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SPECIAL PROCEEDINGS CASE DIGESTS

1. San luis vs. San luis 514 SCRA 294 2/6/07

Facts:
The case involves the Estate of the Felicisimo T. San Luis, who was the former governor of the
Province of Laguna. During his lifetime, Felicisimo contracted three marriages. His first marriage was with
Virginia Sulit wherein he had 6 children. Virginia predeceased Felicisimo. The latter contracted a second
marriage with Mary Lee Corwin, an American, who later obtained a decree of divorce in the USA. Felicisimo
then contracted a third marriage with Felicidad San Luis.
When Felicisimo died, Felicidad sought the dissolution of their conjugal partnership assets and the
settlement of Felicisimo’s estate with the RTC of Makati. Respondent alleged that she is the widow of
Felicisimo; that, at the time of his death, the decedent was residing at New Alabang Village, Alabang, Metro
Manila.
Petitioner Rodolfo San Luis, 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. He alleged that the petition
should have been filed in the Province of Laguna because this was Felicisimo’s place of residence prior to
his death. The motion was denied.
An MR was filed. The case then was re-raffled to another branch due to the inhibition of the first
judge. The trial court ordered the parties to submit position papers and later gave a decision dismissing the
petition for letters of administration. It held that, at the time of his death, Felicisimo was the duly elected
governor and a resident of the Province of Laguna. Hence, the petition should have been filed in Sta. Cruz,
Laguna and not in Makati City.
The CA reversed the decision. The appellante court ruled that under Section 1, Rule 73 of the
Rules of Court, the term “place of residence” of the decedent, for purposes of fixing the venue of the
settlement of his estate, refers to the personal, actual or physical habitation, or actual residence or place of
abode of a person as distinguished from legal residence or domicile. It noted that although Felicisimo
discharged his functions as governor in Laguna, he actually resided in Alabang, Muntinlupa.

Issue:
Was the venue properly laid?

Held:
Yes. Under Section 1, Rule 73 of the Rules of Court, the petition for letters of administration of the
estate of Felicisimo should be filed in the Regional Trial Court of the province "in which he resides at the
time of his death." In the case of Garcia Fule v. Court of Appeals, the Court laid down the doctrinal rule
for determining the residence – as contra distinguished from domicile – of the decedent for purposes of
fixing the venue of the settlement of his estate:
The term “resides” connotes ex vi termini “actual residence” as distinguished from “legal residence
or domicile.” This term “resides,” like the terms “residing” and “residence,” is elastic and should be
interpreted in the light of the object or purpose of the statute or rule in which it is employed. In the
application of venue statutes and rules – Section 1, Rule 73 of the Revised Rules of Court is of
such nature – residence rather than domicile is the significant factor. Even where the statute uses
the word “domicile” still it is construed as meaning residence and not domicile in the technical
sense. Some cases make a distinction between the terms “residence” and “domicile” but as
generally used in statutes fixing venue, the terms are synonymous, and convey the same meaning
as the term “inhabitant.” In other words, “resides” should be viewed or understood in its popular
sense, meaning, the personal, actual or physical habitation of a person, actual residence or
place of abode. It signifies physical presence in a place and actual stay thereat. In this popular
sense, the term means merely residence, that is, personal residence,not legal residence or
domicile. Residence simply requires bodily presence as an inhabitant in a given place, while
domicile requires bodily presence in that place and also an intention to make it one’s domicile. No
particular length of time of residence is required though; however, the residence must be more than
temporary.
The Court find that Felicisimo was a resident of Alabang, Muntinlupa for purposes of fixing the venue
of the settlement of his estate. For purposes of fixing venue under the Rules of Court, the "residence" of a
person is his personal, actual or physical habitation, or actual residence or place of abode, which may not
necessarily be his legal residence or domicile provided he resides therein with continuity and
consistency. Hence, it is possible that a person may have his residence in one place and domicile in
another.
Consequently, the subject petition for letters of administration was validly filed in the Regional Trial
Court which has territorial jurisdiction over Alabang, Muntinlupa. The subject petition was filed on December
17, 1993. At that time, Muntinlupa was still a municipality and the branches of the Regional Trial Court of
the National Capital Judicial Region which had territorial jurisdiction over Muntinlupa were then seated in
Makati City as per Supreme Court Administrative Order No. 3. Thus, the subject petition was validly filed
before the Regional Trial Court of Makati City.

2. Garcia-Quiazon vs. Belen G.R. No. 189121, July 31, 2013

Venue In Settlement Of Estate of Deceased Persons


Facts:
Elise, then represented by her mother Ma. Lourdes, a natural child of Eliseo, who died without a
will on December 12, 1992, filed a Petition for Letter of Administration of the estate of Eliseo before the
Regional Trial Court of Las Pinas City. She also impugned the validity of his father’s marriage to Amelia.
According to her, the marriage was bigamous because at the time of his marriage to Amelia, there was a
prior and valid subsisting marriage of Eliseo to one Filipita Sandico. The petition was opposed by Amelia
and her children, Jenneth and Jennifer, who alleged that venue was improperly laid, as Eliseo died in
Capas, Tarlac as shown by his Death Certificate, the petition should have been filed there as it was his
residence at the time of his death. They also sought to discredit the factual and legal basis for any grant
of letters of administration in favour of Elise.
The RTC ruled that Elise, who by that time have already attained legal age, should be granted
letters of administration over the estate of Eliseo. It brushed aside Amelia’s objections over the venue of
the petition.
On appeal to the Court of Appeals, the CA denied Amelia’s petition, ruling that venue was properly
laid as it was shown that Eliseo resided and established residence at Las Pinas City from 1975 up to his
death in 1992.

Issue:
Whether the venue in the settlement of estate of a decedent was properly laid.
Held:
Yes. Under Section 1, Rule 73 of the Rules of Court, the petition for letters of administration of
the estate of a decedent should be filed in the RTC of the province where the decedent resides at the
time of his death:
Sec. 1. Where estate of deceased persons settled. – If the decedent is an inhabitant of the
Philippines at the time of his death, whether a citizen or an alien, his will shall be proved, or
letters of administration granted, and his estate settled, in the Court of First Instance [now
Regional Trial Court in the province in which he resides at the time of his death, and if he is an
inhabitant of a foreign country, the Court of First Instance [now Regional Trial Court] of any
province in which he had estate. The court first taking cognizance of the settlement of the estate
of a decedent, shall exercise jurisdiction to the exclusion of all other courts. The jurisdiction
assumed by a court, so far as it depends on the place of residence of the decedent, or of the
location of his estate, shall not be contested in a suit or proceeding, except in an appeal from that
court, in the original case, or when the want of jurisdiction appears on the record.

The term “resides” connotes ex vi termini “actual residence” as distinguished from “legal
residence or domicile.” This term “resides,” like the terms “residing” and “residence,” is elastic and should
be interpreted in the light of the object or purpose of the statute or rule in which it is employed. In the
application of venue statutes and rules – Section 1, Rule 73 of the Revised Rules of Court is of such
nature – residence rather than domicile is the significant factor. Even where the statute uses the word
“domicile” still it is construed as meaning residence and not domicile in the technical sense. Some cases
make a distinction between the terms “residence” and “domicile” but as generally used in statutes fixing
venue, the terms are synonymous, and convey the same meaning as the term “inhabitant.” In other
words, “resides” should be viewed or understood in its popular sense, meaning, the personal, actual or
physical habitation of a person, actual residence or place of abode. It signifies physical presence in
a place and actual stay thereat. Venue for ordinary civil actions and that for special proceedings have one
and the same meaning. As thus defined, “residence,” in the context of venue provisions, means nothing
more than a person’s actual residence or place of abode, provided he resides therein with continuity and
consistency.
Viewed in light of the foregoing principles, the Court of Appeals cannot be faulted for affirming the
ruling of the RTC that the venue for the settlement of the estate of Eliseo was properly laid in Las Piñas
City. It is evident from the records that during his lifetime, Eliseo resided at No. 26 Everlasting Road,
Phase 5, Pilar Village, Las Piñas City. For this reason, the venue for the settlement of his estate may be
laid in the said city.
xxx
“An “interested party,” in estate proceedings, is one who would be benefited in the estate, such as an
heir, or one who has a claim against the estate, such as a creditor. Also, in estate proceedings, the
phrase “next of kin” refers to those whose relationship with the decedent is such that they are entitled to
share in the estate as distributees. In the instant case, Elise, as a compulsory heir who stands to be
benefited by the distribution of Eliseo’s estate, is deemed to be an interested party. With the
overwhelming evidence on record produced by Elise to prove her filiation to Eliseo, the petitioners’
pounding on her lack of interest in the administration of the decedent’s estate, is just a desperate attempt
to sway this Court to reverse the findings of the Court of Appeals. Certainly, the right of Elise to be
appointed administratix of the estate of Eliseo is on good grounds. It is founded on her right as a
compulsory heir, who, under the law, is entitled to her legitime after the debts of the estate are
satisfied. Having a vested right in the distribution of Eliseo’s estate as one of his natural children, Elise
can rightfully be considered as an interested party within the purview of the law.”

3. Agtarap vs. Agtarap G.R. No. 177099

Facts:
Eduardo filed a petition for the judicial settlement of the estate of his deceased father Joaquin
Agtarap. The petition alleged that Joaquin died intestate. During his lifetime, Joaquin contracted two
marriages, first with Lucia Garcia and second with Caridad Garcia (Caridad). Joaquin had three children
with Lucia namely: Jesus (died without issue), Milagros, and Jose (survived by three children, namely,
Gloria, Joseph, and Teresa). Lucia died on 1924. In 1926, Joaquin married Caridad and the couple had
three children—Eduardo, Sebastian, and Mercedes (survived by her daughter Cecile).
Sebastian filed his comment, generally admitting the allegations in the petition, and conceding to
the appointment of Eduardo as special administrator. Joseph, Gloria, and Teresa filed their
answer/opposition. They alleged that the two subject lots belong to the conjugal partnership of Joaquin with
Lucia, and that, upon Lucia’s death in April 1924, they became the pro indiviso owners of the subject
properties. After the parties were given the opportunity to be heard and to submit their respective proposed
projects of partition, the RTC issued an order of partition.
Eduardo and Sebastian filed MR which was denied. On Appeal, the CA affirmed the RTCs decision.
Petitioners elevated the case to the SC. One of Sebastian’s arguments was the certificates of title of real
estate properties subject of the controversy are in the name of Joaquin Agtarap, married to Caridad Garcia,
and as such are conclusive proof of their ownership thereof, and thus, they are not subject to collateral
attack, but should be threshed out in a separate proceeding for that purpose. Also, Eduardo posited that
that the CA gravely erred when it affirmed that the bulk of the realties subject of this case belong to the first
marriage of Joaquin to Lucia, notwithstanding that the certificates of title were registered in the name of
Joaquin Agtarap casado con ("married to") Caridad Garcia. According to him, the RTC, acting as an
intestate court with limited jurisdiction, was not vested with the power and authority to determine questions
of ownership, which properly belongs to another court with general jurisdiction.

Issue:
Whether or not the RTC has jurisdiction to determine the question of ownership in this case.
Held:
Yes. The general rule is that the jurisdiction of the trial court, either as a probate or an intestate
court, relates only to matters having to do with the probate of the will and/or settlement of the estate of
deceased persons, but does not extend to the determination of questions of ownership that arise during the
proceedings. The patent rationale for this rule is that such court merely exercises special and limited
jurisdiction. As held in several cases, a probate court or one in charge of estate proceedings, whether
testate or intestate, cannot adjudicate or determine title to properties claimed to be a part of the estate and
which are claimed to belong to outside parties, not by virtue of any right of inheritance from the deceased
but by title adverse to that of the deceased and his estate. All that the said court could do as regards said
properties is to determine whether or not they should be included in the inventory of properties to be
administered by the administrator. If there is no dispute, there poses no problem, but if there is, then the
parties, the administrator, and the opposing parties have to resort to an ordinary action before a court
exercising general jurisdiction for a final determination of the conflicting claims of title.
However, this general rule is subject to exceptions as justified by expediency and convenience.
First, the probate court may provisionally pass upon in an intestate or a testate proceeding the
question of inclusion in, or exclusion from, the inventory of a piece of property without prejudice to the final
determination of ownership in a separate action.
Second, if the interested parties are all heirs to the estate, or the question is one of collation or
advancement, or the parties consent to the assumption of jurisdiction by the probate court and the rights of
third parties are not impaired, then the probate court is competent to resolve issues on ownership. Verily,
its jurisdiction extends to matters incidental or collateral to the settlement and distribution of the estate,
such as the determination of the status of each heir and whether the property in the inventory is conjugal
or exclusive property of the deceased spouse.
The Court held that the general rule does not apply to the instant case considering that the parties
are all heirs of Joaquin and that no rights of third parties will be impaired by the resolution of the ownership
issue. More importantly, the determination of whether the subject properties are conjugal is but collateral
to the probate court’s jurisdiction to settle the estate of Joaquin.

4. Emilia Suntay III vs. Isabel Cojuangco G.R. No. 183053

Doctrine: The law [of intestacy] is founded... on the presumed will of the deceased… Love, it is said, first descends, then
ascends, and finally. Spreads sideways.

Facts:
On June 4, 1990, the decedent, Cristina Aguinaldo-Suntay (Cristina), married to Dr. Federico
Suntay (Federico), died intestate. In 1979, their only son, Emilio Aguinaldo Suntay (Emilio I),
predeceased both Cristina and Federico. At the time of her death, Cristina was survived by her husband,
Federico, and several grandchildren, including herein petitioner Emilio A.M. Suntay III (Emilio III) and
respondent Isabel Cojuangco-Suntay.
Emilio I was married to Isabel Cojuangco, and they begot three children, namely: herein
respondent, Isabel; Margarita; and Emilio II. Emilio I’s marriage to Isabel Cojuangco was subsequently annulled.
Thereafter, Emilio I had two children out of wedlock, Emilio III and Nenita Suntay Tañedo (Nenita), by two
different women, Concepcion Mendoza and Isabel Santos, respectively. Consequently, respondent and
her siblings Margarita and Emilio II, lived with their mother on Balete Drive, Quezon City, separately from
their father and paternal grandparents.
Parenthetically, after the death of Emilio I, Federico filed a petition for visitation rights over his
grandchildren. It was altogether stopped because of a manifestation filed by respondent Isabel,
articulating her sentiments on the unwanted visits of her grandparents. After her spouse’s death, Federico, after
the death of his spouse, Cristina, or on September 27, 1993, adopted their illegitimate grandchildren, Emilio III
and Nenita.
On October 26, 1995, respondent filed a petition for the issuance of letters of administration in her
favor. Federico filed his opposition. Being the surviving spouse of Cristina, he is capable of administering
her estate and he should be the one appointed as its administrator; that as part owner of the mass of
conjugal properties left by Cristina, he must be accorded legal preference in the administration. After a
failed attempt by the parties to settle the proceedings amicably, Federico filed a Manifestation dated
March 13, 1999, nominating his adopted son, Emilio III, as administrator of the decedent’s estate on his behalf.
Subsequently, the trial court granted Emilio III’s Motion for Leave to Intervene considering his interest in the outcome
of the case. In the course of the proceedings, on November 13, 2000, Federico died.
The trial court rendered a decision on November 9, 2001, appointing herein petitioner, Emilio III, as
administrator of decedent Cristina’s intestate estate. What matters most at this time is the welfare of the estate of
the decedent in the light of such unfortunate and bitter estrangement. The Court honestly believes that to
appoint the petitioner would go against the wishes of the decedent who raised [Emilio III] from infancy in
her home in Baguio City as her own child. Certainly, it would go against the wishes of the surviving
spouse x x x who nominated [EmilioIII] for appointment as administrator.
Aggrieved, respondent filed an appeal before the CA, which reversed and set aside the decision
of the RTC, revoked the Letters of Administration issued to Emilio III. In marked contrast, the CA zeroed in on
Emilio III’s status as an illegitimate child of Emilio I and, thus, barred from representing his deceased father in
the estate of the latter’s legitimate mother, the decedent. That he cannot be appointed for the ff reasons:
i. The appointment of Emilio III was subject to a suspensive condition, i.e., Federico’s
appointment as administrator of the estate
ii. As between the legitimate offspring (respondent) and illegitimate offspring (Emilio III) of
decedent’s son, Emilio I, respondent is
preferred, being the "next of kin" referred to by Section 6, Rule 78 of the Rules of Court
iii. Jurisprudence has consistently held that Article 992 of the Civil Code
bars the illegitimate child from inheriting ab intestato from the legitimatechildren and relati
ves of his father or mother.
Issue:
1. In the appointment of an Administrator of the Estate under section 6 of Rule 78 of the Rules
of Court lists the order of preference in the appointment of an administrator of an estate;
whether Article 992 of the Civil Code applies referred to as the iron curtain bar rule.
2. Whether Emilio III and respondent, is better qualified to act as administrator of the decedent’s
estate.

Held:
1. Counsel for petitioner meticulously argues that Article 992 of the Civil Code, the successional
bar between the legitimate and illegitimate relatives of a decedent, does not apply in this instance where
facts indubitably demonstrate the contrary Emilio III, an illegitimate grandchild of the decedent, was actually
treated by the decedent and her husband as their own son, reared from infancy, educated and trained in
their businesses, and eventually legally adopted by decedents husband, the original oppositor to
respondents petition for letters of administration.
The Court is not unmindful of the critiques of civilists of a conflict and a lacuna in the law concerning
the bone of contention that is Article 992 of the Civil Code, beginning with the eminent Justice J.B.L. Reyes:
In the Spanish Civil Code of 1889 the right of representation was admitted only within the
legitimate family; so much so that Article 943 of that Code prescribed that an illegitimate
child cannot inherit ab intestato from the legitimate children and relatives of his father and
mother. The Civil Code of the Philippines apparently adhered to this principle since it
reproduced Article 943 of the Spanish Code in its own Art. 992, but with fine inconsistency,
in subsequent articles (990, 995 and 998) our Code allows the hereditary portion of the
illegitimate child to pass to his own descendants, whether legitimate or illegitimate. So that
while Art. 992 prevents the illegitimate issue of a legitimate child from representing him in
the intestate succession of the grandparent, the illegitimates of an illegitimate child can
now do so. This difference being indefensible and unwarranted, in the future revision of the
Civil Code we shall have to make a choice and decide either that the illegitimate issue
enjoys in all cases the right of representation, in which case Art. 992 must be suppressed;
or contrariwise maintain said article and modify Articles 995 and 998. The first solution
would be more in accord with an enlightened attitude vis--vis illegitimate children.
Manresa explains the basis for the rules on intestate succession:
The law [of intestacy] is founded on the presumed will of the deceased. Love, it is said, first
descends, then ascends, and, finally, spreads sideways. Thus, the law first calls the descendants,
then the ascendants, and finally the collaterals, always preferring those closer in degree to those
of remoter degrees, on the assumption that the deceased would have done so had he manifested
his last will. Lastly, in default of anyone called to succession or bound to the decedent by ties of
blood or affection, it is in accordance with his presumed will that his property be given to charitable
or educational institutions, and thus contribute to the welfare of humanity.

Indeed, the factual antecedents of this case accurately reflect the basis of intestate succession, i.e.,
love first descends, for the decedent, Cristina, did not distinguish between her legitimate and illegitimate
grandchildren. Neither did her husband, Federico, who, in fact, legally raised the status of Emilio III from an
illegitimate grandchild to that of a legitimate child. The peculiar circumstances of this case, painstakingly
pointed out by counsel for petitioner, overthrow the legal presumption in Article 992 of the Civil Code that
there exist animosity and antagonism between legitimate and illegitimate descendants of a deceased.

2. Nonetheless the Court, pointed out that judicial restraint impels them to refrain from making a
final declaration of heirship and distributing the presumptive shares of the parties in the estates of Cristina
and Federico, considering that the question on who will administer the properties of the long deceased
couple has yet to be settled.
The Court holding in Capistrano v. Nadurata on the same issue remains good law:
[T]he declaration of heirs made by the lower court is premature, although the evidence
sufficiently shows who are entitled to succeed the deceased. The estate had hardly been
judicially opened, and the proceeding has not as yet reached the stage of distribution of
the estate which must come after the inheritance is liquidated. Section 1, Rule 90 of the
Rules of Court does not depart from the foregoing admonition:

Sec. 1. When order for distribution of residue is made. x x x. If there is a


controversy before the court as to who are the lawful heirs of the deceased person
or as to the distributive shares to which each person is entitled under the law, the
controversy shall be heard and decided as in ordinary cases.

No distribution shall be allowed until the payment of the obligations above


mentioned has been made or provided for, unless the distributees, or any of them,
give a bond, in a sum to be fixed by the court, conditioned for the payment of said
obligations within such time as the court directs.

The Court in the settlement of the intestate estate of Cristina Aguinaldo-Suntay stated that the
attendant facts and circumstances of the case necessitate, at the least, a joint administration by both
respondent and Emilio III of their grandmother’s, Cristina’s, estate. It explained that the subject estate
in the case calls to the succession other putative heirs, including another illegitimate grandchild of
Cristina and Federico, Nenita Tañedo, but who was likewise adopted by Federico, and the two (2) siblings
of respondent Isabel, Margarita and Emilio II. In all, considering the conflicting claims of the putative heirs,
and the unliquidated conjugal partnership of Cristina and Federico which forms part of their respective
estates, the Court was impelled to move in only one direction, i.e., joint administration of the subject
estate.
In her "Motion to Resolve Respondent Isabel Cojuangco-Suntay's Motion For Reconsideration"
(Motion To Resolve) dated 11 July 2011, respondent Isabel Cojuangco mentioned that petitioner
Emilio A.M. Suntay III, at the time that he was administrator of the estate of Cristina Aguinaldo
Suntay, "did not file an inventory of the assets xxx until 14 November 2002" and "the inventory
that was submitted, did not include several properties of the decedent" and that properties
belonging to the decedent "have found their way to different individuals or persons; several
properties to Federico Suntay himself," while "some properties have found their way to Emilio
A.M. Suntay III, petitioner in this case; by reason of falsified documents'' as specified in
paragraphs 2, 3, 4 and 5 of the Motion To Resolve.

