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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
 

   
November-2006 Jurisprudence                 

  • A.C. No. 6266 - ESTELA ANASTACIO-BRIONES vs ATTY. ALFREDO A. ZAPANTA

  • A.C. No. 7123 - MARIA DIVINA CRUZ-VILLANUEVA vs ATTY. CARLOS P. RIVERA, ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 7214 - AILEEN A. FERANCULLO vs ATTY. SANCHO M. FERANCULLO, JR.

  • A.C. No. 6266 - ESTELA ANASTACIO-BRIONES vs ATTY. ALFREDO A. ZAPANTA

  • A.C. No. 7123 - MARIA DIVINA CRUZ-VILLANUEVA vs ATTY. CARLOS P. RIVERA, ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 7214 - AILEEN A. FERANCULLO vs ATTY. SANCHO M. FERANCULLO, JR.

  • A.C. No. 6266 - ESTELA ANASTACIO-BRIONES vs ATTY. ALFREDO A. ZAPANTA

  • A.C. No. 7123 - MARIA DIVINA CRUZ-VILLANUEVA vs ATTY. CARLOS P. RIVERA, ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 7214 - AILEEN A. FERANCULLO vs ATTY. SANCHO M. FERANCULLO, JR.

  • Adm. Case No. 7252 - CBD 05-1434 - JOHNNY NG vs ATTY. BENJAMIN C. ALAR

  • A.C. No. 7280 - DAHLIA S. GACIAS vs ATTY. ALEXANDER BULAUITAN

  • A.M. No. 06-4-219-RTC - RE: REPORT ON THE JUDICIAL AUDIT AND PHYSICAL INVENTORY

  • A.M. No. 2004-15-SC - PROSECUTOR AGAPITO B. ROSALES vs ENGR. CELERINO BUENAVENTURA

  • A.M. No. 2005-26-SC - RE: LOST CHECKS ISSUED TO THE LATE RODERICK ROY P. MELLIZA, ETC.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-03-1503 - NATIONAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION vs JUDGE LUISITO T. ADAOAG

  • A.M. No. MTJ-06-1660 - Formerly A.M. No. OCA IPI 04-1519-MTJ - SPOUSES TREFIL AND LINA A. UMALE vs JUDGE NICOLAS V. FADUL, JR.

  • A.M. No. P-03-1731 - PNB MANAGEMENT AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION vs CARMELO CACHERO

  • A.M. No. P-03-1737 - Formerly OCA IPI No. 01-1250-P - NICOLAS PACLIBAR vs RENAN V. PAMPOSA

  • A.M. No. P-05-2092 - ATTY. PERFECTO A.S. LAGUIO, JR. vs MILA AMANTE-CASICAS

  • A.M. No. P-05-1979 - JUDGE LEONARDO P. CARREON vs ERIC ANTHONY S. ORTEGA

  • A.M. No. P-06-2109 - LIGAYA V. REYES vs MARIO PABLICO

  • A.M. No. P-06-2204 - NYDIA S. SERVINO vs MA. MAWILYNN CONCEPCION B. ADOLFO

  • A.M. No. P-06-2266 - ENCARNACION FLORES vs ROMEO S. GATCHECO, JR.

  • A.M. No. P-06-2257 - SPS. ARTHUR and LEONORA STILGROVE vs ERIBERTO R. SABAS, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-06-2268 - BIENVENIDO L. PUNZALAN vs RUMEL M. MACALISANG

  • A.M. No. RTJ-05-1901 - FORTUNE LIFE INSURANCE, COMPANY, INC. vs JUDGE JIMMY H. F. LUCZON, JR.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-06-2002 - ROCKLAND CONSTRUCTION CO., INC. vs JUDGE MARIANO M. SINGZON, JR.

  • G.R. No. 74269 & 92137 - SOLID HOMES, INC., ET AL. vs HON. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127636 - E. ROMMEL REALTY AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, ET AL. vs STA. LUCIA REALTY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION

  • G.R. No. 126890 - UNITED PLANTERS SUGAR MILLING COMPANY, INC. vs COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129820 - PNOC-ENERGY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION vs EMILIANO G. VENERACION, JR.

