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G.R. No.

78590 June 20, 1988


PEDRO DE GUZMAN, petitioner, Whether or not a probate court may appoint a special administratrix and
vs. issue a writ of possession of alleged properties of a decedent for the
THE HONORABLE JUDGE ZOSIMO Z. ANGELES, RTC BRANCH 58, preservation of the estate in a petition for the settlement of the intestate
MAKATI, METRO, MANILA; DEPUTY SHERIFFS JOSE B. FLORA and estate of the said deceased person even before the probate court causes
HONORIO SANTOS and ELAINE G. DE GUZMAN, respondents. notice to be served upon all interested parties?

FACTS: RULING: NO
On May 5, 1987, private respondent Elaine G. de Guzman filed a petition for
the settlement of the intestate estate of Manolito de Guzman, before the In the instant case, there is no doubt that the respondent court acquired
Regional Trial Court of Makati, Metro Manila. jurisdiction over the proceedings upon the filing of a petition for the
settlement of an intestate estate by the private respondent since the
On May 22, 1987, the private respondent filed a motion for writ of possession petition had alleged all the jurisdictional facts, the residence of the
over five (5) — vehicles registered under the name of Manolito de Guzman, deceased person, the possible heirs and creditors and the probable
alleged to be conjugal properties of the de Guzman's but which are at value of the estate of the deceased Manolito de Guzman pursuant to
present in the possession of the private respondent's father-in- law, herein Section 2, Rule 79 of the Revised Rules of Court.
petitioner Pedro de Guzman. The motion stated that as co-owner and heir,
the private respondent must have the possession of said vehicles in order to Section 3, Rule 79 of the Revised Rules of Court provides:
preserve the assets of her late husband. On the same day, the lower court
issued an order setting for hearing the motion on May 27, 1987 directing the Court to set time for hearing. — Notice thereof. — When a petition
deputy sheriff to notify petitioner Pedro de Guzman at the expense of the for letters of administration is filed in the court having jurisdiction,
private respondent. such court shall fix a time and place for hearing the petition, and shall
cause notice thereof to be given to the known heirs and creditors of
On May 28, 1987, the private respondent filed her "Ex-Parte Motion to the decedent, and to any other persons believed to have an interest
Appoint Petitioner as Special Administratrix of the Estate of Manolito de in the estate, in the manner provided in sections 3 and 4 of Rule 76.
Guzman” which was granted by the lower court. Also in another order, the
lower court acted on the motion for assistance which authorized Deputy It is very clear from this provision that the probate court must cause notice
Sheriffs Honorio Santos and Jose B. Flora together with some military men through publication of the petition after it receives the same. The purpose of
and/or policemen to assist private respondent in preserving the subject this notice is to bring all the interested persons within the court's jurisdiction
estate. so that the judgment therein becomes binding on all the world. (Manalo v.
Paredes, 47 Phil. 938; Moran, Comment on the Rules of Court Volume
Trouble ensued when the respondents tried to enforce the later order. The 3,1980 Edition) Where no notice as required by Section 3, Rule 79 of the
petitioner resisted when Deputy Sheriffs Jose B. Flora and Honorio Santos Rules of Court has been given to persons believed to have an interest in the
tried to take the subject vehicles on the ground that they were his personal estate of the deceased person; the proceeding for the settlement of the
properties. estate is void and should be annulled. The requirement as to notice is
essential to the validity of the proceeding in that no person may be deprived
The petitioner contends that such order is a patent nullity, the respondent of his right to property without due process of law.
court not having acquired jurisdiction to appoint a special administratrix
because the petition for the settlement of the estate of Manolito de Guzman Verily, notice through publication of the petition for the settlement of the
was not yet set for hearing and published for three consecutive weeks, as estate of a deceased person is jurisdictional, the absence of which makes
mandated by the Rules of Court. The petitioner also stresses that the court orders affecting other persons, subsequent to the petition void and
appointment of a special administratrix constitutes an abuse of discretion for subject to annulment. (See Eusebio v. Valmores, supra)
having been made without giving petitioner and other parties an opportunity
to oppose said appointment. In the instant case, no notice as mandated by section 3, Rule 79 of the
Revised Rules of Court was caused to be given by the probate court before it
ISSUE: acted on the motions of the private respondent to be appointed as special
administratrix, to issue a writ of possession of alleged properties of the
deceased person in the widow's favor, and to grant her motion for assistance
to preserve the estate of Manolito de Guzman.

