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Statutory Construction Agpalo

Important! Statutory construction principles hold true only when

there is doubt or ambiguity in the law and not when the law itself
is clear and free from doubt, leaving no room for interpretation.
Expresso unius est exclusio alterius
Express mention of one person, thing, or consequence implies the
exclusion of all others
!anons of restricti"e interpretation #ase$ on the rules of logic an$
the natural %or&ings of the human min$
Pre$icate$ upon one's o%n "oluntar( act an$ not upon that of
Premise) Legislature %oul$ not ha"e ma$e specifie$ enumerations
in a statute ha$ the intention #een not to restrict its meaning an$
confine its terms to those expressl( mentione$
Opposite of $octrine of necessar( implication
1) Expressum facit cessare tacitum
*hat is expresse$ puts an en$ to that %hich is implie$
*here a statute, #( its terms, is expressl( limite$ to certain
matters, it ma( not, #( interpretation or construction, #e
exten$e$ to other matters
2) Exceptio firmat regulam in casibus non exceptis
A general expression follo%e$ #( exceptions therefrom
implies that those %hich $o not fall un$er the exceptions
come %ithin the scope of the general expression
A thing not #eing excepte$ must #e regar$e$ as coming
%ithin the pur"ie% of the general rule
+axim of recogni,e$ utilit( is the rule that the express
exception, exemption or sa"ing exclu$es others
3) Exceptio firmat regulam in casibus non exceptis
Expression of one or more things of a class implies the
exclusion of all not expresse$, e"en though all %oul$ ha"e
#een implie$ ha$ none #een expresse$
-asis) in human experience, min$s of parties are usuall(
a$$resse$ speciall( to the particulari,ation, an$ generalities
are use$ in contemplation of that upon %hich the min$s of the
parties are centere$
Generall( use$ in the construction of statutes granting po%ers,
creating rights an$ reme$ies, restricting common rights, an$
imposing penalties an$ forfeitures, as %ell as those statutes %hich
are strictl( construe$
Not a rule of la% nor of uni"ersal application #ut a mere auxiliar(
tool of statutor( construction or a means of ascertaining the
legislati"e intent
!annot #e use$ to $efeat plainl( in$icate$ purpose of legislature,
rule not #eing inflexi#le nor a mechanical or technical tool
Limitations . %hen it $oes not appl()
/0 *here other circumstances in$icate that the enumeration %as
not inten$e$ to #e exclusi"e
10 *here the enumeration is #( %a( of example or to remo"e
$ou#ts onl(
20 If its application %ill result in incongruities or a "iolation of
the equal protection clause of the !onstitution
If there is some special reason for mentioning one thing an$
none for mentioning another %hich is other%ise %ithin the
statute, so that the a#sence of an( mention of such other %ill
not exclu$e it
In case a statute appears upon its face to limit the operation of
its pro"ision to particular persons or things #( enumerating
them, #ut no reason exists %h( other persons or things not so
enumerate$ shoul$ not ha"e #een inclu$e$ an$ manifest
in3ustice %ill follo% #( not inclu$ing them
40 If a$herence thereto %oul$ cause incon"enience, har$ship,
an$ in3ur( to the pu#lic interest
Argumentum a contrario
Also &no%n as the negati"e5opposite $octrine
*hat is expresse$ puts an en$ to that %hich is implie$
Dissimilum dissimilis est ratio
Of things $issimilar, the rule is $issimilar
Casus omissus pro omisso habendus est
A person, o#3ect or thing omitte$ from an enumeration must #e
hel$ to ha"e #een omitte$ intentionall(
Procee$s from reasona#le certaint( that P,O,T has #een omitte$
from a legislati"e enumeration
Operates an$ applies onl( if an$ %hen the omission has #een
clearl( esta#lishe$, an$ in such a case %hat is omitte$ in the
enumeration ma( not, #( construction, #e inclu$e$ therein6 !ourt
cannot suppl( omission e"en though it ma( ha"e resulte$ from
ina$"ertence or #ecause case %as not foreseen nor contemplate$6
Does not appl( %here it is sho%n that the legislature $i$ not inten$
to exclu$e the P,O,T from the enumeration6 If such legislati"e
intent is clearl( in$icate$, court ma( suppl( the omission if to $o
so %ill carr( out the clear intent of the legislature an$ %ill not $o
"iolence to its language6
Ubi lex non distinguit, nec nos distinguere debemus
*here the la% $oes not $istinguish, courts shoul$ not $istinguish
There shoul$ #e no $istinction in the application of a statute %here
none is in$icate$
7oun$e$ on logic
Assumption) Legislature ma$e no qualification in the use of a
general %or$ or expression
!orollar( of principle that general %or$s an$ phrases in a statute
shoul$ or$inaril( #e accor$e$ their natural an$ general significance
!orollar( rule) %here the la% $oes not ma&e an( exception, courts
ma( no except something therefrom, unless there is compelling
reason apparent in the la% to 3ustif( it
Applies not onl( in the construction of general %or$s an$
expressions use$ in a statute #ut also in the interpretation of a rule
lai$ $o%n therein
*here the legislature has clearl( lai$ $o%n a rule for one class of
cases it is not rea$il( to #e suppose$ that, in the same act, a
$ifferent rule has #een prescri#e$ for another class of cases %ithin
the same as the first
!ourts ma( $istinguish %hen there are facts an$ circumstances
sho%ing that the legislature inten$e$ a $istinction or qualification
8as in Gar"i$a "s6 Sales S9 mem#er or official age limit0
Reddendo singula singulis
ariation of the $octrine of last antece$ent
:eferring each to each; referring each phrase or expression to its
appropriate o#3ect, or let each #e put in its proper place, that is, the
%or$s shoul$ #e ta&en $istri#uti"el(
:equires that the antece$ents an$ consequences shoul$ #e rea$
$istri#uti"el( to the effect that each %or$ is to #e applie$ to the
su#3ect to %hich it appears #( context most appropriatel( relate$
an$ to %hich it is most applica#le
Doctrine of Necessary Implication
Ex necessitate legis < from the necessit( of the la%
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Statutory Construction Agpalo
No statute can #e enacte$ that can pro"i$e all the $etails in"ol"e$
in its application6 There is al%a(s an omission that ma( not meet a
particular situation6 So5calle$ gaps in the la% $e"elop as the la% is
*hat is implie$ in a statute is as much a part thereof as that %hich
is expresse$
E"er( statute is un$erstoo$, #( implication, to contain all such
pro"isions as ma( #e necessar( to effectuate its o#3ect an$ purpose,
or to ma&e effecti"e rights, po%ers, pri"ileges or 3uris$iction %hich
it grants, inclu$ing all such collateral an$ su#si$iar( consequences
as ma( #e fairl( an$ logicall( inferre$ from its terms 8to ma&e the
la% effecti"e an$ operati"e0
E"er( statutor( grant of po%er, right or pri"ilege is $eeme$ to
inclu$e all inci$ental po%er, right or pri"ilege #ecause the greater
inclu$es the lesser (in eo quod plus sit, simper inest et minus)
/0 Exclu$es %hat is merel( plausi#le, #eneficial or $esira#le
+a( not #e use$ to 3ustif( the inclusion in a statute of %hat to
the court appears to #e %ise an$ 3ust, unless it is at the same
time necessaril( an$ logicall( %ithin its terms
10 +a( not #e emplo(e$ to support an interpretation $estructi"e
of the o#3ect or purpose of the la%
*hat ma( #e necessaril( implie$ from a statute shoul$ #e
consistent %ith, an$ not contrar( to, the !onstitution or to
existing la%s
Implication %hich is "iolati"e of the la% is un3ustifie$ or
Office of a pro"iso is either to limit the application of the enacting
clause, section, or pro"ision of a statute, or to except something
therefrom, or to qualif( or restrain its generalit(
Primar( purpose is to limit or restrict the general language or
operation of the statute, not to enlarge it
!ommonl( foun$ at the en$ of a section, or pro"ision of a statute,
an$ is intro$uce$, as a rule, #( the %or$ ?Pro"i$e$@ or #( some
