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Depra v.

Dumlao
136 SCRA 475

DOCTRINE: The owner of land on which improvement was built by another in good faith is entitled to removal
of improvement only after land owner has opted to sell the land and the builder refused to pay for the same.
where the land’s value is considerably more than the improvement, the landowner cannot compel the builder to
buy the land. In such event, a “forced lease” is created and the court shall fix the terms thereof in case the parties
disagree thereon.

FACTS:
Francisco Depra, is the owner of a parcel of land registered, situated in the municipality of Dumangas, Iloilo.
Agustin Dumlao, defendant-appellant, owns an adjoining lot. When Dumlao constructed his house on his lot, the
kitchen thereof had encroached on an area of thirty four (34) square meters of Depra’s property, After the
encroachment was discovered in a relocation survey of Depra’s lot made on November 2, 1972, his mother,
Beatriz Depra after writing a demand letter asking Dumlao to move back from his encroachment, filed an action
for Unlawful Detainer. Said complaint was later amended to include Depra as a party plaintiff. After trial, the
Municipal Court found that Dumlao was a builder in good faith, and applying Article 448 of the Civil Code. Depra
did not accept payment of rentals so that Dumlao deposited such rentals with the Municipal Court. In this case,
the Municipal Court, acted without jurisdiction, its Decision was null and void and cannot operate as res judicata
to the subject complaint for Quieting of Title. The court conceded in the MCs decision that Dumlao is a builder
in good faith.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the factual situations of Dumlao and Depra conform to the juridical positions respectively defined
by law, for a "builder in good faith" under Article 448, a "possessor in good faith" under Article 526 and a
"landowner in good faith' under Article 448?

HELD:
Owner of the land on which improvement was built by another in good faith is entitled to removal of improvement
only after landowner has opted to sell the land and the builder refused to pay for the same. Res judicata doesn’t
apply wherein the first case was for ejectment and the other was for quieting of title.

ART. 448. The owner of the land on which anything has been built sown or planted in good faith, shall have the
right to appropriate as his own the works, sowing or planting, after payment of the indemnity provided for in
articles 546 and 548, or to oblige the one who built or planted to pay the price of the land, and the one who
sowed, the proper rent.

However, the builder or planter cannot be obliged to buy the land if its value is considerably more than that of
the building or trees. In such case, he shall pay reasonable rent, if the owner of the land does not choose to
appropriate the building or trees after proper indemnity. The parties shall agree upon the terms of the lease and
in case of disagreement, the court shall fix the terms thereof.
Spouses del Campo v. Abesia
160 SCRA 379

DOCTRINE: When the co-ownership is terminated by the partition and it appears that the house of the
defendants occupies a portion of 5 square meters of the land pertaining to plaintiffs which the defendant
obviously built in good faith, the provisions of Article 448 of the new Civil Code should apply.

FACTS:
An action for partition of a parcel of land was filed by the spouses Del Campo in the CFI of Cebu. Plaintiffs and
defendants are co-owners pro indiviso of this lot in the proportion of and 1/3 share each, respectively. The trial
court appointed a commissioner in accordance with the agreement of the parties. The commissioner conducted
a survey, prepared a sketch plan and submitted a report to the trial court on May 29, 1976, recommending that
the property be divided into two lots: Lot 1161-A with an area of 30 square meters for the spouses Del Campo
and Lot No. 1161-B with an area of 15 square meters for Abesia. Upon surveying, it was shown that the house
of Abesia occupied the portion with an area of 5 square meters of Lot 1161-A of the spouses Del Campo. The
parties manifested their conformity to the report and asked the trial court to finally settle and adjudicate who
among the parties should take possession of the 5 square meters of the land in question.

ISSUE:
Whether or Not Article 448 of the Civil Code is applicable to a builder in good faith when the property involved is
owned in common.

HELD:
When the co-ownership is terminated by the partition and it appears that the house of Abesia occupies a portion
of 5 square meters of the land pertaining to spouses Del Campo which Abesia obviously built in good faith, the
provisions of Article 448 of the new Civil Code should apply.

In applying Article 448 of the New Civil Code, the plaintiffs have the right to appropriate said portion of the house
of defendants upon payment of indemnity to defendants as provided for in Article 546 of the Civil Code.
Otherwise, the plaintiffs may oblige the defendants to pay the price of the land occupied by their house. But if
the price asked for is considerably much more than the value of the portion of the house of defendants built
thereon, then the latter cannot be obliged to buy the land. The defendants shall then pay the reasonable rent to
the plaintiff upon such terms and conditions that they may agree. In case of disagreement, the trial court shall fix
the terms thereof. The defendants may opt to demolish or remove the said portion of their house, at their own
expense, if they so decide.
Sarmiento v. Agana
129 SCRA 122

FACTS:
While one Ernesto was still courting his wife, the latter's mother had told him the couple could build a residential
house on a certain lot. They constructed a residential house.

Subsequently, the land was sold to petitioner Sarmiento, who asked Ernesto and his wife to vacate. Sarmiento
filed an Ejectment suit against them.

In the evidentiary hearing, Sarmiento submitted the deed of sale of the land which showed the price to be
PHP15,000. On the otherhand, Ernesto testified that the residential house then cost PHP30,000-40,000, which
was not questioned.

The MTC found that Ernesto was a builder in good faith and the house had a value of PHP20,000. When the
case was elevated, the CFI of Pasay ordered Sarmiento to exercise his option, to reimburse Ernesto for the sum
of the house or allow them to purchase the land, within sixty days. Upon expiration of the period, Ernesto was
allowed to deposit the sum of PHP25,000 with the Court as the purchase price for the land.

ISSUE:
WON private respondents are builders in good faith. -- YES

HELD:
Ernesto and his wife were builders in good faith in view of the peculiar circumstance under which they had
constructed the residential house. As far as they knew, the land was owned by Ernesto's mother-in-law, and
could reasonably be expected to later on give them the land.

The owner of the building erected in good faith on a land owned by another, is entitled to retain the possession
of the land until he is paid the value of his building. The owner of the land, has the option either to pay for the
building or to sell his land to the owner of the building. But he cannot, as Sarmiento did, refuse both to pay for
the building and to sell the land and compel the owner of the building to remove it from the land where it is
erected.
Ballatan v. CA
304 SCRA 34

DOCTRINE: In the event that the owner elects to sell to the builder, planter or sower the land on which the
improvement stands, the price must be fixed at the prevailing market value at the time of payment.

FACTS:
The parties herein are owners of adjacent lots. Lot 24 is registered in the name of petitioners Ballatan. Lots 25
& 26 are registered in the name of respondent Go Sr. His son, Winston Go constructed a house on Lot 25.
Adjacent to Lot 26 is Lot 27, 4 registered in the name of respondent Li Ching Yao.

