contains the full text of the
Rules of Civil Procedure
THE 1997 RULES OF
Rules 1 to 71
July 1, 1997, in accordance with the resolution in Bar Matter No. 803
by the Supreme Court in Baguio City on April 8, 1997]
Pursuant to the provisions
of Section 5(5) of Article VIII of the Constitution, the Supreme Court
hereby adopts and promulgates the following rules concerning the
and enforcement of constitutional rights, pleading, practice and
in all courts, the admission to the practice of law, the Integrated
and legal assistance to the underprivileged:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
Section 1. Title of the Rules.cralaw
These Rules shall be
and cited as the Rules of Court.
Sec. 2. In what courts applicable.
These Rules shall
in all the courts, except as otherwise provided by the Supreme Court.
Sec. 3. Cases governed.
These Rules shall
the procedure to be observed in actions, civil or criminal, and special
(a) A civil action is
by which a party sues another for the enforcement or protection of a
or the prevention or redress of a wrong.
A civil action may
be ordinary or special. Both are governed by the rules for ordinary
actions, subject to the specific rules prescribed for a special civil
(b) A criminal action
one by which the State prosecutes a person for an act or omission
(c) A special
is a remedy by which a party seeks to establish a status, a right, or a
Sec. 4. In what cases not applicable.
These Rules shall not
to election cases, land registration, cadastral, naturalization and
proceedings, and other cases not herein provided for, except by analogy
or in a suppletory character and whenever practicable and convenient.
Sec. 5. Commencement of action.
A civil action is
by the filing of the original complaint in court. If an additional
is impleaded in a later pleading, the action is commenced with regard
him on the date of the filing of such later pleading, irrespective of
the motion for its admission, if necessary, is denied by the court.
Sec. 6. Construction.
These Rules shall be
construed in order to promote their objective of securing a just,
and inexpensive disposition of every action and proceeding.
[Rules 2 to 5]
CAUSE OF ACTION
Section 1. Ordinary civil
actions, basis of.cralaw
Every ordinary civil
must be based on a cause of action.
Sec. 2. Cause of action, defined.
A cause of action is
act or omission by which a party violates a right of another.
Sec. 3. One suit for a single
cause of action.
A party may not
more than one suit for a single cause of action.
Sec. 4. Splitting a single cause
of action; effect of.
If two or more suits
instituted on the basis of the same cause of action, the filing of one
or a judgment upon the merits in any one is available as a ground for
dismissal of the others.
Sec. 5. Joinder of causes of
A party may in one
assert, in the alternative or otherwise, as many causes of action as he
may have against an opposing party, subject to the following conditions:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
the causes of action shall comply with the rules on joinder of parties;
(b) The joinder
include special civil actions or actions governed by special rules;
(c) Where the
causes of action
are between the same parties but pertain to different venues or
the joinder may be allowed in the Regional Trial Court provided one of
the causes of action falls within the jurisdiction of said court and
venue lies therein; and cralaw
(d) Where the
claims in all
the causes of action are principally for recovery of money, the
amount claimed shall be the test of jurisdiction.cralaw
Sec. 6. Misjoinder of causes
Misjoinder of causes
action is not a ground for dismissal of an action. A misjoined cause of
action may, on motion of a party or on the initiative of the court, be
severed and proceeded with separately.
PARTIES TO CIVIL
Section 1. Who may be parties;
plaintiff and defendant.cralaw
Only natural or
persons, or entities authorized by law may be parties in a civil
The term "plaintiff" may refer to the claiming party, the
the cross-claimant, or the third (fourth, etc.) party plaintiff. The
"defendant" may refer to the original defending party, the defendant in
a counterclaim, the cross-defendant, or the third (fourth, etc.) party
Sec. 2. Parties in interest.
A real party in
is the party who stands to be benefited or injured by the judgment in
suit, or the party entitled to the avails of the suit. Unless otherwise
authorized by law or these Rules, every action must be prosecuted or
in the name of the real party in interest.
Sec. 3. Representatives as parties.
