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Carlos vs. CA, August 28, 2007
Petitioner Carlos is President of consolidated companies ABC Security and Honest Care Janitorial. Private respondents were employed by petitioners on varying years. In July 1993, private respondents filed a Joint/Consolidated Complaint-Affidavit against petitioners for payment of minimum wage and other money claims. A day after petitioners received the corresponding summons, private respondents were allegedly relieved from their posts and were not given new assignments.
Petitioners averred that the private respondents were not dismissed but voluntarily resigned proven by their signed resignation letters. The Labor Arbiter dismissed the complaint for illegal dismissal. On appeal, the NLRC reversed and declared that there was illegal dismissal. The CA affirmed in toto the NLRC decision.
Whether private respondents were illegally dismissed and if so, should be granted back wages during the pendency of the case.
Yes, the alleged resignation letters of private respondents were inconsistent with their filing of the complaint for illegal dismissal.
An employee who is unjustly dismissed from work shall be entitled to reinstatement without loss of seniority rights and other privileges and to full back wages and to other benefits or their monetary equivalents computed from the time compensation was withheld up to the time of actual reinstatement.
The grant of back wages allows the unjustly and illegally dismissed employee to recover from the employer that which the former lost by way of wages as a result of his dismissal from employment. However, due to strained relations where reinstatement is no longer feasible, separation pay shall be granted. Back wages shall be computed from the date of the private respondents’ dismissal up to the finality of the judgment.
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