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CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)

Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan

CASE DIGEST IN CIVIL LAW REVIEW I

Prof. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan

SUBMITTED BY: IV - LLB-4402

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan

SURNAME 1 ABRINA 2 AQUILINO 3 BACARRA 4 BAET 5 BANOCAG 6 BARIA 7 BERMUDO 8 BUESER, AM 9 BUESER, JM 10 CARLOS 11 DAVID 12 DAYA 13 DE GUZMAN 14 DISTURA 15 GARCIA 16 GENUINO 17 GEREMIA 18 GONZAGA 19 GONZALES 20 GUILLERMO 21 GUTIERREZ 22 LAYSON 23 MALABANAN 24 MARTINEZ 25 MENDOZA 26 MOLINA 27 NEPOMUCENO 28 PATAUEG 29 PIO 30 RADOVAN 31 RODRIGUEZ 32 RONQUILLO 33 SACRAMENTO 34 SITJAR 35 TELOG 36 TOLENTINO 37 TORRES 38 YAMAT

CASES ASSIGNED for DIGEST TANADA V. TUVERA to VAN DORN V. ROMILLO QUITA V. CA to LLORENTE V. CA VELAYO V. SHELL CO. PHILS to RCPI V. CA MERALCO V. CA to REYES V. LIM NDC V. MADRIGAL to SPS. PAHANG V. METROBANK ABACAN V. NUI to REPUBLIC V. CA SILVERIO V. REPUBLIC to REPUBLIC V. ORBECIDO ATENZA V. BRILLANTES to CHING MING TSOI V. CA REPUBLIC V. MOLINA to FERRARIS V. FERRARIS ZAMORA V. ZAMORA to CALISTERIO V. CALISTERIO REPUBLIC V. NOLASCO to JIMENEZ V. REPUBLIC OCAMPO V. FLORENCIANO to PELAYO V. LAURON ILUSORIO V. ILUSORIO to ESTONINA V. CA AYALA INVESTMENT V. CA to RELUCIO V. LOPEZ HOMEOWNERS SAVINGS BANK V. DAILO to SAGUID V. REY HONTIVEROS V. RTC, BR.25 ILOILO to PATRICIO V. DARIO III ANDAL V. MACARAIG to CABATANIA V. REGODOS SAYSON V. CA to AGUSTIN V. PROLLAMANTE IN RE CHANGE OF NAME OF JULIAN LIN to TAMARGO V. CA LAHOM V. SIBULO to SANTOS V. CA PEREZ V. CA to ATOK V. IAC REPUBLIC V. GUZMAN to EVADEL REALTY V. SORIANO NAZARENO V. CA to HEIRS OF ROMAN SORIANO V. CA SERASPI V. CA to DBP V. CA VILLANUEVA V. CA to REPUBLIC V. SILIM QUILALA V. ALCANTARA to DIONISIO V. ORTIZ ROMAN CATHOLIC V. CA to CITY OF ANGELES REPUBLIC V. CA to DKC HOLDINGS V. CA ARUEGO V. CA to BUGNAO V. UBAG BAGTAS V. PAGUIO to NERA V. RIMANDI CANEDA V. CA to AZNAR V. GARCIA UNSON V. ABELLA to CANIZA V. CA PECSON V. CORONEL to ROSALES V. ROSALES FRANCISCO V. ALFONSO to DE PAPA V. CAMACHO LLORENTE V. RODRIGUEZ to DIAZ V. IAC DELA PUERTA V. CA to SARITA V. CANDIA ABLLENA DE BACAYO V. BORROMEO to SANCHEZ V. CA NAZARENO V. CA to BICARME V. CA

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page I. II. III. IV. V. VI. VII. VIII. IX. X. XI. XII. XIII. XIV. XV. XVI. XVII. XVIII. PRELIMINARY TITLE--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------4 HUMAN RELATIONS--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 15 PREJUDICIAL QUESTION-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 29 CIVIL PERSONALITY--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 35 CITIZENSHIP-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 36 MARRIAGE---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 39 VOID MARRIAGES------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 51 PSYCHOLOGICAL INCAPACITY----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 53 VOIDABLE MARRIAGES---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 73 LEGAL SEPARATION-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 77 RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS BETWEEN HUSBAND AND WIFE---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 82 PROPERTY RELATIONS---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 85 THE FAMILY AS AN INSTITUTION--------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 108 PATERNITY AND FILIATIOIN---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 116 ADOPTION----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 136 PARENTAL AUTHORITY----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 143 CASES IN PROPERTY-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 152 CASES IN SUCCESSION----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 193

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
1) TAADA VS. TUVERA G.R. No. L-63915. April 24, 1985 Doctrine: The publication of presidential issuances "of a public nature" or "of general applicability" is a requirement of due process. It is a rule of law that before a person may be bound by law, he must first be officially and specifically informed of its contents. Facts: The petitioners seek a writ of mandamus to compel respondent public officials to publish, and/or cause the publication in the Official Gazette various presidential decrees, letters of instructions, general orders, proclamations, executive orders, letters of implementation and administrative orders. The respondents contend that the publication in the Official Gazette is not a requirement for the effectivity of the laws where the laws provide for their own effectivity dates. It is thus submitted that since the presidential issuances in question contain special provisions as to the date that they are to take effect, publication in the Official Gazette is not indispensable for their effectivity based on Article 2 of the Civil Code. The interpretation of the respondent is in accord with the Courts construction of said article. In a long line of decisions, the Court has ruled that publication in the Official Gazette is necessary in cases where the legislation itself does not provide for an effectivity date - for the date of publication is material in determining its date of effectivity which is the 15 th day following its publication - but not when the law itself provides for the date when it goes into effect. Issue: Whether there is still a need for publication of the presidential decrees with specified dates of effectivity. Held: Yes, there is still a need for publication. Article 2 does not preclude the requirement of publication in the Officila Gazette, even if the law itself provides for the date of its effectivity. Section 1 of CA 638 provides that: Section 1. There shall be published in the Official Gazette [1] all important legislative acts and resolutions of a public nature of the, Congress of the Philippines; [2] all executive and administrative orders and proclamations, except such as have no general applicability; [3] decisions or abstracts of decisions of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals as may be deemed by said courts of sufficient importance to be so published; [4] such documents or classes of documents as may be required so to be published by law; and [5] such documents or classes of documents as the President of the Philippines shall determine from time to time to have general applicability and legal effect, or which he may authorize so to be published. The clear object of the above-quoted provision is to give the general public adequate notice of the various laws which are to regulate their actions and conduct as citizens. Without such notice and publication, there would be no basis for the application of the maxim "ignorantia legis non excusat." It would be the height of injustice to punish or otherwise burden a citizen for the transgression of a law of which he had no notice whatsoever, not even a constructive one. The very first clause of Section I of Commonwealth Act 638 reads: "There shall be published in the Official Gazette ... ." The word "shall" used therein imposes upon respondent officials an imperative duty. That duty must be enforced if the Constitutional right of the people to be informed on matters of public concern is to be given substance and reality. The law itself makes a list of what should be published in the Official Gazette. Such listing, to our mind, leaves respondents with no discretion whatsoever as to what must be included or excluded from such publication. The publication of all presidential issuances "of a public nature" or "of general applicability" is mandated by law. Obviously, presidential decrees that provide for fines, forfeitures or penalties for their violation or otherwise impose a burden or the people, such as tax and revenue measures, fall within this category. Other presidential issuances which apply only to particular persons or class of persons such as administrative and executive orders need not be published on the assumption that they have been circularized to all concerned. It is needless to add that the publication of presidential issuances "of a public nature" or "of general applicability" is a requirement of due process. It is a rule of law that before a person may be bound by law, he must first be officially and specifically informed of its contents. The Court therefore declares that presidential issuances of general application, which have not been published, shall have no force and effect.

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
become effective after fifteen days from its publication in the Official Gazette but "one year after such publication." The general rule did not apply because it was "otherwise provided. " It is not correct to say that under the disputed clause publication may be dispensed with altogether. The reason is that such omission would offend due process insofar as it would deny the public knowledge of the laws that are supposed to govern the legislature could validly provide that a law be effective immediately upon its approval notwithstanding the lack of publication (or after an unreasonably short period after publication), it is not unlikely that persons not aware of it would be prejudiced as a result and they would be so not because of a failure to comply with but simply because they did not know of its existence. It must be noted at this point the conclusive presumption that every person knows the law, which of course presupposes that the law has been published if the presumption is to have any legal justification at all. It is no less important to remember that Section 6 of the Bill of Rights recognizes "the right of the people to information on matters of public concern," and this certainly applies to, among others, and indeed especially, the legislative enactments of the government. 2. The term "laws" should refer to all laws and not only to those of general application, for strictly speaking all laws relate to the people in general albeit there are some that do not apply to them directly. Thus, all statutes, including those of local application and private laws, shall be published as a condition for their effectivity, which shall begin fifteen days after publication unless a different effectivity date is fixed by the legislature. Covered by this rule are: a. Presidential decrees and executive orders promulgated by the President in the exercise of legislative powers whenever the same are validly delegated by the legislature or, at present, directly conferred by the Constitution; b. Administrative rules and regulations, if their purpose is to enforce or implement existing law pursuant also to a valid delegation; c. Charter of a city;

2) TAADA VS. TUVERA G.R. No. L-63915 December 29, 1986 Facts: 1. In the first Tanada case the petitioners were invoking due process in demanding the disclosure of a number of presidential decrees which they claimed had not been published as required by law, which is Art. 2 of the Civil Code. The government argued that while publication was necessary as a rule, it was not so when it was "otherwise provided," as when the decrees themselves declared that they were to become effective immediately upon their approval. In the decision of the case on April 24, 1985, the Court affirmed the necessity for the publication of some of these decrees, declaring in the dispositive portion as follows: WHEREFORE, the Court hereby orders respondents to publish in the Official Gazette all unpublished presidential issuances which are of general application, and unless so published, they shall have no binding force and effect. 2. Petitioners are now moving for a reconsideration/clarification of the aforementioned decision. Issue: 1. Whether or not the clause UNLESS IT IS OTHERWISE PROVIDED solely refers to the fifteen-day period and not to the requirement of publication. 2. Whether or not the word LAWS refer to all laws or only to those of general application. 3. Where should publication of said laws be made? Held: 1. The clause "unless it is otherwise provided" refers to the date of effectivity and not to the requirement of publication itself, which cannot in any event be omitted. This clause does not mean that the legislature may make the law effective immediately upon approval, or on any other date, without its previous publication. Publication is indispensable in every case, but the legislature may in its discretion provide that the usual fifteen-day period shall be shortened or extended. An example, as pointed out by the present Chief Justice in his separate concurrence in the original decision, is the Civil Code which did not

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
d. Circulars issued by the Monetary Board if meant to fill in the details of the Central Bank Act which that body is supposed to enforce. However, no publication is required for the following: a. Interpretative regulations and those merely internal in nature, that is, regulating only the personnel of the administrative agency and not the public; b. Letters of instructions issued by administrative superiors concerning the rules or guidelines to be followed by their subordinates in the performance of their duties; c. Municipal ordinances, which are covered by the Local Government Code. 3. Publication must be in full or it is no publication at all since its purpose is to inform the public of the contents of the laws, and publication is to be made in the Official Gazette as decided upon in the first Tanada case, however, the Court made this pronouncement: There is much to be said of the view that the publication need not be made in the Official Gazette, considering its erratic releases and limited readership. Undoubtedly, newspapers of general circulation could better perform the function of communicating, the laws to the people as such periodicals are more easily available, have a wider readership, and come out regularly. The trouble, though, is that this kind of publication is not the one required or authorized by existing law. As far as we know, no amendment has been made of Article 2 of the Civil Code. The Solicitor General has not pointed to such a law, and we have no information that it exists. If it does, it obviously has not yet been published. At any rate, the Court is not called upon to rule upon the wisdom of a law or to repeal or modify it if we find it impractical. That is not our function. That function belongs to the legislature. Our task is merely to interpret and apply the law as conceived and approved by the political departments of the government in accordance with the prescribed procedure. Consequently, we have no choice but to pronounce that under Article 2 of the Civil Code, the publication of laws must be made in the Official Gazett and not elsewhere, as a requirement for their effectivity after fifteen days from such publication or after a different period provided by the legislature. 3) PHILSA INTERNATIONAL PLACEMENT and SERVICES CORPORATION v THE HON. SECRETARY OF LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT, VIVENCIO DE MESA, RODRIGO MIKIN and CEDRIC LEYSON G.R. No. 103144. April 4, 2001 Doctrine: All statutes, including those of local application and private laws, shall be published as a condition for their effectivity, which shall begin fifteen days after publication unless a different effectivity date is fixed by the legislature. Covered by this rule are presidential decrees and executive orders promulgated by the President in the exercise of legislative powers whenever the same are validly delegated by the legislature or, at present, directly conferred by the Constitution: Administrative rules and regulations must also be published if their purpose is to enforce or implement existing law pursuant to a valid delegation. Interpretative regulations and those merely internal in nature, that is, regulating only the personnel of the administrative agency and the public, need not be published. Neither is publication required of the socalled letter of instructions issued by the administrative superiors concerning the rules or guidelines to be followed by their subordinates in the performance of their duties Facts: Petitioner Philsa International Placement and Services Corporation is a domestic corporation engaged in the recruitment of workers for overseas employment. Sometime in January 1985, private respondents, who were recruited by petitioner for employment in Saudi Arabia, were required to pay placement fees in the amount of P5,000.00 for private respondent Rodrigo L. Mikin and P6,500.00 each for private respondents Vivencio A. de Mesa and Cedric P. Leyson. After the execution of their respective work contracts, private respondents left for Saudi Arabia on January 29, 1985. They then began work for AlHejailan Consultants A/E, the foreign principal of petitioner. While in Saudi Arabia, private respondents were allegedly made to sign a second contract on February 4, 1985 which changed some of the provisions of their original contract resulting in the reduction of some of their benefits and privileges. On

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
April 1, 1985, their foreign employer allegedly forced them to sign a third contract which increased their work hours from 48 hours to 60 hours a week without any corresponding increase in their basic monthly salary. When they refused to sign this third contract, the services of private respondents were terminated by Al-Hejailan and they were repatriated to the Philippines. Upon their arrival in the Philippines, private respondents demanded from petitioner Philsa the return of their placement fees and for the payment of their salaries for the unexpired portion of their contract. When petitioner refused, they filed a case before the POEA against petitioner Philsa and its foreign principal, Al-Hejailan. Several hearings were conducted before the POEA Hearing Officer. On the aspects of the case involving money claims arising from the employer-employee relations and illegal dismissal, the POEA rendered a decision dated August 31, 1988, ordering respondent PHILSA INTERNATIONAL PLACEMENT AND SERVICE CORPORATION to pay complainants, jointly and severally with its principal Al Hejailan. Almost simultaneous with the promulgation of August 31, 1988 decision of the POEA on private respondents money claim, POEA issued separate Order dated August 29, 1988 resolving the recruitment violation aspect of private respondents complaint. In this order, POEA found petitioner liable for three (3) counts of illegal exaction, two (2) counts of contract substitution and one count of withholding or unlawful deduction from salaries of workers. From the said Order, petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration which was subsequently denied. After the denial of its motion for reconsideration, petitioner appealed to the Secretary of Labor and Employment. However, public respondent Secretary of Labor and Employment affirmed en toto the assailed Order. Petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration but this was likewise denied. Hence, the instant Petition for Certiorari. Petitioner insists, however, that it cannot be held liable for illegal exaction as POEA Memorandum Circular No. 11, Series of 1983, which enumerated the allowable fees which may be collected from applicants, is void for lack of publication. Issue: Whether or not POEA Memorandum Circular No. 11 Series of 1983 is void for lack of publication? Held: Yes, the said memorandum circular is void for lack of publication. In Taada vs. Tuvera, the Court held, as follows: "We hold therefore that all statutes, including those of local application and private laws, shall be published as a condition for their effectivity, which shall begin fifteen days after publication unless a different effectivity date is fixed by the legislature. Covered by this rule are presidential decrees and executive orders promulgated by the President in the exercise of legislative powers whenever the same are validly delegated by the legislature or, at present, directly conferred by the Constitution: Administrative rules and regulations must also be published if their purpose is to enforce or implement existing law pursuant to a valid delegation. Interpretative regulations and those merely internal in nature, that is, regulating only the personnel of the administrative agency and the public, need not be published. Neither is publication required of the socalled letter of instructions issued by the administrative superiors concerning the rules or guidelines to be followed by their subordinates in the performance of their duties." POEA Memorandum Circular No. 2, Series of 1983 must likewise be declared ineffective as the same was never published or filed with the National Administrative Register. POEA Memorandum Order No. 2, Series of 1983 provides for the applicable schedule of placement and documentation fees for private employment agencies or authority holders. Under the said Order, the maximum amount which may be collected from prospective Filipino overseas workers is P2,500.00. The said circular was apparently issued in compliance with the provisions of Article 32 of the Labor Code. It is thus clear that the administrative circular under consideration is one of those issuances which should be published for its effectivity, since its purpose is to enforce and implement an existing law pursuant to a valid delegation. Considering that POEA Administrative Circular No. 2, Series of 1983 has not as yet been published or filed with the National Administrative Register, the same is ineffective and may not be enforced. The Office of the Solicitor General argues however that the imposition of administrative sanctions on petitioner was based not on the questioned administrative circular but on Article 32 and Article 34 (a) 28 of the Labor Code. The argument is not meritorious. The said articles of the Labor Code were never cited, much less discussed, in the body of the questioned Orders of the POEA and Secretary of Labor and Employment. In fact, the said Orders were consistent in mentioning that petitioner's violation of Administrative Circular No. 2, Series of 1983 was the basis for the imposition of administrative sanctions

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
against petitioner. Furthermore, even assuming that petitioner was held liable under the said provisions of the Labor Code, Articles 32 and 34 (a) of the Labor Code presupposes the promulgation of a valid schedule of fees by the Department of Labor and Employment. Considering that, as, previously discussed, Administrative Circular No. 2, Series of 1983 embodying such a schedule of fees never took effect, there is thus no basis for the imposition of the administrative sanctions against petitioner The Office of the Solicitor General likewise argues that the questioned administrative circular is not among those requiring publication contemplated by Taada vs. Tuvera as it is addressed only to a specific group of persons and not to the general public. Again, there is no merit in this argument. The fact that the said circular is addressed only to a specified group, namely private employment agencies or authority holders, does not take it away from the ambit of our ruling in Taada vs. Tuvera. In the case of Phil. Association of Service Exporters vs. Torres, the administrative circulars questioned therein were addressed to an even smaller group, namely Philippine and Hong Kong agencies engaged in the recruitment of workers for Hong Kong, and still the Court ruled therein that, for lack of proper publication, the said circulars may not be enforced or implemented. Our pronouncement in Taada vs. Tuvera is clear and categorical. Administrative rules and regulations must be published if their purpose is to enforce or implement existing law pursuant to a valid delegation. The only exceptions are interpretative regulations, those merely internal in nature, or those so-called letters of instructions issued by administrative superiors concerning the rules and guidelines to be followed by their subordinates in the performance of their duties. Administrative Circular No. 2, Series of 1983 has not been shown to fall under any of these exceptions. 4) Unciano Paramedical College c CA G.R. No. 100335, April 7, 1993 Doctrine: Settled is the rule that when a doctrine of this Court is overruled and a different view is adopted, the new doctrine is applied prospectively, and should not apply to parties who relied on the old doctrine and acted on the faith thereof Thus, the writ of preliminary mandatory injunction was issued by the trial court with grave abuse of discretion. Facts: On April 16, 1990, private respondents Elena Villegas and Ted Magallanes, thru their mothers, Victoria Villegas and Jacinta Magallanes, respectively, filed before the Regional Trial Court, National Capital Judicial Region, Branch 21, a petition for injunction and damages with prayer for a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction against petitioners Unciano Paramedical College, Inc., Mirando C. Unciano, Sr., Dominador Santos, Editha Mora, Dr. Evelyn Moral and Laureana Vitug, they alleged therein that: 1. On July 1989, the above-named students initiated a petition proposing to the school authorities the organization of a student council in the school. They solicited support of their petition from the studentry by asking the students to endorse the same with their signatures. They were able to get at least 180 signatures. 2. On August 18, 1989, the students were summoned to the Office of Dr. Moral and were admonished not to proceed with the proposal because, according to her, the school does not allow and had never allowed such an organization. 3. On October 28, 1989, in compliance with an announcement to see the Dean of Nursing, the above-named students met with Dean Vitug and Dr. Moral who informed them that they would be barred from enrollment for the second semester because the school does not allow their students to put up a student council. Dr. Moral advised them to get their Honorable Dismissal. 4. On November 6, 1989, the students again approached Dr. Moral who informed them that they were no longer allowed to enroll because they are allegedly members of the National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP) and the League of Filipino Students (LFS), officers of the student organization they organized, and, moreover 'drug addicts.' The students asked for proof of these accusations but were not given any. 5. On 29 November 1989, the students were informed that the President had unilaterally refused to allow them to enroll and it was up to their parents to request or appeal to the school officials to change their decision. Mrs. Victoria Villegas and Mrs. Jacinta Magallanes wrote to the school officials to request that their children be allowed to enroll . Dr. Moral informed them that the Board of Trustees will have to decide on these requests. 6. On 11 December 1989, the students were informed that the Board of Trustees had refused to grant the parents' request."

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
The trial court issued a temporary restraining order effective May 17, 1990, enjoining petitioner school from not enrolling private respondents in its College of Nursing and setting the hearing for the issuance of the writ of preliminary injunction on June 4, 1990. Petitioners filed an opposition but the RTC still ordered the school to allow the students to enroll. The Court of Appeals upheld the ruling of the RTC and based its the ruling in the recent case of Ariel Non, et al. vs. Hon. Sancho Dames II, , May 20, 1990, the Supreme Court, abandoned and overruled its decision in Alcuaz and declared thus: The contract between the school and the student is not an ordinary contract. It is imbued with public interest, considering the high priority given by the Constitution to education and the grant to the State of supervisory and regulatory powers over all educational institutions. When a student registers in a school, it is understood that he is enrolling for the entire school year 'Every student has the right to enroll in any school, college or university upon meeting its specific requirement and reasonable regulation: Provided, that except in the case of academic delinquency and violation of disciplinary regulation, the student is presumed to be qualified for enrollment for the entire period he is expected to his complete his course without prejudice to his right to transfer.' Hence the instant appeal. Issue: If the Ariel Non Doctrine should be applied retroactively to govern and invalidate the legal effects of the incidents that took place prior to its adoption and which incidents were proper and valid under the ALCUAZ doctrine prevailing at the time said incident took place. Held: No, the Non doctrine should not be applied to the instant case. Under the then prevailing Alcuaz doctrine which was promulgated on May 2, 1988, the contract between them and private respondents was validly terminated upon the end of the first semester of school year 1989-1990. Although said doctrine was later abandoned in Non, et al. v. Dames II, et al., supra, this case was promulgated much later, or on May 20, 1990, when the termination of the contract between them had long become fait accompli. Settled is the rule that when a doctrine of this Court is overruled and a different view is adopted, the new doctrine is applied prospectively, and should not apply to parties who relied on the old doctrine and acted on the faith thereof. Thus, the writ of preliminary mandatory injunction was issued by the trial court with grave abuse of discretion. The ruling in the Non case should not be given a retroactive effect to cases that arose before its promulgation on May 20, 1990, as in this case, which was filed on April 16, 1990. If it were otherwise, it would result in oppression to petitioners and other schools similarly situated who relied on the ruling in the Alcuaz case, promulgated on May 2, 1988, which recognized the termination of contract theory. The contract between the parties was validly terminated upon the end of the first semester of school year 1989-1990, or in October, 1989. This is the status quo. The trial court gravely abused its discretion in issuing the writ of preliminary mandatory injunction which ordered petitioners to allow private respondents "to enroll for the first semester of school year 1990-1190." 16 Guided by the Capitol case, certainly, this writ will not restore the status quo but will go a step backward, then restore the condition preceding the status quo. Private respondents do not possess any clear legal right to re-enroll, corollarily, petitioners are not obliged legally to re-admit them. 5) Cui v Arellano University G.R. No. L-15127; May 30, 1961 Facts: Plaintiff enrolled in the College of Law of the defendant university from the school year 19481949. He finished his law studies in the defendant university up to and including the first semester of the fourth year. During all the time he was studying law in the defendant university, he was awarded scholarship grants, for scholastic merit, so that his semestral tuition fees were returned to him after the end of each semester and when his scholarship grants were awarded to him. The whole amount of tuition fees paid by plaintiff to defendant and refunded to him by the latter from the first semester up to and including the first semester of his last year in the college of law or the fourth year, is in total of P1,033.87. However, before defendant awarded to plaintiff the scholarship grants as above stated, he was made to sign the following contract covenant and agreement which provides that in consideration of the scholarship granted to him by the University, he waives his right to transfer to another school without having refunded to the University (defendant) the equivalent of his scholarship cash.

CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
For the last semester of his law studies, plaintiff enrolled in the college of law of the Abad Santos University and graduated therefrom. After graduating in law he applied to take the bar examination. Plaintiff then petitioned the defendant university to issue to him the needed transcripts. However, the defendant refused until after he had paid back the P1,033 87 which defendant refunded to him as above stated. As he could not take the bar examination without those transcripts, plaintiff paid to defendant the said sum under protest. This is the sum which plaintiff seeks to recover from defendant in this case. Issue: Whether or not the said provision of the contract is valid. Held: No, the stipulation in question is contrary to public policy and, hence, null and void. The practice of awarding scholarships to attract students and keep them in school is not a good custom nor has it received some kind of social and practical confirmation except in some private institutions as in Arellano University. The University of the Philippines which implements Section 5 of Article XIV of the Constitution with reference to the giving of free scholarships to gifted children, does not require scholars to reimburse the corresponding value of the scholarships if they transfer to other schools. The same goes for leading colleges and universities of the United States after which our educational practices or policies are patterned. In these institutions scholarships are granted not to attract and to keep brilliant students in school for their propaganda mine but to reward merit or help gifted students in whom society has an established interest or a first lien. 6) People vs Jabinal 55 SCRA 607 Facts: On September 5, 1964, the accused was found to be in possession of a revolver without the requisite license or permit. He claimed to be entitled to exoneration because, although he had no license or permit, he had appointments as Secret Agent from the Provincial Governor of Batangas and as Confidential Agent from the PC Provincial Commander, and the said appointments expressly carried with them the authority to possess and carry the said firearm. The accused further contended that in view of his appointments, he was entitled to acquittal on the basis of the Supreme Courts decisions in People vs. Macarandang and in People vs. Lucero. The trial court found the accused criminally liable for illegal possession of firearm and ammunition on the ground that the rulings in Macarandang* and in Lucero* were reversed and abandoned in People vs. Mapa**. The case was elevated to the Supreme Court. Issue: Whether or not the appellant should be acquitted on the basis of the Supreme Courts rulings in the cases of Macarandang and of Lucero. Held: The appellant was acquitted. Decisions of the Supreme Court, although in themselves not laws, are nevertheless evidence of what the law means; this is the reason why Article 8 of the New Civil Code provides that, Judicial decisions applying and interpreting the laws or the constitution shall form part of the legal system. The interpretation upon a law by the Supreme Court constitutes in a way a part of the law as of the date the law was originally passed, since the courts construction merely establishes the contemporaneous legislative intent that the law thus construed intends to effectuate. The settled rule supported by numerous authorities is a restatement of the legal maxim legis interpretatio legis vim obtinetthe interpretation placed upon the written law by a competent court has the force of law. The doctrine laid down in Lucero and in Macarandang was part of the jurisprudence, hence, of the law of the land, at the time appellant was found in possession of the firearm and when he was arraigned by the trial court. It is true that the doctrine was overruled in Mapa case in 1967,but when a doctrine of the Supreme Court is overruled and a different view is adopted, the new doctrine should be applied prospectively, and should not apply to parties who had relied on the old doctrine and acted on the faith thereof. Considering that the appellant possessed a firearm pursuant to the prevailing doctrine enunciated in Macarandang and in Lucero, under which no criminal liability would attach to his possession of said firearm, the appellant should be absolved. The appellant may not be punished for an act which at the time it was done was held not to be punishable. *The accused were acquitted for through their appointment as confidential/secret agent they were deemed to be peace officers. Peace officers had the privilege of carrying firearms without license. **Mapa was convicted although he was a secret/confidential agent. The court ruled that thelaw

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
did not explicitly provide that secret/confidential agents are among those who are exempted from acquiring a license to carry a firearm. abroad, which may be recognized in the Philippines, provided they are valid according to their national law. In this case, the divorce in Nevada released private respondent from the marriage from the standards of American law, under which divorce dissolves the marriage. Thus, pursuant to his national law, private respondent is no longer the husband of petitioner. He would have no standing to sue in the case below as petitioner's husband entitled to exercise control over conjugal assets. As he is bound by the Decision of his own country's Court, which validly exercised jurisdiction over him, and whose decision he does not repudiate, he is estopped by his own representation before said Court from asserting his right over the alleged conjugal property. To maintain, as private respondent does, that, under our laws, petitioner has to be considered still married to private respondent and still subject to a wife's obligations under Article 109, et. seq. of the Civil Code cannot be just. Petitioner should not be obliged to live together with, observe respect and fidelity, and render support to private respondent. The latter should not continue to be one of her heirs with possible rights to conjugal property. She should not be discriminated against in her own country if the ends of justice are to be served. 8) QUITA vs. CA G.R. No. 124862, December 22, 1998 Facts: Fe Quita and Arturo Padlan, both Filipinos, were married in the Philippines on May 18, 1941, but not blessed with any children. Fe sued Arturo for divorce in San Francisco, USA, submitting as evidence their agreement to live separately from each other and a settlement of their conjugal properties. A decree of divorce was granted on July 23, 1954. After 3 weeks, Fe married Felix Tupaz in San Francisco, but eventually ended into a divorce. For the third time, she married again in USA. April 16, 1972, Arturo died leaving no will. August 31, 1972, Lino Javier Inciong filed with RTC QC a petition for issuance of letters of administration concerning the estate of Arturo in favor of the Philippine Trust Company. Blandina Dandan, surviving spouse of Arturo, and their children opposed the petition. Later, Ruperto Padlan, claiming to be the sole surviving brother of deceased Arturo, intervened. October, 7, 1987, Fe moved fot the immediate declaration of heirs of deceased Arturo and distribution of his estate.

7) Van Dorn vs. Romillio 139 SCRA 139 Doctrine: It is true that owing to the nationality principle embodied in Article 15 of the Civil Code, 5 only Philippine nationals are covered by the policy against absolute divorces the same being considered contrary to our concept of public police and morality. However, aliens may obtain divorces abroad, which may be recognized in the Philippines, provided they are valid according to their national law Facts: Petitioner is a citizen of the Philippines while private respondent is a citizen of the United States. They were married in Hongkong in 1972. After the marriage, they established their residence in the Philippines. They begot two children born on April 4, 1973 and December 18, 1975, respectively. The parties were divorced in Nevada, United States, in 1982 and petitioner has re-married also in Nevada, this time to Theodore Van Dorn. In 1983, private respondent filed suit against petitioner alleging the petitioners business in Ermita (the Galeon Shop) is a conjugal property of the parties and prayed that private respondent be declared with right to manage said property. Petitioner moved to dismiss the petition on the ground that the cause of action is barred by previous judgement in the divorce proceedings before the Nevada Court. The Court below denied the motion to dismiss since the property involved is located in the Philippines so that the Divorce Decree had no bearing in this case. The denial is now the subject of this certiorari proceeding. Issue: Whether the foreign divorce on the parties has affected the alleged conjugal property in the Philippines? Held: It is true that owing to the nationality principle embodied in Article 15 of the Civil Code, only Philippine nationals are covered by the policy against absolute divorces the same being considered contrary to our concept of public police and morality. However, aliens may obtain divorces

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The trial court disregarded the divorce between Fe and Arturo, and expressed the view that their marriage subsisted until the death of Arturo in 1972. Issues: Whether or not Blandinas marriage to Arturo was void ab initio. Whether or not Fe can be declared the primary beneficiary of Arturos estate. Held: No, Blandinas marriage to Arturo was valid, thus, Fe cannot be declared a beneficiary to Arturos estate. At the time Fe obtained a divorce decree against Arturo in San Francisco, she was already an alien and no longer a Filipino citizen. Hence, the divorce decree is valid in the Philippines, since it is considered valid in Fes national law, which is the USA law. 9) CATALAN vs. BRAGANZA G.R. No. 167109, February 6, 2007 Facts: Felicitas Catalan married Orando on June 4, 1950. They migrated to USA and became naturalized citizens thereof. On April 1988, they divorced. June 16, 1988, Orlando married Merope in Pangasinan. Later, Felicitas filed a petition for declaration of nullity of marriage with RTC Dagupan against Orlando and Merope, contending that Merope has a prior subsisting marriage with Eusebio Bristol. RTC ruled in favor of Felicitas. Issue: Whether Felicitas has the personality to file a petition for the declaration of nullity of marriage of Orlando on the ground of bigamy. Held: There is no specific provision as to who can file a petition to declare the nullity of marriage under the New Civil Code, which is the law governing at the time of marriage between Orlando and Merope, nor even in the Family Code. however, only a party who can demonstrate proper interest can file the same. A petition to declare the nullity of marriage must be prosecuted or defended in the name of the real party in interest and must be based on a cause of action. In the instant case, Felicitas personality to file the petition to declare the nullity of marriage cannot be ascertained due to the absence of the divorce decree and the foreign law allowing it. Thus, the case is remanded to trial court for reception of additional evidence necessary.

10) SAN LUIS vs. SAN LUIS G.R. No. 133743, February 6, 2007 Facts: The case involves the settlement of Felicisimos estate. During his lifetime, he contracted 3 marriages. First was with Virginia, who predeceased him. On May 1, 1968, Felicisimo married Merry Lee Corwin, but ended to a divorce, when Merry filed a divorce complaint in Hawaii and was granted. On June 20, 1974, Felicisimo married Felicidad. Felicisimo died on December 18, 1992. Felicidad sought the dissolution of their conjugal partnership assets and settlement of Felicisimos estate. She filed with RTC Makati a petition for letters of administration. Rodolfo, one of the children of Felicisimo by his first marriage, filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds of improper venue and failure to state a cause of action, alleging that the petition should have been filed in the Province of Laguna where Felicisimos place of residence prior to his death, and that Felicidad has no legal personality to file the petition because she was only a mistress. Issue: Whether a Filipino who is divorced by his alien spouse abroad may validly remarry under the Civil Code, considering that Felicidads marriage to Felicisimo was solemnized on June 20, 1974, or before the effectivity of the Family Code. Held: The divorce decree allegedly obtained by Merry which absolutely allowed Felicisimo to remarry, would have vested Felicidad with the legal personality to file the present petition as the surviving spouse of Felicisimo. But there is insufficient evidence to prove the validity of the divorce decree obtained by Merry, as well as the marriage of Felicidad and Felicisimo under the laws of USA. Presentation solely of the divorce decree is insufficient, proof of its authenticity and due execution must also be presented. Under Sections 24 and 25 of Rule 132, a writing or document may be proven as a public or official record of a foreign country by either (1) an official publication or (2) a copy thereof attested by the officer having legal custody of the document. If the record is not kept in the Philippines, such copy must be (a) accompanied

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by a certificate issued by the proper diplomatic or consular officer in the Philippine foreign service stationed in the foreign country in which the record is kept and (b) authenticated by the seal of his office. With regard to Felicidads marriage to Felicisimo solemnized in California USA, she only submitted photocopies of the Marriated Certificate and the annotated text of the Family Law Act of California. The Court, however, cannot take judicial notice of foreign laws as they must be alleged and proved. Therefore, this case was remanded to the trial court for further reception of evidence on the divorce decree obtained by Merry and the marriage of Felicidad and Felicisimo. 11) AZNAR VS. GARCIA 7 SCRA 95 Facts: CIF of Davao directed the executor to reimburse Maria Lucy Christensen the amount of P3,600 paid by her to Helen Christensen Garcia as her legacy, and declaring Maria Lucy Christensen entitled to the residue of the property to be enjoyed during her lifetime, and in case of death without issue, of said residue to be payable to Mrs. Carrie Louise C Borton, etc, in accordance with the provisions of the will of the testator Edward E. Christensen. Helen Christensen Garcia filed an opposition, as it deprives her of her legitime as an acknowledged natural child, she having been declared by the Court as one. The court ruled that Edward E. Christensen was a citizen of the United States of America and of the State of California at the time of his death and he was domiciled in the Philippines. Issue: Whether or not the Philippine Law shall govern the administration of the will of Edward Christensen. Held: The Court ruled that the Philippine Law shall govern the testamentary disposition of Edward Christensen. Article 16 of the Civil Code provides that the national law shall govern intestate and testamentary successions. National law refers to the private law of the state of which the decedent is a citizen, in the case at bar, the private law of the State of California. Article 94 of the Civil Code of State of California refers back the case, when a decedent is not domiciled in California, to the law of his domicile, the Philippines in the case at bar. 12) BELLIS vs. BELLIS 20 SCRA 358 Facts: Amos Bellis was a citizen of the State of Texas, United States. He had 5 legitimate children with his first wife, 3 legitimate children with hi second wife, and had 3 illegitimate children. On August 5, 1952, Amos Bellis executed a will in the Philippines. July 8, 1958, Amos died. On January 17, 1964, Maria Cristina Bellis and Miriam Palma Bellis filed their respective oppositions to the project of partition on the ground that they were deprived of their legitimes as illegitimate children of Amos Bellis, and therefore, compulsory heirs of the deceased. Under the Laws of Texas, there are no forced heirs of legitimes. Issue: Which law must apply Texas Law or Philippine Law? Held: The decedents national law, which is the Texas law, governs the order of succession, the amount of successional rights, the intrinsic validity of the provisions of the will and the capacity to succeed. It is not disputed that the decedent was both a national of Texas and a domicile thereof at the time of his death. A provision in a foreigners will to the effect that his properties shall be distributed in accordance with Philippine Law and not with his national law cannot be ignored in regard to those matters that Article 16 of the Civil Code states said national law should govern. Since the intrinsic validity of the provision of the will and the amount of successional rights are to be determined under Texas Law, the Philippine law on legitimes cannot be applied to the testacy of Amos Bellis. 13) TESTATE ESTATE OF BOHANAN BOHANAN G.R. No. L-12105, January 30, 1960 vs.

Facts: On April 24, 1950, admitting to probate C. O. Bohanans last will and testament, executed on April 23, 1944 in Manila, CFI found that the testator was born in Nebraska and a citizen of California, but temporarily stayed in the Philippines for a long period of time. At the time of his death, he was a citizen of the United States and of the State of Nevada, and his will was executed in accordance

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with the laws of the state of Nevada. Out of his total estate of P211,639.33 in cash, the testator gave his grandson P90,819.67 and of all shares of stock of several mining companies and to his brother and sister the same amount. To his children, he gave a legacy of only P6,000 each. Magdalena, his wife, and her 2 children opposed the validity of the testamentary provisions contending that the will deprived them of their legitime. Magdalena alleged that the trial court erred in recognizing the Reno divorce secured by the testator from his Filipino wife Magdalena, and that divorce should be declared a nullity in this jurisdiction. According to the laws of the State of Nevada, no right to share in the inheritance in favor of a divorced wife. The divorce was granted to the testator on May 20, 1922. Issue: Whether Philippine laws or the law of the State of Nevada should apply. Held: The testator died in 1944, thus, the old Civil Code governs. The old Civil Code provides that successional rights to personal property are to be earned by the national law of the person whose succession is in question. The foreign law, specifically Section 9905, compiled Newada Laws, was introduced as evidence. That law can be taken judicial notice by the Court, without proof of such law having been offered at the hearing of the project of partition. According to Article 10 of the Old Civil Code, the validity of testamentary dispositions are governed by the national law of the testator, and it has been decided without dispute that the national law of the testator is that of the State of Nevada, which allows a testator to dispose of all his property according to his will. 14) LLORENTE vs. COURT OF APPEALS G. R. No. 124371, November 23, 2000 Facts: Lorenzo (enlisted serviceman of the US Navy from March 10, 1927 Septermber 30, 1957) and Paula were married on February 22, 1937. Before the outbreak of the Pacific War, Lorenzo went back to the US while Paula stayed in the conjugal home at Camarines Sur. On November 30, 1943, Lorenzo was naturalized as an American citizen. He visited the Philippines and discovered that his wife, Paula was pregnant and was living in with his brother Ceferino. On November 1, 1951, Lorenzo filed for divorce with the Superior Court of the State of California and was granted. On January 16, 1958, Lorenzo married Alicia in Manila and begot 3 children. On March 13, 1981, Lorenzo executed a notarized Last Will and Testament. On December 14, 1983, Lorenzo filed a petition with the RTC for the probate and allowance of his last will and testament, moving that Alicia be appointed as Special Administratrix of his estate, but was denied because Lorenzo was still alive. On January 24, 1984, trial court admitted the will to probate. On June 11, 1985, Lorenzo died. On September 4, 1985, Paula filed with the same court a petition for letters of administration over Lorenzos estate in her favor, contending that she was Lorenzos surviving spouse and that the testamentary provisions in Lorenzos will encroached on her legitime and share in the conjugal property. Issue: Whether or not Paula is entitled to inherit from Lorenzos estate. Held: Foreign law should apply. Lorenzos divorce decree with Paula is recognized as valid. Foreign laws must be alleged and proved. Our courts do not take judicial notice of them. The fact is Lorenzo became an American citizen long before and at the time of 1) his divorce from Paula; 2) marriage to Alicia; 3) execution of his will; and 4) death. Issues arising from these incidents are governed by foreign law. Both RTC and CA decisions in hastily applying Philippine law are erroneous. Heres why: 1) Aliens may obtain divorces abroad provided they are valid according to their national law. In this case, LORENZOs divorce from PAULA was valid and recognized in this jurisdiction as a matter of comity. 2) LORENZOs will is valid. Article 17 The forms and solemnities of contracts, wills, and other public instruments shall be governed by the laws of the country in which they are executed. In this case, whether the will was executed in accordance with the formalities required is answered by referring to Philippine law. In fact, the will was duly probated. The trial court should not that Congress did not intend to extend the same succession (system of legitime) to foreign nationals.

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II. HUMAN RELATIONS 15) ALFREDO M. VELAYO vs. SHELL G.R. No. L-7817, October 31, 1956. FACTS CALI, a domestic airline corporation, met with its creditors to inform them that the corporation was on the verge of insolvency and had to stop operations. To ensure payment of their claims against CALI, the creditors agreed that it would be advantageous not to present suits against CALI but to strive for a fair pro-rata division of its assets, although CALI announced that in case of non-agreement of the creditors on a pro-rata division of the assets, it would file insolvency proceedings. Right after the meeting, defendant Shell Philippines, one of CALIs creditors who was present in the meeting and who agreed to the pro-rata division, assigned its credit to its sister company, Shell USA. Shell USA then filed with a California court an action for collection of the assigned credit and applied for a writ of attachment against CALIs Douglas C-54 plane which was in California. Prior to the meeting with creditors, CALI had already offered the plane to Shell Philippine but the offer was rejected. Velayo, as assignee of the other creditors of CALI, filed this action for damages against defendant Shell Philippines. He claims that that fraudulent assignment of Shell Philippines credit to Shall USA prejudiced the other creditors and was contrary to the agreed pro-rata division of assets. ISSUE: WON Shell Philippines, taking advantage of its knowledge of the existence of CALI's airplane in the US, acted in bad faith in assigning its credit to its sister company effectively defeating the agreed pro-rata division of assets among the creditors of CALI. HELD: PROVISIONS ON HUMAN RELATIONS INTENDED AS CATCH-ALL PROVISIONS FOR ANY WRONG FOR WHICH NO SPECIFIC REMEDY IS PROVIDED FOR BY LAW. Defendant schemed and effected the transfer to its sister corporation in the United States, where CALI's plane C- 54 was. By that swift and unsuspected operation efficaciously disposed of said insolvent's property depriving the latter and the Assignee that was latter appointed, of the opportunity to recover said plane. Chapter 2 of the PRELIMINARY TITLE of the Civil Code, dealing on Human Relations, provides the following: "Art 19. Any person must, in the exercise of his rights and in the performances of his duties, act with justice, give everyone his due and observe honesty and good faith". It maybe said that this article only contains a mere declaration of principles and while such statement may be is essentially correct, yet We find that such declaration is implemented by Article 21 and sequence of the same Chapter which prescribe the following: "Art. 21. Any person who wilfully causes loss or injury to another in a manner that is contrary to morals, good customs or public policy shall compensate the latter for the damage". Another rule is expressed in Article 24 which compels the return of a thing acquired 'without just or legal grounds'. This provision embodies the doctrine that no person should unjustly enrich himself at the expense of another, which has been one of the mainstays of every legal system for centuries. It is most needful that this ancient principle be clearly and specifically consecrated in the Civil Code to the end that in cases not foreseen by the lawmaker, no one may unjustly benefit himself to the prejudice of another. Now, if Article 23 of the Civil Code goes as far as to provide that: "Even if an act or event causing damage to another's property was not due to the fault or negligence of the defendant, the latter shall be liable for indemnity if through the act or event he was benefited." with much more reason the Defendant should be liable for indemnity for acts it committed in bad faith and with betrayal of confidence. Arnel P. Bacarra 16) Albenson Enterprises Corporation vs. CA G.R. No. 88694, January 11, 1993 FACTS: Petitioner Albenson Enterprises delivered to Guaranteed Industries, located at 3267 V. Mapa St. Sta.Mesa, Manila, mild steel plates. As part payment, Albenson was given a check drawn against the account of E.L. Woodworks. However, when the check was presented for payment, it was

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dishonored because of lack of funds. This led Albenson to trace the origin. This led them to a certain Eugenio Baltao. They made afterwards an extrajudicial demand to private respondent Baltao. But he denied that he signed on the check because Guaranteed Industries was already inexistent. This led Albenson to file a criminal complaint for violation of BP 22. However, it was later found out that his namesake, Eugenio Baltao III, his son, was the one who manages E.L. Woodworks located on the ground floor of the Baltao Building. Nevertheless, Assistant Fiscal Sumaway filed the information. But Provincial Fiscal Castro instructed the trial fiscal to dismiss the information. Because of the unjust filing of the criminal complaint, Baltao filed a complaint for damages against Albenson Enterprises. The trial court ruled in favor of Baltao. The Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the lower court. ISSUE: Whether or not the filing of the criminal complaint by Albenson Enterprises constituted an abuse of right? RULING: The Supreme Court ruled in the negative. Under Article 19 of the Civil Code, the following are the requisites for abuse of right: (1) There is a legal right or duty; (2) which is exercised in bad faith; (3) for the sole intent of prejudicing or injuring another. Article 20 speaks of the general sanction for all other provisions of law which do not especially provide for their own sanction. Article 21 deals with acts contra bonus mores, and has the following elements: 1) There is an act which is legal; 2) but which is contrary to morals, good custom, public order, or public policy; 3) and it is done with intent to injure. A closer look at the said articles and it can be revealed that Articles 19 and 21 share a common element: that the act is intentional. Article 20, however, does not distinguish. It is dependent on the circumstances of the case. By applying these to the case at hand, it cannot be said that Albenson Enterprises was abusing the rights of Baltao. The trial court and the appellate court made a mistake of lumping the three articles and used them as bases for the award of damages in a civil complaint filed against the petitioners. Albenson was prompted by its natural instinct and right to file a criminal complaint because it was not able to collect the payment of the mild steel plates it had delivered. It had every right to exhaust all legal remedies to collect its unpaid credit. Arnel P. Bacarra 17) GLOBE MACKAY CABLE AND RADIO CORPORATION V. COURT OF APPEALS G.R No. 81262, August 25, 1983 FACTS: Private respondent Tobias was employed by Globe Mackay in a dual capacity as a purchasing agent and administrative assistant. Petitioner discovered fictitious purchases and other fraudulent transactions for which it lost several thousands of pesos. Tobias was implicated as the number one suspect. Police investigations were conducted as a result of said anomaly. The police reports exculpated Tobias from any participation in the offense. Unsatisfied, petitioner still hired private investigators. Pending the investigation of the private detectives, petitioner filed a complaint for estafa against Tobias. Later, Tobias was terminated. Hence, he filed an action for illegal dismissal. While his case awaits resolution, he sought employment with RETELCO. However, petitioner, without being asked by RETELCO, wrote a letter to the latter stating that Tobias was dismissed due to dishonesty. Thus, Tobias filed a civil case for damages anchored on alleged unlawful, malicious and abusive acts of petitioner. ISSUE: Whether or not petitioner should indemnify private respondent for damages. HELD: Article 19 of the Civil Code known to contain what is commonly referred to as the principle of abuse of rights, sets certain standards which must be observed not only in the exercise of one's rights but also in the performance of one's duties. These standards are the following: to act with justice; to give everyone his due; and to observe honesty and good faith. Violation of Article 19 can result to right to damages pursuant to Article 21 or Article 22. This article was adopted to remedy the countless gaps in the statutes, which leave so many victims of moral wrongs helpless, even though they have actually suffered material and moral injury. In the case at bar, petitioners claim that they did not violate any provision of law since they were merely exercising their legal right to dismiss private respondent.

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Nevertheless, the Court, after examining the record and circumstances of the case ruled that petitioners have indeed abused the right that they invoke, causing damage to private respondent. Notwithstanding the fact that it was private respondent Tobias who reported the possible existence of anomalous transactions, petitioner Hendry showed belligerence and told plaintiff that he was the number one suspect and to take a one week vacation leave, not to communicate with the office, to leave his table drawers open, and to leave his keys to petitioner Hendry. The high-handed treatment accorded Tobias by petitioners was certainly uncalled for. And this reprehensible attitude of petitioners was to continue when private respondent returned to work after his one week forced leave. Upon reporting for work, Tobias was confronted by Hendry who said. "Tobby, you are the crook and swindler in this company." The imputation of guilt without basis and the pattern of harassment during the investigations of Tobias transgress the standards of human conduct set forth in Article 19 of the Civil Code. The Court has already ruled that the right of the employer to dismiss an employee should not be confused with the manner in which the right is exercised and the effects flowing therefrom. Therefore, petitioners are liable for damages. Arnel P. Bacarra 18) BARONS MARKETING VS. CA G.R. No. 126486, February 9, 1998 FACTS Private respondent Phelps Dodge, Phil. Appointed petitioner Barons Marketing Corp as one of its dealers of electrical wires and cables. As such, petitioner was given by private respondent 60 days credit for its purchases reckoned from the date of delivery. During the period December 1986 to August 1987, defendant purchased on credit from plaintiff various electrical wires and cables in the total amount of P4,102,438.3. Of this amount, P300,000 was paid leaving a balance of P3,802,748.2. Respondent wrote petitioner demanding payment of its unpaid obligation. In response, petitioner requests to pay the amount in monthly installments of P500,000 plus 1% interest. Said offer was rejected by respondent. Thereafter, private respondent filed a complaint before the Pasig RTC against petitioner for recovery of P3,802,748.2, including interest with 25% attorneys fees, exemplary damages of P100,000 and cost of litigation. In its answer, petitioner admitted the purchase made but disputed the amount. Petitioner likewise interposed a counterclaim on the ground of abuse of rights since it suffered injury to its reputation. The trial court rendered its decision in favor of private respondent, which decision was affirmed by the Court of Appeals. ISSUE: Whether or not private respondent is guilty of abuse of rights or whether private respondent intended to prejudice or injure petitioner when it rejected petitioners offer and filed the action for collection. HELD: No. It is an elementary rule in jurisdiction that good faith is presumed and that the burden of proving bad faith rests upon the party alleging the same. In the case at bar, petitioner has failed to prove bad faith on the part of private respondent. Private respondent was driven by legitimate reasons for rejecting petitioners offer and instituting the action for collection before the trial court. As pointed out by private respondent. The corporation had its own cash position to protect in order to pay its own obligations. Clearly, this would be inimical to the interests of any enterprise, especially profit-oriented one like private respondent. It is plain to see that this is a case of an exercise of rights, not an abuse thereof. As such, private respondent has not acted in a manner contrary to morals, good customs or public policy as to violate Article 21 of the Civil Code. Arnel P. Bacarra 19) MWSS vs. Act Theater G.R. No. 147076, June 17, 2004 FACTS: On September 22, 1988, four employees of the respondent Act Theater, Inc., namely, Rodolfo Tabian, Armando Aguilar, Arnel Concha and Modesto Ruales, were apprehended by members of the Quezon City police force for allegedly tampering a water meter in violation of P.D. No. 401, as amended by B.P. Blg. 876. On account of the incident, the respondents water service connection was cut off. Consequently, the respondent filed a complaint for injunction with damages against the petitioner MWSS.

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In the civil case, the respondent alleged in its complaint filed with the court a quo that the petitioner acted arbitrarily, whimsically and capriciously, in cutting off the respondents water service connection without prior notice. Due to lack of water, the health and sanitation, not only of the respondents patrons but in the surrounding premises as well, were adversely affected. The respondent prayed that the petitioner be directed to pay damages. The petitioner insists that in cutting off the respondents water service connection, the petitioner merely exercised its proprietary right under Article 429 of the Civil Code, which provides that the owner or lawful possessor of a thing has the right to exclude any person from the enjoyment and disposal thereof. ISSUE: Whether or not the petitioner validly exercised its right under Article 429 of the Civil Code. HELD: No, the petitioner did not validly exercise its right under Article 429 of the Civil Code. A right is a power, privilege, or immunity guaranteed under a constitution, statute or decisional law, or recognized as a result of long usage, constitutive of a legally enforceable claim of one person against the other. Concededly, the petitioner, as the owner of the utility providing water supply to certain consumers including the respondent, had the right to exclude any person from the enjoyment and disposal thereof. However, the exercise of rights is not without limitations. Having the right should not be confused with the manner by which such right is to be exercised. When a right is exercised in a manner, which discards these norms resulting in damage to another, a legal wrong is committed for which actor can be held accountable. In this case, the petitioner failed to act with justice and give the respondent what is due to it when the petitioner unceremoniously cut off the respondents water service connection. Arnel P. Bacarra 20) Carpio vs. Valmonte G.R. No. 151866, September 9, 2004 FACTS: Respondent Leonora Valmonte is a wedding coordinator. Michelle del Rosario and Jon Sierra engaged her services for their church wedding. At about 4:30 p.m. on that day, Valmonte went to the Manila Hotel where the bride and her family were billeted. When she arrived, several persons were already there. Among those present was petitioner Soledad Carpio, an aunt of the bride who was preparing to dress up for the occasion. After reporting to the bride, Valmonte went out of the suite. She proceeded to the Maynila Restaurant where the reception was to be held. She paid the suppliers, gave the meal allowance to the band, and went back to the suite. Upon entering the suite, Valmonte noticed the people staring at her. It was at this juncture that petitioner allegedly uttered the following words to Valmonte: "Ikaw lang ang lumabas ng kwarto, nasaan ang dala mong bag? Saan ka pumunta? Ikaw lang and lumabas ng kwarto, ikaw ang kumuha." Petitioner then ordered one of the ladies to search Valmontes bag. It turned out that after Valmonte left the room to attend to her duties, petitioner discovered that the pieces of jewelry which she placed inside the comfort room in a paper bag were lost. The bags and personal belongings of all the people inside the room were searched. Valmonte was allegedly bodily searched, interrogated and trailed by a security guard throughout the evening. Later, police officers arrived and interviewed all persons who had access to the suite and fingerprinted them including Valmonte. During all the time Valmonte was being interrogated by the police officers, petitioner kept on saying the words "Siya lang ang lumabas ng kwarto." Valmontes car which was parked at the hotel premises was also searched but the search yielded nothing. After a futile attempt for a formal apology, Valmonte filed a suit for damages against Carpio. The trial court rendered dismissed Valmontes complaint for damages. It ruled that when petitioner sought investigation for the loss of her jewelry, she was merely exercising her right and if damage results from a person exercising his legal right, it is damnum absque injuria. The CA reversed, holding that petitioners verbal assault upon Valmonte was done with malice and in bad faith since it was made in the presence of many people without any solid proof except petitioners suspicion. Such unfounded accusation entitles Valmonte to an award of moral damages for she was publicly humiliated, deeply insulted, and embarrassed. ISSUE: Should Valmonte be entitled to

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Damages? HELD: Yes. The victim of a wrongful act or omission, whether done willfully or negligently, is not left without any remedy or recourse to obtain relief for the damage or injury he sustained. Incorporated into our civil law are not only principles of equity but also universal moral precepts which are designed to indicate certain norms that spring from the fountain of good conscience and which are meant to serve as guides for human conduct. First of these fundamental precepts is the principle commonly known as "abuse of rights" under Article 19 of the Civil Code. It provides that "Every person must, in the exercise of his rights and in the performance of his duties, act with justice, give everyone his due and observe honesty and good faith." One is not allowed to exercise his right in a manner which would cause unnecessary prejudice to another or if he would thereby offend morals or good customs. In the case at bar, petitioners verbal reproach against respondent was certainly uncalled for considering that by her own account nobody knew that she brought such kind and amount of jewelry inside the paper bag. This being the case, she had no right to attack respondent with her innuendos which were not merely inquisitive but outrightly accusatory. By openly accusing respondent as the only person who went out of the room before the loss of the jewelry in the presence of all the guests therein, and ordering that she be immediately bodily searched, petitioner virtually branded respondent as the thief. True, petitioner had the right to ascertain the identity of the malefactor, but to malign respondent without an iota of proof that she was the one who actually stole the jewelry is an act which, by any standard or principle of law is impermissible. Petitioner had willfully caused injury to respondent in a manner which is contrary to morals and good customs. Her firmness and resolve to find her missing jewelry cannot justify her acts toward respondent. She did not act with justice and good faith for apparently, she had no other purpose in mind but to prejudice respondent. Certainly, petitioner transgressed the provisions of Article 19 in relation to Article 21 for which she should be held accountable. Arnel P. Bacarra FACTS: Plaintiff-respondent Loreto Dionela alleges that the defamatory words on the telegram sent to him not only wounded his feelings but also caused him undue embarrassment and affected adversely his business as well because other people have come to know of said defamatory words. Defendantcorporation as a defense, alleges that the additional words in Tagalog was a private joke between the sending and receiving operators and that they were not addressed to or intended for plaintiff and therefore did not form part of the telegram and that the Tagalog words are not defamatory. The telegram sent through its facilities was received in its station at Legaspi City. Nobody other than the operator manned the teletype machine which automatically receives telegrams being transmitted. The said telegram was detached from the machine and placed inside a sealed envelope and delivered to plaintiff, obviously as is. The additional words in Tagalog were never noticed and were included in the telegram when delivered. The trial court ruled that in favor of the plaintiff holding that the liability of petitioner-companyemployer is predicated on Articles 19 and 20 of the Civil Code. The Court of Appeals affirmed the decision, upon appeal. ISSUE: Whether or not petitioner-companyemployer is liable for damages under Articles 19 and 20 of the Civil Code. HELD: Yes. The cause of action of the private respondent is based on Arts. 19 and 20 of the New Civil Code. As well as on respondent's breach of contract thru the negligence of its own employees. Petitioner is a domestic corporation engaged in the business of receiving and transmitting messages. Every time a person transmits a message through the facilities of the petitioner, a contract is entered into. Upon receipt of the rate or fee fixed, the petitioner undertakes to transmit the message accurately. There is no question that in the case at bar, libelous matters were included in the message transmitted, without the consent or knowledge of the sender. There is a clear case of breach of contract by the petitioner in adding extraneous and libelous matters in the message sent to the private respondent. As a corporation, the petitioner can act only through its employees. Hence the acts of its employees in receiving and transmitting messages are the acts of the petitioner.

21) RCPI VS CA G.R No. L-44748, August 29, 1986

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To hold that the petitioner is not liable directly for the acts of its employees in the pursuit of petitioner's business is to deprive the general public availing of the services of the petitioner of an effective and adequate remedy. In most cases, negligence must be proved in order that plaintiff may recover. However, since negligence may be hard to substantiate in some cases, we may apply the doctrine of RES IPSA LOQUITUR (the thing speaks for itself), by considering the presence of facts or circumstances surrounding the injury. The decision is affirmed. 22) MERALCO vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. L-39019, January 22, 1988 FACTS: Petitioner Manila Electric Company (MERALCO) is a public utility corporation providing electric power for the consumption of the general public in Metro Manila. Petitioner Pedro Yambao is a bill collector of MERALCO. Private respondents Isaac Chaves and Juana O. Chaves, husband and wife, filed the complaint for damages, together with their children, Isaac Chaves Jr. and Rosendo Chaves. Isaac Sr. And Isaac Jr. and Rosendo were members of the Philippine Bar; Isaac Sr. And Isaac Jr. were practicing lawyers and Rosendo was a legal officer at the Agricultural Productivity Commission. Juana O. Chaves was a public school teacher. Private respondents became the customer of petitioner MERALCO in the year 1953. At or about the end of March, 1965, petitioner Yambao went to the residence of private respondents and presented two overdue bills, one for January 11 to February 9, 1965, for the sum of P7.90, and the other for February 9 to March 10, 1965, for the sum of P7.20. On April 2, 1965, Isaac Chaves went to the main office of petitioner but paid only one bill, for January 11 to February 9, 1965, leaving the other bill unpaid. Thereafter, on April 21, 1965, petitioner caused the electric service in private respondents residence to be discontinued and the power line cut off. On the following day, Rosendo went to petitioners main office and paid the unpaid bill. The power line was restored at about 7:00 pm on the same day. Private respondents filed an action for recovery of damages for embarrassment, humiliation, wounded feelings and hurt pride by reason of the disconnection of their electric service by the petitioner. The CFI ordered rendered decision in favor of private respondent, ordering petitioner to pay private respondent moral damages, exemplary damages and attorneys fees. The Court of Appeal, affirmed in toto the trial courts decision. Respondent Court stressed the importance and necessity of 48 hour advance written notification before the disconnection of service may be effected. ISSUE: Whether advance written notification before the disconnection of service may be effected? RULING: Yes. Petitioner being a public Utility having monopoly of the supply of electrical power in Metro Manila and some nearby municipalities. Being such, the State may regulate the conditions under which the manner by which a public utility such as MERALCO may effect a disconnection of service to delinquent customer. Among others, a prior written notice to the customer is required before disconnection of service. Failure to give such prior notice amounts to a tort. 23) CUSTUDIO vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. 116100. February 9, 1996. FACTS: Herein private respondents owned a parcel of land wherein a two-storey apartment building was constituted therein, for this, tenants then were occupying the latter building. Such property was surrounded by other immovables (houses) owned by herein petitioners, Custidio and Santos. Before reaching the property of the private respondents from the P. Burgos St. there were two passage ways in between the said other immovable, but however, they were only narrow paths. After sometimes, the petitioners constructed adobe fence in the first passageway making it narrower in width. Said adobe fence was first constructed by defendants Santoses along their property which is also along the first passageway. Defendant Morato constructed her adobe fence and even extended said fence in such a way that the entire passageway was enclosed. As a result, the tenants left the apartment because there was no longer a permanent access -ingress and engress to the public street. The private respondents filed an action for the grant of an easement of right of way. The trial court ordered the petitioner to give plaintiff permanent access ingress and egress, to the public street and that in turn, the private respondent will pay a

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sum of Php 8000 to the petitioner as an indemnity for the permanent use of the passageway. On appeal by the private respondent to the CA, the latter Court affirmed the decision of the lower court as to give a right of way to the private respondents and awarded the latter actual, moral and exemplary damages. For this, petitioner appealed to the SC questioning the award of damages. ISSUE: Whether or not the award of damages is proper? RULING: No. A reading of the decision of the Court of Appeals will show that the award of damages was based solely on the fact that the original plaintiff, Pacifico Mabasa, incurred losses in the form of unrealized rentals when the tenants vacated the leased premises by reason of the closure of the passageway. However, the mere fact that the plaintiff suffered losses does not give rise to a right to recover damages. To warrant the recovery of damages, there must be both a right of action for a legal wrong inflicted by the defendant, and damage resulting to the plaintiff therefrom. Wrong without damage, or damage without wrong, does not constitute a cause of action, since damages are merely part of the remedy allowed for the injury caused by a breach or wrong. There is a material distinction between damages and injury. Injury is the illegal invasion of a legal right; damage is the loss, hurt, or harm which results from the injury, and damages are the recompense or compensation awarded for the damage suffered. Thus, there can be damage without injury in those instances in which the loss or harm was not the result of a violation of a legal duty. These situations are often called damnum absque injuria. In order that a plaintiff may maintain an action for the injuries of which he complains, he must establish that such injuries resulted from a breach of duty which the defendant owed to the plaintiff a concurrence of injury to the plaintiff and legal responsibility by the person causing it. In the case at bar, although there was damage, there was no legal injury. Contrary to the claim of private respondents, petitioners could not be said to have violated the principle of abuse of right. In order that the principle of abuse of right provided in Article 21 of the Civil Code can be applied, it is essential that the following requisites concur: (1) The defendant should have acted in a manner that is contrary to morals, good customs or public policy; (2) The acts should be willful; and (3) There was damage or injury to the plaintiff. The act of petitioners in constructing a fence within their lot is a valid exercise of their right as owners, hence not contrary to morals, good customs or public policy. The law recognizes in the owner the right to enjoy and dispose of a thing, without other limitations than those established by law. It is within the right of petitioners, as owners, to enclose and fence their property. Article 430 of the Civil Code provides that (e)very owner may enclose or fence his land or tenements by means of walls, ditches, live or dead hedges, or by any other means without detriment to servitudes constituted thereon. At the time of the construction of the fence, the lot was not subject to any servitudes. There was no easement of way existing in favor of private respondents, either by law or by contract. The fact that private respondents had no existing right over the said passageway is confirmed by the very decision of the trial court granting a compulsory right of way in their favor after payment of just compensation. It was only that decision which gave private respondents the right to use the said passageway after payment of the compensation and imposed a corresponding duty on petitioners not to interfere in the exercise of said right. 24) GASHEM vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. 97336. February 19, 1993. FACTS: On 27 October 1987, private respondent, without the assistance of counsel, filed with the aforesaid trial court a complaint for damages against the petitioner for the alleged violation of their agreement to get married. She alleges in said complaint that: she is 22 years old, single, Filipino and a pretty lass of good moral character and reputation duly respected in her community; petitioner, on the other hand, is an Iranian citizen residing at the Lozano Apartments, Guilig, Dagupan City, and is an exchange student taking a medical course at the Lyceum Northwestern Colleges in Dagupan City; that the plaintiff is an employee at Mabuhay Luncheonette, Fernandez Avenue, Dagupan City and that the parties happened to know each other when the Manager of the Mabuhay Luncheonette, Johnny Rabino introduced the defendant to the plaintiff; the latter courted and proposed to marry her; she accepted his love on the condition that they would get married; they therefore agreed to get married after the end of the school semester, which was in October of that year; petitioner then visited the private respondent's parents in Baaga, Bugallon, Pangasinan to secure their approval to the marriage; sometime in 20 August 1987, the petitioner forced her to live with

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him in the Lozano Apartments; she was a virgin before she began living with him; as a result of this live-in relationship, plaintiff became pregnant, but defendant gave her some medicine to abort the foetus. Still plaintiff continued to live with defendant and kept reminding him of his promise to marry her until he told her that he could not do so because he was already married to a girl in Bacolod City. Private respondent then prayed for judgment ordering the petitioner to pay her damages in the amount of not less than P45,000.00, reimbursement for actual expenses amounting to P600.00, attorney's fees and costs, and granting her such other relief and remedies as may be just and equitable. In his Answer with Counterclaim, petitioner claimed that he never proposed marriage to or agreed to be married with the private respondent; he neither sought the consent and approval of her parents nor forced her to live in his apartment; he did not maltreat her, but only told her to stop coming to his place because he discovered that she had deceived him by stealing his money and passport. After trial on the merits, the lower court, applying Article 21 of the Civil Code, rendered a decision favoring the private respondent. The petitioner was thus ordered to pay the latter damages and attorney's fees. The decision is anchored on the trial court's findings and conclusions that (a) petitioner and private respondent were lovers, (b) private respondent is not a woman of loose morals or questionable virtue who readily submits to sexual advances, (c) petitioner, through machinations, deceit and false pretenses, promised to marry private respondent, (d) because of his persuasive promise to marry her, she allowed herself to be deflowered by him, (e) by reason of that deceitful promise, private respondent and her parents in accordance with Filipino customs and traditions made some preparations for the wedding that was to be held at the end of October 1987 by looking for pigs and chickens, inviting friends and relatives and contracting sponsors, (f) petitioner did not fulfill his promise to marry her and (g) such acts of the petitioner, who is a foreigner and who has abused Philippine hospitality, have offended our sense of morality, good customs, culture and traditions. The CA affirmed in toto the trial court's ruling. Unfazed by his second defeat, petitioner filed the instant petition. ISSUE: Whether or not Article 21 of the Civil Code applies to the case at bar. RULING: It is petitioner's thesis that said Article 21 is not applicable because he had not committed any moral wrong or injury or violated any good custom or public policy; he has not professed love or proposed marriage to the private respondent; and he has never maltreated her. He criticizes the trial court for liberally invoking Filipino customs, traditions and culture, and ignoring the fact that since he is a foreigner, he is not conversant with such Filipino customs, traditions and culture. As an Iranian Moslem, he is not familiar with Catholic and Christian ways. He stresses that even if he had made a promise to marry, the subsequent failure to fulfill the same is excusable or tolerable because of his Moslem upbringing; he then alludes to the Muslim Code which purportedly allows a Muslim to take four (4) wives and concludes that on the basis thereof, the trial court erred in ruling that he does not possess good moral character. Moreover, his controversial "common law wife" is now his legal wife as their marriage had been solemnized in civil ceremonies in the Iranian Embassy. As to his unlawful cohabitation with the private respondent, petitioner claims that even if responsibility could be pinned on him for the live-in relationship, the private respondent should also be faulted for consenting to an illicit arrangement. Finally, petitioner asseverates that even if it was to be assumed arguendo that he had professed his love to the private respondent and had also promised to marry her, such acts would not be actionable in view of the special circumstances of the case. The mere breach of promise is not actionable. The existing rule is that a breach of promise to marry per se is not an actionable wrong . Congress deliberately eliminated from the draft of the New Civil Code the provisions that would have made it so. The reason therefor is set forth in the report of the Senate Committee on the Proposed Civil Code, from which We quote: "The elimination of this chapter is proposed. That breach of promise to marry is not actionable has been definitely decided in the case of De Jesus vs. Syquia. The history of breach of promise suits in the United States and in England has shown that no other action lends itself more readily to abuse by designing women and unscrupulous men. It is this experience which has led to the abolition of rights of action in the so-called Heart Balm suits in many of the American states .." This notwithstanding, the said Code contains a provision, Article 21, which is designed to expand the concept of torts or quasi-delict in this jurisdiction by granting adequate legal remedy for the untold number of moral wrongs which is impossible for

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human foresight to specifically enumerate and punish in the statute books. Article 2176, of the Civil Code, which defines a quasi-delict thus: "Whoever by act or omission causes damage to another, there being fault or negligence, is obliged to pay for the damage done. Such fault or negligence, if there is no pre-existing contractual relation between the parties, is called a quasi-delict and is governed by the provisions of this Chapter." is limited to negligent acts or omissions and excludes the notion of willfulness or intent. Quasi-delict, known in Spanish legal treatises as culpa aquiliana, is a civil law concept while torts is an AngloAmerican or common law concept. Torts is much broader than culpa aquiliana because it includes not only negligence, but intentional criminal acts as well such as assault and battery, false imprisonment and deceit. In the general scheme of the Philippine legal system envisioned by the Commission responsible for drafting the New Civil Code, intentional and malicious acts with certain exceptions, are to be governed by the Revised Penal Code while negligent acts or omissions are to be covered by Article 2176 of the Civil Code. In between these opposite spectrums are injurious acts which, in the absence of Article 21, would have been beyond redress. Thus, Article 21 fills that vacuum. It is even postulated that together with Articles 19 and 20 of the Civil Code, Article 21 has greatly broadened the scope of the law on civil wrongs; it has become much more supple and adaptable than the AngloAmerican law on torts. In the light of the above laudable purpose of Article 21, We are of the opinion, and so hold, that where a man's promise to marry is in fact the proximate cause of the acceptance of his love by a woman and his representation to fulfill that promise thereafter becomes the proximate cause of the giving of herself unto him in a sexual congress, proof that he had, in reality, no intention of marrying her and that the promise was only a subtle scheme or deceptive device to entice or inveigle her to accept him and to obtain her consent to the sexual act, could justify the award of damages pursuant to Article 21 not because of such promise to marry but because of the fraud and deceit behind it and the willful injury to her honor and reputation which followed thereafter. It is essential, however, that such injury should have been committed in a manner contrary to morals, good customs or public policy. In the instant case, respondent Court found that it was the petitioner's "fraudulent and deceptive protestations of love for and promise to marry plaintiff that made her surrender her virtue and womanhood to him and to live with him on the honest and sincere belief that he would keep said promise, and it was likewise these fraud and deception on appellant's part that made plaintiff's parents agree to their daughter's living-in with him preparatory to their supposed marriage." In short, the private respondent surrendered her virginity, the cherished possession of every single Filipina, not because of lust but because of moral seduction the kind illustrated by the Code Commission in its example earlier adverted to. The petitioner could not be held liable for criminal seduction punished under either Article 337 or Article 338 of the Revised Penal Code because the private respondent was above eighteen (18) years of age at the time of the seduction. We are unable to agree with the petitioner's alternative proposition to the effect that granting, for argument's sake, that he did promise to marry the private respondent, the latter is nevertheless also at fault. According to him, both parties are in pari delicto; hence, pursuant to Article 1412(1) of the Civil Code and the doctrine laid down in Batarra vs. Marcos, the private respondent cannot recover damages from the petitioner. The latter even goes as far as stating that if the private respondent had "sustained any injury or damage in their relationship, it is primarily because of her own doing." These statements reveal the true character and motive of the petitioner. It is clear that he harbors a condescending, if not sarcastic, regard for the private respondent on account of the latter's ignoble birth, inferior educational background, poverty and, as perceived by him, dishonorable employment. Obviously then, from the very beginning, he was not at all moved by good faith and an honest motive. Marrying with a woman so circumstanced could not have even remotely occurred to him. Thus, his profession of love and promise to marry were empty words directly intended to fool, dupe, entice, beguile and deceive the poor woman into believing that indeed, he loved her and would want her to be his life partner. His was nothing but pure lust which he wanted satisfied by a Filipina who honestly believed that by accepting his proffer of love and proposal of marriage, she would be able to enjoy a life of ease and security. Petitioner clearly violated the Filipino's concept of morality and so brazenly defied the traditional respect Filipinos have for their women. It can even be said that the petitioner committed such deplorable acts in blatant disregard of Article 19 of the Civil Code which directs every person to act with justice, give everyone his due and observe honesty

