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COMPILATION OF LEGAL MAXIMS IN STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION

Submitted by: UY, Diane Margret V. 2013400067 Submitted to: Atty. Noelle Gavino Date: October 25, 2013
STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION 1-A

Legis interpretato legis vim obtinet - the authoritative interpretation of the Supreme Court of a statute acquires the force of law by becoming a part thereof as of the date of its enactment, since the courts interpretation merely establishes the contemporaneous legislative intent that the statute thus construed intends to effectuate. Stare decisis et non quieta novere one should follow past precedents and should not disturb what has been settled When the Supreme Court has once laid down a principle of law as applicable to a certain state of facts, it will adhere to that principle and apply it to all future cases where the facts are substantially the same. This principle assures certainty and stability in the legal system. Supreme Court rulings are binding upon inferior courts. Example Tung Chin Hui v. Rodriguez Application of Section 18, Rule 41 under the Revised Rules of Court must be maintained under the doctrine of stare decisis 48-hour period for perfecting an appeal was mandatory Issue: Whether stare decisis is applicable in the case at bar Held: No, facts should be the same. In this case, there is a crucial difference in the facts. Cited precedents have been resolved under the pre-1997 rules, while present case occurred when the 1997 rules of court was already in effect. Court cannot apply stare decisis

Lex prospicit, non respicit the law looks forward not backward. The interpretation of a statute by the SC remains to be part of the legal system until the latter overrules it and the new doctrine overruling the old is applied prospectively in favor of persons who have relied thereon in good faith. Article 4 of the Civil Code provides, laws shall have no retroactive effect unless the contrary is provided. Optimus interpres rerum usus the best interpreter of the law is usage Usage has been acquiesced in by all the parties concerned and has extended over a long period of time Contemporanea expositio est optima et fortissima in lege the contemporary construction is the strongest in law. Generally speaking, where there is doubt as to the proper interpretation of a statute, the uniform construction placed upon it by the executive or administrative officer charged with its enforcement will be adopted, if necessary to resolve the doubt. In the absence of error or abuse of power or lack of jurisdiction or grave abuse of discretion clearly conflicting with

either the letter or the spirit of the legislative enactment creating or charging a governmental agency, the action of the agency would not be disturbed by the courts. As aptly said in a case: the principle that the contemporaneous construction of a statute by the executive officers of the government, whose duty it is to execute it, is entitled to great respect, and should ordinarily control the construction of the statute by the courts, is so firmly embedded in our jurisdiction that no authorities need be cited to support it Ratihabitio mandato aequiparatur legislative ratification is equivalent to a mandate Example Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. American Express The re-enactment of a statute in RA 8424- Zero rating of services under Section 102(b) of the Tax Code substantially unchanged is persuasive indication of the adoption by the Congress of a prior executive construction. Particular provisions of the regulations are reinforced. Interest reipublicae ut sit finis litium the interest of the State demands that there be an end to litigation In order that the ruling of the Supreme Court will come to a stare decisis, it must be categorically stated on an issue expressly raised by the parties; it must be a direct ruling. If the question resolved is sub silencio (under silence), it does not constitute stare decisis. Obiter dictum an opinion expressed by a court upon some question of law which is not necessary to the decision of the case before it. Only the Supreme Court can change or abandon a precedent enunciated by it. Verba legis - Plain-meaning rule A statute is given its literal meaning and applied without attempted interpretation when it is clear, plain and free from ambiguity. As a general rule, the intent of legislature to be ascertained and thereafter given effect is the intent expressed in the language of the statute Index animi servo speech is the index of intention Verba legis non est recedendum from the words of the statute there should be no departure Judicial legislation encroachment upon legislative prerogative by the Court to define the wisdom of the law by construction because it is logical and wise Example National Federation of Labor v. NLRC Facts: Employees were claiming separation pay on the basis of Art. 283 Labor Code which states that employer MAY also terminate the employment of an employee" for reasons