5. Lee vs. RTC of QC 423 SCRA 497

Facts:
The case involves the estate of Dr. Juvencio Ortanez. In the middle of the squabble are two
factions; his wife (Juliana Salgado Ortañez), three legitimate children (Rafael, Jose and Antonio Ortañez)
and five illegitimate children by Ligaya Novicio (herein private respondent Ma. Divina Ortañez-Enderes and
her siblings Jose, Romeo, Enrico Manuel and Cesar, all surnamed Ortañez).
During the intestate proceedings, Rafael and Jose were appointed as special administrators. In
compliance with court’s order, they submitted an inventory which included 2,029 shares of stock in
Philippine International Life Insurance Company (hereafter Philinterlife), representing 50.725% of the
company’s outstanding capital stock.
Juliana claiming that she owned 1,014 of the shares, sold the same to with right to repurchase to
petitioner Filipino Loan Assistance Group (FLAG), represented by its president, herein petitioner Jose C.
Lee. Juliana Ortañez failed to repurchase the shares of stock within the stipulated period, thus ownership
thereof was consolidated by petitioner FLAG in its name. The remaining 1011 shares, which Jose claimed
to be his was also sold to FLAG under the same terms. Ownership was likewise consolidated to FLAG after
Jose failed to repurchase the shares. It appears that years before the intestate proceedings, Juliana and
her two children entered into a memorandum of agreement for the extrajudicial settlement of the estate of
Dr. Juvencio Ortañez, partitioning the estate (including the Philinterlife shares of stock) among themselves.
This was the basis of the sale for the sale of the shares.
. Divina Ortañez–Enderes and her siblings a motion for appointment of special administrator of
Philinterlife shares of stock which was granted and the court appointed her as special administratrix. She
then moved to declare void ab initio the memorandum of agreement and also, to declare as void ab initio
the deeds of sale of the shares. The trial court, CA and SC all declared the nullity of the sale. The decision
became final and executor.
Enderes filed a motion for execution which was granted by the intestate court but petitioners
ignored the same. Petitioners then filed a petition for certiorari before the CA alleging that the intestate court
gravely abused its discretion in (1) declaring that the ownership of FLAG over the Philinterlife shares of
stock was null and void; (2) ordering the execution of its order declaring such nullity and (3) depriving the
petitioners of their right to due process. The petition was dismissed outright. Hence this petition for review
under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court.

Issue:
Whether the order of the intestate court nullifying the sale of the shares of stock is valid?
Held:
Yes. An heir can sell his right, interest, or participation in the property under administration under
Art. 533 of the Civil Code which provides that possession of hereditary property is deemed transmitted to
the heir without interruption from the moment of death of the decedent.20 However, an heir can only alienate
such portion of the estate that may be allotted to him in the division of the estate by the probate or intestate
court after final adjudication, that is, after all debtors shall have been paid or the devisees or legatees shall
have been given their shares.21 This means that an heir may only sell his ideal or undivided share in the
estate, not any specific property therein. In the present case, Juliana Ortañez and Jose Ortañez sold
specific properties of the estate (1,014 and 1,011 shares of stock in Philinterlife) in favor of petitioner FLAG.
This they could not lawfully do pending the final adjudication of the estate by the intestate court because of
the undue prejudice it would cause the other claimants to the estate, as what happened in the present case.
It being settled that property under administration needs the approval of the probate court before it
can be disposed of, any unauthorized disposition does not bind the estate and is null and void. As early as
1921 in the case of Godoy vs. Orellano (42 Phil 347), We laid down the rule that a sale by an administrator
of property of the deceased, which is not authorized by the probate court is null and void and title does not
pass to the purchaser.
There is hardly any doubt that the probate court can declare null and void the disposition of the
property under administration, made by private respondent, the same having been effected without
authority from said court. It is the probate court that has the power to authorize and/or approve the sale
(Section 4 and 7, Rule 89), hence, a fortiori, it is said court that can declare it null and void for as long as
the proceedings had not been closed or terminated. To uphold petitioner’s contention that the probate court
cannot annul the unauthorized sale, would render meaningless the power pertaining to the said court.
(Bonga vs. Soler, 2 SCRA 755).
Our jurisprudence is therefore clear that (1) any disposition of estate property by an administrator
or prospective heir pending final adjudication requires court approval and (2) any unauthorized disposition
of estate property can be annulled by the probate court, there being no need for a separate action to annul
the unauthorized disposition.
6. Ruiz vs. CA, Pilar Ruiz 252 SCRA 541 1/29/1996 Heirs of Hilario

Facts:
Hilario Ruiz executed a holographic will naming his only son Edmond Ruiz, his adopted daughter,
Maria Pilar Ruiz Montes, and his three granddaughters, all children of Edmond Ruiz. Edmond was named
executor. Hilario Ruiz died. Without probating the will, Edmond and other respondents cause the
distribution of the cash component of the estate. It was private respondent Maria Pilar Ruiz Montes who
filed a petition for the probate and approval of Hilario Ruiz's will and for the issuance of letters testamentary
to Edmond Ruiz. Edmond opposed the petition
One of the properties of the estate located at Valle Verde, Pasig was leased out by Edmond. Said
property was bequeathed to Maria Cathryn, one of the granddaughters. The probate court ordered Edmond
to deposit with the Branch Clerk of Court the rental deposit and payments totalling P540,000.00
representing the one-year lease of the Valle Verde property.
Edmond withdrew his opposition and the will was admitted to probate. Petitioner Testate Estate of
Hilario Ruiz, with Edmond Ruiz as executor, filed an "Ex-Parte Motion for Release of Funds." It prayed for
the release of the rent payments deposited with the Branch Clerk of Court. Respondent Montes opposed
the motion. The probate court denied petitioner’s motion and ordered the release the rent payments to the
decedent's three granddaughters. It further ordered the delivery of the titles to and possession of the
properties bequeathed to the three granddaughters and respondent Montes upon the filing of a bond.
Petitioner filed an MR. Petitioner then made a manifestation withdrawing his motion for the release of the
funds in view of the fact that the lease contract over the Valle Verde property had been renewed for another
year.
The probate court ordered the release of the funds to Edmond but only "such amount as may be
necessary to cover the expenses of administration and allowances for support" of the testator's three
granddaughters subject to collation and deductible from their share in the inheritance. The case was
elevated to the CA but the latter affirmed the probate court’s decision.

Issue:
Whether the probate court, after admitting the will to probate but before payment of the estate's
debts and obligations, has the authority:

(1) to grant an allowance from the funds of the estate for the support of the testator's grandchildren;
(2) to order the release of the titles to certain heirs; and
(3) to grant possession of all properties of the estate to the executor of the will.

Held:
(1) Grandchildren are not entitled to allowance. It is settled that allowances for support under
Section 3 of Rule 83 should not be limited to the "minor or incapacitated" children of the deceased. Article
188 of the Civil Code of the Philippines, the substantive law in force at the time of the testator's death,
provides that during the liquidation of the conjugal partnership, the deceased's legitimate spouse and
children, regardless of their age, civil status or gainful employment, are entitled to provisional support from
the funds of the estate. The law is rooted on the fact that the right and duty to support, especially the right
to education, subsist even beyond the age of majority. Be that as it may, grandchildren are not entitled to
provisional support from the funds of the decedent's estate. The law clearly limits the allowance to "widow
and children" and does not extend it to the deceased's grandchildren, regardless of their minority or
incapacity. It was error, therefore, for the appellate court to sustain the probate court's order granting an
allowance to the grandchildren of the testator pending settlement of his estate.
(2) the order for the release of the titles was also wrong. (citing sec. 2 rule 109 & sec. 1 rule 90 )
In settlement of estate proceedings, the distribution of the estate properties can only be made: (a) after all
the debts, funeral charges, expenses of administration, allowance to the widow, and estate tax have been
paid; or (b) before payment of said obligations only if the distributees or any of them gives a bond in a sum
fixed by the court conditioned upon the payment of said obligations within such time as the court directs, or
when provision is made to meet those obligations.
In the case at bar, the probate court ordered the release of the titles to the Valle Verde property
and the Blue Ridge apartments to the private respondents after the lapse of six months from the date of
first publication of the notice to creditors. The questioned order speaks of "notice" to creditors, not payment
of debts and obligations. Hilario Ruiz allegedly left no debts when he died but the taxes on his estate had
not hitherto been paid, much less ascertained. The estate tax is one of those obligations that must be paid
before distribution of the estate. If not yet paid, the rule requires that the distributees post a bond or make
such provisions as to meet the said tax obligation in proportion to their respective shares in the
inheritance. Notably, at the time the order was issued the properties of the estate had not yet been
inventoried and appraised.
(3) No. Petitioner must be reminded that his right of ownership over the properties of his father is
merely inchoate as long as the estate has not been fully settled and partitioned. As executor, he is a mere
trustee of his father's estate. The funds of the estate in his hands are trust funds and he is held to the duties
and responsibilities of a trustee of the highest order. He cannot unilaterally assign to himself and possess
all his parents' properties and the fruits thereof without first submitting an inventory and appraisal of all real
and personal properties of the deceased, rendering a true account of his administration, the expenses of
administration, the amount of the obligations and estate tax, all of which are subject to a determination by
the court as to their veracity, propriety and justness.

7. Unionbank vs. Santibanez 452 SCRA 228

Facts:
Efraim Santibanez entered into two contracts of loan with First Countryside Credit Corporation
(FCCC) wherein promissory notes were executed. The purpose of the loans was for the payment of tractors
bought by Efraim. In one of the two promissory notes, Edmund, son of Efraim was a co-signatory.
Efraim died leaving a holographic will. Testate proceedings was commenced. Edmund was
appointed special administrator. During the pendency of the testate proceedings, the surviving heirs,
Edmund and his sister Florence Santibañez Ariola, executed a Joint Agreement dated July 22, 1981,
wherein they agreed to divide between themselves and take possession of the three (3) tractors; that is,
two (2) tractors for Edmund and one (1) tractor for Florence. Each of them was to assume the indebtedness
of their late father to FCCC, corresponding to the tractor respectively taken by them.
A Deed of Assignment with Assumption of Liabilities was executed by and between FCCC and
Union Savings and Mortgage Bank, wherein the FCCC as the assignor, among others, assigned all its
assets and liabilities to Union Savings and Mortgage Bank.
When the loans became due, demand letters were sent to Edmund but the latter refused to pay.
Thus, petitioner filed a complaint for collection of sum of money against Edmund and Florence.
In Florence’s Answer, she alleged that the loan documents did not bind her since she was not a
party thereto. Considering that the joint agreement signed by her and her brother Edmund was not approved
by the probate court, it was null and void; hence, she was not liable to the petitioner under the joint
agreement. The trial court dismissed the complaint explaining that the action should have been filed against
the Estate. Petitioner appealed to the CA but the trial court’s decision was affirmed in toto. Hence this
petition before the SC.

Issue:
Whether the claim should have been filed against the estate?

Held:
Yes. The Court notes that the loan was contracted by the decedent. The petitioner, purportedly a
creditor of the late Efraim Santibañez, should have thus filed its money claim with the probate court in
accordance with Section 5, Rule 86 of the Revised Rules of Court, which provides:

Section 5. Claims which must be filed under the notice. If not filed barred; exceptions. — All claims
for money against the decedent, arising from contract, express or implied, whether the same be
due, not due, or contingent, all claims for funeral expenses for the last sickness of the decedent,
and judgment for money against the decedent, must be filed within the time limited in the notice;
otherwise they are barred forever, except that they may be set forth as counterclaims in any action
that the executor or administrator may bring against the claimants. Where an executor or
administrator commences an action, or prosecutes an action already commenced by the deceased
in his lifetime, the debtor may set forth by answer the claims he has against the decedent, instead
of presenting them independently to the court as herein provided, and mutual claims may be set
off against each other in such action; and if final judgment is rendered in favor of the defendant,
the amount so determined shall be considered the true balance against the estate, as though the
claim had been presented directly before the court in the administration proceedings. Claims not
yet due, or contingent, may be approved at their present value.

The filing of a money claim against the decedent’s estate in the probate court is mandatory. As we
held in the vintage case of Py Eng Chong v. Herrera:
… This requirement is for the purpose of protecting the estate of the deceased by informing the
executor or administrator of the claims against it, thus enabling him to examine each claim and to determine
whether it is a proper one which should be allowed. The plain and obvious design of the rule is the speedy
settlement of the affairs of the deceased and the early delivery of the property to the distributees, legatees,
or heirs. `The law strictly requires the prompt presentation and disposition of the claims against the
decedent's estate in order to settle the affairs of the estate as soon as possible, pay off its debts and
distribute the residue.
Perusing the records of the case, nothing therein could hold private respondent Florence S. Ariola
accountable for any liability incurred by her late father. The documentary evidence presented, particularly
the promissory notes and the continuing guaranty agreement, were executed and signed only by the late
Efraim Santibañez and his son Edmund. As the petitioner failed to file its money claim with the probate
court, at most, it may only go after Edmund as co-maker of the decedent under the said promissory notes
and continuing guaranty, of course, subject to any defenses Edmund may have as against the petitioner.
As the court had not acquired jurisdiction over the person of Edmund, we find it unnecessary to delve into
the matter further.
(Note: The agreement of the heirs was declared void because it was an act of partition. Their
agreement cannot defeat the will of the decedent which said that all his properties shall be proportionately
divided by his children. “We agree with the appellate court that the above-quoted is an all-encompassing
provision embracing all the properties left by the decedent which might have escaped his mind at that time
he was making his will, and other properties he may acquire thereafter. Included therein are the three (3)
subject tractors. This being so, any partition involving the said tractors among the heirs is not valid. The
joint agreement executed by Edmund and Florence, partitioning the tractors among themselves, is invalid,
specially so since at the time of its execution, there was already a pending proceeding for the probate of
their late father’s holographic will covering the said tractors.”)

8. Heirs of the Late Spouses Maglasang v. Manila Banking Corp. 706 SCRA 235, September 23, 2013

Facts:
Maglasang obtained a credit line from MBC secured by REM. When Flaviano Maglasang died, his
son Edgar was appointed as atty-in- fact by Flaviano’s heirs. He filed a petition for letters of administration
of Flaviano’s intestate estate w/c the probate court granted. Court issued a Notice to Creditors for filing of
money claims against the estate. MBC notified the court of its claim. When Court terminated the
proceedings and executed an extra-judicial partition over the properties, the loan obligations owed to MBC
remained unsatisfied though the court recognized the rights of MBC to foreclose the mortgage. MBC extra-
judicially foreclosed the mortgage; however, after auction sale, a deficiency remained on Maglasangs’
obligation. Thus, it filed a suit to recover the deficiency.
RTC ruled in their favor so Maglasangs appealed to CA contending that under Remedies available
to Manila Banking Corp. under Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC are alternative and exclusive, such that the election
of one operates as a waiver of the others and since MBC filed a claim in the probate court, it has abandoned
its right to foreclose the property and is barred from recovering any deficiency. CA denied the appeal and
contended that Act. 3135 applies w/c allows MBC to extra-judicially foreclose and recover the deficiency.

Flaviano Maglasang died intestate. Thus, his widow Salud Maglasang and their surviving children, herein
petitioners, appointed their brother petitioner Edgar Maglasang as their attorney-in- fact. On Mar. 30,
1977: Edgar filed a verified petition for letters of administration of the intestate estate of Flaviano before
CFI of Leyte,Ormoc City (probate court). CFI-probate court (Aug. 9, 1977): Granted petition appointing
Edgar as the administrator of Flaviano’s estate. CFI-probate court (Aug. 30, 1977): In view of the
issuance of letters of administration, probate court issued a Notice to Creditors for the filing of money
claims against Flaviano’s estate. As one of the creditors of Flaviano, Manila Banking Corp. notified the
probate court of its claim for P382,753.19 (as of Oct. 11,1978, exclusive of interests and charges). During
the pendency of the intestate proceedings, Edgar and Oscar were able to obtain several loans from
Manila Banking Corp. secured by promissory notes which they signed. CFI-probate court (Dec. 14, 1978):
Terminated the proceedings with the surviving heirs, executing an extra-judicial partition of the properties
of Flaviano’s estate. Loan obligations owed by the estate to Manila Banking Corp., however, remained
unsatisfied due to Manila Banking Corp.’s certification that Flaviano’s account was undergoing a
restructuring. Nonetheless, probate court expressly recognized the rights of Manila Banking Corp. under
the mortgage and promissory notes executed by the Sps. Maglasang, specifically, its “right to foreclose
the same within the statutory period.” Manila Banking Corp. proceeded to extra-judicially foreclose the
mortgage covering the Sps. Maglasang’s properties and emerged as the highest bidder at the public
auction for P350k done at Ormoc City. There, however, remained a deficiency on Sps. Maglasang’s
obligation to Manila Banking Corp. June 24, 1981: Manila Banking Corp. filed a suit to recover the
deficiency of P250,601.05 as of May 31, ‘81 against the estate of Flaviano, his widow Salud and their
children.
RTC-former probate court (Apr. 6, 1987): Directed the Maglasangs to pay Manila Banking Corp.
jointly and severally,P434,742.36 representing the deficiency of the former’s total loan obligation to the
latter after the extra-judicial foreclosure of the REM with interest at the rate of 12% p.a., plus a 4% penalty
charge, reckoned from Sept. 5, 1984 until fully paid + attys. fees (10%of the outstanding obligation)
Maglasangs elevated the case to CA on appeal, contending that: Remedies available to Manila
Banking Corp. under Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC are alternative and exclusive, such that the election of one
operates as a waiver or abandonment of the others. When Manila Banking Corp. filed its claim against
the estate of Flaviano in the proceedings before the probate court, it effectively abandoned its right to
foreclose on the mortgage. Even on the assumption that it has not so waived its right to foreclose, it is
nonetheless barred from filing any claim for any deficiency amount. July 25, ‘97: During the pendency of
the appeal, Flaviano’s widow, Salud, passed away.
CA (July 20, 2005): Denied Maglasangs’ appeal and affirmed RTC’s Decision. Probate court
erred when it closed and terminated the intestate proceedings (as seen in its Dec. 14, ‘78 Order) without
first satisfying the claims of the creditors of the estate (ie. Manila Banking Corp.) in violation of Sec. 1,
Rule 90 of Rule of Court. As a consequence, Manila Banking Corp. was not able to collect from the
Maglasangs and thereby was left with the option of foreclosing the real estate mortgage. Sec. 7, Rule 86
of ROC does not apply since the case does not involve a mortgage made by the administrator over any
property belonging to the estate of the decedent pursuant to PNB v CA. Act No. 3135 (“An Act to
Regulate the Sale of Property under Special Powers inserted or annexed to Real-Estate Mortgages”) is
applicable which entitles Manila Banking Corp. to claim the deficiency amount after the extra-judicial
foreclosure of the real estate mortgage of Sps. Maglasang’s properties. Maglasang’s MR was
subsequently denied; hence, this petition for review on certiorari by Heirs of Sps. Maglasang. It is not Act
No. 3135 but Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC which applies in this case. (same claims as that raised in CA). The
extra-judicial foreclosure of the subject properties was null and void, not having been conducted in the
capital of the Province of Leyte in violation of the stipulations in the real estate mortgage contract.

Issue:
1) Whether or not the CA erred in affirming the RTC’s award of the deficiency amount in favor of
Manila Banking Corporation? (YES)[corollarily, Whether Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC and not Act.
3135 applies in this case? (Both apply concordantly)]
2) Whether extrajudicial foreclosure of the subject properties was null and void? (NO)

Held:
The Court held that MBC had a right to extra-judicially foreclose the property but it cannot recover
the deficiency. Both Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC and Act. 3135 apply complementarily in the case at bar.
Foreclosure under the 3rd remedy in Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC includes extrajudicial foreclosure under Act.
3135. However, upon choosing said remedy, creditor waives his right to recover the deficiency. When MBC
sought to extra-judicially foreclose the mortgage of the properties previously belonging to Sps. Maglasang
and it therefore, availed of the third option waiving its right to recover the deficiency.

Doctrine: There are 3 remedies/options by secured creditor under Sec. 7, Rule 86:
(a) waive the mortgage and claim the entire debt from the estate of the mortgagor as an
ordinaryclaim;
(b) foreclose the mortgage judicially and prove the deficiency as an ordinary claim; and
(c) rely on the mortgage exclusively, or other security and foreclose the same before it is barred
by prescription, without the right to file a claim for any deficiency. These may be ALTERNATIVELY
adopted for the satisfaction of his indebtedness. However, these remedies are distinct, independent and
mutually EXCLUSIVE from each other; the election of one effectively BARS the exercise of the others.
Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC lays down the options for the secured creditor to claim against the estate and,
according to jurisprudence, the availment of the 3rd option BARS HIM FROM CLAIMING ANY
DEFICIENCY amount. After 3rd option is chosen (under Sec. 7,Rule 86), the procedure governing the
manner in which the extra-judicial foreclosure should proceed would still be governed by the provisions of
Act No. 3135.

The petition is partly meritorious.


Ratio:
(1) Both Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC and Act. 3135 apply complementarily in the case at bar. Foreclosure
under the 3 rd remedy in Sec. 7,Rule 86 of ROC includes extrajudicial foreclosure under Act. 3135.
However, upon choosing said remedy, creditor waives his right torecover the deficiency.
Claims against deceased persons should be filed during the settlement proceedings of their estate.
Such proceedings areprimarily governed by special rules found under Rules 73 to 90 of the Rules,
although rules governing ordinary actions may, asfar as practicable, apply suppletorily
Among these special rules, Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC provides the rule in dealing with secured claims
against the estate.
Sec. 7, Rule 86 of ROC: Mortgage debt due from estate. – A creditor holding a claim against the
deceased secured by a mortgage or other collateral security, may abandon the security and
PROSECUTE his claim in the manner provided in this rule, and share in the general distribution of the
assets of the estate; OR he may FORECLOSE his mortgage or realize upon his security, by ACTION in
court, making the executor or administrator a party defendant, and if there is a judgment for a deficiency,
after the sale of the mortgaged premises, or the property pledged, in the foreclosure or other proceeding
to realize upon the security, he may CLAIM HIS DEFICIENCY judgment in the manner provided in the
preceding section; OR he may rely upon his mortgage or other security alone, and FORECLOSE the
same at any time within the period of the statute of limitations, and in that event he shall not be admitted
as a creditor, and shall receive no share in the distribution of the other assets of the estate; but nothing
herein contained shall prohibit the executor or administrator from redeeming the property mortgaged or
pledged, by paying the debt for which it is held as security, under the direction of the court, if the court
shall adjudged it to be for the best interest of the estate that such redemption shall be made.
COVERAGE OF THE RULE: The rule speaks of “A creditor holding a claim against the deceased
secured by a mortgage or other collateral security”, thus it covers all secured claims, whether by
mortgage or any other form of collateral, which a creditor may enforce against the estate of the deceased
debtor. It does not narrowly apply only to mortgages made by the administrator over any property
belonging to the estate of the decedent (as claimed by CA). Note though that mortgages of estate
property executed by the administrator are also governed by Rule 89, captioned as “Sales, Mortgages,
and Other Encumbrances of Property of Decedent.”
PNB v. CA relied by CA did not limit the scope of the rule as it only stated that Sec. 7, Rule 86 equally
applies to cases where the administrator mortgages the property of the estate to secure the loan he
obtained. It was a ruling of inclusion and not one which created a distinction.
Thus, Sec. 7, Rule 86 applies to: A creditor’s claim against the mortgaged property of the deceased
debtor, as in this case AND mortgages made by the administrator, as that in the PNB case.

