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ANG vs.

ANG August 22, 2012 FACTS: Respondent spouses Alan and Em Ang obtained a loan (1992) from petitioner spouses Theodore and Nancy Ang, the former executed a promissory note in favor of the latter wherein they promised to pay, upon demand. Despite repeated demands, Alan and Em failed to pay the petitioners. Petitioners sent a demand letter, but to no avail. Petitioners, who were residing at LA, USA at that time, executed an SPA in favor of Atty. Aceron for the purpose of filing an action against the respondents. Atty. Aceron, in behalf of the petitioners filed a complaint for sum of money (2006) against the respondents with the RTC Quezon City (where the Atty. resides). Respondents moved to dismiss on the grounds of improper venue and prescription and asserted that the complaint against them should be filed in the place where either they or the petitioners reside. RTC denied the MTD, since there exist a SPA, Atty. Aceron (attorney-in-fact), may file in QC. Being the plaintiff, venue may lie where he resides as provided in Sec. 2, Rule 4 of the Rules of Court. Respondents filed an MR, but it was denied. They filed a Petition for Certiorari to the CA asserting that petitioners, that the complaint may only be filed in the RTC Bacolod City, the court of the place where they reside in the Philippines. They further claimed that said attorney, being merely a representative of the petitioners, is not the real party in interest. CA ruled in favor of the respondents and directed the dismissal of the complaint filed by the petitioners. Being the attorney-in-fact is of no moment when it comes to ascertaining the venue of cases filed in behalf of the principal since what should be considered is the residence of the real party in interest. Residence is vital when dealing with venue, the petitioners being residents of LA, which is beyond the territorial jurisdiction, the case should have been filed in Bacolod City. Petitioner sought and MR, but denied.

ISSUE: Whether or not Atty. Aceron, being the attorney-in-fact of petitioner spouses can be considered as real party in interest?

HELD: No. Atty. Aceron is not a real party in interest, thus his residence is immaterial to the venue of the filing of the complaint. Section 2. Parties in interest A real party in interest is the party who stands to be benefited or injured by the judgment in the suit, or the party entitled to the avails of the suit. X x x Interest within the meaning of the Rules of Court means material interest or an interest in issue to be affected by the decree or judgment of the case, as distinguished from mere curiosity about the questioned involved. A real party in interest is the party who, by the substantive law, has the right sought to be enforced. Applying the said rule, Atty. Aceron is not a real party in interest as he does not stand to be benefited or injured by any judgment therein. He was merely appointed as attorney-in-fact limited for the purpose of filing and prosecuting the complaint. It does not mean that he is subrogated in to the rights of petitioners and ought to be considered as real party in interest. Petitioners reliance on Sec. 3, Rule 3 is misplaced because it merely provides that the name or names of the person or persons being represented must be included in the title of the case and shall be considered as the real party in interest, in other words, the principal remains the true party in interest and not the representative.