  • G.R. No. 132834 - RUPERTO LUCERO, JR., ET AL. vs CITY GOVERNMENT OF PASIG

  • G.R. No. 135817 - REYNALDO RODRIGUEZ, ET AL. vs CONCORDIA ONG LIM, ET AL.

  • G.R. NOS. 140371-72 - DY YIENG SEANGIO, ET AL. vs AMOR A. REYES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140833 - LACEPI T. MAGNANAO vs PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 141480 - CARLOS B. DE GUZMAN vs TOYOTA CUBAO, INC.

  • G.R. No. 142351 - ST. MARTIN FUNERAL HOMES vs NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143219 - ASIAN TERMINALS, INC. vs RENATO P. VILLANUEVA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143382 - SECURITY BANK and TRUST COMPANY vs MAR TIERRA CORPORATION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144062 - THE BASES CONVERSION AND DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY, ET AL. vs ELPIDIO UY

  • G.R. No. 146707 - ERNESTO DUMLAO, JR., ET AL. vs RODOLFO PONFERRADA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 148090 - STRONGHOLD INSURANCE COMPANY, INC. vs NEMESIO S. FELIX, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 148490 - 7K CORPORATION vs NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. NOS. 148500-01 - TIMES TRANSPORTATION CO. INC. vs NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. NOS. 148839-40 - NAGKAHIUSANG MAMUMUO SA PICOP RESOURCES, INC. - SOUTHERN PHILIPPINES FEDERATION OF LABOR (NAMAPRI - SPFL), ET AL. vs COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 148971 - ALBERTO GARONG vs PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 149633 - EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR GABRIEL S. CASAL, ET AL. v. COMMISSION ON AUDIT

  • G.R. No. 149748 - JANG LIM, ET AL vs COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 149753 - Miguel Cosme, Jr. v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. NO. 149764 - PHILIPPINE OVERSEAS TELECOMMUNICATIONS CORPORATION vs ENRIQUE GUTIERREZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 150253 - DAVAO LIGHT AND POWER CORPORATION, INC. vs ANTONIO G. DIAZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 150402 - EPARWA SECURITY AND JANITORIAL SERVICES, INC. vs LICEO DE CAGAYAN UNIVERSITY

  • G.R. No. 152258 - ROGELIO P. ANTALAN vs ANIANO DESIERTO

  • G.R. No. 152984 - WILLIAM G. KWONG vs ATTY. RAMON GARGANTOS, ET AL.

  • G.R. NO. 154006 - STAR PAPER CORPORATION vs CARLITO ESPIRI TU, ET AL.

  • G.R. NO. 154565 - REMEDIOS RAMOS vs TESSIE PABAS

  • G.R. No. 154685 - METROPOLITAN BANK and TRUST COMPANY, ET AL. vs COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 155645 - PHILIPPINE LONG DISTANCE TELEPHONE COMPANY, INC. vs MAYFLOR T. YLAGAN

  • G.R. No. 155574 - TIMOTEO A. GARCIA vs SANDIGANBAYAN

  • G.R. No. 156294 - MELVA THERESA ALVIAR GONZALES vs RIZAL COMMERCIAL BANKING CORPORATION

  • G. R. No. 156888 - PEDRO R. SANTIAGO vs SUBIC BAY METROPOLITAN AUTHORITY

  • G.R. No. 156903 - SPOUSES CARLOS and TERESITA RUSTIA vs EMERITA RIVERA

  • G.R. No. 157107 - ALPINE LENDING INVESTORS, ET AL. vs ESTRELLA CORPUZ

  • G.R. No. 157117 - COASTAL SUBIC BAY TERMINAL, INC. vs DEPARTMENT OF LABOR and EMPLOYMENT, ET AL.

