Coquia v. Fieldmen’s Insurance Co.

G.R. No. L-23276, 29 November 1968

FACTS:

The Fieldmen’s Company (company) issued a common carrier accident insurance policy to Manila Yellow Taxicab Co. Inc. (insured). In the policy it stipulated that accident arising from a motor vehicle shall be insured with respect to the death or bodily injured driver, conductor and/or inspector riding in the motor vehicle.

Carlito Coquia met an accident while driving resulting in his death. The insured asked the company for the insurance of Carlito. The company refused to give insurance to the said insured, the paaboutts of Carlito filed a complaint about a sum of money for the insurance of their dead child. The company contends that parents had no contractual relation with the company, thus they are not the proper parties in the said case.

ISSUE:

Whether or not the policy in question belong to such class of contracts pour autrui.

RULING:

Yes.Pursuant to these stipulations, the Company “will indemnify any authorized Driver who is driving the Motor Vehicle” of the Insured and, in the event of death of said driver, the Company shall, likewise, “indemnify his personal representatives.” In fact, the Company “may, at its option, make indemnity payable directly to the claimants or heirs of claimants … it being the true intention of this Policy to protect … the liabilities of the Insured towards the passengers of the Motor Vehicle and the Public” — in other words, third parties.

Thus, the policy under consideration is typical of contracts pour autrui, this character being made more manifest by the fact that the deceased driver paid fifty per cent (50%) of the corresponding premiums, which were deducted from his weekly commissions. Under these conditions, it is clear that the Coquias — who, admittedly, are the sole heirs of the deceased — have a direct cause of action against the Company, and, since they could have maintained this action by themselves, without the assistance of the Insured, it goes without saying that they could and did properly join the latter in filing the complaint herein.

 * Case digest by  Aileen B. Buenafe, LLB-1, Andres Bonifacio Law School, SY 2017-2018

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