The petitioner as creditor of the estate has a similar interest in the


preservation of the estate as the private respondent who happens to be the
widow of deceased Manolito de Guzman. Hence, the necessity of notice as
mandated by the Rules of Court. It is not clear from the records exactly what
emergency would have ensued if the appointment of an administrator was
deferred at least until the most interested parties were given notice of the
proposed action. No unavoidable delay in the appointment of a regular
administrator is apparent from the records.

If emergency situations threatening the dissipation of the assets of an estate


justify a court's immediately taking some kind of temporary action even
without the required notice, no such emergency is shown in this case.
The need for the proper notice even for the appointment of a special
administrator is apparent from the circumstances of this case.

The respondent Judge himself explains that the order for the
preservation of the estate was limited to properties not claimed by third
parties. If certain properties are already in the possession of the
applicant for special administratrix and are not claimed by other
persons, we see no need to hurry up and take special action to
preserve those properties. As it is, the sheriffs took advantage of the
questioned order to seize by force, properties found in the residence of
the petitioner which he vehemently claims are owned by him and not by
the estate of the deceased person.
disallowed in any of the followingcases:(a) If not executed and attested as
SPOUSES AJERO vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS required by law;(b) If the testator was insane, or otherwise mentally
G.R. No. 106720 September 15, 1994 incapable to make a will, at the time of itsexecution;(c) If it was executed
(Rule 76 - Allowance or Disallowance of Will) under duress, or the influence of fear, or threats;(d) If it was procured by
FACTS: undue and improper pressure and influence, on the part of the beneficiary,or
The holographic will of Annie Sand, who died on November 25, 1982, was of some other person for his benefit;(e) If the signature of the testator was
submitted for probate in theRTC of Quezon City. In the will, the following procured by fraud or trick, and he did not intend that theinstrument should be
were named as devisees: petitioners Roberto and ThelmaAjero, private his will at the time of fixing his signature thereto.These lists are exclusive; no
respondent Clemente Sand, Meriam S. Arong, Leah Sand, Lilia Sand, Edgar other grounds can serve to disallow a will.
Sand, Fe Sand,Lisa S. Sand, and Dr. Jose Ajero, Sr., and their children.
Petitioners filed for allowance of decedent'sholographic will, alleging that at Thus, in a petition to admit aholographic will to probate, the only issues to be
the time of its execution, she was of sound and disposing mind, not resolved are: (1) whether the instrument submitted is,indeed, the decedent's
actingunder duress, fraud or undue influence, and was in every respect last will and testament; (2) whether said will was executed in accordance with
capacitated to dispose of her estate bywill. Private respondent opposed the theformalities prescribed by law; (3) whether the decedent had the necessary
petition on the grounds that: neither the testament's body nor thesignature testamentary capacity at thetime the will was executed; and, (4) whether the
therein was in decedent's handwriting; it contained alterations and execution of the will and its signing were the voluntaryacts of the decedent
corrections which were notduly signed by decedent; and, the will was
procured by petitioners through improper pressure and undueinfluence. The In the case of holographic wills, on the other hand, what assures authenticity
petition was likewise opposed by Dr. Jose Ajero. He contested the is the requirement that theybe totally autographic or handwritten by the
disposition in the will of ahouse and lot located in Cabadbaran, Agusan Del testator himself. Failure to strictly observe other formalitieswill not result in
Norte. He claimed that said property could not beconveyed by decedent in its the disallowance of a holographic will that is unquestionably handwritten by
entirety, as she was not its sole owner. The trial court admitted thedecedent's the testator.
holographic will to probate, finding that the question of identity of the will, its DECISION:
due executionand the testamentary capacity of the testatrix to be resolved in IN VIEW WHEREOF, the instant petition is GRANTED. The Decision of the
favor of the allowance of probate of thesubmitted will. On appeal, said Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CVNo. 22840, dated March 30, 1992, is
Decision was reversed by the Court of Appeals which found that, REVERSED and SET ASIDE, except with respect to the invalidity of
"theholographic will fails to meet the requirements for its validity." Thus, this thedisposition of the entire house and lot in Cabadbaran, Agusan del Norte.
appeal which is impressed withmerit. The Decision of the Regional TrialCourt of Quezon City, Branch 94 in Sp.
Proc. No. Q-37171, dated November 19, 1988, admitting to probatethe
ISSUE: holographic will of decedent Annie Sand, is hereby REINSTATED, with the
Whether the admission for probate of the holographic will in question is valid above qualification asregards the Cabadbaran property. No costs.
since probate proceedingsare limited to pass only upon the extrinsic validity
of the will sought to be probated. SO ORDERED.
HELD:
Yes, the admission of the said holographic will is valid. As a general rule,
courts in probate proceedingsare limited to pass only upon the
extrinsic validity of the will sought to be probated.
However, inexceptional instances, courts are not powerless to do what the
situation constrains them to do, and passupon certain provisions of the will.

