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indispensable parties. Explained the trial court:

"This Court holds that the dismissal of the case on the ground that the indispensable parties, particularly the heirs of one Rosalina Ayo, were not impleaded, was at best premature for it deprived the petitioners their day in Court and their opportunity to present evidence to substantiate their petition. A close scrutiny of the petitioners' petition and annexes would show that petitioners anchored their cause of action essentially on the ruling of the Court of Appeals dated July 31, 2006 (Annex 'F') where the dispositive portion thereof directed the Register of Deeds of Sorsogon to correct the entry in OCT No. P-9011 from 'MARRIED TO ROSALINA AYO' to 'MARRIED TO DOLORES LIM'. Said decision has become final and executory. In the said decision, the Court of Appeals had made a definitive ruling to the effect that appellees (who were the heirs of Rosalina Ayo) failed to prove by convincing evidence that Alfredo de Vera was married to Rosalina Ayo. The Court of Appeals declared that appellees failed to establish the fact of marriage between Rosalina Ayo and Alfredo de Vera, as well as their filiation with the latter.

Applying the doctrine of conclusiveness of judgment, the Court holds that petitioners have amply demonstrated their cause of action for the correction of entries in another document which is OCT NO. P-9011. Conclusiveness of judgment states that a fact or question which was in issue in a former suit and it was judicially passed upon and determined by a court of competent jurisdiction, is conclusively settled by the judgment therein as far as the parties to that action and persons in privity with them are concerned and cannot be again litigated in any future action between such parties or their parties on their the same [sic] or different cause of action, while the judgment remains unreversed by proper authority.

At any rate, such ruling of the Court of Appeals is still evidentiary and needs to be presented as evidence in this proceeding but there is really no compelling reason for the dismissal of the case. However, in the interest of justice, this case should not be deemed as an ex-parte proceeding as the petitioners sought this to be. This case should be considered adversarial in nature by applying by analogy the provisions of Rule 108 of the Rules of Court. It is indeed evident that there are persons who may have claim or interest which would be affected should this petition be granted. Thus, the Office of the Register of Deeds of Sorsogon and the legal heirs of Rosalina Ayo, who will be affected by this proceeding concerning the cancellation of correction of the entries in the aforementioned Original Certificate of Title, should be impleaded as indispensable parties and should be duly notified of the proceedings. Indeed, the requirements of

fair play and due process should be upheld and complied [with] in this case."26

Again, the petitioners moved for partial reconsideration but the same was denied in the third assailed November 06, 2008, Order, viz.:

"The instant case does not only involve the simple correction of erroneous entry in the certificate of Title subject of this case; this case, if the same would be granted, will result to affect the proprietary rights of the heirs of ROSALINA AYO, that if not to implead them as indispensable parties in the instant case would deprive them their day in Court to contest the same. In the interest of justice and fair play, the proceedings of the case should be therefore an adversarial one, but nor [sic] merely an ex parte proceeding."27

Hence, this petition.


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petition below for correction of entry/ies and in failing to apply the doctrine of res judicata against Ayo, et al.

On the other hand, in its Comment29 and Memorandum,30 the Office of the Solicitor General argues that notice to all parties in interest is necessary before a court may act on petitions for correction,31 and since the records reveal the neither the Register of Deeds nor Ayo, et. al. were notified of the subject petition, the court a quo failed to acquire jurisdiction over the petition below.32

The law in point, particularly Section 112 of Act No. 496, otherwise known as The Land Registration Act (now Section 108 of Presidential Decree No. 1529, or the Property Registration Decree), provides:

"SEC. 112. No erasure, alteration, or amendment shall be made upon the registration book after the entry of a certificate of title or a memorandum thereon and the attestation of the same by the clerk or any register of deeds, except by order of the court. Any registered owner or other person in interest may at any time apply by petition to the court, upon the ground that registered interests of any description, whether vested, contingent, expectant, or inchoate, have terminated and ceased; or that the new interests have arisen or been created which do not appear upon the certificate, or that any error, omission, or mistake was made in entering a certificate; or that the name of any person on the certificate has been changed; or that the registered owner has been married; or, if registered as married, that the marriage has been terminated; or that a corporation which owned registered land and has been dissolved has not conveyed the same within three years after its dissolution; or upon any other reasonable ground; and the court shall have jurisdiction to hear and determine the petition after notice to all parties in interest, and may order the entry of a new certificate, the entry or cancellation of a memorandum upon a certificate, or grant any other

relief upon such terms and conditions, requiring

security if necessary, as it may deem proper; Provided, however, That this section shall not be construed to give the court authority to open the original decree of registration, and that nothing shall be done or ordered by the court which shall impair the title or other interest of a purchaser holding a certificate for value and in good faith, or his heirs or assigns, without his or their written consent.

29 Ibid., pp. 119-127.

30 lbid., pp. 179-187.

31 Rollo, p. 122.

32 lbid., p. 125.

Any petition filed under this section and all petitions and motions filed under the provisions of this Act after original registration shall be filed and entitled in the original case in which the decree of registration was entered."33 (italics supplied, emphasis Ours)

From the foregoing, it is clear that notice to all parties in interest is necessary before a court may act on petitions for correction.34 Yet, a cursory review of the records reveals that the petitioners failed to notify the appropriate Register of Deeds and Ayo, et al. when they instituted the subject petition, explaining that the instant petition for correction of entry/ies is merely an ex-parte proceeding. However, an ex-parte proceeding presupposes the existence of an enforceable right of petitioners with no adverse party to oppose it.35 An ex parte proceeding merely means that it is taken or granted at the instance of and for the benefit of one party, and without notice to or contestation by any party who may be adversely affected36 by it.

But contrarily, and far from it, a petition to alter or amend a certificate of title entails compliance of certain requisites: (1) It must be filed and entitled in the original registration case; (2) by the registered owner or a person in interest; (3) on the grounds enumerated in Sec. 108; (4) all the parties in interest must be notified; (5) there should be unanimity among them; and (6) the original decree of registration must not be opened nor the title or other interest of a purchaser for value in good faith or his heirs or assignees, impaired without his or their written consent.37

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or person in interest may petition the court for the correction of a title on the ground that an error, omission, or mistake was made in entering a certificate or any memorandum thereon, or on any duplicate certificate, the court can only act on it after notice to all parties in interest has been made, which notice may be served either by the petitioner or by order of the court. Such notice is necessary to give jurisdiction to the court over the petition. It in fact, is mandated by Section 112 of Act No. 496, as amended, which says that "the court shall have jurisdiction to hear and determine the petition after notice to all parties in interest."39

In sum, the RTC's assailed Orders are null and void, not because of infirmities raised by the petitioners in this petition but on the basic ground that it failed to comply with the notice requirement as mandated by law.

39 lbid.

WHEREFORE, premises considered, the instant petition is DISMISSED. However, the assailed Orders dated June 04, 2008, September 10, 2008 and November 06, 2008 are hereby SET ASIDE for having been rendered without jurisdiction. Let this

case be remanded to the court below for its

appropriate action.


Acosta and Bueser*, JJ., concur.

Petition dismissed.


Pursuant to Article VIII, Section 13 of the Constitution, it is hereby certified that the conclusions in the above Decision were reached in consultation before the case was assigned to the writer of the opinion of the Court.

Associate Justice

Chairperson, Special Seventeenth Division

Acting Junior Member; Per Office Order No. 34-10-ABR dated March 30, 2010.

[CV No. 68353. May 25, 2010] *

MA. LUISA Y. ABON, petitioner-appellee, vs. ARTURO ABON, respondent-appellee, REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, oppositorappellant.


1. CIVIL LAW; FAMILY CODE; NULLITY OF MARRIAGE; PSYCHOLOGICAL INCAPACITY UNDER ARTICLE 36; PSYCHOLOGICAL INCAPACITY LIMITED IN SCOPE TO A MENTAL (NOT PHYSICAL) INCAPACITY THAT CAUSES A PARTY TO BE TRULY INCOGNITIVE OF THE BASIC MARITAL COVENANTS THAT CONCOMITANTLY MUST BE ASSUMED AND DISCHARGED BY THE PARTIES TO THE MARRIAGE.-It bears stressing that the "psychological incapacity contemplated in this article was not meant to comprehend all such possible cases of psychoses. Rather, it is limited in scope to a mental (not physical) incapacity that causes a party to be truly incognitive of the basic marital covenants that concomitantly must be assumed and discharged by the parties to the marriage.

2. ID.; ID.; ID.; ID.; A PETITION FOR NULLITY BASED ON PSYCHOLOGICAL INCAPACITY MUST ALWAYS PROVE THE GRAVITY, ROOT CAUSE INCURABILITY OF THE INCAPACITY AND THE FACT THAT IT EXISTED PRIOR TO OR AT THE TIME OF CELEBRATION OF THE MARRIAGE BEFORE IT CAN BE GIVEN DUE COURSE.-Verily, if a petition for nullity based on psychological incapacity is to be given due course, its gravity, root cause, incurability and the fact that it existed prior to or at the time of celebration of the marriage must always be proved. The incapacity must be grave or serious such that the party would be incapable of carrying out the ordinary duties required in marriage; it must be rooted in the history of the party antedating the marriage, although the overt manifestations may emerge only after the marriage; and it must be incurable of if otherwise, the cure must be beyond the means of the party involved.


Court of Appeals Reports Annotated, Vol. 48.

4. ID.;

INSENSITIVITY OR INABILITY TO GIVE MEANING AND SIGNIFICANCE TO THE MARRIAGE.-The guidelines in the interpretation and application of Article 36 of the Family Code, as laid down by the Supreme Court in Republic vs. Court of Appeals, must be strictly complied with. Consequently, the grant of a petition for nullity of marriage based on psychological incapacity should have been confined only to the most serious cases of personality disorders that clearly demonstrate an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and significance to the marriage.

