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UNIVERSITY OF THE VISAYAS

GULLAS LAW SCHOOL


Syllabus Property
(With Notes and Citations)

(Second Year - First Semester)


Credit Units: 4 credit units (4hrs. / week)
Prepared by: DEAN TEODORO A. ALMASE
I.

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
Review and general integration of the principles in Civil Law covering:
Book II Property Except (Title IV Some Special Properties);
Book III Different Modes of Acquiring Ownership (Title I Occupation); and
(Title III Donation); (Title V Prescription)
Excluded from Book III :
(Title II Intellectual Creation) and (Title IV Succession)
R.A. 4726
P.D. 957

II.

The Condominium Act


The Subdivision and Condominium Buyers Protective Decree

COURSE OBJECTIVES:
The course aims to:
1.
2.
3.

III.

ORIENTATION:
A.
B.
C.
D.

IV.

provide the students with in-depth knowledge and mastery of the principles
covered;
enable students to apply these principles in case studies;
prepare the Second Year law students for Civil Law Review I and II, the Bar
Examination, and eventually in the practice of law.

Explanation of Course Description and Course Objective


Requirements
Methods of Teaching
Evaluation and Grading System

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE COURSE:


A.
B.
C.

Attendance
Graded Recitations
Case Studies

2
D.

Written Examinations
There will be four (4) written examinations, namely: Preliminary Examinations,
Midterm Examinations, Semi-Finals and the Final Examinations.
Each of the examinations will be composed of Multiple Choice Questions
(MCQs) (60%) paired with Problem Solving (Essay Type) Trial
Memorandum/Decision/Legal Opinion (40%).
Special Examinations may be given on a case-to-case basis, depending upon the
discretion of the professor.
Students must present their respective permits before they are allowed to take any
examination.

V.

TEACHING STRATEGIES:
A.
B.

VI.

Participative Lecture Discussions


Analysis of Case Studies

LECTURE AND EVALUATION:

For Preliminary Examinations: .


(4 weeks = 16 lecture hours)
Possible Exam Date: .
BOOK II
PROPERTY, OWNERSHIP AND ITS
MODIFICATIONS (New Civil Code, Book II )
Arts. 414 -711
I.

Classification of Property (Title I) Arts. 414-426


A.

Characteristics
Characteristics of Property:
o Utility capacity to satisfy human wants;
o Individuality that is not merely a part of the whole; it is a separate and
autonomous existence;
o Susceptibility of being appropriated

B.

Classification Arts. 415-418


1.

By Object
a)
Real or immovable (Chapter 1) Art. 415
Academic Classification of Real Property:
o Real property by nature land
o Real property by incorporation building, plants
o Real property by destination machineries placed by the
owner of the land/tenement which tend directly to meet the
needs of the industry carried on therein by the owner of the
tenement
o Real property by analogy right of usufruct or contracts of
public works

3
o
Case Studies:
Associated Insurance & Surety Co Inc vs. Iya (103 Phil 972)
Re: Article 415(1) NCC It is obvious that the inclusion of the building, separate and
distinct from the land in the enumeration of what may constitute real properties (Art. 415 NCC)
could only mean one thing that a building is an immovable property irrespective of whether or
not said structure and the land on which it is adhered to belong to the same person. A building
cannot be divested of its character of a realty by the fact that the land on which it is built belongs
to another.
Thus, an earlier chattel mortgage on the building and its subsequent registration as a
chattel mortgage in the Chattel Mortgage Registry, has no effect and is a futile act, and the
buyer in the foreclosure sale thereof acquires no right against a later real estate mortgagee, in
good faith, on the building.
Davao Saw Mill Co vs. Castillo (61 Phil 709)
Machinery, instruments, implements, though movable by their nature, becomes
immobilized or immovable if (1) placed by the owner of the land or tenement on the land or
tenement, (2) an industry must be carried on in the tenement; (3) it must be intended for such
industry or work (4) it must tend directly to meet the needs of such industry or works. Thus, if the
industry carried on the tenement or piece of land is by a tenant or lessee, not by owner of the
land, the machinery retains its nature as movable property.
b)

Personal or Movable (Chapter 2) Arts. 416-417

Test to Determine Whether Property Is Movable:


o Whether the property can be carried from place to place;
o Whether the change in location can be effected without injury to the
immovable to which the object may be attached;
o Whether the object is not mentioned in any of the ten paragraphs in
Art. 415, NCC.
Note: Mortgage on land if registered, is immovable; if not registered,
it is movable, but still binding on the parties.
(Movable Property)
o

By Nature
Consumable/non-consumable
By Intention of the Parties

o
Fungible/non-fungible
2.

By Owner (Chapter 3) Arts. 419-425


Kinds of Property According to Ownership:
o
o
o

Res nullius belonging to nobody


Res communes belong to all
Res alicujus belonging to someone

State (Regalian Doctrine) vs. Private Ownership By The State and


Local Govt Units (LGU), Private Persons
Individually Or Collectively
a.

The State
1)
2)

b.

c.

Of public dominion (Art. 420)


Patrimonial Property (Arts. 421-422)

Provinces/Cities/Municipalities Other Local Government Units


LGUs(Arts. 423-424)
1)
Public Use
2)
Patrimonial Property
Private Persons (Individually Or Collectively) (Art. 425)

Case Studies:
Mactan-Cebu Int. Airport Authority vs. Hrs. of Sero (551 SCRA 633)
Re: Article 435 NCC When land has been acquired by the Government for public use
by the exercise of eminent domain, in fee simple and unconditionally, the former owner has no
right to the land or to repurchase the same even if the public use for which the Government
acquired the land may be abandoned or the land is devoted to a different use.
Republic vs. CA (299 SCRA 199)
The State which owns all waters/lands of the public domain, through R.A. 1899 granted
local autonomy to local governments to reclaim only foreshore lands as under P.D. No. 3.
Laurel vs. Garcia (187 SCRA 797)
Under Art. 420, par. 2, the Roppongi lot, located in Tokyo, Japan, given to the
Philippines, pursuant to the Reparations Agreement, is intended for public service and therefore
of public dominion. The President, without concurrence of Congress, cannot dispose said lot.
II.

Ownership (Title II) Arts. 427-483


A.

Ownership in General (Chapter 1) Arts. 427-439


Definition: A relation in private law by virtue of which a thing belonging to one
person is completely subjected to his will in everything not
prohibited by law and the concurrent rights of others (Ruggiero cited
by Arturo Tolentino)
The Traditional Attributes Or Elements Of Ownership (Art. 428):
o

The right to enjoy which includes :


- Jus utendi or the right to use
- Jus possidendi or the right to possess
- Jus fruendi or the right to the fruits
- Jus abutendi or the right to consume

The or the right to dispose, to alienate, encumber or transform


- Jus disponendi

5
o
1.

The right to recover the thing from the holder or possessor


- Jus vindicandi
Bundle of Rights
a.

Jus utendi, possidendi, fruendi, abutendi, vindicandi, disponendi


(1) Actions to recover ownership and possession of real
property
(a)
Distinctions between accion reinvindicatoria,
accion publiciana, accion interdictal
(b)
Distinction between forcible entry and unlawful
detainer
(2)
Actions for recovery of possession of moveable property
(3)
Requisites for recovery of property proof of right;
identity; reliance on strength of own evidence not weakness
of defendants claim

4. Distinction between real and personal rights


a.

Real Right (Rights of Ownership and Possession) the power belonging


to a person over a specific thing, without a passive subject individually
determined against whom such a right may be personally exercised; it
gives a person a direct and immediate juridical power over a thing, which
can be exercised not only against a determinate person, but against the
whole world (Sanchez Roman cited by Arturo Tolentino)

b.

Personal Right the power belonging to one person to demand of another


person, as a definite passive subject, the fulfillment of the prestation to
give, to do or not to do.
Thus, if A sold his car to B and A refused to deliver the car to B,
then B has a personal right to demand from A, as a definite passive
person, the delivery and the transfer of ownership of the car to B.
And, after the ownership of the car has been transferred to B by
the delivery thereof, B has then acquired ownership of the car, which
gives B a real right to the car which B can exercise and enforce
against the whole world.

5. Modes of acquiring ownership


a.
6. Limitations
a.
b.

original, derivative
General limitations taxation, eminent domain, police power
Specific Limitations imposed by law, sic utere tuo, nuisance, stat
of necessity, easements voluntarily imposed by owner: servitudes,
mortgages imposed by contract
Limitations of Ownership:
o General limitations for the benefit of the State, like the power
of eminent domain, police power and taxation;
o Specific limitations imposed by law, like servitude;
o Limitations imposed by the party transmitting property either
by contract or by last will;
o Inherent limitations arising from conflicts with similar rights,
like those caused by contiguity of property;

5.

Hidden Treasure Arts. 438-439


Definition: Hidden and unknown deposit of money, jewelry, or other
precious objects, the lawful ownership of which does not
appear
a.

General Rule: belongs to owner of land, building or


other property where found
If found by chance, on the property of another or State or any of its
subdivision, to finder if he is not a trespasser and to the owner
of the land/tenement where it is found.

b.

B.

Right Of Accession-(Chapter 2) Arts. 440-475


Definition: the right pertaining to the owner of a thing over everything that is
produced thereby (accession discreta), or which is incorporated or
attached thereto (accession continua), either naturally (accession
natural) or artificially (accession industrial)
Kinds of Accession:
1)

Accession discreta (natural,industrial and civil fruits) right pertaining to


the owner of a thing over everything which is produced thereby:

Natural fruits spontaneous products of the soil and the young and other
products of animals
Industrial fruits produced by lands of any kind through cultivation or
labor
Civil fruits rents of buildings, price of leases and other property, amount
of perpetual or life annuities or other similar income
Under Art. 448 (Builder in Good Faith)
The landowner cannot refuse to exercise his option
(appropriate improvements after payment of indemnity or to require
sower to pay price of land). In the event the landowner elects to
appropriate the improvements, pending payment of indemnity:
(i)
(ii)
(iii)

2)

The landowner is entitled to the natural, civil and industrial


fruits, because the builder, planter and sower is no longer in
good faith;
On the other hand, the builder, planter and sower, is entitled to
retain the land/improvements pending payment of
indemnification as security;
In the meantime, the builder, planter or sower cannot be
compelled to pay rentals

Accession continua right pertaining to the owner of a thing over


everything incorporated or attached thereto, either naturally or artificially

Accession industrial (building, planting, sowing)


Accession natural (alluvion, avulsion, change in river
bed, formation of islands)

7
Accretion process where soil is deposited by the effects of the
current of waters
Alluvium is the soil deposited
Definitions:
a.
Riparian Owner owner of lands adjoining banks or river or
stream;
b.
Littoral Owner owner of lands adjoining or bordering on the sea,
lake or tidal waters
The riparian owner owns the accretion (alluvium) received from the
effects of the current of the waters of the river (Art. 457); however, the
State, not the littoral owner, owns the accretion (alluvium) received from
the effects of the current of the sea/tidal waters (Art. 420)
1.

