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Cayetano vs Monsod:
In 1991, Christian Monsod was appointed as the Chairman of the Commission on Elections. His
appointment was affirmed by the Commission on Appointments. Monsods appointment was opposed by Renato
Cayetano on the ground that he does not qualify for he failed to meet the Constitutional requirement which provides
that the chairman of the COMELEC should have been engaged in the practice law for at least ten years.
Monsods track record as a lawyer:
1. Passed the bar in 1960 with a rating of 86.55%.
2. Immediately after passing, worked in his fathers law firm for one year.
3. Thereafter, until 1970, he went abroad where he had a degree in economics and held various positions in
various foreign corporations.
4. In 1970, he returned to the Philippines and held executive jobs for various local corporations until 1986.
5. In 1986, he became a member of the Constitutional Commission.
Whether or not Monsod qualifies as chairman of the COMELEC. What constitutes practice of law?
Yes. Atty. Monsods past work experiences as a lawyer-economist, a lawyer-manager, a lawyerentrepreneur 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.
As noted by various authorities, the practice of law is not limited to court appearances. The members of the bench
and bar and the informed laymen such as businessmen, know that in most developed societies today, substantially
more legal work is transacted in law offices than in the courtrooms. General practitioners of law who do both litigation
and non-litigation work also know that in most cases they find themselves spending more time doing what is loosely
described as business counseling than in trying cases. In the course of a working day the average general
practitioner wig engage in a number of legal tasks, each involving different legal doctrines, legal skills, legal
processes, legal institutions, clients, and other interested parties. Even the increasing numbers of lawyers in
specialized practice wig usually perform at least some legal services outside their specialty. By no means will most of
this work involve litigation, unless the lawyer is one of the relatively rare types a litigator who specializes in this
work to the exclusion of much else. Instead, the work will require the lawyer to have mastered the full range of
traditional lawyer skills of client counseling, advice-giving, document drafting, and negotiation.

Paguia vs Office of the President

Petitioner Alan F. Paguia (petitioner),as citizen and taxpayer, filed this original action for the writ of certiorari to
invalidate President Gloria Macapagal- Arroyos nomination of respondent former Chief Justice Hilario G. Davide, Jr. (respondent
Davide) as PermanentRepresentative to the United Nations (UN) for violation of Section 23 of Republic Act No. 7157 (RA7157), the
Philippine Foreign Service Act of 1991. Petitioner argues that respondent Davides age at that time of his nomination in March 2006,
70, disqualifies him from holding his post. Petitioner grounds his argument on Section 23of RA7157 pegging the mandatory
retirement age of all officers and employees of the Department of Foreign Affairs( DFA) at 65. Petitioners theorizes that section 23
imposes an absolute rule for all DFA employees, career or non career.

Whether or not Hilario Davide qualifies.
The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases or litigation in court but also
embraces all other matters connected with the law and any work involving the determination by the legal mind of the
legal effects of facts and conditions.

Atty. Misael Ladaga, Branch Clerk of Court of the Regional Trial Court of Makati, appeared as counsel for and inbehalf
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 he has 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.

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. Based on the foregoing, it
is evident that the isolated instances when respondent appeared as pro bono counsel of his cousin in Criminal Case
No. 84885 does not constitute the private practice of the law profession contemplated by law.

Whether or not Atty. Ladaga, upon such several appearances, was engages into private practice?
NO 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

PRINCIPLE: 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.

In the manner of the petitions for Admission to the Bar of unsuccessful candidates of 1946 to 1953. 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
Issues: Whether RA 972 is constitutional.
HELD: NO. Section 2 was declared unconstitutional due to the fatal defect of not being embraced in the title of the Act.

As per its title, the Act should affect only the bar flunkers of 1946 to 1955 Bar examinations. Section2 establishes a
permanent system for an indefinite time. It was also struck down for allowing partial passing, thus failing to take
account of the fact that laws and jurisprudence are not stationary.
PRINCIPLE: that the ultimate power to grant license for the practice of law belongs exclusively to this Court, and the
law passed by Congress on the matter is of permissive character, or as other authorities may say, merely to fix the
minimum conditions for the license.

In re Almacen
FACTS: Atty. Almacen was the counsel of one Virginia Yaptinchay in a civil case. They lost in said civil case but
Almacen filed a Motion for Reconsideration. He notified the opposing party of said motion but he failed to indicate the
time and place of hearing of said motion. Hence, his motion was denied. He then appealed but the Court of Appeals
denied his appeal as it agreed with the trial court with regard to the motion for reconsideration. Eventually, Almacen
filed an appeal on certiorari before the Supreme Court which outrightly denied his appeal in a minute resolution.
ISSUE: Whether or not Almacen should be disciplined.
HELD: Yes. The Supreme Court first clarified that minute resolutions are needed because the Supreme Court cannot
accept every case or write full opinion for every petition they reject otherwise the High Court would be unable to
effectively carry out its constitutional duties. The proper role of the Supreme Court is to decide only those cases
which present questions whose resolutions will have immediate importance beyond the particular facts and parties
involved. It should be remembered that a petition to review the decision of the Court of Appeals is not a matter of
right, but of sound judicial discretion; and so there is no need to fully explain the courts denial. For one thing, the
facts and the law are already mentioned in the Court of Appeals opinion.
PRINCIPLE: The Constitution vests the power of controland regulation in the Supreme Court. Theconstitutional power to admit
candidates to thelegal profession is a judicial function and involvesthe exercise of discretion. Petition to that end isfiled with the
Supreme Court as are otherproceedings invoking judicial function

In re Mendoza
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

Re: 1999 Bar Examinations
The crux of the case involving Bar Matters Nos. 979 and 986 concerning Bar applicant Mark Anthony A. Purisima
stemmed from a Resolution issued by the Supreme Court on the April 13, 2000, disqualifying the applicant from

membership in the Bar after he successfully passed the previous years bar examinations. Such disqualification was
based on the declaration by the Court that Purisimas examinations were null and void for two reasons: (1) that he
failed to submit the required certificate of completion of the pre-bar review course under oath for his conditional
admission to the 1999 Bar Examinations; and (2) that he committed a serious act of dishonesty when he made it
appear in his Petition to Take the 1999 Bar Examinations that he took his pre-bar review course at the Philippine Law
School (PLS) when, as certified by the schools Acting Registrar, no such course was offered there since 1967.
HELD: YES. There was only an honest mistake with respect to the documents given to the Supreme Court for the
application for bar and He did not commit with any grave dishonesty that would amount him to be disqualified for
admittance to law.
PRINICIPLES: every applicant for admission into the practice of law, two qualifications of relevance to this instant
case the requests of educational qualifications 65 and good moral character.

Pangan vs. Ramos
A.M. No. 1053
September 7, 1979
FACTS: In 1979, a pending administrative case filed by Santa Pangan against Atty. Dionisio Ramos was delayed because Atty.
Ramos allegedly appeared before a court in Manila. When the records of the said case was checked (one which Atty. Ramos
appeared in), it was found that he used the name Atty. Pedro D.D. Ramos. In his defense, Atty. Ramos said he has the right to
use such name because in his birth certificate, his name listed was Pedro Dionisio Ramos. D.D. stands for Dionisio Dayaw with
Dayaw being his mothers surname. However, in the roll of attorneys, his name listed was Dionisio D. Ramos.
ISSUE: Whether or not what Atty. Ramos did was correct.
HELD: No. The attorneys 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. In representing himself to the court as Pedro D.D.
Ramos instead of Dionisio D. Ramos, respondent has violated his solemn oath and has resorted to deception. The Supreme
Court hence severely reprimanded Atty. Ramos and warned that a similar infraction will warrant suspension or disbarment.
PRINCIPLE: 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

In Re: Argosino
B.M. No. 712
July 13, 1995
FACTS: This is a matter for admission to the bar and oath taking of a successful bar applicant. Argosinowas previously involved
with hazing that caused the death of Raul Camaligan but was sentenced withhomicide through reckless imprudence after he
pleaded guilty. He was sentenced with 2 yearsimprisonment where he applied for a probation thereafter which was granted by the
court with a 2 yr probation. He took the bar exam and passed but was not allowed to take oath. He filed a petition to allowhim to
take the attorneys oath of office averring that his probation was already terminated. The court notethat he spent only 10 months
of the probation period before it was terminated.
ISSUE: WON Argosino may take oath of office.
HELD: The court upheld the principle of maintaining the good morals of all Bar members, keeping inmind that such is of greater
importance so far as the general public and the proper administration of justice are concerned, than the possession of legal
learning. Hence he was asked by the court to produceevidence that would certify that he has reformed and have become a
responsible member of thecommunity through sworn statements of individuals who have a good reputation for truth and who
haveactually known Mr. Argosino for a significant period of time to certify he is morally fit to the admission of the law
profession. The court also ordered that said a copy of the proceeding be furnished to thefamily/relatives of Raul Camaligan.
PRINCIPLE: The requirement of good moral character to be satisfied by those who would seek admission to the bar must of
necessity be more stringent than the norm of conduct expected from members of the general public.

B.M. No. 712
March 19, 1997
FACTS: Al Argosino passed the bar examinations of 1993. The Court however deferred his oath-taking due to his previous
conviction for Reckless Imprudence Resulting In Homicide. The criminal case arose from the death of a neophyte during
fraternity initiation rites. Argosino and seven (7) other accused initially entered pleas of not guilty to homicide charges but later
withdrew their initial pleas and upon re-arraignment all pleaded guilty to reckless imprudence resulting in homicide. On the basis
of such pleas, the trial court rendered judgment imposing on each of the accused a sentence of imprisonment of from (2) years
four (4) months and one (1) day to four (4) years. The trial court granted herein petitioner's application for probation. The trial
court issued an order approving a report submitted by the Probation Officer recommending Argosino's discharge from probation.

Argosino filed before the SC a petition to be allowed to take the lawyer's oath based on the order of his discharge from probation.
The Court then issued a resolution requiring petitioner Al C. Argosino to submit to the Court evidence that he may now be
regarded as complying with the requirement of good moral character imposed upon those seeking admission to the bar.
In compliance, Argosino submitted no less than fifteen (15) certifications/letters executed by 2 senators, 5 trial court judges, and
6 members of religious orders. He likewise submitted evidence that a scholarship foundation had been established in honor of the
hazing victim.
The SC required the attorney-father of the victim to comment on Argosino's prayer but the latter submitted the matter to the
sound discretion of the Court.
ISSUE: Whether or not a Bar-passer convict be allowed to take his lawyers oath after release?
HELD: In allowing Mr. Argosino to take the lawyer's oath, the Court recognizes that Mr. Argosino is not inherently of bad moral
fiber. On the contrary, the various certifications show that he is a devout Catholic with a genuine concern for civic duties and
public service. The Court is persuaded that Mr. Argosino has exerted all efforts to atone for the death of Raul Camaligan. We are
prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt, taking judicial notice of the general tendency of youth to be rash, temerarious and
uncalculating. We stress to Mr. Argosino that the lawyers oath is NOT a mere ceremony or formality for practicing law. Every
lawyer should at ALL TIMES weigh his actions according to the sworn promises he makes when taking the lawyer's oath. If all
lawyers conducted themselves strictly according to the lawyer's oath and the Code of Professional Responsibility, the
administration of justice will undoubtedly be faster, fairer and easier for everyone concerned.
The Court sincerely hopes that Mr. Argosino will continue with the assistance he has been giving to his community. As a lawyer
he will now be in a better position to render legal and other services to the more unfortunate members of society.
PRINCIPLE: The practice of law is a privilege granted only to those who possess the strict intellectual and moral qualifications
required of lawyers who are instruments in the effective and efficient administration o f justice.

In Re: Edillon
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
Governors recommended to the Court the removal of the name of the respondent from its Roll of Attorneys for stubborn refusal
to pay his membership dues assailing the provisions of the Rule of Court 139-A and the provisions of par. 2, Section 24, Article
III, of the IBP By-Laws pertaining to the organization of IBP, payment of membership fee and suspension for failure to pay the
Edillon contends that the stated provisions constitute an invasion of his constitutional rights in the sense that he is being
compelled as a pre-condition to maintain his status as a lawyer in good standing, to be a member 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
admitted personally antagonistic, he is being deprived of the rights to liberty and properly 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: Whether or not the court may compel Atty. Edillion to pay his membership fee to the IBP.
HELD: The Integrated Bar is a State-organized Bar which every lawyer must be a member of as distinguished from bar
associations in which membership is merely optional and voluntary. All lawyers are subject to comply with the rules prescribed
for the governance of the Bar including payment a reasonable annual fees as one of the requirements. The Rules of Court only
compels him to pay his annual dues and it is not in violation of his constitutional freedom to associate. Bar integration does not
compel the lawyer to associate with anyone. He is free to attend or not the meeting of his Integrated Bar Chapter or vote or refuse
to vote in its election as he chooses. The only compulsion to which he is subjected is the payment of annual dues. Such
compulsion is justified as an exercise of the police power of the State. The right to practice law before the courts of this country
should be and is a matter subject to regulation and inquiry. And if the power to impose the fee as a regulatory measure is
recognize then a penalty designed to enforce its payment is not void as unreasonable as arbitrary. Furthermore, the Court has
jurisdiction over matters of admission, suspension, disbarment, and reinstatement of lawyers and their regulation as part of its
inherent judicial functions and responsibilities thus the court may compel all members of the Integrated Bar to pay their annual
dues. For
PRINCIPLE: The Supreme Court in order to further the States legitimate interest in elevating the quality of professional legal
services, may require thet the cost of the regulatory program the lawyers.

Docena vs Limon
A.C. No. 2387
September 10, 1998
FACTS: Respondent was petitioners lawyer in a civil case. During that case, he asked the petitioners to post a supersedeas 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). Respondents 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 eroded the peoples confidence in the
judicial system. He is disbarred for immoral, deceitful and unlawful conduct.
Rule 1.01 - A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or deceitful conduct.
Canon 16.01 - A lawyer shall account for all money or property collected or received from the client.

Philippine Lawyers Association vs. Agrava
G.R. No. L-12426
February 16, 1959
FACTS: On may 27, 1957, respondent Director issued a circular announcing that he had scheduled an examination for the
purpose of determining who are qualified to practice as patent attorneys before the Philippines Patent Office. According to the
circular, members of the Philippine Bar, engineers and other persons with sufficient scientific and technical training are qualified
to take the said examination. The petitioner contends that one who has passed the bar examination sand 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 Directors 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 knowledge 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 also embraces all other
matters connected with the law and any work involving the determination by the legal mind of the legal effects of facts and
conditions. Furthermore, the law provides that any party may appeal to the Supreme Court from any final order or decision of the
director. Thus, if the transactions of business in the Patent Office involved exclusively or mostly technical and scientific
knowledge and training, then logically, the appeal should be taken not to a court or judicial body, but rather to a board of
scientists, engineers or technical men, which is not the case.
PRINCIPLE: Under the present law, members of the Philippine Bar authorized by this Tribunal to practice law, and in good
standing, may practice their profession before the Patent Office, for the reason that much of the business in said office involves
the interpretation and determination of the scope and application of the Patent Law and other laws applicable, as well as the
presentation of evidence to establish facts involved; that part of the functions of the Patent director are judicial or quasi-judicial,
so much so that appeals from his orders and decisions are, under the law, taken to the Supreme Court.

Marcos v. Chief of Staff
G.R. No. L-4663
May 30, 1951
Alleged that the AFP Military Tribunals unlawfully excluded MARCOS and CONDORDIA from their right to appear
as counsel on the ground that they are DISQUALIFIED/EXEMPTED/INHIBITED from SEC 17, Article 17 of the
SEC. 17: No Senator or Member of the House of Representatives shall directly or indirectly be financially interested
in any contract with the Government or any subdivision or instrumentality thereof, or in any franchise or special
privilege granted by the Congress during his term of office.
He shall not appear as counsel before the Electoral Tribunals or before any court in any civil case wherein the
Government or any subdivision or instrumentality thereof is the adverse party, or in any criminal case wherein an
offer or employee of the Government is accused of an offense committed in relation to his office
The meaning or scope of the words any court in Section 17 Article 17 of the 1935 Constitution
Who are included under the terms inferior court in section 2 Article 7.
HELD: Section 17 of Article 17 prohibits any members of the Congress from appearing as counsel in any criminal case x x x.
This is not limited to civil but also to a military court or court martial since the latter is also a court of law and justice as is any
civil tribunal. Inferior courts are meant to be construed in its restricted sense and accordingly do not include court martials or
military courts for they are agencies of executive character and do not belong to the judicial branch unlike the term inferior court
is. Another, words used in one part are to receive the same interpretation when used in other parts unless the contrary is
applied/specified. For

PRINCIPLE: SEC. 17. No Senator or Member of the House of Representatives shall directly or indirectly be financially
interested in any contract with the Government or any subdivision or instrumentality thereof, or in any franchise or special
privilege granted by the Congress during his term of office. He shall not appear as counsel before the Electoral Tribunals or
before any court in any civil case wherein the Government or any subdivision or instrumentality thereof is the adverse party, or in
any criminal case wherein an offer or employee of the Government is accused of an offense committed in relation to his
office. . . ..

[G.R. No. 51813-14]
Romulo Cantimbuhan, et. al. v. Hon. Nicanor J. Cruz, Jr.
Facts: Petitioner, Romulo Cantimbuhan, Nelson B. Malana, Robert V. Lucila, senior law students of the
University of the Philippines, members of the office of legal aid were disallowed from appearing as
counsel in a proceeding. Petitioners alleged that Respondent MTC Judge Nicanor J. Cruz, Jr., violated
Rule 134, sec. 34 of the Rules of Court. Cantimbuhan expounds that in a court of justice of the Peace,
party may conduct litigation with aid of an agent or friend appointed by person for that purpose.
Respondent, through Fiscal Leodegario C. Quilatan, counters that appearances of agent or friends of party
litigants should only be allowed where there is a scarcity of legal practice.
Issue: Is the appearance of the petitioners valid?
Held: Yes. Appearance of petitioners are allowed. Rule 137, sec. 24 of Rules of Court provides that
appearance of non-member of the Philippine Bar is authorized to appear in Inferiors Courts, and may
conduct his litigation in person or with aid of an agent appointed by him for the purpose.
[G.R. No. 154464]
Ferdinand A. Cruz v.Judge Priscilla Mijares
Facts: Petitioner Ferdinand A. Cruz sought to enter his appearance on his behalf before the RTC. He is a
fourth year law student. Respondent Judge Priscilla Mijares denied his appearance, due to his being as a
party litigant. Cruz filed against Mijares actions for the violation of Rule 138, sec. 34 of the Rules of
Court; and, another civil case due to the remark: Hay naku, masama mas marunong pa sa huwes,
ok? to inhibit the respondent Judge. Mijares held that the failure of Cruz to submit promised documents
and jurisprudence is failure to satisfy requisites or conditions of Rule 139-A, hence the appearance was
Issue: Is the denial of appearance by respondent Judge, a grave a abuse of discretion?
Held: Yes. A non-lawyer may appear before any court and conduct his litigation personally, as provided
for by Rule 138, sec. 34on a party litigants ability to conduct his litigation personallyRule 138-A on
Law Student Practice Rule, requires that a law student should successfully complete his third year of a
regular four-year law curriculum, enrolled in a recognized law schools clinical legal education program
approved by the Supreme Court.Appearance of the law student should be directly under supervision and
control of a member of the IBP duly accredited by law signed by supervising attorney. Rule 138 is not
superseded by Rule-138-A, it is only a guideline for law students to represent himself in Court.
The petitions were partially granted. The Court was ordered to admit entry of appearance in the civil case.
However, the inhibition is denied.
[A.M. No. MTJ-02-1459]
Imelda Y. Maderadav.Judge Ernesto H. Mediodea
Facts: Petitioner Imelda Y. Maderada, the Clerk of Court in 12th MCTC, charged against Judge Ernesto H.
Mediodea of the MCTC with gross ignorance of the law amounting to grave misconduct for failing to
observe and apply the Revised Rules on Summary Procedure in a civil case. On Sep. 7, 2001, a criminal
case of Forcible Entry was charged against Maderada, and was presided over by Judge Erlinda Tersol.
Due to Maderadas occupation as clerk of court, Tersol inhibited herself. During the case, the opposing
\party questions the appearance of Maderada as the cousel of herself and her co-plaintiff in the criminal
case. Respondent Judge refutes Maderadas assertion that she appeared as counsel on her own behalf
because she could not afford the services of a lawyer that it does not follow that her occupation as Clerk is

not enough to pay for the services of counsel. Furthermore, Mediodea alleges that Maderada did not
secure authority from this Court to appear as counsel, and that she failed to file her leave of absence every
time she appeared in court. OCA recommended that respondent judge be fined, however, Maderada is
also at fault for not seeking approval of the court to appear as counsel.
Issue: Is the appearance of Maderada as counsel valid?
Held: Yes. The OCA recommends Maderada to be fined for engaging in a private vocation or profession
when she appeared on her own behalf in court, the necessary implication was the she was in the practice
of law. A party has right to conduct litigation personally is recognized by law, sec. 34 of Rule 138 of the
Rules of Court. When the individuals do litigate they are not considered to be in the practice of law.
Maderada, in appearing for herself, not to the public as a lawyer nor demanding payment for ittherefore,
she cannot be in the practice of law. However, what is prohibited is, appearing as the counsel for her coplaintiff. It no longer follows the raison detre of protecting ones own rights
19. A.M. No. 08-6-352-RTC, August 19, 2009
In his query, Petitioner Atty. Buffee, who previously worked as Clerk of Court VI of RTC Branch # 81of
Romblon, questioned Section 7(b) (2) of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 6713, providing for a limitation on
public officials and employees during their incumbency, and those already separated from government
employment for a period of one (1) year after separation, in engaging in the private practice of their
profession. Petitioner contends that such law gives preferential treatment to an incumbent public
employee, who may engage in the private practice of his profession so long as this practice does not
conflict or tend to conflict with his official functions, while those who are retired, resigned, or otherwise
removed from government service is prohibited from engaging the practice of their profession within one
(1) year. Atty. Buffee engaged in the practice of law within the one year prohibition period after her
tenure in the government.
Is Atty. Buffees contention correct?
No. Section 7 of the law provides that Public Officials and employees are prohibited from engaging the
private practice of law during their tenure, except those practices that are authorized by law. The
prohibitions shall continue to apply for a period of one year after the public official or employee's
resignation, retirement, or separation from public office, except for the private practice of profession
under subsection (b)(2), which can already be undertaken even within the one-year prohibition period. As
an exception to this exception, the one-year prohibited period applies with respect to any matter before
the office the public officer or employee used to work with. The purpose of this law is to avoid any
conflict of interest on the part of the employee who may wittingly or unwittingly use confidential
information acquired from his employment, or use his or her familiarity with court personnel still with the
previous office.
[A.C. No. 5321]
Ramon A. Gonzales v.Atty. Arnez C. Alcaraz
Facts: Ramon A. Gonzales filed a case for disbarment against Atty. Arnez C. Alcaraz with grave
misconduct, abuse of authority and acts unbecoming of a lawyer. Allegedly, Atty. Alcaraz cut-offed
Gonzales at south super expressway and after confrontation sped off in front of him. Atty. Alcaraz shot
Gonzales three times, hitting him barely at the stomach. Due to Gonzales acts he was prevented from
running away and was arrested. He searched by the authorities, but bribed them with money. He also
shouted that he was a lawyer and a customs officer.
Issue: Is Atty. Alcaraz guilty of gross misconduct, abuse of authority and acts unbecoming of a lawyer?
Held: Yes. Atty. Alcaraz is guilty and suspended for a year from the practice of law. The liability of Atty.
Alcaraz stemmed from Can. 1, and a violation of a penal law. Disbarment proceedings is sui generis,
dismissal of a penal case filed by complainant does not affect the disbarment case. The misconduct

committed, despite done in private capacity is still a valid subject for disbarment. Vengeful and violent
behavior exhibited by respondent reveals his conceit and delusions of self-importance, unbecoming of a
[A.C. No. 6678]
Jocelyn A. Saquing v. Atty Noel A. Mora
Facts: Jocelyn Saquing filed a disbarment case in the office of the Bar Confidant against Atty. Noel A.
Mora for grave misconduct for allegedly conspiring with sps. Paulino and Manuela Mora, who refused to
return the contact price; who induced her to buy an unregistered parcel of land. A twin criminal case of
estaffa was also filed against Atty. Mora, for the sale of 7.828 sqm. of allegedly registered land in Jun.
2004. Atty. Mora performed a notarial act without a commission, as PAO Lawyer; prepared the Deed of
Sale of the unregistered lang. Once Saquing found out the land is unregistered, she refused to sign the
contract with representation of sps. Mora and Noel. Atty. Mora denied all allegations. The IBP Board
recommends that Atty. Mora is guilty of Rule 1.1 and punishes him with a reprimand.
Issue: Is Atty. Mora guilty of grave misconduct?
Held: Yes. Atty. Mora is guilty of violating 1.1 of Can.1, and punished with a reprimand. For a lawyer to
be disbarred there must be clear, convincing, and satisfactory evidence proving alleged misconduct.
Disbarment is reserved for the most severe form of disciplinary action. Respondent notarized the
Acknowledgement without receipt of a notarial admission, violating the rule on a lawyers responsibility
to not engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or deceitful conduct.
[A.C. 6968]
Atty. Orlando V. Dizon v. Atty. Marichu C. Lambino
Facts: Atty. Orlando V. Dizon is the Chief of the Special Operations Group of the NBI; and, Atty.
Marichu C. Lambino is the Legal Counsel of UP Diliman. During a rumble on Dec. 8, 1994, in the
campus of UP Diliman, there were two student-suspects, Francis carlo Taparan and Raymundo Narag.
They were situated in the office of Col. Bentain. Atty. Dizon requested to take the two in his custody, on
the account that the NBI was authorized to make warrantless arrests. Atty. Lambino advised against
Dizon, due to Dizons lack of a warrant of arrest. The two student-suspects are eventually indicted in
Court. Atty. Dizon filed a complaint with the IBP against Atty. Lambino for the violation of Can. 1, Rule
1.1 to 1.3 of the Code of Professional Responsibility; and, Atty. Lambino countered by charging Atty.
Dizon with the violation of Can. 1, Rule 1.1 to 1.3; Can. 6, Rule 6.1 to 6.2; and, Can. 8, Rule 8.1. The
cases were consolidated by the IBP.
Issue: Is Atty. Dizon liable for violating Can. 1, Rule 1.2 of the CPR?
Held: Yes. The NBI Charter does not warrant arrests without warrant, such power is qualified to be in
accordance with existing law and rules. Atty. Dizons persistence to arrest the suspected students without
warrant is a clear violation of Rule 1.2 of Can. 1, which holds that A lawyer shall not counsel or abet
activites aimed at defiance of the law or at lessening confidence in the legal system.
Atty. Lambinos charges were dismissed, due to the principle that UP officials objection to attempts of
arrest of Dizon is a valid resistance. PD No. 1829, sec. 1 (c) without rendering it unconstitutional, they
having a right to prevent the arrest of students at the time because their attempted arrest was illegal. The
acts of Atty. Lambino is legally justified in advising against the turnover of the suspects.
[A.C. No. 6672]
Pedro L. Linsangan v. Atty. Nicomedes Tolentino
Facts: Pedro L. Linsangan charges transgression of Can.8, Rule 8.2 against Atty. Nicomedes Tolentino.
He alleges that Atty. Tolentino stole clients by enticing them with money. Atty. Tolentino allegedly used
to work for Linsangan, and used to poach clients from Linsangan with promise of always getting a
favorable result.
Issue: Is Atty. Tolentino guilty of conduct unbecoming of lawyer?

Held: Yes. He is found guilty and is suspended for a year in violation of Rules 1.3, 2.3, 8.2 and 16.4 of
CPR Respondent clearly solicited employment. Lawyers should not lend money to his clients unless it is
at the expense of Justice. It is the duty of the lawyer to keep his independence of mind; undivided
attention to the case he is handling.
24 Khan v. Simbillo, A.C. No. 5299, August 19, 2003
Facts: Atty. Simbillo posted in an issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, an advertisement which
reads: ANULLMENT OF MARRIAGE Specialist 32-4333/521-2667. Posting as a potential customer,
Ms. Espeleta called up the number and was later on debriefed by Mrs. Simbillo stating that they can her
husband can guarantee a court decree within four to six months and that her husband charges P48,000, of
which, half is payable at the time of filing and the other half upon the rendering of the decision. Similar
advertisements were posted prior to the latest one.
Atty. Khan Jr. filed a complaint for improper advertising and solicitation of legal services against Atty.
Simbillo, in violation of Rule 2.03 and 3.01 of the CPR. In response, Atty. Simbillo raised that such
advertising and solicitation per se are not prohibited and that such practices should be allowed in this day
and age. Atty. Simbillo prayed that he be exonerated from all the charges against him and that the court
promulgate a ruling that advertisement of legal services offered by a lawyer is not contrary to law, public
policy and public order as long as it is dignified.
Issue: Is Atty. Simbillo guilty of illegal advertising and solicitation of legal business?
Held: Yes, the practice of law is not a business, but is a profession in which duty to public service,
and not money, is the primary consideration. Such gaining of a livelihood should be but a secondary
consideration. Furthermore, advertising as a self-styled Annulment of Marriage Specialist he erodes and
undermines not only the stability but also the sanctity of an institution still considered sacrosanct. Despite
solicitation of legal business is not altogether proscribed, it must be done so in a proper and dignified
manner worthy of the legal profession.
Atty. Simbillo is foundy GUILTY of violation of Rules 2.03 and 3.01 of the CPE and is
SUSPENDED from the practice of law for one (1) year. Also, he is STERNLY WARNED that a
repetition of the same or similar offense will be dealt with more severely.
Ulep v. Legal Clinic, 223 SCRA 378 [1993]
Facts: Mr. Ulep files a complaint against Legal Clinic, stating that the latter is using
advertisements that are unethical and demeaning of the law profession, and asks the court to order said
respondent to cease and desist from further issuing advertisements of the same or of similar tenor.
In response, Legal Clinic raise that they are not engage in the practice of law, but rather in the
rendering of legal support services through paralegals with the use of modern computers and electronic
machines and if they be considered as legal services, then such advertising should be allowed in
accordance to the case of Bates and Van OSteen vs. State Bar of Arizona.
Issue: Are such services considered as a practice of the law profession? And are such, a
violation of the CPE?
Held: Such practices are considered as practice of law in accordance to the definition of the
practice of law as defined in the Cayetano v. Monsod case. Taking into consideration of the nature and the
contents of the advertisement in question, which even includes a quotation of the fees, the court rules that
such does not fall into any of the allowable exceptions in the advertising of the law profession.
RE: Letter of the UP Law Faculty xxx , A.M. No. 10-10-4-SC, March 8, 2011
Facts: In the recent case of Vinuya v. Executive Secretary in which the court denied the petition
for certiorari filed by Filipino comfort women, as represented by Attys. Roque and Bagares, to compel
certain officers of executive department to espouse their claims for reparation and demand apology from
the Japanese government for the abuses committed to them by the Japanese soldiers during the World
War II.
UP law professors Catindig and Laforteza along with 35 other faculty members of the UP College of Law
together with Dean Marvic Leonen publicized Restoring Integrity, a manifesto calling for Justice Del
Castillos (the ponente in the Vinuya case) resignation. It illustrated strong dissatisfaction of Justice Del
Castillos explanation on how he cited the primary sources of the quoted portions and yet arrived at a

contrary conclusion to those of the authors of the authors of the articles supposedly plagiarized. The
opening sentence alone gives a good impression on how strongly worded the motion was. It read: An
extraordinary act of injustice has again been committed against the brave Filipinas who had suffered
abuse during a time of war. The two continued on and referred to the decision in the Vinuya v Executive
Secretary case as an act of dishonesty and misrepresentation by the highest court of the land. They went
on and alleged that Justice Del Castillo committed plagiarism and even accused the Court of perpetrating
extraordinary injustice by dismissing the petition of the comfort women as well as they even attempt to
advise the Court on how to go about the review of the case.
Issue: Should the respondents be disciplined as members of the BAR under the Code of
Professional Responsibility?
Held: All lawyers, whether they are judges, court employees, professors or private practitioners,
are officers of the Court and have voluntarily taken an oath, as an indispensable qualification for
admission to the Bar, to conduct themselves with good fidelity towards the courts.
While a lawyer is entitled to present his case with vigor and courage, such enthusiasm does not
justify the use of offensive and abusive language.
Bar Matter No. 850, 22 August 2000
Bar Matter No. 850 was promulgated by the Supreme Court on August 22, 2000 and was later on
amended on October 2, 2001. It contains the Rules on the Mandatory Continuing Legal Education for the
members of the BAR. It is effective as of September 15, 2000.
RULES of note:
Section 1. Purpose of the MCLE
Continuing legal education is required of members of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) to ensure
that throughout their career, they keep abreast with law and jurisprudence, maintain the ethics of the
profession and enhance the standards of the practice of law.
Section 1. What constitutes non-compliance
The following shall constitute non-compliance
(a) Failure to complete the education requirement within the compliance period;
(b) Failure to provide attestation of compliance or exemption;
(c) Failure to provide satisfactory evidence of compliance (including evidence of exempt status) within
the prescribed period;
(d) Failure to satisfy the education requirement and furnish evidence of such compliance within sixty (60)
days from receipt of a non-compliance notice;
(e) Any other act or omission analogous to any of the foregoing or intended to circumvent or evade
compliance with the MCLE requirements.
Section 2. Listing as delinquent member
Any member who fails to satisfactorily comply with Section 2 of Rule 12 shall be listed as a delinquent
member by the IBP Board of Governors upon the recommendation of the MCLE Committee, in which
case, Rule 139-A of the Rules of Court shall apply.
Sps. Williams v. Enriquez, A.C. No.6353, 27 February 2006.
Facts: Petitioners charge Atty. Enriquez with unlawful, dishonest, immoral and deceitful acts in
violation of the CPR. Respondent charged Marisa Williams with falsification of public documents, stating
that Williams falsified when she stated that she was a Filipino and was married to David Williams, an
American citizen. Such charges was based by Enriquez on an old repealed law.
Issue: Is respondent guilty of violating the Code of Professional Responsibility?