3 Remedies/Options by Secured Creditor under Sec. 7, Rule 86


(a) waive the mortgage and claim the entire debt from the estate of the mortgagor as an ordinary claim;
(b) foreclose the mortgage judicially and prove the deficiency as an ordinary claim; and
(c) rely on the mortgage exclusively, or other security and foreclose the same before it is barred by
prescription, without the right tofile a claim for any deficiency
RULE: These may be ALTERNATIVELY adopted for the satisfaction of his indebtedness. However,
these remedies are distinct, independent and mutually EXCLUSIVE from each other; the election of one
effectively BARS the exercise of the others.
Bank of America v. American Realty Corporation (w/ respect to real properties): In our jurisdiction, the
remedies available to the mortgage creditor are deemed ALTERNATIVE and not cumulative. Notably, an
election of one remedy operates as a WAIVER of the other.

When Remedy Deemed Elected by Mortgage Creditor


o JUDICIAL FORECLOSURE: Upon the filing of the suit for collection OR upon the filing of the complaint
in an action for foreclosure of mortgage, pursuant to Rule 68 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure.
o EXTRAJUDICIAL FORECLOSURE: Upon filing of the petition not with any court of justice but with the
Office of the Sheriff of the province where the sale is to be made, in accordance with the provisions of Act
No. 3135, as amended by Act No.4118.

Third Option includes Extrajudicial Foreclosure


Third remedy includes the option of extra-judicially foreclosing the mortgage under Act No. 3135, as
availed of by Manila Banking Corp. in this case.

Under Extrajudicial Foreclosure by Creditor: No right to Deficiency


However, the plain result of adopting the last mode of foreclosure is that the creditor waives his right to
recover any deficiency from the estate.
PNB v CA case, citing Perez v. PNB which overturned earlier Pasno v. Ravina ruling:
o Perez v. PNB reversing Pasno vs. Ravina: After examination, we observe that the dissenting opinion in
our ruling in Pasno v. Ravina is more in conformity with reason and law.

3 rd remedy to wit: (3) to rely on the mortgage exclusively, foreclosing the same at any time before it is
barred by prescription, without right to file a claim for any deficiency,
Majority opinion in Pasno v. Ravina, in requiring a judicial foreclosure, virtually wipes out the 3rd
alternative conceded by the Rules to the mortgage creditor, and which would precisely include extra-
judicial foreclosures by contrast with the 2nd alternative.
o The plain result of adopting the last mode of foreclosure is that the creditor waives his right to recover
any deficiency from the estate.
o Following the Perez ruling that the 3rd mode includes extrajudicial foreclosure sales, the result of extra-
judicial foreclosure is that the creditor waives any further deficiency claim.

Act. 3135 vs. Sec. 7, Rule 86: In Tandem


Operation of Act No. 3135 does not entirely discount the application of Sec. 7, Rule 86, or vice-versa.
Act. 3135 vs. Sec. 7, Rule 86: In Tandem
Operation of Act No. 3135 does not entirely discount the application of Sec. 7, Rule 86, or vice-versa.
Rather, the 2 complement each other within their respective spheres of operation. Sec. 7, Rule 86, ROC
Act. No. 3135Lays down the options for the secured creditor to claim againstthe estate and, according to
jurisprudence, the availment of the3rd option bars him from claiming any deficiency amount.
After 3rd option is chosen (under Sec. 7, Rule 86), the procedure governing the manner in which the
extra-judicial foreclosure should proceed would still be governed by the provisions of Act No.
3135.Governs the parameters and the extent to which a claim maybe advanced against the estate Sets
out the specific procedure to be followed when the creditor subsequently chooses the 3rd option –
specifically, that of extra-judicially foreclosing real property belonging to the estate.
The application of the procedure under Act No. 3135 must be concordant with Sec. 7, Rule 86 as the
latter is a special rule applicable to claims against the estate.
At the same time, since Sec. 7, Rule 86 does not detail the procedure for extra-judicial foreclosures, the
formalities governing the manner of availing of the 3rd option – such as the place where the application
for extra-judicial foreclosure is filed, the requirements of publication and posting and the place of sale –
must be governed by Act No. 3135.
Case at Bar
Manila Banking Corp. sought to extra-judicially foreclose the mortgage of the properties previously
belonging to Sps. Maglasang and, therefore, availed of the third option. Thus, it is now precluded from
filing a suit to recover any deficiency amount as earlier discussed.
It did not exercise the first option of directly filing a claim against the estate, as Heirs of Maglasang
assert, since it merely notified the probate court of the outstanding amount of its claim against the estate
of Flaviano and that it was currently restructuring the account. (sinama ko lang yung footnote pero di
relevant; ‘yung nakabold ata yung dapat ginawa ng Manila Banking Corp. parasabihing 1st option)
o FOOTNOTE: Manila Banking Corp. did not file a claim against the estate since its notice deviates from
the proper characterization under Sec. 9, Rule 86 of ROC which sets forth the manner through which a
claim against the estate maybe filed:
o A claim may be filed by delivering the same with the necessary vouchers to the clerk of court and by
serving a copy thereof on the executor or administrator.
o If the claim be founded on a bond, bill, note, or any other instrument, the original need not be filed, but a
copy thereof with all indorsements shall be attached to the claim and filed therewith.
On demand, however, of the executor or administrator, or by order of the court or judge, the original
shall be exhibited, unless it be lost or destroyed, in which case the claimant must accompany his claim
with affidavit or affidavits containing a copy or particular description of the instrument and stating its loss
or destruction. When the claim is due, it must be supported by affidavit stating the amount justly due, that
no payments have been made thereon which are not credited, and that there are no offsets to the same,
to the knowledge of the affiant.
o If the claim is not due, or is contingent, when filed, it must also be supported by affidavit stating the
particulars thereof.
o When the affidavit is made by a person other than the claimant, he must set forth therein the reason
why it is not made bythe claimant.
o The claim once filed shall be attached to the record of the case in which the letters testamentary or of
administration wereissued, although the court, in its discretion, and as a matter of convenience, may
order all the claims to be collected in aseparate folder.
(2) Extra-judicial foreclosure is valid. (di masyado related sa topic but read na din)
Heirs of Maglasang: Extra-judicial foreclosure of the subject properties was null and void since the
same was conducted inviolation of the stipulation in the REM contract stating that the auction sale should
be held in the capital of the province where the properties are located, i.e., Province of Leyte (Tacloban
City sabi sa baba-capital ba ‘to ng Leyte?).
o STIPULATION: It is hereby agreed that in case of foreclosure of this mortgage under Act 3135, the
auction sale shall be held at the capital of the province if the property is within the territorial jurisdiction of
the province concerned, OR shall be held in the city if the property is within the territorial jurisdiction of the
city concerned.
SC: Disagrees. The stipulation under the REM contract lacks words of exclusivity which would bar any
other acceptable forawherein the said sale may be conducted. Absent such qualifying or restrictive words
to indicate the exclusivity of the agreed forum,the stipulated place should only be as an additional, not a
limiting venue.
The venue then would be alternative between that stated in the law or rule governing the action or the
one agreed in the contract.Thus, the stipulated venue and that provided under Act No. 3135 can be
applied alternatively.
Sec. 2 of Act No. 3135 allows the foreclosure sale to be done within the province where the property to
be sold is situated.
SEC. 2 of Act No. 3135: Said sale cannot be made legally outside of the province which the property
sold is situated; and in casethe place within said province in which the sale is to be made is subject to
stipulation, such sale shall be made in said place or inthe municipal building of the municipality in which
the property or part thereof is situated.
Case at Bar: Auction sale was conducted in Ormoc City, which is within the territorial jurisdiction of the
Province of Leyte, thus there is sufficient compliance with the above-cited requirement.

SUMMARY
Extra-judicial foreclosure subject of this case was properly conducted in accordance with the formalities
of Act No. 3135. The same was a valid exercise of Manila Banking's third option under Section 7,
Rule 86.
Manila Banking cannot, however, file any suit to recover any deficiency amount since it effectively
waived its right thereto when it chose to avail of extra-judicial foreclosure as jurisprudence instructs.
DISPOSITIVE: Petition PARTLY GRANTED. The complaint for the recovery of the deficiency amount
after extra-judicial foreclosure filed by Manila Banking Corporation DISMISSED. The extra-judicial
foreclosure of the mortgaged properties, however, stands.

9. Pilapil vs. Heirs of Maximino Briones 514 SCRA 197

Facts:
Petitioners are the heirs of of the late Donata Ortiz-Briones (Donata), consisting of her surviving
sister, Rizalina; Rizalina’s daughter Erlinda Pilapil; and the other nephews and nieces of Donata, in
representation of her 2 other sisters who had passed away. Respondents, on the other hand, are the heirs
of the late Maximino Briones, composed of his nephews and nieces, and grandnephews and grandnieces,
in representation of the deceased siblings of Maximo.
Maximino and Donata are married but they were not blessed with children. Maximino died. Donata
instituted intestate proceedings to settle her husband’s estate. The CFI issued Letters of Administration
appointing Donata as the administratrix of Maximino’s estate. Then, the CFI issued an order, awarding
ownership of the aforementioned real properties to Donata. Donata had the said CFI Order recorded in the
Primary Entry Book of the Register of Deeds, and by virtue thereof, received new TCTs, covering the said
properties, now in her name.
When Donata died, Erlinda Pilapil, one of Donata’s nieces, instituted with the RTC a petition for the
administration of the intestate estate of Donata. Erlinda and her husband, Gregorio, were appointed by the
RTC as administrators of Donata’s intestate estate. Thereafter, Silverio Briones (Silverio), a nephew of
Maximino, filed a Petition with the RTC for Letters of Administration for the intestate estate of Maximino.
But then, Gregorio filed with the RTC a Motion to Set Aside the Order, claiming that the said properties
were already under his and his wife’s administration as part of the intestate estate of Donata. Silverio’s
Letters of Administration for the intestate estate of Maximino was subsequently set aside by the RTC.
The heirs of Maximino filed a Complaint with the RTC against the heirs of Donata for the partition,
annulment, and recovery of possession of real property. They later filed an Amended Complaint on
December 11, 1992. They alleged that Donata, as administratrix of the estate of Maximino, through fraud
and misrepresentation, in breach of trust, and without the knowledge of the other heirs, succeeded in
registering in her name the real properties belonging to the intestate estate of Maximino.
The RTC ruled in favour of the heirs of Maximino but was reversed by the CA. The case reached
the SC and the court upheld the CA’s decision. Petitioners filed an MR.

Issue:
Whether the non-participation of the heirs of Maximino in the intestate proceeding of Maximino’s
estate would warrant the partition, annulment and recovery of possession of real properties awarded to
Donata.

Held:
No. While it is true that since the CFI was not informed that Maximino still had surviving siblings
and so the court was not able to order that these siblings be given personal notices of the intestate
proceedings, it should be borne in mind that the settlement of estate, whether testate or intestate, is a
proceeding in rem, and that the publication in the newspapers of the filing of the application and of the date
set for the hearing of the same, in the manner prescribed by law, is a notice to the whole world of the
existence of the proceedings and of the hearing on the date and time indicated in the publication. The
publication requirement of the notice in newspapers is precisely for the purpose of informing all interested
parties in the estate of the deceased of the existence of the settlement proceedings, most especially those
who were not named as heirs or creditors in the petition, regardless of whether such omission was
voluntarily or involuntarily made.
Although Donata may have alleged before the CFI that she was her husband’s sole heir, it was not
established that she did so knowingly, maliciously and in bad faith, so as for this Court to conclude that she
indeed committed fraud. This Court again brings to the fore the delay by which respondents filed the
present case, when the principal actors involved, particularly, Donata and Maximino’s siblings, have already
passed away and their lips forever sealed as to what truly transpired between them. On the other hand,
Special Proceedings No. 928-R took place when all these principal actors were still alive and each would
have been capable to act to protect his or her own right to Maximino’s estate. Letters of Administration of
Maximino’s estate were issued in favor of Donata as early as 8 July 1952, and the CFI Order in question
was issued only on 15 January 1960. The intestate proceedings for the settlement of Maximino’s estate
were thus pending for almost eight years, and it is the burden of the respondents to establish that their
parents or grandparents, Maximino’s surviving siblings, had absolutely no knowledge of the said
proceedings all these years.

10. Sabidong vs. Solas A.M. No. P-01-1448, June 25, 2013
Facts:
Trinidad Sabidong, complainant’s mother, is one of the long time occupants of a parcel of land,
designated as Lot 11 originally registered in the name of C. N. Hodges and situated at Jaro, Iloilo City. The
Sabidongs are in possession of one-half portion of Lot 11 of the said Hodges Estate, as the other half-
portion was occupied by Priscila Saplagio. In 1983 ejectment suit however Saplagio was ordered to
vacate the portion of Lot 11 leased to her. In 1984, respondent who was the Clerk of Court III of MTCC,
Branch 3, Iloilo City Offered to Purchase on installment Lots 11 and 12. The Administratrix of the Hodges
Estate rejected respondent’s because the actual occupant of Lot 12 manifested their intention to buy it. He
was nevertheless informed that he may file an offer to purchase Lot 11 "should the occupant fail to avail of
the priority given to them” which the respondent immediately made. The probate court (Regional Trial Court
of Iloilo, Branch 27) in Special Proceedings No.1672 ("Testate Estate of the Late Charles Newton
Hodges, Rosita R. Natividad, Administratrix"), approved the offer upon the court’s observation that the
occupants of the subject lots "have not manifested their desire to purchase the lots they are occupying up
to this date and considering time restraint and considering further, that the sales in favor of the xx x offerors
are most beneficial to the estate x x x". Consequently the title of the lot was transferred to the respondent.
Later on a writ of demolition was issued by the probate court in favor of respondent and against all adverse
occupants of Lot 11. In 1999, a complaint was initiated against the respondent in the Supreme Court
alleging the prohibition for court personnel to buy properties in litigation. The complaint likewise alleged
that the respondent committed deception, dishonesty, oppression and grave abuse of authority.
It was alleged that complainant and his family were made to believe by the respondent that he is the
representative of the Estate. The complainant relied on the representations of the respondent that
he was authorized to facilitate the sale, with more reason that respondent represented himself as the City
Sheriff.

Issue:
Whether or not the respondent is prohibited to purchase the property subject of probate.
Held:
NO. For the prohibition to apply, the sale or assignment of the property must take place
during the pendency of the litigation involving the property. Where the property is acquired after the
termination of the case, no violation of paragraph 5, Article 1491 of the Civil Code attaches.

Court Ruling:
Article 1491, paragraph 5 of the Civil Code prohibits court officers such as clerks of court from
acquiring property involved in litigation within the jurisdiction or territory of their courts. Said provision
reads: Article 1491. The following persons cannot acquire by purchase, even at a public or judicial
auction, either in person or through the mediation of another: x x x x (5) Justices, judges, prosecuting
attorneys, clerks of superior and inferior courts, and other officers and employees connected with the
administration of justice, the property and rights in litigation or levied upon an execution before the court
within whose jurisdiction or territory they exercise their respective functions; this prohibition includes the
act of acquiring by assignment and shall apply to lawyers, with respect to the property and rights which
may be the object of any litigation in which they may take part by virtue of their profession. x x x x
(Emphasis supplied.)
The rationale advanced for the prohibition is that public policy disallows the transactions in view
of the fiduciary relationship involved, i.e., the relation of trust and confidence and the peculiar control
exercised by these persons. “In so providing, the Code tends to prevent fraud, or more precisely, tends
not to give occasion for fraud, which is what can and must be done.” For the prohibition to apply, the sale
or assignment of the property must take place during the pendency of the litigation involving the property.
Where the property is acquired after the termination of the case, no violation of paragraph 5, Article 1491
of the Civil Code attaches.35 In the case at bar, when respondent purchased Lot 11-A on November 21,
1994, the Decision in Civil Case No. 14706 which was promulgated on May 31, 1983 had long become
final. Be that as it may, it cannot be said that the property is no longer “in litigation” at that time
considering that it was part of the Hodges Estate then under settlement proceedings (Sp. Proc. No.
1672). A thing is said to be in litigation not only if there is some contest or litigation over it in court, but
also from the moment that it becomes subject to the judicial action of the judge. A property forming part of
the estate under judicial settlement continues to be subject of litigation until the probate court issues an
order declaring the estate proceedings closed and terminated.
The rule is that as long as the order for the distribution of the estate has not been complied with,
the probate proceedings cannot be deemed closed and terminated. The probate court loses jurisdiction of
an estate under administration only after the payment of all the debts and the remaining estate delivered
to the heirs entitled to receive the same. Since there is no evidence to show that Sp. Proc. No. 1672 in
the RTC of Iloilo, Branch 27, had already been closed and terminated at the time of the execution of the
Deed of Sale With Mortgage dated November 21, 1994, Lot 11 is still deemed to be “in litigation” subject
to the operation of Article 1491 (5) of the Civil Code.
This notwithstanding, the Court hold that the sale of Lot 11 in favor of respondent did not violate
the rule on disqualification to purchase property because Sp. Proc. No. 1672 was then pending before
another court (RTC) and not MTCC where he was Clerk of Court.
The Court finds respondent Nicolasito S. Solas, retired Clerk of Court IV, Municipal Trial Court in
Cities, Iloilo City, LIABLE FOR GRAVE MISCONDUCT AND DISHONESTY. Misconduct is a
transgression of some established and definite rule of action, more particularly, unlawful behavior as well
as gross negligence by a public officer. To warrant dismissal from service, the misconduct must be grave,
serious, important, weighty, momentous and not trifling. The misconduct must imply wrongful intention
and not a mere error of judgment. The misconduct must also have a direct relation to and be connected
with the performance of the public officer’s official duties amounting either to maladministration or willful,
intentional neglect, or failure to discharge the duties of the office. Dishonesty is the “disposition to lie,
cheat, deceive, defraud or betray; untrustworthiness; lack of integrity; lack of honesty, probity, or integrity
in principle; and lack of fairness and straightforwardness.” In this case, respondent deceived
complainant’s family who were led to believe that he is the legal representative of the Hodges Estate, or
at least possessed of such power to intercede for overstaying occupants of the estate’s properties like
complainant. Boasting of his position as a court officer, a City Sheriff at that, complainant’s family
completely relied on his repeated assurance that they will not be ejected from the premises. Upon
learning that the lot they were occupying was for sale and that they had to negotiate for it through
respondent, complainant’s family readily gave the amounts he demanded and, along with Saplagio,
complied with the requirements for a loan application with PAG-IBIG. All the while and unknown to
complainant’s family, respondent was actually working to acquire Lot 11 for himself. Thus, while
respondent was negotiating with the Hodges Estate for the sale of the property to him, he collected as
down payment P5,000 from complainant’s family in July 1986. Four months later, on November 18, 1986,
the probate court approved respondent’s offer to purchase Lot 11. The latter received further down
payment from complainant in the amount of P10,000 between 1992 and 1993, or before the Deed of Sale
with Mortgage41 dated November 21, 1994 could be executed in respondent’s favor.
More importantly, Section 4(c) of Republic Act No. 671350 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical
Standards for Public Officials and Employees mandates that public officials and employees shall remain
true to the people at all times. They must act with justness and sincerity and shall not discriminate against
anyone, especially the poor and the underprivileged. They shall at all times respect the rights of others,
and shall refrain from doing acts contrary to law, good morals, good customs, public policy, public order,
public safety and public interest. Under Section 52, 51 Rule IV of the Uniform Rules on Administrative
Cases in the Civil Service, dishonesty and grave misconduct are classified as grave offenses with the
corresponding penalty of dismissal for the first offense. Section 58(a) states that the penalty of dismissal
shall carry with it the cancellation of eligibility, forfeiture of retirement benefits, and the perpetual
disqualification for reemployment in the government service. Section 53 further provides that mitigating
circumstances attendant to the commission of the offense should be considered in the determination of
the penalty to be imposed on the erring government employee. However, no such mitigating
circumstance had been shown.
Since respondent had compulsorily retired from service on September 10, 2007, 007, for this
additional administrative case he should be fined in an amount equivalent to his salary for six months
which shall likewise be deducted from his retirement benefits.

11. Aranas vs. Mercado, 713 SCRA 194, January 15, 2014, G.R. No. 156407

Facts:
Emigdio S. Mercado (Emigdio) died intestate on January 12, 1991, survived by his second
wife,Teresita V. Mercado (Teresita), and their five children, namely: Allan V. Mercado, Felimon
V.Mercado, Carmencita M. Sutherland, Richard V. Mercado, and Maria Teresita M. Anderson; and his
two children by his first marriage, namely: respondent Franklin L. Mercado and petitioner Thelma M.
Aranas (Thelma). Emigdio and Teresita were married before 1988 and so, their property regime is
governed by the conjugal partnership of gains. During the lifetime of Emigdio, he inherited and acquired
real properties from her deceased mother. He owned corporate shares in Mervir Realty Corporation
(Mervir Realty) and Cebu Emerson Transportation Corporation (Cebu Emerson). He assigned his real
properties in exchange for corporate stocks of Mervir Realty, and sold his real property in Badian, Cebu
(Lot 3353 covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. 3252) to Mervir Realty and such deed of
assignments were executed days before he died. Thelma then petitioned the RTC in Cebu City for the
appointment of Teresita as administrator of Emigdio’s estate. Following an order from the court, Teresita filed
an inventory of the properties left by the deceased but excluded therefrom the properties mentioned to
have been already assigned to Mervir Realty. Thelma moved that the list of inventory be amended to
include all the properties of the deceased even if already assigned. The trial court issued an order that
mandates Teresita to re-do the inventory made. Teresita appealed to the CA to which the CA ruled in her
favour.

