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National Housing Authority v Allarde Facts: Private respondent Rufino Mateo had lived in the disputed lots since

his birth in 1928. In 1959, he started farming and working on a six-hectare portion of said lots, after the death of his father who had cultivated a thirteen-hectare portion of the same lots. On September 1, 1983, the National Housing Authority notified the respondent spouses of the scheduled development of the Tala Estate including the lots in question, warning them that it would not be responsible for any damage which may be caused to the crops planted on the said lots. In 1989, private respondent Rufino Mateo filed with the Department of Agrarian Reform a petition for the award to them of subject disputed lots under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). In January 1992, petitioner caused the bulldozing of the ricefields of private respondents, damaging the dikes and irrigations thereon, in the process. On March 18, 1992, the respondent spouses, relying on their claim that subject lots are agricultural land within the coverage of the CARP, brought before the respondent Regional Trial Court a complaint for damages with prayer for a writ of preliminary injunction, to enjoin the petitioner from bulldozing further and making constructions on the lots under controversy. Petitioner contended that the said lots which were previously reserved by Proclamation No. 843 for housing and resettlement purposes are not covered by the CARP as they are not agricultural lands within the definition and contemplation of Section 3 (c) of R. A. No. 6657. The RTC issued the writ. Issue: Whether or not the disputed land is covered by CARP Held: Lands reserved for, or converted to, non-agricultural uses by government agencies other than the Department of Agrarian Reform, prior to the effectivity of Republic Act No. 6657 are not considered and treated as agricultural lands and therefore, outside the ambit of said law. Thus, since as early as April 26, 1971, the Tala Estate was reserved, inter alia under Presidential Proclamation No. 843, for the housing program of the National Housing Authority, the same has been categorized as not being devoted to the agricultural activity contemplated by Section 3 (c) of R.A. No. 6657, and is, therefore, outside the coverage of the CARL.

Isidro v CA Facts: Private respondent Natividad Gutierrez is the owner of the subject parcel of land. In 1985, Aniceta Garcia, sister of private respondent and also the overseer of the latter, allowed petitioner Remigio Isidro to occupy the swampy portion of the land. The occupancy of a portion of said land was subject to the condition that petitioner would vacate the land upon demand. Petitioner occupied the land without paying any rental and converted the same into a fishpond. In 1990, private respondent through the overseer demanded from petitioner the return of the land, but the latter refused to vacate and return possession of said land, claiming that he had spent effort and invested capital in converting the same into a fishpond. A complaint for unlawful detainer was filed by private respondent against petitioner before the Municipal Trial Court (MTC) of Gapan, Nueva Ecija. The trial court dismissed the case because it ruled that it is an agrarian dispute, hence not cognizable by civil courts. Private respondent appealed to the RTC which affirmed in toto the decision of MTC. On appeal to the CA, the decision of the trial court was reversed. Issue: Whether or not the case is an agrarian dispute and hence not cognizable by civil courts Held: No. A case involving an agricultural land does not automatically make such case an agrarian dispute upon which the DARAB has jurisdiction. The mere fact that the land is agricultural does not ipso facto make the possessor an agricultural lessee of tenant. The law provides for conditions or requisites before he can qualify as one and the land being agricultural is only one of them. The law states that an agrarian dispute must be a controversy relating to a tenurial arrangement over lands devoted to agriculture. And as previously mentioned, such arrangement may be leasehold, tenancy or stewardship. Tenancy is not a purely factual relationship dependent on what the alleged tenant does upon the land. It is also a legal relationship. The intent of the parties, the understanding when the farmer is installed, and their written agreements, provided these are complied with and are not contrary to law, are even more important.

Suplico v CA Facts: Isabel Tupas leased her landholding for the amount of P10, 000.00 to petitioner Enrique P. Suplico, her brother-in-law, under a contract that was set to expire on 31 May 1982. Some time in 1979, respondent Armada started tilling an area of 32,945 square meter of the farmland under an agreement with Enrique Suplico. Petitioner was to receive from the respondent 62 cavans from the palay harvest per crop yield by way of rental for the use not only of the land but also of the work animals and a hand tractor. Private respondent resided with his family in a farmhouse on the land. When, years later, petitioner threatened to eject respondent from the property, the respondent initiated an action for damages and injunction against petitioner in the Court of Agrarian Relations.The complaint averred that respondent was the tenant-farmer of around 2.5 hectares of the property of Isabel Tupas having been instituted as such tenant in 1979 by her administrator, herein petitioner Enrique Suplico, to whom he religiously paid the fixed rental of 62 cavans of palay per crop yield. On 18 January 1990, the trial court rendered its decision declaring private respondent a bona fide agricultural lessee. On appeal, the decision of the trial court was affirmed by the CA. Issue: Whether or not respondent is a tenant of the subject land Held: Tenancy did exist between the parties. Firstly, private respondent was in actual possession of the land, and he there resided, with his family, in a farmhouse just like what a farm tenant normally would. Secondly, private respondent and his wife were personally doing the farm work of plowing, planting, weeding and harvesting the area. The occasional and temporary hiring of persons outside of the immediate household, so long as the tenant himself had control in the farmwork, was not essentially opposed to the status of tenancy. Thirdly, the management of the farm was left entirely to private respondent who defrayed the cultivation expenses. Fourthly, private respondent shared the harvest of the land, depositing or delivering to petitioner Enrique Suplico the agreed 62 cavans of palay per crop yield.

Bejasa v CA Facts: On September 21, 1984, Candelaria constituted respondent Jaime Dinglasan as her attorney-in-fact, having powers of administration over the disputed land. On October 26, 1984, Candelaria entered into a new lease contract over the land with Victoria Dinglasan, Jaimes wife with a term of one year. On December 30, 1984, the Bejasas agreed to pay Victoria rent of P15, 000.00 in consideration of an "aryenduhan" or "pakyaw na bunga" agreement, with a term of one year. After the aryenduhan expired, despite Victorias demand to vacate the land, the Bejasas continued to stay on the land and did not give any consideration for its use, be it in the form of rent or a shared harvest. On February 15, 1988, the Bejasas filed with the Regional Trial Court of Calapan, Oriental Mindoro a complaint for confirmation of leasehold and home lot with recovery of damages against Isabel Candelaria and Jaime Dinglasan, amd the trial court ruled in favour of the Bejasas. On appeal, the CA reversed the decision of the trial court. Issue: Whether or not there is tenancy relationship between the owner and the Bejasas Held: The elements of a tenancy relationship are: (1) the parties are the landowner and the tenant; (2) the subject is agricultural land; (3) there is consent; (4) the purpose is agricultural production; (5) there is personal cultivation; and (6) there is sharing of harvests. Candelaria and the Bejasas, between them, there is no tenancy relationship. Candelaria as landowner never gave her consent. Even assuming that the Dinglasans had the authority as civil law lessees of the land to bind it in a tenancy agreement, there is no proof that they did.

Almuete v Andres Facts: The subject property was awarded by the then National Resettlement and Rehabilitation Administration (NARRA) to petitioner Rodrigo Almuete. He and his family farmed the subject property peacefully and exclusively for some twenty-two years. On August 17, 1979, an Agrarian Reform Technologist filed a field investigation and inspection report stating that the whereabouts of Rodrigo Almuete, was unknown and that he had waived all his rights as a NARRA settler due to his poor health beyond his control and financial hardship. The technologist also stated therein that the actual occupant of the land is Marcelo Andres since April 1967 to date. Thereafter, a homestead patent was issued in favour of Andres. Marcelo Andres gained control, and took possession, of approximately half of the subject property. Consequently, Rodrigo Almuete and his daughter, Ana Almuete, filed an action for reconveyance and recovery of possession against Marcelo Andres with the Regional Trial Court of Cauayan, Isabela which rendered a decision in favour of Almuete. On appeal, the Court of Appeals declared the decision of the trial court NULL and VOID because the case is an agrarian dispute, hence it falls within the jurisdiction of DARAB. Issue: Whether or not the DARAB has jurisdiction over the case Held: The jurisdiction of the DARAB is limited to cases involving a tenancy relationship between the parties. The following elements are indispensable to establish a tenancy relationship: (1) The parties are the landowner and the tenant or agricultural lessee; (2) The subject matter of the relationship is an agricultural land; (3) There is consent between the parties to the relationship; (4) The purpose of the relationship is to bring about agricultural production; (5) There is personal cultivation on the part of the tenant or agricultural lessee; and (6) The harvest is shared between the landowner and the tenant or agricultural lessee. The Court of Appeals gravely erred when it granted the petition for certiorari and held that the trial court had no jurisdiction over the subject matter of the action between petitioners and respondent since there is no tenancy relationship between them. The action filed by petitioners was cognizable by the regular courts.

