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Perfecto Floresca vs Philex Mining Corporation FACTS: FACTS: Floresca et al are the heirs of the deceased employees of Philex

Mining Corporation (hereinafter referred to as Philex), who, while working at its copper mines underground operations at Tuba, Benguet on June 28, 1967, died as a result of the cave-in that buried them in the tunnels of the mine. Specifically, the complaint alleges that Philex, in violation of government rules and regulations, negligently and deliberately failed to take the required precautions for the protection of the lives of its men working underground. Floresca et al moved to claim their benefits pursuant to the Workmens Compensation Act before the Workmens Compensation Commission. They also petitioned before the regular courts and sue Philex for additional damages. Philex invoked that they can no longer be sued because the petitioners have already claimed benefits under the WCA. ISSUE: Whether or not Floresca et al can claim benefits and at the same time sue. HELD: Under the law, Floresca et al could only do either one. If they filed for benefits under the WCA then they will be estopped from proceeding with a civil case before the regular courts. Conversely, if they sued before the civil courts then they would also be estopped from claiming benefits under the WCA. The SC however ruled that Floresca et al are excused from this deficiency due to ignorance of the fact. Had they been aware of such then they may have not availed of such a remedy. However, if in case theyll win in the lower court whatever award may be granted, the amount given to them under the WCA should be deducted. The SC emphasized that if they would go strictly by the book in this case then the purpose of the law may be defeated. Idolatrous reverence for the letter of the law sacrifices the human being. The spirit of the law insures mans survival and ennobles him. As Shakespeare said, the letter of the law killeth but its spirit giveth life. HELD:

Republic vs Orbecido III Article 26 of the Family Code Divorce

On May 24, 1981, Cipriano Orbecido III married Lady Myros M. Villanueva at the United Church of Christ in the Philippines in Lam-an, Ozamis City. Their marriage was blessed with a son and a daughter, Kristoffer Simbortriz V. Orbecido and Lady Kimberly V. Orbecido. In 1986, Ciprianos wife left for the United States bringing along their son Kristoffer. A few years later, Cipriano discovered that his wife had been naturalized as an American citizen. Sometime in 2000, Ciprianolearned from his son that his wife had obtained a divorce decree and then married a certain Innocent Stanley. She,Stanley and her child by him currently live at 5566 A. Walnut Grove Avenue, San Gabriel, California. Cipriano thereafter filed with the trial court a petition for authority to remarry invoking Par 2 of Article 26 of the Family Code. No opposition was filed. Finding merit in the petition, the court granted the same. The Republic through the Office of the Solicitor General sought reconsideration but it was denied. ISSUE: Whether or not Orbecido can remarry under Art 26 of the FC. In view of the foregoing, the SC states the twin elements for the application of Paragraph 2 of Article 26 as follows: 1. There is a valid marriage that has been celebrated between a Filipino citizen and a foreigner; and 2. A valid divorce is obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating him or her to remarry. The reckoning point is not the citizenship of the parties at the time of the celebration of the marriage, but their citizenshipat the time a valid divorce is obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating the latter to remarry. In this case, when Ciprianos wife was naturalized as an American citizen, there was still a valid marriage that has been celebrated between her and Cipriano. As fate would have it, the naturalized alien wife subsequently obtained a valid divorce capacitating her to remarry. Clearly, the twin requisites for the application of Paragraph 2 of Article 26 are both present in this case. Thus Cipriano, the divorced Filipino spouse, should be allowed to remarry. However, since Cipriano was not able to prove as fact his wifes naturalization he is still barred from remarrying.

Justice Gutierrez dissenting No civil suit should prosper after claiming benefits under the WCA. If employers are already liable to pay benefits under the WCA they should not be compelled to bear the cost of damage suits or get insurance for that purpose. The exclusion provided by the WCA can only be properly removed by the legislature NOT the SC.