  • G.R. NOS. 157236-45 - ROMEO D. LONZANIDA vs SANDIGANBAYAN

  • G.R. No. 157906 - JOAQUINITA P. CAPILI vs SPS. DOMINADOR CARDAÑA and ROSALITA CARDAÑA,

  • G.R. No. 158676 - BPI-FAMILY SAVINGS BANK, INC. vs SPS. ZENAIDA DOMINGO & ABUNDIO S. DOMINGO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 158707 - COMMUNITY RURAL BANK OF SAN ISIDRO (N.E.), INC. vs YSAGANI V. PAEZ

  • G.R. NOS. 157294-95 - JOSEPH VICTOR G. EJERCITO vs SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 158960 - LORNA FRANCES FILIPINO vs F. WALTER R. MACABUHAY

  • G.R. No. 159373 - JOSE R. MORENO, JR. vs PRIVATE MANAGEMENT OFFICE

  • G.R. No. 159991 - CARMELINO F. PANSACOLA vs COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE

  • G.R. No. 159734 and G.R. NO. 159745 - ROSARIO V. ASTUDILLO vs PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 160347 - ARCADIO and MARIA LUISA CARANDANG vs HEIRS OF QUIRINO A. DE GUZMAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 160618 - DENNIS D. SY vs METROPOLITAN BANK & TRUST COMPANY

  • G.R. No. 160805 - SPOUSES ADIEL DE LA CENA and CARIDAD AREVALO DE LA CENA vs SPOUSES JOSE BRIONES and HERMINIA LLEDO BRIONES

  • G.R. No. 161086 - CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION vs COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 161136 - WILFREDO VAGILIDAD, ET AL. vs GABINO VAGILIDAD, JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 161115 - DOLE PHILIPPINES, INC. vs MEDEL ESTEVA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 162037 - Heirs of Enrique Diaz v. Elinor A. Virata

  • G.R. No. 162243, G.R. No. 164516 & G.R. No. 171875 - HEHERSON ALVAREZ vs PICOP RESOURCES, INC.

  • G.R. No. 162308 - G & M PHILIPPINES, INC. vs ROMIL V. CUAMBOT

  • G.R. No. 162331 - LEPANTO CONSOLIDATED MINING CO. vs WMC RESOURCES INT L. PTY. LTD., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 162366 - FEDERICA M. SERRANO, ET AL. vs SPOUSES ANSELMO GUTIERREZ AND CARMELITA GUTIERREZ

  • G.R. No. 163735 - GREEN ASIA CONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, ET AL. vs COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 163712 - METROPOLITAN BANK AND TRUST COMPANY, ET AL. vs JOSE B. TAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 163763 - MALAYAN REALTY, INC. vs UY HAN YONG

  • G.R. No. 164300 - SPOUSES BENJAMIN AND AGRIFINA SIM vs M.B. FINANCE CORPORATION

  • G.R. No. 164321 - SKECHERS, U.S.A., INC. vs INTER PACIFIC INDUSTRIAL TRADING CORP., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 164545 - LORBE REBUCAN y BALTAZAR vs PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 165038 - HEIRS OF EMILIO R. DOMINGO AND FELICIDAD CORNEJO, ET AL. vs THE HEIRS OF CLARITA D. MARTIN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 164858 - HENRY P. LANOT vs COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS

  • G.R. No. 165724 - ZAMORA REALTY and DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, ET AL. vs OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 165879 - MARIA B. CHING vs JOSEPH C. GOYANKO, JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 166403 - BENZON O. ALDEMITA vs HEIRS OF MELQUIADES SILVA

  • G.R. NOS. 166143-47 and G.R. NO. 166891 - ABDUSAKUR M. TAN, ET AL. vs COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 166496 - JOSEFA BAUTISTA FERRER vs SPS. MANUEL M. FERRER, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 166501 - ERNESTO B. FRANCISCO, JR. vs HON. BAYANI F. FERNANDO

  • G.R. No. 166649 - ROBERT B. CABUYOC vs INTER-ORIENT NAVIGATION SHIPMANAGEMENT, INC., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 166833 - FELIXBERTO CUBERO, ET AL. vs LAGUNA WEST MULTI-PURPOSE COOPERATIVE, INC., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 166837 - LIGAYA S. ORBETA vs RUBEN P. ORBETA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 167680 - SAMUEL PARILLA, ET AL. vs DR. PROSPERO PILAR

  • G.R. No. 167723 - CLUB FILIPINO, INC. vs ROMEO ARAULLO

  • G.R. No. 167743 - HILARIO P. SORIANO vs OMBUDSMAN SIMEON V. MARCELO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 167844 - OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN vs COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 168035 - MELANIE M. MESINA, ET AL. vs GLORIA C. GARCIA

  • G.R. No. 168718 - OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN vs FARIDA T. LUCERO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 168694 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs SAIDAMIN MACABALANG y MALAMAMA

  • G.R. No. 169193 - SPOUSES ILUMINADA CAPITLE and CIRILO CAPITLE vs FORTUNATA ELBAMBUENA, ET AL.

