counterclaim with the RTC. It is beyond its jurisdiction. It is
not covered by the exception. But if it is the main action which is within the
jurisdiction of the RTC, it can try a counterclaim which is below its
jurisdiction provided it arose out or is connected with the transaction.
That exception is not written in the prior rules but it is a recognized
exception laid down by the SC which is now written down in the law. In the
case of
MACEDA vs. COURT OF APPEALS
176 SCRA 440
HELD: “The jurisdiction of the MTC in a civil action for
sum of money is limited to a demand that does not exceed
P100,000 (now P200,000) exclusive of interest and costs. A
counterclaim beyond its jurisdiction and limit may be
pleaded only by way of defense to weaken the plaintiff’s
claim, but not to obtain affirmative relief.”
Fifth Requisite: THE DEFENDING PARTY HAS A COUNTERCLAIM AT THE
TIME HE FILES HIS ANSWER.
How can I make a claim against you which is not yet existing? Even if
all the other requisites are present, the counterclaim would still not be
compulsory because how can one invoke something now which he can
acquire in the future?
So, those are the five essential elements. You remove one, the
counterclaim becomes permissive.
Q: Again. What is the importance of distinguishing whether the
counterclaim is compulsory or permissive?
A: If the counterclaim is compulsory, the defendant is obliged under
the law to raise it as a counterclaim in the action where he is being sued. If
he fails to invoke it, it is barred forever (Rule 9 Section 2).
If the counterclaim is permissive, the defendant has a choice of raising
it as a counterclaim in the case filed against him or he may decide to file
another action against the plaintiff, raising it as his cause of action. It is
permitted but not obliged.
COUNTERCLAIMS IN CRIMINAL CASES
JAVIER vs. IAC
171 SCRA 605
FACTS: The Javier spouses filed a criminal case
against Leon Gutierrez Jr, under BP 22 or the Bouncing
Check Law, for issuing a bad check. The criminal case was
filed before the RTC of Makati. The complainants did not
reserve the civil action. The implication is that the claim for
civil liability is deemed instituted with the criminal case.
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
Gutierrez in turn filed a civil action for damages
against the Javier spouses in the RTC of Catarman,
Northern Samar, where he accused spouses of having
tricked him into signing the check. According to him,
“because you tricked me into signing the check for which
you are suing me, I’m holding you liable for damages”.
What happened now is that he was being criminally
sued in Makati but defending himself in Catarman,
Northern Samar. He is explaining in the Samar court what
he should be doing in the Makati court.
HELD: The civil case in Samar should be dismissed. It
must be in the Makati court that Gutierrez, as accused in
the criminal charge of violation of BP 22, should explain
why he issued the bouncing check. He should explain that
story in Makati and not in Samar.
This should have been done in the form of a
counterclaim for damages for the alleged deception by the
Javier spouses. In fact, the counterclaim was compulsory
and should have been filed by Gutierrez upon the implied
institution of the civil action for damages in the criminal
case.
What the SC is saying is, since the civil action for damages is impliedly
instituted in the criminal case, and he wants to hold you liable for filing this
case, he should file a counterclaim against you in the criminal case. What is
unique was that for the first time in the Philippine Procedural Law, SC laid
down the rule that there is such thing as a counterclaim in a criminal case,
because, normally, counterclaims are only recognized in civil cases. But
since the civil action is deemed instituted in the criminal case, the accused
can file a counterclaim against the offended party in the criminal action.
The trouble in this ruling is that, it has been subjected to a lot of
criticisms by academicians – professors of Remedial Law, authors – they
criticized the ruling. It provokes more problems than answers. A justice of
the SC remarked, “I think we made a mistake (privately ba) in the Javier
ruling. Kaya it was never repeated.
The SC, in 1997, had another chance to comment on Javier in the case
of—
CABAERO vs. CANTOS
271 SCRA 392, en banc
NOTE: Here, the Javier ruling was set aside.
HELD: “The logic and cogency of Javier
notwithstanding, some reservations and concerns were
voiced out by members of the Court during the
deliberations on the present case. These were engendered
by the obvious lacuna in the Rules of Court, which contains
no express provision for the adjudication of a counterclaim
in a civil action impliedly instituted in a criminal case.”
“By the foregoing discussion, we do not imply any
fault in Javier. The real problem lies in the absence of clear-
cut rules governing the prosecution of impliedly instituted
civil actions and the necessary consequences and
implications thereof. For this reason, the counter-claim of
the accused cannot be tried together with the criminal case
because, as already discussed, it will unnecessarily
complicate and confuse the criminal proceedings. Thus, the
trial court should confine itself to the criminal aspect and
the possible civil liability of the accused arising out of the
crime. The counter-claim (and cross-claim or third party
complaint, if any) should be set aside or refused cognizance
without prejudice to their filing in separate proceedings at
the proper time.”
“At balance, until there are definitive rules of
procedure to govern the institution, prosecution and
resolution of the civil aspect and the consequences and
implications thereof impliedly instituted in a criminal case,
trial courts should limit their jurisdiction to the civil liability
of the accused arising from the criminal case.”
This means SC admitted that the Javier doctrine put more problems
and confusions in the absence of specific rules. The counterclaim should not
be tried together in a criminal case. The trial court should confine itself in
the criminal action and that the counterclaim should be set aside without
prejudice to its right in setting up actions in the civil action.
NOTE: The ruling in the case of CABAERO is now incorporated in the
last paragraph of Section 1, paragraph [a], Rule 111 of the 2000 Revised
Criminal Procedure:
“No counterclaim, cross-claim or third-party
complaint may be filed by the accused in the
criminal case, but any cause of action which could
have been the subject thereof may be litigated in a
separate civil action.”
D.) CROSS-CLAIMS
Sec. 8. Cross-claim. A cross-claim is any claim by
one party against a co-party arising out of the
transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter
either of the original action or of a counterclaim
therein. Such cross-claim may include a claim that
the party against whom it is asserted is or may be
liable to the cross-claimant for all or part of a claim
asserted in the action against the cross-claimant.(7)
A cross claim is a claim by one party against a co-party. It may be a
claim by defendant against his co-defendant arising out of the subject
matter of the main action.
EXAMPLE: Jet and Pao are solidary debtors for the sum of P100,000.
Jet and Pao signed a promissory note in favor of Dean to collect the sum of
P100,000. However, although Jet signed the promissory note, he did not get
a single centavo. Everything went to Pao. Both of them are now sued.
According to Jet, “Actually there is a possibility that I will pay the P100,000
to Dean when actually I did not even get a single centavo out of it.
Everything went to Pao [bwiset!]!” Therefore, Jet will now file a case against
Pao where he will allege that if Jet will be held liable to Dean, Pao will
reimburse him (Jet). So, Jet will also file a claim in the same action against
Pao.
75
Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
Now, the claim filed by Jet against his co-defendant Pao is called a
CROSS-CLAIM where Jet is called defendant in the case filed by Dean and a
cross-claimant against Pao. Pao is also the defendant in the case filed by
Dean and a cross-defendant with respect to the cross-claim filed by Jet. So
that is another case which a defendant is filing against another defendant.
The law says that the “cross-claim arises out of the transaction or
occurrence that is the subject matter of the original action.” In other words,
the cross-claimant will assert that the cross-defendant is liable to him for all
or part of the claim asserted in the main action against the cross-claimant.
Take note that the cross-claim of Jet against Pao is merely an off-short
of the case filed by Dean against Jet and Pao. Meaning, it arises out of the
same transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of the case filed
by Dean against them.
PROBLEM: Suppose Dean files a case against Jet and Pao to collect a
promissory note signed by Jet and Pao. Tapos, sinabi ni Jet in his cross-claim,
“Well, since we are already here, I also have a claim against Pao for
damages arising from a vehicular collision.”
Q: Is the cross-claim allowed in the problem?
A: NO. The cross-claim is improper. It has no connection with the
complaint of Dean against Jet and Pao. A counter-claim must always arise
out of a transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of the main
action.
BAR QUESTION: Distinguish a COUNTERCLAIM from a CROSS-CLAIM.
A: The following are the distinctions:
1.) A COUNTERCLAIM is a complaint by the defendant against
the plaintiff, whereas,
A CROSS-CLAIM is a claim by a defendant against a co-
defendant;
2.) The life of the CROSS-CLAIM depends on the life of the
main action. A cross-claim is merely a consequence of
the case filed by the plaintiff against the defendants.
No main action, no cross-claim (RUIZ, JR. vs. CA,
infra). Whereas,
In a COUNTERCLAIM, you can kill the main action, still the
counterclaim survives.
3.) A COUNTERCLAIM may be asserted whether or not it arises
out of the same transaction or occurrence that is the
subject matter of the action, whereas,
A CROSS-CLAIM must always arise out of the same
transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of
the action.
Example: Pao case filed against Jet to
collect a loan. Jet files a COUNTERCLAIM against
Pao to recover a piece of land. That is allowed
and that is a permissive counterclaim. But
suppose Dean files a case to collect a loan
against Jet and Pao. Jet files a CROSS-CLAIM
against Pao to recover a piece of land.
Q: Will it be allowed?
A: Not allowed! It has no connection with
the subject matter of the main action.
Take note that a cross-claim is any claim by one party against a co-
party arising out of the transaction of occurrence that is the subject matter
of the original action or of a counterclaim therein. So, a cross-claim may
arise our either of the original action or counter-claim therein.
EXAMPLE: Jet and Pao file a case against Dean. Dean files his answer
with a counterclaim against the plaintiffs Jet and Pao. So Jet and Pao will
now become defendants with respect to the counterclaim filed by Dean. So
Jet now can file a cross-claim against Pao arising out of the counterclaim. So
this is an example of a plaintiff filing a cross-claim against his co-plaintiff
because of the counterclaim.
HYPOTHETICAL EXAMPLE:
1.) Mortz and Charles, plaintiffs, filed a case against Jet and Pao,
defendants. There are two plaintiffs suing two different
defendants on a promissory note. Both Jet and Pao signed the
promissory note in favor of Mortz and Charles:
COMPLAINT (Collection case – Main Action):
MORTZ and CHARLES [total: 785 lbs.], plaintiffs
-versus-
JET and PAO, defendants
2.) Now, according to Jet, every centavo of the loan went to Pao. So
Jet files a cross-claim against Pao:
CROSS-CLAIM ON THE MAIN ACTION
Defendant JET [feather weight], now cross-claimant
-versus-
Defendant PAO [heavy weight], now cross-defendant
3.) Jet also says, “Actually may reklamo ako sa inyong dalawa (Mortz
and Charles) because you entered my land and gathered some of
its product [mga patay gutom!!]”. Nag-file siya ng counterclaim
against both Mortz and Charles. In the counter-claim of Jet, ang
defendants ay si Mortz and Charles for the accounting of the
improvements on the land:
COUNTERCLAIM OF JET
Defendant JET, now plaintiff
-versus-
Plaintiffs MORTZ and CHARLES, now co-defendants
4.) Mortz now will answer the counterclaim of Jet, “Actually, the
damages on land was not caused by me. Si Charles man ang may
kasalanan ba! Yun ang patay gutom!!” So Mortz files a cross-
claim against co-plaintiff Charles arising out to the counterclaim
of Jet:
CROSS-CLAIM ARISING FROM THE COUNTERCLAIM OF JET
Plaintiff MORTZ, now cross-claimant
-versus-
Plaintiff CHARLES, now cross-defendant
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
5.) Now, according to Pao, “Actually last month, a car owned by
both of you (Mortz and Charles) bumped my car and that my car
was damaged.” So, nag-file naman si Pao ng counterclaim against
Mortz and Charles for the damage of the car.
COUNTERCLAIM OF PAO
Defendant PAO, now plaintiff
-versus-
Plaintiffs MORTZ and CHARLES, now defendants
6.) Sabi ni Charles, “I’m not the owner of the car. Si Mortz ang
owner. Gago!” So cross-claim naman siya (Charles) kay Mortz:
CROSS-CLAIM ARISING FROM THE COUNTERCLAIM OF PAO
Plaintiff CHARLES, now cross-claimant
-versus-
Plaintiff MORTZ, now cross-defendant
Ilan lahat ang kaso? There are six (6) cases which are to be decided in
the same action. This rarely happens, but it is possible under the rules. The
obvious PURPOSE of these is to avoid multiplicity of suits and toward these
ends. According to the SC, the rules allow in a certain cases and even
compel a petitioner to combine in one litigation these conflicting claims
most particularly when they arise out of the same transaction. The rule does
not only allow a permissive counterclaim but the parties are even compelled
to raise them in a compulsory counter-claim.
