Section 1. Subject matter of special proceedings. — Rules of special proceedings are provided for in the following cases:
Settlement of estate of deceased persons;
Guardianship and custody of children;
Rescission and revocation of adoption;
Hospitalization of insane persons;
Change of name;
Voluntary dissolution of corporations;
Judicial approval of voluntary recognition of minor natural children;
Constitution of family home;
Declaration of absence and death;
Cancellation of correction of entries in the civil registry.
Section 2. Applicability of rules of civil actions. — In the absence of special provisions, the rules provided for in ordinary actions shall be, as far as practicable, applicable in special proceedings.
Settlement Of Estate Of Deceased Persons
RULE 73 Venue and Process
Section 1. Where estate of deceased persons settled. — If the decedents is an inhabitant of the Philippines at the time of his death, whether a citizen or an alien, his will shall be proved, or letters of administration granted, and his estate settled, in the Court of First Instance in the province in which he resides at the time of his death, and if he is an inhabitant of a foreign country, the Court of First Instance of any province in which he had estate. The court first taking cognizance of the settlement of the estate of a decedent, shall exercise jurisdiction to the exclusion of all other courts. The jurisdiction assumed by a court, so far as it depends on the place of residence of the decedent, or of the location of his estate, shall not be contested in a suit or proceeding, except in an appeal from that court, in the original case, or when the want of jurisdiction appears on the record.
Section 2. Where estate settled upon dissolution of marriage. — When the marriage is dissolved by the death of the husband or wife, the community property shall be inventoried, administered, and liquidated, and the debts thereof paid, in the testate or intestate proceedings of the deceased spouse. If both spouses have died, the conjugal partnership shall be liquidated in the testate or intestate proceedings of either.
Section 3. Process. — In the exercise of probate jurisdiction, Courts of First Instance may issue warrants and process necessary to compel the attendance of witnesses or to carry into effect theirs orders and judgments, and all other powers granted them by law. If a person does not perform an order or judgment rendered by a court in the exercise of its probate jurisdiction, it may issue a warrant for the apprehension and imprisonment of such person until he performs such order or judgment, or is released.
Section 4. Presumption of death. — For purposes of settlement of his estate, a person shall be presumed dead if absent and unheard from for the periods fixed in the Civil Code. But if such person proves to be alive, he shall be entitled to the balance of his estate after payment of all his debts. The balance may be recovered by motion in the same proceeding.
RULE 74 Summary Settlement of Estate
Section 1. Extrajudicial settlement by agreement between heirs. — If the decedent left no will and no debts and the heirs are all of age, or the minors are represented by their judicial or legal representatives duly authorized for the purpose, the parties may without securing letters of administration, divide the estate among themselves as they see fit by means of a public instrument filed in the office of the register of deeds, and should they disagree, they may do so in an ordinary action of partition. If there is only one heir, he may adjudicate to himself the entire estate by means of an affidavit filled in the office of the register of deeds. The parties to an extrajudicial settlement, whether by public instrument or by stipulation in a pending action for partition, or the sole heir who adjudicates the entire estate to himself by means of an affidavit shall file, simultaneously with and as a condition precedent to the filing of the public instrument, or stipulation in the action for partition, or of the affidavit in the office of the register of deeds, a bond with the said register of deeds, in an amount equivalent to the value of the personal property involved as certified to under oath by the parties concerned and conditioned upon the payment of any just claim that may be filed under section 4 of this rule. It shall be presumed that the decedent left no debts if no creditor files a petition for letters of administration within two (2) years after the death of the decedent.
The fact of the extrajudicial settlement or administration shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the manner provided in the nest succeeding section; but no extrajudicial settlement shall be binding upon any person who has not participated therein or had no notice thereof.
Section 2. Summary settlement of estate of small value. — Whenever the gross value of the estate of a deceased person, whether he died testate or intestate, does not exceed ten thousand pesos, and that fact is made to appear to the Court of First Instance having jurisdiction of the estate by the petition of an interested person and upon hearing, which shall be held not less than one (1) month nor more than three (3) months from the date of the last publication of a notice which shall be published once a week for three (3) consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the province, and after such other notice to interested persons as the court may direct, the court may proceed summarily, without the appointment of an executor or administrator, and without delay, to grant, if proper, allowance of the will, if any there be, to determine who are the persons legally entitled to participate in the estate, and to apportion and divide it among them after the payment of such debts of the estate as the court shall then find to be due; and such persons, in their own right, if they are of lawful age and legal capacity, or by their
guardians or trustees legally appointed and qualified, if otherwise, shall thereupon be entitled to receive and enter into the possession of the portions of the estate so awarded to them respectively. The court shall make such order as may be just respecting the costs of the proceedings, and all orders and judgments made or rendered in the course thereof shall be recorded in the office of the clerk, and the order of partition or award, if it involves real estate, shall be recorded in the proper register's office.
Section 3. Bond to be filed by distributees. — The court, before allowing a partition in accordance with the provisions of the preceding section, my require the distributees, if property other than real is to be distributed, to file a bond in an amount to be fixed by court, conditioned for the payment of any just claim which may be filed under the next succeeding section.
Section 4. Liability of distributees and estate. — If it shall appear at any time within two (2) years after the settlement and distribution of an estate in accordance with the provisions of either of the first two sections of this rule, that an heir or other person has been unduly deprived of his lawful participation in the estate, such heir or such other person may compel the settlement of the estate in the courts in the manner hereinafter provided for the purpose of satisfying such lawful participation. And if within the same time of two (2) years, it shall appear that there are debts outstanding against the estate which have not been paid, or that an heir or other person has been unduly deprived of his lawful participation payable in money, the court having jurisdiction of the estate may, by order for that purpose, after hearing, settle the amount of such debts or lawful participation and order how much and in what manner each distributee shall contribute in the payment thereof, and may issue execution, if circumstances require, against the bond provided in the preceding section or against the real estate belonging to the deceased, or both. Such bond and such real estate shall remain charged with a liability to creditors, heirs, or other persons for the full period of two (2) years after such distribution, notwithstanding any transfers of real estate that may have been made.
Section 5. Period for claim of minor or incapacitated person. — If on the date of the expiration of the period of two (2) years prescribed in the preceding section the person authorized to file a claim is a minor or mentally incapacitated, or is in prison or outside the Philippines, he may present his claim within one (1) year after such disability is removed.
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