Petitioner Ballatan constructed her house on Lot 24. During the construction, she noticed that the concrete fence
and side pathway of respondent’s house encroached her property. Ballatan informed Go of this discrepancy and
his encroachment on her property. Surveys were made and it was found out that the lot area of petitioner
Ballatan was less by a few meters and that of respondent Li Ching Yao, which was three lots away, increased
by two 2 meters.

Petitioner Ballatan made a written demand on respondents Go to remove and dismantle their improvements on
Lot 24. Respondents Go refused. Hence, Ballatan filed for recovery of possession of real property. TC decided
in favor of petitioners. It ordered the Go's to vacate the subject portion, demolish their improvements. CA
modified: ordered Go to pay Ballatan, and respondent Li Ching Yao to pay Go and the value to be fixed at the
time of the taking.

ISSUE:
WON the value should be fixed at the time of the taking. -- NO

HELD:

All the parties are presumed to have acted in good faith. Their rights must, therefore, be determined in
accordance with the appropriate provisions of the Civil Code on property specifically Art. 448. Petitioners, as
owners of Lot 24, may choose to purchase the improvement made by respondents Go on their land, or sell to
respondents Go the subject portion. If buying the improvement is impractical as it may render the Go's house
useless, then petitioners may sell to respondents Go that portion of Lot 24 on which their improvement stands.
If the Go's are unwilling or unable to buy the lot, then they must vacate the land and, until they vacate, they must
pay rent to petitioners. Petitioners, however, cannot compel respondents Go to buy the land if its value is
considerably more than the portion of their house constructed thereon. If the value of the land is much more than
the Go's improvement, then respondents Go must pay reasonable rent. If they do not agree on the terms of the
lease, then they may go to court to fix the same.

In the event that petitioners elect to sell to respondents Go the subject portion of their lot, the price must be fixed
at the prevailing market value at the time of payment.
Technogas Phil. V. CA
268 SCRA 5

DOCTRINE: Possession acquired in good faith continues to be enjoyed in the same character in which it was
acquired, until the contrary is proved. Good faith consists in the belief of the builder that the land he is building
on is his, and his ignorance of any defect or flaw in his title. The good faith ceases from the moment defects in
the title are made known to the possessor, by extraneous evidence or by suit for recovery of the property by the
true owner.

FACTS:
Technogas Philippines Manufacturing Corp is the registered owner of Lot 4531-A of Lot 4531 with all buildings,
walls, and improvements therein, which they bought from Pariz Industries Inc. The lot that it adjoined, Lot 4531-
B, is owned and registered under the name of Eduardo Uy. It was later found out that a portion of the walled lot
encroached on the land owned by Uy. Technogas offered to by the encroachment but Uy refused.

They entered into a private agreement to demolish the wall on the encroached land. Consequently, Uy filed a
complaint for encroachment before the office of the Municipal Engineer and the Provincial Fiscal. However, the
complaint of did not prosper. This prompted Uy to dig a canal along the wall, causing it to collapse. Due to the
damage, petitioner filed a complaint against Uy for malicious mischief.

The RTC ruled in favor of Technogas and ordered Uy to sell the encroached land and pay for damages to the
wall.

The CA reversed the decision of the RTC and ordered Technogas to pay rent for the encroachment.

ISSUE:
WON Technogas is a builder in good faith -- YES

HELD:
Article 527 of the Civil Code presumes good faith, and since no proof exists to show that the encroachment over
a narrow, needle-shaped portion of private respondent’s land was done in bad faith by the builder of the
encroaching structures, the latter should be presumed to have built them in good faith. It is presumed that
possession continues to be enjoyed in the same character in which it was acquired, until the contrary is proved.

Good faith consists in the belief of the builder that the land he is building on is his, and his ignorance of any
defect or flaw in his title. Hence, such good faith, by law, passed on to Pariz’s successor, petitioner in this case.
The good faith ceases from the moment defects in the title are made known to the possessor, by extraneous
evidence or by suit for recovery of the property by the true owner.

Consequently, the builder, if sued by the aggrieved landowner for recovery of possession, could have invoked
the provisions of Art. 448 of the Civil Code. The benefit to the builder under this article is that, instead of being
outrightly ejected from the land, he can compel the landowner to make a choice between the two options: (1) to
appropriate the building by paying the indemnity required by law, or (2) sell the land to the builder. The landowner
cannot refuse to exercise either option and compel instead the owner of the building to remove it from the land.

In view of the good faith of both petitioner and private respondent, their rights and obligations are to be governed
by Art. 448. Hence, his options are limited to: (1) appropriating the encroaching portion of petitioner’s building
after payment of proper indemnity, or (2) obliging the latter to buy the lot occupied by the structure. He cannot
exercise a remedy of his own liking.

Petitioner, however, must also pay the rent for the property occupied by its building only up to the date private
respondent serves notice of its option upon petitioner and the trial court; that is, if such option is for private
respondent to appropriate the encroaching structure. In such event, petitioner would have a right of retention
which negates the obligation to pay rent. The rent should however continue if the option chosen is compulsory
sale, but only up to the actual transfer of ownership.
Manotok Reality v. Tecson
164 SCRA 587

DOCTRINES:
● Issuance of writ of execution is proper even if private respondent was adjudged a builder in good faith or
peculiar circumstances supervened; Option to retain the premises and pay for improvements or to sell
the premises to the builder in good faith belongs to the owner of the property.
● Where the improvements have been gutted by fire, the basis for private respondent’s right to retain the
premises has already been extinguished without petitioner’s fault.

FACTS:
In a complaint filed by the petitioner for recovery of possession and damages against the private respondent,
the then Court of First Instance of Manila rendered judgment declaring the defendant Nilo Madlangawa as a
builder or possessor in good faith; ordering the plaintiff to recognize the right of said defendant to remain in Lot
No. 345, Block 1, of the Clara Tambunting Subdivision until after he shall have been reimbursed by the plaintiff
the sum of P7,500.00, without pronouncement as to costs.

Petitioner filed with the trial court, presided over by respondent Judge Jose H. Tecson, a motion for the approval
of petitioner's exercise of option and for satisfaction of judgment, praying that the court issue an order: a)
approving the exercise of petitioner's option to appropriate the improvements introduced by the private
respondent on the property; b) thereafter, private respondent be ordered to deliver possession of the property in
question to the petitioner.

The respondent judge denied the motion by issuing the disputed order that under the peculiar circumstances
which supervened after the institution of this case, like, for instance, the introduction of certain major repairs of
and other substantial improvements on the controverted property, the instant motion of the plaintiff is not well-
taken and therefore not legally proper and tenable.

