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MAGSAYSAY V. AGAN January 31, 1955 J. A.J.

Reyes Facts: -

But while still in port, it ran aground at the mouth of the Cagayan river, and, attempts to refloat it under its own power having failed, plaintiff had it refloated by the Luzon Stevedoring Co. at an agreed compensation. Once afloat the vessel returned to Manila to refuel and then proceeded to Basco, the port of destination. There the cargoes were delivered to their respective owners or consignees, who, with the exception of defendant, made a deposit or signed a bond to answer for their contribution to the average. P then brought an action at the CFI to make R pay his contribution of P841 o On the theory that the expenses incurred in floating the vessel constitute general average to which both ship and cargo should contribute R denies liability to his amount, alleging, among other things, that the stranding of the vessel was due to the fault, negligence and lack of skill of its master, that the expenses incurred in putting it afloat did not constitute general average, and that the liquidation of the average was not made in accordance with law. lower court found for plaintiff and rendered judgment against the defendant for the amount of the claim, with legal interests. From this judgment defendant had appealed directly to this Court. HOWEVER, it is important to note that it is established that the stranding of plaintiff's vessel was due to the sudden shifting of the sandbars at the mouth of the river which the port pilot did not anticipate. The standing may, therefore, be regarded as accidental Issue: W/N the expenses incurred in floating a vessel so stranded should be considered general average and shared by the cargo owners. Ratio: NO Classification of Averages: O SIMPLE OR PARTICULAR AVERAGES

October 6, 1949 The SS "San Antonio", vessel owned and operated by plaintiff, left Manila bound for Basco, Batanes, vis Aparri, Cagayan o the vessel was with general cargo belonging to different shippers, among them the defendant. The vessel reached Aparri on the 10th of that month, and after a day's stopover in that port, weighed anchor to proceed to Basco. -

A812- Being for the common benefit, gross averages are to be borne by the owners of the articles saved while the expenses incurred in putting plaintiff's vessel afloat may well come under number 2 of article 809-which refers to expenses suffered by the vessel "by reason of an accident of the sea of the force majuere" and should therefore be classified as particular average, the said expenses do not fit into any of the specific cases of general average enumerated in article 811. o No. 6 of this article does mention "expenses caused in order to float a vessel," but it specifically refers to "a vessel intentionally stranded for the purpose of saving it" and would have no application where, as in the present case, the stranding was not intentional. REQUISITES FOR GENERAL AVERAGE (Tolentino):

(1)

A809- include all expenses and damages caused to the vessel or cargo which have not inured to the common benef

A810- to be borne only by the owner of the property gave rise to same GENERAL OR GROSS AVERAGES A811- include "all the damages and expenses which are deliberately caused in order to save the vessel, its cargo, or both at the same time, from a real and known risk"

there must be a COMMON DANGER both the ship and the cargo, after it has been loaded, are subject to the same danger, whether during the voyage, or in the port of loading or unloading; that the danger arises from the accidents of the sea, dispositions of the authority, or faults of men, provided that the circumstances producing the peril should be ascertained and imminent or may rationally be said to be certain and imminent. This last requirement exclude measures undertaken against a distant peril. the evidence does not disclose that the expenses sought to be recovered from defendant were incurred to save vessel and cargo from a common danger. The vessel ran aground in fine weather inside the port at the mouth of a river, a place described as "very shallow". It would thus appear that vessel and cargo were at the time in no imminent danger or a danger which might "rationally be sought to be certain and imminent." It is, of course, conceivable that, if left indefinitely at the mercy of the elements, they would run the risk of being destroyed. But as stated at the above quotation, "this last requirement excludes measures undertaken against a distant peril." It is the deliverance from an immediate, impending peril, by a common sacrifice, that constitutes the essence of general average. In the present case there is no proof that the vessel had to be put afloat to save it from imminent danger. the vessel had to be salvaged in order to enable it "to proceed to its port of destination." it is the safety of the property, and not of the voyage, which constitutes the true foundation of the general average.
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(2) for the common safety part of the vessel or of the cargo or both is sacrificed deliberately. the expenses in question were not incurred for the common safety of vessel and cargo, since they, or at least the cargo, were not in imminent peril. The cargo could, without need of expensive salvage operation, have been unloaded by the owners if they had been required to do so. (3) from the expenses or damages caused follows the successful saving of the vessel and cargo. the salvage operation, it is true, was a success. But as the sacrifice was for the benefit of the vessel to enable it to proceed to destination and not for the purpose of saving the cargo, the cargo owners are not in law bound to contribute to the expenses. (4) the expenses or damages should have been incurred or inflicted after taking proper legal steps and authority The final requisite has not been proved, for it does not appear that the expenses here in question were incurred after following the procedure laid down in article 813 Jarque v. Smith Bell & Co. Jarque owner of Pandan, a motorboat, with a marine insurance policy for P45,000 with the National Union Fire Insurance Company (NUF). It was stated in the rider that the insurance is against "absolute total loss" of the vehicle only. 10/31/28 while on a voyage, ship ran into very heavy sea and it became necessary to jettison a portion of the cargo. NUF was assessed for P2,610 for its contribution to the general average. It refused to contribute because of the fact that the insurance was only for "absolute total loss and to pay proportionate salvage of the declared value." Present action was instituted. RTC: ordered NUF to pay P2,610. ISSUE: W/N insurer is liable for general average despite its "absolute total loss" coverage. HELD: YES. 1. Rider is valid, it prevails over the printed portion of the policy. 2. The liability for contribution in general average is not based on the express terms of the policy, but rest upon the theory that from the relation of the parties and for their benefit, a quasi contract is implied by law. Article 859 of the Code of Commerce is still in force and reads as follows: ART. 859. The underwriters of the vessel, of the freight, and of the cargo shall be obliged to pay for the indemnity of the gross average in so far as is required of each one of these objects respectively. The article is mandatory in its terms, and the insurers, whether for the vessel or for the freight or for the cargo, are bound to contribute to the indemnity of the general average. And there is nothing unfair in that provisions; it simply places the insurer

