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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
 

   
June-2001 Jurisprudence                 

  • A.M. No. P-00-1446 June 6, 2001 - PATERNO R. PLANTILLA v. RODRIGO G. BALIWAG

  • A.M. No. P-91-642 June 6, 2001 - SOLEDAD LAURO v. EFREN LAURO

  • G.R. No. 92328 June 6, 2001 - DAP MINING ASSO. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 100579 June 6, 2001 - LEANDRO P. GARCIA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113918 June 6, 2001 - MARCELINA G. TRINIDAD, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121272 June 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. REYDERICK LAGO

  • G.R. No. 122353 June 6, 2001 - EVANGELINE DANAO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129534 & 141169 June 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NESTOR MACANDOG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138949 June 6, 2001 - UNION BANK OF THE PHIL. v. SEC

  • G.R. No. 138971 June 6, 2001 - PEZA v. RUMOLDO R FERNANDEZ

  • G.R. No. 139034 June 6, 2001 - DEVELOPMENT BANK OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139323 June 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CARLO ELLASOS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140128 June 6, 2001 - ARNOLD P. MOLLANEDA v. LEONIDA C. UMACOB

  • G.R. No. 140277 June 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. GUILLERMO BALDAGO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 141529 June 6, 2001 - FRANCISCO YAP, JR. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142888 June 6, 2001 - EVELIO P. BARATA v. BENJAMIN ABALOS JR.

  • G.R. No. 143561 June 6, 2001 - JONATHAN D. CARIAGA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110335 June 18, 2001 - IGNACIO GONZALES, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-01-1615 June 19, 2001 - WINNIE BAJET v. PEDRO M. AREOLA

  • A.M. No. RTJ-01-1633 June 19, 2001 - ANTONIO and ELSA FORTUNA v. MA. NIMFA PENACO-SITACA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 99433 June 19, 2001 - PROJECT BUILDERS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 114944 June 19, 2001 - MANUEL C. ROXAS, ET AL. v. CONRADO M. VASQUEZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120701 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JONATHAN CRISANTO

  • G.R. No. 123916 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LYNTON ASUNCION

  • G.R. No. 130605 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FELIX UGANAP, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132160 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARIO DE LEON, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132223 June 19, 2001 - BONIFACIA P. VANCIL v. HELEN G. BELMES

  • G.R. No. 134895 June 19, 2001 - STA. LUCIA REALTY and DEV’T., ET AL. v. LETICIA CABRIGAS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 137164 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALBERT NUBLA

  • G.R. No. 137752 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROBERT AYUNGON

  • G.R. Nos. 138298 & 138982 June 19, 2001 - RAOUL B. DEL MAR v. PAGCOR, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139313 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FLORANTE LEAL

  • G.R. No. 140690 June 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NAZAR U. CHAVEZ

  • G.R. No. 141441 June 19, 2001 - JOSE SUAN v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. 00-10-230-MTCC June 20, 2001 - RE: JULIAN C. OCAMPO III AND RENATO C. SAN JUAN

  • A.M. No. 00-11-521-RTC June 20, 2001 - RE: AWOL OF MS. LILIAN B. BANTOG

  • A.M. No. P-99-1346 June 20, 2001 - RESTITUTO L. CASTRO v. CARLOS BAGUE

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1606 June 20, 2001 - PATRIA MAQUIRAN v. LILIA G. LOPEZ

  • G.R. No. 84831 June 20, 2001 - PACENCIO ABEJARON v. FELIX NABASA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109666 June 20, 2001 - ROGERIO R. OLAGUER, ET AL. v. EUFEMIO DOMINGO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113564 June 20, 2001 - INOCENCIA YU DINO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 115851 June 20, 2001 - LA JOLLA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127129 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROLANDO CABAYA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 128617 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CESAR BACUS

  • G.R. Nos. 129292-93 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ARLENGEN DEGALA

  • G.R. No. 130524 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RUDY MADIA

  • G.R. No. 131036 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DONATO DEL ROSARIO

  • G.R. Nos. 135976-80 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CLAUDIO GALENO

  • G.R. No. 138629 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAMON CAMACHO

