P r a c t i c e

o f

L a w

1 . D e f i n i t i o n C a y e t a n o 2 0 1 Facts: Respondent Christian Monsod was nominated by President Corazon C. Aquino to the position of chairman of the COMELEC. Petitioner opposed the nomination because allegedly Monsod does not posses required qualification of having been engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years. The 1987 constitution provides in Section 1, Article IX-C: There shall be a Commission on Elections composed of a Chairman and six Commissioners who shall be natural-born citizens of the Philippines and, at the time of their appointment, at least thirty-five years of age, holders of a college degree, and must not have been candidates for any elective position in the immediately preceding elections. However, a majority thereof, including the Chairman, shall be members of the Philippine Bar who have been engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years. Issue: Whether the respondent does not posses the required qualification of having engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years. Held: In the case of Philippine Lawyers Association vs. Agrava, stated: The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases or litigation in court; it embraces the preparation of pleadings and other papers incident to actions and special proceeding, the management of such actions and proceedings on behalf of clients before judges and courts, and in addition, conveying. In general, all advice to clients, and all action taken for them in matters connected with the law incorporation services, assessment and condemnation services, contemplating an appearance before judicial body, the foreclosure of mortgage, enforcement of a creditor’s claim in bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings, and conducting proceedings in attachment, and in matters of estate and guardianship have been held to constitute law practice. Practice of law means any activity, in or out court, which requires the application of law, legal procedure, knowledge, training and experience. The contention that Atty. Monsod does not posses the required qualification of having engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years is incorrect since Atty. Monsod’s past work experience as a lawyer-economist, a lawyer-manager, a lawyer-entrepreneur of industry, a lawyer-negotiator of contracts, and a lawyer-legislator of both rich and the poor – verily more than satisfy the constitutional requirement for the position of COMELEC chairman, The respondent has been engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years does In the view of the foregoing, the petition is DISMISSED.*** The Supreme Court held that the appointment of Monsod is in accordance with the requirement of law as having been engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years. Monsod’s past work experiences as a lawyereconomist, a lawyer-manager, a lawyer-entrepreneur of industry, a lawyer negotiator of contracts and a lawyer-legislator of both the rich and the poor verily more than satisfy the constitutional requirement that he has been engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years. Again, in the case of Philippine Lawyer’s Association vs. Agrava, the practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases and litigation in court; item braces the preparation of pleadings and other papers incident to actions and social proceedings and other similar work which involves the determination by a legal mind the legal effects of facts and conditions. S C R A v s . M o n s o d 1 9 9 1

2 1 0 S e p t e m b e r

2. Petitioner Alan F. Paguia v. Office of the President GR 176278 At issue is the power of Congress to limit the President’s prerogative to nominate ambassadors by legislating age qualifications despite the constitutional rule limiting Congress’ role in the appointment of ambassadors to the Commission on Appointments’ confirmation of nominees. However, for lack of a case or controversy grounded on petitioner’s lack of capacity to sue and mootness, we dismiss the petition without reaching the merits, deferring for another day the resolution of the question raised, novel and fundamental it may be. Petitioner Alan F. Paguia (petitioner), as citizen and taxpayer, filed this original action for the writ of certiorari to invalidate President Gloria MacapagalArroyo’s nomination of respondent former Chief Justice Hilario G. Davide, Jr. (respondent Davide) as Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN) for violation of Section 23 of Republic Act No. 7157 (RA7 1 5 7 ) , t h e P h ilip p in e F o re ig n S er vic e Ac t o f 1 9 91 . P e t it io ne r ar gu e s t h a t r e sp o nd e n t D a vid e ’ s a g e a t t ha t t im e o f h is nomination in March 2006, 70, disqualifies him from holding his post. Petitioner grounds his argument on Section 23 of RA7157 pegging the mandatory retirement age of all officers and employees of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) at6 5 . P e t it io n e r th e o r ize s that S e c t io n 2 3 im po se s a n a b so lu t e r u le f o r a ll D F A e m p lo ye e s,

c a r e er o r n o n -ca r e er ; t h u s, respondent Davide’s entry into the DFA ranks discriminates against the rest of the DFA officials and employees. In t h e ir se p ar a t e C o m m e n t s, r e sp o nd en t D a vid e , t h e Of f ic e of

