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Distinctions among Actual, Moral, Exemplary, Temperate, Liquidated and Nominal Damages1

ACTUAL MORAL EXEMPLARY TEMPERATE LIQUIDATED NOMINAL


DAMAGES DAMAGES DAMAGES DAMAGES DAMAGES DAMAGES
According to To make good or To enable the injured To serve as a To redress a loss To avoid To vindicate or to
purpose replace the loss party to obtain deterrent to suffered by a controversy on the recognize the
caused by the means, diversion or serious person when the amount of injured party’s
wrong. amusement that will wrongdoings. court is convinced damages, the right to a property
alleviate the moral that there has parties agree on that has been
suffering he has been such a loss the amount to be violated or
undergone, by and the judge is paid in case of invaded.
reason of defendants empowered to breach of contract.
culpable action. calculate
moderate
damages.
According to Claimant must No proof of 1. That the May be recovered If intended as a No proof of
manner of produce competent pecuniary loss is claimant is when the court penalty in pecuniary loss is
determination proof or the best necessary. The entitled to moral, finds that some obligations with a necessary. Proof
evidence obtainable assessment is left to temperate or pecuniary loss has penal cause, proof that a legal right
such as receipts to the discretion of the compensatory been suffered but of actual damages has been violated
justify an award court according to damages; and its amount cannot, suffered by the is what is only
therefore. the circumstances of from the nature of creditor is not required. Usually
each case. However, 2. That the crime the case, be necessary in order awarded in the
Actual or there must be proof was committed proved with that the penalty absence of proof
compensatory that the defendant with 1 or more certainty. may be demanded of actual damages.
damages cannot be caused physical aggravating
presumed but must suffering etc. circumstances or No proof of No proof of
be proved with the quasi‐delict pecuniary loss is pecuniary loss is
reasonable was committed necessary. necessary.

1
UST Golden Notes
certainty. GR: Factual basis with gross
must be alleged. negligence, or in
Aside from the need contracts and
for the claimant to quasi‐contracts the
satisfactorily prove act must be
the existence of the accompanied by
factual basis of the bad faith or done
damages, it is also in wanton,
necessary to prove fraudulent,
its causal relation to oppressive or
the defendant’s act. malevolent
manner.
XPN: Criminal cases.
Moral damages may No proof of
be awarded to the pecuniary loss is
victim in criminal necessary.
proceedings in such
amount as the court
deems just without
need for pleading or
proof of the basis
thereof.
Special or Ordinary Special Special Special Special Special
Ordinary

 Ordinary Damages – those that are generally inherent in a breach of a typical contract
 Special Damages – those which exist because of special circumstances and for which a debtor in good faith can be held liable
if he had been previously informed of such circumstances.