on the same footing as other persons who have an interest in the vessel, or the cargo therein at the time of the occurrence of the general average and who are compelled to contribute. 3. In this case, it was established that the jettison of the cargo was necessary. It was to the benefit of the underwriter as well as the owner, because if it wasn't done, the whole cargo would have been lost. The underwriter's loss would have been many times as large as the contribution now demanded. RTC is affirmed. PHIL HOME ASSURANCE v. CA Facts: Eastern Shipping Lines, Inc. (ESLI) loaded on board SS Eastern Explorer in Kobe, Japan, the shipments of internal combustion engine parts, ammonium chloride, glue & garments for carriage to Manila and Cebu, freight pre-paid and in good order and condition. While the ship was off Okinawa, the acetylene cylinder located in the accommodation area near the engine room on the main deck level exploded. It caused death and severe injuries to the crew, forced the master and the crew to abandon the ship and the ships constructive total loss and abandonment of the voyage. Hours later, a Fukuda Salvage Co. tugboat towed the vessel for the port of Naha, Japan where fire fighting operations resumed. The cargoes saved were loaded to SS Eastern Mars for delivery to their original ports of destination. ESLI charged the consignees amounts corresponding to additional freight and salvage charges which were all paid by Philippine Home Assurance Corporation (PHAC) under protest for and in behalf of the consignees. PHAC, as subrogee of the consignees, filed a complaint before the RTC Manila against ESLI to recover the sum on the ground that the same were actually damages directly brought about by the fault, negligence, illegal act and/or breach of contract of ESLI.

