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Relevant articles from Legal Updates blog

Support for abandoned woman and family

Heirs and inheritance (Part 1): If your spouse dies without a last will, who will inherit?

Heirs and inheritance (Part 2): Legitimes, free portions, and intestate shares

Heirs and inheritance (Part 6): Settle the estate of your deceased spouse before marrying again

Heirs and inheritance (Part 7): Is property acquired before marriage the exclusive property of each spouse or does it belong to both spouses?

Heirs and inheritance (Part 8): Do inherited properties belong exclusively to the spouse who inherited them or to both spouses?

When a man is married to or living in with several women successively or simultaneously, who has the right to inherit from him?

Disinheriting children and descendants, legitimate as well as illegitimate

Disinheriting your spouse

Adultery, concubinage and psychological violence

Divorce obtained abroad by a Filipino not recognized here

Divorce and remarriage

The Amy Perez case: Psychological incapacity in annulment of marriages


Custody battles over children: what determines fitness of a parent over another?

Can a mother be deprived of custody of her child?

What happens in an annulment case if the respondent fails to file an Answer?

Can you legally force your spouse to live with and to love you?

A primer on the Newborn Screening Act of 2004

A primer on RA 8972 or the Solo Parents’ Welfare Act of 2000

Can an unwed mother avail of the benefits of the Solo Parents Welfare Act?

Legal definition of "death"

Laban o Bawi : Parents’ obligations in handling their children’s property

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on the property relations between husband and wife

Primer on the Family Code of the Philippines: Absolute community of property

Primer on the Family Code of the Philippines: Donations by reason of marriage

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on legitimation

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on illegitimate children

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on paternity, filiation and legitimate children

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on legal separation

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on the family and family home

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on void and voidable marriages

Family Code of the Philippines: Primer on marriage

Primer on RA 9262 or the "Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children Act of 2004"

Hope and help for the battered woman (2): RA 9262 essential provisions

Hope and help for the battered woman (3): RA 9262 Protection Orders

The "Battered Woman Syndrome" as defense

Mediation not applicable to domestic violence cases

Free PDF newsletters on legal issues available for download

Relevant articles from Salt and Light blog (on relationships, marriage and family)

Lessons in life and love from Miriam Quiambao

Relationship tips for Shalani (and other single men and women)

Getting married? Take a look at what "covenant marriage" is

How to save your marriage alone

Boundaries in Marriage

Oldies but Goodies: Ten Commandments for Wives and Husbands

Why Marriages Fail: He said, She said ...

Communication: Key to your Marriage

Hope and help for the battered woman (4): Emotional abuse / psychological violence

Hope and help for the battered woman (5): Biblical response to abuse; evangelical Christians are best husbands – University of Virginia study

"Sad Movies Always Make Me Cry"

Surviving Marital Infidelity

Marital infidelity: causes, consequences and conclusions

Marriage: The Ultimate Fighting Championship

All about women: Move over, Jang Geum!

Do wives really want husbands to share their feelings and thoughts with them?

Emotional word pictures as a communication tool for increasing intimacy between husbands and wives

Hate Eight? Eight kinds of husbands and wives

Love Potion No. 9

Rights and obligations between husband and wife from the Biblical standpoint and that of the Family Code

Ruffa, Ylmaz, TV Patrol, divorce and remarriage by Filipinos

The only exercise some people do is jumping to conclusions: Mind reading and negative interpretations

Transformers: Why do persistent suitors become passive husbands?

Why do men think the things they think, say the things they say, and do the things they do?

Mercado-Fehr vs. Fehr
G.R. No. 152716.

October 23, 2003

This case arose from a petition for declaration of nullity of marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity to comply with the essential marital obligations under Article 36 of the Family Code filed by petitioner Elna Mercado-Fehr against respondent Bruno Fehr before the Regional Trial Court of Makati in March 1997.

After due proceedings, the trial court declared the marriage between petitioner and respondent void ab initio under Article 36 of the Family Code and ordered the dissolution of their conjugal partnership of property.

It appears from the facts, as found by the trial court, that in March 1983, after two years of long-distance courtship, petitioner left Cebu City and moved in with respondent in the latter’s residence in Metro Manila. Their relations bore fruit and their first child, Michael Bruno Fehr, was born on December 3, 1983. The couple got married on March 14, 1985. In the meantime, they purchased on installment a condominium unit, Suite 204, at LCG Condominium, as evidenced by a Contract to Sell dated July 26, 1983 executed by respondent as the buyer and J.V. Santos Commercial Corporation as the seller. Petitioner also signed the contract as witness, using the name Elna Mercado Fehr. Upon completion of payment, the title to the condominium unit was issued in the name of petitioner.

In light of these facts, we give more credence to petitioner’s submission that Suite 204 was acquired during the parties’ cohabitation. Accordingly, under Article 147 of the Family Code, said property should be governed by the rules on co-ownership. The Family Code provides: Article 147. When a man and a woman who are capacitated to marry each other, live exclusively with each other as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage or under a void marriage, their wages and salaries shall be owned by them in equal shares and the property acquired by both of them through their work or industry shall be governed by the rules on co-ownership.

In the absence of proof to the contrary, properties acquired while they lived together shall be presumed to have been obtained by their joint efforts, work or industry, and shall be owned by them in equal shares. For purposes of this Article, a party who did not participate in the acquisition by the other party of any property shall be deemed to have contributed jointly to the acquisition thereof if the former’s efforts consisted in the care and maintenance of their family and of the household.

Neither party can encumber or dispose by acts inter vivos of his or her share in the property acquired during cohabitation and owned in common, without the consent of the other, until after the termination of their cohabitation.

When only one of the parties to a void marriage is in good faith, the share of the party in bad faith in the co-ownership shall be forfeited in favor of their common children. In case of default of or waiver by any or all of the common children or their descendants, each vacant share shall belong to the respective surviving descendants.

Article 147 applies to unions of parties who are legally capacitated and not barred by any impediment to contract marriage, but whose marriage is nonetheless void, as in the case at bar. This provision creates a co-ownership with respect to the properties they acquire during their cohabitation.