Issue:
Whether the properties that had already been assigned to Mervir Realty should be included in the
inventory of the administrator of the estate considering the fact that the same were conjugal properties of
the deceased and his surviving spouse.
Held:
Yes, the properties, even though assigned to Mervir Realty should be included in the inventory for
the settlement of the estate of the deceased.
The prevailing rule is that for the purpose of determining whether a certain property should or
should not be included in the inventory, the probate court may pass upon the title thereto but such
determination is not conclusive and is subject to the final decision in a separate action regarding
ownership which may be instituted by the parties). To the same effect was De Leon v. Court of
Appeals, where the Court declared that a “probate court, whether in a testate or intestate proceeding, can
only pass upon questions of title provisionally,” and reminded, citing Jimenez v. Court of Appeals, that the
“patent reason is the probate court’s limited jurisdiction and the principle that questions of title or
ownership, which result in inclusion or exclusion from the inventory of the property, can only be settled in
a separate action.” The Court pointed out: All that the said court could do as regards the said properties
is determine whether they should or should not be included in the inventory or list of properties to be
administered by the administrator. If there is a dispute as to the ownership, then the opposing
parties and the administrator have to resort to an ordinary action for a final determination of the
conflicting claims of title because the probate court cannot do so.
―xxx with Emigdio and Teresita having been married prior to the effectivity of the Family Code in August 3, 1988, their
property regime was the conjugal partnership of gains. For purposes of the settlement of Emigdio’s estate, it
was unavoidable for Teresita to include his shares in the conjugal partnership of gains. The party asserting that
specific property acquired during that property regime did not pertain to the conjugal partnership of gains
carried the burden of proof, and that party must prove the exclusive ownership by one of them by clear,
categorical, and convincing evidence.
In the absence of or pending the presentation of such proof, the conjugal partnership of Emigdio
and Teresita must be provisionally liquidated to establish who the real owners of the affected properties
were, and which of the properties should form part of the estate of Emigdio. The portions that pertained to
the estate of Emigdio must be included in the inventory. Moreover, although the title over Lot 3353 was
already registered in the name of Mervir Realty, the RTC made findings that put that title in dispute. Civil
Case No. CEB–12692, a dispute that had involved the ownership of Lot 3353, was resolved in favor of
the estate of Emigdio, and Transfer Certificate of Title No. 3252 covering Lot 3353 was still in Emigdio’s name. Indeed,
the RTC noted in the order of March 14, 2001, or ten years after his death, that Lot 3353 had remained
registered in the name of Emigdio.

Civil Law; Succession

The assailed order of March 14, 2001 denying Teresita’s motion for the approval of the inventory and the
order dated May 18, 2001 denying her motion for reconsideration were interlocutory. This is because the
inclusion of the properties in the inventory was not yet a final determination of their ownership. Hence, the
approval of the inventory and the concomitant determination of the ownership as basis for inclusion
or exclusion from the inventory were provisional and subject to revision at anytime during the
course of the administration proceedings.

Remedial Law; Civil Procedure

An appeal would not be the correct recourse for Teresita, et al. to take against the assailed orders. The
final judgment rule embodied in the first paragraph of Section 1, Rule 41, Rules of Court, which also
governs appeals in special proceedings, stipulates that only the judgments, final orders (and
resolutions) of a court of law “that completely disposes of the case, or of a particular matter therein
when declared by these Rules to be appealable” may be the subject of an appeal in due course. The
same rule states that an interlocutory order or resolution (interlocutory because it deals with preliminary
matters, or that the trial on the merits is yet to be held and the judgment rendered) is expressly made non-
appealable.

Remedial Law; Civil Procedure

Multiple appeals are permitted in special proceedings as a practical recognition of the possibility
that material issues may be finally determined at various stages of the special proceedings. Section
1, Rule 109 of the Rules of Court enumerates the specific instances in which multiple appeals may be
resorted to in special proceedings, viz.: Section 1. Orders or judgments from which appeals may be taken.—
An interested person may appeal in special proceedings from an order or judgment rendered by a Court of
First Instance or a Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, where such order or judgment: (a) Allows or
disallows a will; (b) Determines who are the lawful heirs of a deceased person, or the distributive share of
the estate to which such person is entitled; (c) Allows or disallows, in whole or in part, any claim against the
estate of a deceased person, or any claim presented on behalf of the estate in offset to a claim against it;
(d) Settles the account of an executor, administrator, trustee or guardian; (e) Constitutes, in proceedings
relating to the settlement of the estate of a deceased person, or the administration of a trustee or guardian,
a final determination in the lower court of the rights of the party appealing, except that no appeal shall be
allowed from the appointment of a special administrator; and (f) Is the final order or judgment rendered in
the case, and affects the substantial rights of the person appealing, unless it be an order granting or denying
a motion for a new trial or for reconsideration.
Civil Law; Succession;

Under Section 6(a), Rule 78 of the Rules of Court, the letters of administration may be granted at
the discretion of the court to the surviving spouse, who is competent and willing to serve when the
person dies intestate. Upon issuing the letters of administration to the surviving spouse, the RTC becomes
duty-bound to direct the preparation and submission of the inventory of the properties of the estate, and the
surviving spouse, as the administrator, has the duty and responsibility to submit the inventory within three
months from the issuance of letters of administration pursuant to Rule 83 of the Rules of Court.

Civil Law; Succession;

The objective of the Rules of Court in requiring the inventory and appraisal of the estate of the
decedent is “to aid the court in revising the accounts and determining the liabilities of the executor
or the administrator, and in making a final and equitable distribution (partition) of the estate and
otherwise to facilitate the administration of the estate.” Hence, the RTC that presides over the
administration of an estate is vested with wide discretion on the question of what properties should be
included in the inventory. According to Peralta v. Peralta, 71 Phil. 66 (1940), the CA cannot impose its
judgment in order to supplant that of the RTC on the issue of which properties are to be included or excluded
from the inventory in the absence of “positive abuse of discretion,” for in the administration of the estates
of deceased persons, “the judges enjoy ample discretionary powers and the appellate courts should not
interfere with or attempt to replace the action taken by them, unless it be shown that there has been a
positive abuse of discretion.” As long as the RTC commits no patently grave abuse of discretion, its orders
must be respected as part of the regular performance of its judicial duty.

Remedial Law; Civil Procedure;

There is no dispute that the jurisdiction of the trial court as an intestate court is special and
limited. The trial court cannot adjudicate title to properties claimed to be a part of the estate but are claimed
to belong to third parties by title adverse to that of the decedent and the estate, not by virtue of any right of
inheritance from the decedent. All that the trial court can do regarding said properties is to determine
whether or not they should be included in the inventory of properties to be administered by the administrator.
Such determination is provisional and may be still revised.

Remedial Law; Evidence;

The fact that the deed of absolute sale executed by Emigdio in favor of Mervir Realty was a notarized
instrument did not sufficiently justify the exclusion from the inventory of the properties involved. A notarized
deed of sale only enjoyed the presumption of regularity in favor of its execution, but its notarization
did not per se guarantee the legal efficacy of the transaction under the deed, and what the contents
purported to be. The presumption of regularity could be rebutted by clear and convincing evidence to the
contrary. As the Court has observed in Suntay v. Court of Appeals: x x x. Though the notarization of the
deed of sale in question vests in its favor the presumption of regularity, it is not the intention nor the function
of the notary public to validate and make binding an instrument never, in the first place, intended to have
any binding legal effect upon the parties thereto. The intention of the parties still and always is the primary
consideration in determining the true nature of a contract.

Civil Law; Land Titles;

The fact that the properties were already covered by Torrens titles in the name of Mervir Realty could not
be a valid basis for immediately excluding them from the inventory in view of the circumstances admittedly
surrounding the execution of the deed of assignment. This is because: The Torrens system is not a mode
of acquiring titles to lands; it is merely a system of registration of titles to lands. However, justice
and equity demand that the titleholder should not be made to bear the unfavorable effect of the mistake or
negligence of the State’s agents, in the absence of proof of his complicity in a fraud or of manifest damage
to third persons. The real purpose of the Torrens system is to quiet title to land and put a stop forever to
any question as to the legality of the title, except claims that were noted in the certificate at the time of
registration or that may arise subsequent thereto. Otherwise, the integrity of the Torrens system shall
forever be sullied by the ineptitude and inefficiency of land registration officials, who are ordinarily presumed
to have regularly performed their duties.

Civil Law; Succession;

Article 1061 of the Civil Code required every compulsory heir and the surviving spouse, herein
Teresita herself, to “bring into the mass of the estate any property or right which he (or she) may
have received from the decedent, during the lifetime of the latter, by way of donation, or any other
gratuitous title, in order that it may be computed in the determination of the legitime of each heir,
and in the account of the partition.” Section 2, Rule 90 of the Rules of Court also provided that any
advancement by the decedent on the legitime of an heir “may be heard and determined by the court having
jurisdiction of the estate proceedings, and the final order of the court thereon shall be binding on the person
raising the questions and on the heir.” Rule 90 thereby expanded the special and limited jurisdiction of the
RTC as an intestate court about the matters relating to the inventory of the estate of the decedent by
authorizing it to direct the inclusion of properties donated or bestowed by gratuitous title to any compulsory
heir by the decedent.

Civil Law; Succession;

The determination of which properties should be excluded from or included in the inventory of
estate properties was well within the authority and discretion of the RTC as an intestate court. In
making its determination, the RTC acted with circumspection, and proceeded under the guiding policy that
it was best to include all properties in the possession of the administrator or were known to the administrator
to belong to Emigdio rather than to exclude properties that could turn out in the end to be actually part of
the estate. As long as the RTC commits no patent grave abuse of discretion, its orders must be respected
as part of the regular performance of its judicial duty. Grave abuse of discretion means either that the
judicial or quasi-judicial power was exercised in an arbitrary or despotic manner by reason of passion or
personal hostility, or that the respondent judge, tribunal or board evaded a positive duty, or virtually refused
to perform the duty enjoined or to act in contemplation of law, such as when such judge, tribunal or board
exercising judicial or quasi-judicial powers acted in a capricious or whimsical manner as to be equivalent
to lack of jurisdiction.

Issue

Did the CA properly determine that the RTC committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or
excess of jurisdiction in directing the inclusion of certain properties in the inventory notwithstanding that
such properties had been either transferred by sale or exchanged for corporate shares in Mervir Realty by
the decedent during his lifetime?

Court Ruling

The prevailing rule is that for the purpose of determining whether a certain property should or should not
be included in the inventory, the probate court may pass upon the title thereto but such determination
is not conclusive and is subject to the final decision in a separate action regarding ownership which
may be instituted by the parties).

To the same effect was De Leon v. Court of Appeals, where the Court declared that a “probate court,
whether in a testate or intestate proceeding, can only pass upon questions of title provisionally,” and
reminded, citing Jimenez v. Court of Appeals, that the “patent reason is the probate court’s limited
jurisdiction and the principle that questions of title or ownership, which result in inclusion or exclusion from
the inventory of the property, can only be settled in a separate action.” Indeed, in the cited case
ofJimenez v. Court of Appeals,20 the Court pointed out:
All that the said court could do as regards the said properties is determine whether they should or should
not be included in the inventory or list of properties to be administered by the administrator. If there is a
dispute as to the ownership, then the opposing parties and the administrator have to resort to an
ordinary action for a final determination of the conflicting claims of title because the probate court
cannot do so.
Assuming that only seven titled lots were the subject of the deed of assignment of January 10, 1991, such
lots should still be included in the inventory to enable the parties, by themselves, and with the assistance
of the RTC itself, to test and resolve the issue on the validity of the assignment. The limited jurisdiction of
the RTC as an intestate court might have constricted the determination of the rights to the properties
arising from that deed, but it does not prevent the RTC as intestate court from ordering the inclusion in
the inventory of the properties subject of that deed. This is because the RTC as intestate court, albeit
vested only with special and limited jurisdiction, was still “deemed to have all the necessary powers to
exercise such jurisdiction to make it effective.”
Lastly, the inventory of the estate of Emigdio must be prepared and submitted for the important purpose
of resolving the difficult issues of collation and advancement to the heirs. Article 1061 of the Civil
Coderequired every compulsory heir and the surviving spouse, herein Teresita herself, to “bring into the
mass of the estate any property or right which he (or she) may have received from the decedent, during
the lifetime of the latter, by way of donation, or any other gratuitous title, in order that it may be computed
in the determination of the legitime of each heir, and in the account of the partition.” Section 2, Rule 90 of
the Rules of Court also provided that any advancement by the decedent on the legitime of an heir “may
be heard and determined by the court having jurisdiction of the estate proceedings, and the final order of
the court thereon shall be binding on the person raising the questions and on the heir.” Rule 90 thereby
expanded the special and limited jurisdiction of the RTC as an intestate court about the matters relating to
the inventory of the estate of the decedent by authorizing it to direct the inclusion of properties donated or
bestowed by gratuitous title to any compulsory heir by the decedent.38

The determination of which properties should be excluded from or included in the inventory of estate
properties was well within the authority and discretion of the RTC as an intestate court. In making its
determination, the RTC acted with circumspection, and proceeded under the guiding policy that it was
best to include all properties in the possession of the administrator or were known to the administrator to
belong to Emigdio rather than to exclude properties that could turn out in the end to be actually part of the
estate. As long as the RTC commits no patent grave abuse of discretion, its orders must be respected as
part of the regular performance of its judicial duty. Grave abuse of discretion means either that the judicial
or quasi–judicial power was exercised in an arbitrary or despotic manner by reason of passion or
personal hostility, or that the respondent judge, tribunal or board evaded a positive duty, or virtually
refused to perform the duty enjoined or to act in contemplation of law, such as when such judge, tribunal
or board exercising judicial or quasi–judicial powers acted in a capricious or whimsical manner as to be
equivalent to lack of jurisdiction.39
Under Section 6(a), Rule 78 of the Rules of Court, the letters of administration may be granted at the
discretion of the court to the surviving spouse, who is competent and willing to serve when the person
dies intestate. Upon issuing the letters of administration to the surviving spouse, the RTC becomes duty–
bound to direct the preparation and submission of the inventory of the properties of the estate, and the
surviving spouse, as the administrator, has the duty and responsibility to submit the inventory within three
months from the issuance of letters of administration pursuant to Rule 83 of the Rules of Court, viz:

Section 1. Inventory and appraisal to be returned within three months. – Within three (3) months after his
appointment every executor or administrator shall return to the court atrue inventory and appraisal of all
the real and personal estate of the deceased which has come into his possession or knowledge. In
the appraisement of such estate, the court may order one or more of the inheritance tax appraisers to give
his or their assistance.

The usage of the word all in Section 1, supra, demands the inclusion of all the real and personal
properties of the decedent in the inventory.22 However, the word all is qualified by the phrase which has
come into his possession or knowledge, which signifies that the properties must be known to the
administrator to belong to the decedent or are in her possession as the administrator. Section 1 allows no
exception, for the phrase true inventory implies that no properties appearing to belong to the decedent
can be excluded from the inventory, regardless of their being in the possession of another person or
entity.

The objective of the Rules of Court in requiring the inventory and appraisal of the estate of the decedent
is “to aid the court in revising the accounts and determining the liabilities of the executor or the
administrator, and in making a final and equitable distribution (partition) of the estate and otherwise to
facilitate the administration of the estate.”23 Hence, the RTC that presides over the administration of an
estate is vested with wide discretion on the question of what properties should be included in the
inventory. According to Peralta v. Peralta,24 the CA cannot impose its judgment in order to supplant that
of the RTC on the issue of which properties are to be included or excluded from the inventory in the
absence of “positive abuse of discretion,” for in the administration of the estates of deceased persons,
“the judges enjoy ample discretionary powers and the appellate courts should not interfere with or attempt
to replace the action taken by them, unless it be shown that there has been a positive abuse of
discretion.”25 As long as the RTC commits no patently grave abuse of discretion, its orders must be
respected as part of the regular performance of its judicial duty.

There is no dispute that the jurisdiction of the trial court as an intestate court is special and limited. The
trial court cannot adjudicate title to properties claimed to be a part of the estate but are claimed to belong
to third parties by title adverse to that of the decedent and the estate, not by virtue of any right of
inheritance from the decedent. All that the trial court can do regarding said properties is to determine
whether or not they should be included in the inventory of properties to be administered by the
administrator. Such determination is provisional and may be still revised. As the Court said in Agtarap v.
Agtarap:26

The general rule is that the jurisdiction of the trial court, either as a probate court or an intestate court,
relates only to matters having to do with the probate of the will and/or settlement of the estate of deceased
persons, but does not extend to the determination of questions of ownership that arise during the
proceedings. The patent rationale for this rule is that such court merely exercises special and limited
jurisdiction. As held in several cases, a probate court or one in charge of estate proceedings, whether
testate or intestate, cannot adjudicate or determine title to properties claimed to be a part of the estate and
which are claimed to belong to outside parties, not by virtue of any right of inheritance from the deceased
but by title adverse to that of the deceased and his estate. All that the said court could do as regards said
properties is to determine whether or not they should be included in the inventory of properties to be
administered by the administrator. If there is no dispute, there poses no problem, but if there is, then the
parties, the administrator, and the opposing parties have to resort to an ordinary action before a court
exercising general jurisdiction for a final determination of the conflicting claims of title.

However, this general rule is subject to exceptions as justified by expediency and convenience.

First, the probate court may provisionally pass upon in an intestate or a testate proceeding the
question of inclusion in, or exclusion from, the inventory of a piece of property without prejudice
to final determination of ownership in a separate action. Second, if the interested parties are all heirs
to the estate, or the question is one of collation or advancement, or the parties consent to the assumption
of jurisdiction by the probate court and the rights of third parties are not impaired, then the probate
court is competent to resolve issues on ownership. Verily, its jurisdiction extends to matters incidental
or collateral to the settlement and distribution of the estate, such as the determination of the status of each
heir and whether the property in the inventory is conjugal or exclusive property of the deceased
spouse. (Italics in the original; bold emphasis supplied)
“Likewise unmeritorious is petitioners’ contention that the Court of Appeals erred in declaring Amelia’s
marriage to Eliseo as void ab initio. In a void marriage, it was though no marriage has taken place, thus,
it cannot be the source of rights. Any interested party may attack the marriage directly or collaterally. A
void marriage can be questioned even beyond the lifetime of the parties to the marriage. It must be
pointed out that at the time of the celebration of the marriage of Eliseo and Amelia, the law in effect was
the Civil Code, and not the Family Code, making the ruling in Niñal v. Bayadog applicable four-square to
the case at hand. In Niñal, the Court, in no uncertain terms, allowed therein petitioners to file a petition
for the declaration of nullity of their father’s marriage to therein respondent after the death of their father,
by contradistinguishing void from voidable marriages, to wit:
[C]onsequently, void marriages can be questioned even after the death of either party but voidable
marriages can be assailed only during the lifetime of the parties and not after death of either, in which
case the parties and their offspring will be left as if the marriage had been perfectly valid. That is why the
action or defense for nullity is imprescriptible, unlike voidable marriages where the action prescribes. Only
the parties to a voidable marriage can assail it but any proper interested party may attack a void
marriage.
It was emphasized in Niñal that in a void marriage, no marriage has taken place and it cannot be the
source of rights, such that any interested party may attack the marriage directly or collaterally without
prescription, which may be filed even beyond the lifetime of the parties to the marriage.
Relevant to the foregoing, there is no doubt that Elise, whose successional rights would be prejudiced by
her father’s marriage to Amelia, may impugn the existence of such marriage even after the death of her
father. The said marriage may be questioned directly by filing an action attacking the validity thereof, or
collaterally by raising it as an issue in a proceeding for the settlement of the estate of the deceased
spouse, such as in the case at bar. Ineluctably, Elise, as a compulsory heir, has a cause of action for the
declaration of the absolute nullity of the void marriage of Eliseo and Amelia, and the death of either party
to the said marriage does not extinguish such cause of action.”

There is however, the presently controlling view that the right of an interested party (who is not a spouse)
to file a direct action to nullify a void marriage is limited to marriages that are not covered by A.M. No. 02-
11-10-SC; and that this rule applies regardless of whether a spouse to the marriage has died. Pursuant to
this view, if a spouse to the marriage has died, it is still the surviving spouse that has the right to institute
the direct action; an interested party (who is not a spouse) may still maintain a collateral action to assail
the validity of the marriage.
See also the case of Garcia-Quiazon vs Belen (GR 189121, 31 July 2013), where Supreme Court
in obiter (obiter since the action did not involve a direct proceeding; it involved a settlement of estate
proceeding, hence a collateral proceeding), seemingly supported the ruling in Enrico (that only marriages
not covered by A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC may be commenced by interested parties other than the spouses
right even after the death of one of the spouses), when it said that:
‘at the time of the celebration of the marriage of Eliseo and Amelia, the law in effect was the Civil Code,
and not the Family Code, making the ruling in Niñal v. Bayadog[23][384 Phil. 661, 673 (2000).] applicable four-
square to the case at hand. In Niñal, the Court, in no uncertain terms, allowed therein petitioners to file a
petition for the declaration of nullity of their father’s marriage to therein respondent after the death of their
father’.

