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a. Donations of real property (like land) must be in a
public instrument, otherwise the alienation will be null
Compiled and edited by ED C. BATACAN and void even as between the parties. On the other
hand, the donation of a movable (like a ring valued at
say P 5,000.00), needs only to be in a private
PROPERTY, concept of : instrument. (see Art. 748, NCC).

(Civil law concept) all things whether tangible or intangible b. The ownership over a real property may be acquired
which are or may be the object of appropriation. ( see Art. 414 NCC ). by prescription (see Art. 1137) in 30 years (bad faith);
whereas acquisition of personal property in bad faith
What is appropriation? needs only 8 years (see Art. 1132, NCC).

The New Civil Law Code does not define what is appropriation, c. Generally, to affect third persons, transactions
but it has been considered as equivalent to occupation, which is the involving real property must be recorded in the
willful apprehension of a corporeal object, which has no owner, and registry of Property; this is not so in the case of
with intent to acquire its ownership. personal property.

PROPERTY, classification of: (See art. 414, NCC). QUESTION: May parties by agreement treat as personal property
a. Immovable or real property; and which by classification under the law be real property?
b. Movable or personal property.
It would seem that under the Civil Code, it is only
Note: According to some authors, the classification given in the
Art.414 is not complete in that there should be a third classification LAW which may consider certain real property (like
the mixed or the semi-immovable. This classification refers to growing crops) as personal property for the purpose of
movable properties like machines or removable houses or making a chattel mortgage. (See Art. 416, par.2). Also,
transplantable trees which under certain conditions, may be for purposes of taxation, a real property may be
considered immovable by virtue of their being attached to an considered as personal property.
immovable for certain specified purposes.
Importance of the classification:

It does not assume its importance from the fact of mobility or BUILDING is considered immovable property. Even if the
non-mobility but from the fact that different provisions of the law owner of the land is different from the owner of the building
govern the acquisition, possession, disposition, loss and registration of constructed on such land, the building does not lose its
immovable and movable. immovable character.
b.) Immovables by incorporation those which are essentially
If a chattel mortgage is constituted over a building separately movables, but
owned by the mortgagor, the same may still be valid and are attached to an immovable in
effective between the contracting parties by reason of estoppel such
provided no rights of third persons who are in good faith are manner as to become an integral part
impaired. However, in case of foreclosure, the mortgagor may thereof. [Examples: those mentioned
proceed in accordance with the rules on foreclosure of real in par
estate mortgage. 1, 2, 3, 4 & 6, Art. 415, except land,
buildings and roads];
The general rule is that machinery and equipment used for an
industry or works may not be validly subject to replevin so long c.) Immovables by destination those which are essentially movables,
as they are intended by the owner for an industry and they but
directly meet the needs of the industry [they are considered as by the purpose for which they have been
real property]. They are not subject to replevin which is an placed in an immovable, partake the
action to recover specific personal property. The exception is nature of
that when the machinery is placed by lessee in the real estate the latter because of the added utility
leased to him by the owner of the real estate. The exception to derived
the exception is that when the lessee places the machinery on therefrom, such as those mentioned in
the state as an agent of the owner-lessor. pars 4,
6, 7 & 9 of Art. 415);

d.) Immovables by analogy or by law those mentioned in par 10, art.

415; right of usufruct; easements

Classes of Immovable:
Art. 415. The following are immovable property:

a.) Immovables by nature those which cannot be moved from place

to place PARAGRAPH 1: land, buildings, roads and constructions of all kinds
because of their nature, such as land (par 1 adhered to the soil.
415), mines, quarries and slag dumps (par 8, REMINDERS :

Land is the best example of immovable property. It is
immovable by its very nature. And even, if land is moved by an REMINDERS :
earthquake or an extra-ordinary happening, the land should still
be considered immovable. Trees and plants no matter what their size may be are
considered real property-by nature, if they are the spontaneous
Even if land is rented, it is still considered as immovable. products of the soil, and by incorporation, if they were planted
thru labor.
A shovelful of land however, should be considered personal
property since this no longer adheres to the soil. The moment they are detached or uprooted from the land, they
become personal property, except in the case of uprooted
Buildings of permanent structure are always classified as timber, if the land is timberland, because although no longer
immovable. It is immaterial whether it is built on a rented or attached, the timber still forms an integral part of the
owned land. The nature of the building as property does not timberland.
depend on the way the parties deal with it [see: Leung Yee vs
Strong Machinery Co. 37 Phil. 664.] Ungathered fruits when the land is being leased by another,
and the fruits belong to the tenant, the fruits may be considered
Buildings are considered immovable provided they are more or as immovable because no exception or qualification is made
less of a permanent structure, substantially adhering to the under the Civil Code. However, when the fruits although
land, and not mere super-impositions on the law. ungathered are sold, as when the entire harvest is sold before
being actually gathered, it is considered as a sale of movables.
A dismantled building or house and/or the materials of such In the case of Sibal vs Valdez, 50 Phil 512, the Supreme Court
dismantled house should be regarded as personal properties, held that for purposes of attachment and execution, and for
see: Biscerra vs. Teneza, 11-29-62; L-16218. purposes of the Chattel Mortgage Law, ungathered products
have the nature of personal property.
Constructions of all kinds. It is understood that the
attachment must be more or less permanent. A wall or a fence
are good examples of this kind of immovable by incorporation.
As long as there is an intent to permanently annex the same, it PARAGRAPH 3: Everything attached to an immovable in a fixed
is immaterial whether the materials used is only made of stone. manner,
Railroad tracks or rails come under this category. in such a way that it cannot be separated therefrom
without breaking the material or deterioration of the
Wooden scaffoldings on which carpenters stand while object.
constructing a house are merely personal property in view of
the lack of adherence to the soil or the intent to permanently REMINDERS :
annex the same to the soil.

Under this paragraph, for the incorporated thing to be

PARAGRAPH 2: Trees, plants and growing crops, while they are considered real property, the injury or breakage or deterioration
attached to the land or form an integral part of an in case of separation, must be substantial. [Examples: A fixed
fire escape stairway firmly embedded in the walls of the house; obligation on the part of the owner to reimburse the lessee. It
and aqueduct; or a sewer or a well. has been held that the tenant acts as an agent of the owner in
giving by contract a permanent destination to them (See:
If the thing incorporated is temporarily removed with the Valdez vs. Central Altagracia, 255 U.S. 58).
intention to replace the same, the thing is considered as
personal property because the incorporation had ceased. The
material fact of incorporation or separation is what determines PARAGRAPH 5: machinery, receptacles, instruments, or implements
the condition of the tenement, it recovers its conditions as intended by the owner of the tenement for an industry
movables, irrespective of the intention of the owner. or works which may be carried on in a building or on a
piece of land, and which tend directly to meet the needs
of the said industry or works.
PARAGRAPH 4: Statues, reliefs, paintings or other objects for use or
ornamentation, placed in building or on land by the REMINDERS :
owner of the immovable in such a manner that it
reveals a.) These are immovables by purpose or destination.
the intention to attach them permanently to the
tenements. b.) Essential requisites:

1. The placing must be made by the owner of the tenement, his
agent, or duly authorized legal representative;
These are immovables both by incorporation and by
destination. Examples: A fixed statue in the garden of the 2. The industry or works must be carried on in the building or on
house; a permanent painting on the ceiling; a picture embedded the land;
in the concrete walls of a house; a rug or carpet fastened to the
floor (wall-to-wall carpeting). 3. The machines, etc. must tend directly to meet the needs of
The objects must be placed by the owner of the immovable industry, and not merely incidental.
(buildings or lands) and not necessarily the owner of the object.

The owner of the building or land may act thru his agent or if A transportation business is not carried on in a building or in the
insane, thru his duly appointed guardian. compound. (See: Mindanao Bus Co. vs City assessor, 9-29-62)

If placed by a mere tenant, the objects must remain chattels or Cash registers, typewriters, etc. usually found and used in
personality (See: Davao Sawmill vs. Castillo, 61 Phil 709). hotels, restaurants, theaters, etc., are merely incidentals, and
not and should not be considered immobilized by destination for
Where the owner of a tenement entered into a contract with a these business can continue or carry on their functions without
lessee, stipulating that the lessee shall place certain objects in these equipments. The same applies to the repair or service
the property leased, and that such objects shall remain with the shop of the transportation business because the vehicles may
property upon the termination of the lease, without any be repaired or serviced in another shop belonging to another.
temporarily, the property continues to be immovable, inasmuch
Machineries of breweries used in the manufacture of liquor and as par. 5 refers not to real property by incorporation, but to real
soft drinks, though movable by nature, are immobilized because property by destination or purpose.
they are essential to said industries; but the delivery trucks and
adding machines which they usually own and use and are found
within their industrial compounds are merely incidentals and PARAGRAPH 6: Animal houses, pigeon-houses, beehives, fishponds or
retain their movable nature. breeding places or similar nature, in case their owner
has placed them or preserves them with the intention to
Machinery which is movable in its nature only becomes have them permanently attached to the land, and
immobilized when placed in a plant by the owner of the forming a permanent part of it; the animals in these
property or plant. But not when so placed by a tenant, places are included.
usufructuary, or any person having only a temporary right a
tenant, unless such person acted as the agent of the owner.
Machines placed in a sugar central and therefore, if the central
has already been the subject of mortgage, they are
immobilized by purpose. In the case of BH Berkenkotter vs Cu The houses referred to here may already be deemed included in
Unjieng, 61 Phil 663, the Supreme Court held: Machinery par. 1 when speaking of constructions of all kinds adhered to
intended by the owner of any building or land for the use in the soil.
connection with any industry or trade being carried on therein
and which are expressly adapted to meet the requirements of Even if the animals are temporarily outside, they may still be
such trade, are considered as real property. If the installation of considered as real property as long as the intent to return is
the machinery and equipment in question in the central present, as in case of a homing pigeon.
converted them into real property by reason of their purpose, it
cannot be said that their incorporation therewith was not But from the viewpoint of criminal law, they are considered as
permanent in character because, as essential and principal personal property and may properly and may properly be the
elements of a sugar central, without them the sugar central objects of theft or robbery.
would be unable to function or carry on the industrial purpose
for which it was established. The new machinery must, When the animals inside the permanent animal houses are
therefore, be considered as subject to the real estate mortgage alienated onerously or gratuitously, it is believed that the
in favor of the defendant. transaction is an alienation of personal property, unless the
building or the tenement itself is also alienated. This is because
Effect of separation. If the machines are still in the building, in said alienation, the animal structures must of necessity be
but no longer used in the industry conducted therein, the detached from the immovable. Hence an ordinary inter-vivos
machines revert to the condition of a chattel. The moment they donation of a pigeon-house need not be in a public instrument.
are separated from the purpose of the industry (not necessarily
from the immovable), they recover (the separation is not
necessarily from the immovable), their condition as movables PARAGRAPH 7: Fertilizers actually used on a piece of land.
(see: Ago vs Court of Appeals, 6 SCRA 530). On the other hand,
if still needed for the industry, but separated from the tenement

A floating house tied to a shore or bank post and used as a

Fertilizers still in the barn and even those already on the ground residence is considered real property, considering that the
but wrapped inside some newspapers or any other covering are waters on which it floats, are considered immovables. In a
still to be considered personal property, for they have not yet way, we may say that the classification of the accessory (the
been actually used or spread over the land. floating house) follows the classification of the principal (the
waters). However, if the floating house makes it a point to travel
The fertilizers should be on the land where they are to be from place to place, it assumes the category of a vessel.
utilized, because it is only that the intention of the owner to use
them on the tenement is beyond doubt. Hence, fertilizers kept By express provision of Art. 585 of the code of commerce ,
in the farmhouse are not immovable. vessels are movable property; but they partake, to a certain
extent, of the nature and conditions of the property, on account
of their value and importance in the world of commerce. (see:
PARAGRAPH 8: Mines, quarries, and slag dumps while the matter Rubiso vs Rivera, 37 Phil. 72).
forms part of the bed, and waters, either running or stagnant. Vessels are considered personal property. As a matter of fact,
they are indeed very movable. (see: PRC vs Jarque, 61 Phil 229).
Because they are personal property, they may be the subject of
the chattel mortgage. ( see McMicking vs Espanol-Filipino, 13
Mines, including the minerals still attached thereto, are real Phil 429; Arroyo vs Yu de Sane, 54 Phil7).
properties, but when the minerals have been extracted, the
latter become chattels. (see: 40 CJ 903) PARAGRAPH 10: Contracts for public works, and servitudes and other
Slag dump is the dirt and soil taken from a mine and piled upon rights over immovable property.
the surface of the ground. Inside the dump can be found the
minerals. REMINDERS :

The waters referred to are those still attached to or running The properties referred to in this paragraph are not material
thru the soil or ground. But the water itself as distinguished thing but rights, which are necessarily intangible. The piece of
from waters is clearly personal property. On the other hand, paper on which the contract for the public works has been
canals, rivers, lakes, and such part of the sea as may be the written is necessarily personal property, but the contract itself,
object of appropriation, are classified as real property. or the right of the contract is real property.

A servitude or easement is an encumbrance imposed on an

PARAGRAPH 9: Docks and structures which, though floating, are immovable for the benefit of another owner, or for the benefit
intended by of a person, group of person, or a community, like the easement
their nature and object to remain at a fixed place on a river, or coast. of right of way.

Other real rights over real property include real estate Examples: Electricity, gas, light, nitrogen (see: US vs Carlos, 21 Phil.
mortgage, antichresis, possessory retention, usufruct, leases of 543);
real property, if registered; or even if not registered, if their
duration is for more than a year. 4.) In general, all things which can be transported from place to place
Usufruct of personal property or a lease of personal property, impairment of the real property to which they are fixed.
should be considered personal property.
Examples : Machinery not attached to land nor needed for the
In the case of Presbitero vs. Fernandez (March 30, 1958), the carrying on of an
Supreme Court held that sugar quotes are real property, for industry conducted therein;
they are by law considered real rights over immovable
property just like servitudes and easements.

a) If the property is capable of being carried from place to place; (test

Art. 416. The following things are deemed to be personal property; by
1.) Those movables susceptible of appropriation which are not included
in the b) If such change in location can be made without injuring the real
preceding article; property to which it may in the meantime be attached; (test by
Examples: cell phones; money; ring; cars.
c) And if finally, the object is not one of those enumerated or included
in Art. 415; (test by exclusion)
2.) Real property which by any special provision of law is considered as
personalty; Then the inevitable conclusion is that the property is personal property.

Examples: Par. 2 Growing crops for the purpose of the Chattel Note: Test by exclusion is superior to test by description.
Mortgage Law
(see: Sibal vs Valdez, 50 Phil. 512); machinery placed on a
tenement Art. 417. The following are also considered as personal property:
by a tenant, who did not act as the agent of the tenement
owner 1.) Obligations and actions which have for their object
(see: Davao Sawmill vs. Castillo, 61 Phil. 709); movables or demandable sums; and

3.) Forces of nature which are brought under control by science; and REMINDERS :

The term obligations really refers to credits and also a.) As to nature:
includes bonds, which are technically obligations of the
entity issuing them; 1.) Consumables Those whose used according to their nature
destroys the
Actions if somebody steals my car, my right to bring substance of the thing or causes their loss to the
action to recover the automobile is personal property by owner.
itself; A promissory note is a personal property; the right to Food is an example of a consumable thing.
collect it is also a personal property;
2.) Non-consumables any other kind of movable property.

2) Shares of stock of agricultural, commercial and industrial

entities b.) As to the intention of the parties:
although they may have real estate.
1.) Fungibles Those replaceable by an equal quality and
REMINDERS : quantity, either
by the nature of things, or by common
Although the provisions of par. 2 seem to refer only to
corporations by the words shares of stocks, and only to 2.) Non-fungibles Those irreplaceable, because the identical
those engaged in agriculture, commerce, and industry, objects
nevertheless, all juridical persons must be deemed included. must be returned.

A share of stock in a gold mining corporation is also personal Notes : - it is the intention of the parties to a contract that determines
property; but the gold mine itself, as well as any land of the whether
corporation, is regarded as real property by the law. The the object is fungible or non-fungible and not the consumable
certificate itself evidencing ownership of the share, as well or non-
as the share itself, is regarded as personal property. Being consumable nature of the thing.
personal, it may be the object of a chattel mortgage (see:
Chua Guan vs. Samahang Magsasaka, Inc. 62 Phil. 472) - a consumable object may not necessarily be fungible since it
is the
A half interest in drugstore business is personal property intention of the parties to a contract that determines whether
capable of being the subject of a chattel mortgage (see: or not
Strochecher vs. Ramirez, 44 Phil. 933). However, a half- the object is fungible.
interest in a drugstore, considered as a building (not a
business) is a real right in real property and is therefore by PROPERTY IN RELATION TO THE PERSON
itself a real property. TO WHOM IT BELONGS

CLASSIFICATION OF MOVABLES: Art. 419. property is either of public dominion or of private

c.) They cannot be registered under the Land Registration Law;
The State may own properties both in its public capacity (public d.) They cannot be acquired by prescription;
dominion) and e.) They are outside the commerce of man;
private capacity (patrimonial). f.) They cannot be burdened by any voluntary easement.

Public dominion ownership by the state in its public capacity or in Property for PUBLIC USE, defined :
exercise of governmental functions. Can be used by everybody, even by strangers or aliens in
accordance with its nature; but nobody can exercise over it the
Patrimonial ownership by the state in its private capacity or in the rights of a private owner. Thus, no private person can have a
course of property right in the use of a street for his private business, nor
its proprietary functions. This is the property over can he acquire over is such a right to possession as would
which the require the exercise of possessory actions.
State has the same rights, and for which it may dispose,
to the Notes: See: Laurel vs. Garcia, 187 SCRA 797
same extent as private individuals in relation to their
subject only to the administrative laws and regulations on Republic vs. Gonzales, 199 SCRA 788
procedure of exercising such rights. They exist for the FACTS: The government owns two parcels of land being
State to occupied by appellants. Appellants introduced improvement thereon by
attain its economic ends, as a means for its subsistence, filling it up and putting commercial buildings. Their occupation of the
and the lands was covered by lease agreement and sales application. Later, the
preservation of its natural organism. government passed a law calling for the widening of the streets and
establishment of parking lots, and for which reason they were
Art. 420. The following things are property of public dominion: demanded to vacate the land. They contended that the setting aside of
the lots occupied by them for parking purposes does not redound to
1.) Those intended for public use, such as roads, canals, rivers the benefit of the public. They claim that only those certain privileged
torrents, ports and bridges constructed by the state, banks, shores, individuals, i.e. those who have cars, can avail of the parking facility
roadsteads, and others of similar character; without any advantage accruing to the general public. HELD: The
conception urged by appellants to restrict property reserved for public
2.) Those which belong to the state, without being for public use, and use to include only property susceptible of being used by a generally
are unlimited number of people is flawed and obsolete, since the number
intended for some public service or for the development of the of the users is not the yardstick in determining whether property is
national wealth. properly reserved for public use or benefit. To constitute public use, the
public in general should have equal or common rights to use the land
CHARACTERISTICS: or facility involved on the same terms, however limited in the number
of people who can actually avail themselves of it at a given time. There
a.) They may be real or personal; is nothing in the law which excludes non-car owners from using a
b.) They cannot be levied or attached; widened street or a parking area should they in fact happen to be
driving cars; the opportunity to avail of the use thereof remains open Note: When change takes effect:
for the public in general.
Property of public dominion ceases to be such and becomes
QUESTION : Are rivers whether navigable or not, properties of public private property of the State only upon declaration by the
dominion? government, thru the legislative or executive
departments, to the effect that it is no longer needed for
Answer : It would seem that Art. 420 makes no distinction. public use or public service. If the property has been
intended for such use or service, and the government has not
However: devoted it to other uses, or adopted any measure which
amounted to a withdrawal thereof from public use or service,
a. In the case of the Palanca vs. Commonwealth, 40 OG 148, the same remains property for public use or service
the Supreme Court said: The river Viray and the estero Sapang notwithstanding the fact that it is not actually devoted for public
Sedoria, being navigable, useful for commerce, for navigation, and use or service. (See: Capitulo, et. Al. vs Aquino 53 OG1477)
fishing, they have the character of public domain.

b. in the case of Taleon vs. Secretary of Public Works, L- Who shall declare? In the case of Faustino vs Dir. Of Lands, L-
24281, May 16, 1967, it was held that if a river is capable in its natural 12958, May 30, 1960, the Supreme Court, (citing Natividad vs.
state of being used for commerce, it is navigable in fact, and therefore, Dir. Of Lands, CA 37 OG 2905 said that only the executive and
becomes a public river. possibly the legislative departments have the authority and
power to make the declaration that any land so gained by the
c.) In the case of Martinez vs Court of Appeals, 56 SRCA sea is not necessary for purposes of public utility, or for the
647, it was held that navigable rivers are outside the commerce of man establishment of special industries. If no such declaration has
and therefore cannot be registered under the Land Registration Law. If been made by the said departments, the lot in question forms
converted into fishponds, the latter can be demolished notwithstanding part of the public domain. Consequently, until there is made
the Title, for said Title cannot convert the streams into private ones. a formal declaration on the part of the government thru the
executive department or the legislature, the parcel in question
d. The Municipal Council of Cavite in 1907 withdrew and excluded from continues to be part of the public domain and cannot be subject
public to acquisitive prescription.
use a part of its plaza in order to lease the same for the benefit of
defendant Rojas. Issue was the validity of the lease. HELD: The lease is
null and void, because streets and plazas are outside the commerce of See: Coaco vs. Bercilles, 66 SCRA 481.
man, since they are properties for public use. In creating the lease, the See also: International Hardwood vs. Univ. of the Philippines, August
municipality exceeded its authority because it did something it was not 13, 1991,
empowered to do. 200 SCRA 554.

