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NLRC, 525 SCRA 208 (07)

Disclaimer: I may not have identified the issue/doctrine properly. When in However, as discussed above, in order to consider it a serious misconduct
doubt, go orig  Chadd C. that would justify dismissal under the law, it must have been done in
relation to the performance of her duties as would show her unfit to
continue working for her employer. The acts complained of, under the
Collegio de San Juan de Letran v. Assn. Of Employees, etc. 340 SCRA circumstances they were done, did not in any way pertain to her duties as
chemist/quality controller.
587 (00)
Admittedly, management has the prerogative to discipline its employees Associated Labor Union v. NLRC, 302 SCRA 708 (99) 714-716
for insubordination. But when the exercise of such management right tends to
interfere with the employees' right to self-organization, it amounts to union- There is no question that the employer has the inherent right to discipline,
busting and is therefore a prohibited act. The dismissal of Ms. Ambas was including that of dismissing its employees for just causes. This right is,
clearly designed to frustrate the Union in its desire to forge a new CBA with the however, subject to reasonable regulation by the State in the exercise of
College that is reflective of the true wishes and aspirations of the Union its police power. The finding of the NLRC that an employee violated the
members. Her dismissal was merely a subterfuge to get rid of her, which smacks company rules and regulations is subject to scrutiny by the Court to
of a pre-conceived plan to oust her from the premises of the College. It has the determine if the dismissal is justified and, if so, whether the penalty
effect of busting the Union, stripping it of its strong-willed leadership. When imposed is commensurate to the gravity of his offense.
management refused to treat the charge of insubordination as a grievance In this case, we agree with the Labor Arbiter that dismissal would not be
within the scope of the Grievance Machinery, the action of the College in finally proportionate to the gravity of the offense committed by petitioner
dismissing her from the service became arbitrary, capricious and whimsical, and considering the value of the articles he pilfered and the fact that he had
therefore violated Ms. Ambas' right to due process. no previous derogatory record during his two (2) years of employment in
the company. The Labor Arbiter is certainly mistaken in regarding the
articles taken to be mere scraps and hence without value to the
San Miguel Brewery etc. v. Ople, 170 SCRA 25 (89) company. They were of some value but not enough to warrant dismissal.
Every business enterprise endeavors to increase its profits. In the
process, it may adopt or devise means designed towards that goal. In Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. Inc. v. NLRC, 303 SCRA 9 (99)
Abott Laboratories vs. NLRC, 164 SCRA 713, We ruled:
"x x x Even as the law is solicitous of the welfare of the employsee, it Dismissal is the ultimate penalty that can be meted to an employee.
must also protect the right of an employer to exercise what are clearly Where a penalty less punitive would suffice, whatever missteps may have
management prerogatives. The free will of management to conduct its been committed by the worker ought not to be visited with a consequence
own business affairs to achieve its purpose cannot be denied." so severe such as dismissal from employment. For, the Constitution
So long as a company's management prerogatives are exercised in good guarantees the right of workers to “security of tenure.” The misery and
faith for the advancement of the employer's interest and not for the pain attendant to the loss of jobs then could be avoided if there be
purpose of defeating or circumventing the rights of the employees under acceptance of the view that under certain circumstances of the case the
special laws or under valid agreements, this Court will uphold them (LVN workers should not be deprived of their means of livelihood.
Pictures Workers vs. LVN, 35 SCRA 147; Phil. American Embroideries vs.
