You are on page 1of 8

Jurisdiction Limited to Adjudication and settlement of

Properties of Deceased
Uy vs Dizon-Capulong
Recit Recall:
There was an issue in the probate proceeding wherein an issue of title
was raised. The Judge ruled on it. Spouses Uy said, Sut! Hoy! Bawal
yan! CA ruled in favor of the Spouses Uy. However, Judge disregarded
the ruling of the CA. So now, she has been discharged as Judge and her
benefits are forfeited.
Doctrine:
Probate court has no authority to decide questions of ownership of
property, real or personal. The only purpose of the examination is to
elicit information or to secure evidence from persons suspected of
having knowledge of the property of the deceased.
FACTS:
Judge Teresita Dizon-Capulong is an RTC Judge being charged
with gross icompetence, gross ignorance of the law and grave
misconduct.
There was a case for the settlement of the estate of the late
Abrocio Pingco.
o Judge Dizon-Capulong presided over the estate
proceedings.
o Herminia Alvos was appointed as special administratrix.
o Alvos filed an urgent motion claiming that land belonging
to the decedent was sold to the Spouses Uy, and that the
sale was procured through fraud and forgery.
o Respondent Judge ordered the cancellation of the title of
Spouses Uy over the property.
Spouses Uy filed a petition in the CA to annul the orders of Judge
Dizon-Capulong in cancelling their titles.
o CA ruled in favor Spouses Uy.
The special administratrix was unconvinced of the CA ruling,
claiming that it is well within the powers of respondent Judge to
rule on the cancellation of titles.
ISSUE: Whether Judge Dizon-Capulong, presiding on a probate court,
may rule on the ownership or title in a property involved in the probate
proceedings?
RULING: HELL NO!!!

Every judge should be cognizant of the basic principle that when


questions arise as to ownership of property alleged to be part of the
estate of a deceased person, but claimed by some other person to be
his property, not by virtue of any right of inheritance from the
deceased but by title adverse to that of the deceased and his estate,
such questions cannot be determined in the court of administration
proceedings. The trial court, acting as probate court, has no jurisdiction
to adjudicate such contentions, which must be submitted to the trial
court in the exercise of its general jurisdiction. The failure of
respondent judge to apply this basic principle indicated a manifest
disregard of well-known rules. Furthermore, Torrens title cannot be
collaterally attacked because the issue on the validity of the title can
only be raised in an action instituted expressly for the purpose.
Substantial compliance with formal requirements
Akvarado vs Gaviola, Jr.
Recit Recall:
Brigido Alvarado instituted a will. The son he disinherited opposed the
probate of the will, because it was not read twice to the deceased and
that he was still able to read when he initiated the same, so he
shouldve read it himself instead of having it be read for him. Court
ruled for Brigido.
Doctrine:
Substantial compliance is acceptable where the purpose of the law has
been satisfied. Formal imperfections should be brushed aside when
they do not affect its purpose and which, when taken into account,
may only defeat the testators will.
FACTS:
Brigido Alvarado instated a notarial will (Huling habilin),
wherein he disinherited his illegitimate son, Cesar.
o The will was testified to by 3 instrumental witnesses, the
notary public.
o Testator did not read the final draft, it was instead read out
loud by respondent, his lawyer who drafted the same. It
was read in the presence of the testator and the
instrumental witnesses.
o Testator has glaucoma, so his eyesight was failing him.
A petition for probate of the will was filed upon the death of
Brigido.

