G.R. No. 2933. December 08, 1905

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5 Phil. 400

[ G.R. No. 2933. December 08, 1905 ]




The estate of Albino Goyenechea being in the process of settlement
in the Court of First Instance of Manila, a committee was appointed in
accordance with the provisions of section 669 of the Code of Civil
Procedure for the purpose of appraising the property of the estate of
the deceased and allowing claims against it. Before this committee the
plaintiff presented a claim, the justice of which the administrator
admitted and it was allowed by the committee for the sum of P4,790.82.
The report of the committee was filed in court, and no appeal was taken
from its decision. The plaintiff made an application to the court over
which.the defendant judge presided for an order requiring the
administrator to pay the claim. This motion was denied, and in lieu
thereof an order was made requiring the plaintiff company to present
evidence before the judge as to the legality of said claim, the
administrator having in the meantime filed an objection to its
allowance, asserting that it should not be paid. Thereupon the
plaintiff brought this original action of prohibition in this court,
asking that the defendant judge be directed to refrain from any action
in the matter of such claim, other than to direct the administrator to
pay the same.

It appears from the answer of the judge and from the evidence
submitted before us that Albino died on the 1st day of September, 1898,
and that the claim of the plaintiff arose out of the transactions which
took place after the death of the testator. Under these circumstances
the committee had no jurisdiction whatever over the claim thus
presented before it. Section 669 of the Code, of Civil Procedure
provides that this committee shall be appointed “to allow claims against the estate.” Section 686 provides that “they
may try and decide upon claims which by law survive against the
executors or administrators, except claims for the possession of or
title to real estate.
” This section means that their jurisdiction
is limited to claims which existed prior to the death of the deceased
and which survived him, and that they have no jurisdiction over any
claim which did not arise during his lifetime. Causes of action which
arise after a person’s death are not proper claims for presentation to
such committee.

The action of the court below in disregarding the report of the
committee was correct, and his action in requiring a hearing before
himself upon the validity of the claim was entirely proper.

It is alleged in the complaint in this action that the judge is
about to distribute the estate without the payment of this claim. It
appears from the answer, however, that he has no such intention, and
that his purpose is to give the plaintiff an opportunity to present
evidence before him as to the legality of his demand before any action
is taken looking to the distribution of the estate.

As has been said, Albino died in 1898, and it appears that action
was taken looking toward the settlement of his estate in accordance
with laws then existing. Nothing was done under the present Code of
Civil Procedure until the 21st day of May, 1904, when a petition for
the probate of his will and the appointment of an administrator was
presented to the court below. The plaintiff does not ask for a writ of
prohibition on the ground that under these circumstances the Court of
First Instance had no jurisdiction to interfere with the administration
of an estate which had been commenced under the former law. We
therefore do not pass upon the question as to whether the
administration of an estate of a person who died before the present
Code of Civil Procedure went into force, and which administration was
commenced under the old law, should be continued under that law, or
should be commenced anew under the present law.

Let final judgment be entered in this case in favor of the
defendants, with costs against the plaintiff, in favor of the defendant
Molina. So ordered.

Arellano, C. J., Mapa, Johnson, and Carson, JJ., concur.

Date created: April 28, 2014


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