Embroidery and Garment Workers, 26 SCRA 634; Phil. Refining Co. vs. Philips Semiconductors etc., Fadriquela, 427 SCRA 408 (04)
Garcia, 18 SCRA 110). San Miguel Corporation's offer to compensate the (Doctrinal case, cites PLDT v. NLRC doctrin above, among other points)
members of its sales force who will be adversely affected by the
implementation of the CDS, by paying them a so-called" back adjustment Central Pangasinan Elec. Corp. v. Macaraeg, 395 SCRA 720 (03)
commission" to make up for the commissions they might lose as a result It is not material that they did not “misappropriate any amount of money,
of the CDS, proves the company's good faith and lack of intention to bust nor incur any shortage relative to the funds in their possession.” The basic
their union. premise for dismissal on the ground of loss of confidence is that the
employees concerned hold positions of trust. The betrayal of this trust is
Central Pangasinan Electric Corp. Inc. v. NLRC, 528 SCRA 146 (07) the essence of the offence for which an employee is penalized. In the case
at bar, the respondents held positions of utmost trust and confidence. As
[citing Central Pang. V. Macaraeg] It is not material that they did not teller and cashier, respectively, they are expected to possess a high
“misappropriate any amount of money, nor incur any shortage relative to degree of fidelity. They are entrusted with a considerable amount of
the funds in their possession.” The basic premise for dismissal on the cash. Respondent de Vera accepted payments from petitioner’s
ground of loss of confidence is that the employees concerned hold consumers while respondent Macaraeg received remittances for deposit at
positions of trust. The betrayal of this trust is the essence of the offence petitioner’s bank. They did not live up to their duties and obligations.
for which an employee is penalized.
Golden Thread Knitting Industries, Inc. v. NLRC, 304 SeRA 568 (99) concerned is responsible for the purported misconduct, and the nature of
Dismissal is the ultimate penalty that can be meted to an employee. It his participation therein renders him unworthy of the trust and confidence
must therefore be based on a clear and not on an ambiguous or demanded by his position.
ambivalent ground. From our assessment of the records, we find that
petitioners exercised their authority to dismiss without due regard to the Habana v. NLRC, 298 SCRA 537 (98)
pertinent exacting provisions of the Labor Code. The right to terminate Voluntary resignation is defined as the voluntary act of an employee who
should be utilized with extreme caution because its immediate effect is to "finds himself in a situation where he believes that personal reasons
put an end to an employee's present means of livelihood while its distant cannot be sacrificed in favor of the exigency of the service and he has no
effect, upon a subsequent finding of illegal dismissal, is just as pernicious other choice but to disassociate himself from his employment." 35 In this
to the employer who will most likely be required to reinstate the case, as indicated in the various memoranda he received from his
subject employee and grant him full back wages and other benefits. superiors, petitioner was clearly having trouble performing his job, one
which undeniably carries immense responsibilities. Notable too was
Cebu Filveneer Corp. v. NLRC, 286 SCRA 556 (98) petitioner's failure to see eye with his immediate bosses, first, Mr. Yokoo
In labor-management relations, there can be no higher penalty than and then Mr. Okawa. Because of these difficulties, it was quite reasonable
dismissal from employment. Dismissal severs employment ties and could for petitioner to think of, and eventually, relinquishing his position
well be the economic death sentence of an employee. Dismissal voluntarily (and get a fat sum as severance pay in the bargain) instead of
prejudices the socio-economic well being of the employee's family and waiting to be fired.
threatens the industrial peace. Due to its far reaching implications, our
Labor Code decrees that an employee cannot be dismissed, except for the BMG Records (Phil.) Inc. v. Aparecio, 532 SCRA 300 (07)
most serious causes. The overly concern of our laws for the welfare of Resignation is the voluntary act of an employee who is in a situation
employees is in accord with the social justice philosophy of our where one believes that personal reasons cannot be sacrificed in favor of
Constitution. the exigency of the service, and one has no other choice but to dissociate
oneself from employment. It is a formal pronouncement or relinquishment
Salvador v. Phil. Mining Service Corp., 395 SCRA 729 (03) of an office, with the intention of relinquishing the office accompanied by
To be sure, length of service is taken into consideration in imposing the the act of relinquishment. As the intent to relinquish must concur with the
penalty to be meted an erring employee. However, the case at bar overt act of relinquishment, the acts of the employee before and after the
involves dishonesty and pilferage by petitioner which resulted in alleged resignation must be considered in determining whether in fact, he
respondent’s loss of confidence in him. Unlike other just causes for or she intended to sever from his or her employment.
dismissal, trust in an employee, once lost is difficult, if not impossible, to
regain. Moreover, petitioner was not an ordinary rank-and-file employee. Azcor Manufacturing Inc. v. NLRC, 303 SCRA 26 (99)
He occupied a high position of responsibility. As foreman and shift boss, To constitute a resignation, it must be unconditional and with the intent to
he had over-all control of the care, supervision and operations of operate as such. There must be an intention to relinquish a portion of the
respondent’s entire plant. It cannot be over-emphasized that there is no term of office accompanied by an act of relinquishment.
substitute for honesty for sensitive positions which call for utmost trust.
