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Stat Con Midterm reviewer

1. Caltex v Palomar
a. Definition of Stat Con
b. Prohibitive anti-lottery provisions of the Postal law required an inquiry into the intended
meaning of the words. SC affirmed the appealed judgment by declaring Caltex scheme as not
subject to the anti-lottery provisions being construed as neither lottery nor gift enterprise.
Scheme is merely a gratuitous distribution of property by chance.
c. Stat Con is the art and process of discovering and expounding the meaning and intention of
the authors of the law with respect to its application to a given case, where the intention of
the authors of the law with respect to its application to a given case, where that intention is
rendered doubtful, amongst others, by reason of the fact that the given case is not explicitly
provided for in the law.
2. National Federation of Labor (NFL) v. Eisma
a. When does stat con come in? Whether construction is reqd to determine jurisdiction?
b. Complaint for damages arising from petitioner union’s picketing and strike-related
activities evolves into a question of jurisdiction between CFI and a labor arbiter. SC
ruled that jurisdiction is given only by law and is never presumed. Issue resolved on
the basis of the law or statute in force.
c. The first and fundamental duty of courts, in our judgment, is to apply the law.
Construction and interpretation come only after it has been demonstrated that
application is impossible or inadequate without them (Lizarraga Hermanos v. Yap
Tico, 1913). Any deviation from the express terms of the law cannot therefore be
3. Paat v. CA
a. When does stat con come in? Whether construction admits that the authority to confiscate or to forfeit
conveyances belongs to the courts
b. Petition questions CA ruling sustaining lower court’s decision to return truck
confiscated by DENR. SC reversed CA ruling, directing,among others, DENR
Secretary to resolve the controversy.
c. When the statute is clear and explicit, there is hardly room for any extended
court ratiocination or rationalization of the law.
4. People v. Mapa
a. When does stat con come in? Whether agent acting as Gov bodyguard included in exemption from
firearms license reqt?
b. Mapa appeal of conviction on illegal possession of firearms charges was elevated to
SC as a question of law. SC affirmed appealed judgment as Mapa as no secret
agent is included in exemption list provided by law. Reliance in People v
Macarandang is misplaced as secret agent in latter case was sufficiently placed in
the category of a peace officer, which is exempted from the license requirement by
c. It is the first and fundamental duty of courts to apply the law; Construction and
interpretation come only after it has been demonstrated that application is
impossible or inadequate without them. The law cannot be any clearer, there
being no provision made for a secret agent.
5. Daoang v. Municipal Judge of San Nicolas
a. When does stat con come in?
b. Petitioners, Agonoy grandchildren elevates to SC opposition to granparents’
adoption of two minors, granted by the municipal court. SC affirms appealed
judgment, declaring that Art 335(1) of the Civil Code used clear and unambiguous
words in defining persons who cannot adopt.
c. Well known is the rule of statutory construction to the effect that a statute clear
and unambiguous on its face need not be interpreted. The rule is that only
statutes with an ambiguous or doubtful meaning may be the subject of statutory
6. Paras v. Comelec
a. When does statutory construction come in? Whether the Sangguniang Kabataan election is to be
construed as a regular local election in a recall
b. Petitioner Paras elevates to SC, opposition to Comelec recall election order. After
said recall election has been re-scheduled 3x, issue became moot.
c. It is a rule in statutory construction that every part of the statute must be
interpreted with reference to the context, i.e., that every part of the statute
must be considered together with the other parts, and kept subservient to the
general intent of the whole enactment. In the case at bar, Paragraph (b) of Section
74 construed together with paragraph (a) merely designates the period when such
elective local official may be subject of a recall election, i.e. during the second year
of his term of office. SK elections cannot be considered a regular election as
this would render inutile the recall provision of the LGC. In the interpretation of a
statute, the Court should start with the assumption that the legislature
intended to enact an effective law. An interpretation should, if possible,
be avoided under which a statute or provision being construed is
defeated, or as otherwise expressed, nullified, destroyed, emasculated, repealed,
explained away, or rendered insignificant, meaningless, inoperative or nugatory.
7. Floresca v. Philex Mining
a. Statutory Construction vs. Judicial Legislation: Statutory Construction, whose job is it?
b. Heirs of miners killed in cave-in in one of Philex’s sites claimed damges under civil
code provisions under damages arising from negligence. Said heirs elevates matter
to SC after CFI dismissed complaint for lack of jurisdiction.
c. Heirs were allowed to pursue CC remedy but are not entitled to recover under both
(CC and WCA) remedies.The Court, through its majority, defended itself by holding
that the Court does not legislate but merely applies and gives effect to the
constitutional guarantees of social justice. Further, it reiterated its ruling in
People vs. Licera: that judicial decisions of the Supreme Court assume the
same authority as the statute itself, pursuant to Article 8 of the Civil Code
of the Philippines which decrees that judicial decisions applying or interpreting the
laws or the Constitution form part of this jurisdiction’s legal system. It argues that
the application or interpretation placed by the Court upon a law is part of the law as
of the date of the enactment of the said law since the Court’s application or
interpretation merely establishes the contemporaneous legislative intent
that the construed law purports to carry into effect. Yet, the Court argues
that the Court can legislate, pursuant to Article 9 of the New Civil Code, which
provides that “No judge or court shall decline to render judgment by reason of the
silence, obscurity or insufficiency of the laws
8. Republic v. CA and Molina
a. Statutory Construction vs. Judicial Legislation: Statutory Construction, whose job is it?
b. Klkl
9. Statutory Construction vs. Judicial Legislation: Statutory Construction, whose job is it?- "To declare what the law
shall be is a legislative power, but to declare what the law is or has been, is judicial."
i. case 7:

C. Legislative Intent, how ascertained

How must Legislative Intent be ascertained?
- Legislative intent must be ascertained from a consideration of the statute as a whole. The
particular words, clauses and phrases should not be studied as detached and isolated expressions, but the whole and
every part of the statute must be considered in fixing the meaning of any of its parts and in order to produce a
harmonious whole. A statute must be construed so as to harmonize and give effect to all its provisions
case 9: Aisporna v. CA (GR L-39419, 12 April 1982)
China Bank v. Ortega (GR L-34964, 31 January 1973)
Board of Administrators of the PVA v. Bautista (GR L-37867, 22 Feb. 1982)
D. Power to Construe
- The duty and power to interpret or construe a statute or the Constitution belong to the judiciary. It
is the duty of the legislature to make the law; of the executive to execute the law; and of the judiciary to construe the
- While the legislature may indicate its construction of a statute in the form of a resolution or declaratory act, it
cannot preclude the courts from giving the statute a different interpretation.

E. Limitations on the Power to Construe

- The courts may not enlarge nor restrict statutes.
- Courts not to be influenced by questions of wisdom.

III. Aids in Construction

A. Intrinsic Aids
B. Extrinsic Aids
case 10: Roman Catholic Archbishop of Manila v. SSC (GR L-15045, 20 Jan. 1961)
- To ascertain the true intent of the statute, the court may avail of intrinsic aids, or those found in the
printed page of the statute, and extrinsic aids, those extraneous facts and circumstances outside the printed page.
> Title - It may indicate the legislative extent or restrict the scope of law
> Preamble - It may, when the statute is ambiguous, be resorted to clarify the ambiguity, as a key to open
the minds of the lawmakers as to the purpose of the statute.
> Context of the whole text - best source from which to ascertaun the legislative intent is the statute itself
> Legislative History - Where a statute is susceptible to several interpretations, there is no better means of
ascertaining the will and intention of the legislature than that which is afforded by the history of the statute. The
history of a statute refers to all its antecedents from its inception until its enactment into law.
> Legislative debates, views and deliberations - Where there is doubt as to what a provision of a statute
means, that meaning which was put to the provision during the legislative deliberation or discussion on the bill maybe
> Reports of the Commission - In construing the provisions of the code as thus enacted, courts may
properly refer to the reports of the commission that drafted the code in aid of clarifiying ambiguities therein.
> Prior laws from which the statute is based - Legislative history will clarify the intent of the law or shed
light on the meaning and scope of the codified or revised statute.
> Change in phraseology - Courts may investigate the history of the provisions to ascertain legislative
intent as to the meaning and scope of the amended law.
> History of the times - The history of the times out of which the law grew and to which it may be
rationally supposed to bear some direct relationship.

