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1) Television and Production Exponents, Inc. (TAPE) v.

Servaña Held: The existence of an employer-employee relationship is ultimately a question of fact


Petitioners: Television and Production Exponents, Inc. and/or Antonio Tuviera which is not usually entertained in appeals by certiorari to the SC except when the findings
Respondent: Roberto C. Servaña of the LA, NLRC, and CA are conflicting.
Employer-Employee relationship – Elements
CA correctly applied the “four-fold test”, using the elements of the ER-EE relationship:
Doctrine: Elements of the employer-employee relationship: 1. TAPE did selection and hiring of Servaña (after he was severed from RPN). Sending the
1. The selection and engagement of the employee memo that his services will be terminated as soon as the security agency will be hired
2. The payment of wages is an acknowledgement of Servaña as their employee
3. The power of dismissal 2. Payment was given to Servaña on a monthly basis amounting to P 5,444.44. Clearly,
4. The power of control – “control test” is the most important factor; when the Servaña received a fixed amount as monthly compensation for the services rendered
person for whom the services are rendered reserves the right to control not only to TAPE. Wages, as defined in the LC, are remuneration or earnings, however
the end achieved but also the manner and means used to achieve that end designated, capable of being expressed in terms of money, whether fixed or
ascertained on a time , task, piece, or commission basis, payable by an employer to an
Facts: employee under a contract of employment for work to be done/service to be rendered
- TAPE is a domestic corporation engaged in the production of TV programs (e.g., Eat 3. The bundy (time) cards are proof of TAPE’s control over Servaña, particularly with
Bulaga!). Its president is Antonio Tuviera. regard to the time he is required to report for work during the noontime program of
- Roberto Servaña served as a security guard for TAPE from March 1987 until he was “Eat Bulaga! Without this control, Servaña would be free to report for work ay anytime
terminated on 3 March 2000 (13 years) by which date, he was received P6000/month and still receive compensation for being a “talent”. The time cards are not just for mere
- Servaña received a memorandum informing him of his impending dismissal due to record purposes. It is a form of control by TAPE.
TAPE’s decision to hire a professional security agency.
- He thus filed a complaint for illegal dismissal and nonpayment of benefits against TAPE, Even assuming that Servaña is a program employee, classifying him as an independent
alleging that he was absorbed by TAPE from Agro-Commercial Security Agency. He was contractor is misplaced. An independent contractor is not an employee of the employer,
detailed at Broadway Centrum, QC. while a talent or program employee is an employee.
- TAPE countered that the labor arbiter had no jurisdiction over the case because there
was no employer-employee relationship. TAPE alleged the ff: Art. 280: An employment shall be deemed to be regular where the employee has been
o Servaña was initially employed as a guard for Radio PH Network engaged to perform activities which are usually necessary or desirable in the usual business
o He was tasked to assist TAPE during live productions (assist the crowd) or trade of the employer, except where the employment has been fixed for a specific project
o When RPN severed its relationship with the security agency, TAPE engaged or undertaking the completion or termination of which has been determined at the time of
Servaña as part of the support group thus, as a talent, but to provide security engagement of the employee or where the work or service to be performed is seasonal in
service nature and employment is for the duration of the season.
o He was an independent contractor falling under the talent group category
o TAPE issued a memorandum to all talents whose functions would be rendered An employment shall be deemed to be casual if it is not covered by the preceding paragraph.
redundant by the hiring of a security agency
- Servaña argues that he was a regular employee engaged to perform an activity that is
necessary and desirable to TAPE’s business
- LA  Servaña, relying on the nature of Servaña’s work which is securing and
maintaining order in the studio, as necessary and desirable in the usual business activity
of TAPE. LA also ruled that the termination was valid on the ground of redundancy
- On appeal, NLRC  TAPE, ruling that Servaña was a mere program employee. It held
that the primary standard to determine regularity of employment is the reasonable
connection between the particular activity performed by the employee in relation to
the usual business or trade of the employer. In TV program productions, security
services may not be deemed necessary and desirable in the usual business of the
employer—TAPE’s business will not grind to a halt.
- On appeal, CA  Servaña, finding him to be a regular employee

Issue: W/N an employer-employee relationship exists between TAPE and Servaña? YES.