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Digest: Pamplona v. Moreto

Pamplona v. Moreto
G.R. No. L-33187, March 31, 1980


Spouses Flaviano Moreto and Monica Maniega (died intestate on May 6, 1946 in Calamba, Laguna) acquired adjacent lots Nos. 1495, 4545, and 1496 of the Calamba Friar Land Estate, situated in Calamba, Laguna.

They have six (6) children, namely, (1) Ursulo (died intestate on May 24, 1959 with heirs Vivencio, Marcelo, Rosario, Victor, Paulina, Marta and Eligio), (2) Marta (died also intestate on April 30, 1938 with heir Victoria Tuiza), (3) La Paz (died intestate on July 17, 1954 with heirs Pablo, Severina, Lazaro, and Lorenzo, all surnamed Mendoza), (4) Alipio (died intestate on June 30, 1943 with heir Josefina Moreto), (5) Pablo (died intestate on April 25, 1942 leaving no issue and as his heirs his brother plaintiff Leandro), and (6) Leandro.

On July 30, 1952, Flaviano, without the consent of the heirs, and before any liquidation of the conjugal partnership, executed in favor of Geminiano Pamplona, married to defendant Apolonia Onte, the deed of absolute sale (Exh. "1") covering lot No. 1495 for P900.00.

Spouses Pamplona constructed their house on the eastern part of lot 1496 as Flaviano, at the time of the sale, pointed to. Their son (Rafael) also built his house within lot 1496 about one meter from its boundary with the adjoining lot. Both without knowledge that the subject matter of their sale transaction was No. 1495 and not the alleged lot No. 1496.

From 1956 to 1960, the spouses Pamplona enlarged their house and constructed a piggery corral at Lot 1496. On 1956, Flaviano died intestate. In 1961, the plaintiffs demanded on the defendants to vacate the lot on the ground that Flaviano Moreto had no right to sell the lot as the same belongs to the conjugal partnership of Flaviano and his deceased wife and the latter was already dead when the sale was executed without the consent of the plaintiffs who are the heirs of Monica. The spouses Geminiano Pamplona and Apolonia Onte refused.

The defendants claim that the sale made by Flaviano Moreto in their favor is valid as the lot sold is registered in the name of Flaviano Moreto and they are purchasers believing in good faith that the vendor was the sole owner of the lot sold.

After a relocation of lots 1495, 1496 and 4545 made by agreement of the parties, it was found out that there was mutual error between Flaviano Moreto and the defendants in the execution of the deed of sale because while the said deed recited that the lot sold is lot No. 1495, the real intention of the parties is that it was a portion consisting of 781 square meters of lot No. 1496 which was the subject matter of their sale transaction.

Lower Court: Transfer Certificate of Title No. (Lot No. 1495) and registered in the name of spouses Pamplona is cancelled.

Deed of absolute sale of the eastern portion of Lot 1496 (781 sq m) is null and void, with the plaintiff hereby declared as the rightful owners and entitled to its possession.

The remaining portion of Lot 1496 (390.5 sq m) defendants are declared lawful owners and entitled to its possession and shall be entitled to a certificate of title covering said portion and Transfer Certificate of Title No. 9843

The RTC decision was affirmed by the CA; hence, this petition was instituted appealing the decision of the CA.


Whether or not the petitioners are entitled to the full ownership of the property in litigation, or only ½ of the same?


Yes, they are entitled to the full ownership of the property in litigation. The Court ruled that at the time of the sale in 1952, the conjugal partnership was already dissolved six years before and therefore, the estate became a co-ownership between Flaviano, and the heirs of his deceased wife. 

Art. 493. Each co-owner shall have the full ownership of his part and of the fruits and benefits pertaining thereto, and he may therefore alienate, assign or mortgage it, and even substitute another person in its enjoyment, except when personal rights are involve. But the effect of the alienation or the mortgage, with respect to the co-owners, shall be limited to the portion which may be allotted to him in the division upon the termination of the co-ownership. 

There was partial partition, the co-owner (Flaviano) as vendor pointed out its location and even indicated the boundaries over which the fences were to be erected without objection. Despite the fact that at the time of sale, there was no partition of the subject property between the co-owners and Flaviano, as vendor, had ownership of an undetermined portion of the hereditary estate which he had a perfect and legal right to dispose of to the Spouse Pamplona. And during the period, both parties lived as neighbors, yet the heirs lifted no finger to question the occupation, possession and ownership of the land purchased by the Pamplonas. The private respondents are in estoppel by laches to claim half of the property, in dispute as null and void. 

According to Art. 776, the inheritance which private respondents may receive from their deceased parents includes all the property, rights and obligations of a person which are not extinguished by their parent’s death. In addition, under Art. 1311 of the NCC, the contract of sale executed by Flaviano took effect between the parties, their assigns and heirs which includes the private respondents; therefore, they must comply with said obligation. The petition is affirmed with modification with respect to the fact that the sale executed in favor of Spouses Pamplona is legal and valid in its entirety

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