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5/23/2018 DigestsLegalEthics-slidepdf.


Canon 16
Daniel Lemoine, complainant vs. Atty. Amadeo Balon Jr.
Failure to give proceeds to client
  Complaint against Atty. Amadeo Balon Jr. for estafa and misconduct before the Integrated Bar of the Philippines. The c
was referred to the Comission on Bar discipline
  Respondent rendered services to complainant with regards car insurance claim with the Metropolitan Insurance. In relatio

this, respondent advised the complainant of his legal service charge

  25%of actual amount to be recovered
   Advance of 50k
  1k –  appearance and conference fee
   And other legal expenses
  Before the complainant left for France, he signed a special power of attorney authorizing respondent to take legal act
against Metropolitan Insurance. This was issued at the same date when Metropolitan Insurance issued a check to se
complainant s claim.
  This however was without the knowledge of the complainant and thus upon knowing, he demanded the respondent to
over the proceeds
  Respondent acknowledged having possession of the money but insists on not returning it unless the attorney’s fees are b
  Complainant decried the continued possession of the respondent of the proceeds. In his counter-claim, respondent m
mention that what he did was lawful highlighting the time, effort and other expenses incurred while pursuing complaina
  The investigation committee found respondent guilty of misconduct and recommended that he be disbarred as well a
directly turn over the insurance claim of complainant
   A motion for reconsideration was file but the court concurred with the findings of IBP (violations refer to full text)
to the client’s cause
 A lawyer who practices or utilizes deceit in his dealings not only violates his duty of fidelity, loyalty and devotion
also degrades himself and besmirches the fair name of the honorable profession

In case of disagreement in payment fees, a lawyer must file appropriate actions in the proper court and should not arbitrarily apply
funds which are in his possession

In the case at bar, respondent stubbornly and in bad faith held on to complainant’s funds in order to push him to agree to the char

Thus, Atty Amadeo E. Balon is disbarred and ordered within 30 days to return the amount of 525,000.00

Flaviano Pelmoka vs. Judge Felix Diaz Jr.

Flaviano Pelmoka filed charges of serious misconduct against Judge Felix Diaz Jr., Facundo T. Bau tista and Inocencio B. Garampil.

The charge against Judge Diaz is for gross ignorance of the law and judicial proceedings due to his failure to protect the complaina
charging lien as one of the lawyers who intervened in a former civil case
-   A case for partition and reconveyance 1/6

It was ascertained that the case could be decided without resorting to a formal hearing

Judge due to failure to protect complainant’s charging lien is reprimanded 

Unity Development Corporation vs Atty. Danilo G. Macalino

Complaint for disbarment against Atty. Danilo Macalino for having violated Canon 16

  Macalino became the counsel of petitioner due to its merging with Frabal Fishing and Plant Corporation which during that t
was in dispute with Wheels Distributor
  Respondent advised petitioner to sever all contracts with Wheels to eventually terminate contract of lease between part
The 50000 guarantee deposit was also asked to be returned to Wheels Inc
  The suit finally ended through an amicable settlement after 7 years. However, respondent was no longer the petition
counsel inhere
  It was then when Petitioner knew that the 50000 never reaches Wheels. As a result, they wrote a letter to respondent ask
him to explain such misconduct where there was no reply

  The court required the respondent to comment on the complaint yet after three extensions, still there was no response f
  The case was then referred to the Integrated Bar of the Philippines for investigation and recommendation. During the for
investigation, the same attitude was being exhibited by the respondent lawyer where a series of extension and re-hear
were being done amounting to 6 motions for extensions. But despite this, there was no reply/answer
  On account of the foregoing, the investigating commissioner submitted his report stating that:
o There was no denial that there was a misappropriation of funds for personal use. The respondent was made to re
yet he never submitted a response
Recommendation: suspension of 2 years and payment of the amount of 50000 with a warning that a similar offe
shall be handled with a more severe penalty
  IBP Board of governors adapted the recommendation with modifications: 1 year instead of 2 years
The relationship between a lawyer and a client is highly fiduciary; it requires a high degree of fidelity and good faith. It is designed
remove all such temptation and to prevent everything of that kind from being done for the protection of the client"
Respondent's failure to rebut complainant's evidence clearly reveals his failure to live up to his duties as a lawyer in consonance w
the lawyer's oath and the Code of Professional Responsibility. His repeated failure without any valid reason to comply with t he orde
the Court requiring him to comment on the complaint lends credence to the allegations thereof and manifests his tacit admission of

