2016 (Labor Law) Bar Exam Questions: Question 9

[Answer/discuss the question below, or see 2016 bar exam Labor Law Instructions; 2016 Labor Law Questions: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 810, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, and 20; See also 2016 Bar Exam: Information, Discussions, Tips, Questions and Results]

-IX-

Zienna Corporation (Zienna) informed the Department of Labor and Employment Regional Director of the end of its operations. To carry out the cessation, Zienna sent a Letter Request for Intervention to the NLRC for permission and guidance in effecting payment of separation benefits for its fifty (50) terminated employees.

Each of the terminated employees executed a Quitclaim and Release before Labor Arbiter Nocomora, to whom the case was assigned. After the erstwhile employees received their separation pay, the Labor Arbiter declared the labor dispute dismissed with prejudice on the ground of settlement. Thereafter, Zienna sold all of its assets to Zandra Company (Zandra), which in tum hired its own employees.

Nelle, one of the fifty (50) terminated employees, filed a case for illegal dismissal against Zienna. She argued that Zienna did not cease from operating since the corporation subsists as Zandra. Nelle pointed out that aside from the two companies having essentially the same equipment, the managers and owners of Zandra and Zienna are likewise one and the same.

For its part, Zienna countered that Nelle is barred from filing a complaint for illegal dismissal against the corporation in view of her prior acceptance of separation pay.

Is Nelle correct in claiming that she was illegally dismissed? (5%)

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