ALBANO VS. GAPUSANFACTS:
In 1941 or five years before his appointment to the bench,respondent Gapusan notarized a document for the personal separationof the spouses Valentina Andres and Guillermo Maligta of Barrio 6,Vintar, Ilocos Norte and for the extrajudicial liquidation of theirconjugal partnership.It was stipulated in that document that if either spouse shouldcommit adultery or concubinage, as the case may be, then the othershould refrain from filing an action against the other. Judge Gapusan denied that he drafted the agreement. Heexplained that the spouses had been separated for a long time whenthey signed the separation agreement and that the wife had begottenchildren with her paramour. He said that there was a stipulation in theagreement that the spouses would live together in case of reconciliation. His belief was that the separation agreement forestalledthe occurrence of violent incidents between the spouses.Albano in filing the malpractice charge is in effect asking thisCourt to take belated disciplinary action against Judge Gapusan as amember of the bar or as a notary. (He was admitted to the bar in1937).
Whether or not Judge Gapusan should be censured because of notarizing the void agreement between the spouses Albano.
There is no question that the covenents contained in the saidseparation agreement are contrary to law, morals and good customs(Biton vs. Momongan, 62 Phil. 7). Those stipulations undermine theinstitutions of marriage and the family, "Marriage is not a merecontract but an inviolable social institution". "The family is a basicsocial institution which public policy cherishes and protects." (Arts. 52and 216, Civil Code). Marriage and the family are the bases of humansociety throughout the civilized world (Adong vs. Cheong Seng Gee, 43Phil. 43; Ramirez vs. Gmur, 42 Phil. 855, 864; Goitia vs. Campos Rueda,35 Phil. 252, 254; Brown vs. Yambao, 102 Phil. 168). To preserve the institutions of marriage and the family, the lawconsiders as void "any contract for personal separation betweenhusband and wife" and "every extrajudicial agreement, during the