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RA 3936: UNCLAIMED BALANCES LAW

ELEMENTS OF UNCLAIMED BALANCES: 1) Include credits or deposits of: a. money b. bullion c. security, or d. other evidence of indebtedness 2) The credit or deposit must be with the bank, building and loan association, or trust corporation, and 3) The credit or deposit is in favor of a person: a. known to be dead, or b. who has not made further deposits or withdrawals during the preceding 10 years or more. such unclaimed balances, together with the increase and proceeds thereof, shall be deposited with the Treasurer of the Philippines to the credit of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines, and to be used as the National Assembly may direct after following the reclassification and procedures provided by law. NOTE: Demand drafts cannot be escheated, but TELEGRAPHIC NOTES can be escheated. LEGAL CONSEQUENCE: the unclaimed balances may be subject of ESCHEAT PROCEEDINGS, after proper publication and the depositors still do not lay claim to them. JURISPRUDENCE RP vs CA FACTS: The Republic of the Philippines filed a complaint for escheat against several banks. The respective managers of the banks submitted to the Treasurer of the RP separate statements prepared under oath which listed all deposits and credits held by them in favor of depositors or creditors either known to be dead, have not been heard from, or have not made deposits or withdrawals for ten years or more. RP prayed that the publication of the list of the unclaimed balances be dispensed with. It asserted that the only requirement under the UBL is the publication of summons and notice to all persons, and that to publish the

names and list of unclaimed balances would only result in additional and unnecessary expenses to the government. ISSUE: Whether or not the publication of the names and list of unclaimed balances is necessary. HELD: YES. The publication of the list of unclaimed balances is intended to safeguard the right of the depositors, their heirs and successors to due process. How would other persons who may have interest in any of the unclaimed balances know what this case is all about and whether they have an interest in this case if the amended complaint and the said list are not published? Such other persons may be heirs of the bank depositors named in the list. The fact that the government is in a tight financial situation is not a justification for the Court to dispense with the elementary rule of due process.

AYN RUTH NOTES