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University of the Cordilleras

College of Law
Baguio City, Philippines
Midterm Examination
First Semester 2003-2004


Guest Lecturer

Questionnaire Copy No.__________


1. Do not write your name on any page of your exam booklet. Instead,
write the number appearing on this test question on the first page
2. Write your ID number on your questionnaire. Submit your
questionnaire along with your test booklet.
3. Read each question very carefully before answering sequentially,
clearly and concisely. Start each number on a separate page. Your
answer to a subquestion under the same number may be written
continuously on the same page to the following page.
4. Do not repeat the question. Do not restate the problem nor modify
the facts.
5. A mere “yes” or “no” answer will not merit any credit. Ratiocinate.
6. Cheating entails fatal consequences.


From 1960 up to his death in 2001, Rod Skunk had been a

Philippine resident although he was an American from the state of
California which does not recognize the system of legitimes. In 1995
while on vacation in the United States, he executed a will observing
the formalities of the law of India. In his will, he instituted the Nida
Blanca Forever Fans Club, Inc., as heir to his P25M estate, all
located in the Philippines.

Six months after his murder, his executor petitioned the court for
the probate of his will. This is now being opposed by his wife Gina
Parinno and their two children on the grounds that the will did not
comply with the formalities prescribed by law.

1) Rule on the opposition. (5%)

2) Assume that the will was validly executed. How much is the
share of the wife and the children from the estate? (5%)


On 20 June 1990, Abobo Sabaya, the most famous Filipino

macho dancer, executed a will instituting his brother Abobito as heir
to his sugar plantation in Bukidnon. He obliged his brother to preserve
and transmit the property to their sister Abobita.

On 6 August 1990, elements belonging to the Philippine Navy
chased the M/V A. Sabaya as it was cruising the China Sea, relying on
an intelligence report that the same belonged to the head of a
notorious kidnap-for-ransom gang. The naval officers seized the vessel
and rained bullets on its two passengers, Abobo Sabaya and his
friend. Abobo sustained a gunshot in his head. He and his friend fell
into the sea and were swallowed by the raging waves.

The navy conducted a thorough search for their bodies,

especially that of Abobo on the mistaken belief that he was the
notorious criminal. After two weeks, the President of the Philippines
announced on national TV that the body of the notorious Abu Sabaya
surfaced. She was hailed by US President George Bush as an
independent woman leader dedicated to the emasculation of terrorism.
The body turned out to be that of Abu Sabali, Abobo’s friend.
Embarrassed by the snafu, the President fired the source of her

Unable to accept the possibility that Abobo, her favorite brother

may have died, Abobita committed suicide on 1 September 1990.
She was survived by her two children.

1. When did succession to Abobo Sabaya’s estate open? (5%)

2. Assume that this morning, Abobito died survived by his

children. Who succeed to the sugar plantation in Bukidnon?


Jose Pidal executed a three-page notarial will bequeathing unto

all his legitimate children his estate. He deliberately totally omitted his
illegitimate son, Jose Velarde whose illegitimate status the world,
including his legitimate family, Jose himself and even Mikee Velarde,
Jose’s mother’s husband, did not know about. The will was witnessed
by his favorite daughter Glorietta and two others. To Glorietta, he gave
the entire free portion.

The attestation clause did not state the number of pages used,
although the acknowledgment stated that “the will consists of three
pages excluding the page on which this acknowledgment is written.”

After Jose Pidal’s death, Mrs. Velarde informed her son that his
biological father was Pidal. During the probate of Pidal’s will, Jose
Velarde filed his opposition alleging the following: a) One of the three
witnesses to the will is an heir. This being the case, it is as if there
were only two witnesses in violation of the requirement of the law; b)
He was preterited; and c) The attestation clause did not state the
number of pages used in the will.

1. Is the first ground for opposition valid? (5)

2. May an illegitimate child be preterited? (5%)
3. Assuming that Jose Velarde was preterited, may he raise his
preterition as an issue in the probate proceeding? (5)
4. Rule on the third ground for the opposition. (5)


Actress Kristeta Tsonggo Aquino emerged from oblivion and

pervaded the public consciousness when she announced on national
television that her favorite hero had always been Ninoy Aquino for his
eternal words, “The Filipino is worth dying for.” Lately, her popularity
became a foregone conclusion when she told Boy Abundat in her
interview in the TV show “Stars Talk and Text “ that her favorite motto
now is “The Filipino married man is worth dying for,” while beaming at
a man, also a show guest and a dead ringer for Parañaque Mayor
Joey Marquez.