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and good faith in the exercise of his rights and in the performance of his obligations. No foreigner must be allowed to make a mockery of our laws, customs and traditions. The pari delicto rule does not apply in this case for while indeed, the private respondent may not have been impelled by the purest of intentions, she eventually submitted to the petitioner in sexual congress not out of lust, but because of moral seduction. In fact, it is apparent that she had qualms of conscience about the entire episode for as soon as she found out that the petitioner was not going to marry her after all, she left him. She is not, therefore, in pari delicto with the petitioner. Pari delicto means "in equal fault; in a similar offense or crime; equal in guilt or in legal fault." At most, it could be conceded that she is merely in delicto. We should stress, however, that while We find for the private respondent, let it not be said that this Court condones the deplorable behavior of her parents in letting her and the petitioner stay together in the same room in their house after giving approval to their marriage. It is the solemn duty of parents to protect the honor of their daughters and infuse upon them the higher values of morality and dignity. 25) RELLOSA vs. PELLOSIS G.R. No. 138964 August 9, 2001. FACTS: Respondents were lessees of a parcel of land, owned by one Marta Reyes, located at Malate, Manila. Respondents had built their houses on the land which, over the years, underwent continuous improvements. After the demise of Marta, the land was inherited by her son Victor Reyes. Sometime in 1986, Victor informed respondents that, for being lessees of the land for more than twenty (20) years, they would have a right of first refusal to buy the land. Sometime in the early part of 1989, without the knowledge of respondents, the land occupied by them was sold to petitioner Cynthia Ortega who was able to ultimately secure title to the property in her name. On 31 May 1989, respondents filed with the Regional Trial Court of Manila a suit for the "Declaration of Nullity of the Sale," made in favor of petitioner Cynthia Ortega predicated upon their right of first refusal. The Office of the Building Official issued a resolution ordering the demolition of the houses of respondents. The following day Cynthia Ortega, together with her father and co-petitioner, Vicente Rellosa, hired workers to commence the demolition of respondents' houses. Due to the timely intervention of a mobile unit of the Western Police District, the intended demolition did not take place following talks between petitioner Rellosa and counsel who pleaded that the demolition be suspended since the order sought to be implemented was not yet final and executory. On 11 December 1989, respondents filed their appeal contesting the order of the Office of the Building Official. On 12 December 1989, petitioners once again hired workers and proceeded with the demolition of respondents' houses. Respondents filed Civil Case before the Regional Trial Court of Manila, praying that petitioners be ordered to pay moral and exemplary damages, as well as attorneys fees, for the untimely demolition of the houses. The RTC dismissed the complaint of respondents and instead ordered them to pay petitioners moral damages. The Court of Appeals reversed the decision of the trial court and ordered petitioners to pay respondents of moral damages, exemplary damages and Attorney's fees. ISSUE: Whether or not there is a premature demolition RULING: The Court upheld the decision of the Court of Appeals that there was a premature demolition. Hence, the petitioners should pay damages to the lessees. A right is a power, privilege, or immunity guaranteed under a constitution, statute or decisional law, or recognized as a result of long usage, constitutive of a legally enforceable claim of one person against another. The exercise of these rights is not without limitations. The abuse of rights rule established in Article 19 of the Civil Code requires every person to act with justice, to give everyone his due; and to observe honesty and good faith. When a right is exercised in a manner which discards these norms resulting in damage to another, a legal wrong is committed for which the actor can be held accountable. At the time petitioners implemented the order of demolition, barely five days after respondents received a copy thereof, the same was not yet final and executory. The law provided for a fifteen-day appeal period in favor of a party aggrieved by an adverse ruling of the Office of the Building Official but by the precipitate action of petitioners in demolishing the houses of respondents (prior to the expiration of the period to appeal), the latter were effectively deprived of this recourse. The fact that

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the order of demolition was later affirmed by the Department of Public Works and Highways was of no moment. The action of petitioners up to the point where they were able to secure an order of demolition was not condemnable but implementing the order unmindful of the right of respondents to contest the ruling was a different matter and could only be held utterly indefensible. Digested by: Baet, Mark 26) NATIONAL POWER CORPORATION PHILIPP BROTHERS OCEANIC, INC. G.R. No. 126204, November 20, 2001 vs. damages due to the delay in the delivery of the first coal shipment. This prompted PHIBRO to file an action for damages with application for injunction against NAPOCOR with the Regional Trial Court, Branch 57, Makati City. In its complaint, PHIBRO alleged that NAPOCOR's act of disqualifying it in the October 1987 bidding and in all subsequent biddings was tainted with malice and bad faith. ISSUE: Whether or not NAPOCOR abused its right or acted unjustly in disqualifying PHIBRO from the public bidding. RULING: No. NAPOCOR was not bound under any contract to approve PHIBRO's pre-qualification requirements. In fact, NAPOCOR had expressly reserved its right to reject bids as provided in its Instruction to Bidders found in the "Post-Qualification Documents/Specifications for the Supply and Delivery of Coal for the Batangas Coal-Fired Thermal Power Plant I. 27) FRENZEL vs. CATITO G.R. No. 143958, July 11, 2003 FACTS: Petitioner Alfred Fritz Frenzel is an Australian citizen of German descent who was married to Teresita Santos, a Filipino citizen. He works as a pilot for New Guinea Airlines. On the other hand, private respondent Ederlina P. Catito was married to Klaus Muller, a German national. She worked as a masseuse in the Kings Cross nightclub in Sydney, Australia. The two met when Alfred went on a vacation in Sydney. They met again and this time, Alfred was able to convince Ederlina to stop working and to go back to the Philippines. When she returned to the Philippines, she was given money by Alfred to put up a beauty salon. Later on, he also gave money to her to be able to purchase a house and lot in San Francisco del Monte, Quezon City. But since he was aware that aliens were prohibited to purchase lands, he agreed to have Ederlina as the sole vendee. Later also, they opened two bank accounts with the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation in Kowloon, Hong Kong. Also, there were subsequent purchases of other real and personal properties. These were made on the anticipation on the part of Alfred that he and Ederlina will get married soon. However, this failed to materialize because of the fact that Ederlina was still married to Klaus. Ederlina failed to secure a divorce from Klaus. This exasperated Alfred and eventually

FACTS: On May 14, 1987, the National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR) issued invitations to bid for the supply and delivery of 120,000 metric tons of imported coal for its Batangas Coal-Fired Thermal Power Plant in Calaca, Batangas. The Philipp Brothers Oceanic, Inc. (PHIBRO) prequalified and was allowed to participate as one of the bidders. After the public bidding was conducted, PHIBRO's bid was accepted. NAPOCOR's acceptance was conveyed in a letter dated July 8, 1987, which was received by PHIBRO on July 15, 1987. On July 10, 1987, PHIBRO sent word to NAPOCOR that industrial disputes might soon plague Australia, the shipment's point of origin, which could seriously hamper PHIBRO's ability to supply the needed coal. From July 23 to July 31, 1987, PHIBRO again apprised NAPOCOR of the situation in Australia, particularly informing the latter that the ship owners therein are not willing to load cargo unless a "strikefree" clause is incorporated in the charter party or the contract of carriage. In order to hasten the transfer of coal, PHIBRO proposed to NAPOCOR that they equally share the burden of a "strike-free" clause. NAPOCOR refused. On August 6, 1987, PHIBRO received from NAPOCOR a confirmed and workable letter of credit. Instead of delivering the coal on or before the thirtieth day after receipt of the Letter of Credit, as agreed upon by the parties in the July contract, PHIBRO effected its first shipment only on November 17, 1987. Consequently, in October 1987, NAPOCOR once more advertised for the delivery of coal to its Calaca thermal plant. PHIBRO participated anew in this subsequent bidding. On November 24, 1987, NAPOCOR disapproved PHIBRO's application for pre-qualification to bid for not meeting the minimum requirements. Upon further inquiry, PHIBRO found that the real reason for the disapproval was its purported failure to satisfy NAPOCOR's demand for

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their relationship started to fade. Later on, Alfred filed a complaint before the RTC of Davao City for recovery of real and personal properties. He demanded from Ederlina that she return all the money that were used to purchase the properties and also the properties which were bought, especially the house and lot and three other lots. However, the complaint of Alfred was dismissed by the RTC. On appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the RTC in toto. ISSUE: Whether or not Alfred is entitled to recover the said properties? RULING: The Supreme Court ruled in the negative. The contention of petitioner Frenzel that to bar him from recovering the properties would be in violation of Article 22 of the Civil Code on unjust enrichment did not hold water. It must be remembered that a contract which violates the Constitution and the laws is void and vests no rights and creates no obligations. It does not produce any legal effect. His reliance on Article 22 is misplaced because in this case, the action is proscribed by the Constitution or the parties are in pari delicto. This is founded on the general principles of public policy. It must be remembered that Alfred knew all along that he was disqualified from purchasing lands. His contention that he entered into the transaction because he was expecting that he and Ederlina will get married in the future is not a valid one. He also knew that he cannot get married to Ederlina because he still had a valid existing marriage with Teresita Santos. 28) REYES vs. LIM G.R. No. 134241, August 11, 2003 FACTS: Petitoner Reyes and private respondent Lim entered into a Contract to sell a parcel of land located in F.B. Harrison, St. The parties stipulated that Lim shall pay a down payment of P10 Million of the P28 Million purchase price. On one hand, Reyes shall ensure that the lessee of the property, Harrison Lumber, shall have vacated the lot upon payment of the balance. The day to consummate the contract arrived however Harrison Lumber has still not vacated the land. Worse, Lim found out that Reyes had already sold the lot to Line One Food Corporation. Aggrieved, Lim filed an action for specific performance and nullification of the subsequent contract of sale plus damages. The trial court and Court of Appeals ruled in favor of Lim. Hence, the present petition. Reyes primarily contends that the CA erred in affirming the RTC Decision when it was based on equity. Petitioner argues that it is Rule 57 to 61 of the Rules on Civil Procedure which should be applied. ISSUE: Whether or not the contention of petitioner is tenable. RULING: According to the Supreme Court, the case involves an issue left unanswerable due to silence or insufficiency of the law and the rules of court. At this instance, Article 9 of the Civil Code expressly mandates the Court to make a ruling despite the silence, obscurity or insufficiency of the law. This calls for equity which fills open spaces in the law. Before rescission of the contract can be had, the parties must be restored to their status quo ante. This was ordered by the Court. To rule otherwise would improve Reyes to the detriment of Lim contrary to Article 22 of the Civil Code which provides that no person shall unjustly enrich himself at the expense of another. Article 22 applies to substantive as well as procedural remedies. Therefore, the decision of the Court of Appeals is affirmed. 29) NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT COMPANY vs. MADRIGAL WAN HAI LINES CORPORATION G.R. No. 148332, September 30, 2003 FACTS: The National Development Company, petitioner, is a government-owned and controlled corporation. petitioners Board of Directors approved the privatization plan of the NSCP. In May 1993, the Board offered for sale to the public its one hundred percent (100%) stock ownership in NSCP as well as its three (3) ocean-going vessels (M/V National Honor, M/V National Pride and M/V National Dignity). Consequently, petitioner released to the public an Information Package containing NSCPs background, assets, operational and financial status. During the public bidding the lone bidder was herein respondent, Madrigal Wan Hai Lines Corporation, a domestic private corporation. Mr. Willie J. Uy, respondents Consultant, submitted a bid of $15 million through the Proposal Letter Form. The respondents bid was rejected by petitioner and the Commission on Audit. But since there was no other bidder, petitioner entered into a negotiated sale with respondent. After

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several negotiations, respondent increased its offer to $18.5 million which was accepted by petitioner. Accordingly, petitioner issued a Notice of Award to respondent of the sale of the NSCP shares and vessels for $18.5 million.petitioner and respondent executed the corresponding Contract of Sale, and the latter acquired NSCP, its assets, personnel, records and its three (3) vessels. After a while, respondent was surprised to receive from the US Department of Treasury, Internal Revenue Service (US IRS), a Notice of Final Assessment against NSCP for deficiency taxes on gross transportation income derived from US sources for the years ending 1990, 1991 and 1992. Anxious that the delay in the payment of the deficiency taxes may hamper its shipping operations overseas, assumed and paid petitioners tax liabilities, including the tax due for the year 1993.Eventually, respondent demanded from petitioner reimbursement for the amounts it paid to the US IRS. But petitioner refused despite repeated demands. Hence, respondent filed with the Regional Trial Court complaint against petitioner for reimbursement and damages the RTC rendered a Decision in favor of respondent and against petitioner. The trial court found, among others, that even before the sale, petitioner knew that NSCP had tax liabilities with the US IRS, yet it did not inform respondent about it. Upon appeal, the Court of Appeals rendered a Decision affirming the trial courts judgment with modification. Hence this petition. ISSUE: Whether or not petitioner is legally bound to reimburse respondent for the amounts it paid corresponding to the formers tax liabilities to the US IRS. HELD: The case at bar calls to mind the principle of unjust enrichment Nemo cum alterius detrimento locupletari potest. No person shall be allowed to enrich himself unjustly at the expense of others. This principle of equity has been enshrined in our Civil Code, Article 22 of which provides: Art. 22. Every person who through an act or performance by another or by any other means, acquires or comes into possession of something at the expense of the latter without just or legal ground, shall return the same to him. Justice and equity thus oblige that petitioner be held liable for NSCPs tax liabilities and reimburse respondent for the amounts it paid. It would be unjust enrichment on the part of petitioner to be relieved of that obligation. DIGEST BY: JIHAN A.M. BANOCAG 30) ROY PADILLA, FILOMENO GALDONES, ISMAEL GONZALGO and JOSE FARLEY BEDENIA vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. L-39999 May 31, 1984 FACTS: That on or about February 8, 1964 at around 9:00 o'clock in the morning, in the municipality of Jose Panganiban, province of Camarines Norte, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above- named accused, Roy Padilla, Filomeno Galdones, Pepito Bedenia, Yolly Rico, David Bermundo, Villanoac, Roberto Rosales, Villania, Romeo Garrido, Jose Ortega, Jr., Ricardo Celestino, Realingo alias Kamlon, John Doe alias Tato, and Fourteen Richard Does, by confederating and mutually helping one another, and acting without any authority of law, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully, and feloniously, by means of threats, force and violence prevent Antonio Vergara and his family to close their stall located at the Public Market, Building No. 3, Jose Panganiban, Camarines Norte, and by subsequently forcibly opening the door of said stall and thereafter brutally demolishing and destroying said stall and the furnitures therein by axes and other massive instruments, and carrying away the goods, wares and merchandise, to the damage and prejudice of the said Antonio Vergara and his family in the amount of P30,000.00 in concept of actual or compensatory and moral damages, and further the sum of P20,000.00 as exemplary damages. That in committing the offense, the accused took advantage of their public positions: Roy Padilla, being the incumbent municipal mayor, and the rest of the accused being policemen, except Ricardo Celestino who is a civilian, all of Jose Panganiban, Camarines Norte, and that it was committed with evident premeditation. The Court of First Instance of Camarines Norte, rendered a decision finding the accused guilty. The petitioners appealed the judgment of conviction to the Court of Appeals. the Court of Appeals affirmed the lower court decision but with modification hence this petition. ISSUE: whether or not the respondent court committed a reversible error in requiring the petitioners to pay civil indemnity to the complainants after acquitting them from the criminal charge.

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HELD: The extinction of the civil action by reason of acquittal in the criminal case refers exclusively to civil liability ex delicto founded on Article 100 of the Revised Penal Code. (Elcano v. Hill, 77 SCRA 98; Virata v. Ochoa, 81 SCRA 472). In other words, the civil liability which is also extinguished upon acquittal of the accused is the civil liability arising from the act as a crime. Extinction of the penal action does not carry with it extinction of the civil, unless the extinction proceeds from a declaration in a final judgment that the fact from which the civil might arise did not exist. In other cases, the person entitled to the civil action may institute it in the Jurisdiction and in the manner provided by law against the person who may be liable for restitution of the thing and reparation or indemnity for the damage suffered. The judgment of acquittal extinguishes the liability of the accused for damages only when it includes a declaration that the facts from which the civil might arise did not exist. Thus, the civil liability is not extinguished by acquittal where the acquittal is based on reasonable doubt (PNB v. Catipon, 98 Phil. 286) as only preponderance of evidence is required in civil cases; where the court expressly declares that the liability of the accused is not criminal but only civil in nature (De Guzman v. Alvia, 96 Phil. 558; People v. Pantig, supra) as, for instance, in the felonies of estafa, theft, and malicious mischief committed by certain relatives who thereby incur only civil liability (See Art. 332, Revised Penal Code); and, where the civil liability does not arise from or is not based upon the criminal act of which the accused was acquitted (Castro v. Collector of Internal Revenue, 4 SCRA 1093; See Regalado, Remedial Law Compendium, 1983 ed., p. 623). Article 29 of the Civil Code also provides that: When the accused in a criminal prosecution is acquitted on the ground that his guilt has not been proved beyond reasonable doubt, a civil action for damages for the same act or omission may be instituted. Such action requires only a preponderance of evidence. Upon motion of the defendant, the court may require the plaintiff to file a bond to answer for damages in case the complaint should be found to be malicious. If in a criminal case the judgment of acquittal is based upon reasonable doubt, the court shall so declare. In the absence of any declaration to that effect, it may be inferred from the text of the decision whether or not the acquittal is due to that ground. There is nothing contrary to the Civil Code provision in the rendition of a judgment of acquittal and a judgment awarding damages in the same criminal action. The two can stand side by side. A judgment of acquittal operates to extinguish the criminal liability. It does not, however, extinguish the civil liability unless there is clear showing that the act from which civil liability might arise did not exist. A separate civil action may be warranted where additional facts have to be established or more evidence must be adduced or where the criminal case has been fully terminated and a separate complaint would be just as efficacious or even more expedient than a timely remand to the trial court where the criminal action was decided for further hearings on the civil aspects of the case. The offended party may, of course, choose to file a separate action. These do not exist in this case. Considering moreover the delays suffered by the case in the trial, appellate, and review stages, it would be unjust to the complainants in this case to require at this time a separate civil action to be filed. With this in mind, we therefore hold that the respondent Court of Appeals did not err in awarding damages despite a judgment of acquittal. WHEREFORE, we hereby AFFIRM the decision of the respondent Court of Appeals and dismiss the petition for lack of merit. SO ORDERED. DIGEST BY: JIHAN A.M. BANOCAG

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III. PREJUDICIAL QUESTION 31) DONATO VS. LUNA 160 SCRA 441 FACTS: Paz Abayan filed an information for Bigamy against petitioner Leonilo Donato. She also filed with the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court a civil action for declaration of nullity of marriage to petitioner because of a prior marriage of petitioner. In his answer petitioner claimed that his 2nd marriage was void because it was solemnized without a valid marriage license and that violence, intimation and undue influence were employed by Paz to obtain his consent. Prior to the date set for the trial of the criminal case, petitioner filed a motion to suspend the proceedings of the case because the civil action raises a prejudicial question which must first be determined before the criminal case can proceed. ISSUE: Does a criminal case for bigamy suspend the civil case of annulment of marriage on the ground that the latter constitutes a prejudicial question? HELD: The requisites of a prejudicial question do not obtain in the case at bar. I must be noted that the issue before the JDRC touching upon the nullity of the second marriage is not determinative of petitioner Donato's guilt or innocence in the crime of bigamy. Furthermore, it was petitioner's 2nd wife, the herein private respondent Paz Abayan who filed the complaint for annulment of the 2nd marriage on the ground that her consent was obtained through deceit. He who contracts a 2nd marriage before the judicial declaration of nullity of first marriage assumes the risk of being prosecuted for bigamy. DIGEST BY: JIHAN A.M. BANOCAG 32) RICARDO QUIAMBAO vs. HON. ADRIANO OSORIO G.R. No. L-48157, March 16, 1988 FACTS: In a complaint for forcible entry filed by herein private respondents Zenaida Gaza Buensucero, Justina Gaza Bernardo and Felipe Gaza against herein petitioner Ricardo Quiambao before the then Municipal Court of Malabon, Rizal,it was alleged that private respondents were the legitimate possessors of a 30,835 sq. m. lot known as Lot No. 4, Block 12, Bca 2039 of the Longos Estate situated at Barrio Longos, Malabon Rizal, by virtue of the Agreement to Sell No. 3482 executed in their favor by the former Land Tenure Administration ; that under cover of darkness, petitioner surreptitiously and by force, intimidation, strategy and stealth, entered into a 400 sq. m. portion thereof, placed bamboo posts "staka" over said portion and thereafter began the construction of a house thereon; After hearing, the municipal court denied the motion to dismiss. It ruled that inasmuch as the issue involved in the case was the recovery of physical possession, the court had jurisdiction to try and hear the case. Dissatisfied with this ruling, petitioner filed before the then Court of First Instance of Rizal, a petition for certiorari with injunction against public respondent Judge and private respondents, praying for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction ordering respondent judge to suspend the hearing in the ejectment case until after the resolution of said petition Private respondent filed a motion to dismiss the petition, maintaining that the administrative case did not constitute a prejudicial question as it involved the question of ownership, unlike the ejectment case which involved merely the question of possession. Meanwhile, the Land Authority filed an Urgent Motion for Leave to Intervene in Civil Case No. C1576 alleging the pendency of an administrative case between the same parties on the same subject matter and praying that the petition for certiorari be granted, the ejectment complaint be dismissed and the Office of the Land Authority be allowed to decide the matter exclusively. ISSUE: whether or not the administrative case between the private parties involving the lot subject matter of the ejectment case constitutes a prejudicial question which would operate as a bar to said ejectment case. HELD: A prejudicial question is understood in law to be that which arises in a case the resolution of which is a logical antecedent of the issue involved in said case and the cognizance of which pertains to another tribunal.The doctrine of prejudicial question comes into play generally in a situation where civil and criminal actions are pending and the issues involved in both cases are similar or so closely related that an issue must be pre-emptively resolved in the civil case before the criminal action can proceed. Thus, the existence of a prejudicial question in a civil case

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is alleged in the criminal case to cause the suspension of the latter pending final determination of the former. The essential elements of a prejudicial question as provided under Section 5, Rule 111 of the Revised Rules of Court are: [a] the civil action involves an issue similar or intimately related to the issue in the criminal action; and [b] the resolution of such issue determines whether or not the criminal action may proceed. The actions involved in the case at bar being respectively civil and administrative in character, it is obvious that technically, there is no prejudicial question to speak of. Equally apparent, however, is the intimate correlation between said two [2] proceedings, stemming from the fact that the right of private respondents to eject petitioner from the disputed portion depends primarily on the resolution of the pending administrative case. For while it may be true that private respondents had prior possession of the lot in question, at the time of the institution of the ejectment case, such right of possession had been terminated, or at the very least, suspended by the cancellation by the Land Authority of the Agreement to Sell executed in their favor. Whether or not private respondents can continue to exercise their right of possession is but a necessary, logical consequence of the issue involved in the pending administrative case assailing the validity of the cancellation of the Agreement to Sell and the subsequent award of the disputed portion to petitioner. If the cancellation of the Agreement to Sell and the subsequent award to petitioner are voided, then private respondents would have every right to eject petitioner from the disputed area. Otherwise, private respondent's light of possession is lost and so would their right to eject petitioner from said portion. Faced with these distinct possibilities, the more prudent course for the trial court to have taken is to hold the ejectment proceedings in abeyance until after a determination of the administrative case. Indeed, logic and pragmatism, if not jurisprudence, dictate such move. To allow the parties to undergo trial notwithstanding the possibility of petitioner's right of possession being upheld in the pending administrative case is to needlessly require not only the parties but the court as well to expend time, effort and money in what may turn out to be a sheer exercise in futility. Thus, 1 Am Jur 2d tells us: The court in which an action is pending may, in the exercise of a sound discretion, upon proper application for a stay of that action, hold the action in abeyance to abide the outcome of another pending in another court, especially where the parties and the issues are the same, for there is power inherent in every court to control the disposition of causes on its dockets with economy of time and effort for itself, for counsel, and for litigants. Where the rights parties to the second action cannot be properly determined until the questions raised in the first action are settled the second action should be stayed. While this rule is properly applicable to instances involving two [2] court actions, the existence in the instant case of the same considerations of Identity of parties and issues, economy of time and effort for the court, the counsels and the parties as well as the need to resolve the parties' right of possession before the ejectment case may be properly determined, justifies the rule's analogous application to the case at bar. If a pending civil case may be considered to be in the nature of a prejudicial question to an administrative case, We see no reason why the reverse may not be so considered in the proper case, such as in the petition at bar. WHEREFORE, the instant petition is hereby GRANTED. Civil Case No. 2526 of the then Municipal Court of Malabon, Rizal is hereby ordered DISMISSED. No Costs. SO ORDERED. DIGEST BY: JIHAN A.M. BANOCAG 33) ISABELO APA, MANUEL APA and LEONILO JACALAN vs. HON. RUMOLDO R. FERNANDEZ, HON. CELSO V. ESPINOSA, and SPS. FELIXBERTO TIGOL, JR. and ROSITA TAGHOY TIGOL G.R. No. 112381 March 20, 1995 FACTS: the above-named accused [herein petitioners Isabelo Apa, Manuel Apa and Dionisio Jacalan], conspiring, confederating and mutually helping with one another, without the knowledge and consent of the owner, ROSITA TIGOL, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously take advantage of the absence or tolerance of the said owner by occupying or possessing a portion of her real property, Lot No. 3635-B. whereon they constructed their respective residential houses against the will of Rosita Tigol, which acts of the said accused have deprived the latter of the use of a portion of her land, to her damage and prejudice because despite repeated demands the said accused failed and refused, as they still fail and refuse to vacate the premises above-mentioned. Petitioners moved for the suspension of their arraignment on the ground that there was a

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prejudicial question pending resolution in another case being tried in Branch 27 of the same court. The case, docketed as Civil Case No. 2247-L and entitled "Anselmo Taghoy and Vicente Apa versus Felixberto Tigol, Jr. and Rosita T. Tigol, et al.," concerns the ownership of Lot No. 3635-B. 1 In that case, petitioners seek a declaration of the nullity of TCT No. 13250 of Rosita T. Tigol and the partition of the lot in question among them and private respondent Rosita T. Tigol as heirs of Filomeno and Rita Taghoy. The case had been filed in 1990 by petitioners, three years before May 27, 1993 when the criminal case for squatting was filed against them. the trial court denied the petitioners' motion and proceeded with their arraignment. Petitioners, therefore, had to enter their plea (not guilty) to the charge. petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration but their motion was denied by the court in its order dated September 21, 1993. Hence, this petition. ISSUE: whether the question of ownership of Lot No. 3635B, which was pending, in Civil Case No. 2247-L, is a prejudicial question justifying suspension of the proceedings in the criminal case against petitioners. HELD: We hold that it is. A prejudicial question is a question which is based on a fact distinct and separate from the crime but so intimately connected with it that its resolution is determinative of the guilt or innocence of the accused. To justify suspension of the criminal action, it must appear not only that the civil case involves facts intimately related to those upon which the criminal prosecution is based but also that the decision of the issue or issues raised in the civil case would be decisive of the guilt or innocence of the accused. 2 Rule 111, 5 provides: Sec. 6. Elements of prejudicial question. The two (2) essential elements of a prejudicial questions are: (a) the civil action involves an issue similar or intimately related to the issue raised in the criminal action; and (b) the resolution of such issue determines whether or not the criminal action may proceed. In the criminal case, the question is whether petitioners occupied a piece of land not belonging to them but to private respondent and against the latter's will. As already noted, the information alleges that "without the knowledge and consent of the owner, ROSITA TIGOL" petitioners occupied or took possession of a portion of "her property" by building their houses thereon and "deprived [her] of the use of portion of her land to her damage and prejudice. Now the ownership of the land in question, known as Lot 3635-B of the Opon cadastre covered by TCT No. 13250, is the issue in Civil Case 2247-L now pending in Branch 27 of the RTC at Lapulapu City. The resolution, therefore, of this question would necessarily be determinative of petitioners criminal liability for squatting. WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED and respondent judge is ordered to SUSPEND the proceedings in Criminal Case No. 012489 until the question of ownership in Civil Case No. 2247-L has been resolved with finality and thereafter proceed with the trial of the criminal case if the civil case is decided and terminated adversely against petitioners. Otherwise he should dismiss the criminal case. SO ORDERED. DIGEST BY: JIHAN A.M. BANOCAG 34) BELTRAN VS. PEOPLE 334 SCRA 106 FACTS: Petitioner Maynardo Beltran and Charmaiene Felix were married on June 16, 1973 at the Immaculate Concepcion Parish Church in Cubao, Quezon City. After 24 years of marriage and four children, petitioner filed, in the RTC of Quezon City, Br. 87, a petition for nullity of marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity under Article 36 of the Family Code. In her Answer to said petition, petitioners wife alleged that it was petitioner who abandoned the conjugal home and lived with a certain woman named Milagros Salting. She then filed a criminal case for concubinage against petitioner and his paramour before the Metropolitan Trial Court of Makati, Br. 61. Petitioner, in order to forestall the issuance of a warrant for his arrest, filed a Motion to Defer Proceedings Including the Issuance of the Warrant of Arrest in the criminal case. Petitioner argued that the pendency of the civil case for declaration of nullity of his marriage posed a prejudicial question to the determination of the criminal case. Judge Alden Cervantes denied the motion, so was with a Motion for Reconsideration. Petitioner then went to the RTC of Makati, on certiorari , questioning the Orders issued by Judge Cervantes. The RTC denied the petition also a Motion for Reconsideration. Hence, this petition. ISSUE:

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Does the declaration of nullity of marriage a prejudicial question in a criminal case for concubinage? HELD: The rationale behind the principle of prejudicial question is to avoid conflicting decisions. It has two (2) essential elements: a) the civil action involves an issue similar or intimately related to the issue raised in the criminal action; and b) the resolution of such issue determines whether or not the criminal action may proceed. The pendency of the case for declaration of nullity of petitioners marriage is not a prejudicial question to the concubinage case. For a civil case to be considered prejudicial to a criminal action as to cause the suspension of the latter pending the final determination of the civil case, it must appear not only that the said civil case involves the same facts upon which the criminal prosecution would be based, but also that in the resolution of the issue or issues raised in the aforesaid civil action, the guilt or innocence of the accused would necessarily be determined. In DOMINGO vs. COURT OF APPEALS ( 226 SCRA 572) , the SC ruled that the import of Article 40 of the Family Code is that for purposes of remarriage, the only legally acceptable bases for declaring a previous marriage an absolute nullity is a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void, whereas, for purposes of other than remarriage, other evidence is acceptable. So, that in a case for concubinage, the accused, like the herein petitioner need not present a final judgment declaring his marriage void for he can adduce evidence in the criminal case of the nullity of his marriage other than proof of a final judgment declaring his marriage void for he can adduce evidence in the criminal case of the nullity of his marriage other than proof of a final judgment declaring his marriage void. With regard to petitioners argument that he could be acquitted of the charge of concubinage should his marriage be declared null and void, suffice it to state that even a subsequent pronouncement that his marriage is void from the beginning is not a defense. Analogous to this case is that of LANDICHO VS. RELOVA ( 22 SCRA 731), cited in DONATO VS. LUNA (160 SCRA 441), where the SC held that: xxx Assuming that the first marriage was null and void on the ground alleged by petitioner, that fact would not be material to the outcome of the criminal case. Parties to the marriage should not be permitted to judge for themselves its nullity, for the same must be submitted to the judgment of the competent courts and only when the nullity of the marriage is so declared can it be held as void, and so long as there is no such declaration the presumption is that the marriage exists. Therefore, he who contracts a second marriage before the judicial declaration of nullity of the first marriage assumes the risk of being prosecuted for bigamy. Thus, in the case at bar it must also be held that parties to the marriage should not be permitted to judge for themselves its nullity, for the same must be submitted to the judgment of the competent courts and only when the nullity of the marriage is so declared can it be held as void, and so long as there is no such declaration the presumption is that the marriage exists for all intents and purposes. Therefore, he who cohabits with a woman not his wife before the judicial declaration of nullity of the marriage assumes the risk of being prosecuted for concubinage. The lower court therefore, has not erred in affirming the Orders of the judge of the Metropolitan Trial Court ruling that pendency of a civil action for nullity of marriage does not pose a prejudicial question in a criminal case of concubinage DIGEST BY: JIHAN A.M. BANOCAG 35) SPOUSES ANTONIO S. PAHANG and LOLITA T. PAHANG vs. HON. AUGUSTINE A. VESTIL, Presiding Judge of Regional Trial Court- Branch 56, Mandaue City, DEPUTY SHERIFF, Regional Trial Court-Branch 56 and METROPOLITAN BANK and TRUST COMPANY G.R. No. 148595, July 12, 2004 FACTS: the petitioners, Spouses Antonio and Lolita Pahang, received a short-term loan of one million five hundred thousand pesos (P1,500,000.00) from the respondent Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company. The loan was covered by Non-Negotiable Promissory Note and was, likewise, secured by a real estate mortgage on a parcel of land covered . As the petitioners failed to pay the loan, the interest and the penalties due thereon, the respondent foreclosed the real estate mortgage extrajudicially. As a consequence, the mortgaged property was sold at public auction to the respondent bank as the highest bidder. A certificate of sale was executed by Ex-Officio Sheriff in favor of the respondent and was registered with the Register of Deeds. the respondent wrote the petitioners that the oneyear redemption period of the property would expire on January 27, 1999. Instead of redeeming the property, the petitioners filed, a complaint for

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annulment of extrajudicial sale against the respondent bank and the Sheriff. After the expiration of the one-year redemption period, the respondent consolidated its ownership over the foreclosed property. Consequently, TCT No. 44668 was issued by the Register of Deeds in its name. On July 23, 1999, the respondent filed a Petition for Writ of Possession. ISSUE: whether or not the complaint of the petitioners in Civil Case No. MAN-3454 for annulment of extrajudicial sale is a prejudicial question to the petition of the respondent bank for the issuance of a writ of possession in LRC Case No. HELD: The contentions of the petitioners have no merit. A prejudicial question is one that arises in a case the resolution of which is a logical antecedent of the issue involved therein, and the cognizance of which pertains to another tribunal. It generally comes into play in a situation where a civil action and a criminal action are both pending and there exists in the former an issue that must be preemptively resolved before the criminal action may proceed, because howsoever the issue raised in the civil action is resolved would be determinative juris et de jure of the guilt or innocence of the accused in the criminal case. The rationale behind the principle of prejudicial question is to avoid two conflicting decisions. In the present case, the complaint of the petitioners for Annulment of Extrajudicial Sale is a civil action and the respondents petition for the issuance of a writ of possession of Lot No. 3-A, Block 1, Psd-07021410, TCT No. 44668 is but an incident in the land registration case and, therefore, no prejudicial question can arise from the existence of the two actions. It bears stressing that the proceedings in a petition and/or motion for the issuance of a writ of possession, after the lapse of the statutory period for redemption, is summary in nature.The trial court is mandated to issue a writ of possession upon a finding of the lapse of the statutory period for redemption without the redemptioner having redeemed the property. It cannot be validly argued that the trial court abused its discretion when it merely complied with its ministerial duty to issue the said writ of possession. IN LIGHT OF ALL THE FOREGOING, the petition is DENIED DUE COURSE. The assailed decision of the Court of Appeals is AFFIRMED. Cost against the petitioners. SO ORDERED. DIGEST BY: JIHAN A.M. BANOCAG 36) ABACAN vs. NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY, INC G.R. No. 140777. April 8, 2005 FACTS: Two opposing factions within respondent Northwestern University, Inc. (NUI), the Castro and the Nicolas factions, seek control as the legitimate board thereof. These two factions are parties to Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Case No. 12-96-5469, which is an action filed by the Nicolas faction to nullify the election of the directors of NUI belonging to the Castro faction and SEC Case No. 12-96-5511 which is a counter-suit initiated by the Castro faction seeking the nullification of several board resolutions passed by the Nicolas faction. On December 19, 1996, SEC Hearing Officer Rolando G. Andaya, Jr., issued an Order authorizing the Castro faction and the Metropolitan Bank Laoag City branch to withdraw the amount of P2.5M from the account of NUI with said bank. Metrobank thru Petitioner Abacan, complied and released P1.4 M in favor of the Castro faction. The Nicolas faction then initiated a criminal complaint for estafa against the Castro faction as well as the petitioners herein who are officers of Metrobank, however the criminal case was later dismissed insofar as petitioners are concerned. Nicolas faction filed a suit for damages against Castro faction and petitioner on the ground that the corporate funds of NUI deposited with said bank in the sum of P1.4 M was withdrawn without the knowledge, consent or approval of NUI to the grave and serious damage and prejudice of the latter. Marieta Y. Palanca filed a motion to dismiss alleging that SEC Case No. 12-96-5469 must take precedence over the civil case since it is a logical antecedent to the issue of standing in said case. Petitioners then prayed for the dismissal of the complaint in Civil Case No. 11296-14 against them, or in the alternative, to hold in abeyance the proceedings therein until after the final determination of SEC Case No. 12-96-5469. However, NUI avers that the rule on prejudicial question finds no application between the civil complaint below and the case before the SEC as the rule presupposes the pendency of a civil action and a criminal action; and even assuming arguendo that the issues pending before the SEC bear a similarity to the cause of action below, the complaint of NUI can stand and proceed separately from the SEC case

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inasmuch as there is no identity in the reliefs prayed for. ISSUE: Whether or not there is prejudicial question in this case. RULING: Yes. Considering the rationale behind the principle of prejudicial question, being to avoid two conflicting decisions, prudence dictates that we apply the principle underlying the doctrine to the case at bar. A prejudicial question is that which arises in a case, the resolution of which is a logical antecedent of the issue involved therein and the cognizance of which pertains to another tribunal. The prejudicial question must be determinative of the case before the court but the jurisdiction to try and resolve it must be lodged in another court or tribunal. In the case at bar, the question of which between the Castro and the Nicolas factions are the de jure board of directors of NUI is lodged before the SEC. The complaint before the RTC of Laoag meanwhile alleges that petitioners, together with their co-defendants, comprised of the Castro faction, wrongfully withdrew the amount of P1.4 M from the account of NUI with Metrobank. Moreover, whether or not Roy Nicolas of the Nicolas faction is a duly elected member of the Board of NUI and thus with capacity to institute the herein complaint in behalf of the NUI depends on the findings of the SEC in the case pending before it. It would finally determine whether Castro, et al. legally withdrew the subject amount from the bank and whether Nicolas lawfully initiated the complaint in behalf of herein respondent NUI. It is petitioners claim, and we agree, that the presence or absence of their liability for allowing the withdrawal of P1.4 M from the account of NUI with Metrobank in favor of the Castro faction is reliant on the findings of the SEC as to which of the two factions is the de jure board. Since the determination of the SEC as to which of the two factions is the de jure board of NUI is crucial to the resolution of the case before the RTC. Hence, the trial court should suspend its proceedings until the SEC comes out with its findings.

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IV. CIVIL PERSONALITY 37) Antonio Gelus v. Court of Appeals No. L-16439. July 20, 1961 Doctrine: Since an action for pecuniary damages on account of personal injury or death pertains primarily to the one injured, it is easy to see that if no action for such damages could be instituted on behalf of the unborn child on account of the injuries it received, no such right of action could deliberately accrue to its parents or heirs. In fact, even if a cause of action did accrue on behalf of the unborn child, the same was extinguished by its pre-natal death, since no transmission to anyone can take place from one that lacked of juridical personality under Article 40 of the Civil Code, which expressly limits such provisional personality by imposing the condition that the child should be subsequently alive. Reyes, JBL, J. FACTS: Nita Villanueva came to know the petitioner, a physician, for the first time in 1948 through her aunt Paula Yambot. The said physician made three abortions on Villanueva on the following circumstances: (1) In 1950, when she became pregnant by her present husband, Oscar Lazo, before they were legally married, and she deisred to conceal her pregnancy from her parents; (2) after their marriage, her second pregnancy proved to be inconvenient as she was then working for the COMELEC; and lastly (3) on February 21, 1955 she was aborted of a 2-month old fetus for the amount of P50.00. Upon knowing of the last abortion, Lazo filed a complaint for damages against Geluz, claiming that he did not know of, nor gave his consent, to the abortion. The trial court rendered judgment in favor of Lazo and against Geluz, ordering the latter to pay P3,000.00 as damages, P700.00 attorney's fees and the costs of the suit. On appeal, the Court of Appeals sustained the award. ISSUE: W/N the award of damages was proper. HELD: NO. the Court of Appeals and the trial court predicated the award of damages in the sum of P3,000.06 upon the provisions of the initial paragraph of Article 2206 of the Civil Code of the Philippines. This the Court believes to be error, for the said article, in fixing a minimum award of P3,000.00 for the death of a person, does not cover the case of an unborn foetus that is not endowed with personality; being incapable of having rights and obligations. Since an action for pecuniary damages on account of personal injury or death pertains primarily to the one injured, it is easy to see that if no action for such damages could be instituted on behalf of the unborn child on account of the injuries it received, no such right of action could deliberately accrue to its parents or heirs. In fact, even if a cause of action did accrue on behalf of the unborn child, the same was extinguished by its pre-natal death, since no transmission to anyone can take place from one that lacked of juridical personality under Article 40 of the Civil Code, which expressly limits such provisional personality by imposing the condition that the child should be subsequently alive. Both the trial court and the Court of Appeals have not found any basis for an award of moral damages, evidently because of Lazos indifference to the previous abortions of his wife, also caused by the petitioner herein, clearly indicates that he was unconcerned with the frustration of his parental hopes and affections. The lower court expressly found, and the majority opinion of the Court of Appeals did not contradict it, that the appellee Lazo was aware of the second abortion; and the probabilities are that he was likewise aware of the first. Yet despite the suspicious repetition of the event, he appeared to have taken no steps to investigate or pinpoint the causes thereof, and secure the punishment of the responsible practitioner. Even after learning of the third abortion, the appellee does not seem to have taken interest in the administrative and criminal cases against the appellant. His only concern appears to have been directed at obtaining from the doctor a large money payment, since he sued for P50,000.00 damages and P3,000.00 attorney's fees, an "indemnity" claim that, under the circumstances of record, was clearly exaggerated. It is unquestionable that the appellant's act in provoking the abortion of appellee's wife, without medical necessity to warrant it, was a criminal and morally reprehensible act, that can not be too severely condemned; and the consent of the woman or that of her husband does not excuse it. But the immorality or illegality of the act does not justify an award of damage that, under the circumstances on record, have no factual or legal basis.

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V. CITIZENSHIP 38) Mercado vs. Manzano G.R. No. 135083. May 26, 1999 Doctrine: Dual citizenship is different from dual allegiance. The former arises when, as a result of the concurrent application of the different laws of two or more states, a person is simultaneously considered a national by the said states. Dual allegiance, on the other hand, refers to the situation in which a person simultaneously owes, by some positive act, loyalty to two or more states. While dual citizenship is involuntary, dual allegiance is the result of an individuals volition. FACTS: Petitioner Ernesto S. Mercado and private respondent Eduardo B. Manzano were candidates for vice mayor of the City of Makati in the May 11, 1998 elections. The other one was Gabriel V. Daza III. The proclamation of private respondent was suspended in view of a pending petition for disqualification filed by a certain Ernesto Mamaril who alleged that private respondent was not a citizen of the Philippines but of the United States. COMELEC granted the petition of Mamaril and ordered the cancellation of the certificate of candidacy of private respondent on the ground that he is a dual citizen and, under 40(d) of the Local Government Code, persons with dual citizenship are disqualified from running for any elective position. The respondent admitted that he is registered as a foreigner with the Bureau of Immigration under Alien Certificate of Registration No. B-31632 and alleged that he is a Filipino citizen because he was born in 1955 of a Filipino father and a Filipino mother. He was born in the United States, San Francisco, California, on September 14, 1955, and is considered an American citizen under US Laws. But notwithstanding his registration as an American citizen, he did not lose his Filipino citizenship. It would appear that respondent Manzano is both a Filipino and a US citizen. In other words, he holds dual citizenship. ISSUE: Whether or not Private Respondent Manzano is disqualified from the position for which he filed his certificate of candidacy. HELD: NO. He was also a natural born Filipino citizen by operation of the 1935 Philippine Constitution, as his father and mother were Filipinos at the time of his birth. At the age of six (6), his parents brought him to the Philippines using an American passport as travel document. His parents also registered him as an alien with the Philippine Bureau of Immigration. He was issued an alien certificate of registration. This, however, did not result in the loss of his Philippine citizenship, as he did not renounce Philippine citizenship and did not take an oath of allegiance to the United States. It is an undisputed fact that when respondent attained the age of majority, he registered himself as a voter, and voted in the elections of 1992, 1995 and 1998, which effectively renounced his US citizenship under American law. Under Philippine law, he no longer had U.S. citizenship. Dual citizenship is different from dual allegiance. The former arises when, as a result of the concurrent application of the different laws of two or more states, a person is simultaneously considered a national by the said states. Dual allegiance, on the other hand, refers to the situation in which a person simultaneously owes, by some positive act, loyalty to two or more states. While dual citizenship is involuntary, dual allegiance is the result of an individuals volition. The phrase dual citizenship in R.A. No. 7160, 40(d) and in R.A. No. 7854, 20 must be understood as referring to dual allegiance. Consequently, persons with mere dual citizenship do not fall under this disqualification. Unlike those with dual allegiance, who must, therefore, be subject to strict process with respect to the termination of their status, for candidates with dual citizenship, it should suffice if, upon the filing of their certificates of candidacy, they elect Philippine citizenship to terminate their status as persons with dual citizenship considering that their condition is the unavoidable consequence of conflicting laws of different states. The filing of such certificate of candidacy sufficed to renounce his American citizenship, effectively removing any disqualification he might have as a dual citizen. By declaring in his certificate of candidacy that he is a Filipino citizen; that he is not a permanent resident or immigrant of another country; that he will defend and support the Constitution of the Philippines and bear true faith and allegiance thereto and that he does so without mental reservation, private respondent has, as far as the laws of this country are concerned, effectively repudiated his American citizenship and anything which he may have said before as a dual citizen.Petition dismissed

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39) Republic v. Chule Lim G.R. NO. 153883, January 13, 2004 Facts: Chule Lim claimes that she was born on October 29, 1954 in Buru-an, Iligan City. Her birth was registered in Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte but the Municipal Civil Registrar of Kauswagan transferred her record of birth to Iligan City. She alleged that both her Kauswagan and Iligan City records of birth have four erroneous entries, and prays that they be corrected. During the hearing, respondent testified thus: First, she claims that her surname "Yu" was misspelled as "Yo". She has been using "Yu" in all her school records and in her marriage certificate. 2 She presented a clearance from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI)3 to further show the consistency in her use of the surname "Yu". Second, she claims that her fathers name in her birth record was written as "Yo Diu To (Co Tian)" when it should have been "Yu Dio To (Co Tian)." Third, her nationality was entered as Chinese when it should have been Filipino considering that her father and mother never got married. Only her deceased father was Chinese, while her mother is Filipina. She claims that her being a registered voter attests to the fact that she is a Filipino citizen. Finally, it was erroneously indicated in her birth certificate that she was a legitimate child when she should have been described as illegitimate considering that her parents were never married. Placida Anto, respondents mother, testified that she is a Filipino citizen as her parents were both Filipinos from Camiguin. She added that she and her daughters father were never married because the latter had a prior subsisting marriage contracted in China. In this connection, respondent presented a certification attested by officials of the local civil registries of Iligan City and Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte that there is no record of marriage between Placida Anto and Yu Dio To from 1948 to the present. The Republic, through the City Prosecutor of Iligan City, did not present any evidence although it actively participated in the proceedings by attending hearings and cross-examining respondent and her witnesses. On February 22, 2000, the trial court granted respondents petition and rendered judgment. Issue: whether or not lims citizenship should be changed from Chinese to Filipino? Held: YES. To digress, it is just as well that the Republic did not cite as error respondents recourse to Rule 108 of the Rules of Court to effect what indisputably are substantial corrections and changes in entries in the civil register. To clarify, Rule 108 of the Revised Rules of Court provides the procedure for cancellation or correction of entries in the civil registry. The proceedings under said rule may either be summary or adversary in nature. If the correction sought to be made in the civil register is clerical, then the procedure to be adopted is summary. If the rectification affects the civil status, citizenship or nationality of a party, it is deemed substantial, and the procedure to be adopted is adversary. This is our ruling in Republic v. Valencia7 where we held that even substantial errors in a civil registry may be corrected and the true facts established under Rule 108 provided the parties aggrieved by the error avail themselves of the appropriate adversary proceeding. An appropriate adversary suit or proceeding is one where the trial court has conducted proceedings where all relevant facts have been fully and properly developed, where opposing counsel have been given opportunity to demolish the opposite partys case, and where the evidence has been thoroughly weighed and considered.8 As likewise observed by the Court of Appeals, we take it that the Republics failure to cite this error amounts to a recognition that this case properly falls under Rule 108 of the Revised Rules of Court considering that the proceeding can be appropriately classified as adversarial. Instead, in its first assignment of error, the Republic avers that respondent did not comply with the constitutional requirement of electing Filipino citizenship when she reached the age of majority. It cites Article IV, Section 1(3) of the 1935 Constitution, which provides that the citizenship of a legitimate child born of a Filipino mother and an alien father followed the citizenship of the father, unless, upon reaching the age of majority, the child elected Philippine citizenship.9 Likewise, the Republic invokes the provision in Section 1 of Commonwealth Act No. 625, that legitimate children born of Filipino mothers may elect Philippine citizenship by expressing such intention "in a statement to be signed and sworn to by the party concerned before any officer authorized to administer oaths, and shall be filed with the nearest civil registry. The said party shall accompany the aforesaid statement with the oath of allegiance to the Constitution and the Government of the Philippines."10 Plainly, the above constitutional and statutory requirements of electing Filipino citizenship apply only to legitimate children. These do not apply in the

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case of respondent who was concededly an illegitimate child, considering that her Chinese father and Filipino mother were never married. As such, she was not required to comply with said constitutional and statutory requirements to become a Filipino citizen. By being an illegitimate child of a Filipino mother, respondent automatically became a Filipino upon birth. Stated differently, she is a Filipino since birth without having to elect Filipino citizenship when she reached the age of majority. In Ching, Re: Application for Admission to the Bar, 11 citing In re Florencio Mallare,12 we held: Esteban Mallare, natural child of Ana Mallare, a Filipina, is therefore himself a Filipino, and no other act would be necessary to confer on him all the rights and privileges attached to Philippine citizenship (U.S. vs. Ong Tianse, 29 Phil. 332; Santos Co vs. Government of the Philippine Islands, 42 Phil. 543; Serra vs. Republic, L-4223, May 12, 1952; Sy Quimsuan vs. Republic , L-4693, Feb. 16, 1953; Pitallano vs. Republic, L-5111, June 28, 1954). Neither could any act be taken on the erroneous belief that he is a non-Filipino divest him of the citizenship privileges to which he is rightfully entitled.13 This notwithstanding, the records show that respondent elected Filipino citizenship when she reached the age of majority. She registered as a voter in Misamis Oriental when she was 18 years old.14 The exercise of the right of suffrage and the participation in election exercises constitute a positive act of election of Philippine citizenship.15 In its second assignment of error, the Republic assails the Court of Appeals decision in allowing respondent to use her fathers surname despite its finding that she is illegitimate. The Republics submission is misleading. The Court of Appeals did not allow respondent to use her fathers surname. What it did allow was the correction of her fathers misspelled surname which she has been using ever since she can remember. In this regard, respondent does not need a court pronouncement for her to use her fathers surname. Court of Appeals is was correct when it held: Firstly, Petitioner-appellee is now 47 years old. To bar her at this time from using her fathers surname which she has used for four decades without any known objection from anybody, would only sow confusion. Concededly, one of the reasons allowed for changing ones name or surname is to avoid confusion. Secondly, under Sec. 1 of Commonwealth Act No. 142, the law regulating the use of aliases, a person is allowed to use a name "by which he has been known since childhood."

While judicial authority is required for a change of name or surname,18 there is no such requirement for the continued use of a surname which a person has already been using since childhood.19 The doctrine that disallows such change of name as would give the false impression of family relationship remains valid but only to the extent that the proposed change of name would in great probability cause prejudice or future mischief to the family whose surname it is that is involved or to the community in general.20 In this case, the Republic has not shown that the Yu family in China would probably be prejudiced or be the object of future mischief. In respondents case, the change in the surname that she has been using for 40 years would even avoid confusion to her community in general.

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VI. MARRIAGE 40) Balogbog vs. CA G.R. No. 83598 March 7, 1997 FACTS: Petitioners Leoncia and Gaudioso Balogbog are the children of Basilio Balogbog and Genoveva Arnibal who died intestate in 1951 and 1961, respectively. They had an older brother, Gavino, but he died in 1935, predeceasing their parents. In 1968, private respondents Ramonito and Generoso Balogbog brought an action for partition and accounting against petitioners, claiming that they were the legitimate children of Gavino by Catalina Ubas and that, as such, they were entitled to the one-third share of Gavino in the estate of their grandparents. In their answer, petitioners denied knowing private respondents. They alleged that their brother Gavino died single and without issue in their parents residence at Asturias, Cebu. To support their claim, the petitioners obtained a certificate from the Local Civil Registrar of Asturias to the effect that that office did not have a record of the names of Gavino and Catalina. The certificate was prepared by Assistant Municipal Treasurer Juan Maranga, who testified that there was no record of the marriage of Gavino and Catalina in the Book of Marriages. On the other hand, the private respondents presented several pieces of testimonial evidence to bolster their claim. ISSUE: Whose claim, as supported by their respective pieces of evidence, will prevail? HELD: The claim of the private respondents will prevail. Under the Rules of Court, the presumption is that a man and a woman conducting themselves as husband and wife are legally married. This presumption may be rebutted only by cogent proof to the contrary. In this case, petitioners claim that the pieces of evidence presented by private respondents was belied by the production of the Book of Marriages by the assistant municipal treasurer of Asturias. Petitioners argue that this book does not contain any entry pertaining to the alleged marriage of private respondents parents. This contention has no merit. In Pugeda v. Trias, the defendants, who questioned the marriage of the plaintiffs, produced a photostatic copy of the record of marriages of the Municipality of Rosario, Cavite for the month of January, 1916, to show that there was no record of the alleged marriage. Nonetheless, evidence consisting of the testimonies of witnesses was held competent to prove the marriage. Indeed, although a marriage contract is considered primary evidence of marriage, the failure to present it is not proof that no marriage took place. Other evidence may be presented to prove marriage. Here, private respondents proved, through testimonial evidence, that Gavino and Catalina were married in 1929; that they had three children, one of whom died in infancy; that their marriage subsisted until 1935 when Gavino died; and that their children, private respondents, were recognized by Gavinos family and by the public as the legitimate children of Gavino. Neither is there merit in the argument of the petitioners that the existence of the marriage cannot be presumed because there was no evidence showing in particular that Gavino and Catalina, in the presence of two witnesses, declared that they were taking each other as husband and wife. An exchange of vows can be presumed to have been made from the testimonies of the witnesses who state that a wedding took place, since the very purpose for having a wedding is to exchange vows of marital commitment. It would indeed be unusual to have a wedding without an exchange of vows and quite unnatural for people not to notice its absence. The law favors the validity of marriage, because the State is interested in the preservation of the family and the sanctity of the family is a matter of constitutional concern. 41) VDA. De Jacob V. CA 312 SCRA 772 FACTS: Plaintiff-appellant [petitioner herein] claimed to be the surviving spouse of deceased Dr. Alfredo E. Jacob and was appointed Special Administratix for the various estates of the deceased by virtue of a reconstructed Marriage Contract between herself and the deceased. Defendant-appellee on the other hand, claimed to be the legally-adopted son of Alfredo. In support of his claim, he presented an Order dated 18 July 1961 issued by then Presiding Judge Jose L. Moya, CFI, Camarines Sur, granting the petition for adoption filed by deceased Alfredo in favor of Pedro Pilapil. During the proceeding for the settlement of the estate of the deceased Alfredo in Case No. T-46 (entitled "Tomasa vda. de Jacob v. Jose Centenera, et al) herein defendant-appellee Pedro sought to intervene therein claiming his share of the

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deceaseds estate as Alfredo's adopted son and as his sole surviving heir. Pedro questioned the validity of the marriage between appellant Tomasa and his adoptive father Alfredo. Appellant Tomasa opposed the Motion for Intervention and filed a complaint for injunction with damages (Civil Case No. T-83) questioning appellee's claim as the legal heir of Alfredo. appellant claims that the marriage between her and Alfredo was solemnized by one Msgr. Florencio C. Yllana, CBCP, Intramuros, Manila sometime in 1975. She could not however present the original copy of the Marriage Contract stating that the original document was lost when Msgr. Yllana allegedly gave it to Mr. Jose Centenera for registration. In lieu of the original, Tomasa presented as secondary evidence a reconstructed Marriage Contract issued in 1978. No copy of the Marriage Contract was sent to the local civil registrar by the solemnizing officer thus giving the implication that there was no copy of the marriage contract sent to, nor a record existing in the civil registry of Manila; In signing the Marriage Contract, the late Alfredo Jacob merely placed his "thumbmark" on said contract purportedly on 16 September 1975 (date of the marriage). However, on a Sworn Affidavit executed between appellant Tomasa and Alfredo a day before the alleged date of marriage or on 15 September 1975 attesting that both of them lived together as husband and wife for five (5) years, Alfredo [af]fixed his customary signature. Thus the trial court concluded that the "thumbmark" was logically "not genuine". In other words, not of Alfredo Jacobs; Issue: Whether the marriage between the plaintiffappellant and deceased Alfredo Jacob was valid? Held: Doctrinally, a void marriage may be subjected to collateral attack, while a voidable one may be assailed only in a direct proceeding.8 Aware of this fundamental distinction, Respondent Pilapil contends that the marriage between Dr. Alfredo Jacob and petitioner was void ab initio, because there was neither a marriage license nor a marriage ceremony.9 We cannot sustain this contention. To start with, Respondent Pedro Pilapil argues that the marriage was void because the parties had no marriage license. This argument is misplaced, because it has been established that Dr. Jacob and petitioner lived together as husband and wife for at least five years.10 An affidavit to this effect was executed by Dr. Jacob and petitioner. 11 Clearly then, the marriage was exceptional in character and did not require a marriage license under Article 76 of the Civil Code.12 The Civil Code governs this case, because the questioned marriage and the assailed adoption took place prior the effectivity of the Family Code. "It is settled that if the original writing has been lost or destroyed or cannot be produced in court, upon proof of its execution and loss or destruction, or unavailability, its contents may be proved by a copy or a recital of its contents in some authentic document, or by recollection of witnesses." 13 Upon a showing that the document was duly executed and subsequently lost, without any bad faith on the part of the offeror, secondary evidence may be adduced to prove its contents.14 The trial court and the Court of Appeals committed reversible error when they (1) excluded the testimonies of petitioner, Adela Pilapil and Msgr. Florencio Yllana and (2) disregarded the following: (a) photographs of the wedding ceremony; (b) documentary evidence, such as the letter of Monsignor Yllana stating that he had solemnized the marriage between Dr. Jacob and petitioner, informed the Archbishop of Manila that the wedding had not been recorded in the Book of Marriages, and at the same time requested the list of parties to the marriage; (c) the subsequent authorization issued by the Archbishop through his vicar general and chancellor, Msgr. Benjamin L. Marino ordaining that the union between Dr. Jacob and petitioner be reflected through a corresponding entry in the Book of Marriages; and (d) the Affidavit of Monsignor Yllana stating the circumstances of the loss of the marriage certificate. It should be stressed that the due execution and the loss of the marriage contract, both constituting the conditio sine qua non for the introduction of secondary evidence of its contents, were shown by the very evidence they have disregarded. They have thus confused the evidence to show due execution and loss as "secondary" evidence of the marriage. In Hernaez v. Mcgrath,15 the Court clarified this misconception thus: . . . [T]he court below was entirely mistaken in holding that parol evidence of the execution of the instrument was barred. The court confounded the execution and the contents of the document . It is the contents, . . . which may not be prove[n] by secondary evidence when the instrument itself is accessible. Proofs of the execution are not dependent on the existence or non-existence of the document, and, as a matter of fact, such proofs precede proofs of the contents: due execution, besides the loss, has to be shown as foundation for the introduction of secondary evidence of the

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contents. The Court of Appeals, as well as the trial court, tried to justify its stand on this issue by relying on Lim Tanhu v. Ramolete.16 But even there, we said that "marriage may be prove[n] by other competent evidence."17 Truly, the execution of a document may be proven by the parties themselves, by the swearing officer, by witnesses who saw and recognized the signatures of the parties; or even by those to whom the parties have previously narrated the execution thereof.18 The Court has also held that "[t]he loss may be shown by any person who [knows] the fact of its loss, or by any one who ha[s] made, in the judgment of the court, a sufficient examination in the place or places where the document or papers of similar character are usually kept by the person in whose custody the document lost was, and has been unable to find it; or who has made any other investigation which is sufficient to satisfy the court that the instrument [has] indeed [been] lost." 19 In the present case, due execution was established by the testimonies of Adela Pilapil, who was present during the marriage ceremony, and of petitioner herself as a party to the event. The subsequent loss was shown by the testimony and the affidavit of the officiating priest, Monsignor Yllana, as well as by petitioner's own declaration in court. These are relevant, competent and admissible evidence. Since the due execution and the loss of the marriage contract were clearly shown by the evidence presented, secondary evidence testimonial and documentary may be admitted to prove the fact of marriage. The trial court pointed out that on the face of the reconstructed marriage contract were certain irregularities suggesting that it had fraudulently been obtained.20 Even if we were to agree with the trial court and to disregard the reconstructed marriage contract, we must emphasize that this certificate is not the only proof of the union between Dr. Jacob and petitioner. Respondent Pedro Pilapil misplaces emphasis on the absence of an entry pertaining to 1975 in the Books of Marriage of the Local Civil Registrar of Manila and in the National Census and Statistics Office (NCSO).26 He finds it quite "bizarre" for petitioner to have waited three years before registering their marriage.27 On both counts, he proceeds from the wrong premise. In the first place, failure to send a copy of a marriage certificate for record purposes does not invalidate the marriage. 28 In the second place, it was not the petitioners duty to send a copy of the marriage certificate to the civil registrar. Instead, this charge fell upon the solemnizing officer.29 The basis of human society throughout the civilized world is . . . of marriage. Marriage in this jurisdiction is not only a civil contract, but it is a new relation, an institution in the maintenance of which the public is deeply interested. Consequently, every intendment of the law leans toward legalizing matrimony. Persons dwelling together in apparent matrimony are presumed, in the absence of any counterpresumption or evidence special to the case, to be in fact married. The reason is that such is the common order of society, and if the parties were not what they thus hold themselves out as being, they would be living in the constant violation of decency and of law. A presumption established by our Code of Civil Procedure is "that a man and woman deporting themselves as husband and wife have entered into a lawful contract of marriage." Semper praesumitur pro matrimonio Always presume marriage. This jurisprudential attitude31 towards marriage is based on the prima facie presumption that a man and a woman deporting themselves as husband and wife have entered into a lawful contract of marriage.32 Given the undisputed, even accepted,33 fact that Dr. Jacob and petitioner lived together as husband and wife,34 we find that the presumption of marriage was not rebutted in this case. 42) Republic Of The Philippines v. CA G.R. No. 92326 January 24, 1992 Facts: On February 2, 1988, Zenaida Corteza Bobiles filed a petition to adopt Jason Condat, then six (6) years old and who had been living with her family since he was four (4) months old, before the Regional Trial Court of Legaspi City. The petition for adoption was filed by private respondent Zenaida C. Bobiles on February 2, 1988, when the law applicable was Presidential Decree No. 603, the Child and Youth Welfare Code. Under said code, a petition for adoption may be filed by either of the spouses or by both of them. However, after the trial court rendered its decision and while the case was pending on appeal in the Court of Appeals, Executive Order No. 209, the Family Code, took effect on August 3, 1988. Under the said new law, joint adoption by husband and wife is mandatory. Petitioner contends that the petition for adoption should be dismissed outright for it was filed solely by private respondent without joining her husband, in violation of Article 185 of the Family Code which

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requires joint adoption by the spouses. It argues that the Family Code must be applied retroactively to the petition filed by Mrs. Bobiles, as the latter did not acquire a vested right to adopt Jason Condat by the mere filing of her petition for adoption. Issues: 1.) Can the Family Code be applied retroactively to the petition for adoption filed by Zenaida C. Bobiles and; 2.) Granting that the FC should be applied retroactively should the adoption in favor of private respondent only, her husband not being a petitioner. Held: 1.)Article 246 of the Family Code provides for retroactive effect of appropriate relevant provisions thereof, subject to the qualification that such retrospective application will not prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights in accordance with the Civil Code or other laws. A vested right is one whose existence, effectivity and extent does not depend upon events foreign to the will of the holder. The term expresses the concept of present fixed interest which in right reason and natural justice should be protected against arbitrary State action, or an innately just and imperative right which enlightened free society, sensitive to inherent and irrefragable individual rights, cannot deny. Vested rights include not only legal or equitable title to the enforcement of a demand, but also an exemption from new obligations created after the right has vested. Under the Child and Youth Welfare Code, private respondent had the right to file a petition for adoption by herself, without joining her husband therein. When Mrs. Bobiles filed her petition, she was exercising her explicit and unconditional right under said law. Upon her filing thereof, her right to file such petition alone and to have the same proceed to final adjudication, in accordance with the law in force at the time, was already vested and cannot be prejudiced or impaired by the enactment of a new law. When private respondent filed her petition in Special Proceeding No. 1386, the trial court acquired jurisdiction thereover in accordance with the governing law. Jurisdiction being a matter of substantive law, the established rule is that the jurisdiction of the court is determined by the statute in force at the time of the commencement of the action. We do not find in the present case such facts as would constitute it as an exception to the rule. 2.)Petitioner argues that, even assuming that the Family Code should not apply retroactively, the Court of Appeals should have modified the trial court's decision by granting the adoption in favor of private respondent Zenaida C. Bobiles only, her husband not being a petitioner. We do not consider this as a tenable position and, accordingly, reject the same. Although Dioscoro Bobiles was not named as one of the petitioners in the petition for adoption filed by his wife, his affidavit of consent, attached to the petition as Annex "B" and expressly made an integral part thereof, shows that he himself actually joined his wife in adopting the child. The pertinent parts of his written consent and the foregoing declarations, and his subsequent confirmatory testimony in open court, are sufficient to make him a co-petitioner. Under the circumstances then obtaining, and by reason of his foreign residence, he must have yielded to the legal advice that an affidavit of consent on his part sufficed to make him a party to the petition. This is evident from the text of his affidavit. Punctiliousness in language and pedantry in the formal requirements should yield to and be eschewed in the higher considerations of substantial justice. The future of an innocent child must not be compromised by arbitrary insistence of rigid adherence to procedural rules on the form of pleadings. 43) SILVERIO vs. REPUBLIC G.R. No. 174689, October 22 2009 FACTS Petitioner Rommel Jacinto Dantes Silverio filed a petition for the change of his first name and sex in his birth certificate in the Regional Trial Court of Manila. The petition impleaded the civil registrar of Manila as respondent. Petitioner alleged in his petition that he was born in the City of Manila to the spouses Melecio Petines Silverio and Anita Aquino Dantes on April 4, 1962. His name was registered as "Rommel Jacinto Dantes Silverio" in his certificate of live birth (birth certificate). His sex was registered as "male." He further alleged that he is a male transsexual, that is, "anatomically male but feels, thinks and acts as a female" and that he had always identified himself with girls since childhood. Feeling trapped in a mans body, he consulted several doctors in the United States. He underwent psychological examination, hormone treatment and breast augmentation. His attempts to transform himself to a "woman" culminated on January 27, 2001 when he underwent sex reassignment surgery in Bangkok, Thailand. He was thereafter examined

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by Dr. Marcelino Reysio-Cruz, Jr., a plastic and reconstruction surgeon in the Philippines, who issued a medical certificate attesting that he (petitioner) had in fact undergone the procedure. From then on, petitioner lived as a female and was in fact engaged to be married. He then sought to have his name in his birth certificate changed from "Rommel Jacinto" to "Mely," and his sex from "male" to "female." On the scheduled initial hearing, jurisdictional requirements were established. No opposition to the petition was made. During trial, petitioner testified for himself. He also presented Dr. Reysio-Cruz, Jr. and his American fianc, Richard P. Edel, as witnesses. On June 4, 2003, the trial court rendered a decision in favor of petitioner. Its relevant portions read: Petitioner filed the present petition not to evade any law or judgment or any infraction thereof or for any unlawful motive but solely for the purpose of making his birth records compatible with his present sex. Firstly, the court is of the opinion that granting the petition would be more in consonance with the principles of justice and equity. With his sexual [re-assignment], petitioner, who has always felt, thought and acted like a woman, now possesses the physique of a female. Petitioners misfortune to be trapped in a mans body is not his own doing and should not be in any way taken against him. Likewise, the court believes that no harm, injury or prejudice will be caused to anybody or the community in granting the petition. On the contrary, granting the petition would bring the muchawaited happiness on the part of the petitioner and her [fianc] and the realization of their dreams. Finally, no evidence was presented to show any cause or ground to deny the present petition despite due notice and publication thereof. Even the State, through the [OSG] has not seen fit to interpose any opposition. ISSUE Whether or not sex reassignment is a ground for change of entry in the birth certificate? HELD No, there is no law legally recognizing sex reassignment and its effect. The sex of a person is determined at birth, visually done by the birth attendant (the physician or midwife) by examining the genitals of the infant Civil Register Law (Act 3753). If the determination of a persons sex made at the time of his or her birth is not attendant by error, the same is immutable and may not be changed by reason of a sex reassignment surgery. 44) SY vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. 127263. April 12, 2000 FACTS: Petitioner and respondent contracted marriage on November 15, 1973. both were then 22 years old. Their union was blessed with two children. Respondent left their conjugal dwelling, since the they lived separately. Petitioner filed a petition for legal separation. Judgment was rendered dissolving their conjugal partnership of gains and approving a regime of separation of properties based on the Memorandum of Agreement executed by the spouse. The trial court granted custody of the children to Filipina. Petitioner filed a criminal action for attempted parricide against her husband, which RTC convicted him for lesser offense of slight physical injuries. Petitioner filed a petition for the declaration of absolute nullity of her marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity. RTC denied. CA affirmed. The petitioner for the first time on appeal, the issue with regard to the absence of marriage license. ISSUE: Whether or not the marriage is valid? HELD: No. The marriage is not valid on the ground that there is no marriage license. Although, the petitioner raises the issue for the first time on appeal the issue on lack of marriage license. The petitioner states that though she did not categorically state her petition for annulment of marriage before the trial court that the inconguinoty in the dates of the marriage license and the celebration of the marriage itself would lead to the conclusion that her marriage to respondent was void from the beginning, she pointed out that these critical dates were contained in the documents she submitted before the Court. The marriage license was issued one year after the ceremony took place. Hence the marriage was celebrated without the marriage license. Petition granted. 45) SEVILLA vs. CARDENAS G.R. No. 167684. July 31, 2006. FACTS: Herein petitioner, Jaime Sevilla and respondent Carmelita Cardenas were allegedly married without a valid marriage license. The former contended that

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his marriage with the latter was contracted through machinations, duress and intimidation employed upon him by Carmelita N. Cardenas and the latter's father, retired Colonel Jose Cardenas of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. That they never applied or obtained a marriage license for their supposed marriage, thus no marriage license was presented to the solemnizing officer. In support for his contention, petitioner further argued that although marriage license no. 2770792 allegedly issued in San Juan, Rizal on May 19, 1969 was indicated in the marriage contract, the same was fictitious for he never applied for any marriage license, Upon verifications made by him through his lawyer, Atty. Jose M. Abola, with the Civil Registry of San Juan, a Certification was issued by Rafael D. Aliscad, Jr., Local Civil Registrar of San Juan, that "no marriage license no. 2770792 was ever issued by said office." However, Perlita Mercader, Registration Officer III of the Local Registry of San Juan, identified the Certificates issued by Rafael Aliscad, Jr., the Local Civil Registrar, and testified that their office failed to locate the book wherein marriage license no. 2770792 may have been registered. ISSUE: Whether or not the marriage is void for lack of a valid marriage license? HELD: No. It has been held by the Court that the certificates issued by the Local Civil Registrar were not sufficient as to invalidate the marriage license no. 2770792 which had been secured by the parties. It could be easily implied from the said statement that the Office of the Local Civil Registrar could not exert its best efforts to locate and determine the existence of Marriage License No. 2770792 due to its "loaded work and that they failed to locate the book in which the marriage license was entered. Likewise, both certifications failed to state with absolute certainty whether or not such license was issued. This implication is confirmed in the testimony of the representative from the Office of the Local Civil Registrar of San Juan, Ms. Perlita Mercader, who stated that they cannot locate the logbook due to the fact that the person in charge of the said logbook had already retired. Further, the testimony of the said person was not presented in evidence. It does not appear on record that the former custodian of the logbook was deceased or missing, or that his testimony could not be secured. This belies the claim that all efforts to locate the logbook or prove the material contents therein, had been exerted. It is required that the custodian of the document is authorize to certify that despite diligent search, a particular document does not exist in his office or that a particular entry of a specified tenor was not to be found in a register. As custodians of public documents, civil registrars are public officers charged with the duty, inter alia, of maintaining a register book where they are required to enter all applications for marriage licenses, including the names of the applicants, the date the marriage license was issued and such other relevant data. 46) MALLION vs. EDITHA ALCANTARA G.R. No. 141528. October 31, 2006 FACTS: On October 24, 1995, petitioner Oscar P. Mallion filed a petition with the RTC, Branch 29, of San Pablo City seeking a declaration of nullity of his marriage to respondent Editha Alcantara under Article 36 of the Family Code, citing respondent's alleged psychological incapacity. After trial on the merits, the RTC denied the petition in a decision dated November 11, 1997 upon the finding that petitioner "failed to adduce preponderant evidence to warrant the grant of the relief he is seeking." The appeal filed with the Court of Appeals was likewise dismissed for failure of petitioner to pay the docket and other lawful fees within the reglementary period. After the decision in Civil Case No. SP 4341-95 attained finality, petitioner filed on July 12, 1999 another petition for declaration of nullity of marriage with the RTC of San Pablo City, this time alleging that his marriage with respondent was null and void due to the fact that it was celebrated without a valid marriage license. For her part, respondent filed an answer with a motion to dismiss, praying for the dismissal of the petition on the ground of res judicata and forum shopping. In an order dated October 8, 1999, the RTC granted respondent's motion to dismiss. Petitioner's motion for reconsideration was also denied. Petitioner argues that while the relief prayed for in the two cases was the same, that is, the declaration of nullity of his marriage to respondent, the cause of action in the earlier case was distinct and separate from the cause of action in the present case because the operative facts upon which they were

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based as well as the evidence required to sustain either were different. Because there is no identity as to the cause of action, petitioner claims that res judicata does not lie to bar the second petition. In this connection, petitioner maintains that there was no violation of the rule on forum shopping or of the rule which proscribes the splitting of a cause of action. On the other hand, respondent, in her comment counters that while the present suit is anchored on a different ground, it still involves the same issue raised in Civil Case No. SP 4341-95, that is, the validity of petitioner and respondent's marriage, and prays for the same remedy, that is, the declaration of nullity of their marriage. Respondent thus contends that petitioner violated the rule on forum shopping. Moreover, respondent asserts that petitioner violated the rule on multiplicity of suits as the ground he cites in this petition could have been raised during the trial in Civil Case No. SP 4341-95. ISSUE: The issue before this Court is one of first impression. Should the matter of the invalidity of a marriage due to the absence of an essential requisite prescribed by Article 4 of the Family Code be raised in the same proceeding where the marriage is being impugned on the ground of a party's psychological incapacity under Article 36 of the Family Code? HELD: Petitioner insists that because the action for declaration of nullity of marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity and the action for declaration of nullity of marriage on the ground of absence of marriage license constitute separate causes of action, the present case would not fall under the prohibition against splitting a single cause of action nor would it be barred by the principle of res judicata. The contention is untenable. Res judicata is defined as "a matter adjudged; a thing judicially acted upon or decided; a thing or matter settled by judgment. It also refers to the rule that a final judgment or decree on the merits by a court of competent jurisdiction is conclusive of the rights of the parties or their privies in all later suits on points and matters determined in the former suit." This doctrine is a rule which pervades every wellregulated system of jurisprudence and is founded upon the following precepts of common law, namely: (1) public policy and necessity, which makes it to the interest of the State that there should be an end to litigation, and (2) the hardship on the individual that he should be vexed twice for the same cause. A contrary doctrine would subject the public peace and quiet to the will and neglect of individuals and prefer the gratification of the litigious disposition on the part of suitors to the preservation of the public tranquility and happiness. Res judicata in this sense requires the concurrence of the following requisites: (1) the former judgment is final; (2) it is rendered by a court having jurisdiction over the subject matter and the parties; (3) it is a judgment or an order on the merits; and (4) there is between the first and the second actions identity of parties, of subject matter, and of causes of action. Petitioner does not dispute the existence of the first three requisites. What is in issue is the presence of the fourth requisite. In this regard, the test to determine whether the causes of action are identical is to ascertain whether the same evidence will sustain both actions, or whether there is an identity in the facts essential to the maintenance of the two actions. If the same facts or evidence would sustain both, the two actions are considered the same, and a judgment in the first case is a bar to the subsequent action. Based on this test, petitioner would contend that the two petitions brought by him seeking the declaration of nullity of his marriage are anchored on separate causes of action for the evidence necessary to sustain the first petition which was anchored on the alleged psychological incapacity of respondent is different from the evidence necessary to sustain the present petition which is anchored on the purported absence of a marriage license. Petitioner, however, forgets that he is simply invoking different grounds for the same cause of action. By definition, a cause of action is the act or omission by which a party violates the right of another. In both petitions, petitioner has the same cause the declaration of nullity of his marriage to respondent. What differs is the ground upon which the cause of action is predicated. These grounds cited by petitioner essentially split the various aspects of the pivotal issue that holds the key to the resolution of this controversy, that is, the actual status of petitioner and respondent's marriage. Furthermore, the instant case is premised on the claim that the marriage is null and void because no valid celebration of the same took place due to the