RUIZ, JR. vs. COURT OF APPEALS
212 SCRA 660
FACTS: Dean files a case against Jet and Pao. Jet files a
cross-claim against Pao. After a while, the case against Jet
and Pao was dismissed.
ISSUE: What happens to the cross-claim of Jet against
Pao?
HELD: When the main action was dismissed, the
cross-action must also be dismissed. The life of a cross-
claim depends on the life of the main action. If the main
action is dismissed, the cross-claim will have to be
automatically dismissed.
“A cross-claim could not be the subject of
independent adjudication once it lost the nexus upon which
its life depended. The cross-claimants cannot claim more
rights than the plaintiffs themselves, on whose cause of
action the cross-claim depended. The dismissal of the
complaint divested the cross-claimants of whatever
appealable interest they might have had before and also
made the cross-claim itself no longer viable”
Whereas, the counterclaim can exist alone without the complaint.
EXAMPLE: Pao filed a case against Jet for the recovery of a piece of
land. Jet’s counterclaim is damages arising from a vehicular accident. Na-
dismiss ang kaso ni Pao – wala na yung recovery of a piece of land. The
counterclaim of Jet can still remain alive even if the main action is dead.
But in a cross-claim, once the main action is dead, the cross-claim is
also automatically dead too. What is there to reimburse when the
complainant has been dismissed? Aber?!
COUNTER COUNTERCLAIM and COUNTER CROSS-CLAIM
Sec. 9. Counter-counterclaims and counter-
cross-claims. A counterclaim may be asserted against
an original counter-claimant.
A cross-claim may also be filed against an
original cross-claimant.(n)
Section 9 is a new provision. There is such a thing as counter-
counterclaim and counter-cross-claim. The concept of counter-counter-
claim is not new. As a matter of fact, that was asked in the bar years ago.
EXAMPLE: Chams filed against you an action to collect a loan. You filed
a counterclaim against her to recover a piece of land. Of course, she have to
answer your counterclaim. But she will say, “Actually you have been
molesting me with your claim when actually you have no right over my
land.” So, nag-file siya ng injunction to stop you from molesting her. In other
words, based on your counter-claim against her to recover my land, she will
file a counterclaim to stop you from molesting her. In effect, there is
counter-claim to a counter-claim.
COUNTER-CROSS-CLAIM. Nag cross-claim ka sa akin, mag cross-claim
din ako sa iyo.
E.) REPLY
Sec. 10. Reply. A reply is a pleading, the office
or function of which is to deny, or allege facts in
denial or avoidance of new matters alleged by way
of defense in the answer and thereby join or make
issue as to such new matters. If a party does not file
such reply, all the new matters alleged in the answer
are deemed controverted.
If the plaintiff wishes to interpose any claims
arising out of the new matters so alleged, such
claims shall be set forth in an amended or
supplemental complaint.(11)
ILLUSTRATION: Plaintiff files a complaint against a defendant to collect
an unpaid loan. D files his answer and raises a new matter, affirmative
defense. According to the defendant, the obligation is already paid. Plaintiff
said that you have paid the other loan. In other words, the plaintiff would
like to deny or dispute the defendant’s affirmative defense of payment.
Q: Can I file a pleading to dispute your defense?
A: Yes, that pleading is called a REPLY.
Q: How do you classify a reply?
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
A: It is a responsive pleading because it is the response of the
plaintiff to the affirmative defense raised in the defendant’s answer.
An answer is a response to the complaint and the reply is a response
to the answer.
Q: Halimbawa, you would like to answer my reply, what pleading
would you file?
A: None. That is the last pleading. Otherwise, walang katapusan and
pleading natin. So, reply is considered as the last pleading.
Q: Suppose I filed a complaint, you filed an answer invoking payment. I
failed to reply. What is the effect if the plaintiff fails to reply? Is he admitting
the correctness of the defense?
A: No. The failure to file a reply has no effect. Section 10 says that if
a party does file such reply, all the new matters alleged in the answer are
deemed controverted. Meaning, all the affirmative defenses raised in the
answers are automatically denied.
So, whether you file a reply or not, the defenses are deemed
automatically disputed. The filing of a reply is OPTIONAL.
A reply should not be confused with the answer to a counterclaim
which is also filed by the plaintiff.
Q: Give the distinctions between ANSWER TO COUNTER-CLAIM and
REPLY.
A: The following:
1.) A REPLY is a response to the defenses interposed by the
defendant in his answer, whereas
An ANSWER TO A COUNTERCLAIM is a response to a cause
of action by the defendant against the plaintiff;
2.) The filing of a REPLY is generally optional, whereas
The filing of an ANSWER TO A COUNTERCLAIM is generally
mandatory under Rule 11 because if the plaintiff fails
to file an answer to the counterclaim, he will be
declared in default on the counterclaim.
OUTLINE OF FLOW OF PLEADINGS
F. THIRD (FOURTH, ETC.) – PARTY COMPLAINT
Sec. 11. Third, (fourth, etc.) - party complaint. A
third (fourth, etc.) party complaint is a claim that a
defending party may, with leave of court, file against
a person not a party to the action, called the third
(fourth, etc.) party defendant, for contribution,
indemnity, subrogation or any other relief, in respect
of his opponent's claim. (12a)
THIRD PARTY COMPLAINT is the procedure for bringing into a case a
third person who is not a party to the case.
So, plaintiff files a case against the defendant. Defendant believes that
a stranger or somebody else should be brought into the case and therefore
files a motion in court that he be allowed to file a third-party complaint
against such person and therefore the defendant is called third party
plaintiff and that third person is a third-party defendant.
EXAMPLE : A plaintiff files a case against a defendant to collect a loan
when there are two debtors and one of them is compelled to pay everything
so the defendant will drag into the picture the co-debtor for contribution or
indemnity. Well, you already learned if there are two of them all he has to
do is to file a cross-claim against his co-defendant. BUT since he is the only
one, the remedy is to avail of Section 11.
Take note that filing a third-party complaint is not a matter of right.
THERE MUST BE LEAVE OF COURT. So unlike counterclaim or cross-claim,
you do not need any motion or leave of court. Just file your answer to the
counterclaim of cross-claim and that will do, but not a third-party
complaint.
The purpose of third-party complaint is for contribution, indemnity,
subrogation and other relief in respect of his opponent’s claim.
That is why there is a close relationship between a cross-claim and a
third-party complaint because a cross-claim must also be arising out of the
subject matter of the main action. A third-party complaint must be also
related to the main action. It cannot be a cause of action which has no
relation to the main action.
EXAMPLE: The plaintiff files a case against the surety and the principal
debtor, so both of them are defendants, and the surety seeks
reimbursement for whatever amount he may be compelled to pay the
plaintiff. What kind of pleading would he file against his co-defendant (the
principal debtor)? CROSS-CLAIM.
BUT if the plaintiff file a case ONLY against the surety, because anyway
the principal debtor is not an indispensable party and the surety would like
to seek reimbursement from the person who benefited from the loan, he
cannot file a cross-claim against anybody because he is the lone defendant.
It is possible for him to just file an answer . If he loses and pays the plaintiff,
then he will file another case against the principal debtor for
reimbursement.
But if he wants everything to be resolved in the same case, what kind
pleading will he file? He must resort a THIRD-PARTY COMPLAINT and
implead the principal debtor.
The PURPOSE of a third-party complaint is for the third party plaintiff
to ask the third party defendant for:
1.) Contribution;
2.) Indemnity;
3.) Subrogation; or
4.) any other relief in respect to the opponent’s claim.
78
Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
CONTRIBUTION:
Example #1: Two debtors borrowed P100,000 from Janis (creditor) and
they shared the money 50-50. When the debt fell due, the creditor filed a
case against one of them. So, one of them is being made to pay the
P100,000. Not only his share but also his co-solidary debtor. So if I am the
one liable when actually my real liability is only 50,000. What will I do? I will
file a third party complaint against my co-debtor for contribution.
Example #2: If Andrew and Carlo are guilty of a quasi-delict and the
injured party files an action for damages against Andrew only, Andrew may
file a third-party complaint against Carlo for contribution, their liability
being solidary (Article 2194, New Civil Code)
INDEMNIFICATION:
Example #1: Two people signed a promissory note in favor of the
creditor. But actually the entire amount went to you and none for me.
When the note fell due, I was the one sued. So I will file a third-party
complaint against you for indemnity. You have to return to me every
centavo that I will pay the creditor.
Example #2: A surety sued for recovery of debt by the creditor may file
a third-party complaint against the principal debtor for indemnity. (Article
2047, New Civil Code)
SUBROGATION:
Subrogation - You step into the shoes of someone else. Your
obligation is transferred to me.
EXAMPLE: Where a contract is leased by a lessee and he subleased the
property to a third person who is now occupying the property. In effect, the
sub-lessee stepped into the shoes of the original lessee. If the property is
damaged and the lessor sues the lessee for damages to his leased property,
the lessee or sub-lessor can file a third-party complaint and have the sub-
lessee for subrogation because actually, you stepped into the shoes when
you occupied the leased property. (Articles 1651 and 1654, New Civil Code)
For ANY OTHER RELIEF IN RESPECT TO THE OPPONENTS CLAIM, very
broad:
EXAMPLE: When I buy the property of Mr. Cruz and after a while, here
comes Mr. Dee filing a case against me to claim ownership of the land. But I
bought it from Mr. Cruz who warranted that he is the real owner. So I will
now file third-party complaint against Mr. Cruz to enforce his warranty –
warranty against eviction. (Article 1548, New Civil Code)
Take note that there is always a connection between the main
complaint and the third-party complaint because the condition is
“contribution, indemnification, subrogation and any other relief in respect
to your opponents claim.” There is always a relation between the third
party-complaint and the main complaint against you. Here is a bar
question...
BAR QUESTION: Janis files a case against Nudj to recover an unpaid
load. Now the reason is that Carlo also owes Nudj. Nudj says, “I cannot pay
you because there is a person who has also utang to me. What I will pay
you depends on his payment to me.” File agad si Nudj ng third-party
complaint against Carlo. Is the third-party complaint proper?
A: NO. There is no connection between the main action and the 3rd-
party complaint – the loan of Nudj to Janis and the loan of Andrew to Nudj.
Walang connection. Anong pakialam ni Janis sa utang ni Andrew kay Nudj?
Not in respect to his opponent’s claim.
BAR QUESTION: How do you determine whether a 3rd-party complaint
is proper or improper? What are the tests to determine its propriety?
A: Case of
CAPAYAS vs. COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE
77 PHIL. 181
HELD: There are four (4) possible tests to determine the
propriety of a third-party complaint. In order for it to be
allowed, it must pass one of them. That is the reason when you
file it, you need the permission of the court to determine
whether it is proper or not and the original plaintiff may object
to the propriety of the third-party complaint.
There are the FOUR TESTS (any one will do):
1. A third-party complaint is proper if it arises out of the same
transaction on which plaintiff is based;
EXAMPLE: A creditor sued only one solidary
debtor. So you can file a third-party complaint for
contribution. Anyway, there is only one loan and our
liability arises out of the same promissory note
2. A third-party complaint is proper if the third-party’s
complaint, although arising out of another transaction, is
connected with the plaintiff’s claim.
EXAMPLE: The car owner is sued for culpa
aquiliana for damages arising from vehicular collision
and he files a third-party complaint against the
insurance company for indemnity based on the
contract of insurance. So it is connected with
plaintiff’s claim, and that is precisely the purpose of
my insurance coverage.
3. Third party defendant would be liable to the original
plaintiff's claim. Although the third party defendant's
liability arises out of another transaction.
