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ART.

225 Petitioner moved for reconsideration arguing that the NLRC erred
in granting a temporary injunction order when it has no jurisdiction to
[G.R. No. 120567. March 20, 1998]
issue an injunction or restraining order since this may be issued only
PHILIPPINE AIRLINES, INC., petitioner, vs., NATIONAL LABOR under Article 218 of the Labor Code if the case involves or arises from
RELATIONS COMMISSION, FERDINAND PINEDA and labor disputes.
GODOFREDO CABLING, respondents. The NLRC denied petitioner's motion for reconsideration. The
now petitioner, for one, cannot validly claim that NLRC cannot exercise
Facts: Private respondents are flight stewards of the petitioner. Both its injunctive power under Article 218 (e) of the Labor Code on the
were dismissed from the service for their alleged involvement in the pretext that what NLRC have here is not a labor dispute as long as it
currency smuggling in Hong Kong. Aggrieved by said dismissal, private concedes that as defined by law, Labor Dispute includes any
respondents filed with the NLRC a petition for injunction. The NLRC controversy or matter concerning terms or conditions of employment.
issued a temporary mandatory injunction enjoining petitioner to cease Issue: WON the NLRC even without a complaint for illegal dismissal filed
and desist from enforcing its Memorandum of dismissal. before the labor arbiter, entertain an action for injunction and issue such
In support of the issuance of the writ of temporary injunction, the writ enjoining petitioner Philippine Airlines, Inc. from enforcing its Orders
NLRC adopted the view that: (1) private respondents cannot be validly of dismissal against private respondents, and ordering petitioner to
dismissed on the strength of petitioner's Code of Discipline which was reinstate the private respondents to their previous positions.
declared illegal by this Court for the reason that it was formulated by the Ruling: No. It is an essential requirement that there must first be a labor
petitioner without the participation of its employees (2) the whimsical, dispute between the contending parties before the labor arbiter. In the
baseless and premature dismissals of private respondents which present case, there is no labor dispute between the petitioner and
"caused them grave and irreparable injury" is enjoinable as private private respondents as there has yet been no complaint for illegal
respondents are left "with no speedy and adequate remedy at law' dismissal filed with the labor arbiter by the private respondents against
except the issuance of a temporary mandatory injunction; (3) the NLRC the petitioner. The petition for injunction directly filed before the NLRC is
is empowered not only to restrain any actual or threatened commission in reality an action for illegal dismissal. Thus, the NLRC exceeded its
of any or all prohibited or unlawful acts but also to require the jurisdiction when it issued the assailed Order granting private
performance of a particular act in any labor dispute, which, if not respondents' petition for injunction and ordering the petitioner to
restrained or performed forthwith, may cause grave or irreparable reinstate private respondents. Under the Labor Code, the ordinary and
damage to any party; and (4) the temporary mandatory power of the proper recourse of an illegally dismissed employee is to file a complaint
NLRC was recognized by this Court. for illegal dismissal with the labor arbiter. In the case at bar, private
respondents disregarded this rule and directly went to the NLRC through
a petition for injunction praying that petitioner be enjoined from enforcing LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner,
its dismissal orders. Furthermore, an examination of private vs.
respondents' petition for injunction reveals that it has no basis since SEVERINO LISTANA, SR., respondent.
there is no showing of any urgency or irreparable injury which the private
respondents might suffer. G.R. No. 152611 August 5, 2003
An injunction, as an extraordinary remedy, is not favored in labor
law considering that it generally has not proved to be an effective means
Facts of the case:
of settling labor disputes. It has been the policy of the State to encourage
the parties to use the non-judicial process of negotiation and
Private respondent Listana voluntarily offered to sell his land of
compromise, mediation and arbitration. Thus, injunctions may be issued
246.0561 ha. in Sorsogon to the government, through the Department
only in cases of extreme necessity based on legal grounds clearly
of Agrarian Reform (DAR) under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform
established, after due consultations or hearing and when all efforts at
Program (CARP). DAR valued the property at P5,871,689.03 but
conciliation are exhausted which factors, however, are clearly absent in
Listana refused to sell at that price, so the Department of Agrarian
the present case.
Reform Adjudication Board (DARAB), in an administrative proceeding
Injunction is a preservative remedy for the protection of one's determined the just compensation of the land at P10,956,963.25 and
substantive rights or interest. It is not a cause of action in itself but merely ordered the Land Bank of the Philippines to pay the same to Listana. A
a provisional remedy, an adjunct to a main suit. It is resorted to only writ of execution was issued by PARAD to that effect but it was
when there is a pressing necessity to avoid injurious consequences apparently not complied with by LBP so a Motion for Contempt was
which cannot be remedied under any standard of compensation. The filed by Listana with the PARAD against petitioner LBP. PARAD
application of the injunctive writ rests upon the existence of an granted the Motion for Contempt and cited for indirect contempt and
emergency or of a special reason before the main case be regularly ordered the arrest of ALEX A. LORAYES, the Manager of LBP. LBP
heard. The essential conditions for granting such temporary injunctive obtained a preliminary injunction from the Regional Trial Court of
relief are that the complaint alleges facts which appear to be sufficient Sorsogon enjoining DARAB from enforcing the arrest order against
to constitute a proper basis for injunction and that on the entire showing Lorayes. Listana filed a special civil action for certiorari with the Court
from the contending parties, the injunction is reasonably necessary to of Appeals. CA nullified the order of the RTC. Consequently, petitioner
protect the legal rights of the plaintiff pending the litigation. Injunction is LBP filed a petition for review with the Supreme Court.
also a special equitable relief granted only in cases where there is no
plain, adequate and complete remedy at law
Issue:
Whether the order for the arrest of petitioner's manager, Mr. Alex of the union and from implementing memorandum terminating the servi
Lorayes by the PARAD, was valid. ces of the sales drivers, and to immediately reinstate them if the dismis
sals have been effected.
Ruling:
Allegedly, the respondents did not comply with the NLRC’s resolution.
They instead moved to dissolve the TRO and opposed the union’s petit
The arrest order issued by PARAD against Lorayes was not valid ion for preliminary injunction. Then, the NLRC upgraded the TRO to a
because the contempt proceedings initiated through an unverified writ of preliminary injunction.The respondents moved for reconsideratio
"Motion for Contempt" filed by the respondent with the PARAD were n. The union opposed the motion and urgently moved to cite the respo
themselves invalid. Said proceedings were invalid for the following nsible CTMI officers in contempt of court.
reasons:
Meanwhile, the NLRC heard the contempt charge and issued a resoluti
First, the Rules of Court clearly require the filing of a verified petition on dismissing the charge. It ordered the labor arbiter to proceed hearin
with the Regional Trial Court, which was not complied with in this case. g the main case on the merits.
The charge was not initiated by the PARAD motu proprio; rather, it was
by a motion filed by respondent. ISSUE:

Second, neither the PARAD nor the DARAB have jurisdiction to


decide the contempt charge filed by the respondent. The issuance of a Whether or not the NLRC has contempt powers.
warrant of arrest was beyond the power of the PARAD and the
DARAB. Consequently, all the proceedings that stemmed from
respondent?s "Motion for Contempt," specifically the Orders of the
PARAD dated August 20, 2000 and January 3, 2001 for the arrest of HELD:
Alex A. Lorayes, are null and void.
FEDERICO S. ROBOSA vs. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COM Yes. Under Article 218 the Labor Code, the NLRC (and the labor arbite
MISSION G.R. No. 176085, February 8, 2012 rs) may hold any offending party in contempt, directly or indirectly, and
impose appropriate penalties in accordance with law. The penalty for di
FACTS: rect contempt consists of either imprisonment or fine, the degree or am
ount depends on whether the contempt is against the Commission or t
The NLRC issued a TRO and directed CTMI, De Luzuriaga and other he labor arbiter. The Labor Code, however, requires the labor arbiter or
company executives to cease and desist from dismissing any member the Commission to deal with indirect contempt in the manner prescribe
d under Rule 71 of the Rules of Court. Rule 71 of the Rules of Court do The Facts
es not require the labor arbiter or the NLRC to initiate indirect contempt
proceedings before the trial court. This mode is to be observed only w The instant case stemmed from a complaint 5 for illegal
hen there is no law granting them contempt powers. As is clear under dismissal, underpayment of salaries/wages and 13th month pay,
Article 218(d) of the Labor Code, the labor arbiter or the Commission is non-payment of overtime pay, holiday pay, and separation pay,
empowered or has jurisdiction to hold the offending party or parties in damages, and attorney's fees filed by Evelyn A. Caballa (Caballa),
direct or indirect contempt. Robosa, et al., therefore, have not improper Anthony M. Bautista (Bautista; collectively, respondents), and one
ly brought the indirect contempt charges against the respondents befor Jocelyn 6 S. Colisao (Colisao) against petitioners before the National
e the NLRC. Labor Relations Commission (NLRC). Respondents and Colisao
alleged that petitioners hired them as staff members in the latter's
business; Caballa and Bautista were assigned to man petitioners'
SECOND DIVISION
stalls in SM Bacoor and SM Rosario in Cavite, respectively, while
Colisao was assigned in several SM branches, the most recent of
[G.R. No. 230682. November 29, 2017] which was in SM North EDSA. 7 They were paid a daily salary that
reached P330.00 for a six (6)-day work week from 9:45 in the
JOLO'S KIDDIE CARTS/FUN4KIDS/MARLO U. morning until 9:00 o'clock in the evening. 8 They claimed that they
CABILI, petitioners, vs. EVELYN A. CABALLA and were never paid the monetary value of their unused service incentive
ANTHONY M. BAUTISTA,respondents. leaves, 13th month pay, overtime pay, and premium pay for work
during holidays; and that when petitioners found out that they
inquired from the Department of Labor and Employment about the
DECISION prevailing minimum wage rates, they were prohibited from reporting
to their work assignment without any justification. 9
For their part, 10 petitioners denied dismissing respondents
PERLAS-BERNABE, J p: and Colisao, and maintained that they were the ones who
abandoned their work. 11 They likewise maintained that they paid
Assailed in this petition for review on certiorari 1 are the respondents and Colisao their wages and other benefits in
Resolutions dated July 28, 2016 2 and February 22, 2017 3 of the accordance with the law and that their money claims were bereft of
Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. SP No. 146460 which dismissed factual and legal bases. 12
the petition for certiorari 4 filed by petitioners Jolo's Kiddie
Carts/Fun4Kids/Marlo U. Cabili (petitioners), due to a technical
ground, i.e., non-filing of a motion for reconsideration before filing a The Labor Arbiter's (LA) Ruling
petition for certiorari. cSEDTC
In a Decision 13 dated November 27, 2015, the LA dismissed In a Decision 18 dated April 28, 2016, the NLRC modified the
the case insofar as Colisao is concerned for failure to LA ruling, finding no illegal dismissal nor abandonment of work.
prosecute. 14However, the LA ruled in favor of respondents, and Accordingly, the NLRC ordered petitioners to reinstate respondents
accordingly, ordered petitioners to solidarily pay them the following, to their former or substantially equivalent positions without loss of
plus attorney's fees equivalent to ten percent (10%) of the total seniority rights and privileges; deleted the awards for payment of
monetary awards: backwages, separation pay, and moral and exemplary damages;
and affirmed the rest of the awards. 19 For this purpose, the NLRC
SeparationBackwages Wage 13th Moral Exemplary Total
attached a Computation of Monetary Award 20 detailing the
Pay Differential month damages damages
monetary awards due to respondents, as follows: (a) for Caballa,
pay
P15,623.00 as holiday pay, P109,870.80 as wage differential, and
Caballa 60,580.00 109,870.80 75,156.12 10,608.0010,000.00 5,000.00 P271,214.92 P75,156.12 as 13th month pay; (b) for Bautista, P15,623.00 as
holiday pay, P112,294.00 as wage differential, and P74,480.12 as
Bautista 60,580.00 112,294.00 74,480.12 10,608.0010,000.00 5,000.00 272,962.12
13th month pay; and (c) attorney's fees amounting to ten percent
–––––––––––– (10%) of the total monetary value awarded. 21
– Anent the procedural matters raised by petitioners, the NLRC
544,177.04 ruled that: (a) petitioners waived the issue of improper venue when
they failed to raise the same before the filing of position papers;
Plus 10% Attorney's Fees 54,417.70 and (b) respondents substantially complied with the requirement of
–––––––––––– verifying their position papers, and thus, the same is not fatal to their
– complaint. 22 As to the merits, while the NLRC agreed with the LA's
finding that there was no abandonment on the part of respondents,
GRAND TOTAL P598,594.7415 the latter were unable to adduce any proof that petitioners indeed
committed any overt or positive act operative of their dismissal. 23 In
The LA found that respondents' adequate substantiation of view of the finding that there was neither dismissal on the part of
their claim that they were no longer given any work assignment and petitioners nor abandonment on the part of respondents, the NLRC
were not allowed to go anywhere near their respective workstations, ordered the latter's reinstatement but without backwages. Finally, the
coupled with petitioners' failure to prove abandonment, justifies the NLRC held that respondents should be entitled to their holiday pay
finding that respondents were indeed dismissed without just cause as it is a statutory benefit which payment petitioners failed to
nor due process. 16 prove. 24
Aggrieved, petitioners appealed 17 to the NLRC. Dissatisfied, petitioners directly filed a petition
for certiorari 25 before the CA, without moving for reconsideration
before the NLRC. SDAaTC
The NLRC Ruling
The CA Ruling As a rule, the filing of a motion for reconsideration is a
condition sine qua non to the filing of a petition for certiorari. 31 The
In a Resolution 26 dated July 28, 2016, the CA denied the rationale for this requirement is that "the law intends to afford the
petition due to petitioners' failure to file a motion for reconsideration tribunal, board or office an opportunity to rectify the errors and
before the NLRC prior to the filing of a petition for certiorari before mistakes it may have lapsed into before resort to the courts of justice
the CA. It held that the prior filing of such motion before the lower can be had." 32 Notably, however, there are several recognized
tribunal is an indispensable requisite in elevating the case to the CA exceptions to the rule, one of which is when the order is a patent
via certiorari, and that petitioners' failure to do so resulted in the nullity. 33
NLRC ruling attaining finality. 27 In this case, records show that the LA ruled in favor of
Petitioners moved for reconsideration, 28 but the same was respondents, and accordingly, ordered petitioners to pay them the
denied in a Resolution 29 dated February 22, 2017; hence, this following monetary awards:
petition. 30 SeparationBackwages Wage 13th Moral Exemplary Total
Pay Differential month damages damages
pay
The Issue Before the Court
Caballa 60,580.00 109,870.80 75,156.12 10,608.0010,000.00 5,000.00 P271,214.92
The issues for the Court's resolution are whether or not the Bautista 60,580.00 112,294.00 74,480.12 10,608.0010,000.00 5,000.00 272,962.12
CA was correct in: (a) dismissing the petition for certiorari before it
due to petitioners' non-filing of a prior motion for reconsideration ––––––––––
before the NLRC; and (b) effectively affirming the NLRC ruling, –
which not only increased respondents' awards of wage differential 544,177.04
and 13th month pay, but also awarded an additional monetary award
as holiday pay. Plus 10% Attorney's Fees 54,417.70
––––––––––
The Court's Ruling –
GRAND TOTAL P598,594.74
The petition is partly meritorious.
Upon petitioners' appeal to the NLRC, the LA ruling was
modified, deleting the awards for separation pay, backwages, moral
I. damages, and exemplary damages, while affirming the awards for
wage differential and 13th month pay. In the Computation of
Monetary Award 34attached to the NLRC ruling — which according
to the NLRC itself, shall form part of its decision 35 — it was It must be stressed that to justify the grant of the extraordinary
indicated that Caballa's awards for wage differential and 13th month remedy of certiorari, petitioners must satisfactorily show that the
pay are in the amounts of P109,870.80 and P75,156.12, court or quasi-judicial authority gravely abused the discretion
respectively; while the awards in Bautista's favor were pegged at conferred upon it. Grave abuse of discretion connotes judgment
P112,294.00 and P74,480.12, respectively. However, a simple exercised in a capricious and whimsical manner that is tantamount
counterchecking of the NLRC's computation with the LA ruling to lack of jurisdiction. To be considered "grave," discretion must be
readily reveals that: (a) the amounts of P109,870.80 and exercised in a despotic manner by reason of passion or personal
P112,294.00 clearly pertain to the awards of backwages, which were hostility, and must be so patent and gross as to amount to an evasion
already deleted in the NLRC ruling; (b) the amounts of P75,156.12 of positive duty or to a virtual refusal to perform the duty enjoined by
and P74,480.12 pertain to the awards of wage differential; or to act at all in contemplation of law. 38
and (c) the amount of P10,608.00 which pertain to the awards of 13th
In labor cases, grave abuse of discretion may be ascribed to
month pay for both respondents, were no longer reflected in the the NLRC when its findings and conclusions are not supported by
NLRC computation. While this is obviously just an oversight on the substantial evidence, which refers to that amount of relevant
part of the NLRC, it is not without any implications as such oversight evidence that a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to justify
resulted in an unwarranted increase in the monetary awards due to a conclusion. Thus, if the NLRC's ruling has basis in the evidence
respondents. Clearly, such an increase is a patent nullity as it is and the applicable law and jurisprudence, then no grave abuse of
bereft of any factual and/or legal basis. discretion exists and the CA should so declare and, accordingly,
Verily, the CA erred in dismissing the petition dismiss the petition. 39
for certiorari filed before it based on the aforesaid technical ground,
Guided by the foregoing considerations and as will be
as petitioners were justified in pursuing a direct recourse to the CA explained hereunder, the Court finds that the NLRC did not gravely
even without first moving for reconsideration before the NLRC. In abuse its discretion in ruling that: (a) petitioners are barred from
such instance, court procedure dictates that the case be remanded raising improper venue and that the verification requirement in
to the CA for a resolution on the merits. However, when there is respondents' position paper was substantially complied with;
already enough basis on which a proper evaluation of the merits may and (b) respondents were neither dismissed by petitioners nor
be had, as in this case, the Court may dispense with the time- considered to have abandoned their jobs. However and as already
consuming procedure of remand in order to prevent further delays in discussed, the NLRC committed grave abuse of discretion
the disposition of the case and to better serve the ends of
amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction when it awarded
justice. 36 In view of the foregoing — as well as the fact that respondents increased monetary benefits without any factual and/or
petitioners pray for a resolution on the merits 37 — the Court finds it legal bases. acEHCD
appropriate to exhaustively resolve the instant case.

III.
II.
Anent the first procedural issue, petitioners insist that since The Court laid down the following guidelines
respondents worked in Cavite, they should have filed their complaint with respect to non-compliance with the requirements
before the Regional Arbitration Branch IV of the NLRC and not in on or submission of a defective verification and
Manila, pursuant to Section 1, Rule IV of the 2011 NLRC Rules of certification against forum shopping, viz.:
Procedure. As such, the LA in Manila where the complaint was filed 1) A distinction must be made between non-
had no jurisdiction to rule on the same. 40 However, such insistence compliance with the requirement on or submission of
is misplaced as the aforesaid provision of the 2011 Rules of defective verification, and non-compliance with the
Procedure clearly speaks of venue and not jurisdiction. Moreover, requirement on or submission of defective certification
paragraph (c) of the same provision explicitly provides that "[w]hen against forum shopping.
venue is not objected to before the first scheduled mandatory
conference, such issue shall be deemed waived." Here, the NLRC 2) As to verification, non-compliance
aptly pointed out that petitioners only raised improper venue for the therewith or a defect therein does not necessarily
first time in their position paper, 41and as such, they are deemed to render the pleading fatally defective. The court may
have waived the same. order its submission or correction or act on the
pleading if the attending circumstances are such
In this relation, Article 224 (formerly Article 217) 42 of that strict compliance with the Rule may be
the Labor Code, as amended, clearly provides that the LAs shall dispensed with in order that the ends of justice
have exclusive and original jurisdiction to hear and decide, inter alia,
may be served thereby.
termination disputes and money claims arising from employer-
employee relations, as in this case. As such, the LA clearly had 3) Verification is deemed substantially
jurisdiction to resolve respondents' complaint. complied with when one who has ample knowledge to
swear to the truth of the allegations in the complaint or
Another procedural issue raised by petitioners is that petition signs the verification, and when matters
respondents signed the Verification and Affidavit of Non-Forum alleged in the petition have been made in good faith or
Shopping attached to their Position Paper a day earlier than the date are true and correct.
such pleading was filed by their counsel. In this regard, petitioners
assert that such is a fatal infirmity that necessitates the dismissal of 4) As to certification against forum
respondents' complaint. 43 However, the NLRC correctly ruled that shopping, non-compliance therewith or a defect
respondents' substantial compliance with the requirement, coupled therein, unlike in verification, is generally not
with their meritorious claims against petitioners, necessitates curable by its subsequent submission or
dispensation with the strict compliance with the rules on verification correction thereof, unless there is a need to relax
and certification against forum shopping in order to better serve the the Rule on the ground of "substantial compliance"
ends of justice. InFernandez v. Villegas, 44 the Court held: or presence of "special circumstances or
compelling reasons."
5) The certification against forum shopping must compliance with the provisions on certification
be signed by all the plaintiffs or petitioners in a case; against forum shopping merely underscores its
otherwise, those who did not sign will be dropped as mandatory nature to the effect that the certification
parties to the case. Under reasonable or justifiable cannot altogether be dispensed with or its
circumstances, however, as when all the plaintiffs or requirements completely disregarded. It does not
petitioners share a common interest and involve a prohibit substantial compliance with the rules
common cause of action or defense, the signature of under justifiable circumstances, as also in this
only one of them in the certification against forum case. 45 (Emphases and underscoring supplied)
shopping substantially complies with the Rule.
6) Finally, the certification against forum IV.
shopping must be executed by the party-pleader, not
by his counsel. If, however, for reasonable or justifiable
reasons, the party-pleader is unable to sign, he must In Claudia's Kitchen, Inc. v. Tanguin, 46 the Court was faced
execute a Special Power of Attorney designating his with a situation where, on the one hand, the employee claimed she
counsel of record to sign on his behalf. was illegally dismissed by her employer; on the other, the employer
denied ever dismissing such employee and even accused the latter
xxx xxx xxx of abandoning her job, as in this case. In resolving the matter, the
Besides, it is settled that the verification of a Court extensively discussed:
pleading is only a formal, not a jurisdictional In cases of illegal dismissal, the employer bears
requirement intended to secure the assurance that the burden of proof to prove that the termination was
the matters alleged in a pleading are true and for a valid or authorized cause.But before the
correct. Therefore, the courts may simply order the employer must bear the burden of proving that the
correction of the pleadings or act on them and dismissal was legal, the employees must first
waive strict compliance with the rules, as in this establish by substantial evidence that indeed they
case. were dismissed. If there is no dismissal, then there
xxx xxx xxx can be no question as to the legality or illegality
thereof. In Machica v. Roosevelt Services Center, Inc.,
Similar to the rules on verification, the rules on the Court enunciated:
forum shopping are designed to promote and
facilitate the orderly administration of justice; The rule is that one who alleges
hence, it should not be interpreted with such a fact has the burden of proving it;
absolute literalness as to subvert its own ultimate thus, petitioners were burdened to
and legitimate objectives. The requirement of strict prove their allegation that
respondents dismissed them from
their employment. It must be stressed second element as the more
that the evidence to prove this fact must determinative factor and being
be clear, positive and convincing. The manifested by some overt acts.
rule that the employer bears the burden Otherwise stated, absence must be
of proof in illegal dismissal cases finds no accompanied by overt acts unerringly
application here because the pointing to the fact that the employee
respondents deny having dismissed the simply does not want to work anymore. It
petitioners. SDHTEC has been ruled that the employer has the
burden of proof to show a deliberate and
xxx xxx xxx
unjustified refusal of the employee to
The Court further agrees with the findings of the resume his employment without any
LA, the NLRC[,] and the CA that Tanguin was not guilty intention of returning. 47(Emphases and
of abandonment. Tan Brothers Corporation of Basilan underscoring supplied)
City v. Escudero extensively discussed abandonment
As aptly ruled by the NLRC, respondents failed to prove their
in labor cases:
allegation that petitioners dismissed them from work, as there was
As defined under established no indication as to how the latter prevented them from reporting to
jurisprudence, abandonment is the their work stations; or that the petitioners made any overt act that
deliberate and unjustified refusal of an would suggest that they indeed terminated respondents'
employee to resume his employment. It employment. 48 In the same vein, petitioners failed to prove that
constitutes neglect of duty and is a just respondents committed unequivocal acts that would clearly
cause for termination of employment constitute intent to abandon their employment. It may even be said
under paragraph (b) of Article 282 [now that respondents' failure to report for work may have been a direct
Article 296] of the Labor Code. To result of their belief, albeit misplaced, that they had already been
constitute abandonment, however, dismissed by petitioners. Such mistaken belief on the part of the
there must be a clear and deliberate employee should not lead to a drastic conclusion that he has chosen
intent to discontinue one's to abandon his work. 49 More importantly, respondents' filing of a
employment without any intention of complaint for illegal dismissal negates any intention on their part to
returning. In this regard, two elements sever their employment relations with petitioners. 50 To reiterate,
must concur: (1) failure to report for abandonment of position is a matter of intention and cannot be lightly
work or absence without valid or inferred, much less legally presumed, from certain equivocal acts. 51
justifiable reason; and (2) a clear
intention to sever the employer- In light of the finding that respondents neither abandoned their
employment nor were illegally dismissed by petitioners, it is only
employee relationship, with the
proper for the former to report back to work and for the latter to
reinstate them to their former positions or a substantially-equivalent finality of this Decision until fully paid, pursuant to prevailing
one in their stead. In this regard, jurisprudence provides that in jurisprudence. 54
instances where there was neither dismissal by the employer nor WHEREFORE, the petition is PARTLY GRANTED. The
abandonment by the employee, the proper remedy is to reinstate the Resolutions dated July 28, 2016 and February 22, 2017 of the Court
employee to his former position but without the award of of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 146460 are hereby SET ASIDE.
backwages. 52 Accordingly, the Decision dated April 28, 2016 of the National Labor
As for respondents' money claims for holiday pay, wage Relations Commission isAFFIRMED with MODIFICATION, ordering
differential, and 13th month pay, the NLRC properly observed that petitioners Jolo's Kiddie Carts/Fun4Kids/Marlo U. Cabili to pay:
petitioners failed to show that payment has been made. As such, a) Respondent Evelyn A. Caballa the amounts of P15,623.00
they must be held liable for the same. It is well-settled that "with as holiday pay, P75,156.12 as wage differential, and
respect to labor cases, the burden of proving payment of monetary P10,608.00 as 13th month pay, plus attorney's fees
claims rests on the employer, the rationale being that the pertinent amounting to ten percent (10%) of the aforesaid
personnel files, payrolls, records, remittances and other similar monetary awards. Further, said amounts shall then
documents — which will show that overtime, differentials, service earn legal interest at the rate of six percent (6%) per
incentive leave and other claims of workers have been paid — are annum from the finality of the Decision until fully paid;
not in the possession of the worker but in the custody and absolute and
control of the employer." 53 However and as already adverted to
earlier, the awards of wage differential and 13th month pay due to b) Respondent Anthony M. Bautista the amounts of
respondents must be adjusted to properly reflect the computation P15,623.00 as holiday pay, P74,480.12 as wage
made by the LA, in that: (a) Caballa is entitled to wage differential differential, and P10,608.00 as 13th month pay, plus
and 13th month pay in the amounts of P75,156.12 and P10,608.00, attorney's fees amounting to ten percent (10%) of the
respectively; while (b) Bautista's entitlement to such claims are in the aforesaid monetary awards. Further, said amounts
amounts of P74,480.12 and P10,608.00, respectively. shall then earn legal interest at the rate of six percent
(6%) per annum from the finality of the Decision until
In the same manner, the NLRC correctly awarded attorney's fully paid.
fees to respondents, in light of Article 111 (a) of the Labor
Code which states that: "[i]n cases of unlawful withholding of wages, Finally, the Temporary Restraining Order dated May 26, 2017
the culpable party may be assessed attorney's fees equivalent to ten issued in relation to this case is hereby LIFTED. The Decision dated
percent (10%) of the amount of wages recovered," as in this April 28, 2016 of the National Labor Relations Commission in NLRC
case. AScHCD NCR Case No. 03-03168-15 (NLRC LAC No. 02-000701-16), as
modified, shall be implemented in accordance with this Decision.
Finally, all monetary awards due to respondents shall earn
legal interest at the rate of six percent (6%) per annum from the SO ORDERED.
||| (Jolo's Kiddie Carts v. Caballa, G.R. No. 230682, [November 29, Conciliation conferences conducted by the National Conciliation and
2017]) Mediation Board (NCMB) failed to settle the dispute and resulted to
a strike staged by MEWA on 6 June 1991. In an Order dated 6 June
[G.R. No. 178379. August 22, 2017.] 1991, 6 then Acting Secretary Nieves R. Confesor of the Department
of Labor and Employment (DOLE) certified the labor dispute to the
CRISPIN S. FRONDOZO, * DANILO M. PEREZ, JOSE NLRC for compulsory arbitration, ordered all the striking workers to
A. ZAFRA, ARTURO B. VITO, CESAR S. CRUZ, return to work, and directed MERALCO to accept the striking workers
NAZARIO C. DELA CRUZ, and LUISITO R. back to work under the same terms and conditions existing prior to
DILOY, petitioners, vs. MANILA ELECTRIC the work stoppage.
COMPANY, respondent. On 26 July 1991, MERALCO terminated the services of
Crispin S. Frondozo (Frondozo), Danilo M. Perez (Perez), Jose A.
Zafra (Zafra), Arturo B. Vito (Vito), 7 Cesar S. Cruz (Cruz), Nazario
DECISION C. dela Cruz (N. dela Cruz), Luisito R. Diloy (Diloy), and Danilo D.
Dizon (Dizon) for having committed unlawful acts and violence
during the strike.
CARPIO, J p: On 25 July 1991, MEWA filed a second Notice of Strike
(second strike) on the ground of discrimination and union busting that
The Case resulted to the dismissal from employment of 25 union officers and
Before the Court is a petition for review workers. Then DOLE Secretary Ruben D. Torres issued an Order
on certiorari 1 assailing the 6 March 2007 Decision 2 and the 14 dated 8 August 1991 8 that certified the issues raised in the second
June 2007 Resolution 3 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. strike to the NLRC for consolidation with the first strike and strictly
95747. The Court of Appeals affirmed the 28 February 2006 enjoined any strike or lockout pending resolution of the labor dispute.
Resolution 4 and the 26 May 2006 Resolution 5 of the National The Order also directed MERALCO to suspend the effects of
Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) which granted the prayer for termination of the employees and re-admit the employees under the
preliminary injunction of respondent Manila Electric Company same terms and conditions without loss of seniority rights.
(MERALCO) and denied therein petitioners' motion for The labor dispute resulted to the filing of two complaints for
reconsideration. HTcADC illegal dismissal:
The Antecedent Facts (1) NLRC NCR Case No. 00-08-04146-92 filed by Dizon,
The case originated from a Notice of Strike (first strike) filed Diloy, Patricio Maniacop, Wilfredo Lagason,
on 16 May 1991 by the MERALCO Employees and Workers Venancio Arguzon, Jr., Rogelio Antonio, Lauro
Association (MEWA), composed of MERALCO's rank-and-file Garcia, Alfredo Badilla, Jr., and Reynaldo Javier;
employees, on the ground of Unfair Labor Practice (ULP). and
(2) NLRC NCR Case No. 00-12-06878-92 filed by Labor Arbiter Adolfo C. Babiano is directed to
MEWA, Reynaldo M. Caberte (Caberte), Alfredo continue handling this case and to submit periodic
dela Cruz (A. dela Cruz), Nataner F. Pingol report[s] thereon.
(Pingol), Vincent G. Rallos, Enrique T. Barrientos SO ORDERED. 10
(Barrientos), Melchor E. Banaga (Banaga), Zafra,
Perez, Vito, N. dela Cruz, Cruz, and Frondozo. However, in a Decision promulgated on 14 December
2001, 11 the NLRC First Division modified the 23 January 1998
The NLRC consolidated the two illegal dismissal cases with Decision and ruled:
NLRC NCR CC No. 000021-91 (In the Matter of the Labor Dispute
at the Manila Electric Company) and NLRC NCR Case No. 00-05- WHEREFORE, premises considered, the
03381-93 (MEWA v. MERALCO). On 23 January 1998, the NLRC's Decision of January 23, 1998 is hereby
First Division rendered a Decision, 9 the dispositive portion of which MODIFIED: aScITE
reads: 1. Declaring the illegality of the strike of June 6-8, 1991
WHEREFORE, judgment is hereby rendered: on the basis of the uncontested facts and allegations
of the respondent;
1. denying the motion for reconsideration of Patricio
Maniacop, et al. [the nine (9) quitclaiming 2. As a matter of consequence, the officers and
complainants] in NLRC Case No. 00-08-04146-92; members who participated therein and who committed
the illegal acts perforce are hereby deemed to have
2. upholding Meralco's dismissal of Jose A. Zafra, lost their employment status;
Alfredo dela Cruz, Reynaldo M. Caberte, Nataner F.
Pingol, Vincent G. Rallos, Enrique Barrientos, Danilo 3. The dismissal of complainants Jose Zafra, Vicente
M. Perez, Arturo B. Vito, Nazario C. dela Cruz, Melchor G. Rallos, Enrique T. Barrientos, Reynaldo M. Caberte,
E. Banaga, Cesar S. Cruz, and Crispin S. Frondozo in Cesar S. Cruz, Nazario C. dela Cruz, Arturo B. Vito,
view of the illegal acts they committed during the Melchor E. Banaga, Alfredo dela Cruz, Nataner F.
subject strike; Pingol, Danilo M. Perez, and Crispin S. Frondozo [is]
hereby declared unjustified, their participation in the
3. directing complainants Danilo Dizon and Luisito commission of the prohibited and illegal acts not having
Diloy as well as respondent Meralco to submit a
been proved;
memorandum of arguments relative to NLRC NCR
Case No. 00-08-04146-92; and 4. Accordingly, respondent is hereby ordered to
reinstate the twelve (12) complainants, without
4. directing MEWA and Meralco to submit however, payment of backwages, complainants
memorandum of arguments in support of their themselves having admitted participation in the strike.
respective position in NLRC NCR CC No. 000021-91.
SO ORDERED. 12
In an Order dated 29 May 2002, 13 the NLRC ruled on the On 30 May 2003, the Court of Appeals' Special Second
motions for reconsideration filed by MERALCO, Dizon and Diloy, and Division promulgated its Decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480 19 in
the 12 respondents in NLRC NCR Case No. 00-12-06878-92, as favor of MERALCO. The Court of Appeals found that the strike of 6-
follows: 8 June 1991 was illegal because it occurred despite an assumption
order by the DOLE Secretary and because of the commission of
WHEREFORE, premises considered, the
illegal acts marred with violence and coercion. The dispositive
Decision appealed from is, as it is hereby MODIFIED:
portion of the Decision reads:
ordering respondent MANILA ELECTRIC COMPANY
to reinstate to their former or equivalent positions WHEREFORE, premises considered, petition is
DANILO DIZON and LUISITO DILOY, without loss of hereby granted. The decision of the Labor Arbiter
seniority rights and payment of backwages computed dated 16 January 1998 and ruling of the NLRC dated
from the time of their dismissal. 23 January 1998 are reinstated. Private respondents
Jose Zafra, Vincent G. Rallos, Enrique T. Barrientos,
The rest of the decretal portion of the Decision
Reynaldo M. Caberte, Cesar S. Cruz, Nazario C. [d]ela
of December 14, 2001 stays.
Cruz, Arturo B. Vito, Melchor E. Banaga, Alfredo dela
SO ORDERED. 14 Cruz, Nataner F. Pingol, Danilo M. Perez, Crispin
From the 14 December 2001 Decision and 29 May 2002 S. Frondozo, Danilo Dizon and Luisito Diloy are
Order of the NLRC, two petitions for certiorari were filed before the dismissed from service.
Court of Appeals: SO ORDERED. 20
1. CA-G.R. SP No. 72480 filed by MERALCO; and In view of the 30 May 2003 Decision of the Court of Appeals'
2. CA-G.R. SP No. 72509 filed by Frondozo, Special Second Division dismissing the 14 respondents from the
Barrientos, Pingol, Caberte, Zafra, Perez, Cruz, A. dela service, MERALCO stopped their payroll reinstatement.
Cruz, and Banaga. On 11 June 2003, Labor Arbiter Guerrero approved the
MERALCO moved for the consolidation of the two cases but computation of backwages and ordered the issuance of a Writ of
the motion was denied. Execution for the satisfaction of the judgment award. MERALCO filed
a Manifestation calling the attention of Labor Arbiter Guerrero to the
On 31 July 2002, the NLRC issued an Entry of 30 May 2003 Decision of the Court of Appeals' Special Second
Judgment 15 stating that the 29 May 2002 NLRC Order became final Division in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480. In an Order dated 7 October
and executory on 19 July 2002. On 3 October 2002, Labor Arbiter 2003, Labor Arbiter Guerrero ruled that the Court of Appeals' 30 May
Veneranda C. Guerrero (Labor Arbiter Guerrero) issued a Writ of 2003 Decision had not attained finality and as such, respondents
Execution 16 directing the reinstatement of the 14 17respondents. In should be reinstated from the time they were removed from the
a Manifestation dated 24 January 2003, 18 MERALCO informed the payroll until their actual/payroll reinstatement based on their latest
NLRC of the payroll reinstatement of the 14 respondents. salary prior to their dismissal. An Alias Writ of Execution 21 was
issued on 10 October 2003 for the satisfaction of the judgment award filed a motion to quash the Second Alias Writ of Execution but it was
which resulted to the garnishment of MERALCO's funds deposited denied on 2 July 2004. On 20 July 2004, the Sheriff reported that the
with Equitable-PCI Bank. amount of P2,879,967.53 garnished funds had been delivered to and
deposited with the NLRC Cashier for the satisfaction of the monetary
Dizon, Diloy, and the other respondents filed their respective
award. 26 However, the reinstatement portion of the judgment
motions for reconsideration in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480, which the
remained unimplemented due to the failure of MERALCO to reinstate
Court of Appeals' (Former) Special Second Division denied in its 18
the respondents.
December 2003 Resolution.
On 6 February 2004, Dizon and Diloy filed a petition before
On 27 January 2004, the Court of Appeals' Fourteenth
this Court assailing the 30 May 2003 Decision and 18 December
Division promulgated its Decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 72509 22 as
2003 Resolution of the Court of Appeals' Special Second Division in
follows:
CA-G.R. SP No. 72480. The case was docketed as G.R. No. 161159.
WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, the
On 12 February 2004, Frondozo, Barrientos, Pingol, Caberte,
petition is PARTIALLY GIVEN DUE COURSE. The
Perez, Cruz, A. dela Cruz, and Banaga filed a petition before this
assailed Decision of December 14, 2001 and the Order
Court assailing the same 30 May 2003 Decision and 18 December
of May 29, 2002 of public respondent National Labor
2003 Resolution of the Court of Appeals' Special Second Division in
Relations Commission are hereby MODIFIED in that
CA-G.R. SP No. 72480. The case was docketed as G.R. No. 161311.
respondent MERALCO is ordered to pay the
petitioners full backwages computed from July 26, On 11 October 2004, MERALCO filed a petition before this
1991, when they were illegally dismissed, up to the Court questioning the 27 January 2004 and 17 August 2004 Decision
date of their actual reinstatement in the of the Court of Appeals' Fourteenth Division promulgated in CA-G.R.
service. HEITAD SP No. 72509. The case was docketed as G.R. No. 164998.
SO ORDERED. 23 In a Resolution dated 23 February 2004, 27 this Court's Third
Division denied the petition in G.R. No. 161159 on the ground that
MERALCO filed a motion for reconsideration but it was denied
the petitioners failed to show that a reversible error had been
in the Resolution of 17 August 2004.
committed by the Court of Appeals in rendering its Decision.
The respondents moved for the issuance of an Alias Writ of
In a Resolution dated 3 March 2004, the Court's Second
Execution for the satisfaction of their accrued wages arising from the
Division referred G.R. No. 161311 for consolidation with G.R. No.
recall of their payroll reinstatement. On 10 June 2004, Labor Arbiter
161159. 28
Guerrero granted the motion. On 14 June 2004, a Second Alias Writ
of Execution 24 was issued directing the Sheriff to cause the In a Resolution dated 24 May 2004, 29 the Court's Third
reinstatement of the respondents and to collect the amount of Division denied with finality the petitioners' motion for reconsideration
P2,851,453 representing backwages from 14 December 2001 to 15 of the 23 February 2004 Resolution denying the petition in G.R. No.
January 2003 and from 1 June 2003 to 1 June 2004. 25 MERALCO 161159 on the ground that no substantial arguments were raised to
warrant a reconsideration of the Court's Resolution. In the same In a Resolution dated 28 February 2006, 35 the NLRC
Resolution, the Court denied the petition in G.R. No. 161311 for granted the prayer for preliminary injunction of MERALCO. The
failure of petitioners therein to show that a reversible error had been NLRC considered the difficulty in proceeding with the execution
committed by the appellate court. given the conflicting decisions of the Court of Appeals' Special
Second Division in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480 and the Court of Appeals'
Petitioners in G.R. No. 161311 filed a motion for
Fourteenth Division in CA-G.R. SP No. 72509 that were also passed
reconsideration of the 24 May 2004 Resolution denying their petition.
upon by this Court, respectively, in G.R. Nos. 161159 and 161311
In its 28 July 2004 Resolution, 30the Court's Third Division denied
and in G.R. No. 164998. The NLRC ruled:
the motion with finality as no substantial arguments were raised to
warrant a reconsideration of the Resolution. At the outset, it must be stated that while this
Commission has broad powers within its sphere of
The 23 February 2004 Resolution became final and executory
jurisdiction, it cannot encroach on judicial power which
on 15 July 2004. 31 The 24 May 2004 Resolution became final and
is the exclusive domain of the courts. The Court of
executory on 2 September 2004. 32
Appeals has two contrasting rulings, one upholding the
In a Resolution dated 15 June 2005, 33 the Court's First legality of complainants' dismissal, and the other
Division denied the petition in G.R. No. 164998 for MERALCO's declaring such dismissal illegal. This Commission has
failure to file a reply, amounting to failure to prosecute. MERALCO no power to overrule what has been decided by the
filed a motion for reconsideration but it was denied in the Resolution courts. This is especially true with respect to judgments
of 22 August 2005. The 15 June 2005 Resolution became final and that have become final and executory not only at the
executory on 4 October 2005. 34 level of the Court of Appeals, but also of the Supreme
Meanwhile, MERALCO filed two motions before the NLRC: Court.
(1) a motion for reconsideration and/or appeal filed on 5 July 2004 Indeed, there is an insurmountable obstacle in
assailing the 10 June 2004 Order of Labor Arbiter Guerrero granting the execution of the decision favoring complainants. If
the issuance of the Second Alias Writ of Execution and directing the We let execution proceed, We will disregard the Court
payment of backwages of P2,851,453 to respondents and ordering of Appeals' ruling in the MERALCO petition. On the
their reinstatement actually or in the payroll, which was accompanied other hand, We cannot declare complainants to have
by a bond equivalent to the amount of the accrued backwages; and been legally dismissed as this will contravene the Court
(2) an urgent motion for the issuance of a temporary restraining order of Appeals' ruling in the Frondozo petition.
and/or preliminary injunction filed on 13 July 2004 directed against
Confronted with this dilemma, and in deference
the Second Alias Writ of Execution pending the resolution of its first
to the exercise of the judicial power as the courts may
motion.
find appropriate, this Commission has no recourse but
The Resolutions of the NLRC to enjoin all proceedings until the parties would have
exhausted all available judicial remedies toward the The Court of Appeals stated:
possible reconciliation of the contrasting decisions. In the case at bar, finality of the CA Decision in
WHEREFORE, there being no speedy or SP No. 72480 on May 24, 2004, is a supervening event
adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law, which transpired after the CA Decision in SP 72509
MERALCO's prayer for preliminary injunction is (which was in favor of petitioners) had become final
GRANTED. All proceedings with this Commission as and executory, and which decision directly contradicts
well as with the Labor Arbiter are hereby enjoined and the ruling in the said case. It may also be noted that the
suspended until further orders from the appropriate Resolution of the Supreme Court's Third Division in
court. ATICcS G.R. No. 161311 categorically declared that the
petition filed by herein petitioners is being denied for
SO ORDERED. 36
their failure to show that a reversible error has been
Two sets of respondents filed their respective motions for committed by the appellate court in rendering the
reconsideration. In its Resolution promulgated on 26 May decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480. Hence, with the
2006, 37 the NLRC denied the motions. denial with finality of the petition for review in G.R. No.
Frondozo, Perez, Zafra, Vito, Cruz, N. dela Cruz, and Diloy 161159 (161311) the CA Decision in SP
filed a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals assailing the 72480 upholding the dismissal of petitionershas clearly
28 February 2006 and 26 May 2006 Resolutions of the NLRC. become a legal obstacle to the enforcement of the final
and executory decision in SP 72509 which in effect
The Decision of the Court of Appeals declared petitioners to have been illegally dismissed
In its 6 March 2007 Decision, the Court of Appeals affirmed and upheld their right to back wages computed from
the 28 February 2006 and 26 May 2006 Resolutions of the NLRC. December 14, 2001 and up to the date of their actual
According to the Court of Appeals, MERALCO's recourse was due reinstatement.
to the two separate petitions before it (CA-G.R. SP No. 72480 and In fine, no grave abuse of discretion was
CA-G.R. SP No. 72509) that resulted in two contradictory rulings on committed by the NLRC in granting preliminary
the matter of petitioners' dismissal. The Court of Appeals injunction to private respondent MERALCO and
acknowledged that the execution of a final judgment is a matter of enjoining or suspending all proceedings for the
right on the part of the prevailing party and is mandatory and implementation of the 2nd alias writ of execution earlier
ministerial on the part of the court or tribunal issuing the judgment. issued by Labor Arbiter Guerrero with respect to the
However, the Court of Appeals stated that a suspension or refusal of back wages/monetary award and reinstatement of
execution of judgment or order on equitable grounds can be justified petitioners pursuant to the May 29, 2002 Decision of
when there are facts or events transpiring after the judgment or order the NLRC as affirmed/modified by the CA Decision in
had become final and executory, thus materially affecting the SP No. 72509.
judgment obligation.
As to the contention of petitioners that the NLRC SO ORDERED. 39 (Italicization in the original)
should have instead proceeded to reconcile or The petitioners in CA-G.R. SP No. 95747 filed a motion for
harmonize the conflicting decisions rendered by the reconsideration. In its 14 June 2007 Resolution, the Court of Appeals
two (2) divisions of the Court, We find the same denied the motion for lack of merit.
untenable and runs against established principles of
immutability of final judgments in this jurisdiction. In Hence, the petition for review filed before this Court
fact, nothing is more settled in law than that once a by Frondozo, Perez, Zafra, Vito, Cruz, N. dela Cruz, and Diloy. 40
judgment attains finality it thereby becomes immutable Petitioners alleged that the Court of Appeals committed grave
and unalterable. It may no longer be modified in any abuse of discretion in upholding the 28 February 2006 and 26 May
respect, even if modification is meant to correct what is 2006 Resolutions of the NLRC, in not passing upon the issues of
perceived to be an erroneous conclusion of fact or law, reinstatement and release of the garnished amount against
and regardless of whether the modification is MERALCO, and in ruling that the Decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480
attempted to be made by the court rendering it or by is considered a bar in the implementation of the Decision in CA-G.R.
the highest court of the land. SP No. 72509.
We cannot but concur with the NLRC's The Issue
pronouncement that MERALCO has no speedy and
adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law for the Whether the Court of Appeals committed a reversible error in
preservation of its rights and interests, at least insofar upholding the NLRC in issuing the writ of preliminary injunction
only and solely as to avoid the injurious consequences prayed for by MERALCO.
of the 2nd alias writ of execution relative to the The Ruling of this Court
reinstatement aspect of the final decision in CA-G.R.
No. SP 72509. 38 The petition has no merit.

