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Succession Digests Part 1

Succession Digests Part 1

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Published by cmv mendoza
some are from the professors themselves. I do not claim any rights on the reviewers/handouts/presentation here. Just sharing for people who would want to learn more about the subject minus the confusing legalese words. Learning should be made easier for people.
some are from the professors themselves. I do not claim any rights on the reviewers/handouts/presentation here. Just sharing for people who would want to learn more about the subject minus the confusing legalese words. Learning should be made easier for people.

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SUCCESSION A2010
page 1
NERI v AKUTIN
74 PHIL 185MORAN; May 21, 1943
NATURE
Petition for review on certiorari
FACTS
- Testator Neri indicated in his will that he was leaving all of his properties byuniversal title to his children by his second marriage with preterition of his children byhis first marriage.- Eleuterio, Agripino, Agapita, Getulia, Rosario and Celerina are all Neri’s children byhis first marriage.- The trial court annulled the institution of the heirs and declared total intestacy.- The children by the second marriage filed a motion for reconsideration on thegrounds that:1) there is no preterition as to the children of the first marriage have received theirshares in the property left by the testator2) assuming that there has been a preterition, the effect would not be the annulmentof the institution of heirs but simply the reduction of the bequest made to them.- The children by the second marriage anchor their argument on the concept of “heir”whose A814 definition is deemed repealed by that of the Code of Civil Procedure. It ismaintained that the word "heredero" under the Civil Code, is not synonymous with theterm "heir" under the Code of Civil Procedure, and that the "heir" under the latterCode is no longer personally liable for the debts of the deceased as was the"heredero" under the Civil Code
ISSUES
1. WON there is preterition2. WON there should be annulment of the institution of the heirs and open the estateto total intestacy
HELD
1. YES, there is preterition- According to the court’s findings, none of the children by the first marriage receivedtheir respective shares from the testator’s property- Even if clause 8 of the will is invoked (said clause states that the children by his firstmarriage had already received their shares in his property excluding what he hadgiven them as aid during their financial troubles and the money they had borrowedfrom him) the Court can rely only on the findings of the trial court that the inventoryindicates that the property of Neri has remained intact and that no portion has beengiven to the children of the first marriage.- Neri left his property by universal title to the children by his second marriage and didnot expressly disinherit his children by his first marriage but did not leave anything tothem. This fits the case of preterition according to A814, CC which provides that theinstitution of heirs shall be annulled and intestate succession should be declaredopen.2. YES- The word "heir" as used in A814 of the Civil Code may not have the meaning that ithas under the Code of Civil Procedure, but this does prevent a bequest from beingmade by universal title as is in substance the subject-matter of A814 of the Civil Code.- It may also be true that heirs under the Code of Civil Procedure may receive thebequest only after payment of debts left by the deceased and not before as under theCivil Code, but this may have a bearing only upon the question as to when successionbecomes effective and can in no way destroy the fact that succession may still be byuniversal or special title.- Since a bequest may still be made by universal title and with preterition of forcedheirs, its nullity as provided in article 814 still applies there being nothing inconsistentwith it in the Code of Civil Procedure. The basis for its nullity is the nature and effectof the bequest and not its possible name under the Code of Civil Procedure.- In addition, Secs. 755 and 756 of the Code of Civil Procedure affected A814 and A851of the Civil Code. But these sections have been expressly repealed by Act No. 2141,thus restoring force to A814 and A851.
OZAETA [concur]
- Whether or not there was preterition of the testator's surviving children by his firstmarriage, may not be entirely beyond dispute, because it is not altogether improbablethat, before the testator made his will said children of his had received cash advancesfrom him. But, to my mind, there can be no doubt that there was preterition of thetestator's grandchildren by his daughter Getulia, who died long before the testatormade his will. These lineal descendants of the testator, who are also forced heirs of his, were completely ignored and omitted in the will.- In the absence of proof it cannot be presumed that the testator made thedeclarations in bad faith - that he made them knowing that it was not true that he hadgiven each of his surviving children by his first wife at least an equal if not a greatershare in his inheritance than what he left to each of his children by his second wife.- But if he had made those declarations in bad faith or as a subterfuge to deprive hischildren and grandchildren by his first marriage of their legal share in his inheritance,he could only have done so with the intention to frustrate their right. In that case thepreterition would only assume a different form, voluntary instead of involuntary. Butthe result would be the same.
