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Article 02: (as amended by E.O. NO.

“Laws shall take effect after 15 days following the 1. “Laws” – all laws statutes, including local and private
completion of their publication either in the Official laws
Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the - except special laws providing a different effectivity
Philippines, unless it is otherwise provided.” mechanism for particular statutes
2. Presidential Decrees
Original addition: “This Code shall take effect one year after – all presidential decrees must be published
publication.” 3. Executive orders
Civil Code took effect on August 30, 1950 – in the exercise of legislative powers validly delegated
or directly conferred by the Constitution
Expressly amended by EO No. 200 issued on June 18 1987: 4. Administrative rules and regulations
 Laws to be effective must be published either in the – if their purpose is to enforce or implement an existing
Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general law pursuant to a valid delegation
circulation in the country. 5. Charter of a city
 Publication in Official Gazette only has entailed – even if it applies only to a portion of the national
some problems, considering the erratic release and territory
limited leadership of the Official Gazette 6. Circulars issued by the Monetary Board
(recognized in Tanada v Tuvera) - if they are meant not merely to interpret but to fill in
 Newspaper of general circulation could better the details of the Central Bank Act
perform the function of communicating laws to the
people as such periodicals are more easily available, NOT COVERED:
have a wide circulation, and come out regularly. 1. Interpretative regulations and those merely internal in
 Took effect immediately after its publication in the nature
Official Gazette – regulating only the personnel of the admin agency and not
the public

EFFECTIVITY OF LAWS 2. Letters of Instructions

1. When a statute does not explicitly provide for its – issued by admin superiors concerning rules and
effectivity, it shall take effect only after the expiration guideline to be followed by their subordinates in the
of the 15 day period following the completion of its performance of their duties
publication either in the Official Gazette or in a 3. Municipal Ordinances
newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines. 4. Supreme Court decisions
2. If the law provides for a different period shorter or - because they are not laws
longer than the 15 day period, then such shorter or
longer period, as the case may be, will prevail. Tunada v Tuvera | GR No. L-63915 | April 24, ‘85

“Unless it is otherwise provided” Facts: Petitioners seek for a writ of mandamus to compel
- refers to the 15 day period and NOT to the respondent public officials to cause the publication of
requirement of publication several presidential decrees, letters of instructions, general
orders, proclamations, executive orders, letters of
Publication is an indispensable requisite; absence of which implementation and administrative orders, invoking Art 2 of
will not render the law effective the Civil Code and asserting that publication is required to
- omission would offend due process; it would deny render the aforementioned valid and enforceable.
the public of the laws that are supposed to govern it
- it is likely that persons not aware of it would be Respondents contend that publication is not a sine qua non
prejudiced as a result and that they would be so, not requirement for the effectivity of laws where the laws
because of a failure to comply with it, but simply themselves provide for their own effectivity dates.
because they did not know of its existence
- intended to enable the people to become familiar ISSUE: whether or not laws providing for their own
with the state effectivity dates must still be published to be valid and
Publication must be in full or it is not publication at all enforceable
- after publication, the people are deemed to have
conclusively been notified of the law even if RULING: YES. Publication is necessary when no effectivity
actually the people or some of the same have not date is provided for in the statute. However, Art 02 does not
read them preclude the requirement of publication in the Official
Gazette even if the law itself provides for the date of its
“15 days after its publication”: 15th day effectivity. It would be the height of injustice to punish or
“after 15 days following the publication”: 16th day otherwise burden a citizen for the transgression of a law
which he had no notice whatsoever, not even a constructive
them directly. A law without any bearing on the public ultra
The publication of all presidential issuances “of a public vires or class legislation.
nature” or “of general applicability” is mandated by law. It
is a requirement of due process; rule of law that before a Publication requirements applies to (1) all statutes, including
person may be bound by law, he must first be officially and those of local application and private laws; (2) presidential
specifically informed of its contents. On the other hand, decrees and executive orders promulgated by the President
presidential issuances which apply only to particular persons in the exercise of legislative powers whenever the same are
or class of persons such as administrative and executive validly delegated by the legislature or directly conferred by
orders need not be published on the assumption that they the Constitution; (3) Administrative rules and regulations for
have been circularized to all concerned. the purpose of enforcing or implementing existing law
pursuant also to a valid delegation; (4) Charter of a city
The Court therefore declares that presidential issuances notwithstanding that it applies to only a portion of the
of general application which have not been published shall national territory and directly affects only the inhabitants
have no force and effect. ofthat place; (5) Monetary Board circulars to “fill in the
details” of the Central Bank Act which that body is supposed
Tanada v. Tuvera | GR L-63915 | 29 December 1986 to enforce.