EXAMPLE: Sublease. Roy leased his property to
Eric. Eric subleased it to Rudolph. If Roy’s property is
damaged, Roy will sue Eric. But Eric will also sue
Rudolph. The sub-lessor has the right to file a third-
party complaint against the sub-lessee for the
damaged leased property which is now occupied by
79
Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
the sub-lessee. The third-party defendant Rudolph
would be liable to plaintiff’s (Roy’s) claim. Rudolph
will be liable to Roy for Roy’s claim against Eric
although the liability of Rudolph arises out of another
transaction (Sub-lease contract)
4. The third party defendant may assert any defense which
the third party plaintiff has or may have against plaintiff’s
claim.
EXAMPLE: Tato is a registered owner of a car
and then sold it to Philip. Philip is the actual owner.
However, Philip did not register the sale to the LTO.
The registered owner is si Tato lang gihapon although
he is no longer the real owner. While Philip was
driving that car it bumped the car of Lewee Tanduay.
Lewee researched the owner of the car at LTO and
ang lumabas ay si Tato. So ang ginawa ni Lewee, ang
kinasuhan nya ay si Tato na walang malay...under the
law, the registered owner is liable. Of course, when
Tato got the complaint, “Wala akong alam sa sinasabi
nyo, that car is no longer mine. I sold that two years
ago, I have no idea what happened.”
So obviously, Tato arrived at the conclusion that
si Philip and nakabangga. Tato filed a third-party
complaint against Philip because he is the real owner.
When Philip got the third-party complaint, and
because he knows the story, in fact he was the one
driving, ang ginawa niya, nilabanan niya ng diretso si
Lewee. Meaning, instead of Tato fighting Lewee,
Philip fought Lewee directly. Frontal na ba. Sabi ni
Philip, “I was not at fault, you (Lewee) are at fault.”
So here is a situation where Lewee sues Tato, Tato
sues Philip but Philip fights Lewee, as if he is the real
defendant, then the third party complaint must be
proper. It must be related.
So those are the samples of third party complaint which are correct.
Take note that there is a close similarity between a third-party
complaint and a cross-claim because as we have learned, a cross-claim
must also be related to the same action. So we will go to some interesting
case on third-party complaint.
SAMALA vs. VICTOR
170 SCRA 453
FACTS: This case involves a vehicular accident. Philip,
while riding on a passenger jeep owned by Tato, the jeep
was bumped by the truck of Lewee, injuring Philip. Philip
filed a case for damages arising from breach of contract
against Tato. Tato filed a third-party complaint against
Lewee. After trial, the court found that Tato has not at
fault. The fault is entirely against Lewee . So the action
against Tato was dismissed, but the court held that Lewee
be directly liable to Philip.
It was questioned by Lewee. Lewee claims that is
should be Tato who is liable to Philip because Philip did not
sue me (Lewee), “Bakit ako ang ma-liable hindi naman ako
ang dinemanda ni Philip? So procedurally, I am liable to
Tato, Tato is liable to Philip.”
ISSUE #1: Can Lewee, a third-party defendant, be held
liable directly to Philip, the original plaintiff?
HELD: YES, that is possible. In a third-party complaint,
normally Lewee is liable to Tato. But Lewee can be made
liable to Philip, or Lewee can be made liable to both Philip
and Tato because that is covered by the phrase “OR ANY
OTHER RELIEF” – so broad that it cover a direct liability of a
third party defendant to the original plaintiff.
ISSUE #2: How can the court award damages to Philip
based on the theory of culpa aquiliana when his complaint
is based on culpa contractual? Can Lewee be held liable for
culpa-contractual?
HELD: YES. That is also possible because “the primary
purpose of this rule is to avoid circuitry of action and to
dispose of in one litigation, the entire subject matter arising
from a particular set of fact it is immaterial that the third-
party plaintiff asserts a cause of action against the third
party defendant on a theory different from that asserted by
the plaintiff against the defendant. It has likewise been
held that a defendant in a contract action may join as third-
party defendants those liable to him in tort for the
plaintiff’s claim against him or directly to the plaintiff.”
Another interesting case which is to be compared with the
abovementioned case is the 1989 case of
SHAFER vs. JUDGE OF RTC OF OLONGAPO CITY
167 SCRA 386
NOTE: This case although it refers to third-party
complaint is related to criminal procedure. This is similar
to the case of JAVIER where the issue is, is there such a
thing as a counterclaim in a criminal case where the
offended party did not make a reservation. In SHAFER, is
there such a thing as a third-party complaint in a criminal
case?
FACTS: Shafer while driving his car covered by TPL,
bumped another car driven by T. T filed a criminal case
against S for physical injuries arising from reckless
imprudence. T did not make any reservation to file a
separate civil action. So obviously, the claim for civil liability
is deemed instituted.
Shafer was covered by the insurance, so he filed a
third-party complaint against the insurance company
insofar as the civil liability is concerned. The insurance
company questioned the propriety of d third-party
complaint in a criminal case, because according to the
insurance company, the third-party complaint is entirely
different from the criminal liability.
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Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
ISSUE: Whether or not the filing of a third-party
complaint in a criminal case is procedurally correct.
HELD: Yes, it is proper. There could be a third party
complaint in a criminal case because an offense causes two
classes of injuries – the SOCIAL and the PERSONAL injury.
In this case, the civil aspect of the criminal case is deemed
impliedly instituted in the criminal case. Shafer may raise
all defenses available to him in so far as the criminal and
civil aspects are concerned. Shafer’s claim of indemnity
against the insurance company are also the claim by the
victim in the criminal claim. Therefore Shafer’s claim
against the insurance company is related to the criminal
case. So similar to Javier that an accused may also file a
compulsory counterclaim in a criminal case when there is
no reservation.
BUT in the light of the ruling in the case of
CABAERO vs. CANTOS, supra
The SHAFER ruling has to be set aside for the
meantime because there is no such thing as third-party
complaint in criminal cases now. In other words, forget it
in the meantime. Also, forget counterclaims in criminal
cases even if they arose out of the main action.
This case refers to JAVIER on whether or not there is
such a thing as a compulsory counterclaim in criminal
cases. SC said, “Huwag muna samok!” If we will allow it in
criminal cases it will only complicate and confuse the case.
The attention might be divested to counterclaims or cross-
claims or third-party complaints, etc.
HELD: “The trial court should confine itself to the
criminal aspect and the possible civil liability of the accused
arising out of the crime. The counter-claim (and cross-claim
or third party complaint, if any) should be set aside or
refused cognizance without prejudice to their filing in
separate proceedings at the proper time.”
We will go to the old case of
REPUBLIC vs. CENTRAL SURETY CO.
25 SCRA 641 [1968]
FACTS : Hannah filed a case against Rina for a liability
amounting to P300,000. So it was filed in RTC. Rina filed a
third-party complaint against ConCon Insurance Company
for indemnity insurance but the maximum insurance is only
P50,000. The insurance company moved to dismiss on the
ground that the court has no jurisdiction because third-
party complaint is only for P50,000 which is supposed to be
within the competence of the MTC.
ISSUE: Is the insurance company correct?
HELD: NO. The insurance company is wrong. The
third-party complaint is only incidental. The third-party
complaint need not be within the jurisdiction of the RTC
where the principal action is pending because the third-
party complaint is really a continuation and an ancillary to
the principal action. If the court acquires jurisdiction over
the main action, automatically, it acquires jurisdiction over
the third-party complain which is mainly a continuation of
the principal action.
Now, the same situation happened in another case. The case of
EASTER ASSURANCE vs. CUI
105 SCRA 642
FACTS : Carol is a resident of Davao City. Cathy is a
resident of Cebu City. Carol filed a case before the RTC of
Davao City against Cathy. Cathy files a third-party
complaint against Joy, a resident of Manila. Is the venue
proper?
HELD: The venue is proper because the venue of the
main action is proper. So automatically third-party
complaint is also proper. The third-party has to yield to the
jurisdiction and venue of the main action.
Now of course, if there’s such a thing as 3rd party complaint, there is
also a 4th, 5th, 6th or 7th complaint. That is possible but everything is with
respect to his opponent’s claim.
EXAMPLE:
A’s car was bumped by B. But B contented that the reason that he
bumped A’s car was because he was bumped by C and the same goes to C,
D, E. B then files a 3rd party complaint against C. C files a 4th party
complaint against D. D files a 5th party complaint against E. Meaning,
pasahan, ba. They will throw the liability to the one who did it. That is a
good hypothetical example of how a fourth, fifth, sixth party complaint can
come into play.
Sec. 12. Bringing new parties. - When the
presence of parties other than those to the original
action is required for the granting of complete relief
in the determination of a counterclaim or cross-
claim, the court shall order them to be brought in as
defendants, if jurisdiction over them can be
obtained.
The best example of Section 12 is the case of:
SAPUGAY vs. COURT OF APPEALS
183 SCRA 464
81
Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
FACTS: Mobil Philippines filed a case against Sapugay,
its gasoline dealer. Sapugay filed a answer and interposed a
counterclaim for damages against Mobil and included
Cardenas (the manager of Mobil) who is not a plaintiff.
ISSUE: Whether or not the inclusion of Cardenas in
the counterclaim is proper where he is not a plaintiff in the
Mobil case.
HELD: The inclusion of Cardenas is proper. The
general rule that the defendant cannot by a counterclaim
bring into the action any claim against persons other than
the plaintiff, admits of an exception under this provision
(Section 12) – meaning, if it is necessary to include a 3rd
person in a counterclaim or cross-claim, the court can order
him to be brought in as defendants. In effect, the bringing
of Cardenas in the case is sanctioned by the Rules.
The case of SAPUGAY should not be confused with the case of:
CHAVEZ vs. SANDIGANBAYAN
198 SCRA 282
FACTS: Petitioner Francisco Chavez (former solicitor
general) represented the government for PCGG. The case
arose out of PCGG cases wherein Enrile was sued for
accumulation of his ill-gotten wealth. Enrile filed an answer
to the complaint. Enrile contends that the case is
harassment suit whose mastermind was the Solicitor
General himself. Enrile files a counterclaim against Chavez.
(Enrile’s lawyer maybe well aware of the Sapugay case the
one sued is the lawyer.) Chavez questioned such
counterclaim contending that he was not a plaintiff.
Sandiganbayan denied such contention.
HELD: The inclusion of plaintiff’s lawyer is improper.
“To allow a counterclaim against a lawyer who files a
complaint for his clients, who is merely their representative
in court and not a plaintiff or complainant in the case would
lead to mischievous consequences. A lawyer owes his client
entire devotion to his genuine interest, warm zeal in the
maintenance and defense of his rights and the exertion of
his utmost learning and ability. A lawyer cannot properly
attend to his duties towards his client if, in the same case,
he is kept busy defending himself.”
Q: Is the SC suggesting that a lawyer who sued in a harassment case
can get away with it? Does that mean to say that the lawyer is immune from
suit?
A: NO, the SC does not say a lawyer enjoys a special immunity from
damage suits. However, when he acts in the name of the client, he should
not be sued in a counterclaim in the very same case where he has filed only
as a counsel and not as party. Only claims for alleged damages or other
causes of action should be filed in a separate case. Thus, if you feel that the
lawyer is acting maliciously, you file a complaint but in a separate case.
That’s why the case of Sapugay should not be confused with Chavez.
Sec. 13. Answer to third (fourth, etc.) party
complaint. - A third (fourth, etc.)-party defendant
may allege in his answer his defenses, counterclaims
or cross-claims, including such defenses that the
third (fourth, etc.)-party plaintiff may have against
the original plaintiff in respect of the latter's claim
against the third-party plaintiff. (n)
ILLUSTRATIONS:
A vs. B; B vs. C. Normally, B will defend himself against the complaint
of A and C will defend himself in the complaint of B. That is supposed to be
the pattern. Normally, C does not file a direct claim against A. But the law
allows C in defending himself, to answer the claim of A. The law allows him
to file a direct counterclaim against A.
If C has the right to frontally meet the action filed by A – meaning, C
will fight A directly – if C has the right to assert any defense which B has
against A and even for C to litigate against A, then it must be a proper third
party complaint. That has happened several times.
EXAMPLE: B owns a car which was already sold to C. The trouble is
that B never registered the transaction. On the record, B is still the
registered owner. Then C, while driving the car, meets an accident and
injures A. When A looked at the record, the owner is B. So A files a case
against B. So B will file a third party complaint against the real owner (C).