BOCOBO [dissent]
- There is no preterition because the findings of both the Court of First Instance and of the Court of Appeals show that all the children of the first marriage have received, inproperty and in cash, a part of their short legitime. One of the requisites of preteritionis that one or some of the heirs of the direct line be totally deprived of their legitime.- The children of the first marriage not having been entirely forgotten, the will shouldbe respected and carried out, but the children of the first marriage should have theirrespective shares in the strict legitime completed after taking into account theamounts already received by them from their father.- But granting that there was a preterition because one or some of the children of thefirst marriage never received, by donation inter vivos or by will, anything from theirfather, it is clear from the will in question that the children of the second marriage areentitled to the third for free disposal and to the third for mejora (in addition to theirshare in the strict legitime.- "Anulará la institución de heredero" does not mean that the whole will is of no effect.It merely nullifies the clause designating the children of the second marriage. As theonly "herederos" or continuers of the testator's personality and in the place of suchclause, article 814 orders that all the children, of both marriages, shall be suchcontinuers of Neri's personality. This does not mean that all the children shall dividethe whole estate equally, by the rules of intestacy. It simply signifies that the childrenof both marriages become continuers of Neri's personality, and as such liablepersonally for all of Neri's obligations, so that, under the system of the Spanish CivilCode, which distinguishes "herederos" from "legatarios," all the children are liablepersonally for the debts of their father, even beyond and in excess of the propertyreceived by each of them.
 
SUCCESSION A2010
page 2
ALVAREZ v IAC (YANES)
185 SCRA 8FERNAN; May 7, 1990
NATURE
Petition for review on
certiorari
FACTS
- Two parcels of land were registered in the names of the heirs of Aniceto Yanes,under an Original Certificate of Title.- Fortunato D. Santiago was issued a Transfer Certificate of Title. Santiago then soldthe lots to Monico B. Fuentebella, Jr. The lots were sold thereafter Rosendo Alvarez.- The Yaneses filed a complaint against Santiago, Arsenia Vda. de Fuentebella, Alvarezand the Register of Deeds of Negros Occidental for the "return" of the ownership andpossession of the lots, and prayed for an accounting of the produce of the land from1944 up to the filing of the complaint, and that the share or money equivalent due theheirs be delivered to them, and damages.- During the pendency of the case, Alvarez sold the lots to Dr. Rodolfo Siason.
-
 The CFI ordered Alvarez to reconvey and deliver the possession of the lots to the Yaneses. However, execution of said decision proved unsuccessful with respect to oneof the lots, as it had been subdivided into two and that that they were "in the name"of Rodolfo Siason who had purchased them from Alvarez, and that the lot could not bedelivered to the plaintiffs as Siason was "not a party per writ of execution."- The Yaneses filed a petition for the issuance of a new certificate of title and for adeclaration of nullity of the TCTs issued to Rosendo Alvarez.
T
he court requiredRodolfo Siason to produce the certificates of title covering the lots, which order waslater nullified by the court in view of a manifestation filed by Siason.- the lower court found Siason as a buyer in good faith, and ordered the heirs of Alvarez to pay the Yaneses the actual value of the lots, plus damages. The IACaffirmed except as to damages.- Petitioners contend, among others, that the liability arising from the sale of the lotsmade by Rosendo Alvarez to Dr. Rodolfo Siason should be the sole liability of the lateRosendo Alvarez or of his estate, after his death.
ISSUE
WON the liability arising from the sale of the lots made by Rosendo Alvarez to Dr.Rodolfo Siason should be the sole liability of the late Rosendo Alvarez or of his estate,after his death.
HELDNO.
- It overlooks the doctrine obtaining in this jurisdiction on the general transmissibilityof the rights and obligations of the deceased to his legitimate children and heirs.Under our law, the general rule is that a party's contractual rights and obligations aretransmissible to the successors.- The pertinent provisions of the Civil Code state:
Art. 774.
Succession is a mode of acquisition by virtue of which the property, rightsand obligations to the extent of the value of the inheritance, of a person aretransmitted through his death to another or others either by his will or by operation of law.
Art. 776.
 The inheritance includes all the property, rights and obligations of a personwhich are not extinguished by his death.
