f. In hearing a Motion for Summary Judgment, the judge is asked not to try the issue but to determine whether the issue is meritorious. Summary Judgment should not be granted if there is a triable issue. The court is not called to pass upon the evidence, and conduct a full-blown trial on the merits. g. The test, therefore, of a motion for summary judgment is whether the pleadings, affidavits and exhibits in support of the motions are sufficient to overcome the opposing papers and to justify a finding as a matter of law that there is no defense to the action or the claim is clearly meritorious. h. In Motions for Summary Judgment, the plaintiff must prove that there is a cause of action, and that the defense is interposed merely to delay the proceedings. Once this burden is discharged, it is up to the defendant to show facts entitling him to a defense on the merits. i. In this case: i. When injury arises during the course of being transported under a Contract of Carriage, there is a presumption of fault on the part of the common carrier, which can only be overcome if the Common
Carrier proves that it exercised extraordinary diligence or if is able to show that the injury was caused by a fortuitous event. ii. In order to constitute a fortuitous event that would exempt a person from responsibility, it is necessary that 1. the event must be independent of the human will; 2. the occurrence must render it impossible for the obligor to fulfill his obligation in a normal manner; and 3. the obligor must be free of a concurrent or contributory fault or negligence. iii. Here, the defendants were able to show through the supporting documents attached to its Motion for Summary Judgment, that the injury was caused by a fortuitous event, namely the collision of the two pickup trucks which caused one of the trucks to hit the jeep. iv. It was thus incumbent on Estrada, the plaintiff, to rebut the proof presented by the defendants in order to sustain his claim. Estrada failed to controvert the evidence which shows that incident was caused by factors outside the defendants’ control and that they were free of contributory negligence. j. The present petition is premature, since the order of the Judge was interlocutory (as it set a date for hearing with regard to damages due), the remedy available to plaintiff is to move for the setting aside of the order by the presentation of opposing affidavits showing that, other than the issue as to the amount or extent of damages, there is a genuine issue of fact on the carrier's liability. DISPOSITIVE PORTION ACCORDINGLY, the petition for certiorari with prohibition is dismissed, without special pronouncement as to costs. SEPARATE OPINION Barredo, J., concurring 1. This decision does not mean that the Court is upholding the questioned order as the summary. The said order must be
construed as nothing but an interlocutory one holding that respondents have sufficiently established the bases for a summary judgment, which will be rendered after the court has received and
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- Spring '16
- Ms. Eva hernandez
- Pleading, Appellate court