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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

I. ARTICLES 774-803 (GENERAL PROVISIONS, WILLS, TESTAMENTARY CAPACITY)

1. Laura Alvarez, Flora Alvarez and Raymundo Alvarez v. Intermediate Appellate Court and Jesus
Yanes, Estelita Yanes, Antonio Yanes, Rosario Yanes, and Iluminado Yanes
G.R. No. 68053; May 7, 1990
FERNAN, C.J.:

FACTS:
A lot in Negros Occidental was registered under Aniceto Yanes. He left land among his children Rufino,
Felipe and Teodora. However, because of the war, Aniceto’s children left the property. When they came
back, they found out that it was occupied by Santiago, Fuentebella and Alvarez.

Since Fuentebella died, his wife, as administratix sold the lots to Rosendo Alvarez. Yanes’ heirs filed for
the return of the ownership and possession of the lots. During the pendency of the case, Alvarez sold it
to Dr. Rodolfo Sioson. The title had no adverse claim or lis pendens annotated at the back.

The CFI asked Alvarez to reconvey. But it was unsuccessful since it is already possessed by Sioson, a
purchaser in good faith. Hence, the Court asked the heirs of Alvarez to shoulder the liability by paying
damages

ISSUE:
Whether or not Rosendo’s liabilities may be passed to his heirs?

HELD:
Yes. Petitioners being the heirs of the late Rosendo Alvarez, they cannot escape the legal consequences
of their father’s transaction, which gave rise to the present claim for damages. That petitioners did not
inherit the property involved herein is of no moment because by legal fiction, the monetary equivalent
thereof devolved into the mass of their father’s hereditary estate, and we have ruled that the hereditary
assets are always liable in their totality for the payment of the debts of the estate.

It must, however, be made clear that petitioners are liable only to the extent of the value of their
inheritance. With this clarification and considering petitioners’ admission that there are other properties
left by the deceased which are sufficient to cover the amount adjudged in favor of private respondents,
we see no cogent reason to disturb the findings and conclusions of the Court of Appeals.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

2. Bienvenido, Estelita, Macario, Luis, Adelaide, Enriquita and Claudio, all surnamed, Gevero, v.
Intermediate Appellate Court and Del Monte Development Corporation
G.R. No. 77029; August 30, 1990
PARAS, J.:

FACTS:
Teodorica Babangha died long before World War II and was survived by her six children composed of
petitioners and Ricardo Gevero. Her heirs executed an Extra-Judicial Settlement and Partition of her
estate in 1966 consisting of two lots, among them was the property in litigation, Lot 2476.

In 1952, Lot 2476 was sold by Ricardo to Luis Lancero. Lancero then sold the property to pricate
respondent Del Monte Development Corp in 1964. Upon partition in 1966, Lot 2476-D, among others,
was adjudicated to Ricard. Del Monte filed an action to quiet title and/or annul the partition made by the
heirs of Teodorica insofar as the same prejudices the land which it acquired a portion of lot 2476.

One of the contentions of petitioners is that the interest of Teodorica was not included in the deed of sale
as it was intended to limit solely to Ricardos' proportionate share out of the undivided 1/2 of the area
pertaining to the six (6) brothers and sisters listed in the Title and that the Deed did not include the share
of Ricardo, as inheritance from Teodorica, because the Deed did not recite that she was deceased at the
time it was executed.

ISSUE:
Was Ricardo’s sale of his hereditary share in Teodorica’s estate valid?

HELD:
YES. The hereditary share in a decedents' estate is transmitted or vested immediately from the moment
of the death of the "causante" or predecessor in interest (Civil Code of the Philippines, Art. 777), and
there is no legal bar to a successor (with requisite contracting capacity) disposing of his hereditary share
immediately after such death, even if the actual extent of such share is not determined until the
subsequent liquidation of the estate.

Teodorica Babangha died long before World War II, hence, the rights to the succession were transmitted
from the moment of her death. Thus, when Ricardo sold his share over lot 2476 that share which he
inherited from Teodorica was also included unless expressly excluded in the deed of sale.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

3. Mariano B. Locsin, Julian J. Locsin, Jose B. Locsin, Aurea B. Locsin, Matilde L. Cordero,
Salvador B. Locsin and Manuel v. Del Rosario v. Court of Appeals, Jose Jaucian, Florentino
Jaucian, Mercedes Jaucian Arboleda, Heirs of Josefina J. Borja, Heirs of Eduardo Jaucian and
Heirs of Vicente Jaucian
G.R. No. 89783; February 19, 1992
NARVASA, C.J.:

FACTS:
Mariano executed a Will instituting his wife, Catalina, as the sole and universal heir of all his properties.
The spouses being childless, they had agreed that their properties, after both of them shall have died
should revert to their respective sides of the family, i.e., Mariano's properties would go to his "Locsin
relatives" (i.e., brothers and sisters or nephews and nieces), and those of Catalina to her "Jaucian
relatives." Mariano, before he died, relied on Catalina to carry out the terms of their compact, hence, 9
years after his death, Catalina began transferring, by sale, donation or assignment, Mariano's as well as
her own, properties to their respective nephews and nieces. Four years before her death, Catalina had
made a Will affirming and ratifying the transfers she had made during her lifetime in favor of her
husband's, and her own, relatives. Six years after Catalina's demise, some of her Jaucian nephews and
nieces (private respondents) who had already received their legacies and hereditary shares from her
estate, filed action to recover the properties which she had conveyed to the Locsins during her lifetime,
alleging that the conveyances were inofficious, without consideration, and intended solely to circumvent
the laws on succession.

ISSUE:
Are the conveyances made during the decedent’s lifetime valid?

HELD:
YES. The rights to a person's succession are transmitted from the moment of his death, and do not vest
in his heirs until such time. In this case, property which Catalina had transferred or conveyed to other
persons during her lifetime no longer formed part of her estate at the time of her death to which her heirs
may lay claim. Had she died intestate, only the property that remained in her estate at the time of her
death devolved to her legal heirs. Even if those transfers were, one and all, treated as donations, the
right arising under certain circumstances to impugn and compel the reduction or revocation of a
decedent's gifts inter vivos does not inure to the respondents since neither they nor the donees are
compulsory heirs. Thus, there is no basis for assuming an intention on the part of Catalina, in transferring
the properties she had received from her late husband to his nephews and nieces, an intent to circumvent
the law in violation of the private respondents' rights to her succession. Said respondents are not her
compulsory heirs, and it is not pretended that she had any such. Hence, there were no legitimes that
could conceivably be impaired by any transfer of her property during her lifetime. All that the respondents
had was an expectancy that in no wise restricted her freedom to dispose of even her entire estate.
Therefore, the conveyances made by Catalina during her lifetime are valid.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

4. Natalia Carpena Opulencia v. Court of Appeals, Aladin Simundac and Miguel Olivan
G.R. No. 125835; July 30, 1998
PANGANIBAN, J.:

FACTS:
Private respondents Simundac and Olivan and petitioner Opulencia entered into a Contract to Sell a
parcel of land in Sta. Rosa, Laguna (Lot No. 2125). P300,000.00 had already been received by petitioner
as down payment. The parties have knowledge that the property subject of the contract to sell is subject
of the probate proceedings of the testate estate of Demetrio Carpena, deceased father of the petitioner;
in fact, it was stated in the Contract to Sell that “the Seller (petitioner herein) suffers difficulties in her
living and has forced to offer the sale of the property, "which property was only one among the other
properties given to her by her late father," to anyone who can wait for complete clearance of the court on
the Last Will Testament of her father. However, despite demands, the petitioner failed to comply with her
obligations under the contract; hence, the private respondents filed an action for Specific Performance
with damages.

Petitioner’s defenses, among others, were that, at the time the contract was executed, the parties were
aware of the pendency of the probate proceeding and that the contract to sell was not approved by the
probate court. Hence, realizing the nullity of the contract the petitioner had offered to return the down
payment received from private respondents, but the latter refused to accept it. And that petitioner had
chosen to rescind the contract. She based her defense on Sec. 7, Rule 89 of the ROC contending that
"where the estate of the deceased person is already the subject of a testate or intestate proceeding, the
administrator cannot enter into any transaction involving it without prior approval of the Probate Court."

The trial court granted the Petitioner’s demurrer to evidence, which decision was reversed by the CA
declaring that the Contract to Sell is valid, subject to the outcome of the testate proceedings on Demetrio
Carpena's estate.

ISSUE:
Whether a contract to sell a real property involved in restate proceedings, made by an heir, valid and
binding without the approval of the probate court?

HELD:
YES, the Contract to Sell was entered into by the petitioner in her capacity as an heiress, not as an
executrix/administratrix of the estate, hence, such sale is valid.

As correctly ruled by the Court of Appeals, Section 7 of Rule 89 of the Rules of Court is not applicable,
because petitioner entered into the Contract to Sell in her capacity as an heiress, not as an executrix or
administratrix of the estate. In the contract, she represented herself as the "lawful owner" and seller of
the subject parcel of land. She also explained the reason for the sale to be "difficulties in her living"
conditions and consequent "need of cash." These representations clearly evince that she was not acting
on behalf of the estate under probate when she entered into the Contract to Sell.

Hereditary rights are vested in the heir/heirs from the moment of the decedent's death (Art. 777).
Petitioner, therefore, became the owner of her hereditary share the moment her father died. Thus, the
lack of judicial approval does not invalidate the Contract to Sell, because the petitioner has the
substantive right to sell the whole or a part of her share in the estate of her late father.

As to petitioner’s assertion that the administration of the estate will be prejudiced by the contract to sell,
the Court ruled that such contention is not convincing. The Contract to Sell stipulates that petitioner's

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

offer to sell is contingent on the "complete clearance of the court on the Last Will Testament of her father."
Consequently, although the Contract to Sell was perfected between the petitioner and private
respondents during the pendency of the probate proceedings, the consummation of the sale or the
transfer of ownership over the parcel of land to the private respondents is subject to the full payment of
the purchase price and to the termination and outcome of the testate proceedings. Therefore, there is no
basis for petitioner's apprehension that the Contract to Sell may result in a premature partition and
distribution of the properties of the estate. Indeed, it is settled that "the sale made by an heir of his share
in an inheritance, subject to the pending administration, in no wise stands in the way of such
administration.”
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

5. Emilio Emance v. Court of Appeals, Estate of Vicente Tabanao, Sherwin Tabanao, Vicente
Willam Tabanao, Janette Tabanao Deposoy, Vicenta May Tabanao Varela, Rosela Tabanao and
Vincent Tabana
G.R. No. 126334; November 23, 2001
YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioner Emilio Emance, Vicente Tabanao and Jacinto Divinagracia were partners in a business known
as Ma. Nelma Fishing Industry. Sometime in January 1986, they decided to dissolve their partnership
and executed an agreement of partition and distribution of the partnership properties among them,
consequent to Divinagracia’s withdrawal from the partnership. Throughout the existence of the
partnership, and even after Vicente Tabanao’s untimely demise, petitioner failed to submit to Tabanao’s
heirs any statement of assets and liabilities of the partnership, and to render accounting of the partnership
finances. Petitioner also reneged on his promise to turn over to Tabanao’s heirs the deceased’s 1/3 share
in the total assets of the partnership.

Consequently, Tabanao’s heirs, respondents herein, filed against petitioner an action for accounting,
payment of shares division of assets and damages. Petitioner asserts that the surviving spouse of Vicente
Tabanao has no legal capacity to sue since she was never appointed as administratrix or executrix of his
estate.

ISSUE:
In the absence of an appointment as administratrix or executrix of an estate, does a surviving spouse
(and other heirs) have legal capacity to sue on behalf of the estate of the deceased spouse?

HELD:
YES. A prior settlement of the estate, or even the appointment of the surviving spouse as executrix or
administratrix, is not necessary for any of the heirs to acquire legal capacity to sue. As successors who
stepped into the shoes of their decedent upon his death, they can commence any action originally
pertaining to the decedent.

She and her children are complainants in their own right as successors of Vicente Tabanao. From the
very moment of the death of the decedent, his rights insofar as the partnership was concerned were
transmitted to his heirs, for rights to the succession are transmitted from the moment of the death of the
decedent (CIVIL CODE, Art. 777). Whatever claims and rights the deceased had against the partnership
and petitioner were transmitted to his heirs by operation of law, more particularly by succession, which
is a mode of acquisition by virtue of which the property, rights and obligations to the extent of the value
of the inheritance of a person are transmitted. Respondents became owners of their respective hereditary
shares from the moment Vicente Tabanao died.

From the moment of his death, his rights as a partner and to demand fulfillment of petitioner’s obligations
were transmitted to respondents. They, therefore, had the capacity to sue and seek the court’s
intervention to compel petitioner to fulfill his obligations.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

6. Johnny S. Rabadilla v. Court of Appeals and Maria Marlena Coscoluella y Belleza Villacarlos
G.R. No. 113725; June 29, 2000
PURISIMA, J.:

FACTS:
In a Codicil appended to the Last Will and Testament of testatrix Aleja Belleza, Dr. Jorge Rabadilla was
instituted as a devisee a parcel of land. Said codicil provides, among others, that: a) “Jorge Rabadilla
shall have the obligation until he dies, every year to give to Maria Marlina Coscolluela y Belleza,75 piculs
of Export sugar and 25 piculs of Domestic sugar, until the said Maria Marlina dies”; b) “Should Jorge
Rabadilla die, his heir to whom he shall give the lot, shall have the obligation to still give yearly, the sugar
as specified in the Fourth paragraph of his testament, to Maria Marlina on the month of December of
each year”; and c) “in the event that the one to whom I have left and bequeathed, and his heir shall later
sell, lease, mortgage this said Lot, the buyer, lessee, mortgagee, shall have also the obligation to respect
and deliver yearly 100 piculs of sugar to Maria Marlina, on each month of December, 75 piculs of Export
and 25 piculs of Domestic, until Maria Marlina shall die, lastly should the buyer, lessee or the mortgagee
of this lot, not have respected my command in this my addition (Codicil), Maria Marlina shall immediately
seize the land from my heir and the latter's heirs, and shall turn it over to my near desendants, and the
latter shall then have the obligation to give the 100 piculs of sugar until Maria Marlina shall die.”

Maria Marlena brought a complaint against the above-mentioned heirs of Dr. Jorge Rabadilla, to enforce
the provisions of subject Codicil. Petitioner theorizes that Article 882 of the New Civil Code on modal
institutions is not applicable because what the testatrix intended was a substitution - Dr. Jorge Rabadilla
was to be substituted by the testatrix's near descendants should there be noncompliance with the
obligation to deliver the piculs of sugar to private respondent.

ISSUE:
Whether or not there was a modal institution

HELD:
Yes. The institution of an heir in the manner prescribed in Article 882 is what is known in the law of
succession as an institucion sub modo or a modal institution. In a modal institution, the testator states (1)
the object of the institution, (2) the purpose or application of the property left by the testator, or (3) the
charge imposed by the testator upon the heir. A "mode" imposes an obligation upon the heir or legatee
but it does not affect the efficacy of his rights to the succession. On the other hand, in a conditional
testamentary disposition, the condition must happen or be fulfilled in order for the heir to be entitled to
succeed the testator. The condition suspends but does not obligate; and the mode obligates but does
not suspend. To some extent, it is similar to a resolutory condition.

From the provisions of the Codicil litigated upon, it can be gleaned unerringly that the testatrix intended
that subject property be inherited by Dr. Rabadilla. It is likewise clearly worded that the testatrix imposed
an obligation on the said instituted heir and his successors-in-interest to deliver one hundred piculs of
sugar to the herein private respondent, Maria Marlena, during the lifetime of the latter. However, the
testatrix did not make Dr. Rabadilla's inheritance and the effectivity of his institution as a devisee,
dependent on the performance of the said obligation. It is clear, though, that should the obligation be not
complied with, the property shall be turned over to the testatrix's near descendants. The manner of
institution of Dr. Rabadilla under subject Codicil is evidently modal in nature because it imposes a charge
upon the instituted heir without, however, affecting the efficacy of such institution.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

7. Belinda Taredo, for herself and in representation of her brothers and sisters, and Teofila
Corpuz Tanedo, representing her minor daughter Verna Tanedo v. The Court of Appeals,
Spouses Ricardo M. Taredo and Teresita Barera Taredo
G.R. No. 104482; January 22, 1996
PANGANIBAN, J.:

FACTS:
On October 20, 1962, Lazardo Taedo executed a notarized deed of absolute sale in favor of his eldest
brother, Ricardo Taedo, and the latters wife, Teresita Barera, private respondents herein, whereby he
conveyed to the latter in consideration of P1,500.00, one hectare of whatever share I shall have over Lot
No. 191 of the cadastral survey of Gerona, Province of Tarlac and covered by Title T-l3829 of the Register
of Deeds of Tarlac, the said property being his future inheritance from his parents. Upon the death of his
father Matias, Lazaro executed an Affidavit of Conformity dated February 28, 1980 to re-affirm, the sale
made in 1962.

On January 13, 1981, Lazaro executed another notarized deed of sale in favor of private respondents
covering his undivided ONE TWELVE (1/12) of a parcel of land known as Lot 191. He acknowledged
therein his receipt of P 10,000.00 as consideration therefor.

In February 1981, Ricardo learned that Lazaro sold the same property to his children, petitioners herein,
through a deed of sale dated December 29, 1980. On June 7, 1982, private respondents recorded the
Deed of Sale in their favor in the Registry of Deeds.

Petitioners on July 16, 1982 filed a complaint for rescission (plus damages) of the deeds of sale executed
by Lazaro in favor of private respondents covering the property inherited by Lazaro from his father.

Petitioners claimed that their father, Lazaro, executed an Absolute Deed of Sale dated December 29,
1980, conveying to his ten children his allotted portion under the extrajudicial partition executed by the
heirs of Matias, which deed included the land in litigation (Lot 191).

Petitioners also presented in evidence: (1) a private writing purportedly prepared and signed by Matias
dated December 28, 1978, stating that it was his desire that whatever inheritance Lazaro would receive
from him should be given to his (Lazaros) children; (2) a typewritten document dated March 10, 1979
signed by Lazaro in the presence of two witnesses, wherein he confirmed that he would voluntarily abide
by the wishes of his father, Matias, to give to his (Lazaros) children all the property he would inherit from
the latter; and (3) a letter dated January 1, 1980 of Lazaro to his daughter, Carmela, stating that his share
in the extrajudicial settlement of the estate of his father was intended for his children, petitioners herein.

Private respondents, however presented in evidence a Deed of Revocation of a Deed of Sale dated
March 12, 1981, wherein Lazaro revoked the sale in favor of petitioners for the reason that it was
simulated or fictitious - without any consideration whatsoever.

Shortly after the case a quo was filed, Lazaro executed a sworn statement which virtually repudiated the
contents of the Deed of Revocation of a Deed of Sale and the Deed of Sale in favor of private
respondents.

However, Lazaro testified that he sold the property to Ricardo, and that it was a lawyer who induced him
to execute a deed of sale in favor of his children after giving him five pesos (P5.00) to buy a drink.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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The trial court decided in favor of private respondents, holding that petitioners failed to adduce a
preponderance of evidence to support (their) claim. On appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the decision
of the trial court, ruling that the Deed of Sale dated January 13, 1981 was valid and that its registration
in good faith vested title in said respondents.

ISSUE:
Is the sale of a future inheritance valid?

HELD:
The sale made in 1962 involving future inheritance is not really at issue here. In context, the assailed
Decision conceded it may be legally correct that a contract of sale of anticipated future inheritance is null
and void.

But to remove all doubts, we hereby categorically rule that, pursuant to Article 1347 of the Civil Code,
(n)o contract may be entered into upon a future inheritance except in cases expressly authorized by law.

Consequently, said contract made in 1962 is not valid and cannot be the source of any right nor the
creator of any obligation between the parties.

Hence, the affidavit of conformity dated February 28, 1980, insofar as it sought to validate or ratify the
1962 sale, is also useless and, in the words of the respondent Court, suffers from the same infirmity.
Even private respondents in their memorandum concede this.

However, the documents that are critical to the resolution of this case are: (a) the deed of sale of January
13, 1981 in favor of private respondents covering Lazaros undivided inheritance of one-twelfth (1/12)
share in Lot No. 191, which was subsequently registered on June 7, 1982; and (b) the deed of sale dated
December 29, 1980 in favor of petitioners covering the same property. These two documents were
executed after the death of Matias (and his spouse) and after a deed of extrajudicial settlement of his
(Matias) estate was executed, thus vesting in Lazaro actual title over said property. In other words, these
dispositions, though conflicting, were no longer infected with the infirmities of the 1962 sale.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

8. Spouses Virgilio F. Santos & Esperanza Lati Santos, et. al. v. Spouses Jose Lumbao and
Proserfina Lumbao
G.R. No. 169129; March 28, 2007
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.:

FACTS:
On two separate occasions during her lifetime, Rita sold to respondents Spouses Lumbao the subject
property which is a part of her share in the estate of her deceased mother who died intestate. Rita sold
her inchoate share in her mother’s estate through a document denominated as "Bilihan ng Lupa."
Respondents Spouses claimed the execution of the aforesaid document was witnessed by petitioners
Virgilio and Tadeo, as shown by their signatures affixed therein.

After acquiring the subject property, respondents Spouses Lumbao took actual possession thereof and
erected thereon a house, which they have been occupying as exclusive owners up to the present. They
made several verbal demands upon Rita, during her lifetime, and thereafter upon herein petitioners
(heirs), for them to execute the necessary documents to effect the issuance of a separate title in their
favor insofar as the subject property is concerned. They also alleged that prior to her death, Rita informed
respondent Proserfina Lumbao she could not deliver the title to the subject property because the entire
property inherited by her and her co-heirs from Maria had not yet been partitioned.

Spouses Lumbao claimed that petitioners, acting fraudulently and in conspiracy with one another,
executed a Deed of Extrajudicial Settlement, adjudicating and partitioning among themselves and the
other heirs, the estate left by Maria, which included the subject property already sold to respondents
Spouses Lumbao. Thus, they sent a formal demand letter to petitioners but despite receipt of such
demand letter, petitioners still failed and refused to reconvey the subject property to the respondents
Spouses Lumbao. Consequently, the latter filed a Complaint for Reconveyance with Damages before the
RTC of Pasig City.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the heirs are bound by contracts entered into by their predecessors-in-interest, that would
warrant the reconveyance of the property

HELD:
Yes. The general rule that heirs are bound by contracts entered into by their predecessors -in-interest
applies in the present case. Article 131132 of the NCC is the basis of this rule. It is clear from the said
provision that whatever rights and obligations the decedent have over the property were transmitted to
the heirs by way of succession, a mode of acquiring the property, rights and obligations of the decedent
to the extent of the value of the inheritance of the heirs. Thus, the heirs cannot escape the legal
consequence of a transaction entered into by their predecessor-in-interest because they have inherited
the property subject to the liability affecting their common ancestor. Being heirs, there is privity of interest
between them and their deceased mother. They only succeed to what rights their mother had and what
is valid and binding against her is also valid and binding as against them. The death of a party does not
excuse nonperformance of a contract which involves a property right and the rights and obligations
thereunder pass to the personal representatives of the deceased. Similarly, nonperformance is not
excused by the death of the party when the other party has a property interest in the subject matter of
the contract.

In the end, despite the death of the petitioners’ mother, they are still bound to comply with the provisions
of the "Bilihan ng Lupa." Consequently, they must reconvey to herein respondents Spouses Lumbao the
107-square meter lot which they bought from Rita, petitioners’ mother. And as correctly ruled by the

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
10
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

appellate court, petitioners must pay respondents Spouses Lumbao attorney’s fees and litigation
expenses for having been compelled to litigate and incur expenses to protect their interest.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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9. National Housing Authority v. Segunda Almeida, Court of Appeals, and RTC of San Pedro,
Laguna, Br. 31
G.R. No. 162784; June 22, 2007
PUNO, C.J.:

FACTS:
The right to repurchase the subject lots was awarded to Margarita Herrera in 1959. Margarita Herrera
had two children: Beatriz Herrera-Mercado (the mother of private respondent) and Francisca Herrera.
Beatriz Herrera-Mercado predeceased her mother and left heirs. Margarita Herrera passed away.

Francisca Herrera filed an application with the NHA to purchase the same lots submitting therewith a
copy of the "Sinumpaang Salaysay" executed by her mother. NHA granted the application made by
Francisca Herrera, holding that: Margarita Herrera executed a "Sinumpaang Salaysay" whereby she
waived or transferred all her rights and interest over the lots in question in favor of the Francisca; and
Francisca had paid the lots in question in full. The NHA Resolution was affirmed by the Office of the
President

Francisca Herrera then died. So, NHA executed several deeds of sale in favor of the heirs of Francisca
Herrera and titles were issued in their favor. Thereafter, the heirs of Francisca Herrera directed Segunda
Mercado-Almeida to leave the premises that she was occupying.

Private respondent Segunda Mercado-Almeida sought the cancellation of the titles issued in favor of the
heirs of Francisca. RTC declared the deeds of sale executed by NHA in favor of Herrera's heirs null and
void. It ruled that the "Sinumpaang Salaysay" was not an assignment of rights but a disposition of property
which shall take effect upon death. It then held that the said document must first be submitted to probate
before it can transfer property.CA affirmed the decision of the RTC.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the award of the subject lots to the heirs of Francisca by virtue of the Sinumpaang
Salaysay is valid

HELD:
No. The award of the subject lots to the heirs of Francisca is invalid. When the petitioner received the
"Sinumpaang Salaysay," it should have noted that the effectivity of the said document commences at the
time of death of the author of the instrument; in her words "sakaling ako'y bawian na ng Dios ng aking
buhay…" Hence, in such period, all the interests of the person should cease to be hers and shall be in
the possession of her estate until they are transferred to her heirs by virtue of Article 774 of the Civil Code
which provides that:

Art. 774. Succession is a mode of acquisition by virtue of which the property, rights and obligations
to the extent of the value of the inheritance, of a person are transmitted through his death to
another or others either by his will or by operation of law.

By considering the document, petitioner NHA should have noted that the original applicant has already
passed away. Margarita Herrera passed away on October 27, 1971. The NHA issued its resolution on
February 5, 1986. The NHA gave due course to the application made by Francisca Herrera without
considering that the initial applicant's death would transfer all her property, rights and obligations to the
estate including whatever interest she has or may have had over the disputed properties. To the extent
of the interest that the original owner had over the property, the same should go to her estate. Margarita

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
12
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Herrera had an interest in the property and that interest should go to her estate upon her demise so as
to be able to properly distribute them later to her heirs—in accordance with a will or by operation of law.

The death of Margarita Herrera does not extinguish her interest over the property. Margarita Herrera had
an existing Contract to Sell with NHA as the seller. Upon Margarita Herrera's demise, this Contract to
Sell was neither nullified nor revoked. This Contract to Sell was an obligation on both parties—Margarita
Herrera and NHA. Obligations are transmissible. Margarita Herrera's obligation to pay became
transmissible at the time of her death either by will or by operation of law.

