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Doctrine: Property relations for void

marriages(FC 147)
[G.R. No. 122749. July 31, 1996]
ANTONIO A. S. VALDES, petitioner, vs.
REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 102,
QUEZON CITY, and CONSUELO M.
GOMEZ-VALDES, respondents.
Facts: The petition for review bewails,
purely on a question of law, an alleged
error committed by the Regional Trial
Court in Civil Case No. Q-92-12539.
Petitioner avers that the court a quo has
failed to apply the correct law that should
govern the disposition of a family dwelling
in a situation where a marriage is declared
void ab initio because of psychological
incapacity on the part of either or both of
the parties to the contract.
Antonio Valdes and Consuelo Gomez were
married on January 5, 1971. They begot 5
children. In 1992, Valdez filed a petition for
declaration of nullity of their marriage on
the ground of psychological incapacity.
The trial court granted the petition,
thereby declaring their marriage null and
void. It also directed the parties to start
proceedings on the liquidation of their
common properties as defined by Article
147 of the Family Code, and to comply
with the provisions of Articles 50, 51 and
52 of the same code. Gomez sought a
clarification of that portion in the decision.
She asserted that the Family Code
contained no provisions on the procedure
for the liquidation of common property in
"unions without marriage. In an Order,
the trial court made the following
clarification: "Consequently, considering
that Article 147 of the Family Code
explicitly provides that the property
acquired by both parties during their
union, in the absence of proof to the
contrary, are presumed to have been
obtained through the joint efforts of the
parties and will be owned by them in
equal shares, plaintiff and defendant will
own their 'family home' and all their other
properties for that matter in equal shares.
In the liquidation and partition of the
properties owned in common by the
plaintiff and defendant, the provisions on
co-ownership found in the Civil Code shall

apply." Valdes moved for reconsideration


of the Order which was denied. Valdes
appealed.
Issue: Whether or not Article 147 of the
Family Code does not apply to cases
where the parties are psychologically
incapacitated.
Held: No. In a void marriage, regardless of
the cause thereof, the property relations
of the parties during the period of
cohabitation is governed by the provisions
of Article 147 or Article 148, such as the
case may be, of the Family Code. Article
147 is a remake of Article 144 of the Civil
Code as interpreted and so applied in
previous cases. This peculiar kind of coownership applies when a man and a
woman, suffering no legal impediment to
marry each other, so exclusively live
together as husband and wife under a void
marriage or without the benefit of
marriage. The term "capacitated" in the
provision (in the first paragraph of the law)
refers to the legal capacity of a party to
contract marriage, i.e., any "male or
female of the age of eighteen years or
upwards not under any of the
impediments mentioned in Articles 37 and
38 of the Code.

SUSAN NICDAO CARIO, petitioner,


vs. SUSAN YEE CARIO, respondent.
G.R. No. 132529. February 2, 2001
FACTS
During the lifetime of the late SPO4
Santiago S. Cario, he contracted two
marriages, the 7rst was on June 20, 1969,
with petitioner Susan Nicdao Cario, with
whom he had two offsprings, namely,
Sahlee and Sandee Cario; and the second
was on November 10, 1992, with
respondent Susan Yee Cario, with whom
he had no children in their almost ten year
cohabitation starting way back in 1982. He
passed away on November 23, 1992 under
the care of Susan Yee who spent for his
burial and medical expenses. Susan

Nicdao was able collect a total of P146,


000.00 from "MBAI, PCCUI, Commutation,
NAPOLCOM, and Pag-ibig," 3 while
respondent Susan Yee received a total of
P21, 000.00 from "GSIS Life, Burial (GSIS)
and burial (SSS)."
On December 14, 1993,
respondent Susan Yee filed the instant
case for collection of sum of money
against petitioner Susan Nicdao praying,
inter alia, that petitioner be ordered to
return to her at least one-half of the
death benefits claimed by the petitioner.
The trial court rendered decision in favor
of respondent.
ISSUE
Whether or not respondent is entitled to
the death benefits
RULING
No. The law in force when the
marriage of petitioner Susan Nicdao and
the deceased was solemnized in 1969 was
the Civil Code wherein a valid marriage
license is a requisite of marriage, and the
absence thereof, subject to certain
exceptions, renders the marriage void ab
initio. In the case at bar, it was proved
that the petitioners marriage with the
deceased was solemnized without a
marriage license, thus, void ab initio.
However, it does not follow from the
foregoing disquisition that since the
marriage of petitioner and the deceased is
declared void ab initio, the "death
benefits" under scrutiny would now be
awarded to respondent Susan Yee.
Accordingly, the declaration in the instant
case of nullity of the previous marriage of
the deceased and petitioner Susan Nicdao
does not validate the second marriage of
the deceased with respondent Susan Yee.
The fact remains that their marriage was
solemnized without first obtaining a
judicial decree declaring the marriage of
petitioner Susan Nicdao and the deceased
void. Hence, the marriage of respondent

Susan Yee and the deceased is, likewise,


void ab initio. Considering that the second
marriage was bigamous having been
solemnized without having the first
marriage terminated, the application of
Article 148 of the Family Code is in order.
The disputed death benefits are clearly
remunerations, incentives and benefits
from governmental agencies earned by
the deceased as a police officer, hence,
they are not owned in common by
respondent and the deceased, but belong
to the deceased alone and respondent has
no right whatsoever to claim the same. By
intestate succession, the said "death
benefits" of the deceased shall pass to his
legal heirs. And, respondent, not being the
legal wife of the deceased is not one of
them.
NOEL BUENAVENTURA, petitioner, vs.
COURT OF APPEALS and ISABEL LUCIA
SINGH BUENAVENTURA, respondents.
Doctrine: Separation of Properties/ Coownership
Nature of the case: The case at bar
involves a petition for the declaration of
nullity of marriage, which was filed by
petitioner Noel Buenaventura on July 12,
1992, on the ground of the alleged
psychological incapacity of his wife, Isabel
Singh Buenaventura. After respondent
filed her answer, petitioner, with leave of
court, amended his petition by stating
that both he and his wife were
psychologically incapacitated to
comply with the essential obligations of
marriage. In response, respondent filed an
amended answer denying the allegation
that she was psychologically
incapacitated.
Facts: Petitioner, Noel Buenaventura filed
a position for the declaration of nullity of
marriage on the ground that both he and
his wife were psychologically
incapacitated.
RTC declared the marriage void ab
initio; and ordered the liquidation
of the assets of the conjugal
partnership property;
RTC ordered petitioner a monthly
regular support in favor of his son

