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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
 

   
March-1997 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 51765 March 3, 1997 - REPUBLIC PLANTERS BANK v. ENRIQUE A. AGANA, SR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 93397 March 3, 1997 - TRADERS ROYAL BANK v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 99425 March 3, 1997 - ANTONIO RAMOS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 100487 & 100607 March 3, 1997 - ARTURO JULIANO v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 106581 March 3, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RENATO FLORES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110419 March 3, 1997 - UERM-MEMORIAL MEDICAL CENTER, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 114383 March 3, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JOEL COREA

  • G.R. No. 116437 March 3, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. PABLITO ANDAN

  • G.R. No. 117161 March 3, 1997 - RAMON INGLES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120704 March 3, 1997 - BARTOLOME C. CARALE, ET AL. v. PAMPIO A. ABARINTOS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123321 March 3, 1997 - ROMAN CATHOLIC ARCHBISHOP OF MANILA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123361 March 3, 1997 - TEOFILO CACHO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 125198 March 3, 1997 - MSCI-NACUSIP v. NWPC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 84449 March 4, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BENEDICTO JAVIER, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 102876 March 4, 1997 - BATAAN SHIPYARD AND ENG’G CORP. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118607 March 4, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JULITO FRANCO

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-96-1335 March 5, 1997 - INOCENCIO BASCO v. LEO H. RAPATALO

  • G.R. No. 126576 March 5, 1997 - RICARDO M. ANGOBUNG v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 83598 March 7, 1997 - LEONCIA BALOGBOG, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 94994-95 March 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LILIBETH CACO

  • G.R. No. 106212 March 7, 1997 - PROGRESS HOMES, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108395 March 7, 1997 - HEIRS OF TEODORO GUARING, JR. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 108604-10 March 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FEDERICO A. BURCE

  • G.R. No. 113420 March 7, 1997 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113905 March 7, 1997 - LEOPOLDO ALICBUSAN v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116211 March 7, 1997 - MEYNARDO POLICARPIO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116512 March 7, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. WILLIAM O. CASIDO, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-96-1353 March 11, 1997 - DANILO B. PARADA v. LORENZO B. VENERACION

  • G.R. No. 127066 March 11, 1997 - REYNALDO O. MALONZO v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117169 March 12, 1997 - PHILTREAD WORKERS UNION, ET AL. v. NIEVES R. CONFESOR, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121917 March 12, 1997 - ROBIN CARIÑO PADILLA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 99301 & 99343 March 13, 1997 - VICTOR KIERULF, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 100333 March 13, 1997 - HILARIO MAGCALAS, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 103611 March 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CESAR HERBIETO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107131 March 13, 1997 - NFD INT’L. MANNING AGENTS, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108454 March 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. TEDDY QUINAO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109779 March 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NESTOR MAÑOZCA

  • G.R. No. 110067 March 13, 1997 - LINDA T. ALMENDRAS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111478 March 13, 1997 - GEORGE F. SALONGA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111567 March 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. TEODORICO AVILLANO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116123 March 13, 1997 - SERGIO NAGUIAT, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116228 March 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EPIFANIO GAYON, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116352 March 13, 1997 - J. & D.O. AGUILAR CORP. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 116596-98 March 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LORENZO TOPAGUEN

  • G.R. No. 117266 March 13, 1997 - CONTEMPT PROCEEDINGS AGAINST VENTURA O. DUCAT, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 117955-58 March 13, 1997 - HERMINIGILDO TOMARONG, ET AL. v. ANTONIO C. LUBGUBAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119058 March 13, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ERLINDA VILLARAN

  • G.R. No. 120853 March 13, 1997 - RUDY ALMEDA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122427 March 13, 1997 - BENJAMIN LAZA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123881 March 13, 1997 - VIVA PRODUCTIONS, INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 91694 March 14, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. SABAS CALVO, JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 97626 March 14, 1997 - PHIL. BANK OF COMMERCE, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 114387 March 14, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALEJANDRO DEVILLERES

  • G.R. No. 120592 March 14, 1997 - TRADERS ROYAL BANK EMPLOYEES UNION v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121765 March 14, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RANDOLF B. MONTEALTO