If we sustain the position of the NHA that this document is not a will, then the interests of the decedent
should transfer by virtue of an operation of law and not by virtue of a resolution by the NHA. For as it
stands, NHA cannot make another contract to sell to other parties of a property already initially paid for
by the decedent. Such would be an act contrary to the law on succession and the law on sales and
obligations.

When the original buyer died, the NHA should have considered the estate of the decedent as the next
"person" likely to stand in to fulfill the obligation to pay the rest of the purchase price. The opposition of
other heirs to the repurchase by Francisca Herrera should have put the NHA on guard as to the award
of the lots. Further, the Decision in the said Civil Case No. B-1263 (questioning the Deed of Self-
Adjudication) which rendered the deed therein null and void should have alerted the NHA that there are
other heirs to the interests and properties of the decedent who may claim the property after a testate or
intestate proceeding is concluded. The NHA therefore acted arbitrarily in the award of the lots.

We need not delve into the validity of the will. The issue is for the probate court to determine. We affirm
the Court of Appeals and the Regional Trial Court which noted that it has an element of testamentary
disposition where (1) it devolved and transferred property; (2) the effect of which shall transpire upon the
death of the instrument maker.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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10. People of the Philippines v. Gloria Umali and Suzeth Umali


G.R. No. 84450; February 4, 1991
MEDIALDEA, J.:

FACTS:
Francisco Manalo was charged with violation of the Dangerous Drug Act. Aside from said case, he was
likewise facing other charges such as concealment of deadly weapon and other crimes against property.
The police officers sought the help of Francisco to identify the source of the marijuana. With the affidavit
of Francisco supported by the 2 foils of marijuana obtained from appellant Gloria Umali, the police officers
were able to obtain a search warrant. The search resulted in the confiscation of a can of milo, containing
16 foils of dried marijuana leaves.

Umali was charged and thereafter convicted of violation of the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972. Meanwhile,
Manalo was charged of having in his possession Indian Hemp. Hence, this appeal.

The appellant alleged that witness Francisco Manalo is not reputed to be trustworthy and reliable and
that his words should not be taken on its face value. Furthermore, she stressed that said witness has
several charges in court and because of his desire to have some of his cases dismissed, he was likely to
tell falsehood.

ISSUE:
Should the testimony of Francisco be accorded full credence?

HELD:
Yes. Rule 130, Section 20 of the Revised Rules of Court provides that: Except as provided in the next
succeeding section, all persons who can perceive, and perceiving can make known their perception to
others may be witnesses. Religious or political belief, interest in the outcome of the case, or conviction
of a crime unless otherwise provided by law, shall not be a ground for disqualification.

The phrase "conviction of a crime unless otherwise provided by law" takes into account Article 821 of the
Civil Code which states that persons convicted of falsification of a document, perjury or false testimony"
are disqualified from being witnesses to a will."

Since the witness Francisco Manalo is not convicted of any of the above-mentioned crimes to disqualify
him as a witness and this case does not involve the probate of a will, We rule that the fact that said
witness is facing several criminal charges when he testified did not in any way disqualify him as a witness.
Hence, in the absence of any evidence that witness Francisco Manalo was actuated by improper motive,
his testimony must be accorded full credence.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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II. ARTICLES 804-824 (FORMS OF WILLS, WITNESSES TO WILLS)

11. Paula Conde v. Roman Abaya


G.R. No. 4275; March 23, 1909
ARELLANO, C.J.:

FACTS:
Paula Conde, mother of Jose and Teopista Cond who were alleged to be the natural children of Casiano
Abaya, moved for settlement of the estate of Casiano. Paula was then appointed as the administrator of
the said estate. Roman Abaya, brother of late Casiano Abaya, came forward and opposed said
appointment and claimed it for himself as being the nearest relative of the deceased.

Thereafter, the lower court held that an ordinary action for the acknowledgment of natural children under
articles 135 and 137 of the Civil Code, might be brought in special probate proceedings. It also
pronounced that after the death of a person claimed to be an unacknowledged natural child, the mother
of such presumed natural child, as heir to the latter, may bring an action to enforce the acknowledgment
of her deceased child in accordance with articles 135 and 137 of the Civil Code.

ISSUE:
Whether or not a right of action for acknowledgement of a natural child may be transmitted by inheritance
to his heirs

HELD:
NO. The power to transmit the right of such action by the natural child to his descendants cannot be
sustained under the law, and still less to his mother.

The right of action pertaining to the child to claim his legitimacy is in all respects superior to that of the
child who claims acknowledgment as a natural child. And it is evident that the right of action to claim his
legitimacy is not one of those rights which the legitimate child may transmit by inheritance to his heirs; it
forms no part of the component rights of his inheritance. If it were so, there would have been no necessity
to establish its transmissibility to heirs as an exception in the terms and conditions of article 118 of the
code. So that, in order that it may constitute a portion of the child's inheritance, it is necessary that the
conditions and the terms contained in article 118 shall be present, since without them, the right that the
child held during his lifetime, being personal and exclusive in principle, and therefore, as a general rule
not susceptible of transmission, would and should have been extinguished by his death. Therefore, where
no express provision like that of article 118 exists, the right of action for the acknowledgment of a natural
child is, in principle and without exception, extinguished by his death, and cannot be transmitted as a
portion of the inheritance of the deceased child.

On the other hand, it said right of action formed a part of the child's inheritance, it would be necessary to
establish the doctrine that the right to claim such an acknowledgment from the presumed natural father
and from his heirs is an absolute right of the heirs of the child, not limited by certain circumstances as in
the case of the heirs of a legitimate child; and if it is unreasonable to compare a natural child with a
legitimate one to place the heirs of a natural child and his inheritance on a better footing than those of a
legitimate child would not only be unreasonable, but, as stated in one of the above citations, most absurd
and illegal in the present state of the law and in accordance with the general principles thereof.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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12. Cornelio Pamplona v. Vivencio Moreto


G.R. No. L-33187; March 31, 1980
GUERRERO, J.:

FACTS:
Flaviano Moreto and Monica Maniega were husband and wife. During their marriage, they acquired
several adjacent lots and spouses begot during their marriage six (6) children. Thereafter, Monica
Maniega died intestate. More than six (6) years after the death of his wife Monica Maniega, Flaviano
Moreto, without the consent of the heirs of his said deceased wife Monica, and before any liquidation of
the conjugal partnership of Monica and Flaviano could be effected, executed in favor of Geminiano
Pamplona, married to defendant Apolonia Onte, the deed of absolute.

Spouses Pamplona and Onte constructed their house on the eastern part of lot. Shortly thereafter, son
of the spouses also built his house within lot about one meter from its boundary with the adjoining lot.
Thereafter Flaviano Moreto died intestate. The plaintiffs demanded on the defendants to vacate the
premises on the ground that Flaviano Moreto had no right to sell the lot which he sold to Geminiano
Pamplona as the same belongs to the conjugal partnership of Flaviano and his deceased wife and the
latter was already dead when the sale was executed without the consent of the plaintiffs who are the
heirs of Monica.

The spouses Geminiano Pamplona and Apolonia Onte refused to vacate the premises occupied by them
and hence, this suit was instituted by the heirs of Monica Maniega seeking for the declaration of the nullity
of the deed of sale.

The defendants claim that the sale made by Flaviano Moreto in their favor is valid as the lot sold is
registered in the name of Flaviano Moreto and they are purchasers believing in good faith that the vendor
was the sole owner of the lot sold.

ISSUE:
Whether or not respondents, as heirs of Moreto and Maniega, required to make the delivery of the subject
lot

HELD:
Yes. Under Article 776, New Civil Code, the inheritance which private respondents received from their
deceased parents and/or predecessors-in-interest included all the property rights and obligations which
were not extinguished by their parents' death. Accordingly, to the private respondents is transmitted the
obligation to deliver in full ownership the whole area of 781 sq. meters to the petitioners (which was the
original obligation of their predecessor Flaviano Moreto) and not only one-half thereof. Private
respondents must comply with said obligation.

Equity commands that the private respondents, the successors of both the deceased spouses, Flaviano
Moreto and Monica Maniega be not allowed to impugn the sale executed by Flaviano Moreto who
indisputably received a sufficient consideration and which he, including his children, benefitted from the
same. Moreover, as the heirs of both Monica Maniega and Flaviano Moreto, private respondents are
duty-bound to comply with the provisions of Articles 1458 and 1495, Civil Code, which is the obligation
of the vendor of the property of delivering and transfering the ownership of the whole property sold, which
is transmitted on his death to his heirs, the herein private respondents.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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13. Bella Guerrero v. Resurreccion Bihis


G.R. No. 174144; April 17, 2007
CORONA, J.:

FACTS:
Decedent Felisa Tamio de Buenaventura died leaving two daughters – petitioner Bella Guerrero and
respondent Resurreccion Bihis. Guerrero filed a petition for the probate of the last will and testament of
the decedent alleging, among others, that she was named as executrix in the decedent's will. Bihis
opposed Guerrero’s petition on the ground that the will was not executed and attested as required by
law. Petitioner admits that the will was acknowledged by the testatrix and the witnesses at the testatrix's
residence in Quezon City before Atty. Directo and that, at that time, Atty. Directo was a commissioned
notary public for and in Caloocan City.

ISSUE:
Did the will "acknowledged" by the testatrix and the instrumental witnesses before a notary public acting
outside the place of his commission satisfy the requirement under Article 806 of the Civil Code?

HELD:
No. One of the formalities required by law in connection with the execution of a notarial will is that it must
be acknowledged before a notary public by the testator and the witnesses. This formal requirement is
one of the indispensable requisites for the validity of a will. In other words, a notarial will that is not
acknowledged before a notary public by the testator and the instrumental witnesses is void and cannot
be accepted for probate. An acknowledgment is the act of one who has executed a deed in going before
some competent officer and declaring it to be his act or deed. In the case of a notarial will, that competent
officer is the notary public.

A notary public’s commission is the grant of authority in his favor to perform notarial acts. It is iss ued
“within and for” a particular territorial jurisdiction and the notary public’s authority is co-extensive with it.
In other words, a notary public is authorized to perform notarial acts, including the taking of
acknowledgments, within that territorial jurisdiction only. Outside the place of his commission, he is bereft
of power to perform any notarial act; he, is not a notary public. Any notarial act outside the limits of his
jurisdiction has no force and effect. As this Court categorically pronounced in Tecson v. Tecson, 61 Phil.
781 (1935): An acknowledgment taken outside the territorial limits of the officer’s jurisdiction is void as if
the person taking it were wholly without official character.

The acknowledgment of a notarial will coerces the testator and the instrumental witnesses to declare
before an officer of the law, the notary public, that they executed and subscribed the will as their own
free act or deed. Such declaration is under oath and under pain of perjury, thus paving the way for the
criminal prosecution of persons who participate in the execution of spurious wills, or those executed
without the free consent of the testator. It also provides a further degree of assurance that the testator is
of a certain mindset in making the testamentary dispositions to the persons instituted as heirs or
designated as devisees or legatees in the will. Acknowledgment can only be made before a competent
officer, that is, a lawyer duly commissioned as a notary public.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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14. Estate of the Deceased Paulino Diancin, Teopista Dolar v. Fidel Diancin, et al.
G.R. No. L-33365; December 20, 1930
MALCOLM, J.:

FACTS:
The will of the deceased Paulino Diancin was subject of probate in this case. It was alleged to have been
executed by Paulino Diancin at Dumangas, Iloilo, on November 13, 1927. A thumbmark appears at the
end of the will and on the left hand margin of each of its pages. The witnesses to the will were the same
Pedro Diamante, Inocentes Deocampo, and Juan Dominado. During trial, for comparative purposes, a
document of sale (Exh. 8) containing an admittedly genuine thumbmark of Paulino Diancin, was
presented. On one fact only were the opposing witnesses agreed, and this was that the ink used to make
the thumbmarks on the will was of the ordinary type which blurred the characteristics of the marks,
whereas the thumbmark on Exhibit 8 was formed clearly by the use of the special ink required for this
purpose.

The will was denied probate in the Court of First Instance of Iloilo on the sole ground that the thumbmarks
appearing thereon were not the thumbmarks of the testator. Hence, this petition.

ISSUE:
Is the requirement that the will shall be "signed" satisfied by the testator's or testatrix' thumbmark?

HELD:
YES. The requirement of the statute that the will shall be "signed" is satisfied not only the customary
written signature but also by the testator's or testatrix' thumbmark. Expert testimony as to the identity of
thumbmarks or fingerprints is of course admissible. The method of identification of fingerprints is a
science requiring close study. Where thumb impressions are blurred and many of the characteristic marks
far from clear, thus rendering it difficult to trace the features enumerated by experts as showing the
identity or lack of identity of the impressions, the court is justified in refusing to accept the opinions of
alleged experts and in substituting its own opinion that a distinct similarity in some respects between the
admittedly genuine thumbmark and the questioned thumbmarks, is evident.

In addition, the three instrumental witnesses united in testifying concerning the circumstances
surrounding the execution of the will. It was stated that in addition to the testator and themselves, on
other person, Diosdado Dominado, was present. He was later placed on the witness stand by the
proponent on rebuttal, and thereupon declared positively that he was the one who prepared the will for
the signature of Paulino Diancin; that the thumbmarks appearing on the will were those of Paulino
Diancin, and that he saw Paulino Diancin make these impressions. The testimony of a witness called by
both parties is worthy of credit.

We reach the very definite conclusion that the document presented for probate as the last will of the
deceased Paulino Diancin was, in truth, his will, and that the thumbmarks appearing thereon were the
thumbmarks of the testator.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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15. Yap Tua v. Yap Ca Kuan and Yap Ca Kuan


G.R. No. 6845; September 1, 1914
JOHNSON, J.:

FACTS:
Perfecto Gabriel, representing the petitioner, Yap Tua, presented a petition in the Court of First Instance
of the city of Manila, asking that the will of Tomasa Elizaga Yap Caong be admitted to probate.
Accompanying said petition and attached thereto was the alleged will of the deceased. The will was
signed by the deceased, as well as Anselmo Zacarias, Severo Tabora, and Timoteo Paez.

Gabriel La O, as guardian ad litem of Yap Ca Kuan and Yap Ca Llu, appeared in court and presented a
motion in which he alleged that the will which was admitted to probate by order of the court was null, for
the following reasons:
(a) Because the same had not been authorized nor signed by the witnesses as the law prescribes.
(b) Because at the time of the execution of the will, the said Tomasa Elizaga Yap Caong was not then
mentally capacitated to execute the same, due to her sickness.
(c) Because her signature to the will had been obtained through fraud and illegal influence upon the part
of persons who were to receive a benefit from the same, and because the said Tomasa Elizaga Yap
Caong had no intention of executing the same.
Allegedly, Tomasa was in another room different from that in which the will was written and the will was
not written in the presence of Tomasa.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the requirement of having the will signed by the testator in the presence of the witnesses
was met

HELD:
Yes. A plan of the room or rooms in which the will was signed was presented as proof and it was shown
that there was but one room; that one part of the room was one or two steps below the floor of the other;
that the table on which the witnesses signed the will was located upon the lower floor of the room. It was
also shown that from the bed in which Tomasa was lying, it was possible for her to see the table on which
the witnesses signed the will. While the rule is absolute that one who makes a will must sign the same in
the presence of the witnesses and that the witnesses must sign in the presence of each other, as well as
in the presence of the one making the will, yet, nevertheless, the actual seeing of the signatures made is
not necessary. It is sufficient if the signatures are made where it is possible for each of the necessary
parties, if they desire to see, may see the signatures placed upon the will.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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16. Eutiquia Avera v. Marino Garcia, et. al.


G.R. No. 15566; September 14, 1921
STREET, J.:

FACTS:
Eutiquia Avera (proponent) instituted an action for probate of the will of one Esteban Garcia. Mariano
Garcia and Juan Rodriguez (objectors) contested the same. In the hearing, the proponent of the will
introduced one of the three attesting witnesses who testified that the will was executed with all necessary
external formalities, and that the testator was at the time in full possession of disposing faculties. Upon
the latter point the witness was corroborated by the person who wrote the will at the request of the
testator. Two of the attesting witnesses were not introduced, nor was their absence accounted for by the
proponent of the will.

The attorney for the opposition introduced a single witness whose testimony tended to show, in a vague
and indecisive manner, that at the time the will was made the testator was so debilitated as to be unable
to comprehend what he was about.

Trial judge found that the testator at the time of the making of the will was of sound mind and disposing
memory and that the will had been properly executed. He accordingly admitted the will to probate. Hence,
this appeal by the objectors.

ISSUES:
1. Can a will be admitted to probate, where opposition is made, upon the proof of a single attesting
witness, without producing or accounting for the absence of the other two?
2. Whether or not the will is valid even if the signature of the testator and of the three attesting witnesses
are written on the right margin of each page of the will instead of the left margin

HELD:
1. NO, while it is undoubtedly true that an uncontested will may be proved by the testimony of only one
of the three attesting witnesses, nevertheless when a contest is instituted, all of the attesting witnesses
must be examined, if alive and within reach of the process of the court.

In the present case, no explanation was made at the trial as to why all three of the attesting witnesses
were not produced, but the probable reason is found in the fact that, although the petition for the probate
of this will had been pending from December 21, 1917, until the date set for the hearing, which was April
5, 1919, no formal contest was entered until the very day set for the hearing; and it is probable that the
attorney for the proponent, believing in good faith the probate would not be contested, repaired to the
court with only one of the three attesting witnesses at hand, and upon finding that the will was contes ted,
incautiously permitted the case to go to proof without asking for a postponement of the trial in order that
he might produce all the attesting witnesses.

However, the objectors did not raise in the lower court such question, hence it cannot be considered first
time on appeal.

2. YES, by the mode of signing adopted, every page and provision of the will is authenticated and guarded
from possible alteration in exactly the same degree that it would have been protected by being signed in
the left margin; and the resources of casuistry could be exhausted without discovering the slightest
difference between the consequences of affixing the signatures in one margin or the other.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

It is true that the Section 618 of Code of Civil Procedure says that the testator and the instrumental
witnesses shall sign their names on the left margin of each and every page; and it is undeniable that the
general doctrine is to the effect that all statutory requirements as to the execution of wills must be fully
complied with. However, some details at times creep into legislative enactments which are so trivial it
would be absurd to suppose that the Legislature could have attached any decisive importance to them.
The provision to the effect that the signatures of the testator and witnesses shall be written on the left
margin of each page — rather than on the right margin — seems to be this character. So far as concerns
the authentication of the will, and of every part thereof, it can make no possible difference whether the
names appear on the left or on the right margin, provided they are on one or the other.

In this case, where ingenuity could not suggest any possible prejudice to any person, as attendant upon
the actual deviation from the letter of the law, such deviation must be considered too trivial to invalidate
the instrument.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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17. Filomena Nayve v. Leona Mojal and Luciana Aguilar


G.R. No. 21755; December 29, 1924.
ROMUALDEZ, J.:

FACTS:
This is a proceeding for the probate of the will of the deceased Antonio Mojal, instituted by his surviving
spouse, Filomena Nayve. The probate is opposed by Leona Mojal and Luciana Aguilar, sister and niece,
respectively, of the deceased.

The will in question is composed of four sheets with written matter on only one side of each, that is, four
pages written on four sheets. The four sides or pages containing written matter are paged" "Pag. 1," Pag.
2," "Pag. 3,", "Pag. 4," successively. Each of the first two sides or pages, which was used, was signed
by the testator and the three witnesses on the margin, left side of the reader. On the third page actually
used, the signatures of the three witnesses appear also on the margin, left side of the reader, but the
signature of the testator is not on the margin, but about the middle of the page, at the end of the will and
before the attestation clause. On the fourth page, the signatures of the witnesses do not appear on the
margin, but at the bottom of the attestation clause, it being the signature of the testator that is on the
margin, left side of the reader.

Respondents contend the following defects: (a) the fact of not having been signed by the testator and the
witnesses on each and every sheet on the left margin; (b) the fact of the sheets of the document not
being paged with letters; (c) the fact that the attestation clause does not state the number of sheets or
pages actually used of the will; and (d) the fact that the testator does not appear to have signed all the
sheets in the presence of the three witnesses, and the latter to have attested and signed all the sheets
in the presence of the testator and of each other, make the will void.

The CFI overruled the above objections to the will and ordered the probate thereof. Hence, this appeal.

ISSUES:
1. Does the fact of not having signed the pages of the will on the left margin by the testator and the
witnesses render the will void?
2. Does the fact that the sheets of the document not being paged with letters render the will invalid?
3. Does the fact of omission of number of sheets or pages actually used in the attestation clause of the
will in the present case render the same void?
4. Does the will lack the essential portion of the attestation clause that the testator appears to have
signed on all the sheets of the will in the presence of the three witnesses, and the latter to have
attested and signed in all the sheets in the presence of the testator and of each other?

HELD:
1. NO. Applying that doctrine in Avera v. Garcia and Rodriguez (42 Phil., 145) to the instant case, we
hold that, as each and every page used of the will bears the signatures of the testator and the witnesses,
the fact that said signatures do not all appear on the left margin of each page does not detract from the
validity of the will. The rule laid down in the aforementioned case is that since the document contained
the necessary signatures on each page, whereby each page of the will was authenticated and
safeguarded against any possible alteration, the will’s validity was sustained.

2. NO. The fact that the sheets of the document are not paged with letters, suffice it to cite the case of
Unson v. Abella (43 Phil., 494), where this court held that paging with Arabic numerals and not with letter,
as in the case before us, is within the spirit of the law and is just as valid as paging with letters.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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3. NO. As to the proposition that the attestation clause does not state the number of sheets or pages of
the will, which is the third defect assigned, it must be noted that the last paragraph of the will here in
question and the attestation clause, coming next to it, are of the following tenor:

"In witness whereof, I set my hand unto this will here in the town of Camalig, Albay, Philippine Islands,
this 26th day of November, nineteen hundred and eighteen, composed of four sheets, including the
next:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

"ANTONIO MOJAL
"(Signed and declared by the testator Don Antonio Mojal to be his last will and testament in the presence
of each of us, and at the request of said testator Don Antonio Mojal, we signed this will in the presence
of each other and the testator.)
“xxxx”

It was held that the attestation clause must state the number of sheets or pages composing the will; but
when, as in the case before us, such fact, while it is not stated in the attestation clause, appears at the
end of the will proper, so that no proof aliunde is necessary of the number of the sheets of the will, then
there can be no doubt that it complies with the intention of the law that the number of sheets of which the
will is composed be shown by the document itself, to prevent the number of the sheets of the will from
being unduly increased or decreased.

4. NO. In the attestation clause above set out it is said that the testator signed the will "in the presence
of each of the witnesses" and the latter signed "in the presence of each other and of the testator." So
that, as to whether the testator and the attesting witnesses saw each other sign the will, such a
requirement was clearly and sufficiently complied with. What is not stated in this clause is whether the
testator and the witnesses signed all the sheets of the will.

The act of the testator and the witnesses seeing reciprocally the signing of the will is one whic h cannot
be proven by the mere exhibition the will unless it is stated in the document. And this fact is expressly
stated in the attestation clause now before us. But the fact of the testator and the witnesses having signed
all the sheets of the will may be proven by the mere examination of the document, although it does not
say anything about this, and if that is the fact, as it is the instant case, the danger of fraud in this respect,
which is what the law tries to avoid, does not exist.

Therefore, as in the instant case the fact that the testator and the witnesses signed each and every page
of the will is proven by the mere examination of the signatures in the will, the omission to expressly state
such evident fact does not invalidate the will nor prevent its probate.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

18. Testate Estate of Pilapil. Adrian Mendoza v. Calixto Pilapil y Otros


G.R. No. L-47931; June 27, 1941.
DIAZ, J.:

FACTS:
• Eleuterio Pilapil – testator; parish priest in Mualboal, Cebu
• Calixto – Eleuterio’s brother
• Adrian Mendoza – Eleuterio’s nephew politician
• Jose Cabatingan – Eleuterio’s cousin

Calixto presented Eleuterio’s will only almost 4 years after his death. Eleuterio instituted and appointed
Adrian as the executor of the will. It was provided that in case of Adrian’s inability, negligence, Adrian
shall be replaced by Jose. More importantly, it was alleged that the will “shall not be heard by the court,
since [it] simply confirms, affirms, and assures the legitimacy of the documents for the sale of [Eleuterio’s]
property.

ISSUE:
Is the express provision of the will negating the court’s jurisdiction for its probate valid?

HELD:
No. “The disposition of the testator that his “Last Will Testament and not be heard by the Court” cannot
strip the courts of their authority to determine if your referral will is legalizable or not. They are not
stakeholders in one way or another on an issue, which may confer or remove jurisdiction and authority
to Trubunales to resolve and decide what it wants to resolve law and decide. Please note that the law
requires under penalty, to be delivered to the Court wills made by a testator dies after this, by the person
to whom custody has been entrusted, so it can certainly determine whether your legalization and can at
the same time dispose of their property according to the demand in the same, or if the contract be
declared died intestate, not being susceptible of which had been granted legalization. (Articles 626 to
631, Act No. 190.)”

From Paras’ 2008 Succession book – So essential is probate that a provision in a will stating that “the
will shall not be presented before the courts” is a void provision, for a person cannot by his actuations
deprive a competent court of its jurisdiction. (Mendoza v. Pilapil, 72 Phil. 546).
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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19. Testate Estate of Alipio Abada, Belinda Caponong-Noble v. Alipio Abaja and Noel Abellar
G.R. No. 147145; January 31, 2005
CARPIO, J.:

FACTS:
Alipio Abada (Abada) and his widow Paula Toray (Toray) died without any legitimate children. Alipio
Abaja (Alipio), a grandson of Abada, filed a petition for the probate of Abada’s will. Nicanor Caponong
(Caponong) opposed the petition on the ground that Abada left no will when he died in 1940. The
nephews, nieces and grandchildren of Abada and Toray also opposed the petition.

Both the RTC and the CA admitted the will to probate. The oppositors filed an appeal, claiming primarily
that there is no valid will based on the following grounds: 1) the will does not expressly state that it is
written in a language or dialect known to the testator; 2) the attestation clause does not state the number
of witnesses; and 3) the attestation clause does not expressly state the circumstances that the witnesses
witnessed and signed the will and all its pages in the presence of the testator and of each other.

ISSUES:
1. Is it necessary to state in the will that the testator knows the language used therein?
2. Is the attestation clause of the will valid notwithstanding the alleged defects?

HELD:
1. NO. There is no statutory requirement to state in the will itself that the testator knew the language or
dialect used in the will. This is a matter that a party may establish by proof aliunde. Alipio testified that
Abada used to gather Spanish-speaking people in their place. In these gatherings, Abada and his
companions would talk in the Spanish language. This sufficiently proves that Abada speaks the Spanish
language.

2. YES. While the attestation clause does not state the number of witnesses, a close inspection of the
will shows that three witnesses signed it. The Court has applied the rule on substantial compliance even
before the effectivity of the New Civil Code. We rule to apply the liberal construction in the probate of
Abada’s will. Abada’s will clearly shows four signatures: that of Abada and of three other persons. It is
reasonable to conclude that there are three witnesses to the will. The question on the number of the
witnesses is answered by an examination of the will itself and without the need for presentation of
evidence aliunde.

