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G.R. No.

95229 June 9, 1992
CORITO OCAMPO TAYAG, petitioner,
vs.
HON. COURT OF APPEALS and EMILIE AYRIT CUYUGAN, respondent.
REGALAO, J.!
The instant petition seeks to reverse and set aside the decision
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of respondent Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 20222,
entitled Corito !ca"po Ta#a$ vs. %on. Nor&erto C. Ponce, 'ud$e, Re$ional Trial Court of San (ernando, Pa"pan$a and
)"ilde *a#rit Cu#u$an, pro"ul$ated on +a# ,0, ,--0, and its resolution den#in$ petitioner.s "otion for
reconsideration.
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Said decision, no/ &efore us for revie/, dis"issed petitioner.s Petition for Certiorari and Prohi&ition /ith
Preli"inar# 0n1unction on the $round that the denial of the "otion to dis"iss Civil Case No. 2-34 of the court a quo is an
interlocutor# order and cannot &e the su&1ect of the said special civil action, ordinar# appeal in due ti"e &ein$ petitioner.s
re"ed#.
0n said Civil Case No, 2-34, herein private respondent, in her capacit# as "other and le$al $uardian of "inor Chad *.
Cu#u$an, filed on April -, ,-42 a co"plaint deno"inated Clai" for 0nheritance a$ainst herein petitioner as the ad"inistratri5
of the estate of the late Att#. Ricardo !ca"po. The operative alle$ations in said co"plaint are as follo/s6
555 555 555
2. Plaintiff is the "other and le$al $uardian of her "inor son, Chad Cu#u$an, &# the father of the
defendant, the late Att#. Ricardo !ca"po7 and the defendant is the kno/n ad"inistratri5 of the real and
personal properties left &# her deceased father, said Att#. !ca"po, /ho died intestate in An$eles Cit# on
Septe"&er 24, ,-437
3. Plaintiff has &een estran$ed fro" her hus&and, 'ose Cu#u$an, for several #ears no/ and durin$ /hich
ti"e, plaintiff and Att#. Ricardo !ca"po had illicit a"orous relationship /ith each other that, as a
conse8uence thereof, the# &e$ot a child /ho /as christened Chad Cu#u$an in accordance /ith the ardent
desire and &ehest of said Att#. !ca"po7
9. Chad, the son of plaintiff &# the late Att#. Ricardo !ca"po, /ho /as &orn in An$eles Cit# on !cto&er :,
,-40 &ad &een sired, sho/ered /ith e5ceptional affection, fervent love and care &# his putative father for
&ein$ his onl# son as can &e $leaned fro" indu&ita&le letters and docu"ents of the late Att#. !ca"po to
herein plaintiff, e5cerpts fro" so"e of /hich are hereunder reproduced7
. . . ;eep $ood keep faith keep Chad and #ourself for "e alone and for "e all the ti"e.
As 0 have no/ 0 shall save "# heart to #ou and to Chad.
. . . Please take $ood care and pra# to Sto. Ni<o for our sake and for the child sake.
. . . ;eep hi". Take $ood care of hi".
. . . 0." proud that #ou are his "other. . . 0." proud of hi" and #ou. =et "e &less hi" &#
"# na"e and let "e entitle hi" to all /hat 0 a" and /hat 0.ve $ot.
. . . 0 have vo/ed to reco$ni>e hi" and &e "# heir.
. . . %o/ is C%A* and #ou . . .
. . . ?h# should /e not start no/ to o/n hi", 1ointl# a$ainst the /hole /orld. After all
/e love each other and C%A* is the product of our love.
:. The "inor, Chad *. Cu#u$an, althou$h ille$iti"ate is nevertheless entitled to a share in the intestate
estate left &# his deceased father, Att#. Ricardo !ca"po as one of the survivin$ heirs7
@. The deceased Att#. Ricardo !ca"po, at the ti"e of his death /as the o/ner of real and personal
propert#, located in Aa$uio Cit#, An$eles Cit# and in the Province of Pa"pan$a /ith appro5i"ate value of
several "illions of pesos7
2. The estate of the late Att#. !ca"po has not as #et &een inventoried &# the defendant and the inheritance
of the survivin$ heirs includin$ that of said Chad has not like/ise &een ascertained7
4. The onl# kno/n survivin$ heirs of the deceased Att#. Ricardo !ca"po are his children, na"el#6 Corito
!. Ta#a$, Rivina !. Ta#a$, )vita !. (lorendo, (elina !ca"po, and said "inor Chad, for and in /hose
&ehalf this instant co"plaint is filed7
-. Plaintiff has no "eans of livelihood and she onl# depends on the charit# of friends and relatives for the
sustenance of her son, Chad, such that it is ur$ent, necessar# and i"perative that said child &e e5tended
financial support fro" the estate of his putative father, Att#. Ricardo !ca"po7
,0. Several de"ands, ver&al and /ritten, have &een "ade for defendant to $rant Chad.s la/ful inheritance,
&ut despite said de"ands, defendant failed and refused and still fails and refused and still fails and refuses
to satisf# the clai" for inheritance a$ainst the estate of the late Att#. !ca"po7
"
555 555 555
Plaintiff thereafter pra#s, a"on$ others, that 1ud$"ent &e rendered orderin$ defendant to render an inventor# and accountin$ of
the real and personal properties left &# Att#. Ricardo !ca"po7 to deter"ine and deliver the share of the "inor child Chad in the
estate of the deceased7 and to $ive hi" support pendente lite.
Petitioner, as defendant therein, filed her ans/er /ith counterclai" on 'une 3, ,-42, disputin$ the "aterial alle$ations in the
co"plaint. She "aintained &# /a# of affir"ative defenses, inter alia, that the co"plaint states no cause of action7 that the
action is pre"ature7 that the suit as &arred &# prescription7 that respondent Cu#u$an has no le$al and 1udicial personalit# to
&rin$ the suit7 that the lo/er court /as no 1urisdiction over the nature of the action7 and that there is i"proper 1oinder of causes
of action.
#
After the hearin$ of the "otion to dis"iss on the $rounds asserted as affir"ative defenses, the trial court issued the follo/in$
order on !cto&er 20, ,-426
555 555 555
The Court is of the considered opinion that there is a need of further proceedin$s to adduce evidence on
the various clai"s of the parties so as to hear their respective sides
?%)R)(!R), resolution on the preli"inar# hearin$ /hich partakes of the nature of a "otion to dis"iss
re8uirin$ additional evidence is in the "eanti"e held in a&e#ance. The +otion to *is"iss is here&# denied
and the case as set for pre-trial . . .
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?ith the denial of her "otion for reconsideration of said order on Nove"&er ,-, ,-42,
$
petitioner filed on *ece"&er ,0, ,-42 a
petition for certiorari and prohi&ition &efore the Court of Appeals, docketed therein as CA-G.R. SP No. ,39@9, /hich /as
$ranted &# the Si5th *ivision of respondent court on Au$ust 2, ,-4- and en1oined respondent 1ud$e to resolve petitioner.s
"otion pra#in$ for the dis"issal of the co"plaint &ased on the affir"ative defenses /ithin ten B,0C da#s fro" notice thereof.
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0n co"pliance /ith said decision of respondent court, the trial court acted on and thereafter denied the "otion to dis"iss, /hich
had &een pleaded in the affir"ative defenses in Civil Case No. 2-34, in an order dated !cto&er 29, ,-4-, resolvin$ the said
"otion in the follo/in$ "anner6
555 555 555
The Court no/ resolves6
No. ,. The co"plaint sufficientl# sho/s that a cause of action e5ists in favor of the plaintiff. A cause of
action &ein$ the pri"ar# ri$ht to redress a /ron$ B+ar8ue> vs. Dalera, 94 !G :222C, /hich apparentl# on
the face of the co"plaint, plaintiff has a ri$ht to enforce throu$h this case. *efendant.s protestation that
there is no sufficient cause of action is therefore untena&le.
No. 2. The present action. despite the clai" of defendant is not pre"ature. 0t is e5actl# filed in order to
prove filiation, and then reco$nition. To $o a&out the step &# step procedure outlined &# the defendant &#
filin$ one action after another is definitel# violative of the prohi&ition a$ainst splittin$ a cause of action.
No. 3. 0t is not the plaintiff that is no/ &rin$in$ the case &efore the Court. 0t is BherC spurious child that she
represents as natural $uardian that is institutin$ the action.
No. 9. Prescription has not set in if /e consider that a spurious child "a# file an action for reco$nition
/ithin four #ears fro" his attain"ent of "a1orit# BNe/ Civil Code. Art, 24:, No. 2C. ?hether the letters of
the putative father, Att#. !ca"po, is evidence, that should &e in8uired into in a hearin$ on the "erits.
No. :. Several causes of action "a# &e 1oined in one co"plaint as /as done in this case. The defendant.s
clai" that there /as a "is1oinder is untena&le.
No. @. The Court &ein$ a court of $eneral 1urisdiction, and of special 1urisdiction, such as a pro&ate court
has capacit# to entertain a co"plaint such as the one no/ &efore it.
The nature of the case C=A0+ (!R 0N%)R0TANC) does not control the &od# of the co"plaint.
(ro" all the fore$oin$, the Court finds that the co"plaint is sufficient. in for" and su&stance and, therefore,
the "otion to dis"iss could not &e $ranted until after trial on the "erits in /hich it should &e sho/n that the
alle$ations of the co"plaint are unfounded or a special defense to the action e5ists.
?%)R)(!R), the +otion to *is"iss is here&# *)N0)*. &
Petitioner.s "otion for reconsideration of said order /as denied &# the trial court on 'anuar# 30, ,--0.
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As a conse8uence,
another petition for certiorari and prohi&ition /ith preli"inar# in1unction /as filed &# petitioner on +arch ,2, ,--0 /ith
respondent court, docketed as CA-G.R. SP No. 20222, pra#in$ that the orders dated !cto&er 29, ,-4- and 'anuar# 30, ,--0
of the trial court &e annulled and set aside for havin$ &een issued /ith $rave a&use of discretion a"ountin$ to lack or e5cess of
1urisdiction.
!n +a# ,0, ,--0, as earlier stated, respondent court pro"ul$ated its decision dis"issin$ the petition, and like/ise denied
petitioner.s "otion for reconsideration in a resolution dated Septe"&er :, ,--0, hence the present petition for revie/
on certiorari.
0n elevatin$ the case &efore us, petitioner relies on these $rounds6
a. The %onora&le Respondent Court of Appeals dis"issed Petitioner.s Petition for Certiorari and Prohi&ition
in ETT)R *0SR)GAR* !( APP=0CAA=) *)C0S0!NS !( T%0S %!N!RAA=) C!ERT providin$ clear
e5ceptions to the $eneral rule that interlocutor# orders "a# not &e elevated &# /a# of the special civil
action of certiorari7
&. Respondent Court refused to resolve certain issues raised &# Petitioner &efore the Re$ional Trial Court
and &efore Respondent Court of Appeals involvin$ FE)ST0!NS !( SEASTANC) not theretofore
deter"ined &# this %onora&le Court, such as the interpretation and application of Art. 24, of the Civil Code
re8uirin$ 1udicial approval /hen the reco$nition of an ille$iti"ate "inor child does not take place in a
record of &irth or in a /ill6 of Art. ,2:, Par. 2, in relation to Art. ,22, Par. 2 of the (a"il# Code, providin$ for
the prescriptive period /ith respect to the action to esta&lish ille$iti"ate filiation7 and of Art. 24: of the Civil
Code, providin$ for the prescriptive period /ith respect to the action for reco$nition of a natural child7 and
c. Respondent Court has sanctioned a *)PARTER) &# the Re$ional Trial Court fro" the accepted and
usual course of 1udicial proceedin$s.
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Petitioner contends that the action to clai" for inheritance filed &# herein private respondent in &ehalf of the "inor child, Chad
Cu#u$an, is pre"ature and the co"plaint states no cause of action, she su&"its that the reco$nition of the "inor child, either
voluntaril# or &# 1udicial action, &# the alle$ed putative father "ust first &e esta&lished &efore the for"er can invoke his ri$ht to
succeed and participate in the estate of the latter. Petitioner asseverates that since there is no alle$ation of such reco$nition in
the co"plaint deno"inated as Clai" for 0nheritance, then there e5ists no &asis for private respondent.s aforesaid clai" and,
conse8uentl#, the co"plaint should &e dis"issed.
The instant case is si"ilar to the case of Paulino vs. Paulino, et al.,
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/herein the petitioner, as plaintiff, &rou$ht an action
a$ainst the private respondents, as defendants, to co"pel the" to $ive her share of inheritance in the estate of the late +arcos
Paulino, clai"in$ and alle$in$, inter alia, that she is the ille$iti"ate child of the deceased7 that no proceedin$s for the
settle"ent of the deceased.s estate had &een co""enced in court7 and that the defendants had refused and failed to deliver
her share in the estate of the deceased. She accordin$l# pra#ed that the defendants therein &e ordered to deliver her aforesaid
share. The defendants "oved for the dis"issal of her co"plaint on the $round that it states no cause of action and that, even if
it does, the sa"e is &arred &# prescription.
The onl# difference &et/een the aforecited case and the case at &ar is that at the ti"e of the filin$ of the co"plaint therein, the
petitioner in that case had alread# reached the a$e of "a1orit#, /hereas the clai"ant in the present case is still a "inor.
0n Paulino, /e held that an ille$iti"ate child, to &e entitled to support and successional ri$hts fro" the putative or presu"ed
parent, "ust prove his filiation to the latter. ?e also said that it is necessar# to alle$e in the co"plaint that the putative father
had ackno/led$ed and reco$ni>ed the ille$iti"ate child &ecause such ackno/led$"ent is essential to and is the &asis of the
ri$ht to inherit. There &ein$ no alle$ation of such ackno/led$"ent, the action &eco"es one to co"pel reco$nition /hich cannot
&e &rou$ht after the death of the putative father. The ratio decidendi in Paulino, therefore, is not the a&sence of a cause of
action for failure of the petitioner to alle$e the fact of ackno/led$"ent in the co"plaint, &ut the prescription of the action.
Appl#in$ the fore$oin$ principles to the case at &ar, althou$h petitioner contends that the co"plaint filed &# herein private
respondent "erel# alle$es that the "inor Chad Cu#u$an is an ille$iti"ate child of the deceased and is actuall# a clai" for
inheritance, fro" the alle$ations therein the sa"e "a# &e considered as one to co"pel reco$nition. (urther that the t/o causes
of action, one to co"pel reco$nition and the other to clai" inheritance, "a# &e 1oined in one co"plaint is not ne/ in our
1urisprudence.
As earl# as ,-22, /e had occasion to rule thereon in Briz vs. Briz, et
al.,
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/herein /e said6
The 8uestion /hether a person in the position of the present plaintiff can an# event "aintain a co"ple5
action to co"pel reco$nition as a natural child and at the sa"e ti"e to o&tain ulterior relief in the character
of heir, is one /hich, in the opinion of this court "ust &e ans/ered in the affir"ative, provided al/a#s that
the conditions 1ustif#in$ the 1oinder of the t/o distinct causes of action are present in the particular case. 0n,
other /ords, there is no a&solute necessit# re8uirin$ that the action to co"pel ackno/led$"ent should
have &een instituted and prosecuted to a successful conclusion prior to the action in /hich that sa"e
plaintiff seers additional relief in the character of heir. Certainl#, there is nothin$ so peculiar to the action to
co"pel ackno/led$"ent as to re8uire that a rule should &e here applied different fro" that $enerall#
applica&le in other cases. . .
The conclusion a&ove stated, thou$h not heretofore e5plicitl# for"ulated &# this court, is undou&tedl# to
so"e e5tent supported &# our prior decisions. Thus, /e have held in nu"erous cases, and the doctrine
"ust &e considered /ell settled, that a natural child havin$ a ri$ht to co"pel ackno/led$"ent, &ut /ho has
not &een in fact le$all# ackno/led$ed, "a# "aintain partition proceedin$s for the division of the inheritance
a$ainst his co-heirs . . .7 and the sa"e person "a# intervene in proceedin$s for the distri&ution of the
estate of his deceased natural father, or "other . . . 0n neither of these situations has it &een thou$ht
necessar# for the plaintiff to sho/ a prior decree co"pellin$ ackno/led$"ent. The o&vious reason is that
in partition suits and distri&ution proceedin$s the other persons /ho "i$ht take &# inheritance are &efore
the court7 and the declaration of heirship is appropriate to such proceedin$s.
The ne5t 8uestion to &e resolved is /hether the action to co"pel reco$nition has prescri&ed.
Petitioner ar$ues that assu"in$ arguendo that the action is one to co"pel reco$nition, private respondent.s cause of action has
prescri&ed for the reason that since filiation is sou$ht to &e proved &# "eans of a private hand/ritten instru"ent si$ned &# the
parent concerned, then under para$raph 2, Article ,2: of the (a"il# Code, the action to esta&lish filiation of the ille$iti"ate
"inor child "ust &e &rou$ht durin$ the lifeti"e of the alle$ed putative father. 0n the case at &ar, considerin$ that the co"plaint
/as filed after the death of the alle$ed parent, the action has prescri&ed and this is another $round for the dis"issal of the
co"plaint. Petitioner theori>es that Article 24: of the Civil Code is not applica&le to the case at &ar and, instead, para$raph 2,
Article ,2: of the (a"il# Code should &e $iven retroactive effect. The theor# is pre"ised on the supposition that the latter
provision of la/ &ein$ "erel# procedural in nature, no vested ri$hts are created, hence it can &e "ade to appl# retroactivel#.
Article 24: of the Civil Code provides6
Art. 24:. The action for the reco$nition of natural children "a# &e &rou$ht onl# durin$ the lifeti"e of the
presu"ed parents, e5cept in the follo/in$ cases6
B,C 0f the father or "other died durin$ the "inorit# of the child, in /hich case the latter "a# file the action
&efore the e5piration of four #ears fro" the attain"ent of his "a1orit#7
555 555 555
!n the other hand, Article ,2: of the (a"il# Code reads6
Art. ,2:. 0lle$iti"ate children "a# esta&lish their ille$iti"ate filiation in the sa"e /a# and on the sa"e
evidence as le$iti"ate children.
The action "ust &e &rou$ht /ithin the sa"e period specified in Article ,23, e5cept /hen the action is
&ased on the second para$raph of Article ,22, in /hich case the action "a# &e &rou$ht durin$ the lifeti"e
of the alle$ed parent.
Ender the last-8uoted provision of la/, therefore, if the action is &ased on the record of &irth of the child, a final 1ud$"ent, or an
ad"ission &# the parent of the child.s filiation in a pu&lic docu"ent or in a private hand/ritten si$ned instru"ent, then the action
"a# &e &rou$ht durin$ the lifeti"e of the child. %o/ever, if the action is &ased on the open and continuous possession &# the
child of the status of an ille$iti"ate child, or on other evidence allo/ed &# the Rules of Court and special la/s, the vie/ has
&een e5pressed that the action "ust &e &rou$ht durin$ the lifeti"e of the alle$ed parent.
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Petitioner su&"its that Article ,2: of the (a"il# Code applies in /hich case the co"plaint should have &een filed durin$ the
lifeti"e of the putative father, failin$ /hich the sa"e "ust &e dis"issed on the $round of prescription. Private respondent,
ho/ever, insists that Article 24: of the Civil Code is controllin$ and, since the alle$ed parent died durin$ the "inorit# of the
child, the action for filiation "a# &e filed /ithin four #ears fro" the attain"ent of "a1orit# of the "inor child.
Article 2:@ of the (a"il# Code states that GtHhis Code shall have retroactive effect insofar as it does not pre1udice or i"pair
vested or ac8uired ri$hts in accordance /ith the Civil Code or other la/s. 0t &eco"es essential, therefore, to deter"ine
/hether the ri$ht of the "inor child to file an action for reco$nition is a vested ri$ht or not.
Ender the circu"stances o&tainin$ in the case at &ar, /e hold that the ri$ht of action of the "inor child &as &een vested &# the
filin$ of the co"plaint in court under the re$i"e of the Civil Code and prior to the effectivit# of the (a"il# Code.
1#
?e herein
adopt our rulin$ in the recent case of Republic of the Philippines vs. Court of Appeals, et al.
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/here /e held that the fact of
filin$ of the petition alread# vested in the petitioner her ri$ht to file it and to have the sa"e proceed to final ad1udication in
accordance /ith the la/ in force at the ti"e, and such ri$ht can no lon$er &e pre1udiced or i"paired &# the enact"ent of a ne/
la/.
)ven assu"in$ ex gratia argumenti that the provision of the (a"il# Code in 8uestion is procedural in nature, the rule that a
statutor# chan$e in "atters of procedure "a# affect pendin$ actions and proceedin$s, unless the lan$ua$e of the act e5cludes
the" fro" its operation, is not so pervasive that it "a# &e used to validate or invalidate proceedin$s taken &efore it $oes into
effective, since procedure "ust &e $overned &# the la/ re$ulatin$ it at the ti"e the 8uestion of procedure arises especiall#
/here vested ri$hts "a# &e pre1udiced. Accordin$l#, Article ,2: of the (a"il# Code finds no proper application to the instant
case since it /ill inelucta&l# affect adversel# a ri$ht of private respondent and, conse8uentiall#, of the "ind child she
represents, &oth of /hich have &een vested /ith the filin$ of the co"plaint in court. The trial court is therefore, correct in
appl#in$ the provisions of Article 24: of the Civil Code and in holdin$ that private respondent.s cause of action has not #et
prescri&ed.
(inall#, /e confor" /ith the holdin$ of the Court of Appeals that the 8uestioned order of the court &elo/ den#in$ the "otion to
dis"iss is interlocutor# and cannot &e the su&1ect of a petition for certiorari. The e5ceptions to this rule invoked &# petitioner
and alle$edl# o&tainin$ in the case at &ar, are o&viousl# not present and "a# not &e relied upon.
?%)R)(!R), the petition at &ar is *)N0)* and the assailed decision and resolution of respondent Court of Appeals are
here&# A((0R+)* in toto.
S! !R*)R)*.
ARNEL L. AGUSTIN, petitioner, vs. HON. COURT OF APPEALS AN MINOR MARTIN JOSE PROLLAMANTE,
REPRESENTE (Y HIS MOTHER)GUARIAN FE ANGELA PROLLAMANTE, respondents.
E C I S I O N
CORONA, J.!
At issue in this petition for certiorari
G,H
is /hether or not the Court of Appeals BCAC $ravel# erred in e5ercisin$ its
discretion, a"ountin$ to lack or e5cess of 1urisdiction, in issuin$ a decision
G2H
and resolution
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upholdin$ the resolution and order
of the trial court,
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/hich denied petitionerIs "otion to dis"iss private respondentsI co"plaint for support and directed the
parties to su&"it the"selves to deo5#ri&onucleic acid B*NAC paternit# testin$.
Respondents (e An$ela and her son +artin Prolla"ante sued +artinIs alle$ed &iolo$ical father, petitioner Arnel =.
A$ustin, for support and support pendente lite &efore the Re$ional Trial Court BRTCC of Fue>on Cit#, Aranch ,0@.
G:H
0n their co"plaint, respondents alle$ed that Arnel courted (e in ,--2, after /hich the# entered into an inti"ate
relationship. Arnel supposedl# i"pre$nated (e on her 39
th
&irthda# on Nove"&er ,0, ,---. *espite ArnelIs insistence on
a&ortion, (e decided other/ise and $ave &irth to their child out of /edlock, +artin, on Au$ust ,,, 2000 at the Capitol +edical
%ospital in Fue>on Cit#. The &a&#Is &irth certificate /as purportedl# si$ned &# Arnel as the father. Arnel shouldered the pre-
natal and hospital e5penses &ut later refused (eIs repeated re8uests for +artinIs support despite his ade8uate financial
capacit# and even su$$ested to have the child co""itted for adoption. Arnel also denied havin$ fathered the child.
!n 'anuar# ,-, 200,, /hile (e /as carr#in$ five-"onth old +artin at the Capitol %ills Golf and Countr# Clu& parkin$ lot,
Arnel sped off in his van, /ith the open car door hittin$ (eIs le$. This incident /as reported to the police. 0n 'ul# 200,, (e /as
dia$nosed /ith leuke"ia and has, since then, &een under$oin$ che"otherap#. !n +arch :, 2002, (e and +artin sued Arnel for
support.
G@H
0n his a"ended ans/er, Arnel denied havin$ sired +artin &ecause his affair and inti"ac# /ith (e had alle$edl# ended in
,--4, lon$ &efore +artinIs conception. %e clai"ed that (e had at least one other secret lover. Arnel ad"itted that their
relationship started in ,--3 &ut Jhe never reall# fell in love /ith B(eC not onl# &ecause BsheC had at least one secret lover, a
certain 'un, &ut also &ecause she proved to &e sche"in$ and overl# de"andin$ and possessive. As a result, theirs /as a
stor"# on-and-off affair. ?hat started as a ro"antic liaison &et/een t/o consentin$ adults eventuall# turned out to &e a case of
fatal attraction /here B(eC &eca"e so o&sessed /ith BArnelC, to the point of even entertainin$ the idea of "arr#in$ hi", that she
resorted to various devious /a#s and "eans to alienate Bhi"C fro" his /ife and fa"il#K. Ena&le to &ear the prospect of losin$
his /ife and children, Arnel ter"inated the affair althou$h he still treated her as a friend such as &# referrin$ potential custo"ers
to the car aircon repair shopL
G2H
/here she /orked. =ater on, Arnel found out that (e had another erst/hile secret lover. 0n +a#
2000, Arnel and his entire fa"il# /ent to the Enited States for a vacation. Epon their return in 'une 2000, Arnel learned that (e
/as tellin$ people that he had i"pre$nated her. Arnel refused to ackno/led$e the child as his &ecause their Jlast inti"ac# /as
so"eti"e in ,--4.L
G4H
)5asperated, (e started callin$ ArnelIs /ife and fa"il#. !n 'anuar# ,-, 200,, (e follo/ed Arnel to the
Capitol %ills Golf and Countr# Clu& parkin$ lot to de"and that he ackno/led$e +artin as his child. Accordin$ to Arnel, he could
not $et throu$h (e and the discussion &eca"e so heated that he had no Jalternative &ut to "ove on &ut /ithout &u"pin$ or
hittin$ an# part of her &od#.L
G-H
(inall#, Arnel clai"ed that the si$nature and the co""unit# ta5 certificate BCTCC attri&uted to hi"
in the ackno/led$"ent of +artinIs &irth certificate /ere falsified. The CTC erroneousl# reflected his "arital status as sin$le
/hen he /as actuall# "arried and that his &irth #ear /as ,-@: /hen it should have &een ,-@9.
G,0H
0n his pre-trial &rief filed on +a# ,2, 2002, Arnel vehe"entl# denied havin$ sired +artin &ut e5pressed /illin$ness to
consider an# proposal to settle the case.
G,,H
!n 'ul# 23, 2002, (e and +artin "oved for the issuance of an order directin$ all the parties to su&"it the"selves to *NA
paternit# testin$ pursuant to Rule 24 of the Rules of Court.
G,2H
Arnel opposed said "otion &# invokin$ his constitutional ri$ht a$ainst self-incri"ination.
G,3H
%e also "oved to dis"iss the
co"plaint for lack of cause of action, considerin$ that his si$nature on the &irth certificate /as a for$er# and that, under the la/,
an ille$iti"ate child is not entitled to support if not reco$ni>ed &# the putative father.
G,9H
0n his "otion, Arnel "anifested that he
had filed cri"inal char$es for falsification of docu"ents a$ainst (e B0.S. Nos. 02-:223 and 02-2,-2C and a petition for
cancellation of his na"e appearin$ in +artinIs &irth certificate Bdocketed as Civil Case No. F-02-9@@@-C. %e attached the
certification of the Philippine National Police Cri"e =a&orator# that his si$nature in the &irth certificate /as for$ed.
The trial court denied the "otion to dis"iss the co"plaint and ordered the parties to su&"it the"selves to *NA paternit#
testin$ at the e5pense of the applicants. The Court of Appeals affir"ed the trial court.
Thus, this petition.
0n a nutshell, petitioner raises t/o issues6 B,C /hether a co"plaint for support can &e converted to a petition for
reco$nition and B2C /hether *NA paternit# testin$ can &e ordered in a proceedin$ for support /ithout violatin$ petitionerIs
constitutional ri$ht to privac# and ri$ht a$ainst self-incri"ination.
G,:H
The petition is /ithout "erit.
(irst of all, the trial court properl# denied the petitionerIs "otion to dis"iss &ecause the private respondentsI co"plaint on
its face sho/ed that the# had a cause of action a$ainst the petitioner. The ele"ents of a cause of action are6 B,C the plaintiffIs
pri"ar# ri$ht and the defendantIs correspondin$ pri"ar# dut#, and B2C the delict or /ron$ful act or o"ission of the defendant, &#
/hich the pri"ar# ri$ht and dut# have &een violated. The cause of action is deter"ined not &# the pra#er of the co"plaint &ut
&# the facts alle$ed.
G,@H
0n the co"plaint, private respondents alle$ed that (e had a"orous relations /ith the petitioner, as a result of /hich she
$ave &irth to +artin out of /edlock. 0n his ans/er, petitioner ad"itted that he had se5ual relations /ith (e &ut denied that he
fathered +artin, clai"in$ that he had ended the relationship lon$ &efore the childIs conception and &irth. 0t is undisputed and
even ad"itted &# the parties that there e5isted a se5ual relationship &et/een Arnel and (e. The onl# re"ainin$ 8uestion is
/hether such se5ual relationship produced the child, +artin. 0f it did, as respondents have alle$ed, then +artin should &e
supported &# his father Arnel. 0f not, petitioner and +artin are stran$ers to each other and +artin has no ri$ht to de"and and
petitioner has no o&li$ation to $ive support.
Preli"inaries aside, /e no/ tackle the "ain issues.
Petitioner refuses to reco$ni>e +artin as his o/n child and denies the $enuineness and authenticit# of the childIs &irth
certificate /hich he purportedl# si$ned as the father. %e also clai"s that the order and resolution of the trial court, as affir"ed
&# the Court of Appeals, effectivel# converted the co"plaint for support to a petition for reco$nition, /hich is supposedl#
proscri&ed &# la/. Accordin$ to petitioner, +artin, as an unreco$ni>ed child, has no ri$ht to ask for support and "ust first
esta&lish his filiation in a separate suit under Article 243
G,2H
in relation to Article 2@:
G,4H
of the Civil Code and Section ,, Rule
,0:
G,-H
of the Rules of Court.
The petitionerIs contentions are /ithout "erit.
The assailed resolution and order did not convert the action for support into one for reco$nition &ut "erel# allo/ed the
respondents to prove their cause of action a$ainst petitioner /ho had &een den#in$ the authenticit# of the docu"entar#
evidence of ackno/led$e"ent. Aut even if the assailed resolution and order effectivel# inte$rated an action to co"pel
reco$nition /ith an action for support, such /as valid and in accordance /ith 1urisprudence. 0n Taag v. Court of Appeals,
G20H
/e
allo/ed the inte$ration of an action to co"pel reco$nition /ith an action to clai" oneIs inheritance6
K0n Paulino, /e held that an ille$iti"ate child, to &e entitled to support and successional ri$hts fro" the putative or presu"ed
parent, "ust prove his filiation to the latter. ?e also said that it is necessar# to alle$e in the co"plaint that the putative father
had ackno/led$ed and reco$ni>ed the ille$iti"ate child &ecause such ackno/led$"ent is essential to and is the &asis of the
ri$ht to inherit. There &ein$ no alle$ation of such ackno/led$"ent, the action &eco"es one to co"pel reco$nition /hich
cannot &e &rou$ht after the death of the putative father. The ratio decidendi in Paulino, therefore, is not the a&sence of a cause
of action for failure of the petitioner to alle$e the fact of ackno/led$"ent in the co"plaint, &ut the prescription of the action.
Appl#in$ the fore$oin$ principles to the case at &ar, althou$h petitioner contends that the co"plaint filed &# herein private
respondent "erel# alle$es that the "inor Chad Cu#u$an is an ille$iti"ate child of the deceased and is actuall# a clai" for
inheritance, fro" the alle$ations therein the sa"e "a# &e considered as one to co"pel reco$nition. (urther, *+a* *+e *,o
-au.e. o/ a-*0on, one *o -o12e3 4e-o5n0*0on and *+e o*+e4 *o -3a01 0n+e40*an-e, 1a6 7e 8o0ned 0n one -o123a0n* 0. no*
ne, 0n ou4 8u40.24uden-e.
As earl# as G,-22H /e had occasion to rule thereon in Briz vs. Briz, et al. B93 Phil. 2@3 G,-22HC /herein /e said6
The 8uestion /hether a person in the position of the present plaintiff can in an# event "aintain a co"ple5 action to co"pel
