Mr. Valdecantos is the Head of the Firm’s Labor and Employment Department. He leads a team of lawyers who specialize on different areas of labor and employment laws, which include money claims and termination disputes, labor litigation, voluntary arbitration cases, certification elections, social security cases, overseas employment, collective bargaining negotiations, preventive mediation/conciliation of labor disputes, strikes and lockouts, union representation issues, conduct of administrative investigations, employee grievances, formulation of employee code of conduct/policies, conduct of labor audits, implementation of corporate mergers and acquisitions and incorporation of business entities, and data privacy issues relating to employment. He has advised senior managements, boards of directors, and key officers of various multinational and domestic corporations on the legal aspects of employment-related projects and undertakings. He has also handled cases of reputable educational institutions, which include cases involving school employees, faculty, students, and parents.
Among his significant cases are:
- he successfully defended, at all levels of litigation, a multinational financial institution in a claim for illegal dismissal and damages that was filed by a former high-ranking officer of the company;
- he handled the successful conclusion of a Collective Bargaining Agreement of a renowned educational institution with its rank-and-file union; and
- he has assisted a number of BPO companies in labor standards inspections and complaints relating to contractualization.
Mr. Valdecantos has been consistently cited by legal publications as a Leading Lawyer in the practice area of labor and employment. Chambers Asia described him as having “the necessary skills to assist with labour, employment and IP affairs.” He was identified in The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2021 Editorial as a recommended lawyer in the practice area of Labor and Employment.
He also conducts lectures and seminars on a variety of topics on labor and employment laws. Among his recent significant speaking engagements are:
- “Lecture on Labor Standards and Labor Relations Laws in the Philippines” held at Taguig City, Philippines in October 2017;
- “Latest regulation on contracting out: DOLE Department Order 174” held at Muntinlupa City, Philippines in April 2017;
- “Student Discipline Cases” held at Muntinlupa City, Philippines in June 2016;
- “Employment versus Outsourcing” held at Taguig City, Philippines in September 2014; and
- “Developments in Philippine Labor Laws and Practices” during the Fortress Intelligence Forum held at Singapore in June 2012.
Mr. Valdecantos is the primary representative of the Firm to the People Management Association of the Philippines, and the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines. He also acts as one of the Firm’s representatives to the Employers Confederation of the Philippines.
He was admitted to the Philippine Bar in 1998 and is a member of the Pasay-Paranaque-Las Pinas-Muntinlupa Chapter of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines.