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G.R. No.

72494 August 11, 1989

APPELLATE COURT, respondents.
Eastern Book & Supply Service, incorporated in Singapore, was
granted by HSBC Singapore an overdraft facility. Private respondents,
directors of Eastern Book executed a Joint and Several Guarantee in favor of
HSBC which provided for that the guarantee and all rights, obligations and
liabilities arising thereat shall be construed and determined under and may
be enforced in accordance with the laws of the Republic of Singaporeand
that the Courts of Singapore shall have jurisdiction over all disputes arising
under such guarantee. Eastern Book defaulted. Hence, HSBC filed a suit for
collection against them before the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City.
Sherman filed a Motion to Dismiss on the ground of lack of jurisdiction over
the complaint and persons of the defendants.
Whether or not Philippine courts have jurisdiction over the suit.
Yes. A stipulation as to venue does not preclude the filing of suits in the
residence of plaintiff or defendant under Sec 2 (b), Rule 4 of the Rules of
Court, in the absence of qualifying or restrictive words in the agreement
which indicate that the place named is the only venue agreed upon by the
parties. The parties did not thereby stipulate that only the courts
of Singapore, to the exclusion of all the rest, have jurisdiction. Neither did the
clause in question operate to divest Philippine courts of jurisdiction.
In International Law, jurisdiction is often defined as the right of a state
to exercise authority over persons and things within its boundaries subject to
certain exceptions. This authority, which finds its source in the concept
of sovereignty, is exclusive within and throughout the domain of the state. A
state is competent to take hold of any judicial matter it sees fit by making its
courts and agencies assume jurisdiction over all kinds of cases brought
before them.

[G.R. Nos. 121576-78. June 16, 2000]

ARSENIO M. GONONG, and CESAR S. URBINO, SR., respondents.
In 1989, Cesar Urbino, Sr. sued Poro Point Shipping Services for
damages the former incurred when one of the latters ship ran aground
causing losses to Urbino. Urbino impleaded Banco Do Brasil (BDB), a foreign
corporation not engaged in business in the Philippines nor does it have any
office here or any agent. BDB was impleaded simply because it has a claim
over the sunken ship. BDB however failed to appear multiple times.
Eventually, a judgment was rendered and BDB was adjudged to pay
$300,000.00 in damages in favor of Urbino for BDB being a nuisance
BDB assailed the said decision as it argued that there was no valid service of
summons because the summons was issued to the ambassador of Brazil.
Further, the other summons which were made through publication is not
applicable to BDB as it alleged that the action against them is in personam.
Whether or not the court acquired jurisdiction over Banco Do Brasil.
No. Banco Do Brasil is correct. Although the suit is originally in rem as it was
BDBs claim on the sunken ship which was used as the basis for it being
impleaded, the action nevertheless became an in personam one when Urbino
asked for damages in the said amount. As such, only a personal service of
summons would have vested the court jurisdiction over BDB. Where the
action is in personam, one brought against a person on the basis of his
personal liability, jurisdiction over the person of the defendant is necessary
for the court to validly try and decide the case. When the defendant is a nonresident, personal service of summons within the state is essential to the
acquisition of jurisdiction over the person. This cannot be done, however, if
the defendant is not physically present in the country, and thus, the court
cannot acquire jurisdiction over his person and therefore cannot validly try
and decide the case against him.


G.R. No. 149177. November 23, 2007
Petitioner is a Japanese consultancy firm which entered into an Independent
Contractor Agreement with Kitamura, a Japanese national permanently
residing in the Philippines. Kitamura was to extend professional service for 1
year starting April 1999.
On February 2000, Kitamura was informed that Nippon no longer intends to
automatically renew the agreement. The former then filed a case for specific
performance and damages.
Whether or not Philippine courts have jurisdiction over the instant case.
Yes. In resolving the case, the SC elucidated that in the resolution of
conflicts problems, there are 3 phases:
1. Jurisdiction- where to litigate
2. Choice of law- which law to apply
3. Recognition and enforcement of decision- where the decision may be
Athough petitioners claim that the court has no jurisdiction in view of the
principles of:
Lex Loci Celebrationis- law of the place where contract was executed is
Lex COntractus- law of the place where the contract is performed is applied
State of the most significant relationship- law of the state which has the most
substantial connection to the case and the parties is applied;
The SC pointed out that the invocation of the above rules is unsound as
they pertain not to the question of jurisdiction by to the 2nd phase, the choice
of law. Jurisdiction, the question being raised, choice of law rules therefore
are inapplicable.
Choice of law is also prematurely raised in the case since before it is
raised, there should 1st exist a conflict of laws situation. In the instant case,
such was not met since the law of any foreign country was not pleaded and
proved by the petitioners.
Forum non conveniens is also not applicable since:
1. Such is not a ground for a motion to dismiss under the Rules of Court

2. Said doctrine depends on the facts of the case and on the sound
discretion of the court and in this case the RTC decided to assume
3. Such doctrine requires a factual determination, hence, such is a matter
of defense.