Art. 1311
. Contract stake effect only between the parties, their assigns and heirsexcept in case where the rights and obligations arising from the contract are nottransmissible by their nature, or by stipulation or by provision of law. The heir is notliable beyond the value of the property received from the decedent.
- Estate of Hemady vs. Luzon Surety Co., Inc.:
 The binding effect of contracts upon theheirs of the deceased party is not altered by the provision of our Rules of Court thatmoney debts of a deceased must be liquidated and paid from his estate before theresidue is distributed among said heirs (Rule 89). The reason is that whateverpayment is thus made from the state is ultimately a payment by the heirs ordistributees, since the amount of the paid claim in fact diminishes or reduces theshares that the heirs would have been entitled to receive.- The general rule (above) is a consequence of the progressive "depersonalization" of patrimonial rights and duties that, as observed by Victorio Polacco, “has characterizedthe history of these institutions. From the Roman concept of a relation from person toperson, the obligation has evolved into a relation from patrimony to patrimony withthe persons occupying only a representative position, barring those rare cases wherethe obligation is strictly personal,
i
.
e
., is contracted
intuitu personae
, in considerationof its performance by a specific person and by no other.”- Petitioners being the heirs of the late Rosendo Alvarez, they cannot escape the legalconsequences of their father's transaction, which gave rise to the present claim fordamages. That petitioners did not inherit the property involved is of no momentbecause by legal fiction, the monetary equivalent thereof devolved into the mass of their father's hereditary estate, and hereditary assets are always liable in theirtotality for the payment of the debts of the estate.It must, however, be made clearthat petitioners are liable only to the extent of the value of their inheritance.
VITUG v CA (ROWENA FAUSTINO-CORONA)
183 SCRA 755SARMIENTO; March 29, 1990
NATURE
 This case is a chapter in an earlier suit involving the probate of the two wills of thelate Dolores Luchangco Vitug naming private respondent Rowena Faustino-Coronaexecutrix. In that case, the appointment of Nenita Alonte as co-special administratorof Mrs. Vitug's estate with her (Mrs. Vitug's) widower, petitioner Romarico G. Vitug,pending probate was upheld.
FACTS
- Jan.13, 1985, Romarico G. Vitug filed a motion asking for authority from the probatecourt to sell certain shares of stock and real properties belonging to the estate tocover allegedly his advances to the estate in the sum of P667,731.66, plus interests,which he claimed were personal funds (as found by CA, the alleged advancesconsisted of P58,147.40 estate tax, P518,834.27 deficiency estate tax, andP90,749.99 as increment thereto).- April 12, 1985, Rowena Corona opposed the motion to sell on the ground that thesame funds withdrawn from one of the savings account were conjugal partnershipproperties and part of the estate, and hence, there was allegedly no ground forreimbursement. She also sought his ouster for failure to include the sums in questionfor inventory and for "concealment of funds belonging to the estate."- Vitug insists that the said funds are his exclusive property having acquired the samethrough a survivorship agreement executed with his late wife and the bank on June19, 1970, where it was stipulated that all the money that will be deposited by either of them (Romarico and Dolores) in their joint savings current account shall be their
 
SUCCESSION A2010
page 3
property, and after the death of either of them shall belong to and be the soleproperty of the survivor.- The trial courts upheld the validity of this agreement and granted "the motion to sellsome of the estate of Dolores, the proceeds of which shall be used to pay the personalfunds of Romarico Vitug in the total sum of P667,731.66 ... ."- On the other hand, the CA, in the petition for certiorari filed by Rowena, held that theabove-quoted survivorship agreement constitutes a conveyance mortis causa which"did not comply with the formalities of a valid will as prescribed by Article 805 of theCivil Code," and secondly, assuming that it is a mere donation inter vivos, it is aprohibited donation under the provisions of Article 133 of the Civil Code, setting asidethe order granting Romarico’s motion to sell properties of Dolores for reimbursementof his alleged advances to the estate.- Romarico assails CA’s ruling on the strength of Rivera v. People's Bank and Trust Co.and Macam v. Gatmaitan sustaining the validity of "survivorship agreements" andconsidering them as aleatory contracts.
ISSUE
WON the survivorship agreement constitutes a conveyance mortis causa.