reco$nition as a natural child and at the sa"e ti"e to o&tain ulterior relief in the character of heir, is one /hich in the opinion of
this court "ust &e ans/ered in the affir"ative, provided al/a#s that the conditions 1ustif#in$ the 1oinder of the t/o distinct
causes of action are present in the particular case. In o*+e4 ,o4d., *+e4e 0. no a7.o3u*e ne-e..0*6 4e9u040n5 *+a* *+e a-*0on
*o -o12e3 a-:no,3ed51en* .+ou3d +a;e 7een 0n.*0*u*ed and 24o.e-u*ed *o a .u--e../u3 -on-3u.0on 240o4 *o *+e a-*0on
0n ,+0-+ *+a* .a1e 23a0n*0// .ee:. add0*0ona3 4e30e/ 0n *+e -+a4a-*e4 o/ +e04. Certainl#, there is nothin$ so peculiar to the
action to co"pel ackno/led$"ent as to re8uire that a rule should &e here applied different fro" that $enerall# applica&le in
other cases. 5 5 5
The conclusion a&ove stated, thou$h not heretofore e5plicitl# for"ulated &# this court, is undou&tedl# to so"e e5tent supported
&# our prior decisions. Thus, ,e +a;e +e3d 0n nu1e4ou. -a.e., and *+e do-*40ne 1u.* 7e -on.0de4ed ,e33 .e**3ed, *+a* a
na*u4a3 -+03d +a;0n5 a 405+* *o -o12e3 a-:no,3ed51en*, 7u* ,+o +a. no* 7een 0n /a-* 3e5a336 a-:no,3ed5ed, 1a6
1a0n*a0n 2a4*0*0on 24o-eed0n5. /o4 *+e d0;0.0on o/ *+e 0n+e40*an-e a5a0n.* +0. -o+e04. < < <7 and the sa"e person "a#
intervene in proceedin$s for the distri&ution of the estate of his deceased natural father, or "other 5 5 5. 0n neither of these
situations has it &een thou$ht necessar# for the plaintiff to sho/ a prior decree co"pellin$ ackno/led$"ent. The o&vious
reason is that in partition suits and distri&ution proceedin$s the other persons /ho "i$ht take &# inheritance are &efore the
court7 and the declaration of heirship is appropriate to such proceedin$s. BEnderscorin$ suppliedC
Althou$h the instant case deals /ith support rather than inheritance, as in Taag, the &asis or rationale for inte$ratin$
the" re"ains the sa"e. ?hether or not respondent +artin is entitled to support depends co"pletel# on the deter"ination of
filiation. A separate action /ill onl# result in a "ultiplicit# of suits, $iven ho/ inti"atel# related the "ain issues in &oth cases
are. To paraphrase Taag, the declaration of filiation is entirel# appropriate to these proceedin$s.
!n the second issue, petitioner posits that *NA is not reco$ni>ed &# this Court as a conclusive "eans of provin$
paternit#. %e also contends that co"pulsor# testin$ violates his ri$ht to privac# and ri$ht a$ainst self-incri"ination as
$uaranteed under the ,-42 Constitution. These contentions have no "erit.
Given that this is the ver# first ti"e that the ad"issi&ilit# of *NA testin$ as a "eans for deter"inin$ paternit# has actuall#
&een the focal issue in a controvers#, a &rief historical sketch of our past decisions featurin$ or "entionin$ *NA testin$ is called
for.
0n the ,--: case of People v. Teehan!ee
G2,H
/here the appellant /as convicted of "urder on the testi"on# of three
e#e/itnesses, /e stated as an obiter dictum that J/hile e#e/itness identification is si$nificant, it is not as accurate and
authoritative as the scientific for"s of identification evidence such as the fin$erprint or the "#A test result Be"phasis suppliedC.L
!ur faith in *NA testin$, ho/ever, /as not 8uite so steadfast in the previous decade. 0n Pe $im v. Court of Appeals,
G22H
pro"ul$ated in ,--2, /e cautioned a$ainst the use of *NA &ecause J*NA, &ein$ a relativel# ne/ science, BhadC not as #et
&een accorded official reco$nition &# our courts. Paternit# B/ouldC still have to &e resolved &# such conventional evidence as
the relevant incri"inatin$ acts, ver&al and /ritten, &# the putative father.L
0n 200,, ho/ever, /e opened the possi&ilit# of ad"ittin$ *NA as evidence of parenta$e, as enunciated in Ti%ing v. Court
of Appeals6
G23H
A final note. Parenta$e /ill still &e resolved usin$ conventional "ethods unless /e adopt the "odern and scientific /a#s
availa&le. (ortunatel#, /e have no/ the facilit# and e5pertise in usin$ *NA test for identification and parenta$e testin$. The
Eniversit# of the Philippines Natural Science Research 0nstitute BEP-NSR0C *NA Anal#sis =a&orator# has no/ the capa&ilit# to
conduct *NA t#pin$ usin$ short tande" repeat BSTRC anal#sis. The anal#sis is &ased on the fact that the *NA of a
childMperson has t/o B2C copies, one cop# fro" the "other and the other fro" the father. The *NA fro" the "other, the alle$ed
father and child are anal#>ed to esta&lish parenta$e. !f course, &ein$ a novel scientific techni8ue, the use of *NA test as
evidence is still open to challen$e. )ventuall#, as the appropriate case co"es, courts should not hesitate to rule on the
ad"issi&ilit# of *NA evidence. (or it /as said, that courts should appl# the results of science /hen co"petentl# o&tained in aid
of situations presented, since to re1ect said result is to den# pro$ress.
The first real &reakthrou$h of *NA as ad"issi&le and authoritative evidence in Philippine 1urisprudence ca"e in 2002
/ith our en banc decision in People v. &alle%o
G29H
/here the rape and "urder victi"Is *NA sa"ples fro" the &loodstained
clothes of the accused /ere ad"itted in evidence. ?e reasoned that Jthe purpose of *NA testin$ B/asC to ascertain /hether an
association e5istBedC &et/een the evidence sa"ple and the reference sa"ple. The sa"ples collected B/ereC su&1ected to
various che"ical processes to esta&lish their profile.L
A #ear later, in People v. 'anson,
G2:H
/e ac8uitted the accused char$ed /ith rape for lack of evidence &ecause Jdou&ts
persistBedC in our "ind as to /ho B/ereC the real "alefactors. Nes, a co"ple5 offense BhadC &een perpetrated &ut /ho B/ereC
the perpetratorsO %o/ /e /ish /e had *NA or other scientific evidence to still our dou&tsPL
0n 2009, in Tecson, et al. v. C()*$*C
G2@H
/here the Court en banc /as faced /ith the issue of filiation of then presidential
candidate (ernando Poe 'r., /e stated6
0n case proof of filiation or paternit# /ould &e unlikel# to satisfactoril# esta&lish or /ould &e difficult to o&tain, *NA testin$,
/hich e5a"ines $enetic codes o&tained fro" &od# cells of the ille$iti"ate child and an# ph#sical residue of the lon$ dead
parent could &e resorted to. A positive "atch /ould clear up filiation or paternit#. 0n Ti1in$ vs. Court of Appeals, this Court has
ackno/led$ed the stron$ /ei$ht of *NA testin$K
+oreover, in our en banc decision in People v. +atar,
G22H
/e affir"ed the conviction of the accused for rape /ith ho"icide,
the principal evidence for /hich included *NA test results. ?e did a len$th# discussion of *NA, the process of *NA testin$
and the reasons for its ad"issi&ilit# in the conte5t of our o/n Rules of )vidence6
*eo5#ri&onucleic Acid, or *NA, is a "olecule that encodes the $enetic infor"ation in all livin$ or$anis"s. A personIs *NA is the
sa"e in each cell and it does not chan$e throu$hout a personIs lifeti"e7 the *NA in a personIs &lood is the sa"e as the *NA
found in his saliva, s/eat, &one, the root and shaft of hair, ear/a5, "ucus, urine, skin tissue, and va$inal and rectal cells. +ost
i"portantl#, &ecause of pol#"orphis"s in hu"an $enetic structure, no t/o individuals have the sa"e *NA, /ith the nota&le
e5ception of identical t/ins.
555 555 555
0n assessin$ the pro&ative value of *NA evidence, courts should consider, inter alia, the follo/in$ factors6 ho/ the sa"ples
/ere collected, ho/ the# /ere handled, the possi&ilit# of conta"ination of the sa"ples, the procedure follo/ed in anal#>in$ the
sa"ples, /hether proper standards and procedures /ere follo/ed in conductin$ the tests, and the 8ualification of the anal#st
/ho conducted the tests.
0n the case at &ar, *r. +aria Cora>on A&o$ado de En$ria /as dul# 8ualified &# the prosecution as an e5pert /itness on *NA
print or identification techni8ues. Aased on *r. de En$riaIs testi"on#, it /as deter"ined that the $ene t#pe and *NA profile of
appellant are identical to that of the e5tracts su&1ect of e5a"ination. The &lood sa"ple taken fro" the appellant sho/ed that
he /as of the follo/in$ $ene t#pes6 v?A ,:M,-, T%0, 2M4, *%(RP2-M,0 and CS(,P! ,0M,,, /hich are identical /ith se"en
taken fro" the victi"Is va$inal canal. Deril#, a *NA "atch e5ists &et/een the se"en found in the victi" and the &lood sa"ple
$iven &# the appellant in open court durin$ the course of the trial.
Ad"ittedl#, /e are 1ust &e$innin$ to inte$rate these advances in science and technolo$# in the Philippine cri"inal 1ustice
s#ste", so /e "ust &e cautious as /e traverse these relativel# uncharted /aters. (ortunatel#, /e can &enefit fro" the /ealth
of persuasive 1urisprudence that has developed in other 1urisdictions. Specificall#, the prevailin$ doctrine in the E.S. has proven
instructive.
0n "aubert v. )errell "o, B:0- E.S. :2- B,--3C7 ,2: =. )d. 2d 9@-C it /as ruled that pertinent evidence &ased on scientificall#
valid principles could &e used as lon$ as it /as relevant and relia&le. 'ud$es, under "aubert, /ere allo/ed $reater discretion
over /hich testi"on# the# /ould allo/ at trial, includin$ the introduction of ne/ kinds of scientific techni8ues. *NA t#pin$ is one
such novel procedure.
Ender Philippine la/, evidence is relevant /hen it relates directl# to a fact in issue as to induce &elief in its e5istence or non-
e5istence. Appl#in$ the "aubert test to the case at &ar, the *NA evidence o&tained throu$h PCR testin$ and utili>in$ STR
anal#sis, and /hich /as appreciated &# the court a quo is relevant and relia&le since it is reasona&l# &ased on scientificall#
valid principles of hu"an $enetics and "olecular &iolo$#.
Si$nificantl#, /e upheld the constitutionalit# of co"pulsor# *NA testin$ and the ad"issi&ilit# of the results thereof as
evidence. 0n that case, *NA sa"ples fro" se"en recovered fro" a rape victi"Is va$ina /ere used to positivel# identif# the
accused 'oel J;a/itL Natar as the rapist. Natar clai"ed that the co"pulsor# e5traction of his &lood sa"ple for *NA testin$, as
/ell as the testin$ itself, violated his ri$ht a$ainst self-incri"ination, as e"&odied in &oth Sections ,2 and ,2 of Article 000 of the
Constitution. ?e addressed this as follo/s6
The contention is untena&le. The kernel of the ri$ht is not a$ainst all co"pulsion, &ut a$ainst testi"onial co"pulsion. The ri$ht
a$ainst self-incri"ination is si"pl# a$ainst the le$al process of e5tractin$ fro" the lips of the accused an ad"ission of $uilt. 0t
does not appl# /here the evidence sou$ht to &e e5cluded is not an incri"ination &ut as part of o&1ect evidence.
!ver the #ears, /e have e5pressl# e5cluded several kinds of o&1ect evidence taken fro" the person of the accused fro"
the real" of self-incri"ination. These include photo$raphs,
G24H
hair,
G2-H
and other &odil# su&stances.
G30H
?e have also declared as
constitutional several procedures perfor"ed on the accused such as pre$nanc# tests for /o"en accused of adulter#,
G3,H
e5pulsion of "orphine fro" oneIs "outh
G32H
and the tracin$ of oneIs foot to deter"ine its identit# /ith &lood# footprints.
G33H
0n 'imenez v. Ca-izares,
G39H
/e even authori>ed the e5a"ination of a /o"anIs $enitalia, in an action for annul"ent filed &#
her hus&and, to verif# his clai" that she /as i"potent, her orifice &ein$ too s"all for his penis. So"e of these procedures
/ere, to &e sure, rather invasive and involuntar#, &ut all of the" /ere constitutionall# sound. *NA testin$ and its results, per our
rulin$ in +atar,
G3:H
are no/ si"ilarl# accepta&le.
Nor does petitionerIs invocation of his ri$ht to privac# persuade us. 0n (ple v. Torres,
G3@H
/here /e struck do/n the
proposed national co"puteri>ed identification s#ste" e"&odied in Ad"inistrative !rder No. 304, /e said6
.n no uncertain terms, ,e also underscore that the right to privac does not bar all incursions into individual privac. The right is
not intended to stifle scientific and technological advancements that enhance public service and the common good... 0ntrusions
into the ri$ht "ust &e acco"panied &# proper safe$uards that enhance pu&lic service and the co""on $ood.
%istoricall#, it has "ostl# &een in the areas of le$alit# of searches and sei>ures,
G32H
and the infrin$e"ent of privac# of
co""unication
G34H
/here the constitutional ri$ht to privac# has &een criticall# at issue. PetitionerIs case involves neither and, as
alread# stated, his ar$u"ent that his ri$ht a$ainst self-incri"ination is in 1eopard# holds no /ater. %is hollo/ invocation of his
constitutional ri$hts elicits no s#"path# here for the si"ple reason that the# are not in an# /a# &ein$ violated. 0f, in a cri"inal
case, an accused /hose ver# life is at stake can &e co"pelled to su&"it to *NA testin$, /e see no reason /h#, in this civil
case, petitioner herein /ho does not face such dire conse8uences cannot &e ordered to do the sa"e.
*NA paternit# testin$ first ca"e to pro"inence in the Enited States, /here it #ielded its first official results so"eti"e in
,-4:. 0n the decade that follo/ed, *NA rapidl# found /idespread $eneral acceptance.
G3-H
Several cases decided &# various
State Supre"e Courts reflect the total assi"ilation of *NA testin$ into their rules of procedure and evidence.
The case of /ilson v. $umb
G90H
sho/s that *NA testin$ is so co""onl# accepted that, in so"e instances, orderin$ the
procedure has &eco"e a "inisterial act. The Supre"e Court of St. =a/rence Count#, Ne/ Nork allo/ed a part# /ho had
alread# ackno/led$ed paternit# to su&se8uentl# challen$e his prior ackno/led$"ent. The Court pointed out that, under the
la/, specificall# Section :,@ of the Ne/ Nork (a"il# Court Act, the (a"il# Court e5a"iner had the dut#, upon receipt of the
challen$e, to order *NA tests6
G9,H
Q :,@-a. Ackno/led$"ent of paternit#. BaC An ackno/led$"ent of paternit# e5ecuted pursuant to section one hundred eleven-k
of the social services la/ or section four thousand one hundred thirt#-five-& of the pu&lic health la/ shall esta&lish the paternit#
of and lia&ilit# for the support of a child pursuant to this act. Such ackno/led$"ent "ust &e reduced to /ritin$ and filed
pursuant to section four thousand one hundred thirt#-five-& of the pu&lic health la/ /ith the re$istrar of the district in /hich the
&irth occurred and in /hich the &irth certificate has &een filed. No further 1udicial or ad"inistrative proceedin$s are re8uired to
ratif# an unchallen$ed ackno/led$"ent of paternit#.
B&C An ackno/led$"ent of paternit# e5ecuted pursuant to section one hundred eleven-k of the social services la/ or section
four thousand one hundred thirt#-five-& of the pu&lic health la/ "a# &e rescinded &# either si$natorIs filin$ of a petition /ith the
court to vacate the ackno/led$"ent /ithin the earlier of si5t# da#s of the date of si$nin$ the ackno/led$"ent or the date of an
ad"inistrative or a 1udicial proceedin$ Bincludin$ a proceedin$ to esta&lish a support orderC relatin$ to the child in /hich either
si$nator is a part#. (or purposes of this section, the date of an ad"inistrative or a 1udicial proceedin$ shall &e the date &#
/hich the respondent is re8uired to ans/er the petition. After the e5piration of si5t# da#s of the e5ecution of the
ackno/led$"ent, either si$nator "a# challen$e the ackno/led$"ent of paternit# in court onl# on the &asis of fraud, duress, or
"aterial "istake of fact, /ith the &urden of proof on the part# challen$in$ the voluntar# ackno/led$"ent. U2on 4e-e0;0n5 a
2a4*6=. -+a33en5e *o an a-:no,3ed51en*, *+e -ou4* .+a33 o4de4 5ene*0- 1a4:e4 *e.*. o4 NA *e.*. /o4 *+e de*e410na*0on
o/ *+e -+03d=. 2a*e4n0*6 and .+a33 1a:e a /0nd0n5 o/ 2a*e4n0*6, 0/ a224o240a*e, 0n a--o4dan-e ,0*+ *+0. a4*0-3e. Neither
si$natorIs le$al o&li$ations, includin$ the o&li$ation for child support arisin$ fro" the ackno/led$"ent, "a# &e suspended
durin$ the challen$e to the ackno/led$"ent e5cept for $ood cause as the court "a# find. 0f a part# petitions to rescind an
ackno/led$"ent and if the court deter"ines that the alle$ed father is not the father of the child, or if the court finds that an
ackno/led$"ent is invalid &ecause it /as e5ecuted on the &asis of fraud, duress, or "aterial "istake of fact, the court shall
vacate the ackno/led$"ent of paternit# and shall i""ediatel# provide a cop# of the order to the re$istrar of the district in /hich
the childIs &irth certificate is filed and also to the putative father re$istr# operated &# the depart"ent of social services pursuant
to section three hundred sevent#-t/o-c of the social services la/. 0n addition, if the "other of the child /ho is the su&1ect of the
ackno/led$"ent is in receipt of child support services pursuant to title si5-A of article three of the social services la/, the court
shall i""ediatel# provide a cop# of the order to the child support enforce"ent unit of the social services district that provides
the "other /ith such services.
BcC A deter"ination of paternit# "ade &# an# other state, /hether esta&lished throu$h the parentsI ackno/led$"ent of paternit#
or throu$h an ad"inistrative or 1udicial process, "ust &e accorded full faith and credit, if and onl# if such ackno/led$"ent
"eets the re8uire"ents set forth in section 9:2BaCB2C of the social securit# act.
Be"phasis suppliedC
*NA testin$ also appears else/here in the Ne/ Nork (a"il# Court Act6
G92H
Q:32. Genetic "arker and *NA tests7 ad"issi&ilit# of records or reports of test results7 costs of tests.
aC The court shall advise the parties of their ri$ht to one or "ore $enetic "arker tests or *NA tests and, on the courtIs o/n
"otion or the "otion of an# part#, shall order the "other, her child and the alle$ed father to su&"it to one or "ore $enetic
"arker or *NA tests of a t#pe $enerall# ackno/led$ed as relia&le &# an accreditation &od# desi$nated &# the secretar# of the
federal depart"ent of health and hu"an services and perfor"ed &# a la&orator# approved &# such an accreditation &od# and
&# the co""issioner of health or &# a dul# 8ualified ph#sician to aid in the deter"ination of /hether the alle$ed father is or is
not the father of the child. No .u-+ *e.* .+a33 7e o4de4ed, +o,e;e4, u2on a ,40**en /0nd0n5 76 *+e -ou4* *+a* 0* 0. no* 0n *+e
7e.* 0n*e4e.*. o/ *+e -+03d on *+e 7a.0. o/ 4e. 8ud0-a*a, e9u0*a73e e.*o22e3, o4 *+e 24e.u12*0on o/ 3e50*01a-6 o/ a -+03d
7o4n *o a 1a440ed ,o1an. The record or report of the results of an# such $enetic "arker or *NA test ordered pursuant to this
section or pursuant to section one hundred eleven-k of the social services la/ shall &e received in evidence &# the court
pursuant to su&division BeC of rule fort#-five hundred ei$hteen of the civil practice la/ and rules /here no ti"el# o&1ection in
/ritin$ has &een "ade thereto and that if such ti"el# o&1ections are not "ade, the# shall &e dee"ed /aived and shall not &e
heard &# the court. I/ *+e 4e-o4d o4 4e2o4* o/ *+e 4e.u3*. o/ an6 .u-+ 5ene*0- 1a4:e4 o4 NA *e.* o4 *e.*. 0nd0-a*e a* 3ea.*
a n0ne*6>/0;e 2e4-en* 24o7a7030*6 o/ 2a*e4n0*6, *+e ad10..0on o/ .u-+ 4e-o4d o4 4e2o4* .+a33 -4ea*e a 4e7u**a73e
24e.u12*0on o/ 2a*e4n0*6, and .+a33 e.*a730.+, 0/ un4e7u**ed, *+e 2a*e4n0*6 o/ and 30a7030*6 /o4 *+e .u22o4* o/ a -+03d
2u4.uan* *o *+0. a4*0-3e and a4*0-3e /ou4 o/ *+0. a-*.
B&C ?henever the court directs a $enetic "arker or *NA test pursuant to this section, a report "ade as provided in su&division
BaC of this section "a# &e received in evidence pursuant to rule fort#-five hundred ei$hteen of the civil practice la/ and rules if
offered &# an# part#.
BcC The cost of an# test ordered pursuant to su&division BaC of this section shall &e, in the first instance, paid &# the "ovin$
part#. 0f the "ovin$ part# is financiall# una&le to pa# such cost, the court "a# direct an# 8ualified pu&lic health officer to conduct
such test, if practica&le7 other/ise, the court "a# direct pa#"ent fro" the funds of the appropriate local social services district.
0n its order of disposition, ho/ever, the court "a# direct that the cost of an# such test &e apportioned &et/een the parties
accordin$ to their respective a&ilities to pa# or &e assessed a$ainst the part# /ho does not prevail on the issue of paternit#,
unless such part# is financiall# una&le to pa#. Be"phasis suppliedC
0n R.*. v. C.*./.,
G93H
a decision of the +ississippi Supre"e Court, *NA tests /ere used to prove that %.?., previousl#
thou$ht to &e an offsprin$ of the "arria$e &et/een A.C.?. and C.).?., /as actuall# the child of R.). /ith /ho" C.).?. had, at
the ti"e of conception, "aintained an adulterous relationship.
0n *rie Count "epartment of 0ocial 0ervices on behalf of Tiffan ).1. v. 2reg 2. ,
G99H
the 9
th
*epart"ent of the Ne/ Nork
Supre"e CourtIs Appellate *ivision allo/ed G.G., /ho had &een ad1udicated as T.+.%.Is father &# default, to have the said
1ud$"ent vacated, even after si5 #ears, once he had sho/n throu$h a $enetic "arker test that he /as not the childIs father. 0n
this case, G.G. onl# re8uested the tests after the *epart"ent of Social Services, si5 #ears after G.G. had &een ad1udicated as
T.+.%.Is father, sou$ht an increase in his support o&li$ation to her.
0n 2reco v. Coleman,
G9:H
the +ichi$an Supre"e Court /hile rulin$ on the constitutionalit# of a provision of la/ allo/in$
non-"odifia&le support a$ree"ents pointed out that it /as &ecause of the difficult# of deter"inin$ paternit# &efore the advent of
*NA testin$ that such support a$ree"ents /ere necessar#6
As a result of NA testin$, the accurac# /ith /hich paternit# can &e proven has increased si$nificantl# since the parties in this
la/suit entered into their support a$ree"entKBcurrent testin$ "ethods can deter"ine the pro&a&ilit# of paternit# to
--.------R accurac#C. %o/ever, at the ti"e the parties &efore us entered into the disputed a$ree"ent, provin$ paternit# /as
a ver# si$nificant o&stacle to an ille$iti"ate child.s access to child support. The first reported results of "odern NApaternit#
testin$ did not occur until ,-4:. B0n fact, since its first reported results in ,-4:, NA "atchin$ has pro$ressed to .$eneral
acceptance in less than a decade.C. !f course, /hile prior &lood-testin$ "ethods could e5clude so"e "ales fro" &ein$ the
possi&le father of a child, those "ethods could not affir"ativel# pinpoint a particular "ale as &ein$ the father. Thus, /hen the
settle"ent a$ree"ent &et/een the present parties /as entered in ,-40, esta&lishin$ paternit# /as a far "ore difficult ordeal
than at present. Contested paternit# actions at that ti"e /ere often no "ore than credi&ilit# contests. Conse8uentl#, in ever#
contested paternit# action, o&tainin$ child support depended not "erel# on /hether the putative father /as, in fact, the child.s
&iolo$ical father, &ut rather on /hether the "other could prove to a court of la/ that she /as onl# se5uall# involved /ith one
"an--the putative father. Allo/in$ parties the option of enterin$ into private a$ree"ents in lieu of provin$ paternit# eli"inated
the risk that the "other /ould &e una&le "eet her &urden of proof.
0t is /orth notin$ that a"end"ents to +ichi$anIs Paternit# la/ have included the use of *NA testin$6
G9@H
Q222.2,@ Pretrial proceedin$s7 &lood or tissue t#pin$ deter"inations as to "other, child, and alle$ed father7 court order7 refusal
to su&"it to t#pin$ or identification profilin$7 8ualifications of person conductin$ t#pin$ or identification profilin$7 co"pensation
of e5pert7 result of t#pin$ or identification profilin$7 filin$ su""ar# report7 o&1ection7 ad"issi&ilit#7 presu"ption7 &urden of proof7
su""ar# disposition.
Sec. @.
B,C In a 24o-eed0n5 unde4 *+0. a-* 7e/o4e *40a3, *+e -ou4*, u2on a2230-a*0on 1ade 76 o4 on 7e+a3/ o/ e0*+e4 2a4*6, o4 on 0*.
o,n 1o*0on, .+a33 o4de4 *+a* *+e 1o*+e4, -+03d, and a33e5ed /a*+e4 .u710* *o 73ood o4 *0..ue *620n5 de*e410na*0on.,
,+0-+ 1a6 0n-3ude, 7u* a4e no* 3010*ed *o, de*e410na*0on. o/ 4ed -e33 an*05en., 4ed -e33 0.oen?61e., +u1an 3eu:o-6*e
an*05en., .e4u1 24o*e0n., o4 NA 0den*0/0-a*0on 24o/030n5, *o de*e410ne ,+e*+e4 *+e a33e5ed /a*+e4 0. 30:e36 *o 7e, o4 0.
no*, *+e /a*+e4 o/ *+e -+03d. I/ *+e -ou4* o4de4. a 73ood o4 *0..ue *620n5 o4 NA 0den*0/0-a*0on 24o/030n5 *o 7e -ondu-*ed
and a 2a4*6 4e/u.e. *o .u710* *o *+e *620n5 o4 NA 0den*0/0-a*0on 24o/030n5, 0n add0*0on *o an6 o*+e4 4e1ed0e. a;a03a73e,
*+e -ou4* 1a6 do e0*+e4 o/ *+e /o33o,0n56
@aA En*e4 a de/au3* 8ud51en* a* *+e 4e9ue.* o/ *+e a224o240a*e 2a4*6.
@7A I/ a *40a3 0. +e3d, a33o, *+e d0.-3o.u4e o/ *+e /a-* o/ *+e 4e/u.a3 un3e.. 5ood -au.e 0. .+o,n /o4 no* d0.-3o.0n5 *+e
/a-* o/ 4e/u.a3.
B2C A &lood or tissue t#pin$ or *NA identification profilin$ shall &e conducted &# a person accredited for paternit# deter"inations
&# a nationall# reco$ni>ed scientific or$ani>ation, includin$, &ut not li"ited to, the A"erican association of &lood &anks.
555 555 555
B:C I/ *+e 24o7a7030*6 o/ 2a*e4n0*6 de*e410ned 76 *+e 9ua30/0ed 2e4.on de.-407ed 0n .u7.e-*0on @2A -ondu-*0n5 *+e 73ood
o4 *0..ue *620n5 o4 NA 0den*0/0-a*0on 24o/030n5 0. 99B o4 +05+e4, and *+e NA 0den*0/0-a*0on 24o/03e and .u11a46 4e2o4*
a4e ad10..073e a. 24o;0ded 0n .u7.e-*0on @#A, 2a*e4n0*6 0. 24e.u1ed. I/ *+e 4e.u3*. o/ *+e ana36.0. o/ 5ene*0- *e.*0n5
1a*e40a3 /4o1 2 o4 1o4e 2e4.on. 0nd0-a*e a 24o7a7030*6 o/ 2a*e4n0*6 54ea*e4 *+an 99B, *+e -on*4a-*0n5 3a7o4a*o46 .+a33
-ondu-* add0*0ona3 5ene*0- 2a*e4n0*6 *e.*0n5 un*03 a33 7u* 1 o/ *+e 2u*a*0;e /a*+e4. 0. e3010na*ed, un3e.. *+e d0.2u*e
0n;o3;e. 2 o4 1o4e 2u*a*0;e /a*+e4. ,+o +a;e 0den*0-a3 NA.
B@C Epon the esta&lish"ent of the presu"ption of paternit# as provided in su&section B:C, either part# "a# "ove for su""ar#
disposition under the court rules. this section does not a&ro$ate the ri$ht of either part# to child support fro" the date of &irth of
the child if applica&le under section 2. Be"phasis suppliedC
0n Raffert v. Per!ins,
G92H
the Supre"e Court of +ississippi ruled that *NA test results sho/in$ paternit# /ere sufficient to
overthro/ the presu"ption of le$iti"ac# of a child &orn durin$ the course of a "arria$e6
The presu"ption of le$iti"ac# havin$ &een re&utted &# the results of the &lood test eli"inatin$ Perkins as 'ustin.s father, even
considerin$ the evidence in the li$ht "ost favora&le to Perkins, /e find that no reasona&le 1ur# could find that )aster is not
'ustin.s father &ased upon the --.-9R pro&a&ilit# of paternit# concluded &# the *NA testin$.
0n 0.'.3. and '.C.3. v. R.C./.,
G94H
the North *akota Supre"e Court upheld an order for $enetic testin$ $iven &# the Court
of Appeals, even after trial on the "erits had concluded /ithout such order &ein$ $iven. Si$nificantl#, /hen '.C.(., the "other,
first filed the case for paternit# and support /ith the *istrict Court, neither part# re8uested $enetic testin$. 0t /as onl# upon
appeal fro" dis"issal of the case that the appellate court re"anded the case and ordered the testin$, /hich the North *akota
Supre"e Court upheld.
The case of 4ohl v. Amundson,
G9-H
decided &# the Supre"e Court of South *akota, de"onstrated that even default
1ud$"ents of paternit# could &e vacated after the ad1udicated father had, throu$h *NA testin$, esta&lished non-paternit#. 0n
this case, ;ohl, havin$ e5cluded hi"self as the father of A"undsonIs child throu$h *NA testin$, /as a&le to have the default
1ud$"ent a$ainst hi" vacated. %e then o&tained a rulin$ orderin$ A"undson to rei"&urse hi" for the a"ounts /ithheld fro"
his /a$es for child support. The Court said JB/Chile A"undson "a# have a re"ed# a$ainst the father of the child, she
su&"itBtedC no authorit# that re8uireBdC ;ohl to support her child. Contrar# to A"undson.s position, the fact that a default
1ud$"ent /as entered, &ut su&se8uentl# vacated, BdidC not foreclose ;ohl fro" o&tainin$ a "one# 1ud$"ent for the a"ount
/ithheld fro" his /a$es.L
0n ).A.0. v. )ississippi "ept. of 1uman 0ervices,
G:0H
another case decided &# the Supre"e Court of +ississippi, it /as
held that even if paternit# /as esta&lished throu$h an earlier a$reed order of filiation, child support and visitation orders could
still &e vacated once *NA testin$ esta&lished so"eone other than the na"ed individual to &e the &iolo$ical father. The
+ississippi %i$h Court reiterated this doctrine in /illiams v. /illiams.
G:,H
The fore$oin$ considered, /e find no $rave a&use of discretion on the part of the pu&lic respondent for upholdin$ the
orders of the trial court /hich &oth denied the petitionerIs "otion to dis"iss and ordered hi" to su&"it hi"self for *NA testin$.
Ender Rule @: of the ,--2 Rules of Civil Procedure, the re"ed# of certiorari is onl# availa&le J/hen an# tri&unal, &oard or
officer has acted /ithout or in e5cess of its or his 1urisdiction, or /ith $rave a&use of discretion a"ountin$ to lack or e5cess of
1urisdiction, and there is no appeal, nor an# plain, speed# and ade8uate re"ed# in the ordinar# course of la/.L
G:2H
0n $and Ban!
of the Philippines v. the Court of Appeals
G:3H
/here /e dis"issed a special civil action for certiorari under Rule @:, /e discussed
at len$th the nature of such a petition and 1ust /hat /as "eant &# J$rave a&use of discretionL6
Grave a&use of discretion i"plies such capricious and /hi"sical e5ercise of 1ud$"ent as is e8uivalent to lack of 1urisdiction or,
in other /ords, ,+e4e *+e 2o,e4 0. e<e4-0.ed 0n an a470*4a46 1anne4 76 4ea.on o/ 2a..0on, 24e8ud0-e, o4 2e4.ona3
+o.*030*6, and 0* 1u.* 7e .o 2a*en* o4 54o.. a. *o a1oun* *o an e;a.0on o/ a 2o.0*0;e du*6 o4 *o a ;04*ua3 4e/u.a3 *o
2e4/o41 *+e du*6 en8o0ned o4 *o a-* a* a33 0n -on*e123a*0on o/ 3a,.
The special civil action for certiorari is a re"ed# desi$ned for the correction of errors of 1urisdiction and not errors of 1ud$"ent.
The raison d5etre for the rule is /hen a court e5ercises its 1urisdiction, an error co""itted /hile so en$a$ed does not deprive it
of the 1urisdiction &ein$ e5ercised /hen the error is co""itted. 0f it did, ever# error co""itted &# a court /ould deprive it of its
1urisdiction and ever# erroneous 1ud$"ent /ould &e a void 1ud$"ent. 0n such a scenario, the ad"inistration of 1ustice /ould not
survive. %ence, /here the issue or 8uestion involved affects the /isdo" or le$al soundness of the decisionSnot the
1urisdiction of the court to render said decisionSthe sa"e is &e#ond the province of a special civil action for certiorari.
The proper recourse of the a$$rieved part# fro" a decision of the CA is a petition for revie/ on certiorari under Rule 9: of the
Revised Rules of Court. !n the other hand, if the error su&1ect of the recourse is one of 1urisdiction, or the act co"plained of
/as perpetrated &# a 8uasi-1udicial officer or a$enc# /ith $rave a&use of discretion a"ountin$ to lack or e5cess of 1urisdiction,
the proper re"ed# availa&le to the a$$rieved part# is a petition for certiorari under Rule @: of the said Rules. Be"phasis
suppliedC
0n the instant case, the petitioner has in no /a# sho/n an# ar&itrariness, passion, pre1udice or personal hostilit# that
/ould a"ount to $rave a&use of discretion on the part of the Court of Appeals. The respondent court acted entirel# /ithin its
1urisdiction in pro"ul$atin$ its decision and resolution, and an# error "ade /ould have onl# &een an error in 1ud$"ent. As /e
have discussed, ho/ever, the decision of the respondent court, &ein$ fir"l# anchored in la/ and 1urisprudence, /as correct.
E203o5ue
(or too lon$, ille$iti"ate children have &een "ar$inali>ed &# fathers /ho choose to den# their e5istence. The $ro/in$
sophistication of *NA testin$ technolo$# finall# provides a "uch needed e8uali>er for such ostraci>ed and a&andoned pro$en#.
?e have lon$ &elieved in the "erits of *NA testin$ and have repeatedl# e5pressed as "uch in the past. This case co"es at a
perfect ti"e /hen *NA testin$ has finall# evolved into a dependa&le and authoritative for" of evidence $atherin$. ?e therefore
take this opportunit# to forcefull# reiterate our stand that *NA testin$ is a valid "eans of deter"inin$ paternit#.
CHEREFORE, in vie/ of the fore$oin$, the petition is here&# *)N0)*. The Court of AppealsI decision dated 'anuar# 24,
2009 in CA-G.R. SP No. 40-@, is here&# A((0R+)* in toto.
Costs a$ainst petitioner.
SO ORERE.
JENIE SAN JUAN ELA CRUD and 10no4
CHRISTIAN ELA CRUD EAFUINO,G
4e24e.en*ed 76 JENIE SAN JUAN ELA
CRUD,
G.R. No. 1%%%2&