other %or$s or phrases such as ?#ut nothing herein@
*AAT DETE:+INES %hether a clause is a pro"iso is its
SB-STAN!E rather than its form, a question of legislati"e intent
General rule) qualifies or mo$ifies onl( the phrase imme$iatel(
prece$ing it or restrains or limits the generalit( of the clause that it
imme$iatel( follo%s, unless it is clear that the legislature inten$e$
it to ha"e a %i$er scope
Shoul$ #e construe$ as to harmoni,e, not to repeal or $estro(, the
main pro"ision of the statute
*hen there is irreconcila#le conflict #et%een pro"iso an$ main
pro"ision of statute, that %hich is locate$ in a later portion of the
statute pre"ails, unless there is legislati"e intent to the contrar( or
such construction %ill $estro( the %hole statute itself6 This is so
#ecause the later pro"ision is the latest expression of the intent of
the legislature6
Other functions of pro"iso)
/0 +a( enlarge scope of la%
+a( enlarge, instea$ of restrict or limit, %hat other%ise is a
phrase of limite$ import ha$ there #een no pro"iso qualif(ing
10 +a( assume the role of a$$itional legislation
A clear an$ unqualifie$ purpose expresse$ in the opening
statement of a section of a statute comprising se"eral
su#$i"isions has #een construe$ as controlling an$ limiting a
pro"iso attache$ to one of the su#$i"isions, %here the
pro"iso, if segregate$ therefrom, %oul$ mean exactl( the
re"erse of %hat it necessaril( implie$ %hen rea$ in
connection %ith the limitation
Eception !lauses
!onsists of that %hich %oul$ other%ise #e inclu$e$ in the
pro"ision from %hich it is excepte$
!lause %hich exempts something from the operation of a statute #(
express %or$s
Generall( expresse$ as ?EC!EPT,@ ?BNLESS OTAE:*ISE,@
an$ ?SAALL NOT APPLD@, %or$s use$ to ta&e out of the
enactment something %hich %oul$ other%ise #e part of its su#3ect
Exception if it remo"es something from the operation of a
pro"ision of la%
7unction neither to color nor to $ominate nor to $estro( the general
rule #ut rather, to confirm the general rule6 Shoul$ not #e construe$
to qualif( the %or$s or phrases constituting the general rule6
Express mention of exceptions operates to exclu$e other
exceptions, %hich means those not enumerate$ are inclu$e$ in the
general rule
General rule) strictl( #ut reasona#l( construe$; exten$ onl( insofar
as their language fairl( %arrants; all $ou#ts shoul$ #e resol"e$ in
fa"or of the general pro"isions rather than the exception
Eception !lauses vs. Provisos
/0 As to operation of statute
E) exempt something a#solutel( from the
operation of a statute #( express %or$s in the enacting clause
P) $efeats its operation con$itionall(
10 As to limitation E restriction of statute
E) ta&es out of the statute something that
other%ise %oul$ #e a part of the su#3ect matter of it
P) a"oi$s them #( %a( of $efeasance or excuse
20 As to nature "is5F5"is enactment
E) Generall( a part of the enactment itself,
a#solutel( exclu$ing from its operation some su#3ect or thing
that other%ise %oul$ fall %ithin its scope
P) enactment is mo$ifie$ #( engrafting upon it a
ne% pro"ision, #( %a( of amen$ment, pro"i$ing
con$itionall( for a ne% case
E G P similar in that the( #oth except something from an enacting
Saving !lauses
!lause %hich operates to except from the effect of the la% %hat the
clause pro"i$es, or to sa"e something %hich %oul$ other%ise #e
Bsuall( use$ to except or sa"e something from the effect of a
repeal of a statute
o Legislature ma( preser"e right of state to prosecute an$ punish
offenses committe$ in "iolation of a repeale$ la%
o *here existing proce$ure is altere$ or su#stitute$ #( another,
usual to sa"e procee$ings pen$ing un$er the ol$ la% at the time
the ne% la% ta&es effect
!onstrue in the light of the legislati"e intent an$ purpose, principal
consi$eration #eing to effectuate such intent or carr( out such
Either li#eral or strict construction $epen$ing upon the &in$ of
interpretation that shoul$, consi$ering its nature, #e gi"en to the
statute as a %hole
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Statutory Construction Agpalo
!onstruction of Statute as a "hole
Statute is passe$ as a %hole an$ not in parts or sections an$ is
animate$ #( one general purpose an$ intent
Intent or meaning of a statute shoul$ #e ascertaine$ from the
statute ta&en as a %hole an$ not from an isolate$ part or pro"ision
Purpose or context as controlling gui$e
o A statute must recei"e such reasona#le construction as %ill ma&e
all its parts harmoni,e %ith each other an$ ren$er them
consistent %ith its scope an$ o#3ect6
Gi"ing effect to statute as a %hole
o E"er( part of a statute shoul$ #e gi"en effect #ecause a statute is
enacte$ as an integrate$ measure an$ not as a ho$gepo$ge of
conflicting pro"isions
o Ut res magis valeat quam pereat = construction is to #e sought
%hich gi"es effect to the %hole of the statute . its e"er( %or$
o *here a statute is suscepti#le of more than one interpretation,
the court shoul$ a$opt such reasona#le an$ #eneficial
construction as %ill ren$er the pro"ision thereof operati"e an
effecti"e an$ harmonious %ith each other
*here there is a particular or special pro"ision an$ a general
pro"ision in the same statute an$ the latter in its most
comprehensi"e sense %oul$ o"errule the former, the particular or
special pro"ision is construe$ as an exception to the general
La% shoul$ #e interprete$ %ith a "ie% to uphol$ing rather than
$estro(ing it (Interpretatio fienda est ut res magis valeat quam
Presumption) Legislature has enacte$ a statute %hose pro"isions
are in harmon( an$ consistent %ith each other an$ that conflicting
intentions in the same statute are ne"er suppose$ or regar$e$6 La%
enacte$ is complete #( itself, that the legislature $i$ perform its
function %ell an$ that it inten$e$ to impart to its enactment such a
meaning as %ill ren$er it operati"e an$ effecti"e6
*here a#solute harmon( #et%een parts of a statute is
$emonstra#l( not possi#le, the court must re3ect that one %hich is
lease in accor$ %ith the general plan of the %hole statute
o In case of irreconcila#le conflict #et%een t%o pro"isions of the
same statute, the last in or$er of position is frequentl( hel$ to
pre"ail unless it clearl( appears that the intent of the legislature
is other%ise
o The circumstances of their passage, among other ai$s to
construction, shoul$ also #e inquire$ into to $etermine %hich
shoul$ pre"ail
!onstruction in #elation to $ther Statutes
Statute shoul$ #e construe$ in harmon( %ith, an$ not in "iolation
of, the fun$amental la%6 Legislature presume$ to ha"e a$here$ to
the constitutional limitations6
o If there is $ou#t or uncertaint( as to the meaning of the
legislature, that interpretation %ill #e a$opte$ %hich %ill a"oi$
the effect of unconstitutionalit(, e"en though it ma( #e
necessar(, for this purpose, to $isregar$ the more usual or
apparent import of the language emplo(e$6 Ao%e"er, court
cannot, in or$er to #ring a statute %ithin the fun$amental la%,
amen$ it #( construction6
Statutes in pari materia
o *hen the( relate to the same person or thing, or ha"e the same
purpose or o#3ect, or co"er the same specific or particular
su#3ect matter
o Statute shoul$ #e so construe$ not onl( to #e consistent %ith
itself #ut also to harmoni,e %ith other la%s on the same su#3ect
matter as to form a complete, coherent an$ intelligi#le s(stem
o Interpretare et concordare leges legibus est optimus
interpretandi modus < #est metho$i of interpretation is that
%hich ma&es la%s consistent %ith other la%s; e"er( statute must
#e so construe$ an$ harmoni,e$ %ith other statutes as to form a
uniform s(stem of 3urispru$ence
o istingue tempora et concordabis !ura < $istinguish times an$
(ou %ill harmoni,e la%s
o Presumption) all la%s are consistent %ith each other
o Assumption) *hene"er the legislature enacts a la%, it has in
min$ the pre"ious statutes relating to the same su#3ect matter,
an$ in the a#sence of an( express repeal or amen$ment, the ne%
