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Acaylar v Harayo

Distinction between forcible entry and unlawful detainer


Facts:
1. Respondent filed a complaint before the MTC for forcible entry against Petitioner.
a. Respondent alleges:
i. That he is the owner of a 30,000sqm subject property in Dapitan City,
evidenced by a deed of sale executed by Petitioners parents.
ii. That Petitioner, using strategy, intimidation, threats, and stealth entered
the subject property, cut the grass, pastured his cows, and gathered the
fallen coconuts and other fruits.
b. Petitioner answers
i. The property claimed by Respondent is only a portion of a 59,775sqm
property that he is in possession and administers. Respondent cannot
definitively claim which portion of it since it was not clearly delineated.
ii. That he, together with his sisters, already filed an action for the
annulment of deed of sale against Respondent.
c. At the pre-trial conference, parties stipulated that only 30,000sqm was sold to
Respondents and that there is a pending case. One of the evidence presented was
an affidavit by Petitioners mother which attests that she sold the subject property
to Respondent and that she prohibits her son from administering it or entering it.
d. MTC ruled IFO Respondent.
2. RTC affirmed MTC. Petitioners parents merely tolerated his presence in the property.
a. Banking on a second affidavit by his mother which renounced her first affidavit,
Petitioner moved to MR
b. RTC denied MR
3. Petitioner moved for review on certiorari before the CA. CA dismissed the petition, citing
that petition for review under R42 should have been filed instead of this petition, and
other procedural lapses.
4. Hence, this petition.
Issue: W/N the forcible entry case is proper
Held: No. Respondent has no cause of action against petitioner.
Ratio:
SC agreed with CA for procedural lapses on part of Petitioner, but looked this over in the
interest of justice.
Under R71 S1, there are two distinct causes of action:
1. Forcible entry an action to recover possession of a property from defendant whose
occupation thereof is illegal from the beginning as he acquired possession by force,
intimidation, threat, strategy or stealth

2. Unlawful detainer - an action for recovery of possession from defendant whose


possession of the property was inceptively lawful by virtue of a contract
Distinctions:
UNLAWFUL DETAINER
Plaintiff need not have been in prior physical
possession

FORCIBLE ENTRY
Plaintiff must prove that he was in prior
physical possession of the property until he
was deprived by defendant

The possession of the defendant is inceptively


lawful but it becomes illegal by reason of the
termination of his right to the possession of
the property under his contract with the
plaintiff

The possession of the land by the defendant


is unlawful from the beginning as he acquires
possession thereof by force, intimidation,
threat, strategy or stealth

Plaintiff must make the demand to vacate

The law does not require a previous demand


for the defendant to vacate the premises

The most important distinction is the nature of defendants entry into the subject property. In
this case, Respondent filed forcible entry because he was in prior possession of the property as
he immediately took possession of it after the deed of sale. Petitioner counters that he is in
possession of it since 1979, having built his house thereon, that it was impossible for him to
unlawfully enter as he was already occupying it.
The fact of prior physical possession is indispensable in forcible entry cases. Plaintiff cannot
succeed if there is a showing that the defendant is in possession of it before he did. Such fact
must be looked into by the SC, and since there are conflicting rulings, SC reviews the facts.
MTC relies on the first affidavit of Petitioners mother. From the first affidavit, it would appear
that Petitioner was never in possession of the subject property. However, the RTC found that
Petitioner is already in possession of it but was merely tolerated by his parents.
SC said that Petitioner is indeed in possession of the property prior to Respondents possession,
if any. Even if SC were to look into the first affidavit, it was never claimed that petitioner
unlawfully or illegally entered her property when he built his house thereon. Respondents sole
assertion that he immediately took possession of the property after buying it lacks clear
evidentiary support.
The conflicting Affidavits of Petitioners mother, notwithstanding, SC finds that petitioner was
in peaceful possession of the subject property prior to its sale to respondent. There is no
showing that either Petitioners mother or Respondent made a demand on Petitioner to vacate
the subject property. In the absence of an oral or written demand, petitioners possession of the
subject property has yet to become unlawful.