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Prof. Joselito Guianan Chan's The Labor Code of the Philippines, Annotated Labor Standards & Social Legislation Volume I of a 3-Volume Series 2019 Edition (3rd Revised Edition)
 

 
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UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

 
PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

   
February-1997 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 99039 February 3, 1997 - FORD PHIL., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 100748 February 3, 1997 - JOSE BARITUA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108547 February 3, 1997 - FELICIDAD VDA. DE CABRERA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 112761-65 February 3, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. PORFERIO M. PEPITO

  • G.R. No. 114183 February 3, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JESUS BORJA

  • G.R. No. 119310 February 3, 1997 - JULIETA V. ESGUERRA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119935 February 3, 1997 - UNITED SOUTH DOCKHANDLERS, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122156 February 3, 1997 - MANILA PRINCE HOTEL v. GSIS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123332 February 3, 1997 - AUGUSTO GATMAYTAN v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118915 February 4, 1997 - CAPITOL MEDICAL CENTER-ACE-UFSW v. BIENVENIDO LAGUESMA, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. P-94-1110 February 6, 1997 - MELENCIO S. SY v. CARMELITA S. MONGCUPA

  • Adm. Matter No. P-96-1203 February 6, 1997 - ERNESTO A. REYES v. NORBERTO R. ANOSA

  • G.R. No. 110668 February 6, 1997 ccc zz

    SMITH, BELL & CO., INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111682 February 6, 1997 - ZENAIDA REYES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117982 February 6, 1997 - COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118843 February 6, 1997 - ERIKS PTE. LTD. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 118950-54 February 6, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LUCRECIA GABRES

  • G.R. No. 119322 February 6, 1997 - COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 98252 February 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RENE JANUARIO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110391 February 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DOLORES DE LEON

  • G.R. No. 112191 February 7, 1997 - FORTUNE MOTORS (PHILS.) CORP., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 112714-15 February 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANTONIO SAGARAL

  • G.R. No. 117472 February 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LEO ECHEGARAY

  • G.R. No. 119657 February 7, 1997 - UNIMASTERS CONGLOMERATION, INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 119772-73 February 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NIGEL RICHARD GATWARD

  • G.R. No. 125249 February 7, 1997 - JIMMY S. DE CASTRO v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. P-95-1161 February 10, 1997 - JESUS N. BANDONG v. BELLA R. CHING

  • G.R. No. 108894 February 10, 1997 - TECNOGAS PHIL. MFG. CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109887 February 10, 1997 - CECILIA CARLOS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117702 February 10, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CRISPIN YPARRAGUIRRE

  • G.R. No. 124553 February 10, 1997 - ROSARIO R. TUASON v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. MTJ-95-1070 February 12, 1997 - MARIA APIAG, ET AL. v. ESMERALDO G. CANTERO

  • Adm. Matter No. P-87-100 February 12, 1997 - FELISA ELIC VDA. DE ABELLERA v. NEMESIO N. DALISAY

  • Adm. Matter No. P-96-1231 February 12, 1997 - ISAIAS P. DICDICAN v. RUSSO FERNAN, JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 68166 February 12, 1997 - HEIRS OF EMILIANO NAVARRO v. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 104666 February 12, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BIENVENIDO OMBROG

  • G.R. No. 115129 February 12, 1997 - IGNACIO BARZAGA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116511 February 12, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. COLOMA TABAG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118025 February 12, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. REBECCO SATOR

  • G.R. No. 120769 February 12, 1997 - STANLEY J. FORTICH v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 125531 February 12, 1997 - JOVAN LAND v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126013 February 12, 1997 - HEINZRICH THEIS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107554 February 13, 1997 - CEBU INT’L. FINANCE CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108763 February 13, 1997 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 112968 February 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ARSENIO LETIGIO

  • G.R. No. 114144 February 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FLORENTINO ABAD

  • G.R. Nos. 114711 & 115889 February 13, 1997 - GARMENTS and TEXTILE EXPORT BOARD v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122728 February 13, 1997 - CASIANO A. ANGCHANGCO v. OMBUDSMAN, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-96-217 February 17, 1997 - MANUEL F. CONCEPCION v. JESUS V. AGANA, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ 97-1369 February 17, 1997 - OCTAVIO DEL CALLAR v. IGNACIO L. SALVADOR, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 103501-03 & 103507 February 17, 1997 - LUIS A. TABUENA v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119247 February 17, 1997 - CESAR SULIT v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119536 February 17, 1997 - GLORIA S. DELA CRUZ v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121017 February 17, 1997 - OLIVIA B. CAMANAG v. JESUS F. GUERRERO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122165 February 17, 1997 - ALA MODE GARMENTS, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123823 February 17, 1997 - MODESTO G. ESPAÑO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 96249 February 19, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALIPIO QUIAMCO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 114396 February 19, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. WILLIAM ROBERT BURTON

  • G.R. No. 118140 February 19, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANTE PIANDIONG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121084 February 19, 1997 - TOYOTA MOTOR PHILS. CORP. v. TOYOTA MOTOR PHILS. CORP. LABOR UNION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107916 February 20, 1997 - PERCIVAL MODAY, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 112288 February 20, 1997 - DELSAN TRANSPORT LINES, INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. P-94-1034 February 21, 1997 - LEWELYN S. ESTRELLER v. SOFRONIO MANATAD, JR.

