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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
 

   
July-2001 Jurisprudence                 

  • A.M. No. MTJ-99-1188 July 2, 2001 - JOSE E. GURAY v. FABIAN M. BAUTISTA

  • A.M. No. P-01-1481 July 5, 2001 - RCBC v. NOEL V. QUILANTANG

  • G.R. No. 135199 July 5, 2001 - CRISOSTOMO MAGAT, ET AL. v. ALBERT M. DELIZO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 141285 July 5, 2001 - CEBU INSTITUTE OF MEDICINE, ET AL. v. CEBU INSTITUTE OF MEDICINE EMPLOYEES’ UNION

  • G.R. No. 141947 July 5, 2001 - ISMAEL V. SANTOS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144275 July 5, 2001 - NATIONAL HOUSING AUTHORITY, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. 97-2-53-RTC July 6, 2001 - RE: FERDINAND J. MARCOS

  • G.R. No. 132318 July 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FERNANDO F. MUERONG

  • G.R. No. 134114 July 6, 2001 - NESTLE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 134779 July 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. HERSON FLORAGUE, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 137608-09 July 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. REMEGIO TAGANNA

  • G.R. No. 143375 July 6, 2001 - RUTH D. BAUTISTA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 131856-57 July 9, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. WILLIAM MONTINOLA

  • G.R. Nos. 85494, 85496 & 195071 July 10, 2001 - CHOITHRAM JETHMAL RAMNANI, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126166 July 10, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. ALLAN TEJADA

  • G.R. No. 133928 July 10, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NECESARIO HIJAPON, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 136267 July 10, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FIDEL ABRENICA CUBCUBIN, JR.

  • G.R. Nos. 142801-802 July 10, 2001 - BUKLOD NG KAWANING EIIB, ET AL. v. RONALDO B. ZAMORA, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-00-1253 July 11, 2001 - KIAT REAPORT, ET AL. v. EFREN S. MARIANO

  • A.M. No. P-01-1452 July 11, 2001 - FERMA C. PORTIC v. MARIO B. LOPEZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. P-01-1479 July 11, 2001 - OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. RUBEN B. ALBAYTAR

  • G.R. No. 104802 July 11, 2001 - AURELIA S. LLANA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 108301 & 132539 July 11, 2001 - MANILA ELECTRIC COMPANY v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108346 July 11, 2001 - MARIANO Z. VELARDE, ET AL v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 135210 July 11, 2001 - COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. ISABELA CULTURAL CORP.

  • G.R. No. 137050 July 11, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. GEORGE CORTES

  • G.R. No. 137891 July 11, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JESUS PATRIARCA

  • G.R. No. 140365 July 11, 2001 - CESAR P. UY, ET AL v. VICTORINO P. EVANGELISTA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140974 July 11, 2001 - RAMON ORO v. GERARDO D. DIAZ

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1349 July 12, 2001 - BERNADETTE MONDEJAR v. MARINO S. BUBAN

  • G.R. No. 101974 July 12, 2001 - VICTORIA P. CABRAL v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 102313 July 12, 2001 - R. F. NAVARRO & CO. v. FORTUNATO A. VAILOCES, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 102696, 102716, 108257 & 120954 July 12, 2001 - ALBERTO LOOYUKO, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 104223 July 12, 2001 - TIBURCIO SAMONTE v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 104383 July 12, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. VALERIANO AMESTUZO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 112590 July 12, 2001 - STATE INVESTMENT HOUSE v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 131638-39 July 12, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LORETO D. MEDENILLA

  • G.R. No. 138737 July 12, 2001 - FINMAN GEN. ASSURANCE CORP., v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138576-77 July 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JIMMY JACOB

  • A.M. No. MTJ-00-1322 July 17, 2001 - RENATO H. SANCHEZ v. GEMINIANO A. EDUARDO

  • A.M. No. P-01-1484 July 17, 2001 - JOSE R. ASTORGA v. NICOLASITO S. SOLAS

  • G.R. Nos. 103550 & 103551 July 17, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. ROMERICO PORRAS

  • G.R. No. 133814 July 17, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANDRES ORTIZ

  • G.R. Nos. 134540-41 July 18, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. DIONISIO BATALLER

  • G.R. Nos. 109559 & 109581 July 19, 2001 - BERNARDO P. ABESAMIS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111535 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALEJANDRO CAMPOS

