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STAT CON (pp1-50) Reviewer

Chapter 1: Construction and Interpretation of the Laws

 As a member of the legal profession, it is not enough that you know the law, what is more
important is you know how to apply it, so that in the end, justice and fairness will prevail.
1.2 Construction and Interpretation, in General

Construction- as applied to written law, is the art or 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 that intention is rendered doubtful either by reason of apparently conflicting
provisions or directions, or by reason of the fact that the given case is not explicitly
provided for in the law (Henry Campbell Black)

Interpretation- as applied to written law, is the art or process of discovering and expounding
the intended signification of the language used, that is, the meaning which the authors of
the law designed it to convey to others

 Construction mainly relates to the ascertainment of the meaning and intention of the
authors of the law;
 While, interpretation is mainly concerned with the meaning of the language used
However, William M. Lile and his co-authors, in their book entitled: Brief Making and the Use of
Law Books, said that the two terms are synonymous for the real object of the two terms is merely
to ascertain the meaning and will of the lawmaking body, in order that it may be enforced.
 Construction and Interpretation may be used interchangeably because:
1. They are both utilized in case of ambiguity in the law- in the language used or in its
2. They have the same object- to ascertain the meaning and will of the authors of the law in
order that the law be enforced
 In Article 8 of the Civil Code, the term Construction has the same significance as
Interpretation for both shall form a part of the legal system of the Philippines
 Constructions and interpretation guides or assists the court as well as the legal practitioners
in unfolding and establishing the real meaning and purpose of an ambiguous and obscure
term or provisions of the law.
Statutory Construction v Constitutional Construction
The two differ on:
1. Subject – subject of CC is the Constitution while the SC are laws lower than the
Constitution such as statues, ordinance, and their implementing rules and regulations
2. Intent- SC interprets, ascertain and discover the intent of the legislature while CC seeks to
ascertain the intent of the framers of the Constitution
Chapter 2: Relevant Concepts and Principles to Construction and Interpretation of the Laws
Three branches of the government
1. Executive Power – President – power to administer and enforce law
2. Legislative Power- Congress composing of the Senate (24) and House of representative()
– power to make, amend and repeal laws
3. Judiciary Power- Supreme Court and all lower courts- power to apply and interpret laws

