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WILLS AND SUCCESSION

I. GENERAL PROVISIONS

A. Defnition and Concept

Art. 774. Succession is a mode of acquisition by virtue of
which the property, rights and obligations to the extent of the
value of the inheritance, of a person are transmitted through
his death to another or others either by his will or by
operation of law. (n)
Art. 71. Ownership is acquired by occupation and by
intellectual creation.
Ownership and other real rights over property are
acquired and transmitted by law, by donation, by estate and
intestate succession, and in consequence of certain contracts,
by tradition.
They may also be acquired by means of prescription.
(!"a)
Art. 1!11. #ontracts ta$e e%ect only between the
parties, their assigns and heirs, except in case where the
rights and obligations arising from the contract are not
transmissible by their nature, or by stipulation or by provision
of law. The heir is not liable beyond the value of the property
he received from the decedent.
&f a contract should contain some stipulation in favor of a
third person, he may demand its ful'llment provided he
communicated his acceptance to the obligor before its
revocation. ( mere incidental bene't or interest of a person is
not su)cient. The contracting parties must have clearly and
deliberately conferred a favor upon a third person. (*+,-a)
.asis of /aw of Succession
/egal 0hilosophy of the #ivil #ode on Succession
1undamental changes in the 2##
". La# $o%ernin$ &or'
1. A( to ti'e o& e)ec*tion
Art. 7+,. The validity of a will as to its form depends
upon the observance of the law in force at the time it is made.
. A( to p-ace o& e)ec*tion
Art. 17. The forms and solemnities of contracts, wills,
and other public instruments shall be governed by the laws of
the country in which they are executed.
3hen the acts referred to are executed before the
diplomatic or consular o)cials of the 4epublic of the
0hilippines in a foreign country, the solemnities established by
0hilippine laws shall be observed in their execution.
0rohibitive laws concerning persons, their acts or
property, and those which have, for their ob5ect, public order,
public policy and good customs shall not be rendered
ine%ective by laws or 5udgments promulgated, or by
determinations or conventions agreed upon in a foreign
country. (**a)

Art. .1/. ( person may execute a holographic will which
must be entirely written, dated, and signed by the hand of the
testator himself. &t is sub5ect to no other form, and may be
made in or out of the 0hilippines, and need not be witnessed.
(-6, 66a)
Art. .1,. 3hen a 1ilipino is in a foreign country, he is
authori7ed to ma$e a will in any of the forms established by
the law of the country in which he may be. Such will may be
probated in the 0hilippines. (n)
Art. .10. The will of an alien who is abroad produces
e%ect in the 0hilippines if made with the formalities prescribed
by the law of the place in which he resides, or according to
the formalities observed in his country, or in conformity with
those which this #ode prescribes. (n)
Art. .17. ( will made in the 0hilippines by a citi7en or
sub5ect of another country, which is executed in accordance
with the law of the country of which he is a citi7en or sub5ect,
and which might be proved and allowed by the law of his own
country, shall have the same e%ect as if executed according
to the laws of the 0hilippines. (n)
Art. .1.. Two or more persons cannot ma$e a will 5ointly,
or in the same instrument, either for their reciprocal bene't or
for the bene't of a third person. (")
Art. .1+. 3ills, prohibited by the preceding article,
executed by 1ilipinos in a foreign country shall not be valid in
the 0hilippines, even though authori7ed by the laws of the
country where they may have been executed. (-88a)
In re Wi-- o& Re%. A1adia2 ,/ O.G. 3+2 p. 41.,
The validity of a will is to be 5udged not by the law enforce at
the time of the testator9s death or at the time the supposed
will is presented in court for probate or when the petition is
decided by the court but at the time the instrument was
executed.
3hen one executes a will which is invalid for failure to
observe and follow the legal requirements at the time of its
execution then upon his death he should be regarded and
declared as having died intestate, and his heirs will then
inherit by intestate succession, and no subsequent law with
more liberal requirements or which dispenses with such
requirements as to execution should be allowed to validate a
defective will and thereby divest the heirs of their vested
rights in the estate by intestate succession. The general rule
is that the /egislature cannot validate void wills
4-e*'er %. 5i)2 ,4 P6i-. 01/
The laws of a foreign 5urisdiction do not prove themselves in
our courts. The courts of the 0hilippine &slands are not
authori7ed to ta$e (merican :nion. Such laws must be proved
as facts.
E(tate o& Gi1er(on2 4. O.G. 372 0,7
De-a Cerna %. Potot2 1 SCRA ,70
(rticle 6*6 of the #ode prohibits the execution of 5oint wills,
whether they be for the reciprocal bene't of the testators, or
for the bene't of a third person. ;owever, it must be noted
that if a probate court erroneously admitted a 5oint will to
probate, the error thus committed would be considered an
error of law and not of 5urisdiction. Therefore, such an error
must be corrected by appeal< failing which the erroneous
decision would become 'nal.
The foregoing notwithstanding, please note that in the
following case, the 5oint will, while deemed operative with
respect to the husband, was considered void as to the wife.
The issue of 5urisdiction should be noted in particular.
E(tate o& Rodri$*e72 40 O.G. 3 2 p. ,.4
C. La# $o%ernin$ content
1. A( to ti'e
Art. 0!. 4ights to the inheritance of a person who
died, with or without a will, before the e%ectivity of this #ode,
shall be governed by the #ivil #ode of *66", by other previous
laws, and by the 4ules of #ourt. The inheritance of those who,
with or without a will, die after the beginning of the e%ectivity
of this #ode, shall be ad5udicated and distributed in
accordance with this new body of laws and by the 4ules of
#ourt< but the testamentary provisions shall be carried out
insofar as they may be permitted by this #ode. Therefore,
legitimes, betterments, legacies and bequests shall be
respected< however, their amount shall be reduced if in no
other manner can every compulsory heir be given his full
share according to this #ode. (4ule *+a)
. A( to (*cce((iona- ri$6t(
Art. 1089. ;owever, intestate and testamentary
successions, both with respect to the order of succession and
to the amount of successional rights and to the intrinsic
validity of testamentary provisions, shall be regulated by the
national law of the person whose succession is under
consideration, whatever may be the nature of the property
and regardless of the country wherein said property may be
found. (*!a)
Art. 1/!+. #apacity to succeed is governed by the law
of the nation of the decedent.
E(tate o& C6ri(ten(en2 01 O.G. 3 402 p. 7!/
E(tate o& A'o( "e--i(2 / SCRA !,.
The 1O4=(/ >(/&?&T@ of a will depends upon the observance
of the law in force at the time of execution. On the other
hand, the S:.ST(2T&>A >(/&?&T@ of the dispositions therein is
governed by the laws in force at the time of the death of the
testator.
Artic-e 1089 and Art. 1/!+ o& t6e Ci%i- Code2 render
applicable the national law of the decedent, in intestate or
testamentary successions, with regard to four itemsB (a) the
order of succession< (b) the amount of successional rights< (e)
the intrinsic validity of the provisions of the will< and (d) the
capacity to succeed.
Ca:etano %. Leonide(2 1+ SCRA ,4
(s a general rule, the probate court9s authority is limited only
to the extrinsic validity of the will, the due execution thereof,
the testatrix9s testamentary capacity and the compliance with
the requisites or solemnities prescribed by law. The intrinsic
validity of the will normally comes only after the court has
declared that the will has been duly authenticated. ;owever,
where practical considerations demand that the intrinsic
validity of the will be passed upon, even before it is probated,
the court should meet the issue.
(rticle 6,C does not apply in the case of a foreign testator
who omits in his or her will the compulsory heirs in the direct
line. &n the case of a foreign testator, the conDict rule
enunciated in (rticle * of the #ivil #ode applies. Therefore,
regardless of whatever public policy or good customs may be
involved, the provision of (rticle 6,C of the #ivil #ode is never
meant to apply to a foreign testator.
D. S*1;ect( o& S*cce((ion
Art. 77,. &n this Title, EdecedentE is the general term
applied to the person whose property is transmitted through
succession, whether or not he left a will. &f he left a will, he is
also called the testator. (n)
Art. 7.. (n heir is a person called to the succession
either by the provision of a will or by operation of law.
?evisees and legatees are persons to whom gifts of real
and personal property are respectively given by virtue of a
will. (n)
Art. ..7. The following are compulsory heirsB
(*) /egitimate children and descendants, with respect to
their legitimate parents and ascendants<
(+) &n default of the foregoing, legitimate parents and
ascendants, with respect to their legitimate children and
descendants<
(8) The widow or widower<
(C) (c$nowledged natural children, and natural children
by legal 'ction<
(,) Other illegitimate children referred to in (rticle +6-.
#ompulsory heirs mentioned in 2os. 8, C, and , are not
excluded by those in 2os. * and +< neither do they exclude
one another.
&n all cases of illegitimate children, their 'liation must be
duly proved.
The father or mother of illegitimate children of the three
classes mentioned, shall inherit from them in the manner and
to the extent established by this #ode. (6!-a)
Art. 1//!. &f there are no descendants, ascendants,
illegitimate children, or a surviving spouse, the collateral
relatives shall succeed to the entire estate of the deceased in
accordance with the following articles. ("Ca)
1. W6o are t6e (*1;ect(<

