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CASE 1: MADRIA VS. RIVERA (A.C. NO.

11256, MARCH 7, 2017)

 Summary of the violation/s done based on the facts of the case:

On November 2002, the respondent Atty. Rivera gave his legal services to the
complainant Madria and assured her that she had a strong case, and guaranteed
that he could obtain for her the decree of annulment. On April 2003, the
complainant’s daughter received a copy of the trial court’s decision signed by
Judge Lyliha Abella Aquino of the RTC Branch 4 in Tuguegarao City and a
certificate of finality dated September 26, 2003 signed by one Jacinto C. Danao
in the same branch. Believing that these documents were authentic, complainant
used it for the renewal of her passport which made her an object of investigation
by the NBI and caused her to faced criminal charges for violation of Philippine
Passport Act. She then filed a case against respondent Atty. Rivera for simulation
of a court decision granting the petition for annulment of her marriage and a
certificate of finality of the annulment petition.

 Provision/s of the CPR that were violated:

1. Canon 1 – A lawyer shall uphold the Constitution, over the laws of the land
and promote respect for law and legal processes.

Rule 1.01 – A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or


deceitful conduct.

Rule 1.02 – A lawyer shall not counsel or abet activities aimed at defiance of
the law or at lessening confidence in the legal system.

2. CANON 15 – A lawyer shall observe candor, fairness, and loyalty in all his
dealings and transactions with his clients.

Rule 15.07. – A lawyer shall impress upon his client compliance with the laws
And the principles of fairness.

3. CANON 18 - A lawyer shall serve his client with competence and diligence.

Rule 18.04 – A lawyer shall keep the client informed of the status of his case

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And shall respond within a reasonable time to the client’s
request for information.

 Penalty imposed

Supreme Court adopted the findings and recommendation of the IBP Board of
Governors for the respondent to be disbarred and his name stricken from the Roll
of Attorneys.

 Why and what could have caused the lawyer to commit the act?

The bottom reason of why the respondent committed such act was his
greediness for money. An ordinary man would know that falsification or forgery is
crime, it is worse with the respondent’s case because he is a lawyer. His
deliberate falsification of the court decision and the certificate of finality of the
decision reflected a high degree of moral turpitude on his part, and made a
mockery of the administration of justice in the country.

 Problem areas in Legal Ethics exposed in the case

In the case at bar, respondent lawyer took advantage of the trust and
confidence that the complainant gave to him.

 Has CPR fully addressed the concern’s involved?

Yes. CPR has fully addressed the case at bar. The respondent tried to shift
the blame to his client as if that would hold water. He is the lawyer, he is aware
and bound by the ethical canons of the CPR. The moral standards of the Legal
Profession expected the respondent to act with the highest degree of
professionalism, decency, and nobility in the course of their practice of law. That
he turned his back on such standards exhibited his baseness, lack of moral
character, dishonesty, lack of probity and general unworthiness to continue as an
officer of the Court.

 Lesson/s learned in the case applied in future lawyering endeavor

In every individual, there is an innate urge in us to do and be good and that


bar took a notch higher for lawyers. For they are considered the upholder and

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protector of law. The profession was born to help the vulnerable and
downtrodden. The case at bar will always be a reminder for me on what the
profession is all about. It is about honesty. Being honest means being truthful or
fair and being those means one is noble and never taking advantage of the trust
that a client will give to me.

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CASE 2: PADILLA VS. SAMSON (A.C. NO. 10253, AUGUST 22, 2017)

 Summary of the violation/s done based on the facts of the case:

This case stemmed from a complaint filed by Rafael Padilla against his former
lawyer, Atty. Glenn Samson, for behavior unbecoming of a lawyer. Padilla
contends that Samson suddenly cut all communications with him, which almost
caused him to miss the due date for the filing of a required pleading. He even
wrote a demand letter asking the respondent to withdraw his appearance and
return all the documents pertinent to his case, but to no avail. Padilla has also
been asking the respondent lawyer for the refund of his overpayment amounting
to P19, 074.00.

