Illegal dismissal v. Constructive dismissal

Resignation is the formal pronouncement or relinquishment of a position or office. It is the voluntary act of an employee who is in a situation where he believes that personal reasons cannot be sacrificed in favor of the exigency of the service, and he has then no other choice but to disassociate himself from employment. The intent to relinquish must concur with the overt act of relinquishment. In illegal dismissal cases, it is a fundamental rule that when an employer interposes the defense of resignation, on him necessarily rests the burden to prove that the employee indeed voluntarily resigned.[1]In contrast, constructive dismissal exists where there is cessation of work because continued employment is rendered impossible, unreasonable or unlikely, as an offer involving a demotion in rank or a diminution in pay and other benefits. Aptly called a dismissal in disguise or an act amounting to dismissal but made to appear as if it were not, constructive dismissal may, likewise, exist if an act of clear discrimination, insensibility, or disdain by an employer becomes so unbearable on the part of the employee that it could foreclose any choice by him except to forego his continued employment.[2] It must be noted, however, that bare allegations of constructive dismissal, when uncorroborated by the evidence on record, cannot be given credence.[3]

[1] See Mendoza v. HMS Credit Corporation, G.R. No. 187232, April 17, 2013, 696 SCRA 794, 805, citing San Miguel Properties Philippines, Inc. v. Gucaban, 669 Phil. 288, 297 (2011).

[2] Morales v. Harbour Centre Port Terminal, Inc., G.R. No. 174208, January 25, 2012, 664 SCRA 110, 117-118; citations omitted.

[3] Hechanova Bugay Vilchez Lawyers v. Matorre, G.R. No. 198261, October 16, 2013, 707 SCRA 570, 580, citing Vicente v. CA, 557 Phil. 777, 787 (2007).

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