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MANUEL A. RAMOS vs.

THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS and DOMINGO RAMOS

174 SCRA 690 (1989)

FACTS:

Domingo Ramos authorized his brother Manuel to sell his share of lands owned by them in common with
their other brothers and sisters. Manuel did. Later, Domingo revoked the power of attorney and demanded
an accounting from Manuel. Manuel refused. Domingo then filed a complaint with the Punong Barangay
of Pampanga, Buhangin District, Davao City. Manuel appeared but Domingo did not on the schedule
hearing by the Punong Bgy. Domingo was represented, however, by his wife who said her husband wanted
to avoid a direct confrontation with his brother. She requested that the Punong Bgy issue a certification
that no settlement had been reached so a complaint could be filed in court. The Punong Bgy complied.
Thereupon, Domingo sued Manuel in the RTC Davao, also for accounting, in Civil Case No. 18560-87.
Manuel moved to dismiss the complaint on the ground of non-compliance with the requirements of
PD1508. He cited the failure of the Punong Bgy to refer the dispute to the Pangkat ng Tagapagkasundo
after the unsuccessful mediation proceedings convened by him. The motion was denied. Manuel then filed
with this Court a petition for certiorari which was referred to the CA. CA denied the petition. It held that
there was no need for such referral because Domingo had clearly indicated, by his refusal to appear before
the Punong Bgy, that no extrajudicial settlement was possible between him and his brother. Manuel
questioned this decision.

Issue:

WoN the referral to the Pangkat was no longer necessary.

HELD: No.

The dispute should not have ended with the mediation proceedings before the Punong Barangay because of his
failure to effect a settlement. It was not for the Punong Barangay to say that referral to the Pangkat was no longer
necessary merely because he himself had failed to work out an agreement between the parties. The Pangkat could
have exerted more efforts and succeeded (where he had not) in resolving the dispute. If the complainant refuses
to appear before the Punong Barangay, he is barred from seeking judicial recourse for the same course of action.
The parties must appear in person without assistance of counsel, except minors and incompetents.
MORATA v GO G.R. No. L-62339 October 27, 1983

Facts:

On August 5, 1982, respondents Victor Go and Flora D. Go filed a complaint against petitioners Julius
Morata and Ma. Luisa Morata for recovery of a sum of money plus damages amounting to P49,400.00.

On the basis of the allegation in the complaint that the parties-litigants are all residents of
Cebu City, petitioners filed a motion to dismiss, on the ground of failure of the complaint to
allege prior availment by the plaintiffs of the barangay conciliation process required by P.D.
1508, as well as the absence of a certification by the Lupon or Pangkat Secretary that no
conciliation or settlement had been reached by the parties.

The motion to dismiss was denied on September 2, 1982. The petitioners' motion for
reconsideration was also denied on October 3, 1982.

Issue: Whether the conciliation process at the barangay level is also compulsory for actions cognizable
by the RTC.

HELD:Yes.

Sec.6, PD 1508 provides that the confrontation of the parties and conciliation before the Lupon is a
precondition for filing a complaint, except when:

1. The accused is under detention;

2. A person has otherwise been deprived of personal liberty calling for *habeas corpus*
proceedings;

3. Actions coupled with privisional remedies; and

4. Where the action may be barred by the Statute of Limitations.

Sec.2 provides additional exceptions, such as when:

1. A party is the government, or any subdivision or instrumentality;

2. One party is a public officer/employee and the dispute relates to the performance of his
official functions;
3. Offenses punishable by imprisonment exceeding 30 days or a fine exceeding P200;

4. Where there is no private offended party; and

5. Such other classes of disputes which the Prime Minister may, in the inetrest of justice,
determine upon recommendation of the Minister of Justice and the Minister of Local
Government.

Thus, except in the instances enumerated in Secs. 2 and 6 of the law, the Lupon has the authority to
settle amicably all types of disputes involving parties who actually reside in the same city or municipality.

The law makes no distinction whatsoever with respect to the classes of civil disputes that should be
compromised at the barangay level. Where the law does not distinguish, we should not distinguish.

