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Unformatted text preview: gment of the court of origin as to
the surety's liability.
The Court of Appeals found the Bank to have been negligent in having stopped collecting from the
Bureau of Public Works the moneys falling due in favor of the principal debtor, ATACO, before the debt was
fully collected, thereby allowing such funds to be taken and exhausted by other creditors to the prejudice of
the surety, and held that the Bank's negligence resulted in exoneration of respondent Manila Surety &
Fidelity Company. 13 ISSUE:
Whether or not the power of attorney obtained from ATACO was merely in additional security in its
favor, and that it was the duty of the surety, and not that of the creditor, owed see to it that the obligor fulfills
his obligation, and that the creditor owed the surety no duty of active diligence to collect any, sum from the
CA Decision affirmed.
This argument of appellant Bank misses the point. The Court of Appeals did not hold the Bank
answerable for negligence in failing to collect from the principal debtor but for its neglect in collecting the
sums due to the debtor from the Bureau of Public Works, contrary to its duty as holder of an exclusive and
irrevocable power of attorney to make such collections, since an agent is required to act with the care of a
good father of a family (Civ. Code, Art. 1887) and becomes liable for the damages which the principal may
suffer through his nonperformance (Civ. Code, Art. 1884). Certainly, the Bank could not expect that the
Bank would diligently perform its duty under its power of attorney, but because they could not have collected
from the Bureau even if they had attempted to do so. It must not be forgotten that the Bank's power to
collect was expressly made irrevocable, so that the Bureau of Public Works could very well refuse to make
payments to the principal debtor itself, and a fortiori reject any demands by the surety.
Even if the assignment with power of attorney from the principal debtor were considered as mere
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This document was uploaded on 03/11/2014.
- Fall '14