On the day of Kristeta’s interview in “Stars Talk and Text,” her

very religious aunt Corazon was watching. Corazon’s sensibilities
were so scandalized that for two days she prayed to all the saints for
spiritual guidance. Afterwards, she brought out her two holographic
wills intending to revoke them insofar as they favored Kristeta. The
first will, with only one copy, executed on August 21, 1999 instituted
Kristeta and Alma Gurangna, another niece, as sole heirs to a 150
hectare-lot in San Fernando, La Union. The second will, also with only
one copy was executed on August 21, 2000 instituted Kristeta as
sole heir to a beach house in Bauang, La Union.

Corazon instructed her secretary to put a line across the name

of Kristeta in the first will and over it, write the name of Philip
Salvavida, a nephew. The secretary complied. Corazon authenticated
both the cancellation and the insertion of Philip’s name with her full

Afterwards, she ordered her secretary to burn the second will.

The secretary complied. However, she mistook the first will for the
second and thus burned the first will.

Yesterday, Corazon died of ovarian cancer, after living 60

summers of bliss as a single, never-been-attached woman.

1. Who will inherit under the first holographic will? (5%)

2. Was the second will revoked? (5%)


On 11 May 2001, Boy “Termite” Baygon executed a will

instituting his two legitimate children Gloria Baygon Makapalbagal
and Teofisto Gringona Baygon as his heirs to his P2M estate. On
12 June 2002, Teofisto donated his share from his father’s estate to
the Beggars Cannot Be Free (BCF) Foundation, a non-
government organization opposed to US intervention in Philippine
affairs. BCF accepted the donation in the same deed.

On 4 July 2002, Teofisto delivered a speech in a mass action

against the joint US-Philippine military exercises in the Philippines.
Addressing a high official of the Philippines, he said, “Something is
wrong with the left and right parts of your brain. The left has nothing
right in it and the right has nothing left in it.” After his speech, he was

shot dead by an unidentified assailant. He was survived by his wife
and two children.

Boy “Termite” Baygon was depressed by the death of his

more beloved child that he died of a broken heart.

1. Assuming that the Deed of Donation executed by Teofisto

complied with all the formal requirements under the law, did it
have the effect of transferring his share under his father’s will
to BCF? (5%)

2. Assume that Teofisto did not execute the Deed of Donation.

Distribute the estate of Boy Baygon. (5%)


When he executed his last will and testament on 11 July 2001,

Gringo Triliones was laboring under a state of insanity. This insanity
was triggered by his uncontainable depression over what he thought
to be unparalleled escalating corruption in the military. His estate
consisted of a house with a fair market value of P500M which he
inherited from his maternal grandfather. He named his mother in his
will as his sole heir even if he had one child, Millones and a grandchild,
Apo, who was the only child of his predeceased son Billones.

During his lucid interval, Triliones executed a codicil which

stated, “I hereby republish my will executed on 12 July 2001 and
adopt all the contents thereof.” In his codicil, he failed to reproduce the
testamentary dispositions of the 2001 will.

After examining the will and the codicil, Atty. Josef Strada
informed Triliones, his client, that the 12 July 2001 will was not validly
republished as the codicil failed to reproduce the testamentary
dispositions thereof.

1 1. Is Atty. Strada correct? (5%)

2 2. Assume that the codicil validly reproduced the 2001 will.

