Power to decide validity of, cancel land title


Acting on petitioner's Motion for Extension of Time, the Court resolves to GRANT petitioner a period of thirty (30) days from the expiration of the reglementary period within which to file a Petition for Review on Certiorari.

After a careful review of the allegations, issues, and arguments adduced in the instant Petition for Review on Certiorari filed under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court, the Court resolves to DENY the same for (1) raising factual issues; and (2) failure of the petitioner to show that the Court of Appeals committed any reversible error in finding that respondent, as the registered owner of the subject property, is entitled to its possession.

First of all, the issues raised by petitioner are factual in nature. It is a basic principle that "only questions of law are entertained in petitions for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court,"[1] as "the Court's role in a petition under Rule 45 is limited to reviewing or reversing errors of law allegedly committed by the appellate court."[2]

In any case, even if a factual review of the instant case were allowed, it would still result in the denial of the instant Petition. The factual findings of the Metropolitan Trial Court that respondent was the registered owner of the subject property and that he was entitled to its possession are binding and conclusive on the Court considering that these were affirmed by both the Regional Trial Court and the Court of Appeals.

Moreover, it bears stressing that a "Torrens Certificate of Title is indefeasible and binding upon the whole world unless and until it has been nullified by a court of competent jurisdiction. Under existing statutory and decisional law, the power to pass upon the validity of such certificate of title at the first instance properly belongs to the Regional Trial Court in a direct proceeding for cancellation of title."[3]

Thus, the Court finds no error on the part of the Court of Appeals in ruling that respondent, as the registered owner of the subject property, was entitled to its possession. Until and unless his title is actually cancelled in a direct proceeding for cancellation of title, respondent is still considered the true and lawful owner of the subject property.

ACCORDINGLY, the Court resolves to AFFIRM the January 6, 2017 Decision and the October 19, 2017 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 132015.


[1] Samala v. Court of Appeals, 467 Phil. 563, 568 (2004).
[2] Estreller v. Ysmael,
 600 Phil. 292, 297 (2009).
[3] Co v. Militar, 466 Phil. 217, 224 (2004).