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UST Law Review

,
Vol.
LVII No. 1, November 2012
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, represented by THE NATIONAL IRRIGATION
ADMINISTRATION (NIA) v. RURAL BANK OF KABACAN, INC., et al.
G.R. No. 185124, 15 January 2012, SECOND DIVISION (Sereno, J.)
In the context of expropriation proceedings, the soil has no
value separate from that of the expropriated land
because real properties are characteristically indivisible; hence, the ownership of the land extends to the
surface as well a
s
to the subsoil under it.
The National Irrigation Administration (NIA)
filed with the Regional Trial Court of Kabacan
(RTC) a complaint for expropriation of a portion of three parcels of land covering a total of 14,497.91
square meters for its Malitubog
Marigadao irrigation project. The committee formed by the RTC
pegged the
fair market value of the land at Php 65.00 per square meter. It also added to its computation
the value of soil excavated from portions of two lots. RTC adopted the findings of the committee
despite the objections of NIA to the inclusion of the value of th
e excavated soil in the computation
of the value of the land.
NIA, through the Office of the Solicitor General, appealed to the Court of Appeals (CA)
which affirmed with modification the RTC’s decision. CA deleted the value of the soil in determination
of
compensation but affirmed RTC’s valuation of the improvements made on the properties.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the value of the excavated soil should be included in the computation of just
compensation
HELD:
Petition DENIED.
There is no legal basis to s
eparate the value of the excavated soil from that of the expropriated
properties, contrary to what the trial court did. In the context of expropriation proceedings, the soil
has no value separate from that of the expropriated land. Just compensation ordina
rily refers to the
value of the land to compensate for what the owner actually loses. Such value could only be that which
prevailed at the time of the taking.
I
n National Power Corporation v. Ibrahim, et al. The SC held that rights over lands are
indivisi
ble. This conclusion is drawn from Article 437 of the Civil Code which provides: “The owner
of a parcel of land is the owner of its surface and of everything under it, and he can construct thereon
any works or make any plantations and excavations which he
may deem proper, without detriment to
servitudes and subject to special laws and ordinances. He cannot complain of the reasonable
requirements of aerial navigation.” Thus, the ownership of land extends to the surface as well as to
the subsoil under it.
Hence, the CA correctly modified the trial court’s Decision when it ruled it is preposterous
that NIA will be made to pay not only for the value of the land but also for the soil excavated from
UST Law Review,
Vol.
LVII No. 1, November 2012
such land when such excavation is a necessary phase in the bui

the children of Tarciano and Rosario filed a case to annul the sale and reconvey the property on the ground that the sale was void since the consent of Rosario was not attained and that Rosarios’ signature was a mere forgery. that the testimony of Atty.lding of irrigation projects. and would discourage the construction of important public improvements. would be attained. That NIA will make use of the excavated soil is of no moment and is of no concern to the landowner who has been paid the fair market value of his land. On the other hand. Plagata thus went about to complete such tasks and claimed that he went to Manila to get the signature of Rosario but notarized the document at Zamboanga . ISSUES: 1. The RTC ruled in favor of the Fuentes spouses ruling that there was no forgery. Six years later in 1988. Atty. Whether or not Rosario’s signature on the document of consent to her husband Tarciano’s sale of their conjugal land to the Fuentes spouses was forged.000 will be paid upon the removal of Tarciano of certain structures on the land and after the consent of the estranged wife of Tarciano. which is the true measure of the damages. Tarciano and Rosario died while the Fuentes spouses and possession and control over the lot. Rosario. 1989. and that the action has already prescribed. Plagata who witnessed the signing of Rosario must be given weight. Oct 11. 1982. As pointed out by the OSG. Tarciano Roca bought a 358-square meter lot in Zambales from his mother. Whether or not the Rocas’ action for the declaration of nullity of that sale to the spouses already prescribed. The Fuentes spouses claim that the action has prescribed since an action to annul a sale on the ground of fraud is 4 years from discovery. Fuentes Vs Roca FACTS: On. Given that the transaction was in 1989 and the action was brought in 1997 hence it was well within the prescriptive period. As time passed. To sanction the payment of the excavated soil is to allow the landowners to recover more than the value of the land at the time when it was taken.000 down payment and Php 140. Tarciano offered to sell the lot to the petitioners Fuentes spouses through the help of Atty. and . Plagata who would prepare the documents and requirements to complete the sale. 2. In the agreement between Tarciano and Fuentes spouses there will be a Php 60. or just compensation. the law does not limit the use of the expropria ted land to the surface area only. The deed of sale was executed January 11. Eight years later in 1997. the CA reversed the ruling of the CA stating that the action has not prescribed since the applicable law is the 1950 Civil Code which provided that the sale of Conjugal Property without the consent of the other spouse is voidable and the action must be brought within 10 years.

