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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
 

   
September-2003 Jurisprudence                 

  • A.M. No. P-03-1705 September 2, 2003 - BALDOMERO DE VERA SOLIMAN, JR. v. PRINCESITO D. SORIANO

  • G.R. No. 138238 September 2, 2003 - EDUARDO BALITAOSAN v. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION, CULTURE AND SPORTS

  • G.R. No. 146980 September 2, 2003 - LUZ E. TAGANAS, ET AL. v. MELITON G. EMUSLAN, ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 3967 September 3, 2003 - ARTEMIO ENDAYA v. WILFREDO OCA

  • A.C. No. 6084 September 3, 2003 - FELICITAS BERBANO v. WENCESLAO BARCELONA

  • A.M. No. 02-10-614-RTC September 3, 2003 - RE: EDITORIAL OF THE NEGROS CHRONICLE AND OTHER CHARGES OF A CONCERNED CITIZEN AGAINST JUDGE ROGELIO CARAMPATAN

  • A.M. No. OCA-01-6 September 3, 2003 - DOMINADOR V. ASPIRAS v. ESMERALDA ABALOS

  • A.M. No. P-01-1466 September 3, 2003 - EDUARDO F. BAGO v. JOEL FERAREN

  • A.M. No. RTJ-99-1501 September 3, 2003 - ROMEO E. EJERCITO v. ILDEFONSO B. SUERTE

  • G.R. No. 131915 September 3, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDDIE LACHICA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 136274 September 3, 2003 - SUNFLOWER NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139400 September 3, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MAURICIO WATIWAT

  • G.R. No. 140652 September 3, 2003 - OLIVERIO LAPERAL v. PABLO V. OCAMPO

  • G.R. No. 144312 September 3, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CHUA TAN LEE

  • G.R. No. 145737 September 3, 2003 - CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION v. EVELYN P. CAYOBIT

  • G.R. No. 149617 September 3, 2003 - MARIANO JOAQUIN S. MACIAS v. MARGIE CORPUS MACIAS

  • G.R. No. 141527 September 4, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RANDY G. BOCALAN

  • A.M. No. RTJ-03-1788 September 5, 2003 - JORGE F. ABELLA v. FRANCISCO L. CALINGIN

  • A.M. No. MTJ-02-1430 September 8, 2003 - ROMEO B. SENSON v. HERIBERTO M. PANGILINAN

  • G.R. No. 128296 September 8, 2003 - NASIPIT LUMBER CO., ET AL. v. NATIONAL WAGES AND PRODUCTIVITY COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 152957 September 8, 2003 - FAUSTINO ESQUIVEL v. EDUARDO REYES

  • A.M. No. MTJ-03-1480 September 10, 2003 - TRINIDAD CABAHUG v. JASPER JESSE G. DACANAY

  • G.R. No. 91486 September 10, 2003 - ALBERTO G. PINLAC, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107271 September 10, 2003 - CITY OF CALOOCAN, ET AL. v. MAURO T. ALLARDE, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 125329 September 10, 2003 - ANN BRIGITT LEONARDO, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140762 September 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROGER C. ROXAS

  • G.R. No. 148912 September 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. TIMOTEO ESCARLOS

  • G.R. No. 151212 September 10, 2003 - TEN FORTY REALTY AND DEVELOPMENT CORP. v. MARINA CRUZ

  • A.M. No. P-02-1562 September 11, 2003 - ROMULO SG. VILLANUEVA v. CHARLIE C. LARCENA

  • A.M. No. RTJ-02-1742 September 11, 2003 - AVELINA MADULA v. RUTH CRUZ SANTOS

  • G.R. Nos. 136286-89 September 11, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EFREN G. DE TAZA

  • G.R. No. 138366 September 11, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RUBEN CAÑETE, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138569 September 11, 2003 - CONSOLIDATED BANK and TRUST CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144785 September 11, 2003 - YOLANDA GARCIA v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.