therein by serving notice thereof and paying separation pay to affected employees. There was compulsory acquisition by the government of the employers land (Patalon Coconut Estate) for purposes of agrarian reform which forced the employer to cease his operation Issue: whether or not employer is liable for separation pay. Held: NO, employer is not liable for separation pay. It is a unilateral and voluntary act by the employer if he wants to give separation pay. This is gleaned from the wording MAY" in the statute MAY" denotes that it is directory in nature and generally permissive only. Plain-meaning rule is applicable. To depart from the meaning expressed by the words is to alter the statute, to legislate and not interpret Maledicta est expositio quae corrumpit textum it is dangerous construction which is against the text Legislating not interpreting departing from the meaning expressed by the words by altering the statute Absoluta sentential expositore non indigent When the language of the law is clear, no explanation of it is required When the law is clear, it is not susceptible of interpretation. It must be applied regardless who may be affected, even if it may be harsh or onerous Dura lex sed lex The law may be harsh, but it is still the law. Hoc quiedem perquam durum est, sed ita lex scripta est It is exceedingly harsh but so the law is written. The court should apply the law even if it would be harsh or unwise. The duty of court in interpreting a statute which is ambiguous is not to dispute its wisdom; the duty of the court is limited to inquiring into the legislative intent and, once this is determined, to making said intent effective. When the law is clear, appeal to justice and equity as justification to construe it differently are unavailing. Equity I described as justice outside legality, which simply means that it cannot supplant although it may supplement the law. Aequitas nunquam contravenit legis Equity never acts in contravention of the law. Verba intentioni, non e contra, debent inservire - words ought to be more subservient to the intent and not the intent to the words If there are two conflicting theories, courts choose which best accords with the spirit or intent of the law. Conscience and equity should always be considered in the construction of a statute. The spirit and intendment of the law must prevail over its letter.

Ratio legis spirit or reason of the law Do not literally construe the law if it will render it meaningless, lead to ambiguity, injustice or contradiction. The spirit of the law controls its letter Cessante ratione legis, cessat et ipsa lex - When reason of law ceases, the law itself ceases A statute may render a prior law devoid of reason. Where a later law has a purpose in conflict with that of a prior statute on the same subject, the latter has lost all meaning and function and has ceased to exist. This may happen when the purpose of the statute sought to be achieved by it is accomplished, or the mischief sought to be repressed is prevented, by an act or event independent of the statute itself. Example Commendador v. De Villa Issue: whether PD 39, which withdrew the right to peremptorily challenge members of a military tribunal, had been rendered inoperative by PD 2045 proclaiming the termination of a state of martial law Held: Yes. The termination of the martial law and the dissolution of military tribunals created thereunder, the reason for the existence of PD 39 ceased automatically and the decree itself ceased Ratio legis est anima - The reason of the law is its soul. The reason behind the law is the heart of the law. Reason of the law plays a decisive role in its construction. Example King v. Hernandez Issue: whether or not a Chinese may be employed in a non-control position in a retail establishment, a wholly nationalized business under RA 1180 Retail Trade Held: No, the law has to be construed with the Anti-Dummy Law prohibiting an alien from intervening in the management, operation, administration or control thereof. When the law says you cannot employ such alien, you cannot employ an alien. The unscrupulous alien may resort to flout the law or defeat its purpose. It is imperative that the law be interpreted in a manner that would stave off any attempt at circumvention of the legislative purpose Interpretatio talis in ambiguis semper fienda est ut evitetur inconveniens et absurdum - Where there is ambiguity, such interpretation as will avoid inconvenience and absurdity is to be adopted Where literal adherence to the language would result to absurdity, the court has the power to supply or omit the words from a statute in order to prevent an absurd result. Courts test the law by its result. There are laws which are generally valid but may seem arbitrary when applied in a particular case because of its peculiar circumstance. Courts are not bound to apply them in slavish obedience to their language. A law should not be interpreted so as not to cause injustice.