they passed on the ownership of the property to their heirs. after the effectivity of the Family Code. The SC ruled that such position is wrong since as stated above. it is a given fact that assailing a void contract never prescribes. Whether or not only Rosario. 2. the sale was done in 1989. to exclude any person from its enjoyment and disposal. The SC noted that the CA was correct in ruling that the heavy handwriting in the document which stated consent was completely different from the sample signature. the Rocas. the action to assail a sale based on no consent given by the other spouse does not prescribe since it is a void contract. 3. under Article 429 of the Civil Code. could bring the action to annul that sale. It is argued by the Spouses Fuentes that it is only the spouse. On the other hand. the Rocas had the right. As lawful owners. namely. the wife whose consent was not had. the land remained the property of Tarciano and Rosario despite that sale. The Family Code applies to Conjugal Partnerships already established at the enactment of the Family Code. Rosario. With that. The sale of conjugal property done by Tarciano without the consent of Rosario is completely void under Art 124 of the family code. Although Tarciano and Rosario was married during the 1950 civil code. that prescriptive period applied to the Fuentes spouses since it was them who should have assailed such contract due to the fraud but they failed to do so. When the two died.3. . Consequently. that sale was void from the beginning. On the argument that the action has already prescribed based on the discovery of the fraud. RULING: 1. There was no evidence provided to explain why there was such difference in the handwriting. who can file such a case to assail the validity of the sale but given that Rosario was already dead no one could bring the action anymore. The SC ruled that there was forgery due to the difference in the signatures of Rosario in the document giving consent and another document executed at the same time period.

In her Answer. To facilitate the loan. to pay for the monthly amortizations.00 (P368T).000. a simulated sale over the property was executed by petitioner in favor of respondent-spouses. SPOUSES ARSENIO (Deceased) and ANGELES NANOL AND ANYBODY CLAIMING RIGHTS UNDER THEM Facts: Sometime in 1994.5 million. (Respondent Arsenio died. and . INC. Accordingly. for the price of P368. Inc. respondent-spouses entered into another Contract to Sell with petitioner over the same property for the same price. The bank collapsed and closed before it could release the loan. 105202 and 105203) were transferred in the names of respondentspouses and submitted to CDB for loan processing. undertaking to pay the loan over four years. Camella Homes Subdivision.. Respondent Arsenio demolished the original house and constructed a three-story house allegedly valued at P3. more or less. an action for unlawful detainer against respondent-spouses. respondent-spouses Arsenio and Angeles Nanol entered into a Contract to Sell with petitioner Communities Cagayan. Petitioner filed before the Municipal Trial Court in Cities. from 1997 to 2001. using the property as collateral. Cagayan de Oro City. On November 30. This time. leaving his wife. vs.. 1997. titles (TCT Nos. they availed of petitioner’s inhouse financing thus.) On September 10. (CCI) whereby the latter agreed to sell to respondent-spouses a house and Lots 17 and 19 located at Block 16. 2003. They obtained a loan from Capitol Development Bank (CDB). Issues 1) Whether petitioner is obliged to refund to respondent-spouses all the monthly installments paid. petitioner sent respondent-spouses a notarized Notice of Delinquency and Cancellation of Contract to Sell due to the latter’s failure to pay the monthly amortizations.COMMUNITIES CAGAYAN. respondent Angeles averred that the Deed of Absolute Sale is valid. herein respondent Angeles.