Held: Canon 5 of the CPR requires that a lawyer be updated in the latest laws and jurisprudence.
As a retired judge, respondent should have known that it is his duty to keep himself well-informed of the
latest rulings of the Court on the issues and legal problems confronting a client. Implicit in a lawyers
mandate is to protect a clients interest to the best of his/her ability and with utmost diligence is the duty
to keep abreast of the law and legal developments, and participate in continuing legal education programs.
Thus, in championing the interest of clients and defending cases, a lawyer must only be guided by the
strict standards imposed by the lawyers oath, but should likewise espouse legally sound arguments for
clients, lest the latters cause be dismissed on technical ground. Ignorance encompasses both substantive
and procedural laws.
Dulalia v. Cruz, A.C. No. 6854, 27 April 2007.
Facts: Susan Dulalia filed an application for a building permit for a warehouse. The permit was
not issued and she thought that this was due to the respondents who wrote a letter to Carlos Abacan, the
municipal engineer and concurrent Building Official of Meycauayan, Bulacan. In the letter, it stated that
the building in question is an unbearable nuisance that poses as an imminent danger to both respondent
and his family, due to them living in the immediate vicinity of the construction site
Juan Dulalia, (complainant) claims that Atty. Cruz opposed the application because of grudge
he had against Susan Dulalia, for objecting to Atty. Cruz marriage with Susans first cousin, Imelda
Soriano while he was still married to Carolina Agaton.was still valid and subsisting.
Issue: Is Atty. Cruz in violation of the CPR for
Marrying while still in a subsisting marriage?
Using his influence as the Municipal Legal Officer of Meycauayan to oppose in Susan Dulalias
Engaging in the practice of law while serving as the Municipal Legal Officer of Meycauayan?
Held: Yes only to the first issue, and the second and third issue were both dismissed. Cruz
appeared to be in good faith, since he was out of the country when he married Soriano abroad and there
was an assumption on his part his first wife abandoning him. Prior to his marriage to Soriano, he was not
involved romantically with any woman. However, the act still stands that he contracted a second marriage
while the first marriage was still in place and that is contrary to honesty, justice, decency and morality.
Furthermore, he is guilty of Canon 5, for he claims that he was not aware that the Family Code
was already in effect as of August 3, 1988 since he was in the United States since 1986 to 1990, but still
such ignorance of the law is not excusable according to the law. The primary duty of lawyers is to obey
the laws of the land and promote respect for the law and legal processes. They are expected to be in the
forefront in the observance and maintenance of the rule of law. This duty carries with it the obligation to
be well-informed of the existing laws and to keep abreast with legal developments, recent enactments and
jurisprudence. It is imperative that they be conversant with basic legal principles. Unless they faithfully
comply with such duty, they may not be able to discharge competently and diligently their obligations as
members of the bar. Worse, they may become susceptible to committing mistakes.
Pimentel v. Fabros, et. al. A.C. No. 4517, 11 September 2006
Facts: Pimentel files for disbarment against Attys. Fabros and Paas for unlawful, dishonest,
immoral or deceitful conduct in relation to the discharge of their duties as chairman and vice-chairman of
the provincial board of canvassers, Province of Isabella in the 199 elections. Among the complainants
allegations, he alleged that respondents were required to certify under oath of their canvassing the votes
cast for each candidate for Senator in the aforementioned elections and to certify that each entry made
was true and, and that the respondents certified a statement of votes which was actually a fraudulent
statement which had been altered and contains false and untrue entries. Such alterations cannot be
attributed to mere computation or recording error, but was ostensibly the result of a premeditated scheme
knowingly implemented by herein respondents.
Issue: Did the two violate the Code of Professional Responsibility?
Held: Yes, the court ruled that both are guilty of misconduct, with the records reflecting, as well
as the respondents admitting of the discrepancy between the questioned certificate of canvass and the
statement of votes.

As public officers, respondents failed to live up to the high degree of excellence,

professionalism, intelligence and skill required of them. As lawyers, they were found to have engaged in
unlawful, dishonest, immoral and deceitful conduct. They also violated their oath as officers of the court
to foist no falsehood on anyone. Furthermore, by express provision of Canon 6 of the Code of
Professional Responsibility, the avoidance of such conduct is demanded of them as lawyers in the
government service:
CANON 6 These canons shall apply to lawyers in government service in the discharge of their official
As lawyers in the government service, respondents were under an even greater obligation to observe the
basic tenets of the legal profession because public office is a public trust.
31 Igoy v Soriano
A.M. No. 2001-9-SC October 11, 2001
Herein petitioner is one of the petitioner in the case of Heirs of Gavino Igoy v Mactan Shangrila Hotel.
During the pendency of the case in the Court of Appeals, a friend of the petitioner introduced him to
herein respondent, a Justice of the Supreme Court. The latter was introduced to herein petitioner by his
friend to aid him in his pending case in CA, and asked for P20,000.00 from the petitioner. However the
case lost, and in turn, herein respondent Justice prepared the petitioners case for a petition for review in
the Supreme Court and asked for another P20,000.00 from the petitioner, which the latter eventually gave.
Herein respondent denies that he asked for the money involve, stating that it was gratuitously given to
him by the petitioner as a token of gratitude. Eventually he resigned from his office.
W/O respondents acts are unethical and may be subjected to disbarment
Yes. Clearly the act committed by the respondent considering his position as a senior attorney in the
Highest Court of the Land, such acts of abusing his position to serve his own interest is violative of his
code of professional responsibility as a senior attorney, particularly cannon 6.02. His acts corrupted and
has indelibly sullied his record of government service for almost 28 years, and prejudiced the integrity of
the Court.
32 Olazo v Justice Tinga
In March 1990, the complainant filed a sales application covering a parcel of land situated
in Barangay Lower Bicutan in the Municipality of Taguig. The land (subject land) was previously part of
Fort Andres Bonifacio that was segregated and declared open for disposition pursuant to Proclamation No.
2476,[4] issued on January 7, 1986, and Proclamation No. 172,[5] issued on October 16, 1987.
To implement Proclamation No. 172, Memorandum No. 119 was issued by then Executive Secretary
Catalino Macaraig, creating a Committee on Awards whose duty was to study, evaluate, and make a
recommendation on the applications to purchase the lands declared open for disposition. The Committee
on Awards was headed by the Director of Lands and the respondent was one of the Committee members,
in his official capacity as the Congressman of Taguig and Pateros. The respondents district includes the
areas covered by the proclamations.
The complainant alleges that herein respondent judge used his position and power to compel the
complainants father as well as other relatives for the sale of different land properties.
W/O the respondent judge gravely abused his position and committed acts contrary to the code of
professional responsibility?
Yes. Indeed, being a government lawyer in a public office, his acts constituted a violation of his code of
professional responsibility. Canon 6 of the Code of Professional Responsibility highlights the continuing

standard of ethical conduct to be observed by government lawyers in the discharge of their official tasks.
In addition to the standard of conduct laid down under R.A. No. 6713 for government employees, a
lawyer in the government service is obliged to observe the standard of conduct under the Code of
Professional Responsibility.
33 Royong vs Atty. Oblena,
G.R No. 376,
30 April, 1963
Facts: Josefina Royong charged respondent Ariston J. Oblena, a member of the bar, with rape.
The Solicitor General immediately conducted an investigation and found out that there was no rape, the
carnal knowledge between complainant and respondent seems to be consensual sex.In view of his own
findings as a result of his investigation, that even if respondent did not commit the alleged rape,
nevertheless, he was guilty of other misconduct. The Solicitor General made another complaint charging
the respondent of falsely and deliberately alleging in his application for admission to the bar that he is a
person of good moral character, of living adulterously with Briccia Angeles at the same time maintaining
illicit relations with the 18 year old Josefina Royong. Thus rendering him unfit to practice law, praying
that this Court render judgment ordering the permanent removal of the respondent as lawyer and judge.
Respondent filed his answer denying all the allegations in the complainant and praying that he be not
Issue: Whether the illicit relationship of respondent with Royong and the adulterous cohabitation
of respondent with Briccia Angeles warrants disbarment?
Held: Yes. Atty. Ariston Oblena was disbarred. The continued possession of a fair private and
professional character or a good moral character is a requisite condition for the rightful continuance in the
practice of law for one who has been admitted, and its loss requires the suspension or disbarment even
though the statutes do not specify that as ground for disbarment. Respondents conduct though unrelated
to his office and in no way directly bearing on his profession, has nevertheless rendered him unfit and
unworthy of his privileges of a lawyer.
34 Spouses Franklin and Lourdes Olbes vs Victor Deciembre, A.C. No. 5365, 27 April, 2005
Facts: Complainants were government employees. Through respondent, Lourdes renewed a loan
application from Rodela Loans Inc. of 10,000.00. She issued and delivered five PNB blank checks, which
served as collateral for the approved loan as well as for the future loans. Lourdes paid respondent
14,874.37 intended to the loan. Respondent filled up the blank checks entrusted to him by writing on
those checks amounts that had not been agreed upon at all and deposited the same checks which were
dishonored upon payment. Thereafter, he filed a criminal case against complainants for estafa and for
violation of BP 22. Thus, complainants filed a verified petition for the disbarment of Atty. Deciembre.
Issue: Whether respondent lawyer is guilty of gross misconduct and violation of Rule 1.01 and
7.03 of the CPR.
Held: Yes. Respondent lawyer violated Rule 1.01 and Rule 7.03 of the CPR for he seriously
transgressed by his malevolent act of filling up the blank checks by indicating amounts that had not been
agreed upon at all and despite full knowledge that the loan supposed to be secured by the checks had
already been paid. Respondent is clearly guilty of serious dishonesty and professional misconduct. He
committed an act indicative of moral depravity not expected from, and highly unbecoming a member of
the bar. Hence, he was suspended from the practice of law.
35 Samala vs Palaa, A.C. No. 6595, 15 April, 2005
Facts: Complainant was looking for a company where he could invest his dollar savings. He met
Raymond Taino, a trader-employee of First Imperial Resources, Inc. (FIRI) and legal officer Antonuitti
Palaa. Subsequently, complainant decided to pull out his investment. He sent FIRI a letter requesting
the withdrawal of his investment amounting to US$10,000 and giving FIRI 10 days to prepare the money.
On April 15, 2001, complainant asked Agustin when his money would be returned. On the same day, in
the presence of respondent, Agustin delivered to complainant a check in the amount of P574,045.09, as
the peso equivalent of complainants investment with FIRI. The said check was dishonored because it
was drawn against insufficient funds. On June 1, 2001, respondent, as legal officer of FIRI, gave

complainant P250,000 in cash and a check in the amount of P329,045.09. The check was dishonored
because it was drawn against insufficient funds.
Complainant charged Paul Desiderio of Estafa and Violation of BP 22 at MTC Makati and a warrant of
arrest was issued against Paul Desiderio. Complainant alleged that respondents act of representing
himself to be the legal officer of FIRI and his assurance that the check he personally delivered to him was
signed in his presence by FIRI Officer Paul Desiderio, when no such person appears to exist, is clearly
fraudulent and violative of the Canons of Professional Ethics. Complainant requested the Integrated Bar
of the Philippines for a thorough investigation of respondent as a member of the bar.
Issue: Whether the respondent should be penalized according to the Code of Professional
Held: Yes. Atty. Antonuitti K. Palaa is found GUILTY of violating Rule 7.03 of the Code of
Professional Responsibility and suspended from the practice of law for a period of three (3) years.
Rule 7.03 A lawyer shall not engage in conduct that adversely reflects on his fitness to practice law, nor
shall he, whether in public or private life, behave in a scandalous manner to the discredit of the legal
FIRI prohibited it from engaging in investment or foreign exchange business and its primary purpose is
to act as consultant in providing professional expertise and reliable data analysis related to partnership
and so on. Hence, it is clear that the representations of respondent as legal officer of FIRI caused
material damage to complainant. In so doing, respondent failed to uphold the integrity and dignity of the
legal profession and lessened the confidence of the public in the honesty and integrity of the same.
36 Gacias vs Bulauitan, A.C. No. 7280, 16 November, 2006
Facts: Respondent sold to the petitioner a portion of his 1, 242 square meter land located at
Tuguegarao for 322,000.00. Petitioner, upon payment of a total of 300,000.00 learned that respondent
mortgaged the said land compelling the petitioner to demand to the respondent a copy of the title of the
land purchased. Respondent was not able to produce said title and was not able to return the money.
Hence, petitioner filed a disbarment case against the respondent for dishonesty and grave misconduct.
Issue: Whether respondent acted in violation of Rule 7.03 of the CPR
Held: Yes. Atty. Alexander Bulauitan is found guilty of gross misconduct and dishonesty. Rule
7.03 of the Code provide that a lawyer shall not engage in conduct that adversely reflects on his fitness to
practice law.Respondent had shown, through his dealings with the complainant involving a tiny parcel of
land, a want of professional honesty. Such misdeed reflects on the moral stuff which he is made of. His
fitness to continue in the advocacy of law and manage the legal affairs of others are thus put in serious
37 Guevarra vs Atty. Eala, A.C. No. 7136, 1 August, 2007
Facts: Joselano Guevarra filed in 2002 a Complaint for Disbarment before the Integrated Bar of
the Philippines Committee on Bar Discipline against Atty. Jose Emmanuel M. Eala for "grossly immoral
conduct and unmitigated violation of the lawyer's oath." The cause of action steamed from respondents
adulterous relationship with the wife of the petitioner which started on the day of the wedding of the
petitioner. The adulterous relationship also caused the abandonment of the respondent of his wife and
family. Petitioner, suffering from grave emotional humiliation, filed this cause of action.
Issue: Whether or not respondent did immoral conduct, violated his oath of office, and violated
the Canons of Code of Professional Responsibility?
Held: Yes. The Supreme Court held that the case involves a relationship between a married
lawyer and a married woman who is not his wife. It is immaterial whether the affair was carried discreetly.
Respondent violated Rule 1.01 of Canon 1 which proscribes a lawyer from engaging in unlawful,
dishonest, immoral, or deceitful conduct. and Rule 7.02 of Canon 7 which proscribes conduct that
adversely reflects on his fitness to practice law. As a lawyer, respondent should be aware that a man and
a woman deporting themselves as husband and wife are presumed, unless proven otherwise, to have
entered into a lawful contract of marriage. In carrying on an extra-marital affair with Irene prior to the
judicial declaration that her marriage with complainant was null and void, and despite respondent himself

being married, he showed disrespect for an institution held sacred by the law. And he betrayed his
unfitness to be a lawyer.
38 Ng vs Alar, A.C. No. 7252, 22 November, 2006
Facts: Atty. Benjamin Alar is the counsel for the complainants in a labor case filed with the Labor
Arbiter which dismissed the complaint. In his Motion for Reconsideration with Motion to Inhibit (MRMI),
Atty. Alar used improper and abusive language full of diatribes castigating the Labor Arbiter and the
ponente of the NLRC decision. Johnny Ng, filed a disbarment case against Alar before the IBP for such
Issue: Is a lawyers misbehavior before the NLRC susceptible of the provision of the CPR?
Held: Yes. Consequently, respondent violated Canons 8 and 11 of the CPR. His actions erode the
publics perception of the legal profession. The MRMI contains insults and diatribes against the NLRC,
attacking both its moral and intellectual integrity, complete with implied accusations of partiality,
impropriety and lace of diligence. Respondent used improper and offensive language in his pleadings that
does not admit any justification. Hence,respondent has clearly violated Canons 8 and 11 of the Code of
Professional Responsibility.
39 Atty. Dallong-Galicianao vs Atty. Castro, A.C. 6396, 25 October, 2005
Facts: Atty. Dallong-Galicinao is the Clerk of Court of RTC and Atty. Castro was a private
practitioner and VP of IBP-Nueva Vizcaya. Respondent went to complainants office to inquire whether
the records of Civil Case No. 784 had already been remanded to the MCTC. Respondent was not the
counsel of either party in that case.
Complainant replied that the record had not yet been transmitted since a certified true copy of the
CA decision should first be presented. To this respondent retorted, You mean to say, I would have to go
to Manila to get a copy? Complainant replied that respondent may show instead the copy sent to the
party he represents. Respondent then replied that complainant shouldve notified him. Complainant
explained that it is not her duty to notify the respondent of such duty. Angered, respondent yelled stuff in
Ilocano and left the office, banging the door so loud. He then returned to the office and
shouted, Ukinnam nga babai! Later, complainant filed a manifestation that she wont appear in the
hearing of the case in view of the respondents public apology, and that the latter was forgiven already.
Issue: Whether the respondent violated the Canons in the CPR.
Held: Respondent is fined the amount of 10k with a warning. Respondent was not the counsel of
record of Civil Case No. 784. His explanation that he will enter his appearance in the case when its
records were already transmitted to the MCTC is unacceptable. Not being the counsel of record
respondent had no right to impose his will on the clerk of court. He violated Rule 8.02, because this was
an act of encroachment. It matters not that he did so in good faith.
His act of raising his voice and uttering vulgar invectives to the clerk of court was not only illmannered but also unbecoming considering that he did these in front of the complainants
subordinates. For these, he violated Rules 7.03 and 8.01 and Canon 8.
The penalty was tempered because respondent apologized to the complainant and the latter
accepted it. This is not to say, however, that respondent should be absolved from his actuations. People
are accountable for the consequences of the things they say and do even if they repent afterwards.
40 Reyes v Chiong Jr.
A.C. No. 5148; July 1, 2003
Complainant Atty. Reyes filed a case for disbarment against respondent Atty. Chiong
for violation of Canon 8 of the Code of Professional Responsibility wherein it states that lawyers should
treat each other with courtesy, dignity and civility. Chiongs client did not appear upon the court when
Prosecutor Salonga issued a subpoena for their preliminary investigation, the Prosecutor filed a criminal
complaint for estafa against said client. After which Chiong made an urgent motion to quash the warrant
concomitant with his filing fora civil complaint and collection for a sum of money and damages against

Atty. Reyes, Xu and the Prosecutor. Upon their confrontation, no settlement was reached. Chiong argues
that there was no disrespect impleading Atty. Reyes as co-defendant in Civil Case No. 4884 and no basis
to conclude that the suit was groundless. He argues that he impleaded theProsecutor because the criminal
investigation had irregularities due to the action of the Prosecutor to file estafa case de
spite the pendency for his clients motion for an opportunity tosubmit counter affidavit and evidence.
Did respondent violate Canon 8 of the Code of Professional Responsibility?
Yes, it was recommended by the IBP that defendants purpose of filing for the collection suit with
damages was to be able to obtain leverage against the estafa case of his client. Clearly there was no need
to implead complainant and Prosecutor Salonga because they never had any participation in the business
transactions between Pan and Xu, clearly it was for the mere harassment of the two. Chiong was
suspended for two (2) years from the practice of law and was implemented immediately
41Cambaliza v Cristal-Tenorio
A.C. 6290; July 14, 2004
Herein petitioner is a former employee of respondent in her law firm. The petitioner charged the
respondent with deceit, grossly immoral conduct, and malpractice or other gross misconduct in office.
However the case regarding deceit and grossly immoral conduct did not prosper for lack of evidence, but
the malpractice or other grossly immoral conduct in office alleging that she is engaging in the illegal
practice of law by her husband, who is not a member of the Philippine Bar and two other allegations. The
respondent contends that the petitioner is only trying to get even with her. However the petitioner decided
to withdraw the case, that she is no longer interested in pursuing the case. However the IBP still pursued
the case despite the motion to Withdraw, and found the respondent guilty of assisting authorized practice
of law.
Whether or not respondent violated the Code of Professional Responsibility
It is clear that the acts committed by herein respondent in her practice of law allowing a non-member of
the Bar to misrepresent himself as a lawyer and practice law is clearly violative of Canon 9 and 9.01 Code
of Professional Responsibility. One of the duty of a lawyer is to prevent unauthorized practice of law or
atleast not to assist to it.
42 Republic v Kenrick Development Corporation
In the case at bar it involves some parcels of land on which the respondent ordered a construction of
concrete perimeter fence around it which is located behind Civil Aviation Training Center of the Air
Transportation Office which in result dispossessed some of the ATOs prime land. Herein respondent
presented TCTs claiming ownership of the said property which is supposedly signed by a person name
Alfonso Concepcion. The Office of the Solicitor General filed a complaint against the latter and herein
respondent. The answer of the respondent was prepared and purportedly signed by Atty. Onofre Garlitos
Jr. However after thorough investigation, it was discovered that Atty. Garlitos did not sign the answer of
the respondent and instead transmitted an unsigned draft to the president of the respondent company.
W/O the code of professional responsibility was violated through the act of leaving an unsigned draft to
the hands of an unauthorized person

Yes. It is violative of cannon 9.01 wherein it is clearly contemplated that no lawyer shall delegate to any
unqualified person any task in which only a member of the bar in good standing is allowed to perform. It
is clear that the act of Atty. Garlitos in transmitting an unsigned draft to an unqualified person renders
him negligent of his responsibility as a member of the Bar because such act is a clear indication that the
said lawyer is assigning the task of signing the paper he prepared to an unqualified person.
48 Re: Suspension of Atty. Bagabuyo
Adm. Case No. 7006, October 9, 2007.
Facts: In Criminal Case No. 5144, Presiding Judge Buyser declared that the evidence presented by
prosecution proves that the crime of homicide was committed by the convicted Luis Plaza, instead of
murder. Plazas counsel then filed a Motion to Fix the Amount of Bail Bond to which the respondent
(Bagabuyo) objected on the ground that Plaza was originally charged with murder, which is non-bailable.
Judge Jose Manuel P. Tan then presided on the case and favorably resolved the Motion to Fix the Amount
of Bail Bond at an amount of Php 40, 000, to which the respondent (Bagabuyo) filed a motion for
reconsideration but was denied for lack of merit.
An article was then published in the Mindanao Gold Star Daily, entitled Senior prosecutor
lambasts Surigao judge for allowing murder suspect to bail out indicating which the respondent
(Bagabuyo) admitted to holding a press conference but refused to answer whether he made the
contemptuous statements in the article directed to Judge Tan. The trial court declared him in contempt of
court due to his refusal to answer and will be arrested by the Bureau of Jail Management and Penalogy
(BJMP) if he does not post the required bond of Php 100, 000, which the respondent duly posted.
From September October 2003, respondent (Bagabuyo) allegedly called Judge Tan an
ignoramus on the law, a liar and a dictator in radio interviews for Radio DXKS in relation to the trial
proceedings for Criminal Case No. 5144 which led to a hearing for a second contempt charge which he
neither attended nor informed the court of his absence. In a letter, Bagabuyo denied the charges thrown at
him and explained that he was merely exercising his freedom of speech and it was all without malice.
Issue: Should Bagabuyo be suspended from practicing the law?
Held: Yes. Respondent (Bagabuyo) clearly violated Rule 11.05 of Canon 11 of the Canon Code of
Professional Responsibility.

Canon 11 of the Code of Professional Responsibility mandates a lawyer to observe and

maintain the respect due to the courts and to judicial officers and [he] should insist on
similar conduct by others. Rule 11.05 of Canon 11 states that a lawyer shall submit
grievances against a judge to the proper authorities only.
Instead of directing his concerns to the proper authorities, Bagabuyo resorted to mass media (e.g.
newspaper, radio interviews) to air his grievances against Judge Tan. The Court is not against lawyers
raising grievances against erring judges but the rules clearly provide for the proper venue and procedure
for doing so, precisely because respect for the institution must always be maintained.
Respondent is also found guilty of violating Rule 13.02, Canon 13 of the Canon Code of
Professional Responsibility, which states that a lawyer shall not make public statements in the media
regarding a pending case tending to arouse public opinion for or against a party, after he made
statements in the newspaper article for the Mindanao Gold Star Daily.
Lastly, Respondent violated the Lawyers Oath as he has sworn to conduct [himself] as a lawyer
according to the best of [his] knowledge and discretion with all good fidelity as well to the courts as to

[his] clients. As a lawyer, Bagabuyo must maintain and uphold respect and dignity of the court and its
judicial officers to which he owes fidelity.
49 Agustin v Empleyo
A.C. No. 6986, March 6, 2006
Facts: Complainant, Julius Agustin, was charged for Forcible Entry with Preliminary Mandatory
Injunction and Damages in Civil Case No. B-259 for which Atty. Enrique S. Empleo acted as his legal
counsel. The case was pending in the 2nd Municipal Circuit Trial Court (MCTC) in Negros Oriental.
MCTC then issued an order that the involved parties should submit their compromise agreement within
fifteen (15) days. However, there was no compromise agreement received by the MCTC during the 15day period. Thus, the case was dismissed after four years (on August 5, 2002).
With this, Agustin filed a disbarment case against his former counsel, Empleo, saying that he
contacted or visited Empleo several times regarding the submission of the compromise agreement, but
Empleo told him that the court can wait and he is busy with other pending cases. In his defense, Empleo
denied that that Agustin contacted him regarding the submission of the compromise agreement.
According to him, the non-submission of the compromise agreement was because Agustin did not contact
him on the agreement details, stressing that counsels merely assist their clients and they do not decide in
their clients behalf.
Issue: Is Empleo liable or responsible in the non-submission of the compromise agreement to the MCTC
during the 15-day period?
Held: Yes, One of Empleos assertions is correct. It is true that as a legal counsel Empleo cannot decide
without his clients consent. However, as a lawyer, his primary duty is to assist in the speedy, correct, and
efficient administration of justice. As an officer of the court, he must see to it that cases are disposed in
the soonest possible time.
Empleo, as Agustins legal counsel, was completely aware on the pending court order that the
compromise agreement must be submitted during the 15-day period. Thus, he should have discussed with
Agustin the details of the agreement and the importance of its submission so he can make the necessary
legal action to ensure that the case will not be unduly delayed by four (4) years, which is utterly
inexcusable. Empleo was therefore reprimanded for failing to perform his duty as a lawyer and as a
member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP).
50 Javellana v Lutero
G.R. No. L-23956, July 21, 1967
Facts: On March 29, 1963 the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Jaro, Iloilo filed a detainer complaint
against Javellana with the municipal court of Iloilo City, presided by Judge Lutero. The hearing was
postponed 4 times, all at the behest of the defendant's Atty. Hautea, on the grounds that "he has not
finished his business transactions in Manila" and that "he hurt his right foot toe." The last postponement
was granted by the municipal court with the warning that no further postponement would be entertained.
The case was called for trial on August 27, 1963, neither the defendant nor Atty. Hautea was
present. Atty. Pea who was present in court verbally moved for postponement of the trial on the ground
that Atty. Hautea cannot attend trial. Plaintiff objected since there was already previous admonition of
postponement. The trial proceeded and the municipal court rendered decision for the plaintiff and against
defendant. Atty. Hautea received a copy of the decision and filed a motion to set aside judgment and for
new trial. This motion was denied.
Atty. Hautea filed petition for relief with CFI Iloilo. CFI rendered judgment dismissing the
petition. Hence, the present recourse.
Issue: Was Atty. Hautea negligent of his duty as a lawyer?

Held: The case was set for trial six times. The case was reset for hearing on August 27, 1963,
Atty. Hautea had more than a month's time to so adjust his schedule of activities as to obviate a
conflict between his business transactions and his calendar of hearings. Came August 27, and
neither he nor the appellant appeared at the trial. His absence on the latter date was not
occasioned by illness or some other supervening occurrence which unavoidably and justifiably
prevented him from appearing in court.
In our view, it was the bounden duty of the said counsel, under the circumstances, to give
preferential attention to the case. As things were, he regarded the municipal court as a mere
marionette that must ever await his pleasure. This attitude on his part is censurable as it reveals
more than just a modicum of disrespect for the judiciary and the established machinery of justice.
Complainant Olivares alleged that Vilallon's client repeatedly sued him for violations of the lease contract which
they executed over a commercial apartment in Olivares Building in Paraaque. Cases were filed in 1993, 1999 and
2004 all were dismissed. Thus case of disbarment and suspension against respondent Atty. Villalon, Jr was filed for
violation of Canon 12.02 of CPR and the rule on forum shopping. Respondent contended that he was only
performing his legal obligation as a lawyer to protect and prosecute the interest of his client. And further claims that
he could not refuse his client's request to file new case because his client was the oppressed party in the
transaction. The Commission on Bar Discipline ruled that respondent assisted Al Rasheed (client) in repeatedly
suing Olivares for the same cause of action and subject matter, thus violating Rule 12.02, Canon 12 of CPR as well
as the proscription on forum shopping.
Issue: Did Atty. Villalon violated Rule 12.02, Canon 12 of CPR in repeatedly suing Olivares for same case of action
and subject matter?
Yes. It is evident that he assisted his client in repeatedly suing Olivares despite the dismissal of first case due to lack
of interest to prosecute. Respondent should have refrained from filing second complaint against Olivares knowing
that the previous dismissal was with prejudice since it had the effect of an adjudication on the merits. The court
concludes that respondent willfully violated Rule 12.02, Canon 12 CPR which provides that a lawyer shall not file
multiple actions arising from the same cause. Obviously respondent knew the laws and tried to go around it. More
so, lawyer's fidelity to his client must not be pursued at the expense of truth and justice. Filing multiple actions
constitutes an improper conduct-- an abuse of the Court's processes. It is willful violation of his duty as attorney to
act with all good fidelity to the courts. Decision was not imposed upon him since he died, case moot and academic.
Respondents filed an action for recovery of a parcel of land against Petitioner Edrial. The case was first filed by Atty.
Lituanas, lawyer of the LAPIL Negros Oriental however, a new counsel from CLAO ( Ciizen Legal Assistance
Office) handled the case in replacement of Atty. Lituanas. After the case was repeatedly reset for hearing, postponed
and suspended; and despite notice nobody appeared. The case was dismissed by the court after it ordered for the
case submission for decision for the fourth time. Herein petitioners filed a petition to reopen the case, however it
was denied by Dumaguete RTC. They filed again in CA but CA affirmed RTC's decision. Petitioners contend that a
reversal thereof would have allowed them to complete their presentation of evidence. Hence affirming RTC's
decision, the CA allegedly violated petitioners right to due process.
Did CA err in affirming Dumaguete City RTC Order?
NO, parties who prayed for and were granted several postponements and caused repeated delays cannot ask for
reopening of the trial for the purpose of presenting additional evidence. They can no longer complain of alleged
violation of their right to due process. In fact, the Court thrice considered its Order to submit the case for
decision .Petitioners were given several opportunities to present their evidence but they squandered them. Petitioners
were intentionally seeking delay the resolution of the case because they were in physical possession of the land in
dispute. The Court is dismayed on lawyer's practice of repeatedly seeking extensions of time to file pleadings and
thereafter simply letting the period lapse without submitting any pleading or even any explanation or manifestations
of their failure. The CPR requires that lawyers, after obtaining extensions of time to file pleadings, memoranda or
briefs, shall not let the period lapse without submitting the same or offering an explanation for their failure to do so

( Rule 12.03). Morever, they should avoid any action that would unduly delay a case, impede the execution of a
judgment or misuse court processes ( rule 12.04). Petition denied.


