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SECONDDIVISION

KAYPRODUCTS,INC.and/orG.R.No.162472
KAYLEE,
Petitioners,
Present:
PUNO,J.,Chairman,
versusAUSTRIAMARTINEZ,
CALLEJO,SR.,
TINGA,and
CHICONAZARIO,JJ.
HONORABLECOURTOF
APPEALS,KAYPRODUCTS
EMPLOYEESUNION,MYRNA
ABILA,FLORDELIZAPromulgated:
MORANTEandFEREGIDOR,
Respondents.July28,2005

xx

DECISION

CALLEJO,SR.,J.:

BeforeusisapetitionforreviewoncertiorariunderRule45oftheRulesofCourtofthe
[1]
Decision oftheCourtofAppeals(CA)inCAG.R.SPNo.73028anditsresolutiondenying
themotionforreconsiderationofitsdecisionbypetitionersKayProducts,Incorporated(KPI)and
KayLee.

TheAntecedents
TheAntecedents

The employees of KPI had a meeting for the purpose of forming a union within their
workplace. Among those in attendance were Myrna Abila, Flordeliza Morante, Fe Regidor,
RowenaEscuadroandJeofreydelValle,whowereemployedbyKPIasfactorysewersinJuneto
August1999.

WhenthemanagementofKPIgotwindoftheemployeesplantoformaunion,itcalleda
meeting to announce that the said employees were to be transferred to an employment agency
with which it had a manpower contract, the Gerrico Resources & Manpower Services, Inc.
[2]
(GRMSI).ThroughaMemorandum datedJuly13,2000,KPI,throughitspresident,Mr.Kay
Y.Lee,promisedthattheemployeeswouldreceivebiggerandbetterbenefitsunderGRMSIas
regular employees thereof. On July 14, 2000, KPI directed all employees concerned to sign
resignationletterspreparatorytotheiremploymentwithGRMSI.Thus,theemployeessubmitted
handwrittenlettersofresignation,andKPItookcustodyoftheiridentificationcards.

The employees continued to report for work in the KPI factory but received less
[3]
wages/salaries. On July 31, 2000, KPI issued a Memorandum to the employees, stating that
GRMSI had been dissolved and that there was a need for them to sign separate contracts with
RCVJ,anothercorporationwithwhichKPIhadamanpowercontract.
This time, some employees, includingAbila, Morante, Regidor, Escuadro and Del Valle,
refusedtosignanycontractwithRCVJ.

Inthemeantime,theemployeesofKPIwereabletoorganizetheirunion,theKayProducts
Employees Union, and affiliated themselves to the Philippine Transport & General Workers
[4]
Organization(PTGWO)onJuly25,2000.

On August 25, 2000, seventythree (73) employees, together with the Kay Products
On August 25, 2000, seventythree (73) employees, together with the Kay Products
[5]
EmployeesUnionPTGWO,filedaComplaint withRegionalArbitrationBranchNo.IVofthe
Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) against the petitioners. The employees claimed
that the petitioners were guilty of unfair labor practice (ULP), underpayment of salaries and
service incentive leave pay, and failure to classify them as regular employees. The case was
docketedasNLRCCaseNo.RABIV81282900L.

OnSeptember4,2000,theemployeeswereorderedtotakeatwoweekleavefromwork
withoutpay.Theemployeescomplained.Whentheytriedtoreportforworkafterthetwoweek
period, they were refused entry and were told that they had ceased to be KPI employees since
theyhadresigneduponagreeingtobeemployedbyGRMSI.

OnOctober18,2000,theemployeesandtheirunionamendedtheircomplaint(docketedas
[6]
NLRC Case No. RABIV81282900L) to illegal dismissal. Only Abila, Morante, Regidor,
EscuadroandDelValle,whowereabletosignandverifytheamendedcomplaint,remainedas
complainants.

[7]
In their position paper, the complainants alleged, inter alia, that they were illegally
dismissedtheirdismissalwasnotgroundedonanyjustandauthorizedcauseunderthelaw,and
theyweredeprivedoftheirrighttodueprocess.Theyalsoassertedthatininterferingwiththeir
righttoselforganizationbydeceitfullytransferringthemtoanemploymentagency,KPIthereby
engagedinULP.Theyclaimedthatsuchactswereinviolationoftheprinciplesenunciatedunder
the Labor Code of the Philippines. The complainants further contended that they were coerced
andintimidatedintosigninglettersofresignation.Moreover,theywereentitledtomoneyclaims,
particularly 13th month pay, service incentive leave pay, vacation and sick leave pay from the
timeoftheirillegaldismissaluntiltheirreinstatement.

