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Concept of Marriage law in force at the time of the alleged marriage

Case No. 1 - BALOGBOG VS CA was celebrated.

FACTS: Art. 53 provides that “marriages celebrated

Ramonito and GenerosoBalogbog filed an action under the Civil Code of 1889 should be proven
for partition and accounting against their Aunt only by a certified copy of the memorandum in
Leoncia and Uncle Gaudioso for partition and the Civil Registry, unless the books thereof have
accounting of their grandparents’ estate at the not been kept or have been lost, or unless they
Court of First Instance of Cebu City which was are questioned in the courts, in which case any
granted by the latter. Leoncia and Gaudioso other proof, such as that of the continuous
appealed to the Court of Appeals but the latter possession by parents of the status of husband
affirmed the lower court’s decision. and wife, may be considered, provided that the
registration of the birth of their children as their
BasilioBalogbog and GenovevaArnibal died legitimate children is also submitted in
intestate in 1951 and 1961 respectively. They evidence”.
have three children, Leoncia, Gaudioso and
Gavino, their older brother who died in 1935. ISSUE:
Ramoncito and Generoso was claiming that they Whether Gavino and Catalina’s wedding is valid
were the legitimate children of Gavino by
Catalina Ubas and that, as such they were RULING:
entitled to the one-third share in the estate of Supreme Court affirmed the decisions of the trial
their grandparents. However, Leoncia and court and Court of Appeals in rendering Gavino
Gaudioso claimed they are not aware that their and Catalina’s marriage as valid and thus entitle
brother has 2 sons and that he was married. Ramonito and Generoso one third of their
They started to question the validity of the grandparents’ estate.
marriage between their brother Gavino and
Catalina despite how Gaudioso himself admitted The court further states that Arts. 42 to 107 of
during a police investigation proceeding that the Civil Code of 889 of Spain did not take
indeed Ramonito is his nephew as the latter is effect, having been suspended by the Governor
the son of his elder brother Gavino. General of the Philippines shortly after the
extension of that code of this country.
In the efforts of Ramoncito and Generoso to Therefore, Arts. 53 and 54 never came into
prove the validity of their parent’s marriage, they force. Since this case was brought in the lower
presented PrisciloTrazo, 81 years old then court in 1968, the existence of the marriage
mayor of Asturias from 1928 to 1934 and Matias must be determined in accordance with the
Pogoy who both testified that he knew Gavino present Civil Code, which repealed the
and Catalina to be husband and wife and that provisions of the former Civil Code, except as
they have three children. Catalina herself they related to vested rights, and the rules of
testified that she was handed a “receipt” evidence. Under the Rules of Court, the
presumably the marriage certificate by Fr. presumption is that a man and a woman
Jomao-as but it was burned during the war. conducting themselves as husband and wife are
legally married.
On the other hand,Leoncia claimed that her
brother Gavino died single at the family Albeit, a marriage contract is considered primary
residence in Asturias. She obtained a certificate evidence of marriage, failure to present it would
from the local Civil Registrar of Asturias to the not mean that marriage did not take place.
effect that the office did not have a record of the Other evidence may be presented where in this
names of Gavino and Catalina which was case evidence consisting of the testimonies of
prepared by Assistant Municipal Treasurer Juan witnesses was held competent to prove the
Maranga who testified in the hearing as well. marriage of Gavino and Catalina in 1929, that
they have three children, one of whom,
Leoncia and Gaudioso contended that the Petronilo, died at the age of six and that they are
marriage of Gavino and Catalina should have recognized by Gavino’s family and by the public
been proven in accordance with Arts. 53 and 54 as the legitimate children of Gavino.
of the Civil Code of 1889 because this was the
constitutional protection is ever available to him
or to her.
Case No. 2 - ZULUETA VS CA
The law insures absolute freedom of
FACTS: communication between the spouses by making
This is a petition to review the decision of the it privileged. Neither husband nor wife may
Court of Appeals, affirming the decision of the testify for or against the other without the
Regional Trial Court of Manila (Branch X) which consent of the affected spouse while the
ordered petitioner to return documents and marriage subsists. Neither may be examined
papers taken by her from private respondent's without the consent of the other as to any
clinic without the latter's knowledge and consent. communication received in confidence by one
from the other during the marriage, save for
Petitioner Cecilia Zulueta is the wife of private specified exceptions. But one thing is freedom
respondent Alfredo Martin. On March 26, 1982, of communication; quite another is a compulsion
petitioner entered the clinic of her husband, a for each one to share what one knows with the
doctor of medicine, and in the presence of her other. And this has nothing to do with the duty of
mother, a driver and private respondent's fidelity that each owes to the other.
secretary, forcibly opened the drawers and
cabinet in her husband's clinic and took 157 The review for petition is DENIED for lack of
documents consisting of private correspondence merit.
between Dr. Martin and his alleged paramours,
greetings cards, cancelled checks, diaries, Dr. Essential Requirements
Martin's passport, and photographs. The Case No. 3 - CHI MING TSOI VS CA
documents and papers were seized for use in
evidence in a case for legal separation and for FACTS:
disqualification from the practice of medicine Chi Ming Tsoi and Gina Lao Tsoi was married in
which petitioner had filed against her husband. 1988. After the celebration of their wedding,
they proceed to the house of defendant’s
ISSUE: mother. There was no sexual intercourse
Whether the documents and papers in question between them during their first night and same
are inadmissible in evidence thing happened until their fourth night. In an
effort to have their honeymoon in a private
HELD: place, they went to Baguio but Gina’s relatives
No. Indeed the documents and papers in went with them. Again, there was no sexual
question are inadmissible in evidence. The intercourse since the defendant avoided by
constitutional injunction declaring "the privacy of taking a long walk during siesta or sleeping on a
communication and correspondence [to be] rocking chair at the living room. Since May 1988
inviolable" is no less applicable simply because until March 1989 they slept together in the same
it is the wife (who thinks herself aggrieved by her bed but no attempt of sexual intercourse
husband's infidelity) who is the party against between them. Because of this, they submitted
whom the constitutional provision is to be themselves for medical examination to a
enforced. The only exception to the prohibition in urologist in Chinese General Hospital in 1989.
the Constitution is if there is a "lawful order [from The result of the physical examination of Gina
a] court or when public safety or order requires was disclosed, while that of the husband was
otherwise, as prescribed by law." Any violation kept confidential even the medicine prescribed.
of this provision renders the evidence obtained There were allegations that the reason why Chi
inadmissible "for any purpose in any Ming Tsoi married her is to maintain his
proceeding." residency status here in the country. Gina does
not want to reconcile with Chi Ming Tsoi and
The intimacies between husband and wife do want their marriage declared void on the ground
not justify any one of them in breaking the of psychological incapacity. On the other hand,
drawers and cabinets of the other and in the latter does not want to have their marriage
ransacking them for any telltale evidence of annulled because he loves her very much, he
marital infidelity. A person, by contracting has no defect on his part and is physically and
marriage, does not shed his/her integrity or his psychologically capable and since their
right to privacy as an individual and the relationship is still young, they can still overcome
their differences. Chi Ming Tsoi submitted
himself to another physical examination and the ISSUE:
result was there is not evidence of impotency Whether or not the petitioner’s prior marriage
and he is capable of erection. was merely voidable assuming the presence of
force exerted against both parties.
Whether Chi Ming Tsoi’s refusal to have sexual HELD:
intercourse with his wife constitutes The Supreme Court upheld that there is no need
psychological incapacity. for petitioner to prove that her first marriage was
initiated by force committed against both parties
HELD: because assuming that this is so, the marriage
The abnormal reluctance or unwillingness to will not be void but merely voidable (Article 85,
consummate his marriage is strongly indicative Civil Code) and therefore valid until annulled.
of a serious personality disorder which to the Since no annulment has yet been made, it is
mind of the Supreme Court clearly demonstrates clear that when she married private respondent,
an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning she was still validly married to her first husband,
and significance tot the marriage within the consequently, her marriage to respondent is
meaning of Article 36 of the Family Code. void. Hence, petitioner’s prior marriage is merely
voidable but valid until annulled.
If a spouse, although physically capable but
simply refuses to perform his or her essential
marital obligations and the refusal is senseless Case No. 5 - REPUBLIC VS. ALBIOS
and constant, Catholic marriage tribunals
attribute the causes to psychological incapacity FACTS:
than to stubborn refusal. Furthermore, one of Fringer and Liberty Albios got married on
the essential marital obligations under the October 22, 2004, before the sala of Judge Calo
Family Code is to procreate children thus in Mandaluyong City. 2 years after their
constant non-fulfillment of this obligation will marriage (December 6, 2006), Albios filed with
finally destroy the integrity and wholeness of the the RTC a petition for declaration of nullity of her
marriage. marriage with Fringer. According to her, the
marriage was a marriage in jest because she
only wed the American to acquire US citizenship
and even arranged to pay him $2,000 in
exchange for his consent. Adding that
Case No. 4 - WEIGEL VS SEMPIO-DIY immediately after their marriage, they separated
and never lived as husband and wife because
FACTS: they never really had any intention of entering
The abnormal reluctance or unwillingness to into a married state and complying with their
consummate his marriage is strongly indicative marital obligations. The court even sent
of a serious personality disorder which to the summons to the husband but he failed to file an
mind of the Supreme Court clearly demonstrates answer.
an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning
and significance tot the marriage within the Both the RTC and CA ruled in favor of Albios
meaning of Article 36 of the Family Code. declaring that the marriage was void ab initio for
lack of consent because the parties failed to
If a spouse, although physically capable but freely give their consent to the marriage as they
simply refuses to perform his or her essential had no intention to be legally bound by it and
marital obligations and the refusal is senseless used it only as a means to acquire American
and constant, Catholic marriage tribunals citizenship in consideration of $2,000.00..
attribute the causes to psychological incapacity However, the Office of the Solicitor General
than to stubborn refusal. Furthermore, one of (OSG) elevated the case to the SC. According to
the essential marital obligations under the the OSG, the case do not fall within the concept
Family Code is to procreate children thus of a marriage in jest as the parties intentionally
constant non-fulfillment of this obligation will consented to enter into a real and valid
finally destroy the integrity and wholeness of the marriage. That the parties here intentionally
marriage. consented to enter into a real and valid
marriage, for if it were otherwise, the purpose of
Albios to acquire American citizenship would be FACTS:
rendered futile. On November 26, 2002, petitioner Rommel
Jacinto DantesSilverio filed a petition for the
ISSUE: change of his first name and sex in his birth
Is a marriage, contracted for the sole purpose of certificate in the Regional Trial Court of Manila,
acquiring American citizenship in consideration Branch 8. He then sought to have his name in
of $2,000.00, void ab initio on the ground of lack his birth certificate changed from “Rommel
of consent? Jacinto” to “Mely,” and his sex from “male” to
“female.” The trial court ruled in his favor.
NO. Both Fringer and Albios consented to the The Republic filed a petition for certiorari in the
marriage. In fact, there was real consent CA alledging that there is no law allowing the
because it was not vitiated nor rendered change of entries in the birth certificate by
defective by any vice of consent. reason of sex alteration. The CA rendered a
decision in favor of the Republic. It ruled that the
Their consent was also conscious and intelligent that the trial court’s decision lacked legal basis.
as they understood the nature and the beneficial There is no law allowing the change of either
and inconvenient consequences of their name or sex in the certificate of birth on the
marriage, as nothing impaired their ability to do ground of sex reassignment through surgery.
so. Thus, the Court of Appeals granted the
Republic’s petition, set aside the decision of the
That their consent was freely given is best trial court and ordered the dismissal of SP Case
evidenced by their conscious purpose of No. 02-105207. Petitioner moved for
acquiring American citizenship through reconsideration but it was denied. Hence, this
marriage. Such plainly demonstrates that they petition.
willingly and deliberately contracted the
marriage. There was a clear intention to enter ISSUE:
into a real and valid marriage so as to fully Whether or not petitioner is allowed to change of
comply with the requirements of an application name and sex in the birth certificate under Art.
for citizenship. There was a full and complete 407 to 413 of the Civil Code, Rules 103 and 108
understanding of the legal tie that would be of the Rules of Court, and RA 9048 on grounds
created between them, since it was that precise of sex reassignment.
legal tie which was necessary to accomplish
their goal. HELD:
No. The petition lacks merit. Before a person
Under Article 2 of the Family Code, for consent can legally change his given name, he must
to be valid, it must be (1) freely given and (2) present proper or reasonable cause or any
made in the presence of a solemnizing officer. compelling reason justifying such change. In
addition, he must show that he will be prejudiced
A "freely given" consent requires that the by the use of his true and official name. In this
contracting parties willingly and deliberately case, he failed to show, or even allege, any
enter into the marriage. prejudice that he might suffer as a result of using
his true and official name.
Consent must be real in the sense that it is not
vitiated nor rendered defective by any of the Jurisdiction over applications for change of first
vices of consent under Articles 45 and 46 of the name is now primarily lodged with the
Family Code, such as fraud, force, intimidation, aforementioned administrative officers. RA 9048
and undue influence. None of these are present now governs the change of first name. It vests
in the case. the power and authority to entertain petitions for
change of first name to the city or municipal civil
Therefore, their marriage remains valid. registrar or consul general concerned. Under the
law, therefore, jurisdiction over applications for
change of first name is now primarily lodged with
the aforementioned administrative officers. The
Case No. 6 - SILVERIO VS REPUBLIC intent and effect of the law is to exclude the
change of first name from the coverage of Rules something that allows a post-operative male-to-
103 (Change of Name) and 108 (Cancellation or female transsexual to be included in the
Correction of Entries in the Civil Registry) of the category “female.”
Rules of Court, until and unless an
administrative petition for change of name is first The changes sought by petitioner will have
filed and subsequently denied. It likewise lays serious and wide-ranging legal and public policy
down the corresponding venue, form, and consequences. First, even the trial court itself
procedure. In sum, the remedy and the found that the petition was but petitioner’s first
proceedings regulating change of first name are step towards his eventual marriage to his male
primarily administrative in nature, not judicial. fiancé. However, marriage, one of the most
sacred social institutions, is a special contract of
It was also filed in the wrong venue as the permanent union between a man and a woman.
proper venue was in the Office of the Civil One of its essential requisites is the legal
Registrar of Manila where his birth certificate is capacity of the contracting parties who must be
kept. In sum, the petition in the trial court in so a male and a female. To grant the changes
far as it prayed for the change of petitioner’s first sought by petitioner will substantially reconfigure
name was not within that court’s primary and greatly alter the laws on marriage and family
jurisdiction as the petition should have been filed relations. It will allow the union of a man with
with the local civil registrar concerned, assuming another man who has undergone sex
it could be legally done. It was an improper reassignment (a male-to-female post-operative
remedy because the proper remedy was transsexual). Second, there are
administrative, that is, that provided under RA various laws which apply particularly to women
9048. It was also filed in the wrong venue as the such as the provisions of the Labor Code on
proper venue was in the Office of the Civil employment of women, certain felonies under
Registrar of Manila where his birth certificate is the Revised Penal Code 40 and the presumption
kept. of survivorship in case of calamities under Rule
131 of the Rules of Court, among others. These
Words employed in a statute are presumed to laws underscore the public policy in relation to
have been used in that sense unless the context women which could be substantially affected if
says otherwise. When words are not defined in a petitioner’s petition were to be granted.
statute they are to be given their common and
ordinary meaning in the absence of a contrary The duty of the courts is to apply or interpret the
legislative intent. The words “sex,” “male” and law, not to make or amend it. It is true that
“female” as used in the Civil Register Law and Article 9 of the Civil Code mandates that “[n]o
laws concerning the civil registry (and even all judge or court shall decline to render judgment
other laws) should therefore be understood in by reason of the silence, obscurity or
their common and ordinary usage, there being insufficiency of the law.” However, it is not a
no legislative intent to the contrary. In this license for courts to engage in judicial
connection, sex is defined as “the sum of legislation. The duty of the courts is to apply or
peculiarities of structure and function that interpret the law, not to make or amend it.
distinguish a male from a female” or “the Statutes define who may file petitions for change
distinction between male and female.” Female is of first name and for correction or change of
“the sex that produces ova or bears young” and entries in the civil registry, where they may be
male is “the sex that has organs to produce filed, what grounds may be invoked, what proof
spermatozoa for fertilizing ova.” Thus, the words must be presented and what procedures shall
“male” and “female” in everyday understanding be observed. In our system of government, it is
do not include persons who have undergone sex for the legislature, should it choose to do so, to
reassignment. Furthermore, “words that are determine what guidelines should govern the
employed in a statute which had at the time a recognition of the effects of sex reassignment.
well-known meaning are presumed to have been The need for legislative guidelines becomes
used in that sense unless the context compels to particularly important in this case where the
the contrary.” Since the statutory language of claims asserted are statute-based. It might be
the Civil Register Law was enacted in the early theoretically possible for this Court to write a
1900s and remains unchanged, it cannot be protocol on when a person may be recognized
argued that the term “sex” as used then is as having successfully changed his sex.
something alterable through surgery or However, this Court has no authority to fashion
a law on that matter, or on anything else. The preponderant biological support for considering
Court cannot enact a law where no law exists. It him as being male.”
can only apply or interpret the written word of its
co-equal branch of government, Congress. The Supreme Court further held that they give
respect to (1) the diversity of nature; and (2) how
an individual deals with what nature has handed
out. That is, the Supreme Court respects the
Case No. 7 - REPUBLIC VS CAGANDAHAN respondent’s congenital condition and his
mature decision to be a male. Life is already
FACTS: difficult for the ordinary person. The Court added
Jennifer Cagandahan filed before the Regional that a change of name is not a matter of right but
Trial Court Branch 33 of Siniloan, Laguna a of judicial discretion, to be exercised in the light
Petition for Correction of Entries in Birth of the reasons and the consequences that will
Certificate of her name from Jennifer B. follow.
Cagandahan to Jeff Cagandahan and her
gender from female to male. It appearing that
Jennifer Cagandahan is sufferingfrom
Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia which is a rare Formal Requirements – Authority of the
medical condition where afflicted persons Solemnizing Officer
possess both male and female characteristics.
Jennifer Cagandahan grew up with secondary Case No. 8 - NAVARRO VS DOMAGTOY
male characteristics. To further her petition,
Cagandahan presented in court the medical FACTS:
certificate evidencing that she is suffering from Municipal Mayor of Dapa, Surigaodel Norte,
Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia which certificate Rodolfo G. Navarro filed a complaint on two
is issued by Dr. Michael Sionzon of the specific acts committed by respondent Municipal
Department of Psychiatry, University of the Circuit Trial Court Judge Hernando Domagtoy
Philippines-Philippine General Hospital, who, in on the grounds of gross misconduct, inefficiency
addition, explained that “Cagandahan in office and ignorance of the law.
genetically is female but because her body
secretes male hormones, her female organs did The first allegation of Navarro to Domagtoy is
not develop normally, thus has organs of both that the latter solemnized marriage of Gaspar
male and female.” The lower court decided in Tagadan and Arlyn Borja on September 27,
her favor but the Office of the Solicitor General 1994 despite the knowledge that the groom has
appealed before the Supreme Court invoking a subsisting marriage was merely separated. It
that the same was a violation of Rules 103 and was told that the wife of Gaspar left their
108 of the Rules of Court because the said conjugal home and has not returned and been
petition did not implead the local civil registrar. heard for almost seven years.

Whether or not Cagandahan’s sex as appearing The second allegation of the plaintiff was that
in her birth certificate be changed. the said Judge likewise solemnized marriage of
FlorianoDadoySumaylo and Gemma G. del
HELD: Rosario outside his court’s jurisdiction on
The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the October 27, 1994. The judge holds his office and
lower court. It held that, in deciding the case, the has jurisdiction in the Municipal Circuit Trial
Supreme Court considered “the compassionate Court of Sta Monica-Burgos, Surigaodel Norte
calls for recognition of the various degrees of but he solemnized the said wedding at his
intersex as variations which should not be residence in the municipality of Dapa located 40
subject to outright denial.” The Supreme Court to 50 km away.
made use of the availale evidence presented in
court including the fact that private respondent ISSUE:
thinks of himself as a male and as to the Whether or not the marriage solemnized by the
statement made by the doctor that defendant Judge Domagtoy were void;
Cagandahan’s body produces high levels of
male hormones (androgen), which is HELD:
The court held that the marriage between ISSUE:
Tagadan and Borja was void and bigamous Whether or not the petitioner can claim custody
there being a subsisting marriage between of the deceased.
Tagadan and his wife, notwithstanding, the latter
was gone for seven years and the spouse had a HELD:
well-founded belief that the absent spouse was The court held that the custody of the dead body
dead, Tagadan did not institute a summary of Vitaliana was correctly awarded to the
proceeding as provided in the Civil Code for the surviving brothers and sisters pursuant to
declaration of presumptive death of the Section 1103 of the Revised Administrative
absentee, without prejudice to the effect of Code which provides:
reappearance of the absent spouse.
“Persons charged with duty of burial- if the
With regard to the marriage of Sumaylo and Del deceased was an unmarried man or woman or a
Rosario, the said marriage was solidified as child and left any kin; the duty of the burial shall
valid, Albeit, Judge Domagtoy was not devolve upon the nearest kin of the deceased.
authorized to solemnize the marriage of
Sumaylo and Del Rosario as against Article 3 (1) Albeit, petitioner claims he is the spouse as
of the Family Code with regard to irregularity of contemplated under Art. 294 of the Civil Code,
formal requisites of marriage. In addition, article Philippine law does not recognize common law
4 par 3 of the Family Code of the Philippines marriages where “a man and a woman not
states that formal requisites shall not affect the legally married who cohabit for many years as
validity of marriage but the party or parties husband and wife, who represent themselves to
responsible for the irregularity shall be civilly, the public as husband and wife, and who are
criminally and administratively liable. reputed to be husband and wife in the
community where they live may be considered
Hence, Domagtoy was held administratively legally mauled in common law jurisdictions”. In
liable because of the latter’s failure to apply the addition, it requires that the man and woman
legal principles applicable in these cases, the living together must not in any way be
Court find Domagtoy have acted in gross incapacitated to contract marriage. Whereas,
ignorance of the law and because of this he was the petitioner has a subsisting marriage with
suspended for a period of six months. another woman, legal impediment that
disqualified him from even legally marrying


Vitaliana Vargas’ brothers and sisters unaware Case No. 10 - COSCA V. PALAYPAYON, 237
of the former’s death on August 28, 1988 filed a SCRA 249
petition for Habeas Corpus on September 27,
1988 before the RTC of Misamis Oriental Facts: In an administrative complaint filed with
alleging that she was forcible taken from her the Office of the Court Administrator, herein
residence sometime in 1987 and was confined respondents were charged with the following:
by the herein petitioner, Tomas Eugenio in his
palacial residence in Jasaan, Misamis Oriental. Illegal solemnization of marriage
The court then issued a writ of habeas corpus Complainants allege that respondent Judge
but petitioner refused to surrender the Vitaliana’s Palaypayon, Jr. solemnized marriages even
body to the sheriff on the ground that a corpse without the requisite marriage license. Thus,
cannot be subjected to habeas corpus couples were able to get married by the simple
proceedings. Vitaliana, 25 year old single, died expedient of paying the marriage fees.
of heart failure due to toxemia of pregnancy in Respondent judge did not sign their marriage
Eugenio’s residence. The court ordered that the contracts and did not indicate the date of
body should be delivered to a funeral parlor for solemnization, the reason being that he
autopsy but Eugenio assailed the lack of allegedly had to wait for the marriage license to
jurisdiction of the court. be submitted by the parties which was usually
several days after the ceremony. Indubitably, the
marriage contracts were not filed with the local before respondent Judge Bernabe. She avers
civil registrar. that respondent Judge assured her that the
marriage contract will be released ten (10) days
Held: after October 4, 1993. Complainant then visited
Judge Palaypayon subjected to the office of the Respondent Judge on October
administrative sanction 15, 1993 only to find out that she could not get
1. The evidence presented by the complainants the marriage contract because the Office of the
sufficiently show that respondent Judge Local Civil Registrar failed to issue a marriage
Palaypayon, Jr. had solemnized marriages license. She claims that respondent Judge
without a marriage license, and that it having connived with the relatives of Marcelo Moreno to
been shown that he did not comply with his duty deceive her.
in closely supervising his clerk of court in the Respondent denied that he conspired with the
preparation of the monthly report of cases being relatives of Marcelo Moreno to solemnize the
submitted to the Supreme Court, particularly for marriage for the purpose of deceiving the
the months of July and September, 1992 where complainant.
it has been proven that the reports for said two
(2) months were falsified with respect to the Respondent contends:
number of documents notarized. 1. That the Local Civil Registrar of Pasig has
actually prepared the marriage license but it was
2. The fact that Judge Palaypayon did not sign not
the marriage contracts or certificates of those released due to the subsequent objection of the
marriages he solemnized without a marriage father of Marcelo Moreno;
license, there were no dates placed in the 2. That he did not violate the law nor did he have
marriage contracts to show when they were the slightest intention to violate the law when he,
solemnized, the contracting parties were not in good faith, solemnized the marriage, as he
furnished their marriage contracts and the Local was moved only by a desire to help a begging
Civil Registrar was not being sent any copy of and pleading complainant who wanted some
the marriage contract, will not absolve him from kind of assurance or security due to her
liability. By solemnizing alone a marriage without pregnant condition;
a marriage license he as the solemnizing officer 3. That in order to pacify complainant, Marcelo
is the one responsible for the irregularity in not Moreno requested him to perform the marriage
complying (with) the formal requisites of ceremony, with the express assurance that "the
marriage and under Article 4(3) of the Family marriage license was definitely forthcoming
Code of the Philippines, he shall be civilly, since the necessary documents were complete;"
criminally and administratively liable. 4. That the contracting parties were not known
to him; and
3. The civil aspect is addressed to the 5. That both parties, particularly the
contracting parties and those affected by the complainant, were fully apprised of the effects of
illegal marriages, and what we are providing for a marriage
herein pertains to the administrative liability of performed without the required marriage license.
respondents, all without prejudice to their
criminal responsibility. The Revised Penal Code Held: In its Memorandum dated January 17,
provides that "(p)riests or ministers of any 1995, the Office of the Court Administrator
religious denomination or sect, or civil authorities stated:
who shall perform or authorize any illegal Careful study of the records reveal that
marriage ceremony shall be punished in indeed respondent Judge displayed his
accordance with the provisions of the Marriage ignorance of the law when he solemnized
Law." This is of course, within the province of the marriage without a marriage license.
the prosecutorial agencies of the Government. As a judge, he is presumed to be aware of
the existence of Article 3(2) of the Family
MARRIAGE LICENSE Code of the Philippines (E.O. 209, as
Case No. 11 - MORENO V. BERNABE, 246 amended by E.O. 227), which provides of
SCRA 120 a marriage is a valid marriage license.
Absence of said requisite will make the
Facts:Complainant alleges that on October 4, marriage void from the beginning (Article
1993, she and Marcelo Moreno were married 35 [3], the Family Code of the
Philippines). Judges are enjoined to show Formal Requirements – Marriage Ceremony
more than just a cursory acquaintance of Case No. 12 - GO V. CA
the law and other established rules. It
recommended that Respondent be held No less than the Constitution commands us to
liable for misconduct for solemnizing a protect marriage as an inviolable social
marriage without a marriage license and institution and the foundation of the family. In
that the appropriate administrative our society, the importance of a wedding
sanctions be imposed against him. ceremony cannot be underestimated as it is the
matrix of the family and, therefore, an occasion
We concur with the findings and worth reliving in the succeeding years.
recommendation of the office of the Court NOTE: Yung issue dito is
Administrator. nadeletenungnagvideoyung record ng wedding
Respondent, by his own admission 8 that he ceremony ng Spouses Ong. Taposnagfilesila ng
solemnized the marriage between complainant Specific Performance with Damages against
and Marcelo Moreno without the required sanagrecord. Walang Family Code related
marriage license, has dismally failed to live up to eklavu?
his commitment to be the "embodiment of
competence, integrity and independence" 9 and
to his promise to be "faithful to the law." Non-essential Requirements - Marriage
Respondent cannot hide behind his claim of Certificate
good faith and Christian motives which, at most,
would serve only to mitigate his liability could Case No. 13 - VILLANUEVA V. CA, 198 SCRA
never justify violation of the law. 472