  • G.R. No. 145407 September 11, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LEONITO HEREVESE

  • G.R. No. 151081 September 11, 2003 - TOP RATE CONSTRUCTION & GENERAL SERVICES v. PAXTON DEV’T. CORP., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 153126 September 11, 2003 - MONTEREY FOODS CORP., ET AL. v. VICTORINO E. ESERJOSE

  • G.R. No. 153845 September 11, 2003 - EFREN P. SALVAN v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-03-1799 September 12, 2003 - MARIA CRISTINA OLONDRIZ PERTIERRA v. ALBERTO L. LERMA

  • G.R. No. 127206 September 12, 2003 - PERLA PALMA GIL v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 135029 September 12, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NESTOR CARRIAGA

  • G.R. No. 141600 September 12, 2003 - ROBERTO FULGENCIO, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144639 September 12, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BENNY GO

  • G.R. Nos. 144972-73 September 12, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODOLFO JUNAS

  • G.R. No. 133365 September 16, 2003 - PLATINUM TOURS AND TRAVEL, INC. v. JOSE M. PANLILIO

  • G.R. Nos. 147814-15 September 16, 2003 - RAUL ZAPATOS v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.

  • G.R. No. 155278 September 16, 2003 - PRUDENCIO J. TANJUAN v. PHIL. POSTAL SAVINGS BANK

  • A.M. No. P-03-1740 September 17, 2003 - FRANKLIN Q. SUSA v. TEOFILA A. PEÑA

  • A.M. No. RTJ-01-1656 September 17, 2003 - EDGARDO D. BALSAMO v. PEDRO L. SUAN

  • G.R. No. 141120 September 17, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FERNANDO BUENAVIDEZ

  • G.R. No. 146125 September 17, 2003 - NOVELTY PHIL., INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1347 September 18, 2003 - BENJAMIN TUDTUD v. MAMERTO Y. COLIFLORES

  • A.M. No. P-00-1370 September 18, 2003 - ALEJANDRO PAREDES, ET AL. v. JERRY MARCELINO

  • A.M. No. P-01-1510 September 18, 2003 - MARY ANN PADUGANAN-PEÑARANDA v. GRACE L. SONGCUYA

  • A.M. No. P-03-1691 September 18, 2003 - JOSE S. SAÑEZ v. CARLOS B. RABINA

  • A.M. No. P-03-1703 September 18, 2003 - EDNA FE F. AQUINO v. JOSE R. MARTIN

  • A.M. No. P-03-1724 September 18, 2003 - VICENTE ALVAREZ, Jr. v. JOSE R. MARTIN

  • A.M. No. P-03-1742 September 18, 2003 - SALVADOR L. BERNABE v. WINSTON T. EGUIA

  • G.R. No. 135559 September 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MORENO OCUMEN

  • G.R. No. 135563 September 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BOBBY P. SANCHEZ

  • G.R. No. 144913 September 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF PHIL. v. GERONIMO C. CENIZA

  • G.R. No. 149627 September 18, 2003 - KENNETH O. NADELA v. CITY OF CEBU, ET AL..

  • G.R. No. 152351 September 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JAMIL MALA

  • G.R. No. 152604 September 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LEONCIO S.PEDRIGAL

  • G.R. No. 153571 September 18, 2003 - BENGUET MANAGEMENT CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 156259 September 18, 2003 - GROGUN, INC. v. NAPOCOR

  • G.R. No. 157957 September 18, 2003 - CHARITO NAVAROSA v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142974 September 22, 2003 - SPS. SHEM G. ALFARERO and AURELIA TAGALOG v. SPS. PETRA and SANCHO SEVILLA

  • G.R. No. 152529 September 22, 2003 - SPS. HENDRIK and ALICIA S. BIESTERBOS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-02-1450 September 23, 2003 - RAMIRO S. DE JOYA v. AUGUSTUS C. DIAZ

  • A.M. No. MTJ-03-1509 September 23, 2003 - HELEN GAMBOA-MIJARES v. MANUEL Q. LIMSIACO, JR., ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-03-1732 September 23, 2003 - ROSENINA O. UY, ET AL. v. LOLITA R. EDILO

  • G.R. No. 123140 September 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BERNARDO CORTEZANO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 135446 September 23, 2003 - COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. BPI

  • G.R. No. 136729 September 23, 2003 - ASTRO ELECTRONICS CORP., ET AL. v. PHIL. EXPORT AND FOREIGN LOAN GUARANTEE CORP.