What Is Produced By Property/Fruits (Section 1) Arts. 441444


With Respect to Immovable Property (Section 2) Arts. 445465

2.
a)
b)
c)
d)
e)
f)

Builder, planter, sower on land of another in concept of owner


(i)
Builder, planter, sower in good faith Arts. 448-456
(ii)
Builder, planter, sower in bad faith Arts. 449-450
Usufructuary, Art. 579
Owners of Banks of Rivers (Accretion) Art.457
Owners of River Beds Which Are Abandoned (Art. 461)
Owners of Lands Affected By Change In Course of River ( 462-3)
Owners of Islands Formed On Seas/Navigable Rivers (Art. 464)
and Islands Formed On Non-Navigable Rivers (Art. 465)

Case Studies
On Art. 448:
San Diego vs. Montesa (6 SCRA 207)
Normally, of course, the landowner has the option to either appropriate the improvement
or to sell the land to the possessor. This option is no longer open to the respondent landowners
because the decision in the former suit limits them to the first alternative by requiring the
petitioners to vacate the land (and surrender the improvements) upon payment of P3,500.00.
Evidently, the Courts of First Instance and of Appeals opined that the respondents' suit to
recover the property was an exercise of their right to choose to appropriate the improvements
and pay the indemnity fixed by law.
Ballatan vs. CA (304 SCRA 34)
Payment by the builder/sower/planter of the lot should be based on prevailing market
value at the time of payment if the purchase by the landowner of a portion of the building will
render the building useless.
Tuatis vs. Escol (604 SCRA 471)
The choice belongs to the owner of the land in accord with the principle of accession; the
landowners choice is preclusive and he cannot refuse to exercise either option and compel
instead the owner of the building to remove it from the land.
Grana vs. Court of Appeals

Under Art. 448, if the builder unknowingly builds a portion of the house on the adjacent
land, the equitable solution is: (1) for the landowner to sell the portion of land occupied by the
house; or (2) to enter into a contract of lease for that portion of land occupied by the house
Depra vs. Dumlao (135 SCRA 475)
Re: Art. 448: Where the builder, planter or sower has acted in good faith, it becomes
necessary to protect the owner of the improvements without causing injustice to the owner of the
land. In view of the impracticability of creating a forced co-ownership, the law has provided a
just solution by giving the owner of the land the option to acquire the improvements after
payment of proper indemnity, or to oblige the builder or planter to pay for the land and for the
sower the proper rent. The owner of the land has the option because his right is older and
because by the principle of accession, he is entitled to the ownership of the accessory.
Filipinas Colleges Inc. vs. Timbang (106 Phil. 247)
Re: Article 448 with cross-reference to Article 546, NCC 2242 (Preference of Credits)
Where the builder in good faith fails to pay value of the land upon demand by owner thereof, the
parties may resort to the following remedies: (1) assume the relation of lessor and lessee
(Miranda vs. Fadullon, 51 Off. Gaz. 6226); (2) if not, the owner of the land may have the
improvement removed (Ignacio vs. Hilario, 76 Phil. 605); (3) the land and the improvement may
be sold at public auction, applying proceeds first to the value of the land and the excess, if any,
for the value of the improvement (Bernardo vs. Bataclan, 66 Phil. 598).
This last remedy may be disadvantageous to owner of land, especially if there are claims
of unpaid suppliers of materials and labor, in the construction of the building which are not mere
preferred claims but liens on the improvement (building) under Article 2242, NCC on preference
of credits.
Spouses Del Campo vs. Abesia (160 SCRA 379)
Re: Articles 448, 546 and 548, NCC A co-owner built in good faith a house on a land
owned in common, and later, upon partition of the land, the house encroached by 5 square
meters on the land adjudicated to the other co-owner.
The owner of land must indemnify owner of house for the portion thereof that encroached
on his land, if he elects to do so; otherwise, owner of house shall pay value of land encroached
unless value of land exceeds value of portion of house; then, last remedy is for owner of house
to pay reasonable rental of the 5 square meters encroached upon, terms thereof to be fixed by
court in case of disagreement.
Technogas Phil. Manufacturing vs. CA (268 SCRA 5)
Re: Article 448 NCC The builder on a titled parcel of land, with technical description
of the land covered thereby, whose construction encroached on the adjacent land is still
considered a builder in good faith under Article 448, NCC. The reason being that unless one is
versed in the science of surveying, no one can determine the precise extent or location of his
property by merely examining the technical description of the land as appearing in his paper
title. (Co Tao vs. Chico, 83 Phil. 543).
The Technogas ruling modified the previous ruling (J.M. Tuason vs. Vda. De Lumanlan,
23 SCRA 230) that a builder is in bad faith if he erroneously builds on the adjoining land that is
covered by a torrens title there being a presumptive knowledge of the Torrens title, the area and
the extent of the boundary as shown in the technical description of the land in the title.

9
Siain Enterprises Inc. vs. FF Cruz & Co. Inc. (500 SCRA 417)
Paragraph 32 of Lands Administrative Order No. 7-1 dated April 30, 1936 provides:
32.
Preference of Littoral Owner. The owner of the property adjoining foreshore
lands or lands covered with water bordering upon shores or banks of navigable lakes or rivers,
shall be given preference to apply for such lands adjoining his property as may not be needed for
the public service, subject to the laws and regulations governing lands of this nature, provided
that he applies therefore within sixty (60) days from the date he receives a communication from
the Director of Lands advising him of his preferential right.
Heirs of E. Navarro vs. IAC (268 SCRA 74)
Re: Article 457 NCC and Article 4, Spanish Law of Waters Accretion as a mode of
acquiring property under Article 457 NCC requires (1) that accumulation of soil or sediment be
gradual and imperceptible, (2) that it be the result of the action of the waters of the river, (3) that
the land where the accretion takes place is adjacent to the bank of the river. Accretion is the
process whereby soil is deposited while alluvium is the soil deposited on the estate fronting the
river bank; the owner of such estate is called the riparian owner. Littoral owners are owners of
lands bordering on the sea or lake or tidal waters. The alluvium deposited on lands of littoral
owners is owned by the State pursuant to Article 4 of the Spanish Law of Waters. (see also Art.
420)
Ignacio vs. Dir. Of Lands (108 Phil 335)
Neither Art. 457 of the Civil Code nor the Spanish Law Of Waters is applicable to
accretion on a sea bank. It belongs to the public domain under Art. 420 of the Civil Code.
3.

With Respect to Movables (Section 3) Arts. 466-457


1)

Adjunction/Conjunction Arts. 466 - 471


whenever two movable things belonging to different
persons are united in such a way they cannot be separated
without injury, thereby forming a single unit; however
unlike in commixture/confusion, in adjunction, each
component preserves its nature.

2)

Commixture mixture of solid things


Confusion mixture of liquid things Arts. 472 - 473

3)

Specification when a person imparts a new form to


materials belonging to another Art. 474

Case Study:
Siari Valley Estate Inc vs. Lucasan (97 Phil 987)
Re: Article 473 NCC (Commingling in bad faith) Where defendant Lucasan stole and
commingled cattle of plaintiff with defendants cattle at the adjoining ranch, the defendant lose
his share of his own cattle which were commingled in bad faith with plaintiffs cattle.
c.
4.

Rules for determining the principal and accessory

General Rules:
Partus Sequitur Ventrem offspring belongs to the owner of the female

10
Definition of good faith (for purposes of possession) Art. 526
Good faith (for purposes of prescription) Art. 1127
Definition of bad faith of landowner Art. 453
Bad faith of possessor Art. 526, par. 2
C.

Quieting of title to/interest in and removal/prevention of cloud over title


to/interest in real property (Chapter 3) Arts. 476 481
1.

Requirement
An action for reformation of instrument, to quiet title to real property or
remove clouds therefrom, under Art. 476 or to consolidate ownership in a
pacto de retro sale under Art. 1607 of the Civil Code, may be brought
under Rule 63 of the Rules of Court.

2.
3.

Distinction between quieting title and removing/preventing a


cloud
Prescription/non-prescription of action
In an action to quiet title,
1. If the plaintiff is in possession, the period does
not prescribe, and the only right is to remove or
prevent cloud;
2. If plaintiff is not possession, the period
prescribes;
and
in
addition
to
removal/prevention of cloud, plaintiff may bring
ordinary
actions
for
recovery
of
possession/ownership

Case Studies:
Hrs. of Clemente Ermac vs. Hrs. of Vicente Ermac (403 SCRA 291)
The respondents, who are the owners of a parcel of land, entrusted to Clemente to secure
title to the land. However, Clemente instead, secured torrens title in his name alone. Clemente
was deemed to hold his certificate of title in trust for the respondents, the real owner of the land.
Notwithstanding the lapse of one year wherein the title of Clemente becomes incontrovertible
under Section 2, P.D. 1519, respondents may still recover title to the land, and
prescription/laches will not apply as respondents are in actual possession of land.
Vda de Aviles vs. CA (264 SCRA 473)
An action to quiet title or remove cloud may not be brought for the purpose of settling a
boundary dispute. The proper remedy is ejectment.
III.

Co-Ownership (Title III) Arts. 484-501


Also R.A. 4726 (The Condominium Act)
Definition:

It is a form of a trust and every co-owner is a trustee for the others


(Sotto vs. Teves )

The right of common dominion which two or more persons have in the spiritual
part of a thing, not physically or materially divided (Sanchez Roman)
Requisites of Co-Ownership:

11

1. Plurality of subjects;
2. Unity of object (material indivision); and
3. Recognition of the ideal or intellectual shares of the co-owners which determine their
rights and obligations
A.

