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153859; DECEMBER 11,

2003; PUNO, J.:
A complaint for illegal dismissal and monetary claims were filed by private respondents
against their employer, Filipinas Systems, Inc. (Filsystems for brevity). Filsystems failed to file
its position paper in spite of the order of the Labor Arbiter prompting the Labor Arbiter to
decide in favor of respondents in the illegal dismissal complaints and awarded their monetary
claims. Filsystems appealed to the NLRC submitting for the first time evidence showing that
respondents were project employees whose dismissal was due to the discontinuation of the
project they were assigned. Respondents questioned the jurisdiction of the NLRC over the
appeal as petitioner belatedly file the appeal bond however, the NLRC assumed jurisdiction and
remanded the case to the Labor Arbiter for further proceedings. Respondents motion for
reconsideration was denied so they appeal to the CA via a Petition for Certiorari. The CA ruled
that the NLRC lacks jurisdiction over the appeal for late filing of the appeal bond and reinstated
the Labor Arbiters decision. Peitioners motion for reconsideration was denied.
ISSUE: Whether or not the NLRC acquired jurisdiction over petitioners appeal?
Art. 223 of the Labor Code and Section 1 of the NLRC Rules of Procedure provide a ten
(10)-day period from receipt of the decision of the Arbiter to file an appeal together with an
appeal bond if the decision involves a monetary award. Records showed that petitioners
received a copy of the Arbiters decision on October 31. Their memorandum of appeal was dated
November 9, but their appeal bond was executed only on November 17; no partial payment of
the bond was made within the reglementary period nor did they submit an explanation for its
late filing. Thereof, the late filing of the bond divested the NLRC of its jurisdiction to entertain
petitioners appeal. Further, petitioners failed to submit their evidence to the Labor Arbiter in
spite of the opportunities given them and submit the evidence instead to the NLRC when the
decision became adverse to them. The Court dismissed the petition; the decision of the Labor
Arbiter was reinstated with the modification that if reinstatement of respondents is not feasible,
petitioner should pay their separation pay in accordance with law.


Petitioner contended that a sheriff of the NLRC erroneously and unlawfully levied
certain properties which it claims as its own. It filed a 3rd party claim with the Labor Arbiter and
recovery of property and damages with the RTC. The RTC dismissed the case. In the CA, the
court dismissed the petition on the ground of forum shopping and that the proper remedy was
appeal in due course, not certiorari or mandamus. Petitioner filed a MFR and argued that the
filing of a complaint for accion reinvindicatoria with the RTC was proper because it is a remedy
specifically granted to an owner (whose properties were subjected to a writ of execution to
enforce a decision rendered in a labor dispute in which it was not a party). The MFR was denied.
Hence, petitioner filed this appeal.
ISSUE: Whether the CA has jurisdiction over the case?
A third party whose property has been levied upon by a sheriff to enforce a decision
against a judgment debtor is afforded with several alternative remedies to protect its interests.
The third party may avail himself of alternative remedies cumulatively, and one will not
preclude the third party from availing himself of the other alternative remedies in the event he
failed in the remedy first availed of.
Thus, a third party may avail himself of the following alternative remedies:
a) File a third party claim with the sheriff of the Labor Arbiter, and
b) If the third party claim is denied, the third party may appeal the denial to the NLRC.
Even if a third party claim was denied, a third party may still file a proper action with a
competent court to recover ownership of the property illegally seized by the sheriff.
The filing of a third party claim with the Labor Arbiter and the NLRC did not preclude the
petitioner from filing a subsequent action for recovery of property and damages with the
Regional Trial Court. And, the institution of such complaint will not make petitioner guilty of
forum shopping.


