CASE DIGEST: AER vs. Progresibong Unyon

G.R. No. 160138 : January 16, 2013

AUTOMOTIVE ENGINE REBUILDERS, INC. (AER), ANTONIO T. INDUCIL, LOURDES T. INDUCIL, JOCELYN T. INDUCIL and MA. CONCEPCION I. DONATO, Petitioners, v. PROGRESIBONG UNYON NG MGA MANGGAGAWA SA AER, ARNOLD VILLOTA, FELINO E. AGUSTIN, RUPERTO M. MARIANO II, EDUARDO S. BRIZUELA, ARNOLD S. RODRIGUEZ, RODOLFO MAINIT, JR., FROILAN B. MADAMBA, DANILO D. QUIBOY, CHRISTOPHER R. NOLASCO, ROGER V. BELATCHA, CLEOFAS B. DELA BUENA, JR., HERMINIO P. PAPA, WILLIAM A. RITUAL, ROBERTO CALDEO, RAFAEL GACAD, JAMES C. CAAMPUED, ESPERIDION V. LOPEZ, JR., FRISCO M. LORENZO, JR., CRISANTO LUMBAO, JR., and RENATO SARABUNO, Respondents.

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G.R. No. 160192 : January 16, 2013

BRIZUELA, ARNOLD S. RODRIGUEZ, RODOLFO MAINIT, JR., FROILAN B. MADAMBA, DANILO D. QUIBOY, CHRISTOPHER R. NOLASCO, ROGER V. BELATCHA, CLEOFAS B. DELA BUENA, JR., HERMINIO P. PAPA, WILLIAM A. RITUAL, ROBERTO CALDEO, RAFAEL GACAD, JAMES C. CAAMPUED, ESPERIDION V. LOPEZ, JR., FRISCO M. LORENZO, JR., CRISANTO LUMBAO, JR., and RENA TO SARABUNO, Petitioners, v. AUTOMOTIVE ENGINE REBUILDERS, INC., and ANTONIO T. INDUCIL,Respondents.

MENDOZA, J.:


FACTS:

This is a resolution to the Partial Motion for Reconsideration filed by Progresibong Unyon ng Manggagawa sa AER (Unyon).

In G.R. No. 160138, Automotive Engine Rebuilders, Inc. (AER) filed a complaint against Unyon and its eighteen (18) members for illegal strike.

In G.R. No. 160192, Unyon, together with its thirty-two (32) members filed a complaint against AER alleging that AER is guilty of Unfair Labor Practices, Illegal Dismissal, Illegal Suspension, and Run-away shop. Unyon prayed for reinstatement of its members with full payment of backwages.

The Labor Arbiter rendered a decision in favor of Unyon and directed AER to reinstate the concerned employees but without backwages. Both parties appealed to the NLRC.

The NLRC reversed the Labor Arbiters decision and ruled that the strike conducted by Unyon was illegal and therefore the employees should not be reinstated. Unyon filed a motion for reconsideration. The NLRC denied the motion.

Unyon appealed to the Court of Appeals. The CA ordered the reinstatement of the employees but without backwages.

Aggrieved, both parties filed the present consolidated petitions. Unyon argued that the CA erred in not awarding backwages. AER, on the other hand, argued that the CA erred in ordering the reinstatement of the employees.

The Supreme Court rendered its decision denying the petition. It maintained the CAs decision of reinstatement without backwages. Hence, Unyon filed the subject Motion for Partial Reconsideration.

ISSUE: Whether or not the employees are entitled to reinstatement with payment of full backwages?

HELD: After going over the records again, the Court holds that only nine (9) of the fourteen (14) excluded employees deserve to be reinstated immediately with backwages.

LABOR LAW: reinstatement, backwages


Records disclose that thirty-two (32) employees filed a complaint for illegal suspension and unfair labor practice against AER. Out of these 32 workers, only eighteen (18) of them were charged by AER with illegal strike leaving fourteen (14) of them excluded from its complaint. Technically, as no charges for illegal strike were filed against these 14 employees, they cannot be among those found guilty of illegal strike. Therefore, they should be reinstated and given their backwages.

Out of these 14 employees, however, five (5) failed to write their names and affix their signatures in the Membership Resolution attached to the petition filed before the CA, authorizing Union President Arnold Villota to represent them. Because of their failure to affix their names and signatures in the Membership Resolution, only nine (9) employees who signed their names can be granted the relief prayed for.

These excluded nine (9) workers, who signed their names in their petition before the CA, deserve to be reinstated immediately and granted backwages. It is basic in jurisprudence that illegally dismissed workers are entitled to reinstatement with backwages plus interest at the legal rate.

MOTION OF PARTIAL RECONSIDERATION, GRANTED.

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