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PROPERTY

DIGESTS (2013 2014)

ATTY. VIVENCIO ABANO

G.R. No. 158687 January 22, 2008 DOMALSIN versus Spouses VALENCIANO Plaintiffs: FRISCO F. DOMALSIN Defendant: JUANITO VALENCIANO and AMALIA VALENCIANO Ponente: Chico-Nazario J. Summary: Better read the background. Its the very summary. DOCTRINE/APPLICATION (as applicable): Abandonment of a thing is the voluntary renunciation of all rights which a person may have in a thing, with the intent to lose such thing. A thing is considered abandoned and possession thereof lost if the spes recuperandi (the hope of recovery) is gone and the animus revertendi (the intention of returning) is finally given up. BACKGROUND: Property is in Sitio Riverside, Camp 3, Tuba, Benguet Frisco B. Domalsin, a lawyer-businessman, claimed that he was in continuous, adverse possession and in the concept of an owner for the past 19 years since 1979 as evidenced by his Tax Declaration in 1983. Domalsin likewise alleged that Spouses Valenciano entered the premises on August 1, 1998 to construct a building made of cement and strong materials, without the authority and consent of respondent, by means of force and strategy, and without a building permit from DPWH. Sps. Valenciano claimed that the ongoing construction was consented by DPWH while the improvements were introduced by the residents thereof, including its first residents, William and Gloria Banuca, and not by Valenciano. Sps. Valenciano was

just starting the construction because the permission was just given by Gloria Banuca. Summary of testimonies pro-Domalsin: Domalsin is a manager of Salamander Enteprises engaged in hauling of gravel and sand who got the land from Castillo Binay-an (occupant of the land) through a Deed of Waiver and Quitclaim. His workers including the truck drivers Mariano and Tonsing and foreman William Banuca were awarded with houses that they constructed in the area as a kind gesture to them and given the nature of their job except for the land area along the Kennon road where the first house was erected. Said houses, however, was cannibalized and now possessed by the respondents. Material testimony for the respondent: Gloria Banuca disclosed that it was she who invited the spouses to the land. She claimed that although Domalsin operated his business from 1981, he ceased and never returned from 1985. She was the one who level and improved the area including the portion of Kennon road after the same was destroyed by the earthquake of 1990. MCTC favored Domalsin and ordered the spouses to vacate the land and remove the structure based on material prior possession of the land and that the destruction of his house by the earthquake was not tantamount to abandonment. RTC affirmed the decision of the MCTC saying that the Domalsins act of paying the taxes was a clear manifestation of his intention not to abandon the property and since Gloria acted in bad faith for passing the property, Art. 449 apply- They shall lose what was built. CA reversed and set aside RTCs decision saying that the property is a portion of the road-right-of-way of Kennon road which forms part of the public dominion not susceptible to private acquisition of either party regardless of the prolonged occupation, tax payments, and improvements introduced thereon.

ISSUES TO BE RESOLVED:

RACHELLE ANNE GUTIERREZ

PROPERTY DIGESTS (2013 2014)

ATTY. VIVENCIO ABANO

1. Issue 1: W/N Domalsin abandoned the property? RESOLUTIONS AND ARGUMENTS ISSUE 1 Domalsin never abandoned the property Major Point 1: His opposition to the construction of respondents house upon learning of the same and the subsequent filing of the instant case are clear indicia of non-abandonment. The fact that the house was destroyed by the earthquake do not signify abandonment Gloria Banuca had no right to demolish then house tantamount to forcible entry Minor Point: SC said that the issue of abandonment should have been resolved by tha CA because it will determine whether the spouses can be given possession of the land since abandonment is the only way by which a possessor may lose a possession. Moreover, prior possession shall be the basis of the locus standi for an action of forcible entry and not ownership or title. FINAL VERDICT: Neither party can own the property. Respondents Juanito and Amalia Valenciano are ordered to remove their structure on the subject land within sixty (60) days from receipt of this decision, and to vacate and deliver the physical possession thereof to the Office of the District Engineer, Benguet Engineering District, Department of Public Works and Highways.

RACHELLE ANNE GUTIERREZ