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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
 

   
February-2013 Jurisprudence                 

  • A.M. OCA IPI No. 12-201-CA-J, February 19, 2013 - ETHELWOLDO E. FERNANDEZ, ANTONIO A. HENSON AND ANGEL S. ONG, Complainants, v. COURT OF APPEALS ASSOCIATE JUSTICES RAMON M. BATO, JR., ISAIAS P. DICDICAN AND EDUARDO B. PERALTA, JR., Respondents.

  • A.C. No. 9310, February 27, 2013 - VERLEEN TRINIDAD, FLORENTINA LANDER, WALLY CASUBUAN, MINERVA MENDOZA, CELEDONIO ALOJADO, ROSENDO VILLAMIN AND AUREA TOLENTINO, Complainants, v. ATTY. ANGELITO VILLARIN, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 151334, February 13, 2013 - CAROLINA (CARLINA) VDA. DE FIGURACION, HEIRS OF ELENA FIGURACION-ANCHETA, NAMELY: LEONCIO ANCHETA, JR., AND ROMULO ANCHETA, HEIRS OF HILARIA A. FIGURACION, NAMELY: FELIPA FIGURACION-MANUEL, MARY FIGURACION-GINEZ, AND EMILIA FIGURACION-GERILLA, AND HEIRS OF QUINTIN FIGURACION, NAMELY: LINDA M. FIGURACION, LEANDRO M. FIGURACION, II, AND ALLAN M. FIGURACION, Petitioners, v. EMILIA FIGURACION-GERILLA, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 154083, February 27, 2013 - OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN, Petitioner, v. SAMSON DE LEON, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 157086, February 18, 2013 - LEPANTO CONSOLIDATED MINING COMPANY, Petitioner, v. THE LEPANTO CAPATAZ UNION, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 158649, February 18, 2013 - SPOUSES QUIRINO V. DELA CRUZ AND GLORIA DELA CRUZ, Petitioners, v. PLANTERS PRODUCTS, INC., Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 159823, February 18, 2013 - TEODORO A. REYES, Petitioner, v. ETTORE ROSSI, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 161596, February 20, 2013 - ROBERTO BORDOMEO, JAYME SARMIENTO AND GREGORIO BARREDO, Petitioners, v. COURT OF APPEALS, HON. SECRETARY OF LABOR, AND INTERNATIONAL PHARMACEUTICALS, INC., Respondents.

  • G.R. Nos. 164155 and 175543, February 25, 2013 - FORT BONIFACIO DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 164662, February 18, 2013 - MARIA LOURDES C. DE JESUS, Petitioner, v. HON. RAUL T. AQUINO,PRESIDING COMMISSIONER, NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, SECOND DIVISION, QUEZON CITY,AND SUPERSONIC SERVICES, INC., Respondents.; G.R. NO. 165787 - SUPERSONIC SERVICES, INC., Petitioner, v. MARIA LOURDES C. DE JESUS, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 168703, February 26, 2013 - RAMON G. NAZARENO, Petitioner, v. MAERSK FILIPINAS CREWING INC., AND ELITE SHIPPING A/S, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 166282, February 13, 2013 - HEIRS OF FE TAN UY (REPRESENTED BY HER HEIR, MANLING UY LIM), Petitioners, v. INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE BANK, RESPONDENT. - G.R. NO. 166283 - GOLDKEY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, PETITIONER. VS. INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE BANK, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 169677, February 18, 2013 - METROPOLITAN BANK AND TRUST COMPANY, AS SUCCESSOR-IN-INTEREST OF ASIAN BANK CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. HON. EDILBERTO G. SANDOVAL, HON. FRANCISCO H. VILLARUZ, JR. AND HON. RODOLFO A. PONFERRADA (IN THEIR CAPACITIES AS CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS, RESPECTIVELY, OF THE SECOND DIVISION OF SANDIGANBAYAN) AND THE REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 173357, February 13, 2013 - ROWENA DE LEON CRUZ, Petitioner, v. BANK OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 173489, February 25, 2013 - ALILEM CREDIT COOPERATIVE, INC., NOW KNOWN AS ALILEM MULTIPURPOSE COOPERATIVE, INC., Petitioner, v. SALVADOR M. BANDIOLA, JR., Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 173987, February 25, 2013 - PADILLA MERCADO, ZULUETA MERCADO, BONIFACIA MERCADO, DAMIAN MERCADO AND EMMANUEL MERCADO BASCUG, Petitioners, v. SPOUSES AGUEDO ESPINA AND LOURDES ESPINA, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 175369, February 27, 2013 - TEGIMENTA CHEMICAL PHILS. AND VIVIAN ROSE D. GARCIA, Petitioners, v. MARY ANNE OCO, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 175108, February 27, 2013 - CHINA BANKING CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 175602, February 13, 2013 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. P02 EDUARDO VALDEZ AND EDWIN VALDEZ, Accused-Appellants.

