2014 (Political Law) Bar Exam Questions: Question 18

[Answer/discuss the question below. Or see 2014 bar exam Political Law Instructions; 2014 Political Law Questions: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30; See also 2014 Bar Exam: Information, Discussions, Tips, Questions and Results]


The National Building Code and its implementing rules provide, inter alia, that operators of shopping centers and malls should provide parking and loading spaces, in accordance with a prescribed ratio. The Solicitor General, heeding the call of the public for the provision of free parking spaces in malls, filed a case to compel said business concerns to discontinue their practice of collecting parking fees. The mall owners and operators oppose, saying that this is an invalid taking of their property, thus a violation of due process. The Solicitor General justifies it, however, claiming that it is a valid exercise of police power. Could the mall owners and operators be validly compelled to provide free parking to their customers? (4%)


  1. Not a valid exercise of police power. Regulation of parking fees in mall – the power to regulate does not include the power to confiscate. The means for tge attainment of the purpose is unlawful or oppressive.

    18 September 2009

  2. The mall owners and operators cannot be validly compelled to provide free parking for their customers.

    It is settled in the case of OSG vs. Ayala Land, Inc, that the Building Code and its IRR do not impose that parking space shall be provided by the mall owners free of charge. Such obligation is absent for there has no directive, positively giving import to an obligation.

    Art. 1158 of the Civil Code clearly points out that ” Obligations derived from law are not presumed.xxx”. Thus, the Building Code and its IRR do not impose any obligation for such provision of a free parking space.

    In light of the foregoing, the Supreme Court held that to compel the owners and mall operators to provide free parking space for either clients or non-clients can be considered as unlawful taking of property right without just compensation.

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