the builder or planter cannot be obliged to buy the land if its value is considerably more than that of the building or trees. Respondent-spouses are entitled to reimbursement of the improvements made on the property. which provides viz: ART. he shall pay reasonable rent. after payment of the indemnity provided for in Articles 546 and 548. nevertheless. the proper rent. However. We went over the records of this case and we note that the parties failed to attach a copy of the Contract to Sell. the grant to him. we now rule on the applicability of Article 448 of the Civil Code. if the owner of the land does not choose to appropriate the building or trees after proper indemnity. and the one who sowed.e. or to oblige the one who built or planted to pay the price of the land. Ruling The petition is partly meritorious. a conflict of rights arises between the owners. The rule that the choice under Article 448 of the Civil Code belongs to the owner of the land is in accord with the principle of accession. planter or sower has acted in good faith. the court shall fix the terms thereof. respondent-spouses being presumed builders in good faith. As such. The landowner cannot refuse to exercise either option and compel instead the owner of the building to remove it from the land. In view of the impracticability of creating a state of forced co-ownership. He cannot . Thus. that the accessory follows the principal and not the other way around. The parties shall agree upon the terms of the lease and in case of disagreement. The raison d’etre for this provision has been enunciated thus: Where the builder. and it becomes necessary to protect the owner of the improvements without causing injustice to the owner of the land. In such case. or to oblige the builder or planter to pay for the land and the sower the proper rent. In view of the special circumstances obtaining in this case. Respondent-spouses are entitled to the cash surrender value of the payments on the property equivalent to 50% of the total payments made under the Maceda Law. The owner of the land on which anything has been built. sown or planted in good faith. i. sowing or planting. is preclusive.. the law has provided a just solution by giving the owner of the land the option to acquire the improvements after payment of the proper indemnity.2) Whether petitioner is obliged to reimburse respondent-spouses the value of the new house minus the cost of the original house. such as in the instant case. Even as the option lies with the landowner. 448. Article 448 on builders in good faith does not apply where there is a contractual relation between the parties. shall have the right to appropriate as his own the works. we are constrained to rely on the presumption of good faith on the part of the respondent-spouses which the petitioner failed to rebut. we are constrained to apply Article 448 of the Civil Code.

ACDC failed to return to LBP the proceeds of the construction projects or the construction materials subject of the trust receipts. When the trust receipts matured. planted or sown on the land of another and the improvements or repairs made thereon. subject to the provisions of the following articles. as landowner. LBP filed a complaint for Estafa or violation of Art. respondent Angeles cannot be compelled to purchase the lots. Respondents were officers of Asian Construction and Development Corporation (ACDC). 166884 June 13. (358) FACTS: Petitioner Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) is a government financial institution and the official depository of the Philippines. petitioner may sell the lots to respondent Angeles at a price equivalent to the current fair value thereof. It may appropriate the new house by reimbursing respondent Angeles the current market value thereof minus the cost of the old house. 10. belong to the owner of the land. No.R. She can only be obliged to pay petitioner reasonable rent. against the respondent officers of ACDC. 2012 Art. Whatever is built. Under this option. Land Bankof the Philippines v. in relation to PD 115. by the principle of accession. After several demands went unheeded. 445. However. In conformity with the foregoing pronouncement. a corporation engaged in the construction business. par. 315. respondents executed in favor of Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) trust receipts to secure the purchase of construction materials that they will need in their construction projects. It is the owner of the land who is authorized to exercise the option. if the value of the lots is considerably more than the value of the improvement. Perez Erwin Fuentes G." In the alternative. and because. respondent Angeles would have "a right of retention which negates the obligation to pay rent.refuse to exercise either option. because his right is older. On several occasions. has two options. he is entitled to the ownership of the accessory thing. we hold that petitioner. ISSUE: . 1(b) of the RPC.

