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The Philippine legal system is predominantly derived from Spanish and American law, and its laws are

enacted by Congress. Having been under the colonial rule of Spain and subsequently the United States, it is not surprising that the Philippines would base much of its laws and court system on the Spanish and American models. The Revised Penal Code (law which defines and punishes crimes), for example, is mostly derived from Spanish criminal law. Laws affecting commerce (such as negotiable instruments, banks, corporations and securities), on the other hand, are of American origins. In fact, the Philippine Constitution itself is modeled after the US Constitution. Despite the similarities of the Philippine legal system with Spanish and American laws, however, there are still portions of Philippine law that are endemic to the Philippines. For example, the barangay conciliation panels - through which most controversies involving residents of the same city or municipality must pass through before they are litigated in court - are uniquely Filipino. Also, unlike in the United States, there is no jury system in the Philippines. Branches of Government Understanding the government structure of the Philippines is essential in getting a clear picture of the Philippine legal system. Under the Constitution, governmental powers in the Philippines is divided among three institutions: executive, legislative and judicial. The executive branch, headed by the president, enforces the laws; the legislative branch - made up of the House of Representatives and Senate (collectively called Congress) - makes the laws; and the judicial branch (through the Supreme Court and lower courts established by Congress), also called the judiciary, interprets the laws. Primary Source of Philippine Laws Philippine laws come primarily from laws enacted by Congress. For this reason the Philippines is considered a civil law jurisdiction, as opposed to a common law jurisdiction which is primarily based on court decisions developed by judges through the years. The modern trend, however, is blurring this distinction because most common law jurisdictions - like the United States, Great

Britain and its former colonies - are starting to codify (pass as statutes through congressional acts) their laws. On the other hand, even civil law jurisdictions like the Philippines have embraced the common law practice of courts adhering to past decisions and being guided by them in deciding similar cases, which is called the doctrine of stare decisis. Laws passed by Congress are called "Republic Acts," followed by their appropriate number. During the Marcos Administration, laws were called Batas Pambansa, if passed by Congress (which was then parliamentary in form), and Presidential Decree if passed by Ferdinand E. Marcos. Marcos then exercised contemporaneous legislative powers. Also, after the late Corazon Aquino came into power and before the 1987 Constitution was adopted, she exercised sole legislative powers under her revolutionary government, and laws passed by her bear the title "Executive Order." Administrative Regulations Regulatory agencies and departments of the government under the executive branch also issue rules that have the force of law. Strictly speaking, however, these are not laws and are appropriately called implementing rules or administrative regulations because they merely implement laws enacted by Congress. These agencies or departments derive their authority through delegation of power by Congress. Court Decisions Court decisions handed down by the Supreme Court, which is the country's highest court, have the force and effect of law. Although not laws in their strict meaning as applied to the Philippines, these are laws in the sense that they say what the law is. Decisions handed down by lower courts, however, do not have this effect. A unique feature of Philippine law is the power conferred on the Supreme Court under Article VIII, Section 5(5) of theConstitution. Under this provision, the Supreme Court is granted rulemaking power in the protection and enforcement of constitutional rights, court proceedings, practice of law and legal assistance to the underprivileged. This provision empowers the Supreme Court to promulgate rules on the

enumerated areas that have the force and effect of law. International Law By express provision of Article II, Section 2 of the Philippine Constitution, the Philippines considers the generally accepted principles of international law as part of the law of the land. This is known as the incorporation clause. According to Isagani Cruz in Philippine Political Law, in case of irreconcilable conflict between Philippine law proper and international law the 2. former prevails. Local Legislations Aside from the national government which includes the three branches above-mentioned, the Philippines is divided into several political units, each being conferred with limited governmental powers. These are the provinces (made up of several cities and municipalities), cities, municipalities and the barangays. Subject to certain limitations and provided they do not contravene the Constitution and laws passed by Congress, each of these political units can enact regulations applicable within their respective territorial jurisdictions. These regulations are called "ordinances." FACTS - Max Shoop is applying for admission to practice law in the Philippines under Par. 4 of the Rules for the Examination of Candidates for Admission to the Practice of Law. It was shown in his application that he was practicing for more than 5 years in the highest court of the State of New York. - The said rule requires that: New York State by comity confers the privilege of admission without examination under similar circumstances to attorneys admitted to practice in the Philippine Islands. (Aside from comity, the satisfactory affidavits of applicants must show they have practiced at least 5 years in any (district or circuit or highest) court of the US or territory of it. But admission is still in the discretion of the court.)

