Art. 484. There is co-ownership whenever the ownership of an undivided thing or right belongs to different persons. In default of contracts, or of special provisions, co-ownership shall be governed by the provisions of this Title. (392)


 State where an undivided thing or right belongs to two or more persons
 Right of common dominion which 2 or more persons have over a spiritual, ideal part of a thing which is not physically divided


1. By law
2. By contract
3. By chance
4. By occupation or occupancy
5. By succession or will


 There must be more than one subject or owner
 There is one physical whole divioded into ideal shares
 Each ideal share is definite in amount but is not physically segregated from the rest
 Regarding the physical whole, each co-owner must respect each other in the common use, enjoyment, or preservation of the physical whole
 Regarding the ideal share, each co-owner holds almost absolute control over the same
 It is not a juridical person
 There is no mutual agency
 There is no extinguishment upon the death of any co-owner
 A co-owner is in a sense a trustee for the other co-owners

Art. 485. The share of the co-owners, in the benefits as well as in the charges, shall be proportional to their respective interests. Any stipulation in a contract to the contrary shall be void. The portions belonging to the co-owners in the co-ownership shall be presumed equal, unless the contrary is proved. (393a)


 Share is proportional to the interest of each
 Contrary stipulation is void
 Each co-owner shares proportionately in the accretion or alluvium of the property

Art. 486. Each co-owner may use the thing owned in common, provided he does so in accordance with the purpose for which it is intended and in such a way as not to injure the interest of the co-ownership or prevent the other co-owners from using it according to their rights. The purpose of the co-ownership may be changed by agreement, express or implied. (394a)


 The interest of the co-ownership must be impaired or prejudiced
 And the co-owners must not be prevented from using it

Art. 487. Any one of the co-owners may bring an action in ejectment. (n)

Art. 488. Each co-owner shall have a right to compel the other co-owners to contribute to the expenses of preservation of the thing or right owned in common and to the taxes. Any one of the latter may exempt himself from this obligation by renouncing so much of his undivided interest as may be equivalent to his share of the expenses and taxes. No such waiver shall be made if it is prejudicial to the co-ownership. (395a)


 A co-owner has a right to compel the others to share in the expenses of preservation, even if incurred without prior
notification to them but he must notify if practicable
 Covers only necessary expenses


 By renouncing so much of his undivided share as may be equivalent to the share of the expenses and taxes

Art. 489. Repairs for preservation may be made at the will of one of the co-owners, but he must, if practicable, first notify his co-owners of the necessity for such repairs. Expenses to improve or embellish the thing shall be decided upon by a majority as determined in Article 492. (n)


1. ACTS OF PRESERVATION—no consent requirement
2. ACTS OF ADMINISTRATION—financial majority
3. ACTS OF ALTERATION—all must consent

Art. 490. Whenever the different stories of a house belong to different owners, if the titles of ownership do not specify the terms under which they should contribute to the necessary expenses and there exists no agreement on the subject, the following rules shall be observed:

(1) The main and party walls, the roof and the other things used in common, shall be preserved at the expense of all the
owners in proportion to the value of the story belonging to each;

(2) Each owner shall bear the cost of maintaining the floor of his story; the floor of the entrance, front door, common yard and sanitary works common to all, shall be maintained at the expense of all the owners pro rata;
(3) The stairs from the entrance to the first story shall be
maintained at the expense of all the owners pro rata, with the
exception of the owner of the ground floor; the stairs from the first
to the second story shall be preserved at the expense of all, except
the owner of the ground floor and the owner of the first story; and
so on successively. (396)
 Different stories belong to different owners
Art. 491. None of the co-owners shall, without the consent of the
others, make alterations in the thing owned in common, even
though benefits for all would result therefrom. However, if the
withholding of the consent by one or more of the co-owners is
clearly prejudicial to the common interest, the courts may afford
adequate relief. (397a)
1. Change which is more or less permanent
2. Which changes the use of the thing
3. Which prejudices the condition of the thing or its enjoyment by
Art. 492. For the administration and better enjoyment of the thing
owned in common, the resolutions of the majority of the co-owners
shall be binding.
There shall be no majority unless the resolution is approved by the
co-owners who represent the controlling interest in the object of
the co-ownership.
Should there be no majority, or should the resolution of the
majority be seriously prejudicial to those interested in the property
owned in common, the court, at the instance of an interested party,
shall order such measures as it may deem proper, including the
appointment of an administrator.
Whenever a part of the thing belongs exclusively to one of the coowners,
and the remainder is owned in common, the preceding
provision shall apply only to the part owned in common. (398)
NOTE: An act of administration pertains to management and useful
Art. 493. Each co-owner shall have the full ownership of his part
and of the fruits and benefits pertaining thereto, and he may
therefore alienate, assign or mortgage it, and even substitute
another person in its enjoyment, except when personal rights are
involved. But the effect of the alienation or the mortgage, with
respect to the co-owners, shall be limited to the portion which may
be alloted to him in the division upon the termination of the coownership.
 Deals nto with the right to the whole property but only with the
right to the IDEAL or metaphysical share of each co-owner
1. Each co-owner must have full ownership of his part and his share
of the fruits and benefits
2. He may alienate, assign or mortgage his ideal share but of course
without prejudice to the exercise of the others of their right of
legal redemption
3. He may even substitute another person for the enjoyment except
when personal rights are involved
4. He may exempt himself from necessary expenses and taxes by
renouncing part of his interest in the co-ownership