Ting v. Velez-Ting FACTS: On October 21, 1993, after being married for more than 18 years to petitioner and while their youngest child was only two yearsold, Carmen filed a verified petition before the RTC of Cebu City praying for the declaration of nullity of their marriage based on Article36 of the Family Code. She claimed that Benjamin suffered from psychological incapacity even at the time of the celebration of theirmarriage, which, however, only became manifest thereafter. On January 9, 1998, the lower court rendered its decision declaring the marriage between petitioner and respondent null andvoid. The RTC gave credence to Dr. Oates findings and the admissions made by Benjamin in the course of his deposition, and foundhim to be psychologically incapacitated to comply with the essential obligations of marriage. On October 19, 2000, the petitioner appealed to the CA, reversing the trial courts ruling. ISSUE: Whether or not the CA correctly ruled that the requirement of proof of psychological incapacity for the declaration of absolutenullity of marriage based on Article 36 of the Family Code has been liberalized. HELD: No, by the very nature of cases involving the application of Article 36, it is logical and understandable to give weight to theexpert opinions furnished by psychologists regarding the psychological temperament of parties in order to determine the root cause, juridical antecedence, gravity and incurability of the psychological incapacity. However, such opinions, while highly advisable, are notconditions sine qua non in granting petitions for declaration of nullity of marriage. At best, courts must treat such opinions as decisivebut not indispensable evidence in determining the merits of a given case. In fact, if the totality of evidence presented is enough tosustain a finding of psychological incapacity, then actual medical or psychological examination of the person concerned need not beresorted to. The trial court, as in any other given case presented before it, must always base its decision not solely on the expertopinions furnished by the parties but also on the totality of evidence adduced in the course of the proceedings. But where, as in this case, the parties had the full opportunity to present professional and expert opinions of psychiatriststracing the root cause, gravity and incurability of a partys alleged psychological incapacity, then such expert opinion should bepresented and, accordingly, be weighed by the court in deciding whether to grant a petition for nullity of marriage The petition for review on certiorari is GRANTED. Facts:

De Castro vs. Judicial and Bar Council GR No. 191002, March 17, 2010

The compulsory retirement of Chief Justice Reynato S. Puno by May 17, 2010 occurs just days after the coming presidential elections on May 10, 2010. Even before the event actually happens, it is giving rise to many legal dilemmas. This dilemma is rooted in consideration of Section 15, Art VII of the Constitution prohibiting the President or Acting President from making appointments within two months immediately before the next presidential election and up to the end of his term, except when temporary appointments to executive positions when continued vacancies will prejudice public service or endanger public safety. However, Section 4 (1), Art VIII of the Constitution also provides that any vacancy in the Supreme Court shall be filled within 90 days from occurrence. The question leads to who should appoint the next Chief Justice and may the JBC resume the process of screening candidates should the incumbent president not prohibited to do so. May a mandamus lie to compel the submission of JBCs nominees to the president? This issue at hand truly is impressed with transcendental importance to the Nation. A lot of petitions were received by the court from a mandamus to prohibitions. We limit our discussion with GR 191002 for brevity. Issues: Whether or not the case at bar is an actual controversy. Whether or not the petitioners have legal standing to file said petition. Ratio Decidendi: The court held the case being premature because the Judicial and Bar Council has until May 17, 2010 at the least within which to submit the list of nominees to the President to fill the vacancy created by the compulsory retirement of Chief Justice Puno. The petitioner here asserts his right as citizen filing the petition on behalf of the public who are directly affected by the issue of the appointment. The question raised before the court is in fact of transcendental importance. The court dispels all doubt to remove any obstacle or obstruction to the resolution of the essential issue squarely presented. Standing is a peculiar concept to constitutional law because in some cases, suits are not brought by parties who have been personally injured by the operation of law or any other government act but by concerned citizens, taxpayers or voters who actually sue in the public interest.

The court dismissed the petitions for certiorari and mandamus in GR 191002 and GR 191149 and the petition for mandamus in GR no. 191057 for being premature; dismissal of the petitions for prohibition in GR 191032 and GR 191342 for lack of merit; and grants the in AM No. 10-2-5-SC and accordingly directs the JBC to: resume proceedings for the nomination of candidates, prepare short list of nominees for the said position, submit to the incumbent President the short list of nominees, and to continue proceedings for the nomination of candidates to fill other vacancies in the Judiciary and submit to the President the short list of nominees corresponding thereto in accordance with this decision.

G.R. No. 179271 - BANAT (Barangay Association for Advancement and National Transparency) vs COMELEC. COMELEC denied the motion and in response, pointed out that the MINERO ruling is squarely in point, as MINERO failed to get 2% of the votes in 2001 and did not participate at all in the 2004 elections. Issue: Whether the MINERO ruling can be use as a legal basis in delisting PGBI. Held:

Philippine Guardians Brotherhood, Inc vs COMELEC G.R. No. 190529 Ponente: Justice Brion

