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Jose Gomez vs Court of Appeals

168 SCRA 503 Civil Law Land Titles and Deeds Judgment Confirms Title
Sec 30 & 32 PD 1529

A court ruling (Philippine Islands vs Abran) settled that 12 parcels of land

belonged to one Consolacion Gomez. Consolacion later died and the 12 parcels of
land were inherited by Jose Gomez et al her heirs. The heirs agreed to divide the
property among them.

After notice and publication, and there being no opposition to the application, the
trial court issued an order of general default. On August 5, 1981, the court rendered
its decision adjudicating the subject lots in Gomez et als favor. The decision
became final and executory hence the court directed the Chief of the General Land
Registration Office (GLRO) to issue the corresponding decrees of registration over
the lots adjudicated.

GLRO Chief Silverio Perez opposed the adjudication and petitioned for its setting
aside. He discovered that the 12 parcels of land were formerly part of a titled land
which was already granted by homestead patent in 1929. Under the law, land
already granted by homestead patent can no longer be the subject of another
registration. The lower court granted Silverios recommendation.

Gomez et al invoked Sec. 30 and 32 of PD 1529 (Land Registration Act) which

provides that after judgment has become final and executory, the court shall
forthwith issue an order to the Commissioner of Land Registration for the issuance
of the decree of registration and certificate of title. That once the judgment
becomes final and executory under Sec 30, the decree of registration must issue as
a matter of course.

ISSUE: Whether or not to set aside the lower courts initial ruling on approving the
adjudication even after it had became final and executory.

HELD: Yes. Unlike ordinary civil actions, the adjudication of land in a cadastral or
land registration proceeding does not become final, in the sense of
incontrovertibility until after the expiration of one (1) year after the entry of the
final decree of registration. The Supreme Court has held that as long as a final
decree has not been entered by the Land Registration Commission (now NLTDRA)
and the period of one (1) year has not elapsed from date of entry of such decree,
the title is not finally adjudicated and the decision in the registration proceeding
continues to be under the control and sound discretion of the court rendering it.
2. Serra vs. Court of Appeals, and RCBC
229 SCRA 60
January 1994

Petitioner Federico Serra, who is the owner of a 374 square meter parcel of land
located at Masbate, Masbate, and private respondent Rizal Commercial Banking
Corporation (RCBC) entered into a "Contract of Lease with Option to Buy" in May
25, 1975 which provided that Serra will lease the subject land to RCBC for a
period of 25 years from June 1, 1975 to June 1, 2000, that the RCBC has the option
to purchase the same at P210.00 per square meter within a period of 10 years from
May 25, 1975, the date of the signing of the Contract, and that Serra will have to
register said land under the Torrens System to the Register of Deeds of Province of
Masbate within the same 10-year option period. Pursuant to said contract, RCBC
constructed improvements on the subject land to house its branch office, while the
petitioner had the property, within 3 years from 1975, duly registered with OCT
No. 0-232 under the Torrens System. Later, petitioner alleged that as soon as he
had the property registered, he kept on pursuing the branch manager for the sale of
the lot as per their agreement, but it was not until September 4, 1984, that RCBC
decided to exercise the option.

RCBC informed petitioner, through a letter, of its intention to buy the property at
the agreed price of not greater than P210.00 per square meter or a total of
P78,430.00, but petitioner replied that he is no longer selling the property. RCBC
then filed an action for specific performance and damages against Serra in March
1985 alleging that during the negotiations it made clear to petitioner that it intends
to stay permanently on property once its branch office is opened unless the
exigencies of the business requires otherwise.

Although finding that the contract was valid, the lower court ruled that the option
to buy is unenforceable because it lacked a consideration distinct from the price
and RCBC did not exercise its option within the reasonable time. Upon motion for
reconsideration, however, the lower court reversed itself on the 2nd issue, declared
the contract as valid, and ordered Serra to deliver the proper deed of sale to RCBC.
The Court of Appeals likewise affirmed said decision.


Was there a valid contract of lease with option to buy between the parties? Was
there a consideration distinct from the price to support the option given to RCBC?


The Supreme Court affirmed the appellate courts decision. A contract of adhesion
is one wherein a party, usually a corporation, prepares the stipulations in the
contract, while the other party merely affixes his signature or his "adhesion"
thereto. These types of contracts are as binding as ordinary contracts because in
reality, the party who adheres to the contract is free to reject it entirely.

In the case at bar, the Supreme Court did not find the situation to be inequitable
because petitioner is a highly educated man, who, at the time of the trial was
already a CPA-Lawyer, and when he entered into the contract, was already a CPA,
holding a respectable position with the Metropolitan Manila Commission. It is
evident that a man of his stature should have been more cautious in transactions he
enters into, particularly where it concerns valuable properties. Also, in the present
case, the consideration is even more onerous on the part of the lessee since it
entails transferring of the building and/or improvements on the property to
petitioner, should respondent bank fail to exercise its option within the period


Three consolidated cases are resolved, given that there are same parties and parcels
of land in question.

1) In the first case, the heirs of the late Juan Reyes filed an application for
registration of the subject parcel of land, which resulted in an OCT. After the heirs
tried to take possession of the property, a reconveyance of property was filed
against them by Vencila et al., asserting that:

a. They have acquired the land by purchase or inheritance and in OCEN

possession for 30 years
b. The parcels of land that they own were by mistake part of Juan Reyes estate

2) The second case involved the death of the administratix of the estate of the
owners/heirs of the land. After her death, a TCT was issued in the name of Pedro
Luspo, and another was issued in the name of several persons. A writ of possession
was issued by the trial court against petitioners.

