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Anselma Diaz v. IAC and Felisa Pamuti Jardin GR No.

L-66574 (150 SCRA 645) June 17, 1987 Paras, J. Nature: Petition for Review Doctrine: Right of Representation is admitted only within the legitimate family Facts: Felisa is a niece of Simona who together with Felisas mother Juliana were the only legitimate children of spouses Felipe and Petronilla; Juliana married Simon and out of their union were born Felisa and another child who died during infancy; Simona is the widow of Pascual and mother of Pablo; Pablo was the only legitimate son of his parents Pascual and Simona; Pascual died in 1970; Pablo in 1973 and Simona in 1976; Pablo at the time of his death was survived by his mother Simona and six minor natural children: four minor children with Anselma Diaz and two minor children with Felixberta. 1976 Judge Jose Raval declared Felisa as the sole legitimate heir of Simona Petitioners Anselma and Felixberta as guardians of their minor children file for opposition and motion to exclude Felisa from further taking part or intervening in the settlement of the intestate estate of Simona 1980 Judge Bleza issued an order excluding Felisa from further taking part or intervening and declared her to be not an heir of Simona Felisas motion for recon was denied, and she filed her appeal to the Intermediate Appellate Court declaring her as the sole heir of Simona Issue: Who are the legal heirs of Simona, her niece Felisa or her grandchildren (the natural children of Pablo)? Felisa Ruling: The 6 minor children cannot represent their father Pablo in the succession of the latter to the intestate estate of his legitimate mother Simona because of the barrier provided for under Art. 992 of the Civil Code o Art 992. An illegitimate child has no right to inherit ab intestato from the legitimate children and relatives of his father or mother; nor shall such children or relatives inherit in the same manner from the illegitimate child. Pablo is a legitimate child. However, his 6 minor children are illegitimate. Art 992 provides a barrier or iron curtain in that it prohibits absolutely a succession ab intestate between the illegitimate child and the legitimate children and relatives of the father or mother of said legitimate child. They may have a natural tie of blood, but this is not recognized by law for the purposes of Art. 992. JBL Reyes reflections on this which also finds full support from other civilists: o In the Spanish Civil Code of 1989, the right of representation was admitted only within the legitimate family. o An illegitimate child cannot inherit ab intestate from the legitimate children and relatives of his father and mother.

The Civil Code of the Philippines adhered to this principle since it reproduced Art 943 in its own Art 992, but with fine inconsistency in subsequent articles (990, 995, 998) which allows the hereditary portion of the illegitimate child to pass to his own descendants, whether legitimate or illegitimate.