Case Digest - Labor Law

Kaisahan ng mg Manggagawa sa La Compana vs. Jd. Ulpiano Sarmiento
G.R. No. L – 47853     November 16, 1984
Cuevas, J.:

              Petitioner (Kaisahan or Union) declared for a better working condition and the reinstatement of a dismissed workers. Upon refusal of the company of the company, case elevated to Labor for conciliation. The case was certified to the defunct court of Industrial Relations which issued a return-to-work order and enjoined the company from laying off as well as hiring new employees without authority from court. However, the company dismissed and hired employees without court authority. The union, through its secretary, entered into a comprise agreement with the company waiving all claims and counterclaims of whatever nature arising out of or in connection with the present case. On September 20, 1976, NLRC served a writ of Execution to enforce an order directing the reinstatement and back wages. Respondent claimed that subject case has already been dismissed by virtue of the Court’s approval of the comprise Agreement CFT issued on order retraining of the sheriff from implementing the writ of execution. Individual complainants filed a motion however denied.
              Whether or not petitioners members have the necessary legal personality to bring suit against respondents.
              Although petitioners-members are not the original parties, they should not be deprived of their right to question the order of the CFT approving the compromise agreement since they are the ones who will stand to suffer and will be greatly prejudiced by the dismissal of the case. The labor union as a body does not have a materials interest in the outcome of the case. It is the individual members who would be adversely affected in the event of the dismissal of the case after an extended litigation. The courts may set aside technicalities, all in the interest of substantial justice.
              Generally, a judgment on a compromise agreement puts an end to a litigation and is immediately executor. However, the rules require a special authority before an attorney can compromise the litigation of their clients. The authority to compromise cannot lightly be presumed and be duly established by evidence. Undoubtedly, the compromise agreement was executed to the prejudice of the complaints who never consented threto, hence it is null and void.

Mla Mandarin Employees Union vs. NLRC
G.R. 108556                November 19, 1996
              The Union filed with NLRC Arbitration Branch a complaint on wage distortions. The Labor Arbiter ruled in favor of the Union while the NLRC Commissioner Zapanata reversed the same. The Union contends that the Mandarin hotel file its appeal three days beyond the reglementary period.
              Whether or not NLRC acquired jurisdiction to take cognizance of Mandarin’s appeal from Labor Arbiter?
              The court rules that the Commission acted correctly in accepting and acting on Mandarin’s appeal. The employee who was authorized to receive payment so the respondent was allowed to pay docketing fee on the next business day which was February 4, 1991. In review of the considerations and in the interest of justice was quite served when Mandarin’s appeal was given due course despite delayed payment of fees… the reglementary period confers a directory, not a mandatory, power to dismiss an appeal…

St. Martin Funeral vs. NLRC
G.R. 130866                September 16, 1998               295 SCRA 494
Regalado, J.:
              Respondent Aricayos filed a complaint for illegal dismissal to the labor arbiter. There being no employer-employee relationship between the two, petition was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. Arcayos appealed to NLRC cotending errors of the labor arbiter.
              Whether or not the Supreme Court has jurisdiction over NLRC appeals?
              First established in 1972, decisions of NLRC were declared to be appealable to the Secretary of labor and, ultimately to the President. But under the present state law, there is no provision for appeals from NLRC decisions. The court held that there is an underlying power of the courts to scrutinize the acts of such agencies on questions of law and jurisdiction even though not right of review is given by statute, that the purpose of jurisdiction review is to keep the administrative agency within its jurisdiction and protect the substantial rights of the parties; and that is part of the checks and balances which restricts the separation of powers and forestalls arbitrary and unjust jurisdictions.
              Subsequently under RA 7902, effective March 1995, the mode for judicial review over NLRC decisions in that of a petition for Certiorari under Rule 65. The same confuses by declaring that the CA has no appellate jurisdiction over decisions falling within the appellate jurisdiction of SC, including the NLRC decisions.
              Therefore, all references in the amended Section 9 of BP 129 to supposed appeals from NLRC to SC are interpreted and hereby declared to mean and refer to petitions for certiorari under Rule 65. All such petitions should henceforth be initially filed in the doctrine on the hierarchy of courts as appropriate forum for the relief desired.
              Case remanded to CA.

Master Tours and Travel vs. CA
G.R. No. 105409                     March 1, 1993
Padilla, J.:
              On February 28, 191, summons, together with a copy of the complaint for sum of money filed by the private respondent, Cathay and an order of attachment dated February 21, 1991 were served upon and received by petitioner. Pursuant to the order the Sheriff immediately lovied upon properties of the petitioner, with value equivalent to Cathay’s claim. Master Tours moved to set aside the order because there was no prior notice on hearing before the issuance of the writ. Allegedly, respondent coerced petitioner to enter into a compromise agreement. Petitioner however, filed a motion to dismiss the petition.
              Whether or not a writ preliminary attachment issued by the trial court, ex parte prior to notice and hearing proper?
              A preliminary attachment may be defined as the provisional remedy in virtue of which a plaintiff may have the property of the adverse party taken into the custody of the court as security for the satisfaction of any judgment that may be recovered.
              It is a remedy which pirely statutory in respect of which the law requires a strict construction of the provisions granting it.
              On the issue of the permissibility of withdrawing a compromise agreement which has not been approved by court. The rule is that a judgment rendered in accordance with a compromise agreement is immediately executory unless a motion is filed to set aside the agreement on ground of fraud, mistake or duress in which case, appeal may be taken against the order denying the motion. The compromise agreement in question, is a valid document binding not only on the Executive VP, but also on the defendant corporation itself. It is not vitiated by what the EUP and the lawyer representing both call-lack of authority and threat and intimiolation that compelled them to sign it. The propriety or impropriety of withdrawing the compromise agreement is more of a question of fact than of law.

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