  • G.R. NOS. 169295-96 - REMINGTON INDUSTRIAL SALES CORPORATION vs ERLINDA CASTANEDA

  • G.R. No. 169341 - City of Cebu v. Vicente B. Del Rosario

  • G.R. No. 169578 - TERESITA DIO vs ST. FERDINAND MEMORIAL PARK, INC., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 169698 - LUPO ATIENZA vs YOLANDA DE CASTRO

  • G.R. No. 169891 - PHILIPPINE NATIONAL RAILWAYS vs ETHEL BRUNTY, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 170220 - JOSEFINA S. LUBRICA, ET AL. vs LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 170522 - CELSO LOPEZ OCATE vs COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 170829 - Perla G. Patricio v. Marcelino G. Dario III, et al.

  • G.R. No. 171102 - ATP TECHNOLOGIES INTERNATIONAL, INC. vs MICRON PRECISION PHILS., INC.

  • G.R. No. 170840 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs GREGORIO CARPIO @ "GORIO"

  • G.R. No. 171144 - SANTOS L. NACAYTUNA vs PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. NOS. 171322-24 - MARIANITO S. VICTORIANO vs PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 172274 - ROMEO D. CABARLO vs PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G. R. No. 171447 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs FEDERICO ARNAIZ y ARMONIO

  • G.R. No. 173290 - ZENAIDA M. LIMBONA vs JUDGE RALPH S. LEE, ET AL.

  •  





     
     

    A.M. No. RTJ-05-1901 - FORTUNE LIFE INSURANCE, COMPANY, INC.  vs  JUDGE JIMMY H. F. LUCZON, JR.

      A.M. No. RTJ-05-1901 - FORTUNE LIFE INSURANCE, COMPANY, INC. vs JUDGE JIMMY H. F. LUCZON, JR.

    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    EN BANC

    [A.M. NO. RTJ-05-1901 : November 30, 2006]

    FORTUNE LIFE INSURANCE, COMPANY, INC., represented by AMBROCIA G. CANCIO, Complainant, v. JUDGE JIMMY H. F. LUCZON, JR., Presiding Judge, Regional Trial Court, Tuguegarao, Branch 1, Respondent.

    R E S O L U T I O N

    CARPIO, J.:

    For resolution is the administrative complaint filed by Fortune Life Insurance Company, Inc. ("complainant"), through its Senior Vice-President Ambrocia G. Cancio, against Jimmy H. F. Luczon, Jr. ("respondent Judge"), Presiding Judge of the Regional Trial Court of Tuguegarao ("RTC-Tuguegarao"), Branch 1. The charges are grave abuse of authority, gross ignorance of the law, knowingly rendering an unjust order, and bias and partiality under Section 3, Rule 140 of the Revised Rules of Court.

    Complainant had sought the foreclosure of a real estate mortgage executed in its favor by Maria Victoria Realty and Development Corporation ("MVRDC"). On 8 October 2003, however, MVRDC filed a petition for annulment of real estate mortgage and accounting with prayer for the issuance of a preliminary injunction and temporary restraining order ("petition") against complainant. The case was filed before the RTC-Tuguegarao and docketed as Civil Case No. 6246. On the same day, RTC-Tuguegarao Executive Judge Vilma T. Pauig ("Judge Pauig") issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) enjoining complainant and the deputy sheriff from holding a foreclosure sale of MVRDC's real properties on 10 October 2003. The TRO was to be effective for 72 hours. The clerk of court sent a notice for the special raffle of the case on 13 October 2003.

    On 13 October 2003, MVRDC filed a motion for the extension of the TRO ("motion for extension"), with notice of hearing for 16 October 2003. On the latter date, after the raffle of the case to his sala, respondent Judge issued an Order1 extending the TRO for another 17 days.