Pacifica Millare, complainant's mother, obtained a favourable judgment from MTC which ordered Elsa
Dy CO to evacuate the premises subject of the ejectment case. Through respondent, Atty. Montero, Co
appealed the decision to RTC Abra. RTC affirmed in toto the decision of MTC, it became final and
executory on November 19, 1986. However, respondent still insisted and filed motiong arguing decision
of MTC and RTC; then filed a petition for annulment in CA; filed an opposition to the motion for
execution, and laslty filed a special civil action to which the CA denied.
Is there violation of Rule 12.02 and Rule 12.03, Canon 12 CPR?
Yes, Canon 12 of CPR requires that lawyer shall exert effort and consider it his duty to assist in the
speedy and efficient administration of justice. He cannot prosecute patently frivolous and meritless
appeals or institute clearly groundless actions. A lawyer shall not file multiple actions arising from the
same cause (Rule 12.02) and a lawyer shall not unduly delay a case, impede the execution of a judgment
or misuse court processes (Rule 12.04). With a total of six appeals, complaints or petitions all aimed to
forestall the execution the respondent showed a willful abuse of rights of recourse in his efforts to get a
favorable judgment. Respondent is suspended for one (1) year.
SANTIAGO vs Rafanan
a disbarment case was filed by Jonar Santiago, an employee of BJMP against Atty. Rafanan. It charged
Atty. Rafanan with deceit, malpractice or other gross misconduct in office; violation of Canons 1.01, 1.02
and Canons 12.07 and 12.08 of CPR. Allegations of Santiago is that Atty. Rafanan was notarizing several
documents all in violation of the notarial provisions of the revised Administrative Code. In addition,
Santiago alleged that Atty. Rafanan executed an affidavit in favor of his client and offered the same
evidence in the case wherein he was actively representing his client, hence a violation of Rule 12.08
ISSUE: Is there a violation of Canon 12?
Notarial Law is explicit on the obligation and duties of notaries public. The formalities required under Notarial Law
are mandatory and cannot be simply neglected, considering the degree of importance and evidentiary weight
attached to notarized documents. With regards to the execution of respondent of affidavit corroborating the defense
of alibi proferred by respondent's clients was allegedly violation of Rule 12.08 of the CPR which states A lawyer
shall avoid testifying in behalf of his client. Under the law is not disqualified from being a witness, except only in
certain cases pertaining to privileged communication arising from an attorney-client relationship. The reason behind
such rule is the difficulty posed upon lawyers by the task of dissociating their relation to their clients as witnesses
from that as advocates. In contradistinction, advocates are partisans -- those who actively plead and defend the cause
of others. It is difficult to distinguish the fairness and impartiality of a disinterested witness from the zeal of an
advocate. Acting or appearing to act in the double capacity of lawyer and witness for the client will provoke unkind
criticism and leave many people to suspect the truthfulness of the lawyer because they cannot believe the lawyer as
disinterested. Second, paragraph (b) of Rule 12.08 contemplates a situation in which lawyers give their testimonies
during the trial. Nonetheless, we deem it important to stress and remind respondent to refrain from accepting
employment in any matter in which he knows or has reason to believe that he may be an essential witness for the
prospective client. Furthermore, in future cases in which his testimony may become essential to serve the ends of
justice, the canons of the profession require him to withdraw from the active prosecution of these cases. Atty.
Edison V. Rafanan is found guilty of violating the Notarial Law and Canon 5 of the Code of Professional
Responsibility and is hereby fined P3,000

55 Bildner v. Ilusorio
GR No. 157384
The petitioners in this case pray that the respondents be cited for indirect contempt due to the
respondents remarks on the judges of the Court. The petitioners also added via motion dated June 5,

2003 a disbarment complaint against Atty. Manuel Singson for alleged bribery. Erlinda Ilusorio, one of
the respondents in the case, sought to get back Potenciano Ilusorio from her children. However, the
decision did not rule in favor of her, which then proceeded to file numerous motions and later on berate
the judges of the Court in her book. The disbarment case against Atty. Singson arose when he allegedly
influenced the presiding judge in the case of Ramon Ilusorio, one of the respondents, to inhibit in the case.
In the case at bar, the various motions and manifestations filed by Erlinda Ilusorio neither
contained offensively disrespectful language nor tended to besmirch the dignity of the Court. In fact, the
Court considered and ruled on each of her motions and manifestations. The Court accords Erlinda
Ilusorio the benefit of the doubt and is inclined to think that her numerous pleadings that reiterate the
same issues were bona fide attempts to resuscitate and salvage what she might have sanguinely believed
to be a meritorious case involving her marital rights.
As to the complaint for disbarment, there is a well-grounded reason to believe that Atty.
Singson indeed attempted to influence Judge Reyes decide a case in favor of Atty. Singsons client. The
interplay of the documentary evidence proves it. Significantly, Atty. Singson admitted having made
phone calls to Judge Reyes, either in his residence or office in Baguio City during the period material. He
offers the lame excuse, however, that he was merely following up the status of a temporary restraining
order applied for and sometimes asking for the resetting of hearings.
The highly immoral implication of a lawyer approaching a judgeor a judge evincing a
willingnessto discuss, in private, a matter related to a case pending in that judges sala cannot be overemphasized. The fact that Atty. Singson did talk on different occasions to Judge Reyes, initially through
a mutual friend, Atty. Sevilla, leads us to conclude that Atty. Singson was indeed trying to influence the
judge to rule in his clients favor. This conduct is not acceptable in the legal profession. Canon 13 of the
Code of Professional Responsibility enjoins it.
56 Cruz v. Salva
GR No. L-12871
The killing of Manuel Monroy happened and investigations went through. Several persons
were implicated for the murder case. However, as the late President Ramon Magsaysay ordered for the re
investigation of the case, different confessions arose. A preliminary investigation was commenced by the
respondent judge. The respondent judge then sent a subpoena to petitioner because of his alleged
connection to the crime.
Does respondent have the authority to conduct the preliminary investigation?
Yes. There was no question on his authority to conduct the preliminary investigation but his
manner of conducting is problematic. However, according to the petitioner and not denied by the
respondent, the investigation was conducted not in respondent's office but in the session hall of the
Municipal Court of Pasay City evidently, to accommodate the big crowd that wanted to witness the
proceeding, including members of the press. A number of microphones were installed. Reporters were
everywhere and photographers were busy taking pictures. In other words, apparently with the permission
of, if not the encouragement by the respondent, news photographers and newsmen had a filed day.
57 In the Matter of the Alleged Improper Conduct of Sandiganbayan Associate Justice Badoy
A.M. No. 01-12-01-SC

On November 29, 2001, Justice Badoy, aboard an ambulance, whisked himself to the
GMA Broadcast Station in Quezon City for a live interview in the news program Saksi. There, he
announced the loss of a Resolution he penned in connection with the plunder case against former
President Joseph Ejercito Estrada and others.
The media sarcastically referred to the event as a staged comedyor a television tryst.
Leading newspapers contained facetious headlines, such as Ambulance rushes Badoyto TV Station,
Whats with Justice Badoy?, and Unorthodox Behavior Analyze Badoy, Erap Lawyers ask SC.
Justice Badoy alleged that three days prior to the incident, he could not find his Resolution ordering that
former President Estrada be detained at Fort Sto. Domingo. So he requested the National Bureau of
Investigation to conduct an investigation, but to no avail. Thus, on November 29, 2001, agitated that
someone might have stolen the Resolution and claimed that he (Justice Badoy) sold it for a fee, he
decided to go to the GMA-7 Broadcast Station and report its loss, in order that the public may know he is
honest. In going there, he chose to ride in an ambulance because he felt very sick and cold, intending to
proceed to a hospital after the interview.
Is he liable for his actions?
Yes. An introspective appraisal of the ambulance incident yields reasons for this Court to
adjudge Justice Badoy guilty of conduct unbecoming a Justice.
Canon 2 of the Code of Judicial Conduct provides that a judge should avoid impropriety and the
appearance of impropriety in all activities. He should so behave at all times as to promote public
confidence in the integrity of the Judiciary. Concomitant with this is the express mandate of the Canons of
Judicial Ethics that justice should not be bounded by the individual idiosyncrasies of those who
administer it. A judge should adopt the usual and expected method of doing justice, and not seek to be
spectacular or sensational in the conduct of his court.
Justice Badoy tramples upon the foregoing judicial norms. We see no reason why he should rush to the
GMA-7 Broadcast Station just to inform the public about the loss of a Resolution. This is an internal
office incident which should not be reported to the whole nation. His claim that the Resolution might
have been stolen and sold by someone (using his name) for a fee is a wild conjecture. Not only did his
conduct give an image that he could not manage his work effectively, but it also indicated that he had
corrupt personnel. Moreover, it dragged innocent parties as possible culprits.
58 De Bumanglag vs. Bumanglag
Adm. Case No. 188
Respondent was suspended for two years due to gross immoral conduct which was decided
by the court. However, respondent sent a letter to the Assistant Executive Secretary stating that his
suspension be lifted. The court then explained to the Executive Branch the facts of the case. Also, the
respondent was being asked by the court to comment on the alleged false statements he made with regard
to his suspension.
Is the respondent liable for his actions?
Yes. Respondent served his two-year suspension, as duly noted in the Court's Resolution of
November 7, 1975. Since respondent has apologized for his "big mistake" and now appreciates that under
the fundamental principle of separation of powers enshrined in both the 1935 and 1973 Constitutions, a
decision of this Court may not be set aside by the President, the Court is disposed to view his misconduct
and/or ignorance with liberality and will administer a reprimand with warning of severe action on any
future transgressions, considering respondent's unenviable record.
59 Francisco v. Atty. Portugal
A.C. No. 6155, March 14, 2006

Complainants filed before this Court an affidavit-complaint1 on 15 August 2003 against Atty.
Jaime Juanito P. Portugal (respondent) for violation of the Lawyers Oath, gross misconduct, and gross
negligence. petitioners in G.R. No. 152621-23, collectively referred to herein as the accused) were
involved in a shooting incident which resulted in the death of two individuals and the serious injury of
another. As a result, Informations were filed against them before the Sandiganbayan for murder and
frustrated murder. complainants engaged the services of herein respondent for the accused. Respondent
then filed a Motion for Reconsideration with the Sandiganbayan but it was denied, Thereafter,
complainants never heard from respondent again despite the frequent telephone calls they made to his
Is the respondent liable under the Code of Professional Responsibility?
Yes. His gross negligence was proven by the court. Also he violated rule 14.01 of the
Code. The Court does not appreciate the offensive appellation respondent called the shooting incident that
the accused was engaged in. He described the incident, thus: "the accused police officers who had been
convicted of [h]omicide for the salvage of Froilan G. Cabiling and Jose M. Chua and [a]ttempted
[h]omicide of Mario C. Macato." Rule 14.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility clearly directs
lawyers not to discriminate clients as to their belief of the guilt of the latter. It is ironic that it is the
defense counsel that actually branded his own clients as being the culprits that "salvaged" the victim.
60 People vs. Rio
G.R. No. 90294, September 24, 1991
The accused was charged with the crime of rape. He allegedly raped her 13 year old niece in
their house. Apparently, the accused was washing dishes during that time when the young girl went to the
bathroom. Grabbing the chance that her parents are not aware, he went inside the bathroom and raped the
victim. He was convicted for the crime and he went to appeal, but later on withdrew it on the basis of his
Can the accused withdraw his appeal because of poverty?
No. The Court ordered for the accused a counsel de oficio. This right to a counsel de oficio
does not cease upon the conviction of an accused by a trial court. It continues, even during appeal, such
that the duty of the court to assign a counsel de oficio persists where an accused interposes an intent to
appeal. Even in a case, such as the one at bar, where the accused had signified his intent to withdraw his
appeal, the court is required to inquire into the reason for the withdrawal. Where it finds the sole reason
for the withdrawal to be poverty, as in this case, the court must assign a counsel de oficio, for despite such
withdrawal, the duty to protect the rights of the accused subsists and perhaps, with greater reason. After
all, "those who have less in life must have more in law." Justice should never be limited to those who
have the means. It is for everyone, whether rich or poor. Its scales should always be balanced and should
never equivocate or cogitate in order to favor one party over another.
61 Sps. Algura v. The Local Gov't Unit of the City of Naga
G.R. No. 150135
On September 1, 1999, spouses Antonio F. Algura and Lorencita S.J. Algura filed a Verified Complaint
dated August 30, 1999 for damages against the Naga City Government and its officers, arising from the
alleged illegal demolition of their residence and boarding house and for payment of lost income derived
from fees paid by their boarders amounting to PhP 7,000.00 monthly. Petitioners filed an Ex-Parte
Motion to Litigate as Indigent Litigants. Finding that petitioners' motion to litigate as indigent litigants
was meritorious, Executive Judge Jose T. Atienza of the Naga City RTC, in the September 1, 1999 Order,
granted petitioners' plea for exemption from filing fees.

Should petitioners be considered as indigent litigants who qualify for exemption from paying
filing fees?
In the case at bar, petitioners Alguras submitted the Affidavits of petitioner Lorencita Algura
and neighbor Erlinda Bangate, the pay slip of petitioner Antonio F. Algura showing a gross monthly
income of PhP 10,474.00 and a Certification of the Naga City assessor stating that petitioners do not have
property declared in their names for taxation. Undoubtedly, petitioners do not own real property as shown
by the Certification of the Naga City assessor and so the property requirement is met. However with
respect to the income requirement, it is clear that the gross monthly income of PhP 10,474.00 of petitioner
Antonio F. Algura and the PhP 3,000.00 income of Lorencita Algura when combined, were above the
PhP 1,500.00 monthly income threshold prescribed by then Rule 141, Section 16 and therefore, the
income requirement was not satisfied. However, if the trial court finds that one or both requirements have
not been met, then it would set a hearing to enable the applicant to prove that the applicant has "no money
or property sufficient and available for food, shelter and basic necessities for himself and his family." In
that hearing, the adverse party may adduce countervailing evidence to disprove the evidence presented by
the applicant; after which the trial court will rule on the application depending on the evidence
adduced. When the application does not satisfy one or both requirements, then the application should not
be denied outright; instead, the court should apply the "indigency test" under Section 21 of Rule 3 and use
its sound discretion in determining the merits of the prayer for exemption. Access to justice by the
impoverished is held sacrosanct under Article III, Section 11 of the 1987 Constitution.
62 Ledesma v Climaco
G.R. No. L-23815, June 28, 1974
Petitioner was appointed Election Registrar for the Municipality of Cadiz, Province of
Negros Occidental. As he was counsel de parte for one of the accused in a case pending the sala of
respondent judge, he filed a motion to withdraw as such. Respondent judge denied his motion and also
appointed him as counsel de oficio for 2 defendants. Petitioner filed an urgent motion to be allowed to
withdraw as counsel de oficio because the COMELEC requires full time service as well as on the volume
or pressure of work of petitioner, which could prevent him from handling the case adequately.
Respondent judge denied the motion. Petitioner then instituted this certiorari proceeding.
Issue: Can petitioner be allowed to withdraw as counsel de oficio?
Held: No. There was no incompatibility between duty of petitioner to defend the accused, and his task as
an election registrar. There is not likely at present, and in the immediate future, an exorbitant demand on
his time.
Petitioners withdrawal as counsel de oficio would be an act showing his lack of fidelity to the duty
required of the legal profession. He ought to have known that membership in the bar is burdened with
conditions. The legal profession is dedicated to the ideal of service, and is not a mere trade. A lawyer may
be required to act as counsel de oficio to aid in the performance of the administration of justice. The fact
that such services are rendered without pay should not diminish the lawyer's zeal.
63 In re Filart
September 27, 1919
Facts: As the then deputy fiscal of Pangasinan, Respondent (Filart) was ordered by the court, not of his
own will, to defend the rights of thirty-seven (37) residents of Asingan who were pleading legal remedy
for their lands. However the 37 petitioners themselves filed a complaint after they were driven from their
lands and their houses destroyed as per court orders, against the respondent (Filart) for malpractice of the
law, fraud and negligence in prosecuting the appeal to the Supreme Court due to the following:

(1) failure of filing a satisfactory bill of exceptions on the statutory period of thirty (30)
days which was provided by Filart past the statutory period (a 51-day lapse after the
receipt of the notice of the denial of motion),
(2) failure to file a bond to prevent execution and
(3) assurances made by the respondent that all are taken care of,
For which the respondent (Filart) received sums of money totaling to Php 780 which he denied,
saying that he only received an amount of Php 160. Respondent (Filart) stated that he made an
oral motion to extend the period fixed by law to file the bill of exceptions, due to its length - for
which both parties agreed - and pressure of work in office, which the judge may have overlooked.
Issue: Is Filart guilty of fraud and negligence on his part?
Held: Yes, Negligence or the lack of due care is a breach of the attorney's undertaking with his client, and
is indicative of a disregard of the attorney's duties to the court. The rights of the thirty-seven (37)
petitioners were prejudiced due to the failure of the respondent (Filart) to file or to prepare the necessary
pleadings in the proper prosecution of the cause. As per the ruling in Drais vs. Hoggan ([1875], 50 Cal.,
121), although many other cases might be cited, "if a judgment is obtained against a party upon a
complaint which is radically defective, and he desires to appeal, and procures bondsmen, but his attorney
neglects to do so until the time for appeal expires, the attorney is guilty of gross negligence, and is liable
for the loss sustained by the client."
PNB vs. Cedo
Adm. Case No. 3701, March 28, 1995
Principle: A law firm maintained by lawyers, who although not partners, maintain one office as well as
one clerical and supporting staff, violate of the Code of Professional Responsibility since the clients
secrets and confidential records and information are exposed to the other lawyers and staff members
While respondent was still the Asst. Vice President of complainants Asset Management Group, he
intervened in the handling of the loan account of the spouses Ponciano and Eufemia Almeda with
complainant bank by writing demand letters to the couple. subsequently a civil action ensued between
complainant bank and the Almeda spouses as a result of this loan account, the latter were represented by
the law firm "Cedo, Ferrer, Maynigo & Associates" of which respondent is one of the Senior Partners. In
his Comment on the complaint respondent averred that he did not enter into a general partnership with
Atty. Pedro Ferrer nor with the other lawyers named therein. They are only using the aforesaid name to
designate a law firm maintained by lawyers, who although not partners, maintain one office as well as one
clerical and supporting staff. Each one of them handles their own cases independently and individually
receives the revenues therefrom which are not shared among them.
Issue: Did respondent violate the code of professional responsibility?
Yes. The court agrees with the IBP that assuming the alleged set-up of the firm to be true, it is in itself a
violation of the Code of Professional Responsibility (Rule 15.02) since the clients secrets and
confidential records and information are exposed to the other lawyers and staff members at all times.
Rosa F. Mercado vs. Julito D. Vitriolo
A.C. No. 5108, May 26, 2005
Principle: To establish the violation of the privileged and confidential lawyer-client relationship,
complainant must specify the alleged communication in confidence that was violated.

Complainants husband filed Civil Case for annulment of their marriage. Subsequently, counsel of
complainant died and re entered his appearance before the trial court as collaborating counsel for
complainant. After the civil case, respondent filed a criminal action against complainant for violation of
Articles 171 and 172 (falsification of public document) of the Revised Penal Code. Complainant Mercado
alleged that said criminal complaint for falsification of public document disclosed confidential facts and
information relating to the civil case for annulment, then handled by respondent Vitriolo as her
counsel. This prompted complainant Mercado to bring this action against respondent. She claims that, in
filing the criminal case for falsification, respondent is guilty of breaching their privileged and confidential
lawyer-client relationship, and should be disbarred.
Issue: Did respondent violate the privileged and confidential lawyer-client relationship?
No. In fine, the factors are as follows:
(1) There exists an attorney-client relationship, or a prospective attorney-client relationship, and it is by
reason of this relationship that the client made the communication.
(2) The client made the communication in confidence.
(3) The legal advice must be sought from the attorney in his professional capacity.
Applying all these rules to the case at bar, we hold that the evidence on record fails to substantiate
complainants allegations. We note that complainant did not even specify the alleged communication in
confidence disclosed by respondent. All her claims were couched in general terms and lacked specificity.
Hilado v. David
G.R. No. L-961, September 21, 1949
Principle: An information obtained from a client by a member or assistant of a law firm is information
imparted to the firm and binds every member to the same degree as if he obtained it personally
Blandina Gamboa Hilado brought an action against Selim Jacob Assad to annul the sale of several houses
and lot executed during the Japanese occupation by Mrs. Hilados now deceased husband. Attorney
Francisco entered his appearance as attorney of record for the defendant.
Attorney Dizon, in the name of his firm, wrote Attorney Francisco urging him to discontinue representing
the defendants on the ground that their client had consulted with him about her case
Issue : Should the motion for disqualification be allowed?
Yes. The defense that Attorney Agrava wrote the letter Exhibit A and that Attorney Francisco did not take
the trouble of reading it, would not take the case out of the interdiction. If this letter was written under the
circumstances explained by Attorney Francisco and he was unaware of its contents, the fact remains that
his firm did give Mrs. Hilado a formal professional advice from which, as heretofore demonstrated,
emerged the relation of attorney and client.
This letter binds and stops him in the same manner and to the same degree as if he personally had written
it. An information obtained from a client by a member or assistant of a law firm is information imparted
to the firm.
Paz v. Sanchez
A.C. No. 6125, 19 September 2006
Principle: Lawyers are deemed to represent conflicting interests when, in behalf of one client,
it is their duty to contend for that which duty to another client requires them to oppose.

Complainant and his partners, engaged the services of respondent to assist them purchase of several
parcels of land from tenant-farmers in Pampanga. The complaint arose because respondent, allegedly
after the termination of his services in May 2000, filed a complaint before the Department of Agrarian
Reform Board in behalf of one Isidro Dizon for annulment of Transfer Certificate Title No. 420127-R
against complainant and his partners. Complainant explained that Dizons property was among those
properties purchased by complainant with respondents assistance. Complainant alleged that respondent
is guilty of representing conflicting interests when he represented Dizon in a case involving the same
properties and transactions in which he previously acted as complainants counsel. Respondent
explained that he lent Dizons title to complainant and his partners enabling them to transfer the title in
their names.
Issue: Was respondent liable for violation of the prohibition on representing conflicting interests?
Yes. Rule 15.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility provides that a lawyer shall not represent
conflicting interests except by written consent of all concerned given after full disclosure of the
facts. Lawyers are deemed to represent conflicting interests when, in behalf of one client, it is their duty
to contend for that which duty to another client requires them to oppose. By respondents own admission,
when he filed the DARAB case on Dizons behalf against complainant, both complainant and Dizon were
respondents clients at that time.
Pacana, Jr. v. Atty. Pascual-Lopez
A.C. No. 8243, July 24, 2009
Principle: Documentary formalism is not an essential element in the employment of an attorney; the
contract may be express or implied
Complainant was the Operations Director for Multitel Communications Corporation (MCC).
Subsequently, MCC changed its name to Precedent Communications Corporation (Precedent). According
to complainant, Multitel was besieged by demand letters from its members and investors because of the
failure of its investment schemes. Distraught, complainant sought the advice of respondent who also
happened to be a member of the Couples for Christ, a religious organization where complainant and his
wife were also active members. From then on, complainant and respondent constantly communicated,
with the former disclosing all his involvement and interests in Precedent and Precedent's relation with
Multitel. Respondent gave legal advice to complainant and even helped him prepare standard quitclaims
for creditors. In sum, complainant avers that a lawyer-client relationship was established between him and
respondent although no formal document was executed by them at that time.
After receiving a demand letter from respondent, complainant confronted respondent, it turns out that she
was now representing the defrauded investors of Multitel. Both parties continued to communicate and
exchange information regarding the persistent demands made by Multitel investors against complainant.
On November 9, 2004, fed up and dismayed with respondent's arrogance and evasiveness, complainant
decided to file an affidavit-complaint against respondent before the Commission on Bar Discipline of the
Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) seeking the disbarment of respondent. Respondent vehemently
denied being the lawyer for Precedent. She maintained that no formal engagement was executed between
her and complainant.
Issue: was a lawyer-client relationship established between respondent and complainant despite the
absence of a written contract?
Yes. The absence of a written contract will not preclude the finding that there was a professional
relationship between the parties. Documentary formalism is not an essential element in the employment

of an attorney; the contract may be express or implied. To establish the relation, it is sufficient that the
advice and assistance of an attorney is sought and received in any matter pertinent to his profession
69Bergonia v. Merrera
A.C. No. 5024, February 20, 2003
Principle: A motion for extension to file an appellants brief carries with it the presumption that the
applicant-lawyer will file the pleading within the period granted. Failure to so file the brief without any
reasonable excuse is a violation of the Canons of Professional Responsibility. For such violation, a
lawyer may be administratively sanctioned, especially if it results in damage to the client.
Complainant filed a case for the quieting of title against the Parayno spouses. After due trial, the
Regional Trial Court promulgated its Decision in favor of the Parayno spouses. After due trial, Branch 48
of the same RTC rendered its Decision ordering complainant to vacate the premises and to surrender
possession thereof to the Parayno spouses. Thereafter, complainant appealed the RTC judgment to the
CA. Respondent, as counsel, received a Notice to File Brief. Acting on his Motion for extension to file
the appellants brief, the CA in granted it. Even before the first extension had lapsed, however, he again
filed an Urgent Second Motion for extension to file brief, praying that he be given another one. The CA
again granted his Second Motion. Eventually, the deadline, which had already been extended twice,
lapsed without his filing the appellants brief. Hence, the CA, upon motion of the appellees, dismissed
the appeal.
Issue: did respondent violate the canon of professional ethics?
Yes. Respondent claims that he never planted false hopes in the mind of complainant. Upon receiving the
Decision in Civil Case No. U-6061, he purportedly advised her that her chances of winning in the
appellate court were slim, because the ownership of the disputed land had already been adjudicated to the
other party in Civil Case No. U-4601. He avers that he tried to persuade her to accept her defeat like a
good soldier.
We are not persuaded. If, indeed, respondent failed to convince complainant to drop her appeal, he should
have just withdrawn his appearance. Based on his arguments in his Opposition to the Motion for
Execution and Demolition, however, we do not believe that he even tried to convince her to withdraw the
appeal. We are inclined to believe that this excuse was merely an afterthought to justify his negligence.
Rural Bank of Calape v. Atty. Florido
A.C. No. 5736, June 18, 2010
Principle: A lawyer must employ only fair and honest means to attain the lawful objectives of
his client
According to RBCI respondent and his clients, through force and intimidation, with the use of
armed men, forcibly took over the management and the premises of RBCI. In his comment, respondent
denied RBCIs allegations. Respondent explained that he acted in accordance with the authority granted
upon him by the Nazareno-Relampagos group, the lawfully and validly elected Board of Directors of
Issue: Did respondent violate the code of professional ethics?
Yes. The first and foremost duty of a lawyer is to maintain allegiance to the Republic of the
Philippines, uphold the Constitution and obey the laws of the land. Likewise, it is the lawyers duty to
promote respect for the law and legal processes and to abstain from activities aimed at defiance of the law
or lessening confidence in the legal system.

Canon 19 of the Code provides that a lawyer shall represent his client with zeal within the
bounds of the law. For this reason, Rule 15.07 of the Code requires a lawyer to impress upon his client
compliance with the law and principles of fairness. A lawyer must employ only fair and honest means to
attain the lawful objectives of his client. It is his duty to counsel his clients to use peaceful and lawful
methods in seeking justice and refrain from doing an intentional wrong to their adversaries
Barcenas v. Atty. Alvero
Barcenas, through her employee Rodolfo San Antonio, entrusted to Atty. Alvero the amount of
P300,000.00, which was to be given to Amanda Gasta to redeem the rights of his deceased father as
tenant of a rice field. The receipt of the money was evidenced by an acknowledgment receipt. In the said
receipt, Atty. Alvero said that he would deposit the money in court because Amanda Gasta refused to
accept the same. Barcenas then discovered that Atty. Alvero did not deposit the money in court. Instead
converted and used the same for his personal needs. Atty. Alvero promised to return the money. Despite
repeated demands, Atty. Alvero failed to return the same. Thus, Barcenas prayed that Atty. Alvero be
disbarred for being a disgrace to the legal profession. The IBP-CBD recommended that Atty. Alvero be
suspended from the practice of law for a period of one (1) year for gross misconduct. Atty. Alvero was,
likewise, ordered to immediately account for and return the amount of P300,000.00 to Barcenas and/or
Rodolfo San Antonio.
Did the respondent breached Rule 1.01 of Canon 1 and Rules 16.01, 16.02 and 16.03 of Canon 16 of the
Code of Professional Responsibility.
Yes. When a lawyer receives money from a client for a particular purpose, the lawyer is bound to render
an accounting to the client showing that the money was spent for a particular purpose. If he does not use
the money for the intended purpose, the lawyer must immediately return the money to his client. These,
Atty. Alvero failed to do. Jurisprudence dictates that a lawyer who obtains possession of the funds and
properties of his client in the course of his professional employment shall deliver the same to his client (a)
when they become due, or (b) upon demand. In the instant case, respondent failed to account for and
return the P300,000.00 despite complainant's repeated demands. As a final note, The Court reiterates:
the practice of law is not a right, but a privilege. It is granted only to those of good moral character.
The Bar must maintain a high standard of honesty and fair dealing. For the practice of law is a profession,
a form of public trust, the performance of which is entrusted to those who are qualified and who possess
good moral character. Those who are unable or unwilling to comply with the responsibilities and meet the
standards of the profession are unworthy of the privilege to practice law.

Tarog v. Atty. Ricafort
In 1992, the Tarogs sought the advice of Atty. Jaime L. Miralles regarding their bank-foreclosed property
located in the Bicol Region. They ultimately engaged Atty. Ricafort as their attorney. Having willingly
accepted the engagement, Atty. Ricafort required the Tarogs to pay P7,000.00 as filing fee, P65,000.00
in court to counter the P60,000.00 deposited by Antonio Tee, the buyer of the foreclosed property.
Spouses Tarogs and Vidal went to the office of Atty. Ricafort to deliver the P65,000.00. When Arnulfo
said that he had first to encash the check at the bank, Atty. Ricafort persuaded him to entrust the check
to him instead so that he (Atty. Ricafort) would be the one to encash it and then deposit the amount in
court. Atty. Ricafort did not deposit the amout in court and promised them to return it with interest. They
delivered another P15,000.00 for the filing of the memoranda of the case. However, Atty. Ricafort did not
use any of the money for that purpose and did not plan to give it back. Hence this appeal. His comment
in the case is that the P65,000.00 was intended to be deposited in court, insisting that the amount was
payment for his legal services under a package deal, that is, the amount included his acceptance fee,
fee, and appearance
from the
filing of the
annulment of sale until judgment, but excluding appeal.
ISSUE: Does the acts of Atty. Ricafort constitute a grave violation of the Code of Professional

Yes. The courts has held that Atty. Ricafort violated Canon 16, and Rules 16.01, and Canon 17 of the
Code of Professional Responsibility by taking advantage of the vulnerability of his clients and by being
dishonest in his dealings with them by refusing to return the amount of P65,000.00 to them and,
accordingly, disbar him. The Bar Confidant was directed to strike out his name from the Roll of Attorneys.
Atty. Ricafort was ordered to return to Erlinda R. Tarog the sums of P65,000.00 and P15,000.00, plus
interest of six percent per annum reckoned from the demand made on December 3,2002, within twenty
days from notice.

Villanueva v. Atty. Ishiwata
Atty. Ishiwata, in handling the case of Salvador G. Villanueva against J.T. Transport, Inc. for payment of
his unpaid wages, separation pay, and other benefits, ultimately received payments from J.T. Transport
of 4 checks amounting to P225,000.00 to release the latter from all its obligations to him. However, the
respondent gave complainant only P45,000 as first installment, without advising him that the settlement
award has been paid in full. Complainant then learned that J.T. transport has already settled all its
obligations to him. He then made repeated demands to the respondent to deliver to him the balance.
Ishiwata refused to comply stating that he should hire a new lawyer to send him a demand letter. The
respondent denied the charge. In his comment, complainant claims that it was actually the wife, zenaida
Villanueva, who hired his services. Due to serious ailment he acquired the services of another for
research which he paid P33,000.00 with complainants knowledge. He also claims that since J.T.
Transport paid in installments he also would pay the complainant in installments. He paid complainants
wife of P90,000.00 in two sums (P11,000 and P79,000) where the receipts issued was said to be lost by
her secretary. Deducted his 25% attorneys fee or P56,250.00 from the award. Thus leaving only P750
only as remaining payment.
Issue: Did the respondent violate Canon 16 and rules 16.01, 16.02, 16.03?
Yes, the Supreme Court has held that the respondents failure to return the balance to complainant upon
demand gave rise to the presumption that he misappropriated it in violation of the trust reposed on
him. His act is indicative of lack of integrity and propriety. His claim that he gave complainants alleged
wite the amount of P11,000 and P79,000 is not true. He could not show the corresponding receipts. A
lawyer pledges himself not to delay any man for money and he is bound to conduct himself with good
fidelity to his clients. Any money collected for the client or other trust property coming into the lawyers
possession should promptly be reported by him. A lawyer must at all times conduct himself, especially in
his dealings with his clients and the public at large, with honesty and integrity in a manner beyond
reproach. A violation of the high standards of the legal profession subjects the erring lawyer to
administrative sanctions by this court. Suspended for one year and ordered to restitute complainant the
sum of P154,500.

Vda de Caia v. Hon. Victoriano
Petitioners are the widow and children of the late Valeriana Caia who was the owner of a parcel of land
covered by TCT No. 21702. A portion of this property was transferred to one Gavina Cierte de Andal and
as a result said title was cancelled and a new one issued in their names. Respondent Flaviano Dalisay
was the attorney of Elena Peralta Vda. De Caina, in an action for ejectment. The case was dismissed
and appealed to the CFI of Rizal. Because of the non-appearance of defendant, the latter was declared
in default and judgment was rendered in favor of plaintiff. Dalisay they filed a motion in the same
ejectment case for annotation of his attorneys lien on the back of TCT, claiming that the services he had
rendered to the widow and her children who were presented by him in said case failed to pay him his
attorneys fees which he fixed at P2,020. The motion was set for hearing and thereafter the same was
granted wherein the court ordered petitioners to surrender their duplicate copy of said certificate in order
that the annotation requested may be made. Upon receipt of the copy petitioners filed a motion for
reconsideration alleging that they were never furnished with a copy of respondents motion, nor notified

of the date of its hearing, for which reason they were not able to appear to contest the same. Dalisay
contested this motion stating that the petitioners were furnished a copy via registered mail three days
before the hearing. The court denied the motion hence this certiorari.
May the attorneys lien be ordered annotated on the back of the TCT?
No, the lien which respondent attorney tried to enforce for the satisfaction of his professional fee
is charging in the sense that his purpose is to make of record his claim in order that it may be considered
in the execution of the judgment that may be rendered in the case, and this he has already done. Thus he
had already caused a statement of his claim to be entered in the record of the ejectment case and that is
all what the rule requires of him to do. The lien of respondent is not of a nature which attaches to the
property in litigation but is at most a personal claim enforceable by a writ of execution.
Note: No relation

Linsangan v. Atty. Tolentino
A complaint for disbarment was filed by Pedro Linsangan against Atty. Nicomedes Tolentino for
solicitation of clients and encroachment of professional services. Complaint alleged that respondent, with
the help of paralegal Fe Marie Labiano, convinced his clients to transfer legal representation.
Respondent promised them financial assistance and expeditious collection on their claims. To induce
them to hire his services, he persistently called them and sent them text messages. To support his
allegations, complainant presented the sworn affidavit of James Gregorio attesting that Labiano tried to
prevail upon him to sever his lawyer-client relations with complainant and utilize respondents services
instead, in exchange for a loan of P50, 000.00. Complainant also attached respondents calling card.
Respondent, in his defense, denied knowing Labiano and authorizing the printing and circulation of the
said calling card.
Is the respondent guilty of violating rule 16.04 of the CPR?
Yes. The court has held that by engaging in a money-lending venture with his clients as borrowers,
respondent violated Rule 16.04 A lawyer shall not borrow money from his client unless the clients
interests are fully protected by the nature of the case or by independent advice. Neither shall a lawyer
lend money to a client except, when in the interest of justice, he has to advance necessary expenses in a
legal matter he is handling for the client. The rule is that a lawyer shall not lend money to his client. The
only exception is, when in the interest of justice, he has to advance necessary expenses (such as filing
fees, stenographers fees for transcript of stenographic notes, cash bond or premium for surety bond,
etc.) for a matter that he is handling for the client. The rule is intended to safeguard the lawyers
independence of mind so that the free exercise of his judgment may not be adversely affected. It seeks to
ensure his undivided attention to the case he is handling as well as his entire devotion and fidelity to the
clients cause. If the lawyer lends money to the client in connection with the clients case, the lawyer in
effect acquires an interest in the subject matter of the case or an additional stake in its outcome. Either of
these circumstances may lead the lawyer to consider his own recovery rather than that of his client, or to
accept a settlement which may take care of his interest in the verdict to the prejudice of the client in
violation of his duty of undivided fidelity to the clients cause.

76 Hernandez v Go
A.C. No. 1526, January 31, 2005
Facts: Complainants husband abandoned her and her son. Her husband has a lot of debt and numerous
creditors demanded payments of his loan from her. She hired Go to settle the matter.
Go persuaded complainant to execute deeds of sale of all the properties in order for Go to sell
the lots and from the proceeds pay her creditors.
Complainant came to know that Go paid her creditors with his own money and kept the
properties. Hence, this petition for disbarment.