ID.; ID.;


"PSYCHOLOGICAL INCAPACITY" AS CONTEMPLATED IN ARTICLE 36, IS MORE THAN JUST A "DIFFICULTY," A "REFUSAL" OR A "NEGLECT" IN THE PERFORMANCE OF SOME MARITAL OBLIGATIONS; IT IS NOT ENOUGH THAT THE RESPONDENTSPOUSE HAD DIFFICULTY OR WAS UNWILLING TO PERFORM HIS MARITAL OBLIGATIONS.-Here, petitioner Luisa merely alleged during her direct examination that respondent Arturo: (1) is an indefferent and irresponsible husband who is not prepared for martial duties and obligations; (2) still felt like a bachelor enjoying nightlife pleasure in the company of his "barkadas," indulging in drinking session; (3) was a chronic gambler; (4) no longer expressed love, care and affection to her and their children; (5) did not even look for a job to support his family; and (6) had a mistress. Evident, they do not constitute "psychological incapacity," as contemplated in Article 36, which is more than just a "difficulty," a "refusal' or a "neglect" in the performance of some marital obligations. It is not enough that respondent Arturo had difficulty or as unwilling to perform his marital obligations. Proof of a natal or supervening disabling factor, an adverse integral element in respondent's personality structure that effectively incapacitated him from complying with his essential marital obligations, should have been shown. This, petitioner Luisa failed to do.

APPEAL from a judgment of the Regional Trial Court of Valenzuela, Branch 75.

The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.

The Solicitor General for oppositorappellant Republic of the Philippines.



The Case

On appeal by oppositor Republic of the Philippines, represented by the Office of the Solicitor General ("OSG") is the Decision1 dated June 23, 1999 of the Regional Trial Court of Valenzuela2 ("RTC"), in Civil Case No. 121-V-99 entitled "Ma. Luisa Y. Abon, Petitioner versus Arturo Abon, Respondent", the dispositive portion of which reads:

WHEREFORE, PREMISES CONSIDERED, judgment is hereby rendered declaring the marriage of the petitioner and respondent on April 16, 1978 as NULL and VOID.

SO ORDERED."3 (emphasis supplied)

The Facts

This case stems from a verified Petition for Annulment of Marriage filed by petitioner Ma. Luisa Y. Abon ("Luisa") against her husband, Arturo Abon ("Arturo"). Petitioner's allegations, as culled from the assailed Decision, are as follows:

*, that she was married to ARTURO C. ABON on April 16, 1978 at St. John the Baptist Church in San Juan, Metro Manila, evidenced by their Marriage Contract (Exhibit 'B'); that after the celebration of their marriage, they lived together as husband and wife and they were blessed with two (2) children namely, ARTHUR and AERON both surnamed ABON; that during the early part of their marriage[,] they were so sweet and romantic, however, after the birth of their first child[,] their relationship turned bitter and sour; that petitioner found out that respondent is an indifferent,

irresponsible husband, he is not prepare[d] for marital duties and obligation[:] he feels that he is still bachelor enjoying nightlife pleasure in the company of 'barkadas' indulging in alcoholic session and chronic gambling; that the respondent is irresponsible father of the family[;] he does not even bother to express love[,] care and affection[,] not only to his children but also to the petitioner; he does not look for a job to support his family; that the petitioner discovered that she [sic] has a mistress and their relationship became chaotic, the respondent developed hate and angry attitude against petitioner[:] he has psychotic and neurotic manifestation and psychologically incapacitated to perform his duties and obligation as a father of the family and

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husband to the petitioner; that worst[,] the respondent in 1992 abandoned his family and choose [sic] to live with another woman[.] [H]ence, petitioner filed this case of annulment of marriage."5 (emphasis Ours)

On May 18, 1999, the RTC issued an Order directing the State Prosecutor to conduct an investigation to determine whether collusion exists between the parties. In compliance therewith, 2nd Asst. City Prosecutor Bayani M. Jamias manifested that he "find[s] no evidence of collusion between the petitioner and the respondent in the filing of this instant complaint."7

On June 14, 1999, the RTC noted that respondent Arturo did not file any responsive pleading nor appear at the scheduled hearing that day. As a result, petitioner was allowed to present evidence ex-parte.

On even date, Regine Marmee Cosico, a psychologist, and petitioner Luisa herself were presented as witnesses. They were not cross-examined by the trial prosecutor. Thereafter, the court admitted petitioner's formal offer of evidence and petitioner rested her case. The case was deemed submitted for decision on that very same day.

On June 23, 1999, the RTC rendered the herein assailed Decision declaring the marriage between petitioner Luisa and respondent Arturo null and void.

The Ruling of the Court


In its assailed June 23, 1999 Decision, the RTC held:

"Based on the evidence presented, both testimonial and documentary, this court take cognizance on [sic] the report conducted by the witness/pcychologist REGINE MARMEE C. Cosico which is the most vital basis whether this Court would deny or grant this petition.

As testified to by the said witness, that she conducted psychological test on the petitioner and

5 Records, page 23.

6 lbid., page 9.

7 lbid., page 10.

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