ESCHEAT
CASTORIO ALVARICO vs. AMELITA L. SOLA

2002-06-06 | G.R. No. 138953 DE CI S I O NPetitioner Castorio Alvarico is the natural father
of respondent Amelita Sola while FerminaLopez is petitioner's aunt, and also Amelita's adoptive
mother.On June 17, 1982, the Bureau of Lands approved and granted the Miscellaneous
Sales Application (MSA) of Fermina (aunt/adoptive mother) over Lot 5.On May 28, 1983,
Fermina executed a Deed of Self-Adjudication and Transfer of Rightsover Lot 5 in favor of
Amelita, who agreed to assume all the obligations, duties, andconditions imposed upon Fermina
under MSA Application:
xxx the Transferee Mrs. Amelita L. Sola, agrees to assume, all theobligations, duties and conditions imposed upon the
Awardee in relation tothe MSA Application xxx.[I] hereby declare that I accept this Deed of Self-Adjudication and Transferof
Rights and further agree to all conditions provided therein.
Amelita assumed payment of the lot to the Bureau of Lands. She paid a total amount ofP282,900.On
April 7, 1989, the Bureau of Lands issued an order approving the transfer of rights andgranting the
amendment of the application from Fermina to Amelita. On May 2, 1989,
Original Certificate of Title (OCT) No. 3439 was issued in favor of Amelita
.On June 24, 1993, herein petitioner (natural father) filed Civil Case for reconveyanceagainst Amelita. He
claimed that on January 4, 1984, Fermina donated the land to him
and immediately thereafter, he
took possession of the same
. He
averred that thedonation to him had the effect of withdrawing the earlier transfer to Amelita
.For her part,
Amelita maintained that the donation to petitioner is void becauseFermina was no longer the
owner of the property

when it was allegedly donated topetitioner, the property having been transferred earlier to her.
She added

that thedonation was void because of


lack of approval from the Bureau of Lands
, and that shehad validly acquired the land as Fermina's rightful heir. She also denied that she is atrustee
of the land for petitioner. After trial, the
RTC rendered a decision in favor of petitioner.
On appeal, the Court of Appeals REVERSED the RTC. Case Dismissed. MR denied.Hence, the instant
petition for certiorari seasonably filed on the following grounds:I.
xxxII. THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED SERIOUS ERROR IN APPLYING ON THECASE AT
BAR THE PRINCIPLE IN LAW THAT IT IS
REGISTRATION
OF THE SALES PATENT THATCONSTITUTE THE
OPERATIVE ACT THAT WOULD CONVEY OWNERSHIP
OF THE LAND TO THE APPLICANT BECAUSE THE LEGAL CONTROVERSY BETWEEN PETITIONER
AND RESPONDENTDOES NOT INVOLVE CONFLICTING CLAIMS ON SALES PATENT APPLICATIONS;III. THE
HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS
GRAVELY ABUSED ITS DISCRETION AND COMMITTEDSERIOUS ERROR IN MAKING A FINDING THAT
RESPONDENT ACQUIRED THE LAND IN QUESTION,IN GOOD FAITH
, ALTHOUGH THERE IS NO BASIS NOR NEED TO MAKE SUCH A FINDING; and
The crucial issue to be resolved in an action for reconveyance is: Who betweenpetitioner and
respondent has a better claim to the land?
Given the circumstances in this case and the contentions of the parties,
we find that noreversible error was committed by the appellate court in holding that
hereinpetitioner's complaint against respondent should be dismissed
. The evidence onrecord and the applicable law indubitably favor respondent.Petitioner principally relies
on Articles 744 and 1544 of the New Civil Code, which provide: Art. 744. Donations of the same thing to
two or more different donees shall be governed bythe provisions concerning the sale of the same thing to
two or more different persons. Art. 1544.xxx ownership shall belong to the person acquiring it who in good
faith firstrecorded it in the Registry of Property.Should there be no inscription, the ownership shall pertain
to the person who in good faithwas first in the possession; and, in the absence thereof, to the person who
presents theoldest title, provided there is good faith. (Emphasis supplied.)Petitioner claims that
respondent was in bad faith when she registered the land in hername and, based on the abovementioned
rules, he has a better right over the propertybecause he was first in material possession in good faith.
However,
this allegation of badfaith on the part of Amelita Sola in acquiring the title is devoid of
evidentiarysupport.
For one, the execution of public documents, as in the case of Affidavits of Adjudication, is entitled to the
presumption of regularity, hence convincing evidence isrequired to assail and controvert them. Second, it
is
undisputed that OCT No. 3439 wasissued in 1989 in the name of Amelita
.
It requires more than petitioner's bareallegation to defeat the Original Certificate of Title which on
its face enjoys the legalpresumption of regularity of issuance
. A Torrens title, once registered, serves as noticeto the whole world. All persons must take notice and no
one can plead ignorance of itsregistration.
Even assuming that respondent Amelita Sola acquired title to the disputed propertyin bad faith,
only the State can institute reversion proceedings under Sec. 101 of thePublic Land Act.
Thus:
Sec. 101.-
All actions for reversion to the Government of lands of the public domain orimprovements thereon shall be
instituted by the Solicitor General or the officer actingin his stead, in the proper courts, in the name of the Republic of the
Philippines
.
In other words,
a private individual may not bring an action for reversion or anyaction which would have the
effect of canceling a free patent and the correspondingcertificate of title issued on the basis
thereof, such that the land covered therebywill again form part of the public domain
. Only the Solicitor General or the officer actingin his stead may do so.
Since Amelita Sola's title originated from a grant by thegovernment, its cancellation is a
matter between the grantor and the grantee
. Clearlythen,
petitioner has no standing at all to question the validity of Amelita's title
. Itfollows that
he cannot "recover" the property because, to begin with, he has notshown that he is the rightful
owner thereof
.
Even assuming that Sola acquired title tot eh disputed property in bad faith, only the State
can institute REVERSION PROCEEDINGS under Sec. 101 of the Public Land Act. Thus:

Sec. 101. All actions for reversion to the Government of lands of the public domain or
improvements thereon shall be instituted by the Solicitor General or the officer acting in his
stead, in the proper courts, in the name of the Republic of the Philippines.

In other words, a private individual may not bring an action for reversion or any action
which would have the effect of canceling a free patent and the corresponding certificate of
title issued on the basis thereof, suh that the land covered thereby will again form part of
the public domain.

Only the Solicitor General of the officer acting in his stead may do so. Since Sola's title
originated from a grant by the government, its cancellation is a matter between the grantor
and the grantee. Clearly then, Alvarico has no standing at all to question the validity of
Sola's title. It follows that he cannot recover the property because to begin with, he has not
shown that he is the rightful owner thereof.
Anent Alvarico's contention that it was the intention of Fermina Sola for Amelita Sola to hold
the property in trust for him, we held that if this was really the intention of Fermina, then
this should have been clearly stated in the Deed of Self-Adjudication executed in 1983, in
the Deed of Donation executed in 1984, or in a subsequent instrument. Absent any
persuasive proof of that intention in any written instrument, we are not prepared to accept
Alvarico's bare allegation concerning the donor's state of mind.

CANIZA vs. CA GR 110427 2/24/97


As already stated, Carmen Caiza passed away during the pendency of this appeal. The Estradas
thereupon moved to dismiss the petition, arguing that Caiza's death automatically terminated the
guardianship, Amaparo Evangelista lost all authority as her judicial guardian, and ceased to have legal
personality to represent her in the present appeal. The motion is without merit.
While it is indeed well-established rule that the relationship of guardian and ward is necessarily
terminated by the death of either the guardian or the ward,[38] the rule affords no advantage to the Estradas.
Amparo Evangelista, as niece of Carmen Caiza, is one of the latter's only two (2) surviving heirs, the other
being Caiza's nephew, Ramon C. Nevado. On their motion and by Resolution of this Court [39] of June 20,
1994, they were in fact substituted as parties in the appeal at bar in place of the deceased, in accordance
with Section 17, Rule 3 of the Rules of Court, viz
To be sure, an ejectment case survives the death of a party. Caiza's demise did not extinguish
the desahucio suit instituted by her through her guardian.[41] That action, not being a purely personal one,
survived her death; her heirs have taken her place and now represent her interests in the appeal at bar.

NERI vs. HEIRS OF HADJI YUSOP UY 683 SCRA


Facts: This case is a petition for review on certiorari by petitioners: Napoleon, Alicia,
Visminda, Rosa, Douglas, Eutropia, and Victoria seeking to reverse and set aside the
Decision of the CA which annulled the Decision of the RTC of Davao del Norte, and entered a
new one dismissing P’s complaint for annulment of sale and damages against herein
respondent.
During the lifetime of Ps’ mother, Anunciacion, she and her 2nd husband, Enrique, acquired
several homestead properties. When Anunciacion died, however, Enrique in his personal
capacity and as natural guardian of his minor children Rosa and Douglas, together with,
Napoleon, Alicia and Visminda executed an Extra-Judicial Settlement of the Estate with
Absolute Deed of Sale (1979) adjudicating among themselves the said homestead
properties, and thereafter, sold the properties to the late spouses Uy for a consideration of
80,000.
On 1996, the children of Enrique filed a complaint for annulment of the said sale against
spouses Uy, assailing the validity of the sale for having been sold within the prohibited
period. And, also, for having been executed without the consent or approval of Eutropia,
Victoria, Rosa and Douglas; thus, depriving the latter siblings of their legitime.

Uy countered that the sale took place beyond the 5 year prohibitory period from the
issuance of the homestead patents. They also denied that Eutropia and Victoria were
excluded from the Extra-judicial settlement and sale of the subject properties, and
interposed further the defense of prescription and laches.

RTC rendered a Decision annulling the Extra-judicial settlement of estate with Absolute
Deed of Sale. It ruled that the sale is void because Eutropia and Victoria were deprived of
their hereditary rights and that Enrique had no judicial authority to sell the shares of his
minor children, Rosa and Douglas.

On appeal, however, CA reserved and set aside RTC decision. Hence this appeal.

Issue: Whether Enrique, as guardian of his children and co-owner (with his children), sell
their co-owned property?
Decision: No, as to the shares of the minor children because as a natural guardian, he is
merely clothed with powers of administration.
Doctrine: Parents should apply for judicial guardianship in order for them to sell properties
of their children.

*Even the parents of their minor children are bound to post bond.*

With respect to Rosa and Douglas who were minors at the time of the execution of the
settlement and sale, their NATURAL GUARDIAN and father, Enrique, represented them in
the transaction. However, on the basis of the laws prevailing at that time, Enrique was
merely clothed with POWERS OF ADMINISTRATION and bereft of any authority to dispose of
their 2/16 shares in the estate of their mother, Anunciacion.

Power of dominion, is granted by law only to a JUDICIAL GUARDIAN of the ward’s property
and even then only with court’s prior approval secured in accordance with the proceedings
set forth by the Rules.

Exception: RATIFICATION
Consequently, the disputed sale entered into by Enrique in behalf of his minor children
without the proper judicial authority, unless ratified by them upon reaching the age of
majority, is unenforceable in accordance with Art. 1317 and 1403(1) of the Civil Code.

Records, however, show that Rosa had ratified the extrajudicial settlement of the estate
with absolute deed of sale. The same, however, is not true with respect to Douglas for lack
of evidence showing ratification.
THEREFORE, the extrajudicial settlement with sale is invalid and not binding on Eutropia,
Victoria and Douglas. Consequently, spouses Uy or their substituted heirs became pro
indiviso co-owners of the homestead properties with Eutropia, Victoria and Douglas, who
retained title to their respective shares.

OROPESA vs. OROPESA 671 SCRA

Facts: This is a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Decision rendered by
the CA affirming the Order of the RTC in a Special Proceedings which dismissed Nilo
Oropesa’s, peitioner, petition for guardianship over the properties of his father, respondent,
Cirilo Oropesa.
Petitioner filed with the RTC of Parañaque City, a petition for him and a certain Ms. Louie
Ginez to be appointed as guardians over the property of his father, respondent, Cirilo
Oropesa.

In said petition, petitioner alleged that respondent has been afflicted with several maladies
and has been sickly for over 10 years already having suffered a stroke, that his judgment
and memory were impaired and such has been evident after his hospitalization. That due to
his age and medical condition, he cannot, without outside aid, manage his property wisely,
and has become easy prey for deceit and exploitation by people around him, particularly his
girlfriend, Ms. Luisa Agamata.

Respondent filed his Opposition to the petition for guardianship filed by his (ever caring and
loving) son.

During trial, petitioner presented his evidence which consists of his, his sister, and
respondent’s former nurse’s testimony.

After presenting evidence, petitioner rested his case but failed to file his written formal offer
of evidence.

Respondent, thereafter, filed his Omnibus Motion to declare that petitioner has waived the
presentation of his Offer of Exhibits and Evidence since they were not formally offered; To
expunge the documents of the petitioner from records; and to grant leave to the Oppositor
to file Demurrer to Evid. A subsequent Demurrer was filed and was granted.

MR was filed by petitioner and appealed the case to CA; failed, now to the SC.
Issue: Whether respondent is considered incompetent as per the Rules who should be
placed under guardianship?
Decision: No.The only medical document on record is the Report of Neuropsychological
Screening. Said report, was ambivalent at best, although had negative findings regarding
memory lapses on the part of respondent, it also contained finding that supported the view
that respondent on the average was indeed competent.

ABAD vs. BIAZON 687 SCRA 12/5/12

On June 20, 2012, this Court issued a Resolution,20 requiring Abad to comment on the manifestation filed by
Maura. Pursuant to the Resolution, Abad filed his Comment21 on August 9, 2012 and expressed his acquiescence
to Maura’s motion to dismiss the petition. He asseverated that the issues raised in the petition pertain to the
irregularity in the appointment of Biason as guardian which he believed had been rendered moot and academic by
the latter’s death. He also supported Maura’s prayer for the termination of the guardianship by asseverating that
her act of filing of a 16 Id. at 22-23. 17 Id. at 29. 18 Id. at 254-255. 19 Id. at 256.
20 Id. at 260. 21 Id. at 261-262. Resolution G.R. No. 191993 7 petition-in-intervention is indicative of the fact
that she is of sound mind and that she can competently manage her business affairs. We find Maura’s motion
meritorious. An issue or a case becomes moot and academic when it ceases to present a justiciable controversy, so
that a determination of the issue would be without practical use and value. In such cases, there is no actual
substantial relief to which the petitioner would be entitled and which would be negated by the dismissal of the
petition.22 In his petition, Abad prayed for the nullification of the CA Decision dated August 28, 2009 and
Resolution dated April 19, 2010, which dismissed his appeal from the Decision dated September 26, 2007 of the
RTC and denied his motion for reconsideration, respectively. Basically, he was challenging Biason’s qualifications
and the procedure by which the RTC appointed him as guardian for Maura. However, with Biason’s demise, it has
become impractical and futile to proceed with resolving the merits of the petition. It is a well-established rule that
the relationship of guardian and ward is necessarily terminated by the death of either the guardian or the ward.23
The supervening event of death rendered it pointless to delve into the propriety of Biason’s appointment since the
juridical tie between him and Maura has already been dissolved. The petition, regardless of its disposition, will not
afford Abad, or anyone else for that matter, any substantial relief. Moreover, Abad, in his Comment, shared
Maura’s belief that the petition has lost its purpose and even consented to Maura’s prayer for the dismissal of the
petition.

PILAR Y. GOYENA v. AMPARO LEDESMA-GUSTILO. G.R. No. 147148. January 13, 2003
FACTS:

The lower courts granted Amparo Ledesma Gustilo as guardian over the person and property of her sister
Julieta Ledesma. Goyena appealed citing that she was a friend for than 60 years.

In respondent's application for guardianship, she mentioned that her sister suffered a stroke and needed
outside assistance. Her sister also owns a real estate and in controlling such she needs an assistance of
a guardian and the nearest kin was respondent.

Petitioner filed an opposition citing that Julieta can take care of herself and that the siblings had
antagonistic interests. Petitioner even gave other names the court may appoint if she was not herself
appointed.
The trial court ruled that indeed Julieta needed assistance; that Goyena even though she has a special
bond with Julieta, at 90, is not physically fit to do such chores; that Goyena's reason that Julieta dislikes
her sister is not sufficient to make prevent her from being a guardian. The trial court appointed Gustilo.

Goyena filed a motion for reconsideration which was also denied. The trial court adds that the court
found Amparo to be the most qualified after they considered Goyena and the other names, given that
the next of kin would not oppose.

Goyena the appealed with the CA which they also denied. The CA cites that there are no antagonistic
interests between the siblings because they are co-owners. There is also no showing that petitioner’s
business decisions in the past had resulted in the prejudice of Julieta. There is no enough proof of
Amparo's hostile interests against Julieta as she was the one who petitioned for the guardianship. The
CA even pointed that Goyena initially concealed the deteriorating state of mind of Julieta from the court.
Lastly, that even if Goyena declared her disinterest as guardian, the names she mentioned have not
acted, nor even indicated, their desire to act as such.

ISSUE: Whether petition has merit.

RULING:

No. First of all, Rule 65 should have been applied as the case was a question of fact, not of law.

Second, the SC examined the letters that as per Goyena showed proof of antagonistic interest between
the sisters. The SC found the four letters presented to be insufficient to prove antagonistic interests. A
mere disagreement is not proof of such.

Third, Goyena’s claim that Amparo's intent to be a guardian is for the control and use for her own benefits
of Julieta's properties is purely speculative and finds no support from the records.

Finally, the SC noted two undisputed facts, that; Goyena opposed the petition for the appointment of
respondent as guardian before the trial court because, among other reasons, she felt she was disliked by
respondent, a ground which does not render respondent unsuitable for appointment as guardian, and
concealment of the deteriorating state of mind of Julieta before the trial court, is reflective of a lack of
good faith.

Facts: This is an appeal, a petition for review on certiorari, from the CA’s Decision which
affirmed the RTC’s Decision in a Special Proceeding appointing herein respondent Amparo
Ledesma-Gustilo, respondent, as guardian over the person and property of her sister Julieta
Ledesma, Pilar Y. Goyena, petitioner, Julieta’s close friend and companion of more than 60
years.
Respondent filed with the RTC of Makati a Petition for Letters of Guardianship over the
person and property of her sister Julieta alleging that Julieta’s health is under medical
attention and has been in and out of the hospital; Julieta is not in a position to care for
herself and needs the assistance of a guardian to manage her interests in on-going
corporate and agricultural enterprises.

Petitioner filed an opposition to the petition for letters of guardianship. Petitioner avers that
such petition lacked factual and legal basis because Julieta is competent and sane, thus,
guardianship over is absolutely not needed. Also, petitioner is not fit to be appointed as
guardian of Julieta since their interests are antagonistic.

Issue: Whether petitioner should be the guardian of Julieta?


Decision: No. The qualification of respondent to act as guardian over the person and
properties of Julieta has been duly established. As a sister, she can best take care of
Julieta’s concern and well being. Now that Julieta is in the twilight of her life, her family
should be given the opportunity to show their love and affection for her without however
denying petitioner access to her considering the special bond of friendship between the two.
Needless to say, the oppositor at 90 years of age could not be said to be physically fit to
attend to all the needs of Julieta.

ADVENT CAPITAL AND FINANCE CORPORATION, vs NICASIO I. ALCANTARA and EDITHA I.


ALCANTARA G.R. No. 183050, January 25, 2012
This case is about the validity of a rehabilitation court’s order that compelled a third party, in possession
of money allegedly belonging to the debtor of a company under rehabilitation, to deliver such money to
its court-appointed receiver over the debtor’s objection.

The Issue Presented

The sole issue in this case is whether or not the cash dividends held by Belson and claimed by both the
Alcantaras and Advent Capital constitute corporate assets of the latter that the rehabilitation court may,
upon motion, require to be conveyed to the rehabilitation receiver for his disposition.

Decision:

Advent Capital must file a separate action for collection to recover the trust fees that it allegedly earned
and, with the trial court’s authorization if warranted, put the money in escrow for payment to whoever it
rightly belongs. Having failed to collect the trust fees at the end of each calendar quarter as stated in the
contract, all it had against the Alcantaras was a claim for payment which is a proper subject for an
ordinary action for collection. It cannot enforce its money claim by simply filing a motion in the
rehabilitation case for delivery of money belonging to the Alcantaras but in the possession of a third party.
Rehabilitation proceedings are summary and non-adversarial in nature, and do not contemplate
adjudication of claims that must be threshed out in ordinary court proceedings. Adversarial proceedings
similar to that in ordinary courts are inconsistent with the commercial nature of a rehabilitation case. The
latter must be resolved quickly and expeditiously for the sake of the corporate debtor, its creditors and
other interested parties. Thus, the Interim Rules “incorporate the concept of prohibited pleadings, affidavit
evidence in lieu of oral testimony, clarificatory hearings instead of the traditional approach of receiving
evidence, and the grant of authority to the court to decide the case, or any incident, on the basis of
affidavits and documentary evidence.

The real owner of the trust property is the trustor-beneficiary. In this case, the trustors-beneficiaries are the
Alcantaras. Thus, Advent Capital could not dispose of the Alcantaras portfolio on its own. The income and principal
of the portfolio could only be withdrawn upon the Alcantaras written instruction or order to Advent Capital. [16] The
latter could not also assign or encumber the portfolio or its income without the written consent of the Alcantaras. [17] All
these are stipulated in the Trust Agreement.
Ultimately, the issue is what court has jurisdiction to hear and adjudicate the conflicting claims of the parties
over the dividends that Belson held in trust for their owners. Certainly, not the rehabilitation court which has not been
given the power to resolve ownership disputes between Advent Capital and third parties. Neither Belson nor the
Alcantaras are its debtors or creditors with interest in the rehabilitation.

Advent Capital must file a separate action for collection to recover the trust fees that it allegedly earned and,
with the trial courts authorization if warranted, put the money in escrow for payment to whoever it rightly
belongs. Having failed to collect the trust fees at the end of each calendar quarter as stated in the contract, all it had
against the Alcantaras was a claim for payment which is a proper subject for an ordinary action for collection. It cannot
enforce its money claim by simply filing a motion in the rehabilitation case for delivery of money belonging to the
Alcantaras but in the possession of a third party.

Rehabilitation proceedings are summary and non-adversarial in nature, and do not contemplate adjudication
of claims that must be threshed out in ordinary court proceedings. Adversarial proceedings similar to that in ordinary
courts are inconsistent with the commercial nature of a rehabilitation case. The latter must be resolved quickly and
expeditiously for the sake of the corporate debtor, its creditors and other interested parties. Thus, the Interim Rules
incorporate the concept of prohibited pleadings, affidavit evidence in lieu of oral testimony, clarificatory hearings
instead of the traditional approach of receiving evidence, and the grant of authority to the court to decide the case, or
any incident, on the basis of affidavits and documentary evidence. [18]

Here, Advent Capitals claim is disputed and requires a full trial on the merits. It must be resolved in a separate
action where the Alcantaras claim and defenses may also be presented and heard. Advent Capital cannot say that the
filing of a separate action would defeat the purpose of corporate rehabilitation. In the first place, the Interim Rules do
not exempt a company under rehabilitation from availing of proper legal procedure for collecting debt that may be
due it. Secondly, Court records show that Advent Capital had in fact sought to recover one of its assets by filing a
separate action for replevin involving a car that was registered in its name.[

LAND BANK vs. PEREZ 672 SCRA

There are two obligations in a trust receipt transaction. The first is covered by the provision that refers to
money under the obligation to deliver it (entregarla) to the owner of the merchandise sold. The second is covered by
the provision referring to merchandise received under the obligation to return it (devolvera) to the owner. Thus, under
the Trust Receipts Law,[22] intent to defraud is presumed when (1) the entrustee fails to turn over the proceeds of the
sale of goods covered by the trust receipt to the entruster; or (2) when the entrustee fails to return the goods under
trust, if they are not disposed of in accordance with the terms of the trust receipts. [23]

In all trust receipt transactions, both obligations on the part of the trustee exist in the alternative the return of
the proceeds of the sale or the return or recovery of the goods, whether raw or processed. [24] When both parties enter
into an agreement knowing that the return of the goods subject of the trust receipt is not possible even without any
fault on the part of the trustee, it is not a trust receipt transaction penalized under Section 13 of P.D. 115; the only
obligation actually agreed upon by the parties would be the return of the proceeds of the sale transaction. This
transaction becomes a mere loan,[25] where the borrower is obligated to pay the bank the amount spent for the purchase
of the goods.
Based on these premises, we cannot consider the agreements between the parties in this case to be trust receipt
transactions because (1) from the start, the parties were aware that ACDC could not possibly be obligated to reconvey
to LBP the materials or the end product for which they were used; and (2) from the moment the materials were used
for the government projects, they became public, not LBPs, property.