Issue: Did Go abuse the trust and confidence reposed in him by complainant?
Held: Yes. The records show that complainant entrusted to Go her land titles and allowed him to sell her
lots, believing that the proceeds thereof would be used to pay her creditors. Go, however, abused her trust
and confidence when he did not sell her properties to others but to himself and spent his own money to
pay her obligations.
Undoubtedly, Gos conduct has made him unfit to remain in the legal profession. He has
definitely fallen below the moral bar when he engaged in deceitful, dishonest, unlawful and grossly
immoral acts. We have been exacting in our demand for integrity and good moral character of members
of the Bar. Go is found guilty of gross misconduct and is DISBARRED from the practice of law.
77 Abiero v Juanino
A.C. No. 5302, February 18,2005
Facts: Complainant hired respondent as counsel de part in an NLRC case. Labor Arbiter ruled in favor of
complainant. On appeal, NLRC reversed the decision of the labor arbiter and dismissed the case for lack
of basis. Complainant followed up the case with respondent. Respondent would always advise him to call
on a later date as he does not have any news on the case. Respondent filed a motion for extension of time
for filing a petition for review.
Thereafter, complainant verified with CA the status of the case and he found out that there was no
petition for review filed. Consequently, the NLRC case became final and executory. Thus, complainant
filed this administrative case against respondent.
Issue: Did respondent violate Canon 17 and 18 of the Code of Professional Responsibility?
Held: Yes. As a lawyer, respondent should know that he is not required to seek prior approval from the
labor arbiter before he could file a motion for execution. Failure to appeal to the Court of Appeals despite
instructions by the client to do so constitutes inexcusable negligence on the part of counsel. Once a lawyer
consents to defend the cause of his client, he owes fidelity to such cause and must at all times be mindful
of the trust and confidence reposed in him. He is bound to protect his clients interest to the best of his
ability and perform his duties to his client with utmost diligence. For having neglected a legal matter
entrusted to him by his client, respondent did not serve his client with diligence and competence. His
inexcusable negligence on such matter renders him liable for violation of Canons 17 and 18 of the Code
of Professional Responsibility.
Dimarucot v. People
Petitioner was convicted of a criminal case for frustrated homicide in the RTC of Malolos, Bulacan. Upon
receiving the notice to file appellants brief, petitioner thru his counsel de parte requested and was
granted additional period of twenty (20) days within which to file said brief. This was followed by three
successive motions for extension which were all granted by the CA. On August 29, 2007, the CA issued
a Resolution dismissing the appeal. The petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration, his counsel
admitting that he was at fault in failing to file the appellants brief due to personal problems emanating
from his [counsels] wifes recent surgical operation. It was thus prayed that the CA allow petitioner to file
his appellants brief which counsel undertook to submit within seven (7) days. By Resolution, the CA,
finding the allegations of petitioner unpersuasive and considering that the intended appellants brief was
not at all filed denied the motion for reconsideration. The petitioner then filed an Omnibus Motion to (1)
Omnibus Motion to Reconsider, (2) to expunge the same from book of entries of judgment, and (3) To
give Accused-Appellant a final period of thirty days to file appellants brief. Citing again his personal
problems and depression and his advanced age of 76 and medical condition, attaching copies of his birth
certificate, medical certificate and certifications from the barangay and church minister.

Issue: Did the CA commit grave abuse of discretion by dismissing the petition?
No. No grave abuse of discretion was committed by the CA in considering the appeal abandoned with the
failure of petitioner to file his appeal brief despite four (4) extensions granted to him and non-compliance
to date. Dismissal of appeal by the appellate court sans notice to the accused for failure to prosecute by
itself is not an indication of grave abuse. Thus, although it does not appear that the appellate court has
given the appellant such notice before dismissing the appeal, if the appellant has filed a motion for
reconsideration of, or to set aside, the order dismissing the appeal, in which he stated the reasons why he
failed to file his brief on time and the appellate court denied the motion after considering said reasons, the
dismissal was held proper. Likewise, where the appeal was dismissed without prior notice, but the
appellant took no steps either by himself or through counsel to have the appeal reinstated, such an
attitude of indifference and inaction amounts to his abandonment and renunciation of the right granted to
him by law to prosecute his appeal. Negligence of counsel is not a defense for the failure to file the
appellants brief within the reglementary period. The right to appeal is not a natural right and is not a part
of due process. It is merely a statutory privilege, and may be exercised only in accordance with the law.
The party who seeks to avail of the same must comply with the requirements of the rules. Failing to do so,
the right to appeal is lost.
Note: No Relation

HON. COURT OF APPEALS, HON. PEDRO CASIA, as Judge of Branch 2, Tagum, Davao del Norte,
BELLO and LEOPOLDO CAGATIN, respondents.
The present petition stemmed from a complaint for damages filed on 9 December 1987 by herein private
respondents, Miguel Bagaipo, Alfredo Roa, Edgar Barrera, Bonifacio Baruis, Jr., Francisco Bello, and
Leopoldo I. Cagatin, against herein petitioners Apex Mining Corporation (hereafter APEX) and/or Engr.
Panfilo Frias and Engr. Rey Dionisio before the Regional Trial Court of Davao del Norte.
The complaint alleged in substance that sometime in November 1987, the bulldozer owned by APEX, due
to its negligence, damaged private respondents mining claim known as Tunnel T-45, thereby putting a
stop to private respondents mining operations. Respondents won in the trial Court, petitioners lawyer
then filed an appeal however it was dismissed for failure to pay the docket fees within the reglamentary
period. A writ of execution was then issued against petitioners.
Thereafter, APEX confronted its retained counsel about the matter and it was only then that APEX
learned that its appeal of the judgment against it in Civil Case No. 2131 had been dismissed by the Court
of Appeals.
On 26 February 1996, APEX and/or Engr. Panfilo Frias and Engr. Rey Dionisio, through their new
counsel, filed a Petition for Annulment of Judgment with application for the issuance of a writ of
preliminary injunction and/or temporary restraining order before the Court of Appeals. Petitioners
contended that the actuation of their former counsel constituted professional chicanery amounting to
extrinsic or collateral fraud properly warranting the annulment of the judgment of the trial court and that
by reason of said actuation of their former counsel they have been unduly deprived of their right to be
heard and to due process of law through no fault of their own.
Are the complained acts of the former counsel of the petitioners tantamount to fraud?
Petition granted.
A judgment can be annulled only on two grounds: (1) lack of jurisdiction and (2) extrinsic fraud.Fraud is
regarded as extrinsic or collateral where it has prevented a party from having a trial or from presenting all
of his case to the court. It is the kind of fraud which denied the party the opportunity to fully litigate upon
the trial all the rights or defenses he was entitled to assert.

Petitioners cannot be faulted in not inquiring into the records and status of the case. They expected that
their counsel would amply protect their interest since they were their retained counsel which handled a
majority, if not all of the cases of petitioners, including the case subject of this petition.
80. Rasmus G. Anderson vs. Reynaldo A. Cardeo
On February 16, 1985, Anderson, Jr., the petitioner, through his counsel Atty. Cesar S. de
Guzman, filed an Amended Complaint before the RTC of Binangonan, Rizal, entitled Rasmus Anderson,
Jr., Plaintiff v. Spouses Juanito Maybituin and Rosario Cerrado, et al., Defendants. During this cases
proceedings, Atty. de Guzman died, and later on was replaced by the respondent Atty. Reynaldo A.
On July 19, 1990, the petitioner filed an administrative complaint against complaint against the
respondent who allegedly caused the loss or the adverse ruling against him in the aforementioned case.
He allege that:
1.) That when the respondents in the civil case filed a Demurrer to Evidence, Atty. Cardeo did
not file an opposition thereto and did not appear at the formal hearing set for the purpose of considering
the merits of the demurrer. Thus, in addition to finding merit in the demurrer, the trial court, noting the
non-appearance of Atty. Cardeo, assumed that even he, the plaintiffs counsel, appeared convinced that
there was merit, validity and reasonableness in the demurrer filed;
2.) That after the trial court issued an Order finding the respondents demurrer to evidence
meritorious, Atty. Cardeo did not even file a Motion for Reconsideration thereof, which in turn caused
the same order to become final and executory;
3.) That even prior to the above events and in view of what the complainant perceived to be
respondent lawyers loss of interest in the case, complainant verbally told Atty. Cardeo to withdraw as
his counsel. However, Atty. Cardeo allegedly insisted on continuing to represent the complainant as the
case was already in its closing stage.
In respondents defense, he said that the complainant was uncooperative as a client. That the
records turned over to him were in disarray, and that the complainant did not disclose him certain
particulars regarding the case.
Issue: Is the defense of the respondent lawyer enough for him to still be considered as competent and
diligent lawyer.
No. The Supreme Court said that As a lawyer representing the cause of his client, he should
have taken more control over the handling of the case. Knowing that his client was based in the United
States should, with more reason, have moved him to secure all the legal means available to him either to
continue representing his client effectively or to make the necessary manifestation in court, with the
clients conformity, that he was withdrawing as counsel of record. That his client did not agree to
terminate his services is a mere allegation that has not been substantiated.
The Supreme Court added that the rule is clear in its mandate that a lawyer should not
undertake a legal service that he is not qualified to render, nor should a lawyer handle any legal matter
without adequate preparation. And the lawyer has a duty to prepare for the trial with diligence, for his
negligence will render him liable.
Also, a lawyer should never neglect a legal matter entrusted to him, otherwise his negligence in
fulfilling his duty subjects him to disciplinary action. Respondent is reminded that the practice of law is a
special privilege bestowed only upon those who are competent intellectually, academically and morally.
81. Juan v. Atty. Baria, A.C. No. 5817, May 27, 2004.
Facts: The complainant De Juan was a former client of the respondent Atty. Baria regarding a labor case
filed with the NLRC. In the said labor case, the Labor Arbiter favored the complainant, but the company
appealed to NLRC which then reversed the prior decision.
The complainant alleges that it was the respondents fault why the decision was reversed. When
she asked the respondent on what to do, the respondent said that Paano iyan ihaehhindi ako
marunong gumawa ng Motion for Reconsideration.
The respondent explained that he warned the complainant that he is just a new lawyer.

Issue: Is there any culpable negligence, as would warrant disciplinary action, in failing to file for the
complainant a motion for reconsideration from the decision of the NLRC.
Held: Yes. The Supreme Court said that no lawyer is obliged to advocate for every person who may
wish to become his client, but once he agrees to take up the cause of a client, the lawyer owes fidelity to
such cause and must be mindful of the trust and confidence reposed in him.
Also, the Court also added that a lawyer is not at liberty to abandon his client and withdraw his
services without reasonable cause and only upon notice appropriate in the circumstances. It is because
that the client is entitled to the benefit of any and every remedy and defense that is authorized by the law
and he may expect his lawyer to assert every such remedy or defense.
After complainant had expressed an interest to file a motion for reconsideration, it was
incumbent upon counsel to diligently return to his books and re-familiarize himself with the procedural
rules for a motion for reconsideration.
82. De Roy vs CA G.R. No. 80718 January 29, 1988

FACTS:Case of certiorari seeking to declare null and void the resolution denying petitioners'
motion for extension of time to file a motion for reconsideration and directed entry of judgment
since the decision had become final; and the resolution denying the petitioners' motion for
reconsideration for having been filed out of time. 15-dayperiod for appealing or for filing a
Motion for Reconsideration cannot be extended. Petitioners contend that the rule enunciated in
case of Habaluyas Enterprises Inc. vs Japon should not be made to apply to them owing to the
non-publication of the HABALUYAS decision in the Official Gazette as of the time the subject
decision of the CA was promulgated.
ISSUE: Is the petitioner's contention meritorious?
HELD: There is no law requiring the publication of Supreme Court decisions in the Official
Gazette before they can be binding and as a condition to their becoming effective. It is the
bounden duty of counsel as lawyer in active law practice to keep abreast of decisions of the
Supreme Court particularly where issues have been clarified, consistently reiterated, and
published in the advance reports of Supreme Court decisions (G. R. s) and in such publications
as the Supreme Court Reports Annotated (SCRA) and law journals.
83. Legarda vs. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 94457, March 18, 1991
Facts: The petitioner Legarda engaged in the services of her counsel (not named in the case) regarding a
case which envolves a parcel of land in question. In the said case, the counsel filed his appearance with an
urgent motion for extension of time to file the answer within ten (10) days from February 26, 1985.
However, the counsel failed to file the answer within the extended period prayed for.
The counsel of the other party filed an ex-parte motion to declare the petitioner default, which
was granted by the trial court. Later on, the trial court rendered a decision in favor of the private
respondent party. The counsel of the petitioner was given a copy of the decision, but he did not take any
action, thus, later on making the judgment final and executory.
The petitioner was abroad during the trial of the case, and as she was shocked of what happened
to her case and property, she did not lose faith in her counsel and asked the latter for appropriate action
The counsel then filed a petition for annulment of judgment and its amendment before the CA.
The latter courts judgment was rendered against the petitioner, of which the counsel was notified.
However, the counsel did not inform the petitioner about it. It was only through repeated telephone
inquiries that the petitioner learned through the counsels secretary that the judgment became final.
Issue: Is there any lack of preparation, which is violative of the Canon 18 of the CPR.
Held: Yes. The Supreme Court said that the lawyer owes entire devotion to the interest of his client,
warmth and zeal in the maintenance and defense of his rights and the exertion of his utmost learning and
ability, to the end that nothing can be taken or withheld from his client except in accordance with the law.
He should present every remedy or defense authorized by the law in support of his client's cause,

regardless of his own personal views. In the full discharge of his duties to his client, the lawyer should not
be afraid of the possibility that he may displease the judge or the general public.
84. Sambajon, et al. vs Suing 503 SCRA 1 (2006)

FACTS: Sambajon, et al. are parties to a previous labor case in which Atty. Jose Suing is the
counsel of their employer Microplast, Inc. A judgment in favor of them was rendered by the
Labor Arbiter and a writ of execution was issued against Microplast, Inc. In the meantime, the
Labor Arbiter dismissed the case insofar as the seven complainants are concerned on the basis of
individual Release Waiver and Quitclaims purportedly signed and sworn to by them. Petitioners
subsequently filed an administrative complaint alleging that respondent, acting in collusion with
his clients Johnny and Manuel Rodil, frustrated the implementation of the Writ of Execution by
presenting before the Labor Arbiter the spurious documents. A Complaint seeking the
disbarment of Atty. Jose A. Suing on the grounds of deceit, malpractice, violation of Lawyers
Oath and the Code of Professional Responsibility was also filed. During the
administrative hearings before the IBP Commissioner, it was apparent that Atty. Suing was
coaching his client to prevent himself from being incriminated. It was also revealed that the
Release Waiver and Quitclaims allegedly signed were not the same documents originally presented
to the employees to be signed.

ISSUE: Whether or not the acts of Respondent Atty. Suing is an act arguably violative of the
Lawyers Code of Ethics
HELD: Yes. In the interest of Justice, the SC gave the petition due course notwithstanding the
fact that it was filed out of time. As an officer of the court, a lawyer is called upon to assist in
the administration of justice. He is an instrument to advance its cause. Any act on his part that
tends to obstruct, perverts or impedes administration of justice constitutes misconduct. While the
disbarment of respondent is under the facts and circumstances attended to the case, not
reasonable, neither is reprimanded as recommended by IBP. Court finds respondents suspension
from practice of law for 6 months.
85. Adrimisin v. Javier, A.C. No. 2591, 08 September 2006
Petitioner filed a complaint against respondent for violation of Canon 16 and Rule 18.03 of the Code of
Professional Responsibility. Petitioner contends that respondent failed to keep his promise when the he
took the Php. 500.00 bail bond and promised the formers son-in-law will be released on bail from jail for
the crime of theft. Petitioner also contended that respondent failed to return the amount upon demand;
hence this petition.
Is Respondent guilty of violation of Canon 16 and Rule 18.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility?
Yes. The Code mandates every lawyer to hold in trust all moneys and properties of his client that
may come into his possession. Consequently, a lawyer should account for the money received from a
client. The Code also enjoins a lawyer not to neglect a legal matter entrusted to him, and his negligence in
connection therewith shall render him liable. In the present case, money for the payment of the bonds
premium was not used for the purpose intended. Hence, respondent must return the amount to
complainant upon demand. A lawyers failure to return upon demand the funds held by him on behalf of
his client gives rise to the presumption that he has appropriated the same for his own use in violation of
the trust reposed in him by his client. Such act is a gross violation of general morality as well as of
professional ethics. It impairs public confidence in the legal profession and deserves punishment.
86. Valeriana U. Dalisay vs. Melanio Mauricio, A.C. No. 5655, April 22, 2005

Facts: On October 13, 2001, Valeriana U. Dalisay, complainant, engaged respondents services as
counsel in a civil case pending before the MTC in Binangonan, Rizal. Notwithstanding his receipt of
documents and attorneys fees in the total amount of P56,000.00 from complainant, respondent never
rendered legal services for her. Thus, she terminated the attorney-client relationship and demanded the
return of her money and documents, but respondent refused.
Upon IBPs investigation, it was found out that no action had been taken nor any pleadings has
been prepared by the respondent. The only thing the respondent did was his alleged conferences and
opinions rendered when the complainant frequented his law office.
Issue: Is there any negligence regarding the legal matter entrusted by the complainant to the respondent.
Yes. The Rule 18.03 of the CPR is a basic postulate in legal ethics. When a lawyer takes a
clients cause, he covenants that he will exercise due diligence in protecting his rights. The failure to
exercise that degree of vigilance and attention makes such lawyer unworthy of the trust reposed in him by
his client and makes him answerable not just to his client but also to the legal profession, the courts and
The respondents inaction in the civil case, is a violation of Canon 17, Canon 18, and Rule
87. Peter D. Garrucho vs. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 143791, January 14, 2005
Facts: The petitioner is the then Secretary of the Department of Tourism and Chairman of the
Board of Directors of the Philippine Tourism Authority (PTA) who requested the then
Commissioner of Immigration and Deportation Andrea Domingo to issue Hold Departure Orders
against Ramon Binamira and Faustino Roberto. This was in connection with the investigation
being conducted by the DOJ involving anomalous transactions regarding government securities
affecting the PTA which entailed the loss of some P161,000,000.00. Then Commissioner
Domingo granted the request and issued Hold Departure Order against Binamira and Roberto
on the said date. Roberto requested the lifting of the order, and Secretary Garrucho opposed
the same in a Letter dated August 22, 1990.
Roberto then filed a complaint for prohibition and damages against petitioner Garrucho and
Commissioner Domingo in the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Makati City. Binamira, for his part,
filed a complaint-in-intervention in the case. Petitioner Garrucho was represented by private
practitioners Remollo & Associates, whose offices were located at Suite No. 23, Legaspi Suites,
178 Salcedo Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City.
On April 16, 1997, the trial court rendered judgment in favor of respondent Binamira. Later on,
the petitioner appealed the decision to the CA. The latter court then sent a notice through
registered mail to the petitioners counsel directing him to file his brief as appellant. However,
the notice was returned to the court. The envelope containing the said notice was stamped,
thus: Return To Sender, Moved Out. And again, the mail was returned for the second time to
CA after sending the mail to the petitioner in his office. As it was said to be unclaimed. The CA
then issued a Resolution dismissing the appeal of the petitioner for his failure to file his brief. A
copy of the resolution was sent by registered mail to the petitioners counsel, but the said
resolution was returned to the court with a notation stamped on the envelope Return To Sender,
Moved Out.The CA then had a separate copy of the notice served by registered mail on the
petitioner at his office address, but the same was returned to the CA with the notation
Later on, the filed a petition for certiorari against CA due to the fact that he never received any
resolution by the CA.
Upon investigation, it was learned that the petitioner did not receive the copies of the Resolution
and the notice because he was no longer in his office during the time it was sent. His counsel,
on the other hand, have already transferred his office in a different address which is why he
never received any copy of the notice or resolution.
Issue: Can the petitioner blame his counsel for not checking the status of his appeal in CA?

No. Supreme Court said that it is the duty of the party and his counsel to device a
system for the receipt of a change in his address. It is also the responsibility of a party to inform
the court of the change of his address so that in the event the court orders that an order or
resolution be served on the said party to enable him to receive the said resolution or order.
However, both, in this case, did not take that in consideration as they both did not inform the
court regarding their change of address to which the notices and resolutions are said to be
The petitioner has nobody to blame but himself. It was his responsibility to check the
status of his appeal in the CA from time to time, from his counsel or from the CA. Litigants,
represented by counsel, should not expect that all they need to do is sit back, relax and await
the outcome of their case. They should give the necessary assistance to their counsel for what
is at stake is their interest in the case.
The party-litigant should not rely totally on his counsel to litigate his case even if the
latter expressly assures that the formers presence in court will no longer be needed.
88. Anastacio-Briones v. Zapanta. AC No. 6226
Facts: Petitioner Estela Anastacio-Briones engaged the services of respondent to file three civil cases
involving a parcel of land located in Antipolo City. The complainant said that she showed respondent a
copy of "Discharge and Appearance of Counsels with Ex-parte Motion to Cancel the October 25, 2002
Hearing" she intended to file. Prior to the hearing, she said that she informed respondent of her joint
venture agreement with a real estate developer who offered the services of its own counsel. Complainant
added that respondent requested her not to file it and he would submit a withdrawal of appearance instead.
Complainant also informed respondent that she could not attend the hearing on January 6, 2003 because
of other commitments. Respondent allegedly assured her that he would be present in the hearing.
On the said day, both the complainant and the respondent failed to appear in the hearing
resulting to the declaration of the trial court that they have waived their right to present further witnesses
and directed them to file their formal offer of evidence within ten days from notice.
Instead of filing a formal offer of evidence, the respondent filed a withdrawal of appearance. But
five days later, the trial court dismissed the case with prejudice.
On May 5, 2003, complainant learned that the cases were dismissed and that respondent did not
attend the January 6, 2003 hearing and did not file a formal offer of evidence.
Complainant prayed that respondent be disbarred for abandoning her case and withdrawing his
appearance as counsel without her knowledge.
The respondent denied promising complainant that he would attend the January 6, 2003 hearing.
According to him, complainant informed his secretary that her new lawyer would attend. Respondent
claimed further that complainants new lawyer should be faulted for belatedly filing an entry of
appearance and a motion for reconsideration. Respondent also claimed that he was merely being used as a
scapegoat for complainants own negligence in pursuing the cases.
Issue: Is there any liability arising from the acts of the respondent?
Yes. In the Report and Recommendation of IBP, it said that the respondent is found liable for
negligence in the performance of his duties as a counsel, and for ciolating CPR.
The Supreme Court said that until a lawyers withdrawal shall have been approved, he remains
counsel of record and is expected by his client as well as by the court to do what the interests of his client
require. He must still appear on the date of hearing for the attorney-client relation does not terminate
formally until there is a withdrawal of his appearance on record.
Certainly not to be overlooked is the duty of an attorney to inform his client of the
developments of the case. We note that it was only on May 5, 2003 that complainant learned that she
defaulted in the case. As a lawyer mindful of the interest of his client, respondent should have informed
the complainant of the courts order addressed to him, especially if he considered himself discharged in
order for complainant and her new counsel to be guided accordingly.

Fernando Martin O. Pena vs Atty. Lolito G. Aparico

Respondent Atty Aparico appeared as legal counsel of Grace Hufana in a illegal dismissal case
before NLRC. In the said complaint, respondent submitted a claim for separation pay arising
from the alleged dismissal. Complainant, Pena rejected the claim thus Atty. Aparico in behalf of
Hufana wrote a demand letter. The contents of which threatened the company with the filing of
criminal cases for tax evasion and falsification of documents. Believing that the content deviated
from accepted ethical standards, complainant filed a case charging respondent with violation of
Canon 19.01.
ISSUE: IS there a violation of Canon 19.01?
Canon 19 of CPR states that lawyer shall represent his client with zeal within the bounds of law, a
lawyer is reminded that legal practitioner's duty is not to his client but to the administration of justice.
More so, Canon 19.01 of CPR commands that lawyer shall employ only fair and honest means... shall
not threaten to present unfounded criminal charges to obtain improper advantage in any case or
proceeding. In the case, respondent does not deny authorship of the threatening letter but defended that it
was just a standard practice making demand letter that would encourage settlement of disputes. However,
his defense is untenable for the threat already constitutes blackmail- the extortion of money by threats of
accusation.It is quite evident that the threat to file cases against complainant was designed to secure
some leverage to compel the latter to give his client's demands; there's an implied promise to keep silent.
The threat to file a baseless and unfounded criminal charges against complainant have nothing to do with
his client's claim for separation pay, evidently it went beyond ethical standards. Disbarment is too severe
but he is guilty under Canon 19.01; stern warning.

Dalisay, complainant, engaged the services of Mauricio (respondent) as a counsel in a pending
case before MTC,Binangonan, Rizal. Notwithstanding his receipt of documents and attorney's
fees, respondent never rendered legal services. Dalisay terminated the attorney client relationship
and demanded the return of her money and documents, which was refused by the respondent.
IBP recommended that respondent be required to refund the money received. However, when
respondent learned of decision of IBP, he verified the status of the pending case and he learned
that decision of Trial court holds that documents submitted by complainant are not official
records. Respondent then filed a Sworn Affidavit Complaint against Dalisay charging her with
violations of RPC, alleged that complainant offered tampered evidence.
ISSUE: Is respondent guitly of malpractice when he failed to cal upon the attention of his client?
Court ruled that respondent, as a lawyer it is axiomatic that he is not obliged to act either as adviser or
advocate for every person who wish to become his client. He has the right to decline employment.
Nevertheless, once he accepts money from client, an attorney-client relationship is already established,
giving rise to the duty of fidelity to the client's cause. He should have returned the money if did not do
anything. He did not take any action on the case despite having been paid, this is tantamount to
abandonment of his duties as lawyer. Lastly, respondent's contention that falsified documents would
justify his inability to render legal services will not exonerate him. Under Canon 19.02 which outlines
procedure in dealing with clients who perpetrated fraud in legal proceeding, the lawyer has duty to
promptly call upon the client to rectify the same, and failing which he shall terminate the relationship
with such client in accordance with the Rules of Court. Thus, respondent is guilty of malpractice and
gross misconduct.

A complaint for disbarment was filed against Atty. Reynaldo Novero, Jr for the alleged patent and gross
neglect in the handling of Civil Case No. 7500. Imputed negligent acts are following: 1. Failure to attend
the scheduled hearing; 2. notwithstanding receipts of notice, he failed to formally offer exhibits; 3. failure
to file motion within reglementary period as a result said motion was denied; and 4. Respondent tried to
shift the blame to complainant. Respondent asserted that he had no knowledge of what had happened
prior to the case before he handled it because complainant did not furnish him records. Furthermore, he
asserted that his failure to formally offer exhibit was because complainant could not be reached, and the
latter even tried to take over the handling of the case by insisting to present more witnesses who
nevertheless failed to appear during trial.
Issue: Is respondent guilty for allowing his client dictate him in handling the procedure of the case?
Yes. Respondent remiss in observing the standard care, diligence and competence prescribed for members
of the bar in the performance of professional duties. His defense that the delay was made intentionally by
the complainant is proof of his incompetence as complainant's counsel. His failure to file formal offer of
exhibits constitutes inexcusable negligence as it proved fatal to the cause of his client since it led to
dismissal of the case. A counsel must constantly keep in mind that his actions or omissions, even
malfeasance or non-feasance, would be binding on his client. Respondents attempt to evade
responsibility by shifting the blame on complainant is apparent. His averment that complainant failed to
turn over to him the records and stenographic notes of the case only highlights his incompetence and
inadequacy in handling complainants case. Respondent refers to the alleged obnoxious attitude of
complainant in trying to manipulate the manner in which he was handling the case as the main reason for
his failure to formally offer his exhibits in contravention of the order of the court. But respondent should
bear in mind that while a lawyer owes utmost zeal and devotion to the interest of his client, he also has
the responsibility of employing only fair and honest means to attain the lawful objectives of his client and
he should not allow the latter to dictate the procedure in handling the case. Atty. Novero, Jr. is
92. Shirley Loria Toledo, et al.. vs. Alfredo E. Kallos, A.M. No. RTJ-05-1900, January 28, 2005
Petitioners filed a complaint against respondent judge, who was previously Petitioners counsel in a civil
case involving a recovery of hereditary shares with damages, for violation of the Code of Professional
Responsibility and to order respondent to cease and desist from claiming attorneys fees, amounting to
1/3 of the hereditary shares.
Is Respondent judge liable under Canon 20 of the Code of Professional Responsibility?
Yes. Canon 20 of the Code of Professional Responsibility allows lawyers to charge fair and reasonable
fees. As long as a lawyer honestly and in good faith serves and represents the interest of the client, he
should have a reasonable compensation for his service. Lawyers are thus as much entitled to judicial
protection against injustice on the part of their clients as the clients are against abuses on the part of
counsel. The duty of the court is not only to see that lawyers act in a proper and lawful manner, but also
to see that lawyers are paid their just and lawful fees. It should be stressed in this connection that the
absence of a written contract will not preclude the finding that there was a professional relationship that
justifies the collection of attorneys fees for professional services rendered. Documentary formalism is
not an essential element in the employment of an attorney; the contract may be express or implied. To
establish the relation, it is sufficient that the advice and assistance of an attorney is sought and received in
any matter pertinent to his profession. Hence, with or without a contingency agreement between the
complainants and the respondent, the trial court must determine the propriety of respondents claim for
attorneys fees and the reasonable amount thereof.
93. Lijauco vs Atty. Terrado A.C. No. 6317, August 31, 2006

FACTS: On February 13, 2004, an administrative complaint was filed by complainant

Luzviminda C. Lijauco against respondent Atty. Rogelio P. Terrado for gross misconduct,
malpractice and conduct unbecoming of an officer of the court when he neglected a legal matter
entrusted to him despite receipt of payment representing attorneys fees.
ISSUE: Whether or not the ruling of the IBP Board of Governors is proper?
HELD: Yes. The records show that Atty.Terrado acted as complainants counsel in the drafting
of the compromise agreement between Ms. Lijauco and the bank regarding LRC Case No. B2610. He lured Ms. Lijauco to participate in a compromise agreement with a false and
misleading assurance that the latter can still recover her foreclosed property even after three
years from foreclosure. Atty. Terrado violated Rule1.01 Canon 1 of the CPR which says that a
lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest,immoral or deceitful conduct. Furthermore, the
Investigating Commissioner observed that the fee of P 70,000 for legal assistance in the recovery
of the deposit amounting to P 180,000 is unreasonable and is violative of Canon 20 of the CPR.
Atty. Terrada was also found guilty of violating Rule 9.02 of the CPR by openly admitting that
he divided the legal fees with two other people as a referral fee.
94. Doy Mercantile, Inc. v. AMA Computer College, G.R. No. 155311, March 31, 2004
Petitioner filed an action to reverse the decision of the Court of Appeals in awarding Atty. Eduardo P.
Gabriel, Jr. attorneys fees amounting to Php. 200, 000.00. Petitioner contended that the Court of Appeals
erred in applying Section 24 of Rule 138 of the Rules of Court and Canon 20 Rule 20.01 of the Code of
Professional Responsibility.
Is the Php. 200, 000.00 attorneys fees reasonable?
Yes. The issue of the reasonableness of attorneys fees based on quantum meruit is a question of fact and
well-settled is the rule that conclusions and findings of fact by the lower courts are entitled to great weight
on appeal and will not be disturbed except for strong and cogent reasons. The trial courts initial award of
P2000, 000.00 as attorneys fees of Atty. Gabriel, Jr. is reasonable. On the other hand, the increased
award of P500, 000.00 cannot be justified, taking into account the recognized parameters of quantum
meruit. Although Rule 138 of the Rules of Court and Rule 20.01 of the Code of Professional
Responsibility list several other factors in setting such fees, these are mere guides in ascertaining the real
value of the lawyers service. Courts are not bound to consider all these factors in fixing attorneys fees.
95. Pineda v. Atty De Jesus, G.R. No. 1552244
Aurora Pineda filed for declaration of nullity of marriage against Vinson Pineda. Aurora
proposed a settlement regarding visitation rights and the separation of properties which was accepted by
Vinson. Settlement was approved by the trial court and their marriage was declared null and void.
Throughout the proceedings the respondent counsels were compensated but they still billed
petitioner additional legal fees in amounting to P16.5M. Vinson refused to pay the additional fees but
instead paid P1.2M.
Respondents filed a complaint with the same trial court.
Trial court ordered Vinson to pay a total of P9M. CA reduced the amount to a total of P2M.
Issues: Are the respondents were entitled to additional legal fees?
A lawyer may enforce his right to his fees by filing the petition as an incident of the main
action. RTC has jurisdiction.
The respondents were seeking to collect P50M which was 10% of the value of the properties
awarded to Vinson. What respondents were demanding was additional payment for service rendered in

the same case. The professional engagement between petitioner and respondents was governed
by quantum meruit.
Rule 20.4 of the Code of Professional Responsibility advises lawyers to avoid controversies with
clients concerning their compensation and to resort to judicial action only to prevent imposition, injustice
or fraud. Suits to collect fees should be avoided and should be filed only when circumstances force
lawyers to resort to it. In this case, there was no justification for the additional legal fees sought by
respondents. It was an act of unconscionable greed.
98. Montano vs. IBP, AM No. 4215, May 21, 2001
Montano filed an action for disbarment against Atty. Juan Dealca, counsel of the Petitioner in [CA-G.R.
CV No. 37467], for the latters withdrawal of his legal services to the former because of non-payment of
attorneys fees. Montano contends that such behavior is unbecoming of being a member of the bar and
must be disbarred.
Is Atty. Dealcas withdrawal of his legal services from his client constitute gross immoral conduct?
Yes. Atty. Dealca is hereby reprimanded and with a warning that repetition of the same act shall be dealt
with more severely. Under Canon 22 of the Code of Professional Responsibility, a lawyer shall withdraw
his services only for good cause and upon notice appropriate in the circumstances.
99 Gatmaytan vs. Ilao, A.C. No. 6086, January 26, 2005
Petitioner Atty. Gatmaitan filed an appeal from the decision of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines to
dismiss his petition for disbarment against one Atty. Ilao for violation of certain Canons in the Code of
Professional Responsibility. Petitioner contended that his petition was dismissed without the
Commissioner conducting an investigation. He asserts that instead of dismissing outright the complaint
for lack of merit, Commissioner San Juan should have conducted an investigation of the charged
violations of the Canons of Professional Responsibility by respondent pursuant to Rule 139-B, Section 8
of the Rules of Court.
Is Petitioners contention correct?
No. Under Section 5 of Rule 139-B of the Rules of Court, If the complaint does not merit action, or if the
answer shows to the satisfaction of the Investigator that the complaint is not meritorious, the same may be
dismissed by the Board of Governors upon his recommendation. In the case at bar, Commissioner San
Juan did not see the need to conduct an investigation because, to her mind, the instances when an
investigation shall push through did not arise. Respondent Atty. Ilao did submit his answer to the
complaint and after the exchange of pleadings between the parties, the Commissioner made the
determination that the complaint does not merit action and must therefore be dismissed.
100 Yap-Paras vs Atty. Paras G.R. No. 147824

FACTS: On September 9, 1998, herein petitioner-movant filed a verified petition praying for the
disbarment of her estranged husband respondent Atty. Justo Paras alleging facts of deceit,
malpractice, grave misconduct, grossly immoral conduct and violation of oath as a lawyer
committed by the latter. On February 14, 2005, the Court issued a Resolution finding Atty. Paras
guilty of committing a falsehood in violation of his lawyers oath and of the Code of Professional
Responsibility. Thus, the Court resolved to suspend Atty. Paras from the practice of law for a
period of one year, with a warning that commission of the same or similar offense in the future
will result in the imposition of a more severe penalty.
ISSUE: Whether or not Atty. Justo Yap violated his lawyers oath and CPR.