We held in Valdes vs. Regional Trial Court, Br. 102, Quezon City: This peculiar kind of co-ownership applies when a man and a woman, suffering no legal impediment to marry each other, so exclusively live together as husband and wife under a void marriage or without the benefit of marriage. The term “capacitated” in the provision (in the first paragraph of the law) refers to the legal capacity of a party to contract marriage, i.e., any male or female of the age of eighteen years or upwards not under any of the impediments mentioned in Article 37 and 38 of the Code.

Under this property regime, property acquired by both spouses through their work and industry shall be governed by the rules on equal co-ownership. Any property acquired during the union is prima facie presumed to have been obtained through their joint efforts. A party who did not participate in the acquisition of the property shall still be considered as having contributed thereto jointly if said party’s efforts consisted in the care and maintenance of the family household.

Thus, for Article 147 to operate, the man and the woman: (1) must be capacitated to marry each other; (2) live exclusively with each other as husband and wife; and (3) their union is without the benefit of marriage or their marriage is void. All these elements are present in the case at bar. It has not been shown that petitioner and respondent suffered any impediment to marry each other. They lived exclusively with each other as husband and wife when petitioner moved in with respondent in his residence and were later united in marriage. Their marriage, however, was found to be void under Article 36 of the Family Code because of respondent’s psychological incapacity to comply with essential marital obligations.

The disputed property, Suite 204 of LCG Condominium, was purchased on installment basis on July 26, 1983, at the time when petitioner and respondent were already living together. Hence, it should be considered as common property of petitioner and respondent.

Saguid vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 150611. June 10, 2003

The regime of limited co-ownership of property governing the union of parties who are not legally capacitated to marry each other, but who nonetheless live together as husband and wife, applies to properties acquired during said cohabitation in proportion to their respective contributions. Co-ownership will only be up to the extent of the proven actual contribution of money, property or industry. Absent proof of the extent thereof, their contributions and corresponding shares shall be presumed to be equal.

Seventeen-year old Gina S. Rey was married, but separated de facto from her husband, when she met petitioner Jacinto Saguid in Marinduque, sometime in July 1987. After a brief courtship, the two decided to cohabit as husband and wife in a house built on a lot owned by Jacinto’s father.Their cohabitation was not blessed with any children. Jacinto made a living as the patron of their fishing vessel Saguid Brothers.Gina, on the other hand, worked as a fish dealer, but decided to work as an entertainer in Japan from 1992 to 1994 when her relationship with Jacinto’s relatives turned sour. Her periodic absence, however, did not ebb away the conflict with petitioner’s relatives. In 1996, the couple decided to separate and end up their 9-year cohabitation.

On January 9, 1997, private respondent filed a complaint for Partition and Recovery of Personal Property with Receivership against the petitioner with the Regional Trial Court of Boac, Marinduque. She alleged that from her salary of $1,500.00 a month as entertainer in Japan, she was able to contribute P70,000.00 in the completion of their unfinished house. Also, from her own earnings as an entertainer and fish dealer, she was able to acquire and accumulate appliances, pieces of furniture and household effects, with a total value of P111,375.00. She prayed that she be declared the sole owner of these personal properties and that the amount of P70,000.00, representing her contribution to the construction of their house, be reimbursed to her.

Private respondent testified that she deposited part of her earnings in her savings account with First Allied Development Bank. Her Pass Book shows that as of May 23, 1995, she had a balance of P21,046.08. She further stated that she had a total of P35,465.00 share in the joint account deposit which she and the petitioner maintained with the same bank. Gina declared that said deposits were spent for the purchase of construction materials, appliances and other personal properties.

In his answer to the complaint, petitioner claimed that the expenses for the construction of their house were defrayed solely from his income as a captain of their fishing vessel. He averred that private respondent’s meager income as fish dealer rendered her unable to contribute in the construction of said house. Besides, selling fish was a mere pastime to her; as such, she was contented with the small quantity of fish allotted to her from his fishing trips. Petitioner further contended that Gina did not work continuously in Japan from 1992 to 1994, but only for a 6-month duration each year. When their house was repaired and improved sometime in 1995-1996, private respondent did not share in the expenses because her earnings as entertainer were spent on the daily needs and business of her parents. From his income in the fishing business, he claimed to have saved a total of P130,000.00, P75,000.00 of which was placed in a joint account deposit with private respondent. This savings, according to petitioner was spent in purchasing the disputed personal properties.

It is not disputed that Gina and Jacinto were not capacitated to marry each other because the former was validly married to another man at the time of her cohabitation with the latter. Their property regime therefore is governed by Article 148 of the Family Code, which applies to bigamous marriages, adulterous relationships, relationships in a state of concubinage, relationships where both man and woman are married to other persons, and multiple alliances of the same married man. Under this regime, only the 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 ... Proof of actual contribution is required.

In the case at bar, although the adulterous cohabitation of the parties commenced in 1987, which is before the date of the effectivity of the Family Code on August 3, 1998, Article 148 thereof applies because this provision was intended precisely to fill up the hiatus in Article 144 of the Civil Code. Before Article 148 of the Family Code was enacted, there was no provision governing property relations of couples living in a state of adultery or concubinage.Hence, even if the cohabitation or the acquisition of the property occurred before the Family Code took effect, Article 148 governs.

In the cases of Agapay v. Palang, and Tumlos v. Fernandez, which involved the issue of co-ownership of properties acquired by the parties to a bigamous marriage and an adulterous relationship, respectively, we ruled that proof of actual contribution in the acquisition of the property is essential. The claim of co-ownership of the petitioners therein who were parties to the bigamous and adulterous union is without basis because they failed to substantiate their allegation that they contributed money in the purchase of the disputed properties. Also in Adriano v. Court of Appeals, we ruled that the fact that the controverted property was titled in the name of the parties to an adulterous relationship is not sufficient proof of co-ownership absent evidence of actual contribution in the acquisition of the property.