  • G.R. No. 139430 June 20, 2001 - EDI STAFF BUILDERS INTERNATIONAL v. FERMINA D. MAGSINO

  • G.R. Nos. 139445-46 June 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODRIGO GONZALES

  • G.R. No. 142304 June 20, 2001 - CITY OF MANILA v. OSCAR SERRANO, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1342 June 21, 2001 - BISHOP CRISOSTOMO A. YALUNG, ET AL. v. ENRIQUE M. PASCUA

  • G.R. No. 108558 June 21, 2001 - ANDREA TABUSO, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109197 June 21, 2001 - JAYME C. UY, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 111580 & 114802 June 21, 2001 - SHANGRI-LA INTERNATIONAL HOTEL MNGT. LTD. ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 116200-02 June 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ELEUTERIO TAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 131131 June 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ABELARDO SALONGA

  • G.R. No. 134138 June 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDMUNDO BRIONES AYTALIN

  • G.R. Nos. 135552-53 June 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ABEL ABACIA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139542 June 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. INOCENCIO GONZALEZ

  • G.R. No. 140206 June 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODOLFO MATYAONG

  • G.R. No. 142023 June 21, 2001 - SANNY B. GINETE v. SUNRISE MANNING AGENCY, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 103068 June 22, 2001 - MEAT PACKING CORP. OF THE PHIL. v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-96-1110 June 25, 2001 - MANUEL N. MAMBA, ET AL. v. DOMINADOR L. GARCIA

  • G.R. No. 116710 June 25, 2001 - DANILO D. MENDOZA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117857 June 25, 2001 - LUIS S. WONG v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 128126 June 25, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAFAEL M. CATAPANG

  • G.R. No. 132051 June 25, 2001 - TALA REALTY SERVICES CORP. v. BANCO FILIPINO SAVINGS AND MORTGAGE BANK

  • G.R. No. 134068 June 25, 2001 - UNION BANK OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 136221 June 25, 2001 - EQUATORIAL REALTY DEVELOPMENT v. MAYFAIR THEATER

  • G.R. No. 136382 June 25, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FIDEL ALBORIDA

  • G.R. Nos. 138439-41 June 25, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARIO PANGANIBAN

  • G.R. No. 141141 June 25, 2001 - PAGCOR v. CARLOS P. RILLORAZA

  • G.R. No. 141801 June 25, 2001 - SOLOMON ALVAREZ v. COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 143428 June 25, 2001 - SANDOVAL SHIPYARDS, ET AL. v. PRISCO PEPITO, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. 99-11-423-RTC June 26, 2001 - RE: Report on the Judicial Audit Conducted in the Regional Trial Court

  • A.M. No. RTJ-99-1461 June 26, 2001 - RICARDO DELA CRUZ v. HERMINIA M. PASCUA

  • A.M. No. RTJ-99-1486 June 26, 2001 - OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. ISMAEL SANCHEZ

  • G.R. Nos. 110547-50 & 114526-667 June 26, 2001 - JOSE SAYSON v. SANDIGANBAYAN ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120859 June 26, 2001 - METROPOLITAN BANK AND TRUST COMPANY v. FRANCISCO Y. WONG

  • G.R. No. 123542 June 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROGELIO BULOS

  • G.R. Nos. 132848-49 June 26, 2001 - PHILROCK v. CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY ARBITRATION COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 133990 June 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. HECTOR MARIANO

  • G.R. No. 134764 June 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. BENJAMIN FABIA

  • G.R. Nos. 139626-27 June 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DOMINGO DELA CRUZ

  • G.R. No. 143204 June 26, 2001 - HYATT TAXI SERVICES INC. v. RUSTOM M. CATINOY

  • G.R. Nos. 147589 & 147613 June 26, 2001 - ANG BAGONG BAYANI-OFW LABOR PARTY, ET AL. v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130661 June 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANILO I. TORRES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 135882 June 27, 2001 - LOURDES T. MARQUEZ v. ANIANO A. DESIERTO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140001 June 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDUARDO BUENAFLOR

  • A.C. No. 3910 June 28, 2001 - JOSE S. DUCAT v. ARSENIO C. VILLALON, ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 4073 June 28, 2001 - ARACELI SIPIN-NABOR v. BENJAMIN BATERINA

  • A.M. No. P-01-1480 June 28, 2001.