The Philippine Journalists, Inc. (PJI) is a domestic corporation engaged in the
publication and sale of newspapers and magazines. The exclusive bargaining agent of all the
rank-and-file employees in the company is the Journal Employees Union (Union for brevity).
Sometime in April 2005, the Union filed a notice of strike before the National
Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB), claiming that PJI was guilty of unfair labor practice.
PJI was then going to implement a retrenchment program due to "over-staffing or bloated work
force and continuing actual losses sustained by the company for the past three years resulting in
negative stockholders equity of P127.0 million." The Secretary of the Department of Labor and
Employment (DOLE) certified the labor dispute to the National Labor Relations Commission
(NLRC) for compulsory arbitration pursuant to Article 263 (g) of the Labor Code.
Thus, the NLRC declared that the retrenchment of 31 employees was illegal and ordered
their reinstatement "to their former position without loss of seniority rights and other benefits,
with payment of unpaid salaries, bonuses and backwages from the date of dismissal up to the
actual date of reinstatement plus 10% of the total monetary award as attorney's fees." PJI was
adjudged liable in the total amount of P6,447,008.57.
Thereafter, the parties executed a Compromise Agreement.
Thus, the compromise agreement was approved and NCMB-NCR-NS-03-087-00 was deemed
closed and terminated.
In the meantime, however, the Union filed another Notice of Strike .The Union claimed
that 29 employees were illegally dismissed from employment, and that the salaries and benefits
of 50 others had been illegally reduced. Thus the NLRC GRANTED this Petition.
ISSUE: Whether an NLRC Resolution, which includes a pronouncement that the members of a
union had been illegally dismissed, is abandoned or rendered "moot and academic" by a
compromise agreement subsequently entered into between the dismissed employees and the
employer; this, in turn, raises the question of whether such a compromise agreement constitutes
res judicata to a new complaint later filed by other union members-employees, not parties to the
agreement, who likewise claim to have been illegally dismissed?
The nature of a compromise is spelled out in Article 2028 of the New Civil Code: it is "a
contract whereby the parties, by making reciprocal concessions, avoid litigation or put an end to
one already commenced."
Thus, a judgment rendered in accordance with a compromise agreement is not
appealable, and is immediately executory unless a motion is filed to set aside the agreement on
the ground of fraud, mistake, or duress, in which case an appeal may be taken against the order
denying the motion. Under Article 2037 of the Civil Code, "a compromise has upon the parties
the effect and authority of res judicata," even when effected without judicial approval; and under
the principle of res judicata, an issue which had already been laid to rest by the parties
themselves can no longer be relitigated.


Petitioner is a semi-governmental hospital in Cagayan De Oro and Employing forty-one
(41) employees. Aside from salary and living allowances, the employees are given food, but the
amount of which is deducted from their respective salaries. On May 3, 1986, ten (10) employees
filed a complaint with the Regional Director of Labor and Employment, Region 10,
for underpayment of their salaries and ECOLAS. Consequently, the Regional Director directed
two of his labor standard and welfare officers to investigate and ascertain the truth of the
allegations in the complaint. Based on the report and recommendation, the Regional Director
issued an order dated August 4, 1986, directing payment of 723, 888.58, to all the petitioners
employees. The Secretary of Labor likewise affirmed the Decision and dismissed the Motion for
Reconsideration of the petitioner. In a petition for certiorari, petitioner questioned the
jurisdiction of the Regional Director and the all-embracing applicability of the award involving
salary differentials and ECOLAS, in that it covers not only the hospitals employees who signed
the complaints, but also those who are not signatories to the complaint, and those who were no
longer in the service of the hospital at the time the complaint was filed.
ISSUES: 1. Whether or not the Regional Director had jurisdiction over the case; and 2.
Whether or not the Regional Director erred in extending the award to all hospital employees?
1.YES. This is Labor Standard case, and is governed by Article 128 (b) of the Labor Code , as
amended by E.O. No. 111.
Labor standards refer to the minimum requirements prescribed by existing laws, rules, and
regulations relating to wages, hours of work, cost of living allowance and other monetary and
welfare benefits, including occupational, safety, and health standards (Section 7, Rule I,Rules on
the Disposition of Labor Standards Cases in the Regional Office, dated September 16, 1987)
Under the present rules, a Regional Director exercises Both visitorial and enforcement power
over labor standards cases, and is therefore empowered to adjudicate money claims, provided
there still exists an employer-employee relationship, and the findings of the regional office is not
contested by the employer concerned. We believedthat even in the absence of E. O. No. 111,
Regional Directors already had enforcement powers over money claims, effective under P.D. No.
850, issued on December 16, 1975, which transferred labor standards cases from the arbitration
system to the enforcement system.
2. NO. The justification for the award to this group of employees who were not signatories to
the complaint is that the visitorial and enforcement powers given to the Secretatry of Labor.
Labor is relevant to, and exercisable over establishments, not over individual
members/employees, because what is sought to be achieved by its exercise is the observance of,
and/ or compliance by such firm/establishment with the labor standards regulations. However,
there is no legal justification for the award in favor of those employees who were nolonger
connected with the hospital t the time the complaint was filed. Article 129 of the Labor Code in
aid of the enforcement power of the Regional Director is not applicable where the employee
seeking to be paid is separated from service. His claim is purely money claim that has to be
subject of arbitration proceedings and therefore within the original and exclusive jurisdiction of
the Labor Arbiter.