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alleged lack of a marriage license. In Civil Case No. SP 4341-95, however, petitioner impliedly conceded that the marriage had been solemnized and celebrated in accordance with law. Petitioner is now bound by this admission. The alleged absence of a marriage license which petitioner raises now could have been presented and heard in the earlier case. Suffice it to state that parties are bound not only as regards every matter offered and received to sustain or defeat their claims or demand but as to any other admissible matter which might have been offered for that purpose and of all other matters that could have been adjudged in that case. It must be emphasized that a party cannot evade or avoid the application of res judicata by simply varying the form of his action or adopting a different method of presenting his case. It bears stressing that a party cannot divide the grounds for recovery. A plaintiff is mandated to place in issue in his pleading, all the issues existing when the suit began. A lawsuit cannot be tried piecemeal. The plaintiff is bound to set forth in his first action every ground for relief which he claims to exist and upon which he relied, and cannot be permitted to rely upon them by piecemeal in successive action to recover for the same wrong or injury. 47) NAVARRO vs. DOMAGTOY A.M. No. MTJ-96-108. July 19, 1996 FACTS: The complainant in this administrative case is the Municipal Mayor of Dapa, Surigao del Norte, Rodolfo G. Navarro. He has submitted evidence in relation to two specific acts committed by respondent Municipal Circuit Trial Court Judge Hernando Domagtoy, which, he contends, exhibits gross misconduct as well as inefficiency in office and ignorance of the law. First, on September 27, 1994, respondent judge solemnized the wedding between Gaspar A. Tagadan and Arlyn F. Borga, despite the knowledge that the groom is merely separated from his first wife. Second, it is alleged that he performed a marriage ceremony between Floriano Dador Sumaylo and Gemma G. del Rosario outside his court's jurisdiction on October 27, 1994. Respondent judge holds office and has jurisdiction in the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Sta. Monica-Burgos, Surigao del Norte. The wedding was solemnized at the respondent judge's residence in the municipality of Dapa, which does not fall within his jurisdictional area of the municipalities of Sta. Monica and Burgos, located some 40 to 45 kilometers away from the municipality of Dapa, Surigao del Norte. Respondent judge seeks exculpation from his act of having solemnized the marriage between Gaspar Tagadan, a married man separated from his wife, and Arlyn F. Borga by stating that he merely relied on the Affidavit issued by the Municipal Trial Judge of Basey, Samar, confirming the fact that Mr. Tagadan and his first wife have not seen each other for almost seven years. With respect to the second charge, he maintains that in solemnizing the marriage between Sumaylo and del Rosario, he did not violate Article 7, paragraph 1 of the Family Code which states that: "Marriage may be solemnized by: (1) Any incumbent member of the judiciary within the court's jurisdiction;" and that article 8 thereof applies to the case in question. The marriage contract between Gaspar Tagadan and Arlyn Borga states that Tagadan's civil status is "separated." Despite this declaration, the wedding ceremony was solemnized by respondent judge. He presented in evidence a joint affidavit by Maurecio A. Labado, Sr. and Eugenio Bullecer, subscribed and sworn to before Judge Demosthenes C. Duquilla, MTC of Basey, Samar. In their affidavit, the affiants stated that they knew Gaspar Tagadan to have been civilly married to Ida D. Pearanda in September 1983; that after thirteen years of cohabitation and having borne five children, Ida Pearanda left the conjugal dwelling in Valencia, Bukidnon and that she has not returned nor been heard of for almost seven years, thereby giving rise to the presumption that she is already dead. ISSUE: 1.Whether or not the joint affidavit is sufficient proof of the wife's presumptive death? 2.Whether or not the respondent judge erred when he solemnized the marriage outside his court's jurisdiction? HELD: 1. The Supreme Court ruled that the joint affidavit is insufficient proof to declare wife's presumptive death. Article 41 of the Family Code expressly provides that for the purpose of contracting the subsequent marriage under the preceding paragraph, the spouse present must institute a summary proceeding as

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provided in this Code for the declaration of presumptive death of the absentee, without prejudice to the effect of reappearance of the absent spouse. Even if the spouse present has a well-founded belief that the absent spouse was already dead, a summary proceeding for the declaration of presumptive death is necessary in order to contract a subsequent marriage, a mandatory requirement which has been precisely incorporated into the Family Code to discourage subsequent marriages where it is not proven that the previous marriage has been dissolved or a missing spouse is factually or presumptively dead, in accordance with pertinent provisions of law. Gaspar Tagadan did not institute a summary proceeding for the declaration of his first wife's presumptive death. Absent this judicial declaration, he remains married to Ida Pearanda. Whether wittingly or unwittingly, it was manifest error on the part of respondent judge to have accepted the joint affidavit submitted by the groom. Such neglect or ignorance of the law has resulted in a bigamous, and therefore void, marriage. 2. The Supreme Court ruled that Judge Domagtoy erred when he soemnized the marriage outside his court's jurisdiction. According to article 8 of the Familiy Code The marriage shall be solemnized publicly in the chambers the judge or in open court, in the church, chapel or temple, or in the office of the consul-general, consul or vice-consul, as the case may be, and not elsewhere, except in cases of marriages contracted on the point of death or in remote places in accordance with Article 29 of this Code, or where both parties request the solemnizing officer in writing in which case the marriage may be solemnized at a house or place designated by them in a sworn statement to that effect. There is no proof that either Sumaylo or del Rosario was at the point of death or in the remote place. Moreover, the written request presented addressed to the respondent judge was made by only one party, Gemma del Rosario. One of the formal requisites of marriage is the "authority of the solemnizing officer." Article 8, which is a directory provision, refers only to the venue of the marriage ceremony and does not alter or qualify the authority of the solemnizing officer as provided in the preceding provision. Non-compliance herewith will not invalidate the marriage. Judges who are appointed to specific jurisdictions, may officiate in weddings only within said areas and not beyond. Where a judge solemnizes a marriage outside his court's jurisdiction, there is a resultant irregularity in the formal requisite, which while it may not affect the validity of the marriage, may subject the officiating official to administrative liability. Respondent judge's jurisdiction covers the municipalities of Sta. Monica and Burgos, he was not clothed with authority to solemnize a marriage in the municipality of Dapa, Surigao del Norte. The Supreme Court finds respondent to have acted in gross ignorance of the law. The legal principles applicable in the cases brought to our attention are elementary and uncomplicated, prompting us to conclude that respondent's failure to apply them is due to a lack of comprehension of the law. Judge Domagtoy is SUSPENDED for a period of 6 months. The marriage between Gaspar Tagadan and Arlyn Borga is considered bigamous and void, there being a subsisting marriage between Gaspar Tagadan and Ida Pearanda. 48) BESO vs. DAGUMAN A.M. No. 99-1211, January 28, 2000 FACTS: On August 28, 1997, the marriage between Zenaida Beso and Bernardito Yman was solemnized by Judge Juan Daguman at J.P.R. Subdivision in Calbayog City, Samar. After the wedding, Yman abandoned Petitioner. Thereafter, Petitioner found that her marriage was not registered at the Civil Registry. She then filed an administrative complaint against the Respondent charging him with Neglect of Duty and Abuse of Authority for solemnizing marriage outside of his jurisdiction and of negligence in not retaining a copy and not registering the marriage contract with the office of the Local Registrar. In his Comment, Respondent averred that the civil marriage had to be solemnized outside his territory because on that date respondent was physically indisposed and unable to report to his station in Sta. Margarita and that Beso and Yman unexpectedly came to his house urgently requesting the celebration of their marriage rites since the complainant, who is an overseas worker, would be

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out of the country for a long period and their marriage license would lapse before she could return to the Philippines. He further averred that after handling to Yman the first copy of the marriage certificate, he left the three remaining copies on top of the desk in his private office intending later to register the duplicate and triplicate copies and to keep the fourth in his office but said copies were lost; that he diligently searched for them and even subpoenad Yman to further inquire but was told that Complainant put the copies of the marriage certificate in her bag during the wedding party and that Complainant already left for abroad. ISSUE: Whether or not the respondent is guilty of Neglect of Duty and Abuse of Authority? HELD: Yes. As presiding judge of the MCTC Sta. Margarita Tarangnan-Pagsanjan, Samar, his authority to solemnize marriage is only limited to those municipalities under his jurisdiction. Considering that respondents Judge's jurisdiction covers the municipality of Sta. Margarita-Tarangan-Pagsanjan, Samar only, he was not clothed with authority to solemnize a marriage in the City of Calbayog. As provided by Article 8 of the Family Code, wherein a marriage may be solemnized by a judge outside his chamber[s] or at a place other than his sala, to wit: (1) when either or both of the contracting parties is at the point of death;(2) when the residence of either party is located in a remote place; (3) where both of the parties request the solemnizing officer in writing in which case the marriage may be solemnized at a house or place designated by them in a sworn statement to that effect. The foregoing circumstances are unavailing in the instant case. Moreover, as solemnizing officer, respondent Judge neglected his duty when he failed to register the marriage. Such duty is entrusted upon him pursuant to Article 23 of the Family Code requiring the same not later than fifteen days after the marriage. The records show that the loss was occasioned by carelessness on respondent Judge's part. Hence, Respondent is guilty of neglect of duty and abuse of authority. FACTS: Private respondent Crasus Iyoy filed a complaint for declaration of nullity of marriage due to psychological incapacity under Article 36 of the Family Code, in relation with Articles 68, 70, and 72, with Fely Ada Rosal. According to him, they got married in 1961. The marriage produced five children. But the marriage faded because Fely was a nagger, extravagant and hot-tempered. In 1984, Fely left for the United States. Barely a year after she left, Crasus received a letter from her requesting that he sign the divorce papers. But he ignored the request Sometime in 1985, he was informed that Fely had already married an American. In 1987, she came back to the Philippines with her American family. In 1990, she came back to attend the wedding of their eldest son, but in the invitations, she used the surname of her American husband. She returned in 1992 for the operation of their fourth child. In her Answer to the Complaint, she asserted that she was already an American citizen in 1988, that she was no longer hot-tempered, nagger and extravagant and that the only reason she went to the United States was that their income was not enough to sustain their family, that it was Crasus who was irresponsible and in fact living with another woman who bore her a child. She also denied that she sent a letter requesting him to sign the divorce papers. After hearing both sides, the RTC rendered a decision declaring the marriage null and void ab initio under Article 36 of the Family Code. On appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the lower court but this time it had added a ratiocination, stating that Article 26, 2nd paragraph of the Family Code is applicable also to this case. ISSUES: 1. Whether or not there was psychological incapacity on the part of Fely? 2. Whether or not the second paragraph of Article 26 of the Family Code is applicable? HELD 1. The Supreme Court ruled in the negative. Article 36 contemplates downright incapacity or inability to take cognizance of and to assume the basic marital obligations, not a mere refusal, neglect or difficulty, much less, ill will, on the part of the errant spouse. It was held in previous rulings that irreconcilable differences, conflicting personalities, emotional immaturity and irresponsibility, physical abuse, habitual alcoholism, sexual infidelity or perversion, and abandonment, by themselves, also do not

49) REPUBLIC vs. IYOY G.R. No. 152577 September 21, 2005

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warrant a finding of psychological incapacity under the said Article. 2. The Supreme Court ruled in the negative. The second paragraph of Article 26 is not applicable. As plainly worded, the provision refers to a special situation wherein a foreigner divorces his or her Filipino spouse. However, in this case, it cannot be applied because of the simple fact that at the time Fely secured a divorce decree, she was still a Filipino. Fely admitted in her Answer filed before the RTC that she married her American spouse in 1985 but she also admitted that she became and American citizen only in 1988. Thus, she was still a Filipino citizen and Article 15 of the Civil Code applies, she was still bound by Philippine laws on family rights and duties, status, condition and legal capacity, even though she was already living abroad. 50) REPUBLIC vs. ORBECIDO III GR No. 154380 October 5, 2005 FACTS: In 1981, Cipriano Orbecido and Lady Myros Villanueva were married in Ozamis City. Their marriage was blessed with a son and a daughter, Krsitoffer and Kimberly. In 1986, Lady Myros left for the US bringing along their son Kristoffer. A few years later, Cipriano discovered that his wife had been naturalized as an American citizen. Sometime in 2000, Cipriano learned from his son that his wife had obtained a divorce decree and then married an American, Innocent Stanley. Thereafter, Cipriano filed with the trial court a petition for authority to remarry invoking paragraph 2 of Article 26 of the Family Code. Finding merit on the petition, the court granted the same. The Republic, through the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), sought reconsideration but it was denied. In this petition, the Republic contends that Par. 2 of Art. 26 of the Family Code is not applicable to the instant case because it only applies to a valid mixed marriage; that is, a marriage celebrated between a Filipino and an alien. ISSUE: Whether or not respondent can remarry pursuant to Article 26 of the Family Code? HELD: The Supreme Court was unanimous in holding that par. 2, Art. 26 of the Family Code should be interpreted to allow a Filipino citizen, who has been divorced by a spouse who had acquired foreign citizenship and remarried, also to remarry. The twin elements of Par. 2 of Art. 26 of the Family Code are as follows: (1) there is a valid marriage that has been celebrated between a Filipino citizen and a foreigner and (2) a valid divorce is obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating him or her to remarry. The reckoning point is not the citizenship at the time of the celebration of marriage, but their citizenship at the time a valid divorce is obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating the latter to remarry. In this case, when Lady Myros was naturalized as an American citizen, there was still a valid marriage that has been celebrated between her and Cipriano. Subsequently, the wife obtained a divorce capacitating him to remarry. Clearly, the twin requisites are both present in the case. Thus, Cipriano, the divorced Filipino spouse, should be allowed to remarry. However, for respondents plea to prosper, he must prove that his wife was naturalized as an American citizen and must show sufficient proof of the divorce decree. Cipriano failed to do this so the petition of the Republic was granted. 51) Atienza vs. Brillantes A.M. No. MTJ-92-706, 29 March 1995 Quiason, J.: FACTS: A complaint file by complainant Lupo A. Atienza (Atienza) for gross immorality and appearance of impropriety against respondent Judge Francisco Brillantes, Jr. (Brillantes). Atienza has two children with Yolanda De Castrp (De Castro). There was a time when Atienza chanced upon Brillantes sleeping on his bedroom and was later on informed by their houseboy that Brillantes is cohabiting wioth De Castro. Atienza claims that Brillantes was married to Zenaida Ongkiko (Ongkiko) whom the latter has five children. Brillantes denied having married Ongkiko, because it was celebrated without a marriage license, the same incident also happened on their second marriage. Brillantes was thereafter abandoned by Ongkiko seventeen years ago.

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Brillantes claims that when he married De Castro in Los Angeles, California, he believed in good faith and for all legal purposes that he was single because his marriage with Ongkiko was celebrated without a license. ISSUE: Wether a judicial declaration that the previous marriage was void is under Article 40 of the Family Code required before entering into a second marriage. RULING: YES, respondent argues that the provision of Article 40 of the Family Code does not apply to him considering that his first marriage took place in 1965 and was governed by the Civil Code of the Philippines, while the second marriage took place in 1991 and governed by the Family Code. Article 40 of the Family Code is applicable to marriages entered into after the effectively of the Family Code on 3 August 1988 regardless of the date of the first marriage. Besides, under Article 256 of the Family Code, said article is given retroactive effect insofar as it does not prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights in accordance with the Civil Code or other Laws. This is particularly true with Article 40 of the Family Code, which is a rule of procedure. Respondent has not shown any vested right that was impaired by the application of Article of the Family Code in this case. >Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser 52) Borja-Manzano vs. Sanchez A.M. No. MTJ-00-1329, 8 March 2001 David, Jr. C,.J.: FACTS: Complainant-petitioner Herminia BorjaManzano (Herminia) was the lawful wife of the late David Manzano being married on 21 May 1966. On 22nd of March 1993, her husband contracted another marriage with one Luzviminda Payao before respondent Judge Roque R. Sanchez (Judge Sanchez). That Judge Sanchez should have known that the marriage was a bigamous one as the marriage clearly stated that both contracting parties were Separate. Judge Sanchez claims innocence as to the fact of the previous marriage, and solemnized their marriage in accordance with Article 34 of the Family Code. ISSUE: Whether Judge Sanchez should be held liable. RULING: YES, for Article 31 of the Family Code to apply the provision on legal ratification of marital cohabitation to apply, the following requisites must apply: 1.) The man and woman have been living together as husband and wife for at least five years before the marriage; 2.) The parties must have no legal impediment to marry each other; 3.) The fact of absence of legal impediment between the parties must be present at the time of marriage; 4.) The parties must execute an affidavit stating that they lived together for at least five years and are without legal impediment to marry each other. 5.) The solemnizing officer must execute a sworn statement that he had ascertained the qualifications of the parties and that he had found no legal impediment to their marriage. Not all this requirement are present in the case at bar. It is significant to note that in their separate affidavits executed on 22 nd of March 1993 and sworn to before respondent Judge himself. David Manzano and Luzviminda Payao expressly stated the fact of their prior existing marriage. Also in their marriage contract, it was indicated that both were separated. Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser

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VII. VOID MARRIAGES 53) Suntay vs. Cojuangco-Suntay G.R. No. 132524, 29 December 1998 Martinez, J: FACTS: Emilio Aguinaldo Suntay (Emilio), son of petitioner Federico Suntay (Federico), was married to Isabel Cojuangco-Suntay (Isabel:) their marriage was celebrated in the Portuguese Colony of Macao. Subsequently it was declared as void ab initio or null and void. The basis of the Court of First Instance for such a ruling was that Emilio suffers from a mental aberration known as schizophrenia. Emilio predeceased his mother, decedent Cristina Aguinaldo Suntay. Isabel, herein respondent, the daughter of Emilio and Isabel Cojuangco-Suntay, filed before the Regional Trial Court a petition for letters of administration of the intestate estate of her late grandmother Cristina Aguinaldo Suntay. Petitioner Federico moved to dismiss the case on the ground of Article 922 of the Civil Code an illegitimate child has no right to succeed by right of representation the legitimate relatives of her father or mother. Federico contends that Emilio Aguinaldo Suntay, respondent Isabels father predeceased his mother, the late Cristina Aguinaldo Suntay. It opened a path to succession by representation, as a consequence of declaration by the Court of First Instance that the marriage of respondent Isabels parents is null and void. Making Isabel an illegitimate child and has no right nor interest in the estate of her paternal grandmother the decedent. ISSUE: Whether Isabel Aguinaldo CojuangcoSuntay is a legitimate child despite the declaration that her parents marriage was void ab initio denying her succession right from her grandmother. RULING: YES. the marriage of Emilio Suntay and Isabel Cojuangco-Suntay was annulled on the basis of Article 85 par. 3 of the Civil Code which refers to marriages which are considered voidable. Being conceived and born of a voidable marriage before the decree of annulment, she is considered legitimate. The status of children born in voidable marriages is governed by the second paragraph of Article 89 which provides that: Children conceived of voidable marriages before the decree of annulment shall be considered as legitimate The annulment of the marriage by the court abolishes the legal character of the society formed by the putative spouses, but It cannot destroy consequences which marital union produced during its continuance. Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser 54) Nial vs. Bayadaog G.R. No. 133778, 14 March 2000 Ynares Santiago, J.: FACTS:Pepito Nial (Pepito) and Teodulfa Bellones was married on September 26, 1974 whereby petitioners Babyline, Ingrid, Archie and Pepito Jr., a;; surnamed Nial were born. Pepito shot Teodulfa resulting to the latters death. One year and eight months after the incident Pepito and Norma Bayadog, herein respondent (Bayadog) got married without any marriage license. Pepito and Bayadog executed an affidavit dated December 11, 1986 state that they had lived together as husband and wife for at least five years thus exempting them from securing a marriage license. Pepito died in a car accident. Thereafter petitioners question the validity of the subsequent marriage of Pepito and Bayadog due to the absence of a marriage license as it was void. ISSUE: Whether the cohabitation of Pepito and Bayadog is that one in contemplation of the law. RULING: No, the five year period should be the years immediately before the day of the marriage and it should be a period of cohabitation characterized by exclusivity-meaning no third part was involved at any time within the five years and continuity that is unbroken. In this case, at the time of Pepito and respondents marriage, it cannot be said that they have lived with each other as husband and wife for at least five years prior to this wedding day. From the time Pepitos first marriage was dissolved to the time of his marriage with respondent, only about twenty months had elapsed. Even assuming that Pepito and respondent had started living with each other the fact remains that their five year period of cohabitation was not the cohabitation contemplated by law. It should be in the nature of a perfect union

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that is valid under the law but rendered imperfect only by the absence of a marriage contract. Pepito had a subsisting marriage at the time when he started cohabiting with respondent. It is immaterial that when they lived with each other, Pepito had already been separated in fact from his lawful spouse. The subsistence of the marriage even where there was actual severance of the filial companionship between the spouses cannot make any cohabitation by either spouse with any third party as being as husband and wife. Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser 55) Ty vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 127406, 27 November 2000 Quisumbing, J.: FACTS: Private Respondent Edgardo M. Reyes married in a civil ceremony Anna Maria Regina Villanueva thereafter a church wedding was celebrated. The marriage was subsequently declared null and void ab initio for lack of marriage license and lack of consent of the parties. Even before the decree was issued nullifying the marriage, private respondent Edgardo M. Reyes married Ofelia P. Ty, herein petitioner, on 4 April 1979. The decree of nullity of his marriage to Anna Maira was rendered only on 4 August 1980, while his civil marriage to petitioner Ofelia P. Ty took place on 4 April 1979. ISSUE: Whether the decree of nullity of the first marriage is required before a subsequent marriage can be entered into validity. RULING: YES, a declaration of absolute nullity of marriage is now explicitly required either as a cause of action or a ground for defense. (Art. 39 of the Family Code). Where the absolute nullity of a previous marriage is sought to be invoked for purposes of contacting a second marriage, the sole basis acceptable in law for said projected marriage to be free from legal infirmity is a final judgment declaring previous marriage void. In the present case, the second marriage of private respondent was entered into 1979, before Wiegel, at that time the prevailing rules was found In Odayat, Mendoza and Aragon. The first marriage of private respondent being void for lack of license and consent, there was no need for judicial declaration of its nullity before he could contract a second marriage. In this case, therefore, we conclude that private respondents second marriage to petitioner was valid. >Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser 56) Terre vs. Terre A.M. No 2349, 3 July 1992 Per Curiam FACTS: Complaint Dorothy B. Terre met respondent Atty. Jordan Terre for the first time in 1979 as fourth year high school classmates; Dorothy was then married to Merillo Bercellina. Dorothy and Atty. Jordan went to manila to pursue their education of personal choosing. Atty. Jordan took up law at Lyceum Univsersity, still courting Dorothy on the process this time with more persistence. Jordan explained to Dorothy that their marriage is void ab initio due to the reason that Dorothy and Merlito were first cousins, convince by his explanation and having secured a favorable advice from her mother and ex in-laws, Dorothy agreed to marry Atty. Jordan. In their marriage license Atty. Jordan wrote single as her status explaining that since her marriage was void ab initio, no need to go to court for a declaration. Later on Dorothy found out that Atty. Jordan was already married to one Helina Malicdem. When Atty. Jordan prior marriage with Dorothy was subsisting, no judicial declaration was obtained as to nullity of or any judicial declaration obtained as to nullity of such prior marriage of respondent with complainant. ISSUE: Whether Atty. Jordan Terre should be liable for gross immorality. RULING: Yes, respondent Terre, being a lawyer, knew or should have known that such an agreement ran counter to the prevailing case law of the court which holds that for purposes of determining whether a person is legally free to contract a second marriage, a judicial declaration that the first a marriage was null and void ab initio is essential. Even if we are to assume , arguendo merely, that Jordan Terre held that mistaken belief in good faith, the same result will follow. For if we are to hold Jordan Terre to his own argument, his first marriage to complainant Dorothy Terre must be deemed valid, with the result that his second marriage to Helina Malicdem must be regarded as bigamous and criminal in character. >Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser

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VIII. PSCYHOLOGICAL INCAPACITY 57) Santos vs. The Honorable Court of Appeals G.R. No. 112019, 4 January 1995 En Banc: FACTS: Petitioner Leouel Santos (Leouel), a first lieutenant in the Philippine Army, and private respondent Julia Rosario Bedia-Santos (Julia) were married. The ecstasy did not last long because of the frequent interference of Julias parents into the young spouses family affairs. Julia left for United States of America to work as a Nurse despite Leouels pleas to dissuade her. Seven months after her departure, Julia called up Leoule for the first time by long distance telephone. She promised to return home upon the expiration of her contract in July 1989. She never did. When Leouel got a chance to visit the United States during a training program under the auspices of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, he desperately tried to locate Julia but his efforts were in vain. Having failed, Leouel filed with the Regional Trial Court a complaint for Voiding of marriage under Article 36 of the Family Code. ISSUE: Whether Leouels petition to declare their marriage with Julia void ab initio under Article 36 of the Family Code will prosper. RULING: No, Article 36 of the Family Code cannot be taken and construed independently of, but must stand in conjunction with, existing precept un our law on marriage. Thus correlated, psychological incapacity should refer to no less than a mental (not 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 by Article 68 of the Family Code, include 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 disorder clearly demonstrative of an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and significance to the marriage. This psycholigic condition must exist at the time the marriage is celebrated. The law does not evidently envision, upon the other hand, an inability of the spouse to have sexual relations with the other. This conclusion is implicit under Article 54 of the Family Code which considers children conceived prior to the judicial declaration of nullity of the void marriage to be legitimate. The factual setting in the case at bench, in no measure at all, can come close to the standards required to decree nullity of marriage. Undeniably and understandably, Leouel stands aggrieved, even desperate, in his present situation. Regrettably, neither law nor society itself can always provide all the specific answers to every individual problem. Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser 58) Chi Ming Tsoi vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 119190, 16 January 1997 Torres, Jr.: FACTS: Petitioner Chi Ming Tsos (Petitioner) and private respondent Gina Lao-Tsoi (Respondent) were married at the Manila Cathedral. They went and proceeded to the house of petitioners mother and slept together on the same room in the first night of their married life. Instead of enjoying the night of their marriage, petitioner just went to bed and slept on his side then turned his back and went to sleep. There was no sexual intercourse between them during the first night. The same thing happened on the second, third and fourth nights. In an effort to have their honeymoon in a private place where they can enjoy together during their first week as husband and wife, they went to Baguio City. But, they did so together with her mother, uncle, his mother and his nephew. They were all invited to join them. There was no sexual intercourse between them, since petitioner avoided her by taking a long walk during siesta time or just by sleeping on a rocking chair located at the living room. Respondent claims that she never seen her husbands private parts. They submitted themselves to medical examinations, respondent was found to be healthy and still a virgin but petitioner was told to return but never did. It was found that petitioner is capable of having sexual intercourse with a woman. Respondent claims that petitioner is impotent, a closet homosexual as he did not show his penis. ISSUE: Whether their marriage can be declared as null and void ab initio due to psychological incapacity. RULING: Yes, one of the essential marital obligations under the Family Code is to procreate

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children based on the universal principle that procreation of children through sexual cooperation is the basic end of marriage. Constant non-fulfillment of this obligation will finally destroy the integrity or wholeness of the marriage. In the case at bar, the senseless and protracted refusal of one of the parties to fulfill the above marital obligations is equivalent to incapacity. It is sexual intimacy which brings spouses wholeness and oneness. Sexual intimacy is a gift and a participation in the mystery of creation. It is a function which enlivens the hope of procreation and ensures the continuation of family relations. It appears that there is absence of empathy between petitioner and private respondent. That is a shared feeling which between husband and wife must be experienced not only by having spontaneous sexual intimacy but a deep sense of spiritual communion. Marital union is a two-way process. An expressive interest in each others feelings at a time is needed by the other can go along way in deepening the marital relationship. Marriage is definitely not for children but for two consenting adults who view the relationship with love, amor gignit amore, respect, sacrifice and a continuing commitment to compromise, conscious of its value as a sublime social institution. >Digest by: Allan Matthew G. Bueser 59) REPUBLIC VS. CA and MOLINA GR No. 108763. February 13, 1997 FACTS: Roridel Olaviano was married to Reynaldo Molina on 14 April 1985 in Manila, and gave birth to a son a year after. Reynaldo showed signs of immaturity and irresponsibility on the early stages of the marriage, observed from his tendency to spend time with his friends and squandering his money with them, from his dependency from his parents, and his dishonesty on matters involving his finances. Thereafter, Reynaldo was relieved of his job in 1986. Roridel became the sole breadwinner of the family. In March 1987, Roridel resigned from her job in Manila and proceeded to Baguio City. Reynaldo left her and their child a week later. The couple are separated-in-fact for more than three years. On 16 August 1990, Roridel filed a verified petition for declaration of nullity of her marriage to Reynaldo Molina. Evidence for Roridel consisted of her own testimony, that of two of her friends, a social worker, and a psychiatrist of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center. Reynaldo did not present any evidence as he appeared only during the pre-trial conference. On 14 May 1991, the trial court rendered judgment declaring the marriage void. The Solicitor General appealed to the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals denied the appeals and affirmed in toto the RTCs decision. Hence, the present recourse. ISSUE: Whether opposing or conflicting personalities should be construed as psychological incapacity HELD: In Santos v. Court of Appeals, where psychological incapacity should refer to no less than a mental (not physical) incapacity, existing at the time the marriage is celebrated, and that 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. Psychological incapacity must be characterized by gravity, juridical antecedence, and incurability. In the present case, there is no clear showing to us that the psychological defect spoken of is an incapacity; but appears to be more of a difficulty, if not outright refusal or neglect in the performance of some marital obligations. Mere showing of irreconcilable differences and conflicting personalities in no wise constitutes psychological incapacity. The Court, in this case, promulgated the guidelines in the interpretation and application of Article 36 of the Family Code, removing any visages of it being the most liberal divorce procedure in the world: (1) The burden of proof belongs to the plaintiff; (2) the root cause of psychological incapacity must be medically or clinically identified, alleged in the complaint, sufficiently proven by expert, and clearly explained in the decision; (3) The incapacity must be proven existing at the time of the celebration of marriage; (4) the incapacity must be clinically or medically permanent or incurable; (5) such illness must be grave enough; (6) the essential marital obligation must be embraced by Articles 68 to 71 of the Family Code as regards husband and wife, and Articles 220 to 225 of the same code as regards parents and their children; (7) interpretation made by the National Appellate Matrimonial Tribunal of the Catholic Church, and (8) the trial must order the fiscal and the Solicitor-General to appeal as counsels for the State. The Supreme Court granted the petition, and reversed and set aside the assailed decision; concluding that the marriage of Roridel Olaviano to

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Reynaldo Molina subsists and remains valid. 60) BARCELONA vs. CA & TADEO R. BENGZON G.R. No. 130087. September 24, 2003 FACS: On 29 March 1995, private respondent Tadeo filed a Petition for Annulment of Marriage against petitioner petitioner Diana before the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 87. On 9 May 1995, respondent Tadeo filed a Motion to Withdraw Petition which the trial court granted. On 21 July 1995, respondent Tadeo filed anew a Petition for Annulment of Marriage against petitioner Diana. Petitioner Diana filed a Motion to Dismiss the second petition on two grounds. First, the second petition fails to state a cause of action. Second, it violates Supreme Court Administrative Circular No. 04-94 on forum shopping. Respondent Tadeo opposed the Motion to which petitioner Diana filed Additional Arguments in Support of the Motion. The trial court issued on 18 September 1996 an Order deferring resolution of the Motion until the parties ventilate their arguments in a hearing. Petitioner Diana filed a motion for reconsideration. However, the trial court issued on second order denying the motion. Petitioner Diana filed a Petition for Certiorari, Prohibition and Mandamus before the Court of Appeals assailing the trial courts first order deferring action on the Motion and the second order denying the motion for reconsideration on 14 February 1997. The Court of Appeals dismissed the petition and denied the motion for reconsideration. The Court of Appeals agreed with petitioner Diana that the trial court in its first order erred in deferring action on the Motion until after a hearing on whether the complaint states a cause of action. Nevertheless, the Court of Appeals pointed out that the trial courts second order corrected the situation since in denying the motion for reconsideration, the trial court in effect denied the Motion. The appellate court agreed with the trial court that the allegations in the second petition state a cause of action sufficient to sustain a valid judgment if proven to be true. The Court of Appeals also held that there was no violation of Circular No. 04-94. To determine the existence of forum shopping, the elements of litis pendentia must exist or a final judgment in one case must amount to res judicata in the other. In this case, there is no litis pendentia because respondent Tadeo had caused the dismissal without prejudice of the first petition before filing the second petition. Neither is there res judicata because there is no final decision on the merits. ISSUE: Whether the allegations of the second petition for annulment of marriage sufficiently state a cause of action. HELD: The petition has no merit. Petitioner Dianas contention that the second petition fails to state a cause of action is untenable. We find the second petition sufficiently alleges a cause of action. The petition sought the declaration of nullity of the marriage based on Article 36 of the Family Code. The petition alleged that respondent Tadeo and petitioner Diana were legally married at the Holy Cross Parish after a whirlwind courtship as shown by the marriage contract attached to the petition. The couple established their residence in Quezon City. The union begot five children, Ana Maria, born on 8 November 1964; Isabel, born on 28 October 1968; Ernesto Tadeo, born on 31 March 1970; Regina Rachelle born on 7 March 1974; and Cristina Maria born in February 1978. The petition further alleged that petitioner Diana was psychologically incapacitated at the time of the celebration of their marriage to comply with the essential obligations of marriage and such incapacity subsists up to the present time. Petitioner Diana argues that the second petition falls short of the guidelines set forth in Santos and Molina. Specifically, she contends that the second petition is defective because it fails to allege the root cause of the alleged psychological incapacity. The second petition also fails to state that the alleged psychological incapacity existed from the celebration of the marriage and that it is permanent or incurable. Further, the second petition is devoid of any reference of the grave nature of the illness to bring about the disability of the petitioner to assume the essential obligations of marriage. Lastly, the second petition did not even state the marital obligations which petitioner Diana allegedly failed to comply due to psychological incapacity. The complete facts should allege the physical manifestations, if any, as are indicative of psychological incapacity at the time of the celebration of the marriage but expert opinion need not be alleged. Procedural rules apply to actions pending and unresolved at the time of their passage. The obvious effect of the new Rules providing that expert opinion need not be alleged in the petition is that there is also no need to allege the root cause of the psychological incapacity. Only experts in the fields of neurological and behavioral sciences are competent to determine the root cause of

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psychological incapacity. Since the new Rules do not require the petition to allege expert opinion on the psychological incapacity, it follows that there is also no need to allege in the petition the root cause of the psychological incapacity. The second petition states a cause of action since it states the legal right of respondent Tadeo, the correlative obligation of petitioner Diana, and the act or omission of petitioner Diana in violation of the legal right. 61) MARCOS vs. MARCOS G.R. No. 136490. October 19, 2000 FACTS: Appellant Wilson G. Marcos joined the Armed Forces of the Philippines in 1973. Later on, he was transferred to the Presidential Security Command in Malacaang during the Marcos Regime. Appellee Brenda B. Marcos, on the other hand, joined the Women's Auxilliary Corps under the Philippine Air Force in 1978. After the Edsa Revolution, both of them sought a discharge from the military service. They first met sometime in 1980 when both of them were assigned at the Malacaang Palace, she as an escort of Imee Marcos and he as a Presidential Guard of President Ferdinand Marcos. Through telephone conversations, they became acquainted and eventually became sweethearts. After their marriage on September 6, 1982, they resided at No. 1702 Daisy Street, Hulo Bliss, Mandaluyong, a housing unit which she acquired from the Bliss Development Corporation when she was still single. After the downfall of President Marcos, he left the military service in 1987 and then engaged in different business ventures that did not however prosper. As a wife, she always urged him to look for work so that their children would see him, instead of her, as the head of the family and a good provider. Due to his failure to engage in any gainful employment, they would often quarrel and as a consequence, he would hit and beat her. He would even force her to have sex with him despite her weariness. He would also inflict physical harm on their children for a slight mistake and was so severe in the way he chastised them. Thus, for several times during their cohabitation, he would leave their house. In 1992, they were already living separately. All the while, she was engrossed in the business of selling "magic uling" and chickens. When she was discharged from the military service, she concentrated on her business. Then, she became a supplier in the Armed Forces of the Philippines until she was able to put up a trading and construction company, NS Ness Trading and Construction Development Corporation. On October 16, 1994 the spouses had a bitter quarrel. As they were already living separately, she did not want him to stay in their house anymore. On that day, when she saw him in their house, she was so angry that she lambasted him. He then turned violent, inflicting physical harm on her and even on her mother who came to her aid. The following day, October 17, 1994, she and their children left the house and sought refuge in her sister's house. On October 19, 1994, she submitted herself [to] medical examination at the Mandaluyong Medical Center where her injuries were diagnosed as contusions. Sometime in August 1995, she together with her two sisters and driver, went to him at the Bliss unit in Mandaluyong to look for their missing child, Niko. Upon seeing them, he got mad. After knowing the reason for their unexpected presence, he ran after them with a samurai and even beat her driver. At the time of the filing of this case, she and their children were renting a house in Camella, Paraaque, while the appellant was residing at the Bliss unit in Mandaluyong. In the case study conducted by Social Worker Sonia C. Millan, the children described their father as cruel and physically abusive to them. The appellee submitted herself to psychologist Natividad A. Dayan, Ph.D., for psychological evaluation while the appellant on the other hand, did not. The court a quo found the appellant to be psychologically incapacitated to perform his marital obligations mainly because of his failure to find work to support his family and his violent attitude towards appellee and their children. CA reversed the RTC and held that psychological incapacity had not been established by the totality of the evidence presented on the basis that there is no evidence at all that would show that the appellant was suffering from an incapacity which was psychological or mental - not physical to the extent that he could not have known the obligations he was assuming: that the incapacity was grave, had preceded the marriage and was incurable." Hence, this Petition. ISSUES: 1) Whether or not the Honorable Court of Appeals could set aside the findings by the Regional Trial Court of psychological incapacity of a respondent in a Petition for declaration of nullity of marriage simply because the respondent did not subject himself to psychological evaluation.

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2) Whether or not the totality of evidence presented and the demeanor of all the witnesses should be the basis of the determination of the merits of the Petition. HELD: 1)The guidelines incorporate the three basic requirements earlier mandated by the Court in Santos v. Court of Appeals: "psychological incapacity must be characterized by (a) gravity (b) juridical antecedence, and (c) incurability." The foregoing guidelines do not require that a physician examine the person to be declared psychologically incapacitated. In fact, the root cause may be "medically or clinically identified." What is important is the presence of evidence that can adequately establish the party's psychological condition. For indeed, if the totality of evidence presented is enough to sustain a finding of psychological incapacity, then actual medical examination of the person concerned need not be resorted to. 2) We rule in the negative. Although this Court is sufficiently convinced that respondent failed to provide material support to the family and may have resorted to physical abuse and abandonment, the totality of his acts does not lead to a conclusion of psychological incapacity on his part. There is absolutely no showing that his "defects" were already present at the inception of the marriage or that they are incurable. Verily, the behavior of respondent can be attributed to the fact that he had lost his job and was not gainfully employed for a period of more than six years. It was during this period that he became intermittently drunk, failed to give material and moral support, and even left the family home. Thus, his alleged psychological illness was traced only to said period and not to the inception of the marriage. Equally important, there is no evidence showing that his condition is incurable, especially now that he is gainfully employed as a taxi driver. Article 36 of the Family Code, we stress, is not to be confused with a divorce law that cuts the marital bond at the time the causes therefor manifest themselves. It refers to a serious psychological illness afflicting a party even before the celebration of the marriage. It is a malady so grave and so permanent as to deprive one of awareness of the duties and responsibilities of the matrimonial bond one is about to assume. These marital obligations are those provided under Articles 68 to 71, 220, 221 and 225 of the Family Code. Neither is Article 36 to be equated with legal separation, in which the grounds need not be rooted in psychological incapacity but on physical violence, moral pressure, moral corruption, civil interdiction, drug addiction, habitual alcoholism, sexual infidelity, abandonment and the like. At best, the evidence presented by petitioner refers only to grounds for legal separation, not for declaring a marriage void. Because Article 36 has been abused as a convenient divorce law, this Court laid down the procedural requirements for its invocation in Molina. Petitioner, however, has not faithfully observed them. In sum, this Court cannot declare the dissolution of the marriage for failure of petitioner to show that the alleged psychological incapacity is characterized by gravity, juridical antecedence and incurability; and for her failure to observe the guidelines outlined in Molina. 62) REPUBLIC vs. LOLITA QUINTERO-HAMANO G.R. No. 149498. May 20, 2004 FACTS: On June 17, 1996, respondent Lolita filed a complaint for declaration of nullity of her marriage to her husband Toshio Hamano, a Japanese national, on the ground of psychological incapacity. In October 1986, she and Toshio started a common-law relationship in Japan. They later lived in the Philippines for a month. Thereafter, Toshio went back to Japan and stayed there for half of 1987. On November 16, 1987, she gave birth to their child. On January 14, 1988, she and Toshio were married by Judge Isauro M. Balderia of the Municipal Trial Court of Bacoor, Cavite. Unknown to respondent, Toshio was psychologically incapacitated to assume his marital responsibilities, which incapacity became manifest only after the marriage. One month after their marriage, Toshio returned to Japan and promised to return by Christmas to celebrate the holidays with his family. After sending money to respondent for two months, Toshio stopped giving financial support. She wrote him several times but he never responded. Sometime in 1991, respondent learned from her friends that Toshio visited the Philippines but he did not bother to see her and their child. The summons issued to Toshio remained unserved because he was no longer residing at his given address. Because Toshio failed to file a responsive pleading after the lapse of 60 days from publication, respondent filed a motion dated November 5, 1996 to refer the case to the prosecutor for investigation. The trial court granted the motion on November 7, 1996. On November 20, 1996, prosecutor Rolando

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I. Gonzales filed a report finding that no collusion existed between the parties. On February 13, 1997, the trial court granted respondents motion to present her evidence ex parte. She then testified on how Toshio abandoned his family. She thereafter offered documentary evidence to support her testimony. The trial court rendered a decision declaring the marriage between petitioner Lolita and Toshio null and void on the basis of the records that respondent spouses failed to fulfill his obligations as husband of the petitioner and father to his daughter. Respondent remained irresponsible and unconcerned over the needs and welfare of his family. The Office of the Solicitor General, representing herein petitioner Republic of the Philippines, appealed to the Court of Appeals but the same was denied. The appellate court thus concluded that respondent was psychologically incapacitated to perform his marital obligations to his family, and to "observe mutual love, respect and fidelity, and render mutual help and support" pursuant to Article 68 of the Family Code of the Philippines. The appellate court emphasized that this case could not be equated with Republic vs. Court of Appeals and Molina and Santos vs. Court of Appeals. In those cases, the spouses were Filipinos while this case involved a "mixed marriage," the husband being a Japanese national. Hence, this petition, ISSUE: Whether or not the mere abandonment by Toshio of his family and his insensitivity to them constitute psychological incapacity. HELD: We rule in favor of petitioner. The Court is mindful of the policy of the 1987 Constitution to protect and strengthen the family as the basic autonomous social institution and marriage as the foundation of the family. Thus, any doubt should be resolved in favor of the validity of the marriage. What is important is the presence of evidence that can adequately establish the partys psychological condition. For indeed, if the totality of evidence presented is enough to sustain a finding of psychological incapacity, then actual medical examination of the person concerned need not be resorted to. We find that the totality of evidence presented fell short of proving that Toshio was psychologically incapacitated to assume his marital responsibilities. Toshios act of abandonment was doubtlessly irresponsible but it was never alleged nor proven to be due to some kind of psychological illness. After respondent testified on how Toshio abandoned his family, no other evidence was presented showing that his behavior was caused by a psychological disorder. Although, as a rule, there was no need for an actual medical examination, it would have greatly helped respondents case had she presented evidence that medically or clinically identified his illness. This could have been done through an expert witness. This respondent did not do. We must remember that abandonment is also a ground for legal separation. There was no showing that the case at bar was not just an instance of abandonment in the context of legal separation. We cannot presume psychological defect from the mere fact that Toshio abandoned his family immediately after the celebration of the marriage. As we ruled in Molina, it is not enough to prove that a spouse failed to meet his responsibility and duty as a married person; it is essential that he must be shown to be incapable of doing so due to some psychological, not physical, illness. There was no proof of a natal or supervening disabling factor in the person, an adverse integral element in the personality structure that effectively incapacitates a person from accepting and complying with the obligations essential to marriage. According to the appellate court, the requirements in Molina and Santos do not apply here because the present case involves a "mixed marriage," the husband being a Japanese national. We disagree. In proving psychological incapacity, we find no distinction between an alien spouse and a Filipino spouse. We cannot be lenient in the application of the rules merely because the spouse alleged to be psychologically incapacitated happens to be a foreign national. The medical and clinical rules to determine psychological incapacity were formulated on the basis of studies of human behavior in general. Hence, the norms used for determining psychological incapacity should apply to any person regardless of nationality. 63) DEDEL vs. DEDEL G.R. No. 151867. January 29, 2004 FACTS: Petitioner David met respondent Sharon while he was working in the advertising business of his father. Eventually, their relationship resulted in the exchange of marital vows before the City Court of Pasay on September 28, 1966 and followed by civil marriage in a church wedding on May 20, 1967. The union produced four children. The conjugal

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partnership, nonetheless, acquired neither property nor debt. Petitioner avers that during the marriage, Sharon turned out to be an irresponsible and immature wife and mother. She had extra-marital affairs with several men: a dentist in the AFP; a Lieutenant in the Presidential Security Command and later a Jordanian national. Sharon was once confirmed in the Manila Medical City for treatment by Dr. Lourdes Lapuz, a clinical psychiatrist. Petitioner alleged that despite the treatment, Sharon did not stop her illicit relationship with the Jordanian national named Mustafa Ibrahim, whom she married and with whom she had two children. When Mustafa Ibrahim left the country, Sharon returned to petitioner bringing along her two children by Ibrahim. Petitioner accepted her back and even considered the two illegitimate children as his own. Thereafter, on December 9, 1995, Sharon abandoned petitioner to join Ibrahim in Jordan with their two children. Since then, Sharon would only return to the country on special occasions. Thereafter, petitioner filed a petition seeking the declaration of nullity of his marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity, as defined in Article 36 of the Family Code, before the RTC of Makati City, Branch 149. Summons was effected by publication in the Pilipino Star Ngayon, a newspaper of general circulation in the country considering that Sharon did not reside and could not be found in the Philippines. Petitioner presented Dr. Natividad A. Dayan, who testified that she conducted a psychological evaluation of petitioner and found him to be conscientious, hardworking, diligent, a perfectionist who wants all tasks and projects completed up to the final detail and who exerts his best in whatever he does. On the other hand, Dr. Dayan declared that Sharon was suffering from Anti-Social Personality Disorder exhibited by her blatant display of infidelity; that she committed several indiscretions and had no capacity for remorse, even bringing with her the two children of Mustafa Ibrahim to live with petitioner. Such immaturity and irresponsibility in handling the marriage like her repeated acts of infidelity and abandonment of her family are indications of AntiSocial Personality Disorder amounting to psychological incapacity to perform the essential obligations of marriage. The trial court declared the marriage between the spouses Dedel null and void on the ground of psychological incapacity on the part of respondent. Respondent Republic of the Philippines, through the Solicitor General, appealed alleging that THE LOWER COURT ERRED IN RENDERING A DECISION WITHOUT A CERTIFICATION HAVING BEEN ISSUED BY THE SOLICITOR GENERAL AS REQUIRED IN THE MOLINA CASE. The Court of Appeals recalled and set aside the judgment of the trial court and ordered dismissal of the petition for declaration of nullity of marriage.Petitioners motion for reconsideration was denied in a Resolution dated January 8, 2002. Hence, the instant petition. ISSUE: Whether or not the totality of the evidence presented is enough to sustain a finding that respondent is psychologically incapacitated HELD: No. The petition is DENIED. The other forms of psychoses, if existing at the inception of marriage, like the state of a party being of unsound mind or concealment of drug addiction, habitual alcoholism, homosexuality or lesbianism, merely renders the marriage contract voidable pursuant to Article 46, Family Code. If drug addiction, habitual alcoholism, lesbianism or homosexuality should occur only during the marriage, they become mere grounds for legal separation under Article 55 of the Family Code. These provisions, however, do not necessarily preclude the possibility of these various circumstances being themselves, depending on the degree and severity of the disorder, indicia of psychological incapacity. Until further statutory and jurisprudential parameters are established, every circumstance that may have some bearing on the degree, extent and other conditions of that incapacity must, in every case, be carefully examined and evaluated so that no precipitate and indiscriminate nullity is peremptorily decreed. The well-considered opinion of psychiatrists, psychologists and persons with expertise in psychological disciplines might be helpful or even desirable. Respondents sexual infidelity can hardly qualify as being mentally or psychically ill to such an extent that she could not have known the obligations she was assuming, or knowing them, could not have given a valid assumption thereof. It appears that respondents promiscuity did not exist prior to or at the inception of the marriage. What is, in fact, disclosed by the records is a blissful marital union at its celebration, later affirmed in church rites, and which produced four children. Respondents sexual infidelity or perversion and abandonment do not by themselves constitute psychological incapacity within the contemplation of

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the Family Code. Neither could her emotional immaturity and irresponsibility be equated with psychological incapacity. It must be shown that these acts are manifestations of a disordered personality which make respondent completely unable to discharge the essential obligations of the marital state, not merely due to her youth, immaturity or sexual promiscuity. 64) CARATING-SIAYNGCO vs. SIAYNGCO G.R. NO. 158896. October 27, 2004 FACTS: Petitioner Juanita and respondent Manuel were married at civil rites on 27 June 1973 and before the Catholic Church on August 11 1973. After discovering that they could not have a child of their own, the couple decided to adopt a baby boy in 1977, who they named Jeremy. On 25 September 1997, or after twenty-four (24) years of married life together, respondent Manuel filed for the declaration of its nullity on the ground of psychological incapacity of petitioner Juanita. He alleged that all throughout their marriage, his wife exhibited an over domineering and selfish attitude towards him. In her Answer, petitioner Juanita alleged that respondent Manuel is still living with her at their conjugal home in Malolos, Bulacan; that he invented malicious stories against her so that he could be free to marry his paramour. The trial court denied respondent Manuels petition for declaration of nullity of his marriage to petitioner Juanita. The Court of Appeals reversed the RTC decision, relying mainly on the psychiatric evaluation of Dr. Garcia finding both Manuel and Juanita psychologically incapacitated. Hence, this petition for review on certiorari of the decision of the Court of Appeals. ISSUE: Whether or not the totality of evidence presented is enough to sustain a finding of psychological incapacity against petitioner Juanita and/or respondent Manuel. HELD: The petition for review is hereby granted. The presumption is always in favor of the validity of marriage. Semper praesumitur pro matrimonio. In the case at bar, respondent Manuel failed to prove that his wifes lack of respect for him, her jealousies and obsession with cleanliness, her outbursts and her controlling nature, and her inability to endear herself to his parents are grave psychological maladies that paralyze her from complying with the essential obligations of marriage. Neither is there any showing that these defects were already present at the inception of the marriage or that they are incurable. In fact, the psychiatrist reported that petitioner was psychologically capacitated to comply with the basic and essential obligations of marriage. The Court of Appeals committed reversible error in holding that respondent Manuel is psychologically incapacitated. The psychological report of Dr. Garcia, which is respondent Manuels own evidence, contains candid admissions of petitioner Juanita, the person in the best position to gauge whether or not her husband fulfilled the essential marital obligations of marriage. Sexual infidelity, per se, however, does not constitute psychological incapacity within the contemplation of the Family Code. It must be shown that respondent Manuels unfaithfulness is a manifestation of a disordered personality, which makes him completely unable to discharge the essential obligations of the marital state and not merely due to his ardent wish to have a child of his own flesh and blood. In herein case, respondent Manuel has admitted that: "I had [extra-marital] affairs because I wanted to have a child at that particular point The psychological report of respondent Manuels witness, Dr. Garcia, showed that the root cause of petitioner Juanitas behavior is traceable not from the inception of their marriage as required by law but from her experiences during the marriage, e.g., her in-laws disapproval of her as they wanted their son to enter the priesthood, her husbands philandering, admitted no less by him, and her inability to conceive. Thus, from the totality of the evidence adduced by both parties, we have been allowed a window into the Siayngcoss life and have perceived therefrom a simple case of a married couple drifting apart, becoming strangers to each other, with the husband consequently falling out of love and wanting a way out. An unsatisfactory marriage, however, is not a null and void marriage. Mere showing of irreconcilable differences and conflicting personalities in no wise constitutes psychological incapacity. 65) VILLALON VS. MA. CORAZON VILLALON G.R. No. 167206. November 18, 2005 FACTS: Petitioner was married to respondent for 18 years. Petitioner filed a petition for annulment of his marriage to respondent, citing psychological incapacity on his part as a ground. Petitioner alleged

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the psychological disorder as that of Narcissistic Histrionic Personality Disorder with Cassanova Complex. On July 12, 1996, petitioner Jaime filed a petition for the annulment of his marriage to respondent Ma. Corazon before the RTC of Pasig City on the ground of petitioners psychological incapacity which he claimed existed even prior to his marriage. According to petitioner, the manifestations of his psychological incapacity were: (a) his chronic refusal to maintain harmonious family relations and his lack of interest in having a normal married life; (b) his immaturity and irresponsibility in refusing to accept the essential obligations of marriage as husband to his wife; (c) his desire for other women and a life unchained from any spousal obligation; and (d) his false assumption of the fundamental obligations of companionship and consortium towards respondent. Petitioner thus prayed that his marriage to respondent be declared null and void ab initio. Respondent filed an answer denying petitioners allegations. She asserted that her 18year marriage to petitioner has been fruitful and characterized by joy, contentment and hopes for more growth in their relationship and that their marital squabbles were normal based on community standards. Petitioners success in his professional life aided him in performing his role as husband, father, and provider. Respondent claimed that petitioners commitment to his paternal and marital responsibilities was beyond reproach. On October 7, 1996, the trial court directed the prosecutor to conduct an investigation on whether there was collusion between the parties. As a result of the report, there was no collusion. The OSG opposed to the petition. Thereafter, trial on the merits ensued. Petitioner testified that he met respondent sometime in the early seventies when he applied for a job at Metrobank, where respondent was employed as a foreign exchange trader. They began dating in 1975 and had a romantic relationship soon thereafter. After going steady for about two years, petitioner and respondent were married at the San Pancracio Chapel in Paco, Manila on April 22, 1978. In the middle of 1993, petitioner decided to separate from respondent because their marriage reached a point where there was no longer any communication between them and their relationship became devoid of love, affection, support and respect due to his constant urge to see other women. Moreover, their relationship tended to be one-sided since respondent was unresponsive and hardly ever showed her love, needs, wants and emotions. Petitioner admitted that on certain occasions before his marriage, he had two girlfriends at the same time. He also saw other women even when he became engaged to and, later on, married respondent. Respondent learned of his affairs but reacted in a subdued manner. Petitioner surmised that it was respondents nature to be silent and withdrawn. In January 1994, petitioner left the conjugal abode and moved into an apartment located five to ten minutes away. Before he left, he and his wife spoke to their three children who, at that time, were 14, 8, and 6 years old, respectively. Petitioner consulted a child psychologist before talking to his children. He considered himself as a good and loving father and described his relationship with the children as great. Despite the separation, petitioner would regularly visit his children who stayed with him on alternate weekends, voluntarily gave monthly support to the children and paid for their tuition fees and also shouldered the childrens medical expenses as well as the maintenance and miscellaneous fees for the conjugal abode. Petitioner presented Dr. Natividad Dayan, a clinical psychologist, to testify on his alleged psychological disorder of Narcissistic Histrionic Personality Disorder with Casanova Complex. Dr. Dayan submitted a psychological report on both petitioner and respondent based on clinical interviews and psychological tests. Respondent testified that she first learned of her husbands infidelity in 1980. She discovered that he was having an affair with one of her friends who worked as a trader in her husbands company. The affair was cut short when the woman left for the United States to work. Eventually, she and petitioner were able to rebuild their relationship and overcome the crisis. When asked about the womanizing ways of her husband, respondent averred that she did not know whether her husbands acts could be deemed womanizing since there were only two instances of infidelity which occurred 13 years apart. She also theorized that petitioner wanted to have their marriage annulled so he could marry her old friend. She stated that she has not closed her doors to petitioner but the latter would have to give up his extra-marital relationship. To controvert the findings of petitioners expert witness, respondent presented a psychiatrist, Dr. Cecilia Villegas, who testified that Dr. Dayans findings were incomplete because a team

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approach was necessary in evaluating an individuals personality. An evaluation of ones psychological capacity requires the expertise of a psychiatrist and social worker. The trial court declared the marriage between petitioner and respondent null and void on the ground of psychological incapacity on the part of petitioner. Thereafter. The respondent and the OSG seasonably filed an appeal from the decision of the trial court. The Court of Appeals rendered a Decision reversed and set aside the trial courts decision. Contrary to the trial courts findings, the appellate court held that petitioner failed to prove the juridical antecedence, gravity and incurability of his alleged psychological incapacity. Petitioners sexual infidelity was made to appear as symptomatic of a grave psychological disorder when, in reality, the same merely resulted from a general dissatisfaction with the marriage. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration of the appellate courts decision but it was denied. Hence this petition. ISSUE: Whether or not the petitioner was indeed psychologically incapacitated to render his marital obligations HELD: The petition has no merit. The totality of the evidence in this case does not support a finding that petitioner is psychologically incapacitated to fulfill his marital obligations. The illness must be shown as downright incapacity or inability, not a refusal, neglect or difficulty, much less ill will. Sexual infidelity, by itself, is not sufficient proof that petitioner is suffering from psychological incapacity. It must be shown that the acts of unfaithfulness are manifestations of a disordered personality which make petitioner completely unable to discharge the essential obligations of marriage Petitioner failed to establish the incurability and gravity of his alleged psychological disorder. He simply fall out of love and has consequently refused to stay married to her. Refusal to comply with the essential obligations of marriage is not psychological incapacity within the meaning of law. G.R. No. 162368 July 17, 2006 FACTS: On February 20, 2001, the RTC of Pasig City, Branch 151 rendered a Decision denying the petition for declaration of nullity of petitioners marriage with Brix Ferraris. The trial court noted that suffering from epilepsy does not amount to psychological incapacity under Article 36 of the Civil Code and the evidence on record were insufficient to prove infidelity. Petitioners motion for reconsideration was denied in an Order dated April 20, 2001 where the trial court reiterated that there was no evidence that respondent is mentally or physically ill to such an extent that he could not have known the obligations he was assuming, or knowing them, could not have given valid assumption thereof. Petitioner appealed to the Court of Appeals, which affirmed in toto the judgment of the trial court on the basis that the evidence on record did not convincingly establish that respondent was suffering from psychological incapacity or that his defects were incurable and already present at the inception of the marriage. The Court of Appeals also found that Dr. Dayans testimony failed to establish the substance of respondents psychological incapacity; that she failed to explain how she arrived at the conclusion that the respondent has a mixed personality disorder; that she failed to clearly demonstrate that there was a natal or supervening disabling factor or an adverse integral element in respondents character that effectively incapacitated him from accepting and complying with the essential marital obligations. Petitioners motion for reconsideration was denied for lack of merit; thus, she filed a petition for review on certiorari with this Court. Petitioner filed the instant motion for reconsideration. The Court required respondent Brix Ferraris to file comment but failed to comply; thus, he is deemed to have waived the opportunity to file comment. Further, the Court directed the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) to comment on petitioners motion for reconsideration which it complied on March 2, 2006. After considering the arguments of both the petitioner and the OSG, the Court resolves to deny petitioners motion for reconsideration. ISSUE: Whether or not Brix is psychologically incapacitated as to render his marriage with Amy void. 66) A. ARMIDA PEREZ-FERRARIS VS. BRIX FERRARIS HELD: No. The Court found Brixs alleged mixed personality disorder, the"leaving-the-ho use" attitude whenever he and Amy quarreled, the violent

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tendencies during epileptic attacks, the sexual infidelity, the abandonment and lack of support, and his preference to spend more time with his band mates than his family, are not rooted on some debilitating psychological condition but a mere refusal or unwillingness to assume the essential obligations of marriage. A mere showing of irreconcilable differences and conflicting personalities in no wise constitute psychological incapacity; it is not enough to prove that the parties failed to meet their responsibilities and duties as married persons; it is essential that they must be shown to be incapable of doing so due to some psychological, not physical, illness. 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. 67) ZAMORA VS. CA and Norma ZAMORA G.R. NO. 141917. February 7, 2007 Facts: Bernardino Zamora and Norma Zamora were married on June 4, 1970. Their union was not blessed of a child. Two years after, Norma left the country and went to the US to work as a nurse. After two years she did come back in the Philippines and thereafter she made periodic visits until she was already a US citizen. Bernardino filed a complaint for declaration of nullity of marriage anchored on the alleged psychological incapacity of Norma. To support his position, he alleged that his wife was horrified by the mere thought of having children as evidenced by the fact that she had not borne him a child. Furthermore, he also alleged that she abandoned him by living in the US and that throughout their marriage they live together for not more than three years. He alleged that Art.36 of the Family Code provides that the marriage contracted by any party who at that time of the celebration, was psychologically incapacitated to comply with the marital obligations of the marriage, shall likewise be void even if such incapacity becomes manifest only after its solemnization and that one of the essential marital obligations is to procreate children through sexual cooperation which is the basic end of marriage. On the other hand, Norma denied that she refused to have a child. She portrayed herself as one who loves children as she is a nurse by profession and that she would from time to time borrow her husbands niece and nephews to care for them. Issue: Whether or not Norma was suffering from psychological incapacity, hence their marriage be declared void? Held: No. Norma was not psychologically incapacitated. Under the law, the facts alleged in the petition and the evidence presented, considered totality, should be sufficient to convince the court of the psychological incapacity of the party concerned. In the case at bar the petition filed by Bernardino was not sufficient as to substantiate his allegations that Norma is psychologically incapacitated. His allegations relating to her refusal to cohabit with him and to bear a child was strongly disputed, as the records undeniably bear out. Furthermore, the acts and behavior of Norma that Bernardino cited occurred during the marriage, and there is no proof that the former exhibited a similar predilection even before or the inception of the marriage. 68) DOMINGO vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. 104818. September 17, 1993 FACTS: Delia Soledad A. Domingo filed a petition on May 29, 1991 before the Regional Trial Court of Pasig entitled "Declaration of Nullity of Marriage and Separation of Property" against Roberto Domingo. The petition alleged among others that: they were married on November 29, 1976 at the YMCA Youth Center Bldg., as evidenced by a Marriage Contract Registry No. 1277K-76 with Marriage License issued at Carmona, Cavite; unknown to her, he had a previous marriage with one Emerlina dela Paz on April 25, 1969 which marriage is valid and still existing; she came to know of the prior marriage only sometime in 1983 when Emerlina dela Paz sued them for bigamy; from January 23, 1979 up to the present, she has been working in Saudi Arabia and she used to come to the Philippines only when she would avail of the one-month annual vacation leave granted by her foreign employer; since 1983 up to the present, he has been unemployed and completely dependent upon her for support and subsistence; out of her personal earnings, she purchased real and personal properties with a total

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amount of approximately P350,000.00, which are under the possession and administration of Roberto; sometime in June 1989, while on her one-month vacation, she discovered that he was cohabiting with another woman; she further discovered that he had been disposing of some of her properties without her knowledge or consent; she confronted him about this and thereafter appointed her brother Moises R. Avera as her attorney-in-fact to take care of her properties; he failed and refused to turn over the possession and administration of said properties to her brother/attorney-in-fact. The petition prayed that a temporary restraining order or a writ of preliminary injunction be issued enjoining Roberto from exercising any act of administration and ownership over said properties; their marriage be declared null and void and of no force and effect; and Delia Soledad be declared the sole and exclusive owner of all properties acquired at the time of their void marriage and such properties be placed under the proper management and administration of the attorney-in-fact. ISSUE: Whether or not a petition for judicial declaration of a void marriage is necessary. If in the affirmative, whether the same should be filed only for purposes of remarriage. HELD: Yes, a judicial declaration of a void marriage is necessary and it can be filed even if not for the purpose of remarriage. Under the law, parties to a marriage should not be allowed to assume that their marriage is void even if such be the fact but must first secure a judicial declaration of the nullity of their marriage before they can be allowed to marry again. Article 40 of the Family Code provides: "ART. 40.The absolute nullity of a previous marriage may be invoked for purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void." (n). That Article 40 as finally formulated included the significant clause denotes that such final judgment declaring the previous marriage void need not be obtained only for purposes of remarriage. Undoubtedly, one can conceive of other instances where a party might well invoke the absolute nullity of a previous marriage for purposes other than remarriage, such as in case of an action for liquidation, partition, distribution and separation of property between the erstwhile spouses, as well as an action for the custody and support of their common children and the delivery of the latter's presumptive legitimes. Therefore, in the instance where a party who has previously contracted a marriage which remains subsisting desires to enter into another marriage which is legally unassailable, he is required by law to prove that the previous one was an absolute nullity. But this he may do on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void. 69) BELTRAN vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES G.R. No. 137567. June 20, 2000 Facts: Meynardo Beltran and wife Charmaine E. Felix were married on June 16, 1973 at the Immaculate Concepcion Parish Church in Cubao, Quezon City. They were blessed with four children. After 24 years of marriage, Beltran filed a petition for nullity of marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity under Article 36 of the Family Code before the RTC of Quezon City. Charmaine Felix answer she alleged that it was Meyanard who abandoned the conjugal home and lived with a certain woman named Milagros Salting. Charmaine subsequently filed a criminal complaint for concubinage against Meynard and his paramour before the City Prosecutor's Office of Makati who, in a Resolution found probable cause and ordered the filing of an Information against them. The case, docketed as Criminal Case No. 236176, was filed before the MTC of Makati City. On March 20, 1998, Meynard filed a Motion to Defer Proceedings Including the Issuance of the Warrant of Arrest in the criminal case. He argued that the pendency of the civil case for declaration of nullity of his marriage posed a prejudicial question to the determination of the criminal case. Issue: Whether or not the pending case involving a declaration of nullity of marriage based on article 36 is a prejudicial question to a criminal action of concubinage involving identical parties. Held: No. It is not a prejudicial question. Under the law, the pendency of the case for declaration of nullity of petitioner's marriage is not a prejudicial question to the concubinage case. For a

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civil case to be considered prejudicial to a criminal action as to cause the suspension of the latter pending the final determination of the civil case, it must appear not only that the said civil case involves the same facts upon which the criminal prosecution would be based, but also that in the resolution of the issue or issues raised in the aforesaid civil action, the guilt or innocence of the accused would necessarily be determined. In the case at bar, the parties to the marriage should not be permitted to judge for themselves its nullity, for the same must be submitted to the judgment of the competent courts and only when the nullity of the marriage is so declared can it be held as void, and so long as there is no such declaration the presumption is that the marriage exists. Therefore, he who contracts a second marriage before the judicial declaration of nullity of the first marriage assumes the risk of being prosecuted for bigamy." Therefore, he who cohabits with a woman not his wife before the judicial declaration of nullity of the marriage assumes the risk of being prosecuted for concubinage. 70) MARBELA-BOBIS vs. ISAGANI BOBIS G.R. No. 138509, July 31, 2000 FACTS: On October 21, 1985, respondent contracted a first marriage with one Maria Dulce B. Javier. Without said marriage having been annulled, nullified or terminated, the same respondent contracted a second marriage with petitioner Imelda MarbellaBobis on January 25, 1996 and allegedly a third marriage with a certain Julia Sally Hernandez. Based on petitioner's complaint-affidavit, an information for bigamy was filed against respondent on February 25, 1998, which was docketed as Criminal Case No. Q98-75611 of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 226, Quezon City. Sometime thereafter, respondent initiated a civil action for the judicial declaration of absolute nullity of his first marriage on the ground that it was celebrated without a marriage license. Respondent then filed a motion to suspend the proceedings in the criminal case for bigamy invoking the pending civil case for nullity of the first marriage as a prejudicial question to the criminal case. The trial judge granted the motion to suspend the criminal case in an Order dated December 29, 1998. ISSUE: Whether the subsequent filing of a civil action for declaration of nullity of a previous marriage constitutes a prejudicial question to a criminal case for bigamy. HELD: No, it is not a prejudicial question. Under Article 40 of the Family Code, which was effective at the time of celebration of the second marriage, requires a prior judicial declaration of nullity of a previous marriage before a party may remarry. The clear implication of this is that it is not for the parties, particularly the accused, to determine the validity or invalidity of the marriage. Whether or not the first marriage was void for lack of a license is a matter of defense because there is still no judicial declaration of its nullity at the time the second marriage was contracted. It should be remembered that bigamy can successfully be prosecuted provided all its elements concur, two of which are a previous marriage and a subsequent marriage which would have been valid had it not been for the existence at the material time of the first marriage. Therefore, Isagani cannot be permitted to use his own malfeasance to defeat the criminal action against him. The court should then immediately proceed with the criminal case without waiting for the result of the civil case. 71) MERCADO vs. CONSUELO TAN G.R. No. 137110, August 1, 2000 FACTS: Ma. Consuelo Tan and Vincent Mercado were married in 1991. However, at the time of the marriage of Tan with Mercado, the latter was actually a married man, having been in lawful wedlock with Ma. Thelma Oliva on 1976. In the first marriage he have two children and in the second marriage he has one child. On October 5, 1992, a complaint for bigamy was filed by Tan against Mercado. A month later, a Petition for Declaration of Nullity of Marriage was filed by Mercado against Oliva. On May 6, 1993, the trial court declared the marriage of Mercado and Oliva as void ab initio. Nevertheless, the lower court found accused Mercado guilty of the crime of bigamy under Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code. The Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the lower court by stating that accused Mercado failed to comply with Article 40 of the Family Code.

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ISSUE: Whether or not accused Mercado is guilty of bigamy despite of his having obtained a judicial declaration of nullity of marriage? RULING: Yes, Mercado is guilty of bigamy. Under Article 40 of the Family Code and the rulings enunciated in Wiegel vs. Sempio-Diy and Domingo vs. Court of Appeals which expressly state that in order to re-marry, one must first obtain a judicial declaration of nullity of the previous marriage. In the case at bar, accused Mercado failed to comply with the requirement because he married Tan without first securing a judicial declaration of his marriage with Oliva. He only filed for such a month after he was charge with the crime of bigamy. Therefore, the crime of bigamy was already consummated when he contracted a second marriage while the first was still subsisting. The subsequent judicial declaration of the nullity of the first marriage was immaterial. 72) MORIGO V. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES GR No. 145226, February 6, 2004 Facts: Lucio Morigo and Lucia Barrete were boardmates four years.. After the school year 1977-1978 they lost contact with each other. Yet, after some time, when Lucia was in Singapore she sent a letter to Lucio, their friendship was rekindled. They became sweethearts and on 1986 Lucia returned to the Philippines. On 1990 they eventually got married. After their marriage celebration, Lucia once again left for Canada. After a year, Lucia filed with the Ontario Court a petition for divorce against Lucio which was granted on January 17, 1992. In October of the same year, Lucio married Maria Lumbago. Thereafter, he filed a petition for nullity of his marriage to Lucia on the ground that no marriage ceremony actually took place. In 1993, an Information for Bigamy was filed against Lucio. He moved for the suspension of the arraignment alleging that the civil case for judicial nullification of his marriage with Lucia posed a prejudicial question in the bigamy case. His motion was denied. Subsequently, Lucio was convicted by the Trial Court and on appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction of Bigamy. It ruled that what is sought to be punished by Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code is the act of contracting a second marriage before the first marriage had been dissolved. Issue: Whether or not Lucio is guilty of bigamy by contracting a marriage with Maria, considering that there was no marriage ceremony took place with his marriage with Lucia. Held: No, he is not guilty. Under the law, the first element of Bigamy is that the offender has been legally married and under the principle of retroactivity of a marriage being declared void ab initio, the two were never married "from the beginning." The contract of marriage is null; it bears no legal effect. In the case at bar, no marriage ceremony at all was performed by a duly authorized solemnizing officer. Lucio and Lucia Barrete merely signed a marriage contract on their own. The mere private act of signing a marriage contract bears no semblance to a valid marriage and thus, needs no judicial declaration of nullity. Legally speaking, Lucio was never married to Lucia Barrete. Thus, there is no first marriage to speak of. Therefore, Lucio is acquitted by the Supreme Court from the charge of Bigamy because Lucio was not married to Lucia at the time he contracted his marriage with Maria, 73) CALISTERIO vs. MARIETTA CALISTERIO G.R. No. 136467, April 6, 2000 Facts: On 24 April 1992, Teodorico Calisterio died intestate, leaving several parcels of land with an estimated value of P604,750.00. Teodorico was survived by his wife, Marietta Calisterio. Teodorico was the second husband of Marietta who had previously been married to James William Bounds. James Bounds disappeared without a trace on 11 February 1947. Teodorico and Marietta were married eleven years later, or on 08 May 1958, without Marietta having priorly secured a court declaration that James was presumptively dead.