B.

Characteristics of Co-ownership
1.
There must be more than one owner;
2.
There must be one physical whole divided into ideal (undivided shares);
3.
Each ideal share is definite in amount but is not physically segregated
from the rest;
4.
As to the physical whole, each co-owner must respect each other in the
common use, enjoyment and preservation of the physical whole;
5.
As to the ideal share, each co-owner has almost absolute control over the
same;
6.
It is not a juridical person;
7.
A co-owner is a trustee for the other co-owners
Condominium
Definition: It is an interest in real property consisting of a separate interest in a
unit in a residential industrial or commercial building and an
undivided interest in common, directly or indirectly, in the land on
which it is located, and in the common area of the building (R.A.
4726)
1.

2
3.
4.

Concept of condominium (R.A. 4726)


(1)
Condominium corporation
(2)
Interest in real property
(3)
Concept of common areas, amendment
(4)
Documents to consider (master deed, declaration of restrictions,
articles and by-laws of the condominium corporation or the
association where applicable
Rights and obligations of condominium owner
(1)
Contributions/Dues
(2)
PD 957 and RA 6552
Grounds for partition of common areas, or dissolution of the condominium
Limitations on conveyance of condominium units:
Where the common areas in the condominium project are held by owners
of separate units as co-owners thereof, no condominium unit shall be
transferred except to Filipino citizens or corporation with 60% Filipino
ownership; where common areas are held by the condominium
corporation, no transfer shall be valid if the concomitant transfer of the
appurtenant membership or stock holding in the corporation will cause
alien ownership or intrest in such corporation to exceed the limits imposed
by existing laws. (Sec. 5 of R.A. 4726)

Case Study:
Hulst vs. PR Builders Inc. (566 SCRA 33)
Foreigners can acquire condominium unit(s) and share(s) in condominium corporation
up to not more than 40% of the total and outstanding stock of a Filipino-owned corporation.
Ownership of the land is legally separated from the unit itself. The land is owned by a
condominium corporation, which, under the Constitution, the capital stock must be at least 60%

12
owned by Filipino citizens, to own lands in the Philippines; and the unit owner is simply a
member of this condominium corporation.

D.

Source of co-ownership
Rights of Co-owners
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

Distinction between right to property owned in common (Arts. 486 and


487, CC) and full ownership over his/her ideal share (Art. 493, 494, etc.
CC)
Right to oppose acts of alteration (Art. 491, CC)
Right to partition (Art. 494, CC)
Right to contributions for expenses (necessary expenses, taxes) (Art. 488,
CC)
Waiver
Right to redemption of co-owners share (Arts. 1620 and 1623, CC)

Acts of Administration - refer to the enjoyment and exploitation of the thing


which does not affect its form or substance and which are transitory. This
requires consent of the majority of the co-owners.
Lease of personal property is an act of administration which needs
consent of the majority of the co-owners. Lease of real property: (a) not
registered and not exceeding one year is an act of administration which
needs consent of majority of the co-owners; (b) registered or exceeds one
year, is an act of alteration which needs the consent of all the co-owners.
Acts of Alteration refer to the change of substance or form or purposes intended
of the thing, is permanent in nature. This requires the consent of all co-owners.
Act of Preservation may be made by will of one of the co-owners.
E.

Termination/extinguishment
1.
Effect of partition
2.
Rights against individual co-owners in case of partition
3.
Partition in case co-owners cannot agree

Case Studies:
De Guia vs. CA (413 SCRA 114)
Any co-owner may file an action under Art. 487 not only against a third person, but also
against another co-owner who takes exclusive possession of the property. In this action, the
Court cannot order that plaintiff be given a specific portion, but to declare parties as co-owner
and also to render an accounting.
Iglesia ni Cristo vs. Ponferrada (505 SCRA 844)
As such co-owners, each of the heirs may properly bring an action for ejectment, forcible
entry and detainer, or any kind of action for the recovery of possession of the subject properties.
Thus, a co-owner may bring such an action, even without joining all the other co-owners as coplaintiffs, because the suit is deemed to be instituted for the benefit of all.

13

Mendoza vs. Coronel (482 SCRA 353)


Re: Article 487 NCC Pursuant to Article 487 NCC, a co-owner without joining the
other co-owners as co-plaintiffs, may alone, bring an action for ejectment, which is a departure
from Palarca vs. Baguisi (38 Phil 177). The certification against forum shopping by the
attorney-in-fact who was authorized by one of the co-owners is also sufficient.
Cruz vs. Catapang (544 SCRA 512)
Re: Article 487 NCC A co-owner cannot give valid consent to another person, not a coowner, to build his house on co-owned property as this will injure the interest of the coownership and prevent the other co-owners from using the property in accordance with their
rights. This constitutes as an act of alteration which needs the consent of the other co-owners.
The non-consenting co-owner may alone may file an action for ejectment against the builder of
the house.
Consent by one co-owner will not warrant dismissal of forcible entry case filed by
other co-owners against the builder. No co-owner can make alterations without consent of all
co-owners.
Pardell vs. Bartolome (23 Phil 450)
A co-owner cannot charge a co-owner for lease of residential upper floor if such coowner is not prevented from using portion as residential space; but co-owner may charge coowner and her husband for using a portion of the lower floor as office.
Adille vs. CA (157 SCRA 455)
The redemption by one of the heirs of the vendor a retro of the whole of a parcel of land,
during the redemption period, will not terminate co-ownership. The heir who redeemed the
whole land is deemed a trustee of the shares of the other heirs. However, after the redemption
period has expired, the co-ownership ceased. Any subsequent acquisition by a former co-owner
will vest full ownership of the property on such person.
Tan vs. CA (172 SCRA 660)
Re: Co-ownership Where the land was mortgaged by the deceased parents, a coownership existed among the heirs and a redemption by one during the redemption period
would inure to the benefit of all the co-owners (Adille vs. CA, 157 SCRA 455). However, coownership was extinguished after the one (1) year redemption period has expired, after which
the mortgagee bank acquired full ownership of the land, and payment by one former co-owner
will vest sole ownership to her alone of the land, notwithstanding any attempt by the bank to
revive the co-ownership by making it appear that sale by the bank was in favor of all the former
co-owners.
Tan vs. Lim (296 SCRA 455)
Re: Articles 494, 496 and 1403 NCC Given that the oral partition in question had
already been fully consummated except for issuance of separate titles, such a partition is valid.
(Hernandez vs. Andal, 78 Phil. 196). Independent and inspite of the statute of limitations, courts
of equity have enforced oral partition when it has been completely or partly performed. Neither
a note or memorandum is necessary for the enforceability of a contract for partition, a contract
of partition is not among the unenforceable contracts enumerated in Articles 1403 NCC. Neither
is a transfer certificate of title nor a subdivision plan is essential to the validity of an oral
partition. Hence, the co-ownership has ceased based on the oral partition, and the former coowners cannot anymore exercise any legal redemption as still a co-owner under Article 1620,
NCC, in case one of the former co-owner sells his right to a third person. .

14

IV.

Some Special Properties (Title IV) Arts. 502-522 (EXCLUDED)

For Mid-Term Examinations: .


(5 weeks = 20 lecture hours)
Possible Exam Date: .
V.

Possession (Title V) Arts. 523-561


Jus possessions is the right of possession independent of the right of ownership
Jus possidendi is the right to the possession of the thing or right as a consequence of
ownership
A.

Elements/Requisites of Possession
1.
2.

B.

The corpus or holding or material detention or enjoyment of the thing or


right;
The animus possidendi or intent to possess the thing or right

In concept of owner, holder, in ones own name, in name of another


Different Degrees of Possession:
1.

Possession without any title whatsoever in violation of the right of the true
owner, such as that of a thief;
2. Possession with a juridical title, but not in the concept of owner, such as that
of lessee, depository;
3. Possession with a just title, or title which is sufficient to transfer ownership,
but not from the true owner;
4. Possession with a just title from the true owner.
Just Title (Art. 541, Possession) means true and valid title (titulo
verdadero, i.e., validity comes from true owner. Just Title (Art. 1117,
Prescription) means colorable title (titulo colorado) which is a mode of
transferring ownership but not from the owner.
C.

Acquisition of Possession (Chapter 2) Arts. 523 and 531


Holding of a thing or enjoyment of a right:
1.
By the material occupation of a thing;
2.
By the exercise of a right;
3.
By the fact that it is subject to the action of our will;
4.
By the proper acts and legal formalities established for acquiring such
right

D.

Effects of Possession (Chapter 3) Arts. 539-561


Possessor in Good Faith Arts. 544, 526-527
not aware that there exists in his title or mode of acquisition any
flaw which invalidates it (Arts. 526-527)
consists in the reasonable belief that the person from he received
the thing was the owner thereof and could transmit his ownership
(Art. 1127)

15

Rights of A Possessor in Good Faith


a.
b.

Right to pending fruits Art. 545


Right to be reimbursed
(1)
Necessary and useful expenses Arts. 546-547
(2)
Expenses for pure luxury Art. 548
Necessary expenses are those incurred for the preservation of the
thing
Useful expenses are those incurred for the greater productivity or
utility of the thing
Expenses for pure luxury are those incurred for the convenience
and enjoyment of the possessor, but which do not affect the
existence, productivity or utility of the thing itself

Possessor in Bad Faith Arts. 449, 549, 552


Case Studies:
Tuatis vs. Escol (604 SCRA 471)
Amount to be refunded to a builder under Art. 546 should be the current market value of
the improvement.
Pecson vs. CA (244 SCRA 407)
It is the current market value of the improvements which should be made the basis for
reimbursement to the builder in good faith.
E.

Loss or Unlawful Deprivation of Possession/Recovery of Possession:


1.

Movable Property Arts. 559, 1505 (3)


Doctrine of Irreinvindicability (Art. 559 is subject to the following):
a.
b.

