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The Incompetent Carmen Caniza v. Court of Appeals, Pedro and Leonora Estrada G.R. No.

110427; February 24, 1997 Facts: Carmen Caniza (94), a spinster, a retire p!arma"ist, an #ormer pro#essor o# t!e Co$$e%e o# C!emistry an &!arma"y o# t!e 'ni(ersity o# t!e &!i$ippines, )as e"$are in"ompetent by *u %ment o# t!e +C R,C in a %uar ians!ip pro"ee in% institute by !er nie"e, -mparo -. .(an%e$ista. /!e )as so a *u %e be"ause o# !er a (an"e a%e an p!ysi"a$ in#irmities )!i"! in"$u e "atara"ts in bot! eyes an seni$e ementia. -mparo -. .(an%e$ista )as appointe $e%a$ %uar ian o# !er person an estate. Ca0iza )as t!e o)ner o# a !ouse an $ot. 1er %uar ian -mparo "ommen"e a suit to e*e"t t!e spouses .stra a #rom t!e sai premises in t!e 2,C o# +uezon City. Comp$aint pertinent$y a$$e%e t!at p$ainti## Ca0iza )as t!e abso$ute o)ner o# t!e property in 3uestion, "o(ere by ,C, No. 27147; t!at out o# 4in ness, s!e !a a$$o)e t!e .stra a /pouses, t!eir "!i$ ren, %ran "!i$ ren an sons5in5$a) to temporari$y resi e in !er !ouse, rent5#ree; t!at Ca0iza a$rea y !a ur%ent nee o# t!e !ouse on a""ount o# !er a (an"e a%e an #ai$in% !ea$t!, 6so #un s "ou$ be raise to meet !er e7penses #or support, maintenan"e an me i"a$ treatment;6 t!at t!rou%! !er %uar ian, Ca0iza !a as4e t!e .stra as (erba$$y an in )ritin% to (a"ate t!e !ouse but t!ey !a re#use to o so; an t!at 6by t!e e#en ants8 a"t o# un$a)#u$$y epri(in% p$ainti## o# t!e possession o# t!e !ouse in 3uestion, t!ey 99 ()ere) enri"!in% t!emse$(es at t!e e7pense o# t!e in"ompetent, be"ause, )!i$e t!ey 99 ()ere) sa(in% money by not payin% any rent #or t!e !ouse, t!e in"ompetent 99 ()as) $osin% mu"! money as !er !ouse "ou$ not be rente by ot!ers.6 -$so a$$e%e )as t!at t!e "omp$aint )as 6#i$e )it!in one (1) year #rom t!e ate o# #irst $etter o# eman ate February :, 1990.6 ;n t!eir -ns)er, t!e e#en ants e"$are t!at t!ey !a been $i(in% in Ca0iza8s !ouse sin"e t!e 19<08s; t!at in "onsi eration o# t!eir #ait!#u$ ser(i"e t!ey !a been "onsi ere by Ca0iza as !er o)n #ami$y, an t!e $atter !a in #a"t e7e"ute a !o$o%rap!i" )i$$ by )!i"! s!e 6be3ueat!e 6. =u %ement )as ren ere by t!e 2etro,C in #a(or o# Ca0iza but it )as re(erse on appea$ by t!e +uezon City R,C. Ca0iza sou%!t to !a(e t!e Court o# -ppea$s re(erse t!e e"ision but #ai$e in t!at attempt. ;t ru$e t!at (a) t!e proper reme y #or Ca0iza )as in ee an accion publiciana in t!e R,C, not an accion interdictal in t!e 2etro,C, sin"e t!e 6 e#en ants !a(e not been in t!e sub*e"t premises as mere tenants or o""upants by to$eran"e, t!ey !a(e been t!ere as a sort o# a opte #ami$y o# Carmen Ca0iza,6 as e(i en"e by )!at purports to be t!e !o$o%rap!i" )i$$ o# t!e p$ainti##; an (b) )!i$e 6sai )i$$, un$ess an unti$ it !as passe probate by t!e proper "ourt, "ou$ not be t!e basis o# e#en ants8 "$aim to t!e property, 99 it is in i"ati(e o# intent an esire on t!e part o# Carmen Ca0iza t!at e#en ants are to remain an are to "ontinue in t!eir o""upan"y an possession, so mu"! so t!at Ca0iza8s super(enin% in"ompeten"y "annot be sai to !a(e (este in !er %uar ian t!e ri%!t or aut!ority to ri(e t!e e#en ants out. ,!ey "on"$u e, on t!ose postu$ates, t!at it is beyon t!e po)er o# Ca0iza8s $e%a$ %uar ian to oust t!em #rom t!e ispute premises.