Ontheotherhand,thepetitionersdeniedthematerialallegationsofthecomplainants,and
maintainedthatthelattervoluntarilyresignedfromtheirwork.Theyassertedthatasidefromthe
typewrittenresignationletter,thecomplainantsalsowroteotherlettersintheirownhandwriting.
TheypointedoutthatthecomplainantsvoluntarilysecuredtheirclearancesfromKPI,transferred
toRCVJ,andneverwentbacktowork.KPIassertedthatit
neverinterferedwithitsworkersrighttoselforganizationoranyoftheirplanstoformanyunion.
Hence, in view of their voluntary resignations, the complainants were not entitled to
reinstatement,backwages,moralandexemplarydamages,andattorneysfees.

[8]
OnSeptember28,2001,theLaborArbiter rendered his decision. The decretal portion
readsasfollows:

WHEREFORE,premisesconsidered,judgmentisherebyrendereddismissingcomplainants
charge for illegal dismissal and for ULP for lack of merit. However, in view of their implied
admission of complainants entitlement thereto, respondent is hereby ordered to pay the
corresponding13thmonthpayandserviceincentiveleavepayduethecomplainantsherein.

[9]
SOORDERED.

The Labor Arbiter declared that the complainants wrote their resignation letters in their
ownhand,andfoundnoshowingofforceorintimidationinsodoing.Hedeclaredthatifthere
was,indeed,forceorintimidation,thecomplainantsoughttohavemadetheirrealsentimentsor
opposition thereto on record by writing under protest, with reservations, or other words to that
effect either below, beside, or somewhere near their signatures. Moreover, the fact that the
contentsoftheirresignationlettersweredictatedwouldnotjustifytheconclusionthattheyhad
tenderedtheirresignationagainsttheirwill.Onthecontrary,theLaborArbiterobservedthatthis
wasmoreconvenientonthepartoftheparties.

On May 31, 2002, the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) Third Division
[10]
rendereditsDecision affirmingtheLaborArbitersdecisionanddismissingtheappealforlack
[10]
rendereditsDecision affirmingtheLaborArbitersdecisionanddismissingtheappealforlack
ofmerit:

WHEREFORE, premises considered, the appeal from the Decision dated September 28,
2001isherebyDISMISSEDforlackofmeritandtheDecisionAFFIRMED.

[11]
SOORDERED.

The NLRC declared that the complainants act of submitting resignation letters and
accomplishing their respective clearances from KPI negated involuntariness. The NLRC also
notedsomeinconsistenciesintheamendedcomplaintandthepositionpaperofthecomplainants,
viz.:

Complainantsallegedthattheystillworkedforseveralmonthswithrespondentasregular
employees thereof even after the execution of their resignation letter. This allegation of
complainantsdeservesscantconsideration.Recordsshowthatcomplainant[s]filedtheinstantcase
onAugust25,2000.Itisworthstressingthatcomplainant[s]failedtoindicateintheircomplaint
the date they were allegedly dismissed. (Records, p. 1) [T]hen, in their amended complaint
(Records, p. 12) and position paper (Records, p. 18), they claimed that they were dismissed on
September4,2000.IfitisreallytruethattheyweredismissedonSeptember4,2000,howcome
they charged respondents of illegal dismissal on August 25, 2000[?] These apparent
[12]
inconsistenciesofcomplainantsonlygoes(sic)toshowtheweaknessoftheirallegations.

[13]
Amotionforreconsiderationwasfiled,whichwasdeniedforlackofmerit.

Private respondents Myrna Abila, Flordeliza Morante and Fe Regidor, thereafter, filed a
petitionforcertiorariwiththeCA,assailingthedecision
and resolution of the NLRC. The appellate court rendered judgment on December 16, 2003,
reversingthedecisionoftheNLRC.Thefalloofthedecisionreads:

WHEREFORE,judgmentisherebyrendered:

(1)REVERSINGtheassailedresolutionsofpublicrespondentwithrespecttoitsfindings
thatpetitionerswerenotillegallydismissedand,


(2)AFFIRMING the assailed resolutions of public respondent NLRC with respect to the
petitionerschargeforunfairlaborpractices.


