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Commissioner of Internal Revenue vs Filipinas 1957.

As petitioner practically admitted the material

Compania De Seguros factual allegations in the petition for review, the case
was submitted for judgment on the pleadings.
On November 22, 1958, the Court of Tax Appeals
Respondent Filipinas Compañia de Seguros, an
rendered a decision sustaining the contention of
insurance company, is also engaged in business as
respondent company and ordering the petitioner
a real estate dealer.
Commissioner of Internal Revenue to desist from
On January 4, 1956, respondent, in accordance collecting the P350.00 additional assessment. From
with the single rate then prescribed under Section this decision, petitioner appealed to us.
182 of the National Internal Revenue Code. [1] Paid
the amount of P150.00 as real estate dealer's fixed
annual tax for the year 1956. Subsequently said Whether or not Republic Act No. 1612 has a
Section 182 of the Code was amended by Republic retroactive effect.
Act No. 1612, which took effect on August 24, 1956,
Whether or not Republic Act: No. 1612 Section 182 of
by providing a scale of graduated rates: P150 if the
the National Internal Revenue Code covers only
annual income of the real estate dealer from his
fixed taxes on occupation and does not cover fixed
business as such is P4, 000, but does not exceed P10,
taxes on business.
000; P300, if such annual income exceeds P10, 000
but does not exceed P30, 000; and P500 if such HELD
annual income exceeds P30, 000.
As a rule, laws have no retroactive effect, unless the
On June 17, 1957, petitioner Commissioner of Internal contrary is provided. (Art. 4, Civil Code of the
Revenue assessed and demanded from respondent Philippines; Manila Trading and Supply Co. vs.
(whose annual income exceeded P30, 000.00) the Santos, et al., 66 Phil., 237; La Provisora Filipina vs.
amount of P350.00 as additional real estate dealer's Ledda, 66 Phil., 573.) Otherwise stated, a statute
fixed annual tax for the year 1956. On July 16, 1957, should be considered as prospective in its operation
respondent wrote a letter to petitioner stating that whether it enacts, amends or repeals a tax, unless
the "records will show that the real estate dealer's the language of the statute clearly, demands or
fixed tax for 1956 of this Company was fully paid by expresses that it shall have a retroactive effect. (61
us prior to the effectivity of Republic Act No. 1612 C. J. 1602, cited in Lorenzo vs. Posadas, 64 Phil., 353.)
which amended, among other things, Sections 178 The rule applies "with greater force to the case at
and 182 of the National Internal Revenue Code." bar, considering that Republic Act No. 1612, which
And, as to the retroactive effect of said Republic Act imposes the new and higher rates of real estate
No. 1612, respondent added that the Republic Act dealer's annual fixed tax, expressly provides in
No. 1856 which, among other things, amended Section 21 thereof that said Act "shall take effect
Section 182 of the National Internal Revenue Code, upon its approval" on August 24, 1956.
Congress has clearly shown its intention when it
provided that the increase in rates of taxes The instant case involves the fixed annual real estate
envisioned by Republic Act No. 1612 is to be made dealer's tax for 1956. There is no dispute that before
effective as of 1 January 1957". the enactment of Republic Act No. 1612 on August
24, 1956, the uniform fixed annual real estate dealer's
On October 23, 1957, petitioner informed tax was P150.00 for all owners of rental properties
respondent that "Republic Act No. 1856 which took receiving an aggregate amount of P3,000.00 or
effect June 22, 1957 amended the date of effectivity more a year in the form of rentals[2] and that "the
of Republic Act 1612 to January 1, 1957. However, yearly fixed taxes are due on the first of January of
the said amendment applies only to fixed taxes on each year" unless tendered in semi-annual or
occupation and not to fixed taxes on business." quarterly installments.[3] Since the petitioner
Hence, petitioner insisted that respondent should indisputably paid in full on January 4, 1956, the total
pay the amount of P350.00 as additional real estate annual tax then prescribed for the year 1956, to
dealer's fixed annual tax for the year 1956. require it to pay an additional sum of P350.00 to
complete the P500.00 provided in Republic Act No.