Art. 422. Property of public dominion, when no longer intended OWNERSHIP IN GENERAL
for public use or for public use or for public service, shall form part of
the patrimonial property of the state.

Art. 427. Ownership may be exercised over things or rights. A
person has the right to control a thing particularly in his possession, - It is sort of self-defense, where the use of such necessary
enjoyment, disposition, and recovery, subject to no restriction except force to
those imposed by the law. protect proprietary or possessory rights constitutes a
circumstance under the Penal Code;

The actual invasion of property may be:

1.) imposed by law easement of right of way;
2.) imposed by state police power; power of taxation; power of a. mere disturbance of possession force may be used
eminent against it at any time as long as it continues, even beyond the
domain; prescriptive period for an action of forcible entry. Thus if a ditch
3.) Imposed by owner in cases of lease, the owner cannot in the opened by Pedro in the land of Juan, the latter may close it or cover it
meantime by force at any time;
physically occupy the property; (also pledges);
4. Imposed by grantor the donor may prohibit the donee from b. real dispossession force, to regain possession can only be
partitioning the used immediately after the dispossession. Thus, if Juan without the
property for a period not exceeding 20 years; permission of Pedro, picks up a book belonging to the latter and runs
off with it, Pedro can pursue Juan and recover the book by force.
SELF-HELP, doctrine of :

Nature of the aggression:

Art. 429. The owner or lawful possessor of a thing has disposal
thereof. For this purpose, he may use such force as may be reasonably The aggression must be illicit or unlawful. The right to self-
necessary to repeal or prevent an actual or threatened unlawful help is not available against the exercise of right by another,
physical invasion or usurpation of his property. such as when the latter executes an extra-judicial abatement of
nuisance. Neither can it be used against the lawful exercise of
This article was taken from Art. 227 of the German Civil Code which the functions of a public official, such as a sheriff attaching
provides: property.

An act impelled by legitimate necessity shall not be unlawful. The act however need not be illicit from the subjective point of
Legitimate necessity consists in the defense indispensable to repel, view. It is immaterial that the aggression is executed because of
personally or thru another, an actual or unjust situation. error of fact or law; the existence of a danger of violation of law
and right is sufficient, for the possessor is not a position to the
Principle of self-help: error of the aggressor and he has to make a quick decision.

- It is lawful to repel force by means of force. It implies that Note: There is no obligation to indemnify for the damage caused by
the state of things to be defended enjoys juridical the defense
protection. against unlawful aggression or against dangerous objects.
Effect of mistake the right to act in a state of necessity depends
upon the objective existence of the danger with the requisites provided
ACTS IN A STATE OF NECESSITY, doctrine of : by law. If through error, one believed himself to be in a state of
necessity, or used means in excess of the requirements, his act would
be illicit and the owner of the property used against him the defensive
Art. 432. the owner of a thing has no right to prohibit the force authorized in Art. 429.
interference of another with the same, if the interference is necessary
to avert an imminent danger and the threatened damage, compared to Effect of negligence The law does not require that the person
the damaged arising to the owner from the interference, is much acting in a state of necessity be free from negligence in the creation of
greater. The owner may demand from the person benefited indemnity such situation. Thus, if a person picks up an unknown object in a drug
for the damage to him. store and eats it, thinking it to be candy, and it turns out to be poison,
he can lawfully drink any antidote he may find in the store, even
without the consent of the owner.
Basis of liability The obligation to indemnity does not depend upon
imputability. The basis of the liability is the benefit derived.
This article, following the same principle of self-help contained
in the second part of article 429, allows the use of defensive Conflict of rights The right of self-help under Article 429 is not
force to preserve an existing situation, as against an external available against an act in a state of necessity.
event which the passive subject is entitled to repel as much as
an unlawful aggression by another.
Examples of danger contemplated by this article are the attack
of animals, the spread of fire, the threat of flood, etc. The
attacking animal, belonging to another may be killed by the Just compensation The fair and full equivalent for the loss
victim; a house in the path of a fire may be demolished; and a sustained (Mla. Railroad vs. Velasquez, 32 Phil 286).
dike may be destroyed at one point to prevent a flood over
other places. The law permits the injury or destruction of things The market value of the condemned property plus consequential
belonging to other provided this is necessary to avert a greater damages less consequential benefits (Manila Railroad vs. Fabie, 17 Phil.
danger. 208); See also EPZA vs. Dulay, 149 SCRA 305.

1.) Existence of an evil sought to be avoided;
2.) The injury feared is greater than that done to avoid it;
3.) That there be no other practical and less harmful means of Art 440. The ownership of property gives the right by accession to
preventing it; everything which is produced thereby, or which is incorporated or
4.) The means employed is necessary and indispensable to avert attached thereto, either naturally or artificially.
Accession, meaning of :
In the contract of antichresis, the antichretic creditor gets the
The right of a property owner to everything which is produced fruits, although of course, said fruits should be applied first, to
thereby or which is incorporated or attached thereto. the interest, if any is owing, and then to the principal amount of
the loan (see : Art. 2132).
To the owner of the principal belongs the accessory


DISCRETA (Produced) CONTINUA (Incorporated)
A. Spontane Those Rents INDTL NATURA Adjun Mi Spe GEN. RULE :
ous produced of L c x c
products by lands of buildin Buildi Alluvium Engr Confusion Art. 445. Whatever is built, planted or sown on the land of another and
of the any kind gs; ng Avulsion aftm (liquid); the
soil; thru Price Planti Change ent; Commixti improvements or repairs made thereon, belong to the owner
B. The cultivation of ng of attac on of the
young or labor leases Sowin course h- (solids) land.
and ; g of rivers ment
other Amou formatio ; NOTE : This article deals with accession continua more specifically
products nt of n of weav accession
of perpet islands ing industrial BUILDING, PLANTING, SOWING.
animals ual or painti
life ng;
annuit writin BASIC PRINCIPLES (accession continua/accession industrial)
ies. g

To the owner of the principal (land for example) must belong

REMINDER : also the accessions in accordance with the principle that
the accessory follows the principal.;

Instances when the owner of Land does not own the fruits: The union or incorporation must, with certain exception, be
effected in such a manner that to separate the principal
possessor in good faith of the land. (He owns the fruits already from the accessory, would result in substantial injury to
received (see : Art 544, par 1); either;

Usufructuary (see Art 566) He who is in good faith may be held liable but he should not
be penalized;
Lessee gets the fruits of the land (Of course, the owner gets the
civil fruits in the form of rentals); see Art. 1654; He who is in bad faith may be penalized;

Under Art. 447. the landowner himself (as distinguished
from Art. 448) makes the PLANTINGS, CONSTRUCTIONS
Art. 447. The owner of the land who makes thereon personally or OR WORKS on his land, BUT with the materials of
thru another, plantings, constructions or works with the another person.
materials of another shall pay their value; and if he acted in
bad faith, he shall also be obliged to the reparation of In such a situation, a NEW THING is produced (i.e.
damages. The owner of the materials shall have the right to something that is built or constructed on a land by the
remove them only incase he can do so without injury to the landowner with the materials of another), but does not
work constructed, or without the plantings, constructions or result in co-ownership. The owner therefore of the
works being destroyed. However, if the landowner acted in materials does not become part of the new thing. He is
bad faith, the owner of the materials may remove them in only entitled to recover their value.
event, with a right to be indemnified for damages. In short, the law gives the LANDOWNER, who acted in
good faith, the right to APPROPRIATE the new thing
provided that he INDEMNIFIES the owner of the
LANDOWNER materials.
Good Faith Bad Faith
1. Right to appropriate the 1. Liable to pay the value of the
materials but he must pay its materials plus damages; QUESTION : What if the landowner offers to dismantle the new thing
value; or return the materials 2. Owner of the materials may and
provided they are not remove them whether there is return the materials thereof to its owner?
transformed at the expense of injury or none, plus damages.
the landowner Answer : Strictly speaking, the law does not grant this option.
2. The owner of the materials What the
may remove them provided law provides is the right (of the landowner) to pay
that there is no injury to the for the
work constructed value of the materials. However, when the materials
can be
removed without causing injury thereof (i.e. statues,
Note : There is no provision of law which applies to a situation where ornaments or other of like nature), or when the
the landowner is in good faith while the owner of the material is in bad materials had
faith. However, it would seem that the landowner would not only be not been transformed, the landowner may return
exempted from reimbursement, but would also be entitled to them at his
consequential damages (as when for instance, the materials are of expense to the owner of the materials.
inferior quality). Moreover, the owner of the materials would lose all
rights to them , such as the right of removal, regardless of whether QUESTION : What if the new thing is dismantled, is the right of the
substantial injury would be caused. owner of
the materials revived?
Answer : It would seem that the law attributes ownership to
landowner by giving them the option to pay for their Note : This article applies only if the builder, planter or sower
value, is in good faith. (See also Arts. 454 and 447.)
hence, the right of the owner of the materials is not
However, the better rule should be that as long as RULES TO REMEMBER :
there is no
injury to the work constructed or to the planting, the
may be recovered by the owner thereof.
He has two options : (it is the landowner who has the option not
REMINDER : the builder, planter or sower)

In case of alienation by the landowner, the owner of the To appropriate for himself anything that has been built,
materials may go against the new owner, because he is planted or sown upon the proper payment of indemnity;
the one benefited by the accession (Pacific Farms vs (RIGHT OF APPROPRIATION) CF Ignao vs IAC 1-18-91
Esguerra 30 SCRA 684)
Note : Ownership over the thing built, sown or planted does
not pass to the landowner till after payment therefore has been
Bad Faith; Good Faith, meaning of (Cf. Arts. 453 and given. In the meantime, the builder, planter or sower (who is in
526). The builder, planter or sower is in bad faith if he good faith) has the right of retention, see : Martinez vs
makes use of the land or materials which he knows Baganus, 28 Phil 500);
belong to another.
To compel the builder to buy the land unless the value of
the land be considerably more than the value of what
Art. 448. The owner of the land on which anything has been built, has been built, planted or sown; (RIGHT TO
sown or COMPULSORY SELLING). In this situation, there is no
planted in good faith, shall have the right to appropriate as right of retention because the planter, builder or sower is
his own the works, sowing or planting, after payment of the the one required to pay. (see : Bernardo vs Bataclan 66
indemnity provided for in Article 546 and 548 or to oblige Phil 598)
the one who built or planted to pay the price of the land,
and one who sowed, the proper rent. However, the builder Generally, the landowner has no RIGHT OF REMOVAL,
or planter cannot be obliged to buy the land if its value is except after having selected a compulsory sale, the
considerable more that the of the building or trees. In such builder, planter or sower fails to pay for the land. (see :
case, he shall pay reasonable rent if the owner of the land Ignacio vs Hilario 76 Phil 605)
does not chose to appropriate the building or trees after
indemnity. The parties shall agree upon the terms of the Note: Once a choice is made by the landowner, it is generally
lease and in case of disagreement, the court shall fix the irrevocable. Thus, if the landowner has elected to get the
terms thereof. building, but is finally unable to pay for the indemnity or value
of the building, she cannot afterwards elect to sell the land. In 1993, Nuguid filed a motion for the delivery of possession of
(see : Tayag vs Yuseco, 97 Phil 712) the lot and apartment, opting to pay Pecson the value of the building
at P53,000.00, considering that he is a builder in good faith, citing Art.
546 of the Civil Code. However, Nuguid contented that considering
b. IF THE BUILDER, PLANTER IS IN BAD FAITH (Landowner in that the ownership of the lot is already uncontested, the decision
good faith) : (See : Arts : 449; 450 and 451) having become final and executory, the rents of the apartment
buildings should have been properly paid to him by the tenants instead
of Pecson. Consequently, the rents collected by Pecson amounting to
He loses what is built, planted or sown without more than P53,000.00 should be applied to offset the value of the
right to indemnity (except necessary expenses apartment building. The motion was granted.
for the preservation of the land, see : Art 452;
The parties agree that Pecson was a builder in good faith of the
He may be required to demolish or remove what apartment building on the theory that he constructed it at the time
is built or planted or sown; when he was still the owner of the lot.

The builder may be compelled to pay the price of The issue here, hinges on the applicability of Art. 448 in relation
the land (whether or not the value of the land is to Art. 546. How much should Pecson be indemnified?
considerable higher than the value of the house)
and the sower proper rent; Was the court correct in ordering Pecson to pay monthly rentals
equal to the aggregate rentals paid by the lessees of the apartment
He is liable to pay damages. buildings?

HELD : By its clear language, Article 448 refers to a land

PECSON VS COURT OF APPEALS whose ownership is claimed by two or more parties, one of whom has
244 SCRA 407 built some works, one sown or planted something. The building,
planting or sowing may have been made in good faith or in bad faith.
Art. 448 does not apply to a case where the owner of the land is the
FACTS : Petitioner Pecson was the owner of a commercial lot builder, sower or planter who then later loses ownership of the land by
located in Kamias St., Quezon City, on which he built a 4-door, 2-storey sale or donation. Where the true owner himself is the builder of works
apartment building, in 1965 at a cost of P53,000.00. For his failure to on his own land, the issue of good faith or bad fiath is entirely
pay realty taxes, the lot was sold at public auction to one Nepomuceno irrelevant. While Art. 448 is not pertinent to the case at bar,
and who in turn sold it to one Nuguid. nevertheless, the provision therein with respect to indemnity may be
applied by analogy considering that the primary intent of Art. 448 is to
Pecson challenged the validity of the auction sale, contending avoid a state of forced co-ownership.
the it did not include the sale of the apartment building. The court
ruled that there was no basis for the inclusion of the apartment The objective of Art. 546 of the Civil Code is to administer
building in the auction sale because what was sold was merely the lot justice between the parties involved in such a way as neither one nor
for plaintiffs failure to pay taxes due thereon. The Court of Appeals the other may enrich himself of that which does not belong to him. It
affirmed the findings of the lower court. is therefore the current market value of the improvement which should
be made the basis of reimbursement. A contrary ruling would unjustly
enrich the private respondents who would otherwise be allowed to
acquire a highly valued income-yielding four-unit apartment building Accretion is the process whereby soil is deposited; alluvium is
for a measly amount. the soil deposited on river banks.

The trial court also erred in ordering the petitioner to pay Essential requisites of alluvium:
monthly rentals equal to the aggregate rentals paid by the lessees of
the apartment building. Since, the private respondents have opted to 1. The deposit should be gradual and imperceptible as a process
appropriate the apartment building , the petitioner is thus entitled to (natural);
the possession and enjoyment of the apartment building, until he is 2. Current must be that of a river; does not apple to accretion by man-
paid the proper indemnity, as well as of the portion of the lot where the made means (see : Republic vs CA 132 SCRA 154);
building was constructed. This is so, because the right to retain the 3. Current must be that of a rive (if lake, the deposit may not be
improvements while the corresponding indemnity is not paid implies called alluvium but the principle is the same, see : Art. 84 Spanish
the tenancy or possession in fact of the land which it is built, planted or Law on Waters);
sown. The petitioner not having been so paid, he was entitled to retain 4. The river must continue to exist (otherwise, if the river disappears,
ownership of the building, and, necessarily, the income therefrom. [Cf : Art. 58 PD 1067, in re : Art. 461 NCC, shall apply);
Mendoza vs de Guzman, 54 SCRA 164] 5. The increase must be comparatively little;


The riparian owner may not necessarily make an express act of

Art. 457. To the owners of lands adjoining the banks of rivers belong possession, it being that the accretion is automatic, the
the moment the soil deposit appears; (See Agne vs Director 181
accretion which they gradually receive from the effects of the SCRA 793)
of the waters. (See Republic vs CA, 132 SCRA 514) On the other hand, an alluvial deposit does not automatically
become registered land simply because the lot which receives it
NOTE : This article applies also to creeks, streams, lakes is covered by a Torrens Title. Although the owner of the land on
(although which the alluvial deposit is made becomes automatically the
the soil deposited may not be called alluvium.) owner of the alluvial deposit, the law not requiring any act of
possession on his part from the moment the deposit becomes
Forms of accession natural: Alluvium; avulsion; change of course of manifest. Still ownership of a piece of land is one thing and
rivers; registration under the Torrens System is another. In order that
formation of islands. the alluvial deposit may be entitled to the protection of
imprescriptibility, the same must be placed under the operation
Alluvium is the soil deposited or added to (accretion) the lands of the Land Registration Law. An unregistered alluvial property
adjoining the banks of rivers and gradually received as an effect of the is therefore subject to acquisition through prescription by third
current of the waters. By law, the accretion is owned by the owner of person. (see : Grande vs CA, 6-30-62).
the estate fronting the river bank (riparian owner).
owners of land continually exposed to the destructive force of water
FERRER VS. BAUTISTA and subjected to various easements.
231 SCRA 257
The Director of Lands has no authority to grant a free patent
over the land that has passed to private ownership and which has
FACTS: Under controversy is a strip of land south of lot 1980 of thereby ceased to be public land. Any title thus issued or conveyed by
the Cadastral survey of Aringay, La Union. Petitioner claims its him would be null and void. Private respondents, therefore, acquired no
ownership by virtue of accretion, she being the owner of lot 1980 right or title over the disputed land by virtue of the free patent since at
covered by TCT No. T-3280, which is immediately north of the lot in the time it was issued in 1966, it was already private property and not
question. part of the disposable land of the public domain.

On the other hand, private respondents equally assert

ownership over the property on account of long occupation and by
virtue of Certificate of Title No. P-168, in the name of respondent MENESES vs. CA
Magdalena Domondon, pursuant to free patent No. 309504 issued on 246 SCRA 162
Jan. 24, 1 966.
On March 23, 1976, petitioner Gloria Ferrer filed a complaint
with the Branch III of the then CFI of La Union to Quiet Title of Real On March 7, 1977, Pablito Meneses was issued Free Patent and
Property against herein respondents Mariano Balanag and Magdalena OCT covering lot 1585 with an area of 417 square meters, and for lot
Domondon. 190 with an area of 515 square meters. Both lots are located in Los
Baos, Laguna.
Respondent judge dismissed the case on the ground that it is a
collateral attack on the Free Patent Decree No. 309504 and OCT No.P- On the other hand, Quisumbing family traces ownership of the
168. land as far back as 1919 when their matriarch, Ciriaca Arguelles Vda.
de Quisumbing was issued OCT No. 989 covering a lot with an area of
ISSUE : What is the nature of an alluvion and how is it 859 square meters located in Los Baos, Laguna with the Laguna de
acquired? Bay as its Northwestern boundary. The same parcel of land was
registered on August 14, 1973 under OCT No. T-33393 in the names of
HELD: Article 457 of the Civil Code, under which petitioner claims Ciriacas heirs.
ownership over the disputed parcel of land, provides: Art.457. To
the the owners of land adjoining the banks of rivers belong the The Quisumbings applied for registration and confirmation of
accretion which they gradually receive from the effects of the current title over an additional area of 2, 387 square meters which had
of waters. Undoubtedly, plaintiff is the lawful owner of the gradually accrued in their property by natural action of the waters of
accretion, she being the registered owner of Lot Not. 1980 which the Laguna de Bay. The CFI confirmed Quisumbings title thereto. The
adjoins the alluvial property. Alluvion gives to the owners of land Quisumbings then filed a civil case for the nullification of the free
adjoining the banks of rivers or streams any accretion which is patents and titles issued to Pablito Meneses.
gradually received from the effects of the current of water. The
rationale for the rule is to provide some kind of compensation to ISSUE:

Whether or not the lands in question are same within two years, the land to which it had been attached acquires
accretion lands to which the Quisumbings are entitled ownership thereof.


