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

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

    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    SECOND DIVISION

    G.R. No. 199781 : February 18, 2013

    LICOMCEN, INC., Petitioner, v. ENGR. SALVADOR ABAINZA, doing business under the name and style "ADS INDUSTRIAL EQUIPMENT", Respondent.

    D E C I S I O N

    CARPIO, J.:

    The Case

    This petition for review1 assails the 21 September 2011 Decision2 and the 6 December 2011 Resolution3 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CV No. 86296. The Court of Appeal affirmed the 7 November 2005 Decision4 of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 8, Legazpi City, in Civil Case No. 9919, which ordered petitioner LICOMCEN, Inc. (petitioner) to pay respondent Engr. Salvador Abainza (respondent) the sum of P1,777,202.80 plus 12% interest per annum, P50,000 attorneys fees, and P20,000 litigation and incidental expenses.

    The Facts

    Respondent filed an action for sum of money and damages against Liberty Commercial Center, Inc. (Liberty). Respondent alleged that in 1997 and 1998, he was hired by Liberty to do various projects in their commercial centers, mainly at the LCC Central Mall, Naga City, for the supply, fabrication, and installation of air-conditioning ductworks. Respondent completed the project, which included some changes and revisions of the original plan at the behest of Liberty. However, despite several demands by respondent, Liberty failed to pay the remaining balance due on the project in the sum of P1,777,202.80.

    Liberty denied the material allegations of the complaint and countered that the collection suit was not filed against the real party-in-interest. Thus, respondent amended his complaint to include petitioner as defendant.5 The HRD Administrative Manager of Liberty testified that petitioner LICOMCEN, Inc. is a sister company of Liberty and that the incorporators and directors of both companies are the same.

    The Ruling of the Trial Court

    The trial court found that petitioners claim that it has fully paid respondent the total cost of the project in the sum of P6,700,000 pertains only to the cost of the original plan of the project. However, the additional costs of P1,777,202.80 incurred for labor, materials, and equipment on the revised plan were not paid by petitioner.

    As found by the trial court, petitioner (then defendant) ordered and approved the revisions in the original plan, thus:cralawlibrary

    During the awarding of the work, defendants wanted the aircon duct[s] changed from rectangular to round ducts because Ronald Tan, one of the LCC owners who came from abroad, suggested round aircon ducts he saw abroad were preferable. Plaintiff prepared a plan corresponding to the changes desired by the defendants (Exhibits "D", "D-1", "D-2").

    The changing of the rectangular ducts to round ducts entailed additional cost in labor and materials. Plaintiff had to remove the rectangular ducts installed, resize it to round ducts and re-install again. More G.I. Sheets were needed and new fittings as well, because the fittings for the rectangular ducts cannot be used in the round duct. There were movements of the equipment. In the original plan, the air handling unit (AHU) was [o]n the ground floor. It was relocated to the second floor. There were additional air ducting in the two big comfort rooms for customers, an exhaust blower to the dondon and discaminos, fresh air blower and lock machine at the food court were installed.

    Because of the changes, defendants wanted the tonnage of the refrigeration (TR) to be increased to cool up the space. The 855 tons capacity was increased to 900 [sic] tons. These changes entailed additional expense for labor and materials in the sum of Php1,805,355.62 (Exhibits "F" to "F-26").

    Plaintiffs work was being monitored by Es De Castro and Associates (ESCA), defendants engineering consultant. Paper works for the approval of ESCA are signed by Michal Cruz, an electrical engineer, and Jake Ozaeta, mechanical engineer, both employees of the defendants and a certain Mr. Tan, a representative of defendants who actually supervises the construction. Plaintiff presented the cost changes on the rework and change to 960 ton capacity. The total balance payable to plaintiff by defendant is Php 1,777.202.80 (Exhibit "G-42"). Accomplishment report had been submitted by plaintiff and approved by ESCA, project was turned over in 1988 but plaintiff was not paid the balance corresponding to the changed plan of work and additional work performed by plaintiff. Series of communications demanding payment (Exhibits "G-3" to "G-11", "G-13", "G-17" to "G-18", "G-23", "G- 24", "G-25", "G-26", "G-35 to 42") were made but plaintiff [sic] refused to pay.6?r?l1

    On 7 November 2005, the trial court rendered its Decision, the dispositive portion of which reads:cralawlibrary

    WHEREFORE, PREMISES CONSIDERED, decision is hereby rendered in favor of the plaintiff and against defendant LICOMCEN, Inc. ordering the latter to pay the plaintiff the sum of Php1,777,202.80 as its principal obligation with interest at 12% per annum until the amount is fully paid, the sum of Php50,000.00 as attorneys fess [sic] and Php20,000.00 as litigation and incidental expenses. Costs against defendant LICOMCEN, Inc.