Present6

Petitioners,


T versus T


RONAL PAUL S. GRACIA, 0n +0. -a2a-0*6 a.
C0*6 C0;03 Re50.*4a4 o/ An*02o3o C0*6,
Respondent.
FE0SE+A0NG, '., Chairperson,
CARP0! +!RA=)S,
C%0C!-NAUAR0!,
=)!NAR*!-*) CASTR!, and
P)RA=TA,
V
''.




Pro"ul$ated6

'ul# 3,, 200-
5 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5

E C I S I O N

CARPIO MORALES, J.!
(or several "onths in 200:, then 2,-#ear old petitioner 'enie San 'uan *ela Cru> B'enieC and then ,--#ear old
Christian *o"ini8ue Sto. To"as A8uino B*o"ini8ueC lived to$ether as hus&and and /ife /ithout the &enefit of "arria$e. The#
resided in the house of *o"ini8ueIs parents *o"in$o A. A8uino and Ra8uel Sto. To"as A8uino at Pulan$-lupa, *ulu"&a#an,
Teresa, Ri>al.

!n Septe"&er 9, 200:, *o"ini8ue died.
G,H
After al"ost t/o "onths, or on Nove"&er 2, 200:, 'enie, /ho continued
to live /ith *o"ini8ueIs parents, $ave &irth to her herein co-petitioner "inor child Christian *ela Cru> JA8uinoL at the Antipolo
*octors %ospital, Antipolo Cit#.

'enie applied for re$istration of the childIs &irth, usin$ *o"ini8ueIs surna"e A8uino, /ith the !ffice of the Cit# Civil
Re$istrar, Antipolo Cit#, in support of /hich she su&"itted the childIs Certificate of $ive Birth,
G2H
Affidavit to 6se the 0urname of
the 3ather
G3H
BAES(C /hich she had e5ecuted and si$ned, and Affidavit of Ac!no,ledgment e5ecuted &# *o"ini8ueIs father
*o"in$o Autch A8uino.
G9H
Aoth affidavits attested, inter alia, that durin$ the lifeti"e of *o"ini8ue, he had continuousl#
ackno/led$ed his #et un&orn child, and that his paternit# had never &een 8uestioned. 'enie attached to the AES( a docu"ent
entitled JAET!A0!GRAP%NL /hich *o"ini8ue, durin$ his lifeti"e, /rote in his o/n hand/ritin$, the pertinent portions of /hich
read6

AFE0N!, C%R0ST0AN *!+0N0FE) S.T.

AET!A0!GRAP%N

0I+ C%R0ST0AN *!+0N0FE) ST!. T!+AS AFE0N!, ,- N)ARS !( AG) TERN0NG 20 T%0S
C!+0NG !CT!A)R 3,, 200:.
G:H
0 R)S0*) AT PE=ANG-=EPA STR))T ARGN. *E=E+AANAN, T)R)SA,
R0UA=. 0 A+ T%) N!ENG)ST 0N !ER (A+0=N. 0 %AD) !N) AR!T%)R NA+)* '!S)P% AETC% ST!.
T!+AS AFE0N!. +N (AT%)RIS NA+) 0S *!+0NG! AETC% AFE0N! AN* +N +!T%)RIS NA+) 0S
RAFE)= ST!. T!+AS AFE0N!. 5 5 5.

5 5 5 5

AS !( N!? 0 %AD) +N ?0() NA+)* ')N0) *)=A CREU. ?) +)T )AC% !T%)R 0N !ER
%!+)T!?N, T)R)UA R0UA=. AT (0RST ?) A)CA+) G!!* (R0)N*S, T%)N ?) ()== 0N =!D)
?0T% )AC% !T%)R, T%)N ?) A)CA+) G!!* C!EP=)S. AN AS OF NOC S%) 0S
PR)GNANT AN FOR THAT ?) =0D) T!G)T%)R 0N !ER %!ES) N!?. T%ATIS A==.
G@H
B)"phasis
and underscorin$ suppliedC

A# letter dated Nove"&er ,,, 200:,
G2H
the Cit# Civil Re$istrar of Antipolo Cit#, Ronald Paul S. Gracia
BrespondentC, denied 'enieIs application for re$istration of the childIs na"e in this /ise6

2. Rule 2 of Ad"inistrative !rder No. ,, Series of 2009 B0"ple"entin$ Rules and Re$ulations of
Repu&lic Act No. -2:: GJAn Act Allo/in$ 0lle$iti"ate Children to Ese the Surna"e of their (ather,
A"endin$ for the Purpose, Article ,2@ of )5ecutive !rder No. 20-, other/ise ;no/n as the W(a"il#
Code of the PhilippinesILHC provides that6

Rule 2. Re8uire"ents for the Child to Ese the Surna"e of the (ather

2., (or Airths Not Net Re$istered

2.,., The ille$iti"ate child shall use the surna"e of the father if a pu&lic docu"ent is
e5ecuted &# the father, either at the &ack of the Certificate of =ive Airth or in a
separate docu"ent.

2.,.2 0f ad"ission of paternit# is "ade throu$h a private hand/ritten instru"ent, the child
shall use the surna"e of the father, provided the re$istration is supported &# the
follo/in$ docu"ents6

a. AES(
G4H
&. Consent of the child, if ,4 #ears old and over at the ti"e of the filin$ of the
docu"ent.
c. An# t/o of the follo/in$ docu"ents sho/in$ clearl# the paternit# &et/een the
father and the child6

,. )"plo#"ent records
2. SSSMGS0S records
3. 0nsurance
9. Certification of "e"&ership in an# or$ani>ation
:. State"ent of Assets and =ia&ilit#
@. 0nco"e Ta5 Return B0TRC

0n su""ar#, the child cannot use the surna"e of his father &ecause he /as &orn out of /edlock and the
father unfortunatel# died prior to his &irth and has no "ore capacit# to ackno/led$e his paternit# to the
child Beither throu$h the &ack of +unicipal (or" No. ,02 T Affidavit of Ackno/led$"entMAd"ission of
Paternit# T or the Authorit# to Ese the Surna"e of the (atherC. BEnderscorin$ suppliedC


'enie and the child pro"ptl# filed a co"plaint
G-H
for in1unctionMre$istration of na"e a$ainst respondent &efore
the Re$ional Trial Court of Antipolo Cit#, docketed as SCA Case No. 0@-:3-, /hich /as raffled to Aranch 23 thereof. The
co"plaint alle$ed that, inter alia, the denial of re$istration of the childIs na"e is a violation of his ri$ht to use the surna"e of his
deceased father under A4*0-3e 1%$ o/ *+e Fa1036 Code, a. a1ended 76 Re2u730- A-* @R.A.A No. 9255,
G,0H
/hich provides6

Article ,2@. 0lle$iti"ate children shall use the surna"e and shall &e under the parental authorit#
of their "other, and shall &e entitled to support in confor"it# /ith this Code. %o/ever, ille$iti"ate children
"a# use the surna"e of their father if their filiation has &een e5pressl# reco$ni>ed &# the father throu$h
the record of &irth appearin$ in the civil re$ister, o4 ,+en an ad10..0on 0n a 2u730- do-u1en*
o4 240;a*e +and,40**en 0n.*4u1en* is "ade &# the father. Provided, the father has the ri$ht to institute an
action &efore the re$ular courts to prove non-filiation durin$ his lifeti"e. The le$iti"e of each ille$iti"ate
child shall consist of one-half of the le$iti"e of a le$iti"ate child. B)"phasis and underscorin$ suppliedC

The# "aintained that the Auto&io$raph# e5ecuted &# *o"ini8ue constitutes an ad"ission of paternit# in a Jprivate hand/ritten
instru"entL /ithin the conte"plation of the a&ove-8uoted provision of la/.