  • G.R. No. 73399 February 21, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAMON ABEDES

  • G.R. No. 117394 February 21, 1997 - HINATUAN MINING CORP. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. SDC-97-2-P February 24, 1997 - SOPHIA ALAWI v. ASHARY M. ALAUYA

  • G.R. No. 110427 February 24, 1997 - CARMEN CAÑIZA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-94-1195 February 26, 1997 - ROMEO NAZARENO, ET AL. v. ENRIQUE M. ALMARIO

  • G.R. No. 94237 February 26, 1997 - BUILDING CARE CORP. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 105294 February 26, 1997 - PACITA DAVID-CHAN v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107671 February 26, 1997 - REMMAN ENTERPRISES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109849 February 26, 1997 - MAXIMINO FUENTES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110098 February 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BUENAFE AZUGUE

  • G.R. No. 111538 February 26, 1997 - PARAÑAQUE KINGS ENTERPRISES, INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116033 February 26, 1997 - ALFREDO L. AZARCON v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123404 February 26, 1997 - AURELIO SUMALPONG v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-97-1368 February 27, 1997 - ERNESTO RIEGO, ET AL. v. EMILIO LEACHON, JR.

  •  





     
     

    G.R. No. 123823  February 17, 1997 - MODESTO G. ESPAÑO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    FIRST DIVISION

    [G.R. No. 123823. February 17, 1997.]

    MODESTO G. ESPAÑO, SR., Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS, HON. NICOLAS SIAN MONTEBLANCO and CARIDAD JINON, Respondents.

    Rene J. Espano for Petitioner.

    Eugenio O. Original for Private Respondent.


    SYLLABUS


    1. CIVIL LAW; LACHES; ELABORATED. — The essence of laches or "stale demands" is the failure or neglect for an unreasonable and unexplained length of time to do that which, by exercising due diligence, could or should have been done earlier thus giving rise to a presumption that the party entitled to assert it either has abandoned or declined to assert it. It is not concerned with mere lapse of time, the fact of delay, standing alone, being insufficient to constitute laches. There is no absolute rule as to what constitutes laches or staleness of demand; each case is to be determined according to its particular circumstances. Ultimately, however, the question of laches is addressed to the sound discretion of the court and, since it is an equitable doctrine, its application is controlled by equitable considerations.

    2. REMEDIAL LAW; CIVIL PROCEDURE; MOTION TO DISMISS; DENIAL THEREOF. — An order denying a motion to dismiss is merely interlocutory and therefore not appealable, nor can it be the subject of a petition for review on certiorari. Such order may only be reviewed in the ordinary course of law by an appeal from the judgment after trial. The ordinary procedure to be followed in that event is to file an answer, go to trial, and if the decision is adverse, reiterate the issue on appeal from the final judgment.chanrobles.com : virtual law library


    D E C I S I O N


    HERMOSISIMA, JR., J.:


    On May 27, 1994, private respondent Caridad Jinon instituted Civil Case No. 21-88 before the Regional Trial Court of Iloilo City, Branch 31, for annulment of title, recovery of possession, ownership, reconveyance and damages against petitioner Modesto G. Españo, Sr. Involved are Lot Nos. 2843 and 1941 allegedly both registered and titled in the name of Modesto G. Españo, Sr. under Transfer Certificate of Title Nos. T-55995 and T-74937, all of the Cadastral Survey of Sta. Barbara, Leganes, Iloilo.

    In her complaint, Caridad Jinon claims ownership over the two (2) parcels of land above-mentioned by way of succession from her grandparents, in representation of her father Mateo Jinon, who predeceased her and which ownership is evidenced by a Partition Agreement (Convenio de Particion) dated April 6, 1927 executed by herself and her uncles and co-heirs, Eusebio, Manuel, Anastacio and Eladio, all surnamed Jinon.

    In his answer with counterclaim, Españo submits, among others, the defenses of laches and prescription. He alleges that since TCT No. 55995 (Lot 2843) was registered in his name as early as August 8, 1968, while TCT No. T-74937 (Lot 1941) was transferred to him on March 22, 1973, twenty-five (25) and twenty (20) years respectively had already passed when Civil Case No. 21-811 was filed on May 27, 1994. Therefore, the ten (10)-year prescriptive period for reconveyance based on implied trust had already elapsed.

    Preliminary hearings on the affirmative defenses were scheduled by the court on October 28 and December 16, 1994. However, petitioner Españo moved for the dismissal of the case and, thus, submitted the issue on laches and prescription without presenting evidence inasmuch as, according to petitioner, the grounds relied upon are based on facts alleged by private respondent in the complaint.

