by Fatima Villarin Cero
The 1987 Constitution reserves ownership of Philippine lands to Filipinos, whether individuals or a juridical entities, such as corporations. In fact, Section 7, Article XII of the 1987 Constitution is clear in that generally, private lands shall be transferred only to individuals, corporations, or associations qualified to acquire or hold lands of public domain.
The determination of who can own land in the Philippines appears to be more straightforward for individuals as it simply requires that they be classified as citizens of the Philippines falling under the definition of the Constitution on citizenship.
The challenge might be more apparent when it comes to determining whether a juridical person, like a corporation, is considered a Philippine corporation qualified to own land in the Philippines. Section 22 of Commonwealth Act No. 141 is instructive in that only corporations of which at least 60 percent of the capital stock belongs wholly to citizens of the Philippines are qualified to own a land within the limits provided by the law.
© 2020 R.G. Manabat & Co., a Philippine partnership and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative, a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.
KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”) is a Swiss entity. Member firms of the KPMG network of independent firms are affiliated with KPMG International. KPMG International provides no client services. No member firm has any authority to obligate or bind KPMG International or any other member firm vis-à-vis third parties, nor does KPMG International have any such authority to obligate or bind any member firm.