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Republic of the Philippines entitled to the possession of the

SUPREME COURT same;


Manila
(2) That the defendants are entitled
EN BANC to hold the position of the residential
lot until after they are paid the actual
G.R. No. L-175 April 30, 1946 market value of their houses and
granaries erected thereon, unless
DAMIAN IGNACIO, FRANCISCO IGNACIO the plaintiffs prefer to sell them said
and LUIS IGNACIO, petitioners, residential lot, in which case
vs. defendants shall pay the plaintiffs
ELIAS HILARIO and his wife DIONISIA the proportionate value of said
DRES, and FELIPE NATIVIDAD, Judge of residential lot taking as a basis the
First Instance of price paid for the whole land
Pangasinan, respondents. according to Exhibit B; and

Leoncio R. Esliza for petitioners. (3) That upon defendant's failure to


Mauricio M. Monta for respondents. purchase the residential lot in
question, said defendants shall
MORAN, C.J.: remove their houses and granaries
after this decision becomes final and
This is a petition for certiorari arising from a within the period of sixty (60) days
case in the Court of First Instance of from the date that the court is
Pangasinan between the herein informed in writing of the attitude of
respondents Elias Hilario and his wife the parties in this respect.
Dionisia Dres as plaintiffs, and the herein
petitioners Damian, Francisco and Luis, No pronouncement is made as to
surnamed Ignacio, as defendants, damages and costs.
concerning the ownership of a parcel of
land, partly rice-land and partly residential. Once this decision becomes final,
After the trial of the case, the lower court, the plaintiffs and defendants may
presided over by Hon. Alfonso Felix, appear again before this court for
rendered judgment holding plaintiffs as the the purpose of determining their
legal owners of the whole property but respective rights under article 361 of
conceding to defendants the ownership of the Civil Code, if they cannot come
the houses and granaries built by them on to an extra-judicial settlement with
the residential portion with the rights of a regard to said rights.
possessor in good faith, in accordance with
article 361 of the Civil Code. The dispositive Subsequently, in a motion filed in the same
part of the decision, hub of this controversy, Court of First Instance but now presided
follows: over by the herein respondent Judge Hon.
Felipe Natividad, the plaintiffs prayed for an
Wherefore, judgment is hereby order of execution alleging that since they
rendered declaring: chose neither to pay defendants for the
buildings nor to sell to them the residential
(1) That the plaintiffs are the owners lot, said defendants should be ordered to
of the whole property described in remove the structure at their own expense
transfer certificate of title No. 12872 and to restore plaintiffs in the possession of
(Exhibit A) issued in their name, and said lot. Defendants objected to this motion
which, after hearing, was granted by Judge
Natividad. Hence, this petition by his land to the owner of the building. But he
defendants praying for (a) a restraint and cannot, as respondents here did, refuse
annulment of the order of execution issued both to pay for the building and to sell the
by Judge Natividad; (b) an order to compel land and compel the owner of the building to
plaintiffs to pay them the sum of P2,000 for remove it from the land where it is erected.
the buildings, or sell to them the residential He is entitled to such remotion only when,
lot for P45; or (c), a rehearing of the case after having chosen to sell his land, the
for a determination of the rights of the other party fails to pay for the same. But this
parties upon failure of extra-judicial is not the case before us.
settlement.
We hold, therefore, that the order of Judge
The judgment rendered by Judge Felix is Natividad compelling defendants-petitioners
founded on articles 361 and 453 of the Civil to remove their buildings from the land
Code which are as follows: belonging to plaintiffs-respondents only
because the latter chose neither to pay for
ART. 361. The owner of land on such buildings not to sell the land, is null
which anything has been built, sown and void, for it amends substantially the
or planted in good faith, shall have judgment sought to be executed and is,
the right to appropriate as his own furthermore, offensive to articles 361 and
the work, sowing or planting, after 453 of the Civil Code.
the payment of the indemnity stated
in articles 453 and 454, or to oblige There is, however, in the decision of Judge
the one who built or planted to pay Felix a question of procedure which calls for
the price of the land, and the one the clarification, to avoid uncertainty and