  • G.R. Nos. 113255-56 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO S. GONZALES

  • G.R. No. 125698 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FRANCISCO E. HAPA, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 128153-56 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. VICENTE P. BUISON

  • G.R. No. 131216 July 19, 2001 - LEONARDO A. QUISUMBING, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132177 July 19, 2001 - JOSE F. CAOIBES v. OMBUDSMAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 133190 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. SANTOS LOR

  • G.R. No. 135145 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAYMOND G. MAXION

  • G.R. No. 137545 July 19, 2001 - TERESITA D. GAITE v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139789 July 19, 2001 - POTENCIANO ILUSORIO, ET AL. v. ERLINDA K. ILUSORIO BILDNER, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139967 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MANUEL TALAVERA

  • G.R. Nos. 141011 & 141028 July 19, 2001 - CITYTRUST BANKING CORP. v. ISAGANI C. VILLANUEVA

  • G.R. No. 144179 July 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAMSHAND C. THAMSEY

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1350 July 20, 2001 - LORENZO PASCUAL, ET AL. v. CESAR M. DUMLAO

  • G.R. No. 110263 July 20, 2001 - ASIAVEST MERCHANT BANKERS (M) BERHAD v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117187 July 20, 2001 - UNION MOTOR CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120176 July 20, 2001 - MA. VALENTINA SANTANA-CRUZ v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 124442 July 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ARMANDO S. COMPACION

  • G.R. No. 132926 July 20, 2001 - ELVIRA AGULLO v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 133580 July 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MAXIMO GENEBLAZO

  • G.R. Nos. 135030-33 July 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MERCY LOGAN

  • G.R. No. 135666 July 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MELCHOR B. GARCIA

  • G.R. No. 135865 July 20, 2001 - NAGKAKAISANG KAPISANAN KAPITBAHAYAN SA COMMONWEALTH AVE. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138501 July 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ERNESTO M. LAXA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139150 July 20, 2001 - PABLO DELA CRUZ v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142024 July 20, 2001 - GUILLERMO SARABIA v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.

  • G.R. No. 145838 July 20, 2001 - NICASIO I. ALCANTARA v. COMMISSION ON THE SETTLEMENT OF LAND PROBLEMS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 146079 July 20, 2001 - KANEMITSU YAMAOKA v. PESCARICH MANUFACTURING CORP., ET AL.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1564 July 26, 2001 - MARISSA M. GORDON, ET AL. v. FRISCO T. LILAGAN

  • G.R. Nos. 132325-26 July 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO ESPINA

  • G.R. No. 133225 July 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDWIN CONCEPCION, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 113176 & 113342 July 30, 2001 - HANIL DEVELOPMENT CO. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • A.M. Nos. P-00-1381 & A.M. No. P-00-1382 July 31, 2001 - EFREN B. MALLARE v. RONALD ALLAN A. FERRY

  • G.R. No. 105647 July 31, 2001 - ERNESTO BIONA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 121298 & 122123 July 31, 2001 - GENARO RUIZ, SR., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129329 July 31, 2001 - ESTER M. ASUNCION v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130707 July 31, 2001 - VERONICA ROBLE, ET AL. v. DOMINADOR ARBASA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 134634 July 31, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LAZARO CLARIÑO, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 134831-32 July 31, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAMON N. LOGMAO

  • G.R. Nos. 136827 & 136799 July 31, 2001 - SECRETARY OF AGRARIAN REFORM, ET AL. v. TROPICAL HOMES

  • G.R. No. 136847 July 31, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. RODULFO P. VILLARIN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138289 July 31, 2001 - GRACIANO PALELE v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139180 July 31, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROLANDO RIVERA

  • G.R. No. 139529 July 31, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. TIMOTEO BRACERO

  • G.R. No. 139622 July 31, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. PEDRO PERRERAS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142616 July 31, 2001 - PHIL. NATIONAL BANK v. RITRATTO GROUP INC., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143687 July 31, 2001 - RAMON ESTANISLAO, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144702 July 31, 2001 - U.I.C. ET AL. v. U.I.C. TEACHING AND NON-TEACHING PERSONNEL AND EMPLOYEES UNION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 145389 July 31, 2001 - ANIANO A. DESIERTO, ET AL. v. RONNIE C. SILVESTRE

  •  





     
     

    A.M. No. P-01-1484   July 17, 2001 - JOSE R. ASTORGA v. NICOLASITO S. SOLAS

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    THIRD DIVISION

    [A.M. No. P-01-1484. July 17, 2001.]