Accretion as a mode of acquiring property under article 457 of - Torrent means a violent , rushing or turbulent stream.
the civil code requires the concurrence of these requisites: - The law does not make a distinction whether the portion
segregated is big or small.
1) that the deposition of soil or sediment be gradual and imperceptible; - If the detached portion is not attached to anothers land but
2) that it be the result of the action of the of the waters of the river (or simply is in the middle of the river, ownership still remains
sea); with the person whose land it had been detached.
3) that the land where the accretion takes place is adjacent to the
banks of rivers (or the sea coast)
QUESTION : If the cause of the damage is due to artificial means, is
The lands held to be accretion lands could only benefit the the
Quisumbings, who own the property adjacent to the lands in riparian owner entitled to compensation?
Answer : BAES vs CA. If the riparian owner is entitled to
compensation for the
AVULSION damage to or loss of his property due to natural causes,
there is all
the more reason to compensate him when the change in the
Art. 459. Whenever the current of a river, creek or torrent segregates course
from an of the river is effected through artificial means. The loss to
estate on its bank a known portion of land and transfers it to the
another petitioners of the land covered by the canal was the result of
estate, the owner of the land to which the segregated portion a
belonged retains the ownership of it, provided that he deliberate act on the part of the government when it sought
removes the to
same within two years. improve the flow of the Tripa de Gallina creek. It was
obligated to compensate the Baeses for the loss.
Avulsion - the process whereby the current of a RIVER, CREEK
or TORRENT segregates from an estate on its bank a KNOWN PORTION
of land and transfers it to another estate. QUIETING OF TITLE

Avulsion implies a violent tearing or breaking away. It may also

be refereed to as delayed accession in the sense that if the owner Art. 476. Whenever there is a cloud on title to real property or
abandons the soil involved, or fails to remove (not merely claim) the any interest therein, by reason of any instrument, record, claim,
encumbrance, or proceeding which is apparently valid or effective but
is in truth and in fact invalid, ineffective, voidable or unenforceable, FACTS : The parcel of land subject of this case is a PORTION of
and may be prejudicial to said title, an action may be brought to Lot 5679 which has an area of 12,750 square meters.The property was
remove such cloud or to quiet the title. originally sold, and the covering patent issued, to Maxima Caballero
Vda. de Cario. During the lifetime of Maxima Caballero, she entered
An action may also brought to prevent a cloud from being cast into that AGREEMENT OF PARTITION with Paciencia Sabellona, whereby
upon title to real property or any interest therein. the former bound herself and parted with one-third portion of Lot 5679
in favor of the latter. Paciencia Sabellona took possession and
Note: Please observe that when the instrument is not valid on occupation of that one-third portion of Lot 5679 adjudicated to her.
its face, the remedy does not apply. Later, she sold the three thousand square meter portion thereof to
Dalmacio Secuya. After the purchase by Dalmacio Secuya,
Requisites: predecessor-in-interest of plaintiffs of the property in litigation,
Dalmacio took physical possession of the land and cultivated the same.
When he died, his heirs inherited the property and who are the now the
existence of an instrument (deed or contract) or record or claim petitioners.
or encumbrance or proceeding;
In 1972, Selma bought a 1,000 square-meter portion of Lot
the instrument or proceeding is apparently valid or effective, 5679. Later, she bought the bigger bulk of Lot 5679, consisting of
and prejudicial to the title; 9,302 square meters. The land in question, a 3,000-square meter
portion of Lot 5679, is embraced and included within the boundary of
in truth and in fact, invalid, ineffective, voidable or the later acquisition by respondent Selma. Selma lodged a complaint
unenforceable, or extinguished; and asserted ownership over the land inherited by plaintiffs-petitioners
from Dalmacio Secuya of which they had long been in possession in
concept of owner. Such claim of Selma is a cloud on the title of
Test : Would the owner of the property in an action at law brought by plaintiffs-petitioners, hence, their complaint
the adverse party and founded upon the instrument or claim, be
required to offer evidence to defeat a recovery? If proof would be ISSUE: What is the nature of an action to quiet title? What
essential, the cloud exists; if proof is not needed, no cloud is cast. must the
plaintiff prove?
For example:
HELD : In an action to quiet title, the plaintiffs or complainants must
Almas land was sold by Roger (a forger) to B, a buyer in good demonstrate a legal or an equitable title to, or an interest in, the
faith. Almas name had been forged by Roger in the deed of sale. The subject real property. Likewise, they must show that the deed, claim,
sale on its face, is apparently valid, with Almas name indicated as the encumbrance or proceeding that purportedly casts a cloud on their title
seller. In truth, however, the sale is defective because of the forgery. is in fact invalid or inoperative despite its prima facie appearance of
Almas remedy is an action to quiet title. validity or legal efficacy.

An action may also be brought to prevent a cloud from being

SECUYA vs. VDA. DE SELMA cast upon title to real property or any interest therein.
329 SCRA 244
In the case at bar, the action must fail because petitioners FACTS. Pingol is the owner of a parcel of land. In 1969, he
failed to show the requisite title. Petitioners allege that TCT No. 5679-C- executed a deed of sale in favor of Donasco over portion of the said
120, issued in the name of private respondent Selma, is a cloud on parcel of land, on installment basis within a period of 6 years. Donasco
their title as owners and possessors of the subject property, which is a immediately took possession of the property and constructed a house
3,000 square-meter portion of Lot No. 5679-C-120 covered by the TCT. thereon and began paying the installments until in 1976, he defaulted
But the underlying question is, do petitioners have the requisite title in his payments. In 1984, he died leaving an amount of the purchase
that would enable them to avail themselves of the remedy of quieting price still unpaid. His heirs filed a complaint for specific performance
of title? to compel Pingol to accept the balance thereof and to deliver the final
deed of sale of the portion. Pingol contented that the action has
Petitioners anchor their claim of ownership on two documents: prescribed inasmuch as the complaint for specific performance should
the Agreement of Partition executed by Maxima Caballero and have been filed in 1976, and since the complaint was filed only in
Paciencia Sabellona and the Deed of Confirmation of Sale executed by 1988, or more than 10 years later, the action has prescribed. HELD.
Ramon Sabellona. However, the Court found that the agreement was Although the plaintiffs complaint was denominated as one for specific
not one of partition, because there was no property to partition and the performance, it is in effect an action to quiet title. Prescription thus
parties were not co-owners. Rather, it is a nature of a trust agreement. cannot be invoked against the private respondents for it is aphoristic
that an action to quiet title to property in ones possession is
Nature of the action: imprescriptible. The rationale for this rule has been aptly state thus :
The owner of real property who is in possession thereof may wait until
This is an action in personam because it is directed against the his possession is invaded or his title is attacked before taking steps to
defeated party or privies. It may also be considered quasi in rem vindicate his right. A person claiming title to real property, but not in
since it involves interest in a real property. possession thereof, must act affirmatively and within the time provided
by the statute. Possession is a continuing right as in the right to
Notes : defend such possession. So it has been determined that an owner of
real property in possession has a continuing menace to his title. Such
An action to quiet title instituted against a co-owner is not res menace is compared to a continuing nuisance or trespass, not barred
adjudicata as to the other co-owners if they were not made parties by statute until continued without interruption for a length of time
thereto. sufficient to affect a change of title as a matter of law. (see also :
Sapto vs Fabiano, 103 Phil 683; Bucton vs Gabar, 55 SCRA 499; Dignos
Question : Does action to quiet title prescribe? vs CA, 158 SCRA 375; Coronel vs IAC, 155 SCRA 270; Solid State vs CA,
196 SCRA 630)
Answer : It depends, if the plaintiff is in possession of the property,
the action does not prescribe. But if the plaintiff is not in possession of
the property, the action may prescribe. (see Fernandez vs CA, 189
SCRA 780, Mamadsual vs Moson, 140 SCRA 83) ROBLES VS. CA
328 SCRA 97

PINGOL VS. COURT OF APPEALS FACTS : This a case for quieting of title. Petitioners, all surnamed
226 SCRA 118 Robles, are the heirs of Silvino Robles, who likewise inherited the land
from Leon Robles. Defendants are spouses Virgilio and Ruth Santos, as
well as the Rural Bank of Cardona. It was contended that petitioners
had been in possession of the land since 1942 and it was only in tending and cultivating it for everyone, and that their half-brother
September of 1987 that they came to know of the foreclosure of the Hilario would be paying the land taxes. They were not aware that from
real-estate mortgage constituted thereon by their half-brother, Hilario 1962 until 1987, the subject property had been declared in the name
Robles, in favor of Rural Bank and the latter had already sold the same of Exequiel Ballena, the Rural Bank of Antipolo, Hilario Robles, the Rural
parcel in favor of the Santos spouses. Bank of Cardona and finally to spouses Santos. For these alleged
transfers, it is essential that the deed of conveyance purportedly
The trial court held that the real-estate mortgage executed evidencing the transfer of ownership and possession from the heirs of
allegedly by Hilario Robles in favor of defendant Cardona Rural Bank Silvino to Exequiel should have been presented as best proof of that
was not valid. Thus, it follows that the foreclosure proceedings was not transfer. No such document was presented, however.
valid also. The defendant bank did not acquire any rights arising out of
the foreclosure proceedings. Consequently, the bank could not have Thus, Hilario mortgaged the property to the Rural Bank of
transferred any right to the spouses Santos. On appeal by the Cardona in his capacity as a mere co-owner thereof. Clearly, the said
defendants, the CA reversed the ruling of the lower court. The CA held transaction did not divest them of title to the property at the time of
that petitioners no longer had any title to the subject property at the the institution of the complaint for quieting of title.
time they instituted the complaint for quieting of title.

ISSUE: Was the reversal by the CA correct? CO-OWNERSHIP

HELD: An action for quieting of title is a common law remedy for the
removal of any cloud or doubt or uncertainty on the title to the real Art. 484. There is co-ownership whenever the ownership of an
property. It is essential for the plaintiff or complainant to have a legal undivided thing
or an equitable title to or interest in the real property which is the or right belongs to different persons. In default of
subject matter of the action. Also, the deed, claim, encumbrance or contracts, or of
proceeding that is being alleged as a cloud on plaintiffs title must be special provisions, co-ownership shall be governed by the
shown to be in fact invalid or inoperative despite its prima facie provisions of
appearance of validity of legal efficacy. this title.

That there is an instrument or a document which, on its face is Note : Under this article, co-ownership may exist as to rights, and is
valid and efficacious is clear in the present case. Petitioners alleged not limited to corporeal things. (see : Samaniego vs Villajin C.A OG
that their title as co-owners and possessors of the disputed property is 3137)
clouded by the tax declaration, and subsequently the free patent
thereto granted to spouses Santos. The more important question to be Characteristics : (Co-ownership may also be referred to as Tenancy
resolved, however, is whether petitioners have appropriate title that in
will entitle them to avail themselves of the remedy of quieting of title. common)

Petitioners anchor their claim to the disputed property on their 1. plurality of subjects;
continued and open possession as co-owners thereof. They allege that 2. singularity or unity of object;
they inherited it from their father Silvino, who in turn inherited it from 3. recognition of ideal shares.
his father, Leon. They maintain that after their fathers death, they
agreed among themselves that petitioner Lucio Robles would be
Rules regarding ideal share: c. each co-owner shares proportionately in the
accretion or alluvium of the property. This is because
a. Each co-owner has full ownership of his part, and of an increase in area benefits all.
his share in the fruits and benefits (Art. 493);
LIMITATIONS on co-owners right to use the thing owned in common
b. He may alienate, assign or mortgage his ideal share. (Art. 486)
(Art. 493);
Can be used only according to the purpose for which it was
What governs co-ownership? intended;

a. Contracts; To determine the purpose for which the property is intended,

the agreement of the co-owners (express or implied)
In default thereof: should govern. In default of any agreement : a) that to
which the thing is ordinarily adapted according to its
b. special legal provisions; nature or b) the use to which it has been previously
c. the law on co-ownership. devoted. Thus, if the co-owners of a vessel agree that it
shall be used as a warehouse or storage place for grain, one
of the co-owners cannot order the grain removed and use
Sources of co-ownership: the vessel for maritime transportation. Mere tolerance on
the part of the co-owners cannot legalize the change
LAW - party walls; party ditches; intestate succession; in the use of the thing from that intended by the co-
properties acquired by a man and a woman whose owners. Prescription cannot be invoked to establish a right
marriage is void; to such different use, because mere tolerance cannot be the
CONTRACT - two persons buy a parcel of land sharing in basis of prescription.
the purchase price and agree not to divide the land for
ten years; The right to use must not prejudice the interest of the
CHANCE - commixtion, confusion, hidden treasure; co-ownership;
OCCUPATION - Punzalan vs Boon Liat; 44 Phil 320, when
a wild beast is caught by several persons; A co-owner cannot devote community property to his
WILL - when two persons are named as legatees or exclusive use to the prejudice of the co-ownership. Thus, where
devisees of an undivided thing; the co-owners have agreed to lease a building owned in common, a
co-owner cannot retain it for his use without paying the proper rent.
Rule on the shares of co-owners in the benefits and charges (Art. 485)
: The right to use must not be exercised to prevent the others
from making use thereof according to their own right.
a. the share in the benefits and charges is
proportional to the interest of each. Hence, if The right of enjoyment by each co-owner is limited by a
one co-owner owns 2/3, he shares 2/3 of the taxes; similar right of others . Hence, if the thing is a dwelling house, all
b. contrary stipulation is VOID. To do so would be to the co-owners may live therein with their respective families, to the
run against the nature of co-ownership; extent possible. But if one co-owner alone occupies the entire
house without opposition of the others, and there is no agreement
to lease it, the other co-owners cannot demand the payment of REMINDERS :
rents. They can
either exercise an equal right to live in the house, or agree to lease
it; Article 491 requires unanimity of consent, whether tacit
if they fail to do so, they must bear the consequences. It would be or express.
unjust to require the co-owner to pay rents after the other co-
owners Effect of tacit consent - although the co-owner who is deemed
by their silence have allowed him to use the property. to have tacitly consented to the alteration cannot ask for the
demolition, neither can he be held liable to answer for
Art. 491. None of the co-owners shall without the consent of the any part of the expenses incurred therein, because the
others, make alterations in the thing owned in common, even obligation to pay such expenses cannot be deemed to be the
though benefits for all would result therefrom. However, if the subject of his tacit consent.
withholding of the consent by one or more of the co-owners is clearly
prejudicial to the common interest, the courts may afford adequate Art. 494.
General Rule :
Alteration is a change :
No co-owner shall be obliged to remain in the co-
a. which is more or less permanent; ownership. Each co-owner may demand at any time the
b. which changes the use of the thing; and partition of the thing owned in common, insofar as his share is
c. which prejudices the condition of the thing or its enjoyment concerned.
by the others.
Reasons :
It is also a change (not limited to physical) of state of the thing
or the withdrawal of the use from that intended. a. To avoid conflicts in management;
b. The law discourages co-ownership;
Example: c. The disposition or enjoyment of the thing owned in
common is subject to the desire of all co-owners;
Sale; donation; or mortgage of the property.
Exceptions :
In determining alterations, it is sometimes necessary to
consider the nature of the thing itself. Thus, when a thing does
not require any modification for its enjoyment, whatever When there exists a PROHIBITION, because :
modifications or change that is made will be considered an alteration.
But when a thing in its nature requires changes, such an industry a. of the existence of an AGREEMENT between the parties
or business, in its exploitation, such modifications and
variations should be considered as falling under acts of - not more than 10 years, extendible by a new agreement
administration. after the termination of the original period; hence, no

automatic renewal, otherwise, the intention of the law and possession of the disputed property by the petitioners as
would be defeated. owners.
- If more than 10 years, void as to the excess;
- If prohibition is perpetual, valid only up to 10 years; Exception :
- If agreement is subject to a resolutory condition, the
agreement ends upon fulfillment of the condition a. When a co-owner gives notice to the other co-owners that
provided it does not exceed 10 years. he is repudiating the co-ownership and that he is claiming
ownership of the entire property;
b. the LAW does not allow partition; (conjugal partnership as a b. The requirement of continuous, open, public, adverse
general rule); possession for the period of time required must be met;
c. of the WILL of the donor or testator; (the prohibition may be
up to 20 years); Note : Acts which may be considered adverse insofar as
d. the legal NATURE of the property does not allow partition (i.e. strangers are concerned, may not be considered adverse
automobile, partition shall proceed in accordance with the rules set insofar as co-owners are concerned. In other words, it is
forth under Art. 498); harder for a co-owner to acquire properties of strangers.
Hence, mere actual possession
Note: As a general rule, prescription against a co-owner does not by one co-owner will not give rise to the inference that the
lie. possession was adverse. This is because a co-owner is after all
entitled to possession of the property. There must indeed be a
In order that the title may prescribe in favor of a co-owner, the definite repudiation and the possession is to the exclusion of
following requisites must concur: (ROBLES VS. CA 328 SCRA 97) other co-owners.

a) the co-owner has performed unequivocal acts of repudiation

amounting to an ouster of the other co-owners; Note : The period of prescription commences from the date of
b) such positive acts of repudiation have been made known to the the repudiation.
other co-owners;
c) the evidence thereof is clear and convincing. May an action for partition prescribe?

In Robles vs CA, the SC ruled that : Hilario did not have

possession of the subject property; neither did he exclude AGUILAR VS COURT OF APPEALS
petitioners from the use and enjoyment thereof, as they have 227 SCRA 472
indisputably shared in its fruits. Likewise, his act of entering into
the mortgage contract with the bank cannot be construed to be a
repudiation of the co-ownership. As an absolute owner of his FACTS: In 1969, brothers Virgilio and Senen purchased a house
undivided interest in the land, he had the right to alienate his share, as and lot where their father could live for the rest of his remaining years
he in fact did. Neither should his payment of land taxes in his name, as in a peaceful neighborhood. They signed a written memorandum
agreed upon by the co-owners, be construed as repudiation of the co- agreeing that their shares in the property are equal. It was also
ownership. The assertion that the declaration of the co-ownership was agreed that Senen could live in the house as long as he would
tantamount to repudiation was belied by the continued occupation take care of the needs of his father. In 1974, their father died.
Consequently, in 1975, Virgilio demanded from Senen to vacate
the premises so that the property could be sold to third parties respondent and his family in the house prejudiced the interest
and the proceeds thereof divided between them in accordance of petitioner as the property should have been sold and the
with their respective shares. Senen refused. In 1979, an action was proceeds divided equally between them. To this extent and from
instituted by Virgilio against Senen to compel the sale of the house then on, respondent should be held liable for monthly rentals until he
praying for the payment of monthly rentals beginning 1975. The and his family vacate. [See: Fabian vs Fabian, 22 SCRA 520; Miguel vs
court rendered judgment ordering Senen to vacate the house so that Catalino, 26 SCRA 274; Villanueva vs Florendo, 139 SCRA 329].
the same may be sold to third parties and the proceeds thereof divided
among the brothers. Moreover, the court ordered Senen to pay rental
beginning 1975 up to the date of the decision. SALVADOR vs. CA
243 SCRA 239
RULING: The judgment of the lower court was correct except
as to the effectivity of the payment of rentals by respondent. FACTS:

Article 494 of the Civil Code provides that no co-owner shall be Alipio Yabo was the owner of lot No. 6080 and 6180 situated in
obliged to remain in the co-ownership, and that each co-owner may Barrio Bulua, Cagayan de Oro City, containing an area of 1,267 and
demand at any time partition of the thing owned in common in so 3,816 sq.m respectively. Title thereto devolved upon his nine children
far as his share is concerned. Corollary to this rule, Art. 498 of the Victoriano, Procopio, Lope, Jose, Pelagia, Baseliza, Francisca, Maria, and
Code states that whenever the thing is essentially indivisible and Gaudencia, upon his death.
the co-owners cannot agree that it be allotted to one of them
who shall indemnify the others , it shall be sold and its On April 1976, Pastor Makibalo, husband of Maria, filed a
proceeds accordingly distributed. However, being a co-owner complaint for Quieting of Title alleging that he owned a total
respondent has the right to use the house and lot without paying any of 8 shares of the subject lot having purchased 7 shares and
compensation to the petitioner, as he may use the property owned in inherited the share of his wife. Except the share of Gaudencia
common so long as it is in accordance with the purpose for which he did not buy, he occupied, cultivated and possessed
which it is intended and in a manner not injurious to the interest continuously, openly, peacefully, and exclusively the two parcels of
of the other co-owners. Each co-owner of property held pro indiviso land. In December 1968, Pastor mortgaged the two parcels to the
exercises his rights over the whole property and may use and enjoy the spouses Eulogio and Remedios Salvador.
same with no other limitation than that he shall not injure the interest
of his co-owners, the reason being that until a division is made, the On October 8, 1976, the heirs Alipio Yabo a complaint for
respective share of each cannot be determined and every co-owner Partition and Quieting of Title against Makibalo and spouses Salvador.
exercises, together with his co-participants joint-ownership over the They alleged that lot 6080 and 6180 are the common property
pro indiviso property, in addition to his use and enjoyment of the same. of the heirs of Alipio Yabo, namely, the plaintiffs, defendant
In fairness, respondent should pay a rental of P 1, 200.00 per month, Enecia Cristal, Maria Yabo and Jose Yabo, whose share had been
with legal interest from the time the trial court ordered him to sold to Alberto Yabo; that after Alipios death, the spouses Pastor and
vacate, for the use and enjoyment of the other half of Maria Makibalo became the de facto administrators of the said
property appertaining to petitioner. When petitioner filed an properties, and that to their surprise, they discovered that the
action to compel the sale of the property and the trial court granted Salvador Spouses, who were strangers to the family, have
the petition and ordered the ejectment of respondent, the co- been harvesting coconuts from the lots, which act cast cloud on
ownership was deemed terminated and the right to enjoy the the plaintiffs title over the lots.
possession jointly also ceased. Thereafter, the continued stay of
ISSUE: Calasiao, Pangasinan. These parcels of land formed part of the estate
of Ramon Bauzon and his wife which, upon their death, devolved by
Whether or not the rights of Pastors co-heirs in the estate of right of succession to their children Segunda, Maria, Juan and
Maria Yabo were extinguished through prescription or laches?? Roque Bauzon in equal pro-indiviso shares. According to
petitioners, Roque Bauzon repudiated the co-ownership over the
HELD: sugarland in 1965 and adjudicated it to himself, and that in 1970 Juan
and Maria Maningding renounced and quitclaimed their shares over the
Possession of a co-owner is like that of a trustee and shall not riceland in favor of Roque Bauzon by virtue of an Affidavit of Quitclaim
be regarded as adverse to the other co-owners but in fact as beneficial and renunciation. Subsequently, Roque Bauzon transferred the riceland
to all of them. Acts which may be considered as adverse to strangers to his son Luis Bauzon and the sugarland to his daughter Eriberta
may not be considered as adverse insofar as co-owners are concerned. Bauzon.
A mere silent possession of a co-owner, his receipt of rents, fruits or
profits from the property, the erection of buildings are fences and the On July 31, 1979, Segunda Maningding died. Her heirs allegedly
planting of trees thereon, and the payment of land taxes, cannot serve discovered the transfers made by Roque Bauzon in favor of his children
as proof of exclusive ownership, if it is not borne out by clear and only in 1986. Consequently, the heirs sought the partition of the
convincing evidence that he exercised acts of possession which properties as well as the accounting of the produce but were
unequivocably constituted an ouster or deprivation of the unsuccessful.
rights of the other co-owners.
Roque Bauzon claimed that he acquired ownership over both
Thus, in order that co-owners possession may be deemed the sugarland and the riceland by donation propter nuptias from
adverse to the cestui que trust or the other co-owners, the following his parents Ramon Bauzon and Sotera Zulueta on April 26 1926
elements must concur: in consideration of his marriage to Petra Loresco. Since the death of
Ramon Bauzon in 1948, Roque had been in open, continuous,
1)that he has performed unequivocal acts of repudiation amounting an notorious, adverse and actual possession of the subject
ouster of the cetui que trust or the other co-owners; properties.
2) that such positive acts of repudiation have been made known to the
cetui que trust or the other co-owners; ISSUE:
3) and that the evidence thereof must be clear and convincing.
Whether or not the donation propter nuptias constitute
a legal basis for adverse possession?


