Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Happy Holidays?

R.A. 9492 makes the dates of some holidays movable, "Provided, That for movable holidays, the President shall issue a proclamation... the specific date that shall be declared as a nonworking day."

In relation to this, GMA issued Proclamation no. 1463.

Said Proclamation decrees (among others) that Labor Day will be celebrated tomorrow, May 1, which is a Thursday. In contrast, Independence Day, historically set on June 12, will be celebrated on June 9 (Monday). Also, December 26 and 29 are declared Special (non-working) days.

My first concern is that why is Labor Day going to be celebrated on May 1, its original date, while Independence Day won't be? I mean, isn't moving Labor Day on a Friday more logical? Labor Day is, after all, for the benefit of the laborers. So why not give them a long weekend?

My second concern is about the criteria of GMA in moving (or in not moving) the dates of the holidays. Why was the Labor Day celebration last year moved, while this year it won't be? Is it about holiday economics? Political survival? Is it just an oversight? What?

My third concern is about the December 26 and 29 as special days. What does Special (non-working) day mean anyway? Are the dates going to be special holidays? What will employees get if they suffer to work on the said dates? Is GMA allowed to declare that a particular date be a special holiday?

Ano Raw?

This is taken from the film Animal Crackers (1930). It really cracked me up when I read this. There are lawyers I know who write like this.

Honorable Charles H. Hungadunga
c/o Hungadunga, Hungadunga, Hungadunga, Hungadunga, & McCormack,


In re yours of the 5th inst., yours to hand and beg to rep., brackets, that we have gone over the ground carefully and we seem to believe, i.e., to wit., e.g., in lieu, that despite all our precautionary measures which have been involved, we seem to believe that it is hardly necessary for us to proceed unless we receive an ipso facto that is not neglible at this moment, quotes, unquotes, and quotes.

Hoping this finds you, I beg to remain, as of June 9, cordially yours,


Letter to his lawyer, dictated by Captain Spaulding
to his secretary Horatio Jamison

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Allowed Cuts

There's this anecdote about a professor from way back. It is said that the professor excused an absence only if the student personally presented one of two documents:
(1) the student's death certificate, which is self-explanatory; or
(2) the student's marriage certificate - because it is as good as the first.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Yosi Break Gone Bad

He probably took a cigarette break to relieve the tension after a long night (as most smoking law students can relate to). But I think this particular yosi break only brought him more stress.

He took the elevator to go down the building, took his cig break and once again took the elevator to go up. Just before reaching his floor, the elevator got jammed.

No one knew that he was stuck in the elevator until after 41 hours.

Here's a video clip showing how he whiled away his time in the elevator:

Click here for the complete story of the longest yosi break ever.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Understanding Corporate Hierarchy

Sole proprietorships, I understand (1 person only. How hard can it be?). Partnerships, I understand (Business/Professional venture. Involves 2 or more persons. Duh!). Corporations, I could never understand. That is, until I read Citibank v. Chua. Very simply, Justice Kapunan delineates the powers and roles of the three major corporate actors, thus:

In the corporate hierarchy, there are three levels of control: (1) the board of directors, which is responsible for corporate policies and the general management of the business affairs of the corporation; (2) the officers, who in theory execute the policies laid down by the board, but in practice often have wide latitude in determining the course of business operations; and (3) the stockholders who have the residual power over fundamental corporate changes, like amendments of the articles of incorporation.

In other words: the board decides on what the corporate policies should be; the officers implement them; and the stockholders own the corporation (and as owners, they get to choose the board members). Ok, got that. Seems simple enough. Just don't ask me to differentiate between a CEO, President, and Chairman of the Board. My understanding has not gone that far.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Word of the Week: Champerty

I first encountered this word during my first year in law school. It came out in the finals exam in Legal Profession. I didn't encounter the word before then, I haven't encountered the word again after that. But it always seems to pop in my mind, like LSS. What's irritating is that I do not know its definition (also like LSS, when you don't know the lyrics). So I looked it up, for my own peace of mind.

This funny sounding word is defined as an unethical agreement between an attorney and client that the attorney would sue and pay the costs of the client's suit in return for a portion of the damages awarded.

Trivia: in the history of Philippine jurisprudence (according to me), the term champerty has been used only once, in Hernandez v. Villanueva (way back in 1920).

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Justice Dante Tinga Decisions

Here is a list of some of Justice Tinga's ponencias from June 2003 to June 2006. The list is not complete, but I hope it can still help.

Criminal Law
People v. Pabillo /GR 122103 /November 4, 2003
People v. Escalante /GR 151111-112 /December 1, 2003
People v. De La Torre /GR 121213 /January 13, 2004
People v. Factao /GR 125966 /January 13, 2004
People v. Santos /GR 127492 /January 16, 2004
Nuñez v. People /GR 127962 /April 14, 2004
People v. Almendral /GR 126025 /July 6, 2004
People v. Minon /GR 148397-400 /July 7, 2004
Vicky Ty v. People /GR 149275 /September 27, 2004
Cabrera v. Marcelo /GR 157419 /December 13, 2004
Soplente v. People /GR 152715 /July 29, 2005
Brillante v. CA /GR 118757/121571 /November 11, 2005
Rabanal v. People /GR 160858 Feb 28, 2006
Zarraga v. People /GR 162064 /March 14, 2006

Political Law
People v. Tudtud /GR 144037 /September 26, 2003
Anwar v. COMELEC /GR 153991-92 /October 16, 2003
Prividec v. Capitol Steel Corp /GR 155692 /October 23,2003
Matugas v. COMELEC /GR 151944 /January 20, 2004
Sanlakas v. Reyes /GR 159085 /February 2, 2004
LDP v. COMELEC /GR 161265 /February 24, 2004
Salic v. COMELEC /GR 157007 /March 17, 2004
Dimaporo v. House of Reps /GR 158359 /March 23, 2004
Pamatong v. COMELEC /GR 161872 /April 13, 2004
Idulza v. COMELEC /GR 160130 /April 14, 2004
AKLAT v. COMELEC /GR 162203 /April 14, 2004
Quizon v. CA /GR 127819 /April 27, 2004
Freedom from Debt Coalition /GR 161113 /June 15, 2004
CSC v. Asensi /GR 160657 /June 30, 2004
Southern Cross v. Phil Cement /GR 158450 /July 8, 2004
Globe Telecom v. NTC /GR 143964 /July 26, 2004
Velasquez v. Hernandez /GR 150732 /August 31, 2004
Kapisanan ng mga Manggagawa sa GSIS v. COA /GR 150769 /August 31, 2004
National Liga ng mga Brgy v. Paredes /GR 130775 /September 27, 2004
Brillante v. CA /GR 118757 /October 19, 2004
PICOP v. Calo /GR 161798 /October 20, 2004
Disomangcop v. Datumanong /GR 149848 /November 25, 2004
CSC v. Asensi /GR 160657 /December 17, 2004
Sultan Camid v. Office of the President /GR 161414 /January 17, 2005
Tan v. Pereña /GR 149743 /February 18, 2005
Balajonda v. COMELEC /GR 166032 /February 28, 2005
Quiambao v. CA /GR 128305 /March 28, 2005
City of Manila v. Laguio /GR 118127 /April 12, 2005
DARAB v. Lubrica /GR 159145 /April 19, 2005
De Jesus v. COA /GR 127515 /May 10, 2005
Land Bank v. Natividad /GR 127198 /May 16, 2005
Davao New Town v. COSLAP /GR 141523 /June 8, 2005
Carlos F. Garcia v. Sandiganbayan /GR 165835 /June 22, 2005
Southern Cross v. Cement Manufacturers /GR 158540 /August 3, 2005
Spouses Ong v. Sandiganbayan /GR 126858 /September 16, 2005
Hospicio de San Jose v. /GR 140847 /September 23, 2005
Reyes v. Atienza /GR 143374 /September 23, 2005
Guingguing v. CA /GR 128959 /September 30, 2005
Atitiw v. Zamora /GR 143374 /September 30, 2005
Sps. Constantino v. Cuisia /GR 106064 /October 13, 2005
Danan v. CA /GR 132759/132866 /October 25, 2005
PPA v. Pier 8 Arrastre /GR 147861/155252 /November 18, 2005
Tanchanco v. Sandiganbayan /GR 141675 – 96 /November 25, 2005
Antonio v. Geronimo /GR 124779 /November 29, 2005
Federated Realty Corp v. CA /GR 127967 /December 14, 2005
Republic v. Gingoyon /GR 166429 /December 19, 2005
Ingles v. Cantos /GR 125202 /January 31, 2006
Republic v. Gingoyon /GR 166429 /February 1, 2006
Nasecore v. ERC /GR 163935 /February 2, 2006
Santos Development Corporation v. Secretary /GR 159654 /February 28, 2006
MIAA v. Rodriguez /GR 161836 /February 28, 2006
CHED v. Mercado /GR 157877 /March 10, 2006
Senate v. Ermita /GR 169777 /July 14, 2006

Commisioner of Customs v. Phil Phosphate /GR 144440 /September 1, 2004 Paseo Realty v. CA /GR 119286 /October 13, 2004
CDCP Mining v. CIR /GR 122213 /July 28, 2005
City of Davao v. RTC /GR 127383 /August 18, 2005
Yamane v. BA Lepanto /GR 154993 /October 25, 2005
CIR v Benguet /GR 134587 /July 8 2005
FEBTC v. CIR /GR 138919 /May 2, 2006
CIR v. BPI /GR 147375 /June 26, 2006

Commercial Law
Filipinas Textile Mills v. CA /GR 119800 /November 12, 2003
Pastor v. PNB /GR 141316 /November 20, 2003
Reyes v. Rural Bank of San Miguel /GR154499 /February 27, 2004
Samsung Construction v. FEBTC /GR 129015 /August 13, 2004
Transfield v. Luzon Hydro /GR 146717 /November 22, 2004
Lanuza v. CA /GR 131394 /March 28, 2005
PNB v. Sanao Mktg /GR 153951 /July29, 2005
Poliand Industrial v. NDC /GR 143866 /August 22, 2005
Prudential Bank v. Lim /GR 136371 /November 11, 2005