The dispositive portion of the Court of Appeals' Decision The Court of Appeals cited the 2005 Revised Rules of
reads: Procedure of the NLRC which provides that "[u]pon issuance of the
entry of judgment, the Commission, motu proprio or upon motion by
WHEREFORE, premises considered, the the proper party, may cause the execution of the judgment in the
present petition is hereby DENIED DUE COURSE and certified case." According to the Court of Appeals, the 2005 Revised
accordingly DISMISSED for lack of merit. The Rules of Procedure of the NLRC did not make a distinction between
challenged Resolutions dated February 28, 2006 and decisions or resolutions decided by the Labor Arbiter and those
May 26, 2006 of the National Labor Relations decided by the Commission in certified cases when an order of
Commission are hereby AFFIRMED. reinstatement is involved. Thus, even when the employer had
No pronouncement as to costs. perfected an appeal, the Labor Arbiter must issue a writ of execution
for actual or payroll reinstatement of the employees illegally
dismissed from the service. The Court of Appeals also cited Article the promulgation of the 30 May 2003 Decision of the Court of
223 of the Labor Code which provides that the reinstatement aspect Appeals' Special Second Division, finding that the 6-8 June 1991
of the Labor Arbiter's Decision is immediately executory. strike was illegal, illegal acts marred with violence and coercion were
committed, and dismissing petitioners from the service, MERALCO
In this case, the applicable rule is Article 263 of the Labor
stopped the payroll reinstatement. This prompted petitioners to move
Code and the NLRC Manual on Execution of Judgment, as amended
for the issuance of an Alias Writ of Execution for the satisfaction of
by Resolution No. 02-02, series of 2002. Section 1, Rule III of the
their accrued wages arising from the recall of their payroll
NLRC Manual on Execution of Judgment provides: TIADCc
reinstatement which Labor Arbiter Guerrero granted on 10 June
Section 1. Execution Upon Final Judgment or 2004. Later, a second Alias Writ of Execution was issued.
Order. Execution shall issue only upon a judgment or
As both the NLRC and the Court of Appeals stated, they were
order that finally disposes of an action or proceeding,
confronted with two contradictory Decisions of two different Divisions
except in specific instances where the law provides for
of the Court of Appeals. The petitions questioning these two
execution pending appeal.
Decisions of the Court of Appeals were both denied by this Court and
Article 263 (i) of the Labor Code, on the other hand, provides: the denial attained finality. The Court of Appeals sustained the NLRC
(i) The Secretary of Labor and Employment, the that the 30 May 2003 Decision of the Court of Appeals' Special
Commission or the voluntary arbitrator shall decide or Second Division is a subsequent development that justified the
resolve the dispute within thirty (30) calendar days from suspension of the Alias Writs of Execution.
the date of the assumption of jurisdiction or the There are instances when writs of execution may be assailed.
certification or submission of the dispute, as the case They are:
may be. The decision of the President, the Secretary
(1) the writ of execution varies the judgment;
of Labor and Employment, the Commission or the
voluntary arbitrator shall be final and executory ten (10) (2) there has been a change in the situation of the
calendar days after receipt thereof by the parties. parties making execution inequitable or unjust;
A judicial review of the decisions of the NLRC may be filed before (3) execution is sought to be enforced against property
the Court of Appeals via a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of
exempt from execution;
the Rules of Court but the petition shall not stay the execution of the
assailed decision unless a restraining order is issued by the Court of (4) it appears that the controversy has been submitted
Appeals. 41 to the judgment of the court;
In this case, the NLRC issued an Entry of Judgment stating (5) the terms of the judgment are not clear enough and
that the 29 May 2002 NLRC Order became final and executory on there remains room for interpretation thereof; or
19 June 2002; a Writ of Execution was issued; and MERALCO (6) it appears that the writ of execution has been
complied with the payroll reinstatement of petitioners. However, with improvidently issued, or that it is defective in
substance, or issued against the wrong party, or that down for having been done with grave abuse of
the judgment debt has been paid or otherwise satisfied, discretion if the petitioner could manifestly show that
or the writ was issued without authority. 42 such act was patent and gross. x x x. 44
The situation in this case is analogous to a change in the Clearly, the NLRC did not act in a capricious, whimsical,
situation of the parties making execution unjust or inequitable. arbitrary, or despotic manner. It suspended the proceedings because
MERALCO's refusal to reinstate petitioners and to pay their it cannot revise or modify the conflicting Decisions of the Court of
backwages is justified by the 30 May 2003 Decision in CA-G.R. SP Appeals.
No. 72480. On the other hand, petitioners' insistence on the
However, we need to resolve the issue on the conflicting
execution of judgment is anchored on the 27 January 2004 Decision Decisions in order to put an end to this litigation.
of the Court of Appeals' Fourteenth Division in CA-G.R. SP No.
72509. Given this situation, we see no reversible error on the part of The Court of Appeals stated that "the finality of the CA
the Court of Appeals in holding that the NLRC did not commit grave Decision in SP No. 72480 on May 24, 2004, is a supervening event
abuse of discretion in suspending the proceedings. Grave abuse of which transpired after the CA Decision in SP No. 72509 (which was
discretion implies that the respondent court or tribunal acted in a in favor of petitioners) had become final and executory." 45 This is
capricious, whimsical, arbitrary or despotic manner in the exercise of not accurate. The Decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480 was
its jurisdiction as to be equivalent to lack of jurisdiction. 43 Thus, this promulgated on 30 May 2003. The Decision in CA-G.R. SP No.
Court declared: 72509 was promulgated on 27 January 2004. Even when the cases
were elevated to this Court, G.R. No. 161159 and G.R. No. 161311
The term "grave abuse of discretion" has a were resolved first before G.R. No. 164998. The Court's 23 February
specific meaning. An act of a court or tribunal can only 2004 Resolution and the 24 May 2004 Resolution, both favoring
be considered as with grave abuse of discretion when MERALCO, became final and executory on 15 July 2004 and 2
such act is done in a "capricious or whimsical exercise September 2004, respectively, while the Resolution of 15 June 2005
of judgment as is equivalent to lack of jurisdiction." The which denied MERALCO's petition for review became final and
abuse of discretion must be so patent and gross as to executory on 4 October 2005, over a year after the final resolutions
amount to an "evasion of a positive duty or to a virtual in G.R. Nos. 161159 and 161311. AIDSTE
refusal to perform a duty enjoined by law, or to act at
all in contemplation of law, as where the power is Further, contrary to the finding of the Court of Appeals that
exercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by CA-G.R. SP Nos. 72480 and 72509 attained finality without this
reason of passion and hostility." Furthermore, the use Court actually passing upon the merits of the illegal dismissal aspect,
of a petition for certiorari is restricted only to "truly this Court actually ruled on the merits of CA-G.R. SP No. 72480. The
extraordinary cases wherein the act of the lower court Court's Third Division denied the petition in G.R. No. 161159 in its 23
or quasi-judicial body is wholly void." From the February 2004 Resolution on the ground that the petitioners failed to
foregoing definition, it is clear that the special civil show that a reversible error had been committed by the Court of
action of certiorari under Rule 65 can only strike an act Appeals in rendering its Decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480. The
Court's Third Division also denied the petition in G.R. No. 161311 in MANILA ELECTRIC COMPANY, Petitioner,
its 24 May 2004 Resolution for failure of the petitioners to show that vs.
a reversible error had been committed by the appellate court in the JAN CARLO GALA, Respondent.
same case, CA-G.R. SP No. 72480. We resolve the petition for review on certiorari,1 seeking to annul the
In Agoy v. Araneta Center, Inc., 46 this Court explained that decision2 and the resolution3 of the Court of Appeals (CA) .
FACTS:
"[w]hen the Court does not find any reversible error in the decision of
the CA and denies the petition, there is no need for the Court to fully
explain its denial, since it already means that it agrees with and Respondent Jan Carlo Gala commenced employment with the
adopts the findings and conclusions of the CA. The decision sought petitioner Meralco Electric Company (Meralco) as a probationary
to be reviewed and set aside is correct." Hence, the Court's Third lineman. He was assigned at Meralco’s Valenzuela Sector. He initially
Division adopted the findings and conclusions reached by the Court served as member of the crew of Meralco’s Truck No. 1823 supervised
of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 72480 which dismissed petitioners by Foreman Narciso Matis. After one month, he joined the crew of
from the service. The finality of the denial of the petitions in G.R. Nos. Truck No. 1837 under the supervision of Foreman Raymundo Zuñiga,
161159 and 161311 should be given greater weight than the denial Sr.
of the petition in G.R. No. 164998 on technicality. It can also be Barely four months on the job, Gala was dismissed for alleged
interpreted that, in effect, the finality of the denial of the petitions in complicity in pilferages of Meralco’s electrical supplies, particularly, for
G.R. Nos. 161159 and 161311 also removed the jurisdiction of the the incident which took place on May 25, 2006. On that day, Gala and
Court's First Division and bound it to the final resolution in G.R. Nos. other Meralco workers were instructed to replace a worn-out electrical
161159 and 161311. The Court's First Division denied MERALCO's pole at the Pacheco Subdivision in Valenzuela City. Gala and the other
petition for failure to prosecute only on 15 June 2005, long after the linemen were directed to join Truck No. 1891, under the supervision of
denial of the petitions in G.R. Nos. 161159 and 161311 became final Foreman Nemecio Hipolito.
and executory on 15 July 2004 and 2 September 2004, respectively. Despite Gala’s explanation, Meralco proceeded with the investigation
WHEREFORE, we DENY the petition. We REMAND this and eventually terminated his employment on July 27, 2006.4 Gala
case to the National Labor Relations Commission for the execution responded by filing an illegal dismissal complaint against Meralco.5
of the 23 February 2004 and the 24 May 2004 Resolutions of this The Compulsory Arbitration Rulings
Court's Third Division in G.R. Nos. 161159 and 161311 in
accordance with this Decision. Labor Arbiter Teresita D. Castillon-Lora dismissed the complaint for
SO ORDERED. lack of merit. She held that Gala’s participation in the pilferage of
Meralco’s property rendered him unqualified to become a regular
||| (Frondozo v. Manila Electric Co., G.R. No. 178379, [August 22, employee.
2017]) Gala appealed to the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC). In
its decision of May 2, 2008,7 the NLRC reversed the labor arbiter’s
ARTICLE 227
ruling. It found that Gala had been illegally dismissed, since there was We find merit in the petition.
“no concrete showing of complicity with the alleged Contrary to the conclusions of the CA and the NLRC, there is
misconduct/dishonesty[.]”8 The NLRC, however, ruled out Gala’s substantial evidence supporting Meralco’s position that Gala had
reinstatement, stating that his tenure lasted only up to the end of his become unfit to continue his employment with the company. Gala was
probationary period. It awarded him backwages and attorney’s fees. found, after an administrative investigation, to have failed to meet the
Both parties moved for partial reconsideration; Gala, on the ground standards expected of him to become a regular employee and this
that he should have been reinstated with full backwages, damages and failure was mainly due to his “undeniable knowledge, if not
interests; and Meralco, on the ground that the NLRC erred in finding participation, in the pilferage activities done by their group, all to the
that Gala had been illegally dismissed. The NLRC denied the motions. prejudice of the Company’s interests.”21
Relying on the same grounds, Gala and Meralco elevated the case to The evidence on record established Gala’s presence in the worksite
the CA through a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of where the pilferage of company property happened.1âwphi1 It also
Court. established that it was not only on May 25, 2006 that Llanes, the
The CA Decision pilferer, had been seen during a Meralco operation. He had been
previously noticed by Meralco employees, including Gala (based on his
admission),23 in past operations. If Gala had seen Llanes in earlier
The CA denied Meralco’s petition for lack of merit and partially granted
projects or operations of the company, it is incredulous for him to say
Gala’s petition. It concurred with the NLRC that Gala had been illegally
that he did not know why Llanes was there or what Zuñiga and Llanes
dismissed, a ruling that was supported by the evidence. It opined that
were talking about. To our mind, the Meralco crew (the foremen and
nothing in the records show Gala’s knowledge of or complicity in the
the linemen) allowed or could have even asked Llanes to be there
pilferage. It found insufficient the joint affidavit10 of the members of
during their operations for one and only purpose — to serve as their
Meralco’s task force testifying that Gala and two other linemen knew
conduit for pilfered company supplies to be sold to ready buyers
Llanes.
outside Meralco worksites.
The CA modified the NLRC decision and ordered Gala’s reinstatement
We consider, too, and we find credible the company submission that
with full backwages and other benefits. The CA also denied Meralco’s
the Meralco crew who worked at the Pacheco Subdivision in
motion for reconsideration. Hence, the present petition for review on
Valenzuela City on May 25, 2006 had not been returning unused
certiorari.12
supplies and materials, to the prejudice of the company. From all
these, the allegedly hearsay evidence that is not competent in judicial
proceedings (as noted above), takes on special meaning and
ISSUE: relevance.
With respect to the video footage of the May 25, 2006 incident, Gala
Whether Gala’s reinstatement despite his probationary status is himself admitted that he viewed the tape during the administrative
proper. investigation, particularly in connection with the accusation against him
The Court’s Ruling that he allowed Llanes (binatilyong may kapansanan sa bibig) to board
the Meralco trucks.26 The choice of evidence belongs to a party and RESOLUTION
the mere fact that the video was shown to Gala indicates that the video
was not an evidence that Meralco was trying to suppress. Gala could
have, if he had wanted to, served a subpoena for the production of the QUISUMBING, J p:
video footage as evidence. The fact that he did not does not
strengthen his case nor weaken the case of Meralco. This petition for certiorari seeks the reversal and setting
On the whole, the totality of the circumstances obtaining in the case aside of the Decision 1 dated January 31, 2002 and the
convinces us that Gala could not but have knowledge of the pilferage Resolution 2 dated September 12,
of company electrical supplies on May 25, 2006; he was complicit in its 2002 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 65465. The
commission, if not by direct participation, certainly, by his inaction while appellate court had affirmed the January 30, 2001 3 and April 20,
it was being perpetrated and by not reporting the incident to company 2001 Resolutions of the National Labor Relations Commission
authorities. Thus, we find substantial evidence to support the (NLRC).
conclusion that Gala does not deserve to remain in Meralco’s employ
as a regular employee. He violated his probationary employment The factual antecedents of this case are as follows.
agreement, especially the requirement for him “to observe at all times Labor Arbiter Manuel M. Manansala found
the highest degree of transparency, selflessness and integrity in the petitioner Nationwide Security and Allied Services, Inc.,
performance of their duties and responsibilities[.]”27 He failed to qualify a security agency, not liable for illegal dismissal in NLRC NCR 00-
as a regular employee.28 01-00833-96 and 00-02-01129-96 involving eight security guards
For ignoring the evidence in this case, the NLRC committed grave who were employees of the petitioner. However, the Labor Arbiter
abuse of discretion and, in sustaining the NLRC, the CA committed a directed the petitioner to pay the aforementioned security guards
reversible error. P81,750.00 in separation pay, P8,700.00 in unpaid salaries,
WHEREFORE, premises considered, the petition is GRANTED. The P93,795.68 for underpayment and 10% attorney's fees based on the
assailed decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals are SET total monetary award. 4
ASIDE. The complaint is DISMISSED for lack of merit.
Dissatisfied with the decision, petitioner appealed to the
NLRC which dismissed its appeal for two reasons — first, for having
been filed beyond the reglementary period within which to perfect the
NATIONWIDE SECURITY AND ALLIED SERVICES, appeal and second, for filing an insufficient appeal bond. It disposed
INC., petitioner, vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS, as follows:
NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION and
WHEREFORE, in the light of the foregoing, it is
JOSEPH DIMPAZ, HIPOLITO LOPEZ, EDWARD
hereby ordered that:
ODATO, FELICISIMO PABON and JOHNNY
AGBAY, respondents. 1. the instant appeal be considered DISMISSED;
and,
2. the Decision appealed from be deemed FINAL controlling and it is the spirit and
and EXECUTORY. aCIHcD [i]ntention of this Code that the Commission
and its members and Labor Arbiters shall use
SO ORDERED. 5
every and all reasonable means to ascertain
Its motion for reconsideration having been denied, petitioner the facts in each case speedily and objectively
then appealed to the Court of Appeals to have the appeal resolved and without [regard] to technicalities of law or
on the merits rather than on pure technicalities in the interest of due procedure, all [i]n the interest of due process."
process. Emphasis added.
The Court of Appeals dismissed the case, holding that in a II.
special action for certiorari, the burden is on petitioner to prove not
merely reversible error, but grave abuse of discretion amounting to WHETHER OR NOT THE DOCTRINE IN THE
lack of or excess of jurisdiction on the part of public respondent CASE OF STAR ANGEL HANDICRAFT vs. NLRC, et
NLRC. The dispositive portion of its decision states: al., 236 SCRA 580 AND ROSEWOOD PROCESSING,
INC. VS. NLRC, G.R. [No.] 116476, May 21, 1998
WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, the FINDS APPLICATION IN THE INSTANT CASE
petition is hereby DISMISSED. The questioned [;] TSacAE
Resolutions dated 30 January 2001 and 20 April
2001 of the National Labor Relations Commission are III.
accordingly AFFIRMED. WHETHER OR NOT SEPARATION PAY IS
SO ORDERED. 6 JUSTIFIED AS AWARD IN CASES WHERE THE
EMPLOYEE IS TERMINATED DUE TO CONTRACT
The Court of Appeals likewise denied the petitioner's motion EXPIRATION AS IN THE INSTANT CASE; AND
for reconsideration. 7 Hence, this petition which raises the following
issues: IV.
I. WHETHER OR NOT THE REQUIREMENT ON
CERTIFICATION AGAINST FORUM SHOPPING
WHETHER OR NOT TECHNICALITIES IN WHICH WAS RAISED BEFORE THE NLRC IS
LABOR CASES MUST PREVAIL OVER THE SPIRIT ENFORCEABLE IN THE INSTANT CASE. 8
AND INTENTION OF THE LABOR CODE UNDER
ARTICLE 221 THEREOF WHICH STATES: Petitioner contends that the Court of Appeals erred when it
dismissed its case based on technicalities while the private
"In any proceeding before the Commission respondents contend that the appeal to the NLRC had not been
or any of the Labor Arbiters, the rules of evidence perfected, since the appeal was filed outside the reglementary
prevailing in courts of Law or equity shall not be period, and the bond was insufficient. 9 AECacT
After considering all the circumstances in this case and the (a) If there is prima
submission by the parties, we are in agreement that the petition lacks facie evidence of abuse of discretion on the part of the
merit. Labor Arbiter;
At the outset it must be pointed out here that the petition (b) If the decision, order or award was secured
for certiorari filed with the Court by petitioner under Rule 65 of the through fraud or coercion, including graft and
Rules of Court is inappropriate. The proper remedy is a petition for corruption;
review under Rule 45 purely on questions of law. There being a (c) If made purely on questions of law, and
remedy of appeal via petition for review under Rule 45 of the
Rules of Court available to the petitioner, the filing of a petition (d) If serious errors in the findings of facts are
for certiorari under Rule 65 is improper. raised which would cause grave or irreparable damage
or injury to the appellant.
But even if we bend our Rules to allow the present petition
for certiorari, still it will not prosper because we do not find any grave In case of a judgment involving a monetary
abuse of discretion amounting to lack of or excess of jurisdiction on award, an appeal by the employer may be perfected
the part of the Court of Appeals when it dismissed the only upon the posting of a cash or surety bond issued
petition of the security agency. We must stress that under Rule 65, by a reputable bonding company duly accredited by the
the abuse of discretion must be so patent and gross as to amount to Commission in the amount equivalent to the monetary
an evasion of positive duty or to a virtual refusal to perform a duty award in the judgment appealed from.
enjoined by law, or to act at all in contemplation of law, as where the xxx xxx xxx
power is exercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by
reason of passion or personal hostility. 10 No such The New Rules of Procedure of the NLRC states:
abuse of discretion happened here. The assailed decision by Section 1. Periods of appeal. — Decisions,
the Court of Appeals was certainly not capricious nor arbitrary, nor resolutions or orders of the Labor Arbiter shall be final
was it a whimsical exercise of judgment amounting to a and executory unless appealed to the Commission by
lack of jurisdiction. 11 TIEHDC any or both parties within ten (10) calendar days from
The Labor Code provides as follows: receipt thereof; and in case of decisions, resolutions or
orders of the Regional Director of the
ART. 223. Appeal. — Decisions, awards, or Department of Labor and Employment pursuant to
orders of the Labor Arbiter are final and executory Article 129 of the Labor Code, within five (5) calendar
unless appealed to the Commission by any or both days from receipt thereof. If the 10th or 5th day, as the
parties within ten (10) calendar days from case may be, falls on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday,
receipt of such decisions, awards, or orders. Such the last day to perfect the appeal shall be the first
appeal may be entertained only on any of the following
grounds:
working day following such Saturday, Sunday or Clearly, the NLRC committed no grave abuse of discretion in
holiday. dismissing the appeal before it. It follows that the Court of Appeals,
too, did not err, nor gravely abuse its discretion, in sustaining the
No motion or request for extension of the period
NLRC Order, by dismissing the petition for certiorari before it. Hence,
within which to perfect an appeal shall be allowed.
with the primordial issue resolved, we find no need to tarry on the
In the instant case, both the NLRC and other issues raised by petitioner.
the Court of Appeals found that petitioner received the
WHEREFORE, the Decision dated January 31, 2002 and the
decision of the Labor Arbiter on July 16, 1999. This factual finding is
Resolution dated September 12,
supported by sufficient evidence, 12 and we take it as binding on us.
2002 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 65465 are
Petitioner then simultaneously filed its "Appeal Memorandum",
AFFIRMED. Costs against petitioner.
"Notice of Appeal" and "Motion to Reduce Bond", by registered mail
on July 29, 1999, under Registry Receipt No. 003098. 13 These SO ORDERED.
were received by the NLRC on July 30, 1999. 14 The appeal to the ||| (Nationwide Security and Allied Services, Inc. v. Court of Appeals,
NLRC should have been perfected, as provided by its Rules, within a
G.R. No. 155844 (Resolution), [July 14, 2008], 580 PHIL 135-143)
period of 10 days from receipt by petitionerof the decision on July 16,
1999. Clearly, the filing of the appeal — three days after July 26, DIAMOND TAXI and/or BRYAN ONG v. FELIPE LLAMAS, JR.
1999 — was already beyond the reglementary period and in
violation of the NLRC Rules and the pertinent Article on Appeal in FACTS: Respondent Llamas, a taxi driver for petitioner Diamond Taxi
the Labor Code. CHDAEc (owned and operated by Petitioner Bryan Ong), filed a complaint for
Failure to perfect an appeal renders the decision final and illegal dismissal against petitioner before the Labor Arbiter. Denying
executory. 15 The right to appeal is a statutory right and one who the charge against them, petitioners alleged that respondent has been
seeks to avail of the right must comply with the statute or the rules. absent without official leave for several days from July 14, 2005 until
The rules, particularly the requirements for perfecting an appeal August 1, 2005. They submitted a copy of the attendance logbook
within the reglementary period specified in the law, must be strictly showing that respondent has been absent on the said dates. They
followed as they are considered indispensable interdictions against claimed that respondent has violated several traffic regulations in the
needless delays and for the orderly discharge of judicial years of 2000-2005 and that they issued to him several memoranda for
business.16 It is only in highly meritorious cases that this Court will insubordination and refusal to heed management instructions. They
opt not to strictly apply the rules and thus prevent a grave injustice further claimed that the aforementioned acts constituted as grounds for
from being done. 17 The exception does not obtain here. Thus, we the termination of Llamas Employment.
are in agreement that the decision of the Labor Arbiter already
became final and executory because petitioner failed to file the Llamas failed to seasonably file his position paper. Hence, the Labor
appeal within 10 calendar days from receipt of the decision. Arbiter dismissed respondent complaint for lack of merit. Respondent
filed his position paper and claimed that he failed to seasonably file his
position paper because his previous counsel, despite his repeated for giving him the key to his assigned taxi cab. These acts amounted to
pleas, had continuously deferred compliance with the LA orders for its constructive dismissal. The CA additionally noted that Llamas
submission. Hence, he was forced to secure the services of another immediately filed the illegal dismissal case that proved his desire to
counsel in order to comply with the LA directive. return to work and negates the charge of abandonment.
ISSUES: [1] Whether or not the CA encroached on the NLRC
In his position paper, Llamas alleged that he had a misunderstanding exclusive jurisdiction to review the merits of the LA decision?
with Aljuver Ong, Bryan brother and operations manager of Diamond [2] Whether or not the NLRC committed grave abuse of discretion
Taxi, on July 13, 2005. He reported for work on July 14, 2005 but in dismissing Llamas' appeal on mere technicality?
Bryan refused to give him the key to his assigned taxi cab unless he [3] Whether or not Llamas abandoned his work?
would sign a prepared resignation letter. He did not sign the
resignation letter. He reported for work again on July 15 and 16, 2005, HELD: The Court found no error in the course that the CA took in
but Bryan insisted that he sign the resignation letter prior to the release resolving Llamas' petition for certiorari. The CA may resolve factual
of the key to his assigned taxi cab. Hence, the filing of the illegal issues by express legal mandate and pursuant to its equity jurisdiction.
dismissal complaint.
The CA, in labor cases elevated to it via petition for certiorari, can grant
Llamas filed before the LA a motion for reconsideration of its decision prerogative writs when it finds that the NLRC acted with grave abuse of
dismissing his complaint. The LA treated Llamas Motion as an appeal. discretion in arriving at its factual conclusions. To make this finding, the
The NLRC dismissed for non-perfection Llamas Motion. It pointed out CA necessarily has to view the evidence if only to determine if the
that Llamas failed to attach the required certification of non-forum NLRC ruling had basis in evidence. It is in the sense and manner that
shopping per Section 4, Rule VI of the 2005 NLRC Rules. Llamas the CA, in a Rule 65 certiorari petition before it, had to determine
moved to reconsider NLRC resolution and attached the required whether grave abuse of discretion on factual issues attended the
certification of non-forum shopping in his motion but the same was NLRC dismissal of Llamas' appeal.
denied which impelled Llamas to file a petition for certiorari before the
CA. Dismissal of an appeal based on mere technicalities inconsistent
to the constitutional mandate to protect labor
The CA reversed and set aside the assailed NLRC resolution and ruled
that the NLRC had acted with grave abuse of discretion when it The Court agreed with the CA in ruling that the NLRC committed grave
dismissed Llamas' appeal purely on a technicality. The CA ruled further abuse of discretion in dismissing Llamas' appeal.
that petitioners failed to prove overt acts showing Llamas' clear
intention to abandon his job. It was found, however, that petitioners Article 227 of the Labor Code mandates that the Commission and its
placed Llamas in a situation where he was forced to quit as his members and the Labor Arbiters shall use every and all reasonable
continued employment has been rendered impossible, unreasonable means to ascertain the facts in each case speedily and objectively and
or unlikely, i.e., making him sign a resignation letter as a precondition without regard to technicalities of law or procedure, all in the interest of
due process. A strict and rigid application, which would result in On 30 October 2004, the Labor Arbiter found the dismissal of 5,984
technicalities that tend to frustrate rather than promote substantial Aris employees illegal and awarded them monetary benefits amounting
justice, should not be allowed. to P3,453,664,710.86.

The CA correctly regarded the respondent as constructively dismissed. The Corporations filed a Notice of Appeal with Motion to Reduce
Constructive dismissal exists when there is cessation of work because Appeal Bond. They posted a P4.5 Million bond. The NLRC granted
continued employment is rendered impossible, unreasonable or the reduction of the appeal bond and ordered the Corporations to post
unlikely. an additional P4.5 Million bond.
The 5,984 former Aris employees, represented by Emilinda Macatlang
Petitioners failed to establish the alleged abandonment of respondent. (Macatlang petition), filed a petition for review before the Court of
Mere absence of the employee does not constitute abandonment. It Appeals insisting that the appeal was not perfected due to failure of the
was pointed out by the CA that Llamas filed the complaint two days Corporations to post the correct amount of the bond which is...
from the third time he was refused access to his assigned taxi cab. equivalent to the judgment award.
Respondent could not be deemed to have abandoned his work.
The Court of Appeals, on 26 March 2007, ordered the Corporations to
Samarca v. Arc-Men Industries, Inc., 459 Phil. 506 laid down the post an additional appeal bond of P1 Billion.
elements of abandonment: 1) x x x the employee must have failed to In our Decision dated 4 June 2014, we modified the Court of Appeals'
report for work or must have been absent without valid or justifiable Decision
reason; and (2) x x x there must have been a clear intention [on the
part of the employee] to sever the employer-employee relationship The Corporations are directed to post P725 Million, in cash or surety
manifested by some overt act. DENIED. bond, within TEN (10) days from the receipt of this DECISION.
Issues:
SARA LEE PHILIPPINES v. EMILINDA D. MACATLANG, GR No. The Corporations score this Court for failing to consider the ruling in
180147, 2015-01-14 McBurnie v. Ganzon[4] which purportedly required only the posting of a
bond equivalent to 10% of the monetary award.
Facts:
Ruling:
In the Decision dated 4 June 2014, this Court directed SLPI, Aris, SLC,
Cesar Cruz, and FAPI, collectively known as the Corporations, to post The Corporations gravely misappreciated the ruling in McBurnie. The
P725 Million, in cash or surety bond, within 10 days from the receipt of 10% requirement pertains to the reasonable amount which the NLRC
the Decision. would accept as the minimum of the bond that should accompany the
motion to reduce bond in order to suspend the period to perfect an...
appeal under the NLRC rules. The 10% is based on the judgment
award and should in no case be construed as the minimum amount of between the parties after they entered into a compromise agreement
bond to be posted in order to perfect appeal. which covered all claims and causes of action they had against each
McBurnie made it clear that the... percentage of bond set is provisional other in relation to the respondents' employment. The respondents
opposed the motion, contending that the causes of action in the present
The NLRC retains its authority and duty to resolve the motion and case are different from the causes of action settled in the case the
determine... the final amount of bond that shall be posted by the petitioners cited
appellant, still in accordance with the standards of "meritorious
grounds" and "reasonable amount." Should the NLRC, after LA: upheld the petitioners' position and dismissed the complaint on
considering the motion's merit, determine that a greater amount or the grounds of forum shopping.
full amount of the bond needs to... be posted by the appellant, then the
party shall comply accordingly. The appellant shall be given a period of NLRC: held that the respondents could not have committed forum
10 days from notice of the NLRC order within which to perfect the shopping as there was no identity of causes of action between the two
appeal by posting the required appeal bond. cases.