As in other civil cases, the burden of proof rests upon the party who, as determined by the pleadings or the nature of the case, asserts an affirmative issue. Contentions must be proved by competent evidence and reliance must be had on the strength of the party’s own evidence and not upon the weakness of the opponent’s defense. This applies with more vigor where, as in the instant case, the plaintiff was allowed to present evidence ex parte. The plaintiff is not automatically entitled to the relief prayed for. The law gives the defendant some measure of protection as the plaintiff must still prove the allegations in the complaint. Favorable relief can be granted only after the court is convinced that the facts proven by the plaintiff warrant such relief. Indeed, the party alleging a fact has the burden of proving it and a mere allegation is not evidence.

In the case at bar, the controversy centers on the house and personal properties of the parties. Private respondent alleged in her complaint that she contributed P70,000.00 for the completion of their house. However, nowhere in her testimony did she specify the extent of her contribution. What appears in the record are receipts in her name for the purchase of construction materials on November 17, 1995 and December 23, 1995, in the total amount of P11,413.00.

On the other hand, both parties claim that the money used to purchase the disputed personal properties came partly from their joint account with First Allied Development Bank. While there is no question that both parties contributed in their joint account deposit, there is, however, no sufficient proof of the exact amount of their respective shares therein. Pursuant to Article 148 of the Family Code, in the absence of proof of extent of the parties’ respective contribution, their share shall be presumed to be equal. Here, the disputed personal properties were valued at P111,375.00, the existence and value of which were not questioned by the petitioner. Hence, their share therein is equivalent to one-half, i.e., P55,687.50 each.

CARIÑO vs. CARIÑO
G.R. No. 132529
February 2, 2001

The issue for resolution in the case at bar hinges on the validity of the two marriages contracted by the deceased SPO4 Santiago S. Cariño, whose death benefits is now the subject of the controversy between the two Susans whom he married.

Under Article 40 of the Family Code, the absolute nullity of a previous marriage may be invoked for purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void.  Meaning, where the absolute nullity of a previous marriage is sought to be invoked for purposes of contracting a second marriage, the sole basis acceptable in law, for said projected marriage to be free from legal infirmity, is a final judgment declaring the previous marriage void. However, for purposes other than remarriage, no judicial action is necessary to declare a marriage an absolute nullity.  For other purposes, such as but not limited to the determination of heirship, legitimacy or illegitimacy of a child, settlement of estate, dissolution of property regime, or a criminal case for that matter, the court may pass upon the validity of marriage even after the death of the parties thereto, and even in a suit not directly instituted to question the validity of said marriage, so long as it is essential to the determination of the case. In such instances, evidence must be adduced, testimonial or documentary, to prove the existence of grounds rendering such a previous marriage an absolute nullity. These need not be limited solely to an earlier final judgment of a court declaring such previous marriage void.

It is clear therefore that the Court is clothed with sufficient authority to pass upon the validity of the two marriages in this case, as the same is essential to the determination of who is rightfully entitled to the subject death benefits of the deceased.

It is beyond cavil, therefore, that the marriage between petitioner Susan Nicdao and the deceased, having been solemnized without the necessary marriage license, and not being one of the marriages exempt from the marriage license requirement, is undoubtedly void ab initio.

It does not follow from the foregoing disquisition, however, that since the marriage of petitioner and the deceased is declared void ab initio, the death benefits under scrutiny would now be awarded to respondent Susan Yee.  To reiterate, under Article 40 of the Family Code, for purposes of remarriage, there must first be a prior judicial declaration of the nullity of a previous marriage, though void, before a party can enter into a second marriage, otherwise, the second marriage would also be void.

Accordingly, the declaration in the instant case of nullity of the previous marriage of the deceased and petitioner Susan Nicdao does not validate the second marriage of the deceased with respondent Susan Yee. The fact remains that their marriage was solemnized without first obtaining a judicial decree declaring the marriage of petitioner Susan Nicdao and the deceased void.  Hence, the marriage of respondent Susan Yee and the deceased is, likewise, void ab initio.

One of the effects of the declaration of nullity of marriage is the separation of the property of the spouses according to the applicable property regime. Considering that the two marriages are void ab initio, the applicable property regime would not be absolute community or conjugal partnership of property, but rather, be governed by the provisions of Articles 147 and 148 of the Family Code on Property Regime of Unions Without Marriage.

Under Article 148 of the Family Code, which refers to the property regime of bigamous marriages, adulterous relationships, relationships in a state of concubine, relationships where both man and woman are married to other persons, multiple alliances of the same married man, - ... [O]nly the 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 property regime, the properties acquired by the parties through their actual joint contribution shall belong to the co-ownership.  Wages and salaries earned by each party belong to him or her exclusively. Then too, contributions in the form of care of the home, children and household, or spiritual or moral inspiration, are excluded in this regime.

How to become a Christian

Who is God? What is man? Who is Christ? Repent and believe

the Kristo

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Executive Order No. 209                 
The Family Code of the Philippines

Notes: This web page is AnswerTips-enabled. Double click any word or technical term and instant pop-up definitions will appear. You can also download free PDF newsletters on legal issues.

Title IV: Property Relations Between Husband and Wife

Chapter 1. General Provisions

Art. 74. The property relationship between husband and wife shall be governed in the following order:

(1) By marriage settlements executed before the marriage;

(2) By the provisions of this Code; and

(3) By the local custom.
(118)

Art. 75. The future spouses may, in the marriage settlements, agree upon the regime of absolute community, conjugal partnership of gains, complete separation of property, or any other regime. In the absence of a marriage settlement, or when the regime agreed upon is void, the system of absolute community of property as established in this Code shall govern. (119a)

Art. 76. In order that any modification in the marriage settlements may be valid, it must be made before the celebration of the marriage, subject to the provisions of Articles 66, 67, 128, 135 and 136. (121)

Art. 77. The marriage settlements and any modification thereof shall be in writing, signed by the parties and executed before the celebration of the marriage. They shall not prejudice third persons unless they are registered in the local civil registry where the marriage contract is recorded as well as in the proper registries of properties. (122a)

Art. 78. A minor who according to law may contract marriage may also execute his or her marriage settlements, but they shall be valid only if the persons designated in Article 14 to give consent to the marriage are made parties to the agreement, subject to the provisions of Title IX of this Code. (120a)

Art. 79. For the validity of any marriage settlement executed by a person upon whom a sentence of civil interdiction has been pronounced or who is subject to any other disability, it shall be indispensable for the guardian appointed by a competent court to be made a party thereto. (123a)

Art. 80. In the absence of a contrary stipulation in a marriage settlement, the property relations of the spouses shall be governed by Philippine laws, regardless of the place of the celebration of the marriage and their residence.