Labor Law
People v. Crispin Villaber /GR 114967 /January 26, 2004
People v. Gutierrez /GR 124439 /February 5, 2004
People v. Dujua /GR 199014-16 /February 5, 2004
Procter and Gamble v. Bondesto /GR 139847 /March 5, 2004
Gallera de Guison Hermanos v. Cruz /GR 159390 /June 10, 2004
Lazaro v. Social Security Comm /GR 138254 /July 30, 2004
Duncan v. Glaxo /GR 162994 /September 17, 2004
Maquiling v. Philippine Tuberculosis Soc /GR 143384 /February 4, 2005
Escareal v. PAL /GR 151922 /April 7, 2005
FF Marine Corp v. NLRC /GR 152039 /April 8, 2005
Benares v. Pancho /GR 155207 /April 29, 2005
Borja Estate v. Sps Basilio /GR 152550 /June 8, 2005
Computer Innovations Center v. NLRC /GR 152410 /June 29, 2005
Sameer Overseas Placement v. Levantino /GR 153942 /June 29, 2005
Lopez v. MWSS /GR 154472 /June 30, 2005
JPL Mktg v. CA /GR 151966 /July 8, 2005
Metromedia Times v. Pastorin /GR 154294 /July 29, 2005
SMC (MPPP) v. MPPP-SMAMRFU-FFW /GR 152956 /August 16, 2005
Oriental Petroleum v. Fuentes /GR 151818 /October 14, 2005
Cadiz v. CA /GR 153784 /October 25, 2005
MBTC v. Barrientos /GR 157028 /January 31, 2006
Maricalum Mining Corp v. Decorion /GR 158634 /April 12, 2006
Cainta Catholic School v. CCSEU /GR 151021 /May 4, 2006
Petition for the cancellation of the union reg. of HPFLHA v. BLR
/GR 155395 /June 22, 2006
Velasco v. NLRC /GR 161694 /June 26, 2006

Civil Law
Naguiat v. CA /GR 118375 /October 3, 2003
Valencia v. Locquiao /GR 122134 /October 3, 2003
Heirs of Franco v. CA /GR 123924 /December 11, 2003
Rioferio v. CA /GR 129008 /January 13, 2004
Anama v. CA /GR 128609 /January 29, 2004
Cayana v. CA /GR 125607 /March 18, 2004
DBP v. West Ne/GRos /GR 152359 /May 21, 2004
Philcomsat v. Globe /GR 147234 /May 25, 2004
Espinosa v. CA /GR 128686 /May 28, 2004
Milwaukee Industries v. Pampang III Electric /GR 152569 /May 31, 2004
Spouses de Robles v. CA /GR 128053 /June 10, 2004
Towne and City Dev. Corp v. CA /GR 135043 /July 14, 2004
Sumipat v. Banga /GR 155810 /August 13, 2004
Hi Tone Mktg v. Baikal Realty /GR 149992 /August 20, 2004
Heirs of Barredo v. Sps. Asis /August 27, 2004
Carpio v. Valmonte /GR 151866 /September 9, 2004
Abalos v. Macatangay /GR 155043 /September 30, 2004
Chua v. CA /GR 125837 /October 6, 2004
Gabriel v. CA /GR 128474 /October 6. 2004
Swedish Match v. CA /GR 128120 /October 20, 2004
Añonuevo v. CA /GR 130003 /October 20, 2004
Sps. Vazquez v. Ayala /GR 149734 /November 19, 2004
Encinas v. National Bookstore /GR 162704 /November 19, 2004
Manila Memorial v. Linsangan /GR 151319 /November 22, 2004
NPC v. Alonzo-Legasto /GR 148318 /November 22, 2004
Lim v. Saban /GR 163720 /December 16, 2004
Consolidated Rural Bank v. CA /GR 132161 /January 17, 2005
Republic v. CA /GR 144057 /January 17, 2005
YHT Realty v. CA /GR 126780 /February 17, 2005
Palanca v. Guides /GR 146365 /February 28, 2005
Gonzales v. Climax Mining /GR 161957 /February 28, 2005
JLT A/GRo Inc v. Balansag /GR 141882 /March 11, 2005
Homeowners Savings v. Dailo /GR 153802 /March 11, 2005
Sps. Lim v. Chuatoco /GR 161861 /March 11, 2005
Resuena v. CA /GR 128338 /March 28, 2005
Adoracion Cruz v. CA /GR 122904 /April 15, 2005
Heirs of Manlapat v. CA /GR 125585 /June 8, 2005
Sps. Torcuator v. Bernabe /GR 134219 /June 8, 2005
Prudential Bank v. Alviar /GR 150197 /July 28. 2005
Heirs of Juan Panganiban v. Dayrit /GR 151205 /July 28, 2005
David v. Cordova /GR 152992 /July 28, 2005
Sps. Santos v. Pizardo /GR 151452 /July 29, 2005
Mongao v. Pryce Prop /GR 156474 /August 16, 2005
Cabello v. Republic /GR 142810 /August 18, 2005
JN Dev’t Corp v. Phil Export /GR 151060 /August 31, 2005
Sps. Edrada v. Sps. Ramos /GR 154413 /August 31, 2005
Carlos v. Sandoval /GR 135830 /September 30, 2005
Sps. Carpo v. Chua /GR 150773 /September 30, 2005
Ilao-Quianay v. Mapile /GR 154807 /October 25, 2005
Trade and Investment Dev’t Corp v. Roblett /GR 139290 /November 11, 2005
Deloso v. Sps. Alonso /GR 144244 /November 11, 2005
Fabrigas v. San Francisco Del Monte /GR 152346 /November 25, 2005
Spouses Paray v. Rodriguez /GR 132287 /January 24, 2006
PCIB v. CA /GR 121989 /January 31, 2006
Gammon Phil v. MRTDC /GR 144792 /January 31, 2006
Francisco v. Roque /GR 151338 /January 31, 2006
Pan Pacific v. CA /GR 125283 /February 10, 2006
Cajayon v. Santiago /GR 149118 /February 16, 2006
Abrajano v. Heirs of Salas /GR 158895 /February 16, 2006
Mangubat v. Lamino AM P-06-2115 /February 23, 2006
Antonio v. Reyes /GR 155800 /March 10, 2006
Delfin v. Billones /GR 146550 /March 17, 2006
Korea Exchange Bank v. Gonzales /GR 139460 /March 31, 2006
Azuela v. CA /GR 122880 /April 12, 2006
Duran v. CA /GR 125256/126973 /May 2, 2006
Salonga, Hernandez and Allado v. Pascual /GR 127165 /May 2, 2006
Phil Agila Satellite Inc. v. Lychauco /GR 142362 /May 3, 2006
Balayan v. Acorda /GR 153537 /May 5, 2006
Trade and Investment Dev Corp v. Roblett /GR 139240 /May 19, 2006
Roliand Industrial v. NDC /GR 143866 /May 19, 2006
Heirs of Remelion v. Villaruel /GR 132357 /May 31, 2006
Alimbobuyoy v. CA /GR 163655 /June 16, 2006
De Jesus v. CA /GR 127857 /June 20, 2006
Suarez v. Villarama /GR 124512 /June 27, 2006
Banaga v. Majaducon /GR 149051 /June 30, 2006