o It was opposed by petitioner on the ground that it was not


executed and attested as required by law.
o The main thrust of oppositors appeal was that the
deceased was blind within the meaning of the law at the
time his Huling Habilin were executed; since the reading
required by Art. 808 of the Civil Code was not complied
with, it should have been denied.
ISSUE: Whether the will failed to substantially comply with the
requirements of law?
RULING: NO!
There is no dispute that Brigido Alvarado was not totally blind, as he
could still see within a 3 feet distance. The Court looked to favor
oppositors contention that indeed Alvarado was still able to see, albeit
just a short distance.
However, the court has ruled in an umber of occasions that substantial
compliance is acceptable where the purpose of the law has been
satisfied, the reason being that the solemnities surrounding the
execution of wills are intended to protect the testator from all kinds of
fraud and trickery but are never intended to be so rigid and inflexible
as to destroy the testamentary privilege.
In the case at bar, respondent read the testators will aloud in the
presence of the testator, his 3 witnesses, and the notary public. Prior
thereto the testator affirmed, upon being asked, that the contents read
corresponded with his instructions.
The spirit of the law was served although the letter of the law was not.
Although there should be strict compliance with the substantial
requirements of the law I order to insure the authenticity of the will,
the formal imperfections should be brushed aside when they do not
affect its purpose and which, when taken into account, may only defeat
the testators will.
Role and function of Special Administrator
Corona vs Court of Appeals
Recit Recall:
Vitug died and appointed Corona as executor. Corona cannot comply
with that duty so she appointed Alonte as special administrator. It was
opposed by the disinherited husband, because Alonte had no interest
in the estate. Court said, she may be a co-special administrator.

Doctrine:
Special administrators are officers of the court subject to supervision
and control of the probate court and are expected to work for the best
interests of the entire estate, its smooth administration, and its earliest
settlement.
FACTS:
Vitug died in NYC, leaving 2 wills (Holographic and Formal)
wherein, among the notable provisions, the husband was
disinherited for his immoral conduct which amounted to
concubinage, a ground for legal separation, and that Rowena
Corona was appointed as executrix.
o Corona filed a petition for the probate of the Wills and for
the appointment of Nenita Alonte as Administrator,
because Corona was working in NYC, hence, it will be
extremely difficult for her to comply with the duties.
o Nenita was allowed to be special administratrix after
posting of a P100,000 bond.
o Romarico, the unfaithful husband, opposed the allowance
of the wills as they have been procured through undue and
improper pressure and influence, and that the appointment
of Nenita as special administratrix should not be allowed,
because she has no interest to be protected and that she
was not related to the heirs.
o Probate Court set aside the order allowing Nenita to be
special administratrix and appointed Romarico in her stead
after posting a P200,000 bond.
o The probate court reasoned that the Rules of Court stated
that there is an order of preference for appointment of
administrator as he has interest in the estate, and that
disinheritance is not a ground to disqualify him.
Petitioner elevated the case to CA. Affirmed.
Now, theyre in the SC.
ISSUE: Whether the lower court was correct in resolving to appoint the
unfaithful husband as Special Administratrix?
RULING: Sadly, YES!
The court is of considered opinion that petitioners nominee, Nenita
Alonte, should be appointed as co-Special Administrator. The
executors choice of Special administration, considering her own
inability to serve and the wide latitude of discretion given her by the
testator is entitled to the highest consideration. Objections to Nenitas
appointment on the grounds of impracticality and lack of kinship are

overshadowed by the fact that justice and equity demand that the side
of deceased wife and the faction of the surviving husband be
represented in the management of the decedents estate.
Special administrators are officers of the court subject to supervision
and control of the probate court and are expected to work for the best
interests of the entire estate, its smooth administration, and its earliest
settlement.
Provisional Support
Santero vs CFI of Cavite
Recit Recall:
There were a number of motions for allowance coming from different
heirs of the deceased. All were allowed by the probate court. However,
the executor filed an opposition to all of it, contending that the heirs
requesting for allowance have already reached the age of majority and
some are in fact married already, hence, not entitled to the support.
Doctrine:
The fact that the heirs are of age, employed and married is of no
moment and should not be regarded as the determining factor of their
to allowance. While the rules of court limit the allowance to the widow
and minor or incapacitated children, the New Civil Code, gives the
surviving spouse and the children without distinction.
FACTS:
The order of the CFI of Cavite, sitting as a probate court, for the
granting of the Motion for Allowance filed by the heirs are being
questioned.
o It would appear that Pablo Santero had children with
Anselma Diaz and Felixberta Pacursa, both of which Pablo
did not marry.
o With Felixberta, they begot 3 children: Princesita, Federico
and Willy.
o The motion for allowance contained that Victor, Rodrigo,
Anselmina and Miguel, all surnamed Santero, filed thru
their guardian Anselma Diaz, are entitled to support which
included their educational, clothing and medical expenses.
Allowed.
o Respondents further filed another Motion for Allowance to
include Juanita, Estrelita and Pedrito, all surnamed Santero,
which was also allowed.

