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VOL.

350,JANUARY30,2001
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G.R.No.134343.January30,2001.*
MAXIMOA.SAVELLANO,petitioner,vs.COURTOFAPPEALS,NENADEGUZMAN,BENDEGUZMANandCECILIOCRUZ,respondents.
RemedialLaw;ProvisionalRemedies;Injunctions;Thewellsettledprincipleisthatinjunctions,asarule,willnotbegrantedtotakepropertyoutofthepossessionorcontrolof
onepartyandplaceitintothatofanotherwhosetitlehasnotbeenclearlyestablishedbylaw.Thewellsettledprinciple,buttressedbyalonglineofcasesisthatinjunctions,asa
rule,willnotbegrantedtotakepropertyoutofthepossessionorcontrolofonepartyandplaceitintothatofanotherwhosetitlehasnotbeenclearlyestablishedbylaw.In Angela
Estate,Inc.v.CourtofAppeals,weheldInjunctions,likeotherequitableremedies,willissueonlyattheinstanceofasuitorwhohassufficientinterestortitleintherightor
propertysoughttobeprotectedxxxxItisalwaysagroundfordenyinginjunctionthatthepartyseekingithasinsufficienttitleorinteresttosustainit,andnoclaimtotheultimate
reliefsoughtinotherwords,thatheshowsno
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*SECONDDIVISION.
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equityxxxx.Thecomplainant'srightortitle,moreover,mustbeclearandunquestioned,forequity,asarule,willnotlenditspreventiveaidbyinjunctionwherethe
complainantstitleorrightisdoubtfulordisputed.
Same;Same;Same;Petitionerhasnotclearlyestablishedhistitletothepropertyinquestionnorhasheclearlyshownthatprivaterespondentswereindeedmereintrudersor
squattersthereon.AnentthelowercourtsrelianceonSantosv.CourtofAppeals,wefinditmisplaced.True,wemadeapronouncementthat,exceptionallyandasanequitable
concession,aninjunctionmaybegrantedtotakepropertyoutofthepossessionorcontrolofonepartyandplaceitintothatofanother;yet,itmustbepointedoutthatinthatcase
thegovernmentstitletothepropertyhadbeenshowntobeclear,welldefinedandcertainandthattherewasanurgentneedforitsissuanceinordertopreventsocialunrestinthe
communityforhavingbeendeprivedoftheuseandenjoymentofwatersfoundinthereservoirlocatedinthesubjectpremises.Incontrast,petitioner,toourmind,hasnotclearly
establishedhistitletothepropertyinquestionnorhasheclearlyshownthatprivaterespondentswereindeedmereintrudersorsquattersthereon.Assuch,theexception
enunciatedinSantosv.CourtofAppealsdoesnotapply.
Same;Same;Same;Thereisnopowertheexerciseofwhichismoredelicatewhichrequiresgreatercaution,deliberationandsounddiscretion,orwhichismoredangerousina
doubtfulcase,thantheissuingofaninjunction.Theeffectofthepreliminaryprohibitoryandmandatoryinjunctionsissuedbythelowercourtistodisposeofthemaincase
withouttrial.Privaterespondentswillhavetobehurledoffintothestreets,theirhousesbuiltonthepremisesdemolishedandtheirplantingsdestroyedwithoutaffordingthemthe
opportunitytoprovetheirrightofpossessionincourt.Inviewoftherightstobeaffectedthroughtheissuanceofinjunctions,courtsshouldatbestberemindedthat(t)hereisno
powertheexerciseofwhichismoredelicatewhichrequiresgreatercaution,deliberationandsounddiscretion,orwhichismoredangerousinadoubtfulcase,thantheissuingof
aninjunction.
PETITIONforreviewoncertiorariofadecisionoftheCourtofAppeals.
ThefactsarestatedintheopinionoftheCourt.
TheLawFirmofRaymundoA.Armovitforpetitioner.