Example Salvacion v. Central Bank Facts: Greg Bartelli raped his alleged niece 10 times and detained her in his apartment for 4 days. Court gave a favourable judgment of more than 1MPhp. BSP rejected the writ of attachment alleging Sec 113 of the Central Bank Circular No. 960 (applicable to transient foreigners) Issue: Whether or not the dollar bank deposit in a Philippine bank of a foreign tourist can be attached to satisfy the moral damages awarded in favour of the latters 12-year-old rape victim BSP did not honour the writ of attachment pursuant to RA6426 Sec 8 "foreign currency deposits shall be exempt from attachment, garnishment, or any other order or process of any court, legislative body, government agency or any administrative body whatsoever" Held: The principles of right and justice are to prevail over the strict and literal words of the statute. The purpose of RA 6426 to exempt such assets from attachment: at the time the said law was enacted, the countrys economy was in a shambles. But in the present time, the country has recovered economically. Ea est accipienda interpretatio quae vitio caret - that interpretation is to be adopted which is free from evil or injustice The presumption is that the legislature in enacting a law, did not intent to work a hardship or an oppressive result, a possible abuse of authority or act of oppression, arming one person with a weapon to impose hardship on another. Example People v. Purisima It was contended that PD 9(3) is a malum prohibitum; thus intent to use such prohibited weapons is immaterial by reason of public policy. Court said that use the preamble to construe such act whether penalized or not. Moreover the court said that legislature did not intend injustice, absurdity and contradiction Jure naturae aequum est neminem cum alterius detrimento et injuria fieri locupletiorem - Any doubt in the construction of a statute should be resolved in favor of right and justice. The fact that a statute is silent, obscure or insufficient with respect to a question before the court will not justify the latter from declining to render judgment thereon. Courts invoke these principles when the statutes are silent or obscure in order to arrive at a solution that would respond to the vehement (passionate) urge of conscience. In balancing conflicting solutions, that one is perceived to tip the scales which the court believes will best promote the public welfare in its probable operation as a general rule or principle. Surplusagium non noceat - surplusage does not vitiate a statute. Utile per inutile non vitiatur - the useful is not vitiated by the non-useful

Where a word, phrase or clause in a statute is devoid of meaning in relation to the context or intent of the statute or where it suggests a meaning that nullifies the statute or renders it without sense, the word, phrase, or clause may be rejected as a surplusage and entirely ignored. Falsa demonstration non nocet, cum de corpore constat - False description does not preclude construction nor vitiate the meaning of the statute Court should not and cannot always be bound by the phraseology or literal meaning of a statute. That some words may be missing due to clerical errors or false description does not preclude construction nor vitiate the meaning of the statute which is otherwise clear. Ibi quid generaliter conceditur; inest haec exception, si non aliquid sit contras jus basque where anything is granted generally, this exception is implied; that nothing shall be contrary to law and right. Equity and other compelling reasons may justify an exception to a rule even when the rule does not provide any. If the application of law will prevent a fair and impartial inquiry into the actual facts of a case, justice demands that the general rule should yield to occasional exceptions. Summum jus, summa injuria - the rigor of the law would become the highest injustice. Where rigid and strict application of law would work injustice, an exemption there from to prevent such result on humanitarian and equitable grounds is warranted, although the literal import of the law suggests no such exemption. Nemo tenetur ad impossibile - the law obliges no one to perform an impossibility Impossibilium nulla obligation est - there is no obligation to do an impossible thing Statutes should not be construed as to require compliance with what it prescribes, which is impossible; but in such a way that substantial compliance with what the law requires is sufficient. Ex necessitate legis - from the necessity of the law What is thought, at the time of enactment, to be an all-embracing legislation may be inadequate to provide for future events, thereby creating gaps in the law. One of the rules of statutory construction used to fill in the gap is the doctrine of necessary implication. Doctrine states that what is implied in a statute is as much a part thereof as that which is expressed. Every statute is understood by implication to contain all such provisions that are needed to effectuate its purpose.

In eo quod plus sit, semper inest et minus - every statutory grant of power, right or privilege is deemed to include all incidental power, right or privilege. Necessary implication is one which under the circumstances, is compelled by a reasonable view of the statute, and the contrary of which would be improbable and absurd. Necessity defines what may properly and logically be inferred from and read into the statute. This doctrine may not be used to justify the inclusion in a statute of what to the court appears to be wise and just, unless it is at the same time necessarily and logically within its terms. What may be necessarily implied from a statute should, in any event, be consistent with, and not contrary to, the constitution or to existing laws. An implication which is violative of the law is unjustified or unwarranted. Example Chua v. Civil Service Commission Issue: whether a coterminous employee, or one whose appointment is co-existent with the duration of a government project, who has been employed as such for more than 2 years, is entitled to early retirement benefits under Sec 2 RA 6683 Held: Court held that Chua is entitled. A coterminous employee is no different from a casual or temporary employee, and by necessary implication, the inclusion of the latter in the class of government employees entitled to the benefits of the law necessarily implies that the former should also be entitled to such benefits.