Distribute his state . (5) Explain why you believe that that particular
heir is entitled to that share. (5)
3 -VII-

On 25 June 1999, Diego better known as “Pambansang Bading”

executed a will instituting his best friend Danilo Pinafeel as his sole
heir. When the Arroyo administration supported the US-led war
against Iraq, Diego, a staunch nationalist, convened a multisectoral
alliance called Gloria Magresign! Association (GMA) calling for the
ouster of Gloria Arroyo. For his part, Pinafeel, a graduate of the
school Payag Maski Ayaw (PMA) which is a known supporter of the
status quo, put up a group called George Bush, Aid Gloria!
Association (GAGA) to counter the efforts of GMA. Because of their
political differences, the once inseparable friends had a falling out. On
20 August 2002, Diego made another will instituting actor Troy
Montero as his sole heir because of the latter’s anti-US imperialism

posture. No reference to the first will was made. Three weeks after,
Diego invited Troy to a rally but the latter declined explaining that he
rethought his anti-US position and became an active member of
GAGA. A disillusioned Diego executed a third will expressly revoking
the second will. What is the status of the first will? (5%)


In 1999, Sherap Estrada, wrote entirely in his hand the

following letter to his wife, Louise Ejercito:

My everdearest Louise,

This may come as a total surprise to you. I found my good

sense in the four corners of my Muntinlupa cell. My having been
charged with plunder turned out to be blessing in disguise. After
doing a lot of introspection, I realized that I have been a bad
husband all these years. Yet, you never wavered in your love for
me. You publicly defended me even if the media portrayed you
as a pitiful woman who internalized her oppression. The other
women – Guia, Joy, Rowena, Laarni, even Nora Amor- fled when
it was risky to stick it out with me. Because of your sterling
demeanor as my wife, I have come to fully comprehend the
import of “for better, for worse” – which I perfunctorily recited
before you nineteen years ago on our wedding day. I’ve lost
count of the number of times I looked back to that day as the
day I mortgaged my freedom. Come to think of it – that was the
day I was blessed with a gem I didn’t and could never deserve –

My intuition and even my lawyer Gaymund Fortune –

despite his public display of bravado- tell me that the Supreme
Court will most likely affirm my death sentence. I know I can
never make up for lost time nor can I ever deserve your
forgiveness. But please be as generous to me as you have
always been by letting me have this chance to do some good
thing for you before time runs out on me.

According to my accountant, Yolly Rica-Forte, my net

worth is P20B, exclusive of your share from our conjugal
partnership. I want you to have half of mine. The other half will
be divided according to the provisions of the Civil Code by you,
our children and my children by the other women. However, it
is my desire that Junggoy, my son by Rowena will not receive
any share because his mother had been harassing you no end
and she publicly dumped me for Atong Ong-ong. (Remember
the guy who used to deliver jueteng money at our door when I
was Mayor of Sangwang? That was Atong.) You will be the
administrator of my estate. When I leave this world, my dearest,
sing no sad songs for me. Bury me beside the spot where you
desire to be buried, if this is not too much to ask. At least in
death, you can have me all to yourself.

I made a previous will which is now in the custody of Atty.

Fortune. Tell him that this letter supercedes the will.

This may be belated but I want you to know that in my
heart, I have always loved you.

Your now-faithful husband,

Baguio Flower Fest Month 1999

Sherap Estrada was subsequently executed by lethal

injection for plunder. After three months, Louise petitioned the
court for probate of the document. This was opposed by Junggoy
who claimed that the document is a letter, not a will.

1. Is Junggoy correct? (5%)

2. Answer the following questions on the assumption that
the letter is a will.
a. Is it validly dated? (2.5%)
b. Grant that after the execution of the letter, Angtoño
Sanchez, a cell mate of Sherap erased the word
Amor therein and inserted Aunor with the consent of
Sherap who even authenticated the insertion.
i) Is the insertion valid? (2.5%)
ii) What is the status of the will?(2.5%)
c. Grant that it was Sherap who made the insertion
using a typewriter, which insertion he authenticated
with his thumbmark.
i)Is the insertion valid? (2.5%)
ii) How about the will? (2.5%)
d. Is there a ground to declare the will invalid? (5%)

e. Grant that Louise Estrada lost the letter. Can she

establish the contents and due execution thereof by
extrinsic or parole evidence? (5%)

1. What is a joint will? Is it valid in the Philippines? (2.5%)

2. If the heirs are all in agreement to divide the estate of the

testator in accordance with his will, may they do away with
the probate thereof? (2.5%)

The testator is a legitimate child. Distribute his estate worth P1M

if his heirs are as follows:

1. LC, LC, LC, LC, SS, IC, IC, IC, IC, IC, IC, IC
2. SS, IC, IC