Shortage of payment of the docketing fee cannot be used as a ground for dismissal

As to the shortage of payment of the docketing fee,  the same cannot be used as a ground for dismissing the petition. In Sun Insurance Office, Ltd. v. Asuncion, the Court held that the strict regulations set in Manchester Development Corporation v. Court of Appeals that a court acquires jurisdiction over any case only upon payment of the prescribed docket fees does not apply where the party does not deliberately intend to defraud the court in payment of docket fees, and manifests its willingness to abide by the rules by paying additional docket fees when required by the court. The liberal doctrine in Sun Insurance has been repeatedly reiterated in Heirs of Bertuldo Hinog v. Melicor, Proton Pilipinas Corporation v. Banque Nationale de Paris and Intercontinental Broadcasting Corporation v. Alonzo-Legasto, and continues to be the controlling doctrine.  Since the deficiency in payment was not at all intentional, as there was a willingness to comply with the rules when Spouses Gutierrez remitted the deficiency by postal money order in their Motion for Reconsideration, the Sun Insurance doctrine applies.

It cannot be gainsaid that the emerging trend in the rulings of this Court is to afford every party litigant the amplest opportunity for the proper and just determination of his cause, free from the constraints of technicalities. Technicality and procedural imperfection should thus not serve as basis of decisions. As has often been stated, it is far better to dispose of a case on the merits which is a primordial end rather than on a technicality, if it be the case, that may result in injustice.


About Erineus

Born on December 28, 1965, Surallah, South Cotabato, Southern Mindanao, Philippines.
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