The so-called liberal rule does not offer any puzzle or difficulty, nor does it open the door to serious
consequences. They do not allow evidence aliunde to fill a void in any part of the document or supply
missing details that should appear in the will itself. They only permit a probe into the will, an exploration
within its confines, to ascertain its meaning or to determine the existence or absence of the requisite
formalities of law.

Futhermore, while precision of language in the drafting of an attestation clause is desirable, it is not
imperative that a parrot-like copy of the words of the statute be made. It is sufficient if from the language
employed it can reasonably be deduced that the attestation clause fulfills what the law expects of it.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

20. Teodoro Caneda, et. al. v. Court of Appeals and William Cabrera
G.R. No. 103554; May 28, 1993
REGALADO, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioners, claiming to be nephews and nieces of testator Mateo Caballero, elevated to the SC the
decision of the CA affirming the RTC, which found the will of Caballero to have been executed in
accordance with law.

Petitioners asserted that the will in question is null and void for the reason that its attestation clause is
fatally defective since it fails to specifically state that the instrumental witnesses to the will witnessed the
testator signing the will in their presence and that they also signed the will and all the pages thereof in
the presence of the testator and of one another. The attestation clause contained “…and he (testator)
has signed the same and every page thereof, on the spaces provided for his signature and on the left
hand margin, in the presence of the said testator and in the presence of each and all of us.”

The CA held that said phrase was in substantial compliance with the requirements of the law.

ISSUE:
1. Is the attestation clause fatally defective?
2. Can the defect be cured under Article 809?

HELD:
1. Yes, it is fatally defective. Under the 3rd par of Article 805, such a clause, the complete lack of which
would result in the invalidity of the will, should state (1) the number of the pages used upon which the will
is written; (2) that the testator signed, or expressly caused another to sign, the will and every page thereof
in the presence of the attesting witnesses; and (3) that the attesting witnesses witnessed the signing by
the testator of the will and all its pages, and that said witnesses also signed the will and every page
thereof in the presence of the testator and of one another.

While the clause in question recites that the testator indeed signed the will and all its pages in the
presence of the three attesting witnesses and states as well the number of pages that were used, the
same does not expressly state therein the circumstance that said witnesses subscribed their respective
signatures to the will in the presence of the testator and of each other.

2. No, it cannot be cured under Art. 809 which provides that in the absence of bad faith, forgery, or fraud,
or undue and improper pressure and influence, defects and imperfections in the form of attestation or in
the language used therein shall not render the will invalid if it is not proved that the will was in fact
executed and attested in substantial compliance with all the requirements of article 805.

The absence of that statement required by law is a fatal defect or imperfection which must necessarily
result in the disallowance of the will. Petitioners are correct in pointing out that the aforestated defect in
the attestation clause obviously cannot be characterized as merely involving the form of the will or the
language used therein which would warrant the application of the substantial compliance rule. The rule
must be limited to disregarding those defects that can be supplied by an examination of the will itself:
whether all the pages are consecutively numbered; whether the signatures appear in each and every
page; whether the subscribing witnesses are three or the will was notarized. All these are facts that the
will itself can reveal, and defects or even omissions concerning them in the attestation clause can be
safely disregarded. But the total number of pages, and whether all persons required to sign did so in the

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
26
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

presence of each other must substantially appear in the attestation clause, being the only check against
perjury in the probate proceedings.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

21. Marcela Rodelas v. Amparo Aranza, et. al.


G.R. No. L-58509; December 7, 1982
RELOVA, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioner Marcela Rodelas (Rodelas) filed a petition for the probate of the holographic will of the
decedent Ricardo B. Bonilla. Amparo Aranza (Aranza) opposed the petition on the ground that Rodelas
failed to produce the will within 20 days from decedent's death; that the holographic will did not contain
a disposition of property after death; that the holographic will itself must be produced not an alleged copy
thereof; and that the deceased did not leave a will. The trial court ruled in favor of Rodelas.

Aranza filed a motion for reconsideration, thus the court reversed its order and dismissed the petition for
probate, ruling that once the original copy of the holographic will is lost, a copy thereof cannot stand in
lieu of the original. It also held that since there was already a lapse of 14 years from the execution thereof,
the fact that the original cannot be located shows that the decedent discarded it. Rodelas appealed to
CA, but Amparo moved to forward the case to SC, since it does not involve a question of fact.

ISSUE:
May a holographic will which was lost or cannot be found be proved by means of a photostatic copy?

HELD:
YES. A holographic will which was lost or cannot be found can be proved by means of a photostatic copy.

If the holographic will has been lost or destroyed and no other copy is available, the will cannot be
probated because the best and only evidence is the handwriting of the testator in said will. It is necessary
that there be a comparison between sample handwritten statements of the testator and the handwritten
will. But, a photostatic copy or xerox copy of the holographic will may be allowed because comparison
can be made with the standard writings of the testator. Evidently, the photostatic or xerox copy of the lost
or destroyed holographic will may be admitted because then the authenticity of the handwriting of the
deceased can be determined by the probate court.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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22. Eugenia Ramonal Codoy and Manuel Ramonal v. Evangeline R. Calugay, Josephine Salcedo,
and Eufemia Patigas
G.R. No. 123486; August 12, 1999
PARDO, J.:

FACTS:
On April 6, 1990, private respondents Evangeline Calugay, Josephine Salcedo and Eufemia Patigas,
devisees and legatees of the holographic will of the deceased Matilde Seo Vda. de Ramonal, filed with
the Regional Trial Court, Misamis Oriental, Branch 18, a petition for probate of the holographic will of the
deceased, who died on January 16, 1990.

Petitioners Eugenia Ramonal Codoy and Manuel Ramonal filed an opposition to the petition for probate,
alleging that the holographic will was a forgery and that the same is even illegible.

Respondents presented six (6) witnesses and various documentary evidence. Petitioners instead of
presenting their evidence, filed a demurrer to evidence, claiming that respondents failed to establish
sufficient factual and legal basis for the probate of the holographic will of the deceased. The demurrer to
evidence was granted. Respondents filed an appeal which was granted by the CA. The CA applied the
ruling in Azaola v Singson that no witness need be present in the execution of the holographic will
pursuant to Art. 810 of the Civil Code and the rule requiring the production of three witnesses is merely
permissive.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the provisions of Article 811 of the Civil Code are permissive or mandatory

HELD:
Yes. The word “shall” connotes a mandatory order. We have ruled that “shall” in a statute commonly
denotes an imperative obligation and is inconsistent with the idea of discretion and that the presumption
is that the word shall, when used in a statute is mandatory. Laws are enacted to achieve a goal intended
and to guide against an evil or mischief that aims to prevent. In the case at bar, the goal to achieve is to
give effect to the wishes of the deceased and the evil to be prevented is the possibility that unscrupulous
individuals who for their benefit will employ means to defeat the wishes of the testator.

In the case of Ajero v. Court of Appeals, we said that the object of the solemnities surrounding the
execution of wills is to close the door against bad faith and fraud, to avoid substitution of wills and
testaments and to guaranty their truth and authenticity. Therefore, the laws on this subject should be
interpreted in such a way as to attain these primordial ends. But, on the other hand, also one must not
lose sight of the fact that it is not the object of the law to restrain and curtail the exercise of the right to
make a will.

However, we cannot eliminate the possibility of a false document being adjudged as the will of the
testator, which is why if the holographic will is contested, that law requires three witnesses to declare that
the will was in the handwriting of the deceased.

The will was found not in the personal belongings of the deceased but with one of the respondents, who
kept it even before the death of the deceased. In the testimony of Ms. Binanay, she revealed that the will
was in her possession as early as 1985, or five years before the death of the deceased. There was no
opportunity for an expert to compare the signature and the handwriting of the deceased with other
documents signed and executed by her during her lifetime. The only chance at comparison was during
the cross- examination of Ms. Binanay when the lawyer of petitioners asked Ms. Binanay to compare the

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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documents which contained the signature of the deceased with that of the holographic will and she is not
a handwriting expert. Even the former lawyer of the deceased expressed doubts as to the authenticity of
the signature in the holographic will.

A visual examination of the holographic will convince us that the strokes are different when compared
with other documents written by the testator. The signature of the testator in some of the disposition is
not readable. There were uneven strokes, retracing and erasures on the will. We, therefore, cannot be
certain that the holographic will was in the handwriting by the deceased.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
30
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

23. Spouses Roberto and Thelma Ajero v. Court Appeals and Clemente Sand
G.R. No. 106720; September 15, 1994
PUNO, J.:

FACTS:
In the will, decedent, Anne Sand, named as devisees, the following: petitioners Roberto and Thelma
Ajero, private respondent Clemente Sand among others.

Petitioners instituted a probate proceeding for the allowance of decedent's holographic will. They alleged
that at the time of its execution, she was of sound and disposing mind, not acting under duress, fraud or
undue influence, and was in every respect capacitated to dispose of her estate by will.

Private respondent opposed the petition on the grounds that: neither the testament's body nor the
signature therein was in decedent's handwriting; it contained alterations and corrections which were not
duly signed by decedent; and, the will was procured by petitioners through improper pressure and undue
influence. The petition was likewise opposed by Dr. Jose Ajero. He contested the disposition in the will
of a house and lot located in Cabadbaran. He claimed that said property could not be conveyed by
decedent in its entirety, as she was not its sole owner.

The RTC court admitted the decedent's holographic will to probate which was reversed by the CA.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the unsigned alterations and corrections in a holographic will warrants the dismissal of
the probate proceedings?

HELD:
NO. The requirements provided by Art. 813 on alterations and corrections shall only affect the
dispositions contained in the holographic will but not its probate.

If the testator fails to sign and date some of the dispositions, the result is that these dispositions cannot
be effectuated. Such failure, however, does not render the whole testament void. Probate courts are
limited to pass only upon the extrinsic validity of the will sought to be probated. However, in exceptional
instances, courts are not powerless to do what the situation constrains them to do, and pass upon certain
provisions of the will.

In the case at bench, decedent herself indubitably stated in her holographic will that the Cabadbaran
property is in the name of her late father, John H. Sand which led oppositor Dr. Jose Ajero to question
her conveyance of the same in its entirety.

Therefore, she cannot validly dispose of the whole property, which she shares with her father's other
heirs.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
31
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

24. Federico Azaola v. Cesario Singson


G.R. No. L-14003; August 5, 1960
REYES, J.B.L., J.:

FACTS:
Fortunata S. Vda. De Yance died on September 9, 1957. Petitioner submitted for probate her holographic
will, in which Maria Azaola was made the sole heir as against the nephew, who is the defendant. Only
one witness, Francisoco Azaola, was presented to testify on the handwriting of the testatrix. He testified
that he had seen it one month, more or less, before the death of the testatrix, as it was given to him and
his wife; and that it was in the testatrix’s handwriting. He presented the mortgage, the special power of
the attorney, and the general power of attorney, and the deeds of sale including an affidavit to reinforce
his statement. Two residence certificates showing the testatrix’s signature were also exhibited for
comparison purposes.

The probate was denied on the ground that under Article 811 of the Civil Code, the proponent must
present three witnesses who could declare that the will and the signature are in the writing of the testatrix,
the probate being contested; and because the lone witness presented “did not prove sufficiently that the
body of the will was written in the handwriting of the testatrix.”

Petitioner appealed, urging: first, that he was not bound to produce more than one witness because the
will’s authenticity was not questioned; and second, that Article 811 does not mandatorily require the
production of three witnesses to identify the handwriting and signature of a holographic will, even if its
authenticity should be denied by the adverse party.

ISSUE:
Is the presentation of three witnesses for the probate of a contested holographic will mandatory?

HELD:
No. Article 811 of our present Civil Code can not be interpreted as torequire the compulsory presentation
of three witnesses to identify the handwriting of the testator, under penalty of having the probate denied.
Since no witness may have been present at the execution of a holographic will, none being required by
law (Art. 810, new Civil Code), it becomes obvious that the existence of witness possessing the requisite
qualifications is a matter beyond the control of the proponent. For it is not merely a question of finding
and producing any three witnesses; they must be witnesses "who know the handwriting and signature of
the testator" and who can declare "that the will and the signature are in the handwriting of the testator".
There may be no available witness of the testator's hand; or even if so familiarized, the witnesses may
be unwilling to give a positive opinion. Compliance with the rule of paragraph 1 of Article 811 may thus
become an impossibility.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
32
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

25. Natividad Nazareno v. Court of Appeals


G.R. No. 138842; October 18, 2000
MENDOZA, J.:

FACTS:
As can be seen, the law foresees the possibility that no qualified witness may be found (or what
amounts to the same thing, that no competent witness may be willing to testify to the authenticity
of the will), and provides for resort to expert evidence to supply the deficiency. Maximino
Nazareno, Sr. and Aurea Poblete were husband and wife. Aurea died on April 15, 1970, while
Maximino, Sr. died on December 18, 1980. They had five children, namely, Natividad, Romeo,
Jose, Pacifico, and Maximino, Jr. Natividad and Maximino, Jr. are the petitioners in this case,
while the estate of Maximino, Sr., Romeo, and his wife Eliza Nazareno are the respondents. After
the death of Maximino, Sr., Romeo filed an intestate case in the RTC of Cavite. Romeo was
appointed administrator of his father’s estate. In the course of the intestate proceedings, Romeo
discovered that his parents had executed several deeds of sale conveying a number of real
properties in favor of his sister, Natividad. Among the lots covered by the above Deed of Sale
is Lot 3B which is registered under TCT No. 140946. This lot had been occupied by Romeo,
his wife Eliza, and by Maximino, Jr. since 1969. Unknown to Romeo, Natividad sold Lot 3-B on
July 31, 1982 to Maximino, Jr., for which reason the latter was issued TCT No. 293701 by the
Register of Deeds of Quezon City.

Romeo sought the declaration of nullity of the sale made on January 29, 1970 to Natividad and
that made on July 31, 1982 to Maximino, Jr. on the ground that both sales were void for lack
of consideration.

Natividad and Maximino, Jr. filed a third-party complaint against the spouses Romeo and Eliza.They
alleged that Lot 3, which was included in the Deed of Absolute Sale of January 29, 1970 to
Natividad, had been surreptitiously appropriated by Romeo by securing for himself a new title
(TCT No. 277968) in his name. They alleged that Lot 3 is being leased by the spouses Romeo
and Eliza to third persons. They therefore sought the annulment of the transfer to Romeo and
the cancellation of his title, the eviction of Romeo and his wife Eliza and all persons claiming
rights from Lot 3, and the payment of damages.

Romeo presented evidence to show that Maximino and Aurea Nazareno never intended to sell
the six lots to Natividad and that Natividad was only to hold the said lots in trust for her siblings.
He presented the Deed of Partition and Distribution dated June 28, 1962 executed by Maximino
Sr. and Aurea and duly signed by all of their children, except Jose, who was then abroad and
was represented by their mother, Aurea.

Petitioners make capital of the fact that in C.A.-G.R. CV No. 12932, which was declared final by
this Court in G.R. No. 107684, the Court of Appeals upheld the right of Maximino, Jr. to recover
possession of Lot 3-B. In that case, the Court of Appeals held:

As shown in the preceding disquisition, Natividad P. Nazareno acquired the property in dispute
by purchase in 1970. She was issued Transfer Certificate of Title No. 162738 of the Registry of
Deeds of Quezon City. When her parents died, her mother Aurea Poblete-Nazareno in 1970 and
her father Maximino A. Nazareno, Sr. in 1980, Natividad P. Nazareno had long been the exclusive
owner of the property in question. There was no way therefore that the aforesaid property could
belong to the estate of the spouses Maximino Nazareno, Sr. and Aurea Poblete. The mere fact
that Romeo P. Nazareno included the same property in an inventory of the properties of the

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
33
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deceased Maximino A. Nazareno, Sr. will not adversely affect the ownership of the said realty.
Appellant Romeo P. Nazareno’s suspicion that his parents had entrusted all their assets under
the care and in the name of Natividad P. Nazareno, their eldest living sister who was still single,
to be divided upon their demise to all the compulsory heirs, has not progressed beyond mere
speculation. His barefaced allegation on the point not only is without any corroboration but is
even belied by documentary evidence. x x x x

ISSUES:
1. Should the judgment of the Court of Appeals upholding the ownership of Maximo, Jr. over the
lot under consideration be binding to the estate of Maximo Sr.?
2. Should the lots in question be a proper subject of collation?

HELD:
1. NO. To be sure, the above cited case decided by the Court of Appeals was for recovery of
possession based on ownership of Lot 3-B. The parties in that case were Maximino, Jr., as
plaintiff, and the spouses Romeo and Eliza, as defendants. On the other hand, the parties in
the present case for annulment of sale are the estate of Maximino, Sr., as plaintiff, and Natividad
and Maximino, Jr., as defendants. Romeo and Eliza were named third-party defendants after a
third-party complaint was filed by Natividad and Maximino, Jr. As already stated, however, this
third-party complaint concerned Lot 3, and not Lot 3-B. The estate of a deceased person is a
juridical entity that has a personality of its own. Though Romeo represented at one time the
estate of Maximino, Sr., the latter has a separate and distinct personality from the former. Hence,
the judgment in CA-GR CV No. 12932 regarding the ownership of Maximino, Jr. over Lot 3-B
binds Romeo and Eliza only, and not the estate of Maximino, Sr., which also has a right to
recover properties which were wrongfully disposed.

2. YES. As Romeo admitted, no consideration was paid by him to his parents for the Deed of
Sale. Therefore, the sale was void for having been simulated. Natividad never acquired ownership
over the property because the Deed of Sale in her favor is also void for being without
consideration and title to Lot 3 cannot be issued in her name. Nonetheless, it cannot be denied
that Maximino, Sr. intended to give the six Quezon City lots to Natividad. As Romeo testified,
their parents executed the Deed of Sale in favor of Natividad because the latter was the only
“female and the only unmarried member of the family.”She was thus entrusted with the real
properties in behalf of her siblings. As she herself admitted, she intended to convey Lots 10 and
11 to Jose in the event the latter returned from abroad. There was thus an implied trust
constituted in her favor. Art. 1449 of the Civil Code states: There is also an implied trust when
a donation is made to a person but it appears that although the legal estate is transmitted to
the donee, he nevertheless is either to have no beneficial interest or only a part thereof. There
being an implied trust, the lots in question are therefore subject to collation in accordance with
Art. 1061 which states: Every compulsory heir, who succeeds with other compulsory heirs, must
bring into the mass of the estate any property or right which he may have received from the
decedent, during the lifetime of the latter, by way of donation, or any other gratuitous title, in
order that it may be computed in the determination of the legitime of each heir, and in the
account of the partition.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
34
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

26. Jose Rivera v. Intermediate Appellate Court and Adelaido J. Rivera


G.R. Nos. 75005-06; February 15, 1990
CRUZ, J.:

FACTS:
Venancio Rivera, a prominent and wealthy man, died. Jose Rivera (Jose), claiming to be the only
surviving legitimate son of the deceased, filed a petition for the issuance of letters of administration over
Venancio's estate. This petition was opposed by Adelaido J. Rivera (Adelaido), who denied that Jose
was the son of the decedent. Adelaido averred that Venancio was his father and did not die intestate but
in fact left two holographic wills.1

The trial court found that Jose was not the son of the decedent but of a different Venancio Rivera who
was married to Maria Vital. The Venancio Rivera whose estate was in question was married to Maria
Jocson, by whom he had seven children, including Adelaido. Jose had no claim to this estate because
the decedent was not his father. The holographic wills were also admitted to probate.

ISSUE:
Is Jose Rivera the proper party to contest the authenticity of a holographic will as contemplated under
Art. 811?

HELD:
No. The existence and therefore also the authenticity of the holographic wills were questioned by Jose
Rivera and claimed that they were spurious. Consequently, it may be argued, the respondent court should
have applied Article 811 of the Civil Code, providing as follows: “In the probate of a holographic will, it
shall be necessary that at least one witness who knows the handwriting and signature of the testator
explicitly declare that the will and the signature are in the handwriting of the testator. If the will is
contested, at least three of such witnesses shall be required.”

However, as already determined, Jose Rivera is not the son of the deceased Venancio Rivera whose
estate is in question. Hence, being a mere stranger, he had no personality to contest the wills and his
opposition thereto did not have the legal effect of requiring the three witnesses. The testimony of Zenaida
and Venancio Rivera, Jr., who authenticated the wills as having been written and signed by their father,
was sufficient.

Hence, there is no necessity of presenting the three witnesses required under Article 811 because the
authenticity of the holographic wills had not been questioned.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
35
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

27. Labrador vs Court of Appeals


G.R. Nos. 83843-44; April 5, 1990
PARAS, J.:

FACTS:
Melecio Labrador died leaving behind a parcel of land to his heirs. However, during probate proceedings,
Jesus and Gaudencio Labrador filed an opposition on the ground that the will has been extinguished by
implication of law alleging that before Melecio’s death, the land was sold to them evidenced by TCT No.
21178. Trial court admitted the will to probate and declared the TCT null and void. However, the CA on
appeal denied probate on the ground that it was undated.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the alleged holographic will is dated, as provided for in Article 810 of CC

HELD:
YES. The law does not specify a particular location where the date should be placed in the will. The only
requirements are that the date be in the will itself and executed in the hand of the testator. The will has
been dated in the hand of the testator himself in perfect compliance with Article 810. It is worthy of note
to quote the first paragraph of the second page of the holographic will, viz:

And this is the day in which we agreed that we are making the partitioning and assigning the
respective assignment of the said fishpond, and this being in the month of March, 17th day, in the
year 1968, and this decision and or instruction of mine is the matter to be followed. And the one
who made this writing is no other than MELECIO LABRADOR, their father.

The intention to show March 17 1968 as the date of the execution is plain from the tenor of the succeeding
words of the paragraph. It states that “this being in the month of March 17th day, in the year 1968, and
this decision and or instruction of mine is the matter to be followed. And the one who made this writing is
no other than Melecio Labrador, their father.” This clearly shows that this is a unilateral act of Melecio
who plainly knew that he was executing a will.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
36
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

28. Dy Yieng Seangio, Barbara D. Seangio and Virginia D. Seangio v. Hon. Amor A. Reyes
G.R. Nos. 140371-72; November 27, 2006
AZCUNA, J.:

FACTS:
Respondent Alfredo Seangio et al filed a petition for the settlement of the intestate estate of the late
Segundo Seangio. However, petitioners Dy Yieng Seangio et al opposed this, saying Segundo left a
holographic will disinhenriting Alfredo Seangio.

Dy Yieng then filed a petition for the probate of Segundo’s holographic will which contained the following:
Ako si Segundo Seangio… ay tahasan at hayagang inaalisan ko ng lahat at anumang mana ang paganay
kong anak na si Alfredo Seangio dahil siya ay naging lapastangan sa akin at isang beses siya nagsasalita
ng masama harapan ko at mga kapatid niya na... labis kong kinasama ng loob ko.”

Alfredo moved for the dismissal of the probate proceedings on the ground that the document does not
contain any disposition of the estate, and does not meet the definition of a will.

ISSUE:
Can the document executed be considered a holographic will?

HELD:
Yes. Segundo’s document, although it may initially come across as a mere disinheritance instrument,
conforms to the formalities of a holographic will prescribed by law. It is written, dated and signed by the
hand of Segundo himself. An intent to dispose mortis causa9 can be clearly deduced from the terms of
the instrument, and while it does not make an affirmative disposition of the latter’s property, the
disinheritance of Alfredo, nonetheless, is an act of disposition in itself. In other words, the disinheritance
results in the disposition of the property of the testator Segundo in favor of those who would succeed in
the absence of Alfredo.

Moreover, it is a fundamental principle that the intent or the will of the testator. Holographic wills,
therefore, being usually prepared by one who is not learned in the law, as illustrated in the present case,
should be construed more liberally than the ones drawn by an expert, taking into account the
circumstances surrounding the execution of the instrument and the intention of the testator.

The Court is convinced that the document, even if captioned as Kasulatan ng Pag-Aalis ng Mana, was
intended by Segundo to be his last testamentary act and was executed by him in accordance with law in
the form of a holographic will.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
37
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

29. Spouses Iluminada Capitle and Cirilo Capitle v. Fortunata Elbambuena and Rosalinda C. Olar
G.R. No. 169193; November 30, 2006
CARPIO-MORALES, J.:

FACTS:
The property in litigation is an agricultural land owned by Cristobal Olar by virtue of a Certificate of Land
Ownership Award.

Respondents Fortunata Elbambuena and Rosalinda Olar, spouse and daughter-in-law, respectively, of
Olar, now deceased, claim that Olar relinquished one-half of the lot to Rosalinda by a Kasunduan dated
July 17, 1992 the execution of which was witnessed by petitioner Cirilo Capitle. The remaining portion of
the lot was surrendered to Fortunata by an undated document.

Respondents alleged that petitioners were allowed to occupy the lot to pursue a means of livelihood.
Since 1990, however, petitioners did not pay rentals despite demand therefor, and neither did they heed
the demand to return the possession of the lot, drawing respondents to file a Petition for Recovery of
Possession and Payment of Back Rentals against petitioners before the Department of Agrarian Reform
Adjudication Board.

Petitioners, on the other hand, claiming that they have been in possession of the lot since 1960, presented
a Waiver of Rights executed by Olar wherein he renounced in their favor his rights and participation over
the lot. Although the CLOA was issued to Olar, petitioners contend that their preferential right over the
lot should be recognized, they being the transferees pursuant to the Waiver of Rights and the actual tillers
thereof. Furthermore, petitioners claim that Olar could not have intended to leave the property to
Fortunata as they have long separated.

ISSUE:
Is Fortunata disqualified from inheriting from Olar?

HELD:
NO. Although estranged from Olar, respondent Fortunata remained his wife and legal heir, mere
estrangement not being a legal ground for the disqualification of a surviving spouse as an heir of the
deceased spouse.

Cristobal Olars death substantially passed all his rights and interest in and over the subject property to
his legal heirs by operation of law. In the case at bench, to herein respondents -appellees: to Fortunata
Elbambuena, being his surviving wife, and to Rosalinda Olar, his sons surviving spouse, acting for and
in behalf of her children with Nemesio Olar. This is as it should, considering that rights to the succession
are transmitted from the moment of death of the decedent. And since Fortunata Elbambuena and
Rosalinda Olars relationship with Cristobal Olar was in this case never put in issue, their being legal heirs
of the deceased gave them unqualified right to participate in all proceedings affecting the subject
property.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
38
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

30. Paz Samaniego-Celada v. Lucia D. Abena


G.R. No. 145545; June 30, 2008
QUISUMBING, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioner Paz was the first cousin of decedent Margarita while respondent Lucia was the decedent’s
lifelong companion. Margarita died single and without any ascending nor descending heirs. She was
survived by her first cousins including petitioner. Before her death, Margarita executed a Will where she
bequeathed all her personal properties to respondent whom she likewise designated as sole executor of
her will. Petitioner filed a petition for letters of administration of the estate of Margarita. Respondent then
filed a petition for probate of the will of Margarita. Petitioner argues that Margarita’s Will failed to comply
with the formalities required under Article 805 because the will was not signed by the testator in the
presence of the instrumental witnesses and in the presence of one another. She also argues that the
signatures of the testator on pages A, B, and C of the will are not the same, indicating that they were not
signed on the same day.

