CASE DIGESTS IN CONFLICTS OF LAW (CL 320) BY: ROSE ANNE Q.

TIBURCIO
Edi-Staffbuilders Inc. (EDI) v. NLRC and Eleazar Gran G. R. No. 145587, October 26, 2007, J. Velasco, Jr. FACTS:

March 12, 2011

Gran was an OFW recruited by EDI, and deployed by ESI (another recruitment agency) to work for OAB, in Riyadh, KSA. After Gran had been working for about five months for OAB, his employment was terminated through OAB's letter, based on: (1) noncompliance to contract requirements by the recruitment agency primarily on the salary and contract duration; (2) Non-compliance to pre-qualification requirements by the recruitment agency, OAB; and (3) insubordination or disobedience to Top Management Order and/or instructions (i.e. non-submittal of daily activity reports despite several instructions). Gran received from OAB the total amount of SR 2,948.00 representing his final pay, and thereafter, executed a declaration releasing OAB from any financial obligation. Upon arrival in the Philippines, Gran instituted a complaint, against ESI/EDI and OAB inter alia, with the NLRC - NCR, Quezon City, for underpayment of wages/salaries and illegal dismissal. ISSUE: Whether or not Gran's dismissal is justifiable by reason of incompetence, insubordination, and disobedience. RULING: EDI failed to prove that Gran was justifiably dismissed due to incompetence, insubordination, or willful disobedience. In illegal dismissal cases, it has been established by Philippine law and jurisprudence that the employer should prove that the dismissal of employees or personnel is legal and just. In cases involving OFWs, the rights and obligations among and between the OFW, the local recruiter/agent, and the foreign employer/principal are governed by the employment contract. A contract freely entered into is considered law between the parties hence, should be respected. The employment contract signed by Gran specifically states that Saudi Labor Laws will govern matters not provided for in the contract (e.g. specific causes for termination, termination procedures, etc.). Being the law intended by the parties (lex loci intentiones) to apply to the contract, Saudi Labor Laws should govern all matters relating to the termination of the employment of Gran. However, the party who wants to have a foreign law applied to a dispute or case has the burden of proving the foreign law. The foreign law is treated as a question of fact to be properly pleaded and proved as the judge or labor arbiter cannot take judicial notice of a foreign law. He is presumed to know only domestic or forum law. Unfortunately for EDI, it did not prove the pertinent Saudi laws on the matter; thus, the doctrine of presumed-identity approach or processual presumption comes into play. Where a foreign law is not pleaded or, even if pleaded, is not proved, the presumption is that foreign law is the same as ours. Thus, Philippine labor laws was applied in this case. According to Philippine laws, incompetence may be shown by weighing it against a standard, benchmark, or criterion. However, EDI failed to establish any such bases to show how EDI found Gran incompetent. Likewise, in order to justify willful disobedience, it must be

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Thus. Climaco filed with the SSC Bacolod City. however. RULING: 2 . Climaco inquired with the DOLE and the SSS whether he was an employee of the Coca-cola. Dr. service incentive leave pay. Climaco "agrees to perform the duties and obligations" enumerated in the Comprehensive Medical Plan. R. Dr. a petition praying. that petitioner Coca-Cola be ordered to report him for compulsory social security coverage. lawful. EDI failed to show that the order of the company which was violated—the submission of "Daily Activity Reports"—was part of Gran's duties as a Computer Specialist. An allegation of incompetence should have a factual foundation. Coca-cola terminated its Retainer Agreement with Dr. Reyes R. Both agencies replied in the affirmative. Explicit in the contract.CASE DIGESTS IN CONFLICTS OF LAW (CL 320) BY: ROSE ANNE Q. which was attached and made an integral part of the agreement. 2008. In case of its termination. holiday pay. J. In the case at bar. Coca-cola Bottlers (Phils. FACTS: Coca-cola and Dr. Dean Climaco G. among others. No. made known to the employee." In consideration of the retainer's fee. and pertains to the duties which he had been engaged to discharge. Meantime. Climaco entered into a Retainer Agreement for one year. SSS and Dr. Climaco "shall be entitled only to such retainer fee as may be due him at the time of termination. Climaco. Dr. Dr. TIBURCIO March 12. July 31. petition is denied." The agreement further provided that "either party may terminate the contract upon giving thirty (30)-day written notice to the other.) Inc v. seeking recognition as a regular employee of Coca-cola and demanding payment of his 13th month pay. As a result. where he "may charge professional fees for hospital services rendered in line with his specialization. 159323. 2011 determined whether the order violated by the employee is reasonable. while the NLRC cases were pending. Hence. Dr. cost of living allowance.T.Bacolod City. is the provision that no employee-employer relationship shall exist between the company and Dr. Climaco while the contract is in effect. During the pendency of the complaint." Dr. Climaco filed a complaint before the NLRC . Christmas bonus and all other benefits. ISSUE: Whether or not Dr. Climaco is guilty of forum shopping which warrant outright dismissal of the case. Climaco filed another complaint for illegal dismissal against the Coca-cola before the NLRC.

in conflicts of law cases. It was held in First Philippine International Bank v. x x x In the Philippines. the principle of forum non conveniens was developed whereby a court. forum shopping has acquired a connotation encompassing not only a choice of venues. the reliefs sought and the causes of action are different. to avoid overcrowded dockets. To combat these less than honorable excuses. TIBURCIO March 12. and all raising substantially the same issues either pending in. or to select a more friendly venue.] In short. may refuse impositions on its jurisdiction where it is not the most "convenient" or available forum and the parties are not precluded from seeking remedies elsewhere. 3 . simultaneously or successively. but also to a choice of remedies. While it is true that the parties are identical in the NLRC and in the SSS. by some other court. 2011 Dr. including to secure procedural advantages. as it was originally understood in conflicts of laws. Forum shopping traces its origin in private international law on choice of venues. where nonresident litigants are given the option to choose the forum or place wherein to bring their suit for various reasons or excuses. forum shopping exists where the elements of litis pendentia are present or where a final judgment in one case will amount to res judicata in the other. to annoy and harass the defendant. Court of Appeals. that: x x x forum shopping originated as a concept in private international law. There is forum shopping when one party repetitively avails of several judicial remedies in different courts. which later developed to a choice of remedies. Petition denied.CASE DIGESTS IN CONFLICTS OF LAW (CL 320) BY: ROSE ANNE Q. or already resolved adversely. all substantially founded on the same transactions and the same essential facts and circumstances. Climaco is not guilty of forum shopping.

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