Summary action for recovery of possession of real property
"I have a condominium unit rented by Aries .We agreed through a contract of lease that the unit will be leased for one year and the payment shall be given on a monthly basis. Upon expiration of the contract, we also agreed verbally that he will continue with the lease of my property until I decided to use the condominium unit myself. Recently, I asked Aries to vacate the leased unit because he wasn’t able to pay on time for the past two months. He argued, however, that he was advised by his lawyer to tell me that I can no longer compel him to vacate the property since there was already the” tacita reconduccion.”
He explained that since I allowed him to continue to use the leased condominium unit, I am already estopped to compel him to vacate the unit for non-payment of monthly dues on time. He said I can no longer collect rentals, because I no longer owned the subject leased condominium unit. I explained to him that I am still the owner of the unit but he won’t believe me. I suspect that it is his dilatory tactic to delay the payment.I am not an expert on technicalities of the contract of lease we executed. Can you please advise me on my issue with my tenant because I have no idea what tacita reconduccion is all about? Can I file a civil case against Aries to compel him to leave the subject leased condominium unit?
Mr. ABCDear Mr. ABC,
Yes, you may file a civil case against Aries. It is undisputed that you and Aries executed a contract of lease over the disputed condominium unit. Upon expiration of the contract, however, both of you agreed that the contract shall be extended. Thus, an implied new lease was therefore created pursuant to Article 1670 of the Civil Code, which expressly provides:“Article 1670. If at the end of the contract the lessee should continue enjoying the thing leased for fifteen days with the acquiescence of the lessor, and unless a notice to the contrary by either party has previously been given, it is understood that there is an implied new lease, not for the period of the original contract, but for the time established in Articles 1682 and 1687. The other terms of the original contract shall be revived.”
Moreover, Article 1687 of the law on implied new lease states:“Article 1687. If the period for the lease has not been fixed, it is understood to be from year to year, if the rent agreed upon is annual from month to month, if it is monthly from week to week, if the rent is weekly and from day to day, if the rent is to be paid daily.”It may be emphasized that since the rent was paid on a monthly basis, considering that Aries was not able to pay on time for the last two (2) months, the period of lease is considered to be from month to month, in accordance with Article 1687 of the above-mentioned law. A lease from month to month is considered to be one with a definite period, which expires at the end of each month upon a demand to vacate by the lessor.In the case of Viegly Samelo, et al. vs. Manotok Services, Inc., et al. (G.R. No. 170509, June 27, 2012 ponente, former Associate Justice Arturo Brion), the Supreme Court enunciated that “an implied new lease or tacita reconduccion will set in when the following requisites are found to exist: a) the term of the original contract of lease has expired b) the lessor has not given the lessee a notice to vacate and c) the lessee continued enjoying the thing leased for fifteen days with the acquiescence of the lessor.” Based on the foregoing, all the requisites are present in your case.
When you informed Aries to vacate the leased premises, however, the tacita reconduccion was aborted, and your agreement with the latter is deemed to have expired at the end of the month. Such notice to vacate is a clear indication of an express act on your part that you no longer consent to the continued occupation by the lessee of your property. After such notice, the continued possession of the leased premises is a ground for a complaint for unlawful detainer.The Supreme Court in its decision in the case of Fiorello R. Jose vs. Roberto Alfuerto, et al. (G.R. No. 169380, November 26, 2012 ponente: former Associate Justice Arturo Brion) also explained the key issue to an action for unlawful detainer:“Unlawful detainer is a summary action for the recovery of possession of real property. This action may be filed by a lessor, vendor, vendee or other person against whom the possession of any land or building is unlawfully withheld after the expiration or termination of the right to hold possession by virtue of any contract, express or implied. In unlawful detainer, the possession of the defendant was originally legal, as his possession was permitted by the plaintiff on account of an express or implied contract between them. The defendant’s possession, however, became illegal when the plaintiff demanded that the defendant vacate the subject property because of the expiration or termination of the right to possess under the contract, and the defendant refused to heed such demand. A case for unlawful detainer must be instituted one year from the unlawful withholding of possession.”Based on the facts given, your case is already ripe for filing the complaint for unlawful detainer.We hope that we were able to enlighten you on your queries. Please be reminded that this advice is based solely on the facts that you have narrated and our appreciation of the same. Our opinion may vary when other facts are changed or elaborated."
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"Summary action for recovery of possession of real property"
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and updated on 15 September 2021