Friday, March 30, 2012

Mariategui vs. CA

FactsLupo Mariategui died without a will. During his lifetime, he contracted three marriages. With his first wife in 1953, he begot 4 children; with his second wife in, a daughter. Lupo and Felipa, the third wife, got married sometime in 1930. They had three children. 

At the time of Lupo’s death, he left certain properties whch he acquired when he was still unmarried. Lupo’s descendants by his first and second marriages executed a deed of extrajudicial partition whereby they adjudicated unto themselves said lot. Lupo’s children by his third marriage now claims that they were depreived of their respective shares in the lots. They pray for partition of the estate of their deceased father and annulment of the deed of extrajudicial partition. 

IssueWhether or not the children from the 3rd marriage were able to prove their successional right over said estate 

HeldYES. Lupo Mariategui and Felipa Velasco were alleged to have been lawfully married in or about 1930. This fact is based on the declaration communicated by Lupo Mariategui to Jacinto who testified that "when (his) father was still living, he was able to mention to (him) that he and (his) mother were able to get married before a Justice of the Peace of Taguig, Rizal." The spouses deported themselves as husband and wife, and were known in the community to be such. Although no marriage certificate was introduced to this effect, no evidence was likewise offered to controvert these facts. Moreover, the mere fact that no record of the marriage exists does not invalidate the marriage, provided all requisites for its validity are present. 

Article 172 of the said Code provides that the filiation of legitimate children may be established by the record of birth appearing in the civil register or a final judgment or by the open and continuous possession of the status of a legitimate child. 

Evidence on record proves the legitimate filiation of the private respondents. Jacinto's (son from 3rd marriage) birth certificate is a record of birth referred to in the said article. Again, no evidence which tends to disprove facts contained therein was adduced before the lower court. In the case of the two other private respondents, Julian and Paulina (daughters form the 3rd marriage), they may not have presented in evidence any of the documents required by Article 172 but they continuously enjoyed the status of children of Lupo Mariategui in the same manner as their brother Jacinto.

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