Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 2

Francisco X. Velez, defendant-appellant and Beatriz P.

Wassmer,
plaintiff-appellee (G.R. No. L-20089, 26 December 1964)
Doctrines
A mere breach of promise to marry is not an actionable wrong. But it is
different when two people formally set a wedding and go through all the
above-described preparation and publicity, but one party (without valid
reasons) walked out of said marriage ceremony when it is about to be
solemnized, such act is palpably and unjustifiably contrary to good
customs.
If the defendant acted in a wanton, fraudulent, reckless, oppressive, or
malevolent manner, exemplary damages may be awarded by the courts.
Legal Provisions Articles 21, 2219 (item 10), and 2232 of the New Civil
Code (NCC).
Article 21 states that any person who willfully causes loss or injury to
another in manner that is contrary to morals, good customs or public policy
shall compensate the latter for the damage.
Article 2219 (item 10) states that moral damages may be recovered in the
following and analogous cases: acts and actions referred to in articles 21, 26,
27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34, and 35.
Article 2232 states that in contracts and quasi-contracts, the court may
award exemplary damages if the defendant acted in a wanton, fraudulent,
reckless, oppressive, or malevolent manner.
Facts On 23 August 1954, plaintiff Beatriz Wassmer and defendant
Francisco Velez applied for a license to contract marriage, which was
subsequently issued, and their wedding was set for 4 September 1954. There
were invitations printed and distributed to relatives, friends and
acquaintances; the bride-to-be's trousseau, party dresses and other apparel
for the important occasion were purchased, and dresses for the maid of
honor and the flower girl were prepared. A matrimonial bed, with accessories
was bought, bridal showers were given and gifts received.
Two days before the wedding (2 September 1954), Francisco, who was then
28 years old, simply left a note for Beatriz stating:
Dear Bet

Will have to postpone wedding My mother opposes it. Am leaving on the


Convair today.
Please do not ask too many people about the reason why That would only
create a scandal.
ARCHIBALD JOSE T. MANANSALA
CEU School of Law and Jurisprudence, Juris Doctor 3rd Year
A.Y. 2015-2016

Francisco X. Velez, defendant-appellant and Beatriz P. Wassmer,


plaintiff-appellee (G.R. No. L-20089, 26 December 1964)
Paquing.
He enplaned to his home city in Mindanao, and the day before the wedding
(3 September 1954), he wired Beatriz that:
NOTHING CHANGED REST ASSURED RETURNING VERY SOON APOLOGIZE
MAMA PAPA LOVE.
PAKING
He never returned and nothing was heard from him again. As a result,
Beatriz sued him for damages. Francisco did not file an answer and was
declared in default. On 29 April 1955, judgment was rendered ordering him
to pay Beatriz P2000.00 as actual damages, P25000.00 as moral and
exemplary damages, P2500.00 as attorney's fees, and costs of suit. He
asserts in support of his motion for new trial and reconsideration that the
judgment is contrary to law because there is no provision of the (New) Civil
Code authorizing an action for breach of promise to marry.
Issues, ruling and verdict of the Supreme Court
(1) Whether Francisco Velez can be sued for damages on the ground of
breach of (his) promise to marry Beatriz Wassmer? YES. The Court
ruled that surely this is not a case of mere breach of promise to marry.
As stated, mere breach of promise to marry is not an actionable wrong.
But to formally set a wedding and go through all the above-described
preparation and publicity, only to walk out of it when the matrimony is
about to be solemnized, is quite different. Such act of Velez was held
by the Court as palpably and unjustifiably contrary to good customs for
which he must be held answerable in damages in accordance with
Article 21 of NCC.
(2) Whether exemplary and moral damages can be recovered by Beatriz
Wassmer? YES, since under the circumstances in the present case,
Francisco clearly acted in a wanton, reckless, (and) oppressive
manner for walking out of a soon-to-be solemnized marriage
ceremony (without any valid reason).
The lower courts judgment is AFFIRMED by the Supreme Court.

ARCHIBALD JOSE T. MANANSALA


CEU School of Law and Jurisprudence, Juris Doctor 3rd Year
A.Y. 2015-2016