  • G.R. Nos. 138716-19 September 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JOSE PILLAS

  • G.R. No. 138725 September 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALBERTO OLIVAR

  • G.R. No. 139360 September 23, 2003 - HLC CONSTRUCTION AND DEV’T. CORP., ET AL. v. EHSHA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140982 September 23, 2003 - MARIO GUTIERREZ v. SINGER SEWING MACHINE COMPANY, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 141434 September 23, 2003 - ANTONIO LO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143132 September 23, 2003 - VAN MELLE PHILS. ET AL. v. VICTOR M. ENDAYA

  • G.R. No. 144533 September 23, 2003 - JIMMY L. BARNES v. TERESITA C. REYES, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 146786-88 September 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANDRES T. DAÑO

  • G.R. No. 149295 September 23, 2003 - PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK v. GENEROSO DE JESUS

  • G.R. No. 149370 September 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARTIN ALEJO

  • G.R. No. 150905 September 23, 2003 - CITIBANK v. EFREN S. TEODORO

  • G.R. No. 151072 September 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FELIPE NATIVIDAD, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 151931 September 23, 2003 - ANAMER SALAZAR v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 152823-24 September 23, 2003 - RUFINA CHUA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 152998 September 23, 2003 - SIMON Q. AÑONUEVO, JR., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 156295 September 23, 2003 - MARCELO R. SORIANO v. SPS. RICARDO and ROSALINA GALIT

  • G.R. No. 156983 September 23, 2003 - In the Matter of the Application for the Habeas Corpus of JOSE VICTOR RIGOR y DANAO v. The Superintendent

  • A.M. No. P-00-1418 September 24, 2003 - OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. CELESTINA B. CORPUZ

  • G.R. No. 124293 September 24, 2003 - JG SUMMIT HOLDINGS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130087 September 24, 2003 - DIANA M. BARCELONA v. CA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 136726 September 24, 2003 - PANFILO V. VILLARUEL v. REYNALDO D. FERNANDO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 148924 September 24, 2003 - TOYOTA MOTOR PHILS. v. CA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 153781 September 24, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MATEO GREGORIO, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 153885 & 156214 September 24, 2003 - LEPANTO CONSOLIDATED MINING CO. v. WMC RESOURCES INTERNATIONAL PTY. LTD.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-03-1746 September 26, 2003 - ROGER F. BORJA v. ZORAYDA H. SALCEDO

  • G.R. No. 130330 September 26, 2003 - FERNANDO GO v. MICHAEL TAN and LOLITA TAN

  • G.R. No. 141217 September 26, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EUSEBIO DUBAN

  • G.R. No. 144037 September 26, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NOEL P. TUDTUD, ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 5480 September 29, 2003 - LEILANI OCAMPO-INGCOCO, ET AL. v. ALEJANDRO G. YRREVERRE, JR.

  • G.R. Nos. 137370-71 September 29, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAUL OCO

  • G.R. No. 139185 September 29, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALFONSO RIVERA

  • G.R. No. 148902 September 29, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANILO ANDRADE

  • G.R. No. 149718 September 29, 2003 - MARIO VALEROSO v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.

  • G.R. No. 152057 September 29, 2003 - PT & T CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 5854 September 30, 2003 - NORA E. MIWA v. RENE O. MEDINA

  • G.R. No. 127593 September 30, 2003 - CLARA C. DE LA CRUZ, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 136742-43 September 30, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANILO Y. ALFARO

  • G.R. Nos. 140514-15 September 30, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JUNE IGNAS

  • G.R. No. 142751 September 30, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODRIGO OPELIÑA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143010 September 30, 2003 - MIGUEL DANOFRATA v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.

  • G.R. No. 144230 September 30, 2003 - ARTURO G. MACKAY v. ADORACION G. ANGELES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 148332 September 30, 2003 - NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT COMPANY v. MADRIGAL WAN HAI LINES CORP.