C. Contemporary Construction

case 11: David vs. Comelec, 271 SCRA 90

IV. Interpretation of Statutes

A. Literal Construction
Statutes are to be interpreted in their ordinary, commonly accepted usage. When the language of the law is clear and
unequivocal, the law must be taken to mean exactly what it says. When statutory norm speaks unequivocally, there is
nothing for the Courts to do but apply it.
case 12: Salvatierra v. CA (GR 107797, 26 August 1996)
Kapisanan ng mga Manggagawa v. Manila Railroad Company (GR
L-25316, 28 February 1979)

a. Departure from Literal Interpretation

when literal interpretation not favored
- the rules of Court are procedural in nature while the Civil Code is substantive
- thespirit, rather than the letter, of a law determines its construction; hence, a
statute must be read according to its spirit and intent.
case 13: Abellana v. Marave (GR L-27760)
Paras vs. Comelec, 264 SCRA 49, supra

b. Implications

B. Executive Construction
basic rule on Executive Construction
- the contemporaneous construction of a statute by the executive officers of the government whose duty is to execute it,
is entitled to great respect, and should ordinarily control the construction of the statute by the courts.
case 14: PAFLU v. Bureau of Labor Relations (GR L-43760 21 Aug 76)

when Executive Construction is not given weight

- while it is true that contemporaneous construction placed upon a statute by executive officers must be given great
weight, if such construction is clearly erroneous, it must be declared null and void.
case 15: Philippine Apparel WU v. NLRC (GR L-50320 31 July 81)
IBAA Employees Union v. Inciong (GR L52415, 23 October 1984)
Chartered Bank Employees Association v. Ople (GR L-44717, 28
Aug 85)

C. Rule vs. Opinion

What is the difference between a rule and an opinion
rule- when an administrative agency promulgates rules and regulations, it makes a new law with the force and effect
of a valid law.
opinion- gives a statement of policy and merely interprets a pre-existing law.
case 16: Victorias Milling v. SSC (GR L-16704, 17 March 1962)

D. Strict Construction
E. Liberal Construction
V. Subjects of Construction
The Constitution
- it is the written instrument agreed upon by the the absolute rule of action and decision for all
departments and officers of the government, and in opposition to which any act or rule of any department or officer
of the government, or even of the people themselves, will be altogether void.

How should the constitution be construed

- the Constitution should be strictly construed so as to give effect to the whole instrument, and to every section and
clause. If different portions seem to conflict, the Courts must harmonize them, if practicable, and must lean in favor
of a construction which will render every word operative, rather than one which may make some words idle and
case 17: Sarmiento v. Mison (GR 79974, 17 December 1987)
Perfecto v. Meer (GR L-2348, 27 February 1950)
Endencia v. David (GR L-6355-56, 31 August 1953)
case 18: Nitafan v. CIR (GR L-78780, 23 July 1987)

May the preamble be referred to in the construction of Constitutional Provisions?

- yes, the preamble may be referred to in the construction of constitutional provisions. When the Filipino people, in
the Preamble of their Constitution, implored “the aid of Divine Providence, in order to establish a government that
shall embody their ideals, conserve and develop the patrimony of the nation, promote the general welfare, and
secure for themselves and their posterity the blessings of independence under a regime of justice, liberty and
democracy,” they thereby manifested their intense religious nature and placed unfaltering reliance upon Him who
guides the destinies of men and nations.
case 19: Aglipay v. Ruiz (GR 45459, 13 March 1937)

Are the provisions of the Constitution self-executing?

- Constitutional provision is self executing if the nature and extent of the right conferred and the liability imposed
are fixed by the Constitution itself, so that they can be determined by an examination and construction of its terms,
and there is no language indicating that the subject is referred to the legislature for action.
case 20: Manila Prince Hotel v. GSIS (GR 122156, 3 February 1997)

- an act of the legislature commanding or prohibiting something; a particular law enacted and established by the
will of the legislative department of government; the written will of the legislature, solemnly expressed according to
the forms necessary to constitute it the law of the state.

Requirements for the publication of laws

- laws shall take effect after 15 days following the completion of their publication in the Official Gazette unless it is
otherwise provided.
- when the law is silent as to the effectivity date, publication in the Official
Gazette is necessary for determining the date of effectivity
case 21: Tanada v. Tuvera (GR L-63915, 24 April 1985)
case 22: Tanada v. Tuvera (GR L-63915, 29 December 1986)