On the charge regarding illegal marriages the Facts: Private respondent Catalina Sanchez,
Family Code pertinently provides that the formal claiming to be the widow of Roberto Sanchez,
requisites of marriage are, inter alia, a valid averred that her husband was the owner of a
marriage license except in the cases provided 275 sq. meter parcel of land located at Rosario,
for therein. Cavite, which was registered without her
knowledge in the name of the herein petitioners
Complementarily, it declares that the absence of on the strength of an alleged deed of sale
any of the essential or formal requisites shall executed in their favor by her late husband.
generally render the marriage void ab initio and Involving the report of a handwriting expert from
that, while an irregularity in the formal requisites the Philippine Constabulary Criminal
shall not effect the validity of the marriage, the Investigation Service, who found that the
party or parties responsible for the irregularity signature on the document was written by
shall be civilly, criminally and administratively another person, she prayed that the deed of sale
liable. be annulled, that the registration of the lot in the
name of the petitioners be canceled, and that
The civil aspect is addressed to the contracting the lot be reconveyed to her.
parties and those affected by the illegal Petitioners questioned the personality of
marriages, and what we are providing for herein the private respondent to file the complaint,
pertains to the administrative liability of contending that the late Roberto Sanchez was
respondents, all without prejudice to their never married.
criminal responsibility. The Revised Penal Code In the decision of the trial judge, he
provides that "[p]riests or ministers of any stated that the contract of a marriage submitted
religious denomination or sect, or civil authorities by the private respondent should be rejected
who shall perform or authorize any illegal because although the document was dated
marriage ceremony shall be punished in September 21, 1964, the Torrens certificate
accordance with the provisions of the Marriage issued to Roberto Sanchez over the subject land
Law." This is of course, within the province of on August 25, 1966, described his civil status as
the prosecutorial agencies of the Government. "single." It was also doubtful if she could bring
the action for reconveyance alone, even
assuming she was the surviving spouse of
Roberto Sanchez, considering that he left
illegitimate children and collateral relatives who
were also entitled to share in his estate. The Australia in 1989, thus, he was legally
decision was reversed by the Court of Appeals, capacitated to marry petitioner in 1994. While
which held that the trial court did err, as the suit for the declaration of nullity was
contended by the appellant, that Catalina pending, Rederick was able to secure a divorce
Sanchez was not the widow of Roberto Sanchez decree in Australia because the "marriage had
and that she had no capacity to institute the irretrievably broken down.” Consequently, he
complaint. prayed in his Answer that the Complaint be
dismissed on the ground that it stated no cause
Held: The Court notes at the outset that of action.
Catalina Sanchez has proved her status as the
widow of Roberto Sanchez with her submission Held:
of the marriage contract denominated as Exhibit Nationality Principle
"A." That evidence rendered unnecessary the 1. Philippine law does not provide for absolute
presumption that "a man and a woman deporting divorce; hence, our courts cannot grant it.
themselves as husband and wife have entered
into a lawful contract of marriage" and may also 2. A marriage between two Filipinos cannot
explain why Roberto Sanchez could not marry be dissolved even by a divorce obtained
the woman by whom he supposedly had two abroad,
illegitimate children, assuming these persons did because of Articles 15 and 17 of the Civil Code.
exist. It is strange that the trial court should
reject Exhibit "A" in favor of the Transfer 3. In mixed marriages involving a Filipino and
Certificate of Title describing Roberto a foreigner, Article 26 of the Family Code
Sanchez as "single," disregarding the allows the former to contract a subsequent
elementary principle that the best marriage in case the divorce is "validly obtained
documentary evidence of a marriage is the abroad by the alien spouse capacitating him or
marriage contract itself. A Torrens certificate is her to remarry."
the best evidence of ownership of registered
land, not of the civil status of the owner. 4. RederickRecio was no longer bound by
Philippine personal laws after he acquired
Case No. 14 - GARCIA V. RECIO Australian
Facts: RederickRecio, a Filipino, was married to citizenship in 1992. By becoming an Australian,
Editha Samson, an Australian citizen, in he severed his allegiance to the Philippines and
Malabon, Rizal, on March 1, 1987. They lived the vinculum juris that had tied him to Philippine
together as husband and wife in Australia. personal laws.
On May 18, 1989,a decree of divorce,
purportedly dissolving the marriage, was issued Recognition of Divorce Obtained Abroad
by an Australian family court. 5. A divorce obtained abroad by a couple, who
In 1992, RederickRecio (respondent) are both aliens, may be recognized in the
also became an Australian citizen. In 1994, Philippines, provided it is consistent with their
RederickReciomarried Grace Garcia (petitioner), respective national laws
a Filipina, in Cabanatuan City. In their
application for a marriage license, Rederick was 6. Before a foreign divorce decree can be
declared as "single" and "Filipino. Not long recognized by our courts, the party pleading it
afterm however, the couple was living separately must prove thedivorce as a fact and
in Australia without prior judicial dissolution of demonstrate its conformity to the foreign law
their marriage. allowing it. Presentation solely of the divorce
In 1998, Grace filed a Complaint for decree is insufficient.
Declaration of Nullity of Marriage against
Rederick on the ground of bigamy for he Divorce as a Question of Fact
allegedly had a prior subsisting marriage at the 7. Before a foreign judgment is given
time he married her in 1994. She claimed that presumptive evidentiary value, the document
she learned of his marriage to Editha Samson must first be
only in November, 1997. presented and admitted in evidence. A divorce
Rederick contended that his first obtained abroad is proven by the divorce decree
marriage to Editha Samson had been validly itself. Indeed the best evidence of a judgment is
dissolved by a divorce decree obtained in the judgment itself. The decree purports to be a
written act or record of an act of an official body while the second suspends it and leaves the
or tribunal of a foreign country. bond in full force.

Proof of Foreign Divorce Legal Capacity to Remarry

8. Under Sections 24 and 25 of Rule 132 of the 15. Recio presented a decree nisi or an
Rules of Court, a writing or document may be interlocutory decree -- a conditional or
proven asa public or official record of a provisional judgment of divorce. It is in effect the
foreign country by either (1) an official same as a separation from bed and board,
publication or (2) a copy thereof attested by the although an absolute divorce may follow after
officer having legal custody of the document. If the lapse of the prescribed period during which
the record is not kept in the Philippines, such no reconciliation is effected.
copy must be (a) accompanied by a certificate
issued by the proper diplomatic or consular 16. The Australian divorce decree contained a
officer in the Philippine foreign service stationed restriction that reads: “A party to a marriage who
in the foreign country in which the record is kept marries again before this decree becomes
and (b) authenticated by the seal of his office. absolute (unless the other party has died)
commits the offence of bigamy”
9. In this case however, when the divorce
decree of 1989 was submitted in evidence, 17. The divorce obtained by respondent appears
counsel for to be restricted. It did not absolutely establish his
petitioner objected, not to its admissibility, but legal capacity to remarry according to his
only to the fact that it had not been registered in national law. Hence, the trial court erroneously
the Local Civil Registry of Cabanatuan City. assumed that the Australian divorce ipso facto
Petitioner's failure to object properly rendered restored respondent's capacity to remarry. In
the divorce decree admissible as a written act of other words, in the absence of sufficient proof, it
the Family Court of Sydney, Australia cannot be concluded that respondent Recio was
legally capacitated to marry Grace Garcia on
Burden of Proving Foreign Laws January 12, 1994.
10. The burden of proof lies with "the party who 18. The legal capacity to contract marriage is
alleges the existence of a fact or thing determined by the national law of the party
necessary in the prosecution or defense of an concerned.
19. The certificate mentioned in Article 21 of
11. Since the divorce was a defense raised by the Family Code would have been sufficient to
respondent RederickRecio, the burden of establish the legal capacity of respondent, had
proving the pertinent Australian law validating it he duly presented it in court. A duly
falls squarely upon him. authenticated and admitted certificate is prima
facie evidence of legal capacity to marry on the
12. Philippine courts cannot take judicial part of the alien applicant for a marriage license
notice of foreign laws. Like any other facts,
they must be alleged and proved. Australian Bigamy
marital laws are not among those matters that 20. The court cannot grant Garcia's prayer to
judges are supposed to know by reason of their declare her marriage to Recio null and void on
judicial function. the ground of bigamy. After all, it may turn out
that under Australian law, he was really
Types of Divorce capacitated to marry her as a direct result of the
13. In its strict legal sense, divorce means the divorce decree.
legal dissolution of a lawful union for a cause
arising after marriage. 21. The most judicious course is to remand the
case to the trial court to receive evidence, if any,
14. Divorces are of different types. The two which show Recio's legal capacity to marry
basic ones are (1) absolute divorce or a Garcia. Failing in that, then the court a quo may
vinculo declare a nullity of the parties' marriage on the
matrimoniiand (2) limited divorce or a mensa ground of bigamy, there being already in
et thoro. The first kind terminates the marriage, evidence two existing marriage certificates,
which were both obtained in the Philippines, one
in Malabon, Metro Manila dated March 1, 1987 2. Pursuant to his national law, Richard Upton is
and the other, in Cabanatuan City dated January no longer the husband of Alice van Dorn. He
12, 1994 would have no standing to sue in the case below
as Alice's husband entitled to exercise control
over conjugal assets. As he is bound by the
Marriage outside the Philippines – Foreign Decision of his own country's Court, which
Divorce validly exercised jurisdiction over him, and
whose decision he does not repudiate, he is
Case No. 15 - VAN DORN V. ROMILLO estopped by his own representation before said
Court from asserting his right over the alleged
Facts: Alice Reyes, a Filipino citizen, and conjugal property. He should not continue to be
Richard Upton, an American citizen, were one of her heirs with possible rights to conjugal
married in Hongkong in 1972. After the property. She should not be discriminated
marriage, they resided in the Philippines and against in her own country if the ends of justice
begot two children. are to be served.
Subsequently, the were divorced in Nevada,
United States, in 1982. Alice re-married in
Nevada, this time to Theodore Van Dorn.
Richard Upton filed suit against Alice Case No. 16 - PILAPIL V. IBAY-SOMERA, 174
Van Dorn stating that her business in Ermita, SCRA 653
Manila (the Galleon Shop) is conjugal property
of the parties, and asking that she be ordered to Facts: Imelda ManalaysayPilapil, a Filipino
render an accounting of that business, and that citizen and Erich EkkehardGeiling, a German
he be declared with right to manage the conjugal national, were married in Germany. The couple
property. lived for a while in Manila and had a daughter
Alice van Dorn moved to dismiss the case on together
the ground that the cause of action is barred by After about 3 and ½ years of marriage, the
previous judgment in the divorce proceedings husband initiated divorce proceedings in
before the Nevada Court wherein Upton had Germany. The German court granted a divorce
acknowledged that they had "no community decree.
property" as of 1982. The lower court denied the Five months after the issuance of the
Motion to Dismiss on the ground that the divorce decree, the Geiling filed two complaints
property involved is located in the Philippines so for adultery against Pilapil before the City Fiscal
that the Divorce Decree has no bearing in the of Manila alleging that, while still married to him,
case. The denial is now the subject of this Pilapil had an affair with 2 men (William Chia
Certiorari proceeding. Upton contends that Alice and James Chua). Information was filed against
cannot rely on the divorce decree obtained in Pilapil and the two men.
Nevada as the divorce is not valid and binding in Pilapil moved unsuccessfully to have the
this jurisdiction, the same being contrary to local criminal case dismissed. The present petition is
law and public policy. anchored on the main ground that the court is
without jurisdiction "to try and decide the charge
Held: of adultery, which is a private offense that
1. Owing to the nationality principle embodied in cannot be prosecuted de officio, since the
Article 15 of the Civil Code, only Philippine purported complainant, a foreigner, does not
nationalsare covered by the policy against qualify as an offended spouse having obtained a
absolute divorces the same being considered final divorce decree under his national law prior
contrary to our concept of public policy and to his filing the criminal complaint."
morality. However, aliens may obtain divorces
abroad, which may berecognized in the Held:
Philippines, provided they are valid Prosecution for Adultery
according to their national law. In this case, The law specifically provides that in
the divorce in Nevada released Richard Upton prosecutions for adultery and concubinage the
from the marriage from the standards of person who can legally file the complaint should
American law, under which divorce dissolves the be the offended spouse, and nobody else.
Status as offended spouse
1. Article 344 of the Revised Penal Code thus The RTC denied the petition. In ruling that the
presupposes that the marital relationship is divorce obtained by Manalo in Japan should not
still be
subsisting at the time of the institution of the recognized, it opined that, based on Article 15 of
criminal action for adultery. This is a logical the New Civil Code, the Philippine law “does not
consequence since the raison d'etre of said afford Filipinos the right to file for a divorce,
provision of law would be absent where the whether they are in the country or living abroad,
supposed if they are married to Filipinos or to foreigners, or
offended party had ceased to be the spouse of if they celebrated their marriage in the
the alleged offender at the time of the filing of Philippines or in another country” and that
the criminal case unless Filipinos “are naturalized as citizens of
another country, Philippine laws shall have
2. Such status or capacity (as an offended control over issues related to Filipinos' family
spouse) must exist as of the time he initiates the rights and duties.”
action. Thus, the person who initiates the On appeal, the Court of Appeals (CA)
adultery case must be an offended spouse, overturned the RTC decision. It held that Article
and by this is meant thathe is still married to 26 of the Family Code is applicable even if it
the accused spouse, at the time of the filing was Manalo who filed for divorce against her
of the complaint. Japanese husband. Cited as similar to this case
was Van Dorn vs. Judge Romillo, Jr.8 where the
3. Hence, Geiling, being no longer the husband marriage between a foreigner and a Filipino was
of Pilapil, had no legal standing to commence dissolved through a divorce filed abroad by the
the latter.
adultery case under the imposture that he was The OSG filed a motion for reconsideration,but it
the offended spouse at the time he filed suit. was denied. Hence, this petition.

4. The allegation that he could not have brought Held:

this case before the decree of divorce for lack of Divorce in the Philippine jurisdiction
knowledge, even if true, is of no legal 1. Divorce, the legal dissolution of a lawful union
significance or consequence in this case. There for a cause arising after marriage, are of two
would no longer be a family nor marriage vows types: (1) absolute divorce or a vincula
to protect once a dissolution of the marriage is matrimonii, which terminates the marriage, and
decreed. Neither would there be a danger of (2) limited divorce or amensa et tharo, which
introducing spurious heirs into the family, which suspends it and leaves the bond in full force.
is said to be one of the reasons for the particular
formulation of our law on adultery, since there 2. In this jurisdiction, the following rules exist:
would thenceforth be no spousal relationship to (a) Philippine law does not provide for absolute
speak of. The severance of the marital bond had divorce; hence, our courts cannot grant it.
the effect of dissociating the former spouses (b) Consistent with Articles 15 and 17 of the
from each other, hence the actuations of one New Civil Code, the marital bond between two
would not affect or cast obloquy on the other. Filipinos cannot be dissolved even by an
absolute divorce obtained abroad.
Case No. 17 - REPUBLIC V. MANALO, G.R. (c) An absolute divorce obtained abroad by a
No. 221029, April 24, 2018 couple, who are both aliens, may be recognized
Facts: On January 10, 2012, Marelyn Tanedo the Philippines, provided it is consistent with
Manalo (Manalo) filed a petition for cancellation their respective national laws.
of entry of marriage pursuant to Rule 108 of the (d) In mixed marriages involving a Filipino and a
Revised Rules of Court by virtue of a judgment foreigner, the former is allowed to contract a
of divorce rendered by a Japanese court. subsequent marriage in case the absolute
The RTC of Dagupan City set the case for initial divorce is validly obtained abroad by the alien
hearing. Manalo moved to amend the petition as spouse capacitating him or her to remarry.
one for recognition and enforcement of a foreign
judgment. Article 26, Family Code
3. As modified, Article 26 now states:
Art. 26. All marriages solemnized outside the Philippines is implied from Our previous rulings.
Philippines, in accordance with the laws in force In Van Dorn vs. Romillowas decided before the
in Family Code took into effect. There, the court
the country where they were solemnized, and held that an alien spouse of a Filipino is bound
valid there as such, shall also be valid in this by a divorce decree obtained abroad, and
country,except those prohibited under Articles dismissed the alien divorcee's Philippine suit for
35(1), (4), (5) and (6), 36, 37 and 38. accounting of alleged post-divorce conjugal
Where a marriage between a Filipino citizen and property and rejected his submission that the
a foreigner is validly celebrated and a divorce is foreign divorce (obtained by the Filipino spouse)
thereafter validly obtained abroad by the alien is not valid in this jurisdiction. In Fujiki vs.
spouse capacitating him or her to remarry, the Marinay, the Filipino wife, with the help of her
Filipino spouse shall likewise have capacity to first husband, who is a Japanese national, was
remarry under Philippine law. able to obtain a judgment from Japan's family
court, which declared the marriage between her
4. Paragraph 2 of Article 26 authorizes our and her second husband, who is a Japanese
courts to adopt the effects of a foreign divorce national, void on the ground of bigamy. The
decree court held that a husband or wife of a prior
precisely because the Philippines does not allow marriage can file a petition to recognize a
divorce. Philippine courts cannot try the case on foreign judgment nullifying the subsequent
the merits because it is tantamount to trying a marriage between his or her spouse and a
divorce case. Under the principles of comity, our foreign citizen on the ground of bigamy. (see
jurisdictionrecognizes a valid divorce obtained also Dacasin vs. Dacasin andMedina vs. Koike)
by a spouse of foreign nationality, but the legal
effects thereof, e. g., on custody, care and 8. There is no compelling reason to deviate from
support of the children or property relations of the above-mentioned rulings. When this Court
the Spouses, must still be determined by our recognized a foreign divorce decree that was
courts. initiated and obtained by the Filipino spouse and
extended its legal effects on the issues of child
5. In Republic v. Orbecido III (2005), this Court custody and property relation, it should not stop
concluded that Paragraph 2 of Article 26 applies short in likewise acknowledging that one of the
to a case where, at the time of the celebration of usual and necessary consequences of absolute
the marriage, the parties were both Filipino divorce is the right to remarry. Indeed, there is
citizens, but later on, one of them acquired no longer a mutual obligation to live together
foreign citizenship by naturalization, initiated a and observe fidelity. When the marriage tie is
divorce proceeding, and obtained a favorable severed and ceased to exist, the civil status and
decree. The court stated therein that “the the domestic relation of the former spouses
reckoning point is not the citizenship of the change as both of them are freed from the
parties at the time of the celebration of the marital bond.
marriage, but their citizenship at the time a valid
divorce isobtained abroad by the alien spouse Interpretation of Article 26 should give effect
capacitating the latter to remarry. to the intent behind the provision
9. The dissent is of the view that, under the
Article 26 applies even if it is the Filipino nationality principle, Manalo's personal status is
spouse who filed for divorce from the alien subject to Philippine law, which prohibits
spouse absolute divorce. Hence, the divorce decree
6. Now, the Court is tasked to resolve whether, which she obtained under Japanese law cannot
under Article 26, a Filipino citizen has the be given effect, as she is, without dispute, a
capacity to remarry under Philippine law after national not of Japan, but of the Philippines.
initiating a divorce proceeding abroad and
obtaining a favorable judgment against his or 10. We beg to differ. Paragraph 2 of Article 26
her alien spouse who is capacitated to remarry. speaks of “a divorce x xx validly obtained abroad
We rule in the affirmative. by thealien spouse capacitating him or her to
remarry. ”Based on a clear and plain reading of
7. The fact that a validly obtained foreign divorce the provision, itonly requires that there be a
initiated by the Filipino spouse can be divorce validly obtained abroad. The letter of the
recognized and given legal effects in the law does not demand that the alien spouse
should be the one who initiated the proceeding are constitutional.
wherein the divorce decree was granted. It does
not distinguish whether the Filipino spouse is the 14. While the Congress is allowed a wide
petitioner or the respondent in the foreign leeway in providing for a valid classification, the
divorce proceeding. Verbalegis non deference stops where the classification violates
estrecedendum, or from the words of a statute a fundamental right, or prejudices persons
there should be no departure. accorded special protection by the Constitution.
If a legislative classification impermissibly
11. Assuming that the word “obtained” should be interferes with the exercise of a fundamental
interpreted to mean that the divorce proceeding right or operates to the peculiar disadvantage of
must be actually initiated by the alien spouse, a suspect class strict judicial scrutiny is
still, the Court will not follow the letter of the required since it is presumed unconstitutional,
statute when to do so would depart from the true and the burden is upon the government to prove
intent of the legislature or would otherwise yield that the classification is necessary to achieve a
conclusions inconsistent with the general compelling state interest and that it is the least
purpose of the act. Laws have ends to achieve, restrictive means to protect such interest.
and statutes should be so construed as not to
defeat but to carry out such ends and purposes. 15. “Fundamental rights” whose infringement
leads to strict scrutiny under the equal protection
12. Paragraph 2 of Article 26 is a corrective clause are those basic liberties explicitly or
measure to address an anomaly where the implicitly guaranteed in the Constitution. It
Filipino spouse is tied to the marriage while the includes the right to marry. On the other hand,
foreign spouse is free to marry under the laws of what constitutes compelling state interest is
his or her country. Whether the Filipino spouse measured by the scale of rights and powers
initiated the foreign divorce proceeding or not, a arrayed in the Constitution and calibrated by
favorable decree dissolving the marriage bond history. It essentially involves a public right or
and capacitating his or her alien spouse to interest that, because of its primacy, overrides
remarry will have the same result: the Filipino individual rights, and allows the former to take
spouse will effectively be without a husband or precedence over the latter.
wife. A Filipino who initiated a foreign divorce
proceeding is in the same place and in ‘like 16. The differentiation in Paragraph 2 of Article
circumstance as a Filipino who is at the 26 is arbitrary. There is no real and substantial
receiving end of an alien initiated proceeding. difference between a Filipino who initiated a
Therefore, the subject provision should not foreign divorce proceedings and a Filipino who
make a distinction. In both instance, it is obtained a divorce decree upon the instance of
extended as a means to recognize the residual his or her alien spouse. In the eyes of the
effect of the foreign divorce decree on Filipinos Philippine and foreign laws, both are considered
whose marital ties to their alien spouses are as Filipinos who have the same rights and
severed by operation of the latter's national law. obligations in an alien land. The circumstances
surrounding them are alike. Were it not for
Nationality rule cannot be invoked if it will Paragraph 2 of Article 26, both are still married
lead to unequal application of the law to their foreigner spouses who are no longer
13. Conveniently invoking the nationality their wives/husbands. Hence, to make a
principle is erroneous. Such principle, found distinction between them based merely on the
under Article 15 of the Civil Code, is not an superficial difference of whether they initiated
absolute and unbending rule. ln fact, the mere the divorce proceedings or not is utterly unfair.
existence of Paragraph 2 of Article 26 is a Indeed, the treatment gives undue favor to one
testament that the State may provide for an and unjustly discriminate against the other.
exception thereto. Moreover, blind adherence to
the nationality principle must be disallowed if it Divorce is not prohibited under the 1987
would cause unjust discrimination and Constitution; Divorce Law history in the
oppression to certain classes of individuals Philippines
whose rights are equally protected by law. The 17. The 1987 Constitution expresses that
courts have the duty to enforce the laws of marriage, as an inviolable social institution, is
divorce as written by the Legislature only if they the foundation of the family and shall be
protected by the State. Nevertheless, it was not
meant to be a general prohibition on divorce obligated to defend, among others, the right of
because Commissioner Jose Luis Martin C. children to special protection from all forms of
Gascon, in response to a question by Father neglect, abuse, cruelty, exploitation, and other
Joaquin G Bernas during the deliberations of the conditions prejudicial to their development. To
1986 Constitutional Commission, was Our mind, the State cannot effectively enforce
categorical about this point. these obligations if We limit the application of
Paragraph 2 of Article 26 only to those foreign
18. Notably, a law on absolute divorce is not divorce initiated by the alien spouse. It is not
new in our country. Effective March 11, 1917, amiss to point that the women and children are
Philippine courts could grant an absolute divorce almost always thehelpless victims of all forms of
on the grounds of adultery on the part of the wife domestic abuse and violence.
or concubinageon the part of the husband by
virtue of Act No. 2710 of the Philippine Japanese law on divorce must be proved
Legislature. On March 25, 1943, pursuant to the 21. If the opposing party fails to properly object,
authority conferred upon him by the as in this case, the divorce decree is rendered
Commander-in-Chief of the Imperial Japanese admissible as a written act of the foreign court.
Forces in the Philippines and with the approval As it appears, the existence of the divorce
of the latter, the Chairman of the Philippine decree was not denied by the OSG; neither was
Executive Commission promulgated an EC. No. the jurisdiction of the divorce court impeached
141 (“New Divorce Law "), which repealed Act nor the validity of its proceedings challenged on
No. 2710 and provided eleven grounds for the ground of collusion, fraud, or clear mistake
absolute divorce, such as intentional or of fact or law, albeit an opportunity to do so.
unjustified desertion continuously for at least
one year prior to the filing of the action, slander 22. Nonetheless, the Japanese law on divorce
by deed or gross insult by one spouse against must still be proved. It is well-settled in our
the other to such an extent as to make further jurisdiction that our courts cannot take judicial
living together impracticable, and a spouse's notice of foreign laws. The burden of proof lies
incurable insanity. When the Philippines was with the “party who alleges the existence of a
liberated and the Commonwealth Government fact or thing necessary in the prosecution or
was restored, it ceased to have force and effect defense of an action. In civil cases, plaintiffs
and Act No. 2710 again prevailed. From August have the burden of proving the material
30, 1950, upon the effectivity of Republic Act allegations of the complaint when those are
No. 386 or the New Civil Code, an absolute denied by the answer; and defendants have the
divorce obtained by Filipino citizens, whether burden of proving the material allegations in
here or abroad, is no longer recognized. their answer when they introduce new matters.

19. Through the years, there has been constant 23. Since the divorce was raised by Manalo, the
clamor from various sectors of the Philippine burden of proving the pertinent Japanese law
society to re-institute absolute divorce. As a validating it, as well as her former husband's
matter of fact, in the current 17th Congress, H.B. capacity to remarry, fall squarely upon her.
No. 7303 entitled “AnAct Instituting Absolute Japanese laws on persons and family relations
Divorce and Dissolution of Marriage in the are not among those matters that Filipino judges
Philippines " or the Absolute DivorceAct of 2018 are supposed to know by reason of their judicial
was submitted by the House Committee on function.
Population and Family Relations on February
28, 2018. It was approved on March 19, 2018 on Grounds for Void Marriages – Lack of
Third Reading. Formal/Essential Requirements

20. The declared State policy that marriage, as Case No. 18 - REPUBLIC V. CA AND
an inviolable social institution, is the foundation ANGELINA CASTRO, 236 SCRA 257
of the family and shall be protected by the State,
should not be read in total isolation but must be Facts: Angelina Castro and Edwin Cardenas
harmonized with other constitutional provisions. were married in a civil ceremony performed by
Aside from strengthening the solidarity of the Judge Pablo M. Malvar, City Court Judge of
Filipino family, the State is equally mandated to Pasay City. The marriage was celebrated
actively promote its total development. It is also without the knowledge of Castro's parents.
Defendant Cardenas personally attended to the or entry of a specified tenor is found to exist
processing of the documents required for the in the records ofhis office, accompanied by a
celebration of the marriage, including the certificate as above provided, is admissible
procurement of the marriage license. as evidence that therecords of his contain no
It was only when Castro discovered she such record or entry. (Section 29, Rule 132 of
was pregnant, that the couple decided to live Rules of Court)
together. However, their cohabitation lasted only
for four months. Thereafter, the couple parted 4. As custodians of public documents, civil
ways. The baby was adopted by the brother of registrars are public officers charged with
Angelina, with the consent of Edwin. the duty,inter alia, of maintaining a register
The baby was now in the United States. book where they are required to enter all
Desiring to follow her daughter, Angelina wanted applications formarriage licenses.
to put in order her marital status before leaving
for the States. She thus consulted a lawyer 5. The certification of "due search and
regarding the possible annulment of her inability to find" issued by the civil registrar
marriage. Through her lawyer's efforts, they of Pasig
discovered that there was no marriage license enjoys probative value, he being the officer
issued to Cardenas prior to the celebration of charged under the law to keep a record of all
their marriage. As proof, Angelina Castro offered datarelative to the issuance of a marriage
in evidence a certification from the Civil Register license.
of Pasig.
The trial court denied the petition. It held
that the above certification was inadequate to Grounds for Void Marriages –
establish the alleged non-issuance of a marriage Bigamous/Polygamous Marriages
license prior to the celebration of the marriage
between the parties. Case No. 19 – PEOPLE v. NOLASCO
The appellate court reversed the
decision of the trial court. It declared the FACTS:
marriage between the
contracting parties null and void and directed the
Civil Registrar of Pasig to cancel the subject Nolasco, a seaman, first met Janet Monica
marriage contract. Parker in a bar in England. After that, she lived
with him on his ship for 6 months. After his
Held: seaman's contract has expired, he brought her
Absence of a Valid Marriage License to his hometown in San Jose, Antique. They got
(Essential Requisite) makes Marriage Void married in January 1982.
Ab Initio
1. The law provides that no marriage shall be After the marriage celebration, he got another
solemnized without a marriage license first employment contract and left the province. In
issuedby a local civil registrar. Being one of January 1983, Nolasco received a letter from his
the essential requisites of a valid marriage, mother that 15 days after Janet gave birth to
absence of alicense would render the their son, she left. He cut short his contract to
marriage void ab initio. find Janet. He returned home in November
2. The SC held that, under the circumstances
of the case, the documentary and testimonial He did so by securing another contract which
evidence presented by private respondent England is one of its port calls. He wrote several
Castro sufficiently established the absence letters to the bar where he and Janet first met,
of the but all were returned to him. He claimed that he
subject marriage license.Certification of inquired from his friends but they too had no
Local Civil Registrar Adequate to Prove Non- news about Janet. In 1988, Nolasco filed before
issuance of License the RTC of Antique a petition for the declaration
of presumptive death of his wife Janet.
3. A written statement signed by an officer
having custody of an official record or by his RTC granted the petition. The Republic through
deputy,that after diligent search, no record the Solicitor-General, appealed to the CA,
contending that the trial court erred in declaring Grounds for Void Marriages – Pyschological
Janet presumptively dead because Nolasco had Incapacity
failed to show that there existed a well-founded
belief for such declaration. CA affirmed the trial
Case No. 20 – Santos v. CA
court's decision.