DELA ROSA LINER VS. BORELA CA: found no grave abuse of discretion in the NLRC ruling that the
respondents did not commit forum shopping when they filed their second
GR NO: 207286
complaint.
DATE: July 29, 2015
ISSUE: Whether or not the second complaint is barred by the rule on
PETITIONER: DELA ROSA LINER, INC. AND/OR ROSAURO DELA forum shopping or by the principle of res judicata.
ROSA, SR AND NORA DELAROSA
HELD: NO. Contrary to the petitioners' submission, respondents' second
RESPONDENTS: CALIXTO B. BORELA AND ESTELO A. AMARILE complaint, a money claim, is not a "similar case" to the first complaint.
Thus, the filing of the second complaint did not constitute forum
shopping and the judgment in the first case is not a res judicata ruling
Facts: On September 23, 2011, respondents Calixto Borela, bus driver,
that bars the second complaint
and Estelo Amarille, conductor, filed separate complaints (later
consolidated) against petitioners Dela Rosa Liner, Inc., a public The first complaint charged the petitioners with illegal dismissal
transport company for underpayment/non- payment of salaries and and unfair labor practice; while the second complaint was based on the
other benefits, and violation of Wage Order Nos. 13, 14, 15 and 16. petitioners' alleged nonpayment/underpayment of their salaries and
monetary benefits, and violation of several wage orders. As the CA aptly
In a motion dated October 26, 2011, the petitioners asked the
cited, the elements of forum shopping are: (1) identity of parties; (2)
labor arbiter to dismiss the case for forum shopping. They alleged that
identity of rights asserted and relief prayed for, the relief being founded
on September 28, 2011, the CA 13th Division disposed of a similar case
on the same facts; and (3) identity of the two preceding particulars such
that any judgment rendered in the other action will, regardless of which A conditional settlement of a judgment award may be treated
party is successful, amount to res judicata in the action under as a compromise agreement and a judgment on the merits of the
consideration. We concur with the CA that forum shopping and res case if it turns out to be highly prejudicial to one of the parties.
judicata are not applicable in the present case. There is no identity of This resolves the Petition for Review on Certiorari 1 filed
rights asserted and reliefs prayed for, and the judgment rendered in the by Magsaysay Maritime Corporation, Eduardo Manese, 2 and
previous action will not amount to res judicata in the action now under Princess Cruise Lines, Limited (petitioners) assailing the August 17,
consideration. There is also no identity of causes of action in the first 2012 Decision 3 and October 19, 2012 Resolution 4 of the Court of
complaint and in the second complaint because the same facts or Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 119393. The assailed Court of Appeals
evidence would not support both actions. Decision upheld the November 24, 2010 Decision 5 and February
28, 2011 Resolution 6 of the National Labor Relations Commission
We likewise cannot accept the compromise agreement's in NLRC NCR LAC No. 08-000481-09 (NLRC NCR No. (M) 09-
application "to all claims and damages or losses either party may have 13352-08).
against each other whether those damages or losses are known or On February 28, 2006, Magsaysay Maritime Corporation
unknown, foreseen or unforeseen." This coverage is too sweeping and (Magsaysay), the local manning agent of Princess Cruise Lines,
effectively excludes any claims by the respondents against the Limited, hired Bernardine De Jesus (Bernardine) as an
petitioners, including those that by law and jurisprudence cannot be Accommodation Supervisor for the cruise ship Regal Princess.
waived without appropriate consideration such as nonpayment or Based on the contract of employment 7 that he signed, Bernardine
underpayment of overtime pay and wages. was to receive a basic monthly wage of US$388.00 for a period of
10 months. AIDSTE
MAGSAYSAY MARITIME CORPORATION/EDUARD On March 9, 2006, Bernardine boarded Regal Princess and
O MANESE and PRINCESS CRUISE LINES, he eventually disembarked 10 months later, or on January 16, 2007,
LTD., petitioners, vs. after his contract of employment ended. 8
CYNTHIA DE JESUS, respondent.
Bernardine was soon diagnosed with Aortic Aneurysm and on
March 15, 2007, he had a coronary angiography. On March 21, 2007,
he underwent a Left Axillofemoral Bypass. 9 He died on March 26,
DECISION 2007. 10
On September 24, 2008, respondent
Cynthia De Jesus (Cynthia), Bernardine's widow, filed a
LEONEN, J p: complaint 11 against Magsaysay for "payment of death benefits,
medical expenses, sickness allowance, damages, and attorney's
fees." 12 Cynthia and Magsaysay were unable to amicably settle the
case; hence, they were directed to submit their respective position The National Labor Relations Commission upheld the Labor
papers. 13 Arbiter's finding that Bernardine's cardio-vascular disease was work-
related. 19
On June 30, 2009, the Labor Arbiter granted Cynthia's
complaint and directed Magsaysay to pay her claims for death The National Labor Relations Commission also noted that
benefits, additional benefits, burial expenses, and attorney's fees. 14 while the general rule in compensability of death is that a seafarer's
death must have occurred during the term of the employment
The Labor Arbiter ruled that it was highly improbable that
contract, an exception to this rule is when a seafarer contracted an
Bernardine developed a cardio-vascular disease which would lead
illness while under the contract and this illness caused his death: 20
to his death merely two (2) months after his repatriation. 15
In such case, even if the seaman died after the term of
The Labor Arbiter held that Cynthia sufficiently established
the contract, his beneficiaries are entitled to death
that her husband suffered chest pains while he was still aboard the
compensation and benefits. Thus, [w]here a seaman
Regal Princess. She claimed that he had reported his condition but
contracts an illness during the term of his employment
he was not provided with medical attention. Furthermore, he had also
and such illness causes the death of the seaman even
asked for medical attention upon his repatriation, but his request was
after the term of his contract, the beneficiaries of the
once again denied. 16 The dispositive portion of the Labor Arbiter
seaman are entitled, as a matter of right, to death
Decision read:
compensation and benefits. 21
WHEREFORE, foregoing premises considered,
As for Bernardine's failure to submit himself to a post-
judgment is hereby rendered finding respondents liable
employment medical examination, the National Labor Relations
to pay, jointly and severally, complainant's claims for
Commission remarked that this Court had already ruled that it could
death benefits under the POEA Standard Employment
be dispensed with. Furthermore, the National Labor Relations
Contract, amounting to US$50,000.00 and additional
Commission pointed out that the failure to undergo a post-
benefits amounting to US$21,000.00 for complainant's
employment medical examination within three (3) days from
three (3) minor children, in Philippine currency at the
repatriation leads to the forfeiture of medical benefits and sickness
prevailing rate of exchange at the time of payment;
allowance, not death benefits. 22 The dispositive portion of the
US$1,000.00 representing burial expenses; and
National Labor Relations Commission Decision read:
attorney's fees of ten percent (10%) of the total
monetary award. WHEREFORE, the Decision of the labor arbiter
a quo dated June 30, 2009 rendered in NLRC NCR
All other claims are denied.
Case No. (M) 09-13352-08 is hereby AFFIRMED in
SO ORDERED. 17 toto.
On November 24, 2010, the National Labor Relations SO ORDERED. 23 (Emphasis in the original)
Commission 18 denied Magsaysay's appeal.
On May 13, 2011, Magsaysay filed a Petition Agency Standard Employment Contract (POEA-SEC) because he
for Certiorari 24 before the Court of Appeals. died after his contract of employment was terminated. 35 Petitioners
put forth that "[f]rom then on, petitioners' responsibilities and
On June 30, 2011, Magsaysay paid Cynthia P3,370,514.40
obligations to the deceased seafarer had ceased." 36
as conditional satisfaction of the judgment award against it and
without prejudice to its Petition for Certiorari pending before the Petitioners also highlight that Bernardine was not repatriated
Court of Appeals. 25 due to illness but because of the completion of his
contract. 37 Additionally, Bernardine failed to submit himself to a
On July 1, 2011, in light of the conditional settlement between
post-employment medical examination within three (3) days from his
the parties, the Labor Arbiter considered the case closed and
repatriation, as required by the POEA-SEC. Thus, petitioners claim
terminated but without prejudice to Magsaysay's pending petition
that there was no basis for the death benefits claimed by Cynthia.
before the Court of Appeals. 26
Petitioners point out that Bernardine did not complain of any illness
On August 17, 2012, the Court of Appeals 27 dismissed the during the de-briefing session conducted before his repatriation. 38
petition for being moot and academic. 28 On October 19, 2012, the
Nonetheless, even if Bernardine complied with the rule on
Court of Appeals 29 denied Magsaysay's motion for
post-employment medical examination, petitioners contend that
reconsideration. 30
Aortic Aneurysm, which caused Bernardine's death, was not a
On December 19, 2012, petitioners filed their Petition for compensable occupational disease under the POEA-SEC. They
Review on Certiorari 31 where they continue to assert that the Court aver that it cannot be presumed that the cause of his death was work-
of Appeals erred in dismissing their Petition for Certiorari for being related. They posit that respondent utterly failed to substantiate her
moot and academic. Petitioners emphasize that Leonis Navigation v. claim that her husband's death was work-related. 39
Villamater 32 stated that if the Court of Appeals grants a petition
for certiorari, the assailed decision of the National Labor Relations On February 13, 2013, this Court required respondent Cynthia
Commission will become void ab initio and will never attain to comment on the Petition for Review. 40
finality. 33 On May 3, 2013, respondent filed her Comment 41 where she
stresses that the ruling in Career Philippines Ship Management, Inc.
Petitioners maintain that Leonis ruled that even if the
v. Madjus 42 is applicable to her case since both cases pertain to
employer voluntarily pays the judgment award, the seafarer's
voluntary satisfaction of claims for death benefits. 43 Furthermore,
beneficiary is estopped from claiming that the controversy has ended
just like in Career Philippines, by accepting the monetary award from
with the Labor Arbiter's Order closing and terminating the case. This
petitioners, respondent will no longer have any available remedy
is because the beneficiary acknowledged that the payment received
against them, while petitioners are still free to pursue any of the
"was without prejudice to the final outcome of the petition
for certiorari pending before the [Court of Appeals]." 34 remedies available to them. 44
Respondent also argues that the issues raised before this
Furthermore, petitioners claim that Bernardine's death was
Court are the same factual issues already threshed out before the
not compensable under the Philippine Overseas Employment
Court of Appeals and the National Labor Relations Commission. the payment made to respondent was without prejudice to the then
Respondent contends that the findings of the administrative tribunals pending petition before the Court of Appeals. 50
are supported by substantial evidence; hence, they should be Petitioners argue that the labor tribunals committed grave
accorded great weight and respect by this Court. 45 abuse of discretion in awarding death benefits to Cynthia and her
Respondent denies that her husband failed to comply with the three (3) minor children considering that Bernardine's death was not
three (3)-day reporting requirement and claims that her husband compensable under the POEA-SEC and that respondent failed to
even asked to be provided with medical attention upon his prove her claims of compensability with substantial evidence. 51
repatriation, but his request was denied:
The parties filed their respective memoranda on February 12,
The petitioners merely told him to take a rest 2014 52 and March 24, 2014, 53 in compliance with this Court's
and after that, he will be re-deployed again. December 2, 2013 Resolution. 54
Seaman De Jesus could not have immediately filed a This Court resolves the following issues:
disability claim (as suggested by petitioners)
because he was not yet examined by a doctor due to First, whether or not the payment of money judgment has
the refusal of petitioners to provide post-employment rendered the Petition for Certiorari before the Court of Appeals moot
medical attention. He was also hoping that his and academic; and
condition would improve after taking a rest, as Second, whether or not the award of death benefits was
suggested by petitioners. issued with grave abuse of discretion.
However, his condition did not improve until he The petition is devoid of merit.
suffered aortic aneurism on March 14,
2007. 46 (Emphasis in the original) I
On August 12, 2013, this Court required petitioners to reply to Petitioners cite Leonis Navigation v. Villamater 55 to support
the Comment. 47 their claim that their payment of the judgment award did not render
the Petition for Certiorari before the Court of Appeals moot and
On November 4, 2013, petitioners filed their Reply 48 where academic. Leonis stated: EcTCAD
they deny respondent's allegation that they voluntarily offered to pay
the full judgment award. They claim that they even opposed Simply put, the execution of the final and
respondent's Motion for the Issuance of a Writ of Execution and were executory decision or resolution of the NLRC shall
just forced to pay the judgment award since their petition before the proceed despite the pendency of a petition
Court of Appeals did not stay the judgment award. 49 for certiorari, unless it is restrained by the proper court.
In the present case, petitioners already paid
Petitioners reiterate that the Court of Appeals erred in Villamater's widow, Sonia, the amount of
dismissing the petition on the ground that the payment of the [P]3,649,800.00, representing the total and permanent
judgment award rendered the petition moot and academic because disability award plus attorney's fees, pursuant to the
Writ of Execution issued by the Labor Arbiter. me under the POEA employment
Thereafter, an Order was issued declaring the case as contract and all collective bargaining
"closed and terminated." However, although there was agreements and all labor laws and
no motion for reconsideration of this last Order, Sonia regulations, civil law or any other law
was, nonetheless, estopped from claiming that the whatsoever and all damages, pains
controversy had already reached its end with the and sufferings in connection with my
issuance of the Order closing and terminating the case. claim.
This is because the Acknowledgment Receipt she 6. That I have no further claims
signed when she received petitioners' payment was whatsoever in any theory of law against
without prejudice to the final outcome of the petition the Owners of MV "Tama Star" because
for certiorari pending before the CA. 56
of the payment made to me. That I certify
Respondent, in turn, cites Career Philippines Ship and warrant that I will not file any
Management, Inc. v. Madjus 57 to substantiate her claim that the complaint or prosecute any suit of
Conditional Satisfaction of Judgment Award was akin to an amicable action in the Philippines, Panama,
settlement, rendering the Petition for Certiorari before the Court of Japan or any country against the
Appeals moot and academic. Career Philippines stated: shipowners and/or released
parties herein after receiving the
As for the "Conditional Satisfaction of
payment of US$66,000.00 or its peso
Judgment," the Court holds that it is valid, hence, the
equivalent of PhP2,932,974.00
"conditional" settlement of the judgment award insofar
(emphasis and underscoring supplied)
as it operates as a final satisfaction thereof to render
the case moot and academic. In effect, while petitioner had the luxury of
having other remedies available to it such as its petition
xxx xxx xxx
for certiorari pending before the appellate court, and an
Finally, the Affidavit of Claimant attached to the eventual appeal to this Court, respondent, on the other
"Conditional Satisfaction of Judgment" states: hand, could no longer pursue other claims, including
xxx xxx xxx for interests that may accrue during the pendency of
the case. 58 (Emphasis in the original)
5. That I understand that the payment of
the judgment award of US$66,000.00 or Philippine Transmarine Carriers, Inc. v. Legaspi 59 clarified
its peso equivalent of that this Court ruled against the employer in Career Philippines not
PhP2,932,974.00 includes all my past, because the parties entered into a conditional settlement but
present and future expenses and because the conditional satisfaction of judgment was "highly
claims, and all kinds of benefits due to prejudicial to the employee." 60
The agreement stated that the payment of the compromise agreement to prevent the pending case from becoming
monetary award was without prejudice to the right of moot. 67
the employer to file a petition for certiorari and appeal,
In the Conditional Satisfaction of Judgment
while the employee agreed that she would no longer Award, 68 respondent acknowledged receiving the sum of
file any complaint or prosecute any suit of action P3,370,514.40 from petitioners as conditional payment of the
against the employer after receiving the payment. 61 judgment award. Both parties agreed that the payment of the
Equitable considerations were the underlying basis for the judgment award was without prejudice to the
ruling in Career Philippines 62 and this was accentuated pending certiorari proceedings before the Court of Appeals and was
in Philippine Transmarine Carriers, Inc. v. Pelagio, 63 which only made to prevent the imminent execution being undertaken by
summarized the ruling in Philippine Transmarine Carriers, Inc. v. respondent and the National Labor Relations Commission. Finally,
Legaspi as follows: in the event the judgment award of the labor tribunals is reversed by
Ultimately, in Philippine Transmarine, the Court the Court of Appeals or by this Court, respondent agreed to return
whatever she would have received back to petitioners and in the
ruled that since the agreement in that case was fair to
same vein, if the Court of Appeals or this Court affirms the decisions
the parties in that it provided available remedies to both
parties, the certiorari petition was not rendered moot of the labor tribunals, petitioners shall pay respondent the balance of
the judgment award without need of demand. 69
despite the employer's satisfaction of the judgment
award, as the respondent had obliged himself to return Respondent, for herself and for her three (3) minor children
the payment if the petition would be granted. 64 with Bernardine, then signed a Receipt of Payment 70 where she
reiterated the undertakings she took in the Conditional Satisfaction
In the instant case, the parties entered into a compromise
of Judgement Award.
agreement when they executed a Conditional Satisfaction of
Judgment Award. 65 However, in the Affidavit of Heirship, 71 respondent was
prohibited from seeking further redress against petitioners, making
Article 2028 of the Civil Code defines a compromise
the compromise agreement ultimately prejudicial to
agreement as "a contract whereby the parties, by making reciprocal
respondent: HSAcaE
concessions, avoid a litigation or put an end to one already
commenced." Parties freely enter into a compromise agreement, I, CYNTHIA P. DE JESUS, with residence at
making it a judgment on the merits of the case with the effect 157 Isarog St., La Loma, Quezon City, Philippines,
of res judicata upon them. 66 after being duly sworn, depose and say:
While the general rule is that a valid compromise agreement xxx xxx xxx
has the power to render a pending case moot and academic, being [7.] That I understand that the payment of the
a contract, the parties may opt to modify the legal effects of their judgment award of US$79,200.00 or its peso
equivalent plus of Php3,370,514.40 includes all my
past, present and future expenses and claims, and all As a rule, we only examine questions of law in a
kinds of benefits due to me under the POEA Rule 45 petition. Thus, "we do not re-examine
employment contract and all collective bargaining conflicting evidence, re-evaluate the credibility of
agreements and all labor laws and regulations, civil law witnesses, or substitute the findings of fact of the
or any other law whatsoever and all damages, pains [National Labor Relations Commission], an
and sufferings in connection with my claim; administrative body that has expertise in its specialized
[8.] That I have no further claims whatsoever in field." Similarly, we do not replace our "own judgment
any theory of law against the Owners of for that of the tribunal in determining where the weight
"REGAL PRINCESS" because of the payment made of evidence lies or what evidence is credible." The
to me. That I certify and warrant that I will not file any factual findings of the National Labor Relations
complaint or prosecute any suit or action in the Commission, when confirmed by the Court of Appeals,
Philippines, United States of America, Liberia, Kuwait, are usually "conclusive on this Court." 74
Panama, United Kingdom or any other country against This Court sees no reason to depart from this rule.
the shipowners and/or the released parties herein after
Section 20 (A) of the POEA-SEC requires that for a seafarer
receiving the payment of US$79,200.00 or its peso to be entitled to death benefits, he must have suffered a work-related
equivalent of Php3,370,514.40[.] 72 (Emphasis death during the term of his contract. This provision reads:
supplied)
SECTION 20. COMPENSATION AND
This prohibition on the part of respondent to pursue any of the BENEFITS. —
available legal remedies should the Court of Appeals or this Court
reverse the judgment award of the labor tribunals or prosecute any A. COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS FOR
other suit or action in another country puts the seafarer's DEATH
beneficiaries at a grave disadvantage. Thus, Career Philippines is 1. In case of work-related death of the seafarer,
applicable and the Court of Appeals did not err in treating the during the term of his contract the
conditional settlement as an amicable settlement, effectively employer shall pay his beneficiaries the
rendering the Petition for Certiorari moot and academic. Philippine Currency equivalent to the
II amount of Fifty Thousand US dollars
(US$50,000) and an additional amount of
Despite our previous disquisition, this Court will still take up Seven Thousand US dollars (US$7,000) to
the second issue brought before it for resolution. each child under the age of twenty-one
Madridejos v. NYK-Fil Ship Management, Inc. 73 discussed (21) but not exceeding four (4) children, at
that generally, this Court limits itself to questions of law in a Rule 45 the exchange rate prevailing during the
petition: time of payment.
xxx xxx xxx rate prevailing during the time of
4. The other liabilities of the employer when the payment.
seafarer dies as a result of work-related However, Section 32-A of the POEA-SEC acknowledges the
injury or illness during the term of possibility of "compensation for the death of the seafarer
employment are as follows: occurring after the employment contract on account of a work-
related illness" 75 as long as the following conditions are met:
a. The employer shall pay the deceased's
beneficiary all outstanding (1) The seafarer's work must involve the risks described
obligations due the seafarer under herein;
this Contract. (2) The disease was contracted as a result of the
b. The employer shall transport the seafarer's exposure to the described risks;
remains and personal effects of the (3) The disease was contracted within a period of
seafarer to the Philippines at exposure and under such other factors necessary
employer's expense except if the to contract it;
death occurred in a port where local
government laws or regulations do (4) There was no notorious negligence on the part of the
not permit the transport of such seafarer. 76
remains. In case death occurs at Furthermore, a cardio-vascular disease may be considered
sea, the disposition of the remains occupational under Section 32-A (11) if any of the established
shall be handled or dealt with in conditions are met: AcICHD
accordance with the master's best
judgment. In all cases, the The following diseases are considered as
employer/master shall occupational when contracted under working
communicate with the manning conditions involving the risks described herein:
agency to advise for disposition of xxx xxx xxx
seafarer's remains.
11. Cardio-Vascular Diseases. Any of the
c. The employer shall pay the beneficiaries following conditions must be met:
of the seafarer the
Philippines [sic] currency a. If the heart disease was known to have
equivalent to the amount of One been present during employment,
Thousand US dollars (US$1,000) there must be proof that an acute
for burial expenses at the exchange exacerbation was clearly
precipitated by the unusual strain by compensation and disability benefits. Against the self-
reasons of the nature of his work. serving denials of the respondents, complainant has
shown that her husband, prior to his death, suffered
b. The strain of work that brings about an
chest pains while on board and reported his condition
acute attack must be sufficient
but he was not allowed to seek medical attention.
severity and must be followed within
When he was repatriated, he asked the respondents
24 hours by the clinical signs of a
anew for medical check up but his request was again
cardiac insult to constitute causal
denied. Having substantially established that the
relationship.
causative circumstances leading to her husband's
c. If a person who was apparently death had transpired during his employment. We find
asymptomatic before being that complainant is entitled to the death compensation
subjected to strain at work showed and other benefits under the POEA Standard Contract.
signs and symptoms of cardiac Probability and not the ultimate degree of certainty is
injury during the performance of his the test of proof in compensation proceedings[.] 79
work and such symptoms and signs
While the National Labor Relations Commission opined:
persisted, it is reasonable to claim a
causal relationship. 77 Evidently, the disease which led to the death of
Bernardine de Jesus is work-related, and in this
In fulfilling these requisites, respondent must present no less
regard, We believe that complainant-appellee
than substantial evidence. Substantial evidence is defined as "such
presented sufficient evidence to show the nature of
amount of relevant evidence which a reasonable mind might accept
the maritime employment of her late husband, as well
as adequate to justify a conclusion." 78
as the disease he suffered from and its causal
Both labor tribunals found that Bernardine first experienced relationship to hismaritime employment. 80
chest pains while he was still onboard the cruise ship, i.e., during the
The findings of the labor tribunals correspond with the
term of his employment contract. It was likewise established that
unassailed fact that Bernardine died from a cardio-vascular disease
while Bernardine requested medical attention when he started to feel
merely two (2) months after his repatriation. This Court concurs with
ill and upon his repatriation, his requests were repeatedly ignored.
the Labor Arbiter's observation that it was improbable for Bernardine
The Labor Arbiter held:
to have developed and died from a cardio-vascular disease within
Complainant has clearly established that her the two (2) short months following his repatriation:
husband's condition was suffered while he was on
Seaman de Jesus died just over two (2) months
board the vessel and during the term of his
employment contract with the respondents. Strict rules from his repatriation. It is quite improbable for him to
develop cardio-vascular disease which caused his
of evidence are not applicable in claims for
death during that short span of time. Medical studies
cited on record recognize the fact that it is medically FACTS: Respondents were helpers of Islriz Trading, a gravel and sand
impossible to acquire cardiovascular illnesses merely business owned and operated by petitioner Victor Hugo Lu. Claiming
days or weeks prior to one's death. . . that they were illegally dismissed, respondents filed a Complaint for
It is therefore evident that the illness which illegal dismissal and non-payment of overtime pay, holiday pay, rest day
caused Seaman de Jesus' death occurred during the pay, allowances and separation pay against petitioner before the Labor
term of his employment contract, though it may not Arbiter. On his part, petitioner imputed abandonment of work against
have fully manifested at once. The fact that the respondents. LA Gan rendered decision against petitioner. Petitioner
seaman's work exposed him to different climates and appealed to the NLRC which granted the appeal and ordered
unpredictable weather also helped trigger the onset of respondents’ reinstatement but without backwages. Respondents filed
his disease. There is therefore a reasonable an MR but was denied. Respondents filed with the Labor Arbiter anEx-
connection between the conditions of employment and Parte Motion to Set Case for Conference with Motion, they averred that
work actually performed by the deceased seafarer and
despite the issuance and subsequent finality of the NLRC Resolution
his illness. 81
which likewise ordered respondents’ reinstatement, petitioner still
Being factual in nature, this Court sees no reason to disturb refused to reinstate them. They prayed that in view of the orders of
the findings of the labor tribunals as it has usually given deference to reinstatement, a computation of the award of backwages be made and
the findings of fact of administrative agencies which have acquired that an Alias Writ of Execution for its enforcement be issued. The case
expertise in their specific jurisdiction. Their factual findings are was then set for pre-execution conference. Since the parties failed to
generally binding upon this Court, absent a showing a grave abuse
come to terms of the issue of the monetary award, LA through Fiscal
of discretion. 82
Examiner Trinchera issued an undated computation. LA Castillon then
WHEREFORE, this Court resolves to deny the Petition. The issued a writ of execution to enforce the monetary award in accordance
assailed Court of Appeals Decision dated August 17, 2012 and with the computation. By virtue of such writ, petitioner’s properties were
Resolution dated October 19, 2012 in CA-G.R. SP No. 119393 are levied and set for auction sale where the respondents were the only
hereby AFFIRMED.
bidders. Later, petitioners claimed that they could not take possession
SO ORDERED. TAIaHE of the properties because they were padlocked by the petitioner. They
||| (Magsaysay Maritime Corp. v. De Jesus, G.R. No. 203943, [August asked LA Castillon to issue a break/open order. Petitioner then filed a
30, 2017]) motion to quash the writ of execution, notice of sale/levy. It stated that
NLRC’s decision did not include payment of backwages but only
ART. 229 reinstatement therefore the writ of execution was null and void. CA
36. ISLRIZ TRADING vs CAPADA et. Al dismissed the petition and agreed with LA Castillon’s ratiocination that
the subject of the writ were accrued salaries owing to respondents by
virtue of the reinstatement order of LA as provided in Article 223.
ISSUES: 1. Whether the provision of Article 223 of the Labor Code is and the NLRC Resolution overturning the same because petitioner’s
applicable to this case? failure to reinstate them either actually or through payroll was due to
petitioner’s unjustified refusal to effect reinstatement. 1. A Writ of
2. Whether respondents may collect their wages during the period
Execution was issued by LA Gan on April 22, 2002. However, until the
between the Labor Arbiter’s order of reinstatement pending appeal and
issuance of the September 5, 2002 NLRC Resolution overturning Labor
the NLRC Resolution overturning that of the Labor Arbiter?
Arbiter Gan’s Decision, petitioner still failed to reinstate respondents or
HELD: 1. Yes. The Court held that even if the order of reinstatement of effect payroll reinstatement. This was what actually prompted
the Labor Arbiter is reversed on appeal, it is obligatory on the part of the respondents to file anExParte Motion to Set Case for Conference with
employer to reinstate and pay the wages of the dismissed employee Motionwherein they also prayed for the issuance of a computation of the
during the period of appeal until reversal by the higher court or tribunal. award of backwages and Alias Writ of Execution for its enforcement. It
It likewise settled the view thatthe Labor Arbiter’s order of reinstatement cannot therefore be denied that there was an actual delay in the
is immediately executory and the employer has to either re-admit them execution of the reinstatement aspect of the Decision of Labor Arbiter
to work under the same terms and conditions prevailing prior to their Gan prior to the issuance of the NLRC Resolution overturning the same.
dismissal, or to reinstate them in the payroll, and that failing to exercise 2. After petitioner was served with the Writ of Execution dated April 22,
the options in the alternative, employer must pay the employee’s 2002 he promised that he would first refer the matter to his counsel as
salaries. he could not effectively act on the order of execution without the latter’s
advice. He gave his word that upon conferment with his lawyer; he will
2. Yes. The court went on to declare that after the Labor Arbiter’s inform the Office of the Labor Arbiter of his action on the writ. Petitioner,
decision is reversed by a higher tribunal, the employee may be barred however, without any satisfactory reason, failed to fulfill this promise and
from collecting the accrued wages, if it is shown that the delay in respondents remained to be not reinstated until the NLRC resolved
enforcing the reinstatement pending appeal was without fault on the part petitioner’s appeal.Evidently, the delay in the execution of respondents’
of the employer. It then provided for the twofold test in determining reinstatement was due to petitioner’s unjustified refusal to affect the
whether an employee is barred from recovering his accrued wages, to same.
wit: (1) there must be actual delay or that the order of reinstatement
pending appeal was not executed prior to its reversal; and (2) the delay 37. GARCIA v KJ COMMERCIAL & REYNALDO QUE
must not be due to the employer’s unjustified act or omission. If the delay
FACTS: Respondent owns trucks and engages in the business of
is due to the employer’s unjustified refusal, the employer may still be
distributing cement products. It employed as truck drivers and truck
required to pay the salaries notwithstanding the reversal of the Labor
helpers petitioners. petitioners demanded for a P40 daily salary
Arbiter’s Decision. Applying the two-fold test, Respondents have the
increase. To pressure KJ Commercial to grant their demand, they
right to collect their accrued salaries during the period between the
stopped working and abandoned their trucks at the Northern Cement
Labor Arbiter’s Decision ordering their reinstatement pending appeal
Plant Station in Sison, Pangasinan. They also blocked other workers
from reporting to work. Petitioners then filed with the LA a complaint for February and 25 June 2010 Resolutions and the Court of Appeals’ 29
illegal dismissal, underpayment of salary and non-payment of service April 2011 Decision are void for lack of jurisdiction?
incentive leave and thirteenth month pay. In his 30 October 2008
HELD: NO. Petitioner contends that the labor arbiter’s monetary award
Decision, LA decided in favor of respondents stating that complainants
has already reached finality, since private respondents were not able to
were illegally dismissed from their work and they are entitled to their
file a timely appeal before the NLRC, since they have failed to post the
separation in lieu of reinstatement equivalent to their salary for one (1)
required surety bond. KJ Commercial’s filing of a motion to reduce bond
month for every year of service and backwages from the time that they
and delayed posting of the P2,562,930 surety bond did not render the
were terminated. KJ Commercial appealed to the NLRC. It filed before
Labor Arbiter’s 30 October 2008 Decision final and executory. The Rules
the NLRC a motion to reduce bond and posted a P50,000 cash bond. In
of Procedure of the NLRC allows the filing of a motion to reduce bond
its 9 March 2009 Decision, the NLRC dismissed the appeal for non-
subject to two conditions: (1) there is meritorious ground, and (2) a bond
perfection of the appeal and held that the P50,000.00 cash bond posted
in a reasonable amount is posted. The filing of a motion to reduce bond
by respondents-appellants which represents less than two (2) percent
and compliance with the two conditions stop the running of the period to
of the monetary award is dismally disproportionate to the monetary
perfect an appeal. The NLRC has full discretion to grant or deny the
award of P2,612,930.00 and that the amount of bond posted by
motion to reduce bond, and it may rule on the motion beyond the 10-day
respondents-appellants is not reasonable in relation to the monetary
period within which to perfect an appeal. Obviously, at the time of the
award. A motion to reduce bond that does not satisfy the conditions
filing of the motion to reduce bond and posting of a bond in a reasonable
required under NLRC Rules shall not stop the running of the period to
amount, there is no assurance whether the appellant’s motion is indeed
perfect an appeal. KJ filed a motion for reconsideration and posted a
based on “meritorious ground” and whether the bond he or she posted
P2,562,930 surety bond and . In its 8 February 2010 Resolution, NLRC
is of a “reasonable amount.” Thus, the appellant always runs the risk of
granted the motion stating that there has been an honest effort by the
failing to perfect an appeal. “While the bond requirement on appeals
appellants to comply with putting up the full amount of the required
involving monetary awards has been relaxed in certain cases, this can
appeal bond. Moreover, considering the merit of the appeal, by granting
only be done where there was substantial compliance of the Rules or
the motion for reconsideration, the paramount interest of justice is better
where the appellants, at the very least, exhibited willingness to pay by
served in the resolution of this case. Petitioners filed an MR which was
posting a partial bond.” In the present case, KJ Commercial showed
denied by NLRC on June 25, 2010. They then filed a petition for
willingness to post a partial bond. In fact, it posted a P50,000 cash bond.
certiorari with the CA. CA affirmed the decision of NLRC on 29 April
When the NLRC denied its motion, KJ Commercial filed a motion for
2011.
reconsideration and posted the full P2, 562,930 surety bond. The NLRC
ISSUES: Whether or not LA’s 30 October 2008 Decision became final then granted the motion for reconsideration.
and executory for non perfection of the appeal; thus, the NLRC’s 8
38. ONG vs CA FACTS: Ong, owner of Milestone Metal Mfg. was
charged before the NLRC for illegal dismissal, underpayment of wages
and non-payment of monetary benefits by his employees, herein private prayed for; and a statement of the date when the appellant received the
respondents. Ong allegedly had to adopt a rotation scheme reducing his appealed decision, order or award and proof of service on the other party
employees’ workdays to 3 days a week or less for indefinite period due of such appeal. A mere notice of appeal without complying with the other
to economic crisis affecting his business. The Labor Arbiter ruled in favor requisite aforestated shall not stop the running of the period for
of the respondents awarding P1.1M representing wage differential, perfecting an appeal.” The posting of cash or surety bond is not only
payment of benefits and attorney’s fees and ordered Ong to pay mandatory but jurisdictional as well, and non-compliance therewith is
separation pay equivalent to ½ month salary for every year of service of fatal and has the effect of rendering the judgment final and executory
respondents. Ong filed a notice and memorandum of appeal with the (Phil.Transmarine Carriers, Inc. v. Cortina, G.R. No. 146094, 12
NLRC but instead of posting the required cash or surety bond, he filed November 2003). For petitioner’s failure to post a full or partial appeal
a motion to reduce the appeal bond. The NLRC denied the motion and bond within the prescribed period, his appeal was not perfected and the
the subsequent motion for reconsideration due to Ong’s failure to post NLRC has no authority to entertain the appeal nor reverse the decision
the required cash or surety bond. On appeal for certiorari, the CA of the Labor Arbiter which has become final and executory. The Court
dismissed Ong’s appeal for non-perfection of appeal and his subsequent denied and dismissed the petition for lack of merit, affirming the assailed
appeal for reconsideration was likewise dismissed for lack of merit. decision of the Court of Appeals. No costs.
ISSUES: Whether or not the CA erred in dismissing petitioner’s appeal 39. ROSEWOOD PROCESSING INC. vs NLRC
which was seasonably filed?
FACTS: Six (6) security guards, private respondents herein, filed a
HELD: NO. The right to appeal is not a natural right but a statutory complaint against their employer, Veterans Phil. Scout Security Agency
privilege i.e. it must comply with the requirements of the rule or law. Art. (Veterans for brevity), for illegal dismissal, unpaid wages, underpayment
223 of the Labor Code provides: “Appeal. – Decisions, awards, or orders of wages and nonpayment of other monetary benefits. Petitioner
of the Labor Arbiter are final and executory xxx xxx In case of a judgment Rosewood was impleaded as third-party respondent by Veterans being
involving a monetary award, an appeal by the employer may be an indirect employer of the guards during some points in time. The Labor
perfected only upon the posting of a cash or surety bond xxx xxx in the Arbiter rendered a decision ordering Veterans and Rosewood to pay
amount equivalent to the monetary award in the judgment appealed jointly and severally the complainants a total of P789,154.39 plus
from.” Section 3, Rule VI of the New Rules of Procedure of the NLRC attorney’s fees. Rosewood appealed to the NLRC but was dismissed for
provides: “Requisites for Perfection of Appeal. – (a) The appeal shall be failure to file the required appeal bond within the reglementary period.
filed within the reglementary period as provided in Section 1 of this Rule; Rosewood filed a motion for reconsideration contending that it timely
shall be under oath with proof of payment of the required appeal fee and filed a Notice of Appeal with Memorandum on Appeal, a Motion to
the posting of a cash or surety bond as provided in Section 5 of this Rule; Reduce Appeal Bond and a surety bond of P50,000 issued by Prudential
shall be accompanied by a memorandum of appeal which shall state the Guarantee and Assurance, Inc. The NLRC denied the motion for recon
grounds relied upon and the arguments in support thereof; the relief for lack of merit.
ISSUES: 1). Whether or not petitioner’s appeal to the NLRC was held liable for back wages and separation pay as there is no showing
perfected on time? 2). Whether or not petitioner is solidarily liable with that it committed or conspired in the illegal dismissal of the security
the security agency for payment of salary differentials to the guards. The Court partially granted the petition. The assailed decision
complainants? of the NLRC was modified such that petitioner, with the Security Agency,
is solidarily liable to pay complainant’s wage differentials during the
HELD: 1). YES. While it is indisputable that the appeal to the
period that the complainants were actually under its employ. Petitioner
Commission of the decisions, awards or orders of the Labor Arbiter
was exonerated from payment of back wages and separation pay. The
should be made within ten (10) calendar days from receipt of such
NLRC was required to recompute the wage differentials liability of
decisions, awards, or orders and may be perfected only upon posting of
petitioner within 15 days from finality of its decision. No pronouncement
a cash or surety bond in an amount equivalent to the monetary award in
as to costs.
the judgment appealed from (Art. 223 of the Labor Code), the Court on
some cases (Quiambao vs NLRC, 254 SCRA 211, 216-217, March 4, 40. FILIPINAS SYSTEMS, INC. vs. NLRC
1996; Globe Gen. Services & Security Agency vs NLRC, 249 SCRA 408,
FACTS: A complaint for illegal dismissal and monetary claims were filed
414-415, October 23 1995) had relaxed the appeal bond requirement if
by private respondents against their employer, Filipinas Systems, Inc.
justified by substantial compliance with the rule. The Court noted that
(Filsystems for brevity). Filsystems failed to file its position paper in spite
the NLRC dismissed the appeal due to late filing of the appeal bond
of the order of the Labor Arbiter prompting the Labor Arbiter to decide in
while petitioner filed its memorandum of appeal 10 days after its receipt
favor of respondents in the illegal dismissal complaints and awarded
of the arbiter’s decision together with a motion to reduce the appeal bond
their monetary claims. Filsystems appealed to the NLRC submitting for
accompanied by a P50,000 surety bond. The Court held that with
the first time evidence showing that respondents were project
petitioner’s motion to reduce the bond together with a surety bond, it has
employees whose dismissal was due to the discontinuation of the project
substantially complied with the Labor Code. The Court also finds
they were assigned. Respondents questioned the jurisdiction of the
petitioner’s motion to reduce the appeal bond meritorious while the
NLRC over the appeal as petitioner belatedly file the appeal bond
NLRC acted with grave abuse of discretion in ignoring the merits of
however, the NLRC assumed jurisdiction and remanded the case to the
petitioner’s motions which caused its dismissal. 2). YES. The liability of
Labor Arbiter for further proceedings. Respondents’ motion for
petitioner as an indirect employer was provided under Articles 106, 107
reconsideration was denied so they appeal to the CA via a Petition for
and 109 of the Labor Code. However, petitioner’s liability to the guards
Certiorari. The CA ruled that the NLRC lacks jurisdiction over the appeal
as contractor of the security agency extends only to the period during
for late filing of the appeal bond and reinstated the Labor Arbiter’s
which they are working for the petitioner and ends when the guards were
decision. Peitioner’s motion for reconsideration was denied.
reassigned to another contractor. Further, petitioner’s liability is only
limited to the wage difference if any, between the contract price with the ISSUES: Whether or not the NLRC acquired jurisdiction over
security agency and the statutory minimum wage. Petitioner cannot be petitioner’s appeal?
HELD: NO. Art. 223 of the Labor Code and Section 1 of the NLRC Rules final and executory as neither of the parties appealed. However,
of Procedure provide a ten (10)-day period from receipt of the decision petitioners complained that the decision could not be executed because
of the Arbiter to file an appeal together with an appeal bond if the UNIX allegedly diverted, invested and transferred all its money, assets
decision involves a monetary award. Records showed that petitioners and properties to respondent Fuji Zipper Manufacturing Corporation
received a copy of the Arbiter’s decision on October 31. Their (FUJI) whose stockholders and officers were also those of UNIX. Thus,
memorandum of appeal was dated November 9, but their appeal bond on March 25, 1997, petitioners filed another complaint against
was executed only on November 17; no partial payment of the bond was respondents UNIX, its corporate officers and stockholders of record, and
made within the reglementary period nor did they submit an explanation FUJI. Petitioners mainly prayed that respondents UNIX and FUJI be held
for its late filing. Thereof, the late filing of the bond divested the NLRC jointly and severally held liable for the payment of the monetary awards
of its jurisdiction to entertain petitioner’s appeal. Further, petitioners ordered LA de Vera. A judgment was rendered by LA Pati in favor again
failed to submit their evidence to the Labor Arbiter in spite of the of the petitioners piercing the veil of corporate fiction of the two
opportunities given them and submit the evidence instead to the NLRC respondent sister companies ordering them to pay the 8M plus 3M and
when the decision became adverse to them. The Court dismissed the 1M for moral and exemplary damages. On July 30, 1998, FUJI, its
petition; the decision of the Labor Arbiter was reinstated with the officers and stockholders filed a memorandum on appeal and a motion
modification that if reinstatement of respondents is not feasible, to dispense with the posting of a cash or surety appeal bond on the
petitioner should pay their separation pay in accordance with law. ground that they were not the employers of petitioners before the NLRC.
They alleged that they could not be held responsible for petitioners’
41. Buenaobra, et. al. vs Lim King Guan
claims and to require them to post the bond would be unjust and unfair,
FACTS: Petitioners were employees of private respondent Unix and no sanctioned by law. The 3rd Division of the NLRC denied the
International Export Corporation (UNIX), a corporation engaged in the motion to exempt to post appeal bond and instead ordered them to post
business of manufacturing bags, wallets and the like. Sometime in 1991 the appeal bond of 8M within unextendable period of 10 days upon
and 1992, petitioners filed several cases against UNIX and its receipt. The petitioners argued that timely posting of the appeal bond is
incorporators and officers for unfair labor practice, illegal mandatory for the perfection of the appeal and should be complied with
lockout/dismissal, underpayment of wages, holiday pay, proportionate hence they moved for the reconsideration of the decision rendered by
13th month pay, unpaid wages, interest, moral and exemplary damages the 3rd division of the NLRC. The NLRC dismissed the petitioners’ MR
and attorney’s fees. On February 23, 1993 the Labor Arbiter (LA) de for lack of merit and allowed respondent’s Supplemental Memorandum
Vera decided in favor of the petitioners ordering UNIX to pay the former of Appeal. Hence, petitioners elevated it to the CA imputing grave abuse
the following (more than 8Million): P 5,821,838.40 as backwages; P of discretion to the NLRC, Third Division when it allowed private
1,484,912.00 as separation pay; P 527,748.00 as wage differentials; P respondents to post the mandated cash or surety bond four months after
33,830.00 as regular holiday pay differentials; and P 365,551.95 as the filing of their memorandum on appeal. CA dismissed it.
proportionate 13th month pay for 1990. The decision of the LA became
ISSUES: Whether or not respondents be allowed to appeal and post an Pati’s later decision holding FUJI jointly and severally liable with UNIX
appeal bond even beyond the reglementary period provided in Article in the payment of the monetary awards adjudged by labor arbiter de
223 of the Labor Code. Vera against UNIX. In the absence of any showing that the NLRC
committed grave abuse of discretion, or otherwise acted without or in
HELD: Affirmative. Respondent should be allowed to appeal and post
excess of jurisdiction, this Court is bound by its findings. Furthermore,
appeal bond. The petition has no merit. The provision of Article 223 of
the Court of Appeals upheld the assailed orders of the said Commission.
the Labor Code requiring the posting of bond on appeals involving
monetary awards must be given liberal interpretation in line with the 42. Lepanto vs Belio Icao
desired objective of resolving controversies on the merits. If only to
FACTS: Respondent Icao filed a complaint for illegal dismissal and
achieve substantial justice, strict observance of the reglementary
damages against herein petitioner Lepanto Consolidated Mining
periods may be relaxed if warranted. The NLRC, Third Division could
Company (LCMC) and its CEO Felipe Yap before the Arbitration Branch
not be said to have abused its discretion in requiring the posting of bond
of the NLRC. Icao was a former employee of the company and worked
after it denied private respondents’ motion to be exempted therefrom. It
as the Lead Miner in its underground mine in Paco, Mankayan, Benguet.
is true that the perfection of an appeal in the manner and within the
On February 4, 2008, the company ordered the dismissal from
period prescribed by law is not only mandatory but jurisdictional, and
employment of Icao due to breach of trust and confidence and act of
failure to perfect an appeal has the effect of making the judgment final
highgrading (or act of concealing, possessing or unauthorized extraction
and executory. However, technicality should not be allowed to stand in
of highgrade material/ore without proper authority). This order stemmed
the way of equitably and completely resolving the rights and obligations
from what transpired on January 4, 2008, when Icao allegedly had in his
of the parties. We have allowed appeals from the decisions of the labor
possession a wrapped object containing gold bearing highgrade ores
arbiter to the NLRC, even if filed beyond the reglementary period, in the
found in his skullguard upon being apprehended by the security guards
interest of justice. The facts and circumstances of the instant case
of the company. Icao denied the charge against him and claimed that
warrant liberality considering the amount involved and the fact that
his dismissal from work was without just or authorized cause. The Labor
petitioner already obtained a favorable judgment on February 23, 1993
Arbiter ruled in favor of Icao on September 30, 2008. It found out that
against their employer UNIX. In the same decision which has already
the charge of highgrading was fabricated and there was no just cause
become final and executory, labor arbiter de Vera HELD: This Branch
for the dismissal of respondent. It further concluded that the claim of the
upholds and maintains in the absence of substantial evidence to the
security guards that Icao had inserted ores in his boots while in a
contrary that both respondent corporations have legitimate distinct and
standing position was not in accord with normal human physiological
separate juridical personalities. Thus, respondent Fuji Zipper
functioning and that it was inconsistent with normal human behavior for
Manufacturing, Inc. has been erroneously impleaded in this case. It is
a man, who knew that he was being chased for allegedly placing
only fair and just that respondent FUJI be afforded the opportunity to be
wrapped ore inside his boots, to then transfer the ore to his skullguard,
heard on appeal before the NLRC, especially in the light of labor arbiter
where it could be found once he was apprehended. LCMC was ordered
to pay Icao his full backwages amounting to P345, 879.45. LCMC HELD: Affirmative, We reiterate our pronouncement in Araneta v.
appealed to the NLRC. On February 29, 2009, the NLRC 1st Division Rodas,22where the Court said that when the law does not clearly
ruled for the dismissal on the ground that there was non-perfection of provide a rule or norm for the tribunal to follow in deciding a question
the appeal provided for under Article 223 of the Labor Code and submitted, but leaves to the tribunal the discretion to determine the case
consequently declaring LA’s decision to be final and executory. It noted in one way or another, the judge must decide the question in conformity
that instead of posting an appeal bond required under the Labor Code with justice, reason and equity, in view of the circumstances of the case.
for the perfection of an appeal, LCMC and its CEO filed a Consolidated Applying this doctrine, we rule that petitioner substantially complied with
Motion For Release Of Cash Bond And To Apply Bond Subject For the mandatory requirement of posting an appeal bond for the reasons
Release As Payment For Appeal Bond (Consolidated Motion). They explained below. First, there is no question that the appeal was filed
requested therein that the NLRC release the cash bond of P401,610.84, within the 10-day reglementary period.23Except for the alleged failure
which they had posted in the separate case Dangiw Siggaao v. LCMC, to post an appeal bond, the appeal to the NLRC was therefore in order.
and apply the same cash bond to their present appeal bond liability. Second, it is also undisputed that petitioner has an unencumbered
They reasoned that since this Court had already decided Dangiw amount of money in the form of cash in the custody of the NLRC in the
Siggaao in their favor, and that the ruling therein had become final and separate case Dangiw Siggaao, which was earlier decided in its favor.
executory, the cash bond posted therein could now be released. They Under the Rule VI, Section 6 of the 2005 NLRC Rules, "[a] cash or surety
also cited financial difficulty as a reason for resorting to this course of bond shall be valid and effective from the date of deposit or posting, until
action and prayed that, in the interest of justice, the motion be granted. the case is finally decided, resolved or terminated, or the award
An appeal before the CA was made but to no avail, said court affirmed satisfied." Hence, it is clear that a bond is encumbered and bound to a
the NLRC’s decision of dismissal due to non-perfection of appeal, that case only for as long as 1) the case has not been finally decided,
the posting of the appeal bond is indispensable jurisdictional resolved or terminated; or 2) the award has not been satisfied.
requirement. However, the CA dropped the CEO as a party to this case Therefore, once the appeal is finally decided and no award needs to be
as it found that no specific act was alleged in private respondent’s satisfied, the bond is automatically released. Since the money is now
pleadings to show that he had a hand in Icao’s illegal dismissal; much unencumbered, the employer who posted it should now have
less, that he acted in bad faith. unrestricted access to the cash which he may now use as he pleases –
as appeal bond in another case, for instance. This is what petitioner
ISSUES: Whether or not petitioner complied with the appeal bond
simply did. Third, the cash bond in the amount ofP401,610.84 posted in
requirement under the Labor Code and the NLRC Rules by filing a
Dangiw Siggaao is more than enough to cover the appeal bond in the
Consolidated Motion to release the cash bond it posted in another case,
amount ofP345,879.45 required in the present case. Fourth, this ruling
which had been decided with finality in its favor, with a view to applying
remains faithful to the spirit behind the appeal bond requirement which
the same cash bond to the present case.
is to ensure that workers will receive the money awarded in their favor
when the employer’s appeal eventually fails.There was no showing at
all of any attempt on the part of petitioner to evade the posting of the reinstatement. Meanwhile, the May 31, 2005 decision was appealed by
appeal bond Court found exceptional circumstances that warranted an the respondent to the NLRC but the latter dismissed the same on the
extraordinary exercise of its power to exempt a party from the rules on ground of non-perfection of appeal on Nov. 29, ‘06. And on February 6,
appeal bond, there is all the more reason in the present case to find that 2007, the NLRC issued an Entry of Judgment declaring the Nov 29, ‘06
petitioner substantially complied with the requirement. We emphasize decision final and executory. In this regard, another Writ of Execution
that in this case we are not even exempting petitioner from the rule, as was issued by the LA together with A Notice of Garnishment sent to the
in fact we are enforcing compliance with the posting of an appeal bond. respondents’ depositary bank in the amount of 1.9M. On Dec. 18, ’07
We are simply liberally applying the rules on what constitutes respondents got a partly favorable decision when it elevated the case to
compliance with the requirement, given the special circumstances the CA, ruling that the dismissal of the petitioners was in fact valid. But
surrounding the case as explained above. the petitioners filed with LA an Urgent Ex-Parte Motion for the Immediate
Release of the Garnished amount and LA noted that due to respondents’
43. Bergonio vs SEAIR
refusal to reinstate petitioners despite the final and executory nature of
FACTS: In 2004, petitioners filed before the LA a complaint for illegal the Reinstatement Order on May 31, ’05 - the accrued wages should be
dismissal and illegal suspension with prayer of reinstatement against computed until the the Dec. 18, ’07 CA decision reversing LA’s earlier
respondents. On May 31, 2005, the LA ruled in favor of the petitioners ruling of illegal dismissal, - amounting to P 3, 078, 366.33. The LA
that they were illegally dismissed and suspended and ordered granted the Urgent ExParte Motion and affirmed in toto by the NLRC on
respondent among others, to immediately reinstate the petitioners with July 16, ’08. Again, the respondent assailed the July 16, ’08 NLRC
full backwages. On August 20, 2005, petitioners filed before LA a Motion decision before the CA. The appellate court ruled in favor of respondents
for issuance of Writ of Execution and for their immediate reinstatement. and remanded the case to the Computation and Examination Unit of the
A pre-execution conference was made and respondent manifested their NLRC for proper computation only up to Feb. 24, ’06. Furthermore, CA
intention to reinstate petitioners in the payroll – but it did not materialize agrees that the Reinstatement is immediate in nature and should be
and instead the respondents subsequently filed an Opposition to the executed even pending appeal until the decision is reversed by a higher
Motion for execution on October 3, 2005 arguing its “strained court --- applying this principle, the computation should be up to Dec. 18
relationship” with the petitioners because of threatening text messages. CA decision BUT the CA further pointed out that the petitioners cannot
On October 7, 2005, LA issued a Writ of Execution. However, it was do this computation because the delay of the reinstatement was
returned unsatisfied prompting the petitioners to file for a recomputation WITHOUT the fault of the employer as it was petitioners who did not
of accrued wages that was granted by LA. On February 21, 2006, FOUR show up on Feb. 24 return-to-work order of the respondent, in effect
MONTHS after the Oct. 7, 2005 issuance of the Writ of Execution, barring them to compute backwages up to Dec. 18, ’07. Accordingly, CA
repondents issued a Memorandum directing petitioner to report for work reversed, for grave abuse of discretion, the NLRC July 16, ’08 decision
on February 24, 2006 at Clark-Field, Pampanga but petitioners failed to that affirmed LA’s order to release the garnished amount and
report prompting the respondent to move for the suspension of the recomputation of backwages.
ISSUES: Whether or not the CA correctly found the NLRC in grave accrued wages proceeds from the immediate and self-executory nature
abuse of discretion in affirming the release of the garnished amount of the reinstatement aspect of the LA’s decision. There are only 2
despite the respondents’ issuance of and the petitioners’ failure to exceptions in the above rule: 1) actual delay or the fact that the order of
comply with the February 21, 2006 return-to-work Memorandum. reinstatement pending appeal was not executed prior to its reversal; and
2) the delay must not be due to the employer’s unjustified act or omission
HELD: Negative. Under Article 223 (now 229) paragraph 3 of our Labor
In reversing the CA’s decision for its legal error we apply this exception
Code: Xxxx In any event, the decision of the Labor Arbiter reinstating a
as two-fold test: FIRST, the existence of delay, whether there was actual
dismissed or separated employee, insofar as the reinstatement aspect
delay or whether the order of reinstatement pending appeal was not
is concerned, shall immediately be executory, pending appeal. The
executed prior to its reversal? We answer this test in the affirmative. To
employee shall either be admitted back to work under the same terms
recall, on May 31, 2005, the LA rendered the decision finding the
and conditions prevailing prior to his dismissal or separation or, at the
petitioners illegally dismissed and ordering their immediate
option of the employer, merely reinstated in the payroll. The posting of
reinstatement. Per the records, the respondents received copy of this
a bond by the employer shall not stay the execution for reinstatement
decision on July 8, 2005. From the time the respondents received copy
provided herein. Otherwise stated, a dismissed employee whose case
of the LA’s decision, and the issuance of the writ of execution, until the
was favorably decided by the LA is entitled to receive wages pending
CA reversed this decision on December 17, 2008, the respondents had
appeal upon reinstatement, which reinstatement is immediately
not reinstated the petitioners, either by actual reinstatement or in the
executory. Unless the appellate tribunal issues a restraining order, the
payroll. From these facts and without doubt, there was actual delay in
LA is duty bound to implement the order of reinstatement and the
the execution of the reinstatement aspect of the LA’s May 31, 2005
employer has no option but to comply with it. Moreover, and equally
decision before it was reversed in the CA’s decision. SECOND, the
worth emphasizing, is that an order of reinstatement issued by the LA is
cause of the delay – whether the delay was not due to the employer’s
self- executory, i.e., the dismissed employee need not even apply for
unjustified act or omission. We answer this test in the negative; we find
and the LA need not even issue awrit of execution to trigger the
that the delay in the execution of the reinstatement pending appeal was
employer’s duty to reinstate the dismissed employee. The reversal by a
due to the respondents’ unjustified acts. In reversing, for grave abuse of
higher tribunal of the LA’s finding (of illegal dismissal), notwithstanding,
discretion, the NLRC’s order affirming the release of the garnished
an employer, who, despite the LA’s order of reinstatement, did not
amount, the CA relied on the fact of the issuance of the February 21,
reinstate the employee during the pendency of the appeal up to the
2006 Memorandum and of the petitioners’ failure to comply with its
reversal by a higher tribunal may still be held liable for the accrued
return-to-work directive. In other words, with the issuance of this
wages of the employee, i.e., the unpaid salary accruing up to the time
Memorandum, the CA considered the respondents as having sufficiently
the higher tribunal reverses the decision. The rule, therefore, is that an
complied with their obligation to reinstate the petitioners. And, the
employee may still recover the accrued wages up to and despite the
subsequent delay in or the non-execution of the reinstatement order was
reversal by the higher tribunal. This entitlement of the employee to the
no longer the respondents’ fault, but rather of the petitioners who refused
to report back to work despite the directive. The Court is convinced that not paid minimum wages, overtime, holiday, premium, service incentive
the delay in the reinstatement pending appeal was due to respondents’ leave, and thirteenth month pays. They further averred that the
fault. For one, respondent filed several pleading to suspend the respondents made them sign blank payroll sheets. On June 11, 2001,
execution of reinstatement. These pleadings to our mind show a the petitioners amended their complaint and included illegal dismissal
determined effort on the respondent’s part to prevent or suspend the as their cause of action. They claimed that the respondents relieved
execution of reinstatement pending appeal. Another is that NO actual them from service in retaliation for the filing of their original complaint.
intention to reinstate despite return-to-work directive being issued as it Notably, the respondents did not participate in the proceedings before
was only sent to one paryt (Pelaez) who did not act in representation of the Labor Arbiter except on April 19, 2001 and May 21, 2001 when Mr.
the others hence there was really no sufficient notice. All told, under the Romulo Pacia, Jr. appeared on the respondents’ behalf. The
facts and the surrounding circumstances, the delay was due to the acts respondents’ counsel also appeared in a preliminary mandatory
of the respondents that we find were unjustified. We reiterate and conference on July 5, 2001. LA’s Ruling: The LA awarded the petitioners
emphasize, Article 223, paragraph 3, of the Labor Code mandates the salary differential, service incentive leaves and 13th month pays. In
employer to immediately reinstate the dismissed employee, either by awarding these claims the LA stated that the burden in proving the
actually reinstating him/her under the conditions prevailing prior to the payment of these money claims rests with the employer. However, they
dismissal or, at the option of the employer, in the payroll. The were not awarded backwages, overtime, holiday and premium pays for
respondents' failure in this case to exercise either option rendered them failure to show that they rendered overtime work and worked on
liable for the petitioners' accrued salary until the LA decision was holidays. Moreover, it was not decided that they were illegally dismissed
reversed by the CA on December 17, 2008. We, therefore, find that the for failure to show notice of termination of employment. NLRC: Both
NLRC, in affirming the release of the garnished amount, merely arties appealed to the ruling of the LA. NLRC affirmed LA’s ruling with
implemented the mandate of Article 223; it simply recognized as regard the payment of holiday pay and attorney’s fees but vacated the
immediate and self-executory the reinstatement aspect of the LA's awards of salary differential, 13th month pays and service incentive
decision. leaves. Moreover, NLRC allowed the respondents to present pieces of
evidence for the first time on appeal on the ground that they have been
44: LOON vs POWER MASTER
deprived of due process. It also ruled that petitioners were legally
FACTS: Respondents Power Master, Inc. and Tri-C General Services dismissed due to gross misconduct. CA: Ruling of the NLRC was
employed and assigned the petitioners as janitors and leadsmen in affirmed.
various Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT) offices in
ISSUES: Whether the respondents perfected their appeal before the
Metro Manila area. Subsequently, the petitioners filed a complaint for
NLRC
money claims against Power Master, Inc., Tri-C General Services and
their officers, the spouses Homer and Carina Alumisin (collectively, the HELD: Pursuant to Article 223 of the Labor Code, “an appeal by the
respondents). The petitioners alleged in their complaint that they were employer may be perfected only upon the posting of a cash or surety
bond issued by a reputable bonding company duly accredited by the did not intend to create an employer employee relationship, and the
Commission in the amount equivalent to the monetary award in the execution of the employment contract that was being invoked by
judgment appealed from.” In the present case, the respondents filed a McBurnie was solely for the purpose of allowing McBurnie to obtain an
surety bond issued by Security Pacific Assurance Corporation (Security alien work permit in the Philippines. At the time McBurnie left for
Pacific) on June 28, 2002. At that time, Security Pacific was still an Australia for his medical treatment, he had not yet obtained a work
accredited bonding company. However, the NLRC revoked its permit. LA’s Ruling: The LA declared McBurnie as having been illegally
accreditation on February 16, 2003. Nonetheless, this subsequent dismissed from employment, and thus entitled to receive from the
revocation should not prejudice the respondents who relied on its then respondents the following amounts: (a) US$985,162.00 as salary and
subsisting accreditation in good faith. In Del Rosario v. Philippine benefits for the unexpired term of their employment contract, (b) P2,
Journalists, Inc., we ruled that a bonding company’s revocation of 000,000.00 as moral and exemplary damages, and (c) attorney’s fees
authority is prospective in application. However, the respondents should equivalent to 10% of the total monetary award. The respondents
post a new bond issued by an accredited bonding company in appealed the LA’s Decision to the NLRC. On November 2004, they filed
compliance with paragraph 4, Section 6, Rule 6 of the NLRC Rules of their Memorandum of Appeal and Motion to Reduce Bond, and posted
Procedure. This provision states that “[a] cash or surety bond shall be an appeal bond in the amount of P100,000.00. The respondents
valid and effective from the date of deposit or posting, until the case is contended in their Motion to Reduce Bond, inter alia, that the monetary
finally decided, resolved or terminated or the award satisfied.” awards of the LA were null and excessive, allegedly with the intention of
rendering them incapable of posting the necessary appeal bond. They
45. Mcburnie vs Ganzon
claimed that an award of "more than P60 Million Pesos to a single
FACTS: On October 2002, McBurnie, an Australian national, instituted foreigner who had no work permit and who left the country for good one
a complaint for illegal dismissal and other monetary claims against the month after the purported commencement of his employment" was a
respondents. McBurnie claimed that on May 11, 1999, he signed a five- patent nullity. NLRC: NLRC denied the motion to reduce bond,
year employment agreement with the company EGI as an Executive explaining that "in cases involving monetary award, an employer
Vice-president who shall oversee the management of the company’s seeking to appeal the LA’s decision to the Commission is unconditionally
hotels and resorts within the Philippines. He performed work for the required by Art. 223, Labor Code to post bond in the amount equivalent
company until sometime in November 1999, when he figured in an to the monetary award. CA: Petitioners’ Motion to Reduce Appeal Bond
accident that compelled him to go back to Australia while recuperating was granted. Petitioners were directed to post appeal bond in the
from his injuries. While in Australia, he was informed by respondent amount of P10,000,000.00. The NLRC was also directed to give due
Ganzon that his services were no longer needed because their intended course to petitioners’ appeal which was ordered to be remanded to the
project would no longer push through. The respondents opposed the NLRC for further proceedings. The CA explained that "while Art. 223 of
complaint, contending that their agreement with McBurnie was to jointly the Labor Code requiring bond equivalent to the monetary award is
invest in and establish a company for the management of hotels. They explicit, Section 6, Rule VI of the NLRC Rules of Procedure, as
amended, recognized as exception a motion to reduce bond upon Respondent Ledesma was employed as a House Detective at
meritorious grounds and upon posting of a bond in a reasonable amount Waterfront. The basis of the complaints was filed before Waterfront by
in relation to the monetary award." Moreover, the appellate court ruled Christe Mandal, a supplier of a concessionaire of Waterfront, and
that such bond was unreasonable and excessive. Rosanna Lofranco, who was seeking a job at the same hotel. During the
administrative hearings conducted by Waterfront, it found that Ledesma
ISSUES: Whether or not the appeal bond should be reduced
kissed and mashed the breasts of Christe Mandal inside the hotel’s
HELD: In accordance with the foregoing, although the general rule elevator, and exhibited his penis and asked Rosanna Lofranco to
provides that an appeal in labor cases from a decision involving a masturbate him at the conference room of the hotel. In 2008, Ledesma
monetary award may be perfected only upon the posting of a cash or filed a complaint for illegal dismissal thereafter the LA ruled that the
surety bond, the Court has relaxed this requirement under certain dismissal of ledesma is illegal. On appeal to the NLRC, the latter
exceptional circumstances in order to resolve controversies on their reversed the ruling of the LA and held that Ledesma’s acts of sexual
merits. These circumstances include: (1) the fundamental consideration overtures to Christe Mandal and Rosanna Lofranco constituted grave
of substantial justice; (2) the prevention of miscarriage of justice or of misconduct justifying his dismissal from employment. Ledesma filed
unjust enrichment; and (3) special circumstances of the case combined motion for reconsideration but it was latter denied and the copy of the
with its legal merits, and the amount and the issue involved. The bond said Resolution was received by Atty. Abellana, Ledesma’s counsel,
requirement in appeals involving monetary awards has been and may on March 15, 2010.
be relaxed in meritorious cases, including instances in which (1) there
was substantial compliance with the Rules, (2) surrounding facts and On May 17, 2010,or sixty-three (63) days after Atty. Abellana received
circumstances constitute meritorious grounds to reduce the bond, (3) a a copy of the NLRC’s Resolution he filed before the CA a petition for
liberal interpretation of the requirement of an appeal bond would serve certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. Ledesma contended that
the desired objective of resolving controversies on the merits, or (4) the his receipt on March 24, 2010 (and not the receipt on March 15, 2010
appellants, at the very least, exhibited their willingness and/or good faith by Atty. Abellana), is the reckoning date of the 60-day reglementary
by posting a partial bond during the reglementary period. The Court held period within which to file the petition. Hence, Ledesma claims that the
that the reduction decided upon by the CA was the reasonable amount petition was timely filed on May 17, 2010. Waterfront on the otherhand
to be posted as bond. contend that the petition was belatedly filed. The CA, thereafter,
rendered a Decision, reversing the Decision of the NLRC and reinstating
WATERFRONT CEBU CITY CASINO HOTEL, INC. AND MARCO the ruling of the LA that the dismissal is illegal.
PROTACIO, v. ILDEBRANDO LEDESMA,