If the true owner has lost a movable;


If such owner has been unlawfully deprived of a
movable

Period to Recover Arts. 1140, 1134, 1132, 1133


Not withstanding Art. 559, the owner of a movable who has lost it, or who
has been unlawfully deprived thereof, can no longer recover it from the
possessor:
a. If recovery is barred by prescription (4 yrs. or 8 yrs. based on
Art. 1132, NCC)
b. If the possessor had acquired the thing from a person who had
apparent authority to sell from the owner (Art. 1505, par. 1)
c. If it was acquired from a merchants store, fairs or market (Art.
1505, par. 3)
d. But movables possessed through a crime can never be acquired
through prescription by the offender (Art. 1133)
Finder of Lost Movable Arts. 719-720

16
Where the finding of lost movable must deposit the same with the
mayor who shall announce publicly for two (2) consecutive weeks. Six
(6) months after publication, the same shall be awarded to the finder if
owner does not appear.
Distinguished from voidable title Art. 1506

Remedy:
c.

Replevin is an action for manual delivery of personal property


(Rule 60, Rules of Court)

Case Studies:
Edca Publishing & Distributing Corp. vs. Santos (184 SCRA 614)
Re: Article 559, in relation to Articles 1475 (perfection of contract of sale, 1475
(ownership transferred upon delivery) and 1478, NCC Where books were sold and invoice
issued, by Edca to an impostor, who issued a check which bounced, petitioner Edca cannot
recover the books from respondent, who purchased the books from impostor, in good faith relying
on the invoice issued by petitioner Edca to impostor.
Ownership of the books was transferred upon delivery to the impostor (Article 1475), and
non-payment thereof only creates the right of Edca against the impostor to demand payment, or
rescind contract or to criminal prosecution in case of bouncing checks.
Cruz vs. Pahati (98 Phil. 788)
Re: Article 559 (doctrine of irreinvindicability of title) and 1505 (nemo dat quod non
habit) Where the owner of the car has been unlawfully deprived of the possession thereof, by
the scheme of a third person, who succeeded to sell the car to an innocent buyer, the owner may
still recover the car, without reimbursing the buyer for the price paid therefor. Even an honest
purchaser, under a defective title, cannot resist the claim of the true owner. The common law
principle that Where one of two innocent parties must suffer by a fraud perpetrated by another,
the law imposes the loss upon the party who, by his misplaced confidence has enabled the fraud
to be perpetuated cannot be applied wherein, as in this case, there is an express statutory
provision, Article 599 NCC. Equity follows the law.
Aznar vs. Yapdiangco (13 SCRA 486)
Re: Articles 559, 1506 and 712, NCC Where a car was sold by the owner thereof, who
has not been paid and who did not intend to deliver the car until paid by the buyer, and the buyer
was able to sell and deliver the car to an innocent purchaser for value, the owner may still
recover the same without reimbursement pursuant to Article 559, NCC.
Article 1506 NCC which provides: Where the seller of goods has a voidable title
thereto, but his title has not been voided at the time of the sale, the buyer acquires good title to
the goods, provided he buys them in good faith, for value, and without notice of the sellers
defect of title is not applicable because the buyer never acquired title as there was no delivery
of the car by the owner.
Dizon vs. Suntay (47 SCRA 160)
Re: Article 559, NCC The owner of a diamond ring who delivered the ring to an agent
for sale on commission, and the agent instead pledged the ring to a pawnshop, the owner can
recover the ring from the pawnshop, without reimbursement to the pawnshop of the amount

17
borrowed, under Article 559 NCC. The conviction of an embezzler is not essential to recover the
movable by the owner from third party. (Areneas vs. Raymundo 19 Phil. 47). Teehankee, Jr.
concurring: The phrase unlawfully deprived defined in relation to Article 559 NCC is not
used in a specific sense of deprivation by robbery or theft. It extends to all cases where there has
been no valid transmission of ownership, including depositary, or lessee who has sold the same,
where the owner is undoubtedly unlawfully deprived of his property, and may recover the same
from a possessor in good faith. (Note: The first part of Article 559 which provides: The
possession of movable property acquired in good faith is equivalent to title states the general
rule of irreinvindicability which the second part regarding loss or unlawful deprivation
of the movable are the exceptions to irreinvindicability.
Edu vs. Gomez (129 SCRA 603)
In the meantime, the possessor of the stolen car who purchased the same from the
registered owner in good faith, is entitled to and should not be deprived of the possession thereof
until a competent court rules otherwise.
2.

Immovable Property
Remedies:
a.

Forcible Entry and Unlawful Detainer which is a summary


proceeding to recover material or physical possession, must be
filed within one (1) year from the accrual of action with the proper
municipal or municipal circuit court. It may be accompanied with a
prayer for issuance of a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction in
forcible entry cases (Art. 539) and illegal detainer cases (Art. 1674)
based on Rule 70 of the Rules of Court;

b.

Accion Publiciana which is a plenary action (which is with a


complete or formal hearing or trial as distinguished from a
summary hearing in forcible entry/unlawful detainer cases) to
recover the possession of the property and which is to be filed
within 10 years after the possession is lost (Art. 555, No. 4, CC).
The proper jurisdictional court is provided under B.P. 129 Sec.
19(2).

c.

Accion Reinvindicatoria which is an action to recover possession


of property based on ownership which must be filed within 10 or 30
years, as the case may be, after the owner has been deprived of his
property.

Case Studies:
De Vera vs. Agloro (448 SCRA 203)
Art. 433 is not applicable to a purchaser of extrajudicially foreclosed real estate
mortgage. After the expiration of the redemption period, said purchaser may avail of Sec. 7 of
Act No. 3135 and ask for a writ of possession without notice to persons interested on the
property. An ex parte petition for the issuance of a possessory writ under Section 7 of Act No.
3135 is not, strictly speaking, a "judicial process" as contemplated in Article 433 of the Civil
Code. It is a judicial proceeding for the enforcement of one's right of possession as purchaser
in a foreclosure sale. It is not an ordinary suit filed in court, by which one party "sues another
for protection of a right, or the prevention or redress of a wrong." It is a non-litigious
proceeding authorized in an extrajudicial foreclosure of mortgage pursuant to Act No. 3135, as
amended.

18
Manuel vs. CA (199 SCRA 608)
In an ejectment case, the issue of ownership should not be delived into, for an ejectment
action lies even against the owner of the property. The fact of possession in itself has a positive
value and is endowed with a distinct standing of its own. By this respect for possessory right a
wrongful possessor may be upheld by the courts but this is only temporary for the maintenance
of public order. The question of ownership and possession de jure is to be settled in the proper
court and in a proper action.
Hrs. of Valeriano Concha, Sr. vs. Lumocso (540 SCRA 1)
Original jurisdiction over cases involving title to or possession of real property or any
interest therein under B.P. 129 is divided between first and second level courts, with assessed
value of real property as benchmark and value of trees cut does not affect jurisdiction of courts.
If assessed value is over P20T , the jurisdiction is with RTC if actions involve title to or
possession of real property (B.P. 129, Sec. 19(2)).
Mina vs. Vianzon (426 SCRA 56)
Only MTC (court of origin) can issue writ of execution/demolition in ejectment cases;
RTC may only issue if the case is pending appeal.
Geonzon vda. De Barrera vs. Heirs of Vicente Legaspi (565 SCRA 192)
With the modifications introduced by R.A. No. 7691 in 1994, the jurisdiction of the first
level courts has been expanded to include jurisdiction over other real actions where the assessed
value does not exceed P20,000, P50,000 where the action is filed in Metro Manila. The first level
courts thus have exclusive original jurisdiction over accion publiciana and accion
reivindicatoria where the assessed value of the real property does not exceed the aforestated
amounts. Accordingly, the jurisdictional element is the assessed value of the property. Assessed
value is understood to be "the worth or value of property established by taxing authorities on the
basis of which the tax rate is applied. Commonly, however, it does not represent the true or
market value of the property
Mendiola vs. CA (106 SCRA 130)
The phrase every possessor (Art. 530) covers all kinds of possession, from that of the
owner or mere holder, except that which constitutes a crime, should be respected and
protected by means of laws of procedure.
Dizon vs. CA (264 SCRA 391)
Although it is proper for the RTC, in an appeal in an ejectment case, to delve on the issue
of ownership and receive evidence on possession de jure, it cannot adjudicate with semblance of
finality the ownership of property to either party by ordering the cancellation of TCT of one
party.
Vda. De Salazar vs. CA (250 SCRA 305)
The defendant in an ejectment case having died before the rendition by the trial court of
its decision therein, its failure to effectuate a formal substitution of heirs before its rendition of
judgment does not invalidate such judgment where the heirs themselves appeared before the trial
court, participated in the proceedings therein, and presented evidence in defense of deceased
defendant, it undeniably being evident that the heirs themselves sought their day in court and
exercised their right to due process. Ejectment, being an action involving recovery of real
property, is a real action which as such, is not extinguished by the defendant's death. There is no
dispute that an ejectment case survives the death of a party, which death did not extinguish the
deceased's civil personality. More significantly, a judgment in an ejectment case is conclusive

19
between the parties and their successors in interest by title subsequent to the commencement of
the action.
Heirs of Guido & Isabel Yaptinchay vs. Del Rosario (304 SCRA 19)
Re: Article 533 NCC Declaration of Heirship must first be made in a Special
Proceedings, before the alleged heirs can file an action to recover a parcel of land allegedly
owned by their deceased ascendant, otherwise the complaint is dismissible on the ground that
the suit was not brought in the name of the real party in interest.
The trial court in a recovery action filed by the alleged heirs of decedent cannot make a
declaration of heirship as such declaration can only be made in a special proceeding which is
a remedy by which a party seeks to establish a status, a right or a particular fact.
Lao vs. CA (275 SCRA 237)
Where the vendee in a deed of sale files an ejectment case against the vendor at the
MTCC and the vendor sets up the defense of ownership in that the sale is in reality an equitable
and where both parties present evidence without objection to the MTCs jurisdiction to decide on
questions of ownership, MTC may rule on the issue of ownership and the corollary issue of
whether subject deed is one of sale or of equitable mortgage.
Casanova vs. Lacsamana (90 SCRA 68)
Re: Article 539 NCC - A writ of execution issued pursuant to a final and executory
judgment in an ejectment case does not authorize sheriff to demolish or remove improvements
introduced by defendant on leased premises. There must first be due hearing and defendant must
be given reasonable time by the court to remove the improvements pursuant to Rule 39, Section
14, Rules of Court (now Rule 39, Section 10 paragraph d of the Revised Rules of Court).
Lavibo vs. CA (271 SCRA 143)
Where in reality the suit is one for rescission of a contract to sell, an action for ejectment
is premature until after the contract is actually rescinded in an action before the RTC.
VI.