After a denial of its motion for reconsideration, the petitioner filed the present petition for mandamus alleging that
the respondent judge committed grave abuse of discretion in denying his motion to exercise option and for
execution of judgment on the grounds that under Articles 448 and 546 of the Civil Code, the exercise of option
belongs to the owner of the property, who is the petitioner herein, and that upon finality of judgment, the prevailing
party is entitled, as a matter of right, to its execution which is only a ministerial act on the part of the respondent
judge.

The private respondent filed his comment on the petition alleging that the same has already become moot and
academic because fire gutted not only the house of the private respondent but the majority of the houses in
Tambunting Estate.

Petitioner argues that since the judgment of the trial court has already become final, it is entitled to the execution
of the same and that moreover, since the house of the private respondent was gutted by fire, the execution of
the decision would now involve the delivery of possession of the disputed area by the private respondent to the
petitioner.

ISSUES:
1. Whether or not the private respondent is a builder in good faith. -- NO
2. Whether or not the issuance of writ of execution is proper even if private
respondent was adjudged a builder in good faith or peculiar circumstances supervened. -- YES
3. Whether or not the basis for private respondent’s right to retain the premises has
already been extinguished without petitioner’s fault when the improvements have been gutted by fire. --
YES

HELD:

1. The private respondent's good faith ceased after the filing of the complaint by the petitioner. A
possessor in good faith is entitled to the fruits only so long as his possession is not legally interrupted, and
such interruption takes place upon service of judicial summons (Arts. 544 and 1123, Civil Code). Thus, the
repairs and improvements introduced by the said respondents after the complaint was filed cannot be
considered to have been built in good faith, much less, justify the denial of the petitioner's option.

2. When the decision of the trial court became final and executory, it became incumbent upon the
respondent judge to issue the necessary writ for the execution of the same. There is, therefore, no basis for
the respondent judge to deny the petitioner's motion to avail of its option to approriate the improvements
made on its property.

Neither can the respondent judge deny the issuance of a writ of execution because the private respondent
was adjudged a builder in good faith or on the ground of "peculiar circumstances which supervened after the
institution of this case, like, for instance, the introduction of certain major repairs of and other substantial
improvements..." because the option given by law either to retain the premises and pay for the improvements
thereon or to sell the said premises to the builder in good faith belongs to the owner of the property.

3. Since the improvements have been gutted by fire, and therefore, the basis for private respondent's
right to retain the premises has already been extinguished without the fault of the petitioner, there is no other
recourse for the private respondent but to vacate the premises and deliver the same to herein petitioner.

WHEREFORE, IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, the petition is GRANTED and the respondent judge is hereby
ordered to immediately issue a writ of execution ordering the private respondent to vacate the disputed premises
and deliver possession of the same to the petitioner.
MWSS v. C.A.
143 SCRA 623

DOCTRINE: The right of a possessor in bad faith to remove improvements applies only to improvements for
pure luxury or mere pleasure, provided the thing does not suffer any injury and the lawful possessor does not
prefer to retain them by paying their value at the time of his possession.

FACTS:
Dagupan City filed a complaint against MWSS for recovery of ownership and possession of the Dagupan
Waterworks System. MWSS interposed R.A. 1383 as its defense; it vested to MWSS the ownership, possession,
and control of all waterworks system throughout the Philippines. MWSS also filed a counterclaim for
reimbursement of expenses it incurred for necessary and useful improvements.

Trial court ruled that MWSS is a possessor in bad faith so it is not entitled to claim reimbursement. MWSS
appealed to the Court of Appeals arguing that Dagupan City should be liable for payment of the balance of the
loan secured by MWSS for the improvement of the Dagupan Waterworks System; however the Court of Appeals
affirmed trial court’s judgment.

MWSS appealed to the Supreme Court for the removal of useful improvements. Dagupan City argues that MWSS
is a possessor in bad faith so it has absolutely no right to the useful improvements.

ISSUE:
Whether or not a possessor in bad faith has the right to remove useful improvements. -- NO

HELD:
Under Article 499 of the Civil Code, “he who builds, plants, or sows in bad faith on the land of another, loses
what is built, planted, or sown without right to indemnity.” Additionally, under Article 546 of the Civil Code, only
a possessor in good faith shall be refunded for useful expenses with the right of retention until reimbursed.
Finally, under Article 547 of the Civil Code, only a possessor in good faith may remove useful improvements if
this can be done without damage to the principal thing and if the person who recovers the possession does not
exercise the option of reimbursing the useful expenses.

The right of a possessor in bad faith to remove improvements applies only to improvements for pure luxury or
mere pleasure, provided the thing does not suffer any injury and the lawful possessor does not prefer to retain
them by paying their value at the time of his possession.

In this case, MWSS is a builder in bad faith so it loses whatever useful improvements it made without right to
indemnity.
Manotok Reality v. Tecson
164 SCRA 587

DOCTRINES:
● Issuance of writ of execution is proper even if private respondent was adjudged a builder in good faith or
peculiar circumstances supervened; Option to retain the premises and pay for improvements or to sell
the premises to the builder in good faith belongs to the owner of the property.
● Where the improvements have been gutted by fire, the basis for private respondent’s right to retain the
premises has already been extinguished without petitioner’s fault.

FACTS:
In a complaint filed by the petitioner for recovery of possession and damages against the private respondent,
the then Court of First Instance of Manila rendered judgment declaring the defendant Nilo Madlangawa as a
builder or possessor in good faith; ordering the plaintiff to recognize the right of said defendant to remain in Lot
No. 345, Block 1, of the Clara Tambunting Subdivision until after he shall have been reimbursed by the plaintiff
the sum of P7,500.00, without pronouncement as to costs.

Petitioner filed with the trial court, presided over by respondent Judge Jose H. Tecson, a motion for the approval
of petitioner's exercise of option and for satisfaction of judgment, praying that the court issue an order: a)
approving the exercise of petitioner's option to appropriate the improvements introduced by the private
respondent on the property; b) thereafter, private respondent be ordered to deliver possession of the property in
question to the petitioner.

The respondent judge denied the motion by issuing the disputed order that under the peculiar circumstances
which supervened after the institution of this case, like, for instance, the introduction of certain major repairs of
and other substantial improvements on the controverted property, the instant motion of the plaintiff is not well-
taken and therefore not legally proper and tenable.

After a denial of its motion for reconsideration, the petitioner filed the present petition for mandamus alleging that
the respondent judge committed grave abuse of discretion in denying his motion to exercise option and for
execution of judgment on the grounds that under Articles 448 and 546 of the Civil Code, the exercise of option
belongs to the owner of the property, who is the petitioner herein, and that upon finality of judgment, the prevailing
party is entitled, as a matter of right, to its execution which is only a ministerial act on the part of the respondent
judge.

The private respondent filed his comment on the petition alleging that the same has already become moot and
academic because fire gutted not only the house of the private respondent but the majority of the houses in
Tambunting Estate.