Monday, April 21, 2008

NBA Playoffs!

The NBA playoffs has officially started. Three (or maybe 4) teams will duke it out for the Eastern Conference Championship, while the West will be as wild as ever. The West is packed with so many great teams that anyone can win - from the first seed to the last.

For NBA fans, the playoffs will be a boon - two months of great basketball and exciting games.

For NBA fans who are going to take the bar this year, the playoffs will be a bane. The best basketball show on earth, right smack in the review period.

I remember one friend who took the bar last year. He's a big sports fan. A HUGE NBA fan. He had to make a review schedule in such a way that his study break would coincide with the game of the day. That is a pretty long break - two to three hours. He felt sorry that he had to take that long a break. But watching basketball was an itch that he had to scratch, lest he go out of his mind. The real agony came whenever there was a double header. He had to muster all his will power to pluck himself out of the sofa after the first game, with a heavy heart at that. Come Finals time, he just wished so badly that the Spurs sweep the Cavaliers - the sooner the NBA season ended, the sooner he could go on with his studies without distraction.

He got his wish. The Spurs swept the Cavs. And he passed the bar.

All's well that ends well.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Pinoy Patch Adams

Multiple choice question:

What does the Vicente Sotto Hospital scandal tell us?

A)Doctors in the video believe in the saying, "laughter is the best medicine."

B)Filipinos are a happy people, whether at home or at work.

C)Smart people sometimes do stupid things.

D)Doctors in the video will have to pay moral and exemplary damages in favor of the patient in ten years time.

E)All of the above.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Robberies and fortuitous events

Q: Can robbery be considered a fortuitous event?

If you've studied you Oblicon well, the answer should come automatically. Otherwise, it is the type of question that will make you hesitate. It's one of those confusing questions, because a fortuitous event is usually associated with an act of God. Therefore, if a fortuitous event is an act of God, can the cause be due to a human act, like robbery for instance?

The answer of course is yes. The pertinent provision, Article 1174 of the Civil Code, provides:
Except in cases expressly specified by the law, or when it is otherwise declared by stipulation, or when the nature of the obligation requires the assumption of risk, no person shall be responsible for those events which could not be foreseen, or which, though foreseen, were inevitable.
Nowhere in Article 1174 does it say that the event must be an act of God. All it says is that the event could no be foreseen or is inevitable. In Southeastern College v. CA, The Supreme Court held that fortuitous events may be produced by two general causes: (1) by nature, such as earthquakes, storms, floods, epidemics, fires, etc. and (2) by the act of man, such as an armed invasion, attack by bandits, governmental prohibitions, robbery, etc.

In De Guzman v. CA, it was ruled that a common carrier is not responsible for goods lost as a result of a robbery which is attended by grave or irresistable threat, violence, or force.

But it must be borne in mind that the four elements of fortuitous event must concur, namely:
(a) the cause of the unforeseen and unexpected occurrence or of the failure of the debtor to comply with obligations must be independent of human will;

(b) it must be impossible to foresee the event that constitutes the caso fortuito or, if it can be foreseen, it must be impossible to avoid;

(c) the occurrence must be such as to render it impossible for the debtor to fulfill obligations in a normal manner; and

(d) the obligor must be free from any participation in the aggravation of the injury or loss.
See Sicam v. Jorge for an illustration.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Recommended reading materials for the bar

I have asked around and here are the usual materials that bar reviewees (in the past couple of years) used:

Political Law:
Bernas Primer

Criminal law:

Ortega notes
Peralta notes

Civil Law:
Sempio-Dy (Persons)
Balane (Succession)

Commercial Law:
Perez (Corpo, Transpo, Insurance & Nego)
Catindig (special laws)

Remedial Law:
San Beda Reviewer

Labor Law:
Dissini notes/UP

Co Untian

Ethics and Legal forms:
Abad (Legforms)
Ty - UP
San Beda reviewer

Random Thought: Someone is going straight to hell...

