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JUSTICE ESTELA PERLAS-BERNABE

CASE DIGESTS
ALTHOUGH EXPERT OPINIONS FURNISHED BY PSYCHOLOGISTS REGARDING THE
TEMPERAMENT OF PARTIES ARE USUALLY GIVEN CONSIDERABLE WEIGHT BY THE
COURTS, THE EXISTENCE OF PSYCHOLOGICAL INCAPACITY MUST STILL BE PROVEN BY
INDEPENDENT EVIDENCE.
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. RODOLFO O. DE GRACIA
G.R. No. 171557, February 12, 3014
PERLAS-BERNABE, J.:

FACTS:
Rodolfo and Natividad were married on February 15, 1969 in Zamboanga del Norte. Their union begot
two children. On December 28, 1998, Rodolfo sought the declaration of nullity his marriage with
Natividad on the ground of the latter’s psychological incapacity.

In support of his complaint, Rodolfo testified, that he was forced to marry Natividad barely three months
into their courtship in light of her accidental pregnancy. When he decided to join and train with the army,
Natividad left their conjugal home and sold their house without his consent. Thereafter, Natividad lived
with a certain Engineer Terez, and bore him a child named Julie Ann Terez. Thereafter, Natividad
contracted a second marriage with one Antonio Mondarez. From the time Natividad abandoned them in
1972, Rodolfo was left to take care of Ma. Reynilda and Ma. Rizza and he exerted earnest efforts to save
their marriage which, however, proved futile.

Natividad failed to file her answer as well as to appear during trial. Nonetheless, she informed the court
that she submitted herself for psychiatric examination to Dr. Cheryl T. Zalsos. In her two–page
psychiatric evaluation report, Dr. Zalsos stated that both Rodolfo and Natividad were psychologically
incapacitated to comply with the essential marital obligations, finding that both parties suffered from
“utter emotional immaturity [which] is unusual and unacceptable behavior considered [as] deviant from
persons who abide by established norms of conduct.” Further, Dr. Zalsos noted that the mental condition
of both parties already existed at the time of the celebration of marriage, although it only

ISSUE:
Whether or not emotional immaturity, irresponsibility, or even sexual promiscuity, can be equated with
psychological incapacity.

HELD:
No. “Psychological incapacity,” as a ground to nullify a marriage under Article 36 of the Family Code,
should refer to no less than a mental – not merely physical – incapacity that causes a party to be truly
incognitive of the basic marital covenants that concomitantly must be assumed and discharged by the
parties to the marriage which, as so expressed in Article 68 of the Family Code, among others, include

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their mutual obligations to live together, observe love, respect and fidelity and render help and support.
There is hardly any doubt that the intendment of the law has been to confine the meaning of
“psychological incapacity” to the most serious cases of personality disorders clearly demonstrative of an
utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and significance to the marriage. Thus, psychological
incapacity must be characterized by: (a) gravity, (b) juridical antecedence, and (c) incurability.

The psychiatric evaluation of Dr. Zalsos did not explain in reasonable detail how Natividad’s condition
could be characterized as grave, deeply–rooted, and incurable within the parameters of psychological
incapacity jurisprudence. Aside from failing to disclose the types of psychological tests which she
administered on Natividad, Dr. Zalsos failed to identify in her report the root cause of Natividad’s
condition and to show that it existed at the time of the parties’ marriage. Neither was the gravity or
seriousness of Natividad’s behavior in relation to her failure to perform the essential marital obligations
sufficiently described in Dr. Zalsos’s report. Further, the finding contained therein on the incurability of
Natividad’s condition remains unsupported by any factual or scientific basis and, hence, appears to be
drawn out as a bare conclusion and even self–serving. Although expert opinions furnished by
psychologists regarding the psychological temperament of parties are usually given considerable weight
by the courts, the existence of psychological incapacity must still be proven by independent evidence.

To the Court’s mind, Natividad’s refusal to live with Rodolfo and to assume her duties as wife and mother
as well as her emotional immaturity, irresponsibility and infidelity do not rise to the level of psychological
incapacity that would justify the nullification of the parties’ marriage. Indeed, to be declared clinically or
medically incurable is one thing; to refuse or be reluctant to perform one’s duties is another

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NOTWITHSTANDING THE MOLINA GUIDELINES, AN EXPERT OPINION IS NOT
ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY AND MAY BE DISPENSED WITH IN A PETITION UNDER
ARTICLE 36 OF THE FAMILY CODE

RACHEL DEL ROSARIO vs. JOSE DEL ROSARIO
GR. No. 222541; February 15, 2017
PERLAS-BERNABE, J.:

FACTS:
Rachel and Jose got married on December 28, 1989 in a civil rites ceremony held in San Jose City, Nueva
Ecija, and were blessed with a son, named Wesley, on December 1, 1993. On February 19, 1995, they
renewed their vows in a church ceremony held in the Philippine Independent Church, Bagabag, Nueva
Vizcaya. In 1998, Rachel went back to Hongkong to work as domestic helper, only returning to the
Philippines every year for a vacation. Through her efforts, she was able to acquire a house and lot in
Rufino Homes Subdivision, San Jose, Nueva Ecija.

In September 2011, Rachel filed a petition for declaration of nullity of marriage before the RTC, alleging
that Jose was psychologically incapacitated to fulfill his essential marital obligations. She claimed that:
during their marriage, Jose conspicuously tried to avoid discharging his duties as husband and father.
According to Rachel, Jose was hot tempered and violent; he punched her in the shoulder a few days before
their church wedding, causing it to swell, when she refused to pay for the transportation expenses of his
parents; he hit his own father with a pipe, causing the latter to fall unconscious, which forced them to
leave Jose's parents' house where they were then staying; and he even locked her out of their house in
the middle of the night sometime in December 2007 when she fetched her relatives from the bus terminal,
which he refused to perform. Rachel added that Jose would represent himself as single, would flirt openly,
and had an extra-marital affair which she discovered when Jose mistakenly sent a text message to her
sister, Beverly A. Juan stating: "love, kung ayaw mo na akong magpunta diyan, pumunta ka na lang
dito." Another text message read: "Dumating lang ang asawa mo, ayaw mo na akong magtext at tumawag
sa 'yo." On one occasion, she, together with Wesley and Beverly, caught Jose and the other woman with
their child inside their conjugal dwelling. Finally, she claimed that Jose would refuse any chance of sexual
intimacy between them as they slowly drifted apart.

Rachel presented the testimonies of Wesley and her sisters, which corroborated her allegations, as well
as the testimony of Dr. Nedy L. Tayag, who prepared the Psychological Report on Rachel. The remarks
section of Dr. Tayag's Report, stated that Jose suffered from Antisocial Personality Disorder (APD)
characterized by: (a) his lack of empathy and concern for Rachel; (b) his irresponsibility and his pleasure-
seeking attitude that catered only to his own fancies and comfort; (c) his selfishness marked by his lack
of depth when it comes to his marital commitments; and (d) his lack of remorse for his shortcomings.
For his part, Jose denied all the allegations in the petition. Jose maintained that: (a) he had dutifully
performed all of his marital and parental duties and obligations to his family; (b) he had provided for his
family's financial and emotional needs; and (c) he contributed to the building and maintenance of their
conjugal home. Finally, he denied the alleged extra-marital affair and having laid hand on Rachel and
their son. Jose presented as well the testimony of Faustino Rigos to support his allegations.

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e. even when taken together with the various testimonies. insensitivity and emotional immaturity of Jose amount to psychological incapacity sufficient to declare the marriage null and void.an adverse integral element in the personality structure that effectively incapacitates the person from really 4 .1awp++i1 Lastly. specific behavior or habits during his adolescent years that could explain his behavior during the marriage. Particularly. There must be proof of a natal or supervening disabling factor in the person . deeply rooted in his childhood. it is not enough that a party prove that the other failed to meet the responsibility and duty of a married person. and cure. or infidelity amount to psychological incapacity. irresponsibility. Particularly. Dr. i. It should be pointed out that Dr. its classification.. Tayag's Report does not explain in detail how Jose's APD could be characterized as grave. i. Based on the totality of the evidence presented.. HELD: No. the CA declared that Jose's alleged infidelity. making it incurable within the law's conception.RTC declared the marriage between Jose and Rachel void on the ground of psychological incapacity. sufficiently clear to conclude that Jose's condition has no definite treatment. notwithstanding the overwhelming evidence against him. To reiterate and emphasize. or show how and to what extent Jose exhibited this disorder or how and to what extent his alleged actions and behavior correlate with his APD. they showed that Jose was irresponsible. the Report hastily concluded that Jose had a "deprived childhood" and "poor home condition" that automatically resulted in his APD equivalent to psychological incapacity without." "refusal" or "neglect" in the performance of the marital obligations. In sum. or emotionally immature which nonetheless do not amount to the downright incapacity that the law requires. ISSUE: Whether or not irresponsibility. irresponsibility. however. as he in fact even refused to take responsibility for his actions. and incurable within the jurisprudential parameters for establishing psychological incapacity. symptoms. the Report did not discuss the concept of APD which Jose allegedly suffers from. insensitive. Tayag. his act of squandering their money on his vices. cause. It relied on the findings and testimony of Dr. at best. holding that the totality of the evidence Rachel presented was not enough to sustain a finding that Jose is psychologically incapacitated to comply with the essential obligations of marriage. Tayag's assessment. there exists insufficient factual or legal basis to conclude that Jose's immaturity. failed to show that Jose's immaturity. psychological incapacity must be more than just a "difficulty. specifically identifying the history of Jose's condition antedating the marriage. CA reversed the ruling of the RTC. and infidelity rise to the level of psychological incapacity that would justify the nullification of the parties' marriage. declaring that Jose's APD interferes with his capacity to perform his marital and paternal duties. and his temper and alleged propensity for violence were not so grave and permanent as to deprive him of awareness of the duties and responsibilities of the matrimonial bond sufficient to nullify the marriage under Article 36 of the Family Code. Neither did the Report specify the reasons why and to what extent Jose's APD is serious and grave.e. and how it incapacitated him to understand and comply with his marital obligations. his refusal to seek employment.

which must be linked with the manifestations of the psychological incapacity.accepting and thereby complying with the obligations essential to marriage . 5 .

filed for divorce before the Mayor of Ichinomiya City. 2013 a petition for judicial recognition of foreign divorce and declaration of capacity to remarry pursuant to the second paragraph of Article 26 of the Family Code before the RTC. July 27. Philippines. No. pursuant to the laws of Japan. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. particularly the existence of the law on divorce. She also presented a certified machine copy of a document entitled "Divorce Certificate" issued by the Consul for the Ambassador of Japan in Manila that was authenticated by the Department of the Foreign Affairs. it bears stressing that Philippine law does not provide for absolute divorce. photocopies of the Civil Code of Japan and their corresponding English translation. On the other hand.IN ORDER FOR A DIVORCE OBTAINED ABROAD BY THE ALIEN SPOUSE TO BE RECOGNIZED IN OUR JURISDICTION. 2005 in Quezon City.k. namely. Aichi Prefecture.R. she nonetheless fell short of proving the national law of her husband. Their union bore two children. Doreen filed on February 7.a. The RTC denied Doreen's petition. However. and respondent Michiyuki Koike (Michiyuki). 2012. "DOREEN GRACE MEDINA KOIKE. IT MUST BE SHOWN THAT THE DIVORCE DECREE IS VALID ACCORDING TO THE NATIONAL LAW OF THE FOREIGNER DOREEN GRACE PARILLA MEDINA. a. Seeking to have the said Divorce Certificate annotated on her Certificate of Marriage on file with the Local Civil Registrar of Quezon City. vs. as well as a Certification issued by the City Civil Registry Office in Manila that the original of said divorce certificate was filed and recorded in the said Office. At the outset. a Filipino citizen. The RTC ruled that while the divorce documents presented by Doreen were successfully proven to be public or official records of Japan. On June 14. Article 26 of the Family Code — which addresses foreign marriages or mixed marriages involving a Filipino and a foreigner — allows a Filipino spouse to contract a subsequent marriage in case the divorce is validly obtained abroad by an alien spouse capacitating him or her to remarry." petitioner. no one appeared to oppose the petition. Doreen presented several foreign documents. In addition. a Japanese national. MICHIYUKI KOIKE G. They were divorced on even date as appearing in the Divorce Certificate and the same was duly recorded in the Official Family Register of Michiyuki Koike. "Certificate of Receiving/Certificate of Acceptance of Divorce" and "Family Register of Michiyuki Koike" both issued by the Mayor of Ichinomiya City and duly authenticated by the Consul of the Republic of the Philippines for Osaka. Doreen and Michiyuki. 215723. At the hearing. Japan. as well as two (2) books entitled "The Civil Code of Japan 2000" and "The Civil Code of Japan 2009" were likewise submitted as proof of the existence of Japan's law on divorce. were married on June 14. Japan. ISSUE: Whether or not the divorce decree obtained abroad must be valid in accordance to the national law of the alien spouse in order to be recognized in the Philippine courts HELD: YES. our courts cannot grant it. hence. Where a marriage between a Filipino citizen and a foreigner is validly celebrated and a divorce 6 . J P: FACTS: Petitioner Doreen Grace Parilla (Doreen).

Tomas. together with the alien's applicable national law to show the effect of the judgment on the alien himself or herself. our law on evidence requires that both the divorce decree and the national law of the alien must be alleged and proven like any other fact. the law confers jurisdiction on Philippine courts to extend the effect of a foreign divorce decree to a Filipino spouse without undergoing trial to determine the validity of the dissolution of the marriage. as well as the existence of pertinent laws of Japan on the matter are essentially factual that calls for a re-evaluation of the evidence presented before the RTC. In Corpuz v. the issue raised in the instant appeal is obviously a question of fact that is beyond the ambit of a Rule 45 petition for review. Since our courts do not take judicial notice of foreign laws and judgment. it must be shown that the divorce decree is valid according to the national law of the foreigner. it was pointed out that in order for a divorce obtained abroad by the alien spouse to be recognized in our jurisdiction. Both the divorce decree and the governing personal law of the alien spouse who obtained the divorce must be proven." This means that the foreign judgment and its authenticity must be proven as facts under our rules on evidence. the Court held that: The starting point in any recognition of a foreign divorce judgment is the acknowledgment that our courts do not take judicial notice of foreign judgments and laws. Under the above-highlighted paragraph. Justice Herrera explained that. "no sovereign is bound to give effect within its dominion to a judgment rendered by a tribunal of another country. Recio. 7 . Considering that the validity of the divorce decree between Doreen and Michiyuki.is thereafter validly obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating him or her to remarry. In Garcia v. the Filipino spouse shall likewise have capacity to remarry under Philippine law. The case is hereby REFERRED to the Court of Appeals for appropriate action including the reception of evidence to DETERMINE and RESOLVE the pertinent factual issues in accordance with this Decision. as a rule. The recognition may be made in an action instituted specifically for the purpose or in another action where a party invokes the foreign decree as an integral aspect of his claim or defense. Sto.