Monzanto v Zerna Facts: Spouses Jesus and Teresita Zerna were charged with qualified theft for stealing the coconut harvests from the plantation of petitioner Monzanto. The spouses were the overseer of the land owned by the petitioner. After trial on the merits, the RTC acquitted them of the charge. The total proceeds of the copra sale alleged in the Information were P6, 262.50. However, the awarded amount was only P5, 162.50 which was deposited by private respondents with the barangay secretary on March 2, 1995, after deducting P340 for harvesting cost and P760 for labor cost. Thus, petitioner filed a timely Motion for Reconsideration praying that the remaining sum of P1, 100 be returned to her. In its September 4, 1996 Order, the trial court granted the Motion and ordered private respondents to return the amount of P1, 100.10. On appeal, CA ruled that the trial court had no jurisdiction to order private respondents to pay petitioner the amount of P1, 100 because the dispute involved an agricultural tenancy relationship; the matter fell within the jurisdiction of DARAB. Issue: Whether or not the award of the civil liability in this case is agrarian in nature Held: An agrarian dispute existed between the parties. First, the subject of the dispute between them was the taking of coconuts from the property owned by petitioner. Second, private respondents were the overseers of the property at the time of the taking of the coconuts. A tenurial arrangement exists among herein parties as regards the harvesting of the agricultural products, as shown by the several remittances made by private respondents to petitioner. These are substantiated by receipts. In any event, their being overseers does not foreclose their being also tenants.

Alita v CA Facts: Private respondents' predecessors-in-interest acquired the subject parcel of lands through homestead patent under the provisions of Commonwealth Act No. 141. Private respondents herein are desirous of personally cultivating these lands, but petitioners refuse to vacate, relying on the provisions of P.D. 27 and P.D. 316. On June 18, 1981, private respondents instituted a complaint for the declaration of P.D. 27 and all other Decrees, Letters of Instructions and General Orders issued in connection therewith as inapplicable to lands obtained through homestead law. The RTC dismissed the complaint but on motion for reconsideration it declared that P.D. 27 is not applicable to homestead lands. On appeal to the CA, the decision of the RTC was sustained. Issue: Whether or not lands acquired through homestead law are covered by CARP Held: Petitioners is correct in saying that P.D. 27 decreeing the emancipation of tenants from the bondage of the soil and transferring to them ownership of the land they till is a sweeping social legislation, a remedial measure promulgated pursuant to the social justice precepts of the Constitution. However, such contention cannot be invoked to defeat the very purpose of the enactment of the Public Land Act or Commonwealth Act No. 141. The Philippine Constitution likewise respects the superiority of the homesteaders' rights over the rights of the tenants guaranteed by the Agrarian Reform statute. Provided, that the original homestead grantees or their direct compulsory heirs who still own the original homestead at the time of the approval of this Act shall retain the same areas as long as they continue to cultivate said homestead.

Daez v CA Facts: Eudosia Daez was the owner of a 4.1685-hectare riceland in Barangay Lawa, Meycauayan, Bulacan which was being cultivated by respondents Macario Soriente, Rogelio Macatulad, Apolonio Mediana and Manuel Umali under a system of share-tenancy. The said land was subjected to the Operation Land Transfer Program under Presidential Decree No. 27 as amended by Letter of Instruction Armed with an affidavit, allegedly signed under duress by the respondents, stating that they are not share tenants but hired laborers, Eudosia Daez applied for the exemption of said riceland from coverage of P.D. No. 27 due to non-tenancy as well as for the cancellation of the CLTs issued to private respondents. The application of the petitioner was denied. Exemption of the 4.1685 riceland from coverage by P.D. No. 27 having been finally denied her, Eudosia Daez next filed an application for retention of the same riceland, this time under R.A. No. 6657. The DAR Regional Director allowed Daez to retain the subject land but the DAR Secretary reversed that decision. She appealed to the Office of the President which ruled in her favour. Respondents appealed to the CA which reversed the decision of the Office of the President. Issue: Whether or not the denial of application for exemption under PD 27 would bar an application for retention under RA 6657 Held: The requisites for the grant of an application for exemption from coverage of OLT and those for the grant of an application for the exercise of a landowners right of retention are different. Hence, it is incorrect to posit that an application for exemption and an application for retention are one and the same thing. Being distinct remedies, finality of judgment in one does not preclude the subsequent institution of the other. There was, thus, no procedural impediment to the application filed by Eudosia Daez for the retention of the subject 4.1865-hectare riceland, even after her appeal for exemption of the same land was denied in a decision that became final and executory.

Paris v Alfeche Facts: Petitioner is the registered owner of two parcels of land situated at Paitan, Quezon, Bukidnon. The said parcels are fully tenanted by private respondents herein who are recipients of Emancipation Patents in their names pursuant to Operation Land Transfer under P.D. 27. Petitioner alleged that she owns one of the subject property as original homestead grantee who still owned the same when Republic Act No. 6657 was approved, thus she is entitled to retain the area to the exclusion of her tenants. The Adjudicator a quo rendered a decision in favour of the petitioner but that decision was reversed by DARAB. On appeal to the CA, the appellate court rejected the claim of the petitioner. Issue: Whether or not the original homesteads issued under the public land act are automatically exempted from the operation of land reform Held: Homestead grantees or their direct compulsory heirs can own and retain the original homesteads, only for "as long as they continue to cultivate" them. That parcels of land are covered by homestead patents will not automatically exempt them from the operation of land reform. It is the fact of continued cultivation by the original grantees or their direct compulsory heirs that shall exempt their lands from land reform coverage.

Atlas Fertilizer Corporation v Secretary of DAR Facts: Petitioners Atlas Fertilizer Corporation, Philippine Federation of Fishfarm Producers, Inc. and petitioner-in-intervention Archies Fishpond, Inc. and Arsenio Al. Acuna are engaged in the aquaculture industry utilizing fishponds and prawn farms. They assail Sections 3 (b), 11, 13, 16 (d), 17 and 32 of R.A. 6657, as well as the implementing guidelines and procedures contained in Administrative Order Nos. 8 and 10 Series of 1988 issued by public respondent Secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform as unconstitutional. they contend that R.A. 6657, by including in its coverage, the raising of fish and aquaculture operations including fishponds and prawn ponds, treating them as in the same class or classification as agriculture or farming violates the equal protection clause of the Constitution and is, therefore void. During the debates of the Constitutional Commission, it shows that the intent of the constitutional framers is to exclude industrial lands, to which category lands devoted to aquaculture, fishponds, and fish farms belong. Issue: Whether or not fishponds and prawn ponds are included in the coverage of CARL Held: On February 20, 1995, Republic Act No. 7881 was approved by Congress amending some provisions of RA 6657. The provisions of R.A. No. 7881 expressly state that fishponds and prawn farms are excluded from the coverage of CARL. In view of the foregoing, the question concerning the constitutionality of the assailed provisions has become moot and academic with the passage of R.A. No. 7881.