t h e P r e sid e n t , a nd t he S ec r e t ar y o f F o re ig n A ff a ir s ( r e sp on d e nt s) ra ise t h r e sh o ld issu e s a g a in st t he p e t it io n . F ir st , t h e y question petitioner’s standing to bring this suit because of his indefinite suspension from the practice of law. Second, the Office of the President and the Secretary of Foreign Affairs (public respondents) argue that neither petitioner’s citizenship nor his taxpayer status vests him with standing to

questionr e sp o n d e n t Da vid e ’s a p p o in t m e n t b ec a u se p e tit io n e r r e m a in s w it h o ut p er so n a l a n d su b st a n t ia l interest in the outcome of a suit which does not involve the taxing power of the state or the illegal d isb u r se m e n t o f p u b lic f u n d s. T h ird , p u blic r e sp o n d e n t s q u e st io n th e p r o pr ie t y o f th is p e t it ion , contending that this suit is in truth a petition for quo warranto which can only be filed by a contender for the office in question. On the eligibility of respondent Davide, respondents counter that Section 23’s mandated retirement age applies only to career diplomats, excluding from its ambit non-career appointees such as respondent Davide. The petition presents no case or controversy for petitioner’s lack of capacity to sue and mootness. First . Petitioner’s citizenship and taxpayer status do not clothe him with standing to bring this suit. We have granted access to citizen’s suits on the narrowest of ground: when they raise issues of ―transcendental‖ importance calling f o r u r g e nt r e so lu t io n . Th r e e f ac t o r s a r e re le va n t in o ur de t e r m in a t ion t o a llo w th ir d p a r t y su it s so w e c a n r e a c h an d r e so lve t h e m e r it s o f t h e c r u c ia l issu e s r a ise d – t h e c h a r a ct e r of f u nds o r a sse t s in vo lve d i n t h e c on t r o ve r sy, a c le a r disregard of constitutional or statutory prohibition, and the lack of any other party with a more direct and specific interest to b r in g t h e su it . No n e o f p e t it ion e r ’ s a lle g a t ion s c o m e s c lo se t o a n y of t h e se p a r a me t e r s. I n de ed , im p lic it in a p e t it io n se e k in g a ju d ic ia l in t e rp r e t at io n o f a st a tu t o r y

p r o visio n o n t h e r et ir e m e nt o f g o ve r n m en t p e r so nn e l o c c a sio n e d b y it s seemingly ambiguous crafting is the admission that a ―clear disregard of constitutional or statutory prohibition‖ is absent. Further, the DFA is not devoid of personnel with ―more direct and specific interest to bring the suit.‖ Career ambassadors forced to leave the service at the mandated retirement age unquestionably hold interest far more substantial and personal than petitioner’s generalized interest as a citizen in ensuring enforcement of the law. The same conclusion holds true for petitioner’s invocation of his taxpayer status. Taxpayers’ contributions to the state’s coffers entitle them to question appropriations for expenditures which are claimed to be unconstitutional or illegal. However, the salaries and benefits respondent

Davide received commensurate to his diplomatic rank are fixed byla w a n d o t h e r e xe c u t ive is su a n c e s, t h e f u n d ing f o r w h ic h w a s in c lud e d in th e a pp r op r ia t io n s f or th e D F A ’ s t o t a l expenditures contained in the annual budgets Congress passed since respondent Davide’s nomination. Having assumed o f f ic e u nd e r c o lor of a u t ho r it y

( a p p o int m e n t) , r e sp o n de n t Da vid e i s a t le a st a d e f a c t o officer entitled to draw salary, negating petitioner’s claim of ―illegal expenditure of scarce public funds.‖ Second . An incapacity to bring legal actions peculiar to petitioner also obtains. Petitioner’s suspension from the p r a ct ic e o f la w ba r s h im f ro m p er f or m in g ― a n y a ct ivit y, in o r o u t o f c o ur t , w h ic h r e qu ir e s t h e ap p lic a t io n o f la w , le g a l procedure, knowledge, training and experience.‖ Certainly, preparing a petition raising carefully crafted arguments on equal protection grounds and employing highly legalistic rules of statutory construction to parse Section 23 of RA 7157falls within the proscribed conduct. Third . A su p e r ve n in g e ve n t ha s r e n d e re d t h is c a se a c ad e m ic an d the r e lie f p r a ye d fo r

m o o t . Re sp o n d e n t Davide resigned his post at the UN on 1 April 2010. WHEREFORE, we DISMISS the petition.

3.

PHILIPPINE

LAWYER’S

ASSOCIATION

VS.