  • G.R. No. 122646 March 14, 1997 - ADELIA C. MENDOZA v. ANGELITO C. TEH, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 112229 March 18, 1997 - RAYMOND PE LIM v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 114924-27 March 18, 1997 - DANTE NACURAY, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119321 March 18, 1997 - CATALINO F. BAÑEZ, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Bar Matter No. 712 March 19, 1997 - PETITION OF AL ARGOSINO TO TAKE THE LAWYER’S OATH

  • G.R. Nos. 100382-100385 March 19, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARIO TABACO

  • G.R. No. 111157 March 19, 1997 - ITOGON-SUYOC MINES, INC. v. OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117029 March 19, 1997 - PELTAN DEVELOPMENT, INC., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121112 March 19, 1997 - FELICIDAD MIRANO, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127325 March 19, 1997 - MIRIAM DEFENSOR SANTIAGO, ET AL. v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. P-95-1159 March 20, 1997 - COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. WILLIAM C. SEVILLO

  • G.R. No. 88684 March 20, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CESAR LACBANES

  • G.R. No. 95551 March 20, 1997 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. CONCEPCION S. ALARCON VERGARA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107019 March 20, 1997 - FRANKLIN M. DRILON, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116404 March 20, 1997 - FRANCISCO LUNA, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117218 March 20, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. GERRY NALANGAN

  • G.R. No. 119599 March 20, 1997 - MALAYAN INSURANCE CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127456 March 20, 1997 - JESUS A. JARIOL, ET AL. v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. MTJ-96-1091 March 21, 1997 - WILFREDO NAVARRO v. DEOGRACIAS K. DEL ROSARIO

  • G.R. No. 107699 March 21, 1997 - ALEX JACOBO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116692 March 21, 1997 - SAMAR II ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117097 March 21, 1997 - SAMAHAN NG OPTOMETRISTS SA PILIPINAS, ET AL. v. ACEBEDO INTL. CORP., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118436 March 21, 1997 - HEIRS OF MANUEL A. ROXAS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118836 March 21, 1997 - FEDERICO DORDAS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122728 March 21, 1997 - CASIANO A. ANGCHANGCO, JR. v. OMBUDSMAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123037 March 21, 1997 - TEODORO Q. PEÑA v. HRET, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. P-96-1184 March 24, 1997 - NBI, ET AL. v. RODOLFO TULIAO

  • G.R. No. 106588 March 24, 1997 - RAUL H. SESBREÑO v. CENTRAL BOARD OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-89-318 March 25, 1997 - LUCIANA Vda. DE ARAGO v. PATERNO T. ALVAREZ

  • G.R. No. 96229 March 25, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. GLORIOSA S. NAVARRO

  • G.R. No. 124137 March 25, 1997 - ROY M. LOYOLA v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126298 March 25, 1997 - PATRIA C. GUTIERREZ v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 99032 March 26, 1997 - RICARDO A. LLAMADO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 101817 March 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FELIPE IMMACULATA

  • G.R. No. 107801 March 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROSARIA V. IGNACIO

  • G.R. No. 110613 March 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDGAR VILLANUEVA

  • G.R. No. 113470 March 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANILO CORBES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 115951 March 26, 1997 - ZEBRA SECURITY AGENCY, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117378 March 26, 1997 - GIL CAPILI, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117408 March 26, 1997 - NATIONAL INVESTMENT AND DEV. CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117604 March 26, 1997 - CHINA BANKING CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118332 March 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. IRENEO PEREZ

  • G.R. No. 119528 March 26, 1997 - PAL, INC. v. CIVIL AERONAUTICS BOARD, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121031 March 26, 1997 - ROSAURO I. TORRES v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122013 March 26, 1997 - JOSE C. RAMIREZ v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 124333 March 26, 1997 - NATIVIDAD P. ARAGON v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119877 March 31, 1997 - BIENVENIDO ONGKINGCO, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  •  




     
     

    G.R. No. 116404   March 20, 1997 - FRANCISCO LUNA, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    SECOND DIVISION

    [G.R. No. 116404. March 20, 1997.]

    S/G FRANCISCO G. LUNA, ORBITO MACATIAG, JENNELTHO LANOJAN, DOMINGO PEREZ, RAYMUNDO ROMANO, LAMBERTO MONDEJAR, JUANITO DEL AMEN, DENNIS MARIANO, ARIEL SARGENTO and WENIFREDO LAGBO, Petitioners, v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, LIONS SECURITY & SERVICES CORP. and GRANDEUR SECURITY AGENCY, Respondents.