Republic v CA Facts: Private respondent is the owner of the five parcels of land in issue which have a combined area of approximately 112.0577 hectares situated at Barangay Punta, Municipality of Jala-Jala, Rizal. The tax declarations classified the properties as agricultural. On June 16, 1994, petitioner DAR issued a Notice of Coverage of the subject parcels of land under compulsory acquisition pursuant to Section 7, Chapter II of R.A. 6657. On July 21, 1994, private respondent filed with the DAR Regional Office an application for exemption of the land from agrarian reform. Private respondent alleged that the property should be exempted since it is within the residential and forest conservation zones of the town zoning ordinance of Jala-Jala. On October 19, 1995, the DAR Secretary issued an Order denying the application for exemption of private respondent. On appeal to the CA, the decision of DAR was reversed. Petitioner DAR maintains that the subject properties have already been classified as agricultural based on the tax declarations. Issue: Whether or not the land classification on tax declarations are conclusive Held: There is no law or jurisprudence that holds that the land classification embodied in a tax declaration is conclusive and final, nor would proscribe any further inquiry. Furthermore, the tax declarations are clearly not the sole basis of the classification of a land. In fact, DAR Administrative Order No. 6 lists other documents, aside from tax declarations, that must be submitted when applying for exemption from CARP.


Sta. Rosa Realty Development Corporation v CA Facts: Petitioner Sta. Rosa Realty Development Corporation was the registered owner of two parcels of land with a total area of 254.6 hectares. According to petitioner, the parcels of land are watersheds, which provide clean potable water to the Canlubang community. Petitioner alleged that respondents usurped its rights over the property, thereby destroying the ecosystem. Sometime in December 1985, respondents filed a civil case with the Regional Trial Court seeking an easement of a right of way to and from Barangay Casile. By way of counterclaim, however, petitioner sought the ejectment of private respondents. After the filing of the ejectment cases, respondents petitioned the Department of Agrarian Reform for the compulsory acquisition of the SRRDC property under the CARP. The landholding of SRRDC was placed under compulsory acquisition. Petitioner objected to the compulsory acquisition of the property contending that the area was not appropriate for agricultural purposes. The area was rugged in terrain with slopes of 18% and above and that the occupants of the land were squatters, who were not entitled to any land as beneficiaries. The DARAB ruled against the petitioner. On appeal the CA affirmed the decision of DARAB. Issue: Whether or not the property in question is covered by CARP despite the fact that the entire property formed part of a watershed area prior to the enactment of R. A. No. 6657 Held: Watershed is one of those enumerated by CARP to be exempt from its coverage. We cannot ignore the fact that the disputed parcels of land form a vital part of an area that need to be protected for watershed purposes. The protection of watersheds ensures an adequate supply of water for future generations and the control of flashfloods that not only damage property but cause loss of lives. Protection of watersheds is an intergenerational responsibility that needs to be answered now.


Roman Catholic Archbishop of Caceres v DAR Secretary Facts: Archbishop is the registered owner of several properties in Camarines Sur, with a total area of 268.5668 hectares. Of that land, 249.0236 hectares are planted with rice and corn, while the remaining 19.5432 hectares are planted with coconut trees. In 1985, Archbishop several petitions for exemption of certain properties located in various towns of Camarines Sur from the coverage of Operation Land Transfer under Presidential Decree No. 27. Two of these petitions were denied in an Order dated November 6, 1986, issued by the Regional Director of DAR, Region V, Juanito L. Lorena. Archbishop appealed from the order of the Regional Director contending, inter alia, that they are used for charitable and religious purposes. The appeal was denied by the DAR Secretary. On appeal to the CA, the same was dismissed. Issue: Whether or not the subject lands are exempt from the coverage of CARP Held: Archbishop cannot claim exemption in behalf of the millions of Filipino faithful, as the lands are clearly not exempt under the law. The laws simply speak of the landowner without qualification as to under what title the land is held or what rights to the land the landowner may exercise. There is no distinction made whether the landowner holds naked title only or can exercise all the rights of ownership. Archbishop would have the Court read deeper into the law, to create exceptions that are not stated in PD 27 and RA 6657, and to do so would be to frustrate the revolutionary intent of the law, which is the redistribution of agricultural land for the benefit of landless farmers and farmworkers.


Luz Farms v DAR Secretary Facts: Luz Farms is a corporation engaged in the livestock and poultry business allegedly stands to be adversely affected by the enforcement of Section 3(b), Section 11, Section 13, Section 16(d) and 17 and Section 32 of R.A. No. 6657 and of the Guidelines and Procedures Implementing Production and Profit Sharing under R.A. No. 6657 and the Rules and Regulations Implementing Section 11 thereof. Petitioner prayed that aforesaid laws, guidelines and rules be declared unconstitutional. It argued that Congress in enacting the said law has transcended the mandate of the Constitution in including land devoted to the raising of livestock, poultry and swine in its coverage. Issue: Whether or not lands devoted to livestock and poultry business are included in the coverage of CARL Held: From the discussion of the Constitutional Commission that Section 11 of R.A. 6657 which includes private agricultural lands devoted to commercial livestock, poultry and swineraising in the definition of commercial farms is invalid, to the extent that the aforecited agroindustrial activities are made to be covered by the agrarian reform program of the State. There is simply no reason to include livestock and poultry lands in the coverage of agrarian reform. Sections 3(b), 11, 13 and 32 of R.A. No. 6657 insofar as the inclusion of the raising of livestock, poultry and swine in its coverage as well as the Implementing Rules and Guidelines promulgated in accordance therewith, are hereby DECLARED null and void for being unconstitutional.


Land Bank v CA Facts: Private respondents are landowners whose landholdings were acquired by the DAR and subjected to transfer schemes to qualified beneficiaries under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law. Private respondents questioned the validity of DAR Administrative Order No. 6, Series of 1992 and DAR Administrative Order No. 9, Series of 1990, and sought to compel the DAR to expedite the pending summary administrative proceedings to finally determine the just compensation of their properties, and the Landbank to deposit in cash and bonds the amounts respectively earmarked, reserved and deposited in trust accounts for private respondents, and to allow them to withdraw the same. Petitioner DAR maintained that Administrative Order No. 9 is a valid exercise of its rule-making power pursuant to Section 49 of RA 6657. Moreover, the DAR maintained that the issuance of the Certificate of Deposit by the Landbank was a substantial compliance with Section 16(e) of RA 6657. Issue: Whether or not the opening of trust accounts is a valid payment for just compensation Held: It is very explicit from the provisions of RA 6657 that the deposit must be made only in cash or in LBP bonds. Nowhere does it appear nor can it be inferred that the deposit can be made in any other form. If it were the intention to include a trust account among the valid modes of deposit that should have been made express, or at least, qualifying words ought to have appeared from which it can be fairly deduced that a trust account is allowed. In sum, there is no ambiguity in Section 16(e) of RA 6657 to warrant an expanded construction of the term deposit.


Roxas & Co. Inc. v CA Facts: Petitioner Roxas & Co. is a domestic corporation and is the registered owner of three haciendas, namely, Haciendas Palico, Banilad and Caylaway, all located in the Municipality of Nasugbu, Batangas. On May 6, 1988, petitioner filed with respondent DAR a voluntary offer to sell Hacienda Caylaway pursuant to the provisions of E.O. No. 229. Haciendas Palico and Banilad were later placed under compulsory acquisition by respondent DAR in accordance with the CARL. Petitioner tried to withdraw the VOS of Hacienda Caylaway but the sane was denied. Thereafter, petitioner sought the conversion of the three haciendas from agricultural to other use but the petition was likewise denied. Issue: Whether or not process of land acquisition under CARL should observe due process Held: For a valid implementation of the CAR Program, two notices are required: (1) the Notice of Coverage and letter of invitation to a preliminary conference sent to the landowner, the representatives of the BARC, LBP, farmer beneficiaries and other interested parties; and (2) the Notice of Acquisition sent to the landowner under Section 16 of the CARL. They are steps designed to comply with the requirements of administrative due process. The taking contemplated in Agrarian Reform is not a mere limitation of the use of the land. What is required is the surrender of the title to and physical possession of the said excess and all beneficial rights accruing to the owner in favour of the farmer beneficiary. The Bill of Rights provides that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law. The CARL was not intended to take away property without due process of law. The exercise of the power of eminent domain requires that due process be observed in the taking of private property.