(P15,000), subject to modification


as the necessity arises; and
awarded the care and custody of
the minor (Javy Singh
Buenaventura) to the Respondent
mother; and lastly, authorizing the
wife to her maiden family name
Singh.
Petitioner appealed before the CA;
while the appeal was pending, the
CA, upon respondents motion
issued a resolution increasing
monthly support of the son to P20,
000.
The CA dismissal petitioner appeal
for lack of merit andaffirmed in to
the RTC decision. Petitioner motion
for reconsideration was denied.
Issue: WON co-ownership is applicable
to valid marriage?
Ruling: YES. The present case does not
involve the annulment of a bigamous
marriage, the provisions of Article 50 in
relation to Articles 41, 42 and 43 of the
Family Code, providing for the
dissolution of the absolute
community or conjugal partnership of
gains, as the case may be, do not apply.
Rather, the general rule applies, which
is that in case a marriage is declared
void ab initio, the property regime
applicable and to be liquidated,
partitioned and distributed is that of
equal co-ownership.
Since the properties ordered to be
distributed by the court a quo were found,
both by the trial court and the Court of
Appeals, to have been acquired during the
union of the parties, the same would be
covered by the co-ownership. No fruits of
a separate property of one of the parties
appear to have been included or involved
in said distribution. The liquidation,
partition and distribution of the properties
owned in common by the parties herein as
ordered by the court a quo should,
therefore, be sustained, but on the basis
of co-ownership and not of the regime of
conjugal partnership of gains.
WHEREFORE, the Decision of the Court
of Appeals dated October 8, 1996 and its
Resolution dated December 10, 1996
which are contested in the Petition for

Review (G.R. No. 127449), are hereby


MODIFIED, in that the award of moral and
exemplary damages, attorneys fees,
expenses of litigation and costs are
deleted. The order giving respondent onehalf of the retirement benefits of petitioner
from Far East Bank and Trust Co. and onehalf of petitioners shares of stock in Manila
Memorial Park and in the Provident Group
of Companies is sustained but on the basis
of the liquidation, partition and distribution
of the co-ownership and not of the regime
of conjugal partnership of gains. The rest
of said Decision and Resolution are
AFFIRMED.
The Petition for Review on Certiorari
(G.R. No. 127358) contesting the Court
of Appeals Resolutions of September 2,
1996 and November 13, 1996 which
increased the support pendente lite in
favor of the parties son, Javy Singh
Buenaventura, is now MOOT and
ACADEMIC and is, accordingly,
DISMISSED.
Notes:
When a marriage is declared void ab initio,
the law states that the final judgment
therein shall provide for the liquidation,
partition and distribution of the properties
of the spouses, the custody and support of
the common children and the delivery of
their presumptive legitimes, unless such
matters had been adjudicated in the
previous proceedings. In a void marriage,
regardless of the cause thereof, the
property relations of the parties during the
period of cohabitation is governed by the
provisions of Article 147 or Article 148,
such as the case may be, of the Family
Code.
ART. 147. When a man and a woman who
are capacitated to marry each other, live
exclusively with each other as husband
and wife without the benefit of marriage
or under a void marriage, their wages and
salaries shall be owned by them in equal
shares and the property acquired by both
of them through their work or industry
shall be governed by the rules on coownership.
Gonzales vs Gonzales
Doctrine: Co-ownership (Art. 147)

Facts: Marriage of Francisco and Erminda


Gonzales which was solemnized in Ermita,
Manila on Feb. 4, 1979 was declared void
ab initio on the ground of psychological
incapacity of the husband. The husband,
Francisco, was not satisfied with the
manner their properties were divided
without contesting the declaration of
nullity of their marriage. Appeal to the CA
affirmed the lower court and motion for
reconsideration was denied thus, the
instant petition for review on certiorari.
Issue: WON the properties should be
divided equally between the parties.
Ruling: YES. There are two instances when
the property relations between spouses
shall be governed by the rules on coownership. These are: (1) when a man and
woman capacitated to marry each other
live exclusively with each other as
husband and wife without the benefit of
marriage; and (2) when a man and
woman live together under a void
marriage. Under this property regime of
co-ownership, properties acquired by both
parties during their union, in the absence
of proof to the contrary, are presumed to
have been obtained through the joint
efforts of the parties and will be owned by
them in equal shares.
Article 147 creates a presumption that
properties acquired during the
cohabitation of the parties have been
acquired through their joint efforts,
work or industry and shall be owned by
them in equal shares. It further provides
that a party who did not participate in the
acquisition by the other party of any
property shall be deemed to have
contributed jointly in the acquisition
thereof if the formers efforts consisted in
the care and maintenance of the family
and of the household.
While it is true that all the properties were
bought from the proceeds of the pizza
business, petitioner himself testified that
respondent was not a plain housewife and
that she helped him in managing the
business.
WHEREFOR, the instant petition is hereby
DENIED. The assailed Decision and

Resolution of the Court of Appeals, in CAG.R. CV No. 66041, are AFFIRMED.


Agapay vs. Palang
Doctrine: Art. 148 of the FC
Facts: Miguel Palang contracted his
first marriage with Carlina in
Pangasinan on 1949. Miguel left to
work in Hawaii a few months after the
wedding. They only had one child born
on 1950. The trial court found evident
that as early as 1957, Miguel
attempted to divorce Carlina in
Hawaii. When he returned for good in
1972, he refused to live with Carlina
and stayed alone in a house in
Pozzorubio Pangasinan.
The 63-year-old Miguel contracted his
second marriage with 19-year-old
Erlinda Agapay, herein petitioner. Two
months earlier, they jointly purchased
a parcel of agricultural land located at
Binalonan Pangasinan issued under
their names. Allegedly, Erlinda also
purchased a house and lot in
Binalonan, where the property was
later issued in her name as the sole
vendee. Miguel and Carlina executed a
Deed of Donation, wherein they agreed
to donate their conjugal property
consisting of six parcels of land to their
only child, Herminia.
Miguel and Erlindas cohabitation
produced a son named Kristopher. In
1979, they were convicted of
concubinage upon Carlinas
complaint. Two years later, Miguel
died. Carlina and her daughter
instituted this case for recovery of
ownership and possession with
damages against petitioner. They
sought to get back the riceland and
the house and lot located at Binalonan
allegedly purchase by Miguel during
his cohabitation with petitioner.
RTC dismissed the complaint and
ordered the respondents to provide for
the intestate shares of the parties,
particularly of Erlinda's son. CA
reversed the trial court's decision.