CELEDONIO

AGRAVA,

in

his

capacity

as Director of the Philippines Patent Office FACTS: A petition in was filed by the petitioner Director of for the prohibition Philippines and injunction Office. against On May Celedonio 27, 1957,

Agrava,

his capacity as

Patent

respondent Director issued a circular announcing that he had scheduled for June 27, 1957 an examination for the purpose of determining who are qualified to practice as patent

attorneys before the Philippines Patent Office. The petitioner contends that one who has passed the bar examinations and is licensed by the Supreme Court to practice law in the Philippines and who is in good standing, is duly qualified to practice before the

Philippines Patent Office and that the respondent

Director’s holding an examination for

the purpose is in excess of his jurisdiction and is in violation of the law. The respondent, in reply, maintains the prosecution of patent cases ― does not involve entirely or purely the practice of law but includes the application of scientific and technical knowl edge and training as a matter of actual practice so as to include engineers and other individuals who passed the examination can practice before the Patent office. Furthermore, he

stressed that for the long time he is holding tests, this is the first time that his right has been questioned formally. ISSUE: Whether or not the appearance before the patent Office and the preparation and the

prosecution of patent application, etc., constitutes or is included in the practice of law . HELD: The Supreme Court held that the practice of law includes such appearance before the Patent Office, the representation of applicants, oppositors, and other persons, and the prosecution of their applications for patent, their opposition thereto, or the

enforcement of their rights in patent cases. Moreover, the practice before the patent

Office involves the interpretation and application of other laws and legal principles, as well as the existence of facts to be established in accordance with the law of evidence and procedure. The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases or litigation in court but the also embraces all by law other the matters legal connected of the party with legal may Thus, the law and of any facts work and

involving

determination the

mind that the

effects appeal if the to

conditions. Court from in

Furthermore, any the and final

provides of

any

the

Supreme of

order

or

decision involved logically,

director. or

transactions and to

business

Patent training,

Office then

exclusively the appeal

mostly be

technical taken

scientific acourt or

knowledge

should

not

judicial body, but rather to a board of scientists, engineers or technical men, which is not the case.

4. OCA vs. Ladaga OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR vs. ATTY. MISAEL M. LADAGAA.M. No. P-99-1287 January 26, 2001 Facts:Atty. Misael Ladaga, Branch Clerk of Court of the Regional Trial Court of Makati, appeared as counsel for and in behalf of his cousin, Narcisa Naldoza Ladaga, an accused in Criminal Case No. 84-885 for ―Falsification of Public Documents‖ before the METC of Quezon City. It is also denied that the appearance of said respondent in said case was without the previous permission of the Court. During the occasions that the respondent appeared as such counsel before the METC of Quezon City, he was on official leave of absence. Moreover, his Presiding Judge, Judge Napoleon Inoturan was aware of the case he was handling. Respondent appeared as pro bono counsel for his cousin -client Narcisa Ladaga. Respondent did not receive a single centavo from her. Helpless as she was and respondent being the only lawyer in the family, he agreed to represent her out of his compassion and high regard for her. This is the first time that respondent ever handled a case for a member of his family who is like a big sister to him. He appeared for free and for the purpose of settling the case amicably. Furthermore, his Presiding Judge was aware of his appearance as counsel for his cousin. On top of this, during all the years that hehas been in government service, he has maintained his integrity and independence. He failed to obtain a prior permission from the head of the Department. The presiding judge of the court to which respondent is assigned is not the head of the Department contemplated by law. Issue: Whether or not Atty. Ladaga, upon such several appearances, was engages into private practice? NO Held: Respondent is charged under Sec. 7(b)(2) of the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees which prohibits civil servants from engaging in the private practice of their profession. A similar prohibition is found under Sec. 35, Rule 138 of the Revised Rules of Court which disallows certain attorneys from engaging in the private practice of their profession.