This rule shall not apply:

(1) Where both spouses are aliens;

(2) With respect to the extrinsic validity of contracts affecting property not situated in the Philippines and executed in the country where the property is located; and

(3) With respect to the extrinsic validity of contracts entered into in the Philippines but affecting property situated in a foreign country whose laws require different formalities for its extrinsic validity. (124a)

Art. 81. Everything stipulated in the settlements or contracts referred to in the preceding articles in consideration of a future marriage, including donations between the prospective spouses made therein, shall be rendered void if the marriage does not take place. However, stipulations that do not depend upon the celebration of the marriages shall be valid. (125a)

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Chapter 2. Donations by Reason of Marriage

Art. 82. Donations by reason of marriage are those which are made before its celebration, in consideration of the same, and in favor of one or both of the future spouses. (126)

Art. 83. These donations are governed by the rules on ordinary donations established in Title III of Book III of the Civil Code, insofar as they are not modified by the following articles. (127a)

Art. 84. If the future spouses agree upon a regime other than the absolute community of property, they cannot donate to each other in their marriage settlements more than one-fifth of their present property. Any excess shall be considered void.

Donations of future property shall be governed by the provisions on testamentary succession and the formalities of wills. (130a)

Art. 85. Donations by reason of marriage of property subject to encumbrances shall be valid. In case of foreclosure of the encumbrance and the property is sold for less than the total amount of the obligation secured, the donee shall not be liable for the deficiency. If the property is sold for more than the total amount of said obligation, the donee shall be entitled to the excess. (131a)

Art. 86. A donation by reason of marriage may be revoked by the donor in the following cases:

(1) If the marriage is not celebrated or judicially declared void ab initio except donations made in the marriage settlements, which shall be governed by Article 81;

(2) When the marriage takes place without the consent of the parents or guardian, as required by law;

(3) When the marriage is annulled, and the donee acted in bad faith;

(4) Upon legal separation, the donee being the guilty spouse;

(5) If it is with a resolutory condition and the condition is complied with;

(6) When the donee has committed an act of ingratitude as specified by the provisions of the Civil Code on donations in general. (132a)

Art. 87. Every donation or grant of gratuitous advantage, direct or indirect, between the spouses during the marriage shall be void, except moderate gifts which the spouses may give each other on the occasion of any family rejoicing. The prohibition shall also apply to persons living together as husband and wife without a valid marriage. (133a)

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Chapter 3. System of Absolute Community

Section 1. General Provisions

Art. 88. The absolute community of property between spouses shall commence at the precise moment that the marriage is celebrated. Any stipulation, express or implied, for the commencement of the community regime at any other time shall be void. (145a)

Art. 89. No waiver of rights, shares and effects of the absolute community of property during the marriage can be made except in case of judicial separation of property.

When the waiver takes place upon a judicial separation of property, or after the marriage has been dissolved or annulled, the same shall appear in a public instrument and shall be recorded as provided in Article 77. The creditors of the spouse who made such waiver may petition the court to rescind the waiver to the extent of the amount sufficient to cover the amount of their credits. (146a)

Art. 90. The provisions on co-ownership shall apply to the absolute community of property between the spouses in all matters not provided for in this Chapter. (n)

Section 2. What Constitutes Community Property

Art. 91. Unless otherwise provided in this Chapter or in the marriage settlements, the community property shall consist of all the property owned by the spouses at the time of the celebration of the marriage or acquired thereafter. (197a)

Art. 92. The following shall be excluded from the community property:

(1) Property acquired during the marriage by gratuitous title by either spouse, and the fruits as well as the income thereof, if any, unless it is expressly provided by the donor, testator or grantor that they shall form part of the community property;

(2) Property for personal and exclusive use of either spouse. However, jewelry shall form part of the community property;

(3) Property acquired before the marriage by either spouse who has legitimate descendants by a former marriage, and the fruits as well as the income, if any, of such property. (201a)

Art. 93. Property acquired during the marriage is presumed to belong to the community, unless it is proved that it is one of those excluded therefrom. (160)

Section 3. Charges and Obligations of the Absolute Community

Art. 94. The absolute community of property shall be liable for:

(1) The support of the spouses, their common children, and legitimate children of either spouse; however, the support of illegitimate children shall be governed by the provisions of this Code on Support;

(2) All debts and obligations contracted during the marriage by the designated administrator-spouse for the benefit of the community, or by both spouses, or by one spouse with the consent of the other;

(3) Debts and obligations contracted by either spouse without the consent of the other to the extent that the family may have been benefited;

(4) All taxes, liens, charges and expenses, including major or minor repairs, upon the community property;

(5) All taxes and expenses for mere preservation made during marriage upon the separate property of either spouse used by the family;

(6) Expenses to enable either spouse to commence or complete a professional or vocational course, or other activity for self-improvement;

(7) Ante-nuptial debts of either spouse insofar as they have redounded to the benefit of the family;

(8) The value of what is donated or promised by both spouses in favor of their common legitimate children for the exclusive purpose of commencing or completing a professional or vocational course or other activity for self-improvement;

(9) Ante-nuptial debts of either spouse other than those falling under paragraph (7) of this Article, the support of illegitimate children of either spouse, and liabilities incurred by either spouse by reason of a crime or a quasi-delict, in case of absence or insufficiency of the exclusive property of the debtor-spouse, the payment of which shall be considered as advances to be deducted from the share of the debtor-spouse upon liquidation of the community; and

(10) Expenses of litigation between the spouses unless the suit is found to be groundless.

If the community property is insufficient to cover the foregoing liabilities, except those falling under paragraph (9), the spouses shall be solidarily liable for the unpaid balance with their separate properties. (161a, 162a, 163a, 202a-205a)

Art. 95. Whatever may be lost during the marriage in any game of chance, betting, sweepstakes, or any other kind of gambling, whether permitted or prohibited by law, shall be borne by the loser and shall not be charged to the community but any winnings therefrom shall form part of the community property. (164a)

Section 4. Ownership, Administration, Enjoyment and Disposition of the Community Property

Art. 96. The administration and enjoyment of the community property shall belong to both spouses jointly. In case of disagreement, the husband's decision shall prevail, subject to recourse to the court by the wife for proper remedy, which must be availed of within five years from the date of the contract implementing such decision.