Now, C can frontally meet the complaint filed by A. That is the best example
where you have the right against the original plaintiff or even assert a
counterclaim against him. As a matter of fact, that last test is now
incorporated as a new provision (Section 13).
In the case of:
SINGAPORE AIRLINES vs. COURT OF APPEALS
243 SCRA 143 [1995]
FACTS: Aying filed a case against Bugoy. Bugoy filed a
third party complaint against and Cyle who wants to
frontally meet the main complaint filed by Aying
HELD: If that is your purpose, you have to file two (2)
answers – you file an answer to the third party complaint
and you file a second answer to the main complaint filed by
Aying.
82
Civil Procedure Rule 6
Kinds of Pleadings
“A third-party complaint involves an action separate
and distinct from, although related to, the main complaint.
A third-party defendant who feels aggrieved by some
allegations in the main complaint should, aside from
answering the third-party complaint, also answer the main
complaint.”
Normally, Cyle answers the 3rd party complaint of Bugoy and does not
answer to the complaint of Aying. But according to SINGAPORE case, if Cyle
feels aggrieved by the allegations of Aying, he should also answer the main
complaint of Aying. Practically, he shall answer the 3rd party complaint and
the main complaint.

83

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238019494 rule-06-kinds-of-pleadings

  • 1. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings Get Homework/Assignm ent Done Homeworkping .com Homework Help https://www.homeworkping.com/ Research Paper help https://www.homeworkping.com/ Online Tutoring https://www.homeworkping.com/ click here for freelancing tutoring sites PROCEDURE IN THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURTS Rule 6 KINDS OF PLEADINGS SECTION 1. Pleadings Defined. Pleadings are the written statements of the respective claims and defenses of the parties submitted to the court for appropriate judgment. (1a) Actually, we already touched the word “PLEADING” before. In the Constitution when we were asking what is the basis of the authority of the Supreme Court to enact the Rules of Court or Procedural Law. The Constitution says, the Supreme Court shall have the authority to promulgate Rules on pleadings, practice and procedure. Then we discussed jurisdiction over the issues. Jurisdiction over the issues is determined by the allegations in the pleadings. Q: Define pleadings? A: PLEADINGS are the written statements of the respective claims and defenses of the parties submitted to the court for appropriate judgment. (Section 1) This is the document where a party will state his claim against the defendant; or where the defendant will state also his defense. Pleadings merely tell a story. You tell your story there, the other party will tell his story. And how do you assert your claim in court? Not by calling up a judge over the telephone or writing a letter to the judge, “Dear judge….” but through the appropriate pleadings. How do they look like? The rules are laid down. It becomes clearer in the 3rd year subject known as Legal Forms. In that subject you will study particular forms. They have patterns. In pleadings, you do it in legal manner. You do not say, “Once upon a time…” The counterpart of pleadings in criminal procedure is information, or the criminal complaint where a prosecutor will tell what crime you are being accused – what you did, time, the victim, etc. Sec. 2 – Pleadings allowed – The claims of a party are asserted in a complaint, counterclaim, cross-claim, third (fourth, etc.) – party complaint, or complaint-in-intervention. The defenses of a party are alleged in the answer to the pleading asserting a claim against him. An answer may be responded to by a reply. (n) Section 2 tells us what are the pleadings allowed by the Rules of Court. In a civil case, there are actually two (2) contending parties: (1) the person suing or filing claim; and (2) the person being sued. Q: If you are the claimant or the plaintiff, in what pleading do you assert your claim? A: Complaint, counterclaim, cross-claim, third-party complaint or fourth-party complaint, etc. These are the different pleadings allowed by the Rules. Of course, maybe, the only thing that you are familiar with is the complaint. As we go over the Rules, you will understand what do you mean by those pleadings. On the other hand, if you are the party sued, you also have to file your pleading or your defense. It is known as the ANSWER. The defenses of a party are alleged in the answer to the pleading asserting a claim against him. If I file a complaint against you, in response, you will file an answer. In last paragraph, an answer may be responded by a REPLY. I file a complaint. You file an answer invoking your defenses. If I want to respond to your defenses, I will file a REPLY. COMPLAINT ANSWER REPLY That is the pattern. 69
  • 2. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings Q: Summarizing all of them, what are the know pleadings recognized by the law on Civil Procedure? A: There are seven (7) types of pleadings: 1.) Complaint; 2.) Answer; 3.) Counterclaim; 4.) Cross-claim; 5.) Reply 6.) Third (Fourth, Fifth, etc.) – Party Complaint; 7.) Complaint-in-Intervention. Let us go over each one of them. How do they function? A.) COMPLAINT Sec. 3. Complaint – The complaint is the pleading alleging the plaintiff’s cause or causes of action. The names and residences of the plaintiff and defendant must be stated in the complaint. Q: Define complaint. A: COMPLAINT is the pleading where the plaintiff will allege his cause or causes of action. A complaint is also called the INITIATORY PLEADING. Because it is actually the first pleading filed in court. It is the pleading that starts the ball rolling. It is the pleading that initiates the civil action. Of course, the names and residences of the defendants must be stated in the complaint. Do you know the pattern for a complaint? For EXAMPLE: Mr. Pito wants to sue Mr. Peloton to collect an unpaid loan. Mr. Peloton borrowed money from Mr. Pito and refused to pay. Normally, it starts with an introduction: “Plaintiff, through counsel, respectfully alleges that…” Then it is followed by paragraphs which are numbered. For instance: Illustration: 1.) Plaintiff Mr. Pito, of legal age, is a resident of Matina, Davao City; whereas defendant Mr. Peloton also of legal age, a resident of Bajada, Davao City; 2.) On Nov. 7, 1996, defendant secured a loan from plaintiff the sum of P30,000.00 payable within one (1) year form said date with legal interest; 3.) The account is already due. Despite repeated demands, defendant failed to and refused to pay; PRAYER WHEREFORE, it is respectfully prayed that judgment be rendered against the defendant ordering him to pay the loan of P30,000.00 and interest in favor of the plaintiff. It is simple. The complaint is composed of 3 paragraphs only – humiram siya ng pera, ayaw magbayad. That’s all. That is the pattern of a complaint. Your allegations must contain the four (4) elements of a Cause of Action – the Right, the Obligation, the Delict or Wrong or Violation of Your Right, and the Damage. Hindi kailangang mahaba ang complaint. It becomes clearer in the subject of Legal Forms. That is the last subject in the Bar Exam, Legal Ethics & Practical Exercises. The examinee will be asked, for instance, to prepare a Contract of Mortgage, or prepare a Complaint for Unlawful Detainer. There are hundreds of forms and you must be prepared to write down a sample. B.) ANSWER Sec. 4 – Answer – An answer is a pleading in which a defending party sets forth his defenses. (4a) I am the plaintiff. I file the complaint. You received the complaint. You are now required to respond. Q: What is the pleading where you respond? A: It is called the ANSWER. That is where you will state your defenses. That is why an ANSWER is called a Responsive Pleading. Q: Why is it called “Responsive Pleading”? A: Because it is the pleading which is filed in response to the complaint. It is where you respond to the cause of action. That is where you state your defenses. It is something which is not found in Criminal Procedure. A: NO, there is no such thing as Answer in Criminal Procedure. Q: If you are charged with a crime, how do you answer? A: By pleading guilty or not guilty. That is the answer. When you plead guilty, tapos na! If you say not guilty, trial will proceed. No writing of defenses. No written answer in criminal cases. It (pleadings) only applies to civil cases where you allege your defenses. Q: What are the defenses under the Rules? A: That is Section 5. Sec. 5 – Defenses – Defenses may either be negative or affirmative. A NEGATIVE DEFENSE – is the specific denial of the material fact or facts alleged in the pleading of the claimant essential to his cause or causes of action. An AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSE – is an allegation of a new matter which, while hypothetically admitting the material allegations in the pleading of the claimant, would nevertheless prevent or bar recovery by him. Defenses may either be negative or affirmative. b.) Answer; NEGATIVE DEFENSES; Q: Define an NEGATIVE defense. A: Paragraph [a]: Briefly, it is a defense of specific denial where you deny the statement in the complaint and you state the facts and the reason/s on which your denial is based. In a negative defense, the 70
  • 3. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings defendant specifically denies a material fact or facts alleged in the pleading of the claimant essential to his cause of action. EXAMPLE: The complaint says in paragraph 2, “On November 6, 1996, defendant secured a loan from plaintiff in the amount of P30,000.00 payable one (1) year from November 6, 1996. The defendant will say in his answer: “Defendant specifically denies the allegation in Paragraph 2 of the complaint. The truth of the matter being he never secured any loan from plaintiff because he does not even know the plaintiff and he did not see his face before.” That is a negative defense. You said I borrowed money from you. “No, I don’t even know you. I have not seen you before.” He denies the existence of the loan. That is known as the negative defense. It is a denial of a material fact which constitutes the plaintiff’s cause of action. That’s why it is briefly called a “Defense of Specific Denial”. b.) Answer; AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES Q: Define an AFFIRMATIVE defense. A: In paragraph (b), it is briefly called a defense of confession and avoidance because, while the defendant may admit the material allegation in the complaint, however, he will plead a new matter which will prevent a recovery by the plaintiff. I admit what you are saying in the complaint but still you are not entitled to recover from me. EXAMPLE: The defendant may admit what you are saying in your complaint. I borrowed money from you – admitted! The account is due – admitted! I have not paid you – admitted. “However, you cannot collect from me because the account has already prescribed.” Meaning, I will admit what you are saying but just the same, I am not liable. Kaya nga, you confess, eh. I confess to what you say but I still avoid liability. Examples of affirmative defenses are: fraud, statute of limitations, release, payment, illegality, statute of frauds, estoppel, former recovery, discharge in bankruptcy, and any other matter by way of confession and avoidance. Suppose, you sue me for damages arising from breach of contract. I admit I entered into a contract but I have no obligation to comply because the contract is null and void. Or, the contract is illegal. Or, the stipulation is contrary to public policy, therefore, I am not bound. I admit what you say but I am not liable because of the illegality of the subject matter of the contract. Or, you sue me because according to you, I entered into a contract and I refused to comply. So, you file a case against me for specific performance or for damages. Then I say: “It’s true that I entered into a contract with you. It’s true I did not comply. But there is nothing you can do because the contract is oral and the contract is covered by the statute of frauds. In order to be enforceable, we should have reduced it into writing. Since we never reduced it into writing, I am not bound to comply.” c.) COUNTERCLAIMS Sec. 6. Counterclaim. - A counterclaim is any claim which a defending party may have against an opposing party. (6a) EXAMPLE: You file a case against me for damages to your car. According to you in your complaint, while you were driving your car along the highway carefully. I came along driving recklessly and bumped your car causing damages amounting to P50,000.00 for repair. Your allegation is based on negligence on my part. My answer is denial: “That is not true! I deny that! I was the one driving carefully and you were driving carelessly and negligently. Therefore, if you are the proximate cause of the accident, I’m not liable for the damage of your car.” That’s my answer – I’m not liable because you are negligent. Because you were the one negligent, my car was also damaged. I am not liable for the damage on your car. As a matter of fact, you are the one that should be held liable to pay for the damage of my car. I am now claiming for the damage of P50,000.00. That is called COUNTERCLAIM. According to a lawyer who is fluent in Cebuano, he called it balos. He was explaining to his client that they have counterclaim. That’s a legal term, eh. Therefore, there is one civil case but there are two (2) causes involved – the main cause of action in the complaint and that in the counterclaim. There are two (2) issues to be resolved by the court. Q: If your complaint against me is to recover a sum of money, should my counterclaim also involve recovery of sum of money? A: NO. There is no such rule that these two (2) cases should be similar in nature. (De Borja vs. De Borja, 101 Phil. 911) It is possible for you to file case for recovery of a piece of land and my counterclaim is recovery of damages arising from a vehicular accident. Q: Suppose your claim against me is One (1) Million, is it possible that my counterclaim against you is Two (2) Million? A: YES. There is no rule which limits my counterclaim to the same amount you are claiming. A counterclaim need not diminish or defeat the recovery sought by the opposing party, but may claim relief exceeding in amount or different I kind from that sought by the opposing party. (De Borja vs. De Borja, 101 Phil. 911) Q: You file a case against me for recovery of unpaid loan. My counterclaim is, rescission of partnership contract. Is the counterclaim proper? A: Yes although there is no connection between what you are asking and what my answer is. But what is important is tayong dalawa ang naglalaban. If you will not allow me to file my counterclaim against you, that will be another case in the future. Since nandito na rin tayo, so lahat ng ating reklamo, we might as well have to finish it. That is allowed. Q: Why is it that law allows the defendant to counter sue by way of counterclaim the plaintiff? A: The purpose there is apparently TO AVOID MULTIPLICITY OF SUITS. If you have a cause of action against me, I will sue you, in the future it will also lead to another case where you will also sue me. 71