Sigre v CA Facts: Private respondent Gonzales, as co-administratrix of the Estate of Matias Yusay, filed with the Court of Appeals a petition for prohibition and mandamus seeking to prohibit the Land Bank of the Philippines from accepting the leasehold rentals from Ernesto Sigre, and for LBP to turn over to private respondent the rentals previously remitted to it by Sigre. It appears that Ernesto Sigre was private respondents tenant in an irrigated rice land located in Barangay Naga, Pototan, Iloilo. He was previously paying private respondent a lease rental of sixteen cavans per crop or thirty-two cavans per agricultural year. In the agricultural year of 1991-1992, Sigre stopped paying his rentals to private respondent and instead, remitted it to the LBP pursuant to the Department of Agrarian Reforms Memorandum Circular No. 6, Series of 1978, which set the guidelines in the payment of lease rental/partial payment by farmer-beneficiaries under the land transfer program of P.D. No. 27. CA declared that P.D. 27 is unconstitutional in laying down the formula for determining the cost of the land as it sets limitations on the judicial prerogative of determining just compensation. Issue: Whether or not PD 27 is unconstitutional Held: The objection that P.D. 27 is unconstitutional as it sets limitations on the judicial prerogative of determining just compensation is bereft of merit. The determination of just compensation under P.D. No. 27, like in Section 16 (d) of R.A. 6657 or the CARP Law, is not final or conclusive. Clearly from the provisions of the two laws, unless both the landowner and the tenant-farmer accept the valuation of the property by the Barrio Committee on Land Production and the DAR, the parties may bring the dispute to court in order to determine the appropriate amount of compensation, a task unmistakably within the prerogative of the court.


Association of Small Landowners v DAR Secretary Facts: These are 3 cases consolidated questioning the constitutionality of the Agrarian Reform Program. The contention of the petitioners in G.R. No. 79777 is that the provision of RA 6657 regarding the modes of payment of just compensation is unconstitutional insofar as it requires the owners of the expropriated properties to accept just compensation therefor in less than money, which is the only medium of payment allowed. RA 6657 allows the payment of just compensation by means of LBP Bonds, Shares of Stocks in government-owned or controlled corporations, and tax credits. Issue: Whether or not payment of just compensation other than money is allowed Held: It cannot be denied that the traditional medium for the payment of just compensation is money and no other. However, we do not deal here with the traditional exercise of the power of eminent domain. This is not an ordinary expropriation where only a specific property of relatively limited area is sought to be taken by the State from its owner for a specific and perhaps local purpose. What we deal with here is a revolutionary kind of expropriation. Agrarian Reform program will involve not mere millions of pesos. The cost will be tremendous. Considering the vast areas of land subject to expropriation under the laws before us, we estimate that hundreds of billions of pesos will be needed, far more indeed than the amount of P50 billion initially appropriated, which is already staggering as it is by our present standards. Such amount is in fact not even fully available at this time. It is assumed that the framers of the Constitution were aware of this difficulty when they called for agrarian reform as a top priority project of the government. It is a part of this assumption that when they envisioned the expropriation that would be needed, they also intended that the just compensation would have to be paid not in the orthodox way but a less conventional if more practical method.


Land Bank v CA and Jose Pascual Facts: Private respondent Jose Pascual owned three parcels of land located in Guttaran, Cagayan. Pursuant to the Land Reform Program of the Government under PD 27 and EO 228, the Department of Agrarian Reform placed these lands under its Operation Land Transfer. After receiving notice of the decision of the PARAD regarding the value of just compensation, private respondent accepted the valuation. However, when the judgment became final and executory, petitioner LBP as the financing arm in the operation of PD 27 and EO 228 refused to pay thus forcing private respondent to apply for a Writ of Execution with the PARAD which the latter issued on 24 December 1992. Still, petitioner LBP declined to comply with the order. Private respondent filed an action for Mandamus in the Court of Appeals to compel petitioner to pay the valuation determined by the PARAD which the appellate court granted. Issue: Whether or not the LBP can refuse to pay the landowner of the value of just compensation Held: Once the Land Bank agrees with the appraisal of the DAR, which bears the approval of the landowner, it becomes its legal duty to finance the transaction. In the instant case, petitioner participated in the valuation proceedings held in the office of the PARAD through its counsel, Atty. Eduard Javier. It did not appeal the decision of PARAD which became final and executory. As a matter of fact, petitioner even stated in its Petition that it is willing to pay the value determined by the PARAD provided that the farmer beneficiaries concur thereto. These facts sufficiently prove that petitioner LBP agreed with the valuation of the land. The only thing that hindered it from paying the amount was the non-concurrence of the farmer-beneficiary. But as we have already stated, there is no need for such concurrence. Without such obstacle, petitioner can now be compelled to perform its legal duty through the issuance of a writ of mandamus.


Santos v Land Bank Facts: The lands of petitioner were taken by DAR under P.D. No. 27 in 1972. Regional Trial Court, sitting as an Agrarian Court rendered judgment fixing the amount of P49, 241,876.00 to be the just compensation for the irrigated and unirrigated ricelands of the petitioner. A preliminary valuation in the amount of P3, 543,070.66 had in fact been previously released by the Land Bank in cash and bond; thus deducting it from the total amount adjudged, the balance unpaid amounted to P45, 698,805.34 which was ordered by the Regional Trial Court to be paid in accordance with RA 6657. Petitioner claimed that the payment of P41, 128,024.81 in Land Bank Bonds was not acceptable to him and that the said amount should be paid in cash or certified check. Initially, the RTC ruled in favour of the petitioner but on motion for reconsideration it ruled otherwise and declared that the unpaid balance should be paid in accordance with RA 6657. On appeal to the CA, the ruling of the trial court was upheld. Issue: Whether or not the petitioner can refuse the LBP Bonds as payment of just compensation Held: RA 6657 is clear and leaves no doubt as to its interpretation regarding the manner of payment of just compensation. The provision allows the landowner to choose the manner of payment from the list provided therein, but since plaintiff had obviously wanted payment to be made in cash, then the trial court had only to apply Section 18 of R.A. 6657 which provides for the payment of a percentage thereon in cash and the balance in bond.


Estribillo v DAR Facts: Private respondent Hacienda Maria Inc. requested that 527.8308 hectares of its landholdings be placed under the coverage of Operation Land Transfer. Receiving compensation therefor, HMI allowed petitioners and other occupants to cultivate the landholdings so that the same may be covered under Agrarian Reform Program. In 1982, a final survey over the entire area was conducted and approved. From 1984 to 1988, the corresponding TCTs and EPs covering the entire 527.8308 hectares were issued to petitioners, among other persons. In December 1997, HMI filed with RARAD petitions seeking the declaration of erroneous coverage under Presidential Decree No. 27 of 277.5008 hectares of its former landholdings. HMI claimed that said area was not devoted to either rice or corn, that the area was untenanted, and that no compensation was paid therefor. RARAD rendered a decision declaring as void the TCTs and EPs awarded to petitioners because the land covered was not devoted to rice and corn, and neither was there any established tenancy relations between HMI and petitioners. Petitioners appealed to the DARAB which affirmed the RARAD Decision. On appeal to the CA, the same was dismissed. Petitioners contended that the EPs became indefeasible after the expiration of one year from their registration. Issue: Whether or not EPs have become indefeasible one year after their issuance Held: After complying with the procedure in Section 105 of Presidential Decree No. 1529, otherwise known as the Property Registration Decree where the DAR is required to issue the corresponding certificate of title after granting an EP to tenant-farmers who have complied with Presidential Decree No. 27, the TCTs issued to petitioners pursuant to their EPs acquire the same protection accorded to other TCTs. The certificate of title becomes indefeasible and incontrovertible upon the expiration of one year from the date of the issuance of the order for the issuance of the patent. Lands covered by such title may no longer be the subject matter of a cadastral proceeding, nor can it be decreed to another person.


