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Article 1174

Article 1174 is about the general rule and the exceptions on the liability of a person
in the non-performance of his obligation due to events that cannot be foreseen or
can be foreseen, but impossible to avoid, these are collectively known as fortuitous
events. Fortuitous events may either be an act of man such as war, fire, robbery,
murder, etc. or act of God such as earthquake, flood, rain, etc.
There are 2 kinds of fortuitous event:
Ordinary fortuitous event-refers to an event which usually happens or which could have been
reasonably foreseen. example: tropical storms, floods
Extra-ordinary fortuitous event- refers to an event which does not usually happen and which could not
have been reasonably foreseen. examples: fire, war, pestilence, unusual flood (Ondoy), locust,
earthquake

Requisites of a fortuitous event.


1). The event must be independent of the human will or at least of the debtors will
This means that the event was beyond the control of the debtor.
2). The event could not be foreseen, or if foreseen, is inevitable
This means that the event cannot be anticipated or if anticipated, is impossible
to avoid
3). The event must be of such a character as to render it impossible for the debtor
to comply with his obligation In a normal manner
This means that an event which was beyond the debtors control had restricted
him from doing his responsibility.
4). The debtor must be free from any participation in, or the aggravation of, the
injury to the creditor, that is, there is no concurrent negligence.
This means that the debtor had no participation in the event which caused the delay
or non-performance of the obligation
Example: When Mr. A of Tacloban Cement Corporation entered into an agreement
with Mr. B of Sogod, Southern Leyte to deliver 100 bags of cement on June 5, 2014
but while on its way to deliver the cement, a landslide occurred causing damaged
to the cement and non-performance of his obligation to Mr. B. In this case the four
requisites to be considered as fortuitous event were present, hence the obligation
of Mr. A is extinguished.

Article 1174 also provides for three (3) exceptions where a person may be held
liable for the loss or damages due to fortuitous events.
1). When expressly specified by law
a. the debtor is guilty of fraud, negligence, or delay. Or contravention of the tenor
of the obligation.
b. The debtor has promised to deliver the same thing to two or more persons who
do not have the same interest.
c. the obligation to deliver a specific thing arises from a crime.
d. the thing to be deliver is generic.

2). When declared by stipulation


This means that details agreed upon is clearly stipulated in the contract such as the
date of delivery. If the materials were delivered by Mr. A not on the exact date as

stated in the contract and these were damaged due to fortuitous events, the
obligation of Mr. A is not extinguished.
3). When the nature of the obligation requires the assumption of risk.

Elements for exemption from liability


To exempt the obligor from liability under Article 1174 of the Civil Code, for a breach of an obligation due
to an "act of God," the following must concur: (a) the cause of the breach of the obligation must be
independent of the will of the debtor; (b) the event must be either unforseeable or unavoidable; (c) the
event must be such as to render it impossible for the debtor to fulfill his obligation in a normal manner;
and (d) the debtor must be free from any participation in, or aggravation of the injury to the creditor. [13]

Effect of negligence

Article 1174
Article 1174 provides for the general rule that no person shall be responsible for
those events which could not be foreseen, or which though foreseen, were
inevitable. This means that a person cannot be held liable for the loss or damages in
the non-performance of his obligation due to fortuitous events or events which is
either impossible to foresee or impossible to avoid such as war, fire, earthquake,
flood, etc.
However, article 1174 also provides for the three (3) exceptions in which a person
may be held liable for such loss or damages in the non-performance of his
obligation due to fortuitous events.
These exceptions are:
(1) when expressly specified by law,
-this means that a person may be held liable for the loss or damages if the law
expressly provides that such person is liable even in cases of fortuitous events.
(2) when declared by stipulation
-this means that a person may be held liable for the loss or damages if it is
stipulated in the contract that the debtor will still be liable even in cases of
fortuitous events. Example: Kaiser agreed to deliver a bulldog to Kenneth, rain or
shine, then the bulldog dies because of flood brought by the rain, Kaiser is still liable
to the loss or damages suffered by Kenneth.
(3) when the nature of the obligation requires the assumption of risks.
-this means that the obligation is not extinguished even when the damaged is
caused by fortuitous events if the assumption of risk is clearly stated in the contract
like in the case of insurance contracts
What is a fortuitous event?
These are events which cannot be foreseen, or which though foreseen, cannot be
avoided. It may be either an act of man such as war, fire, robbery, murder or an act
of God such as earthquakes, flood, rain, eruption of volcano.
There are 2 kinds of fortuitous events, 1 is ordinary fortuitous events, which are
events that normally happen, reasonable foreseeable and inevitable (like flooding
during a typhoon) and 2nd Extraordinary fortuitous event, which cant be foreseen or
reasonably foreseen and dont usually happen (like war).

Requisites of a fortuitous event.


1). The event must be independent of the human will or at least of the debtors will
This means that the event was beyond the control of the debtor.
2). The event could not be foreseen, or if foreseen, is inevitable
This means that the event cannot be anticipated or if anticipated, is impossible
to avoid
3). The event must be of such a character as to render it impossible for the debtor
to comply with his obligation In a normal manner
This means that an event which was beyond the debtors control had restricted
him from doing his responsibility.
4). The debtor must be free from any participation in, or the aggravation of, the
injury to the creditor, that is, there is no concurrent negligence.
This means that the debtor had no participation in the event which caused the delay
or non-performance of the obligation

Example: When Mr. A of Tacloban Cement Corporation entered into an agreement


with Mr. B of Sogod, Southern Leyte to deliver 100 bags of cement on June 5, 2014
but while on its way to deliver the cement, a landslide occurred causing damaged
to the cement and non-performance of his obligation to Mr. B. In this case the four
requisites to be considered as fortuitous event were present, hence the obligation
of Mr. A is extinguished.