HEIRS OF SEGUNDA MANINGDING vs. CA Even assuming that the donation propter nuptias is void for
276 SCRA 601 failure to comply with formal formalities, it could still constitute the
legal basis for adverse possession. With clear and convincing
FACTS: evidence of possession, a private document of donation may
serve as basis for a claim of ownership. In Pensader vs. Pensader
This is an action for annulment of documents, accounting and (47 PHIL 959), the Supreme Court ruled that while the verbal donation
partition of 2 parcels of land, a riceland and a sugarland, situated in under which the defendant and his predecessors-in-interest have been
in possession of the lands in question is not effective as a transfer of Whether or not private respondents have acquired ownership of
title, still it is a circumstance which may explain the adverse the properties in question by acquisitive prescription?
and exclusive character of the possession.
The donation propter nuptias was effected as early as 21 April
1926. It was only in 1986 when the heirs of Segunda Maningding NO. Private respondents have not acquired ownership of the
demanded partition of the properties and conveyance of the produce. property in question by acquisitive prescription. In a co-ownership, the
60 years have already elapsed. Even granting that Roque Bauzon act of one benefits all the other co-owners, unless the latter repudiates
possessed the properties only upon the death of his father in 1948, the co-ownership. Thus, no prescription runs in favor of a co-
more than 30 years have already passed. In either case, acquisitive owner or a co-heir against her or his co-owners or co-heirs, so
prescription has already set in favor of Roque Bauzon. long as he/she expressly or impliedly recognizes the co-
While prescription among co-owners cannot take place when
the acts of ownership exercised are vague and uncertain, such In this case, it is undisputed that prior to the action for partition,
prescription arises and produces all its effects when the acts of petitioner, in the concept of a co-owner was receiving from private
ownership do not evince any doubt as to the ouster of the rights of the respondents his share of the produce of the land in dispute. Until such
other co-owners. time, recognition of the co-ownership by private respondents was
beyond question. There is no evidence, either of their
repudiation, if any, of the co-ownership of petitioners father
TRINIDAD vs. CA Inocentes over the land. Further, the titles of these pieces of land
289 SCRA 189 were still in their fathers name. Although private respondents had
possessed these parcels openly since 1940 and had not shared with
FACTS: petitioner the produce of the land during the pendency of this case,
still, they manifested no repudiation of the co-ownership.
Patricio Trinidad and Anastacia Briones were the parents of 3
children, Inocentes, Lourdes and Felix. When Patricio died in 1940, he
was survived by his children. He left 4 parcels of land situated at Barrio
Tigayon, Kalibo, Aklan. BAILON-CASILAO vs. CA
160 SCRA 738
Petitioner, Arturo Trinidad, claimed to be the son of the
late Inocentes. On August 10, 1978, he filed an action for partition of FACTS:
the 4 parcels of land In 1970, he demanded from the defendants to
partition the land into 3 equal shares and to give him the 1/3 individual Petitioners filed a case for recovery of property and
share of his late father but the defendants refused. In their answer, damages with notice of lis pendens on March 13, 1981 against the
defendants denied that Arturo was the son of Inocentes Trinidad defendant and private respondent Celestino Afable. The parcel of land
contending that Inocentes was single when he died. involved in this case, with an area of 48, 849 square meters covered by
OCT No. 1771 issued on June 12,1931, in the names of Rosalia,
ISSUE: Gaudencio, Sabena, Bernabe, Nenita and Delia, all surnamed
Bailon, as co-owners, each with 1/6 share. Gaudencio and Nenita are

now dead, the latter being represented in this case by her children,
Luz, Emma and Nilda. 2) There are 4 basic elements of laches:

On August 23, 1948, Rosalia and Gaudencio sold a portion of a. conduct on the part of the defendant or of one under whom
said land consisting of 16,283 sq. meters to Donato Delgado. On May he claims, giving rise to the situation of which complaint is
13, 1949, Rosalia alone sold the remainder of the land consisting of made and for which the complainant seeks a remedy.
32,566 sq.meters of land to Ponciano de Lanuza. On the same date,
Lanuza sold the 2 parcels of land which the latter had earlier acquired b. Delay in asserting the complainants rights, the
from Rosalia and Gaudencio. The 2 parcels of land were further sold to complainant having had knowledge or notice of the
Celestino Afable. In is answer to the complaint filed by herein defendants conduct and having been afforded opportunity
petitioners, Afable claimed that he had acquired the land in question to institute the suit;
through prescription and contended that the petitioners were guilty of
laches. c. Lack of knowledge or notice on the part of the defendant
that the complainant would assert the right on which he
ISSUE: bases his suit.

1. Whether or not prescription can be invoked as against d. Injury or prejudice to the defendant in the event relief is
petitioners-representative of their deceased mother? accorded to the complainant, or the suit is not held to be
2. Whether or not petitioners are guilty of laches? barred.

While the 1st and last elements are present in this case, the 2 nd
1. Article 494 of the Civil Code declares that an action for partition is and 3 elements are missing. The 2nd element speaks of delay in

imprescriptible or cannot be barred by prescription. It is argued that asserting the complainants rights. However, the mere fact of delay is
as to petitioners Emma, Luz, and Nilda who are not insufficient to constitute laches. It is required that: (1) complainant
registered owners but merely represented their deceased must have had knowledge of the conduct of defendant or of one under
mother, prescription lies. Respondents bolster their argument by whom he claims; and (2) he must have been afforded the opportunity
citing the decision of the Supreme Court in Pasion v. Pasion (2 SCRA to institute the suit.
486) holding that the imprescriptibility of a Torrens title can only
be invoked by the person in whose name the title is registered It must be noted that while there was delay in asserting
and that the one who is not the registered owner of a petitioners rights, such delay was not attended with any knowledge of
parcel of land cannot invoke imprescriptibility of action to the sale or with any opportunity to bring suit. In the first place,
claim he same. The case does not apply. The ruling applies only petitioners had no notice of the sale made by their eldest sister.
against transferees other than direct issues or heirs or to complete
strangers. The rational is clear: If prescription is unavailing The 3rd element is likewise absent. There was no lack of
against the registered owner, it must be equally unavailing knowledge or notice on the part of the defendant that the
against the latters hereditary successors, because they complainants would assert their right on which they base the suit. On
merely step into the shoes of the decedent by operation of law, and the contrary, private respondent is guilty of bad faith in purchasing the
merely the continuation of the personality of their predecessor in property as he knew that the property was co-owned by 6 persons and
interest. yet, there was only 2 signatories to the deeds of sale and no special
authorization to sell was granted to the 2 sellers by the other co- What are the Degrees of Possession?
According to Sanchez Roman, there are four Degrees of Possession:

POSSESSION 1 The mere holding of a thing without the title, or the holding of a
thing in
violation of the right of the owner.
POSSESSION, meaning of :
Example: A thief possesses a thing without title and in violation
Art. 523: Possession is the holding of a thing or the enjoyment of the
of a right. right of the owner.

What is the relationship between ownership and possession? 2 Possession with juridical title, but not that of ownership.

As a general rule, possession is an element of ownership. Example: 1. Contract of lease.

However, this is not absolute, there are circumstances whereby the 2. Usufruct
owner of the thing does not possess the thing.
The possession by the tenant; by the depository; by the bailee;
Essential Requisites of Possession : (Must concur) by the lessee. All these have juridical titles but they are not the
1 Holding, maybe actual or constructive, the body of thing or the
corpus. (There is occupancy, taking or apprehension) 3 Possession with just title not sufficient to possess ownership.
(a.k.a. real possessory right.);
2 Intent to hold it, the animus or desire.
Example: A in good faith buys an automobile from B who
3 The possession must be by virtue of ones own right. Hence, delivers the
an agent who holds is not truly in possession; it is the principal who same to A, and who merely pretended to be the owner
possesses thru the agent; thereof.

4 Possession with a title of dominium. This is possession arising

Classes of possession: from ownership.

1. Possession is ones own name or possession in the name of

another; (see Art. 524) What are the concepts of possession?

2. Possession in the concept of an owner or possession in the concept

of a holder; (see Art. 525) Art. 525: The possession of things or rights may be had in one of two
concepts: either in the concept of owner, or in that of the holder
3. Possession in good faith or possession in bad faith. (See Art. 526) of the thing or right to keep or enjoy it, the ownership pertaining to
another person.
the rental amount of P100.00 per annum to Mrs. Ruperta Salma, who
a. In the concept of an owner: represented the heirs of Roberto Maglucot, petitioners predecessor-in-
interest. In December 1993, said respondents stopped paying rentals
It is the possession by the owner himself or by a person who claiming ownership over the subject lot. Petitioners thus filed the
CLAIMS to be and ACTS as the owner, whether he is in good faith complaint a quo.
or in bad faith. He possesses the thing in such a way that he makes
people believe or see that he is the owner and recognizes no title or ISSUE: Whether or not respondents have a legal title to the subject
ownership in another. lot?

b. In the concept of holder: HELD: NO. the payment of rentals by the respondents reveal that
they are mere lessees. As such, the possession of respondents over the
Here, the possessor recognizes another to be the owner. lot no. 1639-D is that of a holder and not in the concept of an
owner. One who possesses as a mere holder acknowledges in
Examples: another a superior right which he believes to be ownership,
whether his belief is right or wrong. Since the possession of
That of a tenant; respondents were found to be that of lessees of petitioners, it goes
That of the usufructuary; without saying that the latter were not in possession of Lot No. 1639-D
That of the depositary; in the concept of an owner from 1952 up to the time the present action
That of a bailee in commodatum; was instituted.

NOTE : Possessor who is merely tolerated by owner is a possessor in

329 SCRA 78 concept of holder and such possession does not hinder a valid
transfer of ownership by the owner thru its sale to another.

FACTS: Petitioners filed with the RTC a complaint for the recovery of
possession and damages alleging, inter alia, that they are the owners Jose M. T. Garcia vs. Court of Appeals, et. al.,
of lot No. 1639-D. Said lot was originally part of lot No. 1639 which was G.R. No. 113140, August 10, 1999.
covered by OCT No. 6775 issued in the names of Hermogenes
Olis, Bartolome Maglucot, Naselmo Lara and Tomas Maglucot
on August 16. 1927. Upon petition of the Tomas Maglucot, the lot was Atty. Pedro Garcia with his wifes consent sold his Bel-Air II
ordered subdivided into 6 portions among themselves and designated Village, Makati to their daughter Ma. Luisa Magpayo & her
by letters, lot No. 1639-D belongs to Roberto Maglucot. husband. The Magpayo spouses mortgaged the property to
secure a loan of P564,000.00. Atty. Garcias title was cancelled and
Sometime in 1963, Guillermo Maglucot rented a portion of lot a new one issued in the name of the Magpayos. The real estate
no. 1639-D (subject lot). Subsequently, Leopoldo and Severo, mortgage was registered and annotated at the back of the title. The
both surnamed Maglucot, rented portions of the subject lot in 1964 Magpayos failed to pay the loan and the mortgage was foreclosed
and 1969, respectively, and each paying rental therefor. Said extrajudicially, sold at public auction. PBCom, the mortgagee-creditor
respondents built houses on their corresponding leased lots. They paid
was highest bidder. The 1 yr. Redemption period expired, and title was
consolidated in favor of PBCom. In an obiter dictum, the Court, speaking thru Mr. Justice Puno,
stressed the difference between possession and ownership. Speaking
Ma. Luisas brother, Jose Ma. T. Garcia, who was in possession thru Justice Puno, it stressed that possession and ownership are
filed a suit for recovery of realty and damages, claims he inherited distinct legal concepts. Ownership exists when a thing pertaining to
property from his deceased mother. But property was not in the one person is completely subjected to his will in a manner not
inventory of properties of his mother when the intestate estate prohibited by law and consistent with the rights of others. Ownership
of Remedios T. Garcia was being settled. confers certain rights to the owner, one of which is the right to
dispose of the thing by way of sale. Atty. Pedro Garcia and his wife
The lower court held in favor of Jose Ma. Garcia. The Court of Remedios exercised their right to dispose of what they owned when
Appeals reversed the lower Court and the Supreme Court affirmed such they sold the subject property to the Magpayo spouses. On the other
reversal. The Court cited with approval the CAs ruling to wit: hand, possession is defined as the holding of a thing or the
enjoyment of a right. Possession may be had in one of two ways:
(P)laintiff-appellees assertion that ownership over the possession in the concept of an owner and possession of a holder. A
disputed property was not transmitted to his sister and her possessor in the concept of an owner himself or one who claims to be
husband-Magpayo spouses at the time of the execution of the so. On the other hand, one who possesses as a mere holder
Deed of Sale as he was still in actual and adverse possession acknowledges in another a superior right which he believes to be
thereof does not lie. ownership, whether his belief be right or wrong. The records show
that petitioner occupied the property not in the concept of an
For in his complaint, plaintiff-appellee alleged that he owner for his stay was merely tolerated by his parents. We held
entered into possession of the disputed property only upon the in Caniza v. Court of Appeals that an owners act of allowing another to
demise of his mother, from whom he alleges to have occupy his house, rent-free does not create a permanent and
inherited it but who was not the registered owner of the indefeasible right of possession in the latters favor. Consequently, it is
property, that is, on October 31, 1980 (Certificate of Death, p. of no moment that petitioner was in possession of the property at the
17, Records), by which admission he is bound. Since the time of the sale to the Magpayo spouses. It was not a hindrance to
execution of the deed of sale by Atty. Pedro V. Garcia in favor of a valid transfer of ownership. On the other hand, petitioners
the Magpayos took place earlier or on August 1, 1980, then subsequent claim of ownership as successor to his mothers share in
contrary to his claim, plaintiff-appellee was not in possession of the conjugal asset is belied by the fact that the property was not
the property at the time of the execution of said public included in the inventory of the estate submitted by his father to the
instrument. intestate court. The buttresses the ruling that indeed the property was
no longer considered owned by petitioners parents.
The Court likewise upheld the Court of Appeals holding that
That the Magpayos title, TCT No. S-108412, was issued the mortgage to PBCom by the Magpayo spouses is valid
four (4) days following the execution of the deed of real estate notwithstanding that the transfer certificate of title over the property
mortgage is of no moment, for registration under the Torrens was issued to them after the mortgage contract was entered into.
system does not vest ownership but is intended merely to Registration does not confer ownership, it is merely evidence of such
confirm and register the title which one may already have on ownership over a particular property. The deed of sale operates of a
the land (Municipality of Victorias v. Court of Appeals, 149 SCRA formal or symbolic delivery of the property sold and authorizes the
32, 44-45 [1987]) buyer to use the document as proof of ownership. All said, the
Magpayo spouses were already the owners when they mortgaged the POSSESSION IN GOOD FAITH AND POSSESSION IN BAD FAITH
property to PBCom.

Art. 526. He is deemed a possessor in good faith who is not aware

NOTE : There can be no acquisitive prescription of land if the that there exists in his title or mode of acquisition any flaw
possession is in the concept of holder. which validates it.

He is deemed a possessor in bad faith who possesses in any case

Servando Mangahas vs. Court of Appeals and contrary to the foregoing.
Spouses Simeon and Leonora Cayme, [G.R. No.
95815, March 10, 1999] Mistake upon a doubtful or difficult question of law may be the basis of
good faith.

FACTS : The Rodils sold land they have occupied

since April 1955 to the Caymes on Feb. 1, 1971 by virtue of AWARENESS of any FLAW is question of knowledge.
affidavit of relinquishment of right for P 7,000.00. The lower
court found that it was petitioner Mangahas himself who
approached the buyer and offered to sell the 15 hectares parcel If he is not aware GOOD FAITH. There is always a
and he was also the one who received the amount. The presumption that every possessor is a possessor in good faith.
buyers filed a Free Patent Application with the Bureau of Lands (see Art. 527)
which was approved, a patent and an Original Certificate of Title
was issued. In 1969 petitioner Mangahas was allowed to If he is aware BAD FAITH. This is purely personal to the
occupy the land and he developed most of the same into possessor. It may not necessarily be transmitted to the heir.
a fishpond by the Rodils for a consideration of P 7,000.00.
Respondents also allowed him to continue occupying it after the
sale in 1971 as they were very busy with their palay business. NOTE :
Petitioner did not get any share except at one time he received
1/2 "tiklis of tilapia". When asked to leave, petitioner refused. Transferee of an unregistered parcel of land for value
Action for recovery of ownership & possession. Petitioner from a
interposed the defense of acquisitive prescription. buyer and who took immediate possession thereof has
the benefit
HELD : The defendant-appellant's grantor or of good faith in his favor. Ordinary acquisitive
predecessor-in-interest (Severo Rodil) took possession of the prescription of 10
property, subject matter of the litigation, on April 1955. Since years is applicable.
the complaint in the case at bar was filed on February 25,
1985, the requirement of at least thirty years continuous
possession has not been complied with even if We were to tack Sotera Paulino Marcelo, et. al. vs. CA
Rodil's period of possession . . . " [G.R. No. 131803. April 14, 1999]

FACTS : Petitioners assert that the property sold by the repudiation has been communicated to the other party. Acts of
Sarmientos to respondent Cruz on 19 November 1960, covers possessory character executed due to license or by mere
only the riceland, which measures about 6,000 square tolerance of the owner would likewise be inadequate.
meters, and that the pasture land containing 7,856 square Possession, to constitute the foundation of a prescriptive right,
meters, has not been included. Contrary to the insistence of must be en concepto de dueno, or, to use the common law
petitioners, the Extra-judicial Settlement with Sale equivalent of the term, that possession should be adverse; if
executed on 19 March 1960 by Engracia de la Cruz (widow of not, such possessory acts, no matter how long, do not start the
Jorge Sarmiento) and her children Vicente Sarmiento, Maria running of the period of prescription;
Sarmiento and Florentino Sarmiento, pertained not only to
the Riceland but also to the pasture land. Acquisitive prescription of dominion and other real rights
may be ordinary or extraordinary. Ordinary acquisitive
Shortly after the execution of the deed of sale in his favor, prescription requires possession of things in good faith and with
respondent Cruz declare both parcels, i.e., the Riceland and just title for the time fixed by law; without good faith and just
pasture land for taxation purposes in 1960 in the Office of the title, acquisitive prescription can only be extraordinary in
Provincial Assessor and forthwith a new tax declaration was character. As regards, real or immovable property, Article
issued in his name in his name for the entire 13, 856 square- 1134 of the Civil Code provides: Ownership and other real
meter property. In turn, respondent Cruz sold, on 03 rights over immovable property are acquired by ordinary
November 1968, the 13,856 square meters of land to prescription through possession of ten years.
respondent Flores. who immediately took possession of the
property to the exclusion of all others and promptly paid the Ordinary acquisitive prescription demands, as aforesaid,
realty taxes thereon. From that time on, Flores had been in that the possession be "in good faith and with just title." The
possession of the entire area in the concept of an owner and good faith of the possessor consists in the reasonable belief
holding it in that capacity for almost fourteen (14) years before that the person from whom the thing is received has been the
petitioners initiated their complaint on 06 October 1982. owner thereof and could thereby transmit that ownership.
There is, upon the other hand, just title when the adverse
ISSUE : Did Flores acquire ownership over the land by claimant comes into possession of the property through
virtue of prescription? any of the modes recognized by law for the acquisition
of ownership or other real rights, but that the grantor is
HELD : Explaining the nature of acquisitive prescription, neither the owner nor in a position to transmit the right.
the Court, speaking thru Mr. Justice Vitug, stated:

"Acquisitive prescription is a mode of acquiring

ownership by a possessor through the requisite lapse of time. REMINDER :
In order to ripen into ownership, possession must be in the
concept of an owner, public, peaceful and uninterrupted. Thus, A partys mere refusal to believe that a defect exists of his
mere possession with a juridical title, such as, to exemplify, by a willful closing of his eyes to the possibility of the existence of
usufructuary, a trustee, a lessee, an agent for a pledgee, not a defect in his vendors title will not make him an innocent
being in the concept of an owner, cannot ripen into purchaser for value if it afterwards develop that the title was in fact
ownership by acquisitive prescription, unless the defective. Hence, if circumstances exist that require a prudent man to
juridical relation is first expressly repudiated and such
investigate, he will be in bad faith if he does not investigate. (see: Republic then instituted an action for reversion and cancellation of
Leung Lee vs. Strong, 37 Phil. 464; Republic vs. CA, 102 SCRA 331) titles.