    AMADO S. CAGUIOA v. CRISANTO FLORA

  • A.M. No. P-99-1343 June 28, 2001 - ORLANDO T. MENDOZA v. ROSBERT M. TUQUERO, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1576 June 28, 2001 - SIMPLICIO ALIB v. EMMA C. LABAYEN

  • G.R. No. 105364 June 28, 2001 - PHIL. VETERANS BANK EMPLOYEES UNION-N.U.B.E., ET AL. v. BENJAMIN VEGA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110813 June 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ERNESTO PARDUA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110914 June 28, 2001 - ALFREDO CANUTO; JR., ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 112453-56 June 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. GERARDO LATUPAN

  • G.R. Nos. 112563 & 110647 June 28, 2001 - HEIRS OF KISHINCHAND HIRANAND DIALDAS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120630 June 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARCELO PALERMO

  • G.R. No. 131954 June 28, 2001 - ASELA B. MONTECILLO, ET AL v. CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION

  • G.R. Nos. 132026-27 June 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARIO ABENDAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132362 June 28, 2001 - PIO BARRETTO REALTY DEV’T. CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132837 June 28, 2001 - JO CINEMA CORP., ET AL. v. LOLITA C. ABELLANA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 133605 June 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BENJAMIN BARRIAS

  • G.R. No. 135846 June 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. NOEL ORTEGA

  • G.R. No. 138270 June 28, 2001 - SEA POWER SHIPPING ENTERPRISES INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142314 June 28, 2001 - MC ENGINEERING, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143723 June 28, 2001 - LITONJUA GROUP OF CO.’s., ET AL. v. TERESITA VIGAN

  • G.R. No. 144113 June 28, 2001 - EDWEL MAANDAL v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL

  • G.R. No. 144942 June 28, 2001 - COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. LA SUERTE CIGAR.

  • G.R. No. 146062 June 28, 2001 - SANTIAGO ESLABAN v. CLARITA VDA. DE ONORIO

  • A.M. No. 00 4-166-RTC June 29, 2001 - Re: Report on the Judicial Audit

  • A.M. No. 01-4-03-SC June 29, 2001 - HERNANDO PEREZ, ET AL. v. JOSEPH E. ESTRADA, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-00-1380 June 29, 2001 - GLORIA O. DINO v. FRANCISCO DUMUKMAT

  • G.R. No. 110480 June 29, 2001 - BANGKO SILANGAN DEVELOPMENT BANK v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111860 June 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JESUS CLEDORO

  • G.R. No. 116092 June 29, 2001 - SUSANA VDA. DE COCHINGYAN, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118251 June 29, 2001 - METROPOLITAN BANK AND TRUST COMPANY v. REGINO T. VERIDIANO II, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121597 June 29, 2001 - PHIL. NATIONAL BANK v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 125944 June 29, 2001 - DANILO SOLANGON, ET AL. v. JOSE AVELINO SALAZAR

  • G.R. No. 126396 June 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. FELIXBERTO LAO-AS

  • G.R. No. 128705 June 29, 2001 - CONRADO AGUILAR v. COMMERCIAL SAVINGS BANK, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129782 June 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BALWINDER SINGH, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 131968 June 29, 2001 - ERNESTO PENGSON, ET AL v. MIGUEL OCAMPO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132059 June 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. WENEFREDO DIMSON ASOY

  • G.R. No. 138598 June 29, 2001 - ASSET PRIVATIZATION TRUST v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144542 June 29, 2001 - FRANCISCO DELA PEÑA, ET AL v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  •  





     
     

    G.R. No. 139430   June 20, 2001 - EDI STAFF BUILDERS INTERNATIONAL v. FERMINA D. MAGSINO

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    SECOND DIVISION

    [G.R. No. 139430. June 20, 2001.]

    EDI STAFF BUILDERS INTERNATIONAL, INC. and LEOCADIO J. DOMINGUEZ, Petitioners, v. FERMINA D. MAGSINO, Respondent.