Respondent's wanton failure to make an accounting and to return to his client the amount entrusted to him upon demand give rise
the presumption that he misappropriated it, in violation of the trust and confidence reposed on him. His act of holding o
complainant's money without its acquiescence is conduct indicative of lack of integrity and propriety. A lawyer, under his oath, pled
himself not to delay any man for money and is bound to conduct himself with all good fidelity to his client.
It is clear, therefore, that respondent, by depositing the check in his own account and subsequently deceiving his client into believ
that he delivered the same to Wheels is undoubtedly guilty of deceit, malpractice, gross misconduct and unethical behavior. He cau
dishonor, not merely to himself but to the noble profession to which he belongs
respondent's repeated failures to comply with the orders of the Court requiring him to comment on the complaint indicate a high deg
of irresponsibility on his part. THUS SUSPENDED FOR 1 YEAR, TO PAY 50000 WITHIN 10 DAYS UPON RECEIPT 2/6

Rosario Junio vs. Atty. Salvador Grupo

Complaint for disbarment filed against Atty. Salvador Grupo for malpractice and gross misconduct
  Complainant alleged that she engaged the services of Grupo to recover a parcel of land titled after the parents of
  She gave 25000 php to Grupo to be used in the redemption of the property. Respondent however did not redeem the prop
which resulted to the lost of the right of redemption. As a result, petitioner demanded the return of the money. Howev

respondent continually refused to refund the money entrusted to him and even said that petitioner was informed that
property can no longer be redeemed and that she lent him the money. This was denied by Junio
  The case was referred to IBP where it was postponed due to the respondent as well as failure to reply with required c
  Investigating commissioner recommended that the respondent be reprimanded and be ordered to pay the 25k with interest
  IBP Board of Governors however ordered the indefinite suspension of respondent and payment of the 25k with 1 year inter
  Respondent filed a motion for reconsideration asking that the former be adopted. This was taken as petition for review
Thus, the respondent concluded that there was, strictly speaking, no attorney-client [relationship] existing between them. Rather, r
from the start[,] everything was sort of personal. Granting, it was assumed that there was in reality a loan in the amount of P25,000.0
Respondent's liability is thus not for misappropriation or embezzlement but for violation of Rule 16.04 of the Code of Professio
Responsibility which forbids lawyers from borrowing money from their clients unless the latter's interests are protected by the natur
the case or by independent advice. In this case, respondent's liability is compounded by the fact that not only did he not give
security for the payment of the amount loaned to him but that he has also refused to pay the said amount. His claim that he could
pay the loan "because circumstances . . . did not allow it" and that, because of the passage of time, "he somehow forgot about
obligation" only underscores his blatant disregard of his obligation which reflects on his honesty and candor. A lawyer is bound
observe candor, fairness, and loyalty in all his dealings and transactions with his client.
WHEREFORE, the Court finds petitioner guilty of violation of Rule 16.04 of the Code of Professional Responsibility and orders
suspended from the practice of law for a period of one 1) month and to pay to complainant within 30 days from notice, the amoun

P25,000.00 with interest at the legal rate.

Reyes vs. Vitan

 A lawyer shall serve his client with competence and diligence and must not neglect a legal matter entrusted to him. He must n ot d
no man for money or malice; and conduct himself in proper manner to his fourfold duties.

 Administrative complaint for disbarment filed by Reyes against Atty Vitan for gross negligence

  Vitan is the counsel hired by complainant for services against his sister and law and niece in their refusal to abide with
decision of RTC Branch 32
  Case was referred to the IBP where respondent failed to file his answer and it was only his secretary that represents
during proceedings
  Upon receipt of payment by his client (complainant), he was expected to perform his duties towards his client
  IBP’s report and recommendation 
o  Respondent ignored all orders and neither did he comply with it
o  He failed to submit responsive pleadings requested in his motions 3/6

  There was no proof of being sent

  The RTC branch and civil case and was left blank
  IBP recommends suspension for 2 years + refund of 17,000 to the complainants. This was adopted by the court

Nicanor Gonzales and Salud B. Pantasosas vs. Miguel Sabacajan (LAND TITLE)

 Administrative complaint against Atty. Miguel Sabacajan

  Petitioners were informed by the Registry of Deeds of Cagayan de Oro that their land title’s were entrusted to the responde
secretary who in turn entrusted it to the respondent
  The respondent admitted that the land titles are with him. However, when a demand by petitioners to recover said ti
respondent refused.
  The acts of which are considered a sign of arrogance taking advantage of his legal profession when he challenged s
petitioners to file a case in court
  The respondent in his answer to the court’s summon admitted that he met pantasosas but not Gonzales. He further de
that he challenged anyone to file a case in court.
  He stressed that he was never arrogant and that his holding of the title was on behalf of his client Mr. Uy of which he said
following petitioners have monetary obligation
  The case was referred to the Office of the Bar
The court finds that Atty. Sabacajan has admitted that he is in possession of the land titles yet he did not surrender the titles in s
demands. At the same time, there was a failure to prove that the holding and refusal to surrender the titles were legally justified.