In the event that one spouse is incapacitated or otherwise unable to participate in the administration of the common properties, the other spouse may assume sole powers of administration. These powers do not include disposition or encumbrance without authority of the court or the written consent of the other spouse. In the absence of such authority or consent, the disposition or encumbrance shall be void. However, the transaction shall be construed as a continuing offer on the part of the consenting spouse and the third person, and may be perfected as a binding contract upon the acceptance by the other spouse or authorization by the court before the offer is withdrawn by either or both offerors. (206a)

Art. 97. Either spouse may dispose by will of his or her interest in the community property. (n)

Art. 98. Neither spouse may donate any community property without the consent of the other. However, either spouse may, without the consent of the other, make moderate donations from the community property for charity or on occasions of family rejoicing or family distress. (n)

Section 5. Dissolution of Absolute Community Regime

Art. 99. The absolute community terminates:

(1) Upon the death of either spouse;

(2) When there is a decree of legal separation;

(3) When the marriage is annulled or declared void; or

(4) In case of judicial separation of property during the marriage under Articles 134 to 138. (175a)

Art. 100. The separation in fact between husband and wife shall not affect the regime of absolute community except that:

(1) The spouse who leaves the conjugal home or refuses to live therein, without just cause, shall not have the right to be supported;

(2) When the consent of one spouse to any transaction of the other is required by law, judicial authorization shall be obtained in a summary proceeding;

(3) In the absence of sufficient community property, the separate property of both spouses shall be solidarily liable for the support of the family. The spouse present shall, upon proper petition in a summary proceeding, be given judicial authority to administer or encumber any specific separate property of the other spouse and use the fruits or proceeds thereof to satisfy the latter's share. (178a)

Art. 101. If a spouse without just cause abandons the other or fails to comply with his or her obligations to the family, the aggrieved spouse may petition the court for receivership, for judicial separation of property or for authority to be the sole administrator of the absolute community, subject to such precautionary conditions as the court may impose.

The obligations to the family mentioned in the preceding paragraph refer to marital, parental or property relations.

A spouse is deemed to have abandoned the other when he or she has left the conjugal dwelling without intention of returning. The spouse who has left the conjugal dwelling for a period of three months or has failed within the same period to give any information as to his or her whereabouts shall be prima facie presumed to have no intention of returning to the conjugal dwelling. (178a)

Section 6. Liquidation of the Absolute Community Assets and Liabilities

Art. 102. Upon dissolution of the absolute community regime, the following procedure shall apply:

(1) An inventory shall be prepared, listing separately all the properties of the absolute community and the exclusive properties of each spouse.

(2) The debts and obligations of the absolute community shall be paid out of its assets. In case of insufficiency of said assets, the spouses shall be solidarily liable for the unpaid balance with their separate properties in accordance with the provisions of the second paragraph of Article 94.

(3) Whatever remains of the exclusive properties of the spouses shall thereafter be delivered to each of them.

(4) The net remainder of the properties of the absolute community shall constitute its net assets, which shall be divided equally between husband and wife, unless a different proportion or division was agreed upon in the marriage settlements, or unless there has been a voluntary waiver of such share provided in this Code. For purpose of computing the net profits subject to forfeiture in accordance with Articles 43, No. (2) and 63, No. (2), the said profits shall be the increase in value between the market value of the community property at the time of the celebration of the marriage and the market value at the time of its dissolution.

(5) The presumptive legitimes of the common children shall be delivered upon partition, in accordance with Article 51.

(6) Unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties, in the partition of the properties, the conjugal dwelling and the lot on which it is situated shall be adjudicated to the spouse with whom the majority of the common children choose to remain.

Children below the age of seven years are deemed to have chosen the mother, unless the court has decided otherwise. In case there is no such majority, the court shall decide, taking into consideration the best interests of said children. (n)

Art. 103. Upon the termination of the marriage by death, the community property shall be liquidated in the same proceeding for the settlement of the estate of the deceased.

If no judicial settlement proceeding is instituted, the surviving spouse shall liquidate the community property either judicially or extra-judicially within six months from the death of the deceased spouse. If upon the lapse of the six months period, no liquidation is made, any disposition or encumbrance involving the community property of the terminated marriage shall be void.

Should the surviving spouse contract a subsequent marriage without complying with the foregoing requirements, a mandatory regime of complete separation of property shall govern the property relations of the subsequent marriage. (n)

Art. 104. Whenever the liquidation of the community properties of two or more marriages contracted by the same person before the effectivity of this Code is carried out simultaneously, the respective capital, fruits and income of each community shall be determined upon such proof as may be considered according to the rules of evidence. In case of doubt as to which community the existing properties belong, the same shall be divided between the different communities in proportion to the capital and duration of each. (189a)

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Chapter 4. Conjugal Partnership of Gains

Section 1. General Provisions

Art. 105. In case the future spouses agree in the marriage settlements that the regime of conjugal partnership of gains shall govern their property relations during marriage, the provisions in this Chapter shall be of supplementary application.

The provisions of this Chapter shall also apply to conjugal partnerships of gains already established between spouses before the effectivity of this Code, without prejudice to vested rights already acquired in accordance with the Civil Code or other laws, as provided in Article 256. (n)

Art. 106. Under the regime of conjugal partnership of gains, the husband and wife place in a common fund the proceeds, products, fruits and income from their separate properties and those acquired by either or both spouses through their efforts or by chance, and, upon dissolution of the marriage or of the partnership, the net gains or benefits obtained by either or both spouses shall be divided equally between them, unless otherwise agreed in the marriage settlements. (142a)

Art. 107. The rules provided in Articles 88 and 89 shall also apply to conjugal partnership of gains. (n)

Art. 108. The conjugal partnership shall be governed by the rules on the contract of partnership in all that is not in conflict with what is expressly determined in this Chapter or by the spouses in their marriage settlements. (147a)

Section 2. Exclusive Property of Each Spouse

Art. 109. The following shall be the exclusive property of each spouse:

(1) That which is brought to the marriage as his or her own;

(2) That which each acquires during the marriage by gratuitous title;

(3) That which is acquired by right of redemption, by barter or by exchange with property belonging to only one of the spouses; and

(4) That which is purchased with exclusive money of the wife or of the husband. (148a)

Art. 110. The spouses retain the ownership, possession, administration and enjoyment of their exclusive properties.