Withoutcostsinthisinstance.

[14]
SOORDERED.

Theappellatecourtruledthattheprivaterespondentswereregularemployees,sincethey
wereperformingactivitiesnormallynecessaryordesirableintheusualbusinessortradeofKPI
formorethanayearuntiltheirseverancefromworkonSeptember4,2000.TheCAdeclaredthat
asregularemployees,theirservicescouldonlybeterminatedforjustandauthorizedcausesunder
theLaborCode,asamended.TheemployeestransfertoanemploymentagencyputKPIsmotive
inquestionandgavecredencetotheallegationthattheemployeeshadbeenillegallyterminated
ordismissed.

Anentthechargeofunfairlaborpractice,theCAabsolvedtherespondentthereinofsaid
charge.

TheKPIfiledamotionforthereconsiderationoftheabovedecision,whichtheappellate
[15]
courtdenied,astheargumentsinsupportthereofhadbeendulyaddressedandresolvedbyit.

Inthepresentrecourse,petitionersascribetotheCAthefollowingaserrors:

I
THE PUBLIC RESPONDENT COMMITTED A SERIOUS ERROR OF LAW IN HOLDING
PRIVATE RESPONDENTS RESIGNATIONS NOT VOLUNTARY DESPITE THEIR
CONFIRMATIONINTHEIROWNHANDWRITING.

II
THEPUBLICRESPONDENTCOMMITTEDASERIOUSERROROFLAWINDECLARING
[16]
THATPRIVATERESPONDENTSDISMISSALWASILLEGAL.

The petitioners reiterated their claim that the private respondents were not coerced,
threatened, or intimidated into filing their resignation letters. They claim that the CA erred in
findingthatthepetitionersforcedorintimidatedtheprivaterespondentsintosigningblanksheets
findingthatthepetitionersforcedorintimidatedtheprivaterespondentsintosigningblanksheets
ofpaperwhichwereusedastheirresignationletters.Thepetitionerscontendthatsuchfindingis
not supported by any evidence. They rely on the Labor Arbiters conclusion that if the private
respondents had really been forced to render their resignation, they should have written under
protest, with reservations or other words to that effect near their signatures to show their real
sentimentsoropposition.Moreover,thefactthattheprivate
respondentswaitedforone(1)monthandtwelve(12)days,beforefilingtheircomplaintwiththe
DOLE,castsdoubtontheintegrityoftheirposition.

Anentthesecondissue,thepetitionersarguethattheCAerredindeclaringthattheprivate
respondentshadbeenillegallydismissed,andthattherewasnothingtosupportsuchconclusion.
They contend that the appellate court disregarded the findings of the Labor Arbiter and the
NLRC,andinsteadshouldhaveaccordedrespectandfinalitytosuchfindings,supportedasthey
werebysubstantialevidence.ThepetitionerscitedthecasesofPanPacificIndustrialSalesCo.,
[17] [18] [19]
Inc. v. NLRC, Aboitiz Shipping Corporation v. Dela Serna and Rabago v. NLRC,
where this Court held that findings of administrative agencies are accorded respect and even
finality if they are supported by substantial evidence. Thus, the petitioners pray that the CA
decision be reversed and set aside, and the decisions of the Labor Arbiter and the NLRC
reinstated.

Ontheotherhand,theprivaterespondentsmaintainthattheywereintimidatedandcoerced
intosigningtheirrespectiveresignationlettersandclearances,andthatthefindingsoftheLabor
ArbiterandtheNLRCwerebasedonflimsygrounds.Theprivaterespondentsclaimthattheyhad
to secure clearances as they were needed for the release of whatever benefits due them. They
maintainthattheappellatecourtdidnoterrinitsfindingthattheywereillegallydismissed.

Thepetitionisbereftofmerit.