CarmeloandMillaresLawOfficesforprivaterespondents.
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BELLOSILLO,J.:

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Thisisapetitionforreviewseekingtosetasidethe14November1997Decision1oftheCourtofAppealsnullifyingthe20June1996Order2oftheRegionalTrialCourt,Br.75,
SanMateo,Rizal,whichdirectedtheissuanceofaWritofPreliminaryProhibitoryandMandatoryInjunctionagainstprivaterespondentsrequiringthemandallpersonsclaiming
underthemtovacatethethree(3)parcelsoflandsubjectmatterofthecase,todesistfromfurtherenteringtheproperty,andtoallowpetitionertotakefullpossessionandcontrol
ofthepropertyasregisteredownerthereof.Petitionerlikewiseseeksthereviewofthe28April1997ResolutionoftheCourtofAppealsdenyinghisMotionforReconsideration.
Thefacts:On26May1993petitionerMaximoA.Savellano,Jr.filedacomplaint3forRecoveryofPossessionofRealPropertywithPrayerfortheIssuanceofaTemporary
RestrainingOrderandWritsofPreliminaryProhibitoryandMandatoryInjunctionagainstprivaterespondentsNenadeGuzman,BendeGuzman,CecilioCruzandJohnDoe.
Petitionerclaimedthathewastheregisteredownerofthree(3)parcelsoflandsituatedinSitioLabahan,SanMateo,Rizal,coveredbyTransferCertificatesofTitleNos.459007,
459008and459166portionsofwhichwereallegedlyoccupiedbythedeGuzmans,CruzandotherJohnDoeswithouthisknowledgeandconsentforatleastayearpriortothe
institutionofhiscomplaint.
IntheirAnswer,4privaterespondentsdeniedtheallegationsstatingthattheyhadbeeninthepeacefulpossessionofthepropertysince1976orformorethanseventeen(17)years
priortotheinstitutionofthiscomplaint.InsupportthereofNenadeGuzmanpresentedrealpropertytaxdeclarationsandtaxreceiptsissuedbytheMunicipalTreasurerofSan
Mateoinherfavor.Privatere
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1DecisionpennedbyAssociateJusticeAliciaAustriaMartinez,concurredinbyAssociateJusticesArturoB.BuenaandRomeoJ.Callejo,CourtofAppeals;Rollo,pp.3443.
2OrderpennedbyJudgeAndresB.Reyes,Jr.,RTCBr.75,SanMateo,Rizal;id.,pp.5966.
3Rollo,pp.4752.
4Id.,pp.5355.
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spondentsfurtherclaimedthatthecertificatesoftitleofferedinevidencebyMaximoSavellanodidnotcoverthepremisesbeingoccupiedbythem.
Toresolvethisissue,thetrialcourt,uponagreementoftheparties,issuedanorderdirectingthesurveyoroftheBureauofLandstoconductasurveyoftheproperty,withthe
manifestationfromcounselofprivaterespondentsthattheywouldvacatethepropertyifitbeshownthattheywereoccupyingpetitionersproperty.
Incompliancetherewith,Engr.AndresL.Valencia,ChiefoftheControlSection,SurveysDivision,LandManagementBureau,DENRRegionIV,conductedagroundsurveyof
thepropertycoveredbyTCTNos.459007,459008,459166.Thereafter,Engr.Valenciasubmittedhisnarrativereportwiththefollowingfindings:3.4.thattherearethreehouses
withintheclaimoftheplaintiff;3.5.thatlot11A(LRC)Psd88304wasencrouch(sic)bytheconcretefenceatitseasternpart;and3.6.thatcorners1and2oflot11E(LRO)
Psd99304andcorners5&6ofLot11C1(LRC)Psd206834werenotmonumented.5
Meanwhile,petitionerMaximoSavellanopresentedevidenceinsupportofhisapplicationfortheissuanceofthewritsofpreliminaryprohibitoryandmandatoryinjunction.