As Albert was not a resident of the Philippines. Albert failed to file his answer and was. (-2645-) M- 556 situated in the Province of Rizal. (-2645-) M-556 and the issuance of a new one in its stead in the name of UTNAI. Michael invokes the presumption of conjugality. but he fails to establish that the subject property was acquired during the marriage of Albert and Josephine. ONSTOTT vs. American citizen. Petitioner Michael Onstott. was the registered owner of a parcel of land covered by OCT No. J. the subject property was sold at public auction to Amelita A. summons was served through publication. which was registered under "Albert Onstott. subsequently redeemed the same from De Serra. UTNAI filed a complaint for cancellation of the OCT under the name of Albert and the issuance of a new title in its name.” and is thus. claiming to be the legitimate son of Albert with a certain Josephine Arrastia Onstott. Due to non-payment of realty taxes. He posits that his mother is an indispensable party for being the owner of half of the subject property. De Serra. marriage alone does not give rise to the presumption that a property forms part of the conjugal partnership. September 14. records are bereft of any evidence from which the actual date of acquisition of the subject property can be ascertained. married to Josephine Arrastia. the highest bidder. is conjugal in nature. his mother Josephine. the party who invokes this presumption must first prove that the property in controversy was acquired during the marriage. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. declared in default. Proof of acquisition during the coverture is a condition sine qua non for the operation of the presumption in favor of the conjugal partnership. TCT No. 221047. Article 160 of the New Civil Code provides that all property of the marriage is presumed to belong to the conjugal partnership. Respondent UTNAI. an American citizen.PRESUMPTION OF CONJUGALITY DOES NOT OPERATE IF THERE IS NO SHOWING WHEN THE PROPERTY ALLEGED TO BE CONJUGAL WAS ACQUIRED MICHAEL A. However. The RTC granted the cancellation of OCT No. The RTC Decision lapsed into finality and as a consequence. No.: FACTS: Albert. as he claimed. an association representing the actual occupants of the subject property. 8 . Indeed. unless it is proved that it pertains exclusively to the husband or to the wife. ISSUE: Should the presumption that the property forms part of the conjugal partnership arise by reason of marriage alone? HELD: NO. filed a Petition for Relief from Judgment contending that the ruling in the complaint filed by UTNAI was null and void for failure to implead an indispensable party. thus. UPPER TAGPOS NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION (UTNAI) G. B-9655 was issued in favor of UTNAI.R.

an indispensable party to the instant case. the Court notes. 9 . has never personally appeared in these proceedings to directly challenge the disposition of the subject property sans her participation is a co-owner thereof and necessarily.Considering that the presumption of conjugality does not operate if there is no showing when the property alleged to be conjugal was acquired. Consequently. must therefore fail. Michael's insistence that Josephine who. the subject property is therefore considered to be Albert's exclusive property.

According to Dr. However. determined to finish his studies and provide for the financial needs of his siblings and parents. as his mind was geared towards finishing his studies and finding employment to support his parents and siblings. who submitted a Psychological Evaluation Report and testified that Reghis suffered from Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCPD). February 24. Basilio surmised that Reghis’ OCPD was the root of the couple’s disagreements and that the same is incurable. explaining too that Reghis was an unwilling groom as marriage was farthest from his mind at the time and. ROMERO II and OLIVIA LAGMAN ROMERO G. to the exclusion of other responsibilities and duties such as those pertaining to his roles as father and husband. Reghis initially objected to the planned marriage of Olivia’s parents as he was unemployed and still unprepared. Reghis agreed.: FACTS: Reghis and Olivia were married on May 11. Reghis’ behavioral disorder gave him a strong obsession for whatever endeavour he chooses. such as his work. 209180. Basilio. he spent little time with his family. often having violent fights and jealous fits. No. As Olivia’s parents had treated him with nothing but kindness.R. J. SHOULD REFER TO THE MOST SERIOUS CASES OF PERSONALITY DISORDERS CLEARLY DEMONSTRATIVE OF AN UTTER INSENSITIVITY OR INABILITY TO GIVE MEANING AND SIGNIFICANCE TO THE MARRIAGE REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. 1972. He also added that Olivia is in a relationship with a certain Eddie Garcia. 1998. REGHIS M. They became even more estranged when Reghis secured a job as a medical representative and became engrossed in his career and focused on supporting his parents and siblings. The couple experienced a turbulent and tumultuous marriage. Less than a year into their relationship. For her part. Reghis tried to break-up with Olivia because he felt that her demanding attitude would prevent him from reaching his personal and family goals. On June 16. Dr. Reghis also presented Dr. As a result. Reghis also testified that he married Olivia not out of love but out of the desire to please the latter’s parents who were kind and accommodating to him. Reghis filed a petition for declaration of nullity of marriage before the RTC citing his psychological incapacity to comply with his essential marital obligations. Olivia’s parents assured him that they would shoulder all expenses and would support them until they are financially able. Reghis further maintained that he was not prepared to comply with the essential marital obligations at the time. at the time. a clinical psychologist. Olivia maintained that she and Reghis were capacitated to discharge the essential marital obligations before. as such. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. She also averred that the 10 .ARTICLE 36 OF THE FAMILY CODE. Reghis was still a student at the time. and after the celebration of their marriage. the couple parted ways. causing Olivia to complain that Reghis failed to be a real husband to her. felt cheated into marriage. In 1986. Valentina Nicdao-Basilio.

but out of reverence for the latter’s parents. its classification. Have juridical antecedence. Based on the appreciation of the RTC.e. Basilio simply concluded that Reghis' disorder is incurable but failed to explain how she came to such conclusion. although the overt manifestations may emerge only after the marriage. Basilio did not discuss the concept of OCPD. the cure would be beyond the means of the party involved. the OCPD was not shown to have juridical antecedence. should refer to the most serious cases of personality disorders clearly demonstrative of an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and significance to the marriage. ISSUE: Whether the Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCPD) of the husband in this case is considered psychological incapacity. the Court finds that the foregoing requirements do not concur. was unable to present evidence due to the absence of her counsel which was considered by the RTC as waiver of her right to present evidence.. 2. or even if it were otherwise. as a ground to nullify a marriage under Article 36 of the Family Code. Olivia. therefore. and 3. Dr. Psychological incapacity. does not mean that Reghis is psychologically incapacitated in the context of Article 36 of the Family Code. . but said petitions were dismissed.petition is barred by res judicata inasmuch as Reghis had previously filed petitions for the declaration of the nullity of their marriage on the ground the she is allegedly psychologically incapacitated. cause. it must be rooted in the history of the party antedating the marriage. existed even prior to the marriage or even during his adolescent years. After a thorough review of the records of this case. Basilio's conclusion that Reghis' "behavioral disorder . negates the existence of a grave and serious psychological incapacity on his part. symptoms. HELD: No. That he married Olivia not out of love. Dr. Be grave or serious such that the party would be incapable of carrying out the ordinary duties required in a marriage. Reghis’ testimony shows that he was able to comply with his marital obligations which. Be incurable. and cure. however. and failed to show how and to what extent the 11 . Reghis also fulfilled his duty to support and take care of his family. In like manner. . i. as he categorically stated that he loves their children and that he was a good provider to them. It must be a malady that is so grave and permanent as to deprive one of awareness of the duties and responsibilities of the matrimonial bond one is about to assume. As aptly pointed out by the petitioners. To warrant the declaration of nullity of marriage." no specific behavior or habits during his adolescent years were shown which would explain his behavior during his marriage with Olivia. Reghis admitted that he and Olivia lived together as husband and wife under one roof for fourteen (14) years and both of them contributed in purchasing their own house in Parañaque City. the psychological incapacity must: 1. Moreover. Other than Dr.

gravity and incurability of the condition of the party alleged to be psychologically incapacitated to assume and perform the essential marital duties. ill will. much less. especially where the pieces of evidence presented are grossly deficient to show the juridical antecedence.respondent exhibited this disorder in order to create a necessary inference that Reghis' condition had no definite treatment or is incurable. neglect or difficulty. not a mere refusal. Marriage is an inviolable institution protected by the State. the Court is compelled to uphold the indissolubility of the marital tie. on the part of the errant spouse. it must be limited to cases where there is a downright incapacity or inability to assume and fulfil the basic marital obligations. it cannot be dissolved at the whim of the parties. 12 . Accordingly. Article 36 of the Family Code must not be confused with a divorce law that cuts the marital bond at the time the grounds for divorce manifest themselves. absent sufficient evidence to prove psychological incapacity within the context of Article 36 of the Family Code. rather. Thus.

however. alleging that after the lapse of thirty-three (33) years without any kind of communication from him. J. March 16. FACTS: Nilda B. but failed to do so. Dante. (2) that the present spouse wishes to remarry. 214243. Cebu. a member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). Other than making inquiries from Dante’s family. She filed before the RTC a petition to declare Dante as presumptively dead for the purpose of remarriage. and went to Jolo. Under Article 41 of the Family Code of the Philippines. and (4) that the present spouse files a summary proceeding for the declaration of presumptive death of the absentee. but more importantly. Nilda made no further efforts to find her husband. affirming that she exerted efforts to find Dante by inquiring from his parents. Since then. (3) that the present spouse has a well-founded belief that the absentee is dead. and neighbors. The premise is that Article 41 of the Family Code places upon the present spouse the burden of complying with the stringent requirement of "well-founded belief which can only be discharged upon a showing of proper and honest-to-goodness inquiries and efforts to ascertain not only the absent spouse's whereabouts.R. ISSUE: Was Nilda able to establish the stringent requirement of well-founded belief that Dante was already dead in order to correctly obtain a judicial declaration of presumptive death? HELD: NO. Nilda heard no news from Dante. She did not even seek the help of the authorities or the AFP itself in finding 13 . 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. Three days thereafter. CA affirmed. whether the latter is still alive or is already dead. or two (2) consecutive years if the disappearance occurred where there is danger of death under the circumstances laid down in Article 391 of the Civil Code. RTC granted the petition. Tampus (Nilda) was married to Dante L. who. She averred that she intends to remarry and move on with her life. NILDA B. She tried everything to locate him. unfortunately. were also not aware of his whereabouts.THE REQUIREMENT OF WELL-FOUNDED BELIEF CAN ONLY BE DISCHARGED UPON A SHOWING OF PROPER AND HONEST-TO-GOODNESS INQUIRIES AND EFFORTS TO ASCERTAIN THE DEATH OF THE SPOUSE REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. Del Mundo (Dante) in Cordova. The burden of proof rests on the present spouse to show that all the foregoing requisites exist. left respondent. TAMPUS G. there are four (4) essential requisites for the declaration of presumptive death: (1) that the absent spouse has been missing for four (4) consecutive years. led her to believe that he is already dead especially since his last assignment was a combat mission. She could have called or proceeded to the AFP headquarters to request information about her husband. Due to the absence of any opposition. but her efforts proved futile. relatives. Sulu where he was assigned. Nilda was allowed to present her evidence ex parte. She testified on the allegations in her petition. No.

no other corroborative evidence had been offered to support her allegation that she exerted efforts to find him but was unsuccessful. Finally. What appears from the facts as established in this case was that Nilda simply allowed the passage of time without actively and diligently searching for her husband. Furthermore. relatives. or neighbors as witnesses who could have corroborated her asseverations that she earnestly looked for Dante. These resource persons were not even named. other than Nilda's bare testimony. Whether or not the spouse present acted on a well-founded belief of death of the absent spouse depends upon the inquiries to be drawn from a great many circumstances occurring before and after the disappearance of the absent spouse and the nature and extent of the inquiries made by the present spouse. Nilda did not present Dante's family. which the Court cannot accept as constituting a "well-founded belief that her husband is dead.him. 14 .

failed to do so. The RTC rendered judgment dismissing the Andrades’ complaint. ISSUE: Are the subject properties exclusive properties of Rosario? HELD: Yes. Sr. In this respect. ET. Rosario sold the same to Bobby and her son. Sr. which she mortgaged to and subsequently foreclosed. GRACE ANDRADE.AL. Bobby extended an Option to Buy the subject properties in favor of Proceso.. Jr. Jr. Jr.ALL PROPERTY OF THE MARRIAGE IS PRESUMED TO BELONG TO THE CONJUGAL PARTNERSHIP. Article 160 of the Civil Code states that "[a]ll property of the marriage is presumed to belong to the conjugal partnership. Sr." For this presumption to apply. (Proceso. giving the latter a certain date to purchase the same. No. 171904 & 172017. 15 ." The CA held that subject properties belong to the conjugal partnership of Rosario and her late husband. and thus. FACTS: Rosario Vda. Notwithstanding the assignment. In their complaint. Jr.’s failure to exercise his option to buy back the subject properties. however. Bobby consolidated his ownership over the subject properties. the RTC found that they "appeared to be the exclusive properties of Rosario. Proceso Andrade. the sale was valid only with respect to Rosario’s pro-indiviso share in the subject properties and it cannot prejudice the share of the Andrades since they did not consent to the sale. the Andrades. Proceso Andrade.. In his defense. preliminarily prove that the property was indeed acquired during the marriage. UNLESS IT BE PROVED THAT IT PERTAINS EXCLUSIVELY TO THE HUSBAND AND WIFE BOBBY TAN vs.R. Thereafter. When Proceso. she co-owned the same together with her children. the subject properties are the exclusive properties of Rosario. Jr. As regards the nature of the subject properties. ceded unto Bobby his rights and interests over the subject properties. and thus. When the redemption period was about to expire.). and the TCTs therefor were issued in his name. Rosario’s children (Andrades) filed a complaint for reconveyance and annulment of deeds of conveyance and damages against Bobby before the RTC. unless it be proved that it pertains exclusively to the husband or to the wife. August 7. Rosario had no right to dispose of their respective shares therein. 2013 PERLAS-BERNABE. G. the subject properties were conjugal in nature. Rosario sought the assistance of Bobby Tan (Bobby) who agreed to redeem the subject properties. the party invoking the same must. J.). they claimed that since they inherited the subject properties from their father. Proceso. Accordingly. Jr. the CA ordered Bobby to reconvey to the Andrades their share in the subject properties. De Andrade (Rosario) was the registered owner of four parcels of land situated in Cebu City (subject properties). (Proceso. Bobby contended that the subject properties were solely owned by Rosario per the TCTs issued in her name and that he had validly acquired the same upon Proceso. Proceso.

widow. of legal age. Moreover. Rosario’s declaration that she is the absolute owner of the disputed parcels of land in the subject deed of sale was not disputed by her son Proceso. Hence. by virtue of these incidents.. Filipino. 16 . de Andrade. the Court agreed with petitioner Josefina’s declaration in the deed of absolute sale she executed in favor of the respondent that she was the absolute and sole owner of the property. however. Jr." Other than their bare allegation. Records reveal that the conjugal partnership of Rosario and her husband was terminated upon the latter’s death on August 7. In this case. there is no evidence to indicate when the property was acquired by petitioner Josefina. 1978 while the transfer certificates of title over the subject properties were issued on September 28. Thus. no evidence was adduced by the Andrades to establish that the subject properties were procured during the coverture of their parents or that the same were bought with conjugal funds.For this presumption to apply. the party invoking the same must. the Court upholds the RTC’s finding that the subject properties were exclusive or sole properties of Rosario. 1979 and solely in the name of "Rosario Vda. preliminarily prove that the property was indeed acquired during the marriage. who was a party to the same.

the CA did not give credence to the said document there being no credible proof as to the partition of the lot.: FACTS: Herein petitioners. BASED ON THE ALLEGATION OF POSSESSION BY TOLERANCE FALLS UNDER THE CATEGORY OF UNLAWFUL DETAINER BONIFACIO PIEDAD. and for this purpose. Both the MTC and RTC ruled in favor Bonifacio deciding that there was sufficient documentary and testimonial evidence to show that Bonifacio indeed had better possessory rights over the subject lot. the same failed as the former refued to heed Danao’s demand. the subject lot was a vacant and virginal public land and that the DENR allowed them to possess and occupy the same in the concept of an owner. Bonifacio filed a protest through an agent before the DENR which deferred further action on Spouses Gurieza’s application before it. and filed an application for survey authority and titling. On this lot. MARIA PIEDAD v. personally demanded that Spouses Gurieza vacate the subject lot unconditionally. They likewise assailed the authenticity and validity of the Deed of Confirmation.R. The CA however found. As such.AN EJECTMENT CASE. The existence of a Deed of Confirmation of an Adjudication and Partition (Deed of Confirmation) executed by Alejandro and Tomasa’s legal heirs also evidenced Bonifacio’s ownership of the subject lot. Bonifacio built a bungalow and assigned numerous caretakers to look after it. Danao initiated a complaint before the barangay court. that some of the other heirs of Alejandro and Tomasa did not sign the Deed of Confirmation. Bonifacio Piedad and Maria Piedad (Spouses Bonifacio) claimed absolute ownership of the 1/3 middle portion of Lot 1227 (subject lot). the partition taking place and deed being executed even before the death of Bonifacio’s father. Bonifacio’s daughter. Victorio Gurieza and Emeteria M. ISSUE: Will a Complaint for Unlawful Detainer prosper despite the fact that the plaintiff allowed the defendant to occupy the lot by tolerance? 17 . June 18. As such. prompting the institution of this case. Gurieza (Spouses Gurieza). the last of which were respondent spouses. However. 207525. 2014 PERLAS-BERNABE. Maria Inspiracion Piedad-Danao (Danao). contending that it was only signed by a few heirs of Alejandro and Tomasa. upon further scrutiny of the Deed of Confirmation. they acquired the same through acquisitive prescription. No. They also caused a subdivision survey of the lot. Alejandro Piedad (Alejandro) and Tomasa Villaray (Tomasa). J. Spouses Gurieza declared the subject lot under their name for tax purposes after allegedly learning from DENR that the same is public land. SPOUSES VICTORIO and EMETERIA GURIEZA G. Spouses Gurieza denied Bonifacio’s claim and maintained that in 1974. Bonifacio acquired the same through intestate succession from his late father who also inherited the same from the latter’s parents.