. Re-ation(6ip
Art. +0!. 0roximity of relationship is determined by the
number of generations. Aach generation forms a degree.
("*,)
Art. +04. ( series of degrees forms a line, which may be
either direct or collateral.
( direct line is that constituted by the series of degrees
among ascendants and descendants.
( collateral line is that constituted by the series of
degrees among persons who are not ascendants and
descendants, but who come from a common ancestor. ("*a)
Art. +0,. The direct line is either descending or
ascending.
The former unites the head of the family with those who
descend from him.
The latter binds a person with those from whom he
descends. ("*-)
Art. +00. &n the line, as many degrees are counted as
there are generations or persons, excluding the progenitor.
&n the direct line, ascent is made to the common
ancestor. Thus, the child is one degree removed from the
parent, two from the grandfather, and three from the greatF
grandparent.
&n the collateral line, ascent is made to the common
ancestor and then descent is made to the person with whom
the computation is to be made. Thus, a person is two degrees
removed from his brother, three from his uncle, who is the
brother of his father, four from his 'rst cousin, and so forth.
("*6a)
Art. +07. 1ull blood relationship is that existing between
persons who have the same father and the same mother.
;alfFblood relationship is that existing between persons
who have the same father, but not the same mother, or the
same mother, but not the same father. ("+!a)
Art. +0.. &f there are several relatives of the same
degree, and one or some of them are unwilling or
incapacitated to succeed, his portion shall accrue to the
others of the same degree, save the right of representation
when it should ta$e place. ("++)
Art. +0+. &f the inheritance should be repudiated by the
nearest relative, should there be one only, or by all the
nearest relatives called by law to succeed, should there be
several, those of the following degree shall inherit in their own
right and cannot represent the person or persons repudiating
the inheritance. ("+8)
!. Capacit: to S*cceed
Art. 1/4. 0ersons not incapacitated by law may
succeed by will or ab intestato.
a. Deter'ination
Art. 1/!4. &n order to 5udge the capacity of the heir,
devisee or legatee, his quali'cation at the time of the death of
the decedent shall be the criterion.
&n cases falling under 2os. +, 8, or , of (rticle *!8+, it
shall be necessary to wait until 'nal 5udgment is rendered,
and in the case falling under 2o. C, the expiration of the
month allowed for the report.
&f the institution, devise or legacy should be conditional,
the time of the compliance with the condition shall also be
considered. (-,6a)
Art. 1/!+. #apacity to succeed is governed by the law
of the nation of the decedent. (n)
Art. 1089. ;owever, intestate and testamentary
successions, both with respect to the order of succession and
to the amount of successional rights and to the intrinsic
validity of testamentary provisions, shall be regulated by the
national law of the person whose succession is under
consideration, whatever may be the nature of the property
and regardless of the country wherein said property may be
found. (*!a)

Ca:etano %. Leonide(2 1+ SCRA ,


(rticle 6,C does not apply in the case of a foreign testator
who omits in his or her will the compulsory heirs in the direct
line. &n the case of a foreign testator, the conDict rule
enunciated in (rticle * of the #ivil #ode applies. Therefore,
regardless of whatever public policy or good customs may be
involved, the provision of (rticle 6,C of the #ivil #ode cannot
is never meant to apply to a foreign testator.
1. W6o 'a: (*cceed<
Art. 1/4. 0ersons not incapacitated by law may
succeed by will or ab intestato.
The provisions relating to incapacity by will are equally
applicable to intestate succession. (-CC, "*C)
Art. 1/,. &n order to be capacitated to inherit, the heir,
devisee or legatee must be living at the moment the
succession opens, except in case of representation, when it is
proper.
( child already conceived at the time of the death of the
decedent is capable of succeeding provided it be born later
under the conditions prescribed in article C*. (n)
Art. 1/0. ( testamentary disposition may be made to
the State, provinces, municipal corporations, private
corporations, organi7ations, or associations for religious,
scienti'c, cultural, educational, or charitable purposes.
(ll other corporations or entities may succeed under a
will, unless there is a provision to the contrary in their charter
or the laws of their creation, and always sub5ect to the same.
(-Ca)
Art. 1/7. The following are incapable of succeedingB
(*) The priest who heard the confession of the testator
during his last illness, or the minister of the gospel who
extended spiritual aid to him during the same period<
(+) The relatives of such priest or minister of the gospel
within the fourth degree, the church, order, chapter,
community, organi7ation, or institution to which such priest or
minister may belong<
(8) ( guardian with respect to testamentary dispositions
given by a ward in his favor before the 'nal accounts of the
guardianship have been approved, even if the testator should
die after the approval thereof< nevertheless, any provision
made by the ward in favor of the guardian when the latter is
his ascendant, descendant, brother, sister, or spouse, shall be
valid<
(C) (ny attesting witness to the execution of a will, the
spouse, parents, or children, or any one claiming under such
witness, spouse, parents, or children<
(,) (ny physician, surgeon, nurse, health o)cer or
druggist who too$ care of the testator during his last illness<
() &ndividuals, associations and corporations not
permitted by law to inherit. (-C,, -,+, -,8, -,Ca)
Art. 1/.. The prohibitions mentioned in article -8",
concerning donations inter vivos shall apply to testamentary
provisions. (n)
Art. 1/+. Should the testator dispose of the whole or
part of his property for prayers and pious wor$s for the bene't
of his soul, in general terms and without specifying its
application, the executor, with the court9s approval shall
deliver oneFhalf thereof or its proceeds to the church or
denomination to which the testator may belong, to be used
for such prayers and pious wor$s, and the other half to the
State, for the purposes mentioned in (rticle *!*8. (-C-a)
Art. 1/!/. Testamentary provisions in favor of the poor
in general, without designation of particular persons or of any
community, shall be deemed limited to the poor living in the
domicile of the testator at the time of his death, unless it
should clearly appear that his intention was otherwise.
The designation of the persons who are to be considered
as poor and the distribution of the property shall be made by
the person appointed by the testator for the purpose< in
default of such person, by the executor, and should there be
no executor, by the 5ustice of the peace, the mayor, and the
municipal treasurer, who shall decide by a ma5ority of votes
all questions that may arise. &n all these cases, the approval of
the #ourt of 1irst &nstance shall be necessary.
The preceding paragraph shall apply when the testator
has disposed of his property in favor of the poor of a de'nite
locality. (-C"a)
Pari(6 Prie(t o& Victoria %. Ri$or2 .+ SCRA 4+!
#apacity to succeed is determined from the moment of the
death of the testator or the decedent. To be capacitated, an
heir, legatee or devisee must be living at the time succession
opens, except in case of representation whenever
appropriate. ( testamentary disposition giving a devise to the
nearest male relative who would pursue an ecclesiastical
career is meant to refer to such relatives living (or at least
conceived) at the time of the testator9s death. ( contrary
interpretation may be upheld only if there is a clear intention
to the contrary. 2evertheless, the enforceability of such a
testamentary disposition is necessarily limited to twenty years
from the time succession opens, in order that the disposition
be consistent with the rule prohibiting perpetuities.
c. W6o are incapa1-e o& (*cceedin$<
Art. 1/,.
Art. 1/7.
Art. 1/..
Art.1/!1. ( testamentary provision in favor of a
disquali'ed person, even though made under the guise of an
onerous contract, or made through an intermediary, shall be
void. (-,,)
Art. 1/!. The following are incapable of succeeding by
reason of unworthinessB
(*) 0arents who have abandoned their children or induced
their daughters to lead a corrupt or immoral life, or attempted
against their virtue<
(+) (ny person who has been convicted of an attempt
against the life of the testator, his or her spouse,
descendants, or ascendants<
(8) (ny person who has accused the testator of a crime
for which the law prescribes imprisonment for six years or
more, if the accusation has been found groundless<
(C) (ny heir of full age who, having $nowledge of the
violent death of the testator, should fail to report it to an
o)cer of the law within a month, unless the authorities have
already ta$en action< this prohibition shall not apply to cases
wherein, according to law, there is no obligation to ma$e an
accusation<
(,) (ny person convicted of adultery or concubinage with
the spouse of the testator<
() (ny person who by fraud, violence, intimidation, or
undue inDuence should cause the testator to ma$e a will or to
change one already made<
(-) (ny person who by the same means prevents another
from ma$ing a will, or from revo$ing one already made, or
who supplants, conceals, or alters the latter9s will<
(6) (ny person who falsi'es or forges a supposed will of
the decedent. (-,, -8, -Ca)
Art. 1/!!. The cause of unworthiness shall be without
e%ect if the testator had $nowledge thereof at the time he
made the will, or if, having $nown of them subsequently, he
should condone them in writing. (-,-a)
Art. ++/. The hereditary rights granted by the two
preceding articles to illegitimate children shall be transmitted
upon their death to their descendants, who shall inherit by
right of representation from their deceased grandparent.
("C*a)
Art. ++1. &f legitimate ascendants are left, the
illegitimate children shall divide the inheritance with them,
ta$ing oneFhalf of the estate, whatever be the number of the
ascendants or of the illegitimate children. ("C+F6C*a)
Art. ++. (n illegitimate child has no right to inherit ab
intestato from the legitimate children and relatives of his
father or mother< nor shall such children or relatives inherit in
the same manner from the illegitimate child. ("C8a)