statute is $eeme$ enacte$ in accor$ %ith the legislati"e polic(
em#o$ie$ in those prior statutes6 Later statutes are
supplementar( or complimentar( to the earlier enactments6
o Huestion is %hether the later act has implie$l( amen$e$ or
repeale$ the earlier statute6 In case of $ou#t, the $ou#t %ill #e
resol"e$ against implie$ amen$ment or repeal an$ in fa"or of
harmoni,ation of all the la%s on the su#3ect6
o Statute %ill not #e construe$ as repealing a prior act on the same
su#3ect in the a#sence of %or$s to that effect unless there is an
irreconcila#le repugnanc( #et%een them or unless the ne% la%
is e"i$entl( inten$e$ to superse$e all prior acts on the matter
an$ to comprise itself the sole an$ complete s(stem of
legislation on the su#3ect
General an$ special statutes
o General . one %hich em#races a class of su#3ects or places an$
$oes not omit an( su#3ect or place naturall( #elonging to such
class; one of uni"ersal application affecting the entire
o Special . one %hich relates to particular persons or things of a
class or to a particular portion or section of the state onl(
o 7act that one la% is special an$ the other general creates a
presumption that the special act is to #e consi$ere$ as remaining
an exception of the general act, one as a general la% of the lan$
an$ the other as the la% of the particular case; perio$ %hen the
special la% %as passe$ is irrele"ant
o *here t%o statutes are of equal theoretical application to a
particular case, the one $esigne$ therefor speciall( shoul$
o :eason) Legislature in passing a la% of special character has its
attention $irecte$ to the special facts an$ circumstances %hich
the special act is inten$e$ to meet
o Presumption) General la% refers to the su#3ect in general an$ the
special la% treats the same su#3ect in particular6
o Exceptions)
/0 *here the legislature clearl( inten$e$ the later general
enactment to co"er the %hole su#3ect an$ to repeal all prior
la%s inconsistent there%ith, the general la% pre"ails o"er a
special la% on the su#3ect6 Special la% repeale$6
10 *here the special la% merel( esta#lishes a general rule
%hile the general la% creates a specific an$ special rule,
general la% pre"ails6
:eference statutes
o A statute %hich refers to other statutes an$ ma&es them
applica#le to the su#3ect of legislation
o Incorporation in a statute of another statute #( reference
o 7requentl( use$ to a"oi$ encum#ering the statute #oo&s of
unnecessar( repetition
o A$option #( reference of a statute that %as pre"iousl( repeale$
re"i"es the statute
o A$option ta&es the a$opte$ statute as it exists at the time of
a$option an$ $oes not inclu$e su#sequent changes or
mo$ification of the statute so ta&en, unless it $oes so expressl(
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Statutory Construction Agpalo
o !onstrue$ as to harmoni,e %ith, an$ gi"e effect to, the a$opte$
Supplemental statutes
o One inten$e$ to suppl( $eficiencies in an existing statute an$ to
a$$ to, complete, or exten$ the statute %ithout changing or
mo$if(ing its original text
:eenacte$ statutes
o Statute %hich reenacts a pre"ious statute or the pro"isions
thereof; one in %hich the pro"isions of an earlier statute are
repro$uce$ in the same or su#stantiall( the same %or$s
o Legislati"e expression of intention to a$opt the construction as
%ell as the language of the prior act
o *hen a statute or a pro"ision thereof has #een construe$ #( the
Supreme !ourt an$ the same is su#stantiall( reenacte$, the
legislature ma( #e regar$e$ as a$opting such construction, an$
the construction #ecomes an integral part of the reenacte$ statute
%ith the force an$ effect of a legislati"e comman$
o *here a statute pro"i$es that all la%s not inconsistent %ith the
pro"isions thereof are $eeme$ incorporate$ an$ ma$e integral
parts thereof #( reference, such pre"ious la%s on the same
su#3ect matter are $eeme$ reenacte$
A$opte$ statutes
o A statute patterne$ after, or copie$ from a statute of a foreign
o Presumption) Legislature a$opte$ such construction an$
practices %ith the a$option of the la% #ut $oes not appl( to
construction gi"en the statute su#sequent to its a$option,
although it has persuasi"e effect on the interpretation
Strict and %iberal !onstruction
9in$ of construction $epen$s upon the nature of the statute, the
purpose to #e su#ser"e$ an$ the mischief to #e reme$ie$; that
%hich %ill #est accomplish the en$ $esire$ an$ effectuate
legislati"e intent
Strict construction
o !onstruction accor$ing to the letter of a statute, %hich
recogni,es nothing that is not expresse$, ta&es the language use$
in its exact meaning, an$ a$mits no equita#le consi$eration
o Scope shall not #e exten$e$ or enlarge$ #( implication,
inten$ment, or equita#le consi$eration #e(on$ the literal
meaning of its terms
o !lose an$ conser"ati"e a$herence to the literal or textual
Li#eral construction
o Such equita#le construction as %ill enlarge the letter of a statute
to accomplish its inten$e$ purpose, carr( out its intent, or
promote 3ustice
o Does not mean enlargement of a pro"ision %hich is clear,
unam#iguous an$ free from $ou#t for a statute %hich is plain
an$ clear is not su#3ect to construction
o Statute %ill #e gi"en a li#eral interpretation so as to sa"e the
statute from o#literation
Li#eral construction "s6 Iu$icial legislation
o !onstruction) court from the language use$, the su#3ect matter,
an$ the purpose of the legislature %ill #e a#le to fin$ out the true
meaning of the statute; legitimate exercise of 3u$icial po%er
o Legislation) act of the court in engrafting upon a la% something
%hich it #elie"es ought to ha"e #een em#race$ therein;
for#i$$en #( the tripartite $i"ision of po%ers
!onstruction shoul$ promote social 3ustice . constitutional
!onstruction shoul$ promote general %elfare or gro%th of
o :eason of the la% is the life of the la%
o "alus populi suprema lex < "oice of the people is the supreme
o "tatuta pro publico commodo late interpretantur < statutes
enacte$ for the pu#lic goo$ are to #e construe$ li#erall(
Strict !onstruction
:emem#er that rules of interpretation are rules of construction, not
Penal statutes against the state
o Test is %hether a penalt( is impose$ for the punishment of a
%rong to the pu#lic or for the re$ress of an in3ur( to an
o Strictl( construe$ against the state an$ li#erall( in fa"or of the
o *here a statute penali,es the omission of an act on certain
specific occasions, it cannot #e construe$ to penali,e it on all
o No person shoul$ #e #rought %ithin the terms of a statute %ho is
not clearl( %ithin them, nor shoul$ an( act #e pronounce$
criminal %hich is not clearl( ma$e so #( the statute
o :eason) safeguar$ the rights of the accuse$ an$ at the same time
preser"e the o#"ious intention of the legislature; purpose is to
pro"i$e a precise $efinition of for#i$$en acts
o Acts in an$ of themsel"es innocent an$ la%ful cannot #e hel$ to
#e criminal unless there is a clear an$ unequi"ocal expression of
the legislati"e intent to ma&e them such
o #ctus non facit reum nisi mens sit rea < the act itself $oes not
ma&e a man guilt( unless his intention %ere so
o #ctus me invito factus non est meus actus < an for the support of
the go"ernmentact $one #( me against m( %ill is not m( act
o !onstruction $epen$s upon the intent of the legislature, ta&ing
into consi$eration the nature of the offense, the purpose to #e
accomplishe$ an$ such other factors as %ill thro% light upon the
meaning of the language
o Limitations)
/0 *here the language is plain an$ positi"e, %illful intent an$
purpose, nothing is left to interpretation
10 *here a literal meaning %oul$ lea$ to a#sur$it(,
contra$iction, in3ustice, or %oul$ $efeat the clear purpose
of the la%, the court shoul$ consi$er the spirit an$ reason of
a statute6 Strict construction of a criminal statute $oes not
mean such construction as to $epri"e it of the meaning
Statutes in $erogation of rights against the state