  • G.R. No. 175876, February 20, 2013 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. TOMAS TEODORO Y ANGELES, Accused-Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 177116, February 27, 2013 - ASIAN TERMINALS, INC., Petitioner, v. SIMON ENTERPRISES, INC., Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 178065, February 20, 2013 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. ARNOLD TAPERE Y POLPOL, Accused-Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 179965, February 20, 2013 - NICOLAS P. DIEGO, Petitioner, v. RODOLFO P. DIEGO AND EDUARDO P. DIEGO, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 180269, February 20, 2013 - JOSE Z. CASILANG, SR., SUBSTITUTED BY HIS HEIRS, NAMELY: FELICIDAD CUDIAMAT VDA. DE CASILANG, JOSE C. CASILANG, JR., RICARDO C. CASILANG, MARIA LOURDES C. CASILANG, CHRISTOPHER C. CASILANG, BEN C. CASILANG, DANTE C. CASILANG, GREGORIO C. CASILANG, HERALD C. CASILANG; AND FELICIDAD Z. CASILANG, MARCELINA Z. CASILANG, JACINTA Z. CASILANG, BONIFACIO Z. CASILANG, LEONORA Z. CASILANG, AND FLORA Z. CASILANG, Petitioners, v. ROSARIO Z. CASILANG-DIZON, MARIO A. CASILANG, ANGELO A. CASILANG, RODOLFO A. CASILANG, AND ATTY. ALICIA B. FABIA, IN HER CAPACITY AS CLERK OF COURT AND EX-OFFICIO SHERIFF OF PANGASINAN AND/OR HER DULY AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 180677, February 18, 2013 - VICTORIO P. DIAZ, Petitioner, v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES AND LEVI STRAUSS [PHILS.], INC., Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 180882, February 27, 2013 - THE BAGUIO REGREENING MOVEMENT, INC., REPRESENTED BY ATTY. ERDOLFO V. BALAJADIA; CITY ENVIRONMENT AND PARKS MANAGEMENT OFFICE, REPRESENTED BY ITS OFFICER-IN-CHARGE, CORDELIA C. LACSAMANA; AND THE BUSOL FOREST RESERVATION TASK FORCE, REPRESENTED BY ITS TEAM LEADER, VICTOR DICTAG, Petitioners, v. ATTY. BRAIN MASWENG, IN HIS CAPACITY AS REGIONAL HEARING OFFICER, NCIP-CAR; ELIZABETH MAT-AN, FOR HERSELF AND AS REPRESENTATIVE OF THE HEIRS OF RAFAEL; JUDITH MARANES, FOR HERSELF AND AS REPRESENTATIVE OF THE HEIRS OF MOLINTAS; HELEN LUBOS, FOR HERSELF AND AS REPRESENTATIVE OF THE HEIRS OF KALOMIS; MAGDALENA GUMANGAN QUE, FOR HERSELF AND AS REPRESENTATIVE OF THE HEIRS OF GUMANGAN; SPOUSES ALEXANDER AMPAGUEY AND LUCIA AMPAGUEY; AND SPOUSES CARMEN PANAYO AND MELANIO PANAYO, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 181354, February 27, 2013 - SIMON A. FLORES, Petitioner, v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 182152, February 25, 2013 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES AND MIRIAM RUTH T. MAGSINO, Petitioners, v. PO1 RICARDO P. EUSEBIO, SPO2 ROMEO ISIDRO, AND JOJIT GEORGE CONTRERAS, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 182431, February 27, 2013 - LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, Petitioner, v. ESTHER ANSON RIVERA, ANTONIO G. ANSON AND CESAR G. ANSON, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 183102, February 27, 2013 - MACARIO DIAZ CARPIO, Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS, SPOUSES GELACIO G. ORIA AND MARCELINA PRE ORIA, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 184487, February 27, 2013 - HON. MEDEL ARNALDO B. BELEN, IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS PRESIDING JUDGE OF THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 36, 4TH JUDICIAL REGION, CALAMBA CITY, Petitioner, v. JOSEF ALBERT S. COMILANG, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 184681, February 25, 2013 - GERRY A. SALAPUDDIN, Petitioner, v. THE COURT OF APPEALS, GOV. JUM AKBAR, AND NOR-RHAMA J. INDANAN, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 188363, February 27, 2013 - ALLIED BANKING CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. BANK OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 188849, February 13, 2013 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. JONATHAN "UTO" VELOSO Y RAMA, Accused-Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 188969, February 27, 2013 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. JOHN ALVIN PONDIVIDA, Accused-Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 193804, February 27, 2013 - SPOUSES NILO RAMOS AND ELIADORA RAMOS, Petitioners, v. RAUL OBISPO AND FAR EAST BANK AND TRUST COMPANY, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 194168, February 13, 2013 - LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, Petitioner, v. SPOUSES PLACIDO AND CLARA DY ORILLA, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 195825, February 27, 2013 - SPOUSES ALFONSO AND MARIA ANGELES CUSI, Petitioners, v. LILIA V. DOMINGO, Respondent. : G.R. NO. 195871 - RAMONA LIZA L. DE VERA, Petitioner, v. LILIA V. DOMINGO AND SPOUSES RADELIA AND ALFRED SY, Respondents.