2. Admission a. Legal ProfessionIn re: Cunanan Resolution Cunanan, et. al 18March1954 FACTS OF THE CASE: In the manner of the petitions for Admission to the Bar of unsuccessful candidates of 1946 to 1953; Albino Cunanan et. al petitioners. In recent years few controversial issues have aroused so much public interest and concern as R.A. 972 popularly known as the ―Bar Flunkers’ Act of 1953.‖ Generally a candidate is deemed passed if he obtains a general ave of 75% in all subjects w/o falling below 50% in any subject, although for the past few exams the passing grades were changed depending on the strictness of the correcting of the bar examinations(1946- 72%, 1947- 69%, 1948- 70% 194974%, 1950-1953 – 75%).Believing themselves to be fully qualified to practice law as those reconsidered and passed by the S.C., and feeling that they have been discriminated against, unsuccessful candidates who obtained averages of a few percentages lower than those admitted to the bar went to congress for, and secured in 1951 Senate Bill no. 12, but was vetoed by the president after he was given advise adverse to it. Not overriding the veto, the senate then approved senate bill no. 372 embodying substantially the provisions of the vetoed bill. The bill then became law on June 21, 1953Republic Act 972 has for its object, according to its author, to admit to the Bar those candidates who suffered from insufficiency of reading materials and inadequate preparations. By and large, the law iscontrary to public interest since it qualifies 1,09 4 law graduates who had inadequate preparation for thepractice of law profession, as evidenced by their failure in the exams. ISSUES OF THE CASE: Due to the far reaching effects that this law would have on the legal profession and the administration of justice, the S.C. would seek to know if it is CONSTITUTIONAL. - An adequate legal preparation is one of the vital requisites for the practice of the law that should be developed constantly and maintained firmly. - The Judicial system from which ours has been derived, the act of admitting, suspending, disbarring, and reinstating attorneys at law in the practice of the profession is concededly judicial. - The Constitution, has not conferred on Congress and the S.C. equal responsibilities concerning the admission to the practice of law. The primary power and responsibility which the constitution recognizes continue to reside in this court. - Its retroactivity is invalid in such a way, that what the law seeks to ―cure‖ are not the rules set in place by the S.C. but the lack of will or the defect in judgment of the court, and this power is not included in the power granted by the Const. to Congress, it lies exclusively w/in the judiciary. -Reasons for Unconstitutionality: 1. There was a manifest encroachment on the constitutional responsibility of the Supreme Court.2. It is in effect a judgment revoking the resolution of the court, and only the S.C. may revise or alter them, in attempting to do so R.A. 972 violated the Constitution.3. That congress has exceeded its power to repeal, alter, and supplement the rules on admission to the bar (since the rules made by congress must elevate the profession, and those rules promulgated are considered the bare minimum.)4. It is a class legislation5. Art. 2 of R.A. 972 is not embraced in the title of the law, contrary to what the constitution enjoins, and being inseparable from the provisions of art. 1, the entire law is void. HELD: Under the authority of the court:1. That the portion of art. 1 of R.A. 972 referring to the examinations of 1946 to 1952 and all of art. 2 of the said law are unconstitutional and therefore void and w/o force and effect.2. The part of ART 1 that

refers to the examinations subsequent to the approval of the law (1953- 1955) is valid and shall continue in force. (those petitions by the candidates who failed the bar from 1946 to 1952are denied, and all the candidates who in the examination of 1953 obtained a GEN Ave. of 71.5% w/o getting a grade of below 50% in any subject are considered as having passed whether they have filed petitions for admissions or not.)

b. ATTY. VINCENTE RAUL ALMACEN G.R.No. L-27654 February 18, 1970FACTS: IN THE MATTER OF PREOCEEDINGS FOR DISCIPLINARY ACTION AGAINST Before us is Atty. Vicente Raul Almacen's "Petition to Surrender Lawyer's Certificate of Title," filed on September 25, 1967, in protest against what he therein asserts is "a great injustice committed against his client by this Supreme Court." He indicts this Court, in his own phrase, as a tribunal "peopled by men who are calloused to our pleas for justice, who ignore without reasons their own applicable decisions and commit culpable violations of the Constitution with impunity." His client's he continues, who was deeply aggrieved by this Court's "unjust judgment," has become "one of the sacrificial victims before the altar of hypocrisy." In the same breath that he alludes to the classic symbol of justice, he ridicules the members of this Court, saying "that justice as administered by the present members of the Supreme Court is not only blind, but also deaf and dumb." He then vows to argue the cause of his client "in the people's forum," so that "the people may know of the silent injustice's committed by this Court," and that "whatever mistakes, wrongs and injustices that were committed must never be repeated." He ends his petition with a prayer that... a resolution issue ordering the Clerk of Court to receive the certificate of the undersigned attorney and counsellor-at-law IN TRUST with reservation that at any time in the future and in the event we regain our faith and confidence, we may retrieve our title to assume the practice of the noblest profession. ISSUE: Whether Atty. Vicente Raul Almacen must surrender his Lawyer’s Certificate of Title. RULING: ACCORDINGLY, IT IS THE SENSE of the Court that Atty. Vicente Raul Almacen be, as he is hereby, suspended from the practice of law until further orders, the suspension to take effect immediately.

