The legitimacy of the legal personality of a union cannot be collaterally attacked in a petition for certification election.

The legitimacy of the legal personality of KML cannot be collaterally attacked in a petition for certification election.

We agree with the ruling of the Office of the Secretary of DOLE that the legitimacy of the legal personality of KML cannot be collaterally attacked in a petition for certification election proceeding.  This is in consonance with our ruling in Laguna Autoparts Manufacturing Corporation v. Office of the Secretary, Department of Labor and Employment[49] that “such legal personality may not be subject to a collateral attack but only through a separate action instituted particularly for the purpose of assailing it.”[50]  We further held therein that:

This is categorically prescribed by Section 5, Rule V of the Implementing Rules of Book V, which states as follows:

SEC. 5.[51]  Effect of registration. – The labor organization or worker’s association shall be deemed registered and vested with legal personality on the date of issuance of its certificate of registration.  Such legal personality cannot thereafter be subject to collateral attack but may be questioned only in an independent petition for cancellation in accordance with these Rules.

Hence, to raise the issue of the respondent union’s legal personality is not proper in this case.  The pronouncement of the Labor Relations Division Chief, that the respondent union acquired a legal personality x x x cannot be challenged in a petition for certification election.

The discussion of the Secretary of Labor and Employment on this point is also enlightening, thus:

. . . Section 5, Rule V of D.O. 9 is instructive on the matter.  It provides that the legal personality of a union cannot be the subject of collateral attack in a petition for certification election, but may be questioned only in an independent petition for cancellation of union registration.  This has been the rule since NUBE v. Minister of Labor, 110 SCRA 274 (1981).  What applies in this case is the principle that once a union acquires a legitimate status as a labor organization, it continues as such until its certificate of registration is cancelled or revoked in an independent action for cancellation.

Equally important is Section 11, Paragraph II, Rule IX of D.O. 9, which provides for the dismissal of a petition for certification election based on the lack of legal personality of a labor organization only in the following instances: (1) appellant is not listed by the Regional Office or the BLR in its registry of legitimate labor organizations; or (2) appellant’s legal personality has been revoked or cancelled with finality.  Since appellant is listed in the registry of legitimate labor organizations, and its legitimacy has not been revoked or cancelled with finality, the granting of its petition for certification election is proper.[52]

“[T]he legal personality of a legitimate labor organization x x x cannot be subject to a collateral attack.  The law is very clear on this matter. x x x The Implementing Rules stipulate that a labor organization shall be deemed registered and vested with legal personality on the date of issuance of its certificate of registration.  Once a certificate of registration is issued to a union, its legal personality cannot be subject to a collateral attack.  In may be questioned only in an independent petition for cancellation in accordance with Section 5 of Rule V, Book V of the Implementing Rules.”[53]

We agree with the ruling of the Office of the Secretary of DOLE that the legitimacy of the legal personality of KML cannot be collaterally attacked in a petition for certification election proceeding.  This is in consonance with our ruling in Laguna Autoparts Manufacturing Corporation v. Office of the Secretary, Department of Labor and Employment[49] that “such legal personality may not be subject to a collateral attack but only through a separate action instituted particularly for the purpose of assailing it.”[50]  We further held therein that:

This is categorically prescribed by Section 5, Rule V of the Implementing Rules of Book V, which states as follows:

SEC. 5.[51]  Effect of registration. – The labor organization or worker’s association shall be deemed registered and vested with legal personality on the date of issuance of its certificate of registration.  Such legal personality cannot thereafter be subject to collateral attack but may be questioned only in an independent petition for cancellation in accordance with these Rules.

Hence, to raise the issue of the respondent union’s legal personality is not proper in this case.  The pronouncement of the Labor Relations Division Chief, that the respondent union acquired a legal personality x x x cannot be challenged in a petition for certification election.

The discussion of the Secretary of Labor and Employment on this point is also enlightening, thus:

. . . Section 5, Rule V of D.O. 9 is instructive on the matter.  It provides that the legal personality of a union cannot be the subject of collateral attack in a petition for certification election, but may be questioned only in an independent petition for cancellation of union registration.  This has been the rule since NUBE v. Minister of Labor, 110 SCRA 274 (1981).  What applies in this case is the principle that once a union acquires a legitimate status as a labor organization, it continues as such until its certificate of registration is cancelled or revoked in an independent action for cancellation.

Equally important is Section 11, Paragraph II, Rule IX of D.O. 9, which provides for the dismissal of a petition for certification election based on the lack of legal personality of a labor organization only in the following instances: (1) appellant is not listed by the Regional Office or the BLR in its registry of legitimate labor organizations; or (2) appellant’s legal personality has been revoked or cancelled with finality.  Since appellant is listed in the registry of legitimate labor organizations, and its legitimacy has not been revoked or cancelled with finality, the granting of its petition for certification election is proper.[52]

“[T]he legal personality of a legitimate labor organization x x x cannot be subject to a collateral attack.  The law is very clear on this matter. x x x The Implementing Rules stipulate that a labor organization shall be deemed registered and vested with legal personality on the date of issuance of its certificate of registration.  Once a certificate of registration is issued to a union, its legal personality cannot be subject to a collateral attack.  In may be questioned only in an independent petition for cancellation in accordance with Section 5 of Rule V, Book V of the Implementing Rules.”[53]

http://sc.judiciary.gov.ph/jurisprudence/2011/february2011/169754.htm

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About Erineus

Born on December 28, 1965, Surallah, South Cotabato, Southern Mindanao, Philippines.
This entry was posted in Labor Law, Labor Union and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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