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Heirs of Marasigan v Intermediate Appellate Court & Maria Marron

GR No. L-69303 (June 23, 1987)


Facts:
This case involves a disputed property identified as Lot 2-A, owned by Fe Springael-Bazar and Felicisimo
Bazar.
On April 24, 1975, A civil case was filed in the Court of First Instance of Manila, Branch XIII by a certain
Maria Marron which seeks to compel the spouses Bazar to execute a registrable Deed of Absolute Sale in favor of
the former. On January 27, 1976, while the case was still pending, Maria Marron caused the annotation of a notice of
lis pendens at the back of the Transfer Certificate of Title of the spouses Bazar. On February 24, 1976, the Court of
First Instance rendered judgment in favor of Maria Marron.
After the judgment became final and executory, Maria Marron filed a motion for execution which was
likewise granted by the same court. Thus a writ of execution was issued by the court on July 12, 1976. The spouses
Bazar, however, refused to surrender their title to the property in question and to execute the required Deed of Sale.
As a result, the lower court ordered the Clerk of Court to execute the Deed of Sale in behalf of the spouses.
Prior to the civil case instituted by Maria Marron, on December 18, 1974, a deed of absolute sale of Lot 2-A
was executed by Fe Bazar in favor of Maria Marasigan for the amount of P15,000. However, it was only on July 5,
1977 that said deed was registered with the Registry of Deeds of Manila. Consequently, the Transfer Certificate of
Title of the spouses were cancelled and a new title was issued in Marasigan's name and likewise the notice of lis
pendens caused to be annotated by Marron was carried over to the new title.
Meanwhile on May 26, 1977, the Bazars filed a petition for relief from judgment dated February 24, 1976
and while their petition was pending, the spouses moved to set aside said judgment on June 22, 1979 on the ground
of lack of jurisdiction. On the other hand, on February 24, 1979, Marron instituted a Land Registration Court case
against Maria Marasigan praying that the Register of Deeds of Manila be required to register the deed of sale
executed by the Clerk of Court in behalf of the spouses Bazar, but the case was dismissed on the ground that the
Land Registration Court had no jurisdiction over the case.
On September 6, 1979, Marron filed another case in the Court of First Instance of Manila which seeks to
nullify Marasigan's title over the subject lot. However the case was dismissed by the lower court on the ground that
Marron's complaint was premature since the judgment rendered by CF Iof Manila, Branch XIII had not yet become
final and executory. On appeal, the Intermediate Appellate Court ruled that Marron is entitled to the subject property
by virtue of the notice of lis pendens and that the decision of CFI of Manila, Branch XIII had become final and
executory because the petition for relief from judgment of the spouses Bazar was filed out of time.
Issue:
Who between Maria Marron and Maria Marasigan has better right over the subject lot?
Ruling:
The Court ruled that Maria Marron has the better right over the subject property.
It was shown that Maria Marasigan acquired the subject property four months before Maria Marron filed a
civil case seeking to compel the spouses Bazar to execute a deed of absolute sale in her favor. However, the
transaction between Marasigan and spouses Bazar became effective only as against third persons on July 5, 1977
when it was registered with the Registry of Deeds. Thus, there is no question that when the RoD issued the new
certificate of title to Marasigan, the notice of lis pendens was carried over to such title.
A notice of lis pendens means that a certain property is involved in a litigation and serves as a notice to the
whole world that one who buys the same does it at his own risk. Thus it was a clear notice to Marasigan that there

was a court case affecting her rights to the property she purchased. It is an established rule that the filing of a notice
of lis pendens charges all strangers with a notice of the particular litigation referred to therein and therefore, any right
they may thereafter acquire on the property is subject to the eventuality of the suit. In the present case, Maria Marron
was granted with the right over Lot 2-A and as a result thereof, Maria Marasigan lost her right over the subject
property because she was bound by the outcome of the litigation between Marron and spouses Bazar.
The spouses Bazar failed to file an appeal from the adverse judgment dated February 24, 1976. The 30-day
period under the old rule (Rule 41, section 3 of the Revised Rules of Court) within which the Bazars could have filed
an appeal started to run on May 12, 1976, when they were served with the copy of said decision. Thus, on June 11,
1976, the decision of CFI of Manila, Branch XIII became final and executory. At that point, the spouses Bazar had no
longer any right to alienate the property subject of the litigation. Any transaction entered into during the pendency of
the case is subject to the risks in the notice of lis pendens and to the outcome of the case.
Moreover, the petition for relief from judgment filed by the spouses Bazar was also filed beyond the two
periods provided under Section 3, Rule 38 of the Revised Rules of Court. Under said rule, a verified petition must be
filed within sixty days from notice of the judgment or order of the Court and not more than six months after such
judgment or order was entered into. In the present case, the 60-day period must be reckoned from May 12. 1976,
when the spouses were served with the copy of the assailed decision. Thus, the 60-day period expired on July 11,
1976. A period of ten months had already elapsed when the Bazars filed their petition for relief from judgment on May
26, 1977 and as a consequence, the heirs of Marasigan are now precluded from questioning the effects of the final
and executory judgment rendered in favor of Marron.
Likewise, the heirs of Marasigan cannot raise the issues of prescription and laches. It was the Bazars who
were the proper parties to raise such defenses either in a motion to dismiss or in their answer. Since they did not do
so, the same were deemed waived.