RABADILLA vs. CA

Posted: May 1, 2017 in case digests, succession, Uncategorized
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RABADILLA vs. CA

G.R. No. 113725, June 06, 2000 – Gem

 

Facts:

In a Codicil appended to the Last Will and Testament of testatrix Aleja Belleza, Dr. Jorge Rabadilla, predecessor-in-interest of the herein petitioner, Johnny S. Rabadilla, was instituted as a devisee of a parcel of land. The said Codicil, which was duly probated before the then CFI of Negros Occidental. Pursuant to the same Codicil, the subject land was transferred to the deceased, Dr. Jorge Rabadilla, and the Transfer Certificate of Title thereto was issued in his name.Dr. Jorge Rabadilla died and was survived by his wife Rufina and children Johnny (petitioner), Aurora, Ofelia and Zenaida, all surnamed Rabadilla.

Respondent brought a complaintbefore the RTC in Bacolod City, against the above-mentioned heirs of Dr. Jorge Rabadilla, to enforce the provisions of subject Codicil. The Complaint alleged that the defendant-heirs violated the conditions of the Codicil.

The plaintiff then prayed for the reconveyance/return of the subject land to the surviving heirs of the late Aleja Belleza, because it is alleged that petitioner failed to comply with the terms of the will; that since 1985, Johnny failed to deliver the fruits; and that the the land was mortgaged to the Philippine National Bank, which is a violation of the will.

In his defense, Johnny avers that the term “near descendants” in the will of Aleja pertains to the near descendants of Aleja and not to the near descendants of Dr. Rabadilla, hence, since Aleja had no near descendants at the time of his death, no can substitute Dr. Rabadilla on the obligation to deliver the fruits of the devised land.

 

Issue:

WON the testamentary institution of Dr. Rabadilla is a modal institution.

 

Held:

YES. The Court of Appeals erred not in ruling that the institution of Dr. Jorge Rabadilla under subject Codicil is in the nature of a modal institution and therefore, Article 882 of the New Civil Code is the provision of law in point.From the provisions of the Codicil litigated upon, it can be gleaned unerringly that the testatrix intended that subject property be inherited by Dr. Jorge Rabadilla. It is likewise clearly worded that the testatrix imposed an obligation on the said instituted heir and his successors-in-interest to deliver one hundred piculs of sugar to the herein private respondent, Marlena Coscolluela Belleza, during the lifetime of the latter. However, the testatrix did not make Dr. Jorge Rabadilla’s inheritance and the effectivity of his institution as a devisee, dependent on the performance of the said obligation. It is clear, though, that should the obligation be not complied with, the property shall be turned over to the testatrix’s near descendants. The manner of institution of Dr. Jorge Rabadilla under subject Codicil is evidently modal in nature because it imposes a charge upon the instituted heir without, however, affecting the efficacy of such institution.

 

 

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