b. Requirement 1. Letter of Atty. Mendoza BM no. 1153 March 9 2010EN BANC[B.M. No. 1153, March 09, 2010] RE: LETTER OF ATTY. ESTELITO P. MENDOZA PROPOSING REFORMS IN THE BAR EXAMINATIONS THROUGH AMENDMENTS TO RULE 138 OF THE RULES OF COURT Sirs/Mesdames: Quoted hereunder, for your information; is a resolution of the ; Court En Banc dated B.M. No. 1153 (Re: Letter of Atty. Estelito P. Mendoza Proposing Reforms in the Bar Examinations Through Amendments to Rule 138 of the Rules of Court).- The Court Resolved to the proposed amendments to Sections 5 and 6 of Rule 138, to wit SEC. 5.Additional requirement for other applicants.- All applicants for admission other than those referred to in the two preceding sections shall, before being admitted to the examination, satisfactorily show that they have successfully completed all the prescribed courses for the degree of Bachelor of Laws or its equivalent degree, in a law school or university officially recognized by the Philippine Government or by the proper authority in the foreign jurisdiction where the degree has been granted. No applicant who obtained the

Bachelor of Laws degree in this jurisdiction shall be admitted to the bar examination unless he or she has satisfactorily completed the following course in a law school or university duly recognized by the government: civil law, commercial law, remedial law, criminal law, public and private international law, political law, labor and social legislation, medical jurisprudence, taxation and legal ethics. A Filipino citizen who graduated from a foreign law school shall be admitted to the bar examination only upon submission to the Supreme Court of certifications showing: (a) completion of all courses leading to the degree of Bachelor of Laws or its equivalent degree; (b) recognition or accreditation of the law school by the proper authority; and (c) completion of all the fourth year subjects in the Bachelor of Laws academic program in a law school duly recognized by the Philippine Government. SEC. 6. Pre-Law. - An applicant for admission to the bar examination shall present a certificate issued by the proper government agency that, before commencing the study of law, he or she had pursued and satisfactorily completed in an authorized and recognized university or college, requiring for admission thereto the completion of a four-year high school course, the course of study prescribed therein for a bachelor's degree in arts or sciences. A Filipino citizen who completed and obtained his or her Bachelor of Laws degree or its equivalent in a foreign law school must present proof of having completed a separate bachelor's degree course. The Clerk of Court, through the Office of the Bar Confidant, is hereby directed to this resolution among all law schools in the country." Very truly yours, MA.LUISA D. VILLARAMA\--Re: 1999 Bar Examination.

c. Attorney's Roll Defined: PANGAN v. RAMOS AM 1053 Sept 7 1979 A.M. No. 1053 September 7, 1979SANTA PANGAN, complainant vs. ATTY. DIONISIO RAMOS, respondent, R E S O L U T I O NANTONIO, J.: This has reference to the motion of complainant, Santa Pangan, to cite respondent Dionisio Ramos for contempt. It appears from the record that on September 7, 1978 and March 13, 1979, the hearings in this administrative case were postponed on the basis of respondent's motions for postponement. These motions were predicated on respondent's allegations that on said dates he had a case set for hearing before Branch VII, Court of First Instance of Manila, entitled People v. Marieta M. Isip (Criminal Case No. 35906). Upon verification, the attorney of record of the accused in said case is one "Atty. Pedro D.D. Ramos, 306 Dona Salud Bldg., Dasmarinas Manila." Respondent admits that he used the name of "Pedro D.D. Ramos" before said court in connection with Criminal Case No. 35906, but avers that he had a right to do so because in his Birth Certificate (Annex "A"), his name is "Pedro Dionisio Ramos", and -his parents are Pedro Ramosand Carmen Dayaw, and that the D.D. in "Pedro D.D. Ramos" is but an abbreviation of "Dionisio Dayaw his other given name and maternal surname. This explanation of respondent is untenable. The name appearing in the "Roll of Attorneys" is "Dionisio D. Ramos". The attorney's roll or register is the official record containing the names and signatures of those who are authorized to practice law. A lawyer is not authorized to use a name other than the one inscribed in the Roll of Attorneys in his practice of law. The official oath obliges the attorney solemnly to swear that he will do no falsehood". As an officer in the temple of justice, an attorney has irrefragable obligations of "truthfulness, candor and frankness". 1 Indeed, candor and frankness should characterize the conduct of the lawyer at every stage. This has to be so because the court has the right to rely upon him in ascertaining the truth. In representing himself to the court as "Pedro D.D. Ramos" instead of "Dionisio D. Ramos", respondent has violated his solemn oath. The duty of an attorney to the courts to employ, for the purpose of maintaining the causes confided to him, such means as are consistent with truth and honor cannot be over empahisized. These injunctions circumscribe the general duty of entire devotion of the attorney to the client. As stated in a case, his high vocation is to correctly inform the court upon the law and the facts of the case, and to aid it in doing justice and arriving at correct conclusions. He violates the oath of office, when he resorts to