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On 09 October 1992, Antonia Armas y Calisterio, a surviving sister of Teodorico, filed with the Regional Trial Court a petition entitled, "In the Matter of Intestate Estate of the Deceased Teodorico Calisterio y Cacabelos, Antonia Armas claiming to be the sole surviving heir of Teodorico Calisterio, and that the marriage between the latter and Marietta Espinosa Calisterio being allegedly bigamous and thereby null and void. Marietta opposed the petition. Marietta stated that her first marriage with James Bounds had been dissolved due to the latter's absence, his whereabouts being unknown, for more than eleven years before she contracted her second marriage with Teodorico. Contending to be the surviving spouse of Teodorico, she sought priority in the administration of the estate of the decedent. On 17 January 1996, the lower court handed down its decision in favor of petitioner Antonia and declared the latter as the sole heir of the estate of Teodorico Calisterio y Cacabelos. Respondent Marietta appealed the decision of the trial court to the Court of Appeals which ruled in her favor. Issue: Whether or not the second marriage, having been contracted during the regime of the Civil Code, should be deemed valid notwithstanding the absence of a judicial declaration of presumptive death of James Bounds. Held: The marriage between the deceased Teodorico and Marietta was solemnized on 08 May 1958. The law in force at that time was the Civil Code, not the Family Code which took effect only on 03 August 1988. Article 256 of the Family Code itself limited its retroactive governance only to cases where it thereby would not prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights in accordance with the Civil Code or other laws. Verily, the applicable specific provision in the instant controversy is Article 83 (2) of the New Civil Code which provides: Art. 83. Any marriage subsequently contracted by any person during the lifetime of the first spouse of such person with any person other than such first spouse shall be illegal and void from its performance, unless: (2) The first spouse had been absent for seven consecutive years at the time of the second marriage without the spouse present having news of the absentee being alive, or if the absentee, though he has been absent for less than seven years, is generally considered as dead and believed to be so by the spouse present at the time of contracting such subsequent marriage, or if the absentee is presumed dead according to articles 390 and 391. The marriage so contracted shall be valid in any of the three cases until declared null and void by a competent court. Under the foregoing provisions a judicial declaration of absence of the absentee spouse is not necessary as long as the prescribed period of absence is met. It is equally noteworthy that the marriage in these exceptional cases are, by the explicit mandate of Article 83, to be deemed valid "until declared null and void by a competent court." It follows that the burden of proof would be, in these cases, on the party assailing the second marriage. Therefore, it remained undisputed that Mariettas first husband, James Bounds, had been absent or had disappeared for more than eleven years before she entered into a second marriage in 1958 with the deceased Theodorico Calisterio. This second marriage, having been contracted during the regime of the civil code should thus be deemed valid. 74) REPUBLIC vs. NOLASCO 220 SCRA 21 FACTS: On 5 August 1988, respondent Gregorio Nolasco filed before the RTC of Antique a petition for the declaration of presumptive death of his wife Janet Monica Parker, invoking Article 41 of the Family Code. The petition prayed that respondent's wife be declared presumptively dead or, in the alternative, that the marriage be declared null and void. The Republic of the Philippines opposed the petition through the Provincial Prosecutor of Antique who had been deputized to assist the Solicitor-General in the instant case. The Republic argued, first, that Nolasco did not possess a "well-founded belief that the absent spouse was already dead," 2 and second, Nolasco's attempt to have his marriage annulled in the same proceeding was a "cunning attempt" to circumvent the law on marriage. During trial, respondent Nolasco testified that he was a seaman and that he had first met Janet Monica Parker, a British subject, in a bar in England during one of his ship's port calls. From that chance meeting onwards, Janet Monica Parker lived with respondent on his ship for six (6) months until they returned to respondent's hometown of San Jose, Antique after his seaman's contract expired. Respondent married Janet Monica Parker in San Jose, Antique, in Catholic rites officiated by Fr. Henry van Tilborg in the Cathedral of San Jose.

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Respondent further testified that after the marriage celebration, he obtained another employment contract as a seaman and left his wife with his parents in San Jose, Antique. Sometime in January 1983, while working overseas, respondent received a letter from his mother informing him that Janet Monica had given birth to his son. The same letter informed him that Janet Monica had left Antique. Respondent claimed he then immediately asked permission to leave his ship to return home. He arrived in Antique in November 1983. Respondent further testified that his efforts to look for her himself whenever his ship docked in England proved fruitless. He also stated that all the letters he had sent to his missing spouse at No. 38 Ravena Road, Allerton, Liverpool, England, the address of the bar where he and Janet Monica first met, were all returned to him. He also claimed that he inquired from among friends but they too had no news of Janet Monica. On cross-examination, respondent stated that he had lived with and later married Janet Monica Parker despite his lack of knowledge as to her family background. He insisted that his wife continued to refuse to give him such information even after they were married. He also testified that he did not report the matter of Janet Monica's disappearance to the Philippine government authorities. Respondent presented his mother, Alicia Nolasco, as his witness. She testified that her daughter-in-law Janet Monica had expressed a desire to return to England even before she had given birth to Gerry Nolasco. When asked why her daughter-in-law might have wished to leave Antique, respondent's mother replied that Janet Monica never got used to the rural way of life in San Jose, Antique. Alicia Nolasco also said that she had tried to dissuade Janet Monica from leaving as she had given birth to her son just fifteen days before, but when she (Alicia) failed to do so, she gave Janet Monica P22,000.00 for her expenses before she left for England. She further claimed that she had no information as to the missing person's present whereabouts.The trial court granted Nolasco's petition declaring Janet Monica Parker Nolasco as presumptively dead, without prejudice to her reappearance. The Republic appealed to the Court of Appeals contending that the trial court erred in declaring Janet Monica Parker presumptively dead because respondent Nolasco had failed to show that there existed a well founded belief for such declaration. The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court's decision. Hence this Petition for Review. ISSUE: Whether or not Nolasco has a well-founded belief that his wife is already dead. HELD: Four (4) requisites for the declaration of presumptive death under Article 41 of the Family Code: 1. That the absent spouse has been missing for four consecutive years, or two consecutive years if the disappearance occurred where there is danger of death under the circumstances laid down in Article 391, Civil Code; 2. That the present spouse wishes to remarry; 3. That the present spouse has a well-founded belief that the absentee is dead; and 4. That the present spouse files a summary proceeding for the declaration of presumptive death of the absentee. The Court believes that respondent Nolasco failed to conduct a search for his missing wife with such diligence as to give rise to a "well-founded belief" that she is dead. In the case at bar, the Court considers that the investigation allegedly conducted by respondent in his attempt to ascertain Janet Monica Parker's whereabouts is too sketchy to form the basis of a reasonable or well-founded belief that she was already dead. When he arrived in San Jose, Antique after learning of Janet Monica's departure, instead of seeking the help of local authorities or of the British Embassy, he secured another seaman's contract and went to London, a vast city of many millions of inhabitants, to look for her there. In Respondent's testimony, however, showed that he confused London for Liverpool and this casts doubt on his supposed efforts to locate his wife in England. The Court of Appeal's justification of the mistake, to wit: Well, while the cognoscente would readily know the geographical difference between London and Liverpool, for a humble seaman like Gregorio the two places could mean one place in England, the port where his ship docked and where he found Janet. Our own provincial folks, every time they leave home to visit relatives in Pasay City, Kalookan City, or Paraaque, would announce to friends and relatives, "We're going to Manila." This apparent error in naming of places of destination does not appear to be fatal. Is not well taken. There is no analogy between Manila and its neighboring cities, on one hand, and London and Liverpool, on the

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other, which, as pointed out by the Solicitor-General, are around three hundred fifty (350) kilometers apart. We do not consider that walking into a major city like Liverpool or London with a simple hope of somehow bumping into one particular person there which is in effect what Nolasco says he did can be regarded as a reasonably diligent search. The Court also views respondent's claim that Janet Monica declined to give any information as to her personal background even after she had married respondent 17 too convenient an excuse to justify his failure to locate her. The same can be said of the loss of the alleged letters respondent had sent to his wife which respondent claims were all returned to him. Respondent said he had lost these returned letters, under unspecified circumstances. Neither can this Court give much credence to respondent's bare assertion that he had inquired from their friends of her whereabouts, considering that respondent did not identify those friends in his testimony. The Court of Appeals ruled that since the prosecutor failed to rebut this evidence during trial, it is good evidence. But this kind of evidence cannot, by its nature, be rebutted. In any case, admissibility is not synonymous with credibility. As noted before, there are serious doubts to respondent's credibility. Moreover, even if admitted as evidence, said testimony merely tended to show that the missing spouse had chosen not to communicate with their common acquaintances, and not that she was dead. Respondent testified that immediately after receiving his mother's letter sometime in January 1983, he cut short his employment contract to return to San Jose, Antique. However, he did not explain the delay of nine (9) months from January 1983, when he allegedly asked leave from his captain, to November 1983 when be finally reached San Jose. Respondent, moreover, claimed he married Janet Monica Parker without inquiring about her parents and their place of residence. 19 Also, respondent failed to explain why he did not even try to get the help of the police or other authorities in London and Liverpool in his effort to find his wife. The circumstances of Janet Monica's departure and respondent's subsequent behavior make it very difficult to regard the claimed belief that Janet Monica was dead a well-founded one. The spouses should not be allowed, by the simple expedient of agreeing that one of them leave the conjugal abode and never to return again, to circumvent the policy of the laws on marriage. The Court notes that respondent even tried to have his marriage annulled before the trial court in the same proceeding. While the Court understands the need of respondent's young son, Gerry Nolasco, for maternal care, still the requirements of the law must prevail. Since respondent failed to satisfy the clear requirements of the law, his petition for a judicial declaration of presumptive death must be denied. In fine, respondent failed to establish that he had the well-founded belief required by law that his absent wife was already dead that would sustain the issuance of a court order declaring Janet Monica Parker presumptively dead. 74) REPUBLIC VS. LORINO G.R. No. 160258 January 19, 2005 FACTS: Respondent Gloria Bermudez-Lorino filed, On August 14, 2000, nine (9) years after she left her husband, a verified petition with the RTC under the rules on Summary Judicial Proceedings in the Family Law provided for in the Family Code, for a Court declaration that her husband is judicially presumed dead for the purpose of remarriage. She alleged that: A) she and FRANCISCO LORINO, JR. were married on June 12, 1987 and begot three (3) children. B) Before they got married she was unaware that her husband was a habitual drinker, possessed with violent character/attitude, and had the propensity to go out with friends to the extent of being unable to engage in any gainful work. C) Because of her husbands violent character, Gloria found it safer to leave him behind and decided to go back to her parents together with her three (3) children. D) From the time of her physical separation from her husband in 1991, Gloria has not heard of him at all. She had absolutely no communications with him, or with any of his relatives. She believes that he is already dead and is now seeking through this petition for a Court declaration that her husband is judicially presumed dead for the purpose of remarriage. On August 28, 2000, the RTC issued an order directing, the publication of the petition in a newspaper of general circulation. On September 16, 2000, the order for hearing was published in a newspaper of general circulation in this province once a week for three consecutive weeks and be posted in the bulletin boards of the Hall of Justice and the Municipal Hall, San Mateo, Rizal. Finding the said petition to be sufficient in form and substance, the same is hereby set for hearing before the Court on September 18, 2000. The trial court

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ruled declaring the presumptive death/absence of Francisco Lorino, Jr. pursuant to Art. 41 of the New Family Code but subject to all restrictions and conditions provided therein. The judgment being immediately final and executory under the provisions of Article 247 of the Family Code, thus: Art. 247. The judgment of the court shall be immediately final and executory, Despite the decision of the trial court having become final, the Office of the Solicitor General, nevertheless filed a Notice of Appeal. The RTC had the records elevated to the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals, treating the case as an ordinary appealed case under Rule 41 of the Revised Rules on Civil Procedure, denied the Republics appeal and accordingly affirmed the appealed decision. ISSUE: Whether or not the Court of Appeals duly acquired jurisdiction over the appeal on a final and executory judgment of the Regonal Trial Court. HELD: No. In Summary Judicial Proceedings under the Family Code, there is no reglementary period within which to perfect an appeal, precisely because judgments rendered thereunder, by express provision of Section 247, Family Code, are "immediately final and executory". It was erroneous, therefore, on the part of the RTC to give due course to the Republics appeal and order the transmittal of the entire records of the case to the Court of Appeals. An appellate court acquires no jurisdiction to review a judgment which, by express provision of law, is immediately final and executory. The right to appeal is not a natural right nor is it a part of due process, for it is merely a statutory privilege." Since, by express mandate of Article 247 of the Family Code, all judgments rendered in summary judicial proceedings in Family Law are "immediately final and executory", the right to appeal was not granted to any of the parties therein. The Republic of the Philippines, as oppositor in the petition for declaration of presumptive death, should not be treated differently. It had no right to appeal the RTC decision of November 7, 2001. Nothing is more settled in law than that when a judgment becomes final and executory it becomes immutable and unalterable. The same may no longer be modified in any respect, even if the modification is meant to correct what is perceived to be an erroneous conclusion of fact or law, and whether made by the highest court of the But, if only to set the records straight and for the future guidance of the bench and the bar, let it be stated that the RTCs decision dated November 7, 2001, was immediately final and executory upon notice to the parties. It was erroneous for the OSG to file a notice of appeal, and for the RTC to give due course thereto. The Court of Appeals acquired no jurisdiction over the case, and should have dismissed the appeal outright on that ground. 76) TY VS. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. NO. 127406. November 27, 2000 FACTS: As shown in the records of the case, private respondent married Anna Maria Regina Villanueva in a civil ceremony on March 29, 1977, in Manila. Then they had a church wedding on August 27, 1977. However, on August 4, 1980, the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court of Quezon City declared their marriage null and void ab initio for lack of a valid marriage license. The church wedding on August 27, 1977, was also declared null and void ab initio for lack of consent of the parties. Even before the decree was issued nullifying his marriage to Anna Maria, private respondent wed Ofelia P. Ty, herein petitioner, on April 4, 1979, in ceremonies officiated by the judge of the City Court of Pasay. On April 4, 1982, they also had a church wedding in Makati, Metro Manila. Private respondent filed a petition, which alleged that his marriage with petitioner was void for lack of marriage license and his marriage with Anne Maria was still subsisting. ISSUE: Whether or not nullity of first marriage is required before obtaining 2nd marriage. HELD: In Wiegel v. Sempio-Diy (1986), the Court held that there is a need for a judicial declaration of nullity of a void marriage. In Wiegel, Lilia married Maxion in 1972. In 1978, she married another man, Wiegel. Wiegel filed a petition with the Juvenile Domestic Relations Court to declare his marriage to Lilia as void on the ground of her previous valid marriage. The Court, expressly relying on Consuegra, concluded that: There is likewise no need of introducing evidence about the existing prior marriage of her first husband at the time they married each other, for then such a marriage though void still needs according to this Court a judicial declaration (citing Consuegra) of such fact and for all legal intents and purposes she would still be regarded as a married woman at the

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time she contracted her marriage with respondent Karl Heinz Wiegel; accordingly, the marriage of petitioner and respondent would be regarded VOID under the law. At any rate, the confusion under the Civil Code was put to rest under the Family Code. Our rulings in Gomez, Consuegra, and Wiegel were eventually embodied in Article 40 of the Family Code. Article 40 of said Code expressly required a judicial declaration of nullity of marriage Art. 40. The absolute nullity of a previous marriage may be invoked for purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void. In Terre v. Terre (1992) the Court, applying Gomez, Consuegra and Wiegel, categorically stated that a judicial declaration of nullity of a void marriage is necessary. Thus, we disbarred a lawyer for contracting a bigamous marriage during the subsistence of his first marriage. He claimed that his first marriage in 1977 was void since his first wife was already married in 1968. We held that Atty. Terre should have known that the prevailing case law is that for purposes of determining whether a person is legally free to contract a second marriage, a judicial declaration that the first marriage was null and void ab initio is essential. In the present case, the second marriage of private respondent was entered into in 1979, before Wiegel. At that time, the prevailing rule was found in Odayat, Mendoza and Aragon. The first marriage of private respondent being void for lack of license and consent, there was no need for judicial declaration of its nullity before he could contract a second marriage. In this case, therefore, we conclude that private respondents second marriage to petitioner is valid. 77) CARINO vs. CARINO 351 SCRA 131 FACTS: SPO4 Santiago S. Carino contracted two marriages during his lifetime, the first was on June 20, 1969, with petitioner Susan Nicdao, with whom he had two children, and the second was on November 10, 1992, with respondent Susan Yee and had no children at all in their 10 years of cohabitation. On November 23, 1992, SPO4 Santiago Carino passed away in the care of Susan Yee who paid the medical and burial expenses. Both petitioner and respondent filed claims for monetary benefits and financial assistance pertaining to the deceased from various government agencies, petitioner was able to collect a total of P146,000.00 and respondent has collected P21,000.00 On December 14, 1993, respondent filed the instant case for the collection of money against petitioner to return to respondent at least one half of the money she has collected from the government agencies. Petitioner failed to file her answer and was declared in default. Respondent then admitted that her marriage with the deceased took place during the subsistence of, and without the judicial declaration of nullity of the 1st marriage. She also claimed that she was not aware that the deceased has a previous marriage and only found out when petitioner introduced herself as the wife. To bolster her action for collection of money, respondent contended that the marriage of petitioner with the deceased is void ab initio because the same was solemnized without the required marriage license. In support thereof, respondent presented: 1) the marriage certificate of the deceased and the petitioner which bears no marriage license number, and 2) a certification dated March 9, 1994, from the Local Civil Registrar of San Juan, Metro Manila. RTC ruled in favor of respondent. And on appeal, CA affirmed the decision of the lower court in toto. Hence, the instant petition. ISSUE: Whether or not the two marriages contracted by the deceased are valid HELD: Under Article 40 of the Family Code, the absolute nullity of a previous marriage may be invoked for purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void. Meaning, where the absolute nullity of a previous marriage is sought to be invoked for the purposes of contracting a second marriage, the sole basis acceptable by law, for said projected marriage to be free from legal infirmity, is a final judgment declaring the previous marriage void. However, for purposes other than remarriage, no judicial action is necessary to declare a marriage an absolute nullity. In the case at bar, there is no question that the marriage of petitioner and deceased does not fall within the marriages exempt from the marriage license requirement. A marriage license, therefore, was indispensible to the validity of their marriage. Such being the case, the presumed validity of the marriage of petitioner and deceased has been sufficiently overcome. It then became the burden of petitioner to prove that their marriage is valid and that they secured the valid marriage license. It does not follow from the foregoing

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disposition , however, that since the marriage of petitioner and the deceased is declared void ab initio, the death benefits under the scrutiny would now be awarded to respondent. Accordingly, the declaration in the instant case of nullity of the previous marriage of the deceased and the petitioner does not validate the second marriage of the deceased with respondent. The fact remains that their marriage was solemnize without first obtaining a judicial decree declaring the marriage of petitioner and the deceased void. Hence, the marriage of respondent and the deceased is likewise, void ab initio. As to the death benefits that the deceased obtained from the government agencies, it should be given to his legal heirs as it was declared an intestate succession. The children from the first marriage shall be the ones obtaining the said benefits.

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IX. VOIDABLE MARRIAGES 78) ANAYA vs. PALAROAN 36 SCRA 97 FACTS: Plaintiff Aurora and defendant Fernando were married on 4 December 1953; that defendant Fernando filed an action for annulment of the marriage on 7 January 1954 on the ground that his consent was obtained through force and intimidation; that judgment was rendered therein on 23 September 1959 dismissing the complaint of Fernando, upholding the validity of the marriage and granting Aurora's counterclaim; that (per paragraph IV) while the amount of the counterclaim was being negotiated "to settle the judgment," Fernando had divulged to Aurora that several months prior to their marriage he had pre-marital relationship with a close relative of his; and that "the non-divulgement to her of the aforementioned pre-marital secret on the part of defendant that definitely wrecked their marriage, which apparently doomed to fail even before it had hardly commenced ... frank disclosure of which, certitude precisely precluded her, the Plaintiff herein from going thru the marriage that was solemnized between them constituted 'FRAUD', in obtaining her consent, within the contemplation of No. 4 of Article 85 of the Civil Code" (sic) (Record on Appeal, page 3). She prayed for the annulment of the marriage and for moral damages. Failing in its attempt to have the parties reconciled, the court set the case for trial on 26 August 1966 but it was postponed. Thereafter, while reviewing the expendiente, the court realized that Aurora's allegation of the fraud was legally insufficient to invalidate her marriage. The court dismissed the complaint. ISSUE: Whether or not the non-disclosure to a wife by her husband of his pre-marital relationship with another woman is a ground for annulment of marriage. HELD: We must agree with the lower court that it is not. For fraud as a vice of consent in marriage, which may be a cause for its annulment, comes under Article 85, No. 4, of the Civil Code, which provides: ART. 85. A marriage may be annulled for any of the following causes, existing at the time of the marriage: xxx xxx xxx (4) That the consent of either party was obtained by fraud, unless such party afterwards, with full knowledge of the facts constituting the fraud, freely cohabited with the other as her husband or his wife, as the case may be; This fraud, as vice of consent, is limited exclusively by law to those kinds or species of fraud enumerated in Article 86, as follows: ART. 86. Any of the following circumstances shall constitute fraud referred to in number 4 of the preceding article: (1) Misrepresentation as to the identity of one of the contracting parties; (2) Non-disclosure of the previous conviction of the other party of a crime involving moral turpitude, and the penalty imposed was imprisonment for two years or more; (3) Concealment by the wife of the fact that at the time of the marriage, she was pregnant by a man other than her husband. No other misrepresentation or deceit as to character, rank, fortune or chastity shall constitute such fraud as will give grounds for action for the annulment of marriage. The intention of Congress to confine the circumstances that can constitute fraud as ground for annulment of marriage to the foregoing three cases may be deduced from the fact that, of all the causes of nullity enumerated in Article 85, fraud is the only one given special treatment in a subsequent article within the chapter on void and voidable marriages. If its intention were otherwise, Congress would have stopped at Article 85, for, anyway, fraud in general is already mentioned therein as a cause for annulment. But Article 86 was also enacted, expressly and specifically dealing with "fraud referred to in number 4 of the preceding article," and proceeds by enumerating the specific frauds (misrepresentation as to identity, non-disclosure of a previous conviction, and concealment of pregnancy), making it clear that Congress intended to exclude all other frauds or deceits. To stress further such intention, the enumeration of the specific frauds was followed by the interdiction: "No other misrepresentation or deceit as to character, rank, fortune or chastity shall constitute such fraud as will give grounds for action for the annulment of marriage." Non-disclosure of a husband's pre-marital relationship with another woman is not one of the enumerated circumstances that would constitute a ground for annulment; and it is further excluded by the last paragraph of the article, providing that "no other misrepresentation or deceit as to ... chastity" shall give ground for an action to annul a marriage. While a woman may detest such non-disclosure of premarital lewdness or feel having been thereby

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cheated into giving her consent to the marriage, nevertheless the law does not assuage her grief after her consent was solemnly given, for upon marriage she entered into an institution in which society, and not herself alone, is interested. The lawmaker's intent being plain, the Court's duty is to give effect to the same, whether it agrees with the rule or not. On the merits of this second fraud charge, it is enough to point out that any secret intention on the husband's part not to perform his marital duties must have been discovered by the wife soon after the marriage: hence her action for annulment based on that fraud should have been brought within four years after the marriage. Since appellant's wedding was celebrated in December of 1953, and this ground was only pleaded in 1966, it must be declared already barred. 79) AQUINO vs. DELIZO 109 Phil. 21 FACTS: This is a petition for certiorari to review a decision of the Court of Appeals affirming that of the Court of First Instance of Rizal which dismissed petitioner's complaint for annulment of his marriage with respondent Conchita Delizo. The dismissed complaint, which was filed on September 6, 1955, was based on the ground of fraud, it being alleged, among other things, that respondent, at the date of her marriage to petitioner Aquino, on December 27, 1954, concealed from the latter that fact that she was pregnant by another man, and sometime in April, 1955, or about four months after their marriage, gave birth to a child. In her answer, defendant claimed that the child was conceived out of lawful wedlock between her and the plaintiff. At the trial, the attorney's for both parties appeared and the court a quo ordered Assistant Provincial Fiscal Jose Goco to represent the State in the proceedings to prevent collusion. Only the plaintiff however, testified and the only documentary evidence presented was the marriage contract between the parties. Defendant neither appeared nor presented any evidence despite the reservation made by her counsel that he would present evidence on a later date. On June 16, 1956, the trial court, noting that no birth certificate was presented to show that the child was born within 180 days after the marriage between the parties, and holding that concealment of pregnancy as alleged by the plaintiff does not constitute such fraud that would annul a marriage, dismissed the complaint. Through a verified "petition to reopen for reception of additional evidence", plaintiff tried to present the certificates of birth and delivery of the child born of the defendant on April 26, 1955, which documents, according to him, he had failed to secure earlier and produce before the trial court thru excusable negligence. The petition, however, was denied. On appeal to the Court of Appeals, that court held that there has been excusable neglect in plaintiff's inability to present the proof of the child's birth, through her birth certificate, and for that reason the court a quo erred in denying the motion for reception of additional evidence. On the theory, however, that it was not impossible for plaintiff and defendant to have had sexual intercourse during their engagement so that the child could be their own, and finding unbelievable plaintiff's claim that he did not notice or even suspect that defendant was pregnant when he married her, the appellate court, nevertheless, affirmed the dismissal of the complaint. Plaintiff filed a motion praying that the decision be reconsidered, or, if such reconsideration be denied, that the case be remanded to the lower court for new trial. The Court of Appeals denied the motion. From that order, the plaintiff brought the case to this Court thru the present petition for certiorari. ISSUE: Whether or not the concealment by the wife of the fact that at the time of the marriage, she was pregnant by a man other than her husband constitutes fraud and is ground for annulment of marriage. HELD: The court held that the dismissal of plaintiff's complaint cannot be sustained. Under the new Civil Code, concealment by the wife of the fact that at the time of the marriage, she was pregnant by a man other than her husband constitutes fraud and is ground for annulment of marriage. The defendant wife was alleged to be only more than four months pregnant at the time of her marriage to plaintiff. At that stage, we are not prepared to say that her pregnancy was readily apparent, especially since she was "naturally plump" or fat as alleged by plaintiff. According to medical authorities, even on the 5th month of pregnancy, the enlargement of a woman's abdomen is still below the umbilicus, that is to say, the enlargement is limited to the lower part of the abdomen so that it is

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hardly noticeable and may, if noticed, be attributed only to fat formation on the lower part of the abdomen. It is only on the 6th month of pregnancy that the enlargement of the woman's abdomen reaches a height above the umbilicus, making the roundness of the abdomen more general and apparent. If, as claimed by plaintiff, defendant is "naturally plump", he could hardly be expected to know, merely by looking, whether or not she was pregnant at the time of their marriage more so because she must have attempted to conceal the true state of affairs. Even physicians and surgeons, with the aid of the woman herself who shows and gives her subjective and objective symptoms, can only claim positive diagnosis of pregnancy in 33% at five months. and 50% at six months. The appellate court also said that it was not impossible for plaintiff and defendant to have had sexual intercourse before they got married and therefore the child could be their own. This statement, however, is purely conjectural and finds no support or justification in the record. Upon the other hand, the evidence sought to be introduced at the new trial, taken together with what has already been adduced would, in our opinion, be sufficient to sustain the fraud alleged by plaintiff. The Court of Appeals should, therefore, not have denied the motion praying for new trial simply because defendant failed to file her answer thereto. Such failure of the defendant cannot be taken as evidence of collusion, especially since a provincial fiscal has been ordered to represent the Government precisely to prevent such collusion. As to the veracity of the contents of the motion and its annexes, the same can best be determined only after hearing evidence. In the circumstance, we think that justice would be better served if a new trial were ordered. 80) JIMENEZ vs. REPUBLIC 109 PHIL 273 FACTS: The plaintiff Joel Jimenez prays for a decree annulling his marriage to the defendant Remedios Cazares contracted on 3 August 1950 before a judge of the municipal court of Zamboanga City, upon the ground that the office of her genitals or vagina was to small to allow the penetration of a male organ or penis for copulation; that the condition of her genitals as described above existed at the time of marriage and continues to exist; and that for that reason he left the conjugal home two nights and one day after they had been married. The wife was summoned and served a copy of the complaint. She did not file an answer. On 29 September 1956, pursuant to the provisions of article 88 of the Civil Code, the Court directed the city attorney of Zamboanga to inquire whether there was a collusion, to intervene for the State to see that the evidence for the plaintiff is not a frame-up, concocted or fabricated. On 17 December 1956 the Court entered an order requiring the defendant to submit to a physical examination by a competent lady physician to determine her physical capacity for copulation and to submit, within ten days from receipt of the order, a medical certificate on the result thereof. On 14 March 1957 the defendant was granted additional five days from notice to comply with the order of 17 December 1956 with warning that her failure to undergo medical examination and submit the required doctor's certificate would be deemed lack of interest on her part in the case and that judgment upon the evidence presented by her husband would be rendered. After hearing, at which the defendant was not present, on 11 April 1957 the Court entered a decree annulling the marriage between the plaintiff and the defendant. The city attorney filed a motion for reconsideration of the decree thus entered, upon the ground, among others, that the defendant's impotency has not been satisfactorily established as required by law; that she had not been physically examined because she had refused to be examined; that instead of annulling the marriage the Court should have punished her for contempt of court and compelled her to undergo a physical examination and submit a medical certificate; and that the decree sought to be reconsidered would open the door to married couples, who want to end their marriage to collude or connive with each other by just alleging impotency of one of them. He prayed that the complaint be dismissed or that the wife be subjected to a physical examination. Pending resolution of his motion, the city attorney timely appealed from the decree. On 13 May 1957 the motion for reconsideration was denied. ISSUE: Whether or not the marriage in question may be annulled on the strength only of the lone testimony of the husband who claimed and testified that his wife was and is impotent. HELD: The law specifically enumerates the legal grounds, that must be proved to exist by indubitable evidence, to annul a marriage. In the case at bar, the annulment of the marriage in question was decreed upon the sole testimony of the husband who was expected to give testimony tending or aiming at

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securing the annulment of his marriage he sought and seeks. Whether the wife is really impotent cannot be deemed to have been satisfactorily established, because from the commencement of the proceedings until the entry of the decree she had abstained from taking part therein. Although her refusal to be examined or failure to appear in court show indifference on her part, yet from such attitude the presumption arising out of the suppression of evidence could not arise or be inferred because women of this country are by nature coy, bashful and shy and would not submit to a physical examination unless compelled to by competent authority. This the Court may do without doing violence to and infringing in this case is not selfincrimination. She is not charged with any offense. She is not being compelled to be a witness against herself. "Impotency being an abnormal condition should not be presumed. The presumption is in favor of potency." The lone testimony of the husband that his wife is physically incapable of sexual intercourse is insufficient to tear asunder the ties that have bound them together as husband and wife. The decree appealed from is set aside and the case remanded to the lower court for further proceedings in accordance with this decision, without pronouncement as to costs.

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X. LEGAL SEPARATION 81) DE OCAMPO vs. FLORENCIANO G.R. No. L-13553, February 23, 1960 FACTS: In 1938, Jose and Serafina were married and lived together as husband and wife. They were blessed of several children who are now living with plaintiff. In March, 1951, Jose discovered on several occasions that Serafina was maintaining illicit relations with Jose Arcalas. For this reason, Jose sent his wife Serafina to Manila in June 1951 to study beauty culture, where she stayed for a year. However, Jose discovered that his wife, while in Manila was going out with several other men, aside from Jose Arcalas. After Serafina finished her study in 1952, she and her husband lived separately. On June 18, 1955, Jose surprised his wife in the act of having illicit relations with another man by the name of Nelson Orzame. Jose signified his intention of filing a petition for legal separation, to which Serafina agreed provided she is will not be charged with adultery. On July 5, 1955, a petition for legal separation was filed by Jose in conformity with the condition requested by Serafina. The Court of Appeals found that in the night of June 18, 1955, the husband upon discovering the illicit happening has expressed his wish to file a petition for legal separation and defendant readily agreed to such filing. And when she was questioned by the Fiscal upon orders of the court, she reiterated her conformity to the legal separation even as she admitted having had sexual relations with one Nelson Orzame. Interpreting these facts virtually to mean a confession of judgment the Appellate Court declared that under Art. 101, legal separation could not be decreed. ISSUE: Whether or not the committed a reversible error. appellate court evidence of the adultery independently of such statement, the decree may and should be granted, since it would not be based on her confession, but upon evidence presented by the plaintiff. What the law prohibits is a judgment based exclusively or mainly on defendant's confession. If a confession defeats the action ipso facto, any defendant who opposes the separation will immediately confess judgment, purposely to prevent it. The mere circumstance that defendants told the Fiscal that she "like also" to be legally separated from her husband, is no obstacle to the successful prosecution of the action. When she refused to answer the complaint, she indicated her willingness to be separated. Yet, the law does not order the dismissal. Allowing the proceeding to continue, it takes precautions against collusion, which implies more than consent or lack of opposition to the agreement. 82) BROWN vs. JUANITA YAMBAO G.R. No. L-10699, October 18, 1957 FACTS: William H. Brown filed suit in the Court of First Instance of Manila to obtain legal separation from his lawful wife Juanita Yambao. He alleged under oath that while interned by the Japanese invaders, from 1942 to 1945, at the University of Sto. Tomas internment camp, his wife engaged in adulterous relations with one Carlos Field of whom she begot a baby girl that Brown learned of his wifes misconduct only in 1945, upon his release from internment; that thereafter the spouse lived separately and later executed a document liquidating their conjugal partnership and assigning certain properties to the erring wife as her share. The complaint prayed for confirmation of the liquidation agreement; for custody of the children issued of the marriage; that the defendant be declared disqualified to succeed the plaintiff; and for their remedy as might be just and equitable. Upon petition of the plaintiff, the court subsequently declared the wife in default, for failure to answer in due time, despite service of summons; and directed the City Fiscal or his representatives to investigate, in accordance with Article 101 of the Civil Code, whether or not a collusion exists between the parties and to report to this Court the result of his investigation within fifteen (15) days from receipt of copy of this order. The City Fiscal or his representative is also directed to intervene in the case in behalf of the State. As ordered, Assistant City Fiscal Rafael Jose appeared at the trial, and cross-examined plaintiff

RULING: Yes. As we understand the article, it does not exclude, as evidence, any admission or confession made by the defendant outside of the court. It merely prohibits a decree of separation upon a confession of judgment. Confession of judgment usually happens when the defendant appears in court and confesses the right of plaintiff to judgment or files a pleading expressly agreeing to the plaintiff's demand. Yet, even supposing that the above statement of defendant constituted practically a confession of judgment, inasmuch as there is

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Brown. His questions (strenuously objected to by Brown's counsel) elicited the fact that after liberation, Brown had lived maritally with another woman and had begotten children by her. Thereafter, the court rendered judgment denying the legal separation asked, on the ground that, while the wife's adultery was established, Brown had incurred in a misconduct of similar nature that barred his right of action under Article 100 of the new Civil Code. ISSUE: Whether or not the court erred in permitting the Assistant Fiscal Rafel Jose of Manila to act as counsel for the defendant, who defaulted. RULING: NO. Appellant Brown argues that in cross-examining him with regard to his marital relation with Lilia Deito, who was not his wife, the Assistant Fiscal acted as counsel for the defaulting wife, "when the power of the prosecuting officer is limited to finding out whether or not there is collusion, and if there is no collusion, which is the fact in the case at bar, to intervene for the state which is not the fact in the instant case, the truth of the matter being that he intervened for Juanita Yambao, the defendantappellee, who is private citizen and who is far from being the state. The court below also found, and correctly held that the appellant's action was already barred, because Brown did not petition for legal separation proceedings until ten years after he learned of his wife's adultery, which was upon his release from internment in 1945. Under Article 102 of the new Civil Code, action for legal separation can not be filed except within one (1) year from and after the plaintiff became cognizant of the cause and within five years from and after the date when such cause occurred. Appellant's brief does not even contest the correctness of such findings and conclusion. It is true that the wife has not interposed prescription as a defense. Nevertheless, the courts can take cognizance thereof, because actions seeking a decree of legal separation, or annulment of marriage, involve public interest and it is the policy of our law that no such decree be issued if any legal obstacles thereto appear upon the record. 83) LERMA vs. CA G.R. No. L-33352 December 20, 1974 FACTS: Petitioner Lerma and respondent Diaz are husband and wife. Petitioner filed a complaint for adultery against the respondent and a certain Teodoro Ramirez. Respondent a complaint against the petitioner for legal separation and/or separation of properties, custody of their children and support, with an urgent petition for support pendente lite for her and their youngest son, Gregory, who was then and until now is in her custody. The respondent's complaint for legal separation is based on two grounds: concubinage and attempt against her life.The petitioner filed his opposition to the respondent's application for support pendente lite, setting up as defense te adultery charge he had filed against the respondent.Judge Luciano of CFI of Rizal granted the respondent's application for support pendente lite to the following effect: (1) the respondent was declared entitled to support pendente lite from the date of the filing of the complaint; and (2) the amount of such monthly support was reduced from P2,250.00 to P1,820.00. Petitioner appealed to the Court of Appeals and requested for prohibition and preliminary injunction to annul the aforementioned orders. Court of Appeals gave due course to the petition and issued a writ of preliminary injunction to stop Judge Luciano from enforcing said orders. Moreover, on opposition of the respondent , the Court of Appeals dismissed such petition of the petitioner. ISSUE: Whether or not adultery is a good defense against the respondent's claim for support pendente lite. RULING: Yes. The probable failure of the respondent's suit for legal separation can be foreseen since she is not an innocent spouse, having been convicted of adultery by the Court of First Instance. It is true that the judgment of conviction is on appeal in the Court of Appeals, but the same undoubtedly satisfies the standard of provisional showing set by the aforesaid Rule. If legal separation cannot be claimed by the guilty spouse in the first place, the fact that an action for that purpose is filed anyway should not be permitted to be used as a means to obtain support pendente lite, which, without such action, would be denied on the strength of the decisions of this Court recognizing adultery as a good defense. Otherwise, as pointed out by the petitioner, all that an erring spouse has to do to circumvent such defense would

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be to file a suit for legal separation no matter how groundless. The right to separate support or maintenance, even from the conjugal partnership property, presupposes the existence of a justifiable cause for the spouse claiming such right to live separately. This is implicit in Article 104 of the Civil Code, which states that after the filing of the petition for legal separation the spouses shall be entitled to live separately from each other. A petition in bad faith, such as that filed by one who is himself or herself guilty of an act which constitutes a ground for legal separation at the instance of the other spouse, cannot be considered as within the intendment of the law granting separate support. In fact under Article 303 of the same Code the obligation to give support shall cease "when the recipient, be he a forced heir or not, has committed some act which gives rise to disinheritance;" and under Article 921 one of the causes for disinheriting a spouse is "when the spouse has given cause for legal separation." The loss of the substantive right to support in such a situation is incompatible with any claim for support pendente lite. 84) BUGAYONG vs. GINEZ G.R. No. L-10033, December 28, 1956 FACTS: Benjamin Bugayong, a serviceman in the United States Navy, was married to defendant Leonila Ginez on August 27, 1949, at Asingan, Pangasinan, while on leave. Immediately after their marriage, the couple lived with their sisters who later moved to Sampaloc, Manila. After some time, or about July, 1951, Leonila Ginez left the dwelling of her sister-inlaw and informed her husband by letter that she had gone to reside with her mother in Asingan, Pangasinan, from which place she later moved to Dagupan City to study in a local college there. As early as July, 1951, Benjamin Bugayong began receiving letters from Valeriana Polangco and some from anonymous writers informing him of alleged acts of infidelity of his wife which he did not even care to mention. In August, 1952, plaintiff went to Asingan, Pangasinan, and sought for his wife whom he met in the house of one Mrs. Malalang, defendant's godmother. She came along with him and both proceeded to the house of Pedro Bugayong, a cousin of the plaintiff-husband, where they stayed and lived for 2 nights and 1 day as husband and wife. Then they repaired to the plaintiff's house and again passed the night therein as husband and wife. On the second day, Benjamin Bugayong tried to verify from his wife the truth of the information he received that she had committed adultery but Leonila, instead of answering his query, merely packed up and left, which he took as a confirmation of the acts of infidelity imputed on her. After that and despite such belief, plaintiff exerted efforts to locate her and failing to find her, he went to Bacarra, Ilocos Norte, "to soothe his wounded feelings". On November 18, 1952, Benjamin Bugayong filed in the Court of First Instance of Pangasinan a complaint for legal separation against his wife. The motion to dismiss was answered by plaintiff and the Court, considering only the second ground of the motion to dismiss i. e., condonation, ordered the dismissal of the action. ISSUE: Whether or not there is condonation on the part of the husband with respect to the legal separation case on account of adultery of the wife. RULING: Yes. The Court considered plaintiff's line of conduct under the assumption that he really believed his wife guilty of adultery. What did he do in such state of mind. In August, 1952, he went to Pangasinan and looked for his wife and after finding her they lived together as husband and wife for 2 nights and 1 day, after which he says that he tried to verify from her the truth of the news he had about her infidelity, but failed to attain his purpose because his wife, instead of answering his query on the matter, preferred to desert him, probably enraged for being subjected to such humiliation. And yet he tried to locate her, though in vain. A detailed examination of the testimony of the plaintiff-husband, especially those portions quoted above, clearly shows that there was a condonation on the part of the husband for the supposed "acts of rank infidelity amounting to adultery" committed by defendant-wife. Admitting for the sake of argument that the infidelities amounting to adultery were committed by the defendant, a reconciliation was effected between her and the plaintiff. The act of the latter in persuading her to come along with him, and the fact that she went with him and consented to be brought to the house of his cousin Pedro Bugayong and together they slept there as husband and wife for one day and one night, and the further fact that in the second night they again slept together in their house likewise as husband and wife all these facts have no other meaning in the opinion of this court than that a reconciliation between them was effected and that there was a condonation of the wife by the husband. The reconciliation occurred almost ten months after he came to know of the acts

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of infidelity amounting to adultery. There is no merit in the contention of appellant that the lower court erred in entertaining condonation as a ground for dismissal inasmuch as same was not raised in the answer or in a motion to dismiss, because in the second ground of the motion to dismiss. 85) LAPERAL vs. REPUBLIC G.R. No. L- 18008. October 30, 1962 FACTS: After several years of marriage with Enrique Sta. Maria, a decree of legal separation was granted by the court. On the other hand, Elisea Laperal has also ceased to live with him. A special procedure for change of name and /or permission to resume the maiden name of herein petitioner Elisea Laperal, was filed. The petition was opposed on the ground that the same violates the provisions of Art. 372 of the New Civil Code. The court however granted the petition on the ground that her continued use of her married name will give rise to confusion in her affairs and in the eventual liquidation of their conjugal assets. The State appealed. That in view of the fact that she has been legally separated from Mr. Enrique R. Santamaria and has likewise ceased to live with him for many years, it is desirable that she be allowed to change her name and/or be permitted to resume using her maiden name to ELISEA LAPERAL. In its decision of October 31, 1960, the court denied the petition for the reason that Article 372 of the Civil Code requires the wife, even after she is decreed legally separated from her husband, to continue using the name and surname she employed before the legal separation. ISSUE: Whether or not the petition for the change of name should be granted. RULING: No, Art. 372 of New Civil Code is written in a language that is mandatory, that the wife, even after the legal separation has been decreed should continue using her name and surname employed before legal separation. This is so because her married status is unaffected by the separation, there being no severance of the vinculum. It seems to be the policy of the law that the wife should continue to use the name indicative of her unchanged status for the benefit of all concerned. The Supreme Court decided that from the petition quoted in full at the beginning of these opinion, the only reason relied upon for the change of name is the fact that petitioner is legally separated from her husband and has, in fact, ceased to live with him for many years. It is doubtful, to say the least, whether Rule 103 which refers to change of name in general, may prevail over the specific provisions of Article 372 of the New Civil Code with regards to married women legally separated from their husbands. Even, however, applying Rule 103 to this case, the fact of legal separation alone which is the only basis for the petition at bar is, in the opinion of the Court, not a sufficient ground to justify a change of the name of herein petitioner, for to hold otherwise would be to provide an easy circumvention of the mandatory provisions of Article 372. 86) ONG vs. LUCITA G. ONG G.R. No. 153206, October 23, 2006 FACTS: Ong Eng Kiam, also known as William Ong (William) and Lucita G. Ong (Lucita) were married on July 13, 1975 at the San Agustin Church in Manila. They have three children: Kingston, Charleston, and Princeton who are now all of the age of majority. In 1996, Lucita filed a Complaint for Legal Separation alleging that her life with William was marked by physical violence, threats, intimidation and grossly abusive conduct. Lucita claimed that she and William quarreled almost every day, with physical violence being inflicted upon her; William would shout invectives at her like "putang ina mo", "gago", "tanga", and he would slap her, kick her, pull her hair, bang her head against concrete wall and throw at her whatever he could reach with his hand; the causes of these fights were petty things regarding their children or their business.William would also scold and beat the children at different parts of their bodies using the buckle of his belt; whenever she tried to stop William from hitting the children, he would turn his ire on her and box her In 1995, after she protested with Williams decision to allow their eldest son Kingston to go to Bacolod, William slapped her and said, "it is none of your business". In the same year, she asked William to bring Kingston back from Bacolod; a violent quarrel ensued and William hit her on her head, left cheek, eye, stomach, and arms; when William hit her on the stomach and she bent down because of the pain, he hit her on the head then pointed a gun at her and asked her to leave the house; she then went to her sisters house in Binondo where she was fetched by her other siblings and brought to their parents house

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in Dagupan; the following day, she went to her parents doctor, Dr. Vicente Elinzano for treatment of her injuries. William for his part denied that he ever inflicted physical harm on his wife, used insulting language against her, or whipped the children with the buckle of his belt. RTC rendered its Decision decreeing legal separation. It found that "it is indubitable that plaintiff (Lucita) and defendant (William) had their frequent quarrels and misunderstanding which made both of their lives miserable and hellish. This is even admitted by the defendant when he said that there was no day that he did not quarrel with his wife. Defendant had regarded the plaintiff negligent in the performance of her wifely duties and had blamed her for not reporting to him about the wrongdoings of their children." The CA found that the testimonies for Lucita were straightforward and credible and the ground for legal separation. William filed a motion for reconsideration which was denied by the CA. ISSUE: Whether a decree of legal separation should not be granted following Art. 56(4) of the FC which provides that legal separation shall be denied when both parties have given ground for legal separation. HELD: A decree of legal separation should be granted in this case. The abandonment referred to by the Family Code is abandonment without justifiable cause for more than one year. As it was established that Lucita left William due to his abusive conduct, such does not constitute abandonment contemplated by the said provision. As correctly observed by the trial court, William himself admitted that there was no day that he did not quarrel with his wife, which made his life miserable, and he blames her for being negligent of her wifely duties and for not reporting to him the wrongdoings of their children. Lucita and her sister, Linda Lim, also gave numerous accounts of the instances when William displayed violent temper against Lucita and their children; such as: when William threw a steel chair at Lucita threw chairs at their children slapped Lucita and utter insulting words at her use the buckle of the belt in whipping the children; pinned Lucita against the wall with his strong arms almost strangling her, and smashed the flower vase and brick rocks and moldings leaving the bedroom in disarray shouted at Lucita and threw a directory at her, in front of Linda and the employees of their business, because he could not find a draft letter on his table got mad at Charleston for cooking steak with vetchin prompting William to smash the plate with steak and hit Charleston, then slapped Lucita and shouted at her "putang ina mo, gago, wala kang pakialam, tarantado" when she sided with Charleston. William also posits that the real motive of Lucita in filing the case for legal separation is in order for her side of the family to gain control of the conjugal properties; that Lucita was willing to destroy his reputation by filing the legal separation case just so her parents and her siblings could control the properties he worked hard for. The Court finds such reasoning hard to believe. The claim of William that a decree of legal separation would taint his reputation and label him as a wife-beater and childabuser also does not elicit sympathy from this Court. If there would be such a smear on his reputation then it would not be because of Lucitas decision to seek relief from the courts, but because he gave Lucita reason to go to court in the first place.

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XI. RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS HUSBAND AND WIFE BETWEEN to, the other. Of course where the property rights of one of the pair are invalid, an action for restitution of such rights can be maintained. But we are disinclined to sanction the doctrine that an order, enforcible by process of contempt, may be entered to compel the restitution of the purely personal rights of consortium. At best such an order can be effective for no other purpose than to compel the spouses to live under the same roof; and the experience of these countries where the court of justice have assumed to compel the cohabitation of married people shows that the policy of the practice is extremely questionable Therefore, reversing the judgment appealed from, in respect both to the original complaint and the crossbill, it is declared that Dolores Vasquez de Arroyo has absented herself from the marital home without sufficient cause; and she is admonished that it is her duty to returnNo. The court ruled in the negative. The authorities are convinced that it is not within the province of the court to compel the wife to live with her husband because such obligation is purely personal in nature. However the court can declare her to be absent from the marital home without sufficient cause. She is further admonished that it is her duty to return. 88) PELAYO vs. MARCELO LAURON G.R. No. L-4089, January 12, 1909 FACTS: Arturo Pelayo, a physician, filed a complaint against Marcelo Lauron and Juana Abella setting forth that on or about the 13th of October of said year, at night, the plaintiff was called to the house of the defendants, situated in San Nicolas, and that upon arrival he was requested by them to render medical assistance to their daughter-in-law who was about to give birth to a child; that therefore, and after consultation with the attending physician, Dr. Escao, it was found necessary, on account of the difficult birth, to remove the fetus by means of forceps which operation was performed by the plaintiff, who also had to remove the afterbirth, in which services he was occupied until the following morning, and that afterwards, on the same day, he visited the patient several times; that the just and equitable value of the services rendered by him was P500, which the defendants refuse to pay without alleging any good reason therefor; that. In answer to the complaint counsel for the defendants denied all of the allegation therein contained and alleged as a special defense, that

87) ARROYO vs. DE ARROYO G.R. No. L-17014, August 11, 1921 FACTS: In 1910 Mariano and Dolores married each other and lived together as husband and wife. In 1920 Dolores went away and left their common home with the intention of living separately from her husband Mariano. After failing to convince and induce Dolores to come back and resume her marital obligations, Mariano filed an action to compel her to live with him. Dolores answered by claiming that her husband was very cruel and in turn prayed for a decree of separation. The trial judge, upon consideration of the evidence before him, reached the conclusion that the husband was more to blame than his wife and that his continued ill-treatment of her furnished sufficient justification for her abandonment of the conjugal home and the permanent breaking off of marital relations with him. The Court has carefully examined and weighed every line of the proof, and is of the opinion that the conclusion stated is wholly untenable. The evidence shows that the wife is afflicted with a disposition of jealousy towards her husband in an aggravated degree; and to his cause are chiefly traceable without a doubt the many miseries that have attended their married life. During the trial it was found out that the husband was not cruel to the wife. Furthermore, it was the wife who was excessively jealous without any proof of infidelity of the husband. Therefore the wife is morally and legally obligated to live with her husband. ISSUE: Whether or not the wife can be ordered by the court to live with her husband and failure of which will constitute contempt of court? RULING: No. The Supreme Court in this case is unable to hold that Mariano B. Arroyo is entitled to the unconditional and absolute order for the return of the wife to the marital domicile, which is sought in the petitory part of the complaint though he is, without doubt, entitled to a judicial declaration that his wife has presented herself without sufficient cause and that it is her duty to return. Moreover, upon examination of the authorities the court ruled that it is convinced that it is not within the province of the courts of this country to attempt to compel one of the spouses to cohabit with, and render conjugal rights

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their daughter-in-law had died in consequence of the said childbirth, and that when she was alive she lived with her husband independently and in a separate house without any relation whatever with them, and that, if on the day when she gave birth she was in the house of the defendants, her stay their was accidental and due to fortuitous circumstances ISSUE: Whether or not father and mother-in-law may be compelled to pay the fees concerning the services performed with the daughter-in-law. RULING: No. In the face of the above legal precepts it is unquestionable that the person bound to pay the fees due to the plaintiff for the professional services that he rendered to the daughter-in-law of the defendants during her childbirth, is the husband of the patient and not her father and mother- in-law, the defendants herein. Father and mother-in-law are strangers with respect to the obligation that devolves upon the husband to provide support, among which is the furnishing of medical assistance to his wife at the time of her confinement; and, on the other hand, it does not appear that a contract existed between the defendants and the plaintiff physician, for which reason it is obvious that the former can not be compelled to pay fees which they are under no liability to pay because it does not appear that they consented to bind themselves. The foregoing suffices to demonstrate that the first and second errors assigned to the judgment below are unfounded, because, if the plaintiff has no right of action against the defendants, it is needless to declare whether or not the use of forceps is a surgical operation. From the foregoing it may readily be understood that it was improper to have brought an action against the defendants simply because they were the parties who called the plaintiff and requested him to assist the patient during her difficult confinement, and also, possibly, because they were her father and mother-in-law and the sickness occurred in their house. The defendants were not, nor are they now, under any obligation by virtue of any legal provision, to pay the fees claimed, nor in consequence of any contract entered into between them and the plaintiff from which such obligation might have arisen. 89) ILUSORIO V. ILUSORIO GRN 139789, May 12, 2000 FACTS: Erlinda Kalaw Ilusorio is the wife of lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio. Potenciano Ilusorio is about 86 years of age possessed of extensive property valued at millions of pesos. For many years, lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio was Chairman of the Board and President of Baguio Country Club. On July 11, 1942, Erlinda Kalaw and Potenciano Ilusorio contracted matrimony and lived together for a period of thirty (30) years. In 1972, they separated from bed and board . Potenciano lived at Urdaneta Condominium, Ayala Ave., Makati City when he was in Manila and at Ilusorio Penthouse, Baguio Country Club when he was in Baguio City. On the other hand, Erlinda lived in Antipolo City. Out of their marriage, the spouses had six (6) children. On December 30, 1997, upon Potenciano's arrival from the United States, he stayed with Erlinda for about five (5) months in Antipolo City. The children, Sylvia and Erlinda, alleged that during this time, their mother gave Potenciano an overdose of an antidepressant drug prescribed by his doctor. As a consequence, Potenciano's health deteriorated. On February 25, 1998, Erlinda filed with the RTC Antipolo City a petition for guardianship over the person and property of Potenciano Ilusorio due to the latter's advanced age, frail health, poor eyesight and impaired judgment. On May 31, 1998, after attending a corporate meeting in Baguio City, Potenciano Ilusorio did not return to Antipolo City and instead lived at Cleveland Condominium, Makati. On March 11, 1999, Erlinda filed with the CA a petition for habeas corpus to have the custody of lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio. She alleged that respondents refused petitioner's demands to see and visit her husband and prohibited Potenciano from returning to Antipolo City. CA granted visitation rights in favor of Erlinda though she did not pray for such and the administration of the Cleveland Condominium ISSUE: May a wife secure a writ of habeas corpus to compel her husband to live with her in conjugal bliss? HELD: The answer is no. Marital rights including coverture and living in conjugal dwelling may not be enforced by the extra-ordinary writ of habeas corpus. A writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention or by which the

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rightful custody of a person is withheld from the one entitled thereto. "Habeas corpus is a writ directed to the person detaining another, commanding him to produce the body of the prisoner at a designated time and place, with the day and cause of his capture and detention, to do, submit to, and receive whatsoever the court or judge awarding the writ shall consider in that behalf. The evidence shows that there was no actual and effective detention or deprivation of lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio's liberty that would justify the issuance of the writ. The fact that lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio is about 86 years of age, or under medication does not necessarily render him mentally incapacitated. After due hearing, the Court of Appeals concluded that there was no unlawful restraint on his liberty. Likewise, Potenciano Ilusorio did not request the administrator of the Cleveland Condominium and not to allow his wife and other children from seeing or visiting him. He made it clear that he did not object to seeing them. Being of sound mind, he is thus possessed with the capacity to make choices. In this case, the crucial choices revolve on his residence and the people he opts to see or live with. The choices he made may not appeal to some of his family members but these are choices which exclusively belong to Potenciano. He made it clear before the Court of Appeals that he was not prevented from leaving his house or seeing people. With his full mental capacity coupled with the right of choice, Potenciano Ilusorio may not be the subject of visitation rights against his free choice. Otherwise, we will deprive him of his right to privacy. Needless to say, this will run against his fundamental constitutional right. In case the husband refuses to see his wife for private reasons, he is at liberty to do so without threat of any penalty attached to the exercise of his right. No court is empowered as a judicial authority to compel a husband to live with his wife. Coverture cannot be enforced by compulsion of a writ of habeas corpus carried out by sheriffs or by any other mesne process. That is a matter beyond judicial authority and is best left to the man and woman's free choice.

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XII. PROPERTY RELATIONS 90) MOISES JOCSON V. C.A 170 SCRA 333 FACTS: Emilio Jocson during his lifetime sold parcels of land to his daughter Agustina. One said parcels of land bears and entry in the TCT Emilio Jocson, married to Alejandra Poblete. These parcels of land are claimed by one of the surviving heirs of Emilio to have been sold fictitiously and without any or insufficient consideration. Futhermore he claimed that when his father sold one of the land, it was still part of the conjugal property of their parents which has not been liquidated. Agustina on the otherhand claim that the sale was with sufficient consideration and rebutted the allegation that she has no source of income by alleging she is engaged in playa buying business. This was not controverted by Moises. ISSUE: Will the presumption that a property is conjugal arise based on the entry in the registry which states that the owner is Married to thereby making it conjugal. HELD; In order for the presumption to apply, it must first be proven that the property was acquired during the marriage. The description married to does not vest title but merely serves to describe the civil status. Registration does not vest ownership but merely confirms one already vested. The allegation that the sale is fictitious due to insufficient consideration must be proven by the one who allege the same. In this case Moises failed to prove this fact which likewise fails to overcome the presumption that a sale is with sufficient consideration. 91) TODA JR V. ROSEMARIE TUASON-TODA 153 SCRA 713 FACTS: Benigno Toda, Jr and Rose Marie TuasonToda were married on June 9, 1951 and were blessed with two children. Individual differences and the alleged infidelity of Benigno, however, marred the conjugal union thereby prompting Rose Marie to file on December 18, 1979 in the CFI of Rizal, a petition for termination of conjugal partnership for alleged mismanagement and dissipation of conjugal funds against Benigno. In order not to lengthen the proceedings, the parties entered into a compromise agreement. However said agreement caused further litigation due to the question on its effectivity. This is material to determine when and how much certain shares of stock is payable. ISSUE: When is the effectivity of a compromise agreement entered into by the husband and wife? Is it when the court approves of the same or when the spouses signed it? HELD: The compromise agreement separating their properties is given effect only upon the approval of the court. Under Article 190 of the Civil Code, "(i)n the absence of an express declaration in the marriage settlements, the separation of property between spouses during the marriage shall not take place save in virtue of a judicial order." Hence, the separation of property is not effected by the mere execution of the contract or agreement of the parties, but by the decree of the court approving the same. It, therefore, becomes effective on y upon judicial approval, without which it is void. Furthermore, Article 192 of said Code explicitly provides that the conjugal partnership is dissolved only upon the issuance of a decree of separation of property 92) WONG V. HON. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT and ROMARICO HENSON 200 SCRA 792 FACTS: Romarico Henson married Katrina Pineda on January 6, 1964. They have three children but even during the early years of their marriage, Romarico and Katrina had been most of the time living separately. The former stayed in Angeles City while the latter lived in Manila. During the marriage or on January 6, 1971, Romarico bought a 1,787 square-meter parcel of land in Angeles City for P11,492 from his father, Dr. Celestino L. Henson with money borrowed from an officemate. Meanwhile, in Hongkong sometime in June 1972, Katrina entered into an agreement with Anita Chan whereby the latter consigned to Katrina pieces of jewelry for sale valued at 199,895 Hongkong dollars or P321,830.95. 4 When Katrina failed to return the pieces of jewelry within the 20-day period agreed upon, Anita Chan demanded payment of their value. Thereafter Anita and her husband filed an action for collection of sum of money. After trial, the court promulgated a decision in favor of the Wongs. It ordered Katrina and Romarico Henson to pay the Wongs.

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A writ of execution was thereafter issued. Levied upon were four lots in Angeles City all in the name of Romarico Henson ... married to Katrina Henson. ISSUE: WON the judgment of execution extends to the properties owned by the husband HELD: The Court disagrees with the CA that the said properties are exclusively owned by Romarico. Having been acquired during the marriage, they are still presumed to belong to the conjugal partnership even though Romarico and Katrina had been living separately. The presumption of the conjugal nature of the properties subsists in the absence of clear, satisfactory and convincing evidence to overcome said presumption or to prove that Romarico exclusively owns the properties. While there is proof that Romarico acquired the properties with money he had borrowed from an officemate, it is unclear where he obtained the money to repay the loan. If he paid it out of his salaries, then the money is part of the conjugal assets and not exclusively his. Proof on this matter is of paramount importance considering that in the determination of the nature of a property acquired by a person during covertrue, the controlling factor is the source of the money utilized in the purchase. The conjugal nature of the properties notwithstanding, Katrina's indebtedness may not be paid for with them her obligation not having been shown by the petitioners to be one of the charges against the conjugal partnership. In addition to the fact that her rights over the properties are merely inchoate prior to the liquidation of the conjugal partnership, the consent of her husband and her authority to incur such indebtedness had not been alleged in the complaint and proven at the trial. Furthermore, under the Civil Code (before the effectivity of the Family Code on August 3, 1988), a wife may bind the conjugal partnership only when she purchases things necessary for the support of the family or when she borrows money for the purpose of purchasing things necessary for the support of the family if the husband fails to deliver the proper sum; 32 when the administration of the conjugal partnership is transferred to the wife by the courts 33 or by the husband 34 and when the wife gives moderate donations for charity. 35 Having failed to establish that any of these circumstances occurred, the Wongs may not bind the conjugal assets to answer for Katrina's personal obligation to them. 93) BELCODERO V. CA 227 SCRA 303 FACTS: Alayo D. Bosing, married Juliana Oday on 27 July 1927, with whom he had three children. In 1946, he left the conjugal home, and he started to live instead with Josefa Rivera with whom he later begot one child, named Josephine Bosing, now Josephine Belcodero. On 23 August 1949, Alayo purchased a parcel of land on installment basis from the Magdalena Estate, Inc. In the deed, he indicated his civil status as, "married to Josefa R. Bosing," the common-law wife. In a letter which he addressed to Magdalena Estate, Inc., he authorized the latter to transfer the lot in the name of his "wife Josefa R. Bosing." The final deed of sale was executed by Magdalena Estate, Inc. A few days later, or on 09 November 1959, Transfer Certificate of Title No. 48790 was issued in the name of "Josefa R. Bosing, . . . married to Alayo Bosing, . . ." On 06 June 1958, Alayo married Josefa while his prior marriage with Juliana was still subsisting. Alayo died on 11 March 1967. About three years later, or on September 1970, Josefa and Josephine executed a document of extrajudicial partition and sale of the lot in question, which was there described as "conjugal property" of Josefa and deceased Alayo. In this deed, Josefa's supposed one-half (1/2) interest as surviving spouse of Alayo, as well as her one-fourth (1/4) interest as heir, was conveyed to Josephine for a P10,000.00 consideration, thereby completing for herself, along with her one-fourth (1/4) interest as the surviving child of Alayo, a full "ownership" of the property. A new TCT No. 198840 was issued on June 1974 in the name of Josephine. On October 1980, Juliana (deceased Alayo's real widow) and her three legitimate children filed with the court a quo an action for reconveyance of the property. TC ruled in favor of the plaintiffs. CA affirmed. ISSUE: WON THE PROPERTY IN QUESTION BELONGS EXCLUSIVELY TO THE PETITIONERS. HELD: It cannot be seriously contended that, simply because the Property was titled in the name of Josefa at Alayo's request, she should thereby be deemed to be its owner. The property unquestionably was acquired by Alayo. Alayo's letter, dated 06 October 1959, to Magdalena Estate, Inc., merely authorized the latter to have the title to the property transferred to her name. More importantly, she implicitly recognized Alayo's

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ownership when, three years after the death of Alayo, she and Josephine executed the deed of extrajudicial partition and sale in which she asserted a one-half (1/2) interest . The property remained as belonging to the conjugal partnership of Alayo and his legitimate wife Juliana. Under both the new Civil Code (Article 160) and the old Civil Code (Article 1407), "all property of the marriage is presumed to belong to the conjugal partnership, unless it be proved that it pertains exclusively to the husband or to the wife." This presumption has not been convincingly rebutted. As regards the property relation between common-law spouses, Article 144 of the Civil Code merely codified the law established through judicial precedents under the old code. In both regimes, the co-ownership rule had more than once been repudiated when either or both spouses suffered from an impediment to marry. The present provisions under Article 147 and Article 148 of the Family Code did not much deviate from the old rules; in any case, its provisions cannot apply to this case without interdicting prior vested rights (Article 256, Family Code). It was at the time that 'the adjudication of ownership was made following Alayo's demise (not when Alayo merely allowed the property to be titled in Josefa's name which clearly was not intended to be adversarial to Alayo's interest), that a constructive trust was deemed to have been created by operation of law under the provisions of Article 1456 of the Civil Code. Article 1456. If the property is acquired through mistake or fraud, the person obtaining it is, by force of law, considered a trustee of an implied trust for the benefit of the person from whom the property comes. AFFIREMED. 94) VALDEZ V. REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 102, QUEZON CITY and CONSUELO M. GOMEZ-VALDEZ 260 SCRA 221 FACTS: Antonio Valdez and Consuelo Gomez were married in January 1971 and had five children. In a petition, dated 22 June 1992, Valdez sought the declaration of nullity of the marriage pursuant to Article 36 of the Family code. After the hearing the parties following the joinder of issues, the trial court, in its decision of 29 July 1994, granted the petition, declaring among others that (1) the marriage of petitioner Antonio Valdez and respondent Consuelo Gomez-Valdez null and void under Article 36 of the Family Code on the ground of their mutual psychological incapacity to comply with their essential marital obligations; and (2) the petitioner and the respondent are directed to start proceedings on the liquidation of their common properties as defined by Article 147 of the Family Code, and to comply with the provisions of Articles 50, 51, and 52 of the same code, within thirty (30) days from notice of this decision. Consuelo Gomez sought a clarification of that portion of the decision directing compliance with Articles 50, 51 and 52 of the Family Code. She asserted that the Family Code contained no provisions on the procedure for the liquidation of common property in "unions without marriage." In an order, the TC made the following clarification: Consequently, considering that Article 147 of the Family Code explicitly provides that the property acquired by both parties during their union, in the absence of proof to the contrary, are presumed to have been obtained through the joint efforts of the parties and will be owned by them in equal shares, plaintiff and defendant will own their "family home" and all their properties for that matter in equal shares. In the liquidation and partition of properties owned in common by the plaintiff and defendant, the provisions on ownership found in the Civil Code shall apply. The TC said that considering that this Court has already declared the marriage between petitioner and respondent as null and void ab initio, pursuant to Art. 147, the property regime of petitioner and respondent shall be governed by the rules on coownership. In his recourse to this Court, petitioner submits that Articles 50, 51 and 52 of the Family Code should be held controlling. ISSUE: WON Article 147 of the Family Code apply to cases where the parties are psychologically incapacitated. HELD: The trial court correctly applied the law. In a void marriage, regardless of the cause thereof, the property relations of the parties during the period of cohabitation is governed by the provisions of Article 147 or Article 148, such as the case may be, of the Family Code. Article 147 provides: Art. 147. When a man and a woman who are capacitated to marry each other, live exclusively with each other as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage or under a void marriage, their wages and salaries shall be owned by them in equal shares and the property acquired by both of them through their work or industry shall be governed by the rules on co-ownership

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In the absence of proof to the contrary, properties acquired while they lived together shall be presumed to have been obtained by their joint efforts, work or industry, and shall be owned by them in equal shares. For purposes of this Article, a party who did not participate in the acquisition by the other party of any property shall be deemed to have contributed jointly in the acquisition thereof in the former's efforts consisted in the care and maintenance of the family and of the household. Under this property regime, property acquired by both spouses through their work and industry shall be governed by the rules on equal co-ownership. Any property acquired during the union is prima facie presumed to have been obtained through their joint efforts. A party who did not participate in the acquisition of the property shall be considered as having contributed thereto jointly if said party's "efforts consisted in the care and maintenance of the family household." Unlike the conjugal partnership of gains, the fruits of the couple's separate property are not included in the co-ownership. Thus, petitioner and private respondent own the "family home" and all their common property in equal shares, as well as in concluding that, in the liquidation and partition of the property owned in common by them, the provisions on co-ownership under the Civil Code, not Articles 50, 51 and 52, in relation to Articles 102 and 129, of the Family Code, should aptly prevail. AFFIRMED. 95) ESTONINA V. COURT OF APPEALS 266 SCRA 627 FACTS: The controversy involves Lot C situated in Barrio Santisima Cruz, Sta. Cruz, Laguna with an area of 273 square meters. The said parcel of land was in the name of Santiago Garcia who died on October 2, 1967. Some six years after Santiago Garcia's death, or on March 10, 1973, the then CFI of Manila issued an order granting Trinidad Estonina's application for a writ of preliminary attachment. Consequently, a notice of attachment was inscribed in favor of Trinidad Estonina covering all the rights, title, interest, and participation that Consuelo Garcia, the widow of Santiago Garcia, may have in and to the parcel of land covered by the said title. On August 14, 1977, the children of Santiago Garcia with his first wife, Adela Isoreta, namely Ofelia, Remedios, Elvira and Castor all surnamed Garcia, executed a deed selling, transferring and conveying unto the spouses Celso Atayan and Nilda Hicban their "title, rights, interest and participation which is four tenths (4/10) pro indiviso share" in the said parcel of land covered by TCT No. T-82229. About a year after, Santiago Garcia's second wife and widow, Consuelo Garcia and their children, Virgilio, Marilou and Lolita, all surnamed Garcia, followed suit and also sold to the spouses Atayan, their four-tenths (4/10) pro indidviso share in the same parcel of land. On February 22, 1980, Estrella R. Garcia, the widow of Santiago Garcia, Jr. (Santiago Garcia's son from his first marriage), and their children, Roderick, Elizabeth, Dorothy and Erlinda, likewise sold to the spouses Atayan, their one-tenth (1/10) pro indiviso share in the parcel of land covered by TCT No. T82229. Subsequent to a favorable decision obtained by Trinidad Estonina against Consuelo Garcia, execution pending appeal was made on the parcel of land formerly covered by TCT No. T-82229 on July 20, 1979. The said parcel of land was sold at a public auction where Trinidad Estonina was the highest bidder. Consuelo Garcia appealed the decision in Civil Case before the IAC which, however, ruled in favor of Trinidad Estonina. Upon the finality of the said decision, TCT No. T-82229 was cancelled by the Register of Deeds of Laguna and in lieu thereof, TCT No. T-99961 was issued in favor of "Trinidad Estonina married to Paulino Estonina". On July 25, 1985, the spouses Atayan filed a complaint for annulment of sheriff's sale and transfer certificate of title with damages before Branch 28 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Santa Cruz, Laguna, impleading as defendants therein the spouses Trinidad and Paulino Estonina , Nicanor E. Silvano, Reynaldo G. Javier, Edmund R. Solidum, the Register of Deeds of Laguna, and the heirs of Santiago Garcia who sold to the spouses Atayan their pro indiviso shares in the parcel of land covered by TCT No. T-82229. RTC:dismissed the complaint. It found the lot covered by TCT No. T-82229, was acquired during the marriage of Santiago Garcia and Consuelo Gaza, and is presumed to be conjugal in nature. Upon the death of Santiago Garcia on October 2, 1967, his conjugal share of one-half (l/2) of the said parcel of land was transmitted to his heirs by intestate succession. By the law on intestate succession, his nine children, five by his first wife and four out of the subsequent marriage, and Consuelo Garcia, his second wife and widow, inherited the same at one-tenth (1/10) each pro indiviso. The remaining one-half (1/2) pertained to the conjugal share of Consuelo Garcia. Thus, inasmuch as Consuelo Garcia inherited one-tenth (1/10) of her husband's conjugal share in the said

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property and is the owner of one-half (1/2) thereof as her conjugal share, she owns a total of 55% (or 1/10 plus 1/2) of the said parcel of land. What could be attached by the spouses Estonina and later levied on execution and sold at public auction was only Consuelo Garcia's rights and interests which is fifty five per cent (55%) of the property. CA: the parcel of land in question was not the conjugal property of Santiago and Consuelo Garcia, but was the former's exclusive property. It was therefore the entire property that formed part of Santiago Garcia's estate upon his death. When Santiago Garcia died, his nine children and Consuelo Garcia inherited the said property each to the extent of one-tenth (1/10) pro indiviso share. Hence, it was only Consuelo Garcia's one-tenth(l/l0) pro indiviso share in the parcel of land in question which could be validly attached, levied and sold in execution to satisfy the judgment against her and in favor of Trinidad Estonina in Civil Case No. 88430. ISSUE: WON the land is a conjugal property of Santiago and Consuelo HELD: The property involved in this dispute is indeed the exclusive property of the deceased Santiago Garcia. It has been repeatedly held that the presumption under Article 160 of the Civil Code that all property of the marriage belong to the conjugal partnership applies only when there is proof that the property was acquired during the marriage. Otherwise stated, proof of acquisition during the marriage is a condition sine qua non for the operation of the presumption in favor of the conjugal partnership. In the case at bench, the petitioners have been unable to present any proof that the property in question was acquired during the marriage of Santiago and Consuelo. They anchor their claim solely on the fact that when the title over the land in question was issued, Santiago was already married to Consuelo as evidenced by the registration in the name of "Santiago Garcia married to Consuelo Gaza". This, according to the spouses Estonina, suffices to establish the conjugal nature of the property. In the case of Jocson v. Court of Appeals The fact that the properties were registered in the name of "Emilio Jocson, married to Alejandra Poblete" is no proof that the properties were acquired during the spouses' coverture. Acquisition of title and registration thereof are two different acts. It is well settled that registration does not confer title but merely confirms one already erdsting. The words "married to" preceding "Alejandra Poblete" are merely descriptive of the civil status of Emilio Jocson. In other words, the import from the certificates of title is that Emilio Jocson is the owner of the properties, the same having been registered in his name alone, and that he is married to Alejandra Poblete. Being the exclusive property of Santiago Garcia, it was the entire parcel of land in question that formed part of his estate and which passed to his ten heirs by compulsory succession upon his death. And as correctly held by the Court of Appeals, what could therefore be attached and sold at public auction in Civil Case No. 88430 was only the onetenth (1/10) pro indiviso share of Consuelo Garcia in the said parcel of land. The sale at public auction of the disputed property in its entirety by the Sheriff in favor of Trinidad Estonina over and above the onetenth (1/10) share of Consuelo Garcia is null and void, belonging as it does to the other heirs of Santiago Garcia and later to the spouses Atayan. Anent the contention that the spouses Atayan are guilty of laches, suffice it to state that this residual argument deserves scant consideration. Being strangers to Civil Case No. 88430 where the writ of execution over the land in question was issued, they cannot be faulted for filing the "proper action" only in 1985 or six (6) years after the levy on execution. Besides, it was only in 1984 that the Court of Appeals rendered a decision finally cancelling the title of their predecessors-in-interest and issuing another one in favor of Trinidad Estonina. The action filed by the spouses Atayan seeking the annulment of the sheriffs sale and the transfer certificate of title with damages immediately thereafter or on July 25, 1985 cannot be considered as undue delay nor does it imply a lack of interest to enforce their claim over the disputed property. 96) AYALA INVESTMENT VS. CA & SPS. SHING GR NO. 118305, FEBRUARY 12, 1998 DOCTRINE: If the money or services are given to another person or entity, and the husband acted only as a surety or guarantor, that contract cannot, by itself, alone be categorized as falling within the context of "obligations for the benefit of the conjugal partnership." The contract of loan or services is clearly for the benefit of the principal debtor and not for the surety or his family. FACTS: Philippine Blooming Mills (PBM) obtained a P50,300,000 loan from petitioner Ayala Investment and Development Corporation (AIDC). As added security for the credit line extended to PBM,