    On 28 October 2003, respondent Judge issued the writ of preliminary injunction prayed for by MVRDC. Respondent Judge had not yet conducted any hearing on the case. The injunction order reads:

    Considering the fact that the temporary restraining order will expire on October 30, 2003 a date appearing from the allegations of the motion[,] that irreparable injuries may result should the sheriff pursue the foreclosure of the mortgage[,] the Court hereby grants the injunction subject however to a bond which will answer for the damages which the defendants may suffer as a result of the injunction and the bond is fixed at P300,000.00

    This injunction will take effect upon filing of the bond and shall continue until further orders from this Court.

    The Sheriff and any of his deputies are hereby enjoined from enforcing the foreclosure of the mortgage during the pendency of this injunction.

    x x x x2

    Complainant assailed the extension of the TRO and the issuance of the writ of preliminary injunction "based purely on the unilateral allegations of MVRDC." Complainant argued that respondent Judge should not have issued the TRO or writ without a summary hearing, especially considering that MVRDC's petition lacked an affidavit of merit. Complainant asserted that it clearly had the right to foreclose the mortgage. MVRDC defaulted in the payment of its loan, as shown by copies of dishonored MVRDC checks totaling P3,165,810.3 Complainant pointed out that under the law, MVRDC would have the right to redeem any of its foreclosed properties. Thus, according to complainant, there was no extreme urgency, grave injustice or irreparable injury which would justify the injunction in MVRDC's favor.

    In its 1st Indorsement dated 2 March 2004, the Office of the Court Administrator (OCA) required respondent Judge to file his comment and to show cause why he should not be sanctioned.

    In his defense, respondent Judge claimed that he did not know personally the counsels of either party to the case or any of their incorporators. Respondent Judge maintained that he dealt with the parties on a professional level and he always acted fairly.

    Respondent Judge claimed that complainant received a copy of the motion for extension, as shown by a registry receipt posted on 13 October 2003. He granted the motion for extension in view of the urgency of the case and to avoid irreparable injuries to MVRDC. Respondent Judge further claimed that complainant received a copy of the Motion to Set Hearing for the Issuance of Preliminary Injunction, as shown by a registry receipt posted on 17 October 2003. At any rate, respondent Judge stressed, he already issued an order dissolving the writ of preliminary injunction on 18 March 2004 after complainant filed a motion to dissolve the writ and MVRDC had filed its comment to the motion.

    In its evaluation of the allegations of both complainant and respondent Judge, the OCA stated:

    The instant complaint is partly meritorious. Complainant stresses pertinent points to account for respondent's alleged culpability. A probe into each reveals that many of the issues raised are judicial in nature. Save for one, the enumerated points warrant no culpability on the part of respondent Judge.

    Complainant assails the supposed lack of an Affidavit of Merit. Viewed in the context of the actual petition for preliminary injunction, this contention cannot be countenanced. The absence of an Affidavit of Merit is not final where the petition itself, which is under oath, recites the circumstances or facts which constitute the grounds of the petition.

    Complainant also takes issue with the fact that it was not furnished a copy of the bond. Apparently, this contention is premised on Section 7 of Rule 58, 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure, which in effect allows the adverse party to "except to the sufficiency of the bond, or of the surety or sureties thereon." Again, said contention cannot be sustained in light of the circumstances of the case at hand. A check with the records of the instant case discloses that the summons, a copy of the petition, and raffle notification were actually received by the complainant on 10 October 2003. In Caluya v. Ramos, the failure of the defendants to furnish the adverse parties with copies of the bonds prior to their approval is not sufficient to invalidate the orders dissolving the preliminary injunction where the attorneys for the latter were notified of the filing of the first bond; where they ultimately received copies of the bonds; and where they do not contend that said bonds are insufficient or that the sureties are not solvent.

    Except for the allegation of lack of summary hearing, complainant's charges against respondent Judge should be dismissed for being judicial in nature. Essentially the same allegations were raised in the Motion to Dissolve Writ of Preliminary Injunction. The complainant assails the wisdom of the assailed Orders of respondent. However, it must be noted that the complainant has adequate remedy under the Rules of Court to challenge said Orders. In fact, it filed a [m]otion to [d]issolve the [w]rit of [p]reliminary [i]njunction which was eventually granted on 18 March 2004.