Ubi jus, ibi remedium - Where there is a right, there is a remedy The fact that the statute is silent as to the remedy does not preclude him from vindicating his right, for such remedy is implied from such right. Such right enforces itself by its own inherent potency and puissance, and from which all legislation must take their bearings. Ex dolo malo non oritur - no man can be allowed to found a claim upon his own wrongdoing or inequity Nullus commodum capere potest de injuria sua propria - no man should be allowed to take advantage of his own wrong. In pari delicto potior est condition defendentis - where a statute prohibits the doing of an act, the act done in violation thereof is by implication null and void Public policy requires that parties to an act prohibited by statute be left where they are, to make the statute effective and to accomplish its object. Party to an illegal contract cannot come to court of law and ask that his illegal object be carried out. A citizen who sold his land to an alien in violation of the constitutional restriction cannot annul the same and recover the land, for both seller and buyer are guilty of having violated the Constitution Quando aliquid prohibetur ex directo, prohibeturet per obliquum - what the law prohibits cannot, in some other way, be legally accomplished

Generalia verba sunt generaliter intelligenda What is generally spoken shall be generally understood or general words shall be understood in a general sense Generale dictum generaliter est interpretandum A general statement is understood in a general sense Where a word used in a statute has both a restricted and general meaning, the general must prevail over the restricted unless the nature of the subject matter or the context in which it is employed clearly indicates that the limited sense is intended. Example: Foreigner in the Election Code prohibiting any foreigner from contributing campaign funds includes a juridical person. Person comprehends private juridical corporation, unless it appears that it is used in a more limited sense Judge construed in its generic sense to comprehend all kinds of judges Verba accipienda sunt secundum materiam A word is to be understood in the context in which it is used. The context in which the word is used oftentimes determines its meaning. The context may likewise give a broad sense to a word of otherwise ordinarily limited meaning. It may also limit the meaning of what otherwise is a word or broad signification. Ubi lex non distinguit, nec nos distinguere debemus Where the law does not distinguish, the court should not distinguish. General words and phrases in a statute should ordinarily be accorded their natural and general significance. The rule requires that a general term or phrase should not be reduced into parts and one part distinguished from the other so as to justify its exclusion from the operation of the law. Courts are not authorized to distinguish where the law makes no distinction. They should administer the law not as they think It ought to be but as they find it and without regard to consequences. Where the legislature has clearly laid down a rule for one class of cases it is not readily to be supposed that, in the same act, a different rule has been prescribed for another class of cases within the same as the first. Example: Guerrero vs. COMELEC In construing the word qualification mentioned in Art. VI., Sec. 17 of the Constitution.

Petitioner contends that the jurisdiction of HRET as defined in Art. VI., Sec. 17 of the Constitution is limited only to the qualifications prescribed under Art. VI. He claims that any issue which does not involve these constitutional qualifications is beyond the realm of the HRET. Ruling: Where the law does not distinguish, the courts should not distinguish. There should be no distinction in the application of a law where none is indicated. FIRST: The drafters of the Constitution, in making no qualification in the use of a general word or expression, must have intended no distinction at all. SECOND: Courts could only distinguish where there are facts or circumstances showing that the lawgiver intended a distinction or qualification.

Noscitur a sociis - It is known from its associates Where a particular word or phrase is ambiguous in itself or equally susceptible of various meanings, its correct construction may be made clear and specific by considering the company of words in which it is found or with which it is associated. To remove doubt, refer to the meaning of associated or companion words. Most of the words in a statute are used in their generic and ordinary sense; the rest of the words should similarly construed. Example: Carandang v. Santiago Statute: Art. 33 of Civil Code in case of defamation, fraud, & physical injuries, a civil action for damages entirely separate and distinct from the criminal action, may be brought by the injured party. Such civil action shall proceed independently of the criminal prosecution, and shall require only preponderance of evidence. Respondent claimed that term physical injuries does not include frustrated homicide because term refers to specific crime of physical injuries as defined in RPC and should be understood in its technical sense not in its generic sense of bodily injury. Issue: Whether an offended party can file a separate and independent civil action for damages arising from physical injuries during pendency of criminal action for frustrated homicide. Held: Physical injuries not as one defined in RPC, but to mean bodily harm or injury such as physical injuries, frustrate homicide, or even death (words associated with it are generic terms) Article uses words defamation, fraud and physical injuries defamation & fraud are used in their ordinary/generic sense because there are no specific provisions in the RPC using these terms as offenses defined therein