An ejectment case. the defendant remained in possession of the property and deprived the plaintiff the enjoyment thereof.HELD: Yes. based on the allegation of possession by tolerance. (b) eventually. Thus. under Section 1. Rule 70 of the Rules of Court. either by virtue of a contract or by tolerance of the plaintiff. the complaint must be filed "within one (1) year after such unlawful deprivation or withholding of possession" and must allege that: (a) the defendant originally had lawful possession of the property. and (d) within one (1) year from the unlawful deprivation or withholding of possession. Corollary thereto. In this light. the Court shall solely resolve the issue as to who between the parties has the better right of possession de facto over the subject lot. Where the plaintiff allows the defendant to use his/her property by tolerance without any contract. the defendant is necessarily bound by an implied promise. falls under the category of unlawful detainer. issues pertaining to ownership are better threshed out in another action instituted for such purpose. (c) thereafter. 18 . the defendant’s possession of the property became illegal or unlawful upon notice by the plaintiff to defendant of the expiration or the termination of the defendant’s right of possession. the plaintiff instituted the complaint for ejectment.

J. allowing the latter to tend the standing mango trees. All the above elements must concur 19 . Subsequently. and (f) there is sharing of the harvests between the parties. after the EDSA Revolution.R. (e) there is personal cultivation by the tenant.: FACTS: Golden Country Farms. (c) there is consent between the parties. the following essential elements must be shown: (a) the parties are the landowner and the tenant. 2014 PERLAS-BERNABE. DEPARTMENT O F AGRARIAN REFORM ADJUDICATION BOARD G. Petitioner Ricardo V. the consent of the landowner should be secured prior to the installation of tenants. Incorporated (GCFI) is the owner of a parcel of land (subject property) consisting of a mango orchard and a rice plantation. The controversy began when Quintos was informed by APT of the notice from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) placing the riceland under compulsory acquisition pursuant to the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) of the government. In this relation. Thereafter. the payment of which was to be remitted to Quintos. THE CONSENT OF THE LANDOWNER SHOULD BE SECURED PRIOR TO THE INSTALLATION OF TENANTS. except as may be provided by law. Thereafter. For a tenancy relationship to exist between the parties. PNB and DBP transferred their financial claims to Asset Privatization Trust. QUINTOS vs. (b) the subject matter is agricultural land.00 per tree. Quintos is the majority stockholder of GCFI who managed its properties until management was taken over by Armando Romualdez. Tenancy is a legal relationship established by the existence of particular facts as required by law.THE RIGHT TO HIRE A TENANT IS A PERSONAL RIGHT OF A LANDOWNER. No. Inc. APT Officer-in-Charge Cesar Lacuesta entered into a verbal agreement with 53 members of private respondent Kanlurang Mindoro Farmers’ Cooperative. Romualdez executed a real estate mortgage on the subject property to secure the loans obtained from Philippines National Bank and Development Bank of the Philippines. RICARDO V. (d) the purpose is agricultural production. ISSUE: May a possessor of a land pursuant to a mortgage contract enter into a tenancy agreement binding against the owner of the land? HELD: No. EXCEPT AS MAY BE PROVIDED BY LAW. February 10. Quintos reacquired the possession and management of the subject properties. 207525. and gather the fruits at ₱300. In 1987. (KAMIFCI). KAMIFCI filed an action for the peaceful possession and enjoyment of the subject property against Quintos before the Office of the Provincial Adjudicator. Hence. it bears stressing that the right to hire a tenant is basically a personal right of a landowner. induce their flowering.

It is settled that a mortgagee does not become the owner of the mortgaged property until he has foreclosed the mortgage and. Thus. GCFI.in order to create a tenancy relationship. Thus. had not been secured by APT in this case. thereafter. bereft of any showing that APT was authorized by the property’s landowner.e. a de jure tenant entitled to security of tenure under existing tenancy laws. purchased the property at the foreclosure sale. however. With the foreclosure proceedings having been enjoined. a cultivator or a planter thereon.. To be sure. it had no authority to enter into any tenancy agreement with the KAMIFCI members. i. The DARAB and the CA both considered ATP is legal possessor at the time tenancy was created. 20 . Records are. PNB and DBP. APT only assumed the rights of the original mortgagees in this case. the absence of one does not make an occupant of a parcel of land. since the consent of the standing landowner. to install tenants thereon. GCFI. APT could not have been regarded as the "landowner" of the subject property.

Uy. ROSARIO AND WILSON UY G. In Civil Case No. SHIRLEY ONG AMD RUBEN ANG ONG vs. while Wong- Ong property is at the same level with the subject road. 2. Rana before the RTC.R. 2014 PERLAS-BERNABE. J. On the opposite side of the subject road.R. abutting a 10-meter wide subdivision road (subject road). alleging that a resurvey of their property showed that Sps. 192862. AND SPS. ISSUES: 1. June 30. Rana filed with another branch of the same trial court a Complaint for Recovery of Property and Damages against Sps. The said lots follow a rolling terrain with the Rana property standing about two meters higher than and overlooking the Uy property. Sps. 192861 SPS. 21 . No. ROSARIO AND WILSON UY. Ong and Sps. CEB-21296. CEB-20893. Rana likewise backfilled a portion (subject backfilling) of the perimeter fence separating the Rana and Uy properties without erecting a retaining wall that would hold the weight of the added filling materials. Uy be ordered to remove their fence along the common boundary and return the encroached portion. CEB-21296. They prayed that Sps. During the pendency of the case. IT MAY NOT BE SUMMARILY ABATED LINDA RANA vs. SHIRLEY LEE ONG AND RUBEN ANG. whether or not the subject portion is a nuisance. No. Sps. across the Wong-Ong property. AND SPS. Sps. docketed as Civil Case No. FACTS: Teresita Lee Wong and Spouses Shirley and Ruben Ang Ong are co-owners pro-indiviso of a residential land in Cebu City (Wong-Ong property). Rana elevated and cemented a portion of the subject road that runs between the Rana and Wong- Ong properties (subject portion) in order to level the said portion with their gate. In Civil Case No. Uy encroached upon a portion along the common boundary of their properties.UNLESS A NUISANCE IS A NUISANCE PER SE. TERESITA LEE WONG. whether or not there was encroachment upon the Rana property. REYNALDO AND LINDA RANA G. Wong. Sps. Uy filed a Complaint for Abatement of Nuisance with Damages against Sps. SPS. CEB-20893. docketed as Civil Case No. claiming that both the elevated and cemented subject portion and the subject backfilling are "nuisances" caused/created by the latter which curtailed their use and enjoyment of their properties. SPS. are the adjacent lots of Spouses Wilson and Rosario Uy and Spouses Reynaldo and Linda Rana.

condition of property. It was built primarily to facilitate the ingress and egress of Sps. the party 22 . In this regard. danger or damage upon individuals may be unequal”). and its existence being a question of fact. the Court finds that Sps. a nuisance may either be: (a) a nuisance per se (or one which “affects the immediate safety of persons and property and may be summarily abated under the undefined law of necessity”). Rana’s subject portion remains unwarranted. or anything else which: (1) injures or endangers the health or safety of others. In this regard.’s demolition of Sps. the elevated and cemented subject portion is not injurious to the health or comfort of the community. Civil Case No. et al. the term “nuisance” is deemed to be “so comprehensive that it has been applied to almost all ways which have interfered with the rights of the citizens. or (4) obstructs or interferes with the free passage of any public highway or street. the enjoyment of his property. et. m.HELD: Civil Case No. it may not be summarily abated. CEB-21296 YES. or (b) a private nuisance (or one “that is not included in the foregoing definition” [or. Under Article 694 of the Civil Code. either in person. the Court finds that the same as a nuisance – but not a nuisance per se that can be summarily abated. however. or (3) Shocks. Uy had actually encroached upon the Rana property to the extent of 2 sq. business. Rana from their house which was admittedly located on a higher elevation than the subject road and the adjoining Uy and Wong-Ong properties. defies or disregards decency or morality. By constructing the subject portion. it cannot be summarily abated.” Article 695 of the Civil Code classifies nuisances with respect to the object or objects that they affect. although the extent of the annoyance. corrective action without prior judicial permission). With respect to the elevated and cemented subject portion. Rana introduced a nuisance per accidens that particularly transgressed the rights of Wong. or any body of water. It is a standing jurisprudential rule that unless a nuisance is a nuisance per se. Since the subject portion is not a nuisance per se (but actually a nuisance per accidens). or (2) annoys or offends the senses. a nuisance may either be: (a) a public nuisance (or one which “affects a community or neighborhood or any considerable number of persons. Wong. or (b) a nuisance per accidens (or that which “depends upon certain conditions and circumstances. Sps. it cannot be abated without due hearing thereon in a tribunal authorized to decide whether such a thing does in law constitute a nuisance. Settled is the rule that in order that an action for the recovery of property may prosper. one which “violates only private rights and produces damages to but one or a few persons”]). property. or his comfort. CEB-20893 YES. Jurisprudence further classifies nuisances in relation to their legal susceptibility to summary abatement (that is. as case law puts it. a nuisance is defined as “any act. establishment. or (5) hinders or impairs the use of property. al.” Based on case law. omission. As such.”) By its nature.

Uy’s perimeter fence intruded on 2 sq. Sps. of the Rana property. the Report of the court-appointed commissioner who conducted a relocation survey of the Rana and Uy properties identified and delineated the boundaries of the two properties and showed that Sps. 23 . In the present case. Rana are therefore entitled to return of the encroached portion. m.prosecuting the same need only prove the identity of the thing and his ownership thereof.

and they registered the corresponding Deeds of sale with the Register of Deeds of Baguio City. prescription/laches/estoppel. Baguio City. JURISDICTION AS TO WHO HAS BETTER RIGHT WITH DIRECTOR OF LANDS BERNADETTE S. Respondents further alleged that they have been in continuous possession of the said lands since 1976 when they were delivered to them and that they have already introduced various improvements thereon. RTC Br. and res judicata.R. J. 5881-R as the plaintiffs therein seek to quiet title over lands which belong to the public domain. 189950. Respondents alleged that petitioner’s predecessors-in-interest sold to them separately various portions of a 159. ET AL. ET AL. 5881-R and dismissing the earlier filed civil case No.496 square meter parcel of land designated by Bureau of Lands situated at Sitio Benin. 496 square meter parcel of land designated by the Bureau of Lands situated at Sitio Benin. 3934-R where respondents similarly sought to be declared the owners of the subject property. 24 . their action to quiet title is imprescriptible. res judicata is not a bar to the present suit. the nature of the action differs. Petitioners refused to honor the forgoing sales and continued to harass and threatened to demolish their improvements. The CA concluded that while these cases may involve the same properties. 2017 PERLAS-BERNABE. A review of the records shows that the subject property form part of a 159. April 24. ESTELLA AY-AY. Respondents then appealed to the CA which set aside the dismissal of the civil case and remanded the case to the court a quo for trial. a portion of which was awarded to Iloc Bilag. hence. 61 has no jurisdiction over Civil Case No. The CA is incorrect. Baguio City. BILAG. FACTS: This case stemmed from a complaint for quieting of title with prayer for preliminary injunction filed by respondents against the petitioners. The RTC ruled in favor of the petitioners. ordered the dismissal of civil case No. VS. ISSUE: Is the CA correct in declaring that the subject property is within the RTC’s jurisdiction for quieting of title? HELD: No.LANDS BELONGING TO PUBLIC DOMAIN NOT COGNIZABLE BY COURTS IN AN ACTION FOR QUIETING OF TITLE. No. The CA pointed out that in view of respondent’s allegation that they have been in possession of the subject property since 1976. G. Such parcel of land forms part of the Baguio Town site Reservation. Petitioners filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds of lack of jurisdiction.

and to remove a cloud upon or quiet title to land where stale or unenforceable claims or demands exist. which must be shown to be in fact invalid or inoperative despite its prima facie appearance of validity. and (2) that there is a cloud on his title by reason of any instrument." Under Articles 476 and 477 of the Civil Code. In this case. encumbrance or proceeding. record. to free him from the danger of hostile claim. deed. since the subject land belong to the public domain. 25 . the two indispensable requisites in an action to quiet title are: (1) that the plaintiff has a legal or equitable title to or interest in the real property subject of the action. respondents cannot be said to have legal or equitable title over said land. the complainant is seeking for "an adjudication that a claim of title or interest in property adverse to the claimant is invalid.In an action for quieting of title. claim.