Since these transactions are not trust receipts, an action for estafa should not be brought against the
respondents, who are liable only for a loan.
Even if we assume that the transactions were trust receipts, the complaint against the respondents still should
have been dismissed. The Trust Receipts Law punishes the dishonesty and abuse of confidence in the handling of
money or goods to the prejudice of another, regardless of whether the latter is the owner or not. The law does not
singularly seek to enforce payment of the loan, as there can be no violation of [the] right against imprisonment for
non-payment of a debt

CANG vs. CA GR. 105308 9/25/98

Herbert Cang and Anna Marie Clavano, as a married couple, begot 3 children. Much later, Anna
Marie learned of her husband’s infidelity and filed a Petition for Legal Separation which was
granted. Herbert then left for the U.S. and sought Divorce, which was also granted, awarding sole
custody of their 3 children to Anna Marie. Herbert eventually became a naturalised American
citizen after taking an American wife. On the other hand, Ronald Clavano and Maria Clara Clavano,
brother and sister-in-law to Anna
Marie, filed the Petition for Adoption of the 3 minor children of the couple with the sole consent
of Anna Marie, as she has priority over professional pursuits. Herbert’s consent was never
considered nor acquired. Upon learning of this, Herbert immediately returned to the Philippines
to contest the Petition as he could not “in conscience, allow anybody to strip him of his paternal
authority over his beloved children”. The Petition for Adoption was granted adverse to Herbert as
it was grounded on his alleged abandonment of his own children. Undeterred, Herbert argued that his
written consent was never acquired and that he never
abandoned his children notwithstanding his physical absence as he was sending dollar remittances.

ISSUE: WHETHER OR NOT HERBERT HAS ABANDONED HIS CHILDREN AS TO WARRANT


DISPENSATION OF HIS CONSENT TO THEIR ADOPTION.

“Underlying the policies and precepts of International Conventions and the domestic statutes with respect
to children is the overriding principle that all actuations should be in the best interests of the child. This is
not, however, to be implemented on derogation of the primary right of the parent/s to exercise parental
authority over them.” “The discretion to approve Adoption proceedings is not to be anchored solely on
the best interests of the child but likewise, with due regard to the natural rights of the parents over the
child.”

IN THE MATTER OF THE ADOPTION OF STEPHANIE ASTORGA GARCIA 454 SCRA


(GR 148311 - March 31,2005)
Honorato Catindig, being then a widower and qualified to become an Adoptive Parent, filed a Petition to
adopt his minor illegitimate child Stephanie Nathy Astorga Garcia.er of the Adoption of
arcia
(GR 148311 - March 31,2005)
“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 Child are of
primary and paramount consideration, hence, every reasonable intendment should be sustained
to promote and fulfil these noble and compassionate objectives of the law.”

In RE: PETITION FOR ADOPTION OF MICHELLE L. LIM GR 168992-92 5/21/09

Minors Michelle and Michael while only 11 days old were brought to the clinic of Spouses Primo
and Monina Lim. Themselves childless, the couple resorted to Simulation of Birth readily reared and
cared for the children as their own. After Primo died, Monina remarried. Monina decided to
officially file a Petition for Adoption which was dismissed.
ISSUE: Whether Monina, having remarries, can singly adopt.

“At the time the Petitions for Adoption were filed, Monina had already remarried. She filed the
Petitions by herself, without being joined by her second husband Olario. The law is clear and
explicit. There is no room for ambiguity.”

CASTO vs. GREGORIO GR 188801 - October 15, 2014

Atty.Jose Castro was the estranged husband of Rosario and with whom she had a daughter. Atty.Jose
later adopted his two illegitimate children with Lilibeth Gregorio, without acquiring a valid consent
from Rosario and nor was Rosario duly notified of the proceedings despite the constructive notice
embodied in the publication. Anchored upon these grounds and after Atty.Jose’s demise, Rosario and
daughter, Joanne, filed a Petition for Annulment of Judgment as to the Court’s approval of the Adoption.
ISSUE: Should the Court have notified the Rosario and daughter, Joanne, of the Adoption?

“YES. It is settled that the “Jurisdiction of the Court is determined by the statute in force at the time of the
commencement of the action. As Atty.Jose filed the Petition for Adoption on August 1,2009, it is R.A.
8552 which applies over the proceedings. The law on Adoption requires that the adoption by the father of
a child born out of wedlock obtain, not only the consent of his wife but also
the consent of his legitimate children.
VDA. DE JACOB vs. CA 312 SCRA 772
Facts: Plaintiff-Appellant Tomasa Vda. De Jacob (P) 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 (Pedro Pilapil)(D) on the other hand, claimed to be the legally-adopted
son of Alfredo. In support of his claim, he presented an Order issued by then Judge Jose
Moya, CFI Cam Sur, granting the petition for adoption filed by the deceased Alfredo in favor
of Defendant.

During the settlement of estate proceeding of the deceased of Alfredo Jacob initiated by
Petitioner, Defendant sought to intervene therein claiming his share of the deceased’s
estate as Alfredo’s adopted son and his sole surviving heir. Defendant questioned the
validity of the marriage between Petitioner and Alfredo. Petitioner on the other hand,
opposed the Motion for Intervention of Defendant. She questioned the claim of Defendant
as Alfredo’s legal heir.

1st Issue: To prove Petitioner’s marriage: She presented a reconstructed marriage contract
as she could not present the original copy was lost when Msgr. Yllana, solemnizing officer,
gave it to Mr. Jose Centenera for registration.

During Trial:

Court a quo observed: No copy of their marriage contract was sent to the local civil
registrar; Irregularity exist in the signature of Alfredo Jacob on the alleged marriage
contract; Msgr. Yllana never mentioned in his affidavit that he gave the marriage contract to
Mr. Jose Centenera.

2nd Issue: To prove his adoption: D presented an Order allegedly issued by Judge Jose
Moya granting the petition for adoption filed by deceased Alfredo which declared that D as
the legally adopted son of Alfredo.

Court a quo observed: P questioned the validity of Judge Moya’s signature. Both parties
presented handwriting experts to test the authenticity and genuineness of said Judge
Moya’s signature.
RTC ruled that the signature of Judge Moya is authentic and genuine and declared the
reconstructed Marriage Contract as spurious and non-existent. CA affirmed the Decision of
the Trial Court.

Issues:
1. Whether the marriage between P and Alfredo was valid?
2. Whether D is the legally adopted son of Alfredo.
Decision:
1. Due execution and the fact of loss was proven by sufficient evidence. Therefore, the
secondary evidence – testimonial and documentary – is admissible.
Due execution was established by the testimonies of Adela Pilapil, who was present during
the marriage ceremony, and of the petitioner herself as a party to the event. The
subsequent loss was shown by the testimony and the affidavit of the solemnizing officer,
Msgr. Yllana, as well as by P’s own declaration in court. These are relevant, competent and
admissible evidence. Even if the Court will sustain TC to disregard the reconstructed
marriage contract, it must be emphasize that this certificate is not the only proof of the
union between P and Alfredo. (Testimonies of P and the solemnizing officer can prove the
fact of marriage)

2. No, he is not. The burden of proof in establishing adoption is upon the person claiming
such relationship. D failed to do so. Moreover, the evidence presented by P shows that
the alleged adoption is a sham.
PRESUMPTION OF REGULARITY DOES NOT APPLY

As a rule, factual findings of the Trial Court are accorded great weight and respect by the
appellate courts, because it had the opportunity to observe the demeanor of witnesses and
to note telltale signs indicating the truth or falsity of a testimony.

Above rule does not apply in the instant case because it was Judge Augusto Cledera, not the
ponente (Judge Moya), who heard the testimonies of the two expert witnesses.

AUTHENTICITY OF JUDGE MOYA’S SIGNATURE

During the deposition of Judge Moya, he said that he do not remember issuing the Order of
adoption. Also, the signature therein, he categorically declared that it was not his signature.
Although he was suffering from glaucoma, Judge Moya could with medication still read the
newspapers; he even read the document shown to him by the defense counsel.
Such declaration was supported by the testimony of handwriting expert Bienvenido Albacea.
Albacea found that the questioned and the standard signature Jose L. Moya were not written
by one and the same person.

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

 The alleged Order was purportedly made in open Court. In his Deposition, however,
Judge Moya declared that he did not dictate decisions in adoption cases. He only do so
on criminal cases in which the accused pleaded guilty.
 Judge Moya insisted that the branch where was assigned was always indicated in his
decisions and orders; yet the questioned Order did not contain this information.
 Pilapil’s conduct gave no indication that he recognized his own alleged adoption, as
shown by the documents that he signed and other acts that he performed thereafter.
 No proof was presented that Alfredo Jacob had treated him as an adopted child.
Likewise, both the Bureau of Records Management in Manila and the Office of The Local
Civil Registrar of Tigaon, Cam sur, issued Certifications that there was no record that
Pedro Pilapil had been adopted by Dr. Jacob.
 Taken together, these circumstances inexorably negate the alleged adoption of D.

U
Republic vs. Hernandez, GR No. 117209, February 9, 1996_digested
Posted by Pius Morados on March 27, 2012

(Special Proceedings – Adoption: Change of Name)


Facts: The RTC granted the petition for adoption of Kevin Earl Bartolome Moran and simultaneously
granted the prayer therein for the change of the first name of said adoptee to Aaron Joseph, to
complement the surname Munson y Andrade which he acquired consequent to his adoption.
Petitioner opposed the inclusion of the relief for change of name in the same petition for adoption
objecting to the joinder of the petition for adoption and the petitions for the change of name in a single
proceeding, arguing that these petition should be conducted and pursued as two separate proceedings.

Petitioner argues that a petition for adoption and a petition for change of name are two special
proceedings which, in substance and purpose, are different from and are not related to each other, being
respectively governed by distinct sets of law and rules. Petitioner further contends that what the law
allows is the change of the surname of the adoptee, as a matter of right, to conform with that of the
adopter and as a natural consequence of the adoption thus granted. If what is sought is the change of the
registered given or proper name, and since this would involve a substantial change of one’s legal name, a
petition for change of name under Rule 103 should accordingly be instituted, with the substantive and
adjective requisites therefor being conformably satisfied.
Private respondents, on the contrary, admittedly filed the petition for adoption with a prayer for change of
name predicated upon Section 5, Rule 2 which allows permissive joinder of causes of action in order to
avoid multiplicity of suits and in line with the policy of discouraging protracted and vexatious litigations. It
is argued that there is no prohibition in the Rules against the joinder of adoption and change of name
being pleaded as two separate but related causes of action in a single petition.

Issue: WON respondent judge erred in granting prayer for the change of the given or proper name if the
adoptee in a petition for adoption.
Held: No.
Par (1), Art. 189 of the Family Code provides one of the legal effect of adoption:

(1) For civil purposes, the adopted shall be deemed to be a legitimate child of the adopters 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 law allows the adoptee, as a matter of right and obligation, to bear the surname of the adopter, upon
issuance of the decree of adoption. It is the change of the adoptee’s surname to follow that of the adopter
which is the natural and necessary consequence of a grant of adoption and must specifically be
contained in the order of the court, in fact, even if not prayed for by petitioner.
However, the given or proper name, also known as the first or Christian name, of the adoptee must
remain as it was originally registered in the civil register. The creation of an adoptive relationship does not
confer upon the adopter a license to change the adoptee’s registered Christian or first name. The
automatic change thereof, premised solely upon the adoption thus granted, is beyond the purview of a
decree of adoption. Neither is it a mere incident in nor an adjunct of an adoption proceeding, such that a
prayer therefor furtively inserted in a petition for adoption, as in this case, cannot properly be granted.
The official name of a person whose birth is registered in the civil register is the name appearing therein.
If a change in one’s name is desired, this can only be done by filing and strictly complying with the
substantive and procedural requirements for a special proceeding for change of name under Rule 103 of
the Rules of Court, wherein the sufficiency of the reasons or grounds therefor can be threshed out and
accordingly determined.

A petition for change of name being a proceeding in rem, strict compliance with all the requirements
therefor is indispensable in order to vest the court with jurisdiction for its adjudication. It is an independent
and discrete special proceeding, in and by itself, governed by its own set of rules. A fortiori, it cannot be
granted by means of any other proceeding. To consider it as a mere incident or an offshoot of another
special proceeding would be to denigrate its role and significance as the appropriate remedy available
under our remedial law system.

REPUBLIC vs. CA 255 SCRA 99


1. REMEDIAL LAW; SPECIAL PROCEEDINGS; RULE 108 OF THE RULES OF COURT; APPLICABLE
IN CASE AT BAR. - With regard to the second assignment of error in the petition, we hold that both
the Court of Appeals and the trial court erred in granting private respondents prayer for the correction
of the name of the child in the civil registry. Contrary to what the trial court thought, Rule 108 of the
Rules of Court applies to this- case and because its provision was not complied with, the decision of
the trial court, insofar as it ordered the correction of the name of the minor, is void and without force
or effect. The trial court was clearly in error in holding Rule 108 to be applicable only to the correction
of errors concerning the civil status of persons. This case falls under letter (o), referring to changes of
name. Indeed, it has been the uniform ruling of this Court that Art. 412 of the Civil Code - to implement
which Rule 108 was inserted in the Rules of Court in 1964 - covers those harmless and innocuous
changes, such as correction of a name that is clearly misspelled. Thus, in Yu v. Republic (21 SCRA
1018 [1967]) it was held that to change Sincio to Sencio which merely involves the substitution of the
first vowel i in the first name into the vowel e amounts merely to the righting of a clerical error.
In Labayo-Rowe v. Republic (168 SCRA 294 [1988]) it was held that the change of petitioners name
from Beatriz Labayo/Beatriz Labayu to Emperatriz Labayo is a mere innocuous alteration wherein a
summary proceeding is appropriate. Rule 108 thus applies to the present proceeding.
2. ID.; ID.; ID.; FAILURE TO IMPLEAD THE CIVIL REGISTRAR AS AN INDISPENSABLE PARTY AND
TO GIVE NOTICE BY PUBLICATION OF THE PETITION FOR CORRECTION OF ENTRY
RENDERS THE PROCEEDING OF THE TRIAL COURT NULL AND VOID; CASE AT BAR. - The
local civil registrar is thus required to be made a party to the proceeding. He is an indispensable party,
without whom no final determination of the case can be had. As he was not impleaded in this case
much less given notice of the proceeding, the decision of the trial court, insofar as it granted the prayer
for the correction of entry, is void. The absence of-an indispensable party in a case renders ineffectual
all the proceedings subsequent to the filing of the complaint including the judgment. Nor was notice of
the petition for correction of entry published as required by Rule 108, 4 which reads: 4. Notice and
publication. - Upon filing of the petition, the court shall, by an order, fix the time and place for the
hearing of the same, and cause reasonable notice thereof to be given to the persons named in the
petition. The court shall also cause the order to be published once a week for three (3) consecutive
weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the province. While there was notice given by
publication in this case, it was notice of the petition for adoption made in compliance with Rule 99,
4. In that notice only the prayer for adoption of the minor was stated. Nothing was, mentioned that in
addition the correction of his name in the civil registry was also being sought. The local civil registrar -
was thus deprived of notice and, consequently, of the opportunity to be heard. The necessary
consequence of the failure to implead the civil registrar as an indispensable party and to give notice
by publication of the petition for correction of entry was to render the proceeding of the trial court, so
far as the correction of entry was concerned, null and void for lack of jurisdiction both as to party and
as to the subject matter.
petition for the adoption of Midael C. Mazon with prayer for the correction of the minors first name Midael
to Michael.

The Solicitor General appealed to the Court of Appeals reiterating his contention that the correction of
names cannot be affected in the same proceeding for adoption. As additional ground for his appeal, he
argued that the RTC did not acquire jurisdiction over the Case for adoption because in the notice
published in the newspaper, the name given was Michael, instead of Midael, which is the name of the
minor given in his Certificate of Live Birth.
The first issue is whether on the facts stated, the RTC acquired jurisdiction over the private respondents
petition for adoption.
While there was notice given by publication in this case, it was notice of the petition for adoption made
in compliance with Rule 99, 4. In that notice only the prayer for adoption of the minor was stated. Nothing
was mentioned that in addition the correction of his name in the civil registry was also being sought. The
local civil registrar was thus deprived of notice and, consequently, of the opportunity to be heard.
The necessary consequence of the failure to implead the civil registrar as an indispensable party and
to give notice by publication of the petition for correction of entry was to render the proceeding of the trial
court, so far as the correction of entry was concered, null and void for lack of jurisdiction both as to party
and as to the subject matter.[9]
With regard to the second assignment of error in the petition, we hold that both the Court of Appeals
and the trial court erred in granting private respondents prayer for the correction of the name of the child in
the civil registry.
Contrary to what the trial court thought, Rule 108 of the Rules of Court applies to this case and because
its provision was not complied with, the decision of the trial court, insofar as it ordered the correction of the
name of the minor, is void and without force or effect.
The trial court was clearly in error in holding Rule 108 to be applicable only to the correction of errors
concerning the civil status of persons. Rule 108, 2
This case falls under letter (o), referring to changes of name. Indeed, it has been the uniform ruling of
this Court that Art. 412 of the Civil Code - to implement which Rule 108 was inserted in the rules of Court
in 1964 - covers those harmless and innocuous changes, such as correction of a name that is clearly
misspelled.

REYES vs. MAURICIO 636 SCRA

We are in full accord with the Court of Appeals when it ruled that Eugenio cannot collaterally attack the
status of Leonida in the instant petition.[19]

As an incidental issue, Leonidas legal standing as a party was also assailed by Eugenio. Eugenio submitted
that the complaint was rendered moot with the death of Librada, Godofredos sole compulsory heir. Eugenio contended
that Leonida is a mere ward of Godofredo and Librada, thus, not a legal heir. [18]

We are in full accord with the Court of Appeals when it ruled that Eugenio cannot collaterally attack the
status of Leonida in the instant petition.[19]

It is settled law that filiation cannot be collaterally attacked.[20] Well-known civilista Dr. Arturo M. Tolentino, in his
book Civil Code of the Philippines, Commentaries and Jurisprudence, noted that the aforecited doctrine is rooted from
the provisions of the Civil Code of the Philippines
In Braza v. City Civil Registrar of Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental,[22] the Court stated that legitimacy and
filiation can be questioned only in a direct action seasonably filed by the proper party, and not through collateral
attack.[23]

The same rule is applied to adoption such that it cannot also be made subject to a collateral attack. In Reyes v.
Sotero,[24] this Court reiterated that adoption cannot be assailed collaterally in a proceeding for the settlement of a
decedents estate.[25] Furthermore, in Austria v. Reyes,[26] the Court declared that the legality of the adoption by the
testatrix can be assailed only in a separate action brought for that purpose and cannot be subject to collateral attack. [27]
NERY vs. SAMPANA 734 SCRA
Sampana alleged that he initially frowned upon the proposed adoption because of the old age, civil status and
nationality of the alien adopter, but Nery insisted on being adopted. Thus, Sampana suggested that “if the [alien]
adopter would be married to a close relative of [Nery], the intended [adoption by an alien] could be possible.”
Sampana, then, required Nery to submit the documents, including the marriage contracts and the certification of the
alien’s qualification to adopt from the Japanese Embassy (certification). Nery furnished the blurred marriage contract,
but not the certification. Sampana alleged that he prepared the petition for adoption but did not file it because he was
still waiting for the certification.
In the present case, Sampana admitted that he received “one package fee” for both cases of annulment and
adoption. Despite receiving this fee, he unjustifiably failed to file the petition for adoption and fell short of his duty
of due diligence and candor to his client. Sampana’s proffered excuse of waiting for the certification before filing
the petition for adoption is disingenuous and flimsy. In his position paper, he suggested to Nery that if the alien
adopter would be married to her close relative, the intended adoption could be possible. Under the Domestic
Adoption Act provision, which Sampana suggested, the alien adopter can jointly adopt a relative within the fourth
degree of consanguinity or affinity of his/her Filipino spouse, and the certification of the alien’s qualification to
adopt is waived.

BARTOLOME vs. SSS G.R. No. 192531, 12 November 2014

In ECC-related death benefit claims, dependent parents as beneficiaries include biological parents in
case the decedent was adopted.

Petitioner Bernardina P. Bartolome initiated a claim for death benefits under PD 626 with the Social
Security System (SSS) at San Fernando City, La Union, over the death of her son John Colcol (John), who
she gave up for adoption, and alleged that she was the sole remaining beneficiary. Previously, John was
employed as electrician by Defendant Scanmar Maritime Services, Inc., on board the vessel Maersk
Danville. He was covered by the government’s Employees’ Compensation Program (ECP). Unfortunately,
he met an accident on board the vessel wherein steel plates fell on him resulting in his death.

When petitioner filed her claim, the SSS denied it stating that she was no longer the parent of John as he
was legally adopted by Cornelio Colocol based on the documentary evidence submitted by petitioner
herself. On appeal, the Employees’ Compensation Commission (ECC) affirmed the SSS ruling through a
decision dated 17 March 17 2010 citing Rule XV, Sec. 1(c)(1) of the Amended Rules on Employees’
Compensation.

HELD: Petitioner was entitled to receive the claim for death benefits. “Based on Cornelio’s death
certificate, it appears that John’s adoptive father died on October 26, 1987, or only less than three (3)
years since the decree of adoption on February 4, 1985, which attained finality. As such, it was error for
the ECC to have ruled that it was not duly proven that the adoptive parent, Cornelio, has already passed
away.

The ECC Rule limiting death benefit claims to the legitimate parents is contrary to law. “Rule XV, Sec.
1(c)(1) of the Amended Rules on Employees’ Compensation deviates from the clear language of Art. 167 (j)
of the Labor Code, as amended…” Hence, it was held that “Rule XV of the Amended Rules on Employees’
Compensation is patently a wayward restriction of and a substantial deviation from Article 167 (j) of the
Labor Code when it interpreted the phrase ‘dependent parents’ to refer to ‘legitimate parents.'”