... and she's bringing the whole country down with her...

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Philippine Reports Listing

Looking for a case online but all you have is the Philippine Reports number? Fret not! I have just the answer to your problem! Listed below are the Philippine Reports volume numbers and their corresponding dates. In this way, you can narrow down your search options when you're searching through or (I don't have the dates of some volume numbers, but I will update the list as soon as I get them. Coming soon, SCRA volume numbers)

Volume No. Dates Covered

1 1901-1903
2 1903
3 1903-1904
4 1904-1905
5 1905-1906
6 1906
7 1906-1907
8 1907
9 1907-1908
10 1908
11 1908
12 1908-1909
13 1909
14 1909-1910
15 1910
16 1910
17 1910
18 1910-1911
19 1911
20 1911
21 1911-1912
22 1912
23 1912
24 1912-1913
25 1913
26 1913-1914
27 1914
28 1914
29 1914-1915
30 1915
31 1915
32 1915
33 1915-1916
34 1916
35 1916
36 1917
37 1917-1918
38 1918
39 1918-1919
40 1919-1920
41 1920-1921
42 1921-1922
43 1922
44 1922-1923
45 1923-1924
46 1924
47 1924-1925
48 1925-1926
49 1926-1927
50 1927
51 1927-1928
52 1928-1929
53 1929
54 1929-1930
55 1930-1931
56 1931-1932
57 1932-1933
58 1933
59 1933-1934
60 1934
61 1934-1935
62 1935-1936
63 1936
64 1937
65 1937-1938
66 1938
67 1938-1939
68 1939
69 1939-1940
70 1940
71 1940-1941
72 1941
73 1941-1942
74 1942-1944
75 Aug '45 - Jan '46
76 Feb '46 - July '46
77 Aug '46 - Feb '47
78 Mar '47 - Jul '47
79 Aug '47 - Jan '48
80 Jan '48 - May '48
81 May '48 - Oct '48
82 Oct '48 - Feb '49
83 Mar '49 - May '49
84 June '49 - Nov '49
85 Nov '49 - Mar '50
86 Apr '50 - Jun '50
87 Jul '50 - Dec '50
88 Jan '51 - May '51
89 May '51 - Aug '51
90 Sep '51 - Feb '52
91 Mar '52 - Aug '52
92 Sep '52 - Apr '53
93 May '53 - Oct '53
94 Nov '53 - May '54
95 May '54 - Sep '54
96 Oct '54 - Apr '55
97 May '55 - Nov '55
98 Nov '55 - Apr '56
99 May '56 - Sep '56
100 Sep '56 - Mar '57
101 Mar '57 - Aug '57
102 Sep '57 - Feb '58
103 Feb '58 - May '58
104 Jun '58 - Dec '58
105 Jan '59 - Jul '59
106 Aug '59 - Jan '60
107 Feb '60 - Apr '60
108 May '60 - Jul '60
109 Jul '60 - Oct '60
110 Nov '60 - Jan '61
111 Feb '61 - May '61
112 May '61 - Aug '61
113 Sep '61 - Dec '61
114 Jan '62 - Apr '62
115 May '62 - Jul '62
116 Aug '62 - Dec '62
117 Jan '63 - Apr '63
118 May '63 - Nov '63
119 Dec '63- Apr '64
120 May '64 - Dec '64
121 Jan '65 - June '65
122 Jul '65 - Jan '66
123 Feb '66 - June '66
124 Jul '66 - Nov '66
125 Dec '66 - Mar '67
126 Apr '67 - June '67
127 Jul '67 - Aug '67
128 Sep '67 - Oct '67
129 Nov '67 - Dec '67
130 Jan '68 - Feb '68
131 Mar '68 - Apr '68
132 May '68 - June '68
133 Jul '68 - Aug '68
134 - 146
147 June '72 - Sep '72
148 - 189
190 Jan '81 - Feb '81
191 Mar '81 - May '81
192 May '81 - June '81
193 June '81 - Aug '81
194 Aug '81 - Sep '81
195 Oct '81 - Nov '81
196 Nov '81 - Dec '81
197 Jan '82 - Feb '82
198 Mar '82 - Apr '82
199 Apr '82 - June '82
200 June '82 - Jul '82
201 Jul '82 - Aug '82
202 Sep '82
203 Oct '82 - Nov '82
204 Nov '82 - Dec '82
205 Jan '83 - Feb '83
206 Mar '83 - Apr '83
207 May '83 - June '83
208 June '83 - Jul '83

Monday, April 14, 2008

The 2008 Bar Chairman

Justice Dante Tinga is reportedly the 2008 Bar Chairman. There are some who say that Justice Tinga's reputation is the same as that of Justice Azcuna's (this will probably send jitters to the 2008 bar takers). But there are also some who say that Justice Tinga will probably be more lenient, since the bar is cyclical: if the exam is hard this year, then the exam next year will probably easier, and vice versa. These are all rumors of course. I'll post more information when I get some.