    Public Attorney’s Office, for Petitioners.

    Domingo C . Rodriguez for the private respondent Grandeur Security & Services Corporation.


    SYLLABUS


    1. LABOR AND SOCIAL LEGISLATION; REVISED RULES OF THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION; REQUISITES OF APPEAL; NOT COMPLIED WITH IN CASE AT BAR. — To be sure, as petitioners say, the date "4-12-93" written by hand on the Notice of Judgment/Decision, appears to be the date the Labor Arbiter’s decision was sent to petitioners’ counsel and the letters "rm" written above the typewritten name of Atty. Ernesto R. Javalera are not the initials of any person but are the abbreviations for "registered mail." Unlike other parties whose representatives the Notice of Judgment/Decision and wrote the date of personal service on them of a copy of the decision, the proof of service on Atty. Javalera appears to have been made by registered mail. This is evident upon an examination of the Notice of Judgment/Decision, a xerox copy of which is attached as Annex 1 of the Solicitor General’s Manifestation in lieu of Comment. With respect to the date of filing of petitioners’ memorandum, we are likewise inclined to sustain petitioners claim that this was on April 26, 1993, the date stamped on the envelope which, petitioners allege, contained the appeal memorandum they sent to the NLRC. This xerox copy of the envelope which is stamped "REGISTERED . . . APR 26, 1993." As no other mall appears to have sent by counsel to the addressee on that day, it is probable that this envelope contained the appeal memorandum of petitioners. Consequently, we think the appeal of petitioners to the NLRC was file on time. However, the records do not support their claim that they also paid the appeal fees on April 26, 1993, together with the filing of their appeal memorandum. What appears instead is that they paid the fees only on May 5, 1993, nine days after the expiration date of the reglementary period, as shown in the receipt given to petitioners. As the NLRC stated in its comment, the official receipt shows that the appeal fees were paid in cash only on May 5, 1993: "May it be noted on the Official Receipt of payment (p. 370 records) on the left lower portion stating "received." The box space for cash payment bears a check mark. This means to say that payment was made in cash and therefore goes to show that payment was made personally on May 5, 1993." This finding was not refuted by petitioners in their petition and reply. In the absence of clear and convincing evidence, this finding is entitled to great respect. As payment of the requisite appeal fees is an indispensable and jurisdictional requisite and not a mere technicality of law or procedure, and as the failure to comply with this requirement renders the decision of the court final, we hold that the NLRC correctly dismissed petitioners’ appeal. Indeed, appeal is only a statutory privilege and therefore it may only be exercised in the manner provided by law.

    2. REMEDIAL LAW; SPECIAL CIVIL ACTION FOR CERTIORARI., THE FILING OF A MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION IS A CONDITION SINE QUA NON. — The dismissal of this petition is in order because petitioners failed to file a motion for a reconsideration of the NLRC’s order before it was filed in this Court. The filing of a motion for reconsideration is a condition sine qua non for the filing of a petition for certiorari. The plain and adequate remedy referred to in Rule 65, 1 is a motion for reconsideration of the assailed decision. The purpose for this requirement is to enable the court or agency to pass upon and rectify its mistakes without the intervention of a higher court.

    3. ID.; ID.; ID.; ID.; PETITIONER’S CLAIM THAT A MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION IS NOT NECESSARY IN CASE AT BAR BECAUSE WHAT IS INVOLVED IS PURELY A LEGAL ISSUE IS UNTENABLE. — While the liberal construction of this requirement is in keeping with the constitutional mandate of protecting labor, nonetheless, there must be concrete, cogent, and valid reason for a party’s failure to comply with this requirement. Here, petitioners’ contention is that a motion for reconsideration is not necessary because what is involved is purely a legal issue. This claim is untenable. A question of law is involved "when the doubt or difference arises as to what the law is on a certain state of facts," whereas "there is a question of fact when the doubt or difference arises as to the truth or the falsehood of alleged facts." The questions when the order was received by petitioners, when the appeal was filed and when the appeal fees were paid are factual, not legal questions.