  • A.C. No. 7350 - Patrocinio V. Agbulos v. Atty. Roseller A. Viray

  • A.M. No. 10-2-41-RTC - Missing Exhibits and Court Properties in Regional Trial Court, Br. 4, Panabo City, Davao del Norte

  • A.M. OCA-IPI No. 07-2618-RTJ - A.M. OCA-IPI No. 07-2619-RTJ - A.M. OCA-IPI No. 07-2652-RTJ - A.M. OCA-IPI No. 07-2720-RTJ - A.M. OCA-IPI No. 07-2721-RTJ - A.M. OCA-IPI No. 08-2808-RTJ - Eduardo Panes, Jr. et al. v. Judge Oscar E. Dinopol, RTC, Branch 24, Koronadal City; Joewe Palad v. Judge Oscar E. Dinopol, RTC, Branch 24, Koronadal City; Roque C. Facura, et al. v. Judge Oscar E. Dinopol, RTC, Branch 24, Koronadal City; Eden V. Castro v. Judge Oscar E. Dinopol, RTC, Branch 24, Koronadal City; Rosalinda G. Farofaldane v. Judge Oscar E. Dinopol, RTC, Branch 24, Koronadal City; Engr. Roque C. Facura, et al. v. Judge Oscar E. Dinopol, RTC, Branch 24, Koronadal City

  • A.M. No. MTJ-10-1771 - Victoriano G. Manlapaz v. Judge Manuel T. Sabillo, MCTC, Lamitan, Basilan

  • A.M. No. MTJ-12-1818 - Atty. Manuel J. Jimenez, Jr. v. Presiding Judge Michael M. Amdengan, Municipal Trail Court, Angono Rizal

  • A.M. No. 10-9-15-SC - Re: Request of (Ret.) Chief Justice Artemio V. Panganiban for Re-Computation of his Creditable Service for the Purpose of Re-Computing his Retirement Benefits.

  • A.M. No. P-11-2967 - Erlinda C. Mendoza v. Pedro S. Esguerra, Process Server, RTC, Br. 89, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija

  • G.R. No. 145336 - Reynante Tadeja, et al. v. People of the Philippines

  • A.M. No. P-12-3032 - Ray Antonio C. Sasing v. Celestial Venus G. Gelbolingo, Sheriff IV, RTC, Branch 20, Cagayan de Oro City

  • G.R. No. 169253 - Pacifico C. Velasco v. The Hon. Sandiganbayan (Fifth Division) and The People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 163037 - Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company, Inc. v. Eastern Telecom Philippines

  • G.R. No. 172044 - Cavite Apparel, Inc., et al. v. Michelle Marquez

  • G.R. No. 169899 - Philacor Credit Corporation v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue

  • G.R. No. 174385 - Republic of the Philippines v. Hon. Ramon S. Caguiao, etc., et al.