Here is Justice Tinga's profile:

Justice Dante O. Tinga was appointed to the Supreme Court on July 4, 2003. Before his appointment to the High Court, he served as dean of the College of Law at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines and a managing partner at the Tinga & Corvera Law Firm. He also served as House Representative of the lone district of Taguig-Pateros for three consecutive terms from 1987 to 1998. As a Congressman, he served as House Majority Whip for Luzon from 1992 until 1998 and Speaker’s Deputy in the Committee on Rules from 1995 to 1998. He also chaired the House Committees on Energy (1992-1998) and on Corporations and Franchises (1987 to 1992). During his three-year term, he also became vice-chairman of the House Committee on Good Government and a ranking member of the House Committees on Natural Resources, Justice, Constitutional Amendments, Appropriations and Ways and Means. He was consistently chosen as an outstanding congressman by various publications and periodicals.

Justice Tinga received his Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of the East College of Law in 1960. He graduated magna cum laude. He passed the 1960 Bar Examinations with an 87.7 % rating. He obtained his Masters of Laws degree from the University of California at Berkeley, U.S.A. in 1970, graduating with High Honors and among the top five percent. He also engaged in private law practice. He was senior attorney at the Araneta, Mendoza & Papa Law Offices from 1961 to 1977 and senior partner at the Santiago, Tinga & Associates from 1978 to 1984 and also a senior partner at the Pimentel Cuenco Fuentes Tinga Law Firm from 1984 to 1986. He was also dean of the University of the East College of Law from 1988 to 1992.

Born on May 11, 1939, Justice Tinga is a recipient of several honors including the Most Distinguished Alumnus in Education in 1991 and the Most Distinguished Alumnus in the Legal Profession in 1988, both conferred by the University of the East. A resident of Taguig, Justice Tinga also served as President of the Kilusang Diwa ng Taguig (KDT). Justice Tinga is a widower (married to the late Ma. Asuncion R. Tinga) with six children.

If you have any information regarding Justice Tinga or the upcoming bar exam, please feel free to comment or to email me. Thanks!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

A Tribute to Justice Isagani Cruz

It is always a breath of fresh air whenever a professor assigns case penned by Justice Isagani A. Cruz. Needless to say, I am a fan. I still read his column in Inquirer regularly. It's too bad for all of us that he had to retire from the Supreme Court because up to this day, he still has not lost his sharp mind.

Justice Cruz makes the most interesting introductions. He will make you want to read up to the last page, not just skim through it. See for instance Amadora v. CA , which begins this way:
Like any prospective graduate, Alfredo Amadora was looking forward to the commencement exercises where he would ascend the stage and in the presence of his relatives and friends receive his high school diploma. These ceremonies were scheduled on April 16, 1972. As it turned out, though, fate would intervene and deny him that awaited experience. On April 13, 1972, while they were in the auditorium of their school, the Colegio de San Jose-Recoletos, a classmate, Pablito Damon, fired a gun that mortally hit Alfredo, ending all his expectations and his life as well. The victim was only seventeen years old.
He makes equally great endings. In the same case, the conclusion goes like this:
While we deeply sympathize with the petitioners over the loss of their son under the tragic circumstances here related, we nevertheless are unable to extend them the material relief they seek, as a balm to their grief, under the law they have invoked.
Ahh. Beautiful prose.

And here is Cruz admonishing a party for its kilometric petition:
The petition is inordinately long, consisting of 47 pages, and so is the petitioners' memorandum, which covers all of 60 pages. The reply to the private respondents' 12-page comment is all of 38 pages. The petitioners forget that they are not arguing the merits of the case but only the order granting execution pending appeal. Counsel should remember that they do a disservice to the administration of justice and contribute to its delay by imposing on the time of the courts with irrelevant discussions that only clutter the record.
Not surprisingly, the petition was denied.

In Gelos v. CA, a land reform case, Justice Cruz explains social justice with eloquence and clarity:
This Court has stressed more than once that social justice - or any justice for that matter - is for the deserving, whether he be a millionaire in his mansion or a pauper in his hovel. It is true that, in case of reasonable doubt, we are called upon to tilt the balance in favor of the poor, to whom the Constitution fittingly extends its sympathy and compassion. But never is it justified to prefer the poor simply because they are poor, or to reject the rich simply because they are rich, for justice must always be served, for poor and rich alike, according to the mandate of the law.
In Hernandez v. Commission on Audit, a case about a public employee who was robbed while in custody of government money, he starts off with:
It was one of those prosaic decisions not requiring deep thought or long deliberation. The petitioner arrived at it almost as a matter of course, applying what he believed then to be common sense. Little did he realize until later that it would cause him much anguish, even endanger his life, and ultimately lead to this litigation. But such are the quirks of fate.
In finding for the employee, he has this to say:
Hindsight is a cruel judge. It is so easy to say, after the event, that one should have done this and not that or that he should not have acted at all, or else this problem would not have arisen at all. That is all very well as long as one is examining something that has already taken place. One can hardly be wrong in such a case. But the trouble with this retrospective assessment is that it assumes for everybody an uncanny prescience that will enable him by some mysterious process to avoid the pitfalls and hazards that he is expected to have foreseen. It does not work out that way in real life. For most of us, all we can rely on is a reasoned conjecture of what might happen, based on common sense and our own experiences, or our intuition, if you will, and without any mystic ability to peer into the future. So it was with the petitioner.


It seems to us that the petitioner was moved only by the best of motives when he encashed the checks on July 1, 1983, so his co-employees in Ternate could collect their salaries and wages the following day. Significantly, although this was a non-working day, he was intending to make the trip to his office the following day for the unselfish purpose of accommodating his fellow workers. The other alternative was to encash the check is on July 5, 1983, the next working day after July 1, 1983, which would have meant a 5-day wait for the payment of the said salaries and wages. Being a modest employee himself, Hernandez must have realized the great discomfort it would cause the laborer who were dependent on their wages for their sustenance and were anxious to collect their pay as soon as possible.