As the law does not define “dependent parents”, it should be understood to have a general and inclusive
scope. Thus, “the term ‘parents’ in the phrase ‘dependent parents’ in the afore-quoted Article 167 (j) of the
Labor Code is used and ought to be taken in its general sense and cannot be unduly limited to ‘legitimate
parents’ as what the ECC did. The phrase ‘dependent parents’ should, therefore, include all parents,
whether legitimate or illegitimate and whether by nature or by adoption. When the law does not
distinguish, one should not distinguish. Plainly, ‘dependent parents’ are parents, whether legitimate or
illegitimate, biological or by adoption, who are in need of support or assistance.
“Moreover, the same Article 167 (j), as couched, clearly shows that Congress did not intend to limit the
phrase ‘dependent parents’ to solely legitimate parents. At the risk of being repetitive, Article 167 provides
that ‘in their absence, the dependent parents and subject to the restrictions imposed on dependent
children, the illegitimate children and legitimate descendants who are secondary beneficiaries.’ Had the
lawmakers contemplated ‘dependent parents’ to mean legitimate parents, then it would have simply said
descendants and not ‘legitimate descendants.’ The manner by which the provision in question was crafted
undeniably show that the phrase ‘dependent parents’ was intended to cover all parents –
legitimate, illegitimate or parents by nature or adoption.”

The law is clear that “the biological parents retain their rights of succession to the estate of their child who
was the subject of adoption. While the benefits arising from the death of an SSS covered employee do not
form part of the estate of the adopted child, the pertinent provision on legal or intestate succession at least
reveals the policy on the rights of the biological parents and those by adoption vis-à-vis the right to receive
benefits from the adopted.”

As a result, it was held that “Cornelio’s death at the time of John’s minority resulted in the restoration of
petitioner’s parental authority over the adopted child.”

“Moreover, John, in his SSS application, named petitioner as one of his beneficiaries for his benefits
under RA 8282, otherwise known as the ‘Social Security Law.’ While RA 8282 does not cover
compensation for work-related deaths or injury and expressly allows the designation of beneficiaries who
are not related by blood to the member unlike in PD 626, John’s deliberate act of indicating petitioner as
his beneficiary at least evinces that he, in a way, considered petitioner as his dependent. Consequently, the
confluence of circumstances – from Cornelio’s death during John’s minority, the restoration of
petitioner’s parental authority, the documents showing singularity of address, and John’s clear intention
to designate petitioner as a beneficiary – effectively made petitioner, to Our mind, entitled to death
benefit claims as a secondary beneficiary under PD 626 as a dependent parent.”

In sum, “the Decision of the ECC dated March 17, 2010 is bereft of legal basis. Cornelio’s adoption of
John, without more, does not deprive petitioner of the right to receive the benefits stemming from John’s
death as a dependent parent given Cornelio’s untimely demise during John’s minority. Since the parent by
adoption already died, then the death benefits under the Employees’ Compensation Program shall accrue
solely to herein petitioner, John’s sole remaining beneficiary.”

Ilusorio vs. Bildner


GR No. 139789, May 12, 2000

May a wife secure a writ of habeas corpus to compel her husband to live with her in conjugal bliss? 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.

FACTS:

Potenciano Ilusorio, a lawyer, 86 year old of age, possessed extensive property valued at millions of pesos. For many
year, he was the Chairman of the Board and President of Baguio Country Club. He was married with Erlinda Ilusorio,
herein petitioner, for 30 years and begotten 6 children namely Ramon, Lin Illusorio-Bildner (defendant), Maximo,
Sylvia, Marietta and Shereen. They separated from bed and board in 1972. Potenciano lived at Makati every time he
was in Manila and at Illusorio Penthouse, Baguio Country Club when he was in Baguio City. On the other hand, the
petitioner lived in Antipolo City.

In 1997, upon Potenciano’s arrival from US, he stayed with her wife for about 5 months in Antipolo city. The children,
Sylvia and Lin, alleged that during this time their mother overdose Potenciano which caused the latter’s health to
deteriorate. In February 1998, Erlinda filed with RTC petition for guardianship over the person and property of
Potenciano due to the latter’s advanced age, frail health, poor eyesight and impaired judgment. In May 1998, after
attending a corporate meeting in Baguio, Potenciano did not return to Antipolo instead lived at Cleveland
Condominium in Makati. In March 1999, petitioner filed with CA petition for habeas corpus to have the custody of
his husband alleging that the respondents refused her demands to see and visit her husband and prohibited Potenciano
from returning to Antipolo.

ISSUE: Whether or not the petitioned writ of habeas corpus should be issued.

HELD:

A writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention, or by which the rightful custody of a
person is withheld from the one entitled thereto. To justify the grant for such petition, the restraint of liberty must an
illegal and involuntary deprivation of freedom of action. The illegal restraint of liberty must be actual and effective
not merely nominal or moral.

Evidence showed that there was no actual and effective detention or deprivation of Potenciano’s liberty that would
justify issuance of the writ. The fact that the latter was 86 years of age and under medication does not necessarily
render him mentally incapacitated. He still has the capacity to discern his actions. With his full mental capacity
having the right of choice, he may not be the subject of visitation rights against his free choice. Otherwise, he will be
deprived of his right to privacy.

The case at bar does not involve the right of a parent to visit a minor child but the right of a wife to visit a
husband. In any event, that the husband refuses to see his wife for private reasons, he is at liberty to do so
without threat or any penalty attached to the exercise of his right. Coverture, is a matter beyond judicial
authority and cannot be enforced by compulsion of a writ of habeas corpus carried out by the sheriffs or by
any other process.

SERAPIO vs. SANDIGANBAYAN 396 SCRA 443

Facts: Atty. Edward Serapio (petitioner) filed two petitions in the SC; these are: 1. A
petition for certiorari assailing the resolutions of the Third division of the Sandiganbayan
denying his petition for bail, motion for reinvestigation and motion to quash; 2. Petition for
Habeas Corpus.
Petitioner was charged with the crime of plunder together with Former President Joseph
Estrada and son Jinggoy Estrada among others. Petitioner was a member of the Board of
Trustees and legal counsel of Erap Muslim Youth Foundation. He allegedly received, on
behalf of the said foundation, millions of pesos coming from illegal activities.

The Ombudsman recommended the filing of a case against him before the Sandiganbayan.
A warrant for his arrest was issued. Upon learning of the said warrant he voluntarily
surrendered to the PNP. Petitioner, thereafter, file an Urgent Motion for Bail but such motion
is opposed by the prosecution for the reason that petitioner should be arraign first before he
can avail of Bail. Later on Petitioner simultaneously filed a motion to quash.
The bail hearing was reset several times due to various pleadings filed by petitioner and the
prosecution.

Due to this, petitioner filed a petition for habeas corpus for the reason that the prosecution
have waived their right to present evidence in opposition to his petition for bail; the
prosecution launched an endless barrage of obstructive and dilatory moves to prevent the
conduct of the bail hearings; and, on the failure of the People to adduce strong evidence of
his guilt. For the said reasons, he is still being deprived of his liberty.

Petitioner cited also Moncupa vs. Enrile, which in such case the Court held that habeas
corpus extends to instances where detention, while valid from its inception, has later
become arbitrary.

Issue: Whether the petition habeas corpus should be granted?


Decision: No. SC finds no basis for the issuance of the writ of habeas corpus. General rule
applies.
“Petition for habeas corpus is not the appropriate remedy for asserting ones right to bail. It
cannot be availed of where accused is entitled to bail not as a matter of right but on the
discretion of the court and the latter has not abused such discretion in refusing to grant bail,
or has not even exercised said discretion. The proper recourse is to file an application for
bail with the court where the criminal case is pending and to allow hearings thereon to
proceed.”
Moncupa vs Enrile does not apply in this case because petitioner’s restraint of liberty did not
become arbitrary. His application for bail has yet to commence (to be heard).

The delay in the hearing of his petition for bail cannot be pinned solely to the
Sandiganbayan or on the prosecution because he himself is partly to be blamed (his actions
caused delay too.

As a general rule, the writ of habeas corpus will not issue where the person alleged to be
restrained of his liberty in custody of an officer under a process issued by the court which
jurisdiction to do so.

In exceptional circumstances, habeas corpus may be granted by the courts even when the
person concerned is detained pursuant to a valid arrest or his voluntary surrender, for this
writ of liberty is recognized as the fundamental instrument for safeguarding individual
freedom against arbitrary and lawless state action due to its ability to cut through barriers
of form and procedural mazes.

LACSON vs. PEREZ 357 SCRA 756

Facts: On 01 May 2001, Gloria Arroyo, faced by an angry and violent mob armed with
deadly weapons assaulting and attempting to break into Malacaang, issued Proclamation
No. 38 declaring that there was a state of rebellion in the National Capital Region. She
likewise issued General Order No. 1 directing the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the
Philippine National Police to suppress the rebellion in the National Capital Region.
Warrantless arrests of several alleged leaders and promoters of the rebellion were
thereafter effected. On 06 May 2001 she ordered the lifting of the declaration of a state of
rebellion in Metro Manila. Petitioners, Panfilo Lacson, Cezar Mancao and Michael Rey Aquino
filed with an urgent application for the issuance of temporary restraining order and/or writ
of preliminary injunction and Miriam Santiago filed mandamus and/or review of the factual
basis for the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, with prayer for a
temporary restraining order. The petitions assail the declaration of a state of rebellion by
Gloria Arroyo and the warrantless arrests allegedly effected by virtue thereof, as having no
basis both in fact an in law.
Issue: Whether or not the Proclamation No 38 and General Order No 1 are constitutional.
Decision: Petitions are dismissed. The instant petitions have been rendered moot and
academic as Gloria Arroyo ordered the lifting of the declaration of a state of rebellion on 06
May 2001.

SANGCA vs. CITY PROSECUTOR OF CEBU 524 SCRA 610

Facts: Anisah Impal Sangca (petitioner) filed the instant case praying for the issuance of a
writ of habeas corpus and the release of Lovely Impal Adam who was detained in Cebu City
for alleged violation of the Drugs law (R.A. 9165).
Lovely Impal Adam was arrested due to an entrapment operation. A case was filed against
her but the prosecutors found that there was no probable cause or enough evidence to try
her (the alleged buy-bust operation was not proven by the police officers). Hence this
petition.

Issue:
Decision: Yes, but such is moot and academic because Adam has already been released
pending this petition.
“A writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention in which
any person is deprived of his liberty, or in which the rightful custody of any person is
withheld from the person entitled to it. Its essential object and purpose is to inquire into all
manner of involuntary restraint and to relieve a person from it if such restraint is illegal. The
singular function of a petition for habeas corpus is to protect and secure the basic freedom
of physical liberty.”

MANGILA vs. PANGILINAN 701 SCRA 355

Facts: Anita Mangila, petitioner, was charged with seven of syndicated estafa. The
complaint against her arose from recruiting and promising employment to private
complainants as overseas contract workers in Toronto, Canada without lawful authority from
POEA.
By reason of the charged against petitioner, a warrant of arrest was issued against her. She
was arrested. She then filed a petition for habeas corpus before the CA alleging that she is
deprived of the remedy of a motion to quash or a motion to recall the warrant of arrest
because Judge Pangilinan (Judge who issued the warrant) had already forwarded the entire
records of the case to the City Prosecutor who had no authority to lift or recall the warrant.
CA denied the petition.

Issue:
Decision: Habeas corpus is a speedy and effective remedy devised to relieve persons from
unlawful restraint. Petitioner’s restraint in this case in NOT unlawful. She had been arrested
and detained by virtue of the valid warrant issued for her arrest.
The objective of the writ of habeas corpus is to inquire into the legality of the detention,
and, if the detention is found to be illegal, to require the release of the detainee. Equally
well-settled, however, is that the writ will not issue where the person in whose behalf the
writ is sought is out on bail, or is in the custody of an officer under process issued by a
court or judge with jurisdiction or by virtue of a judgment or order of a court of record.

Her proper remedy was to bring the supposed irregularities attending the conduct of the
(preliminary investigation) and the issuance of the warrant for her arrest to the attention of
the City Prosecutor for appropriate action.
ELEOSIDA vs. CIVIL REGISTRAR OF QC 5/9/02

Facts: This is a petition for review on certiorari of the Decision of the RTC of Quezon City
dismissing motu propio the petition for Ma. Lourdes Eleosida to correct some entries in the
birth certificate of her son, Charles Christian.
Petitioner seeks to correct in the birth cert. of her son the following:

1. The surname “Borbon” should be changed to Eleosida (since the parents were never
married; the child is illegitimate and, therefore, should follow the mother’s surname;
2. The date of the wedding should be blank;
3. Petitioner’s name should be Ma. Lourdes Eleosida (instead of Borbon).
No opposition was made to this petition.

RTC, however, dismissed it on the basis that only clerical errors (CLERICAL ERRORS) of a
harmless and innocuous nature like misspelled name, occupation of the parents, etc. may
be subject of judicial order authorizing changes or corrections and not as may affect the civil
status, nationality or citizenship of the person (substantial/material change/error) involved.

Hence this petition.

Issue: Whether changes or corrections which are substantial may be subject of a judicial
proceeding.
Decision: Yes, Court find merit in the petition.
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. (Note: CLERICAL -SUMMARY; SUBSTANTIAL- ADVERSARIAL)

If all the procedural requirements under Rule 108 (Notice and publication [especially])
(Note: Adversarial) have been followed, it was therefore error for the trial court to dismiss
the petition motu propio without allowing the petitioner to present evidence to support her
petition (and all the other persons who have an interest over the matter to oppose the
same).

BRAZA vs. CIVIL REGISTRAR OF NEGROS OCCIDENTAL 607 SCRA (2009)


Facts: Petitioner Ma. Cristina Torres Braza is the wife of Pablo Sicad Braza Jr., the latter
died in a vehicular accident in Bandung, West Java, Indonesia.
During the wake following the repatriation of his (Pablo’s) remains in the Philippines,
Respondent Lucille Titular and her son, Patrick Alvin Titutar showed up and introduced
themselves as the wife and son respectively, of the deceased. Petitioner Cristina thereupon
made inquiries and in the course of which she obtained Patrick Alvin’s birth certificate from
the Local Civil Registrar of Negros Occidental which had states that:

1. Pablo S. Braza as the father of Patrick Alvin; the latter was acknowledged by the father
on January 13, 1997;
2. Patrick Alvin was legitimated by virtue of the subsequent marriage of his parents.
Therefore, his name is changed to Patrick Alvin Titular Braza.
Cristina likewise obtained a copy of a marriage contract showing Pablo and Lucille were
married.

Cristina and her co-petitioner filed before the RTC of Negros a petition to correct the entries
in the birth certificate record of Patrick in the Local Civil Registry. They contended that
Patrick could not have been legitimated by the supposed subsequent marriage between
Lucille and Pablo because said marriage is bigamous on account of a valid and subsisting
marriage between her (Cristina) and Pablo. Petitioner prayed for the:

 Correction of the entries in Patrick’s birth record with respect to his legitimation, the
name of the father and his acknowledgment and the use of the last name “BRAZA”;
 A directive to Leon, Cecilia and Lucille, all surnamed Titular, as guardians of the minor
Patrick, to submit Patrick to DNA testing to determine his paternity and filiation;
 The declaration of nullity of the legitimation of Patrick as stated in his birth certificate
and, for this purpose, the declaration of the marriage between Lucille and Pablo as
bigamous.
Respondent filed a motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction.

RTC: Trial Court dismissed the petition without prejudice, holding that in a special
proceeding for correction of entry, the court, which is not acting as a family court, has no
jurisdiction over an action to annul the marriage of Lucille and Pablo, impugn the legitimacy
of Patrick, and order Patrick to be subjected to a DNA test, hence, the controversy should
be ventilated in an ordinary adversarial action.
MR: denied.
Hence, this petition for review.

Issue: Whether the RTC has jurisdiction over the subject case?
Decision: Petition is dismissed. Petition to correct the entries (Rule 108) is a wrong remedy
in this case because the trial court herein has no jurisdiction to nullify marriages and rule on
legitimacy and filiation.
The allegations of the petition filed before the TC clearly show that petitioners’ seek to
nullify the marriage between Pablo and Lucille on the ground that it is bigamous and impugn
Patrick’s filiation in connection with which they ask the court to order Patrick to be subjected
to a DNA test.

It is well settled doctrine that validity of marriages as well as legitimacy and filiation can be
questioned in a direct action seasonably filed by the proper party, and not through a
collateral attack such as the petition filed before the court a quo.

RULE 108 OF THE RULES OF COURT (vis a vis Art. 412 of the Civil Code)
 It charts the procedure by which an entry in the civil registry may be cancelled or
corrected. The proceeding contemplated therein may generally be used ONLY TO
CORRECT CLERICAL, SPELLING, TYPOGRAPHICAL AND OTHER INNOCUOUS ERRORS IN
THE CIVIL REGISTRY.
CLERICAL ERROR/SUBSTANTIAL ERROR
 A clerical error is one which is visible to the eyes or obvious to the understanding; an
error made by a clerk or a transcriber; a mistake in copying or writing; or a harmless
change such as a correction of name that is clearly misspelled or of a misstatement of
the occupation of the parent.
 Substantial or contentious alterations may be allowed only in adversarial
proceedings, in which all interested parties are impleaded and due process is properly
observed.

In Re: Petition for Change of Name of Julian Lim Carulasan Wang GR No 159966 30 March 2005

Facts: A petition was filed by Anna Lisa Wang for the change of name and/or
correction/cancellation of entry in the Civil Registry of her son, a minor, Julian Lin Carulasan
Wang before the RTC of Cebu City.
Julian was the son of Anna Lisa Wang and Sing-Foe Wang. They were not yet married to
each other when Julian was born. Subsequently, when Julian’s parents got married, the
latter executed a deed of legitimation of their son so that the child’s name was changed
from Julian Lin Carulasan to Julian Lin Carulasan Wang.

Reason: Since the family plans to stay in Singapore and, since in Singapore middle names
or the maiden surname of the mother are not carried in a persons name, they anticipated
that Julian will be discriminated against because of his current registered name which
carries a middle name. Also, the spouses’ daughter and Julian might get confused if they
are really brothers and sisters because they have different surnames. Lastly, Carulasan
sounds funny in Singapore’s Mandarin language since they do not have the letter “R” but if
there is, they pronounce it as “L”. It is for these reasons why the name of Julian Lin
Carulasan Wang is requested to be changed to Julian Lin Wang.
RTC: denied the petition. It found that the reasons abovementioned does not fall within the
grounds recognized by law. It further ruled that the real reason behind is only convenience.
MR: Denied. The Singaporean practice of not carrying a middle name does not justify the
dropping of the middle name of a legitimate Filipino child who intends to study there. The
dropping of the middle name would be tantamount to giving due recognition to or
application of the laws of Singapore instead of Philippine law which is controlling.
Hence, this Appeal. SC required the OGS to comment on the petition.

OSG: Trial Court is correct. legitimate children have the right to bear the surnames of both
their mother and father, and such right cannot be denied by the mere expedient of dropping
the same (Family Code). Mere convenience is not sufficient to support a petition for change
of name and/or cancellation of entry.
Issue: Whether the name mother’s surname should be dropped in the instant case because
it is a common practice in Singapore to omit said surname?
Decision: No. Petition is denied.
The State has an interest in the names borne by individuals and entities for purposes of
identification, and that A CHANGE OF NAME IS A PRIVILEGE AND NOT A RIGHT, so that
before a person can be authorized to change his name given him either in his certificate of
birth or civil registry, he must show PROPER AND REASONABLE CAUSE, or ANY
COMPELLING REASON which may justify such change. Otherwise, the request should be
denied.

VALID GROUNDS FOR CHANGE OF NAME:


1. When the name is ridiculous, dishonorable or extremely difficult to write or pronounce;
2. When the change results as a legal consequence, as in legitimation;
3. When the change will avoid confusion;
4. When one has continuously used and been known since childhood by a Filipino name,
and was unaware of alien parentage;
5. A sincere desire to adopt a Filipino name to erase signs of former alienage, all in good
faith and without prejudicing anybody; and
6. 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 GRANTING/DENYING:
The question of proper and reasonable cause is left to the sound discretion of the court. The
evidence presented need only be satisfactory to the court and not all the best evidence
available.

What is involved is not a mere matter of allowance or disallowance of the request, but a
JUDICIOUS evaluation of the sufficiency and propriety of the justifications advanced in
support thereof, mindful of the consequent results in the event of its grant and with the sole
prerogative for making such determination being lodged in the courts.

DROPPING OF THE MIDDLE NAME FROM HIS REGISTERED NAME? – No law supports such.
MIDDLE NAME PURPOSE
1. Middle names serve to identify the maternal lineage or filiation of a person as well as
further distinguish him from others who may have the same given name and surname
as he has.
IN THE CASE AT BAR
1. The only reason advanced by petitioner for the dropping of 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 name.
2. 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.
In The Matter of The Adoption of Stephanie Nathy Astorga Garcia GR No 148311 31 March 2005

Facts: Honorato Catindig, petitioner, filed a petition to adopt his minor illegitimate child
Stephanie Nathy Astorga-Garcia. He alleged therein, among others, that Stephanie has
been using her mothers middle name and surname. 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.
Trial Court rendered a decision granting the petition for adoption and declaring the name of
the adoptee as STEPHANIE NATHY CATINDIG, without including the mother’s surname as
the child’s middle name.

Petition 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. Trial
Court denied the motion holding 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 an illegitimate child, upon adoption by her natural father, use the surname
of her natural mother as her middle name?
Decision: There are various laws regarding the use of Surname or Family name. However,
the law is silent as to the use of Middle name.
In case of an adopted child, the law provides that the adopted shall bear the surname of the
adopters.

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 the Family Code.

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 mother.

Additionally, as aptly stated by both parties, Stephanie’s continued use of her mother’s
surname as her middle name will maintain her maternal lineage. It is to be noted that Art.
189(3) of the FC and Sec. 18 of RA 8552 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.
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.

REPUBLIC v. CARLITO I. KHO et al. 526 SCRA 177 (2007)

Carlito Kho (Kho) and his family applied for the correction of various details in their birth certificate. Kho
petitioned for (1) change the citizenship of his mother from “Chinese” to “Filipino”; (2) delete “John” from his
name; and (3) delete the word “married” opposite the date of marriage of his parents. The last correction was
ordered to be effected likewise in the birth certificates of respondents Michael, Mercy Nona, and Heddy Moira.