3) The third case involved one of the registered owners of the land who filed a
petition for complaint against the occupants who refused to vacate the land and
sign the Sheriffs return.

The heirs of Juan Reyes moved to dismiss the case of reconveyance stating that the
other parties had no cause of action and that they were barred by prior judgement

The lower court denied the motion to dismiss, then set aside the same order, and
then reversed itself partially (some cases were dismissed, some were not -- since
there were several petitioners). The parties whose cases were dismissed appealed to
the SC.

These petitioners contend that they were not claimants-oppositors nor defeated
oppositors in the said land registration case, as their names dont appear in the
amended application for registration. They argue that they have occupied the
parcels of land for more than 30 years which began long before the application for
registration and that even after registration, they continued to possess the land.


1) Whether or not res judicata is applicable in an action for reconveyance

2) Whether or not the writ of possession may be issued against them considering
that the petitioners were not the defeated parties in the registration case

1. No. Res judicata applies to all cases and proceedings, including land registration
and cadastral proceedings. A final judgment is conclusive even in subsequent cases
involving the same parties and their successors-in-interest as long as the ff.
requisites are present:

a. The former judgment must be final

b. Rendered by a court having jurisdiction on the subj matter and of the parties
(CFI Bohol had jurisdiction)
c. The judgment was based on the merits
d. There is identity of parties, subj matter, and cause of action between the first and
second actions (Land registration and action for reconveyance)

2. Yes. A writ of possession may be issued not only against a person who has been
defeated in a registration case but also against anyone unlawfully and adversely
occupying the land or any portion thereof during the land registration proceedings
up to the issuance of the final decree.
Note: In a registration case, the judgment confirming the title of the applicant and
ordering its registration in his name necessarily carries with it the right of
ownership (right to possess-may be obtained through writ of possession).

On the issue of contempt, the court ruled that the occupants were not guilty.
Contempt only applies when after the sheriff dispossess or eject the occupants,
they enter/attempt to enter the property. It was the sheriffs and not the petitioners
fault that there was delivery of possession was unsuccessful.


CASE NO.: G. R. No. 33677. February 23, 1990. 182 SCRA



The heirs of the late Juan Reyes filed an application for registration of the parcels
of land allegedly inherited by them from Juan Reyes. A complaint for
reconveyance of properties where filed by Vencilao Vencilao et al. alleged
that they are the lawful owners of their respective parcels of land including the
improvements thereon either by purchase or inheritance and have been in
possession publicly, continuously, peacefully and adversely under the concept of
owners for more than thirty (30) years tacked with the possession of their
predecessors-in-interest. Those parcels of land were included in the parcels of land
applied for registration by the heirs of Juan Reyes, either by mistake or fraud and
with the intention of depriving them of their rights of ownership and possession
without their knowledge, not until the last part of 1960 when the heirs of Juan
Reyes through their agents, attempted to enter those parcels of land claiming that
they now belong to the heirs of Juan Reyes. Upon the death of administratrix
Bernardina Vda. De Luspo (Juan Reyes heir} a Transfer of Certificate of tilte was
issued to several persons. A writ of possession was issued by the trial court against
Vencilao et al. Petitioners refused to sign and vacate. Mario Oligalve (Juan Reyes)
filed a petition for contempt. An order finding the petitioners where issued.
Petitioners filed the present petition.


Whether or not a writ of possession maybe issued to anyone who unlawfully and
adversely occupying the land during the registration proceedings up to the issuance
of the final decree.


In a registration case, the judgment confirming the title of the applicant and
ordering its registration in his name necessarily carried with it the delivery of
possession, which is an inherent element of the right of ownership. The issuance of
the writ of possession is, therefore, sanctioned by existing laws in this jurisdiction
and by the generally accepted principle upon which the administration of justice
rests. A writ of possession may be issued not only against the person who has been
defeated in a registration case but also against anyone unlawfully and adversely
occupying the land or any portion thereof during the land registration proceedings
up to the issuance of the final decree.


CASE NO.: L-1917, 83 Phil 637
PONENTE: Perfecto


Maglasang secured the registration in his name lots No. 8898 and 5106 of
the cadastral survey of Ormoc, Leyte. He sought from the trial court a writ of
possession against several persons. Trial court ordered the issuance of the writ of
possession against Alejandra Conde and Santiago Tumolak (respondents) with
respect to lot no. 5106, it appearing that said persons were claimants-oppositors
and that their claims were dismissed, but denied the petition as regards the other
persons who took possession of the lots in question after final adjudication of the
case upon the theory that said persons cannot be expelled from their possession by
a mere motion unless they are brought to courts of justice by independent ordinary
action, invoking said effect the doctrine laid down by the SC in Yumul vs. Rivera
and Dizon.
Maglasang now seeks from the SC mandatory order to compel the
respondent judge to issue a writ of possession against respondents regarding whom
the latter denied the issuance of such writ.


WON a writ of possession may be issued against persons who took possession of
the lots after issuance of final decree?


No, Petition denied

Respondent judge acted correctly in refusing to issue the writ of
possession prayed for.
The person who took possession of the lots in question after the final
adjudication of the same in registration proceedings cannot be summarily
ousted through a writ of possession secured by a mere motion.
Regardless of any title or lack of title of said persons to hold
possession of the lots in question, they cannot be ousted without giving them
their day in court in a proper independent proceeding.