  • G.R. No. 177158 - People of the Philippines v. Linda Alviz y Yatco and Elizabeth Dela Vega y Bautista

  • G.R. No. 179096 - Joseph Goyanko, Jr., as administrator of the Estate of Joseph Goyanko, Sr. v. United Coconut Planters Bank, Mango Avenue Branch

  • G.R. No. 179965 - Nicolas P. Diego v. Rodolfo P. Diego and Eduardo P. Diego

  • G.R. No. 180325 - O. Ventanilla Enterprises Corporation v. Adelina S. Tan and Sheriff Reynante G. Velasquez, Presiding Judge

  • G.R. No. 182358 - Department of Health, et al. v. Phil Pharmawealth, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 183102 - Macario Diaz Carpio v. Court of Appeals, spouses Gelacio G. Gloria and Marcelina Pre Oria

  • G.R. No. 187474 - Government Service Insurance System v. Marilou Alcaraz

  • G.R. No. 187496 - People of the Philippines v. Malik Manalao y Alauya

  • G.R. No. 187919 - Rafael H. Galvez and Katherine L. Guy v. Asia United Bank; G.R. No. 187979 - Asia United Bank v. Gilbert, et al.; G.R. No. 188030 - Gilbert Guy, et al. v. Asia Untied Bank

  • G.R. No. 188551 - Edmundo Escamilla y Jugo v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 188659 - Heirs of Manuel H. Ridad, et al. v. Gregorio Araneta University Foundation

  • G.R. No. 187485 - Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. San Roque Power Corporation; G.R. No. 196113 - Taganito Mining Corporation v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue; G.R. No. 197156 - Philex Mining Corporation v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue

  • G.R. No. 190343 - People of the Philippines v. Saiben Langcua y Daimla

  • G.R. No. 191023 - Don Djowel Sales y Abalahin v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 191644 - Dennis A.B. Funa v. Acting Secretary of Justice Alberto C. Agra, etc., et al.

  • G.R. No 191726 - People of the Philippines v. Noel Bartolome y Bajo

  • G.R. No. 191740 - Susana R. Sy v. Philippine Transmarine Carriers, Inc., and/or SSC Ship Management Pte., Ltd

  • G.R. No. 193314 - Svetlana P. Jalosjos v. Commission on Elections, Edwin Elim Tupag

  • G.R. No. 194578 - Philip Sigrid A. Fortun v. Prima Jesusa B. Quinsayas, et al.

  • G.R. No. 195032 - Isabelo A. Braza v. The Honorable Sandiganbayan (1st Division)

  • G.R. No. 195198 - Loreli LIm Po v. Department of the Justice, et al.; G.R. No. 197098 - Antonio ng Chiu v. Court of Appeals, et al.

  • G.R. No. 197003 - Nerie C. Serrano v. Ambassador Hotel, Inc. and Yolanda Chan

  • G.R. No. 196577 - Land Bank of the Philippines v. Barbara Sampaga Poblete

  • G.R. No. 197299 - Office of the Ombudsman v. Rodrigo V. Mapoy and Don Emmanuel R. Regalario

  • G.R. No. 198115 - People of the Philippines v. Jose Alex Secreto y Villanueva

  • G.R. No. 198794 - People of the Philippines v. Victor De Jesus y Garcia

  • G.R. No. 199781 - Licomcen, Inc. v. Engr. Salvador Abainza, etc.

  • G.R. No. 204528 - Secretary Leila M. De Lima, Director Nonnatus R. Rojas and Deputy Director Reynaldo O. Esmeralda v. Magtanggol B. Gatdula

  • A.M. No. MTJ-11-1801 (Formerly OCA I.P.I. No. 11-2438 MTJ), February 27, 2013 - ANONYMOUS, Complainant, v. JUDGE RIO C. ACHAS, MUNICIPAL TRIAL COURT IN CITIES, BRANCH 2, OZAMIZ CITY, MISAMIS OCCIDENTAL, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 201167, February 27, 2013 - GOTESCO PROPERTIES, INC., JOSE C. GO, EVELYN GO, LOURDES G. ORTIGA, GEORGE GO, AND VICENTE GO, Petitioners, v. SPOUSES EUGENIO AND ANGELINA FAJARDO, Respondents.

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    A.M. No. P-11-2967 - Erlinda C. Mendoza v. Pedro S. Esguerra, Process Server, RTC, Br. 89, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija

      A.M. No. P-11-2967 - Erlinda C. Mendoza v. Pedro S. Esguerra, Process Server, RTC, Br. 89, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija

    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    SECOND DIVISION

    A.M. No. P-11-2967 : February 13, 2013
    (formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 08-2991-P)

    ERLINDA C. MENDOZA, Complainant, v. PEDRO S. ESGUERRA, Process Server, Regional Trial Court, Branch 89, Baloc, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija, Respondent.

