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DLSU College of Law

STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION
Vyva Victoria M. Aguirre, M.L.S., LL.M.
1st Semester 2019

Method of Instruction: Lecture and Recitations. Students are expected to read the assigned
cases and the relevant chapters in the textbook. While students may volunteer for recitations,
the instructor reserves the right to call on anyone. The student who recites may be allowed to
glance (but not to read) at handwritten notes to refresh his/her memory, but may not use
gadgets or photocopied materials for this purpose.
Requirements/Breakdown of Grades: (No make-up for quizzes. Make-up for Mid-Term and
Finals only for absence with valid reason, evidence of which must be presented.)
Recitations/Quizzes, etc.: 30%
Mid-Term Exam: 35%
Final Exam: 35%
Attendance: A 5-pt incentive will be added to the student’s class attendance for perfect
attendance. This incentive will diminish according to the number of absences. On the other
hand, points will be deducted from the student’s total score for every absence beyond five.
Further, justifiable absences will only be considered for students who have less than three
absences. Students are also expected to come to class on time (traffic both in the roads and
in the elevators may not be used as excuse for tardiness). Those who come after attendance
had been called shall be marked absent. Students who go out of the classroom during class
sessions and stay out for an unreasonable period of time as may be determined by the
professor, shall likewise be marked absent.
Decorum: Students are expected to listen not only to the lectures but also to recitations. They
are allowed to engage in relevant and non-distracting conversations during class; however,
they risk being called to recite or to explain what the conversation was about.
Students are also not allowed to use gadgets (laptops, netbooks, tablets, smartphones, etc.) in
class. Cell phones must be turned off or switched to silent mode before entering the
classroom.
Academic honesty: Violations of academic honesty, such as plagiarism, cheating, and
fabrication will merit a failing grade for the course, without prejudice to the filing of disciplinary
charges depending on the gravity of the offense.

