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Digest: Sime Darby Pilipinas, Inc. v. Goodyear Philippines, Inc. (651 SCRA 551, 2011)

Questions Open to Review - Questions of Fact

Digest: Sime Darby Pilipinas, Inc. v. Goodyear Philippines, Inc. (651 SCRA 551, 2011) 

G.R. No. 182148 : June 08, 2011


Facts: Sime Darby leased a billboard owned by Macgraphics for a term of four years.

Subsequently, Sime Darby executed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Goodyear, whereby it agreed to sell its tire manufacturing plants and other assets to the latter and thereafter executed a “Deed of Assignment” (the deed) through which Sime Darby assigned, among others, its leasehold rights and deposits made to Macgraphics pursuant to its lease contract over the said billboard.

Goodyear stated that it intended to honor the P120,000.00 monthly rental rate given by Macgraphics to Sime Darby.

Macgraphics said that it could not give its consent to the assignment of lease to Goodyear.

Macgraphics advised Goodyear that any advertising service it intended to get from them would have to wait until after the expiration or valid pre-termination of the lease then existing with Sime Darby.

Due to Macgraphics’ refusal to honor the deed, Goodyear, demanded partial rescission of the deed and the refund of P1,239,000.00, the pro-rata value of Sime Darby’s leasehold rights over the billboard.

As Sime Darby refused to accede to Goodyear’s demand for partial rescission, the latter commenced a case with the RTC.

The RTC rendered its decision declaring the Deed of Assignment of Receivables partially rescinded and directed defendant Sime Darby to pay Goodyear the amount of P1,239,000.00 with legal interest thereon.


On the other hand, both Goodyear and Macgraphics pray for the affirmance of the decisions of the courts below that rescission is proper.  In addition, Goodyear assails the petition of Sime Darby claiming that it raises only questions of fact since the petition essentially revolves around the truth or falsity of the findings of the courts below that Macgraphics never consented to the assignment of Sime Darby's leasehold rights. Goodyear also insists that it is entitled to attorneys' fees due to the unjustified refusal of Sime Darby to rescind the Deed of Assignment.

Issue: Whether or not the controversy is a question of facts.

Ruling: Yes. Well-settled is the rule that a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court should only include questions of law since     questions of fact are not reviewable. A question of law arises when there is doubt as to what the law is on a certain state of facts, while a question of fact exists when the doubt arises as to the truth or falsity of the alleged facts. For a question to be one of law, it must not involve an examination of the probative value of the evidence presented by any of the litigants. The resolution of the issue must rest solely on what the law provides under a given set of circumstances. Once it is clear that the issue invites a review of the evidence presented, then the question posed is one of fact. Thus, the test of whether a question is one of law or of fact is not the appellation given to such question by the party raising the same; rather, it is whether the appellate court resolve the question raised without reviewing or evaluating the evidence, in which case, it is a question of law; otherwise it is a question of fact. [22]

Likewise well-settled is the principle that absent grave abuse of discretion, the Court will not disturb the factual findings of the CA.  The Court will only exercise its power of review in known exceptions such as gross misappreciation of evidence or a total void of evidence. [23]

Whether Macgraphics gave its consent to the assignment of leasehold rights of Sime Darby is a question of fact. It is not reviewable. On this score alone, the petition of Sime Darby fails.

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