 Provision/s of the CPR that were violated:


1. CANON 15 – A lawyer shall observe candor, fairness and loyalty in all his
dealings and transactions with his clients.

2. CANON 17 - A lawyer owes fidelity to the cause of his client and he shall be
mindful of the trust and confidence reposed in him.

3. CANON 18 - A lawyer shall serve his client with competence and diligence.

Rule 18.03 - A lawyer shall not neglect a legal matter entrusted to him, and
his negligence in connection therewith shall render him liable.

4. CANON 19 - A lawyer shall represent his client with zeal within the bounds of
the law.

Rule 19.01 - A lawyer shall employ only fair and honest means to attain the
lawful objectives of his client and shall not present, participate in presenting
or threaten to present unfounded criminal charges to obtain an improper
advantage in any case or proceeding.

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 Penalty imposed

Supreme Court suspends Atty. Glenn Samson from the practice of law for a
period of two (2) years, and order him to return to the complainant all the
documents and properties entrusted to him and the amount of Pl9,074.00 as
overpayment of fees, with interest at the rate of six percent.

 Why and what could have caused the lawyer to commit the act?

The arrogance of the respondent lawyer caused him to commit the act.
Ordinarily, lawyers may decline employment and refuse to accept representation,
if they are not in a position to carry it out effectively or competently. But once they
agree to handle a case, attorneys are required by the Canons of Professional
Responsibility (CPR) to undertake the task with zeal, care, and utmost devotion.
Acceptance of money from a client establishes an attorney-client relationship and
gives rise to the duty of fidelity to the client's cause. Every case which a lawyer
accepts deserves full attention, diligence, skill, and competence, regardless of
importance.

 Problem areas in Legal Ethics exposed in the case

In the case at bar, respondent lawyer suffered from conflict of duties. His
inability to properly discharge his duty to his client diminishes the confidence of
the public in the integrity and dignity of the legal profession.

 Has CPR fully addressed the concern’s involved?

Yes. The CPR has fully addressed the case at bar but the Court should have
handed down a more severe penalty for his actions. This is not just about his
disregard of his professional responsibility but also the effect of his actions
towards his client. There might be a long term consequence of his neglect to his

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client which the two-year suspension is not an equivalent penalty for his
arrogance.

 Lesson/s learned in the case applied in future lawyering endeavor

When I will offer my legal services to a client and has accepted money. I need
to remember that when a person accepts my legal services, this creates a
relationship which deserves full attention, diligence, care, and utmost devotion.
And I also need to be honest and candid to my client. Give my best opinion on
the merits of the case or lack thereof. This might just be another job for me but for
the client specially those who doesn’t have the luxury or the means to finance the
case, and still they pursue this with a belief that they should be vindicated of the
wrong accused on them or the right that should be pursued.

CASE 3: TUMBAGA VS. TEOXON (A.C. NO. 5573, NOVEMBER 21, 2017)

 Summary of the violation/s done based on the facts of the case:

An administrative complaint filed by complainant Gizale O. Tumbaga against


respondent Atty. Manuel P. Teoxon, charging him with gross immorality, deceitful
and fraudulent conduct, and gross misconduct for misrepresentation that he was
eligible to marry the complainant.

 Provision/s of the CPR that were violated:

1. CANON 1, Rule 1.01 - A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest,


immoral or deceitful conduct.

2. CANON 7 - A lawyer shall at all times uphold the integrity and dignity of the
legal profession, and support the activities of the Integrated Bar.

Rule 7.03 - A lawyer shall not engage in conduct that adversely reflects on his
fitness to practice law, nor should he, whether in public or private
life, behave in a scandalous manner to the discredit of the legal
profession.

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 Penalty imposed

Supreme Court suspends Atty. Manuel P. Teoxon from the practice of law for a
period of three (3) years.

 Why and what could have caused the lawyer to commit the act?

The respondent thinks that he can circumvent the law to his favor and get
away with the consequences of his action.
 Problem areas in Legal Ethics exposed in the case

Problem areas exposed in this case is the nobleness of the practice of law as
a profession.

 Has CPR fully addressed the concern’s involved?