  • 4. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings DEBORJA vs. DEBORJA 101 Phil 911 FACTS: A died, of course, what survives after that is the estate. X was appointed as administrator or legal representative. W owes a sum of money to the estate of A and X filed a case against W to collect the unpaid loan. X is called the REPRESENTATIVE PARTY under Rule 3, Section 3. W filed an answer and that W has a claim against X. W filed a counterclaim against X in the case. HELD: The counterclaim is improper. When X sued W, X is not suing in his own personal capacity. He is acting as administrator of the estate of A. The real plaintiff is the estate of A. X is just the legal representative. Therefore, you cannot file a counterclaim against X in the latter’s personal capacity when X is suing W in a representative capacity. The SC said that the plaintiff should be sued in a counterclaim in the SAME CAPACITY that he is suing the defendant. That’s a principle to remember. PERMISSIVE & COMPULSORY COUNTERCLAIMS Sec. 7 – Compulsory counterclaim – A compulsory counterclaim is one which, being cognizable by the regular courts of justice, arises out of or is connected with the transaction or occurrence constituting the subject matter of the opposing party’s claim and does not require for its adjudication the presence of third parties of who the court cannot acquire jurisdiction. Such a counterclaim must be within the jurisdiction of the court both as to the amount and the nature thereof, except that in the original action before the Regional Trial Court, the counterclaim may be considered compulsory. Under the Rules, there are two types of counterclaim. 1) COMPULSORY COUNTERCLAIM and, 2) PERMISSIVE COUNTERCLAIM. Q: How do you distinguish one from the other? When is a counterclaim compulsory and when is it permissive? A: The ELEMENTS of a COMPULSORY COUNTERCLAIM are found in Section 7. If we will outline Section 7, we will see that a counterclaim is compulsory if the following requisites are present: 1.) It is cognizable by the regular courts of justice; 2.) It arises out of or it is connected with a transaction or occurrence constituting a subject matter of the opposing party’s claim; 3.) It does not require for its adjudication the presence of third parties of who the court cannot acquire jurisdiction; 4.) It must be within the jurisdiction of the court, both as to the amount and the nature thereof, except that in an original action before the RTC, the counterclaim may be considered compulsory regardless of the amount; and 5.) The defending party has a counterclaim at the time he files his answer. The fifth requisite is not found in Section 7 but in Rule 11, Section 8: Rule 11, Sec. 8. Existing counterclaim or cross- claim. - A compulsory counterclaim or a cross-claim that a defending party has at the time he files his answer shall be contained therein. (8a, R6) Another way of saying it is, the counterclaim has already matured at the time he files his answer. That is the fifth requisite. Q: What happens if one of these requisites is missing? A: If one of the five requisites is missing, the counterclaim is permissive in nature. We will discuss the elements of a compulsory counterclaim one by one. First Element: A COUNTERCLAIM TO BE COMPULSORY MUST BE COGNIZABLE BY THE REGULAR COURTS. In other words, if you file a complaint against me and I have a counterclaim against you in the Labor Code, then it cannot be classified as a compulsory claim because how can I invoke against you a claim which is cognizable by the NLRC before the RTC? Second Element: IT ARISES OUT OF OR IT IS CONNECTED WITH A TRANSACTION OR OCCURRENCE CONSTITUTING A SUBJECT MATTER OF THE OPPOSING PARTY’S CLAIM The second requisite is the most important. A counterclaim, to be compulsory, must arise out of or connected with the transaction or occurrence constituting a subject matter of the opposing party concerned. It must arise out of or is connected with a transaction or occurrence constituting a subject matter of the opposing party’s claim. It must be logically related to the subject matter of the main action. So the rule is, if the counterclaim did not arise out of or is not connected with the transaction or occurrence constituting the subject matter of the opposing party’s concern, the counterclaim must be permissive in nature. PROBLEM: Emily filed a case against Regina for damages arising from a vehicle collision. According to Emily, the case of the accident is the negligence of the defendant in driving her car. Her car bumped the car of Emily and was damaged. So, Emily is holding Regina liable for the damage on her car. Regina denied that she was negligent. According to Regina, “No, I am not negligent. As a matter of fact, you (Emily) were the one negligent, and because of that negligence, my car was also damaged. So you should be the one to pay damages.” Parang ganyan ba. Q: Is the counterclaim of Regina arising out of or is connected with the transaction or occurrence constituting the subject matter of the opposing party? 72
  • 5. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings A: YES because we are talking of the same bumping. You bumped my car, you say I bumped your car. So we are talking of the same event or transaction. PROBLEM: Thea G. (as in ‘Gamay’) files a case against me for recovery of a piece of land. According to her, she is the owner of the land which I’m occupying. Now, I file my answer, and then I said, “Ms. Guadalope, I spent a lot of money for necessary expenses to preserve the land. You are also liable to reimburse me for the necessary improvements expenses I introduced on the land.” Under the law on Property, a defendant or possessor is entitled to reimbursement for necessary improvements and expenses. So she is trying to recover the piece of land, I am now asking her to reimburse me for all necessary expenses that I spent on the land. Q: Is my counterclaim arising out of or connected with the subject matter of your claim or not? A: YES. We are talking of the same subject matter. Thus, the counterclaim is compulsory. PROBLEM: Thea G. files a case against me for recovery of a piece of land. My counterclaim against her is damages arising from a vehicular collision. Q: Is my counterclaim arising out of a subject matter of your action? A: NO. It is completely different. Thus, that is a permissive counterclaim. So, those are the examples. That is why, the second requisite is the most important element – a counterclaim must arise out of or is connected with the subject matter or a transaction or the event or the main action. By the way, the second element is considered the most important element of compulsory counterclaim because according to the SC in the 1992 case of MELITON vs. COURT OF APPEALS 216 SCRA 485 HELD: “It has been postulated that while a number of criteria have been advanced for the determination of whether the counterclaim is compulsory or permissive, the one compelling test of compulsoriness is the logical relationship between the claim alleged in the complaint and that in the counterclaim, that is, where conducting separate trials of the respective claims of the parties would entail a substantial duplication of effort and time, as where they involve many of the same factual and/or legal issues.” Q: What is the importance of determining whether the claim is compulsory or permissive? A: A compulsory counterclaim must be invoked in the same action. Iit cannot be the subject matter of a separate action. Unlike in permissive where you have the choice of invoking it in the same case, or in a separate action, compulsory counterclaim must be invoked in the same action otherwise it will be barred. That is found in Rule 9, Section 2: Rule 9, Sec. 2. Compulsory counterclaim, or cross-claim, not set up barred. - A compulsory counter-claim or a cross-claim, not set up shall be barred. (4a) So if I do not file a counterclaim against you in the same action, under Rule 9, the counterclaim is barred forever. I cannot claim it against you in any other case in the future. But if the counterclaim is permissive and I will not raise it as a counterclaim, it is not barred. It can still be invoked in another case against you. It can be a subject matter of a separate action. Let us try to apply that principle to the case cited. PROBLEM: Vanessa files a case against me for damages arising from vehicular collision. Her car is damaged, my car is damaged. In my answer, I denied negligence but I did not claim from her the damage to my vehicle. After the trial, court found the plaintiff at fault. So, the complaint of Vanessa was dismissed. So panalo ako. Balikan ko siya ngayon. This time I will file a case against her to recover damages for the damage to my car since I was able to prove that she was negligent and not me. Q: What will happen to my case now? A: My case will be dismissed because I did not raise that cause of action as a counterclaim. Compulsory yan eh. So since you did not raise, is barred forever. PROBLEM: Aileen files a case against me for recovery of a piece of land. After trial, talo ako. The court said that I should return the land to her. So isinauli ko na. Ngayon, kailangan bayaran niya naman ako for the necessary expenses. So, I will file a case against her. She moved to dismiss – barred, because I should have raised that as a counterclaim. I cannot file another case involving that cause of action. That is the effect of failure to raise the compulsory counterclaim in the case filed against you. PROBLEM: Now, suppose the counterclaim is PERMISSIVE. Pauline files case against me for recovery of land. My cause of action against her is damages arising against a vehicular collision. Obviously, the counterclaim is permissive. Q: Is the counterclaim allowed? A: Yes, allowed. Q: Pauline will file a case against me for damages arising from vehicular collision. My decision is not to file a counterclaim but to file another case against her. Is that allowed? A: Yes, that is allowed. Meaning, I may or may not raise it as a counterclaim because it is permissive. I am permitted to raise it as a counterclaim but I am not obliged. I may decided to file another action against you. That is the importance between a compulsory counterclaim and a permissive counterclaim. Third Requisite: IT DOES NOT REQUIRE FOR ITS ADJUDICATION PRESENCE OF THIRD PARTIES OF WHOM THE COURT CANNOT ACQUIRE JURISDICTION. Meaning, if my counterclaim against you will involve the presence of an indispensable party who is, let’s say, abroad, and therefore, the court cannot acquire jurisdiction over him, and since it involves an indispensable party, I will not raise it as a counterclaim. Q: Will it be barred? A: NO. If I will file my counterclaim, it will involve another party who is indispensable. The trouble is, he is not around. Therefore, the counterclaim is not barred because the third element is missing. 73
  • 6. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings Fourth Element: THAT THE COUNTERCLAIM MUST BE WITHIN THE JURISDICTION OF THE COURT BOTH AS TO THE AMOUNT AND NATURE THEREOF. Q: I will file a case against you for forcible entry. I want to recover a piece of land. Where is the jurisdiction of that case? A: MTC. Squatting. I will recover a land from a squatter. Review: In the Law on Property, even if you are a possessor in bad faith, he is entitled to reimbursement for necessary expenses. The theory there is, even if he is a possessor in bad faith, the expenses redounded to the benefit of the land owner. Anyway, you will spend them just the same as the land owner will have to spend for them. So it will not be fair if he is not reimbursed. That’s our premise, noh? PROBLEM: Now, the defendant would like to claim for reimbursement for the necessary expenses that he spent in my lot. The case I filed against you is forcible entry in the MTC. Your necessary expenses amount to P300,000. Q: Should you raise it as a compulsory counterclaim in the forcible entry case? A: NO. Q: Does it arise out of or connected with the transaction which is the subject matter of the main action? Why not compulsory? A: Because the MTC has no jurisdiction over the P300,000 amount for the necessary expenses. This time, that is the missing element. Q: How will the defendant claim reimbursement? A: He has to file with the RTC a case for reimbursement. He cannot use that as a counterclaim for the forcible entry case because the MTC has no jurisdiction on a counterclaim where the amount is over P200,000.00. I will reverse the problem: PROBLEM: The plaintiff filed against the defendant an action for accion publiciana – recovery for a piece of land where the value of the property is P1 million. So the case should be filed in the RTC. Now, the defendant is claiming for the reimbursement of the improvements thereon (necessary expenses) amounting to P50,000. Q: Should the defendant raise that as a counterclaim in the accion publiciana case? A: YES. In the first example, the counterclaim is above the jurisdiction of the MTC. This time, the amount for the counterclaim is below the jurisdiction of the RTC. So the RTC can claim jurisdiction. Q: How can the RTC try a counterclaim when the claim is only P50,000? A: It is in accordance with the exception under Section 7: “except that in an original action before the RTC, the counterclaim may be considered compulsory regardless of the amount.” This means that the main action is accion publiciana—RTC. The counterclaim is reimbursement for necessary expenses with arose out of the same