Preliminarily,theremedyresortedtobythepetitionersisapetitionforreviewunderRule
45oftheRulesofCourt,whichallowsonlyquestionsoflaw.Findingsoffactofthelowercourts
areconclusive,exceptinthefollowinginstances:(1)whenthefindingsaregroundedentirelyon
speculation, surmises, or conjectures (2) when the inference made is manifestly mistaken,
absurd,orimpossible(3)whenthereisgraveabuseofdiscretion(4)whenthejudgmentisbased
onamisapprehensionoffacts(5)whenthefindingsoffactareconflicting(6)wheninmaking
its findings the CA went beyond the issues of the case, or its findings are contrary to the
admissionsofboththeappellantandtheappellee(7)whenthefindingsarecontrarytothoseof
the trial court (8) when the findings are conclusions without citation of specific evidence on
whichtheyarebased(9)whenthefactssetforthinthepetitionaswellasinthepetitionersmain
and reply briefs are not disputed by the respondents and (10) when the findings of fact are
[20]
premisedonthesupposedabsenceofevidenceandcontradictedbytheevidenceonrecord.

In the present case, the LaborArbiter and the NLRC ruled that the private respondents
voluntarily resigned their employment with petitioner KPI, in contrast to the appellate courts
rulingthattheydidnot.ThereisthusaneedfortheCourttoascertainwhichofthefindingsand
conclusionsareinaccordwiththeevidenceonrecordandthelaw.

Onthefirstissue,weaffirmtheencompassingandperceptiverulingoftheappellatecourt:

Tobestressedinthefundamentalpremisethatpetitionersareregularemployeesofprivate
respondents, having been performing activities which are normally necessary or desirable in the
usual business or trade of the employer for more than a year already, until their severance from
work on September 4, 2000. Undeniably, petitioners were regular employees at the time they
allegedlyvoluntarilyresignedonJuly14,2000.Assuchregularemployees,theLaborCodegrants
petitionerssecurityoftenure,whichessentiallymeansthattheiremployercannotterminatetheir
servicesexceptforjustandauthorizedcauses,asprovidedforundertheLaborCode.Viewedin
this light, private respondents act or action in transferring petitioners to a manpower agency
(Gerrico Resources then later on to RCVJ) with the promise that they would receive the same

benefits as regular employees, puts in question private respondents real motive. If anything, it
gives currency to the belief that petitioners had been illegally terminated or dismissed from
employment.

Turningnowtothequestionofthevoluntarinessoftheresignationletters:Weareinclined
toagreewiththepetitionersthattheywerecoerced,threatenedorintimidatedintosigningblank
sheetsofpaperwhichmaterializedintoresignationletters,thecontentsofwhichweredictatedby
sheetsofpaperwhichmaterializedintoresignationletters,thecontentsofwhichweredictatedby
theDirectorandPersonnelManageroftherespondentcompany.Fortous,itisinconceivablethata
workerwhohasalreadyattainedaregularstatusinhisemploymentwouldopttobetransferredto
another employment agency, there to start work anew work that would relegate him to a mere
casual laborer or employee. Obviously, petitioners were not given any other choice by
management,buttoagreetotheirtransfertoGerricoResources,lesttheylosetheironlymeansof
livelihood. Considering that petitioners are ordinary sewers of respondent company, the fear of
losingtheirjobscannotbutbeaserious,legitimateconcern.InRance,etal.v.NLRC,itwasheld
that when a person has no property, his job may possibly be his only possession or means of
livelihood. Therefore, he should be protected against any arbitrary deprivation of his job. In the
samespirit,Art.280oftheLaborCodeconstruessecurityoftenureasmeaningthattheemployer
shallnotterminatetheservicesofanemployeeexceptforajustcauseorwhenauthorizedbythe
[21]
Code.


Thefactthatpetitionersinthiscasefailedtoindicateintheirresignationlettersthephrase
underprotestorwithreservationsisofnomoment.Tobestressedanewisthefactthatpetitioners
wereordinaryfactoryworkerswhocouldnotandshouldnotbeexpectedtoknowthelegalimport
orsignificanceofsomesuchphraseasunderprotestorwithreservations.