as an alternative. repudiates the idea that LBP intended to be the owner of those construction materials. whether raw or processed.1. When both parties enter into an agreement knowing that the return of the goods subject of the trust receipt is not possible even without any fault on the part of the trustee. Clearly. Article 1371 of the Civil Code provides that [i]n order to judge the intention of the contracting parties. 1999 sought the payment of the balance but failed to ask. or (2) when the entrustee fails to return the goods under trust.] intent to defraud is presumed when (1) the entrustee fails to turn over the proceeds of the sale of goods covered by the trust receipt to the entruster. their contemporaneous and subsequent acts shall be principally considered. its demand letter dated May 4. The fact that LBP had knowingly authorized the delivery of construction materials to a construction site of two government projects. despite the allegations in the affidavit-complaint wherein LBP sought the return of the construction materials. as well as unspecified construction sites. LBP should have been aware that the materials were to be used for the . where the borrower is obligated to pay the bank the amount spent for the purchase of the goods. it is not a trust receipt transaction penalized under Section 13 of P. under the Trust Receipts Law. The first is covered by the provision that refers to money under the obligation to deliver it (entregarla) to the owner of the merchandise sold. WONthe disputed transactions is a trust receipt or a loan? HELD: 1. The second is covered by the provision referring to merchandise received under the obligation to return it (devolvera) to the owner. 115. This transaction becomes a mere loan. Notably. if they are not disposed of in accordance with the terms of the trust receipts. as seen in the letters of credit it attached to its complaint. TRUST RECEIPT. LBP knew that ACDC was in the construction business and that the materials that it sought to buy under the letters of credit were to be used for the following projects: the Metro Rail Transit Project and the Clark Centennial Exposition Project. we can examine the contemporaneous actions of the parties rather than rely purely on the trust receipts that they signed in order to understand the transaction through their intent. In all trust receipt transactions. Thus. for the return of the construction materials or the buildings where these materials had been used. the only obligation actually agreed upon by the parties would be the return of the proceeds of the sale transaction. We note in this regard that at the onset of these transactions. There are two obligations in a trust receipt transaction. Under this provision. As a government financial institution.D. they were aware of the fact that there was no way they could recover the buildings or constructions for which the materials subject of the alleged trust receipts had been used. LBP had in fact authorized the delivery of the materials on the construction sites for these projects. both obligations on the part of the trustee exist in the alternative the return of the proceeds of the sale or the return or recovery of the goods.

petitioners sent respondent a letter notifying the latter of their intention to renew the contract for another. VS NAYONG PILIPINO FOUNDATION FACTS: In 1975. CA which held that the RTC erroneously applied the rules on accession. NO. WHEREFORE. It is renewable for a period of 25 years under the same terms and conditions upon due notice in writing to respondent of the intention to renew. In 1995. Under the new agreement. the ownership of these properties would still pertain to the government and not remain with the bank as they would be classified as property of the public domain. 76588. No costs. petitioner PVHI was bound to pay the monthly rentals Beginning January 2001. July of the same year. 2005 decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. would be used for the construction of a movable property. 2009 SULO SA NAYON. parties agreed to the renewal of the contract for another 25 years. under Article 445 of the Civil Code. SP No. As an immovable property. respondent leased a portion of the Nayong Pilipino Complex. consisting of cement. the ownership of whatever was constructed with those materials would presumably belong to the owner of the land. it is fundamental in a trust receipt transaction that the person who advanced payment for the merchandise becomes the absolute owner of said merchandise and continues as owner until he or she is paid in full. to be known as the Philippine Village Hotel.R.R. as found in Articles 448 and 546 of the Civil Code ISSUE: WON Sulo sa Nayon as builders have acted . the proceeds should be turned over to him or to her. Even if we consider the vague possibility that the materials. for the construction and operation of a hotel building. or if the goods had already been sold. as well as a property of the public domain. bolts and reinforcing steel bars. Inc. or until 2021. 170923 JANUARY 20. G. we DENY the petition and AFFIRM the January 20. to petitioner Sulo sa Nayon. MeTC rendered its decision in favor of respondent RTC which modified the ruling of the MeTC. petitioners defaulted in the payment of their monthly rental.construction of an immovable property. INC. or until May 1996. The lease was for an initial period of 21 years. Respondent repeatedly demanded petitioners to pay the arrears and vacate the premises. which is defined by the Civil Code as: In contrast with the present situation.