 The relationship among the three branches of the government are governed by two
constitutional mandates:
1. Principle of Separation of Powers – its concepts of autonomy and independence stems from
the notion that the powers of the government must be divided to avoid concentration of
these powers in any one branch from lording its power over the other branches or the
2. Principle of Checks and Balances- This principle means that every branch of our
government does not encroach over the powers of another. This is created to maintain
harmony of the government as a whole.
 The Judicial independence applies to the Judicial power wherein the neither the president
nor the congress may overruled or reversed the decisions of the Supreme Court. No other
department may pass upon judgments of the Supreme Court. This is done for the reason
that the judiciary branch must be independent of political pressure and interference in order
to survive.
Types of Legislation
1. Bill- prefixed with S., for the senate and H., for the house of representatives. When passed
by both chambers identical form and signed by the president or repassed by the congress
over presidential veto, a bill becomes a law.
2. Joint Resolution- like the bill, requires the approval of both houses and signature of the
president. It has the force and effect of a law if approved. This is used when dealing with
a single item or issue.
3. Concurrent Resolution- designated as S. Ct. Res. , It is used for matters affecting the
operations of the houses and must be passed in the same form by both of them. It is not
referred to the president for signature.
4. Simple Resolution- Senate- P.S. Res., and House- H. Res.,. This is not considered by the
other chamber and referred to the president for signature. It has no effect or force of law.
It is used to call for congressional action on an issue affecting national interest.
Legislative process
1. Number/Calendaring for First reading
- A bill is given a corresponding number and calendared for first reading
2. First reading
- The secretary general reads only the title and number of the bill, and the speaker refers
the bill to the appropriate committee
3. Committee consideration/action
- The committee where the bill was referred evaluates the bill to determine the necessity
of conducting public hearings
4. Calendaring for Second reading
5. Second reading
- The secretary general read the number, title, and text of the bill
a. Period of Sponsorship and debate- turno en contra to highlight the pros and cons
b. Period of amendments
c. Voting
1. Viva voce- aye – agree and nay – disagree
2. Count by tellers- one member of each side count the affirmative and the negative
3. Division of the house- Secretary general asks those who agreed to stand, followed by those
who disagree
iv. Nominal voting- the secretary general calls, in alphabetical order, the names of the
members who shall state their vote as their names are called
6. Printing and distribution of copies of the bill’s final version
7. Third reading – the secretary general reads only the number and title of the bill. A roll call
or nominal voting is held. No amendment of the bill is allowed
8. Senate action on the same bill
9. Bicameral Conference Committee- this is to held to reconcile the differences made by each
houses to the bill
10. Presentation of the bill to the president
11. Approval of the bill
Ways to approve:
1. If the president signs the bill
2. If the bill is vetoed, the same, together with a message citing the reason for the veto, is
transmitted to thehouse where the bill originated. If the congress decides to override the
veto, the house and the senate shall reconsider the bill. If the vetoed items passed two thirds
of the members of each house, such bill will become law
3. If the president neither communicates his veto of the bill nor signs it within 30 days, the
bill will become a law as if he signed it.
Principle of Non-delegation of power and its exemption
 Legislative power shall be exclusively exercised by the congress. Congress cannot
surrender or abdicate its legislative power for it is unconstitutional. Delegata potestas non
potest delegari.
 However, congress can have assistance to its coordinate department. Non-legislative
authority can be delegated
 Supplementary rule-making- filling up the details of the law
 Contingent rule-making- ascertaining of facts to bring the law into actual operation
 The grant of the rule-making power to administrative agencies is a relaxation of the
principle of separation of powers and is an exemption to the non-delegation of legislative
powers; however, the rule-making power must be confined to details for regulating the
mode or proceeding to carry into effect the law it has been enacted.
 The administrative IRRs must comply to the ff. requisites:
1. Its promulgation must be authorized by the legislature
2. It must be within the scope of the authority given by the legislature
3. It must be promulgated in accordance with the prescribed procedure
4. It must be reasonable
Executive Power
Whatever power inherent in the government that is neither legislative nor judicial has to be
executive. The constitution enumerates the power of the president but are not limited to them.
1. Power to enforce Laws
2. Power of Control
3. Power to issue orders, rules, and regulations (ordinance power)
These orders, rules are:
1. Executive orders – rules of a general or permanent character
2. Administrative orders- Acts of the president which relate to a particular aspect of
governmental operations in pursuance of his duties as administrative head
3. Proclamations- Acts of the president fixing a date or declaring a status or condition of
public moment or interest, upon the existence of which the operation of a specific law or
regulation is made to depend, shall be promulgated as proclamation which shall have a
force of an executive order
4. Memorandum Order- Acts on matters of administrative detail of subordinate or temporary
interest which only concern a particular officer or office
5. Memorandum Circulars- acts relating to internal administration which the president desires
to bring the attention of all or some of the departments, et al., for information or compliance
6. General or Special orders- Acts/Commands of the president as commander-in-chief of the
armed forces of the Philippinesshall be issued as general or special orders
4.Executive Act-encompasses decisions of administrative bodies and agencies under the executive
5. Power to inform congress

Judicial Department
Lower Courts:
1. Sandiganbayan , Court of Appeals, Court of Tax appeals
2. Regional Trial Courts/ Shari-a District Courts
3. Metropolitan Trial Courts, Metropolitan Circuit Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts,
Shari-a Trial Courts
1. Power to apply or interpret the law (Art. 8 Civil Code)
2. Judicial Construction v. Judicial Legislation (Section 5, Article VIII of the Constitution)
3. Duty of the court to apply the law

Stare Decisis
“let the law stand”
-general procedural law principle which deals with the effect of previous but factually similar
disposition to subsequent case (Article 8 of the civil code)
 The supreme court is bound to adhere to the principle of stare decisis unless there are
powerful countervailing considerations that will require deviation therefrom.
 Hence, when a case before the justices of the supreme court sitting in a division is factually
similar to a prior case, the doctrine laid down in the latter should be applied to the former
for its disposition.
 In sum, the application and interpretation made in a prior case should be likewise made
applicable to the subsequent factually similar cases. The court should stand by precedent
and not to disturb settled points.