Likewise,privaterespondentspresentedevidencetorefutetheissuanceofthewrit.Subsequently,theymovedthattheybegivenuntil20May1996withinwhichtofiletheir
FormalOfferofEvidence,whichthetrialcourtgranted.
On23May1996petitionerMaximoSavellanofiledanUrgentMotionprayingthattherightofprivaterespondentstopresentdocumentaryevidencebedeemedwaived.On7June
1996thelowercourtgrantedthemotion.Privaterespondentsthereaftermovedforreconsiderationbutitwasdenied.
Afteraconsiderationoftheevidencepresented,thetrialcourtissuedtheassailedOrderstatinginpartthatpetitionerSavellanohadclearlyestablishedhisrighttoapreliminary
prohibitoryandmandatoryinjunction.ThecourtheavilyreliedonSantosv.Court
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5Id.,pp.5758.

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ofAppeals6whichheldthatthegeneralruleprohibitingtheuseofinjunctiontotransferpossessionorcontrolofpropertyfromonepartytotheotherdoesnotobtainwhen(a)the
applicanthasclearlyestablishedhisrightsoverthedisputedproperty,and(b)thedefendantismerelyanintruder;or(c)wheretheactionseekstopreventapurchaseratanauction
salefrommolestingtherightsofadebtorscoownerwhoserightshavenotbeenaffectedbythesale.
UponfindingthatpetitionerMaximoSavellanowastheregisteredowneroftheproperty,thetrialcourtorderedtheissuanceofawritofPreliminaryProhibitoryandMandatory
Injunctionagainstprivaterespondents.
Forthwith,privaterespondentsmovedforreconsideration.TheyarguedagainsttheaccuracyandcorrectnessofEngr.Valenciasnarrativereportinasmuchas:(a)onlythe
monumentcheckwasusedinthesettingofthemonumentsandrelocationsurveyinviolationofSec.363oftheSurveyorsManualofthePhilippines;(b)Engr.Valencia
disregardedthenaturalboundariesinthesurvey,suchastheSusuginCreek;(c)thereportwasnotapprovedbytheExecutiveDirectorofRegionIVoftheDENR;and,(d)despite
seriousobjections,Engr.Valenciausedonlyoneofthethree(3)relativepositionsinplottingtheplansubmittedtothecourt. 7
On18October1996petitionerfiledanExParteMotionforReleaseandEnforcementofWritofInjunction,whichwasgrantedon22October1996.Inturn,on17February1997,
privaterespondentsfiledanOmnibusMotionprayingfortheimmediateresolutionoftheirmotionforreconsideration.Induetime,thelowercourtissuedanorderdenyingtheir
motion.
Onapetitionforreviewoncertiorarifiledafterinitiallyissuingarestrainingorder,theCourtofAppealsnullifiedtheOrderofthetrialcourtholdingthattheresolutiontovacate
grantedinthewritofpreliminaryinjunctionwaspatentlyerroneoussinceitpreemptedthedecisionthatwouldhavebeenrenderedbythelowercourtaftertrialonthemerits.The
appellatecourtfurtherheld
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6G.R.No.61218,23September1992,214SCRA162.
7SeeNote3,p.143.
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thattheconclusionthatprivaterespondentsweremeresquattersonMaximoSavellanospropertyshouldhavebeenthreshedoutnotinthehearingontheapplicationforissuance
ofawritofpreliminaryinjunctionbutaftertrialonthemerits.8
Failingtoobtainareconsideration,Savellanofiledthispetitionforreviewoncertiorariraisingissuesthat,infine,centeredonwhethercompellingreasonsexistedtojustifythe
trialcourtsgrantofpreliminaryprohibitoryandmandatoryinjunction.
