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[G.R. No. 157451. December 16, 2005.

]
LETICIA VALMONTE ORTEGA, petitioner, vs . JOSEFINA C.
VALMONTE, respondent.
PANGANIBAN, J p:

Dates:
February 5, 1982 – marriage of Placido and Josefina
October 8, 1984 – Placido (testator) died.
June 15, 1983 – Execution of will by Placido
August 9, 1983 – Acknowledgement of the will

Facts:
 Placido Valmonte lived for a long time in the US until he finally reached retirement and
came home to the Philippine in 1980 where he lived in Makati owned by him in common
with his sister Ciriaca Valmonte.
 At the age of 80, Placido wed Josefina Cabansag who was then 28 years old and the
ceremony was solemnized by Judge Perfecto Laguio, Jr. on Feb. 5, 1982.
 In October 8, 1984, Placido died of a cause known as COR PULMONALE.
 June 15, 1983 – Placido executed a last will and testament in English and but was
acknowledged only on August 9, 1983.
 1st page of the will – contains the entire testamentary dispositions and a part of the
attestation clause. Signed by the testator at the bottom and by three instrumental
witnesses on the left hand margin.
 2nd page – continuation of the attestation clause and acknowledgement and was signed as
well by the witnesses.
 The important provisions of the will contain:
o That Placido, bequeaths to Josefina one half portion of the properties owned by
him, namely: Lot 4-A, Block 13 in Makati; 2-storey building standing on such
property.
o All the rest, residue and remainder of Placido’s real or personal properties ,
including his savings account be given to Josefina.
o Appointing Josefina as the sole executrix of such last will and testament.
 The allowance of the probate of such will was opposed by Leticia Ortega on the grounds
that: there was failure in alleging all the assets of the testator; there was failure in stating
the names, ages and residences of the heirs; the will was not executed and attested with;
the testator was mentally incapable of making a will at the time of execution; the will was
procured under duress; and that the signature was procured by fraud and also opposed the
appointment of Josefina alleging her want of understanding and integrity.
 Hearing: Josefina called as witnesses the Notary public of Atty Floro Sarmiento who
prepared the will and the three witnesses Eugenio Gomez, Feliza Gomez and Josie
Collado while the oppositor Leticia and her daughter testified.
 According to Josefina, She had no knowledge of the existence of the last will and testament
of her husband, but just serendipitously found it in his attache case after his death. The
testator never suffered mental infirmity because despite his old ageher husband was in good
health and that he was hospitalized only because of a cold but which eventually resulted in
his death
 The testimony of the Notary Public and the witnesses testified that Placido went to them
and requested for them to accompany him to the house of Atty Sarmiento purposely for
his intended will.
 While the Oppositor Leticia and her daughter said that the testator at the time was already
of unsound mind.
 TC: Disallowed probate on the following grounds: a. Non-compliance with the legal
solemnities and formalities in the execution and attestation of a will; and b. The mental
capacity of the testator at the time was then in an advanced senility.
 CA: Reversed the trial court and said that “sexual exhibitionism and unhygienic, crude
and impolite ways” did not make him a person of unsound mind.
 Hence, current petition.

Issues:
a. Whether the signature of Placido was procured by fraud and that there was no intention of
making such his last will and testament
b. Whether Placido had testamentary capacity at the time of execution of the will

Ruling:
A. No. Petitioner alleges that there is deception reflected in the varying dates of the
execution and the attestation of the will. The Court does not agree, the party challenging
the will bears the burden of proving the existence thereof at the time of execution.
Unfortunately, in this case, other than self-serving allegations from petitioner, no
evidence of fraud was presented.

Moreover, conflict between the dates appearing on the will does not invalidate the
document, because the law does not even require a notarial will be executed and
acknowledged on the same day.

B. Yes. Under Art 800, the law presumes every person is of sound mind and the burden of
proof is on the person who opposes the same. Under Art 799 as well, three things that the
testator must have to be considered of sound mind are: a. nature of the estate to be
disposed; b. the proper object of his bounty; and c. the character of the testamentary act.
In applying such test, Placido despite his age was able to identify the kinds of property he
owned and locations, and he was able to identify his wife as sole beneficiary.

Wherefore, petition denied and CA decision is affirmed.