Either spouse may, during the marriage, transfer the administration of his or her exclusive property to the other by means of a public instrument, which shall be recorded in the registry of property of the place the property is located. (137a, 168a, 169a)

Art. 111. A spouse of age may mortgage, encumber, alienate or otherwise dispose of his or her exclusive property, without the consent of the other spouse, and appear alone in court to litigate with regard to the same. (n)

Art. 112. The alienation of any exclusive property of a spouse administered by the other automatically terminates the administration over such property and the proceeds of the alienation shall be turned over to the owner-spouse. (n)

Art. 113. Property donated or left by will to the spouses, jointly and with designation of determinate shares, shall pertain to the donee-spouse as his or her own exclusive property, and in the absence of designation, share and share alike, without prejudice to the right of accretion when proper. (150a)

Art. 114. If the donations are onerous, the amount of the charges shall be borne by the exclusive property of the donee spouse, whenever they have been advanced by the conjugal partnership of gains. (151a)

Art. 115. Retirement benefits, pensions, annuities, gratuities, usufructs and similar benefits shall be governed by the rules on gratuitous or onerous acquisitions as may be proper in each case. (n)

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Section 3. Conjugal Partnership Property

Art. 116. All property acquired during the marriage, whether the acquisition appears to have been made, contracted or registered in the name of one or both spouses, is presumed to be conjugal unless the contrary is proved. (160a)

Art. 117. The following are conjugal partnership properties:

(1) Those acquired by onerous title during the marriage at the expense of the common fund, whether the acquisition be for the partnership, or for only one of the spouses;

(2) Those obtained from the labor, industry, work or profession of either or both of the spouses;

(3) The fruits, natural, industrial, or civil, due or received during the marriage from the common property, as well as the net fruits from the exclusive property of each spouse;

(4) The share of either spouse in the hidden treasure which the law awards to the finder or owner of the property where the treasure is found;

(5) Those acquired through occupation such as fishing or hunting;

(6) Livestock existing upon the dissolution of the partnership in excess of the number of each kind brought to the marriage by either spouse; and

(7) Those which are acquired by chance, such as winnings from gambling or betting. However, losses therefrom shall be borne exclusively by the loser-spouse. (153a, 154a, 155, 159)

Art. 118. Property bought on installments paid partly from exclusive funds of either or both spouses and partly from conjugal funds belongs to the buyer or buyers if full ownership was vested before the marriage and to the conjugal partnership if such ownership was vested during the marriage. In either case, any amount advanced by the partnership or by either or both spouses shall be reimbursed by the owner or owners upon liquidation of the partnership. (n)

Art. 119. Whenever an amount or credit payable within a period of time belongs to one of the spouses, the sums which may be collected during the marriage in partial payments or by installments on the principal shall be the exclusive property of the spouse. However, interests falling due during the marriage on the principal shall belong to the conjugal partnership. (156a, 157a)

Art. 120. The ownership of improvements, whether for utility or adornment, made on the separate property of the spouses at the expense of the partnership or through the acts or efforts of either or both spouses shall pertain to the conjugal partnership, or to the original owner-spouse, subject to the following rules:

When the cost of the improvement made by the conjugal partnership and any resulting increase in value are more than the value of the property at the time of the improvement, the entire property of one of the spouses shall belong to the conjugal partnership, subject to reimbursement of the value of the property of the owner-spouse at the time of the improvement; otherwise, said property shall be retained in ownership by the owner-spouse, likewise subject to reimbursement of the cost of the improvement.

In either case, the ownership of the entire property shall be vested upon the reimbursement, which shall be made at the time of the liquidation of the conjugal partnership. (158a)

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Section 4. Charges Upon and Obligations of the Conjugal Partnership

Art. 121. The conjugal partnership shall be liable for:

(1) The support of the spouse, their common children, and the legitimate children of either spouse; however, the support of illegitimate children shall be governed by the provisions of this Code on Support;

(2) All debts and obligations contracted during the marriage by the designated administrator-spouse for the benefit of the conjugal partnership of gains, or by both spouses or by one of them with the consent of the other;

(3) Debts and obligations contracted by either spouse without the consent of the other to the extent that the family may have benefited;

(4) All taxes, liens, charges, and expenses, including major or minor repairs upon the conjugal partnership property;

(5) All taxes and expenses for mere preservation made during the marriage upon the separate property of either spouse;

(6) Expenses to enable either spouse to commence or complete a professional, vocational, or other activity for self-improvement;

(7) Ante-nuptial debts of either spouse insofar as they have redounded to the benefit of the family;

(8) The value of what is donated or promised by both spouses in favor of their common legitimate children for the exclusive purpose of commencing or completing a professional or vocational course or other activity for self-improvement; and

(9) Expenses of litigation between the spouses unless the suit is found to be groundless.

If the conjugal partnership is insufficient to cover the foregoing liabilities, the spouses shall be solidarily liable for the unpaid balance with their separate properties. (161a)

Art. 122. The payment of personal debts contracted by the husband or the wife before or during the marriage shall not be charged to the conjugal properties partnership except insofar as they redounded to the benefit of the family.

Neither shall the fines and pecuniary indemnities imposed upon them be charged to the partnership.