Whether or not Nolasco has a well-founded Leouel Santos, a member of the Army, met Julia
belief that his wife is already dead. Rosario Bedia in Iloilo City. In September 1986,
they got married. The couple latter lived with
RULING: Julia’s parents. Julia gave birth to their son in
No. Nolasco failed to prove that he had complied 1987. Their marriage, however, was marred by
with the third requirement under the Article 41 of the frequent interference of Julia’s parents, as
the Family Code, the existence of a "well- averred by Leouel. The couple also occasionally
founded belief" that Janet is already dead. quarreled about as to, among other things, when
should they start living independently from
Under Article 41, the time required for the Julia’s parents. In 1988, Julia went to the US to
presumption to arise has been shortened to 4 work as a nurse despite Leouel’s opposition. 7
years; however, there is a need for judicial months later, she and Leouel got to talk and she
declaration of presumptive death to enable the promised to return home in 1989. She never
spouse present to marry. However, Article 41 went home that year. In 1990, Leouel got the
imposes a stricter standard before declaring chance to be in the US due to a military training.
presumptive death of one spouse. It requires a During his stay, he desperately tried to locate his
"well-founded belief" that the absentee is wife but to no avail. Leouel, in an effort to at
already dead before a petition for declaration of least have his wife come home, filed a petition to
presumptive death can be granted. nullify their marriage due to Julia’s alleged
psychological incapacity. Leouel asserted that
In the case at bar, the Court found Nolasco's due to Julia’s failure to return home or at least
alleged attempt to ascertain about Janet's communicate with him even with all his effort
whereabouts too sketchy to form the basis of a constitutes psychological incapacity. Julia filed
reasonable or well-founded belief that she was an opposition; she said that it is Leouel who is
already dead. incompetent. The prosecutor ascertained that
there is no collusion between the two. Leouel’s
Nolasco, after returning from his employment, petition is however denied by the lower and
instead of seeking help of local authorities or of appellate court.
the British Embassy, secured another contract to ISSUE: Whether or not psychological incapacity
London. Janet's alleged refusal to give any is attendant to the case at bar.
information about her was too convenient an HELD: No. Before deciding on the case, the SC
excuse to justify his failure to locate her. He did noted that the Family Code did not define the
not explain why he took him 9 months to finally term “psychological incapacity”, which is
reached San Jose after he asked leave from his adopted from the Catholic Canon Law. But
captain. He refused to identify his friends whom basing it on the deliberations of the Family Code
he inquired from. When the Court asked Revision Committee, the provision in PI,
Nolasco about the returned letters, he said he adopted with less specificity than expected, has
had lost them. Moreover, while he was in been designed to allow some resiliency in its
London, he did not even dare to solicit help of application. The FCRC did not give any
authorities to find his wife. examples of PI for fear that the giving of
examples would limit the applicability of the
The circumstances of Janet's departure and provision under the principle of ejusdem generis.
Nolasco's subsequent behavior make it very Rather, the FCRC would like the judge to
difficult to regard the claimed belief that Janet interpret the provision on a case-to-case basis,
was dead a well-founded one. guided by experience, the findings of experts
and researchers in psychological disciplines,
and by decisions of church tribunals which,
although not binding on the civil courts, may be
given persuasive effect since the provision was
taken from Canon Law. The term “psychological In 1986, the couple had an intense quarrel and
incapacity” defies any precise definition since as a result their relationship was estranged.
psychological causes can be of an infinite Roridel quit her work and went to live with her
variety. parents in Baguio City in 1987 and a few weeks
Article 36 of the Family Code cannot be taken later, Reynaldo left her and their child. Since
and construed independently of but must stand then he abandoned them.
in conjunction with, existing precepts in our law
on marriage. PI should refer to no less than a ISSUE: Whether or not the marriage is void on
mental (not physical) incapacity that causes a the ground of psychological incapacity.
party to be truly incognitive of the basic marital
covenants that concomitantly must be assumed HELD:
and discharged by the parties to the marriage
which (Art. 68), include their mutual obligations The marriage between Roridel and Reynaldo
to live together, observe love, respect and subsists and remains valid. What constitutes
fidelity and render help and support. The psychological incapacity is not mere showing of
intendment of the law has been to confine the irreconcilable differences and confliction
meaning of PI to the most serious cases of personalities. It is indispensable that the parties
personality disorders clearly demonstrative of an must exhibit inclinations which would not meet
utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and the essential marital responsibilites and duties
significance to the marriage. This psychological due to some psychological illness. Reynaldo’s
condition must exist at the time the marriage is action at the time of the marriage did not
celebrated. The SC also notes that PI must be manifest such characteristics that would
characterized by (a) gravity, (b) juridical comprise grounds for psychological incapacity.
antecedence, and (c) incurability. The The evidence shown by Roridel merely showed
incapacity must be grave or serious such that that she and her husband cannot get along with
the party would be incapable of carrying out the each other and had not shown gravity of the
ordinary duties required in marriage; it must be problem neither its juridical antecedence nor its
rooted in the history of the party antedating the incurability. In addition, the expert testimony by
marriage, although the overt manifestations may Dr Sison showed no incurable psychiatric
emerge only after the marriage; and it must be disorder but only incompatibility which is not
incurable or, even if it were otherwise, the cure considered as psychological incapacity.
would be beyond the means of the party
involved. The following are the guidelines as to the
In the case at bar, although Leouel stands grounds of psychological incapacity laid set forth
aggrieved, his petition must be dismissed in this case:
because the alleged PI of his wife is not clearly  burden of proof to show nullity belongs
shown by the factual settings presented. The to the plaintiff
factual settings do not come close to to the  root causes of the incapacity must be
standard required to decree a nullity of marriage. medically and clinically inclined
 such incapacity should be in existence
Case No. 21 – Republic v. Molina at the time of the marriage
 such incapacity must be grave so as to
FACTS: disable the person in complying with the
essentials of marital obligations of marriage
The case at bar challenges the decision of CA  such incapacity must be embraced in
affirming the marriage of the respondent Roridel Art. 68-71 as well as Art 220, 221 and 225 of the
Molina to Reynaldo Molina void in the ground of Family Code
psychological incapacity. The couple got  decision of the National Matrimonial
married in 1985, after a year, Reynaldo Appellate Court or the Catholic Church must be
manifested signs of immaturity and respected
irresponsibility both as husband and a father  court shall order the prosecuting
preferring to spend more time with friends whom attorney and the fiscal assigned to it to act on
he squandered his money, depends on his behalf of the state.
parents for aid and assistance and was never
honest with his wife in regard to their finances. Case No. 22 – Chi Ming Tsoi v. CA
cohabited with another woman and had been
Facts: disposing some of her properties which is
administered by Roberto. The latter claims that
Chi Ming Tsoi and Gina Lao married sometime because their marriage was void ab initio, the
on May 22, 1988. However, since their marriage declaration of such voidance is unnecessary and
and cohabitation for 10 months, the wife stated superfluous. On the other hand, Soledad insists
that there was no sexual interaction between the declaration of the nullity of marriage not for
them. This claim was also affirmed by the the purpose of remarriage, but in order to
husband. Frustrated, Gina filed an annulment provide a basis for the separation and
case against her husband on the ground of distribution of properties acquired during the
psychological incapacity for being unable to fulfill marriage.
the basic marital obligations. RTC granted the
annulment and was also affirmed by the CA. ISSUE: Whether or not a petition for judicial
Hence, the petition. declaration should only be filed for purposes of
Whether or not the inability of the husband to
have sexual intercourse with his wife for more The declaration of the nullity of marriage is
than 10 months constitute a ground for indeed required for purposed of remarriage.
annulment by reason of psychological However, it is also necessary for the protection
incapacity. of the subsequent spouse who believed in good
faith that his or her partner was not lawfully
Ruling: married marries the same. With this, the said
person is freed from being charged with bigamy.
One of the basic marital obligations under the
Family Code is “To procreate children based on When a marriage is declared void ab initio, law
the universal principle that procreation of states that final judgment shall provide for the
children through sexual cooperation is the basic liquidation, partition and distribution of the
end of marriage.” Constant non-fulfillment of this properties of the spouses, the custody and
obligation will finally destroy the integrity and support of the common children and the delivery
wholeness of the marriage. Sexual intimacy is a of their presumptive legitimes, unless such
gift and a participation in the mystery of creation. matters had been adjudicated in previous
judicial proceedings. Soledad’s prayer for
The prolonged and senseless refusal of the separation of property will simply be the
husband to fulfill such marital obligation is necessary consequence of the judicial
equivalent to psychological incapacity. declaration of absolute nullity of their marriage.
Hence, the petitioner’s suggestion that for their
properties be separated, an ordinary civil action
Hereby, SC affirmed CA’s ruling. has to be instituted for that purpose is baseless.
The Family Code has clearly provided the
Declaration of Nullity of Marriage effects of the declaration of nullity of marriage,
Case No. 23 – Domingo v. CA one of which is the separation of property
according to the regime of property relations
FACTS: governing them.

Soledad Domingo, married with Roberto Legal Separation - Concept

Domingo in 1976, filed a petition for the Case No. 24 – Lapuz v. Eufemio
declaration of nullity of marriage and separation
of property. She did not know that Domingo had Facts:
been previously married to Emerlinda dela Paz Carmen Lapuz-Sy filed a petition for legal
in 1969. She came to know the previous separation against Eufemio Eufemio on August
marriage when the latter filed a suit of bigamy 1953. They were married civilly on September
against her. Furthermore, when she came 21, 1934 and canonically after nine days. They
home from Saudi during her one-month leave had lived together as husband and wife
from work, she discovered that Roberto continuously without any children until 1943
when her husband abandoned her. They and determined in a proper action for partition by
acquired properties during their marriage. either the appellee or by the heirs of the
Petitioner then discovered that her husband appellant.
cohabited with a Chinese woman named Go
Hiok on or about 1949. She prayed for the Grounds for Legal Separation -
issuance of a decree of legal separation, which Abandonment
among others, would order that the defendant
Eufemio should be deprived of his share of the Case No. 25- De La Cruz v. De La Cruz
conjugal partnership profits.
Eufemio counterclaimed for the declaration of Estrella, the plaintiff, and Severino, the
nullity of his marriage with Lapuz-Sy on the defendant were married in Bacolod and
ground of his prior and subsisting marriage with begotten 6 children. During their coverture, they
Go Hiok. Trial proceeded and the parties acquired several parcels of land and were
adduced their respective evidence. However, engage in various businesses. The plaintiff filed
before the trial could be completed, respondent an action against her husband for the separation
already scheduled to present surrebuttal of their properties. She further alleged that her
evidence, petitioner died in a vehicular accident husband aside from abandoning her, also
on May 1969. Her counsel duly notified the mismanaged their conjugal properties. On the
court of her death. Eufemio moved to dismiss other hand, Severino contended that he had
the petition for legal separation on June 1969 on always visited the conjugal home and had
the grounds that the said petition was filed provided support for the family despite his
beyond the one-year period provided in Article frequent absences when he was in Manila to
102 of the Civil Code and that the death of supervise the expansion of their business.
Carmen abated the action for legal separation. Since 1955, he had not slept in the conjugal
Petitioner’s counsel moved to substitute the dwelling instead stayed in his office at Texboard
deceased Carmen by her father, Macario Factory although he paid short visits in the
Lapuz. conjugal home, which was affirmed by Estrella.
The latter suspected that her husband had a
ISSUE: Whether the death of the plaintiff, before mistress named Nenita Hernandez, hence, the
final decree in an action for legal separation, urgency of the separation of property for the fear
abate the action and will it also apply if the that her husband might squander and dispose
action involved property rights. the conjugal assets in favor of the concubine.

HELD: ISSUE: WON there has been abandonment on

the part of the husband and WON there has
An action for legal separation is abated by the been an abused of his authority as administrator
death of the plaintiff, even if property rights are of the conjugal partnership.
involved. These rights are mere effects of
decree of separation, their source being the HELD:
decree itself; without the decree such rights do
not come into existence, so that before the The husband has never desisted in the
finality of a decree, these claims are merely fulfillment of his marital obligations and support
rights in expectation. If death supervenes during of the family. To be legally declared as to have
the pendency of the action, no decree can be abandoned the conjugal home, one must have
forthcoming, death producing a more radical and willfully and with intention of not coming back
definitive separation; and the expected and perpetual separation. There must be real
consequential rights and claims would abandonment and not mere separation. In fact,
necessarily remain unborn. the husband never failed to give monthly
The petition of Eufemio for declaration of nullity financial support as admitted by the wife. This
is moot and academic and there could be no negates the intention of coming home to the
further interest in continuing the same after her conjugal abode. The plaintiff even testified that
demise, that automatically dissolved the the husband “paid short visits” implying more
questioned union. Any property rights acquired than one visit. Likewise, as testified by the
by either party as a result of Article 144 of the manager of one of their businesses, the wife has
Civil Code of the Philippines 6 could be resolved been drawing a monthly allowance of P1,000-
1,500 that was given personally by the abandonment and not mere separation. In fact,
defendant or the witness himself. the husband never failed to give monthly
financial support as admitted by the wife. This
SC held that lower court erred in holding that negates the intention of coming home to the
mere refusal or failure of the husband as conjugal abode. The plaintiff even testified that
administrator of the conjugal partnership to the husband “paid short visits” implying more
inform the wife of the progress of the business than one visit. Likewise, as testified by the
constitutes abuse of administration. In order for manager of one of their businesses, the wife has
abuse to exist, there must be a willful and utter been drawing a monthly allowance of P1,000-
disregard of the interest of the partnership 1,500 that was given personally by the
evidenced by a repetition of deliberate acts or defendant or the witness himself.
omissions prejudicial to the latter.
SC held that lower court erred in holding that
Grounds for the denial of the Petition for mere refusal or failure of the husband as
Legal Separation - Condonation administrator of the conjugal partnership to
inform the wife of the progress of the business
Case No. 26 – Ocampo v. Florenciano constitutes abuse of administration. In order for
abuse to exist, there must be a willful and utter
FACTS: disregard of the interest of the partnership
Estrella, the plaintiff, and Severino, the evidenced by a repetition of deliberate acts or
defendant were married in Bacolod and omissions prejudicial to the latter.
begotten 6 children. During their coverture, they
acquired several parcels of land and were Grounds for the denial of the Petition for
engage in various businesses. The plaintiff filed Legal Separation - Consent
an action against her husband for the separation
of their properties. She further alleged that her Case No. 27 – People v. Sensano
husband aside from abandoning her, also
mismanaged their conjugal properties. On the FACTS:
other hand, Severino contended that he had Ursula Sensano and Mariano Ventura were married and
always visited the conjugal home and had had a child whom the latter allegedlyabandoned when
provided support for the family despite his he went and stayed in Cagayan for three years without
frequent absences when he was in Manila to letters or financial supportto the former who worked hard
supervise the expansion of their business. for herself and her son until she met the accused
Since 1955, he had not slept in the conjugal Marcelo Ramoswho later took care of them.Ventura
dwelling instead stayed in his office at Texboard charged Sensano and Ramos for adultery, found by the
Factory although he paid short visits in the court guilty of the crime chargedand served their
conjugal home, which was affirmed by Estrella. sentence.Sensano after serving her sentenced and
The latter suspected that her husband had a leaving her paramour made steps to reconcile with and
mistress named Nenita Hernandez, hence, the goback to her husband but to no avail - She and her
urgency of the separation of property for the fear child were abandoned for the second time. Thus,they
that her husband might squander and dispose went back to her co-accused Ramos.Despite the
the conjugal assets in favor of the concubine. knowledge that she resumed living with her
codefendant, her husband did nothing toassert his right
ISSUE: WON there has been abandonment on as her spouse. Instead, he went abroad for seven years
the part of the husband and WON there has and presumably hadcompletely abandoned
been an abused of his authority as administrator them..When Ventura returned home, he charged
of the conjugal partnership. Sensano of adultery for the second time in order to
obtaindivorce under Act No. 2710.
The husband has never desisted in the Whether or not Ramos can file adultery against his
fulfillment of his marital obligations and support spouse for the second time being the offendedparty.
of the family. To be legally declared as to have
abandoned the conjugal home, one must have HELD:
willfully and with intention of not coming back No. The Court concluded that the evidence in this case
and perpetual separation. There must be real as well as the conduct of Ramos showedthat he
consented to the adulterous relations existing between After having been summoned, the defendants
the accused and former co-defendant. He is therefore repeatedly asked the court for extension of filing
under the law not authorized to institute the criminal for an answer which eventually resulted to being
proceeding. Article 344 of the Revised Penal
declared in default. Five months after the
Code, paragraphs 1 and 2, are as follows:
Prosecution of the crimes of adultery, concubinage, petition was filed the court granted the issuance
seduction, abduction, rape and acts oflasciviousness of a Decree of Legal Separation and declared
. the properties in question as conjugal properties
— of Alanis and Pacete which were ordered
The crimes of adultery and concubinage shall not be forfeited in favor of Alanis. The court also
prosecuted exceptupon a complaint filed by the offended nullified his marriage to Clarita.
spouse.The offended party cannot institute criminal
prosecution without including both the guiltyparties, if
they are both alive, nor, in any case, if he shall have ISSUE:
consented or pardoned theoffenders.The court, in Whether or not the RTC gravely abused its
reversing the decision of the court aquo found the discretion in denying petitioner’s motion for
argument of the Solicitor Generalthat his seven years of extension of time to file their answer, in
acquiescence in the adultery of his wife is due to his declaring petitioners in default and in rendering
absence in the countrywhich made him impossible to its decision on March 17, 1980 which decreed
take any action against the accused, to be unmeritorious.
the legal separation of Pacete and Alanis and
Legal Separation -Procedure held to be null and void the marriage of Pacete
Case No. 28 - PACETE vs. CARIAGA to Clarita.