d. E=ect o& a-ienation( 1: t6e e)c-*ded 6eir
Art. 1/!0. (lienations of hereditary property, and acts
of administration performed by the excluded heir, before the
5udicial order of exclusion, are valid as to the third persons
who acted in good faith< but the coFheirs shall have a right to
recover damages from the disquali'ed heir. (n)
e. Ri$6t( o& t6e e)c-*ded 6eir
Art. 1/!,. &f the person excluded from the inheritance
by reason of incapacity should be a child or descendant of the
decedent and should have children or descendants, the latter
shall acquire his right to the legitime.
The person so excluded shall not en5oy the usufruct and
administration of the property thus inherited by his children.
(-*a)
Art. 1+!7. =ovable or immovable property may be the
ob5ect of commodatum.
Art. 1/14. &f a person legally entitled to the estate of
the deceased appears and 'les a claim thereto with the court
within 've years from the date the property was delivered to
the State, such person shall be entitled to the possession of
the same, or if sold the municipality or city shall be
accountable to him for such part of the proceeds as may not
have been lawfully spent. (n)

&. Lia1i-itie( o& t6e e)c-*ded 6eir
Art. 1/!.. (ny person incapable of succession, who,
disregarding the prohibition stated in the preceding articles,
entered into the possession of the hereditary property, shall
be obliged to return it together it its accessions.
;e shall be liable for all the fruits and rents he may have
received, or could have received through the exercise of due
diligence. (-!a)

