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Santos v. Sps.

Lumbao (2007)
Maria -->Rita --> Sps. Lumbao
Facts:
Maria the grandmother of petitioners had a property, when she died the property went to her heirs including the
mother of the petitioners, Rita
In 1978, while the property was still undivided, Rita sold 107sqm to respondents, Sps. Lumbao. Their contract is
embodied in a document entitled Bilihan ng Lupa
The Lumbaos then took possession of the property and built a house on it. They are still presently occupying the
said property
When the Lumbaos demanded for a separate TCT from Rita, the latter responded that she could not provide yet due
to lack of partition agreement with her other co-heirs
In 1986, the heirs of Rita, who are the petitioners in this case executed a Deed of Extrajudicial Settlement
adjudicating to themselves the property sold to the Lumbaos
A new TCT was issued.
The heirs then mortgaged the property for P30K in favor of Julieta Esplana, the REM was annotated on the TCT
The Lumbaos filed a complaint for reconveyance with RTC Pasig
The Santoses filed an Answer alleging:
No sale between their mother Rita and the Lumbaos
Lack of cause of action due to failure to comply with RA 7160 or the Barangay Conciliation Law
RTC dismissed the Complaint for Reconveyance
CA reversed and ordered the Santoses to reconvey the property to the Lumbaos
WON: The complaint for reconveyance should be dismissed as the Lumbaos did not comply with the requirement for
Barangay Conciliation prior to filing of the complaint. Hence, the RTC did no acquire jurisdiction? NO
Held: Petitioners can no longer raise the defense of non-compliance with the barangay conciliation proceedings to seek the
dismissal of the complaint filed by the respondents Spouses Lumbao, because they already waived the said defense when
they failed to file a Motion to Dismiss
Sec. 408 or RA7160 (Katarungang Pambarangay) states that court of competent jurisdiction will not be prevented
from exercising its power of adjudication over the case before it, where the defendants failed to object to such
exercise of jurisdiction
True that prior recourse to barangay conciliation is a precondition to filing a complaint in court. However, noncompliance with barangay adjudication is not fatal in this case.
Specially because they did not file a Motion to Dismiss. Instead they filed an Answer seeking for affirmative reliefs.
Worse, petitioners actively participated in the trial of the case by presenting their own witness and by crossexamining the witnesses presented by the respondents Spouses Lumbao.
It is elementary that the active participation of a party in a case pending against him before a court is tantamount to
recognition of that courts jurisdiction and a willingness to abide by the resolution of the case which will bar said party
from later on impugning the courts jurisdiction

- Answer Judicial admissions NOT binding on party