Art. 494. No co-owner shall be obliged to remain in the coownership.
Each co-owner may demand at any time the partition of
the thing owned in common, insofar as his share is concerned.
Nevertheless, an agreement to keep the thing undivided for a
certain period of time, not exceeding ten years, shall be valid. This
term may be extended by a new agreement.
A donor or testator may prohibit partition for a period which shall
not exceed twenty years.
Neither shall there be any partition when it is prohibited by law.
No prescription shall run in favor of a co-owner or co-heir against
his co-owners or co-heirs so long as he expressly or impliedly
recognizes the co-ownership. (400a)
1. If by agreement, for a period not exceeding 10 years, partition is
2. When partition is prohibited by the donor or testator, for a period
not exceeding 20 years
3. When partition is prohibited by law
4. When a physical partition would render the property unserviceable
but in this case, the property may be allotted to one of the coowners
5. When the legal nature of the common property doesn't allow
1. Period must not extend more than 10 years
2. If it exceeds 10 years, the stipulation is valid insofar as the first
10 years is concerned
3. There can be an extension but only after the original period has
4. After the first extension, there can be another, and so on
indefinitely, as long as for each extension, the period of 10 years
is not exceeded
1. Clear and unequivocal act of repudiation of the co-ownership
2. Act of repudiation must be made known
3. Clear and convincing evidence
4. Other requirements of prescription—open, continuous, exclusive,
notorious, adverse, public possession in the concept of owner
Art. 495. Notwithstanding the provisions of the preceding article,
the co-owners cannot demand a physical division of the thing
owned in common, when to do so would render it unserviceable for
the use for which it is intended. But the co-ownership may be
terminated in accordance with Article 498. (401a)
Art. 496. Partition may be made by agreement between the parties
or by judicial proceedings. Partition shall be governed by the Rules
of Court insofar as they are consistent with this Code. (402)
1. Is there co-ownership?
2. Are they the co-owners?
3. What are their respective shares?
4. What would be the allocation?
Art. 497. The creditors or assignees of the co-owners may take part
in the division of the thing owned in common and object to its
being effected without their concurrence. But they cannot impugn
any partition already executed, unless there has been fraud, or in
case it was made notwithstanding a formal opposition presented to
prevent it, without prejudice to the right of the debtor or assignor
to maintain its validity. (403)
Art. 498. Whenever the thing is essentially indivisible and the coowners
cannot agree that it be allotted to one of them who shall
indemnify the others, it shall be sold and its proceeds distributed.
1. First, give the whole to one of the co-owners who will now be
required to indemnify the rest
2. If this is not agreed upon, there must be a sale
Art. 499. The partition of a thing owned in common shall not
prejudice third persons, who shall retain the rights of mortgage,
servitude or any other real rights belonging to them before thedivision was made. Personal rights pertaining to third persons
against the co-ownership shall also remain in force,
notwithstanding the partition. (405)
Art. 500. Upon partition, there shall be a mutual accounting for
benefits received and reimbursements for expenses made.
Likewise, each co-owner shall pay for damages caused by reason of
his negligence or fraud. (n)
1. Mutual accounting for benefits
2. Mutual reimbursement for expenses
3. Indemnity for damages in case of negligence or fraud
4. Reciprocal warranty for defects of title or quality
5. Each former co-owner is deemed to have had exclusive possession
of his part allotted to him for the entire period during which the
co-possession lasted
Art. 501. Every co-owner shall, after partition, be liable for defects
of title and quality of the portion assigned to each of the other coowners.
Art. 1620. A co-owner of a thing may exercise the right of
redemption in case the shares of all the other co-owners or of any
of them, are sold to a third person. If the price of the alienation is
grossly excessive, the redemptioner shall pay only a reasonable
Should two or more co-owners desire to exercise the right of
redemption, they may only do so in proportion to the share they
may respectively have in the thing owned in common. (1522a)
Art. 1623. The right of legal pre-emption or redemption shall not be
exercised except within thirty days from the notice in writing by
the prospective vendor, or by the vendor, as the case may be. The
deed of sale shall not be recorded in the Registry of Property,
unless accompanied by an affidavit of the vendor that he has given
written notice thereof to all possible redemptioners.
The right of redemption of co-owners excludes that of adjoining
owners. (1524a)
Art. 1647. If a lease is to be recorded in the Registry of Property,
the following persons cannot constitute the same without proper
authority: the husband with respect to the wife's paraphernal real
estate, the father or guardian as to the property of the minor or
ward, and the manager without special power. (1548a)
Art. 1648. Every lease of real estate may be recorded in the
Registry of Property. Unless a lease is recorded, it shall not be
binding upon third persons. (1549a)
Art. 1878. Special powers of attorney are necessary in the
following cases:
(1) To make such payments as are not usually considered as
acts of administration;
(2) To effect novations which put an end to obligations already
in existence at the time the agency was constituted;
(3) To compromise, to submit questions to arbitration, to
renounce the right to appeal from a judgment, to waive objections
to the venue of an action or to abandon a prescription already
(4) To waive any obligation gratuitously;
(5) To enter into any contract by which the ownership of an
immovable is transmitted or acquired either gratuitously or for a
valuable consideration;
(6) To make gifts, except customary ones for charity or those
made to employees in the business managed by the agent;
(7) To loan or borrow money, unless the latter act be urgent
and indispensable for the preservation of the things which are
under administration;
(8) To lease any real property to another person for more than
one year;
(9) To bind the principal to render some service without
(10) To bind the principal in a contract of partnership;
(11) To obligate the principal as a guarantor or surety;

(12) To create or convey real rights over immovable property;
(13) To accept or repudiate an inheritance;
(14) To ratify or recognize obligations contracted before the
(15) Any other act of strict dominion. (n)