On November 20, 1957, respondent filed with the
1612 which became effective by its very terms only
Court of Tax Appeals a petition for review. To this
on August. 24, 1956, would, in the language of the
petition, petitioner filed his answer on December 6,
Court of Tax Appeals, result in the imposition upon
respondent of a tax burden to which it was not liable indication that Congress limited the proviso to
before the enactment of said amendatory act, thus occupation taxes.
rendering its operation retroactive rather than
"Even though the primary purpose of the proviso is to
prospective, which cannot be done, as it would
limit or restrain the general language of a statute, the
contravene the aforecited Section 21 of Republic
legislature, unfortunately, does not always use it with
Act No. 1612 as well as the established rule regarding
technical correctness; consequently, where its use
the prospectivity of operation of statutes.
creates an ambiguity, it is the duty of the court to
The view that Congress did intend to impose said ascertain the legislative" intention, through resort to
increased rates of real estate dealer's annual tax the usual rules of construction applicable to statutes,
prospectively and not retroactively, "finds some generally and give it effect even though the statute
affirmation in Republic Act No. 1856, approved on is thereby enlarged, or the proviso made to assume
June 22, 1957, which fixed the effective date of said the force of an independent enactment and
new rates under Republic Act: No. 1612 by inserting although a proviso as such has no existence apart
the following proviso in Section 182 of the National from the provision which it is designed to limit or to
Internal Revenue Code: qualify." (Statutory Construction by E. T. Crawford,
pp. 604-606.)
"Provided, further, That any amount collected in
excess of the rates in effect prior to January one, STATCON: When construing a statute, the reason for
nineteen hundred and fifty-seven, shall be refunded its enactment should be kept in mind, and the
or credited to the taxpayer concerned subject to statute should be construed with reference to its
the provisions of section, three hundred and nine of intended scope and purpose." (Id. at p. 249.)
this Code." (Sec. 182 (b) (2) (1).)
On the general principle of prospectivity of statutes,
Petitioner, however, contends that the above- on the language of Republic Act 1612 itself,
quoted provision refers only to fixed taxes on especially Section 21 thereof, and on the basis of its
occupation and does not cover fixed taxes on intended scope and purpose as disclosed in the
business, such as the real estate dealer's fixed tax Congressional Records, we find ourselves in
herein involved. This is technically, correct, but we agreement with the Court of Tax Appeals.
note from the deliberations in the Senate, where the
Wherefore, the decision appealed from is hereby
proviso in question was introduced as an
affirmed, without costs. So ordered.
amendment, that said House Bill No. 5819 which
became Republic Act No, 1856 was considered, Ma. Merceditas n. Gutierrez v. House of
amended, and enacted into law, in order precisely Representatives Committee on Justice
that the "iniquitous effects" which were then being
felt by taxpayers, in general, on account of the FACTS:
approval of Republic Act No. 1612, which was being
The Ombudsman, Ma. Merceditas Gutierrez
given retroactive effect, by the Bureau of Internal
(petitioner), challenges via petition for certiorari and
Revenue by collecting these taxes retroactively from
prohibition the Resolutions of September 1 and 7,
January 1, 1956, be eliminated and complaints
2010 of the House of Representatives Committee on
against such action be finally settled. (See Senate
Justice (public respondent). Before the 15th
Congressional Record, May 4, 1957, pp. 1032- 1033.)
