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This controversy is an offshoot of an illegal dismissal case filed by the respondent against the petitioners. In the Labor Arbiter’s decision, it recognized respondent’s right to receive form the petitioners back wages and separation pay. After the decision became final and executory, petitioner moved for the issuance of a writ of execution. Petitioner opposed and contended that their obligation had been satisfied by the release of the cash bond.
LA ruled that the cash bond posted by the petitioners was insufficient to satisfy their obligation. NLRC affirmed the LA. On appeal, the CA dismissed the petition
Whether the computation of respondent’s award of back wages and separation pay should be reckoned from the date when the Labor Arbiter rendered the decision in the main case?
No. The rule is, if the Labor Arbiter’s (LA’s) decision, which granted separation pay in lieu of reinstatement, is appealed by any party, the employer-employee relationship subsists and until such time when decision becomes final and executory, the employee is entitled to all the monetary awards awarded by the LA.
The finality of the decision cuts off the employment relationship and represents the final settlement of the rights and obligations of the parties against each other.
Here, respondent remained an employee of the petitioners pending her partial appeal. Her employment was only severed when this Court, in G.R. No. 200490, affirmed with finality the rulings of the CA and the labor tribunals declaring her right to separation pay instead of actual reinstatement. She is entitled to have her back wages and separation pay computed until 4 October 2012, the date when the judgment of this Court became final and executory.