(or failure to file a responsive pleadin$ or ans/er despite service of su""ons, respondent /as declared in default.

'enie thereupon presented evidence ex7parte. She testified on the circu"stances of her co""on-la/ relationship
/ith *o"ini8ue and affir"ed her declarations in her AES( that durin$ his lifeti"e, he had ackno/led$ed his #et un&orn child.
G,,H
She offered *o"ini8ueIs hand/ritten Auto&io$raph# B)5hi&it JALC as her docu"entar# evidence-in-chief.
G,2H
*o"ini8ueIs lone
&rother, 'oseph Autch S.T. A8uino, also testified, corro&oratin$ 'enieIs declarations.
G,3H

A# *ecision
G,9H
of April 2:, 2002, the trial court dis"issed the co"plaint Jfor lack of cause of actionL as the
Auto&io$raph# /as unsi$ned, citin$ para$raph 2.2, Rule 2 B*efinition of Ter"sC ofAd10n0.*4a*0;e O4de4 @A.O.A No. 1, Se40e.
o/ 2''# @*+e Ru3e. and Re5u3a*0on. Go;e4n0n5 *+e I123e1en*a*0on o/ R.A. 9255A /hich defines Jprivate hand/ritten
docu"entL throu$h /hich a father "a# ackno/led$e an ille$iti"ate child as follo/s6

2.2 Private hand/ritten instru"ent T an instru"ent e5ecuted in the hand/ritin$ of the father
and dul# si$ned &# hi" /here he e5pressl# reco$ni>es paternit# to the child. BEnderscorin$ suppliedC

The trial court held that even if *o"ini8ue /as the author of the hand/ritten Auto&io$raph#, the sa"e does not contain an#
e5press reco$nition of paternit#.

%ence, this direct resort to the Court via Petition for Revie/ on Certiorari raisin$ this purel# le$al issue of6

?%)T%)R !R N!T T%) ENS0GN)* %AN*?R0TT)N STAT)+)NT !( T%) *)C)AS)*
(AT%)R !( +0N!R C%R0ST0AN *)=A CREU CAN A) C!NS0*)R)* AS A R)C!GN0T0!N !(
PAT)RN0TN 0N A JPR0DAT) %AN*?R0TT)N 0NSTRE+)NTL ?0T%0N T%) C!NT)+P=AT0!N !(
ART0C=) ,2@ !( T%) (A+0=N C!*), AS A+)N*)* AN R.A. -2::, ?%0C% )NT0T=)S T%) SA0*
+0N!R T! ES) %0S (AT%)RIS SERNA+).
G,:H
BEnderscorin$ suppliedC

Petitioners contend that Article ,2@ of the (a"il# Code, as a"ended, does not e5pressl# re8uire that the private
hand/ritten instru"ent containin$ the putative fatherIs ad"ission of paternit# "ust &e si$ned &# hi". The# add that the
deceasedIs hand/ritten Auto&io$raph#, thou$h unsi$ned &# hi", is sufficient, for the re8uire"ent in the a&ove-8uoted
para$raph 2.2 of the Ad"inistrative !rder that the ad"issionMreco$nition "ust &e Jdul# si$nedL &# the father is void as it
Jundul# e5pandedL the earlier-8uoted provision of Article ,2@ of the (a"il# Code.
G,@H

Petitioners further contend that the trial court erred in not findin$ that *o"ini8ueIs hand/ritten
Auto&io$raph# contains a Jclear and un"istaka&leL reco$nition of the childIs paternit#.
G,2H

0n its Co""ent, the !ffice of the Solicitor General B!SGC su&"its that respondentIs position, as affir"ed &# the trial
court, is in consonance /ith the la/ and thus pra#s for the dis"issal of the petition. 0t further su&"its that *o"ini8ueIs
Auto&io$raph# J"erel# ackno/led$ed 'enieIs pre$nanc# &ut not GhisH paternit# of the child she /as carr#in$ in her /o"&.L
G,4H

Article ,2@ of the (a"il# Code, as a"ended &# R.A. -2::, per"its an ille$iti"ate child to use the surna"e of hisMher
father if the latter had e5pressl# reco$ni>ed hi"Mher as his offsprin$ throu$h therecord of &irth appearin$ in the civil
re$ister, o4 throu$h an ad"ission "ade in a pu&lic or private hand/ritten instru"ent. The reco$nition "ade in an# of these
docu"ents is, in itself, a consu""ated act of ackno/led$"ent of the childIs paternit#7 hence, no separate action for 1udicial
approval is necessar#.
G,-H

Article ,2@ of the (a"il# Code, as a"ended, does not, indeed, e5plicitl# state that the private hand/ritten instru"ent
ackno/led$in$ the childIs paternit# "ust &e si$ned &# the putative father. This provision "ust, ho/ever, &e read in con1unction
/ith related provisions of the (a"il# Code /hich re8uire that reco$nition &# the father "ust &ear his si$nature, thus6

Art. ,2:. 0lle$iti"ate children "a# esta&lish their ille$iti"ate filiation in the sa"e /a# and on the
sa"e evidence as le$iti"ate children.

5 5 5 5

Art. ,22. The filiation of legitimate children is esta&lished &# an# of the follo/in$6

B,C The record of &irth appearin$ in the civil re$ister or a final 1ud$"ent7 or

B2C An ad"ission of le$iti"ate filiation in a pu&lic docu"ent or a private hand/ritten
instru"ent and .05ned &# the parent concerned.

5 5 5 5 B)"phasis and underscorin$ suppliedC


That a father /ho ackno/led$es paternit# of a child throu$h a /ritten instru"ent "ust affi5 his si$nature thereon is
clearl# i"plied in Article ,2@ of the (a"il# Code. Para$raph 2.2, Rule 2 of A.!. No. ,, Series of 2009, "erel# articulated such
re8uire"ent7 it did not Jundul# e5pandL the i"port of Article ,2@ as clai"ed &# petitioners.

0n the present case, ho/ever, special circu"stances e5ist to hold that *o"ini8ueIs Auto&io$raph#, thou$h unsi$ned
&# hi", substantiall satisfies the re8uire"ent of the la/.

3irst, *o"ini8ue died a&out t/o "onths prior to the childIs &irth. 0econd, the relevant "atters in the Auto&io$raph#,
un8uestiona&l# hand/ritten &# *o"ini8ue, correspond to the facts culled fro" the testi"onial evidence 'enie proffered.
G20H
Third, 'enieIs testi"on# is corro&orated &# the Affidavit of Ac!no,ledgment of *o"ini8ueIs father *o"in$o A8uino and
testi"on# of his &rother 'oseph Autch A8uino /hose hereditar# ri$hts could &e affected &# the re$istration of the 8uestioned
reco$nition of the child. These circu"stances indicatin$ *o"ini8ueIs paternit# of the child $ive life to his state"ents in his
Auto&io$raph# that J')N0) *)=A CREUL is J+N ?0()L as J?) ()== 0N =!D) ?0T% )AC% !T%)RL and JN!? S%) 0S
PR)GNANT AN* (!R T%AT ?) =0D) T!G)T%)R.L

0n 1errera v. Alba,
G2,H
the Court su""ari>ed the la/s, rules, and 1urisprudence on esta&lishin$ filiation, discoursin$ in
relevant part6


$a,s, Rules, and 'urisprudence
*stablishing 3iliation

The relevant provisions of the (a"il# Code provide as follo/s6

ART. ,2:. 0lle$iti"ate children "a# esta&lish their ille$iti"ate filiation in the sa"e /a# and on
the sa"e evidence as le$iti"ate children.

5 5 5 5

ART. ,22. The filiation of le$iti"ate children is esta&lished &# an# of the follo/in$6

B,C The record of &irth appearin$ in the civil re$ister or a final 1ud$"ent7 or

B2C An ad"ission of le$iti"ate filiation in a pu&lic docu"ent or a private hand/ritten
instru"ent and si$ned &# the parent concerned.

0n the a&sence of the fore$oin$ evidence, the le$iti"ate filiation shall &e proved &#6

B,C The open and continuous possession of the status of a le$iti"ate child7 or

B2C An# other "eans allo/ed &# the Rules of Court and special la/s.

The Rules on )vidence include provisions on pedi$ree. The relevant sections of Rule ,30 provide6

S)C. 3-. Act or declaration a&out pedi$ree. S The act or declaration of a person deceased, or
una&le to testif#, in respect to the pedi$ree of another person related to hi" &# &irth or "arria$e, "a# &e
received in evidence /here it occurred &efore the controvers#, and the relationship &et/een the t/o
persons is sho/n &# evidence other than such act or declaration. The /ord pedi$ree includes
relationship, fa"il# $enealo$#, &irth, "arria$e, death, the dates /hen and the places /here these facts
occurred, and the na"es of the relatives. 0t e"&races also facts of fa"il# histor# inti"atel# connected /ith
pedi$ree.

S)C. 90. (a"il# reputation or tradition re$ardin$ pedi$ree. S The reputation or tradition
e5istin$ in a fa"il# previous to the controvers#, in respect to the pedi$ree of an# one of its "e"&ers, "a#
&e received in evidence if the /itness testif#in$ thereon &e also a "e"&er of the fa"il#, either &#
consan$uinit# or affinit#. )ntries in fa"il# &i&les or other fa"il# &ooks or charts, en$ravin$ on rin$s, fa"il#
portraits and the like, "a# &e received as evidence of pedi$ree.

This Court.s rulin$s further specif# /hat incri"inatin$ acts are accepta&le as evidence to
esta&lish filiation. 0n Pe $im v. CA, a case petitioner often cites, /e stated that the issue of paternit# still
has to &e resolved &# such-on;en*0ona3 e;0den-e a. *+e 4e3e;an* 0n-4010na*0n5 ;e47a3 and ,40**en
a-*. 76 *+e 2u*a*0;e /a*+e4. Ender Article 224 of the Ne/ Civil Code, voluntar# reco$nition &# a parent
shall &e "ade in the record of &irth, a /ill, a state"ent &efore a court of record, or in an6 au*+en*0-
,40*0n5. To 7e e//e-*0;e, *+e -3a01 o/ /030a*0on 1u.* 7e 1ade 76 *+e 2u*a*0;e /a*+e4 +01.e3/ and *+e
,40*0n5 1u.* 7e *+e ,40*0n5 o/ *+e 2u*a*0;e /a*+e4. A notarial a$ree"ent to support a child /hose filiation
is ad"itted &# the putative father /as considered accepta&le evidence. =etters to the "other vo/in$ to &e
a $ood father to the child and pictures of the putative father cuddlin$ the child on various occasions,
to$ether /ith the certificate of live &irth, proved filiation. %o/ever, a student per"anent record, a /ritten
consent to a father.s operation, or a "arria$e contract /here the putative father $ave consent, cannot &e
taken as authentic /ritin$. Standin$ alone, neither a certificate of &aptis" nor fa"il# pictures are sufficient
to esta&lish filiation. B)"phasis and underscorin$ supplied.C


0n the case at &ar, there is no dispute that the earlier 8uoted state"ents in *o"ini8ueIs Auto&io$raph# have &een "ade
and /ritten &# hi". Taken to$ether /ith the other relevant facts e5tant herein Tthat *o"ini8ue, durin$ his lifeti"e, and 'enie
/ere livin$ to$ether as co""on-la/ spouses for several "onths in 200: at his parentsI house in Pulan$-lupa, *ulu"&a#an,
Teresa, Ri>al7 she /as pre$nant /hen *o"ini8ue died on Septe"&er 9, 200:7 and a&out t/o "onths after his death, 'enie
$ave &irth to the child T the# sufficientl# esta&lish that the child of 'enie is *o"ini8ueIs.

0n vie/ of the pronounce"ents herein "ade, the Court sees it fit to adopt the follo/in$ rules respectin$ the
re8uire"ent of affi5in$ the si$nature of the ackno/led$in$ parent in an# private hand/ritten instru"ent /herein an ad"ission
of filiation of a le$iti"ate or ille$iti"ate child is "ade6

,C ?here the private hand/ritten instru"ent is the lone piece of evidence su&"itted to prove filiation, there should
&e strict co"pliance /ith the re8uire"ent that the sa"e "ust &e si$ned &# the ackno/led$in$ parent7 and

2C ?here the private hand/ritten instru"ent is acco"panied &# other relevant and co"petent evidence, it suffices
that the clai" of filiation therein &e sho/n to have &een "ade and hand/ritten &# the ackno/led$in$ parent as it is "erel#
corro&orative of such other evidence.

!ur la/s instruct that the /elfare of the child shall &e the Jpara"ount considerationL in resolvin$ 8uestions affectin$
hi".
G22H
Article 3B,C of the Enited Nations Convention on the Ri$hts of a Child of /hich the Philippines is a si$nator# is si"ilarl#
e"phatic6

Article 3

,. 0n all actions concernin$ children, /hether undertaken &# pu&lic or private social /elfare
institutions, courts of la/, ad"inistrative authorities or le$islative &odies, the &est interests of the child shall
&e a pri"ar# consideration.
G23H
BEnderscorin$ suppliedC


0t is thus JBtChe polic# of the (a"il# Code to li&erali>e the rule on the investi$ation of the paternit# and filiation of
children, especiall# of ille$iti"ate children 5 5 5.L
G29H
Too, JBtChe State as parens patriae affords special protection to children
fro" a&use, e5ploitation and other conditions pre1udicial to their develop"ent.L
G2:H


0n the e#es of societ#, a child /ith an unkno/n father &ears the sti$"a of dishonor. 0t is to petitioner "inor childIs
&est interests to allo/ hi" to &ear the surna"e of the no/ deceased *o"ini8ue and enter it in his &irth certificate.

CHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTE. The Cit# Civil Re$istrar of Antipolo Cit# is *0R)CT)* to
i""ediatel# en*e4 the surna"e of the late Christian *o"ini8ue Sto. To"as A9u0no as thesurna"e of petitioner "inor Christian
dela Cru> in his Certificate of =ive Airth, and 4e-o4d the sa"e in the Re$ister of Airths.