By compelling the disputants to settle their differences through the intervention of the barangay
leader and other respected members of the barangay, the animosity generated by protracted court
litigations between members of the same political unit, a disruptive factor toward unity and cooperation, is
avoided. It must be borne in mind that the conciliation process at the barangay level is also designed to
discourage indiscriminate filing of cases in court in order to decongest its clogged dockets and enhance
the quality of justice dispensed by it.

The law obviously intended to grant the Lupon as broad and comprehensive authority as possible as
would bring about the optimum realization of the aforesaid objectives. These objectives would only be
half-met and easily thwarted if the Lupon's authority is exercised only in cases falling within the exclusive
jurisdiction of inferior courts.
Jurisdiction over cases involving real property or any interest therein, except forcible entry and detainer
cases, has always been vested in the Courts of First Instance.

The authority of the Lupon is clearly established in Sec.2 of the law; whereas Secs. 11, 12 and 14
deal with the nullification or execution of the settlement or arbitration awards obtained at the barangay
level. These sections conferred upon the city & municipal courts the jurisdiction to pass upon and resolve
petitions or actions for nullification or enforcement of settlement/arbitration awards issued by the Lupon,
regardless of the amount involved or the nature of the original dispute. But there is nothing in the context
of said sections to justify the thesis that the mandated conciliation process in other types of cases applies
exclusively to said inferior courts.
Therefore, the conciliation process at the barangay level, prescribed by P.D. 1508 as a pre-
condition for filing a complaint in court, is compulsory not only for cases falling under the exclusive
competence of the metropolitan and municipal trial courts, but for actions cognizable by the
regional trial courts as well.

AQUINO, J.: concurring:

The case filed by the Go spouses is covered by the Katarungang Pambarangay Law, Presidential Decree
No. 1508. The impression that the law applies only to cases filed in inferior courts does not seem to be
correct. Of course, the law applies only to disputes between or among persons actually residing in the same
barangay or to those involving actual residents of different barangays within the same city or municipality
(Sec. 3).

VDA de BORROMEO v POGOY G.R. No. L-63277. November 29, 1983

FACTS:

Petitioner herein seeks to stop respondent Judge Julian B. Pogoy of the Municipal Trial
Court of Cebu City from taking cognizance of an ejectment suit for failure of the plaintiff to refer
the dispute to the Barangay Lupon for conciliation.

The intestate estate of the late Vito Borromeo is the owner of a building bearing the deceaseds
name which was leased and occupied by petitioner Petra Vda. de Borromeo at a monthly rental
of P500.00 payable in advance within the first five days of the month.

On August 28, 1982, Atty. Ricardo Reyes, administrator of the estate, served upon
petitioner a demand letter for her to pay theoverdue rentals corresponding to the period from
March to September 1982, and thereafter to vacate the premises. Petitioner failed to do
so and Atty. Reyes instituted an ejectment case against the former.

Petitioner moved to dismiss the casepointing out that the parties are residents of the same
city and must refer the dispute to the barangay court, as required by PD No. 1508, otherwise
known as Katarungang PambarangayLaw.
The motion was dismissed thus this case.

ISSUE: Whether or not going through Lupon was necessary?

RULING: NO

The defense of Atty Reyes regarding the statute of limitations is unacceptable because the case
was filed on September 16, 1982, less than a month before the letter of demand was served. Forcible
entry and detainer prescribes in one year counted from demand to vacate the premises and the law only
required 60 days upon which the parties should try to reconcile in Lupon; Respondent had more than 9
months left even if reconciliation failed.

Under Section 4(a) of PD No. 1508, referral of a dispute to the Barangay Lupon is required
only where the parties thereto are "individuals." An "individual" means "a single human being as
contrasted with a social group or institution." 5 Obviously, the law applies only to cases involving
natural persons, and not where any of the parties is a juridical person such as a corporation,
partnership, corporation sole, testate or intestate, estate, etc.

In Civil Case No. R-23915, plaintiff Ricardo Reyes is a mere nominal party who is suing
in behalf of the Intestate Estate of Vito Borromeo. While it is true that Section 3, Rule 3 of the
Rules of Court allows the administrator of an estate to sue or be sued without joining the party
for whose benefit the action is presented or defended, it is indisputable that the real party in
interest in Civil Case No. R-23915 is the intestate estate under administration. Since the said
estate is a juridical person 6 plaintiff administrator may file the complaint directly in court,
without the same being coursed to the Barangay Lupon for arbitration.