Issue: WON the agricultural land and


house and lot from Miguels second
marriage be granted to Erlinda?
Ruling: NO!
SC held that the agricultural land and
house and lot couldnt be granted to
Erlinda. The sale of the riceland was
made in favor of Miguel and
Erlinda. The provision of law
applicable here is Article 148 of the
Family Code providing for cases of
cohabitation when a man and a
woman who are not capacitated to
marry each other live exclusively with
each other as husband and wife
without the benefit of marriage or
under a void marriage. While the
marriage of Miguel and Erlinda was
null and void because the earlier
marriage of Miguel and Carlina was
still subsisting and unaffected by the
latter's de facto separation.
Under Article 148, only the properties
acquired by both of the parties through
their actual
joint
contribution
of
money, property or industry shall be
owned by them in common in
proportion
to
their
respective
contributions. It must be stressed that
actual contribution is required by this
provision. If the actual contribution of
the party is not proved, there will be
no co-ownership and no presumption
of equal shares.
Erlinda established in her testimony
that she was engaged in the business
of buy and sell and had a sari-sari
store. However, she failed to persuade
the SC that she actually contributed
money to buy the riceland. When the
land was acquired, she was only
around 20 years old compared to
Miguel who was already 64 years old
and
a
pensioner
of
the
US
Government.
Considering
her
youthfulness, its unrealistic how she
could have contributed the P3,750 as
her share. Thus, the SC finds no basis
to justify the co-ownership with Miguel
over the same. Hence, the Riceland
should, as correctly held by CA, revert

to the conjugal partnership property of


the deceased and Carlina.
WHEREFORE, the instant petition
is hereby DENIED. The questioned
decision of the Court of Appeals is
AFFIRMED. Costs against
petitioner.
Notes: *Art. 87 of the FC. In cases
of cohabitation not falling under
the preceding Article, only the
properties acquired by both of the
parties through their actual joint
contribution of money, property,
or industry shall be owned by
them in common in proportion to
their respective contributions. In
the absence of proof to the
contrary, their contributions and
corresponding shares are
presumed to be equal. The same
rule and presumption shall apply
to joint deposits of money and
evidences of credit.
If one of the parties is validly
married to another, his or her
share in the co-ownership shall
accrue to the absolute community
or conjugal partnership existing in
such valid marriage. If the party
who acted in bad faith is not
validly married to another, his or
her shall be forfeited in the
manner provided in the last
paragraph of the preceding
Article.
The foregoing rules on forfeiture
shall likewise apply even if both
parties are in both faith. (144a)
Manila Surety & Fidelity Co., Inc.
vs Teodoro
Facts: Manila Sure secured on
September 20, 1961, from the Court of
First Instance of Manila a writ of
execution addressed to provincial
sheriff of Rizal whose deputy, together
with counsel for Manila Surety,
repaired to the residence of herein
Trinidad Teodoro and levied upon
properties [1]. As the Trinidad Teodoro
was then abroad, her sister Josefina
Teodoro, had made representations

regarding the ownership of the


petitioner over certain personal effects
levied upon, ignored and proceeded
with the levy. Manila Sure caused the
posting at several places notices of
sale, preparatory to disposing
Teodoro's properties at public auction.
Teodoro filed on November 3, 1961, a
complaint with injunction, praying
among other things, for damages and
a writ of preliminary injunction. On
November 9, 1961, respondent Manila
Surety filed an "Omnibus Motion to
Dismiss the Complaint and to Dissolve
Injunction" to which an opposition was
filed.
The lower court declared that the
properties in question are community
properties of Trinidad Teodoro and Jose
Corominas, Jr., dissolved on May 12,
1962, the writ of preliminary injunction
it had issued and dismissed the
complaint
Trinidad Teodoro appealed. The Manila
Surety filed on May 29, 1962 another
motion for the issuance of a third alias
writ of execution for the satisfaction of
the judgment debt. Issued on June 2,
1962. On June 7,1962, deputies of the
provincial sheriff of Rizal again
repaired to the residence of Teodoro
and levied upon the same properties
except some properties [2].
Trinidad Teodoro thereupon filed an
original petition for injunction in the
Court of Appeals to stop the scheduled
sale. On October 24, 1962 the said
Court rendered the decision now under
review, granting the writ prayed for
and permanently enjoining respondent
provincial sheriff of Rizal from selling
at public auction the properties in
question for the satisfaction of the
judgment debt of Jose Corominas, Jr.
The case for herein petitioner rests on
the proposition that the said
properties, claimed by respondent
Teodoro to be hers exclusively, pertain
to the co-ownership established
between her and Jose Corominas, Jr.,
pursuant to Article 144 of the Civil
Code.

Issue: WON the properties of Teodoro


be subject to levy
Ruling: NO
Article 144 of the Civil Code:
When a man and a woman live
together as husband and wife, but
they are not married, or their marriage
is void from the beginning, the
property acquired by either or both of
them through then work or industry or
their wages and salaries shall be
governed by the rules on coownership.
Jose Corominas, Jr. subsequent
marriage in Hongkong to Trinidad
Teodoro is bigamous and void.
While Article 144 speaks, inter alia, of
a void marriage without any
qualification, the Court of Appeals
declined to apply it in this case on two
grounds: (1) the subsisting marriage of
Corominas to Sonia Lizares constitutes
an impediment to a valid marriage
between him and respondent Trinidad
Teodoro, which impediment, according
to a number of decisions of the
Supreme Court, precludes the
establishment of a co-ownership under
said article, and (2) the funds used by
said respondent in acquiring the
properties in question were "fruits of
her paraphernal investments which
accrued before her marriage to
Corominas.
The particular properties involved here
which were admittedly acquired by
respondent Teodoro, cannot be
deemed to belong to such coownership because, as found by the
trial court and confirmed by the Court
of Appeals, the funds used in acquiring
said properties were fruits of
respondent's paraphernal investments
which accrued before her "marriage"
to Corominas. In other words they were
not acquired by either or both of the
partners in the void marriage through
their work or industry or their wages
and salaries, and hence cannot be the
subject of co-ownership under Article
144. They remain respondent's