Carmen Ca0iza ie , an !er !eirs 55 t!e a#orementione %uar ian, -mparo .(an%e$ista, an Ramon C. Ne(a o, !er nie"e an nep!e), respe"ti(e$y 55 )ere by t!is Court8s $ea(e, substitute #or !er. Issue: 1. >!et!er or not .(an%e$ista, as Ca0iza8s $e%a$ %uar ian !a aut!ority to brin% sai a"tion; an 2. >!et!er or not .(an%e$ista may "ontinue to represent Ca0iza a#ter t!e $atter8s eat!.

Rulin : 1. ,!e .stra as insist t!at t!e e(ise o# t!e !ouse to t!em by Ca0iza "$ear$y enotes !er intention t!at t!ey remain in possession t!ereo#, an $e%a$$y in"apa"itate !er *u i"ia$ %uar ian, -mparo .(an%e$ista, #rom e(i"tin% t!em t!ere#rom, sin"e t!eir ouster )ou$ be in"onsistent )it! t!e )ar 8s )i$$. - )i$$ is essentia$$y ambu$atory; at any time prior to t!e testator8s eat!, it may be "!an%e or re(o4e ; an unti$ a mitte to probate, it !as no e##e"t )!ate(er an no ri%!t "an be "$aime t!ereun er, t!e $a) bein% 3uite e7p$i"it? 6No )i$$ s!a$$ pass eit!er rea$ or persona$ property un$ess it is pro(e an a$$o)e in a""or an"e )it! t!e Ru$es o# Court6 (-R,. @:@,i .). An owner's intention to confer title in the future to persons possessing property by his tolerance, is not inconsistent with the former's taking back possession in the meantime for any reason deemed sufficient. And that in this case there was sufficient cause for the owner's resumption of possession is apparent: she needed to generate income from the house on account of the physical infirmities afflicting her, arising from her extreme age. -mparo .(an%e$ista )as appointe by a "ompetent "ourt t!e %enera$ %uar ian o# bot! t!e person an t!e estate o# !er aunt, Carmen Ca0iza. Her Letters of Guardianship clearly installed her as the guardian o!er the person and properties of the incompetent "A#$%& "A&'(A with full authority to take possession of the property of said incompetent in any pro!ince or pro!inces in which it may be situated and to perform all other acts necessary for the management of her properties. . Ay t!at appointment, it be"ame .(an%e$ista8s uty to "are #or !er aunt8s person, to atten to !er p!ysi"a$ an spiritua$ nee s, to assure !er )e$$5bein%, )it! ri%!t to "usto y o# !er person in pre#eren"e to re$ati(es an #rien s. ;t a$so be"ame !er ri%!t an uty to %et possession o#, an e7er"ise "ontro$ o(er, Ca0iza8s property, bot! rea$ an persona$, it bein% re"o%nize prin"ip$e t!at t!e )ar !as no ri%!t to possession or "ontro$ o# !is property urin% !er in"ompeten"y. ,!at ri%!t to mana%e t!e )ar 8s estate "arries )it! it t!e ri%!t to ta4e possession t!ereo# an re"o(er it #rom anyone )!o retains it, an brin% an e#en su"! a"tions as may be nee #u$ #or t!is purpose.

2. -s a$rea y state , Carmen Ca0iza passe a)ay urin% t!e pen en"y o# t!is appea$. ,!e .stra as t!ereupon mo(e to ismiss t!e petition, ar%uin% t!at Ca0iza8s eat!

automati"a$$y terminate t!e %uar ians!ip, -maparo .(an%e$ista $ost a$$ aut!ority as !er *u i"ia$ %uar ian, an "ease to !a(e $e%a$ persona$ity to represent !er in t!e present appea$. ,!e motion is )it!out merit. >!i$e it is in ee )e$$5estab$is!e ru$e t!at t!e re$ations!ip o# %uar ian an )ar is ne"essari$y terminate by t!e eat! o# eit!er t!e %uar ian or t!e )ar , t!e ru$e a##or s no a (anta%e to t!e .stra as. -mparo .(an%e$ista, as nie"e o# Carmen Ca0iza, is one o# t!e $atter8s on$y t)o (2) sur(i(in% !eirs, t!e ot!er bein% Ca0iza8s nep!e), Ramon C. Ne(a o. Bn t!eir motion an by Reso$ution o# t!is Court, t!ey )ere in #a"t substitute as parties in t!e appea$ at bar in p$a"e o# t!e e"ease . )%". *+. ,eath of a party. - After a party dies and the claim is not thereby extinguished, the court shall order, upon proper notice, the legal representati!e of the deceased to appear and be substituted for the deceased within a period of thirty ./01 days, or within such time as may be granted. 'f the legal representati!e fails to appear within said time, the court may order the opposing party to procure the appointment of a legal representati!e of the deceased within a time to be specified by the court, and the representati!e shall immediately appear for and on behalf of the interest of the deceased. 2he court charges in!ol!ed in procuring such appointment, if defrayed by the opposing party, may be reco!ered as costs. 2he heirs of the deceased may be allowed to be substituted for the deceased, without re3uiring the appointment of an executor or administrator and the court may appoint guardian ad litem for the minor heirs.