HELD: Yes. Respondent violated his lawyers oath as well as the Code of Professional
Responsibility which mandates upon each lawyer, as his duty to society and to the courts, the
obligation to obey the laws of the land and to do no falsehood nor consent to the doing of any in
court. Respondent has been deplorably lacking in the candor required of him as a member of the
Bar and an officer of the court in his acts of applying for the issuance of a free patent over the
properties in issue despite his knowledge that the same had already been sold by his mother to
complainants sister.
The facts and evidence obtaining in the instant case indubitably reveal respondents failure to
live up to his duties as a lawyer in consonance with the strictures of the lawyers oath and the
Code of Professional Responsibility, thereby occasioning sanction from this Court.
Sps. Rafols, Jr. v. Atty. Barrios
Complainants were the plaintiff in a civil case wherein they sought the cancellation of a deed of sale. The
complainants were represented by the respondent, paying him P15,000 as acceptance fee. The
respondent visited the complainants at their residence and informed Manuel that the judge handling their
case wanted to talk to him. The respondent and Manuel thus went to the East Royal Hotels coffee shop
where Judge Dizon Jr. was already waiting. The respondent introduced Manuel to the Judge, who
informed Manuel that their case was already pending in his sala. The judge likewise said that he would
resolve the case in their favor, assuring their success up to the Court of Appeals, if they could deliver
P150,000 to him.
Issue: Is the respondent guilty of misconduct?
Yes. The respondents act of introducing the complainants to the judge strongly implied that the
respondent was aware of the illegal purpose of the judge in wanting to talk with the respondents clients.
Thus, the court unqualifiedly accepted the aptness of the following evaluation made in the Office of the
Bar Confidants report and recommendation. The practice of law is a privilege heavily burdened with
conditions. The attorney is a vanguard of our legal system, and, as such, is expected to maintain not only
legal proficiency but also a very high standard of morality, honesty, integrity, and fair dealing in order that
the people's faith and confidence in the legal system are ensured. Any violation of the high moral
standards of the legal profession justifies the imposition on the attorney of the appropriate penalty,
including suspension and disbarment. Specifically, the Code of Professional Responsibility enjoins an
attorney from engaging in unlawful, dishonest, or deceitful conduct. Corollary to this injunction is the rule
that an attorney shall at all times uphold the integrity and dignity of the Legal Profession and support the
activities of the Integrated Bar.

102. Mendoza v. Mercado, A.M. No. 1484, June 19, 1980

On July 1, 1975, Arsenio V. Mendoza filed a complaint, charging Arsenio Mercado, an assistant
provincial fiscal of Bulacan, with professional incompetence because in 1957 he notarized a deed of
donation mortis causa which in 1974 was decree void by the Court of First Instance of Bulacan for not
having been executed in the form of a last will and testament. In that instrument, Agueda Mendoza
donated to her sister, Felisa P. Mendoza, her share in a house and lot with an area of nine hundred
seventy-two square meters, located at Sta. Maria, Bulacan. Allegedly because of the nullity of the deed of
donation, the devise of that share to complainant Arsenio V. Mendoza and Generoso Mendoza in the last
will and testament of the donee, Felisa P. Mendoza, became ineffectual or inoperative.
Should Respondent be punished for his incompetence?

No. Professional incompetence is not among the grounds for disbarment specified in section 27, Rule 138
of the Rules of Court. It is true that the enumeration of the grounds for disbarment in section 27 is not
exclusive and that there may be a case where a lawyer should be disbarred for inexcusable ignorance of
the law. Nevertheless, in the instant case, we are satisfied that discipline action should not be taken
against the respondent for having ratified a deed of donation mortis causa which was not in the form of a
103. Tabang v. Atty. Gacott
A.C. No. 6490, September 29, 2004
On February 3, 2003, complainants Lilia Tabang and her mother, Concepcion Tabang, filed before the Integrated Bar of the
Philippines (IBP) a verified complaint for disbarment or suspension against respondent Atty. Glenn C. Gacott for gross misconduct,
deceit and gross dishonesty. Sometime between the years 1984 and 1985, Lilia sought the legal advice of Gacott, regarding her
desire to buy a 30-hectare agricultural land in Barangay Bacungan, Puerto Princesa, Palawan, which consists of several parcels of
land belonging to different owners. Judge Gacott informed Lilia that under the agrarian reform program of the government, she is
prohibited from acquiring vast tracks of agricultural land, as she already owns other parcels of land. Lilia bought the parcels of land
using fictitious names. Complainants decided to sell the subject parcels of land because they needed money for their medication
and other necessary expenses. On the pretext that he is going to help them sell the subject property to prospective buyers,
respondent borrowed the seven land titles from complainants but He informed complainants that he lost all the seven land titles.
Thereafter, respondent caused the publication of a notice representing himself as the owner of the subject parcels of land and
indicating therein his desire to sell the said properties. Eventually, respondent was able to sell the seven parcels of land to seven
individuals. However, only three of these buyers were legitimate, while the remaining four are dummies of respondent. As a result
of selling the three parcels of land, respondent was able to receiveP3,773,675.00. None of the proceeds of the sale was remitted to
complainants. Complainants contend that in executing the various Revocation of Special Power of Attorney and Affidavit of
Recovery, affixing thereon the signatures of the fictitious registered owners of the disputed parcels of land, and in arrogating the
ownership over the said lands upon himself, respondent committed gross misconduct, dishonesty and deceit. Respondent filed his
Answer to the Complaint denying the material allegations of the complainants.
Issue: Is Atty. Gascott guilty of Gross Misconduct, Deceit and Dishonesty?
Ruling: The Administrative case is hereby REMANDED to the IBP. In a report dated March 4, 2004, Commissioner Navarro found
respondent guilty of gross misconduct for violating Rule 1.01 of Canon 1 of the Code of Professional Responsibility. Accordingly she
recommended that respondent be suspended from the practice of law for six months. On April 16, 2004, the Board of Governors of
the IBP passed a resolution adopting the report of Commissioner Navarro. However, the Board modified the recommended penalty
and imposed the supreme punishment of disbarment. The case should be remanded for further proceedings. A lawyer may be
disbarred or suspended for any violation of his oath, a patent disregard of his duties, or an odious deportment unbecoming an
attorney. Among the grounds enumerated in Section 27, Rule 138 of the Rules of Court are deceit, malpractice, gross misconduct in
office, grossly immoral conduct, conviction of a crime involving moral turpitude, any violation of the oath which he is required to take
before admission to the practice of law, willful disobedience of any lawful order of a superior court, corrupt or willful appearance as
an attorney for a party to a case without authority to do so. The grounds are not preclusive in nature even as they are broad enough
as to cover practically any kind of impropriety that a lawyer does or commits in his professional career or in his private life. A lawyer
must at no time be wanting in probity and moral fiber which are not only conditions precedent to his entrance to the Bar but are
likewise essential demands for his continued membership therein. Nonetheless, the power to disbar must be exercised with great
caution. For the court to exercise its disciplinary powers, the case against the respondent must be established by clear, convincing
and satisfactory proof. Indeed, considering the serious consequences of the disbarment or suspension of a member of the Bar, the
Supreme Court has consistently held that clearly preponderant evidence is necessary to justify the imposition of the administrative
In Re: Suspension of Pelaez
March 3, 1923
The respondent Vicente Pelaez is a member of the Philippine Bar, residing at Cebu, Cebu. On March 20, 1918, he was appointed
guardian of the minor Gracia Cabrera. As such guardian, he came into possession of certain property and shares. Being the
guardian of the minor, he borrowed P2800 from the Philippine National Bank Cebu Branch. To guarantee the loan, without the
knowledge or consent of the Court of First Instance of Cebu, deposited with the Cebu branch of the Philippine National Bank the
shares of stock corresponding to the guardianship and executed written agreement without the authority of the Court of First
Instance of Cebu which caused the judge of First Instance to suspend him from the legal profession.
Issue: May Atty. Pelaez be disbarred or suspended of his non-professional misconduct
Ruling: Yes. Section 21 of the Code of Civil Procedure provides that a member of the bar may be removed or suspended from this
office as lawyer by the Supreme Court for any of the causes therein enumerated. It will be noticed that our statute merely provides
that certain cause shall be deemed sufficient for the revocation or suspension of an attorney's license. It does not provide that these
shall constitute the only causes for disbarment, or that an attorney may not be disbarred or suspended for other reasons. It is a wellsettled rule that a statutory enumeration of the grounds of disbarment is not to be taken as a limitation of the general power of the
court in this respect. Even where the Legislature has specified the grounds for disbarment, the inherent power of the court over its
officer is not restricted. The prior tendency of the decisions of this court has been toward the conclusion that a member of the bar
may be removed or suspended from his office as lawyer for other than statutory grounds. Indeed, the statute is so phrased as to be
broad enough to cover practically any misconduct of a lawyer. a court will not assume jurisdiction to discipline one of its officers for
misconduct alleged to have been committed in his private capacity. But this is a general rule with many exceptions. The courts
sometimes stress the point that the attorney has shown, through misconduct outside of his professional dealings, a want of such
professional honesty as render him unworthy of public confidence, and an unfit and unsafe person to manage the legal business of

others. The reason why such a distinction can be drawn is because it is the court which admits an attorney to the bar, and the court
requires for such admission the possession of good moral character.
Cojuangco Jr. v. Atty. Palma
A.C. No. 2474, June 30, 2005
On June 22, 1982, respondent Atty. Leo J. Palma, despite his subsisting marriage, wed Maria Luisa Cojuangco, the daughter of
complainant Eduardo M. Cojuangco, Jr. Thus, the latter filed on November 1982, a complaint disbarment against respondent. Palma
moved to dismiss the complaint. On March 2, 1983, the court referred the case to OSG for investigation and recommendation. The
Assistant Solicitor General heard the testimonies of the complainant and his witness in the presence of respondents counsel. On
March 19, 1984 respondent filed with the OSG an urgent motion to suspend proceedings on the ground that the final actions of his
civil case for the declaration of nullity of marriage between him and his wife Lisa, poses a prejudicial question to the disbarment
proceeding, but it was denied. The OSG transferred the disbarment case to the IBP, the latter found respondent guilty of gross
immoral conduct and violation of his oath as a lawyer, hence, was suspended from the practice of law for a period of three years. In
his motion for reconsideration, respondent alleged that he acted under a firm factual and legal conviction in declaring before the
Hong Kong Marriage Registry that he is a bachelor because his first marriage is void even if there is judicial declaration of nullity.
Issue: Whether or not a subsequent void marriage still needs a judicial declaration of nullity for the purpose of remarriage.
Held: Respondents arguments that he was of the firm factual and legal conviction when he declared before the HIC authorities that
he was a bachelor since his first marriage is void and does not need judicial declaration of nullity cannot exonerate him. In Terre v.
Terre, the same defense was raised by respondent lawyer whose disbarment was also sought. We held: xxx respondent Jordan
Terre, being a lawyer, knew or should have known that such an argument ran counter to the prevailing case law of this court which
holds that purposes of determining whether a person is legally free to contract a second marriage, a judicial declaration that the first
marriage was null and void an initio is essential. Even if we were to assume, arguendo merely, that Jordan Terre held that mistaken
belief in good faith, the same result will follow. For if we are to hold Jordan Terre to his own argument, his first marriage to
complainant Dorothy Terre must be deemed valid, with the result that his second marriage must be regarded as bigamous and
In Re: xxx B.M. No. 793 July 30, 2004
In a Letter dated August 20, 1996, the District Court of Guam informed this Court of the suspension of Atty. Leon G. Maquera
(Maquera) from the practice of law in Guam. He was suspended from the practice of law in Guam for misconduct, as he acquired his
client's property as payment for his legal services, then sold it and as a consequence obtained an unreasonably high fee for
his client's case. Under Section 27, Rule 138 of the Revised Rules of Court, the disbarment or suspension of a member of the
Philippine Bar in a foreign jurisdiction, where he has also been admitted as an attorney, is also a ground for his disbarment or
suspension in this realm, provided the foreign court's action is by reason of an act or omission constituting deceit, malpractice or
other gross misconduct, grossly immoral conduct, or a violation of the lawyer's oath. The case was referred by the Court to the
Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) for investigation report and recommendation. In its decision, the Superior Court of Guam
stated that Maquera was the counsel of a certain Castro. Benavente the creditor Castro,
obtained a judgement against Castro, thus Castro;s property was to be sold at a public auction in satisfaction of his obligation to
Benavente. However, Castro retains the right of redemption. In consideration of Maqueras legal services, Castro entered into an
oral agreement with Maquera and assigned his right of redemption in favor of the latter. On January 8, 1988, Maquera exercised
Castro's right of redemption by paying Benavente US$525.00 in satisfaction of the judgment debt. Thereafter, Maquera had the title
to the property transferred in his name.And after, sold the property to C.S. Chang and C.C. Chang for Three Hundred Twenty
Thousand U.S. Dollars (US$320,000.00). The Guam Bar Ethics Committee filed a Petition in the Superior Court of Guam praying
that Maquera be sanctioned for violations of Rules 1.5 and 1.8(a) of the Model Rules of Professional Conduct (Model Rules) in force
in Guam. In its Petition, theCommittee claimed that Maquera obtained an unreasonably high fee for his services. The Committee
further alleged that Maquera himself admitted his failure to comply with the requirement in Rule 1.8 (a) of the Model Rules that a
lawyer shall not enter into a business transaction with a client or knowingly acquire a pecuniary interest adverse to a client unless
the transaction and the terms governing the lawyer's acquisition of such interest are fair and reasonable to the client, and are fully
disclosed to, and understood by the client and reduced in writing. On the basis of the Decision of the Superior Court of Guam, the
IBP concluded that although the said court found Maquera liable for misconduct, "there is no evidence to establish that Maquera
committed a breach of ethics in the Philippines."However, the IBP still resolved to suspend him indefinitely for his failure to pay his
annual dues as a member of the IBP since 1977, which failure is, in turn, a ground for removal of the name of the delinquent
member from the Roll of Attorneys under Section 10, Rule 139-A of the Revised Rules of Court.
Issue:Whether or not Maquera, who was suspended from the practice of law in Guam, be suspended as member of the Philippine
Bar on the same ground of his suspension in Guam.
Ruling: The power of the Court to disbar or suspend a lawyer for acts or omissions committed in a foreign jurisdiction is found in
Section 27, Rule 138 of the Revised Rules of Court, as amended by Supreme Court Resolution dated February 13, 1992, which
states: Section 27. Disbarment or suspension of attorneys by Supreme Court, grounds therefor.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 admission to practice, or for a willful disobedience appearing as attorney for a party toa
case without authority to do so. The practice of soliciting cases at law for the purpose of gain, either personally or through paid
agents or brokers, constitutes malpractice.
Soriano v. Atty. Dizon
A.C. No. 6792, January 25, 2006
This is a case of disbarment filed against the accused due to his conviction of frustrated homicide.the case stemmed from a traffic
altercation by the respondent with the complainant. In the course of their trouble, respondent was able to hit the neck of the
complainant by his revolver making the complainant physically paralyzed.the manner which the respondent attacked the
complainant and a credible corroboration of witnesses as to the crime lead the conviction of the respondent of the said crime but

later the rtc suspended the sentence by granting the respondent a probation.respondent banking his defense on a concocted story
and alibi which later disregarded by the court due to existence of credible documentary and testimonial evidence.
Issue: whether his crime of frustrated homicide involves moral turpitude? Whether his conviction warrants disbarment?
Ruling: the court resolved the matter by declaring the actuation of the respondent in the crime of frustrated homicide involved moral
turpitude.the court also consider the findings of treachery as a further indications of skewed morals of respondent.it is also glaringly
clear that respondent seriously transgressed canon 1 of the code of professional responsibility thru his possession of an unlicensed
fire arm and his unjust refusal to satisfy civil liabilities.the court remind him both the attorneys oath and code of professional
responsibility.the appalling vindictiveness and,treachery, and brazen dishonesty of respondent clearly show his unworthiness to
continue as member of the bar.thus the court,disbarred the respondent and ordered the name of the latter be stricken from the roll of
Guiang v. Antonio
A.C. No. 2473 February 3, 1993
In May 1981, petitioner retained the services of Atty. Antonio as her counsel in connection with civil case docketed as CA-G.R. No.
62250, "Heirs of Rita Reyes vs. Brigido Valencia", then on appeal with the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals had rendered a
decision on February 27, 1981 adverse to plaintiffs, one of whom was the petitioner. The Court of Appeals granted Atty. Antonio's
motion for Reconsideration on April 22, 1981 and giving petitioner up to May 27, 1981 to file the motion. On May 26, 1981,
Atty. Antonio filed another motion for extension which was granted. On June 26, 1981, respondent filed the Motion for
Reconsideration which the Court of Appeals denied on July 27, 1981. Respondent failed to file the appeal within the 15-day period
from receipt of the denial by the Court of Appeals. The adverse decision of the Court of Appeals became final; hence, this petition
for disbarment.
Issue: Is the respondent guilty of negligence and malpractice?
Ruling: Yes. The Bar Confidant found the respondent guilty of negligence and malpractice for violating Rule 18.03, Canon 18 of the
Code of Professional Responsibility which provides: A lawyer shall not neglect a legal matter entrusted to him and his negligence in
connection therewith shall render him liable. Added to this offense are the highly improper statements in respondent's pleadings
describing his client's case as "hopeless or beyond legal remedy" after neglecting to file the appeal on time. No formal, trial-like,
hearing was conducted by the Bar Confidant wherein Atty. Leonardo B. Antonio could been given an opportunity orally to explain his
side. However, written comments on the administrative complaint clearly present to the Court his reasons for his omission in
attending to his client's cause. All the material facts are on record, thus this case can be decided without need for a trial-type
hearing.The court find the recommendation of the Bar Confidant holding the respondent guilty of negligence and malpractice, in
violation of the Code of Professional Responsibility, to be well-taken. Accordingly, the Court RESOLVED to suspend respondent
from the practice of law for six (6) months effective upon receipt of this decision. Let this Resolution be spread on the personal
record of respondent Atty. Leonardo B. Antonio in the Office of the Bar Confidant and copies thereof furnished to all courts of the
Re: 2003 Bar Examinations
B.M. No. 1222, April 24, 2009
The leakage of bar questions in mercantile law during the 2003 bar examinations warranted the nullification of the results in that
subject and the subsequent distribution of the corresponding percentage thereof among the seven bar subjects. thorough
investigation revealed that a certain Danilo De Guzman, one of the assistant attorneys at the Balgos and Perez Law Firm, was
responsible for the leakage. Atty. Marcial Balgos, a senior partner in the firms, happened to have been commissioned by Justice
Jose Vitug to prepare questions in mercantile law. Atty. De Guzman admitted to downloading the questions from Atty. Balgos'
computer and distributing the same to two of his brothers in the Beta Sigma Lambda fraternity. From the point, the leaked questions
spread and an unknown number of examinees were able to obtain copies thereof. Atty. De Guzman was thus disbarred, while Atty.
Balgos was reprimanded for his negligence and lack of due care in safeguarding the proposed questions in mercantile law.
ISSUE: Whether or not disbarment was proper
HELD: Yes. Atty. De guzman, by transmitting and distributing the stolen test questions to some members of the beta sigma lambda
fraternity, possibly for pecuniary profit and to give them undue advantage over the other examinees in mercantile law, abetted
cheating and dishonesty by his fraternity brothers in the examination, which is violative of rule 1.01 of canon 1 as well as canon 7 of
the code of professional responsibility. De guzman was guilty of misconduct unbecoming a member of the bar. He violated the law
instead of promoting respect for it and degraded the noble profession instead of upholding its dignity and integrity.


vs Atty. Valdez A.C. 7902 March 31, 2009

FACTS: Lawyer Valdez committed multiple violations of the canons of the Code of Professional
Responsibility by having taken full retainer's fee and not having done anything regarding
Complainant Overgaard's cases to the latter's prejudice and dismay.
ISSUE: Whether or not Valdez committed multiple violations on the Code of Professional
Responsibility and thus his disbarment should be sustained.
HELD: The disbarment of Valdez should be upheld.
Canon 16: A lawyer shall hold in trust all money and properties of his client that may come into
his possession.
It is a lawyer's duty to properly account for the money he received from his client. (Rule 16.01)
The Court finds that Atty. Valdez has committed multiple violations on the canons of the Code
of Professional Responsibility because he did not observe the fundamental duties of honesty and

good faith. (Canon 1, Rule 1.01; Canon 15; Canon17;Canon 18 Rule 18.03;Canon 16 Rule
The PRACTICE OF LAW IS NOT A RIGHT, BUT A PRIVILEGE. It is granted only to those
of good moral character. The Bar must maintain a high standard of honesty and fair dealing.
Lawyers must conduct themselves beyond reproach at all times, whether they are dealing with
their clients or the public at large, and a violation of the high moral standards of the legal
profession justifies the imposition of the appropriate penalty, including suspension and
In this case, SC finds that suspension for 3 years recommended by the IBP is not sufficient
punishment for the unacceptable acts and omissions of Respondent Valdez. For violating
elementary principles of professional ethics and failing to observe the fundamental duties of
honesty and good faith, respondent has proven himself unworthy of membership in this noble
profession. Disbarred.
111. In Re: Avancea, Adm. Case No. 407, March 31, 2009
Respondent was convicted for Falsification of a Public Document under Art. 172 of the Revised
Penal Code and the decision was rendered to that effect that the Court has found that said respondent has
taken advantage of the law profession in committing said crime. The President of the Philippines
extended conditional pardon to Petitioner. Petitioner challenges the decision of the Supreme Court.
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Executive Pardon)
The fact that respondent was extended conditional pardon by the Chief Executive is of no
moment. Such conditional pardon merely partially relieved him of the penal consequences of his act, but
did not operate as a bar to his disbarment, especially so when he is being disbarred on the ground of
professional misconduct for which he had been convicted by final judgement.
112 Guitierrez v. Villegas, G.R. No. L-11848, May 31, 1962
Irene Santos died and was survived by her husband and two nieces, daughters of her deceased
brother. Her husband filed a petition for the issuance of letters of administration, naming himself and the
two nieces as the surviving heirs of the decedent. He was later named by the court as
administrator. Thereafter, an unverified manifestation was filed by Adela Gutierrez, one of the nieces, in
court, attesting to a deed of assignment conveying all her interest in participating in the proceedings to her
sister. On a later date however, another manifestation was filed by Adela, alleging that the deed of
assignment mentioned in the earlier filed manifestation was procured by the administrator by fraud and
that she signed the same by mistake. She alleged that she was misled by the husband in signing said
manifestation in exchange for money loaned to her by her sister, and that she continuously seeks to
participate in the intestate proceedings of her aunt. She then filed a motion to transfer the special
proceedings in the same branch where a case for the nullity of deed of assignment was filed. This motion
was denied. Adela then sought that the administrator be ordered to furnish her all records of the
proceedings. The administrator opposed this on the ground of the earlier filed manifestation. The court
ordered in favor of the administrator.
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Supposedly Executive Pardon)
It cannot be successfully denied that Adela Santos Gutierrez is an indispensable party to the
proceedings in question. Her interest in the estate is not inchoate, it was established at the time of death of
Irene Santos. While it is true that she executed a deed of assignment, it is also a fact that she asked the
same to be annulled, which action is now pending. Although Adela had filed a manifestation dropping

herself from the proceedings and presenting therewith the supposed Deed of Assignment, the record,
nevertheless fails to show that action thereon had been taken by the probate Court. Every act intended to
put an end to indivision among co-heirs and legatees or devisees is deemed to be a partition, although it
should purport to be a sale, an exchange, a compromise, or any other transaction (Art. 1082, NCC). No
serious argument can be offered to deny the co-heirship of appellee in the estate under probate. It
appearing (if We assume the due execution of the Deed of Assignment), that the transaction is in the
nature of extrajudicial partition, court approval is imperative, and the heirs cannot just divest the court of
its jurisdiction over the estate and over their persons, by the mere act of assignment and desistance.
113. Office of the Court Administrator v. Filomeno Pascual, Adm. Matter No. MTJ-93-783, July 29, 1996
Sometime in February, 1993, a certain Ceferino Tigas wrote a letter, addressed to Hon.
Reynaldo Suarez of the Office of the Court Administrator of the Supreme Court, charging that
irregularities and corruption were being committed by the respondent Presiding Judge of the Municipal
Trial Court of Angat, Bulacan. Because of this, an Entrapment Operation was made by the NBI in order
to convict the respondent judge of Bribery. After the entrapment operation was conducted, petitioner
asked for the removal of respondent judge from his office.
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Qualification of Judges)
The Supreme Court reiterated the ruling in the case of Raquiza v. Castaneda, Jr that The ground for the removal of a judicial officer should be established beyond
reasonable doubt. Such is the rule where the charges on which the removal is sought is
misconduct in office, willful neglect, corruption, incompetency, etc. The general rules in regard
to admissibility of evidence in criminal trials apply.
Reasonable doubt is the inability to let the judicial mind rest easy upon the certainty of guilt
after a thorough investigation of the whole evidence.[16] The principle of reasonable doubt being
applicable in the instant case, therefore, we find that the alleged act of bribery committed by respondent
has not been sufficiently and convincingly proven to warrant the imposition of any penalty against
114 Ramirez v. Corpus-Macandog, Adm. Matter Nos. R-351-RTJ, R-359-RTJ-R-621-RTJ, R-684-RTJ,
R-87-RTJ & 86-4-9987-RTC, September 26, 1986
Respondent Judge acted improperly when she rendered rulings based on directives she received
from a government official. In her defense, the respondent judge claimed at that time, the country was
then under a revolutionary government, and to promote peace she made certain rulings acting on the
pressure of the government official.
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Independence of Courts)
The Supreme Court held:
Even accepting for the nonce that there was this supposed pressure from a source
twice removed from the national official mentioned earlier, her confessed act of succumbing to
this pressure on the telephone is a patent betrayal of the public trust reposed on respondent as an
arbiter of the law and a revelation of her weak moral character. By her appointment to the office,
the public has laid on respondent their confidence that she is mentally and morally fit to pass
upon the merits of their varied contentions. For this reason, they expect her to be fearless in her
pursuit to render justice, to be unafraid to displease any person, interest or power and to be
equipped with a moral fiber strong enough to resist the temptations lurking in her office.

Regrettably, respondent has dismally failed to exhibit these qualities required of those holding
such office.
115 Ajeno v. Inserto, Adm. Matter No. 1098-CFI, May 31, 1976
In a verified complaint dated October 25, 1975, complainant Ludovico Ajeno of Barotac,
Nuevo, Iloilo, charged Judge Sancho Y. Inserto of the Court of First Instance, Iloilo City for ignorance of
the law, particularly Article 39 of the Revised Penal Code. In his comment to the charge of complainant,
respondent Judge admitted his error; that it was never his intention to oppress anyone, much less the
complainant; that at the time he committed the mistake he was relying on the doctrine that what the
Constitution prohibits is imprisonment for debt arising exclusively from action ex contractu and does not
include damages arising from action ex delictu, fines, penalties imposed in criminal proceedings.
Complainant thus prays this Court to remove respondent Judge from office "for incompetence and for
lack of the highest degree of intellectual responsibility and integrity required of him by the nature of his
office. ... "
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Independence)
The Canons of Judicial Ethics would not allow that such conduct pass without any word of
admonition to the erring respondent Judge. When he accepted his position he owed it to the dignity of the
court, to the legal profession and to the public, to know the very law. he is supposed to apply to a given
controversy. Even in the remaining years of his stay in the judiciary he should keep abreast with the
changes in the law and with the latest decisions and precedents. Although a judge is nearing retirement he
should not relax in his study of the law and court decisions. Service in the judiciary means a continuous
study and research on the law from beginning to end. In this respect respondent Judge has failed.
The Supreme Court only reprimanded the Respondent Judge because he committed the error in
good faith.
116 6. Office of the Court Administrator v. Judge Floro, Jr., A.M. No. RTC-99-146
On July 20, 1999 Floro was placed on preventive suspension during the investigation against
him, for a variety of reasons including:
Violating a variety of rules governing judicial conduct, including circulating a business card
containing self-congratulatory statements, and announcing his qualifications in court
declarations in criminal cases on the side of the accused
having a private law practice while a judge
having hearings without the presence of a prosecuting attorney
ordering mental and physical examinations of an accused over the objections of a prosecutor on
unjustified grounds
The investigation resulted in 13 charges. In March, 2001 the Supreme Court reviewed a report
incorporating psychiatric and psychological findings of multiple doctors which judged the evidence to be
substantiated, and recommended Floro be declared unfit to be a judge, effective immediately. Over the
next several years the Supreme Court undertook an investigation, ultimately handing down a unanimous
decision that Floro be dismissed from the bench. The court did not rule that Floro was insane, but did
suffer from psychosis that impaired his judgment.
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Independence)

After 68 months of suspension, on April 7, 2006 the Supreme Court fined Floro 40,000 pesos and
removed him from his position with three years back pay, allowances, and benefits. The court did not find
Floro guilty of gross misconduct or corruption but did find that his mental health indicated "gross
deficiency in competence and independence".
117. Melencio

Manansala III vs Fatima Asdala

FACTS: Winfried Herbst was detained by the police for breaking the glass wall in the office of
Melencio P. Manansala III. After detaining Herbst, complainant claims that respondent Judge
Fatima G. Asdala called the command of the station Atty. Joel Coronel, trying to influence him
to release Herbst as he was Judge Asdalas close friend. Later on, Asdala instructed sheriff Mark
Cabigao and two policemen to request that the car of Herbst be turned over to their custody.
Manansala filed a complaint-affidavit against Judge Asdala charging her with violation of
Section 3(a) of Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices (R.A. 3019) for allegedly using her position in
influencing a public officer. Furthermore, she is allegedly been using a government employee for
private means when she sent sheriff Cabigao and two policemen to claim Herbsts car. Judge
Asdala denies the claims stating that she never spoke with Atty. Coronel but with a certain
Maceren. She alleged that the sheriff was all too willing to help. Judge Asdala further averred
that all charges against her were a form of payback for filing libel charges against Manansala for
allegedly defaming her in a television show
ISSUE: Whether or not Respondent Judge abused her authority and committed an act of gross
HELD: In administrative cases, the quantum of proof necessary to hold a respondent liable for
the charge is substantial evidence or such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind may accept as
adequate to support a conclusion.
In the case at bar, Judge Asdala denies having talked to Atty. Coronel. She admits though that
she talked to one Maceren who, by her claim, butted in during her phone conversation with
Herbst. She proffers, however, that when she conversed with Maceren, she identified herself as
Mrs. Asdala and merely asked him if a complaint had been filed against Herbst, for what offense,
and when the case would be inquested.
Judge Asdalas plain denial of the charge of influencing does not suffice to discredit the
straightforward claim of Atty. Coronel.
118 In Re: Demetrio G. Demetria, A.M. No. 00-7-09-CA, March 27, 2001
The national dailies collectively reported that Court of Appeals Associate Justice Demetrio G.
Demetria tried to intercede on behalf of suspected Chinese drug queen Yu Yuk Lai, alias Sze Yuk Lai,
who went in and out of prison to play in a Manila casino. The Respondent Court of Appeals Justice
denied the accusations.
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Independence)
The Supreme Court held:
In sum, we find the testimonies of the prosecution witnesses convincing and trustworthy,
as compared to those of the defense which do not only defy natural human experience but are
also riddled with major inconsistencies which create well-founded and overriding doubts.