    D E C I S I O N

    BRION, J.:

    In a sworn administrative comp1aint1 dated October 14, 2008, Erlinda C. Mendoza (complainant) charged Pedro-S. Esguerra (respondent), Process Server, Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 89, Baloc, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija, with Negligence and Dereliction of Duty.

    The complaint shows that the complainant was the plaintiff in Civil Case No. 53-SD-94, entitled "Erlinda C. Afendoza v. Renato A1endoza," filed with the RTC of Baloc, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija, Branch 89, presided by Judge Santiago M. Arenas. In an Order2 dated August 14, 2008, the RTC dismissed the complaint "[i]11 view of the repeated non-appearance of both parties.]"

    On September 26, 2008, the complainant wrote Judge Arenas asking for the reconsideration of the dismissal of her case.3 She explained that she failed to attend the hearing of her case because she received a copy of the Order (dated July 9, 2008) setting the case for hearing only on August 22, 2008; another copy was served on her on August 29, 2008.

    She further alleged that she inquired from the Office of the Clerk of Court why she was not promptly furnished a copy of the notice before the date set for hearing. She found out that the first notice was given to the respondent Process Server on July 9, 2008 but he mailed it only on August 11, 2008, while the second notice was endorsed to him on August 6, 2008 and was mailed only on August 22, 2008. The complainant pointed out that it took the respondent more than one (1) month to mail the first notice, while the second notice was mailed after the date set for the hearing of her case.

    In his answer4 dated December 6, 2008, the respondent claimed that as Process Server, he is in charge of mailing all the legal processes of the Court. He explained that the copy of the Order of July 7, 2008 setting the case for hearing on August 14, 2008 was mailed only on August 11, 2008 because it was handed to him by the Civil Docket Clerk only "sometime" in the afternoon of August 8, 2008, which was a Friday. He claimed that "the said omission is attributable only to the Clerk in charge (Civil Docket Clerk)."???r?bl???r??ll??l?br?r

    In an Evaluation Report5 dated February 3, 2010, the Office of the Court Administrator recommended that the complaint be referred to the Executive Judge of the RTC of Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija for investigation, report and recommendation, to give the parties the opportunity to substantiate their respective positions.

    At the RTC proceedings, the complainant submitted additional evidence to substantiate her complaint against the respondent. She submitted a copy of the Notice of Dismissal in support of her claim that the respondent had been remiss in the performance of his duties. In her letter6 dated September 27, 2010, addressed to Executive Judge Nelson A. Tribiana, she submitted a copy of the Notice of Dismissal dated August 21, 2008 showing that it was endorsed to the respondent sometime on August 22 or 25, 2008, but was mailed only on September 19, 2008.

    The respondent, when asked to explain the delay in the mailing of the July 7, 2008 Order, maintained the earlier allegation in his Answer submitted to the Court that the Order was given to him only on August 8, 2008. Since this date was a Friday, he mailed the Order only on the next working day, August 11, 2008. He explained further that the order he mailed on August 22, 2008 (and received by the complainant on August 29, 2008) was the same and similar order, intended merely as a follow-up of the first mailed order.

    In an Investigation Report and Recommendation7 dated November 12, 2010, Executive Judge Tribiana found the respondent liable for simple neglect of duty. His findings:cralawlibrary

    As to whose responsibility the delays in the mailing of the Orders could be attributed, the undersigned believes that it is that of respondent Pedro S. Esguerra, he, as Process Server, being the one responsible in the mailing of Orders issued by the Court. His allegation that the July 7, 2008 Order was endorsed to him by the Docket Clerk for mailing only on August 8, 2008 (Friday), is at all self-serving, as he failed to substantiate such claim. If it were true that said Order was given to him only on August 8, 2008, he should have called the attention of the Docket Clerk, that the mailing of the Order would be too late for the hearing scheduled on August 14, 2008. Thus, he should not have proceeded to mail the same; but instead, should have served the Order personally to the parties, particularly to the herein complainant. Respondent failed to live up to the standards called for of him as a Process Server, whose duty is to serve court processes with utmost care on his part by seeing to it that all notices assigned to him are duly served upon the parties.

