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Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L.

Tiamson

Discussion Guide I. Modes of Acquiring Title to Public Lands A. Ownership of land must be traced to a government land grant 1. Direct Grants (Homestead, Sales, Free Patent) - land is considered as public land; applicant is qualied; applicant must comply with the condition before the grant is awarded by the State and caused its registration. 2. Indirect Grants (Possession, Prescription, Accretion and Accession) - land becomes ipso facto, by operation of law, private lands; the state merely conrms the title during the proceedings where it is determined, during a court hearing that applicant has qualication and has complied with all the conditions necessary for conrmation of title B. General Conditions Necessary for a Land Grant 1. Alienable and Disposable Lands a) Under Act No. 928 (1903) - Conrmation of Imperfect Titles applied under Spain, Possession, deemed private lands, not subject to classication; public land disposition on lands suitable for agriculture b) Under Act No. 2874 (1919) - Land classication of public land was introduced; classication of land as a legal object; private lands not subject to classication, land registration court makes determination c) Under Republic Act No. 3872 (1964) - Cultural minorities can have titles to Non A and D Lands d) Under Presidential Decree No. 1073 (1977) - Conrmation of Titles Limited in A and D Lands only), Section 4. e) Under Indigenous Peoples Rights Act of 1997 - Ancestral Domain as private property of IP. f) Executive Department - mandate to classify (DENR) g) Congress - re-classify under Section 4 of CARL h) Final forest line by Congress under 1987 Constitution i) DENR vs. Yap (G.R. No. 167707, October 08, 2008) extensively discussed land classication in relation to land disposition 2. Surveyed and Delineated a) No survey No title (1) Survey approval of the Director of Lands before title is issued - Section 107, CA No. 141 (2) Survey approval of the Director of Lands of complex subdivision under Presidential Decree No. 957 (Subdivision and Condominium Buyers Protection Decree); National Housing Authority also has to approved; now LGU has to approve under the Local Government Code (RA No. 7160); implementation arrangement under EO No. 71, S. 1993 (LGU-HLURB) b) DENR as the agency exercising direct control and supervision over survey of lands in the Philippines (Section 4, CA No. 141) (1) Survey Standards - Issues manuals and technical bulletins (2) Direct supervision - Inspection; verication; and approval of surveys

Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

c) LRAs concurrent jurisdiction to approve simple subdivision of registered lands Section 44, Act No. 496 (Land Registration Act)1 in relation to P.D. No. 957 d) Cadastral Surveys - Director of Lands surveys entire municipality before institution of cadastral proceedings under Act No. 2259 (presently incorporated under PD No. 1529); involuntary e) Isolated Surveys - not cadastral, piecemeal, for land disposition and registration 3. Not for Public or Quasi-Public Use or Appropriated by the Government 4. Area limitation under the Constitution and the law a) Under the Philippine Bill of 1902 - 16 hectares b) Under 1936 Constitution - 24 hectares c) Under 1973 Constitution - 24 hectares d) Under 1987 Constitution - 12 hectares 5. Qualication of Applicant a) On Public Land (1) Citizenship - Non-Citizen cannot own land; Free Patent requires that the applicant is natural born (2) Age - Homestead Head of Family (3) Corporations not allowed since 1973 to acquire public lands b) Conrmations of Private Lands (1) Citizenship - Non Citizen cannot register (2) Corporations - the land must be unregistered private lands when it was acquired; C. Public Land Grants in Agricultural Lands 1.Homestead - Title II, Chapter III, Sections 12 to 21 of Commonwealth Act No. 141; Conditioned upon entry, occupation, improvement, cultivation (1/5 of the land), residency (1 year) and nal proof within 5 years a) Homesteader cannot use share tenancy in complying with the conditions (1973) under Presidential Decree No. 152 b) Original homestead grantees or direct compulsory heirs who still own the original homestead at the time of the approval of CARL keeps to retain the same areas as long as they continue to cultivate the homestead under Section 6 of RA No. 6657 as amended. 2. Sales - Title II, Chapter IV, Sections 22 to 32 of Commonwealth Act No. 141; conditioned upon appraisal, bidding, entry, cultivation and payment. 3. Lease - Title II, Chapter V, Sections 33 to 43 of Commonwealth Act No. 141; corporations can lease up to 1,000 hectares, private individuals up to 500 hectares; appraisal, bidding, entry, payment 4. Free Patent - Title II, Chapter VI, Sections 44 to 46 of Commonwealth Act No. 141. Conditioned upon occupation/possession and payment of real property taxes for a
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SECTION44. A registered owner holding one duplicate certicate for several distinct parcels of land may surrender it, with the approval of the court, and take out several certicates for portions thereof. So a registered owner holding separate certicates for several distinct parcels may surrender them, and, with like approval, take out a single duplicate certicate for the whole land, or several certicates for the different portions thereof. Any owner subdividing a tract of registered land into lots shall le with the clerk a plan of such land, when applying for a new certicate or certicates, and the court, before issuing the same, shall cause the plan to be veried and require that all boundaries, streets, and passageways shall be distinctly and accurately delineated thereon. 2

Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

certain period (latest amendment under Republic Act No. 6940; possession of 30 years prior to 1990); ling of application up to 2020 only (Republic Act No. 9176, Extending Free Patents) D. Public Land Grants In Residential, Commercial, Industrial Lands 1. Sales - under Title III, Chapter VIII, Sections 60 to 68 of Commonwealth Act No. 141; appraisal; bidding; entry; introduction of improvements; and payment 2. Republic Act No. 730 (1952) as amended by Presidential Decree No. 2004 - any citizen of legal age, not the owner of a home lot in the municipality or cit; in good faith established his residence on a parcel; not needed for the public service; private or direct sale (appraisal but no bidding); not more than one thousand square meters; occupants has constructed his house on the land and actually resided therein. 10% payment upon approval balance may be paid in full, or in ten equal annual installments; restriction on transfer 15 years; removed under PD No. 2004 (1985) 3. Batas Pambansa Bilang 223 (1982) - any citizen, not a registered owner of a residential land in a municipality, has been actually residing on, and continuously possessing and occupying, under a bona de claim of acquisition of ownership, paid all the real estate taxes thereon since June 12, 1945, and not to exceed 3,000 sqm; not in cities, in capitals of provinces, in rst class, second class third class, and fourth class municipalities, and in townsite reservations; (law expires in 1987) 4. Republic Act No. 10023 (2010) - any citizen; actual occupant, resided under a bona de claim of ownership for 10 years; land not needed for public service and/or public use; all lands zoned as residential; townsites included; delisted military reservation or abandoned military camp included; actual survey; two supporting afdavits of disinterested person(residents) E. Restrictions 1. Commonwealth Act No. 141 (Sections 118, 119, 120, 121 and 123) 2. Presidential Decree No. 2004 (Section 2)33 3. Republic Act No. 10023 (Section 5) F. Under Presidential Decree No. 1521 1. General consideration: Title was obtained not by registration but by operations of law under the assumption that the occupant of the land is qualied and has complied with the conditions set forth. The title is vested to the ipso facto but it has to be conrmed by the State and registered. 2. Section 14, Paragraph (a) - Open, continuous, exclusive and notorious possession and occupation of alienable and disposable lands of the public domain under a bona de claim of ownership since June 12, 1945, or earlier; in 1976 all holders of Spanish titles or grants should apply for registration of their lands under Act No. 496 within six (6) months afterwards Spanish titles cannot be used as evidence of land ownership in any registration proceedings under the Torrens system P.D. No. 892; In 1977 lands that are not declared alienable and disposable are no longer included however long the possession; judicial conrmation of incomplete titles to public land based on unperfected Spanish under the laws and royal decrees in force prior to the transfer or sovereignty from Spain to the United States are disallowed (Presidential Decree No. 1073); 3. Section 14, Paragraph (b) 2 - Those who have acquired ownership of private lands by prescription under the provision of existing laws; prescription of thirty (30) years begins from the moment the State expressly declares that the public dominion property is no longer intended for public service or the development of the national wealth or that the property has been converted into patrimonial; (Heirs of Malabanan v. Republic of the Philippines, G.R. No. 179987, April 29, 2009; Heirs of Rizalino,
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Section 14(2) is patrimonial property as dened in Article 421 in relation to Articles 420 and 422 of the Civil Code. 3

Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

G.R. No. 172011, March 7, 2011; Republic of the Philippines vs. East Silverland Realty Development Corporation; G.R. No. 186961, February 20, 2012; Tan, et al. vs. Republic of the Philippines, G.R. No. 193443, April 16, 2012). In Malabanan, period of possession before declaration of A and D is tacked in counting prescription but the land is A and D at the time of application. 4. Section 14, Paragraph (c) - Right of accession or accretion; a) Ownership over the accretion received by the land adjoining a river is governed by the Civil Code; but land has to be registered otherwise it can be lost by reason of prescription and/or occupation of others (Ignacio Grande vs. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. L-17652, June 30, 1962); b) Article 457 of Civil Code to the owners of lands adjoining the banks of rivers belong the accretion which they gradually receive from the effects of the current of the waters; Law Of The Waters - the accretion resulting from the gradual deposit by or sedimentation from the waters belongs to the owners of the land bordering on streams, torrents, lakes, or rivers; (Maximo Cortes vs. City Of Manila, G.R. No. L-4012, March 25, 1908); c) By law, accretion - the gradual and imperceptible deposit made through the effects of the current of the water belongs to the owner of the land adjacent to the banks of rivers where it forms. The drying up of the river is not accretion. Hence, the dried-up river bed belongs to the State as property of public dominion, not to the riparian owner; they are not open to registration under the Land Registration Act. The adjudication of the lands in as private property is null and void (Republic vs. C.A. and Tancinco, et al., G.R. No. L-61647 October 12, 1984; Republic vs. Santos III and Santos, Jr., November 12, 2012, 2012G.R. No. 160453) 5. Section 14, Paragraph (d) - Those who have acquired ownership of land in any other manner provided for by law. G. Under IPRA Law 1. Identication and delineation of Ancestral Domain 2. Issuance of Ancestral Domain Certicate of Title 3. Ancestral Domain and the Regalian Doctrine (Cruz vs. DENR Secretary) H. Under CARP Law (UPAL) 1. Coverage3 a) All alienable and disposable lands of the public domain devoted to or suitable for agriculture. All other lands owned by the Government devoted to or suitable for agriculture; and All private lands devoted to or suitable for agriculture regardless of the agricultural products raised or that can be raised thereon. 2. Retention Limits Land Area - Retention by the landowner exceed ve (5) hectares. (1) Three (3) hectares may be awarded to each child of the landowner, subject to the following qualications: (1) that he is at least fteen (15) years of age; and (2) that he is actually tilling the land or directly managing the farm. (2) Landowners whose lands have been covered by Presidential Decree No. 27 shall be allowed to keep the area originally retained by them thereunder; (3) Original homestead grantees or direct compulsory heirs who still own the original homestead at the time of the approval of this Act shall retain the same areas as long as they continue to cultivate said homestead. 3. Ceiling Beneciaries Land Area - Not exceeding three (3) hectares, which may cover a contiguous tract of land or several parcels of land cumulated up to the

Section 4 of of Republic Act No. 6657, as amended by Section 3 of Republic Act No. 9700 4

Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

prescribed award limits. A landless beneciary is one who owns less than three (3) hectares of agricultural land. 4. Transferability of Awarded Lands - Cannot be sold, transferred or conveyed for ten (10) years; except: a) Hereditary succession; b) To the government c) To the Land Bank d) Other qualied beneciaries through the DAR for a period of ten (10) years: 5. Repurchase - Children or the spouse of the transferor within a period of two (2) years (Sold to the Government and Land Bank) 6. Collective Title - Option provided that the total area that may be awarded shall not exceed the total award limit of all beneciary. Title to the property shall be issued in the name of the co-owners or the cooperative or collective organization as the case may be. If the certicates of land ownership award are given to cooperatives then the names of the beneciaries must also be listed in the same certicate of land ownership award. 7. Exemptions and Exclusions. (Section 10, RA No. 6657) a) Lands actually, directly and exclusively used for parks, wildlife, forest reserves, reforestation, sh sanctuaries and breeding grounds, watersheds and mangroves; private lands used for prawn farms and shponds; lands used and necessary for national defense, school sites and campuses, public or private schools for educational purposes, seeds and seedlings research and pilot production center, church sites and convents appurtenant, mosque sites and Islamic centers, communal burial grounds and cemeteries, penal colonies and penal farms actually worked by the inmates, government and private research and quarantine centers and all lands with eighteen percent (18%) slope and over, except those already developed. II. Jurisdiction, Procedure, Process A. Patents 1. The power to dispose public lands is under the DENR as provided by Commonwealth Act No. 141 in relation to Executive Order No. 192. 2. DENR provides for the rules and regulations regarding the disposition of public lands including the procedures for the processing of public land applications. (Section 5, PLA; Geukeko vs. Araneta (G.R. No. L-10182, December 24, 1957; 102 Phil 706) 3.The Authority to Determine the Conicting Claims of Applicants and Occupants (Section 102, PLA) 4. DENR a quasi-judicial tribunal; has exclusive jurisdiction over the disposition of lands of the public domain in the absence of specic legislation to the contrary. ; subject to judicial review in case of fraud, imposition or mistake, other than error of judgment in estimating the value or effect of evidence (see Ortua vs. Encarnacion, G.R. No. 39919, January 30, 1934; Custodio Mari vs. Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources (G.R. No. L-5622, December 29, 1952; Mauleon vs. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. L-27762, August 7, 1975) 5. Authority to Sign Patents - General Rule President as Chief Executive; under E.O. No. 192 (1987) reorganizing and the integration of the different Bureaus under the in the Regional/Field Ofce Set-up, the Secretary of the newly organized DENR was given a general mandate to implement public land laws, with powers to delegate includes the power to sign patents and to delegate the same to such ofcers as he may deem t. At present, up to 5 hectares (PENRO), more than 5 but not exceeding 10 (RED), in excess of 10 (Secretary)
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Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