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respondent Alfredo Ching, Executive Vice President of PBM, executed security agreements, making himself jointly and severally answerable with PBM's indebtedness to AIDC. PBM failed to pay the loan. Thus, AIDC filed a case for sum of money against PBM and respondenthusband Alfredo Ching with the CFI of Pasig. After trial, the court rendered judgment ordering PBM and respondent-husband Alfredo Ching to jointly and severally pay AIDC the principal amount of P50,300,000 with interests. Upon motion of AIDC, the lower court issued a writ of execution pending appeal. Upon AIDC's putting up of an P8,000,000 bond, a writ of execution was issued. Thereafter, petitioner Abelardo Magsajo, Sr., Deputy Sheriff of Pasig, caused the issuance and service upon respondents-spouses of a notice of sheriff sale on 3 of their conjugal properties. Petitioner Magsajo then scheduled the auction sale of the properties levied. Private respondents filed a case of injunction against petitioners to enjoin the auction sale alleging that petitioners cannot enforce the judgment against the conjugal partnership levied on the ground that, among others, the subject loan did not redound to the benefit of the said conjugal partnership. The lower court issued a temporary restraining order. AIDC filed a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals, questioning the order of the lower court enjoining the sale. Court of Appeals issued a Temporary Restraining Order enjoining the lower court from enforcing its Order, thus paving the way for the scheduled auction sale of respondentsspouses conjugal properties. The auction sale took place. AIDC being the only bidder, was issued a Certificate of Sale. Upon expiration of the redemption period, petitioner sheriff issued the final deed of sale which was registered. AIDC filed a motion to dismiss the petition for injunction filed before the CFI of Pasig on the ground that the same had become moot and academic with the consummation of the sale. Respondents filed their opposition to the motion arguing, among others, that where a third party who claim is ownership of the property attached or levied upon, a different legal situation is presented; and that in this case, 2 of the real properties are actually in the name of Encarnacion Ching, a non-party to the civil case. RTC: the conjugal partnership of gains of respondents-spouses Alfredo and Encarnacion Ching is not liable for the payment of the debts secured by respondent-husband Alfredo Ching. Thus, the sale on execution null and void. CA: Affirmed decision of the trial court. ISSUE: WON a surety agreement entered into by the husband in favor of his employer is within the contemplation of Art. 161 of the Civil Code and considered for the benefit of the conjugal partnership? HELD: No. The surety agreement entered into by the husband in favor of his employer is not considered for the benefit of the conjugal partnership. We do not agree with petitioners that there is a difference between the terms "redounded to the benefit of" or "benefited from" on the one hand; and "for the benefit of" on the other. They mean one and the same thing. Art. 161 (1) of the Civil Code and Art. 121 (2) of the Family Code are similarly worded, i.e., both use the term "for the benefit of." On the other hand, Art. 122 of the Family Code provides that "The payment of personal debts by the husband or the wife before or during the marriage shall not be charged to the conjugal partnership except insofar as they redounded to the benefit of the family." As can be seen, the terms are used interchangeably. From the jurisprudential rulings of this Court, we can derive the following conclusions: (A) If the husband himself is the principal obligor in the contract, i.e., he directly received the money and services to be used in or for his own business or his own profession, that contract falls within the term . . . . obligations for the benefit of the conjugal partnership." Here, no actual benefit may be proved. It is enough that the benefit to the family is apparent at the time of the signing of the contract. From the very nature of the contract of loan or services, the family stands to benefit from the loan facility or services to be rendered to the business or profession of the husband. It is immaterial, if in the end, his business or profession fails or does not succeed. Simply stated, where the husband contracts obligations on behalf of the family business, the law presumes, and rightly so, that such obligation will redound to the benefit of the conjugal partnership. (B) On the other hand, if the money or services are given to another person or entity, and the husband acted only as a surety or guarantor, that contract cannot, by itself, alone be categorized as falling within the context of "obligations for the benefit of the conjugal partnership." The contract of loan or services is clearly for the benefit of the principal debtor and not for the surety or his family. No presumption can be inferred that, when a husband enters into a contract of surety or accommodation agreement, it is "for the benefit of the conjugal

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partnership." Proof must be presented to establish benefit redounding to the conjugal partnership. The provisions of the Family Code is applicable in this case. These provisions highlight the underlying concern of the law for the conservation of the conjugal partnership; for the husband's duty to protect and safeguard, if not augment, not to dissipate it. This is the underlying reason why the Family Code clarifies that the obligations entered into by one of the spouses must be those that redounded to the benefit of the family and that the measure of the partnership's liability is to "the extent that the family is benefited." Here, the property in dispute also involves the family home. The loan is a corporate loan not a personal one. Signing as a surety is certainly not an exercise of an industry or profession nor an act of administration for the benefit of the family. 97) GUIANG VS. CA AND GILDA COPUZ G.R. No. 125172, June 26, 1998 DOCTRINE: The sale of a conjugal property requires the consent of both the husband and the wife. The absence of the consent of one renders the sale null and void, while the vitiation thereof makes it merely voidable. Only in the latter case can ratification cure the defect. FACTS: Private respondent Gilda Corpuz and Judie Corpuz are legally married spouses. They have three children, namely: Junie (18 years old), Harriet (17), and Jodie (15). The couple bought a 421 sq. meter lot in Koronadal, South Cotabato from Manuel Callejo through a conditional deed of sale. The consideration was payable in installment. In 1988, the couple sold one-half portion of their Lot to petitioner-spouses Antonio and Luzviminda Guiang. Since then, Guiang occupied the one-half portion and built their house thereon. They are thus adjoining neighbors of the Corpuzes. Gilda Corpuz left for Manila to look for work abroad. Unfortunately, she became a victim of an unscrupulous illegal recruiter. She was not able to go abroad. She stayed for sometime in Manila. After his wife's departure for Manila, Judie Corpuz seldom went home to the conjugal dwelling. He stayed most of the time at his place of work. Harriet Corpuz learned that her father intended to sell the remaining one-half portion including their house to Guiangs. She wrote a letter to her mother. Gilda Corpuz replied that she was objecting to the sale. Harriet, however, did not inform her father about this; but instead gave the letter to Luzviminda Guiang so that she would advise her father. However, in the absence of his wife Gilda, Judie Corpuz pushed through the sale. He sold to Luzviminda Guiang thru a "Deed of Transfer of Rights" remaining one-half portion of their lot and the house. Gilda returned home. She found her children staying with other households. Only Junie was staying in their house. Harriet and Joji were with Mr. Panes. Gilda gathered her children together and stayed at their house. Her husband was nowhere to be found. She was informed by her children that their father had a wife already. For staying in their house sold by her husband, spouses Guiang complained before the Barangay authorities for trespassing. The parties thereat signed a document for amicable settlement stating that Gilda Corpuz and her three children must leave voluntarily the house without any charge. Thereafter, Gilda approached the Barangay Captain for the annulment of the settlement. Annulment not having been made, they stayed put in her house and lot. Spouses Guiang filed a motion for execution of the amicable settlement with the MTC. However, Private Respondent Gilda Corpuz filed a Complaint against her husband Judie Corpuz and Petitioner-Spouses Antonio and Luzviminda Guiang. The said Complaint sought the declaration of a Deed of Transfer of Right, which involved the conjugal property, null and void. The trial court ruled in favor of private respondent. CA affirmed. ISSUE: WON the assailed Deed of Transfer of Rights was validly executed. HELD: NO Petitioners insist that the questioned Deed was validly executed by the parties in good faith and for valuable consideration. The absence of private respondent's consent merely rendered the Deed voidable under Article 1390 of the Civil Code. The provision in par. 2, refers to contracts visited by vices of consent, i.e., contracts which were entered into by a person whose consent was obtained and vitiated through mistake, violence, intimidation, undue influence or fraud. In this instance, private respondent's consent to the contract of sale of their conjugal property was totally inexistent or absent. The contract falls within the ambit of Article 124 of the Family Code, which provides that "...In the absence of such authority or consent, the disposition or encumbrance shall be void..." Furthermore, it must be noted that the fraud and the

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intimidation referred to by petitioners were perpetrated in the execution of the document embodying the amicable settlement. Gilda Corpuz alleged during trial that barangay authorities made her sign said document through misrepresentation and coercion. In any event, its execution does not alter the void character of the deed of sale between the husband and the petitioners-spouses. The fact remains that such contract was entered into without the wife's consent. In sum, the nullity of the contract of sale is premised on the absence of private respondent's consent. To constitute a valid contract, the Civil Code requires the concurrence of the following elements: cause, object, and consent, the last element being indubitably absent in the case at bar. Doctrinally, a void contract cannot be ratified. By Art.1390 of the Civil Code, the Deed to Transfer of Rights cannot be ratified, even by an amicable settlement. Neither can the amicable settlement be considered a continuing offer that was accepted and perfected by the parties, following the last sentence of Article 124. The order of the pertinent events is clear: after the sale, petitioners filed a complaint for trespassing against private respondent, after which the barangay authorities secured an "amicable settlement" and petitioners filed before the MTC a motion for its execution. The settlement, however, does not mention a continuing offer to sell the property or an acceptance of such a continuing offer. Its tenor was to the effect that private respondent would vacate the property. By no stretch of the imagination, can the Court interpret this document as the acceptance mentioned in Article 124. Petition denied. 98) FERRER VS. FERRER G.R. No. 166496, November 9, 2006 It is the owner-spouse who has the obligation to reimburse the conjugal partnership or the spouse who expended the acts or efforts, as the case may be. FACTS: In her Complaint for payment of conjugal improvements, sum of money, and accounting with prayer for injunction and damages, petitioner alleged that she is the widow of Alfredo Ferrer (Alfredo), half-brother of respondents Manuel M. Ferrer (Manuel) and Ismael M. Ferrer (Ismael). Before her marriage to Alfredo, the latter acquired a piece of lot. He applied for a loan with the Social Security System (SSS) to build improvements thereon, including a residential house and a twodoor apartment building. It was during their marriage that payment of the loan was made using the couples conjugal funds. From their conjugal funds, petitioner posited, they constructed a warehouse on the lot. Moreover, petitioner averred that respondent Manuel occupied one door of the apartment building, as well as the warehouse; however, in September 1991, he stopped paying rentals thereon, alleging that he had acquired ownership over the property by virtue of a Deed of Sale executed by Alfredo in favor of respondents, Manuel and Ismael and their spouses. It is petitioners contention that when her husband was already bedridden, respondents Ismael and Flora Ferrer made him sign a document, purported to be his last will and testament. The document, however, was a Deed of Sale covering Alfredos lot and the improvements thereon. Learning of this development, Alfredo filed with the RTC a Complaint for Annulment of the said sale against respondents. The RTC dismissed the same. The RTC found that the terms and conditions of the Deed of Sale are not contrary to law, morals, good customs, and public policy, and should be complied with by the parties in good faith, there being no compelling reason under the law to do otherwise. The dismissal was affirmed by the Court of Appeals. Further, in support of her Complaint, petitioner alluded to a portion of the Decision of the RTC, which stated, that in determining which property is the principal and which is the accessory, the property of greater value shall be considered the principal. In this case, the lot is the principal and the improvements the accessories. Since Article 120 of the Family Code provides the rule that the ownership of accessory follows the ownership of the principal, then the subject lot with all its improvements became an exclusive and capital property of Alfredo with an obligation to reimburse the conjugal partnership of the cost of improvements at the time of liquidation of [the] conjugal partnership. Clearly, Alfredo has all the rights to sell the subject property by himself without need of Josefas consent. According to petitioner, the ruling of the RTC shows that, when Alfredo died she had the right to be reimbursed for the cost of the improvements on Alfredos lot. Hence, one-half thereof should be reimbursed and paid by respondents as they are now the registered owners of Alfredos lot. She averred that respondents cannot claim lack of

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knowledge about the fact that the improvements were constructed using conjugal funds as they had occupied one of the apartment buildings on Alfredos lot, and even paid rentals to petitioner. For their part, respondents filed a Motion to Dismiss, contending that petitioner had no cause of action against them, and that the cause of action was barred by prior judgment. RTC rendered an Order, denying the Motion to Dismiss. According to the RTC, no pronouncement as to the improvements constructed on Alfredos lot has been made and the payment of petitioners share in the conjugal partnership constitutes a separate cause of action. A subsequent Order was issued by the RTC, denying respondents Motion for Reconsideration. Aggrieved, respondents elevated the case to the Court of Appeals by way of a Petition for Certiorari, alleging grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the RTC in denying the dismissal. Court of Appeals rendered a Decision granting the Petition. It held that petitioners Complaint failed to state a cause of action. The appellate court rationalized as follows: [W]e believe that the instant complaint is not the proper action for the respondent to enforce her right of reimbursement of the cost of the improvement[s] on the subject property. As correctly pointed out by the petitioners, the same should be made and directed in the settlement of estate of her deceased husband Alfredo Ferrer pursuant to Article 129 of the Family Code. Such being the case, it appears that the complaint herein fails to state a cause of action against the petitioners, the latter not being the proper parties against whom the subject action for reimbursement must be directed to. xxx Albeit the respondent herein has the legal right to be reimbursed of the cost of the improvements of the subject property, it is not the petitioners but the estate of her deceased husband which has the obligation to pay the same. The complaint herein is therefore dismissible for failure to state a cause of action against the petitioners. Needless to say, the respondent is not without any further recourse as she may file her claim against the estate of her deceased husband. In light of the foregoing, we find that the public respondent committed grave abuse of discretion in denying the petitioners motion to dismiss for failure to state a cause of action. Aggrieved, petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration thereon. Court of Appeals rendered a Resolution denying the motion. Hence, the present recourse. ISSUE: Whether or not he Court of Appeals erred in dismissing petitioners Complaint for failure to state a cause of action. HELD: NO.After a reading of the allegations contained in petitioners Complaint, we are convinced that the same failed to state a cause of action. According to petitioner, while the RTC recognized that the improvements constructed on Alfredos lots were deemed as Alfredos exclusive and capital property, the court also held that petitioner, as Alfredos spouse, has the right to claim reimbursement from the estate of Alfredo. It is argued by petitioner that her husband had no other property, and his only property had been sold to the respondents; hence, she has the legal right to claim for reimbursement from the respondents who are now the owners of the lot and the improvements thereon. In fine, petitioner asseverates that the Complaint cannot be dismissed on the ground of failure to state a cause of action because the respondents have the correlative obligation to pay the value of the improvements. Petitioner was not able to show that there is an obligation on the part of the respondents to respect or not to violate her right. While we could concede that Civil Case No. 61327 made a reference to the right of the spouse as contemplated in Article 120 of the Family Code to be reimbursed for the cost of the improvements, the obligation to reimburse rests on the spouse upon whom ownership of the entire property is vested. There is no obligation on the part of the purchaser of the property, in case the property is sold by the owner-spouse. Indeed, Article 120 provides the solution in determining the ownership of the improvements that are made on the separate property of the spouses at the expense of the partnership or through the acts or efforts of either or both spouses. Thus, when the cost of the improvement and any resulting increase in value are more than the value of the property at the time of the improvement, the entire property of one of the spouses shall belong to the conjugal partnership, subject to reimbursement of the value of the property of the owner-spouse at the time of the improvement; otherwise, said property shall be retained in ownership by the owner-spouse, likewise subject to reimbursement of the cost of the improvement. The subject property was precisely declared as the exclusive property of Alfredo on the basis of Article 120 of the Family Code.

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
What is incontrovertible is that the respondents, despite the allegations contained in the Complaint that they are the buyers of the subject premises, are not petitioners spouse nor can they ever be deemed as the owner-spouse upon whom the obligation to reimburse petitioner for her costs rested. It is the owner-spouse who has the obligation to reimburse the conjugal partnership or the spouse who expended the acts or efforts, as the case may be. Otherwise stated, respondents do not have the obligation to respect petitioners right to be reimbursed. It can be said, thus, that respondents act of acquiring the subject property by sale was not in violation of petitioners rights. The same can also be said of the respondents objection to reimburse petitioner. Simply, no correlative obligation exists on the part of the respondents to reimburse the petitioner. Corollary thereto, neither can it be said that their refusal to reimburse constituted a violation of petitioners rights. As has been shown in the foregoing, no obligation by the respondents under the law exists. Petitioners Complaint failed to state a cause of action against the respondents, and for this reason, the Court of Appeals was not in error in dismissing the same. WHEREFORE, the Petition is DENIED. 99) DOCENA VS. HON. RICARDO LAPESURA GR NO. 140153, MARCH 28, 2001 FACTS: On June 1, 1977, private respondent, Casiano Hombria filed a Complaint for the recovery of a parcel of land against lessees, petitionerspouses Docena. The petitioners clamed ownership of the land based on occupation since time immemorial. A certain Guillermo Abuda intervened in the case. In a decision dated November 24, 1989, the trial court ruled in favor of petitioners and the intervenor Abuda. On appeal, the Court of Appeals reversed the judgment of the trial court and ordered the petitioners to vacate the land they have leased from plaintiff-appellant. On May 22, 19995, Hombria filed a Motion for Execution of the above decision which has already become final and executory. The above motion was granted by judge Lapesura and a Writ of Execution was issued therefore. An alias Writ of Demolition was then filed by the Sheriff. A Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition was filed by the petitioners eith the Court of Appeals, alleging grave abuse of discretion on the part of the trial court judge in issuing the orders and the sheriff in issuing the Alias Writ of Demolition. CA dismissed the petition on the grounds that the petition was filed beyond the 60-day period provided under Section 4 of Rule 65 of the 1997 Revised Rules of Civil Procedure as amended by Bar Matter No. 803 and that the certification of non-forum shopping attached thereto was signed by the husband alone. the The Motion for reconsideration was also denied. Hence this petition. ISSUE: Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in dismissing the Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition. HELD: YES. Under the New Civil Code, the husband is the administrator of the conjugal partnership. In fact, he is the sole administrator, and the wife is not entitled as a matter of right to join him in this endeavor. The husband may defend the conjugal partnership in a suit or action without being joined by the wife. Corollarily, the husband alone may execute the necessary certificate of non-forum shopping to accompany the pleading. The husband as the statutory administrator of the conjugal property could have filed the petition for certiorari and prohibition alone, without the concurrence of the wife. If suits to defend an interest in the conjugal prperties may be filed by the husband alone, with more reason, he may sign the certficate of non-forum shopping to be attched to the petition. Under the Family Code, the administration of the conjugal property belongs to the husband and the wife jointly. However, an act of alienation or encumbrance where the consent of both spouses is required, joint management or administration does not require that the husband and wife always act together. Each spouse may validly exercise full power of management alone, subject to the intervention of the court in proper cases as provided under Article 124 of the Family Code. It is believed taht even under the provisions of the Family Code, the husband alone could have filed the petition for certiorari and prohibition to contests the writs of demolition issued against the conjugal property with the Court of Appeals without being joined by his wife. The signing of the attached certificate of nonforum shopping only by the husband is not a fatal defect.

100) MANALO VS. CAMAISA GR No. 147978, January 23, 2002 FACTS:

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Thelma A. Jader-Manalo was interested in buying the two properties of Spouses Camaisa. So she negotiated for the purchase through a real estate broker, Mr. Proceso Ereno. She made a definite offer to buy the properties to respondent Edilberto Camaisa with the knowledge and conformity of his wife, respondent Norma Camaisa in the presence of the real estate broker. After Edilberto signed the contracts, Manalo delivered to him two checks as down payments. The contracts were given to Edilberto for the formal affixing of his wife's signature. However, the following day, petitioner received a call from respondent Norma, requesting a meeting to clarify some provisions of the contracts. To accommodate her queries, petitioner, accompanied by her lawyer, met with Edilberto and Norma and the real estate broker at Cafe Rizal in Makati. During the meeting, handwritten notations were made on the contracts to sell, so they arranged to incorporate the notations and to meet again for the formal signing of the contracts. When petitioner met again with respondent spouses and the real estate broker at Edilberto's office for the formal affixing of Norma's signature, she was surprised when respondent spouses informed her that they were backing out of the agreement because they needed "spot cash" for the full amount of the consideration. Petitioner reminded respondent spouses that the contracts to sell had already been duly perfected and Norma's refusal to sign the same would unduly prejudice petitioner. ISSUE: Whether or not the husband may validly dispose of a conjugal property of the without the wifes written consent. HELD: NO. The law requires that the disposition of a conjugal property by the husband as administrator in appropriate cases requires the written consent of the wife, otherwise, the disposition is void. Thus, Article 124 of the Family Code provides: Art. 124. The administration and enjoyment of the conjugal partnership property shall belong to both spouses jointly. In case of disagreement, the husband's decision shall prevail, subject to recourse to the court by the wife for a proper remedy, which must be availed of within five years from the date of the contract implementing such decision. The properties subject of the contracts in this case were conjugal; hence, for the contracts to sell to be effective, the consent of both husband and wife must concur. Even granting that respondent Norma actively participated in negotiating for the sale of the subject properties, which she denied, her written consent to the sale is required by law for its validity. Significantly, petitioner herself admits that Norma refused to sign the contracts to sell. Respondent Norma may have been aware of the negotiations for the sale of their conjugal properties. However, being merely aware of a transaction is not consent. 101) CARLOS VS. ABELARDO GR NO. 146504, April 9, 2002 DOCTRINE: The loan is the liability of the conjugal partnership FACTS: In October 1989, respondent and his wife Maria Theresa Carlos-Abelardo approached him and requested him to advance the amount of US$25,000.00 (P625, 000. 00) for the purchase of a house and lot. To enable and assist the spouses conduct their married life independently and on their own, petitioner, in October 31, 1989, issued a check in the name of a certain Pura Vallejo, seller of the property, who acknowledged receipt thereof. When petitioner inquired from the spouses in July 1991 as to the status of the amount he loaned to them, the latter acknowledged their obligation but pleaded that they were not yet in a position to make a definite settlement of the same. Thereafter, respondent expressed violent resistance to petitioners inquiries on the amount to the extent of making various death threats against petitioner. Despite formal demand for the payment of the said loan, spouses were unable to pay their obligation. Hence, this prompted petitioner to institute a collection suit against respondent and his wife. As they were separated in fact for more than a year prior to the filing of the complaint, respondent and his wife filed separate answers. Maria Theresa Carlos-Abelardo admitted securing a loan together with her husband, from petitioner. She claimed, however, that said loan was payable on a staggered basis so she was surprised when petitioner demanded immediate payment of the full amount. In his separate Answer, respondent admitted receiving the amount of US$25,000.00 but claimed that the said US$25,000.00 was never intended as

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loan of defendant. It was his share of income on contracts obtained by defendant. RTC ruled in favor of the petitioner. CA reversed. ISSUE: Whether or not the loan is chargeable to the conjugal partnership. HELD: Yes. The loan is the liability of the conjugal partnership pursuant to Article 121 of the Family Code: Article 121. The conjugal partnership shall be liable for: (2) All debts and obligations contracted during the marriage by the designated administrator-spouse for the benefit of the conjugal partnership of gains, or by both spouses or by one of them with the consent of the other; (3) Debts and obligations contracted by either spouse without the consent of the other to the extent that the family may have been benefited; If the conjugal partnership is insufficient to cover the foregoing liabilities, the spouses shall be solidarily liable for the unpaid balance with their separate properties. While respondent did not and refused to sign the acknowledgment executed and signed by his wife, undoubtedly, the loan redounded to the benefit of the family because it was used to purchase the house and lot which became the conjugal home of respondent and his family. Hence, notwithstanding the alleged lack of consent of respondent, under Art. 21 of the Family Code, he shall be solidarily liable for such loan together with his wife. Early in time, it must be noted that payment of personal debts contracted by the husband or the wife before or during the marriage shall not be charged to the conjugal partnership except insofar as they redounded to the benefit of the family. The defendants never denied that the check of US$25,000.00 was used to purchase the subject house and lot. They do not deny that the same served as their conjugal home, thus benefiting the family. On the same principle, acknowledgment of the loan made by the defendant-wife binds the conjugal partnership since its proceeds redounded to the benefit of the family. Hence, defendant-husband and 102) RELUCIO VS. ANGELINA MEJIA LOPEZ G.R. NO. 138497 January 16, 2002 FACTS: Angelina Mejia Lopez filed a petition for "APPOINTMENT AS SOLE ADMINISTRATIX OF CONJUGAL PARTNERSHIP OF PROPERTIES, FORFEITURE, ETC.," against defendant Alberto Lopez and petitioner Imelda Relucio. Angelina alleged that sometime in 1968, defendant Lopez, who is legally married to her, abandoned the latter and their four legitimate children; that he arrogated unto himself full and exclusive control and administration of the conjugal properties, that defendant Lopez maintained an illicit relationship and cohabited with petitioner since 1976. It was further alleged that defendant Lopez and petitioner Relucio, during their period of cohabitation have amassed a fortune consisting mainly of stockholdings in Lopez-owned or controlled corporations, residential, agricultural, commercial lots, houses, apartments and buildings, cars and other motor vehicles, bank accounts and jewelry. These properties, which are in the names of defendant Lopez and petitioner Relucio singly or jointly or their dummies and proxies, have been acquired principally if not solely through the actual contribution of money, property and industry of defendant Lopez with minimal, if not nil, actual contribution from petitioner Relucio. On December 8, 1993, a Motion to Dismiss the Petition was filed by herein petitioner on the ground that private respondent has no cause of action against her.An Order dated February 10, 1994 was issued by herein respondent Judge denying petitioner Relucio's Motion to Dismiss on the ground that she is impleaded as a necessary or indispensable party because some of the subject properties are registered in her name and defendant Lopez, or solely in her name. Petitioner filed with the Court of Appeals a petition for certiorari assailing the trial court's denial of her motion to dismiss. The Court of Appeals promulgated a decision denying the petition. ISSUE: Whether respondent's petition for appointment as sole administratrix of the conjugal property, accounting, etc. against her husband Alberto J. Lopez established a cause of action against petitioner. defendant-wife are jointly and severally liable in the payment of the loan.

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HELD:: No. The complaint is by an aggrieved wife against her husband. Nowhere in the allegations does it appear that relief is sought against petitioner. Respondent's causes of action were all against her husband. The first cause of action is for judicial appointment of respondent as administratrix of the conjugal partnership or absolute community property arising from her marriage to Alberto J. Lopez. Petitioner is a complete stranger to this cause of action. Article 128 of the Family Code refers only to spouses, to wit: "If a spouse without just cause abandons the other or fails to comply with his or her obligations to the family, the aggrieved spouse may petition the court for receivership, for judicial separation of property, or for authority to be the sole administrator of the conjugal partnership property xxx". The administration of the property of the marriage is entirely between them, to the exclusion of all other persons. Respondent alleges that Alberto J. Lopez is her husband. Therefore, her first cause of action is against Alberto J. Lopez. There is no right-duty relation between petitioner and respondent that can possibly support a cause of action. The second cause of action is for an accounting "by respondent husband." The accounting of conjugal partnership arises from or is an incident of marriage. Petitioner has nothing to do with the marriage between respondent Alberto J. Lopez. Hence, no cause of action can exist against petitioner on this ground. Respondent's alternative cause of action is for forfeiture of Alberto J. Lopez' share in the coowned property "acquired during his illicit relationship and cohabitation with [petitioner]" and for the "dissolution of the conjugal partnership of gains between him [Alberto J. Lopez] and the [respondent]." The third cause of action is essentially for forfeiture of Alberto J. Lopez' share in property co-owned by him and petitioner. It does not involve the issue of validity of the co-ownership between Alberto J. Lopez and petitioner. The issue is whether there is basis in law to forfeit Alberto J. Lopez' share, if any there be, in property co-owned by him with petitioner. Respondent's asserted right to forfeit extends to Alberto J. Lopez' share alone. Failure of Alberto J. Lopez to surrender such share, assuming the trial court finds in respondent's favor, results in a breach of an obligation to respondent and gives rise to a cause of action. Such cause of action, however, pertains to Alberto J. Lopez, not petitioner. The respondent also sought support. Support cannot be compelled from a stranger. The action in Special Proceedings M-3630 is, to use respondent Angelina M. Lopez' own words, one by "an aggrieved wife against her husband." 103) Homeowners Savings & Loan Bank vs. Miguela C. Dailo G.R. No. 153802, March 11, 2005 Facts During their marriage, respondents Miguela C. Dailo and Marcelino Dailo, Jr. purchased a house and lot with the Deed of Absolute Sale executed only in favor of the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. as vendee. Without the knowledge and consent of respondent Miguela Dailo, Marcelino Dailo, Jr. executed a Special Power of Attorney (SPA) in favor of Lilibeth Gesmundo, authorizing her to obtain a loan from petitioner Homeowners Savings and Loan Bank to be secured by the spouses Dailos house and lot. Gesmundo was able to obtain a loan from petitioner and as security executed a Real Estate Mortgage on the subject property in favor of petitioner. Upon maturity, the loan remained unpaid and as a result, petitioner instituted extrajudicial foreclosure proceedings on the mortgaged property. After the death of her husband, during one of her visits to the subject property, respondent learned that petitioner had already employed a certain Roldan Brion to clean its premises and that her car, a Ford sedan, was razed because Brion allowed a boy to play with fire within the premises. Claiming that she had no knowledge of the mortgage constituted on the subject property, which was conjugal in nature, respondent instituted a case for Nullity of Real Estate Mortgage and Certificate of Sale, Affidavit of Consolidation of Ownership, Deed of Sale, Reconveyance with Prayer for Preliminary Injunction and Damages against petitioner. In the latters Answer with Counterclaim, petitioner prayed for the dismissal of the complaint on the ground that the property in question was the exclusive property of the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. After trial on the merits, the trial court rendered a Decision in favor of the respondent, and upon elevation, the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial courts finding in the absence of clear and convincing evidence to rebut the presumption that the subject property was conjugal in nature. Hence, the appellate court declared as void the mortgage on the subject property because it was constituted without the knowledge and consent of respondent, in accordance with Article 124 of the Family Code. With respect to the damage to respondents car, the appellate court found petitioner to be liable because it is responsible for the consequences of the acts or omissions of the person it hired to accomplish the assigned task. All told, the appellate court affirmed

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the trial courts Decision, but deleted the award for damages and attorneys fees for lack of basis. As a response to above decision, petitioner filed a petition for review on certiorari assailing the Decision of the Court of Appeals, which affirmed with modification the Decision of the Regional Trial Court. Petitioner argues that although Article 124 of the Family Code requires the consent of the other spouse to the mortgage of conjugal properties, the framers of the law could not have intended to curtail the right of a spouse from exercising full ownership over the portion of the conjugal property pertaining to him under the concept of co-ownership. Thus, petitioner would like the Court to uphold the validity of the mortgage to the extent of the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr.s share in the conjugal partnership. In addition, petitioner imposes the liability for the payment of the principal obligation obtained by the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. on the conjugal partnership to the extent that it redounded to the benefit of the family. Issues 1. Whether or not the mortgage constituted by the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. on the subject property as co-owner thereof is valid as to his undivided share. 2. Whether or not the conjugal partnership is liable for the payment of the loan obtained by the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. the same having redounded to the benefit of the family. Held On the first issue, the Court cited the case, Guiang v. Court of Appeals, where it was held that the sale of a conjugal property requires the consent of both the husband and wife and the same principle shall squarely applies to the instant case. Respondent and the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. were married on August 8, 1967. In the absence of a marriage settlement, the system of relative community or conjugal partnership of gains governed the property relations between respondent and her late husband. With the effectivity of the Family Code on August 3, 1988, Chapter 4 on Conjugal Partnership of Gains in the Family Code was made applicable to conjugal partnership of gains already established before its effectivity unless vested rights have already been acquired under the Civil Code or other laws. The rules on co-ownership do not even apply to the property relations of respondent and the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. even in a suppletory manner. The regime of conjugal partnership of gains is a special type of partnership, where the husband and wife place in a common fund the proceeds, products, fruits and income from their separate properties and those acquired by either or both spouses through their efforts or by chance. Unlike the absolute community of property wherein the rules on coownership apply in a suppletory manner, the conjugal partnership shall be governed by the rules on contract of partnership in all that is not in conflict with what is expressly determined in the chapter (on conjugal partnership of gains) or by the spouses in their marriage settlements. Thus, the property relations of respondent and her late husband shall be governed, foremost, by Chapter 4 on Conjugal Partnership of Gains of the Family Code and, suppletorily, by the rules on partnership under the Civil Code. In case of conflict, the former prevails because the Civil Code provisions on partnership apply only when the Family Code is silent on the matter. The basic and established fact is that during his lifetime, without the knowledge and consent of his wife, Marcelino Dailo, Jr. constituted a real estate mortgage on the subject property, which formed part of their conjugal partnership. By express provision of Article 124 of the Family Code, in the absence of (court) authority or written consent of the other spouse, any disposition or encumbrance of the conjugal property shall be void. The aforequoted provision does not qualify with respect to the share of the spouse who makes the disposition or encumbrance in the same manner that the rule on co-ownership under Article 493 of the Civil Code does. Where the law does not distinguish, courts should not distinguish. Thus, both the trial court and the appellate court are correct in declaring the nullity of the real estate mortgage on the subject property for lack of respondents consent. On the second issue, the Court cited that under Article 121 of the Family Code, The conjugal partnership shall be liable for: . . . (3) Debts and obligations contracted by either spouse without the consent of the other to the extent that the family may have been benefited; . . . . For the subject property to be held liable, the obligation contracted by the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. must have redounded to the benefit of the conjugal partnership. There must be the requisite showing then of some advantage which clearly accrued to the welfare of the spouses. Certainly, to make a conjugal partnership respond for a liability that should appertain to the husband alone is to defeat and frustrate the avowed objective of the new Civil Code to show the utmost concern for the solidarity and well-being of the family as a unit. The burden of proof that the debt was contracted for the benefit of the conjugal partnership of gains lies

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with the creditor-party litigant claiming as such. Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat (he who asserts, not he who denies, must prove). Petitioners sweeping conclusion that the loan obtained by the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. to finance the construction of housing units without a doubt redounded to the benefit of his family, without adducing adequate proof, does not persuade this Court. Other than petitioners bare allegation, there is nothing from the records of the case to compel a finding that, indeed, the loan obtained by the late Marcelino Dailo, Jr. redounded to the benefit of the family. Consequently, the conjugal partnership cannot be held liable for the payment of the principal obligation. 104) In Re: Petition For Separation Of Property Elena Buenaventura Muller vs. Helmut Muller G.R. No. 149615, August 29, 2006 Facts Petitioner Elena Buenaventura Muller and respondent Helmut Muller were married in Germany. The couple resided in Germany at a house owned by respondents parents but decided to move and reside permanently in the Philippines in 1992. By this time, respondent had inherited the house in Germany from his parents which he sold and used the proceeds for the purchase of a parcel of land in Antipolo Rizal at the cost of P528,000.00 and the construction of a house amounting to P2,300,000.00. The Antipolo property was registered in the name of petitioner. Due to incompatibilities, respondent filed a petition for separation of properties before the Regional Trial Court. The trial court rendered a decision which terminated the regime of absolute community of property between the petitioner and respondent. It also decreed the separation of properties between them and ordered the equal partition of personal properties located within the country, excluding those acquired by gratuitous title during the marriage. With regard to the Antipolo property, the court held that it was acquired using paraphernal funds of the respondent. However, it ruled that respondent cannot recover his funds because the property was purchased in violation of Section 7, Article XII of the Constitution. However, pursuant to Article 92 of the Family Code, properties acquired by gratuitous title by either spouse during the marriage shall be excluded from the community property. The real property, therefore, inherited by respondent-petitioner in Germany is excluded from the absolute community of property of the herein spouses. Necessarily, the proceeds of the sale of said real property as well as the personal properties purchased thereby, belong exclusively to the respondent-petitioner. However, the part of that inheritance used by the respondent-petitioner for acquiring the house and lot in this country cannot be recovered by the respondent-petitioner, its acquisition being a violation of Section 7, Article XII of the Constitution which provides that "save in cases of hereditary succession, no private lands shall be transferred or conveyed except to individuals, corporations or associations qualified to acquire or hold lands of the public domain." The law will leave the parties in the situation where they are in without prejudice to a voluntary partition by the parties of the said real property. Hence, as regards the property situated in Antipolo and the improvements thereon, the Court shall not make any pronouncement on constitutional grounds. Respondent appealed to the Court of Appeals which rendered the assailed decision modifying the trial courts Decision. It held that respondent merely prayed for reimbursement for the purchase of the Antipolo property, and not acquisition or transfer of ownership to him. It also considered petitioners ownership over the property in trust for the respondent. As regards the house, the Court of Appeals ruled that there is nothing in the Constitution which prohibits respondent from acquiring the same. Issue Whether or not the respondent is entitled to reimbursement of the amount used to purchase the land as well as the costs for the construction of the house. Held The Court held that the Court of Appeals erred in holding that an implied trust was created and resulted by operation of law in view of petitioners marriage to respondent. Save for the exception provided in cases of hereditary succession, respondents disqualification from owning lands in the Philippines is absolute. Not even an ownership in trust is allowed. Besides, where the purchase is made in violation of an existing statute and in evasion of its express provision, no trust can result in favor of the party who is guilty of the fraud. To hold otherwise would allow circumvention of the constitutional prohibition. Invoking the principle that a court is not only a court of law but also a court of equity is likewise misplaced. He who seeks equity must do equity,

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and he who comes into equity must come with clean hands. Thus, in the instant case, respondent cannot seek reimbursement on the ground of equity where it is clear that he willingly and knowingly bought the property despite the constitutional prohibition. Further, the distinction made between transfer of ownership as opposed to recovery of funds is a futile exercise on respondents part. To allow reimbursement would in effect permit respondent to enjoy the fruits of a property which he is not allowed to own. In view of the foregoing, the Court ordered the Decision of the Court of Appeals to be REVERSED and SET ASIDE. The Decision of the Regional Trial Court terminating the regime of absolute community between the petitioner and respondent, decreeing a separation of property between them and ordering the partition of the personal properties located in the Philippines equally, is REINSTATED. 105) Agapay vs. Palang 276 SCRA 341 Facts Miguel Palang contracted his first marriage with private respondent Carlina (or Cornelia) Vallesterol in 1949. A few months after the wedding, he left to work in Hawaii. The trial court found evidence that as early as 1957, Miguel had attempted to divorce Carlina in Hawaii. On July 15, 1973, the then sixty-three-year-old Miguel contracted his second marriage with nineteen-year-old Erlinda Agapay, herein petitioner. Two months earlier, on May 17, 1973, Miguel and Erlinda, as evidenced by the Deed of Sale, jointly purchased a parcel of agricultural land located in Pangasinan. Consequently, a Transfer Certificate of Title covering said rice land was issued in their names. A house and lot in Pangasinan was likewise purchased on September 23, 1975, allegedly by Erlinda as the sole vendee. A Transfer Certificate of Title covering said property was later issued in her name. On October 30, 1975, Miguel and Cornelia Palang executed a Deed of Donation as a form of compromise agreement to settle and end a case filed by the latter. The parties therein agreed to donate their conjugal property consisting of six parcels of land to their only child, Herminia Palang. Miguel and Erlindas cohabitation produced a son, Kristopher A. Palang. In 1979, Miguel and Erlinda were convicted of Concubinage upon Carlinas complaint and two years later, Miguel died. On July 11, 1981, Carlina Palang and her daughter Herminia Palang de la Cruz, herein private respondents, instituted an action for recovery of ownership and possession with damages against petitioner before the Regional Trial Court. Private respondents sought to get back the riceland and the house and lot allegedly purchased by Miguel during his cohabitation with petitioner. Petitioner, as defendant below, contended that while the riceland is registered in their names (Miguel and Erlinda), she had already given her half of the property to their son Kristopher Palang. She added that the house and lot is her sole property, having bought the same with her own money. Erlinda added that Carlina is precluded from claiming aforesaid properties since the latter had already donated their conjugal estate to Herminia. After trial on the merits, the lower court rendered its decision dismissing the complaint after declaring that there was little evidence to prove that the subject properties pertained to the conjugal property of Carlina and Miguel Palang. On appeal, respondent court reversed the trial courts decision. The Court of Appeals declared the plaintiffs-appellants as the owners of the riceland and the house and lot allegedly purchased by Miguel during his cohabitation with defendant appellee. Issue Whether or not petitioner can be considered as the rightful co-owner of the riceland and the house and lot. Held The Court held that under Article 148 of the Family Code, providing for cases of cohabitation when a man and a woman who are not capacitated to marry each other live exclusively with each other as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage or under a void marriage, only the properties acquired by both of the parties through their actual joint contribution of money, property or industry shall be owned by them in common in proportion to their respective contributions. It must be stressed that actual contribution is required by this provision. If the actual contribution of the party is not proved, there will be no co-ownership and no presumption of equal shares. In the case at bar, Erlinda tried to establish by her testimony that she is engaged in the business of buy and sell and had a sari-sari store but failed to persuade the Court that she actually contributed money to buy the subject riceland. Worth noting is the fact that on the date of conveyance, May 17, 1973, petitioner was only around twenty years of age

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and Miguel Palang was already sixty-four and a pensioner of the U.S. Government. Considering her youthfulness, it is unrealistic to conclude that in 1973 she contributed P3,750.00 as her share in the purchase price of subject property, there being no proof of the same. Petitioner again claims that the riceland was bought two months before Miguel and Erlinda actually cohabited. In the nature of an afterthought, said added assertion was intended to exclude their case from the operation of Article 148 of the Family Code. Proof of the precise date when they commenced their adulterous cohabitation not having been adduced, the Court cannot state definitively that the riceland was purchased even before they started living together. In any case, even assuming that the subject property was bought before cohabitation, the rules of co-ownership would still apply and proof of actual contribution would still be essential. Since petitioner failed to prove that she contributed money to the purchase price of the riceland, the Court finds no basis to justify her coownership with Miguel over the same. Consequently, the riceland should revert to the conjugal partnership property of the deceased Miguel and private respondent Carlina Palang. With respect to the house and lot, Erlinda allegedly bought the same for P20,000.00 on when she was only 22 years old. The testimony of the notary public who prepared the deed of conveyance for the property reveals the falsehood of this claim. Atty. Constantino Sagun testified that Miguel Palang provided the money for the purchase price and directed that Erlindas name alone be placed as the vendee. The transaction was properly a donation made by Miguel to Erlinda, but one which was clearly void and inexistent by express provision of law because it was made between persons guilty of adultery or concubinage at the time of the donation, under Article 739 of the Civil Code. Moreover, Article 87 of the Family Code expressly provides that the prohibition against donations between spouses now applies to donations between persons living together as husband and wife without a valid marriage. Herein respondents were the plaintiffs in an action for ejectment filed before the MTC of Valenzuela against herein Petitioner Guillerma Tumlos, Toto Tumlos, and Gina Tumlos. In their complaint, the said spouses alleged that they are the absolute owners of an apartment building located at ARTE SUBDIVISION III; that through tolerance they had allowed the defendants-private respondents to occupy the apartment building for the last seven (7) years without the payment of any rent; that it was agreed upon that after a few months, defendant Guillerma Tumlos will pay P1,600.00 a month while the other defendants promised to pay P1,000.00 a month, both as rental, which agreement was not complied with by the said defendants; that they have demanded several times for the defendants to vacate the premises, as they are in need of the property for the construction of a new building; and that they have also demanded payment of P84,000.00 from Toto and Gina Tumlos representing rentals for seven (7) years and payment of P143,600.00 from Guillerma Tumlos as unpaid rentals for seven (7) years, but the said demands went unheeded. Petitioner Guillerma Tumlos was the only one who filed an answer to the complaint. She averred therein that the Fernandez spouses had no cause of action against her, since she is a co-owner of the subject premises as evidenced by a Contract to Sell wherein it was stated that she is a co-vendee of the property in question together with Respondent Mario Fernandez. Thus, she asked for the dismissal of the complaint. After an unfruitful preliminary conference, the MTC required the parties to submit their affidavits and other evidence on the factual issues defined in their pleadings within ten (10) days from receipt of such order and thereafter promulgated its judgment. Upon appeal to the RTC, petitioner and the two other defendants alleged in their memorandum on appeal that Respondent Mario Fernandez and Petitioner Guillerma had an amorous relationship, and that they acquired the property in question as their love nest. It was further alleged that they lived together in the said apartment building with their two (2) children for around ten (10) years, and that Guillerma administered the property by collecting rentals from the lessees of the other apartments, until she discovered that Respondent Mario deceived her as to the annulment of his marriage. In the same memorandum, petitioner and the two other defendants further averred that it was only recently that Toto Tumlos was temporarily accommodated in one of the rooms of the subject premises while Gina Tumlos acted as a nanny for

106) Tumlos vs. Fernandez 330 SCRA 718 Facts

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the children. In short, their presence there was only transient and they were not tenants of the Fernandez spouses. The RTC subsequently rendered a decision affirming in toto the judgment of the MTC. The petitioner and the two other defendants filed a motion for reconsideration, alleging that the decision of affirmance by the RTC was constitutionally flawed for failing to point out distinctly and clearly the findings of facts and law on which it was based vis-vis the statements of issues they have raised in their memorandum on appeal. They also averred that the Contract to Sell presented by the plaintiffs which named the buyer as Mario P. Fernandez, of legal age, married to Lourdes P. Fernandez, should not be given credence as it was falsified to appear that way. According to them, the Contract to Sell originally named Guillerma Fernandez as the spouse of Respondent Mario. As found by the RTC in its judgment, a new Contract to Sell was issued by the sellers naming the respondents as the buyers after the latter presented their marriage contract and requested a change in the name of the vendee-wife. Such facts necessitate the conclusion that Guillerma was really a co-owner thereof, and that the respondents manipulated the evidence in order to deprive her of her rights to enjoy and use the property as recognized by law. The RTC subsequently ruled that the Contract to Sell submitted by the Fernandez spouses appeared not to be authentic, as there was an alteration in the name of the wife of Respondent Mario Fernandez. Hence, the contract presented by the respondents cannot be given any weight. The court further ruled that Guillerma and Respondent Mario acquired the property during their cohabitation as husband and wife, although without the benefit of marriage. From such findings, the court concluded that Petitioner Guillerma Tumlos was a co-owner of the subject property and could not be ejected therefrom. The CA reversed the decision of the RTC. The CA ruled that from the inception of the instant case, the only defense presented by private respondent Guillerma is her right as a co-owner of the subject property, which was not satisfactorily proven by Guillerma. It was only on appeal that Guillerma alleged that she cohabited with the petitionerhusband without the benefit of marriage, and that she bore him two (2) children. Attached to her memorandum on appeal are the birth certificates of the said children. Such contentions and documents should not have been considered by the RTC, as they were not presented in her affidavit/position paper before the MTC. Even if the said allegations and documents could be considered, the claim of coownership must still fail as Respondent Mario Fernandez is validly married to Respondent Lourdes Fernandez as per Marriage Contract. Guillerma and Mario are not capacitated to marry each other. Thus, the property relations governing their supposed cohabitation is that found in Article 148 of the Family Code. It is clear that actual contribution is required by this provision. Hence, if actual contribution of the party is not proved, there will be no co-ownership and no presumption of equal shares. In the instant case, no proof of actual contribution by Guillerma Tumlos in the purchase of the subject property was presented. Her only evidence was her being named in the Contract to Sell as the wife of Respondent Mario Fernandez. Since she failed to prove that she contributed money to the purchase price of the subject apartment building, the Court finds no basis to justify her co-ownership with Respondent Mario. The said property is thus presumed to belong to the conjugal partnership property of Mario and Lourdes Fernandez, it being acquired during the subsistence of their marriage and there being no other proof to the contrary. The RTC also found that Respondent Mario has two (2) children with Guillerma who are in her custody, and that to eject them from the apartment building would be to run counter with the obligation of the former to give support to his minor illegitimate children, which indispensably includes dwelling. Such finding has no leg to stand on, it being based on evidence presented for the first time on appeal. Even assuming arguendo that the said evidence was validly presented, the RTC failed to consider that the need for support cannot be presumed. Article 203 of the Family Code expressly provides that the obligation to give support shall be demandable from the time the person who has a right to receive the same needs it for maintenance, but it shall not be paid except from the date of judicial or extrajudicial demand. Issues 1. Whether or not the petitioner is a co-owner of the property pursuant to Article 148 of the Family Code. 2. Whether or not the petitioners claim for support bar the subject ejectment suit. Held On the first issue, the Court held that it cannot accept petitioners submission that she is a coowner of the disputed property pursuant to Article 144 of the Civil Code. As correctly held by the CA, the applicable law is not Article 144 of the Civil Code, but Article 148 of the Family Code. Under

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Article 148 of the Family Code, a man and a woman, who are not legally capacitated to marry each other, but who nonetheless live together conjugally, may be deemed co-owners of a property acquired during the cohabitation only upon proof that each made an actual contribution to its acquisition. Hence, mere cohabitation without proof of contribution will not result in a co-ownership. Article 144 of the Civil Code applies only to a relationship between a man and a woman, who are not incapacitated to marry each other, or to one in which the marriage of the parties is void from the beginning. It does not apply to a cohabitation that amounts to adultery or concubinage, for it would be absurd to create a co-ownership where there exists a prior conjugal partnership or absolute community between the man and his lawful wife. Based on evidence presented by respondents, as well as those submitted by petitioner herself before the RTC, it is clear that Mario Fernandez was incapacitated to marry petitioner because he was legally married to Lourdes Fernandez. It is also clear that, as readily admitted by petitioner, she cohabited with Mario in a state of concubinage. Therefore, Article 144 of the Civil Code is inapplicable. In this case, petitioner fails to present any evidence that she had made an actual contribution to purchase the subject property. Likewise, her claim of having administered the property during the cohabitation is unsubstantiated and in any event, this fact by itself does not justify her claim, for nothing in Article 148 of the Family Code provides that the administration of the property amounts to a contribution in its acquisition. Clearly, there is no basis for petitioners claim of co-ownership. The property in question belongs to the conjugal partnership of respondents. Hence, the MTC and the CA were correct in ordering the ejectment of petitioner from the premises. On the second issue, the Court disagree with the petitioner that the childrens right to support, which necessarily includes shelter, prevails over the right of respondents to eject her. The Court emphasized that the case at bar is an ejectment suit whereby respondents seek to exercise their possessory right over their property. It is summary in character and deals solely with the issue of possession of the property in dispute and it has been shown that they have a better right to possess it than does the petitioner, whose right to possess is based merely on their tolerance. Further, Article 298 of the Civil Code expressly provides that the obligation to give support shall be demandable from the time the person who has a right to receive the same need it for maintenance, but it shall not be paid except from the date of judicial and extrajudicial demand. In this case, none was made. 107) Eustaquio Mallilin vs. Ma. Elvira Castillo 333 SCRA 628 Facts On February 24, 1993, petitioner Eustaquio Mallilin, Jr. filed a complaint for "Partition and/or Payment of Co-Ownership Share, Accounting and Damages" against respondent Ma. Elvira Castillo. The complaint alleged that petitioner and respondent, both married and with children, but separated from their respective spouses, cohabited after a brief courtship sometime in 1979 while their respective marriages still subsisted. During their union, they set up the Superfreight Customs Brokerage Corporation, with petitioner as president and chairman of the board of directors, and respondent as vice-president and treasurer. The business flourished and petitioner and respondent acquired real and personal properties which were registered solely in respondent's name. In 1992, due to irreconcilable differences, the couple separated. Petitioner demanded from respondent his share in the subject properties, but respondent refused alleging that said properties had been registered solely in her name. In her Amended Answer, respondent admitted that she engaged in the customs brokerage business with petitioner but alleged that the Superfreight Customs Brokerage Corporation was organized with other individuals and duly registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission in 1987. She denied that she and petitioner lived as husband and wife because the fact was that they were still legally married to their respective spouses. She claimed to be the exclusive owner of all real personal properties involved in petitioner's action for partition on the ground that they were acquired entirely out of her own money and registered solely in her name. On November 25, 1994, respondent filed a Motion for Summary Judgment, in accordance with Rule 34 of the Rules of Court. She contended that summary judgment was proper, because the issues raised in the pleadings were sham and not genuine. The respondent contended that even if she and petitioner actually cohabited, petitioner could not validly claim a part of the subject real and personal properties because Art. 144 of the Civil Code, which provides that the rules on co-ownership shall govern the properties acquired by a man and a woman living together as husband and wife but not married, or under a marriage which is void ab initio, applies only if the parties are not in any way incapacitated to

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contract marriage. In the parties' case, their union suffered the legal impediment of a prior subsisting marriage. Thus, the question of fact being raised by petitioner, i.e., whether they lived together as husband and wife, was irrelevant as no coownership could exist between them. Further, respondent maintained that petitioner cannot be considered an unregistered co-owner of the subject properties on the ground that, since titles to the land are solely in her name, to grant petitioner's prayer would be to allow a collateral attack on the validity of such titles. Petitioner opposed respondent's Motion for Summary Judgment. 8 He contended that the case presented genuine factual issues and that Art. 144 of the Civil Code had been repealed by the Family Code which now allows, under Art. 148, a limited coownership even though a man and a woman living together are not capacitated to marry each other. Petitioner also asserted that an implied trust was constituted when he and respondent agreed to register the properties solely in the latter's name although the same were acquired out of the profits made from their brokerage business. Petitioner invoked Articles 1452 and 1453 of the Civil Code. On January 30, 1995, the trial court rendered its decision granting respondent's motion for summary judgment. It ruled that an examination of the pleadings shows that the issues involved were purely legal. The trial court also sustained respondent's contention that petitioner's action for partition amounted to a collateral attack on the validity of the certificates of title covering the subject properties. It held that even if the parties really had cohabited, the action for partition could not be allowed because an action for partition among coowners ceases to be so and becomes one for title if the defendant, as in the present case, alleges exclusive ownership of the properties in question. For these reasons, the trial court dismissed Case. On appeals, the Court of Appeals, ordered the case remanded to the court of origin for trial on the merits. It cited the decision in Roque v. Intermediate Appellate Court to the effect that an action for partition is at once an action for declaration of coownership and for segregation and conveyance of a determinate portion of the properties involved. If the defendant asserts exclusive title over the property, the action for partition should not be dismissed. Rather, the court should resolve the case and if the plaintiff is unable to sustain his claimed status as a co-owner, the court should dismiss the action, not because the wrong remedy was availed of, but because no basis exists for requiring the defendant to submit to partition. Resolving the issue whether petitioner's action for partition was a collateral attack on the validity of the certificates of title, the Court of Appeals held that since petitioner sought to compel respondent to execute documents necessary to effect transfer of what he claimed was his share, petitioner was not actually attacking the validity of the titles but in fact, recognized their validity. Finally, the appellate court upheld petitioner's position that Art. 144 of the Civil Code had been repealed by Art. 148 of the Family Code. Respondent moved for reconsideration of the decision of Court of Appeals. Subsequently, the Court of Appeals granted respondent's motion and reversed its previous decision. Issue Whether or not the fact that the petitioner and respondent indeed cohabited is material to determine co-ownership of properties between the parties. Held The Court held that although Art. 144 of the Civil Code, applies only to cases in which a man and a woman live together as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage provided they are not incapacitated or are without impediment to marry each other, or in which the marriage is void ab initio, provided it is not bigamous, therefore, does not cover parties living in an adulterous relationship. Art. 148 of the Family Code, however, provides for a limited co-ownership in cases where the parties in union are incapacitated to marry each other. It was error for the trial court to rule that, because the parties in this case were not capacitated to marry each other at the time that they were alleged to have been living together, they could not have owned properties in common. The Family Code, in addition to providing that a co-ownership exists between a man and a woman who live together as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage, likewise provides that, if the parties are incapacitated to marry each other, properties acquired by them through their joint contribution of money, property or industry shall be owned by them in common in proportion to their contributions which, in the absence of proof to the contrary, is presumed to be equal. There is thus co-ownership even though the couples are not capacitated to marry each other. In this case, there may be a co-ownership between the parties. Consequently, whether petitioner and respondent cohabited and whether the properties involved in the case are part of the alleged coownership, are genuine and material. All but one of the properties involved were alleged to have been

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acquired after the Family Code took effect on August 3, 1988. With respect to the property acquired before the Family Code took effect if it is shown that it was really acquired under the regime of the Civil Code, then it should be excluded. 108) Elna Mercado-Fehr vs. Bruno Fehr G.R. No. 152716, OCTOBER 23, 2003 Facts This case arose from a petition for declaration of nullity of marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity to comply with the essential marital obligations under Article 36 of the Family Code filed by petitioner Elna Mercado-Fehr against respondent Bruno Fehr before the Regional Trial Court of Makati in March 1997. After due proceedings, the trial court declared the marriage between petitioner and respondent void ab initio under Article 36 of the Family Code and ordered the dissolution of their conjugal partnership of property. Custody over the two minor children was awarded to petitioner. After a careful scrutiny of the inventory of properties submitted by both parties, the Court finds the following properties to be excluded from the conjugal properties: a) The Bacolod property, considering that the same is owned by petitioners parents; and b) Suite 204 of the LCG Condominium, considering that the same was purchased on installment basis by respondent with his exclusive funds prior to his marriage, as evidenced by a Contract to Sell dated July 26, 1983. In view of the above decision, Suite 204, LCG Condominium was declared the EXCLUSIVE PROPERTY of respondent. Accordingly, petitioner was directed to transfer ownership of Suite 204 in the name of respondent. The Petitioner and Respondent are further enjoined to jointly support their minor children, Michael and Patrick Fehr, for their education, uniforms, food and medical expenses. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration of said Order with respect to the adjudication of Suite 204, LCG Condominium and the support of the children. Petitioner alleged that Suite 204 was purchased on installment basis at the time when petitioner and respondent were living exclusively with each other as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage, hence the rules on co-ownership should apply in accordance with Article 147 of the Family Code. Resolving said motion, the trial court held that since the marriage between petitioner and respondent was declared void ab intio, the rules on co-ownership should apply in the liquidation and partition of the properties they own in common pursuant to Article 147 of the Family Code. The court, however, affirmed its previous ruling that Suite 204 of LCG Condominium was acquired prior to the couples cohabitation and therefore pertained solely to respondent. Petitioner filed a notice of appeal questioning the order of the trial court but subsequently withdrew the notice and instead filed a special civil action for certiorari and prohibition with the Court of Appeals, questioning the findings of the trial court. The Court of Appeals dismissed the petition for certiorari for lack of merit. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration of said Decision, which was also denied by the appellate court. Issue Whether or not Suite 204 of LCG Condominium should be governed by the rules on co-ownership and what rules should be applied in the settlement of the common properties? Held It appears from the facts, as found by the trial court, that in March 1983, after two years of long-distance courtship, petitioner left Cebu City and moved in with respondent in the latters residence in Metro Manila. Their relations bore fruit and their first child, Michael Bruno Fehr, was born on December 3, 1983. The couple got married on March 14, 1985. In the meantime, they purchased on installment a condominium unit, Suite 204, at LCG Condominium, as evidenced by a Contract to Sell dated July 26, 1983 executed by respondent as the buyer and J.V. Santos Commercial Corporation as the seller. Petitioner also signed the contract as witness, using the name "Elna Mercado Fehr". Upon completion of payment, the title to the condominium unit was issued in the name of petitioner. In light of these facts, the Court gave more credence to petitioners submission that Suite 204 was acquired during the parties cohabitation. Accordingly, under Article 147 of the Family Code, said property should be governed by the rules on coownership. Article 147 applies to unions of parties who are legally capacitated and not barred by any impediment to contract marriage, but whose marriage is nonetheless void, as in the case at bar. This provision creates a co-ownership with respect to the properties they acquire during their cohabitation. This peculiar kind of co-ownership applies when a man and a woman, suffering no legal impediment to marry each other, so exclusively live together as

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husband and wife under a void marriage or without the benefit of marriage. The term "capacitated" in the provision (in the first paragraph of the law) refers to the legal capacity of a party to contract marriage, i.e., any "male or female of the age of eighteen years or upwards not under any of the impediments mentioned in Article 37 and 38" of the Code. Under this property regime, property acquired by both spouses through their work and industry shall be governed by the rules on equal co-ownership. Any property acquired during the union is prima facie presumed to have been obtained through their joint efforts. A party who did not participate in the acquisition of the property shall still be considered as having contributed thereto jointly if said partys "efforts consisted in the care and maintenance of the family household." Thus, for Article 147 to operate, the man and the woman: (1) must be capacitated to marry each other; (2) live exclusively with each other as husband and wife; and (3) their union is without the benefit of marriage or their marriage is void. All these elements are present in the case at bar. It has not been shown that petitioner and respondent suffered any impediment to marry each other. They lived exclusively with each other as husband and wife when petitioner moved in with respondent in his residence and were later united in marriage. Their marriage, however, was found to be void under Article 36 of the Family Code because of respondents psychological incapacity to comply with essential marital obligations. The disputed property, Suite 204 of LCG Condominium, was purchased on installment basis on July 26, 1983, at the time when petitioner and respondent were already living together. Hence, it should be considered as common property of petitioner and respondent. Further, the Court held that the property regime of the parties should be divided in accordance with the law on co-ownership. 109) Saguid vs. Rey G.R. No. 150611.JUNE 10, 2003 Facts Gina S. Rey was married, but separated de facto from her husband, when she met petitioner Jacinto Saguid sometime in July 1987. After a brief courtship, the two decided to cohabit as husband and wife in a house built on a lot owned by Jacintos father. Jacinto made a living as the patron of their fishing vessel Saguid Brothers. Gina, on the other hand, worked as a fish dealer, but decided to work as an entertainer in Japan from 1992 to 1994. In 1996, the couple decided to separate. On January 9, 1997, private respondent filed a complaint for Partition and Recovery of Personal Property with Receivership against the petitioner. She alleged that from her salary as entertainer in Japan, she was able to contribute P70,000.00 in the completion of their unfinished house. Also, from her own earnings as an entertainer and fish dealer, she was able to acquire and accumulate appliances, pieces of furniture and household effects, with a total value of P111,375.00. She prayed that she be declared the sole owner of these personal properties and that the amount of P70,000.00, representing her contribution to the construction of their house, be reimbursed to her. Private respondent stated that she had a total of P35,465.00 share in the joint account deposit which she and the petitioner maintained. Gina declared that said deposits were spent for the purchase of construction materials, appliances and other personal properties. Petitioner, on the other hand, claimed that the expenses for the construction of their house were defrayed solely from his income. He averred that private respondents meager income as fish dealer rendered her unable to contribute in the construction of said house. Petitioner further contended that Gina did not work continuously in Japan from 1992 to 1994. When their house was repaired and improved sometime in 1995-1996, private respondent did not share in the expenses because her earnings as entertainer were spent on the daily needs and business of her parents. Petitioner further claimed that his savings from his income in the fishing business were the ones used in purchasing the disputed personal properties. The respondent was allowed to present evidence ex parte after the trial court declared the petitioner as in default for failure to file a pre-trial brief. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration but was denied. Subsequently, a decision was rendered in favor of the private respondent. On appeal, said decision was affirmed by the Court of Appeals except for the award for moral damages. Issue What provision of the Family Code shall governed the property regime of the petitioner and private respondent? Held The Court held that the property regime of Jacinto and Gina, who was validly married to another man at

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the time of her cohabitation with the former, should be governed by Article 148 of the Family Code, as it applies to adulterous relationships and under this regime, proof of actual contribution is required. In the case at bar, although the adulterous cohabitation of the parties commenced in 1987, which is before the date of the effectivity of the Family Code, Article 148 still applies because this provision was intended precisely to fill up the hiatus in Article 144 of the Civil Code. Before Article 148 of the Family Code was enacted, there was no provision governing property relations of couples living in a state of adultery or concubinage. Hence, even if the cohabitation or the acquisition of the property occurred before the Family Code took effect, Article 148 governs. In the case at bar, the controversy centers on the house and personal properties of the parties. Private respondent alleged in her complaint that she contributed P70,000.00 for the completion of their house. However, nowhere in her testimony did she specify the extent of her contribution. What appears in the record are receipts in her name for the purchase of construction materials in the total amount of P11,413.00. On the other hand, both parties claim that the money used to purchase the disputed personal properties came partly from their joint account. While there is no question that both parties contributed in their joint account deposit, there is, however, no sufficient proof of the exact amount of their respective shares therein. Pursuant to Article 148 of the Family Code, in the absence of proof of extent of the parties respective contribution, their share shall be presumed to be equal. Here, the disputed personal properties were valued at P111,375.00, the existence and value of which were not questioned by the petitioner. Hence, their share therein is equivalent to one-half, which is P 55,687.50 each. On the basis of the evidence established, the extent of private respondents co-ownership over the disputed house is only up to the amount of P11,413.00, her proven contribution in the construction thereof. While for the personal properties, her participation should be limited only to the amount of P55,687.50.

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XIII. THE FAMILY AS AN INSTITUTION 110) Hontiveros vs. RTC Br. 25, Iloilo City & Spouses Gregorio Hontiveros & Teodora Ayson G.R.No. 125465, June 29, 1999 Facts: Spouses Augusto and Maria Hontiveros filed a complaint for damages against private respondents Gregorio Hontiveros and Teodora Ayson before the RTC Iloilo City. Petitioners alleged that they are the owners of a land located at the town of Jamindan, Province of Capiz, as shown by OCT No. 0-2124, issued pursuant to the decision of the Intermediate Appellate Court which modified decision of CFI Capiz, in a land registration case filed by private respondent Gregorio Hontivero. Also, that they were deprived of income from the land as a result of the filing of the land registration case. The income consisted of rentals from tenants of the land in the amount of P66,000.00 per year from 1968 to 1987, and P595,000.00 per year thereafter; and that private respondents filed the land registration case and withheld possession of the land from petitioners in bad faith. Private respondents denied that they were married and alleged that private respondent Hontiveros was a widower while private respondent Ayson was single. They denied that they had deprived petitioners of possession of and income from the land. They alleged that possession of the property in question had already been transferred to petitioners on August 7, 1985, by virtue of a writ of possession, dated July 18, 1985, issued by the clerk of court of the RTC Capiz, Mambusao, the return thereof having been received by petitioners counsel. Since then, petitioners have been directly receiving rentals from the tenants of the land. The complaint failed to state a cause of action since it did not allege that earnest efforts towards a compromise had been made, considering that petitioner Augusto Hontiveros and private respondent Gregorio Hontiveros are brothers. The decision of the IAC in Land Registration Case was null and void since it was based upon a ground which was not passed upon by the trial court. That petitioners claim for damages was barred by prescription with respect to claims before 1984; that there were no rentals due since private respondent Hontiveros was a possessor in good faith and for value; and that private respondent Ayson had nothing to do with the case as she was not married to private respondent Gregorio Hontiveros and did not have any proprietary interest in the subject property. Private respondents prayed for the dismissal of the complaint and for an order against petitioners to pay damages to private respondents by way of counterclaim, as well as reconveyance of the subject land to private respondent. Issue: Whether or not the RTC palpably erred in dismissing the complaint on the ground that it does not allege under oath that earnest efforts toward a compromise were made prior to filing as required by Art. 151 of FC. Held: No. This rule shall not apply to cases which may not be the subject of compromise under the Civil Code. Moreover, as petitioners contend, Art. 151 of the Family Code does not apply in this case since the suit is not exclusively among family members. Petitioners claim that whenever a stranger is a party in a case involving family members, the requisite showing of earnest efforts to compromise is no longer mandatory. They argue that since private respondent Ayson is admittedly a stranger to the Hontiveros family, the case is not covered by the requirements of Art. 151 of the Family Code. We agree with petitioners. The inclusion of private respondent Ayson as defendant and petitioner Maria Hontiveros as plaintiff takes the case out of the ambit of Art. 151 of the Family Code. Under this provision, the phrase members of the same family refers to the husband and wife, parents and children, ascendants and descendants, and brothers and sisters, whether full or half-blood. In Gayon v. Gayon, the enumeration of brothers and sisters as members of the same family does not comprehend sisters-in-law. In that case, then Chief Justice Concepcion emphasized that sistersin-law (hence, also brothers-in-law) are not listed under Art. 217 of the New Civil Code as members of the same family. Since Art. 150 of the Family Code repeats essentially the same enumeration of members of the family, we find no reason to alter existing jurisprudence on the mater. Consequently, the court a quo erred in ruling that petitioner Guerrero, being a brother-in-law of private respondent Hernando, was required to exert earnest efforts towards a compromise before filing the present suit. Religious relationship and relationship by affinity are not given any legal effect in this jurisdiction. Consequently, private respondent Ayson, who is described in the complaint as the spouse of

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respondent Hontiveros, and petitioner Maria Hontiveros, who is admittedly the spouse of petitioner Augusto Hontiveros, are considered strangers to the Hontiveros family, for purposes of Art. 151. Petitioners finally question the constitutionality of Art. 151 of the Family Code on the ground that it in effect amends the Rules of Court. This, according to them, cannot be done since the Constitution reserves in favor of the Supreme Court the power to promulgate rules of pleadings and procedure. Considering the conclusion we have reached in this case, however, it is unnecessary for present purposes to pass upon this question. Courts do not pass upon constitutional questions unless they are the very lis mota of the case. 111) Guerrero vs. RTC Ilocos Norte, Judge Luis Bello & Pedro Hernando G.R. No. 109068 January 10, 1994 Facts: Filed by petitioner as an accion publicana against private respondent, this case assumed another dimension when it was dismissed by respondent Judge on the ground that the parties being brotherin-law the complaint should have alleged that earnest efforts were first exerted towards a compromise. Admittedly, the complaint does not allege that the parties exerted earnest efforts towards a compromise and that the same failed. However, private respondent Pedro G. Hernando apparently overlooked this alleged defect since he did not file any motion to dismiss nor attack the complaint on this ground in his answer. It was only at the pre-trial conference, that the relationship of petitioner Gaudencio Guerrero and Hernando was noted by respondent Judge Luis B. Bello, Jr. Guerrero claims that since brothers by affinity are not members of the same family, he was not required to exert efforts towards a compromise. Issue: Whether brothers by affinity are considered members of the same family contemplated in Art. 217, par. (4), and Art. 222 of the New Civil Code, as well as under Sec. 1, par. (j), Rule 16, of the Rules of Court requiring earnest efforts towards a compromise before a suit between them may be instituted and maintained. Held: No. The reason for the requirement that earnest efforts at compromise be first exerted before a complaint is given due course is because it is difficult to imagine a sadder and more tragic spectacle than a litigation between members of the same family. It is necessary that every effort should be made toward a compromise before a litigation is allowed to breed hate and passion in the family. It is known that a lawsuit between close relatives generates deeper bitterness than between strangers. A litigation in a family is to be lamented far more than a lawsuit between strangers . In Gayon v. Gayon, the enumeration of brothers and sisters as members of the same family does not comprehend sisters-in-law. The attempt to compromise as well as inability to succeed is a condition precedent to the the filing of a suit between members of the same family. Since Art. 150 of the Family Code repeats essentially the same enumeration of "members of the family", we find no reason to alter existing jurisprudence on the matter. Consequently, the court a quo erred in ruling that petitioner Guerrero, being a brother-in-law of private respondent Hernando, was required to exert earnest efforts towards a compromise before filing the present suit. Also, Guerreros wife has no actual interest and participation in the land subject of the suit, which the petitioner bought, before he married his wife. 112) Hiyas Savings and Loan Bank, Inc. vs. Hon. Edmundo Acua, RTC Judge Caloocan City and Alberto Moreno G.R. no. 154132 August 31, 2006 Facts: Alberto Moreno filed with the RTC of Caloocan City a complaint against Hiyas Savings and Loan Bank, his wife Remedios, the spouses Felipe and Maria Owe and the Register of Deeds of Caloocan City for cancellation of mortgage. Respondent Moreno contends that he did not secure any loan from petitioner, nor did he sign or execute any contract of mortgage in its favor; that his wife, acting in conspiracy with Hiyas and the spouses Owe, who were the ones that benefited from the loan, made it appear that he signed the contract of mortgage; that he could not have executed the said contract because he was working abroad. Petitioner filed a motion to dismiss because private respondent failed to comply with Article 151 of the

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Family wherein it is provided that no suit between members of the same family shall prosper unless it should appear from the verified complaint or petition that earnest efforts toward a compromise have been made, but that the same have failed. Petitioner contends that since the complaint does not contain any fact or averment that earnest efforts toward a compromise had been made prior to its institution, then the complaint should be dismissed for lack of cause of action. RTC denied the motion to dismiss, it held that earnest efforts towards a compromise is not required before the filing of the instant case considering that the above-entitled case involves parties who are strangers to the family. Issue: Whether or not lack of earnest efforts toward a compromise is not a ground for a motion to dismiss in suits between husband and wife when other parties who are strangers to the family are involved in the suit. Held: Yes. The Code Commission that drafted Article 222 of the Civil Code from which Article 151 of the Family Code was taken explains: it is difficult to imagine a sadder and more tragic spectacle than a litigation between members of the same family. It is necessary that every effort should be made toward a compromise before a litigation is allowed to breed hate and passion in the family. It is known that a lawsuit between close relatives generates deeper bitterness than between strangers. In Magbaleta vs. Gonong, the case involved brothers and a stranger to the family, the alleged owner of the subject property. The Court, taking into consideration the explanation made by the Code Commission in its report, ruled that: These consideration s do not however weigh enough to make it imperative that such efforts to compromise should be a jurisdictional pre-requisite for the maintenance of an action whenever a stranger to the family is a party thereto, whether as a necessary or indispensable one. It is not always that one who is alien to the family would be willing to suffer the inconvenience of; much less, relish the delay and the complications that wrangling between or among relatives more often than not entail. Besides, it is neither practical nor fair that the determination of the rights of a stranger to the family who just happened to have innocently acquired some kind of interest in any right or property disputed among its members should be made to depend on the way the latter would settle their differences among themselves. 22 x x x. Hence, once a stranger becomes a party to a suit involving members of the same family, the law no longer makes it a condition precedent that earnest efforts be made towards a compromise before the action can prosper. Petition is Dismissed. FAMILY HOME 113) Modequillo vs. Breva G.R. No. 86355 May 31, 1990 Facts: In 1988, a judgment was rendered by the Court of Appeals in "Francisco Salinas, et al. vs. Jose Modequillo, et al. finding the defendants-appellees Jose Modequillo and Benito Malubay jointly and severally liable to plaintiffs-appellants as compensation for the death of Audie Salinas for hospitalization expenses of Renato Culan- Culan. The said judgment having become final and executory, a writ of execution was issued by the RTC Davao City to satisfy the said judgment on the goods and chattels of the defendants Jose Modequillo and Benito Malubay at Malalag, Davao del Sur. The sheriff levied on a parcel of residential land located at Poblacion Malalag, Davao del Sur containing an area of 600 square meters with a market value of P34,550.00 and assessed value of P7,570.00 per Tax Declaration No. 87008-01359, registered in the name of Jose Modequillo in the office of the Provincial Assessor of Davao del Sur; and a parcel of agricultural land located at Dalagbong Bulacan, Malalag, Davao del Sur containing an area of 3 hectares with a market value of P24,130.00 and assessed value of P9,650.00 per Tax Declaration No. 87-08-01848 registered in the name of Jose Modequillo in the office of the Provincial Assessor of Davao del Sur. A motion to quash and/or to set aside levy of execution was filed by defendant Jose Modequillo alleging that the residential land located at Poblacion Malalag is where the family home is built since 1969 prior to the commencement of this case and as such is exempt from execution, forced sale or attachment under Articles 152 and 153 of the Family Code except for liabilities mentioned in Article 155 thereof, and that the judgment debt sought to be enforced against the family home of defendant is not one of those enumerated under Article 155 of the Family Code. As to the agricultural land although it is

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declared in the name of defendant it is alleged to be still part of the public land and the transfer in his favor by the original possessor and applicant who was a member of a cultural minority was not approved by the proper government agency. An opposition thereto was filed by the plaintiffs. Issue: Whether or not a final judgment of the Court of Appeals in an action for damages may be satisfied by way of execution of a family home constituted under the Family Code. Held: Yes. Under the Family Code, a family home is deemed constituted on a house and lot from the time it is occupied as a family residence. There is no need to constitute the same judicially or extrajudicially as required in the Civil Code. If the family actually resides in the premises, it is, therefore, a family home as contemplated by law. Thus, the creditors should take the necessary precautions to protect their interest before extending credit to the spouses or head of the family who owns the home. Art. 155. The family home shall be exempt from execution, forced sale or attachment except: (1) For non-payment of taxes; (2) For debts incurred prior to the constitution of the family home; (3) For debts secured by mortgages on the premises before or after such constitution; and (4) For debts due to laborers, mechanics, architects, builders, material men and others who have rendered service or furnished material for the construction of the building. The exemption provided as aforestated is effective from the time of the constitution of the family home as such, and lasts so long as any of its beneficiaries actually resides therein. In the present case, the residential house and lot of petitioner was not constituted as a family home whether judicially or extrajudicially under the Civil Code. It became a family home by operation of law only under Article 153 of the Family Code. It is deemed constituted as a family home upon the effectivity of the Family Code on August 3, 1988 not August 4, one year after its publication in the Manila Chronicle on August 4, 1987 (1988 being a leap year). The contention of petitioner that it should be considered a family home from the time it was occupied by petitioner and his family in 1969 is not well- taken. Under Article 162 of the Family Code, it is provided that "the provisions of this Chapter shall also govern existing family residences insofar as said provisions are applicable." It does not mean that Articles 152 and 153 of said Code have a retroactive effect such that all existing family residences are deemed to have been constituted as family homes at the time of their occupation prior to the effectivity of the Family Code and are exempt from execution for the payment of obligations incurred before the effectivity of the Family Code. Article 162 simply means that all existing family residences at the time of the effectivity of the Family Code, are considered family homes and are prospectively entitled to the benefits accorded to a family home under the Family Code. Article 162 does not state that the provisions of Chapter 2, Title V have a retroactive effect. Is the family home of petitioner exempt from execution of the money judgment aforecited? No. The debt or liability which was the basis of the judgment arose or was incurred at the time of the vehicular accident on March 16, 1976 and the money judgment arising therefrom was rendered by the appellate court on January 29, 1988. Both preceded the effectivity of the Family Code on August 3, 1988. This case does not fall under the exemptions from execution provided in the Family Code. As to the agricultural land subject of the execution, the trial court correctly ruled that the levy to be made by the sheriff shall be on whatever rights the petitioner may have on the land. 114) Manacop vs. CA and F.F. CRUZ & CO., INC., G.R. No. 104875 November 13, 1992 Facts: Owing to the failure to pay the sub-contract cost pursuant to a deed of assignment signed between petitioner's corporation and private respondent herein, the latter filed on July 3, 1989, a complaint for a sum of money, with a prayer for preliminary attachment, against the former. As a consequence of the order on July 28, 1989, the corresponding writ for the provisional remedy was issued on August 11, 1989 which triggered the attachment of a parcel of land in Quezon City owned by Manacop Construction President Florante F. Manacop, herein petitioner. The petitioner insists that the attached property is a family home, having been occupied by him and his family since 1972, and is therefore exempt from attachment.