SO ORERE.
G.R. No. 1&125& Ma4-+ 1&, 2'1'
(EN>HUR NEPOMUCENO, Petitioner,
vs.
ARH(ENCEL ANN LOPED, 4e24e.en*ed 76 +e4 1o*+e4 ARACELI LOPED, Respondent.
* ) C 0 S 0 ! N
CARPIO MORALES, J.:
Respondent Arh&encel Ann =ope> BArh&encelC, represented &# her "other Araceli =ope> BAraceliC, filed a Co"plaint
,
/ith the
Re$ional Trial Court BRTCC of Caloocan Cit# for reco$nition and support a$ainst Aen-%ur Nepo"uceno BpetitionerC.
Aorn on 'une 4, ,---, Arh&encel clai"ed to have &een &e$otten out of an e5tra"arital affair of petitioner /ith Araceli7 that
petitioner refused to affi5 his si$nature on her Certificate of Airth7 and that, &# a hand/ritten note dated Au$ust 2, ,---,
petitioner nevertheless o&li$ated hi"self to $ive her financial support in the a"ount of P,,:00 on the ,:th and 30th da#s of
each "onth &e$innin$ Au$ust ,:, ,---.
Ar$uin$ that her filiation to petitioner /as esta&lished &# the hand/ritten note, Arh&encel pra#ed that petitioner &e ordered to6
B,C reco$ni>e her as his child, B2C $ive her support pendente lite in the increased a"ount of P4,000 a "onth, and B3C $ive her
ade8uate "onthl# financial support until she reaches the a$e of "a1orit#.
Petitioner countered that Araceli had not proven that he /as the father of Arh&encel7 and that he /as onl# forced to e5ecute the
hand/ritten note on account of threats co"in$ fro" the National PeopleIs Ar"#.
2
A# !rder of 'ul# 9, 200,,
3
Aranch ,30 of the Caloocan RTC, on the &asis of petitionerIs hand/ritten note /hich it treated as
contractual support since the issue of Arh&encelIs filiation had #et to &e deter"ined durin$ the hearin$ on the "erits, $ranted
Arh&encelIs pra#er for support pendente lite in the a"ount of P3,000 a "onth.
After Arh&encel rested her case, petitioner filed a de"urrer to evidence /hich the trial court $ranted &# !rder dated 'une 2,
200@,
9
/hereupon the case /as dis"issed for insufficienc# of evidence.
The trial court held that, a"on$ other thin$s, Arh&encelIs Certificate of Airth /as not pri"a facie evidence of her filiation to
petitioner as it did not &ear petitionerIs si$nature7 that petitionerIs hand/ritten undertakin$ to provide support did not contain a
cate$orical ackno/led$"ent that Arh&encel is his child7 and that there /as no sho/in$ that petitioner perfor"ed an# overt act
of ackno/led$"ent of Arh&encel as his ille$iti"ate child after the e5ecution of the note.
!n appeal &# Arh&encel, the Court of Appeals, &# *ecision of 'ul# 20, 2002,
:
reversed the trial courtIs decision, declared
Arh&encel to &e petitionerIs ille$iti"ate dau$hter and accordin$l# ordered petitioner to $ive Arh&encel financial support in the
increased a"ount of P9,000 ever# ,:th and 30th da#s of the "onth, or a total of P4,000 a "onth.
The appellate court found that fro" petitionerIs pa#"ent of AraceliIs hospital &ills /hen she $ave &irth to Arh&encel and his
su&se8uent co""it"ent to provide "onthl# financial support, the onl# lo$ical conclusion to &e dra/n /as that he /as
Arh&encelIs father7 that petitioner "erel# acted in &ad faith in o"ittin$ a state"ent of paternit# in his hand/ritten undertakin$ to
provide financial support7 and that the a"ount of P4,000 a "onth /as reasona&le for Arh&encelIs su&sistence and not
&urdenso"e for petitioner in vie/ of his inco"e.
%is +otion for Reconsideration havin$ &een denied &# Resolution dated 'anuar# 3, 2004,
@
petitioner co"es &efore this Court
throu$h the present Petition for Revie/ on Certiorari.
2
Petitioner contends that no/here in the docu"entar# evidence presented &# Araceli is an e5plicit state"ent "ade &# hi" that
he is the father of Arh&encel7 that a&sent reco$nition or ackno/led$"ent, ille$iti"ate children are not entitled to support fro"
the putative parent7 that the supposed pa#"ent "ade &# hi" of AraceliIs hospital &ills /as neither alle$ed in the co"plaint nor
proven durin$ the trial7 and that Arh&encelIs clai" of paternit# and filiation /as not esta&lished &# clear and convincin$
evidence.
Arh&encel avers in her Co""ent that petitioner raises 8uestions of fact /hich the appellate court had alread# addressed, alon$
/ith the issues raised in the present petition.
4
The petition is i"pressed /ith "erit.
The relevant provisions of the (a"il# Code
-
that treat of the ri$ht to support are Articles ,-9 to ,-@, thus6
Article ,-9. Support co"pro"ises ever#thin$ indispensa&le for sustenance, d/ellin$, clothin$, "edical attendance, education
and transportation, in keepin$ /ith the financial capacit# of the fa"il#.8a,ph98
The education of the person entitled to &e supported referred to in the precedin$ para$raph shall include his schoolin$ or
trainin$ for so"e profession, trade or vocation, even &e#ond the a$e of "a1orit#. Transportation shall include e5penses in $oin$
to and fro" school, or to and fro" place of /ork.
Article ,-:. Su&1ect to the provisions of the succeedin$ articles, the follo/in$ are o&li$ed to support each other to the /hole
e5tent set forth in the precedin$ article6
,. The spouses7
2. =e$iti"ate ascendants and descendants7
3. Parents and their le$iti"ate children and the le$iti"ate and ille$iti"ate children of the latter7
9. Parents and their ille$iti"ate children and the le$iti"ate and ille$iti"ate children of the latter7 and
:. =e$iti"ate &rothers and sisters, /hether of the full or half-&lood.
Article ,-@. Arothers and sisters not le$iti"atel# related, /hether of the full or half-&lood, are like/ise &ound to support each
other to the full e5tent set forth in Article ,-9, e5cept onl# /hen the need for support of the &rother or sister, &ein$ of a$e, is due
to a cause i"puta&le to the clai"ant.s fault or ne$li$ence. Be"phasis and underscorin$ suppliedC
Arh&encelIs de"and for support, &ein$ &ased on her clai" of filiation to petitioner as his ille$iti"ate dau$hter, falls under Article
,-:B9C. As such, her entitle"ent to support fro" petitioner is dependent on the deter"ination of her filiation.
%errera v. Al&a
,0
su""ari>es the la/s, rules, and 1urisprudence on esta&lishin$ filiation, discoursin$ in relevant part as follo/s6
=a/s, Rules, and 'urisprudence
)sta&lishin$ (iliation
The relevant provisions of the (a"il# Code provide as follo/s6
ART. ,2:. 0lle$iti"ate children "a# esta&lish their ille$iti"ate filiation in the sa"e /a# and on the sa"e evidence as le$iti"ate
children.
5 5 5 5
ART. ,22. The filiation of le$iti"ate children is esta&lished &# an# of the follo/in$6
B,C The record of &irth appearin$ in the civil re$ister or a final 1ud$"ent7 or
B2C An ad"ission of le$iti"ate filiation in a pu&lic docu"ent or a private hand/ritten instru"ent and si$ned &# the
parent concerned.
0n the a&sence of the fore$oin$ evidence, the le$iti"ate filiation shall &e proved &#6
B,C The open and continuous possession of the status of a le$iti"ate child7 or
B2C An# other "eans allo/ed &# the Rules of Court and special la/s.
The Rules on )vidence include provisions on pedi$ree. The relevant sections of Rule ,30 provide6
S)C. 3-. Act or declaration a&out pedi$ree. S The act or declaration of a person deceased, or una&le to testif#, in respect to
the pedi$ree of another person related to hi" &# &irth or "arria$e, "a# &e received in evidence /here it occurred &efore the
controvers#, and the relationship &et/een the t/o persons is sho/n &# evidence other than such act or declaration. The /ord
pedi$ree includes relationship, fa"il# $enealo$#, &irth, "arria$e, death, the dates /hen and the places /here these facts
occurred, and the na"es of the relatives. 0t e"&races also facts of fa"il# histor# inti"atel# connected /ith pedi$ree.
S)C. 90. (a"il# reputation or tradition re$ardin$ pedi$ree. S The reputation or tradition e5istin$ in a fa"il# previous to the
controvers#, in respect to the pedi$ree of an# one of its "e"&ers, "a# &e received in evidence if the /itness testif#in$ thereon
&e also a "e"&er of the fa"il#, either &# consan$uinit# or affinit#. )ntries in fa"il# &i&les or other fa"il# &ooks or charts,
en$ravin$ on rin$s, fa"il# portraits and the like, "a# &e received as evidence of pedi$ree.
This Court.s rulin$s further specif# /hat incri"inatin$ acts are accepta&le as evidence to esta&lish filiation. 0n Pe =i" v. CA, a
case petitioner often cites, /e stated that the issue of paternit# still has to &e resolved &# suchconventional evidence as the
relevant incri"inatin$ ver&al and /ritten acts &# the putative father. Ender Article 224 of the Ne/ Civil Code, voluntar#
reco$nition &# a parent shall &e "ade in the record of &irth, a /ill, a state"ent &efore a court of record, or in an# authentic
/ritin$. To &e effective, the clai" of filiation "ust &e "ade &# the putative father hi"self and the /ritin$ "ust &e the /ritin$ of
the putative father. A notarial a$ree"ent to support a child /hose filiation is ad"itted &# the putative father /as considered
accepta&le evidence. =etters to the "other vo/in$ to &e a $ood father to the child and pictures of the putative father cuddlin$
the child on various occasions, to$ether /ith the certificate of live &irth, proved filiation. %o/ever, a student per"anent record, a
/ritten consent to a father.s operation, or a "arria$e contract /here the putative father $ave consent, cannot &e taken as
authentic /ritin$. Standin$ alone, neither a certificate of &aptis" nor fa"il# pictures are sufficient to esta&lish filiation.
Be"phasis and underscorin$ suppliedC
0n the present case, Arh&encel relies, in the "ain, on the hand/ritten note e5ecuted &# petitioner /hich reads6
+anila, Au$. 2, ,---
0, Aen-%ur C. Nepo"uceno, here&# undertake to $ive and provide financial support in the a"ount of P,,:00.00 ever# fifteen
and thirtieth da# of each "onth for a total of P3,000.00 a "onth startin$ Au$. ,:, ,---, to Ahr&encel Ann =ope>, presentl# in
the custod# of her "other Araceli =ope> /ithout the necessit# of de"and, su&1ect to ad1ust"ent later dependin$ on the needs
of the child and "# inco"e.
The a&ove8uoted note does not contain an# state"ent /hatsoever a&out Arh&encelIs filiation to petitioner. 0t is, therefore, not
/ithin the a"&it of Article ,22B2C vis-X-vis Article ,2: of the (a"il# Code /hich ad"its as co"petent evidence of ille$iti"ate
filiation an ad"ission of filiation in a private hand/ritten instru"ent si$ned &# the parent concerned.
The note cannot also &e accorded the sa"e /ei$ht as the notarial a$ree"ent to support the child referred to in %errera. (or it
is not even notari>ed. And %errera instructs that the notarial a$ree"ent "ust &e acco"panied &# the putative fatherIs
ad"ission of filiation to &e an accepta&le evidence of filiation. %ere, ho/ever, not onl# has petitioner not ad"itted filiation
throu$h conte"poraneous actions. %e has consistentl# denied it.
The onl# other docu"entar# evidence su&"itted &# Arh&encel, a cop# of her Certificate of Airth,
,,
has no pro&ative value to
esta&lish filiation to petitioner, the latter not havin$ si$ned the sa"e.
At &otto", all that Arh&encel reall# has is petitionerIs hand/ritten undertakin$ to provide financial support to her /hich, /ithout
"ore, fails to esta&lish her clai" of filiation. The Court is "indful that the &est interests of the child in cases involvin$ paternit#
and filiation should &e advanced. 0t is, ho/ever, 1ust as "indful of the distur&ance that unfounded paternit# suits cause to the
privac# and peace of the putative fatherIs le$iti"ate fa"il#.
?%)R)(!R), the petition is GRANT)*. The Court of Appeals *ecision of 'ul# 20, 2002 is S)T AS0*). The !rder dated 'une
2, 200@ of Aranch ,30 of the Caloocan Cit# RTC dis"issin$ the co"plaint for insufficienc# of evidence is R)0NSTAT)*.
S! !R*)R)*.
HG.R. No. 1"&9$1. Ma4-+ %, 2''2I
CILLIAM LIYAO, JR., 4e24e.en*ed 76 +0. 1o*+e4 Co4a?on Ga4-0a, petitioner, vs. JUANITA TANHOTI>LIYAO, PEARL
MARGARET L. TAN, TITA ROSE L. TAN AN LINA CHRISTINA LIYAO, respondents.
E C I S I O N
E LEON, JR., J.!
Aefore us is a petition for revie/ on certiorari assailin$ the decision dated 'une 9, ,--- of the Court of Appeals in CA-
G.R. C.D. No. 9:3-9
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/hich reversed the decision of the Re$ional Trial Court BRTCC of Pasi$, +etro +anila, Aranch ,@2 in
declarin$ ?illia" =i#ao, 'r. as the ille$iti"ate BspuriousC son of the deceased ?illia" =i#ao and orderin$ 'uanita Tanhoti-=i#ao,
Pearl +ar$aret =. Tan, Tita Rose =. Tan and =inda Christina =i#ao to reco$ni>e and ackno/led$e ?illia" =i#ao, 'r. as a
co"pulsor# heir of the deceased ?illia" =i#ao and entitled to all successional ri$hts as such and to pa# the costs of the suit.
!n Nove"&er 2-,,-2@, ?illia" =i#ao, 'r., represented &# his "other Cora>on G. Garcia, filed Civil Case No. 29-93
&efore the RTC of Pasi$, Aranch ,@2 /hich is an action for co"pulsor# reco$nition as Jthe ille$iti"ate BspuriousC child of the
late ?illia" =i#aoL a$ainst herein respondents, 'uanita Tanhoti-=i#ao, Pearl +ar$aret =. Tan, Tita Rose =. Tan and =inda
Christina =i#ao.
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The co"plaint /as later a"ended to include the alle$ation that petitioner J,as in continuous possession and
en%oment of the status of the child of said /illiam $iao,L petitioner havin$ &een Jrecognized and ac!no,ledged as such child
b the decedent during his lifetime.
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The facts as alle$ed &# petitioner are as follo/s6
Cora>on G. Garcia is le$all# "arried to &ut livin$ separatel# fro" Ra"on +. Nulo for "ore than ten B,0C #ears at the ti"e
of the institution of the said civil case. Cora>on coha&ited /ith the late ?illia" =i#ao fro" ,-@: up to the ti"e of ?illia"Is
unti"el# de"ise on *ece"&er 2, ,-2:. The# lived to$ether in the co"pan# of Cora>onIs t/o B2C children fro" her su&sistin$
"arria$e, na"el#6
)nri8ue and Aernadette, &oth surna"ed Nulo, in a succession of rented houses in Fue>on Cit# and +anila. This /as /ith
the kno/led$e of ?illia" =i#aoIs le$iti"ate children, Tita Rose =. Tan and =inda Christina =i#ao-!rti$a, fro" his su&sistin$
"arria$e /ith 'uanita Tanhoti =i#ao. Tita Rose and Christina /ere &oth e"plo#ed at the (ar )ast Realt# 0nvest"ent, 0nc. of
/hich Cora>on and ?illia" /ere then vice president and president, respectivel#.
So"eti"e in ,-29, Cora>on &ou$ht a lot fro" !rti$as and Co. /hich re8uired the si$nature of her hus&and, Ra"on Nulo,
to sho/ his consent to the aforesaid sale. She failed to secure his si$nature and, had never &een in touch /ith hi" despite the
necessit# to "eet hi". Epon the advice of ?illia" =i#ao, the sale of the parcel of land located at the Dalle Derde Su&division
/as re$istered under the na"e of (ar )ast Realt# 0nvest"ent, 0nc.
!n 'une -, ,-2:, Cora>on $ave &irth to ?illia" =i#ao, 'r. at the Cardinal Santos +e"orial %ospital. *urin$ her three B3C
da# sta# at the hospital, ?illia" =i#ao visited and sta#ed /ith her and the ne/ &orn &a&#, ?illia", 'r. BAill#C. All the "edical and
hospital e5penses, food and clothin$ /ere paid under the account of ?illia" =i#ao. ?illia" =i#ao even asked his confidential
secretar#, +rs. Dir$inia Rodri$ue>, to secure a cop# of Aill#Is &irth certificate. %e like/ise instructed Cora>on to open a &ank
account for Aill# /ith the Consolidated Aank and Trust Co"pan#
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and $ave /eekl# a"ounts to &e deposited therein.
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?illia"
=i#ao /ould &rin$ Aill# to the office, introduce hi" as his $ood lookin$ son and had their pictures taken to$ether.
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*urin$ the lifeti"e of ?illia" =i#ao, several pictures /ere taken sho/in$, a"on$ others, ?illia" =i#ao and Cora>on
to$ether /ith Aill#Is $odfather, (r. 'ulian Rui>, ?illia" =i#aoIs le$al staff and their /ives /hile on vacation in Aa$uio.
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Cora>on
also presented pictures in court to prove that that she usuall# acco"panied ?illia" =i#ao /hile attendin$ various social
$atherin$s and other i"portant "eetin$s.
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*urin$ the occasion of ?illia" =i#aoIs last &irthda# on Nove"&er 22, ,-2: held at
the Repu&lic Super"arket, ?illia" =i#ao e5pressl# ackno/led$ed Aill# as his son in the presence of (r. Rui>, +aurita Pasion
and other friends and said, J1e, loo! . am still oung, . can still ma!e a good loo!ing son.:
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Since &irth, Aill# had &een in
continuous possession and en1o#"ent of the status of a reco$ni>ed andMor ackno/led$ed child of ?illia" =i#ao &# the latterIs
direct and overt acts. ?illia" =i#ao supported Aill# and paid for his food, clothin$ and other "aterial needs. %o/ever, after
?illia" =i#aoIs death, it /as Cora>on /ho provided sole support to Aill# and took care of his tuition fees at =a Salle, Greenhills.
?illia" =i#ao left his personal &elon$in$s, collections, clothin$, old ne/spaper clippin$s and la"inations at the house in ?hite
Plains /here he shared his last "o"ents /ith Cora>on.
Testif#in$ for the petitioner, +aurita Pasion declared that she kne/ &oth Cora>on G. Garcia and ?illia" =i#ao /ho /ere
$odparents to her children. She used to visit Cora>on and ?illia" =i#ao fro" ,-@:-,-2:. The t/o children of Cora>on fro" her
"arria$e to Ra"on Nulo, na"el#, Aernadette and )nri8ue B0keC, to$ether /ith so"e house"aids lived /ith Cora>on and
?illia" =i#ao as one fa"il#. !n so"e occasions like &irthda#s or so"e other cele&rations, +aurita /ould sleep in the coupleIs
residence and cook for the fa"il#. *urin$ these occasions, she /ould usuall# see ?illia" =i#ao in sleepin$ clothes. ?hen
Cora>on, durin$ the latter part of ,-29, /as pre$nant /ith her child Aill#, +aurita often visited her three B3C to four B9C ti"es a
/eek in Greenhills and later on in ?hite Plains /here she /ould often see ?illia" =i#ao. Aein$ a close friend of Cora>on, she
/as at the Cardinal Santos +e"orial %ospital durin$ the &irth of Aill#. She continuousl# visited the" at ?hite Plains and kne/
that ?illia" =i#ao, /hile livin$ /ith her friend Cora>on, $ave support &# /a# of $rocer# supplies, "one# for household
e5penses and "atriculation fees for the t/o B2C older children, Aernadette and )nri8ue. *urin$ ?illia" =i#aoIs &irthda# on
Nove"&er 22, ,-2: held at the Repu&lic Super"arket !ffice, he /as carr#in$ Aill# and told ever#&od# present, includin$ his
t/o B2C dau$hters fro" his le$al "arria$e, J$oo!, this is m son, ver guapo and health.L
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%e then talked a&out his plan for
the &aptis" of Aill# &efore Christ"as. %e intended to "ake it JengrandeL and Jma!e the bells of 0an 0ebastian Church
ring.L
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Enfortunatel#, this did not happen since ?illia" =i#ao passed a/a# on *ece"&er 2, ,-2:. +aurita attended +r. =i#aoIs
funeral and helped Cora>on pack his clothes. She even reco$ni>ed a short sleeved shirt of &lue and $ra#
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/hich +r. =i#ao
/ore in a photo$raph
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as /ell as another shirt of li"e $reen
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as &elon$in$ to the deceased. A note /as also presented /ith
the follo/in$ inscriptions6 JTo Cora, $ove 3rom /illiam.L
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+aurita re"e"&ered havin$ invited the couple durin$ her "otherIs
&irthda# /here the couple had their pictures taken /hile e5hi&itin$ affectionate poses /ith one another. +aurita kne/ that
Cora>on is still "arried to Ra"on Nulo since her "arria$e has not &een annulled nor is Cora>on le$all# separated fro" her
said hus&and. %o/ever, durin$ the entire coha&itation of ?illia" =i#ao /ith Cora>on Garcia, +aurita had not seen Ra"on Nulo
or an# other "an in the house /hen she usuall# visited Cora>on.
Gloria Panopio testified that she is the o/ner of a &eaut# parlor and that she kne/ that Aill# is the son of her nei$h&ors,
?illia" =i#ao and Cora>on Garcia, the latter &ein$ one of her custo"ers. Gloria "et +r. =i#ao at Cora>onIs house in Scout
*el$ado, Fue>on Cit# in the Christ"as of ,-@:. Gloria had nu"erous occasions to see +r. =i#ao fro" ,-@@ to ,-29 and even
"ore so /hen the couple transferred to ?hite Plains, Fue>on Cit# fro" ,-29-,-2:. At the ti"e Cora>on /as conceivin$, +r.
=i#ao /as /orried that Cora>on "i$ht have another "iscarria$e so he insisted that she 1ust sta# in the house, pla# "ah1on$
and not &e &ored. Gloria tau$ht Cora>on ho/ to pla# "ah1on$ and to$ether /ith Att#. ArillantesI /ife and sister-in-la/, had
"ah1on$ sessions a"on$ the"selves. Gloria kne/ that +r. =i#ao provided Cora>on /ith a rented house, paid the salar# of the
"aids and food for Aill#. %e also $ave Cora>on financial support. Gloria kne/ that Cora>on is "arried &ut is separated fro"
Ra"on Nulo althou$h Gloria never had an# occasion to see +r. Nulo /ith Cora>on in the house /here +r. =i#ao and Cora>on
lived.
)nri8ue Garcia Nulo testified that he had not heard fro" his father, Ra"on Nulo, fro" the ti"e that the latter a&andoned
and separated fro" his fa"il#. )nri8ue /as a&out si5 B@C #ears old /hen ?illia" =i#ao started to live /ith the" up to the ti"e of
the latterIs death on *ece"&er 2, ,-2:. +r. =i#ao /as ver# supportive and fond of )nri8ueIs half &rother, Aill#. %e identified
several pictures sho/in$ +r. =i#ao carr#in$ Aill# at the house as /ell as in the office. )nri8ueIs testi"on# /as corro&orated &#
his sister, Aernadette Nulo, /ho testified that the various pictures sho/in$ +r. =i#ao carr#in$ Aill# could not have &een
superi"posed and that the ne$atives /ere in the possession of her "other, Cora>on Garcia.
Respondents, on the other hand, painted a different picture of the stor#.
=inda Christina =i#ao-!rti$a stated that her parents, ?illia" =i#ao and 'uanita Tanhoti-=i#ao, /ere le$all# "arried.
G,@H
=inda $re/ up and lived /ith her parents at San =oren>o Dilla$e, +akati, +etro +anila until she $ot "arried7 that her parents
/ere not separated le$all# or in fact and that there /as no reason /h# an# of her parents /ould institute le$al separation
proceedin$s in court. %er father lived at their house in San =oren>o Dilla$e and ca"e ho"e re$ularl#. )ven durin$ out of to/n
&usiness trips or for conferences /ith the la/#ers at the office, her father /ould chan$e his clothes at ho"e &ecause of his
personal h#$iene and ha&its. %er father reportedl# had trou&le sleepin$ in other peopleIs ho"es. =inda descri&ed hi" as ver#
conservative and a strict disciplinarian. %e &elieved that no a"ount of success /ould co"pensate for failure of a ho"e. As a
&usiness"an, he /as ver# tou$h, stron$, fou$ht for /hat he &elieved in and did not $ive up easil#. %e suffered t/o strokes
&efore the fatal attack /hich led to his death on *ece"&er 2, ,-2:. %e suffered a stroke at the office so"eti"e in April-+a#
,-29 and /as attended &# *r. Santia$o Co. %e then sta#ed in the house for t/o B2C to three B3C "onths for his therap# and
acupuncture treat"ent. %e could not talk, "ove, /alk, /rite or si$n his na"e. 0n the "eanti"e, =inda and her sister, Tita Rose
=i#ao-Tan, ran the office. She handled the collection of rents /hile her sister referred le$al "atters to their la/#ers. ?illia"
=i#ao /as &edridden and had personall# chan$ed. %e /as not active in &usiness and had dietar# restrictions. +r. =i#ao also
suffered a "ilder stroke durin$ the latter part of Septe"&er to !cto&er ,-29. %e sta#ed ho"e for t/o B2C to three B3C da#s and
/ent &ack to /ork. %e felt depressed, ho/ever, and /as easil# &ored. %e did not put in lon$ hours in the office unlike &efore
and tried to spend "ore ti"e /ith his fa"il#.
=inda testified that she kne/ Cora>on Garcia is still "arried to Ra"on Nulo. Cora>on /as not le$all# separated fro" her
hus&and and the records fro" the =ocal Civil Re$istrar do not indicate that the couple o&tained an# annul"ent
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of their
"arria$e. !nce in ,-23, =inda chanced upon Ra"on Nulo pickin$ up Cora>on Garcia at the co"pan# $ara$e. 0""ediatel#
after the death of =indaIs father, Cora>on /ent to =indaIs office for the return of the for"erIs alle$ed invest"ents /ith the (ar
)ast Realt# 0nvest"ent, 0nc. includin$ a parcel of land sold &# !rti$as and Co"pan#. =inda added that Cora>on, /hile still a
Dice-President of the co"pan#, /as a&le to take out docu"ents, clothes and several la"inated pictures of ?illia" =i#ao fro"
the office. There /as one instance /hen she /as told &# the $uards, J)rs. +ulo is leaving and ta!ing out things again.L
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=inda
then instructed the $uards to &rin$ +rs. Nulo to the office upstairs &ut her sister, Tita Rose, decided to let Cora>on Garcia $o.
=inda did not reco$ni>e an# article of clothin$ /hich &elon$ed to her father after havin$ &een sho/n three B3C lar$e suit cases
full of "enIs clothes, under/ear, s/eaters, shorts and pa1a"as.
Tita Rose =i#ao-Tan testified that her parents /ere le$all# "arried and had never &een separated. The# resided at No. 2,
%ernande> Street, San =oren>o Dilla$e, +akati up to the ti"e of her fatherIs death on *ece"&er 2, ,-2:.
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%er father suffered
t/o B2C "inor cardio-vascular arrests BCDAC prior to his death. *urin$ the first heart attack so"eti"e &et/een April and +a#
,-29, his speech and hands /ere affected and he had to sta# ho"e for t/o B2C to three B3C "onths under strict "edication,
takin$ aldomet, serpadil and cifromet /hich /ere prescri&ed &# *r. Aonifacio Nap, for hi$h &lood pressure and cholesterol level
control.
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Tita Rose testified that after the death of +r. =i#ao, Cora>on Garcia /as paid the a"ount of !ne %undred Thousand
Pesos BP,00,000.00C representin$ her invest"ent in the (ar )ast Realt# 0nvest"ent 0nc. Tita Rose also stated that her fa"il#
never received an# for"al de"and that the# reco$ni>e a certain ?illia" =i#ao, 'r. as an ille$iti"ate son of her father, ?illia"
=i#ao. After assu"in$ the position of President of the co"pan#, Tita Rose did not co"e across an# check si$ned &# her late
