CD: JRA Philippines, Inc. v. CIR

October 29, 2010 at 4:16 pm (2010, Case Digests) (, , )

J.R.A. PHILIPPINES, INC. v. COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE
G.R. No. 177127 October 11, 2010
Del Castillo, J.

Doctrine:
The absence of the word “zero rated” on the invoices/receipts is fatal to a claim for credit/refund of input VAT.
Stare decisis et non quieta movere. Courts are bound by prior decisions. Thus, once a case has been decided one way, courts have no choice but to resolve subsequent cases involving the same issue in the same manner.

Facts:
Petitioner, a PEZA Corporation, filed applications for tax credit/refund of unutilized input VAT on its zero-rated sales for the taxable quarters of 2000. The claim for credit/refund, however, remained unacted by the respondent. Hence, petitioner was constrained to file a petition before the CTA.

The CTA eventually denied the petition for lack of the word “zero-rated” on the invoices/receipts.

Issue:
Whether or not the failure to print the word “zero-rated” on the invoices/receipts is fatal to a claim for credit/ refund of input VAT on zero-rated sales

Held:
Yes. The absence of the word “zero rated” on the invoices/receipts is fatal to a claim for credit/refund of input VAT. This has been squarely resolved in Panasonic Communications Imaging Corporation of the Philippines (formerly Matsushita Business Machine Corporation of the Philippines) v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue (G.R. No. 178090, 612 SCRA 28, February 8, 2010). In that case, the claim for tax credit/refund was denied for non-compliance with Section 4.108-1 of Revenue Regulations No. 7-95, which requires the word “zero rated” to be printed on the invoices/receipts covering zero-rated sales.

From the abovementioned decision, the Court ruled that the appearance of the word “zero-rated” on the face of invoices covering zero-rated sales prevents buyers from falsely claiming input VAT from their purchases when no VAT was actually paid. If, absent such word, a successful claim for input VAT is made, the government would be refunding money it did not collect.

Stare decisis et non quieta movere. Courts are bound by prior decisions. Thus, once a case has been decided one way, courts have no choice but to resolve subsequent cases involving the same issue in the same manner [Agencia Exquisite of Bohol, Incorporated v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, G.R. Nos. 150141, 157359 and 158644, February 12, 2009, 578 SCRA 539, 550].

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CD: Spouses Beltran v. Nieves

October 29, 2010 at 12:34 pm (2010, Case Digests) (, , , )

SPOUSES BELTRAN v. NIEVES
G.R. No. 175561 October 20, 2010
Carpio, J.

Doctrine:
– A certificate of title is conclusive evidence of ownership. Registered owners are entitled to the possession of the property covered by the title from the time such title was issued in their favor. No entitlement to possess the property is granted on the basis of an unregistered deed of sale.

– The tax declarations presented are not conclusive evidences of ownership, but are good indicators of possession in the concept of an owner.

– The only issue in an ejectment case is the physical possession of real property: possession de facto and not possession de jure. Prior physical possession is material only in forcible entry cases. In an ejectment suit, the question of ownership may be provisionally ruled upon only for the sole purpose of determining who is entitled to possession de facto.

– A person who occupies the land of another at the latter’s tolerance or permission, without any contract between them, is necessarily bound by an implied promise that he will vacate upon demand. In case of failure, a summary action for ejectment is the proper remedy against them.

– Any question regarding the validity of a title can only be assailed in an action expressly instituted for that purpose. A certificate of title shall not be subject to collateral attack.

Facts:
Respondent Nieves is the registered owner of the subject parcel of land as well as the house thereon. Milagros Beltran is Nieves’ niece, being the daughter of Gaston, Nieves’ brother. In asserting their ownership and rightful occupation against Nieves, petitioners spouses Beltran claim that Nieves sold the land and house to Gaston. The deed of sale, which Nieves disclaims having signed, remains unregistered.

The MTC and, subsequently, the RTC respected the right of possession of the spouses Beltran. The CA reversed the decision.

Issues:
1. Whether or not an unregistered deed of sale is sufficient to grant ownership over the property
2. Whether or not title is material in ejectment suits

Held:
1. No. No entitlement to possess the property is granted on the basis of an unregistered deed of sale. A certificate of title is conclusive evidence of ownership. Registered owners are entitled to the possession of the property covered by the title from the time such title was issued in their favor [Spouses Apostol v. Court of Appeals, 476 Phil. 403 (2004)].

The tax declarations presented by the spouses Beltran are not conclusive evidences of ownership, but are good indicators of possession in the concept of an owner.