The issue in this petition for certiorari is whether The Civil Code provides that “no decree of legal
or not the CFI of Cotabato, Branch I, gravely separation shall be promulgated upon a
abused its discretion in denying petitioners’ stipulation of facts or by confession of
motion for extension of time to file their answer judgment. In case of non-appearance of the
and in declaring petitioners in default and in defendant, the court shall order the prosecuting
rendering its decision of which, among other attorney to inquire whether or not collusion
things, decreed the legal separation of petitioner between parties exists. If there is no collusion,
Enrico L. Pacete and private respondent the prosecuting attorney shall intervene for the
Concepcion Alanis and held to be null and void State in order to take care that the evidence for
ab initio the marriage of Enrico L. Pacete to the plaintiff is not fabricated.”
Clarita de la Concepcion. The above stated provision calling for the
Concepcion Alanis filed for the declaration of intervention of the state attorneys in case of
nullity of the marriage between her erstwhile uncontested proceedings for legal separation
husband Enrico L. Pacete and one Clarita de la (and of annulment of marriages, under Article
Concepcion, as well as for legal separation and 88) is to emphasize that marriage is more than a
accounting and separation of property. She mere contract.
averred that she was married to Pacete on 30 Article 103 of the Civil Code, now Article 58 of
April 1938 and they had a child named the Family Code, further mandates that an
Consuelo. She learned that Pacete action for legal separation must “in no case be
subsequently contracted a second marriage with tried before six months shall have elapsed since
Clarita de la Concepcion. She and Pacete the filing of the petition,” obviously in order to
acquired vast property that he fraudulently provide the parties a “cooling-off” period. In this
placed the several pieces of property either in interim, the court should take steps toward
his name and Clarita or in the names of his getting the parties to reconcile.
children with Clarita and other “dummies;” The significance of the above substantive
provisions of the law is further or underscored by
the inclusion of a provision in Rule 18 of the
Rules of Court which provides that no defaults in grounded on the said agreement are valid with
actions for annulments of marriage or for legal respect to the separation of property of the
separation. Therefore, “if the defendant in an spouses and the dissolution of the conjugal
action for annulment of marriage or for legal partnership.
separation fails to answer, the court shall order The law allows separation of property of the
the prosecuting attorney to investigate whether spouses and the dissolution of their conjugal
or not a collusion between the parties exists, partnership provided judicial sanction is secured
and if there is no collusion, to intervene for the beforehand.
State in order to see to it that the evidence It is likewise undisputed that the couple have
submitted is not fabricated.” been separated in fact for at least five years -
the wife's residence being in Manila, and the
Duties and Obligation of the Spouses husband's in the conjugal home in Bacolod City.
Case No. 29 - LACSON VS. LACSON Therefore, inasmuch as a lengthy separation
has supervened between them, the propriety of
FACTS: severing their financial and proprietary interests
Alfonso Lacson (hereinafter referred to as the is manifest.
petitioner spouse) and Carmen San Jose- Besides, this Court cannot constrain the
Lacson (hereinafter referred to as the spouses to live together, as
respondent spouse) were married on February [I]t is not within the province of the courts of this
14, 1953. To them were born four children, all country to attempt to compel one of the spouses
alive. to cohabit with, and render conjugal rights to, the
On January 9, 1963 the respondent spouse left other. .. At best such an order can be effective
the conjugal home in Santa Clara Subdivision, for no other purpose than to compel the spouse
Bacolod City, and commenced to reside in to live under the same roof; and the experience
Manila. She filed on March 12, 1963 a complaint of those countries where the courts of justice
in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court of have assumed to compel the cohabitation of
Manila (hereinafter referred to as the JDRC) for married couple shows that the policy of the
custody of all their children as well as support for practice is extremely questionable. (Arroyo v.
them and herself. Vasquez de Arroyo, 42 Phil. 54, 60).
However, the spouses, thru the assistance of However, in so approving the regime of
their respective attorneys, succeeded in separation of property of the spouses and the
reaching an amicable settlement respecting dissolution of their conjugal partnership, this
custody of the children, support, and separation Court does not thereby accord recognition to nor
of property. legalize the de facto separation of the spouses,
Finding the foregoing joint petition to be which again in the language of Arroyo v.
"conformable to law," the CFI (Judge Jose F. Vasquez de Arroyo, supra — is a "state which is
Fernandez, presiding) issued an order on April abnormal and fraught with grave danger to all
27, 1963, rendering judgment approving and concerned." We would like to douse the
incorporating in toto their compromise momentary seething emotions of couples who,
agreement. In compliance of their mutual at the slightest ruffling of domestic tranquility —
agreement, the petitioner spouse delivered all brought about by "mere austerity of temper,
the four children to the respondent spouse and petulance of manners, rudeness of language, a
remitted money for their support. want of civil attention and accommodation, even
ISSUE: Whether the compromise agreement occasional sallies of passion" without more —
entered into by the parties and the judgment of would be minded toseparate from each other. In
the CFI grounded on the said agreement, are this jurisdiction, the husband and the wife are
valid. obliged to live together, observe mutual respect
RULING: We hold that the compromise and fidelity, and render mutual help and support
agreement and the judgment of the CFI (art. 109, new Civil Code). There is, therefore,
virtue in making it as difficult as possible for have agreed upon the monthly support of P150
married couples — impelled by no better cause to be given by the petitioner spouse for each
than their whims and caprices — to abandon child, still this Court must speak out its mind on
each other's company. the insufficiency of this amount. We, take judicial
'... For though in particular cases the notice of the devaluation of the peso in 1962 and
repugnance of the law to dissolve the obligations the steady skyrocketing of prices of all
of matrimonial cohabitation may operate with commodities, goods, and services, not to
great severity upon individuals, yet it must be mention the fact that all the children are already
carefully remembered that the general of school age. We believe, therefore, that the
happiness of the married life is secured by its CFI may increase this amount of P150
indissolubility. When people understand that according to the needs of each child.
they must live together, except for a very few
reasons known to the law, they learn to soften Exercise of Legitimate Profession of the
by mutual accommodation that yoke which they Spouse
know they cannot shake off; they become good
husbands and good wives from the necessity of Case No. 30 - GO VS CA
remaining husbands and wives; for necessity is
a powerful master in teaching the duties which it FACTS:
imposes ..." (Evans vs. Evans, 1 Hag. Con., 35; Private respondents spouses Hermogenes and
161 Eng. Reprint, 466, 467.) (Arroyo vs. Jane Ong were married in Dumaguete City. The
Vasquez de Arroyo, Id., pp. 58-59). video coverage of the wedding was provided by
We agree with the Court of Appeals, however, petitioners at a contract price of P1,650.00.
that the CFI erred in depriving the mother, the Three times thereafter, the newlyweds tried to
respondent spouse, of the custody of the two claim the video tape of their wedding, which they
older children (both then below the age of 7). planned to show to their relatives in the United
The Civil Code specifically commands in the States where they were to spend their
second sentence of its article 363 that "No honeymoon, and thrice they failed because the
mother shall be separated from her child under tape was apparently not yet processed. The
seven years of age, unless the court finds parties then agreed that the tape would be ready
compelling reasons for such measure." upon private respondents return.
... When husband and wife are divorced or living When private respondents came home from
separately and apart from each other, and the their honeymoon, however, they found out that
question as to the care, custody, and control of a the tape had been erased by petitioners and
child or children of their marriage is brought therefore, could no longer be delivered.
before a Court of First Instance by petition or as Furious at the loss of the tape which was
an incident to any other proceeding, the court, supposed to be the only record of their wedding,
upon hearing testimony as may be pertinent, private respondents filed a complaint for specific
shall award the care, custody and control of performance and damages against petitioners
each such child as will be for its best before the Regional Trial Court. After a
interest permitting the child to choose which protracted trial, the court a quo rendered a
parent it prefers to live with if it be over ten years decision, to wit:
of age, unless the parent so chosen be unfit to 1. Ordering the rescission of the agreement
take charge of the child by reason of moral entered into between plaintiff Hermogenes Ong
depravity, habitual drunkenness, incapacity, or and defendant Nancy Go;
poverty... . 2. Declaring defendants Alex Go and Nancy Go
One last point regarding the matter of support jointly and severally liable to plaintiffs
for the children — assuming that the custody of Hermogenes Ong and Jane C. Ong for the
any or more of the children will be finally following sums:
awarded to the mother. Although the spouses
a) P450.00, the down payment made at contract In 1978, petitioner Consolacion Villanueva and
time; Raymundo Aranas filed a complaint against
b) P75,000.00, as moral damages; respondents spouses Jesus and Remedios
c) P20,000.00, as exemplary damages; Bernas, for the cancellation of the TCT under
d) P5,000.00, as attorneys fees; and the name of the Bernases, and they be declared
e) P2,000.00, as litigation expenses; co-owners of the land. Petitioner alleged that
ISSUE: Whether Alex Go may be held jointly spouses Modesto and Victoria in 1987 and 1958
and severally liable with his wife Nancy executed 2 separate wills: first bequeathing to
regarding the pecuniary liabilities imposed upon Consolacion and Raymundo and to Dorothea
contractsentered into with private respondent and Teodoro, in equal shares pro diviso, all of
who was acting alone for her sole interest. said Victoria’s shares from the conjugal
RULING:Under Article 117 of the Civil Code partnership property; and second Modesto’s
(now Article 73 of the Family Code), the wife interests in his conjugal partnership with Victoria
may exercise any profession, occupation or as well as his separate properties bequeathed to
engage in business without the consent of the Dorothea and Teodoro. Trial court dismissed
husband. In the instant case, we are convinced the complaint, declaring herein respondents as
that it was only petitioner Nancy Go who entered the legal owners of the disputed property. IAC
into the contract with private respondent. likewise affirmed the lower court’s decision.
Consequently, we rule that she is solely liable to ISSUE: WON Villanueva had a right over the
private respondents for the damages awarded land and the improvements thereon made by
below, pursuant to the principle that contracts Victoria who rendered the lot as conjugal
produce effect only as between the parties who property.
execute them. RULING:
The land was not a conjugal partnership
System of Absolute Community – Separate property of Victoria and Modesto. It was
Properties Modesto’s exclusive property since he inherited
it from his parents. Moreover, since Victoria
Case No. 31 - VILLANUEVA vs. IAC died ahead of Modesto, Victoria did not inherit
said lot from him and therefore had nothing of
FACTS: the land to bequeath by will of otherwise to
Modesto Aranas, husband of Victoria, inherited Consolacion.
a land from his father. Dorothea and Teodoro, Article 158 of the Civil Code says that
Modesto’s illegitimate children, borrowed money improvements, whether for utility or adornment
from private respondent Jesus Bernas, made on the separate property of the spouses
mortgaging as collateral their father’s property. through advancements from the partnership or
In the loan agreement, Aranas described through the industry of either spouse belong to
themselves as the absolute co-owners. the conjugal partnership, and buildings
Dorothea and Teodoro failed to pay the loan constructed at the expense of the partnership
resulting to extrajudicial foreclosure of mortgage during the marriage on land belonging to one of
in 1977 and thereafter Bernas acquired the land the spouses also pertain to the partnership, but
as the highest bidder. Aftewards, the Aranases the value of the land shall be reimbursed to the
executed a deed of extrajudicial partition in spouse who owns the same.
1978, in which they adjudicated the same land There was no proof presented by Villanueva.
unto themselves in equal share pro-indiviso. Such proof is needed at the time of the making
Bernas then consolidated his ownership over the or construction of the improvements and the
lot when the mortgagors failed to redeem it withn source of the funds used thereof in order to
the reglementary period, and had the title in the determine the character of the improvements as
name of Modesto cancelled and another TCT belonging to the conjugal partnership or to one
issued in his name. spouse separately. What is certain is that the
land on which the improvements stand was the judgment which was likewise granted by the
exclusive property of Modesto and that where court.
the property is registered in the name of one ISSUE: WON A&L Industries can be held liable
spouse only and there is no showing of when for the obligations contracted by the husband.
precisely the property was acquired, the RULING:
presumption is that is belongs exclusively to said A&L Industries is a single proprietorship, whose
spouse. It is not therefore possible to declare registered owner is Lily Yulo. The said
the improvements to be conjugal in character. proprietorship was established during the
Furthermore, Bernas’ mode of acquisition of marriage and assets were also acquired during
ownership over the property appears in all the same. Hence, it is presumed that the
respect to be regular, untainted by any defect property forms part of the conjugal partnership
whatsoever. Bernas must therefore be deemed of the spouses and be held liable for the
to have acquired indefeasible and clear title to obligations contracted by the husband.
the lot which cannot be defeated or negated by However, for the property to be liable, the
claims subsequently arising and of which he had obligation contracted by the husband must have
no knowledge or means of knowing prior to their redounded to the benefit of the conjugal
assertion and ventilation partnership. The obligation was contracted by
Augusto for his own benefit because at the time
Liabilities of the Absolute Community he incurred such obligation, he had already
Case No. 32 - BA FINANCE CORP vs. CA abandoned his family and left their conjugal
home. He likewise made it appear that he was
FACTS: duly authorized by his wife in behalf of the
Augusto Yulo secured a loan from the petitioner company to procure such loan from the
in the amount of P591,003.59 as evidenced by a petitioner. Clearly, there must be the requisite
promissory note he signed in his own behalf and showing that some advantage accrued to the
as a representative of A&L Industries. Augusto welfare of the spouses.
presented an alleged special power of attorney Thus, the Court ruled that petitioner cannot
executed by his wife, Lily Yulo, who managed enforce the obligation contracted by Augusto
the business and under whose name the said against his conjugal properties with Lily.
business was registered, purportedly authorized Furthermore, the writ of attachment cannot be
the husband to procure the loan and sign the issued against the said properties and that the
promissory note. 2months prior the petitioner is ordered to pay Lily actual damages
procurement of the loan, Augusto left Lily and amounting to P660,000.00.
their children which in turn abandoned their
conjugal home. When the obligation became Case No. 33 - AYALA INVESTMENTS VS. CA
due and demandable, Augusto failed to pay the
same. FACTS: Article 73; Philippine Blooming Mills
The petitioner prayed for the issuance of a writ loan from petitioner Ayala Investment. As an
of attachment alleging that said spouses were added security for the credit line extended to
guilty of fraud consisting of the execution of PBM, respondent Alfredo Ching – Exec. VP,
Deed of Assignment assigning the rights, titles executed security agreements and making
and interests over a construction contract himself jointly and severally answerable with
executed by and between the spouses and A. PBM’s indebtedness to Ayala Investments.
Soriano Corporation. The writ hereby prayed for PBM failed to pay the loan. Thus, Ayala
was issued by the trial court and not contented Investments filed a case for sum of money
with the order, petitioner filed a motion for the against PBM and Alfredo Ching. The lower court
examination of attachment debtor alleging that issued a writ of execution of pending appeal.
the properties attached by the sheriff were not Thereafter, deputy sheriff Magsajo caused
sufficient to secure the satisfaction of any issuance and service upon respondents-
spouses of a notice of sheriff sale on three of been absent from their conjugal dwelling since
their conjugal properties. April 1962 and since then had not been heard
Private respondents, spouses Ching, filed a from and his whereabouts unknown. The petition
case of injunction against petitioners alleging further alleged that her husband left no will nor
that petitioners cannot enforce the judgment any property in his name nor any debts.
against conjugal partnership levied on the After hearing the Court a quo dismissed the
ground that the subject loan did not redound to petition on the ground that since Roberto L.
the benefit of the said conjugal partnership. Reyes left no properties there was no necessity
Upon application of private respondents, the to declare him judicially an absentee.
lower court issued a temporary restraining order ISSUE:
to prevent Magsajo from proceeding with the Whether or not there is a need for the
enforcement of the writ of execution and with the declaration of absence of Roberto Reyes
sale of the said properties at public auction. RULING:
No. The need to have a person judicially
ISSUE: Whether or not loan acquired by PBM declared an absentee is because of his
from Ayala Investments as guaranteed by properties which have to be administered by a
Alfredo Ching be redounded to the conjugal representative appointed by the Court (Article
partnership of the spouses. 384, Civil Code); the spouse of the absentee is
RULING: The husband and the wife can engage asking for separation of property (Article 191,
in any lawful enterprise or profession. While it is Civil Code) or his wife is asking the Court that
but natural for the husband and the wife to the administration of an classes of property in
consult each other, the law does not make it a the marriage be transferred to her (Article 196,
requirement that a spouse has to get the prior Civil Code). The petition to declare the husband
consent of the other before entering into any an absentee and the petition to place the
legitimate profession, occupation, business or management of the conjugal properties in the
activity. The exercise by a spouse of a legitimate hands of the wife may be combined and
profession, occupation, business or activity is adjudicated in the same proceedings, Peyer vs.
always considered to redound to the benefit of Martinez, 88 Phil. 72, 80).
the family. But an isolated transaction of a
spouse such as being guarantor for a third Case No. 35 - PNB vs. CA et al
person’s debt is not per se considered as FACTS: The spouses Chua were the owners of
redounding to the benefit of the family. a parcel of land covered by a TCT and
Therefore, to hold the absolute community or the registered in their names. Upon the husband’s
conjugal partnership property liable for any loss death, the probate court appointed his son,
resulting from such isolated activity, proofs private respondent Allan as special administrator
showing a direct benefit to the family must be of the deceased’s intestate estate. The court
presented. also authorized Allan to obtain a loan
accommodation from PNB to be secured by a
Case No. 34 - ERLINDA REYNOSO real estate mortgage over the above-mentioned
REYESvs.ALEJANDRO parcel of land, which Allan did for P450,000.00
FACTS: with interest.
This is an appeal from an order of the Court of For failure to pay the loan in full, the
First Instance of Cavite dismissing the petition bank extrajudicially foreclosed the real estate
filed by petitioner-appellant Erlinda Reynoso mortgage. During the auction, PNB was the
Reyes to have her husband Roberto Reyes highest bidder. However, the loan having a
declared an absentee. payable balance, to claim this deficiency, PNB
In a petition Erlinda Reynoso prayed for the instituted an action with the RTC, Balayan,
declaration of the absence of her husband Batangas, against both Mrs. Chua and Allan.
Roberto L. Reyes alleging that her husband had
The RTC rendered its decision, ordering the barred by prescription without right to file a
dismissal of PNB’s complaint. On appeal, the claim for any deficiency.
CA affirmed the RTC decision by dismissing Clearly petitioner herein has chosen the
PNB’s appeal for lack of merit. mortgage-creditor’s option
Hence, the present petition for review on of extrajudicially foreclosing the mortgaged
certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. property of the Chuas. This choice now bars any
ISSUE: The WON it was error for the CA to rule subsequent deficiency claim against the estate
that petitioner may no longer pursue by civil of the deceased. Petitioner may no longer avail
action the recovery of the balance of of the complaint for the recovery of the balance
indebtedness after having foreclosed the of indebtedness against said estate, after
property securing the same. petitioner foreclosed the property securing the
RULING: mortgage in its favor. It follows that in this case
No no further liability remains on the part of
Petitioner relies on Prudential Bank v. respondents and the deceased’s estate.
Martinez, 189 SCRA 612, 615 (1990),holding
that in extrajudicial foreclosure of mortgage, Case No. 36 - DEL MUNDO VS CA
when the proceeds of the sale are insufficient to FACTS: Private respondent Alejandra Nava was
a former client of petitioner Gerardo A.
pay the debt, the mortgagee has the right to
delMundo. The spouses Carlos and Alejandra
recover the deficiency from the mortgagor. Nava owned a house and lot located in Project
However, it must be pointed out that petitioner’s 6, Quezon City covered by TCT No. 256140
cited cases involve ordinary debts secured by a which was mortgaged to the Philippine Veterans
mortgage. The case at bar, we must stress, Bank. In 1981, before the spouses Nava
involves a foreclosure of mortgage arising out of migrated to the United States, this residential
a settlement of estate, wherein the administrator property was leased by petitioner. In a lease
contract denominated as Agreement of Lease
mortgaged a property belonging to the estate of
with Option to Purchase, private respondent
the decedent, pursuant to an authority given by spouses agreed to lease the property to
the probate court. As the CA correctly stated, petitioner for one year, with a monthly rental of
the Rules of Court on Special Proceedings P2,500.00. The delMundo family moved into the
comes into play decisively. The applicable rule is house upon execution of the lease
Section 7 of Rule 86 of the Revised Rules of contract. Petitioner was given until October 16,
Court ( which PNB contends is not.) 1982 to exercise his option to buy the property.
Petitioner was unable to exercise his option
In the present case it is undisputed that the
to purchase because he had no money. While
conditions under the aforecited rule have been respondent spouses were in the United States,
complied with [see notes]. It follows that we petitioner sent them a Deed of Sale with
must consider Sec. 7 of Rule 86, appropriately Assignment of Mortgage.He asked the spouses
applicable to the controversy at hand, which in Nava to sign the said Deed ostensibly to enable
summary [and case law as well] grants to the him to borrow part of the purchase price in the
sum of P470,000.00 from the bank.Petitioner
mortgagee three distinct, independent and
also sent them an Addendum to the Deed of
mutually exclusive remedies that can Sale which states that he will also assume her
be alternatively pursued by the mortgage obligations to Mrs. Ligaya Gonzales and to
creditor for the satisfaction of his credit in case Pablo Nava. After several letters, petitioner
the mortgagor dies, among them: succeeded in persuading the spouses Nava to
(1) to waive the mortgage and claim the entire trust him and to sign the Deed of Sale with
debt from the estate of the mortgagor as an Assignment of Mortgage and the Addendum
even without receiving consideration for the
ordinary claim;
(2) to foreclose the mortgage judicially and Private respondent Alejandra Nava lost
prove any deficiency as an ordinary claim; and faith in petitioner because he did not comply with
(3) to rely on the mortgage exclusively, his promise to pay the P174,000.00 obligation to
foreclosing the same at any time before it is the Philippine Veterans Bank, the P166,000.00
indebtedness to Mrs. Ligaya Gonzales and her b) There was no receipt of payment signed by
P40,000.00 obligation to Pablo Nava. On March the Navas presented in evidence;
16, 1983, private respondent spouses Nava c) Appellants allegation that he paid the
executed a Revocation of Deed of Sale with consideration in his office is in conflict with his
Assignment of Mortgage which was duly statement in his affidavit-complaint (Exh. 32-a-1)
notarized by a County Clerk of the Superior that he paid the said amount at the City Hall of
Court of California and certified by Vice Consul Manila.
DaniloBacalzo of the Philippine Consulate d) His payment of the rentals on the premises in
General in California, U.S.A. The Deed of Sale question for the months of December 1981 and
with Assignment of Mortgage in favor of January 1982; and his failure to declare the
petitioner and his wife was revoked and property in question in his name and his non-
canceled by private respondent spouses payment of the realty taxes due thereon, are
because the former had not yet paid the private clear indications that at the time of the alleged
respondent spouses and Mrs. Ligaya Gonzales. sale, he still recognized the Navas as the
On August 11, 1983, private respondent owners of the premises in question.
spouses through their attorney-in-fact BayaniSy, e) The series of letters he sent to the Navas who
filed a complaint for Unlawful Detainer (Civil were in the United States (Exhs. 16 to 24) from
Case No. 44181) against petitioner before the March to June 1982 would show that he has not
Metropolitan Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch paid the consideration as he was then
43. Petitioner was ordered to vacate the requesting the Navas to sign the prepared
premises, pay rent and attorneys fees in a documents and return them to him, so that he
decision dated March 26, 1992. Petitioner may use them in applying for a bank loan the
appealed to the Regional Trial Court and the proceeds of which will be used in paying the
unlawful detainer suit was docketed as loans of the Navas and the consideration for the
Civil Case No. Q-92-12438.Upon motion by sale of the property. the instant petition for
private respondent spouses, Judge Teodoro P. review is hereby DENIED for lack of merit.
Regino ordered the issuance of a writ of Case No. 37 - WONG v IAC
execution pending appeal on January 14, 1993
It is petitioners contention that the notarized FACTS:Romarico Henson married Katrina
Deed of Sale with Assignment of Mortgage Pineda on January 6, 1964 they had been most
signed by the spouses Nava conclusively shows of the time livingseparately. During the marriage
or on January 6, 1971, Romarico bought a 1,787
that there was consideration for the contract of
square-meter parcel of land,in June 1972,
sale. Katrina entered into an agreement with Anita
ISSUE: Whether the Deed of Sale with Chan who consigned to Katrina pieces of
assignment of mortgage by the spouses is valid. jewelryfor sale valued at 199,895 Hongkong
RULING:No, the Deed of Sale with assignment dollars or P321,830.95. Katrina failed to return
of mortgage by the spouses is null and void. The the pieces of jewelrywithin the 20-day period
errors raised by petitioner are clearly factual in agreed upon, Anita Chan demanded payment of
nature. There is no justification to depart from their value.Anita Chan and her husband Ricky
the well-settled principle laid down in a long line Wong filed against Katrina and her husband
of cases that the findings of fact of the lower Romarico Henson, anaction forcollection of a
courts, the trial court and the Court of Appeals, sum of money. Trial court promulgated a
are, as a general rule, binding and conclusive decisionsin favor of the Wongs. A writ of
upon this Court.[23] There is likewise no basis to executionwas thereafter issued. Levied upon
review the factual conclusions of the Regional were four lots in Angeles City all in the name
Trial Court, particularly since respondent Court of Romarico Henson ...married to Katrina
of Appeals adopted them as its own and found Henson. Lots were sold September 9,
them to be in order. 1977.August 8, 1 978, Romarico filed an action
Moreover, we agree with respondent for the annulment of the decision because he
appellate court in sustaining the trial courts was "not givenhis day in court”, the court, finding
findings: that there was no basis for holding the conjugal
a) Appellants allegation that he paid the amount partnership liable for thepersonal indebtedness
of P476,000.00 to Mrs. Nava in his law office of Katrina, ruled in favor of reconveyance.
was not corroborated by any of the office
personnel allegedly present at that time;
ISSUE:Whether or not the execution of a Hermoso sued him. Hermoso won hence a writ
decision in an action for collection of a sum of of execution was issued. Pursuant to said writ of
money may benullified on the ground that the execution, the sheriff issued a notice of sale of
real properties levied upon and sold at public Damaso’s 210 shares of stocks in a certain
auction are the alleged exclusiveproperties of a property. Damaso opposed said public sale.
husband who did not participate in his wife's Later, his wife, Mercedes Cobb-Perez, filed a
business transaction from which said motion to quash the writ issued by Judge Lantin
actionstemmed on the ground that the shares of stock subject to
public sale is conjugal property while her
HELD:Romarico and Katrina had in fact been husband’s debt was Damaso’s own personal
separated when Katrina entered into a business debt which never redounded to the conjugal
deal with AnitaWong. Thus, the business property. She initially filed in another court but
transaction involved the personal dealings of his the same was dismissed because the judge in
estranged wife. Writ of executioncannot be said court said that it has no power to enjoin a
issued against Romarico since he was not co-equal court. She then filed the motion to
represented in court.On the matter of ownership quash before Judge Lantin who denied the
of the properties involved, having been acquired same.
during the marriage, they arestill presumed to ISSUE: Whether or not the motion to quash
belong to the conjugal partnershipeven though should be granted.
Romarico and Katrina had been livingseparately HELD: No. A judge may only quash the wwit of
but the conjugal nature of the properties execution he issued when:
notwithstanding, Katrina's indebtedness may not (a) it has been improvidently issued, or
be paidfor with them her obligation not having (b) it is defective in substance, or
been shown by the petitioners to be one of (c) it has been issued against the wrong party,
the charges against theconjugal or
partnership.Katrina's indebtedness may not be (d) the judgment debt has been paid, or
paid for with them her obligation not having (e) the writ has been issued without authority, or
been shown by thepetitioners to be one of (f) there has been a change in the situation of
the charges against the conjugal partnership. In the parties which makes such execution
addition to the fact that her rightsover the inequitable, or
properties are merely inchoate prior to the (g) the controversy has never been submitted to
liquidation of the conjugal partnership, the the judgment of the court, and therefore no
consent of herhusband and her authority to incur judgment at all has ever been rendered thereon.
such indebtedness had not been alleged in the None of the above instances were alleged by
complaint and proven atthe trial.Under the Civil Cobb-Perez. Her allegation was not even proved
Code, a wife may bind the conjugal partnership as in fact, Damaso, in the Court of Appealas,
only when she purchases things necessaryfor asserted that said 210 stocks are his own
the support of the family or when she borrows property and they are even under his name
money for the purpose of purchasing things alone.
necessary forthe support of the family if the The Supreme Court also observed that there
husband fails to deliver the proper sum; were numerous pleadings filed in order to thwart
when the administration of theconjugal the execution of the writ which caused this case
partnership is transferred to the wife by the to be protracted. Said pleadings can be
courtsor by the husband and when the wife observed to be dilatory hence it ordered the
givesmoderate donations for charity. Having counsels of Damaso and Mercedes to shoulder
failed to establish that any of these the costs.
circumstances occurred, theWongs may not
bind the conjugal assets to answer for Katrina's Case No. 39 - PARTOSA-GO vs CA
personal obligation to them FACTS: The petitioner, Prima Partosa-Jo, is the
legal wife of Jose Jo, herein private respondent.
Case No. 38 - COBB-PEREZ vs LANTIN The latter admitted to have cohabited with 3
women and fathered 15 children. Prima filed a
FACTS: Damaso Perez owe Ricardo Hermoso complaint against the husband for judicial
P17,309.44 representing unpaid purchases of separation of conjugal property in addition to an
leather materials used in Damaso’s shoe earlier action for support which was
business. Damaso was unable to pay hence consolidated. RTC decision was a definite
disposition of the complaint for support but none the least for one’s family although able to do so.
of that for the judicial separation of conjugal 5 There must be absolute cessation of marital
property. Jose elevated the decision to CA relations, duties and rights, with the intention of
which affirmed rulings of the trial court. The perpetual separation.
complaint on the separation of property was The private respondent had already rejected the
dismissed for lack of cause of action on the petitioner, whom he denied admission to their
ground that separation by agreement was not conjugal home in Dumaguete City when she
covered in Art. 178 of the Civil Code. Prima returned from Zamboanguita. The fact that she
contested that the agreement between her and was not accepted by Jo demonstrates all too
Jose was for her to temporarily live with her clearly that he had no intention of resuming their
parents during the initial period of her pregnancy conjugal relationship. the private respondent
and for him to visit and support her. They never refused to give financial support to the petitioner.
agreed to be separated permanently. She even The physical separation of the parties, coupled
returned to him but the latter refused to accept with the refusal by the private respondent to give
her. support to the petitioner, sufficed to constitute
abandonment as a ground for the judicial
ISSUE: WON there is abandonment on the part separation of their conjugal property.
of Jose Jo to warrant judicial separation of Their separation thus falls also squarely under
conjugal property. Article 135 of the Family Code, providing as
HELD:The Court of Appeals dismissed the follows:
complaint on the ground that the separation of Art. 135. Any of the following shall be
the parties was due to their agreement and not considered sufficient cause for judicial
because of abandonment. The respondent court separation of property:
relied mainly on the testimony of the petitioner, (6) That at the time of the petition, the spouse
who declared under oath that she left have been separated in fact for at least one year
Dumaguete City, where she and Jo were living and reconciliation is highly improbable.
together “because that was our agreement.” It Case No. 40 - VALDEZ VS RTC
held that a agreement to live separately without FACTS:Antonio Valdez and Consuelo Gomez
just cause was void under Article 221 of the Civil were married in 1971 and begotten 5 children.
Code and could not sustain any claim of Valdez filed a petition in 1992 for a declaration
abandonment by the aggrieved spouse. of nullity of their marriage pursuant to Article 36
The Court of Appeals dismissed the complaint of the Family Code, which was granted hence,
on the ground that the separation of the parties marriage is null and void on the ground of their
was due to their agreement and not because of mutual psychological incapacity. Stella and
abandonment. The respondent court relied Joaquin are placed under the custody of their
mainly on the testimony of the petitioner, who mother while the other 3 siblings are free to
declared under oath that she left Dumaguete choose which they prefer.
City, where she and Jo were living together *Art. 36. A marriage contracted by any party
“because that was our agreement.” It held that a who, at the time of the celebration, was
agreement to live separately without just cause psychologically incapacitated to comply with the
was void under Article 221 of the Civil Code and essential marital obligations of marriage , shall
could not sustain any claim of abandonment by likewise be void even if such incapacity
the aggrieved spouse. becomes manifest only after its solemnization.(
Under the Art. 128 of Family Code, the As amended by E.O. No.227, dated July 17,
aggrieved spouse may petition for judicial 1987)
separation on either of these grounds: Gomez sought a clarification of that portion in
1. Abandonment by a spouse of the other the decision regarding the procedure for the
without just cause; and liquidation of common property in “unions
2. Failure of one spouse to comply with his or without marriage”. During the hearing on the
her obligations to the family without just cause, motion, the children filed a joint affidavit
even if she said spouse does not leave the other expressing desire to stay with their father.
spouse. HELD:The Supreme Court ruled that in a void
Abandonment implies a departure by one marriage, regardless of the cause thereof, the
spouse with the avowed intent never to return, property relations of the parties are governed by
followed by prolonged absence without just the rules on co-ownership. Any property
cause, and without in the meantime providing in acquired during the union is prima facie
presumed to have been obtained through their industry shall be owned by them in common in
joint efforts. A party who did not participate in proportion to their respective contributions. It
the acquisition of the property shall be must be stressed that actual contribution is
considered as having contributed thereto jointly required by this provision, in contrast to Article
if said party’s efforts consisted in the care and 147 which states that efforts in the care and
maintenance of the family. maintenance of the family and household, are
Case No. 41 - AGAPAY VS PALANG regarded as contributions to the acquisition of
FACTS: common property by one who has no salary or
Miguel Palang married CalinaVellesterol with income or work or industry. If the actual
whom he had 1 child. He then contracted his contribution of the party is not proved, there will
second marriage with ErlindaAgapay, with whom be no co-ownership and no presumption of
he had a son. The couple purchased a parcel of equal shares.
agricultural land and the transfer certificate was
issued in their names. She also purchased a In the case at bar, Erlinda tried to establish by
house and lot in Binalonan, where the property her testimony that she is engaged in the
was later issued in her name. Miguel and business of buy and sell and had a sari-sari
Carlina executed a Deed of Donation, wherein store but failed to persuade SC that she actually
they agreed to donate their conjugal property contributed money to buy the subject riceland.
consisting of 6 parcels of land to their only child, Worth noting is the fact that on the date of
Herminia. Carlina filed a complaint against conveyance, when she was only around 20 of
Miguel and Erlinda for bigamy. age and Miguel Palang was already 64 and a
pensioner of the U.S. Government. Considering
Miguel died, and Carlina and Herminia instituted her youthfulness, it is unrealistic to conclude that
an action for recovery of ownership and she contributed P3,750.00 as her share in the
possession with damages against Erlinda. They purchase price of subject property, there being
sought to get back the riceland and house and no proof of the same.
lot allegedly bought by Miguel during his With respect to the house and lot, Erlinda
cohabitation with Erlinda. RTC dismissed the allegedly bought the same for P20,000.00 when
complaint and ordered the respondents to she was only 22 years old. The testimony of the
provide for the intestate shares of the parties, notary public who prepared the deed of
particularly of Erlinda's son. CA reversed the trial conveyance for the property testified that Miguel
court's decision. Palang provided the money for the purchase
price and directed that Erlinda’s name alone be
ISSUE:Whether or not the properties from placed as the vendee.
Miguel's second marriage be granted to Erlinda.
Since Erlinda failed to prove that she contributed
RULING:No. SC held that the agricultural land money to the purchase price of the riceland, we
and house and land cannot be granted to find no basis to justify her co-ownership with
Erlinda. Miguel over the same. Consequently, the
The sale of the riceland was made in favor of riceland should, as correctly held by the CA,
Miguel and Erlinda. The provision of law revert to the conjugal partnership property of the
applicable here is Article 148 of the Family Code deceased Miguel and CarlinaPalang.
providing for cases of cohabitation when a man
and a woman who are not capacitated to marry The transaction was properly a donation made
each other live exclusively with each other as by Miguel to Erlinda was void. Article 87 of the
husband and wife without the benefit of marriage Family Code expressly provides that the
or under a void marriage. The marriage of prohibition against donations between spouses
Miguel and Erlinda was null and void because now applies to donations between persons living
the earlier marriage of Miguel and Carlina was together as husband and wife without a valid
still subsisting and unaffected by the latter's de marriage, for otherwise, the condition of those
facto separation. who incurred guilt would turn out to be better
than those in legal union.

