Reconstitution of Title (Steps, Requirements and costs for Administrative and Judicial processes)

What is Reconstitution of Title?

 

Reconstitution of Title restores the Registry of Deed’s Title of the land when that title has been destroyed and can be done either judicially or administratively. (If you have lost your Original Owner’s Land Title, read our post on Reissuance of Title instead.)

·         Judicial Reconstitution is used when Administrative Reconstitution is not possible

·         Administrative Reconstitution is used when at least 10% of the RD’s were destroyed or lost due to fire, flood or force majeure but should be in no case less than 500. It is only available if the RD states your title is eligible for it

Note that Reconstitution of Title is very important to do –

Even if you have an Owner’s Certificate of Title, you should reconstitute the RD’s copy as it is the main document that proves your ownership.

The RD’s file of your document is the document that banks, buyers and other institutions will refer to when determining who owns the title.

Without the RD’s file confirming your ownership, your ownership can be questioned.

What is the law on Reconstitution of Title?

 

Reconstitution of Title is based on the following laws:

·         RA 26 Reconstitution

·         PD 1529 Property Registration Decree

·         RA 6732 Administrative Reconstitution of Title

·         LRA Circular 13 which further explains the Administrative Reconstitution of Title

1: Administrative Reconstitution of Title

 

Who can file an Administrative Reconstitution of Title?

 

Administrative Reconstitution of title can be filed by the owner, his heirs, persons having an interesting claim or interest in the property or their authorized representatives.

Administrative Reconstitution can only be filed when the Registry of Deeds states that your title is available for administrative reconstitution.

If the Registry of Deeds does not list your property as available for Administrative Reconstitution, then you must file for Judicial Reconstitution of Title.

What are the requirements for an Administrative Reconstitution of Title?

The requirements for an Administrative Reconstitution of Title are the Original Owner’s Copy of Title, supporting documents from the City Assessor and an Affidavit of the owner.

In detail, these requirements are:

·         Original Owner’s Copy of Title (not a photocopy)

·         3 copies of the LRA Petition for Reconstitution form

·         3 copies of the notarized Affidavit under LRA Circular 13

·         3 copies of the latest tax declaration and 3 copies of the tax clearance

·         Other documents may be required such as an Extrajudicial Settlement, Deed of Absolute Sale, Deed of Donation, Cadastral map, PSA birth and death certificates, etc.

You might have noticed that Administrative Reconstitution only accepts an Original Owner’s Copy of Title.

Judicial Reconstitution vs Administrative Reconstitution accepts more documents as basis for the reconstitution.

If you do not have the Original Owner’s Copy of Title even if your land is eligible for Administrative Reconstitution of Title, you will have to go to court and must discuss with a Land Lawyer.

 

Where do I file for Administrative Reconstitution of Title?

Administrative Reconstitution of Title is filed at one of the below 14 authorized RDs:

·         Quezon City

·         Bulacan

·         Valenzuela

·         Meycauayan

·         Batangas

·         Camarines Sur

·         Iriga

·         Calapan, Oriental Mindoro

·         Borongan, Eastern Samar

·         Ilagan, Isabela

·         Palo, Leyte

·         La Union

·         Pampanga

·         Sultan Kudarat

 

What is the process for an Administrative Reconstitution of Title?

The process for an Administrative Reconstitution of Title is submission of documents at the RD, checking and forwarding technical information at the LRA, and then the order to reconstitute the title to the concerned RDs.

Administrative Reconstitution of Title process

·         Client files requirements for Administrative Reconstitution of Title at the authorized RD. Note that there are only 14 currently authorized RDs.

·         RD checks the petition and forwards it to the Reconstitution Division

·         Reconstitution Division

o   receives, logs, checks petition

o   checks the technical description

o   counterchecks with the Plan Division, Ordinary Decree Section, Cadastral Section and gets further information from other government agencies to ensure all the information is accurate

o   Inaccuracies between these documents will cause delay.

·         If assessment is complete and without issues, Reconstitution Division informs concerned RD of the Order to Reconstitute.

People often believe that judicial reconstitution vs administrative reconstitution is longer.

However, they can actually take about the same amount of time especially if there is conflicting data that needs to be resolved.

Expect the process to take at least a year.

What is the cost for Administrative Reconstitution of Title?

Administrative Reconstitution of title costs are from gathering the required documents and filing the petition. There are no government fees. 

2: Judicial Reconstitution of Title

 

Who can file for Judicial Reconstitution of Title?