Congress opened its first session on July 26, 2010 (the
It is also to be observed that said House Bill No. 5819 fourth Monday of July, in accordance with Section
as originally presented, was expressly intended to 15, Article VI of the Constitution) or on July 22, 2010,
amend certain provisions of the National Internal private respondents Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel, Danilo
Revenue Code dealing on fixed taxes on business. Lim, and spouses Felipe and Evelyn Pestaño
The provisions in respect of fixed tax on occupation (Baraquel group) filed an impeachment complaint
were merely subsequently added. This would seem against petitioner, upon the endorsement of Party-
to indicate that the proviso in question was intended List Representatives Arlene Bag-ao and Walden
to cover not only fixed taxes on occupation, but also Bello.
fixed taxes on business. (Senate Congressional
On August 3, 2010, private respondents Renato
Record, March 7, 1957, p. 444.) The fact that said
Reyes, Jr., Mother Mary John Mananzan, Danilo
proviso was placed only at the end of paragraph
Ramos, Edre Olalia, Ferdinand Gaite and James
"(B) on occupation" is not, therefore, in view of the
Terry Ridon (Reyes group) filed another
circumstances, decisive and unmistakable
impeachment complaint against petitioner with a instrumentality of the Government." Francisco
resolution of endorsement by Party-List characterizes the power of judicial review as a duty
Representatives Neri Javier Colmenares, Teodoro which, as the expanded certiorari jurisdiction of this
Casiño, Rafael Mariano, Luzviminda Ilagan, Antonio Court reflects, includes the power to "determine
Tinio and Emerenciana de Jesus. On even date, the whether or not there has been a grave abuse of
House of Representatives provisionally adopted the discretion... amounting to lack or excess of
Rules of Procedure in Impeachment Proceedings of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or
the 14th Congress. By letter still of even date, the instrumentality of the Government."[
Secretary General transmitted the Reyes group's
Petitioner's arguments: Petitioner alleges that public
complaint to Speaker Belmonte who, by
respondent's chairperson, Representative Niel Tupas,
Memorandum of August 9, 2010, also directed... the
Jr. (Rep. Tupas), is the subject of an investigation she
Committee on Rules to include it in the Order of
is conducting, while his father, former Iloilo Governor
Niel Tupas, Sr., had been charged by her with
On August 11, 2010 at 4:47 p.m., during its plenary violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act
session, the House of Representatives simultaneously before the Sandiganbayan. To petitioner, the
referred both complaints to public respondent. After actions taken by her office against Rep. Tupas and
hearing, public respondent, by Resolution of his father influenced the proceedings taken by
September 1, 2010, found both complaints sufficient public respondent in such a way that bias and
in form, which complaints it considered to have vindictiveness played a big part in arriving at the
been referred to it at exactly the same time. finding of... sufficiency of form and substance of the
complaints against her.
On September 6, 2010, petitioner tried to file a
motion to reconsider the September 1, 2010 Petitioner further claims that public respondent
Resolution of public respondent. Public respondent failed to ascertain the sufficiency of form and
refused to accept the motion, however, for substance of the complaints on the basis of the
prematurity; instead, it advised petitioner to await standards set by the Constitution and its own
the notice for her to file an answer to... the Impeachment Rules.
complaints, drawing petitioner to furnish copies of
her motion to each of the 55 members of public
respondent. Whether public respondent committed grave abuse
of discretion amounting to lack or excess of
September 13, 2010, petitioner filed with this Court
jurisdiction in issuing its two assailed Resolutions.
the present petition with application for injunctive
Petitioner basically anchors her claim on alleged...
reliefs. House of Representatives the exclusive power
violation of the due process clause (Art. III, Sec. 1)
to initiate impeachment cases, provides for several
and of the one-year bar provision (Art. XI, Sec 3, par.
limitations to the exercise of such power as
5) of the Constitution. The one-year bar rule
embodied in Section 3(2), (3), (4) and (5), Article XI...
thereof. These limitations include the manner of Ruling:
filing, required vote to impeach, and the one year
bar on the impeachment of one and the same GMCR, Inc. v. Bell Telecommunications
official. House of Representatives the exclusive
An abbreviated pace in the conduct of
power to initiate impeachment cases, provides for
proceedings is not per se an indication of bias,
several limitations to the exercise of such power as
however. So Santos-Concio v. Department of
embodied in Section 3(2), (3), (4) and (5), Article XI...