father representin$ pa#"ent to lessors as rentals for the house occupied &# Cora>on Garcia. Tita Rose added that the
la"inated photo$raphs presented &# Cora>on Garcia are the personal collection of the deceased /hich /ere displa#ed at the
latterIs office.
The last /itness /ho testified for the respondents /as Ra"on Pineda, driver and &od#$uard of ?illia" =i#ao fro" ,-@2
to ,-29, /ho said that he usuall# reported for /ork at San =oren>o Dilla$e, +akati to pick up his &oss at 4600 oIclock in the
"ornin$. At past 2600 oIclock in the evenin$, either Carlos Pala"i$an or Serafin Dillacillo took over as ni$ht shift driver.
So"eti"e &et/een April and +a# ,-29, +r. =i#ao $ot sick. 0t /as onl# after a "onth that he /as a&le to report to the office.
Thereafter, +r. =i#ao /as not a&le to report to the office re$ularl#. So"eti"e in Septe"&er ,-29, +r. =i#ao suffered fro"
another heart attack. +r. Pineda added that as a driver and &od#$uard of +r. =i#ao, he ran errands for the latter a"on$ /hich
/as &u#in$ "edicine for hi" like capasid and aldomet. !n *ece"&er 2, ,-2:, +r. Pineda /as called inside the office of +r.
=i#ao. +r. Pineda sa/ his e"plo#er leanin$ on the ta&le. %e tried to "assa$e +r. =i#aoIs &reast and decided later to carr# and
&rin$ hi" to the hospital &ut +r. =i#ao died upon arrival thereat. +rs. =i#ao and her dau$hter, =inda =i#ao-!rti$a /ere the first
to arrive at the hospital.
+r. Pineda also declared that he kne/ Cora>on Garcia to &e one of the e"plo#ees of the Repu&lic Super"arket. People
in the office kne/ that she /as "arried. %er hus&and, Ra"on Nulo, /ould so"eti"es $o to the office. !ne ti"e, in ,-29, +r.
Pineda sa/ Ra"on Nulo at the office $ara$e as if to fetch Cora>on Garcia. +r. Nulo /ho /as also askin$ a&out cars for sale,
represented hi"self as car dealer.
?itness Pineda declared that he did not kno/ an#thin$ a&out the clai" of Cora>on. %e freel# rela#ed the infor"ation that
he sa/ +r. Nulo in the $ara$e of Repu&lic Super"arket once in ,-23 and then in ,-29 to Att#. Fuisu"&in$ /hen he /ent to the
latterIs la/ office. Aein$ the driver of +r. =i#ao for a nu"&er of #ears, Pineda said that he re"e"&ered havin$ driven the $roup
of +r. =i#ao, Att#. Astra8uillo, Att#. Arillantes, Att#. +a$no and Att#. =a$uio to Aa$uio for a vacation to$ether /ith the la/#ersI
/ives. *urin$ his e"plo#"ent, as driver of +r. =i#ao, he does not re"e"&er drivin$ for Cora>on Garcia on a trip to Aa$uio or
for activities like shoppin$.
!n Au$ust 3,, ,--3, the trial court rendered a decision, the dispositive portion of /hich reads as follo/s6
/1*R*3(R*, %udgment is hereb rendered in favor of the plaintiff and against the defendants as follo,s;
<a= Confirming the appointment of Corazon 2. 2arcia as the guardian ad litem of the minor /illiam $iao, 'r.>
<b= "eclaring the minor /illiam $iao, 'r. as the illegitimate <spurious= son of the deceased /illiam $iao>
<c= (rdering the defendants 'uanita Tanhoti $iao, Pearl )argaret $. Tan, Tita Rose $. Tan and Christian $iao, to
recognize, and ac!no,ledge the minor /illiam $iao, 'r. as a compulsor heir of the deceased /illiam $iao,
entitled to all succesional rights as such> and
<d= Costs of suit.
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0n rulin$ for herein petitioner, the trial court said it /as convinced &# preponderance of evidence that the deceased
?illia" =i#ao sired ?illia" =i#ao, 'r. since the latter /as conceived at the ti"e /hen Cora>on Garcia coha&ited /ith the
deceased. The trial court o&served that herein petitioner had &een in continuous possession and en1o#"ent of the status of a
child of the deceased &# direct and overt acts of the latter such as securin$ the &irth certificate of petitioner throu$h his
confidential secretar#, +rs. Dir$inia Rodri$ue>7 openl# and pu&licl# ackno/led$in$ petitioner as his son7 providin$ sustenance
and even introducin$ herein petitioner to his le$iti"ate children.
The Court of Appeals, ho/ever, reversed the rulin$ of the trial court sa#in$ that the la/ favors the le$iti"ac# rather than
the ille$iti"ac# of the child and Jthe presu"ption of le$iti"ac# is th/arted onl# on ethnic $round and &# proof that "arital
inti"ac# &et/een hus&and and /ife /as ph#sicall# i"possi&le at the period cited in Article 2:2 in relation to Article 2:: of the
Civil Code.L The appellate court $ave /ei$ht to the testi"onies of so"e /itnesses for the respondents that Cora>on Garcia and
Ra"on Nulo /ho /ere still le$all# "arried and have not secured le$al separation, /ere seen in each otherIs co"pan# durin$
the supposed ti"e that Cora>on coha&ited /ith the deceased ?illia" =i#ao. The appellate court further noted that the &irth
certificate and the &aptis"al certificate of ?illia" =i#ao, 'r. /hich /ere presented &# petitioner are not sufficient to esta&lish
proof of paternit# in the a&sence of an# evidence that the deceased, ?illia" =i#ao, had a hand in the preparation of said
certificates and considerin$ that his si$nature does not appear thereon. The Court of Appeals stated that neither do fa"il#
pictures constitute co"petent proof of filiation. ?ith re$ard to the pass&ook /hich /as presented as evidence for petitioner, the
appellate court o&served that there /as nothin$ in it to prove that the sa"e /as opened &# ?illia" =i#ao for either petitioner or
Cora>on Garcia since ?illia" =i#aoIs si$nature and na"e do not appear thereon.
%is "otion for reconsideration havin$ &een denied, petitioner filed the present petition.
0t "ust &e stated at the outset that &oth petitioner and respondents have raised a nu"&er of issues /hich relate solel# to
the sufficienc# of evidence presented &# petitioner to esta&lish his clai" of filiation /ith the late ?illia" =i#ao. Enfortunatel#,
&oth parties have consistentl# overlooked the real cru5 of this liti$ation6 +a# petitioner i"pu$n his o/n le$iti"ac# to &e a&le to
clai" fro" the estate of his supposed father, ?illia" =i#aoO
?e den# the present petition.
Ender the Ne/ Civil Code, a child &orn and conceived durin$ a valid "arria$e is presu"ed to &e le$iti"ate.
G22H
The
presu"ption of le$iti"ac# of children does not onl# flo/ out fro" a declaration contained in the statute &ut is &ased on the
&road principles of natural 1ustice and the supposed virtue of the "other. The presu"ption is $rounded in a polic# to protect
innocent offsprin$ fro" the odiu" of ille$iti"ac#.
G23H
The presu"ption of le$iti"ac# of the child, ho/ever, is not conclusive and conse8uentl#, "a# &e overthro/n &# evidence
to the contrar#. %ence, Article 2:: of the Ne/ Civil Code
G29H
provides6
Article ?@@. Children born after one hundred and eight das follo,ing the celebration of the marriage, and before three
hundred das follo,ing its dissolution or the separation of the spouses shall be presumed to be legitimate.
Against this presumption no evidence shall be admitted other than that of the phsical impossibilit of the husband having
access to his ,ife ,ithin the first one hundred and t,ent das of the three hundred ,hich preceded the birth of the child.
This phsical impossibilit ma be caused;
8= B the impotence of the husband>
?= B the fact that husband and ,ife ,ere living separatel in such a ,a that access ,as not possible>
A= B the serious illness of the husband.
Petitioner insists that his "other, Cora>on Garcia, had &een livin$ separatel# for ten B,0C #ears fro" her hus&and, Ra"on
Nulo, at the ti"e that she coha&ited /ith the late ?illia" =i#ao and it /as ph#sicall# i"possi&le for her to have se5ual relations
/ith Ra"on Nulo /hen petitioner /as conceived and &orn. To &olster his clai", petitioner presented a docu"ent entitled,
JContract of Separation,L
G2:H
e5ecuted and si$ned &# Ra"on Nulo indicatin$ a /aiver of ri$hts to an# and all clai"s on an#
propert# that Cora>on Garcia "i$ht ac8uire in the future.
G2@H
The fact that Cora>on Garcia had &een livin$ separatel# fro" her hus&and, Ra"on Nulo, at the ti"e petitioner /as
conceived and &orn is of no "o"ent. ?hile ph#sical i"possi&ilit# for the hus&and to have se5ual intercourse /ith his /ife is
one of the $rounds for i"pu$nin$ the le$iti"ac# of the child, it &ears e"phasis that the $rounds for i"pu$nin$ the le$iti"ac# of
the child "entioned in Article 2:: of the Civil Code "a# onl# &e invoked &# the hus&and, or in proper cases, his heirs under the
conditions set forth under Article 2@2 of the Civil Code.
G22H
0"pu$nin$ the le$iti"ac# of the child is a strictl# personal ri$ht of the
hus&and, or in e5ceptional cases, his heirs for the si"ple reason that he is the one directl# confronted /ith the scandal and
ridicule /hich the infidelit# of his /ife produces and he should &e the one to decide /hether to conceal that infidelit# or e5pose
it in vie/ of the "oral and econo"ic interest involved.
G24H
0t is onl# in e5ceptional cases that his heirs are allo/ed to contest such
le$iti"ac#. !utside of these cases, none - even his heirs - can i"pu$n le$iti"ac#7 that /ould a"ount o an insult to his "e"or#.
G2-H
0t is therefor clear that the present petition initiated &# Cora>on G. Garcia as $uardian ad litem of the then "inor, herein
petitioner, to co"pel reco$nition &# respondents of petitioner ?illia" =i#ao, 'r, as the ille$iti"ate son of the late ?illia" =i#ao
cannot prosper. 0t is settled that a child &orn /ithin a valid "arria$e is presu"ed le$iti"ate even thou$h the "other "a# have
declared a$ainst its le$iti"ac# or "a# have &een sentenced as an adulteress.
G30H
?e cannot allo/ petitioner to "aintain his
present petition and su&vert the clear "andate of the la/ that onl# the hus&and, or in e5ceptional circu"stances, his heirs,
could i"pu$n the le$iti"ac# of a child &orn in a valid and su&sistin$ "arria$e. The child hi"self cannot choose his o/n filiation.
0f the hus&and, presu"ed to &e the father does not i"pu$n the le$iti"ac# of the child, then the status of the child is fi5ed, and
the latter cannot choose to &e the child of his "otherIs alle$ed para"our. !n the other hand, if the presu"ption of le$iti"ac# is
overthro/n, the child cannot elect the paternit# of the hus&and /ho successfull# defeated the presu"ption.
G3,H
*o the acts of )nri8ue and Aernadette Nulo, the undisputed children of Cora>on Garcia /ith Ra"on Nulo, in testif#in$ for
herein petitioner a"ount to i"pu$nation of the le$iti"ac# of the latterO
?e think not. As earlier stated, it is onl# in e5ceptional cases that the heirs of the hus&and are allo/ed to contest the
le$iti"ac# of the child. There is nothin$ on the records to indicate that Ra"on Nulo has alread# passed a/a# at the ti"e of the
&irth of the petitioner nor at the ti"e of the initiation of this proceedin$s. Nota&l#, the case at &ar /as initiated &# petitioner
hi"self throu$h his "other, Cora>on Garcia, and not throu$h )nri8ue and Aernadette Nulo. 0t is settled that the legitimac of
the child can be impugned onl in a direct action brought for that purpose, b the proper parties and ,ithin the period limited b
la,.
Considerin$ the fore$oin$, /e find no reason to discuss the sufficienc# of the evidence presented &# &oth parties on the
petitionerIs clai" of alle$ed filiation /ith the late ?illia" =i#ao. 0n an# event, there is no clear, co"petent and positive evidence
presented &# the petitioner that his alle$ed father had ad"itted or reco$ni>ed his paternit#.
CHEREFORE, the instant petition is *)N0)*. The assailed decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CD No. 9:3-9 is
here&# A((0R+)*. No costs.
SO ORERE.
HG.R. No. 1#2&%%. O-*o7e4 2, 2''1I
JINJIE CHRISTIE A. E JESUS and JACFUELINE A. E JESUS, 10no4., 4e24e.en*ed 76 *+e04 1o*+e4, CAROLINA A. E
JESUS, petitioners, vs. THE ESTATE OF ECEENT JUAN GAM(OA IDON, ANGELINA K. IDON, CARLOS
IDON, FELIPE IDON, JUAN IDON, JR. and MARYLIN IDON and a. 24o2e4 2a4*0e.! FORMS MEIA CORP.,
FUA MANAGEMENT CORP., FILIPINAS PAPER SALES CO., INC. and AMITY CONSTRUCTION L
INUSTRIAL ENTERPRISES, INC., respondents.
E C I S I O N
KITUG, J.!
The petition involves the case of t/o ille$iti"ate children /ho, havin$ &een &orn in la/ful /edlock, clai" to &e the
ille$iti"ate scions of the decedent in order to enforce their respective shares in the latterIs estate under the rules on
succession.
an03o (. de Je.u. and Carolina Aves de 'esus $ot "arried on 23 Au$ust ,-@9. 0t /as durin$ this "arria$e that
'ac8ueline A. de 'esus and 'inkie Christie A. de 'esus, herein petitioners, /ere &orn, the for"er on 0, +arch ,-2- and the
latter on 0@ 'ul# ,-42.
0n a notari>ed docu"ent, dated 02 'une ,--,, 'uan G. *i>on ackno/led$ed 'ac8ueline and 'inkie de 'esus as &ein$ his
o/n ille$iti"ate children &# Carolina Aves de 'esus. 'uan G. *i>on died intestate on ,2 +arch ,--2, leavin$ &ehind
considera&le assets consistin$ of shares of stock in various corporations and so"e real propert#. 0t /as on the stren$th of his
notari>ed ackno/led$"ent that petitioners filed a co"plaint on 0, 'ul# ,--3 for JPartition /ith 0nventor# and Accountin$L of the
*i>on estate /ith the Re$ional Trial Court, Aranch 44, of Fue>on Cit#.
Respondents, the survivin$ spouse and le$iti"ate children of the decedent 'uan G. *i>on, includin$ the corporations of
/hich the deceased /as a stockholder, sou$ht the dis"issal of the case, ar$uin$ that the co"plaint, even /hile deno"inated
as &ein$ one for partition, /ould nevertheless call for alterin$ the status of petitioners fro" &ein$ the le$iti"ate children of the
spouses *anilo de 'esus and Carolina de 'esus to instead &e the ille$iti"ate children of Carolina de 'esus and deceased 'uan
*i>on. The trial court denied, due to lack of "erit, the "otion to dis"iss and the su&se8uent "otion for reconsideration on,
respectivel#, ,3 Septe"&er ,--3 and ,: (e&ruar# ,--9. Respondents assailed the denial of said "otions &efore the Court of
Appeals.
!n 20 +a# ,--9, the appellate court upheld the decision of the lo/er court and ordered the case to &e re"anded to the
trial court for further proceedin$s. 0t ruled that the veracit# of the conflictin$ assertions should &e threshed out at the trial
considerin$ that the &irth certificates presented &# respondents appeared to have effectivel# contradicted petitionersI alle$ation
of ille$iti"ac#.
!n 03 'anuar# 2000, lon$ after su&"ittin$ their ans/er, pre-trial &rief and several other "otions, respondents filed an
o"ni&us "otion, a$ain pra#in$ for the dis"issal of the co"plaint on the $round that the action instituted /as, in fact, "ade to
co"pel the reco$nition of petitioners as &ein$ the ille$iti"ate children of decedent 'uan G. *i>on and that the partition sou$ht
/as "erel# an ulterior relief once petitioners /ould have &een a&le to esta&lish their status as such heirs. 0t /as contended, in
fine, that an action for partition /as not an appropriate foru" to like/ise ascertain the 8uestion of paternit# and filiation, an
issue that could onl# &e taken up in an independent suit or proceedin$.
(indin$ credence in the ar$u"ent of respondents, the trial court, ulti"atel#, dis"issed the co"plaint of petitioners for lack
of cause of action and for &ein$ i"proper.
G,H
0t decreed that the declaration of heirship could onl# &e "ade in a special
proceedin$ inas"uch as petitioners /ere seekin$ the esta&lish"ent of a status or ri$ht.
Petitioners assail the fore$oin$ order of the trial court in the instant petition for revie/ on certiorari. Aasicall#, petitioners
"aintain that their reco$nition as &ein$ ille$iti"ate children of the decedent, e"&odied in an authentic /ritin$, is in itself
sufficient to esta&lish their status as such and does not re8uire a separate action for 1udicial approval follo/in$ the doctrine
enunciated in "ivinagracia vs. Bellosillo.
G2H
0n their co""ent, respondents su&"it that the rule in "ivinagracia &ein$ relied &# petitioners is inapplica&le to the case
&ecause there has &een no atte"pt to i"pu$n le$iti"ate filiation in "ivinagracia. 0n pra#in$ for the affir"ance of dis"issal of
the co"plaint, respondents count on the case of 0ason vs. Court of Appeals,
G3H
/hich has ruled that the issue of le$iti"ac#
cannot &e 8uestioned in a co"plaint for partition and accountin$ &ut "ust &e seasona&l# &rou$ht up in a direct action frontall#
addressin$ the issue.
The controvers# &et/een the parties has &een pendin$ for "uch too lon$, and it is ti"e that this "atter dra/s to a close.
The filiation of ille$iti"ate children, like le$iti"ate children, 0. e.*a730.+ed &# B,C the record of &irth appearin$ in the civil
re$ister or a final 1ud$"ent7 or B2C an ad"ission of le$iti"ate filiation in a pu&lic docu"ent or a private hand/ritten instru"ent
and si$ned &# the parent concerned. 0n the a&sence thereof, filiation .+a33 7e 24o;ed &# B,C the open and continuous
possession of the status of a le$iti"ate child7 or B2C an# other "eans allo/ed &# the Rules of Court and special la/s.
G9H
T+e due
4e-o5n0*0on o/ an 033e50*01a*e -+03d 0n a 4e-o4d o/ 704*+, a ,033, a .*a*e1en* 7e/o4e a -ou4* o/ 4e-o4d, o4 0n an6 au*+en*0-
,40*0n5 0., 0n 0*.e3/, a -on.u11a*ed a-* o/ a-:no,3ed51en* o/ *+e -+03d, and no /u4*+e4 -ou4* a-*0on 0. 4e9u04ed.
G:H
0n
fact, an# authentic /ritin$ is treated not 1ust a $round for co"pulsor# reco$nition7 it is in itself a voluntar# reco$nition that does
not re8uire a separate action for 1udicial approval.
G@H
C+e4e, 0n.*ead, a -3a01 /o4 4e-o5n0*0on 0. 24ed0-a*ed on o*+e4
e;0den-e 1e4e36 *end0n5 *o 24o;e 2a*e4n0*6, 0.e., ou*.0de o/ a 4e-o4d o/ 704*+, a ,033, a .*a*e1en* 7e/o4e a -ou4* o/ 4e-o4d
o4 an au*+en*0- ,40*0n5, 8ud0-0a3 a-*0on ,0*+0n *+e a2230-a73e .*a*u*e o/ 3010*a*0on. 0. e..en*0a3 0n o4de4 *o e.*a730.+ *+e
-+03d=. a-:no,3ed51en*.
G2H
A scrutin# of the records /ould sho/ that petitioners /ere &orn durin$ the "arria$e of their parents. The certificates of
live &irth /ould also identif# *anilo de 'esus as &ein$ their father.
There is perhaps no presu"ption of the la/ "ore fir"l# esta&lished and founded on sounder "oralit# and "ore
convincin$ reason than the presu"ption that children &orn in /edlock are le$iti"ate.
G4H
This presu"ption indeed
&eco"es-on-3u.0;e in the a&sence of proof that there is ph#sical i"possi&ilit# of access &et/een the spouses durin$ the first
,20 da#s of the 300 da#s /hich i""ediatel# precedes the &irth of the child due to BaC the ph#sical incapacit# of the hus&and to
have se5ual intercourse /ith his /ife7 B&C the fact that the hus&and and /ife are livin$ separatel# in such a /a# that se5ual
intercourse is not possi&le7 or BcC serious illness of the hus&and, /hich a&solutel# prevents se5ual intercourse.
G-H
Fuite
re"arka&l#, upon the e5piration of the periods set forth in Article ,20,
G,0H
and in proper cases Article ,2,,
G,,H
of the (a"il# Code
B/hich took effect on 03 Au$ust ,-44C, the action to i"pu$n the le$iti"ac# of a child /ould no lon$er &e le$all# feasi&le and the
status conferred &# the presu"ption &eco"es fi5ed and unassaila&le.
G,2H
Succinctl#, in an atte"pt to esta&lish their ille$iti"ate filiation to the late 'uan G. *i>on, petitioners, in effect, /ould
i"pu$n their le$iti"ate status as &ein$ children of *anilo de 'esus and Carolina Aves de 'esus. This step cannot &e aptl#
done &ecause the la/ itself esta&lishes the le$iti"ac# of children conceived or &orn durin$ the "arria$e of the parents. T+e
24e.u12*0on o/ 3e50*01a-6 /0<e. a -0;03 .*a*u. /o4 *+e -+03d 7o4n 0n ,ed3o-:, and on36 *+e /a*+e4,
G,3H
o4 0n e<-e2*0ona3
0n.*an-e. *+e 3a**e4=. +e04.,
G,9H
-an -on*e.* 0n an a224o240a*e a-*0on *+e 3e50*01a-6 o/ a -+03d 7o4n *o +0. ,0/e. T+u., 0* 0.
on36 ,+en *+e 3e50*01a-6 o/ a -+03d +a. 7een .u--e../u336 012u5ned *+a* *+e 2a*e4n0*6 o/ *+e +u.7and -an 7e 4e8e-*ed.
Respondents correctl# ar$ued that petitioners hardl# could find succor in "ivinagracia. 0n said case, the Supre"e Court
re"anded to the trial court for further proceedin$s the action for partition filed &# an ille$iti"ate child /ho had clai"ed to &e an
ackno/led$ed spurious child &# virtue of a private docu"ent, si$ned &# the ackno/led$in$ parent, evidencin$ such
reco$nition. 0t /as not a case of le$iti"ate children assertin$ to &e so"e&od# elseIs ille$iti"ate children. Petitioners totall#
i$nored the fact that it /as not for the", $iven the attendant circu"stances particularl#, to declare that the# could not have
&een the le$iti"ate children, clearl# opposed to the entries in their respective &irth certificates, of *anilo and Carolina de 'esus.
The rule that the /ritten ackno/led$"ent "ade &# the deceased 'uan G. *i>on esta&lishes petitionersI alle$ed
ille$iti"ate filiation to the decedent cannot &e validl# invoked to &e of an# relevance in this instance. This issue, i.e., /hether
petitioners are indeed the ackno/led$ed ille$iti"ate offsprin$s of the decedent, cannot &e aptl# ad1udicated /ithout an action
havin$ &een first &een instituted to i"pu$n their le$iti"ac# as &ein$ the children of *anilo A. de 'esus and Carolina Aves de
'esus &orn in la/ful /edlock. 'urisprudence is stron$l# settled that the para"ount declaration of le$iti"ac# &# la/ cannot &e
attacked collaterall#,
G,:H
one that can onl# &e repudiated or contested in a direct suit specificall# &rou$ht for that purpose.
G,@H
0ndeed, a child so &orn in such /edlock shall &e considered le$iti"ate althou$h the "other "a# have declared a$ainst its
le$iti"ac# or "a# have &een sentenced as havin$ &een an adulteress.
G,2H
CHEREFORE, the fore$oin$ dis8uisitions considered, the instant petition is *)N0)*. No costs.
SO ORERE.
HG.R. No. 1"&#9". June 15, 2'''I
TEOFISTA (A(IERA, petitioner, vs. PRESENTACION (. CATOTAL, respondent.
E C I S I O N
PANGANI(AN, J.!
A &irth certificate "a# &e ordered cancelled upon ade8uate proof that it is fictitious. Thus, void is a certificate /hich sho/s that
the "other /as alread# fift#-four #ears old at the ti"e of the child.s &irth and /hich /as si$ned neither &# the civil re$istrar nor
&# the supposed "other. Aecause her inheritance ri$hts are adversel# affected, the le$iti"ate child of such "other is a proper
part# in the proceedin$s for the cancellation of the said certificate.
S*a*e1en* o/ *+e Ca.e
Su&"itted for this CourtIs consideration is a Petition for Revie/ on Certiorari
G,H
under Rule 9: of the Rules of Court, seekin$
reversal of the +arch ,4, ,--- *ecision
G2H
of the Court of Appeals
G3H
BCAC in CA-GR CD No. :@03,. Affir"in$ the Re$ional Trial
Court of =anao del Norte in Special Proceedin$s No. 309@, the CA ruled as follo/s6
0N D0)? %)R)!(, the appealed decision is here&# A((0R+)*. Accordin$l#, the instant appeal is
*0S+0SS)* for lack of "erit. Costs a$ainst the defendant-appellant, T)!(0STA AAA0)RA, a.k.a. Teofista
Guinto.
G9H
The dispositive portion of the affir"ed RTC *ecision reads6
?%)R)(!R), in vie/ of the fore$oin$ findin$s and pronounce"ents of the Court, 1ud$"ent is here&#
rendered, to /itG6H
,C *eclarin$ the Certificate of Airth of respondent Teofista Guinto as null and void .a& initio.7
2C !rderin$ the respondent =ocal Civil Re$istrar of 0li$an to cancel fro" the re$istr# of live &irth of 0li$an
Cit# A0RT% C)RT0(0CAT) recorded as Re$istr# No. ,@03:7
(urnish copies of this decision to the =ocal Civil Re$istrar of 0li$an Cit#, the Cit# Prosecutor, counsel for
private respondent Att#. To"as Ca&ili and to counsel for petitioner.
S! !R*)R)*.
T+e Fa-*.
The undisputed facts are su""ari>ed &# the Court of Appeals in this /ise6
Presentacion A. Catotal Bhereafter referred to as PR)S)NTAC0!NC filed /ith the Re$ional Trial Court of
=anao del Norte, Aranch 00, 0li$an Cit#, a petition for the cancellation of the entr# of &irth of Teofista Aa&iera
Bherafter referred to as T)!(0STAC in the Civil Re$istr# of 0li$an Cit#. The case /as docketed as Special
Proceedin$s No. 309@.
(ro" the petition filed, PR)S)NTAC0!N asserted .that she is the onl# survivin$ child of the late spouses
)u$enio Aa&iera and %er"o$ena Cari<osa, /ho died on +a# 2@, ,--@ and 'ul# @, ,--0 respectivel#7 that
on Septe"&er 20, ,--@ a &a&# $irl /as delivered &# .hilot. in the house of spouses )u$enio and
%er"o$ena Aa&iera and /ithout the kno/led$e of said spouses, (lora Guinto, the "other of the child and
a house"aid of spouses )u$enio and %er"o$ena Aa&iera, caused the re$istrationMrecordin$ of the facts of
&irth of her child, &# si"ulatin$ that she /as the child of the spouses )u$enio, then @: #ears old and
%er"o$ena, then :9 #ears old, and "ade %er"o$ena Aa&iera appear as the "other &# for$in$ her
si$nature 5 5 57 that petitioner, then ,: #ears old, sa/ /ith her o/n e#es and personall# /itnessed (lora
Guinto $ive &irth to Teofista Guinto, in their house, assisted &# .hilot.7 that the &irth certificate 5 5 5 of
Teofista Guinto is void a& initio, as it /as totall# a si"ulated &irth, si$nature of infor"ant for$ed, and it
contained false entries, to /it6 aC The child is "ade to appear as the le$iti"ate child of the late spouses
)u$enio Aa&iera and %er"o$ena Cari<osa, /hen she is not7 &C The si$nature of %er"o$ena Cari<osa, the
"other, is falsifiedMfor$ed. She /as not the infor"ant7 cC The fa"il# na"e AAA0)RA is false and unla/ful
and her correct fa"il# na"e is GE0NT!, her "other &ein$ sin$le7 dC %er real "other /as (lora Guinto and
her status, an ille$iti"ate child7 The natural father, the carpenter, did not si$n it7 that the respondent
Teofista Aar&iera.s &irth certificate is void a& initio, and it is patentl# a si"ulation of &irth, since it is clinicall#
and "edicall# i"possi&le for the supposed parents to &ear a child in ,-:@ &ecause6 aC %er"o$ena
Cari<osa Aa&iera, /as alread# :9 #ears old7 &C %er"o$ena.s last child &irth /as in the #ear ,-9,, the #ear
petitioner /as &orn7 cC )u$enio /as alread# @: #ears old, that the void and si"ulated &irth certificate of
Teofista Guinto /ould affect the hereditar# ri$hts of petitioner /ho inherited the estate of cancelled and
declared void and theretofore she pra#s that after pu&lication, notice and hearin$, 1ud$"ent G&eH renderGedH
declarin$ 5 5 5 the certificate of &irth of respondent Teofista Guinto as declared void, invalid and ineffective
and orderin$ the respondent local civil re$istrar of 0li$an to cancel fro" the re$istr# of live &irth of 0li$an Cit#
A0RT% C)RT0(0CAT) recorded as Re$istr# No. ,@03:.
