G.R. No. L-2474, 30 May 1951
Mariano Andal, a minor, assisted by his mother Maria Duenas, filed a complaint for the recovery of the ownership and possession of a parcel of land owned by Emiliano Andal and Maria Duenas. EduvigisMacaraig, herein defendant, donated the land by virtue of donation propter nuptias in favor of Emiliano. The latter was suffering from tuberculosis in January 1941. His brother, Felix, then lived with them to work his house and farm. Emiliano became so weak that he can hardly move and get up from his bed. Sometime in September 1942, the wife eloped with Felix and lived at the house of Maria’s father until 1943. Emiliano died in January 1, 1943 where the wife did not attend the funeral. On June 17, 1943, Maria gave birth to a boy who was, herein petitioner.
WON Mariano Andal is a legitimate child of the deceased.
Considering that Mariano was born on June 17, 1943 and Emiliano died on January 1, 1943, the former is presumed to be a legitimate son of the latter because he was born within 300 days following the dissolution of the marriage. The fact that the husband was seriously sick is not sufficient to overcome the presumption of legitimacy. This presumption can only be rebutted by proof that it was physically impossible for the husband to have had access to his wife during the first 120 days of the 300 days next preceding the birth of the child. Impossibility of access by husband to wife includes absence during the initial period of conception, impotence which is patent, and incurable; and imprisonment unless it can be shown that cohabitation took place through corrupt violation of prison regulations. Maria’s illicit intercourse with a man other than the husband during the initial period does not preclude cohabitation between husband and wife.
Hence, Mariano Andal was considered a legitimate son of the deceased making him the owner of the parcel land.
* Case digest by Mary Jade L. Capin, LLB-1, Andres Bonifacio Law School, SY 2017-2018