GUILLERMA TUMLOS, petitioner, vs. SPOUSES MARIO FERNANDEZ and LOURDES FERNANDEZ, respondents.
G.R. No. 137650. April 12, 2000.*
An action for ejectment was filed against petitioners by Fernandez spouses who allegedly own the building apartment.
However, Guillerma Tumlos the petitioner contends that the respondents had no cause of action against her, since she is a co-owner of the subject premises and being named in the Contract to Sell as the wife of [Respondent] Mario Fernandez. She alleged that she cohabited with the petitioner-husband without the benefit of marriage, and that she bore him two (2) children. The lower court decided that since she failed to prove that she contributed money to the purchase price of the subject apartment building, there is no basis to justify her co-ownership.
Whether or not petitioner’s claim that she and Respondent Mario Fernandez were co-owners of the disputed property.
Whether or not the Family Code is inapplicable because the cohabitation and the acquisition of the property occurred before its effectivity
-NO. It is clear that, petitioner cohabited with Mario in a state of concubinage and it would be absurd to create a co-ownership where there exists a prior conjugal partnership or absolute community between the man and his lawful wife. The relationship is under Art 148, which states that “properties acquired by both of the parties through their actual joint contribution of money, property or industry shall be owned by them in common in proportion to their respective contributions”. In this case, petitioner fails to present any evidence that she had made an actual contribution to purchase the subject property. Hence, mere cohabitation without proof of contribution will not result in a co-ownership.
-NO. Suffice it to say that the law itself states that it can be applied retroactively if it does not prejudice vested or acquired rights. Petitioner failed to show any vested right over the property in question. Moreover, to resolve similar issues, we have applied Article 148 of the Family Code retroactively.