Under Article 148, only the properties acquired As regards to the donation of their conjugal
by both of the parties through their actual joint property executed by Miguel and Carlina in favor
contribution of money, property or of their daughter, was also void. Separation of
property between spouses during the marriage On 20 September 1976, finding no trust relation
shall not take place except by judicial order or between the parties, the trial court dismissed the
without judicial conferment when there is an complaint together with the counterclaim.
express stipulation in the marriage settlements. Petitioners and respondents appealed.
The judgment which resulted from the parties’ ISSUE: Whether there is trust relationship
compromise was not specifically and expressly between the parties.
for separation of property and should not be so RULING: Yes, There is. By definition, trust
inferred. relations between parties may either be express
or implied. Express trusts are those which are
Case No. 42 - O’LACO vs CO CHO CHIT created by the direct and positive acts of the
FACTS: parties, by some writing or deed, or will, or by
It appears that on 31 May 1943, the Philippine words evincing an intention to create a trust.
Sugar Estate Development Company, Ltd., sold Implied trusts are those which, without being
a parcel of land, Lot No. 5, Block No. 10, Plan express, are deducible from the nature of the
Psu-10038, situated at Oroquieta St., Sta. Cruz, transaction as matters of intent, or which are
Manila, with the Deed of Absolute Sale naming superinduced on the transaction by operation of
Emilia O'Laco as vendee; thereafter, Transfer law as matters of equity, independently of the
Certificate of Title No. 66456 was issued in her particular intention of the parties. Implied trusts
name. may either be resulting or constructive trusts,
On 17 May 1960, private respondent-spouses both coming into being by operation of law.
Valentin Co Cho Chit and O Lay Wa learned First. As stipulated by the parties, the document
from the newspapers that Emilia O'Laco sold the of sale, the owner's duplicate copy of the
same property to the Roman Catholic certificate of title, insurance policies, receipt of
Archbishop of Manila for P230,000.00, with initial premium of insurance coverage and real
assumption of the real estate mortgage estate tax receipts ware all in the possession of
constituted thereon. 4 respondent spouses which they offered in
On 22 June 1960, respondent-spouses Valentin evidence. As emphatically asserted by
Co Cho Chit and O Lay Kia sued petitioner- respondent O Lay Kia, the reason why these
spouses Emilia O'Laco and Hugo Luna to documents of ownership remained with her is
recover the purchase price of the land before the that the land in question belonged to her.
then Court of First Instance of Rizal, respondent- Indeed, there can be no persuasive
spouses asserting that petitioner Emilia O'Laco rationalization for the possession of these
knew that they were the real vendees of the documents of ownership by respondent-spouses
Oroquieta property sold in 1943 by Philippine for seventeen (17) years after the Oroquieta
Sugar Estate Development Company, Ltd., and property was purchased in 1943 than that of
that the legal title thereto was merely placed in precluding its possible sale, alienation or
her name. They contend that Emilia O'Laco conveyance by Emilia O'Laco, absent any
breached the trust when she sold the land to the machination or fraud. This continued possession
Roman Catholic Archbishop of Manila. of the documents, together with other
Meanwhile, they asked the trial court to garnish corroborating evidence spread on record,
all the amounts still due and payable to strongly suggests that Emilia O'Laco merely held
petitioner-spouses arising from the sale, which the Oroquieta property in trust for respondent-
was granted on 30 June 1960. spouses.
Petitioner-spouses deny the existence of any Second. It may be worth to mention that before
form of trust relation. They aver that Emilia buying the Oroquieta property, respondent-
O'Laco actually bought the property with her spouses purchased another property situated in
own money; that she left the Deed of Absolute Kusang-Loob, Sta. Cruz, Manila, where the
Sale and the corresponding title with certificate of title was placed in the name of
respondent-spouses merely for safekeeping; AmbrosioO'Laco, older brother of Emilia, under
that when she asked for the return of the similar or identical circumstances. The testimony
documents evidencing her ownership, of former counsel for respondent-spouses, then
respondent-spouses told her that these were Associate Justice Antonio G. Lucero of the Court
misplaced or lost; and, that in view of the loss, of Appeals,
she filed a petition for issuance of a new title, Third. The circumstances by which Emilia
and on 18 August 1944 the then Court of First O'Laco obtained a new title by reason of the
Instance of Manila granted her petition. alleged loss of the old title then in the
possession of respondent-spouses cast serious bungalow. Private Respondent E & L
doubt on the veracity of her ownership. The Merchantile, Inc. filed a complaint against
petitions respectively filed by Emilia O'Laco and petitioner and F.F. Manacop Construction Co.,
AmbrosioO'Laco for the Oroquieta and the
Inc. before the RTC of Pasig, Metro Manila to
Kusang-Loob properties were both granted on
the same day, 18 August 1944, by the then collect indebtedness. Instead of filing an answer,
Court of First Instance of Manila. These orders petitioner and his company entered into a
were recorded in the Primary Entry Book of the compromise agreement with private
Register of Deeds of Manila at the same time, respondent.
2:35 o'clock in the afternoon of 1 September
1944, in consecutive entries, Entries Nos. The trial court rendered judgment approving the
246117-18. This coincidence lends credence to aforementioned compromise agreement. It
the position of respondent-spouses that there enjoined the parties to comply with the
was in fact a conspiracy between the siblings agreement in good faith. Private respondent filed
Ambrosio and Emilia to defraud and deprive a motion for execution which the lower court
respondents of their title to the Oroquieta and granted. However, execution of the judgment
Kusang-Loob properties. was delayed. Eventually, the sheriff levied on
Fourth. Until the sale of the Oroquieta property several vehicles and other personal properties of
to the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Manila, petitioner. These chattels were sold at public
petitioner Emilia O'Laco actually recognized the auction for which certificates of sale were
trust. Specifically, when respondent spouses correspondingly issued by the sheriff.
learned that Emilia was getting married to Hugo,
O Lay Kia asked her to have the title to the Petitioner and his company filed a motion to
property already transferred to her and her quash the alias writs of execution and to stop
husband Valentin, and Emilia assured her that the sheriff from continuing to enforce them on
"would be arranged (maaayosna)" after her the ground that the judgment was not yet
wedding. Her answer was an express executory. Private respondent opposed the
recognition of the trust, otherwise, she would motion. The lower court denied the motion to
have refused the request outright. Petitioners quash the writ of execution and the prayers in
never objected to this evidence; nor did they the subsequent pleadings filed by petitioner and
attempt to controvert it. his company. Finding that petitioner and his
Fifth. The trial court itself determined that company had not paid their indebtedness even
"Valentin Co Cho Chit and O Lay Kia had some though they collected receivables, the lower
money with which they could buy the property." court held that the case had become final and
In fact, Valentin was the Chief Mechanic of the executory. It also ruled that petitioner's
Paniqui Sugar Mills, was engaged in the buy residence was not exempt from execution as it
and sell business, operated a gasoline station, was not duly constituted as a family home,
and owned an auto supply store as well as a pursuant to the Civil Code.
ten-door apartment in Caloocan City. In
contrast, Emilia O'Laco failed to convince the ISSUE: Whether or not a writ of execution of a
Court that she was financially capable of final and executory judgment issued before the
purchasing the Oroquieta property. In fact, she effectivity of the Family Code be executed on a
opened a bank account only in 1946 and house and lot constituted as a family home
likewise began filing income tax returns that under the provision of Family Code.
same year, while the property in question was
bought in 1943. Respondent-spouses even RULING: The petition is denied for utter lack of
helped Emilia and her brothers in their expenses merit. It does not mean that Articles 152 and 153
and livelihood. Emilia could only give a vague FC have a retroactive effect such that all existing
account on how she raised the money for the family residences are deemed to have been
purchase of the property. Her narration of the constituted as family homes at the time of their
transaction of sale abounds with "I don't know" occupation prior to the effectivity of the FC and
and "I don't remember." are exempt from execution for the payment of
Case No. 43 - MANACOP VS CA obligations incurred before the effectivity of the
FACTS: FC. Art. 162 simply means that all existing family
Petitioner Florante F. Manacop and his wife residences at the time of the effectivity of the
Eulaceli purchased residential lot with a FC, are considered family homes and are
prospectively entitled to the benefits accorded to The debt or liability which was the basis of the
a family home under the FC. judgment arose or was incurred at the time of
the vehicular accident on March 16, 1976 and
the money judgment arising therefrom was
Case N0. 44 - MODEQUILLO vs BREVA rendered by the appellate court on January 29,
FACTS: 1988. Both preceded the effectivity of the Family
The sheriff levied on a parcel of residential land Code on August 3, 1988. Therefore, this case
located at PoblacionMalalag, Davao del Sur on does not fall under the exemptions from
July 1988, registered in the name of Jose execution provided in the Family Code.
Mondequillo and a parcel of agricultural land As to the agricultural land, trial court correctly
located at DalagbongBulacan, Malalag, Davao ruled that the levy to be made shall be on
de Sur also registered in the latter’s name. A whatever rights the petitioner may have on the
motion to quash was filed by the petitioner land.
alleging that the residential land is where the 44. FLORANTE F. MANACOP v. COURT OF
family home is built since 1969 prior the APPEALS
commencement of this case and as such is G.R. No. 97898, August 11, 1997
exempt from execution, forced sale or
attachment under Article 152 and 153 except for
liabilities mentioned in Article 155 thereof, and FACTS: In 1972 petitioner Florante Manacop
that the judgment sought to be enforced against and his wife purchased a house and lot in
the family home is not one of those enumerated. Quezon City. In 1986 private respondent E & L
With regard to the agricultural land, it is alleged Mercantile, Inc filed a complaint against
that it is still part of the public land and the petitioner and F.F. Manacop Construction Co.
transfer in his favor by the original possessor Inc., before the RTC of Pasig to collect an
and applicant who was a member of a cultural
indebtedness. They subsequently entered into a
minority. The residential house in the present
case became a family home by operation of law compromise agreement, upon which the RTC
under Article 153. rendered judgment approving the same.
WON the subject property is deemed to be a Private respondent filed a motion for writ of
family home in as much as it does not fall under execution which was granted. The sheriff levied
the exemption from execution. on several vehicles and other personal
properties of petitioner, and the same were sold
No. The subject property is deemed to be a
family home but it does not fall under the at a public auction.
exemption from execution of the money
judgmemtaforecited. In 1989 petitioner and his company filed a
Under Article 162 of the Family Code, it is motion to quash the alias writs of execution on
provided that “the provisions of this Chapter the ground that the judgment was not yet
shall also govern existing family residences
executory, alleging that the compromise
insofar as said provisions are applicable.” It
does not mean that Articles 152 and 153 of said agreement had not yet matured. In its opposition
Code have a retroactive effect such that all to the motion to quash, the private respondent
existing family residences are deemed to have alleged that the house and lot of petitioner could
been constituted as family homes at the time of not be considered a family home on the ground
their occupation prior to the effectivity of the that petitioner was already living abroad and that
Family Code and are exempt from execution for the property, having been acquired in 1972,
the payment of obligations incurred before the
should have been judicially constituted as a
effectivity of the Family Code. Article 162 simply
means that all existing family residences at the family home to exempt it from execution,
time of the effectivity of the Family Code, are pursuant to the Civil Code.
considered family homes and are prospectively
entitled to the benefits accorded to a family The RTC denied the motion to quash. Petitioner
home under the Family Code. Article 162 does filed with the CA a petition for certiorari, which
not state that the provisions of Chapter 2, Title V
have a retroactive effect.
was dismissed. Hence, this petition for review on as the motion for reconsideration. Hence, this
certiorari. petition for review on certiorari.

ISSUE: Whether a writ of execution of a final ISSUE: Whether a final judgment of the Court of
and executory judgment issued before the Appeals in an action for damages may be
effectivity of the Family Code can be executed satisfied by way of execution of a family home
on a house and lot constituted as a family home. constituted under the Family Code.

RULING: Yes. Under the Family Code which RULING: Under the Family Code, a family home
took effect on August 3, 1988 the subject is deemed constituted on a house and lot from
property became his family home under the the time it is occupied as a family residence.
simplified process embodied in Article 153 of the There is no need to constitute the same
said Code. However, the Court in Modequillo judicially or extrajudicially as required in the Civil
explicitly ruled that said provision of the Family Code. If the family actually resides in the
Code does not have retroactive effect. In other premises, it is, therefore, a family home as
words, prior to August 3, 1988 the procedure contemplated by law. Thus, the creditors should
mandated by the Civil Code had to be followed take the necessary precautions to protect their
for a family home to be constituted as such. interest before extending credit to the spouses
There being absolutely no proof that the subject or head of the family who owns the home.
property was judicially or extrajudicially
constituted as a family home, it follows that the Article 155 of the Family Code also provides as
law’s protective mantle cannot be availed of by follows:
petitioner. Since the debt involved herein was
incurred and the assailed orders of the trial court Art. 155. The family home shall be exempt
issued prior to August 3, 1988, the petitioner from execution, forced sale or attachment
cannot be shielded by the benevolent provisions except:
of the Family Code.
(1) For non-payment of taxes;

45. JOSE MODEQUILLO v. HON. AUGUSTO (2) For debts incurred prior to the
V. BREVA constitution of the family home;
G.R. No. 86355, May 31, 1990
(3) For debts secured by mortgages on the
FACTS: In January 1988 a judgment was premises before or after such constitution;
rendered by the Court of Appeals rendering and
petitioner liable to pay for damages. The
judgment having become final and executory, a (4) For debts due to laborers, mechanics,
writ of execution was issued by the RTC of architects, builders, material men and others
Davao City. In July 1988 the sheriff levied on a who have rendered service or furnished
parcel of residential land registered in the name material for the construction of the building.
of petitioner.
The exemption provided as aforestated is
A motion to quash and/or to set aside levy of effective from the time of the constitution of the
execution was filed by petitioner alleging that the family home as such, and lasts so long as any of
residential land is where the family home is built its beneficiaries actually resides therein.
since 1969 prior to the commencement of the
case and as such is exempt from execution, In the present case, the residential house and lot
forced sale, or attachment under the Family of petitioner was not constituted as a family
Code. The trial court denied the motion, as well home whether judicially or extrajudicially under
the Civil Code. It became a family home by FACTS: Spouses Vicente Benitez and Isabel
operation of law only under Article 153 of the Chipongian died intestate in 1989 and 1982,
Family Code. It is deemed constituted as a respectively, leaving several properties in
family home upon the effectivity of the Family Laguna. Proceedings for administration of
Code on August 3, 1988 not August 4, one year properties were filed with the trial court by
after its publication in the Manila Chronicle on Vicente’s sister, Victoria B. Lirio, in favor of the
August 4, 1987 (1988 being a leap year). nephew, herein private respondent. Petitioner
Marissa Benitez-Badua opposed the petition,
The contention of petitioner that it should be alleging that she is the sole heir of the estate.
considered a family home from the time it was
occupied by petitioner and his family in 1969 is The trial court decided in favor of petitioner. On
not well- taken. Under Article 162 of the Family appeal, however, the Court of Appeals reversed
Code, it is provided that "the provisions of this the RTC decision, stating that petitioner was not
Chapter shall also govern existing family the biological child of the deceased spouses.
residences insofar as said provisions are Hence, this petition for review.
applicable." It does not mean that Articles 152
and 153 of said Code have a retroactive effect ISSUE: Whether petitioner is the legitimate child
such that all existing family residences are and the sole heir of the deceased spouses.
deemed to have been constituted as family
homes at the time of their occupation prior to the RULING: No. The mere registration of a child in
effectivity of the Family Code and are exempt his or her birth certificate as the child of the
from execution for the payment of obligations supposed parents is not a valid adoption. It does
incurred before the effectivity of the Family not confer upon the child the status of an
Code. Article 162 simply means that all existing adopted child and her legal rights. Such act
family residences at the time of the effectivity of amounts to simulation of the child’s birth or
the Family Code, are considered family homes falsification of his or her birth certificate, which is
and are prospectively entitled to the benefits a public document.
accorded to a family home under the Family
Code. Article 162 does not state that the It is worthy to note that Vicente and brother of
provisions of Chapter 2, Title V have a the deceased wife executed a Deed of Extra-
retroactive effect. Judicial Settlement of the Estate of the latter. In
the notarized document, they stated that they
Is the family home of petitioner exempt from were the sole heirs of the deceased because
execution of the money judgment aforecited No. “she died without descendants and ascendants”.
The debt or liability which was the basis of the In executing such deed, Vicente effectively
judgment arose or was incurred at the time of repudiated the Certificate of Live Birth of the
the vehicular accident on March 16, 1976 and petitioner where it appeared that he was the
the money judgment arising therefrom was petitioner’s father.
rendered by the appellate court on January 29,
1988. Both preceded the effectivity of the Family A careful reading of the above articles 164, 166,
Code on August 3, 1988. This case does not fall 170, and 171 of the Family Code will show that
under the exemptions from execution provided they do not contemplate a situation, like in the
in the Family Code. instant case, where a child is alleged not to be
the child of nature or biological child of a certain
46. MARISSA BENITEZ-BADUA v. COURT OF couple. Rather, these articles govern a situation
APPEALS where a husband (or his heirs) denies as his
G.R. No. 105625, January 24, 1994 own a child of his wife.
Thus, under Article 166, it is the husband who
can impugn the legitimacy of said child by ISSUES: (1) Whether the child Rolando is
proving: (1) it was physically impossible for him conclusively presumed the legitimate issue of
to have sexual intercourse, with his wife within the spouses Elizabeth Mejias and Crispin
the first 120 days of the 300 days which Anahaw; (2) Whether the wife may institute an
immediately preceded the birth of the child; (2) action that would bastardize her child without
that for biological or other scientific reasons, the giving her husband, the legally presumed father,
child could not have been his child; (3) that in an opportunity to be heard.
case of children conceived through artificial
insemination, the written authorization or RULING:
ratification by either parent was obtained (1) Yes. Article 255, 256, and 257 of the Civil
through mistake, fraud, violence, intimidation or Code and the Rules of Court should be borne in
undue influence. mind:

Articles 170 and 171 reinforce this reading as Art. 255. Children born after one hundred and
they speak of the prescriptive period within eighty days following the celebration of the
which the husband or any of his heirs should file marriage, and before three hundred days
the action impugning the legitimacy of said child. following its dissolution or the separation of the
Doubtless then, the appellate court did not err spouses shall be presumed to be legitimate.
when it refused to apply these articles to the
case at bench. For the case at bench is not one Against this presumption, no evidence shall be
where the heirs of the late Vicente are admitted other than that of the physical
contending that petitioner is not his child by impossibility of the husband's having access to
Isabel. Rather, their clear submission is that his wife within the first one hundred and twenty
petitioner was not born to Vicente and Isabel. days of the three hundred which preceded the
birth of the child.

47. ANTONIO MACADANGDANG v. COURT This physical impossibility may be caused:

G.R. No. L-49542, September 12, 1980 (1) By the impotence of the husband;

FACTS:Elizabeth Mejias, married to Crispin (2) By the fact that the husband and wife were
Anahaw, allegedly had intercourse with separately, in such a way that access was not
petitioner Antonio Macadangdang sometime in possible;
March 1967. She also alleged that due to the
affair, she and her husband separated in (3) By the serious illness of the husband.
October 30, 1967, or 7 months or 210 dats
following the illicit encounter, she gave birth to a Art. 256. The child shall be presumed legitimate,
baby boy who she named Rolando although the mother may have declared against
Macadangdang in baptismal rites. its legitimacy or may have been sentenced as
an adulteress.
Records also disclose that in 1972 respondent
filed a complaint for recognition and support Art. 257. Should the wife commit adultery at or
against petitioner. The complaint was dismissed. about the time of the conception of the child, but
On appeal, the CA reversed the CFI decision, there was no physical impossibility of access
declaring minor Rolando to be an illegitimate between her and her husband as set forth in
son of Rolando Macadangdang. The motion for article 255, the child is prima facie presumed to
reconsideration filed by petitioner was denied. be illegitimate if it appears highly improbable, for
Hence, this petition. ethnic reasons, that the child is that of the
husband. For the purposes of this article, the Whether or not respondent and her husband
wife's adultery need not be proved in a criminal were separated would be immaterial to the
case. resolution of the status of the child Rolando.
What should really matter is the fact that during
xxx xxx xxx the initial one hundred twenty days of the three
hundred which preceded the birth of the
Sec. 4. Quasi-conclusive presumptions of renamed child, no concrete or even substantial
legitimacy- proof was presented to establish physical
impossibility of access between respondent and
(a) Children born after one hundred eighty days her spouse. From her very revealing testimony,
following the celebration of the marriage, and respondent declared that she was bringing two
before three hundred days following its sacks of rice to Samal for her children; that her
dissolution or the separation of the spouses four children by her husband in her mother's
shall be presumed legitimate. house in the said town; that her alleged
estranged husband also lived in her mother's
Against presumption no evidence be admitted place. It should also be noted that even during
other than that of the physical impossibility of the her affair with petitioner and right after her
husband's having access to his wife within the delivery, respondent went to her mother's house
first one hundred and twenty days of the three in Samal for treatment.
hundred which preceded the birth of the child.
The baby boy subject of this controversy was
This physical impossibility may be caused: born on October 30, 1967, only seven (7)
months after March, 1967 when the "incident" or
[1] By the impotence of the husband first illicit intercourse between respondent and
petitioner took place, and also, seven months
[2] By the fact that the husband and the wife from their separation (if there really was a
were living separately, in such a way that access separation). It must be noted that as of March,
was not possible; 1967, respondent and Crispin Anahaw had
already four children; hence, they had been
[3] By the serious illness of the husband; married years before such date. The birth of
Rolando came more than one hundred eighty
(b) The child shall be presumed legitimate 180 days following the celebration of the said
although the mother may have declared against marriage and before 300 days following the
its legitimacy or may have been sentenced as alleged separation between aforenamed
an adulteress. spouses.

(c) Should the wife commit adultery at or about Under the aforequoted Article 255 of the Civil
the time of the conception of the child, but there Code, the child Rolando is conclusively
was no physical impossibility of access between presumed to be the legitimate son of respondent
her and her husband as set forth above, the and her husband.
child is presumed legitimate, unless it appears
highly improbable, for ethnic reasons, that the The fact that the child was born a mere seven
child is that of the husband. For the purpose of (7) months after the initial sexual contact
the rule, the wife's adultery need not be proved between petitioner and respondent is another
in a criminal case. ... (Rule 131, Rules of Court). proof that the said child was not of petitioner
since, from indications, he came out as a normal
--- full-term baby.
(2) No. It must be stressed that Article 256 of the house and apartment in Quezon City. Upon the
Civil Code which provides that the child is death of Teodora in 1983, her surviving spouse,
presumed legitimate although the mother may Martin, adjudicated unto himself the subject
have declared against its legitimacy or may have property, via an affidavit of extrajudicial
been sentenced as an adulteress has been settlement, as sole heir thereof. In 1988 Martin
adopted for two solid reasons. First, in a fit of sold the lot to private respondents Teodora
anger, or to arouse jealousy in the husband, the Domingo. Later that year, Martin died.
wife may have made this declaration. Second,
the article is established as a guaranty in favor Thus, an action for reconveyance was filed by
of the children whose condition should not be petitioners, as niece and nephew of Teodora
under the mercy of the passions of their parents. Guerrero, against private respondent before the
The husband whose honor if offended, that is, RTC over the subject property, claiming that
being aware of his wife's adultery, may obtain they were entitled to inherit one-half of the
from the guilty spouse by means of coercion, a property in question by right of representation,
confession against the legitimacy of the child presenting documentary evidence to prove filial
which may really be only a confession of her relation. The private respondent filed a demurrer
guilt. Or the wife, out of vengeance and spite, to evidence on the ground that petitioners failed
may declare the as not her husband's although to prove legitimate filiation with the deceased
the statement be false. But there is another Teodora Guerrero in accordance with 172 of the
reason which is more powerful, demanding the Family Code.
exclusion of proof of confession or adultery, and
it is, that at the moment of conception, it cannot The RTC granted the demurrer and dismissed
be determined when a woman cohabits during the complaint for reconveyance. On appeal, the
the same period with two men, by whom the Court of Appeals affirmed the RTC judgment.
child was begotten, it being possible that it be Hence, this appeal.
the husband himself.
ISSUE: Whether the petitioners failed to meet
Hence, in general, good morals and public policy the quantum of proof required by Article 172 of
require that a mother should not be permitted to the Family Code to establish legitimacy and
assert the illegitimacy of a child born in wedlock filiation.
in order to obtain some benefit for herself.
RULING: No. It seems that both the RTC and
The law is not willing that the child be declared CA have regrettably overlooked the universally
illegitimate to suit the whims and purposes of recognized presumption on legitimacy. There is
either parent, nor Merely upon evidence that no no presumption of the la more firmly established
actual act of sexual intercourse occurred and founded on sounder morality and more
between husband and wife at or about the time convincing reason than the presumption that
the wife became pregnant. Thus, where the children born in wedlock are legitimate. And
husband denies having any intercourse with his settled is the rule that the issue of legitimacy
wife, the child was still presumed legitimate. cannot be attacked collaterally.

The legitimacy of the child cannot be contested

48. CORAZON DEZOLLER TISON and RENE by way of defense or as a collateral issue in
R. DEZOLLER v. COURT OF APPEALS and another action for a different purpose. The
TEODORA DOMINGO necessity of an independent action directly
G.R. No. 121027, July 31, 1997 impugning the legitimacy is more clearly
expressed in the Mexican Code (Article 335)
FACTS: Spouses Martin Guerrero and Teodora which provides: The contest of the legitimacy of
Dezoller Guerrero owned a parcel of land with a a child by the husband or his heirs must be
made by proper complaint before the competent 49. MARIA DEL ROSARIO MARIATEGUIO, et
court; any contest made in any other way is al. v. COURT OF APPEALS
void. This principle applies under our Family G.R. No. L-57062, January 24, 1992
Code. Articles 170 and 171 of the code confirm
this view, because they refer to the action to FACTS: Lupo Mariategui contracted 3 marriages
impugn the legitimacy. This action can be during his lifetime. Lupo and Felipa, the third
brought only by the husband or his heirs and wife, got married in 1930 and begot 3 children.
within the periods fixed in the present articles. Felipa died in 1941. At the time of his death in
1953, Lupo left certain properties which he
Upon the expiration of the periods provided in acquired when he was still unmarried, described
Article 170, the action to impugn the legitimacy as Lots Nos. 163, 66, 1346, and 156 of the
of a child can no longer be brought. The status Muntinlipa Estate.
conferred by the presumption, therefore,
becomes fixed, and can no longer be In 1962 Lupo’s descendants by his first and
questioned. The obvious intention of the law is second marriages executed a deed of
to prevent the status of a child born in wedlock extrajudicial partition whereby they adjudicated
from being in a state of uncertainty for a long unto themselves Lot No. 163 of the Muntinlupa
time. It also aims to force early action to settle Estate. Thus, the subdivision of the said lot into
any doubt as to the paternity of such child, so Lots Nos. 163-A to 163-H, for which separate
that the evidence material to the matter, which transfer certificates of title were issued to the
must necessarily be facts occurring during the respective parties.
period of the conception of the child, may still be
easily available. In 1973 Lupo’s children by his third marriage
filed with the lower court an amended complaint
The issue, therefore, as to whether petitioners claiming that Lot No. 163 together with Lots Nos.
are the legitimate children of Hermogenes 669, 1346, and 154 were owned by their
Dezoller cannot be properly controverted in the common father, and that they were deprived of
present action for reconveyance. This is aside, their respective shares in the lots.
of course, from the further consideration that
private respondent is not the proper party to The petitioners filed a motion to dismiss on the
impugn the legitimacy of herein petitioners. The grounds of lack of cause of action and
presumption consequently continues to operate prescription, specifically contending that the
in favor of petitioners unless and until it is complaint was one for recognition of natural
rebutted. children. The motion was denied. Subsequently,
the complaint was dismissed by the trial court.
Even assuming that the issue is allowed to be
resolved in this case, the burden of proof rests On appeal, the CA rendered a decision
not on herein petitioners who have the benefit of declaring all the children and descendants of
the presumption in their favor, but on private Lupo as entitled to equal shares in the estate of
respondent who is disputing the same. This fact Lupo Mariategui. The motion for reconsideration
alone should have been sufficient cause for the was denied. Hence, this petition.
trial court to exercise appropriate caution before
acting, as it did, on the demurrer to evidence. It ISSUES: (1) Whether prescription barred private
would have delimited the issues for resolution, respondents’ right to demand the partition of the
as well as the time and effort necessitated estate; (2) Whether the private respondents who
thereby. belatedly filed the action of recognition, were
able to prove successional rights over said
RULING: (2)In view of the foregoing, there can be no
(1)A perusal of the entire allegations of the other conclusion than that private respondents
complaint, however, shows that the action is are legitimate children and heirs of Lupo
principally one of partition. The allegation with Mariategui and therefore, the time limitation
respect to the status of the private respondents prescribed in Article 285 for filing an action for
was raised only collaterally to assert their rights recognition is inapplicable to this case.
in the estate of the deceased. Hence, the Court Corollarily, prescription does not run against
of Appeals correctly adopted the settled rule that private respondents with respect to the filing of
the nature of an action filed in court is the action for partition so long as the heirs for
determined by the facts alleged in the complaint whose benefit prescription is invoked, have not
constituting the cause of action. expressly or impliedly repudiated the co-
ownership. In other words, prescription of an
With respect to the legal basis of private action for partition does not lie except when the
respondents’ demand for partition, the CA co-ownership is properly repudiated by the co-
correctly held that the private respondents are owner.
legitimate children of the deceased.
Otherwise stated, a co-owner cannot acquire by
A marriage may be presumed to have taken prescription the share of the other co-owners
place between Lupo and Felipa. The laws absent a clear repudiation of co-ownership duly
presume that a man and a woman, deporting communicated to the other co-owners.
themselves as husband and wife, have entered Furthermore, an action to demand partition is
into a lawful contract of marriage; that a child imprescriptible and cannot be barred by laches.
born in lawful wedlock, there being no divorce, On the other hand, an action for partition may be
absolute or from bed and board is legitimate; seen to be at once an action for declaration of
and that things have happened according to the co-ownership and for segregation and
ordinary course of nature and the ordinary habits conveyance of a determinate portion of the
of life. property involved.