o State ma( enact legislations curtailing or restricting en3o(ment
of certain rights 8inherent, guarantee$ #( !onstitution or
protecte$ #( la%0 in the exercise of its police po%er
o *here there are t%o reasona#l( possi#le constructions, one
%hich %oul$ $iminish or restrict a fun$amental right of the
people an$ the other %hich %oul$ not $o so, the latter
construction must #e a$opte$ so as to allo% full en3o(ment of
such fun$amental right
Statutes granting pri"ileges to certain entities against the grantee
o Those %ho in"o&e a special pri"ilege grante$ #( a statute must
compl( strictl( %ith its pro"isions or lose them
o $rivilegia recipiunt largam interpretationem voluntati
consonam concedentis < pri"ileges are to #e interprete$ in
accor$ance %ith the %ill of him %ho grants them
o ura lex sed lex < the la% ma( #e harsh, #ut that is the la%;
applie$ in the matter of rights an$ pri"ileges grante$ su#3ect to
Legislati"e grants to local go"ernment units against the grantee
=T(pe text>
Statutory Construction Agpalo
o Grants of a pu#lic nature 8usuall( a gratuitous $onation of pu#lic
mone( or propert(0 %hich result in an unfair a$"antage to the
o Narro%l( restricte$ in fa"or of the pu#lic
Statutor( groun$s for suspension or remo"al of pu#lic officials
o :eme$( of remo"al is a $rastic one an$ penal in nature
o Strictl( construe$ to pre"ent in3ustice an$ harm to the pu#lic
o Distinguishes #et%een the character of the man an$ the
character of the officer, an$ limits the groun$s for remo"al to
onl( those as enumerate$
Naturali,ation la%s against the applicant
o :ight to #ecome a citi,en #( naturali,ation is statutor(, not
Statutes imposing taxes an$ customs $uties most strongl( against
the state
o -ur$ens are not to #e impose$ nor presume$ to #e impose$
#e(on$ %hat statutes expressl( an$ clearl( import
o :eason) #ur$ens personal an$ propert( rights of the people;
taxation a $estructi"e po%er
Statutes granting tax exemptions against the taxpa(er
o Taxation life#loo$ of nation an$ as such, is the rule an$
exemption the exception
o -asis) to minimi,e the $ifferent treatment an$ foster impartialit(,
fairness, an$ equalit( of treatment among taxpa(ers
o Limitations)
/0 *here the la% pro"i$es no qualification for the granting of
tax exemption, the court is not at li#ert( to suppl( one
10 Does not appl( in tax exemptions in fa"or of the
go"ernment itself or its agencies 8exemption is the rule,
taxation the exemption0
Statutes concerning the so"ereign
o :estricti"e statutes imposing #ur$ens on the pu#lic treasur(
strictl( construe$
o Do not em#race the so"ereign unless the so"ereign is
specificall( mentione$
Statutes authori,ing suits against the go"ernment
o -asis) There can #e no legal right as against the authorit( that
ma&es the la% on %hich the right $epen$s (%ullum tempus
occurrit regi)
o Su#3ects the state to incon"enience an$ loss of go"ernmental
o +a( not #e circum"ente$ #( $irecting the action against the
officers of the state instea$ of against the state itself
o !onsent to #e sue$ shoul$ not #e interprete$ to authori,e
garnishment of pu#lic fun$s to satisf( a 3u$gment against the
State or the issuance of a %rit of execution against go"ernment
Statutes prescri#ing formalities of %ill against testator
o *ill must #e execute$ in accor$ance %ith statutor( requirements
or else entirel( "oi$
o !ourt is see&ing to ascertain an$ appl( legislators' intent, not
Exceptions an$ Pro"isos against exceptions an$ in fa"or of general
o Preference is an exception to the general rule
%iberal !onstruction
General %elfare legislation in fa"or of those %hom the la%
inten$e$ to #enefit
o Statutes enacte$ to implement the social 3ustice an$ protection5
to5la#or pro"isions of the !onstitution
o La#or la%s, tenanc( la%s, lan$ reform la%s, social securit( la%s
General %elfare clause on the po%er of local go"ernments in fa"or
of LGBs
o 1 #ranches)
/0 +ain trun& of municipal authorit(
Or$inances an$ regulations necessar( to carr(
into effect an$ $ischarge the po%ers an$ $uties conferre$
upon local legislati"e #o$ies #( la%
10 In$epen$ent of the specific functions enumerate$ #( la%
Or$inances necessar( an$ proper to pro"i$e for
the health an$ safet(, promote the prosperit(, impro"e the
morals, peace, goo$ or$er, comfort, an$ con"enience of the
LGB an$ the inha#itants thereof, an$ for the protection of
propert( therein
o +ore po%ers to LGBs in promoting economic con$ition, social
%elfare an$ material progress of the people in the communit(
o Elastic an$ must #e responsi"e to "arious social con$itions
Statutes prescri#ing limitations on taxing po%ers in fa"or of LGBs
o /JK2 !onstitution gi"es LGBs po%er to create its o%n sources
of re"enue an$ to le"( taxes, etc6
Statutes prescri#ing prescripti"e perio$ to collect taxes in fa"or of
o -eneficial to #oth go"ernment 8tax officers o#lige$ to act
promptl(0 an$ citi,ens 8securit( against unscrupulous tax
o :eme$ial measure to #ring a#out #eneficial purpose of affor$ing
protection to taxpa(ers
Statutes imposing penalties for nonpa(ment of tax in fa"or of
o Supporte$ #( strong reasons of pu#lic polic( an$ imperati"es of
pu#lic %elfare
o Inten$e$ to hasten tax pa(ments or to punish e"asions or neglect
of $ut( in respect thereto
o Shoul$ #e construe$ to a"oi$ the possi#ilities of tax e"asions
Election la%s to gi"e effect to the express %ill of the electorate
o Inten$e$ to safeguar$ the %ill of the people in their choice of
their representati"es; in"ol"es pu#lic interest
o Technicalities shoul$ not #e sanctione$ %hen it %ill #e an
o#stacle in the $etermination of the true %ill of the electorate
Amnest( proclamations in fa"or of amnest(
o Purpose) encourage the return to the fol$ of the la% of those %ho
ha"e "eere$ from it
o Amnest( an$ par$on s(non(mous thus, grant of par$on shoul$
li&e%ise #e construe$ li#erall( in fa"or of those par$one$
Statutes prescri#ing prescriptions of crimes in fa"or of the accuse$
o Statute of limitation or prescription of offense in the nature of an
amnest( grante$ #( the state after a certain time has passe$
o Li#eralit( of construction #elongs to all acts of amnest( an$
A$option statutes in fa"or of the a$opte$
o Li#eral concept that the statutes hol$ the interest an$ %elfare of
the chil$ to #e of paramount consi$eration
o Li#erall( construe$ to promote the no#le an$ compassionate
o#3ecti"es of the la%
eteran an$ retirement pension la%s in fa"or of pensioners
o :eme$ial in character
o Expression of gratitu$e to an$ recognition of those %ho
ren$ere$ ser"ice to the countr( #( exten$ing to them regular
monetar( #enefit
o Li#erall( construe$ to the en$ that their no#le purpose is #est
accomplishe$ #ut shoul$ pre"ent a person from recei"ing $ou#le
pension or compensation unless the la% pro"i$es other%ise
=T(pe text>
Statutory Construction Agpalo
o 8case la%0 A$ministrati"e regulations a$opte$ un$er legislati"e
authorit( #( a particular $epartment must #e in harmon( %ith
the pro"isions of the la%, an$ shoul$ #e for the sole purpose of
carr(ing into effect its general pro"isions
:ules of !ourt in fa"or of litigants
o Proce$ural in character
o Purpose) the proper, 3ust, spee$( an$ inexpensi"e $etermination
of a litigation
o Shoul$ not #e interprete$ to sacrifice su#stantial rights of a
litigant at the altar of technicalities to the consequent
impairment of the principles of 3ustice
o Litigants shoul$ #e gi"en ample opportunit( to pro"e their
respecti"e claims an$ a possi#le $enial of su#stantial 3ustice $ue
to legal technicalities shoul$ #e a"oi$e$
Other statutes
o :eme$ial in nature
o :e$emption la%s purpose) to ena#le the $e#tor to ha"e his
propert( applie$ to pa( as man( of his lia#ilities as possi#le
o !onstruction in fa"or of exemption from execution 8#eneficent
an$ humane purpose0
o La%s on attachment to promote their o#3ects an$ assist the
parties in o#taining spee$( 3ustice
o *arehouse receipt la%s in fa"or of bona fide hol$ers of such
o Pro#ation la% #( exten$ing the #enefits thereof to an(one not