The conduct and behavior of everyone connected with an office charged with the
dispensation of justice is circumscribed with the heavy of responsibility. His at all times must be
characterized with propriety and must be above suspicion.39 His must be free of even a whiff of
impropriety, not only with respect to the performance of his judicial duties, but also his behavior
outside the courtroom and as a private individual.
Unfortunately, respondent Justice Demetrio Demetria failed failed to live up to this
expectation. Through his indiscretions, Justice Demetria did not only make a mockery of his high
office, but also caused incalculable damage to the entire Judiciary. The mere mention of his name
in the national newspapers, allegedly lawyering for a suspected drug queen and interfering with
her prosecution seriously undermined the integrity of the entire Judiciary.
Respondent is dismissed from the Judicial service and barred from holding public office.
119 Martinez v. Gironella, G.R. No. L-37635, July 22,1975
Martinez, Duclan and Bayongan were charged with Murder. Martinez and Duclan were still at
large when Bayongan was acquitted by the respondent Judge. Martinez surrendered to the Philippine
Constabulary and pleaded and was later arraigned to the same court who handled the case of Bayongan
Counsel for accused Cresencio Martinez moved that the trial Judge inhibit himself from hearing
the case on its merits on the grounds "(1) that the respondent had the chance to pass upon the issue and
has formed an opinion as to who committed the crime of murder; (2) that it would not be fair that he
would sit, hear and pass judgment; and (3) that the respondent is no longer impartial."
HELD/DOCTRINE: (Independence)
A Judge has the duty not only to render a just and impartial decision, but also render it in such a
manner as to be free from any suspicion as to its fairness and impartiality, and also as to the judge's
integrity. While we grant respondent's capacity to render a just and impartial decision, his statement in the
decision acquitting Arnold Bayongan to the effect that the "crime was committed by Cresencio Martinez"
renders it impossible for respondent to be free from the suspicion that in deciding petitioner's case,
respondent will be biased and prejudiced. We therefore hold that under these circumstances petitioner has
the right to have his case decided by another Judge.
120. A.M. No. MTJ-92-691 September 10, 1993
Facts: Imam Hashim Abdulla, Imam Hadji Tambing, Hatib Illih Musa, officers and members of the Sulu
Islamic Association of Masjid Lambayong, filed an administrative complaint against Judge Nabdar J.
Malik, Presiding Judge of the Municipal Trial Court in Jolo, Sulu, charging him with violation of R.A.
2260 (An Act to Amend and Revise the Laws Relative to Philippine Civil Service) and serious
misconduct committed as follows:
1. Nepotism by recommending the appointment of Omar Kalim, his nephew, and Hanina Kalim, his
niece-in-law, as process server and clerk, respectively. He also falsely claimed that Omar Kalim was not
his relative.
2. Graft and Corruption by using Omar Kalim to extort money from court litigants, e.g.:
a. P13,000.00 in exchange for the freedom of Datu Tating Erwin, who had been charged an accessory in a
robbery case;

b. demanding P10,000.00 thru a certain P/Sgt. Duran Abam Tating, Erwin's brother-in-law; and
c. blackmailing litigants;
3. Immorality engaging in an adulterous relationship with another woman with whom he has three
1. Does bigamy applies to all individuals who engage into marriage x times while a previous marriage
2. Is an appointing authority (govt official/employee) obliged to disclose his relatives also working in the
1. No. With regard to the charge of adultery or immorality, the investigating Judge observed that under
Muslim Law the marriage of a Tausug (the tribal group to which Judge Malik belongs) to as many as four
(4) wives in sanctioned provided the man can support them and does not neglect any or them.
2. Yes. Sec. 59. Nepotism. (1) All appointments in the national, provincial, city and municipal
governments or in any branch or instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or controlled
corporations, made in favor of a relative of the
appointing or recommending authority, or of the chief of the bureau or office, or of the persons exercising
immediate supervision over him, are hereby prohibited.
As used in this Section, the word "relative" and members of the family referred to are those related within
the third degree either of consanguinity or of affinity.
By making untruthful statements and certifications regarding their relationship to each other, Judge Malik
and his nephew, Omar Kalim, committed the crime of falsification under Article 171, subparagraph 4 of
the Revised Penal Code.
Nepotism is a ground for disciplinary action under Section 46, subpar. 30, Chapter 5, Book V of the
Administrative Code of 1987:
Kalim, likewise, falsely denied his relationship to Judge Malik. Their acts violated the Code of Conduct
and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees and are punishable under Section 11 of the
Code, with removal from office.
Moreover, by committing nepotism and covering up his malfeasance by falsely disavowing any
relationship to the appointee, Judge Malik is also guilty of gross ignorance of the law and falsification and
violated the Code of Judicial Conduct, which requires that "a judge shall not allow family, social, or other
relationship to influence his judicial conduct or judgment" (Canon 2, Rule 2.03) and enjoins a judge to
"be faithful to the law" (Canon 3, Rule 3.01).
121.A.M. No. MTJ-94-985 February 21, 1995
APOLINARIO MUEZ, complainant, vs. JUDGE CIRIACO ARIO, MCTC, San Francisco, Agusan
del Sur, respondent.
Facts: Mayor Irisari of Loreto, Agusan del Sur summoned to his office herein complainant Apolinario S.
Muez for conference respecting a land dispute which Muez had with one Tirso Amado. As complainant
failed to attend the conference, Mayor Irisari issued a warrant of arrest against him on December 27, 1989.
The warrant was served on complainant by CFC Redelio Caballes and Cpl. Rolando Limayan and by
virtue of it complainant was brought before Mayor Irisari, although no investigation was later conducted.
Complainant filed a complaint against Mayor Irisari for grave misconduct and usurpation of judicial
function with the Office of the Ombudsman as well as administrative complaint for violation of the
Constitution, misconduct in office and abuse of authority with the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Agusan
del Sur.
The investigating officer of the Office of the Ombudsman filed a case for usurpation of judicial function
against Mayor Asuero Irisari in the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Loreto, Agusan del Sur. He criminal
case was later assigned to respondent Judge Ciriaco Ario.
Accused Irisari moved to quash the information on the ground that the acts complained of did not
constitute a crime under the law. He contended that under 143(3) of the former Local Government Code
(Batas Pambansa Blg. 337), mayors were authorized to issue warrants of arrest.

On July 28, 1992, respondent Judge Ario denied the motion to quash on the ground that the power of
mayors to issue warrants of arrest had ceased to exist as of February 2, 1987 when the Constitution took
Mayor Irisari filed a motion for reconsideration of the order of denial of respondent judge, invoking the
resolution of the DILG.
In an order dated February 15, 1993, respondent Judge Ario reconsidered his previous order and
dismissed the case. complainant Muez sent two letters dated July 5 and 12, 1933 to the Presidential AntiCrime Commission charging respondent Judge Ciriaco C. Ario with knowingly rendering an unjust
judgment for dismissing the case against Mayor Irisari.
Issue: Did the respondent judge render unjust decision regarding the dismissal of Mayor Irisari's case.
Held: Yes. The acts alleged in the information constitute a crime. Under Art. 241 of the Revised Penal
Code, the crime of usurpation of judicial authority involves the following elements: (1) that the offender
is an officer of the executive branch of the government; and (2) that he assumes judicial powers, or
obstructs the execution of any order or decision rendered by any judge within his jurisdiction. The
issuance of the warrant when there was before him no criminal case, but only a land dispute as it is now
being made to appear, only made it worse for the mayor, for it would then appear that he assumed a
judicial function which even a judge could not have done. Therefore, respondent judge should not have
dismissed the criminal case against the mayor.
But there is more than just gross ignorance of legal principles shown here. Although he denies it, what the
respondent judge appears to have actually done in this case was to rely on the opinion of the DILG which
found the mayor not guilty of serious misconduct in office on the ground that he had not really issued a
warrant of arrest against the complainant but only an invitation or a summons. To justify his reliance on
the opinion of the DILG, respondent judge invoked the rule in administrative law that the findings of facts
of administrative agencies when supported by substantial evidence, are binding on the courts in the
absence of a showing of fraud, imposition or dishonesty.
A.M. No. 2271-MJ September 18, 1981
FRANCISCO M. LECAROZ, complainant, vs. HON. SEGUNDO M. GARCIA, respondent.
Facts: This is a verified complaint 1 dated March 8, 1979, filed by Francisco Lecaroz, Municipal Mayor
of Santa Cruz, Marinduque, against Municipal Judge Segundo Garcia of said municipality, for alleged
"misconduct or improprieties" committed by the latter as follows:
1. The improper conduct of Judge Garcia in soliciting for donations of office equipments (sic) from
Marcopper Mining Corporation, an entity which at some time or another may be a party in litigation
before Judge Garcia himself As a matter of fact, at the time the office requirements (sic) were donated
and delivered, Mr. Cirilo Cachero, the Personnel Officer of Marcopper Mining Corporation, has a
pending criminal case against him before the Municipal Court of Santa Cruz for Perjury, docketed as
Crim. Case No. (78)-16 and said case is still pending disposition by Judge Garcia. In the face of the
instant situation, how can the complainant in the Cachero case believe in the cold impartiality of Judge
2. Without going through the propriety of making representations with the office of the Mayor and/or
office of the Municipal Treasurer in order that the donated equipments (sic) can be issued for the use of
his office, Judge Garcia took it upon himself to accept delivery of the equipments (sic) from Atty.
Teodulo Gabor, Jr., a Marcopper lawyer, and placed said equipments (sic) inside his office where they are
situated up to the present. Such abject lack of decorum and courtesy could hardly be expected from a man
of the bench.
Issue: Does the respondent judge be held liable?
Held: Yes. It clearly appears on record that the donation in question was made thru respondent Judge's
personal intercession and solicitations, which consist not merely of follow-up letters but also thru
personal follow-ups. On top of this, respondent Judge expressly admitted that the request or solicitation
made to the Marcopper Mining Corporation is only one among more solicitations he had made as he had
likewise "sent similar solicitations to Mr. Macario Rodil for another swivel chair, to the Consolidated

Mines and to Mr. Luis Tan Family for a dozen upholstered chairs, 3 long upholstered benches, a long
table for the courtroom and others. Ironically the respondent Judge did not even bother to ask these things
from the Municipal Government on the lame excuse that "it has many, many more projects to make that
will redound to the benefit of the people of Sta. Cruz."
His conduct of soliciting for the office equipment in question would show that he openly transgressed the
established norm for judicial behavior as contained in Paragraph 3 of the Canons of Judicial Ethics, which
provides that "(a) judge's official conduct should be free from the appearance of impropriety, and his
personal behavior, not only upon the bench and in the performance of judicial duties, but also in his
everyday life, should be beyond reproach. " Paragraph 29 of the Canons of Judicial Ethics likewise
provides that a judge
"should not accept any presents or favors from litigants or from lawyers practicing before him. "
JUDGE TERESITA DIZON-CAPULONG is charged 1 with gross incompetence, gross
ignorance of the law and grave misconduct in a complaint filed on 15 November 1991 with the
Office of the Court Administrator by the spouses Jose P. Uy and Rizalina C. Uy.
Respondent Judge committed the following highly irregular and questionable acts indicative of
gross ignorance of the law and grave misconduct prejudicial to the public interest, to wit: (a)
respondent Judge cancelled on mere motion of a party the titles of complainants Jose P. Uy and
Rizalina Cortes, who were not parties to the case, to the great prejudice of the latter; (b)
respondent Judge issued two (2) orders which disregarded the Decision of the Court of Appeals
annulling her disputed Order of 7 June 1989; (c) respondent Judge issued another order
authorizing the sale of the other properties previously titled in the complainant Jose P. Uy; (d)
respondent Judge issued still two (2) more orders approving deeds of sale even after this Court
had already affirmed the Decision of the Court of Appeals annulling her Order of 7 June 1989.
Issue: Is the respondent committed acts of gross ignorance?
Held: Yes. The judge is the visible representation of law and justice from whom the people draw
their will and awareness to obey the law. For the judge to return that regard, the latter must be
the first to abide by the law and weave an example for the others to follow. The judge should be
studiously careful to avoid even the slightest infraction of the law.
In cancelling the titles of complainants over their properties on mere motion of a party and
without affording them due process, respondent Judge violated her sworn obligation to uphold
the law and promote the administration of justice. It has been held that if the law is so
elementary, not to know it or to act as if one does not know it, constitutes gross ignorance of the
The foregoing transgressions of respondent Judge are further aggravated by her refusal to
abide by the Decision of the Court of Appeals annulling her Order of 7 June 1989 which directed
the cancellation of the titles of complainants.
124 FEDERICO S. CALILUNG, complainant,
Facts: There was an entrapment operation conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation involving
Judge Wilfredo S. Suriaga.
The complaint alleged that:
1. Calilung was the complainant in a case against one Emiliano D. Joven in an ejectment case docketed as
Civil Case No. 98-116 pending before the MTC of Angeles City presided by Judge Suriaga.
2. While the case was still pending with him, Judge Suriaga approached Calilung soliciting the amount of
Five Hundred Thousand Pesos (P500,000.00) in exchange for a favorable decision in Civil Case No. 98116.

3. Calilung haggled with the judge and requested that the amount be lowered to Three Hundred Thousand
Pesos (P300,000.00) as that was all he could afford, to which Judge Suriaga agreed.
4. Sometime thereafter in November 1998, Calilung delivered the money to Judge Suriaga at the latter's
residence at Regina Street, Sta. Maria
Village II, Balibago, Angeles City.
5. On December 4, 1998, Judge Suriaga rendered a decision in favor of Calilung.
6. Emiliano Joven eventually appealed the decision to the Regional Trial Court (RTC) sometime in
January 1999, which appeal, now docketed as Civil Case No. 9314, was raffled to Branch 58 in Angeles
City which was presided by respondent Judge Philbert Iturralde.
7. Thereafter, Judge Suriaga again approached Calilung and informed him that there will be no problem
with the appeal, because Judge Iturralde assured him of a favorable decision in consideration of the
amount of Two Hundred Fifty Thousand (P250,000.00) Pesos.
8. Calilung made it appear that he agreed to Judge Suriagas proposal. The latter the n directed Calilung to
prepare and deliver the money to him on Monday, April 9, 1999, at Judge Suriagas residence.
9. Before the due date, Calilung approached the NBI requesting the Bureau to apprehend the two judges
while in the act of receiving the money xxx [to] cut short their illegal activities and to deter them from
victimizing other litigants in the future.
10. Calilung was not able to talk to Judge Iturralde personally. It was his counsel, Atty. Marlon Lauder,
who talked to Judge Iturralde regarding Calilungs case. According to Atty. Lauder,
Judge Iturralde advised him to talk to Judge Suriaga instead as they had already come to an agreement
regarding the matter.
Two Informations were filed against Judge Suriaga by State Prosecutor Rosalina P. Aquino for
"Corruption of Public Officials (Art. 212, RPC) [CriminalCase No. OMB-1-99-0726]" and for "Violation
of Sec. 3(a) of R.A. No. 3019 otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act." [Criminal
Case No. OMB-1-00-0727]."
Issue: Does the respondent judge commit a serious misconduct in office.
Held: Yes. As regards to respondent Suriaga, the Investigating Justice observed that the testimonies of the
Calilung spouses were replete with important details that could not be ignored. He pointed out that mere
denials and an unsatisfactory refutation on the part of Judge Suriaga to prove his innocence do not
persuade to establish the falsity of complainants testimony and that of his wife. It was no less than a
bribe for Judge Suriaga to demand and receive money from a party in a case before him for which act he
has no place in the judiciary. Neither is respondent judges improper and illegal act, of asking from
complainant the amount of P250,000.00 to be given to Judge Iturralde, to be condoned.
The Court agrees with the foregoing findings and conclusion of Justice Ramirez. The culpability of
respondent Judge Suriaga for serious misconduct has been established not just by substantial evidence
which suffices in an administrative investigation but by an overwhelming preponderance thereof. The
testimony of supervising Agent Julma Dizon-Dapilos who posed as yaya of complainants two-year old
son during the entrapment operation demolishes whatever credibility respondents proferred defense has.
Dizon-Dapilos, a disinterested observer in addition to being a law enforcement officer corroborated the
testimony of the complainant and his wife. She was a direct witness to the entrapment operation and,
equally important, respondent judge failed to present any reason why her testimony should be disbelieved.
The Code of Judicial Conduct provides:
Rule 2.01 A judge should so behave at all times as to promote public confidence in the integrity and
impartiality of the judiciary.
Respondent Wilfredo S. Suriaga is DISMISSED from the service with forfeiture of all retirement benefits
and leave credits and with prejudice to re-employment in any branch or instrumentality of the government,
including government-owned or controlled corporations.


Facts: A memorandum was issued by Executive Judge Pedro M. Sunga and addressed to Hon. Daniel
Liangco. In compliance with the said Memorandum, Judge Liangco submitted a letter dated August 20,
1999 informing Judge Sunga that the twenty-nine (29) cases for violation of P.D. 1602 indicated in the
monthly report for July, 1999, were all assigned to Branch 1 of the MTC, San Fernando, Pampanga where
Judge Liangco presides. When Judge Sunga was going over the attachment (Filed Criminal Cases for the
Month of July, 1999), he noticed that there were actually fifty-five (55) jueteng cases filed during the
said period. He also noticed that out of the said fifty-five (55) cases, fifty-three (53) were assigned to
Branch 1. Judge Sunga required respondent Executive Judge Liangco to explain in writing the

manner or conduct of raffling of cases in the said Municipal Trial Court and how the abovedescribed circumstances came about.
Jueteng cases not yet raffled together with the records are automatically retained by Branch I without
subjecting the case to the formalities of the procedure in raffling of cases, as mandated by Supreme Court
Circular No. 7 dated September 23, 1974, despite request or demand by the undersigned for their return,
contrary to the allegation of the Executive Judge in his letter dated August 20, 1999 that the 29 cases
(actually 53 out of 55 as correctly noticed by Your Honor and as reflected) for Violation of PD 1602
indicated in our monthly report for July, 1999 were raffled or assigned to Branch I.
Issue: Did the respondent judge violate Circular 7?
Held: Yes. The court found that the act of respondent Judge in issuing the Memorandum dated
September 1, 1998 under which certain cases are not subjected to the required raffle, in violation of
Supreme Court Circular No. 7, constitutes a serious breach of his duty as the Executive Judge of the MTC
of San Fernando, Pampanga and calls for the imposition of administrative sanctions. The OCA also
recommended that respondent Judge Liangco be dismissed from the service, with forfeiture of all
retirement benefits and accrued leave credits, with prejudice to re-employment in any branch of
government including government-owned or controlled corporations.
The questioned acts of respondent Judge Liangco constitute a clear breach of his duty as a judge. The
Code of Judicial Conduct mandates that: A judge should so behave at all times as to promote public
confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary.
126 EDITHA O. CATBAGAN, complainant, vs. JUDGE FELIXBERTO P. BARTE, respondent
Facts: Complainant Editha O. Catbagan charged respondent Judge Felixberto P. Barte of the
1st Municipal Circuit Trial Court (MCTC), Tobias Fornier, Antique with grave and serious
misconduct.Complainant also received information that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,
Inc. (Church) was interested in buying land in the Province of Antique. She immediately approached
respondent judge and requested him to assist her in the prospective transaction. Together with a certain
Abraham Pedria, the three agreed that in case they succeeded in brokering the sale of the properties to
the Church, their commission would be divided in a certain manner.
The agreement was to put on writing, the respondent judge allegedly answered: A municipal trial judge
occupies the forefront of the judicial arm that is the closest in reach to the public he serves and he must
accordingly act at all times with great constancy and utmost probity.
Since the Church transacted with respondent only, it paid the price of the properties to him. Respondent
then delivered the amount due to the vendors.
When complainant heard that the vendors had been paid, she demanded her commission from respondent.
However, respondent offered her only P25,000 for the two transactions, excluding the one in Hamtic.
Complainant later learned that respondent received a P435,226.55 commission from the Aurea Clarin
transaction alone.
Complainant reminded respondent of their agreement but respondent challenged complainant to go to
court. Instead of pursuing her claim in a civil suit, however, complainant opted to file the present
administrative case against respondent on September 17, 2001.

Issue: Did the respondent have administrative liability for his admitted financial and business dealings.
Held: Yes. The Code of Judicial Conduct mandates that [a] judge shall refrain from financial and
business dealings that tend to reflect adversely on the courts impartiality, interfere with the proper
performance of judicial activities, or increase involvement with lawyers or persons likely to come before
the court. A judge should so manage investments and other financial interests as to minimize the number
of cases giving grounds for disqualification. Canon 25 of the Canons of Judicial Ethics also cautions a
judge from x x x making personal investments in enterprises which are apt to be involved in litigation in
his court x x x.
Inciong vs De Guia
A.M. No. R-249-RTJ September 17, 1987
Complainant Atty. Ceferino Inciong charged the respondent judge of the RTC of Balayan, Batangas of
Inducing Court Employees to Falsify Court Records. The Office of the Court Administrator, upon
determining the existence of a prima facie evidence, held that an investigation was in order. On March 10,
1987, the petitioner orally withdrew his complaint. As a result, the investigator recommended that the
charges against the respondent judge be dismissed. However, a second investigation was conducted. In
the said investigation, two witnesses testified against the respondent judge. These two witnesses alleged
that sometime in November 1984, they were called by the respondent judge to her chambers. They were
then asked to affix their signatures on the information filed in the criminal case of People of the
Philippines vs Ruben Rodriguez, et al. The respondent judge told the victims that they had failed to sign
the said information as one of the criminal cases that were raffled to the respondent judges sala. The
witnesses complied. However, upon further inquiry, the witnesses later on found out that such case was
never raffled to the respondent judges sala. They also noted that the said respondent judge seemed to be
very eager to handle the said case. As a response, the respondent judge admitted that such raffling of
cases indeed did not take place. However, she contended that that practice of assigning cases was
common in the RTC of Balayan, Batangas.
Issue: Does the respondent judges contention exempt her from the any criminal or administrative
No. After reviewing the results of the investigation, the court finds respondent Judge Leticia S. Mariano
de Guia guilty of misconduct and irregularities in office. The court found the respondent judges
statement that such practice was common in the RTC of Balayan, Batangas to be alarming. It reiterated
that such practice is contrary to the law and must therefore not be tolerated. A fine equivalent to three
months of pay is hereby imposed on the judge. Aside from this fine, a stern WARNING was also given to
the respondent judge that repetition of the same offense of commission of a similar offense will be dealt
with more severely.
128 In Re: Report on the Judicial and Financial Audit Conducted in the Municipal Trial Court in Cities,
Koronadal City
Facts: Judge Agustin Sardido is the presiding judge of MTCC of Koronadal City. The audit team found
that the said Judge usually arrived late at work. On Mondays, he would report only in the afternoons. Due
to his habitual tardiness, court sessions usually held late. They also found out that Judge Sardido allowed
Mr. Rufino Vargas, a non-employee of the court, to discharge duties and functions of a court interpreter
without the approval of Office of the Court Administrator. He was also found out that hes involved in
certain misappropriation Court Funds upon admission of borrowing some money in it. The team found
him guilty of numerous ignorance of the law and grave misconduct allegations.
Issue: Is Judge Sardido guilty of violation of Judicial Ethics particularly his Integrity as the Head of the
Held: Yes, the Supreme Court held in the affirmative. Judge Sardido is guilty of Grave Misconduct and
negligence of his responsibilities as the Head of that Branch. In particular, he violated Canon 5.04 of
Judicial conduct for misappropriating some funds of the Court. The Judge is the visible representation of

the law, and more importantly, of justice. It is from him that the people draw their will and awareness to
obey the law. For the judge to return the regard, he must be the first to abide by the law and weave an
example for others to follow.
In re: Suspension of Mariano Jesus Cuenco, attorney
This is a proceeding relating to the suspension of Atty. Mariano J. Cuenco from the practice of his
proffesion. As a result of his conduct towards the court and his acts executed in relation to certain cases,
the respondent was ordered to appear before the CFI of Borongan, Samar to explain before the said court
why he should not be punished for contempt. Following this, a telegram was sent to the sheriff of the
Province of Cebu to compel Atty. Cuenco to appear before Judge Nicolas Capistrano. Respondent,
however, failed to appear before the court. As a result, the court entered an order suspending him from the
practice of law from the date of the notification until the final disposition by the Supreme Court. The case
was then endorsed to the Office of the Attorney-General for investigation which then recommended that
the record be returned to the CFI of Leyte and instructed that Cuenco be given the opportunity to defend
himself. In his response, Cuenco stated that he had every intention to appear before the said court on the
date. However, certain external factors prevented him from doing so. At that time, he was still in Cebu
and was unfortunately unable to find a boat that could transport him to Borongan. Aside from this, he was
never informed that his suspension was to be taken up by the Honorable Judge Capistrano.
Is Attorney Cuencos suspension valid?
No. The Supreme Court held that a lawyer cannot be suspended from the practice of his profession
without giving him an opportunity to defend himself. As such, the order of the suspension of Atty.
Mariano J. Cuenco has been vacated. The case has been remanded to the CFI of Leyte and the court
ordered that the respondent be given ample opportunity to explain himself before the court.
Trinidad-Pe Aguirre vs Baltazar
A.M. No. P-05-1957. February 7, 2005
The case is about the letter complaint dated April 12, 2004 filed by Judge Trinidad-Pe Aguirre against
Eduardo Baltazar, a Legal Researcher of the RTC of Caloocan City. The said judge alleged that the
respondent behaved in a way that was unbecoming of a court employee. Complainant judge required her
staff to submit a written explanation regarding their repeated absences. The respondent was one of these
staff members. Because of the respondents failure to comply with the required written explanation, the
complainant judge imposed a fine against him amounting to P500.00. The complainant judge alleged that
she charged the respondent for misbehaviour for filing a leave of absence without seeking her permission
first. In doing so, the said respondent allegedly undermined the judges authority. The respondent on the
other hand was surprised by the charge against him. This was because he was already fined and detailed
to another office by the complainant judge prior to this charge. The respondent also reasoned that Judge
Aguirre was at a seminar in Tagaytay City at the time that he filed his leave of absence and he could no
longer wait for the judges return. He further emphasized that he had no intention to undermine the
authority of Judge Aguirre and that he acted in good faith. He then averred that the Judges display of
authority was alarming and that he felt harassed.
Did Judge Trinidad-Pe Aguirre go beyond her jurisdiction as a judge in punishing the respondent?
Yes. The court held that there was no showing that the respondent acted in bad faith in failing to secure
Judge Aguirres written permission before taking a leave of absence. It also held that the said judge had
no authority to impose a fine on the respondent. Although the judges are given the authority to organize
and supervise the court personnel, they must do so with caution and circumspection. With regard to the

case at bar, the court warned complainant Judge Thelma Canlas Trinidad-Pe Aguirre to be more careful in
the exercise of her supervisory authority over the personnel of her court. The court then dismissed the
complaint against Eduardo T. Baltazar for lack of merit.
131 . Dimacuha v. Concepcion
G.R. No. L-60842, September 30, 1982
Facts:Petitioner Rolando Dimacuha, is accused in a homicide case pending before respondent judge.
Petitioner filed for certiorari with preliminary mandatory injunction to restrain the judge from proceeding
with the case and for its transfer to another sala after respondent judge denied his inhibition. Petitioner
alleges that he was confronted by the brother of the late Ernesto Omandap who bluntly told him that his
conviction is assured. The past actuations of respondent Judge tended to lend truth to the rumor that
petitioners lawyer was constrained to file an "Urgent Motion for Inhibition with Prayer to Transfer
Venue". Respondent denied the Motion for Inhibition and since then, respondent has scheduled the trial of
giving no chance and time to confer with petitioners de-parte counsel. Respondent denied the charges as
baseless and erroneous. He also explained in detail that the defense counsel was remiss in entering his
appearance and in filing necessary motions, unprepared to conduct cross examination, wrong in not
graciously accepting the court's suggestion to present concrete evidence, and culpable of conduct
offensive to the dignity of the court and of hostility and open defiance to the lawful orders of the court. In
an investigation conducted by the Solicitor General, it was found out that the start of dispute occurred
when de parte counsel Atty. Castro and respondent judge had their disagreements as regards how to crossexamine. Castro was not present at the next hearing and another counsel de oficio, Atty. Nestor Desacad,
undertook cross-examining in behalf of petitioner. Considering that petitioner stands accused of a serious
crime of homicide, that petitioner's de parte counsel has lost rapport and empathy with respondent judge,
and considering further that the motion of petitioner to inhibit and transfer venue appears unresolved, Sol
Gen commented that the administration of justice will be best served by transferring the venue of
Criminal Case TG-752-81 to another branch of CFI-Cavite.
Issue:Is the Solicitor General correct in recommending that the case be transferred to another CFI branch?
Held: Yes. A judge may not be legally prohibited from sitting in a litigation. But when suggestion is made
of record that he might be induced to act in favor of one party or with bias or prejudice against a litigant
arising out of circumstance reasonably capable of inciting such a state of mind, he should conduct a
careful self-examination. He should exercise his discretion in a way that the people's faith in the courts of
justice is not impaired. That passion on the part of a judge may be generated because of serious charges of
misconduct against him by a suitor or his counsel, is not altogether remote. He is a man, subject to the
frailties of other men. He should, therefore, exercise great care and caution before making up his mind to
act or withdraw from a suit where that party or counsel is involved. He could in good grace inhibit
himself where that case could be heard by another judge and where no appreciable prejudice would be
occasioned to others involved therein. On the result of his decisions to sit or not to sit may depend to a
great extent the all-important confidence in the impartiality of the judiciary.
132. Julius Neri vs. Jesus S. De la Pea
A.M. No. RTJ-05-1896, April 29, 2005

Facts: Unsatisfied with the decision of the previous judge, Emmanuel Aznar filed motion for
reconsideration with motion to re-raffle the civil case which led to the court presided by respondent Judge
Dela Pena. Respondent granted the motion and ruled in favor of Aznar. Atty. Julius Neri, Aznars counsel
filed a complaint charging respondent with dishonesty. He alleged that respondent, contrary to his
pronouncement in his order, had rendered his decision without ever having read the transcripts of the case.
Complainant also charged respondent with gross ignorance of the law and/or incompetence. He alleged
that respondent had improperly considered as a business record Aznars computer print-out which in
reality did not meet the requisites to be rightly considered as such. Complainant went on to say that
respondents incompetence and dishonesty showed in his failure to appreciate and evaluate Citibanks
extensive documentary evidence which clearly established that it did not blacklist Aznars Mastercard.
Complainant also pointed out that the damages respondent awarded to Aznar were scandalously
exorbitant. Respondent contended that he had in fact read the transcripts, having received copies thereof

attached to an ex parte manifestation filed by plaintiff Aznar. He also defended the amount of damages he
awarded by comparing them to those awarded in a 1973 case, with inflation taken into account.
Complainant then filed his reply to the comment,[13] assailing the ex parte manifestation which respondent
had supposedly relied upon in deciding the case. He pointed out that respondent should not have even
considered the said manifestation because Citibank had not been served a copy and it was filed after
office hours.
Issue: Did respondent judge violate Canon 3 of the Code of Judicial Ethics?
Held: Yes. Even though he was under no obligation to disregard Aznars ex parte manifestation, he
should have at least called attention to its irregularity, both by admonishing Aznar and by informing the
adverse party of its filing.Citibank was totally unaware of its existence ran seriously afoul of the precepts
of fair play, especially since respondent only mentioned the document after this administrative case was
filed against him. Indeed, there seems to be something gravely amiss in respondents sense of fairness
and righteousness, the primary requisites of a good judge.In addition, a P16.2 million award for damages
to Aznar shows extreme bias and bad intent since the only record he has actually read came only from
Aznar. As a member of the judiciary, respondents every action is supposed to be beyond reproach and
above suspicion. By acting on a document which was sorely defective (for two reasons: failure to serve a
copy on the adverse party and failure to file it during office hours), and by making an egregiously large
award of damages in favor of plaintiff Aznar, he inevitably opened himself up to suspicion of having
entered into a dirty, secret deal with Aznar and thereby severely tarnished the impartiality with which he
was at all times supposed to conduct himself.
133. Dela Cruz v. Bersamira
A.M. No. RTJ-00-1567, July 24, 2000
Facts: Complainant Fernando Dela Cruz is a concerned citizen who filed a complaint with the Office of
the Court Administrator against respondent Judge Jesus Bersamira for Violation of R.A. No. 3019,
otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards
for Public Officials and the Code of Judicial Conduct. The case stemmed from three (3) criminal cases
assigned to respondent. The complaint, in sum, alleges that respondent as the presiding judge in whose
sala the said cases are pending, gravely abused his discretion and exhibited evident partiality by: 1)
socializing in posh restaurants particularly in Marios Restaurant, Quezon City and the Shangri-la EDSA
Plaza with then Congresswoman Venice Agana, mother of the accused Roberto Agana, together
with their counsel, Atty. Narciso Cruz; 2) issuing unreasonable orders for postponement which unjustly
delay the administration of justice; and 3) allowing the two accused, Roberto Agana and his live-in
partner, Sarah Resula, to submit to a drug test thereby postponing the trial of the cases indefinitely.
Associate Appellate Court Justice Delilah Vidallon-Magtolis conducted the investigation and found out
that the respondents official conduct had not been entirely free from the appearance of impropriety,
neither has the respondent remained above suspicion in his official actuations in connection with the
criminal cases involving Agana and Resula. He has fallen short of the requirements of probity and
independence. A judges conduct should be above reproach, and in the discharge of his official duties, he
should be conscientious, thorough, courteous, patient, punctual, just, impartial.
Issue: Did Judge Bersamira violate Canon 3, Section 2 of The Code of Judicial Ethics?
Held: Yes.The character of a judge is perceived by the people not only through his official acts but also
through his private morals as reflected in his external behavior. It is therefore paramount that a judges
personal behavior both in the performance of his duties and his daily life, be free from the appearance of
impropriety as to be beyond reproach.Being the subject of constant public scrutiny, a judge should freely
and willingly accept restrictions on conduct that might be viewed as burdensome by the ordinary citizen.
A judge should personify judicial integrity and exemplify honest public service. The personal behavior of
a judge, both in the performance of official duties and in private life should be above suspicion. A judge
is not only required to be impartial; he must also appear to be impartial. Public confidence in the
judiciary is eroded by irresponsible or improper conduct of judges. Fraternizing with litigants tarnishes
this appearance. It was, thus, held that it is improper for a judge to meet privately with the accused
without the presence of the complainant.Be that as it may, credence can not be accorded to the indictment

that respondent judge had been socializing with the congresswoman-mother of one of the accused as well
as accuseds counsel considering that complainant neither testified nor produced any witness to
corroborate this charge.
134. Spouses Nazareno v. Judge Almario
Adm. Matter No. RTJ-94-1195, February 26, 1997
Facts: In 1990 while Judge Almario was still the presiding judge of Trece Martires City, respondent judge
had a conversation with petitioner Elisa Nazareno, telling her that he needed money as his retirement is
coming near and that she should help him. In another incident, the judge told her husband, Romeo
Nazareno that he plans on replacing him as administrator of the estate because of his conviction in a
criminal case filed against him by his sister Natividad. The spouses have given the judge P10,000 on two
separate occasions. They have given food for respondent judge on two (2) occasions; first, for a gathering
of respondent judge's family and friends at the Seaside Beach resort and another, for the Christmas party
of the judge's court staff at the Aroma Beach resort. Lastly, the judge asked Elisa to encash his salary
check for P7,500 but the respondent judge did not give her the salary check. Respondent Judge denied
ever receiving any money from the Nazareno spouses. He maintained that the allegations in the complaint
against him are all fabricated and were filed because the Nazarenos had been receiving adverse rulings
and orders from him in several cases. Judge Almario also denied receiving any food from the Nazarenos.
He stated that the food for the Christmas party of his staff at the Aroma Beach Resort was contributed by
friends and relatives of staff members.
Issue: Does the acts of Judge Enrique Almario constitute gross dishonesty and misconduct?
Held: Yes. The Court finds sufficient evidence to find respondent Judge Enrique M. Almario liable for
gross dishonesty and misconduct. The time honored rule is that a public official whose duty is to apply
the law and dispense justice, be he a judge of a lower court or tribunal or a justice of the appellate courts,
should not only be impartial, independent and honest but should be believed and perceived to be impartial,
independent and honest.It has to be stressed once more to all who are sworn to render decisions in actual
controversies that a decision which correctly applies the law and jurisprudence will nevertheless be
subject to questions of impropriety when rendered by a magistrate or tribunal believed to be less than
impartial and honest. It is thus the duty of members of the bench to avoid any impression of impropriety
to protect the image and integrity of the judiciary which in recent times has been the object of criticism
and controversy. The Court agrees with the conclusions of Justice Morales that complainant Elisa
Nazareno had convincingly proven having given: a) P10,000.00 to respondent judge on two (2) occasions
and b) cash for respondent's salary check. The testimony of Mrs. Nazareno was undented even when
subjected to an extended cross examination by respondent judge. Respondents denial that he had asked
for and accepted food contributions was contradicted by his own witnesses, Roldan Alcantara and Jose
Salvadora Jr., who are both employees of the court. Nothing in the testimonies of these two (2) court
employees shows any motivation other than to tell the truth.
135. Jugueta v. Boncaros
Adm. Matter No. 440-CFI, September 30, 1974
Facts: Petitioner Marissa Jugueta was the offended party in a criminal complaint for rape filed with the
Court of First Instance of Tarlac against Ruben Domingo which is presided by respondent Judge
Alejandro Boncaros. Before the trial, the prosecuting fiscal, Wilfredo Macaraeg, called the accused and
the offended party to the chambers of Judge Boncaros. Marissa's mother, Remedios Jugueta, who was in
the Courtroom was not however invited by the Fiscal to be present at the conference. Ruben and Marissa
seated themselves in front of the table of Judge Boncaros who at the time was seated by his desk. Ruben
talked to Marissa and proposed marriage but Marissa declined the offer. After a brief conversation,
Marissa stood up to leave the room and when she was near the door Ruben kissed her on the cheek.
Seeing that act of Ruben, Judge Boncaros remarked: "Bakit sa pisngi hindi sa labi" meaning: "why the
cheek not the lips." Marissa reported what transpired inside the chambers of the Judge including the
remark of the latter, to her mother Remedios Jugueta, who at that time was in the courtroom waiting for
the trial of Marissa's complaint. Believing that the prosecuting fiscal and the trial Judge were favoring the
accused, Ruben Domingo, as shown in their attempt to settle amicably the criminal case, Remedios