No. 138305. September 22, 2004; SANDOVAL-GUTIERREZ, J.:
The controversy at bar arose from a complaint filed with the Office of the Voluntary
Arbitrator, National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB) by the Manila Midtown Hotel
Employees Labor Union (MMHELU-NUWHRAIN), respondent union, against the Manila
Midtown Hotel, petitioner, docketed as VA Case No. 026. The complainant prayed for the
reinstatement of respondent union members concerned or payment of their separation pay, plus
their full backwages and other privileges and benefits, or their monetary equivalent, considering
that they were illegally dismissed from the service.
Petitioner filed a motion to dismiss the complaint alleging that the Labor Arbiter, not the
Office of the Voluntary Arbitrator, has jurisdiction over the case of illegal dismissal. Upon its
denial, petitioner, petitioner filed with this Court a petition for review on certiorari, ascribing to
the Court of Appeals the lone error of sustaining the Voluntary Arbitrators issuance of a writ of
execution, but it was denied.
ISSUE: Whether or not Certiorari to CA is the proper available remedy of the petitioners at
Upon receipt of a copy of the Voluntary Arbitrators Decision, petitioner should have
filed with the Court of Appeals, within the 15-day reglementary period, a petition for review, not
a petition for certiorari, which is not a substitute for a lapsed appeal.
Clearly, the Court of Appeals did not err in sustaining the Voluntary Arbitrators Order
directing the issuance of a writ of execution.
Article 262-A of the Labor Code, as amended, provides:
ART. 262-A. Procedures. - x x x.
The award or decision of the Voluntary Arbitrator or panel of Voluntary Arbitrators shall
contain the facts and the law on which it is based. It shall be final and executory after ten (10)
calendar days from receipt of the copy of the award or decision by the parties.
Upon motion of any interested party, the Voluntary Arbitrator or panel of Voluntary Arbitrators
or the Labor Arbiter in the region where the movant resides, in case of the absence or incapacity
of the Voluntary Arbitrator or panel of Voluntary Arbitrators for any reason, may issue a writ of
execution requiring either the sheriff of the Commission or regular courts or any public official
whom the parties may designate in the submission agreement to execute the final decision,
order or award.
In Alviado vs. MJG General Merchandize,[5] we ruled:
The finality of a decision is a jurisdictional event that cannot be made to depend on the
convenience of a party. Such a definitive judgment is no longer subject to change, revision,
amendment or reversal and the court loses jurisdiction over it, except to order its execution.
Indeed, once a decision or resolution becomes final and executory, it is the ministerial
duty of the court or tribunal to order its execution. Such order, we repeat, is not appealable.
One final note. Even if we consider petitioners petition for certiorari as an ordinary
appeal (petition for review), still the Court of Appeals did not err in affirming the Voluntary
Arbitrators Decision of January 18, 1999 which declared that respondent union members were
illegally dismissed from the service. In fact, records show that petitioner has not questioned the
Appellate Courts finding that the termination of respondent union members is illegal.