Usufruct (Title VI) Arts. 562-612


As distinguished from emphyteusis a contract which a landed estate was leased to a
tenant, either in perpetuity or for a long term in years, upon the reservation of an
annual rent or cannon, and upon the condition that the lessee should improve the
property with the right of lessee to alienate the estate at pleasure or pass it to his
heirs by descent, and free from any revocation, re-entry or claim for forfeiture on
the part of the grantor, except for non-payment of rent.
A.

Characteristics
Sources of Usufruct Art. 563

Law
Will of private persons in act expressed in acts inter-vivos
Last Will and Testament
Prescription

Requisites:

20
1.
2.

B.

Essential right to enjoy property of another


Accidental the obligation of preserving the form and
substance of such property which may be dispensed with in
an abnormal usufruct.

Classification
Abnormal Usufruct Art. 573, 574
Those where the usufructuary does not have the obligation of preserving
the form or substance of the property which is the object of the usufruct.

C.

Rights and Obligations of Usufructuary (Chapters 2 & 3) Arts. 566-602


Necessary expenses incurred by the usufructuary shall be reimbursable (Art. 546)
but not useful expenses and expenses for mere pleasure.
Caucion Juratoria Art. 587
If the usufructuary who has not given security claims, by virtue of a
promise under oath, the delivery of furniture necessary for his use, and that he and
his family be allowed to live in a house included in the usufruct, the court may
grant this petition, after due consideration of the facts of the case.

Case Study:
Rizal Mercado vs. Hidalgo Rizal (67 Phil 608)
PAYMENT OF LAND TAX; USUFRUCTUARY; NAKED OWNER. Pursuant the
provision of article 505 of the Civil Code, the tax; directs burdens the capital, that is, the real
value of the property and should be paid by the owner (One Lengco vs. Monroy, G. R. No. 19411,
July 18, 1923). It is contended, however, that under the second paragraph of the aforesaid
article, if the usufructuary should pay the tax, he would be entitled to reimbursement for the
amount thereof only upon the expiration of the usufruct, and the usufruct being still afoot, it is
premature for the plaintiffs as usufructuaries who advanced the payment of the tax, to bring the
action for the recovery of what they paid.
D.

Extinguishment Of Usufruct (Chapter 4) Arts. 603-612

Case Study:
Vda. de Albar vs. Fabie Carandang (106 Phil. 855)
Re: Article 607 NCC (formerly Article 517 Old Civil Code) A life usufruct on the land
and building thereon is not extinguished by the destruction of the building, as a usufruct is only
extinguished by the total loss of the thing subject of the encumbrance. Any war damage payment
(or insurance) received by the naked owner is subject to usufructuary for life and usufructuary
should be paid 6% interest from the time payment is received by the naked owner.The new
construction and cost of the building are for the usufructuary to decide, being the administrator
of the property.
For Semi-Final Examinations: .
(5 weeks = 20 lecture hours)
Possible Exam Date: .

21

VII.

Easements/Servitudes (Title VII) Arts. 613-693


A.
B.

Characteristics
Different Kinds of Easement (Chapter 1 Section 1) Arts. 613-619

Kinds of Easement As To Recipient Of Benefit:


1. Real Or Praedal Easement (Art. 613)
2. Personal Easement (Art. 614)
Case Studies:
Jabonete vs. Monteverde (16 SCRA 462)
A personal easement does not extend to the successors in interest to whom it is granted.
Unisource Commercial and Development Corporation vs. Chung (593 SCRA 230)
A voluntary personal easement is not extinguished by the transfer of the dominant
estate.The mere fact that respondents subdivided the property does not extinguish the easement.
Article 618 of the Civil Code provides that if the dominant estate is divided between two or more
persons, each of them may use the easement in its entirety, without changing the place of its use,
or making it more burdensome in any other way.
Kinds of Easement As To Manner They Are Exercised (Arts 615 and 616):
1.
2.
3.
C.

Continuous Easement and Discontinuous Easement (Art. 615)


Apparent Easement and Non-Apparent Easement (Art. 615)
Positive and Negative Easement (Art. 616)

Modes of Acquiring Easement (Chapter 1 Section 2) Arts. 620-626


1. Title continuous & discontinuous; apparent and non-apparent easements.
2. Prescription of 10 years only for continuous and apparent easements.
Negative easement from time of notarial prohibition (Art. 621)
Positive easement from time owner of dominant estate made use of
easement (Art. 621)

D.

Kinds of Easement As To Source (Art. 619):


1.

Legal Easements (Chapter 2) Arts. 634-687


a.

b.

Easements Relating To Waters (Chap. 2 Sec. 2) Arts. 637-648


Art. 51 of P.D. 1067
The banks of rivers and streams and the shores of the seas and
lakes throughout their entire length and within a zone of:
- 3 meters in urban areas
- 20 meters in agricultural areas
- 40 meters in forest areas
Easement of Right of Way (Chap 2 Sec 3) Arts. 649-657
Requisites For Right Of Way Easement : (Art. 649-650)

22

1. Dominant Estate is surrounded by other immovables and is


without adequate outlet to a public highway ;
2. After payment of proper indemnity;
3. Isolation was not due to the proprietors act;
4. Right of way claimed is at a point lease prejudicial to the
servient estate
Case Studies:
Ronquillo vs. Roco (103 Phil 84)
Re: Articles 620 and 622, NCC An easement of right of way can be acquired only by
virtue of title, but not by prescription of ten (10) years; a right of way, although apparent,
because it is made known and continually kept in view by external sign, it is discontinuous
because it is used only at intervals and depends upon the acts of man.
Abellana, Sr. vs. CA (208 SCRA 316)
Re: Article 620 and 622 NCC The use of a footpath or road may be apparent but it is
not a continuous easement because its uses are at intervals and depends upon the acts of man.
And if such footpath is converted to subdivision roads, such subdivision roads do not acquire the
status of public streets. The owner thereof may exclude other person from the use of such
subdivision roads.
Velasco vs. Cusi, Jr. (105 SCRA 616)
A public street already existing when a title is issued which included the street, the buyer
of land is bound thereby and the land is burdened with the easement even if not registered.
Woodridge School Inc. vs. ARB Construction Co., Inc. (516 SCRA 176).
Re: Articles 620, 622, 649 and 650 NCC The use of the subdivision roads by the
general public does not strip it of its private character (Abellana, Sr. vs. CA, 208 SCRA 316).
The Local Government should first acquire them by donation, purchase or expropriation.
However, a private entity, like petitioner Woodridge, to be entitled to legal easement of
right of way thru the subdivision roads must comply with the following requisites: (1) the
dominant estate is surrounded by other immovables and has no adequate outlet to a public
highway (Article 649 NCC); (2) payment of proper indemnity (Article 649 NCC); (3) the
isolation was not due to the acts of the proprietor of the dominant estate (Article 649 NCC); (4)
the right of way claimed is at the point least prejudicial to the servient estate. (Article 650 NCC).
(Costabella Corp. vs. CA, 193 SCRA 333, 339).
Cristobal vs. CA (291 SCRA 122)
Re: Articles 649 and 650 NCC Among the four (4) requirements for a legal easement of
right of way (see Costabella Corp. vs. CA, 193 SCRA 333, 339), is that the dominant estate,
being surrounded by other immovables has no adequate outlet to a public highway (Article 649,
first paragraph, NCC). Thus, mere inconvenience on the part of the dominant estate is not
sufficient as a basis for setting up a compulsory easement, since an easement involves an
abnormal restriction on the rights of the servient estate.
If the developer of the subdivision
wherein the dominant estate is located, failed to properly develop the subdivision road lots, thru
which the owner of the dominant estate can pass thru, resort must first be to the Housing and
Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) pursuant to Sec. 22 of P.D. 957 to properly develop the
subdivision road lots and not the regular courts under the doctrine of Primary Administrative

23
Jurisdiction. In the meantime, the owner of dominant estate cannot demand for an easement of
right of way thru another parcel of land.
Costabella Corp. vs. CA (193 SCRA 333)
When there is already an existing adequate outlet from the dominant estate to a public
highway, even if it is inconvenient, the need to open another servitude is entirely unjustified.
Unisource Commercial and Development Corporation vs. Chung (593 SCRA 230)
A right of way, being a legal easement, may be extinguished by the opening of another
outlet. This not applicable to a voluntary easement; hence, even the later opening of an
adequate outlet to a highway, will not extinguish a voluntary easement.
c.

Easement of Party Wall (Chap 2 Sec 4) Arts. 658-666


Party Wall is a kind of co-ownership but it partakes also of an
easement, with the party wall itself as the servient estate, and
dominant estates are the two adjacent estates divided by the party
wall.

d.

Easement of Light & View (Chap 2 Sec 5) Arts. 667-673


2 Kinds of Windows:
1) Restricted Windows (Art. 669)
for light only; not for view
2) Regular or Full Windows (Art. 670)
-For both light and view ;
Distances To Be Observed
Non-observance of distances does not give rise to prescription:
o Direct View 2 meters
- Non-projecting opening-frm outer line of
wall;
- Projecting opening from outer line of the
opening
When title acquired 3 meters
o Side/Oblique View- 60 cms. From the dividing line
between the 2 properties
Counting of Period Of Prescription:
1)
2)

Case Studies:

From opening of window through party wall; this is a


positive easement and is apparent (Art. 668, No. 1 in
relation to Art. 621)
From time of formal prohibition upon the owner of
adjoining land if window through a wall on the dominant
estate; this is a negative easement and is non-apparent but
becomes apparent when the formal prohibition is made
(Art. 668, No. 2 in relation to Art. 621)

24

Cortes vs. Yu-Tibo (2 Phil 24)


Re: Articles 668 paragraph 2 and 673 NCC (formerly Article 673 Old Civil Code)
When a person opens windows in his own building, he does nothing more than exercise an act of
ownership, it does not by itself create an easement of light and view. The ten (10) year
prescriptive period of light and view, being a negative easement (which prohibit the owner of the
adjoining property, the servient estate, from constructing a building less than 3-meters away
from the common boundary) will commence to run only from the time of formal or notarial
prohibition by the owner of dominant estate on the owner of the servient estate. This must be so
because an easement constitutes a limitation on the dominical rights of the owner of the servient
estate.
Gargantos vs. Tan Yanon (108 Phil 888)
Re: Article 624 NCC Where adjoining estates owned by just one person, windows were
constructed on one estate which serve as passages of light and view on the adjoining estate, the
existence of windows is equivalent to title, for the visible and permanent sign of an easement of
light and view is the title that characterizes the easement under Article 624 NCC. But while the
law declares that the easement is to continue, the easement actually arises for the first time
only upon alienation of either estate, inasmuch as before that time, there is no easement to speak
of. (Article 613, NCC), as both estates are owned by the same person.
e.