COURSE OUTLINE
Introduction
I. Validity, effect and operation of statutes:
II. Nature and purpose of construction
III. Power to construe and its limitations
Construction and Interpretation of Statutes
IV. Presumption of validity - Morfe v. Mutuc, G.R. No. L-20387, January 31, 1968; Salas v.
Jarencio, G.R. No. L-29788. August 30, 1972; Integrated Bar of the Philippines v. Zamora,
G.R. No. 141284. August 15, 2000; Estrada v. Sandiganbayan, GR 148560, Nov 19, 2001;
Tatad v. Secretary of the Department of Energy, G.R. No. 124360. November 5, 1997
V. Power to construe laws and its limitations – Endencia v. David, G.R. No. L-6355-56,
August 31, 1953; Angara v. Electoral Commission, G.R. No. 45081. July 15, 1936
VI. Aids to construction: Intrinsic Aids - Ebarle v. Sucaldito, G.R. No. L-33628. December 29,
1987
Parts of a statute – Commissioner of Customs v. Relunia, G.R. No. L-11860, May 29, 1959;
Municipality of Nueva Era v. Municipality of Marcos, G.R. No. 169435, Feb. 27, 2008;
People v. Purisima, G.R. No. L-42050, Nov. 20, 1978; Commissioner of Internal Revenue v.
TMX Sales, G.R. No. 83736, January 15, 1992; In re Johnson, G.R. No. 12767, Nov. 16, 1918;
Aquino III v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 189793, April 7, 2010; Atong Paglaum, Inc. v. COMELEC,
G.R. 203766, April 2, 2013; Blay v. Baña, G.R. No. 232189; March 7, 2018
VII. Aids to construction: Extrinsic Aid
a. Intent and spirit of the law - City of Baguio v. Marcos, G.R. No. L-26100, February 28,
1969; Central Capiz v. Ramirez, G.R. No. 16197, March 12, 1920; People v. Echaves,
G.R. Nos. L-47757-61, January 28, 1980.
b. Legislative history - City of Baguio v. Marcos, supra.; Central Capiz v. Ramirez, supra.;
People v. Echaves, supra.; Agcaoili v. Suguitan, G.R. No. 24806. February 13, 1926;
Florentino v. PNB, G.R. No. L-8782. April 28, 1956; Kare v. Platon, G.R. No. 35902.
October 28, 1931.
c. Contemporary construction – AFP General Insurance Corp. v. Molina, G.R. No.
151133, June 30, 2008; Nestle Phils. v. CA, G.R. No. 86738, Nov 13, 1991; But see
Energy Regulatory Board v. CA, G.R. No. 113079, April 20, 2001.
d. Language of the statute – People v. Yabut, G.R. No. 39085, Sept. 27, 1933; People v.
Rivera, G.R. No. 38215 & 38216, Dec 22, 1933; Cubillo v. SSS, G.R. No. 221067, January
14, 2019
VIII. Application of principles of interpretation:
a. Cessante ratione legis... : People v. Almuete, G.R. No. L-26551, February 27, 1976
b. Legislative omissions and clerical errors: Matabuena v. Cervantes, G.R. No. L-28771,
March 31, 1971; Fariñas v. Barba, G.R. No. 116763. April 19, 1996; Largado v.
Masaganda, G.R. No. L-17624. June 30, 1962; Demafiles v. COMELEC, G.R. No. L-
28396. December 29, 1967
c. Avoiding absurdity: U.S. v. Paguirigan, G.R. No. 5348. November 16, 1909; People v.
Duque, G.R. No. 100285. August 13, 1992
d. Avoiding injustice: Amatan v. Aujero, A.M. No. RTJ-93-956. September 27, 1995;
Salvacion v. Central Bank. G.R. No. 94723. August 21, 1997; People v. Gutierrez, G.R.
No. L-32282-83. November 26, 1970
e. The law does not require the impossible: Akbayan v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 147066.
March 26, 2001
f. Doctrine of Necessary Implication: Macalintal v. Presidential Electoral Tribunal, G.R.
No. 191618. June 7, 2011; Chua v. Civil Service Commission, G.R. No. 88979. February
7, 1992; COA v. Province of Cebu, G.R. No. 141386. November 29, 2001; Shioji v.
Harvey, G.R. No. L-18940. April 27, 1922, Luciano v. Provincial Governor, G.R. No.
30306. June 20, 1969; Angara v. Electoral Commission, G.R. No. 45081. July 15, 1936;
American Tobacco Co. v. Director of Patents, G.R. 26803, Oct. 14, 1975; People v.
Concepcion, G.R. No. 19190. November 29, 1922; Tantuico, Jr. v. Domingo, G.R. No.
96422. February 28, 1994; Robustum Agricultural Corp. v. DAR, G.R. No. 221484,
November 19, 2018
IX. Relation to other statutes: Harmonizing all laws, Special and General laws – People v.
Ejercito, G.R. No. 229861, July 2, 2018; CIR v. Semirara Mining Corp., G.R. No. 202534,
December 5, 2018; Pension and Gratuity Management Center v. AAA, G.R. No. 201292,
August 1, 2018
X. Interpretation of words and phrases
a. In general: Matuguina Integrated Wood Products v. CA, G.R. No. 98310 October 24,
1996; Ernesto v. CA, GR 52178, Sep 28, 1982; Amadora v. CA, G.R. No. L-47745 Apr.
15, 1988
b. General or restricted meaning
c. Associated words:
i. Nosciter a sociis: Carandang v. Santiago, G.R. No. L-8238, May 25, 1955; Co
Kim Chan v. Valdez Tan Keh, G.R. No. L-5, September 17, 1945
ii. Ejusdem generis: Cornejo v. Naval, G.R. No. 33648. July 30, 1930
iii. Expressio unius est exclusio alterius: Escribano v. Avila, G.R. No. L-30375, Sep.
12, 1978
iv. Casus omissus pro omisso habendus est
v. Doctrine of last antecedent / Redendo singula singulis: People v. Tamani, G.R.
No. 22160, Jan 21, 1974
d. Provisos, exceptions, saving clauses: Pendon v. Diasnes, G.R. No. L-5606, August 28,
1952
XI. Strict or liberal construction
a. In general
b. Strict construction: People v. Purisima, G.R. No. L-42050, Nov. 20, 1978; People v.
Subido, G.R. No. L-21734. September 5, 1975; Centeno v. Villalon-Pornillos, G.R. No.
113092, September 1, 1994
c. Liberal construction: Quibuyen v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. L-16854, Dec 26, 1963
XII. Mandatory and directory statutes: In re Guariña, G.R. No. 1179, January 8, 1913; Dizon v.
Encarnacion, G.R. No. L-18615, December 24, 1963; De Mesa v. Mencias, G.R. No. L-
24583. October 29, 1966; Diokno v. Rehabilitation Finance Corp., G.R. No. L-4712. July
11, 1952
XIII. Prospective and retroactive effect of statutes: Ferrer v. Pecson, G.R. No. L-5221.
October 27, 1952; Ortigas & Co. v. Feati Bank & Trust Co., G.R. No. L-24670. December
14, 1979
XIV. Effect of amendment, revision, codification and repeal
Construction of the Constitution – Sarmiento v. Mison, G.R. No. 79974, December 17, 1987