2000-2001 Labor Cases Copy

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<p>SURVEY OF 2000-2001 LABOR CASES ATENEO CENTRAL BAR OPERATIONS 2002 2001 Cases A Prime Security Services, Inc. v. NLRC G.R. 107320 January 19, 2000 FACTS: PR had been working for a year as a security guard with the Sugarland Security Services, Inc., a sister company of petitioner. He was hired on January 1, 1988 as he was among those absorbed by petitioner when it took over the security contracts of its sister company, Sugarland, with the U.S. Embassy. He was forced by petitioner to sign a new probationary contract for 6 mos; and on August 1, 1988, his employment was terminated. Labor Arbiter found for the petitioner. ISSUES: 1. Whether PRs employment with A Prime Securities was just a continuation of his employment with Sugarland. 2. Whether PR is a regular employee and thereby illegally dismissed. HELD: 1. Yes. The allegations of respondent that Sugarland and A Prime were sister companies were never denied nor controverted by petitioner before the Labor Arbiter. It belatedly contended that they were distinct juridical entities, but such fact lacks any legal basis. The Court cannot sanction the practice of companies that effects the transfer of its employees to another entity whose owners are the same, in order to deprive subject employees of the benefits he is entitled to under the law. 2. Yes. PR became a regular employee upon completion of his six-month period of probation. He started working on January 30, 1988; and the end of the period of probation was on July 27, 1988. When he was dismissed on August 1, he was already a regular employee with a security of tenure. PRs alleged violations of sleeping on post and quarrelling with a worker were first infractions and do not amount to valid grounds for terminating employment. Golden Donuts, Inc. v. NLRC G.R. Nos. 113666-68. January 19, 2000. FACTS: Private respondents were the complainants in three consolidated cases submitted with the Labor Arbiter. Complainants were members of the KMDD-CFW whose CBA with the corporation expired. During the negotiations, the management panel arrived late causing the union panel to walk out. The management addressed a letter of apology to the union and requested for negotiations to resume. The union panel did not show up despite letters from management advising the former of the CBA meetings. The union struck. A complaint was filed by Golden Donuts to declare the strike illegal. Counsel for the union and strikers pleaded for a compromise whereupon both parties would desist from continuing their cases against each other. The Labor Arbiter rendered a decision upholding the dismissal of private respondents and ruling that they were bound by the compromise agreement entered into by the union with petitioners. Private respondents appealed to the NLRC, claiming that the union had no authority to waive or compromise their individual rights and they were not bound by the compromise agreement entered into by the union with petitioners. ISSUE: Whether or not a union may compromise or waive the rights to security of tenure and money claims of its minority members, without the latters consent. HELD: No. Absent a showing of the unions special authority to compromise the individual claims of private respondents for reinstatement and backwages, there is no valid waiver of the aforesaid rights. The judgment of the Labor Arbiter based on the compromise agreement does not have the effect of res judicata upon private respondents who did not agree thereto since the requirement of identity of parties is not satisfied. A judgment upon a compromise agreement has all the force and effect of any other judgment and is conclusive only upon parties thereto and their privies. Private respondents have not waived their right to security of tenure nor can they be barred from entitlement of their individual claims. Since there was no evidence that private respondents committed any illegal act, petitioners failure to reinstate them after the settlement of the strike amounts to illegal dismissal.</p> <p>1</p> <p>SURVEY OF 2000-2001 LABOR CASES ATENEO CENTRAL BAR OPERATIONS 2002 Alemars Sibal &amp; Sons, Inc. v. NLRC G.R. No. 114761. January 19, 2000. FACTS: Private Respondent NLM Katipunan filed with the DOLE a notice of strike raising charges of ULP and illegal dismissal against petitioner. The charges were elevated to NLRC for compulsory arbitration. The Labor Arbiter ordered petitioner to pay private respondent separation pay of month pay for every year of service. Private respondent filed a motion for execution of the decision of the Labor Arbiter. The Rehabilitation Receiver of petitioner submitted a Manifestation with Motion, alleging that petitioner was not yet in a position to comply with the directive of the Labor Arbiter as it was still under Rehabilitation Receivership by virtue of the order of the SEC. The Labor Arbiter granted the motion for execution. Petitioner contends that public respondent should