land. Normally, the RTC cannot try that but the answer to this question is YES. The RTC can award a claim for damages even though the claim is below its jurisdiction. The principle is: Since the counterclaim is compulsory, jurisdiction over the main action automatically carries with it jurisdiction over the compulsory counterclaim. The compulsory counterclaim is merely incidental to the main action. Jurisdiction of the RTC over the main action necessarily carries with it jurisdiction over the compulsory counterclaim which is merely ancillary. But the first example is baliktad. If the main action is with the MTC, it cannot try the counterclaim with the RTC. It is beyond its jurisdiction. It is not covered by the exception. But if it is the main action which is within the jurisdiction of the RTC, it can try a counterclaim which is below its jurisdiction provided it arose out or is connected with the transaction. That exception is not written in the prior rules but it is a recognized exception laid down by the SC which is now written down in the law. In the case of MACEDA vs. COURT OF APPEALS 176 SCRA 440 HELD: “The jurisdiction of the MTC in a civil action for sum of money is limited to a demand that does not exceed P100,000 (now P200,000) exclusive of interest and costs. A counterclaim beyond its jurisdiction and limit may be pleaded only by way of defense to weaken the plaintiff’s claim, but not to obtain affirmative relief.” Fifth Requisite: THE DEFENDING PARTY HAS A COUNTERCLAIM AT THE TIME HE FILES HIS ANSWER. How can I make a claim against you which is not yet existing? Even if all the other requisites are present, the counterclaim would still not be compulsory because how can one invoke something now which he can acquire in the future? So, those are the five essential elements. You remove one, the counterclaim becomes permissive. Q: Again. What is the importance of distinguishing whether the counterclaim is compulsory or permissive? A: If the counterclaim is compulsory, the defendant is obliged under the law to raise it as a counterclaim in the action where he is being sued. If he fails to invoke it, it is barred forever (Rule 9 Section 2). If the counterclaim is permissive, the defendant has a choice of raising it as a counterclaim in the case filed against him or he may decide to file another action against the plaintiff, raising it as his cause of action. It is permitted but not obliged. COUNTERCLAIMS IN CRIMINAL CASES JAVIER vs. IAC 171 SCRA 605 FACTS: The Javier spouses filed a criminal case against Leon Gutierrez Jr, under BP 22 or the Bouncing Check Law, for issuing a bad check. The criminal case was filed before the RTC of Makati. The complainants did not reserve the civil action. The implication is that the claim for civil liability is deemed instituted with the criminal case. 74
  • 7. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings Gutierrez in turn filed a civil action for damages against the Javier spouses in the RTC of Catarman, Northern Samar, where he accused spouses of having tricked him into signing the check. According to him, “because you tricked me into signing the check for which you are suing me, I’m holding you liable for damages”. What happened now is that he was being criminally sued in Makati but defending himself in Catarman, Northern Samar. He is explaining in the Samar court what he should be doing in the Makati court. HELD: The civil case in Samar should be dismissed. It must be in the Makati court that Gutierrez, as accused in the criminal charge of violation of BP 22, should explain why he issued the bouncing check. He should explain that story in Makati and not in Samar. This should have been done in the form of a counterclaim for damages for the alleged deception by the Javier spouses. In fact, the counterclaim was compulsory and should have been filed by Gutierrez upon the implied institution of the civil action for damages in the criminal case. What the SC is saying is, since the civil action for damages is impliedly instituted in the criminal case, and he wants to hold you liable for filing this case, he should file a counterclaim against you in the criminal case. What is unique was that for the first time in the Philippine Procedural Law, SC laid down the rule that there is such thing as a counterclaim in a criminal case, because, normally, counterclaims are only recognized in civil cases. But since the civil action is deemed instituted in the criminal case, the accused can file a counterclaim against the offended party in the criminal action. The trouble in this ruling is that, it has been subjected to a lot of criticisms by academicians – professors of Remedial Law, authors – they criticized the ruling. It provokes more problems than answers. A justice of the SC remarked, “I think we made a mistake (privately ba) in the Javier ruling. Kaya it was never repeated. The SC, in 1997, had another chance to comment on Javier in the case of— CABAERO vs. CANTOS 271 SCRA 392, en banc NOTE: Here, the Javier ruling was set aside. HELD: “The logic and cogency of Javier notwithstanding, some reservations and concerns were voiced out by members of the Court during the deliberations on the present case. These were engendered by the obvious lacuna in the Rules of Court, which contains no express provision for the adjudication of a counterclaim in a civil action impliedly instituted in a criminal case.” “By the foregoing discussion, we do not imply any fault in Javier. The real problem lies in the absence of clear- cut rules governing the prosecution of impliedly instituted civil actions and the necessary consequences and implications thereof. For this reason, the counter-claim of the accused cannot be tried together with the criminal case because, as already discussed, it will unnecessarily complicate and confuse the criminal proceedings. Thus, the trial court should confine itself to the criminal aspect and the possible civil liability of the accused arising out of the crime. The counter-claim (and cross-claim or third party complaint, if any) should be set aside or refused cognizance without prejudice to their filing in separate proceedings at the proper time.” “At balance, until there are definitive rules of procedure to govern the institution, prosecution and resolution of the civil aspect and the consequences and implications thereof impliedly instituted in a criminal case, trial courts should limit their jurisdiction to the civil liability of the accused arising from the criminal case.” This means SC admitted that the Javier doctrine put more problems and confusions in the absence of specific rules. The counterclaim should not be tried together in a criminal case. The trial court should confine itself in the criminal action and that the counterclaim should be set aside without prejudice to its right in setting up actions in the civil action. NOTE: The ruling in the case of CABAERO is now incorporated in the last paragraph of Section 1, paragraph [a], Rule 111 of the 2000 Revised Criminal Procedure: “No counterclaim, cross-claim or third-party complaint may be filed by the accused in the criminal case, but any cause of action which could have been the subject thereof may be litigated in a separate civil action.” D.) CROSS-CLAIMS Sec. 8. Cross-claim. A cross-claim is any claim by one party against a co-party arising out of the transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter either of the original action or of a counterclaim therein. Such cross-claim may include a claim that the party against whom it is asserted is or may be liable to the cross-claimant for all or part of a claim asserted in the action against the cross-claimant.(7) A cross claim is a claim by one party against a co-party. It may be a claim by defendant against his co-defendant arising out of the subject matter of the main action. EXAMPLE: Jet and Pao are solidary debtors for the sum of P100,000. Jet and Pao signed a promissory note in favor of Dean to collect the sum of P100,000. However, although Jet signed the promissory note, he did not get a single centavo. Everything went to Pao. Both of them are now sued. According to Jet, “Actually there is a possibility that I will pay the P100,000 to Dean when actually I did not even get a single centavo out of it. Everything went to Pao [bwiset!]!” Therefore, Jet will now file a case against Pao where he will allege that if Jet will be held liable to Dean, Pao will reimburse him (Jet). So, Jet will also file a claim in the same action against Pao. 75
  • 8. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings Now, the claim filed by Jet against his co-defendant Pao is called a CROSS-CLAIM where Jet is called defendant in the case filed by Dean and a cross-claimant against Pao. Pao is also the defendant in the case filed by Dean and a cross-defendant with respect to the cross-claim filed by Jet. So that is another case which a defendant is filing against another defendant. The law says that the “cross-claim arises out of the transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of the original action.” In other words, the cross-claimant will assert that the cross-defendant is liable to him for all or part of the claim asserted in the main action against the cross-claimant. Take note that the cross-claim of Jet against Pao is merely an off-short of the case filed by Dean against Jet and Pao. Meaning, it arises out of the same transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of the case filed by Dean against them. PROBLEM: Suppose Dean files a case against Jet and Pao to collect a promissory note signed by Jet and Pao. Tapos, sinabi ni Jet in his cross-claim, “Well, since we are already here, I also have a claim against Pao for damages arising from a vehicular collision.” Q: Is the cross-claim allowed in the problem? A: NO. The cross-claim is improper. It has no connection with the complaint of Dean against Jet and Pao. A counter-claim must always arise out of a transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of the main action. BAR QUESTION: Distinguish a COUNTERCLAIM from a CROSS-CLAIM. A: The following are the distinctions: 1.) A COUNTERCLAIM is a complaint by the defendant against the plaintiff, whereas, A CROSS-CLAIM is a claim by a defendant against a co- defendant; 2.) The life of the CROSS-CLAIM depends on the life of the main action. A cross-claim is merely a consequence of the case filed by the plaintiff against the defendants. No main action, no cross-claim (RUIZ, JR. vs. CA, infra). Whereas, In a COUNTERCLAIM, you can kill the main action, still the counterclaim survives. 3.) A COUNTERCLAIM may be asserted whether or not it arises out of the same transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of the action, whereas, A CROSS-CLAIM must always arise out of the same transaction or occurrence that is the subject matter of the action. Example: Pao case filed against Jet to collect a loan. Jet files a COUNTERCLAIM against Pao to recover a piece of land. That is allowed and that is a permissive counterclaim. But suppose Dean files a case to collect a loan against Jet and Pao. Jet files a CROSS-CLAIM against Pao to recover a piece of land. Q: Will it be allowed? A: Not allowed! It has no connection with the subject matter of the main action. Take note that a cross-claim is any claim by one party against a co- party arising out of the transaction of occurrence that is the subject matter of the original action or of a counterclaim therein. So, a cross-claim may arise our either of the original action or counter-claim therein. EXAMPLE: Jet and Pao file a case against Dean. Dean files his answer with a counterclaim against the plaintiffs Jet and Pao. So Jet and Pao will now become defendants with respect to the counterclaim filed by Dean. So Jet now can file a cross-claim against Pao arising out of the counterclaim. So this is an example of a plaintiff filing a cross-claim against his co-plaintiff because of the counterclaim. HYPOTHETICAL EXAMPLE: 1.) Mortz and Charles, plaintiffs, filed a case against Jet and Pao, defendants. There are two plaintiffs suing two different defendants on a promissory note. Both Jet and Pao signed the promissory note in favor of Mortz and Charles: COMPLAINT (Collection case – Main Action): MORTZ and CHARLES [total: 785 lbs.], plaintiffs -versus- JET and PAO, defendants 2.) Now, according to Jet, every centavo of the loan went to Pao. So Jet files a cross-claim against Pao: CROSS-CLAIM ON THE MAIN ACTION Defendant JET [feather weight], now cross-claimant -versus- Defendant PAO [heavy weight], now cross-defendant 3.) Jet also says, “Actually may reklamo ako sa inyong dalawa (Mortz and Charles) because you entered my land and gathered some of its product [mga patay gutom!!]”. Nag-file siya ng counterclaim against both Mortz and Charles. In the counter-claim of Jet, ang defendants ay si Mortz and Charles for the accounting of the improvements on the land: COUNTERCLAIM OF JET Defendant JET, now plaintiff -versus- Plaintiffs MORTZ and CHARLES, now co-defendants 4.) Mortz now will answer the counterclaim of Jet, “Actually, the damages on land was not caused by me. Si Charles man ang may kasalanan ba! Yun ang patay gutom!!” So Mortz files a cross- claim against co-plaintiff Charles arising out to the counterclaim of Jet: CROSS-CLAIM ARISING FROM THE COUNTERCLAIM OF JET Plaintiff MORTZ, now cross-claimant -versus- Plaintiff CHARLES, now cross-defendant 76