deception or permits his client to do so." 2 In using the name of' Pedro D.D. Ramos" before the courts instead of the name by which he was authorized to practice law - Dionisio D. Ramos - respondent in effect resorted to deception. The demonstrated lack of candor in dealing with the courts. The circumstance that this is his first aberration in this regard precludes Us from imposing a more severe penalty. WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, respondent Dionisio D. Ramos is severely REPRIMANDED and warned that arepetition of the same overt act may warrant his suspencion or disbarment from the practice of law. It appearing that the hearing of this case has been unduly delayed, the Investigator of this Court is directed forthwith to proceed with the hearing to terminate it as soon as possible. The request of complainant to appear in the afore-mentioned hearing, assisted by her counsel, Atty. Jose U. Lontoc, is hereby granted. SO ORDERED Barredo, (Chairman),Concepcion Jr. and Abad Santos, JJ., concur. Aquino, J., concur in the result. Santos, is on leave.

3. Characteristics B.M. 712 JULY 13 1995 (SEE) BM MARCH 19 1997 (SEE)

IN RE: EDILLON In the Matter of the IBP Membership Dues Delinquency of Atty. MARCIAL A. EDILION A.M. No. 1928 August 3, 1978 Facts: The respondent Marcial A. Edillon is a duly licensed practicing attorney in the Philippines. The IBP Board of Governorsrecommended to the Court the removal of the name of the respondent from its Roll of Attorneys for ―stubborn refusal topay his membership dues‖ to the IBP since the latter’s constitution notwithstanding due notice.Edilion contends that the provision providing for the IBP dues constitute an invasion of his constitutional rights in thesense that he is being compelled, as a pre-condition to maintaining his status as a lawyer in good standing, to be amember of the IBP and to pay the corresponding dues, and that as a consequence of this compelled financial support of the said organization to which he is admittedly personally antagonistic, he is being deprived of the rights to liberty and property guaranteed to him by the Constitution. Hence, the respondent concludes, the above provisions of the Court Rule and of the IBP By-Laws are void and of no legal force and effect. Issue: WON the payment of IBP dues suffers constitutional infirmity? NO Held: All legislation directing the integration of the Bar have been uniformly and universally sustained as a valid exercise of the police power over an important profession

b. A profession not a business 1. Ulep vs Legal Clinic Inc.

2. Cleto Docena vs. Atty. Dominador Q. Limon (295 SCRA 262) – Lawyer Unlawful Conduct Facts: Respondent was petitioner’s lawyer in a civil case. During that case, he asked the petitioners to post a supersede as bond to stay execution of the appealed decision. Petitioners forwarded the money to Limon. Later, the case was decided in their favor. They were unable to recover the money because the clerk of court said no such bond had ever been filed. IBP suspended him for one year. Hence this petition. Held: Disbarred (see Canon 1.01 and 16.01). Respondent’s allegation that the money was payment of his fees was overcome by other evidence. The law is not a trade nor craft but a profession. Its basic ideal is to render public service and to secure justice for those who seek its aid. If it has to remain an honorable profession and attain its basic ideal, lawyers should not only master its tenets and principles but should also, by their lives, accord continuing fidelity to them. By extorting money from his client through deceit, Limon has sullied the integrity of his brethren in the law and has indirectly e roded the people’s confidence in the judicial system. He is disbarred for immoral, deceitful and unlawful conduct.