have denied the order of the LA for the immediate payment of separation pay because of the order of the SEC suspending all claims against petitioner pending before any court, tribunal or body. However, the NLRC emphasized that the order of execution made by the LA had reached finality and that petitioners succeeding motions had been filed out of time. At the time this petition had been filed on May 4, 1994, petitioner had been placed under rehabilitation receivership. ISSUE: Whether or not the order of the SEC can stay the execution of judgment against petitioner. HELD: No. A stay of execution may be warranted by the fact that a petitioner corporation has been placed under rehabilitation receivership. However, the SEC issued an order approving the rehabilitation plan of petitioner and placing it under liquidation pursuant to PD 902-A. Since receivership proceedings have ceased and petitioners rehabilitation receiver and liquidator, Ledesma, Saludo and Associates has been given the imprimatur to proceed with corporate liquidation, the cited order of the SEC has been rendered functus oficio. Petitioners monetary obligation to private respondent is long overdue and thus cannot delay the satisfaction of private respondents claim. However, due to events subsequent to the filing of this petition, private respondent must present its claim with the rehabilitation receiver and liquidator in the SEC, subject to the rules on preference of credits. VH Manufacturing, Inc. v. NLRC G.R. No. 130957 January 19, 2000. FACTS: Private respondent was employed as a quality control inspector with the duty of inspecting LPB cylinders for any possible defects. He was dismissed when he was allegedly caught by petitioners company President for sleeping on the job, thereby violating Company Rule 15-b. He was asked to explain why no disciplinary action should be taken against him, to which he promptly replied. Notwithstanding his reply, he was terminated. The Labor Arbiter found for the company. The NLRC reversed the decision ordering petitioner to reinstate petitioner with full backwages. ISSUE: Whether or not private respondent was illegally dismissed. HELD: Yes. In termination disputes, the burden of proof is always on the employer to show that dismissal was for a just and valid cause. Petitioners claim that private respondent slept on the job was not substantiated by any evidence. In other cases, sleeping on the job was found as a valid ground for dismissal because such cases involved security guards whose duty necessitates that they be awake and watchful at all times. While an employer is allowed a wide discretion in the promulgation of company policies, such should always be fair and reasonable. In this case, the dismissal meted out on private respondent for sleeping on the job appears to be too harsh a penalty. Association of Trade Unions, v. Abella G.R. No. 100518 January 24, 2000.</p> <p>2</p> <p>SURVEY OF 2000-2001 LABOR CASES ATENEO CENTRAL BAR OPERATIONS 2002 FACTS: Respondent company is a domestic corporation engaged in road construction projects of the government. It engaged the services of certain workers to work on various projects on different dates. The workers joined petitioner union as members. Petitioner union filed a motion for certification election with the regional office. Respondent company opposed stating that the workers were project employees and not qualified to form part of the rank and file collective bargaining unit. The Med-Arbiter dismissed the PCE. On appeal, the Secretary of Labor reversed the Med-Arbiters decision and ordered the immediate holding of a certification election. Later, respondent company terminated the employment of the workers due to the completion of its projects or the expiration of workers contracts. The affected workers claimed they were dismissed because of their union activities; and thus staged a strike. The strike was declared illegal and certain strikers were dismissed. The NLRC modified the decision by awarding monetary benefits to qualified workers. Complainants herein were found to be validly dismissed. ISSUE: W/N Petitioners were validly dismissed. HELD: Yes. Petitioners neither assail the jurisdiction of public respondent nor attribute any grave abuse of discretion on the part of the labor tribunal. The petition must fail for lack of substantial requirements under Rule 65. Also, as petitioners are project employees, their employment was coterminous with the completion of the project for which they had been hired. They were informed in advance that said project or undertaking for which they were hired would end on a stated or determinable date. Nueve Ecija I Electric Cooperative, Inc. (NEECO I) Employees Association, v. NLRC G.R. No. 116066 January 24, 2000. FACTS: Petitioners were permanent employees of respondent NEECO I. They were members of the NEECO I Employees Association. The Board of Directors adopted Policy No. 3-33, which set the guidelines for NEECO Is retirement benefits. All regular employees were