Additionally,privaterespondentsclaimthatpetitionersvoluntarilyresignedisbeliedbythe
fact that the latter immediately filed a complaint for regularization with the NLRC upon their
supposed transfer to the Gerrico Resources. We note that while petitioners were allegedly
employedwithGerricoResources,theycontinuedworkingwithrespondentcompanyandwithin
thepremisesofrespondentcompanyforthatmatter.Hence,itcameasnosurprisethatwhenthey
were disallowed entry into the premises of respondent company on September 4, 2000, they
amendedtheircomplainttooneofillegaldismissal.Therefore,thereissomethingaskewinpublic
respondentsratiocinationthat

Complainants alleged that they still worked for several months with
respondent as regular employees thereof even after the execution of their
resignation letter[s]. This allegation of complainants deserves scant consideration.
RecordsshowthatcomplainantfiledtheinstantcaseonAugust25,2000.Itisworth
stressing that complainant failed to indicate in their complaint the date they were
allegedlydismissed.(Records,p.1)Then,intheiramendedcomplaint(Records,p.
12)andpositionpaper(Records,p.18),theyclaimedthattheyweredismissedon
September 4, 2000. If it is really true that they were dismissed on September 4,
2000, how come they charged respondents of illegal dismissal on August 25,
2000[?]Theseapparentinconsistenciesofcomplainantsonlygoes(sic)toshowthe
weaknessoftheirallegations.xxx(underscoringsupplied)

For, stock can be taken of the fact that the complaint filed on August 25, 2000 was for
regularization, while that of September 4, 2000 was for illegal dismissal and reinstatement.
Notably, no date was indicated in the space provided for Date Dismissed in the complaint for
August 25, 2000, precisely because petitioners were not yet dismissed then rather, they were
merelytransferredtoGerricoResourcesascontractualworkers.

InMolaveToursv.NLRC,resignationhasbeendefinedasthevoluntaryactofanemployee
who finds himself in a situation where he believes that personal reasons cannot be sacrificed in
favoroftheexigencyoftheservice,thenhehasnootherchoicebuttodisassociatehimselffrom
his employment. In the context of Section II, Rule XIV, Book V of the Revised Rules
Implementing the Labor Code, resignation is a formal pronouncement or relinquishment of an
office. It must be made with the deliberate animus or intention of relinquishing the office
accompaniedbyanactofrelinquishment.Inthesamecase,itwasalsoheldthatthevoluntariness
ofaresignationisnegatedbythefilingofacomplaintforillegaldismissal.DeclaredtheCourt:

The fact that private respondent immediately filed a complaint for illegal
dismissal against petitioner and repudiated his alleged resignation completely
negated petitioners claim that respondent Bolocon voluntarily resigned. By
vigorouslypursuingthelitigationofhisactionagainstpetitioner,privaterespondent
clearlymanifestedthathehasnointentionofrelinquishinghisemployment,which
act is wholly incompatible to petitioners assertion that he voluntarily resigned.
Neither was petitioner able to discharge the burden of proving that respondent
Bolocons employment was validly terminated. Other than the mute words of
Bolocons alleged letter of resignation, the rest of petitioners evidence failed to
establish that Bolocon, indeed, voluntarily resigned. Worse, petitioner failed to
refute private respondents allegation of force and intimidation in the execution of
the letter of resignation by opting not to present the testimony of its personnel
managerwhocouldhavecontradictedBoloconsversionofwhatactuallytranspired.
[22]

The CA was correct in declaring that the private respondents had attained the status of
regularemployeesofpetitionerKPI.Itmustbestressedthatatthetimeoftheirdismissal,they
hadbeenworkingforthepetitionersformorethanone(1)year.However,theCAfailedtorule
onwhethertheprivaterespondentsshouldbereinstatedandpaidbackwagesandothermonetary
benefits.

While the actual regularization of these employees entails the mechanical act of issuing
regular appointment papers and compliance with such other operating procedures as may be
adoptedbytheemployer,itismoreinkeepingwiththeintentandspiritofthelawtorulethatthe
statusofregularemploymentattachestothecasualworkeronthedayimmediatelyaftertheend
ofhisfirstyearofservice.Toruleotherwise,andtoinsteadmaketheirregularizationdependent
onthehappeningofsomecontingencyorthefulfillmentofcertainrequirements,istoimposea
[23]
burdenontheemployeewhichisnotsanctionedbylaw.

Article280oftheLaborCode,asamended,providesasfollows:

Art. 280. Regular and Casual Employment. The provisions of written agreement to the
contrarynotwithstandingandregardlessoftheoralagreementoftheparties,anemploymentshall
be deemed to be regular where the employee has been engaged to perform activities which are
usually necessary or desirable in the usual business or trade of the employer, except where the
employmenthasbeenfixedforaspecificprojectorundertakingthecompletionorterminationof
whichhasbeendeterminedatthetimeoftheengagementoftheemployeeorwheretheworkor
servicestobeperformedisseasonalinnatureandtheemploymentisforthedurationoftheseason.