(indin$ the petition to &e sufficient in for" and su&stance, the trial court issued an order directin$ the
pu&lication of the petition and the date of hearin$ thereof .in a ne/spaper, the =ocal Civil Re$istrar of 0li$an
Cit#, the office of the Cit# Prosecutor of 0li$an Cit# and T)!(0STA.
T)!(0STA filed a "otion to dis"iss on the $rounds that .the petition states no cause of action, it &ein$ an
attack on the le$iti"ac# of the respondent as the child of the spouses )u$enio Aa&iera and %er"o$ena
Cari<osa Aa&iera7 that plaintiff has no le$al capacit# to file the instant petition pursuant to Article ,2, of the
(a"il# Code7 and finall# that the instant petition is &arred &# prescription in accordance /ith Article ,20 of
the (a"il# Code.. The trial court denied the "otion to dis"iss.
Su&se8uentl#, .Att#s. Padilla, Elindan$ and Padilla appeared and filed an ans/erMopposition in &ehalf of
private respondent Teofista Aa&iera, G/hoH /as later on su&stituted &# Att#. Ca&ili as counsel for private
respondent..
0n the ans/er filed, T)!(0STA averred .that she /as al/a#s kno/n as Teofista Aa&iera and not Teofista
Guinto7 that plaintiff is not the onl# survivin$ child of the late spouses )u$enio Aa&iera and %er"o$ena C.
Aa&iera, for the truth of the "atter Gis thatH plantiff Presentacion A. D. Catotal and GdefendantH Teofista
Aa&iera are sisters of the full-&lood. %er Certificate of Airth, si$ned &# her "other %er"o$ena Aa&iera, 5 5
5 Certificate of Aaptis", 5 5 5 Student.s Report Card 5 5 5 all incorporated in her ans/er, are elo8uent
testi"onies of her filiation. A# /a# of special and affir"ative defenses, defendantMrespondent contended
that the petition states no cause of action, it &ein$ an attack on the le$iti"ac# of the respondent as the
child of the spouses )u$enio Aa&iera and %er"o$ena Cari<o>a Aa&iera7 that plaintiff has no le$al capacit#
to file the instant petition pursuant to Article ,2, of the (a"il# Code7 and finall# that the instant petition is
&arred &# prescription in accordance /ith Article ,20 of the (a"il# Code.
G:H
Ru30n5 o/ *+e Cou4* o/ A22ea3.
The Court of Appeals held that the evidence adduced durin$ trial proved that petitioner /as not the &iolo$ical child of
%er"o$ena Aa&iera. 0t also ruled that no evidence /as presented to sho/ that %er"o$ena &eca"e pre$nant in ,-:-. 0t further
o&served that she /as alread# :9 #ears old at the ti"e, and that her last pre$nanc# had occurred /a# &ack in ,-9,. The CA
noted that the supposed &irth took place at ho"e, not/ithstandin$ the advanced a$e of %er"o$ena and its conco"itant
"edical co"plications. +oreover, petitioner.s Airth Certificate /as not si$ned &# the local civil re$istrar, and the si$nature
therein, /hich /as purported to &e that of %er"o$ena, /as different fro" her other si$natures.
The CA also dee"ed inapplica&le Articles ,20 and ,2, of the (a"il# Code, /hich stated that onl# the father could i"pu$n the
child.s le$iti"ac#, and that the sa"e /as not su&1ect to a collateral attack. 0t held that said provisions conte"plated a situation
/herein the hus&and or his heirs asserted that the child of the /ife /as not his. 0n this case, the action involved the cancellation
of the childIs Airth Certificate for &ein$ void ab initio on the $round that the child did not &elon$ to either the father or the
"other.
%ence, this appeal.
G@H
I..ue.
Petitioner presents the follo/in$ assi$n"ent of errors6
,C Respondent Bplaintiff in the lo/er court a 8uoC does not have the le$al capacit# to file the special
proceedin$ of appeal under CA GR No. CD-:@03, su&1ect "atter of this revie/ on certiorari7
2C The special proceedin$ on appeal under CA GR No. CD-:@03, is i"proper and is &arred &# GtheH statute
of li"itation BprescriptionC7 GandH
3C The %onora&le Court of Appeals, the fifteenth division utterl# failed to hold, that the ancient pu&lic record
of petitioner.s &irth is superior to the self-servin$ oral testi"on# of respondent.
G2H
T+e Cou4*=. Ru30n5
The Petition is not "eritorious.
F04.* I..ue! Subject of the Present Action
Petitioner contends that respondent has no standin$ to sue, &ecause Article ,2,
G4H
of the (a"il# Code states that the child.s
filiation can &e i"pu$ned onl# &# the father or, in special circu"stances, his heirs. She adds that the le$iti"ac# of a child is not
su&1ect to a collateral attack.
This ar$u"ent is incorrect. Respondent has the re8uisite standin$ to initiate the present action. Section 2, Rule 3 of the Rules
of Court, provides that a real part# in interest is one /ho stands to &e &enefited or in1ured &# the 1ud$"ent in the suit, or the
part# entitled to the avails of the suit.
G-H
The interest of respondent in the civil status of petitioner ste"s fro" an action for
partition /hich the latter filed a$ainst the for"er.
G,0H
The case concerned the properties inherited &# respondent fro" her
parents.
+oreover, Article ,2, of the (a"il# Code is not applica&le to the present case. A close readin$ of this provision sho/s that it
applies to instances in /hich the father i"pu$ns the le$iti"ac# of his /ifeIs child. The provision, ho/ever, presupposes that the
child /as the undisputed offsprin$ of the "other. The present case alle$es and sho/s that %er"o$ena did not $ive &irth to
petitioner. 0n other /ords, the pra#er herein is not to declare that petitioner is an ille$iti"ate child of %er"o$ena, &ut to esta&lish
that the for"er is not the latter.s child at all. Deril#, the present action does not i"pu$n petitionerIs filiation to Spouses )u$enio
and %er"o$ena Aa&iera, &ecause there is no &lood relation to i"pu$n in the first place.
0n Benitez7Badua v. Court of Appeals,
B88C
the Court ruled thus6
PetitionerIs insistence on the applica&ilit# of Articles ,@9, ,@@, ,20 and ,2, of the (a"il# Code to the case
at &ench cannot &e sustained. These articles provide6
5 5 5.....5 5 5.....5 5 5
A careful readin$ of the a&ove articles /ill sho/ that the# do not conte"plate a situation, like in the instant
case, /here a child is alle$ed not to &e the child of nature or &iolo$ical child of a certain couple. Rather,
these articles $overn a situation /here a hus&and Bor his heirsC denies as his o/n a child of his /ife. Thus,
under Article ,@@, it is the husband /ho can i"pu$n the le$iti"ac# of said child &# provin$6 B,C it /as
ph#sicall# i"possi&le for hi" to have se5ual intercourse, /ith his /ife /ithin the first ,20 da#s of the 300
da#s /hich i""ediatel# preceded the &irth of the child7 B2C that for &iolo$ical or other scientific reasons, the
child could not have &een his child7 B3C that in case of children conceived throu$h artificial inse"ination, the
/ritten authori>ation or ratification &# either parent /as o&tained throu$h "istake, fraud, violence,
inti"idation or undue influence. Articles ,20 and ,2, reinforce this readin$ as the# speak of the
prescriptive period /ithin /hich the husband or an of his heirs should file the action i"pu$nin$ the
le$iti"ac# of said child. *ou&tless then, the appellate court did not err /hen it refused to appl# these
articles to the case at &ench. 3or the case at bench is not one ,here the heirs of the late &icente are
contending that petitioner is not his child b .sabel. Rather, their clear submission is that petitioner ,as not
born to &icente and .sabel. !ur rulin$ in Ca&at&at-=i" vs. 0nter"ediate Appellate Court, ,@@ SCRA 9:,,
9:2 cited in the i"pu$ned decision is apropos, viz6
WPetitionersI recourse to Article 2@3 of the Ne/ Civil Code Gno/ Art. ,20 of the (a"il#
CodeH is not /ell-taken. This le$al provision refers to an action to i"pu$n le$iti"ac#. 0t
is inapplica&le to this case &ecause this is not an action to i"pu$n the le$iti"ac# of a
child, &ut an action of the private respondents to clai" their inheritance as le$al heirs
of their childless deceased aunt. The# do not clai" that petitioner Dioleta Ca&at&at =i"
is an ille$iti"ate child of the deceased, &ut that she is not the decedentIs child at all.
Aein$ neither GaH le$all# adopted child, nor an ackno/led$ed natural child, nor a child
&# le$al fiction of )speran>a Ca&at&at, Dioleta is not a le$al heir of the
deceased.I
G,2H
B)"phasis supplied.C
Se-ond I..ue! Prescription
Petitioner ne5t contends that the action to contest her status as a child of the late %er"o$ena Aa&iera has alread# prescri&ed.
She cites Article ,20 of the (a"il# Code /hich provides the prescriptive period for such action6
Art. ,20. The action to i"pu$n the le$iti"ac# of the child shall &e &rou$ht /ithin one #ear fro" the
kno/led$e of the &irth or its recordin$ in the civil re$ister, if the hus&and or, in a proper case, an# of his
heirs, should reside in the cit# or "unicipalit# /here the &irth took place or /as recorded.
0f the hus&and or, in his default, all of his heirs do not reside at the place of &irth as defined in the first
para$raph or /here it /as recorded, the period shall &e t/o #ears if the# should reside in the Philippines7
and three #ears if a&road. 0f the &irth of the child has &een concealed fro" or /as unkno/n to the hus&and
or his heirs, the period shall &e counted fro" the discover# or kno/led$e of the &irth of the child or of the
fact of re$istration of said &irth, /hichever is earlier.
This ar$u"ent is &ereft of "erit. The present action involves the cancellation of petitionerIs Airth Certificate7 it does not i"pu$n
her le$iti"ac#. Thus, the prescriptive period set forth in Article ,20 of the (a"il# Code does not appl#. Deril#, the action to nullif#
the Airth Certificate does not prescri&e, &ecause it /as alle$edl# void ab initio.
G,3H
T+04d I..ue! Presumption in Favor of the Birth Certificate
=astl#, petitioner ar$ues that the evidence presented, especiall# %er"o$enaIs testi"on# that petitioner /as not her real child,
cannot overco"e the presu"ption of re$ularit# in the issuance of the Airth Certificate.
?hile it is true that an official docu"ent such as petitionerIs Airth Certificate en1o#s the presu"ption of re$ularit#, the specific
facts attendant in the case at &ar, as /ell as the totalit# of the evidence presented durin$ trial, sufficientl# ne$ate such
presu"ption. 3irst, there /ere alread# irre$ularities re$ardin$ the Airth Certificate itself. 0t /as not si$ned &# the local civil
re$istrar.
G,9H
+ore i"portant, the Court of Appeals o&served that the "otherIs si$nature therein /as different fro" her si$natures
in other docu"ents presented durin$ the trial.
0econd, the circu"stances surroundin$ the &irth of petitioner sho/ that %er"o$ena is not the for"er.s real "other. (or one,
there is no evidence of %er"o$enaIs pre$nanc#, such as "edical records and doctorIs prescriptions, other than the Airth
Certificate itself. 0n fact, no /itness /as presented to attest to the pre$nanc# of %er"o$ena durin$ that ti"e. +oreover, at the
ti"e of her supposed &irth, %er"o$ena /as alread# :9 #ears old. )ven if it /ere possi&le for her to have $iven &irth at such a
late a$e, it /as hi$hl# suspicious that she did so in her o/n ho"e, /hen her advanced a$e necessitated proper "edical care
nor"all# availa&le onl# in a hospital.
The "ost si$nificant piece of evidence, ho/ever, is the deposition of %er"o$ena Aa&iera /hich states that she did not $ive
&irth to petitioner, and that the latter /as not hers nor her hus&and )u$enioIs. The deposition reads in part6
8.....?ho are #our childrenO
a.....Presentation and (lorentino Aa&iera.
8.....No/, this Teofista Aa&iera clai"s that she is #our le$iti"ate child /ith #our hus&and )u$enio Aa&iera,
/hat can #ou sa# a&out thatO
a.....She is not our child.
5 5 5.....5 5 5.....5 5 5
8.....*o #ou recall /here she /as &ornO
a.....0n our house &ecause her "other /as our house helper.
8.....Could #ou recall for ho/ lon$ if ever this Teofista Aa&iera lived /ith #ou in #our residenceO
a.....+a#&e in ,-24 &ut she G/ouldH al/a#s $o ouGtH fro" ti"e to ti"e.
8.....No/, durin$ this ti"e, do #ou recall if #ou ever assertGedH her as #our dau$hter /ith #our hus&andO
a.....No, sir.
G,:H
Rel#in$ "erel# on the assu"ption of validit# of the Airth Certificate, petitioner has presented no other evidence other than the
said docu"ent to sho/ that she is reall# %er"o$enaIs child. Neither has she provided an# reason /h# her supposed "other
/ould "ake a deposition statin$ that the for"er /as not the latter.s child at all.
All in all, /e find no reason to reverse or "odif# the factual findin$ of the trial and the appellate courts that petitioner /as not
the child of respondentIs parents.
CHEREFORE, the Petition is here&# "*#.*" and the assailed *ecision A33.R)*". Costs a$ainst petitioner.
SO ORERE.
HG.R. No. 1#12%". Ma6 1%, 2''5I
JOSE RIKERO, JESSIE RIKERO and AMALIA RIKERO, petitioners, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, MARY JANE Y CHIAO
V
>
E GUDMAN, and (ENITO Y CHIAO, JR., 4e24e.en*ed 76 +0. un-3e HENRY S. Y CHIAO, respondents.
E C I S I O N
CALLEJO, SR., J.!
This is a petition for revie/ on certiorari of the *ecision
G,H
of the Court of Appeals BCAC in CA-G.R. SP No. 992@, annullin$
the decision of the Re$ional Trial Court BRTCC of Na$a Cit#, Aranch ,-, in Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2.
T+e An*e-eden*.
!n Au$ust 22, ,--@, Aenedick Arevalo filed a Co"plaint
G2H
a$ainst +ar# 'ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an, Aenito *# Chiao, 'r.,
and Aenson *# Chiao, in the Re$ional Trial Court BRTCC of Na$a Cit#, for co"pulsor# reco$nition as the ille$iti"ate child of
their father, Aenito *# Chiao, Sr., and for the ad"inistration and partition of his estate as he had died intestate on 'ul# 22,
,--:. Since Aenedick /as a "inor, his natural "other and $uardian ad litem, Shirle# Arevalo, filed the co"plaint on his &ehalf.
Concepcion, Aenito Sr.Is /ife, /as not i"pleaded as she had died on 'ul# 2, ,--:. The case /as docketed as Civil Case No.
RTC Y-@-3@,2 and raffled to Aranch ,- of the court.
G3H
Aenedick, /hose counsel /as Att#. A"ador =. Si"ando, "ade the follo/in$ alle$ations in his co"plaint6
*urin$ his lifeti"e, Aenito *# Chiao, Sr. /as en$a$ed in &usiness, under the &usiness na"e Aenito Co""ercial in Na$a
Cit#. %e courted Shirle# Arevalo BAenedickIs "otherC in ,--,, assurin$ her of his sincere love, like/ise pro"isin$ that her
colle$e education /ould &e financed and that she /ould &e provided /ith a &etter life. Alinded &# his pro"ises and assurances
of his love for her, Shirle# a$reed to an a"orous relationship /ith Aenito, Sr. True to his /ord, Aenito, Sr. then provided her /ith
a residential house and lot located in Cana"an, Ca"arines Sur, /here the# coha&ited and resided7 he also financed her
colle$e education in "id/ifer#. !n !cto&er :, ,--:, JAenedick Arevalo *# Chiao, 'r.,L the plaintiff, /as &orn, the product of the
a"orous relationship, /ho" Aenito, Sr. ackno/led$ed as his son. %e also continued to $ive Shirle# and their son financial and
"oral support.
0t /as also alle$ed that the *# Chiao si&lin$s reco$ni>ed Aenedick as the ille$iti"ate son of their father. +oreover, /hen
he died intestate, Aenito, Sr. left &ehind residential lands and co""ercial &uildin$s /orthP,00,000,000.00, "ore or less7 as
such, there /as a need for the appoint"ent of an ad"inistrator of the estate to preserve his BAenedickIsC ri$hts over the sa"e
&efore its partition. 0t /as pra#ed that upon the filin$ of the co"plaint, AenedickIs "other &e appointed as his guardian ad
litem, that an ad"inistrator of the estate of the deceased &e appointed, and that after due proceedin$s, 1ud$"ent &e rendered
in favor of Aenedick, as follo/s6
a. declarin$ the Plaintiff as the ille$iti"ate son of the late Aenito *# Chiao.
&. orderin$ herein *efendants to reco$ni>e and ackno/led$e the Plaintiff as the ille$iti"ate son of the late Aenito *#
Chiao.
c. orderin$ the Partition of the )state of Aenito *# Chiao and distri&utin$ the sa"e in favor of the *efendants and herein
Plaintiff in a "anner provided for &# la/.
d. $rantin$ the Plaintiff such other reliefs as "a# &e 1ust and e8uita&le under the la/.
G9H
0n an ans/er to the co"plaint, +ar# 'ane, throu$h counsel, for herself, and purportedl# in &ehalf of her &rothers, denied
the alle$ations that Shirle# and her father had an a"orous relationship and that Aenedick /as the ille$iti"ate son of their father
for /ant of kno/led$e or infor"ation7 the alle$ation that the# had reco$ni>ed Aenedick as the ille$iti"ate son of their father
/as, like/ise, specificall# denied. (inall#, she alle$ed that the plaintiffIs action /as for a clai" a$ainst the estate of their father,
/hich should &e filed in an action for the settle"ent of the estate of their deceased parents.
G:H
!n !cto&er 24, ,--@, Aenedick filed a +otion,
G@H
pra#in$ that the court order a "ental e5a"ination of the *# Chiao
&rothers, /ho /ere patients at the *on Susano '. Rodri$ue> +ental %ospital, and for the appoint"ent of their sister as their
$uardian ad litem in the case. 0t /as, like/ise, pra#ed that the director of the hospital &e su""oned to appear &efore the court
to infor" it of the "ental condition of the *# Chiao &rothers.
!n *ece"&er @, ,--@, Aenedick filed a +otion
G2H
set for hearin$ on *ece"&er -, ,--@, reiteratin$ his plea for the
appoint"ent of +ar# 'ane as guardian ad litem of her &rothers. That sa"e da#, ho/ever, the plaintiff, throu$h counsel, filed a
JCo"pro"ise A$ree"entL dated Nove"&er 29, ,--@, /ith the follo/in$ si$natories to the a$ree"ent6 Shirle# Arevalo, for the
plaintiff and assisted &# counsel, Att#. A"ador =. Si"ando7 and +ar# 'ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an, assisted &# counsel, Att#.
Adan +arcelo A. Aotor, purportedl# for and in &ehalf of her &rothers.
Appended to the a$ree"ent /as a photocop# of a Special Po/er of Attorne# BSPAC
G4H
dated Septe"&er 20, ,--:,
notari>ed and certified &# Att#. )d"undo =. Si"ando, purportedl# si$ned &# the *# Chiao &rothers, /ho /ere then still confined
in the hospital. +ar# 'ane /as therein appointed to &e their attorne#-in-fact, /ith the follo/in$ po/ers6
,. To represent us in ne$otiations and &e our representative /ith po/er to si$n A$ree"ents or Contracts of =ease involvin$
propert# andMor assets &elon$in$ to the estate of our late father Aenito *# Chiao, Sr. /hile said estate is not #et settled
&et/een BsicC all heirs7 as /ell as to collect rentals and other "one# due to the estate &# reason of said a$ree"ents or
contracts7
2. To file or cause to &e filed the necessar# proceedin$s for the settle"ent of the estate of our late father, and to ask for letters
of ad"inistration in her favor as a ne5t of kin or as so"eone selected &# us, ne5t of kin, to &e the ad"inistrator.
!n *ece"&er ,3, ,--@, the trial court approved the a$ree"ent and rendered 1ud$"ent on the &asis thereof, 8uoted as
follo/s6
Aefore this Court is a C!+PR!+0S) AGR))+)NT entered into &# and &et/een the parties in this case /hich is herein &elo/
8uoted, thus6
JC!+PR!+0S) AGR))+)NT
Plaintiff and defendant +ar#1ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an dul# assisted &# their respective counsels here&# su&"it the follo/in$
Co"pro"ise A$ree"ent6
,. That the defendant +ar#1ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an here&# reco$ni>es the plaintiff as the ille$iti"ate son of her
deceased father Aenito *# Chiao, Sr.7
2. That in full satisfaction and settle"ent of plaintiffIs clai" fro" the estate of the late Aenito *# Chiao, Sr., defendant
+ar#1ane *# Chiao *e Gu>"an for herself and in &ehalf of her &rothers, /ho are like/ise defendants in this case, here&#
a$ree and &ind herself to pa# the plaintiff the a"ount of P@,000,000.00 /hich shall &e taken fro" the estate of the late Aenito
*# Chiao, Sr., /hich a"ount shall &e pa#a&le under the follo/in$ ter"s and conditions6
a. The a"ount of P,,:00,000.00 shall &e pa#a&le upon si$nin$ of this Co"pro"ise A$ree"ent7
&. The &alance of P9,:00,000.00 shall &e pa#a&le /ithin the period of one #ear fro" the date of si$nin$ of this
Co"pro"ise A$ree"ent and for /hich the defendant +ar#1ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an shall issue t/elve B,2C checks
correspondin$ to the said &alance in the a"ount of P32:,000.00 per check7
3. That the parties here&# /aive other clai"s and counterclai"s a$ainst each other7
9. That an# violation of this Co"pro"ise A$ree"ent shall render the sa"e to &e i""ediatel# e5ecutor#.
?%)R)(!R), it is respectfull# pra#ed of this %onora&le Court that the fore$oin$ Co"pro"ise A$ree"ent &e approved and a
decision &e rendered in accordance there/ith.
Na$a Cit#, Philippines, Nove"&er 29, ,--@.
BSG*.C
A)N)*0C; AR)DA=! +ARN'AN) *N C%0A!-*) GEU+AN
Plaintiff *efendant
represented &#6
BSG*.C
S%0R=)N AR)DA=!
Natural Guardian Z Guardian
Ad =ite"
Assisted &#6
BSG*.C BSG*.C
A+A*!R =. S0+AN*! A*AN +ARC)=! A!T!R
Counsel for the Plaintiff Counsel for the *efendantsL
?%)R)(!R), findin$ the fore$oin$ Co"pro"ise A$ree"ent to &e the la/ &et/een the parties, not &ein$ tainted /ith
infir"ities, irre$ularities, fraud and ille$alities, and the sa"e not &ein$ contrar# to la/, pu&lic order, pu&lic polic#, "orals and
$ood custo"s, 'E*G+)NT is here&# rendered APPR!D0NG the sa"e.
Parties are here&# en1oined to faithfull# a&ide &# the ter"s and conditions of the fore$oin$ Co"pro"ise A$ree"ent.
No pronounce"ent as to costs.
S! !R*)R)*.
G-H
0t appears that a cop# of the decision /as sent &# re$istered "ail to the *# Chiao &rothers to the JAenito Co""ercial
Auildin$, Na$a Cit#.L
!n *ece"&er ,2, ,--@, +ar# 'ane, throu$h Att#. Si"ando, Bthe counsel for Aenedick in Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2C,
filed a petition /ith the RTC for the settle"ent of the estate of her father and for her appoint"ent as ad"inistrator thereto. The
case /as docketed as Special Proceedin$s No. RTCY-@-@49 and raffled to Aranch 20 of the court7 it /as later transferred to
Aranch ,-.
!n April 3, ,--2, Aenedick filed a +otion for )5ecution,
G,0H
of the *ecision dated Nove"&er 29, ,--@, on the alle$ation
that the defendants had failed to co"pl# /ith their o&li$ations under the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent. The trial court $ranted the
"otion in an !rder
G,,H
dated April 2, ,--2. Confor"a&l#, it issued a ?rit of )5ecution
G,2H
for the enforce"ent of the said decision.
!n April ,4, ,--2, Aenedick ter"inated the services of Att#. Si"ando since he /as +ar# 'aneIs counsel in Special
Proceedin$s No. -@-@49.
!n April 24, ,--2, the sheriff issued a Notice of Sale on )5ecution of Real Propert#
G,3H
over five parcels of land titled
under Aenito *# Chiao, Sr., includin$ the i"prove"ents thereon.
The *# Chiao &rothers, represented &# their uncle, %enr# S. *# Chiao, then filed /ith the CA a Petition for Annul"ent of
'ud$"ent /ith Er$ent Pra#er for the 0ssuance of a Te"porar# Restrainin$ !rder dated +a# 22, ,--2, assailin$ the decision of
the RTC in Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2, as /ell as the /rit of e5ecution issued pursuant thereto. The petition alle$ed that the
*# Chiao &rothers had no le$al capacit# to &e sued &ecause the# /ere of unsound "ind, /hich i"pelled their uncle %enr# to
file a petition for $uardianship over their person and propert#, no/ pendin$ in the RTC of Na$a Cit#, Aranch @,, docketed as
Special Proceedin$s No. RTCI-2-@-:. The# did not authori>e their sister +ar# 'ane to e5ecute an# co"pro"ise a$ree"ent for
and in their &ehalf7 #et, in confa&ulation /ith AenedickIs counsel, she /as a&le to secure a 1ud$"ent &ased on a void
co"pro"ise a$ree"ent. 0t /as further alle$ed that the *# Chiao &rothers /ere una/are of the co"plaint a$ainst the" and that
the# did not en$a$e the services of the la/ fir" of Aotor, %idal$o Z (ernando Associates to represent the" as counsel in said
cases. As such, the said counsel had no authorit# to file the ans/er to the co"plaint for and in their &ehalf. 0t /as further
pointed out that less than a "onth &efore the said co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /as e5ecuted &# their sister, she filed purportedl# in
their &ehalf, on Nove"&er 22, ,--@, a petition for the settle"ent of the estate of their parents in the RTC of Na$a Cit#, /ith the
assistance of Att#. Si"ando BAenedickIs counselC, as /ell as for the issuance of letters of ad"inistration in her favor, docketed
as Special Proceedin$s No. RTCI-@-@49.
G,9H
There /as thus collusion &et/een +ar# 'ane and Att#. Si"ando.
The *# Chiao &rothers, like/ise, opposed the appoint"ent of their sister as the ad"inistrator of their parentsI estate.
G,:H
The verification and certification of non-foru" shoppin$ in the petition /as si$ned &# their uncle %enr# as their
representative.
!n +a# 2-, ,--2, the CA issued a status quo order. %o/ever, &efore the said order /as served on Aenedick, several
lots covered &# Transfer Certificate of Title BTCTC No. ,@-3, in the na"e of Aenito, Sr. had alread# &een sold at pu&lic auction6
=ot No. 3, to 'ose Rivero for P@,900,000.007 =ot No. 9 to 'essie Rivero for P2,@00,000.00 and =ot No. :, for P2,000,000.00, to
A"alia Rivero. Another propert# covered &# TCT No. :2-- had also &een sold to Consuelo *# for P3,0,000.00.
G,@H
The &u#ers
at pu&lic auction had alread# re"itted the a"ounts of P,:,3,-,3@9.00 and P,@2,43@.00 to the e5ecutin$ sheriffs,
G,2H
/ho later
re"itted P:,2,,,,@9.00 to Aenedick throu$h his "other, Shirle#, in satisfaction of the decision,
G,4H
and the re"ainder $iven to
the Clerk of Court of the RTC.
!n 'une 3, ,--2, Sheriffs Arthur S. Cledera and Arnel 'ose A. Ru&io e5ecuted a Provisional Certificate of Sale
G,-H
over the
propert# to the &u#ers at pu&lic auction.
The *# Chiao &rothers, throu$h their uncle %enr#, then filed a "otion for the issuance of a /rit of preli"inar# "andator#
in1unction /ith ur$ent pra#er for the issuance of a te"porar# restrainin$ order, infor"in$ the CA of the recent develop"ents in
the case &elo/. 0n a Resolution
G20H
dated 'ul# ,9, ,--2, the appellate court $ranted their plea for a /rit of preli"inar# in1unction
upon the filin$ of a P:00,000.00 &ond, directin$ as follo/s6
BaC the private respondents andMor the sheriffs of the respondent court to deposit &efore the Aranch Clerk of Court of the