ordered to accomplish Form 87, which were applications for either reinstatement, resignation, or separation from service. Also, certain union officers were promoted to supervisory rank. These events caused apprehension in the labor organization and deemed as harassment threatening union members and circumventing employees security of tenure. The union held a snap election of officers. Petitioner union passed a resolution withdrawing the applications for retirement of all its members. Petitioners Marin, Fajardo and Carillo were compulsary retired and received their separation pay under protest. Javate was terminated for allegedly misappropriating funds and dishonesty. Petitioners and Javate filed a complaint for illegal dismissal. The Labor Arbiter rendered a decision on December 21, 1992 declaring NEECO I guilty of illegal dismissal. Private respondents elevated the case to the NLRC. They filed their appeal on December 28 and posted a surety bond on January 5, 1993. Petitioners were reinstated by NEECO I pending appeal. Javate withdrew his complaint and opted to receive his retirement benefits. ISSUE: 1. Whether or Not the appeal was perfected within the 10 day reglementary period. 2. Whether or not NLRC should have deleted en toto moral and exemplary damages. HELD: 1. Yes. Petitioners contend that the appeal should have been completed with the filing of the supersedeas bond by January 4, 1993. However, in a number of cases, the Court has relaxed the rule to resolve controversies on the merits when there are special circumstances, such as when there was a substantial compliance with the rule, so that on balance, technical considerations could give way to equity and justice. Private respondent filed their appeal within the reglementary period. The bonding company issued the bond on January 4, but it was forwarded to the NLRC only on the following day, January 5. Since it was the holiday season, the Court found it equitable to ease the rules and consider there was substantial compliance. Although as to the amount of the bond, respondent in its resolution of November 7, 1991deleted the phrase exclusive of moral and exemplary damages as well as attorneys fees in determining the amount of the bond, it provided a safeguard against the imposition of excessive bonds as the Commission was given the</p> <p>3</p> <p>SURVEY OF 2000-2001 LABOR CASES ATENEO CENTRAL BAR OPERATIONS 2002 power to reduce the amount of the bond in meritorious cases and upon motion of the appellant. 2. No. To warrant an award of moral damages, it must be shown that the dismissal of the employee was attended to by bad faith, or constituted an act oppressive to labor, or was done in a manner contrary to morals, good customs or public policy. As there was ULP, it was proper to impose moral and exemplary damages; however the damages awarded by the labor arbiter were excessive. Permex Inc. vs. National Labor Relations Commission 323 SCRA 121 January 24, 2000 FACTS: Emmanuel Filoteo, an employee of Permex, was dismissed by the latter for allegedly falsifying his daily time record. The case arose from the company-tolerated practice of employees indicating on their time records the time they left work at the same time as when they logged in for work. The company tolerated this because by the time the workers' shifts ended, they were usually tired and in a hurry to go home; hence, the practice saved them the trouble of queuing and logging out. On a particular day, Filoteo did this, but left early, upon permission granted by management, since there was no work to be done for that day. He was subsequently dismissed from his employment. He then filed an illegal dismissal case against Permex. ISSUE: Was Filoteo illegally dismissed? HELD: Yes. Given that management knew of and tolerated the practice of logging out in advance, it cannot hold the same against Filoteo. The rule is that where a violation of company policy or breach of company rules and regulations was found to have been tolerated by management, then such violation cannot serve as the basis for termination. Aklan Electric Cooperative Incorporated (AKELCO) v. NLRC G.R. 121439 January 25, 2000. FACTS: On January 22, the Board of AKELCO allowed the temporary transfer holding of office at Kalibo, Aklan. Nevertheless, majority of the employees continued to work at Lezo Aklan and were paid of their salaries. An unnumbered resolution was passed by AKELCO withdrawing the temporary designation of office at Kalibo, Aklan and that daily operation be held again at the main office of Lezo, Aklan. From June 1992 to March 1993, complainants who reported at Lezo were not paid their salaries. From March up to the present, complainants were allowed to draw their salareis, with the exception of a few who were not paid their salaries for April and May 1993. The respondents allege that the complainants voluntarily abandoned their work assignments and that they defied the lawful orders by the General manager and thus the Board of Directors passed...</p>