An employment shall be deemed to be casual if it is not covered by the preceding
paragraph:Provided,That,anyemployeewhohasrenderedatleastoneyearofservice,whether
suchserviceiscontinuous or broken, shall be considered a regular employeewithrespecttothe
activityinwhichheisemployedandhisemploymentshallcontinuewhilesuchactivityexists.

As regular employees, the private respondents are entitled to security of tenure provided
underthelaborlawsandmayonlybevalidlyterminatedfromserviceuponcompliancewiththe
legal requisites for dismissal and considering that they were illegally dismissed, the private
respondents should be reinstated, in accordance with the provision of the Labor Code, as
amended,particularlyArticle279,towit:

Article 279. Security of Tenure. In cases of regular employment, the employer shall not
terminatetheservicesofanemployeeexceptforajustcauseorwhenauthorizedbythisTitle.An
employeewhoisunjustlydismissedfromworkshallbeentitledtoreinstatement without loss of
seniorityrightsandotherprivilegesandtohisfullbackwages,inclusiveofallowances,andtohis
otherbenefitsortheirmonetaryequivalentcomputedfromthetimehiscompensationwaswithheld
[24]
fromhimuptothetimeofhisactualreinstatement.

Thus, the said provision provides that illegally dismissed employees are entitled to
backwagesplusotherbenefitscomputedfromthetimecompensationwaswithhelduptothetime
ofactualreinstatement.Anillegallydismissedemployeewho,incontemplationofthelaw,never
lefthisoffice,shouldbegrantedthecompensationwhichrightfullybelongstohim
[25]
from the moment he was unduly deprived of it up to the time it was restored to him the
backwages to be awarded should not be diminished or reduced by earnings derived by the
[26]
illegallydismissedemployeeelsewhereduringthetermofhisillegaldismissal.

IntheiramendedcomplaintfiledwiththeDOLE,theprivaterespondentsprayedformoral
and exemplary damages, among others, but the CA failed to award the same. This Court has
consistentlyaccordedtheworkingclassarighttorecoverdamagesfordismissalstaintedwithbad
faith.TheawardofsuchdamagesisbasednotontheLaborCodebutonArticle2220oftheCivil
[27]
Code. Indeed,moraldamagesarerecoverablewhenthedismissalofanemployeeisattended
bybadfaithorfraudorconstitutesanactoppressivetolabor,orisdoneinamannercontraryto
goodmorals,goodcustomsorpublicpolicy.Exemplarydamagesmaybeawardedifthedismissal
[28]
iseffectedinawanton,oppressiveormalevolentmanner. Badfaithonthepartofpetitioners
maybegleanedfromthefactthattheytransferredtheprivaterespondentstotwo(2)employment
agenciesjustsotheycouldevadetheirlegalresponsibilityasemployerstoaccordthemthestatus
andbenefitsofregularemployeesundertheLaborCode.Thedismissal,nodoubt,waseffectedin
a wanton, oppressive or malevolent manner as the private respondents were deprived of due
process.Thus,theamountofP10,000.00asmoraldamagesandP5,000.00asexemplarydamages
[29]
areherebyawardedtoeachprivaterespondent.

PetitionerKayLee,asthepresident,activelymanagedthebusinessofKPI.Infact,shewas
theonewhodecidedtheprivaterespondentstransfertotheemploymentagencies,andsignedthe
memorandaorderingsuchtransfer,inbadfaith,asearlierdiscussed.Inlaborcases,particularly,
corporate directors and officers are solidarily liable with the corporation for the termination of
[30]
employmentofcorporateemployeesdonewithmaliceorinbadfaith. Infact,inNaguiat v.
[31]
NLRC, theCourtheldthatthepresidentofacorporation,whoactivelymanagesthebusiness,
falls within the meaning of an employer as contemplated by the Labor Code, and may be held
jointly and severally liable for the obligations of the corporation to its dismissed employees.
Thus, in the present case, petitioners Kay Lee and KPI are jointly and severally liable for the
lattersobligationstotheprivaterespondents.