Article 172 of the said Code provides that the Petitioners' registration of the properties in their
filiation of legitimate children may be established names in 1971 did not operate as a valid
by the record of birth appearing in the civil repudiation of the co-ownership. Inasmuch as
register or a final judgment or by the open and petitioners registered the properties in their
continuous possession of the status of a names in fraud of their co-heirs prescription can
legitimate child. only be deemed to have commenced from the
time private respondents discovered the
Evidence on record proves the legitimate filiation petitioners' act of defraudation. Hence,
of the private respondents. Jacinto's birth prescription definitely may not be invoked by
certificate is a record of birth referred to in the petitioners because private respondents
said article. Again, no evidence which tends to commenced the instant action barely two
disprove facts contained therein was adduced months after learning that petitioners had
before the lower court. In the case of the two registered in their names the lots involved.
other private respondents, Julian and Paulina,
they may not have presented in evidence any of
the documents required by Article 172 but they MIGUELA CAMPOS ONG, v. COURT OF
continuously enjoyed the status of children of APPEALS
Lupo Mariategui in the same manner as their G.R. No. 95386, May 29, 1997
brother Jacinto.
FACTS: Petitioner Miguela Campos Ong is the
surviving spouse of Manuel Ong, who died in
1990 while the case was pending in the CA. reason has been given why she should testify
Private respondents Alfredo, Jr. and Robert, falsely against Manuel Ong.
both surnamed Ong, are children of Saturnina
Caballes allegedly by Manuel Ong. They Two circumstances are mentioned which
brought this case to compel Manuel Ong to allegedly make it improbable that Manuel Ong
recognize them as his illegitimate children and to was the father of private respondents. The first
give them support. is that Saturnina Caballes admitted having
cohabited with another man before meeting
After trial, private respondents were found to be Manuel Ong. The records show, however, that
the illegitimate children of Manuel Ong in the man, who was a paralytic, was taken by his
accordance with Article 283, paragraphs 2 and 4 mother in 1953, before Saturnina started having
of the Civil Code. On appeal, the decision was an affair with Manuel Ong in 1954. Private
affirmed by the CA. The motion for reconsidered respondent Alfredo Ong, Jr. was born on June
was likewise denied. 28, 1955, more than a year after the paralytic
had left Saturnina. The other private respondent,
ISSUE: Whether the CA erred in affirming the Robert Caballes, was born on August 17, 1956.
trial court ruling declaring the private Hence, private respondents could not have been
respondents as illegitimate children of Manuel conceived during the period of cohabitation of
Ong. their mother with the unidentified paralytic.

RULING: No. To begin with, factual questions as The other circumstance mentioned is that
determined by the trial court, especially rulings Manuel Ong was allegedly sterile. Ong claimed
on the credibility of witnesses, when affirmed by that, in addition to petitioner Miguela Campos
the appellate court, are binding on this Court Ong, he lived with a commonlaw wife, Dolores
and are accorded utmost respect. In this case, Dy, and with another woman named Anatolia
no sufficient reason has been shown for this Veloria but he had no child with anyone of them.
Court not to adhere to the general rule. He said that during World War II he got sick and
was treated by a certain Dr. Deiparine who
Inconsistencies there are in the testimony of allegedly told him that as a result of his illness
Saturnina Caballes, but they are not of such a he would not be able to beget any child. Ong
nature as to put in doubt the testimony of further claimed that he cohabited with Dolores
Saturnina that Manuel Ong was the father of Dy before and during his marriage with petitioner
private respondents Alfredo Ong, Jr. and Robert Miguela Campos Ong. His inability to procreate
Caballes. The discrepancies concern minor is said to be the reason why petitioner and
details and, if at all, only show that Saturnina Manuel Ong raised six children not related to
Caballes was an uncoached witness. Saturnina them by blood.
testified that shortly after getting acquainted with
each other, she and Manuel Ong had relation We think both the trial court and the Court of
and in fact lived together at A. Lopez Street in Appeals correctly dismissed claims that Manuel
Cebu City for four months, and that Manuel Ong Ong was sterile and therefore could not have
gave her support consisting of money and the been the father of private respondents. No
necessities of life, like rice. competent medical testimony was presented to
prove this claim. His testimony that he had been
Saturninas testimony was corroborated by told by a certain Dr. Deiparine that because of
Constancia Lim Monteclaros. Constancia was an illness he contracted during the war he would
the person who introduced Saturnina to Manuel no longer be able to procreate is plain hearsay.
Ong. Constancia and Vicente Sy, Manuel Ongs
close friend, lived together in a room in the On the other hand, the claim that although he
house of Ong. She knew Manuel very well. No lived with three women (including petitioner) no
one bore him a child is belied by the fact that he born during such relationship and constitutes
acknowledged a certain Lourdes Balili as his evidence of Ongs paternity. This relationship
natural child. was further established through the testimony of
Constancia Lim. The evidence for private
We agree that this case does not fall under pars. respondents is not negated by the admission of
2 and 3 of Art. 283 of the Civil Code. As Saturnina Caballes that she had relation with
petitioner well states, the four times during which another man before, because the relationship
Manuel Ong met Alfredo and gave the latter terminated at least a year before the birth of
money cannot be considered proof of Alfredo Ong, Jr. and two years before the birth
continuous possession of the status of a child. of the second child Robert Caballes.
The fathers conduct toward his son must be
spontaneous and uninterrupted for this ground
to exist. Here there are no acts shown of Manuel CASIMIRO MENDOZA v. COURT OF
Ong treating Alfredo Ong, Jr. as his son except APPEALS
on the four occasions during which they met. In G.R. No. 86302, September 24, 1991
the case of Robert Caballes, there is no proof at
all that Manuel Ong treated him as his son. FACTS: A complaint for compulsory recognition
was filed in the RTC of Cebu by private
Nor can it be said that there was proof of respondent Teopista Toring Tufiacao, alleging
cohabitation in this case. While Saturnina that she was born in 1930 to Brigida Toring, then
Caballes testified that she and Manuel Ong lived single, and petitioner Casimiro Mendoza,
together for four months as husband and wife in married at that time to Emiliana Barrientos. She
order to justify a finding of cohabitation, the averred that Mendoza recognized her as an
relationship was not open and public so as to illegitimate child by treating her as such and
constitute cohabitation.[16] While the parties are according her the rights and privileges of a
not required to hold themselves out as husband recognized illegitimate child.
and wife, neither must they act clandestinely or
secretly, otherwise they will be considered to Petitioner specifically denied the allegations. He
have merely engaged in illicit sexual himself did not testify because of his advanced
intercourse.[17] age (then 91 years old), but Vicente Toring,
Teopista’s brother, took the stand to resist
Nonetheless, we hold that the evidence in this Teopista’s claim. Vicente, who professed to be
case sufficiently makes this case fall under the Casimiro’s only illegitimate child by Brigida,
last paragraph of Art. 283, i.e., any other declared that Teopista’s father was not
evidence showing that Manuel Ong was the Casimiro.
father of private respondents. In Ilano vs. Court
of Appeals,[18] this Court held that the phrase The RTC rejected Teopista’s claim that she was
any evidence or proof in the last paragraph of in continuous possession of the status of a child
Art. 283 operates as a blanket provision of the alleged father. On appeal, the CA
covering all cases in the preceding ones, so that disagreed and found that Teopista has
evidence, even though insufficient to constitute sufficiently proven her continuous possession of
proof under the other paragraphs, may such status. The motion for reconsideration was
nonetheless be enough to qualify the case under denied.
par. 4. In this case, the testimony of Saturnina
Caballes that she had illicit sexual relation with The counsel, now acting for Vicente Toring,
Manuel Ong over a long period (1954-1957) asked the Court to substitute the latter for the
which, had it been openly done, would have deceased Casimiro Mendoza in the present
constituted cohabitation under par. 3 is proof petition. The Court allowed the substitution, it
that private respondents were conceived and
appearing that Vicente Toring was Casimiro’s that such instances were "off-and-on," not
illegitimate son. continuous and intermittent. Indeed, the plaintiff
s testimony on this point is tenuous as in one
ISSUE: Whether the CA erred in ruling that breath she said that her mother solely spent for
Teopista was Casimiro’s illegitimate daughter. her education and in another that Casimiro
helped in supporting her.
RULING: To establish "the open and continuous
possession of the status of an illegitimate child," But although Teopista has failed to show that
it is necessary to comply with certain she was in open and continuous possession of
jurisprudential requirements. "Continuous" does the status of an illegitimate child of Casimiro, we
not mean that the concession of status shall find that she has nevertheless established that
continue forever but only that it shall not be of an status by another method.
intermittent character while it continues. The
possession of such status means that the father What both the trial court and the respondent
has treated the child as his own, directly and not court did not take into account is that an
through others, spontaneously and without illegitimate child is allowed to establish his
concealment though without publicity (since the claimed filiation by "any other means allowed by
relation is illegitimate). There must be a showing the Rules of Court and special laws," according
of the permanent intention of the supposed to the Civil Code, or "by evidence or proof in his
father to consider the child as his own, by favor that the defendant is her father," according
continuous and clear manifestation of paternal to the Family Code. Such evidence may consist
affection and care. of his baptismal certificate, a judicial admission,
a family Bible in which his name has been
With these guidelines in mind, we agree with the entered, common reputation respecting his
trial court that Teopista has not been in pedigree, admission by silence, the testimonies
continuous possession of the status of a of witnesses, and other kinds of proof admissible
recognized illegitimate child of Casimiro under Rule 130 of the Rules of Court.
Mendoza, under both Article 283 of the Civil
Code and Article 172 of the Family Code. The trial court conceded that "the defendant's
parents, as well as the plaintiff himself, told
The plaintiff lived with her mother and not with Gaudencio Mendoza and Isaac Mendoza, that
the defendant although they were both residents Teopista was the daughter of the defendant." It
of Omapad, Mandaue City. It is true, as the should have probed this matter further in light of
respondent court observed, that this could have Rule 130, Section 39, of the Rules of Court,
been because defendant had a legitimate wife. providing as follows:
However, it is not unusual for a father to take his
illegitimate child into his house to live with him Sec. 39. — Act or declarations about pedigree.
and his legitimate wife, especially if the couple is — The act or declaration of a person deceased,
childless, as in this case. In fact, Vicente Toring, or unable to testify, in respect to the pedigree of
who also claimed to be an illegitimate child of another person related to him by birth or
Casimiro, lived with the latter and his wife, marriage, may be received in evidence where it
apparently without objection from the latter. We occurred before the controversy, and the
also note that Teopista did not use the surname relationship between the two persons is shown
of Casimiro although this is, of course, not by evidence other than such act or declaration.
decisive of one's status. No less significantly, the The word "pedigree" includes relationship, family
regularity of defendant's act of giving money to genealogy, birth, marriage, death, the dates
the plaintiff through Gaudencio Mendoza and when and the places where these facts
Isaac Mendoza has not been sufficiently occurred, and the names of the relatives. It
established. The trial court correctly concluded
embraces also facts of family history intimately the filiation of Teopista and the paternity of
connected with pedigree. Casimiro, which were the very issues involved in
the complaint for compulsory recognition. The
The statement of the trial court regarding declarations were made before the complaint
Teopista's parentage is not entirely accurate. To was filed by Teopista or before the controversy
set the record straight, we will stress that it was arose between her and Casimiro. Finally, the
only Isaac Mendoza who testified on this relationship between the declarants and
question of pedigree, and he did not cite Casimiro has been established by evidence
Casimiro's father. His testimony was that he was other than such declaration, consisting of the
informed by his father Hipolito, who was extrajudicial partition of the estate of Florencio
Casimiro's brother, and Brigida Mendoza, Mendoza, in which Casimiro was mentioned as
Casimiro's own mother, that Teopista was one of his heirs.
Casimiro's illegitimate daughter.
The said declarations have not been refuted.
Such acts or declarations may be received in Casimiro could have done this by deposition if
evidence as an exception to the hearsay rule he was too old and weak to testify at the trial of
because "it is the best the nature of the case the case.
admits and because greater evils are
apprehended from the rejection of such proof The Court held that by virtue of the above-
than from its admission. Nevertheless, precisely discussed declarations, and in view of the other
because of its nature as hearsay evidence, there circumstances of this case, 'reopista Toring
are certain safeguards against its abuse. Tufiacao has proved that she is the illegitimate
Commenting on this provision, Francisco daughter of Casimiro Mendoza and is entitled to
enumerates the following requisites that have to be recognized as such. In so holding, we give
be complied with before the act or declaration effect to the policy of the Civil Code and the
regarding pedigree may be admitted in Family Code to liberalize the rule on the
evidence: investigation of "the paternity of illegitimate
children, without prejudice to the right of the
1. The declarant is dead or unable to testify. alleged parent to resist the claimed status with
his own defenses, including evidence now
2. The pedigree must be in issue. obtainable through the facilities of modern
medicine and technology.
3. The declarant must be a relative of the person
whose pedigree is in issue. G.R. No. 86302 September 24, 1991

4. The declaration must be made before the CASIMIRO MENDOZA, petitioner,

controversy arose. vs.
5. The relationship between the declarant and TORING TUÑACAO, respondents.
the person whose pedigree is in question must
be shown by evidence other than such
declaration. FACTS