Facts: Issue:
whether the petition for certiorari was timely filed with the CA?
In this case, the petition for certiorari was filed with the CA beyond the
60-day period. Atty. Abellana, Ledesma’s counsel, admittedly received
Held: a copy of the NLRC Resolution denying the Motion for Reconsideration
on March 15, 2010 while Ledesma received his copy on March 24,
The Court finds Waterfront’s petition to be meritorious. Under 2010. It must remember that, when a party to a suit appears by counsel,
Section 4, Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, as amended by A.M. No. 07-7- service of every judgment and all orders of the court must be sent to the
12-SC, reads: counsel. This is so because notice to counsel is an effective notice to
the client, while notice to the client and not his counsel is not notice in
SEC. 4. When and where to file the petition. – The petition shall law. Receipt of notice by the counsel of record is the reckoning point of
be filed not later than sixty (60) days from notice of the judgment, order the reglementary period. Notice sent to counsel of record is binding upon
or resolution. In case a motion for reconsideration or new trial is timely the client.
filed, whether such motion is required or not, the petition shall be filed Therefore, with the expiration of the 60-day period to file a petition for
not later than sixty (60) days counted from the notice of the denial of the certiorari, a review of the Resolution of the NLRC will be beyond the
motion. jurisdiction of any court. No longer assailable, the NLRC Resolution
could not be altered or modified. A decision that has acquired finality
Jurisprudence provides, present rule now mandatorily requires becomes immutable and unalterable and may no longer be modified in
compliance with the reglementary period. under the amendment by any respect, even if the modification is meant to correct erroneous
A.M. No. 07-7-12-SC of Section 4, Rule 65 simply meant that there can conclusions of fact or law and whether it will be made by the court that
no longer be any extension of the 60-day period within which to file a rendered it or by the highest court of the land.
petition for certiorari. The rationale for the amendments under A.M. No.
07-7-12-SC is essentially to prevent the use (or abuse) of the petition for ILAW BUKLOD NG MANGGAGAWA (IBM) NESTLE PHILIPPINES,
certiorari under Rule 65 to delay a case or even defeat the ends of INC. CHAPTER (ICE CREAM AND CHILLED PRODUCTS
justice. Deleting the paragraph allowing extensions to file petition on DIVISION), ITS OFFICERS, MEMBERS BONIFACIO T. FLORENDO,
compelling grounds did away with the filing of such motions. As the Rule EMILIANO B. PALANAS AND GENEROSO P. LAXAMANA VS.
now stands, petitions for certiorari must be filed strictly within 60 NESTLE PHILIPPINES, INC., GR NO. 198675,
SEPTEMBER 23, 2015
days from notice of judgment or from the order denying a motion for
reconsideration. In computing a period, the first day shall be excluded,
FACTS: Petitioner union staged a strike against herein respondent
and the last included; hence, the last day to file his petition for certiorari company’s Ice Cream and Chilled Products Division, citing, as grounds,
is on May 14, 2010, a Friday. respondent’s alleged violation of the collective bargaining agreement
(CBA), dismissal of union officers and members, discrimination and
other unfair labor practice (ULP) acts. Respondent, NESTLE filed a
Petition to Declare Strike Illegal. DOLE Acting Secretary certified strike Section 4, (a) and 6, Rule III, of the NLRC Manual on Execution
as illegal. After a series of conciliation meetings and discussions of Judgment:
between parties, they agreed to resolve their differences and came up Section 4. Issuance of Writ.-Execution shall issue upon an
with a compromise agreement embodied in a MOA dated August 4, order, resolution or decision that finally disposes of the actions or
1998 and subsequently approved by NLRC on October 12, 1998. proceedings and after the counsel of record and the parties have
January 25, 2010, after a lapse of more than 11 years from the time of been duly furnished with the copies of the same in accordance
execution of the subject MOA, petitioners filed a Motion of Writ of with the NLRC Rules of Procedure, provided:
Execution contending that they have not been paid the amounts they a) The Commission or Labor Arbiter shall, motu proprio or
are entitled to in accordance with the MOA. Respondents filed its upon motion of any interested party, issued a writ of
opposition contending that the petitioner’s remedy is already barred by execution on a judgment only within 5 years from the
prescription because, under the 2005 Revised Rules of the NLRC, a date it becomes final and executory...
decision or order may be executed on motion within 5 years from the Section 6. Execution by Independent Action. –A judgment after
date it becomes final and executor and that the same decision or order the lapse of 5 years from the date it becomes final and executor
may only be enforced by independent action within a period of 10 years and before it is barred by prescription, may only be enforced by
from the date of its finality. an independent action.
It is clear from the above law and rules that a judgment may be
ISSUE: WON the petitioner’s demand to be paid has prescribed. executed on motion within 5 years from the date of its entry or from the
date it becomes final and executor. After the lapse of time, and before it
RULING: is barred by the statute of limitations, a judgment may be enforced by
A compromise agreement is entered as a determination of a action or by the institution of a complaint in a regular form. In this case,
controversy has the force and effect of a judgment. It is immediately it is clear that the judgment of the NLRC, having been based on a
executor and not appealable, except for vices of consent or forgery. The compromise embodied in a written contract, was immediately executor
non-fulfillment of its terms and conditions justifies the issuance of a writ upon its issuance on October 12, 1998. Thus, it could have been
of execution; in such an instance, execution becomes a ministerial duty executed by motion within 5 years. It was not. Nonetheless, it could have
of the court. been enforced by an independent action within the next 5 years, or
Section 8, Rule XI, 2005 Revised Rules of Procedure of the within 10 years from the time the NLRC Decision was promulgated. It
NLRC which states that: was not. While the Court fully recognizes the special protection which
A decision or order may be executed on motion within 5 the Constitution, labor laws, and social legislation accord the
years from the date it becomes final and executor. After the lapse workingman, the Court cannot, however alter or amend the law on
of such period, the judgment shall become dormant, and may prescription to relieve petitioners of the consequences of their inaction.
only be enforced by an independent action within a period of 10 Laws come to the assistance of the vigilant, not of the sleeping.
years from date of its finality.
MANILA MINING CORPORATION, Respondent appeal and filed Rule 65 petition for certiorari.
vs. Respondents argued that the appeal bond tendered by petitioner was
LOWITO AMOR, ET. AL. so grossly disproportionate to monetary award for the same to be
considered substantial compliance with the requirements for the
perfection of an appeal from a Labor Arbiter’s decision and petitioner’s
Facts: memorandum of appeal was filed 65 days after the lapse of
reglementary period for appeal. The CA grants the respondents’
Respondents Lowito Amor, Ceredon, Cesar, Martinez and Tabili, petition and nullifying the NLRC. Hence, petitioner come to this court.
Jr. were regular employees of petitioner Manila Mining Corporation, a
domestic corporation which operated a mining claim in Placer, Surigao Issue:
del Norte. In compliance with existing environmental laws, petitioner
maintained Tailing Pond No. 7 (TP No. 7), a tailings containment facility Won the petitioner’s appeal filed with the NLRC was fatally
required for the storage of waste materials generated by its mining defective and won it had fully complied with the requirements of the labor
operations. When the mine tailings being pumped into TP No. 7 reached code for perfecting an appeal?
the maximum level in December 2000, petitioner temporarily shut down
its mining operations. Although the DENR-EMB issued a temporary
authority on 25 January 2001 for it to be able to continue operating TP Held:
No. 7 for another six (6) months and to increase its capacity, petitioner
failed to secure an extension permit when said temporary authority As provided in Section 6, Rule VI of the 2011 NLRC Rules of
eventually lapsed. Procedure, the Court hereby RESOLVES that henceforth, the following
guidelines shall be observed:
On 27 July 2001, petitioner served a notice, informing its employees of
the temporary suspension of its operations for six months and the (a) The filing of a motion to reduce appeal bond shall be
temporary lay-off of two-thirds of its employees. After the lapse of said entertained by the NLRC subject to the following conditions: (1)
period, petitioner notified the DOLE on 11 December 2001 that it was there is meritorious ground; and (2) a bond in a reasonable
extending the temporary shutdown of its operations for another six amount is posted;
months. Because of petitioner’s continued failure to resume its
operations, respondents filed the complaint for constructive dismissal. (b) For purposes of compliance with condition no. (2), a motion
shall be accompanied by the posting of a provisional cash or
The LA ruled that petitioner liable for constructive dismissal. Petitioner
surety bond equivalent to ten percent (10), of the monetary award
appealed in NLRC. NLRC reversed the decision of LA. Now,
subject of the appeal, exclusive of damages and attorney's fees;
(c) Compliance with the foregoing conditions shall suffice to rules regarding appeal will render the judgment final and executory.
suspend the running of the 10-day reglementary period to perfect Once a decision attains finality, it becomes the law of the case and can
an appeal from the labor arbiter's decision to the NLRC; no longer be revised, reviewed, changed or altered. Therefore, the
petition is DENIED for lack of merit.
(d) The NLRC retains its authority and duty to resolve the motion
to reduce bond and determine the final amount of bond that shall ANDY D. BALITE, DELFIN M. ANZALDO AND
be posted by the appellant, still in accordance with the standards MONALIZA DL.
of meritorious grounds and reasonable amount; and BIHASA, petitioners, vs. SS VENTURES
INTERNATIONAL, INC., SUNG SIK LEE AND
(e) In the event that the NLRC denies the motion to reduce bond, EVELYN RAYALA, respondents.
or requires a bond that exceeds the amount of the provisional
bond, the appellant shall be given a fresh period of ten (10) days
from notice of the NLRC order within which to perfect the appeal DECISION
by posting the required appeal bond.

PEREZ, J p:

In this case the court denied the claim of petitioner. As the first claim of This is a Petition for Review on Certiorari pursuant to Rule 45 of
petitioner , they wanted for reduction of the appeal bond on the basis of the Revised Rules of Court, assailing the 18 June 2010
serious losses and reverses, this left to nonce. For the second claim of Decision 1 rendered by the Tenth Division of the Court of Appeals in CA-
petitioner that the amount of P100,000.00 which is the provisional bond G.R. SP No. 109589. In its assailed decision, the appellate court
was sufficient to suspend the running of the 10-day reglementary period reversed the Resolution of the National Labor Relations Commission
(NLRC) which denied the Motion to Reduce Appeal Bond filed by
to perfect an appeal from the Labor Arbiter's decision, the court denied
respondents SS Ventures International, Inc., Sung Sik Lee and Evelyn
this argument due to the fact that the check submitted by petitioner was Rayala.
dishonored upon presentment for payment, thereby rendering the tender
thereof ineffectual. In a Resolution 2 dated 30 December 2010, the appellate court
refused to reconsider its earlier decision.
The right to appeal thereto is not a natural right or a part of due process The Facts
but is merely a statutory privilege. Thus, the perfection of an appeal in
Respondent SS Ventures International, Inc. is a domestic
the manner and within the period prescribed by law is not only corporation duly engaged in the business of manufacturing footwear
mandatory but also jurisdictional and failure of a party to conform to the products for local sales and export abroad. It is represented in this action
by respondents Sung Sik Lee and Evelyn Rayala. Petitioners On 30 December 2007, the Labor Arbiter rendered a
Andy Balite (Balite), Monaliza Bihasa (Bihasa) and Delfin Anzaldo Decision 3 in favor of petitioners and held that respondents are liable for
(Anzaldo) were regular employees of the respondent company until their illegal dismissal for failing to comply with the procedural and substantive
employments were severed for violation of various company policies. requirements in terminating employment. The decretal portion of the
Labor Arbiter Decision reads:
For his part, Balite was issued a Show Cause Memorandum by
the respondent company on 4 August 2005 charging him with the WHEREFORE, premises considered,
following infractions: (1) making false reports, malicious and fraudulent [petitioners] are hereby found to have been illegally
statements and rumor-mongering against the company; (2) threatening dismissed even as respondents are held liable therefore.
and intimidating co-workers; (3) refusing to cooperate in the conduct of
Consequently, respondent corporation is hereby
investigation; and (4) gross negligence in the care and use of the
ordered to reinstate [petitioners] to their former positions
company property resulting in the damage of the finished products. After
without loss of seniority rights and other privileges with
respondent found Balite's explanation insufficient, he was dismissed
backwages initially computed at this time and reflected
from employment, through a Notice of Termination on 6 September
below.
2005.
The reinstatement aspect of this decision is
Bihasa, on the other hand, was charged with absence without
immediately executory and thus respondents are hereby
leave on two occasions and with improper behavior, stubbornness,
required to submit a report of compliance therewith
arrogance and uncooperative attitude towards superiors and
within ten (10) days from receipt thereof.
employees. Bihasa was likewise terminated from the service on 5 May
2006 after her explanation in an administrative investigation was found Respondent corporation is likewise ordered to
unsatisfactory by the respondent company. pay [petitioners] their 13th month pay and 10% attorney's
fees.
Anzaldo was also dismissed from employment after purportedly
giving him due process. The records of the infractions he committed as Backwages 13th month pay Attorney's fees
well as the date of his termination, however, are not borne by the
records.
1. Andy Balite P162,969.04 P17,511.00 P18,048.00
Consequently, the three employees charged respondents with 2. Delfin Anzaldo 158,299.44 17,511.00 17,511.00
illegal dismissal and recovery of backwages, 13th month pay and 3. Monaliza Bihasa 116,506.62 17,511.00 13,401.75
attorney's fees before the Labor Arbiter. All other claims are dismissed for lack of factual
In refuting the allegations of the petitioners, respondents averred or legal basis. 4 CIAcSa
that petitioners were separated from employment for just causes and Aggrieved, respondents interposed an appeal by filing a Notice
after affording them procedural due process of law. of Appeal and paying the corresponding appeal fee. However, instead
of filing the required appeal bond equivalent to the total amount of the In a Resolution 9 dated 30 December 2010, the Court of Appeals
monetary award which is P490,308.00, respondents filed a Motion to refused to reconsider its earlier decision.
Reduce the Appeal Bond to P100,000.00 and appended therein a
Petitioners are now before this Court via this instant Petition for
manager's check bearing the said amount. Respondents cited financial
Review on Certiorari 10 praying that the Court of Appeals Decision and
difficulty as justification for their inability to post the appeal bond in full
Resolution be reversed and set aside on the ground that:
owing to the partial shutdown of respondent company's operations.
WITH DUE RESPECT, THE HONORABLE COURT OF
In a Resolution 5 dated 27 November 2008, the NLRC dismissed
APPEALS COMMITTED A GRAVE ABUSE OF
the appeal filed by the respondents for non-perfection. The NLRC ruled
DISCRETION AMOUNTING TO LACK OR IN EXCESS
that posting of an appeal bond equivalent to the monetary award is
OF JURISDICTION WHEN IT REVERSED THE
indispensable for the perfection of the appeal and the reduction of the
RESOLUTION OF THE NLRC DISMISSING
appeal bond, absent any showing of meritorious ground to justify the
RESPONDENTS' APPEAL FOR NON-PERFECTION
same, is not warranted in the instant case.
THEREOF. 11
Similarly ill-fated was respondents' Motion for Reconsideration
The Court's Ruling
which was denied by the NLRC in a Resolution 6 dated 30 April 2009.
Petitioners, in assailing the appellate court's decision, argue that
On certiorari, the Court of Appeals reversed the NLRC Decision posting of an appeal bond in full is not only mandatory but a jurisdictional
and allowed the relaxation of the rule on posting of the appeal bond. requirement that must be complied with in order to confer jurisdiction
According to the appellate court, there was substantial compliance with upon the NLRC. They posit that the posting of an insufficient amount of
the rules for the perfection of an appeal because respondents appeal bond, as in this case, resulted to the non-perfection of the appeal
seasonably filed their Memorandum of Appeal and posted an appeal rendering the decision of the Labor Arbiter final and executory.
bond in the amount of P100,000.00. While the amount of the appeal
bond posted was not equivalent to the monetary award, the Court of Banking on the appellate court's decision, respondents, for their
Appeals ruled that respondents were able to sufficiently prove their part, urge the Court to relax the rules on appeal underscoring on the so-
incapability to post the required amount of bond. 7 The Court of Appeals called "utmost good faith" they demonstrated in filing a Motion to Reduce
disposed in this wise: Appeal Bond and in posting a cash bond in the amount of P100,000.00.
In justifying their inability to post the required appeal bond, respondents
WHEREFORE, premises considered, finding reasoned that respondent company is in dire financial condition due to
grave abuse of discretion on the part of the [NLRC], the lack of orders from customers constraining it to temporarily shut down
instant petition is GRANTED. The [NLRC's] Resolutions its operations resulting in significant loss of revenues. Respondents now
dated November 27, 2008 and April 30, 2009, plea for the liberal interpretation of the rules so that the case can be
respectively, are hereby SET ASIDE. [The NLRC] is threshed out on the merits, and not on technicality.
hereby directed to decide petitioners' appeal on the
merits. 8
Time and again we reiterate the established rule that in the Commission in the amount equivalent to the monetary
exercise of the Supreme Court's power of review, the Court is not a trier award in the judgment appealed from. (Emphases ours).
of facts 12 and does not routinely undertake the re-examination of the
Implementing the aforestated provisions of the Labor Code are
evidence presented by the contending parties during the trial of the case
the provisions of Rule VI of the 2011 Rules of Procedure of the NLRC on
considering that the findings of facts of labor officials who are deemed
perfection of appeals which read:
to have acquired expertise in matters within their respective jurisdiction
are generally accorded not only respect, but even finality, and are Section 1. Periods of Appeal. — Decisions,
binding upon this Court, when supported by substantial evidence. 13 awards or orders of the Labor Arbiter shall be final and
executory unless appealed to the Commission by any or
The NLRC ruled that no appeal had been perfected on time
both parties within ten (10) calendar days from receipt
because of respondents' failure to post the required amount of appeal
thereof. . . . If the 10th day or the 5th day, as the case
bond. As a result of which, the decision of the Labor Arbiter has attained
may be, falls on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday, the last
finality. The Court of Appeals, on the contrary, allowed the relaxation of
day to perfect the appeal shall be the first working day
the rules and held that respondents were justified in failing to pay the
following such Saturday, Sunday or holiday.
required appeal bond. Despite the non-posting of the appeal bond in full,
however, the appellate court deemed that respondents were able to xxx xxx xxx
seasonably perfect their appeal before the NLRC, thereby directing the
NLRC to resolve the case on the merits. ICAcHE Section 4. Requisites for Perfection of Appeal. —
(a) The appeal shall be:
The pertinent rule on the matter is Article 223 of the Labor Code,
as amended, which sets forth the rules on appeal from the Labor (1) filed within the reglementary period as
Arbiter's monetary award: provided in Section 1 of this Rule;

ART. 223. Appeal. — Decisions, awards, or (2) verified by the appellant himself/herself in
orders of the Labor Arbiter are final and executory unless accordance with Section 4, Rule 7 of
appealed to the Commission by any or both parties the Rules of Court, as amended;
within ten (10) calendar days from receipt of such (3) in the form a of a memorandum of appeal
decisions, awards, or orders. . . . . which shall state the grounds relied upon
xxx xxx xxx and the arguments in support thereof; the
relief prayed for; and with a statement of
In case of a judgment involving a monetary award, the date when the appellant received the
an appeal by the employer may be perfected only upon appealed decision, award or order;
the posting of a cash or surety bond issued by a
reputable bonding company duly accredited by the (4) in three (3) legibly typewritten or printed
copies; and
(5) accompanied by: These statutory and regulatory provisions explicitly provide that
an appeal from the Labor Arbiter to the NLRC must be perfected within
i) proof of payment of the required appeal
ten calendar days from receipt of such decisions, awards or orders
fee and legal research fee;
of the Labor Arbiter. In a judgment involving a monetary award, the
ii) posting of cash or surety bond as appeal shall be perfected only upon (1) proof of payment of the required
provided in Section 6 of this Rule; appeal fee; (2) posting of a cash or surety bond issued by a
and reputable bonding company; and (3) filing of a memorandum of
appeal. 14
iii) proof of service upon the other parties.
In McBurnie v. Ganzon, 15 we harmonized the provision on
xxx xxx xxx appeal that its procedures are fairly applied to both the petitioner and
(b) A mere notice of appeal without complying the respondent, assuring by such application that neither one or the
with the other requisites aforestated shall not stop the other party is unfairly favored. We pronounced that the posting of a cash
running of the period for perfecting an appeal. or surety bond in an amount equivalent to 10% of the monetary award
pending resolution of the motion to reduce appeal bond shall be deemed
xxx xxx xxx sufficient to perfect an appeal, to wit: DEICaA
Section 5. Appeal Fee. — The appellant shall pay It is in this light that the Court finds it necessary to
the prevailing appeal fee and legal research fee to the set a parameter for the litigants' and the NLRC's
Regional Arbitration Branch or Regional Office of origin, guidance on the amount of bond that shall hereafter be
and the official receipt of such payment shall form part of filed with a motion for a bond's reduction. To ensure that
the records of the case. the provisions of Section 6, Rule VI of the NLRC Rules of
Section 6. Bond. — In case the decision of the Procedure that give parties the chance to seek a
Labor Arbiter, or the Regional Director involves a reduction of the appeal bond are effectively carried out,
monetary award, an appeal by the employer shall be without however defeating the benefits of the bond
perfected only upon the posting of a bond, which requirement in favor of a winning litigant, all motions to
shall either be in the form of cash deposit or surety bond reduce bond that are to be filed with the NLRC shall be
equivalent in amount to the monetary award, exclusive accompanied by the posting of a cash or surety bond
of damages and attorney's fees. equivalent to 10% of the monetary award that is subject
of the appeal, which shall provisionally be deemed the
xxx xxx xxx reasonable amount of the bond in the meantime that an
The Commission through the Chairman may on appellant's motion is pending resolution by the
justifiable grounds blacklist a bonding company, Commission. In conformity with the NLRC Rules, the
notwithstanding its accreditation by the Supreme Court. monetary award, for the purpose of computing the
necessary appeal bond, shall exclude damages and By reducing the amount of the appeal bond in this
attorney's fees. Only after the posting of a bond in the case, the employees would still be assured of at least
required percentage shall an appellant's period to perfect substantial compensation, in case a judgment award is
an appeal under the NLRC Rules be deemed affirmed. On the other hand, management will not be
suspended. effectively denied of its statutory privilege of appeal.
The rule We set in McBurnie was clarified by the Court in Sara In line with Sara Lee and the objective that the appeal on the
Lee Philippines v. Ermilinda Macatlang. 16 Considering the peculiar merits to be threshed out soonest by the NLRC, the Court holds that the
circumstances in Sara Lee, We determined what is the reasonable appeal bond posted by the respondent in the amount of P100,000.00
amount of appeal bond. We underscored the fact that the amount of 10% which is equivalent to around 20% of the total amount of monetary bond
of the award is not a permissible bond but is only such amount that shall is sufficient to perfect an appeal. With the employer's demonstrated
be deemed reasonable in the meantime that the appellant's motion is good faith in filing the motion to reduce the bond on demonstrable
pending resolution by the Commission. The actual reasonable amount grounds coupled with the posting of the appeal bond in the requested
yet to be determined is necessarily a bigger amount. In an effort to strike amount, as well as the filing of the memorandum of appeal, the right of
a balance between the constitutional obligation of the state to afford the employer to appeal must be upheld. This is in recognition of the
protection to labor on the one hand, and the opportunity afforded to the importance of the remedy of appeal, which is an essential part of our
employer to appeal on the other, We considered the appeal bond in the judicial system and the need to ensure that every party litigant is given
amount of P725M which is equivalent to 25% of the monetary award the amplest opportunity for the proper and just disposition of his cause
sufficient to perfect the appeal, viz.: freed from the constraints of technicalities. 17
We sustain the Court of Appeals in so far as it WHEREFORE, premises considered, the petition is DENIED.
increases the amount of the required appeal bond. But The assailed Decision and Resolution of the Court of Appeals are
we deem it reasonable to reduce the amount of the hereby AFFIRMED.
appeal bond to P725 Million. This directive already
SO ORDERED.
considers that the award if not illegal, is extraordinarily
huge and that no insurance company would be willing to ||| (Balite v. SS Ventures International, Inc., G.R. No. 195109, [February
issue a bond for such big money. The amount of P725 4, 2015])
Million is approximately 25% of the basis above
calculated. It is a balancing of the constitutional TURKS SHAWARMA v. PAJARON
obligation of the state to afford protection to labor which,
specific to this case, is assurance that in case of
Turks Shawarma Company/Gem Zenarosa Vs. Feliciano Z. Pajaron and
affirmance of the award, recovery is not negated; and on
the other end of the spectrum, the opportunity of the Larry A. Carbonilla
employer to appeal. G.R. No. 207156.
January 16, 2017 Whether or not the CA erred in affirming the NLRC's decision in
dismissing petitioners’ appeal for non-perfection