  • 9. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings 5.) Now, according to Pao, “Actually last month, a car owned by both of you (Mortz and Charles) bumped my car and that my car was damaged.” So, nag-file naman si Pao ng counterclaim against Mortz and Charles for the damage of the car. COUNTERCLAIM OF PAO Defendant PAO, now plaintiff -versus- Plaintiffs MORTZ and CHARLES, now defendants 6.) Sabi ni Charles, “I’m not the owner of the car. Si Mortz ang owner. Gago!” So cross-claim naman siya (Charles) kay Mortz: CROSS-CLAIM ARISING FROM THE COUNTERCLAIM OF PAO Plaintiff CHARLES, now cross-claimant -versus- Plaintiff MORTZ, now cross-defendant Ilan lahat ang kaso? There are six (6) cases which are to be decided in the same action. This rarely happens, but it is possible under the rules. The obvious PURPOSE of these is to avoid multiplicity of suits and toward these ends. According to the SC, the rules allow in a certain cases and even compel a petitioner to combine in one litigation these conflicting claims most particularly when they arise out of the same transaction. The rule does not only allow a permissive counterclaim but the parties are even compelled to raise them in a compulsory counter-claim. RUIZ, JR. vs. COURT OF APPEALS 212 SCRA 660 FACTS: Dean files a case against Jet and Pao. Jet files a cross-claim against Pao. After a while, the case against Jet and Pao was dismissed. ISSUE: What happens to the cross-claim of Jet against Pao? HELD: When the main action was dismissed, the cross-action must also be dismissed. The life of a cross- claim depends on the life of the main action. If the main action is dismissed, the cross-claim will have to be automatically dismissed. “A cross-claim could not be the subject of independent adjudication once it lost the nexus upon which its life depended. The cross-claimants cannot claim more rights than the plaintiffs themselves, on whose cause of action the cross-claim depended. The dismissal of the complaint divested the cross-claimants of whatever appealable interest they might have had before and also made the cross-claim itself no longer viable” Whereas, the counterclaim can exist alone without the complaint. EXAMPLE: Pao filed a case against Jet for the recovery of a piece of land. Jet’s counterclaim is damages arising from a vehicular accident. Na- dismiss ang kaso ni Pao – wala na yung recovery of a piece of land. The counterclaim of Jet can still remain alive even if the main action is dead. But in a cross-claim, once the main action is dead, the cross-claim is also automatically dead too. What is there to reimburse when the complainant has been dismissed? Aber?! COUNTER COUNTERCLAIM and COUNTER CROSS-CLAIM Sec. 9. Counter-counterclaims and counter- cross-claims. A counterclaim may be asserted against an original counter-claimant. A cross-claim may also be filed against an original cross-claimant.(n) Section 9 is a new provision. There is such a thing as counter- counterclaim and counter-cross-claim. The concept of counter-counter- claim is not new. As a matter of fact, that was asked in the bar years ago. EXAMPLE: Chams filed against you an action to collect a loan. You filed a counterclaim against her to recover a piece of land. Of course, she have to answer your counterclaim. But she will say, “Actually you have been molesting me with your claim when actually you have no right over my land.” So, nag-file siya ng injunction to stop you from molesting her. In other words, based on your counter-claim against her to recover my land, she will file a counterclaim to stop you from molesting her. In effect, there is counter-claim to a counter-claim. COUNTER-CROSS-CLAIM. Nag cross-claim ka sa akin, mag cross-claim din ako sa iyo. E.) REPLY Sec. 10. Reply. A reply is a pleading, the office or function of which is to deny, or allege facts in denial or avoidance of new matters alleged by way of defense in the answer and thereby join or make issue as to such new matters. If a party does not file such reply, all the new matters alleged in the answer are deemed controverted. If the plaintiff wishes to interpose any claims arising out of the new matters so alleged, such claims shall be set forth in an amended or supplemental complaint.(11) ILLUSTRATION: Plaintiff files a complaint against a defendant to collect an unpaid loan. D files his answer and raises a new matter, affirmative defense. According to the defendant, the obligation is already paid. Plaintiff said that you have paid the other loan. In other words, the plaintiff would like to deny or dispute the defendant’s affirmative defense of payment. Q: Can I file a pleading to dispute your defense? A: Yes, that pleading is called a REPLY. Q: How do you classify a reply? 77
  • 10. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings A: It is a responsive pleading because it is the response of the plaintiff to the affirmative defense raised in the defendant’s answer. An answer is a response to the complaint and the reply is a response to the answer. Q: Halimbawa, you would like to answer my reply, what pleading would you file? A: None. That is the last pleading. Otherwise, walang katapusan and pleading natin. So, reply is considered as the last pleading. Q: Suppose I filed a complaint, you filed an answer invoking payment. I failed to reply. What is the effect if the plaintiff fails to reply? Is he admitting the correctness of the defense? A: No. The failure to file a reply has no effect. Section 10 says that if a party does file such reply, all the new matters alleged in the answer are deemed controverted. Meaning, all the affirmative defenses raised in the answers are automatically denied. So, whether you file a reply or not, the defenses are deemed automatically disputed. The filing of a reply is OPTIONAL. A reply should not be confused with the answer to a counterclaim which is also filed by the plaintiff. Q: Give the distinctions between ANSWER TO COUNTER-CLAIM and REPLY. A: The following: 1.) A REPLY is a response to the defenses interposed by the defendant in his answer, whereas An ANSWER TO A COUNTERCLAIM is a response to a cause of action by the defendant against the plaintiff; 2.) The filing of a REPLY is generally optional, whereas The filing of an ANSWER TO A COUNTERCLAIM is generally mandatory under Rule 11 because if the plaintiff fails to file an answer to the counterclaim, he will be declared in default on the counterclaim. OUTLINE OF FLOW OF PLEADINGS F. THIRD (FOURTH, ETC.) – PARTY COMPLAINT Sec. 11. Third, (fourth, etc.) - party complaint. A third (fourth, etc.) party complaint is a claim that a defending party may, with leave of court, file against a person not a party to the action, called the third (fourth, etc.) party defendant, for contribution, indemnity, subrogation or any other relief, in respect of his opponent's claim. (12a) THIRD PARTY COMPLAINT is the procedure for bringing into a case a third person who is not a party to the case. So, plaintiff files a case against the defendant. Defendant believes that a stranger or somebody else should be brought into the case and therefore files a motion in court that he be allowed to file a third-party complaint against such person and therefore the defendant is called third party plaintiff and that third person is a third-party defendant. EXAMPLE : A plaintiff files a case against a defendant to collect a loan when there are two debtors and one of them is compelled to pay everything so the defendant will drag into the picture the co-debtor for contribution or indemnity. Well, you already learned if there are two of them all he has to do is to file a cross-claim against his co-defendant. BUT since he is the only one, the remedy is to avail of Section 11. Take note that filing a third-party complaint is not a matter of right. THERE MUST BE LEAVE OF COURT. So unlike counterclaim or cross-claim, you do not need any motion or leave of court. Just file your answer to the counterclaim of cross-claim and that will do, but not a third-party complaint. The purpose of third-party complaint is for contribution, indemnity, subrogation and other relief in respect of his opponent’s claim. That is why there is a close relationship between a cross-claim and a third-party complaint because a cross-claim must also be arising out of the subject matter of the main action. A third-party complaint must be also related to the main action. It cannot be a cause of action which has no relation to the main action. EXAMPLE: The plaintiff files a case against the surety and the principal debtor, so both of them are defendants, and the surety seeks reimbursement for whatever amount he may be compelled to pay the plaintiff. What kind of pleading would he file against his co-defendant (the principal debtor)? CROSS-CLAIM. BUT if the plaintiff file a case ONLY against the surety, because anyway the principal debtor is not an indispensable party and the surety would like to seek reimbursement from the person who benefited from the loan, he cannot file a cross-claim against anybody because he is the lone defendant. It is possible for him to just file an answer . If he loses and pays the plaintiff, then he will file another case against the principal debtor for reimbursement. But if he wants everything to be resolved in the same case, what kind pleading will he file? He must resort a THIRD-PARTY COMPLAINT and implead the principal debtor. The PURPOSE of a third-party complaint is for the third party plaintiff to ask the third party defendant for: 1.) Contribution; 2.) Indemnity; 3.) Subrogation; or 4.) any other relief in respect to the opponent’s claim. 78
  • 11. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings CONTRIBUTION: Example #1: Two debtors borrowed P100,000 from Janis (creditor) and they shared the money 50-50. When the debt fell due, the creditor filed a case against one of them. So, one of them is being made to pay the P100,000. Not only his share but also his co-solidary debtor. So if I am the one liable when actually my real liability is only 50,000. What will I do? I will file a third party complaint against my co-debtor for contribution. Example #2: If Andrew and Carlo are guilty of a quasi-delict and the injured party files an action for damages against Andrew only, Andrew may file a third-party complaint against Carlo for contribution, their liability being solidary (Article 2194, New Civil Code) INDEMNIFICATION: Example #1: Two people signed a promissory note in favor of the creditor. But actually the entire amount went to you and none for me. When the note fell due, I was the one sued. So I will file a third-party complaint against you for indemnity. You have to return to me every centavo that I will pay the creditor. Example #2: A surety sued for recovery of debt by the creditor may file a third-party complaint against the principal debtor for indemnity. (Article 2047, New Civil Code) SUBROGATION: Subrogation - You step into the shoes of someone else. Your obligation is transferred to me. EXAMPLE: Where a contract is leased by a lessee and he subleased the property to a third person who is now occupying the property. In effect, the sub-lessee stepped into the shoes of the original lessee. If the property is damaged and the lessor sues the lessee for damages to his leased property, the lessee or sub-lessor can file a third-party complaint and have the sub- lessee for subrogation because actually, you stepped into the shoes when you occupied the leased property. (Articles 1651 and 1654, New Civil Code) For ANY OTHER RELIEF IN RESPECT TO THE OPPONENTS CLAIM, very broad: EXAMPLE: When I buy the property of Mr. Cruz and after a while, here comes Mr. Dee filing a case against me to claim ownership of the land. But I bought it from Mr. Cruz who warranted that he is the real owner. So I will now file third-party complaint against Mr. Cruz to enforce his warranty – warranty against eviction. (Article 1548, New Civil Code) Take note that there is always a connection between the main complaint and the third-party complaint because the condition is “contribution, indemnification, subrogation and any other relief in respect to your opponents claim.” There is always a relation between the third party-complaint and the main complaint against you. Here is a bar question... BAR QUESTION: Janis files a case against Nudj to recover an unpaid load. Now the reason is that Carlo also owes Nudj. Nudj says, “I cannot pay you because there is a person who has also utang to me. What I will pay you depends on his payment to me.” File agad si Nudj ng third-party complaint against Carlo. Is the third-party complaint proper? A: NO. There is no connection between the main action and the 3rd- party complaint – the loan of Nudj to Janis and the loan of Andrew to Nudj. Walang connection. Anong pakialam ni Janis sa utang ni Andrew kay Nudj? Not in respect to his opponent’s claim. BAR QUESTION: How do you determine whether a 3rd-party complaint is proper or improper? What are the tests to determine its propriety? A: Case of CAPAYAS vs. COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE 77 PHIL. 181 HELD: There are four (4) possible tests to determine the propriety of a third-party complaint. In order for it to be allowed, it must pass one of them. That is the reason when you file it, you need the permission of the court to determine whether it is proper or not and the original plaintiff may object to the propriety of the third-party complaint. There are the FOUR TESTS (any one will do): 1. A third-party complaint is proper if it arises out of the same transaction on which plaintiff is based; EXAMPLE: A creditor sued only one solidary debtor. So you can file a third-party complaint for contribution. Anyway, there is only one loan and our liability arises out of the same promissory note 2. A third-party complaint is proper if the third-party’s complaint, although arising out of another transaction, is connected with the plaintiff’s claim. EXAMPLE: The car owner is sued for culpa aquiliana for damages arising from vehicular collision and he files a third-party complaint against the insurance company for indemnity based on the contract of insurance. So it is connected with plaintiff’s claim, and that is precisely the purpose of my insurance coverage. 3. Third party defendant would be liable to the original plaintiff's claim. Although the third party defendant's liability arises out of another transaction. EXAMPLE: Sublease. Roy leased his property to Eric. Eric subleased it to Rudolph. If Roy’s property is damaged, Roy will sue Eric. But Eric will also sue Rudolph. The sub-lessor has the right to file a third- party complaint against the sub-lessee for the damaged leased property which is now occupied by 79
