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Legitimes: Compulsory Heirs

149. Tayag vs CA

PROPERTY INVOLVES SEVERAL MILLIONS OF REAL AND PERSONAL PROPERTIES. FACTS:

(1)Respondent Emilie Cayugan in her capacity as the mother and the legal guardian of minor C

Cayugan filed a complaint of Claim for Inheritance against the Petitioner Corito Ocampo who administratix of the estate of the late Atty. Ocampo.

(2)Respondent Emilie Cayugan has been estranged from her husband, Jose Cayugan. Responden and Atty. Ocampo had an illicit relationship with each other. As a result of the illicit relationship, the begot a child named Chad Cuyugan.

(3)Chad had been showered with exceptional affection, fervent love and care by the putative fath for being his only son. This affection can be proven through letters and documents. (4) RESPONDENT'S CONTENTION:

a. although he is illegitimate he is nevertheless entitled to a share in the intestate estate left by his deceases father, AS ONE OF THE SURVIVING HEIRS. b. she is asking for a financial support from the estate of the putative father for she has no means of livelihood and she only depends on the charity c. the plaintiff refused to satisfy the claim for the inheritance against the estate of the deceased. (5) The estate of the deceased has not as yet been inventoried by the

defendant and the inheritance of the surviving heirs including Chad has not been likewise been ascertained. PETITIONER'S CONTENTION: FILED A MOTION TO DISMISS IMPORTANT GROUND: the complaint merely alleged that the minor Chad is an illegitimate of the child of the deceased and actually asking for (6)

the claim of the inheritance, --THIS MAYBE CONSIDERED AS ONE TO COMPEL RECOGNITION. Also, the letters and documents are not a sufficient evidence, the father can no longer testify that he really made it and to establish such filiation child must brought the action during the lifetime of the father. a. action is premature b. no cause of action c. barred of prescription d. she has no legal standing and no judicial personality e. court has no jurisdiction (7) RTC: ordered that the motion to dismiss be denied. CA: Affirmed the decision of the RTC.

ISSUE: Whether or not Chad has the right to claim over his share of inheritance in the estate of the deceased? HELD: Yes. Chad has the right to claim over his share on the estate of the deceased. RATIONALE:

(THE MOTHER PROVED THE FILIATION OF THE SON AND HE FILED IT WITHIN THE PRESCRIPTIVE PERIOD) In this case, SC ruled that if the action is based on the record of birth of the child, final judgment, or admission by the parent of the child's filiation in a public document or in a private handwritten signe instrument, then the action may be brought during the lifetime of the child. However, if the action is on the continuous possession by the child of the status of an illegitimate child, that the action must brought during the lifetime of the alleged parent.

ARTICLE 285 of the Civil Code is the controlling factor since the alleged parent died during the the minority of the child, the action of the for the filiation may be filed within four years from the attainme the majority of the minor. The trial court is therefore, correct in applying the provisions of Article 285 the Civil Code and in holding that private respondent's cause of action has not yet prescribed.

Moreover, the right of the action of the minor child has been vested by filing of the complaint in cou under the regime of the CIvil Code and prior to the effectivity of the Family Code.

CITED CASE: Republic of the Philippines vs. Court of Appeals, et al. where we held that the fact of of the petition already vested in the petitioner her right to file it and to have the same proceed to fin adjudication in accordance with the law in force at the time, and such right can no longer be prejudi impaired by the enactment of a new law. NOTE:

Art. 285. The action for the recognition of natural children may be brought only during the lifetime o presumed parents, except in the following cases: (1) If the father or mother died during the minority of the child, in which case the latter may file the a before the expiration of four years from the attainment of his majority;

Art. 175. Illegitimate children may establish their illegitimate filiation in the same way and on the sa evidence as legitimate children. The action must be brought within the same period specified in Article 173, except when the action based on the second paragraph of Article 172, in which case the action may be brought during the lifetime of the alleged parent.

EXCERPT FROM THE LETTERS OF THE DECEASED TO THE RESPONDENT

. Keep good keep faith keep Chad and yourself for me alone and for me all the time. As I have now save my heart to you and to Chad. . . . Please take good care and pray to Sto. Niño for our sake and for the child sake. . . . Keep him. Take good care of him. . . . I'm proud that you are his mother. . . I'm proud of him and you. Let me bless him by my name a me entitle him to all what I am and what I've got. . . . I have vowed to recognize him and be my heir. . . . How is CHAD and you . . . . . . Why should we not start now to own him, jointly against the whole world. After all we love each and CHAD is the product of our love.