ESLI contended that it exercised the diligence required by law in the handling, custody and carriage of the shipment; that the fire was caused by an unforeseen event; that the additional freight charges are due and demandable pursuant to the Bill of Lading; and that salvage charges are properly collectible under Act No. 2616, the Salvage Law. RTC ruled in favor of ESLI, which the CA affirmed: ESLI is not at fault or negligent Evidence shows that the ship was seaworthy. The acetylene cylinder has been tested, checked and examined and was certified to have complied with the required safety measures and standards. When the fire was detected, fire fighting operations was immediately conducted but due to the explosion, the crew were unable to contain the fire and had to abandon the ship to save their lives. The fire and resulting explosion was a natural disaster or calamity. The salvage operations conducted by Fukuda Salvage Co. was perfectly a legal operation and charges made on the goods recovered were legitimate charges pursuant to the Salvage Law (Act 2616). Section 1. When in case of shipwreck, the vessel or its cargo shall be beyond the control of the crew, or shall have been abandoned by them, and picked up and conveyed to a safe place by other persons, the latter
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shall be entitled to a reward for the salvage. Those who, not being included in the above paragraph, assist in saving a vessel or its cargo from shipwreck, shall be entitled to like reward. The 3 elements necessary to a valid salvage claim are present, namely (a) a marine peril (b) service voluntarily rendered when not required as an existing duty or from a special contract and (c) success in whole or in part, or that the service rendered contributed to such success. The physical impossibility of the prestation extinguished ESLIS obligation pursuant to the contract of carriage and it is legal and equitable to demand the additional freight. NCC Art 1174. Except in cases expressly specified by law, or when it is otherwise declared by stipulation, or when the nature of the obligation require the assumption or risk, no person shall be responsible for those events which could not be foreseen, or which though foreseen, were inevitable. NCC Art 1266. The debtor in obligations to do shall also be released when the prestation becomes legally or physically impossible without the fault of the obligor. Code of Commerce Art 844. A captain who may have taken on board the goods saved from the wreck shall continue his course to the port of destination; and on arrival should deposit the same, with judicial intervention at the disposal of their legitimate owners. x x x The owners of the cargo shall defray all the expenses of this arrival as well as the payment of the freight which, after taking into consideration the circumstances of the case, may be fixed by agreement or by a judicial decision. The terms and conditions of the Bill of Lading authorize the imposition of additional freight charges in case of forced interruption or abandonment of the voyage. 12. All storage, transshipment, forwarding or other disposition of cargo at or from a port of distress or other place where there has been a forced interruption or abandonment of the voyage shall be at the expense of the owner, shipper, consignee of the goods or the holder of this bill of lading who shall be jointly and severally liable for all freight charges and expenses of every kind whatsoever, whether payable in advance or not that may be incurred by the cargo in addition to the ordinary freight, whether the service be performed by the named carrying vessel or by carrier's other vessels or by strangers. All such expenses and charges shall be due and payable day by day immediately when they are incurred. Issue: Who, among the carrier, consignee or insurer of the goods, is liable for the additional charges or expenses incurred by the owner of the ship in the salvage operations and in the transshipment of the goods via a different carrier - CARRIER! Ratio: In our jurisprudence, fire may not be considered a natural disaster or calamity since it almost always arises from some act of man or by human means. It cannot be an act of God unless caused by lightning or a natural disaster or casualty not attributable to human agency. There is strong evidence indicating that the acetylene cylinder caught fire because of the fault and negligence of respondent ESLI, its captain and its crew. The acetylene cylinder should not have been stored in the accommodation area near the engine room where the heat generated therefrom could cause

the acetylene cylinder to explode by reason of spontaneous combustion. ESLI it exposed its passengers to danger and injury. Passengers could have handled the same or could have lighted and smoke cigarettes while repairing in the accommodation area (which is supposed to be reserved for passengers. The fact that the acetylene cylinder was checked, tested, examined & certified before it was loaded in the vessel only shows that negligence was present in the handling of the acetylene cylinder after it was loaded and while it was on board. Otherwise, it would not have leaked and exploded during the voyage. The Statement of Facts and the Marine Note of Protest issued by Capt. Licaylicay is inadmissible because he was not presented in court to testify to the truth of the facts he stated therein; instead, ESLI presented Junpei Maeda, its Branch Manager in Tokyo and Yokohama, who evidently had no personal knowledge of the facts. Sec. 36, Rule 130 of the Rules of Court that any evidence, whether oral or documentary, is hearsay if its probative value is not based on the personal knowledge of the witness but on the knowledge of some other person not on the witness stand. Hearsay evidence has no probative value unless the proponent can show that the evidence falls within the exceptions to the hearsay evidence rule. It is excluded because the party against whom it is presented is deprived of his right and opportunity to cross-examine the persons to whom the statements or writings are attributed. ESLI can not claim from the consignees for contribution for the expenses because the expenses incurred in saving the cargo can not be considered general average. General or gross averages include all damages and expenses which are deliberately caused in order to save the vessel, its cargo, or both at the same time, from a real and known risk. But the formalities prescribed under Article 813 and 814 of the Code of Commerce in order to incur the expenses and cause the damage corresponding to gross average were not complied with. Oriental Assurance v. CA Facts 1. Panama Sawmill bought 1208 pcs of apitong logs with a total volume of 2000 cubic meters in Palawan. It HIRED Transpacific Towage to transport the logs by sea to Manila and insured it against loss for 1M with Oriental Assurance Corp. 2. The logs were loaded on 2 barges which were towed by one tugboat. But (as fate would have dramatic!) during the voyage, rough seas and strong winds caused damage to one barge resulting in the loss of 497 pcs of logs out of the 598 pieces. Panama demanded payment for the loss but Oriental Assurance refused on the ground that its contracted liability was for TOTAL LOSS ONLY. Unable to convince Oriental to pay its claim, Panama filed a complaint for damages against Ever Insurance too (allegedly also liable!) THUS Panama also filed a complaint against Oriental. TC: PAY, Oriental, PAY! CA: PAY although rate of interest is reduced. However both courts shared the view that the insurance contract should be liberally construed in order to avoid a denial of substantial justice; and that the logs loaded in the 2 barges should be treated separately such that
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3. 4. 5. 6.