ISSUE:
Did the Will conform to the formalities required by law?

HELD:
YES. Anent the contestant’s submission that the will is fatally defective for the reason that its attestation
clause states that the will is composed of 3 pages while in fact, the will consists of 2 pages only because
the attestation is not a part of the notarial will, the same is not accurate. While it is true that the attestation
clause is not a part of the will, the Court, after examining the totality of the will, is of the considered opinion
that error in the number of pages of the will as stated in the attestation clause is not material to invalidate
the subject will. It must be noted that the subject instrument is consecutively lettered with pages A, B,
and C which is a sufficient safeguard from the possibility of an omission of some of the pages. The error
must have been brought about by the honest belief that the will is the whole instrument consisting of 3
pages inclusive of the attestation clause and the acknowledgement. The position of the Court is in
consonance with the doctrine of liberal interpretation enunciated in Article 809 of the Civil Code which
reads: In the absence of bad faith, forgery or fraud, or undue and improper pressure and influence,
defects and imperfections in the form of attestation or in the language used therein shall not render the
will invalid if it is proved that the will was in fact executed and attested in substantial compliance with all
the requirements of Article 805.

The Court also rejects the contention of petitioner that the signatures of the testator were affixed on
different occasions based on their observation that the signature on the first page is allegedly different in
size, texture, and appearance as compared with the signatures in the succeeding pages. After
examination of the signatures, the Court does not share the same observation as the petitioner. It was
shown that the testator was affixing her signature in the presence of the instrumental witnesses and the
notary. There is no evidence to show that the first signature was procured earlier than that date.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

III. ARTICLES 825-839 (CODICILS, REVOCATION OF WILLS, REPUBLICATION & REVIVAL,


ALLOWANCE & DISALLOWANCE)

31. In the Matter of the Petition to Approve the Will of Ricardo B. Bonilla, Marcela Rodelas v.
Amparo Aranza, et al.
G.R. No. L-58509; December 7, 1982
RELOVA, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioner Marcela Rodelas filed a petition for the probate of the holographic will of Ricardo Bonilla and
the issuance of letters testamentary in her favor. The petition was opposed by respondents Amparo
Aranza, et al. on the ground, among others, that the lost or destroyed holographic wills cannot be proved
by secondary evidence (specifically in this case, a photostatic copy of the will) unlike ordinary wills.

The probate court dismissed the probate of the will declaring that once the original copy of the holographic
will is lost, a copy thereof cannot stand in lieu of the original. The petitioner appealed to the CA but the
case was certified to the Supreme Court.

ISSUE:
Whether or not a holographic will which was lost or cannot be found can be proved by means of a
photostatic copy

HELD:
YES. Pursuant to Article 811 of the Civil Code, probate of holographic wills is the allowance of the will by
the court after its due execution has been proved. The probate may be uncontested or not. If uncontested,
at least one (1) identifying witness is required and, if no witness is available, experts may be resorted to.
If contested, at least three (3) identifying witnesses are required. However, if the holographic will has
been lost or destroyed and no other copy is available, the will cannot be probated because the best and
only evidence is the handwriting of the testator in said will. It is necessary that there be a comparison
between sample handwritten statements of the testator and the handwritten will. But, a photostatic copy
or xerox copy of the holographic will may be allowed because comparison can be made with the standard
writings of the testator.

In the case of Gam v. Yap, the Court ruled that "the execution and the contents of a lost or destroyed
holographic will may not be proved by the bare testimony of witnesses who have seen and/or read such
will. The will itself must be presented; otherwise, it shall produce no effect. The law regards the document
itself as material proof of authenticity." But, in Footnote 8 of said decision, it says that "Perhaps it may be
proved by a photographic or photostatic copy. Even a mimeographed or carbon copy; or by other similar
means, if any, whereby the authenticity of the handwriting of the deceased may be exhibited and tested
before the probate court." Evidently, the photostatic or xerox copy of the lost or destroyed holographic
will may be admitted because then the authenticity of the handwriting of the deceased can be determined
by the probate court.

Therefore, the probate of the holographic will of Ricardo Bonilla should proceed.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

32. Spouses Roberto and Thelma Ajero v. Court of Appeals and Clemente Sand
G.R. No. 106720; 14 September 1994
PUNO, J.:

FACTS:
The decedent names as devisees Roberto and Thelma Ajero, private respondent Clemente Sand,
Meriam Arong, Leah Sand, Lilia Sand, Edgar Sand, Fe Sand, Lisa Sand, and Dr. Jose Ajero and their
children. The petitioners filed a petition for the allowance of decendent's holo will. Private Respondent
opposed the petition on the grounds that: neither the testament's body nor the signature therein was in
decendent's handwriting; it contained alterations and corrections which were not duly signed by the
decedent; and the will was procured by pets through improper pressure and undue influence. Dr. Jose
Ajero also opposed the petition. He contested the disposition in the will of a house and lot located in
Cabadbaran, Agusan Del Norte. He claimed that said property could not be conveyed by decedent in its
entirety, as she was not its sole owner. The trial court admitted the holo will to probate. On appeal, the
said decision was reversed and the pet for probate was dismissed. The CA found that the holo will failed
to meet the requirements for its validity. I held that the decedent did not comply with Arts 813 and 814. It
alluded to certain dispositions in the will which were either unsigned and undated, or signed but not dated.
It also found that the erasures, alterations and cancellations made thereon had not been authenticated
by decedent.

ISSUE:
Is the respondent court correct in disallowing the probate of the will?

HELD:
NO. The list in Art. 839 is exclusive; no other grounds can serve to disallow a will. 5 Thus, in a petition to
admit a holographic will to probate, the only issues to be resolved are: (1) whether the instrument
submitted is, indeed, the decedent's last will and testament;(2) whether said will was executed in
accordance with the formalities prescribed by law;(3) whether the decedent had the necessary
testamentary capacity at the time the will was executed; and,(4) whether the execution of the will and its
signing were the voluntary acts of the decedent. A reading of Article 813 of the New Civil Code shows
that its requirement affects the validity of the dispositions contained in the holographic will, but not its
probate. If the testator fails to sign and date some of the dispositions, the result is that these dispositions
cannot be effectuated. Such failure, however, does not render the whole testament void.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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33. Sofia J. Nepomuceno v. Court of Appeals, Rufina Gomez, Oscar Jugo Ang, Carmelita Jugo
G.R. No. L-62952; October 9, 1985
GUTIERREZ, JR., J.:

FACTS:
Martin Jugo died. He left a last Will and Testament. In the said Will, the testator named and appointed
herein petitioner Sofia J. Nepomuceno as his sole and only executor of his estate. It is clearly stated in
the Will that the testator was legally married to a certain Rufina Gomez by whom he had two legitimate
children, Oscar and Carmelita, but since 1952, he had been estranged from his lawfully wedded wife and
had been living with petitioner as husband and wife. In fact, Martin Jugo and the petitioner herein, Sofia
J. Nepomuceno were married before the Justice of the Peace. The testator devised to his forced heirs,
namely, his legal wife Rufina Gomez and his children Oscar and Carmelita his entire estate and the free
portion thereof to herein petitioner.

Petitioner filed a petition for the probate of the last Will and Testament. Rufina Gomez and her children
filed an opposition alleging inter alia that the execution of the Will was procured by undue and improper
influence on the part of the petitioner; that at the time of the execution of the Will, the testator was already
very sick and that petitioner having admitted her living in concubinage with the testator, she is wanting in
integrity and thus, letters testamentary should not be issued to her.

The lower court denied the probate of the Will. The CFI declared the Will to be valid except that the devise
in favor of the petitioner is null and void pursuant to Article 739 in relation with Article 1028 of the Civil
Code of the Philippines.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the respondent court acted in excess of its jurisdiction when after declaring the last Will
and Testament of the deceased Martin Jugo validly drawn, it went on to pass upon the intrinsic validity
of the testamentary provision in favor of herein petitioner

HELD:
No. The respondent court acted within its jurisdiction when after declaring the Will to be validly drawn, it
went on to pass upon the intrinsic validity of the Will and declared the devise in favor of the petitioner null
and void. The general rule is that in probate proceedings, the court's area of inquiry is limited to an
examination and resolution of the extrinsic validity of the Will. The rule, however, is not inflexible and
absolute. Given exceptional circumstances, the probate court is not powerless to do what the situation
constrains it to do and pass upon certain provisions of the Will. As stated in Nuguid v. Nuguid: We pause
to reflect. If the case were to be remanded for probate of the will, nothing will be gained. On the contrary,
this litigation will be protracted. And for aught that appears in the record, in the event of probate or if the
court rejects the will, probability exists that the case will come up once again before us on the same issue
of the intrinsic validity or nullity of the will. Result, waste of time, effort, expense, plus added anxiety.
These are the practical considerations that induce us to a belief that we might as well meet head-on the
issue of the validity of the provisions of the will in question. After all, there exists a justiciable controversy
crying for solution.

We see no useful purpose that would be served if we remand the nullified provision to the proper court
in a separate action for that purpose simply because, in the probate of a will, the court does not ordinarily
look into the intrinsic validity of its provisions.

There is no question from the records about the fact of a prior existing marriage when Martin Jugo
executed his Will. There is also no dispute that the petitioner and Mr. Jugo lived together in an ostensible

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
42
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

marital relationship for 22 years until his death. It is also a fact that on December 2, 1952, Martin Jugo
and Sofia J. Nepomuceno contracted a marriage before the Justice of the Peace of Victoria, Tarlac. The
man was then 51 years old while the woman was 48. Nepomuceno now contends that she acted in good
faith for 22 years in the belief that she was legally married to the testator. The records do not sustain a
finding of innocence or good faith.

Moreover, the prohibition in Article 739 of the Civil Code is against the making of a donation between
persons who are living in adultery or concubinage. It is the donation which becomes void. The giver
cannot give even assuming that the recipient may receive. The very wordings of the Will invalidate the
legacy because the testator admitted he was disposing the properties to a person with whom he had
been living in concubinage.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
43
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34. Polly Cayetano v. Hon. Tomas T. Leonidas, in his capacity as the Presiding Judge of Branch
XXXVIII, Court of First Instance of Manila and Nenita Campos Paguia
G.R. No. L-54919; May 30, 1984
GUTIERREZ, JR., J.:

FACTS:
On January 31, 1977, Adoracion C. Campos died, leaving her father, petitioner Hermogenes Campos
and her sisters, private respondent Nenita C. Paguia, Remedios C. Lopez and Marieta C. Medina as the
surviving heirs. As Hermogenes Campos was the only compulsory heir, he executed an Affidavit of
Adjudication under Rule 74, Section I of the Rules of Court whereby he adjudicated unto himself the
ownership of the entire estate of the deceased Adoracion Campos.

Eleven months after, on November 25, 1977, Nenita C. Paguia filed a petition for the reprobate of a will
of the deceased, Adoracion Campos, which was allegedly executed in the United States and for her
appointment as administratrix of the estate of the deceased testatrix.

In her petition, Nenita alleged that the testatrix was an American citizen at the time of her death and was
a permanent resident of 4633 Ditman Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.; that the testatrix died
in Manila on January 31, 1977 while temporarily residing with her sister at 2167 Leveriza, Malate, Manila;
that during her lifetime, the testatrix made her last will and testament on July 10, 1975, according to the
laws of Pennsylvania, U.S.A., nominating Wilfredo Barzaga of New Jersey as executor; that after the
testatrix death, her last will and testament was presented, probated, allowed, and registered with the
Registry of Wins at the County of Philadelphia, U.S.A., that Clement L. McLaughlin, the administrator
who was appointed after Dr. Barzaga had declined and waived his appointment as executor in favor of
the former, is also a resident of Philadelphia, U.S.A., and that therefore, there is an urgent need for the
appointment of an administratrix to administer and eventually distribute the properties of the estate
located in the Philippines.

On January 11, 1978, an opposition to the reprobate of the will was filed by herein petitioner alleging
among other things, that he has every reason to believe that the will in question is a forgery; that the
intrinsic provisions of the will are null and void; and that even if pertinent American laws on intrinsic
provisions are invoked, the same could not apply inasmuch as they would work injustice and injury to
him.

On January 10, 1979, the respondent judge issued an order, admitting and allowing for probate the Last
Will and Testament of the late Adoracion C. Campos, and Nenita Campos Paguia appointed as
Administratrix of the estate of said decedent.

ISSUE:
Is there a disregard of the Law on Succession, as regards the determination of the intrinsic validity of the
provisions of the will, based on the national law of the decedent?

HELD:
As a general rule, the probate court's authority is limited only to the extrinsic validity of the will, the due
execution thereof, the testatrix's testamentary capacity and the compliance with the requisites or
solemnities prescribed by law. The intrinsic validity of the will normally comes only after the court has
declared that the will has been duly authenticated. However, where practical considerations demand that
the intrinsic validity of the will be passed upon, even before it is probated, the court should meet the
issue.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
44
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

In the case at bar, the petitioner maintains that since the respondent judge allowed the reprobate of
Adoracion's will, Hermogenes C. Campos was divested of his legitime which was reserved by the law for
him.

This contention is without merit.

Although on its face, the will appeared to have preterited the petitioner and thus, the respondent judge
should have denied its reprobate outright, the private respondents have sufficiently established that
Adoracion was, at the time of her death, an American citizen and a permanent resident of Philadelphia,
Pennsylvania, U.S.A. Therefore, under Article 16 par. (2) and 1039 of the Civil Code which respectively
provide:

Art. 16 par. (2). xxx xxx xxx However, intestate and testamentary successions, both with respect to the
order of succession and to the amount of successional rights and to the intrinsic validity of testamentary
provisions, shall be regulated by the national law of the person whose succession is under consideration,
whatever may be the nature of the property and regardless of the country wherein said property may be
found.

Art. 1039. Capacity to succeed is governed by the law of the nation of the decedent.

The law which governs Adoracion Campo's will is the law of Pennsylvania, U.S.A., which is the national
law of the decedent. Although the parties admit that the Pennsylvania law does not provide for legitimes
and that all the estate may be given away by the testatrix to a complete stranger, the petitioner argues
that such law should not apply because it would be contrary to the sound and established public policy
and would run counter to the specific provisions of Philippine Law.

It is a settled rule that as regards the intrinsic validity of the provisions of the will, as provided for by Article
16(2) and 1039 of the Civil Code, the national law of the decedent must apply.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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35. Testate Estate of the Deceased Mariano Molo Y Legaspi, Juana Juan Vda. De Molo v. Luz,
Gliceria and Cornelio Molo
G.R. No. L-2538; September 21, 1951
BAUTISTA ANGELO, J.:

FACTS:
Mariano Molo died intestate, survived by his wife, the herein petitioner Juana, and by his nieces and
nephew, the oppositors-appellants, Luz Gliceria and Cornelio, all surnamed Molo, who were the
legitimate children of the deceased brother of the testator. Mariano Molo left two wills, one executed on
August 1918 and another executed on June 1939. The later will executed in 1918.

Juana filed in the CFI of Rizal a petition seeking the probate of the will executed by the deceased on1939.
There being no opposition, the will was probated. However, upon petition filed by the herein oppositors,
the order of the court admitting the will to probate was set aside and the case was reopened. The court
rendered decision denying the probate of said will on the ground that the petitioner failed to prove that
the same was executed in accordance with law.

In view of the disallowance of the will executed, the widow on filed another petition for the probate of the
will executed by the deceased on August 1918. Again, the same oppositors filed an opposition to the
petition based on the ground that the will has been subsequently revoked.

ISSUE
Whether or not the revocatory clause contained in the 1939 Will is valid and has the effect of nullifying
1918 Will, despite the former being disallowed

HELD:
No. The revocatory clause contained in the 1939 Will is not valid and did not nullify the 1918 Will.

Granting for the sake of argument that the earlier will was voluntarily destroyed by the testator after the
execution of the second will, which revoked the first, could there be any doubt, under this theory, that
said earlier will was destroyed by the testator in the honest belief that it was no longer necessary because
he had expressly revoked it in his will of 1939? In other words, can we not say that the destruction of the
earlier will was but the necessary consequence of the testator's belief that the revocatory clause
contained in the subsequent will was valid and the latter would be given effect? If such is the case, then
it is our opinion that the earlier will can still be admitted to probate under the principle of “dependent
relative revocation.”

This doctrine is known as that of dependent relative revocation, and is usually applied where the testator
cancels or destroys a will or executes an instrument intended to revoke a will with a present intention to
make a new testamentary disposition as a substitute for the old, and the new disposition is not made or,
if made, fails of effect for same reason. The doctrine is n limited to the existence of some other document,
however, and has been applied where a will was destroyed as a consequence of a mistake of law. . . .
(68 C.J.P. 799).

The rule is established that where the act of destruction is connected with the making of another will so
as fairly to raise the inference that the testator meant the revocation of the old to depend upon the efficacy
of a new disposition intended to be substituted, the revocation will be conditional and dependent upon
the efficacy of the new disposition; and if, for any reason, the new will intended to be made as a substitute
is inoperative, the revocation fails and the original will remains in full force. (Gardner, pp. 232, 233.)

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
46
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This is the doctrine of dependent relative revocation. The failure of a new testamentary disposition upon
whose validity the revocation depends, is equivalent to the non-fulfillment of a suspensive conditions,
and hence prevents the revocation of the original will. But a mere intent to make at some time a will in
the place of that destroyed will not render the destruction conditional. It must appear that the revocation
is dependent upon the valid execution of a new will. (1 Alexander, p. 751; Gardner, p. 253.)

We hold therefore, that even in the supposition that the destruction of the original will by the testator could
be presumed from the failure of the petitioner to produce it in court, such destruction cannot have the
effect of defeating the prior will of 1918 because of the fact that it is founded on the mistaken belief that
the will of 1939 has been validly executed and would be given due effect. The theory on which this
principle is predicated is that the testator did not intend to die intestate. And this intention is clearly
manifest when he executed two wills on two different occasion and instituted his wife as his universal
heir. There can therefore be no mistake as to his intention of dying testate.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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36. The Heirs of the Late Jesus Fran and Carmen Mejia Rodriguez v. Hon. Bernardo ll. Salas,
Concepcion Mejia Espina and Maria Mejia Gandiongco
G.R. No. L-53546; June 25, 1992
DAVIDE, JR., J.:

FACTS:
Remedios M. Vda. de Tiosejo, a widow, died with neither descendants nor ascendants. Earlier, she
executed a last will and testament wherein she bequeathed to her collateral relatives all her properties,
and designated Rosario Tan or, upon the latter's death, Jesus Fran, as executor to serve without bond.
Fran filed a petition with the CFI of Cebu for the probate of Remedios' last will and testament. The probate
court rendered a decision admitting to probate the will of the testatrix, Remedios Mejia Vda. de Tiosejo,
and appointing Fran as executor thereof. Subsequently, a Project of Partition based on the dispositions
made in the will and signed by all the devisees and legatees. After the hearing on the Project of Partition,
the court issued its Order approving the same.

Private respondents then filed an Omnibus Motion for Reconsideration of the probate judgment and the
Order of partition, in said motion, they ask the court to declare the proceedings still open and admit their
opposition to the allowance of the will.

Respondent Judge then issued an Order setting for hearing the said Omnibus Motion for Reconsideration
Consequently, the instant petition was filed challenging the jurisdiction of the lower court in taking
cognizance of the Omnibus Motion for Reconsideration considering that the probate judgment and the
order approving the Project of Partition and terminating the proceedings had long become final and had
in fact been executed. Private respondents had long lost their right to appeal therefrom.

However, respondent Judge proceeded with the hearing of the Omnibus Motion for Reconsideration. The
respondent Judge likewise issued an Order on stating that unless he received a restraining order from
this Court within twenty (20) days therefrom, he will reopen Sp. Proc. No. 3309-R.

The Supreme Court issued a restraining order enjoining respondent Judge from reopening Sp. Proc. No.
3309-R. However, on the same date, before the restraining order was served on him; respondent Judge
issued the impugned order declaring the testamentary dispositions of the will void, finding the signature
of the late Remedios M. Vda. de Tiosejo to be a forgery, decreeing the reopening of Sp. Proc. No. 3309-
R and converting the same into an intestate proceeding. Hence, petitioners filed their Second
Supplemental Petition asking this Court to declare as null and void the Order of 2 June 1980 and, pending
such declaration, to restrain respondent Judge from enforcing the same.

ISSUE:
Whether or not Judge Salas committed grave abuse of discretion when he reopened the probate of the
will

HELD:
Yes. The Court held that the respondent Judge committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack
of jurisdiction when he granted the Omnibus Motion for Reconsideration and thereafter set aside the
probate judgment of 13 November 1972 in Sp. Proc. No. 3309-R, declared the subject will of the testatrix
a forgery, nullified the testamentary dispositions therein and ordered the conversion of the testate
proceedings into one of intestacy.

The probate judgment of 13 November 1972, long final and undisturbed by any attempt to unsettle it, had
inevitably passed beyond the reach of the court below to annul or set the same aside, by mere motion,

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
48
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

on the ground that the will is a forgery. Settled is the rule that the decree of probate is conclusive with
respect to the due execution of the will and it cannot be impugned on any of the grounds authorized by
law, except that of fraud, in any separate or independent action or proceeding.

The Court wished also to advert to the related doctrine which holds that final judgments are entitled to
respect and should not be disturbed; otherwise, there would be a wavering of trust in the courts.

Furthermore, private respondents had lost their right to file a petition for relief from judgment, it appearing
that their omnibus motion for reconsideration was filed exactly 6 years, 10 months and 22 days after the
rendition of the decision, and 6 years, 1 month and 13 days after the court issued the order approving
the Project of Partition, to which they voluntarily expressed their conformity through their respective
certifications, and closing the testate proceedings.

The Court also held that the annexing of the original will to the petition is not a jurisdictional requirement
is clearly evident in Section 1, Rule 76 of the Rules of Court which allows the filing of a petition for probate
by the person named therein regardless of whether or not he is in possession of the will, or the same is
lost or destroyed.

The availability of the will since 18 September 1972 for their examination renders completely baseless
the private respondents' claim of fraud on petitioner Fran's part in securing the withdrawal of their
opposition to the probate of the will. If indeed such withdrawal was conditioned upon Fran's promise that
the private respondents would be shown the will during the trial, why weren't the appropriate steps taken
by the latter to confront Fran about this promise before certifications of conformity to the project of partition
were filed?

Granting for the sake of argument that the non-fulfillment of said promise constitutes fraud, such fraud is
not of the kind which provides sufficient justification for a motion for reconsideration or a petition for relief
from judgment under Rule 37 and Rule 38, respectively, of the Rules of Court, or even a separate action
for annulment of judgment. It is settled that for fraud to be invested with, sufficiency, it must be extrinsic
or collateral to the matters involved in the issues raised during the trial which resulted in such judgment.

The non-distribution of the estate, which is vigorously denied by the petitioners, is not a ground for the
re-opening of the testate proceedings. A seasonable motion for execution should have been filed. In De
Jesus v. Daza, the Court ruled that if the executor or administrator has possession of the share to be
delivered, the probate court would have jurisdiction within the same estate proceeding to order him to
transfer that possession to the person entitled thereto. This is authorized under Section 1, Rule 90 of the
Rules of Court. However, if no motion for execution is filed within the reglementary period, a separate
action for the recovery of the shares would be in order. As the Court saw it, the attack of 10 September
1973 on the Order was just a clever ploy to give a semblance of strength and substance to the Omnibus
Motion for Reconsideration by depicting therein a probate court committing a series of fatal, substantive
and procedural blunders, which the Court find to be imaginary, if not deliberately fabricated.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

37. Teodoro Caneda, et. al. v. Court of Appeals and William Cabrera
G.R. No. 103554; May 28, 1993
REGALADO, J.:

FACTS:
Mateo Caballero, a widower without any children, executed a last will and testament before 3 attesting
witnesses. The said testator was duly assisted by his lawyer and a notary public in the preparation of that
last will.

The last will and testament of Mateo Caballero shows that it is comprised of three sheets all of which
have been numbered correlatively, with the left margin of each page thereof bearing the respective
signatures of the testator and the three attesting witnesses. The part of the will containing the
testamentary dispositions is expressed in the Cebuano-Visayan dialect and is signed at the foot thereof
by the testator. The attestation clause on the other hand, is recited in the English language and is likewise
signed at the end thereof by the three attesting witnesses hereto:

We, the undersigned attesting Witnesses, whose Residences and postal addresses appear on the
Opposite of our respective names, we do hereby certify that the Testament was read by him and the
testator, MATEO CABALLERO; has published unto us the foregoing Will consisting of THREE PAGES,
including the Acknowledgment, each page numbered correlatively in the letters on the upper part of each
page, as his Last Will and Testament and he has the same and every page thereof, on the spaces
provided for his signature and on the left hand margin, in the presence of the said testator and in the
presence of each and all of us.

Mateo Caballero himself filed a petition seeking the probate of his last will and testament. The testator
passed away before his petition could finally be heard by the probate court. One of the legatees named
in the will, sought his appointment as special administrator of the testator's estate and the probate of the
Testator’s will. The probate court granted the petition.

Petitioners opposed the probate of the Testator's will and the appointment of a special administrator for
his estate. They asserted that the will is null and void because its attestation clause is fatally defective
since it fails to specifically state that the instrumental witnesses to the will witnessed the testator signing
the will in their presence and that they also signed the will and all the pages thereof in the presence of
the testator and of one another. The CA affirmed that of the trial court, and ruled that the attestation
clause in the last will of Mateo Caballero substantially complies with Article 805 of the Civil Code. Hence
this appeal.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the will is valid

HELD:
No. Under the third paragraph of Article 805, the attestation clause should state (1) the number of the
pages used upon which the will is written; (2) that the testator signed, or expressly caused another to
sign, the will and every page thereof in the presence of the attesting witnesses; and (3) that the attesting
witnesses witnessed the signing by the testator of the will and all its pages, and that said witnesses also
signed the will and every page thereof in the presence of the testator and of one another.

The attestation clause herein assailed does not expressly state therein the circumstance that said
witnesses subscribed their respective signatures to the will in the presence of the testator and of each
other. The phrase "and he has signed the same and every page thereof, on the spaces provided for his

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
50
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

signature and on the left hand margin," obviously refers to the testator and not the instrumental witnesses
as it is immediately preceded by the words "as his Last Will and Testament." On the other hand, although
the words "in the presence of the testator and in the presence of each and all of us" may, at first blush,
appear to likewise signify and refer to the witnesses, it must, however, be interpreted as referring only to
the testator signing in the presence of the witnesses since said phrase immediately follows the words "he
has signed the same and every page thereof, on the spaces provided for his signature and on the left
hand margin." What is then clearly lacking is the statement that the witnesses signed the will and every
page thereof in the presence of the testator and of one another.

