Article 1311Republic of the PhilippinesSupreme CourtManilaSECOND DIVISIONHEIRS OF MARIO PACRES,namely: VALENTINA Vda. DEPACRES, JOSERINO, ELENA,LEOVIGILDO,LELISA,andLOURDES all surnamed PACRES,and VEARANDA Vda. DE ABABA,G.R. No. 174719Present:Petitioners,CARPIO, J., Chairperson,BRION,- versus -DEL CASTILLO,ABAD, andPEREZ, JJ.HEIRS of CECILIA YGOA, namelyBAUDILLO YGOA YAP, MARIAYAP DETUYA, JOSEFINA YAP,EGYPTIANA YAP BANZON, andVICENTE YAPand HILARIORAMIREZ,Promulgated:Respondents.May 5, 2010x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - xD E C I S I O NDEL CASTILLO, J.:
While contracts are generally obligatory in whatever form they may have been enteredinto, it remains imperative for a party that seeks the performance thereof to prove theexistence and the terms of the contract by a preponderance of evidence. Bare assertionsare not the quantum of proof contemplated by law.This Petition for Reviewassails the Decisiondated October 28, 2005 of the Court ofAppeals (CA), as well as its ResolutiondatedAugust 31, 2006. The dispositive portionof the assailed Decision reads:WHEREFORE, with the foregoing, the Decision of the Regional Trial Court, 7thJudicialRegion, Branch 13, Cebu City dated March 15, 2000 in Civil Case No. 18819 forSpecific Performance, Damages and Attorneys Fees is hereby SET ASIDE and a newone entered DISMISSING said case for failure to establish the causes of action with therequired quantum of proof.No pronouncement as to cost.SO ORDERED.Factual AntecedentsLot No. 9 is a 1,007 square meter parcel of land located at Kinasang-an,Pardo, Cebu City and fronting the Cebu provincial highway. The lot originally belongedto Pastor Pacres (Pastor) who left it intestate to his heirsMargarita, Simplicia, Rodrigo,Francisco, Mario (petitioners predecessor-in-interest) and Vearanda (hereinpetitioner). Petitioners admitted that at the time of Pastors death in 1962, his heirs werealready occupying definite portions of Lot No. 9. The front portion along the provincialhighway was occupied by the co-owned Pacres ancestral home,and beside it stoodRodrigos hut (also fronting the provincial highway). Marios house stood at the back ofthe ancestral house.This is how the property stood in 1968, as confirmed by petitionerValentinas testimony.
On the same year, the heirs leasedthe ground floor of the [ancestral home]together with a lot area of 300 square meters including the area occupied by the house torespondent Hilario Ramirez (Ramirez), who immediately took possessionthereof. Subsequently in 1974, four of the Pacres siblings(namely, Rodrigo, Francisco,Simplicia and Margarita) sold their shares in the ancestral home and the lot on which itstood to Ramirez. The deeds of sale described the subjects thereof as part and portion ofthe 300 square meters actually in possession and enjoymentby vendee and her spouse,Hilario Ramirez, by virtue of a contract of lease in their favor.The Deed of Sale ofRight in a House executed by Rodrigo and Francisco was more detailed, to wit:x x x do hereby sell, cede, transfer and convey, forever and in absolute manner, our shares