Art. 1174. Except in cases expressly specified by the law, or when it is otherwise
declared by stipulation, or when the nature of the obligation requires the assumption
of risk, no person shall be responsible for those events which could not be foreseen,
or which, though foreseen, were inevitable.

Definition. Ito ang Fortuitous Event, o mga bagay na hindi inaasahan, o kahit inaasahan
ay hindi mapipigilan.
Ang tawag ng iba dito ay Act of God. Magandang halimbawa nito ay bagyo, lindol,
pagtama ng kidlat, etc. Ang terminong ito ay ginagamit interchangeably with Force
Majeure or a superior or irresistible force which results to injuries to another. Ang Force
Majeureay mga bagay na gawa ng tao tulad ng riot, giyera o
pagnanakaw, while ang Fortuitous Event ay mga kalamidad.
Although ang pagbubuntis ay bagay na hindi inaasahan, o inaasahan ngunit hindi mapigilan
dahil sa libog, hindi ito masasabing fortuitous event.

General Rule. As a rule, ang fortuitous event ay bagay na magsasabla sa isang debtor sa
hindi pagtupad ng kanyang obligasyon. Tulad ng halimbawa natin, hindi liable ang fastfood
chain kung hindi nila ma-deliver ang inorder na pagkain dahil sa matinding baha at pagulan. Ganito rin ang sabi ng ibang probisyon ng New Civil Code:

Art. 1262. An obligation which consists in the delivery of a determinate thing shall be
extinguished if it should be lost or destroyed without the fault of the debtor, and
before he has incurred in delay.
When by law or stipulation, the obligor is liable even for fortuitous events, the loss of
the thing does not extinguish the obligation, and he shall be responsible for
damages. The same rule applies when the nature of the obligation requires the
assumption of risk.
Exceptions. Hindi porque may lindol, bagyo o baha, e wala na agad pananagutan ang
isang taong may obligasyon.

1) When the law provides. Kung ang batas mismo ang nagsabi na hindi lusot ang
isang debtor kahit may fortuitous event, walang magagawa kundi magbayad. Isang
halimbawa ay ang mga pagawaan ng sasakyan na kailangang mag parehistro sa DTI at
kumuha ng insurance para sa mga sasakyang nakaparada sa kanila upang kumpunihin (PD
1572). At kung pinasok ng baha ang pagawaan ng sasakyan at nasira lahat, sabit ang
pagawaan kung wala siyang insurance, dahil tinakda mismo ito ng batas.
2) Delay. Ayon sa Art. 1262, kung may delay o hindi pagtupad sa oras na tinakda, maaring
managot pa rin ang debtor.
Example: Bumili si Bon ng Bulldog kay Joel upang ipares sa kanyangSchitzu at magbreed ng BullSchit. Lunes dapat ide-deliver ni Joel angBulldog kay Bon, ngunit hindi ito
nagawa. Martes, kumulog at tinamaan ng kidlat ang Bulldog, syempre patay. Taragis! Hindi
magagamit na dahilan ni Joel ang fortuitous event dahil may delay na siya sa simula pa
lamang.Lunes, dapat nagbi-breed na sana ng BullShcit si Bonn, ngunit hindi ito tinupad ni
Joel.
3) When the obligation so provides. Pwedeng pag-usapan ng partido na
hindi covered ng fortuitous event ang kontrata. Tulad ng halimbawa sa taas, kung pinagusapan ni Bon at Joel na kailangang i-deliver angBulldog, umulan man o bumagyo, at
nalunod ang aso dahil sa baha, may pananagutan pa rin si Joel.
4) When the nature of obligation requires assumption of risks. Kung ang Bulldog ni
Joel ay insured, at namatay dahil sa fortuitous event bago ma-deliver kay Bon, babayaran
ito ng Insurance Company, kung mayActs of God provision sa insurance policy. E yun nga
mismo ang kontrata ni Joel at ng Insurance Company. Assumption of risk. Yun ang
binabayaran dun.
If Mr. A purchased a car and it was insured and then was totally damaged due to a super
typhoon, the Insurance Company will pay Mr. A if the Act of God is stated in the policy. The
assumption of risk is what is being paid by the insurance company.

5) When the loss caused by debtors fault. May bagyo nga, kaso naman pinabayaan ni
Joel ang Bulldog sa labas ng gate at nagkatrangkaso, ayon namatay. Hindi parin lusot si
Joel kay Bon.

Effect of fortuitous event upon the thing delivered. Dahil safortuitous event hindi nadeliver ang Bulldog ni Bonn. Ano epekto? Ediquits. Wala nang obligasyon si Joel na
magbigay ng aso. Yan ay kung ang bagay ay specific or determinate thing, ayon sa
prinsipyong res perit domino (the thing perishes with the owner). Ibig sabihin
ang Bulldog na binili ni Bon ay pinili niya mismo mula sa 10 alagang Bulldog ni Joel, na
nagngangalang Asol. Kapag namatay si Asol dahil sa fortuitous event, wala nang
pananagutan si Joel.

Pero kung ang Bulldog na binili ni Bon ay generic, kahit sa sino sa 10 alagang aso ni Joel,
at namatay ang isa dito dahil sa fortuitous event, dapat pa rin i-deliver ni Joel
ang Bulldog kay Bon mula sa natitirang 9.
Hindi lahat ng bagay isinisisi sa bagyo. Minsan ang tao ay may kasalanan din.
An obligor becomes liable to the loss of the thing through fortuitous event when he committed fraud, negligence,
delay, or contravention of tenor in the obligation.