All the above requisites are present in the case Respondent Teopista is claiming to be
at bar. The persons who made the declarations recognized as the illegitimate child of herein
about the pedigree of Teopista, namely, the pettioner.
mother of Casimiro, Brigida Mendoza, and his
brother, Hipolito, were both dead at the time of The complaint was filed on August 21, 1981, in
Isaac's testimony. The declarations referred to the Regional Trial Court in Cebu City. Teopista
Toring Tufiacao, the herein private respondent, it is necessary to comply with certain
alleged that she was born on August 20, 1930, jurisprudential requirements. "Continuous" does
to Brigida Toring, who was then single, and not mean that the concession of status shall
defendant Casimiro Mendoza, married at that continue forever but only that it shall not be of an
time to Emiliana Barrientos. She averred that intermittent character while it continues.10 The
Mendoza recognized her as an illegitimate child possession of such status means that the father
by treating her as such and according her the has treated the child as his own, directly and not
rights and privileges of a recognized illegitimate through others, spontaneously and without
child. concealment though without publicity (since the
relation is illegitimate).11 There must be a
Casimiro Mendoza, then already 91 years old, showing of the permanent intention of the
specifically denied the plaintiffs allegations and supposed father to consider the child as his
set up a counterclaim for damages and own, by continuous and clear manifestation of
attorney's fees. paternal affection and care.12
With these guidelines in mind, we agree with the
Amplifying on her complaint, Teopista testified trial court that Teopista has not been in
that it was her mother who told her that her continuous possession of the status of a
father was Casimiro. She called him Papa Miroy. recognized illegitimate child of Casimiro
She lived with her mother because Casimiro Mendoza, under both Article 283 of the Civil
was married but she used to visit him at his Code and Article 172 of the Family Code.
house. When she married Valentin Tufiacao, The plaintiff lived with her mother and not with
Casimiro bought a passenger truck and the defendant although they were both residents
engaged him to drive it so he could have a of Omapad, Mandaue City. It is true, as the
livelihood. Casimiro later sold the truck but gave respondent court observed, that this could have
the proceeds of the sale to her and her husband. been because defendant had a legitimate wife.
In 1977, Casimiro allowed her son, Lolito However, it is not unusual for a father to take his
Tufiacao, to build a house on his lot and later he illegitimate child into his house to live with him
gave her money to buy her own lot from her and his legitimate wife, especially if the couple is
brother, Vicente Toring. On February 14, 1977, childless, as in this case. In fact, Vicente Toring,
Casimiro opened a joint savings account with who also claimed to be an illegitimate child of
her as a co-depositor at the Mandaue City Casimiro, lived with the latter and his wife,
branch of the Philippine Commercial and apparently without objection from the latter. We
Industrial Bank. Two years later, Margarita Bate, also note that Teopista did not use the surname
Casimiro's adopted daughter, took the passbook of Casimiro although this is, of course, not
from her, but Casimiro ordered it returned to her decisive of one's status. No less significantly, the
after admonishing Margarita.1 regularity of defendant's act of giving money to
the plaintiff through Gaudencio Mendoza and
ISSUE Isaac Mendoza has not been sufficiently
established. The trial court correctly concluded
Whether respondent Teopesita satisfied the that such instances were "off-and-on," not
burden of proof to prove filiation continuous and intermittent. Indeed, the plaintiff
s testimony on this point is tenuous as in one
HELD breath she said that her mother solely spent for
her education and in another that Casimiro
Yes. Failed to satisfy open and continuous helped in supporting her.13
possession, but satisfied ay other means. But although Teopista has failed to show that
she was in open and continuous possession of
To establish "the open and continuous the status of an illegitimate child of Casimiro, we
possession of the status of an illegitimate child,"
find that she has nevertheless established that Casimiro's own mother, that Teopista was
status by another method. Casimiro's illegitimate daughter.15
What both the trial court and the respondent Such acts or declarations may be received in
court did not take into account is that an evidence as an exception to the hearsay rule
illegitimate child is allowed to establish his because "it is the best the nature of the case
claimed filiation by "any other means allowed by admits and because greater evils are
the Rules of Court and special laws," according apprehended from the rejection of such proof
to the Civil Code, or "by evidence or proof in his than from its admission.16 Nevertheless,
favor that the defendant is her father," according precisely because of its nature as hearsay
to the Family Code. Such evidence may consist evidence, there are certain safeguards against
of his baptismal certificate, a judicial admission, its abuse. Commenting on this provision,
a family Bible in which his name has been Francisco enumerates the following requisites
entered, common reputation respecting his that have to be complied with before the act or
pedigree, admission by silence, the testimonies declaration regarding pedigree may be admitted
of witnesses, and other kinds of proof admissible in evidence:
under Rule 130 of the Rules of Court.14 1. The declarant is dead or unable to
The trial court conceded that "the defendant's testify.
parents, as well as the plaintiff himself, told 2. The pedigree must be in issue.
Gaudencio Mendoza and Isaac Mendoza, that 3. The declarant must be a relative of
Teopista was the daughter of the defendant." It the person whose pedigree is in issue.
should have probed this matter further in light of 4. The declaration must be made before
Rule 130, Section 39, of the Rules of Court, the controversy arose.
providing as follows: 5. The relationship between the
Sec. 39. — Act or declarations about declarant and the person whose
pedigree. — The act or declaration of a pedigree is in question must be shown
person deceased, or unable to testify, in by evidence other than such
respect to the pedigree of another declaration.17
person related to him by birth or All the above requisites are present in the case
marriage, may be received in evidence at bar. The persons who made the declarations
where it occurred before the about the pedigree of Teopista, namely, the
controversy, and the relationship mother of Casimiro, Brigida Mendoza, and his
between the two persons is shown by brother, Hipolito, were both dead at the time of
evidence other than such act or Isaac's testimony. The declarations referred to
declaration. The word "pedigree" the filiation of Teopista and the paternity of
includes relationship, family genealogy, Casimiro, which were the very issues involved in
birth, marriage, death, the dates when the complaint for compulsory recognition. The
and the places where these facts declarations were made before the complaint
occurred, and the names of the was filed by Teopista or before the controversy
relatives. It embraces also facts of arose between her and Casimiro. Finally, the
family history intimately connected with relationship between the declarants and
pedigree. Casimiro has been established by evidence
The statement of the trial court regarding other than such declaration, consisting of the
Teopista's parentage is not entirely accurate. To extrajudicial partition of the estate of Florencio
set the record straight, we will stress that it was Mendoza, in which Casimiro was mentioned as
only Isaac Mendoza who testified on this one of his heirs.18
question of pedigree, and he did not cite The said declarations have not been refuted.
Casimiro's father. His testimony was that he was Casimiro could have done this by deposition if
informed by his father Hipolito, who was he was too old and weak to testify at the trial of
Casimiro's brother, and Brigida Mendoza, the case.
If we consider the other circumstances narrated retroactively, since Bobiles did not file jointly
under oath by the private respondent and her together with her husband.
witnesses, such as the financial doles made by ISSUE
Wheher the family code should be applied
Casimiro to Brigida Toring, the hiring of
Teopista's husband to drive the passenger truck Whether Bobiles’s husband should likewise be
of Casimiro, who later sold the vehicle and gave considered as adopter
the proceeds of the sale to Teopista and her HELD
husband, the permission he gave Lolito Tufiacao NO.
to build a house on his land after he found that Article 246 of the Family Code provides for
the latter was living on a rented lot, and, no less retroactive effect of appropriate relevant
provisions thereof, subject to the qualification
remarkably, the joint savings account Casimiro
that such retrospective application
opened with Teopista, we can reasonably will not prejudice or impair vested or acquired
conclude that Teopista was the illegitimate rights in accordance with the Civil Code or other
daughter of Casimiro Mendoza. laws.
We hold that by virtue of the above-discussed A vested right is one whose existence, effectivity
declarations, and in view of the other and extent does not depend upon events foreign
circumstances of this case, 'reopista Toring to the will of the holder. 9 The term expresses
the concept of present fixed interest which in
Tufiacao has proved that she is the illegitimate
right reason and natural justice should be
daughter of Casimiro Mendoza and is entitled to protected against arbitrary State action, or an
be recognized as such. In so holding, we give innately just and imperative right which
effect to the policy of the Civil Code and the enlightened free society, sensitive to inherent
Family Code to liberalize the rule on the and irrefragable individual rights, cannot
investigation of "the paternity of illegitimate deny. 10 Vested rights include not only legal or
equitable title to the enforcement of a demand,
children, without prejudice to the right of the
but also an exemption from new obligations
alleged parent to resist the claimed status with created after the right has vested. 11
his own defenses, including evidence now Under the Child and Youth Welfare Code,
obtainable through the facilities of modern private respondent had the right to file a petition
medicine and technology. for adoption by herself, without joining her
husband therein. When Mrs. Bobiles filed her
REPUBLIC v. COURT OF APPEALS and petition, she was exercising her explicit and
ZENAIDA C. BOBILES unconditional right under said law. Upon her
FACTS filing thereof, her right to file such petition alone
Republic appeals for the reversal of the and to have the same proceed to final
judgment confirming adoption in favor of adjudication, in accordance with the law in force
at the time, was already vested and cannot be
prejudiced or impaired by the enactment of a
The petition for adoption was filed by private new law.
respondent Zenaida C. Bobiles on February 2, When private respondent filed her petition in
1988, when the law applicable was Presidential Special Proceeding No. 1386, the trial court
Decree No. 603, the Child and Youth Welfare acquired jurisdiction thereover in accordance
Code. Under said code, a petition for adoption with the governing law. Jurisdiction being a
may be filed by either of the spouses or by both matter of substantive law, the established rule is
that the jurisdiction of the court is determined by
of them. However, after the trial court rendered
the statute in force at the time of the
its decision and while the case was pending on commencement of the action.12 We do not find
appeal in the Court of Appeals, Executive Order in the present case such facts as would
No. 209, the Family Code, took effect on August constitute it as an exception to the rule.
3, 1988. Under the said new law, joint adoption
by husband and wife is mandatory. When private respondent filed her petition in
Special Proceeding No. 1386, the trial court
Republic argues that the adoption should have
acquired jurisdiction thereover in accordance
been dismissed, by applying the family code
with the governing law. Jurisdiction being a
matter of substantive law, the established rule is have modified the trial court's decision by
that the jurisdiction of the court is determined by granting the adoption in favor of private
the statute in force at the time of the respondent Zenaida C. Bobiles only, her
commencement of the action.12 We do not find husband not being a petitioner. We do not
in the present case such facts as would consider this as a tenable position and,
constitute it as an exception to the rule. accordingly, reject the same.
The first error assigned by petitioner warrants a Although Dioscoro Bobiles was not named as
review of applicable local and foreign one of the petitioners in the petition for adoption
jurisprudence. For that purpose, we start with filed by his wife, his affidavit of consent,
the premise that Article 185 of the Family Code attached to the petition as Annex "B" and
is remedial in nature. Procedural statutes are expressly made an integral part thereof, shows
ordinarily accorded a retrospective construction that he himself actually joined his wife in
in the sense that they may be applied to pending adopting the child. The pertinent parts of his
actions and proceedings, as well as to future written consent read as follows:
actions. However, they will not be so applied as xxx xxx xxx
to defeat procedural steps completed before 2. That my wife, ZENAIDA O.
their enactment. 13 CORTEZA BOBILES and I
Procedural matters are governed by the law in mutually desire to adopt as our
force when they arise, and procedural statutes child, a boy named JASON
are generally retroactive in that they apply to CONDAT, still a minor being six
pending proceedings and are not confined to (6) years old, likewise residing
those begun after their enactment although, with at 18 C. Imperial Street, Legaspi
respect to such pending proceedings, they affect City, Albay, also in the
only procedural steps taken after their Philippines;
enactment. 14 3. That we are filing the
The rule that a statutory change in matters of corresponding Petition for
procedure will affect pending actions and Adoption of said minor child,
proceedings, unless the language of the act JASON CONDAT, before the
excludes them from its operation, is not so Juvenile and Domestic
extensive that it may be used to validate or Relations court, now the
invalidate proceedings taken before it goes into Regional Trial Court in Legaspi
effect, since procedure must be governed by the City, Albay in the Philippines;
law regulating it at the time the question of 4. That I, Dioscoro C. Bobiles as
procedure arises.15 the husband and father, am
The jurisdictional, as distinguished from the giving my lawful consent to this
purely procedural, aspect of a case is adoption of said minor child,
substantive in nature and is subject to a more JASON CONDAT;
stringent rule. A petition cannot be dismissed by 5. That further, my wife
reason of failure to comply with a law which was ZENAIDA O. CORTEZA
not yet in force and effect at the time. As long as BOBILES, and I have
the petition for adoption was sufficient in form continuously reared and cared
and substance in accordance with the law in for this minor child, JASON
governance at the time it was filed, the court CONDAT since birth;
acquires jurisdiction and retains it until it fully 6. That as a result thereof, my
disposes of the case. 16 To repeat, the wife and I have developed a
jurisdiction of the court is determined by the kind of maternal and paternal
statute in force at the time of the love for the boy as our very
commencement of the action. Such jurisdiction own, exercising therein the care,
of a court, whether in criminal or civil cases, concern and diligence of a good
once it attaches cannot be ousted by father toward him;
subsequent happenings or events, although of a 7. That I am executing this
character which would have prevented document, an AFFIDAVIT OF
jurisdiction from attaching in the first instance. 17 CONSENT for whatever it is
On the second issue, petitioner argues that, worth in the premises as to the
even assuming that the Family Code should not matter of adoption of this minor
apply retroactively, the Court of Appeals should child, JASON CONDAT, by my
wife ZENAIDA O. CORTEZA minors. Said guardian ad litem forthwith gave his
BOBILES and by me, written consent to the adoption. Paulina Santos,
DIOSCORO C. BOBILES, in being over fourteen years of age, likewise gave
any court of justice; (Emphasis her written consent thereto.
supplied.) 18 After due publication and hearing, the adoption
xxx xxx xxx court (CFI) rendered on August 25, 1949 a
The foregoing declarations, and his subsequent decision granting the decree of adoption.
confirmatory testimony in open court, are No appeal was taken from the aforesaid
sufficient to make him a co-petitioner. Under the decision.
circumstances then obtaining, and by reason of Subsequently — eight years later — on October
his foreign residence, he must have yielded to 21, 1957, Juliana Reyes died, in Manila, without
the legal advice that an affidavit of consent on testament. On November 25, 1957 Simplicio
his part sufficed to make him a party to the Santos filed in the Court of First Instance of
petition. This is evident from the text of his Manila a petition for the settlement of the
affidavit. Punctiliousness in language and intestate estate of Juliana Reyes.3 In said
pedantry in the formal requirements should yield petition he stated among other things that the
to and be eschewed in the higher considerations surviving heirs of the deceased are: he, as
of substantial justice. The future of an innocent surviving spouse, Paulina Santos and Aurora
child must not be compromised by arbitrary Santos, 27 and 17 years of age, respectively. In
insistence of rigid adherence to procedural rules the same petition, he asked that he be
on the form of pleadings. appointed administrator of the estate.
We see no reason why the following doctrines in Gregoria Aranzanso, alleging that she is first
American law should not apply to this case and, cousin to the deceased, filed on January 2, 1958
for that matter, in our jurisdiction. It is a settled an opposition to the petition for appointment of
rule therein that adoption statutes, as well as administrator. For her grounds she asserted that
matters of procedure leading up to adoption, Simplicio Santos" marriage to the late Juliana
should be liberally construed to carry out the Reyes was bigamous and thus void: and that the
beneficent purposes of the adoption institution adoption of Paulina Santos and Aurora Santos
and to protect the adopted child in the rights and was likewise void ab initio for want of the written
privileges coming to it as a result of the consent of their parents, who were then living
adoption. 19 The modern tendency of the courts and had not abandoned them. An answer to the
is to hold that there need not be more than a opposition was filed by Simplicio Santos on
substantial compliance with statutory March 7, 1958 and oppositor Aranzanso filed a
requirements to sustain the validity of the reply thereto on March 17, 1958.
proceeding; to refuse would be to indulge in Demetria Ventura, alleging likewise that she is
such a narrow and technical construction of the the first cousin of the deceased Juliana Reyes
statute as to defeat its intention and beneficial and adding that she is the mother of the child
results or to invalidate proceedings where every Paulina Santos, filed on March 19, 1959 an
material requirement of the statute was complied opposition to the petition of Simplicio Santos to
with. be named administrator, and, moreover,
thereunder adopted, as her own, the pleadings
Santos vs Aranzanso filed by Gregoria Aranzanso.
Facts: By order of April 6, 1959, the Court of First
A petition for adoption of Paulina Santos and Instance decided the point in dispute, ruling that
Aurora Santos was filed by Simplicio Santos and the validity of the adoption in question could not
Juliana Reyes in the Court of First Instance of be assailed collaterally in the intestate
Manila on June 4, 1949.. The petition, which proceedings (Sp. Proc. No. 34354). From the
was under oath, alleged inter alia, that the order Gregoria Aranzanso and Demetria
whereabouts of the minors' nearest of kin, Ventura appealed to the Court of Appeals.
particularly their parents, were unknown; that In its decision, promulgated on September 14,
since the outbreak of the war said minors have 1964, the Court of Appeals reversed the
been abandoned by their respective parents; appealed order, finding instead that the adoption
and that for years, since their infancy, said was null and void ab initio due to the absence of
children have continuously been in petitioners' consent thereto by the natural parents of the
care and custody. A guardian ad litem Crisanto minor children, which it deemed a jurisdictional
de Mesa, was thereafter appointed for the defect still open to collateral attack.
Aurora Santos [y] Reyes, both of whom
ISSUE are and for years have been living under
Can the adoption decree be collaterally their care and custody; that the former,
attacked, since it is void ab initio for lack of the since she was barely three months old
consent of natural parents? has already been taken care of by
them up to the present time, and the
HELD latter has been cared for since she was
No. The CA committed a reversible error. only fifteen days old. Paulina Santos [y]
In this regard it should be stated that the Court Reyes is now seventeen years old. . .
of Appeals completely relied on American . Both parents of the minors have long
jurisprudence and authorities to the effect that been unheard from and in spite of
parental consent to the adoption is a diligent efforts of the petitioners to locate
jurisdictional requisite (E.g., 2 C.J.S., Adoption them, they could not be found. The
of Children, Section 45[a] p. 435; Whetmore vs. consent to the adoption has been given
Fratello, 282 P2d 667, 670). The point to by the guardian ad litem appointed by
remember, however, is that under our law on the the Court. . . . . (Emphasis supplied.)
matter, consent by the parents to the adoption Abandonment — under persuasive American
is not an absolute requisite: rulings — imports "any conduct on the part of
SEC. 3. Consent to adoption.—There the parent which evinces a settled purpose to
shall be filed with the petition a written forgo all parental duties and relinquish all
consent to the adoption signed by the parental claims to the child". It means "neglect
child if over fourteen years of age and or refusal to perform the natural and legal
not incompetent, and by each of its obligations of care and support which parents
known living parents who is not insane owe to their children." (2 Am. Jur. 2d, Adoption,
or hopelessly intemperate or has not Sec. 32, pp. 886-887.) It can thus readily be
abandoned such child, or if there are no seen that altho the CFI judgment approving the
such parents by the general guardian or adoption does not use the word "abandoned", its
guardian ad litem of the child, or if the findings sufficiently contain a set of facts and
child is in the custody of an orphan circumstances which truly constitutes a finding
asylum, children's home, or benevolent of abandonment.
society or person, by the proper officer Coming now to the power of the Court of
or officers of such asylum, home, or Appeals to review in this case the finding of
society, or by such person; but if the abandonment made by the adoption court, we
child is illegitimate and has not been find that even under American jurisprudence —
recognized, the consent of its father to relied upon, as stated, by said Court — the
the adoption shall not be required. (Rule settled rule is that even when the jurisdiction of
100, Old Rules of Court.)4 an inferior or special tribunal depends upon the
Stated otherwise, if the natural parents have existence of a fact to be established before it,
abandoned their children, consent to the the determination of that fact by the tribunal
adoption by the guardian ad litem suffices. This cannot be questioned in a collateral attack upon
brings as to the question whether in the its order (In re McKaeg's Estate, 141 Cal. 403,
proceedings at bar the Court of Appeals can still 74 Pac. 1039, 1040; In re Camp's Estate, 131
review the evidence in the adoption case and Cal. 469, 63 Pac. 736).
conclude that it was not sufficiently established Anent this point the rulings are summed up in 2
therein that the parents of Paulina and Aurora American Jurisprudence, 2nd Series, Adoption,
Santos had abandoned them. Sec. 75, p. 922, thus:
First of all, it is not quite accurate to say that the An adoption order implies the finding of
adoption court made no determination of the fact the necessary facts and the burden of
of abandonment. As quoted earlier, it is stated in proof is on the party attacking it; it
the decision of the adoption court, that: cannot be considered void merely
From the evidence presented at the because the fact needed to show
hearing it appears that the petitioners statutory compliance is obscure. While a
have been married for the past twenty- judicial determination of some particular
seven years and have no children of fact, such as the abandonment of his
their own. They desire to adopt the next of kin to the adoption, may be
minors Paulina Santos [y] Reyes and essential to the exercise of jurisdiction to
enter the order of adoption, this does natural and legal obligations of care and
not make it essential to the jurisdictional support which parents owe to their
validity of the decree that the fact be children. The fact of abandonment,
determined upon proper evidence, or judicially determined, was essential to
necessarily in accordance with the truth; the jurisdiction; not essential that it
a mere error cannot affect the should be determined on proper
jurisdiction, and the determination must evidence, necessarily, or in accordance
stand until reversed on appeal, and with the truth, because mere error in
hence cannot be collaterally attacked. If that regard does not affect jurisdicition.
this were not the rule, the status of If jurisdiction be obtained to determine a
adopted children would always be fact, its determination wrong or on
uncertain, since the evidence might not insufficient or improper evidence is
be the same at all investigations, and immaterial oh the question of legal right
might be regarded with different effect to proceed judicially to the next step.
by different tribunals, and the adoption That is deemed to be elementary... A
might be held by one court to have been judicial determination may be contrary to
valid, while another court would hold it conclusive evidence, or legal evidence,
to have been of no avail. or without any evidence, yet cannot be
Freeman on Judgments says the same thing: impeached for want of jurisdiction. Van
In general, therefore, where the right of Fleet, Coll. Attack, Secs. 663, 665. That
the court to assume jurisdiction of a rule applies to all judicial proceedings. . .
cause and proceed to judgment ..
depends upon the ascertainment of It follows, therefore, that the Court of Appeals
facts in pais and the court retains erred in reviewing, under a collateral attack, the
jurisdiction it thereby impliedly adjudges determination of the adoption court that the
that the requisite jurisdictional facts exist parents of Paulina and Aurora Santos had
and having found such facts in favor of abandoned them. This is so even if such fact of
jurisdiction, its decision in this respect, abandonment is deemed jurisdictional, a point
whether erroneous or not, cannot be which we need not — and do not — rule upon in
questioned in a collateral proceedings, this case.
for a presumption arises in such cases,
when the validity of the judgment is DSWD vs Belen
attacked, that the necessary FACTS
jurisdictional facts were proven. . . . . In this administrative complaint initiated by
(Vol. I, Sec. 350, pp. 719-720.) Corazon M. Layug, Social Welfare Officer IV of
The Supreme Court of Wisconsin, construing a the Department of Social Welfare and
statute akin to our law in this regard, said Development (DSWD), respondent Judge
in Parsons vs. Parsons, 101 Wis. 76, 77 N.W. Antonio M. Belen, is charged with rendering an
147, 148: erroneous decree of adoption in violation of
The statute to be considered is section Article 33 of Presidential Decree No. 603,
4022, Rev. St. 1878, which reads as otherwise known as The Child and Youth
follows: "No such adoption shall be Welfare Code, and the corresponding Supreme
made without the written consent of the Court circular thereon, namely, Circular No. 12
living parents of such child unless the dated October 2, 1986.
court shall find that one of the parents As appears from the records, the spouses
has abandoned the child or gone to Desiderio Soriano and Aurora Bernardo-
parts unknown." Thus it will be seen that Soriano, both of whom are naturalized American
upon the fact being established that the citizens, filed a verified petition for adoption of
living parent has abandoned his child, their niece, the minor Zhedell Bernardo Ibea,
he is deemed by the statute to have which was docketed as Special Proceeding No.
thereby relinquished all parental right to 5830 of the Regional Trial Court of Lingayen,
be consulted in respect to the child's Pangasinan, and assigned to Branch 38
welfare, and his consent to the adoption thereof. In due time, respondent Judge Belen
is therefore dispensed with. The term granted the petition in a decision dated June 25,
"abandon" obviously means no more 1992, after finding that petitioner spouses were
than neglect or refusal to perform the highly qualified to adopt the child as their own.
Among other evidence adduced before him, adopting parents, and has submitted its report
respondent judge based his decree primarily on and recommendations on the matter to the court
the findings and recommendation of the DSWD hearing such petition. The Department of Social
that the adopting parents on the one hand and Welfare shall intervene on behalf of the child if it
the adoptee on the other hand have already finds, after such case study, that the petition
developed love and emotional attachment and should be denied.
parenting rules have been demonstrated to the Circular No. 12, as a complementary
minor. On these considerations, respondent measure, was issued by this Court precisely to
judge decided and proceeded to dispense with obviate the mishandling of adoption cases by
trial custody. Said DSWD findings and judges, particularly in respect to the
recommendations, as respondent judge aforementioned case study to be conducted in
asserted in his judgment, are contained in the accordance with Article 33 of Presidential
Adoptive Home Study Report and Child Study Decree No. 603 by the DSWD itself and
Report prepared by the local office of the DSWD involving the child to be adopted, its natural
through respondent Elma P. Vedaa.[1] parents, and the adopting parents. It definitively
However, when the minor Zhedell Bernardo directs Regional Trial Courts hearing adoption
Ibea sought to obtain the requisite travel cases:
clearance from the DSWD in order to join her "0(1) to NOTIFY the Ministry of Social Services
adoptive parents in the United States, the and Development, thru its local agency, of the
department uncovered what it considered as an filing of adoption cases or the pendency thereof
anomalous adoption decree regarding said with respect to those cases already filed;
minor. It turned out that the DSWD did not have (2) to strictly COMPLY with the requirement in
any record in its files regarding the adoption and Article 33 of the aforesaid decree x x x
that there was never any order from respondent xxx
judge for the DSWD to conduct a Home and The Staff Assistant V (Social Worker) of the
Child Study Report in the case. Furthermore, Regional Trial Courts, if any, shall coordinate
there was no directive from respondent judge for with the Ministry of Social Services and
the social welfare officer of the lower court to Development representatives in the preparation
coordinate with the DSWD on the matter of the and submittal of such case study. x x x
required reports for said minors adoption. The error on the part of both respondent
As the adoption never passed through the judge and social worker is thus all too
DSWD, it filed the present administrative evident. Pursuant to Circular No. 12, the proper
complaint against respondent judge charging course that respondent judge should have taken
him with violating Article 33 of Presidential was to notify the DSWD at the outset about the
Decree No. 603 which requires, inter alia, that commencement of Special Proceeding No. 5830
petitions for adoption shall be granted only after so that the corresponding case study could have
the DSWD has conducted and submitted a case been accordingly conducted by said department
study of the adoptee, the natural parents and the which undoubtedly has the necessary
adoptive parents. It was also alleged by the competence, more than that possessed by the
DSWD that respondent Elma P. Vedaa had court social welfare officer, to make the proper
asked for an undisclosed amount of money from recommendation. Moreover, respondent judge
the adopting parents in order to expedite the should never have merely presumed that it was
adoption case with the DSWD. routinary for the social welfare officer to
coordinate with the DSWD regarding the
ISSUE: whether the judge can be held adoption proceedings. It was his duty to exercise
admininstratively liable caution and to see to it that such coordination
was observed in the adoption proceedings,
HELD: together with all the other requirements of the
Yes. Article 33 of the Child and Youth Welfare law.
Code provides in no uncertain terms that: By respondents failure to do so, he may
No petition for adoption shall be granted unless well have wittingly or unwittingly placed in
the Department of Social Welfare, or the Social jeopardy the welfare and future of the child
Work and Counselling Division, in case of whose adoption was under
Juvenile and Domestic Relations Courts, has consideration. Adoption, after all, is in a large
made a case study of the child to be adopted, measure a legal device by which a better future
his natural parents as well as the prospective may be accorded an unfortunate child like
Zhedell Bernardo Ibea in this case. Treading on The legal issue posed by the foregoing facts is
equally sensitive legal terrain, the social welfare whether adultery is a good defense against the
officer concerned, respondent Elma P. Vedaa, respondent's claim for support pendente lite.
arrogated unto herself a matter that pertained
In Quintana v. Lerma, 24 Phil. 285, which was
exclusively to the DSWD, her task being to
coordinate with the DSWD in the preparation an action by the wife against the husband for
and submission of the relevant case study support, based upon a written contract, this
reports, and not to make the same and Court held that adultery is a good defense. This
recommend by herself the facts on which the ruling was reiterated in the subsequent cases
court was to act. of Sanchez v. Zulueta, 68 Phil. 110,
We are, however, persuaded that and Mangoma v. Macadaeg, et al., 90 Phil. 508.
respondent judge acted in good faith when he
See also Olayvar v. Olayvar, 98 Phil. 52.
stated in his decision that the DSWD submitted
the required reports to his court through The respondent Court of Appeals, in upholding
respondent Vedaa, presumably in the belief that the questioned orders of the lower court, relied
it was standard procedure for the Social Welfare on Article 292 of the Civil Code, which reads:
Officer II of a Regional Trial Court to do so in ART. 292. During the
coordination with the DSWD. We also agree with proceedings for legal
the findings of the OCA that there is no evidence separation, or for annulment of
whatsoever that respondent Vedaa sought to
marriage, the spouses and
obtain any amount from the adopting parents. In
fact, this is belied by the affidavit of the childs children shall be supported from
natural mother, Loreta Ibea. We are, therefore, the conjugal partnership
inclined to adopt a liberal view on the charges property. After the final
against respondents. judgment of legal separation, or
The judge was just censured. of annulment of marriage, the
obligation of mutual support
Lerma vs CA
Petitioner Lerma and respondent Diaz are between the spouses ceases.
husband and wife. They married on May 19, However, in case of legal
1951. On August 22, 1969 the petitioner filed a separation, the court may order
complaint for adultery against the respondent that the guilty spouse shall give
and a certain Teodoro Ramirez (Crim. Case No. support to the innocent one, the
0519 of the Court of First Instance of Rizal). On judgment specifying the terms of
November 18, 1969 the respondent filed with the such order.
lower court, presided by Judge Leonor Ines It is suggested that while adultery may be a
Luciano, a complaint1 against the petitioner for defense in an action for personal support,
legal separation and/or separation of properties, that is, support of the wife by the husband
custody of their children2 and support, with an from his own funds, it is not a defense when
urgent petition for support pendente lite for her the support is to be taken from the conjugal
and their youngest son, Gregory, who was then partnership property.
and until now is in her custody. The We do not see that the distinction is material in
respondent's complaint for legal separation is this case. In the first place Article 292 is not in
based on two grounds: concubinage and itself the source of the legal right to receive
attempt against her life. support. It merely states that the support, not
Respondent court reversed tsuch order, saying only of the spouses but also of the children, shall
that adultery is a valid defense. be taken from the conjugal property during the
ISSUE whether adultery is a good defense pendency of the legal separation proceeding. It
against respondents claim for support does not preclude the loss of such right in
certain cases. In the second place, the said
HELD article contemplates the pendency of a court
action and, inferentially at least, a prima
facie showing that the action will prosper. For if
the action is shown to be groundless the mere 303 of the same Code the obligation to give
filing thereof will not necessarily set Article 292 support shall cease "when the recipient, be he a
in operation. This is also the sense of Section 5 forced heir or not, has committed some act
of Rule 61, supra, which requires, among other which gives rise to disinheritance;" and under
things, when support pendente lite is applied for, Article 921 one of the causes for disinheriting a
that the court determine provisionally "the spouse is "when the spouse has given cause for
probable outcome of the case." legal separation." The loss of the substantive
Article 100 of the Civil Code provides that "the right to support in such a situation is
legal separation may be claimed only by the incompatible with any claim for
innocent spouse, provided there has been no support pendente lite.
condonation of or consent to the adultery or What has been said above, of course, is not
concubinage ... (and) where both spouses are meant to be a prejudgment of either the legal
offenders, a legal separation cannot be claimed separation proceeding pending in the lower
by either of them ..." court or the criminal case for adultery pending in
In a provisional sense at least, within the the Court of Appeals. It is to be understood only
meaning of Rule 61 (Section 5), the probable in the light of Rule 61, Section 5, of the Rules of
failure of the respondent's suit for legal Court, which specifically governs the subject of
separation can be foreseen since she is not an support pendente lite.
innocent spouse, having been convicted of WHEREFORE, the resolution of respondent
adultery by the Court of First Instance. It is true Court of Appeals of January 20, 1971 and the
that the judgment of conviction is on appeal in orders of respondent Juvenile and Domestic
the Court of Appeals, but the same undoubtedly Relations Court herein complained of, dated
satisfies the standard of provisional showing set December 24, 1969 and February 15, 1970, all
by the aforesaid Rule. If legal separation cannot are set aside and their enforcement enjoined,
be claimed by the guilty spouse in the first place, without prejudice to such judgment as may be
the fact that an action for that purpose is filed rendered in the pending action for legal
anyway should not be permitted to be used as a separation between the parties. No
means to obtain support pendente lite, which, pronouncement as to costs.
without such action, would be denied on the Santero vs CA
strength of the decisions of this Court Facts:
recognizing adultery as a good defense. This is a Petition for certiorari which questions
Otherwise, as pointed out by the petitioner, all the order of the respondent court granting the
that an erring spouse has to do to circumvent Motion for Allowance filed by private
such defense would be to file a suit for legal respondents. Said order reads as follows:
separation no matter how groundless. Acting on the Motion For
The right to separate support or maintenance, Allowance dated June 30, 1982
even from the conjugal partnership property, filed by Victor, Rodrigo,
presupposes the existence of a justifiable cause Anselmina and Miguel, all
for the spouse claiming such right to live surnamed Santero, thru their
separately. This is implicit in Article 104 of the guardian, Anselma Diaz, the
Civil Code, which states that after the filing of Opposition thereto dated July 8,
the petition for legal separation the spouses 1982 filed by the oppositors, the
shall be entitled to live separately from each Reply to Opposition dated July
other. A petition in bad faith, such as that filed by 12, 1982 filed by movant
one who is himself or herself guilty of an act Anselma Diaz and the Rejoinder
which constitutes a ground for legal separation dated July 26, 1982 filed by the
at the instance of the other spouse, cannot be oppositors, the Court was
considered as within the intendment of the law constrained to examine the
granting separate support. In fact under Article Motion For Allowance filed by
the herein movant last year clothing and
wherein the ground cited was medical
for support which included attendance,
educational expenses, clothing according to the
and medical necessities, which social position
was granted and said minors of the family.
were given an allowance prayed Support also
for in their motion. includes
In the Motion For Allowance in the education of
question guardian-movant the person
Anselma Diaz only followed the entitled to be
precedent of the Court which supported until
granted a similar motion last he completes
year to be spent for the school his education or
expenses of her wards. In their training for
opposition the oppositors some trade or
contend that the wards for vocation, even
whom allowance is sought are beyond the age
no longer schooling and have of majority.'
attained majority age so that citing also Section 3 of Rule 83 of the Rules of
they are no longer under Court which provides:
guardianship. They likewise Allowance to
allege that the administrator widow and
does not have sufficient funds to family. The
cover the said allowance widow and
because whatever funds are in minor or
the hands of the administrator, incapacitated
they constitute funds held in children of a
trust for the benefit of whoever deceased
will be adjudged as owners of person, during
the Kawit property from which the settlement
said administrator derives the of the estate,
only income of the intestate shall receive
estate of Pablo Santero, et al. therefrom,
In the Reply filed by the under the
guardian-movant, she admitted direction of the
some of her children are of age Court, such
and not enrolled for the first allowance as
semester due to lack of funds provided by
but will be enrolled as soon as law.'
they are given the requested From the foregoing discussion
allowances. She cited Article alone, the Court cannot deviate
290 of the Civil Code providing from its duty to give the
that: allowance sought by the wards,
Support is the fact that they need further
everything that education which should have
is indispensable been provided to them if their
for substance, deceased father were alive.
On the allegation that the funds The boy's mother, Julia Bedia-Santos, left for the
from which the allowance would United States in May 1988 to work. Petitioner
be derived are trust funds, the alleged that he is not aware of her whereabouts
Court, time and again had and his efforts to locate her in the United States
emphasized that the estate of proved futile. Private respondents claim that
the Santeros is quite big and the although abroad, their daughter Julia had been
amount to be released for sending financial support to them for her son.
allowances is indeed On September 2, 1990, petitioner along with his
insignificant and which can two brothers, visited the Bedia household, where
easily be replaced from its three-year old Leouel Jr. was staying. Private
general fund if the so-called respondents contend that through deceit and
trust fund is adjudicated to the false pretensions, petitioner abducted the boy
oppositors. and clandestinely spirited him away to his
WHEREFORE, Victor, Rodrigo, hometown in Bacong, Negros Oriental.
Anselmina and Miguel, all The spouses Bedia then filed a "Petition for
surnamed Santero are hereby Care, Custody and Control of Minor Ward
granted an allowance of two Leouel Santos Jr.," before the Regional Trial
thousand (P2,000.00) pesos Court of Iloilo City, with Santos, Sr. as
each for tuition fees, clothing respondent.2
materials and subsistence out of After an ex-parte hearing on October 8, 1990,
any available funds in the hands the trial court issued an order on the same day
of the administrator who is awarding custody of the child Leouel Santos, Jr.
ordered to reimburse to them to his grandparents, Leopoldo and Ofelia Bedia.3
the said amount after this order Petitioner appealed this Order to the Court of
shall have become final to Appeals.4 In its decision dated April 30, 1992,
enable the oppositors to file respondent appellate court affirmed the trial
their appeal by certiorari if they court's
so desire within the order. 5 His motion for reconsideration having
reglementary period. been denied,6 petitioner now brings the instant
SO ORDERED. petition for review for a reversal of the appellate
court's decision.
Santos vs CA The Court of Appeals erred, according to
Petitioner Leouel Santos, Sr., an army petitioner, in awarding custody of the boy to his
lieutenant, and Julia Bedia a nurse by grandparents and not to himself. He contends
profession, were married in Iloilo City in 1986. that since private respondents have failed to
Their union beget only one child, Leouel Santos, show that petitioner is an unfit and unsuitable
Jr. who was born July 18, 1987. father, substitute parental authority granted to
From the time the boy was released from the the boy's grandparents under Art. 214 of the
hospital until sometime thereafter, he had been Family Code is inappropriate.
in the care and custody of his maternal Petitioner adds that the reasons relied upon by
grandparents, private respondents herein, the private respondents in having custody over
Leopoldo and Ofelia Bedia. the boy, are flimsy and insufficient to deprive
Petitioner and wife Julia agreed to place Leouel him of his natural and legal right to have
Jr. in the temporary custody of the latter's custody.
parents, the respondent spouses Bedia. The On the other hand, private respondents aver that
latter alleged that they paid for all the hospital they can provide an air-conditioned room for the
bills, as well as the subsequent support of the boy and that petitioner would not be in a position
boy because petitioner could not afford to do so. to take care of his son since he has to be
assigned to different places. They also allege
that the petitioner did not give a single centavo an unsuitable and unfit parent. Private
for the boy's support and maintenance. When respondents' demonstrated love and affection
the boy was about to be released from the for the boy, notwithstanding, the legitimate father
hospital, they were the ones who paid the fees is still preferred over the grandparents. 22 The
because their daughter and petitioner had no latter's wealth is not a deciding factor,
money. Besides, Julia Bedia Santos, their particularly because there is no proof that at the
daughter, had entrusted the boy to them before present time, petitioner is in no position to
she left for the United States. Furthermore, support the boy. The fact that he was unable to
petitioner's use of trickery and deceit in provide financial support for his minor son from
abducting the child in 1990, after being birth up to over three years when he took the
hospitably treated by private respondents, does boy from his in-laws without permission, should
not speak well of his fitness and suitability as a not be sufficient reason to strip him of his
parent. permanent right to the child's custody. While
The Bedias argue that although the law petitioner's previous inattention is inexcusable
recognizes the right of a parent to his child's and merits only the severest criticism, it cannot
custody, ultimately the primary consideration is be construed as abandonment. His appeal of the
what is best for the happiness and welfare of the unfavorable decision against him and his efforts
latter. As maternal grandparents who have to keep his only child in his custody may be
amply demonstrated their love and affection for regarded as serious efforts to rectify his past
the boy since his infancy, they claim to be in the misdeeds. To award him custody would help
best position to promote the child's welfare. enhance the bond between parent and son. It
ISSUE would also give the father a chance to prove his
To whome shall the custody of the child be love for his son and for the son to experience
awarded the warmth and support which a father can give.
His being a soldier is likewise no bar to allowing
To the father.
The law vests on the father and mother joint him custody over the boy. So many men in
parental authority over the persons of their uniform who are assigned to different parts of
common children. 16 In case of absence or the country in the service of the nation, are still
death of either parent, the parent present shall the natural guardians of their children. It is not
continue exercising parental authority. 17 Only in just to deprive our soldiers of authority, care and
case of the parents' death, absence or custody over their children merely because of
unsuitability may substitute parental authority be the normal consequences of their duties and
exercised by the surviving grandparent. 18 The assignments, such as temporary separation
situation obtaining in the case at bench is one from their families.
where the mother of the minor Santos, Jr., is Petitioner's employment of trickery in spiriting
working in the United States while the father, away his boy from his in-laws, though
petitioner Santos, Sr., is present. Not only are unjustifiable, is likewise not a ground to wrest
they physically apart but are also emotionally custody from him.
separated. There has been no decree of legal Private respondents' attachment to the young
separation and petitioner's attempt to obtain an boy whom they have reared for the past three
annulment of the marriage on the ground of years is understandable. Still and all, the law
psychological incapacity of his wife has failed. 19 considers the natural love of a parent to
outweigh that of the grandparents, such that
We find the aforementioned considerations only when the parent present is shown to be
insufficient to defeat petitioner's parental unfit or unsuitable may the grandparents
authority and the concomitant right to have exercise substitute parental authority, a fact
custody over the minor Leouel Santos, Jr., which has not been proven here.
particularly since he has not been shown to be The strong bonds of love and affection
possessed by private respondents as
grandparents should not be seen as trades but an academic institution of learning. It
incompatible with petitioner' right to custody over also held that the students were not in the
the child as a father. Moreover, who is to say custody of the school at the time of the incident
whether the petitioner's financial standing may as the semester had already ended, that there
improve in the future? was no clear identification of the fatal gun and
WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED that in any event the defendant, had exercised
the necessary diligence in preventing the
Amadora vs CA injury. 5
The basic undisputed facts are that Alfredo
Amadora went to the San Jose-Recoletos on
What is the liability of SSC, if any?
April 13, 1972, and while in its auditorium was
shot to death by Pablito Daffon, a classmate. On
Resolution of the case will depend on the
the implications and consequences of these
interpretation of Article 2180 which, as it
facts, the parties sharply disagree.
happens, is invoked by both parties in support of
The petitioners contend that their son was in the
their conflicting positions. The pertinent part of
school to show his physics experiment as a
this article reads as follows:
prerequisite to his graduation; hence, he was
Lastly, teachers or heads of
then under the custody of the private
establishments of arts and
respondents. The private respondents submit
trades shall be liable for
that Alfredo Amadora had gone to the school
damages caused by their pupils
only for the purpose of submitting his physics
and students or apprentices so
report and that he was no longer in their custody
long as they remain in their
because the semester had already ended.
Daffon was convicted of homicide thru reckless
Three cases have so far been decided by the
imprudence . 2 Additionally, the herein
Court in connection with the above-quoted
petitioners, as the victim's parents, filed a civil
provision, to wit: Exconde v. Capuno 7 Mercado
action for damages under Article 2180 of the
v. Court of Appeals, 8 and Palisoc v.
Civil Code against the Colegio de San Jose-
Brillantes. 9 These will be briefly reviewed in this
Recoletos, its rector the high school principal,
opinion for a better resolution of the case at bar.
the dean of boys, and the physics teacher,
In the Exconde Case, Dante Capuno, a student
together with Daffon and two other students,
of the Balintawak Elementary School and a Boy
through their respective parents. The complaint
Scout, attended a Rizal Day parade on
against the students was later dropped. After
instructions of the city school supervisor. After
trial, the Court of First Instance of Cebu held the
the parade, the boy boarded a jeep, took over its
remaining defendants liable to the plaintiffs in
wheel and drove it so recklessly that it turned
the sum of P294,984.00, representing death
turtle, resulting in the death of two of its
compensation, loss of earning capacity, costs of
passengers. Dante was found guilty of double
litigation, funeral expenses, moral damages,
homicide with reckless imprudence. In the
exemplary damages, and attorney's fees .3 On
separate civil action flied against them, his father
appeal to the respondent court, however, the
was held solidarily liable with him in damages
decision was reversed and all the defendants
under Article 1903 (now Article 2180) of the Civil
were completely absolved
Code for the tort committed by the 15-year old
In its decision, which is now the subject of this
This decision, which was penned by Justice
petition for certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules
Bautista Angelo on June 29,1957, exculpated
of Court, the respondent court found that Article
the school in an obiter dictum (as it was not a
2180 was not applicable as the Colegio de San
party to the case) on the ground that it was riot a
Jose-Recoletos was not a school of arts and
school of arts and trades. Justice J.B.L. Reyes,
with whom Justices Sabino Padilla and Alex commits the tortious act must
Reyes concurred, dissented, arguing that it was live and board in the school, as
the school authorities who should be held liable erroneously held by the lower
Liability under this rule, he said, was imposed on court, and the dicta in Mercado
(1) teachers in general; and (2) heads of schools (as well as in Exconde) on
of arts and trades in particular. The modifying which it relied, must now be
clause "of establishments of arts and trades" deemed to have been set aside
should apply only to "heads" and not "teachers." by the present decision.
Exconde was reiterated in the Mercado Case, This decision was concurred in by five other
and with an elaboration. A student cut a members, 10 including Justice J.B.L. Reyes, who
classmate with a razor blade during recess time stressed, in answer to the dissenting opinion,
at the Lourdes Catholic School in Quezon City, that even students already of age were covered
and the parents of the victim sued the culprits by the provision since they were equally in the
parents for damages. Through Justice Labrador, custody of the school and subject to its
the Court declared in another obiter (as the discipline. Dissenting with three others,11 Justice
school itself had also not been sued that the Makalintal was for retaining the custody
school was not liable because it was not an interpretation in Mercado and submitted that the
establishment of arts and trades. Moreover, the rule should apply only to torts committed by
custody requirement had not been proved as students not yet of age as the school would be
this "contemplates a situation where the student acting only in loco parentis.
lives and boards with the teacher, such that the In a footnote, Justice Teehankee said he agreed
control, direction and influences on the pupil with Justice Reyes' dissent in the Exconde Case
supersede those of the parents." Justice J.B.L. but added that "since the school involved at bar
Reyes did not take part but the other members is a non-academic school, the question as to the
of the court concurred in this decision applicability of the cited codal provision to
promulgated on May 30, 1960. academic institutions will have to await another
In Palisoc vs. Brillantes, decided on October 4, case wherein it may properly be raised."
1971, a 16-year old student was killed by a This is the case.
classmate with fist blows in the laboratory of the Unlike in Exconde and Mercado, the Colegio de
Manila Technical Institute. Although the San Jose-Recoletos has been directly
wrongdoer — who was already of age — was impleaded and is sought to be held liable under
not boarding in the school, the head thereof and Article 2180; and unlike in Palisoc, it is not a
the teacher in charge were held solidarily liable school of arts and trades but an academic
with him. The Court declared through Justice institution of learning. The parties herein have
Teehankee: also directly raised the question of whether or
The phrase used in the cited not Article 2180 covers even establishments
article — "so long as (the which are technically not schools of arts and
students) remain in their trades, and, if so, when the offending student is
custody" — means the supposed to be "in its custody."
protective and supervisory
custody that the school and its
heads and teachers exercise Academic, teacher vs non academic, head of
over the pupils and students for the school
as long as they are at After an exhaustive examination of the problem,
attendance in the school, the Court has come to the conclusion that the
including recess time. There is provision in question should apply to all schools,
nothing in the law that requires academic as well as non-academic. Where the
that for such liability to attach, school is academic rather than technical or
the pupil or student who vocational in nature, responsibility for the tort
committed by the student will attach to the artisans apprenticed to their master who
teacher in charge of such student, following the personally and directly instructed them on the
first part of the provision. This is the general technique and secrets of their craft. The head of
rule. In the case of establishments of arts and the school of arts and trades was such a master
trades, it is the head thereof, and only he, who and so was personally involved in the task of
shall be held liable as an exception to the teaching his students, who usually even boarded
general rule. In other words, teachers in general with him and so came under his constant
shall be liable for the acts of their students control, supervision and influence. By contrast,
except where the school is technical in nature, in the head of the academic school was not as
which case it is the head thereof who shall be involved with his students and exercised only
answerable. Following the canon of reddendo administrative duties over the teachers who
singula singulis"teachers" should apply to the were the persons directly dealing with the
words "pupils and students" and "heads of students. The head of the academic school had
establishments of arts and trades" to the word then (as now) only a vicarious relationship with
"apprentices." the students. Consequently, while he could not
be directly faulted for the acts of the students,
The Court cannot see why different degrees of the head of the school of arts and trades,
vigilance should be exercised by the school because of his closer ties with them, could be so
authorities on the basis only of the nature of blamed.
their respective schools. There does not seem to It is conceded that the distinction no longer
be any plausible reason for relaxing that obtains at present in view of the expansion of
vigilance simply because the school is academic the schools of arts and trades, the consequent
in nature and for increasing such vigilance increase in their enrollment, and the
where the school is non-academic. Notably, the corresponding diminution of the direct and
injury subject of liability is caused by the student personal contract of their heads with the
and not by the school itself nor is it a result of students. Article 2180, however, remains
the operations of the school or its equipment. unchanged. In its present state, the provision
The injury contemplated may be caused by any must be interpreted by the Court according to its
student regardless of the school where he is clear and original mandate until the legislature,
registered. The teacher certainly should not be taking into account the charges in the situation
able to excuse himself by simply showing that subject to be regulated, sees fit to enact the
he is teaching in an academic school where, on necessary amendment.
the other hand, the head would be held liable if
the school were non-academic. When considerd under custody
These questions, though, may be asked: If the
teacher of the academic school is to be held As long as it can be shown that the student is in
answerable for the torts committed by his the school premises in pursuance of a legitimate
students, why is it the head of the school only student objective, in the exercise of a legitimate
who is held liable where the injury is caused in a student right, and even in the enjoyment of a
school of arts and trades? And in the case of the legitimate student right, and even in the
academic or non- technical school, why not enjoyment of a legitimate student privilege, the
apply the rule also to the head thereof instead of responsibility of the school authorities over the
imposing the liability only on the teacher? student continues. Indeed, even if the student
The reason for the disparity can be traced to the should be doing nothing more than relaxing in
fact that historically the head of the school of the campus in the company of his classmates
arts and trades exercised a closer tutelage over and friends and enjoying the ambience and
his pupils than the head of the academic school. atmosphere of the school, he is still within the
The old schools of arts and trades were custody and subject to the discipline of the
engaged in the training of
school authorities under the provisions of Article acting in loco parentis for the law does not
2180. require that the offending student be of minority
During all these occasions, it is obviously the age. Unlike the parent, who wig be liable only if
teacher-in-charge who must answer for his his child is still a minor, the teacher is held
students' torts, in practically the same way that answerable by the law for the act of the student
the parents are responsible for the child when under him regardless of the student's age. Thus,
he is in their custody. The teacher-in-charge is in the Palisoc Case, liability attached to the
the one designated by the dean, principal, or teacher and the head of the technical school
other administrative superior to exercise although the wrongdoer was already of age. In
supervision over the pupils in the specific this sense, Article 2180 treats the parent more
classes or sections to which they are assigned. favorably than the teacher.
It is not necessary that at the time of the injury,
the teacher be physically present and in a Application
position to prevent it. Custody does not connote Applying the foregoing considerations, the Court
immediate and actual physical control but refers has arrived at the following conclusions:
more to the influence exerted on the child and 1. At the time Alfredo Amadora was fatally shot,
the discipline instilled in him as a result of such he was still in the custody of the authorities of
influence. Thus, for the injuries caused by the Colegio de San Jose-Recoletos notwithstanding
student, the teacher and not the parent shag be that the fourth year classes had formally ended.
held responsible if the tort was committed within It was immaterial if he was in the school
the premises of the school at any time when its auditorium to finish his physics experiment or
authority could be validly exercised over him. merely to submit his physics report for what is
In any event, it should be noted that the liability important is that he was there for a legitimate
imposed by this article is supposed to fall purpose. As previously observed, even the mere
directly on the teacher or the head of the school savoring of the company of his friends in the
of arts and trades and not on the school itself. If premises of the school is a legitimate purpose
at all, the school, whatever its nature, may be that would have also brought him in the custody
held to answer for the acts of its teachers or of the school authorities.
even of the head thereof under the general 2. The rector, the high school principal and the
principle of respondeat superior, but then it may dean of boys cannot be held liable because
exculpate itself from liability by proof that it had none of them was the teacher-in-charge as
exercised the diligence of a bonus paterfamilias. previously defined. Each of them was exercising
Such defense is, of course, also available to the only a general authority over the student body
teacher or the head of the school of arts and and not the direct control and influence exerted
trades directly held to answer for the tort by the teacher placed in charge of particular
committed by the student. As long as the classes or sections and thus immediately
defendant can show that he had taken the involved in its discipline. The evidence of the
necessary precautions to prevent the injury parties does not disclose who the teacher-in-
complained of, he can exonerate himself from charge of the offending student was. The mere
the liability imposed by Article 2180, which also fact that Alfredo Amadora had gone to school
states that: that day in connection with his physics report did
The responsibility treated of in not necessarily make the physics teacher,
this article shall cease when the respondent Celestino Dicon, the teacher-in-
Persons herein mentioned charge of Alfredo's killer.
prove that they observed all the 3. At any rate, assuming that he was the
diligence of a good father of a teacher-in-charge, there is no showing that
family to prevent damages. Dicon was negligent in enforcing discipline upon
In this connection, it should be observed that the Daffon or that he had waived observance of the
teacher will be held liable not only when he is rules and regulations of the school or condoned
their non-observance. His absence when the tragic circumstances here related, we
tragedy happened cannot be considered against nevertheless are unable to extend them the
him because he was not supposed or required material relief they seek, as a balm to their grief,
to report to school on that day. And while it is under the law they have invoked.
true that the offending student was still in the WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED, without
custody of the teacher-in-charge even if the any pronouncement as to costs. It is so ordered.
latter was physically absent when the tort was Perez vs. CA, GR No. 118870, March 29, 1996
committed, it has not been established that it Facts: Respondent father, a doctor of medicine
was caused by his laxness in enforcing and petitioner mother, a registered nurse
discipline upon the student. On the contrary, the working in the US are married couples who are
private respondents have proved that they had separated in fact with only one child.
exercised due diligence, through the Petitioner filed a petition for habeas corpus
enforcement of the school regulations, in asking respondent to surrender the custody of
maintaining that discipline. their son. The RTC issued an Order awarding
4. In the absence of a teacher-in-charge, it is custody of the one-year old child to his mother,
probably the dean of boys who should be held citing the second paragraph of Article 213 of the
liable especially in view of the unrefuted Family Code.
evidence that he had earlier confiscated an Upon appeal by the father, the Court of Appeals
unlicensed gun from one of the students and reversed the trial court’s order and awarded
returned the same later to him without taking custody of the boy to him ruling that there were
disciplinary action or reporting the matter to enough reasons to deny petitioner custody over
higher authorities. While this was clearly the child even under seven years old. It held that
negligence on his part, for which he deserves granting custody to the boy’s father would be for
sanctions from the school, it does not the child’s best interest and welfare.
necessarily link him to the shooting of Amador Article 213, par 2, provides in case of separation
as it has not been shown that he confiscated of parents that no child under 7 years of age
and returned pistol was the gun that killed the shall be separated from the mother, unless the
petitioners' son. court finds compelling reasons to order
5. Finally, as previously observed, the Colegio otherwise.
de San Jose-Recoletos cannot be held directly Rule 99, Section 6 of the Revised Rules of Court
liable under the article because only the teacher also states that “No child under seven years of
or the head of the school of arts and trades is age shall be separated from the mother, unless
made responsible for the damage caused by the the court finds there are compelling reasons
student or apprentice. Neither can it be held to therefore.
answer for the tort committed by any of the other Issue: WON custody of the child is to be given
private respondents for none of them has been to the father.
found to have been charged with the custody of Held: No. The provisions of the law clearly
the offending student or has been remiss in the mandate that a child under seven years of age
discharge of his duties in connection with such shall not be separated from his mother unless
custody. the court finds compelling reasons to order
In sum, the Court finds under the facts as otherwise. The use of the word “shall” in Article
disclosed by the record and in the light of the 213 of the Family Code and Rule 99, Sec 6 of
principles herein announced that none of the the Revised Rules of Court connotes a
respondents is liable for the injury inflicted by mandatory character.
Pablito Damon on Alfredo Amadora that resulted Couples who are separated in fact are covered
in the latter's death at the auditorium of the within the term separation.
Colegio de San Jose-Recoletos on April 13, The Family Code in reverting to the provision of
1972. While we deeply sympathize with the the Civil Code that a child below seven years old
petitioners over the loss of their son under the shall not be separated from the mother (Article
363), has expressly repealed the earlier Article HELD:Parental liability is a natural or logical
17, par 3 of the Child and youth Welfare Code consequence of duties and responsibilities of
which reduced the child’s age to 5 years. parents, their parental authority which includes
instructing, controlling and disciplining the child.
PINEDA vs CAG.R. No. 105562 September 27, In the case at bar, during the shooting incident,
1993 parental authority over Adelberto was still lodged
Facts: The sailors perished while the ship sank with the natural parents. It follows that they are
in Morocco. The families of the victims then the indispensable parties to the suit for
wanted to claim the benefits of the insurance. damages. “Parents and guardians are
The checks were given to PMSI. Nuval, the responsible for the damage caused by the child
PMSI president, pocketed the amounts in his under their parental authority in accordance with
bank account. When the families went to insular the civil code”.
to get the benefits, their request was denied
because Insular claimed that the checks were SC did not consider that retroactive effect may
already given to PMSI. Hence, The families filed be given to the decree of adoption so as to
a petition with the Insurance Commission. They impose a liability upon the adopting parents
won and Insular was ordered to pay them 500 a accruing at the time when they had no actual or
day until the amount was furnished to them. physical custody over the adopted child.
Issue:Whether or not the families of the victim Retroactivity may be essential if it permits
have the right to claim benefits of the insurance accrual of some benefit or advantage in favor of
of the deceased the adopted child. Under Article 35 of the Child
Held:Yes. Under Article 225 The father and the and Youth Welfare Code, parental authority is
mother shall jointly exercise legal guardianship provisionally vested in the adopting parents
over the property of their unemancipated during the period of trial custody however in this
common child without the necessity of a court case, trial custody period either had not yet
appointment. In case of disagreement, the begin nor had been completed at the time of the
father’s decision shall prevail, unless there is shooting incident. Hence, actual custody was
judicial order to the contrary. Hence, the families then with the natural parents of Adelberto.
left has the right to receive just compensation
from the insurance company. Petition for review was hereby granted.
Tamargo vs CAGR No. 85044, June 3, 1992
FACTS:In October 1982, AdelbertoBundoc, Eugenio vs Velez, G.R. No. 85140, May 17,
minor, 10 years of age, shot Jennifer Tamargo 1990
with an air rifle causing injuries that resulted in Facts:Vitaliana Vargas’ brothers and sisters
her death. The petitioners, natural parents of unaware of the former’s death on August 28,
Tamargo, filed a complaint for damages against 1988 filed a petition for Habeas Corpus on
the natural parents of Adelberto with whom he September 27, 1988 before the RTC of Misamis
was living the time of the tragic incident. Oriental alleging that she was forcible taken
from her residence sometime in 1987 and was
In December 1981, the spouses Rapisura filed a confined by the herein petitioner, Tomas
petition to adopt AdelbertoBundoc. Such Eugenio in his palacial residence in Jasaan,
petition was granted on November 1982 after Misamis Oriental.
the tragic incident. The respondent court in an order dated 28
ISSUE: WON parental authority concerned may September 1988 issued the writ of habeas
be given retroactive effect so as to make corpus, but the writ was returned unsatisfied.
adopting parents the indispensable parties in a Petitioner refused to surrender the body of
damage case filed against the adopted child Vitaliana (who had died on 28 August 1988) to
where actual custody was lodged with the the respondent sheriff, reasoning that a corpse
biological parents. cannot be the subject of habeas corpus
proceedings; besides, according to petitioner, he Constancia married Arturo Tolentino on April 21,
had already obtained a burial permit. Petitioner 1945 and they had 3 children. Constancia
claims that as her common law husband, he has Tolentino is the present legal wife of Arturo
legal custody of her body. Tolentino.
Issue:Whether or not the petitioner can claim Consuelo David continued using the surname
custody of the deceased. Tolentino after the divorce and up to the time
Held: The custody of the dead body of Vitaliana that the complaint was filed. Her usage of the
was correctly awarded to the surviving brothers surname Tolentino was authorized by the family
and sisters. Section 1103 of the Revised of Arturo Tolentino (brothers and sisters).
Administrative Code which provides: In RTC, Consuelo David should discontinue her
“Persons charged with duty of burial - if the usage of the surname of Tolentino. The CA
deceased was an unmarried man or woman or a decision reversed that of the RTC’s.
child and left any kin; the duty of the burial shall
devolve upon the nearest kin of the deceased. ISSUES:
Philippine Law does not recognize common law 1. WON the petitioner’s cause of action has
marriages. A man and woman not legally already prescribed
married who cohabit for many years as husband 2. WON the petitioner can exclude by injunction
and wife, who represent themselves to the Consuelo David from using the surname of her
public as husband and wife, and who are former husband from whom she was divorced.
reputed to be husband and wife in the
community where they live may be considered HELD:
legally married in common law jurisdictions but 1. Yes
not in the Philippines. In Art 1150 CC The time for prescription of all
While it is true that our laws do not just brush kinds of actions, when there in no special
aside the fact that such relationships are present provision which ordains otherwise, shall be
in our society, and that they produce a counted from the day they may be brought.
community of properties and interests which is Art 1149 CC Period of prescription is 5 years
governed by law, authority exists in case law to from the right of action accrues.
the effect that such form of co-ownership The action has long prescribed because she
requires that the man and woman living together married Arturo Tolentino on April 21, 1945; Civil
must not in any way be incapacitated to contract Code took effect on August 30, 1950; She
marriage. In any case, herein petitioner has a acquired knowledge that Consuelo David was
subsisting marriage with another woman, alegal still using the surname Tolentino in 1951.
impediment which disqualified him from even She should have filed the case after she
legally marrying Vitaliana.(Eugenio vs Velez, obtained knowledge that Consuelo David was
G.R. No. 85140, May 17, 1990). still using the surname Tolentino. The case was
filed on November 23, 1971 or 20 years after
Tolentino v CA (1988) she obtained knowledge.
2. No
FACTS: Philippine law is silent whether or not a divorced
Private respondent Consuelo David married woman may continue to use the surname of her
Arturo Tolentino in 1931. The marriage was husband because there are no provisions for
dissolved and terminated in 1943 pursuant to divorce under Philippine law.
the law during the Japanese occupation by a On the Commentary of Tolentino as regards Art
decree of absolute divorce on the grounds of 370 of the CC. The wife cannot claim an
desertion and abandonment by the wife for at exclusive right to use the husband’s surname.
least 3 continuous years. She cannot be prevented from using it, but
Arturo Tolentino then married Pilar Adorable but neither can she restrain others from using it.
she died soon after the marriage. After that,
Art 371 is not applicable because it Eleazar Calasan (married), signed the birth
contemplates annulment while the present case certificate of the child as the informant,
refers to absolute divorce where there is indicating therein the child’s name as Jonathan
severance of valid marriage ties. Effect of MossesgeldCalasan. Both Eleazar and Marissa
divorce was more akin to death of the spouse accomplished the dorsal side of the certificate of
where the deceased woman is continued to be live birth stating that the information contained
referred to as “Mrs. of the husband” even if he therein were true and correct. In addition,
has remarried. Eleazar executed an affidavit admitting paternity
If the appeal would be granted the respondent of the child.
would encounter problems because she was The person in charge at the hospital refused to
able to prove that she entered into contracts with place Calasan as the child’s surname in the
third persons, acquired properties and entered certificate of live birth; hence, Eleazar himself
into other legal relations using the surname submitted the certificate to the office of the local
Tolentino. Petitioner failed to show the she civil registrar of Mandaluyong, for registration.
would suffer any legal injury or deprivation of The local civil registrar denied the registration on
right. the basis of Circular No. 4, dated October 11,
There was no usurpation of the petitioner’s 1988, of the Civil Registrar General, providing
name and surname. Usurpation implies injury to that under Article 176 of the Family Code of the
the interests of the owner of the name. It Philippines, illegitimate children born on or after
consists with the possibility of confusion of August 3, 1988, shall use the surname of their
identity. The elements of usurpation were 1. mother.
Actual use of another’s name, 2. Use is Eleazar filed with the Regional Trial Court of
unauthorized, 3. Use of another’s name is to Pasig a petition for mandamus to compel the
designate personality or identity of a person. Local Civil Registrar of Mandaluyong to register
None of these elements were present in the the certificate of live birth of his alleged
case because public knowledge referred to illegitimate son using his surname. The RTC
Constancia as the legal wife of Arturo, and denied the petition. Eleazar filed a motion for
Consuelo did represent herself after the divorce reconsideration. Later, he filed a motion for
as Mrs. Arturo Tolentino. leave to amend petition and to admit amended
Silva v Peralta was cited by the petitioner but the petition, substituting the child’s mother Marissa
case is not applicable. In Silva, it was not mere A. Mossesgeld as the petitioner. The MR was
use of the surname that was enjoined but the denied. The CA affirmed the decision.
defendant’s representation that she was the wife
of Saturnino Silva, there was usurpation of the Issue: Does mandamus lie to compel the Local
status of the wife. Civil Registrar to register a certificate of live birth
of an illegitimate child using the alleged father’s
Mossesgeld vs. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. surname where the latter admitted paternity?
111455. December 23, 1998
Case Doctrines: Held:
No. Article 176 of the Family Code of the
● Illegitimate children shall use the surname of Philippines provides that “illegitimate children
the mother , and this is rule regardless of shall use the surname and shall be under the
whether or not the father admits paternity. parental authority of their mother, and shall be
entitled to support in conformity with this Code.”
● Mandamus does not lie to compel the This is the rule regardless of whether or not the
performance of an act prohibited by law father admits paternity. Consequently, the Local
Civil Registrar correctly refused to register the
Facts: In 1989, Marissa Mossesgeld (single), certificate of live birth of petitioner’s illegitimate
gave birth to a baby boy. The father, one child using the surname of the alleged father,
even with the latter’s consent. Of course, the entries in the civil registry pursuant to Rule 108
putative father, though a much married man, of the Revised Rules of Court and that they have
may legally adopt his own illegitimate child. In caused reasonable notice to be given to the
case of adoption, the child shall be considered a persons named in the petition and have also
legitimate child of the adopter, entitled to use his caused the order for the hearings of their petition
surname. to be published for three (3) consecutive weeks
Mandamus will not lie to compel the local civil in a newspaper of general circulation in the
registrar to register the certificate of live birth of province.
an illegitimate child using the father’s surname,
even with the consent of the latter. Mandamus Subsequently, the Local Civil Registrar of Cebu
does not lie to compel the performance of an act City filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that
prohibited by law. since the petition seeks to change the nationality
or citizenship of Bernardo Go and Jessica Go
Republic v. Valencia G.R. No. L-32181,5 from “Chinese” to “Filipino” and their status from
March 1986 “Legitimate” to Illegitimate”, and changing also
the status of the mother from “married” to
FACTS: “single” the corrections sought are not merely
clerical but substantial, involving as they do the
Court of First Instance of Cebu a petition for the citizenship and status of the petitioning minors
cancellation and/or correction of entries of birth and the status of their mother.
of Bernardo Go and Jessica Go in the Civil
Registry of the City of Cebu. The case was ISSUE:
docketed as Special Proceedings No. 3043-R.
May a change in the record of birth in a civil
The Solicitor General filed an opposition to the registry, involving the nationality or citizenship of
petition alleging that the petition for correction of a person, be granted in a summary procedure?
entry in the Civil Registry, contemplates a
summary proceeding and correction of mere RULING:
clerical errors, those harmless and innocuous
changes such as the correction of a name that is The Supreme Court likewise held that
merely mispelled, occupation of parents, etc., corrections involving the nationality or
and not changes or corrections involving civil citizenship of a person were substantial and
status, nationality, or citizenship which are could not be effected except in adversarial
substantial and controversial. proceedings.

