Supreme Court in a decision promulgated on August 3, 1954. The Court of First Instance, by decision of June 20, 1958,found that the will was genuine and properly executed; butdeferred resolution on the questions of estoppel and revocation"until such time when we shall pass upon the intrinsic validity ofthe provisions of the will or when the question of adjudicationof the properties is opportunely presented."The appellate Court held that the decree of June 20, 1958,admitting the will to probate, had become final for lack ofopportune appeal; that the same was appealableindependently of the issue of implied revocation.ISSUE:(a) Whether or not the decree of the Court of First Instanceallowing the will to probate had become final for lack of appeal.YES(b) Whether or not the order of the Court of origin dated July27, 1959, overruling the estoppel invoked by oppositors-appellants had likewise become final. NORULING:a.YES. It is elementary that a probate decree finally anddefinitively settles all questions concerning capacity ofthe testator and the proper execution and witnessingof his last will and testament, irrespective of whetherits provisions are valid and enforceable or otherwise.(Montañano vs. Suesa, 14 Phil. 676; Mercado vs.Santos, 66 Phil. 215; Trillana vs. Crisostomo, 89 Phil.710). As such, the probate order is final andappealable; and it is so recognized by expressprovisions of Section 1 of Rule 109, that specificallyprescribes that "any interested person may appeal inspecial proceedings from an order or judgment . . .where such order or judgment: (a) allows or disallowsa will."There being no controversy that the probate decree of theCourt below was not appealed on time, the same had becomefinal and conclusive. Hence, the appellate courts may nolonger revoke said decree nor review the evidence upon whichit is made to rest. Thus, the appeal belatedly lodged againstthe decree was correctly dismissed.b.As to the issue of estoppel, we have already ruled inGuevara vs. Guevara, 98 Phil. 249, that thepresentation and probate of a will are requirements ofpublic policy, being primarily designed to protect thetestator's, expressed wishes, which are entitled torespect as a consequence of the decedent'sownership and right of disposition within legal limits.Evidence of it is the dutyimposed on a custodian of awill to deliver the same to the Court, and the fine andimprisonment prescribed for its violation (RevisedRule 75). It would be a non sequiturto allow publicpolicy to be evaded on the pretext of estoppel.Whether or not the order overruling the allegation of
R U L E 7 5 | 4estoppel is still appealable or not, the defense ispatently unmeritorious and the Court of Appealscorrectly so ruled.6. G.R. No. L-23445 June 23, 1966REMEDIOSNUGUID,petitionerandappellant, vs.FELIX NUGUID and PAZ SALONGA NUGUID,oppositors andappellees.