June 15.QUIETING OF TITLE. Also. and uninterrupted possession of the subject land. Corazon S. hence. and damages. peaceful. FACTS: Jose filed Civil Case for quieting of title with recovery of possession. respondents (Manuel and Marlon) continuously refused to deliver the produce of the land or vacate the same despite his repeated demands. he placed one parcel in Manuel's care. and in the concept of owner for almost fifty (50) years. in exchange for which. MANUEL EXTREMADURA AND MARLON EXTREMADURA G. while equitable title means beneficial ownership. or interest in. REQUISITES. Alfredo H. the widow of his uncle. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. it is essential that the plaintiff must have legal or equitable title to. where their residential house stands. adverse. For an action to quiet tide to prosper. respondents averred that they have been in open. Unfortunately. rendition of accounting. HELD: YES. the property which is the subject matter of the action. the latter and his son. Barrio Rizal. In their defense. which was notarized and. observing that the notarized deed of sale executed in Jose's favor did not transfer the land's ownership to him given that he was never placed in possession and control thereof. 1984. claiming that he (Jose) purchased three (3) parcels of agricultural land located in Sitio Ponong. Extremadura (Alfredo). Marlon. continuous. through a Deed of Absolute Sale dated December 18.R. LEGAL OR EQUITABLE TITLE. REMOVAL OF CLOUD THEREON HEIRS OF JOSE EXTREMADURA v. enjoys the presumption of regularity. CA held that Jose failed to establish legal and equitable title over the subject land. they argued that the deed of absolute sale presented by Jose is not the legal or beneficial title contemplated by Article 476 of the Civil Code. Jose's action was already barred by prescription or laches. Since Jose resided in Manila. No. Extremadura (Corazon). They further claimed that the fact that they gave Jose portions of the land's produce was merely in keeping with the Filipino culture of sharing blessings with siblings and relatives. J. religiously delivered the produce of said land from 1984 until 1995. and his nephew. two indispensable requisites must concur. 211065. Casiguran. ISSUE: Whether petitioner has legal or equitable title allowing him to file an action for quieting of title. Legal title denotes registered ownership. thus. Marlon Extremadura (Marlon). therefore. namely: (1) the plaintiff or complainant has a 26 . In order for an action for quieting of title to prosper. against his brother. RTC ruled that Jose had a better right over the land as proven by the deed of absolute sale executed in his favor. Manuel Extremadura (Manuel). Sorsogon from his aunt. the complaint.

or by the fact that it is subject to the action of our will.and now. as evidenced by a notarized document denominated as Deed of Absolute Sale. Possession may be exercised in one's own name or in that of another. Equitable title has been defined as "[a] title derived through a valid contract or relation. In this relation. Jose's title to the subject land was derived through a contract of sale. the owner of real estate has possession. 27 . Primarily. it should be stressed that "[possession is acquired by the material occupation of a thing or the exercise of a right. the claim of respondents that they are the owners thereof. his son. he must show that the one from whom he derives his right had himself a right to transfer." Jose exercised possession of the subject land through Manuel (and eventually. the right in the party.was able to prove his title over the subject land. but also as evinced by his exercise of the rights and obligations as owner thereof.not only through the execution of the Deed of Absolute Sale in his favor. In other words. either when he himself is physically in occupation of the property.to the removal of the cloud or doubt thereon. encumbrance. case law teaches that "[i]t is not necessary that the owner of a parcel of land should himself occupy the property as someone in his name may perform the act. claim. particularly. or proceeding claimed to be casting cloud on his title must be shown to be in fact invalid or inoperative despite its prima facie appearance of validity or legal efficacy. to have the legal title transferred to him." In this case. Jose . Jose satisfactorily established his equitable title over the subject land entitling him . x x x. recognized equitable principles. Marlon) whom he allowed to stay and care for the land in exchange for the delivery of the produce thereof.legal or an equitable title to or interest in the real property subject of the action. and based on. or when another person who recognizes his rights as owner is in such occupancy." as the parties in this case. x x x. to whom it belongs. Article 524 of the Civil Code states: Art. or by the proper acts and legal formalities established for acquiring such right. petitioners as his successors-in-interest . 524. In order that a plaintiff may draw to himself an equitable title. and (2) the deed.

a complaint for forcible entry was filed against petitioners. and ownership is merely ancillary to such issue. the identity of which petitioners did not contest. However. Respondent. who maintained that the land they occupied is the 8-hectare land they bought from Alvarez.: FACTS: Respondent Pangilinan acquired from Felomina Abid a 5. or actual possession. was surprised to see that the 5. JOSEFINA PANGILINAN G.A PERSON NEED NOT HAVE HIS FEET ON EVERY SQUARE METER OF THE LAND TO ESTABLISH PHYSICAL POSSESSION SPOUSES FAHRENBACH V. They claimed that the land was never fenced nor was a caretaker appointed by respondent to oversee the land. Records disclose that respondent occasionally visited the subject lot since she acquired the same from Abid in September 1995. She even paid the lot's realty taxes.78-hectare land was being occupied by petitioners. the same lot was apparently sold by Abid to Columbino Alvarez through a Deed of Sale.78-hectare parcel of land through a Waiver of Rights. independently of any claim of ownership or possession de Jure that either party may set forth in his pleading. Notably. 2017 PERLAS-BERNABE. In fact. 224549. In any case. ISSUE: Whether or not Pangilinan had prior physical possession of the land and as such may file an action for forcible entry HELD: Yes. Pangilinan had prior physical possession of the land and thus may file a forcible entry case. J. respondent had sufficiently proven her prior possession de facto of the subject lot. It is well-settled that the only question that the courts must resolve in forcible entry or unlawful detainer cases is who between the parties is entitled to the physical or material possession of the property in dispute. August 07. as well as requested for a survey authority thereon. however. the plaintiff must prove that it was in prior physical possession of the premises until it was deprived thereof by the defendant.R. The main issue is possession de facto. The principal issue must be possession de facto. petitioner argued that Pangilinan had no right to file the forcible entry case because the latter did not have prior physical possession of the lot. In forcible entry. Respondent argued that she has been paying realty taxes and has been visiting the land every now and then. No. Hence. she submitted old photographs showing herself on the subject lot. Unknown to respondent. and what he bought was really a 8-hectare parcel of land elsewhere. not the one owned by Pangilinan. jurisprudence states that the law does not require a person to have his feet on 28 . In this case. Alvarez discovered that the Deed of Sale has erroneously described the land subject of the sale.

In Bunyi v. after Alvarez executed the corresponding Deed of Sale in their favor. Hence." In contrast. 29 . by itself. does not result in loss of possession of the subject property.every square meter of the ground before it can be said that he is in possession thereof. Factor. petitioners themselves claim that they began occupying the subject lot only in August 2005. the Court held that "visiting the property on weekends and holidays is evidence of actual or physical possession. The fact of her residence somewhere else. there is no doubt that respondent had prior de facto possession.

Petitioner explained he purchased the subject land from Garcia. ISSUE: Whether the petitioner is the true owner of the agricultural land he purchased in 1982? HELD: NO. 30 . as well as the cancellation of respondent Juan Mina’s title over the said property based on an emancipation patent issued by DAR in May 1990. Likewise. seeks to have his landholding exempted from the coverage of the government’s Operation Land Transfer (OLT) program since his landholding is within the retention limits of the said program.R. All of the administrative agencies such as DARAB and DAR Secretary among others found that the petitioner is the true owner and ordered the cancellation of respondents patent among other reliefs. June 5. Notably. The Court ruled that PD 27 prohibits the transfer of ownership over tenanted rice and/or corn lands after October 21. He further assails that he was surprised of the grant of the emancipation patent to the respondent for he alleged that he received no notice. petitioner. 2013 PERLAS – BERNABE. of which petitioner was not. petitioner is tied down to his initial theory that his claim of ownership over the subject property was based on the 1982 deed of sale. Petitioner then offered statements to the effect that there was already an oral sale made between him and Garcia in 1976 and was formalized only in 1982. Aggrieved.TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP OVER TENANTED RICE AND/OR CORN LANDS AFTER OCTOBER 21. its previous owner in 1982 as evidenced by a deed of absolute sale. 1972 except only in favor of the actual tenant-tillers thereon. 1972 IS ALLOWED ONLY IN FAVOR OF THE ACTUAL TENANT-TILLERS THEREON JOSELITO BORROMEO VS JUAN MINA G. as earlier discussed. 1972 except to the tenant-beneficiaries thereof. he then occupied the subject property in 1976 and allowed the respondent to cultivate the said property out of mercy and compassion. respondent appealed to the CA which reversed the Secretary’s decision. No. the status of respondent as tenant is now beyond dispute considering petitioner’s admission of such fact. in this regard the petitioner claims that the respondent cannot be considered as a tenant and as such his emancipation patent be cancelled. J: FACTS: Joselito Borromeo. 193747. and ruled that the sale was null and void since PD 27 which forbids the transfers or alienation of covered agricultural lands after October 21.

in consequence the petitioner cannot present claim for land holding exemption because his title spring from an null and void source for being contrary to law.Therefore. as Garcia sold the property in 1982 to the petitioner who is evidently not the tenant-beneficiary of the same. 31 .

however. Remegio Navares (Remegio) previously bought the said property. Emiliana Bacalso (Emiliana). took over the possession of the same. pursuant to Decree No. (c) after Emiliana’s death. they become proof of ownership when accompanied by proof of actual possession such as petitioners’ continuous declaration of the subject property for taxation purposes. she claimed that petitioners’ predecessor-in-interest. seeking as well the payment of damages.452 square meter parcel of land situated in Inawayan. and a certified copy from page 19 of the daybook of cadastral lots issued by the Register of Deeds (RD) of Cebu City (daybook entry). Based on their complaint and the testimonies of their witnesses during trial. Remegio. 32 . ET AL. 2013 PERLAS-BERNABE. and (d) the subject property had been declared by them for taxation purposes and they paid the corresponding realty taxes due thereon. and the construction of their respective houses thereon. a 4. For their part. petitioners Leopoldo. CA reversed the RTC on the ground that the documentary evidence adduced by respondents outweighs the self-serving testimonies of petitioners. and (e) when they confronted Alejandra. CA stressed that tax declarations and tax receipts are not conclusive evidence of ownership or of the right to possess the land when not supported by other evidence of actual possession which remained wanting in this case. 8217. respondents alleged that: (a) the subject property was owned by their predecessor-in-interest. AVELINA RABADON. Cebu City (subject property) from petitioners. she and her children. took over its possession until 1988.R. its existence could still be shown by a certification (LRA certification) issued by the Land Registration Authority (LRA). J. his children. Genaro Rabadon took over the possession of the subject property and upon his death. who bought the foregoing even before the second World War. she could not produce the same. when they asked to see a copy of the deed of sale. (c) Alejandra inherited the subject property by virtue of an extra-judicial settlement and after its execution. (b) the subject property was issued a certificate of title in the name of Remegio. on the reason that while tax declarations and tax receipts are not incontrovertible evidence of ownership. RTC ruled that petitioners (Delfin) had the better right to the ownership and possession of the subject property. Francisco and Marcelito Delfin. their payments of the corresponding taxes. (d) in 1989. Pardo. herein respondents. however. 98992.TAX DECLARATIONS AND TAX RECEIPTS MAY ONLY BECOME THE BASIS OF A CLAIM FOR OWNERSHIP WHEN THEY ARE COUPLED WITH PROOF OF ACTUAL POSSESSION OF THE PROPERTY HEIRS OF ALEJANDRA DELFIN v. 165014 July 31.: FACTS: Respondents filed before the RTC an action to recover the ownership and possession of Lot No. No. (b) while the foregoing decree was lost during the last World War. petitioners countered that: (a) they inherited the subject property from their predecessor- in-interest. G. they discovered that the said property was already in the possession of petitioner Alejandra Delfin (Alejandra) and some of her children and their families already constructed their houses thereon. On appeal. the said title was lost.

33 . which indicates true and legal ownership by the registered owners over the disputed premises. 98992. records are bereft of any showing that petitioners. By the issuance of the decree. Accordingly. Against an array of proofs consisting of tax declarations and/or tax receipts which are not conclusive evidence of ownership nor proof of the area covered therein. The tax declarations and tax receipts are insufficient to prove their proffered theory that their predecessor-in-interest. have been in actual possession of the subject property prior to 1989 as they claim. pales in comparison to that of respondents’ evidence which consists of a decree of ownership. tax declarations and tax receipts may only become the basis of a claim for ownership when they are coupled with proof of actual possession of the property. 98992. While the actual copy of the said decree was lost. was the lawful possessor and owner of the foregoing property even before the last World War. or any of their predecessors-in-interest. petitioners altogether failed to prove the legitimacy of Remegio's possession and ownership since they failed to present the pe1iinent deed of sale or any other evidence of the latter's title. the land is bound and title thereto quieted. the RTC itself observed that it is undisputable that the subject property has been issued Decree No. for which an original certificate of title was issued to Emiliana. under the name of their predecessor-in-interest. It is an elemental rule that a decree of registration bars all claims and rights which arose or may have existed prior to the decree of registration. respondents’ Decree No.e. On the contrary. As may be gleaned from the records. as the CA notes.ISSUE: Whether tax declarations and tax receipts are sufficient to establish right to ownership and right to possession over the subject property? HELD: No. Remegio. must prevail. Likewise. Decree No. an original certificate of title. In fact. 98992 for which an original certificate of title was issued should be accorded greater weight as against the tax declarations and tax receipts presented by petitioners in this case. the probative value of petitioners’ evidence. the existence of the said decree was actually proven by the LRA certification and the daybook entry. In this case.. which consist of tax declarations and tax receipts. respondents have shown a better right to the ownership and possession of the subject property and hence. Besides. Emiliana. appears to be an unbiased witness. by sheer preponderance of evidence. All told. subject only to certain exceptions under the property registration decree. i. aside from the LRA certification and daybook entry which prove the existence of Decree No. must be awarded the same. respondents' possession of the subject property prior to petitioners' entry in 1989 was attested to by one Marcelina Tabora who. 98992.

Petitioner alleged that he is one of the sons of the late Vicente T. The RTC reversed and set aside the MTC ruling. COMPLAINANT MUST JUSTIFY HIS RIGHT TO THE DE FACTO POSSESSION (PHYSICAL OR MATERIAL POSSESSION) OF THE DISPUTED PREMISES HOMER C. portion thereof. who was the owner of a 360 sq. and where the subject building was erected. m. he indeed was the owner and in physical possession of the subject land. It found that Vicente actually subdivided the subject land into two (2) lots: the first lot. together with his mother. Upon Vicente’s death. m. Since his birth.. petitioner. m. m. 2007. but was eventually acquired by respondent from the latter through sale. Respondent admitted that during Vicente’s lifetime. Hence. such that the former issue cannot be determined without ruling on who really owns such land. It held that the issue of possession of the subject land is intimately intertwined with the issue of ownership. was given to petitioner.FOR A CASE OF FORCIBLE ENTRY TO PROSPER. Javier (Vicente). with an area of 187. with an area of 172.R. she took possession of the said portion not as an illegal entrant but as its owner. . Nevertheless. 00-TY-002-11458. petitioner’s family has lived in the residential house erected thereon. while the second lot.80 sq. 34 . continued their possession over the same. being the owner and possessor of the property in question. parcel of land covered by Tax Declaration (TD) No. On March 26. 2014 PERLAS-BERNABE. The RTC found that petitioner. son of Vicente by a previous failed marriage. as evidenced by a Tax Declaration in her name.: FACTS: This case originated from a forcible entry Complaint filed by petitioner against respondent before the MTC.20 sq. despite petitioner’s vigorous objections and protests. The MTC dismissed the complaint for want of cause of action and lack of jurisdiction. she claimed to be the owner of the portion where the subject building was being constructed. December 3. SUSAN LUMONTAD G. has the right to be respected in his possession and that respondent forcibly and unlawfully deprived him of the same. The CA set aside the RTC ruling and remanded the case to the latter court for trial on the merits. was given to one Anthony de la Paz Javier (Anthony). respondent gained entry into the subject land and started to build a two (2)-storey building on a 150 sq. ISSUE: Whether or not the Complaint for Forcible Entry of the Petitioner must prosper. J. No. 203760. JAVIER V. and accordingly ordered respondent to vacate the disputed portion and surrender possession thereof to petitioner.

35 . or the supposed document from which petitioner hinges his right to the de facto possession of the subject land. and the counter-evidence showing respondent's right to the de facto possession of the 172. with no evidence in support of petitioner's stance.80 sq. portion of the subject land. 00-TY-002-12824 given by Vicente to Anthony. m.20 sq. 00-TY-002-12825 given by Vicente to petitioner. which the latter sold to respondent. considering that said tax declaration only covered petitioner’s family house and not the subject land where said improvement was built. his forcible entry complaint.80 sq. only covers his house and not the entire land itself. cannot be granted on its merits. m. Notwithstanding petitioner’s proper classification of his action. 00-TY-002- 11458. Petitioner gave a misleading description of TD No. As pointed out by the CA. as petitioner alleged in his complaint.80 sq. Further. lot covered by TD No. Respondent had the subject building constructed in the concept of being the owner of the 172. m. appears to be consistent with the claim of ownership of respondent in view of TD No.80 sq. OOTY-002-13031 covering the same property as registered in her name. namely: (a) the 187. 00-TY-002-9660. 00-TY-002-11458. nonetheless. 00-TY-002-13031 in her name. resulting in the issuance of TD No. lot covered by TD No. considering that he had failed to justify his right to the de facto possession (physical or material possession) of the disputed premises. m. Thus. portion of the subject land as he failed to demonstrate the factual circumstances that occurred during his dispossession of said property. and (b) the 172. the forcible complaint must necessarily fail. petitioner was not able to sufficiently establish that respondent employed force and intimidation in entering the 172. portion which. on the contrary. m. The subject land is separately covered by TD No. TD No.HELD: No. portion as its ostensible owner.80 sq. m. Nothing appears on record to show that he has the right to the de facto possession of the 172. which was cancelled when the land was subdivided into two (2) lots.