exclusive properties, beyond the reach


of execution to satisfy the judgment
debt of Corominas.
Notes: 1. upon a car, some furniture,
appliances and personal properties
found therein belonging solely and
exclusively to the petitioner with the
exception of sewing machine which
belonged to a maid by the name of
Nati Fresco, a G.E. television set which
was the property of the minor Jose
Alfonso Corominas, and a baby grand
piano as well as a Columbia radio
phonograph which belonged to Jose
Corominas, Jr.
2., with the exception of the baby
grand piano and the "Columbia"
phonograph which were the properties
of Jose Corominas, Jr. and which had
already been sold at public auction
November 6, 1961 for P3,305.00, the
Regal sewing machine owned by Nati
Fresco, the beds found in the boy's and
girl's rooms, a marble dining table and
chairs, a stereophonic phonograph and
the G.E. television set. And on the
following day, June 8, 1962,
respondent provincial sheriff of Rizal
advertised the sale at public auction of
the aforementioned properties claimed
by herein petitioner, setting the date
thereof for June 16, 1962.
3 .Jose Corominas, Jr. was previously
married to Sonia Lizares in Iloilo on
January 5, 1935. On November
29,1954, a decree of divorce was
granted by the Court of the State of
Nevada dissolving the bonds of
matrimony between Sonia Lizares and
Jose Corominas, Jr (invalid divorce
decree but their conjugal partnership
was terminated)
Trinidad Teodoro met Jose Corominas,
Jr. in Hongkong on October 30, 1955. . .
. On March 26,1956, they went through
a Buddhist wedding ceremony in
Hongkong. (bigamous and void)
Juaniza Vs. Jose
Facts: Eugenio Jose was the registered
owner and operator of the passenger
jeepney involved in an accident of collision

with a freight train of the Philippine


National Railways that took place on
November 23, 1969 which resulted in the
death to seven (7) and physical injuries to
five (5) of its passengers.
At the time of the accident, Eugenio Jose
was legally married to Socorro Ramos but
had been cohabiting with defendantappellant, Rosalia Arroyo, for sixteen (16)
years in a relationship akin to that of
husband and wife.
CFI Laguna ordered defendants Eugenio
and Rosalia jointly and severally liable in
the 2 civil cases.
Rosalia filed for MR praying that the
decision be reconsidered insofar as it
condemns her to pay damages jointly
and severally with her co-defendant,
but was denied. CFI based her liability
on CC144.
Issue: WON CC 144 is applicable to parties
incapacitated to marry and in a commonlaw relationship
Ruling: NO. CC 144 requires that the man
and the woman living together must not in
any way be incapacitated to contract
marriage.
Since Eugenio Jose is legally married to
Socorro Ramos, there is an impediment for
him to contract marriage with Rosalia
Arroyo. Under the aforecited provision of
the Civil Code, Arroyo cannot be a coowner of the jeepney. The jeepney belongs
to the conjugal partnership of Jose and his
legal wife. There is therefore no basis for
the liability of Arroyo for damages arising
from the death of, and physical injuries
suffered by, the passengers of the jeepney
which figured in the collision.
Rosalia Arroyo, who is not the
registered owner of the jeepney can
neither be liable for damages caused
by its operation. It is settled in our
jurisprudence that only the registered
owner of a public service vehicle is
responsible for damages that may
arise from consequences incident to its
operation, or maybe caused to any of
the passengers therein.

WHEREFORE, in view of the


foregoing, Rosalia Arroyo is hereby
declared free from any liability for
damages and the appealed decision is
hereby modified accordingly. No costs.
Notes:
CC 144:
When a man and woman driving
together as husband and wife, but
they are not married, or their marriage
is void from the beginning, the
property acquired by either or both of
them through their work or industry or
their wages and salaries shall be
governed by the rules on coownership.
Belcodero Vs Ca
Facts: This case involves the question of
ownership over a piece of land acquired
by a husband while living with a paramour
and after having deserted his lawful wife
and children. The property had been
bought by the husband on installment
basis prior to the effectivity of the Civil
Code of 1950 but the final deed, as well as
the questioned conveyance by him to his
common law spouse, has ensued during
the latter Code's regime. Now, of course,
we have to likewise take note of the new
Family Code which took effect on 03
August 1988
The husband, Alayo Bosing was married
to Juliana Oday on July 27, 1927 which
with he had 3 children.
1946, he left the conjugal home and
cohabited with Josefa Rivera which he
had 1 child with.
In 1949 Alayo Bosing bought a parcel of
land and indicated in his civil status that
he was married with Josefa Rivera
Bosing.
He also authorized the that the lot be
transferred to Josefa; and so a certificate
title with the name of Josefa was issued.
June 1958, Alayo married Josefa not
withstanding the subsisting marriage
between Juliana.
Alayo died on March 11, 1967.
Josefa and her daughter executed an
extrajudicial partition which was

described as conjugal property between


Josefa and Alayo..
October 30, 1980, Julian the legitimate
wife filed an action for reconveyance for
the property.
The trial court ruled in favor of the
plaintiffs, and it ordered that
Josephine Bosing executed a deed of
reconveyance of the property in question
to the legal heirs of the deceased Alayo D.
Bosing, and that both defendants pay,
jointly and severally, actual damages by
way of attorney's fees and expenses in
litigation, TEN THOUSAND (P10,000.00)
PESOS as moral damages, pus TEN
THOUSAND (P10,000.00) PESOS
exemplary damages to prevent future
frauds.
The defendants went to the Court of
Appeals which affirmed the trial court's
order for reconveyance but reversed the
decision on the award for damages, thus

WHEREFORE, the judgment appealed from


is hereby AFFIRMED insofar as defendant
Josephine Bosing is ordered to execute a
deed of reconveyance of the property
granting the same to the legal heirs of the
deceased Alayo D. Bosing, and REVERSED
insofar as it awards actual, moral and
exemplary damages.
And thus the petition of certiorari on
this court.
Issue: 1. WON ERRED IN HOLDING THAT
THE ACTION FOR RECONVEYANCE HAD
LONG PRESCRIBED.
2. WON THE RESPONDENT COURT ERRED
IN FINDING THAT, THE ACTION FOR
RECONVEYANCE IS BASED UPON AN
IMPLIED OR CONSTRUCTIVE TRUST.
3. WON THE RESPONDENT COURT
ERRED IN HOLDING THAT, THE
PROPERTY IN QUESTION BELONGS
EXCLUSIVELY TO THE PETITIONERS.
Ruling: The property remained as
belonging to the conjugal partnership of
Alayo and his legitimate wife Juliana.