Ejusdem generis - Of the same kind/class or species Where a general word or phrase follows an enumeration of particular and specific words of the same class or where the latter follow the former, the general word or phrase is to be construed to include, or to be restricted to, persons, things or cases akin to, resembling, or of the same kind or class as those specifically mentioned. Its purpose is to give effect to both particular or general words, by treating the particular words as indicating the class and the general words as indicating all that is embraced in said class, although not specifically named by the particular words. It is based on proposition that had the legislature intended the general words to be used in their generic and unrestricted sense, it would have not enumerated the specific words. Example Cu Unjieng Sons, Inc. v. Board of Tax Appeals Statute: In the case of a corporation, all losses actually sustained and not charged off within the taxable year and not compensated for by insurance or otherwise. Issue: Whether losses due to the war were to be deductible from gross income of 1945 when they were sustained, or in 1950 when Philippine War Damage Commission advised that no payment would be made for said losses. Claims: The assurances of responsible public officials before the end of 1945 that property owners would be compensated for their losses as a result of the war sufficed to place the losses within the phrase compensated xxx otherwise than by insurance. Held: Court rejected the claim. Otherwise in the clause compensated for by insurance or otherwise refers to compensation due under a title analogous or similar to insurance. In order to be deemed compensated for by insurance or otherwise, the losses sustained by a taxpayer must be covered by a judicially enforceable right, springing from any of the juridical sources of obligations, namely, law, contract, quasi-contract, torts, or crimes, and not mere pronouncement of public officials.

Expressio unius est exclusio alterius - Express mention of one person, thing or consequence implies the exclusion of all others. The rule and its variations are generally used in the construction of statutes granting powers, creating rights and remedies, restricting common rights, and imposing penalties and forfeitures, as well as those statutes which are strictly construed. Where a statute directs the performance of certain acts by a particular person or class or persons, it implies that it shall not be done otherwise or be a different person or class of persons. If a statute

enumerates the things upon which it is to operate, everything else must necessarily, and by implication, be excluded. Example Centeno v. Villalon-Pornillos Issue: Whether or not solicitation for religious purposes, i.e., renovation of a church without first securing a permit from the Regional Office concerned of the Department of Social Services, constitutes a violation of P.D. No. 1564 To solicit or receive contribution for charitable or public welfare purposes Depends on whether the charitable purpose includes that of a religious purpose Held: There was no intent to include solicitations for religious purposes within coverage, otherwise it would have been expressly stated. Expressio unius est exclusio alterius is applied In Sec. 28 (3), Article VI of the Constitution, terms charitable and religious ar e separate and independent

Expressum facit cessare tacitum - what is expressed puts an end to that which is implied Exceptio firmat regulam in casibus non exceptis a thing not being excepted must be regarded as coming within purview of the general rule Example Parayno v. Jovellanos Under Article III of Official Zoning Code of Calasiao, there were certain distinctions made by the municipality about the designation of the gasoline filling station and that of the gasoline service station as appearing in Article III, Nos. 21 and 42 Zoning ordinance made a distinction between gasoline service station and gasoline filling station Section 21. Filling Station. A retail station servicing automobiles and other motor vehicles with gasoline and oil only.[ Section 42. Service Station. A building and its premises where gasoline oil, grease, batteries, tires and car accessories may be supplied and dispensed at retail and where, in addition, the following services may be rendered and sales and no other.

a. Sale and servicing of spark plugs, batteries, and distributor parts; b. Tire servicing and repair, but not recapping or regrooving; c. Replacement of mufflers and tail pipes, water hose, fan belts, brake fluids, light bulbs, fuses, floor mats, seat covers, windshield wipers and wiper blades, grease retainers, wheel, bearing, mirrors and the like; d. Radiator cleaning and flushing; e. Washing and polishing, and sale of automobile washing and polishing materials; f. Grease and lubricating; g. Emergency wiring repairs; h. Minor servicing of carburators; i. Adjusting and repairing brakes; j. Minor motor adjustments not involving removal of the head or crankcase, or raising the motor Ordinance intended the two terms to be separate and distinct from each other Ejusdem generis could not be applied Activities undertaken in a gas service station did not automatically embrace those in a gas filling station