Yes. But the punishment for such disregard on the high moral standard of legal
profession should be more severe than what was accorded to him. Accordingly, it is
expected that every lawyer, being an officer of the Court must not only be in fact of
good moral character, but must also be seen to be of good moral character and
leading lives in accordance with the highest moral standards of the community. More
specifically, a member of the Bar and officer of the Court is required not only to
refrain from adulterous relationships or keeping mistresses but also to conduct
himself as to avoid scandalizing the public by creating the belief that he is flouting
those moral standards. If the practice of law is to remain an honorable profession
and attain its basic ideals, whoever is enrolled in its ranks should not only master its
tenets and principles but should also, in their lives, accord continuing fidelity to them.
The requirement of good moral character is of much greater import, as far as the
general public is concerned, than the possession of legal learning.

Immoral conduct has been described as conduct that is so willful, flagrant, or


shameless as to show indifference to the opinion of good and respectable members
of the community. To be the basis of disciplinary action, such conduct must not only
be immoral, but grossly immoral, that is, it must be so corrupt as to virtually
constitute a criminal act or so unprincipled as to be reprehensible to a high degree or

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committed under such scandalous or revolting circumstances as to shock the
common sense of decency.

 Lesson/s learned in the case applied in future lawyering endeavor

I wished to describe the kind of man the respondent was but it failed me. I fail
to understand why he needs to take another woman when he already has a wife
which I’m sure he legally acquired. Not only did he destroyed any bright future the
complainant might have but he also compromised any bright future that the child
they have which he personally refused to acknowledged. He filed a case just to
get his belongings and deny any involvement with her. He even referred the case
as politically motivated by the opposing party of where he is employed. The
emotional and psychological abused that the complainant suffered is too much.
He doesn’t deserve to be in the legal profession. I might be a woman but I am not
going to use this profession in the future to abuse a human being.

CASE 4: FOSTER VS. AGTANG (A.C. NO. 10579, December 10, 2014)

 Summary of the violation/s done based on the facts of the case:

In 2009, Erlinda Foster engaged the services of Atty. Jaime Agtang in a realty
dispute in Ilocos Norte. Agtang’s acceptance fee was P20,000.00 plus P5,000.00
for incidental expenses.

For the case, Agtang collected P150,000.00 from Foster as filing fee. He also
advised Foster to shell out a total of P50,000.00 for them to bribe the judge and
get a favorable decision. Although reluctant, Foster gave in to Agtang’s demands.

On various occasions, Agtang borrowed money from Foster for his personal
use, i.e., car repair. Such loan amounted to P122,000.00. Foster, being prudent,
asked for receipts for all funds she handed over to Agtang.

Later however, Foster learned that she lost the case due to Agtang’s
negligence and incompetence in drafting the complaint. She also found out that
the filing fee therefor was only P22,410 (not P150k). Further, it turned out that
Agtang was once the lawyer of the opposing party. When she asked Agtang to

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return her the balance, the said lawyer failed to do so hence, she filed an
administrative complaint against Agtang.

 Provision/s of the CPR that were violated:

1. Canon 1 - A lawyer shall uphold the constitution, obey the laws of the land
and promoted respect for law and legal processes.

2. CANON 15, Rule 15.03 A lawyer shall not represent conflicting interests
except by written consent of all concerned given after a full disclosure of the
facts.

3. CANON 16 - A lawyer shall hold in trust all moneys and properties of his
client that may come into his profession.

Rule 16.05. A lawyer shall not borrow money from his client unless the client’s
interest are fully protected by the nature of the case or by independent advice.
Neither shall a lawyer lend money to a client except, when in the interest of
justice, he has to advance necessary expenses in a legal matter he is
handling for the client.

 Penalty imposed

The respondent lawyer was found guilty of gross misconduct in violation of the
Code of Professional Responsibility, and he was also disbarred practice of law

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and to pay the complainant the amounts of ₱127,590.00, ₱50,000.00 and
₱2,500.00.

 Why and what could have caused the lawyer to commit the act?

