Changing Measures: The Dawn of a New Age

Changing Measures: The Dawn of a New Age

No person shall be deprived of his life, liberty, or property without due process of law1. This was guaranteed by no less than the Constitution – our fundamental law, in its mission to find a striking balance between the immense powers of the State on one hand, and an...
Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

The gig economy involves work done in digital labor platforms which includes both web-based platforms, where work is outsourced through an open call to a geographically dispersed crowd (crowdwork), and through location-based apps (work on-demand via apps) which...
AI, Employee Privacy and COVID-19

AI, Employee Privacy and COVID-19

For more than a year now, the current COVID-19 pandemic has affected “how we do things” in all aspects of our lives. Apart from “shocking” our health systems, this pandemic forced companies to adapt in order to survive, drastically changing working arrangements....
A Step Closer to a Personal Property and Security Registry

No Vaccine, No Work

It was reported in the news recently, that CNN in New York, USA fired three employees who violated company policy by reporting for work unvaccinated against the COVID-19 virus1. Jeff Zucker, CNN chief, was reported to have said that CNN has a zero-tolerance policy on...
Understanding NFTs as Virtual Assets

Understanding NFTs as Virtual Assets

Play-to-Earn games have been gaining traction recently. With popular games like Axie Infinity and My Defi Pet, users are drawn to the unique selling proposition that one can earn money as they play. In a nutshell, Play-to-Earn games involve the use of Non-Fungible...
Replacement of Lost Owner’s Duplicate Certificate of Title and e-Title

Love in the Time of Employment

Management prerogative refers to every employer’s inherent right to regulate, according to his own discretion and judgment, all aspects of employment, including hiring, work assignments, working methods, the time, place and manner of work, work supervision, transfer...
Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

Regulating Bayanihan

When the President announced stricter quarantine measures in the National Capital Region and its nearby provinces last March, people were mandated to observe strict home quarantine thereby restricting movement to accessing essential goods and services1. The stricter...
Suspension of the Imposition of VAT on Local Purchases of RBEs

The Value of a Signature

In 10 November 2020, the Supreme Court en banc promulgated its decision in Gomez v. People, effectively reshaping the tides of judicial policy. In Gomez, the Supreme Court discussed whether the absence of the City Prosecutor’s signature and approval in an Information...
More Than a Year Into the Pandemic: New Employment Rules and Procedures for Foreign Nationals Coming into the Philippines

Revisiting the Labor Market Test

It has always been the policy of the Philippines to prioritize the welfare of Filipino workers in the country. Following the mandate of the Labor Code of the Philippines, employers may only engage the services of a non-resident alien upon a determination that there is...
Suspension of the Imposition of VAT on Local Purchases of RBEs

Image Rights in the Influencer Era

Over the past decade, we have seen the democratization of content creation as social media outfits like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter provide artists, vloggers, influencers, and content creators platforms to express themselves and build personal brands....
Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

Ventilation and COVID-19 in the Workplace

On March 3, the secretary of the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) Silvestre H. Bello III issued Department Order (DO) 224-21 Series of 2021 entitled “Guidelines on Ventilation for Workplaces and Public Transport to Prevent and Control the Spread of COVID-19.”...
Creative Destruction

Creative Destruction

In the book Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty by Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson, the authors argue that the prosperity of a nation is not primarily based on geography, climate, or culture. The authors, rather, point to the existence...
AI, Employee Privacy and COVID-19

Tax Treatment of COVID-19 Vaccines

In the beginning of the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic, strict government regulations were imposed as an attempt to stem the transmission of the virus. These restrictions required business establishments to put their workplace operations on hold, save...
Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

Employment Suspension During the Pandemic

On Oct. 23, the Honorable Secretary of the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE), Silvestre H. Bello, signed Department Order No. 215 Series of 2020 (DO No. 215-20) entitled, “Rule Amending Section 12 of Rule I, Rules Implementing Book VI of the Labor Code on...
The Proposed Internet Transactions Act and the Uncertainties in Online Retail

The Sanctity of Our Home Offices

Often quoted in cases involving searches and seizures is the principle that “a man’s home is his castle.” This principle finds its roots in the Constitutional right of all citizens to be secure in their homes and to privacy. At the start of the second quarter of this...
CREATE— A Reformation of the Corporate Income Tax and Incentives System

The New Normal in Basic Education

As the country continues to confront different issues brought about by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Department of Education (DepEd) is addressing the challenges in the basic education for the school year 2020-2021 through its Basic Education...
Effects on the Ground by Expanded Court Jurisdiction in Civil Cases

Zooming in on the SPEAKER: Alan vs Allan

For the last few weeks, we have been witnesses to a highly contentious, if not bitter, speakership race between former Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and newly elected Speaker Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco. This bitter fight stems from the highly publicized...
A Step Closer to a Personal Property and Security Registry