Re$ional Trial Court, Aranch ,-, Na$a Cit#, the proceeds of the pu&lic auction sale held on 'une 3, ,--2 and to su&"it to this
Court /ithin five B:C da#s fro" notice, proof of co"pliance there/ith7
B&C Sheriffs Arnel 'ose Ru&io and Arthur Cledera, throu$h the respondent court, to refrain fro" issuin$ an# certificate of sale
over the properties sold at the pu&lic auction sale conducted on the afore"entioned date7
BcC the respondent court to issue a notice of lis pendens on all the properties affected &# GtheH pu&lic auction sale conducted
on 'une 3, ,--2 and cause its re$istration /ith the Re$ister of *eeds concerned /ithin five B:C da#s fro" notice.
The sheriff /as, like/ise, directed to refrain andMor cease and desist fro" issuin$Meffectin$ an# further certificate of sale
over the affected properties.
G2,H
!n Au$ust ,:, ,--2, the RTC issued an !rder
G22H
directin$ the Re$ister of *eeds of Na$a Cit# to
co"pl# /ith the CA resolution.
+eanti"e, Aenson died intestate on 'une 2:, ,--2.
G23H
%is &rother, Aenito, 'r. then filed a Notice of *eath and
Su&stitution, and thereafter, a +otion to Ad"it an A"ended Petition to drop Aenson as petitioner, and the inclusion of his sister
+ar# 'ane, as part# respondent, as /ell as those /ho participated in the pu&lic auction, na"el#, 'ose Rivero, 'essie Rivero,
A"alia Rivero and Consuelo *#. The CA $ranted the "otion in a Resolution
G29H
dated 'anuar# ,9, ,--4.
Thereafter, Att#. Aotor, +ar# 'aneIs ne/ counsel, filed an )ntr# of Appearance /ith +otion to *is"iss,
G2:H
alle$in$, inter
alia, that an e5tra1udicial settle"ent &et/een the heirs of the spouses *# Chiao had alread# &een e5ecuted. Aenito, 'r.,
represented &# his uncle %enr#, opposed the "otion,
G2@H
alle$in$ that a dis"issal $rounded on the e5tra1udicial settle"ent alone
/as i"proper, since /hat /as &ein$ assailed /as a decision of a court &ased on a co"pro"ise a$ree"ent involvin$ one /ho
is not a part# thereto, /ith third-part# &idders actin$ in &ad faith. 0n a Resolution
G22H
dated (e&ruar# 22, ,--4, the CA directed
+ar# 'ane to su&"it her repl# to the opposition to the "otion to dis"iss filed &# %enr# on &ehalf of Aenito, 'r.
0n her co"pliance and co""entM"anifestation,
G24H
+ar# 'ane declared that there appeared to &e a sound &asis for the
nullification of the assailed decision since the ille$iti"ate filiation of Aenedick could not &e the su&1ect of a co"pro"ise
a$ree"ent. She further alle$ed that the parties thereunder did not reco$ni>e the validit# of the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent, as in
fact she and the petitioners /ere e5plorin$ the possi&ilit# of "odif#in$ their e5tra1udicial settle"ent.
G2-H
Aenedick, represented &# his "other Shirle#, presented &efore the appellate court an SPA dated !cto&er 3,, ,--@
e5ecuted &# Aenito, 'r., prepared &# Att#. Si"ando, authori>in$ Att#. Aotor to enter into a co"pro"ise a$ree"ent in the RTC.
G30H
!n +arch 3,, ,---, the CA rendered 1ud$"ent in favor of Aenito, 'r., $rantin$ the petition and nullif#in$ the assailed
decision and /rit of e5ecution issued &# the RTC, includin$ the sale at pu&lic auction of the propert# of the deceased. The
appellate court ruled that the RTC had no 1urisdiction over AenedickIs action for reco$nition as the ille$iti"ate son of Aenito, Sr.
and for the partition of his estate. 0t further held that the filiation of a person could not &e the su&1ect of a co"pro"ise
a$ree"ent7 hence, the RTC acted /ithout 1urisdiction in renderin$ 1ud$"ent &ased thereon. 0t concluded that the said
co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /as procured throu$h e5trinsic fraud.
The CA ordered the Clerk of Court of the RTC of Na$a Cit# to deliver to the trial court /ithin ten da#s fro" finalit# of said
1ud$"ent, the a"ount of P,:,942,200.00, to$ether /ith all interests earned therefro", and to thereafter distri&ute the a$$re$ate
a"ount to the &u#ers of the said properties, in proportion to the a"ounts the# had paid. 0t also ordered Aenedick, throu$h his
"other Shirle#, to turn over to the trial court, /ithin ten da#s fro" finalit# of 1ud$"ent, the a"ount of P:,2,,,,@9.00 received
fro" Sheriffs Ru&io and Cledera, to$ether /ith all other a"ounts that she "i$ht have &een paid pursuant to the co"pro"ise
a$ree"ent. This /as, ho/ever, /ithout pre1udice to the &u#ersI ri$ht of recourse a$ainst +ar# 'ane, /ho /as declared
su&sidiaril# lia&le therefor. The RTC /as, like/ise, directed to return to the &u#ers the a$$re$ate a"ount in the sa"e
proportion as a&ove stated7 thereafter, the properties /ould &e delivered to the intestate estate of Aenito, Sr. for proper
disposition &# the intestate court.
G3,H
'ose Rivero, 'essie Rivero and A"alia Rivero filed a "otion for the reconsideration of the decision, on the follo/in$
$rounds6
0. T%) %!N!RAA=) C!ERT !( APP)A=S )RR)* 0N RE=0NG T%AT T%) C!+PR!+0S) AGR))+)NT 0S 0NDA=0* *E)
T! )[TR0NS0C (RAE*7
00. T%) %!N!RAA=) C!ERT !( APP)A=S )RR)* 0N RE=0NG T%AT T%) R)SP!N*)NT C!ERT ACT)* ?0T%!ET
'ER0S*0CT0!N 0N R)N*)R0NG T%) ASSA0=)* 'E*G+)NT 0N T%0S CAS)7
000. T%) %!N!RAA=) C!ERT !( APP)A=S )RR)* 0N RE=0NG T%AT T%) PEA=0C AECT0!N SA=) C!N*ECT)* !N
'EN) 2, ,--2 ?AS D!0*7 AN*
0D. T%) %!N!RAA=) C!ERT !( APP)A=S )RR)* 0N RE=0NG T%AT PR0DAT) R)SP!N*)NTS '!S), ')SS0) AN*
A+A=0A, A== SERNA+)* R0D)R! C!E=* N!T %AD) =)GA==N A)C!+) T%) !?N)RS !( T%) PR!P)RT0)S S!=*
AT T%) PEA=0C AECT0!N SA=).
G32H
Epon the denial of their "otion for reconsideration thereof, the# filed the present petition for revie/ on certiorari.
T+e P4e.en* Pe*0*0on
The petitioners raise the follo/in$ issues6 B,C /hether or not %enr# *# Chiao had the authorit# to file the a"ended
petition for Aenito *# Chiao, 'r.7 B2C /hether or not the RTC had 1urisdiction over the action of Aenedick Arevalo for reco$nition
as the ille$iti"ate son of the deceased Aenito *# Chiao, Sr., as /ell as the action for partition and distri&ution of the latterIs
estate7 and B3C /hether the decision of the RTC &ased on the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent is null and void for e5trinsic fraud and
lack of 1urisdiction.
G33H
!n the first issue, the petitioners aver that the verification and certification of non-foru" shoppin$ contained in the petition
/ith the CA /as e5ecuted &# %enr#7 hence, it /as he and not Aenson or Aenito, 'r. /ho filed the petition. +oreover, %enr# had
no proof of his authorit# to file the petition for and in &ehalf of the &rothers. The petitioners assert that there /as no need for
%enr# to file the petition /ith the CA, since the *# Chiao &rothers had the le$al capacit# to do so, as ad"itted &# their counsel,
and %enr# hi"self. +oreover, there /as no la/ "andatin$ %enr# to represent his nephe/s in all actions /hich "a# redound to
their &enefit.
The petitioners point out that althou$h %enr# sou$ht to re"ed# the situation &# filin$ an a"ended petition pra#in$ that he
&e appointed as guardian ad litem for the *# Chiao &rothers, the CA did not take co$ni>ance of the alle$ations in the petition.
The CA /as correct in so doin$, since the "atter of /hether one is inco"petent should &e threshed out in the $uardianship
proceedin$s, Special Proceedin$s No. RTCI-2-@-:, and not in the CA via a petition to annul the 1ud$"ent of the RTC, /here
Aenito, 'r. is also a part# respondent.
!n the other issues, the petitioners "aintain that the CA erred in annullin$ the decision of the RTC &ased on the
co"pro"ise a$ree"ent on the $round of e5trinsic fraud7 the alle$ed fraud /as co""itted &# +ar# 'ane as an incident to the
trial. ?hat the CA should have done /as to dis"iss the petition, /ithout pre1udice to the ri$hts of the *# Chiao &rothers to file
an action a$ainst their sister. The latter /as herself a part# to the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent and also a principal part# to the
case7 hence, /as &ound &# it. As a "atter of fact, the petitioners aver, +ar# 'ane /as appointed &# her &rothers as their
attorne#-in-fact to ne$otiate for and e5ecute the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent in their &ehalf.
The petitioners further assert that the RTC had 1urisdiction over the petition filed &# Aenedick in the RTC, and that the
latterIs recourse /as &ased on para$raph ,, Article ,22 of the (a"il# Code, althou$h his putative father, Aenito *# Chiao, Sr.,
/as alread# dead /hen the co"plaint /as filed.
The petitioners thus insist that the pu&lic auction sale conducted &# the sheriff on the su&1ect properties /as valid.
0n her co""ent on the petition, +ar# 'ane avers that the decision of the CA holdin$ that the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /as
vitiated &# e5trinsic fraud is correct. She clai"s that she /as "ade to si$n the a$ree"ent, &ut /as not infor"ed of its
intricacies. She insists that she does not have an# lia&ilit# to Aenedick in Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2, despite her &ein$ a
si$nator# to the said a$ree"ent.
(or his part, respondent Aenito, 'r., throu$h his uncle %enr#, avers that the latterIs authorit# to file the a"ended petition
&efore the CA in their &ehalf /as never 8uestioned &# the petitioners. %e asserts that the CA ad"itted the a"ended petition
containin$ the pra#er that his uncle %enr# &e appointed as his guardian ad litem. Aesides, the CA found that he and his
&rothers /ere not of sound and disposin$ "inds7 hence, the need for a guardian ad litem in the person of his uncle. %e further
alle$es that the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /as the product of connivance &et/een his sister and Aenedick, and their respective
counsels. %e further points out that Att#. Si"ando, AenedickIs counsel in the RTC, /as like/ise the counsel for +ar# 'ane
/hen she filed her petition for letters of ad"inistration in the RTC of Na$a Cit# on *ece"&er ,2, ,--@. %e further insists that
the rulin$ of the CA on the issues of e5trinsic fraud and lack of 1urisdiction of the RTC is in accord /ith la/, and that the decision
&ased on the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /as null and void for lack of 1urisdiction.
G39H
T+e Ru30n5 o/ *+e Cou4*
The petition is denied for lack of "erit.
!n the first issue, /e re1ect the petitionersI contention that %enr# /as the petitioner /ho filed the a"ended petition &efore
the CA. As $leaned fro" said petition, the petitioners /ere JAenito *# Chiao, 'r. and Aenson *# Chiao, represented &# their
uncle %enr# S. *# Chiao.L +oreover, %enr# had the authorit# to file the a"ended petition and si$n the re8uisite certification on
non-foru" shoppin$ /hen the CA ad"itted the a"ended petition and appointed hi" as guardian ad litem of his nephe/s. This
/as in the 'anuar# ,9, ,--4 Resolution of the CA, /here the follo/in$ findin$s /ere "ade6
5 5 5 ?e find the opposition to &e devoid of "erit, firstl# &ecause there is an o&vious necessit# to a"end the petition7 and
secondl#, &ecause the representation of an inco"petent need not &e &# a dul# appointed 1udicial $uardian. A guardian ad
litem "a# &e appointed &# the court. 0n the instant case, the "e"&ers of this Court /ho conducted the several hearin$s herein,
are convinced fro" an o&servation of the petitioners that the# are not of a sound or disposin$ "ind. 5 5 5
G3:H
0n resolvin$ /hether to appoint a guardian ad litem for the respondent, the appellate court needed onl# to deter"ine
/hether the individual for /ho" a $uardian /as proposed /as so incapa&le of handlin$ personal and financial affairs as to
/arrant the need for the appoint"ent of a te"porar# $uardian. 0t onl# needed to "ake a findin$ that, &ased on clear and
convincin$ evidence, the respondent is inco"petent and that it is "ore likel# than not that his /elfare re8uires the i""ediate
appoint"ent of a te"porar# $uardian.
G3@H
A findin$ that the person for /ho" a guardian ad litem is proposed is incapa&le of
"ana$in$ his o/n personal and financial affairs &# reason of his "ental illness is enou$h.
G32H
2uardians ad litem are considered officers of the court in a li"ited sense, and the office of such $uardian is to represent
the interest of the inco"petent or the "inor.
G34H
?hether or not to appoint a guardian ad litem for the petitioners is addressed to
the sound discretion of the court /here the petition /as filed, takin$ into account the &est interest of the inco"petent or the
"inor.
G3-H
The court has discretion in appointin$ a guardian ad litemthat /ill &est pro"ote the interest of 1ustice.
G90H
The
appoint"ent of a guardian ad litem is desi$ned to assist the court in its deter"ination of the inco"petentIs &est interest.
G9,H
The records /ill sho/ that no less than Aenedick Arevalo sou$ht the appoint"ent of +ar# 'ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an
as guardian ad litem for respondent Aenito *# Chiao, 'r. and his &rother, Aenson *# Chiao, &efore the RTC in Civil Case No.
RTCI-@-3@,2.
0t "ust &e stressed that the appellate court /as not proscri&ed fro" appointin$ %enr# as guardian ad litem for the
respondents, "erel# &ecause of the pendenc# of his petition for appoint"ent as $uardian over their person and propert# &efore
Aranch @, of the RTC. Ti"e /as of the essence7 the RTC had issued a /rit of e5ecution for the enforce"ent of its decision
&ased on the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent7 the plaintiff therein, Aenedick Arevalo, /as &ent on enforcin$ the sa"e, and had in fact
caused the sale of five parcels of land &elon$in$ to the estate of Aenito, Sr. /orth "illions of pesos. 0ndeed, the sheriff /as
a&le to sell at pu&lic auction pri"e real propert# of the estate of the deceased for P20,000,000.00 &efore the status quo order of
the CA reached hi".
0t $oes /ithout sa#in$ that the findin$ of the CA on the "ental capacit# of the respondents is /ithout pre1udice to the
outco"e of the petition in Special Proceedin$s No. RTCI-2-@-:.
The petitionersI clai"s that there /as no factual &asis for the appellate courtIs findin$ that the respondents /ere
inco"petent cannot prevail. 0t "ust &e stressed that the CA conducted a hearin$ &efore arrivin$ at the conclusion that
respondent Aenito, 'r. /as inco"petent. +ore i"portantl#, such clai" involves a factual issue /hich cannot &e raised &efore
this Court under Rule 9: of the Rules of Court.
!n the issue of 1urisdiction, case la/ has it that the 1urisdiction of the tri&unal over the nature and su&1ect "atter of an
action is to &e deter"ined &# the alle$ations of the co"plaint, the la/ in effect /hen the co"plaint /as filed and the character
of the relief pra#ed for &# the plaintiff. The caption of the co"plaint is not deter"inative of the nature of the action. .f a court is
authorized b statute to entertain %urisdiction in a particular case onl and underta!es to exercise %urisdiction in a particular
case to ,hich the statute has no application, the %udgment rendered is void. The lac! of statutor authorit to ma!e a particular
%udgment is a!in to lac! of sub%ect7matter %urisdiction.
G92H
The CA nullified the decision of the RTC on the $round, inter alia, that the filiation of Aenedick could not &e the su&1ect of
a co"pro"ise, and that +ar# 'ane had no authorit# to e5ecute the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent for and in &ehalf of her &rothers.
The petitioners, for their part, "aintain that +ar# 'aneIs reco$nition of Aenedick as the ille$iti"ate son of her father /as
not a co"pro"ise, &ut an affir"ation of the alle$ations in the co"plaint that the *# Chiao si&lin$s had, in effect, reco$ni>ed hi"
as the ille$iti"ate son of their deceased father. The petitioners posit that the ad"issions in the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent are
like/ise &indin$ on the *# Chiao si&lin$s.
The contention of the petitioners is &ereft of "erit. The Court finds and so holds that the decision of the RTC &ased on
the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent e5ecuted &# +ar# 'ane is null and void.
Article 203:B,C of the Ne/ Civil Code provides that no co"pro"ise upon the civil status of persons shall &e valid. As
such, paternit# and filiation, or the lack of the sa"e, is a relationship that "ust &e 1udiciall# esta&lished, and it is for the court to
deter"ine its e5istence or a&sence. 0t cannot &e left to the /ill or a$ree"ent of the parties.
G93H
A co"pro"ise is a contract /here&# parties, "akin$ reciprocal concerns, avoid liti$ation or put an end to one alread#
co""enced.
G99H
=ike an# other contract, it "ust co"pl# /ith the re8uisite provisions in Article ,3,4 of the Ne/ Civil Code, to /it6
BaC consent of the contractin$ parties7 B&C o&1ect certain /hich is the su&1ect "atter of the contract7 and BcC cause of the
o&li$ation /hich is esta&lished. =ike an# other contract, the ter"s and conditions of a co"pro"ise a$ree"ent "ust not &e
contrar# to la/, "orals, $ood custo"s, pu&lic polic# and pu&lic order.
G9:H
An# co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /hich is contrar# to la/ or
pu&lic polic# is null and void, and vests no ri$hts and holds no o&li$ation to an# part#. 0t produces no le$al effect at all.
G9@H
Considerin$ all these, there can &e no other conclusion than that the decision of the RTC on the &asis of a co"pro"ise
a$ree"ent /here Aenedick /as reco$ni>ed as the ille$iti"ate child of Aenito, Sr. is null and void.
Article ,424 of the Ne/ Civil Code provides that an SPA is re8uired for a co"pro"ise. (urther"ore, the po/er of
attorne# should e5pressl# "ention the action for /hich it is dra/n7 as such, a co"pro"ise a$ree"ent e5ecuted &# one in
&ehalf of another, /ho is not dul# authori>ed to do so &# the principal, is void and has no le$al effect, and the 1ud$"ent &ased
on such co"pro"ise a$ree"ent is null and void.
G92H
The 1ud$"ent "a# thus &e i"pu$ned and its e5ecution "a# &e en1oined in
an# proceedin$ &# the part# a$ainst /ho" it is sou$ht to &e enforced.
G94H
A co"pro"ise "ust &e strictl# construed and can
include onl# those e5pressl# or i"pliedl# included therein.
G9-H
As previousl# stated, the Court is convinced that the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent si$ned &# +ar# 'ane and Aenedick /as a
co"pro"ise relatin$ to the latterIs filiation. +ar# 'ane reco$ni>ed Aenedick as the ille$iti"ate son of her deceased father, the
consideration for /hich /as the a"ount of P@,000,000.00 to &e taken fro" the estate, the /aiver of other clai"s fro" the
estate of the deceased, and the /aiver &# the *# Chiao si&lin$s of their counterclai"s a$ainst Aenedick. This is readil#
apparent, considerin$ that the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /as e5ecuted despite the si&lin$sI une8uivocal alle$ations in their
ans/er to the co"plaint filed onl# t/o "onths earlier, that Aenedick /as "erel# an i"postor6
,,. That para$raph ,, is *)N0)* for the truth of the "atter is that the# have not reco$ni>ed an# person or i"postor /ho
pretends havin$ a filial relation /ith their deceased father &# reason of herein *efendantIs fatherIs incapacit# to &ear children or
to en$a$e in an# carnal act considerin$ the a$e and ph#sical state of their father at that ti"e alluded to &# the Plaintiff K .
G:0H
To stress, the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent e5ecuted &# Aenedick and +ar# 'ane is null and void7 as such, the decision of the
RTC &ased thereon is also /ithout force and effect.
0t is, like/ise, plain as da# that onl# +ar# 'ane reco$ni>ed Aenedick as the ille$iti"ate son of her deceased father T
,. That the defendant +ar#1ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an here&# reco$ni>es the plaintiff as the ille$iti"ate son of her
deceased father Aenito *# Chiao, Sr.
G:,H
Such reco$nition, ho/ever, is ineffectual, &ecause under the la/, the reco$nition "ust &e "ade personall# &# the
putative parent and not &# an# &rother, sister or relative.
G:2H
0t is conceded that +ar# 'ane, in her &ehalf, and purportedl# in &ehalf of her &rothers, a$reed and &ound herself to pa#
Aenedick the a"ount of P@,000,000.00 to &e taken fro" the estate of their deceased father. %o/ever, a cursor# readin$ of the
SPA on record /ill sho/ that the *# Chiao &rothers did not authori>e their sister to reco$ni>e Aenedick as the ille$iti"ate son of
their father. The# could not have a$reed to pa#P@,000,000.00 to &e taken fro" the estate, &ecause the# had denied that
Aenedick /as the ille$iti"ate son of their father in their ans/er to the co"plaint.
!n the assu"ption that the *# Chiao &rothers had si$ned the SPA on Septe"&er 20, ,--:, a cursor# readin$ of the
co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /ill sho/ that the# did not specificall# e"po/er their sister to enter into a co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /ith
Aenedick in Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2. 0t &ears stressin$ that the SPA /as e5ecuted as earl# as Septe"&er 20, ,--:, /hile
the co"plaint /as filed /ith the RTC al"ost a #ear thereafter, or on Au$ust 22, ,--@.
The trial court acted /ith precipitate and inordinate speed in approvin$ the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent. The records sho/
that at a&out the ti"e /hen it /as e5ecuted &# +ar# 'ane, her &rothers /ere patients at the *on Susano '. Rodri$ue> +ental
%ospital, and Aenedick had accused her of &ein$ a spendthrift &# reason of her alle$ed addiction to dru$s.
G:3H
!n his &elief that the *# Chiao &rothers /ere inco"petent, Aenedick even filed a "otion for the appoint"ent of
a guardian ad litem for the", and for the e5a"ination of +ar# 'ane for dru$ addiction, as follo/s6
?%)R)(!R), it is "ost respectfull# pra#ed of this %onora&le Court that after hearin$, an order &e issued, as follo/s6
,. Appointin$ a Special Ad"inistrator andMor Receiver over the )state of Aenito *# Chiao GSr.H7
2. Appointin$ 2uardian Ad $item over the person of *efendants Aenito, 'r. and Aenson *#-Chiao7
3. !rderin$ defendant +ar#1ane *# Chiao to su&"it a "edical e5a"ination &# a "edical e5pert on dru$s to &e
co""issioned &# the %onora&le Court to deter"ine /hether or not said defendant is a dru$ dependent.
G:9H
0ndeed, Aenedick filed a +otion on Nove"&er ,9, ,--@, for the *# Chiao si&lin$s to appear &efore the RTC at 4630 a.".
of Nove"&er ,4, ,--@. %e, like/ise, pra#ed that the *irector of the *on Susano '. Rodri$ue> +ental %ospital &e directed to
&rin$ the clinical records of the &rothers, /hich the trial court $ranted per its !rder dated Nove"&er ,2, ,--@.
G::H
Epon +ar# 'aneIs failure to appear for the hearin$, Aenedick even sou$ht to have her cited in conte"pt of court. *espite
his char$e that +ar# 'ane /as a dru$ addict and a spendthrift, he, nevertheless, pra#ed in his +otion dated *ece"&er :, ,--@,
that she &e appointed the special ad"inistratri5 of the estate of Aenito, Sr. and the guardian ad litem of her &rothers, thus6
?%)R)(!R), in li$ht of all the fore$oin$ considerations, it is "ost respectfull# pra#ed of this %onora&le Court that +ar#1ane
*# Chiao- *e Gu>"an &e appointed as Special Ad"inistrator over the )state of the late Aenito *# Chiao, Sr., and as 2uardian
Ad $item of defendants Aenito, 'r., and Aenson *# Chiao.
G:@H
Aarel# t/o /eeks earlier, or on Nove"&er 29, ,--@, +ar# 'ane *# Chiao-*e Gu>"an B/ho" Aenedick &randed as a
spendthrift and a dru$ addictC, e5ecuted the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent, not onl# in her &ehalf, &ut also in &ehalf of her &rothers,
/ho /ere confined in the hospital and /ho" Aenedick considered as "entall# inco"petent, and needed a guardian ad litem.
The trial court i$nored all the fore$oin$ proceedin$s and approved the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /ithout &otherin$ to resolve the
issue of /hether the *# Chiao &rothers /ere indeed inco"petent, and /hether there /as a need to appoint a guardian ad
litem for the".
?hat is so /orriso"e is that the counsel of the *# Chiao si&lin$s, Att#. Aotor, did not even &other to file an# pleadin$ in
his clientsI &ehalf, relative to the "otions filed &# Aenedick. *espite the alle$ations that the *# Chiao &rothers /ere in the
"ental hospital and needed a guardian ad litem, and that +ar# 'ane /as a spendthrift and a dru$ addict, Att#. Aotor still
proceeded to si$n the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent as their counsel. +ore o"inousl#, the said counsel kne/ that it /as he /ho had
&een e"po/ered &# the *# Chiao &rothers to co"pro"ise Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2 B&ased on the SPA dated !cto&er 3,,
,--@C7 #et, he still allo/ed +ar# 'ane to e5ecute the sa"e &ased on an SPA dated Septe"&er 20, ,--: notarized b no less
than Benedic!5s counsel, Att. Amador 0imando.
The Court is convinced that the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent /as the handi/ork of Att#. Si"ando, &ecause it /as he /ho
notari>ed the SPA dated Septe"&er 20, ,--: purportedl# e5ecuted &# the *# Chiao &rothers. %e later &eca"e the counsel of
Aenedick a$ainst the *# Chiao si&lin$s in Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2. %e si$ned the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent as AenedickIs
counsel, despite his incessant clai" that the &rothers /ere inco"petent and needed a guardian ad litem. Aarel# ,, da#s after
the e5ecution of the co"pro"ise a$ree"ent, Att#. Si"ando filed a Petition for the Settle"ent of the )state of Aenito *# Chiao,
Sr., this ti"e as counsel of +ar# 'ane. 0t &ears stressin$ that +ar# 'ane /as the defendant in Civil Case No. RTCI-@-3@,2, and
that as counsel of Aenedick, the plaintiff in the said civil case, Att#. Si"ando had accused her of &ein$ a dru$ addict and a
spendthrift. A# then of course, his client BAenedickC had alread# received P@,000,000.00 fro" the estate of his alle$ed putative
father.
Since the decision of the RTC is null and void, the /rit of e5ecution issued pursuant thereto and the su&se8uent sale at
pu&lic auction of the properties &elon$in$ to the estate of Aenito *# Chiao, Sr. are null and void.
Considerin$ our fore$oin$ dis8uisitions, the Court no lon$er finds the need to still resolve the other issues that /ere
raised.
IN LIGHT OF ALL THE FOREGOING, the petition is *)N0)* for lack of "erit. Costs a$ainst the petitioners.
SO ORERE.