Under both the new Civil Code (Article


160) and the old Civil Code (Article 1407),
all property of the marriage is presumed
to belong to the conjugal partnership,
unless it be proved that it pertains
exclusively to the husband or to the wife.
This presumption has not been
convincingly rebutted.
It cannot be seriously contended that,
simply because the property was titled in
the name of Josefa at Alayos request, she
should thereby be deemed to be its owner.
The property unquestionably was acquired
by Alayo it was just transferred to Josefa.
The applicable prescriptive period for an
action seeking a reconveyance of the
property by the beneficiaries thereof is ten
(10) years (Article 1144, Civil Code).
Ordinarily, that period starts from the
establishment of the implied trust being
the day when the cause of action would be
considered to have accrued (Article 1150,
Civil Code). Unfortunately for Josefa and
Josephine, however, the property involved
in this case is a realty titled under the
Torrens System. The prescriptive period is
thus to be counted from the time the
transaction affecting the property is
registered with the corresponding
issuance of a new certificate of title.
Between the time Transfer of Certificate of
Title No. 198840 was issued on 06 June
1974, and the filing of the action for the
reconveyance of the property with the
court a quo on 30 October 1980, barely a
period of six (6) years and four (4) months
had elapsed. The case has accordingly
been initiated seasonably.
WHEREFORE, the decision appealed from
in the instant petition for review on
certiorari is AFFIRMED.
FRANCISCO VS. MASTER IRON
WORKS & CONSTRUCTION CORPS.
Facts: Josefina Castillo was only 24 years
old when she and Eduardo G. Francisco
were married on January 15, 1983.
Eduardo was then employed as Vice
President in a Private Corporation.

Josefina acquired two parcels of land


where Imus Bank executed a deed of
absolute sale in favor of Josefina, married
to Eduardo. An affidavit of waiver was
executed by Eduardo where he declared
that prior to his marriage with Josefina, the
latter purchased the land with her own
savings and that he waived whatever
claims he had over the property. When
Josefina mortgaged the property for a
loan, Eduardo affixed his marital
conformity to the deed.
In 1990, Eduardo who was then General
Manager and President of Reach Out
Trading International, bought 7,500 bags
of cement worth P768,750.00 from Master
Iron Works & Construction Corporation
(MIWCC). Failing to pay for it, MIWCC filed
a complaint against him and RTC rendered
judgment in favor of MIWCC. The Sheriff
issued a Notice of Levy on
Execution/Attachment over the two lots
mentioned to cover the balance of the
amount due.
Josefina filed an Affidavit of Third Party
Claim over the two parcels of land she also
filed a complaint against MIWCC and the
Sheriff. She alleged that her husband has
no claim over the two lots as evidenced by
the Affidavit of Waiver executed by her
husband.
But before Josefina could present her
evidences, she filed an annulment
case against Eduardo on the ground
that the latter is already married, and
that their marriage was declared null
and void for being bigamous.
Issue: Whether or not the subject
property is the conjugal property of
Josefina and Eduardo.
Ruling: The Court ruled that petitioner
failed to prove that she acquired the
property with her personal funds before
her cohabitation with Eduardo and that
she was the sole owner. The Deed of
Absolute Sale on record showed it was
issued after her marriage. Their case fall
under Article 148 and since they got
married before the Family Code, the
provision, pursuant to Art 256, can be
applied retroactively if it does not

prejudice vested rights. Petitioner likewise


failed that she had any vested right.
Where the parties are in a void
marriage due to a legal impediment
that invalidates such marriage, Art 148
should be applied. In the absence of
proof that the wife/husband has
actually contributed money, property,
or industry to the properties acquired
during such union the presumption of
co-ownership will not arise.
IN LIGHT OF ALL THE FOREGOING, the
petition is DENIED for lack of merit. The
Decision of the Court of Appeals reversing
the decision of the Regional Trial Court is
AFFIRMED. No pronouncement as to costs.

Atienza vs De Castro
Doctrine: Union without Marriage
Facts: Case timeline for better
appreciation:
1. 1983 Petitioner, then the
President and General Manager of
Enrico Shipping Corporation and
Eurasian Maritime Corporation,
hired the services of respondent
Yolanda U. De Castro as accountant
for the two corporations.
2. Their relationship became intimate
and despite petitioner being a
married man, they lived together
as common-law husband and wife;
2 children were born out of this
union.
3. Relationship turned sour after the
birth of 2nd child.
4. 1992 - Petitioner filed in the RTC of
Makati City a complaint against
Yolanda for the judicial partition
between them of a parcel of land
with improvements. Lupo alleged
that the subject property was
acquired during his union with
Yolanda as common-law husband
and wife, hence the property is coowned by them.