who sowed, the proper rent. delay in the disposition of cases. In that
decision, the rights of both parties are well
ART. 453. Necessary expenses defined under articles 361 and 453 of the
shall be refunded to every Civil Code, but it fails to determine the value
possessor; but only the possessor in of the buildings and of the lot where they
good faith may retain the thing until are erected as well as the periods of time
such expenses are made good to within which the option may be exercised
him. and payment should be made, these
particulars having been left for
Useful expenses shall be refunded determination apparently after the judgment
to the possessor in good faith with has become final. This procedure is
the same right of retention, the erroneous, for after the judgment has
person who has defeated him in the become final, no additions can be made
possession having the option of thereto and nothing can be done therewith
refunding the amount of the except its execution. And execution cannot
expenses or paying the increase in be had, the sheriff being ignorant as to how,
value which the thing may have for how much, and within what time may the
acquired in consequence thereof. option be exercised, and certainly no
authority is vested in him to settle these
The owner of the building erected in good matters which involve exercise of judicial
faith on a land owned by another, is entitled discretion. Thus the judgment rendered by
to retain the possession of the land until he Judge Felix has never become final, it
is paid the value of his building, under having left matters to be settled for its
article 453. The owner of the land, upon the completion in a subsequent proceeding,
other hand, has the option, under article matters which remained unsettled up to the
361, either to pay for the building or to sell time the petition is filed in the instant case.
For all the foregoing, the writ of execution P45.00 while the value of the buildings
issued by Judge Natividad is hereby set erected was P2,000.00.
aside and the lower court ordered to hold a However, Hilario refused to avail of his
hearing in the principal case wherein it must options. Instead, he filed a motion in court to
determine the prices of the buildings and of have Ignacio be ejected and have them
the residential lot where they are erected, destroy the buildings he erected. Judge
as well as the period of time within which Felipe Natividad (he replaced Judge Felix),
the plaintiffs-respondents may exercise their granted Hilario’s motion.
option either to pay for the buildings or to
sell their land, and, in the last instance, the ISSUE: Whether or not Hilario, the owner in
period of time within which the defendants- good faith, may eject a builder in good faith
petitioners may pay for the land, all these without choosing either to appropriate the
periods to be counted from the date the building for himself after payment of its
judgment becomes executory or value or to sell his land to the builder in
unappealable. After such hearing, the court good faith.
shall render a final judgment according to HELD: No. The owner in good faith has
the evidence presented by the parties. to make a choice. He cannot dispense the
options under the law and then eject the
The costs shall be paid by plaintiffs- builder in good faith. This is because both
respondents. are in good faith.
But when can the owner in good faith
Ozaeta, Paras, Jaranilla, Feria, De Joya, compel the builder in good faith to remove
Pablo, Perfecto, Hilado, Bengz the building he erected?
This is only available if after the owner in
good faith chose to sell his land to the
76 Phil 605 – Civil Law – Property – builder in good faith and the latter fails to
Accession Industrial – Builder in Good pay the value of the land within the agree
Faith; Owner in Good Faith period. Only then can the owner in good
Sometime during the 1940s in Pangasinan, faith compel the builder in good faith to
a civil suit arose between Damian Ignacio remove the building he erected.
and Elias Hilario. Hilario was the owner of a
parcel of land. He later discovered that
Ignacio built some buildings therein (a
granary and a house). After trial, Judge
Antonio Felix of the Court of First Instance
of Pangasinan ruled that both were in good
faith (Hilario was the owner in good faith
while Ignacio was the builder in good faith).
Judge Felix then spelled out the rights of the
parties to wit:
a.) Ignacio can retain possession over the
buildings he erected until after he is paid by
Hilario for the value of the buildings he
erected;
b.) Hilario can choose to buy the said
buildings or he can choose to sell Ignacio
his land since the value of his land was only