August 6. Pangasinan. filed on February 27. OCT No. Francisco. et al. 21481 was issued in the names of all the respondents covering the Second Accretion. Likewise.NON-RIPARIAN OWNERS CANNOT ASSERT OWNERSHIP OVER LAND DEPOSITED THROUGH ACCRETION. and Eduardo. Claiming rights over the entire Motherland. OCT No. married to Esperanza Narvarte. Basilia owned a parcel of land (Sabangan property). with respect to the First Accretion. and Pablo. Catalina (Imbornal sisters) in 1920. Maria. all surnamed Imbornal. which she conveyed to her three daughters Balbina. namely Alejandra. P-318 was issued in the name of respondent Victoriano.'s Amended Complaint is that an implied trust had arisen between 36 . IMBORNAL G. Meanwhile. abutted the First Accretion on its southern portion. respondent Victoriano. Francisco and Pedro were the children of Alejandra. On August 15. They averred that part of their agreement was for Ciriaco to hold the Motherland once the patent was approved. Felipe. Alejanda. notwithstanding the fact that they were not the riparian owners (as they did not own the Motherland to which the accretions merely formed adjacent to). Mateo. In 1971. 1462 which was later cancelled. children of Alejanda and Balbina. Catalina. the Second Accretion. Catalina’s husband. J.R. 1952. Ciriaco. On the other hand. and misrepresentation. with regard to the Second Accretion. Balbina. 1984 an Amended Complaint for reconveyance. partition. had illegally registered the said accretions in their names. fraud. They claimed that they agreed to sell the Sabangan property which they co-own with their sister Catalina. more or less. HELD: No. ISSUE: Whether a non-riparian owner can assert ownership over the land formed through accretion even if it did not possess the riparian land for the period prescribed by law to have acquisitive title. Victoriano. 2014 PERLAS-BERNABE. Sometime in 1949. covering the First Accretion. During her lifetime. Raymundo. applied for and was granted a homestead patent over a riparian land (Motherland) adjacent to the Cayanga River in San Fabian. respondents Emiliana. falsehood. No. 182908. and TCT was issued in the name his heirs. and the respondents collectively. HEIRS OF NARVASA VS. to fund the pending homestead patent application of Ciriaco (Catalina’s husband) over the Motherland. 1978. Ciriaco and his heirs has since occupied the northern portion of the Motherland. and/or damages against respondents. On November 10. they alleged that through deceit. are the descendants of Pablo. et al. while respondents occupied the southern portion. in trust for the Imbornal sisters. adjoined the southern portion of the Motherland.. the First Accretion. while petitioner Petra was the daughter of Balbina.: FACTS: Basilia Imbornal had four children. He was awarded with Homestead patent and OCT No. The main thrust of Francisco.

petitioners' action for reconveyance with respect to both accretions must altogether fail. 37 . Article 457 of the Civil Code states the rule on accretion as follows: "[t]o the owners of lands adjoining the banks of rivers belong the accretion which they gradually receive from the effects of the current of the waters". Therefore. they also have no right over the Second Accretion. So. said properties cannot be reconveyed in their favor. but by operation of law in order to satisfy the demands of justice and equity and to protect against unfair dealing or downright fraud. Lim: The reason for that preferential right is the same as the justification for giving accretions to the riparian owner. the oral evidence of Francisco. the Imbornal sisters. through prescription. independently. Consequently. as Francisco. An implied trust arises. Neither were they able to show that they acquired these properties through prescription as it was not established that they were in possession of any of them.the Imbornal sisters. Francisco. now. Weighed against the presumed regularity of the award of the homestead patent to Ciriaco and the lack of evidence showing that the same was acquired and registered by mistake or through fraud. This is especially so since on the other end of the fray lie respondents armed with a certificate of title in their names covering the First and Second Accretions coupled with their possession thereof. on the alleged verbal agreement between their predecessors. which is that accretion compensates the riparian owner for the diminutions which his land suffers by reason of the destructive force of the waters. in the case of littoral lands. and Ciriaco with respect to the Motherland. In this light. and Ciriaco. would not effectively establish their claims of ownership. their cause of action with respect to the First Accretion and. are not the riparian owners of the Motherland to which the First Accretion had attached. not from any presumed intention of the parties. et al. et al. with respect to the Motherland. they cannot assert ownership over the First Accretion. and. the discernible conclusion is that Francisco. both of which give rise to the superior credibility of their own claim. et al. failed to prove their ownership rights over the Motherland. NB: SC citing Cantoja v.. and. necessarily. the Second Accretion. whether through accretion or. Hence. the Court cannot fully accept and accord evidentiary value to the oral testimony offered by Francisco. hence. on the other. and/or petitioners' claim of title over the First and Second Accretions had not been substantiated. In this case. et al. as a result. herein petitioners. their heirs. As the Second Accretion had merely attached to the First Accretion.e. on the one hand. must likewise fail. he who loses by the encroachments of the sea should gain by its recession. i. et al.

Before Enrique’s death.R. November 12. including petitioner Richard Lopez and respondents Diana Lopez (Diana). Richard filed for the probate of the will with prayer for issuance of letters testamentary in his favor. and named Richard as the executor and administrator. J. 189984. IN THE MATTER OF PROBATE OF LAST WILL OF ENRIQUE LOPEZ v. While Article 809 allows substantial compliance for defects in the form of the attestation clause. The will actually consists of 8 pages including 38 . While the acknowledgment portion stated that the will consists of seven pages including the page on which the ratification and acknowledgment are written. The RTC disallowed the probate of the will for failure to comply with Article 805 of the Civil Code which requires a statement in the attestation clause of the number of pages used upon which the will is written. 2012 PERLAS-BERNABE. HELD: Yes. Marybeth opposed the same alleging that the last will was not executed and attested in accordance with the law and was procured through the undue and improper influence of Richard. The statement in the Acknowledgment portion of the subject last will and testament that it "consists of 7 pages including the page on which the ratification and acknowledgment are written" 10 cannot be deemed substantial compliance. No. It held that while Article 809 of the same Code requires mere substantial compliance of the form laid down in Article 805 thereof. FACTS: Enrique Lopez (Enrique) died. and four (4) legitimate children.DISCREPANCY IN THE NUMBER OF PAGES WRITTEN IN THE WILL IS NOT SUBSTANTIAL COMPLIANCE WITH THE LAW. The CA affirmed the RTC ruling. The purpose of the law is to safeguard against possible interpolation or omission of one or some of its pages and prevent any increase or decrease in the pages. The law is clear that the attestation must state the number of pages used upon which the will is written. ISSUE: Whether the discrepancy in the number of pages constitutes a failure to comply with the formalities required by law. the rule only applies if the number of pages is reflected somewhere else in the will with no evidence aliunde or extrinsic evidence required. The instrumental witnesses and the notary public testified in favor of the allowance of the will. Marybeth de Leon (Marybeth) and Victoria Tuazon (Victoria). the RTC observed that it has eight pages including the acknowledgment portion. Afterwards. Richard likewise failed in this respect. he executed a last will and testament. left his wife Wendy Lopez (Wendy). DIANA LOPEZ G.

L. 39 . the CA properly sustained the disallowance of the will. whether the subscribing witnesses are three or the will was notarized. Hence. But the total number of pages.its acknowledgment which discrepancy cannot be explained by mere examination of the will itself but through the presentation of evidence aliunde. being the only check against perjuy in the probate proceedings. On this score is the comment of Justice J.B. All these are facts that the will itself can reveal. Reyes regarding the application of Article 809. whether the signatures appear in each and every page. and defects or even omissions concerning them in the attestation clause can be safely disregarded. and whether all persons required to sign did so in the presence of each other must substantially appear in the ·attestation clause. to wit: x x x 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.

did not preclude the excluded heirs from recovering their legitimes from their co-heirs. FACTS: Anunciacion Neri (Anunciacion) had seven (7) children: two (Eutropia and Victoria) from her marriage with Gonzalo and five (Napoleon. Enrique. The RTC ordered the annulment of the Extra-Judicial Settlement of the Estate with Absolute Deed of Sale. and that Eutropia and Victoria belatedly filed their action in 1997. the heirs of Uy countered that the sale took place beyond the 5-year prohibitory period from the issuance of the homestead patents. were not bound by it. Alicia. In their amended answer with counterclaim. Anunciacion and Enrique acquired several homestead properties. 194366. Rosa and Douglas. They also denied knowledge of Eutropia and Victoria’s exclusion from the extrajudicial settlement and sale of the subject properties. the CA reversed the RTC decision holding that. and interposed further the defenses of prescription and laches. and Rosa) from her marriage with Enrique. 40 . On appeal. Napoleon. It ruled that while the sale occurred beyond the 5-year prohibitory period. the CA found it unconscionable to permit the annulment of the sale considering spouses Uy’s possession thereof for 17 years. J. NERI v. Douglas. It. they conveyed these properties to the Spouses Uy. Anunciacion died intestate. and Visminda executed an extra-judicial settlement of the estate adjudicating among themselves the homestead properties. Thereafter.R. ISSUE: Whether the extrajudicial settlement was binding upon Eutropia and Victoria. As a result. while Eutropia and Victoria had no knowledge of the extrajudicial settlement and sale of the subject properties and as such. No. the decedent’s children from her first marriage. HEIRS OF SPOUSES UY G. 2012 PERLAS-BERNABE. in his personal capacity and as natural guardian of their common children. or more than two years from knowledge of their exclusion as heirs in 1994 when their stepfather died. the sale is still void because Eutropia and Victoria were deprived of their hereditary rights and that Enrique had no judicial authority to sell the shares of his minor children. During her second marriage. however. The complaint was later amended to include Eutropia and Victoriaas additional plaintiffs for having been excluded and deprived of their legitimes as children of Anunciacion from her first marriage. Alicia. The children of Enrique then filed a complaint for the annulment of sale of the homestead properties against Spouses Uy assailing the validity of the sale for having been sold within the 5-year prohibited period from the issuance of the homestead patents. Visminda. October 10.EXTRA-JUDICIAL SETTLEMENT MUST BE KNOWN TO ALL HEIRS. Douglas and Rosa.

Section 1 provides that no extra-judicial settlement shall be binding upon any person who has not participated therein or had no notice thereof. As such. Considering that Eutropia and Victoria were admittedly excluded and that then minors Rosa and Douglas were not properly represented therein (Enrique only exercised powers of administration). dividing the inheritance in equal shares. 41 . Thus.HELD: No. upon the death of Anunciacion. The extrajudicial settlement was not binding upon Eutropia and Victoria (children from the first marriage). Napoleon. a total nullity. her children and Enrique acquired their respective inheritances. pursuant to the following articles: Art. as owners thereof. Rule 74. However. without distinction as to sex or age. All the petitioners herein are indisputably legitimate children of Anunciacion from her first and second marriage with Gonzalo and Enrique. Alicia and Visminda. the subsequent sale of the subject propertiesmade by Enrique and his children. 980: The children of the deceased shall always inherit from him in their own right. all the heirs of Anunciacion should have participated. 979: Legitimate children and their descendants succeed the parents and other ascendants. in the execution of the extrajudicial settlement of the Estate with Absolute Deed of Sale in favor of the Spouses Uy. the settlement was not valid and binding upon them and consequently.It cannot be denied that these heirs have acquired their respective shares in the properties of Anunciacion from the moment of her death and that. and consequently are entitled to inherit from her in equal shares. Art. and even if they should come from different marriages. in favor of the respondents isvalid but only with respect to their proportionate shares therein. entitling them to their pro-indiviso shares in her whole estate. while the settlement of the estate is null and void. they can very well sell their undivided share in the estate.

petitioner testified that while Lots 1. 2000 on the basis of the former’s psychological incapacity as contemplated in Article 36 of the Family Code. the two (2) houses standing on Lots 1 and 2142 as co-owned by the parties. 1980. these properties were acquired with the money he received from the Dutch government as his disability benefit since respondent did not have sufficient income to pay for their acquisition. married in March 29. December 3. a Dutch National. and respondent. 5845 and 4 out of her personal funds and Lots 2055-A and 2055-I by way of inheritance. the truth being that she used her own personal money to purchase Lots 1. AVELINA AMORES G. RTC rendered its Decision. 195670. RTC declared the nullity of their marriage in the Decision dated November 10. stressing the fact that petitioner was "well-aware of the constitutional prohibition for aliens to acquire lands in the Philippines. dissolving the parties’ conjugal partnership. Accordingly. Consequently. She submitted a joint affidavit executed by her and petitioner attesting to the fact that she purchased Lot 2142 and the improvements thereon using her own money. 2142. ISSUE: Whether the COURT erred in not sustaining the petitioner’s attempt at subsequently asserting or claiming a right of half or whole of the purchase price used in the purchase of the real properties subject of this case.R. the tools and equipment in favor of petitioner as his exclusive properties. CA affirmed in toto the decision of the RTC. 2000 praying for the distribution of the properties claimed to have been acquired during the subsistence of their marriage. invalid. a Filipina. During trial. he cannot invoke equity to support his claim for reimbursement. with the exception of their two (2) residential houses on Lots 1 and 2142. 42 ." Hence. FACTS: Petitioner. awarding all the parcels of land to respondent as her paraphernal properties. respondent sought the dismissal of the petition for dissolution. 2012 PERLAS-BERNABE. J. 5845 and 4 were registered in the name of respondent.ONE CANNOT SALVAGE ANY RIGHTS FROM AN UNCONSTITUTIONAL TRANSACTION KNOWINGLY ENTERED INTO. After several years. she and petitioner did not acquire any conjugal properties during their marriage. In defense. respondent averred that. petitioner filed a Petition for Dissolution of Conjugal Partnership dated December 14. hence. He also claimed that the joint affidavit they submitted before the Register of Deeds of Dumaguete City was contrary to Article 89 of the Family Code. WILLEM BEUMER vs. 2142. No.

creates no obligations and produces no legal effect at all. 43 . corporations. cannot be done directly. Save in cases of hereditary succession. Helmut Muller the Court had already denied a claim for reimbursement of the value of purchased parcels of Philippine land instituted by a foreigner Helmut Muller. even on the grounds of equity. The issue to be resolved is not of first impression. Undeniably. it leaves the parties where it finds them. no private lands shall be transferred or conveyed except to individuals. one cannot salvage any rights from an unconstitutional transaction knowingly entered into. the Court finds no reason why it should not apply the Muller ruling and accordingly. as petitioner has come before the Court with unclean hands. Evidently. Elena Buenaventura Muller. Petitioner’s statements regarding the real source of the funds used to purchase the subject parcels of land dilute the veracity of his claims: While admitting to have previously executed a joint affidavit that respondent’s personal funds were used to purchase Lot 1. It held that Helmut Muller cannot seek reimbursement on the ground of equity where it is clear that he willingly and knowingly bought the property despite the prohibition against foreign ownership of Philippine land enshrined under Section 7. grant reimbursement to petitioner given that he acquired no right whatsoever over the subject properties by virtue of its unconstitutional purchase.HELD: No. petitioner openly admitted that he "is well aware of the above-cited constitutional prohibition" and even asseverated that. Indeed. he is now precluded from seeking any equitable refuge. because of public policy. the Court cannot. Article XII of the 1987 Philippine Constitution which reads: Section 7. petitioner’s actuations showed his palpable intent to skirt the constitutional prohibition. he and respondent registered the subject properties in the latter’s name. petitioner cannot have the subject properties deeded to him or allow him to recover the money he had spent for the purchase thereof. In any event. against his former Filipina spouse. Thus. Surely. It is well-established that equity as a rule will follow the law and will not permit that to be done indirectly which. In In Re: Petition For Separation of Property-Elena Buenaventura Muller v. vests no rights. Corollary thereto. he likewise claimed that his personal disability funds were used to acquire the same. On the basis of such admission. a contract that violates the Constitution and the law is null and void. because of such prohibition. these inconsistencies show his untruthfulness. Clearly. The law will not aid either party to an illegal contract or agreement. deny petitioner’s claim for reimbursement. under Article 1412 of the Civil Code. or associations qualified to acquire or hold lands of the public domain.