specificall( $isqualifie$ 8purpose is to gi"e offen$ers a secon$
chance to maintain his place in societ( through the process of
o Statute granting po%ers to a !onstitutional agenc( for the
a$"ancement of the purposes an$ o#3ecti"es for %hich it %as
&andatory and Directory Statutes
!lassification is important in resol"ing the question of %hat effect
shoul$ #e gi"en to the man$ate of a statute
No a#solute test for $etermining classification #ut primar( o#3ect
is to ascertain legislati"e intent %hich must #e o#taine$ from all
the surroun$ing circumstances 8entire statute, nature, o#3ect,
purpose, legislati"e histor(, in connection %ith other relate$
statutes, consequences in construing it one %a( or the other0
Does not $epen$ on form of statute #ut on its effect
Depen$s on %hether the thing $irecte$ to #e $one is of the essence
of the thing require$ or is a mere matter of form
Determine$ primaril( from the language of the statute; ?shall@ an$
?ma(@ rule is not a#solute
A negati"e statute is man$ator(
o One expresse$ in negati"e %or$s or in the form of an affirmati"e
proposition qualifie$ #( the %or$ ?onl(,@ sai$ %or$ ha"ing the
force of an exclusionar( negation
o !annot #e $irector( since onl( one %a( to o#e(
Distinction applica#le to #oth fun$amental an$ statutor( la%s
&andatory Statutes
+atter of su#stance
Legislati"e intent that compliance essential to the "ali$it( of an act
Statute %hich contains %or$s of comman$ or of prohi#ition (s&all,
must, oug&t, s&ould, cannot, s&all not, oug&t not)
*here a statute pro"i$es for the $oing of some act %hich is
require$ #( 3ustice or pu#lic $ut(, or %here it "ests a pu#lic #o$(
or officer %ith po%er an$ authorit( to ta&e such action %hich
concerns the pu#lic interest or rights of in$i"i$uals
*hat la% $ecrees must #e o#e(e$ against pain of sanction or
$eclaration of nullit( of %hat is $one in $isregar$ thereof
Statutes conferring po%er
o !onstrue$ as imposing rather than conferring pri"ileges since
for #enefit of thir$ persons, not of pu#lic officers
Statutes granting #enefits
o *hen certain con$itions are require$ #efore #enefits can #e
a"aile$ of, con$itions man$ator(
Statutes prescri#ing 3uris$ictional requirements
o Statutor( requirements #( %hich courts or tri#unals acquire
3uris$iction to hear an$ $eci$e particular actions must #e strictl(
complie$ %ith #efore the courts or tri#unals can ha"e authorit(
to procee$
Statutes prescri#ing time to ta&e action or to appeal
o In$ispensa#le to the pre"ention of nee$less $ela(s an$ to the
or$erl( an$ spee$( $ischarge of #usiness
o Necessar( inci$ent to the proper, efficient, an$ or$erl( $ischarge
of 3u$icial functions
o :equire strict, not su#stantial, compliance an$ are not %ai"a#le
nor can the( #e su#3ect to agreements or stipulations
o Iuris$ictional 8proce$ural0 in nature
o :eason) soun$ pu#lic polic( $eman$s that 3u$gments shoul$
#ecome final at some $efinite $ate fixe$ #( la% (Interest
reipublicae ut sit finis litium < pu#lic interest requires that #( the
"er( nature of things there must #e an en$ to a legal
Statutes prescri#ing proce$ural requirements
o E"er( act %hich is 3uris$ictional, or of the essence of the
procee$ings, or is prescri#e$ for the protection or #enefit of the
part( affecte$
Election la%s on con$uct of election
o Affects the con$uct of the elections an$ those %hich $irect or
require election officials to $o or perform certain acts;
proce$ural in nature
o Purpose) to preser"e the sanctit( of the #allot an$ carr( out the
%ill of the electorate
o +an$ator( #efore the elections; $irector( after especiall( if
"oters %ill #e $epri"e$ of their "otes %ithout an( fault on their
part if man$ator(
Election la%s on qualification an$ $isqualification
o +an$ator( %hether #efore or after elections
Statutes prescri#ing qualifications for office
o Eligi#ilit( to a pu#lic office is of a continuing nature an$ must
exist at the commencement of the term an$ $uring the
occupanc( of the office
o If a person is not qualifie$ at the time he assume$ office, or he
loses such eligi#ilit( or qualifications $uring the continuance of
his incum#enc(, he ma( #e ouste$ from office
Statutes relating to assessment of taxes
o +an$ator( %hen inten$e$ for the securit( of the citi,ens, to
insure the equalit( of taxation, for certaint( as to the nature an$
amount of each other's tax
o Director( %hen merel( for information or $irection of officers
or to secure metho$ical an$ s(stematic mo$es of procee$ings
Statutes concerning pu#lic auction sale
o In $erogation of propert( rights an$ $ue process
o +an$ator( %ith respect to the prescri#e$ proce$ure
Directory Statutes
+atter of con"enience
No su#stantial rights $epen$ on it, no in3ur( can result from
ignoring it, an$ the legislati"e intent can #e accomplishe$ in a
=T(pe text>
Statutory Construction Agpalo
manner other than that prescri#e$ %ith su#stantiall( the same
Statute %hich is permissi"e or $iscretionar( in nature (ma')
Noncompliance not necessar( to "ali$it( of the act
!onstitutional pro"isions are $irector( %here the( refer to matters
merel( proce$ural
Statutes prescri#ing gui$ance for officers
o Do not limit their po%er or ren$er its exercise in $isregar$ of the
requisitions ineffectual
o :egulations $esigne$ to secure or$er, s(stem an$ $ispatch in
Statutes prescri#ing manner of 3u$icial action
o :equirements that 3u$ges shoul$ follo% in the $ischarge of their
o Purpose) to pro"i$e an or$erl( proce$ure for the con$uct of
pu#lic #usiness
o Proce$ure merel( secon$ar( to su#stanti"e right
Statutes requiring ren$ition of $ecision %ithin prescri#e$ perio$
8!onstitutional time pro"isions0
o Director( unless language of the statute contains negati"e %or$s
or sho%s that the $esignation of the time %as inten$e$ as a
limitation of po%er, authorit( or right
o Groun$ of expe$ienc() less in3ur( results to the general pu#lic
#( $isregar$ing than enforcing the letter of the la%
o 7ailure to compl( %ithin prescri#e$ perio$ $oes not $epri"e
3u$ges of 3uris$iction #ut the( %ill face a$ministrati"e sanctions
Prospective and #etroactive Statutes
Presumption) All la%s operate prospecti"el(, unless inten$e$
other%ise #( express $eclaration or necessar( implication, %hether
the statute is in the form of an original enactment, an amen$ment
or a repeal
o (ex prospicit, non respicit < la% loo&s for%ar$, not #ac&%ar$
o (ex de futuro, !udex de praeterito < la% pro"i$es for the future,
the 3u$ge for the past
o %ova constitutio futuris formam imponere debet non praeteritis
< a ne% statute shoul$ affect the future, not the past
:eason) a la% is a rule esta#lishe$ to gui$e actions %ith no #in$ing
effect until it is enacte$; has no application to past #ut onl( to
future times
Presumption stronger %ith reference to su#stanti"e la%s affecting
pen$ing actions or procee$ings
La% ma( #e ma$e operati"e partl( on facts that occurre$ prior to
the effecti"it( of such la% %ithout #eing retroacti"e
Prospecti"it( applies to statutes, a$ministrati"e rulings an$
circulars an$ 3u$icial $ecisions 8e"i$ence of %hat the la%s mean0
General rule $oes not appl( to statutes relating to reme$ies or
mo$es of proce$ure %hich neither create ne% nor ta&e a%a( "este$
rights #ut onl( operate in furtherance of the reme$( or
confirmation of rights alrea$( existing an$ is presumpti"el(
applica#le to all actions
*or$ ?shall@ implies that the la%ma&ers inten$ the enactment to
#e effecti"e onl( in the future
*hen la% expressl( pro"i$es that it shall #e retroacti"e #ut it
"iolates an( of the constitutional restrictions, it shall #e applie$
prospecti"el( to sa"e it from #eing $eclare$ unconstitutional
Prospective Statutes
One %hich operates upon facts or transactions that occur after the
statute ta&es effect, one that loo&s an$ applies to the future
Penal statutes
o %ullum crimen sine poena, nulla poena sine legis < there is no
crime %ithout a penalt(, an$ there is no penalt( %ithout a la%
o Art6 1/ :P!