Vda. De Tangub v CA Facts: Rufina Tangub and her husband, Andres, now deceased, filed with the RTC of Lanao del Norte in March, 1988 an agrarian case for damages by reason of their unlawful dispossession, as tenants from the landholding owned by the Spouses Domingo and Eugenia Martil. On August 24, 1988, respondent Judge Felipe G. Javier, Jr. dismissed the complaint declaring that the jurisdiction of the Regional Trial Court over agrarian cases had been transferred to the Department of Agrarian Reform by virtue of Executive Order No. 229. On appeal to the CA, the appellate court agreed with the decision of the RTC. Issue: Whether or not the RTC has jurisdiction over the case Held: The Regional Trial Court of Iligan City was correct in dismissing the case. It being a case concerning the rights of the plaintiffs as tenants on agricultural land, not involving the "special jurisdiction" of said Trial Court acting as a Special Agrarian Court, it clearly came within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the Department of Agrarian Reform, or more particularly, the Agrarian Reform Adjudication Board, established precisely to wield the adjudicatory powers of the Department.


Quismundo v CA Facts: On February 19, 1988, private respondents, as tenants of petitioner, filed a complaint with the trial court praying that their relationship with petitioner be changed from share tenancy to a leasehold system, pursuant to Section 4 of Republic Act No. 3844, as amended. On March 16, 1988, petitioner filed a motion to dismiss on the ground of lack of cause of action since the law that should allegedly govern the relationship of the parties is Act No. 4115, as amended by Commonwealth Act No. 271, and not Republic Act No. 3844, as amended. The trial court denied the motion for lack of merit. On June 18, 1988, petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration of the denial order, invoking as an additional ground the lack of jurisdiction of the court over the case under the authority and by reason of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program. Pending the resolution of said motion for reconsideration, private respondents filed another motion dated November 9, 1988, for the supervision of harvesting. On December 6, 1988, the trial court granted the motion of private respondents and denied petitioner's motion for reconsideration. On appeal, the CA upheld the jurisdiction of the trial court. Issue: Whether or not the trial court has jurisdiction over the case Held: With the enactment of Executive Order No. 229, which took effect on August 29, 1987, the regional trial courts were divested of their general jurisdiction to try agrarian reform matters. The said jurisdiction is now vested in the Department of Agrarian Reform. Thus, the Regional Trial Court of Angeles City, at the time private respondents filed their complaint, was already bereft of authority to act on the same. The allegation of private respondents that their complaint was filed on November 3, 1987, and not on February 13, 1988 is immaterial since as of either date Executive Order No. 229 was already in effect.


Machete v CA Facts: On 21 July 1989 private respondent Celestino Villalon filed a complaint for collection of back rentals and damages before the RTC against petitioners. The complaint alleged that the parties entered into a leasehold agreement with respect to private respondent's landholdings. Petitioners moved to dismiss the complaint on the ground of lack of jurisdiction of the trial court over the subject matter. They contended that the case arose out of or was connected with agrarian relations; hence, the subject matter of the complaint fell squarely within the jurisdiction of the Department of Agrarian Reform. The trial court granted the motion to dismiss. On appeal to the CA, the ruling of the RTC was reversed. Issue: Whether or not the RTC has jurisdiction over the case Held: There exists an agrarian dispute in the case at bench which is exclusively cognizable by the DARAB. The failure of petitioners to pay back rentals pursuant to the leasehold contract with private respondent is an issue which is clearly beyond the legal competence of the trial court to resolve. The doctrine of primary jurisdiction does not warrant a court to arrogate unto itself the authority to resolve a controversy the jurisdiction over which is initially lodged with an administrative body of special competence.


DARAB v CA Facts: Private respondents filed a complaint with the PARAD, praying that they be maintained in the peaceful possession and cultivation of a portion of the land in question. Private respondents alleged that they are farmworkers and occupant-tillers of the land in question and that the portion of the land they were cultivating had been bulldozed at the instance of Federico Balanon and other individuals acting in behalf of the petitioner BSB Construction. On March 10, 1993, the Provincial Adjudicator issued an order enjoining the BSB Construction and all persons representing it to cease and desist from undertaking any further bulldozing and development activities on the property under litigation or from committing such other acts tending to disturb the status quo. On March 12, 1993 petitioners filed a complaint with the DARAB in which the y sought the nullification of the restraining order issued by the PARAD. On May 6, 1993, the DARAB issued a status quo order. On appeal to the CA, the appellate court declared that the DARAB has no jurisdiction to issue SQO. Issue: Whether or not the DARAB can take cognizance of a pending case under PARAD Held: All actions pursued under the exclusive original jurisdiction of the DAR, in accordance with Section 50 of RA 6657, must be commenced in the PARAD of the province where the property is located and that the DARAB only has appellate jurisdiction to review the PARADs orders, decisions and other dispositions. Consequently, the DARAB was not possessed of jurisdiction to take cognizance, in the first instance, of the BEA Case. Neither may the DARAB now claim that it issued the SQO in aid of its appellate jurisdiction, since it recognized, as an original complaint, the BEA Case.


Celendro v CA Facts: Private respondent is the surviving spouse of the late Florencio Guevarra, an awardee under the Homestead Law. Petitioner occupied and tilled two hectares of private respondents property through the latters tolerance, with the express condition that if and when that portion of the land should be needed by private respondent, the latter needed only to demand its return. When the private respondent started to demand, the petitioner requested for extension until finally the former wrote a formal letter of demand. When said demand remained unheeded, a case for unlawful detainer was commenced by private respondent before the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Wao, Lanao del Sur against petitioner. The trial court rendered a decision in favour of the private respondent. On appeal to the RTC, the decision was affirmed. Upon learning of the issuance of a writ of execution, petitioner filed a Petition to Quiet Title before the Provincial Adjudication Board which office rendered a decision granting the petition. Private respondent appealed to the DARAB but the decision was affirmed. When private respondent went to the CA, the decision of DARAB was reversed. Issue: Whether or not the decision of the trial court can be reversed by the DARAB Held: Petitioner cannot question before an administrative body the final decision of the MCTC or the RTC. A final judgment can no longer be reviewed, or in any way modified directly or indirectly, by a higher court, not even by the Supreme Court, much less by any other official, branch or department of Government. This particular injunction against administrative bodies is based on the principle of separation of powers, which presupposes mutual respect by and between the three departments of the government. The DARAB, which is under the Department of Agrarian Reform in the executive branch, must accord due respect to the MCTC and the RTC, which are both instrumentalities of the judiciary.


Centeno v Centeno Facts: The parcels of land owned by private respondent were the subject of an earlier case filed by respondent against petitioners before the DAR for cancellation of certificates of land transfer. In said case, it was established that petitioners, through fraud and misrepresentation, obtained CLTs in their names. The DAR issued an order directing the recall and cancellation of petitioners' CLTs. The aforesaid order was affirmed by the Office of the President in its decision dated July 8, 1987, which had become final and executory. Despite the decision of DAR, petitioners have interfered with and prevented respondent from exercising acts of possession over the landholdings earlier adjudicated to her. This prompted the private respondent to file a complaint with the DARAB for Maintenance of Peaceful Possession with Prayer for Restraining Order/Preliminary Injunction, Ejectment and Damages. A decision was rendered by the Provincial Adjudicator in favour of the respondent which was affirmed by DARAB. On appeal to the CA, the same was affirmed. Petitioners are contending that the DARAB has no jurisdiction over the case. Issue: Whether or not the DARAB has jurisdiction over the case Held: The present case for maintenance of peaceful possession with prayer for restraining order/preliminary injunction is a mere off-shoot of the suit for cancellation of Certificates of Land Transfer (CLTs) filed by herein respondent against herein petitioners before the DARAB. That previous case culminated in a decision upholding respondent's entitlement to an award of the subject landholdings under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law. Since the instant case is related to and is a mere off-shoot of the said previous case for cancellation of CLTs which was decided in favour of herein respondent, the Court believes and so hold that the DAR continues to have jurisdiction over the same.


