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AFP MUTUAL BENEFIT V CA

Investco, Inc. was the owner of six (6) parcels of raw land, located in Quezon City and
Marikina

Investco, Inc. agreed to sell the six (6) parcels of land to Solid Homes

However, after paying the amount of P2,042,215.00 corresponding to the


downpayment, and the amount of P4,084,430.00 representing the first four (4) semi-
annual installments and a portion of the fifth installment, Solid Homes made no further
payment to Investco, Inc. after February 19, 1981. The postdated checks issued by
Solid homes to Investco, Inc. intended for the remaining installments were dishonored,
leaving a balance of P4,300,282.91 due under the contract in Investco, Inc.s favor.

Solid Homes filed with the Register of Deeds of Marikina a notice of lis pendens with
reference to Civil Case No. 40615 requesting that the same be annotated on the titles in
Investco, Inc.s name. On the same date, the notice of lis pendens was recorded as
Entry No. 117191 of the primary Entry Book, Volume 14 of the Office of the Register of
Deeds of Marikina, Metro Manila.

However, the notice of lis pendens was not actually annotated on the titles in the name
of Investco, Inc.

trial court rendered judgment in favor of Investco, Inc. ordering solid Homes to pay

trial court ordered the original record transmitted to the appellate court in view of Solid
Homes filing of a notice of appeal.

Investco, Inc. offered to sell the property to AFP Mutual Benefit Association, Inc. for
P27,079,767.00, subsequently reduced to P24,000,000.00, payable in installments.
Investco, Inc. furnished AFP MBAI with certified true copies of the titles covering the
Marikina property.

AFP MBAI verified the titles with the Register of Deeds of Marikina, Metro Manila and
found that copies of the titles that Investco, Inc. gave were genuine and faithful
reproductions of the original titles on file with the Register of Deeds. AFP MBAI noted
that there were no liens or encumbrances annotated on the titles.

Investco, Inc. executed a "Deed of Absolute Sale" conveying the property to AFP MBAI
for the price of P24,000,000.00, payable in installments until October 10, 1985. [9] Among
other terms, Investco, Inc. warranted to AFP MBAI that "it has good and valid title over
the properties subject of (the) sale and (that it ) shall hold (AFP MBAI) free from any
adverse claim of whatever nature and from liens an encumbrances of third parties.

FP MBAI also obtained a certification from the Clerk of the Metropolitan Trial Court of
Marikina that Investco, Inc. "has no pending case before (that) court.
AFP MBAI completed its payments of the purchase price.

The titles issued were "clean" and contained no annotation of any lien, encumbrance, or
adverse claim by a third party.

Solid Homes commenced action[13] before the Regional Trial Court, Marikina, against the
Register of Deeds, AFP MBAI and Investco, Inc. for "annotation of lis pendens and
damages" with temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction. In its verified
complaint, Solid Homes prayed that (a) the Register of Deeds be ordered to annotate
on the titles registered in the name of Investco, Inc. the notice of lis pendens dated
September 19, 1984 in relation to civil Case No. 40615, and to carry over the same to
the titles in the name of AFP MBAI; (b) alternatively, to declare AFP MBAI as a buyer in
bad faith

RULING:
Investcos complaint was an action for collection of sums of money, damages and
attorneys fees[33] to recover from Solid Homes unpaid installments on the purchase price
of the subject property. To emphasize, the case was an action for collection of
unpaid installments on the purchase price subject real property. In such case, the
annotation of a notice of lis pendens on the titles of the property was not proper as the
action was in personam.[34]

"Lis pendens is a Latin term which literally means a pending suit or a pending
litigation while a notice of lis pendens is an announcement to the whole world
that a particular real property is in litigation, serving as a warning that one who
acquires an interest over the said property does so at his own risk, or that he
gambles on the result of the litigation over the said property. It is but a signal
to the intending buyer or mortgagee to take care or beware and to investigate
the prospect or non-prospect of the litigation succeeding before he forks down
his money." [21]

A notice of lis pendens is not and can not be sought as a principal action for
relief. "The notice is but an incident to an action, an extra-judicial one to be
sure. It does not affect the merits thereof. It is intended merely to
constructively advise, or warn, all people who deal with the property that they
so deal with it at their own risk, and whatever rights they may acquire in the
property in any voluntary transaction are subject to the results of the action,
and may well be inferior and subordinate to those which may be finally
determined and laid down therein." The notice of lis pendens--that real
[22]

property is involved in an action--is ordinarily recorded without the intervention


of the court where the action is pending. As a settled rule, notice of lis
[23]

pendens may be annotated only where there is an action or proceeding in


court which affects title to or possession of real property.