Jugueta filed the instant complaint against Judge Boncaros. Respondent claims that he simply allowed the
fiscal to call the accused and the offended party for a talk inside his office, that he did not take part in
their conversation and so he was not aware of any proposal of marriage, and that when he made that
remark "bakit sa pisngi hindi sa labi" he did so in anger when he saw Ruben kiss Marissa.
Issue: Did respondent failed to observe Canon 3, Section 4 of the New Code of Judicial Conduct?
Held: Yes. One who occupies an exalted position in the administration of justice must pay a high price for
the honor bestowed upon him, for his private as well as his official conduct must at all times be free from
the appearance of impropriety. Respondents action of allowing to use his chambers for conference is an
act which exposes himself and the high office he holds to the suspicion that he was interested and was
intervening in the settlement of the criminal complaint. The use of some amount of prudence would have
deterred respondent from tolerating the act of the prosecuting fiscal in bringing together the parties in that
criminal case to the exclusion of the victim's mother who all the time was in the courtroom, especially
since under the law it is the marriage of the offender to the offended party which extinguishes the criminal
action. Respondent's assertion that he uttered those words because he was indignant over the act
committed by Ruben is unbelievable and borders on the ridiculous. The words used by the respondent
obviously encouraged rather than condemned the act of Ruben in kissing Marissa and, as a matter of fact,
for him the kiss on the cheek was not even enough. Under the circumstances, we look upon this remark of
respondent Judge not only uncalled for but also of unbecoming levity, offensive to and inconsiderate of
the aggrieved feelings of the rape victim, Marissa.
136 People of the Philippines vs Hon. Ireneo Gako
Facts: This is originally a petition for inhibition of the respondent judge to try a criminal case for alleged
impartiality and bias among the accused. Antecedent facts are the case was subsequently raffled to the
respondent judge because the CA previously inhibited another one named Judge Agana for the alleged
collusion as she repeatedly sustained the objections of the defense every time the prosecution attempted to
establish the conspiracy to kill the victim. When it was fortunately in the sala of Judge Gako, he issued a
motion to grant the petition for bail of the accused.
Issue: is Judge Gako guilty of gross ignorance of the law and should be inhibited from proceeding the
Held: Yes, Judge Gako is guilty of partiality as shown by him granting a petition for bail without a
hearing. To successfully disqualify a judge on the ground of bias or partiality, there must be concrete
proof that a judge has a personal interest in the case and his bias is shown to have stemmed from an extrajudicial source. This precept springs from the presumption that a judge shall decide on the merits of a
case with an unclouded vision of its facts. The inhibition was affirmed by the SC.
People vs Kho
G.R. No. 139381. April 20, 2001
A murder case was filed before the RTC of Quezon City against Kho, et al. This case was raffled to the
sala of Judge Bersamin. During the pendency of the case, Kho applied for bail but was denied on the
ground that the evidence against him and his co-accused was strong enough as to oppose their claim of
right to bail. On their third petition, however, the presiding judge approved the petition for bail of Kho
and Quidato. This was because of the prosecutions failure to present evidence that directly linked the two
accused to the crime. On January 8, 1998, Judge Bersamin issued an Order that inhibited himself from
further hearing the case. This, according to the said judge, was done in order to dispel any rumours that
questioned his objectivity in approving Khos petition for bail.
Was the voluntary inhibition of Judge Bersamin an exercise of sound discretion?
No. The Court of Appeals held that the order of Judge Bersamin inhibiting himself from the case was
rendered in excess of jurisdiction. The court ordered the said judge to proceed with the trial of the

criminal case until the termination thereof, unless and/or until other legal obstacles other than his
voluntary inhibition exists or may in the future exist and prevent further proceedings.
138Ricardo Gutierrez vs Arsenio Santos
Facts: Gutierrez commenced the present action for mandamus against the Hon. Arsenio Santos, the
Secretary of Public Works and Communications, the Department Investigator and the parties who filed
the complaint against him, for the purpose of compelling the aforesaid Judge "to proceed, continue with
the hearing and take cognizance of Civil Case No. 1520 of the Court of First Instance of Pampanga." The
judge inhibited himself. Such being the case, by disqualifying himself to sit in this case, not because he
has been a counsel for the above-named petitioner, which is entirely false, neither because of "extremada
delicadeza", but because his opinion given in the aforesaid letter might, some way or another, influence
on his decision in the case at bar.
Issue: Is the contention of Judge Santos regarding his inhibition valid?
Facts: Yes, the Supreme Court held in the affirmative. In the present case the respondent judge himself
has candidly stated that the opinion expressed by him in a letter addressed by him as counsel for the
petitioner. In view of these circumstances, they are constrained to agree with His Honor that the opinion
thus expressed by him years ago "might, some way or another, influence his decision" in the case before
him. This has led not to grant the mandamus for proper administration of justice.
Atienza vs Brillantes
A.M. No. MTJ-92-706. March 29, 1995
The case is about a complaint filed by Lupo Atienca for Gross Immorality and Appearance of Impropriety
against Judge Francisco Brillantes, Jr. of the MTC of Manila. The complainant alleged that the he has two
children with Yolanda De Castro. In December of 1991, he caught the respondent judge sleeping on his
(complainants) bed. He later found out that the said respondent judge had been cohabiting with De
Castro. He also alleged that the respondent prevented him from visiting his children and even alienated
the affection of his children for him. Aside from this, the complainant presented evidence before the court
showing that the respondent judge was already married to Zenaida Ongkiko and has five children. As a
response, Judge Brillanted denied that he was married to Ongkiko but admitted that he has five children
with her. Their marriage was allegedly invalid because they lacked a marriage contract. Ongkiko also
abandoned him 17 years ago and left their five children to his custody.
Will the respondent judges contention prosper?
No. According to the Civil Code, a judicial declaration of the nullity of the first marriage is required
before a person who was previously married is allowed to contract a subsequent marriage. The respondent
judge became part of the Bar in 1962. At the time that he married Ongkiko, he was already a lawyer; thus,
he cannot invoke good faith as an excuse for his inability to acquire a marriage license. He was given an
opportunity to correct his mistake when he married Ongkiko for the second time but he failed to do so. It
is, therefore, evident that the respondent failed to mee the standard of moral fitness for membership in the
legal profession. The court, therefore, ordered the dismissal of Judge Francisco Brillanted, Jr. His leave
and retirement benefits have also been forfeited.
Alday v. Cruz
A.M. No. RTJ-00-1530, March 14, 2001
Principle: Deliberate refusal to obey an order of the Supreme Court is a grave misconduct that merits the
supreme penalty of dismissal from the service
This Court promulgated a decision suspending respondent judge Escolastico U. Cruz, Jr., for a period of
one year, after finding him guilty of conduct grossly prejudicial to the service. Respondent judge's
suspension was to have been immediately executory. It appeared, however, that despite our suspension

order, respondent judge continued to discharge the duties and exercise the functions of a judge. In an
explanation, respondent judge stated that he would have been deemed to have abandoned his office as
judge. He pointed out that he had to act on matters pending in his sala lest his docket reach
"unmanageable limits".
We referred this matter to the Office of the Court Administrator for investigation, report, and
Issue: Did respondent violate the New Code of Judicial Conduct for the Philippine Judiciary?
Yes. Effective and efficient administration of justice demands nothing less than a faithful adherence to the
rules and orders laid down by this Court, and in this regard, respondent judge failed to show such
adherence. Instead, he demonstrated his defiance of the Court's clear order that should have been obeyed
by him without delay.
After a thorough evaluation of the records of this case, we agree with the Office of the Court
Administrator that respondent judge's deliberate refusal to obey our order is a grave misconduct that
merits the supreme penalty of dismissal from the service.
141 Jaime Lim Co vs Judge Ruben Plata
Facts: Complainant Co was the private offended party in criminal case filed against spouses Milagros and
Jose Villaceran, respectively, for violation of Batas Pambansa Blg. 22, otherwise known as the Bouncing
Checks Law. These were filed at the sala of the respondent judge and validly ordered warrant of arrest
against the Villacerans. Before the warrant of arrest could be served upon them, the accused Villacerans
voluntarily appeared before the respondent Judge and separately filed Applications for Bail. Respondent
Judge granted bail to the accused Villacerans in the reduced amount of P50,000 each. By virtue of the
property bonds posted by the accused Villacerans, respondent Judge recalled the Warrant of Arrest issued
against them. Complainant Co charged respondent Judge with gross partiality by pointing out the
following irregularities in the Applications for Bail filed by the accused Villacerans, and the grant thereof
by the respondent Judge, which allegedly demonstrated respondent Judges gross partiality for the said
Issue: Is the Judge guilty of impartiality and violation of Judicial ethics?
Held: Yes, The respondent Judge is guilty of violating Canon 2 of the Code of Judicial Ethics for his
failure to avoid the appearance of impropriety. Given that the documents herein had been prepared by his
staff, respondent Judge had the responsibility of reviewing the said documents when submitted to him,
before affixing his signature thereon. Respondent Judges signature carried a lot of weight and could turn
an ordinary piece of paper into an official act of the court, thus, he should have checked, and if necessary,
double-checked, whether the forms were properly filled-out and the information therein were correct, in
order to avoid similar controversies in the future.
142. Martinez v. Pahimulin
Adm. Matter No. 78-MJ, August 30, 1982
Facts: Atty. Buenaventura B. Martinez was cross-examining Pilar Harada, a witness for the defendant,
when opposing counsel objected in such a way that he was suggesting to the witness the answer to the
question. Complainant asked respondent Judge to stop him from coaching the witness and to limit his
objection on legal grounds. Judge Pahimulin told complainant that opposing counsel was 'still talking.'
Atty. Martinez insisted that respondent stop opposing counsel from talking because he was putting into
the mouth of the witness the answer to his question. This remark of complainant angered the judge who,
in a loud voice told him: "You are a disrespectful lawyer." Complainant remarked: 'Then, Your Honor, I
have to quit as a lawyer.' At this juncture, respondent banged his gavel telling complainant: 'You are a
disrespectful lawyer. You talk too much. Complainant was about to make an explanation but respondent
told him: 'Get out. I do not want to hear you. You have already quitted. Petitioner filed complaint
charging him of oppression, inefficiency, discourtesy, dishonesty, intolerance, misconduct and slander.
Issue: Did the respondent judge act with propriety in dealing with the Atty. Martinez?

Held: No. Both the complainant and the respondent were remiss in the observance of their duties in
maintaining the high esteem and regard for the court. As counsel for the plaintiff, complainant was bound
to defend and protect the interest of his client but when respondent judge tried to explain something in
connection with his objection and cautioned him from continuing with his objection as the opposing
counsel was still talking, complainant should have heeded such admonition. For if everybody would be
talking at the same time there will be chaos in the courtroom" and that "on the other hand, the respondent
should not have lost his temper when he was continuedly interrupted by the complainant. Instead of
shouting at the complainant, he should have maintained his composure. While the respect and dignity of
the court had to be upheld, respondent should not have acted with anger and shouted at the lawyer who
must have suffered embarrassment in front of many people. He should have acted with utmost sobriety
and for this he should be censured. "
Principle: Canon 4, section 2 As a subject of constant public scrutiny, judges must accept personal
restrictions that might be viewed as burdensome by the ordinary citizen and should do so freely and
willingly. In particular, judges shall conduct themselves in a way that is consistent with the dignity of the
judicial office.
143. Luzuriaga v. Bromo
Adm. Matter No. 2385-MJ, August 19, 1982
Facts: Jonathan A. Luzuriaga charged Judge Jesus B. Bromo of the with electioneering. He alleged that
respondent Judge, without being appointed as watcher, unduly intervened the proceedings of the Citizens
Election Committee by getting inside the polling center and asked the Chairman of the Citizens Election
Committee to stop the casting of votes, despite the authority given by the Election Registrar. He also
alleges that respondent openly campaigned for all the candidates of the opposition party, and he was the
brain of the election tactics and strategies of the opposition. Lastly, he alleges that respondent personally
intervened in favor of the opposition during the canvassing of votes held at the Tayasan Municipal Hall.
Respondent Judge denied that he interrupted the proceedings, explaining that he merely accompanied his
wife to visit the various voting centers on Election Day as it was already 7:00 P.M.. They noticed that in
Voting Center No. 33 people were crowding and no voting was going on, and the Chairman seemed
confused on what to do, so he asked permission from the Chairman that he be allowed to say something
and suggest a solution to the problem. Commenting on his alleged open campaign for the opposition
candidates, respondent Judge contended that during the campaign period, he was busy with his duties as
Municipal Judge disposing 28 cases during the month of January; that he cannot afford to lose his 18
years of service in the government after having survived the circuitization of the municipal courts through
hard work and efficiency. On the charge of intervention in the canvassing of votes by the Municipal
Board of Canvassers, respondent Judge averred that although he knew beforehand that his wife had
already won as vice-mayor, yet he called the attention of the Board of Canvassers, for the sake of clarity,
to the error it committed in Voting Center No. 10 wherein his wife was credited with only 86 votes
instead of 106 which was listed in the election returns, and that upon noticing their mistake, the Board of
Canvassers corrected their tallies and thanked him for correcting them.
Issue: Is Judge Bromo violated any of the provisions of the Election Code of 1978 relative to the instant
charge of electioneering?
Held: No. The Judge is the visible representation of the law and, above all, a living symbol of justice in
the community in which he serves or resides. In his zeal to uphold the law, a judge should not lose sight
of one basic judicial norm that his official conduct should be free from appearance of impropriety and
more importantly, his personal behavior, not only in the Bench and in the performance of his official
duties but also in his everyday life, should be beyond reproach. The judicial office demands that the
incumbent should conduct himself in such a manner as to merit the respect, reverence and confidence of
the people. As a judicial officer respondent then should have been studiously careful in avoiding the
commission of any transgression on the law, lest his example demoralize the people of the community.
While it is true that respondent Judge is the husband of the vice-mayoral candidate in the January 30,
1980 elections in Tayasan, Negros Oriental, and understandably, it was his duty to protect his wife, still,
he should have been more discreet and judicious in doing An act that would give the impression of

tainting his official conduct and judicial stature with some political hues and overtones, even if he must
take no little pain in seeing to it that his official, as well as private conduct, carries not the least vestige of
impropriety, to preserve the respect and reverence of the people to his office as well as to his person.
Principle: Canon 4, Sec. 6. Judges, like any other citizen, are entitled to freedom of expression, belief,
association and assembly, but in exercising such rights, they shall always conduct themselves in such a
manner as to preserve the dignity of the judicial office and the impartiality and independence of the
Barrera vs Barrera
G.R. No. L-31589. July 31, 1970
Respondent Judge Alfredo Catolico of the CFI of Cavite was cited for contempt and asked why no
disciplinary action should be taken against him. The Counsel for the plaintiff in Barrera v. Barrera
requested that the CFI of Cavite presided over by the Hon. Judge Alfredo Catolico be authorized to
continue with the hearing of the above-entitled case pursuant to Section 3, Rule 22 of the Rules of Court.
They contended that the said case was a pending trial that needed to be decided on. The plaintiff is said to
have one more witness to present before and thereafter she will be willing to rest her case. However, on
this date, this case was not again heard because the new Presiding Judge did not arrive due to bad weather.
As a result, the case exceeded the 3-month expiry period. As a result, the presiding judge held that he may
no longer continue with the trial of the case and thus he dismissed the case. The court ordered the
respondent judge to continue with the trial of the case but the said judge refused to do so. Aside from this,
he further demonstrated his defiance to the orders of the Supreme Court by directing negative comments
towards the said court.
Should Judge Alfredo Catolico be cited for contempt?
Yes. The said judgedespite the fact that he was given the opportunity to defend his nameremained
adamant and obdurate. His explanation was filed on November 24 and it was apparent that further
reflection did not occasion a change of heart. Respondent Judge Alfredo Catalico was therefore
reprimanded by the Supreme Court.
Mamba vs Garcia
A.M. No. MTJ-96-1110. June 15, 2001
This case is about a petition that was filed by the concerned citizens of Tuao, Cagayan denouncing certain
acts of Judge Dominador Garcia of the MTC of Tuao, Cagayan when he handled the case of People vs
Renato Bulatao. The said complaint was treated as an administrative complaint and was refered to
Executive Judge Orlando Beltran for investigation. On August 23, 1996 a case concerning the illegal
possession of firearms was filed against Renato Bulatao before the sala of the respondent judge. The
respondent judge was not present on the first day of the hearing; thus, it was postponed. Butalao then
confided to the NBI agents that the respondent judge offered to dismiss the case against him in exchange
for a certain amount of money. The NBI then conducted an entrapment operation against the respondent
judge; which resulted to the respondents arrest. After the investigation, Executive Judge Beltran then
scheduled hearings for the reception of evidence for the respondent. The respondent judge did not appear
despite due notice; thus, he was deemed to have waived his right to present evidence to show his
innocence. Only his counter-affidavit was considered.
Should Judge Dominador Garcia be held liable for his acts?

Yes. The acts of the respondent Judge were improper; he violated the duty of every Judge to uphold the
integrity of the judiciary and to avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety in all activities. A
judge's official conduct should be free from the appearance of impropriety, and his personal behavior,
not only upon the bench and in the performance of official duties but also in his everyday life, should be
beyond reproach.They must conduct themselves in such a manner that they give no ground for reproach.
The Court, therefore, held that respondent Judge Dominador Garcia is guilty of serious misconduct. He
was then dismissed from service and his leave credits and retirement benefits were forfeited.
146Jordan Oktubre vs Judge Ramon Velasco
Facts: Complainant is the attorney-in-fact of one Peggy Louise DArcy vda. De Paler (DArcy), a nonresident American. DArcy is the widow of Abraham Paler (Abraham), a resident of Maasin City,
Southern Leyte. Respondent Judge is Abrahams nephew. Shortly after his appointment to the MTC
Maasin in March 1998, respondent Judge, with DArcys permission, stayed in the Paler building for a
few days. He sought an extension of his stay but DArcy turned down his request since during her next
visit to the country she would use the room respondent Judge then occupied. Nevertheless, respondent
Judge was able to continue staying in the Paler building by transferring to a room reserved for a sister of
Abraham. a complaint for Grave Misconduct, Abuse of Authority, Oppression, and Gross Ignorance of
the Law filed by Jordan P. Oktubre against Judge Ramon P. Velasco of the Municipal Trial Court, Maasin
City, Southern Leyte due to procurement of illegal arrest warrant and conduct unbecoming of a judge.
Issue: Is the Judge liable for grave misconduct and violation of Judicial Ethics?
Held: Yes. Canon 2, Rule 2.03 of the Code of Judicial Conduct provides:
A judge shall not allow family, social or other relationships to influence judicial conduct or
judgment. The prestige of judicial office shall not be used or lent to advance the private interests of
others, nor convey or permit others to convey the impression that they are in a special position to
influence the judge.
Rule 3.12 of the Code which is substantially similar to Rule 137, Section 1 of the 1964 Rules of Court,[9]
mandates that
A judge should take no part in a proceeding where the judges impartiality might reasonably be
questioned. These cases include, among others, proceedings where:
the judge has personal knowledge of disputed evidentiary facts concerning the proceeding;
the judge served as executor, administrator, guardian, trustee or lawyer in the case or matters in
controversy, or a former associate of the judge served as counsel during their association, or the judge or
lawyer was a material witness therein;
the judges ruling in a lower court is the subject of review;
the judge is related by consanguinity or affinity to a party litigant within the sixth degree or to
counsel within the fourth degree;
the judge knows that the judges spouse or child has a financial interest, as heir, legatee, creditor,
fiduciary, or otherwise, in the subject matter in controversy or in a party to the proceeding, or any other
interest that could be substantially affected by the outcome of the proceeding.
In every instance the judge shall indicate the legal reason for inhibition.
147 Horst Franz Ellert vs Judge Victorio Galapon
Facts: This case was filed by the complainant against the respondent Judge in relation to the latters grave
misconduct, abuse of judicial authority, ignorance of the law, unlawful notarization, perjury and false
testimony. Upon his affidavit regarding his answer to such allegations, Judge Galapon reveals that the
complainant was only doing this to harass him and this was in relation to the case filed by Him against the
former. Also, the judge allegedly subscribed to, and administered the oaths of one Marina Roca and one
Odeth Roca by signing it unlawfully and feloniously. Take note that he is not authorized even by the
Notarial Law to sign such a document.
Issue: Is Judge guilty of unlawful practice of law for signing such document?
Held: Yes, the Supreme Court held in the affirmative. The judge is guilty for such violation. Judges of the
Municipal Trial Courts or Municipal Circuit Trial Courts may perform their functions as notaries

public ex-officio only in the notarization of documents connected with the exercise of their official
functions. They may not undertake the preparation and acknowledgment of documents which bear no
relation to the performance of their functions as judges. As to the charge of False Testimony and Perjury,
the complainant is advised to institute a criminal case with the proper trial court.
148 Reimbert Villareal vs Judge Alejandro Diongzon
Facts: The complaint is basically based on notarization of Judge Diongzon of a deed of Pacto De Retro
Sale. This is in relation of misrepresenting of the said Judge that led to the complainant to face a criminal
complaint for qualified theft from the acts committed regarding the harvest of some coconut of a subject
land. This is in the form of a Real Estate Mortgage which is allegedly misrepresented by the respondent.
The defense of the judge is that he is in good faith because he was under the impression that hes
authorized to do so. But upon learning that the Supreme Court circular prohibiting MTC judges from
notarizing private documents in their capacity as ex-officio notaries public, he immediately desired from
practicing as a notary public and ordered his Clerk of Court to surrender his notarial books to RTC.
Issue: Is Judge Diongzon guilty of unlawful practice of law?
Held: The Supreme Court believe in the contention of Judge Dionzon and finds merit to not imposed a
severe penalty upon decision. The complaint for dishonesty against respondent judge is dismissed and
hereby ordered only to pay fine regarding malpractice. Circular No. I-90 specifically delineates the power
of Municipal Trial Court Judges and Municipal Circuit Trial Court Judges to act as notaries public ex
In these two (2) administrative complaints, respondent Judge Ausberto B. Jaramillo, Jr., of the Regional
Trial Court, Br. 30, San Pablo City, is charged with various corrupt practices detrimental to the
administration of justice.
In the first case complainants allege that Judge Jaramillo in the guise of forging peace between the
litigants was actually demanding money from one of the parties in exchange for a favourable
decision. The Court found him guilty of this charge and was metted out with a 1 month suspension.
The second case was for bribery in which Judge Jaramillo demanded luxury car, money and valuables
from the estate of complainants late grandfather. In his defense Judge Jaramillo stated that he did not
demand for any valuables or money and that the car was not in his possession but in the Court stemming
from a lawful order he issued. He further averred that the times that he used the car was only for
maintenance purposes. Judge Jaramillo was held only administrably liable for these charges.
Violation of Canon 1 and 2 of the Code of Judicial Conduct
While respondent judge may not necessarily be held administratively liable for issuing the orders
complained of, he certainly is accountable for violating Canons 1 and 2 of the Code of Judicial Conduct
and of committing a corrupt practice under Sec. 7, par. (d), of R.A. No. 6713.
The role of the judiciary in bringing justice to conflicting interests in society cannot be overemphasized.
As the visible representation of law and justice, judges are expected to conduct themselves in a manner
that would enhance the respect and confidence of our people in the judicial system. They are particularly
mandated not only to uphold the integrity and independence of the judiciary but also to avoid impropriety
and the appearance of impropriety in their actions. For judges sit as the embodiment of the people's sense
of justice, their last recourse where all other institutions have failed. Sadly, respondent judge carelessly
disregarded these stringent judicial norms. Worse, his acceptance of the Galant Super Saloon for his
personal use and convenience as well as his evident personal interest in it have defiled the "public trust"
character of the judicial office. These serious transgressions cannot be countenanced. By his actions,
respondent has clearly demonstrated his difficulty and inability to keep up with the conduct required of

judges. Consequently, he should not be permitted to stay a minute longer in office. We have repeatedly
held that there is no place in the judiciary for those who cannot meet the exacting standards of judicial
conduct and integrity.
WHEREFORE, for his gross misconduct and violation of Canon 1 of the Code of Judicial Conduct in
A.M. No. RTJ-93-944, and his violation of Sec. 7, par. (d), of R.A. 6713, and Canons 1 and 2 of the Code
of Judicial Conduct in A.M. No. RTJ-93-959, respondent JUDGE AUSBERTO JARAMILLO, JR.,
Regional Trial Court, Branch 30, San Pablo City, is DISMISSED from the service with prejudice to
reinstatement or appointment to any public office, including government-owned or controlled
corporations, with forfeiture of all retirement benefits and privileges, if any. This dismissal shall be
immediately executory.
Aquino vs. Valenciano
The doctrine is undisputed that no court has the power to interfere by injunction with the judgments or
orders of another court of concurrent jurisdiction having the power to grant the relief sought by injunction.
1 But this has not dissuaded respondent Judge Julito B. Valenciano from issuing the controversial
restraining order of 21 October 1992 for which he is now administratively charged.
The complainant filed a case of robbery against certain Romeo Matias and several John Does. The Court
granted a search and seizure order for the fish cages that were subject of the complaint. while the law
enforcement officers were about to finish implementing the order, respondent Judge Julito B. Valenciano
of the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Polangui-Libon, Albay, granted an urgentex-parte petition for the
issuance of a restraining order and/or writ of preliminary injunction filed by Romeo Matias as an incident
to a complaint for grave coercion against herein complainant Renato V. Aquino and others directing the
accused "to desist from uprooting and gathering the fish cages belonging to Romeo Matias.
On the basis of the foregoing circumstances, complainants now charge respondent Judge with gross
ignorance of the law, abuse of authority, bias and malicious attempt to hinder, delay and frustrate the
administration of justice.
Respondent in his answer alleged that he was not aware that an order of search and seizure was issued by
another court that first gained cognizance of the complaint.
No court has the power to interfere by injunction with the judgments or orders of another court of
concurrent jurisdiction having the power to grant the relief sought by injunction.
Respondent Judge cannot invoke lack of knowledge of the existence of the search and seizure order
simply because of the alleged absence of concrete evidence to that effect by complainants at the time he
issued the restraining order. The fallacy of this argument is readily discernible as the complainants were
not given any change to establish that concrete evidence prior to the issuance of the restraining order.
Moreover, it was explicitly stated in the restraining order that the fishing cages allegedly owned by
Matias were being uprooted and taken away by Aquino and his group by virtue of an alleged search and
seizure order issued by the Municipal Judge of Buhi, Camarines Sur. This information was conveyed to
respondent Judge through the testimonies of Matias himself and his witnesses.
WHEREFORE, for issuing in grave abuse of discretion the subject temporary restraining order that would
interfere with or frustrate the implementation of an order of another court of co-equal jurisdiction,
respondent Judge Julito B. Valenciano should be as he is hereby FINED P15,000.00 with WARNING
that a commission of the same or similar act in the future will be dealt with more severely.

Petitioner Rodolfo Parayno is the incumbent municipal mayor of Urdaneta, Pangasinan. The other
petitioners, namely, Clemartin Arboleda, Eduardo Perez, Casimiro Carancho, Diosdado Samson, Maximo
Sumera and Marcelino Dela Cruz, are members of the Sangguniang Bayan of the municipality who, along
with Parayno, are the protestees in separate election protests now still pending with the court a quo.
This petition for certiorari seeks to set aside the orders of respondent Judge Iluminado Meneses of Branch
49, Regional Trial Court, of Urdaneta, Pangasinan, voluntarily inhibiting himself from hearing the
election cases and denying petitioners' motion for the reconsideration thereof. The Executive Judge
allowed for the inhibition and re-assigned and re-raffled the case.
Claiming impropriety in the assignment of the case, petitioner Parayno assailed before this Court the
order of the Executive Judge. The Court issued a temporary restraining order and promptly remanded the
case to the Court of Appeals for proper disposition.
Is the inhibition proper/allowable?
Petition granted.
Section 1, Rule 137, of the Rules of Court reads:
Sec. 1.
Disqualification of judges. No judge or judicial officer shall sit in any case in which he, or
his wife or child, is pecuniarily interested as heir, legatee, or creditor or otherwise, or in which he is related
to either party within the sixth degree of consanguinity or affinity, or to counsel within the fourth degree,
computed according to the rules of the civil law, or in which he has been executor, administrator, guardian,
trustee or counsel, or in which he has presided in any inferior court when his ruling or decision is the
subject of review, without the written consent of all parties in interest, signed by them and entered upon the

A judge may, in the exercise of his sound discretion, disqualify himself from sitting in a case, for just or
valid reasons other than those mentioned above.
The underlying reason for the above rule is obviously to ensure that a judge, sitting in a case, will at all
times be free from inclinations or prejudices and be well capable to render a just and independent
judgment. A litigant, we often hear, is entitled to nothing less than the cold neutrality of a judge. Due
process requires it. Indeed, he not only must be able to so act without bias but should even appear to so
be. Impartiality is a state of mind; hence, the need for some kind of manifestation of its reality.
Verily, a judge may, in the exercise of his sound discretion, inhibit himself voluntarily from sitting in a
case, but it should be based on good, sound or ethical grounds or for just and valid reasons. It is not
enough that a party throws some tenuous allegations of partiality at the judge. No less than imperative is
that it is the judge's sacred duty to administer justice without fear or favor.
This is a petition for certiorari with a prayer for a writ of preliminary injunction, to annul the order of
April 2, 1975, issued by the respondent Judge Arsenio M. Gonong in Civil Case No. 485-IV of the Court
of First Instance of Ilocos Norte, upon the ground that the said order was issued in violation of Section 1,
Rule 137 of the Revised Rules of Court, the respondent judge being the brother of the private respondent
Isabel G. Judalena.
Palmarin Q. Hurtado filed a motion for the dissolution of the writ of preliminary injunction in order to
preserve the status quo until the designation of another judge to try the case, with a prayer that the
respondent judge hear the motion to give him an opportunity to rectify the mistake error he had
committed in taking cognizance of the case and in granting, ex-parte, the issuance of the writ of
preliminary injunction
Inhibition of Judges from taking cognizance of cases wherein close relatives are involved.