    (Formerly OCA I.P.I. No. 96-194-P)

    EXECUTIVE JUDGE JOSE R. ASTORGA, Complainant, v. NICOLASITO S. SOLAS, Clerk of Court, Municipal Trial Court in Cities, Iloilo City, Respondent.

    D E C I S I O N


    VITUG, J.:


    In a letter-complaint, dated 05 July 1996, former Executive Judge Jose R. Astorga of the Municipal Trial Court in Cities ("MTCC"), Iloilo City, charged respondent Clerk of Court, Nicolasito Solas, of MTCC, Iloilo City, with various irregularities in the performance of his duties.cralaw : red

    Complainant averred that, on 25 June 1996, a voucher for payment or withdrawal of cash bond deposit, along with an accomplished Land Bank of the Philippines Check No. 17728546, was presented to him for his signature and release. Noticing that the voucher was signed by Judge Nelida Medina only on 25 June 1996 but that the check was by then already signed on and dated 18 June 1996 by respondent, Judge Astorga disapproved the voucher and the release of the check. The check (of 18 June 1996) was thereafter canceled and, on 01 July 1996, replaced by a new check. Complainant also stated that respondent unduly acted as a Notary Public; attached to the complaint were photocopies of private documents notarized by Respondent. Complainant said that he had called the attention of respondent several times on this matter but the latter still continued to notarize documents not related to his official functions.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    In his comment, respondent denied having committed any irregularity in signing LBP Check No. 17728546 prior to the preparation of the voucher. He maintained that he did not falsify the check and that no one was prejudiced by his action. Respondent claimed that the complaint was filed merely to favor the assistant clerk of court, Ma. Theresa Zerrudo, a close associate of complainant. He denied having improperly acted in occasionally administering oaths which he considered to be part of his functions under the Manual for Clerks of Court.

    The Court, in its Resolution of 19 November 1997, referred the case to Executive Judge Severino C. Aguilar of the Regional Trial Court of Iloilo City, Branch 35, for investigation, report and recommendation.

    During the pendency of the case, the Integrated Bar of the Philippines ("IBP"), Iloilo City, through its Board of Directors, filed on 19 January 1998 a Petition before the Office of the Court Administrator to enjoin respondent from notarizing and administering oaths on documents that had no relation to his official duties. In the "1st Indorsement" of Deputy Court Administrator Zenaida Elepaño, the petition of the IBP was referred to Judge Aguilar for inclusion in his investigation of "OCA-IPI No. 96-194-P, entitled Judge Jose R. Astorga v. Nicolasito Solas." ‘

    After a series of conferences, the investigating judge recommended, in his "order" of 30 July 1998, to have the instant administrative matter considered closed and terminated, with a warning that a repetition by respondent of his questioned conduct could warrant a drastic action from the Office of the Executive Judge. In his order, the investigating judge took into account the letter, dated 08 July 1998, of respondent expressing remorse over an "honest mistake" in signing the check even prior to the preparation of the voucher. Respondent apologized for the inconvenience he had caused Judge Astorga. The order contained the conformity of complainant and his acceptance of respondent’s apology. The investigating judge explained that he issued the order as being a move to restore cordial relationship between Judge Astorga and Respondent.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    Relative to the petition of the IBP, the investigating judge issued an order, dated 19 February 1998, to the effect that based on an agreement with the Iloilo City IBP, represented by its President Atty. Von Lovel Bedina, respondent would discontinue his practice of notarizing documents and administering oaths on matters not related to his official function as a clerk of court. Thus, he felt, no sanction need yet be imposed on Respondent.

    The Office of the Court Administrator ("OCA"), in its memorandum, of 11 December 2000, gave its own assessment of the case.

    On the issue of the premature signing of Land Bank Check No. 17728546, the OCA found that indeed respondent had acted in good faith and that, in any case, there was no prejudice that resulted to anyone.

