You are on page 1of 2

Laperal v.

Katigbak
No. L-16991, March 31, 1964
Gatmaitan, J. / KMD

SUBJECT MATTER: Property Relations; Conjugal Partnership of Gains; Excluded from CPG; Exclusive Property

CASE SUMMARY:
In Laperal v. Katigbak, Laperal filed a case against Katigbak for the recovery of P14,000 commission on sale and
P97,000 worth of jewelry. This led to Evelina Kalaw-Katigbak, wife of Ramon Katigbak to file a complaint against
her husband with prayer for the judicial separation of property and separate administration. The trial found that the
certain land property was registered under Evelina Kalaw’s name and was bought by her mother. Thus, it declared
the disputed land as exclusive/paraphernal property of Evelina Kalaw. This judgment as affirmed by the Supreme
Court which held that the presumption that the properties obtained during the marriage are conjugal is rebuttable. It
also used the Ciongco doctrine to rebut the presumption.

DOCTRINES:
The legal presumption that all properties acquired during the marriage are conjugal is rebuttable. In the case at
bar, the property in question is paraphernal (exclusive) despite its having been acquired during coverture (marriage)
as proven by the following circumstances: the disputed land is in the name of the wife; the property was of such
substantial value as the husband then by himself could not have afforded to buy; the purchase price was furnished by
the wife's mother; it was established that it was a practice of the wife's parents to so provide their children with
money to purchase realties for themselves; and, the husband expressly acknowledged in the deed of sale that the did
not have any interest in the property.

FACTS:
 This is an appeal from the CFI decision declaring the disputed property to be the separate or paraphernal
(exclusive) property of the defendant-appellee Evelina Kalaw.
o The petitioners, the Laperal spouses, believe that the disputed property, with its improvements and
income, is a conjugal asset of the spouses Evelina Kalaw and Ramon Katigbak.
 Back in August 1950, the Laperals filed a suit against Katigbak and Kalaw for the recovery of P14,000 as sale on
commission and jewelry worth P97,500.00.
o The trial court ruled against Katigbak, ordering him to pay the Laperals the sum of P14,000, and
to return the jewelry involved or pay P97,500.00, with interest.
 About a month after this decision, Kalaw filed a complaint against her husband Katigbak, with prayer for judicial
separation of property and separate administration.
 On February 1, 1955, the Laperals filed another complaint against Kalaw and Katigbak, praying for the annulment
of the proceedings for judicial separation of property and separate administration and to secure a ruling declaring
the real property as conjugal property of Katigbak and Kalaw.
o The court dismissed the complaint.
o Laperals appealed to the SC.
o SC remanded the case to trial court further proceedings to determine whether the property is
indeed conjugal or not. It held that while the fruits of the paraphernal (exclusive) property of
Kalaw are not liable for the enforcement of the obligations contracted by Katigbak, nevertheless,
the conjugal properties are.
 The trial court, rendered judgment declaring the disputed property as paraphernal (exclusive). Decision was based
on the following facts:
o Ramon Katigbak and Evelina Kalaw were married in 1938.
o Ramon was an Asst. Atty. of the Bank of the Phil. Islands with a monthly salary of P 200.
o Disputed property was registered in the name of 'Evelina Kalaw- Katigbak,
o Her mother, Pura Villanueva, was the one that had bought that property for her and had placed it
only in her name as was the practice of her mother (recognized by Article 1448)
o Ramon Katigbak, made a manifestation that he had no interest in the properties.
ISSUE: WON the above findings warrant a rejection of the presumption that the property disputed, for the reason
that it was acquired during the marriage, is conjugal. (YES)

HOLDING:
YES, the SC held that the conjugal presumption has been rebutted.
There is no denying that all properties acquired during the marriage are, by law, presumed conjugal, unless
it be proved that it belongs exclusively to the husband or to the wife. In this case, the presumption has been
sufficiently and convincingly disproven.
In Coingco case, the presumption that the properties in litigation are conjugal properties because they were
acquired during the coverture may be sufficiently rebutted by any one of the following facts: (1) the titles to them
are in the name of the wife alone; (2) that the husband gave his marital consent to their being mortgaged by the wife;
(3) that the wife was financially able to buy those properties.
In this case, it was found that (1) disputed land is in the name of the Evelina Kalaw, (2) the husband, by
himself could not have afforded to buy, considering that his singular source of income then was his P200.00; (3) that
the purchase price was furnished by her mother so she could buy the property for herself; and (4) that Ramon
Katigbak, made a manifestation that he had no interest in the properties.

Lower court judgment is AFFIRMED.