Fairness dictates that respondent should not be allowed to continue with Metro Transit Organization Inc. v. NRLC, 284 SCRA 308 (98)
the employment of petitioner who has breached the confidence reposed Evidently the complainant was asked to make a choice whether to tender
on him. As a general rule, employers are allowed wider latitude of his resignation or be terminated for his absences which to our mind is
discretion in terminating the employment of managerial employees as anchored on justifiable grounds. Such compulsion to make an
they perform functions which require the employer’s full trust and unnecessary choice placed undue and unjustifiable pressure on the
confidence. employee who otherwise would not have thought of leaving his position as
Station Teller if he had not been induced to do so. This being the case, the
Caoile v. NLRC, 299 SCRA 76 (98) resignation filed by the complainant did not become effective.
Now it must be noted the recent decisions of this Court has distinguished
the treatment of managerial employees from that of rank-and-file Globe Telecom v. Crisologo, 329 SCRA 811 (07)
personnel, insofar as the application of the doctrine of loss of trust and Resignation is the voluntary act of an employee who finds herself in a
confidence is concerned. Thus with respect to rank-and-file personnel, situation where she believes that personal reasons cannot be sacrificed in
loss of trust and confidence as ground for valid dismissal requires proof of favor of the exigency of the service and that she has no other choice but
involvement in the alleged events in question, and that mere to disassociate herself from employment.49
uncorroborated assertion and accusations by the employer will not be Employees resign for various reasons. A big salary is certainly no
sufficient. But, as regards as a managerial employee, mere existence of a hindrance to a voluntary cessation of employment. Human resource
basis for believing that such employee has breached the trust of his studies reveal that various factors (in and out of the workplace) affect an
employer would suffice for his dismissal. Hence, in the case of managerial employee�s employment decision.50 In this instance, respondent would have
employees, proof beyond reasonable doubt is not required, it being suffered a miscarriage had she continued to work. She obviously resigned
sufficient that there is some basis for such loss of confidence, such as for the sake of her child's well-being, motherhood clearly taking
when the employer has reasonable ground to believe that the employee precedence over her job.
rendered the same effective.[31] Upon such acceptance, it may not be
Vicente v. CA 531 SCRA 244 (07) unilaterally withdrawn without the consent of petitioners.[32] When the
In voluntary resignation, the employee is compelled by personal employee later signified the intention of continuing his or her work, it was
reason(s) to disassociate himself from employment. It is done with the already up to the employer to accept the withdrawal of his or her
intention of relinquishing an office, accompanied by the act of resignation. The mere fact that the withdrawal was not accepted does not
abandonment. To determine whether the employee indeed intended to constitute illegal dismissal, the acceptance of the withdrawal of the
relinquish such employment, the act of the employee before and after the resignation being the employer's sole prerogative.
alleged resignation must be considered.
Manila Broadcasting Co. v. NLRC, 294 SCRA 486 (98)
Phil. Wireless Inc. v. NLRC, 310 SCRA 653 (99) What is involved in this case is an unwritten company policy considering
The Court has held that constructive dismissal is “an involuntary any employee who files a certificate of candidacy for any elective or local
resignation resorted to when continued employment is rendered office as resigned from the company. Although §11(b) of R.A. No. 6646
impossible, unreasonable or unlikely; when there is a demotion in rank does not require mass media commentators and announcers such as
and/or a diminution in pay; or when a clear discrimination, insensibility or private respondent to resign from their radio or TV stations but only to go
disdain by an employer becomes unbearable to the employee.” In this on leave for the duration of the campaign period, we think that the
particular case, respondent voluntarily resigned from his employment. He company may nevertheless validly require them to resign as a matter of
was not pressured into resigning. policy. In this case, the policy is justified on the following grounds:
Voluntary resignation is defined as the act of an employee who “finds Working for the government and the company at the same time is clearly
himself in a situation where he believes that personal reasons cannot disadvantageous and prejudicial to the rights and interest not only of the
be sacrificed in favor of the exigency of the service and he has no other company but the public as well. In the event an employee wins in an
choice but to disassociate himself from his employment. election, he cannot fully serve, as he is expected to do, the interest of his
employer. The employee has to serve two (2) employers, obviously
Pascua v. NLRC, 287 SCRA 554 (98) detrimental to the interest of both the government and the private
Basic is the doctrine that resignation must be voluntary and made with employer.