Ex post facto la%
o :etroacti"e application prohi#ite$ #( !onstitution #ut limite$ in
scope an$ applies onl( to penal matters, not to la%s %hich
concern ci"il procee$ings generall( or %hich affect or regulate
ci"il or pri"ate rights or political pri"ilege
o Test) Does the la% sought to #e applie$ retroacti"el( ta&e from
an accuse$ an( right that %as regar$e$ at the time as "ital for the
protection of life an$ li#ert(L Des < EP7 la%
/0 La% %hich ma&es criminal an act $one #efore the passage of the
la% an$ %hich %as innocent %hen $one, an$ punishes such
10 La% %hich aggra"ates a crime, or ma&es it greater than it %as,
%hen committe$
20 La% %hich changes the punishment an$ inflicts a greater
punishment than that annexe$ to the crime %hen committe$
40 La% %hich alters the legal rules of e"i$ence, an$ authori,es
con"iction upon less or $ifferent testimon( than the la%
require$ at the time of the commission of the offense
M0 La% %hich assumes to regulate ci"il rights an$ reme$ies onl(,
#ut in effect imposes penalt( or $epri"ation of a right for
something %hich %hen $one %as la%ful
N0 La% %hich $epri"es a person accuse$ of a crime of some la%ful
protection to %hich he has #ecome entitle$, such as protection
of a former con"iction or acquittal, or a proclamation of
-ill of attain$er prohi#ite$ #( !onstitution
o Legislati"e act %hich inflicts punishment %ithout 3u$icial trial;
has EP7 features
o !haracteristics) singling out of a $efinite minorit(; imposition of
a #ur$en on it; legislati"e intent; retroacti"e application to past
o Essence) su#stitution of a legislati"e for a 3u$icial $etermination
of guilt
o Purpose of constitutional #ar) implement the principle of
separation of po%ers #( confining the legislature to rule5ma&ing
an$ there#( forestalling legislati"e usurpation of 3u$icial
o Aistor() -oA emplo(e$ to suppress unpopular causes an$
political minorities
Statutes su#stanti"e in nature
o La% %hich creates, $efines or regulates rights concerning life,
li#ert( or propert( an$ $uties %hich gi"e rise to a cause of
action, or the po%ers of agencies or instrumentalities for the
a$ministration of pu#lic affairs; that %hich $eclares %hat acts
are crimes an$ prescri#es the punishment for committing them
8as applie$ to criminal la%0
o Su#stanti"e right < one %hich inclu$es those rights %hich one
en3o(s un$er the legal s(stem prior to the $istur#ance of normal
o +a( not #e construe$ retroacti"el( %ithout someho% affecting
pre"ious or past rights or o#ligations
o +a( not retroact to go"ern pen$ing procee$ings in the a#sence
of clear contrar( legislati"e intent an$ no "este$ rights are
o :ule) case must #e $eci$e$ in the light of the la% as it exists at
the time of the $ecision #( the appellate court, %here the statute
changing the la% is inten$e$ to #e retroacti"e an$ to appl( to
pen$ing litigations; true though it ma( result in the re"ersal of a
3u$gment %hich %as correct at the time it %as ren$ere$ #( trial
court #ut su#3ect to limitation concerning constitutional
restrictions against impairment of "este$ rights
Statutes affecting "este$ rights
=T(pe text>
Statutory Construction Agpalo
o este$ right or interest < some right or interest in propert( that
has #ecome fixe$ or esta#lishe$ an$ is no longer open to $ou#t
or contro"ers(; a#solute, complete, an$ uncon$itional,
in$epen$ent of a contingenc(
o Inchoate rights %hich ha"e not #een acte$ on are not "este$
o Prospecti"e operation to sustain its constitutionalit( %here a
retroacti"e application %ill pro$uce in"ali$it( #( impairing or
interfering %ith "este$ or existing su#stanti"e rights
Statutes affecting o#ligations of contract
o !ontract must #e in accor$ance %ith the applica#le la% at the
time of execution
o !onstitution prohi#its enactment of a la% impairing the
o#ligation of contracts
o If a contract is legal at its inception, it cannot #e ren$ere$ illegal
#( a su#sequent legislation
o 7or a right to accrue is one thing; enforcement thereof #( actual
pa(ment is another
:epealing an$ amen$ator( acts
o General rule on prospecti"e operation of statutes also applies to
amen$ator( acts e"en if the( are generall( construe$ as
#ecoming a part of the original act as if it ha$ al%a(s #een
containe$ therein
o After an act is amen$e$, the original act continues to #e in force
%ith regar$ to all rights that ha$ accrue$ prior to such
Statutes relating to prescription
o Proce$ural in nature
o General rule) applies to all actions file$ after its effecti"it(
o Prospecti"e in the sense that it applies to causes that accrue$ an$
%ill accrue after it too& effect an$ retroacti"e in the sense that it
applies to causes that accrue$ #efore its passage
o Legislature usuall( manifests its intent to appl( a statute of
limitation retroacti"el(
Statutes relating to appeals
o :ight to appeal from a$"erse 3u$gment statutor( an$ ma( #e
restricte$ or ta&en a%a(
o :eme$ial or proce$ural in nature an$ applies to pen$ing actions
at time of enactment
o Statute shortening the perio$ for ta&ing appeals prospecti"e in
the a#sence of clear legislati"e intent to the contrar( an$ ma(
not #e applie$ to pen$ing procee$ings in %hich 3u$gment has
alrea$( #een ren$ere$ at the time of enactment
#etroactive Statutes
La% %hich creates a ne% o#ligation, imposes a ne% $ut( or
attaches a ne% $isa#ilit( in respect to a transaction alrea$( past
:eme$ial or curati"e statutes as %ell as statutes %hich create ne%
rights are inten$e$ to #e retroacti"e #( their nature an$ $o not
impair contractual or "este$ rights
Penal la%s %hen fa"ora#le to the accuse$
o -asis) foun$e$ on the "er( principles on %hich the right of the
state to punish an$ impose penalt( is #ase$; exception foun$e$
on principles of 3ustice, not on political consi$erations
o Exception 3ustifie$ #( conscience an$ goo$ la%
o Assumption) t%o la%s affecting the lia#ilit( of the accuse$ . one
in force at the time of the commission of the crime an$ the other
enacte$ $uring or after the trial of the criminal action
o Limitations)
/0 Accuse$ a ha#itual $elinquent
10 Later statute expressl( pro"i$es that it shall not appl( to
existing actions or pen$ing cases
20 Accuse$ $isregar$s the later la% an$ in"o&es the prior
statute un$er %hich he %as prosecute$
Proce$ural la%s
o A$3ecti"e la% < prescri#es rules an$ forms of proce$ure of
enforcing rights or o#taining re$ress for their in"asion; rules of
proce$ure #( %hich courts can properl( a$minister 3ustice
o Statutes regulating the proce$ure of the courts applica#le to
actions pen$ing an$ un$etermine$ at the time of their passage .