In the case at bar. or sows on land in which he believes himself to have a claim of title.. We affirm the ruling of the CA that introduction of valuable improvements on the leased premises does not give the petitioners the right of retention and reimbursement which rightfully belongs to a builder in good faith. 546 of the Civil Code may apply with respect to their rights over improvements. they recognize that the respondent is the owner of the land. a 325-square-meter land petitioners are the owners of Lot No. plants. such as a tenant. 2-S. that they have introduced on the leased premises with the permission of respondent.R. and not to lands where the only interest of the builder. 2-R. Otherwise. What petitioners insist is that because of the improvements. planter or sower is that of a holder. JR. 448 in relation to Art. JOSE MACABAGDAL. 2-S Respondent-spouses immediately demanded petitioners the house and vacate the property Investments adjacent to approval of to demolish . His rights are governed by LUCIANO BRIONES and NELLY BRIONES v. 150666 VILLARAMA. We reiterate the doctrine that a lessee is neither a builder in good faith nor in bad faith that would call for the application of Articles 448 and 546 of the Civil Code. petitioners constructed a house on Lot 2-R which they thought was Lot No. they should be considered builders in good faith who have the right to retain possession of the property until reimbursement by respondent. which are of substantial value. as lessees. J FACTS:      Respondent-spouses purchased from Vergon Realty Corporation (Vergon) Lot No. In fact. such a situation would allow the lessee to easily "improve" the lessor out of its property. MACABAGDAL and VERGON REALTY INVESTMENTS CORPORATION G. petitioners have no adverse claim or title to the land. which is respondents land After obtaining the necessary building permit and the Vergon. HELD: Article 448 is manifestly intended to apply only to a case where one builds. No.in good faith in order for Art. FE D.

after having chosen to sell his land. the latter should be presumed to have built the house in good faith. for instance. The owner is entitled to such remotion only when. Trial court and ca erred Article 527[14] of the Civil Code presumes good faith. Article 448 of the Civil Code governs The builder in good faith can compel the landowner to make a choice between appropriating the building by paying the proper indemnity or obliging the builder to pay the price of the land. When a person builds in good faith on the land of another. that the accessory follows the principal and not the other way around. petitioners’ house was built on the lot of the respondent-spouses. He cannot.. and the survey report made by the geodetic engineer. It is only if the owner chooses to sell his land. and since no proof exists to show that the mistake was done by petitioners in bad faith. CA further ruled that petitioners cannot use the defense of allegedly being a purchaser in good faith for wrongful occupation of land ISSUE: Whether CA was correct in affirming the decision of the trial court ordering the petitioner to demolish their only house and vacate the lot and pay damages HELD:            The petition is partly meritorious. that the owner may remove the improvements from the land.e. The choice belongs to the owner of the land. and the builder or planter fails to purchase it where its value is not more than the value of the improvements. a rule that accords with the principle of accession.    Respondent-spouses filed an action to recover ownership and possession CA affirmed the RTC’s finding contracts to sell. the other party fails to pay for the same Moreover. petitioners have the right to be indemnified for the necessary and useful expenses they may have made on the subject property This case must be remanded to the RTC which shall conduct the appropriate proceedings to assess the respective values of the improvement and of the land . i. compel the owner of the building to remove the building from the land without first exercising either option.

the courts may fix the duration thereof. 1992 and used them as their residence and the situs of their construction business. MACASAET G. situated at Banay-banay. employ marivic. Ismael and Teresita denied the existence of any verbal lease agreement. In the absence of a stipulation on this point. 546 and 548 of the NCC. 1197 of the civil Code allows the courts to fix the duration or the period. but by tolerance of Vicente and Rosario. Citing Calubayan v. that by way of a verbal lease agreement. 2004 Facts:           Petitioners Ismael and TeresitaMacasaet and Respondents Vicente and Rosario Macasaet are first-degree relatives. Issue: W. and that despite repeated demands. petitioners failed to pay the agreed rental of P500. 30. On appeal.SPS.O. Respondents alleged that they were the owners of 2 parcels of land. petitioners were necessarily bound by an implied promise to vacate the lots upon demand. 448 in relation to Art. pascual.MACASAET vs SPS. They added that it was the policy of respondents to allot the land they owned as an advance grant of inheritance in favor of their children. not by virtue of a verbal lease agreement. after payment of the indemnity provided for by Art. the issue is the duration of possession. 1997. but whose occupancy continued by tolerance of the owner. On December 10. the sister of Ismael. Article 1197. It opined that Ismael and Teresita had occupied the lots. Art. and help in resolving the problems of the family.the courts should fix the duration of possession. Consequently .R. They claimed that respondents had invited them to construct their residence and business on the subject lots in order that they could all live near one another.N. in ascertaining the right of the petitioners to be reimbursed for the improvements they had introduced on respondents properties. . the RTC allowed the respondents to appropriate the building and other improvements introduced by petitioners. Held:   That Ismael and Teresita had a right to occupy the lots is therefore clear. Ismael and Teresita occupied these lots in Mar. the appellate court applied the Civil Codes provisions on lease. As their stay was merely tolerance. Ismael is the son of respondents and Teresita is his wife. The MTCC ruled in favor of respondents and ordered petitioners to vacate the premises. the regional trial court updheld the findings fo the MTCC. 154391-92 Sept. However. Lipa City. but from its nature and the circumstances it can be inferred that a period was intended. The CA sustained the finding of the two lower courts that Ismael and Teresita had been occupying the subject lots only by the tolerance of Vicente and Rosario. the parents filed with the MTC of Lipa an ejectment suit against the children. If the obligation does not fix a period. the CA further ruled that petitioners status was analogous to that of a lessee or a tenant whose term of lease had expired.

