Remedial Law

Elena Lindain et al vs Court of Appeals et al

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G.R. No. 95305 – 212 SCRA 725 – Remedial Law – Special Proceedings – Guardianship – Judicial Authority to Sell Minor’s Property

Civil Law – Family Law – Alienation of a Child’s Property – Judicial Approval Needed Regardless of Property’s Value

In 1966, Dolores Luluquisin, a widow, sold a property to spouses Federico and Apolonia Ila. However, the property was actually registered in the names of her minor children (Elena Lindain et al.)

In 1987, the children (now beyond the age of majority) sued for the annulment of the deed of sale on the ground that their mother sold the property without judicial authority. Elena et al. argued that under the law, before a minor’s property may be sold, judicial authority must first be obtained.


1. Whether or not a mother may sell her minor child’s property without judicial authority if the property is of small value.

2. What is the prescriptive period in actions seeking to annul sales of minor’s property done without judicial authority?


1. No. A father or mother acting as legal administrator of the property of the child under parental authority cannot dispose of the child’s property without judicial authority. At present, the Court’s approval is indispensable regardless of the amount involved.

2. Spouses Ila argued that the action by Elena et al. has already prescribed because under the law, Elena et al.’s right to rescind the contract should have been exercised four (4) years after reaching the age of majority; that the youngest among the siblings at the time of filing was already 31 years old. This argument is not valid. The action for reconveyance has not yet prescribed for “real actions over immovables prescribe after thirty years” (Art. 1141, Civil Code). Since the sale took place in 1966, the action to recover the property had not yet prescribed when Elena et al sued in 1987.

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