CASE 2014-0060: BAHIA SHIPPING SERVICES, INC., FRED OLSEN CRUISE LINE, AND MS. CYNTHIA C. MENDOZA, PETITIONERS, -VERSUS – JOEL P. HIPE, JR., RESPONDENT (G.R. NO. 204699, 12 NOV 2014, PERLAS-BERNABE, J.) BRIEF TITLE: BAHIA SHIPPING ET AL VS. HIPE.

 

DISPOSITIVE:

 

“WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED. The Decision dated May 2, 2012 and the Resolution dated December 3, 2012 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 115888 are hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Respondent Joel P. Hipe, Jr. ‘s claim for disability benefits is DENIED.

 

SO ORDERED “

 

SUBJECTS/DOCTRINES/DIGESTS:

 

WHAT IS THE NATURE OF CERTIORARI?

 

IT IS AN EXTRAORDINARY REMEDY?

 

WHEN DOES SUCH REMEDY OF CERTIORARI APPLIES?

 

WHEN THE COURT OR QUASI-JUDICIAL AUTHORITY GRAVELY ABUSED THE DISCRETION CONFERRED UPON IT.

 

WHAT IS MEANT BY GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION?

 

IT CONNOTES A CAPRICIOUS AND WHIMSICAL EXERCISE OF JUDGMENT, DONE IN A DESPOTIC MANNER BY REASON OF PASSION OR PERSONAL HOSTILITY, THE CHARACTER OF WHICH BEING SO PATENT AND GROSS AS TO AMOUNT TO AN EVASION OF POSITIVE DUTY OR TO A VIRTUAL REFUSAL TO PERFORM THE DUTY ENJOINED BY OR TO ACT ALL IN CONTEMPLATION OF LAW.

 

 

“To justify the grant of the extraordinary remedy of certiorari, the petitioner must satisfactorily show that the court or quasi-judicial authority gravely abused the discretion conferred upon it. Grave abuse of discretion connotes a capricious and whimsical exercise of judgment, done in a despotic manner by reason of passion or personal hostility, the character of which being so patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of positive duty or to a virtual refusal to perform the duty enjoined by or to act all in contemplation of law.”

 

IN LABOR CASES WHEN IS THERE GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION?

 

WHEN NLRC’S FINDINGS ARE NOT SUPPORTED  BY SUBSTANTIAL EVIDENCE,65 OR THAT AMOUNT OF RELEVANT EVIDENCE WHICH A REASONABLE MIND MIGHT ACCEPT AS ADEQUATE TO JUSTIFY A CONCLUSION.

 

“In labor disputes, grave abuse of discretion may be ascribed to the NLRC when, inter alia, its findings and conclusions are not supported by substantial evidence,65 or that amount of relevant evidence which a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to justify a conclusion.66 The onus probandi falls on the seafarer to establish his claim for disability benefits by the requisite quantum of evidence to justify the grant of relief.”

 

……………………………………………..

 

THE PHYSICIAN OF SEAFARER HIPE CERTIFIED THAT HIPE SUFFERS FROM PERMANENT DISABILITY. HIS COMPANY’S PHYSICIAN CERTIFIED THAT HIPE IS FIT TO WORK. IS HIPE ENTITLED TO PERMANENT DISABILITY BENEFIT?

 

NO. HE DID NOT AVAIL OF THE CONFLICT-RESOLUTION PROCEDURE UNDER THE POEA-SEC AND CBA. IT CALLS FOR THE APPOINTMENT OF A THIRD PARTY DOCTOR TO DECIDE AND WHOSE DECISION SHALL BE BINDING. IF THERE IS NO THIRD PARTY DOCTOR, THEN THE FINDINGS OF THE COMPANY PHYSICIAN PREVAILS.

 

“Whatever his reasons might have been, [the seafarer’s] disregard of the conflict-resolution procedure under the POEA-SEC and the CBA cannot and should not be tolerated and allowed to stand, lest it encourage a similar defiance. x x x The third-doctor-referral provision of the POEA- SEC, it appears to us, has been honored more in the breach than in the compliance. This is unfortunate considering that the provision is intended to settle disability claims voluntarily at the parties’ level where the claims can be resolved more speedily than if they were brought to court.

 

Given the circumstances under which [the seafarer] pursued his claim, especially the fact that he caused the non-referral to a third doctor, [the company doctor’s] fit-to-work certification must be upheld. In Santiago v. Pacbasin Ship Management, Inc., the Court declared: “[t]here was no agreement on a third doctor who shall examine him anew and whose finding shall be final and binding. x x x”

 

 

TO READ THE DECISION, JUST CLICK/DOWNLOAD THE FILE BELOW.

 

 

 

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