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Insurance Case Digest: Ty v. First National Surety and Assurance Co., Inc. (1961)

G.R. No. L-16138             April 29, 1961
Lessons Applicable: Clear Provision Given Ordinary Meaning (Insurance)

  • 2 months prior to December 24, 1953: Diosdado C. Ty, employed as operator mechanic foreman in the Broadway Cotton Factory insured himself in 18 local insurance companies with Broadway Cotton Factory as his beneficiary
  • December 24, 1953: fire broke out at the Broadway Cotton Factory where Ty, fighting his way out, injured his left hand by a heavy object.  
  • He was brought to the Manila Central University hospital, and after receiving first aid there, he went to the National Orthopedic Hospital for treatment of his injuries.
  • His injuries caused temporary total disability on his left hand so he filed a claim against all defendants who rejected the claim reasoning that there it was not covered in his policy because there was no severance of amputation of the left hand
  • Trial Court: absolved the defendants
ISSUE: W/N Ty can claim 

HELD: NO. Affirmed.
  • can not go beyond the clear and express conditions of the insurance policies, all of which define partial disability as loss of either hand by amputation through the bones of the wrist
  • Note that the disability of plaintiff's hand was merely temporary, having been caused by fracture of the index, the middle and the fourth fingers of the left hand
  • agreement contained in the insurance policies is the law between the parties