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People v.

Vergara Jr. v. Coca Cola Bottlers Incentives (SMI) and to the amount of
Philippines Inc PhP496,016.67 which respondent allegedly
deducted illegally, representing the unpaid
FACTS: accounts of two dealers within his jurisdiction,
petitioner filed a complaint before the NLRC on
Petitioner Ricardo E. Vergara, Jr. was an June 11, 2002 for the payment of his Full
employee of respondent Coca-Cola Bottlers Retirement Benefits, Merit Increase,
Philippines, Inc. from May 1968 until he retired Commission/Incentives, Length of Service,
on January 31, 2002 as a District Sales Actual, Moral and Exemplary Damages, and
Supervisor (DSS) for Las Pis City, Metro Manila. Attorneys Fees. Subsequently, they filed their
As stipulated in respondents existing Retirement respective Position Paper and Reply thereto
Plan Rules and Regulations at the time, the dealing on the two remaining issues of SMI
Annual Performance Incentive Pay of RSMs, entitlement and illegal deduction.
DSSs, and SSSs shall be considered in the
computation of retirement benefits. The LA rendered a Decision in favor of
petitioner, directing respondent to reimburse the
Claiming his entitlement to an additional amount illegally deducted from petitioners
PhP474,600.00 as Sales Management retirement package and to integrate therein his
SMI privilege. Upon appeal of respondent, To be considered as a regular company
however, the NLRC modified the award and practice, the employee must prove by
deleted the payment of SMI. substantial evidence that the giving of the
benefit is done over a long period of time, and
Petitioner then moved to partially execute the that it has been made consistently and
reimbursement of illegal deduction, which the LA deliberately. Jurisprudence has not laid down
granted despite respondents opposition. Later, any hard-and-fast rule as to the length of time
without prejudice to the pendency of petitioners that company practice should have been
petition for certiorari before the CA, the parties exercised in order to constitute voluntary
executed a Compromise Agreementon October employer practice.The common denominator in
4, 2006, whereby petitioner acknowledged full previously decided cases appears to be the
payment by respondent of the amount of regularity and deliberateness of the grant of
PhP496,016.67 covering the amount illegally benefits over a significant period of time. It
deducted. requires an indubitable showing that the
employer agreed to continue giving the benefit
The CA dismissed petitioners case on January knowing fully well that the employees are not
9, 2007 and denied his motion for covered by any provision of the law or
reconsideration thereafter. Hence, this present agreement requiring payment thereof. In sum,
petition to resolve the singular issue of whether the benefit must be characterized by regularity,
the SMI should be included in the computation voluntary and deliberate intent of the employer
of petitioners retirement benefits on the ground to grant the benefit over a considerable period of
of consistent company practice. Petitioner time.
insistently avers that many DSSs who retired
without achieving the sales and collection Upon review of the entire case records, the SC
targets were given the average SMI in their finds no substantial evidence to prove that the
retirement package. grant of SMI to all retired DSSs regardless of
whether or not they qualify to the same had
ISSUE: Whether or not petitioner is entitled to ripened into company practice. Despite more
the payment of SMI than sufficient opportunity given him while his
case was pending before the NLRC, the CA,
HELD: No. CA decision affirmed. and even to this Court, petitioner utterly failed to
adduce proof to establish his allegation that SMI
Labor Law- To be considered as a regular has been consistently, deliberately and
company practice, the employee must prove by voluntarily granted to all retired DSSs without
substantial evidence that the giving of the any qualification or conditions whatsoever.
benefit is done over a long period of time, and
that it has been made consistently and DENIED
Carolina Industries Inc v. CMS Stock
There is diminution of benefits when the Brokerage Inc
following requisites are present: (1) the grant or
benefit is founded on a policy or has ripened into U.S. v. De Guzman
a practice over a long period of time; (2) the
practice is consistent and deliberate; (3) the Ortigas & Co. Ltd. Partnership v. Feati Bank
practice is not due to error in the construction or and Trust Co.
application of a doubtful or difficult question of
law; and (4) the diminution or discontinuance is Facts:
done unilaterally by the employer.
On March 4, 1952, Ortigas sold Lot 5 and
6, Block 31 of the Highway Hills Held:
Subdivision at Mandaluyong to Augusto
Padilla y Angeles and Natividad Angeles. Resolution No. 27 prevails over the
The latter transferred their rights in contract stipulations. Section 3 of RA
favour of Emma Chavez, upon 2264 of the Local Autonomy Act
completion of payment a deed was empowers a Municipal Council to adopt
executed with stipulations, one of which zoning and subdivision ordinances or
is that the use of the lots are to be regulations for the Municipality. Section
exclusive for residential purposes only. 12 or RA 2264 states that implied power
This was annotated in the Transfer of the municipality should be “liberally
Certificate of Titles No. 101509 and construed in it’s favour”, “to give more
101511. Feati then acquired Lot 5 directly power to the local government in
from Emma Chavez and Lot 6 from promoting economic conditions, social
Republic Flour Mills. On May 5, 1963, welfare, and material progress in the
Feati started construction of a building community”. This is found in the General
on both lots to be devoted for banking Welfare Clause of the said act. Although
purposes but could also be for non-impairment of contracts is
residential use. Ortigas sent a written constitutionally guaranteed, it is not
demand to stop construction but Feati absolute since it has to be reconciled
continued contending that the building with the legitimate exercise of police
was being constructed according to the power, e.g. the power to promote health,
zoning regulations as stated in Municipal morals, peace, education, good order or
Resolution 27 declaring the area along safety and general welfare of the people.
the West part of EDSA to be a Resolution No. 27 was obviously passed
commercial and industrial zone. Civil in exercise of police power to safeguard
case No. 7706 was made and decided in health, safety, peace and order and the
favour of Feati. general welfare of the people in the
locality as it would not be a conducive
Issue: residential area considering the amount
of traffic, pollution, and noise which
Whether or not Resolution number 27 results in the surrounding industrial and
declaring Lot 5 and 6 to be part of an commercial establishments.
industrial and commercial zone is valid
considering the contract stipulation in Decision dismissing the complaint of
the Transfer Certificate of Titles. Ortigas is AFFIRMED