Note : If there is no flaw, the article does not apply. ISSUE: Whether or not the spouses Rivera are innocent
purchasers for value?

REPUBLIC VS. DE GUZMAN HELD: NO. Spouses Rivera are not purchasers for value.
326 SCRA 267 They are related by consanguinity and affinity to Enrique de Guzman
and knew that de Guzman was not in possession of the land. In
FACTS: After public bidding held on March 18, 1950, the Board fact, Rio Rivera testified that his father-in-law was not in possession of
of Liquidators, awarded Lot 5249 Ts-217, a 450 square meter land he lot in question. Carmen Ty was in possession of the lot since
situated in Dadiangas, General Santos City to Eusebio Diones. 1963 and paid the real estate taxes thereon. The burden
Diones thereafter transferred his rights over the lot to De of proving the status of purchaser in good faith and for value
Guzman, evidenced by an Agreement of Transfer of Right. lies upon him who asserts that status. In discharging the burden,
From the time he purchased the lot, De Guzman did not it is not enough to invoke the ordinary presumption of good faith.
occupy it. In 1963, Lucena Ong Ante, another claimant of the lot, The rule is settled that a buyer of real property which is in
authorized Carmen Ty to occupy the land. Ong Ante paid the possession of persons other than the seller must be wary and should
corresponding real estate taxes from 1963 until 1980. Carmen Ty investigate the rights of hose in possession. Otherwise, without such
remained the occupant of the land until this time. inquiry, the buyer can hardly be regarded as buyer in good faith.

On August 12, 1967, de Guzman filed with the Board of

Liquidators and submitted supporting documents. The Director of GEMINIANO vs. CA
Lands ordered the award and issuance of a patent in favor of De 259 SCRA 344
Guzman. On September 5, 1967, the Department of Agriculture and
Natural Resources approved and issued Miscellaneous Sales Patent No. FACTS:
814 to de Guzman. The Register of Deeds, thereafter, issued OCT This is a petition for review on certiorari which originates in Civil
No.P-29712 in the name of de Guzman. Case NO. 9214 of Branch 3 of the MTCC in Dagupan City for unlawful
detainer and damages.
Sometime in 1973, de Guzman sold the lot to his married
daughter and her husband, Carolina de Guzman and Rio Rivera It appears that lot No. 3765-B-1 containing an area of 314 sq.
(spouses Rivera). On February 13, 1974, spouses Rivera and Hoechst meters was originally owned by petitioners mother, Paulina
Phils., Inc., as mortgagor and mortagagee, respectively, executed a Amado vda. de Geminiano. On a 126 sq. meters portion of that lot
real-estate mortgage involving the lot. For failure to settle their stood the petitioners unfinished bungalow, which the petitioners
obligation, the mortgagee foreclosed on the mortgage and acquired sold in November 1978 to private respondents for the sum of
the lot at the foreclosure sale. A certificate of sale was issued in P6,000, with an alleged promise to sell to the latter that portion
favor of Hoechst Phils. However, for unknown reasons, the of the lot occupied by the house. Subsequently, the petitioners
real-estate mortgage and the certificate of sale were not mother executed a contract of lease over the 126 sq. meter portion of
registered with the Register of Deeds. Thus, the transfer the lot, including the portion on which the house stood, in favor of
certificate of title remained in the name of spouses Rivera. The private respondents for P40.00 a month for a period of 7 years
commencing on November 15, 1978. The private respondents then
introduced additional improvements and registered the house in their the life of the lease. Plainly, they cannot be considered as
names. After the expiration of the lease contract on November 1985, possessors nor builders in good faith.
however, petitioners mother refused to accept the monthly rental.

It turned out that the lot in question was the subject of a suit, The following may be the basis of good faith:
which resulted in its acquisition by one Maria Lee in 1972. In
1982, Lee sold the lot to Lily Salcedo, who in turn sold it in 1984 to the 1. Error in the application of the law, in legal solutions that arise
spouses Agustin and Ester Dionisio. On February 1992, the from such application; (here, the error is not gross and therefore
Dionisio spouses executed a Deed of Quitclaim over the said property excusable.)
in favor of the petitioners. As such, the lot was registered in the latters
names. On February 1993, petitioners demanded private 2. Error in the appreciation of the legal consequences of certain
respondent to vacate the premises and pay the rentals in arrears. Upon acts;
failure of the private respondents to heed the demand, the petitioners
filed with the MTCC of Dagupan City a complaint for unlawful detainer 3. Errors in the interpretation of doubtful provisions or
and damages. doctrines; (see: Kasilag vs. Roque, 67 Phil. 217).

Presumptions that may arise from possession:
Whether the lessees, private respondents, were builders in good
faith and entitled to reimbursement of the value of the improvements,
and the house? 1. OWNERSHIP. Art. 433. One who is actually in possession of a
thing under claim of ownership is presumed to be the owner.
HELD: One who alleges that such possessor is not the true owner has the
burden of proof to prove his claim. (Disputable presumption)
It is undisputed that the private respondents came into
possession of a 126 sq. meter portion of the said lot by virtue of a 2. GOOD FAITH. Art. 527. Good faith is always presumed, and
contract of lease executed by the petitioners mother in their upon him who alleges bad faith on the part of the possessor rests
favor. The juridical relation between the petitioners mother as lessor, the burden of proof.
and the private respondents as lessees, is therefore well-established,
and carries with it a recognition of the lessors title. The private 3. CONTINUITY OF PRESUMPTION OF GOOD FAITH. Art. 529. If
respondents as lessees who had undisturbed possession for the entire we know that he acquired the thing in good faith, then it is
term under the lease, are then estopped to deny their landlords title, presumed that he continues to be a possessor in good faith up to
or to assert a better title not only in themselves, but also in some third now, until the contrary is proved.
person while they remain in possession of the leased premises and
until they surrender possession to the landlord. 4. JUST TITLE. Art. 541. A person who is believed to be the owner
This estoppel applies even though the lessor has no title at the by the community has the legal presumption that he possesses
time the relation of lessor and lessee was created, and may be it with a just title; that he has a title to support his ownership
asserted not only by the original lessor, but also by those who succeed and he cannot be obliged to show or prove the title.
in his title. Being mere lessees, the private respondents knew
that their occupation of the premises would continue only for
5. POSSESSION OF MOVALES. Art. 542. Possession of real property
presumes that of the movables therein, so long as it is not shown or 4. Proper acts and legal formalities established by law. This is the
proved that they should be excluded. legal formality which gives rise to possession.


recovers, according to law, possession unjustly lost, shall be These are certain documents that can ordinarily give rise to
deemed for all purposes which may redound to his benefit, to have possession because of legal fiction. The moment that
enjoyed it without interruption. document takes effect, automatically, the person in whose favor
that documents is executed is deemed to have acquired
7. POSSESSION DURING INTERVENING PERIOD. Art. 554 (see: possession of that property.
Art. 1138, 2). You are in actual possession of a parcel of land now.
There is proof that you were in possession of this land 10 years Example: In donation, there is no need of delivery. The
ago. But there is no proof that you were in possession during the moment the donation is in the form provided by law, the donee
intervening time. The presumption is you were in continuous is deemed to be in possession of the thing donated. Ownership
possession of the same. is automatically acquired by the donee.

Another example: Will upon the death of the decedent. If the

will is valid, automatically, the heirs mentioned in the will are
ACQUISITION OF POSSESSION deemed by fiction of law to be in possession of the hereditary
estate. Actually and in truth, the heirs are not in actual
possession but by fiction of law, the possession by the decedent
is deemed to be continued without any interruption. Art. 533.
Art. 531. Possession is acquired by the material occupation of a
thing or the exercise of a right, or by the fact that it is subject to the
action of our will, or by the proper acts and legal formalities
established for acquiring such right.

Three ways of acquiring possession: CEQUEA VS. BOLANTE

330 SCRA 216
1. Material occupation of the thing/exercise of a right.

Holding, apprehension, arrest, occupancy. Occupation is used FACTS : This petition refers to a parcel of land situated in Barangay
here in its ordinary sense which means holding of a thing which Bangad, Binangonan, Province of Rizal, having an area of 1,728 square
must be physical. (Also the exercise of a right.) meters and covered by Tax Declaration No. 26-0027. Prior to 1954, the
land was originally declared for taxation purposes in the name
2. By the action of our will; (by agreement); of Sinforoso Mendoza, father of respondent. Sinforoso died in
1930. Petitioners were the daughters of Margarito Mendoza. Margarito
Here, there is no actual physical detention or seizure of the Mendoza and Sinforoso Mendoza were brothers, now deceased.
thing but the agreement between the parties constitutes Respondent is the present occupant of the land. Earlier, on October 15,
the fact of possession.
1975, respondent and Miguel Mendoza, another brother of petitioners,
during the cadastral survey had a dispute on the ownership of the land. The petitioners, despite 32 years of farming the subject land,
did not acquire ownership by mere occupation. Unless coupled with the
ISSUE: How is possession acquired? Can tax receipts and element of hostility toward the true owner, occupation and use,
declarations be the basis of claim of ownership through however long, will not confer title by prescription or adverse
prescription? possession.

HELD: Petitioners did not lose legal possession because possession

cannot be acquired through force or violence. To all intents and
purposes, a possessor even if physically ousted is still deemed the HEIRS OF SALUD DIZON SALAMAT vs. TAMAYO
legal possessor. Indeed, anyone who can prove prior possession, 298 SCRA 313
regardless of its character, may recover such possession. However,
possession by the petitioners does not prevail over that of the FACTS:
respondent. The respondent is the preferred possessor because,
benefiting from her fathers tax declaration of the subject lot Agustin Dizon died intestate on May 15, 1942 leaving behind his
since 1926, she has been in possession thereof for a longer 5 children- Eduardo, Gaudencio, Salud, Valenta and Natividad, as
period. on the other hand, petitioners father acquired joint possession surviving heirs. Among the properties left by the decedent was a parcel
only in 1952. of land in Barrio San Nicholas, Hagonoy, Bulacan, with an area of 2,188
sq.meters covered by OCT No. 10384. Eduardo and Gaudencio sold
Ownership of an immovable property is acquired by ordinary their hereditary rights to their sister Salud Dizon Salamat. Gaudencio
prescription through possession for 10 years. Being the sole heir of her died on May 30, 1951 leaving his daughters Priscilla Rivera and Maria
father, respondent showed though her tax receipt that she had been in Jocson as heirs.
possession of the land for more than 10 years since 1932. When her
father died in 1930, she continued to reside there with her mother. Sometime in 1987, petitioners instituted an action for
compulsory partition of real properties registered in the name of
Tax receipts and declarations of ownership, when Agustin Dizon. Respondent, on the other hand, claims that her father
coupled with proof of actual possession of the property, can be donated it to her sometime in 1936 with the conformity of the other
the basis of a claim for ownership through prescription. heirs. The subject property is also declared for taxation purposes in the
Respondents possession was not disturbed until 1953 when the name of respondent.
petitioners father claimed the land. But by then, her possession,
which was in the concept of an owner public, peaceful and ISSUE:
uninterrupted had already ripened into ownership. Furthermore,
she herself after her fathers demise, declared and paid realty taxes for Whether or not respondent is entitled to possession of
the disputed land. the subject lot, assuming it was donated to her?

Tax declarations and receipts are not conclusive evidence of HELD:

ownership. At most, they constitute mere prima facie proof of
ownership or possession of the property for which taxes have been NO. Assuming that Agustin really made the donation to
paid. In the absence of actual, public and adverse possession, the respondent, albeit orally, respondent cannot still claim ownership over
declaration of the for tax purposes does not prove ownership. the property. While it is true that a void donation may be the basis of
ownership which may ripen into title by prescription, it is well settled of physical seizure of res nullius or donation of personality
that possession, to constitute the foundation of a prescriptive simultaneously delivered to them and not possession where
right, must be adverse and under a claim of title. juridical acts are imperative like donations of realty where
minors and incapacitated persons have no juridical capacity
Respondent was never in adverse and continuous possession of to
the property. It is undeniable that petitioners and respondent, being co- execute. (see also: Art. 535.)
heirs of the deceased, are co-owners of the properties left by the
latter. A co-ownership is a form of trust, with each other being a QUESTION : What are the circumstances that cannot give rise to
trustee for each other, and possession of a co-owner shall not be possession?
regarded as adverse to other co-owners but in fact as beneficial to
them. Mere actual possession by one will not give rise to the 1. Force, violence, intimidation. The law shall not consider you as
inference that the possession was adverse because a co-owner a possessor of a thing. (see: Tomas vs. CA, 185 SCRA 627)
is, after all, entitled to possession of the property.
2. Mere tolerance of the owner.

Who may acquire Possession? 3. Clandestine acts or secret possession cannot give rise to possession,
for possession must be open. Art. 537.

One who is in full possession of his civil capacity can acquire

possession of a thing or a right through any of the three ways of THE DIRECTOR, LANDS MANAGEMENT BUREAU vs. CA
acquiring possession as provided in Art. 531 (i.e. : 1. Material 324 SCRA 757
occupation of the thing; 2. By the action of our will; 3. Proper acts and
legal formalities established by law.) or may (under Art. 432):
FACTS: On May 15, 1975, the private respondent, Aquilino Cario, filed
1. acquire through his representative; with the then Branch I, Court of First Instance of Laguna, a petition
2. by his agent; for registration of Lot No. 6, a sugar land with an area of 43,614
3. by any person without any power whatsoever (negotiorum square meters, forming part of a bigger tract of land surveyed as Psu-
gestio) 108952 and situated in Barrio Sala, Cabuyao, Laguna.

Note: The possession of a person without power cannot be acquired Private respondent declared that subject land was originally
without the ratification of the person in whose name the act of owned by his mother, Teresa Lauchangco and later
possession was executed. administered by him in behalf of his five brothers and sisters,
after the death of their father in 1934.

QUESTION : May minors and incapacitated persons acquire In 1949, private respondent and his brother, Severino Cario,
possession? became co-owners of Lot No. 6 by virtue of an extra-judicial
partition of the land embraced in Plan Psu-108952, among the heirs
ANSWER : Minors and incapacitated persons may acquire possession in of Teresa Lauchangco. On July 26, 1963, through another deed of
those matters where they have capacity to act like in the extrajudicial settlement, sole ownership of Lot No. 6 was
case adjudicated to the private respondent.
his parents was of the nature and duration required by law. His
The trial court ordered the registration and confirmation of title bare allegations without more, do not amount to preponderant
to one parcel of land applied for by private respondent. From this evidence that would shift the burden of proof to the oppositor.
decision, petitioner (as oppositor) went to the Court of Appeals, which,
on November 11, 1993, affirmed the decision appealed from. Hence,

ISSUE: Whether or not proof of open, continuous possession required. Art. 539.

HELD: Under the Land Registration Act, he who alleges in his petition, The right to:
ownership in fee simple, must present muniments of title since the
Spanish times, such as a titulo real or royal grant, a concession a. be respected in his possession;
especial or special grant, a composicion con el estado or adjustment b. be protected or restored to said possession by legal means in case
title, or a titulo de compra or title through purchase; and informacion of disturbance of another;
possessoria or possessory information title, which would become a
titulo gratuito or a gratuitous title. In the case under consideration, Reasons for the rule:
the private respondents has not produced a single muniment of title to
substantiate his claim of ownership. a. to prevent a positive attempt against public order;
b. to avoid disturbances in the community;
In order that a petition for registration of land may prosper, the c. to prevent deprivation of property without due process of law;
applicant must show that he or his predecessor-in-interest has d. to avoid taking into his own hands the administration of justice.
been in open, continuous, exclusive, and adverse possession
and occupation of the land sought for registration, for at least Remedies:
thirty (30) years immediately preceding the filing of the
petition for confirmation of title. 1. Action for forcible entry the unlawful deprivation of
possession by means of force, intimidation, stealth, threat or strategy.
In this case, private respondent has been in possession Here, the dispossession arises from a situation or condition under
of the land for only 26 years as of 1975 when he filed the petition which a person can wrongfully enter upon a real property and exclude
beginning from 1949 when the same was adjudicated to him by virtue another, who has had possession, therefrom.
of extrajudicial settlement and partition. Other than his unilateral
assertion, private respondent has not introduced sufficient evidence to 2. Unlawful detainer action -
substantiate his allegation that his late mother possessed the land in
question even prior to 1911. 3. Accion publiciana where the cause of action arose more
than one year prior to the filing of the complaint to recover possession
The phrase "adverse, continuous, open, public, peaceful and in of real property, and therefore the action for forcible entry and detainer
concept of owner", by which characteristics private respondent can no longer be instituted. The issue here is who has the better right
describes his possession and that of his parents, are mere conclusions of possession?
of law requiring evidentiary support and substantiation. The burden of
proof is on the private respondent, as applicant, to prove by clear,
positive and convincing evidence that the alleged possession of
MILLENA vs. CA Gregorio Listana to Gaudencio Jacob to petitioner Alejandro Millena on
324 SCRA 126 September 30, 1986. Millena was then issued TCT covering the whole
lot 1874. Felisa filed a complaint against Millena for annulment of title
FACTS: This case involves a 3,934 square meter parcel of land in with preliminary injunction an damages. The RTC rendered a decision
Balinad, Daraga, Albay. It was originally part of Lot 1874, a 14,284 ordering Millena to reconvey by proper document the portion of 3, 934
square-meter land that was subject of the cadastral proceeding during square meter from lot 1874 to Felisa.
the 1920s before the CFI of Albay. Among the claimants of the
cadastral case were Gregorio Listana and her sister-in-law Potenciana ISSUE: Can prescription be invoked in an action for
Maramba, together with her 7 children. reconveyance when the plaintiff is in possession of the land to be
The claimants reached a compromise agreement to divide the
lot among themselves - of the lot went to Gregoria Listana while the HELD: NO, prescription cannot be invoked in an action for
remaining portion, to Potenciana Maramba and her 7 children. Thus, reconveyance when the plaintiff is in possession of the land to be
the northen portion of Lot 1874 with an area of approximately 3,934 reconveyed . Article 523 of the Civil Code states the possession is the
square meters was awarded to Gregoria Listana. holding of a thing or the enjoyment of a right. In order to possess, one
must first have control of the thing and, second, a deliberate intention
The share of Listana was sold to Gaudencio Jacob in 1926. to possess it. These are the elements of possession.
Thereafter, Jacob entered the portion of Lot 1874 that was sold to him.
Upon learning of Jacobs entering the lot, Maramba filed an ejectment
suit against Jacob but it was dismissed. (presumption of ownership)

After the dismissal of he case, Jacob continued with his

possession of the portion of lot 1874. His continuous, actual Art. 541 a possessor in the concept of an owner has in his
and peaceful possession lasted for almost 40 years until April 4, favor the legal presumption that he possesses with a just title
1966 when he and his children executed an extrajudicial and he cannot be obliged to show or prove it.
settlement of the estate of his deceased wife. The settlement
adjudicated to respondent Felisa Jacob, daughter of Gaudencio Jacob, Note: the term just little refers to true and valid title a title
the 3,934 square meter portion of lot 1874. Thereafter, Felisa had the which by itself is sufficient to transfer ownership without the necessity
land annually declared as her property and paid the corresponding real of letting the period elapse. (see: Diolente vs. Biarnessa, 7 Philippines
property taxes. 232)

However, in 1981, Florencio Listana, son of Potenciana Example: B brought a car from S, the owner thereof. Then S
Maramba, acquired from the Bureau of Lands in Legazpi City Free delivered the car to B. B now has a valid and true title over the car.
Patent Certificate covering the entire 14,284 square meter Thus, is B possesses and drives the car around as an owner, other
area of lot 1874 which included the portion adjudicated to people cannot compel him to prove ownership thereof.
Felisa Jacob in 1966.
Note: For purposes of prescription, just title means colorable
Felisa immediately filed a protest before the Bureau of Lands title that title where, although there was a mode of transferring
but was left unresolved until the death of Florencio Listana. The heirs ownership, still something is wrong, because the grantor is not the
of Florencio then sold the entire lot 1874 including the portion sold by owner of the thing.
Example: In the above example, if it turn out that S is not the Requisites for title:
owner of the car and somebody else was its owner, B would not be
considered as the owner thereof because he did not acquire it from 1. That the possession is in good faith;
the owner of the car, irrespective whether or not he is in good faith. 2. That the owner has voluntarily parted with the possession of the
However, for purposes of prescription, his possession is just considered thing;
as just title of the period required by law depending on whether he is 3. That the possession is in the concept of an owner.]
in good faith or not. Of in good faith 4 years ( personal property); in
bad faith 8 years. Note: Under this situation, if the (real) owner gets the thing, he must
Reasons for the presumption:
Exceptions to the rule: [Note: Here, there is NO REIMBURSEMENT.]
1. a possessor is always presumed to be in good faith;
2. because of the inconvenience of carrying proofs of 1. When the owner has lost the thing;
ownership 2. When the owner has been unlawfully deprived of the thing;
Exception to the exception: (this is also equivalent to title)
Requisites in order that the principle Possession is presumed [Note: Here, the owner of the thing shall REIMBURSE the price paid.]
ownership to
- When the possessor had acquired the thing in good faith at a public
1. One must be in possession, actual or constructive; sale (public auction sale).
2. the possession must be in the concept of an owner, not mere
holder; (see: Art. 540) Instances where there could be NO RECOVERY even if owner offers

