GR No. 4437 – September 9, 1909


Petitioner – defendant (Rama) obtained a series of loans from respondent – plaintiff (Osmena), with which petitioner pledged her sugar harvest, present and future properties including her house. Sometime after the execution and delivery of the loans, respondent died. Plaintiff was succeeded by his heir who filed a case and presented evidence of an acknowledgment by defendant of the loan stating that the same shall be paid “when her house is sold”. Petitioner answered by setting up the defense of prescription. The lower court ruled in favor of the respondent. Hence the petition.


Whether or not the loan obligation had prescribed.


No. The loans did not prescribe.

Article 1182 of the Civil Code provides that: “When the fulfillment of the condition depends upon the sole will of the debtor, the conditional obligation shall be void. If it depends upon chance or upon the will of a third person, the obligation shall take effect in conformity with the provisions of this Code.”

The condition presented by the petitioner in the acknowledgement is a void condition being dependent on the sole will (potestative) of the same. The court ruled that since the said condition is found on the acknowledgment and not on the original obligation, only the said condition is void and the acknowledgment thus becomes an absolute recognition of the loans contracted. There already being prior acknowledgment, the debt is considered to have not prescribed. Petition is dismissed and lower court’s decision is affirmed.

 * Case digest by Ariel Acopiado, LLB-1, Andres Bonifacio Law School, SY 2017-2018