Petitioner argues that since the judgment of the trial court has already become final, it is entitled to the execution
of the same and that moreover, since the house of the private respondent was gutted by fire, the execution of
the decision would now involve the delivery of possession of the disputed area by the private respondent to the
petitioner.

ISSUES:
4. Whether or not the private respondent is a builder in good faith. -- NO
5. Whether or not the issuance of writ of execution is proper even if private
respondent was adjudged a builder in good faith or peculiar circumstances supervened. -- YES
6. Whether or not the basis for private respondent’s right to retain the premises has
already been extinguished without petitioner’s fault when the improvements have been gutted by fire. --
YES

HELD:

4. The private respondent's good faith ceased after the filing of the complaint by the petitioner. A
possessor in good faith is entitled to the fruits only so long as his possession is not legally interrupted, and
such interruption takes place upon service of judicial summons (Arts. 544 and 1123, Civil Code). Thus, the
repairs and improvements introduced by the said respondents after the complaint was filed cannot be
considered to have been built in good faith, much less, justify the denial of the petitioner's option.

5. When the decision of the trial court became final and executory, it became incumbent upon the
respondent judge to issue the necessary writ for the execution of the same. There is, therefore, no basis for
the respondent judge to deny the petitioner's motion to avail of its option to approriate the improvements
made on its property.

Neither can the respondent judge deny the issuance of a writ of execution because the private respondent
was adjudged a builder in good faith or on the ground of "peculiar circumstances which supervened after the
institution of this case, like, for instance, the introduction of certain major repairs of and other substantial
improvements..." because the option given by law either to retain the premises and pay for the improvements
thereon or to sell the said premises to the builder in good faith belongs to the owner of the property.

6. Since the improvements have been gutted by fire, and therefore, the basis for private respondent's
right to retain the premises has already been extinguished without the fault of the petitioner, there is no other
recourse for the private respondent but to vacate the premises and deliver the same to herein petitioner.

WHEREFORE, IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, the petition is GRANTED and the respondent judge is hereby
ordered to immediately issue a writ of execution ordering the private respondent to vacate the disputed premises
and deliver possession of the same to the petitioner.
Republic v. CA
132 SCRA 514

DOCTRINE: Article 457 of the New Civil Code states that, “To the owners of lands adjoining the banks of rivers
belong the accretion which they gradually receive from the effects of the current of the waters.”

Article 457 requires the concurrence of three requisites before an accretion is said to have taken place: (1) That
the deposit be gradual and imperceptible; (2) that it be made through the effects of the current of the water; and
(3) that the land where accretion takes place is adjacent to the banks of the rivers.

FACTS:
Tancinco (the “Tancincos”) are registered owners of a parcel of land situated at Barrio Ubihan, Meycauayan,
Bulacan bordering on the Meycauayan and Bocaue Rivers.

On 24 June 1973, the Tancincos filed the application for the registration of three lots adjacent to their fishpond
property (Lots 1, 2 and 3 of plan Psu-131892).

However, on 5 April 1974, Assistant Provincial Fiscal Amando C. Vicente, representing the Bureau of Lands (the
“Republic”) filed a written opposition to the said application for registration.

On 6 March 1975, in line with the recommendation of the Commissioner appointed by the Court, the Tancincos
filed a partial withdrawal of the application for registration of Lot 3.

On 7 March 1975, Lot 3 was ordered withdrawn from the application and trial proceeded only with respect to
Lots 1 and 2.

On 26 June 1976, the Court of First Instance of Bulacan rendered a decision granting the application on the
finding that the lots (1 and 2) are accretions to the Tancincos’ fishpond property.

On 30 July 1976, the Republic appealed to the Court of Appeals (the “CA”)

However, the CA, on 19 August 1982, rendered a decision affirming in toto the decision of the lower court.

Hence, the Republic filed this petition with the Supreme Court (the “SC”). The Republic contended that there is
no accretion to speak of under Article 457 of the New Civil Code because the Tancincos simply transferred their
dikes further down the riverbed of the Meycauayan River, and thus, if there is any accretion to speak of, it is
man-made and artificial and not the result of the gradual and imperceptible sedimentation by the waters of the
river.

ISSUE:
Whether there was accretion to the fishpond property of the Tancincos. -- NO

HELD:
The SC agreed with the Republic’s contention that there is no accretion to speak of under Article 457 of the New
Civil Code.

The SC held that Article 457 of the New Civil Code which provides that “To the owners of lands adjoining the
banks of rivers belong the accretion which they gradually receive from the effects of the current of the waters”,
requires the concurrence of three requisites before an accretion is said to have taken place, namely: (1) that the
deposit be gradual and imperceptible; (2) that it be made through the effects of the current of the water; and (3)
that the land where accretion takes place is adjacent to the banks of rivers.

The SC emphasized that the requirement that the deposit should be due to the effect of the current of the river
is indispensable. It held that this excludes from Article 457 of the New Civil Code all deposits caused by human
intervention.
It further held that alluvion must be the exclusive work of nature. On the contrary, in the instant case, there is
no evidence to prove that the addition to the fishpond property was made gradually through the effects of the
current of the Meycauayan and Bocaue rivers. The alleged alluvial deposits came into being not because of the
sole effect of the current of the rivers but as a result of the transfer of the dike towards the river and encroaching
upon it by reclamation.

Thus, the SC granted the Republic’s petition, reversed and set aside the decisions of the lower courts and
ordered the Tancincos to move back the dikes of their fishpond to their original location and return the disputed
property to the river to which it belongs.
Binalay v. Manalo
195 SCRA 374

DOCTRINE: For accretion to take place as a mode of acquiring ownership over the land, the land formed should
be directly adjacent to the land owned.

FACTS:
Guillermo Manalo bought parcels of land in Isabela; 8.65 hectares from was acquired from Faustino Taccad and
1.80 hectares was bought from Gregorio Taguba. The parcels of land were described as having the Cagayan
River on their west.

During a cadastral survey conducted, the two parcels of land was consolidated into one lot and was designated
as Lot No. 307. But since the survey was conducted on a rainy day, a portion of the land bought from Taccad
was covered with water and was not included in Lot No. 37.

The Sketch Plan shows that the Cagayan River running from south to north, forks at a certain point to form 2
branches (eastern and western branches) and then unites at the other end, further north, to form a narrow strip
of land. It appears that eastern branch of the river cuts through the land of Manalo and is inundated with water
during rainy season. The bed of the eastern branch is the unsurveyed portion of the land belonging to Manalo,
and is, for most part of the year (about 8 months), dry and susceptible to cultivation.

Lot 821 is located directly opposite Lot 307 and is separated from it during the rainy season. Being a portion of
the land bought from Taccad, Manalo claims that Lot 821 also belongs to him by way of accretion to the
submerged portion of the property to which it is adjacent. Petitioners (Binalay et al) however claims ownership
over the land as they have possessed it, occupied it and have cultivated it.