$. Pre(cription o& Action
Art. 1/4/. The action for a declaration of incapacity and
for the recovery of the inheritance, devise or legacy shall be
brought within 've years from the time the disquali'ed person
too$ possession thereof. &t may be brought by anyone who
may have an interest in the succession. (-+a)
E. O1;ect o& S*cce((ion
Art. 770. The inheritance includes all the property, rights
and obligations of a person which are not extinguished by his
death. (,")
Art. 7.1. The inheritance of a person includes not only
the property and the transmissible rights and obligations
existing at the time of his death, but also those which have
accrued thereto since the opening of the succession. (n)
Art. 1!11. #ontracts ta$e e%ect only between the
parties, their assigns and heirs, except in case where the
rights and obligations arising from the contract are not
transmissible by their nature, or by stipulation or by provision
of law. The heir is not liable beyond the value of the property
he received from the decedent.
&f a contract should contain some stipulation in favor of a
third person, he may demand its ful'llment provided he
communicated his acceptance to the obligor before its
revocation. ( mere incidental bene't or interest of a person is
not su)cient. The contracting parties must have clearly and
deliberately conferred a favor upon a third person. (*+,-a)
Art. 14+. 3hen a testate or intestate heir voluntarily
pays a debt of the decedent exceeding the value of the
property which he received by will or by the law of intestacy
from the estate of the deceased, the payment is valid and
cannot be rescinded by the payer.
Art. 117.. Sub5ect to the laws, all rights acquired in
virtue of an obligation are transmissible, if there has been no
stipulation to the contrary. (***+)
Art. 1!47. (ll things which are not outside the
commerce of men, including future things, may be the object
of a contract. (ll rights which are not intransmissible may also
be the ob5ect of contracts.
2o contract may be entered into upon future inheritance
except in cases expressly authori7ed by law.
(ll services which are not contrary to law, morals, good
customs, public order or public policy may li$ewise be the
ob5ect of a contract. (*+-*a)
RPC2 Art. 1/.. Obligation to ma$e restoration,
reparation for damages, or indemni'cation for consequential
damages and actions to demand the same< :pon whom it
devolves. G The obligation to ma$e restoration or reparation
for damages and indemni'cation for consequential damages
devolves upon the heirs of the person liable.
The action to demand restoration, reparation, and
indemni'cation li$ewise descends to the heirs of the person
in5ured.
Re:e( %. CA2 S.C. L>,0/ ?*-: !12 1+,4
The natural children of the deceased in this case are
questioning the intrinsic validity of the will on the ground that
his compulsory heir cannot be one, as theirs was an illicit
relationship. S# held that as a general rule, courts in probate
proceedings are limited to pass only upon the extrinsic
validity of the will sought to be probated. There are, however,
notable circumstances wherein the intrinsic validity was 'rst
determined as when the defect of the will is apparent on its
face and the probate of the will may become a useless
ceremony if it is intrinsically invalid. The intrinsic validity of a
will may be passed upon because Hpractical considerationsI
demanded it as when there is preterition of heirs or the
testamentary provisions are doubtful legality. &n this case
however, there was never an open admission of any illicit
relationship. Thus, there was no need to go beyond the face of
the will.
G*into %. @edina2 ,/ O.G. 3 12 p. 1++2 Oct. 72 1+,!
4. Openin$ o& S*cce((ion
Art. 777. The rights to the succession are transmitted
from the moment of the death of the decedent. (,-a)
Art. 0!. 4ights to the inheritance of a person who
died, with or without a will, before the e%ectivity of this #ode,
shall be governed by the #ivil #ode of *66", by other previous
laws, and by the 4ules of #ourt. The inheritance of those who,
with or without a will, die after the beginning of the e%ectivity
of this #ode, shall be ad5udicated and distributed in
accordance with this new body of laws and by the 4ules of
#ourt< but the testamentary provisions shall be carried out
insofar as they may be permitted by this #ode. Therefore,
legitimes, betterments, legacies and bequests shall be
respected< however, their amount shall be reduced if in no
other manner can every compulsory heir be given his full
share according to this #ode. (4ule *+a)
Art. ,!. The #ivil #ode of *66" and other previous
laws shall govern rights originating, under said laws, from acts
done or events which too$ place under their regime, even
though this #ode may regulate them in a di%erent manner, or
may not recogni7e them. .ut if a right should be declared for
the 'rst time in this #ode, it shall be e%ective at once, even
though the act or event which gives rise thereto may have
been done or may have occurred under prior legislation,
provided said new right does not pre5udice or impair any
vested or acquired right, of the same origin. (4ule *)
Art. ,!!. The possession of hereditary property is
deemed transmitted to the heir without interruption and from
the moment of the death of the decedent, in case the
inheritance is accepted.
One who validly renounces an inheritance is deemed
never to have possessed the same. (CC!)
Art. 1!47. (ll things which are not outside the
commerce of men, including future things, may be the ob5ect
of a contract. (ll rights which are not intransmissible may also
be the ob5ect of contracts.
2o contract may be entered into upon future inheritance
except in cases expressly authori7ed by law.
(ll services which are not contrary to law, morals, good
customs, public order or public policy may li$ewise be the
ob5ect of a contract. (*+-*a)
Art. 1401. Things having a potential existence may be
the ob5ect of the contract of sale.
The e)cacy of the sale of a mere hope or expectancy is
deemed sub5ect to the condition that the thing will come into
existence.
The sale of a vain hope or expectancy is void. (n)
Art. 1!/. The future spouses may give each other in
their marriage settlements as much as oneF'fth of their
present property, and with respect to their future property,
only in the event of death, to the extent laid down by the
provisions of this #ode referring to testamentary succession.
(*88*a)
Art. 1!. ( donation by reason of marriage is not
revocable, save in the following casesB
(*) &f it is conditional and the condition is not complied
with<
(+) &f the marriage is not celebrated<
(8) 3hen the marriage ta$es place without the consent of
the parents or guardian, as required by law<
(C) 3hen the marriage is annulled, and the donee acted
in bad faith<
(,) :pon legal separation, the donee being the guilty
spouse<
() 3hen the donee has committed an act of ingratitude
as speci'ed by the provisions of this #ode on donations in
general. (*888a)
Art. !+/. (fter an absence of seven years, it being
un$nown whether or not the absentee still lives, he shall be
presumed dead for all purposes, except for those of
succession.
The absentee shall not be presumed dead for the purpose
of opening his succession till after an absence of ten years. &f
he disappeared after the age of seventyF've years, an
absence of 've years shall be su)cient in order that his
succession may be opened. (n)
Art. !+1. The following shall be presumed dead for all
purposes, including the division of the estate among the heirsB
(*) ( person on board a vessel lost during a sea voyage,
or an aeroplane which is missing, who has not been heard of
for four years since the loss of the vessel or aeroplane<
(+) ( person in the armed forces who has ta$en part in
war, and has been missing for four years<
(8) ( person who has been in danger of death under
other circumstances and his existence has not been $nown for
four years. (n)
4C2 Art. .4. &f the future spouses agree upon a regime
other than the absolute community of property, they cannot
donate to each other in their marriage settlements more than
oneF'fth of their present property. (ny excess shall be
considered void.
?onations of future property shall be governed by the
provisions on testamentary succession and the formalities of
wills. (*8!a)
4C2 Art. .0. ( donation by reason of marriage may be
revo$ed by the donor in the following casesB
(*) &f the marriage is not celebrated or 5udicially declared
void ab initio except donations made in the marriage
settlements, which shall be governed by (rticle 6*<
(+) 3hen the marriage ta$es place without the consent of
the parents or guardian, as required by law<
(8) 3hen the marriage is annulled, and the donee acted
in bad faith<
(C) :pon legal separation, the donee being the guilty
spouse<
(,) &f it is with a resolutory condition and the condition is
complied with<
() 3hen the donee has committed an act of ingratitude
as speci'ed by the provisions of the #ivil #ode on donations in
general. (*8+a)
ReA*i(ite( &or t6e tran('i((ion o& S*cce((iona- Ri$6t(
1. E)pre(( #i-- o& t6e te(tator or pro%i(ion o& -a#
. Deat6 o& t6e per(on #6o(e propert: i( t6e (*1;ect o&
(*cce((ion
Art. 4!. &f there is a doubt, as between two or more
persons who are called to succeed each other, as to which of
them died 'rst, whoever alleges the death of one prior to the
other, shall prove the same< in the absence of proof, it is
presumed that they died at the same time and there shall be
no transmission of rights from one to the other. (88)
Survivorship 4ule
4O#, 4ule *8*, J8(ii) par.,
(ii) That a trustee or other person whose duty it was to
convey real property to a particular person has actually
conveyed it to him when such presumption is necessary to
perfect the title of such person or his successor in interest
(55) That except for purposes of succession, when two
persons perish in the same calamity, such as wrec$, battle, or
conDagration, and it is not shown who died 'rst, and there are
no particular circumstances from which it can be inferred, the
survivorship is determined from the probabilities resulting
from the strength and the age of the sexes, according to the
following rulesB
*. &f both were under the age of 'fteen years, the older
is deemed to have survived<
+. &f both were above the age sixty, the younger is
deemed to have survived<
8. &f one is under 'fteen and the other above sixty, the
former is deemed to have survived<
C. &f both be over 'fteen and under sixty, and the sex
be di%erent, the male is deemed to have survived, if the sex
be the same, the older<
,. &f one be under 'fteen or over sixty, and the other
between those ages, the latter is deemed to have survived.
!. Acceptance o& t6e in6eritance
Art. 1/41. The acceptance or repudiation of the
inheritance is an act which is purely voluntary and free. ("66)
Art. 1/4. The e%ects of the acceptance or repudiation
shall always retroact to the moment of the death of the
decedent. ("6")
Art. 1/4!. 2o person may accept or repudiate an
inheritance unless he is certain of the death of the person
from whom he is to inherit, and of his right to the inheritance.
(""*)
Art. 1/44. (ny person having the free disposal of his
property may accept or repudiate an inheritance.
(ny inheritance left to minors or incapacitated persons
may be accepted by their parents or guardians. 0arents or
guardians may repudiate the inheritance left to their wards
only by 5udicial authori7ation.
The right to accept an inheritance left to the poor shall
belong to the persons designated by the testator to determine
the bene'ciaries and distribute the property, or in their
default, to those mentioned in (rticle *!8!. (""+a)
Art. 1/4,. The lawful representatives of corporations,
associations, institutions and entities quali'ed to acquire
property may accept any inheritance left to the latter, but in
order to repudiate it, the approval of the court shall be
necessary. (""8a)
Art. 1/40. 0ublic o)cial establishments can neither
accept nor repudiate an inheritance without the approval of
the government. (""C)
Art. 1/47. ( married woman of age may repudiate an
inheritance without the consent of her husband. ("",a)
Art. 1/4.. ?eafFmutes who can read and write may
accept or repudiate the inheritance personally or through an
agent. Should they not be able to read and write, the
inheritance shall be accepted by their guardians. These
guardians may repudiate the same with 5udicial approval.
(""a)
Art. 1/4+. (cceptance may be express or tacit.
(n express acceptance must be made in a public or
private document.
( tacit acceptance is one resulting from acts by which the
intention to accept is necessarily implied, or which one would
have no right to do except in the capacity of an heir.
(cts of mere preservation or provisional administration do
not imply an acceptance of the inheritance if, through such
acts, the title or capacity of an heir has not been assumed.
("""a)
Art. 1/,/. (n inheritance is deemed acceptedB
(*) &f the heir sells, donates, or assigns his right to a
stranger, or to his coFheirs, or to any of them<
(+) &f the heir renounces the same, even though
gratuitously, for the bene't of one or more of his coFheirs<
(8) &f he renounces it for a price in favor of all his coFheirs
indiscriminately< .:T if this renunciation should be gratuitous,
and the coFheirs in whose favor it is made are those upon
whom the portion renounced should devolve by virtue of
accretion, the inheritance shall not be deemed as accepted.
(*!!!)
Art. 1/,1. The repudiation of an inheritance shall be
made in a public or authentic instrument, or by petition
presented to the court having 5urisdiction over the
testamentary or intestate proceedings. (*!!6)
Art. 1/,. &f the heir repudiates the inheritance to the
pre5udice of his own creditors, the latter may petition the
court to authori7e them to accept it in the name of the heir.
The acceptance shall bene't the creditors only to an
extent su)cient to cover the amount of their credits. The
excess, should there be any, shall in no case pertain to the
renouncer, but shall be ad5udicated to the persons to whom,
in accordance with the rules established in this #ode, it may
belong. (*!!*)
Art. 1/,!. &f the heir should die without having accepted
or repudiated the inheritance his right shall be transmitted to
his heirs. (*!!)
Art. 1/,4. Should there be several heirs called to the
inheritance, some of them may accept and the others may
repudiate it. (*!!-a)
Art. 1/,,. &f a person, who is called to the same
inheritance as an heir by will and ab intestato, repudiates the
inheritance in his capacity as a testamentary heir, he is
understood to have repudiated it in both capacities.
Should he repudiate it as an intestate heir, without
$nowledge of his being a testamentary heir, he may still
accept it in the latter capacity. (*!!")
Art. 1/,0. The acceptance or repudiation of an
inheritance, once made, is irrevocable, and cannot be
impugned, except when it was made through any of the
causes that vitiate consent, or when an un$nown will appears.
(""-)
Art. 1/,7. 3ithin thirty days after the court has issued
an order for the distribution of the estate in accordance with
the 4ules of #ourt, the heirs, devisees and legatees shall
signify to the court having 5urisdiction whether they accept or
repudiate the inheritance.
&f they do not do so within that time, they are deemed to
have accepted the inheritance. (n)
U(on %. De- Ro(ario2 + P6i-. ,!/
(rticle --- provides that the right to the succession is
transmitted from the moment of the death of the decedent.
(ccordingly, :son holds that the inheritance pertains to the
heirs from the moment of the death of the ancestor as
completely as if the ancestor had executed and delivered to
the heirs a deed for the same before his death. This
transmission ta$es place by operation of law.
Artic-e ,! provides indeed that rights which are declared
for the 'rst time shall have retroactive e%ect even though the
event which gave rise to them may have occurred under the
former legislation, but this is so only when the new rights do
not pre5udice any vested or acquired right of the same origin.
(s already stated in the early part of this decision, the right of
ownership of =aria :son over the lands in question became
vested in *"C, upon the death of her late husband and this is
so because of the imperative provision of the law which
commands that the rights to succession are transmitted from
the moment of death ((rticle ,-, old #ivil #ode). The new
right recogni7ed by the new #ivil #ode in favor of the
illegitimate children of the deceased cannot, therefore, be
asserted to the impairment of the vested right of =aria :son
over the lands in dispute.
De "or;a %. De "or;a2 40 SCRA ,77
The right to the inheritance is transferred to the heirs
precisely at the moment of the death of the decedent. 1rom
such time, the heirs are deemed to be the owners of the
same. ?e .or5a con'rms that from the moment of death of the
decedent, the heirs begin to en5oy all the attributes of
ownership, including the right to dispose (jus disponendi). ?e
.or5a holds that the pendency of the probate proceeding is no
bar to the exercise of such proprietary rights, since ownership
over the hereditary estate has vested in the heirs from the
time of the death of the testator.
"oni--a %. "arcena2 71 SCRA 4+1
The transmission of the hereditary estate from the decedent
to the heirs ta$es place from the moment of the death of the
decedent. ( prior 5udicial declaration of heirship is not
necessary to perfect the transmission. .onilla holds that
claims to or rights over property which were initiated by the
decedent during his lifetime by appropriate court proceedings
are not extinguished by his death. These claims or rights over
property are transmitted to his heirs upon his death.
Cr*7 %. Cr*72 G.R. No. 17!+2 Septe'1er 12 /1/
The question as to whether an action survives or not depends
on the nature of the action and the damage sued for. &n the
causes of action which survive, the wrong complained KofL
a%ects primarily and principally property and property rights,
the in5uries to the person being merely incidental, while in the
causes of action which do not survive, the in5ury complained
of is to the person, the property and rights of property
a%ected being incidental. ( 0etition for ?eclaration of 2ullity
of ?eed of Sale of 4eal 0roperty is one relating to property
and property rights, and therefore, survives the death of the
petitioner.
1rom the moment of the death of the decedent, the heirs
become the absolute owners of his property, sub5ect to the
rights and obligations of the decedent, and they cannot be
deprived of their rights thereto except by the methods
provided for by law. The moment of death is the determining
factor when the heirs acquire a de'nite right to the
inheritance whether such right be pure or contingent. The
right of the heirs to the property of the deceased vests in
them even before 5udicial declaration of their being heirs in
the testate or intestate proceedings.
"o*$6 %. @ode(to2 ?an .2 1+,42 +4 P6i-.
"orro'eo>5errera %. "orro'eo2 1, SCRA 171
The purported E3aiver of ;ereditary 4ightsE cannot be
considered to be e%ective. 1or a waiver to exist, three
elements are essentialB (*) the existence of a right< (+) the
$nowledge of the existence thereof< and (8) an intention to
relinquish such right. The intention to waive a right or
advantage must be shown clearly and convincingly, and when
the only proof of intention rests in what a party does, his act
should be so manifestly consistent with, and indicative of an
intent to, voluntarily relinquish the particular right or
advantage that no other reasonable explanation of his
conduct is possible
CONVERSIONB The trial court had 5urisdiction to pass upon
the validity of the waiver agreement. &t must be noted that in
Special 0roceedings 2o. "*F4 the lower court disallowed the
probate of the will and declared it as fa$e. :pon appeal, this
#ourt a)rmed the decision of the lower court. Subsequently,
several parties came before the lower court 'ling claims or
petitions alleging themselves as heirs of the intestate estate
of >ito .orromeo. 3e see no impediment to the trial court in
exercising 5urisdiction and trying the said claims or petitions.
=oreover, the 5urisdiction of the trial court extends to matters
incidental and collateral to the exercise of its recogni7ed
powers in handling the settlement of the estate.