After the sale.: Facts: Petitioners. MARIA COPRADA DECISION PERALTA.      The courts shall also fix the duration of the period when it depends upon the will of the debtor. because she was able to build the structure on the subject lot with the prior permission of the owner. with an area of 253 square meters and covered by a TCT claimed by the petitioners who are registered owner. under the condition that they will vacate the premises should petitioners need to use the same. respondent argued that she is a builder in good faith. there is a resolutory condition in such an agreement. Even granting. Coprada before the MCTC when the latter refused to vacate a parcel of land. Respondent occupied said lot and constructed their residential house. that respondent's claim of ownership is improper. and also. . respondent and her family have been occupying the subject premises free of rent. upon demand. It held that laches had already set in which prevented petitioners from questioning the validity of the purported sale between Victoria and Maria. Respondent stated that petitioners' claim is barred by laches. RTC reversed MCTC’s judgment ruling that respondent's occupation of the subject property was by virtue of petitioners' tolerance and permission. the CA reversed the Decision of the RTC and affirmed in toto the Decision of the MCTC. Due to their close relationship.000. SPOUSES MARCOS R. Upon review. respondent built on the lot a semi-concrete structure. However. Respondent alleged that Victoria sold to her for P2. without admitting. Furthermore. spouses Marcos Esmaquel and Victoria Sordevilla filed an ejectment case against respondent Maria V. Victoria Sordevilla's mother and original owner who gave permission to her late husband BrigidoCoprada to use the subject lot as their permanent abode. When Emiliana died. due to the fact that the lot is virtually a wasteland. hence. MCTC rendered judgment dismissing the complaint. Such qualification cannot be inferred from the facts of the present case. J. including payment of realty taxes. she averred that in 1945. The mere failure to fix the duration of their agreement does not necessarily justify or authorize the courts to do so It can be safely concluded that the agreement subsisted as long as the parents and the children mutually benefited from the arrangement.00 in installment and which was fully paid in 1962. Article 1197. applies to a situation in which the parties intended a period. however. ISSUE: WON petitioners have a valid ground to evict respondent from the subject property. Effectively. the agreement was never reduced to writing and since then she has been the one paying the realty taxes due on the property. EmilianaCoprada. ESMAQUEL & VICTORIA SORDEVILLA vs. respondent is bound by an implied promise that she will vacate the property upon demand and her possession became unlawful after the petitioners demanded her to vacate the property. because of her love and affection for her nephew. Their possession which was originally lawful became unlawful when the reason therefore – love and solidarity – ceased to exist between them. the ownership of the property was inherited by petitioner Victoria. Respondent admitted that petitioners are the registered owners of the subject land.