    The case against Liberty Commercial Center, Inc. is hereby ordered DISMISSED.

    SO ORDERED.7?r?l1

    The Ruling of the Court of Appeals

    Petitioner appealed the trial courts Decision to the Court of Appeals, invoking Article 1724 of the Civil Code which provides:cralawlibrary

    Art. 1724. The contractor who undertakes to build a structure or any other work for a stipulated price, in conformity with plans and specifications agreed upon with the landowner, can neither withdraw from the contract nor demand an increase in the price on account of the higher cost of labor or materials, save when there has been a change in the plans and specifications, provided:cralawlibrary

    (1) Such change has been authorized by the proprietor in writing; and

    (2) The additional price to be paid to the contractor has been determined in writing by both parties.

    The Court of Appeals stated that petitioner never raised Article 1724 of the Civil Code as a defense in the trial court. Citing Section 1, Rule 9 of the Rules of Court8 and the case of Bank of the Philippine Islands v. Leobrera,9 the Court of Appeals ruled that petitioner cannot be allowed to change its theory on appeal since the adverse party would then be deprived of the opportunity to present further evidence on the new theory. Besides, the Court of Appeals held that Article 1724 of the Civil Code is not even applicable to the case because the Contract of Agreement was never signed by the parties considering that there were substantial changes to the original plan as the work progressed. Thus, the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial courts Decision, finding petitioner liable to respondent for the additional costs in labor and materials due to the revisions in the original project.

    Petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration, which the Court of Appeals denied in its Resolution dated 6 December 2011. Hence, this petition.

    The Issue

    The issue in this case is whether petitioner is liable for the additional costs incurred for labor, materials, and equipment on the revised project.

    The Ruling of the Court

    We find the petition without merit.

    In this case, petitioner invoked Article 1724 of the Civil Code as a defense against respondents claim. Petitioner alleged that respondent cannot recover additional costs since the agreement in the change of plans and specifications of the project, the pricing and cost of materials and labor was not in writing.

    The Court of Appeals mistakenly stated that petitioner only raised Article 1724 of the Civil Code as a defense on appeal. A perusal of the records reveals that, although petitioner did not invoke Article 1724 of the Civil Code as a defense in its answer10 or in its pre-trial brief,11 petitioner belatedly asserted such defense in its Memorandum12 filed before the trial court. Thus, from its previous defense that it has fully paid its obligations to respondent, petitioner changed its theory by adding that since the additional work done by respondent was not authorized in writing, then respondent cannot recover additional costs. In effect, petitioner does not deny that additional costs were incurred due to the change of plans in the original project, but justifies not paying for such expense by invoking Article 1724 of the Civil Code.

    Under Section 1, Rule 9 of the Rules of Court, defenses and objections not pleaded either in a motion to dismiss or in the answer are deemed waived, with the following exceptions: (1) lack of jurisdiction over the subject matter; (2) litis pendentia; (3) res judicata; and (4) prescription of the action. Clearly, petitioner cannot change its defense after the termination of the period of testimony and after the exhibits of both parties have already been admitted by the court. The non-inclusion of this belated defense in the pre-trial order barred its consideration during the trial. To rule otherwise would put the adverse party at a disadvantage since he could no longer offer evidence to rebut the new theory. Indeed, parties are bound by the delimitation of issues during the pre-trial.13 As held in Villanueva v. Court of Appeals:14?r?l1

    Pre-trial is primarily intended to insure that the parties properly raise all issues necessary to dispose of a case. The parties must disclose during pre-trial all issues they intend to raise during the trial, except those involving privileged or impeaching matters. Although a pre-trial order is not meant to catalogue each issue that the parties may take up during the trial, issues not included in the pre-trial order may be considered only if they are impliedly included in the issues raised or inferable from the issues raised by necessary implication. The basis of the rule is simple. Petitioners are bound by the delimitation of the issues during the pre-trial because they themselves agreed to the same.15?r?l1 ???r?bl???r??ll??l?br?r