the loss sustained by the shipment in one of them may be construed as constructive total loss 7. Oriental Assurance is contending that

Assurance. Pan Malayan Insurance Corp. v. CA Facts: 1. LUZTEVECO offered to ship FAOs cargo of rice seeds to Kampuchea to pass through Vietnam (for logistic reasons) which was insured by Pan Malayan in the amount of 5,250,000. The loading was completed and LUZTEVECO issued Bill of Lading #1. FAO gave instructions to deliver the rice seeds without delay because of the inherent risks of germination and or spoilage. 2. However, LUZTEVECO informed FAO that the shipment returned to Manila after leaving on June 16th before it left for Vietnam on June 21st with the barge being towed by a different tugboat. Since this was an unauthorized deviation, FAO demanded an explanation. 3. On June 26, FAO was advised of the sinking of the barge in the China Sea hence it informed Pan Malayan and later formally filed its claim under the marine insurance policy. FAO was also informed that there was recovery of the loss shipment for which FAO formally filed its claim with LUZTEVECO for compensation of damage to its cargo. 4. Despite repeated demands to replace the same or to pay for the total insured value, LUZTEVECO failed and refused to do so. Pan Malayan also refused to pay for the losses 5. PAN Malayan alleged that it engaged the services of a surveying corporation and found out that 9629 bags of rice seeds were in good order, 23,510 bags sustained wattage of ten to fifteen percent and 983 bags were shortlanded or missing. Recommendation: not compensable under the policy. 6. It was later found out that the 23,510 bags of the shipment had already been sold by LUZTEVECO. Pan Malayan also said that FAO wrote a letter to them signifying its willingness to abandon the proceeds of the sale of the 23k bags and the remaining good order bags but that on Oct 6, Pan Malayan rejected FAOs proposed abandonment. FAO then filed a case against LUZTEVECO and Pan Malayan for the payment of the lost shipment. 7. ISSUE: liable) Ratio: 1. TC: Pan and LUZTEVECO solidarily liable to FAO. W/N there is total loss of the shipment (that would render Pan Malayan HELD: YES The law classifies loss into total or partial. Total loss in turn may be actual or constructive. 78% of the bags of rice seeds were lost. FAO clearly said that when the rice seed would be in contact with water, it would germinate. Under (c) and (d) of SEC130, when the thing is rendered valueless to the owner and when the owner is dispossessed of the thing, there is already
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Issue: W/N Oriental Assurance is liable for payment of the entire shipment (W/N there was ACTUAL total loss) Held: Sadly, NO there wasnt even a constructive loss Ratio: 1. Whether a contract is entire or severable is a question of intention to be determined by the language employed by the parties. 2. The policy in question shows that the subject matter insured was the entire shipment of 2000 cubic meters of apitong logs. The fact that the logs were loaded in 2 different barges did not make the contract several and divisible as to the items insured. The logs on the 2 barges were NOT separately valued or separately insured. Only one premium was paid for the entire shipment, making for only one cause or consideration. More importantly, the insurers liability was for TOTAL LOSS ONLY. An actual total loss is caused by a. b. c. d. 5. 6. A total destruction of the thing insured The irretrievable loss of the thing by sinking or by being broken up Any damage to the thing which renders it valueless Any other event which effectively deprives the owner of the possession, etc

3.

4.

A constructive loss is one which gives to a person insured the right to abandon. CA treated the loss as constructive for the purpose of computing the more than of the logs actually lost, considered the cargo in one barge as separate from the logs in the other >> WRONG! The logs involved although placed in 2 barges were not separately valued by the policy nor separately insured The logs having been insured in one inseparable unit, the correct basis for determining the existence of constructive loss is the totality of the shipment of the logs. Since the shipment of those 497 pieces does not exceed 75% coz its only 41.45%, the shipment can not be said to have sustained a constructive total loss under Sec 139.

