Maranaw Hotels and Resort Corp. vs Court of Appeals et al

July 16, 2012

Corporations must authorize lawyer to sign for and in behalf of the corporation 

In 1955, Sheryl Oabel began working with Maranaw Hotels in one of the latter’s hotel branches. In 1996, Maranaw Hotels contracted the services of Manila Resource Development Corporation (MANRED), a manpower service provider. Maranaw Hotels transferred Oabel to MANRED. Oable later filed a petition for regularization against MANRED and MANRED thereafter dismissed her.

Oabel filed a labor case against Maranaw Hotels, MANRED intervened deporting itself as the real employer of Oabel. She lost in the labor arbiter but the NLRC reversed the decision of the arbiter. Maranaw Hotels appealed before the Court of Appeals but the latter court dismissed the petition because apparently Maranaw Hotels failed to append the board resolution authorizing their counsel to file said petition before the Court of Appeals. Maranaw Hotels filed a Motion for Reconsideration with an appended Certification of Non-Forum Shopping and board resolution but the CA denied the same.

ISSUE: Whether or not the Petition filed by Maranaw Hotels should prosper.

HELD: No. There is no substantial compliance in this case. The filing of a subsequent MFR appended by the Certification of Non-Forum Shopping and the board resolution did not cure the defect. It negates the very purpose for which the certification against forum shopping is required: to inform the Court of the pendency of any other case which may present similar issues and involve similar parties as the one before it. The requirement applies to both natural and juridical persons.

A lawyer acting for the corporation must be specifically authorized to sign pleadings for the corporation. Specific authorization could only come in the form of a board resolution issued by the Board of Directors that specifically authorizes the counsel to institute the petition and execute the certification, to make his actions binding on his principal, i.e., the corporation.


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