retroacti"e in that sense an$ to that extent
o As a general rule, no "este$ right ma( attach to, nor arise from,
proce$ural la%s
o An a$ministrati"e rule %hich is interpretati"e of a pre5existing
statute an$ not $eclarati"e of certain rights %ith o#ligations
thereun$er is retroacti"e as of the $ate of the effecti"it( of the
o 8case la%0 Litigants cannot #e permitte$ to choose a forum of
con"enience6 Iuris$iction is impose$ #( la% an$ not #( an( of
the parties to such procee$ings6
o +a( not #e applie$ retroacti"el( to pen$ing actions if expressl(
$eclare$ or #( necessar( implication, impairs "este$ rights, not
feasi#le or %oul$ %or& in3ustice, in"ol"es intricate pro#lems of
$ue process or impairs the in$epen$ence of the courts
!urati"e statutes
o One %hich cures $efects an$ a$$s to the means of enforcing
existing o#ligations
o Inten$e$ to suppl( $efects, a#ri$ge superfluities in existing la%s,
an$ cur# certain e"ils
o Purpose) to gi"e "ali$it( to acts $one that %oul$ ha"e #een
in"ali$ un$er existing la%s, as if existing la%s ha"e #een
complie$ %ith
o !an cure pen$ing actions #ut not that %hich has attaine$ finalit(
o ?%ill result in neither impairment of an( contractual o#ligation,
$istur#ance of an( "este$ right nor #reach of some constitutional
guarant(@ ()rivaldo vs* +,-E(E+)
Police po%er legislations
o Statutes %hich are enacte$ in the exercise of police po%er to
regulate certain acti"ities
o :eason) non5impairment of contractual o#ligations or "este$
rights must (iel$ to the legitimate exercise of the po%er #( the
legislature to prescri#e regulations to promote the health,
morals, peace, e$ucation, goo$ or$er, safet( an$ general %elfare
of the people
o :eser"ation of the essential attri#utes of so"ereign po%er
$eeme$ rea$ into e"er( statute or contract as a postulate of the
legal or$er
Prescription in criminal an$ ci"il cases
o !i"il) statute enacte$ #( legislature as impartial ar#iter #et%een
t%o conten$ing parties; no inten$ment to #e ma$e in fa"or of
either part(; no rights grante$ an$ thus, construction
presumption against no grantor
o !riminal) state is grantor, surren$ering #( act of grace its right
to prosecute; li#erall( construe$ an$ is also retroacti"e if
fa"ora#le to accuse$
'mendment, #evision, !odification and #epeal
!hange or mo$ification, #( a$$ition, $eletion, or alteration, of a
statute %hich sur"i"es in its amen$e$ form
+a( #e express or implie$ amen$ment $one through enactment of
amen$ator( act
Po%er to amen$ an( existing la% inherent in the legislature
o Authorit( part of legislati"e po%er to enact, alter an$ repeal
o S! no authorit( . legislati"e exclusi"e prerogati"e
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Statutory Construction Agpalo
Amen$ment #( implication
o Neither presume$ nor fa"ore$
o Bsuall( sho%n #( a statement in the later act that an( pro"ision
of la% inconsistent there%ith is mo$ifie$ accor$ingl(
o Operates as long as there is an irreconcila#le repugnanc(
#et%een the earlier an$ later la%
o *here a part of a prior statute em#racing the same su#3ect as the
later act ma( not #e enforce$ %ithout nullif(ing the pertinent
pro"ision of the latter . prior act $eeme$ amen$e$ to the extent
of the repugnanc(
Ta&es effect /M $a(s after pu#lication in OG or ne%spaper of
general circulation unless $ifferent $ate is specifie$ therein
!onstruction of amen$ment
o As if the original statute has #een repeale$ an$ a ne% an$
in$epen$ent act in the amen$e$ form ha$ #een a$opte$
o As if the statute has #een originall( enacte$ in its amen$e$ form
o As a continuation of the existing la% an$ not as a ne% enactment
o Shoul$ #e $ifferent from that of original statute since presume$
that legislature %oul$ not ha"e amen$e$ if $i$ not %ant to
change its meaning
o Suppression of excepting clause amounts to %ith$ra%al of the
exemption allo%e$ un$er the original act
General rule) prospecti"e unless contrar( pro"i$e$ or proce$ural
la% 8relating to proce$ure in courts0, at %hich case applica#le to
pen$ing an$ un$etermine$ actions at time of amen$ment
:ights %hich ha"e #ecome "este$ un$er a statute #efore its
amen$ment ma( not #e affecte$ #( such
Effect of amen$ment on 3uris$iction
o Iuris$iction of a court to tr( cases $etermine$ #( the la% in force
at the time the action is institute$ an$ remains %ith the court
until the case is finall( $eci$e$ therein
o Su#sequent statute amen$ing a prior act %ith the effect of
$i"esting the court of 3uris$iction ma( not #e construe$ to
operate to oust 3uris$iction that has alrea$( attache$ un$er the
prior la% else it %ill #e a su#"ersion of the 3u$icial process
o Also applies to quasi53u$icial #o$ies
Amen$ator( act, if complete #( itself, %ill #e consi$ere$ as an
original or in$epen$ent act
*here amen$ator( act is $eclare$ unconstitutional, it is as if the
amen$ment $i$ not exist, an$ the original statute #efore the
attempte$ amen$ment remains unaffecte$ an$ in force
#evision and !odification
Purpose) to restate the existing la%s into one statute, simplif(
complicate$ pro"isions, an$ ma&e the la%s on the su#3ect easil(
Pro#lem) %hat meaning or significance ma( #e attache$ to an( of
the mo$ifications or changes 8insertion or omission of pro"isions,
change in phraseolog(, rearranging of sections0
!onstruction to harmoni,e $ifferent pro"isions
o Presumption) author has maintaine$ a consistent philosoph( or
o !o$e is enacte$ as a single, comprehensi"e statute an$ is to #e
consi$ere$ as such, not as a series of $isconnecte$ articles or
o Irreconcila#le conflictL That %hich is #est in accor$ %ith the
general plan6 No %a( to $etermineL That %hich is later in
ph(sical position, #eing the latest expression of legislati"e %ill
*hat is omitte$ is $eeme$ repeale$ unless pro"i$e$ other%ise
o :eason) re"ision or co$ification, #( its "er( nature an$ purpose,
inten$e$ to #e a complete enactment on the su#3ect an$ an
expression of the %hole la% thereon
o Intent on part of legislature to a#rogate those pro"isions of the
ol$ la%s that are not repro$uce$ in the re"ise$ statute or co$e
o Possi#le onl( if the re"ise$ statute or co$e %as inten$e$ to co"er
the %hole su#3ect to #e a complete an$ perfect s(stem in itself
o Ne% repeals ol$ if it re"ises the %hole su#3ect matter of the ol$,
#oth intent an$ scope e"ince the i$ea of a repeal, clear intention
that ne% is su#stitute of ol$
!on$ensation a necessit( in re"ision E co$ification
o Neither an alteration in phraseolog( nor the omission or a$$ition
of %or$s in the later statute shall #e hel$ necessaril( to alter the
construction of the former acts
!onstrue$ as a continuation of existing la%s
o Presumption) co$ifiers $i$ not inten$ to change the la% as it
formerl( existe$
o :earrangement of sections or parts of statute, #rea&ing up of a
single section into separate sections $oes not necessaril( change
the operation, effect or meaning of the statute unless legislati"e
intent is clear an$ unmista&a#le
Legislature has plenar( po%er to repeal, a#rogate or re"o&e
existing la%s
o Po%er to repeal as complete as po%er to enact
o !annot enact irrepeala#le la%s or limit future legislati"e acts
o S! no po%er to repeal . can onl( promulgate rules of proce$ure
9in$s of repeal)
/0 Total "s6 Partial
T) statute ren$ere$ re"o&e$ completel(
P) lea"es the unaffecte$ portions of the statute in force
10 Express "s6 Implie$
E) $eclaration in a statute that a particular an$ specific la%,
i$entifie$ #( its num#er or title, is repeale$; i$entifies or
$esignates the act or acts that are inten$e$ to #e repeale$
I) all other repeals not express
7ailure to a$$ specific repealing clause in$icates that intent %as
not to repeal an( existing la% unless an irreconcila#le
inconsistenc( an$ repugnanc( exist . falls un$er implie$ repeal
Presumption) legislature &no%s existing la%s so that if a repeal is
inten$e$, proper step is to express it
La%s are repeale$ onl( #( the enactment of su#sequent la%s
o Not repeale$ #( $isuse or customs an$ practice to the contrar(
o iolation or nono#ser"ance not excuse$
o !hange in con$ition an$ circumstances after passage of la%
%hich #rought a#out the statute $oes not operate to repeal prior
:epeal #( implication
o Premise) *here a statute of later $ate clearl( re"eals an
intention on the part of the legislature to a#rogate a prior act on
the su#3ect, that intention must #e gi"en effect6 Intent must #e
clear an$ manifest6
o General rule) Later act is to #e construe$ as a continuation of,
an$ not a su#stitute for, the first act an$ %ill continue so far as
the t%o acts are the same from the time of the first enactment
o Not fa"ore$6 Presumption against inconsistenc( an$ repugnanc(
an$ accor$ingl(, against implie$ repeal6 E"er( effort must #e
use$ to ma&e all acts stan$6 If, #( an( reasona#le construction,
the( can #e reconcile$, the later act %ill not operate as a repeal
of the earlier6
T%o categories of repeal #( implication)
/0 ?-( irreconcila#le inconsistenc(@
*here pro"isions in the t%o acts on the same su#3ect matter
are in an irreconcila#le conflict, the later act to the extent of
the conflict constitutes an implie$ repeal of the earlier one6
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Statutory Construction Agpalo