7. 8.

9.

10. IN THE ABSENCE OF EITHER ACTUAL OR CONSTRUCTIVE LOSS, there can be no recovery by the insured Panama against the insurer, Oriental

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actual loss. 3. There were 27,992 bags (damaged and lost) of rice seeds out of the 34,122 bags were rendered valueless The law states that complete physical destruction of the subject matter is not essential to constitute an actual total lost. Such a loss may exist where the form and specie of the thing is destroyed, although the materials of which it consisted still exists. Proof that there is total loss (explained by CA)

4.

a.
b.

There was the sinking of the barge (it had to be refloated, court said, what is the use of refloating if it didnt sink? ) What is mentioned in the law as the risk or peril insured against is sinking. This is the risk or peril covered by the Marine Insurance.

the purpose of determining the circumstances of the fire and the value or amount of loss and damage to the merchandise insured under said policies( Both required the petitioner to submit certain papers and documents) Because of plaintiff's non-compliance or failure to submit the required documents and the adjusters' demand in subsequent letters, defendants rejected plaintiffs claims. Plaintiff presented: A merchandise inventory as of 31 December 1959, which he had allegedly submitted on 15 January 1960 to the Bureau of Internal Revenue. The inventory reflected the total value of stocks of the CMC Trading at P328,202.67. The plaintiff claims purchases for the month of January 1960 in the amount of P34,505.08 and sales in the amount of P12,000, thus the resulting balance of the stocks allegedly burned was estimated by the plaintiff to be P350,707.75 ISSUE: Is Plaintiff entitled to recover? Held: NO Ratio: 6 of the invoices that plaintiff submitted to the adjusters uncover a clear case of fraud and misrepresentation. 1. The purchase invoice from Western Pacific Industrial Development Co. for powder puffs, ballpen filler, rubber band and ballpen plastic body totalling P76,525.00 was denounced as fake by the former manager, Pablo S. Sison. Moreover, WHY SHOULD A LOGGING COMPANY BUY RUBBER BANDS AND POWDER PUFFS? Good job lawyer. 2. The invoice from Victoria Commercial Corporation for P33,800.00 is, likewise, dubious. On its face, it shows that the address of the company is "303 Trade & Commerce Building, J. Luna, Manila, Philippines," bu it showed that no company by that name was registered by the Securities and Exchange Commission. 3. Again, the MJC Trading Enterprise's invoice for P37,176.00 indicates the company's address to be "308 T & C Building, J. Luna, Manila", but there is no such room in the building mentioned nor any such company registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. 4. Another fictitious invoice is that supposedly issued by Cosmopolitan Commercial Enterprises for P37,800.00 for sales of "mechanical pencil plastic body," fountain pens, and tape measures. This establishment is a single proprietorship belonging to Trinidad M. Lim; it is not engaged in the kind of merchandise purportedly sold, as per the invoice, nor issue this kind of invoice, nor the signature as that of Mrs. Lim appearing there is genuine, according to the husband of the owner, Benjamin Chua Meer, who manages the enterprise. 5. and 6. There are two (2) invoices supposedly issued by Nelina Trading on 2 October 1959 and 17 October 1959, respectively, for purchases aggregating
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5.

FAO was never compensated for this. Insurance Code states that in case of total loss in Marine Insurance, the assured is entitled to recover from the underwriter the whole amount of the subscription. It doesnt matter whether there was a valid notice of abandonment made by FAO because theres no constructive loss here but actual total loss. Upon actual loss, notice of abandonment isnt necessary for payment already.

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Yu Ban Chuan v. Fieldmens Insurance Co. FACTS: March, 1959, plaintiff Yu Ban Chuan began his business enterprise under the name of "CMC Trading," which was engaged in the wholesale dealing in general merchandise and school supplies. The business was insured with Fieldmens Insurance Co. in an open policy limiting its liability to 200,000 for one year. Yu Ban Chuan insured it again with Paramount Surety with an open policy limited to 140,000 for one year. Fieldmens then acknowledged the existence of its co-insurance with Paramount. Then while both insurances were in force, the premises of Yu Ban Chuan was destroyed by FIRE! The next day after the occurrence of the fire, plaintiff verbally notified the respective agents of the defendantsinsurers of such incident H. H. Bayne Adjustment Co. and Manila Adjustment Co., adjusters of defendants Fieldmen's and Paramount, respectively, executed "non-waiver" agreements for