G. The buyer also has the duty to ascertain the identity of the person with whom he is dealing with and the latter’s legal authority to convey the property. Lagrosa. Where there is nothing in the certificate of title to indicate any cloud or vice in the ownership of the property. ALBERTO A. Sarili and the Register of Deeds (RD) of Caloocan. SARILI vs. he discovered that a new certificate of title to the property was issued by the RD in the name of the Sps. SARILI. However. 2014 PERLAS-BERNABE. SARILI. Sarili are not innocent purchasers for value. Sarili by virtue of a falsified Deed of Absolute Sale between them and Sps. executed a Deed of Absolute Sale conveying the said property in their favor. 44 . No. or any encumbrance thereon. USA and during his vacation. NAMELY: ISABEL A. and. In such a case. LAGROSA. maintained that they are innocent purchasers for value. the purchaser is not required to explore further than what the Torrens Title upon its face indicates in quest for any hidden defects or inchoate right that may subsequently defeat his right thereto. PEDRO F. Sps. He claimed that he is a resident of California.THE HEIRS OF VICTORINO SARILI. represented in this act by his Attorney-in-Fact LOURDES LABIOS MOJICA.: FACTS: Lagrosa. alleging that he is the owner of a certain parcel of land in Caloocan City and he has been paying the real estate taxes therefor since his acquisition. ISSUE: 1. 2. January 15. No. represented by his attorney-in-fact Mojica via a special power of attorney (SPA). having purchased the subject property from Ramon B. Sarili are innocent purchasers for value.R. HIDALGO. all herein represented by CELSO A. MELENCIA S. the buyer is expected to examine not only the certificate of title but all factual circumstances necessary for him to determine if there are any flaws in the title of the transferor. MAXIMO. Rodriguez. 193517. a higher degree of prudence is required from one who buys from a person who is not the registered owner. although the land object of the transaction is registered. What are the rights and obligations of the parties with respect to the house? HELD: 1. on the other hand. Sps. who possessed and presented a SPA to sell/dispose of the same which did not have Ramon’s community tax certificate CTC number. Whether Sps. filed a complaint against Sps. IMELDA S. Sarili. J. The general rule is that every person dealing with registered land may safely rely on the correctness of the certificate of title issued therefor and the law will in no way oblige him to go beyond the certificate to determine the condition of the property. in such capacity.

452. 450. or he may compel the builder or planter to pay the price of the land. plants or sows in bad faith on the land of another. If no such special power of attorney is provided or there is one but there appears to be flaws in its notarial acknowledgment. and freedom from knowledge of circumstances which ought to put the holder upon inquiry. planter or sower. mere inspection of the face of such public document already constitutes sufficient inquiry. an honest belief. 546. . Necessary expenses shall be refunded to every possessor. however. i. the buyer must show that his investigation went beyond the document and into the circumstances of its execution. and that he be unaware that there exists in his title or mode of acquisition any flaw which invalidates it. 2. ART. should have known – from the very beginning that they were dealing with a person who possibly had no authority to sell the subject property considering 45 . 451. it is essential that a person asserts title to the land on which he builds. that he be a possessor in concept of owner. and it encompasses. among other things. and the first paragraph of Article 546 of the Civil Code which respectively read as follows: ART. The owner of the land on which anything has been built. It implies honesty of intention. they knew – or at the very least. The Court. planter or sower in bad faith is entitled to reimbursement for the necessary expenses of preservation of the land. planted or sown without right to indemnity. xxxx ART. 452. and the sower the proper rent. 449. in order to replace things in their former condition at the expense of the person who built. but only the possessor in good faith may retain the thing until he has been reimbursed therefor.e. Sarili. planted or sown in bad faith may demand the demolition of the work. or that the planting or sowing be removed. He who builds. finds a need to remand the case to the court a quo in order to determine the rights and obligations of the parties with respect to the house Sps.The strength of the buyer’s inquiry on the seller’s capacity or legal authority to sell depends on the proof of capacity of the seller. loses what is built. In the cases of the two preceding articles. the landowner is entitled to damages from the builder. the absence of malice and the absence of design to defraud or to seek an unconscionable advantage. planted or sowed. 451. The builder. ART. Good faith is an intangible and abstract quality with no technical meaning or statutory definition. mere inspection of the document will not do. (Emphases and underscoring supplied) xxxx To be deemed a builder in good faith. ART. If the proof of capacity consists of a special power of attorney duly notarized. As for Sps. Sarili had built on the subject property in bad faith in accordance with Article 449 in relation to Articles 450.

The case is.the palpable irregularity in the subject SPA’s acknowledgment. therefore. relying solely on said document and without any further investigation on Ramos’s capacity to sell Sps. Based on the foregoing it cannot be seriously doubted that Sps. Sarili were actually aware of a flaw or defect in their title or mode of acquisition and have consequently built the house on the subject property in bad faith under legal contemplation. remanded to the court a quo for the proper application of the above-cited Civil Code provisions. Sarili still chose to proceed with its purchase and even built a house thereon. 46 . Yet.

Adonis Escurel (adonis). J. SPOUSES ALMA ESCUREL-CRUCILLO and EMETRIO CRUCILLO GR No. 1979. P-17792 in her name. such action must be seasonably filed. averring that Paraguya’s complaint had already been barred by laches and/or prescription. by the name of Ramon Escanilla. Crucillo and the RD for the annulment of OCT No. there were no other documents of ownership presented before the Bureau of Lands in support of Escurel’s application for title. also testified in Paraguya’s favor. Paraguya testified as to how she came about owning the subject properties. as well as a titulo posesorio issued sometime in 1983 or 1985 in the name of Estabillo. else the same would be barred.: FACTS: On December 19. the late Angel Escurel. During trial. However. presenting a document entitled Recognition of Ownership and Possession dated December 1. a party may seek its annulment on the basis of fraud or misrepresentation. 1972 executed by her siblings. while Escurel was merely their administrator and hence. Crucillo filed their answer with motion to dismiss. The RTC granted Paraguya’s complaint. They further alleged. through her father. ISSUE: Whether the CA correctly dismissed Paraguya’s complaint for annulment of title. applied for a free patent over the subject properties. Citing Section 32 of PD 1529 (Property Registration Decree). 1990. 1976 executed by Escurel’s brother. PARAGUYA vs. among others. It pointed out that Paraguya was not real-party-interest since she has not proven her title over the subject properties. had no right over the same. Paraguya claimed that she is the lawful heir to the subject properties left by her paternal grandfather. that Escurel. stating that the titulo posesorio she held could no longer be used as evidence of ownership. P-17729 became indefeasible and incontrovertible after the lapse of one (1) year from its issuance on August 24. The CA reversed the RTC’s ruling and. 2013 PERLAS-BERNABE. the CA is correct. Paraguya filed before the RTC a Complaint against Sps. instead. resulting in the issuance of a Free Patent under OCT No. 200265 December 2. with prayer for receivership and damages. P-17729 and other related deeds. ordered the dismissal of Paraguya’s complaint. A representative of the CENRO. alleging that Escurel obtained the aforesaid title through fraud and deceit. thus barring Paraguya’s complaint. it held that OCT No. 47 .LAURA E. Sps. HELD: Yes. Verily. It is an established rule that a Torrens certificate of title is conclusive proof of ownership. stating that aside from an affidavit dated December 17.

mortgagee. subject.In this relation. however. viz: Sec. Review of decree of registration. deprived of land or of any estate or interest therein by such adjudication or confirmation of title obtained by actual fraud. Section 32 of PD 1529 provides that the period to contest a decree of registration shall be one (1) year from the date of its entry and that. the decree of registration and the certificate of title issued shall become inconvertible. The Court likewise took note that Paraguya’s complaint is likewise in the nature of an action for reconveyance because it also prayed for the trial court to order Sps. or other disability of any person adversely affected thereby. thus barring Paraguya’s action for annulment of title. Paraguya’s complaint remains dismissible on the same ground because the prescriptive period for actions for reconveyance is ten (10) years reckoned from the date of issuance of the certificate of title. Any person aggrieved by such decree of registration in any case may pursue his remedy by action for damages against the applicant or any other persons responsible for the fraud. Based on Section 32 of PD 1529. the CA’s dismissal of Paraguya’s complaint for annulment is in order since it was filed only on December 19. (Emphases and underscoring supplied) In this case. Innocent purchaser for value. it shall be deemed to include an innocent lessee. 1990. except when the owner is in possession of the property in which case the action for reconveyance becomes imprescriptible. vacating them altogether x x x. whose rights may be prejudiced. to file in the proper Court of First Instance a petition for reopening and review of the decree of registration not later than one year from and after the date of the entry of such decree of registration. or other encumbrancer for value. The decree of registration shall not be reopened or revised by the reason of absence. Upon the expiration of said period of one year. Despite this. said title had become inconvertible and indefeasible after the lapse of one (1) year from the date of its entry. the Torrens certificate of title issued thereon becomes incontrovertible and indefeasible. 48 . 1979. Whenever the phrase "innocent purchaser for value" or an equivalent phrase occurs in this Decree. after the lapse of the said period. 32. nor by any proceeding in any court by reversing judgments. or more than eleven (11) years from the title’s date of entry on August 24. Crucillo to "surrender ownership and possession of the properties in question to [Paraguya]. to the right of any person. including the government and the branches thereof. but in no case shall such petition be entertained by the court where an innocent purchaser for value has acquired the land or an interest therein. minority.

8027 null and void.R. The petitioner obtained a favorable decision from RTC of Naga City ordering the administratrix of the estate of Julian to surrender possession thereof enter the deed of sale and to issue the corresponding certificates of title after compliance with the requirements of the law. The new owner’s duplicate copy of TCT No. However. and (b) the RD-Naga shall issue a new certificate of title in lieu thereof. It further held that should the holder fail or refuse to comply with the court’s directive: (a) TCT No. During his lifetime. declared the same in their names. GEÑORGA vs. bearing annotations of the buyers’ adverse claims. prompting them to file a complaint against him. 224515. petitioner averred that she and the other buyers are in the process of completing all the requirements for the registration of the sales in their favor. 2013. it is well to point out that the subject land was an undivided co-owned property when Julian sold different portions thereof to various persons. they should be allowed to retain possession until the completion of the requirements therefor. Julian failed to surrender the owner’s duplicate copy of TCT which led the petitioner to file a Petition for the surrender for the said copy. In her Answer. enter the deeds of sale. Preliminarily. On April 22. However. The Supreme Court ruled in the affirmative. 2017 PERLAS-BERNABE. HEIRS OF JULIAN MELITON G. Considering that their possession of the subject owner’s duplicate title was by virtue of a court decision. and suffered damages as a consequence of its unlawful withholding. resulting in the issuance of a new one. Naga City. and have paid the estate taxes thereon. 2008. No. and to hire another geodetic engineer. In an Order dated October 2. J. and the buyers took possession and introduced improvements thereon. compelling them to secure the services of counsel to protect their interests. and for the legitimate purpose of registering the sales in their favor and the issuance of titles in their names. ISSUE: Does the petitioner have the obligation to surrender and deliver possession of the subject owner’s duplicate title to respondents? RULING: Yes. The said title was eventually submitted to the RD-Naga on September 13. a perusal of the pertinent deeds of absolute sale reveals that definite portions of the subject land were eventually sold. They had likewise caused the survey of the land but the first geodetic engineer they hired to conduct the same failed to deliver his services. Julian sold a portion of the subject land to Geñorga who took possession and introduced improvements on the portions respectively sold to them. July 3. and issue certificates of title in favor of the buyers. 1095-C located in Concepcion Pequeña.REMEDIOS V. The administratix failed to comply. 8027 (subject owner’s duplicate title) was given to petitioner in 2009. 2013. the RTC declared TCT No. 8027 shall be declared null and void. and paid the realty 49 .: FACTS: Julian and other respondents all surnamed Meliton are the registered owners of identified as Lot No. respondents filed a Complaint against petitioner alleging that they are entitled to the possession thereof as registered owners.

taxes thereon, all without any objection from respondents who never disputed the sales in favor of the
buyers. Consequently, the Court finds that there is, in this case, a partial factual partition or termination
of the co-ownership, which entitles the buyers to the segregation of their respective portions, and the
issuance of new certificates of title in their names upon compliance with the requirements of law.

Section 58. Procedure Where Conveyance Involves Portion of Land. - If a deed or conveyance is for a
part only of the land described in a certificate of title, the Register of Deeds shall not enter any transfer
certificate to the grantee until a plan of such land showing all the portions or lots into which
it has been subdivided and the corresponding technical descriptions shall have been
verified and approved pursuant to Section 50 of this Decree. Meanwhile, such deed may only be
annotated by way of memorandum upon the grantor’s certificate of title, original and
duplicate, said memorandum to serve as a notice to third persons of the fact that certain
unsegregated portion of the land described therein has been conveyed, and every certificate
with such memorandum shall be effectual for the purpose of showing the grantee’s title
to the portion conveyed to him, pending the actual issuance of the corresponding
certificate in his name.

Notably, from the time petitioner received possession of the subject owner’s duplicate title in 2009, a
considerable amount of time had passed until she submitted the same to the RD-Naga on September 13,
2013. But even up to the time she filed the instant petition before the Court on May 6, 2016, she failed to
show any sufficient justification for the continued failure of the concerned buyers to comply with the
requirements for the registration of their respective deeds of sale and the issuance of certificates of title
in their names to warrant a preferential right to the possession of the subject owner’s duplicate title as
against respondents who undisputedly own the bigger portion of the subject land.

Consequently, the Court finds no reversible error on the part of the CA in affirming the RTC Decision
directing petitioner or the RD-Naga to deliver or surrender the subject owner’s duplicate title to
respondents.

50

LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. ALFREDO HABABAG, SR.
G.R. Nos. 172352 & 172387-88; September 16, 2015
PERLAS-BERNABE, J.:

FACTS:
Alfredo Hababag, Sr. (Alfredo) was the owner of several parcels of agricultural land with an aggregate
area of 82.4927 hectares situated in Barangays Carriedo, Manapao, and Casili, in the Municipality of
Gubat, Sorsogon, and covered by TCT No. T-12107. The aforesaid landholdings were voluntarily offered
for sale (VOS) to the government under RA No. 6657, otherwise known as the "Comprehensive Agrarian
Reform Law of 1988," but only 69.3857 hectares thereof were acquired in 1990.

The Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) initially valued the subject lands at P1,237,850.00, but Alfredo
rejected the valuation. After summary administrative proceedings for the determination of the amount
of just compensation, the Office of the Provincial Agrarian Reform Adjudicator (PARAD) of the
Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Adjudication Board (DARAB) fixed the value of the subject lands
at P1,292,553.20. Dissatisfied, Alfredo filed a Complaint for the determination of the amount of just
compensation before the RTC.

As a matter of course, the RTC appointed two commissioners designated by each party to conduct an
evaluation and appraisal of the subject lands. Subsequently, the LBP-appointed Commissioner Corcuera,
who submitted his Commissioner's Report, fixing the amount of just compensation for the subject lands
at P2,358,385.48 based on DAR AO 6-92, as amended. On the other hand, the commissioner designated by
Alfredo, Commissioner Cuba of Banco Sorsogon, valued the lands at P5,420,600.00.

