Modes of Extinguishing Obligations in Civil Law

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23 Questions

What can Juan be held liable for if he fails to deliver after demand?

The penalty

Why can Pedro not ask for the car and the penalty at the same time?

The penalty is subsidiary

How can obligations be extinguished according to Article 1232?

By compensation

What type of obligations does death extinguish?

Purely personal in character

Under what circumstances does a fortuitous event exempt an obligor from liability?

Events that are impossible to foresee or avoid

What are the two general causes that can produce a fortuitous event?

Extraordinary events not foreseeable or avoidable

What is a pure obligation?

An immediately demandable obligation

Which of the following best defines a conditional obligation?

An obligation where consequences are subject to a condition

What characterizes an obligation with a period?

Subject to expiration of a specified period

In an indivisible obligation, why is the object of performance not susceptible to division?

Nature of the object or intent of the parties

What makes an obligation divisible?

Object of the performance is capable of division

Which type of obligation involves consequences that are subject to a condition?

Conditional obligation

Which type of contract can subsist independently from other contracts?


Which type of contract requires not only the consent of the parties but also the delivery of the object by one party to the other for its perfection?


Which type of contract is established as a preliminary step toward the celebration of another subsequent contract?


Which classification of contracts does not require any particular form according to their form?


A contract for the rendition of a service falls under which category according to their purpose?

Rendition of service

What is necessary for an act to constitute a fortuitous event?

It must have force of an imposition that the debtor could not have resisted

In what circumstances does the outbreak of war exempt a party from liability?

When the war involves armed invasion

In case of loss due to theft, why is the debtor considered negligent?

For placing the item within reach of thieves

According to Article 1305, what are the essential elements of a contract?

Consent, object certainty, and cause of the obligation

What does a contract constitute according to Article 1305?

A meeting of minds between two individuals

Why must the offer in a contract be certain according to Article 1305?

To ensure clarity and prevent misinterpretation

Study Notes

Sources of Obligations

  • There are two sources of obligations: law and contracts
  • Obligations arising from quasi-contracts, crimes, and quasi-delicts are imposed by law


  • A contract is a meeting of minds between two persons where one binds themselves to give something or render a service
  • Essential elements of a contract:
    • Consent, manifested by the meeting of minds of the offer and acceptance
    • Object certain, which is the subject matter of the contract
    • Cause of the obligation, which is established


  • Refers to a lawful, voluntary, and unilateral act based on the maxim that no one shall unjustly enrich at the expense of another
  • Forms of Quasi-Contracts:
    • Solutio indebiti – payment by mistake
    • Negotiurum gestio – assuming the management of an abandoned business without the owner's consent


  • Any act or omission that causes damages to another, with fault or negligence, and no preexisting contractual relation between parties
  • Also known as culpa aquiliana

Classification of Obligations

  • Primary classification:
    • Pure and conditional obligations (Art. 1179-1192)
    • Obligations with a period (Art. 1193-1198)
    • Alternative and facultative obligations (Art. 1199-1205)
    • Joint and solidary obligations (Art. 1207-1222)
    • Divisible and indivisible obligations (Art. 1223-1225)
    • Obligations with a penal clause (Art. 1226-1230)
  • Secondary classification:
    • Unilateral and bilateral obligations (Art. 1169-1191)
    • Real and personal obligations (Art. 1163-1168)
    • Civil and natural obligations (Art. 1423)
    • Legal, conventional, and penal obligations (Art. 1157, 1159, 1167)

Classification of Obligations - Primary

  • Pure obligation: not subject to any condition, immediately demandable
  • Conditional obligation: consequence subject to the fulfillment of a condition
  • Obligation with a period: consequence subject to the expiration of a period or term

Classification of Obligations - Primary (continued)

  • Divisible obligation: object of performance susceptible to division
  • Indivisible obligation: object of performance not susceptible to division due to its nature or the intent of the parties

Modes of Extinguishing Obligations

  • Obligations are extinguished by:
    • Payment or performance
    • Loss of the thing due
    • Condonation or remission of the debt
    • Confusion or merger of the rights of the creditor and debtor
    • Compensation
    • Novation
  • Other causes of extinguishment of obligations:
    • Annulment
    • Rescission
    • Fulfillment of a resolutory condition
    • Prescription

Modes of Extinguishing Obligations (continued)

  • Death extinguishes obligations which are purely personal in character
  • Obligations may be extinguished by a fortuitous event or by the will of the parties
  • Fortuitous event: extraordinary events not foreseeable or avoidable, such as natural disasters or human acts

Classification of Contracts

  • According to perfection:
    • Consensual contracts: perfected by the mere agreement of the parties
    • Real contracts: require not only consent but also the delivery of the object
  • According to form:
    • Common contracts: require no particular form
    • Special or formal contracts: require some particular form
  • According to purpose:
    • Transfer of ownership
    • Conveyance of use
    • Rendition of service
  • According to subject matter:
    • Things
    • Services
  • According to the nature of the vinculum which they produce:
    • Unilateral and bilateral obligations

Test your knowledge on how obligations are extinguished in civil law according to Article 1232. Learn about payment, loss of the thing due, condonation, confusion, compensation, and novation.

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