Heir of Lopez SR v Enriquez


Alfonso Sandoval (Sandoval) and Roman Ozaeta, Jr. (Ozaeta) filed an application for
registration of title before the Regional Trial Court. The land registration court issued an
order of general default and hearings on the application followed. the land registration
court granted the application. The decision became final and executory, and the land
registration court issued a certificate of finality. LRA issued on 20 October 1977 Decree
Nos. N-217643 and N-217644 in the names of Sandoval and his wife Rosa Ruiz, and
Ozaeta and his wife Ma. Salome Lao.

petitioners Eugenio Lopez, Jr., Manolo Lopez, Oscar Lopez, and Presentacion L.
Psinakis (petitioners), heirs of Eugenio Lopez, Sr., filed a motion[6] in LRC No. N-18887.
The motion alleged that Sandoval and Ozaeta sold the lots subject of the application to
the late Eugenio Lopez, Sr. on 23 September 1970. Petitioners prayed that the court
consider in the land registration case the Deed of Absolute Sale[7]over the lots executed
by Sandoval and Ozaeta and their respective spouses in favor of Eugenio Lopez, Sr.
Invoking Section 22 of Presidential Decree No. 1529 (PD 1529),[8] petitioners also
prayed that the court issue the decree of registration in their names as the successors-
in-interest of Eugenio Lopez, Sr.

The land registration court gave due course to the motion and conducted
hearings.[9]
The Register of Deeds of Marikina City issued the corresponding OCT Nos.
O-1603 and O-1604 in favor of Sandoval and Ozaeta and their spouses only on
18 August 1998.
On 25 November 1998, petitioners filed with the Register of Deeds of
Marikina City an application to annotate the notice of lis pendens at the back of
OCT Nos. O-1603 and O-1604 on the ground that petitioners have filed with the
land registration court a motion to declare OCT Nos. O-1603 and O-1604
void.[14] Petitioners attached to the application a copy of the 25 November 1998
motion and the pertinent OCTs.
In a letter[15] dated 15 December 1998, the Register of Deeds of Marikina
City denied the application to annotate the notice of lis pendens.

RULING:
The Register of Deeds denied registration of the notice of lis pendens
because the application was bereft of the original petition or complaint upon
which this office will base its action.[28] In consulta to the LRA, petitioners
pointed out that they have complied with the requirements for the registration
of the notice of lis pendens, as follows:

7.2.1 The Notice of Lis Pendens contains a statement of the filing by the Heirs of
Eugenio Lopez of a motion to declare Original Certificates of Title Nos. O-1603 and
O-1604 null and void;

7.2.2 It contains the name of the court wherein the motion is pending which is the
registration court, Regional Trial Court, Branch 152, Pasig City. The date of the filing
of the motion is shown on the motion itself wherein the receipt of said motion by the
land registration court on November 25, 1998 is duly stamped;

7.2.3 The numbers of the Original Certificates of Title Nos. O-1603 and O-1604 are
clearly indicated in the notice;

7.2.4 There is adequate description of the land affected in the Notice of Lis Pendens;

7.2.5 The names of the registered owners are indicated in Paragraph 4 of the Motion
attached to the Notice;

7.2.6 A copy of the motion to declare OCT Nos. O-1603 and O-1604 null and void,
dated November 25, 1998 upon which the Register of Deeds of the Province of Rizal
will base its action is attached as Annex A of the Notice of Lis Pendens. (Emphasis in
the original)

Petitioners enumeration readily reveals that they have not complied with the requisites.
Both the LRA and the appellate court denied the application for a notice of lis
pendens because petitioners are mere movants, and not original parties, in LRC No. N-
18887. As petitioners are not parties to an action as contemplated in Section 76 of PD
1529, they failed to present the requisite pleading to the Register of Deeds of Marikina
City. We hold that the Register of Deeds correctly denied the application for a notice
of lis pendens.