RULE ON IRREIVINDICABILITY 1. if possessor acquired the thing in good faith by purchase from a
MERCHANT STORE or in FAIRS or in MARKETS, in accordance with
the code of COMMERCE of special laws (see Art. 1505, NCC and Art 85
Art. 559. The possession of movable property acquired in good faith is of the Code of Commerce);
equivalent to title. Nevertheless, one who has lost any movable or has been
unlawfully deprived thereof may recover it from the person in possession of 2. if owner is by his own conduct precluded from denying the sellers
the same. If the possessor of a movable lost or of which he owner has been authority to sell (Estoppel); see: Art. 1505, NCC;
unlawfully deprived, has acquired in good faith at a public sale, the owner
cannot obtain its return without reimbursing the price paid therefore. 3. holders in due course; Art. 1518, NCC;

4. finders of lost article after lapse of six (6) months; Art. 719, NCC;
Acquired in good faith here means the possessor is of the belief that
the person from whom he received the thing was its owner and could 5. acquisitive prescription; Art. 1132, NCC (good faith 4 years; bad
transfer valid title thereto. faith 8 years).
may stipulate that ownership in the thing shall not pass to the
purchaser until he has fully paid the price.
It is clear from the above provisions, particularly Art. 1478 that
ownership in the thing sold shall not pass to the buyer until full
payment of the purchase price only if there is a stipulation to that
EDCA PUBLISHING vs SANTOS effect. Otherwise, the rule is that such ownership shall pass from the
184 SCRA 614 vendor to the vendee upon the actual or constructive delivery of the
thing sold even if the purchase price has not yet been paid. Non-
FACTS: On October 5, 1981, a person identifying himself as Prof. Jose payment creates a right to demand payment or to rescind the contract,
Cruz of De la Salle College placed an order via telephone for 406 pcs or to criminal prosecution in the case of bouncing checks. But absent
of books with EDCA Publishing payable on delivery (COD). EDCA the stipulation above noted, delivery of the thing sold will effectively
prepared the corresponding invoice and delivered the books as transfer ownership to the buyer who can in turn transfer it to another.
ordered, for which Cruz issued a personal check covering the purchase
price of P8,995.65. On October 7, 1981, Cruz sold 120 pcs of the In Tagactac vs. Jimenez, the plaintiff sold the car to Feist, who
books to Leonor Santos who, after verifying the sellers sold it to Sanchez, who sold it to Jimenez, when the payment check
ownership from the invoice Cruz showed her, paid him issued to Tagactac by Feist was dishonored, the plaintiff sued to
P1,700.00. recover the vehicle from Jimenez on the ground that she had
been unlawfully deprived of it by reason of Feists deception.
Meanwhile, EDCA having became suspicious over a second order In ruling for Jimenez, the Court of Appeals held:
placed by Cruz even before clearing of his first check, made inquiries
with Della Sale College where he had claimed to be dean and was The point of inquiry is whether
informed that there was no such person in its employ. Further plaintiff-appellant Trinidad C. Tagactac has been
verification revealed that Cruz had no more account or deposit with the unlawfully deprived of her car. At first blush, it
Philippine Amanah Bank, against which he had drawn the payment would seem that she was unlawfully
check. EDCA then went to the police, which set a trap and arrested deprived thereof, considering that she was
Cruz on October 7, 1981. On the night of the same date, EDCA sought induced to part with it by reason of the
the assistance of the police which forced their way into the store of chicanery practiced on her by Feist.
Santos and threatened her with prosecution for buying stolen property. Certainly, swindling, like robbery, is an illegal
They seized the 120 books without warrant, loading them in a van method of deprivation of property. In a manner
belonging to EDCA, and thereafter, turned them over to EDCA. Santos of speaking, plaintiff-appellant was illegally
sued for the recovery of the books. EDCA contended that it can deprived of her car, for the way by which Feist
recover the books from Santos considering that EDCA was unlawfully induced her to part with it is illegal and
deprived thereof since the check issued by the impostor was punishable by law. But does this unlawful
dishonored thus, nullifying the contract of sale between it and the deprivation come within the scope of Art.
impostor. 559 of the New Civil Code?

HELD: Art. 1477 of the Civil code provides that the ownership of The fraud and deceit practiced by
the thing sold shall be transferred to the vendee upon the actual or Feist earmarks this sale as a voidable
constructive delivery thereof. Art. 1478 also provides that the parties contract (Art 1390 NCC). Being a voidable
contract, it is susceptible of either ratification or bought by him in good faith without even the right to reimbursement of
annulment. If the contract is ratified, the action the amount he had paid for it.
to annul it is extinguished (Art 1392, NCC) and
the contract is cleansed from all its defects (Art AZNAR vs. YAPDIANGCO
1396, NCC); if the contract is annulled, the 13 SCRA 486
contracting parties are restored to their
respective situations before the contract and FACTS : Santos agreed to sell his car to Marella for P14,700.00,
mutual restitution follows as a consequence (Art the price to be paid after the car is registered in the name of Marella.
1398, NCC). After the execution of the Deed of Sale, Santos together Marella
proceeded to the Motor Vehicles Office where the registration of the
However, as long as no action is taken car in Marellas name was effected. When Santos asked for payment,
by the party entitled, either that of annulment or Marella told him that he was short of P2,000.00 and informed him that
of ratification, the contract of sale remains valid he would get from his sister. Together they rode in the car to the
and binding. When plaintiff-appellant Tagactac supposed residence of his sister. Upon entering the house, Marella told
delivered the car to Feist by virtue of said Santos to wait in the sala while he asked his sister for the money. In
voidable contract of sale, the title to the car the meanwhile, on the pretext that Marella had to show his sister of the
passed to Feist. Of course, the title that Feist registration papers of the car, Santos gave them to Marella, who
acquired was defective and voidable. thereupon entered the supposed room of his sister, ostensibly to show
Nevertheless, at the time he sold the car to Felix her the papers. That was the last time Santos saw Marella and his car.
avoided and he therefore conferred good title on In the meantime Marella succeeded in selling the car to Aznar who
the latter; provided he bought the car in good bought the same in good faith for P15,000.00. When Aznar was trying
faith, for value and without notice of the defect to register the car at the Motor Vehicles Office, the same was seized
in Feist title (Art 1506, NCC) from him by the Philippine Constabulary as a consequence of the
report made to them by Santos. The lower court decide in favor of
The above rulings are sound doctrine and reflect our own Santos applying the provisions of Art 559 and concluded that he was
interpretation of Art. 559 as applied to the case before us. Actual unlawfully deprived of his property. On appeal, Aznar contended that
delivery of the books having been made, Cruz acquired ownership over Art. 1506 of the Civil Code and not Art 559 is applicable. Art 1506
the books which he could then validly transfer to the private provides:
respondents. The fact that he had not yet paid for them to EDCA
was a matter between him and EDCA and did not impair the Art. 1506. Where the seller of goods has
title acquired by the private respondents to the books. a voidable title thereto, but his title has not been
voided at the time of the sale, the buyer acquired
One may well imagine the adverse consequences if the phrase a good title to the goods, provided he buys them
unlawfully deprived were to be interpreted in the manner suggested in good faith, for value, and without notice of the
by the petitioner. A person relying on the sellers title who buys a sellers defect or title.
movable property from him would have to surrender it to another
person claiming to be the original owner who had not yet been paid the HELD: The contention is clearly unmeritorious. Under the
purchase price therefor. The buyer in the second sale would be left aforequoted provision, it is essential that the seller should have a
holding the bag, so to speak and would be compelled to return the thing voidable title at least. It is very inapplicable where, as in this case, the
seller had not title at all.
Marella did not have any title to the property under
litigation because the same was never delivered to him. He FULL OWNERSHIP = Naked Ownership + Usufruct
sought ownership or acquisition of it by virtue of the contract. Marella
could have acquired ownership or title to the subject matter thereof
only by the delivery or tradition of the car to him. The car in question Characteristics:
was never delivered to the vendee by the vendor as to complete or
consummate the transfer of ownership by virtue of the contract. It 1. Real right;
should be recalled that while there was indeed a contract of sale 2. Temporary in nature;
between Santos and Marella, the latter as the vendee, took possession 3. Purpose is to enjoy the benefits;
of the subject matter thereof by stealing the same while it was in the 4. Obligation to conserve and preserve;
custody of the formers son.
1 3 Essential (Usufruct cannot exist without these:
See: Cases 4 Natural (Ordinarily present but may be eliminated by agreement).
Accidental (may or may not be present depending upon the
1. Del Rosario vs. Lucena, 8 Phil. 535 stipulation
2. Varela vs Finnick, 9 Phil 482 of the parties)
3. Arenas vs Raymundo, 19 Phil 46
4. US vs. Sotelo, 28 Phil. 147 Usufruct, how created:

a. by law; (see Art. 225/226 of the Family Code,

USUFRUCT IN GENERAL in re: Art. 321 of the Civil Code.)

Art. 562, Usufruct gives a right to enjoy the property of
another with the obligation of preserving its forms and substance, The property of an emancipated child is owned
unless the title constituting it or the law otherwise provides. exclusively by the child and shall be devoted solely for
his support and education. As to the fruits or income of
CONCEPT: the property, the rights of the parents over the same
shall be limited only to the childs support and collective
Usufruct the right to enjoy the property of another, with the daily needs of the family.
obligation of preserving its form and substance unless the title
constituting it or the law provides otherwise. b. by contract or agreement;
c. by last will and testament.
Rights of Full Owner = DISPOSE + USE +
FRUITS Rules governing usufruct:
------------------ ------------------------
a. Agreement; (or the title giving the usufruct)
b. Civil Code.

RIGHTS OF THE USUFRUCTUARY a. If the usufruct lasts for the period stipulated, all the profits during
the said period will go to B.

FIRST. The usufructuary shall be entitled to all the natural, b. Suppose however, B died at the end of three (3) years, and the
industrial and civil fruits of the property in usufruct. With respect to following
hidden treasure which may be found on the land or tenement, the were the profits from the building:
shall be considered a stranger. (See : Art. 566)
Yr. 1 P10,000.00
Rules: Yr. 2 - P20,000.00
Yr. 3 P30,000.00
1. Pending natural or industrial fruits: Yr. 4 P20,000.00
Yr. 5 P40,000.00
a. growing at the time the usufruct begins belong to the usufructuary; -----------------
Here, the usufructuary has no obligation to refund for the expenses but
without prejudice to the right of third persons. (Thus, if the fruits had Ratio is 3:2, thus
been planted by a possessor in good faith, the pending crop expenses
and charges shall be pro-rated between said possessor and the 3(P120,000.00)/5 = P72,000.00 share of B;
usufructuary) see : Art. 545, NCC; 2(P120,000.00)/5 = P48,000.00 share of A.

b. those growing at the time the usufruct terminates, belong to the SECOND. The usufructuary has the right to the enjoyment of:
owner. (see: Art. 567, NCC) a. accessions (whether artificial or natural);
b. servitudes and easements;
Here, the naked owner is obligated to reimburse the expenses c. all benefits inherent in property (i.e.: the right to hunt and fish
incurred for therein, the right to construct rain water receptacles) see: Art. 571,
the ordinary cultivation and seeds and other similar expenses from the NCC;
of the fruits. (Hence, the excess of expenses over the proceeds THIRD. The usufructuary, in addition to the usufruct (as a right) may :
need not be (see: Art. 572)
a. enjoy the thing itself or thru another;
2. CIVIL Fruits: (Rents, pensions, benefits, etc.) see: Art. 570, NCC.
b. lease the thing to another (for a period not longer than that of the
Rule: they shall be deemed to accrue proportionately to the usufruct) even without the naked owners consent;
naked owner and usufructuary for the time the usufruct lasts.
c. alienate, sell, donate, bequeath, or devise, sell or pledge the
Example: A gave B in usufruct the profits of a certain building for five usufructuary right (not the thing itself or future crops, for crops
(5) years.
pending at the termination of the usufruct belong to the naked return the things of the same quantity and quality at the time
owner.) the usufruct ceases.

FOURTH. The usufructruary has the right to MAKE USE of things

included in usufruct which gradually deteriorate without being SIXTH. The usufructuary of fruit-bearing trees and shrubs has the right
consumed, through wear and tear, in accordance with the purpose for to make
which they were intended. (a.k.a. Abnormal Usufruct) see: Art. 573. use of the dead trucks, and even of those cut off or up rooted by
accident. (a.k.a. special usufruct) see: Art. 575.
Note: here, the usufructuary is obliged to replace with new
Examples: clothes, furniture, vehicles, books, etc. plants.

Effect of the deterioration: SEVENTH. The usufructuary has the right to make:

a. Because of normal use the usufructuary is not liable. He can a. useful improvements;
return them in the conditions they might be in at the termination of the b. luxurious improvements doe mere pleasure.
usufruct. There is no necessity for him to make any repairs to restore
them to their former condition. Although there is no express provision
on the matter, if the usufructuary does not return the things upon the However:
expiration of the usufruct, he shall pay an indemnity for the value of
the thing at the time such expiration. 1. He must not alter the form or substance of the properly held in
usufruct, unless the naked owner consents;
b. Because of fortuitous event - usufructuary is obliged to make the
necessary and ordinary repairs (see art. 592). But the mere 2. He is not entitled to a refund but either remove the
deterioration thru normal use does not require the ordinary repairs improvement if no substantial damage to the property is caused (see Art
referred to under art. 592. 579); or to set off (compensate) the improvements against damages for
which he may be liable (see: Art. 580). His right does not involve an
c. Because of fraud - the usufructuary is responsible. But such obligation, hence, if the usufructuary does not wish to exercise it, he
liability make be set off against improvements. (see: Art. 580); cannot be compelled by the naked owner to remove his improvements.
The option to remove is granted to the usufructuary.

FIFTH. The usufructuary has the right to MAKE USE of consumable

things in usufruct. (a.k.a. quasi-usufruct, see art. 574) Rule in case of set off: (see. Art. 580)

Notes: (the principle of creditor-debtor relationship applies)

a. If damage is greater than the improvement - usufructuary is liable for
Here, the usufructuary becomes the owner of the things the
(consumable) in usufruct, such as a sum of money or a quantity of excess;
liquid of grain but he has the obligation to pay their current price or

b. If improvement is greater than the damage - the naked owner is not The usufructuary BEFORE entering upon the enjoyment of the property
liable to is
refund the excess. OBLIGED:

Rule. If a co-owner of a property gives the usufruct of his share to a. to make after notice tot he owner an INVENTORY of all property
another: (see. Art. 582) which shall contain appraisal of the movables and description of
the condition of the immovables;
The usufructuary takes the co-owners place as to:
b. To give SECURITY, binding himself to fulfill the obligations imposed
a. administration or management; upon
b. collection of fruits or interest (but not as to alienation, him.
disposition, or
creation of any real right over the property, since these are strict Note: The obligation to make inventory and to give security are not
acts of necessary in order for the right to the usufruct begins but are merely
ownership, unless authorized by the naked owner.) required before physical possession and enjoyment of the
property can be had.
Effect of Partition:
1. The usufructuary continues to have the usufruct of the part
allotted to the Inventory is not required when:
co-owner concerned.
a. no one will be injured thereby (as in the case of usufruct over a
Note: the co-owner may partition the property even without the periodical pension or incorporeal right (see: Art. 570), provided the
consent of the usufructuary and the partition is binding upon the naked owner consents for the law says may (see: Art. 585);
usufructuary. However, the naked owner (co-owner) must respect the b. in case of waiver by the naked owner; or when there is stipulation (in a
usufructuary. will or contract).

Security is not required when :

a. no one will be injured thereby (as in the case of usufruct
over a periodical
The usufructuary has obligations : a) before the usufruct; b) during b. pension or incorporeal right (see: Art. 570), provided the
the naked owner consents for the law says may (see : Art.
usufruct; and c) after the usufruct. 585);
c. in case of waiver by the naked owner; or when there is
stipulation (in
Art. 583: a will or contract).
d. When the usufructuary is the donor of the property (who has
GENERAL RULE : reserved the usufruct). (The naked owner should be
grateful enough not to require the security.);
e. In cases of caucion juratoria (promise under oath), see: Art. 3. they must have occurred during the usufruct;
587. 4. they must have happened with our without the fault of the

CAUTION JURATORIA, meaning of : Note: If the naked owner had demanded the repair, and the
usufructuary still
fails to do so, the owner may make them personally or thru another at
Art. 587. Caucion Juratoria a sworn duty to take good care of the the
property and return the same at the end of the usufruct. expense of the usufructuary.

If a usufruct consists in:

a. furnitures necessary for the use of the usufructuary;

b. house which his family may live; Art. 593. Extraordinary repairs shall be at the expense of the
c. tools and implements and other movables necessary for an The usufructuary is obliged to notify the owner when the need for such
industry or vocation which the usufructuary is engaged, and the repairs is
usufructuary cannot afford to give the required security, he may file a urgent.
petition before the courts to allow him to enjoy possession of the said
properties in usufruct and swear under oath to take good care and
return them at the end of the usufruct. Rules governing the payment of debts of the naked owner
if the usufruct is a universal one (constituted on the whole of a
RULE ON ORDINARY REPAIRS: and the naked owner has debts or is obliged to make periodical

Under Art. 592, the usufructuary is obliged to make the ordinary

repairs 1. If there is stipulation to pay the debts of the naked owner:
needed by the thing given in usufruct.
Apply Art. 758:
Note: These are repairs needed because of an event or an act that
endangers the a. pay only for prior debts and not for debts contracted after the
preservation of the thing. (as distinguished from deterioration under Art. usufruct has
572). been made, unless there is a declaration to the contrary;

Conditions for liability: b. pay only for debts up to the value of the property if usufruct unless,
1. they are required by normal or natural use ; contrary is intended.
2. they are needed for preservation;
2. If there is no stipulation to pay the debts of the naked owner 2. imposable only against anothers property and never in one owns
apply Art. 759 : property; it can exist only when the servient estate and the
dominant estate belong to two different owners;
a. As a rule, there is not obligation to pay;
b. the only exception is that when the usufruct was constituted in 3. it is a form of limitation on ownership and a restriction on the
fraud of creditors. enjoyment of ones own property;

in fraud of creditor when at the time of the constitution of the 4. it is inseparable and indivisible; it cannot be separated from the
usufruct, the naked owner did not reserve sufficient property to pay his tenement to which it belongs or divided even if there is division of
debts. This is presumed. the tenement; (see Arts. 617 & 618)

5. it is intransmissible (unless the tenement affected is also

EASEMENTS OR SERVITUDES transmitted or alienated;

6. it is perpetual unless extinguished.

Easement is an encumbrance imposed upon an immovable for the
benefit of :
EASEMENTS may also be :
a. community; ] personal
b. one or more persons; ] easement I. According to the MANNER they are exercised or used :

c. another immovable ] e. CONTINUOUS easements - are those the use of which is

belonging to a different owner ] real easement. or may be INCESSANT (without any interruption) or without
(see Art. 614) the intervention of any act of man;

Note : Here, for easement to be continuous the use does not

Immovable, meaning of - the term immovable must be have to be without interruption; it is enough that it MAY BE incessant;
construed in its common and not legal sense. Hence it refers to
immovables by nature, such as lands, roads and buildings Note : The distinction between continuous and discontinuous
easements refers only to the exercise of the servitude, but not to the
Servient estate - is one which is burdened by a servitude; essence, because the servitude exists continuously, whether it is being
used or not.
Dominant estate - is one that is benefited as a result of an
easement. Examples :

Easements of drainage - the fact that water flows in it signifies

CHARACTERISTICS of Easement : continuous use but the absence of any flow does not make it non-
continuous. It is enough that the flow of water may be without
1. it is a real right; interruption;

Easements of aqueduct - it is considered as continuous (at
least, for purposes of prescription) even though the flow of water may
not be continuous, or its used depends upon the needs of the dominant a. POSITIVE Easement - Here, the owner of the servient estate is
estate, or upon a schedule or alternate days or hours. OBLIGED : (a.k.a servitude of sufferance)

f. DISCONTINUOUS Easements - they are used at intervals 1. to allow something to be done on his property; or
and depend upon the acts of man. 2. to do something himself on his property.

Example : Example:

Easement of right of way because it can be exercised only if a a. Easement of light and view on openings made on a PARTY
man passes or puts his feet over somebody elses land. WALL.

If one opens a window on a party wall the other owner may close it
II. According to whether or not their EXISTENCE is indicated: anytime. However, if he does not close it, and the other owner
acquires the easement by prescription, the other owner can no longer
a. APPARENT Easement - those made known and continually kept in close it. Therefore the owner of the servient estate is allowing
view by external signs that reveal the use and enjoyment of the something to be done on his property.
Note : Easement of light and view on a party wall. Here, the
Note : The sign need not be seen but should be susceptible of being owners of such wall permit the encumbrance to burden their common
seen. wall.

Example : b. the owner of the servient estate has the duty to cut off the
branches of his tree extending over the neighboring estate.
- a dam;
- a window in a party wall visible to both owners; c. NEGATIVE Easements - Here, the owner of the servient estate is
- a right of was if there is an alley or a permanent path; prohibited to do something which he could lawfully do were it not
for the existence of the easement. (a.k.a. servitude of limitation)
b. NON-APPARENT Easements - they show no external indication of
their existence. Example:

Examples : (in general, negative easements) Easement of light and view on openings made on ones OWN WALL.

