Sunday, September 26, 2021

Kalaw vs. Relova


G.R. No. L-40207 September 28, 1984

ROSA K. KALAW, petitioner,
HON. JUDGE BENJAMIN RELOVA, Presiding Judge of the CFI of Batangas, Branch VI, Lipa City, and GREGORIO K. KALAW, respondents.


Natividad K. Kalaw’s first written holographic will named ROSA K. Kalaw, her sister as her sole heir. On September 1, 1971, private respondent GREGORIO K. KALAW, claiming to be the sole heir filed a petition before the Court of First Instance for probate of the will. ROSA K. Kalaw opposed probate alleging, in substance, that the holographic Will contained alterations, corrections, and insertions without the proper authentication by the full signature of the testatrix as required by Article 814 of the Civil Code.

Art. 814 states that “In case of any insertion, cancellation, erasure or alteration in a holographic will the testator must authenticate the same by his full signature.”

The probate was denied by the CFI finding the insertions, alterations and/or additions in the will not to be authenticated by the full signature of the testatrix. MR was denied hence this petition.


Whether or not the holographic will should be admitted to probate.


No. Probate was denied.

The SC held that ordinarily, when a number of erasures, corrections, and interlineations made by the testator in a holographic Will have not been noted under his signature, ... the Will is not thereby invalidated as a whole, but at most only as respects the particular words erased, corrected or interlined. 

However, when as in this case, the holographic Will in dispute had only one substantial provision, which was altered by substituting the original heir with another, but which alteration did not carry the requisite of full authentication by the full signature of the testator, the effect must be that the entire Will is voided or revoked for the simple reason that nothing remains in the Will after that which could remain valid.

To state that the Will as first written should be given efficacy is to disregard the seeming change of mind of the testatrix. But that change of mind can neither be given effect because she failed to authenticate it in the manner required by law by affixing her full signature.

The Decision of respondent Judge was affirmed.



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