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RTC held that the subject property is not exempt from attachment. Issue: Whether or not the property of Florante Manacop is exempt from attachment. Held: No. The debt or liability which was the basis of the judgment arose or was incurred at the time of the vehicular accident on March 16, 1976 and the money judgment arising therefrom was rendered by the appellate court on January 29, 1988. Both preceded the effectivity of the Family Code on August 3, 1988. This case does not fall under the exemptions from execution provided in the Family Code. The contention of petitioner that it should be considered a family home from the time it was occupied by petitioner and his family in 1969 is not well-taken. Under Article 162 of the Family Code, it is provided that "the provisions of this Chapter shall also govern existing family residences insofar as said provisions are applicable." It does not mean that Articles 152 and 153 of said Code have a retroactive effect such that all existing family residences are deemed to have been constituted as family homes at the time of their occupation prior to the effectivity of the Family Code and are exempt from execution for the payment of obligations incurred before the effectivity of the Family Code. Article 162 simply means that all existing family residences at the time of the effectivity of the Family Code, are considered family homes and are prospectively entitled to the benefits accorded to a family home under the Family Code. Article 162 does not state that the provisions of Chapter 2, Title V have a retroactive effect. 115) Manacop vs. CA and E & L MERCANTILE INC. 227 SCRA 57 Facts: On March 10, 1972, Petitioner Florante F. Manacop and his wife Eulaceli purchased a 446-square-meter residential lot with a bungalow, in consideration of P75,000.00. The property is located at Commonwealth Village, Commonwealth Avenue, Quezon City. Private Respondent E & L Mercantile, Inc. filed a complaint against petitioner and F.F. Manacop Construction Co., Inc. before the RTC Pasig to collect an indebtedness of P3,359,218.45. Instead of filing an answer, petitioner and his company entered into a compromise agreement with private respondent. On July 15, 1986, E & L Mercantile filed a motion for execution which the lower court. However, execution of the judgment was delayed. Eventually, the sheriff levied on several vehicles and other personal properties of petitioner. In partial satisfaction of the judgment debt, these chattels were sold at public auction for which certificates of sale were correspondingly issued by the sheriff. Petitioner and his company filed a motion to quash the alias writs of execution and to stop the sheriff from continuing to enforce them on the ground that the judgment was not yet executory. Private respondent opposed the motion alleging that the property covered by TCT No. 174180 could not be considered a family home on the grounds that petitioner was already living abroad and that the property, having been acquired in 1972, should have been judicially constituted as a family home to exempt it from execution. RTC ruled in favor of private respondent. It held that petitioners residence was not exempt from execution as it was not duly constituted as a family home, pursuant to the Civil Code. CA affirmed. Issue: May a writ of execution of a final and executory judgment issued before the effectivity of the Family Code be executed on a house and lot constituted as a family home under the provision of said Code? HELD Yes. [The Court of Appeals committed no reversible error. On the contrary, its Decision and Resolution are supported by law and applicable jurisprudence.] Petitioner contends that the trial court erred in holding that his residence was not exempt from execution in view of his failure to show that the property involved has been duly constituted as a family home in accordance with law. He asserts that the Family Code and Modequillo require simply the occupancy of the property by the petitioner, without need for its judicial or extrajudicial constitution as a family home. Petitioner is only partly correct. True, under the Family Code which took effect on August 3, 1988, the subject property became his family home under the simplified process embodied in Article 153 of

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said Code. However, Modequillo explicitly ruled that said provision of the Family Code does not have retroactive effect. In other words, prior to August 3, 1988, the procedure mandated by the Civil Code had to be followed for a family home to be constituted as such. There being absolutely no proof that the subject property was judicially or extrajudicially constituted as a family home, it follows that the laws protective mantle cannot be availed of by petitioner. Since the debt involved herein was incurred and the assailed orders of the trial court issued prior to August 3, 1988, the petitioner cannot be shielded by the benevolent provisions of the Family Code. Petitioner contends that he should be deemed residing in the family home because his stay in the United States is merely temporary. He asserts that the person staying in the house is his overseer and that whenever his wife visited this country, she stayed in the family home. This contention lacks merit. The law explicitly provides that occupancy of the family home either by the owner thereof or by any of its beneficiaries must be actual. That which is actual is something real, or actually existing, as opposed to something merely possible, or to something which is presumptive or constructive. Actual occupancy, however, need not be by the owner of the house specifically. Rather, the property may be occupied by the beneficiaries enumerated by Article 154 of the Family Code. 116) Versola vs. Ong G.R. No. 164740 July 31, 2006 Facts: Private respondent Dr. Victoria T. Ong Oh granted a loan to a certain Dolores Ledesma in the amount of P1M. As a security for said loan, Ledesma issued to private respondent a check for the same amount dated 10 February 1993 and promised to execute a deed of real estate mortgage over her house and lot located at Tandang Sora, Quezon City which did not materialize. Subsequently, Ledesma sold the said house and lot to petitioners for P2.5M. Petitioners paid Ledesma P1M as downpayment, with the remaining balance of P1.5M to be paid in monthly installments of P75,000. Petitioners, however, were only able to pay the amount of P50,000.00 to Ledesma. To raise the full amount that Ledesma demanded, petitioners applied for a loan with Asiatrust Bank, Inc. (Asiatrust) in the amount of P2M. In the course of the application for said loan, petitioners, private respondent, and Ledesma convened with Asiatrust to arrive at a scheme to settle the obligation of Ledesma to private respondent and the obligation of petitioners to Ledesma. In keeping with the foregoing agreement, private respondent granted Ledesma an additional loan of P450,000.00. Ledesma, in turn, executed a Deed of Sale transferring the title of the subject property to petitioners. Private respondent then delivered the title of the said property to Asiatrust. The Deed of Sale was registered and the title in the name of Ledesma was cancelled and a new one was issued in the names of petitioners. Thereafter, Asiatrust approved the loan application of petitioners. However, when Asiatrust tried to register the Real Estate Mortgage covering the subject property executed in its favor by petitioners, it discovered a notice of levy on execution was annotated on the title in connection with Ledesma's obligation to a certain Miladay's Jewels, Inc., in the amount of P214,284.00. Because of this annotated encumbrance, Asiatrust did not register said Real Estate Mortgage and refused to release the P2M loan of petitioners. When private respondent presented Ledesma's check for payment, the same was dishonored for the reason that the account was already closed. Subsequently, when private respondent presented for payment the check issued by petitioners, the said check was likewise dishonored because there was a stop payment order. With the dishonor of the checks and with Asiatrust's refusal to release the P2M loan of petitioners, private respondent came away emptyhanded as she did not receive payment for the P1.5M loan she granted to Ledesma that was assumed by petitioners. As a result, private respondent filed a Complaint for Sum of Money against Ledesma, petitioners, and Asiatrust. RTC ruled in favor of Dr. Victoria T. Ong Oh. CA affirmed withmodification. Private respondent filed a Motion for Execution with the RTC. The property in the name of Spouses Versola were subsequently levied upon. On 5 August 2002, private respondent filed with the trial court an Ex-parte Motion for Issuance of Confirmation of Judicial Sale of Real Property of Sps. Eduardo and Elsa Versola. Petitioners opposed the said motion on the following grounds: (1) the property sold at the public auction is the family home of petitioners which is exempt from execution pursuant to Article 155 of the Family Code; and (2)

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no application was made by private respondent for the determination of the value of their family home to be subjected to execution, as required under Article 160 of the Family Code. Petitioners maintain that said objection to the sale was based on the fact that there was no order or clearance from the trial court for the sheriff to proceed with the auction sale, in clear violation of Article 160 of the Family Code, which requires an application by the creditor and a determination of the actual value of the family home by the court ordering the sale of property under execution. Issue: Whether or not petitioners timely raised and proved that their property is exempt from execution. Held: No. Article 153 of the Family Code provides: The family home is deemed constituted on a house and lot from the time it is occupied as the family residence. From the time of its constitution and so long as its beneficiaries resides therein, the family home continues to be such and is exempt from execution, forced sale or attachment except as hereinafter provided and to the extent of the value allowed by law. Under the cited provision, a family home is deemed constituted on a house and lot from the time it is occupied as a family residence; there is no need to constitute the same judicially or extrajudicially. The settled rule is that the right to exemption or forced sale under Article 153 of the Family Code is a personal privilege granted to the judgment debtor and as such, it must be claimed not by the sheriff, but by the debtor himself before the sale of the property at public auction. It is not sufficient that the person claiming exemption merely alleges that such property is a family home. This claim for exemption must be set up and proved to the Sheriff. Failure to do so would estop the party from later claiming the exception. In the instant case, it was only after almost two years from the time of the execution sale and after the "Sheriff's Final Deed of Sale" was issued did petitioners rigorously claim in their Opposition to private respondent's Ex-parte Motion for Issuance of Confirmation of Judicial Sale of Real Property of Sps. Eduardo and Elsa Versola that the property in question is exempt from execution. Even then, there was no showing that petitioners adduced evidence to prove that it is indeed a family home. 117) Patricio vs. Marcelino G. Dario III and CA G.R. No. 170829 November 20, 2006 Facts: On July 5, 1987, Marcelino V. Dario died intestate. He was survived by his wife, petitioner Perla G. Patricio and their two sons, Marcelino Marc Dario and private respondent Marcelino G. Dario III. Among the properties he left was a parcel of land with a residential house and a pre-school building. On August 10, 1987, petitioner, Marcelino Marc and private respondent, extrajudicially settled the estate of Marcelino V. Dario. Thereafter, petitioner and Marcelino Marc formally advised private respondent of their intention to partition the subject property and terminate the co-ownership. Private respondent refused to partition the property hence petitioner and Marcelino Marc instituted an action for partition. The RTC ordered the partition and the sale of the property by public auction. The Court of Appeals dismissed the complaint for partition filed by petitioner and Marcelino Marc for lack of merit. It held that the family home should continue despite the death of one or both spouses as long as there is a minor beneficiary thereof. The heirs could not partition the property unless the court found compelling reasons to rule otherwise. The appellate court also held that the minor son of private respondent, who is a grandson of spouses Marcelino V. Dario and Perla G. Patricio, was a minor beneficiary of the family home. Issue: Whether Marcelino Lorenzo R. Dario IV, the minor son of private respondent, can be considered as a beneficiary under Article 154 of the Family Code. Held: No. Article 154 of the Family Code enumerates who are the beneficiaries of a family home: (1) The husband and wife, or an unmarried person who is the head of a family; and (2) Their parents, ascendants, descendants, brothers and sisters, whether the relationship be legitimate or illegitimate, who are living in the family home and who depend upon the head of the family for legal support. To be a beneficiary of the family home, three requisites must concur: (1) they must be among the relationships enumerated in Art. 154 of the Family Code; (2) they live in the family home; and (3) they are dependent for legal support upon the head of the family.

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As to the first requisite, the beneficiaries of the family home are: (1) The husband and wife, or an unmarried person who is the head of a family; and (2) Their parents, ascendants, descendants, brothers and sisters, whether the relationship be legitimate or illegitimate. The term descendants contemplates all descendants of the person or persons who constituted the family home without distinction; hence, it must necessarily include the grandchildren and great grandchildren of the spouses who constitute a family home. Ubi lex non distinguit nec nos distinguire debemos. Where the law does not distinguish, we should not distinguish. Thus, private respondents minor son, who is also the grandchild of deceased Marcelino V. Dario satisfies the first requisite. As to the second requisite, minor beneficiaries must be actually living in the family home to avail of the benefits derived from Art. 159. Marcelino Lorenzo R. Dario IV, also known as Ino, the son of private respondent and grandson of the decedent Marcelino V. Dario, has been living in the family home since 1994, or within 10 years from the death of the decedent, hence, he satisfies the second requisite. However, as to the third requisite, Marcelino Lorenzo R. Dario IV cannot demand support from his paternal grandmother if he has parents who are capable of supporting him. The liability for legal support falls primarily on Marcelino Lorenzo R. Dario IVs parents, especially his father, herein private respondent who is the head of his immediate family. The law first imposes the obligation of legal support upon the shoulders of the parents, especially the father, and only in their default is the obligation imposed on the grandparents. Marcelino Lorenzo R. Dario IV is dependent on legal support not from his grandmother, but from his father. Thus, despite residing in the family home and his being a descendant of Marcelino V. Dario, Marcelino Lorenzo R. Dario IV cannot be considered as beneficiary contemplated under Article 154 because he did not fulfill the third requisite of being dependent on his grandmother for legal support. It is his father whom he is dependent on legal support, and who must now establish his own family home separate and distinct from that of his parents, being of legal age.

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XIV. PATERNITY AND FILIATION 118) Andal vs. Macaraig G.R. No. L-2474 May 30, 1951 FACTS: Emiliano Andal was the owner of the parcel of land in question having acquired it from his mother Eduvigis Macaraig by virtue of a donation propter nuptias executed by the latter in favor of the former on the occasion of his marriage to Maria Dueas. Emiliano Andal had been in possession of the land from 1938 up to 1942, when Eduvigis Macaraig, taking advantage of the abnormal situation then prevailing, entered the land in question. Emiliano Andal became sick of tuberculosis in January 1941. Sometime thereafter, his brother, Felix, went to live in his house to help him work his farm. His sickness became worse that on or about September 10, 1942, he became so weak that he could hardly move and get up from his bed. On September 10, 1942, Maria Duenas, his wife, eloped with Felix, and both went to live in the house of Maria's father, until the middle of 1943. Since May, 1942, Felix and Maria had sexual intercourse and treated each other as husband and wife. On January 1, 1943, Emiliano died without the presence of his wife, who did not even attend his funeral. On June 17, 1943, Maria Dueas gave birth to a boy, who was given the name of Mariano Andal. If the son born to the couple is deemed legitimate, then he is entitled to inherit the land in question. If otherwise, then the land should revert back to Eduvigis Macaraig as the next of kin entitled to succeed him under the law. The lower court rendered judgment in favor of the plaintiffs. ISSUE: Whether or not the child born by Maria is considered as the legitimate son of Emiliano. HELD: Yes. Article 108 of the Civil Code provides that children born after the one hundred and eighty days next following that of the celebration of marriage or within the three hundred days next following its dissolution or the separation of the spouses shall be presumed to be legitimate. This presumption may be rebutted only by proof that it was physically impossible for the husband to have had access to his wife during the first one hundred and twenty days of the three hundred next preceding the birth of the child. Impossibility of access by husband to wife would include (1) absence during the initial period of conception, (2) impotence which is patent, continuing and incurable, and (3) imprisonment, unless it can be shown that cohabitation took place through corrupt violation of prison regulations. Since the boy was born on June 17, 1943, and Emiliano Andal died on January 1, 1943, that boy is presumed to be the legitimate son of Emiliano and his wife, he having been born within three hundred (300) days following the dissolution of the marriage. There was no evidence presented that Emiliano Andal was absent during the initial period of conception, especially during the period comprised between August 21, 1942 and September 10, 1942, which is included in the 120 days of the 300 next preceding the birth of the child Mariano Andal. On the contrary, there is enough evidence to show that during that initial period, Emiliano Andal and his wife were still living under the marital roof, or at least had access one to the other. Even if Felix, the brother, was living in the same house, and he and the wife were indulging in illicit intercourse since May, 1942, that does not preclude cohabitation between Emiliano and his wife. Also, even though Emiliano was already suffering from tuberculosis and his condition then was so serious that he could hardly move and get up from bed does not show that this does not prevent carnal intercourse. He was not impotent. The fact that Maria Dueas has committed adultery can not also overcome this presumption. Therefore, presumption of legitimacy under the Civil Code in favor of the child has not been overcome. Renren Geremia 119) Teofista Babiera vs. Presentacion B. Catotal G.R. No. 138493 June 15, 2000 FACTS: Presentacion B. Catotal filed with the Regional Trial Court of Lanao del Node, Branch II, Iligan City, a petition for the cancellation of the entry of birth of Teofista Babiera in the Civil Registry of Iligan City. The case was docketed as Special Proceedings No. 3046. From the petition filed, Presentacion asserted that she is the only surviving child of the late spouses Eugenio Babiera and Hermogena Cariosa, who died on May 26, 1996 and July 6, 1990 respectively. On September 20, 1996 a baby girl was delivered by "hilot" in the house of spouses Eugenio and Hermogena Babiera and without the knowledge of said spouses, Flora Guinto, the mother of the child and a housemaid of spouses Eugenio and Hermogena Babiera, caused the registration/recording of the facts of birth of her child, by simulating that she was the child of the spouses Eugenio, then 65 years old and Hermogena, then 54

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years old, and made Hermogena Babiera appear as the mother by forging her signature. Petitioner, then 15 years old, saw with her own eyes and personally witnessed Flora Guinto give birth to Teofista Guinto, in their house, assisted by "hilot". The birth certificate of Teofista Guinto is void ab initio, as it was totally a simulated birth, signature of informant forged, and it contained false entries, to wit: a) The child is made to appear as the legitimate child of the late spouses Eugenio Babiera and Hermogena Cariosa, when she is not; b) The signature of Hermogena Cariosa, the mother, is falsified/forged. She was not the informant; c) The family name Babiera is false and unlawful and her correct family name is Guinto, her mother being single; d) Her real mother was Flora Guinto and her status, an illegitimate child. The natural father, the carpenter, did not sign it. Also, the respondent Teofista Barbiera's birth certificate is void ab initio, and it is patently a simulation of birth, since it is clinically and medically impossible for the supposed parents to bear a child in 1956 because: a) Hermogena Cariosa Babiera, was already 54 years old; b) Hermogena's last child birth was in the year 1941, the year petitioner was born; c) Eugenio was already 65 years old, that the void and simulated birth certificate of Teofista Guinto would affect the hereditary rights of petitioner who inherited the estate. The trial court ruled in favor of the petitioner therein. Teofista averred "that she was always known as Teofista Babiera and not Teofista Guinto and that plaintiff is not the only surviving child of the late spouses Eugenio Babiera and Hermogena C. Babiera, for the truth of the matter is that they are sisters of the full-blood. The Court of Appeals held that the evidence adduced during trial proved that petitioner was not the biological child of Hermogena Babiera. It also ruled that no evidence was presented to show that Hermogena became pregnant in 1959. It further observed that she was already 54 years old at the time, and that her last pregnancy had occurred way back in 1941. The CA noted that the supposed birth took place at home, notwithstanding the advanced age of Hermogena and its concomitant medical complications. Moreover, petitioner's Birth Certificate was not signed by the local civil registrar, and the signature therein, which was purported to be that of Hermogena, was different from her other signatures. ISSUE: Whether or not Teofista is the legitimate child of spouses Eugenio Babiera and Hermogena Cariosa. HELD: No. Article 171 of the Family Code states that, the child's filiation can be impugned only by the father or, in special circumstances, his heirs. Respondent has the requisite standing to initiate the present action. Section 2, Rule 3 of the Rules of Court, provides that a real party in interest is one "who stands to be benefited or injured by the judgment in the suit, or the party entitled to the avails of the suit. The interest of respondent in the civil status of petitioner stems from an action for partition which the latter filed against the former. The case concerned the properties inherited by respondent from her parents. Moreover, Article 171 of the Family Code is not applicable to the present case. A close reading of this provision shows that it applies to instances in which the father impugns the legitimacy of his wife's child. The provision, however, presupposes that the child was the undisputed offspring of the mother. The present case alleges and shows that Hermogena did not give birth to petitioner. In other words, the prayer herein is not to declare that petitioner is an illegitimate child of Hermogena, but to establish that the former is not the latter's child at all. Verily, the present action does not impugn petitioner's filiation to Spouses Eugenio and Hermogena Babiera, because there is no blood relation to impugn in the first place. Also, the prescriptive period set forth in Article 170 of the Family Code does not apply. Verily, the action to nullify the Birth Certificate does not prescribe, because it was allegedly void ab initio. A birth certificate may be ordered cancelled upon adequate proof that it is fictitious. Thus, void is a certificate which shows that the mother was already fifty-four years old at the time of the child's birth and which was signed neither by the civil registrar nor by the supposed mother. Because her inheritance rights are adversely affected, the legitimate child of such mother is a proper party in the proceedings for the cancellation of the said certificate. Renren Geremia 120) Marissa Benitez-Badua vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 105625 January 24, 1994 FACTS: The facts show that the spouses Vicente Benitez and Isabel Chipongian owned various properties especially in Laguna. Isabel died on April 25, 1982. Vicente followed her in the grave on November 13, 1989. He died intestate.The fight for administration of Vicente's estate ensued. On September 24, 1990, private respondents Victoria Benitez-Lirio and

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Feodor Benitez Aguilar (Vicente's sister and nephew, respectively) instituted Sp. Proc. No. 797 (90) before the RTC of San Pablo City, 4th Judicial Region, Br. 30. They prayed for the issuance of letters of administration of Vicente's estate in favor of private respondent Aguilar. They alleged, that the decedent is survived by no other heirs or relatives either any ascendants or descendants, whether legitimate, illegitimate or legally adopted. Also, despite claims or representation to the contrary, petitioners can well and truly establish, given the chance to do so, that said decedent and his spouse Isabel Chipongian who pre-deceased him, and whose estate had earlier been settled extra-judicial, were without issue and/or without descendants whatsoever, and that one Marissa Benitez-Badua who was raised and cared by them since childhood is, in fact, not related to them by blood, nor legally adopted, and is therefore not a legal heir. Petitioner opposed the petition and alleged that she is the sole heir of the deceased Vicente Benitez and capable of administering his estate. The parties further exchanged reply and rejoinder to buttress their legal postures. Petitioner tried to prove that she is the only legitimate child of the spouses Vicente Benitez and Isabel Chipongian. She submitted documentary evidence, among others: (1) her Certificate of Live Birth; (2) Baptismal Certificate; (3) Income Tax Returns and Information Sheet for Membership with the GSIS of the late Vicente naming her as his daughter; and (4) School Records. She also testified that the said spouses reared and continuously treated her as their legitimate daughter. On the other hand, private respondents tried to prove, mostly thru testimonial evidence, that the said spouses failed to beget a child during their marriage and that the late Isabel, then thirty six (36) years of age, was even referred to Dr. Constantino Manahan, a noted obstetrician-gynecologist, for treatment. The trial court decided in favor of the petitioner. However, the Court of Appeals, reversed the said decision of the trial court. ISSUE: Whether or not petitioner is the legitimate child and thus the surviving heir of the spouses Benitez. HELD: No. A careful reading of Articles 164, 166, 170 and 171 of the Family Code will show that they do not contemplate a situation, like in the instant case, where a child is alleged not to be the child of nature or biological child of a certain couple. Rather, these articles govern a situation where a husband (or his heirs) denies as his own a child of his wife. Thus, it is the husband who can impugn the legitimacy of said child by proving: (1) it was physically impossible for him to have sexual intercourse, with his wife within the first 120 days of the 300 days which immediately preceded the birth of the child; (2) that for biological or other scientific reasons, the child could not have been his child; (3) that in case of children conceived through artificial insemination, the written authorization or ratification by either parent was obtained through mistake, fraud, violence, intimidation or undue influence. Articles 170 and 171 speak of the prescriptive period within which the husband or any of his heirs should file the action impugning the legitimacy of said child. Doubtless then, the appellate court did not err when it refused to apply these articles to the case at bench for it is not one where the heirs of the late Vicente are contending that petitioner is not his child by Isabel. Rather, their clear submission is that petitioner was not born to Vicente and Isabel. Factual finding of the appellate court that petitioner was not the biological child or child of nature of the spouses Vicente Benitez and Isabel Chipongian is meritorious. There was strong and convincing evidence that Isabel Chipongian never became pregnant and, therefore, never delivered a child. Renren Geremia 121) Jao vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. L-49162 July 28, 1987 FACTS: Petitioner, assisted by her mother, filed a case for recognition and support against Perico Jao. The latter denied paternity thus the parties agreed to a blood grouping test conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation. The result indicated that the petitioner could not have been the offspring of the latter and her mother, Arlene. The lower court found the test conclusive however, upon a second motion for reconsideration the trial resulted on the declaration of the petitioner being the child of Perico and is entitled to support. The latter questioned said decision to the Court of Appeals where it reversed said decision of the lower court. ISSUE: Whether or not the results of the blood grouping test are admissible and conclusive to prove non-paternity. HELD:

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Yes. The use of blood typing in cases of disputed percentage has already become an important legal procedure. There is now almost universal scientific agreement that blood grouping tests are conclusive as to non-paternity, although inconclusive to paternity. This is because the fact that the blood type of a child is a possible product of the mother and alleged father does not conclusively prove that the child is born by such parents. On the other hand, if the blood type of the child is not a possible blood type when the blood of the mother and that of the alleged father are cross-matched, then the child cannot possibly be that of the alleged father. Renren Geremia 122) Artemio G. Ilano vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 104376 February 23, 1994 FACTS: Leoncia first met petitioner Artemio G. Ilano while she was working as secretary to Atty. Mariano C. Virata. Petitioner was one of the clients of Atty. Virata. On several occasions, she and petitioner took lunch together. Sometime in 1957, Leoncia, then managing a business of her own as Namarco distributor, met petitioner again who was engaged in the same business and they renewed acquaintances. Since then, he would give her his unsold allocation of goods. Later, he courted her more than four years. Their relationship became intimate and with his promise of marriage, they eloped to Guagua, Pampanga in April, 1962. They stayed at La Mesa Apartment, located behind the Filipinas Telephone Company branch office, of which he is the president and general manager. He came home to her three or four times a week. The apartment was procured by Melencio Reyes, Officerin-Charge of the Filipinas Telephone Company branch office. He also took care of the marketing and paid rentals, lights and water bills. Unable to speak the local dialect, Leoncia was provided also by Melencio with a maid by the name of Nena. Petitioner used to give her P700.00 a month for their expenses at home. In June, 1962, Leoncia, who was conceiving at that time, was fetched by petitioner and they transferred to San Juan St., Pasay City. In October, 1962, she delivered a still-born female child at the Manila Sanitarium. The death certificate was signed by petitioner. Thereafter, while they were living at Highway 54, Makati, private respondent Merceditas S. Ilano was born on December 30, 1963 also at the Manila Sanitarium. Her birth was recorded as Merceditas de los Santos Ilano, child of Leoncia Aguinaldo de los Santos and Artemio Geluz Ilano. Leoncia submitted receipts issued by the Manila Sanitarium to show that she was confined there from December 30, 1963 until January 2, 1964 under the name of Mrs. Leoncia Ilano. The support by petitioner for Leoncia and Merceditas was sometimes in the form of cash personally delivered by him, thru Melencio, thru Elynia (niece of Leoncia) or thru Merceditas herself. Sometimes in the form of a check like Manila Banking Corporation Check No. 81532, the signature appearing thereon having been identified by Leoncia as that of petitioner because he often gives her checks which he issues at home and saw him sign the checks. During the time that petitioner and Leoncia were living as husband and wife, he showed concern as the father of Merceditas. When Merceditas was in Grade I at the St. Joseph Parochial School, he signed her Report Card for the fourth and fifth grading periods as her parent. Those signatures were both identified by Leoncia and Merceditas because he signed them in their residence in their presence and of Elynia. Since Merceditas started to have discernment, he was already the one whom she recognized as her Daddy. He treated her as a father would to his child. He would bring home candies, toys, and anything a child enjoys. He would take her for a drive, eat at restaurants, and even cuddle her to sleep. In May, 1963, Ruth Elynia Mabanglo, niece of Leoncia, lived with Leoncia and petitioner. She accompanied her aunt when she started having labor pains in the morning of December 30, 1963. Petitioner arrived after five o'clock in the afternoon. When the nurse came to inquire about the child, Leoncia was still unconscious so it was from petitioner that the nurse sought the information. Inasmuch as it was already past seven o'clock in the evening, the nurse promised to return the following morning for his signature. However, he left an instruction to give birth certificate to Leoncia for her signature, as he was leaving early the following morning. Prior to the birth of Merceditas, Elynia used to accompany her aunt and sometimes with petitioner in his car to the Manila Sanitarium for prenatal check-up. At times, she used to go to his office at 615 Sales St., Sta. Cruz, Manila, upon his instructions to get money as support and sometimes he would send notes of explanation if he cannot come which she in turn gave to her aunt. They stayed at 112 Arellano St., then Sta. Cruz, Manila in 1966 before they finally transferred to Gagalangin in 1967. Petitioner lived with them up to June, 1971 when he stopped coming home. ISSUE:

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Whether or not Merceditas is the child of Artemio and is entitled to support. HELD: Yes. Under the then prevailing provisions of the Civil Code, illegitimate children or those who are conceived and born out of wedlock were generally classified into two groups: (1) Natural, whether actual or by fiction, were those born outside of lawful wedlock of parents who, at the time of conception of the child, were not disqualified by any impediment to marry each other and (2) Spurious, whether incestuous, were disqualified to marry each other on account of certain legal impediments. Since petitioner had a subsisting marriage to another at the time Merceditas was conceived, she is a spurious child. In this regard, Article 287 of the Civil Code provides that illegitimate children other than natural in accordance with Article 269 and other than natural children by legal fiction are entitled to support and such successional rights as are granted in the Civil Code. The Civil Code has given these rights to them because the transgressions of social conventions committed by the parents should not be visited upon them. They were born with a social handicap and the law should help them to surmount the disadvantages facing them through the misdeeds of their parents. However, before Article 287 can be availed of, there must first be a recognition of paternity either voluntarily or by court action. The Court finds that there is sufficient evidence of recognition on the part of petitioner. The evidences submitted like the signature in the report cards, testimonies, and other pieces of evidence shows that petitioner indeed recognized Merceditas as his child and thus entitles her to support. Renren Geremia 123) Corito Ocampo Tayag vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 95229 June 9, 1992 FACTS: Private respondent is the mother and legal guardian of her minor son, Chad Cuyugan, by the father of the petitioner, the late Atty. Ricardo Ocampo. Petitioner is the known administratrix of the real and personal properties left by her deceased father, said Atty. Ocampo, who died intestate in Angeles City on September 28, 1983. Private respondent has been estranged from her husband, Jose Cuyugan, for several years now and during which time, she and Atty. Ricardo Ocampo had illicit amorous relationship with each other that, as a consequence thereof, they begot a child who was christened Chad Cuyugan in accordance with the ardent desire and behest of said Atty. Ocampo. Chad, the son of private respondent by the late Atty. Ricardo Ocampo, who was born in Angeles City on October 5, 1980 had been sired, showered with exceptional affection, fervent love and care by his putative father for being his only son as can be gleaned from indubitable letters and documents of the late Atty. Ocampo to herein private respondent. The minor, Chad D. Cuyugan, although illegitimate is nevertheless entitled to a share in the intestate estate left by his deceased father, Atty. Ricardo Ocampo as one of the surviving heirs. The deceased Atty. Ricardo Ocampo, at the time of his death was the owner of real and personal property, located in Baguio City, Angeles City and in the Province of Pampanga with approximate value of several millions of pesos. The estate of the late Atty. Ocampo has not as yet been inventoried by the petitioner and the inheritance of the surviving heirs including that of said Chad has not likewise been ascertained. The only known surviving heirs of the deceased Atty. Ricardo Ocampo are his children, namely: Corito O. Tayag, Rivina O. Tayag, Evita O. Florendo, Felina Ocampo, and said minor Chad, for and in whose behalf this instant complaint is filed. Private respondent has no means of livelihood and she only depends on the charity of friends and relatives for the sustenance of her son, Chad, such that it is urgent, necessary and imperative that said child be extended financial support from the estate of his putative father, Atty. Ricardo Ocampo. Several demands, verbal and written, have been made for petitioner to grant Chad's lawful inheritance, but despite said demands, the latter failed and refused and still fails and refuses to satisfy the claim for inheritance against the estate of the late Atty. Ocampo. ISSUE: Whether or not Chad is entitled to inherit from Atty. Ocampos estate as his illegitimate child. HELD: Yes. Although petitioner contends that the complaint filed by herein private respondent merely alleges that the minor Chad Cuyugan is an illegitimate child of the deceased and is actually a claim for inheritance, from the allegations therein the same may be considered as one to compel recognition. Further that the two causes of action, one to compel recognition and the other to claim inheritance, may be joined in one complaint is not new in our jurisprudence. Also, the action has not yet

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prescribed. The applicable law is Article 285 of the Civil Code which states that the action for the recognition of natural children may be brought only during the lifetime of the presumed parents, except in the following cases: (1) If the father or mother died during the minority of the child, in which case the latter may file the action before the expiration of four years from the attainment of his majority. The Court holds that the right of action of the minor child has been vested by the filing of the complaint in court under the regime of the Civil Code and prior to the effectivity of the Family Code. We herein adopt our ruling in the recent case of Republic of the Philippines vs. Court of Appeals, et al. where we held that the fact of filing of the petition already vested in the petitioner her right to file it and to have the same proceed to final adjudication in accordance with the law in force at the time, and such right can no longer be prejudiced or impaired by the enactment of a new law. Renren Geremia 124) John Paul E. Fernandez, et al., vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 108366 February 16, 1994 FACTS: Violeta P. Esguerra, single, is the mother and guardian ad litem of the two petitioners, Claro Antonio Fernandez and John Paul Fernandez, met sometime in 1983, at the Meralco Compound tennis courts. A Meralco employee and a tennis enthusiast, Carlito used to spend his week-ends regularly at said courts, where Violeta's father served as tennis instructor. Violeta pointed to Carlito as the father of her two sons. She claimed that they started their illicit sexual relationship six (6) months after their first meeting. The tryst resulted in the birth of petitioner Claro Antonio on March 1, 1984, and of petitioner John Paul on not know that Carlito was married until the birth of her two children. She averred they were married in civil rites in October, 1983. In March, 1985, however, she discovered that the marriage license which they used was spurious. Petitioners presented the following documentary evidence: their certificates of live birth, identifying respondent Carlito as their father; the baptismal certificate of petitioner Claro which also states that his father is respondent Carlito; photographs of Carlito taken during the baptism of petitioner Claro; and pictures of respondent Carlito and Claro taken at the home of Violeta Esguerra. In defense, respondent Carlito denied Violeta's allegations that he sired the two petitioners. He averred he only served as one of the sponsors in the baptism of petitioner Claro. This claim was corroborated by the testimony of Rodante Pagtakhan, an officemate of respondent Carlito who also stood as a sponsor of petitioner Claro during his baptism. ISSUE: Whether or not Claro Antonio and John Paul are children of Carlito and are entitled for support. HELD: No. The rule is well-settled that findings of facts of the Court of Appeals may be reviewed by this court only under exceptional circumstances. One such situation is when the findings of the appellate court clash with those of the trial court as in the case at bench. It behooves us therefore to exercise our extraordinary power, and settle the issue of whether the ruling of the appellate court that private respondent is not the father of the petitioners is substantiated by the evidence on record. The evidence offered by the petitioners is insufficient to prove their filiation. Petitioners cannot rely on the photographs showing the presence of the private respondent in the baptism of petitioner Claro. These photographs are far from proofs that private respondent is the father of petitioner Claro. As explained by the private respondent, he was in the baptism as one of the sponsors of petitioner Claro. The pictures taken in the house of Violeta showing private respondent showering affection to Claro fall short of the evidence required to prove paternity. The baptismal certificates of petitioner Claro naming private respondent as his father has scant evidentiary value. There is no showing that private respondent participated in its preparation. The certificates of live birth of the petitioners identifying private respondent as their father are not also competent evidence on the issue of their paternity. Again, the records do no show that private respondent had a hand in the preparation of said certificates. Also, there is no proof that Father Fernandez is a close friend of Violeta Esguerra and the private respondent which should render unquestionable his identification of the private respondent during petitioner Claro's baptism. In the absence of this proof, we are not prepared to concede that Father Fernandez who officiates numerous baptismal ceremonies day in and day out can remember the parents of the children he has baptized. Renren Geremia 125) Camelo Cabatania vs. Court of Appeals

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G.R. No. 124814 October 21, 2004 FACTS: Florencias version was that she was the mother of private respondent who was born on September 9, 1982 and that she was the one supporting the child. She recounted that after her husband left her in the early part of 1981, she went to Escalante, Negros Occidental to look for work and was eventually hired as petitioners household help. It was while working there as a maid that, on January 2, 1982, petitioner brought her to Bacolod City where they checked in at the Visayan Motel and had sexual intercourse. Petitioner promised to support her if she got pregnant. Florencia claimed she discovered she was carrying petitioners child 27 days after their sexual encounter. The sexual intercourse was repeated in March 1982 in San Carlos City. Later, on suspicion that Florencia was pregnant, petitioners wife sent her home. But petitioner instead brought her to Singcang, Bacolod City where he rented a house for her. On September 9, 1982, assisted by a hilot in her aunts house in Tiglawigan, Cadiz City, she gave birth to her child, private respondent Camelo Regodos. Petitioner Camelo Cabatanias version was that he was a sugar planter and a businessman. Sometime in December, 1981, he hired Florencia as a servant at home. During the course of her employment, she would often go home to her husband in the afternoon and return to work the following morning. This displeased petitioners wife, hence she was told to look for another job. In the meantime, Florencia asked permission from petitioner to go home and spend New Years Eve in Cadiz City. Petitioner met her on board the Ceres bus bound for San Carlos City and invited her to dinner. While they were eating, she confided that she was hard up and petitioner offered to lend her save money. Later, they spent the night in San Carlos City and had sexual intercourse. While doing it, he felt something jerking and when he asked her about it, she told him she was pregnant with the child of her husband. They went home the following day. In March 1982, Florencia, then already working in another household, went to petitioners house hoping to be re-employed as a servant there. Since petitioners wife was in need of one, she was re-hired. However petitioners wife noticed that her stomach was bulging and inquired about the father of the unborn child. She told petitioners wife that the baby was by her husband. Because of her condition, she was again told to go home and they did not see each other anymore. Petitioner was therefore surprised when summons was served on him by Florencias counsel. She was demanding support for private respondent Camelo Regodos. Petitioner refused, denying the alleged paternity. He insisted she was already pregnant when they had sex. He denied going to Bacolod City with her and checking in at the Visayan Motel. He vehemently denied having sex with her on January 2, 1982 and renting a house for her in Singcang, Bacolod City. The trial court gave probative weight to the testimony of Florencia despite its discovery that she misrepresented herself as a widow when, in reality, her husband was alive. On appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the ruling of the trial court. ISSUE: Whether or not Camelo should be entitled to support as Camelo Cabatanias child. HELD: No. Clearly, this petition calls for a review of the factual findings of the two lower courts. As a general rule, factual issues are not within the province of this Court. Factual findings of the trial court, when adopted and confirmed by the Court of Appeals, become final and conclusive and may not be reviewed on appeal. However, the Court is convinced that this case falls within one of the exceptions. Time and again, this Court has ruled that a high standard of proof is required to establish paternity and filiation. An order for recognition and support may create an unwholesome situation or may be an irritant to the family or the lives of the parties so that it must be issued only if paternity or filiation is established by clear and convincing evidence. The applicable provisions of the law are Articles 172 and 175 of the Civil Code which states that: the filiation of legitimate children is established by any of the following: (1) The record of birth appearing in the civil register or a final judgment; or (2) An admission of legitimate filiation in a public document or a private handwritten instrument and signed by the parent concerned. In the absence of the foregoing evidence, the legitimate filiation shall be proved by: (1) The open and continuous possession of the status of a legitimate child; or (2) Any other means allowed by the Rules of Court and special laws; Illegitimate children may establish their illegitimate filiation in the same way and on the same evidence as legitimate children. Private respondents copy of his birth and baptismal certificates, the preparation of which was without the knowledge or consent of petitioner. A certificate of live birth purportedly identifying the putative father is not

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competent evidence of paternity when there is no showing that the putative father had a hand in the preparation of said certificate. The local civil registrar has no authority to record the paternity of an illegitimate child on the information of a third person. Also, while a baptismal certificate may be considered a public document, it can only serve as evidence of the administration of the sacrament on the date specified but not the veracity of the entries with respect to the childs paternity. Thus, certificates issued by the local civil registrar and baptismal certificates are per se inadmissible in evidence as proof of filiation and they cannot be admitted indirectly as circumstantial evidence to prove the same. Private respondent failed to present sufficient proof of voluntary recognition. On the other hand, the fact that Florencias husband is living and there is a valid subsisting marriage between them gives rise to the presumption that a child born within that marriage is legitimate even though the mother may have declared against its legitimacy or may have been sentenced as an adulteress. The presumption of legitimacy does not only flow out of a declaration in the statute but is based on the broad principles of natural justice and the supposed virtue of the mother. The presumption is grounded on the policy to protect innocent offspring from the odium of illegitimacy. In this age of genetic profiling and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) analysis, the extremely subjective test of physical resemblance or similarity of features will not suffice as evidence to prove paternity and filiation before the courts of law. Renren Geremia 126) SAYSON VS. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. Nos. 89224-25, January 23, 1992 Cruz, J.: FACTS: Eleno and Rafaela Sayson begot five children namely, Mauricio, Rosario, Basilisa, Remedios and Teodoro. Eleno died in 1952 and Rafaela in 1976. One of their children, Teodoro married to Isabel died on 1972. The wife of Teodoro, Isabel then after died in 1981. The properties of the couple Teodoro and Isabel were left with private respondents Delia, Edmundo and Doribel, who were their children. On April 25, 1983, Maurico, Rosario, Basilisa, Remedios and Juana (mother of Isabel) filed for partition of the estate of Teodoro and Isabel, which was opposed by Delia, Edmundo and Doribel, who claimed successional rights to the estate. Likewise, Delia, Edmundo and Doribel filed their own complaint for the partition of Eleno and Rafaelas estate through representation. Both cases were decided in favor of the private respondents. Judge Rafael declared that Delia and Edmundo were the legally adopted children of Teodoro and Isabel Sayson by virtue of the decree of adoption. Doribel was their legitimate daughter as evidenced by her birth certificate. Consequently, the three children were entitled to inherit from Eleno and Rafaela by right of representation. On the other case, Judge Saez held that being the legitimate heirs of Teodoro and Isabel as established by the aforementioned evidence, the same excluded the plaintiffs from sharing in their estate. The Court of Appeals modified the decision in that Delia and Edmundo Sayson are disqualified from inheriting from the estate of the deceased spouses Eleno and Rafaela Sayson, but affirmed all other respects. Hence, this petition for review by certiorari. ISSUE: Whether or not the private respondents are entitled to inherit from their parents and their grandparents. HELD: A challenge to the validity of the adoption cannot be made collaterally in an action for partition but in a direct proceeding frontally addressing the issue. On the question of Doribel's legitimacy, the findings of the trial courts as affirmed by the respondent court must be sustained. Doribel's birth certificate is a formidable piece of evidence. It is one of the prescribed means of recognition under Article 265 of the Civil Code and Article 172 of the Family Code. It is true, as the petitioners stress, that the birth certificate offers only prima facie evidence of filiation and may be refuted by contrary evidence. However, such evidence is lacking in the case at bar. Doribel, as the legitimate daughter of Teodoro and Isabel Sayson, and Delia and Edmundo, as their adopted children, are the exclusive heirs to the intestate estate of the deceased couple, conformably to the following Article 979 of the Civil Code:

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Art. 979. Legitimate children and their descendants succeed the parents and other ascendants, without distinction as to sex or age, and even if they should come from different marriages. An adopted child succeeds to the property of the adopting parents in the same manner as a legitimate child. The philosophy underlying this article is that a person's love descends first to his children and grandchildren before it ascends to his parents and thereafter spreads among his collateral relatives. It is also supposed that one of his purposes in acquiring properties is to leave them eventually to his children as a token of his love for them and as a provision for their continued care even after he is gone from this earth. There is no question that as the legitimate daughter of Teodoro and thus the granddaughter of Eleno and Rafaela, Doribel has a right to represent her deceased father in the distribution of the intestate estate of her grandparents. Under Article 981, quoted above, she is entitled to the share her father would have directly inherited had he survived, which shall be equal to the shares of her grandparents' other children. But a different conclusion must be reached in the case of Delia and Edmundo, to whom the grandparents were total strangers. While it is true that the adopted child shall be deemed to be a legitimate child and have the same right as the latter, these rights do not include the right of representation. The relationship created by the adoption is between only the adopting parents and the adopted child and does not extend to the blood relatives of either party. 127) LIYAO vs. TANHOTI-LIYAO 378 SCRA 563 FACTS: This is a petition for compulsory recognition of William Liyao Jr. as the illegitimate (spurious) child of the late Willima Liyao against Juanita Tanhoti-Liyao, Pearl Margaret L. Tan, Tita Rose L. Tan and Linda Christina Liyao (children and wife of William). According to Corazon G. Garcia, William Liyao Jr.s mother and representative, she was married to but living separately from Ramon M. Yulo for more than ten (10) years and cohabited with late William Liyao from 1965 to the time of Williams untimely demise on December 2, 1975. They lived together with the knowledge of William Liyaos legitimate children, Tita Rose L. Tan and Linda Christina Liyao-Ortiga, who were both employed at the Far East Realty Investment, Inc. of which Corazon and William were the vice president and president, respectively. On June 9, 1975, Corazon gave birth to William Liyao Jr. (Billy). Since then, he had been in continuous possession and enjoyment of the status of a recognized and/or acknowledged child of William Liyao by the latters direct and overt acts which among others, the payment of medical and hospital expenses, food and clothing and bringing him to vacations and various social gatherings as evidenced by the pictures taken on the said occasions. On the other hand, according to Linda Christina Liyao-Ortiga, her parents, William Liyao and Juanita Tanhoti-Liyao, were legally married. She grew up and lived with her parents at San Lorenzo Village , Makati until she got married. Her parents were not separated legally or in fact and that there was no reason why any of her parents would institute legal separation proceedings in court. Her father came home regularly even during out of town to change cloths until he suffered from two strokes before the fatal attack which led to his death on December 2, 1975. She further testified that she knew Corazon Garcia is still married to Ramon Yulo and was not legally separated from her husband and the records from Local Civil Registrar do not indicate that the couple obtained any annulment of their marriage. Tita Rose Liyao-Tan testimony was similar to Ms. Linda that their parents were legally married and had never been separated. They resided at San Lorenzo Village until the time of their fathers death. The trial court rendered judgment in favor of the William, Jr. and Corazon. However, the Court of Appeals reversed the ruling of the trial court and ruled in favor of Juanita, Pearl and Linda. Issue: Whether or not William, Jr. is entitled to inherit. Held: The Court sustained the decision of the Court of Appeals stating that the fact that Corazon had been living separately from Ramon at the time petitioner was conceived and born has no bearing to the legitimacy of the child. While the physical impossibility for the husband to have sexual intercourse with his wife is one of the grounds in impugning the legitimacy of the child, it bears emphasis that the grounds for impugning the

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legitimacy of the child mentioned in Art. 255 of the Civil Code may only be invoked by the husband or in proper cases, his heirs under the conditions set forth under Art. 262 of the Civil Code. It is therefore clear that the present petition initiated by petitioner, to compel recognition by respondents of petitioner William Liyao Jr., as the illegitimate son of late William Liyao cannot prosper. It is settled that a child born within a valid marriage is presumed legitimate even though the mother may have declared against its legitimacy or may have been sentenced as an adulteress. The Court cannot allow petitioner to maintain his present petition and subvert the clear mandate of the law that only the husband, or in exceptional cases, his heirs could impugn the legitimacy of a child born in a valid and subsisting marriage. The child himself cannot choose his own filiation. If the husband presumed to be the father does not impugn the legitimacy of the child, then the status of the child is fixed, and the latter cannot choose to be the child of his mothers alleged paramour. 128) DE JESUS vs. ESTATE OF DIZON 366 SCRA 499 Vitug, J.: FACTS: Danilo B. de Jesus and Carolina Aves de Jesus got married on 23 August 1964. It was during this marriage that Jacqueline A. de Jesus and Jinkie Christie A. de Jesus, herein petitioners, were born. In a notarized document, dated 07 June 1991, Juan G. Dizon acknowledged Jacqueline and Jinkie de Jesus as being his own illegitimate children by Carolina Aves de Jesus. Juan G. Dizon died intestate on 12 March 1992, leaving behind considerable assets consisting of shares of stock in various corporations and some real property. It was on the strength of his notarized acknowledgement that petitioners filed a complaint for "Partition with Inventory and Accounting" of the Dizon estate with the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. Respondents, the surviving spouse and legitimate children of the decedent Juan G. Dizon, including the corporations of which the deceased was a stockholder, sought the dismissal of the case, arguing that the complaint, even while denominated as being one for partition, would nevertheless call for altering the status of petitioners from being the legitimate children of the spouses Danilo de Jesus and Carolina de Jesus to instead be the illegitimate children of Carolina de Jesus and deceased Juan Dizon. The trial court denied, due to lack of merit. However. the appellate court upheld the decision of the lower court and ordered the case to be remanded to the trial court for further proceedings. The Trial Court decreed that the declaration of heirship could only be made in a special proceeding inasmuch as petitioners were seeking the establishment of a status or right. In the instant petition for review on certiorari, the petitioners maintain that their recognition as being illegitimate children of the decedent, embodied in an authentic writing, is in itself sufficient to establish their status as such and does not require a separate action for judicial approval. ISSUE: Whether an action for partition is proper to ascertain the question of paternity & filiation or whether it should be taken in an independent suit. HELD: The filiation of illegitimate children, like legitimate children, is established by (1) the record of birth appearing the civil register or a final judgement; or (2) an admission of legitimate filiation in a public document or a private handwritten and signed by the parent concerned. In the absence thereof, filiation shall be proved by (1) the open and continuos possession of the status of a legitimate child; or (2) any other means allowed by the Rules of Court and special laws. The due recognition of an illegitimate child in a record of birth, a will, a statement before a court or record, or in any authentic writing is, in itself, a consummated act of acknowledgement of the child, and no further court action is required. In fact, any writing is treated not just a ground for compulsory recognition; it is in itself voluntary recognition that does not require a separate action for judicial approval. Where, instead, a claim for recognition is predicted on other evidence merely tending to prove paternity, i.e., outside of a record of birth, a will, a statement before a court or record or an authentic writing, judicial action within the applicable statue of limitations is essential in order to establish the child's acknowledgement. Succinctly, in an attempt to establish their illegitimate filiation to the late Juan G. Dizon, petitioners, in effect, would impugn their legitimate status as being children of Danilo de Jesus and Carolina Aves de Jesus. This step cannot be aptly done because the law itself establishes the legitimacy of children conceived or born during the marriage of the parents. The presumption of

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legitimacy fixes a civil status for the child born in wedlock, and only the father, or in exceptional instances the latter's heirs, can contest in an appropriate action the legitimacy of a child born to his wife. Thus, it is only when the legitimacy of a child has been successfully impugned that the paternity of the husband can be rejected. The rule that the written acknowledgement made by the deceased Juan G. Dizon establishes petitioners' alleged illegitimate filiation to the decedent cannot be validly invoked to be of any relevance in this instance. This issue, i.e whether petitioners are indeed the acknowledge illegitimate offsprings of the decedent, cannot be aptly adjudicated without an action having been first instituted to impugn their legitimacy as being the children of Danilo B. de Jesus and Carolina Aves de Jesus born in lawful wedlock. Jurisprudence is strongly settled that the paramount declaration of legitimacy by law cannot be attacked collaterally, one that can only be repudiated or contested in a direct suit specifically brought for that purpose. Indeed, a child so born in such wedlock shall be considered legitimate although the mother may have declared against its legitimacy or may have been sentenced as having been an adulteress. 129) LABAGALA vs. SANTIAGO G.R. No. 132305; December 4, 2001 Quisumbing, J.: FACTS: Jose T. Santiago owned a parcel of land located in Sta. Cruz, Manila . Alleging that Jose had fraudulently registered it in his name alone, his sisters Nicolasa and Amanda (now respondents herein) sued Jose for recovery of 2/3 share of the property. The trial court in that case decided in favor of the sisters, recognizing their right of ownership over portions of the property. The Register of Deeds of Manila was required to include the names of Nicolasa and Amanda in the certificate of title to said property. Jose died intestate. The respondents filed a complaint for recovery of title, ownership, and possession against herein petitioner, Ida C. Labagala, before the Regional Trial Court of Manila, to recover from her the 1/3 portion of said property pertaining to Jose but which came into petitioner's sole possession upon Jose's death. Respondents alleged that Jose's share in the property belongs to them by operation of law, because they are the only legal heirs of their brother, who died intestate and without issue. They claimed that the purported sale of the property made by their brother to petitioner sometime in March 1979 was executed through petitioner's machinations and with malicious intent, to enable her to secure the corresponding transfer certificate of title (TCT No. 172334) in petitioner's name alone. Respondents insisted that the deed of sale was a forgery .The deed showed that Jose affixed his thumbmark thereon but respondents averred that, having been able to graduate from college, Jose never put his thumb mark on documents he executed but always signed his name in full. On the other hand, petitioner claimed that her true name is not Ida C. Labagala as claimed by respondent but Ida C. Santiago. She claimed not to know any person by the name of Ida C. Labagala. She claimed to be the daughter of Jose and thus entitled to his share in the subject property. She maintained that she had always stayed on the property, ever since she was a child. She argued that the purported sale of the property was in fact a donation to her, and that nothing could have precluded Jose from putting his thumbmark on the deed of sale instead of his signature. She pointed out that during his lifetime, Jose never acknowledged respondents' claim over the property such that respondents had to sue to claim portions thereof. She lamented that respondents had to disclaim her in their desire to obtain ownership of the whole property. Trial court ruled in favor of petitioner which was reversed by the Court of Appeals. ISSUES: (1) whether or not respondents may impugn petitioner's filiation in this action for recovery of title and possession; and (2) whether or not petitioner is entitled to Jose's 1/3 portion of the property he co-owned with respondents, through succession, sale, or donation. HELD: Petitioner's reliance on Article 263 of the Civil Code is misplaced. This article should be read in conjunction with the other articles in the same chapter on paternity and filiation in the Civil Code. A careful reading of said chapter would reveal that it contemplates situations where a doubt exists that a child is indeed a man's child by his wife, and the husband (or, in proper cases, his heirs) denies the child's filiation. It does not refer to situations where a child is alleged not to be the child at all of a particular couple.

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Article 263 refers to an action to impugn the legitimacy of a child, to assert and prove that a person is not a man's child by his wife. However, the present case is not one impugning petitioner's legitimacy. Respondents are asserting not merely that petitioner is not a legitimate child of Jose, but that she is not a child of Jose at all. Moreover, the present action is one for recovery of title and possession, and thus outside the scope of Article 263 on prescriptive periods. Petitioner's reliance on Sayson is likewise improper. The factual milieu present in Sayson does not obtain in the instant case. What was being challenged by petitioners in Sayson was (1) the validity of the adoption of Delia and Edmundo by the deceased Teodoro and Isabel Sayson, and (2) the legitimate status of Doribel Sayson. While asserting that Delia and Edmundo could not have been validly adopted since Doribel had already been born to the Sayson couple at the time, petitioners at the same time made the conflicting claim that Doribel was not the child of the couple. The Court ruled in that case that it was too late to question the decree of adoption that became final years before. Besides, such a challenge to the validity of the adoption cannot be made collaterally but in a direct proceeding. Petitioner, who claims to be Ida Santiago, has the same birthdate as Ida Labagala. The similarity is too uncanny to be a mere coincidence. During her testimony before the trial court, petitioner denied knowing Cornelia Cabrigas, who was listed as the mother in the birth certificate of Ida Labagala. In her petition before this Court, however, she stated that Cornelia is the sister of her mother, Esperanza. It appears that petitioner made conflicting statements that affect her credibility and could cast along shadow of doubt on her claims of filiation. Thus, we are constrained to agree with the factual finding of the Court of Appeals that petitioner is in reality the child of Leon Labagala and Cornelia Cabrigas, and contrary to her averment, not of Jose Santiago and Esperanza Cabrigas. Not being a child of Jose, it follows that petitioner can not inherit from him through intestate succession. It now remains to be seen whether the property in dispute was validly transferred to petitioner through sale or donation. Jose did not have the right to transfer ownership of the entire property to petitioner since 2/3 thereof belonged to his sisters. Petitioner could not have given her consent to the contract, being a minor at the time. Consent of the contracting parties is among the essential requisites of a contract, including one of sale, absent which there can be no valid contract. Moreover, petitioner admittedly did not pay any centavo for the property, which makes the sale void. Article 1471 of the Civil Code provides: Art. 1471. If the price is simulated, the sale is void, but the act may be shown to have been in reality a donation, or some other act or contract. Neither may the purported deed of sale be a valid deed of donation. 130) ESTATE OF LOCSIN vs. JUAN C. LOCSIN G.R. No. 146737, December 10, 2001 Sandoval-Gutierrez, J.: FACTS: Eleven months after Juan "Jhonny" Locsin, Sr. died intestate on December 11, 1990, respondent Juan E. Locsin, Jr. filed with the Regional Trial Court of Iloilo City , a "Petition for Letters of Administration" praying that he be appointed Administrator of the Intestate Estate of the deceased. He alleged that he is an acknowledged natural child. The trial court issued an order setting the petition for hearing which order was duly published, thereby giving notice to all persons who may have opposition to the said petition. Before the scheduled hearing, the heirs of Jose Locsin, Jr., the heirs of Maria Locsin, Manuel Locsin and Ester Jarantilla, claiming to be the lawful heirs of the deceased, filed an opposition. They averred that respondent is not a child or an acknowledged natural child of the late Juan C. Locsin, who during his lifetime, never affixed "Sr." in his name. On January 5, 1993, another opposition to the petition was filed by Lucy Salinop (sole heir of the late Maria Locsin Vda. De Araneta, sister of the deceased), Manuel Locsin and the successors of the late Lourdes C. Locsin alleging that respondent's claim as a natural child is barred by prescription or the statute of limitations. The Intestate Estate of the late Jose Locsin, Jr. (brother of the deceased) also entered its appearance in the estate proceedings, joining the earlier oppositors. This was followed by an appearance and opposition of Ester Locsin Jarantilla (another sister of Juan C. Locsin), likewise stating that there is no filial relationship between herein respondent and the deceased. To support his claim that he is an acknowledged natural child of the deceased, respondent submitted a machine copy of his Certificate of Live Birth found in the bound volume of birth records in the Office of the Local Clerk Registrar of Iloilo City which contains the information

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that respondent's father is Juan C. Locsin, Sr. and that he was the informant of the facts stated therein, as evidenced by his signatures. To prove the existence and authenticity of Certificate of Live Birth, respondent presented the Local Civil Registrar of Iloilo City. Respondent also offered in evidence a photograph showing him and his mother, Amparo Escamilla, in front of a coffin bearing Juan C. Locsin's dead body. The photograph, respondent claims, shows that he and his mother have been recognized as family members of the deceased. Petitioners claimed that Certificate of Live Birth is spurious. They submitted a certified true copy of Certificate of Live Birth found in the Civil Registrar General, Metro Manila indicating that the birth of respondent was reported by his mother, Amparo Escamilla, and that the same does not contain the signature of the late Juan C. Locsin. They observed as anomalous the fact that while respondent was born on October 22, 1956 and his birth was recorded on January 30, 1957, however, his Certificate of Live Birth was recorded on a December 1, 1958 revised form. The trial court found that the Certificate of Live Birth and the photograph are sufficient proofs of respondent's illegitimate filiation. The Court of Appeals affirmed in toto the order of the trial court. Petitioners moved for reconsideration, while respondent filed a motion for execution pending appeal. Both motions were denied by the Appellate Court. ISSUE: Which of the two documents Certificate of Live Birth No. 477 (Exhibit "D") and Certificate of Live Birth No. 477 (Exhibit "8") is genuine. HELD: Exhibit 8 for the petitioners. With respect to Local Civil Registries, access thereto by interested parties is obviously easier. Thus, in proving the authenticity of Exhibit "D," more convincing evidence than those considered by the trial court should have been presented by respondent. The event about which she testified on March 7, 1994 was the record of respondent's birth which took place on October 22, 1956, on 37 or 38 years ago. The Local Civil Registrar of Iloilo City at that time was Emilio G. Tomesa. Necessarily, Vencer's knowledge of respondent's birth record allegedly made and entered in the Local Civil Registry in January, 1957 was based merely on her general impressions of the existing records in that Office. When entries in the Certificate of Live Birth recorded in the Local Civil Registry vary from those appearing in the copy transmitted to the Civil Registry General, pursuant to the Civil Registry Law, the variance has to be clarified in more persuasive and rational manner. In this regard, we find Vencer's explanation not convincing. Respondent's Certificate of Live Birth No. 477 (Exhibit "D") was recorded in a December 1, 1958 revised form. Asked how a 1958 form could be used in 1957 when respondent's birth was recorded, Vencer answered that "x x x during that time, maybe the forms in 1956 were already exhausted so the former Civil Registrar had requested for a new form and they sent us the 1958 Revised Form." The answer is a "maybe", a mere supposition of an event. It does not satisfactorily explain how a Revised Form dated December 1, 1958 could have been used on January 30, 1957 or almost (2) years earlier. Upon the other hand, Exhibit "8" of the petitioners found in the Civil Registrar General in Metro Manila is on Municipal Form No 102, revised in July, 1956. We find no irregularity here. Indeed, it is logical to assume that the 1956 forms would continue to be used several years thereafter. But for a 1958 form to be used in 1957 is unlikely. There are other indications of irregularity relative to Exhibit "D." The back cover of the 1957 bound volume in the Local Civil Registry of Iloilo is torn. Exhibit "D" is merely pasted with the bound volume, not sewn like the other entries. The documents bound into one volume are original copies. Exhibit "D" is a carbon copy of the alleged original and sticks out like a sore thumb because the entries therein are typewritten, while the records of all other certificates are handwritten. Unlike the contents of those other certificates, Exhibit "D" does not indicate important particulars, such as the alleged father's religion, race, occupation, address and business. The space which calls for an entry of the legitimacy of the child is blank. On the back page of Exhibit "D", there is a purported signature of the alleged father, but the blanks calling for the date and other details of his Residence Certificate were not filled up.

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When asked to explain the torn back cover of the bound volume, Vencer had no answer except to state, "I am not aware of this because I am not a bookbinder." The records of the instant case adequately support a finding that Exhibit "8" for the petitioners, not respondent's Exhibit "D", should have been given more faith and credence by the courts below. In this connection, we echo this Court's pronouncement in Roces vs. Local Civil Registrar that: "Section 5 of Act No. 3753 and Article 280 of the Civil Code of the Philippines . . . explicitly prohibit, not only the naming of the father of the child born out of wedlock, when the birth certificate, or the recognition, is not filed or made by him , but also, the statement of any information or circumstances by which he could be identified. Accordingly, the Local Civil Registrar had no authority to make or record the paternity of an illegitimate child upon the information of a third person and the certificate of birth of an illegitimate child, when signed only by the mother of the latter, is incompetent evidence of fathership of said child." The Roces ruling regarding illegitimate filiation is further elucidated in Fernandez vs. Court of Appeals where this Court said that "a birth certificate not signed by the alleged father (who had no hand in its preparation) is not competent evidence of paternity." A birth certificate is a formidable piece of evidence prescribed by both the Civil Code and Article 172 of the Family Code for purposes of recognition and filiation. However, birth certificate offers only prima facie evidence of filiation and may be refuted by contrary evidence. Its evidentiary worth cannot be sustained where there exists strong, complete and conclusive proof of its falsity or nullity. In this case, respondent's Certificate of Live Birth No. 477 entered in the records of the Local Civil Registry (from which Exhibit "D" was machine copied) has all the badges of nullity. Without doubt, the authentic copy on file in that office was removed and substituted with a falsified Certificate of Live Birth. 131) EDGARDO TIJING & BIENVENIDA TIJING vs. COURT OF APPEALS (G.R. No. 125901; March 8, 2001) Quisumbing, J.: FACTS: Petitioners are husband and wife. They have six children. The youngest is Edgardo Tijing, Jr., who was born on April 27, 1989, at the clinic of midwife and registered nurse Lourdes Vasquez in Sta. Ana, Manila . Petitioner Bienvenida served as the laundrywoman of private respondent Angelita Diamante, then a resident of Tondo, Manila . According to Bienvenida in August 1989, Angelita went to her house to fetch her for an urgent laundry job. Since Bienvenida was on her way to do some marketing, she asked Angelita to wait until she returned. She also left her four-month old son, Edgardo, Jr., under the care of Angelita as she usually let Angelita take care of the child while Bienvenida was doing laundry. Upon her return, Angelita and Edgardo, Jr., were gone. Bienvenida forthwith proceeded to Angelita's house in Tondo, Manila , but did not find them there. Angelita's maid told Bienvenida that her employer went out for a stroll and told Bienvenida to come back later. She returned to Angelita's house after three days, only to discover that Angelita had moved to another place. Bienvenida then complained to her barangay chairman and also to the police who seemed unmoved by her pleas for assistance. Four years later or in October 1993, Bienvenida read in a tabloid about the death of Tomas Lopez, allegedly the common-law husband of Angelita, and whose remains were lying in state in Hagonoy, Bulacan. Bienvenida lost no time in going to Hagonoy, Bulacan, where she allegedly saw her son Edgardo, Jr., for the first time after four years. She claims that the boy, who was pointed out to her by Benjamin Lopez, a brother of the late Tomas Lopez, was already named John Thomas Lopez. She avers that Angelita refused to return to her the boy despite her demand to do so. Bienvenida and Edgardo filed their petition for habeas corpus with the trial court in order to recover their son. Petitioners presented two witnesses. The 1st, witness is Vasquez who testified that she assisted in the delivery of one Edgardo Tijing, Jr. on April 27, 1989 at her clinic. The 2nd, Benjamin Lopez who declared that his brother admitted to him that John Thomas Lopez was only an adopted son and that he and Angelita were not blessed with children. For her part, Angelita claimed that she is the natural mother of the child. She asserts that at age 42, she gave birth to John Thomas Lopez on April 27, 1989, at the clinic of midwife Zosima Panganiban in Singalong, Manila . She added, though, that she

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has two other children with her real husband, Angel Sanchez. She said the birth of John Thomas was registered by her common-law husband, Tomas Lopez, with the local civil registrar of Manila on August 4, 1989. On March 10, 1995, the trial court concluded that since Angelita and her common-law husband could not have children, the alleged birth of John Thomas Lopez is an impossibility. The trial court also held that the minor and Bienvenida showed strong facial similarity. Accordingly, it ruled that Edgardo Tijing, Jr., and John Thomas Lopez are one and the same person who is the natural child of petitioners. The sheriff implemented the order of the trial court by taking custody of the minor. In his report, the sheriff stated that Angelita peacefully surrendered the minor and he turned over the custody of said child to petitioner Edgardo Tijing. The Court of Appeals reversed and expressed its doubts on the propriety of the habeas corpus. In its view, the evidence adduced by Bienvenida was not sufficient to establish that she was the mother of the minor. It ruled that the lower court erred in declaring that Edgardo Tijing, Jr., and John Thomas Lopez are one and the same person. ISSUES: (1) Whether or not habeas corpus is the proper remedy? (2) Whether or not Edgardo Tijing, Jr., and John Thomas Lopez are one and the same person and is the son of petitioners? HELD: The writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention by which any person is deprived of his liberty, or by which the rightful custody of any person is withheld from the person entitled thereto. Thus, it is the proper legal remedy to enable parents to regain the custody of a minor child even if the latter be in the custody of a third person of his own free will. It may even be said that in custody cases involving minors, the question of illegal and involuntary restraint of liberty is not the underlying rationale for the availability of the writ as a remedy. Rather, it is prosecuted for the purpose of determining the right of custody over a child. It must be stressed too that in habeas corpusproceedings, the question of identity is relevant and material, subject to the usual presumptions including those as to identity of the person. A close scrutiny of the records of this case reveals that the evidence presented by Bienvenida is sufficient to establish that John Thomas Lopez is actually her missing son, Edgardo Tijing, Jr. First, there is evidence that Angelita could no longer bear children. From her very lips, she admitted that after the birth of her second child, she underwent ligation at the Martinez Hospital in 1970, before she lived with Tomas Lopez without the benefit of marriage in 1974. Second, there is strong evidence which directly proves that Tomas Lopez is no longer capable of siring a son. Benjamin Lopez declared in court that his brother, Tomas, was sterile because of the accident and that Tomas admitted to him that John Thomas Lopez was only an adopted son. Moreover, Tomas Lopez and his legal wife, Maria Rapatan Lopez, had no children after almost fifteen years together. Though Tomas Lopez had lived with private respondent for fourteen years, they also bore no offspring. Third, we find unusual the fact that the birth certificate of John Thomas Lopez was filed by Tomas Lopez instead of the midwife. Under the law, the attending physician or midwife in attendance at birth should cause the registration of such birth. Only in default of the physician or midwife, can the parent register the birth of his child. Fourth, the trial court observed several times that when the child and Bienvenida were both in court, the two had strong similarities in their faces, eyes, eyebrows and head shapes. Resemblance between a minor and his alleged parent is competent and material evidence to establish parentage. Needless to stress, the trial court's conclusion should be given high respect, it having had the opportunity to observe the physical appearances of the minor and petitioner concerned. Fifth, Lourdes Vasquez testified that she assisted in Bienvenida's giving birth to Edgardo Tijing, Jr., at her clinic. Unlike private respondent, she presented clinical records consisting of a log book, discharge order and the signatures of petitioners. All these considered, we are constrained to rule that subject minor is indeed the son of petitioners. The writ of habeas corpus is proper to regain custody of said child. 132) AGUSTIN vs. COURT OF APPEALS AND PROLLAMANTE G.R. No. 162571. June 15, 2005 Corona, J.: FACTS: Respondents Fe Angela and her son Martin Prollamante sued Martins alleged biological father, petitioner Arnel L. Agustin, for support and support pendente lite before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Quezon City . In their complaint,

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respondents alleged that Arnel courted Fe in 1992, after which they entered into an intimate relationship. Arnel supposedly impregnated Fe on her 34th birthday on November 10, 1999. Despite Arnels insistence on abortion, Fe decided otherwise and gave birth to their child out of wedlock, Martin, on August 11, 2000 at the Capitol Medical Hospital in Quezon City . The babys birth certificate was purportedly signed by Arnel as the father. Arnel shouldered the pre-natal and hospital expenses but later refused Fes repeated requests for Martins support despite his adequate financial capacity and even suggested to have the child committed for adoption. Arnel also denied having fathered the child. Arnel denied having sired Martin because his affair and intimacy with Fe had allegedly ended in 1998, long before Martins conception. He claimed that Fe had at least one other secret lover. Arnel admitted that their relationship started in 1993 but "he never really fell in love with (Fe) not only because (she) had at least one secret lover, a certain Jun, but also because she proved to be scheming and overly demanding and possessive. Unable to bear the prospect of losing his wife and children, Arnel terminated the affair although he still treated her as a friend such as by referring potential customers to the car aircon repair shop" where she worked. Later on, Arnel found out that Fe had another erstwhile secret lover. In May 2000, Arnel and his entire family went to the United States for a vacation. Upon their return in June 2000, Arnel learned that Fe was telling people that he had impregnated her. Arnel refused to acknowledge the child as his because their "last intimacy was sometime in 1998." Exasperated, Fe started calling Arnels wife and family. On January 19, 2001, Fe followed Arnel to the Capitol Hills Golf and Country Club parking lot to demand that he acknowledge Martin as his child. According to Arnel, he could not get through Fe and the discussion became so heated that he had no "alternative but to move on but without bumping or hitting any part of her body." Finally, Arnel claimed that the signature and the community tax certificate (CTC) attributed to him in the acknowledgment of Martins birth certificate were falsified. The CTC erroneously reflected his marital status as single when he was actually married and that his birth year was 1965 when it should have been 1964. Fe and Martin moved for the issuance of an order directing all the parties to submit themselves to DNA paternity testing pursuant to Rule 28 of the Rules of Court. Arnel opposed said motion by invoking his constitutional right against selfincrimination. He also moved to dismiss the complaint for lack of cause of action, considering that his signature on the birth certificate was a forgery and that, under the law, an illegitimate child is not entitled to support if not recognized by the putative father. He attached the certification of the Philippine National Police Crime Laboratory that his signature in the birth certificate was forged. The trial court denied the motion to dismiss the complaint and ordered the parties to submit themselves to DNA paternity testing at the expense of the applicants. The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court. ISSUES: (1) whether a complaint for support can be converted to a petition for recognition and (2) whether DNA paternity testing can be ordered in a proceeding for support without violating petitioners constitutional right to privacy and right against selfincrimination. HELD: The assailed resolution and order did not convert the action for support into one for recognition but merely allowed the respondents to prove their cause of action against petitioner who had been denying the authenticity of the documentary evidence of acknowledgement. But even if the assailed resolution and order effectively integrated an action to compel recognition with an action for support, such was valid and in accordance with jurisprudence. In Tayag v. Court of Appeals,20 we allowed the integration of an action to compel recognition with an action to claim ones inheritance: In Paulino, we held that an illegitimate child, to be entitled to support and successional rights from the putative or presumed parent, must prove his filiation to the latter. We also said that it is necessary to allege in the complaint that the putative father had acknowledged and recognized the illegitimate child because such acknowledgment is essential to and is the basis of the right to inherit. There being no allegation of such acknowledgment, the action becomes one to compel recognition which cannot be brought after the death of the putative father. The ratio decidendi in Paulino, therefore, is not the absence of a cause of action for failure of the petitioner to allege the fact of acknowledgment in the complaint, but the prescription of the action. Applying the foregoing principles to the case at bar, although petitioner contends that the complaint filed by herein private respondent merely alleges that the minor Chad Cuyugan is an

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illegitimate child of the deceased and is actually a claim for inheritance, from the allegations therein the same may be considered as one to compel recognition. Further, that the two causes of action, one to compel recognition and the other to claim inheritance, may be joined in one complaint is not new in our jurisprudence. Although the instant case deals with support rather than inheritance, as in Tayag, the basis or rationale for integrating them remains the same. Whether or not respondent Martin is entitled to support depends completely on the determination of filiation. A separate action will only result in a multiplicity of suits, given how intimately related the main issues in both cases are. To paraphrase Tayag, the declaration of filiation is entirely appropriate to these proceedings. On the second issue, petitioner posits that DNA is not recognized by this Court as a conclusive means of proving paternity. He also contends that compulsory testing violates his right to privacy and right against self-incrimination as guaranteed under the 1987 Constitution. These contentions have no merit. The kernel of the right is not against all compulsion, but against testimonial compulsion. The right against self-incrimination is simply against the legal process of extracting from the lips of the accused an admission of guilt. It does not apply where the evidence sought to be excluded is not an incrimination but as part of object evidence. Over the years, we have expressly excluded several kinds of object evidence taken from the person of the accused from the realm of selfincrimination. These include photographs,28 hair,29 and other bodily substances.30We have also declared as constitutional several procedures performed on the accused such as pregnancy tests for women accused of adultery,31 expulsion of morphine from ones mouth32 and the tracing of ones foot to determine its identity with bloody footprints.33 In Jimenez v. Caizares,34 we even authorized the examination of a womans genitalia, in an action for annulment filed by her husband, to verify his claim that she was impotent, her orifice being too small for his penis. Some of these procedures were, to be sure, rather invasive and involuntary, but all of them were constitutionally sound. DNA testing and its results, per our ruling in Yatar,35 are now similarly acceptable. In no uncertain terms, we also underscore that the right to privacy does not bar all incursions into individual privacy. The right is not intended to stifle scientific and technological advancements that enhance public service and the common good... Intrusions into the right must be accompanied by proper safeguards that enhance public service and the common good. 133) In re: Petition for Change of Name of Julian Lim G.R. No. 159966 March 30, 2005 Facts: On 22 September 2002, petitioner Julian Lin Carulasan Wang, a minor, represented by his mother Anna Lisa Wang, filed a petition for change of name and/or cancellation of entry in the Civil Registry of Julian Lin Carulasan Wang. Petitioner sought to drop his middle name and have his registered name changed from Julian Lin Carulasan Wang to Julian Lin Wang. The parents of Julian Lin Carulasan Wang plan to stay in Singapore for a long time because they will let him study there together with his sister named Wang Mei Jasmine who was born in Singapore. Since in Singapore middle names or the maiden surname of the mother are not carried in a persons name, they anticipate that Julian Lin Carulasan Wang will be discriminated against because of his current registered name which carries a middle name. Julian and his sister might also be asking whether they are brother and sister since they have different surnames. Carulasan sounds funny in Singapores Mandarin language since they do not have the letter R but if there is, they pronounce it as L. It is for these reasons that the name of Julian Lin Carulasan Wang is requested to be changed to Julian Lin Wang. The RTC rendered a decision denying the petition. The trial court found that the reason given for the change of name sought in the petitionthat is, that petitioner Julian may be discriminated against when studies in Singapore because of his middle name did not fall within the grounds recognized by law. The trial court ruled that the change sought is merely for the convenience of the child. Since the State has an interest in the name of a person, names cannot be changed to suit the convenience of the bearers. Under Article 174 of the Family Code, legitimate children have the right to bear the surnames of the father and the mother, and there is no reason why

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this right should now be taken from petitioner Julian, considering that he is still a minor. The trial court added that when petitioner Julian reaches the age of majority, he could then decide whether he will change his name by dropping his middle name. Issue: Whether or not dropping the middle name of a minor child is contrary to Article 174 of the Family Code Held: The touchstone for the grant of a change of name is that there be proper and reasonable cause for which the change is sought. To justify a request for change of name, petitioner must show not only some proper or compelling reason therefore but also that he will be prejudiced by the use of his true and official name. Among the grounds for change of name which have been held valid are: (a) when the name is ridiculous, dishonorable or extremely difficult to write or pronounce; (b) when the change results as a legal consequence, as in legitimation; (c) when the change will avoid confusion; (d) when one has continuously used and been known since childhood by a Filipino name, and was unaware of alien parentage; (e) a sincere desire to adopt a Filipino name to erase signs of former alienage, all in good faith and without prejudicing anybody; and (f) when the surname causes embarrassment and there is no showing that the desired change of name was for a fraudulent purpose or that the change of name would prejudice public interest. In the case at bar, the only reason advanced by petitioner for the dropping his middle name is convenience. However, how such change of name would make his integration into Singaporean society easier and convenient is not clearly established. That the continued use of his middle name would cause confusion and difficulty does not constitute proper and reasonable cause to drop it from his registered complete name. In addition, petitioner is only a minor. Considering the nebulous foundation on which his petition for change of name is based, it is best that the matter of change of his name be left to his judgment and discretion when he reaches the age of majority. As he is of tender age, he may not yet understand and appreciate the value of the change of his name and granting of the same at this point may just prejudice him in his rights under our laws. 134) Briones vs. Miguel G.R. No. 156343 October 18, 2004 Facts: Petitioner Joey D. Briones filed a Petition for Habeas Corpus against respondents Maricel Pineda Miguel and Francisca Pineda Miguel, to obtain custody of his minor child Michael Kevin Pineda. Later, petitioner filed an Amended Petition to include Loreta P. Miguel, the mother of the minor, as one of the respondents. The petitioner alleges that the minor Michael Kevin Pineda is his illegitimate son with respondent Loreta P. Miguel. The petitioner further alleges that he caused the minor child to be brought to the Philippines so that he could take care of him and send him to school. That respondents Maricel P. Miguel and Francisca P. Miguel came to the house of the petitioner in Caloocan City on the pretext that they were visiting the minor child and requested that they be allowed to bring the said child for recreation at the SM Department store. They promised him that they will bring him back in the afternoon, to which the petitioner agreed. However, the respondents did not bring him back as promised by them. The petitioner went several times to respondent Maricel P. Miguel at Tanza, Tuguegarao City but he was informed that the child is with the latters mother at Batal Heights, Santiago City. When he went there, respondent Francisca P. Miguel told him that Michael Kevin Pineda is with her daughter at Tuguegarao City. He sought the assistance of the police and the Department of Social Welfare to locate his son and to bring him back to him, but all his efforts were futile. Hence, he was constrained to file a Petition for Habeas Corpus. The petitioner prays that the custody of his son Michael Kevin Pineda be given to him as his biological father and as he has demonstrated his capability to support and educate him. The respondents filed their Comment, in their Comment, the respondent Loreta P. Miguel denies the allegation of the petitioner that he was the one who brought their child to the Philippines and stated that she was the one who brought him here pursuant to their agreement. She likewise denies petitioners allegation that respondents Maricel P. Miguel and Francisca P. Miguel were the ones who took the child from the petitioner or the latters parents. She averred that she was the one who took Michael Kevin Pineda from the petitioner when she returned to the Philippines and that the latter readily agreed and consented. Respondent Loreta P. Miguel alleges that the

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petitioner was deported from Japan under the assumed name of Renato Juanzon when he was found to have violated or committed an infraction of the laws of Japan. She further stated that since the time the petitioner arrived in the Philippines, he has not been gainfully employed. The custody of the child was entrusted to petitioners parents while they were both working in Japan. She added that even before the custody of the child was given to the petitioners parents, she has already been living separately from the petitioner in Japan because the latter was allegedly maintaining an illicit affair with another woman until his deportation. Respondent Loreta P. Miguel prays that the custody of her minor child be given to her and invokes Article 213, Paragraph 2 of the Family Code and Article 363 of the Civil Code of the Philippines. Issue: Who Should Have Custody of the Child? Held: Under the Family Code there are only two classes of children -- legitimate (and those who, like the legally adopted, have the rights of legitimate children) and illegitimate. All children conceived and born outside a valid marriage are illegitimate, unless the law itself gives them legitimate status. Obviously, Michael is a natural ("illegitimate," under the Family Code) child, as there is nothing in the records showing that his parents were suffering from a legal impediment to marry at the time of his birth. Both acknowledge that Michael is their son. As earlier explained and pursuant to Article 176, parental authority over him resides in his mother, Respondent Loreta, notwithstanding his fathers recognition of him. There is thus no question that Respondent Loreta, being the mother of and having sole parental authority over the minor, is entitled to have custody of him. She has the right to keep him in her company. She cannot be deprived of that right, and she may not even renounce or transfer it "except in the cases authorized by law. Article 213 of the Family Code that, generally, no child under seven years of age shall be separated from the mother, except when the court finds cause to order otherwise. Only the most compelling of reasons, such as the mothers unfitness to exercise sole parental authority, shall justify her deprivation of parental authority and the award of custody to someone else. In the past, the following grounds have been considered ample justification to deprive a mother of custody and parental authority: neglect or abandonment, unemployment, immorality, habitual drunkenness, drug addiction, maltreatment of the child, insanity, and affliction with a communicable disease. 135) de Santos vs. Hon. Angeles and Conchita Talag de Santos G.R. No. 105619 December 12, 1995 Facts: On February 7, 1941, Dr. Antonio de Santos married Sofia Bona, which union was blessed with a daughter, herein petitioner Maria Rosario de Santos. After some time, their relationship became strained to the breaking point. Thereafter, Antonio fell in love with a fellow doctor, Conchita Talag, private respondent herein. Antonio sought a formal dissolution of his first marriage by obtaining a divorce decree from a Nevada court in 1949. Aware that said decree was a worthless scrap of paper in our jurisdiction which then, as now, did not recognize divorces, Antonio proceeded to Tokyo, Japan in 1951 to marry private respondent, with whom he had been cohabiting since his de facto separation from Sofia. This union produced eleven children. On March 30, 1967, Sofia died in Guatemala. Less than a month later, on April 23, 1967, Antonio and private respondent contracted a marriage in Tagaytay City celebrated under Philippine laws. On March 8, 1981, Antonio died intestate leaving properties with an estimated value of P15,000,000.00. On May 15, 1981, private respondent went to court asking for the issuance of letters of administration in her favor in connection with the settlement of her late husband's estate. She alleged, among other things, that the decedent was survived by twelve legitimate heirs, namely, herself, their ten surviving children, and petitioner. There being no opposition, her petition was granted. After six years of protracted intestate proceedings, however, petitioner decided to intervene. Thus, in a motion she filed she argued that private respondent's children were illegitimate. This was challenged by private respondent although the latter admitted during the hearing that all her children were born prior to Sofia's death in 1967. After approval of private respondent's account of her administration, the court a quo passed upon petitioner's motion. The court declared private respondent's ten children legitimated and instituted and declared them, along with petitioner and private respondent, as the heirs of Antonio de Santos.