For such an attitude, Hernandez should be commended rather than faulted.

Who else has the balls to write like that? Most judges and justices write their decisions with too much legalese, because it's the safer way. Because it's the only way. But Cruz showed otherwise. He has flair and wit. It is refreshing to read something like Cruz ponencias after hours and hours reading bland decisions.

So Kudos to Justice Cruz for writing out of the box. May you have more of your kind.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Surefire Formula To Do Well in the Bar Exams

Last year, I was able to obtain a copy of a Powerpoint presentation entitled "Doing Well in the 2007 Bar Examinations" by Dean Cesar L. Villanueva. For the record, I have not known anyone who has religiously followed these tips because of sheer difficulty. But It'll probably work, considering that CLV placed No. 2 in the 1981 Bar. Here are some snippets:

Nature of the Bar Exams:
They are not quizzes, personality tests, beauty pageants, tests of religion, nor tests of the highest and most difficult issues on law.

The Bar exams are eight tests on basic, fundamental
rules and principles.

Who are qualified to take practice law?
Those who can demonstrate "working knowledge" on the applicable rules and provisions in the eight chosen fields of law.

What is working knowledge of the law?
Knowledge of statutory provisions, doctrines and principles on general fields of law.


Three main difficulties in the bar exams:

  1. Too large a field to cover for each subject
  2. Too short a time to prepare
  3. Too closely spaced together are the 4 days of examinations


If you accept both intellectually, psychologically and morally that the Bar Exams are an exam on your comprehension of fundamental rules and principles, but that the fields are just too broad and expansive, then the sure and tested formula is simply this:




Five readings#@&$?!?!
Yes, five readings.
Four readings, for those who are “lazy.”


FIRST READING - Hazy recall, if any; no comprehension; like wasting too much time for so little benefit.

SECOND READING - Sparks begin to happen, light is becoming better, certain things start to become clear.
THIRD READING Certain things begin to stick, many things begin to fall in place, and even when you do not want to nor intend to, you begin to comprehend.

FOURTH READING – Against everything you expected or ever thought, ideas and concepts begin to stick life glue in your mind; definitions and enumerations just seem to fall in place.

FIFTH READING Everything you read has now become almost “absolute” in terms, as though you have photographic memory.

Today, I tell you it can be done.
The key is simply quantitative, not qualitative aspect.
Mechanically do five readings for each Law field, and the “formula will work”, whatever is your aim for the Bar Examinations.


(A) ONE BOOK FROM 7:30 TO 12:00


(C) THIRD BOOK FROM 7:00 TO 12:00


The President and the Press 2008

I stumbled upon a speech of President John F. Kennedy entitled "The President and the Press." As I was reading, I was struck with the realization that this speech could very well have been delivered today. As we all know, transparency, free speech and right to information are very hot topics right now.

The speech is quite long, but it's worth the read. Just click here for the full transcript. Better yet, just listen to it, as given by JFK himself, by clicking here. Here are parts of the speech:

This deadly challenge imposes upon our society two requirements of direct concern both to the press and to the President--two requirements that may seem almost contradictory in tone, but which must be reconciled and fulfilled if we are to meet this national peril. I refer, first, to the need for a far greater public information; and, second, to the need for far greater official secrecy.

The very word "secrecy" is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to justify it. Even today, there is little value in opposing the threat of a closed society by imitating its arbitrary restrictions. Even today, there is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it. And there is very grave danger that an announced need for increased security will be seized upon by those anxious to expand its meaning to the very limits of official censorship and concealment. That I do not intend to permit to the extent that it is in my control. And no official of my Administration, whether his rank is high or low, civilian or military, should interpret my words here tonight as an excuse to censor the news, to stifle dissent, to cover up our mistakes or to withhold from the press and the public the facts they deserve to know.

But I do ask every publisher, every editor, and every newsman in the nation to reexamine his own standards, and to recognize the nature of our country's peril. In time of war, the government and the press have customarily joined in an effort based largely on self-discipline, to prevent unauthorized disclosures to the enemy. In time of "clear and present danger," the courts have held that even the privileged rights of the First Amendment must yield to the public's need for national security.


It is the unprecedented nature of this challenge that also gives rise to your second obligation--an obligation which I share. And that is our obligation to inform and alert the American people--to make certain that they possess all the facts that they need, and understand them as well--the perils, the prospects, the purposes of our program and the choices that we face.

No President should fear public scrutiny of his program. For from that scrutiny comes understanding; and from that understanding comes support or opposition. And both are necessary. I am not asking your newspapers to support the Administration, but I am asking your help in the tremendous task of informing and alerting the American people. For I have complete confidence in the response and dedication of our citizens whenever they are fully informed.

I not only could not stifle controversy among your readers--I welcome it. This Administration intends to be candid about its errors; for as a wise man once said: "An error does not become a mistake until you refuse to correct it." We intend to accept full responsibility for our errors; and we expect you to point them out when we miss them.