On December 20, 1999, the RTC rendered a Decision13 (December 20, 1999 Decision) fixing the amount
of just compensation of the subject lands at P5,653,940.00.

On appeal, CA set aside the RTC's valuation for failure to give due consideration to the factors
enumerated in Section 17 of RA 6657 and the formula under DAR AO 6-92, as amended. Moreover,
contrary to the limitation imposed by DAR AO 6-92 - i.e., that the computed value using the applicable
formula shall not exceed the landowner's offer to sell - the CA found that the amount as recomputed by
the RTC was way beyond the landowner's offer of P1,750,000.00 as stated in the Claims Valuation and
Processing Form. Consequently, it gave more credence to the report submitted by Commissioner
Corcuera which made use of the DAR formula derived from the factors enumerated under Section 17 of
RA 6657. The CA likewise considered the government's obligation to pay just compensation to be in the
nature of a forbearance of money and, as such, additionally imposed interests on the just compensation
award at 12% p.a., to be reckoned from the time of the taking or the filing of the complaint, whichever is
earlier.

ISSUE:
1. Whether no interest can legally accrue to the Heirs of Hababag since they have already paid the
provisional compensation; and
2. Whether CA erred in setting aside the just compensation fixed by the RTC.

HELD:

51

1. No. The imposition of interest is correct. In the present case, the just compensation for the subject
lands was finally fixed at P2,398,487.24, while the payments made by the LBP only amounted to
P1,237,850.00. Hence, there remained an unpaid balance of the "principal sum of the just
compensation," warranting the imposition of interest.

In the recent case of LBP v. Santos, the Court reemphasized that just compensation contemplates
of just and timely payment, and elucidated that "prompt payment" of just compensation
encompasses the payment in full of the just compensation to the landholders as finally
determined by the courts. Hence, the requirement of the law is not satisfied by the mere deposit
by the LBP with any accessible bank of the provisional compensation determined by it or by the
DAR, and its subsequent release to the landowner after compliance with the legal requirements
set forth bv RA 6657.

As to the reckoning point of the accrual of interests, in view of the LBP's alternative Motion for
Clarification, illumines that the interest shall be pegged at the rate of twelve percent (12%) per
annum (p.a.) on the unpaid balance, reckoned from the time of taking, or the time when the
landowner was deprived of the use and benefit of his property, such as when title is transferred
to the Republic of the Philippines, or emancipation patents are issued by the government, until
June 30, 2013, and thereafter, at six percent (6%) p.a. until full payment. However, while the LBP
averred that the landowner's title was cancelled in favor of the Republic, copies of the Republic's
title was not attached to the records of these consolidated cases. Accordingly, the Court hereby
directs the LBP to submit certified true copies of the Republic's title to the RTC upon remand of
these cases, and the latter to compute the correct amount of legal interests due to the Heirs of
Alfredo Hababag, Sr. reckoned from the date of the issuance of the said titles/s.

2. CA was correct in setting aside the valuation of the RTC. RTC’s valuation contradicts the
definition of "market value" as crafted by established jurisprudence on expropriation.

In determining the amount of just compensation for the subject lands, the RTC applied the
Income Productivity Approach which approximated the income for the remaining productive life
of the crops therein, without considering the fortuitous events and plant diseases, and with the
expectation that they would be compensated by developments which could be made by the
property owner.

The Court has repeatedly ruled that the constitutional limitation of just compensation is
considered to be the sum equivalent of the market value of the property, which is, in turn, defined
as the price fixed by the seller in open market in the usual and ordinary course of legal action
and competition, or the fair value of the property as between one who receives and one who
desires to sell it, fixed at the time of the actual taking by the government.

In this accord, therefore, the Court cannot sustain the formula used by the RTC which was "based
on the principle of anticipation which implies that the value of a property is dependent on the
potential net benefit that may be derived from its ownership." Clearly, this approach, which is
largely characterized by the element of futurity, is inconsistent with the idea of valuing the
expropriated property at the time of the taking.

52

AS AMENDED. APOLONIO KHO.402. the formula provided under DAR AO 5. J. AND KELVIN. REPRESENTED BY HIS HEIRS. On December 6. Negros Oriental. who fixed the just compensation for the land at P1. KRYPTON. as amended. HT-556. A portion of the said land (subject land) was placed under the Operation Land Transfer Program pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 2009. Meanwhile.RA 9700 SHALL NOT APPLY TO CLAIMS/CASES WHERE THE CLAIM FOLDERS WERE RECEIVED BY THE LBP PRIOR TO JULY 1. PRIOR TO ITS FURTHER AMENDMENT BY RA 9700. ISSUE: Whether or not the just compensation should be determined under DAR AO 1 of RA 9700.748.609. series of 2010. covered by Transfer Certificate of Title (TCT) No. PARAD issued an order fixing the value of the subject land at P109. citing. On appeal. DARAB affirmed the valuation of PARAD prompting the LBP to file a petition for the determination of just compensation before the RTC of Bais City. but Apolonio rejected the valuations. After a summary administrative proceeding for the determination of just compensation. TCT No. series of 2010. (PD) 27.46. series of 2010. NAMELY: PERLA LUZ.R. IN SUCH A SITUATION. CA affirmed the decision of the RTC. however. (AO) 1. WHERE THE JUST COMPENSATION DUE TO THE LANDOWNER HAS YET TO BE SETTLED.35. KOSELL. and the formula provided under DAR AO 1. on May 27. ALL SURNAMED KHO G. respondents filed a Motion for Re-evaluation asking the court to direct the LBP to conduct a revaluation of the subject land pursuant thereto. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. taking into consideration the valuation factors provided under Section 17 of RA 6657. 1993. RTC adopted in toto the valuation submitted by the Commissioners. and the corresponding Emancipation Patents were issued transferring ownership to the respondents-beneficiaries. JUST COMPENSATION SHALL BE DETERMINED IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 17 OF RA 6657. June 15. Subsequently. provided that the unsettled claims were filed prior to its (RA 9700) passage. JUST COMPENSATION SHOULD BE DETERMINED AND THE PROCESS CONCLUDED UNDER RA 6657. LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. AS AMENDED. which the RTC granted in an Order. Manjuyod. KYRIN. a just compensation of Php 49. the RTC appointed three (3) Commissioners.601. series of 1998 instead of DAR AO 1. No. in view of the passage of RA 9700 and the issuance of the implementing guidelines under DAR Administrative Order No. HT- 556 was partially cancelled covering the subject land. FACTS: Apolonio Kho was the registered owner of a parcel of land located at Lamogong. 2002. In the course thereof. 214901. Negros Oriental. 53 .2 was offered.

had clarified that the said law shall not apply to claims/cases where the claim folders were received by the LBP prior to July 1. DAR AO 2. or the time when the landowner was deprived of the use and benefit of his property. 54 . prior to its amendment by RA 9700. 3. However. Therefore. Just compensation must be valued at the time of taking…. the Court has gone over the records and found that the RTC and the CA neither considered the cut-off rule nor explained its reasons for deviating therefrom. as amended. just compensation shall be determined in accordance with Section 17 of RA 6657. 2009. the RTC should have computed just compensation using pertinent DAR regulations applying Section 17 of RA 6657 prior to its amendment by RA 9700 instead of adopting the new DAR issuance. as amended. In such a situation. absent any cogent justifications otherwise. the fair market value of an expropriated property is determined by its character and its price at the time of taking. to determine just compensation. just compensation should be determined and the process concluded under RA 6657. series of 2009. which is the implementing rules of RA 9700. Since the claim folders were received by the LBP prior to July 1. To this end. In this case. Case law dictates that when the acquisition process under PD 27 is still incomplete.HELD: No. which cannot be restricted by a formula dictated by the DAR85 when faced with situations that do not warrant its strict application. such as when the title is transferred in the name of the beneficiaries. the RTC and the CA were duty-bound to utilize the basic formula prescribed and laid down in pertinent DAR regulations existing prior to the passage of RA 9700. prior to its further amendment by RA 9700. The case is REMANDED to the RTC for reception of evidence on the issue of just compensation in accordance with the guidelines set in this Decision. Just compensation must be arrived at pursuant to the guidelines set forth in Section 17 of RA 6657. For purposes of determining just compensation. such as in this case where the just compensation due to the landowner has yet to be settled. the RTC is hereby directed to observe the following guidelines in the remand of the case: library1. This is without prejudice to judicial discretion in the evaluation of the factors for just compensation. as amended. 2. as it stands. 2009. Interest may be awarded as may be warranted by the circumstances of the case and based on prevailing jurisprudence.

who. be cancelled. ISSUE: Should the subject entries in the TCT considered adverse claims which ceased to be effective 30 days after registration and should. Later. Atty. therefore. Rosa. Peña entered into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Carmona Realty and Development Corporation (Carmona Realty) for the sale to Carmona Realty of contiguous parcels of land in Malitlit. Laguna (Malitlit Estate) which included the subject property. The MOA was annotated the TCT of the subject property.The RTC granted the petition and ordered the cancellation of the subject entries. In opposition. petitioner moved for reconsideration. Sta. delegated his authority to Peña. considering that Carmona Realty failed to make the escrow deposits stipulated therein which rendered the same automatically null and void. NO. 1529. in turn. petitioner contended that the MOA was duly notarized in Makati City where the Notary Public. therefore. Loreto Navarro.: FACTS: Respondent Mangahis is the registered owner of a parcel of land (subject property) in Barangay Malitlit. Sta. 1529? 55 .NO NEW CERTIFICATE SHALL BE ENTERED OR ISSUED PURSUANT TO ANY INSTRUMENT. It agreed with the trial court that the subject entries are akin to an annotation of adverse claim which is a measure designed to protect the interest of a person over a piece of real property and governed by Section 70 of PD 1529. pursuant to Section 70 of PD No. be cancelled. R. Rosa.00 within 30 days from the execution of the MOA. was commissioned. Carmona Realty agreed to deposit in escrow the total consideration of P1. Dissatisfied. MANGAHIS G. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. arguing that the subject entries do not constitute an adverse claim but a voluntary dealing which is governed by Section 54 of PD 1529.000. The RTC denied petitioner’s motion for reconsideration. J. CATALINO M.834. among others. He authorized a certain Zamora to sell the subject property. LOGARTA vs. The RTC also remarked that the MOA no longer has any force and effect. Laguna. Aggrieved. WHICH DOES NOT DIVEST THE OWNERSHIP OR TITLE FROM THE OWNER OR FROM THE TRANSFEREE OF THE REGISTERED OWNERS. The CA dismissed petitioner's appeal and affirmed the RTC ruling. respondent filed a petition to cancel the annotation (subject entries) on the ground that the MOA was a private document that had no legal effect because the Notary Public before whom it was acknowledged was not commissioned as such in the City of Manila for the year 2001. petitioner appealed to the CA. pursuant to Section 70 of PD No. ALICIA P.476. It found that the subject entries are adverse claims which ceased to be effective 30 days after registration and should. The release of the escrow deposits was subject to Peña's submission of a number of documents. 213568 July 5.

such that if the suspensive condition does not take place. Verily. Being a voluntary dealing affecting less than the ownership of the subject property. the MOA is essentially a dealing affecting less than the ownership of the subject property that is governed by Section 54 of PD 1529.HELD: No. and signed by him. the parties would stand as if the conditional obligation had never existed. The cancellation or extinguishment of such interests shall be registered in the same manner. ownership is transferred after the full payment of the installments of the purchase price or the fulfillment of the condition and the execution of a definite or absolute deed of sale. It is settled that in a deed of conditional sale. to wit: Section 54. it must be shown that there is no other provision in law for the registration of the claimant's alleged right in the property.which states that the cancellation of annotations involving interests less than ownership is within the power of the Register of Deeds . where registration of such interest or right is not otherwise provided for by the Property Registration Decree. Thus. A cursory perusal of the MOA shows that it is essentially a conditional sale where Carmona Realty's payment is subject to the submission of certain documents by Peña.should have been applied. A similar memorandum shall also be made on the owner's duplicate. respondent's authorized representative. An adverse claim is a type of involuntary dealing designed to protect the interest of a person over a piece of real property by apprising third persons that there is a controversy over the ownership of the land. before a notice of adverse claim is registered. Dealings less than ownership. Section 54 of PD 1529 . It seeks to preserve and protect the right of the adverse claimant during the pendency of the controversy. Given the foregoing. how registered. 56 . No new certificate shall be entered or issued pursuant to any instrument which does not divest the ownership or title from the owner or from the transferee of the registered owners. the RTC and the CA should have dismissed the petition for cancellation of the subject entries for being the wrong remedy. All interests in registered land less than ownership shall be registered by filing with the Register of Deeds the instrument which creates or transfers or claims such interests and by a brief memorandum thereof made by the Register of Deeds upon the certificate of title. An adverse claim serves as a notice to third persons that any transaction regarding the disputed land is subject to the outcome of the dispute. the efficacy or obligatory force of the vendor's obligation to transfer title in a conditional sale is subordinated to the happening of a future and uncertain event. Accordingly.

00 from respondent bank and executed a Real Estate Mortgage over the subject property to secure said loan. in the event of partition. SHE COULD NOT MORTGAGE OR OTHERWISE DISPOSE OF THE SAME IN ITS ENTIRETY WITHOUT THE CONSENT OF OTHER CO-OWNERS. the said mortgage is null and void. she could not yet assert or claim title to any specific portion thereof without an actual partition of the property being first done either by agreement or by judicial decree. Although Susana is a co-owner with her children with respect to Roque's share in the conjugal partnership. While she herself as co-owner had the right to mortgage or even sell her undivided interest in the subject property. the parents of petitioners. J. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. she could not mortgage or otherwise dispose of the same in its entirety without the consent of the other co-owners.R 215038 October 17. and won as the highest bidder. Consequently. ISSUE: Whether the REM entered into by Susana may is valid to the whole property? HELD: No. The mortgagors were unable to redeem the property and the bank sold it to Spouses Manuel. purportedly loaned from the respondent P35. 57 . SPS. The mortgagors defaulted on the payment of the loan.WHILE SHE HERSELF AS CO-OWNER HAD THE RIGHT TO MORTGAGE OR EVEN SELL HER UNDIVIDED INTEREST IN THE SUBJECT PROPERTY. as such. MAGSANO vs. the validity of the subject Real Estate Mortgage and the subsequent foreclosure proceedings therefor conducted in favor of respondent bank should be limited only to the portion which may be allotted to it. as Susana's successor in-interest. Consequently. thereby making it a co- owner with petitioners pending partition.000. PANGASINAN BANK G. They averred that Roque had already passed away before the execution of the Real Estate Mortgage. The bank extra-judicially foreclosed the property. petitioners filed a complaint for annulment of Real Estate Mortgage against respondents.: FACTS: Spouses Roque Magsano (Roque) and Susana Capelo (Susana).