Drainage of Buildings (Chap 2 Sec 6) Arts. 674-676

Case Study:
Taedo vs. Bernad (165 SCRA 86)
Easement of drainage and use of septic tank which was used by both parcels continue
and is not extinguished by the sale of the two (2) parcels of land to two (2) different vendees.
f.
g.
h.

Intermediate Distances & Works for Certain Constructions &


Plantings (Chap 2 Sec 7) Arts. 677-681
Easement Against Nuisance(Chap 2 Sec 8) Arts. 682-683
Lateral & Subjacent Support (Chap 2 Sec 9) Art. 684-687
Lateral Support the land being supported and the supporting land
are on the same plane
Subjacent Support the land being supported is above the
supporting land

2.

E.

Voluntary Easements (Chapter 3) Arts. 688-693


a.
Effect of zoning ordinance

Modes of Acquiring Easements


1.
Compulsory easements Arts. 620-624
2.
Easement of light and view Arts. 669-673
a. Negative Easement when the openings are made in ones own wall;
b. Positive Easement when the openings are made on anothers wall.

VIII. Nuisance (Title VIII) Arts. 694-707

25

Kinds of Nuisance and Manner of Abatement:


1.

Public Nuisance affects a community or neighborhood or


any considerable number of persons.
Remedies:
a. Prosecution under Penal code or local ordinance;
b. Civil Action;
c. Abatement without judicial proceedings
Requirements for abatement of public nuisance by a private person (Art. 704)

2.

Private Nuisance
Remedies:
a. Civil Action;
b. Abatement without judicial proceedings.
Removing it or if necessary by destroying the thing which constitutes the
nuisance without committing a breach of the peace or doing unnecessary
injury.

Nuisance per se an act, occupation or structure which is a nuisance at all times and
under any circumstances, regardless of location or surroundings; it is a
nuisance in and of itself, without regard to circumstances like a house
of ill-fame.
Nuisance per accidens is one that becomes a nuisance by reason of circumstances and
surroundings; it is not a nuisance by its nature but it may become so by
reason of its locality, surrounding or the manner in which it is
conducted.
Attractive nuisance A person who maintains in his premises a dangerous instrumentality
of a character which is attractive to children of tender years at play and
who fails to exercise due diligence to prevent such children from
playing therewith is liable to a child who is injured thereby, even if the
child is technically a trespasser.
Case Study:
Hildalgo Enterprises vs. Balandan, et. al. (91 Phil 488)
Attractive Nuisance Doctrine means that one who maintains on his premises
dangerous instrumentalities or appliances of a character likely to attract children in play, and
who fails to exercise ordinary care to prevent children from playing therewith, is liable to a child
of tender years who is injured thereby even if the child is technically a trespasser in the
premises.A swimming pool or pond or reservoir of water is not considered an attractive
nuisance because children are early instructed against the danger lurking in bodies of water,
like streams, or pools.
DIFFERENT MODES OF
ACQUIRING OWNERSHIP
(New Civil Code, Book III )
Arts. 712 -1155
Mode of acquiring ownership and other real rights is the specific cause which gives rise
to them as a result of the concurrence of a special condition of things, of the capacity and

26
intention of persons, and of compliance with the requisites of law; while title refers to the
juridical act which provides a means or occasion for the acquisition of ownership or any other
real right, but which by itself is insufficient to produce it.
Consequently, mode directly produces a real right while title serves only to produce a
means or occasion for its acquisition. Mode is the cause, title is the means.
Example: Contract of Sale is the title and tradition is the mode.
Ownership is acquired by:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.

Occupation;
Intellectual creation;
Donation;
Testate and Intestate Succession;
Prescription
Tradition as a consequence of certain contracts;
Law;
Law as a mode of acquiring ownership, refers to situations/instances where the law,
independent of the other modes of acquiring ownership, automatically and direct vests
the ownership of a thing in a certain individual once the prescribed requisites or
conditions are present or complied with:
Examples:

Hidden treasure (Art. 438)


Naturally falling fruits (Art. 681)
Abandoned river beds. (Art. 457)

8. Tradition
Different Kinds of Tradition:
a.
Real tradition delivery or transfer of a thing from hand
to hand (movable) or by certain material and possessory
acts of the grantee performed in the presence and with the
consent of the grantor (immovables) (Art. 1497)
b.

Constructive tradition delivery of a movable or


immovable by means of acts or signs indicative thereof
(Art. 1498)
(i)
(ii)

(iii)

(iv)

Traditio symbolica - delivery of key to warehouse (Art. 1498, p.


2);
Traditio longa manu grantor pointing to
the grantee the thing which is delivered
which at the time must be within sight (Art.
1499);
Traditio brevi manu grantee is already in
possession of the thing under a title which
is not of ownership, such as when the
lessee purchases from the lessor the object
of the lease (Art. 1499);
Traditio
constitutum
possessorium grantor after
alienating
the
thing,
continues in possession
under a different title, as

27
lessee, pledge or depositary
(Art. 1590)
c.

Quasi Tradition exercise of a right by the grantee with


the acquiescence of the grantor (Art. 1496, 2nd clause);

d.

Tradition por ministerio de la ley


delivery which takes place by
operation of law (Arts. 1497
1501)

For Final Examinations: .


(4 weeks and 2 days = 18 lecture hours)
Possible Exam Date: .
I.

Occupation (Title I) Arts. 713-720

II.

Intellectual Creation (Title II) Arts. 721-724 (EXCLUDED)

III.

Donation (Title III) Arts. 725-773


1.
2.
3.

Definition Arts. 725-6, 746


Characteristics
a.
Extent to which donor may donate property
b.
Reservations and reversions
Kinds
a.
Donation Inter Vivos Art. 729

Case Study:
Hrs. of Sevilla vs. Sevilla (402 SCRA 512)
Re: Article 734 A donation inter vivos is immediately operative and final. As a mode of
acquiring ownership, it results in the effective transfer of title over property from the donor to
the donee and the donation is perfected from the moment the donor knows of the acceptance by
the donee. And once the donation is accepted, the donee becomes the absolute owner of the
property donated.
b.
c.

Donation By Reason of Marriage Family Code Arts. 82-83, 86


Donation Mortis Causa Art. 728 (see Bonsato vs. CA, 95 Phil 482)

Case Study:
Bonsato vs. CA (95 Phil 482)
Re: Articles 728 (formerly Article 620, Old Civil Code) and Article 729 (New provision
of NCC) Despite the widespread use of the term donation mortis causa, it is well-established
at present, that the Civil Code of 1889, in its Article 620 (now Article 728, NCC) broke away
from the Roman Law tradition, and followed the French doctrine that no one may both donate
and retain, by merging the erstwhile donation mortis cause with testamentary dispositions, thus
suppressing said donations as an independent legal concept. (The term donation mortis causa
as commonly employed is merely a convenient name to designate those dispositions of property
that are void when made in the form of donations, instead of a will since the disposition is to take

28
effect after the death of the transferor). A disposition post mortem, erroneously referred to as
donation mortis causa should reveal the following characteristics: (1) the transferor retains
the ownership (full or naked) and control the property while alive; (2) the transfer is revocable,
before his death, by the transferor at will, ad mutum; and (3) the transfer should be void if the
transferor should survive the transferee. Hence, where the donor only reserved for himself,
during his lifetime, the owners share of the fruits or produce, the donation is inter-vivos, and is
valid, having complied with the formalities required under Article 633 Old Civil Code (now
Article 749, NCC). However, the Supreme Court has ruled that if the donation provides that
title thereto shall pass to the donee only upon the donors death, or that donor reserves the
right to dispose of the property or that the donation takes effect 10 years after the donors
death, the donations are mortis causa and should comply with the formal requirements of a
last will and testament. (Puig vs. Peaflorida, 16 SCRA 136; Spouses Sicad vs. CA, 294 SCRA
183).
d.
e.

Onerous Donation Art. 733


Simple, modal, conditional

Case Study:
Lagazo vs. CA (287 SCRA 18)
Even if the donee paid voluntarily unpaid taxes on land donated, donation is still simple
donation, not onerous donation and must be accepted formally pursuant to Art. 749.
4.

Formalities required
a.
How made and accepted

Case Study:
Genato vs. De Lorenzo (23 SCRA 618)
If the donation was a joint one to both donees, one could not accept independently of his
co-donee for there is no accretion among donees unless expressly provided or unless they be
husband and wife.
b.

Perfection the moment that the minds of the donor and


donee meet, both with capacity to act (Art. 734)

Case Study:
Lagazo vs. CA (287 SCRA 18)
Re: Articles 734, 746 and 749, NCC Donations, like any other contract, an agreement
of the parties is essential. The donation following the theory of cognition (Article 1319, NCC)
is perfected only upon the moment the donor knows of the acceptance by the donee.
Furthermore, if the acceptance is made in a separate instrument, the donor shall be notified
thereof in an authentic form, and this step shall be noted in both instruments. Acceptance of the
donation by the donee is, therefore, indispensable; its absence makes the donation void.
c.