G. Cind( o& S*cce((ion
Art. 77.. Succession may beB (*) Testamentary< (+) legal
or intestate< or (8) =ixed. (n)
1. De(ta'entar:
Art. 77+. Testamentary succession is that which results
from the designation of an heir, made in a will executed in the
form prescribed by law. (n)
. Le$a- or inte(tate
Art. +0/. /egal or intestate succession ta$es placeB
(*) &f a person dies without a will, or with a void will, or
one which has subsequently lost its validity<
(+) 3hen the will does not institute an heir to, or dispose
of all the property belonging to the testator. &n such case,
legal succession shall ta$e place only with respect to the
property of which the testator has not disposed<
(8) &f the suspensive condition attached to the institution
of heir does not happen or is not ful'lled, or if the heir dies
before the testator, or repudiates the inheritance, there being
no substitution, and no right of accretion ta$es place<
(C) 3hen the heir instituted is incapable of succeeding,
except in cases provided in this #ode. ("*+a)
!. @i)ed
Art. 7./. =ixed succession is that e%ected partly by will
and partly by operation of law. (n)
4. Contract*a-
Art. 1!/. The future spouses may give each other in
their marriage settlements as much as oneF'fth of their
present property, and with respect to their future property,
only in the event of death, to the extent laid down by the
provisions of this #ode referring to testamentary succession.
(*88*a)
Art. 1!47. (ll things which are not outside the
commerce of men, including future things, may be the ob5ect
of a contract. (ll rights which are not intransmissible may also
be the ob5ect of contracts.
2o contract may be entered into upon future inheritance
except in cases expressly authori7ed by law.
(ll services which are not contrary to law, morals, good
customs, public order or public policy may li$ewise be the
ob5ect of a contract. (*+-*a)
Art. 7,. The provisions of (rticle -,! notwithstanding,
no person may give or receive, by way of donation, more than
he may give or receive by will.
The donation shall be ino)cious in all that it may exceed
this limitation. (8)
4C2 Art. .4. &f the future spouses agree upon a regime
other than the absolute community of property, they cannot
donate to each other in their marriage settlements more than
oneF'fth of their present property. (ny excess shall be
considered void.
?onations of future property shall be governed by the
provisions on testamentary succession and the formalities of
wills. (*8!a)
,. Co'p*-(or:
DESDA@ENDARE SUCCESSION

