08_Iniego vs. Purganan.doc - TORTS INIEGO-V-PURGANAN PETITIONER ARTEMIO INIEGO GR NUMBER G.R No 166876 DATE PONENTE CHICO-NAZARIO J DEFENDANT\/s

08_Iniego vs. Purganan.doc - TORTS INIEGO-V-PURGANAN...

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TORTS INIEGO-V.-PURGANAN GR NUMBER: G.R. No. 166876. DATE: March 24, 2006. PONENTE : CHICO-NAZARIO, J.: PETITIONER: ARTEMIO INIEGO DEFENDANT/s: HONORABLE JUDGE GUILLERMO G. PURGANAN, in his official capacity as Presiding Judge of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 42, City of Manila, and FOKKER C. SANTOS NATURE OF THE ACTION: this is a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court urg ing the Supreme Court to reverse the 28 October 2004 Decision and 26 January 2005 Resolution of the Court of Appeals, Eighth Division, in CA-G.R. SP No. 76206 denying due course to the petition for certiorari filed by petitioner under Rule 65, elevating the 21 October 2002 Omnibus Order and the 21 January 2003 Order of the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 42, City of Manila. FACTS GUIDE: (DETAILS MATTER) -1 March 2002: private respondent Fokker Santos filed a complaint for quasi-delict and damages against Jimmy T. Pinion, the driver of a truck involved in a traffic accident, and against petitioner Artemio Iniego, as owner of the said truck and employer of Pinion. The complaint stemmed from a vehicular accident that happened on 11 December 1999, when a freight truck allegedly being driven by Pinion hit private respondent’s jitney which private respondent was driving at the time of the accident. -24 August 2002: private respondent filed a Motion to Declare defendant in Default allegedly for failure of the latter to file his answer within the final extended period. -28 August 2002: petitioner filed a Motion to Admit and a Motion to Dismiss the complaint on the ground, among other things, that the RTC has no jurisdiction over the cause of action of the case. -21 October 2002: public respondent Judge Guillermo G. Purganan, acting as presiding judge of the RTC, Branch 42, Manila, issued the assailed Omnibus Order denying the Motion to Dismiss of the petitioner and the Motion to Declare Defendant in Default of the private respondent.(Ground for the dismissal of the Motion to declare the defendant in default: The court believed the assertion of Iniego that he never received the decion rendered on 28 Aug. 2002. “The explanation of defendant IÑEGO has merit. The order dated 12 August 2002 was sent to a wrong address, thus defendant IÑEGO did not receive it. Since it was not received, he was not aware that the court would grant no further extension. The Motion to Admit Motion to Dismiss has to be granted and the Motion to declare Defendant IÑEGO [in default] has to be DENIED”Ground for the denial of the Motion to dismiss: “The plaintiff opines that this court has exclusive jurisdiction because the cause of action is the claim for damages, which exceeds P400,000.00. The complaint prays for actual damages in the amount of P40,000.00, moral damages in the amount of P300,000.00, and exemplary damages in the amount of P150,000.00. Excluding attorney’s fees in the amount of P50,000.00, the total amount of damages being claimed is P490,000.00. Proceeding on the assumption that the cause of action is the claim of (sic) for damages in the total amount of P490,000.00, this court has jurisdiction. But is the main cause of action the claim for damages? The court said that the main cause of action of the petition is not a claim for damages but of quasi
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