or any person or persons claiming under them. or other person. the lawful owners have a right to demand the return of their property at any time as long as the possession was unauthorized or merely tolerated. petitioner has a right to eject any person illegally occupying his property. As against the respondent's unproven claim that she acquired a portion of the property from the petitioners by virtue of an oral sale. the Court held that: [T]he Torrens System was adopted in this country because it was believed to be the most effective measure to guarantee the integrity of land titles and to protect their indefeasibility once the claim of ownership is established and recognized. Since respondent's occupation of the subject lot is by mere tolerance or permission of the petitioners. x xx Moreover. vendor. respondent is bound by an . Rule 70 of the Rules of Court. T-93542. citing the case of Co v. In Gaudencio Labrador. together with damages and costs. without any contract between them. In Bishop v. This right is never barred by laches.Subject to the provisions of the next succeeding section. the private respondents have a right to eject any person illegally occupying their property. the Torrens title of petitioners must prevail. threat. for the restitution of such possession. the power to pass upon the validity of such certificate of title at the first instance properly belongs to the Regional Trial Courts in a direct proceeding for cancellation of title. or other person against whom the possession of any land or building is unlawfully withheld after the expiration or termination of the right to hold possession by virtue of any contract. as Attorney-in-Fact v. . and regardless of the length of that possession. Who may institute proceedings. if at all. petitioner had a right to the possession of the property. Under existing statutory and decisional law. or stealth. or the legal representatives or assigns of any such lessor. vendee. the Court held that: x xxAs a registered owner. Militar. may. express or implied. Moreover. Even if it be supposed that they were aware of the petitioners' occupation of the property. Rodriguez. This right is imprescriptible and can never be barred by laches. It is a fundamental principle in land registration that the certificate of title serves as evidence of an indefeasible and incontrovertible title to the property in favor of the person whose name appears therein. This right is imprescriptible. registered in the name of the petitioners. As the registered owner. the age-old rule is that the person who has a Torrens title over a land is entitled to possession thereof. at any time within one (1) year after such unlawful deprivation or withholding of possession. intimidation. Petitioners' title over the subject property is evidence of their ownership thereof. which is one of the attributes of ownership.HELD: An action for forcible entry or unlawful detainer is governed by Section 1. as the registered owners. It is undisputed that the subject property is covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. represented by Lulu Labrador Uson. or a lessor. In Rodriguez v. a person deprived of the possession of any land or building by force. strategy. and when. Spouses Ildefonso Perlas and PacenciaPerlas and Spouse Rogelio Pobre and Melinda FogataPobre. we held. which provides: SECTION 1. Court of Appeals. petitioners' right to eject any person illegally occupying their property is not barred by laches. vendor. vendee. thus: As registered owners of the lots in question. It is settled that a Torrens Certificate of title is indefeasible and binding upon the whole world unless and until it has been nullified by a court of competent jurisdiction. bring an action in the proper Municipal Trial Court against the person or persons unlawfully withholding or depriving of possession.

failing which a summary action for ejectment is the proper remedy against her.e. She is aware that her tolerated possession may be terminated any time and she cannot be considered as builder in good faith. The commissioner who surveyed the property recommended that the land be divided into two. 1988 Facts: Spouses Del Campo. which allow full reimbursement of useful improvements and retention of the premises until reimbursement is made. she knew that her possession was by mere permission and tolerance of the petitioners. Verily. Estanislao Del Canto. persons whose occupation of a realty is by sheer tolerance of its owners are not possessors in good faith. and Barnarda Abesia filed for the partition of the property co-owned by them. meters for Spouses Del Campo and Del Canto and 15 sq. At the time respondent built the improvements on the premises in 1945. However. hence. meters for Abesia. . one who builds on land with the belief that he is the owner thereof. she cannot be said to be a person who builds on land with the belief that she is the owner thereof. Issue: Whether or not Article 448 should be applied. 30 sq. The court ruled that Article 448 of the civil code is inapplicable and the rules on co-ownership are more relevant over the encroaching strutrure and the land on which it was built. Since respondent's occupation of the subject property was by mere tolerance. It is well settled that both Article 448 and Article 546 of the New Civil Code.implied promise that she will vacate the same upon demand. Spouses Del Campo vs Bernarda Abesia Gr L-49219 April 15.. she has no right to retain its possession under Article 448 of the Civil Code. i. apply only to a possessor in good faith. it was found that the house built by Abesia encroached upon the part given to the plaintiffs.

However. the co-ownership was terminated by the partition of the property. Petitioners has the right to exercise the option provided in Article 448 as the builder in the case at bar is no longer the landowner. .Decision: The court ruled that Article 448 is inapplicable over constructions made by a co-owner on a land co-owned.