    We submit, however, that the absence of summary hearing cannot be excused. The conduct of a summary hearing is mandated under Section 5, Rule 58, 1997 Rules of Procedure x x x x.

    The requirement of hearing is so basic and fundamental that an omission of [such] amounts to gross ignorance of rules and procedure and invites due sanction. In this case, respondent [Judge] twice ignored this elementary requisite. First, he extended the TRO. Then, after its expiration, he converted the same into a preliminary injunction. Both Orders were issued without conducting a summary hearing. The rules on preliminary injunction plainly provide that it cannot be granted without notice to the defendant.

    When the law or the rule is so elementary, not to be aware of it or to act as if one does not know it constitutes gross ignorance of the law. Judges are duty-bound to be faithful to the law and the rules and to maintain professional competence at all times. Their role in the administration of justice requires a continuous study of the law, rules and jurisprudence, lest public confidence in the judiciary be eroded by incompetence and irresponsible conduct.

    x x x [I]t bears stressing that a writ of injunction is an extraordinary, peremptory remedy that should be dispensed with circumspection, and both sides should first be heard whenever possible. In fact, judges are enjoined to observe utmost caution, prudence and judiciousness in the issuance of [a] TRO and in the grant of preliminary injunction. In Villanueva v. Court of Appeals, it was found that the issuance of the assailed TRO was tainted with grave abuse of discretion for having been issued without prior notice and hearing.

    Under A.M. No. 01-8-10-SC, "Gross Ignorance of the Law or Procedure" is classified as [a] serious offense for which the imposable sanction ranges from a fine to dismissal. However, we find [respondent Judge's] acts not ingrained with malice or bad faith. x x x x

    Recommendation: Respectfully submitted for the consideration of the Honorable Court are the recommendations that:

    1. The instant complaint be re-docketed as a regular administrative case;

    2. Respondent [Judge] be meted a fine in the amount of five thousand pesos for gross ignorance of the law; andcralawlibrary

    3. The rest of the charges against respondent [Judge] be DISMISSED for being judicial in nature.4

    The evaluation and recommendation of the OCA are well-taken, except for the penalty.

    The Rules of Court and Administrative Circular No. 20-955 require the holding of a hearing where both parties can introduce evidence and present their side before the court may issue a TRO or an injunctive writ. Section 5 of Rule 58 provides:

    SEC. 5. Preliminary injunction not granted without notice; exception. - No preliminary injunction shall be granted without hearing and prior notice to the party or person sought to be enjoined. If it shall appear from facts shown by affidavits or by the verified application that great or irreparable injury would result to the applicant before the matter can be heard on notice, the court to which the application for preliminary injunction was made, may issue ex parte a temporary restraining order to be effective only for a period of twenty (20) days from service on the party or person sought to be enjoined, except as herein provided. Within the said twenty-day period, the court must order said party or person to show cause, at a specified time and place, why the injunction should not be granted, determine within the same period whether or not the preliminary injunction shall be granted, and accordingly issue the corresponding order.

    However, and subject to the provisions of the preceding sections, if the matter is of extreme urgency and the applicant will suffer grave injustice and irreparable injury, the executive judge of a multiple-sala court or the presiding judge of a single-sala court may issue ex parte a temporary restraining order effective for only seventy-two (72) hours from issuance but he shall immediately comply with the provisions of the next preceding section as to service of summons and the documents to be served therewith. Thereafter, within the aforesaid seventy-two (72) hours, the judge before whom the case is pending shall conduct a summary hearing to determine whether the temporary restraining order shall be extended until the application for preliminary injunction can be heard. In no case shall the total period of effectivity of the temporary restraining order exceed twenty (20) days, including the original seventy-two hours provided herein. (Emphasis supplied)cralawlibrary

    Upon the application for a writ of preliminary injunction, where the matter is of extreme urgency and grave injustice and irreparable injury will arise, the Executive Judge may issue ex parte a TRO effective for 72 hours from issuance. Before the expiry of the 72 hours, the presiding judge to whom the case is raffled shall conduct a summary hearing to determine whether the TRO can be extended until the pending application for injunction can be heard.ςηαñrοblεš νιr υαl lαω lιbrαrÿ

    Evidently, the hearing of the motion for extension set on 16 October 2003 did not take place. All the same, respondent Judge granted the motion on that date, without mentioning the reason for the lack of hearing, or whether he intended to conduct one in the future on the prayer for the issuance of an injunction. Further compounding his error, respondent Judge failed to conduct a hearing on the injunction within the 20-day life of the TRO, as prescribed by the Rules of Court. Yet he issued the assailed injunction order against complainant. The injunction order did not even explain why no hearings had taken place prior to its issuance.