The court finds that the respondent failed to exercise the good faith and the diligence required of lawyers in handling legal affairs of
clients. If the petitioners have monetary obligation to his clients, there was however no proof that the titles were given as collatera

payment of debt.

Canon 19, Rule 19.01 ordains that a lawyer shall employ only fair and honest means to attain the lawful objectives of his client and s
not present, participate in presenting, or threaten to present unfounded charges to obtain an improper advantage in any case

 Atty. Miguel Sabacajan is SUSPENDED until he has proven by certificate the receipt of petitioners of their respective land titles.

 Ana F. Retuya vs. Atty. Inego Gorduiz

Disbarment case linked to an administrative case filed by herein petitioner against Municipal Judge Equipilag
   Ana Retuya is a widow who filed a complaint for workmen’s compensation against Eastern Shipping Lines, the employer o
husband who died on 1968. A compromise claim which is half the original award was granted to Ana. In her receipt, attac
was a cover letter explaining that her lawyer Gorduiz refused to sign the joint motion to dismiss the claim because he wan
20% of the award. Ana was however willing to give him 10% 4/6

  Retuya was however surprised in 1973 when she was served a warrant of arrest for Estafa. She posted for bail wherein
then filed a motion to quash explaining that there was no payment since Gorduiz demanded 1/3 of the award where
bargained to 650 php.
  Retuya felt aggrieved which resulted to his filing of the case at bar seeking to disbar Gorduiz and Judge Equipilag. The c
was referred to the solicitor general and the court of first instance of southern leyte.
  The solicitor general asked the provincial fiscal of southern leyte to investigate on the case of Gorduiz. It was recommen
that the case be dismissed

  The solicitor general did not accept the recommendation, rather asked for the SUSPENSION FOR 6 MONTHS of Gorduiz
to his groundless suit against his client
  Gorduiz denied that he asked for payment higher than 300 php
Respondent acted precipitately in filing a criminal action against his client for the supposed misappropriation of his attorney's fees.
not altogether clear that his client had swindled him and, therefore, there is some basis for concluding that, contrary to his lawy
oath, he had filed a groundless suit against her and had harassed and embarrassed her.

Federico Ramos vs Atty. Patricio Ngaseo

Complaint for suspension of respondent Atty. Patricio A. Ngaseo for violation of the Code of Professional Responsibility and Art
1491 of the Civil Code by demanding from his client, complainant Federico N. Ramos, the delivery of 1,000 square meters of lan
litigated property, as payment for his appearance fees.
  complainant filed a complaint before the IBP charging his former counsel, respondent Atty. Ngaseo, of violation of the Cod
Professional Responsibility for demanding the delivery of 1,000 sq. m. parcel of land which was the subject of litigation
  IBP Commissioner Rebecca Villanueva-Maala found the respondent guilty of grave misconduct and conduct unbecoming
lawyer in violation of the Code of Professional Responsibility and recommended that he be suspended from the practice of
for 1 year
IBP Board of Governors modified the report changing the suspension into 6 months instead of 1 year
  Respondent filed a petition for review assailing IBP Resolution for having been issued without or in excess of jurisdiction.
also made mention that he can collect the unpaid appearance fee even without a written contract on the basis of the princ
of quantum meruit. He claims that his acceptance and appearance fees are reasonable because a Makati based le
practitioner, would not handle a case for an acceptance fee of only P20,000.00 and P1,000.00 per court appearance
the report of the IBP Commissioner, as adopted by the IBP Board of Governors in its Resolution No. XVI-2003-47, does not cle
specify which acts of the respondent constitute gross misconduct or what provisions of the Code of Professional Responsibility h
been violated. The recommended penalty of suspension for 6 months is too harsh and not proportionate to the offense committed
the respondent. The power to disbar or suspend must be exercised with great caution. Only in a clear case of misconduct that serio

affects the standing and character of the lawyer as an officer of the Court and member of the bar will disbarment or suspension
imposed as a penalty. All considered, a reprimand is deemed sufficient and reasonable.

WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, respondent Atty. Patricio A. Ngaseo is found guilty of conduct unbecoming a member of
legal profession in violation of Rule 20.04 of Canon 20 of the Code of Professional Responsibility. He is REPRIMANDED with a war
that repetition of the same act will be dealt with more severely 5/6

Benedicto Leviste vs. The Court of Appeals

Whether or not an attorney who was engaged on a contingent fee basis may in order to collect his fees, prosecute an appeal des
his client’s refusal to appeal decision in court 6/6