IV. Party Litigant 2. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. SIMPLICIO VILLANUEVA, defendant-appellant. G.R. No. L-19450 Office of the Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. Magno T. Buese for defendant-appellant. Paredes, J.: On September 4, 1959, the Chief of Police of Alaminos, Laguna, charged Simplicio Villanueva with the Crime of Malicious Mischief before the Justice of the Peace Court of said municipality. Said accused was represented by counsel de officio but later on replaced by counsel de parte. The complainant in the same case was represented by City Attorney Ariston Fule of San Pablo City, having entered his appearance as private prosecutor, after securing the permission of the Secretary of Justice. The condition of his appearance as such, was that every time he would appear at the trial of the case, he would be considered on official leave of absence, and that he would not receive any payment for his services. The appearance of City Attorney Fule as private prosecutor was questioned by the counsel for the accused, invoking the case of Aquino, et al. vs. Blanco, et al. , L-1532, Nov.28, 1947, wherein it was ruled that "when an attorney had been appointed to the position of Assistant Provincial Fiscal or City Fiscal and therein qualified, by operation of law, he ceased to engage in private law practice."Counsel then argued that the JP Court in entertaining the appearance of City Attorney Fule in the case is a violation of the above ruling. On December 17, 1960 the JP issued an order sustaining the legality of the appearance of City Attorney Fule. Under date of January 4, 1961, counsel for the accused presented a "Motion to Inhibit Fiscal Fule from Acting as Private Prosecutor in this Case," this time invoking Section 32, Rule 27, now Sec. 35, Rule 138, Revised Rules of Court, which bars certain attorneys from practicing. Counsel claims that City Attorney Fule falls under this limitation. The JP Court ruled on the motion by upholding the right of Fule to appear and further stating that he(Ful e) was not actually engaged in private law practice. This Order was appealed to the CFI of Laguna, presided by the Hon. Hilarion U. Jarencio, which rendered judgment on December 20, 1961, the pertinent portions of which read: The present case is one for malicious mischief. There being no reservation by the offended party of the civil liability, the civil action was deemed impliedly instituted with the criminal action. The offended party had, therefore, the right to intervene in the case and be represented by a legal counsel because of her interest in the civil liability of the accused. Sec. 31, Rule 127 of the Rules of Court provides that in the court of a justice of the peace a party may conduct is litigation in person, with the aid of an agent or friend appointed by him for that purpose, or with the aid of an attorney. Assistant City

Attorney Fule appeared in the Justice of the Peace Court as an agent or friend of the offended party. It does not appear that he was being paid for his services or that his appearance was in a professional capacity. As Assistant City Attorney of San Pablo he had no control or intervention whatsoever in the prosecution of crimes committed in the municipality of Alaminos, Laguna, because the prosecution of criminal cases coming from Alaminos are handled by the Office of the Provincial Fiscal and not by the City Attornev of San Pablo. There could be no possible conflict in the duties of Assistant City Attorney Fule as Assistant City Attorney of San Pablo and as private prosecutor in this criminal case. On the other hand, as already pointed out, the offended party in this criminal case had a right to be represented by an agent or a friend to protect her rights in the civil action which was impliedly instituted together with the criminal action. In view of the foregoing, this Court holds that Asst. City Attorney Ariston D. Fule may appear before the Justice of the Peace Court of Alaminos, Laguna as private prosecutor in this criminal case as an agent or a friend of the offended party. WHEREFORE, the appeal from the order of the Justice of the Peace Court of Alaminos, Laguna, allowing the apprearance of Ariston D. Fule as private prosecutor is dismissed, without costs. The above decision is the subject of the instant proceeding. The appeal should be dismissed, for patently being without merits. Aside from the considerations advanced by the learned trial judge, heretofore reproduced, and which we consider plausible, the fallacy of the theory of defense counsel lies in his confused interpretation of Section 32of Rule 127 (now Sec. 35, Rule 138, Revised Rules), which provides that "no judge or other official or employee of the superior courts or of the office of the Solicitor General, shall engage in private practice as a member of the bar or give professional advice to clients." He claims that City Attorney Fule, in appearing as private prosecutor in the case was engaging in private practice. We believe that the isolated appearance of City Attorney Fule did not constitute private practice within the meaning and contemplation of the Rules. Practice is more than an isolated appearance, for it consists in frequent or customary actions, a succession of acts of the same kind. In other words, it is frequent habitual exercise (State vs. Cotner, 127, p. 1, 87 Kan. 864, 42 LRA, M.S.768). Practice of law to fall within the prohibition of statute has been interpreted as customarily or habitually holding one's self out to the public, as customarily and demanding payment for such services (State vs. Bryan,4 S.E. 522, 98 N.C. 644, 647). The appearance as counsel on one occasion is not conclusive as determinative of engagement in the private practice of law. The following observation of the Solicitor General is noteworthy: Essentially, the word private practice of law implies that one must have presented himself to be in the active and continued practice of the legal profession and that his professional services are available to the public for a compensation, as a source of his livelihood or in consideration of his said services. For one thing, it has never been refuted that City Attorney Fule had been given permission by his immediate superior, the Secretary of Justice, to represent the complainant in the case at bar, who is a relative. CONFORMABLY WITH ALL THE FOREGOING, the decision appealed from should be, as it is hereby affirmed, in all respects, with costs against appellant. *** The Supreme Court held that the isolate appearance of City Attorney Fule did not constitute private practice within the meaning and contemplation of the Rules. Practice is more than an isolated appearance, for it consists of frequents or customary actions, a succession of facts of the same kind or frequent habitual exercise. Practice of law to fall within the prohibition of statute has been interpreted as customarily or habitually holding one’s self out to the public, as customarily and demanding payment for such services. The mere appearance as counsel on one occasion is not conclusive as determinative of engagement in the private practice of law. It is also worth noted that, it has never been refuted that City Attorney Fule had been given permission by his immediate superior to represent the complainant in the case at bar, who is a relative.