 

The owner, his heirs or a person who has an interest in the party such as a mortgagee who has loaned money against the property may file for a Reconstitution of Title.

 

What is the Judicial Reconstitution of Title requirements?

 

Judicial Reconstitution of Title requirements can draw on the following sources:

  • Owner’s duplicate certificate of title
  • Co-owner, mortgagee’s, or lessee’s duplicate certificate of title
  • A Certified True Copy of the title from the RD
  • If a Transfer Certificate of Title is to be Reconstituted, the CTC deed of transfer filed in RD which was the basis for the lost certificate of title.
  • If an Original Certificate of Title is to be Reconstituted, the CTC patent or registration which was the basis for the lost certificate of title
  • A document by which the property is mortgaged, leased or encumbered filed at the RD
  • Any other document to prove a valid claim

Judicial Reconstitution vs Administrative Reconstitution thus allows for more documents.

Note that your land lawyer will need reliable documents so that the concerns of the court are met. Reliable documents are those that the court can trust – i.e. certified true copies of documents from reputable institutions.

 

Where do I file a Judicial Reconstitution of Title?

 

A Judicial Reconstitution of Title can be filed at the Regional Trial Court where the property is located.

 

What is the process for Judicial Reconstitution of Title?

 

The process for Judicial Reconstitution of Title is the submission of the petition at the RTC, the hearing, and then the release of the decision.

In full, the process is:

  • Gathering of the Judicial Reconstitution of title requirements and all documents
  • Land Lawyer creates Petition and attaches supporting documents
  • Land Lawyer completes publication at the Official Gazette and completes service of all interested parties
  • Jurisdictional Hearing
  • Presentation of Evidence with witness testimony
  • Formal offer
  • Filing of Decision
  • Registration of Decisions at concerned government agencies

Judicial reconstitution vs administrative reconstitution have very different processes and venues.

However, both are similar in terms of the time of completion from filing to a decision. Both take about a year.

 

What is the cost for Judicial Reconstitution of Title?

 

The cost for Judicial Reconstitution vs Administrative Reconstitution is higher due to the land lawyer’s fees, publication fees, service to respondents fees, document gathering fees, court fees and other fees.

If the petition is challenged, then costs will increase.

Costs vary depending on your land lawyer’s fees and the location of the property – but think of it as roughly one-half of the cost of annulment in that area.

FAQs on Reconstitution of Title

 

What is the effect if a title is reconstituted but in fact it is not lost?

 

If a title is reconstituted but is in fact not lost – for example, it is with a relative that refuses to give it back, then the new title can be declared void.

If this is your situation, talk to a Land Lawyer to discuss what your options are.

 

How long does it take to change the name on a Land Title?

 

Reconstitution cannot change a name on a Land Title as all reconstitution does is allow the lost certificate of title to be restored exactly as it was.

If you must correct a factual error on the Land Title, you should speak with a Land lawyer to see if you can amend your title.

 

How do I remove an adverse claim from my title?

 

Reconstitution does not remove an adverse claim or an annotation on title as it just allows the title to be restored exactly as it was.

Talk to a lawyer to remove an adverse claim on the land title.

 

Can I do Administrative Reconstitution instead of Judicial Reconstitution?

 

Administrative Reconstitution is only available if the RD states that your title is eligible for Administrative Reconstitution and if you have the Original Owner’s Copy of Tile.

Otherwise, you must do a Judicial Reconstitution of Title.

 

Can I use a photocopy of the Owner’s Original Copy of Title for Reconstitution?

 

A photocopy of the Owner’s Original Copy of Title is very weak evidence.

An Administrative Reconstitution requires an Owner’s Original Copy of Title.

Judicial Reconstitution of Title requirements are a bit more flexible but if this is your only proof this is very risky.

Speak to a land lawyer if that is the situation.

 

What is the difference between Judicial Reconstitution vs Administrative Reconstitution?

 

There are several differences between Judicial Reconstitution vs Administrative Reconstitution.

Judicial reconstitution is:

  • A court case filed at the RTC
  • More expensive
  • Accepts more documents as source documents

By contrast, administrative reconstitution is filed at the RD, has minimal cost and only accepts the Original Owner’s True Copy of Title.

I know that it seems that the Administrative process should be faster.

However, Judicial Reconstitution vs Administrative Reconstitution takes about the same time from filing to Decision. (However, the court case will take longer if there is opposition. Likewise, the administrative case will be longer if there are conflicts in the information.)

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