The petition from a non-adversarial nature of the change is premised on Republic Act No. 9048, which allows first
name and nickname in birth certificates without judicial order. The Municipal officer approved of the change. The
Solicitor General objected to the correction on the ground that the correction not merely clerical but requires an
adversarial proceeding. The Court of Appeals found in favor of Kho.

ISSUE:

Whether or not Kho‘s request for change in the details of their birth certificate requires an adversarial proceeding

HELD:

It can not be gainsaid that the petition, insofar as it sought to change the citizenship of Carlito‘s mother as it appeared
in his birth certificate and delete the “married” status of Carlito‘s parents in his and his siblings‘ respective birth
certificates, as well as change the date of marriage of Carlitoand Marivel involves the correction of not just clerical
errors of a harmless and innocuous nature. Rather, the changes entail substantial and controversial amendments.

For the change involving the nationality of Carlito‘s mother as reflected in his birth certificate is a grave
and important matter that has a bearing and effect on the citizenship and nationality not only of the parents, but also
of the offspring.

Further, the deletion of the entry that Carlito‘s and his siblings‘ parents were “married” alters their filiation from
“legitimate” to “illegitimate,” with significant implications on their successional and other rights. Clearly, the changes
sought can only be granted in an adversary proceeding.

The enactment in March 2001 of Republic Act No. 9048, otherwise known as “An Act Authorizing the City or
Municipal Civil Registrar or the Consul General to Correct A Clerical or Typographical Error In An Entry and/or
Change of First Name or Nickname in the Civil Register Without Need of Judicial Order,” has
been considered to lend legislative affirmation to the judicial precedence that substantial corrections to the civil status
of persons recorded in the civil registry may be effected through the filing of a petition under Rule 108.

When all the procedural requirements under Rule 108 are thus followed, the appropriate adversary proceeding
necessary to effect substantial corrections to the entries of the civil register is satisfied.

REPUBLIC vs. SILVERIO 537 SCRA


FACTS:
Rommel Jacinto Dantes Silverio having undergone a sex reassignment surgery, sought to have his first
name changed from Rommel to Mely, and his sex from male to female. Trial court granted his petition.
CA, however, upon appeal filed by the Republic of the Philippines thru the OSG, reversed the trial court
decision, holding that there is no law allowing the change of entries of either name or sex in the birth
certificate by reason of sex alteration.

ISSUE:
Whether or not Rommel's first name and sex be changed on the ground of sex reassignment.

RULING: No. There is no law authorizes the change of entry as of sex and first name through the
intervention of sex reassignment surgery. Article 376 of the Civil Code as amended by RA 9048 (Clerical
Error Law), together with Article 412 of the same Code, change of name or sex in the birth certificate is
allowed by the courts so long as clerical or typographical errors are involved.

Changes sought by Silverio will have serious legal and public policy consequences. To grant this petition
filed by Silverio will greatly alter the laws on marriage and family relations. Second, there will be major
changes in statutes that underscore the public policy in relation to women.

Republic vs. Cagandahan


GR. No. 166676, September 12, 2008

FACTS:

Jennifer Cagandahan was registered as a female in her Certificate of Live Birth. During her childhood years, she
suffered from clitoral hypertrophy and was later on diagnosed that her ovarian structures had minimized. She
likewise has no breast nor menstruation. Subsequently, she was diagnosed of having Congenital Adrenal
Hyperplasia (CAH), a condition where those afflicted possess secondary male characteristics because of too much
secretion of male hormones, androgen. According to her, for all interests and appearances as well as in mind and
emotion, she has become a male person. She filed a petition at RTC Laguna for Correction of Entries in her Birth
Certificate such that her gender or sex be changed to male and her first name be changed to Jeff.

ISSUE: WON correction of entries in her birth certificate should be granted.

HELD:

The Court considered the compassionate calls for recognition of the various degrees of intersex as variations which
should not be subject to outright denial. SC is of the view that where the person is biologically or naturally intersex
the determining factor in his gender classification would be what the individual, having reached the age of majority,
with good reason thinks of his/her sex. As in this case, respondent, thinks of himself as a male and considering that
his body produces high levels of male hormones, there is preponderant biological support for considering him as
being a male. Sexual development in cases of intersex persons makes the gender classification at birth
inconclusive. It is at maturity that the gender of such persons, like respondent, is fixed.

REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES v. DR. NORMA S. LUGSANAY UY, G.R. No. 198010, August 12, 2013

Remedial Law; Cancellation or correction of entries in the civil registry. It is clear from the foregoing
discussion that when a petition for cancellation or correction of an entry in the civil register involves
substantial and controversial alterations, including those on citizenship, legitimacy of paternity or filiation,
or legitimacy of marriage, a strict compliance with the requirements of Rule 108 of the Rules of Court is
mandated. If the entries in the civil register could be corrected or changed through mere
summary proceedings and not through appropriate action wherein all parties who may be affected by the
entries are notified or represented, the door to fraud or other mischief would be set open, the
consequence of which might be detrimental and far reaching.

Service of summons as a requisite of due process. The fact that the notice of hearing was published in a
newspaper of general circulation and notice thereof was served upon the State will not change the nature
of the proceedings taken. A reading of Sections 4 and 5, Rule 108 of the Rules of Court shows that the
Rules mandate two sets of notices to different potential oppositors: one given to the persons named in the
petition and another given to other persons who are not named in the petition but nonetheless may be
considered interested or affected parties. Summons must, therefore, be served not for the purpose of
vesting the courts with jurisdiction but to comply with the requirements of fair play and due process to
afford the person concerned the opportunity to protect his interest if he so chooses.

In this case, respondent sought the correction of entries in her birth certificate, particularly those pertaining to her
first name, surname and citizenship. She sought the correction allegedly to reflect the name which she has been
known for since childhood, including her legal documents such as passport and school and professional records.
She likewise relied on the birth certificates of her full blood siblings who bear the surname “Lugsanay” instead of
“Sy” and citizenship of “Filipino” instead of “Chinese.” The changes, however, are obviously not mere clerical as
they touch on respondent’s filiation and citizenship. In changing her surname from “Sy” (which is the surname of
her father) to “Lugsanay” (which is the surname of her mother), she, in effect, changes her status from legitimate
to illegitimate; and in changing her citizenship from Chinese to Filipino, the same affects her rights and obligations
in this country. Clearly, the changes are substantial.

It is clear from the foregoing discussion that when a petitiOn for cancellation or correction of an entry in the civil
register involves substantial and controversial alterations, including those on citizenship, legitimacy of paternity or
filiation, or legitimacy of marriage, a strict compliance with the requirements of Rule 1 08 of the Rules of Court is
mandated. 44 If the entries in the civil register could be corrected or changed through mere summary proceedings
and not through appropriate action wherein all parties who may be affected by the entries are notified or
represented, the door to fraud or other mischief would be set open, the consequence of which might be
detrimental and far reaching.

Fujiki v Marinay (Conflict of Laws)


Fujiki v Marinay
2013

MINORU FUJIKI, Petitioner, -versus- MARIA PAZ GALELA MARINAY, SHINICHI MAEKARA, LOCAL
CIVIL REGISTRAR OF QUEZON CITY, and THE ADMINISTRATOR AND CIVIL REGISTRAR
GENERAL OF THE NATIONAL STATISTICS OFFICE,

FACTS:
Petitioner Minoru Fujiki (Fujiki) is a Japanese national who married respondent Maria Paz Galela Marinay
(Marinay) in the Philippines on 23 January 2004. The marriage did not sit well with petitioner’s parents.
Thus, Fujiki could not bring his wife to Japan where he resides. Eventually, they lost contact with each
other.

In 2008, Marinay met another Japanese, Shinichi Maekara (Maekara). Without the first marriage being
dissolved, Marinay and Maekara were married on 15 May 2008 in Quezon City, Philippines. Maekara
brought Marinay to Japan. However, Marinay allegedly suffered physical abuse from Maekara. She left
Maekara and started to contact Fujiki.
Fujiki and Marinay met in Japan and they were able to reestablish their relationship. In 2010, Fujiki helped
Marinay obtain a judgment from a family court in Japan which declared the marriage between Marinay
and Maekara void on the ground of bigamy. On 14 January 2011, Fujiki filed a petition in the RTC
entitled: “Judicial Recognition of Foreign Judgment (or Decree of Absolute Nullity of Marriage).”

DECISION OF LOWER COURTS:


(1) RTC: dismissed the petition for "Judicial Recognition of Foreign Judgment ·(or Decree of Absolute
Nullity of Marriage)" based on improper venue and the lack of personality of petitioner, Minoru Fujiki, to
file the petition.

ISSUES & RULING:


(1) Whether the Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment of Voidable
Marriages (A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC) is applicable.

No. Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment of Voidable Marriages (A.M.
No. 02-11-10-SC) does not apply in a petition to recognize a foreign judgment relating to the status of a
marriage where one of the parties is a citizen of a foreign country. Moreover, in Juliano-Llave v.
Republic, this Court held that the rule in A.M. No. 02- 11-10-SC that only the husband or wife can file a
declaration of nullity or annulment of marriage “does not apply if the reason behind the petition is
bigamy.” While the Philippines has no divorce law, the Japanese Family Court judgment is fully consistent
with Philippine public policy, as bigamous marriages are declared void from the beginning under Article
35(4) of the Family Code. Bigamy is a crime under Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code. Thus, Fujiki
can prove the existence of the Japanese Family Court judgment in accordance with Rule 132, Sections
24 and 25, in relation to Rule 39, Section 48(b) of the Rules of Court.

(2) Whether a husband or wife of a prior marriage can file a petition to recognize a foreign judgment
nullifying the subsequent marriage between his or her spouse and a foreign citizen on the ground of
bigamy.

Yes. “[t]he recognition of the foreign divorce decree may be made in a Rule 108 proceeding itself, as the
object of special proceedings (such as that in Rule 108 of the Rules of Court) is precisely to establish the
status or right of a party or a particular fact.”
Rule 108, Section 1 of the Rules of Court states:

Sec. 1. Who may file petition. — Any person interested in any act, event, order or decree concerning
the civil status of persons which has been recorded in the civil register, may file a verified petition
for the cancellation or correction of any entry relating thereto, with the Regional Trial Court of the province
where the corresponding civil registry is located. (Emphasis supplied)

There is no doubt that the prior spouse has a personal and material interest in maintaining the integrity of
the marriage he contracted and the property relations arising from it.

(3) Whether the Regional Trial Court can recognize the foreign judgment in a proceeding for cancellation
or correction of entries in the Civil Registry under Rule 108 of the Rules of Court.

Yes. There is neither circumvention of the substantive and procedural safeguards of marriage under
Philippine law, nor of the jurisdiction of Family Courts under R.A. No. 8369. A recognition of a foreign
judgment is not an action to nullify a marriage. It is an action for Philippine courts to recognize the
effectivity of a foreign judgment, which presupposes a case which was already tried and decided
under foreign law.

In the recognition of foreign judgments, Philippine courts are incompetent to substitute their judgment on
how a case was decided under foreign law. They cannot decide on the “family rights and duties, or on the
status, condition and legal capacity” of the foreign citizen who is a party to the foreign judgment. Thus,
Philippine courts are limited to the question of whether to extend the effect of a foreign judgment in the
Philippines. In a foreign judgment relating to the status of a marriage involving a citizen of a foreign
country, Philippine courts only decide whether to extend its effect to the Filipino party, under the rule
of lex nationalii expressed in Article 15 of the Civil Code.

For this purpose, Philippine courts will only determine (1) whether the foreign judgment is inconsistent
with an overriding public policy in the Philippines; and (2) whether any alleging party is able to prove an
extrinsic ground to repel the foreign judgment, i.e. want of jurisdiction, want of notice to the party,
collusion, fraud, or clear mistake of law or fact. If there is neither inconsistency with public policy nor
adequate proof to repel the judgment, Philippine courts should, by default, recognize the foreign judgment
as part of the comity of nations.

his purpose, Philippine courts will only determine (1) whether the foreign judgment is inconsistent with
an overriding public policy in the Philippines; and (2) whether any alleging party is able to prove an
extrinsic ground to repel the foreign judgment, i.e. want of jurisdiction, want of notice to the party,
collusion, fraud, or clear mistake of law or fact. If there is neither inconsistency with public policy nor
adequate proof to repel the judgment, Philippine courts should, by default, recognize the foreign
judgment as part of the comity of nations. Section 48(b), Rule 39 of the Rules of Court states that the
foreign judgment is already “presumptive evidence of a right between the parties.” Upon recognition of
the foreign judgment, this right becomes conclusive and the judgment serves as the basis for the
correction or cancellation of entry in the civil registry. The recognition of the foreign judgment nullifying
a bigamous marriage is a subsequent event that establishes a new status, right and fact that needs to be
reflected in the civil registry. Otherwise, there will be an inconsistency between the recognition of the
effectivity of the foreign judgment and the public records in the Philippines.”

PEOPLE vs. MERLINDA OLAYBAR

Merlinda wants to marry her boyfriend of five years, so she secured a Certificate of No Marriage from the NSO. To
her dismay, she discovered that she was married to Korean national Ye Son Sune on June 24, 2002 at the MTCC of
Cebu. Thus she filed a petition for cancellation of entries in the marriage certificate especially the entries in the wife
portion thereof. In support of her petition, she presented herself and Eufrocina, an employee of the MTCC. Merlina
testified that she could not have entered into a valid marriage with Yo because at the time of the solemnisation of the
marriage, she was then in Makati working as a medical distributor. She did not know her supposed husband, but
knew the witnesses named therein because she worked in a pension house. She believed that her name was used by a
certain Johnny, who owned a travel agency, when she gave her personal circumstances to him when she applied for
a passport. Eufrocina attested that the marriage was indeed celebrated inside their office at the MTCC, but claimed
that the wife who appeared was definitely not Merlinda. A document examiner also appeared and testified that the
signature appearing in the marriage contract was forged.
The Regional Trial Court granted Merlinda’s petition. The Office of the Solicitor General moved to reconsider the
order, but the same was denied by the RTC, hence, the OSG elevated the case to the Supreme Court on pure
question of law. According to the OSG, the grant of the petition by the OSG is tantamount to a declaration of nullity
of marriage of Merlinda, which should be done in an adversarial proceeding, not a Rule 108 petition. The petition
filed by Merlinda was therefore an action for declaration of nullity of marriage, in the guise of a Rule 108 petition.

Essentially, the petition raises fourissues: (1) whether the RTC erred in ruling that the correction on the
first name of petitioner and his mother can be done by the city civil registrar under R.A. No. 9048; (2)
whether the RTC erred in ruling that correcting the entry on petitioner’s birth certificate that his parents
were married on December 23, 1983 in Bicol to "not married" is substantial in nature requiring adversarial
proceedings; (3) whether the RTC erred in dismissing the petition for correction of entries; and (4)
whether the RTC erred in ruling that there is no proof that petitioner’s parents were not married on
December 23, 1983.

On the first issue, we agree with the RTC that the first name of petitioner and his mother as appearing in
his birth certificate can be corrected by the city civil registrar under R.A. No. 9048. We note that petitioner
no longer contested the RTC’s ruling on this point.4 Indeed, under Section 15 of R.A. No. 9048, clerical or
typographical errors on entries in a civil register can be corrected and changes of first name can be done
by the concerned city civil registrar without need of a judicial order. Aforesaid Section 1, as amended by
R.A. No. 10172, now reads: SECTION 1. Authority to Correct Clerical or Typographical Error and Change
of First Name or Nickname. – No entry in a civil register shall be changed or correctedwithout a judicial
order, except for clerical or typographical errors and change of first name or nickname, the day and
month in the dateof birth or sex of a person where it is patently clear that there was a clerical or
typographical error or mistake in the entry, which can be corrected or changed by the concerned city or
municipalcivil registraror consul general in accordance with the provisions of this Act and its implementing
rules and regulations.

n the second issue, we also agree with the RTC in ruling that correcting the entry on petitioner’s birth
certificate that his parents were married on December 23, 1983 in Bicol to "not married" is a substantial
correction requiring adversarial proceedings. Said correction is substantial as it will affect his legitimacy
and convert him from a legitimate child to an illegitimate one. In Republic v. Uy, 8 we held that corrections
of entries in the civil register including those on citizenship, legitimacyof paternity or filiation, or legitimacy
of marriage,involve substantial alterations. Substantial errors in a civil registry may be corrected and the
true facts established provided the parties aggrieved by the error avail themselves of the appropriate
adversaryproceedings.9

On the third issue, we likewise affirm the RTC in dismissing the petition for correction of entries. As
mentioned, petitioner no longer contested the RTC ruling that the correction he sought on his and his
mother’s first name can be done by the city civil registrar. Under the circumstances, we are constrained to
deny his prayer that the petition for correction of entries before the RTC bereinstated since the same
petition includes the correction he sought on his and his mother’s first name.

We clarify, however, that the RTC’s dismissal is without prejudice. As we said, petitioner can avail ofthe
administrative remedy for the correction of his and his mother’s first name.1âwphi1 He can also file a new
petition before the RTC to correct the alleged erroneous entry on his birth certificate that his parents were
married on December 23, 1983 in Bicol. This substantial correction is allowed under Rule 108 of the
Rules of Court. As we reiterated in Eleosida v. Local Civil Registrar of Quezon City:

It is true in the case at bar that the changes sought to be made by petitioner are not merely clerical or
harmless errors but substantial ones as they would affect the status of the marriage between petitioner
and Carlos Borbon, as well as the legitimacy of their son, Charles Christian. Changes of such nature,
however, are now allowed under Rule 108in accordance with our ruling in Republic vs. Valenciaprovided
that the appropriate procedural requirements are complied with. x x x (Emphasis supplied.)

We also stress that a petition seeking a substantial correction of an entry in a civil register must implead
as parties to the proceedings not only the local civil registrar, as petitioner did in the dismissed petition for
correction of entries, but also all persons who have or claim any interest which would be affected by the
correction. This is required by Section 3, Rule 108 of the Rules of Court:

n Eleosida,11 we cited Section 3, and Sections 4 and 5 of Rule 108 of the Rules of Court, as the
procedural requirements laid down by the Court to make the proceedings under Rule 108 adversary. In
Republic v. Uy,12 we have similarly ruled that when a petition for cancellation or correction of an entry in
the civil register involves substantial and controversial alterations, including those on citizenship,
legitimacy of paternity or filiation, or legitimacy of marriage, a strict compliance with the requirements of
the Rules of Court is mandated. Thus, in his new petition, petitioner should at least implead his father and
mother as parties since the substantial correction he is seeking will also affect them.

In view of the foregoing discussion, it is no longer necessary to dwell on the last issue as petitioner will
have his opportunity to prove his claim that his parents were not married on December 23, 1983 when he
files the new petition for the purpose.

apuzet. al. vs. Del Rosario (Spouses Sanson)Facts:


The Spouses Sanson filed a complaint before the MCTC of Baruanga-Malay, Aklan for forcible entry
with damagesagainst the Tupaz s (Tupaz family and about 120 John Does). The Sansons allege that
they own 1 hectare of land asevidenced by the TCT in their name. That the Tupazes, came in the
morning of April 16, 2006, came in to theproperty armed with bolos and suspected firearms, with
force and intimidation, took possession of the disputedproperty of the Sansons and built a nipa and bamboo
structure.The MCTC ruled in favor of the Sansons, finding that the latter had previous possession of
the disputed land since1993 up to 2006 when the land was taken. The MCTC issued the injunction
prayed for. The petitioners (Tupazes)appealed to the RTC. Upon motion of the Sansons, the RTC
granted the issuance of a preliminary mandatoryinjunction and also issued a writ of demolition
against the Tupazes. The MR filed by the Tupazes was denied.So the Tupazes went to the CA
through rule 42, to have the Injunction and Writ of Demolition reviewed. While inthe CA, the
sheriff of Aklan served the Notice to Vacate and for Demolition to the Tupazes. Thus, the Tupazes
camebefore the SC praying for 3 remedies: Certiorari under Rule 65, the issuance of the writ of
Habeas Data and theissuance of the writ of Amparo.
Issue: May a Writ of Amparo be issued for the Tupazes in this case? NoRuli

Tapuzet. al. vs. Del Rosario (Spouses Sanson)Facts:


The Spouses Sanson filed a complaint before the MCTC of Baruanga-Malay, Aklan for forcible entry
with damagesagainst the Tupaz s (Tupaz family and about 120 John Does). The Sansons allege that
they own 1 hectare of land asevidenced by the TCT in their name. That the Tupazes, came in the
morning of April 16, 2006, came in to theproperty armed with bolos and suspected firearms, with
force and intimidation, took possession of the disputedproperty of the Sansons and built a nipa and bamboo
structure.The MCTC ruled in favor of the Sansons, finding that the latter had previous possession of
the disputed land since1993 up to 2006 when the land was taken. The MCTC issued the injunction
prayed for. The petitioners (Tupazes)appealed to the RTC. Upon motion of the Sansons, the RTC
granted the issuance of a preliminary mandatoryinjunction and also issued a writ of demolition
against the Tupazes. The MR filed by the Tupazes was denied.So the Tupazes went to the CA
through rule 42, to have the Injunction and Writ of Demolition reviewed. While inthe CA, the
sheriff of Aklan served the Notice to Vacate and for Demolition to the Tupazes. Thus, the Tupazes
camebefore the SC praying for 3 remedies: Certiorari under Rule 65, the issuance of the writ of
Habeas Data and theissuance of the writ of Amparo.
Issue: May a Writ of Amparo be issued for the Tupazes in this case? NoRuling:
The writ of amparo was originally conceived as a response to the extraordinary rise in the number
of killings andenforced disappearances, and to the perceived lack of available and effective
remedies to address theseextraordinary concerns.
What it is not, is a writ to protect concerns that are purely property orcommercial. Neither
is it a writ that we shall issue on amorphous and uncertain grounds.
The writ shall issue if the Court is
preliminarily satisfied with the
prima facie
existence of the ultimate facts
determinable from the supporting affidavits that detail the circumstances of how and to what
extent a threat to orviolation of the rights to life, liberty and security of the aggrieved party was
or is being committed.Under these legal and factual situations, we are far from satisfied with the
prima facie
existence of the ultimatefacts that would justify the issuance of a writ of amparo. Rather than
acts of terrorism that pose a continuingthreat to the
persons
of the petitioners, the violent incidents alleged appear to us to be
purely
property-related
and focused on the disputed land
. Thus, if the petitioners wish to seek redress and hold the allegedperpetrators criminally
accountable, the remedy may lie more in the realm of ordinary criminal prosecution ratherthan on the
use of the extraordinary remedy of the writ of amparo.