    It is thus the finding of the undersigned that respondent Pedro S. Esguerra xxx is liable for simple neglect of duty, defined as the failure of an employee to give proper attention to a task expected of him, signifying "disregard of a duty resulting from carelessness or indifference".8?r?l1

    No less than the Constitution itself mandates that all public officers and employees should serve with responsibility, integrity and efficiency, for public office is a public trust.9 The Court has repeatedly reminded those who work in the Judiciary to be examples of responsibility, competence and efficiency; they must discharge their duties with due care and utmost diligence, since they are officers of the Court and agents of the law.10 "Indeed, any conduct, act or omission on the part of those who would violate the norm[s] of public accountability and diminish or even just tend to diminish the faith of the people in the judiciary shall not be countenanced."11?r?l1

    In the present case, the respondent cannot shift the blame to the Civil Docket Clerk for the delay in the service of the July 7, 2008 Order. The Court fully agrees with the findings of Executive Judge Tribiana that if indeed a copy of the July 7, 2008 Order had been handed to the respondent only on August 8, 2008, a Friday, "he should not have proceeded to mail the same; but instead, should have served the Order personally to the parties, particularly to the herein complainant."12 Even the Notice of Dismissal dated August 21, 2008 was mailed only on September 19, 2008, three (3) weeks after it was endorsed to him sometime on August 22 or 25, 2008. These acts clearly demonstrate lack of sufficient or reasonable diligence on the part of the respondent. Section 1, Canon IV of the Code of Conduct for Court Personnel mandates that "Court personnel shall at all times perform official duties properly and with diligence." Clearly, the respondent had been remiss in the performance of his duties and has shown lack of dedication to the functions of his office. The respondents actuations displayed a conduct falling short of the stringent standards required of court employees.13?r?l1

    In the absence of any further ulterior motivation shown on the records, the Court agrees with Executive Judge Tribiana that the respondent is guilty of simple neglect of duty. He reports:cralawlibrary

    There is no doubt that the mailing of the July 7, 2008 Order subject matter of this investigation was delayed for thirty three (33) days (from July 9, 2008 to August 11, 2008). And even the mailing on August 22, 2008 of the same Order, allegedly intended merely as a follow-up, was also delayed for sixteen (16) days counted from the time the OIC Clerk of Court initiated said Order. There is thus, a pattern of delays in the release and mailing of Orders. In fact, even the August 14, 2008 Order of Dismissal, which bears the initial of then OIC-Clerk of Court, Marietta Atayde, dated August 21, 2008, was mailed only on September 19, 2008, a delay of twenty five (25) days (from August 25, 2008, when said Order should have been mailed).14?r?l1

    Under Memorandum Circular No. 19, s. 1999 of the Civil Service Commission, simple neglect of duty is classified as a less grave offense punishable by suspension without pay for one (1) month and one (1) day to six (6) months for the first offense, and dismissal from the service for the second offense. However, to prevent any undue adverse effect on public service that would ensue if the respondent would be suspended, the Court deems it wise to impose the penalty of fine instead so that the respondent can continue to discharge his assigned tasks.15 We believe that a fine equivalent to three (3) months salary would best impress upon the respondent the character of the offense be committed, and send a signal to the whole Judiciary how this Court regards even a seemingly simple violation when that violation would adversely affect third parties and tarnish the image of the Judiciary.

    WHEREFORE, the Court finds respondent Pedro S. Esguerra, Process Server, Regional Trial Com1, Branch 89, Baloc, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija, guilty of Simple Neglect of Duty and he is hereby imposed a FINE equivalent to three (3) months salary, with a WARNING that a repetition of the same or similar act shall be dealt with more severely.

    SO ORDERED.


    Endnotes:


    * Designated as additional member in lieu of Associate Justice Jose P. Perez per Raffle dated February 6. 2013.

    1 Rollo, pp. l-3.

    2 Id. at 5.

    3 Id. at 8.

    4 Id. at 10-11.

    5 Id. at 18-19.

    6 Id. at 23-24

    7 Id. at 38-41.

    8 Id. at 40-41.

    9 Francisco v. Galvez, A.M. No. P-09-2636, December 4, 2009, 607 SCRA 21, 27.

    10 Baculi v. Ugale, A.M. No. P-08-2569, October 30, 2009, 604 SCRA 685, 687.

    11 Gutierrez v. Quitalig, 448 Phil. 469, 479 (2003).

    12 Supra note 7, at 40.

    13 Juario v. Labis, A.M. No. P-07-2388, June 30, 2008, 556 SCRA 540, 544.

    14 Supra note 7, at 40.

    15 Juario v. Labis, supra note 13, at 544-545: Zamudio v. Auro. A.M. No. P-04-1793, December 2008, 573 SCRA 178, 187.

    A.M. No. P-11-2967 - Erlinda C. Mendoza v. Pedro S. Esguerra, Process Server, RTC, Br. 89, Sto. Domingo, Nueva Ecija


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