*hen t%o statutes co"er the same su#3ect matter; clearl(
inconsistent an$ incompati#le %ith each other that the( cannot
#e reconcile$ or harmoni,e$; #oth cannot #e gi"en effect, one
la% cannot #e enforce$ %ithout nullif(ing the other
Shoul$ em#race same su#3ect an$ ha"e same o#3ect
7act that a later enactment ma( relate to the same su#3ect
matter is not of itself sufficient to cause an implie$ repeal6
The ne% statute ma( merel( #e cumulati"e or a continuation
of the ol$ one6 *hat is necessar( is a manifest in$ication of
legislati"e purpose to repeal6
Inconsistenc( ne"er presume$
*hen the later la% nullifies the reason or purpose of the
earlier act, so that the earlier act loses all meaning an$
!ar$inal rule) T%o inconsistent la%s on the same su#3ect
cannot co5exist in one 3uris$iction6 Either the( are reconcile$
or the later la% repeals the prior la%6
(eges posteriors priores contrarias abrogant < a later la%
repeals a prior la% on the same su#3ect %hich is repugnant
10 ?-( re"ision or co$ification of the former la%s@
If the later act co"ers the %hole su#3ect of the earlier one an$
is clearl( inten$e$ as a su#stitute, it %ill operate to repeal the
earlier la%6
Onl( possi#le if the re"ise$ statute or co$e %as inten$e$ to
co"er the %hole su#3ect to #e a complete an$ perfect s(stem
in itself
A su#sequent statute is $eeme$ to repeal a prior la% if the
former re"ises the %hole su#3ect matter of the former statute6
*hen #oth intent an$ scope clearl( e"ince the i$ea of a
repeal, all parts omitte$ from the re"ise$ act are $eeme$
*here a ne% statute is inten$e$ to furnish the exclusi"e rule
on a certain su#3ect
Other forms of implie$ repeal
o +ost po%erful implication of repeal is that %hich arises %hen
the later of t%o la%s is expresse$ in the form of a uni"ersal
o :epealing effects of affirmati"eEnegati"e statutes
/0 A) $oes not implie$l( repeal prior la% unless intention to
effect repeal is manifest
10 N) repeals all conflicting pro"isions unless contrar(
intention $isclose$
o *here something is enacte$ in general terms an$ after%ar$s
another is passe$ on the same su#3ect intro$ucing special
con$itions or restrictions, former statute regar$ing the matter
co"ere$ #( the su#sequent act consi$ere$ repeale$ #(
o Enactment of a statute on a su#3ect %hose purpose or o#3ect is
$iametricall( oppose$ to that of an earlier la% on the same
su#3ect, there#( $epri"ing it of its reason for #eing, prior la%
repeale$ #( implication
General repealing pro"ision < clause %hich pre$icates the inten$e$
repeal un$er the con$ition that a su#stantial conflict must #e foun$
on existing an$ prior acts of the same su#3ect matter; intent not to
repeal an( existing la% unless an irreconcila#le inconsistenc( an$
repugnanc( exists
o Significance) presence in$icates legislati"e intent to repeal all
prior inconsistent la%s on the su#3ect matter, e"en if prior la% is
a special la% unless the general la% contains a sa"ing clause
o Later general la% %ill or$inaril( not repeal a prior special la%
on the same su#3ect as special la% is generall( regar$e$ as an
:epeals of statutes #( implication are not fa"ore$6 Presumption
against inconsistenc( an$ repugnanc(6 :epeals #( implication %ill
not #e $ecree$ unless it is manifest that the legislature so inten$e$6
E"er( effort must #e use$ to ma&e all acts stan$6 If, #( an(
reasona#le construction, the( can #e reconcile$, the later act %ill
not operate as a repeal of the earlier6
As #et%een t%o la%s on same su#3ect matter, that %hich is passe$
later pre"ails since it is the latest expression of legislati"e %ill
o Applies e"en if the later act is ma$e to ta&e effect ahea$ of the
earlier la%
o Point of contention is passage, not effecti"it(
o Presumption) legislature &ne% ol$er la% an$ inten$e$ to change
General la% usuall( $oes not repeal prior special la% unless
legislature inten$e$ to $o so
o Presumption against implie$ repeal e"en though the terms of the
general act are #roa$ enough to inclu$e the matter co"ere$ #(
the special statute
o .eneralia specialibus non derogant < general la% $oes not
nullif( a specific or special la%
o General la% (iel$s to the special la% in the specific an$
particular su#3ect em#race$ in the latter, irrespecti"e of the $ate
of passage
o :eason) special la% e"inces the legislati"e intent more clearl(
than the general statute
o Special laterL Hualification of the general one6 General laterL
Special la% exception to its terms6
Special or general la% repeals the other
o *here the later act is a special la%, there is al%a(s a partial
repeal of the general la% to the extent of the repugnanc( or
o General la% %hen legislati"e intent is clear 8general repealing
clause; language %oul$ #e useless if special la% not repeale$ nor
mo$ifie$; so #roa$ in its terms an$ so clear an$ explicit in its
%or$s as to sho% that it inten$e$ to co"er the %hole su#3ect an$
$isplace the prior statute, etc60
o No prohi#ition against the repeal e"en #( implication of a
special or specific act #( a general or #roa$ la%, 3ust not fa"ore$
Example) A charter must (iel$ to the constitution an$ general
la%s of the state6 *hen a charter is enacte$, it is $eeme$ to
incorporate therein the general la%s affecting local go"ernments6
A chartere$ cit( is not an in$epen$ent so"ereignt( although its
charter remains supreme in all matters not purel( local6
Effects of repeal
o :en$ers statute inoperati"e as of the $ate the repealing act ta&es
o *hat a repeal $oes NOT $o)
/0 Statute %as in"ali$ from $ate of its enactment
10 Bn$o the consequences of the operation of the statute %hile in
20 :en$ers illegal %hat un$er the repeale$ act is legal or "ice "ersa
Effect on 3uris$iction
o :epeal or expiration of statute granting 3uris$iction $oes not
ma&e $ecision su#sequentl( ren$ere$ in actions pen$ing
a$3u$ication null an$ "oi$ for %ant of authorit( unless other%ise
o !riminal cases) Iuris$iction pre"iousl( acquire$ cannot #e
ouste$ unless the contrar( is pro"i$e$, express prohi#itor(
%or$s are use$, or the criminal la% "iolate$ is itself repeale$
Effect on actions, pen$ing or other%ise
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Statutory Construction Agpalo
o General rule) repeal of a statute $efeats all actions an$
procee$ings #ase$ on such statute, inclu$ing those still pen$ing
o Appellate court %ill $ispose of a question accor$ing to the la%
pre"ailing at the time of $isposition, not accor$ing to la%
pre"ailing at the time the appeale$ 3u$gment %as ren$ere$
Effect on "este$ rights
o :epeal of statute $oes not $estro( or impair rights that accrue$
or "este$ un$er ol$ la% then in force
o !onstitution for#i$s state from impairing "este$ rights or
o#ligations of contract #( enacting or repealing statutes except
in the legitimate exercise of police po%er
o *here a statute gi"es an appellant right to appeal from a$"erse
$ecision, repeal of such statute after appeal has #een perfecte$
%ill not $estro( his right to prosecute the appeal nor $epri"e the
appellate court of the authorit( to $eci$e the appeale$ case
Effect of repeal of tax la%s
o :epeal $oes not preclu$e collection of taxes assesse$ un$er the
ol$ la% #efore it %as repeale$, unless other%ise pro"i$e$
o General rule) :epeal prospecti"e
Effect of repeal an$ reenactment
o :eenactment neutrali,es repeal an$ continues la% in force
%ithout interruption
o Simultaneous repeal an$ reenactment of statute $oes not affect
rights an$ lia#ilities accrue$ un$er original statute
o !riminal cases) %hen reenactment of repeale$ la% not
simultaneous 8continuit( #ro&en0, repeal $epri"es court of its
3uris$iction o"er "iolations of the ol$ la% prior to its repeal
Effect of repeal of penal la%s
o *hen repeal a#solute such that crime no longer exists or %here
the repealing statute %holl( fails to penali,e the acts %hich
constitute$ the offense in the repeale$ la%, court loses
3uris$iction o"er "iolations of repeale$ la%
o :eason) repeal a legislati"e act of ren$ering legal %hat is
pre"iousl( $ecree$ as illegal
o Exceptions)
/0 *here the repealing act reenacts the statute an$ penali,es the
same act pre"iousl( penali,e$ un$er the repeale$ la%
10 *here the repealing act contains a sa"ing clause pro"i$ing that
pen$ing actions shall not #e affecte$
:epeal "s6 Expiration of la% . their effects
o A#solute :epeal) crime is o#literate$, stigma of con"iction for
"iolation of penal la% #efore its repeal erase$
o Expiration of criminal statute #( its o%n force
Effect of repeal of municipal charter
o General rule) :epeal of a charter $estro(s all offices un$er it an$
puts an en$ to the functions of the incum#ents
Effect of repeal or nullit( of repealing la%
o *hen a la% %hich expressl( repeals a prior la% is itself
repeale$, the la% first repeale$ shall not there#( #e re"i"e$,
unless expressl( so pro"i$e$6
o *here a la% %hich repeals a prior la% #( implication is
repeale$, the prior la% is re"i"e$ unless the language of the
repealing statute pro"i$es other%ise6
o *here a repealing statute is $eclare$ unconstitutional, it %ill
ha"e no effect of repealing the former statute %hich %ill
continue to remain in force6
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