Wefindthepetitiondevoidofmerit.Thewellsettledprinciple,buttressedbyalonglineofcases 9isthatinjunctions,asarule,willnotbegrantedtotakepropertyoutofthe
possessionorcontrolofonepartyandplaceitintothatofanotherwhosetitlehasnotbeenclearlyestablishedbylaw.InAngelaEstate,Inc.v.CourtofAppeals,10weheld
Injunctions,likeotherequitableremedies,willissueonlyattheinstanceofasuitorwhohassufficientinterestortitleintherightorpropertysoughttobeprotectedxxxxItis
alwaysagroundfordenyinginjunctionthatthepartyseekingithasinsufficienttitleorinteresttosustainit,andnoclaimtotheultimatereliefsoughtinotherwords,thathe
showsnoequityxxxxThecomplainantsrightortitle,moreover,mustbeclearandunquestioned,forequity,asarule,willnotlenditspreventiveaidbyinjunctionwherethe
complainantstitleorrightisdoubtfulordisputed.
Therationalefortheruleasenunciatedin Devesav.Arbes 11 isToholdotherwisewouldbetorenderpracticallyofnoeffecttheordinaryactions,andtheenforcementof
judgmentinsuchaction.Ifacom

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8Id.,p.41.
9Deluaov.Castel,No.L21906,24December1968,26SCRA474;Piov.Marcos,No.L27849,30April1974,56SCRA726;BuayanCattlev.Quintillan,No.L26970,19
March1984,128SCRA276;Riverav.Florendo,G.R.No.57586,8October1986,144SCRA643;Ortigas&Co.,Ltd.Partnershipv.Ruiz,No.L33952,9March1987,148
SCRA326;S&AGaisano,Inc.v.Hidalgo,G.R.No.80397,10December1990,192SCRA224.
10No.L27084,31July1968,24SCRA500(1968).
1113Phil.353(1909).
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plainantcouldsecurereliefbyinjunctionineverycasewherethedefendantisdoingorthreatensorisabouttodo,orisprocuringorsufferingtobedone,someactprobablyin
violationoftheplaintiffsrightsandcouldenforcethejudgmentgrantingtheinjunctionbythesummarycontemptproceedingsxxxxhewouldseldomelecttoenforcehisrights
insuchcasesbytheordinaryremedies,involvingastheydothedifficultyandoftentimesfruitlesslaborofenforcingjudgmentsobtainedthereinbyexecution.
Inthecasebeforeus,thepreliminaryprohibitoryandmandatoryinjunctionissuedbythetrialcourtpracticallygrantedthemainreliefprayedforevenbeforethehearingofthe
caseonthemeritsandsolelyonthebasisofanarrativereporttheaccuracyandvalidityofwhichareseriouslyquestionedbyprivaterespondents.Apunctiliousperusalofthe
recordsleadsustotheconclusionthattheaccuracyandvalidityofthereportareatbestdebatableandshouldbeventilatedduringthetrialonthemeritsbeforeadefinite
determinationcanbereached.Assuccinctlyputbytheappellatecourt,thereportcannotbethesolebasisofthecourttofinallyrulethatthepremisesoccupiedbythepetitioners
arewithinthesubjectpropertyownedbyprivaterespondent.12
Moreso,thepronouncementofthelowercourtinitsassailedOrdertotheeffectthatprivaterespondentsweremereintrudersorsquattersconstitutesaprejudgmentofthecase
andareversaloftheruleonburdenofproof,sinceitwouldassumethepropositionwhichpetitionerstillhastheburdenofproving.Suchconclusion,rightorwrong,couldonlybe
madeafterthepartieshavecompletedthepresentationoftheirrespectiveevidence.Inshort,suchafindingwaspremature.
Itshouldfurtherbenotedthatthelowercourtwasnotbeingaskedtorulewithfinalityontheissueofwhetherprivaterespondentswereindeedsquattingonpetitionersproperty,
butonlytodeterminetentativelyifpetitionerwasindeedentitledtotheissuanceofaninjunction.