  •  





     
     

    G.R. No. 153126   September 11, 2003 - MONTEREY FOODS CORP., ET AL. v. VICTORINO E. ESERJOSE

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    FIRST DIVISION

    [G.R. No. 153126. September 11, 2003.]

    MONTEREY FOODS CORP. and RAMON F. LLANOS, Petitioners, v. VICTORINO E. ESERJOSE, and the Branch Sheriff assigned to the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 224, National Capital Judicial Region, Respondents.

    D E C I S I O N


    YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:


    This is a petition for review seeking to reverse and set aside the decision 1 of the Court of Appeals dated November 21, 2001, which upheld the Orders of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 224 in Civil Case No. Q-98-36421. 2

    It is alleged in the petition that for a period of twelve years, respondent bought from petitioner Monterey Foods Corporation live cattle and hogs which he in turn sold and distributed to his customers. The transactions were covered by invoices and delivery receipts and were payable within ten days from invoice date. Due to respondent’s inability to pay for his purchases, his overdue account amounted to P87,434,689.37, and as a consequence, petitioner corporation ceased its transactions with Respondent.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    Sometime in 1998, during the existence of the contractual relations between the parties, they entered into a contract growing agreement whereby petitioner corporation supplied livestock for respondent to grow, care for and nurture in his farm located in San Jose, Batangas. After five months of operation, petitioner corporation withdrew from the contract without paying respondent for his services, alleging that respondent failed to post the requisite bond under the contract and poorly performed his farm management functions to the detriment of the animals.

    Respondent repeatedly demanded that petitioner corporation pay him for his services under the contract, amounting to P1,280,000.00. His demands went unheeded; thus, he filed with the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 224, an action for sum of money and damages against petitioner corporation and its President, petitioner Ramon F. Llanes, which was docketed as Civil Case No. Q-98-36421. 3 After petitioners filed their Joint Answer, the case was scheduled for pre-trial conference on May 14, 1999.

    At the pre-trial conference, petitioners and their counsel failed to appear, and an Order was issued declaring them as in default and allowing respondent to present evidence ex parte. 4 On May 24, 1999, the trial court rendered judgment, the dispositive portion of which reads:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    WHEREFORE, premises considered, judgment is hereby rendered in favor of the plaintiff and against the defendants ordering the latter to pay the former the following:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    1. P1,280,000.00 representing the principal obligation;

    2. P100,000.00, jointly and severally, as damages; and

    3. P50,000.00 as attorney’s fees.

    IT IS SO ORDERED. 5

    Petitioners filed a motion for new trial, 6 which the trial court granted. 7 Hence, the case was again set for pre-trial conference and both parties submitted their respective pre-trial briefs. 8

    After the pre-trial, respondent submitted a manifestation and motion alleging that petitioners have admitted their liability under the contract growing agreement at least to the extent of P482,766.88 when they alleged in their Joint Answer: "In accordance with the standard contract growing fee provision plaintiff [respondent herein] was entitled to a compensation of net P482,766.88." 9 Respondent thus prayed that reverse trial be conducted. 10

    Petitioners opposed the manifestation and motion, stating that the reverse trial order has no basis since the amount allegedly admitted was dramatically less than the total of P1,280,000.00 claimed by Respondent. 11

    At the initial hearing of the case, petitioners confirmed in open court that they indeed entered into a contract growing agreement with respondent and that the latter was entitled to a net compensation of P482,766.88 under the said contract. 12 The trial court, acting on petitioners’ judicial admission, rendered partial summary judgment insofar as the amount of P482,766.88 was concerned, and set the case for trial for the presentation of evidence on petitioners’ claim for damages. 13 Respondent moved for the execution of the partial summary judgment, which the trial court granted.

    Petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration, which was denied for lack of merit. 14 Accordingly, on December 15, 1999, the trial court issued a writ of execution directing the sheriff to cause the execution of the partial summary decision. 15

    On December 17, 1999, petitioners filed a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals, docketed as CA-G.R. SP No. 56305. 16 On November 21, 2001, the Court of Appeals dismissed the petition. 17 Petitioners’ motion for reconsideration was likewise denied for lack of merit. 18

    Petitioners are now before us assigning the following errors:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    A.

    WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A CLEAR AND REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT SANCTIONED THE WRIT OF EXECUTION ISSUED BY THE TRIAL COURT OF A PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT WHICH WAS NOT YET FINAL IN CHARACTER.

    B.

    WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A CLEAR AND REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT UPHELD THE WRIT OF EXECUTION OF THE PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT ISSUED ON AN EX-PARTE MOTION THAT DENIED PETITIONER AN OPPORTUNITY TO BE HEARD.

    C.

    WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A CLEAR AND REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT UPHELD THE WRIT OF EXECUTION OF THE PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT ISSUED ON THE BASIS THAT A BOND IS SUFFICIENT REASON FOR DISCRETIONARY EXECUTION TO ISSUE.

    D.

    WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A CLEAR AND REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT UPHELD THE WRIT OF EXECUTION ON THE BASIS OF A PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT THAT IS PATENTLY INVALID.

    E.

    WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A CLEAR AND REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT UPHELD THE PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT THAT WAS RENDERED IN DISPARAGEMENT OF DUE PROCESS.

    F.

    WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A CLEAR AND REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT UPHELD THE TRIAL COURT’S PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT ISSUED ON THE BASIS THAT THERE ARE NO GENUINE TRIABLE ISSUES OF FACT.

    G.

    WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A CLEAR AND REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT SANCTIONED THE DEPARTURE OF THE TRIAL COURT FROM THE ACCEPTED AND USUAL COURSE OF JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS. 19

    Simply put, the primordial question to be resolved hinges on whether summary judgment is proper in the case at bar.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    A summary judgment or accelerated judgment is a procedural technique to promptly dispose of cases where the facts appear undisputed and certain from the pleadings, depositions, admissions and affidavits on record, or for weeding out sham claims or defenses at an early stage of the litigation to avoid the expense and loss of time involved in a trial. Its object is to separate what is formal or pretended in denial or averment from what is genuine and substantial so that only the latter may subject a party in interest to the burden of trial. 20 Moreover, said summary judgment must be premised on the absence of any other triable genuine issues of fact. 21 Otherwise, the movant cannot be allowed to obtain immediate relief. A "genuine issue" is such issue of fact which requires presentation of evidence as distinguished from a sham, fictitious, contrived or false claim. 22

    Rule 35, Section 3 of the Rules of Court provides two (2) requisites for summary judgment to be proper: (1) there must be no genuine issue as to any material fact, except for the amount of damages; and (2) the party presenting the motion for summary judgment must be entitled to a judgment as a matter of law. 23

    Applying these principles to the case at bar, we find that the Court of Appeals did not commit any reversible error in affirming the assailed orders of the trial court. Hence, the instant petition must be denied.

    The record shows that at the hearing on November 25, 1999, petitioners admitted liability under the contract growing agreement in the amount of P482,766.88. 24 As a result, respondent agreed to waive all his other claims in the complaint, including his claim for consequential damages. 25 Correspondingly, insofar as the complaint was concerned, there was no other genuine issue left for which the complaint for sum of money and damages may be prosecuted. Also by reason of such admission, Petitioners, in effect, likewise waived whatever defenses they may have to deter recovery by respondent under the said contract. Thus, respondent became entitled, as a matter of law, to the execution of the partial summary judgment. When there are no genuine issues of fact to be tried, the Rules of Court allows a party to obtain immediate relief by way of summary judgment. In short, since the facts are not in dispute, the court is allowed to decide the case summarily by applying the law to the material facts. 26

    Clearly, the judgment finally disposed of all the reliefs sought in the complaint. The order granting summary judgment was akin to a judgment on the merits made after a full-blown trial. Its consequent execution, therefore, may issue as a matter of right in favor of respondent unless appeal was seasonably made therein, which petitioners failed to do. Instead of filing a notice of appeal with the trial court, petitioners elevated the matter to the Court of Appeals via petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, which is not a substitute for the lost remedy of appeal.