Whatever right of possession that the spouses Beltran may have over the subject property cannot prevail over that of Nieves for the simple reason that Nieves is the registered owner of the subject property and the alleged deed of sale remains unregistered.

2. No. The only issue in an ejectment case is the physical possession of real property: possession de facto and not possession de jure. In an ejectment suit, the question of ownership may be provisionally ruled upon only for the sole purpose of determining who is entitled to possession de facto [Umpoc v. Mercado, 490 Phil. 120,136 (2005)].

A person who occupies the land of another at the latter’s tolerance or permission, without any contract between them, is necessarily bound by an implied promise that he will vacate upon demand, failing which a summary action for ejectment is the proper remedy against them [Calubayan, et al. v. Pascual, 128 Phil. 160, 163 (1967)].

Although it is true that the spouses Beltran, and not Nieves, were in prior physical possession of the subject property, this argument cannot hold water as prior physical possession is material only in forcible entry cases (Spouses Apostol v. Court of Appeals, supra).

Any question regarding the validity of Nieves’ title can only be assailed in an action expressly instituted for that purpose. A certificate of title shall not be subject to collateral attack (Section 48, P.D. No. 1529).

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Terrorism Defined

October 11, 2010 at 2:12 pm (Legal Definitions) (, )

How is “Terrorism” defined under Philippine laws?

Republic Act (RA) No. 9372, otherwise known as The Anti-Terror Law or The Human Security Act of 2007, which took effect last July 15, 2007, provides for its definition as follows:

SEC. 3. Terrorism. Any person who commits an act punishable under any of the following provisions of the Revised Penal Code:

1. Article 122 (Piracy in General and Mutiny in the High Seas or in the Philippine Waters);
2. Article 134 (Rebellion or Insurrection);
3. Article 134-a (Coup de tat), including acts committed by private persons;
4. Article 248 (Murder);
5. Article 267 (Kidnapping and Serious Illegal Detention);
6. Article 324 (Crimes Involving Destruction,

or under
1. Presidential Decree No. 1613 (The Law on Arson);
2. Republic Act No. 6969 (Toxic Substances and Hazardous and Nuclear Waste Control Act of 1990);
3. Republic Act No. 5207, (Atomic Energy Regulatory and Liability Act of 1968);
4. Republic Act No. 6235 (Anti-Hijacking Law);
5. Presidential Decree No. 532 (Anti-piracy and Anti-highway Robbery Law of 1974); and,
6. Presidential Decree No. 1866, as amended (Decree Codifying the Laws on Illegal and Unlawful Possession, Manufacture, Dealing in, Acquisition or Disposition of Firearms, Ammunitions or Explosives)

thereby sowing and creating a condition of widespread and extraordinary fear and panic among the populace, in order to coerce the government to give in to an unlawful demand shall be guilty of the crime of terrorism and shall suffer the penalty of forty (40) years of imprisonment, without the benefit of parole as provided for under Act No. 4103, otherwise known as the Indeterminate Sentence Law, as amended.

This post is made in the light of the Supreme Court’s recent ruling of the constitutionality of RA 9372.

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CD: Sibal v. Valdez

October 1, 2010 at 6:13 pm (1927, Case Digests) (, , , )

SIBAL v. VALDEZ
G.R. No. L-26278 August 4, 1927
Johnson, J.

Doctrine:
A crop raised on leased premises belongs to the lessee and in no sense forms part of the immovable.

“Ungathered products” have the nature of personal property. In other words, the phrase “personal property” should be understood to include “ungathered products.” Crops, whether growing or standing in the field ready to be harvested, are, when produced by annual cultivation, no part of the realty.

A valid sale may be made of a thing, which though not yet actually in existence, is reasonably certain to come into existence. A man may sell property of which he is potentially and not actually possessed.

Facts:
Plaintiff alleged that the defendant Vitaliano Mamawal, deputy sheriff of the Province of Tarlac, by virtue of a writ of execution issued by the Court of First Instance of Pampanga, attached and sold to the defendant Emiliano J. Valdez the sugar cane planted by the plaintiff and his tenants on seven parcels of land. Plaintiff offered to redeem said sugar cane and tendered to the defendant Valdez the amount sufficient to cover the price paid by the latter, the interest thereon and any assessments or taxes which he may have paid thereon after the purchase, and the interest corresponding thereto. However, Valdez refused to accept the money and to return the sugar cane to the plaintiff.

Meanwhile, defendant argued that the sugar cane was personal property hence not subject to redemption.

Issue:
1. Whether or not the sugar cane is to be classified as personal property
2. Whether or not future crops to be harvested can be considered a valid object of sale

Held:
1. No. A crop raised on leased premises in no sense forms part of the immovable. It belongs to the lessee, and may be sold by him, whether it be gathered or not, and it may be sold by his judgment creditors.