no existing title in their files covering Lot 84. The purpose of the reconstitution of title is to have. 013775. as represented by the OSG.R. among others. ISSUE: Is the absence or non-existence of an OCT as declared by the Register of Deeds fatal to a petition for judicial reconstitution of a Torrens Certificate of Title? HELD: YES. having purchased the same from its previous owner. J. however. failed to establish the existence of the very Torrens Title which they sought to reconstitute. Its application is contingent on the very existence of a previously issued OCT which has been lost or destroyed. case law provides that "[t]he reconstitution of a certificate of title denotes restoration in the original form and condition of a lost or destroyed instrument attesting the title of a person to a piece of land. (b) respondents obtained two separate certifications from the Land Registration Authority (LRA). RA 58 . and (d) they were filing the petition for reconstitution on the basis of Decree No. presupposes that the property whose title is sought to be reconstituted has already been brought under the provisions of the Torrens System. the title reproduced in exactly the same way it has been when the loss or destruction occurred. petitioner Republic of the Philippines. (c) they secured another certification. No. RA 26 which governs the process by which a judicial reconstitution of Torrens Certificates of Title. 466085 was issued in relation to Lot 84. The Land Registration Examiner from the RD identified the certifications and testified that while the subject property had already been issued a decree. as attorneys-in-fact of Jover P. considering that respondents. filed a petition with the RTC for the reconstitution of the Original Certificate of Title (OCT) of a parcel of land (Lot 84). 466085. and that the same was presumed lost or destroyed as a consequence of the last world war. 466085 on file. RE-ISSUED. 2016 PERLAS-BERNABE. this time from the Register of Deeds (RD) declaring that the subject property had no existing OCT and that it was probably destroyed or dilapidated during the eruption of Hiboc-Hiboc Volcano or World War II. HOMER AND MA. 210540. prayed for the dismissal of the petition for insufficiency in form and substance. In opposition.: FACTS: Respondents. Dagondon. one stating that Decree No.ABSENCE OF CLEAR AND CONVINCING PROOF OF THE EXISTENCE OF AN OCT COVERING A LOT REGISTERED UNDER TORRENS TITLE IS FATAL TO A JUDICIAL RECONSTITUTION PETITION SINCE THERE IS NO TITLE WHICH COULD BE “RECONSTITUTED”. and the other stating that it did not have a copy of Decree No. SUSANA DAGONDON G. and consequently. Verily. OR RESTORED REPUBLIC vs. April 19. alleging the following: (a) Jover is the registered owner of Lot 84. after observing the procedures prescribed by law. registered it under his name for taxation purposes under Tax Declaration No. there is.

a copy of the same was not even presented as evidence before the trial court. practically means nothing and could not be considered as a sufficient and proper basis for reconstituting a lost or destroyed certificate of title. there is no title pertaining to Lot 84 which could be "reconstituted." re-issued. 466085 alone because as mentioned by petitioner. considering that an ambiguous LRA certification without describing the nature of the decree and the claimant in such case. Under the law. 466085 was issued to Lot 84 be given any probative weight. area and boundaries of the property are substantially the same as those contained in the lost or destroyed certificate of title. the following must be present for an order for reconstitution to issue: (a) that the certificate of title had been lost or destroyed. (c) that the petitioner is the registered owner of the property or had an interest therein. (d) that the certificate of title was in force at the time it was lost and destroyed. and (e) that the description. respondents miserably failed to adduce clear and convincing proof that an OCT covering Lot 84 had previously been issued by virtue of Decree No. (b) that the documents presented by petitioner are sufficient and proper to warrant reconstitution of the lost or destroyed certificate of title. Here. or restored." The failure of respondents to satisfactorily prove that Lot 84 had been registered under the Torrens System rendered judicial reconstitution under RA 26 inapplicable. 33 Neither could the certification 34 issued by the LRA stating that Decree No. 466085. Furthermore. Accordingly.26 presupposes that the property whose title is sought to be reconstituted has already been brought under the provisions of the Torrens System. respondents could not predicate their petition for reconstitution on the basis of Decree No. 59 . hence. its contents remain unknown.

Susi filed before the RTC a verified Petition for reconstitution of a TCT. She claimed that the original copy was destroyed by the fire that gutted the Registry of Deeds of Quezon City (RD-QC) on June 11. 2005. holding that both objections have been sufficiently overcome in the present case. 2017 PERLAS-BERNABE. her omission to allege matters required under Sections 11 and 12 of Republic Act No. considering that Susi was able to sufficiently establish that the certificate of title sought to be reconstituted was valid and existing under her name at the time it was destroyed. much less. The RTC ruled that the presentation of the owner's copy and the Certification from the RD-QC that the original was burned during the fire were sufficient to warrant the reconstitution sought. 1988. (RA) 26. ISSUE: Whether or not a petition for reconstitution that fails to comply with the technical requirements under Sections 11 and 2 of RA 26 should be granted. hence.R. 213209. 118999. CA: the CA found no reversible error. and directed the RD-QC to reconstitute the lost/destroyed original copy of TCT No.NON-COMPLIANCE WITH THE PRESCRIBED PROCEDURE AND REQUIREMENTS OF RA 26 DEPRIVES THE TRIAL COURT OF JURISDICTION OVER THE SUBJECT MATTER OR NATURE OF THE CASE AND RENDERS ALL ITS PROCEEDINGS NULL AND VOID REPUBLIC vs. It held that the subject petition was not barred by the dismissal by Branch 220 of the same RTC of a similar petition anchored on her failure to: (a) comply with the technical requirements of the law. Hence. which the RTC correctly found to have been fully established. SUSI G. the petition based on the owner's duplicate copy. No. and (b) convince the court that TCT sought to be reconstituted was valid and existing at the time it was destroyed. specifically. RTC: the RTC granted Susi's petition. grave abuse of discretion on the part of the RTC in granting the petition for reconstitution. for which it had previously issued Reports. The CA found the principle of res judicata to be inapplicable to this case since the dismissal of the prior similar petition was based on Susi's failure to comply with the technical requirements of the law. HELD: 60 . J.: FACTS: On September 27. January 16. the latter was not precluded from filing another petition to prove the necessary allegations for the reconstitution of the subject title. Land Registration Authority (LRA) filed with the RTC a Manifestation stating that respondent filed similar petitions for reconstitution covering the subject land before Branches 88 and 220 of the same RTC.

Jurisprudence is replete with cases underscoring the indispensability of actual and personal notice of the date of hearing of the reconstitution petition to actual owners and possessors of the land involved in order to vest the trial court with jurisdiction thereon. The non-compliance with the prescribed procedure and requirements deprives the trial court of jurisdiction over the subject matter or nature of the case and. RA 26 provides two procedures and sets of requirements in the reconstitution of lost or destroyed certificates of title depending on the source of the petition for reconstitution. as early as January 16. Trial courts hearing reconstitution petitions under RA 26 are duty- bound to take into account the LRA's report. and all proceedings held thereon are null and void. all its proceedings are rendered null and void. in light of the LRA's report of the subsistence of other certificates of title over the subject land. However. in observance of diligence and prudence. petitioner must observe the above procedures and requirements prescribed by the law. In view of the failure to comply with the requirements of Sections 12 and 13 of RA 26. he is deprived of his day in court and the order of reconstitution is null and void. after observing the procedures prescribed by law. did not acquire jurisdiction over the case. expressing serious doubts on the authenticity of Susi's duplicate title.No. on the service of notices of hearing on the registered owners and/or actual possessors of the land subject of the reconstitution case. assume. the reproduction of the lost or destroyed Torrens certificate in the same form and in exactly the same way it was at the time of the loss or destruction. Thus. The reconstitution petition and the published and posted notice of hearing. and acquire jurisdiction or authority over the petition and grant the reconstitution prayed for. it behooved the RTC to notify the registered land owners of the reconstitution proceedings. particularly. The judicial reconstitution of a Torrens title under RA 26 means the restoration in the original form and condition of a lost or destroyed Torrens certificate attesting the title of a person to registered land. 61 . the LRA had already called the court's attention the previous reconstitution petition before Branch 88. The rationale underlying this rule concerns the nature of the conferment in the trial court of the authority to undertake reconstitution proceedings. the RTC. The present reconstitution petition was anchored on a purported owner's duplicate copy of TCT which is a source for reconstitution of title under Section 3 (a) of RA 26. and informing it of the existence of other titles over the subject land. If no notice of the date of hearing of a reconstitution case is served on a possessor or one having interest in the property involved. In all cases where the authority to proceed is conferred by a statute and the manner of obtaining jurisdiction is mandatory. Before the court can properly act. or the proceedings will be utterly void. 2006. The purpose of the reconstitution is to enable. the same must be strictly complied with. consequently.

Section 15 of which provides when reconstitution of a title should be allowed: the following requisites must be complied with 62 . docketed as LRC Case No. through his father and attomey-infact.41566. upon her presentment of the aforesaid documents to the Register of Deeds. as evidenced by a Deed of Absolute Sale executed by the parties. Sometime in November 2009. HELD: The governing law for judicial reconstitution of title is Republic Act No. Thus. CA denied the petition holding that the Spouses Cruz complied with the jurisdictional requirements of publication and notice of hearing.: FACTS: Petitioner alleged that respondent Spouses Cruz. CRUZ AND CRISTINA P. 220940 March 20. Cruz (Lamberto). is the registered owner a of land covered by Katibayan ng Orihinal na Titulo Big. Sebastian then paid the corresponding capital gains tax. SEBASTIAN vs. According to Sebastian. Sebastian requested the execution of such document to Lamberto. but failed to comply. 2017 PERLAS-BERNABE. P-41566.THE FACT OF LOSS OR DESTRUCTION OF THE OWNER'S DUPLICATE CERTIFICATE OF TITLE IS CRUCIAL IN CLOTHING THE RTC WITH JURISDICTION OVER THE JUDICIAL RECONSTITUTION PROCEEDINGS JOY VANESSA M. P-41566 on August 2. SPOUSES NELSON C. (OCT No. Nelson. ISSUE: Whether or not RTC has jurisdiction to issue a new owner's duplicate copy of title in favor of Spouses Cruz despite the existence of the sale of the land and the surrender of the certificate of title by the Spouses Cruz in favor of Sebastian. among others.However. which he registered with the RD-Pangasinan. 2011 in order to protect her rights over the subject land.R. the RTC promulgated a Decision granting Spouses Cruz's petition and. CRUZ and THE REGISTER OF DEEDS FOR THE PROVINCE OF PANGASINAN G. the latter directed her to secure a Special Power of Attorney executed by Spouses Cruz authorizing Lamberto to sell the subject land to her. Sebastian was constrained to cause the annotation of an adverse claim in OCT No. consequently. (RA) 26. 2014. Lamberto P. Sebastian filed the aforesaid petition for annulment of judgment before the CA on the ground of lack of jurisdiction. 2013 attesting to the loss of owner's duplicate copy of OCT No. ordered the issuance of a new owner's duplicate copy of OCT No. Lamberto then surrendered to her the possession of the subject land and his General Power of Attomey. it was only on July 14. J.) P-415666 (subject land). Upon Sebastian's payment of the purchase price. 2014 upon her inquiry with RD-Pangasinan about the status of the aforesaid title when she discovered that: (a) Nelson executed an Affidavit of Loss dated September 23. No. In view of the foregoing incidents. 421. and (c) on March 27. to cause the transfer of title to her name. who promised to do so. (b) the Spouses Cruz filed before the RTC a petition for the issuance of a second owner's copy of OCT No. Accordingly. P. P-41566 in their names. then sold the subject lot in favor of Sebastian.

for an order for reconstitution to be issued: (a) that the certificate of title had been lost or destroyed. the reconstitution of a certificate of title denotes restoration in the original form and condition of a lost or destroyed instrument attesting the title of a person to a piece of land. (d) that the certificate of title was in force at the time it was lost and destroyed. Sebastian's petition for annulment of judgment before the CA clearly alleged that. Should such allegation be proven following the conduct of further proceedings. CA . (c) that the petitioner is the registered owner of the property or had an interest therein. In Spouses Paulino v. as the same was surrendered to her by Lamberto. then there would be no other conclusion than that the RTC had no jurisdiction over the subject matter. Indubitably. but is in fact in the possession of another person. In this case. Verily. 421. area and boundaries of the property are substantially the same as those contained in the lost or destroyed certificate of title. (b) that the documents presented by petitioner are sufficient and proper to warrant reconstitution of the lost or destroyed certificate of title. the fact of loss or destruction of the owner's duplicate certificate of title is crucial in clothing the RTC with jurisdiction over the judicial reconstitution proceedings.the Court reiterated the rule that when the owner's duplicate certificate of title was not actually lost or destroyed. 63 . and (e) that the description. the owner's duplicate copy of OCT No. the reconstituted title is void because the court that rendered the order of reconstitution had no jurisdiction over the subject matter of the case. and was in her possession all along. P-41566 was not really lost. contrary to the claim of Spouses Cruz in LRC Case No. Nelson's father and attorney-in-fact.

It also added that Donton failed to prove that Stier is an American citizen since the only evidence presented as regards thsis matter was a Certification from the Bureau of Immigration certifiying that one Duane Otto Stier. and that because Donton failed to pay his obligation. 2001. DUANE STIER and EMILY MAGGAY G. respondents. 2001 and returned only on August 30. WHETHER INDIVIDUALS OR CORPORATIONS. Stier argued that he extended a loan to Donton secured by a mortgage over the subject property and its improvements. Donton filed a complaint for annulment of title and reconveyance of property with damages against the respondents and the Register of Deeds of Quezon City. took possession and control of the subject property. which clearly states that Stier is an American citizen. visited the Philipppines on September 2. was a forgery. While he was in the United States.” The RTC dismissed the complaint on the ground of insufficiency of evidence. by virtue of which he purportedly sold the subject property to respondents. through their legal representative. vs. the Deed of Absolute Sale and the title issued in respondents’ favor must be annulled insofar as Stier is concerned. 2001 and left on October 6. therefore. In their Answer with Counterclaim. ARE DISQUALIFIED FROM ACQUIRING LANDS OF THE PUBLIC DOMAIN AS WELL AS PRIVATE LANDS THE HEIRS OF PETER DONTON. FELIPE G. 2001. Stier and Maggay. He denied signing or executing the document in favor of respondents. 216491. The CA affirmed the ruling of the RTC. Quezon City. More than the Certification issued by the BOI. Donton alleged that the signature on the Deed of Absolute Sale dated July 16. both of which mention that Stier is an 64 .R. August 23. the records contain other documents validating the information such as the respondents’ Answer with Counterclaim and the attachments to their Manifestation. Because of the respondents’ refusal to vacate the property. enjoys the presumption of regularity. 2001. HELD: YES. as well as the management of the business operating thereat. Donton further alleged that Stier is an American citizen and a non- resident alien who is. The RTC reasoned that the same was not sufficient to prove Stier’s citizenship since it merely proved the alleged travel of the latter. No. an American citizen. having departed from the Philippines on June 27. 2017 PERLAS-BERNABE. they initially executed a “unilateral contract of sale. J. FACTS: Donton is the owner of a parcel of land located in Cubao. he was allegedly still in the United States. being a public and notarial document. finding that the Deed of Absolute Sale. July 16. ISSUE: Whether or not the petition for annulment of title and reconveyance of property should be granted on the ground Stier is an American citizen even if the petitioner failed to discharge the burden of proof.ALIENS. 2001. CAPULONG. considering that on the date of its purported execution. not allowed by law to own any real property in the Philippines.

It produces no legal effect at all. Nevertheless. the original owner. to wit: Section 7. the sale of the subject property to Stier is in violation of the Constitution. hence. the other vendee. the other undivided one-half share. Stier is barred from recovering any amount that he paid for the subject property. have been disqualified from acquiring lands of the public domain as well as private lands. even if petitioners failed to prove that Donton's signature on the Deed of Absolute Sale was a forgery. shall revert to Donton. which pertained to Stier. Section 7. Furthermore. In light of the foregoing. the sale to her remains valid but only up to the extent of her undivided one-half share therein. Save in cases of hereditary succession. no private lands shall be transferred or conveyed except to individuals. had no capacity to purchase the subject property. Thus. considering that petitioners failed to prove their allegation that Maggay. A contract that violates the Constitution and the law is null and void and vests no rights and creates no obligations. Meanwhile. may be transferred or conveyed only to individuals or entities qualified to acquire or hold private lands or lands of the public domain. whether individuals or corporations. for being the subject of a transaction void ab initio. the action being proscribed by the Constitution. which include private lands. Article XII of the Constitution enshrines the rule against foreigners acquiring real property in the Philippines.American citizen and a non-resident alien. or associations qualified to acquire or hold lands of the public domain. lands of the public domain. null and void ab initio. 65 . corporations. These statements are admissions against interest and therefore binding upon him. Aliens.