P63,069.00. A check at the company's supposed address failed to show the existence of the company, and the records of the Bureau of Commerce show that it went out of business on 13 April 1959 The plaintiff adheres to the inventory as the immaculate basis for the actual worth of stocks that were burned, on the ground that it was made from actual count, and in compliance with law. But this inventory is not binding on the defendants, since it was prepared without their intervention. True, there were merchandise that were actually destroyed by fire. But when fraud is conceived, what is true is subtly hidden by the schemer beneath proper and legal appearances, including the preparation of the inventory Shielding himself under Section 82 of the Insurance Act, the plaintiff asserts that in submitting his proof of loss he was "not bound to give such proof as would be necessary in a court of justice". The assertion is correct, but does not give him any justification for submitting false proofs. Their falsity is the best evidence of the fraudulent character and the unmeritoriousness of plaintiff's claim.

PHILIPPINE AMERICAN INSURANCE COMPANY v CA [344 SCRA 620 (November 15, 2000)] Nature: Petition for review on certiorari of a decision of the CA. Ponente: J. Gonzaga-Reyes Facts: January 9: 1989: Phil-Am received from Florence Pulido an application for life insurance policy with a face value of P100,000 and naming her sister, Eliza Pulido as beneficiary. Feb. 11, 1989: Phil-Am issued a life insurance policy on the sole basis of the application since it was a non-medical insurance (did not require medical examination) April 1992: Eliza filed a claim with Phil-Am saying that Florence died of acute pneumonia on September 10, 1991. Phil-Am withheld payment saying that the policy was null and void from the beginning since Florence (according to their investigations) was already dead at the time the application for the policy was submitted to them. 3 Investigations by Phil-Am: o 1st: by Dr. Briones with an attached questionnaire answered by Ramaon Piganto, brother-in-law of Florence; in the said questionnaire Ramon said that Florence was dead sonce 1988 Ramon contested this at trial saying he was made to sign a blank coupon bond; Dr. Briones was never called on to testify BASED on this Angalato (Phil-Ams Life Claims Manager) said that even before Eliza filed her claim, the Claims Committee had already declared the policy null and void. o 2nd: by Ferdinand Tanchoco saying he interviewed Remylyn, Ramons daughter and Florences 14 year old niece saying that her aunt died even before she was born although at trial Tanchoco testitfied that Elizas information as to the death of Florence was consistent with the one in the entries of the death certificate found in the Local Civil Register of La Union

3rd: by Dr. Briones again saying that neighbors (who refused to give names and testify) claim that Florence died in 1985 again Dr. Briones was not called to testify during trial Elizas evidence: o Testimony by Dr. Gutierrez, the Municipal Health officer that he issued a death certificate saying that Florence did indeed die of acute pneumonia on September 10, 1991 at around 4pm, and saying that he treated her on September 8 and 9 (also shown in the death certificate) o Villano: neighbor who testified that he was there when Dr. Gutierrez attended to Florence and also during the latters wake. RTC: Eliza can claim on policy the face value of P100,000 o Correctness of entries in the Certificate of Death o Phil-Am failed to prove fraud Only hearsay evidence as to the reports of Dr. Briones Testimony of Remylyn recounted by Tanchoco also hearsay o No legal interest because there was no unreasonable delay in Phil-Ams decision to withhold since they based it on an alleged fraud. CA affirmed in toto

Issue: WON the Death certificate was valid proof of loss. Held/Ratio: YES. The question of fraud is a legal question that the SC did not pass upon; it declared that the findings of the TC are binding and no need to disturb them. Death certificates, and notes by a municipal health officer prepared in the regular performance of his duties, are prima facie evidence of facts therein stated. A duly-registered death certificate is considered a public document and the entries found therein are presumed correct, unless the party who contests its accuracy can produce positive evidence establishing otherwise. Phil-Ams contention that the death certificate is suspect because Dr. Gutierrez was not present when Florence died, and knew of Florences death only through Ramon Piganto, does not merit a conclusion of fraud. No motive was imputed to Dr. Gutierrez for seeking to perpetuate a falsity in public records. Phil-Am was likewise unable to make out any clear motive as to why Ramon Piganto would purposely lie. Mere allegations of fraud could not substitute for the full and convincing evidence that is required to prove it. A failure to do so would leave intact the presumption of good faith and regularity in the performance of public duties, which was the basis of both respondent court and the trial court in finding the date of Florences death to be as Eliza maintained. Disposition: Petition denied.