5. 2000 RTC rendered judgment


declaring contested property as
owned in common by petitioner
and respondent and ordered
partition in equal shares.
6. On appeal, CA reversed the RTC
decision. Hence, this petition.
Petitioners contentions:
1. Petitioner argues that pursuant to
Article 144 of the Civil Code, he
was in no way burdened to
prove that he contributed to the
acquisition of the subject property
because with or without the
contribution by either partner, he is
deemed a co-owner thereof, adding
that under Article 484 of Civil
Code, as long as the property was
acquired by either or both of them
during their extramarital union,
such property would be legally
owned by them in common and
governed by the rules on coownership, which apply in default
of contracts, or special provisions.
2. It is the petitioners posture that
the respondent, having no
financial capacity to acquire the
property in question, merely
manipulated the dollar bank
accounts of his two (2)
corporations to raise the amount
needed therefor.
Issue: WON the contested party is coowned by the petitioner and the
respondent.
It is not disputed that the parties herein
were not capacitated to marry each
other because petitioner Lupo Atienza
was validly married to another woman at
the time of his cohabitation with the
respondent. Their property regime,
therefore, is governed by Article 148 of
the Family Code, which applies to
bigamous marriages, adulterous
relationships, relationships in a state
of concubinage, relationships where
both man and woman are married to
other persons, and multiple alliances
of the same married man. Under this
regime, only the properties acquired by
both of the parties through their actual
joint contribution of money, property, or
industry shall be owned by them in

common in proportion to their respective


contributions. Proof of actual
contribution is required.
As regard to the petitioners contentions:
1. Although the adulterous
cohabitation of the parties
commenced in 1983, or way
before the effectivity of the Family
Code on August 3, 1998, Article
148 thereof applies because this
provision was intended
precisely to fill up the hiatus in
Article 144 of the Civil Code.
Before Article 148 of the Family
Code was enacted, there was no
provision governing property
relations of couples living in a state
of adultery or concubinage. Hence,
even if the cohabitation or the
acquisition of the property occurred
before the Family Code took effect,
Article 148 governs.
2. In making proof of his case, it is
paramount that the best and most
complete evidence be formally
entered. Rather than presenting
proof of his actual contribution to
the purchase money used as
consideration for the disputed
property, [Lupo] diverted the
burden imposed upon him to
[Yolanda] by painting her as a
shrewd and scheming woman
without the capacity to purchase
any property. Instead of proving
his ownership, or the extent
thereof, over the subject property,
[Lupo] relegated his complaint to a
mere attack on the financial
capacity of [Yolanda]. He
presented documents pertaining to
the ins and outs of the dollar
accounts of ENRICO and EURASIAN,
which unfortunately failed to
prove his actual contribution in
the purchase of the said
property.
In contrast to petitioners dismal failure
to prove his cause, herein respondent
was able to present preponderant
evidence of her sole ownership. There
can clearly be no co-ownership when,
as here, the respondent sufficiently

established that she derived the


funds used to purchase the property
from her earnings, not only as an
accountant but also as a
businesswoman engaged in foreign
currency trading, money lending and
jewelry retail. She presented her
clientele and the promissory notes
evincing substantial dealings with her
clients. She also presented her bank
account statements and bank
transactions, which reflect that she
had the financial capacity to pay the
purchase price of the subject property.
WHEREFORE, the instant petition is
DENIED and the assailed issuances of
the CA are AFFIRMED.
Notes:
Family Code of the Philippines
Article 148. In cases of cohabitation not
falling under the preceding Article, only
the properties acquired by both of the
parties
through
their
actual
joint
contribution of money, property, or
industry shall be owned by them in
common in proportion to their respective
contributions. In the absence of proof to
the contrary, their contributions and
corresponding shares are presumed to be
equal. The same rule and presumption
shall apply to joint deposits of money and
evidences of credit.
If one of the parties is validly married to
another, his or her share in the coownership shall accrue to the absolute
community
or
conjugal
partnership
existing in such valid marriage. If the party
who acted in bad faith is not validly
married to another, his or her share shall
be forfeited in the manner provided in the
last paragraph of the preceding Article.
The foregoing rules on forfeiture shall
likewise apply even if both parties are
in bad faith.
Joaquino vs Reyes
Facts: Lourdes Reyes was legally
married to Rodolfo Reyes on January 3,
1947 in Manila. They have four
children, namely: Mercedes, Manuel,
Miriam and Rodolfo Jr., all surnamed

Reyes. Rodolfo Reyes died on


September 12, 1981. At the time of his
death, Rodolfo Reyes was living with
his common-law wife, Milagros
Joaquino, with whom she begot three
(3) children.
During his lifetime, Rodolfo Reyes
worked with Marsman and Company
and later transferred to Warner Barnes
& Co., where he assumed the position
of Vice-President [Comptroller] until he
retired on September 30, 1980. His
monthly salary at Warner Barnes & Co.
was P15,000.00 and upon his
separation or retirement from said
company, Rodolfo Reyes received a
lump sum of P315,011.79.

During the common-law relationship


of Rodolfo Reyes and Milagros Joaquino
and while living together, they decided
to buy the house and lot situated at
No. 12 Baghdad Street, Phase 3, BF
Homes, Paraaque, Metro Manila. A
Deed of Absolute Sale dated July 12,
1979 was executed in favor of Milagros
Joaquino and Transfer Certificate of
Title No. S-90293 covering the said
property was issued in the name of
petitioner only on July 20, 1979.
To secure the finances with which to
pay the purchase price of the property
in the amount of P140,000.00, Milagros
Joaquino executed on July 20, 1979, a
Special Power of Attorney in favor of
Rodolfo A. Reyes for the latter, as
attorney-in-fact, to secure a loan from
the Commonwealth Insurance
Company. An application for mortgage
loan was filed by Rodolfo Reyes with
the Commonwealth Insurance
Company and a Real Estate Mortgage
Contract was executed as collateral to
the mortgage loan. The loan was
payable in ten (10) years with a
monthly amortization of P1,166.67.
The monthly amortizations were paid
by Rodolfo Reyes and after his death,
the balance of P109,797.64 was paid in
full to the Commonwealth Insurance by
the Philam Life Insurance Co. as

insurer of the deceased Rodolfo A.