FACTS:
HELD:
Petitioners hired Feliciano Z. Pajaron (Pajaron) in May 2007 as service
crew and Larey A. Carbonilla (Carbonilla) in April 2007 as head crew. No. The CA did not err in affirming the NLRC's decision in dismissing
Both Pajaron and Carbonilla claimed that there was no just or authorized petitioners’ appeal for non-perfection.
cause for their dismissal and petitioners also failed to comply with the
The Court has time and again held that "[t]he right to appeal is neither a
requirements of due process. On April 15, 2010, they filed their
natural right nor is it a component of due process. It is a mere statutory
respective Complaints for constructive and actual illegal dismissal, non-
privilege, and may be exercised only in the manner and in accordance
payment of overtime pay, holiday pay, holiday premium, rest day
with the provisions of the law. The party who seeks to avail of the same
premium, service incentive leave pay and 13th month pay against
must comply with the requirements of the rules. Failing to do so, the right
petitioners. Both Complaints were consolidated.
to appeal is lost."
Petitioners denied having dismissed Pajaron and Carbonilla; they
It is clear from both the Labor Code (Article 223) and the NLRC Rules
averred that they actually abandoned their work. They likewise failed to
of Procedure (Sections 4 and 6 of Rule VI) that there is legislative and
substantiate their claims that they were not paid labor standards
administrative intent to strictly apply the appeal bond requirement, and
benefits.
the Court should give utmost regard to this intention."21
The Labor Arbiter found credible Pajaron and Carbonilla's version and
The posting of cash or surety bond is therefore mandatory and
held them constructively and illegally dismissed. Then, petitioners
jurisdictional; failure to comply with this requirement renders the
appealed before the NLRC. However, Zefiarosa failed to post in full the
decision of the Labor Arbiter final and executory.22 This indispensable
required appeal bond. Thus, petitioners' appeal was dismissed by the
requisite for the perfection of an appeal ''is to assure the workers that if
NLRC for non-perfection. They filed a motion for reconsideration but the
they finally prevail in the case[,] the monetary award will be given to them
same was denied.
upon the dismissal of the employer's appeal [and] is further meant to
Petitioners filed a Petition for Certiorari with the CA. However, the CA discourage employers from using the appeal to delay or evade payment
rendered a Decision dismissing the Petition for Certiorari. It held that the of their obligations to the employees.
NLRC did not commit any grave abuse of discretion in dismissing
Stated otherwise, petitioners' case will still fail on its merits even if we
petitioners' appeal for non-perfection. Hence, this present petition.
are to allow their appeal to be given due course. After scrupulously
ISSUE: examining the contracting positions and arguments of the parties, we
find that the Labor Arbiter's decision declaring Pajaron and Carbonilla 3853 and that her dismissal was not justified, the Labor Arbiter held
illegally dismissed was supported by substantial evidence. All told, we petitioners guilty of illegal dismissal. Petitioners were accordingly
find no error on the part of the CA in ruling that the NLRC did not gravely ordered to reinstate de Jesus to her previous position without loss of
abused its discretion in dismissing petitioners' appeal for no perfection seniority rights and with full back wages from the time of her suspension
due to noncompliance with the requisites of filing a motion to reduce on August 19, 1992 • Petitioners appealed to the public respondent
bond. National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) NLRC: In its July 21,
1994 decision, the NLRC ruled that de Jesus was negligent in presuming
46. PIONEER TEXTURIZING CORP vs. NLRC
that the ribs of P.O. No. 3853 should likewise be trimmed for having the
FACTS: • Private respondent Lourdes A. de Jesus is petitioners’ same style and design as P.O. No. 3824, thus petitioners cannot be
reviser/trimmer since 1980. As reviser/trimmer, de Jesus based her entirely faulted for dismissing de Jesus. The NLRC declared that the
assigned work on a paper note, identified by its P.O. Number. On August status quo between them should be maintained and affirmed the Labor
15, 1992, de Jesus worked on P.O. No. 3853 by trimming the cloths’ Arbiter's order of reinstatement, but without back wages. The NLRC
ribs. She thereafter submitted tickets corresponding to the work done to further "directed petitioner to pay de Jesus her back salaries from the
her supervisor. Three days later, de Jesus received from petitioners’ date she filed her motion for execution on September 21, 1993 up to the
personnel manager a memorandum requiring her to explain why no date of the promulgation of the decision. • Petitioners insist that the
disciplinary action should be taken against her for dishonesty and NLRC gravely abused its discretion in holding that de Jesus is entitled
tampering of official records and documents with the intention of to reinstatement to her previous position for she was not illegally
cheating as P.O. No. 3853 allegedly required no trimming. The dismissed in the first place. Petitioners further add that de Jesus
memorandum also placed her under preventive suspension for thirty breached the trust reposed in her, hence her dismissal from service is
days starting from August 19, 1992. In her handwritten explanation, de proper on the basis of loss of confidence, citing as authority the cases
Jesus maintained that she merely committed a mistake in trimming P.O. of Ocean Terminal Services, Inc. v. NLRC, 197 SCRA 491; CocaCola
No. 3853 as it has the same style and design as P.O. No. 3824 which Bottlers Phil., Inc. v. NLRC, 172 SCRA 751, and Piedad v. Lanao del
has an attached price list for trimming the ribs and admitted that she may Norte Electric Cooperative,154 SCRA 500. • Petitioners' also argued the
have been negligent in presuming that the same work was to be done theory that an order for reinstatement is not self-executory. They stress
with P.O. No. 3853, but not for dishonesty or tampering Petitioners’ that there must be a writ of execution which may be issued by the NLRC
personnel department, nonetheless, she was terminated. • On or by the Labor Arbiter motu proprio or on motion of an interested party.
September 22, 1992, de Jesus filed a complaint for illegal dismissal They further maintain that even if a writ of execution was issued, a timely
against petitioners with the Labor Arbiter. Labor Arbiter: The Labor appeal coupled by the posting of appropriate supersedes as bond, which
Arbiter who heard the case noted that de Jesus was amply accorded they did in this case, effectively forestalled and stayed execution of the
procedural due process in her termination from service. Nevertheless, reinstatement order of the Labor Arbiter. • Private respondent de Jesus,
after observing that de Jesus made some further trimming on P.O. No. for her part, maintains that petitioners should have reinstated her
immediately after the decision of the Labor Arbiter ordering her employment, the same, however, cannot be used as a pretext to
reinstatement was promulgated since the law mandates that an order vindicate each and every instance of unwarranted dismissal. To be a
for reinstatement is immediately executory. An appeal, she says, could valid ground, it must shown that the employee concerned is responsible
not stay the execution of a reinstatement order for she could either be for the misconduct or infraction and that the nature of his participation
admitted back to work or merely reinstated in the payroll without need of therein rendered him absolutely unworthy of the trust and confidence
a writ of execution. De Jesus argues that a writ of execution is necessary demanded by his position. In this case, petitioners were unsuccessful in
only for the enforcement of decisions, orders, or awards which have establishing their accusations of dishonesty and tampering of records
acquired finality. with intention of cheating. Indeed, even if petitioners’ allegations against
de Jesus were true, they just the same failed to prove that her position
Issues: (1) Whether or not de Jesus was illegally dismissed. (2) Whether
needs the continued and unceasing trust of her employee’s functions.
or not an order for reinstatement needs a writ of execution.
Surely, de Jesus who occupies the position of a reviser/trimmer does
HELD: (1) Yes, de Jesus was illegally dismissed. Based on the Labor not require the petitioners’ perpetual and full confidence. In this regard,
Arbiter's observations or from the NLRC's assessment, it distinctly petitioners’ reliance on the cases of Ocean Terminal Services, Inc. v.
appears that petitioners' accusation of dishonesty and tampering of NLRC; Coca-Cola Bottlers Phil., Inc. v. NLRC; and Piedad v. Lanao del
official records and documents with intention of cheating against de Norte Electric Cooperative, which when perused involve positions that
Jesus was not substantiated by clear and convincing evidence. require the employers’ full trust and confidence, is wholly misplaced.
Petitioners simply failed, both before the Labor Arbiter and the NLRC, to Undoubtedly, the position of a reviser/trimmer could not be equated with
discharge the burden of proof and to validly justify de Jesus' dismissal that of a canvasser, sales agent, or a bill collector. Besides, the involved
from service. The law, in this light, directs the employers, such as herein employees in the three aforementioned cases were clearly proven guilty
petitioners, not to terminate the services of an employee except for a of infractions unlike private respondent in the case at bar. Thus,
just or authorized cause under the Labor Code. Lack of a just cause in petitioners dependence on these cited cases is inaccurate, to say the
the dismissal from service of an employee, as in this case, renders the least. More, whether or not de Jesus meets the day’s quota of work she,
dismissal illegal, despite the employer's observance of procedural due just the same, is paid the daily minimum wage (2) No, writ of execution
process.And while the NLRC stated that "there was no illegal dismissal is not necessary for order of reinstatement. Under Article 223 of the
to speak of in the case at bar" and that petitioners cannot be entirely Labor Code, as amended, an employer has two options in order for him
faulted therefor, said statements are inordinate pronouncements which to comply with an order of reinstatement, which is immediately
did not remove the assailed dismissal from the realm of illegality. Neither executory, even pending appeal. Firstly, he can admit the dismissed
can these pronouncements preclude us from holding otherwise. Equally employee back to work under the same terms and conditions prevailing
unmeritorious is petitioners’ assertion that the dismissal is justified on prior to his dismissal or separation or to a substantially equivalent
the basis of loss of confidence. While loss of confidence, as correctly position if the former position is already filled up. Secondly, he can
argued by petitioners, is one of the valid grounds for termination of reinstate the employee merely in the payroll. Failing to exercise any of
the above options, the employer can be compelled under pain of construction should be adopted which will most tend to give effect to the
contempt, to pay instead the salary of the employee. This interpretation manifest intent of the law maker and promote the object for which the
is more in consonance with the constitutional protection to labor (Section statute was enacted, and a construction should be rejected which would
3, Art. XIII, 1987 Constitution). The right of a person to his labor is tend to render abortive other provisions of the statute and to defeat the
deemed to be property within the meaning of the constitutional guaranty object which the legislator sought to attain by its enactment.
that no one shall be deprived of life, liberty, and property without due
47: ALEJANDRO ROQUERO vs. PHILIPPINE AIRLINES, INC
process of law. Therefore, he should be protected against any arbitrary
and unjust deprivation of his job (Bondoc vs. People’s Bank and Trust FACTS: Alejandro Roquero, along with Rene Pabayo, were ground
Co., Inc., 103 SCRA 599 [1981]). The employee should not be left equipment mechanics of respondent Philippine Airlines, Inc. (PAL for
without any remedy in case the employer unreasonably delays brevity). From the evidence on record, it appears that Roquero and
reinstatement. Article 224 states that the need for a writ of execution Pabayo were caught red-handed possessing and using shabu in a raid
applies only within five (5) years from the date a decision, an order or conducted by PAL security officers and NARCOM personnel. The two
awards becomes final and executory. It cannot relate to an award or alleged that they did not voluntarily indulge in the said act but were
order of reinstatement still to be appealed or pending appeal which instigated by a certain Jojie Alipato who was introduced to them by
Article 223 contemplates. The provision of Article 223 is clear that an Joseph Ocul, Manager of the Airport Maintenance Division of PAL.
award for reinstatement shall be immediately executory even pending When they started the procedure of taking the drugs, armed men
appeal and the posting of a bond by the employer shall not stay the entered the room, arrested Roquero and Pabayo and seized the drugs
execution for reinstatement. The legislative content is quite obvious, to and the paraphernalia used. They assailed their arrest and asserted that
make an award of reinstatement immediately enforceable, even pending they were instigated by PAL to take the drugs. They argued that Alipato
appeal. To require the application for and issuance of a writ of execution was not really a trainee of PAL but was placed in the premises to
as prerequisites for the execution of a reinstatement award would instigate the commission of the crime. They based their argument on the
certainly betray and run counter to the very object and intent of Article fact that Alipato was not arrested. Moreover, Alipato has no record of
223, the immediate execution of a reinstatement order. The reason is employment with PAL. In a Memorandum dated July 14, 1994, Roquero
simple. An application for a writ of execution and its issuance could be and Pabayo were dismissed by PAL. Thus, they filed a case for illegal
delayed for numerous reasons. A mere continuance or postponement of dismissal. Labor Arbiter: Dismissal of Roquero and Pabayo was upheld.
a scheduled hearing, for instance, or an inaction on the part of the Labor Both parties are found at fault, PAL for applying means to entice the
Arbiter or the NLRC could easily delay the issuance of the writ thereby complainants into committing the infraction and the complainants for
setting at naught the strict mandate and noble purpose envisioned by giving in to the temptation and eventually indulging in the prohibited
Article 223. Statutes, as a rule, are to be construed in the light of the activity. Nonetheless, the Labor Arbiter awarded separation pay and
purpose to be achieved and the evil sought to be remedied and where attorney’s fees to the complainants. While the case was on appeal with
statues are fairly susceptible of two or more construction, that the NLRC the complainants were acquitted by the Regional Trial Court
(RTC) Branch 114, Pasay City, in the criminal case which charged them the position involves the safety of human lives. Even if he was instigated
with “conspiracy for possession and use of a regulated drug in violation to take drugs he has no right to be reinstated to his position. He took the
of Section 16, Article III of Republic Act 6425,” on the ground of drugs fully knowing that he was on duty and more so that it is prohibited
instigation. NLRC: The NLRC found PAL guilty of instigation and ordered by company rules. Roquero is guilty of serious misconduct for
reinstatement to their former positions but without backwages. possessing and using shabu. For serious misconduct to warrant the
Complainants did not appeal from the decision but filed a motion for a dismissal of an employee, it (1) must be serious; (2) must relate to the
writ of execution of the order of reinstatement. The Labor Arbiter granted performance of the employee’s duty; and (3) must show that the
the motion but PAL refused to execute the said order on the ground that employee has become unit to continue working for the employer. It is of
they have filed a Petition for Review before this Court. PAL’s petition public knowledge that drugs can damage the mental faculties of the
was referred to the Court of Appeals. During the pendency of the case user. Roquero was tasked with the repair and maintenance of PAL’s
with the Court of Appeals, PAL and Pabayo filed a Motion to airplanes. He cannot discharge that duty if he is a drug user. His failure
Withdraw/Dismiss the case with respect to Pabayo, after they voluntarily to do his job can mean great loss of lives and properties. There was
entered into a compromise agreement. The motion was granted in a procedural due process. PAL complied with the twin-notice requirement
Resolution promulgated by the Former Thirteenth Division of the Court before dismissing the petitioner. The twin-notice rule requires (1) the
of Appeals on January 29, 2002. Court of Appeals: Reversed the notice which apprises the employee of the particular acts or omissions
decision of the NLRC and reinstated the decision of the Labor Arbiter for which his dismissal is being sought along with the opportunity for the
insofar as it upheld the dismissal of Roquero. However, it denied the employee to air his side, and (2) the subsequent notice of the employer’s
award of separation pay and attorney’s fees to Roquero on the ground decision to dismiss him. (2) The order of reinstatement is immediately
that one who has been validly dismissed is not entitled to those benefits. executory. The unjustified refusal of the employer to reinstate a
dismissed employee entitles him to payment of his salaries effective
ISSUES: (1) Whether or not the instigated employee shall be solely
from the time the employer failed to reinstate him despite the issuance
responsible for an action arising from the instigation perpetrated by the
of a writ of execution. Unless there is a restraining order issued, it is
employer. (2) whether or not the executory nature of the decision, more
ministerial upon the Labor Arbiter to implement the order of
so the reinstatement aspect of a labor tribunal’s order be halted by a
reinstatement. In the case at bar, no restraining order was granted.
petition having been filed in higher courts without any restraining order
Thus, it was mandatory on PAL to actually reinstate Roquero or reinstate
or preliminary injunction. (3) Whether or not the employer who refused
him in the payroll. (3)Having failed to do so, PAL must pay Roquero the
to reinstate the employee despite a writ duly issued be held to pay the
salary he is entitled to, as if he was reinstated, from the time of the
salary of the subject employee from the time he was ordered reinstated
decision of the NLRC until the finality of the decision of this Court.
up to the time of the reversal of the decision.
Technicalities have no room in labor cases where the Rules of Court are
HELD: (1) Instigation is only a defense against criminal liability. It cannot applied only in a suppletory manner and only to effectuate the objectives
be used as a shield against dismissal from employment especially when of the Labor Code and not to defeat them. Hence, even if the order of
reinstatement of the Labor Arbiter is reversed on appeal, it is obligatory Motion for Execution of the order of reinstatement. Meanwhile, APC filed
on the part of the employer to reinstate and pay the wages of the with the NLRC an appeal assailing the finding of the Labor Arbiter that it
dismissed employee during the period of appeal until reversal by the was liable for constructive dismissal. NLRC: The NLRC granted the
higher court. On the other hand, if the employee has been reinstated appeal in a Resolution dated and held that no dismissal, constructive or
during the appeal period and such reinstatement order is reversed with otherwise, took place for it was Zamora himself who voluntarily
finality, the employee is not required to reimburse whatever salary he terminated his employment by not reporting for work and by joining a
received for he is entitled to such, more so if he actually rendered competitor Grand Air. However, upon Motion for Reconsideration filed
services during the period. by Zamora, the NLRC, in a Resolution dated December 17, 1999,
modified its earlier Resolution. Court of Appeals: APC hereafter filed a
48: Air Philippines Corporation vs. Enrico Zamora
Petition for Certiorari with the Court of Appeals to have the December
FACTS: Enrico Zamora (Zamora) was employed with Air Philippines 17, 1999 Resolution of the NLRC partially annulled and its October 11,
Corporation (APC) as Flight Deck Crew when applied for promotion to 2000 Resolution set aside on the ground that these were issued with
the position of airplane captain and underwent the requisite training grave abuse of discretion. Court of Appeals dismissed the petition for
program. After completing training, he inquired about his promotion but failure of petitioner to attach copies of all pleadings (such complaint,
APC did not act on it. APC continued to give him assignments as flight answer, position paper) and other material portions of the record as
deck crew. Thus, Zamora filed a Complaint with the Labor Arbiter. He would support the allegations therein. APC filed a Motion for
argued that the act of APC of withholding his promotion rendered his Reconsideration and attached the documents required by the Court but
continued employment with it oppressive and unjust. He therefore asked it was denied.
that APC be held liable for constructive dismissal. APC denied that it
ISSUES: (1) Whether or not the dismissal issued by the Court of Appeals
dismissed complainant. It pointed out that, when the complaint was filed
was valid on the ground that petitioner failed to attach required
on May 14, 1997, complainant was still employed with it. It was only on
documents. (2) Whether or not the employer is obligated to reinstate and
May 22, 1997 that complainant stopped reporting for work, not because
pay the wages of the dismissed employee during the period of appeal.
he was forced to resign, but because he had joined a rival airline,
GrandAir. Labor Arbiter: Declared APC liable for constructive dismissal HELD: (1) It is readily apparent in this case that the Court of Appeals
and ordered the reinstate complainant to his position as B-737 Captain was overzealous in its enforcement of the rules. The pleadings and other
without loss of seniority right immediately upon receipt thereof, Pay documents it required of petitioner were not at all relevant to the petition.
complainant his full backwages from May 15, 1997 up to the It is noted that the only issue raised by petitioner was whether the NLRC
promulgation of this decision, TWO MILLION PESOS (P2, 000,000.00) committed grave abuse of discretion in granting respondent unpaid
in the concept of moral damages, ONE MILLION PESOS salaries while declaring him guilty of abandonment of employment.
(P1,000,000.00) as exemplary damages and attorney’s fees equivalent Certainly, copies of the Resolutions of the NLRC dated February 10,
to TEN PERCENT (10%) of the total award. Zamora immediately filed a 1999, December 17, 1999 and October 11, 2000 would have sufficed as
basis for the Court of Appeals to resolve this issue. After all, it is in these employee since that saving act is designed to stop, although temporarily
Resolutions that the NLRC purportedly made contrary findings. In sum, since the appeal may be decided in favor of the appellant, a continuing
we annul and set aside the January 11, 2000 and May 23, 2001 threat or danger to the survival or even the life of the dismissed or
Resolutions of the Court of Appeals. (2) Rather than remand it to the separated employee and his family.
Court of Appeals for resolution, the main issue was resolved in an
49: LANSANGAN vs. AMKOR TECHNOLOGY
expedite matters. The Supreme Court ruled that NLRC did not commit
grave abuse of discretion in holding petitioner liable to respondent for FACTS: An anonymous e-mail was sent to the General Manager of
P198, 502.30. The premise of the award of unpaid salary to respondent Amkor Technology Philippines (respondent) detailing allegations of
is that prior to the reversal by the NLRC of the decision of the Labor malfeasance on the part of its supervisory employees Lunesa
Arbiter, the order of reinstatement embodied therein was already the Lansangan and Rosita Cendaña (petitioners) for "stealing company
subject of an alias writ of execution even pending appeal. Although time." Respondent thus investigated the matter, requiring petitioners to
petitioner did not comply with this writ of execution, its intransigence submit their written explanation. In handwritten letters, petitioners
made it liable nonetheless to the salaries of respondent pending appeal. admitted their wrongdoing. Respondent thereupon terminated
There is logic in this reasoning of the NLRC. In Roquero v. Philippine petitioners for "extremely serious offenses" as defined in its Code of
Airlines, Inc. it was that technicalities have no room in labor cases where Discipline, prompting petitioners to file a complaint for illegal dismissal
the Rules of Court are applied only in a suppletory manner and only to against it. LA: Labor Arbiter Amansec, dismissed petitioners’ complaint,
effectuate the objectives of the Labor Code and not to defeat he having found them guilty of "Swiping another employees’ I.D. card or
them.Hence, even if the order of reinstatement of the Labor Arbiter is requesting another employee to swipe one’s I.D. card to gain personal
reversed on appeal, it is obligatory on the part of the employer to advantage and/or in the interest of cheating", an offense of dishonesty
reinstate and pay the wages of the dismissed employee during the punishable as a serious form of misconduct and fraud or breach of trust
period of appeal until reversal by the higher court. On the other hand, if under Article 282 of the Labor Code. The Arbiter, however, ordered the
the employee has been reinstated during the appeal period and such reinstatement of petitioners to their former positions without backwages
reinstatement order is reversed with finality, the employee is not required "as a measure of equitable and compassionate relief" owing mainly to
to reimburse whatever salary he received for he is entitled to such, more petitioners’ prior unblemished employment records, show of remorse,
so if he actually rendered services during the period. There is a policy harshness of the penalty and defective attendance monitoring system of
elevated in this ruling. In Aris (Phil.) Inc. v. National Labor Relations respondent. NLRC: The LA’s decision was modified and the portion
Commission, it was held that with respect to decisions reinstating regarding the reinstatement of the petitioners was deleted. CA: The CA
employees, the law itself has determined a sufficiently overwhelming affirmed the finding that petitioners were guilty of misconduct and the
reason for its execution pending appeal. It is pursuant to the same power like, and further ordered respondent to "pay petitioners their
(police power), the State may authorize an immediate implementation, corresponding backwages without qualification and deduction for the
pending appeal, of a decision reinstating a dismissed or separated period covering October 20, 2004 (date of the Arbiter’s decision) up to
June 30, 2005 (date of the NLRC Decision)," citing Article 223 of the and illegal dismissal with damages LA: that the dismissal was without
Labor Code and Roquero v. Philippine Airlines. just cause and in violation of her right to due process, and the bank is
ordered to reinstate complainant immediately and pay other benefits,
ISSUES: Whether or not petitioners are entitled to receive backwages
with back wages. Both parties appealed to the NLRC. NLRC: reversed
pursuant to Article 223
the Labor Arbiter's decision and declared that the dismissal of the
HELD: Roquero, as well as Article 22318 of the Labor Code on which complainant valid and legal but ORDERING bank to pay the salaries due
the appellate court also relied, finds no application in the present case. to the complainant from the date it reinstated complainant in the payroll.
Article 223 concerns itself with an interim relief, granted to a dismissed The parties filed a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals. CA
or separated employee while the case for illegal dismissal is pending only modified the amount of indemnity (P5000). Citibank contends that
appeal, as what happened in Roquero. It does not apply where there is the Labor Arbiter’s decision in upholding the right of Genuino to
no finding of illegal dismissal, as in the present case. reinstatement is not supported by evidence thus there can be no right to
payroll reinstatement.
50. Genuino v NLRC FACTS: Citibank is an American banking
corporation duly licensed to do business in the Philippines. Genuino was ISSUES: WON bank shall pay the salaries due the complainant from the
employed by Citibank as Treasury Sales Division Head with the rank of date or reinstatement up to the date of final decision.
Assistant Vice-president. On August 23, 1993, Citibank sent Genuino a
HELD: The court held that the dismissal was for just cause but lacked
letter charging her with "knowledge and/or involvement" in transactions
due process due to failure of the bank to meet the requirement of twin
"which were irregular or even fraudulent and was informed she was
notices. The first notice informing the employee of the charges should
under preventive suspension. She was further directed to explain in
neither be pro forma nor vague. It should set out clearly what the
writing why she should not be terminated. Petitioner’s counsel replied
employee is being held liable for. Since the notice of charges given to
and demanded a bill of particular regarding the charges against her. The
Genuino is inadequate for not specifying the specific acts and
bank claimed that the petitioner and Mr. Dante Santos, using the
surrounding circumstances of the transactions, the dismissal could not
facilities of their family corporations (Torrance and Global) appear to
be in accordance with due process. However the Court nevertheless
have participated in the diversion of bank clients' funds from Citibank to
fined Genuino's dismissal justified. Loss of confidence is a valid ground
other companies and that they made money in the process. Genuino did
for dismissing an employee. It is sufficient if there is some basis for such
not appear in the administrative investigation and thereafter Citibank
loss of confidence. In this case, Genuino was tasked to solicit
informed Genuino of the result of their investigation and was further
investments and keep them in Citibank. Curiously, Genuino did not even
informed that her employment was terminated by Citibank on grounds
dissuade the depositors from withdrawing their monies from Citibank.
of (1) serious misconduct, (2) willful breach of the trust reposed upon
The Court was thus compelled to conclude that Genuino did not have
her by the bank, and (3) commission of a crime against the bank.
her employer's interest. Furthermore, Court cancels the directive of
Genuino filed before the Labor Arbiter a Complaint for illegal suspension
NLRC directing the bank to pay salaries due to the complainant from the
date it reinstated complainant in the payroll up to and until the date of CARPIO, J p:
this decision, view of the Court’s finding that the dismissal is valid. In any
event, the decision of the Labor Arbiter reinstating a dismissed or The Case
separated employee, insofar as the reinstatement aspect is concerned, This is a petition 1 for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of
shall immediately be executory, even pending appeal. If the decision of the Rules of Court. Petitioners Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart),
the labor arbiter is later reversed on appeal upon the finding that the Napoleon L. Nazareno and Ricardo P. Isla (Isla) challenge the Court of
ground for dismissal is valid, then the employer has the right to require Appeals' 3 July 2012 Amended Decision 2 and 23 November 2012
the dismissed employee on payroll reinstatement to refund the salaries Resolution 3 in CA-G.R. SP No. 115794, affirming the National Labor
s/he received while the case was pending appeal, or it can be deducted Relations Commission's (NLRC) 30 July 2010 Resolution. 4 CTEacH
from the accrued benefits that the dismissed employee was entitled to The Facts
receive from his/her employer under existing laws, collective bargaining On 26 April 2004, Smart hired respondent Jose Leni
agreement provisions, and company practices. However, if the Z. Solidum (Solidum) as Department Head for Smart Buddy Activation.
employee was reinstated to work during the pendency of the appeal, Smart Buddy Activation is under the Product Marketing Group which is
then the employee is entitled to the compensation received for actual headed by Isla. On 21 September 2005, Isla gave Solidum a
services rendered without need of refund. memorandum 5 informing him of alleged acts of dishonesty, directing
him to explain why his employment should not be terminated, and
GARCIA V. PAL- PAGE 73 placing him under preventive suspension without pay for 30 days. On 28
MT. CARMEL V. RESUANA September 2005, Solidum submitted his written explanation 6 in
response to the 21 September 2005 notice.
BUENVIAJE V. CA
On 22 October 2005, Isla gave Solidum a memorandum 7 dated
PFIZER INC. V. VELASCO 21 October 2005 informing him of a modified set of alleged acts of
dishonesty, directing him to explain why his employment should not be
WHENPHIL CORP. V. ABING- PAGE 79 terminated, extending his preventive suspension by 10 days, and
inviting him to the administrative investigation scheduled on 26 October
SMART COMMUNICATIONS, INC., NAPOLEON L. 2005.
NAZARENO, and RICARDO P. ISLA, * petitioners, vs.
On 11 November 2005, Isla gave Solidum a
JOSE LENI Z. SOLIDUM, respondent.
memorandum 8 dated 9 November 2005 terminating his employment
"for fraud or willful breach of trust, falsification, misrepresentation,
conflict of interest, serious misconduct and dishonesty-related
DECISION offenses." 9
Solidum filed against Smart a complaint 10 for illegal dismissal, complainant on payroll reinstatement, with
illegal suspension, non-payment of salaries, actual, moral and payment of accrued salaries, allowances,
exemplary damages, and attorney's fees. benefits/incentives and bonuses;
In his 3 July 2006 Decision, 11 the Labor Arbiter found 4. Ordering respondents to jointly and severally pay
that Solidum's preventive suspension and dismissal were illegal and that complainant his full backwages, inclusive of all
he was entitled to full back wages, moral and exemplary damages, and benefits bonuses, privileges, incentives,
attorney's fees. The dispositive portion of the Decision stated: allowances or their money equivalents, from date
of dismissal on November 11, 2005 until actual
WHEREFORE, premises all considered,
reinstatement, partially computed as follows:
judgment is hereby rendered in favor of complainant and
against respondents, as follows: a. Backwages and benefits — P2,903,561.79
1. Declaring the 20-day extended preventive suspension b. Quarterly performance bonus — P935,640.00
of complainant from October 22, 2005 to
c. Monthly Gas allowance — P90,693.00
November 10, 2005 illegal and tantamount to
constructive dismissal, and ordering respondents d. Monthly Rice allowance — P9,000.00
to jointly and severally pay complainant his
corresponding salaries, benefits, privileges, e. Monthly driver's allowance — P68,175.00
allowances and other incentives/bonuses during f. 13th month pay (pro-rata) — P265,569.68
the period from October 22 to November 10,
2005, in the amount of P236,061.94; HTDcCE g. Unpaid accumulated leaves 2004 & 2005 —
P472,123.87
2. Ordering respondents to jointly and severally pay the
complainant's unpaid salaries, benefits, h. Smart incentive entitlement —
privileges, allowances, and other P7,370,250.00[;]
benefits/bonuses during the 30-day preventive 5. Ordering respondents to jointly and severally pay
suspension, in the amount of P365,896.00; complainant for the foregone opportunity of
3. Declaring the dismissal of complainant effective pursuing studies in the United Kingdom under the
November 11, 2005 as illegal, and ordering British Chevening Scholarship Award, in the sum
respondents to reinstate the complainant to his of 20,189.00 British pounds or Peso
former position, immediately upon receipt of this 1,982,727.37[; and] DIETHS
decision, either physically or in the payroll, at the 6. Ordering respondents to jointly and severally pay
option of the former, and failure to exercise their complainant moral damages in the amount of P2
option within ten (10) days hereof, shall place the
million, exemplary damages in the amount of P2 incentives and bonuses from 21 January to 20 April 2009. The Labor
million, and attorney's fees equivalent to 10% of Arbiter held that:
the judgment award.
In the instant case, the NLRC promulgated its
SO ORDERED. 12 Decision dated January 26, 2009 reversing this Office's
Decision dated July 03, 2006. Also, the NLRC in its
On 25 July 2006, Smart appealed to the NLRC. On 13 November
Decision dated May 29, 2009 denied the complainant's
2006, the Labor Arbiter issued a writ of execution ordering the sheriff to
motion for reconsideration of its Decision dated January
collect from petitioners P1,440,667.93, representing Solidum's accrued
26, 2009. This Office is mindful of the fact that the NLRC
salaries, allowances, benefits, incentives and bonuses from 21 July to
is tasked with the review of decisions promulgated by
20 October 2006. On 15 August and 25 October 2007, 11 February, 28
this Office, as such, it is a higher tribunal as
April, 23 July and 11 November 2008, and 22 January 2009, the Labor
contemplated by law.
Arbiter issued seven other alias writs of execution ordering the sheriff to
collect from petitioners Solidum's accrued salaries, allowances, Verily, the recent decision of the NLRC reversing
benefits, incentives and bonuses. the Decision of this Office prevents any future issuance
of any writ of execution on the reinstatement aspect in
In its 26 January 2009 Resolution, 13 the NLRC reversed the
line with Gracia, et al. vs. Philippine Airlines,
Labor Arbiter's 3 July 2006 Decision and dismissed for lack of
Inc. and International Container Terminal Services vs.
merit Solidum's complaint. Solidum filed a motion 14 for reconsideration
NLRC. 18
dated 9 February 2009.
Solidum appealed to the NLRC.
On 4 May 2009, Solidum filed with the Labor Arbiter an ex-parte
motion 15 praying that an alias writ of execution be issued directing the The NLRC's Ruling
sheriff to collect from petitioners P1,440,667.93, representing Solidum's In its 31 May 2010 Decision, 19 the NLRC reversed the Labor
accrued salaries, allowances, benefits, incentives and bonuses from 21 Arbiter's 29 July 2009 Order. The NLRC held that:
January to 20 April 2009. cITAaD
In the case at bar, records show that respondents
In its 29 May 2009 Decision, 16 the NLRC denied for lack of appealed from the Labor Arbiter's Decision to the
merit Solidum's 9 February 2009 motion for reconsideration. Commission on July 25, 2006. The Commission resolved
The Labor Arbiter's Ruling respondents' appeal on January 26, 2009, reversing the
Decision of the Labor Arbiter dated July 3, 2006. Notably,
In his 29 July 2009 Order, 17 the Labor Arbiter denied for lack of
there is no showing in the records that respondents
merit Solidum's ex-parte motion praying that an alias writ of execution
reinstated complainant to his former position. Hence,
be issued directing the sheriff to collect from petitioners P1,440,667.93,
pursuant to Article 223 of the Labor Code, as amended,
representing Solidum's accrued salaries, allowances, benefits,
relative to the reinstatement aspect of the Labor Arbiter's
Decision, respondents are obligated to pay Solidum filed a motion 21 for partial reconsideration. Petitioners
complainant's salaries and benefits, computed from July filed a motion 22 for reconsideration. In its 30 July 2010 Resolution, the
13, 2006, when respondents received a copy of the NLRC granted Solidum's motion for partial reconsideration and denied
Labor Arbiter's Decision which, among others, ordered for lack of merit petitioners' motion for reconsideration. The NLRC held
the reinstatement of complainant, up to the date of that:
finality of the Commission's resolution reversing the
Our Entry of Judgment dated June 01, 2010
Labor Arbiter's Decision, which, for this purpose, is
clearly states that the Decision promulgated by this
reckoned on May 29, 2009, when the Commission
Commission on May 29, 2009 had become final and
denied complainant's Motion for Reconsideration.
executory on August 10, 2009. Thus, We so hold that the
Indeed, common sense dictates that date of finality of Our Decision reversing the Labor
complainant's entitlement to reinstatement Arbiter's Decision dated July 3, 2006 is August 10, 2009,
salaries/wages and benefits, emanating from the Labor and the computation of complainant's reinstatement or
Arbiter's order of reinstatement, presupposes that said accrued salaries/wages and other benefits should be up
order of reinstatement is still enforceable. Here, the to August 10, 2009.
Labor Arbiter's order of reinstatement dated July 3, 2006
Anent respondents' Motion for Reconsideration, We
was no longer enforceable as of May 29, 2009 when the
find the same unmeritorious. 23
Commission's resolution reversing the Labor Arbiter's
order of reinstatement is deemed to have become final Petitioners appealed to the Court of Appeals.
as hereinabove discussed. Patently then, complainant is
no longer entitled to reinstatement salaries/wages and In his alias writ 24 of execution dated 22 October 2010, the Labor
benefits after May 29, 2009. Arbiter ordered the sheriff to collect from petitioners P1,440,667.93,
representing Solidum's accrued salaries, allowances, benefits,
Significantly, the Order of the Labor Arbiter being incentives and bonuses from 21 January to 20 April 2009.
appealed from by complainant, denied the latter's motion
for issuance of alias writ of execution for the collection of The Court of Appeals' Ruling
his reinstatement salaries and benefits for the period In its 25 January 2011 Decision, 25 the Court of Appeals granted
covering January 21, 2009 to April 20, 2009. The Labor petitioners' petition for certiorari, prohibition and mandamus with prayer
Arbiter thus committed serious error in denying for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction and/or temporary
complainant's motion with respect to his reinstatement restraining order and set aside the NLRC's 31 May 2010 Decision and
salaries and benefits as he is entitled to the same for the 30 July 2010 Resolution. The Court of Appeals held that: EHScCA
period starting July 13, 2006 to May 29,
The order of the Labor Arbiter denying Private
2009. 20 ADTCaI
Respondent's ex-parte motion for issuance of Alias Writ
of Execution is not a final order as there was something
else to be done, namely, the resolution of his Complaint Respondent's Ex-parte motion shall also have an effect
for Illegal Dismissal against Petitioners on the merits. of reviewing a final judgment which the law and the court
The subject Order of the Labor Arbiter did not put an end abhor. It bears to stress that when a final judgment
to the issues of illegal suspension and illegal dismissal, becomes executory, it thereby becomes immutable and
and, thus, partakes the nature of an interlocutory order. unalterable. 26
It is jurisprudential that an interlocutory order is not
Solidum filed a motion 27 for reconsideration.
appealable until after the rendition of the judgment on the
merits for a contrary rule would delay the administration In his alias writ 28 of execution dated 18 May 2011, the Labor
of justice and unduly burden the courts. Being Arbiter ordered the sheriff to collect from petitioners P1,440,667.93,
interlocutory in nature, the subject Order could not have representing Solidum's accrued salaries, allowances, benefits,
been validly appealed. incentives and bonuses from 21 April to 20 July 2009. Petitioners filed
with the Court of Appeals a motion 29 to order Solidum to return
Moreover, as correctly argued by the Petitioners,
P2,881,335.86, representing the total amount under the 22 October
an appeal from an interlocutory order is a prohibited
2010 and 18 May 2011 alias writs of execution.
pleading under Section 4 of the 2005 Revised Rules of
Procedure of the NLRC. Consequently, the Labor In its 3 July 2012 Amended Decision, the Court of Appeals partly
Arbiter's order being interlocutory and unappealable, granted Solidum's motion for reconsideration and denied petitioners'
Public Respondent NLRC has no jurisdiction to rule on motion to order the return of P2,881,335.86. The Court of Appeals held
the appeal except to dismiss the same. The assailed that:
Decision and the Resolution, rendered in excess of the
Public Respondent NLRC's jurisdiction, are therefore [T]here was a wrong appreciation of fact relative
null. to the date of finality of judgment. The true date when the
May 29, 2009 NLRC decision became final and
Besides and more importantly, records show that executory was on August 10, 2009 and not on June 1,
the Decision, dated May 29, 2009, of the NLRC in the 2010. (Rollo, page 1895) Conformably with the
Illegal Dismissal Case which effectively denied Private foregoing, the involved portion of our ruling which is the
Respondent's Complaint for Illegal Dismissal against subject of the discussion at hand is hereby modified by
Petitioners already attained finality on June 1, 2010. changing the stated date therein from June 1, 2010 to
Indeed, an Entry of Judgment was accordingly made. August 10, 2009. HCDAcE
Clearly, Private Respondent can neither pray nor cause
this Court to grant his Ex-parte Motion for Issuance of xxx xxx xxx
Writ of Execution to reinstate him since his dismissal by On the last issue for consideration — refund of
Petitioners was finally ruled to be legal; hence, the denial monetary award, We find necessary to quote the
of his complaint for lack of merit. Ruling on Private following pronouncement of the High Court:
xxx xxx xxx Alias Writ of Execution. The wages, allowances,
incentives/benefits and bonuses received through the
The Court reaffirms the prevailing principle
said writs covered the period from January 21, 2009 to
that even if the order of reinstatement of the Labor
July 20, 2009, thus, the latter is not required to reimburse
Arbiter is reversed on appeal, it is obligatory on
the same due to the fact that one is entitled to such
the part of the employer to reinstate and pay the
amounts until the day that the reinstatement order was
wages of the dismissed employee during the
reversed with finality (which in this case falls on August
period of appeal until reversal by the higher court.
10, 2009). (See Juanito A. Garcia vs. Philippine Airlines,
(Juanito A. Garcia vs. Philippine Airlines, Inc.,
Inc. G.R. No. 164856, January 20, 2009) 32
G.R. No. 164856, January 20, 2009)
Hence, the present petition.
In view thereof, no refund will thus be
permitted by this Court. 30 The Issues
Petitioners filed a motion 31 for partial reconsideration with Petitioners raised as issues that the Court of Appeals erred in
motion to order the return of P2,881,335.86. In its 23 November 2012 ruling that (1) the NLRC's 29 May 2009 Decision became final and
Resolution, the Court of Appeals held that: executory on 10 August 2009, and (2)Solidum was entitled to
P2,881,335.86, representing the total amount under the 22 October
The move to reconsider the January 26, 2009 decision 2010 and 18 May 2011 alias writs of execution.
of the NLRC was denied on May 29, 2009. Thereafter,
an Entry of Judgment was issued which provides in The Court's Ruling
particular the following: "this is to certify that on May The petition is unmeritorious.
29, 2009, a DECISION was rendered . . . and that the
same has, pursuant to Rules of the Commission, The NLRC's 29 May 2009 Decision became final and executory
became [sic] final and executory on Aug. 10, 2009". on 10 August 2009 as shown on the entry of judgment. 33 The entry of
(Rollo, p. 1895) It appears therefore that the situation judgment states:
contemplated in the last paragraph of the Section 14 This is to certify that on May 29, 2009, a DECISION
had been the case here. In view of this, We find no was rendered in the above-entitled case, the dispositive
cogent reason to reverse our earlier ruling that August portion of which reads as follows: acTDCI
10, 2009 is the true date of finality of subject decision.
"WHEREFORE, premises considered,
xxx xxx xxx complainant's motion for reconsideration, as well
In the light, however, of our earlier discussion on as respondents' motion for injunction are hereby
the true date of finality of judgment, we cannot order the both DENIED for lack of merit. Accordingly, Our
return of the amounts released by way of the 8th and 9th
January 26, 2009 Resolution is hereby Since the NLRC's 29 May 2009 Decision became final and
REITERATED. executory on 10 August 2009, Solidum is entitled to P2,881,335.86,
representing his accrued salaries, allowances, benefits, incentives and
SO ORDERED."
bonuses for the period 21 January to 20 July 2009.
and that the same has pursuant to the Rules of the
In Bago v. NLRC, 37 the Court held that employees are entitled
Commission, become final and executory on Aug.
to their accrued salaries, allowances, benefits, incentives and bonuses
10, 2009 and is hereby recorded in the Book of Entries
until the NLRC's reversal of the labor arbiter's order of reinstatement
of Judgments.
becomes final and executory, as shown on the entry of judgment. The
Quezon City, Philippines, June 01, 2010. 34 (Boldfacing Court held that: CDAcIT
supplied)
Finally, on Arlyn's claim that respondents
Moreover, the certification 35 issued by the NLRC states that the "unilaterally withheld her payroll reinstatement" after the
NLRC's 29 May 2009 Decision became final and executory on 10 NLRC reversed on September 27, 2004 the Labor
August 2009: Arbiter's decision, Article 223, paragraph 6 of the Labor
Code provides that the decision of the NLRC on appeals
This is to certify that the Decision in NLRC Case from decisions of the Labor Arbiter "shall become final
No. 00-11-09564-05/NLRC CA No. 049875-06, and executory after ten (10) calendar days from receipt
entitled: Jose Leni Z. Solidum vs. Smart thereof by the parties." The 2002 New Rules of
Communications, Inc., Napoleon L. Nazareno, and/or Procedure of the NLRC provided:
Ricky P. Isla, was promulgated on 29 May 2009; the
same was mailed on 11 June 2009 and in the RULE VII
absence of return cards, the decision had become
xxx xxx xxx
final and executory on 10 August 2009, (after sixty
(60) calendar days from the date of mailing), and had SECTION 14. FINALITY OF DECISION
been recorded in the Book of Entries of Judgment, OF THE COMMISSION AND ENTRY OF
pursuant to Rule VII Section 14 of the 2005 Revised JUDGMENT. — (a) Finality of the Decisions,
Rules of Procedure of the NLRC which provides: "The Resolutions or Orders of the Commission. Except
Executive Clerk or Deputy Executive Clerk shall consider as provided in Rule XI, Section 9, the decisions,
the decision, resolution or order as final and executory resolutions or orders of the Commission/Division
after sixty (60) calendar days from date of mailing in the shall become executory after ten (10) calendar
absence of return cards, certifications from the post days from receipt of the same.
office, or other proof of service to parties. 36 (Boldfacing
(b) Entry of Judgment. — Upon the
supplied)
expiration of the ten (10) calendar day period
provided in paragraph (a) of this section, the January 31, 2005 NLRC Resolution denying her Motion
decision/resolution/order shall, as far as for Reconsideration on February 23, 2005. There is no
practicable, be entered in a book of entries of showing that the Court of Appeals issued a temporary
judgment. restraining order to enjoin the execution of the NLRC
decision, as affirmed by its Resolution of January 31,
(c) Allowance for Delay of Mail in the
2005.
Issuance of Entries of Judgment. — In issuing
entries of judgment, the Executive Clerk of Court If above-quoted paragraph (a) of Section 14 of
or the Deputy Executive Clerk, in the absence of Rule VII of the 2002 NLRC New Rules of Procedure
a return card or certification from the post office were followed, the decision of the NLRC would have
concerned, shall determine the finality of the become final and executory on March 7, 2005, ten
decision by making allowance for delay of mail, (10) calendar days from February 25, 2005. The
computed sixty (60) calendar days from the date NLRC, however, issued on June 16, 2005 a Notice of
of mailing of the decision, resolution or order. Entry of Judgment stating that the NLRC Resolution
of January 31, 2005 became final and executory on
That the Court of Appeals may take cognizance
April 16, 2005, apparently following the above-
of and resolve a petition for certiorari for the nullification
quoted last paragraph of Section 14 of Rule VII. No
of the decisions of the NLRC on jurisdictional and due
objection having been raised by any of the parties to
process considerations does not affect the statutory
the declaration in the Notice of Entry of Judgment of
finality of the NLRC Decision. The 2002 New Rules of
the date of finality of the NLRC January 31, 2005
Procedure of the NLRC so provided: EAICTS
Resolution, Arlyn's payroll reinstatement ended on
RULE VIII April 16, 2005. . . .
xxx xxx xxx WHEREFORE, the petition is, in light of the
foregoing discussions, DENIED and the questioned
SECTION 6. EFFECT OF FILING OF decision of the court a quo is AFFIRMED with
PETITION FOR CERTIORARI ON EXECUTION. MODIFICATION in thatrespondent Standard
— A petition for certiorari with the Court of Insurance, Co., Inc. is ordered to pay the salaries due
Appeals or the Supreme Court shall not stay the petitioner, Arlyn Bago, from the time her payroll
execution of the assailed decision unless a reinstatement was withheld after the promulgation
temporary restraining order is issued by the Court on September 27, 2004 of the decision of the
of Appeals or the Supreme Court. National Labor Relations Commission until April 16,
In the case at bar, Arlyn received the September 2005 when it became final and
27, 2004 NLRC decision on October 25, 2004, and the executory. 38(Boldfacing supplied)
WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED. The Court of Appeals' 3 The Facts
July 2012 Amended Decision and 23 November 2012 Resolution in CA- On October 28, 1968, PAL hired Bichara as a flight attendant.
G.R. SP No. 115794 areAFFIRMED. Sometime in 1971, PAL implemented a retrenchment program. By
SO ORDERED. CcAITa April of that year, Bicharavoluntarily resigned. On May 15, 1975, he
was rehired. 6
||| (Smart Communications, Inc. v. Solidum, G.R. No. 204646 , [April 15,
2015]) In August 1993, Bichara was included in PAL's Purser
Upgrading Program in which he graduated on December 13, 1993.
SY V. FAIRLAND- PAGE 79 As flight purser, he was required to take five (5) check rides for his
performance evaluation and earn at least an 85% rating for each ride.
YUPANGCO V. CA However, Bichara failed in the two (2) check rides with ratings of
ANDO V. CAMPO- PAGE 84 83.46% and 80.63%. Consequently, on March 21,
1994, Bichara was demoted to the position of flight steward. 7
PHILIPPINE AIRLINES, INC., petitioner, vs. On March 22, 1994, Bichara appealed his demotion to PAL,
ALEXANDER P. BICHARA, respondent. but no action was taken; hence, he filed a complaint for illegal
demotion against PAL 8 before the NLRC-Regional Arbitration
Branch, docketed as NLRC NCR 04-03414-94 (illegal demotion
case). Eventually, or on June 16, 1997, Labor Arbiter Ricardo C.
DECISION
Nora (LA Nora) issued a Decision 9 (June 16, 1997
Decision) declaring Bichara's demotion as illegal, and accordingly,
ordered PAL to reinstate Bichara to his position as flight
PERLAS-BERNABE, J p: purser. 10 PAL filed an appeal before the NLRC and later before the
Assailed in this petition for review on certiorari 1 are the CA, both of which, however, upheld LA Nora's finding. PAL no longer
Decision 2 dated January 24, 2014 and the Resolution 3 dated July appealed to the Court, thus, it rendered the June 16, 1997
30, 2014 rendered by the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. SP. No. Decision final and executory on February 5, 2004. 11 caITAC
118777, which reversed and set aside the Decision 4 dated During the pendency of the illegal demotion case 12 before
November 23, 2010 and the Resolution 5 dated January 21, 2011 of the CA, however, or on July 15, 1998, PAL implemented another