6. Processes and procedure are governed by administrative orders, circulars and manuals; but in general: a) Survey of the Land (Check A and D; Check if Titled; Check other claims); if land is already surveyed; check survey record DENR b) Filing of Application (CENRO) (1) Examination of the Applicant for Personal Qualication to own public land (Check nationality; check total landholding public grant) (2) Examination and Inspection of the Land - Check land allocation record book; Check use and purpose; agricultural, residential, etc. (land patents) (3) Prepare Inspection report - Public Land Inspector; approval of Land Management Ofcer; (4) Approval of application - (CENRO Approves application (a) If FP Patent is prepared at the CENRO for signing of the PENRO (b) If Homestead - entry permit i) Final Proof ii) Re-investigation and preparation of Re-investigation report, (Cultivation, residency, etc) iii) Patent is prepared and transmitted to PENRO for approval and signing (c) If Sales - appraisal and bidding i) Payment ii) Investigation report (Improvements, cultivation, full-payment, etc) iii) Patent is prepared and transmitted to PENRO for approval and signing (5) Approval and signing of Patents (6) Transmission to the Register of Deeds (See Section 103, PD No. 1529) 4 B. Conrmation/Registration Proceedings 1. Judicial proceedings for the registration of lands throughout the Philippines shall be in rem and shall be based on the generally accepted principles underlying the Torrens system. 2. Power LRA a) See Section 6 of PD 1529 b) Register of Deeds, see Section 10 of PD 1529 3. Ordinary vs. Cadastral Proceedings
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Section 103. Certicates of title pursuant to patents. Whenever public land is by the Government alienated, granted or conveyed to any person, the same shall be brought forthwith under the operation of this Decree. It shall be the duty of the ofcial issuing the instrument of alienation, grant, patent or conveyance in behalf of the Government to cause such instrument to be led with the Register of Deeds of the province or city where the land lies, and to be there registered like other deeds and conveyance, whereupon a certicate of title shall be entered as in other cases of registered land, and an owner's duplicate issued to the grantee. The deed, grant, patent or instrument of conveyance from the Government to the grantee shall not take effect as a conveyance or bind the land but shall operate only as a contract between the Government and the grantee and as evidence of authority to the Register of Deeds to make registration. It is the act of registration that shall be the operative act to affect and convey the land, and in all cases under this Decree, registration shall be made in the ofce of the Register of Deeds of the province or city where the land lies. The fees for registration shall be paid by the grantee. After due registration and issuance of the certicate of title, such land shall be deemed to be registered land to all intents and purposes under this Decree. 6

Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

a) Ordinary is isolated and voluntary b) Cadastral is mass and compulsory 4. Procedure is provided under PD No. 1529, voluntary registration (See Section 14 to 30 PD No. 1529); in brief a) Filing of the application (Regional Trial Court, BP No. 129) b) Order setting the date and hour of the Initial hearing which shall not be earlier than forty-ve days nor later than ninety days from the date of the order. c) Publication (1) Publication; (2) Mailing; and (3) Posting. d) Filing of Opposition - Any person claiming an interest may appear and le an opposition on or before the date of initial hearing or anytime as may be allowed by the court. The opposition shall state all the objections to the application and shall set forth the interest claimed by the party; the remedy desired; signed and sworn; e) Default - If no person appears and answers, upon motion of the applicant the court may order a default to be recorded and require the applicant to present evidence. But when an appearance has been entered and an answer led, a default order shall be entered against persons who did not appear and answer. f) Referee/Commisioner - The court may refer the case or any part to a referee; hearing at any place within the province; submit his report thereon to the court within fteen days after the termination of such hearing. Court may adopt the report or set it aside for further proceedings; g) Partial Judgement - All conicting claims of ownership and interest in the land subject of the application determined by the court but the court may render partial judgement where only a portion of the land is contested. h) Judgement - Within ninety (90) days from the date the case is submitted for decision. The Court, after considering the evidence and the reports of the Commissioner of Land Registration and the Director of Lands, nds that the applicant or the oppositor has sufcient title proper for registration, judgment shall be rendered conrming the title of the applicant, or the oppositor, to the land. Becomes nal upon the expiration of thirty (30) days to be counted from the data of receipt of notice of the judgment. An appeal may be taken from the judgment of the court as in ordinary civil cases. i) Issuance of Decree - After judgment has become nal and executory, the court issue an order to LRA for the issuance of the decree of registration and the corresponding certicate of title in favor of the person adjudged entitled to registration. 5. Cadastral Registration Proceedings a) Survey of the Land (1) Purpose: For adjudication and settlement of title to any unregistered lands direct; (2) Order the Director of Lands to cause a cadastral survey of the lands and the plans and technical description be prepared. b) First Notice - Notice to persons claiming any interest in the lands as well as to the general public of the survey, giving as fully and accurately as possible the description of the lands (1) By Publication once in the Ofcial Gazette
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Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