Respondent Leonor Valencia, filed her reply to It is undoubtedly true that if the subject matter of
the opposition wherein she admitted that the a petition is not for the correction of clerical
present petition seeks substantial changes errors of a harmless and innocuous nature, but
involving the civil status and nationality or one involving the nationality or citizenship, which
citizenship of respondents, but alleged that is undisputably substantial as well as
substantial changes in the civil registry records controverted, affirmative relief cannot be granted
involving the civil status of parents, their in a proceeding summary in nature. However, it
nationality or citizenship may be allowed if- (1) is also true that a right in law may be enforced
the proper suit is filed, and (2) evidence is and a wrong may be remedied as long as the
submitted, either to support the allegations of appropriate remedy is used. The SC adheres to
the petition or to disprove the same; that the principle that even substantial errors in a civil
respondents have complied with these registry may be corrected and the true facts
requirements by filing the present special established provided the parties aggrieved by
proceeding for cancellation or correction of
the error avail themselves of the appropriate
adversary proceedings.

Rule 108 of the Revise Rules of Court now

provides for such a procedure which should be
limited solely to the implementation of Article
412, the substantive law on the matter of
correcting entries in the civil register. Rule 108,
lay all the other provisions of the Rules of Court,
was promulgated by the Supreme Court
pursuant to its rule- making authority under Sec.
13 of Art. VIII of the Constitution, which directs
that such rules of court ‘shall not diminish or
increase or modify substantive rights.’ If Rule
108 were to be extended beyond innocuous or
harmless changes or corrections of errors which
are visible to the eye or obvious to the
understanding, so as to comprehend substantial
and controversial alterations concerning
citizenship, legitimacy or paternity or filiation, or
legitimacy of marriage, said Rule 108 would
thereby become unconstitutional for it would be
increasing or modifying substantive rights, which
changes are not authorized under Article 412 of
the New Civil Code.

Thus, Valencia requires that a petition for

substantial correction or change of entries in the
civil registry should have as respondents the
civil registrar, as well as all other persons who
have or claim any interest that would be affected
thereby. It further mandates that a full hearing,
not merely a summary proceeding, be