Petitioners asked for a clarification from Anselma, on why she


added 3 more people for a motion for Allowance, when that 3
persons are already of age and are no longer entitled to the
same.
o Anselma explained that they are entitled to allowance
pursuant to Article 188 of the New Civil Code.
o Petitioners, however, argued that the prevailing rule should
be Sec. 3 Rule 83 of the Rules of Court, that states that
only the surviving spouse and the minor children are
entitled to the same. Furthermore, they claimed that the
estate of Pablo do not have sufficient funds to cover
everyone.

ISSUE: Whether the respondents are entitled to the allowance they


sought after?
RULING: YES!
The controlling provision is not Rule 83, Sec. 3 of the Rules of Court but
Articles 290 and 188 of the Civil Code.
The fact that private respondents are of age, employed or married is of
no moent and should not be regarded as the determining factor of their
right to allowance. While the Rules of Court limit allowance to widows
and minor or incapacitated children, the New Civil Code gives the
surviving spouse and the children without distinction. Civil Code being
Substantive Law and Rules of Court being procedural, Civil Code shall
prevail.
Right to compel third persons to examination and the right to
recover property
Chua vs Absolute Management Corporation
Recit Recall:
Chua was appointed as administrator. Absolute filed a claim on the
estate and alleged that some stocks were not included in the inventory
and suspected that the administrator may have simulated the
assignment of stocks and asked the court to examine the third persons
who have the stocks. Chua opposed, claiming the parties have no
application in the probate proceedings.
Doctrine:
FACTS:

Chua was appointed as administrator of the Estate of the late


Jose L. Chua.
o She filed an inventory of all the properties of the deceased.
o Absolute Management Corporation was one its creditors
and filed a claim on the estate. Chua accepted.
Later, Absolute noticed that the shares of stocks of the decedent
with Ayala Sale and Ayala Constructions are not included in the
inventory of assets.
o Chua explained that they are not included because the
stocks are already assigned and transferred to third
persons prior to the death of the decedent. She attached
the explanation and the deed of assignments.
Absolute suspected that the deeds are spurious and simulated.
So they filed a motion for examination of the third persons who
have acquired the stocks. It premised its request from Section 6,
Rule 87.
o This was opposed by Chua, claiming that the motion and
the ground for the provision bears no application in the
case.
RTC denied the motion.
CA reversed.

ISSUE: Whether the CA correctly ruled on the motion for examination?


RULING: YES!
Section 6, Rule 87 seeks to secure evidence form persons suspected of
having possession or knowledge of the properties left by a deceased
person, or of having concealed, embezzled or conveyed any of the
properties of the deceased. The court, which acquires jurisdiction over
the properties of the decedent, has supervision and control over the
properties. The trial court has the inherent duty to see to it that the
inventory of the administrator lists all the properties, right and credits
which the law requires the administrator to include in the inventory. An
heir or person interested in the properties of a deceased may call the
court's attention that certain properties, rights or credits are left out
from the inventory.
In the case at bar, some of the transferees of the shares of the stock
do not appear to be heirs of the decedent. Neither do they appear to
be parties to the intestate proceedings. Third persons to whom the
decedents assets had been conveyed may be cited to appear in court
and examined under oath as to how they came into possession of the
decedents assets. In case of fraudulent conveyances, a separate
action is necessary to recover these assets.

There is no reason why the trial court should disallow the examination
of the alleged transferees of the shares of stocks. This is only for
purposes of eliciting information or securing evidence from persons
suspected of concealing or conveying some of the decedents assets to
the prejudice of the creditors. Petitioners contention that the
transferees are the decedents assignees does not automatically
negate concealment of the decedents assets on their part. The
assignment might be simulated so as to place the shares beyond the
reach of the creditors.