    The trial court ruled that the defenses of laches and prescription are evidentiary in nature which could not be established by mere allegations in the pleadings and must be proved during the trial on the merits. The Order dated February 28, 1995 reads:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "WHEREFORE, premises considered, let the issue of laches and prescription raised by defendant Modesto Españo be resolved during the trial of the case on the merits.

    SO ORDERED." 1

    The motion for reconsideration subsequently filed was denied on April 21, 1995 by the lower court.

    On June 2, 1995, Españo brought a petition for certiorari before the public respondent Court of Appeals seeking to annul the Order dated February 28, 1995 and the subsequent Order dated April 21, 1995 denying his motion for reconsideration by the trial court, for having been issued with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction.chanrobles.com:cralaw:red

    The appellate court dismissed the petition in a decision promulgated on August 17, 1995. A motion for reconsideration having been filed, the court a quo likewise denied the same in a resolution dated February 8, 1996.

    Hence, this petition.

    Petitioner prays for the dismissal of Civil Case No. 21-88 with prejudice on grounds of laches and prescription.

    We deny the petition.

    The essence of laches or "stale demands" is the failure or neglect for an unreasonable and unexplained length of time to do that which, by exercising due diligence, could or should have been done earlier, 2 thus giving rise to a presumption that the party entitled to assert it either has abandoned or declined to assert it. 3 It is not concerned with mere lapse of time, the fact of delay, standing alone, being insufficient to constitute laches. 4

    There is no absolute rule as to what constitutes laches or staleness of demand; each case is to be determined according to its particular circumstances. Ultimately, however, the question of laches is addressed to the sound discretion of the court and, since it is an equitable doctrine, its application is controlled by equitable considerations. 5

    To substantiate his argument that private respondent in instituting Civil Case No. 21-88 is barred by laches, petitioner narrates factual averments, among which is the unreasonable length of time which took private respondent to institute the present suit from the time her cause of action accrued, which petitioner alleges to commence on April 6, 1927, the date when the Partition Agreement (Convenio de Particion) was executed between private respondent, her uncles and other co-heirs.

    Clearly, these are factual matters over which the Supreme Court will not venture to make any determination for we are not a trier of facts. The issue whether or not private respondent’s suit is barred by laches will be best ventilated in a full-blown proceeding before the trial court, for what is involved here is not a mere trifle but sizable parcels of land covered by two certificates of title, which private respondent claims to be part of her successional rights from her grandparents in representation of her father. True or not, private respondent must be given ample opportunity to prove her claim, and the petitioner to debunk the same.

    Petitioner likewise avers that prescription has set in to extinguish private respondent’s claim.

    Prescription may be effectively pleaded in a motion to dismiss if the complaint shows on its face that the action had already prescribed at the time it was filed. In the case at bench, the only way by which we can determine whether or not prescription has set in is the date of the issuance of Transfer Certificate of Title Nos. T-55995 and T-74937, allegedly in the name of petitioner Españo. Unfortunately, however, both the trial court and the public respondent Court of Appeals found that petitioner failed to attach to his answer a copy of his alleged titles nor even to allege therein the dates when these titles were supposedly issued. Thus, the court was left with nothing to effectively compute prescription. We find no substantial evidence in the records, apart from the self-serving averments of the petitioner, to disturb this factual finding of both courts. Apparently, petitioner has no one to blame but himself.

    We find occasion here to state the rule, once more, that an order denying a motion to dismiss is merely interlocutory and therefore not appealable, nor can it be the subject of a petition for review on certiorari. Such order may only be reviewed in the ordinary course of law by an appeal from the judgment after trial. The ordinary procedure to be followed in that event is to file an answer, go to trial, and if the decision is adverse, reiterate the issue on appeal from the final judgment. 6 This is is exactly what petitioner should have done in this case after his prayer for the dismissal of Civil Case No. 21-88 was denied by the trial court. Although the special civil action for certiorari may be availed of in case there is grave abuse of discretion or lack of jurisdiction on the part of the lower court, that vitiating error is indubitably not present in the instant case.

    WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby DENIED with costs against petitioner.

    SO ORDERED.

    Padilla, Bellosillo, Vitug and Kapunan, JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:



    1. Decision, p. 2; Rollo, p. 28.

    2. Chavez v. Bonto-Perez, 242 SCRA 73, 80 [1995], citing La Campana Food Products, Inc. v. Court of Appeals, 223 SCRA 151 [1993]; Radio Communications of the Philippines, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Commission, 223 SCRA 656 [1993]; Marcelino v. Court of Appeals, 210 SCRA 444 11992].

    3. Ibid., citing Bergado v. Court of Appeals, 173 SCRA 497 [1989].

    4. Ibid., citing Donato v. Court of Appeals, 217 SCRA 196 [1993].

    5. Jimenez v. Fernandez, 184 SCRA 190, 197 [1990].

    6. Reyes v. Camilon, 192 SCRA 445, 452 [1990], citing Buaya v. Judge Polo, 169 SCRA 471 [1989].

    G.R. No. 123823  February 17, 1997 - MODESTO G. ESPAÑO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.


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