G.R. No. L-42636, 1 August 1985, 138 SCRA 1
Spouses Africa V. Reynoso and Jose L, Reynoso sold to petitioners several others, a parcel of land. The Deed of Sale contained a covenant against eviction. On April 21, 1961, the Register of Deeds of Rizal and A. Doronilla Resources Development, Inc. filed a case before the CFI of Rizal for the cancellation of the OCT issued in the name of Angelina Reynoso (predecessor-in-interest of private respondents-vendors) on the ground that the property covered by said title is already previously registered under a TCT issued in the name of A. Doronilla Development, Inc. In that case, an order was issued declaring the OCT null and void.
Petitioners, spouses Maria de Leon Escaler and Ernesto Escaler and spouses Cecilia J. Roxas and Pedro Roxas, filed a civil case against their vendors, herein private respondents, spouses Jose L. Reynoso and Africa Reynoso for the recovery of the value of the property sold to them plus damages on the ground that the latter have violated the vendors’ “warranty against eviction.”
The CFI rendered a judgment ordering the return to the plaintiffs Maria Luisa de Leon Escaler and Ernesto Escaler, Cecilia J. Roxas and Pedro Roxas, the value of the property sold to them at the time of eviction. The CA reversed this decision and ruled that petitioners, as vendees, had not given private respondents-vendors, formal notice of the eviction case as mandated by Arts. 1558 and 1559 of the New Civil Code.
Whether or not a vendor‘s liability for eviction may be enforced in the case at bar.
The petition is devoid of merit. Consequently, it must be dismissed.
Article 1548, in relation to Articles 1558. and 1559 of the New Civil Code reads as follows:Art. 1548, Eviction shall take place whenever by a final judgment based on a right prior to the sale or an act imputable to the vendor, the vendee is deprived of the whole or of a part of the thing purchased. The vendor shall answer for the eviction even though nothing has been said in the contract on the subject. The contracting parties, however, may increase, diminish, or suppress this legal obligation of the vendor. Art. 1558. The vendor shall not be obliged to make good the proper warranty, unless he is summoned in the suit for eviction at the instance of the vendee. (emphasis supplied) Art. 1559. The defendant vendee shall ask, within the time fixed in the Rules of Court for answering the complaint that the vendor be made as co-defendant.
In order that a vendor’s liability for eviction may be enforced, the following requisites must concur—a) there must be a final judgment; b) the purchaser has been deprived of the whole or part of the thing sold; c) said deprivation was by virtue of a right prior to the sale made by the vendor; and d) the vendor has been summoned and made co-defendant in the suit for eviction at the instance of the vendee.
In the case at bar, the fourth requisite—that of being summoned in the suit for eviction (Case No. 4252) at the instance of the vendee—is not present. All that the petitioners did, per their very admission, was to furnish respondents, by registered mail, with a copy of the opposition they (petitioners filed in the eviction suit. Decidedly, this is not the kind of notice prescribed by the aforequoted Articles 1558 and 1559 of the New Civil Code. The term “unless he is summoned in the suit for eviction at the instance of the vendee” means that the respondents as vendor/s should be made parties to the suit at the instance of petitioners-vendees, either by way of asking that the former be made a co-defendant or by the filing of a third-party complaint against said vendors. Nothing of that sort appeared to have been done by the petitioners in the instant case.
*Case digest by Krishianne Louise C. Labiano, JD – 4, Andres Bonifacio College, SY 2019 – 2020