In the case at bench, decedent herself indubitably stated in herholographic


will that the Cabadbaran property is in the name of her late father, John H.
Sand (which ledoppositor Dr. Jose Ajero to question her conveyance of the
same in its entirety). Thus, as correctly held byrespondent court, she cannot
validly dispose of the whole property, which she shares with her father'sother
heirs.Section 9, Rule 76 of the Rules of Court provides that a will shall be
Kalaw v. Relova because she failed to authenticate it in the manner required by law by affixing
132 SCRA 237 her full signature,

FACTS: The ruling in Velasco, supra, must be held confined to such


insertions, cancellations, erasures or alterations in a holographic Will, which
On September 1, 1971,Gregorio Kalaw, claiming to be the sole heir of his affect only the efficacy of the altered words themselves but not the essence
deceased sister, Natividad Kalaw, filed a petition for the probate of and validity of the Will itself. As it is, with the
her holographic Will executed on December 24, 1968. erasures, cancellations and alterations made by the testatrix herein, her real
intention cannot be determined with certitude.
The holographic Will, as first written, named Rosa Kalaw, a sister of the
testatrix as her sole heir. She opposed probate alleging that
the holographic Will contained alterations, corrections, and insertions without
the proper authentication by the full signature of the testatrix as required by
Article 814 of the Civil Code reading: Art. 814. In case of any insertion,
cancellation, erasure or alteration in a holographic will the testator must
authenticate the same by his full signature.

ROSA’s position was that the holographic Will, as first written, should be
given effect and probated so that she could be the sole heir thereunder.

Trial Court denied petition to probate the holographic will. Reconsideration


denied.

ISSUE:

W/N the original unaltered text after subsequent alterations and insertions
were voided by the Trial Court for lack of authentication by the full signature
of the testatrix, should be probated or not, with Rosa as sole heir.

HELD:

Ordinarily, when a number of erasures, corrections, and interlineations made


by the testator in a holographic Will litem not been noted under his signature,
… the Will is not thereby invalidated as a whole, but at most only as respects
the particular words erased, corrected or interlined.

However, when as in this case, the holographic Will in dispute had only one
substantial provision, which was altered by substituting the original heir with
another, but which alteration did not carry the requisite of
full authentication by the full signature of the testator, the effect must be that
the entire Will is voided or revoked for the simple reason that nothing
remains in the Will after that which could remain valid. To state that the Will
as first written should be given efficacy is to disregard the seeming change of
mind of the testatrix. But that change of mind can neither be given effect
Kalaw v. Relova because she failed to authenticate it in the manner required by law by affixing
132 SCRA 237 her full signature,

FACTS: The ruling in Velasco, supra, must be held confined to such


insertions, cancellations, erasures or alterations in a holographic Will, which
On September 1, 1971,Gregorio Kalaw, claiming to be the sole heir of his affect only the efficacy of the altered words themselves but not the essence
deceased sister, Natividad Kalaw, filed a petition for the probate of and validity of the Will itself. As it is, with the
her holographic Will executed on December 24, 1968. erasures, cancellations and alterations made by the testatrix herein, her real
intention cannot be determined with certitude.
The holographic Will, as first written, named Rosa Kalaw, a sister of the
testatrix as her sole heir. She opposed probate alleging that
the holographic Will contained alterations, corrections, and insertions without
the proper authentication by the full signature of the testatrix as required by
Article 814 of the Civil Code reading: Art. 814. In case of any insertion,
cancellation, erasure or alteration in a holographic will the testator must
authenticate the same by his full signature.

ROSA’s position was that the holographic Will, as first written, should be
given effect and probated so that she could be the sole heir thereunder.

Trial Court denied petition to probate the holographic will. Reconsideration


denied.

ISSUE:

W/N the original unaltered text after subsequent alterations and insertions
were voided by the Trial Court for lack of authentication by the full signature
of the testatrix, should be probated or not, with Rosa as sole heir.

HELD:

Ordinarily, when a number of erasures, corrections, and interlineations made


by the testator in a holographic Will litem not been noted under his signature,
… the Will is not thereby invalidated as a whole, but at most only as respects
the particular words erased, corrected or interlined.

However, when as in this case, the holographic Will in dispute had only one
substantial provision, which was altered by substituting the original heir with
another, but which alteration did not carry the requisite of
full authentication by the full signature of the testator, the effect must be that
the entire Will is voided or revoked for the simple reason that nothing
remains in the Will after that which could remain valid. To state that the Will
as first written should be given efficacy is to disregard the seeming change of
mind of the testatrix. But that change of mind can neither be given effect