ISSUES:
Whether or not Manalo owns Lot 821?

HELD:
The Court held in the negative saying that:
1.) it is part of public dominion; and
2.) it fails to meet all the requisites needed for accretion to take place.

First, it must be noted that Art. 70 of the Law of Waters defines the natural bed or channel of a creek or river as
the ground covered by its waters during the highest floods. The periodic swelling of the water was taken into
consideration and it was concluded that the submerged portion of the land during rainy days forms part of the
natural bed of the river. In connection with this conclusion, Art. 420 of the Civil Code provides that rivers form
part of public dominion.

Second, accretion as a mode of acquiring property under Art. 457 of the Civil Code requires the concurrence of
3 requisites: 1) that the deposition of soil or sediment be gradual and imperceptible; 2) that it be the result of the
action of the waters of the river (or sea); and 3) that the land where accretion takes place is adjacent to the banks
of rivers (or the sea coast). In this case, the claimed accretion lies on the bank of the river not adjacent to Lot
307 but directly opposite Lot 307 across the river.

Lastly, SC held that it is difficult to suppose that a land with an area of 22.72 hectares resulted from slow accretion
to another lot of almost equal size. If Manalo’s contention is accepted, then his land would have doubled in a
span of 10 years.

All these considered, the Court held that the land in question is part of public dominion and neither Manalo nor
the petitioners were held owners of the land.
Heirs of Navarro v. IAC
268 SCRA 74

FACTS:
On October 3, 1946, Sinforoso Pascual filed an application for foreshore lease covering a tract of foreshore land
in Sibocon, Balanga, Bataan, having an area of approximately seventeen (17) hectares.

This application was denied on January 15, 1953. So was his motion for reconsideration. Subsequently,
petitioners' predecessor-in-interest, also now deceased, Emiliano Navarro, filed a fishpond application with the
Bureau of Fisheries covering twenty five (25) hectares of foreshore land also in Sibocon, Balanga, Bataan.
Initially the application was denied, eventually however the grant was given. Pascual claimed that this land is an
accretion to his property, The Talisay River as well as the Bulacan River flow downstream and meet at the Manila
Bay thereby depositing sand and silt on Pascual's property resulting in an accretion thereon. Sinforoso Pascual
claimed the accretion as the riparian owner.

On March 25, 1960, the Director of Lands, represented by the Assistant Solicitor General, filed an opposition
thereto stating that neither Pascual nor his predecessors-in-interest possessed sufficient title to the subject
property, the same being a portion of the public domain and, therefore, it belongs to the Republic of the
Philippines. On November 10, 1975, the courta quorendered judgment finding the subject property to be
foreshore land and, being a part of the public domain, it cannot be the subject of land registration proceedings.

On appeal, the respondent court reversed the findings of the court a quo and granted the petition for registration
of the subject property but excluding certain areas. A motion for reconsideration was filed by in the CA but the
same was denied. Anchoring their claim of ownership on Article 457 of the Civil Code, petitioners vigorously
argue that the disputed 14-hectare land is an accretion caused by the joint action of the Talisay and Bulacan
Rivers which run their course on the eastern and western boundaries, respectively, of petitioners' own tract of
land.

ISSUE:
WON the petitioners can rightfully claim the land under the principle of accretion.

HELD:
The petitioner’s claim is misplaced. The principle of accretion is only applicable to owners whose estates are
adjacent to rivers as stated in Article 457 of the Civil Code. The disputed land is an accretion not on a river bank
but on a sea bank, or on what used to be the foreshore of Manila Bay which adjoined petitioners' own tract of
land on the northern side. As such, the applicable law is not Article 457 of to Civil Code but Article 4 of the
Spanish Law of Waters of 1866.

The disputed property is an accretion on a sea bank, Manila Bay being an inlet or an arm of the sea; as such,
the disputed property is, under Article 4 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866, part of the public domain. As part
of the public domain, the herein disputed land is intended for public uses, and "so long as the land in litigation
belongs to the national domain and is reserved for public uses, it is not capable of being appropriated by any
private person, except through express authorization granted in due form by a competent authority."Only the
executive and possibly the legislative departments have the right and the power to make the declaration that the
lands so gained by action of the sea is no longer necessary for purposes of public utility or for the cause of
establishment of special industries or for coast guard services.

Petitioners utterly fail to show that either the executive or legislative department has already declared the
disputed land as qualified, under Article 4 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866, to be the property of petitioners
as owners of the estates adjacent thereto.
Jagualing v. CA
194 SCRA 607

DOCTRINE: Article 465 of the Civil Code -an island belongs to the owner of the land along the nearer margin as
sole owner thereof; or more accurately, because the island is longer than the property of private respondents,
they are deemed ipso jure to be the owners of that portion which corresponds to the length of their property along
the margin of the river.

FACTS:
Janita Eduave inherited a parcel of land in Mindoro which was eroded and became surmountably underwater
because of typhoon Ineng. She has actual possesion of land and tends to its needs. She pays taxes, even
though, declared land fails in comparison to its present size. Eduave also made a loan with Luzon Surety in
consideration of said land for P6000. Eventually, because of the sudden increase in size of said lot from 4,937
sq.m. to16,452 sq.m. and the formation of an island, Janita permitted petitioners to occupy land in support of her
endeavors warding away informal settlers as well as planting corn and bananas in duration of their stay.

Afterwhich, petitioners assail that they would be the rightful owners of the said land by admission stating that
they acquired it through prescription.

ISSUE:
Between the one who has actual possession of an island that forms in a non-navigable and non-floatable river
and the owner of the land along the margin nearest the island, who has the better right thereto?

HELD:
Although there is much controversy regarding the matter, the meat of it is stated on the issue aforementioned.
In this regard the Court of Appeals did not err in applying Article 465 of the Civil Code. 12 Under this provision,
the island belongs to the owner of the land along the nearer margin as sole owner thereof; or more accurately,
because the island is longer than the property of private respondents, they are deemed ipso jure to be the owners
of that portion which corresponds to the length of their property along the margin of the river.

What then, about the adverse possession established by petitioners? Are their rights as such not going to be
recognized? It is well-settled that lands formed by accretion belong to the riparian owner. 13This preferential right
is, under Article 465, also granted the owners of the land located in the margin nearest the formed island for the
reason that they are in the best position to cultivate and attend to the exploitation of the same. 14 In fact, no
specific act of possession over the accretion is required. 15 If, however, the riparian owner fails to assert his claim
thereof, the same may yield to the adverse possession of third parties, as indeed even accretion to land titled
under the torrens system must itself still be registered.