San Pablo Manufacturing Corp. v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue Facts: SBMC is a domestic corporation engaged in the business of milling, manufacturing and exporting coconut oil and other allied products. Respondent ordered payment in the amount of Php 8,182,182.85 as taxes for the year 1987 Issue: whether or not petitioner is exempt from tax Statute: That this tax shall not apply to rope, coconut oil, palm oil and the byproduct of copra from which it is produced or manufactured and desiccated coconut, if such rope, coconut oil, palm oil, copra by-products and desiccated coconuts, shall be removed for exportation by the proprietor or operator of the factory or the miller himself, and are actually exported without returning to the Philippines, whether in their original state or as an ingredient or part of any manufactured article or product Held: SPMCs interpretation unduly enlarged the scope of the exemption clause. Pursuant to expressio unius est exclusion alterius rule, statue did not provide exemption for the materials or ingredients utilized in manufacturing the enumerated products in Sec. 168, thus petitioner is not exempted from millers tax

Argumentum a contrario - What is expressed puts an end to that which is implied. Example Chung Fook v. White Statute: Exempts wife of a NATURALIZED American from detention for treatment in a hospital, who is afflicted with a contagious disease Held: Court resorted to the negative-opposite doctrine, statute plainly relates only to the wife of a NATURALIZED citizen, not a NATIVE-BORN citizen. Petition for a writ of habeas corpus filed by a native-born American citizen was denied. Analysis: Application of the rule resulted to injustice to native-born citizens, in favor of naturalized citizens. Legislature is not supposed to discriminate against native-born citizens. Doctrine of necessary implication should have been used. Casus omissus pro omisso habendus est - A person, object or thing omitted from an enumeration must be held to have been omitted intentionally Court under its power of interpretation supply the omission even though such may have resulted from inadvertence. Exemptions: where it is shown that the legislature did not intend to exclude the person, thing, object from the enumeration. If such legislative intent is clearly indicated, the court may supply the omission if to do so will carry out the clear intent of the legislature and will not do violence to its language. Proximum antecedens fiat relatio nisi impediatur sententi, - Relative words refer to the nearest antecedents, unless the context otherwise requires. Qualifying words restrict or modify only the words or phrases to which they are immediately associated. They do not qualify words or phrases which are distantly or remotely located. In the absence of legislative intent to the contrary, preferential and qualifying words and phrases must be applied only to their immediate or last antecedent, and not to the other remote or preceding words or association of words. The maxim expressive of this rule. The use of comma to separate an antecedent from the rest exerts a dominant influence in the application of the doctrine of last antecedent. Example Florentino v. Philippine National Bank Issue: Whether or not holders of backpay certificates can compel governmentowned banks to accept said certificates in payment of the holders obligations to the bank

Statute: The holder of a backpay certificate may apply the same for the payment of obligations subsisting at the time of the approval of this amendatory act for which the applicant may directly be liable to the government or to any of its branches or instrumentalities, or to corporations owned or controlled by the government, or to any citizens of the Philippines or to any association or corporation organized under the laws of the Philippine, who may be willing to accept the same for the such settlement. Held: Pursuant to proximum antecedens fiat relatio nisi impediatur sentential, the court held that backpay certificate holders can compel government-owned banks to accept certificates as payment.

Reddendo singular singulis Referring each to each The maxim means referring each to each; referring each phrase or expression to its appropriate object, or let each be put in its proper place, that is, the words should be taken distributively. Antecedents and consequences should be read distributively to the effect that each word is to be applied to the subject to which it appears by context most appropriately related and to which it is most applicable. Example People v. Tamani Question: When to count the 15-day period within which to appeal judgment of conviction in a criminal action? Date of promulgation of judgment or date of receipt of notice of judgment? Statute: Sec. 6, Rule 122 of the Rules of Court. an appeal must be taken within 15 days from the promulgation or notice of the judgment or order appealed from Held: Should be counted from the promulgation and not from the receipt of copy of judgment. Promulgation refers to judgment, while notice refers to order.