Rx: Presidential Truth Serum

The year 2020 has brought to us a forced awareness of health matters, both on a public and private plane. Indeed, we have not seen in modern history such a paralysis brought about by an ancient enemy, which has pretty much held the whole world hostage. But world...
Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

Free Speech vs Fake News

Article III, Section 4 of the Constitution provides that “no law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.” Thus, the right...
Suspension of the Imposition of VAT on Local Purchases of RBEs

Virtual Notarization

Going through reportedly the world’s longest lockdown because of COVID-19, from easing up and back to further restricting quarantine measures, it would seem that this pandemic has brought both the good and bad out of this government. As the confirmed COVID-19 cases in...
Suspension of the Imposition of VAT on Local Purchases of RBEs

Broadcast Media and Government Regulation

Broadcasting, whether by radio or television stations, requires authorization from the government before they can operate. The pre-regulation history of radio and television stations illustrates the need for government intervention, as opposed to other industries such...
CREATE— A Reformation of the Corporate Income Tax and Incentives System

Hacking In A Time of COVID-19

More than two months ago, the Philippines was placed under a nationwide lockdown. Overnight, everything became digital. The traditional classroom set-up became virtual classes, while boardroom meetings, as well as informal gatherings, shifted to video conferencing...
Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

The New Normal Workplace

The COVID-19 global pandemic has not only struck people’s health, but also the economy, particularly the labor and employment sector. Based on reports by the International Labor Organization (ILO), COVID-19 is currently having a catastrophic effect globally on working...
AI, Employee Privacy and COVID-19

Copyright or Copywrong?

Within just two months, the way we lived our lives has immensely changed. Essentially everything is now done within the confines of one’s home, be it work, exercise, or hobbies. For the privileged, the daily routine includes time for binge-watching different series,...
Suspension of the Imposition of VAT on Local Purchases of RBEs

Fine Print

What is Instagram in a pandemic? It may be coffee-related arm exercises, or floating quiz boxes. It can be people singing and Lennon turning in his grave. It can also be a study on rights and nuances in the protection and limitation thereof. In 2016, Mashable, Inc....
The State of COVID-19 Vaccine Procurement by the Private Sector in the Philippines

Coping with COVID-19

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) a pandemic and people around the globe are understandably very worried, if not in a state of panic. In the Philippines, in an effort to quell the upward surge in infections...
AI, Employee Privacy and COVID-19

The Lesser Known Facet of Quo Warranto

The extraordinary writ of quo warranto has been raised to public consciousness again recently that it begs to be understood further. It will be recalled that an action for quo warranto was filed by the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) a couple of years ago to...
A Step Closer to a Personal Property and Security Registry

Travel in the Time of 2019-nCoV

Following the World Health Organization’s declaration of the 2019 novel coronavirus (renamed COVID-19) outbreak as a public health emergency, the Philippine government on Feb. 2 deemed it prudent to implement a temporary travel ban against all foreign nationals coming...
Managing Employment Contracts in the Time of COVID-19

Revival of Expired Corporations

Much has been said about the feature of the Revised Corporation Code (RCC) allowing corporations to have perpetual existence under Section 11 of the RCC. Yet, there is also a nifty feature tucked in under the same section allowing the revival of those corporations...
Work Suspension During Calamities

Work Suspension During Calamities

On Jan. 12 — nearly half a century after its last eruption — Taal Volcano had a phreatic eruption, causing ash to fall on numerous cities and necessitating the evacuation of families living near the volcano. With the sudden turn of events, immediate evacuation and...
Suspension of the Imposition of VAT on Local Purchases of RBEs

Easing Doing Business in the Philippines

How difficult is it to do business in the Philippines in comparison to other economies? One way to answer this complex question is to look at the annual Ease of Doing Business Index issued by the World Bank. As its name suggests, the Index ranks almost all the world’s...
Effects on the Ground by Expanded Court Jurisdiction in Civil Cases

Judges-at-Large Act: An Aid to Justice

To quote Former Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban: “Trial courts are the dispensers of justice closest to the poor.” But when the demand for justice is clearly disproportionate to that of the number of our judges in the lower courts, how can justice even be dispensed?...
Body-Worn Cameras in the Execution of Warrants

The New Law On Service Charges

With the enactment of Republic Act No. 11360, rank-and-file employees of restaurants, hotels and similar establishments are now entitled to 100% of the service charges collected from customers. R.A. No. 11360 — or “An Act Providing that Service Charges Collected by...
A Step Closer to a Personal Property and Security Registry

Changing Times for PEZA Locators

Taxes are integral to any economic policy. Investments flow in and out of the economy based on fiscal incentives as much as human capital. For Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) locators, investors were enticed to invest in the Philippines with tax incentives,...
Suspension of the Imposition of VAT on Local Purchases of RBEs

Stop Debt Collection Harassment

In these times when loans are easily available through online consumer financing or other private lending companies, when there is easy access to online cash loans without any collateral requirements, complex approval procedures, or prolonged application waiting time,...
Workers’ Rights in the Gig Economy

Names with Attitudes

Pronounced a certain way, Doctor Drai does not seem too different from Dr. Dre. However, trademark laws see (or hear) otherwise. In the case of Andre Young v. Draion M. Burch, DO, gynecologist Dr. Draion M. Burch sought to register the “Doctor Drai” mark for obstetric...
A Step Closer to a Personal Property and Security Registry

Compulsory Investment of Branch Offices

The Revised Corporation Code (RCC), which took effect on Feb. 23 this year, introduced amendments to the otherwise outdated Corporation Code. One of the amendments can be found in Section 143 of the RCC which prescribed the amount of required securities deposit for...
What Makes A Contract Valid?