    D E C I S I O N


    MENDOZA, J.:


    This is a petition for certiorari to annul the order dated May 3, 1994 of the NLRC, dismissing petitioners’ appeal for having been filed beyond the reglementary period.

    Petitioners were security guards of private respondents Lion’s Security and Services Corporation and its successor, Grandeur Security Services Corporation. They filed a complaint for illegal dismissal, underpayment of wages and non-payment of labor standards benefits, before the regional arbitration branch of the NLRC. Judgment was rendered on March 18, 1993 against private respondents, holding them liable to pay petitioners wage differentials corresponding to the period of services rendered. But the Labor Arbiter found petitioners’ dismissal proper and their other claims to be without merit.

    Petitioners appealed to the NLRC. However, the NLRC dismissed their appeal on March 3, 1994, on the basis of its finding that petitioners’ counsel had been furnished a copy of the Labor Arbiter’s decision on April 12, 1993 but their appeal was filed only on May 5, 1993. The NLRC found that petitioners’ counsel received a copy of the decision on April 12, 1993 based on the Notice of Judgment/Decision attached to the record of the case, which bore the notation "4-12-93 rm" above the typewritten name of petitioners’ counsel, Atty. Ernesto R. Javalera. On the other hand, the NLRC based its statement that petitioners filed their appeal only on May 5, 1993 on the stamp "Received" of the NLRC Docket Section showing payment of the appeal fee and research fee. Consequently, the NLRC held that the appeal was filed out of time.

    Petitioners brought this special civil action of certiorari, assailing the NLRC’s order. They claim that their counsel received the decision of the Labor Arbiter on April 16, 1993 and filed their appeal on April 26, 1993, the last day of the 10-day reglementary period. As proof thereof, petitioners presented the registry return card addressed to the NLRC, which shows that the registered mail containing the decision was received by their counsel on April 16, 1993 and the envelope addressed to the NLRC, which they claimed contained their appeal memorandum, which was stamped April 26, 1993.

    The Solicitor General, in his Manifestation and Motion in lieu of Comment, agreed with petitioners, noting that the NLRC must have mistaken the date "4-12-93" appearing above the name of Atty. Ernesto R. Javalera in the Notice of Judgment/Decision for the date of receipt and the letters "rm" to be the "initials" of their counsel. But this could just have been the date a copy of the Labor Arbiter’s decision was sent and the letters ‘rm" meant that the decision was sent to petitioners’ counsel by registered mail.chanroblesvirtual|awlibrary

    The NLRC, on the other hand, argues that, even conceding that petitioners’ counsel received the appealed decision on April 16, 1993, the appeal of petitioners must nevertheless be considered as having been filed out of time because it was personally filed on May 5, 1993, based on the fact that the official receipt shows that the appeal and research fees were paid in cash on May 5, 1993 and that the appeal was stamped received by the Docket Section on that day. The NLRC avers that the envelope alone does not indicate that it contained petitioners’ memorandum on appeal and their appeal fees, hence, it does not prove petitioners’ allegation. The NLRC furthermore contends that this petition must be dismissed because petitioners did not file a motion for the reconsideration of the NLRC order before bringing this action.

    Private respondent Grandeur Security Services Corporation also defends the order of the NLRC and contends that petitioners’ appeal was not perfected because the required appeal fees were paid beyond the reglementary period. 1

    The issue in this case is whether the NLRC committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in dismissing the petitioners’ appeal. We hold that it did not. Under the rules of the NLRC, an appeal from the Labor Arbiter’s decision to the NLRC may be taken (1) by filing a verified memorandum of appeal and (2) by paying the appeal fees filed within ten (10) calendar days from receipt of a decision, award or order of the Labor Arbiter. 2 Both requisites must be satisfied, otherwise the running of the prescriptive period for perfecting an appeal will not be tolled.