Section 1, Rule 137 of the Revised Rules of Court enumerates without ambiguity the cases in which any
judge or judicial officer is disqualified from acting as such. The said section, in no uncertain terms,
expressly prohibits a judge or judicial officer from sitting in a case where he is related to either party
within the sixth degree of consanguinity or affinity. This is mandatory.
In the case at bar, it is not denied that the respondent judge is the brother of the respondent Isabel G.
Judalena and their close relationship notwithstanding, and despite the prohibition mentioned above, the
respondent judge took cognizance of the case and issued the controversial order directing the issuance of
a writ of preliminary injunction, after which he inhibited himself from sitting on the case for the same
reasons. Such action, to our mind, is reprehensible as it erodes the all important confidence in the
impartiality of the judiciary.
WHEREFORE, the writ prayed for is hereby granted and the order of April 2. 1975, issued in Civil Case
No. 485-IV of the Court of First Instance of Ilocos Norte, is hereby annulled and set aside. The temporary
restraining order heretofore issued is hereby made permanent. With costs against the respondents.
An administrative complaint was filed by Roan I. Libarios for and on behalf of his client Mariano Corvera,
Jr. against respondent Judge Rosarito F. Dabalos, for grave ignorance of the law, grave abuse of
discretion, gross misconduct and partiality, relative to the issuance of a warrant of arrest of the respondent
judge against the accused Tranquilino Calo Jr.and Belarmino Alloco for the crime of murder fixing their
bail without any prior hearing.
W/N Judge Rosarito F. Dabalos violated the New Code of Judicial Conduct.
Yes. A judge should endeavor diligently to ascertain the facts and the applicable law unswayed by
partisan or personal interests, public opinion or fear of criticism. He should not have allowed himself to
be swayed into issuing an order fixing bail for the temporary release of the accused charged with
murder, without a hearing, which is contrary to established principles of law. It has been an established
legal principle or rule that in cases where a person is accused of a capital offense, the trial court must
conduct a hearing in a summary proceeding, to allow the prosecution an opportunity to present, within
a reasonable time, all evidence it may desire to produce to prove that the evidence of guilt against the
accused is strong, before resolving the issue of bail for the temporary release of the accused. A judge
should not only render a just, correct and impartial decision but should do so in a manner as to be free
from any suspicion as to his fairness, impartiality and integrity. The respondent judge is imposed of a
FINE of TWENTY THOUSAND PESOS (P20,000.00) and WARNED to exercise more care and diligence in
the performance of his duties as a judge, and that the same or similar offense in the future will be dealt
with more severally
Albos vs Alaba
Facts:On 27 August 1990, Nimfa Albos filed with the Municipal Trial Court ("MTC") of
Tanauan, Leyte, a complaint for grave oral defamation against one Rebecca
Songalia. Sometime in October, 1990, the complainant, accompanied by her
mother, went to the MTC to verify the status of the case. The two were told by the
Clerk of Court that the complaint was "not yet signed" by the respondent judge.
Forthwith, they went to see the respondent judge himself to inquire about it. The
latter reportedly reacted by throwing the complaint on top of his table and by

exclaiming," (h)ere they are; I am returning them to you anyway, they are useless.
You will lose in your case." chanrobles virtual lawlibrary
The complainant hired a lawyer. The latter filed the complaint against Songalia with,
instead, the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor of Leyte.
On 14 January 1991, the complainant, through counsel, filed a motion asking
respondent Judge Alaba to inhibit himself from trying the case. The
respondent refused to act on the motion and even allegedly challenged the
complainants counsel to a fight. The judge subsequently dismissed the case.
Issue: Is respondent judge guilty of misconduct?
Held: Yes. A judge is bound never to consider lightly a motion for his inhibition that
questions or puts to doubt, however insignificant, his supposed predilection to a
case pending before him. While he must exercise great prudence and utmost
caution in considering and evaluating a challenge to his impartiality, he is expected,
nevertheless, to act with good dispatch. Any delay, let alone an inaction, on his part
can only fuel, whether justified or not, an intensified distrust on his capability to
render dispassionate judgment on the case.chanrobles law library : red
Judges are, and they should be, encouraged to engage in any lawful enterprise that
may help bring about an improved administration of justice. But, be that as it may,
judges must not allow themselves to be thereby distracted from the performance of
their judicial tasks which must remain at all times to be their foremost and
overriding concern.
Lapena vs Marcos
Facts: The complaint alleged that respondents, during their incumbency as members of the Board of
Directors of TARELCO, holding offices of trust, committed acts of dishonesty, breach of trust and gross
misconduct by transacting and attending business board meetings during office hours, receiving
compensation for such attendance, and making it appear that they reported for duty in their respective
offices and for which they also received their salaries. The complaint further alleged that respondents
conspired among themselves as members of the Board and diverted and converted funds of the
cooperative by using the same for payment of their personal accident policies, to the damage and
prejudice of TARELCO and its members. Complainant also alleged that when respondent Marcos ratified
applications for membership of applicants with TARELCO, which act was authorized and tolerated by his
co-respondent as member of the Board, he received the sum of P4,236.00 on March 12, 1977 and P1,500
on March 16, 1977 as ex-oficio notary public in his capacity as a judge, knowing it to be a violation of the
law and the by-laws of the said cooperative. Complainant also averred that respondent likewise defrauded
the TARELCO and its members by various acts which he will prove when this administrative case is
given due course.
Respondent Judge has admitted that he received the sums of P4,236.00 and P1,500.00 on March 12,
1977 and March 16, 1977, respectively, as notarial fees for having ratified applications for membership
with TARELCO in his capacity as notary public ex oficio.
Issue: Is respondent judge guilty?
Held: Yes. The Notarial Law as contained in the Revised Administrative Code, Sections 231 to 252 and
Sections 2632-2633 and the Rules of Court, Rule 141, Sections 6(h) and 9, require that "(o)fficers acting
as notaries public ex oficio shall charge for their services the fees prescribed by law and account therefor
as for Government funds."
Accordingly, respondent Municipal Judge Martonino Marcos is duty-bound to account and turn-over to
the Government the sums of P4,236.00 and P1,500.00 admittedly collected by him as notarial fees on
March 12, 1977 and March 16, 1977, respectively.
Barbarona vs Canda

Facts: Complainants Regino and Conceso Barbarona are brothers. Conceso and complainants father,
Hermogenes Barbarona, were the defendants in a case for quieting of title and damages, docketed as Civil
Case No. 356, in respondent judges court. Gerardo Magallanes, the plaintiff in that case, alleged that he
was the true and lawful owner and possessor of two parcels of land. However, Magallanes alleged he and
his workers were prevented from cutting the bamboo thickets on the parcels of land by complainant
Conceso Barbarona and Hermogenes Barbarona who claimed ownership of the bamboos thickets.
Magallanes therefor prayed that respondent judge declare his titles to the properties clear from any cloud
of doubt and order the Barbaronas to respect his ownership and possession and to pay damages.
The Barbaronas moved for the dismissal of the case on the ground of lack of jurisdiction of the
court. They alleged that they were tenants and that the case involved a landlord-tenant relationship. In
addition, they contended that the case involved a cause of action which was incapable of pecuniary
However, in his order, dated May 16, 1995, respondent judge denied the Barbaronas motion and declared
them in default. The order was based on the fact that the motion to dismiss lacked proof of service and
was thus considered a mere scrap of paper which did not toll the running of the reglementary period to
file an answer.
Issue: Is respondent judge guilty?
Held: We find that respondent judge failed to comply with the requisites under Circular No. 1-90. In his
comment, dated March 2, 1999, respondent judge sought to justify his act by claiming that it was an
isolated [instance] because there was no available notary public at the time in July 9, 1993. However,
even if in truth there was no notary public on July 9, 1993 in the municipality of Liloy, where the Deed of
Absolute Sale was prepared, respondent judge failed to certify this fact in the document itself. Moreover,
respondent judge failed to remit the P18.50 fees he received to the municipal treasurer as required by
Circular No. 1-90. Instead, he remitted the money to the Judiciary Development Fund
Seares vs Salazar
Facts: Dr. Seares is the private complainant in Criminal Cases Nos. 5760 to 5763, for Violation of B.P.
22. Complainant alleges that these cases were submitted for decision on February 14, 1996. Since then
no decision has yet been rendered. Furthermore, respondent disregarded the directive of Senior Deputy
Court Administrator Reynaldo L. Suarez in a note dated august 8, 1996 that the criminal cases be decided
soonest considering the lapse of the 90-day period within which to resolve the same
Another sworn letter complaint dated January 20, 1997 was filed by complainant questioning the
propriety of the action taken by respondent when she set the hearing of the aforecited cases in December
30, 1996 and ordered the accused to present evidence despite the fact that this had long been submitted
for decision. Complainant submits that when respondent ordered the resetting for further hearing of said
cases, she displayed a blatant disregard of the law and the order of higher judicial authority
Issue: Is respondent judge guilty of ignorance of law?
Held: Under Rule 3.01 of Canon 3 of the Code of Judicial Conduct, a judge must be faithful to the law
and maintain professional competence, and Rule 3.05 admonishes all judges to dispose of the courts
business promptly and to decide the case within the period fixed by law. The 90-day period to decide or
resolve the case submitted for decision, fixed no less by the Constitution, is a mandatory
requirement. Hence, non-compliance thereof shall subject the erring judge to administrative sanction as
this Court may deem appropriate. It is only in certain meritorious cases, i.e., those involving difficult
questions of law or complex issue[2] or when the judge is burdened by heavy caseloads,[3] that a longer
period to decide may be allowed but only upon proper application made with the Supreme Court by the
concerned judge.
Hold Departure Order issued by Judge Madronio
Facts: This refers to the indorsement, dated January 15, 1999, of the Secretary of Justice concerning a
"hold-departure" order issued on December 22, 1998 by Acting Judge Aniceto L. Madronio, Jr.,
Municipal Trial Court, Manaoag, Pangasinan, in Criminal Case No. 5275, entitled "People of the

Philippines v. Christopher Castrence," which is for forcible abduction with rape and homicide. The
Secretary of Justice calls attention to the fact that the order in question is contrary to Circular No. 39-97,
dated June 19, 1997, of this Court.
Issue: Is respondent judge guilty?
Held: Yes. In his comment, Judge Madronio admits his mistake, stating that he signed the hold departure
order through oversight and pleading for leniency in view of his cardiac illness which required surgery
and his assignment to three salas in addition to the Municipal Trial Court in Manaoag.
In several recent cases involving similar violations, this Court imposed the penalty of reprimand on the
offending judges. Indeed, this is not the first time that a complaint for violation of Circular No. 39-97 has
been filed against Judge Madronio. In our Resolution, dated August 17, 1999 in Administrative Matter
No. 99-7-105-MTC, Judge Madronio was found guilty of a similar violation of Circular No. 39-97 and
reprimanded with warning that a repetition of the same or similar act would be dealt with more severely.
His illness, additional assignments, and the fact that he issued the second hold departure order in violation
of Circular No. 39-97 prior to the release of our Resolution cannot excuse him. However, considering that
the act complained of in this case was committed on December 22, 1998, before the decision in his
previous case, the Court agrees with the recommendation of the Court Administrator that as in the
previous case, Judge Madronio be simply reprimanded.
Loyola vs Gabo
Facts: respondent Judge Basilio R. Gabo, Jr. stands charged with a violation of Section 3 (e), R.A.

3019, for issuing an unjust interlocutory order, and with gross ignorance of the law. According to
the complainant the respondent judge directed that accused SPO2 German be held in the custody
of his immediate superior, the Chief of Police of Sta. Maria, Bulacan, an order sans any legal and
factual basis, instead of ordering the arrest of the said accused being indicted for murder, a
heinous and non-bailable crime. Thereafter, respondent judge denied the motion for
reconsideration interposed by the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for the Military.
Issue: Is respondent judge guilty of gross ignorance of law?
Held: Yes. The prosecution must first be accorded an opportunity to present evidence because by
the very nature of deciding applications for bail, it is on the basis of such evidence that judicial
discretion is exercised in determining whether the evidence of guilt of the accused is strong. In
other words, discretion must be exercised regularly, legally and within the confines of procedural
due process, that is, after evaluation of the evidence submitted by the prosecution. Any order
issued in the absence thereof is not a product of sound judicial discretion but of whim and
caprice and outright arbitrariness. Granting bail in non-bailable offenses without hearing is
gross ignorance of the law.[11] Misspped
That the prosecutor interposed no objection to the release of the accused to the custody of the
petitioner Chief of Police, on the ground that from the records of the case, accused's "indictment
was based on circumstantial evidence," did not and should not excuse respondent judge from his
judicial duty to conduct a summary proceeding to determine the strength of evidence against the
accused, as to entitle him to post bail. What is more, as the Information itself categorically states
that no bail is recommended for accused,[12] the respondent judge should have been alerted to
conduct a summary hearing. Spped
Thus, the doctrine of res ipsa loquitor, i.e., that the Court may impose its authority upon erring
judges whose actuations, on their face, would show gross incompetence, ignorance of the law, or
misconduct, is obviously applicable in the instant case.[13]
Lim vs Dumlao

Facts: Complainant averred that she filed two criminal cases for carnapping and theft with the Regional
Trial Court of Santiago City, Isabela, Branch 35, against a certain Herman A. Medina. On May 8, 2003,
Medina was apprehended and detained at the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, Santiago City
Jail, by virtue of a Warrant of Arrest issued by then Presiding Judge Fe Albano Madrid of Branch 35.
On May 9, 2003, respondent judge issued three separate orders for the release of Medina on the ground
that he had posted bail with his court. Complainant alleged that respondent judge frequently approves
bail bonds for cases filed in other courts and outside the territorial jurisdiction of his court. He also issues
search warrants for implementation outside of his courts jurisdiction which, resultantly, are often
quashed and the corresponding cases dismissed because the articles seized were inadmissible as evidence.
Issue: Is respondent judge guily of gross ignorance of law?
Held: In this case, respondent judge appears undeterred in disregarding the law. He has
continued to exhibit such behavior that betray an unconcerned stance about the previous
penalties he has received and the warnings previously given that any repetition of similar
infractions shall be dealt with more severely. Thus, we are imposing a penalty more severe
than a fine. Given the circumstances, suspension from office for six (6) months without salary
and benefits is reasonable.
Bentulan vs Dumatol
Facts: On 1 August 1991, Atty. Cynthia Madamba, Clerk of Court of the respondents court, informed the
complainant that he had already finished writing the decision but that it was with the respondent for
approval and signing.
Complainant further avers that in August 1991, he again inquired about the decision and the respondent
personally informed him that he would resolve the case the following month since he would have to give
priority first to cases involving prisoners. On account of the actuations of the respondent, the complainant
sought assistance from the Office of the Court Administrator. On 28 October 1991, Atty. Andrew
Inocencio of the said Office told the complainant that the respondent would inform the Office about the
case on the last day of October. But since by November the said Office had not received any call from the
respondent, the complainant went to the sala of the respondent on 25 November 1991. He was assured by
Atty. Madamba that the decision would be released on 15 December 1991. On 16 December 1991, the
respondent again assured the complainant that the decision would be released before the end of the year.
The respondent explained that since he heard only the last part of the case, he still needed time to study
the case records. On 27 December 1991, the respondent again assured him that the decision would be
released after New Year.
Issue: Is respondent judge guilty for neglect of duty?
Held: Yes. In the present case, respondent Judge simply lacks the eagerness and zeal
to decide the subject case. The case was submitted for decision on September 1989
and the draft of the decision was prepared only in November 1991. Worst, the draft
was among those gutted by the fire which occurred in January 1992.
Had the respondent Judge been more dedicated in his work, the case would have
been resolved way before the fire. There would have been no need for
reconstitution. Had the respondent Judge been more mindful that justice delayed is
justice denied, the case would not have dragged up to this date."crala
162 Office of the Court Administrator v. Madronio (2005)
Facts: The instant case stemmed from an inventory report which showed that 80 cases have not been
acted upon by retired Judge Madronio. He admitted to not having decided, resolved or acted upon the
mentioned cases on time. He explained that his failure to act was caused by his cardiac ailment and so
much volume of cases.
Issue: WON Judge Madronio is liable for gross inefficiency.
Held: YES. The Constitution mandates all lower courts to decide or resolve cases or matters within 3
months from their date of submission. Accordingly, Rule 3.05, Canon 3 of the Code of Judicial Conduct
w vi rtua 1aw lib rary

directs judges to "dispose of the court's business promptly and decide cases within the required
periods." But this rule is not that severe. If a judge finds himself unable to comply with this 90-day
requirement for deciding cases or matters, he can, for good reasons, ask for an extension and such request
is generally granted. Thus, we have consistently held that notwithstanding the valid reasons that a judge
may have for such delay -- poor health, age, heavy caseload, among others -- these do not totally absolve
him from liability. At most, they only serve to mitigate the penalty. Judge Madronio is thus liable for
gross inefficiency and ordered to pay a fine of P20,000.
163 Columbres v. Madronio (2005)
Facts: Lucille Columbres filed a complaint for forcible entry against herein petitioner Ma. Teresa
Columbres (her stepdaughter). 12 days after the complaint was filed, Lucille filed a motion for a writ of
preliminary mandatory injunction. Opposed by petitioner, Lucille again filed an ex-parte and urgent
motion for the issuance of the writ. Without conducting a hearing within the time prescribed by law,
Judge Madronio granted the motion based merely on the allegations in the application and opposition. No
opportunity was given both parties to be heard and to introduce evidence on the propriety for the issuance
of the injunctive writ. In addition, Judge Madronio ordered petitioner to turn over her Volkswagen car to
Lucille. Petitoner filed a motion to lift the writ of preliminary injunction, but Judge Madronio did not act
on the same.
Issue: WON Judge Madronio committed grave abuse of discretion and is administratively liable.
Held: YES. The Rules of Court expressly prohibit the grant of preliminary injunction without hearing and
prior notice to the party or person sought to be enjoined. Moreover, recovery of possession of personal
property (Volkswagen) is misplaced in a forcible entry case. Judges should not be disciplined on account
merely of occasional mistakes or errors of judgment. However, it is equally imperative that they should be
conversant with basic rules in order to merit the confidence of the citizenry. In the present
case, respondent judges disregard of the basic rules of procedure and his failure to abide by them
constitute an offense of grave abuse of authority and conduct prejudicial to the proper administration of
justice. Lastly, this Court has constantly impressed upon judges the need to decide cases promptly and
expeditiously, for it cannot be gainsaid that justice delayed is justice denied. Delay in the disposition of
cases undermines the peoples faith and confidence in the judiciary. Hence, judges are enjoined to decide
cases with dispatch. Their failure to do so constitutes gross inefficiency and warrants the imposition of
administrative sanction on them.
164 Santos v. Silva (2001)
Facts: Judge Silva issued a writ of demolition. The acting clerk of court, however, inadvertently included
the words third parties in the Demolition Order, thus causing the demolition of properties outside the
scope of the writ. These properties were owned by herein petitioners. Judge Silva, in his defense, stated
that the Demolition Order he issued was directed only against the defendants therein. He further alleged
that he did not authorize the clerk of court to expand the writ, and that when he discovered the error, he
issued an alias writ which superseded the previous one.
Issue: WON Judge Silva is administratively liable.
Held: YES. Verily, the preparation of a writ of execution is the duty of the clerk of court. But it should be
stressed that the performance of such duty is under the supervision and control of the judge, who is
responsible for proper and efficient court management. The judge should have exercised greater
supervision, considering that the person who prepared the expanded Writ was merely an acting clerk of
court. The judge cannot evade the clear mandate of Canon 3 of the Code of Judicial Conduct, which
states: "A judge should organize and supervise the Court personnel to ensure the prompt and efficient
dispatch of business, and require at all times the observance of high standards of public service and
165 Impao v. Makilala (1989)
Facts: Judge Makilala (MTC of Maguindanao) was charged with gross misconduct, falsification, abuse of
authority and neglect and irregularity in the performance of duties. Complainants alleged the following:
(a) Makilala would hold office in his residence and would always appear in sleeveless shirt and slippers
while the party-litigants and their counsels were in business attire; (b) he filled up his daily time record as

if he rendered full service when in fact he was always absent because of his illness and when he was not
absent, he only stayed in court for a short period; (c) he unduly favored 2 court personnel; (d) he found
pleasure in scolding them in front of other people, uttering insulting words like "mga baboy kayong mga
Kristiyano, and telling soldiers to rape his female staff; (e) he punched and threatened to kill a court aide
for not delivering the nipa for his roof; and (f) he accepted a bribe.
Issue: WON Judge Makilala is guilty of serious misconduct and abuse of authority.
Held: YES. It is an important judicial norm that a judge's private as well as official conduct must at all
times be free from the appearance of impropriety. The judge is the visible representation of the law and,
more importantly, of justice. From him, the people draw their will and awareness to obey the law. They
see in him an intermediary of justice between two conflicting interests, specially in the station of
municipal judges, like respondent Judge, who have that close and direct contact with the people before
anybody else in the judiciary. Thus, for the judge to return that regard, he must be the first to abide by the
law and weave an example for the others to follow. The Court is not unmindful of the fact that Judge
Makilala is suffering from a lingering illness known as polycythemia vera, which requires that his blood
be drained periodically. However, the seriousness of respondent's illness cannot justify his failure to
perform his duties nor does it excuse him from the consequences of his misconduct and abuse of authority.
If indeed respondent found it difficult to discharge the functions of a municipal judge, then he should
have retired voluntarily instead of clinging to his office at the expense of the litigants, his staff and the
general public. Considering the number and the serious nature of offenses committed by respondent judge,
the Court believes that the penalty of dismissal with forfeiture of retirement benefits should be imposed
upon him.
166 In Re: Impeachment of Flordeliza (1923)
Facts: Complainants allege, among others, that Judge Flordeliza is guilty of delay and lack of diligence in
the disposition of the cases pending before him, in violation of Sec. 129 of the Administrative Code.
Judge Flordeliza counters that the time taken by stenographers in transcribing their notes should not be
counted in the computation of the 90-day period in deciding cases. He also contends that the vacation
period should be excluded, and that the period should begin to run from the date the clerk reported the
case for decision.
Issue: WON Judge Flordelizas interpretation of the 90-day period is correct.
Held: NO. The meaning given by Judge Flordeliza would result in qualifying the law where no such
qualifications were intended. The vacation months should not be excluded, and the time should begin to
run from the submission of the case, without awaiting notification from the clerk of court. As to the time
taken by a stenographer to transcribe his notes, conceivably special circumstances may arise; when they
do the judge should so state. Congested conditions of court dockets is deplorable and intolerable. It can
have no other result than the loss of evidence, the abandonment of cases, and the denial and frequent
defeat of justice. It lowers the standards of the courts, and brings them into disrepute. The judge must
cultivate a capacity for quick decision. Habits of indecision must be sedulously overcome. He must not
deny by slothfulness of mind or body the judgment to which a party is entitled.
167 Re: Report of Acting Presiding Judge Herico on Missing Cash Bonds (2005)
Facts: Judge Alba applied for optional retirement and Judge Herico was appointed in his stead. Judge
Herico informed the OCA that there were missing cash bonds in two pending criminal cases. An
administrative case was then filed against Judge Alba. Judge Alba sought the dismissal of the case against
him, and argued that he had nothing to do with the missing cash bonds. He also pointed out that Isabel
Liwag (his former clerk of court) should be made liable as she was the one authorized to collect, receive,
and issue official receipts for cash bonds, trust funds, and other payments made by party-litigants.
Issue: WON Judge Alba is guilty of gross negligence and inefficiency.
Held: YES. The rule is that clerks of court are custodians of all bail bonds, rental deposits and other
fiduciary collections. Judges have nothing to do with the collections, hence they cannot be directly faulted
if these funds are not immediately deposited. HOWEVER, when Liwag resigned, Judge Alba wrote a
letter clearing her from all accountabilities. Judge Alba should thus be made to assume the responsibility
of restituting the shortages incurred by her. He should have taken the necessary steps to ensure that the

correct procedure in the collections and deposits of court funds were dutifully carried out before he retired.
Further, he should have prepared an inventory of the cases, both active and archived, for an effective
docket control. In so doing, Judge Alba would have discovered the missing cash bonds. This serves as a
reminder to Judges. For the orderly administration of justice, trial court Judges are bound to keep a record
of the proceedings in their respective courts to ensure the proper, systematic, and efficient management of
their court dockets. In this regard, circulars of this Court shall be strictly complied with to protect the
safekeeping of funds and collections and to establish full accountability of government funds.
168 Report on the Judicial Audit Conducted at the Municipal Trial Court in Cities (2005)
Facts: As a result of the judicial audit made on Judge Alaan, the OCA found pending cases that were
already beyond the 90-day reglementary period. Also, there was failure, for a considerable length of time,
to take appropriate action on 235 cases or about 49% of the cases pending at the time of the audit. Judge
Alaan argued that he had a heavy case load and was handling over two other courts.
Issue: WON Judge Alaan is administratively liable.
Held: NO. As a rule, the mere fact that a case load is heavy cannot absolve erring judges from charges of
inefficiency. They must request extensions of time within which to decide the delayed cases and matters.
This Court normally grants additional periods, once meritorious reasons are given. However, requests for
extension can be implied when the OCA is informed in writing of a judges heavy case load. This
principle especially holds true when there are other extenuating circumstances showing sufficient
justifications for the failure to resolve cases on time. IN THIS CASE, Judge Alaan had an extra-heavy
burden. Aside from his regular duty as judge of the MCTC of Tubog-Alegria, he was also assigned to
preside over the MTCC of Surigao City and the MTC of Mainit, Surigao del Norte. Moreover, he tried
other cases in the MCTC of San Francisco-Malimono and Taganaan-Sison, from which the presiding
judges had inhibited themselves. These circumstances justify his failure to act immediately on pending
169. In Re: Climaco
Facts: Hon. Rafael Climaco made a secret ocular inspection without anybody to guide him, visited the
places which he thought erroneously were the scene of the robbery where the Chief of Police was killed
by the Montemayor gang It was inferred from the secret ocular that is the hub of a large fishing industry
operating in the Visayas; that the said compound is only about 500 meters away from the Police Station
and the City Hall in Cadiz; and that the neighborhood is well-lighted and well-populated. Such
circumstances was the basis of the acquittal of Carlos Caramonte as the witnesses was unable to affirm
the guilt of the accused.
Fiscal Zulueta question the effect that prosecution cannot appeal from the judgment of acquittal in view of
the constitutional protection against double jeopardy, and made the observation that "While the validity of
the ocular inspection conducted by the lower court is open to doubt, the unvarnished fact remains that the
judgment of acquittal was not premised solely on the results of said ocular inspection, as erroneously
contended by prosecutor.
Issue: is the secret ocular inspection made by judge Climaco valid and is it a ground for any
administrative action?
Held: No. To hold a judge liable for the rendition of a manifestly unjust judgment by reason of
inexcusable negligence or ignorance, it must be shown, according to Groizard, that although he has acted
without malice, he failed to observe in the performance of his duty, that diligence, prudence and care
which the law is entitled to exact in the rendering of any public service.
The SC found that the decision made by Climaco contains clearly and distinctly facts and law on which it
is based. The SC cannot conclude on the basis provided that respondent has knowingly rendered an unjust
judgment, much less could it be held that respondent in the performance of his duty has failed to observe
the diligence, prudence and care required by law.
170. In Re: Echiverri
Facts: An undated anonymous letter signed "Ang Bagong Filipino" initiated an administrative proceeding
against Hon. Judge Juan Echiverri who at the time of the sending of said letter was a presiding judge in
Bulacan. Although as a rule anonymous complaints are not entertained, nevertheless, considering that

among the matters complained of was that Judge Echiverri does not hold sessions on Wednesdays and
that there is a backlog of cases in his sala, the Court directed its Judicial Consultant, Justice Manuel P.
Barcelona, to conduct an investigation of the records of Branch IV.
Judge Echiverri claims that the clogged dockets and pressure of work demand overtime work just as his
physical condition and other judicial duties make imperative a mid-week pause, Wednesday. o ease the
clogged dockets, or at least to ameliorate the situation, occasioned by the foregoing facts and difficulties,
undersigned adopted a rigorous program of hearings and other judicial work from Mondays to Saturdays,
mornings and afternoons, sometimes until late in the afternoon or early evening, even during the fuel
Issue: Is the mid-week pause a valid cause of action againt Judge Echeverri?
Held: Yes. Judges are duty bound to comply with the above to insure the maximum efficiency of the trial
courts for a speedy administration of justice. Daily trials at a minimum of five hours per working day of
the week will enable the judge to calendar as many cases as possible and to dispose with regular dispatch
the increasing number of litigations pending with the court. All other matters needing the attention of the
judge are to be attended to outside of this five-hour schedule of trial. The law regulating court sessions
does not permit any "mid-week pause."
171. Morada v Judge Tayao
Facts: The Ad Hoc Committee had invited Judge Tayao twice to appear before it for some clarificatory
questions, but since he was ill and "in a state of shock," the Committee had to forego the interview. The
Ad Hoc Committee had referred to the "Laciste Report" which alleged that Judge Tayao had granted bail
to a criminal case involving the violation of of RA 6425, which was a non-bailable offense.
Judge Tayao claims that it is a well-settled rule is that the determination of whether or not the evidence of
guilt is strong for purposes of resolving an application for bail of a person accused of a "non-bailable"
offense, is a matter of judicial discretion. A judge must be allowed a reasonable latitude for the operation
of his own individual view of the case, his appreciation of the facts, and his understanding of the
applicable law on the matter.
Issue: Is Judge Tayao guilty of misconduct in office for his alleged erroneous decision, enabling a cause
of action against him?
Held: No. If Judge Tayao committed any error at all, it was an error of judgment and it is important to
recall the firmly established principle that a judge may not be administratively charged for mere errors of
judgment, in the absence of a showing of any bad faith, malice or corrupt purpose. A judge cannot be held
to account or answer, criminally, civilly, or administratively, for an erroneous decision rendered by him in
good faith. Mere errors in the appreciation of such evidence, unless so gross and patent as to produce an
inference of ignorance or bad faith, or that the Judge knowingly rendered an unjust decision, are irrelevant
and immaterial in an administrative proceeding against him. In this case, record reveals no prima facie
basis for charging Judge Tayao with misconduct in office or other administrative offense.
172. State Prosecutors v. Judge Muro
Facts: Judge Muro was charged by State Prosecutors Mariano, Dee and Tac-an for his decision of
dismissing 11 cases involving Mrs. Imelda Marcos, for Violation of Central Bank Foreign Exchange
Restrictions. It was alleged that Judge Muro. ssued his Order solely on the basis of newspaper concerning
the announcement by the President of the Philippines of the lifting by the government of all foreign
exchange restrictions and the arrival at such decision by the Monetary Board as per statement of Central
Bank Governor Jose Cuisia which was later corrected. Judge Muro claims that that having acted only on
the basis of such announcement, he cannot be blamed for relying on the erroneous statement of the
President that the new foreign exchange rules rendered moot and academic the cases filed against Mrs.
Issue: Is Judge Muro administratively liable for gross ignorance of the law?
Held: Yes. To hold a judge liable for rendering a manifestly unjust order through inexcusable negligence
or ignorance, it must be clearly shown that although he has acted without malice, he failed to observe in
the performance of his duty that diligence, prudence and care which the law is entitled to exact in the
rendering of any public service. Judge Moro utterly failed to show any legal, factual, or even equitable

justification for the dismissal of the eleven criminal cases. The explanation given is no explanation at all.
The strained and fallacious submissions therein do not speak well of respondent and cannot but further
depreciate his probity as a judge. The Court found him guilty of gross ignorance of the law, his error of
judgment being almost deliberate and tantamount to knowingly rendering an incorrect and unjust
173. De La Cruz v. Judge Concepcion
Facts: Judge Crisanto C. Concepcion, is administratively indicted for gross ignorance of the law and
knowingly rendering an unjust judgment for acquitting the accused who was charged before his court
with acts of lasciviousness. It was alleged that Judge Concepcion held that the girls consented, without
any force employed upon them, to strip themselves from waist down although with understandable
reluctance because of their desire to be in the team considering that according to MEC Regional
Memorandum, as failure to submit to physical examination would automatically disqualify a candidate
from the volleyball team. As there was an absence of lewd design, respondent Judge acquitted the accused.
Issue: Is Judge Concepcion guilty of gross ignorance of the law?
Held: Yes. Ordinarily, the act of a man in touching and stroking the private parts of a woman is, by itself,
lewd for no hand of a man would wander or venture near her manzanas prohibidas if not for a lascivious
motivation. But even if the accused stroked and touched the girls on their montes veneris, respondent
nevertheless absolved the accused of criminal liability on the theory that the complained acts may no
longer be considered lascivious in view of the directives and implementing rules. It was reiterated that
"mere errors in the appreciation of evidence, unless so gross and patent as to produce an inference of
ignorance or bad faith, or that the judge knowingly rendered an unjust decision, are irrelevant and
immaterial in an administrative proceeding against him.
174. Maceda v. Conrado Vasquez
Facts: Napoleon A. Abiera of the Public Attorney's Office alleged that Judge Maceda had falsified his
Certificate of Service, by certifying "that all civil and criminal cases which have been submitted for
decision or determination for a period of 90 days have been determined and decided on or before January
31, 1998," when in truth and in fact, petitioner knew that no decision had been rendered in five (5) civil
and ten (10) criminal cases that have been submitted for decision. in his answer, Judge Maceda claims
that he was granted an extension of 90 days to decide upon the said cases. He also claims that the
Ombudsman has no jurisdiction over said case since the offense charged arose from the judge's
performance of his official duties, which is under the control and supervision of the Supreme Court.
Furthermore, the investigation of the Ombudsman constitutes an encroachment into the Supreme Court's
constitutional duty of supervision over all inferior courts.
Issue: Was it proper for the Ombudsman to investigate Judge Maceda?
Held: No. The SC agree with petitioner that in the absence of any administrative action taken against him
by this Court with regard to his certificates of service, the investigation being conducted by the
Ombudsman encroaches into the Court's power of administrative supervision over all courts and its
personnel, in violation of the doctrine of separation of powers. The Ombudsman cannot justify its
investigation of petitioner on the powers granted to it by the Constitution, 3 for such a justification not
only runs counter to the specific mandate of the Constitution granting supervisory powers to the Supreme
Court over all courts and their personnel, but likewise undermines the independence of the
judiciary. Where a criminal complaint against a Judge or other court employee arises from their
administrative duties, the Ombudsman must defer action on said complaint and refer the same to this
Court for determination whether said Judge or court employee had acted within the scope of their
administrative duties.
175. In Re: Climaco
Facts: Hon. Rafael Climaco made a secret ocular inspection without anybody to guide him, visited the
places which he thought erroneously were the scene of the robbery where the Chief of Police was killed
by the Montemayor gang It was inferred from the secret ocular that is the hub of a large fishing industry
operating in the Visayas; that the said compound is only about 500 meters away from the Police Station
and the City Hall in Cadiz; and that the neighborhood is well-lighted and well-populated. Such

circumstances was the basis of the acquittal of Carlos Caramonte as the witnesses was unable to affirm
the guilt of the accused.
Fiscal Zulueta question the effect that prosecution cannot appeal from the judgment of acquittal in view
of the constitutional protection against double jeopardy, and made the observation that "While the validity
of the ocular inspection conducted by the lower court is open to doubt, the unvarnished fact remains that
the judgment of acquittal was not premised solely on the results of said ocular inspection, as erroneously
contended by prosecutor.
Issue: is the secret ocular inspection made by judge Climaco valid and is it a ground for any
administrative action?
Held: No. To hold a judge liable for the rendition of a manifestly unjust judgment by reason of
inexcusable negligence or ignorance, it must be shown, according to Groizard, that although he has acted
without malice, he failed to observe in the performance of his duty, that diligence, prudence and care
which the law is entitled to exact in the rendering of any public service.
The SC found that the decision made by Climaco contains clearly and distinctly facts and law on which it
is based. The SC cannot conclude on the basis provided that respondent has knowingly rendered an unjust
judgment, much less could it be held that respondent in the performance of his duty has failed to observe
the diligence, prudence and care required by law.