However, the payment of personal debts contracted by either spouse before the marriage, that of fines and indemnities imposed upon them, as well as the support of illegitimate children of either spouse, may be enforced against the partnership assets after the responsibilities enumerated in the preceding Article have been covered, if the spouse who is bound should have no exclusive property or if it should be insufficient; but at the time of the liquidation of the partnership, such spouse shall be charged for what has been paid for the purpose above-mentioned. (163a)

Art. 123. Whatever may be lost during the marriage in any game of chance or in betting, sweepstakes, or any other kind of gambling whether permitted or prohibited by law, shall be borne by the loser and shall not be charged to the conjugal partnership but any winnings therefrom shall form part of the conjugal partnership property. (164a)

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Section 5. Administration of the Conjugal Partnership Property

Art. 124. The administration and enjoyment of the conjugal partnership shall belong to both spouses jointly. In case of disagreement, the husband's decision shall prevail, subject to recourse to the court by the wife for proper remedy, which must be availed of within five years from the date of the contract implementing such decision.

In the event that one spouse is incapacitated or otherwise unable to participate in the administration of the conjugal properties, the other spouse may assume sole powers of administration. These powers do not include disposition or encumbrance without authority of the court or the written consent of the other spouse. In the absence of such authority or consent, the disposition or encumbrance shall be void. However, the transaction shall be construed as a continuing offer on the part of the consenting spouse and the third person, and may be perfected as a binding contract upon the acceptance by the other spouse or authorization by the court before the offer is withdrawn by either or both offerors. (165a)

Art. 125. Neither spouse may donate any conjugal partnership property without the consent of the other. However, either spouse may, without the consent of the other, make moderate donations from the conjugal partnership property for charity or on occasions of family rejoicing or family distress. (174a)

Section 6. Dissolution of Conjugal Partnership Regime

Art. 126. The conjugal partnership terminates:

(1) Upon the death of either spouse;

(2) When there is a decree of legal separation;

(3) When the marriage is annulled or declared void; or

(4) In case of judicial separation of property during the marriage under Articles 134 to 138. (175a)

Art. 127. The separation in fact between husband and wife shall not affect the regime of conjugal partnership, except that:

(1) The spouse who leaves the conjugal home or refuses to live therein, without just cause, shall not have the right to be supported;

(2) When the consent of one spouse to any transaction of the other is required by law, judicial authorization shall be obtained in a summary proceeding;

(3) In the absence of sufficient conjugal partnership property, the separate property of both spouses shall be solidarily liable for the support of the family.

The spouse present shall, upon petition in a summary proceeding, be given judicial authority to administer or encumber any specific separate property of the other spouse and use the fruits or proceeds thereof to satisfy the latter's share. (178a)

Art. 128. If a spouse without just cause abandons the other or fails to comply with his or her obligation to the family, the aggrieved spouse may petition the court for receivership, for judicial separation of property, or for authority to be the sole administrator of the conjugal partnership property, subject to such precautionary conditions as the court may impose.

The obligations to the family mentioned in the preceding paragraph refer to marital, parental or property relations.

A spouse is deemed to have abandoned the other when he or she has left the conjugal dwelling without intention of returning. The spouse who has left the conjugal dwelling for a period of three months or has failed within the same period to give any information as to his or her whereabouts shall be prima facie presumed to have no intention of returning to the conjugal dwelling. (167a, 191a)

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Section 7. Liquidation of the Conjugal Partnership Assets and Liabilities

Art. 129. Upon the dissolution of the conjugal partnership regime, the following procedure shall apply:

(1) An inventory shall be prepared, listing separately all the properties of the conjugal partnership and the exclusive properties of each spouse.

(2) Amounts advanced by the conjugal partnership in payment of personal debts and obligations of either spouse shall be credited to the conjugal partnership as an asset thereof.

(3) Each spouse shall be reimbursed for the use of his or her exclusive funds in the acquisition of property or for the value of his or her exclusive property, the ownership of which has been vested by law in the conjugal partnership.

(4) The debts and obligations of the conjugal partnership shall be paid out of the conjugal assets. In case of insufficiency of said assets, the spouses shall be solidarily liable for the unpaid balance with their separate properties, in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 121.

(5) Whatever remains of the exclusive properties of the spouses shall thereafter be delivered to each of them.

(6) Unless the owner had been indemnified from whatever source, the loss or deterioration of movables used for the benefit of the family, belonging to either spouse, even due to fortuitous event, shall be paid to said spouse from the conjugal funds, if any.

(7) The net remainder of the conjugal partnership properties shall constitute the profits, which shall be divided equally between husband and wife, unless a different proportion or division was agreed upon in the marriage settlements or unless there has been a voluntary waiver or forfeiture of such share as provided in this Code.

(8) The presumptive legitimes of the common children shall be delivered upon the partition in accordance with Article 51.

(9) In the partition of the properties, the conjugal dwelling and the lot on which it is situated shall, unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties, be adjudicated to the spouse with whom the majority of the common children choose to remain.

Children below the age of seven years are deemed to have chosen the mother, unless the court has decided otherwise. In case there is no such majority, the court shall decide, taking into consideration the best interests of said children. (181a, 182a, 183a, 184a, 185a)

Art. 130. Upon the termination of the marriage by death, the conjugal partnership property shall be liquidated in the same proceeding for the settlement of the estate of the deceased.

If no judicial settlement proceeding is instituted, the surviving spouse shall liquidate the conjugal partnership property either judicially or extra-judicially within six months from the death of the deceased spouse. If upon the lapse of the six-month period no liquidation is made, any disposition or encumbrance involving the conjugal partnership property of the terminated marriage shall be void.

Should the surviving spouse contract a subsequent marriage without complying with the foregoing requirements, a mandatory regime of complete separation of property shall govern the property relations of the subsequent marriage. (n)

Art. 131. Whenever the liquidation of the conjugal partnership properties of two or more marriages contracted by the same person before the effectivity of this Code is carried out simultaneously, the respective capital, fruits and income of each partnership shall be determined upon such proof as may be considered according to the rules of evidence. In case of doubt as to which partnership the existing properties belong, the same shall be divided between the different partnerships in proportion to the capital and duration of each. (189a)

Art. 132. The Rules of Court on the administration of estates of deceased persons shall be observed in the appraisal and sale of property of the conjugal partnership, and other matters which are not expressly determined in this Chapter. (187a)

Art. 133. From the common mass of property support shall be given to the surviving spouse and to the children during the liquidation of the inventoried property and until what belongs to them is delivered; but from this shall be deducted that amount received for support which exceeds the fruits or rents pertaining to them. (188a)

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Chapter 5. Separation of Property of the Spouses and Administration of Common Property by One Spouse During the Marriage

Art. 134. In the absence of an express declaration in the marriage settlements, the separation of property between spouses during the marriage shall not take place except by judicial order. Such judicial separation of property may either be voluntary or for sufficient cause. (190a)

Art. 135. Any of the following shall be considered sufficient cause for judicial separation of property:

(1) That the spouse of the petitioner has been sentenced to a penalty which carries with it civil interdiction;

(2) That the spouse of the petitioner has been judicially declared an absentee;

(3) That loss of parental authority of the spouse of petitioner has been decreed by the court;

(4) That the spouse of the petitioner has abandoned the latter or failed to comply with his or her obligations to the family as provided for in Article 101;

(5) That the spouse granted the power of administration in the marriage settlements has abused that power; and

(6) That at the time of the petition, the spouses have been separated in fact for at least one year and reconciliation is highly improbable.