II. Cases B. Atty. Ismael G. Khan Jr. vs. Atty. Rizalino T. Simbillo Facts: Simbillo advertised himself as an ―Annulment of Marriage Specialist.‖ These advertisements appeared in the July 5, 2000 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, and further research showed that similar advertisements were published in the Manila Bulletin in August 2 and 6, 2000 and in the Philippine Star inAugust 5, 2000.In September 1, 2000, Simbillo was charged for improper advertising and solicitation of legal services, filed by Assistant Court Administrator and Chief of Public Information Office, Atty. Ismael G, Khan. Simbillo’s advertisement undermined the stability and sanctity of marriage, and violated rules 2.03 and 3.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility, and Rule 138, Sec. 27 of the Rules of Court. Simbillo professed repentance and beg for the Court’s indulgence, this rings hollow as he again advertised his services in an issue of Buy and Sell Free Ads Newspaper in August 14, 2001, and again in October 5, 2001. Issue: WON Atty. Rizalino Simbillo is guilty of violating Rule 2.03 and Rule 3.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility and Rule 138, Section 27 of the Rules of Court Rulings: Rizalino Simbillo was found to have violated Rules 2.03 and 3.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibilty, and Rule 138, section 27 of the Rules of Court, and therefore, suspended from the practice of Law for One year. Repetition of the same or similar offense will be dealt with more severely. Held: Petitioner was suspended from the practice of law for one year and was sternly warned that a repetition of the same or similar offense will be dealt with more severely Ratio: The practice of law is not a business. It is a profession in which duty to public service, not money is the primary consideration Reasoning:-Rule 2.03 - A lawyer shall not do or permit to be done any act designed primarily to solicit legal business- Rule 3.01 A lawyer shall not use or permit the use of any false, fraudulent, misleading, deceptive, undignified, self-laudatory or unfair

statement orclaim regarding his qualifications or legal services.- Rule 138, Sec 27 of the Rules of Court states: Disbarment and suspension of attorneys by Supreme Court, grounds therefore.— A member of the bar may be disbarred or suspended from his office as attorney by the Supreme Court for any deceit, malpractice, or other gross misconduct in such office, grossly immoral conduct or by reason of his conviction of a crime involving moral turpitude, or for any violation of the oath which he is required to take before the admission to practice, or for a willful disobedience appearing as attorney for a party without authority to do so.- The following elements distinguish legal profession from business:1. A duty of public service2. A relation as an ―officer of the court‖ to the administration of justice involving thorough sincerity, integrity and reliability 3. A relation to clients in the highest degree of fiduciary 4. A relation to colleagues at the bar characterized by candor, fairness, and unwillingness to resort to current business methods of advertising and encroachment on their practice, or dealing directly with their clients.- Respondent advertised himself as an ―Annulment Specialist,‖ and by this he undermined the stability and sanctity of marriage —encouraging people who might have otherwise been disinclined and would have refrained form dissolving their marriage bonds, to do so.- Solicitation of legal business is not altogether proscribed, however, for solicitation to be proper, it must be compatible with the dignity of the legal profession.

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