Justice [31] holds:
thereof. These limitations include the manner of
filing, required vote to impeach, and the one year
bar on the impeachment of one and the same
official. The swift completion of the Investigating Panel's
initial task cannot be relegated as shoddy or shady
Francisco characterizes the power of judicial review without discounting the presumably regular
as a duty which, as the expanded certiorari performance of not just one but five state...
jurisdiction of this Court reflects, includes the power prosecutors. Rule III(A) of the Impeachment Rules of
to "determine whether or not there has been a grave the 15th Congress reflects the impeachment
abuse of discretion... amounting to lack or excess of procedure at the Committee-level, particularly
jurisdiction on the part of any branch or Section 5[34] which denotes that petitioner's initial
participation in the impeachment proceedings the publication.”Promulgation" and "publication"
opportunity to file an Answer - starts after the likewise take on different meanings as they are part
Committee on Justice finds the complaint sufficient of a multi-stage procedure in quasi-legislation. As
in form and substance. That the Committee refused detailed in one case the publication of
to accept petitioner's motion for reconsideration implementing rules occurs... after their promulgation
from its finding of sufficiency of form of the or adoption.
impeachment... complaints is apposite,
Promulgation must thus be used in the context in
conformably with the Impeachment Rules.
which it is generally understood--that is, to make
Notatu dignum is the fact that it is only in the known. Generally verba sunt generaliter
Impeachment Rules where a determination of inteligencia. General must prevail unless it was
sufficiency of form and substance of an clearly intended that the restricted sense was to be
impeachment complaint is made necessary. This used. Hence, unless it is expressly provided that a
requirement is not explicitly found in the organic law, legislative act is necessary to enforce a
as Section 3(2) Article XI of the Constitution basically constitutional mandate, the presumption now is that
merely requires a "hearing. In the discharge of its all provisions of the... constitution are self-executing.
constitutional duty, the House deemed that a finding
In case of doubt, the Constitution should be
of sufficiency of form and substance in an
considered self-executing rather than non-self-
impeachment complaint is vital "to effectively
executing . . . . "Effectively carry[ing] out the
carry... out" the impeachment process, hence, such
purpose"... impeachment is primarily for the
additional requirement in the Impeachment Rule
protection of the people as a body politic,
To recall, days after the 15th Congress opened on Francisco[58] states that the term "initiate" means to
July 26, 2010 or on August 3, 2010, public respondent file the complaint and take initial action on it.[59]
provisionally adopted the Impeachment Rules of the The initiation starts with the filing of the complaint
14th Congress and thereafter published on which... must be accompanied with an action to set
September 2, 2010 its Impeachment Rules, the complaint moving. It refers to the filing of the
admittedly... substantially identical with that of the impeachment complaint coupled with Congress'
14th Congress, in two newspapers of general taking initial action of said complaint. The initial
circulation... the provisional adoption of... the action taken by the House on the complaint is the
previous Congress' Impeachment Rules is within the referral... of the complaint to the Committee on
power of the House to promulgate its rules on Justice... rom the records of the Constitutional
impeachment to effectively carry out the avowed Commission, to the amicus curiae briefs of two
purpose. former Constitutional Commissioners, it is without a
doubt that the term "to initiate" refers to the filing of
The rules on impeachment, as contemplated by the
the impeachment complaint coupled with
framers of the Constitution, merely aid or supplement
Congress'... taking initial action of said complaint.
the procedural aspects of impeachment
Initiation takes place by the act of filing and referral
The assailed Resolutions of September 1, 2010 and
or endorsement of the impeachment complaint to
September 7, 2010 of public respondent, the House
the House Committee on Justice or, by the filing by
of Representatives Committee on Justice, are NOT
at least one-third[61] of the members of the House of
Representatives with the Secretary General of the
House, the meaning of Section 3 (5) of Article XI
becomes clear.

"Promulgate" and "publish," the case of the Judiciary

is in point. In promulgating rules concerning the
protection and enforcement of constitutional rights,
pleading, practice and procedure in all courts, the
Court has invariably required the publication of
these rules for their effectivity. As far as
promulgation of judgments is concerned, however,
promulgation means "the delivery of the decision to
the clerk of court for filing and