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Petitioner sought a reconsideration of said order but this was denied. Hence, she filed the instant petition for certiorari on June 16, 1992, contending that since only natural children can be legitimized, the trial court mistakenly declared as legitimated her half brothers and sisters. Issue: Can natural children by legal fiction be legitimized? Held: Article 269 of the Civil Code expressly states: Art. 269. Only natural children can be legitimated. Children born outside wedlock of parents who, at the time of the conception of the former, were not disqualified by any impediment to marry each other, are natural. In other words, a child's parents should not have been disqualified to marry each other at the time of conception for him to qualify as a "natural child." In the case at bench, there is no question that all the children born to private respondent and deceased Antonio de Santos were conceived and born when the latter's valid marriage to petitioner's mother was still subsisting. That private respondent and the decedent were married abroad after the latter obtained in Nevada, U.S.A. a decree of divorce from his legitimate wife does not change this fact, for a divorce granted abroad was not recognized in this jurisdiction at the time. Evidently, the decedent was aware of this fact, which is why he had to have the marriage solemnized in Tokyo, outside of the Philippines. It may be added here that he was likewise aware of the nullity of the Tokyo marriage for after his legitimate, though estranged wife died, he hastily contracted another marriage with private respondent, this time here in Tagaytay.

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XV. ADOPTION 136) Republic vs CA and Zenaida Bobiles G.R. No. 92326 January 24, 1992 Facts: On February 2, 1988, Zenaida Corteza Bobiles filed a petition to adopt Jason Condat, then six (6) years old and who had been living with her family since he was four (4) months old, before the Regional Trial Court. The trial court rendered the minor child, JASON CONDAT, be freed from all legal obligations of obedience and maintenance with respect to his natural parents, and be, to all intents and purposes, the child of the spouses Dioscoro and Zenaida Bobiles, and the surname of the child be changed to "Bobiles" which is the surname of the petitioner. The petition for adoption was filed by private respondent Zenaida C. Bobiles on February 2, 1988, when the law applicable was Presidential Decree No. 603, the Child and Youth Welfare Code. Under said code, a petition for adoption may be filed by either of the spouses or by both of them. However, after the trial court rendered its decision and while the case was pending on appeal in the Court of Appeals, Executive Order No. 209, the Family Code, took effect on August 3, 1988. Under the said new law, joint adoption by husband and wife is mandatory. On the foregoing consideration, petitioner contends that the petition for adoption should be dismissed outright for it was filed solely by private respondent without joining her husband, in violation of Article 185 of the Family Code which requires joint adoption by the spouses. It argues that the Family Code must be applied retroactively to the petition filed by Mrs. Bobiles, as the latter did not acquire a vested right to adopt Jason Condat by the mere filing of her petition for adoption. Issue: Can the Family Code be applied retroactively to the petition for adoption filed by Zenaida Bobiles and granting that the Family Code should not apply retroactively, should the CA have modified the trial courts decision by granting the adoption in favor of private respondent only, her husband not being a petitioner? Held: Article 246 of the Family Code provides for retroactive effect of appropriate relevant provisions thereof, subject to the qualification that such retrospective application will not prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights in accordance with the Civil Code or other laws. A vested right is one whose existence, effectivity and extent does not depend upon events foreign to the will of the holder. Vested rights include not only legal or equitable title to the enforcement of a demand, but also an exemption from new obligations created after the right has vested. Under the Child and Youth Welfare Code, private respondent had the right to file a petition for adoption by herself, without joining her husband therein. When Mrs. Bobiles filed her petition, she was exercising her explicit and unconditional right under said law. Upon her filing thereof, her right to file such petition alone and to have the same proceed to final adjudication, in accordance with the law in force at the time, was already vested and cannot be prejudiced or impaired by the enactment of a new law. When private respondent filed her petition in Special Proceeding, the trial court acquired jurisdiction there over in accordance with the governing law. Jurisdiction being a matter of substantive law, the established rule is that the jurisdiction of the court is determined by the statute in force at the time of the commencement of the action. Although Dioscoro Bobiles was not named as one of the petitioners in the petition for adoption filed by his wife, his affidavit of consent attached to the petition and expressly made an integral part thereof, shows that he himself actually joined his wife in adopting the child. Those declarations, and his subsequent confirmatory testimony in open court, are sufficient to make him a co-petitioner. Under the circumstances then obtaining, and by reason of his foreign residence, he must have yielded to the legal advice that an affidavit of consent on his part sufficed to make him a party to the petition. This is evident from the text of his affidavit. Punctiliousness in language and pedantry in the formal requirements should yield to and be eschewed in the higher considerations of substantial justice. The future of an innocent child must not be compromised by arbitrary insistence of rigid adherence to procedural rules on the form of pleadings.

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137) Cang vs. CA G.R. No. 105308 September 25, 1998 Facts: Petitioner Herbert Cang and Anna Marie Clavano who were married on January 27, 1973, begot three children, namely: Keith, born on July 3, 1973; Charmaine, born on January 23, 1977, and Joseph Anthony, born on January 3, 1981. During the early years of their marriage, the Cang couple's relationship was undisturbed. However, Anna Marie learned of her husband's alleged extramarital affair with Wilma Soco, a family friend of the Clavanos. Upon learning of her husband's alleged illicit liaison, Anna Marie filed a petition for legal separation with alimony pendente lite with the then Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court which rendered a decision approving the joint manifestation of the Cang spouses providing that they agreed to live separately and apart or from bed and board. Petitioner then left for the United States where he sought a divorce from Anna Marie before the Second Judicial District Court of the State of Nevada. Said court issued the divorce decree that also granted sole custody of the three minor children to Anna Marie, reserving rights of visitation at all reasonable times and places to petitioner. Thereafter, petitioner took an American wife and thus became a naturalized American citizen. In 1986, he divorced his American wife and never remarried. While in the United States, petitioner worked in Tablante Medical Clinic earning P18,000.00 to P20,000.00 a month a portion of which was remitted to the Philippines for his children's expenses and another, deposited in the bank in the name of his children. Meanwhile, on September 25, 1987, private respondents Ronald V. Clavano and Maria Clara Diago Clavano, respectively the brother and sisterin-law of Anna Marie, filed Special Proceedings for the adoption of the three minor Cang children before the Regional Trial Court. The petition bears the signature of then 14-year-old Keith signifying consent to his adoption. Anna Marie likewise filed an affidavit of consent alleging that her husband had "evaded his legal obligation to support his children; that her brothers and sisters including Ronald V. Clavano, had been helping her in taking care of the children; that because she would be going to the United States to attend to a family business, leaving the children would be a problem and would naturally hamper her job-seeking venture abroad; and that her husband had long forfeited his parental rights over the children. Upon learning of the petitioner for adoption, petitioner immediately returned to the Philippines and filed an opposition thereto, alleging that, although private respondents Ronald and Maria Clara Clavano were financially capable of supporting the children while his finances were "too meager" compared to theirs, he could not "in conscience, allow anybody to strip him of his parental authority over his beloved children." Pending resolution of the petition for adoption, petitioner moved to reacquire custody over his children alleging that Anna Marie had transferred to the United States thereby leaving custody of their children to private respondents. The Regional Trial Court issued an order finding that Anna Marie had, in effect, relinquished custody over the children and, therefore, such custody should be transferred to the father. The court then directed the Clavanos to deliver custody over the minors to petitioner. Issue: Can minor children be legally adopted without the written consent of a natural parent on the ground that the latter has abandoned them? Held: It is evident that notwithstanding the amendments to the law, the written consent of the natural parent to the adoption has remained a requisite for its validity. The written consent of the natural parent is indispensable for the validity of the decree of adoption. Nevertheless, the requirement of written consent can be dispensed with if the parent has abandoned the child or that such parent is insane or hopelessly intemperate. The court may acquire jurisdiction over the case even without the written consent of the parents or one of the parents provided that the petition for adoption alleges facts sufficient to warrant exemption from compliance therewith. However, in cases where the father opposes the adoption primarily because his consent thereto was not sought, the matter of whether he had abandoned his child becomes a proper issue for determination.The issue of abandonment by the oppositor natural parent is a preliminary issue that an adoption court must first confront. Only upon failure of the oppositor natural father to prove to the satisfaction of the court that he did not abandon his child may the petition for adoption be considered on its merits. In its ordinary sense, the word abandon

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means to forsake entirely, to forsake or renounce utterly. In reference to abandonment of a child by his parent, the act of abandonment imports any conduct of the parent which evinces a settled purpose to forego all parental duties and relinquish all parental claims to the child. It means neglect or refusal to perform the natural and legal obligations of care and support which parents owe their children. In the instant case, records disclose that petitioners conduct did not manifest a settled purpose to forego all parental duties and relinquish all parental claims over his children as to constitute abandonment. Physical estrangement alone, without financial and moral desertion, is not tantamount to abandonment. While admittedly, petitioner was physically absent as he was then in the United States, he was not remiss in his natural and legal obligations of love, care and support for his children. He maintained regular communication with his wife and children through letters and telephone. He used to send packages by mail and catered to their whims. Wherefore, the questioned Decision and Resolution of the Court of Appeals, as well as the decision of the Regional Trial Court of Cebu, are SET ASIDE thereby denying the petition for adoption of Keith, Charmaine and Joseph Anthony, all surnamed Cang, by the spouse respondents Ronald and Maria Clara Clavano. 138) In the matter of the petition for a writ of habeas corpus of a minor Angelie Anne Cervantes, Nelson Cervantes and Zenaida Cervantes vs. Gina Carreon Fajardo and Conrado Fajardo G.R. No. 79955 January 27, 1989 Facts: This is a petition for a writ of Habeas Corpus filed with this Court over the person of the minor Angelie Anne Cervantes. The minor was born on 14 February 1987 to respondents Conrado Fajardo and Gina Carreon, who are common-law husband and wife. Respondents offered the child for adoption to Gina Carreon's sister and brother-in-law, the herein petitioners Zenaida Carreon-Cervantes and Nelson Cervantes, spouses, who took care and custody of the child when she was barely two (2) weeks old. An Affidavit of Consent to the adoption of the child by herein petitioners, was also executed by respondent Gina Carreon The appropriate petition for adoption was filed by petitioners over the child before the Regional Trial Court and rendered a decision granting the petition. The child was then known as Angelie Anne Fajardo. The court ordered that the child be freed from parental authority of her natural parents as well as from legal obligation and maintenance to them and that from now on shall be, for all legal intents and purposes, known as Angelie Anne Cervantes, a child of petitioners and capable of inheriting their estate . Thereafter, adoptive parents, Nelson and Zenaida Cervantes, received a letter from the respondents demanding to be paid the amount of P150,000.00, otherwise, they would get back their child. Petitioners refused to accede to the demand. As a result, while petitioners were out at work, the respondent Gina Carreon took the child from her yaya at the petitioners' residence on the pretext that she was instructed to do so by her mother. Respondent Gina Carreon brought the child to her house. Petitioners thereupon demanded the return of the child, but Gina Carreon refused, saying that she had no desire to give up her child for adoption and that the affidavit of consent to the adoption she had executed was not fully explained to her. She sent word to the petitioners that she will, however, return the child to the petitioners if she were paid the amount of P150,000.00. Issue: Who has the right to the custody of Angelie Ann Cervantes? Held: In all cases involving the custody, care, education and property of children, the latter's welfare is paramount. The provision that no mother shall be separated from a child under five (5) years of age, will not apply where the Court finds compelling reasons to rule otherwise. In all controversies regarding the custody of minors, the foremost consideration is the moral, physical and social welfare of the child concerned, taking into account the resources and moral as well as social standing of the contending parents. Never has this Court deviated from this criterion. It is undisputed that respondent Conrado Fajardo is legally married to a woman other than respondent Gina Carreon, and his relationship with the latter is a common-law husband and wife relationship. His open cohabitation with co-respondent Gina Carreon

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will not accord the minor that desirable atmosphere where she can grow and develop into an upright and moral-minded person. Besides, respondent Gina Carreon had previously given birth to another child by another married man with whom she lived for almost three years but who eventually left her and vanished. For a minor (like Angelie Anne C. Cervantes) to grow up with a sister whose father is not her true father, could also affect the moral outlook and values of said minor. Upon the other hand, petitioners who are legally married appear to be morally, physically, financially, and socially capable of supporting the minor and giving her a future better than what the natural mother who is not only jobless but also maintains an illicit relation with a married man, can most likely give her. Besides, the minor has been legally adopted by petitioners with the full knowledge and consent of respondents. A decree of adoption has the effect, among others, of dissolving the authority vested in natural parents over the adopted child, except where the adopting parent is the spouse of the natural parent of the adopted, in which case, parental authority over the adopted shall be exercised jointly by both spouses. The adopting parents have the right to the care and custody of the adopted child and exercise parental authority and responsibility over him. The custody and care of the minor Angelie Anne Cervantes are hereby granted to petitioners to whom they properly belong, and respondents are ordered (if they still have not) to deliver said minor to the petitioners immediately upon notice hereof. 139) Macario Tamargo, Celso Tamargo and Aurelia Tamargo vs. CA and Hon. Rubio and Victor Bunduc and Clara Bunduc G.R. No.85044 June 3, 1992 Facts: On 20 October 1982, Adelberto Bundoc, then a minor of 10 years of age, shot Jennifer Tamargo with an air rifle causing injuries which resulted in her death. Accordingly, a civil complaint for damages was filed with the Regional Trial Court by petitioner Macario Tamargo, Jennifer's adopting parent, and petitioner spouses Celso and Aurelia Tamargo, Jennifer's natural parents against respondent spouses Victor and Clara Bundoc, Adelberto's natural parents with whom he was living at the time of the tragic incident. Prior to the incident, or on 10 December 1981, the spouses Sabas and Felisa Rapisura had filed a petition to adopt the minor Adelberto Bundoc in Special Proceedings before the then Court of First Instance. This petition for adoption was grunted on, 18 November 1982, that is, after Adelberto had shot and killed Jennifer. In their Answer, respondent spouses Bundoc, Adelberto's natural parents, reciting the result of the foregoing petition for adoption, claimed that not they, but rather the adopting parents, namely the spouses Sabas and Felisa Rapisura, were indispensable parties to the action since parental authority had shifted to the adopting parents from the moment the successful petition for adoption was filed. Petitioners in their Reply contended that since Adelberto Bundoc was then actually living with his natural parents, parental authority had not ceased nor been relinquished by the mere filing and granting of a petition for adoption. The trial court dismissed petitioners' complaint, ruling that respondent natural parents of Adelberto indeed were not indispensable parties to the action. Petitioners, then went to the Court of Appeals on a petition for mandamus and certiorari questioning the trial court's Decision. The Court of Appeals dismissed the petition, ruling that petitioners had lost their right to appeal. Issue: Whether or not Adelbertos natural parents are indispensable parties to the action? Held: This principle of parental liability is a species of what is frequently designated as vicarious liability, or the doctrine of "imputed negligence, where a person is not only liable for torts committed by himself, but also for torts committed by others with whom he has a certain relationship and for whom he is responsible. Thus, parental liability is made a natural or logical consequence of the duties and responsibilities of parents their parental authority which includes the instructing, controlling and disciplining of the child. The civil liability imposed upon parents for the torts of their minor children living with them, may be seen to be based upon the parental authority vested by the Civil Code upon such parents. The civil law assumes that when an unemancipated child living

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with its parents commits a tortious acts, the parents were negligent in the performance of their legal and natural duty closely to supervise the child who is in their custody and control. Parental liability is, in other words, anchored upon parental authority coupled with presumed parental dereliction in the discharge of the duties accompanying such authority. The parental dereliction is, of course, only presumed and the presumption can be overtuned under Article 2180 of the Civil Code by proof that the parents had exercised all the diligence of a good father of a family to prevent the damage. In the instant case, the shooting of Jennifer by Adelberto with an air rifle occured when parental authority was still lodged in respondent Bundoc spouses, the natural parents of the minor Adelberto. It would thus follow that the natural parents who had then actual custody of the minor Adelberto, are the indispensable parties to the suit for damages. The basis of parental liability for the torts of a minor child is the relationship existing between the parents and the minor child living with them and over whom, the law presumes, the parents exercise supervision and control. We do not consider that retroactive effect may be giver to the decree of adoption so as to impose a liability upon the adopting parents accruing at a time when adopting parents had no actual or physically custody over the adopted child. Retroactive affect may perhaps be given to the granting of the petition for adoption where such is essential to permit the accrual of some benefit or advantage in favor of the adopted child. In the instant case, however, to hold that parental authority had been retroactively lodged in the Rapisura spouses so as to burden them with liability for a tortious act that they could not have foreseen and which they could not have prevented (since they were at the time in the United States and had no physical custody over the child Adelberto) would be unfair and unconscionable. Such a result, moreover, would be inconsistent with the philosophical and policy basis underlying the doctrine of vicarious liability. Put a little differently, no presumption of parental dereliction on the part of the adopting parents, the Rapisura spouses, could have arisen since Adelberto was not in fact subject to their control at the time the tort was committed. 140) LAHOM vs. SIBULO G.R. No. 143989 July 14, 2003 Facts: Spouses Dr. Diosdado Lahom and Isabelita Lahom filed in 1971 a petition to adopt Melvin Sibulo, Isabelita Lahom`s nephew. The petition was granted in 1972. Hence, the Civil Registrar of Naga City changed the name "Jose Melvin Sibulo" to "Jose Melvin Lahom." However, in 1999, the petitioner filed a petition to rescind the adoption on the ground of the continuous refusal of the respondent to change his surname from Sibulo to Lahom and for his indifference towards the petitioner by failing to visit her in Naga. In 1998, Republic Act (R.A.) No. 8552, also known as the Domestic Adoption Act, went into effect which deleted from the law the right of adopters to rescind a decree of adoption. Issue: Whether or not the adoption of respondent may still be revoked or rescinded by an adopter. Held: The new law withdrew the right of an adopter to rescind the adoption decree and gave to the adopted child the sole right to sever the legal ties created by adoption. It was months after the effectivity of R.A. No. 8552 that herein petitioner filed an action to revoke the decree of adoption granted in 1975. By then, the new law, had already abrogated and repealed the right of an adopter under the Civil Code and the Family Code to rescind a decree of adoption. Consistently with its earlier pronouncements, the Court should now hold that the action for rescission of the adoption decree, having been initiated by petitioner after R.A. No. 8552 had come into force, no longer could be pursued. Interestingly, even before the passage of the statute, an action to set aside the adoption is subject to the five-year bar rule under Rule 100 of the Rules of Court and that the adopter would lose the right to revoke the adoption decree after the lapse of that period. The exercise of the right within a prescriptive period is a condition that could not fulfill the requirements of a vested right entitled to protection. It must also be acknowledged that a person has no vested right in statutory privileges. While adoption has often been referred to in the context of a "right," the privilege to adopt is itself not naturally innate or fundamental but rather a right merely created by

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statute. It is a privilege that is governed by the state's determination on what it may deem to be for the best interest and welfare of the child. While R.A. No. 8552 has unqualifiedly withdrawn from an adopter a consequential right to rescind the adoption decree even in cases where the adoption might clearly turn out to be undesirable, it remains, nevertheless, the bounden duty of the Court to apply the law. Dura lex sed lex would be the hackneyed truism that those caught in the law have to live with. It is still noteworthy, however, that an adopter, while barred from severing the legal ties of adoption, can always for valid reasons cause the forfeiture of certain benefits otherwise accruing to an undeserving child. For instance, upon the grounds recognized by law, an adopter may deny to an adopted child his legitime and, by a will and testament, may freely exclude him from having a share in the disposable portion of his estate. WHEREFORE, the assailed judgment of the court a quo is AFFIRMED. No costs. 141) IN THE MATTER OF THE ADOPTION OF STEPHANIE NATHY ASTORGA GARCIA G.R. No. 148311 March 31, 2005 Facts: Honorato B. Catindig filed a petition to adopt his minor illegitimate child Stephanie Nathy Astorga Garcia alleging that Stephanie has been using her mother's middle name and surname and that he is now a widower and qualified to be her adopting parent. He prayed that Stephanie's middle name Astorga be changed to 'Garcia, her mother's surname, and that her surname Garcia be changed to Catindig, his surname . The trial court granted the adoption and ruled that the minor shall be known as STEPHANIE NATHY CATINDIG. The petitioner filed a motion for clarification and/or reconsideration praying that Stephanie should be allowed to use the surname of her natural mother (GARCIA) as her middle name but was denied by the trial court ruling that there is no law or jurisprudence allowing an adopted child to use the surname of his biological mother as his middle name. Issue: Whether or not an illegitimate child may use the surname of her mother as her middle name when she is subsequently adopted by her natural father. Held: We find merit in the petition. Use Of Surname Is Fixed By Law For all practical and legal purposes, a man's name is the designation by which he is known and called in the community in which he lives and is best known. It is defined as the word or combination of words by which a person is distinguished from other individuals and, also, as the label or appellation which he bears for the convenience of the world at large addressing him, or in speaking of or dealing with him. It is both of personal as well as public interest that every person must have a name. The name of an individual has two parts: (1) the given or proper name and (2) the surname or family name. The given or proper name is that which is given to the individual at birth or at baptism, to distinguish him from other individuals. The surname or family name is that which identifies the family to which he belongs and is continued from parent to child. The given name may be freely selected by the parents for the child, but the surname to which the child is entitled is fixed by law. Law Is Silent As To The Use Of Middle Name ' As correctly submitted by both parties, there is no law regulating the use of a middle name. Even Article 176 of the Family Code, as amended by Republic Act No. 9255, otherwise known as ' An Act Allowing Illegitimate Children To Use The Surname Of Their Father, is silent as to what middle name a child may use. The middle name or the mother's surname is only considered in Article 375(1), quoted above, in case there is identity of names and surnames between ascendants and descendants, in which case, the middle name or the mother's surname shall be added. Notably, the law is likewise silent as to what middle name an adoptee may use . Article 365 of the Civil Code merely provides that ' an adopted child shall bear the surname of the adopter . Also, Article 189 of the Family Code, enumerating the legal effects of adoption, is likewise silent on the matter, thus: "(1) For civil purposes, the adopted shall be deemed to be a legitimate child of the adopters

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and both shall acquire the reciprocal rights and obligations arising from the relationship of parent and child, including the right of the adopted to use the surname of the adopters; The Underlying Intent of Adoption Is In Favor of the Adopted Child ' One of the effects of adoption is that the adopted is deemed to be a legitimate child of the adopter for all intents and purposes pursuant to Article 189 of the Family Code and Section 17 Article V of RA 8552. Being a legitimate child by virtue of her adoption, it follows that Stephanie is entitled to all the rights provided by law to a legitimate child without discrimination of any kind, including the right to bear the surname of her father and her mother, as discussed above. Additionally, as aptly stated by both parties, Stephanie's continued use of her mother's surname (Garcia) as her middle name will maintain her maternal lineage. It is to be noted that Article 189(3) of the Family Code and Section 18, Article V of RA 8552 (law on adoption) provide that the adoptee remains an intestate heir of his/her biological parent. Hence, Stephanie can well assert or claim her hereditary rights from her natural mother in the future. Moreover, records show that Stephanie and her mother are living together in the house built by petitioner for them at 390 Tumana, San Jose, Baliuag, Bulacan. Petitioner provides for all their needs. Stephanie is closely attached to both her mother and father. She calls them 'Mama and Papa. Indeed, they are one normal happy family. Hence, to allow Stephanie to use her mother's surname as her middle name will not only sustain her continued loving relationship with her mother but will also eliminate the stigma of her illegitimacy. Liberal Construction of Adoption Statutes In Favor Of Adoption It is a settled rule that adoption statutes, being humane and salutary, should be liberally construed to carry out the beneficent purposes of adoption. The interests and welfare of the adopted child are of primary and paramount consideration, hence, every reasonable intendment should be sustained to promote and fulfill these noble and compassionate objectives of the law. Lastly, Art. 10 of the New Civil Code provides that: In case of doubt in the interpretation or application of laws, it is presumed that the lawmaking body intended right and justice to prevail. Hence, since there is no law prohibiting an illegitimate child adopted by her natural father, like Stephanie, to use, as middle name her mother's surname, we find no reason why she should not be allowed to do so. WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED. The assailed Decision is partly MODIFIED in the sense that Stephanie should be allowed to use her mother's surname 'GARCIA as her middle name.

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XVI. PARENTAL AUTHORITY 142) DAVID vs. CA G.R. No. 111180 November 16, 1995 Facts: Petitioner Daisie T. David worked as secretary of private respondent Ramon R. Villar, a businessman in Angeles City. Private respondent is a married man and the father of four children, all grown-up. After a while, the relationship between petitioner and private respondent developed into an intimate one, as a result of which a son, Christopher J., was born on March 9, 1985 to them. Christopher J. was followed by two more children, both girls, namely Christine and Cathy Mae. The relationship became known to private respondent's wife when Daisie took Christopher J. to Villar's house in Angeles City and introduced him to Villar's legal wife. After this, the children of Daisie were freely brought by Villar to his house as they were eventually accepted by his legal family. In the summer of 1991, Villar asked Daisie to allow Christopher J., then six years of age, to go with his family to Boracay. Daisie agreed, but after the trip, Villar refused to give back the child. Villar said he had enrolled Christopher J. at the Holy Family Academy for the next school year. Hence, Daisie filed a petition for habeas corpus on behalf of Christopher J. The RTC rendered judgment in favor of the petitioner ruling that the custody of the child shall be given to the mother and directing respondent to give a temporary support of P 3,000.00 a month. The Court of Appeals reversed the RTC`s judgment holding that habeas corpus case was not the proper remedy in that the latter contemplate a situation where the parents are married to each other but are separated. Moreover, it ruled that in an adulterous relationship, the question of custody shall be brought in a case singularly filed for the purpose and that the trial court did not acquire jurisdiction over the other minor children. It ruled that it is for the best interest of Christopher J. That he should temporarily remain under the custody of respondent until the issue on custody and support shall have been determined in a proper case. Hence, this petition. Issue: Whether or not the custody of the child shall be given to the child. Held: Rule 102, 1 of the Rules of Court provides that "the writ of habeas corpus shall extend to all cases of illegal confinement or detention by which any person is deprived of his liberty, or by which the rightful custody of any person is withheld from the person entitled thereto." It is indeed true, as the Court of Appeals observed, that the determination of the right to the custody of minor children is relevant in cases where the parents, who are married to each other, are for some reason separated from each other. It does not follow, however, that it cannot arise in any other situation. In the case at bar, Christopher J. is an illegitimate child since at the time of his conception, his father, private respondent Ramon R. Villar, was married to another woman other than the child's mother. As such, pursuant to Art. 176 of the Family Code, Christopher J. is under the parental authority of his mother, the herein petitioner, who, as a consequence of such authority, is entitled to have custody of him. Since, admittedly, petitioner has been deprived of her rightful custody of her child by private respondent, she is entitled to issuance of the writ of habeas corpus. The fact that private respondent has recognized the minor child may be a ground for ordering him to give support to the latter, but not for giving him custody of the child. Under Art. 213 of the Family Code, "no child under seven years of age shall be separated from the mother unless the court finds compelling reasons to order otherwise." Nor is the fact that private respondent is well-off a reason for depriving petitioner of the custody of her children, especially considering that she has been able to rear and support them on her own since they were born. Petitioner is a market vendor earning from P2,000 to P3,000 per month in 1993 when the RTC decision was rendered. She augments her income by working as secretary at the Computer System Specialist, Inc. earning a monthly income of P4,500.00. She has an arrangement with her employer so that she can personally attend to her children. She works up to 8:00 o'clock in the evening to make up for time lost during the day. That she receives help from her parents and sister for the support of the three children is not a point against her. Cooperation, compassion, love and concern for every member of the family are characteristics of the close family ties that bind the Filipino family and have made it what it is. Although the question of support is proper in a proceeding for that purpose, the grant of support in

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this case is justified by the fact that private respondent has expressed willingness to support the minor child. The order for payment of allowance need not be conditioned on the grant to him of custody of the child. In the case at bar, as has already been pointed out, Christopher J., being less than seven years of age at least at the time the case was decided by the RTC, cannot be taken from the mother's custody. Even now that the child is over seven years of age, the mother's custody over him will have to be upheld because the child categorically expressed preference to live with his mother. Under Art. 213 of the Family Code, courts must respect the "choice of the child over seven years of age, unless the parent chosen is unfit" and here it has not been shown that the mother is in any way unfit to have custody of her child. Indeed, if private respondent loves his child, he should not condition the grant of support for him on the award of his custody to him (private respondent). WHEREFORE, the decision of the Court of Appeals is REVERSED and private respondent is ORDERED to deliver the minor Christopher J. T. David to the custody of his mother, the herein petitioner, and to give him temporary support in the amount of P3,000.00, pending the fixing of the amount of support in an appropriate action. 143) Libi vs IAC G.R. No. 70890 September 18, 1992 Facts: Respondent spouses are the legitimate parents of Julie Ann Gotiong who was an 18-yearold first year commerce student of the University of San Carlos, Cebu City while petitioners are the parents of Wendell Libi who was then a minor between 18 and 19 years of age living with his parents. Julie Anne Goting and Wendell Libi were sweethearts until after two years when Julie Ann broke up with Wendell after she supposedly found him to be sadistic and irresponsible. During the first and second weeks of their break up, Wendell kept pestering Julie Ann with demands of reconciliation but the latter persited with her refusal prompting the former to resort to threats against her. Hence, Julie Anne stayed at the house of her bestfriend to avoid Wendell. Julie Ann and Wendell died each from a single gunshot wound inflicted with the sme firearm, a revolver licensed in the name of petitioner Cresencio Libi which was recovered from the scene of the crime inside the residence of private respondents. Private respondent submitted that Wendell caused their daughter`s death by shooting her with the firearm and then turning the gun on himself to commit suicide. Petitioner`s, however contended that an unknown third person, whom Wendell may have displeased or antagonized by reason of his work as narcotics informer must have caused their death. Julie Ann`s parents filed a case to recover civil damages arising from the vicarious liability of Wendell`s parents under Art. 2180 of the Civil Code. Issue: Whether or not petitioners are liable vicarious liability. for

Held: In imposing sanctions for the so-called vicarious liability of petitioners, respondent court cites Fuella cs Callado, et al. Which supposedly holds that the subsidiary liability of parents for damages caused by their minor children imposed by Article 2180 of the New Civil Code covers obligation arising from both quasi-delicts and criminal offenses, followed by an extended quotation ostensibly from teh same case explaining why under Article 2180 of the Civil Code and Article 101 of the Revised Penal Code parents should assume subsidiary liability for the damage cause by their minor children. Now, we do not have any objection to the doctrinal rule holding the parents liable, but the categorization of their liability being subsidiary, and not primary, in nature requires a hard second look considering previous decisions of this court on the matter which warrant comparative analysis. Our concern stems from our readings that if the liability of the parents for crimes or quasidelict of their minors is subsidiary, then the parents can neither invoke nor be absolved of civil liability on the defense that they acted with diligence of a good father of the family to prevent damages. On the other hand, if such liability imputed to the parents is considered direct and primary, that diligence could constitute a valid and substantial defense. We believe that the civil liability of the parents for quasi-delicts of their minor children is primary and not subsidiary. In fact, if we apply Article 2180 of the Civil Code which provides for solidary liability of joint tortfeasors, the persons responsible for the act or omission , in this case the minor and the father , in

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cas of his death or incapacity, the mother, are solidary liable. Under the foregoing rule, we hereby rule that the parents are and should be held primarily liable for the civil liability arising from criminal offenses committed by theri minor children under their legal authority or control, or who live in their company, unless it is proven that the former acted with the diligence of a good father of the family to prevent such damages. In the case at bar, whether the death of hapless Julie Ann Gotiong was caused by a felony or a quasi-delict committed by Wendel Libi, respondent court did not err in holding petitioner liable for damages arising therefrom. Subject to the preceding modifications of the premises relied upon by it therefor and on the bases of the legal imperatives herein explained, we conjoin with its findings that said petitioners failed to duly exercise the requisite diligentissimi patris familias to prevent such damages. 144) Espiritu vs.CA G.R. No. 115640 March 15, 1995 Facts: Petitioner Reynaldo Espiritu and respondent Teresita Masauding first met sometime in 1976 in Iligan City where Reynaldo was employed by the National Steel Corporation and Teresita was employed as a nurse in a local hospital. In 1977, Teresita left for Los Angeles, California to work as a nurse. She was able to acquire immigrant status sometime later. In 1984, Reynaldo was sent by his employer, the National Steel Corporation, to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as its liaison officer and Reynaldo and Teresita then began to maintain a common law relationship of husband and wife. Subsequently, Rosalind Therese was born. While they were on a brief vacation in the Philippines, Reynaldo and Teresita got married, and upon their return to the U.S.A., Reginald Vince was born. The relationship of the couple deteriorated until they decided to separate sometime in 1990. Teresita blamed Reynaldo for the break-up, stating he was always nagging her about money matters. Reynaldo, on the other hand, contended that Teresita was a spendthrift, buying expensive jewelry and antique furniture instead of attending to household expenses. Teresita left Reynaldo and the children and went back to California. She claims, however, that she spent a lot of money on long distance telephone calls to keep in constant touch with her children. Reynaldo brought his children home to the Philippines, but because his assignment in Pittsburgh was not yet completed, he was sent back by his company to Pittsburgh. He had to leave his children with his sister, co-petitioner Guillerma Layug and her family. Teresita claims that she did not immediately follow her children because Reynaldo filed a criminal case for bigamy against her and she was afraid of being arrested. Teresita, meanwhile, decided to return to the Philippines and filed the petition for a writ of habeas corpus against herein two petitioners to gain custody over the children. The RTC dismissed the petition for habeas corpus suspendeding Teresita's parental authority over Rosalind and Reginald and declared Reynaldo to have sole parental authority over them but with rights of visitation. The Court of Appeals reversed the trial court's decision. Hence, this petition. Issue: Whether or not the petitioner is entitled to the custody of the two children. Held: In ascertaining the welfare and best interests of the child, courts are mandated by the Family Code to take into account all relevant considerations. If a child is under seven years of age, the law presumes that the mother is the best custodian. The presumption is strong but it is not conclusive. It can be overcome by "compelling reasons". If a child is over seven, his choice is paramount but, again, the court is not bound by that choice. In its discretion, the court may find the chosen parent unfit and award custody to the other parent, or even to a third party as it deems fit under the circumstances. In the present case, both Rosalind and Reginald are now over seven years of age. Rosalind celebrated her seventh birthday on August 16, 1993 while Reginald reached the same age on January 12, 1995. Both are studying in reputable schools and appear to be fairly intelligent children, quite capable of thoughtfully determining the parent with whom they would want to live. Once the choice has been made, the burden returns to the court to investigate if the parent thus chosen is unfit to assume parental authority and custodial responsibility. We are inclined to sustain the findings and conclusions of the regional trial court because it

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gave greater attention to the choice of Rosalind and considered in detail all the relevant factors bearing on the issue of custody. When she was a little over 5 years old, Rosalind was referred to a child psychologist, Rita Flores Macabulos, to determine the effects of uprooting her from the Assumption College where she was studying. Four different tests were administered. The results of the tests are quite revealing. The responses of Rosalind about her mother were very negative causing the psychologist to delve deeper into the child's anxiety. Among the things revealed by Rosalind was an incident where she saw her mother hugging and kissing a "bad" man who lived in their house and worked for her father. Rosalind refused to talk to her mother even on the telephone. She tended to be emotionally emblazed because of constant fears that she may have to leave school and her aunt's family to go back to the United States to live with her mother. At about the same time, a social welfare case study was conducted for the purpose of securing the travel clearance required before minors may go abroad. Social Welfare Officer Emma D. Estrada Lopez, stated that the child Rosalind refused to go back to the United States and be reunited with her mother. She felt unloved and uncared for. Rosalind was more attached to her Yaya who did everything for her and Reginald. The child was found suffering from emotional shock caused by her mother's infidelity. Respondent Teresita, for her part, argues that the 7year age reference in the law applies to the date when the petition for a writ of habeas corpus is filed, not to the date when a decision is rendered. This argument is flawed. Considerations involving the choice made by a child must be ascertained at the time that either parent is given custody over the child. The matter of custody is not permanent and unalterable. Then too, it must be noted that both Rosalind and Reginald are now over 7 years of age. They understand the difference between right and wrong, ethical behavior and deviant immorality. Their best interests would be better served in an environment characterized by emotional stability and a certain degree of material sufficiency. There is nothing in the records to show that Reynaldo is an "unfit" person under Article 213 of the Family Code. Teresita does not deny that she was legally married to Roberto Lustado on December 17, 1984 in California. Less than a year later, she had already driven across the continental United States to commence living with another man, petitioner Reynaldo, in Pittsburgh. The two were married on October 7, 1987. Of course, to dilute this disadvantage on her part, this matter of her having contracted a bigamous marriage later with Reynaldo, Teresita tried to picture Reynaldo as a rapist, alleging further that she told Reynaldo about her marriage to Lustado on the occasion when she was raped by Reynaldo. Expectedly, Judge Harriet Demetriou of the Pasig RTC lent no weight to such tale. And even if this story were given credence, it adds to and not subtracts from the conviction of this Court about Teresita's values. Rape is an insidious crime against privacy. The argument that moral laxity or the habit of flirting from one man to another does not fall under "compelling reasons" is neither meritorious nor applicable in this case. Not only are the children over seven years old and their clear choice is the father, but the illicit or immoral activities of the mother had already caused emotional disturbances, personality conflicts, and exposure to conflicting moral values, at least in Rosalind. This is not to mention her conviction for the crime of bigamy, which from the records appears to have become final. The law is more than satisfied by the judgment of the trial court. The children are now both over seven years old. Their choice of the parent with whom they prefer to stay is clear from the record. From all indications, Reynaldo is a fit person, thus meeting the two requirements found in the first paragraph of Article 213 of the Family Code. The presumption under the second paragraph of said article no longer applies as the children are over seven years. WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby GRANTED. The decision of the Court of Appeals is reversed and set aside, and the decision of Branch 96 of the Regional Trial Court of the National Capital Judicial Region stationed in Quezon City and presided over by the Honorable Lucas P. Bersamin in its Civil Case No. Q-92-14206 awarding custody of the minors Rosalind and Reginald Espiritu to their father, Reynaldo Espiritu, is reinstated. No special pronouncement is made as to costs.

145) SANTOS vs. CA G.R. No. 113054 March 16, 1995 Facts:

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Petitioner Leouel Santos, Sr., an army lieutenant, and Julia Bedia a nurse by profession, were married in Iloilo City in 1986. Their union beget only one child, Leouel Santos, Jr. From the time the boy was released from the hospital until sometime thereafter, he had been in the care and custody of his maternal grandparents, private respondents Leopoldo and Ofelia Bedia. Petitioner and wife Julia agreed to place Leouel Jr. in the temporary custody of the latter's parents, the respondent spouses Bedia. The latter alleged that they paid for all the hospital bills, as well as the subsequent support of the boy because petitioner could not afford to do so. Julia Bedia-Santos left for the U.S.A. in 1988 to work. Petitioner alleged that he is not aware of her whereabouts and his efforts to locate her in the United States proved futile. PR`s claim that although abroad, their daughter Julia had been sending financial support to them for her son. PR`s contended that petitioner abducted the boy when petitioner along with his two brothers visited the Bedia household, where three-year old Leouel Jr. was staying. The spouses Bedia then filed a "Petition for Care, Custody and Control of Minor Ward Leouel Santos Jr., before the RTC which was granted on the same day and was affirmed by the CA. Issue: Whether or not the custody of minor Leouel Santos, Jr. shall be awarded to the petitioner. Held: The father and mother, being the natural guardians of unemancipated children, are dutybound and entitled to keep them in their custody and company.The child's welfare is always the paramount consideration in all questions concerning his care and custody. The law vests on the father and mother joint parental authority over the persons of their common children. In case of absence or death of either parent, the parent present shall continue exercising parental authority. Only in case of the parents' death, absence or unsuitability may substitute parental authority be exercised by the surviving grandparent. The situation obtaining in the case at bench is one where the mother of the minor Santos, Jr., is working in the United States while the father, petitioner Santos, Sr., is present. Not only are they physically apart but are also emotionally separated. There has been no decree of legal separation and petitioner's attempt to obtain an annulment of the marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity of his wife has failed. Petitioner assails the decisions of both the trial court and the appellate court to award custody of his minor son to his parents-in-law, the Bedia spouses on the ground that under Art. 214 of the Family Code, substitute parental authority of the grandparents is proper only when both parents are dead, absent or unsuitable. Petitioner's unfitness, according to him, has not been successfully shown by private respondents. We find the aforementioned considerations insufficient to defeat petitioner's parental authority and the concomitant right to have custody over the minor Leouel Santos, Jr., particularly since he has not been shown to be an unsuitable and unfit parent. Private respondents' demonstrated love and affection for the boy, notwithstanding, the legitimate father is still preferred over the grandparents. The latter's wealth is not a deciding factor, particularly because there is no proof that at the present time, petitioner is in no position to support the boy. The fact that he was unable to provide financial support for his minor son from birth up to over three years when he took the boy from his in-laws without permission, should not be sufficient reason to strip him of his permanent right to the child's custody. While petitioner's previous inattention is inexcusable and merits only the severest criticism, it cannot be construed as abandonment. His appeal of the unfavorable decision against him and his efforts to keep his only child in his custody may be regarded as serious efforts to rectify his past misdeeds. To award him custody would help enhance the bond between parent and son. It would also give the father a chance to prove his love for his son and for the son to experience the warmth and support which a father can give. WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED. The decision of the respondent Court of Appeals dated April 30, 1992 as well as its Resolution dated November 13, 1992 are hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Custody over the minor Leouel Santos Jr. is awarded to his legitimate father, herein petitioner Leouel Santos, Sr. 146) NERISSA Z. PEREZ vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS (Ninth Division) and RAY C. PEREZ 255 SCRA 661 ROMERO, J.

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FACTS: Private respondent Ray Perez is a doctor of medicine practicing in Cebu while petitioner Nerissa, his wife is a registered nurse. They were married on December 6, 1986. After six miscarriages, two operations and a high-risk pregnancy, petitioner finally gave birth to Ray II in New York on July 20, 1992. Petitioner who began work in the US in October 1988, used part of her earnings to build a model house in Mandaue City, Cebu. She also sought medical attention for her successive miscarriages in New York. In February 1992, petitioner became a resident alien. Private respondent stayed with her in the US twice and took care of her when she became pregnant. Unlike his wife, however, he had only a tourist visa and was not employed. In January 1993, the couple and their baby arrived in Cebu. After a few weeks, only Nerissa returned to the US. When Nerissa came home a few days before Ray IIs first birthday, the couple was no longer on good terms. Petitioner did not want to live near her in-laws and rely solely on her husbands meager income of P 5,000.00. She longed to be with her only child but her husband was keeping him away from her. On the other hand, Ray wanted to stay here , where he could raise his son even as he practiced his profession. Petitioner was forced to move to her parents home in Mandaue. Nerissa filed a petition for Habeas Corpus asking respondent to surrender the custody of their son to her. The court a quo issued an Order awarding custody of the one year old child to his mother, citing paragraph 2, of Art. 213 of the Family Code which provides that no child under seven years of age shall be separated from the mother, unless the Court finds compelling reasons to order otherwise. On appeal, the CA reversed the trial courts order and awarded custody of the boy to his father. Holding that granting custody to the boys father would be for the childs best interest and welfare. ISSUE: As between father and mother, who should have rightful custody of a child who bears in his person both their genes? HELD: When the parents of the child are separated, Article 213 of the Family Code is the applicable law. Since the Code does not qualify the word separation to mean legal separation decreed by a court, couples who are separated in fact, such petitioner and private respondent, are covered within its terms. The Revised Rules of Court also contains a similar provision . Rule 99, Section 6 (Adoption and Custody of Minors). The provisions of law mandate that a child under 7 years of age shall not be separated from his mother unless the court finds compelling reasons to order otherwise. The use of the word shall in Article 213 of the Family Code and Rule 99, Section 6 of the Revised Rules of Court connotes a mandatory character. The general rule that a child under 7 years of age shall not be separated from his mother finds its raison d' etre in the basic need of a child for his mothers loving care. Only the most compelling reasons shall justify the courts awarding the custody of such a child to someone other than his mother, such as her unfitness to exercise sole parental authority. In the past the following grounds have been considered ample justification to deprive a mother of custody and parental authority: neglect, abandonment, unemployment and immorality, habitual drunkenness, drug addiction, maltreatment of the child, insanity and being sick with a communicable disease. It has long been settled that in custody cases, the foremost consideration is always the welfare and best interest of the child. (Gutierrez, Alvin F.)

147) VANCIL vs. HELEN G. BELMES G.R. No. 132223 SANDOVAL-GUTIERREZ, J. FACTS: Bonifacia Vancil is the mom of Reeder C. Vancil, a US Navy serviceman who died in US in 1986. Reeder had a common-law wife, Helen Belmes, with whom he had two kids, Valerie & Vincent. Bonifacia instituted guardianship proceedings over person & properties of Valerie (6 yrs old) & Vincent (2 yrs old). Estate consists of proceeds from their dads pension benefits worth P100k. RTC Cebu appointed Bonifacia as legal & judicial guardian. Natural mother Helen opposed claiming she already filed a similar petition for guardianship. She later on filed a motion for Removal of Guardian &Appointment of New One claiming that shes the natural mom in actual custody of & exercising parental authority over children. She further asserted that Bonifacia was a resident of Colorado, USA & that shes a naturalized US citizen. Regional Trial Court rejected & denied motion.

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The Court of Appeals reversed. FC 225: parents, father or in his absence, mother are considered as natural guardian of minor children. Revised ROC Rule 93 Sec. 7 confirms designation of parents as ipso facto guardian of their minor kids w/o need of court appointment & such can only be transferred to another person for a good reason. CA found no reason why biological mom should be deprived of her legal right. Affirming RTC would abdicate & violate the very basic fundamental tenets in civil law & the constitution on family solidarity. Bonifacia claims that she should be appointed as the guardian based on the undisputed proof that Helens livein partner has raped Valerie seven times while under Helens custody. ISSUE: Whether or not Bonifacia should be appointed as the guardian HELD: No. The Court of Appeals affirmed. The case is moot. Valerie since already turned 18 on Sept. 2, 1998. Only thing in dispute is guardianship of Vincent. Art. 211 (FC): Father & mother shall jointly exercise parental authority over their common children. Fathers decision shall prevail in cases of disagreement unless theres a judicial order to the contrary. Thus, Helen, being the natural mom of Vincent has the natural & legal right to his custody. Such right is inherent & not created by state/decision of courts but derives from nature of parental relationship (Sagala-Eslao vs. CA). Art. 214 (FC) allows substitute parental authority of surviving grandparent only in case of death, absence or unsuitability of parents. Helen is very much alive & has continuously exercised parental authority over Vincent. Helens unfitness was only asserted Valerie & since shes already of major age, such cannot be appreciated anymore. Even if Helen were unfit, Bonifacia still wont qualify considering that shes a US citizen & resident. She wont be able to perform the responsibilities &obligations required of a guardian. Most probably shell just delegate those duties to another person who might not be qualified. Shes been out of the country since 1987 and considering that shes old & was previously convicted of libel, its not likely that shell come back here to fulfill her duties. Besides, only2 yrs are left for her to exercise guardianship over child. True that law does not require courts to only appoint residents as guardians but court should not appoint guardians who are not within our courts jurisdiction for it will be difficult to protect the wards in such instances. VITUG, CONCURRING: Law & jurisprudence recognizes deep ties that bind parent & child. Parents are placed 1st in rank in matters of parental authority. Childs legitimacy doesnt affect the order of priority in exercise of parental authority. FC176 states that illegitimate child shall be under parental authority of mom who should be entitled for the childs custody. (Gutierrez, Alvin F.)

148) ST. MARYS ACADEMY vs. CARPITANOS G.R. No. 143363 PARDO, J.

WILLIAM

FACTS: In February 1995, defendant-appellant St Marys Academy of Dipolog City conducted an enrollment drive for the SY 1995-96.Part of the campaign was the visitation of schools from where prospective enrollees were studying. A student of that school and part of the campaign, Sherwin Carpitanos along w/other high school students were riding in a Mitsubishi jeep driven by James Daniel II, a 15 year old student of the same school. En route to Larayan Elem School, it was alleged that minor James drove the jeep in a reckless manner and as a result the jeep turned turtle. Sherwin Carpitanos died as a result of the injuries he sustained from the accident. The Regional Trial Court held St Marys liable for indemnification for loss of Sherwins life, actual damages for burial and so-related expenses, attorneys fees and moral damages. The Court of Appeals affirmed decision but absolved from any liability the driver-minor James and jeeps owner Vivencio Villanueva. St. Marys appealed. The Court of Appeals reduced actual damages to PhP25K but affirmed the rest of its previous decision. School filed Motion for Reconsideration but was denied. Hence, this appeal. ISSUES: 1. Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in holding St. Marys liable for said death 2. Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in affirming the award of moral damages against the school HELD:1. Yes.CA held school liable under Arts 218 & 219 FC, pointing out that petitioner was negligent in allowing a minor to drive in the campaign to visit public schools to solicit enrollment. School was also liable in not having a teacher accompany the minor

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students in the jeep. However, for petitioner to be liable, it must be shown that the act or omission considered as negligent was the proximate cause of the injury caused because the negligence, must have a causal connection to the accident. But respondent-spouses Daniel and Villanueva admitted that the immediate cause of the accident was not the negligence of the school or the reckless driving of James Daniel II, but the detachment of the steering wheel guide of the jeep. This was confirmed by the testimony of the traffic investigator who instituted a report of the accident. Hence, reliance on Art 219 FC that those given the authority and responsibility under Art 218 shall be principally and solidarily liable for damages caused by acts oromissions of the unemancipated minor was unfounded. Liability, whether caused by the negligence of the minor-driver or mechanical detachment of the jeeps steering wheel guide, must be pinned on the minors parents primarily. The negligence of St Marys was only a remote cause of the accident, an event that the school had no control over. 2. Yes. Incidentally, there was no question that the registered owner of the vehicle was respondent Villanueva for he even admitted this fact. The Court has held that the registered owner of any vehicle, even if not used for public service, would primarily be responsible to the public or to 3rd persons for injuries caused the latter while the vehicle was being driven on the highways or streets. It is not the schools but the registered owned of the vehicle who shall be held responsible for damages for the death of Sherwin Carpitanos. Judgment reversed. Case remanded to TC for determination of liability of defendants excluding St Marys. (Gutierrez, Alvin F.) 149) LACSON vs. LACSON G.R. No. 150644 GARCIA, J.: FACTS: The sisters Maowee Daban Lacson and Maonaa Daban Lacson are legitimate daughters of petitioner Edward V. Lacson and his wife, Lea Daban Lacson. Maowee was born on December 4, 1974, while Maonaa, a little less than a year later. Not long after the birth of Maonaa, petitioner left the conjugal home in Molo, Iloilo City, virtually forcing mother and children to seek, apparently for financial reason, shelter somewhere else. For a month, they stayed with Leas mother-in-law, Alicia Lacson, then with her (Leas) mother and then with her brother Noel Daban. After some time, they rented an apartment only to return later to the house of Leas mother. As the trial court aptly observed, the sisters and their mother, from 1976 to 1994, or for a period of eighteen (18) years, shuttled from one dwelling place to another not their own. It appears that from the start of their estrangement, Lea did not badger her husband Edward for support, relying initially on his commitment memorialized in a note dated December 10, 1975 to give support to his daughters. As things turned out, however, Edward reneged on his promise of support, despite Leas efforts towards having him fulfill the same. Lea would admit, though, that Edward occasionally gave their children meager amounts for school expenses. Through the years and up to the middle part of 1992, Edwards mother, Alicia Lacson, also gave small amounts to help in the schooling of Maowee and Maonaa, both of whom eventually took up nursing at St. Pauls College in Iloilo City. In the early part of 1995 when Lea, in behalf of her two daughters, filed a complaint against Edward for support before the Regional Trial Court of Iloilo City, Branch 33, Maowee was about to graduate. In that complaint dated January 30, 1995, as amended, docketed as Civil Case No. 22185, Maowee and Maonaa, thru their mother, averred that their father Edward, despite being gainfully employed and owning several pieces of valuable lands, has not provided them support since 1976. They also alleged that, owing to years of Edwards failure and neglect, their mother had, from time to time, borrowed money from her brother Noel Daban. As she would later testify, Lea had received from Noel, by way of a loan, as much as P400,000.00 to P600,000.00. As applied for and after due hearing, the trial court granted the sisters Maowee and Maonaa support pendente lite at P12,000.00 per month, subject to the schedule of payment and other conditions set forth in the courts corresponding order of May 13, 1996. Following trial, the RTC rendered on June 26, 1997 judgment finding for the plaintiff sisters, as represented by their mother. In that judgment, the trial court, following an elaborate formula set forth therein, ordered their defendant father Edward to pay them a specific sum which represented 216 months, or 18 years, of support in arrears. ISSUE: Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in the grant of support in arrears from 1976 to 1994

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HELD: The Court finds no adequate reason to disturb the factual determination of the CA confirmatory of that of the trial court respecting the demand Lea made on the petitioner to secure support for the respondents. As a matter of long and sound appellate practice, factual findings of the CA are accorded respect, if not finality, save for the most compelling and cogent reasons. Not one of the wellrecognized exceptions to this rule on conclusiveness of factual findings appear to obtain in this case. Accordingly, the Court cannot grant the petitioners plea for a review of the CAs findings bearing on the actuality that, as basis for an award of support in arrears, an extrajudicial demand for support had been made on the petitioner as evidenced by the December 10, 1975 note adverted to. Lest it be overlooked, the jurisdiction of the Court in a petition for review, as here, is generally limited to correction of errors of law. Complementing that postulate is the rule that the Court is not bound to analyze and weigh all over again the evidence already considered in the proceedings below, except when, as earlier indicated, compelling reasons demand a review of the factual conclusions drawn from such evidence. (Gutierrez, Alvin F.)

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CASES IN PROERTY 150) LEUNG YEE, plaintiff-appellant, vs. FRANK L. STRONG MACHINERY COMPANY and J. G. WILLIAMSON, defendants-appellees G.R. No. L-11658 CARSON, J. FACTS: The "Compaia Agricola Filipina" bought ricecleaning machinery from the machinery company, and executed a chattel mortgage thereon to secure payment of the purchase price. It included in the mortgage deed the building of strong materials in which the machinery was installed, without any reference to the land on which it stood. The indebtedness secured by this instrument not having been paid when it fell due, the mortgaged property was sold by the sheriff, in pursuance of the terms of the mortgage instrument, and was bought in by the machinery company. The mortgage was registered in the chattel mortgage registry, and the sale of the property to the machinery company in satisfaction of the mortgage was annotated in the same registry on 29 December 1913. On 14 January 1914, the "Compaia Agricola Filipina" executed a deed of sale of the land upon which the building stood to the machinery company, but this deed of sale, although executed in a public document, was not registered and made no reference to the building erected on the land and would appear to have been executed for the purpose of curing any defects which might be found to exist in the machinery company's title to the building under the sheriff's certificate of sale. The machinery company went into possession of the building at or about the time when this sale took place, that is to say, the month of December 1913, and it has continued in possession ever since. At or about the time when the chattel mortgage was executed in favor of the machinery company, the "Compaia Agricola Filipina" executed another mortgage to Leung Yee upon the building, separate and apart from the land on which it stood, to secure payment of the balance of its indebtedness to Leung Yee under a contract for the construction of the building. Upon the failure of the mortgagor to pay the amount of the indebtedness secured by the mortgage, Leung Yee secured judgment for that amount, levied execution upon the building, bought it in at the sheriff's sale on or about the 18 December 1914, and had the sheriff's certificate of sale duly registered in the land registry of the Province of Cavite. At the time when the execution was levied upon the building, the machinery company, which was in possession, filed with the sheriff a sworn statement setting up its claim of title and demanding the release of the property from the levy. The Court gave judgment in favor of the machinery company, relying upon Article 1473 and the fact that the company had its title to the building registered prior to the date of the registry of plaintiffs certificate. Hence, the appeal. ISSUE: Whether or not the plaintiff to recover possession of the building from the machinery company HELD: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment with costs against the appellant. Building separate from land does not affect character as real property; Registry of chattel mortgage does not affect character of the building and the machineries installed therein . The Chattel Mortgage Law contemplates and makes provision for mortgages of personal property; and the sole purpose and object of the chattel mortgage registry is to provide for the registry of "Chattel mortgages," mortgages of personal property executed in the manner and form prescribed in the statute. The building of strong materials in which the machinery was installed was real property, and the mere fact that the parties seem to have dealt with it separate and apart from the land on which it stood in no wise changed its character as real property. It follows that neither the original registry in the chattel mortgage registry of the instrument purporting to be a chattel mortgage of the building and the machinery installed therein, nor the annotation in that registry of the sale of the mortgaged property, had any effect whatever so far as the building was concerned. Possession before sheriffs sale, not Article 1473 (on good faith), controlling as to ownership of property. The ruling cannot be sustained on the ground of Article 1473, second paragraph, but on the ground that the agreed statement of facts discloses that neither the purchase of the building by plaintiff nor his inscription of the sheriff's certificate of sale in his favor was made in good faith, and that the machinery company must be held to be the owner of the property under the third paragraph of the above cited article of the code, it appearing that the company first took possession of the property; and further, that the building and the land were sold to the machinery company long prior to the date of the sheriff's sale to the plaintiff. (Gutierrez, Alvin F.)

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CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
151) DEVELOPMENT BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, MYLO O. QUINTO and JESUSA CHRISTINE S. CHUPUICO, respondent. G.R. No. 109946 BELLOSILLO, J. FACTS: Development Bank of the Philippines filed this petition for review on certiorari assailing the decision of the Court of Appeals holding that the mortgages in favor of the bank were void and ineffectual because when constituted the mortgagors, who were merely applicants for free patent of the property mortgaged, were not the owners thereof in fee simple and therefore could not validly encumber the same. Petitioner granted a loan of P94,000.00 to the spouses Santiago Olidiana and Oliva Olidiana. To secure the loan the Olidiana spouses executed a real estate mortgage on several properties. At the time of the mortgage the property was still the subject of a Free Patent application filed by the Olidianas with the Bureau of Lands but registered under their name in the Office of the Municipal Assessor of Molave for taxation purposes.The Olidiana spouses filed with the Bureau of Lands a Request for Amendment of their Free Patent applications over several parcels of land including Lot No. 2029 (PIs-61). In this request they renounced, relinquished and waived all their rights and interests over Lot No. 2029 (Pls-61) in favor of Jesusa Christine Chupuico and Mylo O. Quinto, respondents herein. This second mortgage also included Lot No. 2029 (Pls-61) as security for the Olidiana spouses financial obligation with petitioner. Thereafter, for failure of Santiago and Oliva Olidiana to comply with the terms and conditions of their promissory notes and mortgage contracts, petitioner extrajudicially foreclosed all their mortgaged properties. However, when petitioner tried to register the sale and the affidavit of consolidation and to have the tax declaration transferred in its name it was discovered that Lot No. 2029 had already been divided and covered in the name of Jesusa Christine Chupuico, while the other half known as Lot 2029-B was covered by the same in the name of Mylo 0. Quinto. Since there was no showing that the sales application was approved before the property was mortgaged, the trial court concluded that the Olidiana spouses were not yet its owners in fee simple when they mortgaged the property. The lower court also said that with the subsequent issuance of the Free Patent by the Bureau of Lands for the respondents. Therefore petitioner could not have acquired a valid title over the subject property by virtue of the foreclosure and subsequent sale at public auction. Resultantly, the trial court declared the following as null and void. Petitioner then appealed to the Court of Appeals which likewise ruled in favor of respondents, hence the instant petition. ISSUE: Whether the land in dispute could have been validly mortgaged while still the subject of a Free Patent Application with the government

HELD: Petitioner bank did not acquire valid title over the land in dispute because it was public land when mortgaged to the bank. The Court cannot accept petitioners contention that the lot in dispute was no longer public land when mortgaged to it since the Olidiana spouses had been in open, continuous, adverse and public possession thereof for more than thirty (30) years. Meanwhile the government still remained the owner thereof, as in fact the application could still be canceled and the land awarded to another applicant should it be shown that the legal requirements had not been complied with. What divests the government of title to the land is the issuance of the sales patent and its subsequent registration with the Register of Deeds. It is the registration and issuance of the certificate of title that segregate public lands from the mass of public domain and convert it into private property. Since the disputed lot in the case before us was still the subject of a Free Patent Application when mortgaged to petitioner and no patent was granted to the Olidiana spouses. Thus, since the disputed property was not owned by the Olidiana spouses when they mortgaged it to petitioner, the contracts of mortgage and all their subsequent legal consequences as regards the subject lot are null and void. It is essential requisite for the validity of a mortgage that the mortgagor be the absolute owner of a property mortgaged, and it appearing that the mortgage was constituted before the issuance of the patent to the mortgagor, the mortgage in question must of necessity be void and ineffective. For the law explicitly requires an imperative for the validity of a mortgage that the mortgagor be the absolute owner of what is mortgaged. (Gutierrez, Alvin F.)

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CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
152) ATOK-BIG WEDGE MINING COMPANY, INC., petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, and LIWAN CONSI, respondents. G.R. No. 88883 PARAS, J. FACTS: Fredia Mineral claim of about nine (9) hectares situated in Tuding, Itogon, Benguet, was located sometime between December 25, 1930 and December 31, 1930, a period of six (6) days, by A.I. Reynolds in accordance with the provisions of the Act of Congress of July 1, 1902, better known as the Philippine Bill of 1902, in a so-called Declaration of Location. The said Declaration of Location of mineral claim was duly recorded in the Office of the Mining Recorder sometime on January 2, 1931. Fredia mineral claim, together with other mineral claims, was sold by A.I. Reynolds to Big Wedge Mining Company, the earlier corporate name of Atok Big Wedge Mining Company, Inc. in a Deed of Sale executed on November 2, 1931. Since then petitioner Atok has been in continuous and exclusive ownership and possession of said claim up to the present. Atok has paid the realty taxes and occupation fees for the Fredia mineral claim. The Fredia mineral claim together with other mineral claims owned by Atok has been declared under Tax Declaration No. 9535 and that in view of Presidential Decree No. 1214 an application for lease was filed by Atok covering the Fredia mineral claim. On the other hand, private respondent Liwan Consi has a lot below the land of a certain Mr. Acay at Tuding Slide, Itogon, Benguet. He constructed a house thereon sometime in 1964. The lot is covered by Tax Declaration No. 9462. When he first constructed his house below the lot of Mr. Acay he was told that it was not necessary for him to obtain a building permit as it was only a nipa hut. And no one prohibited him from entering the land so he was constructing a house thereon. It was only in January 1984 when private respondent Consi repaired the said house that people came to take pictures and told him that the lot belongs to Atok. Private respondent Consi has been paying taxes on said land which his father before him had occupied. On January 1984, the security guards of Atok informed Feliciano Reyes, Security Officer of Atok, that a construction was being undertaken at the area of the Fredia mineral claim by private respondent Liwan Consi. Feliciano Reyes instructed the cashier to go and take pictures of the construction. Feliciano Reyes himself and other security guards went to the place of the construction to verify and then to the police to report the matter. On March 1, 1984, Atok filed a complaint for forcible entry and detainer against Liwan Consi. On January 29, 1987, after due hearing, the Municipal Trial Court of Itogon. This case against Liwan Consi is hereby ordered dismissed. Petitioner ATOK appealed the decision to the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Baguio and Benguet. the Court of Appeals denied the motion for reconsideration filed by petitioner ATOK. Hence, the petition. ISSUE: Whether or not an individual's long term occupation of land of the public domain vests him with such rights over the same as to defeat the rights of the owner of that claim HELD: It is of no importance whether Benguet and Atok had secured a patent for as held in the Gold Creek Mining Corporation case, for all physical purposes of ownership, the owner is not required to secure a patent as long as he complies with the provisions of the mining laws; his possessory right, for all practical purposes of ownership, is as good as though secured by patent. In the case at bar, the evidence on record pointed that the petitioner Atok has faithfully complied with all the requirements of the law regarding the maintenance of the said Fredia Mineral Claim. The perfection of the mining claim converted the property to mineral land and under the laws then in force removed it from the public domain. By such act, the locators acquired exclusive rights over the land, against even the government, without need of any further act such as the purchase of the land or the obtention of a patent over it. As the land had become the private property of the locators, they had the right to transfer the same, as they did, to Benguet and Atok. With this ruling enunciated by the Court, it can further be declared and held that petitioner Atok has the exclusive right to the property in question. (Gutierrez, Alvin F.) 153) Republic vs. De Guzman, et.al. 326 SCRA 574 FACTS: Conflicting applications for confirmation of imperfect title was filed by Norma Almanzor against respondents over lands located in Silang, Cavite. It is undisputed that the lands were released as agricultural land on 1965 and that the Petition for

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
Confirmation of Imperfect Title was filed by the respondents on 1991. The trial court ruled in favor of the respondents. The trial court ruled in favor of the petitioner. The CA affirmed such ruling. ISSUE: Whether or not the respondents have overthrown the presumption that the lands are part of the public domain? HELD: The petition for confirmation of imperfect title was filed four (4) years short of the required thirty (30) year period possession requirement under PD 29 and RA 6940. The respondents period of occupancy over the subject land 26 years at the time of the filing of the petition, four (4) years short of the required 30-year period possession requirement under the law. Prior to its declaration as alienable land in 1965, any occupation or possession thereon cannot be considered in the counting of the 30-year possession requirement. The rules on the confirmation of imperfect titles do not apply unless and until the land classified as forest land is released in an official proclamation to that effect so that it may form part of the disposable agricultural lands of the public domain. 154) Isaguirre vs. De Lara 332 SCRA 803 FACTS: Alejandro De Lara was the original applicant-claimant for Miscellaneous Sales Application on 1942. He was succeeded by his wife, respondent Felicitas De Lara upon his death. On said land stood a 2-story commercial and residential apartment in the name of private respondents sons. Sometime on 1960, a Deed of Sale and Special Cessation of Rights and Interests was executed in favor of the petitioner, Cornelio. Subsequently, an OCT was executed in his name. Meanwhile, an OCT was issued to the respondent anent the sales application. The CA reversed the same. It ruled that the transaction that was entered into was an equitable mortgage and not a sale thus, the petitioners OCT is void. Respondents motion for execution was granted by the trial court and was affirmed by the CA. ISSUE: Whether or not the petitioner is entitled to retain possession of the property until payment of the loan and the value of the necessary and useful improvements made upon such property. HELD: As the sole owner, the respondent has the right to enjoy her property without any other limitations than those established by law. As a general rule, the mortgagor retains possession of the mortgaged property. A mortgage is merely a lien. Possession is an essential attribute of ownership. It would be redundant for the respondent to go back to court to establish her right to possess the property. 155) Geminiano et. al. vs. CA 259 SCRA 344 FACTS: The subject lot was originally owned by petitioners mother Paulina. An unfinished bungalow was constructed on the lot by the petitioners. The said bungalow was sold by petitioners to respondent in 1978. Meanwhile, a contract of lease over the lot was earlier entered into by the petitioners mother in favor of the respondents for a period of 7 years. Petitioners, after having the lot registered in their names, filed a case for unlawful detainer and damages against the respondents. The lower court ruled in favor of the respondents. On appeal, the RTC reversed the same and ordered the Petitioner then filed an action for Quieting of Title and Damages against herein respondent.