    D E C I S I O N


    MENDOZA, J.:


    This is a petition for review on certiorari of the decision, 1 dated March 11, 1999, and the resolution, 2 dated July 20, 1999, of the Court of Appeals, affirming the finding of the National Labor Relations Commission that respondent Fermina D. Magsino had been illegally dismissed and ordering petitioner EDI Staffbuilders International, Inc. (EDI) and Leocadio J. Dominguez to pay separation pay to respondent at the rate of P10,000.00 a month for every year of service.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    The antecedent facts are as follows:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Petitioner EDI is a duly licensed recruitment agency. Petitioner Leocadio J. Dominguez is its president, while respondent Fermina D. Magsino was until her dismissal the supervisor of its Processing and Documentation Group responsible for ensuring that all the documentary and other requirements for the deployment abroad of contract workers recruited by petitioner were complied with. Among the requirements was the remittance of premium payments on the repatriation bonds of contract workers. Under Department Order No. 28, series of 1991 of the Department of Labor and Employment, overseas contract workers whose employment contracts have terms of six months or longer are required to post repatriation bonds to guarantee the reimbursement of the costs of repatriation, including air fare from the job site and other incidental expenses, in the event of the termination of their employment.

    In compliance with the DOLE order, petitioner EDI required overseas contract workers recruited by it to pay P400.00 a year as premium depending on the length of their respective employment contracts. The premiums were remitted to a bonding company accredited by the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency. The bonding company issues a "Certificate of Coverage" or COC indicating the name of the covered overseas contract worker, the duration of the repatriation bond, and the premiums paid. The COCs are submitted together with other documents to the POEA.

    On April 16, 1993, Dan de Guzman, the manager of petitioner’s Processing and Documentation Group, sent respondent the following memorandum:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Management has received reports on your withholding of collected premium payments for [the] workers’ mandatory repatriation bond.

    As you well know, all collections are supposed to be properly documented, accounted for, and subsequently remitted/reported to accounting, whether these are official service fees of EDI-SBII or payments to government offices for processing of workers’ travel documents. When PDG records were reviewed, it was discovered that our document analyst has been collecting premium payments from workers for a two-year bond coverage in accordance with their employment contract[s]. However, based on your alleged instructions, collections for two-year premium payments had been turned over to you. Subsequently, you released to the POEA liaison officer premium payments only for one year. In effect, you withheld one-year premium payment[s] which remain unaccounted to this day. It appears that this procedure has been going on since January 1992.

    In this connection, you are required to submit to the undersigned within three (3) working days from receipt hereof your written clarification and/or explanations on the foregoing acts, and to show and justify why no disciplinary action should be taken against you. 3

    Instead of complying with the memorandum, respondent tendered her resignation effective May 30, 1993. 4 However, action on her resignation letter was held in abeyance pending the result of the investigation of the charge against her. 5 On May 20, 1993, respondent was given notice of her termination. 6

    On July 12, 1993, respondent filed a complaint for illegal dismissal, nonpayment of salaries, leave pay, 13th month pay, profit sharing for 1992, service award for 10 years, and maternity benefits against herein petitioners. She claimed she had been dismissed without cause and without notices.

    As no amicable settlement had been reached, the Labor Arbiter on August 25, 1993 directed both parties to file their position papers.

    Only respondent complied. The Labor Arbiter deemed as unrebutted the allegations in respondent’s complaint and position paper. On May 19, 1994, the Labor Arbiter rendered his decision, ordering petitioners to reinstate respondent to her former position without loss of seniority rights and to pay her P91,492.80 backwages and P7,624.40 13th month pay. 7

    Petitioners appealed to the NLRC which, in its decision, 8 dated March 22, 1996, affirmed the Labor Arbiter’s decision. The NLRC held:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    The submission of [petitioners’] position paper in the guise of an appeal could not be entertained under the criteria set forth in Sec. 2 of Rule VI of the Rules of Procedure of the NLRC, to wit:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    SECTION 2. Grounds. — The appeal may be entertained only on any of the following grounds:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    a) If there is prima facie evidence of abuse of discretion on the part of the Labor Arbiter, Regional Director or duly authorized Hearing Officer or Administrator of POEA;

    b) If the decision, order or award was secured through fraud or coercion, including graft and corruption;

    c) If made purely on questions of law; and/or

    d) If serious errors in the findings of facts are raised which, if not corrected, would cause grave or irreparable damage or injury to the appellant. 9