The absence of that statement required by law is a fatal defect or imperfection which must necessarily
result in the disallowance of the will. The aforestated defect in the attestation clause obviously cannot be
characterized as merely involving the form of the will or the language used therein which would warrant
the application of the substantial compliance rule, as contemplated in Article 809 of the Civil Code.
While it may be true that the attestation clause is indeed subscribed at the end thereof and at the left
margin of each page by the three attesting witnesses, it certainly cannot be conclusively inferred
therefrom that the said witness affixed their respective signatures in the presence of the testator and of
each other since the presence of said signatures only establishes the fact that it was indeed signed, but
it does not prove that the attesting witnesses did subscribe to the will in the presence of the testator and
of each other.

The rule on substantial compliance in Article 809 cannot be revoked or relied on by respondents since it
presupposes that the defects in the attestation clause can be cured or supplied by the text of the will or
a consideration of matters apparent therefrom which would provide the data not expressed in the
attestation clause or from which it may necessarily be gleaned or clearly inferred that the acts not stated
in the omitted textual requirements were actually complied within the execution of the will. In other words,
defects must be remedied by intrinsic evidence supplied by the will itself.

In the case at bar, contrarily, proof of the acts required to have been performed by the attesting witnesses
can be supplied by only extrinsic evidence thereof, since an overall appreciation of the contents of the
will yields no basis whatsoever from with such facts may be plausibly deduced. What private respondent
insists on are the testimonies of his witnesses alleging that they saw the compliance with such
requirements by the instrumental witnesses, oblivious of the fact that he is thereby resorting to extrinsic
evidence to prove the same and would accordingly be doing by the indirection what in law he cannot do
directly.

Omissions which can be supplied by an examination of the will itself, without the need of resorting to
extrinsic evidence, will not be fatal and, correspondingly, would not obstruct the allowance to probate of
the will being assailed. However, those omissions which cannot be supplied except by evidence aliunde
would result in the invalidation of the attestation clause and ultimately, of the will itself.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
51
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38. Erlinda A. Agapay v. Carlina (Cornelia) V. Palang and Herminia P. Dela Cruz
G.R. No. 116668; July 28, 1997
ROMERO, J.:

FACTS:
Miguel Palang while his marriage with Carlina Palang was still subsisting, contracted his second marriage
with nineteen-year-old Erlinda Agapay. During their cohabitation, a riceland and a house and lot was
purchased by Miguel and Erlinda. Eventually, Miguel and Erlinda's cohabitation produced a son,
Kristopher A. Palang.

After the death of Miguel, Carlina Palang and her daughter Herminia Palang de la Cruz instituted an
action for recovery of ownership of the two properties against Erlinda Agapay.

After trial on the merits, the lower court rendered its decision declaring that there was little evidence to
prove that the subject properties pertained to the conjugal property of Carlina and Miguel Palang and
went on to provide for the intestate shares of the parties, particularly of Kristopher Palang, Miguel's
illegitimate son.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the lower court erred in declaring that Kristopher A. Palang is entitled to inherit from
Miguel's estate

HELD:
YES. The trial court erred in making pronouncements regarding Kristopher's heirship and filiation
inasmuch as questions as to who are the heirs of the decedent, proof of filiation of illegitimate children
and the determination of the estate of the latter and claims thereto should be ventilated in the proper
probate court or in a special proceeding instituted for the purpose and cannot be adjudicated in the instant
ordinary civil action which is for recovery of ownership and possession.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
52
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

39. Manuel G. Reyes v. Court of Appeals


G.R. No. 124099; October 30, 1997
TORRES, JR., J.:

FACTS:
Torcuato J. Reyes executed his last will and testament declaring therein in part, to wit: II. I give and
bequeath to my wife Asuncion Oning R. Reyes the following specified properties. Thereafter, Reyes died
and private respondent filed a petition for probate of the will before the RTC.

The recognized natural children of decedent filed an opposition with the following allegations: a) that the
last will and testament of Reyes was not executed and attested in accordance with the formalities of
law.The opposition further averred that Reyes was never married to and could never marry Asuncion
Reyes, the woman he claimed to be his wife in the will, because the latter was already married to Lupo
Ebarle who was still then alive and their marriage was never annulled. Thus Asuncion can not be a
compulsory heir for her open cohabitation with Reyes was violative of public morals.

RTC declared that the will was executed in accordance with the formalities prescribed by law. It, however,
ruled that Asuncion Reyes, based on the testimonies of the witnesses, was never married to the
deceased Reyes, and, therefore, their relationship was an adulterous one. However, CA promulgated
the assailed decision which affirmed the trial court’ s decision admitting the will for probate. Said
declarations are not sufficient to destroy the presumption of marriage. Nor is it enough to overcome the
very declaration of the testator that Asuncion Reyes is his wife.

Petitioners contend that the findings and conclusion of the CA was contrary to law, public policy and
evidence on record. Torcuato Reyes and Asuncion Oning Reyes were collateral relatives up to the fourth
civil degree. Witness Gloria Borromeo testified that Oning Reyes was her cousin as her mother and the
latters father were sister and brother. They were also nieces of the late Torcuato Reyes. Thus, the
purported marriage of the deceased Reyes and Oning Reyes was void ab initio as it was against public
policy pursuant to Article 38 (1) of the Family Code. Petitioners further alleged that Oning Reyes was
already married to Lupo Ebarle at the time she was cohabiting with the testator hence, she could never
contact any valid marriage with the latter. Petitioners argued that the testimonies of the witnesses as well
as the personal declaration of the testator, himself, were sufficient to destroy the presumption of marriage.
To further support their contention, petitioners attached a copy of the marriage certificate of Asuncion
Reyes and Lupo Ebarle.

ISSUE:
Whether or not, in the case at bar, the court in probate proceedings are limited to pass only upon the
extrinsic validity of the will sought to be probated

HELD:
No. As a general rule, courts in probate proceedings are limited to pass only upon the extrinsic validity
of the will sought to be probated. The intrinsic validity is not considered since the consideration thereof
usually comes only after the will has been proved and allowed. There are, however, notable
circumstances wherein the intrinsic validity was first determined as when the defect of the will is apparent
on its face and the probate of the will may become a useless ceremony if it is intrinsically invalid. The
intrinsic validity of a will may be passed upon because practical considerations demanded it as when
there is preterition of heirs or the testamentary provisions are doubtful legality. Where the parties agree
that the intrinsic validity be first determined, the probate court may also do so. Parenthetically, the rule
on probate is not inflexible and absolute. Under exceptional circumstances, the probate court is not
powerless to do what the situation constrains it to do and pass upon certain provisions of the will.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
53
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

The case at bar arose from the institution of the petition for the probate of the will of the late Torcuato
Reyes. As a result, the declaration of the testator that Asuncion Oning Reyes was his wife did not have
to be scrutinized during the probate proceedings. The propriety of the institution of Oning Reyes as one
of the devisees/legatees already involved inquiry on the wills intrinsic validity and which need not be
inquired upon by the probate court.

The RCT erroneously invoked the ruling in Nepomuceno v. Court of Appeals (139 SCRA 206) in the
instant case. In the case aforesaid, the testator himself, acknowledged his illicit relationship with the
devisee This case is different from the Nepomuceno case. Testator Torcuato Reyes merely stated in his
will that he was bequeathing some of his personal and real properties to his wife, Asuncion Oning Reyes.
There was never an open admission of any illicit relationship. In the case of Nepomuceno, the testator
admitted that he was already previously married and that he had an adulterous relationship with the
devisee.

We agree with the CA that the trial court relied on uncorroborated testimonial evidence that Asuncion
Reyes was still married to another during the time she cohabited with the testator. The testimonies of the
witnesses were merely hearsay and even uncertain as to the whereabouts or existence of Lupo Ebarle,
the supposed husband of Asuncion.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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40. Rolando Sanchez, et. al. v. Court of Appeals, Rosalia Lugod, et. al.
G.R. No. 108947; September 29, 1997
PANGANIBAN, J.:

FACTS:
Spouses Juan Sanchez and Maria Villafranca have one legitimate child – Rosalia Lugod. Rosalia’s
legitimate children are Arturo Lugod, Evelyn Ranises, and Roberto Lugod. Juan Sanchez also has four
illegitimate children namely Rolando, Florida Mierly, Alfredo and Myrna. Following the death Juan
Sanchez, the illegitimate children of Juan filed a petition for letters of administration which petition was
opposed by Rosalia. The illegitimate and legitimate side of the family, however, executed a compromise
agreement wherein they agreed to divide the properties. The trial court still rendered a decision in
disregard of the parties’ compromise agreement and declared, among others that the deed of absolute
sale executed by Juan and Maria in favor of Rosalia and her children are simulated and fictitious.

ISSUE:
Does the probate court have the power to rule with finality on the validity of the deeds of sale?

HELD:
No. As a probate court, the trial court was exercising judicial functions when it issued its assailed
resolution. The said court had jurisdiction to act in the intestate proceedings involved in this case with the
caveat that, due to its limited jurisdiction, it could resolve questions of title only provisionally. It is hornbook
doctrine that "in a special proceeding for the probate of a will, the question of ownership is an extraneous
matter which the probate court cannot resolve with finality. This pronouncement no doubt applies with
equal force to an intestate proceeding as in the case at bar." In the instant case, the trial court-rendered
a decision declaring as simulated and fictitious all the deeds of absolute sale which, on July 26, 1963 and
June 26, 1967, Juan C. Sanchez and Maria Villafranca executed in favor of their daughter, Rosalia
Sanchez Lugod; and grandchildren, namely, Arturo S. Lugod, Evelyn S. Lugod and Roberto S. Lugod.
The trial court ruled further that the properties covered by the said sales must be subject to collation.
Citing Article 1409 (2) of the Civil Code, the lower court nullified said deeds of sale and determined with
finality the ownership of the properties subject thereof. In doing so, it clearly overstepped its Jurisdiction
as a probate court.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
55
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41. Ursulina Ganuelas, Metodio Ganuelas and Antonio Ganuelas v. Hon. Robert T. Cawed,
Leocadia G. Flores, Felicitacion G. Agtarap, Corazon G. Sipalay and Estate of Romana
Ganuelas De La Rosa, represented by Gregorio Dela Rosa
G. R. No. 123968; April 24, 2003
CARPIO-MORALES, J.:

FACTS:
On April 11, 1958, Celestina Ganuelas Vda. de Valin executed a Deed of Donation of Real Property
covering seven parcels of land in favor of her niece, petitioner Ursulina Ganuelas. On June 10, 1967,
Celestina executed a document denominated as Revocation of Donation purporting to set aside the deed
of donation. On August 18, 1967, Celestina died without issue and any surviving ascendants and siblings.
In 1982, Ursulina secured the corresponding tax declarations in her name over the donated properties
and refused to give private respondents any share in the produce of the properties. Private respondents
thus filed a complaint against Ursulina, alleging that the Deed of Donation was void because it was a
disposition mortis causa which failed to comply with the formalities of wills and testaments. Ursulina
alleged that the donation was inter vivos. The trial court held that the deed is a donation mortis causa.
Hence, the instant petition for review. Petitioners argue that the donation contained in the deed is inter
vivos as the main consideration for its execution was the donors affection for the donee rather than the
donors death.

ISSUE:
Is the donation inter vivos or mortis causa?

HELD:
It is a donation mortis causa. Crucial in the resolution of the issue is the determination of whether the
donor intended to transfer the ownership over the properties upon the execution of the deed. Donation
inter vivos differs from donation mortis causa in that in the former, the act is immediately operative even
if the actual execution may be deferred until the death of the donor, while in the latter, nothing is conveyed
to or acquired by the donee until the death of the donor-testator. In the donation subject of the present
case, there is nothing therein which indicates that any right, title or interest in the donated properties was
to be transferred to Ursulina prior to the death of Celestina. The phrase to become effective upon the
death of the DONOR admits of no other interpretation but that Celestina intended to transfer the
ownership of the properties to Ursulina on her death, not during her lifetime.

More importantly, the provision in the deed stating that if the donee should die before the donor, the
donation shall be deemed rescinded and of no further force and effect shows that the donation is a
postmortem disposition. As stated in a long line of cases, one of the decisive characteristics of a donation
mortis causa is that the transfer should be considered void if the donor should survive the donee.
Moreover, the deed contains an attestation clause expressly confirming the donation as mortis causa.
To classify the donation as inter vivos simply because it is founded on considerations of love and affection
is erroneous. That the donation was prompted by the affection of the donor for the donee and the services
rendered by the latter is of no particular significance in determining whether the deed constitutes a
transfer inter vivos or not, because a legacy may have an identical motivation. In other words, love and
affection may also underline transfers mortis causa.

As the subject deed then is in the nature of a mortis causa disposition, the formalities of a will under
Article 728 of the Civil Code should have been complied with, failing which the donation is void and
produces no effect. The petition is hereby DENIED.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
56
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42. The Incompetent, Carmen Caniza, represented by her legal guardian, Amparo Evangelista v.
Court of Appeals (Special First Division), Pedro Estrada and his wife, Leonora Estrada
G.R. No. 110427; February 24, 1997
NARVASA, C.J.:

FACTS:
Being then ninety-four (94) years of age, Carmen Caniza was declared incompetent by judgment in a
guardianship proceeding instituted by her niece, Amparo A. Evangelista. Caniza was the owner of a
house and lot. Her guardian Amparo Evangelista commenced a suit to eject the spouses Pedro and
Leonora Estrada from said premises.

The complaint was later amended to identify the incompetent Caniza as plaintiff, suing through her legal
guardian, Amparo Evangelista. The amended Complaint pertinently alleged that plaintiff Caniza was the
absolute owner of the property in question; that out of kindness, she had allowed the Estrada Spouses,
their children, grandchildren and sons-in-law to temporarily reside in her house, rent-free; that Caniza
already had urgent need of the house on account of her advanced age and failing health, "so funds could
be raised to meet her expenses for support, maintenance and medical treatment;" among others.

The defendants declared that they had been living in Caniza's house since the 1960's; that in
consideration of their faithful service they had been considered by Caniza as her own family, and the
latter had in fact executed a holographic will by which she "bequeathed" to the Estradas the house and
lot in question. The Estradas insist that the devise of the house to them by Caniza clearly denotes her
intention that they remain in possession thereof, and legally incapacitated her judicial guardian, Amparo
Evangelista, from evicting them therefrom, since their ouster would be inconsistent with the ward's will.
Such will has not been submitted for probate.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the alleged will may be given effect

HELD:
No. A will is essentially ambulatory; at any time prior to the testator's death, it may be changed or revoked;
and until admitted to probate, it has no effect whatever and no right can be claimed thereunder, the law
being quite explicit: "No will shall pass either real or personal property unless it is proved and allowed in
accordance with the Rules of Court" An owner's intention to confer title in the future to pers ons possessing
property by his tolerance, is not inconsistent with the former's taking back possession in the meantime
for any reason deemed sufficient. And that in this case there was sufficient cause for the owner's
resumption of possession is apparent: she needed to generate income from the house on account of the
physical infirmities afflicting her, arising from her extreme age.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
57
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43. Joseph Cua v. Gloria A. Vargas, et. al.


G.R. No. 156536; October 31, 2006
AZCUNA, J.:

FACTS:
A parcel of residential land with an area of 99 square meters was left behind by the late Paulina Vargas.
On February 4, 1994, a notarized Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs was executed by and among
Paulina Vargas' heirs, namely Ester, Visitacion, Juan, Zenaida, Rosario, Andres, Gloria, Antonina, and
Florentino, partitioning and adjudicating unto themselves the lot in question, each one of them getting a
share of 11 square meters. Florentino, Andres, Antonina and Gloria, however, did not sign the document.
The Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs was published in the Catanduanes Tribune for three
consecutive weeks.

On November 15, 1994, an Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs with Sale was again executed by and
among the same heirs over the same property and also with the same sharings. Once more, only Ester,
Visitacion, Juan, Zenaida and Rosario signed the document and their respective shares totaling 55
square meters were sold to Joseph Cua, petitioner herein. After knowing of the sale of the 55 square
meters to petitioner, Gloria tried to redeem the property from petitioner. When the offer to redeem was
refused, Gloria filed a case for annulment of Extra Judicial Settlement and Legal Redemption of the lot.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the heirs are deemed constructively notified and bound, regardless of their failure to
participate therein, by an extrajudicial settlement and partition of estate when the extrajudicial settlement
and partition has been duly published

HELD:
NO, persons who do not participate or had no notice of an extrajudicial settlement will not be bound
thereby.

What is contemplated in Section 1 or Rule 74 is a notice that has been sent out or issued before any
deed of settlement and/or partition is agreed upon (i.e., a notice calling all interested parties to participate
in the said deed of extrajudicial settlement and partition), and not after such an agreement has already
been executed as what happened in the instant case with the publication of the first deed of extrajudicial
settlement among heirs.

The publication of the settlement does not constitute constructive notice to the heirs who had no
knowledge or did not take part in it because the same was notice after the fact of execution. The
requirement of publication is geared for the protection of creditors and was never intended to deprive
heirs of their lawful participation in the decedent's estate. In this connection, the records of the present
case confirm that respondents never signed either of the settlement documents, having discovered their
existence only shortly before the filing of the present complaint. Following Rule 74, these extrajudicial
settlements do not bind respondents, and the partition made without their knowledge and consent is
invalid insofar as they are concerned.

This is not to say, though, that respondents' co-heirs cannot validly sell their hereditary rights to third
persons even before the partition of the estate. The heirs who actually participated in the execution of
the extrajudicial settlements, which included the sale to petitioner of their pro indiviso shares in the subject
property, are bound by the same. Nevertheless, respondents are given the right to redeem these shares
pursuant to Article 1088 of the Civil Code. The right to redeem was never lost because respondents were
never notified in writing of the actual sale by their co-heirs.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

44. Cresencia Rodriguez, substituted by llagas v. Evangeline Rodriguez, et al.


G.R. No. 175720; September 11, 2007
YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:

FACTS:
Juanito executed a "Huling Habilin at Testamento" giving petitioner Cresenciana Tubo Rodriguez, his
live-in partner, apartments D and E, and his children Benjamin Rodriguez (the deceased husband of
respondent Evangeline Rodriguez), apartment A, respondent Buenaventura Rodriguez, apartment B,
and respondent Belen Rodriguez, apartment C. However, Juanito executed a Deed of Absolute Sale
(DOAS) over the property in favor of petitioner. Thus, a new TCT was issued in petitioner’s name.

Petitioner filed a complaint for unlawful detainer against the respondents, alleging that she is the lawful
and registered owner of the property. Petitioner also alleged that she allowed respondents Evangeline,
Buenaventura and Belen, out of kindness and tolerance, to personally occupy units A, B and D,
respectively. However, without her knowledge and consent, respondents separately leased the units to
Montano Magpantay, Mel Navarro and Socorro Escota, who despite repeated demands, failed and
refused to vacate the premises and to pay the rentals thereof. Respondents claimed ownership over the
subject property by succession. They alleged that while petitioner is the registered owner of the property,
the DOAS was simulated and void. And also, a Partition Agreement was entered into between petitioners
and respondents hence the former has no cause of action against the latte.

The MTC ruled in favor of the respondents. However, the RTC reversed the decision of the MTC. On
appeal, the CA reversed the RTC decision which ruled that the Huling Habilin at Testamento transmitted
ownership of the specific apartments not only to the respondents but also to the petitioner; and pursuant
thereto, the parties executed the Partition Agreement in accordance with the wishes of the testator.

ISSUE:
Did the respondents prove their right of possession based on the Huling Habilin at Testamento and the
Partition Agreement?

HELD:
NO. The Huling Habilin at Testamento and the Partition Agreement have no legal effect since the will has
not been probated.

Before any will can have force or validity it must be probated. This cannot be dispensed with and is a
matter of public policy. Article 838 of the Civil Code mandates that "[n]o will shall pass either real or
personal property unless it is proved and allowed in accordance with the Rules of Court."

Here, as the will was not probated, the Partition Agreement which was executed pursuant thereto cannot
be given effect. Thus, the fact that petitioner was a party to said agreement becomes immaterial in the
determination of the issue of possession. Moreover, at the time the deed of sale was executed in favor
of the petitioner, Juanito Rodriguez remained the owner thereof since ownership would only pass to his
heirs at the time of his death. Thus, as owner of the property, he had the absolute right to dispose of it
during his lifetime.

As the registered owner, petitioner had a right to the possession of the property, which is one of the
attributes of ownership. The Court emphasize, however, that the ruling on the issue of ownership is only
provisional to determine who between the parties has the better right of possession.

The Court reversed the decision of the CA and reinstated that of the RTC.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

IV. ARTICLES 840-885 (INSTITUTION OF HEIR, SUBSTITUTION OF HEIR, CONDITIONAL


TESTAMENTARY DISPOSITION & TESTAMENTARY DISPOSITION WITH A TERM)

45. Johnny S. Rabadilla v. Court of Appeals and Maria Marlena Coscoluella y Belleza Villacarlos
G.R. No. 113725; June 29, 2000
Purisima, J.:

FACTS:
• Aleja Belleza – testatrix
• Jorge Rabadilla – devisee of Lot No. 1392
• Johnny Rabadilla – Jorge’s successor-in-interest
• Alan Azurin – Johnny’s son-in-law; attorney-in-fact of Jorge’s heirs

The pertinent provisions of the Codicil appended to Aleja’s will are to wit:
“I give, leave and bequeath [Lot No. 1392] owned by me to [Jorge] x x x
“[S]hould [Jorge] die ahead of me, the aforementioned property and the rights which I shall set
forth hereinbelow, shall be inherited and acknowledged by the children and spouse of Jorge
Rabadilla.
“[S]hould I die and [Jorge] shall have already received the ownership of the [Lot], and also at the
time that the lease of Balbinito G. Guanzon of the said lot shall expire, [Jorge] shall have the
obligation until he dies, every year to give to Maria Marlina Coscolluela y Belleza, [75 piculs] of
Export sugar and [25] piculs of Domestic sugar, until [Marlina] dies.
“[S]hould [Jorge die], his heir to whom he shall give [Lot], shall have the obligation to still give
yearly, the sugar as specified to Marlina on December] of each year.”
“I [command that the Lot,] in the event that the one to whom I have left and bequeathed, and his
heir shall later sell, lease, mortgage this said Lot, the buyer, lessee, mortgagee, shall have also
the obligation to respect and deliver yearly [100] piculs of sugar to [Marlina], on each month of
December, [75] piculs of Export and [25] piculs of Domestic, until [Marlina] shall die, lastly should
the buyer, lessee or the mortgagee of this [Lot], not have respected my command in this [Codicil,
Marlina,] shall immediately seize this [Lot] from my heir and the latter’s heirs, and shall turn it
over to my near [descendants], and the latter shall then have the obligation to give the [100]
piculs of sugar until [Marlina] shall die. I further command in this [Codicil] that my heir and his
heirs of this [Lot], that they will obey and follow that should they decide to sell, lease, mortgage,
they cannot negotiate with others than my near descendants and my sister.”

Marlina brought a complaint before RTC Bacolod City to enforce the provisions of the Codicil. It was
alleged that the Lot was mortgaged to PNB and Republic Planters Bank and that the obligation to deliver
piculs of sugar was not complied with.

During the pre-trial, Marlina and Alan entered into a Memorandum of Agreement on the delivery of the
piculs of sugar. However, the same was not complied with.

The RTC dismissed the complaint holding that the complaint was prematurely filed.

The CA ordered the reconveyance of the title over the Lot from the estate of Jorge to the estate of Aleja.

ISSUES:
1. Is the testamentary institution of Jorge a modal institution under Article 882?
2. Is there a fideicommissary substitution in Marlina’s codicil under Article 863?

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

HELD:
1. Yes. Substitution is the designation by the testator of a person or persons to take the place of the heir
or heirs first instituted. Under substitutions in general, the testator may either (1) provide for the
designation of another heir to whom the property shall pass in case the original heir should die before
him/ her, renounce the inheritance or be incapacitated to inherit, as in a simple substitution, or (2) leave
his/ her property to one person with the express charge that it be transmitted subsequently to another or
others, as in a fideicommissary substitution. The Codicil sued upon contemplates neither of the two.

In simple substitutions, the second heir takes the inheritance in default of the first heir by reason of
incapacity, predecease or renunciation. In the case under consideration, the provisions of the Codicil do
not provide that should Jorge default due to predecease, incapacity or renunciation, the testatrix’s near
descendants would substitute him. What the Codicil provides is that, should Jorge or his heirs not fulfill
the conditions imposed in the Codicil, the property referred to shall be seized and turned over to the
testatrix's near descendants.

X x x The institution of an heir in the manner prescribed in Article 882 is what is known in the law of
succession as an institucion sub modo or a modal institution. In a modal institution, the testator states
(1) the object of the institution, (2) the purpose or application of the property left by the testator, or (3) the
charge imposed by the testator upon the heir. A “mode” imposes an obligation upon the heir or
legatee but it does not affect the efficacy of his rights to the succession. On the other hand, in a
conditional testamentary disposition, the condition must happen or be fulfilled in order for the heir to be
entitled to succeed the testator. The condition suspends but does not obligate; and the mode obligates
but does not suspend. To some extent, it is similar to a resolutory condition.

The testatrix intended that the Lot be inherited by Jorge. The testatrix imposed an obligation on the said
instituted heir and his successors-in-interest to deliver 100 piculs of sugar to Marlena during the lifetime
of the latter. However, the testatrix did not make Jorge’s inheritance and the effectivity of his institution
as a devisee, dependent on the performance of the said obligation. It is clear, though, that should the
obligation be not complied with, the property shall be turned over to the testatrix's near descendants. The
manner of institution of Jorge under the Codicil is evidently modal in nature because it imposes
a charge upon the instituted heir without, however, affecting the efficacy of such institution.

Then too, since testamentary dispositions are generally acts of liberality, an obligation imposed upon the
heir should not be considered a condition unless it clearly appears from the will itself that such was the
intention of the testator. In case of doubt, the institution should be considered as modal and not
conditional.

2. None. In a fideicommissary substitution, the first heir is strictly mandated to preserve the property and
to transmit the same later to the second heir. In the case under consideration, the instituted heir is in fact
allowed under the Codicil to alienate the property provided the negotiation is with the near descendants
or the sister of the testatrix. Thus, a very important element of a fideicommissary substitution is lacking;
the obligation clearly imposing upon the first heir the preservation of the property and its transmission to
the second heir. Without this obligation to preserve clearly imposed by the testator in his will, there
is no fideicommissary substitution. Also, the near descendants’ right to inherit from the testatrix is not
definite. The property will only pass to them should Jorge or his heirs not fulfill the obligation to deliver
part of the usufruct to Marlena.

Another important element of a fideicommissary substitution is also missing here. Under Article 863, the
second heir or the fideicommissary to whom the property is transmitted must not be beyond one degree
from the first heir or the fiduciary. A fideicommissary substitution is therefore, void if the first heir is

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
61
DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

not related by first degree to the second heir. In the case under scrutiny, the near descendants are
not at all related to the instituted heir, Jorge.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

46. Teresita Bordalba v. Court of Appeals


G.R. No. 112443; January 25, 2002
YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:

FACTS:
The subject lot is part of a parcel of land originally owned by the late spouses Carmeno Jayme and
Margarita Espina de Jayme. In 1947, an extra-judicial partition was executed and the land was divided
into 3 parts. 1/3 was given to their grandchildren Nicanor Jayme and Asuncion Jayme-Baclay, the
predecessors-in-interest of the respondents; 1/3 was given to their daughter Elena Jayme Vda. de Perez,
the mother of petitioner Teresita Bordalba; and the remaining portion was adjudicated to an unidentified
party.