II. WILLS
A. Defnition
Art. 7.!. ( will is an act whereby a person is permitted,
with the formalities prescribed by law, to control to a certain
degree the disposition of this estate, to ta$e e%ect after his
death. (-a)
". C6aracteri(tic(
Art. 7.!. ( will is an act whereby a person is permitted,
with the formalities prescribed by law, to control to a certain
degree the disposition of this estate, to ta$e e%ect after his
death. (-a)

Art. .!+. The will shall be disallowed in any of the
following casesB
(*) &f the formalities required by law have not been
complied with<
(+) &f the testator was insane, or otherwise mentally
incapable of ma$ing a will, at the time of its execution<
(8) &f it was executed through force or under duress, or
the inDuence of fear, or threats< >O/:2T(4@
(C) &f it was procured by undue and improper pressure
and inDuence, on the part of the bene'ciary or of some other
person<
(,) &f the signature of the testator was procured by fraud<
() &f the testator acted by mista$e or did not intend that
the instrument he signed should be his will at the time of
a)xing his signature thereto. (n)
Art. ... ( will may be revo$ed by the testator at any
time before his death. (ny waiver or restriction of this right is
void. (-8-a)
Art. 7+0. (ll persons who are not expressly prohibited
by law may ma$e a will. (+)
Art. 7+7. 0ersons of either sex under eighteen years of
age cannot ma$e a will. (n)
Art. 7+.. &n order to ma$e a will it is essential that the
testator be of sound mind at the time of its execution. (n)
Art. 777. The rights to the succession are transmitted
from the moment of the death of the decedent. (,-a)
Art. .1.. Two or more persons cannot ma$e a will
5ointly, or in the same instrument, either for their reciprocal
bene't or for the bene't of a third person. (")
Art. 7.4. The ma$ing of a will is a strictly personal act<
it cannot be left in whole or in part of the discretion of a third
person, or accomplished through the instrumentality of an
agent or attorney. (-!a)
Art. 7.,. The duration or e)cacy of the designation of
heirs, devisees or legatees, or the determination of the
portions which they are to ta$e, when referred to by name,
cannot be left to the discretion of a third person. (-!a)
Art. 7.0. The testator may entrust to a third person the
distribution of speci'c property or sums of money that he may
leave in general to speci'ed classes or causes, and also the
designation of the persons, institutions or establishments to
which such property or sums are to be given or applied.
(-*a)
Art. 7.7. The testator may not ma$e a testamentary
disposition in such manner that another person has to
determine whether or not it is to be operative. (n)
C. Interpretation o& Wi--(
Art. 7... &f a testamentary disposition admits of di%erent
interpretations, in case of doubt, that interpretation by which
the disposition is to be operative shall be preferred. (n)
Art. 7.+. 3hen there is an imperfect description, or
when no person or property exactly answers the description,
mista$es and omissions must be corrected, if the error
appears from the context of the will or from extrinsic
evidence, excluding the oral declarations of the testator as to
his intention< and when an uncertainty arises upon the face of
the will, as to the application of any of its provisions, the
testator9s intention is to be ascertained from the words of the
will, ta$ing into consideration the circumstances under which
it was made, excluding such oral declarations. (n)
Art. 7+/. The words of a will are to be ta$en in their
ordinary and grammatical sense, unless a clear intention to
use them in another sense can be gathered, and that other
can be ascertained.
Technical words in a will are to be ta$en in their technical
sense, unless the context clearly indicates a contrary
intention, or unless it satisfactorily appears that he was
unacquainted with such technical sense. (-,a)
Art. 7+1. The words of a will are to receive an
interpretation which will give to every expression some e%ect,
rather than one which will render any of the expressions
inoperative< and of two modes of interpreting a will, that is to
be preferred which will prevent intestacy. (n)
Art. 7+. The invalidity of one of several dispositions
contained in a will does not result in the invalidity of the other
dispositions, unless it is to be presumed that the testator
would not have made such other dispositions if the 'rst
invalid disposition had not been made. (n)
Art. 7+!. 0roperty acquired after the ma$ing of a will
shall only pass thereby, as if the testator had possessed it at
the time of ma$ing the will, should it expressly appear by the
will that such was his intention. (n)
Art. 7+4. Avery devise or legacy shall cover all the
interest which the testator could device or bequeath in the
property disposed of, unless it clearly appears from the will
that he intended to convey a less interest. (n)
Art. +!/. The legacy or devise of a thing belonging to
another person is void, if the testator erroneously believed
that the thing pertained to him. .ut if the thing bequeathed,
though not belonging to the testator when he made the will,
afterwards becomes his, by whatever title, the disposition
shall ta$e e%ect. (6+a)
So--a %. A(c*enta2 4+ P6i-. !!!
&n order to determine the testator9s intention, the court should
place itself as near as possible in his position, and hence,
where the language of the will is ambiguous or doubtful,
should ta$e into consideration the situation of the testator and
the facts and circumstances surrounding him at the time the
will executed. 3here the testator9s intention is manifest from
the context of the will and surrounding circumstances, but is
obscured by inapt and inaccurate modes of expression, the
language will be subordinated to the intention, and in order to
give e%ect to such intention, as far as possible, the court may
depart from the strict wording and read word or phrase in a
sense di%erent from that which is ordinarily attributed to it,
and for such purpose may mold or change the language of the
will, such as restricting its application or supplying omitted
words or phrases.
III. DESDA@ENDARE CAPACIDE AND INDEND
A. W6o 'a: 'aFe a #i--<
Art. 7+0. (ll persons who are not expressly prohibited by
law may ma$e a will. (+)
Art. 7+7. 0ersons of either sex under eighteen years of
age cannot ma$e a will. (n)
Art. 7+.. &n order to ma$e a will it is essential that the
testator be of sound mind at the time of its execution. (n)
Art. 7++. To be of sound mind, it is not necessary that
the testator be in full possession of all his reasoning faculties,
or that his mind be wholly unbro$en, unimpaired, or
unshattered by disease, in5ury or other cause.
&t shall be su)cient if the testator was able at the time of
ma$ing the will to $now the nature of the estate to be
disposed of, the proper ob5ects of his bounty, and the
character of the testamentary act. (n)
Art. .//. The law presumes that every person is of
sound mind, in the absence of proof to the contrary.
The burden of proof that the testator was not of sound
mind at the time of ma$ing his dispositions is on the person
who opposes the probate of the will< .:T if the testator, one
month, or less, before ma$ing his will was publicly $nown to
be insane, the person who maintains the validity of the will
must prove that the testator made it during a lucid interval.
(n)
Art. ./1. Supervening incapacity does not invalidate an
e%ective will, nor is the will of an incapable validated by the
supervening of capacity. (n)
Art. ./. ( married woman may ma$e a will without the
consent of her husband, and without the authority of the
court. (n)
Art. ./!. ( married woman may dispose by will of all her
separate property as well as her share of the con5ugal
partnership or absolute community property. (n)
". S*per%enin$ incapacit:
Art. ./1. Supervening incapacity does not invalidate an
e%ective will, nor is the will of an incapable validated by the
supervening of capacity. (n)
"a-ta7ar %. La)a2 G.R. No. 1744.+2 Apri- 112 /1
&t is incumbent upon those who oppose the probate of a will to
clearly establish that the decedent was not of sound and
disposing mind at the time of the execution of said will.
Otherwise, the state is dutyFbound to give full e%ect to the
wishes of the testator to distribute his estate in the manner
provided in his will so long as it is legally tenable.
The state of being forgetful does not necessarily ma$e a
person mentally unsound so as to render him un't to execute
a 3ill. 1orgetfulness is not equivalent to being of unsound
mind.
(n essential element of the validity of the 3ill is the
willingness of the testator or testatrix to execute the
document that will distribute hisMher earthly possessions upon
hisMher death.
The very existence of the 3ill is in itself prima facie proof that
the supposed testatrix has willed that her estate be
distributed in the manner therein provided, and it is
incumbent upon the state that, if legally tenable, such desire
be given full e%ect independent of the attitude of the parties
a%ected thereby.

