Jabonete vs. Monteverde Digest

“The Right of Way that Did Not Transfer to the Next Owner”

Facts

On May 12, 1954, Antonio Legaspi received a copy of CFI Davao decision entitled Jabonete v. Monteverde et al. dated Mar 11, 1954 that he acquired the lot in question with the knowledge that an easement of right of way existed thereon (CFI Davao Mar 11, 1954, Case 824)

Two days later, on May 14, 1954, he filed his notice of appeal. On May 21, 1954, however, upon a previous motion of the plaintiffs Genoveva Jabonete, the lower court issued an order granting discretionary execution of the said decision.

Then, the plaintiffs immediately proceeded to the premises in question and opened in the fence of the defendant Antonio Legaspi a sufficient opening for the passage of men and vehicles.

defendant filed a motion for the reconsideration of the order granting discretionary execution. upon the lower court’s suggestion, the parties entered into an amicable agreement which was later embodied in order or “auto” dated May 24, 1954

As a result of the above agreement, the parties abandoned the prosecution of his appeal, and the plaintiffs Genoveva transferred to another place in December 1959. The defendant then reconstructed his fence and its footing, closing the opening previously made by the plaintiffs.

Plaintiffs Genoveva’s lot was foreclosed by the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) which later conveyed it under a conditional sale to Mrs. Luz Arcilla. Mrs. Arcilla demanded of Antonio Legaspi the re-opening of the fence in question as it was her plan to construct her house in the said lot.

When the defendant refused, the Development Bank filed with the lower court a petition to hold the said defendant in contempt. Their reason is that it is in defiance against the court’s decision on March 11, 1954 and was, therefore, contemptuous.

DBP and Mrs. Arcilla filed with RTC of Davao

⚖️ RTC Ruling March 11, 1960: Antonio Legaspi, guilty of contempt of court, and imposing upon him a fine of P100.00; and to open the vereda or alley leading to the lot owned by the Development Bank of the Philippines and conveyed to Mrs. Luz S. Arcilla under a conditional deed of sale

Antonio Legaspi appealed to SC.

Is Antonio Legaspi Guilty of Contempt by defying the court’s decision on March 11, 1954? No.

the order of May 24, 1954 superseded and was intended by the lower court to substitute the decision of March 11, 1958. May 24, 1954 amicable settlement, a contract, became a voluntary easement. it modified the court’s decision. You determine the right of the parties in the contract itself. You refer to the contract.

And under the order of May 24, 1954, the easement awarded or secured by the lower court to the plaintiffs was strictly a personal one.

The right acquired by plaintiffs Genoveva was a personal servitude under Article 614 of the CC and not a (real) predial servitude that inures to the benefit of whoever owns the dominant estate.

Antonio’s resistance was not defiance against the March 11, 1954 decision which is no longer subsisting, nor the order of May 24, 1954, since the successor in interest, the DBP and Mrs. Arcilla, had no right thereunder.

Another evidence it was a personal servitude: no compensation to Antonio Legaspi the respondent-appellant.

Class comments: The remedy is to first negotiate. If no meeting of the minds, she has to the demand and prove the necessity and all requisites are present.

SC Decision: Wherefore, the order of the lower court dated March 11, 1960 finding the respondent-appellant guilty of contempt is hereby reversed, without pronouncement as to costs .

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