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Villa Rey Transit v CA

Concepcion, CJ
FACTS:

Twenty-nine year-old Policronio Quintos Jr was aboard an Isuzu First Class


passenger bus (Lingayen to Manila route) when it hit a bullcart filled with hay
and with a bamboo pole placed on top of the hayload.
After the collision, the bamboo hit the face of Quintos, who fell from his seat
because of the impact. The pole landed on his left eye and the left part of his
face was fractured.
He was taken to the hospital but he died on the same day due to traumatic
shock due to cerebal injuries.
His sisters Trinidad, Prima, and Julita are his sisters and his only surviving
heirs. They brought an action against Villa Rey Transit for breach of contract
of carriage and to recover the aggregate amount of P63,750. They attribute
the death of their brother to the negligence of the driver.
The Trial Judge granted them their prayer of an award of P63,750 even
though evidence showed that the aggregate amount of loss (wake and burial
expenses, loss of incomeetc) totalled P79,615.95.
This was affirmed by the CA.

WN the award of P63,750 was proper? NO

2 factors are considered in determining the amount of recoverable damages


o Number of years on the basis of which the damages shall be computed
o Rate at which the losses sustained by the respondent should be fixed
First factor: life expectancy
o Life expectancy = [80-30] x 2/3
Cab: Quintos (29 yo when he died) had a life expectancy of 33
1/3 years
Formula was objected to by the PET and used Alcantara v Surro
to bolster its claim. In the said case, the life expectancy was
28.90, but the damages were computed using 4 years as a basis
Determination of indemnity has no fixed basis. Much is left to the discretion
of the court considering the moral and material damages involved. There can
be no exact or uniform rule for measuring the value of human life and the
measure of damages cannot be arrived at by precise mathematical
calculation, but the amount recoverable depends on the particular facts and
circumstances of each case.
o COURT did not find the claims of Quintos sisters, that bonuses should
be included in the computation, to be meritorious. Objection of PET
that the fourth year award trebled when in contrast to other
employees, was not sustained as well.
Second factor: rate

PET is assailing the fact that the damages awarded will have to be paid
upon finality of the decision when what is being sought to be
indemnified will be suffered years later
o SC: This is true and that is why Alcantara points out an absence of a
fixed basis. It is also offset by the fact that the liability of the PET had
been fixed at the rate of P2,184/year which is the annual salary of
Quintos at the time of his death, as a young training asst in the
Bacnotan Cement Industries Inc
Determination of losses
o To the heirs: not the full amount of his earnings but of the support they
would have received had he not died
Earning capacity = net earning capacity necessary expenses
for deceaseds own living OR
Earning capacity = total of the earnings expenses necessary in
the creation of those earnings living and incidental expenses
THUS,
o Court fixed deceaseds expenses at P1,184 leaving P1,000 a year,
which amounts to P33,333.33 for his 33 1/3 years of life expectancy
Following should be added:
Pursuant to Art 104 and 107 RPC: P12,000
Medical and burial expenses: P1,727.95
Attorneys fees: P2,500
o Total of P49, 561.28
o