Amado Canuto and Nemesia Ibasco sold a parcel of land located in the barrio of Santo Domingo, Iriga, Camarines Sur, to the spouses Amado Carumba and Benita Canuto. The deed of sale was never registered. On January 21, 1957, a complaint for a sum of money was filed by Santiago Balbuena against Amado Canuto and Nemesia Ibasco. A decision was rendered in favor of the plaintiff. The ex-officio sheriff issued a “Definite Deed of Sale” of the property in favor of Santiago which was subsequently registered. The CFI, finding that after the execution of the document, Carumba had taken possession of the land, planting bananas, coffee and other vegetables, declared him to be the owner of the property under a consummate sale; held void the execution levy made by the sheriff, pursuant to a judgment against Carumba’s vendor, Amado Canuto; and nullified the sale in favor of the judgment creditor, Santiago Balbuena. The Court, therefore, declared Carumba the owner of the litigated property. The Court of Appeals declared that there having been a double sale of the land, Balbuena’s title was superior to that of his adversary since the execution sale had been properly registered in good faith and the sale to Carumba was not recorded.


Whether the rule on double sale would apply on the case at bar.


No. While under Article 1544, registration in good faith prevails over possession in the event of a double sale by the vendor of the same piece of land to different vendees, said article is of no application to the case at bar. The reason is that the purchaser of unregistered land at a sheriff’s execution sale only steps into the shoes of the judgment debtor. He merely acquires the latter’s interest in the property sold as of the time the property was levied upon.

Digest Credit: Joseph Eric Pocholo Briones



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