IV. SOLE@NIDIES O4 WILLS

A. Cind( o& Wi--(
Art. ./4. Avery will must be in writing and executed in a
language or dialect $nown to the testator. (n)
Art. .1/. ( person may execute a holographic will which
must be entirely written, dated, and signed by the hand of the
testator himself. &t is sub5ect to no other form, and may be
made in or out of the 0hilippines, and need not be witnessed.
(-6, 66a)
". Notaria- Wi--(
1. Genera- reA*ire'ent(
Art. ./4. Avery will must be in writing and executed in a
language or dialect $nown to the testator. (n)

S*ro7a %. 5onrado2 11/ SCRA !..
Avery will must be &2 34&T&2N and AOA#:TA? &2 ( /(2N:(NA
O4 ?&(/A#T P2O32 to the TAST(TO4. &n this case, the
testatrix was proved to be illiterate. ;owever, her alleged
notarial will was written in Anglish, which in the opening
paragraph of the will, was supposedly a language $nown to
her. The contradiction in the concluding paragraph of the will
clearly indicated the nullity of the purported will.
. Specifc reA*ire'ent(.
Art. ./,. Avery will, other than a holographic will, must
be S:.S#4&.A? at the end thereof by the testator himself or
by the testator9s name written by some other person in his
presence, and by his express direction, and attested and
subscribed by three or more credible witnesses in the
presence of the testator and of one another.
The testator or the person requested by him to write his
name and the instrumental witnesses of the will, shall also
sign, as aforesaid, each and every page thereof, except the
last, on the left margin, and all the pages shall be numbered
correlatively in letters placed on the upper part of each page.
The (TTAST(T&O2 shall state the number of pages used
upon which the will is written, and the fact that the testator
signed the will and every page thereof, or caused some other
person to write his name, under his express direction, in the
presence of the instrumental witnesses, and that the latter
witnessed and signed the will and all the pages thereof in the
presence of the testator and of one another.
&f the attestation clause is in a language not $nown to the
witnesses, it shall be interpreted to them. (n)
Art. ./0. Avery will must be ac$nowledged before a
notary public by the testator and the witnesses. The notary
public shall not be required to retain a copy of the will, or 'le
another with the O)ce of the #ler$ of #ourt. (n)
Garcia %. Lac*e(ta2 +/ P6i-. 4.+
3here it appears that the TAST(TO4 caused another person
to write his name in the will, such fact must be stated in the
attestation clause. ( failure to ma$e such a recital is a fatal
defect. That the testator a)xed the sign of the cross after his
name written by another person is not su)cient indication
that the testator in fact signed the will, absent a clear showing
that the sign of the cross is the customary signature of the
testator, or at the very least, one of the ways by which the
testator signed his name.
"a-onan %. A1e--ana2 1/+ P6i-. !,.
(rticle 6!, prescribes the manner in which the will must be
signed by the testator< i.e., Esubscribed at the end thereof by
the testator himself, or by the testator9s name written by
some other person in his presence and by his express
direction. The requirement is =(2?(TO4@ and failure to
comply therewith is a fatal defect. &t is not important that the
person to whom the function of writing the testator9s name
indicates or writes his own name. .ut it is imperative that this
individual should write the name of the testator. .alonan
gives two alternate ways of complying with the statutory
requirement.
Nera %. Ri'ando2 1. P6i-. 4,/
(rticle 6!, requires that the will must be signed by the
testator and the witnesses in the presence of one another.
TAST O1 04ASA2#AB &t is not essential that the testator and
the witnesses should loo$ at the paper purporting to be the
will of the testator at the time each of them a)x their
signatures. &t is su)cient that each of them be 0;@S&#(//@
04ASA2T at the 0/(#A 3;A4A AOA#:T&O2 3&// T(PA 0/(#A
and that they be in such position with respect to each one,
that by merely casting their eyes in the proper direction, they
would have been able to see each one a)x his signature on
the will without any physical obstruction.
?a1oneta %. G*(tio-oB The true test of presence of the
testator and the witnesses in the execution of a will is not
whether they actually saw each other sign, but whether they
might have been seen each other sign, had they chosen to do
so, considering their mental and physical condition and
position with relation to each other at the moment of
inscription of each signature.
Da1oada %. Ro(a-2 11. SCRA 1+,
(rticle 6!, requires that the testator should sign at the end of
the will. This requirement does not apply to the subscribing
witnesses, who may sign in any other part of each page of the
will. The duty of the witnesses to subscribe is substantially
complied with by any such signature. The failure of the
attestation clause to indicate the number of pages upon which
the will is written is, as a rule, a fatal defect. ;owever, where
the notarial ac$nowledgement does indicate the number of
pages of the will, and the same conforms to an actual count of
the pages, the de'ciency is cured ((rt. 6!"B substantial
compliance).
Ec6a%e7 %. Do7en Con(tr*ction2 G.R. No. 1++10 8/1/9
Aven granting that the (c$nowledgment embodies what the
attestation clause requires, an attestation clause and an
ac$nowledgment cannot be merged in one statement.
The requirements of attestation and ac$nowledgment are
embodied in two separate provisions of the #ivil #ode ((rticles
6!, and 6!, respectively) indicates that the law
contemplates two distinct acts that serve di%erent purposes.
(n ACCNOWLEDG@END is made by one executing a deed,
declaring before a competent o)cer or court that the deed or
act is his own. On the other hand, the ADDESDADION of a will
refers to the act of the instrumental witnesses themselves
who certify to the execution of the instrument before them
and to the manner of its execution.
In re Lope7 %. Lope72 G.R. No. 1.++.4 8/19
The attestation must state the number of pages used upon
which the will is written. The purpose of the law is to
safeguard against possible interpolation or omission of one or
some of its pages and prevent any increase or decrease in the
pages.
The statement in the (c$nowledgment portion of the sub5ect
last will and testament that it Econsists of - pages including
the page on which the rati'cation and ac$nowledgment are
writtenE cannot be deemed substantial compliance. The will
actually consists of 6 pages including its ac$nowledgment
which discrepancy cannot be explained by mere examination
of the will itself but through the presentation of evidence
aliunde. On this score is the comment of Qustice Q.../. 4eyes
regarding the APPLICADION o& Art. ./+, to witB The rule
must be limited to disregarding those defects that can be
supplied by an examination of the will itselfB whether all the
pages are consecutively numbered< whether the signatures
appear in each and every page< whether the subscribing
witnesses are three or the will was notari7ed. (ll these are
facts that the will itself can reveal, and defects or even
omissions concerning them in the attestation clause can be
safely disregarded. .ut the total number of pages, and
whether all persons required to sign did so in the presence of
each other must substantially appear in the attestation
clause, being the only chec$ against per5ury in the probate
proceedings.
Ica(iano %. Ica(iano2 11 SCRA 4
(rticle 6!, requires that each of the subscribing witnesses
should sign each and every page of the will on the left margin.
This requirement is, as a rule, mandatory and a failure to
comply therewith is a fatal defect. &casiano holds that the
failure of a witness to sign one of the pages of the will through
inadvertence or oversight (there being no bad faith or
fraudulent intent) can be cured by the presentation of a
carbon duplicate of the will which contains all the required
signatures. This ruling is based on the principle of liberal
interpretation of the statutory requirements for the formal
validity of the will, provided that the need to safeguard the
genuineness and authenticity of the will is not compromised.
&t is important, for the proper understanding of this case, to
di%erentiate a duplicate copy of a document from a duplicateF
original thereof.
Cr*7 %. Vi--a(or2 ,4 SCRA2 !1
(rticle 6! requires that the testator and the three witnesses
must ac$nowledge the will before a notary public. #ru7
involves a situation where one of the three witnesses to the
will was the same person who notari7ed the same. .y reason
thereof, the Supreme #ourt disallowed the will for the reasons
stated hereunder. 3hile the proponent of the will relied on
(merican decisions which permit a notary public to be a
witness to an instrument notari7ed by him, the Supreme #ourt
re5ected the application of the foregoing decisions to the case
at bar. &t would seem that the strongest argument against the
proponent is the fact that the witnesses themselves are
required by law to ac$nowledge the document. 1or which
reason, it is obvious that a witness cannot simultaneously be
the notary public before whom the will shall be ac$nowledged.
( di%erent result may be expected if the witnesses were not
required by law to ac$nowledge the document.
Ga1*can %. @anta2 +, SCRA 7,
Thus, it was held that the documentary stamp may be a)xed
at the time the taxable document is presented in evidence. &f
the promissory note does not bear a documentary stamp, the
court should have allowed plainti%9s tender of a stamp to
supply the de'ciency. The lac$ of the documentary stamp on
a document does not invalidate such document.
?a%e--ana %. Lede('a2 +7 P6i-. ,.
The subsequent signing and sealing by the notary of his
certi'cation that the testament was duly ac$nowledged by the
participants therein is not part of the ac$nowledgment itself
nor of the testamentary act. ;ence, their separate execution
out of the presence of the testatrix and her witnesses cannot
be said to violate the rule that testaments should be
completed without interruption