the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) in NLRC NCR 00- retrenchment program that resulted in the termination of Bichara's
04-03414-94 (CA No. 013528-97) (AE-03-09), and thereby, ordered employment. 13 This prompted him, along with more than 1,400
petitioner Philippine Airlines, Inc. (PAL) to pay respondent Alexander other retrenched flight attendants, represented by the Flight
P. Bichara (Bichara) salary differentials, backwages, and retirement Attendants and Stewards Association of the Philippines (FASAP), to
benefits. file on June 22, 1998, a separate complaint for unfair labor practice,
illegal retrenchment with claims for reinstatement and payment of
salaries, allowances, backwages, and damages 14 against PAL, pendency of the illegal demotion case without the permission of the
docketed as NLRC-NCR Case No. 06-05100-98 15 (illegal court where the case was pending. 24 For these
retrenchment case). 16 This case was appealed all the way to this reasons, Bichara was entitled to reinstatement to his position as
Court, docketed as G.R. No. 178083 entitled "Flight Attendants and flight purser. However, since Bicharamay no longer be reinstated in
Stewards Assn. of the Phils. v. PAL, Patria T. Chiong, and view of his compulsory retirement in accordance with the CBA, LA
CA" (FASAP case), which remains pending as of this time. 17 Macam, instead, ordered PAL to pay Bichara separation pay with the
salary base of a flight purser. 25
On July 9, 2005, Bichara reached the 60 year-old
compulsory retirement age under the PAL-FASAP Collective Aggrieved, PAL appealed to the NLRC.
Bargaining Agreement (CBA). 18 The NLRC Ruling
On January 31, 2008, Bichara filed a motion for execution of In a Decision 26 dated November 23, 2010, the NLRC
LA Nora's June 16, 1997 Decision, 19 which PAL opposed 20 by reversed and set aside LA Macam's February 4, 2009 Order and
arguing that the "complaint for illegal demotion . . . was overtaken by denied the motion for execution for being moot and academic,
supervening events, i.e., the retrenchment of [Bichara] in 1998 and
considering Bichara's compulsory retirement in 2005, 27 without
his having reached [the] compulsory retirement age in 2005." 21 prejudice to the latter's entitlement to backwages and retirement
The LA Ruling benefits of a flight steward pursuant to this Court's final decision in
the FASAP case. 28
In an Order 22 dated February 4, 2009 (February 4, 2009
Order), Labor Arbiter Antonio R. Macam (LA Macam) At the outset, the NLRC ruled that Bichara's reinstatement
granted Bichara's motion for execution, thus, directing the issuance could have taken effect, if at all, only on January 31, 2008 when he
of a writ of execution against PAL and/or a certain Jose Garcia to sought the execution of the said relief. 29 In this light,
jointly and severally pay Bichara: (a) separation pay in lieu of his reinstatement and corresponding backwages prior to said
reinstatement equivalent to one (1) month's pay for every year of date must therefore be based on the salary rate and other
service counting from October 28, 1968 up to the present, excluding benefits attached to the position of flight steward to which he was
the period from April 1, 1971 until May 15, 1975, or a period of 35 demoted/reverted. 30 However, it declared that reinstatement is no
years; and (b) attorney's fees in the amount of P20,000.00. 23 longer possible as the same was rendered moot and academic when
he compulsorily retired in 2005. 31 On the other hand, the NLRC
LA Macam declared that, notwithstanding the pendency
before this Court of the illegal retrenchment case, i.e., FASAP concluded that the matter of payment of monetary benefits is not for
it to order since it is a relief pertaining to the pending FASAP case;
case, Bichara's termination was invalid, given that: (a) PAL did not
as such, Bichara should pursue payment of backwages when the
use a fair and reasonable criteria in effecting the
decision in the FASAP case is due for execution. In this relation, the
retrenchment; (b) PAL disregarded the labor arbiters' rulings in the
illegal demotion and illegal retrenchment cases which were both NLRC remarked that LA Macam exceeded his authority in awarding
immediately executory; and (c) retrenchment was made during the separation pay in lieu of reinstatement, since such relief is not
contemplated in the decision sought to be executed, i.e., the June The essential issue to be resolved is whether or not the CA
16, 1997 Decision. 32 erred in reversing the NLRC's Decision and thereby
awarding Bichara the aforementioned monetary awards.
Both parties moved for reconsideration, which were, however,
denied in a Resolution 33 dated January 21, 2011. The Court's Ruling
Dissatisfied, Bichara elevated the case to the CA through a petition The petition is partly meritorious.
for review on certiorari.
A judgment should be implemented according to the terms of
The CA Ruling its dispositive portion is a long and well-established rule. 41 As
In a Decision 34 dated January 24, 2014, the CA reversed such, where the writ of execution is not in harmony with and
and set aside the NLRC's ruling. It did not find LA Macam to have exceeds the judgment which gives it life, the writ has pro
exceeded his authority in ordering the payment of separation pay in tanto no validity. 42
lieu of reinstatement since, in a long line of cases, this Court has A companion to this rule is the principle of immutability of
consistently held that when reinstatement is not possible due to over final judgments, which states that a final judgment may no longer
age, payment of separation pay is in place. 35 The CA, however, be altered, amended or modified, even if the alteration, amendment
observed that since Bichara was one of the retrenched employees or modification is meant to correct what is perceived to be an
involved in the FASAP case, this Court's Decision dated October 2,
erroneous conclusion of fact or law and regardless of what court
2009, wherein it ruled that the retrenchment was illegal and thereby renders it. Any attempt to insert, change or add matters not clearly
stated that "[f]light attendants who have reached their compulsory contemplated in the dispositive portion violates the rule on
retirement age of retirement shall receive backwages up to the date immutability of judgments. 43 But like any other rule, this principle
of their retirement only," 36 should be made to apply. Thus, instead has exceptions, namely: (1) the correction of clerical errors; (2) the
of separation pay,Bichara is entitled to backwages from the time of so-called nunc pro tunc entries which cause no prejudice to any
his retrenchment up to the time he reached the compulsory party; (3) void judgments; and (4) whenever circumstances
retirement age of 60. In addition, since the June 16, 1997 Decision, transpire after the finality of the decision rendering its execution
rendered in the illegal demotion case, had already become final and unjust and inequitable. 44
executory, he is entitled to salary differentials of a flight purser from
a flight attendant from March 21, 1994, i.e., the date of his demotion, In this case, the final judgment sought to be executed is LA
up to the time of his retrenchment in July 1998. 37 He is also entitled Nora's June 16, 1997 Decision, which was confined to the directive
to retirement benefits in accordance with the existing CBA at the time that PAL reinstate Bichara as a flight purser in view of his illegal
of his retirement. 38 ICHDca demotion to the position of flight attendant:
PAL moved for reconsideration 39 which was denied in a IN VIEW OF ALL THE FOREGOING, judgment
Resolution 40 dated July 30, 2014; hence, this petition. is hereby rendered declaring the illegality of
complainant's [Bichara] demotion/reversion to Flight
The Issue Before the Court Steward and ordering the respondents [PAL] to
reinstate the complainant to his position as Flight demotion proceedings. Hence, LA Macam exceeded his authority
Purser within ten (10) days from receipt of this when he ruled on this issue and directed PAL to
Decision. pay Bichara separation pay in lieu of reinstatement.
The claim for damages is dismissed for lack of PAL's supervening retrenchment of its employees, which
merit. included Bichara, in July 1998, and his compulsory retirement in July
2005, however, prevent the enforcement of the reinstatement
SO ORDERED. 45
of Bichara to the position of flight purser under the June 16, 1997
Evidently, LA Macam went beyond the terms of the June 16, Decision. Nonetheless, since this Decision had already settled the
1997 Decision when he, in his February 4, 2009 Order, directed the illegality of Bichara's demotion with finality, this Court finds
issuance of a writ of executionordering the payment of separation that Bichara should, instead, be awarded the salary differential of
pay in lieu of reinstatement: a flight purser from a flight steward from the time of his illegal
WHEREFORE, finding merit in the demotion on March 21, 1994 up until the time he was retrenched in
complainant's [Bichara] Motion for Execution, the same July 1998. Notably, unlike LA Macam's award of separation pay in
is hereby GRANTED. Let a Writ of Execution be issued lieu of reinstatement, the award of salary differential is not dependent
ordering the respondents Philippine Airlines, Inc. on the validity of his termination, as it is, in fact, intrinsically linked to
and/or Jose Garcia, in lieu of reinstating the the illegality of Bichara's demotion. Hence, with this direct relation,
complainant to the position of Flight Purser, to jointly there should be no obstacle in rendering this award.
and severally PAY to the complainant his separation Further, it should be pointed out that the principle of
pay equivalent to one (1) month's pay for every year of immutability of judgments, from which the above-stated rule on writ
service counting from October 28, 1968 up to the of executions proceed, allow courts, as an exception, to recognize
present, excluding the period from April 1, 1971 until circumstances that transpire after the finality of the decision which
May 15, 1975, or a period of thirty-five (35) years and would render its execution unjust and inequitable and act
to pay the complainant the sum of Twenty Thousand accordingly. Thus, in view of the supervening events above-
Pesos (P20,000.00) for and as attorney's fees. mentioned, this Court deems the award of salary differential to be the
SO ORDERED. 46 just and equitable award under the circumstances herein prevailing.
Jurisprudence holds that courts may modify or alter the judgment to
Unlike the cases 47 cited by the CA, which all involved illegal harmonize the same with justice and the facts when after judgment
dismissal cases, it would not be proper to accord such relief in this has been rendered and the latter has become final, facts and
case since, in those cases, the awards of separation pay in lieu of circumstances transpire which render its execution impossible or
reinstatement were all hinged on the validity of the employee's unjust, 48 as in this case. TCAScE
dismissal. Here, the validity of Bichara's termination is the subject
matter of a separate case, i.e., the FASAP case, which is still As a last point, it deserves mentioning that since Bichara's
pending before this Court, and is also beyond the ambit of the illegal illegal demotion has been finally decreed, he should be entitled
to (a) backwages, at the salary rate of a flight purser, from the time DECISION
of retrenchment in July 1998 up until his compulsory retirement in
July 2005; (b) retirement benefits of a flight purser in accordance
with the existing CBA at the time of Bichara's retirement; PERALTA, J p:
and (c) attorney's fees, moral, and exemplary damages, if any, but
only if this Court, in the FASAP case, finally rules that the Before the Court is a petition for review on certiorari under
subject retrenchment is invalid. Otherwise, he should only be Rule 45 of the Rules of Court seeking to annul and set aside the
entitled to the above-stated salary differential, as well as the Court of Appeals Decision 1 dated June 8, 2011 and
corresponding separation pay required under the relevant CBA, or Resolution 2 dated October 7, 2011 in CA-G.R. SP No. 115485,
Article 297 49 (formerly Article 283) of the Labor Code if no such which affirmed in toto the decision of the National Labor Relations
CBA provision exists. The awards of backwages, and retirement Commission (NLRC).
benefits, including attorney's fees, moral, and exemplary damages, The facts of the case follow.
if any, cannot, however, be executed in these proceedings since they
are incidents which pertain to the illegal retrenchment case, hence, On March 11, 1996, respondent Crisanto
executable only when the FASAP case is finally concluded. P. Uson (Uson) began his employment with Royal Class Venture
Phils., Inc. (Royal Class Venture) as an accounting
WHEREFORE, the petition is PARTLY GRANTED. The clerk. 3Eventually, he was promoted to the position of accounting
Decision dated January 24, 2014 and the Resolution dated July 30, supervisor, with a salary of Php13,000.00 a month, until he was
2014 of Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP. No. 118777 are allegedly dismissed from employment on December 20, 2000. 4
hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. A new one is
entered ORDERING petitioner Philippine Airlines, Inc. to pay On March 2, 2001, Uson filed with the Sub-Regional
respondent Alexander P. Bichara the salary differential of a flight Arbitration Branch No. 1, Dagupan City, of the NLRC a Complaint for
purser from a flight attendant from the time of his illegal demotion on Illegal Dismissal, with prayers for backwages, reinstatement, salaries
March 21, 1994 up until the time he was retrenched on July 15, 1998. and 13th month pay, moral and exemplary damages and attorney's
fees against Royal Class Venture. 5
SO ORDERED.
Royal Class Venture did not make an appearance in the case
||| (Philippine Airlines, Inc. v. Bichara, G.R. No. 213729, [September 2, despite its receipt of summons. 6
2015])
On May 15, 2001, Uson filed his Position Paper 7 as
complainant.
JOSE EMMANUEL
P. GUILLERMO, petitioner, vs. CRISANTO On October 22, 2001, Labor Arbiter Jose G. De Vera rendered
P. USON, respondent. a Decision 8 in favor of the complainant Uson and ordering therein
respondent Royal Class Venture to reinstate him to his former
position and pay his backwages, 13th month pay as well as moral On the succeeding day, as per [advice] by the
and exemplary damages and attorney's fees. [complainant's] counsel that the respondent has an
account at the Bank of the Philippine Islands
Royal Class Venture, as the losing party, did not file an appeal
Magsaysay Branch, A.B. Fernandez Ave., Dagupan
of the decision. 9 Consequently, upon Uson's motion, a Writ of
City, the undersigned immediately served a notice of
Execution 10 dated February 15, 2002 was issued to implement the
garnishment, thus, the bank replied on the same day
Labor Arbiter's decision.
stating that the respondent [does] not have an account
On May 17, 2002, an Alias Writ of Execution 11 was issued. with the branch. 14
But with the judgment still unsatisfied, a Second Alias Writ of
On December 26, 2002, Labor Arbiter Irenarco R. Rimando
Execution 12 was issued on September 11, 2002.
issued an Order 15 granting the motion filed by Uson. The order held
Again, it was reported in the Sheriff's Return that the Second that officers of a corporation are jointly and severally liable for the
Alias Writ of Execution dated September 11, 2002 remained obligations of the corporation to the employees and there is no denial
"unsatisfied." Thus, on November 14, 2002, Uson filed a Motion for of due process in holding them so even if the said officers were not
Alias Writ of Execution and to Hold Directors and Officers of parties to the case when the judgment in favor of the employees was
Respondent Liable for Satisfaction of the Decision. 13 The motion rendered. 16 Thus, the Labor Arbiter pierced the veil of corporate
quoted from a portion of the Sheriff's Return, which states: fiction of Royal Class Venture and held herein petitioner Jose
On September 12, 2002, the undersigned Emmanuel Guillermo (Guillermo), in his personal capacity, jointly
proceeded at the stated present business office and severally liable with the corporation for the enforcement of the
address of the respondent which is at Minien East, Sta. claims of Uson. 17 CAIHTE
Barbara, Pangasinan to serve the writ of execution. Guillermo filed, by way of special appearance, a Motion for
Upon arrival, I found out that the establishment erected Reconsideration/To Set Aside the Order of December 26,
thereat is not [in] the respondent's name but JOEL and 2002. 18 The same, however, was not granted as, this time, in an
SONS CORPORATION, a family corporation owned by Order dated November 24, 2003, Labor Arbiter Niña Fe S. Lazaga-
the Guillermos of which, Jose Emmanuel Rafols sustained the findings of the labor arbiters before her and
F. Guillermo the General Manager of the respondent, even castigatedGuillermo for his unexplained absence in the prior
is one of the stockholders who received the writ using proceedings despite notice, effectively putting responsibility
his nickname "Joey," [and who] concealed his real on Guillermo for the case's outcome against him. 19
identity and pretended that he [was] the brother of
On January 5, 2004, Guillermo filed a Motion for
Jose, which [was] contrary to the statement of the
Reconsideration of the above Order, 20 but the same was promptly
guard-on-duty that Jose and Joey [were] one and the
denied by the Labor Arbiter in an Order dated January 7, 2004. 21
same person. The former also informed the
undersigned that the respondent's (sic) corporation
has been dissolved.
On January 26, 2004, Uson filed a Motion for Alias Writ of submitted and no appearances were made by anyone of them during
Execution, 22 to which Guillermo filed a Comment and Opposition the said motion's pendency. 33 Thus, the court held Guillermo liable,
on April 2, 2004. 23 citing jurisprudence that hold the president of the corporation liable
for the latter's obligation to illegally dismissed employees. 34 Finally,
On May 18, 2004, the Labor Arbiter issued an
the court dismissed Guillermo's allegation that the case is an intra-
Order 24 granting Uson's Motion for the Issuance of an Alias Writ of
corporate controversy, stating that jurisdiction is determined by the
Execution and rejecting Guillermo's arguments posed in his
allegations in the complaint and the character of the relief sought. 35
Comment and Opposition.
From the above decision of the appellate
Guillermo elevated the matter to the NLRC by filing a
court, Guillermo filed a Motion for Reconsideration 36 but the same
Memorandum of Appeal with Prayer for a (Writ of) Preliminary
was again denied by the said court in the assailed
Injunction dated June 10, 2004. 25
Resolution 37 dated October 7, 2011.
In a Decision 26 dated May 11, 2010, the NLRC
Hence, the instant petition.
dismissed Guillermo's appeal and denied his prayers for injunction.
Guillermo asserts that he was impleaded in the case only
On August 20, 2010, Guillermo filed a Petition
for Certiorari 27 before the Court of Appeals, assailing the NLRC more than a year after its Decision had become final and executory,
an act which he claims to be unsupported in law and
decision.
jurisprudence. 38 He contends that the decision had become final,
On June 8, 2011, the Court of Appeals rendered its assailed immutable and unalterable and that any amendment thereto is null
Decision 28 which denied Guillermo's petition and upheld all the and void. 39 Guillermo assails the so-called "piercing the veil" of
findings of the NLRC. corporate fiction which allegedly discriminated against him when he
The appellate court found that summons was in fact served alone was belatedly impleaded despite the existence of other
on Guillermo as President and General Manager of Royal Class directors and officers in Royal Class Venture. 40 He also claims that
Venture, which was how the Labor Arbiter acquired jurisdiction over the Labor Arbiter has no jurisdiction because the case is one of an
the company. 29 But Guillermo subsequently refused to receive all intra-corporate controversy, with the complainant Uson also claiming
notices of hearings and conferences as well as the order to file Royal to be a stockholder and director of Royal Class Venture. 41
Class Venture's position paper. 30 Then, it was learned during In his Comment, 42 Uson did not introduce any new
execution that Royal Class Venture had been arguments but merely cited verbatim the disquisitions of the Court of
dissolved. 31 However, the Court of Appeals held that although the Appeals to counter Guillermo's assertions in his petition.
judgment had become final and executory, it may be modified or
To resolve the case, the Court must confront the issue of
altered "as when its execution becomes impossible or unjust." 32 It
whether an officer of a corporation may be included as judgment
also noted that the motion to hold officers and directors
obligor in a labor case for the first time only after the decision of the
like Guillermo personally liable, as well as the notices to hear the
Labor Arbiter had become final and executory, and whether the twin
same, was sent to them by registered mail, but no pleadings were
doctrines of "piercing the veil of corporate fiction" and personal obligations in labor cases. According to these cases, a corporation is
liability of company officers in labor cases apply. still an artificial being invested by law with a personality separate and
distinct from that of its stockholders and from that of other
The petition is denied.
corporations to which it may be connected. 53 It is not in every
In the earlier labor cases of Claparols v. Court of Industrial instance of inability to collect from a corporation that the veil of
Relations 43 and A.C. Ransom Labor Union-CCLU v. corporate fiction is pierced, and the responsible officials are made
NLRC, 44 persons who were not originally impleaded in the case liable. Personal liability attaches only when, as enumerated by the
were, even during execution, held to be solidarily liable with the said Section 31 of the Corporation Code, there is a wilfull and
employer corporation for the latter's unpaid obligations to knowing assent to patently unlawful acts of the corporation, there is
complainant-employees. These included a newly-formed corporation gross negligence or bad faith in directing the affairs of the
which was considered a mere conduit or alter ego of the originally corporation, or there is a conflict of interest resulting in damages to
impleaded corporation, and/or the officers or stockholders of the the corporation. 54 Further, in another labor case, Pantranco
latter corporation. 45 Liability attached, especially to the responsible Employees Association (PEA-PTGWO), et al. v. NLRC, et al., 55 the
officers, even after final judgment and during execution, when there doctrine of piercing the corporate veil is held to apply only in three
was a failure to collect from the employer corporation the judgment (3) basic areas, namely: (1) defeat of public convenience as when
debt awarded to its workers. 46 In Naguiat v. NLRC, 47 the the corporate fiction is used as a vehicle for the evasion of an existing
president of the corporation was found, for the first time on appeal, obligation; (2) fraud cases or when the corporate entity is used to
to be solidarily liable to the dismissed employees. Then, in Reynoso justify a wrong, protect fraud, or defend a crime; or (3) alter
v. Court of Appeals, 48 the veil of corporate fiction was pierced at the ego cases, where a corporation is merely a farce since it is a mere
stage of execution, against a corporation not previously impleaded, alter ego or business conduit of a person, or where the corporation
when it was established that such corporation had dominant control is so organized and controlled and its affairs are so conducted as to
of the original party corporation, which was a smaller company, in make it merely an instrumentality, agency, conduit or adjunct of
such a manner that the latter's closure was done by the former in another corporation. In the absence of malice, bad faith, or a specific
order to defraud its creditors, including a former worker. DETACa provision of law making a corporate officer liable, such corporate
The rulings of this Court in A.C. officer cannot be made personally liable for corporate
Ransom, Naguiat, and Reynoso, however, have since been liabilities. 56 Indeed, in Reahs Corporation v. NLRC, 57 the
tempered, at least in the aspects of the lifting of the corporate veil conferment of liability on officers for a corporation's obligations to
and the assignment of personal liability to directors, trustees and labor is held to be an exception to the general doctrine of separate
officers in labor cases. The subsequent cases of McLeod v. personality of a corporation.
NLRC, 49 Spouses Santos v. NLRC 50 and Carag v. It also bears emphasis that in cases where personal liability
NLRC, 51 have all established, save for certain exceptions, the attaches, not even all officers are made accountable. Rather, only
primacy of Section 31 52 of the Corporation Code in the matter of the "responsible officer," i.e., the person directly responsible for and
assigning such liability for a corporation's debts, including judgment who "acted in bad faith" in committing the illegal dismissal or any act
violative of the Labor Code, is held solidarily liable, in cases wherein evidentiary, so that the records must first bear evidence of malice
the corporate veil is pierced. 58 In other instances, such as cases of before a finding of such may be made.
so-called corporate tort of a close corporation, it is the person It is our finding that such evidence exists in the record. Like
"actively engaged" in the management of the corporation who is held the A.C. Ransom, and Naguiat cases, the case at bar involves an
liable. 59 In the absence of a clearly identifiable officer(s) directly apparent family corporation. As in those two cases, the records of
responsible for the legal infraction, the Court considers the president the present case bear allegations and evidence that Guillermo, the
of the corporation as such officer. 60 officer being held liable, is the person responsible in the actual
The common thread running among the aforementioned running of the company and for the malicious and illegal dismissal of
cases, however, is that the veil of corporate fiction can be pierced, the complainant; he, likewise, was shown to have a role in dissolving
and responsible corporate directors and officers or even a separate the original obligor company in an obvious "scheme to avoid liability"
but related corporation, may be impleaded and held answerable which jurisprudence has always looked upon with a suspicious eye
solidarily in a labor case, even after final judgment and on execution, in order to protect the rights of labor. 64
so long as it is established that such persons have deliberately used Part of the evidence on record is the second page of the
the corporate vehicle to unjustly evade the judgment obligation, or verified Position Paper of complainant (herein respondent) Crisanto
have resorted to fraud, bad faith or malice in doing so. When the P. Uson, where it was clearly alleged that Uson was "illegally
shield of a separate corporate identity is used to commit wrongdoing dismissed by the President/General Manager of respondent
and opprobriously elude responsibility, the courts and the legal corporation (herein petitioner) Jose Emmanuel
authorities in a labor case have not hesitated to step in and shatter P. Guillermo when Uson exposed the practice of the said
the said shield and deny the usual protections to the offending party, President/General Manager of dictating and undervaluing the shares
even after final judgment. The key element is the presence of fraud, of stock of the corporation." 65 The statement is proof
malice or bad faith. Bad faith, in this instance, does not connote bad that Guillermo was the responsible officer in charge of running the
judgment or negligence but imports a dishonest purpose or some company as well as the one who dismissed Uson from employment.
moral obliquity and conscious doing of wrong; it means breach of a As this sworn allegation is uncontroverted — as neither the company
known duty through some motive or interest or ill will; it partakes of nor Guillermo appeared before the Labor Arbiter despite the service
the nature of fraud. 61 of summons and notices — such stands as a fact of the case, and
As the foregoing implies, there is no hard and fast rule on now functions as clear evidence of Guillermo's bad faith in his
when corporate fiction may be disregarded; instead, each case must dismissal of Uson from employment, with the motive apparently
be evaluated according to its peculiar circumstances. 62 For the being anger at the latter's reporting of unlawful activities. aDSIHc
case at bar, applying the above criteria, a finding of personal and Then, it is also clearly reflected in the records that it
solidary liability against a corporate officer like Guillermo must be was Guillermo himself, as President and General Manager of the
rooted on a satisfactory showing of fraud, bad faith or malice, or the company, who received the summons to the case, and who also
presence of any of the justifications for disregarding the corporate subsequently and without justifiable cause refused to receive all
fiction. As stated in McLeod, 63bad faith is a question of fact and is
notices and orders of the Labor Arbiter that followed. 66 This Court. Essentially, then, the facts form part of the records and now
makes Guillermoresponsible for his and his company's failure to stand as further proof of Guillermo's bad faith and malicious intent to
participate in the entire proceedings before the said office. The fact evade the judgment obligation.
is clearly narrated in the Decision and Orders of the Labor The foregoing clearly indicate a pattern or scheme to avoid
Arbiter, Uson's Motions for the Issuance of Alias Writs of Execution, the obligations to Uson and frustrate the execution of the judgment
as well as in the Decision of the NLRC and the assailed Decision of award, which this Court, in the interest of justice, will not
the Court of Appeals, 67which Guillermo did not dispute in any of his countenance. ATICcS
belated motions or pleadings, including in his petition
for certiorari before the Court of Appeals and even in the petition As for Guillermo's assertion that the case is an intra-corporate
currently before this Court. 68 Thus, again, the same now stands as controversy, the Court sustains the finding of the appellate court that
a finding of fact of the said lower tribunals which binds this Court and the nature of an action and the jurisdiction of a tribunal are
which it has no power to alter or revisit. 69 Guillermo's knowledge of determined by the allegations of the complaint at the time of its filing,
the case's filing and existence and his unexplained refusal to irrespective of whether or not the plaintiff is entitled to recover upon
participate in it as the responsible official of his company, again is all or some of the claims asserted therein. 71 Although Uson is also
anindicia of his bad faith and malicious intent to evade the judgment a stockholder and director of Royal Class Venture, it is settled in
of the labor tribunals. jurisprudence that not all conflicts between a stockholder and the
corporation are intra-corporate; an examination of the complaint
Finally, the records likewise bear that Guillermo dissolved must be made on whether the complainant is involved in his capacity
Royal Class Venture and helped incorporate a new firm, located in as a stockholder or director, or as an employee. 72 If the latter is
the same address as the former, wherein he is again a stockholder. found and the dispute does not meet the test of what qualifies as an
This is borne by the Sheriff's Return which reported: that at Royal intra-corporate controversy, then the case is a labor case cognizable
Class Venture's business address at Minien East, Sta. Barbara, by the NLRC and is not within the jurisdiction of any other
Pangasinan, there is a new establishment named "Joel and Sons tribunal. 73 In the case at bar, Uson's allegation was that he was
Corporation," a family corporation owned by the Guillermos in which maliciously and illegally dismissed as an Accounting Supervisor
Jose Emmanuel F. Guillermo is again one of the stockholders; by Guillermo, the Company President and General Manager, an
that Guillermo received the writ of execution but used the nickname allegation that was not even disputed by the latter nor by Royal Class
"Joey" and denied being Jose Emmanuel F. Guillermo and, instead, Venture. It raised no intra-corporate relationship issues between him
pretended to be Jose's brother; that the guard on duty confirmed that
and the corporation or Guillermo; neither did it raise any issue
Jose and Joey are one and the same person; and that the regarding the regulation of the corporation. As correctly found by the
respondent corporation Royal Class Venture had been appellate court, Uson's complaint and redress sought were centered
dissolved. 70 Again, the facts contained in the Sheriff's Return were alone on his dismissal as an employee, and not upon any other
not disputed nor controverted by Guillermo, either in the hearings relationship he had with the company or with Guillermo. Thus, the
of Uson's Motions for Issuance of Alias Writs of Execution, in matter is clearly a labor dispute cognizable by the labor tribunals.
subsequent motions or pleadings, or even in the petition before this
WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED. The Court of Appeals Salvador, Reynaldo Singsing, and Raffy Mascardo (respondents)
Decision dated June 8, 2011 and Resolution dated October 7, 2011 against Dutch Movers, Inc. (DMI), and/or spouses Cesar Lee and
in CA-G.R. SP No. 115485 areAFFIRMED. Yolanda Lee (petitioners), its alleged President/Owner, and Manager
respectively.
SO ORDERED.
||| (Guillermo v. Uson, G.R. No. 198967, [March 7, 2016]) In their Amended Complaint and Position
Paper, 9 respondents stated that DMI, a domestic corporation
engaged in hauling liquefied petroleum gas, employed Lequin as
DUTCH MOVERS, INC., CESAR LEE and YOLANDA truck driver, and the rest of respondents as helpers; on December
LEE, petitioners, vs. EDILBERTO 1 LEQUIN, 28, 2004, Cesar Lee, through the Supervisor Nazario Furio, informed
CHRISTOPHER R. SALVADOR, REYNALDO 2 L. them that DMI would cease its hauling operation for no reason; as
SINGSING, and RAFFY B. MASCARDO, respondents. such, they requested DMI to issue a formal notice regarding the
matter but to no avail. Later, upon respondents' request, the DOLE
NCR 10 issued a certification 11 revealing that DMI did not file any
DECISION notice of business closure. Thus, respondents argued that they were
illegally dismissed as their termination was without cause and only
on the pretext of closure.
DEL CASTILLO, J p: On October 28, 2005, LA Aliman D. Mangandog
dismissed 12 the case for lack of cause of action.
Before the Court is a Petition for Review
On November 23, 2007, the NLRC reversed and set aside the
on Certiorari assailing the July 1, 2013 Decision 3 of the Court of
LA Decision. It ruled that respondents were illegally dismissed
Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 113774. The CA reversed and set aside
because DMI simply placed them on standby, and no longer provide
the October 29, 2009 4 and January 29, 2010 5 Resolutions of the
them with work. The dispositive portion of the NLRC
National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC), which in turn
Decision 13 reads:
reversed and set aside the Order 6dated September 4, 2009 of Labor
Arbiter Lilia S. Savari (LA Savari). HTcADC WHEREFORE, the Decision dated October 28,
2005 is hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE and a
Also challenged is the November 13, 2013 CA
new judgment is hereby rendered ordering
Resolution, 7 which denied the Motion for Reconsideration on the
respondent DutchMovers, Inc. to reinstate
assailed Decision.
complainants to their former positions without loss of
Factual Antecedents seniority rights and other privileges. Respondent
This case is an offshoot of the illegal dismissal corporation is also hereby ordered to pay complainants
Complaint 8 filed by Edilberto Lequin (Lequin), Christopher their full backwages from the time they were illegally
dismissed up to the date of their actual reinstatement
and ten (10%) percent of the monetary award as for such undertaking, spouses Smith promptly transferred their
attorney's fees. supposed rights in DMI in favor of petitioners.
SO ORDERED. 14 Spouses Smith stressed that they never participated in the
management and operations of DMI, and they were not its
The NLRC Decision became final and executory on
stockholders, directors, officers, or managers at the time
December 30, 2007. 15 And, on February 14, 2008, the NLRC
respondents were terminated. They further insisted that they were
issued an Entry of Judgment 16 on the case.
not afforded due process as they were not impleaded from the
Consequently, respondents filed a Motion for Writ of inception of the illegal dismissal case; and hence, they cannot be
Execution. 17 Later, they submitted a Reiterating Motion for Writ of held liable for the liabilities of DMI.
Execution with Updated Computation of Full
On April 1, 2009, LA Savari issued an Order 22 holding
Backwages. 18 Pending resolution of these motions, respondents
petitioners liable for the judgment awards. LA Savari decreed that
filed a Manifestation and Motion to Implead 19 stating that upon
petitioners represented themselves to respondents as the owners of
investigation, they discovered that DMI no longer operates. They,
DMI; and were the ones who managed the same. She further noted
nonetheless, insisted that petitioners — who managed and operated
that petitioners were afforded due process as they were impleaded
DMI, and consistently represented to respondents that they were the
from the beginning of this case.
owners of DMI — continue to work at Toyota Alabang, which they
(petitioners) also own and operate. They further averred that the Later, respondents filed anew a Reiterating Motion for Writ of
Articles of Incorporation (AOI) of DMI ironically did not include Execution and Approve[d] Updated Computation of Full
petitioners as its directors or officers; and those named directors and Backwages. 23
officers were persons unknown to them. They likewise claimed that On July 31, 2009, LA Savari issued a Writ of Execution, the
per inquiry with the SEC 20 and the DOLE, they learned that DMI did pertinent portion of which reads:
not file any notice of business closure; and the creation and operation
of DMI was attended with fraud making it convenient for petitioners NOW THEREFORE, you [Deputy Sheriff] are
to evade their legal obligations to them. CAIHTE commanded to proceed to
respondents DUTCH MOVERS and/or CESAR LEE
Given these developments, respondents prayed that and YOLANDA LEE with address at c/o Toyota
petitioners, and the officers named in DMI's AOI, which included Alabang, Alabang Zapote Road, Las Piñas City or
Edgar N. Smith and Millicent C. Smith (spouses Smith), be wherever they may be found within the jurisdiction of
impleaded, and be held solidarily liable with DMI in paying the the Republic of the Philippines and collect from said
judgment awards. respondents the amount of THREE MILLION EIGHT
In their Opposition to Motion to Implead, 21 spouses Smith HUNDRED EIGHTEEN THOUSAND ONE HUNDRED
alleged that as part of their services as lawyers, they lent their names EIGHTY SIX PESOS & 66/100 (Php3,818,186.66)
to petitioners to assist them in incorporating DMI. Allegedly, after representing Complainants' awards plus 10%
Attorney's fees in the amount of THREE HUNDRED Let the entire record of the case be forwarded to
EIGHTY ONE THOUSAND EIGHT HUNDRED the Labor Arbiter of origin for appropriate proceedings.
EIGHTEEN PESOS & 66/100 (Php381,818.66) and SO ORDERED. 27
execution fee in the amount of FORTY THOUSAND
FIVE HUNDRED PESOS (Php40,500.00) or a total of The NLRC ruled that the Writ of Execution should only pertain
FOUR MILLION TWO HUNDRED FORTY to DMI since petitioners were not held liable to pay the awards under
THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED FIVE PESOS & 32/100 the final and executory NLRC Decision. It added that petitioners
(Php4,240,505.32) x x x 24 aScITE could not be sued personally for the acts of DMI because the latter
had a separate and distinct personality from the persons comprising
Petitioners moved 25 to quash the Writ of Execution it; and, there was no showing that petitioners were stockholders or
contending that the April 1, 2009 LA Order was void because the LA officers of DMI; or even granting that they were, they were not shown
has no jurisdiction to modify the final and executory NLRC Decision, to have acted in bad faith against respondents.
and the same cannot anymore be altered or modified since there was
no finding of bad faith against them. On January 29, 2010, the NLRC denied respondents' Motion
for Reconsideration. DETACa
Ruling of the Labor Arbiter
Undaunted, respondents filed a Petition for Certiorari with the
On September 4, 2009, LA Savari denied petitioners' Motion CA ascribing grave abuse of discretion against the NLRC in quashing
to Quash because it did not contain any ground that must be set forth the Writ of Execution insofar as it held petitioners liable to pay the
in such motion. judgment awards.
Thus, petitioners appealed to the NLRC. Ruling of the Court of Appeals
Ruling of the National Labor Relations Commission On July 1, 2013, the CA reversed and set aside the NLRC
On October 29, 2009, the NLRC quashed the Writ of Resolutions, and accordingly affirmed the Writ of Execution
Execution insofar as it held petitioners liable to pay the judgment impleading petitioners as party-respondents liable to answer for the
awards. The decretal portion of the NLRC Resolution reads: judgment awards.
WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, the The CA ratiocinated that as a rule, once a judgment becomes
assailed Order dated September 4, 2009 denying final and executory, it cannot anymore be altered or modified;
respondents' Motion to Quash Writ is hereby however, an exception to this rule is when there is a supervening
REVERSED and SET ASIDE. The Writ of Execution event, which renders the execution of judgment unjust or impossible.
dated July 13, 26 2009 is hereby QUASHED insofar as It added that petitioners were afforded due process as they were
it holds individual respondents Cesar Lee and Yolanda impleaded from the beginning of the case; and, respondents
Lee liable for the judgment award against the identified petitioners as the persons who hired them, and were the
complainants. ones behind DMI. It also noted that such participation of petitioners
was confirmed by DMI's two incorporators who attested that they lent such, they posit that they cannot be held liable under said NLRC
their names to petitioners to assist the latter in incorporating DMI; Decision. HEITAD
and, after their undertaking, these individuals relinquished their In addition, petitioners claim that there is no basis to pierce
purported interests in DMI in favor of petitioners. the veil of corporate fiction because DMI had a separate and distinct
On November 13, 2013, the CA denied the Motion for personality from the officers comprising it. They also insist that there
Reconsideration on the assailed Decision. was no showing that the termination of respondents was attended by
bad faith.
Thus, petitioners filed this Petition raising the following
grounds: In fine, petitioners argue that despite the allegation that they
operated and managed the affairs of DMI, they cannot be held
THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS
accountable for its liability in the absence of any showing of bad faith
COMMITTED A REVERSIBLE ERROR IN RULING
on their part.
THAT RESPONDENTS SHOULD BE LIABLE FOR
THE JUDGMENT AWARD TO RESPONDENTS Respondents, on their end, counter that petitioners were
BASED ON THE FOLLOWING: identified as the ones who owned and managed DMI and therefore,
they should be held liable to pay the judgment awards. They also
I
stress that petitioners were consistently impleaded since the filing of
THE VALDERAMA VS. NLRC AND DAVID VS. the complaint and thus, they were given the opportunity to be heard.
CA ARE NOT APPLICABLE IN THE INSTANT CASE.
Issue
II
Whether petitioners are personally liable to pay the judgment
THERE IS NO LEGAL BASIS TO PIERCE THE VEIL awards in favor of respondents
OF CORPORATE FICTION OF DUTCH MOVERS,
Our Ruling
INC. 28
Petitioners argue that the circumstances in Valderrama v. The Court denies the Petition.
National Labor Relations Commission 29 differ with those of the To begin with, the Court is not a trier of facts and only
instant case. They explain that inValderrama, the LA therein granted questions of law may be raised in a petition under Rule 45 of
a motion for clarification. In this case, however, the LA made the Rules of Court. This rule, nevertheless, allows certain
petitioners liable through a mere manifestation and motion to exceptions, which include such instance where the factual findings
implead filed by respondents. They further stated that in Valderrama, of the CA are contrary to those of the lower court or tribunal.
the body of the decision pointed out the liability of the individual Considering the divergent factual findings of the CA and the NLRC
respondents therein while here, there was no mention in the in this case, the Court deems it necessary to examine, review and
November 23, 2007 NLRC Decision regarding petitioners' liability. As evaluate anew the evidence on record. 30
Moreover, after a thorough review of the records, the Court In considering the foregoing events, the Court is not unmindful
finds that contrary to petitioners' claim, Valderrama v. National Labor of the basic tenet that a corporation has a separate and distinct
Relations Commission, 31 andDavid v. Court of Appeals 32 are personality from its stockholders, and from other corporations it may
applicable here. In said cases, the Court held that the principle of be connected with. However, such personality may be disregarded,
immutability of judgment, or the rule that once a judgment has or the veil of corporate fiction may be pierced attaching personal
become final and executory, the same can no longer be altered or liability against responsible person if the corporation's personality "is
modified and the court's duty is only to order its execution, is not used to defeat public convenience, justify wrong, protect fraud or
absolute. One of its exceptions is when there is a supervening event defend crime, or is used as a device to defeat the labor laws x x
occurring after the judgment becomes final and executory, which x." 35 By responsible person, we refer to an individual or entity
renders the decision unenforceable. 33 responsible for, and who acted in bad faith in committing illegal
dismissal or in violation of the Labor Code; or one who actively
To note, a supervening event refers to facts that transpired
participated in the management of the corporation. Also, piercing the
after a judgment has become final and executory, or to new situation
veil of corporate fiction is allowed where a corporation is a mere alter
that developed after the same attained finality. Supervening events
ego or a conduit of a person, or another corporation. 36
include matters that the parties were unaware of before or during trial
as they were not yet existing during that time. 34 aDSIHc Here, the veil of corporate fiction must be pierced and
In Valderrama, the supervening event was the closure of accordingly, petitioners should be held personally liable for judgment
awards because the peculiarity of the situation shows that they
Commodex, the company therein, after the decision became final
controlled DMI; they actively participated in its operation such that
and executory, and without any showing that it filed any proceeding
DMI existed not as a separate entity but only as business conduit of
for bankruptcy. The Court held that therein petitioner, the owner of
petitioners. As will be shown below, petitioners controlled DMI by
Commodex, was personally liable for the judgment awards because
making it appear to have no mind of its own, 37 and used DMI as
she controlled the company.
shield in evading legal liabilities, including payment of the judgment
Similarly, supervening events transpired in this case after the awards in favor of respondents. 38 ATICcS
NLRC Decision became final and executory, which rendered its
execution impossible and unjust. Like in Valderrama, during the First, petitioners and DMI jointly filed their Position
Paper, 39 Reply, 40 and Rejoinder 41 in contesting respondents'
execution stage, DMI ceased its operation, and the same did not file
illegal dismissal. Perplexingly, petitioners argued that they were not
any formal notice regarding it. Added to this, in their Opposition to
part of DMI and were not privy to its dealings; 42 yet, petitioners,
the Motion to Implead, spouses Smith revealed that they only lent
along with DMI, collectively raised arguments on the illegal dismissal
their names to petitioners, and they were included as incorporators
case against them.
just to assist the latter in forming DMI; after such undertaking,
spouses Smith immediately transferred their rights in DMI to Stated differently, petitioners denied having any participation
petitioners, which proved that petitioners were the ones in control of in the management and operation of DMI; however, they were aware
DMI, and used the same in furthering their business interests. of and disclosed the circumstances surrounding respondents'
employment, and propounded arguments refuting that respondents Respondents Spouses Cesar and Yolanda Lee, who
were illegally dismissed. acted as managers and are the real owners of the
corporation. Even at the time complainant[s were] fired
To note, petitioners revealed the annual compensation of
from [their] employment respondents Spouses Smith
respondents and their length of service; they also set up the defense
had already given up their shares. The failure to amend
that respondents were merely project employees, and were not
the Articles of Incorporation of [DMI], and to apply for
terminated but that DMI's contract with its client was discontinued
closure is the fault of the new board, if any was
resulting in the absence of hauling projects for respondents.
constituted subsequently, and not of Respondents
If only to prove that they were not part of DMI, petitioners Smiths. Whatever fraud committed was not committed
could have revealed who operated it, and from whom they derived by the Respondents Smiths, hence they could not be
the information embodied in their pleadings. Such failure to reveal made solidarily liable with Respondent Corporation or
thus gives the Court reasons to give credence to respondents' firm with the spouses Lee. If bad faith or fraud did attend
stand that petitioners are no strangers to DMI, and that they were the the termination of complainant[s], respondents Smiths
ones who managed and operated it. would know nothing of it because they had ceased any
Second, the declarations made by spouses Smith further connection with [DMI] even prior to such time. And they
bolster that petitioners and no other controlled DMI, to wit: had at the inception of the corporation never exercised
management prerogatives in the selection, hiring, and
Complainants [herein respondents] in their own firing of employees of [DMI]. 43 ETHIDa
motion admit that they never saw [spouses Smith] at
the office of [DMI], and do not know them at all. This is Spouses Smith categorically identified petitioners as the
because [spouses Smith's] services as lawyers had owners and managers of DMI. In their Motion to Quash, however,
long been dispensed by the Spouses Lee and had no petitioners neither denied the allegation of spouses Smith nor
hand whatsoever in the management of the company. adduced evidence to establish that they were not the owners and
The Smiths, as counsel of the spouses at [that] time, managers of DMI. They simply insisted that they could not be held
[lent] their names as incorporators to facilitate the personally liable because of the immutability of the final and
[incorporation of DMI.] Respondent Edgard Smith was executory NLRC Decision, and of the separate and distinct
then counsel of Toyota Alabang and acts as its personality of DMI.
corporate secretary and as favor to his former client Furthermore, the assailed CA Decision heavily relied on the
and employer, Respondent Cesar Lee, agreed to help declarations of spouses Smith but still petitioners did not address the
incorporate [DMI] and even asked his wife matters raised by spouses Smith in the instant Petition with the
Respondent, Millicent Smith, to act as incorporator also Court.
[to] complete the required 5 man incorporators. After
Indeed, despite sufficient opportunity to clarify matters and/or
the incorporation they assigned and transferred all their
to refute them, petitioners simply brushed aside the allegations of
purported participation in the company to the
spouses Smith that petitioners owned and managed DMI. Petitioners draw the line, and protect the right of workers to security of tenure,
just maintain that they did not act in bad faith; that the NLRC Decision including ensuring that they will receive the benefits they deserve
is final and executory; and that DMI has a distinct and separate when they fall victims of illegal dismissal. 46
personality. Hence, for failure to address, clarify, or deny the Finally, it appearing that respondents' reinstatement is no
declarations of spouses Smith, the Court finds respondents' position longer feasible by reason of the closure of DMI, then separation pay
that petitioners owned, and operated DMI with merit. should be awarded to respondents instead. 47
Third, piercing the veil of corporate fiction is allowed, and WHEREFORE, the Petition is DENIED. The July 1, 2013
responsible persons may be impleaded, and be held solidarily liable
Decision and November 13, 2013 Resolution of the Court of Appeals
even after final judgment and on execution, provided that such in CA-G.R. SP 113774 are AFFIRMEDwith MODIFICATION that
persons deliberately used the corporate vehicle to unjustly evade the instead of reinstatement, Dutch Movers, Inc. and spouses Cesar Lee
judgment obligation, or resorted to fraud, bad faith, or malice in and Yolanda Lee are solidarily liable to pay respondents' separation
evading their obligation. 44 pay for every year of service.
In this case, petitioners were impleaded from the inception of SO ORDERED.
this case. They had ample opportunity to debunk the claim that they
illegally dismissed respondents, and that they should be held ||| (Dutch Movers, Inc. v. Lequin, G.R. No. 210032, [April 25, 2017])
personally liable for having controlled DMI and actively participated
in its management, and for having used it to evade legal obligations REPUBLIC ACT No. 10706
to respondents.
AN ACT PROTECTING SEAFARERS AGAINST AMBULANCE CHASING AND
While it is true that one's control does not by itself result in the IMPOSITION OF EXCESSIVE FEES, AND PROVIDING PENALTIES
disregard of corporate fiction; however, considering the irregularity in THEREFOR
the incorporation of DMI, then there is sufficient basis to hold that
such corporation was used for an illegal purpose, including evasion Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in
of legal duties to its employees, and as such, the piercing of the Congress assembled:
corporate veil is warranted. The act of hiding behind the cloak of
corporate fiction will not be allowed in such situation where it is used SECTION 1. This Act shall be known as the “Seafarers Protection Act”.
to evade one's obligations, which "equitable piercing doctrine was
SECTION 2. Declaration of Policy. — It shall be the policy of the State to
formulated to address and prevent." 45 TIADCc
promote and protect every Filipino seafarer desiring to work overseas by
Clearly, petitioners should be held liable for the judgment securing the best possible terms and conditions of employment. As some
awards as they resorted to such scheme to countermand labor laws unscrupulous individuals have taken advantage of the plight of our seafarers who
by causing the incorporation of DMI but without any indication that met an accident, illness or death in the course of their service by exploiting the
compensation system, our seafarers have fallen prey to an unfair scheme where
they were part thereof. While such device to defeat labor laws may
be deemed ingenious and imaginative, the Court will not hesitate to
ambulance chasers charge exorbitant fees, with the promise of huge monetary promulgate the necessary rules and regulations for the effective implementation
award. Towards this end, such practice shall be declared unlawful. of the provisions of this Act.