Easement of not building to a more than certain height;

When a person makes an opening on his own wall to admit light
A right of way if there is no visible path or alley. below the ceiling joist, and he acquires a servitude to admit such light,
the servitude is a negative one, because :

III. According to PURPOSE of the easement or nature of the limitation :

It imposes upon the owner of the adjacent tenement the Note : Continuous and apparent easement may be either positive or
obligation not to negative
construct on his own land in such a manner as to obstruct the light. depending upon whether or not a "sufferance" or a "limitation" is to be
How are easements established ?
a. If easement is POSITIVE :
Art. 619. Easements are established either by law (legal easements) or
by the will of the owners (voluntary easements). the period of prescription is counted from the day of the
dominant estate began to exercise it:

MODES OF ACQUIRING EASEMENTS Example : A and B are neighbors and they own a party wall. If A
makes an
opening or window in the party wall in 1988, B can close it
Art. 620. Continuous and apparent easements are acquired either by anytime
virtue of a before 1998. Because if by the time the window is still
title or by prescription of ten years. open, A has
already acquired the easement of light and view by
a. Continuous and apparent easements (meaning they are continuous prescription of 10
and years, counted from the opening of the window. Note : A
apparent at the same time) may be acquired by : window
on a party wall is something allowed by a co-owner to be
Title (any kind of juridical act or law sufficient to create the done on
encumbrance i.e. : contract, donation, testamentary his own property and may therefore give rise to a positive
succession); easement
of sufferance.
Prescription (10 years whether in good faith or in bad faith).
Note : see Art. 1115 - general rules on prescription are not c. If the easement is NEGATIVE :
applicable in cases of prescription provided for by special or
particular provisions. the period is counted from the date of NOTARIAL PROHIBITION
made upon the servient estate.
b. Discontinuous and apparent - only by title;
c. Continuous and apparent - only by title; Example: A and B are neighbors. On his building's wall, A opened a
d. Discontinuous and non-apparent - only by title. window
beneath the ceiling joist to admit light, in 1978. Even after
ten years
Rule (Art. 621) in order that continuous and apparent easements may (1988), B may still obstruct the light by constructing on his
be own lot a
acquired thru prescription : building higher than A's unless A makes a Notarial Prohibition
prohibiting B from making the obstruction.

QUESTION : If in 1984, A makes a prohibition, may B still make the 4. he must not alter the easement nor render it
obstruction? more burdensome;

Answer : Yes, because , it is only in 1994 (ten years after the notarial to ask for a MANDATORY INJUNCTION to prevent impairment or
prohibition) when A may be said to have acquired the negative obstruction in the exercise of the easement as when the owner
easement of light and view. After 1994, B may no longer obstruct. of the servient estate obstructs the right of way, building a wall
or fence (see Resolme vs Lazo, 27 Phil 416);
Art. 624.
to RENOUNCE totally (for an easement is indivisible) if he
Apparent sign of easement. desires exemption from the contribution to expenses (Art. 628);

The existence of an apparent sign of easement between two

estates, established or maintained by the owner or both, shall be OBLIGATIONS OF THE DOMINANT ESTATE
considered, should either of them be alienated, as a title in order that
the easement may continue actively or passively, unless at the time
the ownership of the two estates is divided, the contrary should be a. He cannot alter the easement (Art. 627);
provided in the title of the conveyance of either of them, or the sign b. He cannot make it more burdensome (Art. 627);
aforesaid should be removed before the execution of the deed . This
provision shall also apply in case of the division of a thing owned in
common by two or more persons. Thus he cannot use the easement except for movable originally

Refers not to an existing sign but a sign of an existing easement; In the easement of right of way, he cannot increase the agreed
It is the servitude between the two tenements which must exist not the width of the path, nor deposit soil or materials outside the
sign. boundaries agreed upon (for the acts would be increasing the
burden). But he may allow others to use the path (this really
does not increase the burden) except if the contrary has been
RIGHTS OF THE DOMINANT ESTATE stipulated. (see : Valderama vs North Negros Sugar Co., 48
Phili 492)

To exercise the easement and all necessary rights for its use If there be several dominant estates each must contribute to
including accessory easement (Art. 625); necessary repairs and expenses in proportion to the benefits
received by each estate (and not in proportion to the value of
To make on the servient estate all works necessary for the use each estate). (in the absence of proof, we would presume the
and preservation of the servitude, BUT : benefits to be equal.)

1. this must be at his own expense;

2. he must NOTIFY the servient owner;
3. select convenient time and manner;


Art. 631. Easements are extinguished :

To retain ownership and possession of the portion of his land
affected by the easement (Art. 630) even if indemnity for the 1. By MERGER:
right is given (as in the case of easement of right of way) (Art.
649), unless the contrary has been stipulated; The merger must be absolute (without any condition), complete
(not partial) and not temporary. Thus, if the owner of the
To make use of the easement, unless deprived by stipulation servient buys the whole portion affected, the merger is
provided that the exercise of the easement is not adversely complete, and the easement is extinguished. But if the portion
affected (Art. 630), and provided further that he contributes to bought is not the portion affected, the easement naturally
the expenses in proportion to the benefits received, unless remains.
there is a contrary stipulation (Art. 628, par. 2);
b. Examples:
To change the location of a very inconvenient easement
provided that an equally convenient substitute is made, without Temporary merger :
injury to the dominant estate. (Art. 629, part. 2)
Q: The dominant owner, sold a retro his estate to B, the servient
owner. Is the easement extinguished?
A: No, it is only suspended for the merger is only temporary. It
is revived when the property is redeemed.
He cannot impair the use of the easement (Art. 629, par. 1)
Conditional merger :
He must contribute to the expenses in case he uses the
easement, unless there is a contrary stipulation. (Art. 628, par. The dominant estate was donated to the servient estate, but it
2); was stipulated that if the servient owner later marries X, the property
reverts to the dominant owner. Pending the resolutory condition, the
In case of impairment, to restore conditions to the status quo at merger can considred temporary, and the easement is merely
his expense plus damages. (In case of obstruction, as when he suspended. When the servient owner marries X, the easement is
fences the original right of way, and offers an inconvenient revived. If no marriage takes place (as when X dies ) the easement
substitute way, which is farther and requires turning at a sharp really is extinguished.
angle, he may be restrained by injunction.) See; Resolme vs
Lazo, 27 Phil. 416); 2. By NON-USER for 10 years :

To pay for the expenses incurred for the change of location or Non-user refers to an easement that has once been used
from of the easement (in the proper case). See; Art. 629, par. 2 because one cannot discontinue using what one never used.
As a general rule, the renunciation must be express, clear and
Non-user means voluntary abstention and not due to fortuitous specific (otherwise it may be confused with none-user).
event, because the basis of this cause is presumptive However, it may be tacit for as long as there are acts which
renunciation. clearly reveal it beyond doubt.

Note: 6. REDEMPTION agreed upon :

From what time to compute? This is voluntary redemption, existing because of an stipulation.
Stipulations may provide conditions under which the easement
a. discontinuous - (like right of way) from the time it ceased to be would be extinguished.
b. continuous - (like aqueduct) from the day on which an act contrary 7. OTHER causes :
to the
same took place. Thus the erection of works a. Expropriation of the servient estate;
incompatible with b. Annulment, recession or cancellation of the title that constituted the
the exercise of the easement or totally obstructing the easement;
servitude, agreed to by the owner of the dominant c. Abandonment of the servient estate;
estate, d. Resolution of the right of the granter to create the easement (as
amounts to a tacit renunciation and extinguishes the when there
servitude. is redemption of the property sold a retro because of the exercise of
(see Ongsiako vs Ongsiako, 3-30-57) the right
of conventional redemption);

The impossibility of using the easement, which arises from the

condition of the tenements, only suspends the servitude, until
such time when it can be used again. An example of this would LEGAL EASEMENTS
be the flooding of the servient tenement over which a right of
way exists. Unless, extinguishment is caused by the necessary
period for non-user. Art. 634. Easements imposed by law have for their object either public
usie or
4. BY EXPIRATION of the term or FULFILLMENT of the condition : the interest of private persons.

Example: An easement was agreed upon to last till the owner Legal easements - those imposed by law and which have for their
of the dominant estate becomes a lawyer. When the condition object either:
is fulfilled the easement is extinguished.
a. public use;
5. WAIVER or RENUNCIATION of the dominant estate: - governed by special laws (i.e. Law on Waters; Irrigation Law; Water

b. the interest of private persons. done.
- governed by the provisions of the Civil Code; agreement between
the parties; general or local laws. Requisites :

Different kinds of legal easements : The property is surrounded by the estates of others;

there is no adequate outlet to a public highway. (If outlet is thru

1. easement relating to waters; the water, like a river or sea, under Spanish law, the easement
cannot be demanded for there exists an adequate outlet; it is
- natural drainage of lands (Art. 637) believed that in Philippines, a distinction must be made,
- natural drainage of buildings (Arit. 674) depending on danger, convenience and cost.);
- easement on riparian banks for navigation; floatage and salvage
(Art. 638) There must be payment of proper indemnity, (but later on, the
- easement of a dam (Arts. 639, 647) amount may be refunded when easement ends, see: Art. 655);
- easement for drawing water or for watering animals (Arts. 640-641)
- easement of aqueduct (Arts. 643-646) It must be established at a point least prejudicial to the servient
- easement for the construction of a stop lock or sluice gate. estate. (This is generally but not necessarily the shortest
2. right of way;
3. party wall; The isolation must not be due to the proprietor's own acts (as
4. light and view; when he has built enclosing walls, see : Art. 649);
5. drainage
6. intermediate distance; Demandable only by the owner or one with a real right like a
7. easement against nuisance; usufructuary. (The lessee should ask the lessor to demand the
8. lateral and subjacent support. easement from adjoining estates.)

Note : the onus or the burden of proof is upon the owner of the
EASEMENT OF RIGHT OF WAY dominant estate to show the specific averments in his complaint the
existence of the requisites or preconditions enumerated.

Art. 649. Easement of right of way.

Definition - the easement or privilege by which one person or a 285 SCRA 351
particular class
of persons is allowed to pass over another's land , usually FACTS:
one particular path or line. The term right of way, may Plaintiff spouses Arsenio and Roslynn Fajardo are the registered
either refer owners of a piece of land, Lot No. 124 of the Obando Cadastre,
to the easement itself or the strip of land over which containing an area of 1,043 sq. meters located at Paco, Obando,
passage can be Bulacan.
where the is shortest and will cause the least damage and shortest
Said lot was surrounded by Lot 1, a fishpond, on the northeast distance are both established in one tenement the petitioners
portion thereof; by lot 126, owned by Folentino Cruz, on the southeast property.
portion; by Lot 6-A and a portion of Lot 6-B owned respectively by
spouses Cesar and Raquel Sta. Maria, on the southwest; and by lot
122, owned by the Jacinto family, on the northwest.

On February 17, 1992, plaintiff spouses Fajardo filed a complaint

against defendants spouses Sta. Maria for the establishment of an
easement of right of way. They alleged that lot 124, is surrounded by NUISANCE
properties belonging to other persons, including those of the
defendants. That since plaintiffs have no adequate outlet to the Why is nuisance a modification of ownership?
provincial road, an easement of right of way passing through either of
the alternative defendants properties which are directly abutting the Because if your property becomes a nuisance, you can be
provincial road would be plaintiffs only convenient, direct and shortest deprived of its enjoyment and even be deprived of its ownership. So, if
access to and from the provincial road. Plaintiffs predecessor in interest your house is about to collapse and may cause injury to others, the
have been passing through the properties of the defendants in going to owner can be compelled to demolish the house.
and from their lot.
NUISANCE, defined :
The trial court granted the easement prayed for by the private
respondents which decision was affirmed by the CA. Art. 694 provides: A nuisance is any act, omission,
establishment, condition of property, or anything else which:
1. Injures or endangers the health or safety of the others; or
Whether or not respondents are entitled to compulsory
servitude of right of way? Ex: house in danger of falling;
Explosive factory;
2. Annoys or offends the senses; or
Requisites for an estate to be entitled to a compulsory servitude
of right of way: 1) the dominant estate is surrounded by other Ex : Too much noise or horn blowing;
immovables and has no adequate outlet to a public highway; 2) there A chimney which renders a house uninhabitable due to excessive
is payment of proper indemnity; 3) the isolation is not due to the acts smoke;
of the proprietor of the dominant estate; 4) the right way claimed is at
the point less prejudicial to the servient estate; 5) and insofar as 3. Shocks, defies or disregards decency or morality; or
consistent with this rule, where the distance from the dominant estate
to a public highway may be the shortest. Note:

Where there are several tenements surrounding the dominant The standard of morality changes. So that what was immoral
estate, and the estate may be established on any of them, the one 20 years ago may not be immoral today. The third instance then
depends on time, place and standard of morality of countries and Nuisance per se a nuisance at all times and under all
people. circumstances or conditions.
Nuisance per accidens - a nuisance only under certain
Ex : public exhibition of a naked person; circumstances or conditions.
Public display of nude posters. 3. Attractive nuisance This is any contrivance which is very
attractive to children but very dangerous to them.
4. Obstructs or interferes with the free passage of any public highway
or streets, or any body of water; or REMINDER :

Ex: houses erected on public streets. An attractive nuisance is not illegal. It may be legal or
legitimate thing but because of its nature, it can easily injure
5. Hinders or impairs the use of property. children that is why it is called attractive nuisance. Example:
Ex: illegal constructions on anothers land.
If one is an owner of an attractive nuisance, he is required to
exercise the highest degree of diligence to prevent it from being
What are the different kinds of nuisance? played by children.

1. Public or private nuisance (Art. 695):

Hidalgo Enterprises vs. Balandan
Public nuisance the doing of or the failure to do something 91 Phil. 488
that injuriously affects safety, health or morals of the public, or
works some substantial annoyance, inconvenience or injury to
the public. Facts: A certain ice-plant factory maintained two big tanks full
of water in a place where children pass by. A boy 8 years of age
- it affects a community or neighborhood or any considerable passed by and entered the premises of the factory and took a bath in
number one of the tanks. While swimming, the boy drowned and died. The
of person although the extent of the annoyance, danger or parents of the boy filed an action for damages against the factory
damage alleging that the tank full of water was an attractice nuisance and yet
upon individuals may be unequal. the factory did not provide any precaution.

Private nuisance One which violates only private rights and The following issues were raised:
produces damage to but one or few persons and cannot be said
to be public. 1. Whether or not water can be considered an attractive nuisance.

The SC held that water in any form is not an attractive

2. Nuisance per se or nuisance per accidens: nuisance. Nature in itself has created streams, lakes, and pools which
attract children. Lurking in their waters is always the danger of
drowning. Against this danger, children are to know the danger.
NO, an action for abatement of a nuisance is one which is
2. How about the tank full of water? imprescriptible. A nuisance can be abated anytime.

It is neither an attractive nuisance. Any imitation of nature, like Art. 698: Lapse of time cannot be legalize any nuisance whether public
a swimming pool, is not an attractive nuisance. So, if the owner of a or private.
private property creates an artificial pool on his own property, merely
duplicating the work of nature without adding any new danger, he is Art. 1143, 2nd par, an action to abate a public or private
not liable. nuisance is not
extinguished by prescription:
3. Did the owner of the factory exercise the highest degree
of diligence because it is not an attractive nuisance. What are the remedies against a nuisance?

Who can be liable for damages for the nuisance cause? It depends on whether it is a public or private nuisance.

The owner or possessor who originally caused the nuisance and 1. If it is a PUBLIC NUISANCE, there are 3 possible remedies:
the subsequent owner or possessor of the property are jointly and
severally liable. (Art. 696: Every successive owner or possessor of a. CRIMINAL PROSECUTION under the Penal Code or any local
property who fails or refuses to abate a nuisance in that property ordiance;
started by a former owner or possessor is liable therefore in the same
manner as the one who created it. Note: This remedy is instituted by public officers (ordinarily the
Who are liable?
In general :
c. EXTRA-JUDICIAL ABATEMENT (abatement, without judicial
a. One who creates; proceedings. (Art. 699);
b. All who participates;
c. One who adopts; Note: Remedy (b) and (c) above may be brought by any private
d. One who continues a previously existing nuisance; individual if
e. One who refuses to abate nuisance. the nuisance is specially injurious to himself.

If a property which has already caused nuisance is removed, is 2. If it is a PRIVATE NUISANCE, there are 2 possible remedies:
it a defense?
a. a civil action; or
Art. 697: NO, the abatement of a nuisance does not preclude the right b. abatement, without judicial proceedings (Art. 705)
of any person injured to recover damages for its past existence.
QUESTION : What are the requisites for the abatement of nuisance,
May an action for abatement of a nuisance prescribe? whether
public or private, without judicial proceedings? (Art. 703
and 704)
nuisance be liable for damages?
Art. 707:
1. there must be showing that the nuisance is specially injurious to
the person 1. If he causes unnecessary injury; or
seeking the abatement of nuisance; (Art. 703) 2. If an alleged nuisance is later declared by the courts to be not a
real nuisance.
2. that demand be first made upon the owner or possessor of the
property to Cases:
abate the nuisance;
1. PP vs de Guzman, et. Al., 90 Phil. 132
3. that such demand has been rejected or ignored; 2. Espiritu vs Municipal Council, 102 Phil 867
3. Iloilo Cold Storage vs. Mun. Council, 24 Phil. 471
4. that the abatement must be approved by the City Engineer in 4. Canlas vs. de Aquino, 2 SCRA 814
Manila and 5. San Rafael vs City of Manila, 46 SCRA 40
other chartered cities, and in the provinces, by the Provincial Health 6. Velasco vs. Manila Electric, 40 SCRA 342
Officer 7. Ramcar vs Millar, 6 SCRA 517
and executed with the assistance of or attended by a member of the

5. that the abatement must be done in such a way that it does not
breach Modes of acquiring ownership :
public peace, or do unnecessary injury;
a. Original modes : ( ownership is acquiring for the first time )
6. that the value of the thing to be abated does not exceed P3,000.
1. Occupation; ( hunting, fishing, hidden treasure )
2. Intellectual Creation ; ( books, copy rights, patents, letters )
b. Derivative mode : ( there is merely a transfer of ownership;
Criminal prosecution is not mentioned. However, if a crime has somebody else was the owner before )
been committed as defined in the Revised Penal Code, criminal
prosecution can proceed. 3. Succession ;
4. Donation ;
If the nuisance to be abated is more than P3,000, it cannot be 5. Prescription ; ( Art. 1106 )
abated without judicial proceedings. It can be abated only 6. Law ; (Arts. 158, 445, 461, 465, 466, 681,1434,1456 NCC )
through a criminal or civil action in court as the case may be. 7. Tradition ( meaning : legal delivery actual / constructive ) as
When may a private person or a public officer extra judicially consequence of certain contracts ( i.e. : sale, barter,
abating a assignment,
simple loan or mutuum ) unowned or abandoned property );
There must be intent to Appropriate;
Mode - the process of acquiring or transferring ownership; The requisites or conditions of the law must be complied with
( i.e. : good faith; proper title; legal period of time )
Title - that which is not ordinarily sufficient to convey
ownership, but which gives a juridical justification for a mode; that is, it
provides the cause for the acquisition of ownership. Art. 714. The ownership of a piece of land cannot be acquired by
Example :
Reasons :
If A sells to B a specific car for a specific amount, the sale is the
title; by virtue of such title, A should now deliver the property to B. It because a land that is not shown to belong to anyone is
is the delivery or tradition that makes B the owner; it is the tradition presumed to be a public land;
that is the mode. occupation as a mode of acquiring ownership refers to movable
which are either considered as res nullius or res derelicta;


Occupation is the acquisition of ownership by SEIZING corporeal

things that have no owner, made with the intention of acquiring them, Intellectual Creation is the product of mental labor embodied in
and accomplished according to legal rules. writing or some other material form.

Art. 721. By intellectual creation, the following persons acquire

Occupation distinguished from possession : ownership :

occupation can take place only with respect to property without The author with regard to his literary, dramatic, historical, legal,
an owner; while possession can refer to all kinds of property philosophical, scientific or other work;
whether with or without an ownership. The composer, as to his musical composition;
The painter, sculptor, or other artist, with respect to the product
occupation, in itself when proper confers ownership; but of his art;
possession does not by itself give rise to ownership. The scientist or technologist or any other person with regard to
his discovery or invention.

Requisites for occupation : Art 722.