What Makes A Contract Valid?

I have conducted a few lectures on Obligations and Contracts, in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry, to businesspeople with startups. I noticed that one of the most common misconceptions is that “contracts must always be in writing, otherwise there...
A Step Closer to a Personal Property and Security Registry

Revisiting Important Concepts in Arbitration

Alternative dispute resolution methods or ADRs, i.e., arbitration, mediation, conciliation among others, “are encouraged by the Supreme Court, since by enabling the parties to resolve their disputes amicably, they provide solutions that are less time-consuming, less...
The MOU Between PHL and China and a Timely Revisit of the La Bugal Case

The Struggle with Premature Campaigns

One who has experienced an election or two will probably be familiar with the term “premature campaigning,” and what it means. Generally, we understand it to be the situation where prior to the official start of the campaign period (90 days for national election; 45...

Who is the ‘Real’ Owner?

In an effort to increase transparency in the beneficial ownership and control of domestic corporations — and to prevent their misuse for money laundering, organized crime and terrorists financing purposes, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), pursuant to...
The MOU Between PHL and China and a Timely Revisit of the La Bugal Case

The Mental Health Act: A Boon to Filipinos

With the alarming increase of mental health illnesses today, with more than 300 million people suffering from depression alone according to the World Health Organization, the enactment of Republic Act No. 11032 or the Mental Health Act last 20 June 2018 is a boon to...
A Peek into the Revised Corporation Code of the Philippines

Business-minded or business-hindered?

“A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer.” — Nolan Bushnell, Entrepreneur The art of growing a country’s economy is akin to solving...

The TRABAHO Bill:Recurring dilemmas

WHILE few of us were watching, the House Committee on Ways and Means approved on Aug. 7 the substitute bill for the second package of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN), which is now known as the Tax Reform for Attracting Better and High-quality...

Video Games and Intellectual Property

LAST Aug. 26, 2018, the international gaming community watched intently as two of the world’s best DOTA2 teams went head to head for the championship title of The International 2018 (TI8), the biggest annual competition in the e-sports universe. OG emerged victorious,...

Is ‘tambay’ a crime?

“I dle, shiftless and worthless man who made no attempt to follow any legal calling, and whose habits of life were those of an immoral and dissolute good for nothing.” This is how Justice Carson described a man guilty of vagrancy. A decade after its enactment, Act No....

The PCC’s draft joint venture guidelines

Just recently, the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) published the draft Joint Venture Guidelines (Draft Guidelines) aimed to help businesses determine when a joint venture shall be subject to compulsory notification pursuant to its power to issue guidelines on...

Deriving value from E-Learning platforms

Business is an ever-changing landscape. It finds ways to create assets, improve what has been already done, and maximize utility at the least possible cost. What organizations often disregard is the value of knowledge and training — the value of creating an avenue for...

How to maintain a trademark registration

To maintain a trademark registration with the Philippine Intellectual Property Office (IPOPHL), the registrant must use the mark in commerce and submit a Declaration of Actual Use. This is an affidavit that details information on the registered trademark and the goods...

In funds we trust

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), recognizing the financial sophistication of trust funds, released on April 20, the proposed rules and regulations on determining whether a trust fund is a qualified buyer (Proposed Rules). To put things into context, under...

Much EndO About Nothing

German-American socialist editor and author, Oscar Ameringer, once said: “Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other.” This is, indeed, a tough balancing act if at all...

The TRAIN in the eyes of the DoF and BIR

The law cannot just be gauged on the basis of its provision. One should consider how its administrator views it. It should be recalled Congress recently passed the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act, with the veto of its certain provisions. It would...

Overtaxed corporations?

In today’s business community, corporations abound and are still growing in number. In many cases, entrepreneurs opt to conduct business as a corporate entity because of its obvious advantages. For one, a corporation makes projects requiring huge investments more...

New IPO Guidelines for patent examination

In line with its goal to deliver timely and quality patents, utility models and industrial designs, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPO) recently released the Manual for Patent Examination Procedure (MPEP). The MPEP describes in detail certain...

Immortality of gift checks

During the last Holiday Season, it was not unusual for companies, firms and even individuals to give gift checks, gift certificates, or gift cards to their clients, employees, friends and loved ones. This practice is now widely accepted in lieu of giving an actual...