Without debate, without criticism, no Administration and no country can succeed--and no republic can survive. That is why the Athenian lawmaker Solon decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy. And that is why our press was protected by the First Amendment-- the only business in America specifically protected by the Constitution- -not primarily to amuse and entertain, not to emphasize the trivial and the sentimental, not to simply "give the public what it wants"--but to inform, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and our opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices, to lead, mold, educate and sometimes even anger public opinion.

This means greater coverage and analysis of international news--for it is no longer far away and foreign but close at hand and local. It means greater attention to improved understanding of the news as well as improved transmission. And it means, finally, that government at all levels, must meet its obligation to provide you with the fullest possible information outside the narrowest limits of national security--and we intend to do it.

Friday, April 11, 2008

On Justice Arturo Brion

Justice Arturo Brion is the newest member of the Supreme Court. Being the number one placer in the 1974 Bar, no one will chide Justice Brion for being an intellectual lightweight. His expansive and impressive experience in private and public law practice, together with his good reputation, makes him more than qualified to be a member of the Court.

But right now, his term is off to a shaky start. Right after his appointment, some groups have criticized his appointment, despite his vow to become an impartial member of the court. His credibility was shaken further when he participated in the controversial Romulo Neri ruling, prompting questions about his delicadeza.

He has already lost the battle of first impressions, which may hound him for the rest of his stay in the highest court of the land. That is too bad, considering that he has the credentials and experience to make a positive impact in the Supreme Court.

But I think the people's adverse reaction to Justice Brion's appointment to the SC and his participation in the Neri Case is only normal. He was appointed on March 17. The Neri ruling came out on March 25. It is possible that he has already familiarized himself with the case in a span of 8 days, but still, it gives the impression that he was plucked from DOLE to the SC to tilt the balance in favor of Neri and the Arroyo administration. People would naturally go up in arms even if his position is firm and his arguments are sound. As the Supreme Court itself said in Rallo v. Gako, Jr.:

Well-known is the judicial norm that ‘judges should not only be impartial but should also appear impartial.’ Jurisprudence repeatedly teaches that litigants are entitled to nothing less than the cold neutrality of an impartial judge. The other elements of due process, like notice and hearing, would become meaningless if the ultimate decision is rendered by a partial or biased judge. Judges must not only render just, correct and impartial decisions, but must do so in a manner free of any suspicion as to their fairness, impartiality and integrity.

And this is where Justice Brion is found wanting.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

10 Tips in Taking the Bar

Right after the bar results came out, I chanced upon a brother who just passed the bar. He was exultant, having known just minutes before that he passed. He said that the list of the top 10 came out much earlier, and he almost cried when the list came out. If the 10th placer only got 80.90%, then the rest of the passers would be bunched from 80.89% - 75.00%. Slim chance that he will pass, he said. Luckily, the passing rate was decreased from 75 to 70. He figured that he was one of those benefitted by the decrease of the passing rate, so he was thankful. After the euphoria died down, he gave this one advice: read the codal provisions. If he had to do it all over again, he said, he would focus on the codals. With the unsolicited advice, I had the idea to ask the bar passers I know regarding their tips to the bar takers. What works? What doesn't? Here are some of the tips:

1. Three bar passers advised me to read the codals. They emphasized this because codals are usually taken for granted. One said to read the codals as your first reading. Annotations in review books will vary, But the codals will not. It is good to have a firm foundation of the codals. You can never go wrong with codals.

2. Have your schedule ready as early as now, even before you start reviewing. You may not be able to follow your schedule to the letter, but at least you have a gauge of where you are standing.

3. Even if you don't plan on studying yet, you should be choosing the books you'll be using. Obtain a copy as soon as possible, so that you can base your schedule on the number of pages of all the books and reviewers that you want to read.

4. Do not read too many books per subject. Stick to 1 or 2. The less books you read repeatedly, the better memory retention you will have. Reading three books per subject is too much. It will confuse you more.

5. Study to pass. Better yet, study to top. See the end goal in sight. The power of positive thinking helps, it will push you forward.

6. Have a break. Allot one day per week. Watch a movie. Surf the web all day. Drink. The important thing is to relax. It will keep you from being too high strung. It will help you keep your sanity.

7. Talk with your friends. Have your own support group. Unburden yourself when things become too stressful.

8. Stay healthy. Have yourself a flu shot. Do some light exercise every day. All your hard work will go for naught if you're gonna get sick on the day of the examination.

9. Adjust your sleeping habits. Try to get used to waking up at 5 or 6 in the morning, and sleeping at 10 or 11 at night. Feeling lethargic/groggy/sleepy on the day of the exam is not a good thing.

10. Pray. It will help you keep your bearings. Go to Manaoag. Go to Baclaran. Do whatever works for you.

One friend, who is ever so humble, had this to say, "huwag mo kong tanungin dyan, pare. Hindi ako authority! 1.25 readings lang ako. Hindi ko nga alam kung pa'no ko pumasa e." Well, I guess humility and a little luck helps too!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Congrats to the new Pinoy Lawyers of 2008!

Congratulations to those who just passed the bar! I have many friends who took the bar last year and I heard that the exams were relatively difficult. To all the detractors who say that this year's crop is worse than the previous years, I say, you take the bar and try to pass. These guys worked their butts off to prepare for the bar. It just so happened that the exams were harder and the examiners were more stringent in checking this year. Do not rain on their parade. Again, to all the new lawyers, cheers to you! To those who did not make it, all in God's time.

And to the 2008 bar takers, it's your time to shine!
Custom Search