Ungathered products” have the nature of personal property. In other words, the phrase “personal property” should be understood to include “ungathered products.” Crops, whether growing or standing in the field ready to be harvested, are, when produced by annual cultivation, no part of the realty.

2. Yes. A valid sale may be made of a thing, which though not yet actually in existence, is reasonably certain to come into existence as the natural increment or usual incident of something already in existence, and then belonging to the vendor, and then title will vest in the buyer the moment the thing comes into existence (Emerson vs. European Railway Co., 67 Me., 387; Cutting vs. Packers Exchange, 21 Am. St. Rep., 63.).

A man may sell property of which he is potentially and not actually possessed.

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CD: Robles v. Hermanos

October 1, 2010 at 4:47 pm (1927, Case Digests) (, , )

ROBLES v. HERMANOS
G.R. No. L-26173 July 13, 1927
Street, J.

Doctrine:
The lessee may prove an independent verbal agreement on the part of the landlord to put the leased premises in a safe condition.

The appraised value of the property may be used to determine the price.

Facts:
A parcel of land was originally owned by the parents of the present plaintiff, Zacarias Robles. Upon the death of his father, plaintiff leased the parcel of land from the administrator with the stipulation that any permanent improvements necessary to the cultivation and exploitation of the hacienda should be made at the expense of the lessee without right to indemnity at the end of the term. As the place was in a run-down state, and it was foreseen that the lessee would be put to much expense in bringing the property to its productive capacity, the annual rent was fixed at the moderate amount of P2,000 per annum.

The plaintiff made various improvements and additions to the plant. The firm of Lizarraga Hermanos was well aware of the nature and extent of these improvements.

When the plaintiff’s mother died, defendant came forward with a proposal to buy the heirs’ portion of the property. In consideration that the plaintiff should shorten the term of his lease to the extent stated, the defendant agreed to pay him the value of all betterments that he had made on the land and furthermore to purchase from him all that belonged to him personally on the land. The plaintiff agreed to this.

On the ensuing instrument made, no reference was made to the surrender of the plaintiff’s rights as lessee, except in fixing the date when the lease should end; nor is anything said concerning the improvements which the plaintiff had placed. At the same time the promise of the defendant to compensate for him for the improvements was wanting. Accordingly, the representative of the defendant explained that this was unnecessary in view of the confidence existing between the parties.

On the part of the defendant it was claimed that the agreement with respect to compensating the plaintiff for improvements and other things was never in fact made.

Issue:
1. Whether or not the lessee may contest the validity of a written contract with oral evidence
2. Whether or not the appreciation value can be used to determine the price

Held:
1. Yes. In case of a written contract of lease, the lessee may prove an independent verbal agreement on the part of the landlord to put the leased premises in a safe condition. The verbal contract which the plaintiff has established in this case is therefore clearly independent of the main contract of conveyance, and evidence of such verbal contract is admissible under the doctrine above stated. In the case before us the written contract is complete in itself; the oral agreement is also complete in itself, and it is a collateral to the written contract, notwithstanding the fact that it deals with related matters.

2. Yes. The stipulation with respect to the appraisal of the property did not create a suspensive condition. The true sense of the contract evidently was that the defendant would take over the movables and the improvements at an appraised valuation, and the defendant obligated itself to promote the appraisal in good faith. As the defendant partially frustrated the appraisal, it violated a term of the contract and made itself liable for the true value of the things contracted about, as such value may be established in the usual course of proof. Furthermore, an unjust enrichment of the defendant would result from allowing it to appropriate the movables without compensating the plaintiff thereof.

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CD: Lichauco v. Olegario

October 1, 2010 at 10:06 am (1922, Case Digests) (, , )

LICHAUCO v. OLEGARIO
G.R. No. L-17709 June 20, 1922
Romualdez, J.

Doctrine:
An execution debtor has the perfect right to sell his right of redemption.

Facts:
A judgement was rendered against Olegario in a case, where he is also a defendant, wherein certain real properties of his are sold at a public auction in which he shall receive Php. 10,000, as offered, for these properties.

Gregorio Olegario sold to his cousin and brother-in-law Dalmacio Olegario, the other defendant in this case, his right of redemption over the aforesaid properties, executing the proper deed of sale, which was registered in the registry on the date of the conveyance. The plaintiff alleges that this sale is fictitious, — the result of a fraudulent conspiracy between the herein defendants.

Issue:
Whether or not an execution debtor has the authority to sell his right of redemption

Held:
Yes. An execution debtor has the perfect right to sell his right of redemption.

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