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
petitioners to reimburse the respondents for the value of the house and the improvements. The CA affirmed the RTC. ISSUE: Whether or not the respondents were builders in good faith or mere lessees. HELD: Being mere lessees, the respondents knew that their occupation of the premises would continue only for the life of the lease. Thus, they cannot be considered as possessors or builders in good faith. Article 448 of the Civil Code in relation to Article 546 of the Civil Code applies only to possessors in good faith. It does not apply where ones only interest is that of a lessee under a rental contract; otherwise, it would always be in the power of the tenant to improve his landlord out of his property. 156) Tecnogas vs. CA G.R. No. 108894, February 10, 1997 FACTS: Plaintiff is a domestic corporation and a registered owner of the subject land located in San Dionisio, Paranaque. It purchased the subject land from Pariz Industries, Inc. in 1970 with the buildings, improvements and the wall existing thereon. Dedendant Eduardo Uy was the registered owner of the land adjoining petitioners land. Tecnogas offered to buy from Uy the portion of the latters land occupied by the portion of its buildings and wall. Uy refused. ISSUE: Whether or not the plaintiff is considered a builder in bad faith because he is presumed to know the metes and bounds of his property as described in the Certificate of Title. HELD: The plaintiff purchased the land with the structures already in existence. Article 527, Civil Code presumes good faith since no proof exists to show that the encroachment over a narrow, needle-shaped portion of the respondents land was done in bad faith by the builder of the encroaching structures. It is presumed that possession continues to be enjoyed in the same character in which it was acquired, until the contrary is proved. Thus, plaintiff is deemed to have stepped into the shoes of the seller in regard to all rights of ownership over the land sold, including the right to compel the defendant to exercise either of the options under Art. 448, Civil Code. Plaintiff must also pay rent for the property occupied by its building but only up to the date the respondent serves notice of its option upon plaintiff and the trial court if such option is for the respondent to appropriate the encroaching structure. 157) Pleasantville Dvt. Corp. vs. CA 253 SCRA 10 FACTS: Robillo purchased from petitioner Lot 9 in Pleasantville Subdivision, Bacolod City. In 1975, respondent Jardinico bought the rights from Robillo. At that time, Lot 9 was vacant. Meanwhile, on 1974, respondent Wilson Kee bought on installment Lot 8 of said subdivision from CTTEI (exclusive real agent of petitioner). Said agent, through one of its employees, accompanied Kees wife to inspect lot 8. Unfortunately, the parcel of land pointed to was Lot 9. Kee then constructed improvements on said property. Jardinico then filed an ejectment case against Kee. ISSUE: Whether or not a lot buyer who constructs improvements on the wrong property erroneously delivered by the owners agent, a builder in good faith? HELD: Kee was in good faith. At the time he built improvements of Lot 9, Kee believed that said lot was what he bought from petitioner. The rights of Kee and Jardinico vis--vis each other, as builder in good faith and owner in good faith respectively are regulated by law (448, 546, 548, Civil Code).

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
158) Benitez vs. CA 266 SCRA 242 FACTS: Sometime on 1986, petitioners purchased a lot from Cavite Development Bank. Subsequently, the respondents bought the same. Respondents then bought another property adjacent to that of petitioners land. Thereafter, the former then filed a case against the latter for ejectment upon discovery of the former that the latters house encroached on the formers land. MeTC ruled in favor of the respondents. The RTC and CA affirmed the same. ISSUE: Whether or not possession of a lot encroached upon by a part of anothers house be recovered in an action for ejectment. HELD: Yes, within 1 year from last demand. That petitioners occupied the land prior to respondents purchase thereof does not negate the latters case for ejectment. Prior physical possession is not required. Possession can be acquired by material occupation, by the fact that a thing is subject to the action of ones will or by the proper acts and legal formalities established for acquiring such right. 159) Evadel Realty vs. Soriano April 20, 2001 FACTS: Respondent-spouses as sellers, entered into a Contract to Sell with petitioner as buyer over a parcel of land which is part of a huge tract of land known as the Imus Estate. Upon payment of the first installment, the petitioners introduced improvements thereon and fenced off the property with concrete walls. Thereafter, the respondents discovered that the area fenced off by the petitioners exceeded the area subject of the contract by 2,450 square meters. 160) NAZARENO et al. vs. COURT OF APPEALS 257 SCRA 589 FACTS: A parcel of land is situated in Telegrapo, Puntod, Cagayan de Oro City. It was formed as a result of sawdust dumped into the dried-up Balacanas Creek and along the banks of the Cagayan river by Sun Valley Lumber Co. Private respondents Jose Salasanan and Reo Rabaya leased the subject lots on which their houses stood from Petitioner Antonio Nazareno. For refusal to pay rentals, respondents were ejected. Antonio Nazareno caused the approval by the Bureau of Lands of the survey plan to perfect his title over the accretion area being claimed by him. However, it was protested by private respondents. The petitioners claim that the subject land is private land being an accretion to his titled property, applying Article 457 of the Civil Code. ISSUE: Whether or not Article 457 of The Civil Code applies. HELD: No. The following requites should all concur in order for accretion to apply as a mode of acquiring property under Article 457 of the Civil Code: (1) that Moreover petitioner, as a real estate developer is presumed to be experienced in business and ought to have sufficient technical expertise to correctly determine the metes and bounds of the land it acquires. A complaint for accion reinvindicatoria was filed by respondents against petitioner. The trial court, by way of a summary judgment, ruled in favor of respondents. ISSUE: Whether or not the issue regarding petitioners good faith or bad faith as a builder should have been peremptorily disposed of by the trial court. HELD: The petitioner admitted in its Amended Answer that the lot in dispute is covered by the TCT of respondents. With this admission, petitioner can no longer claim that it was a builder in good faith.

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
the deposition of soil or sediment be gradual and imperceptible; (2) that it be the result of the action of the waters of the river (or sea); and (3) that the land where accretion takes place is adjacent to the banks of rivers (or the sea coast). Petitioners admit that the accretion was formed by the dumping of boulders, soil and other filling materials on portions of the Balacanas Creek and the Cagayan River bounding their land. It cannot be claimed, therefore, that the accumulation of such boulders, soil and other filling materials was gradual and imperceptible, resulting from the action of the waters or the current of the Balacanas Creek and the Cagayan River. Absence of the first and second requisites, they cannot claim the rights of a riparian owner. Article 457 excludes all deposits caused by human intervention. Alluvion must be the exclusive work of nature. When a land was not formed solely by the natural effect of the water current of the river bordering said land but as a consequence of the direct and deliberate intervention of man, it manmade accretion and, as such, part of the public domain. 161) NAVARRO vs. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT AND HEIRS OF SINFOROSO PASCUAL G.R. No. 68166. February 12, 1997 FACTS: Petitioners' predecessor-in-interest, Emiliano Navarro, filed a fishpond application with the Bureau of Fisheries covering twenty five (25) hectares of foreshore land in Sibocon, Balanga, Bataan. The Director of Fisheries, gave due course to his application but only to the extent of seven (7) hectares of the property as may be certified by the Bureau of Forestry as suitable for fishpond purposes. Sometime in the early part of 1960, Sinforoso Pascual filed an application to register and confirm his title to a parcel of land, situated in Sibocon, Balanga, Bataan. Pascual claimed that this land is an accretion to his property, situated in Barrio Puerto Rivas, Balanga, Bataan. Sinforoso Pascual claimed the accretion as the riparian owner. Emiliano Navarro filed an opposition to Pascual's application. Navarro claimed that the land sought to be registered has always been part of the public domain, it being a part of the foreshore of Manila Bay. He was a lessee and in possession of a part of the subject property by virtue of a fishpond permit issued by the Bureau of Fisheries and confirmed by the Office of the President and also that he had already converted the area covered by the lease into a fishpond. ISSUE: Is land be considered as foreshore land? HELD: Yes. The third requisite of accretion is absent in the case at bar. It states that alluvium must be deposited on the portion of claimant's land which is adjacent to the river bank. Here private respondents' own land lies between the Talisay and Bulacan Rivers; in front of their land on the northern side lies the disputed land where before 1948, there lay the Manila Bay. If the accretion were to be attributed to the action of either or both of the Talisay and Bulacan Rivers, the alluvium should have been deposited on either or both of the eastern and western boundaries of private respondents' own tract of land, not on the northern portion thereof which is adjacent to the Manila Bay. The disputed land is an accretion not on a river bank but on a sea bank, or on what used to be the foreshore of Manila Bay which adjoined private respondents own tract of land on the northern side. Hence, the land which is adjacent to the property belonging to Pascual cannot be considered an accretion caused by the action of the two rivers. 162) ROBLES et al vs. CA 328 SCRA 97 FACTS: Leon Robles primitively owned a land which he occupied the same openly and adversely as early as 1916 and paid its taxes. When Leon died his son Silvino Robles inherited land, took possession and paid taxes. Upon Silvinos death, his widow Maria de la Cruz and his children inherited the property, took adverse possession and paid taxes. However, the task of cultivating the land was assigned to Lucio Robles. Plaintiffs entrusted the payment of the land taxes to their co-heir and half-brother, Hilario Robles. In 1962, the tax declaration in Silvinos name was canceled and transferred Hilario Robles and his wife. In 1966, Andrea Robles secured a loan from the

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
Cardona Rural Bank, Inc., using the tax declaration as security. When the mortgage debt was unpaid, it was auctioned for sale and Rural Bank was the highest bidder. Consequently the spouses Robles failed to redeem property. Thus, title was transferred in the name of Rural Bank. Then Rural Bank sold the same to the Spouses Vergel Santos and Ruth Santos. In 1987, plaintiff discovered the mortgage and attempted to redeem the property, but was unsuccessful. The spouses Santos also took possession of the property and secured a free patent in their names. Hence a petition for quieting of title to the land was filed. ISSUE: Will the petition prosper? HELD: Yes. Hilario mortgaged the disputed property to the Rural Bank of Cardona in his capacity as a mere coowner thereof. The said transaction did not divest the plaintiff of title to the property at the time of the institution of the complaint for quieting of title. An action to quiet title is a remedy for the removal of any cloud or doubt or uncertainty on the title to real property. It is essential for the plaintiff or complainant to have a legal or an equitable title to or interest in the real property which is the subject matter of the action. Also, the deed, claim, encumbrance or proceeding that is being alleged as a cloud on plaintiffs title must be shown to be in fact invalid or inoperative despite its prima facie appearance of validity or legal efficacy. Also, there is an irregularity when the tax declaration of Silvino was cancelled since there was no instrument or deed of conveyance evidencing its transfer to Hilario Robles. 163) De Aviles vs. CA 264 SCRA 473 FACTS: Eduardo Aviles was in actual possession of the afore-described property since 1957. In fact he mortgaged the same with the Rural Bank and Philippine National Bank. When the property was inspected by a bank representative, Eduardo Aviles, in the presence of the boundary owners, namely, defendant Camilo Aviles, Anastacio Aviles and Juana and Apolonio Joaquin, pointed to the inspector the existing earthen dikes as the boundary limits of the property and nobody objected. When the real estate mortgage was foreclosed, the property was sold at public auction but this was redeemed by plaintiffs' mother and the land was subsequently transferred and declared in her name. On March 23, 1983, defendant Camilo Aviles asserted a color of title over the northern portion of the property with an area of approximately 1,200 square meters by constructing a bamboo fence (thereon) and moving the earthen dikes, thereby molesting and disturbing the peaceful possession of the plaintiffs over said portion. ISSUE: Will the remedy of quieting of title apply for settling a boundary dispute? HELD: No. Quieting of title is a common law remedy for the removal of any cloud upon or doubt or uncertainty with respect to title to real property. To avail of the remedy of quieting of title, a plaintiff must show that there is an instrument, record, claim, encumbrance or proceeding which constitutes or casts a cloud, doubt, question or shadow upon the owner's title to or interest in real property. However, the Agreement of Partition executed by private respondent and his brothers (including the petitioners' father and predecessor-in-interest), in which their respective shares in the inherited property were agreed upon, and the Deed of Sale evidencing the redemption by petitioner Anastacia Vda. de Aviles of the subject property in a foreclosure sale are in no way documents that constitute a cloud or cast a doubt upon the title of petitioners. In fact, the uncertainty arises from the parties' failure to situate and fix the boundary between their respective properties. The construction of the bamboo fence enclosing the disputed property and the moving of earthen dikes are not the "clouds" or "doubts" which can be removed in an action for quieting of title. An action to quiet title or to remove cloud may not be brought for the purpose of settling a boundary dispute.

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Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
164) DEL CAMPO vs. CA 351 SCRA 1 FACTS: Salome, Consorcia, Alfredo, Maria, Rosalia, Jose, Quirico and Julita, all surnamed Bornales, were the original co-owners of 27, 170 sq. m. lot known as Lot 162 under OCT No. 18047. The lot was divided in aliquot shares among the eight co-owners. Salome sold part of her 4/16 share in Lot 162 to Soledad Daynolo. Thereafter, Soledad Daynolo immediately took possession of the land and built a house thereon. A few years later, Soledad and her husband, Simplicio Distajo, mortgaged the subject portion of Lot 162 as security for a debt to Jose Regalado, Sr. Then three of the eight co-owners of Lot 162, specifically, Salome, Consorcia and Alfredo, sold 24,993 square meters of said lot to Jose Regalado, Sr. Simplicio Distajo, heir of Soledad Daynolo who had since died, paid the mortgage debt and redeemed the mortgaged portion of Lot 162 from Jose Regalado, Sr. The latter, in turn, executed a Deed of Discharge of Mortgage in favor of Soledad's heirs, namely: Simplicio Distajo, Rafael Distajo and Teresita Distajo-Regalado. On same date, the said heirs sold the redeemed portion of Lot 162 for P1,500.00 to herein petitioners, the spouses Manuel Del Campo and Salvacion Quiachon. ISSUE: Is the sale by a co-owner of a physical portion of an undivided property held in common be valid? HELD: Yes. Salome's right to sell part of her undivided interest in the co-owned property is absolute in accordance with the well-settled doctrine that a coowner has full ownership of his pro-indiviso share and has the right to alienate, assign or mortgage it, and substitute another person in its enjoyment. Since Salome's clear intention was to sell merely part of her aliquot share in Lot 162, in our view no valid objection can be made against it and the sale can be given effect to the full extent. Even if a co-owner sells the whole property as his, the sale will affect only his own share but not those of the other co-owners who did not consent to the sale. Since a co-owner is entitled to sell his undivided share, a sale of the entire property by one co-owner will only transfer the rights of said coowner to the buyer, thereby making the buyer a coowner of the property. In this case, Regalado merely became a new coowner of Lot 162 to the extent of the shares which Salome, Consorcia and Alfredo could validly convey. Soledad retained her rights as co-owner and could validly transfer her share to petitioners in 1951. The logical effect of the second disposition is to substitute petitioners in the rights of Soledad as coowner of the land. Needless to say, these rights are preserved notwithstanding the issuance of TCT No. 14566 in Regalado's name in 1977. 165) Rodil Enterprises vs. CA G.R. No. 129609; November 29, 2001 FACTS: Petitioner Rodil Enterprises Inc. is the lessee of the Ides O'Racca Building since 1959. It was a "former alien property" over which the Republic of the Philippines acquired ownership by virtue of RA 477. In 1972, the lease contract between RODIL and the REPUBLIC was renewed for another 15 years. In 1980, RODIL entered into a sublease contract with respondents Carmen Bondoc, et al. members of the Ides O'Racca Building Tenants Association Inc. (ASSOCIATION). In 1982, authorization of the sale of "former alien properties" classified as commercial and industrial, and the O'RACCA building was classified as commercial property. In 1987,RODIL offered to purchase the subject property. In 1997, ASSOCIATION also offered to lease the same building. In May 18, 1992, RODIL signed a renewal contract which would extend the lease for 10 years from 1 September 1987. A supplement to the renewal contract was subsequently entered into on May 25, 1992 where rentals on the previous lease contract were increased. In September 1992: spouses Saturnino Alvarez and Epifania Alvarez, sublessees of RODIL, filed with the Office of the President a letter-appeal assailing the authority of Factoran to enter into the renewal contract of May 18, 1992 with RODIL, and claiming the right to purchase the subject property. ASSOCIATION instituted another Civil Case praying for the setting aside of the renewal contract of 18 May 1992 as well as the supplementary contract of May 25, 1992. Finally in 1993, RODIL filed an action for unlawful detainer against Divisoria Footwear (private respondents) and a similar action against Chua Huay Soon (also private respondents).

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The lower court dismissed the action filed by the ASSOCIATION. The Office of the President then denied the letter-appeal of the spouses Alvarez but nullified the renewal contract of 18 May 1992 and the supplementary contract of 25 May 1992. Metropolitan Trial Court of Manila upheld RODIL's right to eject respondents Bondoc, Bondoc-Esto, Divisoria Footwear and Chua Huay Soon. The RTC affirmed MTC decision. However the appellate court declared the renewal contract between RODIL and the REPUBLIC null and void. ISSUE: Whether or not the Republic being the owner has freedom to dispose of a thing. HELD: Yes. The owner has the right to enjoy and dispose of a thing, without other limitations than those established by law. Every owner has the freedom of disposition over his property. It is an attribute of ownership, and this rule has no exception. The REPUBLIC being the owner of the disputed property enjoys the prerogative to enter into a lease contract with RODIL in the exercise of its jus disponendi. Hence, as lessor, the REPUBLIC has the right to eject usurpers of the leased property where the factual elements required for relief in an action for unlawful detainer are present. The contracts of 18 May 1992 and 25 May 1992 are valid. CA invalidated the contracts because they were supposedly executed in violation of a temporary restraining order issued by the RTC. CA however failed to note that the order restrains the REPUBLIC from awarding the lease contract only as regards respondent ASSOCIATION but not petitioner RODIL. In an action for unlawful detainer the plaintiff need not have been in prior physical possession. Respondents have admitted that they have not entered into any lease contract with the REPUBLIC and that their continued occupation of the subject property was merely by virtue of acquiescence. The records clearly show this to be the case. The REPUBLIC merely issued a "temporary occupancy permit" which was not even in the name of the respondents Bondoc, Bondoc-Esto, Divisoria Footwear or Chua but of respondent ASSOCIATION. Since the occupation of respondents was merely tolerated by the REPUBLIC, the right of possession of the latter remained uninterrupted . It could therefore alienate the same to anyone it chose. Unfortunately for respondents, the REPUBLIC chose to alienate the subject premises to RODIL by virtue of a contract of lease entered into on 18 May 1992. Resultantly, petitioner had the right to file the action for unlawful detainer against respondents as one from whom possession of property has been unlawfully withheld. 166) Heirs of Roman Soriano V. CA G.R. No. 128177; August 15, 2001 FACTS: The land in question was originally owned by Adriano Soriano, upon his death, it passed on to his heirs who leased the same to the spouse De Vera for a period of 15 years. Roman Soriano as one of the children of Adriano Soriano, acts as the caretaker. The property was subdivided into two lots, lot 1 was sold to respondent spouses Abalos. As a co-owner of lot 2, Roman ownes , the of which was also sold to the spouses Abalos. He was ousted as caretaker of the land. Roman Soriano filed a case for reinstatement and reliquidation. The agrarian court authorized the ejectment, but on appeal the CA reversed. Subsequently the parties entered into an agreement allowing Roman to sublease the property. The spouses Abalos filed an application for registration of the title of lot 1 and the of lot 2, which was granted. The petitioner filed with DARAB for Security of Tenure with prayer for preliminary injunction. The lower court ruled that the spouses Abalos are the real owner of the land. They filed an application for the writ of execution of the decision, and to oust Roman Soriano and the sub-lessee. However there was a pending case with DARAB. ISSUE: Whether or not the winning party in the land registration case can effectively oust the possessor whose security of tenure rights are still pending with DARAB. HELD: No. The prevailing party in land registration case cannot be placed in possession of the area while it is occupied by the one claiming to be an agricultural tenant, pending declaration that the latters occupation was lawful. Judgement of ownership

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does not include possession as a necessary incident. Possession and ownership are distinct legal concepts. There is ownership when a thing pertaining to one person is completely subjected to his will in a manner not prohibited by law and consistent with the right of others. Ownership confers certain rights to the owner, among which are the rights to enjoy the thing owned and the right to exclude other person from possession. While possession is the holding of the thing or enjoyment of a right. A person may be declared owner but may not be entitled to possession. It may be in the hand if another as a lessee or a tenant. 167) SERASPI vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. 135602 April 28, 2000 FACTS: The lots in question were originally owned by Marcelino Recasa and are both situated in Barangay Lapnag, Banga, Aklan. When Marcelino died in 1943, and in 1948 his intestate estate was partitioned into three parts to his corresponding heirs in his Three (3) marriages during his lifetime. In the same year, Patronicio Recasa (the representing the heirs first marriage) sold their share to Dominador Recasa (representing heirs in the second marriage). In 1950, Dominador sold their share to Quirico and Purificacion Seraspi. In 1958, the Seraspis acquired a loan from Kalibo Rural Bank, Inc. (KRBI) the subject land being the security, however, they failed to pay the loan and the property was foreclosed and sold to the highest bidder KRBI, and subsequently sold the same to Manuel Rata (brother-in-law of Quirico Seraspi) who allowed Quirico to administer the same. In 1974, private respondent Simeon Recasa (Marcelinos heir by his third marriage) took advantage of the fact that Quirico was paralyzed due to a stroke, forcibly entered the lands in question and took possession thereof. In 1983 the Seraspis were able to purchase the lands from Manuel Rata and thereafter filed a case against Simeon Recasa for recovery of possession of the lands. RTC ruled in favor of Seraspi, but CA reversed on appeal. ISSUE: Whether the there was prescription in favor of Simeon Recasa? acquisitive HELD: No, there was no acquisitive prescription Acquisitive prescription of dominion and other real rights may be ordinary or extraordinary. In the case at bar, respondent claim ordinary prescription through adverse possession of the property for more than Ten (10) years under Art. 1134 of the Civil Code. However, for purposes of prescription, respondent was not able to prove his just title or good faith required by acquisitive prescription, as he did not acquire possession of the property through the modes recognized by the Civil Code for acquisition of ownership or other real rights, namely: 1. Occupation 2. Intellectual creation 3. Law 4. Donation 5. Succession 6. Tradition in consequence of certain contracts 7. Prescription Also, under Article 714, the ownership of a piece of land cannot be acquired by occupation, nor can respondent claim that he acquired his right through succession because he was an heir to the original owner, remember that the property was validly partitioned and the subject lots are not part of those which he inherited, and lastly, he cannot be considered in good faith as he entered the property without the knowledge and permission of the original owner, thus making him a mere usurper. When the property belonging to another is unlawfully taken by another, the former has the right of action against the latter fir the recovery of the property and such right may be transferred by the sale or assignment of the property and the transferee can maintain such action against the wrongdoer. *1974-1983 in only 9 years. 168) CATAPUSAN vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. 109262 November 21, 1996 FACTS: Bonifacio Catapusan was first married to Narcissa Tanjuatco, the only surviving heir of Dominga Piguing, their (4) children are the private respondent in the case at bar. Narcissa died in 1910, Bonifacio got married for the second time, and the children in the second marriage are the petitioners in this case. Bonifacio died in 1940. Thereafter in 1974, petitioners filed an action for partition of the lot in

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question located in Wawa, Tanay, Rizal. Petitioners claim that the Wawa Lot is the property of their father (Bonifacio) therefore it is co-owned by the heirs of the first and the second marriage. As proof of their claim, they have presented tax declarations of the four (4) adjacent land owners stating in such document that the owner of the subject lot is Bonifacio Catapusan. Witnesses were also presented and testified that they saw Bonifacio working on the lot. Respondent on the other hand, argues that the Wawa lot was originally owned by Dominga Piguing and inherited by Narcissa Tanjuatco as her paraphernal property; hence petitioners have no right over the lot. As evidence, theyve presented tax declarations in their names and also alleged that they have been in open, continuous and uninterrupted possession of the said lot for more than 50 years. The RTC ruled in favor of respondents declaring them as owner of the property, and such decision was affirmed by the Court of Appeals except for Attorneys fees. ISSUE: Whether Bonifacio is the owner of the lot? HELD: No, He is not an owner. The tax declarations of neighbors stating that Bonifacio is the owner of the lot is not conclusive, so as the testimonies of the neighbors that they saw him working on the lot. As oppose to the tax declarations of the respondents showing they own the land. Possession be mere tolerance cannot ripen into ownership even if such possession have been for a long period of time. Also, the declaration of ownership made by the RTC in favor of respondents is proper because ownership must be decided first before partition may be granted. 169) VERDAD vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. 109972 April 29, 1996 FACTS: Macaria Atega was married twice during her lifetime, first with Angel Burdeos, and second with Canuto Rosales. She owned a land in Butuan City about 248 sq. m., Macaria died in 1956. The petitioner is the Zosima Verdad, who purchased the lot in question for P23,000.00 from heirs of Macarias son (Ramon Burdeos) in 1982. When Socorro (wife of the deceased David Rosales who died some time after his mother Macaria died) found out in March 30, 1987 that the lot was sold to Verdad, she sought intervention of the Lupong Tagapamayapa for redemption, her tender of P23,000.00 was refused because the current value of the property is higher. October 16, 1987, no settlement was reached, thus a case was filed by Socorro (private respondent) for Legal Redemption with Preliminary Injunction, which the RTC denied stating that redemption period already lapse. On appeal to the Court of Appeals, it reversed the RTC and declared that Socorro has the right to redeem the property. ISSUE: Whether Socorro Cordero Vda. De Rosales is capacitated to redeem the property even if she is only related by affinity to Macaria Atega and not an heir? HELD: Yes, Socorro is capacitated to make the redemption. Even if she is not an heir to Macaria, she is an heir to David Rosales who inherited a share of his mothers estate. Article 995 of the Civil Code, in the absence of legitimate descendants and ascendants, and illegitimate and their descendants, whether legitimate of illegitimate, the surviving spouse shall inherit, without prejudice to the rights of brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces, should there be any, under article 1001. The right to redeem spawned from the nondisclosure of the sale to all co-owners when the sale is in favor of a third person. In fact, written notice is required under Article 1623, and the redemption period is 30 days from receipt of such notice. In the case at bar, no notice was given, hence, the 30 day period stared from the time of discovery of the sale on March 30, 1987, and stayed by the proceedings in the Punong Tagapamayapa. There was clear intent to redeem at that time but the offer was rejected by Verdad. 170) TABUSO vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. 108558 June 21, 2001 FACTS: The lot in question is an unregistered parcel of land in Antipolo, Naval, Leyte with an area of 3,267 square meters, which latter turned out to be in fact 11,927 square meters.

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A case was initiated to declare ownership of the land in question. Herein petitioners claim ownership of the land through succession from Ignacio Montes and presented tax declarations from 1944 1947 in the name of Ignacio Montes, but were only paid in 1981. Plaintiff Andrea Tabuso claim to be a successor in interest of Andrea Elaba (daughter of Maria Montes [Maria is the Sister of Ignacio Montes]). Also, there is a house built on the lot by Marcelo Tabuso (father of Andrea Tabuso). Private respondent however, alleged that the land was originally owned by Maria Montes, but she donated it to Isabel Elaba as supported by a document executed on September 24, 1923, thereafter Isabel sold the lot to Esteban Abad in 1948. Various tax declarations were also presented by respondent showing that from 1948 1982 tax has been paid on the lot by respondents predecessors in interest mainly by Esteban Abad. Also, part of the lot is being rented by one Valentin Poblete from Menesio Abad (heir of Esteban) as evidenced by a lease contract. During trial, petitioners also presented as witness the counsel of defendant, Atty. Jose Gonzales, who testified that he owns a lot adjacent to the land in question and that he have personal knowledge that the land in question had been in the possession of the heirs of Esteban Abad. RTC ruled that owner of the property is the respondents, which was upheld by the CA on appeal. ISSUE: Whether the CA was correct in declaring respondents as owner of the land in question? HELD: Yes, Court of Appeals was correct. The totality of evidence presented leans heavily in favor of herein private respondents. They have been able to adduce evidence which support their claim that they have been in open, continuous, and uninterrupted possession for more than 60 years. Also, in view of the size of the land which is 11,927 square meters, it is unbelievable for an alleged owner such as Tabuso to build only a barong-barong (small house) in the lot, which was latter shown to be allowed by mere tolerance by a letter addressed to plaintiff asking them to vacate the property within 3 months time. Also, petitioners are bound by the testimony of Atty. Gonzales even if he is counsel for the private respondent because he was presented by the plaintiff themselves as hostile witness. Petitioners possesses the land as mere holders, distinguished from possession in the concept of an owner, being a mere holder acknowledges another superior right over the property he possess. *Petitioners also raised an issue regarding the adjudication of 11,927 square meters to private respondent when the tax declarations only state 3,267 square meters. This is untenable, because what defines a piece of land is not the numerical data indicated as its area, but the boundaries or metes and bounds specified in its description as enclosing the land indicating its limits. 171) DIZON vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. 116854 November 19, 1996 FACTS: Aida Dizon mortgaged the subject lot to Monte de Piedad Bank on October 23, 1980 and failed to pay the loan obligation, hence the house and lot mortgage was thereafter foreclosed. The bank told Dizon that she can repurchase the property, having no means to pay the amount at the moment, she asked Elizabeth Santiago to repurchase the property in the amount of P550,000.00 on May 28, 1987. The TCT of Dizon was cancelled and a new one was issued in favor of Santiago in view of the Deed of Absolute Sale signed by Dizon in Favor of Santiago, also, an Option to Buy Back was signed by the same parties giving Dizon the option to buy back the said property from Santiago within a period of Three (3) months, with the stipulation that if Dizon failed to used the option within the agreed period, Dizon shall vacate the property in favor of Santiago. The period lapse without Dizon exercising her option to buy, thereafter, Santiago asked Dizon to vacate the premises. Dizon refused, which prompted Santiago to file an Ejectment case before the MTC. After trial, MTC ordered Dizon to vacate the property. RTC reversed and ordered the cancellation of the TCT in favor of Dizon. CA affirmed on appeal, but reversed itself upon MR of Santiago. ISSUE: Whether Dizon is entitled to possession of the subject property? HELD: No, Dizon is not entitled to possession. The title of the property held by the private respondent is enough proof to hold them as the

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rightful possessor upon default of Dizon to exercise her right to redeem the property. Also, the stipulation that Dizon, upon failure to buy back the property within the specified period, shall vacate the property is a binding agreement, thus, Santiago is already entitled to possession after the lapse of the said period. This is ofcourse without prejudice to Dizons right to file another action to determine the ownership of the property, which she interposed as a defense alleging that the sale was an equitable mortgage. The RTC made an error in ordering the cancellation of the TCT because Ejectment cases only dwell on the rightful possession and does not determine ownership with finality. 172) CEQUENA vs. BOLANTE G.R. 137944 April 6, 2000 FACTS: The land subject of the dispute has an area of 1,728 square meters and situated in barangay Bangad, Binangonan, Province of Rizal. Respondent Honorata Mendoza Bolante is the only daughter of Sinforoso Mendoza, while petitioner Cequena is the daughter of Margarito Mendoza. Sinforoso and Margarito are brothers. The subject lot was declared for tax purposes by Sinforoso since 1926. When he died in 1930, his wife and daughter continuously possessed the land, and when respondent was of age in 1948, she paid the taxes for the lot from 1932-1948. Margarito acquired joint possession from 1952, and by a virtue of an affidavit signed allegedly by respondents mother, transferred tax declaration in the name of Margarito Mendoza starting 1954, who thereafter cultivated part of the land with his heirs from 19531985 until they were ousted by respondents. The dispute over who has a better right of possession was raised in the trial court, which decided in favor of the petitioners. The Court of Appeals reversed the said decision and declared the respondents as lawful owner and possessor. ISSUE: Whether respondents are the lawful owner and possessor of the land in question? HELD: Yes, respondent is the lawful owner and possessor of the land. By acquisitive prescription of the property under Article 1134 of the New Civil Code, ownership and other real rights over immovable property may be acquired by ordinary prescription through possession of Ten (10) years. In the case at bar, respondent acquired their rights over the property through tax declaration of Sinforoso, when he died in 1930 respondents continued to possess the property and paid taxes from 1932-1948 in the concept of an owner. Such possession was not disturbed until 1952 when Margarito took joint possession of the land, however, the possession of respondent which is public, peaceful, and uninterrupted already ripened to ownership. *The affidavit that allowed the transfer of tax declaration from Sinforoso to Margarito was doubtful to say the lease, because one of the alleged signatories is the respondent mother of Honorata who testified that she was illiterate and could not have signed the document. *Possession of petitioners cannot ripen into ownership because such possession was not exclusive as they possess the property at the same time respondent are also living therein from 19521985. 1985 respondent ousted petitioner from the property. 173) DEVELOPMENT BANK OF PHILIPPINES vs. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. 129471 April 28, 2000 THE

FACTS: The land in dispute has an area of 19.4 hectares located in San Miguel, Province of Bohol whose original ownership rest with Ulpiano Mumar as evidenced by Tax Declaration since 1917. In 1950, Mumar sold the subject property Carlos Cajes (herein private respondent) who was issued tax declaration in the same year. He occupied and cultivated the land, planting cassava and camote in certain portions of the land. In 1969, unknown to private respondent, Jose Alvarez was able to register a parcel of land with an area of 1,512,468 square meters and OCT #546 was issued in the same year in his name. In 1972 Alvarez sold the property to spouses Beduya to whom TCT #10101 was issued, the former and the latter never occupied the said lot the property included in it the 19.4 hectares owned by Cajes. In the same year, 1972, spouse Beduya acquired a loan from DBP and mortgage the the land under TCT #10101 for P526,000.00, and in 1978 it was again mortgage for another loan in the amount of P1,430,000.00 in favor of the petitioner (DBP), no ocular inspection of the land was made.

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In 1978 private respondent applied for loan from DBP mortgaging the 19.4 hectares giving as evidence of ownership tax declarations and a certification of the Clerk of Court of the Court of First Instance of Bohol that no civil, land registration or cadastral case has been filed or instituted before the court affecting the validity of the Tax Declaration on the 19.4 hectare land. Private respondent approved the loan, however after releasing the money petitioner found out that the land mortgaged by private respondent was included in the land covered by TCT #10101, hence, petitioner immediately cancelled the loan and demanded immediate payment. Private respondent repaid the loan. Spouses Beduya failed to pay their loan and the land in TCT #10101 was forclosed. In 1985 during the foreclosure sale, DBP was the highest bidder, and as spouses Beduya failed to redeem the property, petitioner consolidated its ownership. In 1986, petitioner found out that Cajes is occupying a part of the land in TCT #10101, DBP demanded that Cajes vacate the property but private respondent refused, hence, DBP filed a case for Recovery of Possession against him. RTC ruled in favor of DBP, but the Court of Appeals reversed the decision declaring Cajes the lawful owner of the 19.4 hectares included in TCT #10101. ISSUE: Whether the CA was correct in adjudicating that the 19.4 hectares included in TCT #10101 is owned by private respondent Carlos Cajes? HELD: Yes, Court of Appeals is correct. Acquisitive prescription already vested in Carlos Cajes ownership of the 19.4 hectares of land he was paying tax on since he has been in open public, peaceful, uninterrupted, and adverse possession of the said property in the concept of an owner since 1950. Ordinary prescription requires only such possession for Ten (10) years. Thus, in 1969, when the spouses Beduya were able to register their land under TCT #10101, the private respondent Cajes already acquired ownership over the 19.4 hectares he acquired from Mumar who have been in possession as an owner since 1917. Surely, private respondents possession together with Mumars possession and occupation of the 19.4 hectares is more than Thirty (30) years required under Act no. 496. Although the initial case is recovery of possession of real property, and collateral attack is not allowed in to defeat the indefeasibility of a Torrens Title, the counter claim of the private respondent when he raised the counterclaim of ownership plus damages, was in fact a direct attack on the title. DBP cannot be considered a mortgagor in good faith because being a bank, it is required to exercise due diligence in its dealings as such are impress with public concern. It appears from the facts that it did not conduct inspection of the property of spouses Beduya when they applied for loan. Also, even when it has knowledge since 1978 that the private respondent has a claim in the land covered by TCT #10101, it still bought the land in question in the foreclosure sale in 1985 ignoring the fact that would normally raise suspicion because private respondent is occupying a part of the said lot. 174) VILLANUEVA VS CA G.R. No. 108921 April 12, 2000 FACTS: Petitioners are the legitimate children of Leon Villanueva, Concepcion Macahilas vda. de Villanueva is his widow. Leon was one of eight (8) children of Felipe Villanueva, predecessor-in-interest of the parties in the present case.Private respondents are related by blood to the petitioners as descendants of Felipe. . The remaining undivided portion of the land was held in trust by Leon for his co-heirs. During Leon's lifetime, his co-heirs made several seasonable and lawful demands upon him to subdivide and partition the property, but for one reason or another, no subdivision took place. After the death of Leon in August 1972, private respondents discovered that the shares of four of the heirs of Felipe, namely, Simplicio, Nicolasa, Fausta and Maria Baltazar, spouse of Benito, was purchased by Leon as evidenced by a Deed of Sale executed on August 25, 1946 but registered only in 1971. Leon sometime in July 1970, executed a sale and partition of the property in favor of his own children, herein petitioners. By virtue of such Deed of Partition, private respondents had succeeded in obtaining Original Certificate of Title (OCT) No. C256. On April 25, 1975, petitioners managed to secure separate and independent titles over their pro-indiviso shares in their respective names. Private respondents then filed a case for partition with annulment of documents and reconveyance with the Regional Trial Court of Kalibo, Aklan, Private respondents contended that the sale in favor of Leon was fraudulently obtained through m the

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Regional Trial Court of Kalibo rendered its decision in Civil Case No. 2389, declaring "the defendants the legal owners of the property in question through machinations and false pretenses. On appeal The CA Reversed the Trial courts ruling. ISSUE: Whether or not the appellate court erred in failing to declare action by the private respondents to recover the property in question barred by laches, estoppel, prescription. RULING: Laches is negligence or omission to assert a right within a reasonable time, warranting the presumption that the party entitled to assert it has either abandoned or declined to assert it. Its essential elements are: (1) conduct on the part of the defendant, or of one under whom he claims, giving rise to the situation complained of; (2) delay in asserting complainant's right after he had knowledge of the defendant's conduct and after he has an opportunity to sue; (3) lack of knowledge or notice on the part of the defendant that the complainant would assert the right on which he bases his suit; and (4) injury or prejudice to the defendant in the event relief is accorded to the complainant. At the time of signing of the Deed of Sale of August 26, 1948, private respondents , Ramon and Rosa were minors. They could not be faulted for their failure to file a case to recover their inheritance from their uncle Leon, since up to the age of majority, they believed and considered Leon their co-heir and administrator. It was only in 1975, not in 1948, that they became aware of the actionable betrayal by their uncle. Upon learning of their uncle's actions, they filed an action for recovery. They did not sleep on their rights, contrary to petitioners' assertion. Under the circumstances of the instant case, we do not think that respondent appellate court erred in considering private respondents' action. The action was not too late. Furthermore, when Felipe Villanueva died, an implied trust was created by operation of law between Felipe's children and Leon, their uncle, as far as the 1/6 share of Felipe. Leon's fraudulent titling of Felipe's 1/6 share was a betrayal of that implied trust Neither is the action barred by prescription, we held that an action for reconveyance of a parcel of land based on implied or constructive trust prescribes in 10 years, the point of reference being the date of registration of the deed or the date of the issuance of the certificate of title of the property. Here the questioned Deed of Sale was registered only in 1971. Private respondents filed their complaint in 1975, hence well within the prescriptive period. We held that a land registration case is an action in rem binding upon the whole world, and considering that the private respondents failed to object to the registration of the realty in question, then res judicata had set in. True, but notwithstanding the binding effect of the land registration case upon the private respondents, the latter are not deprived of a remedy. While a review of the decree of registration is no longer available after the expiration of the oneyear period from entry thereof, an equitable remedy is still available. Those wrongfully deprived of their property may initiate an action for reconveyance of the properly. 175) Eduardo Fontanilla vs Court of Appeals G.R. No. 119341, November 29, 1999 FACTS: Spouses Crisanto and Feliciana Duaman were awarded a homestead patent over a parcel of land. Upon their death, private respondent Luis Duaman, one of their children, inherited a four-hectare portion of the homestead. On 21 July 1976, in order to expedite the loan application of his two (2) sons, Ernesto and Elpidio Duaman, with the Development Bank of the Philippines, private respondent transferred to them the ownership of his share in the homestead. On 8 August 1985, in view of the imminence of foreclosure of the said lot by the bank, Ernesto and Elpidio sold the two-hectare portion thereof to Eduardo Fontanilla, Sr. for P30,000.00. The vendee named in the deed of sale was Ellen M.T. Fontanilla. . Sometime later, private respondent informed Eduardo Fontanilla of his desire to repurchase the subject lot. Private respondent filed a case with the RTC of Cauayan Isabela against petitioners for the "Repurchase of the Homestead. Upon motion filed by petitioners, the lower court dismissed private respondent's complaint for failure to state a cause of action On appeal, the CA reversed the order of the trial court.The CA held that private respondent could still exercise the right to repurchase under Section 119 of the Public Land Act (Commonwealth Act No. 141,

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as amended) despite the fact that it was not him but his sons who conveyed the subject lot to petitioners. ISSUE: Whether private respondent, not being the vendor in the sale of the subject lot to petitioners, could no longer exercise his right to repurchase under Section 119 of the Public Land Act against petitioners. RULING: Sec. 119. Every conveyance of land acquired under the free patent or homestead provisions, when proper, shall be subject to repurchase by the applicant, his widow, or legal heirs, within a period of five years from the date of conveyance. (Commonwealth Act 141) these homestead laws were designed to distribute disposable agricultural lots of the " State to landdestitute citizens for their home and cultivation." 2 Further, the plain intent of Section 119 is "to give the homesteader or patentee every chance to preserve for himself and his family the land that the State had gratuitously given to him as a reward for his labor in cleaning and cultivating it. Petitioners argue that private respondent could no longer avail himself of the right to repurchase under Section 119 because he was not the vendor of the subject lot. Only the vendor allegedly has the right to repurchase. Petitioners claim is without merit, Our pronouncement in Madarcos that only the vendor has the right to repurchase was taken out of context by petitioners. Said pronouncement may not be sweepingly applied in this case because of a significant factual difference between the two cases. In Madarcos, we ruled that Cantain (petition herein) cannot repurchase the share of Francisca, his coheir, because the homestead had already been partitioned and distributed among them as heirs. In other words, in that case, we held that Catain could not avail himself of the right granted under Section 119 because he was not entitled to repurchase the share of his co-heir in the homestead. Upon the other hand, in this case, private respondent is precisely seeking to repurchase from petitioners his own share in the homestead that he inherited from his parents. There is nothing in Section 119 which provides that the applicant, his widow, or legal heirs" must be the conveyor of the homestead before any of them can exercise the right to repurchase. Rather, what said law plainly provides is that the "applicant, his widow, or legal heirs" shall be entitled to repurchase the homestead within (5) years from the date of conveyance. In this case, there is no dispute that private respondent is the legal heir of spouses Crisanto and Feliciana Duaman, the homesteaders. Since the transfer of the subject lot by private respondent to his sons does not fall within the purview of Section 119, it necessarily follows that the five-year period to repurchase cannot be reckoned from the date of said conveyance. Rather, the date of conveyance for the purpose of counting the fiveyear period to repurchase under Section 119 is that alienation made to a third party outside of the family circle which in this case was the conveyance of the subject lot to petitioners on 8 August 1985. Accordingly, private respondent's complaint for the repurchase of the subject lot, which was filed on 20 June 1989, was not time-barred as not more than five (5) years had lapsed since the date of its conveyance to petitioners. 176) Quimen Vs. CA and Yolanda Oliveros G.R. No. 112331, May 29, 1996 Facts: Petitioner Anastacia Quimen together with her brothers Sotero, Sulpicio, Antonio and sister Rufina inherited a piece of property situated in Pandi, Bulacan. They agreed to subdivide the property equally among themselves, as they did, with the shares of Anastacia, Sotero, Sulpicio and Rufina abutting the municipal road. In February 1982 Yolanda purchased a part of the lot from her uncle Antonio through her aunt Anastacia who was then acting as his administratrix. According to Yolanda, when petitioner offered her the property for sale she was hesitant to buy as it had no access to a public road. But Anastacia prevailed upon her to buy the lot with the assurance that she would give her a right of way on her adjoining property for P200.00 per square meter. Thereafter, Yolanda constructed a house on the lot she bought using as her passageway to the public highway a portion of Anastacia's property. But when Yolanda finally offered to pay for the use of the pathway Anastacia refused to accept the payment. In fact she was thereafter barred by Anastacia from passing through her property. In February 1986 Yolanda purchased the other lot of Antonio Quimen, located directly behind the property of her parents who provided her a pathway Although the pathway leads to the municipal road it is not adequate for ingress and egress. The municipal road cannot be reached with facility because the store itself obstructs the path so that one has to pass through the back entrance and the facade of the store to

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reach the road. On 29 December 1987 Yolanda filed an action with the trial court praying for a right of way through Anastacia's property. The trial court dismissed the complaint for lack of cause of action. On appeal by respondent Yolanda, the Court of Appeals reversed the lower court and held that she was entitled to a right of way on petitioner's property ISSUE: Whether Yolanda is entitled to a right of way on her property RULING: YES, she is entitled. Yolanda sufficiently established the presence of the ff: 1. her estate (dominant estate) is surrounded by other immovable without an adequate outlet to public highway; 2. she is willing to pay the proper indemnity; 3. the isolation was not due to the acts of Yolanda; and 4. the right of way being claimed is at a point least prejudicial to the servient estate. The criterion of least prejudicial to the servient estate must prevail over the criterion of shortest distance. Where the easement may be established on any of several tenements surrounding the dominant estate, the one where the way is shortest and will cause the least damage should be chosen. However, if these 2 circumstances do not concur, the way which will cause the least damage should be used even if it will not be the shortest. In this case, Anastacias property is least prejudicial since it will not entail the demolition of a sari-sari store which is made of strong materials. As between a right of way that would demolish a store of strong materials to provide egress to a public highway, and another right of way which although longer will require an avocado tree to be cut down, the second alternative should be preferred. 177) Valley Land Resources vs Valley Golf Club G.R. No. 126584. November 15, 2001 Facts: Victoria Valley Blvd is composed of road lots which connects Ortigas Avenue and Sumulong Highway. Half of the Boulevard is made up of road lots owned by defendant-appellant Valley Golf. The other half is supposed to be owned by Hacienda Benito with whom Valley Golf entered into an agreement, whereby it was agreed that Hacienda Benito and Valley Golf will own jointly Victoria Valley Blvd, one of the provisions provide that the right of way shall be owned and maintained jointly by Hacienda Benito and Valley Golf. Thereafter, Hacienda Benito transferred ownership and all its rights and interests over the road lots covering half of the Victoria Valley Blvd. to herein plaintiff-appellee Valley Land by virtue of a Mutual Agreement Valley Golf treated and recognized Valley Land as its alleged new co-owner over Victoria Valley Blvd., sharing half of all the proceeds of the grant of right of way over the boulevard. However, in a subsequent review of the agreement between Valley Golf and Hacienda Benito, Valley Golf discovered that there is actually no existing coownership between them over Victoria Valley Blvd. Valley Golf retained exclusive ownership over the road lots forming part of Victoria Valley Blvd. notwithstanding their agreement, and that the other half of the boulevard is no longer under the name of either Hacienda Benito or Valley Land as the same has been disposed of already and is registered in favor of the Active Realty & Dev't. Corp. Based on said discovery, Valley Golf sought to recover the sum of money which it allegedly remitted by mistake to Valley Land which represents the supposed share of the latter in the grant of right of way. Valley Land in turn sought the cancellation of Valley Golf s titles over the road lots forming half of Victoria Valley Blvd. The cases were filed before the Regional Trial Court of Antipolo and consolidated therein. In due time, the assailed decision was rendered and brought to this Court on appeal by Valley Golf ISSUE: Whether Valley Golf is the sole owner of the subject road lots, or Valley Land is a co-owner thereof RULING: Valley Golf is the sole owner of the road lots. The TCTs which are the subject of the road right of way and all the rest of the other certificates of title covering the road lots are solely in the name of Valley Golf. Consequently, there can be no question that Valley Golf is the owner of the road lots. As such owner, Valley Golf has the right to enjoy and

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dispose of the same without any limitations other than those established by law. However, Valley Golf made the mistake of sharing the proceeds of the right of way with Valley Land. Considering that when the said amount was given to Valley Land, it did not have the right to receive the amount as Valley Golf delivered it under the mistaken belief that Valley Land was a co-owner of the lands, thus Valley Land was under obligation to return the amount of P1,585,962.96. 178) Cabatingan vs heirs of Corazon Cabatingan G.R. No. 131953. June 5, 2002 FACTS: On February 17, 1992, Conchita Cabatingan executed in favor of her brother, petitioner Nicolas Cabatingan, a "Deed of Conditional of Donation Inter Vivos for House and Lot" covering () portion of the former's house and lot located at Liloan, Cebu. Four (4) other deeds of donation were subsequently executed by Conchita Cabatingan on January 14, 1995, bestowing upon: (a) petitioner Estela C. Maglasang, two (2) parcels of land - one located in Cogon, Cebu and the other, a portion of a parcel of land in Masbate. (b) petitioner Nicolas Cabatingan, a portion of a parcel of land located in Masbate (and (c) petitioner Merly S. Cabatingan, a portion of the Masbate property These deeds of donation contain similar provisions: "That for and in consideration of the love and affection of the DONOR for the DONEE, x x x the DONOR transfers, conveys, by way of donation, unto the DONEE the above property, to become effective upon the death of the DONOR xxx Upon learning of the existence of these donations, respondents filed with the RTC an action for Annulment And Declaration of Nullity of Deed of Donations and Accounting. Respondents allege that petitioners, through their sinister machinations and strategies and taking advantage of Conchita Cabatingan's fragile condition, caused the execution of the deeds of donation, and, that the documents are void for failing to comply with the provisions of the Civil Code regarding formalities of wills and testaments, considering that these are donations mortis causa. Respondents prayed that they be declared as co-owners of the properties in equal shares, together with Nicolas Cabatingan. RTC rendered a partial judgment in favor of respondents by declaring the 4 Deeds of Donation as null and void for being a Donation Mortis Causa and for failure to comply with formal and solemn requisite under Art. 806 of the New Civil Code; declaring respondents as co-owners of the properties of Conchita ISSUE: Whether or not the donations are mortis causa or inter vivos RULING: The Donations in this case are Mortis Causa. In a Donation Mortis Causa, "the right of disposition is not transferred to the donee while the donor is still alive." In determining whether a donation is one of mortis causa, the following characteristics must be taken into account: (1) It conveys no title or ownership to the transferee before the death of the transferor; transferor retains ownership (full or naked) and control of the property while alive; (2) Before his death, the transfer should be revocable by the transferor at will, ad nutum; (3) The transfer should be void if the transferor should survive the transferee. In the present case, the nature of the donations as mortis causa is confirmed by the fact that the donations do not contain any clear provision that intends to pass proprietary rights to petitioners prior to Cabatingan's death. It establishes the donor's intention to transfer the ownership and possession of the donated property to the donee only after the former's death. The phrase "to become effective upon the death of the DONOR" admits of no other interpretation but that Cabatingan did not intend to transfer the ownership of the properties to petitioners during her lifetime. Petitioners themselves expressly confirmed the donations as mortis causa in the following Acceptance and Attestation clauses, uniformly found in the subject deeds of donation, "That the DONEE does hereby accept the foregoing donation mortis causa. 179) GONZALES vs. CA G.R. No. 110335. June 18, 2001 FACTS: The deceased spouses Ignacio Gonzales and Marina Gonzales were the registered owners of two parcels of agricultural Land situated at Barrio Fortaleza, Cabanatuan City, Herein petitioners are the successors-in-interest or the children and grandchildren of said Gonzales spouses. On the

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other hand, private respondents are the farmers and tenants of said spouses who have been cultivating the parcels of land even before World War II either personally or through their predecessors-in-interest. On May 7, 1969, Marina Gonzales died intestate and appointed as administratrix of her estate was petitioner Lilia Gonzales. Prior to the partition of said estate, Ignacio Gonzales executed a Deed of Donation on July 12, 1972 conveying his share of the property. When Presidential Decree No. 27 (P.D. No. 27) took effect on October 21, 1972, the landholdings of the spouses Gonzales were placed under Operation Land Transfer by virtue of said decree, and private respondents were accordingly issued the corresponding Certificates of Land Transfer and Emancipation Patents. On March 5, 1974, the administratrix Lilia Gonzales filed an application for retention with the then Ministry of Agrarian Reform, requesting that their property be excluded from the coverage of Operation Land Transfer. Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) resolution dated February 23, 1983 recommending that the land subject of the deed of donation, or Lot No. 551-C, be exempt from Operation Land Transfer. ISSUE:Whether the property subject of the deed of donation which was not registered when P.D. No. 27 took effect, should be excluded from the Operation Land Transfer. RULING: No. Article 749 of the Civil Code provides that "in order that the donation of an immovable may be valid, it must be made in a public document, specifying therein the property donated and the value of the charges which the donee must satisfy." Article 709 of the same Code explicitly states that "the titles of ownership, or other rights over immovable property, which are not duly inscribed or annotated in the Registry of property shall not prejudice third persons. From the foregoing provisions, it may be inferred that as between the parties to a donation of an immovable property, all that is required is for said donation to be contained in a public document. Registration is not necessary for it to be considered valid and effective. However, in order to bind third persons, the donation must be registered in the Registry of Property (now Registry of Land Titles and Deeds). Although the nonregistration of a deed of donation shall not affect its validity, the necessity of registration comes into play when the rights of third persons are affected, as in the case at bar. It is undisputed in this case that the donation executed by Ignacio Gonzales in favor of his grandchildren, although in writing and duly notarized, has not been registered in accordance with law. For this reason, it shall not be binding upon private respondents who did not participate in said deed or had no actual knowledge thereof. Hence, while the deed of donation is valid between the donor and the donees, such deed, however, did not bind the tenants-farmers who were not parties to the donation. From the foregoing, the ineluctable conclusion drawn is that the unregistered deed of donation cannot operate to exclude the subject land from the coverage of the Operation Land Transfer of P.D. No. 27, which took effect on October 21, 1972. To rule otherwise would render ineffectual the rights and interests that the tenants-farmers immediately acquired upon the promulgation of P.D. No. 27. 180) Republic vs. Leon Silim G.R. No. 140487. April 2, 2001 FACTS: On 17 December 1971, respondents, the Spouses Leon Silim and Ildefonsa Mangubat, donated a 5,600 square meter parcel of land in favor of the Bureau of Public Schools, Municipality of Malangas, Zamboanga del Sur (BPS). In the Deed of Donation, respondents imposed the condition that the said property should "be used exclusively and forever for school purposes only."1 This donation was accepted by Gregorio Buendia, the District Supervisor of BPS, through an Affidavit of Acceptance and Confirmation of Donation. Through a fund raising campaign spearheaded by the Parent-Teachers Association of Barangay Kauswagan, a school building was constructed on the donated land. However, the Bagong Lipunan school building that was supposed to be allocated for the donated parcel of land in Barangay Kauswagan could not be released since the government required that it be built upon a one (1) hectare parcel of land. To remedy this predicament, Assistant School Division Superintendent of the Province of Zamboanga del Sur, Sabdani Hadjirol, authorized District Supervisor Buendia to officially transact for the exchange of the one-half (1/2) hectare old school site of Kauswagan Elementary School to a new and suitable location which would fit the specifications of the government. Pursuant to this, District Supervisor Buendia and Teresita Palma entered into a Deed of Exchange whereby the donated lot was exchanged with the bigger lot owned by the latter..

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When respondent Leon Silim saw, to his surprise, that Vice-Mayor Wilfredo Palma was constructing a house on the donated land, he asked the latter why he was building a house on the property he donated to BPS. Vice Mayor Wilfredo Palma replied that he is already the owner of the said property. Respondent Leon Silim endeavored to stop the construction of the house on the donated property but Vice-Mayor Wilfredo Palma advised him to just file a case in court. On February 10, 1982, respondents filed a Complaint for Revocation and Cancellation of Conditional Donation, Annulment of Deed of Exchange and Recovery of Possession and Ownership of Real Property with damages against Vice Mayor Wilfredo Palma before the RTC of Pagadian City which dismissed the complaint for lack of merit. Not satisfied with the decision of the trial court, respondents appealed in which the Court of Appeals reversed the decision of the trial court and declared the donation null and void on the grounds that the donation was not properly accepted and the condition imposed on the donation was violated. ISSUE: Whether or not the donation is valid. HELD: Donations, according to its purpose or cause, may be categorized as: (1) pure or simple; (2) remuneratory or compensatory; (3) conditional or modal; and (4) onerous. An onerous donation is that which imposes upon the donee a reciprocal obligation or, to be more precise, this is the kind of donation made for a valuable consideration, the cost of which is equal to or more than the thing donated. Unlike the other forms of donation, the validity of and the rights and obligations of the parties involved in an onerous donation are completely governed not by the law on donations but by the law on contracts (Article 733 Civil Code). The donation involved in the present controversy is one which is onerous since there is a burden imposed upon the donee to build a school on the donated property. In accordance to Art. 745 & 749, there was a valid acceptance of the donation in this case. The written acceptance of the donation having been considered by the trial court in arriving at its decision, there is the presumption that this exhibit was properly offered and admitted by the court. Also, a school building was immediately constructed after the donation was executed. Silim had knowledge of the existence of the school building put up on the lot. The condition for the donation in this case was not violated when the lot donated was exchanged with another one. The purpose for the donation remains the same - for the establishment of a school. The exclusivity of the purpose was not altered or affected. In fact, the exchange of the lot for a much bigger one was in furtherance and enhancement of the purpose of the donation. The acquisition of the bigger lot paved the way for the release of funds for the construction of Bagong Lipunan School Bldg which could not be accommodated by the limited area of the donated lot. 181) QUILALA V. ALCANTARA G.R. No. 13268, December 3, 2001 FACTS: On February 20, 1981, Catalina Quilala executed a "Donation of Real Property Inter Vivos" in favor of Violeta Quilala over a parcel of land located in Sta. Cruz, Manila. The "Donation of Real Property Inter Vivos" consists of two pages. The first page contains the deed of donation itself, and is signed on the bottom portion by Catalina Quilala as donor, Violeta Quilala as donee, and two instrumental witnesses. The second page contains the Acknowledgment, which states merely that Catalina Quilala personally appeared before the notary public and acknowledged that the donation was her free and voluntary act and deed. There appear on the lefthand margin of the second page the signatures of Catalina Quilala and one of the witnesses, and on the right-hand margin the signatures of Violeta Quilala and the other witness. On November 7, 1983, Catalina Quilala died. Violeta Quilala likewise died on May 22, 1984. Petitioner Ricky Quilala alleges that he is the surviving son of Violeta Quilala.. Meanwhile, respondents Gliceria Alcantara, Leonora Alcantara, Ines Reyes and Juan Reyes, claiming to be Catalina's only surviving relatives within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity, executed a deed of extrajudicial settlement of estate, dividing and adjudicating unto themselves the subject property. The trial court found that the deed of donation, although signed by both Catalina and Violeta, was acknowledged before a notary public only by the donor, Catalina. Consequently, there was no acceptance by Violeta of the donation in a public instrument, thus rendering the donation null and void. Furthermore, the trial court held that nowhere in Catalina's SSS records does it appear that Violeta was Catalina's daughter. Rather, Violeta was referred to therein as an adopted child, but there

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was no positive evidence that the adoption was legal. On the other hand, the trial court found that respondents were first cousins of Catalina Quilala. However, since it appeared that Catalina died leaving a will, the trial court ruled that respondents' deed of extrajudicial settlement cannot be registered. On appeal, the Court of Appeals rendered a decision affirming with modification the decision of the trial court by dismissing the complaint for lack of cause of action without prejudice to the filing of probate proceedings of Catalina's alleged last will and testament. ISSUE: validity of the donation executed by Catalina in favor of Violeta HELD: Article 749 of the Civil Code, the donation of an immovable must be made in a public instrument in order to be valid, specifying therein the property donated and the value of the charges which the donee must satisfy. As a mode of acquiring ownership, donation results in an effective transfer of title over the property from the donor to the donee,and is perfected from the moment the donor knows of the acceptance by the donee, provided the donee is not disqualified or prohibited by law from accepting the donation. Once the donation is accepted, it is generally considered irrevocable, and the donee becomes the absolute owner of the property. The acceptance, to be valid, must be made during the lifetime of both the donor and the donee.It may be made in the same deed or in a separate public document, and the donor must know the acceptance by the donee. In the case at bar, the deed of donation contained the number of the certificate of title as well as the technical description of the real property donated. It stipulated that the donation was made for and in consideration of the "love and affection which the DONEE inspires in the DONOR, and as an act of liberality and generosity." Below the terms and stipulations of the donation, the donor, donee and their witnesses affixed their signature. However, the Acknowledgment appearing on the second page mentioned only the donor, Catalina Quilala. The second page of the deed of donation, on which the Acknowledgment appears, was signed by the donor and one witness on the left-hand margin, and by the donee and the other witness on the right hand margin. Surely, the requirement that the contracting parties and their witnesses should sign on the lefthand margin of the instrument is not absolute. The intendment of the law merely is to ensure that each and every page of the instrument is authenticated by the parties. The requirement is designed to avoid the falsification of the contract after the same has already been duly executed by the parties. Simply put, the specification of the location of the signature is merely directory. The fact that one of the parties signs on the wrong side of the page does not invalidate the document. The purpose of authenticating the page is served, and the requirement in the above-quoted provision is deemed substantially complied with. In the same vein, the lack of an acknowledgment by the donee before the notary public does not also render the donation null and void. The instrument should be treated in its entirety. It cannot be considered a private document in part and a public document in another part. The fact that it was acknowledged before a notary public converts the deed of donation in its entirety a public instrument. The fact that the donee was not mentioned by the notary public in the acknowledgment is of no moment. To be sure, it is the conveyance that should be acknowledged as a free and voluntary act. In any event, the donee signed on the second page, which contains the Acknowledgment only. Her acceptance, which is explicitly set forth on the first page of the notarized deed of donation, was made in a public instrument. 182) SPOUSES STA. MARIA COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. 127549, January 28, 1998 V.

FACTS: Spouses Arsenio and Roslynn Fajardo are the registered owners of a piece of land, Lot No. 124, located at Paco, Obando, Bulacan. They acquired said lot under a Deed of Absolute Sale dated February 6, 1992 executed by the vendors Pedro M. Sanchez, et al. Plaintiff's aforesaid Lot 124 is surrounded by a fishpond on the northeast portion thereof; by Lot 126, owned by Florentino Cruz, on the southeast portion; by Lot 6-a and a portion of Lot 6-b, owned respectively by Spouses Cesar and Raquel Sta. Maria and Florcerfida Sta. Maria, on the southwest; and by Lot 122, owned by the Jacinto family, on the northwest. On February 17, 1992, Respondent spouses Fajardo filed a complaint against petitioner Cesar and Raquel Sta. Maria or Florcerfida Sta. Maria for the establishment of an easement of right of way. Respondents alleged that their lot, Lot 124, is surrounded by properties belonging to other persons, including those of the petitioners; that since

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respondents have no adequate outlet to the provincial road, an easement of a right of way passing through either of the alternative petitioners properties which are directly abutting the provincial road would be respondents only convenient, direct and shortest access to and from the provincial road; that respondents predecessors-in-interest have been passing through the properties of petitioners going to and from their lot; that petitioners' mother even promised respondents' predecessors-in-interest to grant the latter an easement of right of way as she acknowledged the absence of an access from their property to the road; and that alternative petitioners, despite respondents request for a right of way and referral of the dispute to the barangay officials, refused to grant them an easement. Thus, respondents prayed that an easement of right of way on the lots of defendants be established in their favor. Defendants, instead of filing an answer, filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that the lower court has no jurisdiction to hear the case since plaintiffs failed to refer the matter to the barangay lupon. The lower court, however, in its Order dated May 18, 1992, denied said motion on the premise that there was substantial compliance with the law. The trial court found that based on the Ocular Inspection Report there was no other way through which the private respondents could establish a right of way in order to reach the provincial road except by traversing directly the property of the petitioners. The Court of Appeals agreed with the trial court that the private respondents had sufficiently established the existence of the four requisites for compulsory easement of right of way on petitioners' property, to wit: (1) private respondents' property was, as revealed by the Ocular inspection Report, surrounded by other immovables owned by different individuals and was without an adequate outlet to a public highway; (2) the isolation of private respondents' property was not due to their own acts, as it was already surrounded by other immovables when they purchased it; (3) petitioners' property would provide the shortest way from private respondents' property to the provincial road, and this way would cause the least prejudice because no significant structure would be injured thereby; and (4) the private respondents were willing to pay the corresponding damages provided for by law if the right of way would be granted. ISSUE: WHETHER OR NOT A COMPULSORY RIGHT OF WAY CAN BE GRANTED TO PRIVATE RESPONDENTS HELD: In the instant case, the Court of Appeals have correctly found the existence of the requisites. Private respondents' property is landlocked by neighboring estates belonging to different owners. The petitioners try to convince the Court that there are two other existing passage ways over the property of Cruz and over that of Jacinto, as well as a "daang tao," for private respondents' use. But the examination of the records yields otherwise. Said lots of Cruz and Jacinto do not have existing passage ways for the private respondents to use. Moreover, the Ocular Inspection Report reveals that the suggested alternative ways through Cruz's or Jacinto's properties are longer and "circuitous" than that through petitioners' property. This is also clear from the Sketch Plan submitted by the private respondents wherein it is readily seen that the lots of Cruz and Jacinto are only adjacent to that of private respondents unlike that of petitioners which is directly in front of private respondents' property in relation to the public highway. Under Article 650 of the Civil Code, the easement of right of way shall be established at the point least prejudicial to the servient estate, and, insofar as consistent with this rule, where the distance from the dominant estate to a public highway may be the shortest. Where there are several tenements surrounding the dominant estate, and the easement may be established on any of them, the one where the way is shortest and will cause the least damage should be chosen.The conditions of "least damage" and "shortest distance" are both established in one tenement petitioners' property. As to the "daang tao" at the back of private respondents' property, it must be stressed that under Article 651 the width of the easement of right of way shall be that which is sufficient for the needs of the dominant estate, and may accordingly be changed from time to time. Therefore, the needs of the dominant estate determine the width of the easement.The needs of private respondents' property could hardly be served by this "daang tao" located at the back and which is bordered by a fishpond.

183) CRISTOBAL V. COURT OF APPEALS 291 SCRA 122

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FACTS: Petitioners own a house and lot situated at Visayas Avenue Extension, Quezon City, where they have been residing from 1961 to the present. Respondent Cesar Ledesma, Inc., on the other hand, is the owner of a subdivision at Barrio Culiat along Visayas Avenue which once included the disputed residential lots, Lot 1 and Lot 2, located adjacent to petitioners' property. Lots 1 and 2 were originally part of a private road known as Road Lot 2 owned exclusively by Cesar Ledesma, Inc. Petitioners were using Road Lot 2 in going to and from the nearest public road. When Visayas Avenue became operational as a national road in 1979, Cesar Ledesma, Inc., filed a petition before the RTC of Quezon City to be allowed to convert Road Lot 2 into residential lots. The petition was granted, hence, Road Lot 2 was converted into residential lots designated as lot 1 and lot 2. Subsequently, Cesar Ledesma , Inc., sold both lots to Macario Pacione. In turn, Macario Pacione conveyed the lots to his son and dauhter-in-law, respondent spouses Jesus and Lerma Pacione. When the Pacione spouses, who intended to build a house on Lot 1, Visited the property in 1987, they found out that the lot was occupied by a squatter named Juanita Geronimo and a portion was being used a passageway by petitioners to and from Visayas Avenue. Accordingly, the spouses complained about the intrusion into their property to the Barangay Office. When the parties failed to arrive at an amicable settlement, the spouses started enclosing Lot 1 with a concrete fence. Petitioners prostested the enclosure alleging that their property was bounded on all sides by residential houses belonging to different owners and had no adequate outlet and inlet to Visayas Avenue except through the property of the Paciones. As their protests went unheeded, petitioners instituted an action for easement of right of way. At the instance of the parties, the trial court ordered an ocular inspection of the property. The trial court dismissed the complaint holding that one essential requisite of a legal easement of right of way was not proved, i.e., the absence of an alternative adequate way or outlet to a public highway, in this case, Visayas Avenue. On 16 January 1996 the Court of Appeals rendered its assailed decision affirming the findings of the trial court. ISSUE: whether or not petitioners are entitled to a compulsory easement of right of way HELD: To be entitled to a compulsory easement of right of way, the preconditions provided under Arts. 649 and 650 of the Civil Code must be established. These are: (1) that the dominant estate is surrounded by other immovables and has no adequate outlet to a public highway; (2) that proper indemnity has been paid; (3) that the isolation was not due to acts of the proprietor of the dominant estate; (4) that the right of way claimed is at a point least prejudicial to the servient estate and, in so far as consistent with this rule, where the distance from the dominant estate to a public highway may be the shortest.The burden of proving the existence of these prerequisites lies on the owner of the dominant estate. In the present case, the first element is clearly absent. As found by the trial court and the Court of Appeals, an outlet already exist, which is a path walk located at the left side of petitioners' property and which is connected to a private road about five hundred (500) meters long. The private road, in turn, leads to Ma. Elena Street which is about 2.5 meters wide and, finally, to Visayas Avenue. This outlet was determined by the court a quo to be sufficient for the needs of the dominants estate, hence petitioners have no cause to complain that they have no adequate outlet to Visayas Avenue. Further, no evidence was adduced by petitioners to prove that the easement they seek to impose on private respondents' property is to be established at a point least prejudicial to the servient estate. For emphasis, Lot 1 is only 164 square meters and an improvident imposition of the easement on the lot may unjustly deprive private respondents of the optimum use and enjoyment of their property, considering that its already small area will be reduced further by the easement. Worse, it may even render the property useless for the purpose for which private respondents purchased the same. It must also be stressed that, by its very nature, and when considered with reference to the obligations imposed on the servient estate, an easement involves an abnormal restriction on the property rights of the servient owner and is regarded as a charge or encumbrance on the servient estate. Thus, it is incumbent upon the owner of the dominant estate to establish by clear and convincing evidence the presence of all the preconditions before his claim for easement of right of way be granted. Petitioners miserably failed in this regard. On the question of adequacy of the existing outlet, petitioners allege that the path walk is much longer, circuitous and inconvenient, as from Visayas Avenue one has to pass by Ma. Elena St., turn right to a private road, then enter, then vacant lot, and turn right again to exit from the vacant lot until one reaches petitioners' property.

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CIVIL LAW REVIEW I - LLB4402(2010-2011)


Atty. Viviana Martin-Paguirigan
We find petitioners' concept of what is "adequate outlet" a complete disregard of the well-entrenched doctrine that in order to justify the imposition of an easement of right of way there must be a real, not ficititious or artificial, necessity for it. Mere convenience for the dominant estate is not what is required by law as the basis for setting up a compulsory easement. Even in the face of necessity, if it can be satisfied without imposing the easement, the same should not be imposed Admittedly, the proposed right of way over private respondents' property is the most convenient, being the shorter and the more direct route to Visayas Avenue. However, it is not enough that the easement be where the way is shortest. It is more improtant that it be where it will cause the least prejudice to the servient estate. As discussed elsewhere, petitioners failed to sufficiently demonstrate that the proposed right of way shall be at a point least prejudicial to the servient estate. 184) CAMARINES NORTE ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE, INC. (CANORECO) V. COURT OF APPEALS 345 SCRA 85 FACTS: On May 18, 1989, Conrad L. Leviste filed with the RTC of Daet, Camarines Norte, a complaint for collection of a sum of money and foreclosure of mortgage against Philippine Smelter Corporation (PSC). For failure to file an answer to the complaint, the trial court declared PSC in default and allowed plaintiff Leviste to present evidence ex-parte. On November 23, 1989, the trial court rendered a decision in favor of plaintiff. When the decision became final and executory, the trial court issued a writ of execution and respondent sheriff Eduardo R. Moreno levied upon two (2) parcels of land issued by the Registrar of Deeds in the name of PSC. On April 24, 1990, the parcels of land were sold at public auction in favor of Vines Realty Corporation. On April 25, 1990, the Clerk of Court, as ex-officio Provincial Sheriff, issued a Certificate of Sale which Judge Luis D. Dictado, in his capacity as executive judge, approved. On June 23, 1992, Vines Realty moved for the issuance of a writ of possession over said property. On June 25, 1992, the trial court granted the motion. On August 7, 1992, copy of the writ of possession was served on petitioner as owner of the power lines standing on certain portions of the subject property. Later, on August 12, 1992, Vines Realty filed an amended motion for an order of demolition and removal of improvements on the subject land. Among the improvements for removal were the power lines and electric posts belonging to petitioner. Petitioner opposed the motion on the ground that petitioner was not a party to the case and therefore not bound by the judgment of the trial court and that it had subsisting right-of-way agreements over said property. The trial court proceeded with the hearing despite the fact that petitioner had no counsel present. Thus, only Vines Realty presented its evidence. On the same date, November 27, 1992, the trial court ordered the issuance of a writ of demolition. On December 7, 1992, petitioner filed with the Court of Appeals a petition for prohibition with restraining order and pr