Ocho v Calos Facts: Respondents, all surnamed Calos, filed a complaint before the Department of Agrarian Reform Provincial Adjudicator entitled Annulment of Deeds of Assignment, Emancipation Patents and Transfer Certificate of Titles, Retention and Recovery of Possession and Ownership against petitioner Ocho and other farmer-beneficiaries on the ground that the original farmerbeneficiaries unlawfully conveyed their respective rights over the lands granted to them to third persons. The Caloses also posited that the subject land was beyond the coverage of the agrarian reform law as the same was covered by a homestead patent. The Provincial Adjudicator

rendered a decision in favour of the respondents. When the case was elevated to the DARAB, the decision of the Provincial Adjudicator was reversed. On appeal to the CA, the decision of DARAB was substantially affirmed except that the appellate court declared that petitioner and Vicente Polinar are not qualified beneficiaries as they are already owners of other agricultural lands. Petitioner contended that the claim of the Caloses that he is owner of three parcels of land which matter was already determined and decided with finality in the Resolution of DAR cannot be subject to review by any court. Issue: Whether or not the findings of DAR regarding qualification of petitioner constitute res judicata Held: Yes. There is no question that the issue of whether petitioner is the owner of other agricultural lands had already been passed upon by the proper quasi-judicial authority. Said decision became final and executory when the Caloses failed to file an appeal thereof after their motion for reconsideration was denied. Applying the rule on conclusiveness of judgment, the issue of whether petitioner is the owner of other agricultural lands may no longer be relitigated.


Gonzales v CA Facts: Petitioner Lilia Y. Gonzales received two Orders from the Regional Office of the Department of Agrarian Reform directing her to surrender the titles to her land and to submit the other requirements of the respondent Land Bank of the Philippines, while the said bank was ordered to pay the petitioner an aggregate amount of P55, 690.74 as compensation for the two parcels of land. On December 20, 1991, the petitioner filed a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition with Temporary Restraining Order with the Court of Appeals to restrain the enforcement and to annul the said two Orders of the DAR Regional Director on the ground of lack or excess of jurisdiction, alleging that the petitioner never filed a land transfer claim and was not notified of nor heard in the execution of the final survey plans and the valuation of her land. The Court of Appeals rendered a Decision dated June 29, 1992, denying due course to, and dismissing the petition for failure of the petitioners to exhaust administrative remedies. Issue: Whether or not the petitioner failed to exhaust administrative remedies Held: The doctrine of exhaustion of administrative remedies is applicable in this case. The proper procedure which the petitioner should have taken is to move for a reconsideration of the orders of the Regional Director, or to go directly to the DARAB, or to its executive adjudicator in the region, the Regional Agrarian Reform Adjudicator. Prior resort to these administrative bodies will not only satisfy the rule on exhaustion of administrative remedies, but may likewise prove advantageous to the parties as the proceedings will be conducted by experts, and will not be limited by the technical rules of procedure and evidence. From there, the petitioner has yet another forum available, the Special Agrarian Courts which are the final determinants of cases involving land valuation or determination of just compensation. Moreover, the petitioner has not obtained any exception to the Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies.


Cabral v CA Facts: On January 16, 1990, petitioner Victoria Cabral filed a petition before the BARC for the cancellation of the Emancipation Patents and Torrens Titles issued in favour of private respondents. The patents and titles covered portions of the property owned and registered in the name of petitioner. On February 11, 1990, Regional Director Eligio Pacis issued an order dismissing the petition for cancellation of Emancipation Patents. The Regional Director likewise denied petitioners motion for reconsideration dated July 11, 1990. Consequently, petitioner filed a petition for certiorari in the Court of Appeals questioning the jurisdiction of the Regional Director and claiming denial of due process. On January 8, 1991, the appellate court dismissed the petition for lack of merit. Issue: Whether or not the Regional Director has jurisdiction to decide on the petition Held: The DAR Regional Office has no jurisdiction over the subject case. It is amply clear from the provisions of CARL and other pertinent rules that the function of the Regional Office concerns the implementation of agrarian reform laws while that of the

DARAB/RARAD/PARAD is the adjudication of agrarian reform cases. The first is essentially executive. It pertains to the enforcement and administration of the laws, carrying them into practical operation and enforcing their due observance. Thus, the Regional Director is primarily tasked with implementing laws, policies, rules and regulations within the responsibility of the agency, as well as the agency program in the region. The second is judicial in nature, involving as it does the determination of rights and obligations of the parties.


Tirona v Alejo Facts: On March 25, 1996, petitioners sued private respondent Luis Nuez before the Metropolitan Trial Court of Valenzuela for ejectment. Petitioners claimed to be owners of various fishpond lots located at Coloong, Valenzuela. They alleged, among others that on January 20, 1996, private respondent Nuez, by means of force, stealth, or strategy, unlawfully entered the said fishpond lots and occupied the same against their will, thereby depriving them of possession of said fishponds. Private respondent raised the defense that the MeTC had no jurisdiction over the case, for petitioners failure to allege prior physical possession in their complaint. The MeTC rendered a decision in favour of the petitioner but in the case of Ignacio the MeTC, the trial court declared otherwise. The two cases were decided jointly in the RTC where the MeTCs declaration regarding the prejudicial question was affirmed. Issue: Whether or not the MeTC has jurisdiction over the case Held: The jurisdiction of a court is determined by the allegations of the complaint, and the rule is no different in actions for ejectment. All that is alleged in the complaint was unlawful deprivation of their possession by private respondents. The deficiency is fatal to petitioners actions before the Metropolitan Trial Court of Valenzuela. Such bare allegation is insufficient for the MeTC to acquire jurisdiction. No reversible error was, therefore, committed by the RTC when it held that the Metropolitan Trial Court acquired no jurisdiction over Civil Cases Nos. 6632 and 6633 for failure of the complaints to aver prior physical possession by petitioners.


Calvo v Vergara Facts: On October 21, 1972, the lots of Milagros Lebumfacil were placed under the Operation Land Transfer program of the Department of Agrarian Reform Presidential Decree No. 27, which deemed the tenant-farmers as owners of the land they till. Due to poor health and senility of the prospective farmer-beneficiaries Baguio and Apan, they waived their rights over the said lots. Consequently, the DAR awarded the lots to the Vergara spouses and to the Basalo spouses. Despite the coverage under the OLT program of the parcels of land, Lebumfacil still sold them on to petitioner spouses Benny and Jovita Calvo. Subsequently, on October 2, 1991, petitioners filed with the Municipal Trial Court of Toledo City a complaint for illegal detainer against private respondents praying for their eviction from their homelots. As the dispute was agrarian in nature, the MTC forwarded the case to the PARAD which declared that the coverage of the subject land under Operation Land Transfer as valid and legal. Petitioners appealed to the DARAB which affirmed the above decision with modification. On appeal to the CA, the decision of DARAB was affirmed. Issue: Whether or not private respondents are tenant-farmers and are thus qualified as reallocates Held: Being a question of fact, it is beyond the office of this court in a petition for review under Rule 45 of the Revised Rules of Court, where only questions of law may be raised. Petitioners, in raising the above issue, is in effect questioning the factual findings of the DARAB, contrary to the doctrine that findings of fact by administrative agencies are generally accorded great respect, if not finality by the courts because of the special knowledge and expertise over matters falling under their jurisdiction.