Differences between formalities for donation of real, personal properties


(1) Movables Art. 748
(2) Immovables Art. 749

Case Studies:
Abragan vs. de Centenera (46 Phil. 213)

29
Re: Article 749, NCC Donations of immovables, which were accepted but not in a
public instrument are void; however, if ratified by the sole heir of the donor, such ratification,
though not having retroactive effect to the prejudice of creditors, is effective as a quitclaim on
the part of the heir who is estopped from asserting any rights to the properties.
Aranote vs. Maglunob (579 SCRA 620)
Requisites for validity of donation of real property:
(i)
(ii)
(iii)

it must be made in a public instrument;


it must be accepted in the same Deed of Donation or in a separate public instrument
if the acceptance is in a separate instrument, the donor must be notified in an authentic
form and the same must be noted in both instruments

Quilala vs. Alcantara (371 SCRA 311)


Re: Article 749, NCC The lack of acknowledgment by the donee of his acceptance
before the notary public, if such acceptance was made in the same instrument, does not render
the donation null and void. It cannot be considered a private document in part and a public
document in another part. The instrument must be treated in its entirety.
Pea vs. CA (193 SCRA 717)
Re: Articles 725 and 749 NCC The Deed of Assignment of the right of redemption of
mortgaged parcels of land, sold at public auction, which was without any consideration, but
based on past services rendered, is a donation under Article 725. To be valid, the donation must
be made in a public document and the acceptance must be made in the same or separate
instrument (Article 749, NCC). Hence, there being no acceptance, the Deed of Assignment is
void.
Lagazo vs. CA (287 SCRA 18)
If acceptance is made in a separate instrument, there is still need for proof that a formal
notice of such acceptance was received by the donor and noted in both instruments (the deed of
donation and the separate instrument embodying acceptance). The instrument showing
acceptance must also be recorded in the Register of Deeds. Where the Deed of Donation fails to
show acceptance or where the formal notice of acceptance made in a separate document is not
noted in the deed of donation and separate acceptance, the donation is null and void.
Shoppers Paradise Realty & Devt. Corp. vs. Roque (419 SCRA 93)
Non-registration of a deed of donation does not affect its validity. As being itself a mode
of acquiring ownership, donation results in the effective transfer of title. To bind third persons,
the donation must be registered in the Registry of Deeds.
5.

Qualifications of donor, donee


a.

Those persons disqualified to inherit under Art. 1027 are also disqualified
to be donees. However, those persons who are incapacitated to inherit by
reason of unworthiness under Art. 1032 may be qualified to become
donees.
Art. 1027 The following are incapable of succeeding:

30
(1)

The priest who heard the confession of the testator during his last
illness, or the minister of the gospel who extended spiritual aid to
him during the same period;
- The will must be made by testator during (not before)
his last illness

(2)

The relatives of such priest or minister of the gospel within the


fourth degree, the church, order, chapter, community, organization,
or institution to which such priest or minister may belong;
- Relatives should be by consanguinity; hence wife of
minister may inherit
- Since the brother of such priest is also disqualified, the
free portion may by accretion go to the other instituted
heirs who are not related to the disqualified priest within
the 4th civil degree

(3)

A guardian with respect to testamentary dispositions given by a


ward in his favor before the final accounts of the guardianship have
been approved, even if the testator should die after the approval
thereof; nevertheless, any provision made by the ward in favor of
the guardian when the latter is his ascendant, descendant, brother,
sister, or spouse, shall be valid;
- Refers to guardians of both property and person of ward

(4)

Any attesting witness to the execution of a will, the spouse, parents,


or children, or any one claiming under such witness, spouse,
parents, or children;
- Exception: when there are 3 other competent witnesses
to the will (Art. 823)
- The notary public is not disqualified

(5)

Any physician, surgeon, nurse, health officer or druggist who took


care of the testator during his last illness;

(6)

Individuals, associations and corporations not permitted by law to


inherit.
- Aborted infants under Art. 41
(intrauterine life of less than 7 months, if aborted infant dies within
24 hrs from delivery)
(intraunterine life of at least 7 months , if aborted infant is dead at
the time of delivery)

b.

Donations to incapacitated persons (not to insane/minors but those


enumerated in Art. 739) shall be void.
Art. 739 The following donations shall be void
1)
2)
3)

c.

Made between persons guilty of adultery or concubinage


Made between persons found guilty of the same criminal offense,
in consideration thereof;
Those made to a public officer or his wife, descendants and
ascendants, by reason of his office

Art. 87 of Family Code prohibits donations between spouses during the


marriage and between persons living together as husband and wife without
the benefit of marriage.

31

Case Study:
Di Siock Jian vs. Sy Lioc Suy (43 Phil 562)
Parent of minor cannot validly accept onerous donations without judicial approval.
6.

Effects of donation/limitations
a.
In general
Art. 751 provides that donations cannot comprehend future property which
is an exception to Art. 1347 which provides that future things may be the
object of contracts.
b.
c.

Double donations
Excessive/inofficious

Case Study:
Imperial vs. CA (316 SCRA 395)
Re: Article 771 (inofficious donations) and 1144 (prescription of actions) The
prescriptive period of an action to reduce an inofficious donation is ten (10) years counted from
the time of the death of the donor, applying Article 1144, NCC (see also Mateo vs. Lagua, 29
SCRA 864). A claim for the legitime in an action to reduce an inofficious donation does not
amount to a claim of title (Visconde vs. CA, 286 SCRA 217), and what is brought to collation is
not the donated property itself, but the value of the property at the time it is donated. The
rationale for this is that the donation is a real alienation which conveys ownership upon its
acceptance, hence, any increase in value or any deterioration or loss thereof is for the account
of the heir or the donee. Thus, even if reduced for being inofficious, petitioner will not receive
his corresponding share in the property donated, but in cash or securities if there are no other
properties of the same class, nature and quality. (Article 1083 and 1074, NCC).
d.
e.

Scope of amount Arts. 750-752


In fraud of creditors Art. 759
Relate to Art. 1387, par. 1 Contract/alienation by gratuitous title by debtor
who did not reserve sufficient property to pay all debts contracted
previously are presumed in fraud of creditors.

6. Void Donations Arts. 739-740, 1027


7. Revocation or reduction
Different Causes/Modes for Revocation of Donations Inter-Vivos and
Prescriptive Period for Filing Action for Revocation:

Supervening birth, survival of a child, or adoption of a minor child by the


donor (Arts. 760-763)
Prescriptive period is 4 years from birth, legitimation, recognition,
adoption of a minor child by the donor or from judicial declaration
of filiation
reduction/revocation is to extent that it exceeds portion that may be
freely disposed o by will;
return fruits as of time of filing of complaint
action transmissible to legitimate and illegitimate children and
descendants
Non-fullment of condition or charge imposed (Art. 764)

32

4 years from non-compliance of condition


return fruits received after having failed to fulfill condition
action transmissible to heirs of donor and may be exercised against
donees heirs
Acts of ingratitude of donee (Arts. 765 and 769)
1 year from time donor had knowledge of fact and it was possible for
him to bring action
donor may demand value of property alienated fixed as of time of
donation
return fruits as of time of filing of complaint
action not transmissible to heirs of donor if donor did not institute
the action for revocation although he could have done so and even if
he should die before the expiration of one year
action cannot be brought against donees heirs unless upon the
latters death the complaint has been filed
Inofficious donations (Arts. 752, 771 to 773)
- four years from death of donor
- return fruits as of time of filing of complaint
- action may be filed by those with the right to the legitime, their
heirs and successors.
Note: Reductions of inofficious donations are governed by Arts. 760 to
763 if at the time of the donation, the donor did not have any children,
whether legitimate, legitimated or illegitimate. Reductions of inofficious
donations are governed by Arts. 752, 771 to 773 if at the time of donation,
donor had children, legitimate, legitimated or illegitimate.

Case Studies:
Noceda vs. CA (313 SCRA 504)
Re: Articles 765 and 769 NCC Donee who usurped property of donor is guilty of
ingratitude for an offense against property of donor; hence, donation may be revoked. The law
does not require conviction of the donee; it is enough that the offense be proved in the action for
revocation.
Santiago vs. Republic (87 SCRA 294)
Re: Article 764 NCC Republic as donee, cannot set up as defense the doctrine of nonsuability of the state in case of an action for revocation of a donation for violation of conditions
under which it received gratuitously certain property. Its consent to be sued is presumed.A
donor of land to the Governemnt is entitled to go to court in case of an alleged breach of the
conditions in the deed of donation. Consent to be sued is therein implied on the grounds of
equity.
IV.

Succession (Title IV) Arts. 774-1105 (EXCLUDED)

V.

Prescription (Title V) Arts. 1106-1155


Definition Art. 1106
Common Law Prescription is equivalent to acquisitive prescription, that is acquisition
of right through lapse of time. While limitation refers to the time
within which an action may be brought or extinctive prescription.
Under Civil Code Prescription covers both acquisitive and extinctive prescription.

33
(US vs. Serapio 23 Phil 597)
A.

Acquisitive Prescription Art. 1117


1.

Requisites for Ordinary Acquisitive Prescription


a. Capacity to acquire by prescription;
(no prescription between husband and wife, between parent and child
during minority of the other, between guardian and ward during the
continuance of guardianship, between co-owners, etc.)
b. The object must be susceptible of prescription;
(property of the State or any of its subdivisions, except patrimonial
property, movables possessed through a crime by the offender, lands
under the Torrens System of registration with a torrens certificate of
title, are not susceptible of prescription).
c. Possession must be in the concept of owner, public, peaceful,
continuous and uninterrupted;
d. Possession must be by virtue of a title and in good faith;
Good faith for purposes of prescription consists in a reasonable
belief that the person from whom the possessor received the
thing was the owner thereof, and could transfer the ownership
(Article 1127, NCC); or that it consists in the ignorance of the
possessor of any flaw which would invalidate his title or mode
of acquisition. (Article 526, NCC).
Just title for purposes of prescription exists when the adverse
claimant came into possession of the property through one of
the modes recognized by law for the acquisition of ownership
or other real rights, but the grantor was not the owner or could
not transmit any right. (Article 1129, NCC).
e. The period of possession must be four (4) years for movable property
and ten (10) years for immovable property

2. Requisites for Extraordinary Acquisitive Prescription


a. Capacity to acquire by prescription;
(no prescription between husband and wife, between parent and child
during minority of the other, between guardian and ward during the
continuance of guardianship, between co-owners, etc.)
b. The object must be susceptible of prescription;
(property of the State or any of its subdivisions, except patrimonial
property, movables possessed through a crime by the offender, lands
covered by the Torrens System, are not susceptible of prescription).
c. Possession must be in the concept of owner, public, peaceful,
continuous and uninterrupted (Art. 1118, NCC);
d. Possession may be without title and in bad faith;
e. The period of possession must be eight (8) years for movable property
and thirty (30) years for immovable property
3.