    Through a new counsel, petitioners moved for a reconsideration, alleging that their former lawyer deliberately did not file a position paper in their behalf before the Labor Arbiter and did not even explain his failure to do so on appeal to the NLRC. However, the NLRC found petitioners’ claim "not supported by evidence" and consequently denied their motion for lack of merit. 10

    Petitioners then filed a petition for certiorari. Originally filed with this Court, the petition was referred to the Court of Appeals pursuant to the ruling in St. Martin Funeral Homes v. NLRC. 11 On March 11, 1999, the appeals court rendered a decision, the dispositive portion of which reads:chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    WHEREFORE, finding no reversible error on the part of the NLRC, the assailed decision and orders are hereby AFFIRMED with modification that in lieu of the order of reinstatement, a separation pay shall be awarded to private respondent to be computed at the rate of Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) for every month for every year of service. 12

    The Court of Appeals affirmed the NLRC’s holding that petitioners could not present their evidence on appeal for the first time. It further held that even considering their evidence, petitioners had failed to prove that respondent was responsible for the discrepancies between the premiums paid and the premiums remitted so as to justify her termination since no documents were presented by petitioners to substantiate the same. Petitioners moved for a reconsideration, but their motion was denied on July 20, 1999.

    Hence this petition. Petitioners argue that respondent was dismissed for cause, for loss of trust and confidence, and, therefore, should not have been granted separation pay.

    In support of their contention, petitioners cite evidence they presented before the National Labor Relations Commission in their memorandum on appeal and motion for reconsideration, consisting of the following: (1) petitioner EDI’s April 16, 1993 "notice of violation" to respondent, (2) respondent’s letter of resignation, (3) notice of hearing of April 28, 1993, (4) notice of hearing of April 29, 1993, (5) notice of hearing of May 6, 1993, (6) May 6, 1993 letter of petitioner EDI notifying respondent that her letter of resignation could not be considered pending results of the respondent’s investigation, and (7) May 20, 1993 notice of respondent’s termination. 13

    The issues in this case are (1) whether the NLRC correctly disregarded the evidence presented by petitioners on appeal on the ground that they failed to file their position paper before the Labor Arbiter and (2) whether considering such evidence, respondent was dismissed for cause, specifically, for loss of trust and confidence, and after due notice to her.

    With respect to the first question, the Labor Code provides:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    ARTICLE 221. Technical rules not binding and prior resort to amicable settlement. — In any proceeding before the Commission or any of the Labor Arbiters, the rules of evidence prevailing in courts of law or equity shall not be controlling and it is the spirit and intention of this Code that the Commission and its members and the Labor Arbiters shall use every and all reasonable means to ascertain the facts in each case speedily and objectively and without regard to technicalities of law or procedure, all in the interest of due process. . . .

    Accordingly, it has been settled that no undue sympathy is to be accorded to any claim of a procedural misstep in labor cases. Such cases must be decided according to justice and equity and the substantial merits of the controversy. 14 Thus, in Bristol Laboratories Employee’s Association v. NLRC, 15 the Court held that the NLRC did not commit grave abuse of its discretion in considering additional documentary evidence submitted by the employer on appeal to prove breach of trust and loss of confidence as bases for the dismissal of the petitioner in that case.

    In this case, petitioners not implausibly ascribed to the fault of their counsel their failure to file a position paper (which would have constituted their evidence) before the Labor Arbiter. Considering that respondent had also been given the opportunity (in the NLRC, Court of Appeals, and also here in this Court) to rebut petitioners’ evidence against her, the Court deems it best to admit such evidence and to decide this case on the merits.

    Considering, however, the evidence presented by petitioners on appeal, the Court finds the same to be insufficient in establishing that respondent was dismissed for loss of trust and confidence.