    To be sure, as petitioners say, the date "4-12-93" written by hand on the Notice of Judgment/Decision, appears to be the date the Labor Arbiter’s decision was sent to petitioners’ counsel and the letters "rm" written above the typewritten name of Atty. Ernesto R. Javalera are not the initials of any person but are the abbreviations for "registered mail." Unlike other parties whose representatives signed the Notice of Judgment/Decision and wrote the date of personal service on them of a copy of the decision, the proof of service on Atty. Javalera appears to have been made by registered mail. This is evident upon an examination of the Notice of Judgment/Decision, a xerox copy of which is attached as Annex 1 of the Solicitor General’s Manifestation in lieu of Comment. With respect to the date of filing of petitioners’ memorandum, we are likewise inclined to sustain petitioners claim that this was on April 26, 1993, the date stamped on the envelope which, petitioners allege, contained the appeal memorandum they sent to the NLRC. This is clear from the xerox copy of the envelope which is stamped "REGISTERED . . . APR 26, 1993." This envelope is addressed to

    Hon. EDUARDO J. CARPIO

    OR EXECUTIVE LABOR ARBITER

    ARBITRATION BRANCH, Manila

    National Capital Region, NLRC

    Associated Bank Bldg.,

    T.M. KALAW St., Ermita, Manila,

    with indication of the name of the sender:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Atty. E.R. Javalera

    704 Del Monte Ave., QC

    As no other mail appears to have been sent by counsel to the addressee on that day, it is probable that this envelope contained the appeal memorandum of petitioners. Consequently, we think the appeal of petitioners to the NLRC was filed on time.

    However, the records do not support their claim that they also paid the appeal fees on April 26, 1993, together with the filing of their appeal memorandum. What appears instead is that they paid the fees only on May 5, 1993, nine days after the expiration date of the reglementary period, as shown in the receipt given to petitioners. As the NLRC stated in its comment, the official receipt shows that the appeal fees were paid in cash only on May 5, 1993:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    May it be noted on the Official Receipt of payment (p. 370 records) on the left lower portion stating "received." The box space for cash payment bears a check mark. This means to say that payment was made in cash and therefore goes to show that payment was made personally on May 5, 1993. 3

    This finding was not refuted by petitioners in their petition and reply. In the absence of clear and convincing evidence, this finding is entitled to great respect. 4

    As payment of the requisite appeal fees is an indispensable and jurisdictional requisite and not a mere technicality of law or procedure, and as the failure to comply with this requirement renders the decision of the court final, we hold that the NLRC correctly dismissed petitioners’ appeal. Indeed, appeal is only a statutory privilege and therefore it may only be exercised in the manner provided by law. 5

    In addition, the dismissal of this petition is in order because petitioners failed to file a motion for a reconsideration of the NLRC’s order before it was filed in this Court. The filing of a motion for reconsideration is a condition sine qua non for the filing of a petition for certiorari. 6 The plain and adequate remedy referred to in Rule 65, 1 is a motion for reconsideration of the assailed decision. The purpose for this requirement is to enable the court or agency to pass upon and rectify its mistakes without the intervention of a higher court. 7

    While the liberal construction of this requirement is in keeping with the constitutional mandate of protecting labor, nonetheless, there must be concrete, cogent, and valid reason for a party’s failure to comply with this requirement. 8 Here, petitioners’ contention is that a motion for reconsideration is not necessary because what is involved is purely a legal issue. This claim is untenable. A question of law is involved "when the doubt or difference arises as to what the law is on a certain state of facts," whereas "there is a question of fact when the doubt or difference arises as to the truth or the falsehood of alleged facts." 9 The questions when the order was received by petitioners, when the appeal was filed and when the appeal fees were paid are factual, not legal questions.

    WHEREFORE, the petition is DISMISSED.

    SO ORDERED.

    Regalado, Romero, Puno and Torres, Jr., JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:



    1. Rollo, p. 38.

    2. Rule VI, 3(a)(2). See Star Angel Handicraft v. National Labor Relations Commission, 236 SCRA 580, 584 (1994).

    3. Rollo, p. 84.

    4. See Capulong v. Court of Appeals, 185 SCRA 215 (1990); People v. De Guzman, 229 SCRA 795 (1994).

    5. Rodillas v. COMELEC, 245 SCRA 702 (1995).

    6. PNCC v. NLRC, 245 SCRA 668 (1995); Labudahon v. NLRC. 251 SCRA 129, (1995).

    7. Villarama v. NLRC, 236 SCRA 280 (1994).

    8. E.g., Philamlife Ins. Co. v. Bonto-Perez, 170 SCRA 508 (1989).

    9. Cheesman v. IAC, 193 SCRA 93, 100-101 (1991) (per Narvasa, J.).

    G.R. No. 116404   March 20, 1997 - FRANCISCO LUNA, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.




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