Optima statute interpretatrix est ipsum statutum the best interpreter is the statute itself The maxim is used when ascertaining the statute as a whole. A statute is construed as to harmonize and give effect to all its provisions whenever possible. The meaning of the law must not be extracted from a single part or from isolated words and phrases but from a general consideration or view of the act as a whole, to do otherwise may give a different or limited application of a statute. Example National Tobacco Am v COA

Issue: Whether or not individuals may continue to receive educational assistance benefit prior to enactment of R.A. 6758 Conflicting provisions should be reconciled and harmonized Legislative intent is just to include the fringe benefits which are in the nature of allowances Benefit under controversy is not in the same category Educational assistance is not one of the fringe benefits within the contemplation of the first sentence of Section 12, but the 2nd in relation to section 17 of RA 6758 Ut res magis valeat quam pereat construction is to be sought which gives effect to the whole of the statute its every word Since a statue is enacted in whole and not in parts or sections, it implies that one part is as important as the other; the statue should be construed and given effect as a whole act itself. Hence, where one statute is susceptible to various interpretations, the court should adopt such reasonable and beneficial construction as will render the provision thereof operative Example JMM Promotions & Mgt. Inc. v NLRC 3 POEA Rules 1.) Cash or surety bond as a requirement for perfecting an appeal. 2.) To answer for all valid and legal claims against employer 3.) The amount to be placed in escrow to answer for claims of recruited workers. Section 6 complements Sections 4 and 17 Apparently inconsistent provisions should be reconciled whenever possible as parts of a coordinated and harmonious whole. Interpretatio fienda est ut res magis valeat quam pereat a law should be interpreted with a view to upholding rather than destroying it; interpretation as will give the thing efficacy is to be adopted A construction that would render a provision inoperative or ineffective should be avoided. It is based on the presumption that the legislature has enacted a statue whose provisions are in harmony and consistent with each other and that conflicting intentions in the same statutes are never supposed or regarded. Example Santiago v. COMELEC Facts: In this case, the Court adopted a literal meaning thus, concluded that RA 6735 is inadequate to implement the power of the people to amend the Constitution (initiative on amendments) for the following reasons: Does not suggest an initiative on amendments on to the Constitution because it is silent as to amendments on the Constitution and the word Constitution is neither germane nor relevant to said section Does not provide for the contents of a petition for initiative on the Constitution

Does not provide for subtitles for initiative on the Constitution RA is incomplete and does not provide a sufficient standard

In pari material relate to the same specific subject matter Statutes in pari material are those which relate to the same specific subject matter, although no reference is made to the other. Such should be construed together to attain the purpose of an express national policy, since it is presumed that when legislature enacts a law, it has in mind the previous statutes. Interpretare et concordare leges legibus est optimus interpretandi modus every statute must be so construed and harmonized with other statutes as to form uniform system of jurisprudence All laws are presumed to be consistent with each other; hence it is the duty of the courts to construe every statute not only to be consistent with itself but also to harmonize with other laws on the same matter, as to form a complete, coherent and intelligible system Distingue tempora et concordabis jura - distinguish times and you will harmonize laws When two or more statutes on the same subject were enacted at different times and under dissimilar circumstances or conditions, their interpretation should be in accordance with the circumstances or conditions peculiar to each, in order that the statutes may be harmonized or better understood. Actus non facit reum nisi mens sit rea - the act itself does not make a man guilty unless his intention was so General rule is that a penal statute will not be construed to make the commission of certain prohibited acts criminal without regard to the intent of the doer, unless there is a clear legislative intent to the contrary; evil intent must combine with an act. Actus me invito factus non est meus actus - an act done by me against my will is not my act Privilegia recipient largam interpretationem voluntati consonam concedentis - privileges are to be interpreted in accordance with the will of him who grants them Statutes granting advantages to private persons or entities have in many instance created special privileges or monopolies for the grantees and have thus been viewed with suspicion and strictly construed; public advantage is gained by the grant, it narrowly appears to be secondary significance compared with the advantage gained by the grantee. Nullum tempus occurrit regi State may not be sued without its consent. reaffirms universal rule that the sovereign is exempt from suit, in the absence of its consent to be sued usually in the form of a statute to that effect, not because of any formal conception or absolute theory but on the logical and practical ground that there can be no legal right depends.

vigilantibus et non dormientibus jura subveniunt - the laws aid the vigilant, not those who slumber on their rights. Statutes which require certain steps to be taken or certain conditions to be met before persons concerned can avail of the benefits conferred by law are, with respect to such requirements, considered mandatory. Potior est in tempoe, potior est in jure - he who is first in time is preferred in right