According to the Court, the MINERO ruling is an erroneous application of Section 6(8) of RA 7941; hence, it cannot sustain PGBI's delisting from the roster of registered national, regional or sectoral parties, organizations or coalitions under the party-list system. First the law is clear in that the word "or" is a disjunctive term signifying disassociation and independence of one thing from the other things enumerated; it should, as a rule, be construed in the sense in which it ordinarily implies, as a disjunctive word. Thus, the plain, clear and unmistakable language of the law provides for two separate reasons for delisting. Second, MINERO is diametrically opposed to the legislative intent of Section 6(8) of RA 7941 and therefore, simply cannot stand. Its basic defect lies in its characterization of the non-participation of a party-list organization in an election as similar to a failure to garner the 2% threshold party-list vote. What MINERO effectively holds is that a party list organization that does not participate in an election necessarily gets, by default, less than 2% of the party-list votes. To be sure, this is a confused interpretation of the law, given the law's clear and categorical language and the legislative intent to treat the two scenarios differently. A delisting based on a mixture or fusion of these two different and separate grounds for delisting is therefore a strained application of the law - in jurisdictional terms, it is an interpretation not within the contemplation of the framers of the law and hence is a gravely abusive interpretation of the law. Instead, what should be taken into account is the ruling in BANAT vs COMELEC where the 2% party-list vote requirement provided in RA 7941 is partly invalidated. The Court rules that, in computing the allocation of additional seats, the continued operation of the two percent threshold for the distribution of the additional seats as found in the second clause of Section 11(b) of R.A. No. 7941 is unconstitutional; it finds that the two percent threshold makes it mathematically impossible to achieve the maximum number of available party list seats when the number of available party list seats exceeds 50.The continued operation of the two

Facts: The Philippine Guardians Brotherhood, Inc. (PGBI) files a petition for review and a motion for reconsideration to nullify Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Resolution No. 8679 dated October 13, 2009 insofar as it relates to PGBI and the Resolution dated December 9, 2009. These resolutions delisted PGBI from the roster of registered national, regional or sectoral parties, organizations or coalitions under the party-list system. According to Section 6(8) of Republic Act No. 7941, known as PartyList System Act, COMELEC, upon verified complaint of any interested party, may remove or cancel, after due notice and hearing, the registration of any national, regional or sectoral party, organization or coalition if: (1) it fails to participate in the last two preceding elections or (2)fails to obtain at least two per centum (2%) of the votes cast under the party-list system in the two preceding elections for the constituency in which it has registered. For May 2010 Elections, the COMELEC en banc issued Resolution No. 8679 deleting several party-list groups or organizations from the list of registered national, regional or sectoral parties, organizations or coalitions. Among the party-list organizations affected was PGBI; it was delisted because it failed to get 2% of the votes cast in 2004 and it did not participate in the 2007 elections. PGBI filed its opposition to Resolution No. 8679 and likewise, sought for accreditation as a party-list organization. One of the arguments cited is that the Supreme Court's ruling in G.R. No. 177548 MINERO (Philippine Mines Safety Environment Association) vs COMELEC cannot apply in the instant controversy. One of the reasons is because the factual milieu of the cited case is removed from PGBI's. Additionally, the requirement of Section 6(8) has been relaxed by the Court's ruling in

percent threshold in the distribution of the additional seats frustrates the attainment of the permissive ceiling that 20% of the members of the House of Representatives shall consist of party-list representatives. To reiterate, Section 6(8) of RA 7941 provides for two separate grounds for delisting; these grounds cannot be mixed or combined to support delisting; and the disqualification for failure to garner 2% party-list votes in two preceding elections should now be understood, in light of the BANAT ruling, to mean failure to qualify for a party-list seat in two preceding elections for the constituency in which it has registered. This is how Section 6(8) of RA 7941 should be understood and applied under the authority of the Supreme Court to state what the law is and as an exception to the application of the principle of stare decisis (to adhere to precedents and not to unsettle things which are established). The most compelling reason to abandon MINERO and strike it out from ruling case law is that it was clearly an erroneous application of the law - an application that the principle of stability or predictability of decisions alone cannot sustain. MINERO did unnecessary violence to the language of the law, the intent of the legislature and to the rule of law in general. Therefore, the Supreme Court grants PGBIs petition and accordingly, annul COMELEC Resolution No. 8679 dated October 13, 2009 insofar as the petitioner PGBI is concerned and the Resolution dated December 9, 2009 which denied PGBI's motion for reconsideration. PGBI is qualified to be voted upon as a party-list group or organization in the May 2010 elections. Michael Padua vs People of the Philippines GR 168546 (July 23, 2008) Facts: Petitioner, who was then 17 years old, was involved in selling illegal drugs. Initially in his arraignment he pleaded not guilty but re-entered his plea of guilty to avail the benefits of firs time offenders. Subsequently, he applied for probation but was denied. In his petition for certiorari, the court said that probation and suspension of sentence are different and provisions in PD 603 or RA 9344 cannot be invoked to avail probation. It is specifically stated that in drug trafficking, application for probation should be denied. As a side issue, the court discussed the availment of suspension of sentence under RA 9344. ISSUE Whether suspension of sentence under RA 9344 can still be invoked given the fact that the accused is now 21 years old.