- The rule of New York court, on the other hand, permits admission without examination in the discretion of the Appellate Division in several cases: 1.Provided that the applicant also practiced 5 years as a member of the bar in the highest law court in any other state or territory of the American Union or in the District of Columbia The applicant practiced 5 years in another country whose jurisprudence is based on the principles of the English Common Law (ECL). ISSUE WON under the New York rule as it exists the principle of comity is established HELD The Philippines is an UNORGANIZED TERRITORY of the US, under a civil gov't. established by the Congress. - In interpreting and applying the bulk of the written laws of this jurisdiction, and in rendering its decisions in cases NOT covered by the letter of the written law, this court relies upon the theories and precedents of Anglo-American cases, subject to the limited exception of those instances where the remnants of the Spanish written law present well-defined civil law theories and of the few cases where such precedents are inconsistent with local customs and institutions. - The jurisprudence of this jurisdiction is based upon the ECL in its present day form of AngloAmerican Common Law to an almost exclusive extent. - New York permits conferring privileges on attorneys admitted to practice in the Phils. similar to those privileges accorded by the rule of this court. - Petition granted. Decision is based on the interpretation of the NY rule; doesnt establish a precedent with respect to future applications.

Rules on Legislative Drafting Statutes and Their Construction (L Gonzaga) o Two steps involved in legislative drafting: 1.) Ethical or Formulation of Policy, and 2.) Technical or the Mechanics of Bill Drafting. 1. Formulation of Policy There are two kinds of policy: i.) basic policy, and ii.) immediate objective. Basic policy is the general or overall principle that everyone has agreed upon, while the immediate objective is more specific and targeted. Policy is determined by the judgment of legislators, with the assistance of specialists, pressure-groups, and others. 2. The Drafting of a Statute Legislative drafting involves: i.) mastery of language, and ii.) research. Drafters should also take note of: "(a) The exact state of facts in the field to which the law will relate; (b) The form of previous statutes relating to the same subject in the same jurisdictions; (c) The form of previous statutes relating to the same subject in other jurisdictions; (d) The amnner in which such statutes have actually operated; (e) The consensus of opinion among experts as to the best method for meeting the problem." The Legislative Reference Service renders technical assistance to Congress by indexing Philippine laws and drafting bills. 3. Objectives of the Draftsman Drafters should "make his readers understand what is commanded and what is forbidden by the law." They should not adopt the style of literary composition, but should be "more like that of a man who writes directions on

how to use a kodak or how to use a Burroughs Calculator. This practice will help minimize problems in interpretation. Legal Method Prof. M. S. Feliciano AY 2009-2010 5 Janz Hanna Ria A2013 But no matter how precise a statute is crafted, there will still be gaps and ambiguities because: i.) one cannot forsee all the possible consequences of the relations between language, and the persons or situations where it might apply, and ii.) courts in some cases would want to follow a certain policy direction which the statute does not cover. 4. Problems of Drafting Either related to the form and structure of the statute, or the language used. Form and Structure o Dividing statutes into sections makes them flexible and facilitates amendments. o Drafters should follow proper construction and logical development of sections and other parts of a statute. Length of Sections o There is no rule on how long or short sections may be, but it should be "made as brief as may be compatible with accuracy." Sentence Structure o A legislative declaration consists of a "legal subject" and a "legal action." o More complex provisions also have a "case" where its operation is confined, and "conditions" which trigger its operation. o The Problem of Language o Statutes should be written in "clear, simple, and concise language," but when they deal with technical matters, like laws regulating accounting practices for instance, specialized terms are unavoidable.