the intention of relinquishing the office, accompanied with an act of In the event the employee loses in the election, the impartiality and cold
Based on the evidence on record, we are more than neutrality of an employee as broadcast personality is suspect, thus readily
eroding and adversely affecting the confidence and trust of the listening
convinced that Petitioners Lilia Pascua, Mimi Macanlalay, Susan C. De
public to employer's station.
Castro and Violeta Soriano did not voluntarily quit their jobs. Rather, they
were forced to resign or were summarily dismissed without just cause.
Phil. Long Distance Telephone Co. Inc. v. Balbastro, 519 SCRA 233 (07)
Petitioners � except Victoria L. Santos � forthwith took steps to protest
As petitioner stated in its pleadings, it is a telecommunication service
their layoff and thus cannot, by any logic, be said to have abandoned
company which provides the country with various telecommunication
their work.
services and facilities. Its operations are a vital part to many transactions
all over the country and abroad, and private respondent was one of its
Azcor Manufacturing Inc. v. NLRC, 303 SCRA 26 (99)
telephone operators who used to connect all these calls. Thus, her patent
abuse of her sick leave privileges is detrimental to petitioner�s business.
While it is true that compassion and human consideration should guide
Valdez v. NLRC, 286 SCRA 87 (98)
the disposition of cases involving termination of employment since it
Resignation is defined as the voluntary act of an employee who finds
affects one's source or means of livelihood, it should not be overlooked
himself in a situation where he believes that personal reasons cannot be
that the benefits accorded to labor do not include compelling an employer
sacrificed in favor of the exigency of the service, and, that he has no
to retain the services of an employee who has been shown to be a gross
other choice but to disassociate himself from his employment. Resignation
liability to the employer. The law in protecting the rights of the employees
is a formal pronouncement of relinquishment of an office. It must be
authorizes neither oppression nor self-destruction of the employer.33 It
made with the intention of relinquishing the office accompanied by an act
should be made clear that when the law tilts the scale of justice in favor
of relinquishment. 10
of labor, it is but a recognition of the inherent economic inequality
The cardinal rule in termination cases is that the employer bears the
between labor and management. The intent is to balance the scale of
burden of proof to show that the dismissal is for just cause, failing in
justice; to put the two parties on relatively equal positions. There may be
which it would mean that the dismissal is not justified. 11 This rule
cases where the circumstances warrant favoring labor over the interests
applies adversely against herein respondent company since it has utterly
of management but never should the scale be so tilted if the result is an
failed to discharge that onus by the requisite quantum of evidence.
injustice to the employer. Justitia nemini neganda est (Justice is to be
denied to none).

BMG Records Phil. Inc. v. Aparecio, 532 SCRA 300 (07)

Gutierrez v. Singer Sewing Machine Co./ 411 SCRA 512 (03)
[supra] … the acceptance by petitioners of Aparecio's resignation
The penalty imposed on the erring employee ought to be proportionate to
the offense, taking into account its nature and surrounding dismissed employee can never be reinstated.