WHEREFORE, We find no error committed by respondent court and DENY the petition for lack of sufficient merit.
The decision of respondent Court of Appeals is hereby AFFIRMED, without pronouncement as to costs. SO
ORDERED.
Santos v. Bernabe
54 Phil 19

DOCTRINE: Article 381 of the Civil Code states: “If, by the will of their owners, two things of identical or dissimilar
nature are mixed, or if the mixture occurs accidentally, if in the latter case the things cannot be separated without
injury, each owner shall acquire a right in the mixture proportionate to the part belonging to him, according to the
value of the things mixed or commingled.”

FACTS:
Plaintiff Urbano Santos deposited 778 cavans and 38 kilos of palay and appellant Pablo Tiongson deposited
1,026 cavans and 9 kilos of the same grain in defendant Jose C. Bernabe's warehouse. It does not appear that
the sacks of palay deposited in Jose C. Bernabe's warehouse bore any marks or signs nor were they separated
one from the other.

Pablo Tiongson filed with the Court of First Instance of Bulacan a complaint against Jose C. Bernabe, to recover
the cavans and kilos palay he deposited in the defendant's warehouse. At the same time, the application of Pablo
Tiongson for a writ of attachment was granted, and the attachable property of Jose C. Bernabe, including 924
cavans and 31 1/2 kilos of palay found by the sheriff in his warehouse, were attached, sold at public auction, and
the proceeds thereof delivered to said defendant Pablo Tiongson, who obtained judgment in said case.

Plaintiff, Urbano Santos, intervened in the attachment of the palay, but upon Pablo Tiongson's filing the proper
bond, the sheriff proceeded with the attachment, giving rise to the present complaint.

ISSUE:
Whether or not plaintiff acquired right over the mixture of cavans and kilos of palay. -- YES

HELD:
The sheriff having found only 924 cavans and 31 1/2 kilos of palay in said warehouse at the time of the
attachment thereof and there being no means of separating form said 924 cavans and 31 1/2 of palay belonging
to Urbano Santos and those belonging to Pablo Tiongson, the following rule prescribed in article 381 of the Civil
Code for cases of this nature, is applicable:

Art. 381. If, by the will of their owners, two things of identical or dissimilar nature are mixed, or if the mixture
occurs accidentally, if in the latter case the things cannot be separated without injury, each owner shall acquire
a right in the mixture proportionate to the part belonging to him, according to the value of the things mixed or
commingled.

The number of kilos in a cavan not having been determined, we will take the proportion only of the 924 cavans
of palay which were attached and sold, thereby giving Urbano Santos, who deposited 778 cavans, 398.49
thereof, and Pablo Tiongson, who deposited 1,026 cavans, 525.51, or the value thereof at the rate of P3 per
cavan.

Wherefore, the judgment appealed from is hereby modified, and Pablo Tiongson is hereby ordered to pay the
plaintiff Urbano Santos the value of 398.49 cavans of palay at at the rate of P3 a cavan, without special
pronouncement as to costs. So ordered.
Siari Valley Estate v. Lucasan
97 Phil. 987

DOCTRINE: One who has stolen a part of the stolen money must have taken the larger sum lost by the offended
party. If the commingling of two things is made in bad faith, the one responsible for it will lose his share.

FACTS:
Siara Valley Estate filed an action to recover 200 head of cattle that were driven to the adjoining ranch of
Lucasan, which the latter denied having appropriated or retained any cattle belonging to the former. Lucasan
alleging that there’s no actual evidence on the number of missing bulls and that plaintiff’s cattle comingle with
his. Trial Court: Ruled in favor of Siara Valley.

ISSUE:
WON Lucasan can recover his share of the cattle. -- NO

HELD:
Defendant’s cowboys and even his sons Rafael and Vicente- rounded up and drove plaintiff's cattle into his
pasture; he knew he had plaintiff's cattle, but refused toreturn them despite demands by plaintiff; he even
threatened plaintiff's men when the latter tried to retrieve its animals; he harassed them with false prosecutions
for their attempts to get back the company's animals; he wouldn't allow plaintiff' s cowboys to get into his pasture
to identify its flock; he rebranded several Siari Valley cattle with his own brand; he sold cattle without registering
the sales; after some cattle impounded were entrusted to his custody as trustee, he disposed of not less than 5
head of cattle among those he received as such trustee; lastly, he disposed of much more cattle than he had a
right to.

One who has stolen a part of the stolen money must have taken the larger sum lost by the offended party. If the
commingling of two things is made in bad faith, the one responsible for it will lose his share.
Aguirre v. Pheng
18 SCRA 18

DOCTRINE: Although ordinarily, the owner would be entitled to any accession thereto, the rule is different where
the works or improvements or the accession was made on the property by one who acted in good faith.

FACTS:
On June 28, 1954, Vicente Aldaba and Teresa V. Aldaba sold to Jesus Aguirre a circular bolted steel tank with
a capacity of 5,000 gallons, for the sum of P900.00, for which the latter delivered to the sellers duly endorsed,
Security Bank & Trust Company check No. 281912, in the amount of P900.00. Aguirre, however, failed to, take
physical possession of the tank, having been prevented from doing so by the municipal authorities of Los Baños,
Laguna (where the tank was located), in view of the claim of ownership being made by the Bureau of Public
Highways. It appears, however, that Vicente and Teresa Aldaba again sold the same tank on December 2, 1954
to Zosimo Gabriel, for P900.000. Gabriel, in turn, sold it to the Leonora & Company on December 5, 1954, for
P2,500.00. After some alterations and improvements made on the tank, Leonora & Company was able to sell
the tank to National Shipyards & Steel Corporation (Nassco), for P14,500.00.

ISSUE:
1. WON Aguirre can take ownership of the property -- YES
2. WON Aguirre should reimburse Leonora for the improvements -- YES

HELD:
It is clear that we have here a case of accession by specification: Leonora and Company, as purchaser acting
in good faith, spending P11,299.00 for the reconditioning of the tank which is later adjudged to belong to
petitioner Aguirre. There is no showing that without the works made by Leonora & Company, the tank in its
original condition when Aguirre paid P900.00 therefor, would command the price of P14,500 which Nassco was
willing to pay. Although ordinarily, therefore, Aguirre, as owner of the tank, would be entitled to any accession
thereto, the rule is different where the works or improvements or the accession was made on the property by
one who acted in good faith.2 And, it is not contended that the making of the improvements and incurring of
expenses amounting to P11,299.00 by Leonora & Company was done in bad faith. Furthermore, to uphold
petitioner's contention that he is entitled to the sum of P14,500.00 the price of the tank in its present condition,
would be to allow him to enrich himself at the expense of another. The lower courts, therefore, acted correctly in
ordering the reimbursement to Leonora & Company of the expenses it made on the tank.
Del Campo v. C.A.
351 SCRA 1

DOCTRINE:
1. The co-owner’s undivided interest could properly be the object of the contract of sale.

