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TEODORO ACAP V.

CA, EDY DE LOS REYES


December 7, 1995 | Padilla, J.
Different Modes of Acquiring Ownership
AKGL

DOCTRINE: Ownership and real rights are acquired only pursuant to a legal mode or process. While title is the
juridical justification, mode is the actual process of acquisition or transfer of ownership over a thing in question.

FACTS:
 Sps. Santiago Vasquez and Lorenza Oruma owned a parcel of land in Hinigaran, Negros Occidental,
as evidenced by OCT 3-12179. When the Sps. Vasquez died, their son Felixberto inherited the lot. In
1975, Felixberto executed a notarized document (i.e., Declaration of Heirship and Deed of Absolute
Sale) in favor of Cosme Pido.
 Since 1960, Teodoro Acap had been the tenant of the portion of the property. Teodoro continued to be
the registered tenant when ownership was transferred by Felixberto to Cosme.
 The controversy began when Cosme died intestate. It was alleged that his surviving heirs executed a
notarized document (i.e., Declaration of Heirship and Waiver of Rights). Based on the document,
Cosme’s wife Laurenciana and their children (Ely, Ervin, Elmer and Elechor) “do hereby waive,
quitclaim all our rights, interests and participation over the said parcel of land in favor of Edy De los
Reyes.”
 Note that at the time of Cosme’s death, title to the property continued to be registered in the name of
Sps. Vasquez. But, upon obtaining the document, Edy filed a notice of adverse claim against the OCT
before the Registry of Property.
 Edy informed Teodoro that the former had become the new owner and that the lease rentals should be
paid. Edy also alleged that they entered into an oral lease contract, whereby Teodoro will pay him 10
cavans of palay per annum as rent.
 In 1982, Teodoro paid the said cavans of palay, but Teodoro refused to honor the ownership of Edy
starting 1983. Teodoro stated that Laurenciana instructed him topay the accumulated rentals upon her
demand or return from abroad.
 [Lower Court] Rendered judgment in favor of Edy and ordered Teodoro to deliver possession. Evidence
had established that the land was “sold” by the heirs of Cosme to Edy.
 [CA] Affirmed the judgment. Brushed aside Teodoro’s argument that the Declaration of Heirship and
Waiver of rights was excluded (as evidence) by the lower court. Teodoro also had actual knowledge of
the subject sale and actually paid rent to Edy.
 [Teodoro’s Argument before SC] The Declaration of Heirship and Waiver of Rights is not one of the
recognized modes of acquiring ownership under Art. 712, NCC. Neither can it be considered as a deed
of sale, because there was no consideration stated in the contract.

ISSUE: W/N there was a valid transfer of ownership over the subject property from the heirs Cosme Pido to
Edy De los Reyes? NONE!

RULING:
 An asserted right or claim to ownership or a real right over a thing arising from a juridical act, however
justified, is not per se sufficient to give rise to ownership over the res. Hence, ownership and real rights
are acquired only pursuant to a legal mode or process. While title is the juridical justification, mode
is the actual process of acquisition or transfer of ownership over a thing in question.
 Under Article 712 of the Civil Code, the modes of acquiring ownership are generally classified into two
(2) classes, namely, the original mode (i.e., through occupation, acquisitive prescription, law or
intellectual creation) and the derivative mode (i.e., through succession mortis causa or tradition as a
result of certain contracts, such as sale, barter, donation, assignment or mutuum).
1. The Deed of Heirship is NOT the same with a contract of sale.
TEODORO ACAP V. CA, EDY DE LOS REYES
 In the instant case, the trial court was obviously confused as to the nature and effect of the Declaration
of Heirship and Waiver of Rights, equating the same with a contract (deed) of sale1. a declaration of
heirship and waiver of rights operates as a public instrument when filed with the Registry of Deeds
whereby the intestate heirs adjudicate and divide the estate left by the decedent among themselves as
they see fit.

2. A waiver of hereditary rights is ALSO NOT the same with a contract of sale of hereditary rights.
 There is a marked difference between a sale of hereditary rights and a waiver of hereditary rights. The
first presumes the existence of a contract or deed of sale between the parties. The second is,
technically speaking, a mode of extinction of ownership where there is an abdication or intentional
relinquishment of a known right with knowledge of its existence and intention to relinquish it in favor of
other persons who are co-heirs in the succession.

3. Notice of adverse claim is NOT a mode of acquiring ownership.


 The document deed of heirship and waiver of rights was neither registered with the Registry of Deeds
nor identified by the heirs of Cosme Pido. There is no showing that Edy had the same document
attached to or made part of the record.
 What the trial court admitted was Annex "E", a notice of adverse claim filed with the Registry of Deeds
which contained the Declaration of Heirship with Waiver of rights and was annotated at the back of the
Original Certificate of Title to the land in question.
 A notice of adverse claim, by its nature, does not however prove private respondent's ownership over
the tenanted lot. The validity of which is yet to be established in court at some future date
 while the existence of said adverse claim was duly proven, there is no evidence whatsoever that a deed
of sale was executed between Cosme Pido's heirs and Edy.
 Teodoro may have, in good faith, assumed such statement of Edy to be true and may have in fact
delivered 10 cavans of palay as annual rental for 1982. it is clear that Teodoro had misgivings over
Edy’s claim of ownership over the said land because in the October 1983 MAR conference,
Laurenciana categorically denied all of Edy’s allegations.
 In fact, Teodoro even secured a certificate from the MAR dated 9 May 1988 to the effect that he
continued to be the registered tenant of Cosme Pido and not of Edy.

DISPOSITION: WHEREFORE, premises considered, the Court hereby GRANTS the petition and the decision
of the Court of Appeals dated 1 May 1994 which affirmed the decision of the RTC of Himamaylan, Negros
Occidental dated 20 August 1991 is hereby SET ASIDE.

1In a Contract of Sale, one of the contracting parties obligates himself to transfer the ownership of and to deliver a determinate thing, and the other party to pay a
price certain in money or its equivalent.