SECTION 3. Prohibition on Ambulance Chasing. — It shall be unlawful for any SECTION 7. Repealing Clause. — All laws, orders, issuances, decrees, rules
person to engage in ambulance chasing or the act of soliciting, personally or and regulations inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed or
through an agent, from seafarers, or their heirs, the pursuit of any claim against modified accordingly.
them employers for the purpose of recovery of monetary claim or benefit,
including legal interest, arising from accident, illness or death, in exchange of an SECTION 8. Effectvity Clause. — This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days after
amount or fee which shall be retained or deducted from the monetary claim or its publication in the Official Gazette or in at least two (2) newspapers of general
benefit granted to or awarded to the seafarers or their heirs. circulation.

SECTION 4. Imposition of Excessive Fees. — When any contract or ART. 232


arrangement between a seafarer or his/her heirs, and a person who appears for
or represents them in any case for recovery of monetary claim or benefit, EU OF BAYERS V. BAYERS- PAGE 84
including legal interest, arising from accident, illness or death before the National
Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) or any labor arbiter, the National
MONTANO V. VERCES
Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB), the Philippine Overseas Employment
Administration (POEA), the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) or its
regional offices, or other quasi-judicial bodies handling labor disputes stipulates DIOKNO V. CACDAD- PAGE 88
that the person who appears for or represents them shall be entitled to fees, such
fees shall not exceed ten percent (10%) of the compensation or benefit awarded ART. 233
to the seafarer or his/her heirs.
MAGBANUA V. UY- PAGE 89
For purposes of this Act, fees referred to in this section shall mean the total
amount of compensation of the person who appears for or represents the SOLOMON V. POWERTECH
seafarer, or his/her heirs for services rendered.
PHILIPPINES JOURNALIST V. NLRC- PAGE 94
SECTION 5. Penalties. — Any person who violates Section 3 of this Act shall be
punished by a fine of not less than fifty thousand pesos (P50,000.00) but not ART. 238
more than one hundred thousand pesos (P100,000.00), or by imprisonment of
one (1) year but not more than two (2) years, or both fine and imprisonment. The COLEGIO V. AEF OF LETRAN- PAGE 94
same penalties shall be imposed upon any person who shall be in collusion in
the commission of the prohibited act in Section 3 hereof.
MARIWASA TO EDGARDO MARINO- PAGE 96 TO 120
1âwphi1

SECTION 6. Implementing Rules and Regulations. — Within ninety (90) days


from the approval of this Act, the Secretary of Labor and Employment, in ERGONOMIC SYSTEMS PHILIPPINES, INC.,
coordination with the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and the POEA, shall PHILLIP C. NG and MA. LOURMINDA O.
NG, petitioners, vs. EMERITO C. ENAJE, PATERNO LINOGO, ISAGANI MASANGKA,
BENEDICTO P. ABELLO, ALEX M. MALAYLAY, ANGELITO MONTILLA, PECIFICO
FRANCISCO Q. ENCABO, JR., RICO SAMSON, NIGPARANON, NOBE SALVADOR, MANUEL
ROWENA BETITIO, FELIPE N. CUSTOSA, JAIME OAVENGA, REYNADO ORTIZ, ROMEO
A. JUATAN, LEOVINO J. MULINTAPANG, QUINTANA, JERNALD REMOTIN, REYNALDO
NELSON L. ONTE, EMILIANO P. RONE, ROLIETO ROBLESA, SAMUEL ROSALES, ROBERTO
LLAMADO, AMORPIO R. ADRIANO, JIMMY SANTOS, RONALDO M. SANTOS, ROCKY
ALCANTARA, BERNARDO ANTONI, HERMINITO TALOLONG, EMILIO TONGA, BERNARDO
BEDRIJO, ROMEO BELARMINO, YOLANDA VALDEZ, DANTE L. VELASCO, RENE V.
CANOPIN, ALMELITO CUABO, RICARDO DEL VICENTE, JAIME BENTUCO, MARINO CACAO,
PILAR, ELMER DESQUITADO, WINEFREDO CARLITO DELA CERNA, CHRISTOPHER
DESQUITADO, DEMETRIO DIAZ, ERICK MASAGCA, CHRISTOPHER PALOMARES,
ECRAELA, QUINTERO ENRIQUEZ, CRISANTO ROLANDO PATOTOY, ASER PESADO, JR.,
FERNANDEZ, ROMMEL FLORES, NELSON LEONILO RICAFORT, FELIX SANCHEZ and
FRIAS, PEDRITO GIRON, DOMINADOR C. FRANCIS O. ZANTUA, respondents.
GUIMALDO, JR., AMBROSIO HENARES,
TERENCIO HENARES, ALBERT LACHICA,
ALBERTO LORENZO, JOEL MALAYLAY, SUSAN DECISION
MALBAS, ROLANDO MAMARIL, TEDDY
MONTIBLE, FERNANDO OFALDA, RONNIE V.
OLIVAY, RAUL PAGOLONG, LORENZO MARTIRES, J : p

RANIEGO, AMADO V. SAMSON IV, ROEL P.


SORIANO, JONATHAN SUALIBIO, ESTEBAN This is a petition for review on certiorari assailing the
SUMICAO, JOSEPH TABADAY, EPIFANIO Decision, 1 dated 21 September 2010, and Resolution, 2 dated
TABAREZ, REGIE TOTING, REYNALDO TOTING, 14 January 2011, of the Court of Appeals (CA), in CA-G.R. SP
NORMAN VALENZUELA, ROLANDO YONSON, No. 102802, which affirmed with modification the
DIOSCORO BALAJADIA, NERRY BALINAS, decision, 3 dated 31 October 2007, and resolution, 4 dated 21
NOEL BALMEO, ARNALDO A. CASTRO, December 2007, of the National Labor Relations
GERONCIO DELA CUEVA, ALBERTO GAPASIN, Commission (NLRC) in NLRC NCR No. RAB IV-01-16813-03-
JULIUS GENOVA, LORETO GRACILLA, JR., L. The NLRC, in turn, affirmed the decision, 5 dated 31 January
ROBERTO S. INGIENTE, ROQUE JOVEN, 2005, of Labor Arbiter Generoso V. Santos (LA) in NLRC NCR
No. RAB IV-01-16813-03-L, a case for illegal dismissal and On 11 January 2002, the Federation furnished ESPI with
unfair labor practice.EATCcI a copy of its decision against respondents-union officers and
recommended the termination of their employment by invoking
Sections 2 and 3, Article 2 of the CBA. 11
THE FACTS
ESPI notified respondents-union officers of the
Respondents were union officers and members Federation's demand and gave them 48 hours to explain.
of Ergonomic System Employees Union-Workers Alliance Except for Nelson Onte, Emiliano Rone, and Rico Samson, the
Trade Unions (local union). On 29 October 1999, the local rest of the officers refused to receive the notices. Thereafter, on
union entered into a Collective Bargaining 20 February 2002, respondents-union officers were issued
Agreement (CBA) 6 with petitioner Ergonomic Systems letters of termination, which they again refused to receive. On
Philippines, Inc. (ESPI), 7 which was valid for five (5) years or 26 February 2002, ESPI submitted to the DOLE a list of the
until October 2004. The local union, which was affiliated with dismissed employees. On the same day, the local union filed a
Workers Alliance Trade Unions-Trade Union Congress of the notice of strike with the National Conciliation and Mediation
Philippines (Federation), was not independently registered. Board (NCMB). 12
Thus, on 15 November 2001, before the CBA expired, the union From 21 February to 23 February 2002, the local union
officers secured the independent registration of the local union staged a series of noise barrage and "slow down" activities.
with the Regional Office of the Department of Labor and Meanwhile, on 22 February 2002, 40 union members identified
Employment (DOLE). Later on, the union officers were charged as: Amorpio Adriano, Jimmy Alcantara, Bernardo Antoni,
before the Federation and investigated for attending and Herminito Bedrijo, Romeo Belarmino, Yolanda Canopin,
participating in other union's seminars and activities using union Almelito Cuabo, Ricardo Del Pilar, Elmer Desquitado,
leaves without the knowledge and consent of the Federation Winefredo Desquitado, Demetrio Diaz, Erick Ecraela, Quintero
and ESPI as well as in initiating and conspiring in the Enriquez, Crisanto Fernandez, Rommel Flores, Nelson Frias,
disaffiliation before the freedom period. 8 Pedrito Geron, Dominador Guimaldo, Ambrosio Henarez,
On 10 January 2002, the Federation rendered a Terencio Henares, Albert Lachica, Alberto Lorenzo, Joel
decision 9 finding respondents-union officers Emerito C. Enaje, Malaylay, Susan Malbas, Rolando Manaril, Teddy Montible,
Benedicto P. Abello, Alex M. Malaylay, Francisco G. Encabo, Fernando Ofaldo, Ronie Olivay, Raul Pagolong, Lorenzo
Jr., Rico Samson, Rowena Betitio, Felipe N. Custosa, Jaime A. Raniego, Amado Samson-Ty, Roel Soriano, Jonathan Sualibio,
Juatan, Leovino Mulintapang, Nelson L. Onte, Emiliano P. Esteban Sumicao, Joseph Tabaday, Epifanio Tabarez, Regie
Rone, and Rolieto Llamado guilty of disloyalty. They were Toting, Reynaldo Toting, Norman Valenzuela and Rolando
penalized with immediate expulsion from the Federation. 10
Yonson refused to submit their Daily Production Reports In a decision, dated 31 January 2005, the LA held that
(DPRs). the local union was the real party in interest and the Federation
On 26 February 2002, 28 union members namely was merely an agent in the CBA; thus, the union officers and
Dioscoro Balajadia, Nerry Balinas, Noel Balmeo, Arnaldo members who caused the implied disaffiliation did not violate
Castro, Geroncio Dela Cueva, Alberto Gapasin, Julius Genova, the union security clause. Consequently, their dismissal was
Loreto Gracilla, Roberto Ingiente, Jr., Roque Joven, Paterno unwarranted. Nevertheless, the LA ruled that since ESPI
Linogo, Isagani Masangka, Angelito Montilla, Pecifico effected the dismissal in response to the Federation's demand
Nigparanon, Salvador Nobe, Manuel Oavenga, Reynaldo Ortiz, which appeared to be justified by a reading of the union security
Romeo Quintana, Jernard Remotin, Reynaldo Roblesa, clause, it would be unjust to hold ESPI liable for the normal
Samuel Rosales, Roberto Santos, Ronaldo Santos, Rocky consequences of illegal dismissal.
Talolong, Emilio Tonga, Bernardo Valdez, Dante Velasco and The LA further opined that there was no ground for the
Rene Vicente abandoned their work and held a picket line dismissal of the union members because the refusal to submit
outside the premises of ESPI. DPRs and failure to report for work were meant to protest the
Then, from 26 February 2002 to 2 March 2002, 10 union dismissal of their officers, not to sever employer-employee
members, namely Jaime Bentuco, Marina Cacao, Carlito Dela relationship. He added that neither ESPI nor the respondents
Cerna, Christopher Masagca, Christopher Palomares, Rolando were at fault for they were merely protecting their respective
Patotoy, Aser Pesado, Jr., Leonilo Ricafort, Felix Sanchez and interests. In sum, the LA ordered all the respondents to return
Francis Santua did not report for work without official leave. The to work but without back wages. The fallo reads:
union members were required to submit their explanation why WHEREFORE, premises considered, judgment
they should not be sanctioned for their refusal to submit DPRs is hereby rendered ordering the complainants to report
and abandonment of work, but they either refused to receive back to their former jobs within ten (10) days from
the notices or received them under protest. Further, they did not receipt of this Decision and the respondent company is
submit their explanation as required. Subsequently, for refusal in turn directed to accept them back but without back
wages. In the event however, that this is no longer
to submit DPRs and for abandonment, respondents-union
possible, the respondent company is ordered to pay
members were issued letters of termination. 13 the complainants their separation pay computed at
On 27 January 2003, the respondents filed a complaint one-half (1/2) month salary for every year of service, a
for illegal dismissal and unfair labor practice against ESPI, fraction of at least six (6) months to be considered as
Phillip C. Ng, and Ma. Lourminda O. Ng(petitioners). 14 DHITCc
one (1) whole year. The respondent is likewise ordered
to pay complainants attorney's fees equivalent to ten
The Labor Arbiter's Ruling (10%) percent of the total thereof as attorney's fees.
All other claims are dismissed for lack of merit. The CA Ruling
SO ORDERED. 15
In its decision, dated 21 September 2010, the CA
Unconvinced, petitioners and respondents appealed affirmed with modification the NLRC ruling. It held that ESPI
before the NLRC. and the respondents acted in good faith when the former
The NLRC Ruling dismissed the latter and when the latter, in turn, staged a strike
without complying with the legal requirements. The CA,
In a decision, dated 31 October 2007, the NLRC affirmed however, pronounced that the concept of separation pay as an
the ruling of the LA. It adjudged that the dismissal of the union alternative to reinstatement holds true only in cases wherein
officers was effected only in response to the demand of the there is illegal dismissal, a fact which does not exist in this case.
Federation and to comply with the union security clause under The dispositive portion reads:
the CBA. The NLRC concluded that since there was no WHEREFORE, the instant petition is
disloyalty to the union, but only disaffiliation from the Federation PARTIALLY GRANTED. The Decision of the Labor
which was a mere agent in the CBA, the cause for the Arbiter, as sustained by the National Labor Relations
respondents' dismissal was non-existent. It disposed the case Commission, reverting the employer-employee
in this wise: position of the parties to the status quo ante is
AFFIRMED, with MODIFICATION, in that the provision
WHEREFORE, premises considered, the
on the award of separation pay in lieu of reinstatement
appeals separately filed by complainants and
is deleted.
respondents from the Decision of Labor Arbiter
Generoso V. Santos dated January 31, 2005 are both SO ORDERED. 17
DISMISSED for lack of merit.
Aggrieved, petitioners and respondents moved for
The appeal filed by complainants from the Order reconsideration but the same was denied by the CA in a
dated January 4, 2007 is likewise DISMISSED for lack resolution, dated 14 January 2011.
of merit.
Hence, this petition.
The assailed Orders are hereby AFFIRMED.
SO ORDERED. 16
ISSUES
Undeterred, petitioners and respondents moved for
reconsideration. Their motions, however, were denied by the I. WHETHER THE FEDERATION MAY INVOKE THE
NLRC in a resolution, dated 21 December 2007. UNION SECURITY CLAUSE IN DEMANDING
THE RESPONDENTS' DISMISSAL; cEaSHC
II. WHETHER THE STRIKE CONDUCTED BY THE of ESPI; that even if the manufacturing plant of ESPI was
RESPONDENTS COMPLIED WITH THE LEGAL indeed destroyed by fire, the petitioners have other offices
REQUIREMENTS; around the country where the respondents may be reinstated;
III. WHETHER THE RESPONDENTS' DISMISSAL and that having failed to comply with the order to reinstate them
FROM EMPLOYMENT WAS VALID. and having ceased operations, the petitioners must be ordered
The petitioners argue that the respondents failed to to pay their separation pay.
comply with two (2) of the procedural requirements for a valid In their reply, 20 the petitioners aver that the respondents
strike, i.e., taking of a strike vote and observance of the seven- violated the union security clause under the CBA; that their
day period after submission of the strike vote report; that mere termination was effected in response to the Federation's
participation of union officers in the illegal strike is a ground for demand to dismiss them; that they did not comply with the
termination of employment; that the union members committed requisites of a valid strike; that they refused to submit their
illegal acts during the strike which warranted their DPRs and abandoned their work; and that the award of
dismissal, i.e., obstruction of the free ingress to and egress separation pay had no basis because the respondents had
from ESPI's premises and commission of acts of violence, been legally dismissed from their employment.
coercion or intimidation; that the respondents are not entitled to
reinstatement or separation pay because they were validly
dismissed from employment; that the union members who THE COURT'S RULING
unjustly refused to submit their DPRs and abandoned their work
were rightfully terminated because their acts constituted Only the local union may
serious misconduct or willful disobedience of lawful orders; and invoke the union security
that reinstatement is no longer possible because the industrial clause in the CBA.
building owned by Ergo Contracts Philippines, Inc. was totally
destroyed by fire on 6 February 2005. 18 The controversy between ESPI and the respondents
originated from the Federation's act of expelling the union
In their comment, 19 the respondents counter that they officers and demanding their dismissal from ESPI. Thus, to
were not legally terminated because the grounds relied upon by arrive at a proper resolution of this case, one question to be
the petitioners were non-existent; that as ruled by the NLRC, answered is whether the Federation may invoke the union
they merely disaffiliated from the Federation but they were not security clause in the CBA.
disloyal to the local union; that reinstatement is not physically
impossible because it was the industrial building owned by Ergo "Union security is a generic term, which is applied to and
Contracts Philippines, Inc. that was gutted down by fire, not that comprehends 'closed shop,' 'union shop,' 'maintenance of
membership,' or any other form of agreement which imposes union and reported to the Regional Office. 23 "A local union
upon employees the obligation to acquire or retain union does not owe its existence to the federation with which it is
membership as a condition affecting employment. There is affiliated. It is a separate and distinct voluntary association
union shop when all new regular employees are required to join owing its creation to the will of its members. Mere affiliation
the union within a certain period as a condition for their does not divest the local union of its own personality, neither
continued employment. There is maintenance of membership does it give the mother federation the license to act
shop when employees, who are union members as of the independently of the local union. It only gives rise to a contract
effective date of the agreement, or who thereafter become of agency, where the former acts in representation of the latter.
members, must maintain union membership as a condition for Hence, local unions are considered principals while the
continued employment until they are promoted or transferred federation is deemed to be merely their agent." 24 CTIEac

out of the bargaining unit, or the agreement is terminated. A The union security clause in the CBA between ESPI and
closed shop, on the other hand, may be defined as an the local union provides:
enterprise in which, by agreement between the employer and
his employees or their representatives, no person may be SECTION 1. Union Shop. All regular, permanent
employed in any or certain agreed departments of the employees covered by this Agreement who are
members of the UNION as of the date of effectivity of
enterprise unless he or she is, becomes, and, for the duration
this Agreement as well as any employees who shall
of the agreement, remains a member in good standing of a subsequently become members of the UNION during
union entirely comprised of or of which the employees in the lifetime of this Agreement or any extension, thereof,
interest are a part." 21 shall as a condition of continued employment, maintain
Before an employer terminates an employee pursuant to their membership in the UNION during the term of this
the union security clause, it needs to determine and prove that: Agreement or any extension thereof.
(1) the union security clause is applicable; (2) the union is xxx xxx xxx
requesting the enforcement of the union security provision in SECTION 3. The COMPANY shall terminate the
the CBA; and (3) there is sufficient evidence to support the services of any concerned employee when so
decision of the union to expel the employee from the union. 22 requested by the UNION for any of the following
In this case, the primordial requisite, i.e., the union is reasons:
requesting the enforcement of the union security provision in a. Voluntary Resignation from the Union
the CBA, is clearly lacking. Under the Labor Code, a chartered during the term of this Agreement or any
local union acquires legal personality through the charter extension thereof;
certificate issued by a duly registered federation or national
b. Non-payment of membership fee, does not give the Federation the privilege to act independently
regular monthly dues, mutual aid benefit of the local union. At most, what the Federation could do is to
and other assessments submitted by the refuse to recognize the local union as its affiliate and revoke the
UNION to the COMPANY; charter certificate it issued to the latter. In fact, even if the local
c. Violation of the UNION Constitution union itself disaffiliated from the Federation, the latter still has
and Bylaws. The UNION shall furnish the no right to demand the dismissal from employment of the union
COMPANY a copy of their Constitution officers and members because concomitant to the union's
and Bylaws and any amendment prerogative to affiliate with a federation is its right to disaffiliate
thereafter. therefrom which the Court explained in Philippine Skylanders,
d. Joining of another Union whose Inc. v. NLRC,27 viz.:
interest is adverse to the UNION, The right of a local union to disaffiliate from its
AWATU, during the lifetime of this mother federation is not a novel thesis unillumined by
Agreement. case law. In the landmark case of Liberty Cotton Mills
e. Other acts which are inimical to the Workers Union vs. Liberty Cotton Mills, Inc., we upheld
interests of the UNION and AWATU. 25 the right of local unions to separate from their mother
federation on the ground that as separate and
There is no doubt that the union referred to in the voluntary associations, local unions do not owe their
foregoing provisions is the Ergonomic Systems Employees creation and existence to the national federation to
Union or the local union as provided in Article I of the CBA. 26 A which they are affiliated but, instead, to the will of their
perusal of the CBA shows that the local union, not the members. The sole essence of affiliation is to increase,
Federation, was recognized as the sole and exclusive collective by collective action, the common bargaining power of
bargaining agent for all its workers and employees in all matters local unions for the effective enhancement and
concerning wages, hours of work, and other terms and protection of their interests. Admittedly, there are times
conditions of employment. Consequently, only the union may when without succor and support local unions may find
invoke the union security clause in case any of its members it hard, unaided by other support groups, to secure
commits a violation thereof. Even assuming that the union justice for themselves.
officers were disloyal to the Federation and committed acts Yet the local unions remain the basic units of
inimical to its interest, such circumstance did not give the association, free to serve their own interests subject to
Federation the prerogative to demand the union officers' the restraints imposed by the constitution and bylaws
dismissal pursuant to the union security clause which, in the of the national federation, and free also to renounce the
first place, only the union may rightfully invoke. Certainly, it affiliation upon the terms laid down in the agreement
which brought such affiliation into existence. 28
In sum, the Federation could not demand the dismissal busting. 36 Nevertheless, the second and third requirements
from employment of the union officers on the basis of the union are still mandatory. In this case, it is apparent that the union
security clause found in the CBA between ESPI and the local conducted a strike without seeking a strike vote and without
union. submitting a report thereon to the DOLE. Thus, the strike which
A strike is deemed illegal for commenced on 21 February 2002 was illegal.
failure to take a strike vote and Liabilities of union officers
to submit a report thereon to and members
the NCMB.
Article 279 (a) 37 of the Labor Code provides:
A strike is the most powerful weapon of workers in their Art. 279. Prohibited activities. — (a) x x x
struggle with management in the course of setting their terms
and conditions of employment. As such, it either breathes life to xxx xxx xxx
or destroys the union and its members. 29 Any union officer who knowingly participates in an
illegal strike and any worker or union officer who
Procedurally, for a strike to be valid, it must comply with knowingly participates in the commission of illegal acts
Article 278 30 of the Labor Code, which requires that: (a) a during a strike may be declared to have lost his
notice of strike be filed with the NCMB 30 days before the employment status: Provided, That mere participation
intended date thereof, or 15 days in case of unfair labor of a worker in a lawful strike shall not constitute
practice; (b) a strike vote be approved by a majority of the total sufficient ground for termination of his employment,
union membership in the bargaining unit concerned, obtained even if a replacement had been hired by the employer
by secret ballot in a meeting called for that purpose; and (c) a during such lawful strike.
notice be given to the NCMB of the results of the voting at least In the determination of the consequences of illegal
seven days before the intended strike. These requirements are strikes, the law makes a distinction between union members
mandatory, and the union's failure to comply renders the strike and union officers. The services of an ordinary union member
illegal. 31
SaCIDT
cannot be terminated for mere participation in an illegal strike;
The union filed a notice of strike on 20 February proof must be adduced showing that he or she committed illegal
2002. 32 The strike commenced on 21 February 2002. 33 The acts during the strike. A union officer, on the other hand, may
strike vote was taken on 2 April 2002 34 and the report thereon be dismissed, not only when he actually commits an illegal act
was submitted to the NCMB on 4 April 2002. 35 Indeed, the first during a strike, but also if he knowingly participates in an illegal
requisite or the cooling-off period need not be observed when strike. 38
the ground relied upon for the conduct of strike is union-
In the present case, respondents-union officers stand to prevented from working. While it was found that
be dismissed as they conducted a strike despite knowledge that respondents expressed their intention to report back to
a strike vote had not yet been approved by majority of the union work, the latter exception cannot apply in this case.
and the corresponding strike vote report had not been In Philippine Marine Officers' Guild v. Compañia
submitted to the NCMB. Maritima, as affirmed in Philippine Diamond Hotel and
Resort v. Manila Diamond Hotel Employees Union, the
With respect to respondents-union members, the Court stressed that for this exception to apply, it is
petitioners merely alleged that they committed illegal acts required that the strike be legal, a situation that does
during the strike such as obstruction of ingress to and egress not obtain in the case at bar.40 (emphases supplied)
from the premises of ESPI and execution of acts of violence Thus, in the case at bar, respondents-union members'
and intimidation. There is, however, a dearth of evidence to reinstatement without back wages suffices for the appropriate
prove such claims. Hence, there is no basis to dismiss relief. Fairness and justice dictate that back wages be denied
respondents-union members from employment on the ground the employees who participated in the illegal concerted
that they committed illegal acts during the strike. activities to the great detriment of the employer. 41
Dismissed respondents-union Nevertheless, separation pay is made an alternative
members are not entitled to relief in lieu of reinstatement in certain circumstances, like: (a)
back wages. when reinstatement can no longer be effected in view of the
passage of a long period of time or because of the realities of
While it is true that the award of back wages is a legal
the situation; (b) reinstatement is inimical to the employer's
consequence of a finding of illegal dismissal, in G & S Transport
interest; (c) reinstatement is no longer feasible; (d)
Corporation v. Infante, 39 the Court pronounced that the
reinstatement does not serve the best interests of the parties
dismissed workers are entitled only to reinstatement
involved; (e) the employer is prejudiced by the workers'
considering that they did not render work for the employer
continued employment; (f) facts that make execution unjust or
during the strike, viz.:
inequitable have supervened; or (g) strained relations between
With respect to back wages, the principle of a "fair the employer and employee. 42 cHECAS

day's wage for a fair day's labor" remains as the


basic factor in determining the award thereof. If Given the lapse of considerable time from the occurrence
there is no work performed by the employee there can of the strike, the Court rules that the award of separation pay of
be no wage or pay unless, of course, the laborer was one (1) month salary for each year of service, in lieu of
able, willing and ready to work but was illegally locked reinstatement, is in order. This relief strikes a balance between
out, suspended or dismissed or otherwise illegally the respondents-union members who may not have known that
they were participating in an illegal strike but who, nevertheless, DECISION
have rendered service to the company for years prior to the
illegal strike which caused a rift in their relations, and the
employer who definitely suffered losses on account of MENDOZA, J : p

respondents-union members' failure to report to work during the


The right to self-organization is not limited to unionism.
illegal strike.
Workers may also form or join an association for mutual aid and
WHEREFORE, the petition is PARTIALLY GRANTED. protection and for other legitimate purposes.TAIaHE

The 21 September 2010 Decision and 14 January 2011


This is a petition for review on certiorari seeking to
Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 102802
reverse and set aside the July 4, 2013 Decision 1 and the
are AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION in that petitioners are
January 28, 2014 Resolution 2 of the Court of Appeals(CA) in
hereby ORDERED to pay each of the above-named individual
CA-G.R. SP No. 123397, which reversed the November 28,
respondents, except union officers who are hereby declared
2011 Resolution 3 of the Bureau of Labor Relations (BLR) and
validly dismissed, separation pay equivalent to one (1) month
reinstated the April 20, 2010 Decision 4 of the Department of
salary for every year of service. Whatever sums already
Labor and Employment (DOLE) Regional Director, cancelling
received from petitioners under any release, waiver or quitclaim
the registration of Samahan ng Manggagawa
shall be deducted from the total separation pay due to each of
sa Hanjin Shipyard (Samahan) as a worker's association under
them.
Article 243 (now Article 249) of the Labor Code.
SO ORDERED.
The Facts
(Ergonomic Systems Philippines, Inc. v. Enaje, G.R. No. 195163,
|||