Facts: Further, publication must be in full or it is no publication at

Petitioners are asking for a clarification of the Court’s all since its purpose is to inform the public of the contents of
previous decision where the Court ruled that all unpublished the laws.
presidential issuances which are of general application shall Reasoning: The Supreme Court declared that all laws as
have no binding force and effect unless so published. As above defined shall immediately upon their approval, or as
such petitioners are seeking clarification of what is meant by soon thereafter as possible, be published in full in the
general applicability and where publication is to be made. Official Gazette, to become effective only after 15 days from
their publication, or on another date specified by the
legislature, in accordance with Article 2 of the Civil Code.
The Solicitor General however claims that the clause in
Article 2 which provides that “unless it is otherwise CONCURRING: Fernan, J
provided” means that publication is not always necessary Publication also required to prevent abuses on the part of the
especially when the statute provides that it shall take effect lawmakers
CONCURRING: Feliciano, J
Issue: Whether publication may be dispensed with in light Publication in the Official Gazette is only a statutory norm
of the clause “unless otherwise provided”. and not a constitutional command. Hence, Art 2 may be
amended by a subsequent statute providing, for instance for
Ruling: NO publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of
The clause “unless it is otherwise provided,” in Article 2 of general circulation.
the Civil Code, refers to the date of effectivity and not to the
requirement of publication itself, which cannot in any event Article 03:
be omitted. This clause does not mean that the legislature “Ignorance of the law excuses no one from compliance
may make the law effective immediately upon approval, or therewith.”
on any other date, without its previous publication. The
legislature may in its discretion provide that the usual Ignorantia legis non excusat
fifteen- day period shall be shortened or extended. - Founded not only on expediency and policy but also
on necessity.
Publication is indispensable because: - To allow a party to set up as a valid defense the fact
1. such omission would offense due process insofar as it he has no actual knowledge of a law which he has
would deny the public knowledge of laws that are violated is to forment disorder in society.
supposed to govern it
o persons will be prejudiced not because of failure to That every person knows that law is a CONCLUSIVE
comply but simply because they did not know of the presumption (irrebuttable; as opposed to a prima facie
existence of the law presumption)
2. Publication also necessary to creation conclusive
presumption that every person knows the law Necessary consequence of the mandatory provision that all
3. Right of people to information on matters of public laws must be published.

“Laws” in Art 2 refer to ALL laws and not only to those of

general application for strictly speaking, all laws relate to the
people in general albeit there are some that do not apply to
“Laws shall have no retroactive effect unless the contrary - A law that would make a previous act criminal
is provded.” though it was not so at the time it was committed
- Congress prohibited from enacting ex-post facto
Retroactive – effective from a particular date in the past laws
Lex prospicit, non respicit - the law looks forward and not Requisites:
backward. 1. must refer to criminal matters;
2. be retroactive in its application;
Statutes are to be construed as having only prospective 3. prejudicial to the accused.
operation, unless the purpose and intention of the legislature
to give them a retrospective effect is:
1. expressly declared or; Article 07:
2. necessarily implied from the language used. “Laws are repealed only by subsequent ones, and their
violation or non-observance shall not be excused by
In case of doubt, the same must be resolved against the disuse, or custom, or practice to the contrary.
retrospective effect.
When the courts declare a law to be inconsistent with the
Legislature has the power to pass retroactive laws which: Constitution, the former shall be void and the latter shall
1. do not impair the obligation of contracts; prevail.
- only laws existing at the time of the execution of
the contract are applicable thereto, unless the latter are Administrative or executive acts, orders, and regulations
specifically intended to have retroactive effect. shall be valid only when they are not contrary to the laws
2. affect injuriously acquired or vested rights. or the Constitution.”