Elena tried to register in her name the land, including the part adjudicated to Nicanor, but the case was
dismissed for lack of interest of the parties. In 1979, Teresita applied for a free patent over the same lot,
which was granted. When the respondents found out, they filed a petition for the cancellation of the free
patent.

The RTC declared the free patent null and void since Teresita employed fraud in obtaining the same. It
declared respondents as the owner of the lot. However, the CA modified the ruling, holding that only 1/3
of the lot should be awarded to the respondents.

Petitioner assails the decision of the CA, claiming that private respondents are not legal heirs of Nicanor
Jayme and Asuncion Jayme-Baclay.

ISSUE:
Is a judicial declaration of heirship necessary before an heir may assert his right to the property of the
deceased?

HELD:
NO. Other than their bare allegations to dispute their heirship, no hard evidence was presented by them
to substantiate their allegations. Besides, in order that an heir may assert his right to the property of a
deceased, no previous judicial declaration of heirship is necessary.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S (AY 2017-2018)

47. Heirs of Ignacio Conti and Rosario Cuario v. Court of Appeals and Lydia S. Reyes as Attorney-
in-Fact of Josefina S. Reyes, Bernardita S. Palilio, Herminia S. Palilio, Remedios A. Sampayo,
Iluminada A. Sampayo, Enrico A. Sampayo, Carlos A. Sampayo, Generoso C. Sampayo, Myrna
C. Sampayo, Rosalino C. Sampayo, Manuel C. Sampayo, Delia A. Sampayo, Corazon C.
Sampayo, Nilo C. Sampayo, and Lolita A. Sampayo in her own behalf and as Attorney-in-Fact
of Norma A. Sampayo
G.R. No. 118464; December 21, 1998
BELLOSILLO, J.:

FACTS:
Lourdes Sampayo, predecessor-in-interest of private respondents, and Ignacio Conti are co-owners of
the property in litigation. After Sampayo died without issue, respondents filed an action for partition of
said property. Conti refused the partition on the ground that respondents failed to produce any document
to prove that they were the rightful heirs of Lourdes Sampayo.

On trial, respondents presented a witness who testified that they were indeed the only living relatives of
the late Sampayo and certificate of live birth establishing that their mother was Lydia Sempayo, sister of
the deceased.

The RTC, as affirmed by the CA, ruled in favor of respondents stating that a prior separate judicial
declaration of heirship was not necessary and that private respondents became the co-owners of the
portion of the property owned and registered in the name of Lourdes Sampayo upon her death and,
consequently, entitled to the immediate possession thereof and all other incidents/rights of ownership as
provided for by law, including the right to demand partition under Art. 777.

ISSUE:
Is the petitioner correct in arguing that there should be a prior separate judicial declaration of heirship
before the respondents can become co-owners of the property?

HELD:
No. A prior settlement of the estate is not essential before the heirs can commence any action originally
pertaining to the deceased. Succession is a mode of acquisition by virtue of which the property, rights
and obligations to the extent of the value of the inheritance of a person are transmitted through his death
to another or others either by his will or by operation of law. Legal or intestate succession takes place if
a person dies without a will, or with a void will, or one which has subsequently lost its validity. If there are
no descendants, ascendants, illegitimate children, or a surviving spouse, the collateral relatives shall
succeed to the entire estate of the decedent.

It was established during the trial that Lourdes died intestate and without issues. Private respondents as
sister, nephews and nieces now claim to be the collateral relatives of Lourdes. The pieces of evidence
adduced clearly preponderates to the right of the respondents to maintain the action of partition. Hence,
from the death of Lourdes Sampayo her rights as a co-owner, incidental to which is the right to ask for
partition at any time or to terminate the co-ownership, were transmitted to her rightful heirs. In so
demanding partition private respondents merely exercised the right originally pertaining to the decedent,
their predecessor-in-interest.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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V. ARTICLES 886-914 (LEGITIME)

48. Alicia E. Gala, et. al. v. Ellice Agro-Industrial Corp., et. al.
G.R. No. 156819; December 11, 2003
YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:

FACTS:
The spouses Manuel and Alicia Gala, their children Guia Domingo, Ofelia Gala, Raul Gala, and Rita
Benson, and their encargados Virgilio Galeon and Julian Jader formed and organized the Ellice Agro-
Industrial Corporation (Ellice). The Gala spouses transferred several parcels of land to Ellice as payment
for their subscriptions in the capital stock.

Subsequently, Guia Domingo, Ofelia Gala, Raul Gala, Virgilio Galeon and Julian Jader incorporated the
Margo Management and Development Corporation (Margo). Spouses Manuel and Alice thereafter
sold/transferred their respective shares directly to Margo or to other stockholders of Margo.

Later, respondents, as directors and officers of Margo and Ellice, filed against petitioners a petition for
accounting and restitution by the directors and officers for alleged mismanagement, diversion of funds,
financial losses and the dissipation of assets. In turn, petitioners initiated a complaint against respondents
praying for the nullification of the election of respondents as new directors and officers of both Margo and
Ellice, and for the return of all titles of real property in the name of Margo and Ellice.

Petitioners pray that the Court disregard the separate personalities of Ellice and Margo for the purpose
of treating all property purportedly owned by said corporations as property solely owned by the Gala
spouses. They claim, among others, that the corporations were illegal for depriving petitioners Rita
Benzon and Guia Domingo of their legitime from the estate of their father Manuel. They claim that
stockholdings in Ellice which the late Manuel Gala had assigned to them were insufficient to cover their
legitimes, since Benson was only given two shares while Domingo received only sixteen shares out of a
total number of 35,000 issued shares.

ISSUE:
Was the organization of respondent-corporation illegal for depriving petitioner Rita Benson of her
legitime?

HELD:
No. The organization of the respondent-corporation was not illegal.

The reliefs sought by petitioners should have been raised in a proceeding for settlement of estate, rather
than in the present intra-corporate controversy. If they are genuinely interested in securing that part of
their late father's property which has been reserved for them in their capacity as compulsory heirs, then
they should simply exercise their actio ad supplendam legitimam, or their right of completion of legitime.
Such relief must be sought during the distribution and partition stage of a case for the settlement of the
estate of Manuel Gala, filed before a court which has taken jurisdiction over the settlement of said estate.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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VI. ARTICLES 915-923 (DISINHERITANCE)

49. Dy Yiend Seangio, et. al. v. Amor Reyes


G.R. Nos. 140371-72; November 27, 2006
AZCUNA, J.:

FACTS:
Private respondents Alfredo Seangio et. al. filed a petition for the settlement of the intestate estate of the
late Segundo Seangio, and praying for the appointment of private respondent Elisa D. Seangio–Santos
as special administrator and guardian ad litem of petitioner Dy Yieng Seangio.

Petitioners Dy Yieng, Barbara and Virginia, all surnamed Seangio, opposed the petition. They contended
that Segundo left a holographic will, dated September 20, 1995, disinheriting one of the private
respondents, Alfredo Seangio, for cause. In view of the purported holographic will, petitioners averred
that in the event the decedent is found to have left a will, the intestate proceedings are to be automatically
suspended and replaced by the proceedings for the probate of the will. A petition for the probate of the
holographic will of Segundo, was filed by petitioners before the RTC.

Private respondents moved for the dismissal of the probate proceedings primarily on the ground that the
document purporting to be the holographic will of Segundo does not contain any disposition of the estate
of the deceased and thus does not meet the definition of a will under Article 783 of the Civil Code.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the document, Kasulatan ng Pag- alis ng Mana, executed by Segundo can be considered
as a holographic will

HELD:
Yes. Segundo’s document, although it may initially come across as a mere disinheritance instrument,
conforms to the formalities of a holographic will prescribed by law. It is written, dated and signed by the
hand of Segundo himself. An intent to dispose mortis causa] can be clearly deduced from the terms of
the instrument, and while it does not make an affirmative disposition of the latter’s property, the
disinheritance of Alfredo, nonetheless, is an act of disposition in itself. In other words, the disinheritance
results in the disposition of the property of the testator Segundo in favor of those who would succeed in
the absence of Alfredo.

Holographic wills, therefore, being usually prepared by one who is not learned in the law, as illustrated in
the present case, should be construed more liberally than the ones drawn by an expert, taking into
account the circumstances surrounding the execution of the instrument and the intention of the testator.
In this regard, the Court is convinced that the document, even if captioned as Kasulatan ng Pag-Aalis ng
Mana, was intended by Segundo to be his last testamentary act and was executed by him in accordance
with law in the form of a holographic will. Unless the will is probated, the disinheritance cannot be given
effect.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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VIII. ARTICLES 960-977 (LEGAL OR INTESTATE SUCCESSION – GENERAL PROVISIONS,


RELATIONSHIP & RIGHT OF REPRESENTATION)

50. Ofelia Hernando Bagunu v. Pastora Piedad


G.R. No. 140975; December 8, 2000
VITUG, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioner Ofelia Hernando Bagunu, moved to intervene in the Matter of the Intestate Proceedings of the
Estate of Augusto H. Piedad.

Augusto H. Piedad died without any direct descendants or ascendants. Respondent, Pastora Piedad, is
the maternal aunt of the decedent, a third-degree relative of the decedent, while petitioner is the daughter
of a first cousin of the deceased, or a fifth-degree relative of the decedent

Asserting entitlement to a share of the estate, she assailed the finality of the order of the trial court
awarding the entire estate to respondent contending that the proceedings were tainted with procedural
infirmities, including an incomplete publication of the notice of hearing, lack of personal notice to the heirs
and creditors, and irregularity in the disbursements of allowances and withdrawals by the administrator
of the estate.

Respondent sought the dismissal of the appeal on the thesis that the issues brought up on appeal only
involved pure questions of law.

The trial court denied the motion which was affirmed by the CA.

ISSUE:
Whether or not a collateral relative within the 5th degree has a legal interest in the intestate proceeding

HELD:
NO. The rule on proximity shall apply.

Article 962 provides that relatives nearest in degree to the decedent and excludes the more distant ones
except when and to the extent that the right of representation. By right of representation, a more distant
blood relative of a decedent is, by operation of law, "raised to the same place and degree" of relationship
as that of a closer blood relative of the same decedent.

In the direct line, right of representation is proper only in the descending, never in the ascending, line. In
the collateral line, the right of representation may only take place in favor of the children of brothers or
sisters of the decedent when such children survive with their uncles or aunts. Among collateral relatives,
except only in the case of nephews and nieces of the decedent concurring with their uncles or aunts, the
rule of proximity, is an absolute rule.

The right of representation does not apply to "other collateral relatives within the 5th civil degree" to which
group both petitioner and respondent belong. Accordingly, respondent being a relative within the 3rd civil
degree of the decedent excludes petitioner, a relative of the 5th degree, from succeeding ab intestato to
the estate of the decedent.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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51. In the matter of the intestate estates of the deceased Josefa Delgado v. Heirs of Marciana
Rustia Vda. De Damian
G.R. No. 155733; January 27, 2006
CORONA, J.:

FACTS:
The alleged heirs of Josefa Delgado
The deceased Josefa Delgado was the daughter of Felisa Delgado by one Lucio Campo. Aside from
Josefa, five other children were born to the couple, namely, Nazario, Edilberta, Jose, Jacoba, and
Gorgonio, all surnamed Delgado. Felisa Delgado was never married to Lucio Campo, hence, Josefa and
her full-blood siblings were all natural children of Felisa Delgado. However, Lucio Campo was not the
first and only man in Felisa Delgado’s life. Before him was Ramon Osorio with whom Felisa had a son,
Luis Delgado. Josefa Delgado died without a will. She was survived by Guillermo Rustia and some
collateral relatives, the petitioners herein. Several months later, Guillermo Rustia executed an affidavit of
self- adjudication of the remaining properties comprising her estate.

The marriage of Guillermo Rustia and Josefa Delgado


Sometime in 1917, Guillermo Rustia proposed marriage to Josefa Delgado but whether a marriage in
fact took place is disputed. According to petitioners, the two eventually lived together as husband and
wife but were never married. To prove their assertion, petitioners point out that no record of the contested
marriage existed in the civil registry. Moreover, a baptismal certificate naming Josefa Delgado as one of
the sponsors referred to her as "Señorita" or unmarried woman.

The alleged heirs of Guillermo Rustia


Guillermo Rustia and Josefa Delgado never had any children. With no children of their own, they took
into their home the youngsters Guillermina Rustia Rustia and Nanie Rustia. These children, never legally
adopted by the couple, were what was known in the local dialect as ampun-ampunan. During his life with
Josefa, however, Guillermo Rustia did manage to father an illegitimate child, the intervenor-respondent
Guillerma Rustia, with one Amparo Sagarbarria. More than a year after the death of Josefa Delgado,
Guillermo Rustia filed a petition for the adoption of their ampun-ampunan Guillermina Rustia. He stated
under oath "[t]hat he ha[d] no legitimate, legitimated, acknowledged natural children or natural children
by legal fiction." The petition was overtaken by his death on February 28, 1974. Like Josefa Delgado,
Guillermo Rustia died without a will. He was survived by his sisters Marciana Rustia vda. de Damian and
Hortencia Rustia-Cruz, and by the children of his predeceased brother Roman Rustia Sr., namely,
Josefina Rustia Albano, Virginia Rustia Paraiso, Roman Rustia, Jr., Sergio Rustia, Francisco Rustia and
Leticia Rustia Miranda.

ISSUES:
1. Who the legal heirs of the decedents Guillermo Rustia and Josefa Delgado are
2. Whether Guillermina and Nanie Rustia, the ampun-ampunan, can inherit from Guillermo Rustia
3. Whether Josefa Delgado’s half-brother, Luis Delgado, can inherit from her
4. May the petitioners and Guillermo Rustia inherit from Josefa Delgado?

HELD:
1. The Lawful Heirs Of Josefa Delgado
Felisa Delgado and Ramon Osorio were never married. Hence, all the children born to Felisa Delgado
out of her relations with Ramon Osorio and Lucio Campo, namely, Luis and his half-blood siblings
Nazario, Edilberta, Jose, Jacoba, Gorgonio and the decedent Josefa, all surnamed Delgado,were her
natural children.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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The Lawful Heirs Of Guillermo Rustia


Guillerma Rustia is an illegitimate child of Guillermo Rustia. As such, she may be entitled to successional
rights only upon proof of an admission or recognition of paternity. She, however, claimed the status of an
acknowledged illegitimate child of Guillermo Rustia only after the death of the latter on February 28, 1974
at which time it was already the new Civil Code that was in effect.

Under the new law, recognition may be compulsory or voluntary. Recognition is compulsory in any of the
following cases: (1) in cases of rape, abduction or seduction, when the period of the offense coincides
more or less with that of the conception; (2) when the child is in continuous possession of status of a
child of the alleged father (or mother) by the direct acts of the latter or of his family; (3) when the child
was conceived during the time when the mother cohabited with the supposed father; (4) when the child
has in his favor any evidence or proof that the defendant is his father. On the other hand, voluntary
recognition may be made in the record of birth, a will, a statement before a court of record or in any
authentic writing.

Intervenor Guillerma sought recognition on two grounds: first, compulsory recognition through the open
and continuous possession of the status of an illegitimate child and second, voluntary recognition through
authentic writing. In this case, intervenor Guillerma’s right to claim compulsory acknowledgment
prescribed upon the death of Guillermo Rustia on February 28, 1974. The claim of voluntary recognition
must likewise fail. The failure to present the original signed manuscript was fatal to her claim.

The same misfortune befalls the ampun-ampunan, Guillermina Rustia Rustia, who was never adopted in
accordance with law. Although a petition for her adoption was filed by Guillermo Rustia, it never came to
fruition and was dismissed upon the latter’s death.

Premises considered, we rule that two of the claimants to the estate of Guillermo Rustia, namely,
intervenor Guillerma Rustia and the ampun-ampunan Guillermina Rustia Rustia, are not lawful heirs of
the decedent. Under Article 1002 of the new Civil Code, if there are no descendants, ascendants,
illegitimate children, or surviving spouse, the collateral relatives shall succeed to the entire estate of the
deceased. Therefore, the lawful heirs of Guillermo Rustia are the remaining claimants, consisting of his
sisters, nieces and nephews.

Since Josefa Delgado had heirs other than Guillermo Rustia, Guillermo could not have validly adjudicated
Josefa’s estate all to himself.

2. No. Adoption is a juridical act, a proceeding in rem, which [created] between two persons a relationship
similar to that which results from legitimate paternity and filiation. Only an adoption made through the
court, or in pursuance with the procedure laid down under Rule 99 of the Rules of Court is valid in this
jurisdiction. It is not of natural law at all, but is wholly and entirely artificial. To establish the relation, the
statutory requirements must be strictly carried out, otherwise, the adoption is an absolute nullity. The fact
of adoption is never presumed, but must be affirmatively [proven] by the person claiming its existence.

3. Yes. The law prohibits reciprocal succession between illegitimate children and legitimate children of
the same parent, even though there is unquestionably a tie of blood between them. It seems that to allow
an illegitimate child to succeed ab intestato (from) another illegitimate child begotten with a parent
different from that of the former, would be allowing the illegitimate child greater rights than a legitimate
child. Notwithstanding this, however, we submit that succession should be allowed, even when the
illegitimate brothers and sisters are only of the half-blood. The reason impelling the prohibition on
reciprocal successions between legitimate and illegitimate families does not apply to the case under
consideration. That prohibition has for its basis the difference in category between illegitimate and

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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legitimate relatives. There is no such difference when all the children are illegitimate children of the same
parent, even if begotten with different persons. They all stand on the same footing before the law, just
like legitimate children of half-blood relation. We submit, therefore, that the rules regarding succession of
legitimate brothers and sisters should be applicable to them. Full blood illegitimate brothers and sisters
should receive double the portion of half-blood brothers and sisters; and if all are either of the full blood
or of the half-blood, they shall share equally.

Here, the above-named siblings of Josefa Delgado were related to her by full-blood, except Luis Delgado,
her half-brother. Nonetheless, since they were all illegitimate, they may inherit from each other.
Accordingly, all of them are entitled to inherit from Josefa Delgado.

4. Yes. Under Article 972 of the new Civil Code, the right of representation in the collateral line takes
place only in favor of the children of brothers and sisters (nephews and nieces). Consequently, it cannot
be exercised by grandnephews and grandnieces. Therefore, the only collateral relatives of Josefa
Delgado who are entitled to partake of her intestate estate are her brothers and sisters, or their children
who were still alive at the time of her death on September 8, 1972. They have a vested right to participate
in the inheritance. The records not being clear on this matter, it is now for the trial court to determine who
were the surviving brothers and sisters (or their children) of Josefa Delgado at the time of her death.
Together with Guillermo Rustia, they are entitled to inherit from Josefa Delgado in accordance with Article
1001 of the new Civil Code. Hence, the petitioners and Guillermo Rustia may inherit from Josefa Delgado.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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IX. ARTICLES 978-994 (DESCENDING DIRECT LINE, ASCENDING DIRECT LINE, ILLEGITIMATE
CHILDREN)

52. Olivia Pascual and Hermes Pascual v. Esperanze Pascual-Bautista, et. al.
G.R. No. 84240; March 25, 1992
PARAS, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioners Olivia and Hermes both surnamed Pascual are the acknowledged natural children of the late
Eligio Pascual, the latter being the full blood brother of the decedent Don Andres Pascual.

Don Andres Pascual died intestate on October 12, 1973 without any issue, legitimate, acknowledged
natural, adopted or spurious children and was survived by the following:
a) Adela Soldevilla de Pascual, surviving spouses;
b) Children of Wenceslao Pascual, Sr., a brother of the full blood of the deceased, to wit: xxx
c) Children of Pedro-Bautista, brother of the half blood of the deceased, to wit: xxx
d) Acknowledged natural children of Eligio Pascual, brother of the full blood of the deceased, to wit: Olivia
S. Pascual and Hermes S. Pascual
e) Intestate of Eleuterio T. Pascual, a brother of the half blood of the deceased and represented by the
following: xxx

Adela Soldevilla de Pascual, the surviving spouse of the late Don Andres Pascual, filed with the RTC a
petition for the administration of the intestate estate of her late husband.

On December 18, 1973, Adela Soldevilla de Pascual filed a Supplemental Petition to the Petition for
letters of Administration, where she expressly stated that Olivia Pascual and Hermes Pascual, are among
the heirs of Don Andres Pascual.

On October 16, 1985, all the above-mentioned heirs entered into a COMPROMISE AGREEMENT, over
the vehement objections of the herein petitioners Olivia S. Pascual and Hermes S. Pascual, although
paragraph V of such compromise agreement provides, to wit:

This Compromise Agreement shall be without prejudice to the continuation of the above-entitled
proceedings until the final determination thereof by the court, or by another compromise agreement, as
regards the claims of Olivia Pascual and Hermes Pascual as legal heirs of the deceased, Don Andres
Pascual.

The said Compromise Agreement had been entered into despite the Manifestation/Motion of the
petitioners Olivia Pascual and Hermes Pascual, manifesting their hereditary rights in the intestate estate
of Don Andres Pascual, their uncle.

On September 30, 1987, petitioners filed their Motion to Reiterate Hereditary Rights (Rollo, pp. 113-114)
and the Memorandum in Support of Motion to reiterate Hereditary Rights (Rollo, pp. 116-130). The motion
was denied. CA affirmed RTC’s decision.

ISSUE:
Whether or not Article 992 of the Civil Code of the Philippines can be interpreted to exclude recognized
natural children from the inheritance of the deceased?

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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HELD:
NO. Petitioners contend that the term "illegitimate" children as provided in Article 992 must be strictly
construed to refer only to spurious children. On the other hand, private respondents maintain that herein
petitioners are within the prohibition of Article 992 of the Civil Code.

The issue in the case at bar, had already been laid to rest in Diaz v. IAC, supra, where this Court ruled
that:

Article 992 of the Civil Code provides a barrier or iron curtain in that it prohibits absolutely a succession
ab intestato between the illegitimate child and the legitimate children and relatives of the father or mother
of said legitimate child. They may have a natural tie of blood, but this is not recognized by law for the
purposes of Article 992. Between the legitimate family and illegitimate family there is presumed to be an
intervening antagonism and incompatibility. The illegitimate child is disgracefully looked down upon by
the legitimate family; the family is in turn hated by the illegitimate child; the latter considers the privileged
condition of the former, and the resources of which it is thereby deprived; the former, in turn, sees in the
illegitimate child nothing but the product of sin, palpable evidence of a blemish broken in life; the law does
no more than recognize this truth, by avoiding further grounds of resentment.

Eligio Pascual is a legitimate child but petitioners are his illegitimate children.

Applying the above doctrine to the case at bar, respondent IAC did not err in holding that petitioners
herein cannot represent their father Eligio Pascual in the succession of the latter to the intestate estate
of the decedent Andres Pascual, full blood brother of their father.

In their memorandum, petitioners insisted that Article 992 in the light of Articles 902 and 989 of the Civil
Code allows them (Olivia and Hermes) to represent Eligio Pascual in the intestate estate of Don Andres
Pascual.

On motion for reconsideration of the decision in Diaz v. IAC, this Court further elucidated the successional
rights of illegitimate children, which squarely answers the questions raised by the petitioner on this point.

The Court held:


Article 902, 989, and 990 clearly speaks of successional rights of illegitimate children, which rights are
transmitted to their descendants upon their death. The descendants (of these illegitimate children) who
may inherit by virtue of the right of representation may be legitimate or illegitimate. In whatever manner,
one should not overlook the fact that the persons to be represented are themselves illegitimate. The three
named provisions are very clear on this matter. The right of representation is not available to illegitimate
descendants of legitimate children in the inheritance of a legitimate grandparent. It may be argued, as
done by petitioners, that the illegitimate descendant of a legitimate child is entitled to represent by virtue
of the provisions of Article 982, which provides that "the grandchildren and other descendants shall inherit
by right of representation." Such a conclusion is erroneous. It would allow intestate succession by an
illegitimate child to the legitimate parent of his father or mother, a situation which would set at naught the
provisions of Article 992. Article 982 is inapplicable to the instant case because Article 992 prohibits
absolutely a succession ab intestato between the illegitimate child and the legitimate children and
relatives of the father or mother. It may not be amiss to state Article 982 is the general rule and Article
992 the exception.

The rules laid down in Article 982 that "grandchildren and other descendants shall inherit by right of
representation" and in Article 902 that the rights of illegitimate children . . . are transmitted upon their
death to their descendants, whether legitimate or illegitimate are subject to the limitation prescribed by

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
72
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Article 992 to the end that an illegitimate child has no right to inherit ab intestato from the legitimate
children and relatives of his father or mother. (Amicus Curiae's Opinion by former Justice Minister Ricardo
C. Puno, p. 12). Diaz v. Intermediate Appellate Court, 182 SCRA 427; pp. 431-432; [1990]).

Clearly the term "illegitimate" refers to both natural and spurious.

Finally under Article 176 of the Family Code, all illegitimate children are generally placed under one
category, which undoubtedly settles the issue as to whether or not acknowledged natural children should
be treated differently, in the negative.

It may be said that the law may be harsh but that is the law (DURA LEX SED LEX).

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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53. Benigno Manuel, et al. v. Hon. Nicodemo T. Ferrer, Presiding Judge, Regional Trial Court,
Branch 37, Lingayen, Pangasinan
G.R. No. 117246; August 21, 1995
VITUG, J.:

FACTS:
Juan Manuel (Juan), the illegitimate son of Antonio Manuel (Antonio), married Esperanza Gamba
(Esperanza). In consideration of the marriage, a donation propter nuptias over a parcel of land was
executed in favor of Juan. Two other parcels of land were later bought by Juan and registered in his
name. The couple were not blessed with a child of their own impelling them to take Modesta Manuel -
Baltazar (Modesta) into their fold and so raised her as their own "daughter".

Juan executed in favor of Estanislaoa Manuel a Deed of Sale Con Pacto de Retro (with a 10-year period
of redemption) over a one-half (1/2) portion of his land. Juan died intestate. Two years later Esperanza
also passed away.

Modesta claimed the three parcels of land and have the same registered under her name prompting
petitioners, the legitimate children of Antonio, to initiate a suit.

The trial court dismissed the complaint holding that petitioners, not being heirs ab intestato of their
illegitimate brother Juan Manuel, were not the real parties-in-interest to institute the suit.

Petitioners argue that they are the legal heirs over one-half of Juan's intestate estate (while the other half
would pertain to Juan's surviving spouse) under the provision of the last paragraph of Article 994 of the
Civil Code, providing thusly: “ In default of the father or mother, an illegitimate child shall be succeeded
by his or her surviving spouse, who shall be entitled to the entire estate. Xxx If the widow or widower
should survive with brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces, she or he shall inherit one-half of the
estate, and the latter the other half.”