2. Also, undisturbed possession by a co-owner has the effect of a partial partition of the co-owner property
which entitles the possessor to the definite portion which he occupies.

FACTS:
Salome, Consorcia, Alfredo, Maria, Rosalia, Jose, Quirico and Julita, all surnamed Bornales, were the original
co-owners of Lot 162 (27,179 sq.m.). It was divided in aliquot shares among the eight (8) co-owners as follows:

Salome Bornales 4/16

Consorcia Bornales 4/16

Alfredo Bornales 2/16

Maria Bornales 2/16

Jose Bornales 1/16

Quirico Bornales 1/16

Rosalia Bornales 1/16

Julita Bornales 1/16

Sale by co-owner of her portion: Salome sold part of her 4/16 share to Soledad Daynolo. The land was specified
in the deed of sale. Thereafter, Soledad Daynolo immediately took possession of the land and built a house
thereon. Mortgage: A few years later, Soledad and her husband, Simplicio Distajo, mortgaged this portion to
Jose Regalado. Soledad eventually died. The husband was able to redeem the mortgage (portion of) land. The
heirs subsequently sold this to herein petitioners, the spouses Manuel Del Campo and Salvacion Quiachon.

Another sale by the co-owners of the entire lot: Later on, three of the eight co-owners (Salome, Consorcia and
Alfredo) sold 24,993 sq. m. of said lot to Jose Regalado. Meanwhile, Jose Regalado was able to obtain a title
in his name of the whole lot previously co-owned. The whole was subdivided and covered in further titles in his
name.

Hence, complaint by previous buyers: Thus, petitioners Manuel and Salvacion del Campo broug ht this complaint
for "repartition, resurvey and reconveyance" against the heirs of the now deceased Jose Regalado. They claim
that they owned an area of 1,544 square meters located within Lot 162-C-6 which was erroneously included in
TCT No. 14566 in the name of Regalado. Petitioners alleged that they occupied the disputed area as residential
dwelling ever since they purchased the property from the Distajos way back in 1951. They also declared the land
for taxation purposes and paid the corresponding taxes.

ISSUES:
1. Could Salome have validly sold her pro-indiviso share in Lot 162 by metes and bounds to Soledad, from
whom petitioners derived their title?

2. May the ownership of the previous buyers be upheld against that of the second buyer who has now a
registered title?

HELD:
1. YES. Sale valid up to portion of entitlement.
Even if a co-owner sells the whole property as his, the sale will affect only his own share but not those of the
other co-owners who did not consent to the sale.

Soledad became a co-owner of Lot 162 as of the year 1940 when the sale was made in her favor. It follows
that Salome, Consorcia and Alfredo could not have sold the entire Lot 162 to Jose Regalado. Regalado
merely became a new co-owner of Lot 162 to the extent of the shares which Salome, Consorcia and Alfredo
could validly convey. Soledad retained her rights as co-owner and could validly transfer her share to
petitioners in 1951.

2. Previous buyers who only had uninterrupted possession prevails over the second buyer despite the
latter’s registered title. His purchase constitutes fraud which defeats a purportedly indefeasible title.

The area subject matter of this petition had already been effectively segregated from the ‘mother lot’ even
before title was issued in favor of Regalado. It must be noted that 26 years had lapsed from the time
petitioners bought and took possession of the property in 1951 until Regalado procured the issuance of TCT
No. 14566. X x x. In the case of Vda. De Cabrera vs. Court of Appeals, we had occasion to hold that where
the transferees of an undivided portion of the land allowed a co-owner of the property to occupy a definite
portion thereof and had not disturbed the same for a period too long to be ignored, the possessor is in a
better condition or right than said transferees. (Potior est condition possidentis). Such undisturbed
possession had the effect of a partial partition of the co-owner property which entitles the possessor to the
definite portion which he occupies. Conformably, petitioners are entitled to the disputed land, having enjoyed
uninterrupted possession thereof for a total of 49 years up to the present.

Although Regalado’s certificate of title became indefeasible after the lapse of one year from the date of the
decree of registration, the attendance of fraud in its issuance created an implied trust in favor of petitioners
and gave them the right to seek reconveyance of the parcel wrongfully obtained by the former. Regalado
was aware of petitioners’ possession of the subject portion as well as the sale between Salome and Soledad.
Adille v. C.A.
157 SCRA 455

DOCTRINE: Prescription, as a mode of terminating a relation of co-ownership, must have been preceded by
repudiation (of the co-ownership). The act of repudiation, in turn is subject to certain conditions: (1) a co-owner
repudiates the co-ownership; (2) such an act of repudiation is clearly made known to the other co-owners; (3)
the evidence thereon is clear and conclusive, and (4) he has been in possession through open, continuous,
exclusive, and notorious possession of the property for the period required by law.

FACTS:
Felisa Alzul owns a parcel of land in Legazpi City, Albay. In her lifetime, she married twice. First,with Bernabe
Adille which was Rustico Adille's father and second, with Prospero Asejo from whom she had other children. In
1939, she entered in a pacto de retro sale with a period of three years for repurchase. Unfortunately, she died
in 1942 and was unable to settle her affairs accordingly. Rustico, acted on his own and acquired the land along
with a OCT, which he was able to procure stating that he was the only child of Felisa and Bernabe. He has then
been in charge of the land in question and has kept his actions from his siblings. Although there is one, namely,
Emeteria who happens to live in the same land he resides in. He was then deemed absolute owner of the land
and through his actuations seek to keep the land for himself not taking into account his other brothers nor his
sister. It is because of this that plaintiffs have come here and contend that trial court erred in:
I. ... declaring the defendant absolute owner of the property;
II. ... not ordering the partition of the property; and
III. ... ordering one of the plaintiffs who is in possession of the portion of the property to vacate the land,
p. 1 Appellant's brief.

ISSUE:
May a co-owner acquire exclusive ownership over the property held in common? -- NO

HELD:
Given that Rustico acquired the property individually, tends to it and is in possession together with the
corresponding OCT, it does not discount the fact that the perfection of such was done through fraudulent means.
His function of reacquisition only makes him a trustee in place of his other siblings. In addition, a torrens title
does not make for a mode of extinguishment with regard to co-ownership. The court also refuses to recognize
his claim of ownership by way of prescription given that he registered said land in 1955 and has been in his
possession until 1974.

Prescription, as a mode of terminating a relation of co-ownership, must have been preceded by repudiation (of
the co-ownership). The act of repudiation, in turn is subject to certain conditions: (1) a co-owner repudiates the
co-ownership; (2) such an act of repudiation is clearly made known to the other co-owners; (3) the evidence
thereon is clear and conclusive, and (4) he has been in possession through open, continuous, exclusive, and
notorious possession of the property for the period required by law.

