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Under the Regalian doctrine which is embodied in Section 2, Article XII of the 1987

Constitution, all lands of the public domain belong to the State, which is the source of any
asserted right to ownership of land. All lands not appearing to be clearly within private
ownership are presumed to belong to the State. Unless public land is shown to have been
reclassified or alienated to a private person by the State, it remains part of the inalienable
public domain. To overcome this presumption, incontrovertible evidence must be established
that the land subject of the application is alienable or disposable.[15]
To prove that the land subject of an application for registration is alienable, an applicant
must establish the existence of a positive act of the government such as a presidential
proclamation or an executive order; an administrative action; investigation reports of Bureau
of Lands investigators; and a legislative act or a statute.[16] The applicant may also secure
a certification from the Government that the lands applied for are alienable and disposable.
[17]

WHAT IS THE CONCEPT OF JURE REGALIA?


(REGALIAN DOCTRINE)
> Generally, under this concept, private title to land must be traced to some grant, express
or implied, from the Spanish Crown or its successors, the American Colonial Government,
and
thereafter,
the
Philippine
Republic
> In a broad sense, the term refers to royal rights, or those rights to which the King has by
virtue
of
his
prerogatives
> The theory of jure regalia was therefore nothing more than a natural fruit of conquest

CONNECTED TO THIS IS THE STATES POWER OF DOMINUUM


> Capacity of the state to own or acquire propertyfoundation for the early Spanish decree
embracing
the
feudal
theory
of
jura
regalia
> This concept was first introduced through the Laws of the Indies and the Royal Cedulas
> The Philippines passed to Spain by virtue of discovery and conquest. Consequently, all
lands became the exclusive patrimony and dominion of the Spanish Crown.
> The Law of the Indies was followed by the Ley Hipotecaria or the Mortgage Law of 1893.
This law provided for the systematic registration of titles and deeds as well as possessory
claims
> The Maura Law: was partly an amendment and was the last Spanish land law promulgated
in the Philippines, which required the adjustment or registration of all agricultural lands,
otherwise the lands shall revert to the State

TAKE NOTE THAT THE REGALIAN DOCTRINE IS ENSHRINED IN


OUR PRESENT AND PAST CONSTITUTIONS THE 1987
CONSTITUTION PROVIDES UNDER NATIONAL ECONOMY AND
PATRIMONY THE FOLLOWING

> Section 2. All lands of the public domain, waters, minerals, coal, petroleum, and other
mineral oils, all forces of potential energy, fisheries, forests or timber, wildlife, flora and
fauna, and other natural resources are owned by the State. With the exception of
agricultural lands, all other natural resources shall not be alienated. The exploration,
development, and utilization of natural resources shall be under the full control and
supervision of the State. The State may directly undertake such activities, or it may enter
into co-production, joint venture, or production-sharing agreements with Filipino citizens, or
corporations or associations at least sixty per centum of whose capital is owned by such
citizens.
Such
agreements
may
be
for
a
period
not
exceeding
twenty-five years, renewable for not more than twenty-five years, and under such terms and
conditions as may be provided by law. In cases of water rights for irrigation, water supply
fisheries, or industrial uses other than the development of water power, beneficial use may
be
the
measure
and
limit
of
the
grant.
> The abovementioned provision provides that except for agricultural lands for public
domain which alone may be alienated, forest or timber, and mineral lands, as well as all
other natural resources must remain with the State, the exploration, development and
utilization
of
which
shall
be
subject
to
its
full
control and supervision albeit allowing it to enter into coproduction, joint venture or
production-sharing agreements, or into agreements with foreign-owned corporations
involving technical or financial assistance for large-scale exploration, development, and
utilization

THE 1987 PROVISION


CONSTITUTION

HAD

ITS

ROOTS

IN

THE

1935

WHICH PROVIDES
> Section 1. All agricultural timber, and mineral lands of the public domain, waters,
minerals, coal, petroleum, and other mineral oils, all forces of potential energy and other
natural resources of the Philippines belong to the State, and their disposition, exploitation,
development, or utilization shall be limited to citizens of the Philippines or to corporations or
associations at least sixty per centum of the capital of which is owned by such citizens,
subject to any existing right, grant, lease, or concession at the time of the inauguration of
the Government established under this Constitution. Natural resources, with the exception of
public agricultural land, shall not be alienated, and no license, concession, or lease for the
exploitation, development, or utilization of any of the natural resources shall be granted for
a period exceeding twenty-five years, renewable for another twenty-five years, except as to
water
rights
for
irrigation,
water
supply, fisheries, or industrial uses other than the development of water power, in which
cases beneficial use may be the measure and limit of the grant.

THE 1973
DOCTRINE

CONSTITUTION

REITERATED

THE

REGALIAN

AS
FOLLOWS
> Section 8. All lands of public domain, waters, minerals, coal, petroleum and other mineral
oils, all forces of potential energy, fisheries, wildlife, and other natural resources of the
Philippines belong to the State. With the exception of agricultural, industrial or commercial,
residential, or resettlement lands of the public domain, natural resources shall not be

alienated, and no license, concession, or lease for the exploration, or utilization of any of the
natural resources shall be granted for a period exceeding twentyfive years, except as to
water rights for irrigation, water supply, fisheries, or industrial uses other than development
of water power, in which cases, beneficial use may by the measure and the limit of the
grant.

THE REGALIAN DOCTRINE DOESN'T NEGATE NATIVE TITLE.


THIS IS IN PURSUANCE TO WHAT HAS BEEN HELD IN CRUZ V.
SECRETARY OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES
> Petitioners challenged the constitutionality of Indigenous Peoples Rights Act on the ground
that it amounts to an unlawful deprivation of the States ownership over lands of the public
domain and all other natural resources therein, by recognizing the right of ownership of ICC
or IPs to their ancestral domains and ancestral lands on the basis of native title.
> As the votes were equally divided, the necessary majority wasnt obtained and petition
was
dismissed
and
the
laws
validity
was
upheld
> Justice Kapunan: Regalian theory doesnt negate the native title to lands held in private
ownership since time immemorial, adverting to the landmark case of CARINO V. LOCAL
GOVERNMENT, where the US SC through Holmes held: xxx the land has been held by
individuals under a claim of private ownership, it will be presumed to have been held in the
same way from before the Spanish conquest, and never to have been public land.
> Existence of native titie to land, or ownership of land by Filipinos by virtue of possession
under a claim of ownership since time immemorial and independent of any grant from the
Spanish
crown
as
an
exception
to
the
theory
of
jure
regalia
> Justice Puno: Carino case firmly established a concept of private land title that existed
irrespective of any royal grant from the State and was based on the strong mandate
extended to the Islands via the Philippine Bill of 1902. The IPRA recognizes the existence of
ICCs/IPs as a distinct sector in the society. It grants this people the ownership and possession
of their ancestral domains and ancestral lands and defines the extent of these lands and
domains
> Justice Vitug: Carino cannot override the collective will of the people expressed in the
Constitution.
> Justice Panganiban: all Filipinos, whether indigenous or not, are subject to the
Constitution, and that no one is exempt from its allencompassing provisions.