Maybe the respondent was financially challenged because of age and few
people are hiring his legal services or he was thinking that the complainant was
financially able why not take advantage of it.
 Problem areas in Legal Ethics exposed in the case

In the case at bar, respondent lawyer took advantage of the trust and
confidence that the complainant gave to him. He also suffered from conflict of
interest.

 Has CPR fully addressed the concern’s involved?

Yes. CPR has fully addressed the case at bar. Rule 16.04, Canon 16 of the Code
of Professional Responsibility states that “a lawyer shall not borrow money from his
client unless the client’s interests are fully protected by the nature of the case or by
independent advice. Neither shall a lawyer lend money to a client except, when in
the interest of justice, he has to advance necessary expenses in a legal matter he is
handling for the client.”

In the first place, Agtang should have never borrowed from Foster, his client.
Second, his refusal to pay reflects his baseness. Deliberate failure to pay just debts
constitutes gross misconduct, for which a lawyer may be sanctioned with suspension
from the practice of law. The acts of the Agtang constitute malpractice and gross
misconduct in his office as attorney. His incompetence and appalling indifference to
his duty to his client, the courts and society render him unfit to continue discharging
the trust reposed in him as a member of the Bar.

 Lesson/s learned in the case applied in future lawyering endeavor

In this case, Agtang is guilty of engaging in dishonest and deceitful conduct,


both in his professional and private capacity. As a future lawyer, respect should

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be maintained and the high moral standard of the legal profession must be
observed.

CASE 5: HEINZ VS. JUDGE SANTOS (401 SCRA 46 (2003))

 Summary of the violation/s done based on the facts of the case:

Heinz R. Heck is one of the defendants in a Civil Case before the RTC
presided by Judge Anthony E. Santos. Heck and his co-defendant did not receive
a copy of the order to schedule the trial on June 10 and 11, 1996. Consequently,
they and their counsel failed to appear therein. Since only the plaintiff’s counsel,
Atty. Manuel Singson, appeared in that hearing, Judge Santos considered the
non-attendance of Heck and his co-defendant as waiver of their right to present
evidence. Judge Santos thereafter ordered that the case to be submitted for
decision. He therefore authorized Atty. Singson to prepare the draft of the
decision. The decision issued by Judge Santos was copied verbatim from the
draft which Atty. Singson prepared. Hence, Heck filed an
administrative complaint charging Judge Santos with violation of Section 1, Rule
36 of the Revised Rules of Court.

 Provision/s of the CPR that were violated:

1. Canon 1 – A lawyer shall uphold the Constitution, over the laws of the land
and promote respect for law and legal processes.

Rule 1.01 – A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or


deceitful conduct.

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2. CANON 10, Rule 10.01 – A lawyer shall not do any falsehood, nor consent to
the doing of any in Court; nor shall he mislead, or allow the Court to be
misled by any artifice.

 Penalty imposed

Supreme Court found respondent judge guilty of notarizing documents without


the requisite notarial commission and was ordered to pay the fine of P5,000.00.

 Why and what could have caused the lawyer to commit the act?

He already trusted that person well enough or already knows how he make
decisions. That person had been doing that to the respondent, it was just
discovered recently because of his lapse in judgment.

 Problem areas in Legal Ethics exposed in the case

In the case at bar, respondent lawyer suffered from conflict of duties. Judge
Santos abdicated a function exclusively granted to him by no less than the
fundamental law of the land. It is axiomatic that decision-making, among other
duties, is the primordial and most important duty of a member of the bench. He
must use his own perceptiveness in understanding and analyzing the evidence
presented before him and his own discernment when determining the proper
action, resolution or decision. Delegating to a counsel of one of the parties the
preparation of a decision and parroting it verbatim reflect blatant judicial sloth.

 Has CPR fully addressed the concern’s involved?


Yes. CPR has fully addressed the case at bar.

 Lesson/s learned in the case applied in future lawyering endeavor

The responsibility that will be given to me when I will enter this legal profession in
the near future is mine alone. I must uphold the moral standard and maintain
appropriateness on my dealings with this profession. I know it will be hard specially

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when I am in a situation where choosing either one of the two choices would damned
me. But with God’s guidance and armed with the Code of Professional Responsibility
demands from me, hopefully I will persevere.

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