Category Archives: Legal Misc

Faster Authentication of Documents under the Apostille Convention

One problem we encounter in law practice, including in cases for recognition of foreign divorce decrees, is the difficulty in securing authenticated copies of the divorce decree and related documents. Authentication of documents is a long and expensive process. Great news — the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) recently announced that the Philippines has acceded to the Apostille Convention eliminating steps in authenticating documents. This Convention will enter into force between the Philippines and other States Parties which have raised no objection to its accession on 14 May 2019. According to the DFA: Continue reading

Rule on Precautionary Hold Departure Order (A.M. No. 18-07-05-SC; full text)

[In a Resolution dated 7 August 2018, the Supreme Court En Banc approved the proposed Rule on Precautionary Hold Departure Order. It shall take effect within fifteen days following its publication in two newspapers of general circulation. Here’s the full text of the Rule on Precautionary Hold Departure Order (A.M. No. 18-07-05-SC).] Continue reading

Unclaimed Bar Diplomas for 1974 to 1999

The Supreme Court’s Office of the Bar Confidant announced, through a notice dated 12 April 2016, that lawyer’s diplomas for the years 1974-1999 can be claimed at the Office of the Bar Confidant. Those who cannot come personally may send an authorization letter, upon showing of a photocopy of the identification card of the lawyer concerned and that of the representative. Continue reading

Law Extending Validity of Philippine Passports to 10 Years (Republic Act No. 10928; full text)

(Today, 2 August 2017, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signed a new law, Republic Act No. 10928, extending the validity of Philippine passports from 5 years to 10 years. The full text of the law is reproduced below.)

Republic Act No. 10928

An Act Extending the Validity of Philippine Passports, Amending for the Purpose Section 10 of Republic Act No. 8239, Otherwise Known as the “Philippine Passport Act of 1996”, and for Other Purposes

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Balikbayan Boxes: What OFWs Must Know About Random or Arbitrary Physical Inspection

The sending of balikbayan boxes, especially during the Christmas season, by Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) is a normal phenomenon. Balikbayan Boxes, according to the Bureau of Customs, “are packages of personal effects and/or pasalubongs sent by Filipinos residing or working abroad to their families or relatives in the Philippines to enhance Philippine tradition and culture for the promotion and preservation of strong family ties through love and caring expressed in gift-giving.” Continue reading

Identity Theft: Notices or Demands from a Certain Atty. Frederick Pamaos or Atty. Federico Pamaos

I received reports that my name is being used in collection/harassment acts, as well as text/online scams. Allow me clarify that there’s only ONE person with the surname Pamaos listed in the Philippine Supreme Court’s Roll of Attorneys: FRED B. PAMAOS. In other words, there’s only one lawyer, practicing in the Philippines, with the surname Pamaos. There’s NO lawyer named Frederick Pamaos, Federico Pamaos or Frederico Pamaos. If someone claims to be Atty. Pamaos but uses a first name other than “Fred”, that person is a fake. If someone uses the name Fred B. Pamaos, please call our law office and verify if the notice/demand letter is legitimate. Please check our law firm’s website (pnl-law.com) for other contact details. Continue reading

MCLE Compliance in Entry of Appearance and Pleadings (Bar Matter No. 850)

[The Supreme Court issued a Resolution dated 17 February 2015 (full text below), which is effective 1 March 2015, requiring all counsels, including partners of law firms whose names appear in the said pleadings, to indicate their MCLE exemption or compliance number. Does this mean that if one signatory is non-compliant, even if the other co-signatories are MCLE compliant, the court can disregard/dismiss the pleading/motion?] Continue reading

Statement of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. A. Sereno on the recent Maguindanao Encounter

In the wake of the recent deaths in Mamasapano, Maguindanao involving officers and members of the Philippine National Police – Special Action Force and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, I and my colleagues on the Supreme Court express our deepest sympathy to the families and loved ones of our injured and fallen policemen. We deeply mourn for those killed, and weep with their families as we would weep for our own kin. No words are enough to console the families for their loss, perhaps even the promise of earthly justice will sound hollow at this time. But I ask them now to cling to the hope that there is always the eternal realm. Continue reading

Anti-Selfie Bill or Protection Against Personal Intrusion

News articles label a proposed law as “anti-selfie” bill. The label, however, is not accurate. The proposal currently pending at the House of Representatives does not prohibit selfies per se — it declares illegal the act of taking photos, among others, of other people for commercial purposes. But it can seriously collide with ubiquitous recording technology and can adversely affect growing sectors like citizen journalism, blogging and online social networks. It is, therefore, important to understand what others call the “anti-selfie” bill and what it seeks to prevent. Read the full text below and help us discuss the pros and cons of this proposed law (use the comment section below). Continue reading

Mind your Comma

Writing is not the easiest task among the many facets of law practice. I’ve never been a fan of grammar nazis, but I came to appreciate these misunderstood souls the moment I joined the legal profession, first as a litigator. Non-lawyers think that the bulk of a litigator’s work consists in personal appearances in court. Lawyers know that litigation is not only about courtroom drama. It is equally about how well lawyers present their arguments in written form. Continue reading