On February 16, 2010, Samahan, through its authorized


[December 13, 2017])
representative, Alfie F. Alipio, filed an application for
ABARIA TO WESLEYAN - PAGE 120 TO 125 registration 5 of its name "Samahan ng mga Manggagawa
sa Hanjin Shipyard" with the DOLE. Attached to the application
SAMAHAN NG MANGGAGAWA were the list of names of the association's officers and
SA HANJIN SHIPYARD rep. by its President, members, signatures of the attendees of the February 7, 2010
ALFIE ALIPIO, petitioner, vs. BUREAU OF meeting, copies of their Constitution and By-laws. The
LABOR RELATIONS, HANJIN HEAVY application stated that the association had a total of 120
INDUSTRIES AND CONSTRUCTION CO., LTD. members.
(HHIC-PHIL.), respondents. On February 26, 2010, the DOLE Regional Office No. 3,
City of San Fernando, Pampanga (DOLE-Pampanga), issued
the corresponding certificate of registration 6 in favor of The Ruling of the DOLE Regional Director
Samahan. On April 20, 2010, DOLE Regional Director Ernesto Bihis
On March 15, 2010, respondent Hanjin Heavy Industries ruled in favor of Hanjin. He found that the preamble, as stated
and Construction Co., Ltd. Philippines (Hanjin), with offices at in the Constitution and By-Laws of Samahan, was an admission
Greenbeach 1, Renondo Peninsula, Sitio Agustin, Barangay on its part that all of its members were employees of Hanjin, to
Cawag, Subic Bay Freeport Zone, filed a petition 7 with DOLE- wit:
Pampanga praying for the cancellation of registration of KAMI, ang mga Manggagawa
Samahan's association on the ground that its members did not sa HANJIN Shipyard (SAMAHAN) ay naglalayong na
fall under any of the types of workers enumerated in the second isulong ang pagpapabuti ng kondisyon sa paggawa at
sentence of Article 243 (now 249). cDHAES katiyakan sa hanapbuhay sa pamamagitan ng patuloy
Hanjin opined that only ambulant, intermittent, itinerant, na pagpapaunlad ng kasanayan ng para sa mga
kasapi nito. Naniniwala na sa pamamagitan ng aming
rural workers, self-employed, and those without definite
mga angking lakas, kaalaman at kasanayan ay aming
employers may form a workers' association. It further posited maitataguyod at makapag-aambag sa kaunlaran ng
that one third (1/3) of the members of the association had isang lipunan. Na mararating at makakamit ang antas
definite employers and the continued existence and registration ng pagkilala, pagdakila at pagpapahalaga sa mga tulad
of the association would prejudice the company's goodwill. naming mga manggagawa.
On March 18, 2010, Hanjin filed a supplemental xxx xxx xxx 10
petition, 8 adding the alternative ground that Samahan
The same claim was made by Samahan in its motion to
committed a misrepresentation in connection with the list of
dismiss, but it failed to adduce evidence that the remaining 63
members and/or voters who took part in the ratification of their
members were also employees of Hanjin. Its admission
constitution and by-laws in its application for
bolstered Hanjin's claim that Samahan committed
registration. Hanjin claimed that Samahan made it appear that
misrepresentation in its application for registration as it made
its members were all qualified to become members of the
an express representation that all of its members were
workers' association.
employees of the former. Having a definite employer, these 57
On March 26, 2010, DOLE-Pampanga called for a members should have formed a labor union for collective
conference, wherein Samahan requested for a 10-day period to bargaining. 11 The dispositive portion of the decision of the Dole
file a responsive pleading. No pleading, however, was Regional Director, reads: ASEcHI

submitted. Instead, Samahan filed a motion to dismiss on April WHEREFORE, premises considered, the
14, 2010. 9 petition is hereby GRANTED. Consequently, the
Certificate of Registration as Legitimate Workers stated that the law clearly afforded the right to self-organization
Association (LWA) issued to the SAMAHAN NG MGA to all workers including those without definite employers. 16 As
MANGGAGAWA SA HANJIN SHIPYARD an expression of the right to self-organization, industrial,
(SAMAHAN) with Registration Numbers RO300-1002- commercial and self-employed workers could form a workers'
WA-009 dated February 26, 2010 is hereby association if they so desired but subject to the limitation that it
CANCELLED, and said association is dropped from
was only for mutual aid and protection. 17 Nowhere could it be
the roster of labor organizations of this Office.
found that to form a workers' association was prohibited or that
SO DECIDED. 12 the exercise of a workers' right to self-organization was limited
The Ruling of the Bureau of Labor Relations to collective bargaining. 18ITAaHc

Aggrieved, Samahan filed an appeal 13 before the BLR, The BLR was of the opinion that there was no
arguing that Hanjin had no right to petition for the cancellation misrepresentation on the part of Samahan. The phrase, "KAMI,
of its registration. Samahan pointed out that the words ang mga Manggagawa sa Hanjin Shipyard," if translated,
"Hanjin Shipyard," as used in its application for registration, would be: "We, the workers at Hanjin Shipyard." The use of the
referred to a workplace and not as employer or company. It preposition "at" instead of "of" would indicate that
explained that when a shipyard was put up in Subic, Zambales, "Hanjin Shipyard" was intended to describe a
it became known as Hanjin Shipyard. Further, the remaining 63 place. 19 Should Hanjin feel that the use of its name had
members signed the Sama-Samang Pagpapatunay which affected the goodwill of the company, the remedy was not to
stated that they were either working or had worked at Hanjin. seek the cancellation of the association's registration. At most,
Thus, the alleged misrepresentation committed by Samahan the use by Samahan of the name "Hanjin Shipyard" would only
had no leg to stand on. 14 warrant a change in the name of the association. 20 Thus, the
dispositive portion of the BLR decision reads:
In its Comment to the Appeal, 15 Hanjin averred that it
was a party-in-interest. It reiterated that Samahan committed WHEREFORE, the appeal is hereby
misrepresentation in its application for registration before DOLE GRANTED. The Order of DOLE Region III Director
Ernesto C. Bihis dated 20 April 2010 is REVERSED
Pampanga. While Samahan insisted that the remaining 63
and SET ASIDE.
members were either working, or had at least worked in Hanjin,
only 10 attested to such fact, thus, leaving its 53 members Accordingly, Samahan ng mga Manggagawa
without any workplace to claim. sa Hanjin Shipyard shall remain in the roster of
legitimate workers' association. 21
On September 6, 2010, the BLR granted Samahan's
appeal and reversed the ruling of the Regional Director. It On October 14, 2010, Hanjin filed its motion for
reconsideration. 22
In its Resolution, 23 dated November 28, 2011, the BLR On December 12, 2012, Hanjin filed its comment on the
affirmed its September 6, 2010 Decision, but directed Samahan petition, 30 arguing that to require Samahan to change its name
to remove the words "Hanjin Shipyard" from its name. The BLR was not tantamount to interfering with the workers' right to self-
explained that the Labor Code had no provision on the use of organization. 31 Thus, it prayed, among others, for the dismissal
trade or business name in the naming of a worker's association, of the petition for Samahan's failure to file the required motion
such matters being governed by the Corporation Code. for reconsideration. 32
According to the BLR, the most equitable relief that would strike On January 17, 2013, Samahan filed its reply. 33
a balance between the contending interests of Samahan
andHanjin was to direct Samahan to drop the name On March 22, 2013, Hanjin filed its memorandum. 34
"Hanjin Shipyard" without delisting it from the roster of The Ruling of the Court of Appeals
legitimate labor organizations. The fallo reads:
On July 4, 2013, the CA rendered its decision, holding
WHEREFORE, premises considered, our that the registration of Samahan as a legitimate workers'
Decision dated 6 September 2010 is hereby association was contrary to the provisions of Article 243 of
AFFIRMED with a DIRECTIVE for SAMAHAN to
the Labor Code. 35 It stressed that only 57 out of the 120
remove "HANJIN SHIPYARD" from its name.
members were actually working in Hanjin while the phrase in
SO RESOLVED. 24 the preamble of Samahan's Constitution and By-laws, "KAMI,
Unsatisfied, Samahan filed a petition ang mga Manggagawa sa Hanjin Shipyard," created an
for certiorari 25 under Rule 65 before the CA, docketed as CA- impression that all its members were employees of HHIC. Such
G.R. SP No. 123397. CHTAIc
unqualified manifestation which was used in its application for
registration, was a clear proof of misrepresentation which
In its March 21, 2012 Resolution, 26 the CA dismissed the warranted the cancellation of Samahan's registration. EATCcI

petition because of Samahan's failure to file a motion for


reconsideration of the assailed November 28, 2011 Resolution. It also stated that the members of Samahan could not
register it as a legitimate worker's association because the
On April 17, 2012, Samahan filed its motion for place where Hanjin's industry was located was not a rural area.
reconsideration 27 and on July 18, 2012, Hanjin filed its Neither was there any evidence to show that the members of
comment 28 to oppose the same. On October 22, 2012, the CA the association were ambulant, intermittent or itinerant
issued a resolution granting Samahan's motion for workers. 36
reconsideration and reinstating the petition. Hanjin was
directed to file a comment five (5) days from receipt of notice. 29 At any rate, the CA was of the view that dropping the
words "Hanjin Shipyard" from the association name would not
prejudice or impair its right to self-organization because it could for the purpose of collective bargaining, it does not prohibit
adopt other appropriate names. The dispositive portion reads: them from forming a labor organization simply for purposes of
WHEREFORE, the petition is DISMISSED and mutual aid and protection. All members of Samahan have one
the BLR's directive, ordering that the words common place of work, Hanjin Shipyard. Thus, there is no
"Hanjin Shipyard" be removed from petitioner reason why they cannot use "Hanjin Shipyard" in their
association's name, is AFFIRMED. The Decision dated name. 39 DHITCc

April 20, 2010 of the DOLE Regional Director in Case Hanjin counters that Samahan failed to adduce sufficient
No. RO300-1003-CP-001, which ordered the
basis that all its members were employees of Hanjin or its
cancellation of petitioner association's registration is
REINSTATED. legitimate contractors, and that the use of the name
"Hanjin Shipyard" would create an impression that all its
SO ORDERED. 37 members were employees of HHIC. 40
Hence, this petition, raising the following: Samahan reiterates its stand that workers with a definite
ISSUES employer can organize any association for purposes of mutual
I. THE COURT OF APPEALS SERIOUSLY ERRED IN aid and protection. Inherent in the workers' right to self-
FINDING THAT SAMAHAN CANNOT FORM A organization is its right to name its own organization. Samahan
WORKERS' ASSOCIATION OF EMPLOYEES referred "Hanjin Shipyard" as their common place of work.
IN HANJIN AND INSTEAD SHOULD HAVE Therefore, they may adopt the same in their association's
FORMED A UNION, HENCE THEIR name. 41
REGISTRATION AS A WORKERS'
The Court's Ruling
ASSOCIATION SHOULD BE CANCELLED.
II. THE COURT OF APPEALS SERIOUSLY ERRED IN The petition is partly meritorious.
ORDERING THE REMOVAL/DELETION OF Right to self-organization includes
THE WORD "HANJIN" IN THE NAME OF THE right to form a union, workers '
UNION BY REASON OF THE COMPANY'S association and labor management
PROPERTY RIGHT OVER THE COMPANY councils
NAME "HANJIN." 38
More often than not, the right to self-organization
Samahan argues that the right to form a workers' connotes unionism. Workers, however, can also form and join
association is not exclusive to intermittent, ambulant and a workers' association as well as labor-management councils
itinerant workers. While the Labor Code allows the workers "to (LMC). Expressed in the highest law of the land is the right of
form, join or assist labor organizations of their own choosing"
all workers to self-organization. Section 3, Article XIII of labor organizations for the purpose of collective bargaining
the 1987 Constitution states: through representatives of their own choosing and to engage in
Section 3. The State shall afford full protection to lawful concerted activities for the same purpose for their mutual
labor, local and overseas, organized and unorganized, aid and protection. This is in line with the policy of the State to
and promote full employment and equality of foster the free and voluntary organization of a strong and united
employment opportunities for all. It shall guarantee labor movement as well as to make sure that workers
the rights of all workers to self-organization, participate in policy and decision-making processes affecting
collective bargaining and negotiations, and peaceful their rights, duties and welfare. 42
concerted activities, including the right to strike in
accordance with law. . . .cEaSHC
The right to form a union or association or to self-
organization comprehends two notions, to wit: (a) the liberty or
[Emphasis Supplied] freedom, that is, the absence of restraint which guarantees that
And Section 8, Article III of the 1987 Constitution also the employee may act for himself without being prevented by
states: law; and (b) the power, by virtue of which an employee may, as
he pleases, join or refrain from joining an association. 43
Section 8. The right of the people, including those
employed in the public and private sectors, to form In view of the revered right of every worker to self-
unions, associations, or societies for purposes not organization, the law expressly allows and even encourages
contrary to law shall not be abridged. the formation of labor organizations. A labor organization is
In relation thereto, Article 3 of the Labor Code provides: defined as "any union or association of employees which exists
in whole or in part for the purpose of collective bargaining or of
Article 3. Declaration of basic policy. The State shall
dealing with employers concerning terms and conditions of
afford protection to labor, promote full employment,
ensure equal work opportunities regardless of sex, employment." 44 A labor organization has two broad rights: (1)
race or creed and regulate the relations between to bargain collectively and (2) to deal with the employer
workers and employers. The State shall assure the concerning terms and conditions of employment. To bargain
rights of workers to self-organization, collective collectively is a right given to a union once it registers itself with
bargaining, security of tenure, and just and the DOLE. Dealing with the employer, on the other hand, is a
humane conditions of work. generic description of interaction between employer and
[Emphasis Supplied] employees concerning grievances, wages, work hours and
other terms and conditions of employment, even if the
As Article 246 (now 252) of the Labor Code provides, the employees' group is not registered with the DOLE. 45 CTIEac

right to self-organization includes the right to form, join or assist


A union refers to any labor organization in the private and welfare. For this purpose, workers and employers may form
sector organized for collective bargaining and for other LMCs.
legitimate purpose, 46 while a workers' association is an A cursory reading of the law demonstrates that a
organization of workers formed for the mutual aid and common element between unionism and the formation of LMCs
protection of its members or for any legitimate purpose other is the existence of an employer-employee relationship. Where
than collective bargaining. 47 neither party is an employer nor an employee of the other, no
Many associations or groups of employees, or even duty to bargain collectively would exist. 52 In the same manner,
combinations of only several persons, may qualify as a labor expressed in Article 255 (now 261) is the requirement that such
organization yet fall short of constituting a labor union. While workers be employed in the establishment before they can
every labor union is a labor organization, not every labor participate in policy and decision making processes.
organization is a labor union. The difference is one of In contrast, the existence of employer-employee
organization, composition and operation. 48 relationship is not mandatory in the formation of workers'
Collective bargaining is just one of the forms of employee association. What the law simply requires is that the members
participation. Despite so much interest in and the promotion of of the workers' association, at the very least, share the same
collective bargaining, it is incorrect to say that it is the device interest. The very definition of a workers' association speaks of
and no other, which secures industrial democracy. It is equally "mutual aid and protection."
misleading to say that collective bargaining is the end-goal of Right to choose whether to form or
employee representation. Rather, the real aim is employee join a union or workers' association
participation in whatever form it may appear, bargaining or no belongs to workers themselves SaCIDT

bargaining, union or no union. 49 Any labor organization which


may or may not be a union may deal with the employer. This In the case at bench, the Court cannot sanction the
explains why a workers' association or organization does not opinion of the CA that Samahan should have formed a union
always have to be a labor union and why employer-employee for purposes of collective bargaining instead of a workers'
collective interactions are not always collective bargaining. 50 association because the choice belonged to it. The right to form
or join a labor organization necessarily includes the right to
To further strengthen employee participation, Article 255 refuse or refrain from exercising the said right. It is self-evident
(now 261) 51 of the Labor Code mandates that workers shall that just as no one should be denied the exercise of a right
have the right to participate in policy and decision-making granted by law, so also, no one should be compelled to exercise
processes of the establishment where they are employed such a conferred right. 53 Also inherent in the right to self-
insofar as said processes will directly affect their rights, benefits organization is the right to choose whether to form a union for
purposes of collective bargaining or a workers' association for itinerant workers, self-employed people, rural
purposes of providing mutual aid and protection. workers and those without any definite employers
may form labor organizations for their mutual aid
The right to self-organization, however, is subject to and protection. (As amended by Batas Pambansa
certain limitations as provided by law. For instance, the Labor Bilang 70, May 1, 1980)
Code specifically disallows managerial employees from joining,
[Emphasis Supplied]
assisting or forming any labor union. Meanwhile, supervisory
employees, while eligible for membership in labor Further, Article 243 should be read together with Rule 2
organizations, are proscribed from joining the collective of Department Order (D.O.) No. 40-03, Series of 2003, which
bargaining unit of the rank and file employees. 54 Even provides:
government employees have the right to self-organization. It is RULE II
not, however, regarded as existing or available for purposes of
collective bargaining, but simply for the furtherance and COVERAGE OF THE RIGHT TO SELF-ORGANIZATION
protection of their interests. 55 Section 1. Policy. — It is the policy of the State
to promote the free and responsible exercise of the
Hanjin posits that the members of Samahan have definite
right to self-organization through the establishment of
employers, hence, they should have formed a union instead of
a simplified mechanism for the speedy registration of
a workers' association. The Court disagrees. There is no labor unions and workers associations, determination
provision in the Labor Code that states that employees with of representation status and resolution of inter/intra-
definite employers may form, join or assist unions only. union and other related labor relations disputes. Only
The Court cannot subscribe either to Hanjin's position legitimate or registered labor unions shall have the
that Samahan's members cannot form the association because right to represent their members for collective
bargaining and other purposes. Workers' associations
they are not covered by the second sentence of Article 243
shall have the right to represent their members for
(now 249), to wit: cHECAS
purposes other than collective bargaining.
Article 243. Coverage and employees' right to
Section 2. Who may join labor unions and
self-organization. All persons employed in commercial,
workers' associations. — All persons employed in
industrial and agricultural enterprises and in religious,
commercial, industrial and agricultural enterprises,
charitable, medical, or educational institutions, whether
including employees of government owned or
operating for profit or not, shall have the right to self-
controlled corporations without original charters
organization and to form, join, or assist labor
established under the Corporation Code, as well as
organizations of their own choosing for purposes of
employees of religious, charitable, medical or
collective bargaining. Ambulant, intermittent and
educational institutions whether operating for profit or workers who can form or join a workers' association. Thus, the
not, shall have the right to self-organization and to Court agrees with Samahan's argument that the right to form a
form, join or assist labor unions for purposes of workers' association is not exclusive to ambulant, intermittent
collective bargaining: provided, however, that and itinerant workers. The option to form or join a union or a
supervisory employees shall not be eligible for workers' association lies with the workers themselves, and
membership in a labor union of the rank-and-file
whether they have definite employers or not.
employees but may form, join or assist separate labor
unions of their own. Managerial employees shall not be No misrepresentation on the part
eligible to form, join or assist any labor unions for of Samahan to warrant cancellation
purposes of collective bargaining. Alien employees of registration
with valid working permits issued by the Department
may exercise the right to self-organization and join or In this case, Samahan's registration was cancelled not
assist labor unions for purposes of collective because its members were prohibited from forming a workers'
bargaining if they are nationals of a country which association but because they allegedly committed
grants the same or similar rights to Filipino workers, as misrepresentation for using the phrase, "KAMI, ang mga
certified by the Department of Foreign Affairs. AHDacC Manggagawa sa HANJIN Shipyard."
For purposes of this section, any employee, Misrepresentation, as a ground for the cancellation of
whether employed for a definite period or not, shall registration of a labor organization, is committed "in connection
beginning on the first day of his/her service, be eligible with the adoption, or ratification of the constitution and by-laws
for membership in any labor organization. or amendments thereto, the minutes of ratification, the list of
All other workers, including ambulant, members who took part in the ratification of the constitution and
intermittent and other workers, the self-employed, rural by-laws or amendments thereto, and those in connection with
workers and those without any definite employers may the election of officers, minutes of the election of officers, and
form labor organizations for their mutual aid and the list of voters, . . . ." 56
protection and other legitimate purposes except
collective bargaining. In Takata Corporation v. Bureau of Relations, 57 the
DOLE Regional Director granted the petition for the cancellation
[Emphases Supplied]
of certificate of registration of Samahang Lakas Manggagawa
Clearly, there is nothing in the foregoing implementing sa Takata (Salamat) after finding that the employees who
rules which provides that workers, with definite employers, attended the organizational meeting fell short of the 20% union
cannot form or join a workers' association for mutual aid and registration requirement. The BLR, however, reversed the
protection. Section 2 thereof even broadens the coverage of ruling of the DOLE Regional Director, stating that petitioner
Takata Corporation (Takata) failed to prove deliberate and [Emphases Supplied]
malicious misrepresentation on the part of respondent Salamat. Based on the foregoing, the Court concludes that
Although Takata claimed that in the list of members, there was misrepresentation, to be a ground for the cancellation of the
an employee whose name appeared twice and another was certificate of registration, must be done maliciously and
merely a project employee, such facts were not considered deliberately. Further, the mistakes appearing in the application
misrepresentations in the absence of showing that the or attachments must be grave or refer to significant matters.
respondent deliberately did so for the purpose of increasing The details as to how the alleged fraud was committed must
their union membership. The Court ruled in favor of Salamat. IDSEAH
also be indubitably shown.
In S.S. Ventures International v. S.S. Ventures Labor The records of this case reveal no deliberate or malicious
Union, 58 the petition for cancellation of certificate of registration intent to commit misrepresentation on the part of Samahan. The
was denied. The Court wrote: use of such words "KAMI, ang mga Manggagawa
If the union's application is infected by sa HANJIN Shipyard" in the preamble of the constitution and
falsification and like serious irregularities, by-laws did not constitute misrepresentation so as to warrant
especially those appearing on the face of the the cancellation of Samahan's certificate of
application and its attachments, a union should be registration. Hanjin failed to indicate how this phrase
denied recognition as a legitimate labor constitutes a malicious and deliberate misrepresentation.
organization. Prescinding from these considerations, Neither was there any showing that the alleged
the issuance to the Union of Certificate of Registration
misrepresentation was serious in character. Misrepresentation
No. RO300-00-02-UR-0003 necessarily implies that its
application for registration and the supporting is a devious charge that cannot simply be entertained by mere
documents thereof are prima facie free from any surmises and conjectures.
vitiating irregularities. Another factor which militates Even granting arguendo that Samahan's members
against the veracity of the allegations in misrepresented themselves as employees or workers
the Sinumpaang Petisyon is the lack of particularities of Hanjin, said misrepresentation does not relate to the
on how, when and where respondent union adoption or ratification of its constitution and by-laws or to the
perpetrated the alleged fraud on each member.
election of its officers.
aCIHcD
Such details are crucial for in the proceedings for
cancellation of union registration on the ground of Removal of the word "Hanjin Shipyard"
fraud or misrepresentation, what needs to be from the association's name, however,
established is that the specific act or omission of the does not infringe on Samahan's right to
union deprived the complaining employees-members self-organization
of their right to choose.
Nevertheless, the Court agrees with the BLR that The policy underlying the prohibition in Section 18
"Hanjin Shipyard" must be removed in the name of the against the registration of a corporate name which is "identical
association. A legitimate workers' association refers to an or deceptively or confusingly similar" to that of any existing
association of workers organized for mutual aid and protection corporation or which is "patently deceptive" or "patently
of its members or for any legitimate purpose other than confusing" or "contrary to existing laws," is the avoidance of
collective bargaining registered with the DOLE.59 Having been fraud upon the public which would have occasion to deal with
granted a certificate of registration, Samahan's association is the entity concerned, the evasion of legal obligations and
now recognized by law as a legitimate workers' association. duties, and the reduction of difficulties of administration and
According to Samahan, inherent in the workers' right to supervision over corporations. 60
self-organization is its right to name its own organization. It For the same reason, it would be misleading for the
seems to equate the dropping of words "Hanjin Shipyard" from members of Samahan to use "Hanjin Shipyard" in its name as
its name as a restraint in its exercise of the right to self- it could give the wrong impression that all of its members are
organization. Hanjin, on the other hand, invokes that employed by Hanjin.
"Hanjin Shipyard" is a registered trade name and, thus, it is Further, Section 9, Rule IV of D.O. No. 40-03, Series of
within their right to prohibit its use. 2003 explicitly states:
As there is no provision under our labor laws which speak The change of name of a labor organization
of the use of name by a workers' association, the Court refers shall not affect its legal personality. All the rights and
to the Corporation Code, which governs the names of juridical obligations of a labor organization under its old name
persons. Section 18 thereof provides: shall continue to be exercised by the labor organization
No corporate name may be allowed by the under its new name.
Securities and Exchange Commission if the proposed Thus, in the directive of the BLR removing the words
name is identical or deceptively or confusingly "Hanjin Shipyard," no abridgement of Samahan's right to self-
similar to that of any existing corporation or to any organization was committed.
other name already protected by law or is patently
deceptive, confusing or contrary to existing laws. When WHEREFORE, the petition is PARTIALLY GRANTED.
a change in the corporate name is approved, the The July 4, 2013 Decision and the January 28, 2014 Resolution
Commission shall issue an amended certificate of of the Court of Appeals are hereby REVERSEDand SET
incorporation under the amended name. ScHADI ASIDE. The September 6, 2010 Resolution of the Bureau of
[Emphases Supplied] Labor Relations, as modified by its November 28, 2011
Resolution, is REINSTATED. aICcHA
SO ORDERED. ManagementFaculty Association (AFA) is a labor organization
(Samahan ng Manggagawa sa Hanjin Shipyard v. Bureau of
|||
composed of members of the AIM faculty, duly registered under
Certificate of Registration No. NCR-UR-12-4076-2004.
Labor Relations, G.R. No. 211145, [October 14, 2015])
On May 16, 2007, respondent filed a petition for
SAMAHANG MANGGAGAWA V. CHARTER CHEMICAL- PAGE 26 certification election 6 seeking to represent a bargaining unit
CATHAY- PAGE 125 in AIM consisting of forty (40) faculty members. The case
was docketed as DOLE Case No. NCR-OD-M-0705-
ASIAN INSTITUTE OF 007.Petitioner opposed the petition, claiming that respondent's
MANAGEMENT, petitioner, vs. ASIAN INSTITUTE members are neither rank-and-file nor supervisory, but rather,
OF managerial employees. 7
MANAGEMENT FACULTY ASSOCIATION, respo On July 11, 2007, petitioner filed a petition for
ndent. cancellation of respondent's certificate of registration 8 —
docketed as DOLE Case No. NCR-OD-0707-001-LRD — on
the grounds of misrepresentation in registration and that
DECISION respondent is composed of managerial employees who are
prohibited from organizing as a union.
On August 30, 2007, the Med-Arbiter in DOLE Case No.
DEL CASTILLO, J : p NCR-OD-M-0705-007 issued an Order 9 denying the petition
for certification election on the ground that
This Petition for Review on Certiorari 1 assails the AIM's faculty members are managerial employees. This Order
January 8, 2013 Decision 2 of the Court of Appeals (CA) which was appealed by respondent before the Secretary of the
dismissed the Petition for Certiorari 3 in CA-G.R. SP No. Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE),10who reversed
114122, and its subsequent June 27, 2013 the same via a February 20, 2009 Decision 11 and May 4, 2009
Resolution 4 denying herein petitioner's Motion for Resolution, 12 decreeing thus:
Reconsideration. 5
WHEREFORE, the appeal filed by the Asian
Factual Antecedents Institute of Management Faculty Association (AIMFA)
Petitioner Asian Institute of Management (AIM) is a duly is GRANTED. The Order dated 30 August 2007 of
DOLE-NCR Mediator-Arbiter Michael T. Parado is
registered non-stock, non-profit educational institution.
hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE.
Respondent Asian Institute of
Accordingly, let the entire records of the case be OD-M-0705-007, or respondent's petition for certification
remanded to DOLE-NCR for the conduct of a election. Docketed as CA-G.R. SP No. 109487, the petition is
certification election among the faculty members of the based on the arguments that 1) the bargaining unit within AIM
Asian Institute of Management (AIM),with the following sought to be represented is composed of managerial
choices: employees who are not eligible to join, assist, or form any labor
1. ASIAN INSTITUTE OF organization, and 2) respondent is not a legitimate labor
MANAGEMENT FACULTY ASSOCIATIO organization that may conduct a certification election.
N (AIMFA);and
On October 22, 2010, the CA rendered its
2. No Union. Decision 19 containing the following pronouncement: CAIHTE

SO ORDERED. 13 AIM insists that the members of its tenure-


Meanwhile, in DOLE Case No. NCR-OD-0707-001-LRD, track faculty are managerial employees, and therefore,
an Order 14 dated February 16, 2009 was issued by DOLE- ineligible to join, assist or form a labor organization. It
NCR Regional Director Raymundo G. Agravante granting AIM's ascribes gave abuse of discretion on SOLE 20 for its
rash conclusion that the members of said tenure-
petition for cancellation of respondent's certificate of
track faculty are not managerial employees solely
registration and ordering its delisting from the roster of
because the faculty's actions are still subject to
legitimate labor organizations. This Order was appealed by evaluation, review or final approval by the board of
respondent before the Bureau of Labor trustees ("BOT").AIM argues that the BOT does not
Relations 15 (BLR),which, in a December 29, 2009 manage the day-to-day affairs, nor the making and
Decision, 16 reversed the same and ordered respondent's implementing of policies of the Institute, as such
retention in the roster of legitimate labor organizations. The functions are vested with the tenure-track faculty.
BLR held that the grounds relied upon in the petition for We agree.
cancellation are not among the grounds authorized under
Article 239 of the Labor Code, 17 and that respondent's Article 212(m) of the Labor Code defines
members are not managerial employees. Petitioner moved to managerial employees as:
reconsider, but was rebuffed in a March 18, 2010 Resolution. 18 'ART. 212. Definitions. — x x x
CA-G.R. SP No. 109487 and G.R. No. 197089 (m) 'Managerial employee' is
one who is vested with powers or
Petitioner filed a Petition for Certiorari before the CA, prerogatives to lay down and execute
questioning the DOLE Secretary's February 20, 2009 Decision management policies and/or to hire,
and May 4, 2009 Resolution relative to DOLE Case No. NCR- transfer, suspend, lay-off, recall,
discharge, assign or discipline managerial employee is already different from a
employees. Supervisory employees are supervisory employee.x x x aScITE

those who, in the interest of the xxx xxx xxx


employer, effectively recommend such
managerial actions if the exercise of such In further opining that a managerial employee
authority is not merely routinary or is one whose 'authority is not merely routinary or
clerical in nature but requires the use of clerical in nature but requires the use of
independent judgment. All employees independent judgment,' a description which fits now
not falling within any of the above a supervisory employee under Section 1(t),Rule I,
definitions are considered rank-and-file Book V of the Omnibus Rules Implementing the Labor
employees for purposes of this Book.' Code, it then follows that the SOLE was not aware of
the change in the law and thus gravely abused its
There are, therefore, two (2) kinds of managerial discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction in
employees under Art. 212(m) of the Labor Code. concluding that AIM's 'tenure-
Those who 'lay down x x x management policies,' such track'faculty are not managerial employees.
as the Board of Trustees, and those who 'execute
management policies and/or hire, transfer, suspend, SOLE further committed grave abuse of
lay-off, recall, discharge, assign or discipline discretion when it concluded that said tenure-
employees.' track faculty members are not managerial employees
on the basis of a 'footnote' in AIM's Policy Manual,
xxx xxx xxx which provides that 'the policy[-]making authority of
On its face, the SOLE's opinion is already the faculty members is merely recommendatory in
erroneous because in claiming that the 'test of nature considering that the faculty standards they
'supervisory' or 'managerial status' depends on formulate are still subject to evaluation, review or
whether a person possesses authority to act in the final approval by the [AIM]'s Board of Trustees.' x x
interest of his employer in the matter specified in Article x
212(m) of the Labor Code and Section 1(m) of its xxx xxx xxx
Implementing Rules,' he obviously was referring to
the old definition of a managerial employee.Such is Clearly, AIM's tenure-track faculty do not merely
evident in his use of 'supervisory or managerial status,' recommend faculty standards. They 'determine
and reference to 'Section 1(m)of its Implementing all faculty standards,' and are thus managerial
Rules.' For presently, as aforequoted in Article 212(m) employees. The standards' being subjected to the
of the Labor Code and as amended by Republic Act approval of the Board of Trustees would not make
6715 which took effect on March 21, 1989, a ATM's tenure-track faculty non-managerial because as
earlier mentioned, managerial employees are now of WHEREFORE,the instant petition
two categories: (1) those who 'lay down policies,' such is GRANTED.The assailed Decision dated February
as the members of the Board of Trustees, and (2) those 20, 2009 and Resolution dated May 4, 2009 are
who 'executemanagement policies (etc.),' such as hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE.The Order dated
AIM's tenure-track faculty. August 30, 2007 of Mediator-Arbiter Parado is
hereby REINSTATED.
xxx xxx xxx
SO ORDERED.21 (Emphasis in the original)
It was also grave abuse of discretion on the part
of the SOLE when he opined that AIM's tenure- Respondent sought reconsideration, but was denied. It
track faculty members are not managerial thus instituted a Petition for Review on Certiorari before this
employees, relying on an impression that they were Court on July 4, 2011. The Petition, docketed as G.R. No.
subjected to rigid observance of regular hours of work 197089, remains pending to date.
as professors. x x x
The Assailed Ruling of the Court of Appeals
xxx xxx xxx
Meanwhile, relative to DOLE Case No. NCR-OD-0707-
More importantly, it behooves the SOLE to
deny AFA's appeal in light of the February 16, 2009 001-LRD or petitioner AIM's petition for cancellation of
Order of Regional Director Agravante delisting respondent's certificate of registration, petitioner filed on May
AFA from the roster of legitimate labor 24, 2010 a Petition for Certiorari 22 before the CA, questioning
organizations.For, only legitimate labor the BLR's December 29, 2009 decision and March 18, 2010
organizations are given the right to be certified as resolution. The petition, docketed as CA-G.R. SP No. 114122,
sole and exclusive bargaining agent in an alleged that the BLR committed grave abuse of discretion in
establishment. granting respondent's appeal and affirming its certificate of
xxx xxx xxx registration notwithstanding that its members are managerial
employees who may not join, assist, or form a labor union or
Here, the SOLE committed gave abuse of
organization.
discretion by giving due course to AFA's petition for
certification election, despite the fact that: (1) AFA's On January 8, 2013, the CA rendered the assailed
members are managerial employees; and (2) AFA is Decision, stating as follows:
not a legitimate labor organization. These facts
The petition lacks merit.
rendered AFA ineligible, and without any right to file a
petition for certification election, the object of which is xxx xxx xxx
to determine the sole and exclusive bargaining
representative of qualified AIM employees.
It is therefore incumbent upon the Institute to shown that there was misrepresentation,
prove that the BLR committed grave abuse of false statement or fraud in connection
discretion in issuing the questioned Decision. Towards with the adoption or ratification of
this end, AIM must lay the basis by showing that any of the constitution and by-laws or
the grounds provided under Article 239 of the Labor amendments thereto; the minutes of
Code, exists, to wit: ratification; or, in connection with the
election of officers, the minutes of the
Article 239. Grounds for
election of officers, the list of voters, or
cancellation of union registration. — The
failure to submit these documents
following may constitute grounds for
together with the list of the newly elected-
cancellation of union registration:
appointed officers and their postal
(a) Misrepresentation, false addresses to the BLR.
statement or fraud in connection with the
The bare fact that two signatures
adoption or ratification of
appeared twice on the list of those who
the constitution and by-laws or
participated in the organizational meeting
amendments thereto, the minutes of
would not, to our mind, provide a valid
ratification, and the list of members who
reason to cancel respondent's certificate
took part in the ratification;
of registration. The cancellation of a
(b) Misrepresentation, false union's registration doubtless has an
statements or fraud in connection with impairing dimension on the right of labor
the election of officers, minutes of the to self-organization. For fraud and
election of officers, and the list of voters; misrepresentation to be grounds for
(c) Voluntary dissolution by the cancellation of union registration under
members. HEITAD
the Labor Code, the nature of the fraud
and misrepresentation must be grave
Article 238 of the Labor Code provides that the and compelling enough to vitiate the
enumeration of the grounds for cancellation of union consent of a majority of union
registration, is exclusive;in other words, no other members. 23
grounds for cancellation is acceptable, except for the
three (3) grounds stated in Article 239. The scope of In this regard, it has also been held that:
the grounds for cancellation has been explained — Another factor which militates
For the purpose of de-certifying a against the veracity of the allegations in
union such as respondent, it must be the Sinumpaang Petisyon is the lack of
particularities on how, when and where is not the instant Petition, but to question the status of
respondent union perpetrated the the individual union members of the AFA in the
alleged fraud on each member. Such inclusion/exclusion proceedings pursuant to Article
details are crucial for, in the proceedings 245-A of the Labor Code, which reads:
for cancellation of union registration on Article 245-A. Effect of inclusion
the ground of fraud or misrepresentation, as members of employees outside the
what needs to be established is that the bargaining unit. — The inclusion as union
specific act or omission of the union members of employees outside the
deprived the complaining employees- bargaining unit shall not be a ground for
members of their right to choose. 24 the cancellation of the registration of the
A cursory reading of the Petition shows that AIM union. Said employees are automatically
did NOT allege any specific act of fraud or deemed removed from the list of
misrepresentation committed by AFA. What is clear is membership of said union.
that the Institute seeks the cancellation of the Petitioner insists that Article 245-A is not
registration of AFA based on Article 245 of the Labor applicable to this case as all AFA members are
Code on the ineligibility of managerial employees to managerial employees. We are not persuaded.
form or join labor unions. Unfortunately for the
petitioner, even assuming that there is a violation of The determination of whether any or all of the
Article 245, such violation will not result in the members of AFA should be considered as managerial
cancellation of the certificate of registration of a labor employees is better left to the DOLE because,
organization. It has also been established that
It should be stressed that a Decision had in the determination of whether or not
already been issued by the DOLE in the Certification certain employees are managerial
Election case; and the Decision ordered the conduct of employees, this Court accords due
a certification election among the faculty members of respect and therefore sustains the
the Institute, basing its directive on the finding that the findings of fact made by quasi-judicial
members of AFA were not managerial employees and agencies which are supported by
are therefore eligible to form, assist and join a labor substantial evidence considering their
union. As a matter of fact, the certification election had expertise in their respective fields. 25
already been held on October 16, 2009, albeit the From the discussion, it is manifestly clear that
results have not yet been resolved as the petitioner failed to prove that the BLR committed
inclusion/exclusion proceedings are still pending
before the DOLE. The remedy available to the Institute
grave abuse of discretion; consequently, the Petition cancellation of its certificate of registration; that precisely, the
must fail. finding in DOLE Case No. NCR-OD-M-0705-007, which the CA
WHEREFORE,the Petition is affirmed in CA-G.R. SP No. 109487, is that respondent's
hereby DENIED.The Decision and Resolution of public members are managerial employees; that respondent's
respondent Bureau of Labor Relations in BLR-A-C-19- declaration that its members are eligible to join, assist, or form
3-6-09 (NCR-OD-0707-001) are hereby AFFIRMED. a labor organization is an act of misrepresentation, given the
SO ORDERED.26 (Emphasis in the original) finding in CA-G.R. SP No. 109487 that they are managerial
employees; and that the grounds for cancellation of union
Petitioner filed its Motion for Reconsideration, which was registration enumerated in Article 239 of the Labor Code are
denied by the CA via its June 27, 2013 Resolution. Hence, the not exclusive. ATICcS

instant Petition.
Respondent's Arguments
In a November 10, 2014 Resolution, 27 the Court
resolved to give due course to the Petition. In its Comment, 29 respondent maintains that the CA was
right to treat petitioner's case for cancellation of its union
Issue registration with circumspection; that petitioner's ground for
Petitioner claims that the CA seriously erred in affirming filing the petition for cancellation is not recognized under Article
the dispositions of the BLR and thus validating the respondent's 239; that petitioner's accusation of misrepresentation is
certificate of registration notwithstanding the fact that its unsubstantiated, and is being raised for the first time at this
members are all managerial employees who are disqualified stage; that its members are not managerial employees; and that
from joining, assisting, or forming a labor organization. petitioner's opposition to respondent's attempts at self-
organization constitutes harassment, oppression, and violates
Petitioner's Arguments
the latter's rights under the Labor Code and the Constitution.
Praying that the assailed CA dispositions be set aside
Our Ruling
and that the DOLE-NCR Regional Director's February 16, 2009
Order granting AIM's petition for cancellation of respondent's In Holy Child Catholic School v. Hon. Sto. Tomas,30 this
certificate of registration and ordering its delisting from the Court declared that "[i]n case of alleged inclusion of disqualified
roster of legitimate labor organizations be reinstated instead, employees in a union, the proper procedure for an employer
petitioner maintains in its Petition and Reply 28 that like petitioner is to directly file a petition for cancellation of the
respondent's members are all managerial employees; that the union's certificate of registration due to misrepresentation, false
CA erred in declaring that even if respondent's members are all statement or fraud under the circumstances enumerated in
managerial employees, this alone is not a ground for Article 239 of the Labor Code, as amended."
On the basis of the ruling in the above-cited case, it can same point or question was in issue and adjudicated in
be said that petitioner was correct in filing a petition for the first suit. x x x Identity of cause of action is not
cancellation of respondent's certificate of registration. required, but merely identity of issues. 31 (Citation
Petitioner's sole ground for seeking cancellation of omitted)
respondent's certificate of registration — that its members are WHEREFORE,considering that the outcome of this case
managerial employees and for this reason, its registration is depends on the resolution of the issue relative to the nature of
thus a patent nullity for being an absolute violation of Article 245 respondent's membership pending in G.R. No. 197089, this
of the Labor Code which declares that managerial employees case is ordered CONSOLIDATED with G.R. No. 197089.
are ineligible to join any labor organization — is, in a sense, an
SO ORDERED.
accusation that respondent is guilty of misrepresentation for
registering under the claim that its members are not managerial (Asian Institute of Management v. Asian Institute of Management
|||

employees. Faculty Association, G.R. No. 207971, [January 23, 2017])


However, the issue of whether respondent's members GEN SANTOS COKE- PAGE 128
are managerial employees is still pending resolution by way of
petition for review on certiorari in G.R. No. 197089, which is the UST FACULTY- PAGE 129
culmination of all proceedings in DOLE Case No. NCR-OD-M-
0705-007 — where the issue relative to the nature of
respondent's membership was first raised by petitioner itself
and is there fiercely contested. The resolution of this issue
cannot be pre-empted; until it is determined with finality in G.R.
No. 197089, the petition for cancellation of respondent's
certificate of registration on the grounds alleged by petitioner
cannot be resolved. As a matter of courtesy and in order to
avoid conflicting decisions, We must await the resolution of the
petition in G.R. No. 197089.
x x x If a particular point or question is in issue in the
second action, and the judgment will depend on the
determination of that particular point or question, a
former judgment between the same parties or their
privies will be final and conclusive in the second if that