There must be a seizure of apprehension ( note : the material Ownership before publication exclusive;
holding is not required as long as there is right of disposition ) ; Ownership after publication no more exclusive right except when
The property seized must be corporeal ( personal ) property; work is copyrighted.
The property seized must be susceptible of appropriation (either
Note : Mere circulation among close friends and associates however, is 1. to encourage individuals to intellectual labor by assuring them of
not considered publication. just rewards;
2. to secure the society of the largest benefit of their products.
Art. 723. Letters and other communications in writing are owned by
the person to whom they are addressed and delivered, but they cannot be What may be copyrighted? see : Sec 2 PD 49
published or disseminated without the consent of the writer or his heirs.
However the court may authorize their publication or dissemination if the Right of a copyright owner :
public good or the interest of justice so requires.
to print, reprint, publish, copy, distribute, multiply, sell and
Rules : make photographic illustrations of the copyrighted work;
to make translations or other versions or extracts or
The physical or material object is owned by the person to whom arrangements or adaptations thereof;
it has been sent; to exhibit, perform, represent, produce or reproduce the
The thoughts, ideas and form of expression contained in the copyright work;
letter belong to the sender or author of the letter. to make any other use or disposition of the copyrighted work.
The recipient cannot publish or disseminate the letter , unless :

a. the writer or the writers heirs consent; Extent of the protection :

b. the public good or the interest of justice so requires as when
the : Concepts, theories, speculations, abstracts of ideas however
original they may be are not covered by the protection, because
- the publication is necessary for the vindication of the character of there is no monopoly of theories and speculations of an author.
the person to whom the letter is addressed; He may transfer these theories of ideas into intellectual
- letter is produced as evidence in court, in the course of the products as books, letters or any form of writing or illustration.
administration of These are exclusively his.
justice, except when the letter constitutes a privilege
communication and But once caused to be published, his exclusive right over the
cannot be admitted in evidence without the consent of the writer. same causes, except when copyrighted. But the protection
extends only in so far as the form, language or style of the
Nature of Copyright : production are concerned and not the theories or the ideas
themselves. So that when one copies the form, style and
It is the exclusive right secured by law to an author or his language, there is infringement. It should be a copy of the
assigns to multiply and dispose of copies of an intellectual original but similarity alone is not sufficient, what is important
or artistic creation. though is the copy is so near to the original as to give to every
person seeing it the idea created by the original.
It is an corporeal right to print and publish, and exist
independent of the corporeal property out of which it arises.
NOTE : Copyright does not extend to the general concept or format of a
The objectives of copyright are : dating
game show.
protection shall extend, under this law, to any idea, procedure,
system, method or operation, concept, principle discovery or
Francisco G. Joaquin & BJ Productions, Inc., mere data as such, even if they are expressed, explained,
vs. Hon. Franklin Drilon, et. al., illustrated or embodied in a work; news of the days and other
[G.R. No. 108946, January 28, 1999] miscellaneous facts having the character of mere items of press
information; or any official text of a legislative, administrative or
legal nature, as well as any official translation thereof.
FACTS : This as a prosecution for violation of PD 49. The
Decree on Intellectual Property, petitioners, Joaquin and BJ Productions, Cinematographic works and works produced by a
Inc. holder of a Certificate of Copyright of a TV dating game show, process analogous to cinematography or any process for
Rhoda and Me, claimed that IXL Productions & RPN Channel 9 making audio-visual recordings;
infringed upon their copyright by copying the format and style thereof
in its show, Its a Date. The copyright does not extend to the general concept or
format of its dating game show. Accordingly, by the very nature
HELD : The Court, speaking thru Justice Mendoza, ruled that the of the subject of petitioner BJPIs copyright, the investigating
format of a show is not copyrightable. Sec. 2 of P.D. 49 is prosecutor should have the opportunity to compare the
substantially the same as Sec. 172 of R.A. 8293, The Intellectual videotapes of the two shows.
Property Code of the Philippines. The format or mechanics of a
television show is not included in the list of protected works in S2 of Mere description by words of the general format of the
P.D. No. 49. For this season, the protection afforded by the law cannot two dating game shows in insufficient, the presentation of the
be extended to cover them. master videotape in evidence was indispensable to the
determination of the existence of probable cause. As aptly
Copyright, in the strict sense of the term, is purely a statutory observed by respondent Secretary of Justice: A television show
right. It is a new or independent right granted by the statute, includes more than mere words can describe because it
and not simply a pre-existing right regulated by the statute. involves a whole spectrum of visuals and effects, video and
Being a statutory grant, the rights are only such as the statute audio, such that no similarity or dissimilarity may be found by
confers, and may be obtained and enjoyed only with respect to merely describing the general copyright/format of both dating
the subjects and by the persons, and on terms and conditions game shows.
specified in the statute.

P.D. No. 49, S2, in enumerating what subject are subject Remedies in case of infringement :
to copyright, refers to finished works and not to concepts. The
copyright does not extend to an idea, procedure, process, a. damages;
system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, b. injunction;
regardless of the form in which it is described, explained,
illustrated, or embodied in such work. Thus, the new Effect of expiration :
On the final expiration of the copyright term, the whole work
SECTION 175. Unprotected Subject Matter. - falls into the public domain and becomes free and unrestricted.
Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 172 and 173, no

In the Asia Brewery case, the Supreme Court deviating from

SIMILARITY TEST : To determine whether a trademark has been the Del Monte ruling, further said : The ruling may not apply
infringed, the mark as a whole must be considered and not as to all kinds of products. In resolving cases of infringement and
dissected. If the buyer is deceived, it is attributable to the marks as a unfair competition, the courts should take into consideration
totality, not usually to any part of it [Del Monte Corporation vs Court of several factors which would affect its conclusion, to wit : the
Appeals, 181 SCRA 410] age, training and education of the usual purchaser, the nature
and cost of the article, whether the article is bought for
DISSIMILARITY TEST [or the so-called visible difference test] : In immediate consumption and also the conditions under which it
the case of Asia Brewery vs Court of Appeals (224 SCRA 437), the SC is usually purchased. The Del Monte case involved catsup, a
applied the dissimilarity test or visible difference test in common household item which is bought off the store shelves
determining whether or not there exists unfair competition. In this by housewives and house help who, if they are illiterate and
case, while the Supreme Court did not abandon the similarity test, it cannot identify the product by name or brand, would very likely
nevertheless, qualified the same when it applied the visible identify the product by mere recollection of its appearance.
difference test especially so when the dissimilarities abound. It said : Since the competitor, Sunshine Sauce Mfg. Industries, not only
Besides the dissimilarity in their names, the following other used recycled Del Monte bottles for its catsup (despite the
dissimilarities in the trade dress or appearance of the competing warning embossed on the bottles : Del Monte Corporation. Not
brands abound : 1) The SAN MIGUEL PALE PILSEN bottle has a slender to be refilled.) but also used labels which were a colorable
tapered neck. The BEER PALE PILSEN bottle has a fat, bulging neck; 2) imitation of Del Montes label, we held that there was
The words pale pilsen on SMCs label are printed in bold and laced infringement of Del Montes trademark and unfair competition
letters along a diagonal band, whereas the words pale pilsen on ABIs by Sunshine. Our ruling in Del Monte would not apply to beer
bottle are half the size and printed in slender block letters on a straight which is not usually picked up from a store shelf by ordered by
horizontal band; 3) The names of the manufacturers are prominently brand by the beer drinker himself from the storekeeper or
printed on their respective bottles. SAN MIGUEL PALE PILSEN is waiter in a pub or restaurant.
Bottled by San Miguel Brewery Philippines,whereas BEER PALE
PILSEN is Especially brewed and bottled by Asia Brewery Incorporated,
Philippines; 4) On the back of ABIs bottle is printed in big, bold letters, In Lim Hoa vs Director of Patents (100 Phil. 214, in rel. to
under a row of flower buds and leaves, its copyrighted slogan : BEER Etepha vs Director, 16 SCRA 495), the Supreme Court was more
NA BEER! Whereas SMCs bottle carries no slogan; 5) The back of the telling : The court differentiated food seasoning product, a
SAN MIGUEL PALE PILSEN bottle carries the SMC logo, whereas the kitchen article of daily consumption, from commodities or
BEER PALE PILSEN bottle has no logo; 6) The SAN MIGUEL PALE PILSEN articles of relatively great value, such as radio and television
bottle cap is stamped with a coat of arms and the words San Miguel sets, air-conditioning units, machinery, etc., where the
Brewery Philippines encircling the same. The BEER PALE PILSEN prospective buyer generally the head of a family or a
bottle cap is stamped with the name BEER in the center, surrounded businessman, before making the purchase, reads the pamphlets
with the words Asia Brewery Incorporated Philippines; 7) Finally, there and all literature available, describing the article he is planning
is a substantial price difference between BEER PALE PILSEN (currently to buy and perhaps even makes comparisons with similar
at P4.25 per bottle) and SAN MIGUEL PALE PILSEN (currently at P7.00 articles in the market. He is not likely to be deceived by
per bottle). One who pays only P4.25 for a bottle of beer cannot expect similarity in the trademarks because he makes a more or less
to receive San Miguel Pale Pilsen from the storekeeper or bartender. study of the same and may even consult his friends about the
relative merit and performance of the article or machinery, as Note : the phrase they do not constitute a demandable debt
compared to others also for sale. (Art. 726) means that the service which was rendered did not produce
an obligation demandable against the donor; or if it had, such
obligation has been renounced in favor of the donor.
Example :

Art. 725. Donation is : A agreed to review B for the bar examinations for a fee of
P10,000.00. Later, B passes the bar examination, and as a gratitude
- an act of liberality whereby a person disposes gratuitously of a gives A a parcel of land worth P20,000.00. The remuneratory donation
thing or here is only with respect to the excess of P10,000.00 because, the
right in favor of another who accept it. services of A constitute a demandable debt, unless, A in the meantime
renounces his fees and in such case , there is donation to the extent of
Essential requisites : P20,000.00.

1. the reduction in the patrimony of the donor; 3. Conditional or Modal when the donation imposes upon the
2. the increase in the patrimony of the donee; donee an obligation in favor of the donor himself or a third person
3. the intent to do an act of liberality. or even the public.

Note : Example :

When a person gets a life insurance and names a third person A piece of land is donated to the city in order that it may be
as his beneficiary, and the insurance becomes payable by the converted into a park or public market.
death of the insured, there is a donation in favor of the
beneficiary not in the sum received by him from the insurer,
but in the total amount of premiums that have been paid by the Form to be followed :
insured. This is the only amount that leaves the patrimony.
If the amount of premiums, however, exceeds the insurance, - in simple / remuneratory donations - form of donations
there is donation only to have extent of the insurance. This is - onerous donations - contracts.
the only amount that is added to the patrimony of the donee.
Art. 727. Illegal or impossible conditions in simple and
Classification of donations : remuneratory donations shall be considered as not imposed.

1. simple the cause is pure liberality ( no strings attached ); Note :

2. remuneratory ( to reward past services which do not constitute
demandable depts. ) It is supposed to be simple ( no string attached ), why is there a
need to have a condition, much less, impossible?
Ex : a donation to one who saved the donors life; If the condition is not void, then the donation is not really
simple, for it has a burden imposed upon the donee.

What is voided here is the impossible condition and not the
donation itself. Art. 735. All person who may contract and dispose of their
property may make a donation.

Art. 730. Art.737. The donors capacity shall be determined as of the time
of the making of the donation.
Effect of the fulfillment of the suspensive condition beyond the lifetime
of the REMINDER :
The phrase as of the time of the making of the donation
Example : A donates a piece of land to B on the condition that should really mean as of the time of the perfection of the
X, As son becomes a lawyer. The fulfillment of the condition even after donation. So that, a physically incapacitated person ( i.e.
the death of the donor does not affect the nature of the donation as unemancipated minors or insane ) may still donate provided
inter vivos. The fulfillment retroacts to the time of the donation. that at the time of his knowledge of the acceptance by the
donee, the incapacity is not present. Although, it is submitted
731. When a person donates something, subject to the that the donation is voidable following the law on contracts
resolutory condition of the donors survival, there is donation inter- which are suppletory to simple donation as in vitiated consent.
The capacity of the donee is determined at the time of the
Note : Fulfillment of a resolutory condition, its effect. perfection of the donation ( at the time he makes known to the
donor his acceptance of the donation).
Example : A was about to undergo a delicate operation. He
donated to B a parcel of land subject to the condition that if A survives
the operation, Bs ownership over the land would terminate, and the Capacity of the Husband or the Wife :
same would revert to A. But if A dies, there is donation inter vivos not
mortis causa.
Husbands or Wives may donate their own capital or paraphernal
properties without the consent of the other. But with respect to
WHEN IS DONATION PERFECTED ? conjugal or community property, they cannot make donations without
the consent of the other, except : moderate donations for charity or on
occasion of family rejoicing or family distress. ( see : Art. 98 & Art. 125
Art. 734. The donation is perfected from the moment the donor of the family code ) ; see also Arts. 113-115 of the family code.
knows of the acceptance by the donee;
May husbands and wives donate to each other ?
Art. 746. Acceptance must be made during the lifetime of the
donor and the donee. Art. 87. Family code Every donation or grant of gratuitous
advantage, direct or indirect, between the spouses during the marriage
shall be void, except moderate gifts which the spouses may give each
WHO MAY DONATE ? other on the occasion of any family rejoicing. The prohibition shall also

apply to person living together as husband and wife without a valid
marriage. The donation may comprehend all present property, meaning
that which the donor can dispose of at the time of the donation
Reason : To protect the creditors and the weaker spouse from the but in all instances, the donor cannot give ore than what he can
dominance of give by will. ( meaning, a person cannot receive more than what
the other. the giver can give by virtue of a will ). Otherwise, the donation
is considered inofficious.
What is moderate is relative. This may be determined based on the
financial The sufficiency can be determined by the court in accordance
status of the family. with the prudence and the exercise of reasonable discretion.

Capacity of a minor :
Excessive or inofficious donation is not void but merely
For purposes of marriage, a person may contract marriage at reducible.
the age of 18 years. But may be enter into a marriage settlement
wherein he may dispose of his future property in favor of his Donations cannot comprehend future property ( Art. 751 ),
prospective spouse without the intervention of the parents? because he cannot give what he does not have, except in case
of contractual succession and donations by reason of marriage (
Art. 78. ( in re : Art. 234 and 236 ) of the Family Code which see : Art. 84, Family Code ) ;
requires that the parents are required to be made parties to the
marriage settlements was impliedly repealed by RA 6809 wherein the
marriage settlements may now be entered by the child personally even WHAT ARE THE FORMALITIES OF A DONATION ?
without the intervention of the parents.

Read also : Donations by reason of marriage Arts. 82 87, Family a. with respect to IMMOVABLE property : ( see : Art. 749 )
- the donation must be in a PUBLIC DOCUMENT ;
- the acceptance must also be in a PUBLIC DOCUMENT;
b. with respect to MOVABLE property :

Art. 750. The donation may comprehend all present property of if value of the thing is more than P5,000.00 :
the donor, or part thereof, provided he reserved he reserves in full
ownership or in usufruct, sufficient means for the support of himself, - must always be in writing, so with the acceptnce
and all of relatives who at the time of the acceptance of the donation,
are by law entitled to be supported by the donor. Without such if the value of the thing is P5,000.00 or less :
reservation, the donation shall be reduced on petition of any person
affected. - may be oral but simultaneous delivery of the thing and the
document representing the right donated is required;
REMINDER : - may be in writing;
- in both instances ( where the donation is either oral or written ), the - if a person agrees to kill another in consideration of a
acceptance may be made orally ( express or implied ) or in writing; donation to
be made in his favor, the donation is void. Here, since the
consideration is illegal, the donation, must necessarily
- there must be a conviction;
See : Arts. 739. and 740

Those made between persons who are guilty of adultery or Those made to a public officer or his spouse, descendants or
concubinage at the time of the donation; ascendants by reason of his office.

Notes : Notes :

- this refers to donations between paramours; - the purpose for the rule is to prevent bribery;
- there is no necessity of proving the guilt in a criminal - the donation is void by reason of public policy.
it is enough that the guilt may be proven by a
preponderance of Art. 740. Incapacity to succeed by will shall be applicable to
evidence in a civil action for the declaration of nullity of donations inter-vivos.
donation; The following persons are disqualified :
- the commission of the adultery or concubinage must be
at the a. the priest who heard the confession of the donor during his
time of the donation and not after; last illness, or the minister of the gospel who extended
- when the purpose of the donation is to initiate, continue, spiritual aid to him during the same period ;
or compensate the illicit relations between the b. the relatives of such priest or minister of the gospel within
paramours, the the 4th civil
donation is void. But if the intention is to indemnify the degree, the church the order, chapter, community,
damaged organization, or
caused to the other at the time of separation, the institution to which such priest or minister belongs;
donation is
valid. c. a guardian with respect to donations made by a ward in his
Those made between persons found guilty of the same offense, before the final accounts of the guardianship have been
in consideration thereof; approved,
even if the donor should die after the approval thereof;
Notes : nevertheless
any donation made by the ward in favor of the guardian
when the
latter is his ascendant, descendant, brother, sister, or b. immovable property the ownership shall belong to
spouse, shall be the
valid; donee who first recorded it in the registry of property.

d. any physician surgeon, nurse, health officer, or druggist who c. if there be no inscription, the ownership shall
took care pertain to the
of the donor during his last illness; donee who in good faith was the first in the
possession; and
e. individuals, associations and corporations not permitted by in the absence thereof, to the donee who presents
law to the
receive donations. oldest title, provide there is good faith.

Note : The incapacity to inherit by reason of unworthiness

provided in
Art. 1032 is not included within the scope of the above REVOCATION AND REDUCTION OF DONATIONS
article. A
donation made to a person who falls under the
provisions of said Art. 760. Every donation inter-vivos made by a person having no
article would be valid, because a testamentary provision children or descendants, legitimate or legitimated by subsequent
made in marriage, or illegitimate, may be revoked or reduced by the happening
favor of such person after the testator has knowledge of of any of these events ;
the act
of unworthiness would constitute pardon under Art. 1. If the donor, after the donation, should have legitimate or
1033. On the legitimated children, even though they be posthumous;
other hand, if the donation has already been made when 2. If the child of the donor whom the latter believed to be dead
the when he made the donation, should turn out to be living;
cause of unworthiness occurs, the donation is not 1. If the donor should subsequently adopt a minor child.
revoked only
by the causes mentioned in Arts. 760, 764 and 765. Notes :

When the revocation should take effect :

The donation is revoked or reduced by the happening of any of
the events enumerated in Art. 760. In other words, the revocation or
Apply the rule on double sales, Art. 1544, NCC; reduction takes place ipso jure. No action is necessary to revoke or
reduce the donation which is already considered by law as revoked.
a. movable property - the ownership shall be Court action is necessary however, when the donee refuses to return
transferred to the donee who have first taken the property. In such case, the decision of the court will be merely
possession thereof in good faith; declaratory of the revocation it will not be a revocatory act.

Birth, reappearance and adoption as causes for the revocation Art. 764.
or reduction. The article seeks to protect the presumptive
legitimate or the expected legitime of the heir; A donation may also be revoked at the instance of the donor
when the donee fails to comply with any of the condition which the
The value of the estate is to be considered at the time of the former imposed upon the latter.
birth, reappearance or adoption;
Exception : when the condition is immoral, illegal or
The action to reduce must be brought within 4 years, see : Art. impossible.
763. This action cannot be renounced.
Notes :
The article applies only to donation inter vivos and not only to :
a) donations propter nuptias ( which can be revoked only for Effect of non-fulfillment the donor has the choice of
causes enumerated by law ); b) onerous donations ( for these enforcing the condition by action for specific
are really contracts ); c) mortis causa ( for this is revocable for performance. The donee having bound himself to carry
any or no cause ). out the condition imposed by accepting the donation,
may be compelled with what has been stipulated.
A court action is necessary if the donee refuses to
X has no child. At the time he gave the donation of P10,000.00, return the property.
he had P100,000.00. Therefore after the donation, he had P90,000.00
left. Later, he adopted a minor child. At the same time he made the Art. 765. The donation may also be revoked at the instance of
adoption he had only P5,000.00 left. Should the donation be reduced? the donor, by reason of ingratitude in the following cases ;
If so, how much?
1. If the donee should commit some offense against the
Note : The value of the estate is to be considered at the time of person, the honor, or the property of the donor or of his wife or
the birth, reappearance or adoption; children under his parental authority;

Donation = P10,000.00 Note :

Property left at the
time of adoption = P 5,000.00 Offense does not mean a criminal offense, it may also
------------- include non-criminal offenses;
P15,000.00 No criminal conviction is necessary, and proof of the
offense by mere preponderance of evidence in a suit for
Legitimate = P15,000.00 x = P7,500.00 revocation is sufficient;

Since the value of the estate is only P5,000.00, the donation 2. If the donee imputes to the donor any criminal
must be reduced by P2,500.00. offense, or any act involving moral turpitude, even though
he should prove it, unless the crime of the act has been
See : Cruz vs CA, 140 SCRA 245 committed against the donee himself, his wife or children
under his authority;
3. If he unduly refuses him support when the donee is 1. The value of the estate is the value at the time of the
legally or morally bound to give support to the donor. donors death.
Net Estate + property left at the time of death less debts and
Notes : charges
plus value of donations.
- there is legal or moral ground;
- the refusal to support must be undue or unjustified 2. The donation may be considered inofficious , only in so far
- it is understood that the support given periodically should not as it may affect the legitime of the heirs;
the value of the thing donated. The moment this amount is 3. Since the inofficiousness of the donation cannot be
reached, the determined till after the donors death, it follows that in the
duty to support also ends. meantime, the donation is valid and ownership is
transmitted to the donee during the donors lifetime.
Art. 769

Prescriptive period for revocation by reason of ingratitude shall Prescriptive period :

be 1 year to be counted from the time the donor had knowledge of the
fact and it was possible for him to bring the action. The action to reduce or revoke may be brought within a period
of 5 years from the time of the donors death. See : Art. 1149, NCC
Art. 770
Who may bring action to reduce?
The action for revocation is not transmitted to the heirs of the
donor. 1. compulsory heirs of the donor;
2. heirs and successors-in-interests of the compulsory heirs.
Reason : Because the grounds for revocation are purely
personal to the

Exceptions :

a. when the action was already instituted but the donor

b. when the donor is killed by the donee;
c. the donor died without knowing the act of ingratitude.

Art. 771.

Inofficious donations :