AnentthelowercourtsrelianceonSantosv.CourtofAppeals,13wefinditmisplaced.True,wemadeapronouncementthat,excep
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12SeeNote1.
13SeeNote6.
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tionallyandasanequitableconcession,aninjunctionmaybegrantedtotakepropertyoutofthepossessionorcontrolofonepartyandplaceitintothatofanother;yet,itmustbe
pointedoutthatinthatcasethegovernmentstitletothepropertyhadbeenshowntobeclear,welldefinedandcertainandthattherewasanurgentneedforitsissuanceinorderto
preventsocialunrestinthecommunityforhavingbeendeprivedoftheuseandenjoymentofwatersfoundinthereservoirlocatedinthesubjectpremises. 14Incontrast,petitioner,
toourmind,hasnotclearlyestablishedhistitletothepropertyinquestionnorhasheclearlyshownthatprivaterespondentswereindeedmereintrudersorsquattersthereon.As
such,theexceptionenunciatedinSantosv.CourtofAppealsdoesnotapply.
Infine,petitionerhasnotmadeoutaclearcase,freefromanytaintofdoubtordispute,towarranttheissuanceofaprohibitorymandatoryinjunction.Itistruethathepossesses
certificatesoftitleinhisnamecoveringseveralparcelsoflandlocatedinSanMateo,Rizal.Butinasmuchasitrelatessolelytotheissuanceofawritofinjunction,theissueisnot
oneofownershipbut,ascorrectlynotedbytheappellatecourt,whetherornotthetitlesof(petitioner)coverthepremisesbeingoccupiedbythe(privaterespondents).

Privaterespondentsvigorouslymaintainthatthepropertybeingoccupiedbythemliesoutsideofthepropertycoveredbypetitionerscertificatesoftitle.Whileitmayhavebeen
desirableforthemtoproducecertificatesoftitleoverthepropertywhichtheyoccupy,theabsencethereofforpurposesoftheissuanceofthewritdoesnotmilitateagainstthem.
Andifthedefenseinterposedbythemissuccessfullyestablishedatthetrial,thecomplaintwillhavetobedismissed.
Theeffectofthepreliminaryprohibitoryandmandatoryinjunctionsissuedbythelowercourtistodisposeofthemaincasewithouttrial.Privaterespondentswillhavetobe
hurledoffintothestreets,theirhousesbuiltonthepremisesdemolishedandtheirplantingsdestroyedwithoutaffordingthemtheopportunitytoprovetheirrightofpossessionin
court.Inviewoftherightstobe
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14Id.,p.165
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affectedthroughtheissuanceofinjunctions,courtsshouldatbestberemindedthat(t)hereisnopowertheexerciseofwhichismoredelicatewhichrequiresgreatercaution,
deliberationandsounddiscretion,orwhichismoredangerousinadoubtfulcase,thantheissuingofaninjunction. 15
WHEREFORE,findingnoreversibleerrorintheDecisionsoughttobereviewed,theinstantpetitionisDENIED,andthe14November1997DecisionoftheCourtof
AppealsinCAG.R.SPNo.44320(nullifyingthe20June1996OrderoftheRTCBr.75,SanMateo,Rizal,grantingthewritofPreliminaryProhibitoryandMandatoryInjunction
againstprivaterespondentsNenadeGuzman,BendeGuzmanandCecilioCruzisAFFIRMED.
Forthwith,lettherecordsofthiscaseberemandedtothetrialcourtforfurtherproceedings.
SOORDERED.
Mendoza,QuisumbingandDeLeon,Jr.,JJ.,concur.
Buena,J.,Nopart,signatorytoCAdecision.
Petitiondenied,judgmentaffirmed.
Note.Thewritofinjunctionwasnotproperintheabsenceofanylegalrightonthepartofthepetitioners.( SuicoIndustrialCorporationvs.CourtofAppeals,301SCRA
212[1999])
o0o
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1528AmJur201.