What Cannot Be Required By Acquisitive Prescription


a.
Those not within the commerce of men (Art. 1113);

34
b.
c.
d.
B.

Property of the State or any of its subdivisions not patrimonial in


character (Art. 1113);
Movables possessed through a crime (Art. 1133)
Lands registered under the Torrens system (Sec. 47 of PD 1529)

Extinctive Prescription or Prescription of Actions/Statutes of Limitations


1.
2.
3.

Characteristics
Requisites
Periods
Imprescriptible Actions:
(1)
(2)

action to demand a right of way (Article 1143, Civil Code);


action to abate a public or private nuisance (Article. 1143, Civil
Code);
(3) action to declare ordinary contract void (Article 1410, Civil Code);
(4) petition to declare contract of marriage void (Article 39, Family
Code);
(5) petition for probate of will;
(6) action for partition of co-ownership so long as co-owner has not
expressly repudiated co-ownership (Article 494, Civil Code);
(7) action for present or future support, but no support in arrears;
(8) action by beneficiary to recover property placed in trust so long as
trustee has not expressly repudiated the trust;
(9) action by registered owner to recover property brought under the
Torrens System (Section 47, P.D. 1539);
(10) action by the state to recover lands of public dominion;
(11) action to recover movables possessed through a crime against the
offender (Article 1133, Civil Code).
(12) action for quieting of title so long as plaintiff is in possession of the
property (Cabrera vs. CA 267 SCRA 339);
Other Actions
a.
b.
c.

C.

To Recover Movables Art. 1140 (8 years)


To Recover Immovables Art. 1141 (30 years)
Other Actions Arts. 1142-1149
1) Within 10 years upon a written contract, upon an obligation
created by law and upon a judgment (Art.
1144)
2) Within 6 years upon an oral contract; quasi-contract
3) Witihin 5 years other actions whose periods are not fixed in
the Code or other law
4) Within 4 years upon injury to rights of plaintiff; quasi-delict
5) Within 1 year forcible entry and detainer; defamation

Distinction Between Acquisitive and Extinctive Prescription


1. As to elements: the first requires a positive fact, the possession by one who is
not the owner, while the second requires a negative fact, the inaction of the
owner;
2. As to purpose the first is for the purpose of acquisition of rights, while the
second is for the purpose of extinction of rights;
3. As to extent the first is applicable only to real rights which are susceptible of
possession, while the second is applicable to all kinds of rights, real or
personal;

35
4. As to effect the first results in the acquisition and extinction of a real right
while the second merely results in the extinction of a real or personal right.
5. As to interruption
Aquisitive prescription (Arts.1120 to 1125)
o Naturally (possession ceases for over 1 year)
o Civilly (through summons to the possessor)
o Express or tacit (recognition by possessor of the owners right)
Extinctive prescription (Art. 1155)
o
Filed in court
o
Written extra-judicial demand by creditor
o
Written acknowledgment by debtor

Case Studies:
Morales vs. CFI (97 SCRA 872)
Re: Article 106 NCC There are two kinds of prescription provided in the Civil Code.
One is acquisitive, i.e; the acquisition of ownership and other real rights by the lapse of time
(Article 1109, par. 1), other names for acquisitive prescription are adverse possession and
usucapcion. The other kind is extinctive prescription whereby rights and actions are lost by the
lapse of time (Arts. 1106 par. 2 and 1139). Another name for extinctive prescription is limitation
of action.
(Note: Limitation of action or statute of limitation is one of the grounds for a Motion to
Dismiss under Rule 16, Revised Rules of Court). Petitioner filed an action for recovery of
possession, ownership of a parcel of land against private respondents, who in their answer, set
up, among others, the affirmative defense that petitioners (as plaintiff) cause of action is barred
by extinctive prescription or statute of limitations.
During the hearing on the affirmative
defense of extinctive prescription or statute of limitation, the evidence proved that the recovery
action was filed after 10 years but before 30 years from the time private respondents took
possession of the land. The CFI dismissed the complaint, which was reversed/set aside and the
case remanded for trial to the CFI. The action has not prescribed or been barred by the statute
of limitations pursuant to Article 1141, NCC which provides that real actions to recover
immovables prescribe in 30 years. The law requires that one who asserts ownership by ordinary
acquisitive prescription of real estate, good faith and just title are never presumed but must be
proved pursuant to Article 1131 NCC. Hence, ordinary acquisitive prescription, unlike extinctive
prescription or statute of limitations, is not among the grounds for a motion to dismiss (Rule 16,
Rev- Rules of Court) but the same must be threshed out and proved in full blown trial.
Hrs. of Arzadon-Crisologo vs. Raon (532 SCRA 391)
Re: Article 1137 (extraordinary acquisitive prescription) and Article 1123 (civil
interruption of possession). Prescription as a mode of acquiring ownership and other real
rights over immovable is concerned with the lapse of time in the manner and under the
conditions laid down by law, namely: that the possession should be in the concept of owner,
public, peaceful, uninterrupted and adverse. Article 1137, NCC
on acquisitive prescription
provides: ownership and other real rights over immovables also prescribe through
uninterrupted adverse possession thereof for thirty years without need of title or good faith.
Notice of adverse claim does not interrupt the running of acquisitive prescription. It does not
take place of judicial summons under Art. 1123. Hence, extraordinary acquisitive prescription
may bestow ownership on possessor

36

In this case, respondents traced their claim of ownership over a parcel of unregistered
land (not registered under the Torrens System of Registration) from 1962 until the filing of the
Complaint in 1995, or for a period of over thirty years. An adverse claim was filed in 1977.
(Note: Lands covered by Torrens Certificate of Title cannot be acquired by prescription pursuant
to Section 48 of P.D. No. 1529. The Property Registration Decree which provides: Registered
land not subject to prescription No title to registered land in derogation of the title of the
registered owner shall be acquired by prescription).
Hrs. of Maningding vs. CA (276 SCRA 601)
A donation, though void for lack of formal requisites, could be a basis for adverse
possession for extraordinary acquisitive prescription. While a donation propter nuptias is void
for failure to comply with formal requisites, it could still constitute a legal bases for adverse
possession.

Vda. De Cabrera vs. CA (267 SCRA 339)


(Article 1143) An action for reconveyance of a parcel of land based on implied or
constructive trust ordinarily prescribed in ten (10) years, the point of reference being the date of
registration of the issuance of the certificates of title over the property (Article 1144); but this
rule applies only when the plaintiff is not in possession of the property; however, if the person
claiming to be the owner thereof is in actual possession of the property, the right to seek
reconveyance which in effect seeks to quiet title to the property, does not prescribe.
Hrs. of Flores Restar vs. Hrs. of Cichon (475 SCRA 731)
While an action to demand partition does not prescribe, a co-owner may acquire
ownership thereof by clear repudiation of the co-ownership and the co-owners are appraised of
their rights.
Cristobal vs. Melchor, (78 SCRA 175)
Laches is the failure or neglect for an unreasonable and unexplained length of time to
do that which, by exercising due diligence, could or should have been done earlier; it is
negligence or omission to assert a right within a reasonable time, warranting the presumption
that the party entitled thereto either has abandoned it or declined to assert it. (Tijam vs.
Sibonghanoy, 23 SCRA 35).
Rafols vs. Barba (119 SCRA 146)
Essential elements of laches are:(1) Conduct on the part of defendant giving rise to the
situation that led to the complaint and for which the complainant seeks a remedy; (2)Delay
in
asserting the complainants rights, the complainant having had knowledge or notice of
defendants conduct and having been afforded an opportunity to institute the suit; (3)
Lack
of knowledge or notice on the part of the defendant that the complainant would assert the right
on which he bases the suit; and (4)Injury or prejudice to the defendant in the extent relief is
accorded to the complainant or the suit is not barred.
Tenales vs. IAC (143 SCRA 223)
Statute of limitations are statutes of repose, the object of which is to suppress fraudulent
and stale claims from springing up at great distances of time and surprising parties and their
representatives when all the proper vouchers and evidences are lost or the facts have become
obscure from the lapse of time or the defective memory or death or removal of witnesses. Such

37
statutes apply with full force even to most meritorious claims. The purpose of these statutes is to
protect the diligent and vigilant, not those who sleep on their rights.
Nielson & Company, Inc vs. Lepanto Consolidated Mining Co. ( 18 SCRA 1040)
Laches is different from prescription. Prescription is concerned with the fact of delay,
whereas laches is concerned with the effect of delay. Prescription is a matter of time; laches is
principally a question of inequity of permitting a claim to be enforced, this inequity being
founded on some change in the condition of the property or the relation of the parties.
Prescription is statutory; laches is not. Laches applies in equity; whereas prescription applies at
law. Prescription is based on fixed time, laches is not

D.

Interruption Art. 1155


Three Ways In Which Prescription of Action Is Interrupted:
a. Filed before the court
b. Written extra-judicial demand
c. Written acknowledgment of debt by debtor
Interruption of Possession vs. Suspension of Prescription
In interruption of possession all benefits acquired so far from possession ceases.
When the prescription runs again, it is a new one. In suspension of prescription,
the past period is included after prescription is resumed.

VII.

TEXTBOOKS AND REFERENCES:


Textbook:
Property & Prescription
Paras, Civil Code of the Philippines, Vols. II & IV
References:
Tolentino, Civil Code of the Philippines, Vol. II & IV
Aquino, Civil Code of the Philippines, Vol. I & II
Vitug, Civil Law, Vols. II & III
Jurado, Civil Law Reviewer
Albano, Bar Review Guide in Civil Law
Philippine Reports
Supreme Court Reports Annotated
The Lawyers Review

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