    Petitioners maintain that the order granting partial summary judgment was merely interlocutory in nature and did not dispose of the action in its entirety. They cite the doctrines laid down in Province of Pangasinan v. Court of Appeals 27 and Guevarra v. Court of Appeals, 28 where the Court categorically stated that a partial summary judgment is not a final or appealable judgment.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    Petitioners’ position is untenable.

    The rulings in Province of Pangasinan and Guevarra is not applicable in the case at bar. The said cases specifically delved on the appeal of a partial summary judgment, which did not dispose of all the reliefs sought in the complaint. In the case at bar, other than the admitted liability of petitioners to respondents under the contract growing agreement, all other reliefs sought under the complaint had already been expressly waived by respondent before the trial court. Accordingly, the assailed November 25, 1999 Order of the trial court which granted partial summary judgment in favor of respondent was in the nature of a final order which leaves nothing more for the court to adjudicate in respect to the complaint. In Santo Tomas University Hospital v. Surla, 29 the Court distinguished a final judgment or order from an interlocutory issuance in this wise:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    The concept of a final judgment or order, distinguished from an interlocutory issuance, is that the former decisively puts to a close, or disposes of a case or a disputed issue leaving nothing else to be done by the court in respect thereto. Once that judgment or order is rendered, the adjudicative task of the court is likewise ended on the particular matter involved. An order is interlocutory, upon the other hand, if its effects would only be provisional in character and would still leave substantial proceedings to be further had by the issuing court in order to put the controversy to rest.

    We are not unmindful of petitioners’ counterclaim. However, our cursory evaluation of the same fails to convince us that the issues raised therein are closely related to or intertwined with the growing contract agreement. The issues raised therein clearly involved transactions distinct and separate from the growing contract agreement; they refer to the alleged obligations of respondent under their separate contract for the sale and distribution of cattle and hogs. As such, these are in the nature of permissive counterclaims which can be litigated independently of the main complaint.

    Petitioners also argue that they were denied an opportunity to be heard on the motion to execute the summary judgment; and that the summary judgment was rendered in disregard of due process.

    The argument is not well-taken.

    A party cannot successfully invoke deprivation of due process if he was accorded the opportunity of a hearing, through either oral arguments or pleadings. 30 Contrary to petitioners’ claims, the record shows that petitioners were duly represented by counsel when the motion for summary judgment as well as the execution of the same were heard by the trial court. Petitioners’ counsel did not register any opposition to respondent’s oral motion for summary judgment, saying that under the Rules of Court it should be furnished a written motion for summary judgment at least 10 days before it is heard. We find, however, that the absence of the written notice did not divest the trial court of authority to pass on the merits of the motion made in open court. The order of the court granting the motion for summary judgment and its execution thereof despite absence of a notice of hearing, or proof of service thereof, is merely an irregularity in the proceedings. It cannot deprive the court of its authority to pass on the merits of the motion. The remedy of the aggrieved party in such cases is either to have the order set aside or the irregularity otherwise cured by the court, or to appeal from the final judgment, and not thru certiorari. 31

    In fact, the counsel for petitioners actively participated in disposing of the reliefs prayed for in the complaint when he sought the reduction in respondent’s claim to P482,766.88. Besides, we find from the records that petitioners expressly agreed to the summary judgment 32 and to the execution of the same after respondent posts a bond in an amount fixed by the court. 33 In short, petitioners were never deprived of their day in court. Thus, they cannot now be allowed to claim that they were denied due process. The Rules of Court should be liberally construed in order to promote their objective of securing a just, speedy and inexpensive disposition of every action and proceeding. 34

    Thus, in Ley Construction and Development Corporation v. Union Bank of the Philippines, 35 it was held:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Admittedly, there is nothing in the records which indicates that Judge Arcangel conducted a hearing before he resolved respondent’s motion for summary judgment. Nevertheless, as explained in Carcon Development Corporation v. Court of Appeals, in proceedings for summary judgment, the court is merely expected to act chiefly on the basis of what is in the records of the case and that the hearing contemplated in the Rules is not de riguer as its purpose is merely to determine whether the issues are genuine or not, and not to receive evidence on the issues set up in the pleadings.