EXECEPTIONS: Repeal – the legislative act of abrogating through a

1. When the law expressly provides for retroactivity subsequent law the effects of a previous statute or portions
- example: Family Code; took effect August 03, 1988; has thereof.
retroactive application insofar as it does not prejudice vested
or acquired rights May be made in 2 ways:
1. Express – one which is literally declared by a new law,
2. When law is curative or remedial either in:
- statutes that are curative in nature are necessarily a. specific terms, as where particular laws and
retrospective provisions are identified to be repealed, or;
- curative statutes – statutes enacted to cure defects in a prior b. general terms, as where a provision in a new law
law; forms of retrospective legislation which reach back on declares all laws and parts of laws inconsistent therewith to
past events to correct errors of irregularities and to render be repealed
valid and effective attempted acts which would otherwise be
ineffective for the purpose the parties intended. 2. Implied – takes place when a new law contains
provisions contrary to or inconsistent with those of a former
3. When the law is procedural without expressly repealing them
- when a statute deals with procedure only, prima facie, it
applies to all actions – those which have accrued or pending Repeals and amendments by implications are NOT favored.
and future actions. Thus, a law prescribing the form of
pleadings will apply to all pleadings filed after its enactment, Repealing clauses contained in statutes are NOT express
although the action is begun before the time repeals; fails to identify or designate that act/s intended to be
repealed. They are, in effect, implied repeals for they
4. When the law is penal in character and favorable to the predicate the intended repeal upon the condition that
accused. substantial conflict must be found in existing and prior acts.
- expressly provided for by Art. 22 of RPC As such, the presumption against implied repeals applies and
- applies only when the accused is NOT a habitual delinquent the intention to repeal or alter must be manifest.
Habitual Delinquent – if within a period of 10 years from
the date of his release or last conviction of the crime of When a law expressly repeals a prior law, law first repealed
serious or less serious physical injuries, robbery, theft, shall not be revived unless expressly so provided.
estafa, or falsification, he I found guilty of any said crimes a When a law which impliedly repeals a prior law is itself
third time or oftener. repealed, the prior law shall thereby be revived, unless the
repealing law provides otherwise.
5. When the law creates new substantive rights Unconstitutional Statutes
- provided its retroactive application do not prejudice Constitution – fundamental law of the land; no ordinary
another acquired right of the same origin statute can override a constitutional provision.
However, in deciding the constitutionality of a statute, every
presumption favors its validity and whenever possible,
statutes should be given a meaning that will not bring them
in conflict with the Constitution.

Partial Unconstitutionality:
Where a portion of a statute is rendered unconstitutional and
the remainder valid, the parts will be separated and
constitutional portion upheld.
Enough must remain to make a complete, intelligible, and
valid stature which carries out the legislative intent
- Exception: when the parts of the statute are so
mutually dependent and connected as to warrant a
belief that the legislature intended them as a whole,
all the provisions which are thus dependent,
conditional, or connected, must fall with them.

Rules and Regulations

-partake of the nature of a sanction provided in the law’
statutes are couched in general terms by the legislature and
the details and the manner of carrying out the law are often
times left to administrative agencies entrusted with its

A rule is binding on the courts so long as the procedure fixed

for its promulgation is followed, and its scope is within the
statutory authority granted by the legislature.

Regulations adopted under legislative authority must be in

harmony with the provisions of the law, and for the sole
purpose of carrying into effect its general provisions.

Administrative or executive acts must be consistent with

laws and the Constitution for the President, in whom all
executive power resides, is tasked to take care that the laws
shall be faithfully executed.