HELD
NO.- The conveyance in question is not, first of all, one of mortis causa, which should beembodied in a will. A will has been defined as "a personal, solemn, revocable and freeact by which a capacitated person disposes of his property and rights and declares orcomplies with duties to take effect after his death." In other words, the bequest ordevice must pertain to the testator. In this case, the monies subject of the savingsaccount were in the nature of conjugal funds.- In the Rivera case, the court rejected claims that a survivorship agreement purportsto deliver one party's separate properties in favor of the other, but simply, their jointholdings- In the Macam case, it was held that the agreement is an aleatory contract whereby,according to article 1790 of the Civil Code, one of the parties or both reciprocally bindthemselves to give or do something as an equivalent for that which the other party isto give or do in case of the occurrence of an event which is uncertain or will happen atan indeterminate time.- There is no showing that the funds exclusively belonged to one party, and hence itmust be presumed to be conjugal, having been acquired during the existence of themarital relations.- Neither is the survivorship agreement a donation inter vivos, for obvious reasons,because it was to take effect after the death of one party. Secondly, it is not adonation between the spouses because it involved no conveyance of a spouse's ownproperties to the other.- Also, the agreement involves no modification petition of the conjugal partnership, asheld by the CA, by "mere stipulation" and that it is no "cloak" to circumvent the law onconjugal property relations as the spouses are not prohibited by law to invest conjugalproperty, say, by way of a joint and several bank account, more commonlydenominated in banking parlance as an "and/or" account. In the case at bar, thespouses Vitug did not dispose of property in favor of the other, which would havearguably been sanctionable as a prohibited donation. And since the funds wereconjugal, it can not be said that one spouse could have pressured the other in placinghis or her deposits in the money pool.- The validity of the contract seems debatable by reason of its "survivor-take-all"feature, but in reality, that contract imposed a mere obligation with a term, the termbeing death. Such agreements are permitted by the Civil Code under Article 2010
1
- While the court has warned that although the survivorship agreement is per se notcontrary to law its operation or effect may be violative of the law. For instance, if it beshown in a given case that such agreement is a mere cloak to hide an inofficiousdonation, to transfer property in fraud of creditors, or to defeat the legitime of aforced heir, it may be assailed and annulled upon such grounds, there is nodemonstration in this case that the survivorship agreement had been executed forsuch unlawful purposes.
MONTINOLA v HERBOSA
CA REP 2ND 377CAPISTRANO; 1963
NATURE 
Appeal from a judgment of the CFI Manila
FACTS
Montinola filed this action against the heirs of Jose Rizal for the recovery of possessionof personal property (the RIZAL RELICS) allegedly sold to him by Dona Trinidad Rizal. The trial court held that neither party is entitled to possession of property, relyingprincipally on the fact that in Rizal’s MI ULTIMO ADIOS, there was a stanza where Rizalallegedly bequeathed all his property to the Filipino people:
“Sintang Pilipinas, lupakong hinirang…Huling paalam ko’t sayo’y iiwan. Ang lahat at madlanginiwan sa buhay.”
 The handwritten work of Rizal to the mind of the trial courtconstitutes a holographic will giving to the State all his property.(The Court also relied on the enforceability of Spanish judgment convicting Rizal andadjudging in favor of the state P100,000 as indemnity as another basis for holdingthat it is the State that had superior lien over Rizal’s property but for our purposes,only the issue of succession is herein discussed)
ISSUE
WON Rizal’s MI ULTIMU ADIOS which was handwritten by Rizal is a holographic will,which bequeaths to the State all his property (the Rizal relics).
HELD
- An instrument which merely expresses a last wish as a thought or advice but doesnot contain a disposition of property and was not executed with ANIMUS TESTANDIcannot be legally considered a will.- Rizal’s MI ULTIMO ADIOS is a literary piece of work and was so intended. It may beconsidered a will in a grammatical sense, but not in a legal or juridical sense.Assuming arguendo that the concerned 13
th
stanza in the said writing was aholographic will, the fact remains that it is still worthless for noncompliance with themandatory provisions of the Spanish Civil Code.- Art 688 requires that it be drawn on stamped paper corresponding to the year of itsexecution, written in its entirety by the testator and signed by him and must contain a
1
ART. 2010. By an aleatory contract, one of the parties or both reciprocally bind themselves to give or to dosomething in consideration of what the other shall give or do upon the happening of an event which is uncertain, orwhich is to occur at an indeterminate time.

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