In the cases provided for in Numbers (1), (2) and (3), the presentation of the final judgment against the guilty or absent spouse shall be enough basis for the grant of the decree of judicial separation of property. (191a)

Art. 136. The spouses may jointly file a verified petition with the court for the voluntary dissolution of the absolute community or the conjugal partnership of gains, and for the separation of their common properties.

All creditors of the absolute community or of the conjugal partnership of gains, as well as the personal creditors of the spouse, shall be listed in the petition and notified of the filing thereof. The court shall take measures to protect the creditors and other persons with pecuniary interest. (191a)

Art. 137. Once the separation of property has been decreed, the absolute community or the conjugal partnership of gains shall be liquidated in conformity with this Code.

During the pendency of the proceedings for separation of property, the absolute community or the conjugal partnership shall pay for the support of the spouses and their children. (192a)

Art. 138. After dissolution of the absolute community or of the conjugal partnership, the provisions on complete separation of property shall apply. (191a)

Art. 139. The petition for separation of property and the final judgment granting the same shall be recorded in the proper local civil registries and registries of property. (193a)

Art. 140. The separation of property shall not prejudice the rights previously acquired by creditors. (194a)

Art. 141. The spouses may, in the same proceedings where separation of property was decreed, file a motion in court for a decree reviving the property regime that existed between them before the separation of property in any of the following instances:

(1) When the civil interdiction terminates;

(2) When the absentee spouse reappears;

(3) When the court, being satisfied that the spouse granted the power of administration in the marriage settlements will not again abuse that power, authorizes the resumption of said administration;

(4) When the spouse who has left the conjugal home without a decree of legal separation resumes common life with the other;

(5) When parental authority is judicially restored to the spouse previously deprived thereof;

(6) When the spouses who have separated in fact for at least one year, reconcile and resume common life; or

(7) When after voluntary dissolution of the absolute community of property or conjugal partnership has been judicially decreed upon the joint petition of the spouses, they agree to the revival of the former property regime. No voluntary separation of property may thereafter be granted.

The revival of the former property regime shall be governed by Article 67. (195a)

Art. 142. The administration of all classes of exclusive property of either spouse may be transferred by the court to the other spouse:

(1) When one spouse becomes the guardian of the other;

(2) When one spouse is judicially declared an absentee;

(3) When one spouse is sentenced to a penalty which carries with it civil interdiction; or

(4) When one spouse becomes a fugitive from justice or is in hiding as an accused in a criminal case.

If the other spouse is not qualified by reason of incompetence, conflict of interest, or any other just cause, the court shall appoint a suitable person to be the administrator. (n)

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Chapter 6. Regime of Separation of Property

Art. 143. Should the future spouses agree in the marriage settlements that their property relations during marriage shall be governed by the regime of separation of property, the provisions of this Chapter shall be suppletory. (212a)

Art. 144. Separation of property may refer to present or future property or both. It may be total or partial. In the latter case, the property not agreed upon as separate shall pertain to the absolute community. (213a)

Art. 145. Each spouse shall own, dispose of, possess, administer and enjoy his or her own separate estate, without need of the consent of the other. To each spouse shall belong all earnings from his or her profession, business or industry and all fruits, natural, industrial or civil, due or received during the marriage from his or her separate property. (214a)

Art. 146. Both spouses shall bear the family expenses in proportion to their income, or, in case of insufficiency or default thereof, to the current market value of their separate properties.

The liabilities of the spouses to creditors for family expenses shall, however, be solidary. (215a)

Chapter 7. Property Regime of Unions Without Marriage

Art. 147. When a man and a woman who are capacitated to marry each other, live exclusively with each other as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage or under a void marriage, their wages and salaries shall be owned by them in equal shares and the property acquired by both of them through their work or industry shall be governed by the rules on co-ownership.

In the absence of proof to the contrary, properties acquired while they lived together shall be presumed to have been obtained by their joint efforts, work or industry, and shall be owned by them in equal shares. For purposes of this Article, a party who did not participate in the acquisition by the other party of any property shall be deemed to have contributed jointly in the acquisition thereof if the former's efforts consisted in the care and maintenance of the family and of the household.

Neither party can encumber or dispose by acts inter vivos of his or her share in the property acquired during cohabitation and owned in common, without the consent of the other, until after the termination of their cohabitation.

When only one of the parties to a void marriage is in good faith, the share of the party in bad faith in the co-ownership shall be forfeited in favor of their common children. In case of default of or waiver by any or all of the common children or their descendants, each vacant share shall belong to the respective surviving descendants. In the absence of descendants, such share shall belong to the innocent party. In all cases, the forfeiture shall take place upon termination of the cohabitation. (144a)

Art. 148. In cases of cohabitation not falling under the preceding Article, only the 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 the absence of proof to the contrary, their contributions and corresponding shares are presumed to be equal. The same rule and presumption shall apply to joint deposits of money and evidences of credit.

If one of the parties is validly married to another, his or her share in the co-ownership shall accrue to the absolute community or conjugal partnership existing in such valid marriage. If the party who acted in bad faith is not validly married to another, his or her share shall be forfeited in the manner provided in the last paragraph of the preceding Article.

The foregoing rules on forfeiture shall likewise apply even if both parties are in bad faith. (144a).

 

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