Witne((e( to a Wi--
a. W6o are co'petent<
Art. ./. (ny person of sound mind and of the age of
eighteen years or more, and not blind, deaf or dumb, and able
to read and write, may be a witness to the execution of a will
mentioned in (rticle 6!, of this #ode. (n)
Art. .1. The following are disquali'ed from being
witnesses to a willB
(*) (ny person not domiciled in the 0hilippines<
(+) Those who have been convicted of falsi'cation of a
document, per5ury or false testimony. (n)
Art. .4. ( mere charge on the estate of the testator for
the payment of debts due at the time of the testator9s death
does not prevent his creditors from being competent
witnesses to his will. (n)
Gon7a-e( %. CA2 +/ SCRA 1.!
(rticle 6!, requires the notarial will to be attested by at least
three credible witnesses. (rticle 6+! prescribes the
quali'cations of a witness, while (rticle 6+* enumerates the
disquali'cations. Thus, an issue arises as to whether or not a
witness competent under (rticles 6+! and 6+* is necessarily
credible as required by (rticle 6!,. Non7ales ma$es a
distinction between a competent witness and a credible
witness. 1urthermore, Non7ales stresses that #O=0ATA2#A
may be proved or inferred< whereas, #4A?&.&/&T@, which is a
matter to be determined by the court, is presumed unless
evidence to the contrary is presented.
1. S*per%enin$ inco'petenc:
Art. .. &f the witnesses attesting the execution of a
will are competent at the time of attesting, their becoming
subsequently incompetent shall not prevent the allowance of
the will. (n)
c. Co'petenc: o& intere(ted #itne((.
Art. .!. &f a person attests the execution of a will, to
whom or to whose spouse, or parent, or child, a devise or
legacy is given by such will, such devise or legacy shall, so far
only as concerns such person, or spouse, or parent, or child of
such person, or any one claiming under such person or
spouse, or parent, or child, be void, unless there are three
other competent witnesses to such will. ;owever, such person
so attesting shall be admitted as a witness as if such devise or
legacy had not been made or given. (n)
!. Specia- ReA*ire'ent(B Dea&2 Dea&>'*te G "-ind
De(tator(
Art. ./7. &f the testator be deaf, or a deafFmute, he
must personally read the will, if able to do so< otherwise, he
shall designate two persons to read it and communicate to
him, in some practicable manner, the contents thereof. (n)
Art. ./.. &f the testator is blind, the will shall be read to
him twice< once, by one of the subscribing witnesses, and
again, by the notary public before whom the will is
ac$nowledged. (n)
Garcia %. Va(A*e72 ! SCRA 4.+
(rticle 6!6 of the #ivil #ode prescribes an additional formality
in the case of a blind testator. &f a testator9s vision does not
permit him to read the document, even if he can see distant
ob5ect, the testator is deemed blind for the purpose of
requiring the observance of the additional formality
prescribed in (rticle 6!6. &f the testator is blind or incapable
of reading the will (as when he is illiterate) the requirement of
reading must be complied with in order to enable the testator
to ob5ect to provisions which are not in accordance with his
wishes.
04O.(TA 04O#AA?&2NB 3hat was being questioned was the
validity of the conveyance or sale of the properties. The action
for annulment would have to be underta$en on behalf of the
estate by the special administratrix, a%ecting as it does the
property or rights of the deceased. The rule is that, only
where there is no special proceeding for the settlement of the
estate of the deceased may the /AN(/ ;A&4S commence an
action arising out of a right belonging to their ancestor.
There is no doubt that to settle the question of the due
execution and validity of the deed of sale, an ordinary and
separate action would have to be instituted, the matter not
falling within the competence of the probate court.
#onsidering the facts then before it, i.e., the alleged deed of
sale having been executed by Nliceria del 4osario on *!
Qanuary *"*, when she was already practically blind< and
that the consideration of 08!,!!!.!! seems to be
unconscionably small for properties with a total assessed
value of 088C,!,!.!!, there was li$elihood that a case for
annulment might indeed be 'led against the estate or heirs of
(lfonso 0recilla and the administratrix, being the widow and
heir of the alleged transferee, cannot be expected to sue
herself in an action to recover property that may turn out to
belong to the estate.

4. S*1(tantia- Co'p-iance
Art. ./+. &n the absence of bad faith, forgery, or fraud, or
undue and improper pressure and inDuence, defects and
imperfections in the form of attestation or in the language
used therein shall not render the will invalid if it is proved that
the will was in fact executed and attested in substantial
compliance with all the requirements of (rticle 6!,. (n)
C. 5o-o$rap6ic Wi--(
1. Genera- reA*ire'ent(
Art. ./4. Avery will must be in writing and executed in a
language or dialect $nown to the testator. (n)
. Specifc reA*ire'ent(
Art. .1/. ( person may execute a holographic will which
must be entirely written, dated, and signed by the hand of the
testator himself. &t is sub5ect to no other form, and may be
made in or out of the 0hilippines, and need not be witnessed.
(-6, 66a)
Art. .1. &n holographic wills, the dispositions of the
testator written below his signature must be dated and signed
by him in order to ma$e them valid as testamentary
dispositions. (n)
Art. .1!. 3hen a number of dispositions appearing in a
holographic will are signed without being dated, and the last
disposition has a signature and a date, such date validates the
dispositions preceding it, whatever be the time of prior
dispositions. (n)
Art. .14. &n case of any insertion, cancellation, erasure
or alteration in a holographic will, the testator must
authenticate the same by his full signature. (n)
Ro)a( %. De ?e(*(2 1!4 SCRA 4,
(rticle 6*! of the #ivil #ode requires, among others, that a
holographic will be dated. 3hile a complete date is generally
required, an incomplete date which sets forth only the month
and the year of execution, is not a fatal defect if it can be
shown that there was no bad faith, fraud, and undue and
improper inDuence and pressure. 0robate is further 5usti'ed if
the genuineness of the handwriting of the testator is proved,
or otherwise admitted by the parties, and the only ground for
opposing probate is the technicality resulting from an
incomplete date.
Ca-a# %. Re-o%a2 1! SCRA !7
(rticle 6*C requires the authentication of any alteration in a
holographic will. The failure to authenticate such alterations
results in the invalidity of the desired change. ;owever,
where the testator canceled the name of the original heir, and
substituted in lieu thereof another name, without the requisite
authentication, the institution of the new heir is inoperative by
reason of a failure to comply with the requirement of (rticle
6*C. Should the nullity of the alteration result in the e%ectivity
of the original dispositionR The court in Palaw ruled in the
negative, stating among other things, that the intention of the
testatrix has become indeterminable.