Commonwealth Act No. 456






Be it enacted by the National Assembly of the Philippines:


SECTION 1.  Sections nineteen, twenty, and one hundred and eighteen of Commonwealth Act Numbered One hundred and forty-one are amended to read as follows:


“SEC. 19.  Not more than one homestead entry shall-be allowed to any one person, and no person to whom a homestead patent has been issued by virtue of the provisions of this Act regardless of the area, of his original homestead, may again acquire a homestead:  Provided, however, That any previous homesteader who has been issued a patent for less than twenty-four hectares and otherwise qualified to make a homestead entry, may be allowed another homestead which, together with his previous homestead, shall not exceed an area of twenty-four hectares.


“SEC. 20.  If at any time after the approval of the explication and before the patent is issued, the applicant shall prove to the satisfaction of the Director of Lands that he has complied with all the requirements of the law, but cannot continue with his homestead, through no fault of his own, and there is a bona fide purchaser for the rights and improvements of the applicant on the land, and that the conveyance is not made for purposes of speculations, then the applicant, with the previous approval of the Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce, may transfer his rights to the land and improvements to any person legally qualified to apply for a homestead, and immediately after such transfer, the purchaser shall file a homestead application to the land so acquired and shall succeed the original homesteader in his rights and obligations beginning with the date of the approval of said application of the purchaser.  Any person who has so transferred his rights may not again apply for a new homestead.  Every transfer made without the previous approval of the Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce shall be null and void and shall result in the cancellation of the entry and the refusal of the patent.


“SEC. 118.  Except in favor of the Government or any of its branches, units, or institutions, lands acquired under free patent or homestead provisions shall not be subject to encumbrance or alienation from the date of the approval of the application and for a term of five years from and after the date of issuance of the patent or grant, nor shall they become liable to the satisfaction of any debt contracted prior to the expiration of said period, but the improvements or crops on the land may be mortgaged or pledged to qualified persons, associations, or corporations.


“No alienation, transfer, or conveyance of any homestead after five years and before twenty-five years after issuance of title shall be valid without the approval of the Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce, which approval shall not be denied except on constitutional and legal grounds.”


SEC. 2.  This Act shall take effect upon its approval.


Approved, June 8, 1939


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