Wednesday, June 17, 2009

My Guide To BP 22



Long ago, in a far away place called the Philippines, the Supreme Court noticed that they are being made collectors of lenders thereby clogging the courts. To remedy, they decided to implement the following rules and procedures:

1.Umutang ka ,covered by PDCs at hinde makabayaq?

Filing for violation of BP 22 is now deemed to necessarily include the
corresponding civil action. Therefore, complainant must pay filing fees.

Failure to pay the same within 10 days, the case shall be archived;
After the lapse of two months the records of the case shall be disposed of.

2.Criminal actions for violation of BP 22 were also included among
those offenses where the civil aspect may be the subject of
mediation.

Thus :

IV Rules on Summary Procedures

Sec. 16. Arrest of accused. — The court shall not order the arrest of
the accused except for failure to appear whenever required. Release
of the person arrested shall either be on bail or on recognizance by a
responsible citizen acceptable to the court.

VI. Bail Bond Requirement

P 2,000.00 for the first P40,000.00 face value of the check;
plus P1,000.00 for every P10,000.00 in excess of P40,000.00 ;
but bail shall not exceed P30,000.00

3.Issued Administrative Circular No. 12-2000, later on clarified by
A.M. No. 00-11-01-SC dated February 13, 2001 that :

the intention of this circular was not to remove imprisonment as
an alternative penalty, but to lay down a rule of preference
in the application of the penalties provided for in B.P. Blg. 22:

(a) imprisonment only;
(b) fine only; OR
(c) both.

V Penalty under BP 22:

30 days to 1 year imprisonment and/or
fine of not more than double the amount of the check
but not exceeding P200,000.00

However, judges now rarely impose imprisonment as a penalty.

In the event of imprisonment:

VII Presidential Decree No. 968 dated July 24, 1976

Section 4. Grant of Probation.
The court may, after it shall have convicted and sentenced a
defendant and upon application at any time of said defendant,
suspend the execution of said sentence and place the
defendant on probation for such period and upon such terms
and conditions as it may deem best.

RULINGS:

In G.R. No. 138669 dated June 6, 2002 the Supreme Court has this to say:

Nevertheless, while we recognize the noble objective of B.P.22, we
deem it proper to consider the underlying circumstances of the
case such that if the situation calls for the imposition of the
alternative penalty of fine rather than imprisonment, the courts
should not hesitate to do so.


On the 1999 decision of the Supreme Court in King vs. People of the Philippines (G.R. No. 131540), PANGANIBAN, J. wrote:

Under Batas Pambansa Blg. 22 (BP 22), the prosecution must prove not only that the:
1.accused issued a check that was subsequently dishonored.
2.It must also establish that the accused was actually notified that the check was dishonored, and
3.that he or she failed, within five banking days from receipt of the notice, to pay the holder of the check the amount due thereon or to make arrangement for its payment.
Absent proof that the accused received such notice, a prosecution for violation of the Bouncing Checks Law cannot prosper.

“True, complainant sent petitioner a registered mail,.. but the records show that petitioner did not receive it . .”

However, in the 2005 case of Yulo vs. People of the Philippines (G.R. 142762),the Supreme Court seemed to have disregarded this “notice” requirement, perhaps, since it also considered the underlying circumstances of this particular case.

Thus, Jaromay Laurente Pamaos Law Office opined that:
“ In other words, at this stage, both sides could logically argue either way.”

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