o Drafters should also avoid variations in expression, that "the same word should not be used in different senses," and that when one word is used, it should be used and defined uniformly throughout Statutory Construction the art or process of discovering and expounding the meaning and intention of the authors of the law with respect to its application to a given case, where that intention is rendered doubtful, among others, by reason of the fact that the given case is not explicitly provided for in the law. Justice Martin defines statutory construction as the art of seeking the intention of the legislature in enacting a statute and applying it to a given state of facts. A judicial function is required when a statute is invoked and different interpretations are in contention. Difference between judicial legislation and statutory construction: Where legislature attempts to do several things one which is invalid, it may be discarded if the remainder of the act is workable and in no way depends upon the invalid portion, but if that portion is an integral part of the act, and its excision changes the manifest intent of the act by broadening its scope to include subject matter or territory which was not included therein as enacted, such excision is judicial legislation and not statutory construction. Construction is the drawing of conclusions with respect to subjects that are beyond the direct expression of the text, while interpretation is the process of discovering the true meaning of the language used. Interpretation is limited to exploring the written text. Construction on the

other hand is the drawing of conclusions, respecting subjects that lie beyond the direct expressions of the text. PARTS OF STATUTE a. Title the heading on the preliminary part, furnishing the name by which the act is individually known. It is usually prefixed to the statute in the brief summary of its contents. b. Preamble part of statute explaining the reasons for its enactment and the objects sought to be accomplished. Usually, it starts with whereas. c. Enacting clause part of statute which declares its enactment and serves to identify it as an act of legislation proceeding from the proper legislative authority.Be enacted is the usual formula used to start this clause. d. Body the main and operative part of the statute containing its substantive and even procedural provisions. Provisos and exceptions may also be found. e. Repealing Clause - announces the prior statutes or specific provisions which have been abrogated by reason of the enactment of the new law. f. Saving Clause restriction in a repealing act, which is intended to save rights, pending proceedings, penalties, etc. from the annihilation which would result from an unrestricted repeal. g. Separability Clause provides that in the event that one or more provisions or unconstitutional, the remaining provisions shall still be in force. h. Effectivity Clause announces the effective date of the law. KINDS OF STATUTES 1.General Law affects the community at large. That which affects all people of the state or all of a particular class. 2.Special Law designed for a particular purpose, or limited in range or confined to a prescribed field of action on operation.

3.Local Law relates or operates over a particular locality instead of over the whole territory of the state. 4.Public Law a general classification of law, consisting generally of constitutional, administrative, criminal, and international law, concerned with the organization of the state, the relations between the state and the people who compose it, the responsibilities of public officers of the state, to each other, and to private persons, and the relations of state to one another. Public law may be general, local or special law. 5. Private Law defines, regulates, enforces and administers relationships among individuals, associations and corporations. 6. Remedial Statute providing means or method whereby causes of action may be affectuated, wrongs redressed and relief obtained. 7.Curative Statute a form of retrospective legislation which reaches back into the past to operate upon past events, acts or transactions in order to correct errors and irregularities and to render valid and effective many attempted acts which would otherwise be ineffective for the purpose intended. 8. Penal Statute defines criminal offenses specify corresponding fines and punishments. 9. Prospective Law applicable only to cases which shall arise after its enactment. 10. Retrospective Law looks backward or contemplates the past; one which is made to affect acts or facts occurring, or rights occurring, before it came into force. 11. Affirmative Statute directs the doing of an act, or declares what shall be done in contrast to a negative statute which is one that prohibits the things from being done, or declares what shall not be done. 12. Mandatory Statutes generic term describing statutes which require and not merely permit a course of action Purview a : the body or enacting part of a statute b : the limit, purpose, or scope of a statute