Rustico's claim falls short because he did not repudiate. In fact, he had been keeping substantive information for
himself leaving all other co-owners oblivious with concern to his acts. So, the court finds it fit that although the
span of time is indeed what prescription necessitates, it is still not conclusive nor meritorious to its effect.

WHEREFORE, there being no reversible error committed by the respondent Court of Appeals, the petition is
DENIED. The Decision sought to be reviewed is hereby AFFIRMED in toto. No pronouncement as to costs.
Delima v. C.A.
201 SCRA 641

DOCTRINE: The issuance of the new title constituted an open and clear repudiation of the trust or co-ownership.

FACTS:
Lino Delima acquired a lot from the Friar Lands Estate in Cebu. He later died leaving as his only heirs three
brothers and a sister namely: Eulalio Delima, Juanita Delima, Galileo Delima and Vicente Delima. After his death,
a title was issued in the name of his legal heirs, as represented by Galileo Delima.

Galileo Delima declared the lot in his name for taxation purposes and paid the taxes thereon from 1954 to 1965.
Petitioners, who are the surviving heirs of Eulalio and Juanita Delima, filed with the Court of First Instance of
Cebu an action for reconveyance and/or partition of property and for the annulment of the land title with damages
against their uncles Galileo Delima and Vicente Delima.

The trial court rendered a decision in favor of petitioners.

The decision was appealed, and the CA reversed the lower court’s decision. It held that all other heirs (Eulalio,
Juanita and Vicente Delima) had already relinquished and waived their rights to the property in favor of Galileo,
considering that he alone paid the remaining balance of the purchase price and the realty taxes.

ISSUE:
WON Galileo Delima already acquired the property by prescription -- YES

HELD:
When a co-owner of the property in question executed a deed of partition and on the strength thereof obtained
the cancellation of the title in the name of their predecessor and the issuance of a new one in his name, in effect
denying or repudiating the ownership of the other co-owners over their shares, the statute of limitations started
to run for the purposes of the action instituted by the latter seeking a declaration of the existence of the co-
ownership and of their rights thereunder.

Since an action for reconveyance of land based on implied or constructive trust prescribes after ten (10) years,
it is from the date of the issuance of such title that the effective assertion of adverse title for purposes of the
statute of limitations is counted.

Evidence shows that TCT No. 2744 in the name of the legal heirs of Lino Delima, represented by Galileo Delima,
was cancelled by virtue of an affidavit executed by Galileo Delima and that on February 4, 1954, Galileo Delima
obtained the issuance of a new title in his name numbered TCT No. 3009 to the exclusion of his co-heirs. The
issuance of this new title constituted an open and clear repudiation of the trust or co-ownership, and the lapse
of ten (10) years of adverse possession by Galileo Delima from February 4, 1954 was sufficient to vest title in
him by prescription.

As the certificate of title was notice to the whole world of his exclusive title to the land, such rejection was binding
on the other heirs and started as against them the period of prescription. Hence, when petitioners filed their
action for reconveyance and/or to compel partition on February 29, 1968, such action was already barred by
prescription. Whatever claims the other co-heirs could have validly asserted before can no longer be invoked by
them at this time.
Mariategui v. C.A.
205 SCRA 337

DOCTRINE: Prescription, as a mode of terminating a relation of co-ownership, must have been preceded by
repudiation (of the co-ownership). The act of repudiation, in turn, is subject to certain conditions: (1) a co-owner
repudiates the co-ownership; (2) such an act of repudiation is clearly made known to the other co-owners; (3)
the evidence thereon is clear and conclusive; and (4) he has been in possession through open, continuous,
exclusive, and notorious possession of the property for the period required by law.

FACTS:
Lupo Mariategui died without a will. During his lifetime, Lupo Mariategui contracted three (3) marriages. With his
first wife he begot four (4) children. With his second wife, he begot a daughter. And with his third wife, he begot
three children.

At the time of his death, Lupo Mariategui left certain properties which he acquired when he was still unmarried.
Lupo's descendants by his first and second marriages executed a deed of extrajudicial partition whereby they
adjudicated unto themselves lots in the Muntinglupa Estate. Thereafter, an Original Certiicate of Title (OCT) was
issued in the name of the said heirs. Subsequently, the registered owners caused the subdivision of the said lot
into for which separate transfer certificates of title were issued to the respective parties.

Lupo's children by his third marriage filed with the lower court an amended complaint claiming that the lots were
owned by their common father, Lupo Mariategui, and that, with the adjudication of the lots to their co-heirs, they
(children of the third marriage) were deprived of their respective shares in the lots. Plaintiffs pray for partition of
the estate of their deceased father and annulment of the deed of extrajudicial partition.

The defendants filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds of lack of cause of action and prescription. The motion
to dismiss was denied by the trial court. The plaintiffs elevated the case to the Court of Appeals (CA) but the CA
upheld the trial court’s decision.

ISSUE:
Whether or not prescription barred private respondents' right to demand the partition of the estate of Lupo
Mariategui. -- NO

HELD:
Prescription does not run against private respondents with respect to the filing of the action for partition so long
as the heirs for whose benefit prescription is invoked, have not expressly or impliedly repudiated the co-
ownership. In other words, prescription of an action for partition does not lie except when the co-ownership is
properly repudiated by the co-owner.

Otherwise stated, a co-owner cannot acquire by prescription the share of the other co-owners absent a clear
repudiation of co-ownership duly communicated to the other co-owners. Furthermore, an action to demand
partition is imprescriptible and cannot be barred by laches. On the other hand, an action for partition may be
seen to be at once an action for declaration of co-ownership and for segregation and conveyance of a
determinate portion of the property involved.

Petitioners contend that they have repudiated the co-ownership when they executed the extrajudicial partition
excluding the private respondents and registered the properties in their own names. However, no valid
repudiation was made by petitioners to the prejudice of private respondents. Assuming petitioners' registration
of the subject lot was an act of repudiation of the co-ownership, prescription had not yet set in when private
respondents filed the present action for partition.

Petitioners' registration of the properties in their names did not operate as a valid repudiation of the co-ownership.

In Adille vs. Court of Appeals (157 SCRA 455, 461-462 [1988]), the Court held:
Prescription, as a mode of terminating a relation of co-ownership, must have been preceded by
repudiation (of the co-ownership). The act of repudiation, in turn, is subject to certain conditions: (1) a co-
owner repudiates the co-ownership; (2) such an act of repudiation is clearly made known to the other co-
owners; (3) the evidence thereon is clear and conclusive; and (4) he has been in possession through
open, continuous, exclusive, and notorious possession of the property for the period required by law.

WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED and the assailed decision of the Court of Appeals dated December 24,
1980 is Affirmed.