    Insofar as the charge of notarizing documents and administering oaths unrelated to his office, respondent was recommended by the OCA to be sanctioned by an imposition of a P5,000.00 fine with a warning that a repetition of the same offense would be dealt with more severely, citing Section N, Chapter VIII, Manual for Clerk of Court —

    "DUTY TO ADMINISTER OATH — Officers authorized to administer oaths, with the exception of notaries public, municipal judges and clerks of court are not obliged to administer oath or execute certificates save in matters of official business; and with the exception of notaries public, the offices performing the service in those matters shall charge no fee, unless specifically authorized by law."cralaw virtua1aw library

    The Court accepts the findings and recommendations of the OCA.

    The OCA was convinced that the signing of Land Bank Check No. 17728546 prior to the preparation of the voucher was done in good faith and no one was prejudiced thereby. The Court, nevertheless, would still remind respondent to follow regular procedure in future transactions of this nature.

    In respect to the other charge, respondent acted imprudently in notarizing documents and administering oath on matters alien to his official duties. The Resolution, dated 18 December 1990, of the Court En Banc on Administrative Matter No. 90-10-1498-MTC (Letter-query of Clerk of Court II, Bonifacio D. Paguirigan, MTC, Aparri, Cagayan) stated thusly:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "This refers to an inquiry of Bonifacio D. Paguirigan on whether he as Clerk of Court of the Municipal Trial Court of Aparri, Cagayan can administer oath of affidavits of parties and witnesses which are to be filed in court. Under Section 21 of the Administrative Code of 1917, the general authority to administer oaths given to Clerks of Court was limited to Clerks of Court of the First Instance (now Regional Trial Court) and the Clerk of Court of the Supreme Court, Section 41 of the Administrative Code of 1987 amending Sec. 21 of Administrative Code of 1917 was however, amended by Republic Act No. 6788 approved on July 25, 1989, to read:chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    "SECTION 41. Officers Authorized to Administer Oath. — The following officers have general authority to administer oaths: President; Vice President; Members and Secretaries of both Houses of the Congress; Members of the Judiciary; Secretaries of Departments; Provincial governors and lieutenant-governors; city mayors; municipal mayors; bureau directors; regional directors; clerk of court; registrars of deeds; other civilian officers in public service of the government of the Philippines whose appointments are vested in the President and are subject to confirmation by the Commission on Appointments; all other constitutional officers; and notaries public.’

    "From the above quoted provision, the term ‘clerk of courts’ is used as a general term. No specification was made as to the court to which said clerks of courts belong. The intention of the law is clear, to remove the limitation, and hence, to authorize all clerks of courts regardless of whether they are clerks of the metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts, to administer oaths on matter involving official business."cralaw virtua1aw library

    Clerks of court are notaries public ex-officio, and may thus notarize documents or administer oaths but only when the matter is related to the exercise of their official functions. Clerks of court should not in their ex-officio capacity take part in the execution of private documents bearing no relation at all to their official functions. The Court takes judicial notice of the fact that Iloilo City is a highly urbanized city and obviously not a far-flung municipality which has neither lawyers nor notaries public to possibly here warrant an exceptional rule.

    The Court in a number of cases has sanctioned members of the Bench in notarizing documents unrelated to the proper discharge of their offices. In Tabao v. Asis, 1 the Court imposed upon a judge a fine of P10,000.00 for notarizing a Special Power of Attorney; still, in another case, the Court fined a judge in the amount of P5,000.00 when he notarized a pleading filed before the Department of Agrarian Reform and Adjudication Board (DARAB). 2

    WHEREFORE, the Court, finding Nicolasito Solas, Clerk of Court of the Municipal Trial Court in Cities, Iloilo City, guilty of abuse of authority, hereby imposes the OCA recommended FINE of Five Thousand Pesos (P5,000.00) with a warning that a repetition of the same or similar act in the future will be dealt with severely.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    SO ORDERED.

    Melo and Panganiban, JJ., concur.

    Gonzaga-Reyes and Sandoval-Gutierrez, JJ., are on leave.

    Endnotes:



    1. 252 SCRA 581.

    2. Horst Franz Ellert v. Judge Victorio Galapon, Jr., Administrative Matter No. MTJ-00-1294, 31 July 2000.

    A.M. No. P-01-1484   July 17, 2001 - JOSE R. ASTORGA v. NICOLASITO S. SOLAS


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