INVIEWOFTHEFOREGOINGDISQUISITIONS,thepetitionisherebyDENIED.
The Court of Appeals Decision and Resolution in CAG.R. SP No. 73028 are hereby
AFFIRMED WITH MODIFICATION. Petitioners Kay Products, Inc. and Kay Lee are
ORDERED to reinstate private respondents Myrna Abila, Flordeliza Morante and Fe Regidor,
andtopay,jointlyandseverally,theirfullbackwageswithoutdeductionsfromthe
timeofdismissaltoactualreinstatementifreinstatementisnolongerpracticableorfeasible,in
lieuthereof,topay,jointlyandseverally,separationpayofone(1)monthsalaryforeveryyearof
theiremployment,withafractionofatleastsix(6)monthsbeingconsideredasone(1)year.In
additionthereto,petitionersarealsoherebyordered,jointlyandseverally,topaytheamountof
Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) as moral damages and Five Thousand Pesos (P5,000.00) as
exemplarydamagestoeachoftheprivaterespondents.

SOORDERED.


ROMEOJ.CALLEJO,SR.
AssociateJustice

WECONCUR:

REYNATOS.PUNO
AssociateJustice
Chairman

MA.ALICIAAUSTRIAMARTINEZDANTEO.TINGA
AssociateJusticeAssociateJustice

MINITAV.CHICONAZARIO
AssociateJustice


ATTESTATION

IattestthattheconclusionsintheaboveDecisionwerereachedinconsultationbeforethecase
wasassignedtothewriteroftheopinionoftheCourtsDivision.

REYNATOS.PUNO
AssociateJustice
Chairman,SecondDivision

CERTIFICATION

Pursuant to Section 13, Article VIII of the Constitution, and the Division Chairmans
Attestation, it is hereby certified that the conclusions in the above decision were reached in
consultationbeforethecasewasassignedtothewriteroftheopinionoftheCourtsDivision.

HILARIOG.DAVIDE,JR.
ChiefJustice

[1]
PennedbyAssociateJusticeRenatoC.Dacudao,withPresidingJusticeCancioC.Garcia(nowanAssociateJusticeoftheSupreme
Court)andAssociateJusticeDaniloB.Pine,concurring.
[2]
Rollo,p.63.
[3]
Id.at64.
[4]
CARollo,p.46.
[5]
Id.at31.
[6]
CARollo,p.33.
[7]
Rollo,p.52.

[8]
LaborArbiterWaldoEmersonR.Gan.
[9]
Rollo,pp.7879.
[10]
PennedbyPresidingCommissionerLourdesC.Javier,withCommissionersIreneoB.BernardoandTitoF.Genilo,concurring
Rollo,pp.8995.
[11]
Rollo,p.94.
[12]
Id.at93.
[13]
Id.at96.
[14]
CARollo,pp.147148.
CARollo,pp.147148.
[15]
CARollo,p.167.
[16]
Rollo,p.10.
[17]
G.R.No.96191,4March1991,194SCRA633.
[18]
G.R.No.88538,25July1991,199SCRA568.
[19]
G.R.No.82868,5August1991,200SCRA158.
[20]
Sta.Mariav.CourtofAppeals,G.R.No.127549,28January1998,285SCRA351.
[21]
Rollo,pp.3233.
[22]
Rollo,pp.3435.
[23]
KimberlyIndependentLaborUnionforSolidarity,ActivismAndNationalismOrganizedLaborAssociationInLineIndustriesand
Agriculturev.Drilon,G.R.No.77629,9May1990,185SCRA190.
[24]
Section34ofRepublicActNo.6715.(Emphasissupplied)
[25]
Buhainv.CourtofAppeals,433Phil.94(2002).
[26]
Id.at104,citingBustamantev.NationalLaborRelationsCommission,265SCRA61(1996).
[27]
SeeCruzv.NationalLaborRelationsCommission,G.R.No.116384,7February2000,324SCRA770.
[28]
Lopezv.NationalLaborRelationsCommission,G.R.No.124548,8October1998,297SCRA508.
[29]
Cruzv.NationalLaborRelationsCommission,supra.
[30]
Uichicov.NationalLaborRelationsCommission,G.R.No.121434,2June1997,273SCRA35.
[31]
G.R.No.116123,13March1997,269SCRA564.