Respondents, in turn, submit that Article 994 should be read in conjunction with Article 992 of the Civil
Code, which reads: “An illegitimate child has no right to inherit ab intestato from the legitimate children
and relatives of his father or mother; nor shall such children or relative inherit in the same manner from
the illegitimate child.“

ISSUE:
Are petitioners heirs ab intestato of their illegitimate brother Juan, hence, the real parties-in-interest to
institute the suit?

HELD:
No. Article 992, a basic postulate, enunciates what is so commonly referred to in the rules on succession
as the "principle of absolute separation between the legitimate family and the illegitimate family." The
doctrine rejects succession ab intestato in the collateral line between legitimate relatives, on the one
hand, and illegitimate relatives, on other hand, although it does not totally disavow such succession in
the direct line. Since the rule is predicated on the presumed will of the decedent, it has no application,
however, on testamentary dispositions.

This "barrier" between the members of the legitimate and illegitimate family in intestacy is explained by
a noted civilist. His thesis:

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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What is meant by the law when it speaks of brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces, as legal
or intestate heirs of an illegitimate child? It must be noted that under Art. 992 of the Code, there
is a barrier dividing members of the illegitimate family from members of the legitimate family. It is
clear that by virtue of this barrier, the legitimate brothers and sisters as well as the children,
whether legitimate or illegitimate, of such brothers and sisters, cannot inherit from the illegitimate
child. Consequently, when the law speaks of "brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces" as legal
heirs of an illegitimate child, it refers to illegitimate brothers and sisters as well as to the children,
whether legitimate or illegitimate, of such brothers and sisters.

The Court, too, has had occasions to explain this "iron curtain":

Article 992 of the New Civil Code . . . prohibits absolutely a succession ab intestato between the
illegitimate child and the legitimate children and relatives of the father or mother of said legitimate
child. They may have a natural tie of blood, but this is not recognized by law for the purposes of
Article 992. Between the legitimate family and the illegitimate family there is presumed to be an
intervening antagonism and incompatibility. The illegitimate child is disgracefully looked down
upon by the legitimate family; the legitimate family is, in turn, hated by the illegitimate child; the
latter considers the privileged condition of the former, and the resources of which it is thereby
deprived; the former, in turn, sees in the illegitimate child nothing but the product of sin, palpable
evidence of a blemish broken in life; the law does no more than recognize this truth, by avoiding
further grounds of resentment.

The rule in Article 992 has consistently been applied by the Court in several other cases. Thus, it has
ruled that where the illegitimate child had half-brothers who were legitimate, the latter had no right to the
former's inheritance; that the legitimate collateral relatives of the mother cannot succeed from her
illegitimate child; that a natural child cannot represent his natural father in the succession to the estate
of the legitimate grandparent; that the natural daughter cannot succeed to the estate of her deceased
uncle who is a legitimate brother of her natural father; and that an illegitimate child has no right to inherit
ab intestato from the legitimate children and relatives of his father. Indeed, the law on suc cession is
animated by a uniform general intent, and thus no part should be rendered inoperative by, but must
always be construed in relation to, any other part as to produce a harmonious whole.

In her answer to the complaint, Modesta candidly admitted that she herself is not an intestate heir of Juan
Manuel. She is right. A ward (ampon), without the benefit of formal (judicial) adoption, is neither a
compulsory nor a legal heir.

Therefore, petitioners, not being heirs ab intestato of their illegitimate brother Juan, are not entitled to the
inherit from the latter.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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54. Corazon Dezoller Tison and Rene R. Dezoller v. Court of Appeals and Teodora Domingo
G.R. No. 121027; July 31, 1997
REGALADO, J.:

FACTS:
The petitioners Corazon Tison and Rene Dezoller are niece and nephew of the deceased Tedora
Dezoller Guerrero, who appears to be the sister of their father Hermogenes Dezoller . The present action
for reconveyance involves a parcel of land with a house and apartment which was originally owned by
the spouses Martin Guerrero and Teodora Dezoller Guerrero. It. Teodora Dezoller Guerrero died on
March 5, 1983 without any ascendant or descendant, and was survived only by her husband, Martin
Guerrero, and herein petitioners. Petitioners' father, Hermogenes, died on October 3, 1973, hence they
seek to inherit from Teodora Dezoller Guerrero by right of representation.
The records reveal that upon the death of Teodora Dezoller Guerrero, her surviving spouse executed an
Affidavit of Extrajudicial Settlement adjudicating unto himself, allegedly as sole heir, the land in dispute.
Martin sold the lot to herein private respondent Teodora Domingo and thereafter.
Martin Guerrero died. Subsequently, herein petitioners filed an action for reconveyance claiming that they
are entitled to inherit one-half of the property in question by right of representation. Tedoro Domingo
however, attacks the legitimacy of Hermogenes.

ISSUE:
1. Whether or not a third person, not the father nor an heir, may attack the legitimacy of Hermogenes
2. Whether the petitioners are entitled to inherit one half of the property in question by right of
representation

HELD:
1. NO. The private respondent is not the proper party to impugn the legitimacy of herein petitioners. There
is no presumption of the law more firmly established and founded on sounder morality and more
convincing reason than the presumption that children born in wedlock are legitimate. And well settled is
the rule that the issue of legitimacy cannot be attacked collaterally.

Only the husband can contest the legitimacy of a child born to his wife. He is the one directly confronted
with the scandal and ridicule which the infidelity of his wife produces; and he should decide whether to
conceal that infidelity or expose it, in view of the moral and economic interest involved. It is only in
exceptional cases that his heir are allowed to contest such legitimacy. Outside of these cases, none —
even his heirs — can impugn legitimacy; that would amount to an insult to his memory.

2. YES. he following provisions of the Civil Code provide for the manner by which the estate of the
decedent shall be divided in this case, to wit:
Art. 975. When children of one or more brothers or sisters of the deceased survive,
they shall inherit from the latter by representation, if they survive with their uncles or
aunts. But if they alone survive, they shall inherit in equal portions.
Art. 995. In the absence of legitimate descendants and ascendants, and illegitimate
children and their descendants, whether legitimate or illegitimate, the surviving spouse
shall inherit the entire estate, without prejudice to the rights of brothers and sisters,
nephews and nieces, should there be any, under Article 1001.
Art. 1001. Should brothers and sisters or their children survive with the widow or
widower, the latter shall be entitled to one-half of the inheritance and the brothers and
sisters or their children to the other half.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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Upon the death of Teodora Dezoller Guerrero, one-half of the subject property was automatically
reserved to the surviving spouse, Martin Guerrero, as his share in the conjugal partnership. Applying the
aforequoted statutory provisions, the remaining half shall be equally divided between the widower and
herein petitioners who are entitled to jointly inherit in their own right. Hence, Martin Guerrero could only
validly alienate his total undivided three-fourths (3/4) share in the entire property to herein private
respondent. Resultantly, petitioners and private respondent are deemed co-owners of the property
covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. 374012 in the proportion of an undivided one-fourth (1/4) and
three-fourths (3/4) share thereof, respectively.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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55. Heirs of Pascasio Uriarte v. Court of Appeals and Benedicto Estrada


G.R. No. 116775; January 22, 1998
MENDOZA, J.:

FACTS:
Agatonica Arreza has a half-sister named Justa Arnaldo. Agatonica married Domingo Arnaldo and had
a son Benedicto Arnaldo.

The petitioners are Justa’s grandchildren,her relatives within the 5th degree of consanguinity from her
cousin Primitiva Arnaldo Uriarte. The other petitioners are Primitiva’s children and her brother Gregorio.

When Justa died, Benedicto filed a motion for the partition of her land. He claims that he is the sole
surviving heir of Justa. He opposed Pascasio Uriarte’s claim of being a tenant. Upon Pascasio’s death,
the heirs contested that the land originally came from their great granduncle, and only after then was it
given to Domingo (2/3) and Juan Arnaldo (1/3).

ISSUE:
Who among the petitioners are entitled to Justa’s estate?

HELD:
According to Article 962 of the Civil Code, in every inheritance, the relative nearest in degree excludes
the more distant ones, saving the right of representation when it properly takes place.

Benedicto, being the son of Justa’s half sister, is a third degree relative. On the other hand, the
defendants are the sons and daughters of Justa’s cousin, leaving them as a fifth degree relative. Thus,
Benedicto, being the closest relative, shall inherit. The fact that his mother is only a half-sister of Justa is
of no moment.

Petitioners misappreciate the relationship between Justa and private respondent. As already stated,
private respondent is the son of Justa’s half-sister Agatonica. He is therefore Justa’s nephew. A nephew
is considered a collateral relative who may inherit if no descendant, ascendant, or spouse survive the
decedent. That private respondent is only a half-blood relative is immaterial. This alone does not
disqualify him from being his aunt’s heir. As the Court of Appeals correctly pointed out, “The determination
of whether the relationship is of the full or half blood is important only to determine the extent of the share
of the survivors.”

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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56. Carolina Abad Gonzales v. Court of Appeals, Honoria Empaynado, Cecilia H. Abad, Marian H.
Abad and Rosemarie S. Abad
G.R. No. 117740; October 30, 1998
ROMERO, J.:

FACTS:
Petitioners Carolina Abad Gonzales, Dolores de Mesa Abad and Cesar de Mesa Tioseco sought the
settlement of the intestate estate of their brother, Ricardo de Mesa Abad. Petitioners claimed that they
were the only heirs of Ricardo de Mesa Abad, as the latter allegedly died a bachelor.

Private respondents Honoria Empaynado, Cecilia Abad Empaynado, and Marian Abad Empaynado filed
a motion to set aside proceedings. They alleged that Honoria had been the common-law wife of Ricardo
for twenty-seven years before his death, or from 1943 to 1971, and that during these period, their union
had produced two children, Cecilia and Marian. Private respondents also disclosed the existence of
Rosemarie, a child allegedly fathered by Ricardo Abad with another woman.

Petitioners, in contesting Cecilia, Marian and Rosemarie’s filiation, allege that the husband of Honoria,
Jose Libunao, was still alive when Cecilia and Marian were born. It is undisputed that prior to her
relationship with Ricardo Abad, Honoria Empaynado was married to Jose Libunao. But while private
respondents claim that Jose Libunao died in 1943, petitioners claim that the latter died sometime in 1971.

Petitioners presented in evidence the application for enrolment at Mapua Institute of Technology of
Honoraria’s children with Libunao in 1956 and 1958 claiming that the forms did not state that Libunao is
deceased. Additionally, petitioners presented the joint affidavit of Juan Quiambao and Alejandro Ramos
stating that to their knowledge Jose Libunao had died in 1971, leaving as his widow, Honoria Empaynado,
and that the former had been interred at the Loyola Memorial Park. Lastly, petitioners presented the
affidavit of Dr. Pedro Arenas, Ricardo Abad’s physician, declaring that in 1935, he had examined Ricardo
Abad and found him to be infected with gonorrhea, and that the latter had become sterile as a
consequence thereof.

Private Respondents presented Ricardo’s individual statements of income and as sets for the calendar
years 1958 and 1970, and in all his individual income tax returns for the years 1964 to 1970, he has
declared therein as his legitimate wife, Honoria Empaynado; and as his legitimate dependent children,
Cecilia, Marian and Rosemarie. Also presented were several insurance policies, savings accounts and
trust funds set up by Ricardo in favor of his three children.

ISSUE:
May the sisters of Ricardo inherit from the latter?

HELD:
NO. Petitioners failed to prove that Libunao died in 1971. On the other hand, private respondents were
able to prove that Cecilia, Rosemarie and Marian are recognized children of Ricardo.

The Civil Code provides in Art. 988 “In the absence of legitimate descendants or ascendants, the
illegitimate children shall succeed to the entire estate of the deceased.” And in Art. 1003 “If there are no
illegitimate children, or a surviving spouse, the collateral relatives shall succeed to the entire estate of
the deceased in accordance with the following articles.”

Hence, Petitioners are precluded from inheriting the estate of their brother.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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X. ARTICLES 995-1014 (SURVIVING SPOUSE, COLLATERAL RELATIVES, THE STATE)

57. Arnelito Adlawan v. Emeterio M. Adlawan and Narcisa M. Adlawan


G.R. No. 161916; January 20, 2006
YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:

FACTS:
The instant ejectment suit stemmed from the parties dispute over Lot 7226 and the house built thereon,
covered by TCT registered in the name of the late Dominador. In his complaint, petitioner claimed that
he is an illegitimate child of Dominador who died without any other issue. He executed an affidavit
adjudicating to himself Lot 7226 and the house built thereon. Out of respect to respondents who are the
siblings of his father, he granted their plea to occupy the subject property provided they would vacate the
same should his need for the property arise. Later, he verbally requested respondents to vacate the
house and lot, but they refused and filed instead an action for quieting of title. Petitioner, thus, filed the
instant case. On the other hand, respondents Narcisa and Emeterio stressed that they have been
occupying Lot 7226 and the house standing thereon since birth. They alleged that Lot 7226 was originally
registered in the name of their parents, spouses Ramon and Oligia. The spouses had 9 children including
the late Dominador and respondents. The spouses needed money to finance the renovation of their
house. Since they were not qualified to obtain a loan, they transferred ownership of Lot 7226 in the name
of their son Dominador who was the only one in the family who had a college education. By virtue of a
simulated deed of sale, title was issued to Dominador which enabled him to secure a loan with Lot 7226
as collateral. Respondents also argued that even if petitioner is indeed Dominador’s illegitimate son, his
right to succeed is doubtful because Dominador was survived by his wife, Graciana, thus, he cannot
institute the ejectment suit alone.

ISSUE:
Can petitioner validly maintain the instant case for ejectment?

HELD:
NO. While it is true that the deed of sale validly transferred title to Dominador and that petitioner is his
illegitimate son who inherited ownership of the questioned lot, the Court stressed the fact that the theory
of succession invoked by petitioner would end up proving that he is not the sole owner of Lot 7226. This
is so because Dominador was survived not only by petitioner but also by his legal wife, Graciana, who
died 10 years after the demise of Dominador. By intestate succession, Graciana and petitioner became
co-owners of Lot 7226. The death of Graciana did not make petitioner the absolute owner of Lot 7226
because the share of Graciana passed to her relatives by consanguinity and not to petitioner with whom
she had no blood relations. Moreover, there is no merit in petitioner’s claim that he has the legal
personality to file the present unlawful detainer suit because the ejectment of respondents would benefit
not only him but also his alleged co-owners. Petitioner filed the instant case to acquire possession of the
property. If granted, he alone will gain possession of the lot to the exclusion of the heirs of Graciana.
Hence, petitioner cannot successfully capitalize on the alleged benefit to his co-owners. Incidentally, it
should be pointed out that in default of the said heirs of Graciana, whom petitioner labeled as fictitious
heirs, the State will inherit her share and will thus be petitioner’s co-owner entitled to possession and
enjoyment of the property.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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XII. ARTICLES 1024-1057 (CAPACITY TO SUCEED BY WILL OR BY INTESTACY, ACCEPTANCE


& REPUDIATION OF THE INHERITANCE)

58. Michael C. Guy v. Court of Appeals


G.R. No. 163707; September 15, 2006
YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:

FACTS:
Private respondent-minors Karen and Kamille Oanes Wei, represented by their mother Remedios Oanes,
filed a petition for letters of administration, for the settlement of the intestate estate of Sima Wei (a.k.a.
Rufino Guy Susim). They allege that they are the duly acknowledged illegitimate children of Sima Wei,
hence, they are entitled to their share in Sima Wei’s estate. Petitioner Michael Guy, and his co-heirs (his
mother Shirley Guy and siblings) filed a motion to dismiss the petition alleging, among others, that private
respondents' claim had been paid, waived, abandoned or otherwise extinguished by reason of Remedios'
Release and Waiver of Claim stating that in exchange for the financial (P300,000) and educational
assistance (plan) received from petitioner, Remedios and her minor children discharge the estate of Sima
Wei from any and all liabilities.

The RTC denied the motion to dismiss, ruling that while the Release and Waiver of Claim was signed by
Remedios, it had not been established that she was the duly constituted guardian of her minor daughters.
Thus, no renunciation of right occurred. Such decision was affirmed by the CA.

ISSUE:
Whether the Release and Waiver of Claim precludes private respondents from claiming their
successional rights in the estate of their deceased father.

HELD:
NO, the Release and Waiver of Claim executed by Remedios, does not bar private respondents from
claiming their successional rights. To be valid and effective, a waiver must be couched in clear and
unequivocal terms which leave no doubt as to the intention of a party to give up a right or benefit which
legally pertains to him. A waiver may not be attributed to a person when its terms do not explicitly and
clearly evince an intent to abandon a right.

The Release and Waiver of Claim does not state with clarity the purpose of its execution. It merely states
that Remedios received P300,000 and an educational plan for her minor daughters "by way of financial
assistance and in full settlement of any and all claims of whatsoever nature and kind x x x against the
estate of the late Rufino Guy Susim." Considering that the document did not specifically mention private
respondents' hereditary share in the estate of Sima Wei, it cannot be construed as a waiver of
successional rights.

Moreover, even assuming that Remedios truly waived the hereditary rights of private respondents, such
waiver will not bar the latter's claim. Article 1044 of the Civil Code states that “Any inheritance left to
minors or incapacitated persons may be accepted by their parents or guardians. Parents or guardians
may repudiate the inheritance left to their wards only by judicial authorization.”

Parents and guardians may not therefore repudiate the inheritance of their wards without judicial
approval. This is because repudiation amounts to an alienation of property which must pass the court's
scrutiny in order to protect the interest of the ward. Not having been judicially authorized, the Release
and Waiver of Claim in the instant case is void and will not bar private respondents from asserting their
rights as heirs of the deceased.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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Furthermore, waiver is the intentional relinquishment of a known right. Where one lacks knowledge of a
right, there is no basis upon which waiver of it can rest. Ignorance of a material fact negates waiver, and
waiver cannot be established by a consent given under a mistake or misapprehension of fact.

Here, private respondents could not have possibly waived their successional rights because they are yet
to prove their status as acknowledged illegitimate children of the deceased. Petitioner himself has
consistently denied that private respondents are his co-heirs. It would thus be inconsistent to rule that
they waived their hereditary rights when petitioner claims that they do not have such right. Hence,
petitioner's invocation of waiver on the part of private respondents must fail.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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XIII. ARTICLES 1058-1077 (EXECUTORS & ADMINISTRATORS, COLLATION)

59. Natividad Nazareno v. Court of Appeals


G.R. No. 138842; October 18, 2000
MENDOZA, J.:

FACTS:
Maximino Nazareno, Sr. and Aurea Poblete were husband and wife. Aurea died on April 15, 1970, while
Maximino, Sr. died on December 18, 1980. They had five children, namely, Natividad, Romeo, Jose,
Pacifico, and Maximino, Jr. Natividad and Maximino, Jr. are the petitioners in this case, while the estate
of Maximino, Sr., Romeo, and his wife Eliza Nazareno are the respondents. After the death of Maximino,
Sr., Romeo filed an intestate case in the CFI. In the course of the intestate proceedings, Romeo
discovered that his parents had executed several deeds of sale conveying a number of real properties in
favor of his sister, Natividad. Among the lots covered by the above Deed of Sale is Lot 3-B which had
been occupied by Romeo, his wife Eliza, and by Maximino, Jr. since 1969. Unknown to Romeo, Natividad
sold Lot 3-B to Maximino, Jr. Romeo sought the declaration of nullity of the sale for lack of consideration.

Natividad and Maximino, Jr. filed a third-party complaint against the spouses Romeo and Eliza, alleging
that Lot 3 had been surreptitiously appropriated by Romeo by securing for himself a new title in his name.
They further alleged that Lot 3 is being leased by the spouses Romeo and Eliza to third persons. They
therefore sought the annulment of the transfer to Romeo and the cancellation of his title, the eviction of
Romeo and his wife Eliza and all persons claiming rights from Lot 3, and the payment of damages.

Romeo presented evidence to show that Maximino and Aurea Nazareno never intended to sell the six
lots to Natividad and that Natividad was only to hold the said lots in trust for her siblings. He presented
the Deed of Partition and Distribution dated June 28, 1962 executed by Maximino Sr. and Aurea and duly
signed by all of their children, except Jose, who was then abroad and was represented by their mother,
Aurea.

ISSUE:
Should the lots in question be a proper subject of collation?

HELD:
YES. As Romeo admitted, no consideration was paid by him to his parents for the Deed of Sale.
Therefore, the sale was void for having been simulated. Natividad never acquired ownership over the
property because the Deed of Sale in her favor is also void for being without consideration and title to Lot
3 cannot be issued in her name.

Nonetheless, it cannot be denied that Maximino, Sr. intended to give the six Quezon City lots to Natividad.
As Romeo testified, their parents executed the Deed of Sale in favor of Natividad because the latter was
the only “female and the only unmarried member of the family.”She was thus entrusted with the real
properties in behalf of her siblings. As she herself admitted, she intended to convey Lots 10 and 11 to
Jose in the event the latter returned from abroad. There was thus an implied trust constituted in her favor.
Art. 1449 of the Civil Code states: There is also an implied trust when a donation is made to a person but
it appears that although the legal estate is transmitted to the donee, he nevertheless is either to have no
beneficial interest or only a part thereof.

There being an implied trust, the lots in question are therefore subject to collation in accordance with Art.
1061 which states: Every compulsory heir, who succeeds with other compulsory heirs, must bring into
the mass of the estate any property or right which he may have received from the decedent, during the

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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lifetime of the latter, by way of donation, or any other gratuitous title, in order that it may be computed in
the determination of the legitime of each heir, and in the account of the partition.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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60. Rolando Sanchez, Florida Mierly Sanchez, Alfredo T. Sanchez and Myrna T. Sanchez v. Court
of Appeals, Rosalia S. Lugod, Arturo S. Lugod, Evelyn Lugod-Ranises and Roberto S. Lugod
G.R. No. 108947; September 29, 1997
PANGANIBAN, J.:

FACTS:
Respondent Rosalia S. Lugod is the only child of spouses Juan C. Sanchez and Maria Villafranca while
Arturo S. Lugod, Evelyn L. Ranises and Roberto S. Lugod are the legitimate children of Rosalia. Petitioner
Rolando, Florida Mierly, Alfredo and Myrna, all surnamed Sanchez, are the illegitimate children of Juan
C. Sanchez.

Following the death of her mother, Rosalia filed a petition for letters of administration over the estate of
her mother and the estate of her father, Juan C. Sanchez, who was at the time in state of senility. Before
the administration proceedings could formally be terminated and closed, Juan C. Sanchez, Rosalias
father, died.

Petitioners as heirs of Juan C. Sanchez, filed a petition for letters of administration over the intestate
estate of Juan C. Sanchez, which petition was opposed by Rosalia. However, Rosalia and petitioners
executed a compromise agreement wherein they agreed to divide the properties enumerated therein of
the late Juan C. Sanchez. Rosalia was appointed as the administratrix of her fathers intestate estate.
Subsequently, Rosalia and petitioners entered into and executed a memorandum of agreement which
modified the compromise agreement.

In opposing the validity and enforcement of the compromise agreement, petitioners harp on the minority
of Florida Mierly, Alfredo and Myrna. Citing Article 2032 of the Civil Code, they contend that the courts
approval is necessary in compromises entered into by guardians and parents in behalf of their wards or
children. Further, petitioners contend that Rosalia be ordered to deliver to them the deficiency as allegedly
provided under the compromise agreement and that the court direct the provisional inclusion of the
alleged deficiency in the inventory for purposes of collating the properties subject of the questioned deeds
of sale.

ISSUES:
1. Whether or not a judicial approval is necessary if the compromise agreement was executed during the
pendency of the probate proceedings?
2. Whether the compromise agreement entered into by guardians and parents in behalf of their wards or
children valid without judicial authority
3. Whether there was fraud in the execution of the compromise and/or collation of the properties sold

HELD:
1. No. Article 2028 of the Civil Code defines a compromise agreement as a contract whereby the parties,
by making reciprocal concessions, avoid a litigation or put an end to one already commenced. Being a
consensual contract, it is perfected upon the meeting of the minds of the parties. Judicial approval is not
required for its perfection. In this case, since the compromise agreement was the result of a long drawn
out process, with all the parties ably striving to protect their respective interests and to come out with the
best they could, there can be no doubt that the parties entered into it freely and voluntarily. Accordingly,
they should be bound thereby. To be valid, it is merely required under the law to be based on real claims
and actually agreed upon in good faith by the parties thereto.

2. Yes. ´However, we observe that although denominated a compromise agreement, the document in
this case is essentially a deed of partition, pursuant to Article 1082 of the Civil Code which provides that

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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[e]very act which is intended to put an end to indivision among co-heirs and legatees or devisees is
deemed to be a partition, although it should purport to be a sale, an exchange, a compromise, or any
other transaction.

For a partition to be valid, Section 1, Rule 74 of the Rules of Court, requires the concurrence of the
following conditions: (1) the decedent left no will; (2) the decedent left no debts, or if there were debts
left, all had been paid; (3) the heirs and liquidators are all of age, or if they are minors, the latter are
represented by their judicial guardian or legal representatives; and (4) the partition was made by means
of a public instrument or affidavit duly filed with the Register of Deeds. We find that all the foregoing
requisites are present in this case. We therefore affirm the validity of the parties compromise
agreement/partition in this case.”

3. None. Petitioner’s allegations of fraud in the execution of the questioned deeds of sale are bereft of
substance, in view of the palpable absence of evidence to support them. The legal presumption of validity
of the questioned deeds of absolute sale, being duly notarized public documents, has not been overcome.
On the other hand, fraud is not presumed. It must be proved by clear and convincing evidence, and not
by mere conjectures or speculations. We stress that these deeds of sale did not involve gratuitous
transfers of future inheritance; these were contracts of sale perfected by the decedents during their
lifetime. Hence, the properties conveyed thereby are not collationable because, essentially, collation
mandated under Article 1061 of the Civil Code contemplates properties conveyed inter vivos by the
decedent to an heir by way of donation or other gratuitous title.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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XIV. ARTICLES 1078-1105 (PARTITION, EFFECTS OF PARTITION, RESCISSION & NULLITY OF


PARTITION)

61. Heirs of Ignacio Conti and Rosario Cuario v. Court of Appeals and Lydia S. Reyes as Attorney-
in-Fact of Josefina S. Reyes, Bernardita S. Palilio, Herminia S. Palilio, Remedios A. Sampayo,
Iluminada A. Sampayo, Enrico A. Sampayo, Carlos A. Sampayo, Generoso C. Sampayo, Myrna
C. Sampayo, Rosalino C. Sampayo, Manuel C. Sampayo, Delia A. Sampayo, Corazon C.
Sampayo, Nilo C. Sampayo, and Lolita A. Sampayo in her own behalf and as Attorney-in-Fact
of Norma A. Sampayo
G.R. No. 118464; December 21, 1998
BELLOSILLO, J.:

FACTS:
Lourdes Sampayo and Ignacio Conti, married to Rosario Cuario, were the co-owners of a lot in Lucena
City. Lourdes died intestate without issue. Private respondents, claiming to be the collateral relatives of
the deceased Lourdes, filed an action for partition and damages. Conti refused the partition on the ground
that private respondents failed to produce any document to prove that they were the rightful heirs of
Lourdes. Ignacio died and was substituted as party-defendant by his children. During the trial, private
respondents presented Lydia Sampayo Reyes and Adelaida Sampayo to prove that they were the
collateral heirs of the deceased Lourdes Sampayo and therefore entitled to her rights as co-owner of the
subject lot. Private respondent, Lydia Sampayo presented an original copy of her certificate of live birth
to prove that she was one of the nieces of Lourdes and daughter of Josefina Sampayo. Josefina, is the
only living sibling of Lourdes. Lydia also testified that the other siblings of Lourdes were Remedios, Luis
and Manuel and are deceased. She presented their baptismal certificates together with the birth
certificate of Manuel. The baptismal certificates were presented in lieu of the birth certificates because
the Office of the Civil Registry was burned and all records were totally burned. Adelaida Sampayo
testified that she was the spouse of Manuel, the brother of deceased Lourdes.