circumstances. In the application of labor laws, the courts and other
agencies of the government are guided by the social justice mandate in Perez v. Medical City General Hospital, 484 SCRA 138 (06)
our fundamental law. The power to dismiss an employee is a recognized prerogative that is
To be lawful, the cause for termination must be a serious and grave inherent in the employer�s right to freely manage and regulate his business. An
malfeasance to justify the deprivation of a means of livelihood. This is employer cannot be expected to retain an employee whose lack of morals,
merely in keeping with the spirit of our Constitution and laws which lean respect and loyalty to his employer or regard for his employer�s rules and
over backwards in favor of the working class, and mandate that every appreciation of the dignity and responsibility of his office has so plainly and
doubt must be resolved in their favor. completely been bared. An employer may not be compelled to continue to
employ a person whose continuance in service will patently be inimical to
his interest. The dismissal of an employee, in a way, is a measure of self-
Manila Trading and Supply Co./ Inc. v. Zulueta, 69 Phil. 485 (40) 486-487 protection. Nevertheless, whatever acknowledged right the employer has
an employer cannot legally be compelled to continue with employment of to discipline his employee, it is still subject to reasonable regulation by
a person who admittedly was guilty of misfeasance or malfeasance the State in the exercise of its police power. 11 Thus, it is within the power
towards his employer, and whose continuance in the service of the latter of this Court not only to scrutinize the basis for dismissal but also to
is patently inimical to his interests. The law, in protecting the rights of the determine if the penalty is commensurate to the offense, notwithstanding
laborer, authorizes neither oppression nor self-destruction of the the company rules.
employer. There may, of course, be cases where the suspension or
dismissal of an employee is whimsical or unjustified or otherwise illegal in Steel Pipe Corp. v. Bardaje, 522 SCRA (07)
which case he will be protected. Each case will be scrutinized carefully and [Citing Almira v. B.F. Goodrich 58 SCRA 120] [W]here a penalty less
the proper authorities will go to the core of the controversy and not close punitive would suffice, whatever missteps may be committed by labor
their eyes to the real situation. This is not however the case here. ought not to be visited with a consequence so severe. It is not only
because of the law's concern for the workingman. There is, in addition, his
Agabon v. NLRC, 442 SCRA 573 (04) family to consider. Unemployment brings untold hardships and sorrows on
An employee who is clearly guilty of conduct violative of Article 282 those dependent on the wage-earner. The misery and pain attendant on
should not be protected by the Social Justice Clause of the Constitution. the loss of jobs then could be avoided if there be acceptance of the view
Social justice, as the term suggests, should be used only to correct an that under all circumstances of this case, petitioners should not be
injustice. As the eminent Justice Jose P. Laurel observed, social justice deprived of their means of livelihood. Nor is this to condone what had
must be founded on the recognition of the necessity of interdependence been done by them For all this while, since private respondent considered
among diverse units of a society and of the protection that should be them separated from the service, they had not been paid. From the
equally and evenly extended to all groups as a combined force in our strictly juridical standpoint, it cannot be too strongly stressed, to follow
social and economic life, consistent with the fundamental and paramount Davis in his masterly work, Discretionary Justice, that where a decision
objective of the state of promoting the health, comfort, and quiet of all may be made to rest [on] informed judgment rather than rigid rules, all
persons, and of bringing about “the greatest good to the greatest the equities of the case must be accorded their due weight. Finally, labor
number.” law determinations, to quote from Bultmann, should be not only
secundum rationem but also secundum caritatem.
PLDT v. Tolentino, 438 SCRA 555 (04)
Well-entrenched is the rule that an illegally dismissed employee is entitled Fujitsu Computer Products Corp. v. Court of Appeals, 454 SCRA 737 (05)
to reinstatement as a matter of right. Over the years, however, the case The Court is wont to reiterate that while an employer has its own interest
law developed that where reinstatement is not feasible, expedient or to protect, and pursuant thereto, it may terminate a managerial employee
practical, as where reinstatement would only exacerbate the tension and for a just cause, such prerogative to dismiss or lay-off an employee must
strained relations between the parties, or where relationship between the be exercised without abuse of discretion. Its implementation should be
employer and employee has been unduly strained by reason of their tempered with compassion and understanding. The employer should bear
irreconcilable differences, particularly where the illegally dismissed in mind that, in the execution of the said prerogative, what is at stake is
employee held a managerial or key position in the company, it would be not only the employee’s position, but his very livelihood.[65] The
more prudent to order payment of separation pay instead of Constitution does not condone wrongdoing by the employee;
reinstatement. Some unscrupulous employers, however, have taken nevertheless, it urges a moderation of the sanction that may be applied to
advantage of the overgrowth of this doctrine of “strained relations” by him.[66] Where a penalty less punitive would suffice, whatever missteps
using it as a cover to get rid of its employees and thus defeat their right may have been committed by the worker ought not be visited with a
to job security. consequence so severe as dismissal from employment.[67] Indeed, the
To protect labor’s security of tenure, we emphasize that the doctrine of consistent rule is that if doubts exist between the evidence presented by
“strained relations” should be strictly applied so as not to deprive an the employer and the employee, the scales of justice must be tilted in
illegally dismissed employee of his right to reinstatement. Every labor favor of the latter. The employer must affirmatively show rationally
dispute almost always results in “strained relations” and the phrase adequate evidence that the dismissal was for justifiable cause.