Nuesa v CA Facts: On May 25, 1972, an Order of Award was issued in favour of Jose Verdillo over two parcels of agricultural land of the Buenavista Estate with the conditions that within a period of six months from receipt of a copy, the awardee shall personally cultivate or otherwise develop at least one-fourth of the area or occupy and construct his/her house in case of residential lot and pay at least the first installment. On August 26, 1993 private respondent filed an application with the Regional Office of the Department of Agrarian Reform for the purchase of said lots claiming that he had complied with the conditions. Petitioner filed a letter of protest against private respondent claiming it is him who had been in possession of the land and had been cultivating the same. On January 24, 1994, petitioner, the Regional Director of DAR, Antonio M. Nuesa, promulgated an Order cancelling the award to private respondent. Respondent sought relief to the Provincial Adjudicator which reversed the decision of the Regional Director. On appeal to the DARAB, the decision of the Provincial Adjudicator was affirmed. The Petition for Review filed by herein petitioners with the Court of Appeals was denied due course and ordered dismissed. Issue: Whether or not the DARAB can take cognizance of the case Held: The revocation by the Regional Director of DAR of the earlier Order of Award by the Secretary of Agriculture falls under the administrative functions of the DAR. The DARAB and its adjudicators acted erroneously and with grave abuse of discretion in taking cognizance of the case. In the case at bar, petitioner and private respondent had no tenurial, leasehold, or any agrarian relations whatsoever that could have brought this controversy between them within the ambit of the definition of agrarian dispute. Consequently, the DARAB had no jurisdiction over the controversy and should not have taken cognizance of private respondents petition in the first place.


Sarne v Maquiling Facts: On February 17, 1998, private respondents filed a complaint for redemption and damages against petitioners before the Office of the Provincial Adjudicator, Dumaguete City. In their complaint, they alleged that as tenants of the subject parcel of land, they have the right of preemption and redemption pursuant to Sections 11 and 12 of R.A. No. 3844 otherwise known as the Code of Agrarian Reform. The Adjudicator ruled in favour of the respondents. Petitioners alleged that the Adjudicator has no jurisdiction because the land in question was not under the administration and disposition of the Department of Agrarian Reform and the Land Bank of the Philippines. On appeal to the CA, the jurisdiction of DARAB was upheld. Issue: Whether or not the DARAB has jurisdiction over the case Held: It is clear that the jurisdiction of the DARAB in this case is anchored on Section 1, paragraph (e), Rule II of the DARAB New Rules of Procedure covering agrarian disputes involving the sale, alienation, mortgage, foreclosure, pre-emption and redemption of agricultural lands under the coverage of the CARP or other agrarian laws. There is nothing in the provision from which it can be inferred that the jurisdiction of the DARAB is limited only to agricultural lands under the administration and disposition of DAR and LBP. We should not distinguish where the law does not distinguish.


DAR v Abdulwahid Facts: On December 28, 2000, Yupangco Cotton Mills, Inc. filed with the RTC a complaint for Recovery of Ownership and Possession, Violations of R.A. Nos. 6657 and 3844 as amended, Cancellation of Title, Reconveyance and Damages with Prayer for the Issuance of Preliminary Mandatory Injunction and/or Temporary Restraining Order against Buenavista Yupangco Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Association, Inc., the DAR and the Land Bank of the Philippines. DAR filed a Motion to Dismiss on the grounds that Yupangcos causes of action were not within the jurisdiction of the RTC. RTC denied the motion. On appeal to the CA, the appellate court sustained the RTC. Issue: Whether or not the RTC has jurisdiction over the case Held: The complaint in the petition at bar seeks for the RTC to cancel Certificates of Land Ownership Awards issued to the beneficiaries and the Transfer Certificates of Title issued pursuant thereto. These are reliefs which the RTC cannot grant, since the complaint essentially prays for the annulment of the coverage of the disputed property within the CARP, which is but an incident involving the implementation of the CARP. These are matters relating to terms and conditions of transfer of ownership from landlord to agrarian reform beneficiaries over which DARAB has primary and exclusive original jurisdiction. If the issues between the parties are intertwined with the resolution of an issue within the exclusive jurisdiction of the DARAB, such dispute must be addressed and resolved by the DARAB.


Philippine Veterans Bank v CA Facts: Petitioner Philippine Veterans Bank owned four parcels of land in Tagum, Davao. The lands were taken by the DAR for distribution to landless farmers pursuant to R.A. No. 6657. Dissatisfied with the valuation of the land made by respondents Land Bank of the Philippines and the DARAB, petitioner filed a petition for a determination of the just compensation for its property with the RTC which dismissed the petition on the ground that it was filed beyond the 15-day reglementary period for filing appeals from the orders of the DARAB. Issue: Whether or not the petitioner can still appeal after the 15-day period for filing appeals Held: Rule XIII, Section 11 of the DARAB Rules of Procedure provides that the decision of the Adjudicator on land valuation and preliminary determination and payment of just compensation shall not be appealable to the Board but shall be brought directly to the Regional Trial Courts designated as Special Agrarian Courts within fifteen (15) days from receipt of the notice thereof. The petition in the RTC was filed beyond the 15-day period provided in Rule XIII, Section 11 of the Rules of Procedure of the DARAB, the trial court correctly dismissed the case.


Samahang Magbubukid ng Kapdula Inc. v CA Facts: The members of petitioner Samahang Magbubukid Ng Kapdula, Inc. were the tenants on the two parcels of land formerly owned by Macario Aro. When Mr. Aro sold the said parcels of land to Arrow Head Golf Club, Inc., the members of petitioner were evicted. The parcels of land were later leased to the spouses, Ruben Rodriguez and Gloria Bugagao and were then developed into a sugarcane plantation, with private respondents as the regular farmworkers. The same property was acquired by the Philippine National Bank at a Sheriffs auction sale. The ownership of subject parcels of land was later transferred to the Asset Privatization Trust which conveyed the same to the Republic of the Philippines. On March 26, 1991, in furtherance of its objective of instituting agrarian reform in the country, the DAR issued Certificate of Land Ownership for the said parcels of land in favour of the petitioner. Private respondents filed a petition for certiorari on CA which ordered the respondent DAR to conduct a hearing, with due notice to the herein petitioners, to determine the rightful beneficiaries of the subject parcels of land in accordance with R.A. No. 6657. Issue: Whether or not there was a need for the private respondents to exhaust administrative remedies before filing their petition for certiorari with the Court of Appeals Held: Time and again, the Court has ruled that in cases of denial of due process, exhaustion of available administrative remedies is unnecessary. Records show that the letter which was supposed to be the notice to the private respondents regarding the inclusion of subject properties in the CARP was ineffective. There is thus a need for further hearings to determine the beneficiaries of subject parcels of land. In such hearings, the private respondents, who were deprived of an opportunity to be heard before the DAR, should participate.


Greenfield Realty Corporation v Cardama Facts: Private respondents filed with the Provincial Adjudicator of Sta. Cruz, Laguna against Independent Realty Corporation, among others. Respondents claimed to have already been issued their respective Certificates of Land Transfer pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 27 which took effect on October 21, 1972, thus subject landholdings can no longer be covered by the CARP law. Respondents also claimed to have succeeded their father who died on January 9, 1989 in the latters tenancy rights, and should be declared now as leasehold tenants and actual tillers of the subject irrigated riceland. Judgment was rendered in favour of the private respondents by the Provincial Adjudicator. On appeal to the DARAB, it was declared that the respondents are not bona fide tenant of the subject property. When the case was brought to the CA, the decision of the Provincial Adjudicator was reinstated. Issue: Whether or not the decision of the DARAB is based on substantial evidence and thus should become final and conclusive upon the court Held: Substantial evidence is such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion. Even if we consider that the evidence presented is relevant, they are not adequate to support the conclusion reached by the DARAB. On the other hand, the records of the case are replete with relevant evidences which are adequate to support the conclusion that Hermogenes Cardama is the bona fide tenant of the subject property. Thus, the evidences on which DARAB based its decision are not relevant and adequate to support its conclusion.