Where the action is
to be prosecuted or defended by a representative or someone acting in a
fiduciary capacity, the beneficiary shall be included in the title of
case and shall be deemed to be the real party in interest. A
may be a trustee of an express trust, a guardian, an executor or
or a party authorized by law or these Rules. An agent acting in his own
name and for the benefit of an undisclosed principal may sue or be sued
without joining the principal except when the contract involves things
belonging to the principal.
Sec. 4. Spouses as parties.
Husband and wife shall
or be sued jointly, except as provided by law.
Sec. 5. Minor or incompetent
A minor or a person
to be incompetent, may sue or be sued, with the assistance of his
mother, guardian, or if he has none, a guardian ad litem.
Sec. 6. Permissive joinder of
All persons in whom or
whom any right to relief in respect to or arising out of the same
or series of transactions is alleged to exist, whether jointly,
or in the alternative, may, except as otherwise provided in these
join as plaintiffs or be joined as defendants in one complaint, where
question of law or fact common to all such plaintiffs or to all such
may arise in the action; but the court may make such orders as may be
to prevent any plaintiff or defendant from being embarrassed or put to
expense in connection with any proceedings in which he may have no
Sec. 7. Compulsory joinder of
Parties in interest
whom no final determination can be had of an action shall be joined
as plaintiffs or defendants.
Sec. 8. Necessary party.
A necessary party is
who is not indispensable but who ought to be joined as a party if
relief is to be accorded as to those already parties, or for a complete
determination or settlement of the claim subject of the action.
Sec. 9. Non-joinder of necessary
parties to be pleaded.
Whenever in any
in which a claim is asserted a necessary party is not joined, the
shall set forth his name, if known, and shall state why he is omitted.
Should the court find the reason for the omission unmeritorious, it may
order the inclusion of the omitted necessary party if jurisdiction over
his person may be obtained.
The failure to comply
the order for his inclusion, without justifiable cause, shall be deemed
a waiver of the claim against such party.
of a necessary
party does not prevent the court from proceeding in the action, and the
judgment rendered therein shall be without prejudice to the rights of
Sec. 10. Unwilling co-plaintiff.
If the consent of any
who should be joined as plaintiff can not be obtained, he may be made a
defendant and the reason therefor shall be stated in the complaint.
Sec. 11. Misjoinder and non-joinder
Neither misjoinder nor
of parties is ground for dismissal of an action. Parties may be dropped
or added by order of the court on motion of any party or on its own
at any stage of the action and on such terms as are just. Any claim
a misjoined party may be severed and proceeded with separately.
Sec. 12. Class suit.
When the subject
of the controversy is one of common or general interest to many persons
so numerous that it is impracticable to join all as parties, a number
them which the court finds to be sufficiently numerous and
as to fully protect the interests of all concerned may sue or defend
the benefit of all. Any party in interest shall have the right to
to protect his individual interest.
Sec. 13. Alternative defendants.
Where the plaintiff is
against who of several persons he is entitled to relief, he may join
or all of them as defendants in the alternative, although a right to
against one may be inconsistent with a right of relief against the
Sec. 14. Unknown identity or
name of defendant.
Whenever the identity
name of a defendant is unknown, he may be sued as the unknown owner,
devisee, or by such other designation as the case may require; when his
identity or true name is discovered, the pleading must be amended
Sec. 15. Entity without juridical
personality as defendant.
When two or more
not organized as an entity with juridical personality enter into a
they may be sued under the name by which they are generally or commonly
In the answer of
the names and addresses of the persons composing said entity must all
Sec. 16. Death of party; duty
Whenever a party to a
action dies, and the claim is not thereby extinguished, it shall be the
duty of his counsel to inform the court within thirty (30) days after
death of the fact thereof, and to give the name and address of his
representative or representatives. Failure of counsel to comply with
duty shall be a ground for disciplinary action.
The heirs of the
may be allowed to be substituted for the deceased, without requiring
appointment of an executor or administrator and the court may appoint a
guardian ad litem for the minor heirs.