(2) Posting in a conspicuous place on the bulletin board of the municipal building of the municipality in which the lands or any portion thereof is situated. (3) Notice to the mayor of such municipality as well as to the barangay captain and likewise to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan and the Sangguniang Bayan concerned. c) Second Notice - Notice of the date on which the survey of any portion of such lands by posting in the bulletin board of the municipal building of the municipality or barrio in which the lands are situated by the GE or DENR. d) Duty of the G.E. (1)To enter upon the lands for the purpose of the survey; and (2)To mark the boundaries of the lands by monuments set up in proper places thereon. e) Duty of the claimant/s - communicate with the Geodetic Engineer upon his request for all information possessed by such person concerning the boundary lines of any lands to which he claims title or in which he claims any interest. f) Penalty: Any person who shall wilfully obstruct the making of any survey undertaken by the Bureau of Lands or by a licensed Geodetic Engineer duly authorized to conduct the survey under this Section, or shall maliciously interfere with the placing of any monument or remove such monument, or shall destroy or remove any notice of survey posted on the land pursuant to law, shall be punished by a ne of not more than one thousand pesos or by imprisonment for not more than one year, or both. 6. Cadastral Court Proceedings: a) Petition - After the survey the DENR thorough the Solicitor General shall institute original registration proceedings by ling a petition in Regional Trial Court of the place where the land is situated against the holders, claimants, possessors, or occupants of such lands stating that such titles to the land be settled and adjudicated. b) Contents: (1) A description of the lands and shall be accompanied by a plan; and (2) May contain such other data as may serve to furnish full notice to the occupants of the lands and to all persons who may claim any right or interest therein. (3) Where the land consists of two or more parcels held or occupied by different persons, the plan shall indicate the boundaries of the parcels (4) The parcels shall be known as "lots" and shall on the plan led in the case be given separate numbers by the Director of Lands, which numbers shall be known as "cadastral lot numbers". (5) The lots situated within each municipality shall be numbered consecutively beginning with number one and only one series of numbers shall be used. However in cities or townsites, a designation of the landholdings by blocks and lot numbers may be employed instead of the designation by cadastral lot numbers. (6) The cadastral number of a lot shall not be changed after nal decision has been entered decreasing the registration thereof, except by order of court. Future subdivisions of any lot shall be designated by a letter or letters of the alphabet added to the cadastral number of the lot to which the respective subdivisions pertain. The letter with which a subdivision is designated shall be known as its "cadastral letter": Provided, however, that the subdivisions of cities or townsites may be designated by blocks and lot numbers.
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Discussion Guide on the Different Titles to Land and Application Processes Atty. Erwin L. Tiamson

7. Answer - Any claimant in cadastral proceedings, whether named in the notice or not, shall appear before the court and shall le an answer on or before the date of initial hearing or within such further time as may be allowed by the court and shall state: a)Marital status; b)Name of the spouse and the date of marriage, c)Nationality d)Residence and postal address, and e)The age f) The cadastral number of the lot or lots claimed g)The name of the barrio and municipality in which the lots are situated; h)The names and addresses of the owners of the adjoining lots so far as known to the claimant; i) If the claimant is in possession of the lots claimed and can show no express grant of the land by the government, the answer shall state the length of time he has held such possession and the manner in which it has been acquired j) If the claimant is not in possession or occupation of the land, the answer shall fully set forth the interest claimed by him and the time and manner of his acquisition; k)If the lots have been assessed for taxation, their last assessed value; and l) The encumbrances, if any, affecting the lots and the names of adverse claimants, as far as known. 8. Hearing - The trial of the case in a place within the province in which the lands are situated; a) Orders for default and confessions entered, in the same manner as in ordinary land registration proceedings and shall be governed by the same rules. b) All conicting interests shall be adjudicated by the court and decrees awarded in favor of the persons entitled to the lands or to parts thereof and such decrees shall be the basis for issuance of original certicates of title in favor of said persons c) Same effect as certicates of title granted on application for registration of land under ordinary land registration proceedings.