Rosario claimed that the late Ignacio Conti paid for real property taxes of the property and spend for
necessary repairs and improvements because of their agreement that Lourdes would leave her share of
the property to them. No will was presented by petitioners to substantiate this claim. Petitioners argue
that a complaint for partition to claim a supposed share of the deceased co-owner cannot prosper without
prior settlement of the latter’s estate.

ISSUE:
Is settlement of the estate a condition precedent, before the commencement of any action pertaining to
the deceased?

HELD:
No. Prior settlement of estate is not a condition precedent before the commencement of any action
pertaining to the deceased.

Conformably with the foregoing and taken in conjunction with Arts. 777 and 494 of the Civil Code, from
the death of Lourdes Sampayo her rights as a co-owner, incidental to which is the right to ask for partition
at any time or to terminate the co-ownership, were transmitted to her rightful heirs. In so demanding
partition private respondents merely exercised the right originally pertaining to the decedent, their
predecessor-in-interest.

Article 494. No co-owner shall be obliged to remain in the co-ownership. Each co-owner may demand at
any time the partition of the thing owned in common, insofar as his share is concerned. Nevertheless, an

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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agreement to keep the thing undivided for a certain period of time, not exceeding ten years, shall be valid.
This term may be extended by a new agreement. A donor or testator may prohibit partition for a period
which shall not exceed twenty years. Neither shall there be any partition when it is prohibited by law. No
prescription shall run in favor of a co-owner or co-heir against his co-owners or co-heirs so long as he
expressly or impliedly recognizes the co-ownership

Article 777. The rights to the succession are transmitted from the moment of the death of the decedent

Conformably with Arts. 777 and 494 of the Civil Code, from the death of Lourdes Sampayo her rights as
a co-owner, incidental to which is the right to ask for partition at any time or to terminate the co-ownership,
were transmitted to her rightful heirs. In demanding partition private respondents merely exercised the
right originally pertaining to the decedent, their predecessor-in-interest.

Petitioners' theory as to the requirement of publication would have been correct had the action been for
the partition of the estate of Lourdes Sampayo, or if we were dealing with extrajudicial settlement by
agreement between heirs and the summary settlement of estates of small value. But what private
respondents are pursuing is the mere segregation of Lourdes' one-half share which they inherited from
her through intestate succession. This is a simple case of ordinary partition between co-owners.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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62. Mauricia Alejandrino v. The Honorable Court of Appeals, Hon. Benigno G. Gaviola, RTC-9,
Cebu City, and Licerio P. Nique
G.R. No. 114151; September 17, 1998
ROMERO, J.:

FACTS:
The late spouses Alejandrino left their six children named Marcelino, Gregorio, Ciriaco, Mauricia,
Laurencia and Abundio, a 219-square-meter lot in Mambaling, Cebu City identified covered by TCT. Upon
the demise of the Alejandrino spouses, the property should have been divided among their children with
each child having a share of 36.50 square meters. However, the estate of the Alejandrino spouses was
not settled in accordance with the procedure outlined in the Rules of Court.

Petitioner Mauricia (one of the children) allegedly purchased 12.17 square meters of Gregorio's share,
36.50 square meters of Ciriaco's share and 12.17 square meters of Abundio's share thereby giving her
a total area of 97.43 square meters, including her own share of 36.50 square meters. It turned out,
however, that a third party named Licerio Nique, the private respondent in this case, also purchased
portions of the property, to wit: 36.50 square meters from Laurencia, 36.50 square meters from Gregorio
"through Laurencia," 12.17 square meters from Abundio also "through Laurencia" and 36.50 square
meters from Marcelino or a total area of Laurencia" and 36.50 square meters from Marcelino or a total
area of 121.67 square meters of the Alejandrino property.

However, Laurencia (the alleged seller of most of the 121.67 square meters of the property) later
questioned the sale in an action for quieting of title and damages against private respondent Nique.

ISSUE:
Whether or not as an heir of the Alejandrino property, Laurencia may validly sell specific portions thereof
to a third party

HELD:
Yes. In the instant case, Laurencia was within her hereditary rights in selling her pro indiviso share in
Lot No. 2798. However, because the property had not yet been partitioned in accordance with the Rules
of Court, no particular portion of the property could be identified as yet and delineated as the object of
the sale. Thus, interpreting Article 493 of the Civil Code providing that an alienation of a co-owned
property "shall be limited to the portion which may be allotted to (the seller) in the division upon the
termination of the co-ownership.

The legality of Laurencia's alienation of portions of the estate of the Alejandrino spouses was settled in
a Civil Case where decision in that case had become final and executory. When private respondent filed
a motion for the segregation of the portions of the property that were adjudged in his favor, private
respondent was in effect calling for the partition of the property. However, under the law, partition of the
estate of a decedent may only be effected by (1) the heirs themselves extrajudicially, (2) by the court in
an ordinary action for partition, or in the course of administration proceedings, (3) by the testator himself,
and (4) by the third person designated by the testator.

Partition among co-owners may thus be evidenced by the overt act of a co-owner of renouncing his right
over the property regardless of the form it takes. In effect, Laurencia expressed her intention to terminate
the co-owner by selling her share to private respondent.

Moreover, the execution of the deed of extrajudicial settlement of the estate reflected the intention of both
Laurencia and petitioner Mauricia to physically divide the property. Both of them had acquired the shares

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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of their brothers and therefore it was only the two of them that needed to settle the estate. The fact that
the document was not notarized is no hindrance to its effectivity as regards the two of them. The partition
of inherited property need not be embodied in a public document.

On the part of Laurencia, the court found that she had transmitted her rights over portions she had
acquired from her brothers to private respondent Nique. The sale was made after the execution of the
deed of extrajudicial settlement of the estate that private respondent himself witnessed. The extrajudicial
settlement of estate having constituted a partition of the property, Laurencia validly transferred ownership
over the specific front portion of the property with an area of 146 square meters.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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63. Eleuterio, Anatalia, Joselito, Rogelio, Evangeline, Noel, Guillermo, Lorenzo, Domingo, Amado,
And Victoria, all surnamed Lopez v. Court of Appeals, and Spouses Marcelino and Cristina S.
Lopez, Felisa Lopez and Ramon Cortez, Zoilo Lopez, Leonardo Lopez and Leonila Lopez and
Spouses Rogelio M. Amurao and Noami T. Amurao
G.R. No. 127827; March 5, 2003
PUNO, J.:

FACTS:
In 1920, Fermin Lopez occupied, possessed, and declared for taxation purposes a parcel of public land
containing an area of 19 hectares more or less. He filed a homestead application over the land, but his
application was not acted upon until his death in 1934. When he died, he was survived by her children
including Hermogenes Lopez.

Following Fermin's death, Hermogenes, being the eldest child, worked and introduced additional
improvements on the land. The homestead application of Fermin is still not acted upon so Hermogenes
filed a homestead application in his own name. The Bureau approved his application.

Unaware that he has been awarded a homestead patent, Hermogenes executed an Extra-judicial
Partition of the disputed land with his brothers.

Hermogenes then died leaving his children, respondents Lopez, as his heirs. Respondent Lopezes as
the the and absolute owner of the disputed land sold a large portion of the disputed property to respondent
spouses Amurao.

Petitioner’s heirs of Nazario Lopez and heirs of Juan Lopez (heirs of the brothers of Hermogenes),
instituted the present action against the respondents before the RTC, praying that they be declared co-
owners of the property subject matter and that it be partitioned. Petitioners claim that Hermogenes and
his heirs, respondent Lopezes, recognized their rights as co-owners of the disputed property, as shown
by the Extra-judicial Partition of the real property executed by Hermogenes and his brothers. Petitioners
also claim that Hermogenes filed the application in behalf of all the heirs of Fermin.

ISSUE:
Whether or not petitioners and respondents are co-owners and therefore entitled to a partition of the
subject lot

HELD:
No. There is no co-ownership therefore the petitioners are not entitled to have the land partitioned.

The application of Fermin unfortunately remained unacted upon up to the time of his death. It was neither
approved nor denied by the Director, as the Bureau failed to process it. Hence, he could not have
acquired any vested rights as a homestead applicant over the property because his application was never
acted upon. A valid application is sadly lacking in the case of Fermin. This circumstance prevented him
from acquiring any vested right over the land and fully owning it at the time of his death. Conformably,
his heirs did not inherit any property right from him. Had the application of Fermin been duly approved,
his heirs would have succeeded him in his rights and obligations with respect to the land he has applied
for. Sec. 103 of Act No. 2874 covers such a contingency, thus: x x x The failure of the Bureau of Lands
to act on the application of Fermin up to the time of his death, however, prevented his heirs to be
subrogated in all his rights and obligations with respect to the land applied for.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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Petitioners are not its co-owners as it is owned absolutely by Hermogenes. The instruments were
executed on the mistaken assumption that Hermogenes and his brothers inherited the property from
Fermin. Moreover, at the time the documents were made, Hermogenes was unaware that he was granted
a homestead patent.

Prescinding from the lack of co-ownership, petitioners' argument that they are entitled to have the land
partition must be rejected. Partition, in general, is the separation, division and assignment of a thing held
in common among those to whom it may belong. The purpose of partition is to put an end to co-ownership.
It seeks a severance of the individual interests of each co-owner, vesting in each a sole estate in specific
property and giving to each one a right to enjoy his estate without supervision or interference from the
other. Not being co-owners of the disputed lot, petitioners cannot demand its partition. They do not have
any interest or share in the property upon which they can base their demand to have it divided.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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64. Lily Elizabeth Bravo-Guerrero, et.al. v. Edward Bravo


G.R. No. 152658; July 29, 2005
CARPIO, J.:

FACTS:
Spouses Mauricio Bravo and Simona Andaya Bravo owned two parcels of land located in Makati City.
Mauricio and Simona had three children - Roland, Cesar and Lily. Cesar died without issue. Lily Bravo
married David Diaz, and had a son, David Jr. Roland had six children, namely, Lily Elizabeth, Edward,
Roland Jr., Senia, Benjamin, and their half-sister, Ofelia.

In 1966, Simona executed a General Power of Attorney (GPA) appointing Mauricio as her attorney-in-
fact authorizing Mauricio to mortgage or otherwise hypothecate, sell, assign and dispose of any of her
property. Mauricio mortgaged the Properties to the PNB and DBP. In 1970, Mauricio executed a Deed of
Sale with Assumption of REM conveying the Properties to Roland, Ofelia and Elizabeth. The Deed of
Sale was notarized but was not annotated on the TCTs of the said properties.

Edward filed an action for the judicial partition of the Properties. Edward claimed that he and the other
grandchildren of Mauricio and Simona are co-owners of the Properties by succession. Despite this,
petitioners refused to share with him the possession and rental income of the Properties. Edward later
amended his complaint to include a prayer to annul the Deed of Sale, which he claimed was merely
simulated to prejudice the other heirs.

The trial court upheld Mauricio’s sale of the Properties to the vendees. The CA declared the Deed of Sale
void for lack of Simona’s consent. The appellate court held that the GPA executed by Simona was not
sufficient to authorize Mauricio to sell the Properties because Article 1878 of the Civil Code requires a
special power of attorney for such transactions. Hence, the CA ordered the partition of the said properties
among the compulsory heirs.

ISSUES:
1. Whether or not Mauricio has authority to sell the subject properties
2. Whether or not the partition is proper

HELD:
1. Yes. Article 1878 requires a special power of attorney for an agent to execute a contract that transfers
the ownership of an immovable. Article 1878 refers to the nature of the authorization, not to its form. Even
if a document is titled as a general power of attorney, the requirement of a special power of attorney is
met if there is a clear mandate from the principal specifically authorizing the performance of the act.

Simona expressly authorized Mauricio in the GPA to “sell, assign and dispose of any and all of my
property xxx or any interest therein xxx as well as to act as my general representative and agent, with full
authority to buy, sell, negotiate and contract for me and in my behalf”. Taken together, these provisions
constitute a clear and specific mandate to Mauricio to sell the Properties. Even if it is called a general
power of attorney, the specific provisions in the GPA are sufficient for the purposes of Article 1878. These
provisions in the GPA likewise indicate that Simona consented to the sale of the Properties. Thus,
Mauricio has authority to sell the subject properties.

2. Yes. Any co-owner may demand at any time the partition of the common property unless a co-owner
has repudiated the co-ownership. This action for partition does not prescribe and is not subject to laches.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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Petitioners have consistently claimed that their father is one of the vendees who bought the Properties.
As Roland Bravo, Sr. is also the father of respondent Edward Bravo, Edward is thus a compulsory heir
of Roland Bravo, and entitled to a share, along with his brothers and sisters, in his father’s portion of the
Properties. In short, Edward and petitioners are co-owners of the Properties. As such, Edward can
rightfully ask for the partition of the Properties.

Note: The SC upheld the validity of the Deed of sale: Gross inadequacy of price does not affect the
validity of a contract of sale unless it signifies a defect in the consent or that the parties actually intended
a donation or some other contract. In this case, respondents have not proved any of the instances that
would invalidate the Deed of Sale. Sps. Mauricio and Simona were married prior to the effectivity of the
New Civil Code and the FC; it is not clear when the conjugal properties were acquired (prior or during the
effectivity of the NCC); that the sale took place prior to the effectivity of the FC. Hence, the SC applied
Article 1413 of the old Spanish Civil Code, wherein it is stated that the husband could alienate conjugal
partnership property for valuable consideration without the wife’s consent. Further, even under the New
Civil Code contracts alienating conjugal real property without the wife’s consent are merely voidable. FC
does not apply.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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65. Emilia Figuracion-Gerilla v. Carolina Vda. De Figuracion, Elena Figuracion-Ancheta, Hilaria A.


Figuracion, Felipa Figuracion-Manuel, Quintin Figuracion and Mary Figuracion-Ginez
G.R. No. 154322; August 22, 2006
CORONA, J.:

FACTS:
Emilia Figuracion sought the extrajudicial partition of all properties held in common by her and
respondents which were part of their fathers’s estate. The respondents took the position that Leandro's
estate should first undergo settlement proceedings before partition among the heirs could take place.
And they claimed that an accounting of expenses chargeable to the estate was necessary for such
settlement.

ISSUE:
Whether or not prior settlement of Leandro's intestate estate is necessary before the properties can be
partitioned or distributed

HELD:
YES. The right to an inheritance is transmitted immediately to the heirs by operation of law, at the moment
of death of the decedent. There is no doubt that, as one of the heirs of Leandro Figuracion, Emilia has a
legal interest in the properties.

There are two ways by which partition can take place under Rule 69: by agreement under Section 2 and
through commissioners when such agreement cannot be reached, under Sections 3 to 6. Neither method
specifies a procedure for determining expenses chargeable to the decedent’s estate. While Section 8 of
Rule 69 provides that there shall be an accounting of the real property's income (rentals and profits) in
the course of an action for partition, there is no provision for the accounting of expenses for which property
belonging to the decedent's estate may be answerable, such as funeral expenses, inheritance taxes and
similar expenses enumerated under Section 1, Rule 90 of the Rules of Court.

In a situation where there remains an issue as to the expenses chargeable to the estate, partition is
inappropriate. While petitioner points out that the estate is allegedly without any debt and she and
respondents are Leandro Figuracion's only legal heirs, she does not dispute the finding of the CA that
"certain expenses" including those related to her father's final illness and burial have not been properly
settled. Thus, the heirs have to submit their father's estate to settlement because the determination of
these expenses cannot be done in an action for partition.

In estate settlement proceedings, there is a proper procedure for the accounting of all expenses for which
the estate must answer. If it is any consolation at all to petitioner, the heirs or distributees of the properties
may take possession thereof even before the settlement of accounts, as long as they first file a bond
conditioned on the payment of the estate's obligations.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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66. Joseph Cua v. Gloria A. Vargas


G.R. No. 156536; October 31, 2006
AZCUNA, J.:

FACTS:
A parcel of residential land was left behind by the late Paulina Vargas. A notarized Extra Judicial
Settlement Among Heirs was executed by and among Paulina Vargas' heirs, partitioning and adjudicating
unto themselves the lot in question. Florentino, Andres, Antonina and Gloria, however, did not sign the
document. Only Ester, Visitacion, Juan, Zenaida and Rosario signed it.

Thereafter, an Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs with Sale was again executed by and among the
same heirs over the same property and also with the same sharings. Once more, only Ester, Visitacion,
Juan, Zenaida and Rosario signed the document and their respective shares were sold to Joseph Cua,
petitioner herein.

According to Gloria Vargas, she came to know of the Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs with Sale
only when the original house built on the lot was being demolished sometime. She likewise claimed she
was unaware that an earlier Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs involving the same property had been
published in the Catanduanes Tribune.

After knowing of the sale to petitioner, Gloria Vargas tried to redeem the property, with the following letter
sent to petitioner on her behalf:

When the offer to redeem was refused and after having failed to reach an amicable settlement at the
barangay level, Gloria Vargas filed a case for annulment of Extra Judicial Settlement and Legal
Redemption of the lot with the MTC against petitioner.

Respondents claimed that as co-owners of the property, they may be subrogated to the rights of the
purchaser by reimbursing him the price of the sale. In effect, they claimed that the Extra Judicial
Settlement Among Heirs and the Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs with Sale were null and void and
had no legal and binding effect on them.

MTC rendered a decision in favor of petitioner, dismissing the complaint as well as the complaint-in-
intervention for lack of merit, and declaring the Deed of Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs with Sale
valid and binding. On appeal, the RTC affirmed the MTC. However, The CA reversed the ruling of both
lower courts declaring that the Extra Judicial Settlement Among Heirs and the Extra Judicial Settlement
Among Heirs with Sale were void and without any legal effect. The CA held that, pursuant to Section 1,
Rule 74 of the Rules of Court, the extrajudicial settlement made by the other co-heirs is not binding upon
respondents considering the latter never participated in it nor did they ever signify their consent to the
same.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the written notice required under Article 1088 of the Civil Code can be dispensed with
when such co-heirs have actual knowledge of the sale such that the 30-day period within which a co-heir
can exercise the right to be subrogated to the rights of a purchaser shall commence from the date of
actual knowledge of the sale

HELD:
Yes. The publication of the settlement does not constitute constructive notice to the heirs who had no
knowledge or did not take part in it because the same was notice after the fact of execution. The

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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requirement of publication is geared for the protection of creditors and was never intended to deprive
heirs of their lawful participation in the decedent's estate. In this connection, the records of the present
case confirm that respondents never signed either of the settlement documents, having discovered their
existence only shortly before the filing of the present complaint.

This is not to say, though, that respondents' co-heirs cannot validly sell their hereditary rights to third
persons even before the partition of the estate. The heirs who actually participated in the execution of
the extrajudicial settlements, which included the sale to petitioner of their pro indiviso shares in the subject
property, are bound by the same. Nevertheless, respondents are given the right to redeem these shares
pursuant to Article 1088 of the Civil Code. The right to redeem was never lost because respondents were
never notified in writing of the actual sale by their co-heirs. Based on the provision, there is a need for
written notice to start the period of redemption, thus:

Should any of the heirs sell his hereditary rights to a stranger before the partition, any or all of the co-
heirs may be subrogated to the rights of the purchaser by reimbursing him for the price of the sale,
provided they do so within the period of one month from the time they were notified in writing of the sale
by the vendor. (Emphasis supplied.)

It bears emphasis that the period of one month shall be reckoned from the time that a co-heir is notified
in writing by the vendor of the actual sale. Written notice is indispensable and mandatory, actual
knowledge of the sale acquired in some other manner by the redemptioner notwithstanding. It cannot be
counted from the time advance notice is given of an impending or contemplated sale. The law gives the
co-heir thirty days from the time written notice of the actual sale within which to make up his or her mind
and decide to repurchase or effect the redemption.

Though the Code does not prescribe any particular form of written notice nor any distinctive method for
written notification of redemption, the method of notification remains exclusive, there being no alternative
provided by law. This proceeds from the very purpose of Article 1088, which is to keep strangers to the
family out of a joint ownership, if, as is often the case, the presence of outsiders be undesirable and the
other heir or heirs be willing and in a position to repurchase the share sold.

It should be kept in mind that the obligation to serve written notice devolves upon the vendor co-heirs
because the latter are in the best position to know the other co-owners who, under the law, must be
notified of the sale. This will remove all uncertainty as to the fact of the sale, its terms and its perfection
and validity, and quiet any doubt that the alienation is not definitive. As a result, the party notified need
not entertain doubt that the seller may still contest the alienation.

Considering, therefore, that respondents' co-heirs failed to comply with this requirement, there is no legal
impediment to allowing respondents to redeem the shares sold to petitioner given the former's obvious
willingness and capacity to do so.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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67. Teofilo Bautista v. Alegria Bautista, et. al.


G.R. No. 160556; August 3, 2007
Carpio-Morales, J.:

FACTS:
During her lifetime, Teodora Rosario was the owner of the subject parcel of land. She died intestate,
leaving behind her spouse Isidro Bautista (Isidro) and five children, namely: Teofilo Bautista (Teofilo),
Alegria Bautista (Alegria), Angelica Bautista (Angelica), Pacita Bautista (Pacita) and Gil Bautista (Gil).
Isidro and four of his five children — Pacita, Gil, Alegria, and Angelica — executed a Deed of Extra-
Judicial Partition on April 21, 1981 of the property in which Isidro waived his share in favor of his said
four children. Teofilo was excluded from the partition. Twelve years and 27 days later, petitioner Teofilo
filed a Complaint against his siblings Alegria and Angelica for annulment of documents, partition, recovery
of ownership, possession and damages.

ISSUE:
May Teofilo ask for the annulment of the extrajudicial partition?

HELD:
Yes. The extra-judicial partition executed by Teofilo's co-heirs was invalid. So Segura v. Segura instructs:
. . . The partition in the present case was invalid because it excluded six of the nine heirs who were
entitled to equal shares in the partitioned property. Under the rule, "no extra-judicial settlement shall be
binding upon any person who has not participated therein or had no notice thereof." As the partition was
a total nullity and did not affect the excluded heirs, it was not correct for the trial court to hold that their
right to challenge the partition had prescribed after two years . . .

The deed of extra-judicial partition in the case at bar being invalid, the action to have it annulled does not
prescribe. Since the deed of extra-judicial partition is invalid, it transmitted no rights to Teofilo's coheirs.
Consequently, the subsequent transfer by Angelica and Alegria of 1/2 of the property others is invalid,
hence, conferring no rights upon the transferees under the principle of nemo dat quod non habet.
.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S AY 2017-2018)

68. Rogelia Daclag and Adelino Daclag (deceased) substituted by Rodel M. Daclag and Adrian M.
Daclag v. Elino Macahilig, Adela Macahilig Conrado Macahilig, Lorenza Haber and Benita Del
Rosario
G.R. No. 159578; July 28, 2008
AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ, J.:

FACTS:
During their lifetime, the spouses Candido and Gregoria Macahilig were the owners of seven parcels of
land, all located in Numancia, Aklan. They had seven children, namely: Dionesio, Emeliano, Mario,
Ignacio, Eusebio, Tarcela and Maxima. On March 18, 1982, Maxima, a daughter of Candido and Gregoria
entered into a Deed of Extra-judicial Partition with the heirs of her deceased brothers, Mario and Eusebio
Macahilig, over the seven parcels of land. The same deed stated that Dionesio was already deceased
but was survived by his daughter, Susana Briones; Emeliano was out of the country; Ignacio and Tarcela
were also both deceased but were survived by three children each.

One of the properties, Parcel One, was divided between Vicenta Macahilig Galvez for the heirs of Mario
Macahilig, who was given the one half southern portion of the land; and Adela Macahilig for the heirs of
Eusebio Macahilig, who got the one half northern portion.

On May 23, 1984, Maxima sold Parcel One to spouses Adelino and Rogelia Daclag for which an OCT
was issued. On December 16, 1991 respondents filed with the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Kalibo,
Aklan a complaint for recovery of possession and ownership, cancellation of documents and damages
against Maxima and petitioners, alleging that the sale was void. Petitioners contended that they
purchased the subject land in good faith and for value from co-defendant Maxima.

The RTC concluded that Maxima had no right to sell that land as it did not belong to her hence the sale
was void. The CA affirmed, hence this petition.

ISSUE:
Will the resolution of the present case affect the rights of the other heirs who have not participated in the
partition?

HELD:
No. We would like to state the inescapable fact that the Extra-judicial partition of the estate of Candido
Macahilig involving the seven parcels of land was made only between Maxima and the heirs of her two
deceased brothers Mario and Eusebio. Section 1 of Rule 74 of the Rules of Court provides:

Section 1. Extrajudicial settlement by agreement between heirs. - If the decedent left no will and
no debts and the heirs are all of age, or the minors are represented by their judicial or legal
representatives duly authorized for the purpose, the parties may, without securing letters of
administration, divide the estate among themselves as they see fit by means of a public instrument
filed in the office of the register of deeds, and should they disagree, they may do so in an ordinary
action for partition. x x x

The fact of the extrajudicial settlement or administration shall be published in a newspaper of general
circulation in the manner provided in the next succeeding section; but no extrajudicial settlement shall be
binding upon any person who has not participated therein or had no notice thereof.

Records do not show that there has been any case filed by the other heirs who had not participated in
the Deed of Extra-Judicial Partition and were questioning the validity of such partition. Thus, the resolution

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
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DIGESTED CASES IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I: WILLS & SUCCESSION 4 S AY 2017-2018)

of the present case concerns only the issues between the parties before us and will not in any way affect
the rights of the other heirs who have not participated in the partition.

We find no cogent reason to depart from the findings of both the trial court and the CA that Maxima was
not the owner of the land she sold to petitioners, and that the one half northern portion of such land was
owned by the respondents; that Maxima had no right to dispose of the land and, thus, she had no right
to convey the same. Petition for review is DENIED.

|| CIVREV I (PERSONS & FAMILY RELATIONS / PROPERTY / WILLS AND SUCCESSION): VICE DEAN DELSON) || ADVINCULA, ADINA, ALVERO, ANDE,
APA, BAACO, BULUSAN, COS-AGON, CORPUS, CORTEZ, DALUDADO, DELA CRUZ, DEL ROSARIO, DENILA, DENOSTA, EDDING, EDILLOR, HUAB,
MABANGLO, MACALINO, MARAJAS, MINA, PARAGAS, RECUENCO, U RUBIO, VIEDOR, VILLAMAYOR, VIRAY ||
100