    At the outset, it should be stressed that in an unlawful dismissal case, the employer has the burden of proving the lawful cause for the employee’s dismissal. 16 Without sufficient proof of loss of confidence, an employee cannot be dismissed on this ground. 17 It was, therefore, error for both the NLRC and the Court of Appeals to disallow evidence on appeal which petitioners tried to present.

    In this case, there is no proof either of the amount collected by document analyst Mary Ann Samson and turned over to respondent or of the amount which respondent turned over to POEA liaison officer Ferdinand De la Cruz for eventual payment to the bonding company. Proof of these amounts is necessary so that it can be determined whether respondent was responsible for any defalcation. Petitioners simply alleged that respondent failed to account for P201,600.00 without showing how this figure was arrived at. According to petitioners, three individuals, namely, Mary Ann Samson, Ferdinand De la Cruz, and respondent Fermina D. Magsino, actually handled the money for payment of the premiums of the overseas contract workers’ bonds. It is, therefore, necessary for petitioners to show how much was turned over by Mary Ann Samson to respondent and how much the latter in turn turned over to Ferdinand De la Cruz. As the Court of Appeals aptly stated, "if there are no records to speak of, it follows that the discovered anomalies have no basis too." 18

    Nor can the Court of Appeals be faulted for ordering payment of separation pay in lieu of reinstatement. Indeed, if any party can complain against this feature of the decision of the Court of Appeals, it should be respondent, as employee, and not petitioners, who are the employers. The strain in the relationship between the parties, not to mention the length of time respondent has been out of petitioners’ employ, make an award of separation pay appropriate. 19 The grant of separation pay is of course to be understood as separate and in addition to the payment of backwages which, in accordance with the ruling in Bustamante v. NLRC, 20 should be computed from the time of respondent’s dismissal up to the time of finality of this decision and without any deduction and qualification.

    WHEREFORE, the decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals are AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that in addition to the grant of separation pay, respondent Fermina D. Magsino is awarded backwages, inclusive of allowances, and other benefits, including 13th month pay, which should be computed from the time of her dismissal up to the time of finality of this decision, without any deduction and qualification.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    SO ORDERED.

    Bellosillo, Quisumbing, Buena and De Leon, Jr., JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:



    1. Per Associate Justice Eloy R. Bello and concurred in by Associate Justices Salome A. Montoya and Ruben T. Reyes. Petition, Annex A; Rollo, pp. 21-27.

    2. Id., Annex B; id., pp. 28-29.

    3. Id., Annex C; id., p. 30.

    4. Id., Annex D; id., p. 31.

    5. Id., Annex E; id., p. 32.

    6. Id., Annex F; id., pp. 33-35.

    7. Id., Annex G; id., pp. 36-39.

    8. Id., Annex H; id., pp. 40-48.

    9. Rollo, p. 44.

    10. Petition, Annex I; Rollo, pp. 47-48.

    11. 295 SCRA 494 (1998).

    12. CA Decision, p. 6; Rollo, p. 27.

    13. Records, pp. 63-70.

    14. Lawin Security Services, Inc. v. NLRC (First Division), 273 SCRA 132 (1997).

    15. 187 SCRA 118 (1990). see also Philippine Telegraph and Telephone Corporation v. NLRC, 183 SCRA 451 (1990); Magna Rubber Manufacturing Corporation v. Drilon, 168 SCRA 727 (1988); Columbia Development Corporation v. Minister of Labor and Employment, 146 SCRA 421 (1986); Haverton Shipping Ltd. v. NLRC, 135 SCRA 685 (1985).

    16. Farrol v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 133259, Feb. 10, 2000.

    17. Benguet Corporation v. NLRC, 318 SCRA 106 (1999); Cocoland Development Corporation v. NLRC, 259 SCRA 51 (1996).

    18. CA Decision, p. 5; Rollo, p. 26.

    19. Jardine Davies, Inc. v. NLRC, 311 SCRA 289 (1999).

    20. 265 SCRA 61 (1996).

    G.R. No. 139430   June 20, 2001 - EDI STAFF BUILDERS INTERNATIONAL v. FERMINA D. MAGSINO


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