cannot be given an overarching interpretation, otherwise, an unjustly
termination. Where no distinction is given, none is construed. Hence, the
Ariola v. Philex Mining Corp., 446 SCRA 152 (05) foregoing standards of due process apply to the termination of
When the defect is procedural, the dismissal remains valid because the employment of Suico, et al. even if the cause therefor was their supposed
basis of the dismissal is not in any way affected by such defect. The involvement in strike-related violence prohibited under Art. 264 (a)
dismissal of an employee who commits a crime against an employer and (e).
cannot be invalidated because of lack of notice of dismissal to the
employee. The lack of notice does not in any way erase or mitigate the Moreover, the procedure for termination prescribed under Art.
crime. 277(b) and Rule XXII of the Implementing Rules of Book V is
supplemented by existing company policy. Art. 277(b) provides that the
Phil. National Bank v. Cabansag, 460 SCRA 514 (05) procedure for termination prescribed therein is without prejudice to the
As a regular employee, respondent was entitled to all rights, benefits and adoption by the employer of company policy on the matter, provided this
privileges provided under our labor laws. One of her fundamental rights conforms with the guidelines set by the DOLE such as Rule XXII of the
is that she may not be dismissed without due process of law. The twin Implementing Rules of Book V. This is consistent with the established
requirements of notice and hearing constitute the essential elements of principle that employers are allowed, under the broad concept of
procedural due process, and neither of these elements can be eliminated management prerogative, to adopt company policies that regulate all
without running afoul of the constitutional guarantee.[22] aspects of personnel administration including the dismissal and recall of
In dismissing employees, the employer must furnish them two written workers.
notices: 1) one to apprise them of the particular acts or omissions for
which their dismissal is sought; and 2) the other to inform them of the Company policies or practices are binding on the parties. Some can ripen
decision to dismiss them. As to the requirement of a hearing, its essence into an obligation on the part of the employer, such as those which confer
lies simply in the opportunity to be heard. benefits on employees or regulate the procedures and requirements for
their termination.
Truly, the contracting parties may establish such stipulations, clauses,
terms and conditions as they want, and their agreement would have the
force of law between them. However, petitioner overlooks the
qualification that those terms and conditions agreed upon must not be
contrary to law, morals, customs, public policy or public order.[30] As
explained earlier, the employment Contract between petitioner and
respondent is governed by Philippine labor laws. Hence, the stipulations,
clauses, and terms and conditions of the Contract must not contravene
our labor law provisions.
Moreover, a contract of employment is imbued with public interest. The
Court has time and time again reminded parties that they “are not at liberty
to insulate themselves and their relationships from the impact of labor laws
and regulations by simply contracting with each other.”[31] Also, while a
contract is the law between the parties, the provisions of positive law that
regulate such contracts are deemed included and shall limit and govern
the relations between the parties.[32]
Basic in our jurisprudence is the principle that when there is no showing
of any clear, valid, and legal cause for the termination of employment, the
law considers the matter a case of illegal dismissal.

Genuino Ice Co. Inc. v. Magpantay, 493 SCRA 195 (06))

Simply stated, the employer must furnish the employee a written notice
containing a statement of the cause for termination and to afford said
employee ample opportunity to be heard and defend himself with the
assistance of his representative, if he so desires, and the employee must
be notified in writing of the decision dismissing him, stating clearly the
reasons therefor.

Suico v. NLRC, 513 SCRA 325 (07)

Art. 277 (b) in relation to Art. 264 (a) and (e) recognizes the right to due
process of all workers, without distinction as to the cause of their