    Injunction is an extraordinary remedy to be resorted to when there is a pressing necessity to avoid injurious consequences that cannot be remedied under any standard compensation.6 A court may issue an injunction only if it is fully convinced of its extreme necessity and after it has complied with the procedural requirements set by law.

    In the absence of fraud, dishonesty or corruption, the acts of a judge in his judicial capacity are not subject to disciplinary action.7 However, the assailed judicial acts must not be in gross violation of clearly established law or procedure, with which every judge must be familiar. Every judge, while presiding over a court of law, must have the basic rules at the palm of his hands and maintain professional competence at all times.8

    Respondent Judge's failure to abide by Section 5, Rule 58 and Administrative Circular No. 20-95 constitutes gross ignorance of the law for which he must be disciplined accordingly.9 Under Rule 140 of the Rules of Court, as amended by A.M. No. 01-8-10-SC, gross ignorance of the law is classified as a serious charge and penalized with dismissal, suspension, or a fine ranging from above P20,000 to P40,000.

    WHEREFORE, we find respondent Judge Jimmy H. F. Luczon, Jr. of the Regional Trial Court of Tuguegarao, Branch 1, liable for GROSS IGNORANCE OF THE LAW and FINE him P21,000.We STERNLY WARN him that a repetition of the same or similar act in the future shall merit a more severe sanction.

    SO ORDERED.


    Endnotes:


    1 Rollo, p. 63.

    2 Id. at 64.

    3 Id. at 14-23.

    4 Id. at 104-107.

    5 Administrative Circular No. 20-95, Re: Special Rules for Temporary Restraining Orders and Preliminary Injunctions, provides:

    1. Where an application for temporary restraining order (TRO) or writ of preliminary injunction is included in a complaint or any initiatory pleading filed with the trial court, such complaint or initiatory pleading shall be raffled only after notice to the adverse party and in the presence of such party or counsel.

    2. The application for a TRO shall be acted upon only after all parties are heard in a summary hearing conducted within twenty-four (24) hours after the records are transmitted to the branch selected by raffle. The records shall be transmitted immediately after raffle.

    3. If the matter is of extreme urgency, such that unless a TRO is issued, grave injustice and irreparable injury will arise, the Executive Judge shall issue the TRO effective only for seventy-two (72) hours from issuance but shall immediately summon the parties for conference and immediately raffle the case in their presence. Thereafter, before the expiry of the seventy-two (72) hours, the Presiding Judge to whom the case is assigned shall conduct a summary hearing to determine whether the TRO can be extended for another period until a hearing in the pending application for preliminary injunction can be conducted. In no case shall the total period of the TRO exceed twenty (20) days, including the original seventy-two (72) hours, for the TRO issued by the Executive Judge.

    4. With the exception of the provisions which necessarily involve multiple-sala stations, these rules shall apply to single-sala stations especially with regard to immediate notice to all parties of all applications for TRO.

    x x x x (Emphasis supplied).

    6 Levi Strauss & Co. v. Clinton Apparelle, Inc., G.R. No. 138900, 20 September 2005, 470 SCRA 236.

    7 Estrada, Jr. v. Himalaloan, A.M. No. MTJ-05-1617, 18 November 2005, 475 SCRA 353.

    8 Mactan Cebu International Airport Authority v. Hontanosas, Jr., A.M. No. RTJ-03-1815, 25 October 2004, 441 SCRA 229.

    9 Marcos-Manotoc v. Agcaoili, 386 Phil. 471 (2000).

    A.M. No. RTJ-05-1901 - FORTUNE LIFE INSURANCE, COMPANY, INC.  vs  JUDGE JIMMY H. F. LUCZON, JR.


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