Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Sale; loss of goods sold; who is liable.


“x x x.

Petitioner argues that IMC bears the risk of loss because it expressly reserved ownership of the goods by stipulating in the sales invoices that "[i]t is further agreed that merely for purpose of securing the payment of the purchase price the above described merchandise remains the property of the vendor until the purchase price thereof is fully paid."26

The Court is not persuaded.

The present case clearly falls under paragraph (1), Article 1504 of the Civil Code:

ART. 1504. Unless otherwise agreed, the goods remain at the seller's risk until the ownership therein is transferred to the buyer, but when the ownership therein is transferred to the buyer the goods are at the buyer's risk whether actual delivery has been made or not, except that:

(1) Where delivery of the goods has been made to the buyer or to a bailee for the buyer, in pursuance of the contract and the ownership in the goods has been retained by the seller merely to secure performance by the buyer of his obligations under the contract, the goods are at the buyer's risk from the time of such delivery; (Emphasis supplied)

x x x x

Thus, when the seller retains ownership only to insure that the buyer will pay its debt, the risk of loss is borne by the buyer.27 Accordingly, petitioner bears the risk of loss of the goods delivered.

IMC and LSPI did not lose complete interest over the goods. They have an insurable interest until full payment of the value of the delivered goods. Unlike the civil law concept of res perit domino, where ownership is the basis for consideration of who bears the risk of loss, in property insurance, one's interest is not determined by concept of title, but whether insured has substantial economic interest in the property.28

X x x.”


27 See Lawyers Cooperative Publishing Co. v. Tabora, 121 Phil. 737, 741 (1965).

28 Aetna Ins. Co. v. King, 265 So 2d 716, cited in 43 Am Jur 2d §943.