The court shall
order said legal representative or representatives to appear and be
within a period of thirty (30) days from notice.cralaw
If no legal
is named by the counsel for the deceased party, or if the one so named
shall fail to appear within the specified period, the court may order
opposing party, within a specified time, to procure the appointment of
an executor or administrator for the estate of the deceased and the
shall immediately appear for and on behalf of the deceased. The court
in procuring such appointment, if defrayed by the opposing party, may
recovered as costs.cralaw
Sec. 17. Death or separation
of a party who is a public officer.
When a public officer
a party in an action in his official capacity and during its pendency
resigns, or otherwise ceases to hold office, the action may be
and maintained by or against his successor if, within thirty (30) days
after the successor takes office or such time as may be granted by the
court, it is satisfactorily shown to the court by any party that there
is a substantial need for continuing or maintaining it and that the
adopts or continues or threatens to adopt or continue the action of his
predecessor. Before a substitution is made, the party or officer to be
affected, unless expressly assenting thereto, shall be given reasonable
notice of the application therefor and accorded an opportunity to be
Sec. 18. Incompetency or incapacity.
If a party becomes
or incapacitated, the court, upon motion with notice, may allow the
to be continued by or against the incompetent or incapacitated person
by his legal guardian or guardian ad litem.
Sec. 19. Transfer of interest.
In case of any
of interest, the action may be continued by or against the original
unless the court upon motion directs the person to whom the interest is
transferred to be substituted in the action or joined with the original
Sec. 20. Action on contractual
When the action is for
of money arising from contract, express or implied, and the defendant
before entry of final judgment in the court in which the action was
at the time of such death, it shall not be dismissed but shall instead
be allowed to continue until entry of final judgment. A favorable
obtained by the plaintiff therein shall be enforced in the manner
provided in these Rules for prosecuting claims against the estate of a
Sec. 21. Indigent party.
A party may be
to litigate his action, claim or defense as an indigent if the court,
an ex parte application and hearing, is satisfied that the party is one
who has no money or property sufficient and available for food, shelter
and basic necessities for himself and his family.
an exemption from payment of docket and other lawful fees, and of
of stenographic notes which the court may order to be furnished him.
amount of the docket and other lawful fees which the indigent was
from paying shall be a lien on any judgment rendered in the case
to the indigent, unless the court otherwise provides.cralaw
Any adverse party
the grant of such authority at any time before judgment is rendered by
the trial court. If the court should determine after hearing that the
declared as an indigent is in fact a person with sufficient income or
the proper docket and other lawful fees shall be assessed and collected
by the clerk of court. If payment is not made within the time fixed by
the court, execution shall issue for the payment thereof, without
to such other sanctions as the court may impose.cralaw
Sec. 22. Notice to the Solicitor
In any action
the validity of any treaty, law, ordinance, executive order,
decree, rules or regulations, the court, in its discretion, may require
the appearance of the Solicitor General who may be heard in person or
a representative duly designated by him.
Section 1. Venue of real
to or possession of real property, or interest therein, shall be
and tried in the proper court which has jurisdiction over the area
the real property involved, or a portion thereof, is situated.
Forcible entry and
actions shall be commenced and tried in the municipal trial court of
municipality or city wherein the real property involved, or a portion
Sec. 2. Venue of personal actions.
All other actions may
commenced and tried where the plaintiff or any of the principal
resides, or where the defendant or any of the principal defendants
or in the case of a non-resident defendant where he may be found, at
election of the plaintiff.
Sec. 3. Venue of actions against
If any of the
does not reside and is not found in the Philippines, and the action
the personal status of the plaintiff, or any property of said defendant
located in the Philippines, the action may be commenced and tried in
court of the place where the plaintiff resides, or where the property
any portion thereof is situated or found.
Sec. 4. When Rule not applicable.
Section 1. Uniform procedure.cralaw
The procedure in the
Trial Courts shall be the same as in the Regional Trial Courts, except
(a) where a particular provision expressly or impliedly applies only to
either of said courts, or (b) in civil cases governed by the Rule on
Sec. 2. Meaning of terms.
The term "Municipal
Courts" as used in these Rules shall include Metropolitan Trial
Municipal Trial Courts in Cities, Municipal Trial Courts, and Municipal
Circuit Trial Courts.
to Main Index