Reyes.
In the complaint, it alleges that the
deceased had two cars in petitioners
possession and that the real and
personal properties in petitioners
possession are conjugal partnership
properties of the spouses Lourdes P.
Reyes and Rodolfo A. Reyes and onehalf belongs exclusively to respondent
Lourdes P. Reyes and the other half to
the estate of Rodolfo A. Reyes to be
apportioned among the other
respondents as his forced heirs.
Respondents therefore, pray that the
property covered by T.C.T. No. 90293
be declared conjugal property of the
spouses Lourdes P. Reyes and Rodolfo
A. Reyes and that petitioner be ordered
to reconvey the property in
respondents favor; that the two cars
in petitioners possession be delivered
to respondents and that petitioner be
made to pay actual, compensatory and
moral damages to respondents as well
as attorneys fees.
Milagros B. Joaquino alleges that she
purchased the real property in
question with her own exclusive funds
and it was only for convenience that
the late Rodolfo Reyes facilitated the
mortgage over the same; that
although the late Rodolfo Reyes paid
the monthly amortization of the
mortgage as attorney-in-fact of
petitioner, the money came exclusively
from her.
RTC ruled in favor of the lawful wife
Lourdes Reyes and her children and
co-respondents in this case.
Affirming the RTC, the CA held that
the property had been paid out of the
conjugal funds of Rodolfo and Lourdes
because the monthly amortizations for
the loan, as well as the premiums for
the life insurance policy that paid for
the balance thereof, came from his
salaries and earnings. Like the trial
court, it found no sufficient proof that
petitioner was financially capable of
buying the disputed property, or that
she had actually contributed her own

exclusive funds to pay for it. Hence, it


ordered her to surrender possession of
the property to the respective estates
of the spouses.
Issue: Whether or not the house and lot at
Baghdad Street are conjugal property of
lawfully wedded Rodolfo and Lourdes
including the insurance proceeds which
was used to pay the final bill for the house
and lot?
Ruling: It is undisputed that the
deceased Rodolfo Reyes was legally
married to Respondent Lourdes Reyes on
January 3, 1947. While their marriage was
subsisting, he was actually living with
petitioner. It was during this time, in 1979,
that the disputed house and lot was
purchased and registered in petitioners
name.
The applicable law is the Civil Code of
the Philippines. Under Article 145 thereof,
a conjugal partnership of gains (CPG) is
created upon marriage and lasts until the
legal union is dissolved by death,
annulment, legal separation or judicial
separation of property. Conjugal properties
are by law owned in common by the
husband and wife.
Under Article 160 of the Code, all
properties of the marriage, unless proven
to pertain to the husband or the wife
exclusively, are presumed to belong to the
CPG.
On the other hand, Article 144 of the
Civil Code mandates a co-ownership
between a man and a woman who are
living together but are not legally married.
Prevailing jurisprudence holds, though,
that for Article 144 to apply, the couple
must not be incapacitated to contract
marriage.
It has been held that the Article is
inapplicable to common-law relations
amounting to adultery or concubinage, as
in this case. The reason therefor is the
absurdity of creating a co-ownership in
cases in which there exists a prior
conjugal partnership between the man
and his lawful wife.In default of Article 144
of the Civil Code, Article 148 of the Family
Code has been applied.
When a common-law couple have a
legal impediment to marriage, only the

property acquired by them -- through their


actual joint contribution of money,
property or industry -- shall be owned by
them in common and in proportion to their
respective contributions.
A preponderance of evidence has duly
established that the disputed house and
lot was paid by Rodolfo Reyes, using his
salaries and earnings. Respondents have
shown that the property was bought
during the marriage of Rodolfo and
Lourdes, a fact that gives rise to the
presumption that it is conjugal. They have
established that the proceeds of the loan
obtained by Rodolfo were used to pay for
the property; and that the loan was, in
turn, paid from his salaries and earnings,
which were conjugal funds under the Civil
Code.
In contrast, petitioner has failed to
substantiate either of her claims -- that
she was financially capable of buying the
house and lot, or that she actually
contributed to the payments therefor.
Under the circumstances, therefore, the
purchase and the subsequent registration
of the realty in petitioners name was
tantamount to a donation by Rodolfo to
Milagros. By express provision of Article
739(1) of the Civil Code, such donation
was void, because it was "made between
persons who were guilty of adultery or
concubinage at the time of the donation
The prohibition against donations
between spouses must likewise apply to
donations between persons living together
in illicit relations; otherwise, the latter
would be better situated than the former
Regarding the registration of the
property in petitioners name, it is
enough to stress that a certificate of
title under the Torrens system aims to
protect dominion; it cannot be used as
an instrument for the deprivation of
ownership. The registration of the
property in petitioners name was
clearly designed to deprive Rodolfos
legal spouse and compulsory heirs of
ownership.
WHEREFORE, the Petition is hereby
DENIED, and the assailed Decision
and Resolution of the Court of Appeals
is AFFIRMED.
Costs against petitioner

SO ORDERED.
Notes
Though registered in the paramours
name, property acquired with the
salaries and earnings of a husband
belongs to his conjugal partnership
with the legal spouse. The filiation of
the paramours children must be
settled in a probate or special
proceeding instituted for the purpose,
not in an action for recovery of
property. - Justice Panganiban

Article 153 of the Code:


(1) That which is acquired by onerous
title during the marriage at the
expense of the common fund, whether
the acquisition be for the partnership,
or for only one of the spouses;
(2) That which is obtained by the
industry, or work, or as salary of the
spouses, or of either of them;
(3) The fruits, rents or interests
received or due during the marriage,
coming from the common property or
from the exclusive property of each
spouse.

"Art. 148. In cases of cohabitation not


falling under the preceding Article,
only the properties acquired by both of
the parties through their actual joint
contribution of money, property, or
industry shall be owned by them in
common in proportion to their
respective contributions. In the
absence of proof to the contrary, their
contributions and corresponding
shares are presumed to be equal. The
same rule and presumption shall apply
to joint deposits of money and
evidence of credit.
"If one of the parties is validly married
to another, his or her share in the coownership shall accrue to the absolute
community or conjugal partnership
existing in such valid marriage. If the

party which acted in bad faith is not


validly married to another, his or her
share shall be forfeited in the manner
provided in the last paragraph of the
preceding Article.
"The foregoing rules on forfeiture shall
likewise apply even if both parties are
in bad faith.

