Q. When does an action deemed commenced?
A. An action is deemed commenced upon the filing of the complaint. This is the provision of the old rule. But this old rule that an action is deemed commenced as of the date the complaint is filed has been amended to include a provision which envisions a case when the action is already filed and is amended to include an additional defendant.
The case was filed Dec.2, 1997 by A against B only. Under this rule, the action is deemed commenced on Dec. 2, 1997 in so far as only A and B are concerned. On . Dec 3,1997 A filed an amended complaint including now C.
Q. When is this action deemed commenced?
A. Insofar as A and B are concerned, the action is deemed commenced on Dec. 2, 1997. But insofar as it concerns A and C, the action is deemed commenced on Dec. 3, 1997 (as to C).
Q. Why do we distinguish the date of commencement of an action in this situation where the is an additional defendant? A. Because we have the law on prescription.
At the time the case was filed on Dec. 1, 1997, the action against B may not yet have prescribed. But when the complaint was amended on Dec. 3, 1997, the action of A against B and C may have already prescribed. That is why it is necessary to consider the situation like this when the action is being commenced with respect to an additional defendant.
1) An action is commenced by the filing of the complaint and the payment of the requisite docket fees within the prescriptive period, this notwithstanding that summons was served on the defendant after the prescriptive period. 2) An action can be commenced by filing the complaint by registered mail. It is the date of the mailing that is considered as the date of filing, and not the date of the receipt thereof by the clerk of court. 3) The amount of damages in the body of prayer of the pleading must enable the clerk of court to compute the docket fees required. 4) The court may allow the payment of the deficient docket fee within a reasonable period but not beyond the applicable prescriptive period.
With respect to actions, we have retained the provisions of the old code. With respect to some subject matter under the old rule, a party plaintiff can file only one complaint based on one single cause of action. He cannot split its cause of action. And when he splits his cause of action, the subsequent actions maybe the subject of a motion to dismiss. This rule has been retained in the New Rules in Civil Procedure.
Example: (Splitting of causes of action which have been retained) Note: Same parties
A is a resident of Sulu, B is of Batanes. There is a piece of land located in Sorsogon. The causes of action of A against B are as follows: 1) sum of money involving P200,000.00
2) reindivicacion over the lot valued at P50,000.00
Q. Can A file a complaint against B joining in one complaint the action for sum of money and the action for reinvidicacion (if it can, with what court and place)? A.
Let us vary the facts, the claim for money is P201,000.00. The value of the property is P19,000.00
Q. Can A file only one complaint incorporating therein the sum of money of P201,000.00 and reindivicacion of lot valued at P19,000.00?
A. Sec. 5 Rule 2(rules on joinder of causes of action )
A party may in one pleading assert, in the alternatives or otherwise, as many causes of action as he may have against an opposing party, subject to the following conditions:
a. the party joining the causes of action shall comply with the rules on joinder of parties; b. the joinder shall not include special civil action or actions governed by special rules; c. where the causes of action are between the same parties but pertain to different venue of jurisdictions, the joinder may be allowed in the RTC provided one of the cases of action falls within the...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document