    . . . . In view of the fact that they admitted having incurred the obligation which is the basis of the complaint, a hearing would have served no pertinent purpose. The records already provide sufficient basis for the court to resolve respondent’s motion. Thus, we find that even if the trial court did not conduct a hearing, this fact would not affect the validity of the summary judgment rendered by Judge Arcangel.

    Neither does the fact that respondent’s motion to resolve its motion for summary judgment was filed ex parte affect the validity of Judge Arcangel’s resolution. The requirement in Rule 35, 3 that the opposing party be furnished a copy of the motion 10 days before the time specified for the hearing applies to the motion for summary judgment itself and not to the motion to resolve such motion. . . . . Thus, it could not be said that they were deprived of the opportunity to question the motion.

    WHEREFORE, in view of all the foregoing, the instant petition for review is DENIED for lack of merit. The assailed decision of the Court of Appeals dated November 21, 2001 in CA-G.R. SP No. 56305, which affirmed the Orders of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 224, directing the execution of partial summary judgment in Civil Case No. Q-98-36421, is AFFIRMED.chanrob1es virtua1 law library

    SO ORDERED.

    Davide, Jr., C.J., Vitug and Carpio, JJ., concur.

    Azcuna, J., on official leave.

    Endnotes:



    1. Penned by Associate Justice Eubulo G. Verzola, concurred in by Associate Justices Rodrigo V. Cosico and Eliezer R. De Los Santos.

    2. Rollo, pp. 96–99; penned by Judge Emilio L. Leachon, Jr.

    3. Rollo, pp. 100–103.

    4. Rollo, p. 133.

    5. Id., p. 131.

    6. Id., pp. 134–152.

    7. Id., pp. 157–160.

    8. RTC Record, Vol. I, p. 214.

    9. Joint Answer, p. 9, par. (c); Rollo, p. 113.

    10. Rollo, p. 161.

    11. Id., p. 167.

    12. TSN, 25 November 1999, p. 66.

    13. Supra, note 2; TSN, 25 November 1999, pp. 73–74.

    14. Supra, note 3.

    15. Supra, note 4.

    16. Rollo, pp. 65–95.

    17. Id., pp. 57–64.

    18. Id., p. 256.

    19. Petition, pp. 11–12; Rollo, pp. 18–19.

    20. Spouses Agbada v. Inter-Urban Developers, Inc., Et Al., G.R. No. 144029, 19 September 2002, citing Excelsa Industries, Inc. v. CA, 317 Phil. 664 (1995).

    21. Solidbank Corporation v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 120010, 3 October 2002.

    22. Manufacturer’s Hanover Trust Co. and/or Chemical Bank v. Guerrero, G.R. No. 136804, 19 February 2003.

    23. Solidbank Corporation v. Court of Appeals, supra.

    24. TSN, 25 November 1999, p. 66.

    25. TSN, 25 November 1999, pp. 27–29.

    26. Supra, note 26.

    27. G.R. No. 104266, 31 March 1993, 220 SCRA 726.

    28. G.R. Nos. L-49017 and L-49024, 30 August 1983, 124 SCRA 297.

    29. 355 Phil. 804, 811 (1998).

    30. Alauya, Jr. v. COMELEC, G.R. Nos. 152151-52, 22 January 2003; See Rule 15, Section 2 of the Rules of Court provides: All motions shall be in writing except those made in open court or in the course of a hearing or trial.

    31. See Galvez v. CA, G.R. No. 114046, 24 October 1994, 237 SCRA 685, 698, citing People, Et. Al. v. Vergara, etc., Et Al., G.R. Nos. 101557-58, 28 April 1993, 221 SCRA 560, 570–571.

    32. TSN, 25 November 1999, pp. 42–50.

    33. TSN, 25 November 1999, pp. 68–69.

    34. Section 6, Rule 1 of the Rules of Court.

    35. 389 Phil. 788, 799 (2000).

    G.R. No. 153126   September 11, 2003 - MONTEREY FOODS CORP., ET AL. v. VICTORINO E. ESERJOSE


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