"Art. 87. Every donation or grant of


gratuitous advantage, direct or
indirect, between the spouses during
the marriage shall be void, except
moderate gifts which the spouses may
give each other on the occasion of any
family rejoicing. The prohibition shall
also apply to persons living together as
husband and wife without a valid
marriage."
GUILLERMA TUMLOS, petitioner,
vs
SPOUSES MARIO FERNANDEZ and
LOURDES FERNANDEZ, respondents.
Doctrine: SEPARATION OF
PROPERTY(Group 12)
Facts: Spouses Mario and Lourdes
Fernandez filed an ejection suit against
Guillerma, Toto and Gina Tumlos. In their
complaint, said spouse alleged that they
are the absolute owners of an apartment
building. Through tolerance, said spouse
allowed the Tumlos to occupy the
apartment building for the last seven (7)
years, since 1989, without the payment of
any rent.
It was agreed upon that after a few
months, defendant Guillerma Tumlos will
pay P1,600.00 a month while Toto and
Gina promised to pay P1,000.00 a month,
both as rental, which agreement was not
complied with. They then prayed that the
defendants be ordered to vacate the
property in question and to pay the stated
unpaid rentals, as well as to jointly pay
P30,000.00 in attorneys fees.

Guillerma Tumlos averred that the


Fernandez spouses had no cause of action
against her, since she is a co-owner of the
subject premises as evidenced by a
Contract to Sell wherein it was stated that
she is a co-vendee of the property in
question together with Mario Fernandez.
She then asked for the dismissal of the
complaint.
Upon appeal on the RTC, it was
found out that Guillerma Tumlos and Mario
Fernandez had an amorous relationship
and had acquired said subject property. It
was further alleged that they lived
together in the said apartment building
with their two (2) children for around ten
(10) years. Guillerma administered the
property by collecting rentals from the
lessees of the other apartments, until she
discovered that Mario deceived her as to
the annulment of his marriage with
Lourdes.
RTC ruled that the property was
acquired during Guillerma and Marios
cohabitation as husband and wife,
although without the benefit of marriage.
From such findings, the court concluded
that Guillerma Tumlos was a co-owner of
the subject property and could not be
ejected therefrom.
Court of Appeals reversed the decision of
RTC, rejecting the claim that Guillerma and
Mario are co-owner of said property. CA
finds no proof of actual contribution by
Guillerma Tumlos in the purchase of the
subject property was presented pursuant
to Article 148 of the Family Code.

as readily admitted by Guillerma, she


cohabited with Mario in a state of
concubinage.
In this case, petitioner fails to
present any evidence that she had made
an actual contribution to purchase the
subject property. Indeed, she anchors her
claim of co-ownership merely on her
cohabitation
with
Respondent
Mario
Fernandez.
Likewise, her claim of having
administered the property during the
cohabitation is unsubstantiated. In any
event, this fact by itself does not justify
her claim, for nothing in Article 148 of the
Family
Code
provides
that
the
administration of the property amounts to
a contribution in its acquisition.
Clearly, there is no basis for petitioners
claim of co-ownership.
The property in question belongs to
the conjugal partnership of respondents.
WHEREFORE
The Petition is DENIED and the appealed
Decision AFFIRMED. Costs against
petitioner.

Doctrine: Separation of Property


Title: ABING vs WAEYAN
G.R. No. 146294
Date: July 31, 2006

Issue: W/N Guillerma Tumlos, a commonlaw wife of Mario Fernandez, is a co-owner


of said apartment

Ponente: GARCIA, J.

Held: No, Guillerma Tumlos is not a


co-owner. Based on evidence presented
by respondents, it is clear that Mario
Fernandez was incapacitated to marry
petitioner because he was legally married
to Lourdes Fernandez. It is also clear that,

Nature of the case: An appeal by way


of a petition for review.

JOHN ABING, petitioner


WAEYAN, respondent

FACTS

JULIET

In 1986, John Abing and Juliet Waeyan


cohabited as husband and wife without
the benefit of marriage. Together, they
bought a 2-storey residential house. In
December 1991, Juliet left for Korea
and worked thereat, sending money to
John which the latter deposited in their
joint account. In 1992, their house was
renovated and to it was annex a
structure which housed a sari-sari
store. In 1994, Juliet returned.

Art. 147. When a man and a woman


who are capacitated to marry each
other, live exclusively with each other
as husband and wife without the
benefit of marriage or under a void
marriage, their wages and salaries
shall be owned by them in equal
shares and the property acquired by
both of them through their work or
industry shall be governed by the rules
on co-ownership.

In 1995, they decided to partition their


properties as their relationship soured.
They executed a Memorandum of
Agreement. Unfortunately, the
document was left unsigned by the
parties although signed by the
witnesses thereto. Under their
unsigned agreement, John shall leave
the dwelling with Juliet paying him the
amount of P428,870.00 representing
John's share in all their properties.
Juliet paid John the sum of P232,397.66
by way of partial payment of his share,
with the balance of P196,472.34 to be
paid by Juliet in twelve monthly
installment.

In the absence of proof to the contrary,


properties acquired while they lived
together shall be presumed to have
been obtained by their joint efforts,
work or industry, and shall be owned
by them in equal shares. For purposes
of this Article, a party who did not
participate in the acquisition by other
party of any property shall be deemed
to have contributed jointly in the
acquisition thereof if the former's
efforts consisted in the care and
maintenance of the family and of the
household.

Juliet, however, failed to make good


the balance. John demanded Juliet to
vacate the annex structure. Juliet
refused, prompting John to file an
ejectment suit against her. John
alleged that he alone spent for the
construction of the annex structure
with his own funds and thru the money
he borrowed from his relatives. He
added that the tax declaration for the
structure was under his name.

The law is clear. In the absence of


proofs to the contrary, any property
acquired by common-law spouses
during their period of cohabitation is
presumed to have been obtained thru
their joint efforts and is owned by
them in equal shares. Their property
relationship is governed by the rules
on co-ownership. And under this
regime, they owned their properties in
common "in equal shares."

ISSUE/S

Being herself a co-owner, Juliet may


not be ejected from the structure in
question. She is as much entitled to
enjoy its possession and ownership as
John. Juliet's failure to pay John the
balance of the latter's share in their
common properties could at best give
rise to an action for a sum of money
against Juliet, or for rescission of the
said agreement and not for ejectment.

Does John exclusively own the property


subject of the suit?
RATIO
No. Other than John's bare allegation
that he alone, thru his own funds and
money he borrowed from his relatives,
spent for the construction of the annex
structure, evidence is wanting to
support such naked claim.

WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED


and the assailed CA Decision is
AFFIRMED, except that portion thereof
denying effect to the parties'
Memorandum of Agreement for being
unsigned by both.