  • 12. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings the sub-lessee. The third-party defendant Rudolph would be liable to plaintiff’s (Roy’s) claim. Rudolph will be liable to Roy for Roy’s claim against Eric although the liability of Rudolph arises out of another transaction (Sub-lease contract) 4. The third party defendant may assert any defense which the third party plaintiff has or may have against plaintiff’s claim. EXAMPLE: Tato is a registered owner of a car and then sold it to Philip. Philip is the actual owner. However, Philip did not register the sale to the LTO. The registered owner is si Tato lang gihapon although he is no longer the real owner. While Philip was driving that car it bumped the car of Lewee Tanduay. Lewee researched the owner of the car at LTO and ang lumabas ay si Tato. So ang ginawa ni Lewee, ang kinasuhan nya ay si Tato na walang malay...under the law, the registered owner is liable. Of course, when Tato got the complaint, “Wala akong alam sa sinasabi nyo, that car is no longer mine. I sold that two years ago, I have no idea what happened.” So obviously, Tato arrived at the conclusion that si Philip and nakabangga. Tato filed a third-party complaint against Philip because he is the real owner. When Philip got the third-party complaint, and because he knows the story, in fact he was the one driving, ang ginawa niya, nilabanan niya ng diretso si Lewee. Meaning, instead of Tato fighting Lewee, Philip fought Lewee directly. Frontal na ba. Sabi ni Philip, “I was not at fault, you (Lewee) are at fault.” So here is a situation where Lewee sues Tato, Tato sues Philip but Philip fights Lewee, as if he is the real defendant, then the third party complaint must be proper. It must be related. So those are the samples of third party complaint which are correct. Take note that there is a close similarity between a third-party complaint and a cross-claim because as we have learned, a cross-claim must also be related to the same action. So we will go to some interesting case on third-party complaint. SAMALA vs. VICTOR 170 SCRA 453 FACTS: This case involves a vehicular accident. Philip, while riding on a passenger jeep owned by Tato, the jeep was bumped by the truck of Lewee, injuring Philip. Philip filed a case for damages arising from breach of contract against Tato. Tato filed a third-party complaint against Lewee. After trial, the court found that Tato has not at fault. The fault is entirely against Lewee . So the action against Tato was dismissed, but the court held that Lewee be directly liable to Philip. It was questioned by Lewee. Lewee claims that is should be Tato who is liable to Philip because Philip did not sue me (Lewee), “Bakit ako ang ma-liable hindi naman ako ang dinemanda ni Philip? So procedurally, I am liable to Tato, Tato is liable to Philip.” ISSUE #1: Can Lewee, a third-party defendant, be held liable directly to Philip, the original plaintiff? HELD: YES, that is possible. In a third-party complaint, normally Lewee is liable to Tato. But Lewee can be made liable to Philip, or Lewee can be made liable to both Philip and Tato because that is covered by the phrase “OR ANY OTHER RELIEF” – so broad that it cover a direct liability of a third party defendant to the original plaintiff. ISSUE #2: How can the court award damages to Philip based on the theory of culpa aquiliana when his complaint is based on culpa contractual? Can Lewee be held liable for culpa-contractual? HELD: YES. That is also possible because “the primary purpose of this rule is to avoid circuitry of action and to dispose of in one litigation, the entire subject matter arising from a particular set of fact it is immaterial that the third- party plaintiff asserts a cause of action against the third party defendant on a theory different from that asserted by the plaintiff against the defendant. It has likewise been held that a defendant in a contract action may join as third- party defendants those liable to him in tort for the plaintiff’s claim against him or directly to the plaintiff.” Another interesting case which is to be compared with the abovementioned case is the 1989 case of SHAFER vs. JUDGE OF RTC OF OLONGAPO CITY 167 SCRA 386 NOTE: This case although it refers to third-party complaint is related to criminal procedure. This is similar to the case of JAVIER where the issue is, is there such a thing as a counterclaim in a criminal case where the offended party did not make a reservation. In SHAFER, is there such a thing as a third-party complaint in a criminal case? FACTS: Shafer while driving his car covered by TPL, bumped another car driven by T. T filed a criminal case against S for physical injuries arising from reckless imprudence. T did not make any reservation to file a separate civil action. So obviously, the claim for civil liability is deemed instituted. Shafer was covered by the insurance, so he filed a third-party complaint against the insurance company insofar as the civil liability is concerned. The insurance company questioned the propriety of d third-party complaint in a criminal case, because according to the insurance company, the third-party complaint is entirely different from the criminal liability. 80
  • 13. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings ISSUE: Whether or not the filing of a third-party complaint in a criminal case is procedurally correct. HELD: Yes, it is proper. There could be a third party complaint in a criminal case because an offense causes two classes of injuries – the SOCIAL and the PERSONAL injury. In this case, the civil aspect of the criminal case is deemed impliedly instituted in the criminal case. Shafer may raise all defenses available to him in so far as the criminal and civil aspects are concerned. Shafer’s claim of indemnity against the insurance company are also the claim by the victim in the criminal claim. Therefore Shafer’s claim against the insurance company is related to the criminal case. So similar to Javier that an accused may also file a compulsory counterclaim in a criminal case when there is no reservation. BUT in the light of the ruling in the case of CABAERO vs. CANTOS, supra The SHAFER ruling has to be set aside for the meantime because there is no such thing as third-party complaint in criminal cases now. In other words, forget it in the meantime. Also, forget counterclaims in criminal cases even if they arose out of the main action. This case refers to JAVIER on whether or not there is such a thing as a compulsory counterclaim in criminal cases. SC said, “Huwag muna samok!” If we will allow it in criminal cases it will only complicate and confuse the case. The attention might be divested to counterclaims or cross- claims or third-party complaints, etc. HELD: “The trial court should confine itself to the criminal aspect and the possible civil liability of the accused arising out of the crime. The counter-claim (and cross-claim or third party complaint, if any) should be set aside or refused cognizance without prejudice to their filing in separate proceedings at the proper time.” We will go to the old case of REPUBLIC vs. CENTRAL SURETY CO. 25 SCRA 641 [1968] FACTS : Hannah filed a case against Rina for a liability amounting to P300,000. So it was filed in RTC. Rina filed a third-party complaint against ConCon Insurance Company for indemnity insurance but the maximum insurance is only P50,000. The insurance company moved to dismiss on the ground that the court has no jurisdiction because third- party complaint is only for P50,000 which is supposed to be within the competence of the MTC. ISSUE: Is the insurance company correct? HELD: NO. The insurance company is wrong. The third-party complaint is only incidental. The third-party complaint need not be within the jurisdiction of the RTC where the principal action is pending because the third- party complaint is really a continuation and an ancillary to the principal action. If the court acquires jurisdiction over the main action, automatically, it acquires jurisdiction over the third-party complain which is mainly a continuation of the principal action. Now, the same situation happened in another case. The case of EASTER ASSURANCE vs. CUI 105 SCRA 642 FACTS : Carol is a resident of Davao City. Cathy is a resident of Cebu City. Carol filed a case before the RTC of Davao City against Cathy. Cathy files a third-party complaint against Joy, a resident of Manila. Is the venue proper? HELD: The venue is proper because the venue of the main action is proper. So automatically third-party complaint is also proper. The third-party has to yield to the jurisdiction and venue of the main action. Now of course, if there’s such a thing as 3rd party complaint, there is also a 4th, 5th, 6th or 7th complaint. That is possible but everything is with respect to his opponent’s claim. EXAMPLE: A’s car was bumped by B. But B contented that the reason that he bumped A’s car was because he was bumped by C and the same goes to C, D, E. B then files a 3rd party complaint against C. C files a 4th party complaint against D. D files a 5th party complaint against E. Meaning, pasahan, ba. They will throw the liability to the one who did it. That is a good hypothetical example of how a fourth, fifth, sixth party complaint can come into play. Sec. 12. Bringing new parties. - When the presence of parties other than those to the original action is required for the granting of complete relief in the determination of a counterclaim or cross- claim, the court shall order them to be brought in as defendants, if jurisdiction over them can be obtained. The best example of Section 12 is the case of: SAPUGAY vs. COURT OF APPEALS 183 SCRA 464 81
  • 14. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings FACTS: Mobil Philippines filed a case against Sapugay, its gasoline dealer. Sapugay filed a answer and interposed a counterclaim for damages against Mobil and included Cardenas (the manager of Mobil) who is not a plaintiff. ISSUE: Whether or not the inclusion of Cardenas in the counterclaim is proper where he is not a plaintiff in the Mobil case. HELD: The inclusion of Cardenas is proper. The general rule that the defendant cannot by a counterclaim bring into the action any claim against persons other than the plaintiff, admits of an exception under this provision (Section 12) – meaning, if it is necessary to include a 3rd person in a counterclaim or cross-claim, the court can order him to be brought in as defendants. In effect, the bringing of Cardenas in the case is sanctioned by the Rules. The case of SAPUGAY should not be confused with the case of: CHAVEZ vs. SANDIGANBAYAN 198 SCRA 282 FACTS: Petitioner Francisco Chavez (former solicitor general) represented the government for PCGG. The case arose out of PCGG cases wherein Enrile was sued for accumulation of his ill-gotten wealth. Enrile filed an answer to the complaint. Enrile contends that the case is harassment suit whose mastermind was the Solicitor General himself. Enrile files a counterclaim against Chavez. (Enrile’s lawyer maybe well aware of the Sapugay case the one sued is the lawyer.) Chavez questioned such counterclaim contending that he was not a plaintiff. Sandiganbayan denied such contention. HELD: The inclusion of plaintiff’s lawyer is improper. “To allow a counterclaim against a lawyer who files a complaint for his clients, who is merely their representative in court and not a plaintiff or complainant in the case would lead to mischievous consequences. A lawyer owes his client entire devotion to his genuine interest, warm zeal in the maintenance and defense of his rights and the exertion of his utmost learning and ability. A lawyer cannot properly attend to his duties towards his client if, in the same case, he is kept busy defending himself.” Q: Is the SC suggesting that a lawyer who sued in a harassment case can get away with it? Does that mean to say that the lawyer is immune from suit? A: NO, the SC does not say a lawyer enjoys a special immunity from damage suits. However, when he acts in the name of the client, he should not be sued in a counterclaim in the very same case where he has filed only as a counsel and not as party. Only claims for alleged damages or other causes of action should be filed in a separate case. Thus, if you feel that the lawyer is acting maliciously, you file a complaint but in a separate case. That’s why the case of Sapugay should not be confused with Chavez. Sec. 13. Answer to third (fourth, etc.) party complaint. - A third (fourth, etc.)-party defendant may allege in his answer his defenses, counterclaims or cross-claims, including such defenses that the third (fourth, etc.)-party plaintiff may have against the original plaintiff in respect of the latter's claim against the third-party plaintiff. (n) ILLUSTRATIONS: A vs. B; B vs. C. Normally, B will defend himself against the complaint of A and C will defend himself in the complaint of B. That is supposed to be the pattern. Normally, C does not file a direct claim against A. But the law allows C in defending himself, to answer the claim of A. The law allows him to file a direct counterclaim against A. If C has the right to frontally meet the action filed by A – meaning, C will fight A directly – if C has the right to assert any defense which B has against A and even for C to litigate against A, then it must be a proper third party complaint. That has happened several times. EXAMPLE: B owns a car which was already sold to C. The trouble is that B never registered the transaction. On the record, B is still the registered owner. Then C, while driving the car, meets an accident and injures A. When A looked at the record, the owner is B. So A files a case against B. So B will file a third party complaint against the real owner (C). Now, C can frontally meet the complaint filed by A. That is the best example where you have the right against the original plaintiff or even assert a counterclaim against him. As a matter of fact, that last test is now incorporated as a new provision (Section 13). In the case of: SINGAPORE AIRLINES vs. COURT OF APPEALS 243 SCRA 143 [1995] FACTS: Aying filed a case against Bugoy. Bugoy filed a third party complaint against and Cyle who wants to frontally meet the main complaint filed by Aying HELD: If that is your purpose, you have to file two (2) answers – you file an answer to the third party complaint and you file a second answer to the main complaint filed by Aying. 82
  • 15. Civil Procedure Rule 6 Kinds of Pleadings “A third-party complaint involves an action separate and distinct from, although related to, the main complaint. A third-party defendant who feels aggrieved by some allegations in the main complaint should, aside from answering the third-party complaint, also answer the main complaint.” Normally, Cyle answers the 3rd party complaint of Bugoy and does not answer to the complaint of Aying. But according to SINGAPORE case, if Cyle feels aggrieved by the allegations of Aying, he should also answer the main complaint of Aying. Practically, he shall answer the 3rd party complaint and the main complaint.  83