Bernarte v CA Facts: On October 5, 1989, Estrella Arastia filed a complaint for violation of Section 73 (b) of RA 6657 before the RTC in its capacity as a Special Agrarian Court. The complaint alleged that petitioners illegally intruded into the land of Arastia, burned the existing sugarcane plants and started to cultivate small portions thereof. Petitioner moved for the dismissal of the complaint on the ground that the trial court had no jurisdiction as it was the DARAB, pursuant to Section 50 of RA 6657, which had jurisdiction over the case. The motion was dismissed by the RTC. Meanwhile a writ of preliminary injunction to enjoin Arastia from preventing their re-entry and re-occupation of the landholdings pending the resolution of the case was also obtained by petitioners from DARAB. When the petitioners were arrested by the police officers for their refusal to leave the property, and was thereafter criminally charged, they asserted that the preliminary injunction obtained by them in the DARAB was the one valid since the trial court has no jurisdiction over the case. Issue: Whether or not the RTC has jurisdiction over the case Held: Jurisdiction over the subject-matter is determined upon the allegations made in the complaint. Petitioners raising the issue of jurisdiction in their answer to the complaint did not automatically divest the lower court of jurisdiction over agrarian case filed by Arastia. The court had to continue exercising authority to hear the evidence for the purpose of determining whether or not it had jurisdiction over the case. It should be pointed out that in filing the case, Estrella Arastia was merely ejecting petitioners from the land on the ground that no tenancy relationship existed between them. However, her invocation of Sec. 73 (b) of Republic Act No. 6657 which considers as a prohibited act forcible entry or illegal detainer by persons who are not qualified beneficiaries under this Act to avail themselves of the rights and benefits of the Agrarian Reform Program, obviously led the court to docket the case as Agrarian Case No. 2000 and assume jurisdiction over it as a special agrarian court.


Land Bank v De Leon Facts: Respondent spouses Arlene and Bernardo de Leon filed a petition to fix the just compensation of a parcel of land before the RTC of Tarlac acting as a Special Agrarian Court. On December 19, 1997, the agrarian court rendered summary judgment fixing the compensation of the subject property. The DAR and LBP both filed separate appeals using different modes. DAR filed a petition for review while LBP interposed an ordinary appeal by filing a notice of appeal. The appeal by the DAR was given due course, while that of the LBP was dismissed on the ground that LBP availed of the wrong mode of appeal. Issue: Whether or not an ordinary appeal was the proper mode to appeal the decision of the RTC regarding just compensation Held: On account of the absence of jurisprudence interpreting Sections 60 and 61 of RA 6657 regarding the proper way to appeal decisions of Special Agrarian Courts as well as the conflicting decisions of the Court of Appeals thereon, LBP cannot be blamed for availing of the wrong mode. Based on its own interpretation and reliance on a ruling of the CA regarding the same issue, LBP acted on the mistaken belief that an ordinary appeal is the appropriate manner to question decisions of Special Agrarian Courts. While the Court holds that petition for review is the proper mode of appeal from judgments of Special Agrarian Courts, and such is a rule of procedure which affects substantive rights, it should not be applied to the case of LBP since this case was still pending when said doctrine was decreed.


Laurel vs. Garcia Facts: These are two petitions for prohibition seeking to enjoin respondents, their representatives and agents from proceeding with the bidding for the sale of the 3,179 square meters of land at 306 Roppongi, 5-Chome Minato-ku Tokyo, Japan scheduled on February 21, 1990 or the Roppongi property acquired by the Government from Japan. Laurel states that the Roppongi property is classified as one of public dominion, and not of private ownership under Article 420 of the Civil Code. He states that being one of public dominion, no ownership by anyone can attach to it, not even by the State. Hence, it cannot be appropriated, as it is outside the commerce of man. The respondents refute the petitioner's contention by saying that the subject property has ceased to become property of public dominion. It has become patrimonial property because it has not been used for public service or for diplomatic purposes for over thirteen years now and because the intention by the Executive Department and the Congress to convert it to private use has been manifested by overt acts, one of which is the enactment by the Congress RA 6657 which contains a provision stating that funds may be taken from the sale of Philippine properties in foreign countries Issue: Whether or not the Roponggi property can be alienated and sold for funding purposes of the CARP in accordance with Section 63[C] of RA6657? Held: No. Section 63 (c) of Rep. Act No. 6657 which provides as one of the sources of funds for its implementation, the proceeds of the disposition of the properties of the Government in foreign countries, did not withdraw the Roppongi property from being classified as one of public dominion when it mentions Philippine properties abroad. Section 63 (c) refers to properties which are alienable and not to those reserved for public use or service. Rep Act No. 6657, therefore, does not authorize the Executive Department to sell the Roppongi property. It merely enumerates possible sources of future funding to augment the Agrarian Reform Fund created under Executive Order No. 299. Obviously any property outside of the commerce of man cannot be tapped as a source of funds.

Rovillos v CA Facts: Sometime in 1971, petitioner's predecessor started tilling and cultivating a portion of private respondent's land under a share-crop agreement. On December 30, 1979, petitioner and the private respondent entered into a contract which stipulated that the former was to be contracted as a farm laborer or helper responsible for the cultivation of two hectares of the four hectare land. When petitioner no longer cultivated the land in question in his capacity as a farm laborer but as a tenant, with the corresponding right to exclude the private respondent from the land, private respondent demanded from the petitioner to desist from further cultivation of the said land. These demands proved futile. Private respondent then filed a complaint against the petitioner for Recovery of Possession with Damages with Motion for Issuance of Writ of Preliminary Injunction. On February 20, 1991, the trial court rendered its decision finding that petitioner was not a tenant but a mere farm helper or laborer of the private respondent. The decision of the RTC was affirmed by CA. Issue: Whether or not RA 6657 has repealed the provisions of PD 27 Held: The Supreme Court pointed out that the land in question is covered by Presidential Decree No. 27, which, incidentally has not yet been repealed by Republic Act No. 6657. The provisions of PD 27 shall have a suppletory effect.


Reyes v Reyes Facts: On April 22, 1991, Dionisia Reyes filed a complaint for reinstatement with DARAB against private respondents, her four younger brothers. She alleged that her father, the late Felizardo Reyes, was the tenant of a two-hectare agricultural lot owned by Marciano Castro. After her fathers death, she and Marciano Castro executed a leasehold contract naming her as the agricultural lessee of the property. However, sometime before the start of the planting of the dry season crop in 1989, respondents forcibly entered the area and occupied a one-hectare portion of the property. They claimed to be the tenants thereof. Respondents then paid rent to the Castros overseer and continued to occupy half of the property to petitioners damage and prejudice. Respondents denied Dionisias claim that she was the bona fide leasehold tenant. They claimed that they inherited the lease rights to the property from their deceased father. They likewise averred that they were the ones actually cultivating the portion occupied by them. Hence, petitioners claim to be the lawful agricultural lessee had no basis, either in fact or in law. Issues: Whether or not the RA 6657 has suppletory character with that of RA 3844 insofar as the determination of leasehold agreement is concern? Held: The present dispute involves an agricultural leasehold. The governing law is R.A. No. 3844, which, except for Section 35 thereof, was not specifically repealed by the passage of the R.A. No. 6657, but was intended to have suppletory effect to the latter law. Under R.A. 3844, two modes are provided for in the establishment of an agricultural leasehold relation: (1) by operation of law in accordance with Section 4 of the said act or (2) by oral or written agreement, either express or implied. By operation of law simply means the abolition of the agricultural share tenancy system and the conversion of share tenancy relations into leasehold relations. The other method is the agricultural leasehold contract, which may either be oral or in writing. In the instant case, it is not disputed that an agricultural leasehold contract was entered into between petitioner and Ramon Castro.