    Besides, Article 1724 of the Civil Code is not even applicable to this case. It is evident from the records that the original contract agreement,16 submitted by respondent as evidence, which stated a total contract price of P5,300,000, was never signed by the parties considering that there were substantial changes in the plan imposed by petitioner in the course of the work on the project.17 Petitioner admitted paying P6,700,000 to respondent which was allegedly the agreed cost of the project. However, petitioner did not submit any written contract signed by both parties which would substantiate its claim that the agreed cost of the project was only P6,700,000. Clearly, petitioner cannot invoke Article 1724 of the Civil Code to avoid paying its obligation considering that the alleged original contract was never even signed by both parties because of the various changes imposed by petitioner on the original plan. The fact that petitioner paid P1,400,00018 more than the amount stated in the unsigned contract agreement clearly indicates that there were indeed additional costs during the course of the work on the project. It is just unfortunate that petitioner is now invoking Article 1724 of the Civil Cide to avoid further payment of the additional costs incurred on the project.

    What was established in the trial court was that petitioner ordered the changes in the original plan which entailed additional costs in labor and materials. The work done by respondent was closely monitored and supervised by petitioners engineering consultant and all the paperworks relating to the project were approved by petitioner through its representatives. We find no justifiable reason to deviate from the findings and ruling of the trial court, which were also upheld by the Court of Appeals. Thus, petitioner should be held liable for the additional costs incurred for labor, materials, and equipment on the revised project.

    WHEREFORE, we DENY the petition. We AFFIRM the 21 September 2011 Decision and the 6 December 2011 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CV No. 86296.

    SO ORDERED.


    Endnotes:


    1 Under Rule 48 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure.

    2 Rollo. pp. 27-36. Penned by Associate Justice Agnes Reyes-Carpio with Associate Justices Fernanda Lampas Peralta and Priscila J. Baltazar-Padilla, concurring.

    3 Id. at 38-39.

    4 CA rollo, pp. 41-59.

    5 It appears that the confusion in identifying the real defendants in the collection case arose because the previous payments to respondent totaling P6,700,000, although billed to petitioner LICOMCEN, Inc., were all paid by the accounting department of Liberty Commercial Center, Inc. Thus, the inclusion of Liberty as the defendant in the original complaint. CA rollo, p. 58.

    6 Id. at 54-55.

    7 Id. at 58-59.

    8 Section 1. Defenses and objections not pleaded. Defenses and objections not pleaded either in a motion to dismiss or in the answer are deemed waived. However, when it appears from the pleadings of the evidence on record that the court has no jurisdiction over the subject matter, that there is another action pending between the same parties for the same cause, or that the action is barred by a prior judgment or by statute of limitations, the court shall dismiss the claim.

    9 461 Phil. 461 (2003).

    10 Records, pp. 82-83.

    11 Id. at 87-89.

    12 Id. at 225-232.

    13 Sections 6 and 7, Rule 18 of the Rules of Court provide:cralawlibrary

    Sec. 6. Pre-trial brief. The parties shall file with the court and serve on the adverse party, in such manner as shall insure their receipt thereof at least three (3) days before the date of the pre-trial, their respective pre-trial briefs which shall contain, among others:cralawlibrary

    (a) A statement of their willingness to enter into amicable settlement or alternative modes of dispute resolution, indicating the desired terms thereof;

    (b) A summary of admitted facts and proposed stipulation of facts;

    (c) The issues to be tried or resolved;

    (d) The documents or exhibits to be presented, stating the purpose thereof;

    (e) A manifestation of their having availed or their intention to avail themselves of discovery procedures or referral to commissioners; and

    (f) The number and names of the witnesses, and the substance of their respective testimonies. ???r?bl???r??ll??l?br?r

    Failure to file the pre-trial brief shall have the same effect as failure to appear at the pre-trial.

    Sec. 7. Record of pre-trial. The proceedings in the pre-trial shall be recorded. Upon the termination thereof, the court shall issue an order which shall recite in detail the matters taken up in the conference, the action taken thereon, the amendments allowed to the pleadings, and the agreements or admissions made by the parties as to any of the matters considered. Should the action proceed to trial, the order shall explicitly define and limit the issues to be tried. The contents of the order shall control the subsequent course of the action, unless modified before trial to prevent manifest injustice. (Emphasis supplied) ???r?bl???r??ll??l?br?r

    14 471 Phil. 394 (2004).

    15 Id. at 407.

    16 Exhibit "A."???r?bl???r??ll??l?br?r

    17 Rollo, p. 33.

    18 P6,700,000 P5,300,000 = P1,400,000.

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


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