HELD NO. The suspension of sentence under Section 38 of Rep. Act No. 9344 could no longer be retroactively applied for petitioners benefit. Section 38 of Rep. Act No. 9344 provides that once a child under 18 years of age is found guilty of the offense charged, instead of pronouncing the judgment of conviction, the court shall place the child in conflict with the law under suspended sentence. Section 40 of Rep. Act No. 9344, however, provides that once the child reaches 18 years of age, the court shall determine whether to discharge the child, order execution of sentence, or extend the suspended sentence for a certain specified period or until the child reaches the maximum age of 21 years. Petitioner has already reached 21 years of age or over and thus, could no longer be considered a child for purposes of applying Rep. Act 9344. Thus, the application of Sections 38 and 40 appears moot and academic as far as his case is concerned. Garcia v. COMELEC (supra, see p.93)Paras v. COMELEC Facts: Paras is the incumbent Punong Barangay of Pula,Cabanatuan City who won during the last regular barangay electionin 1994. A petition for his recall as Punong Barangay was filed by the registered voters of the barangay. Acting on the petition for recall, COMELEC resolved to approve the petition, scheduled the petition signing on October 14, 1995, and set the recall election on November 13, 1995. At least 29.30% of the registered voters signed. The COMELEC, however, deferred the recall election in view of petitioners opposition. On December 6, 1995, the COMELEC set a new the recall election, this time on December 16, 1995. Top revent the holding of the recall election, petitioner filed before the RTC a petition for injunction. The RTC issued a TRO. After conducting a summary hearing, the trial court lifted the restraining order, dismissed the petition and required petitioner and his counsel to explain why they should not be cited for contempt form is representing that the barangay recall election was without COMELEC approval. In a resolution dated January 5, 1996, the COMELEC, for the third time, re-scheduled the recall election on January 13, 1996; hence, the instant petition for certiorari with urgent prayer for injunction. On January 12, 1996, the Court issued a TRO and required the OSG to comment on the petition. In view of the OSGls manifestation maintaining an opinion adverse to that of the COMELEC, the latter through its law department filed the required comment. Petitioner thereafter filed a reply .Issue: WON the recall election may be barred by the SK elections. Section 74 (b), LGC: no recall shall take place within one (1)year from the date of the officials assumption to office or one (1) year immediately preceding a regular local election P: the scheduled January 13, 1996 recall election is now barred as the SK) election was set on the first Monday of May 1996. Petitioner maintains that as the SK election is a regular local election, hence no recall election can be had for barely four months separate the SK election from there call election. It is a rule in statutory construction that every part of the statute must be interpreted with reference to the context,i.e., that every part of the statute must be considered together with the other parts, and kept subservient to the general intent of the whole enactment. The evident intent of Section 74 is to subject an elective local official to recall election once during his term of office. Paragraph (b)construed together with paragraph (a) merely designates the period

when such elective local official may be subject of a recall election, that is, during the second year of his term of office. Thus, subscribing to petitioners interpretation of the phrase regular local election to include the SK election will unduly circumscribe the novel provision of the LGC on recall, a mode of removal of public officers by initiation of the people before the end of his term. And if the SK election which is set by R.A. No. 7808 to be held every three years from May 1996 were to be deemed within the purview of the phrase regular local election, as erroneously insisted by petitioner, then no recall election can be conducted rendering inutile the recall provision of the LGC. In the interpretation of a statute, the Court should start with the assumption that the legislature intended to enact an effective law, and the legislature is not presumed to have done a vain thing in the enactment of a statute. An interpretation should, if possible, be avoided under which a statute or provision being construed is defeated, or as otherwise expressed, nullified, destroyed, emasculated, repealed, explained away, or rendered insignificant, meaningless, inoperative or nugatory. It is likewise a basic precept in statutory construction that a statute should be interpreted in harmony with the Constitution. Thus, the interpretation of Section 74 of the LGC, specifically paragraph (b) thereof, should not be in conflict with the Constitutional mandate of Section 3 of Article X of the Constitution to enact a LGC which shall provide for a more responsive and accountable local government structure instituted through a system of decentralization with effective mechanisms of recall, initiative, and referendum. The spirit, rather than the letter of a law determines its construction; hence, a statute, as in this case, must be read according to its spirit and intent. Recall election is potentially disruptive of the normal working of the local government unit necessitating additional expenses, hence the prohibition against the conduct of recall election one year immediately preceding the regular local election. The proscription is due to the proximity of the next regular election for the office of the local elective official concerned. The electorate could choose the officials replacement in the said election who certainly has a longer tenure in office than a success or elected through a recall election. It would, therefore, be more in keeping with the intent of the recall provision of the Code to construe regular local election as one referring to an election where the office held by the local elective officials ought to be recalled will be contested and be filled by the electorate. Nevertheless, recall at this time is no longer possible because of the limitation stated under Section 74 (b) of the Code considering that the next regular election involving the barangay office concerned is barely seven (7) months away, the same having been scheduled on May 1997.