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  Administrative Code of the Philippines:

BOOK VII

ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURE 

Chapter 1

GENERAL PROVISIONS

 
    Sec. 1. Scope. - This Book shall be applicable to all agencies as defined in the next succeeding section, except the Congress, the Judiciary, the Constitutional Commissions, military establishments in all matters relating exclusively to Armed Forces personnel, the Board of Pardons and Parole, and state universities and colleges.

    Sec. 2. Definitions. - As used in this Book:

    (1) "Agency" includes any department, bureau, office, commission, authority or officer of the National Government authorized by law or executive order to make rules, issue licenses, grant rights or privileges, and adjudicate cases; research institutions with respect to licensing functions; government corporations with respect to functions regulating private right, privileges, occupation or business; and officials in the exercise of disciplinary power as provided by law.

    (2) "Rule" means any agency statement of general applicability that implements or interprets a law, fixes and describes the procedures in, or practice requirements of, an agency, including its regulations. The term includes memoranda or statements concerning the internal administration or management of an agency not affecting the rights of, or procedure available to, the public.

    (3) "Rate" means any charge to the public for a service open to all and upon the same terms, including individual or joint rates, tolls, classifications, or schedules thereof, as well as commutation, mileage, kilometerage and other special rates which shall be imposed by law or regulation to be observed and followed by any person.

    (4) "Rule making" means an agency process for the formulation, amendment, or repeal of a rule.

    (5) "Contested case" means any proceeding, including licensing, in which the legal rights, duties or privileges asserted by specific parties as required by the Constitution or by law are to be determined after hearing.

    (6) "Person" includes an individual, partnership, corporation, association, public or private organization of any character other than an agency.

    (7) "Party" includes a person or agency named or admitted as a party, or properly seeking and entitled as of right to be admitted as a party, in any agency proceeding; but nothing herein shall be construed to prevent an agency from admitting any person or agency as a party for limited purposes.

    (8) "Decision" means the whole or any part of the final disposition, not of an interlocutory character, whether affirmative, negative, or injunctive in form, of an agency in any matter, including licensing, rate fixing and granting of rights and privileges.

    (9) "Adjudication" means an agency process for the formulation of a final order.

    (10) "License" includes the whole or any part of any agency permit, certificate, passport, clearance, approval, registration, charter, membership, statutory exemption or other form of permission, or regulation of the exercise of a right or privilege.

    (11) "Licensing" includes agency process involving the grant, renewal, denial, revocation, suspension, annulment, withdrawal, limitation, amendment, modification or conditioning of a license.

    (12) "Sanction" includes the whole or part of a prohibition, limitation or other condition affecting the liberty of any person; the withholding of relief; the imposition of penalty or fine; the destruction, taking, seizure or withholding of property; the assessment of damages, reimbursement, restitution, compensation, cost, charges or fees; the revocation or suspension of license; or the taking of other compulsory or restrictive action.

    (13) "Relief" includes the whole or part of any grant of money, assistance, license, authority, privilege, exemption, exception, or remedy; recognition of any claim, right, immunity, privilege, exemption or exception; or taking of any action upon the application or petition of any person.

    (14) "Agency proceeding" means any agency process with respect to rule-making, adjudication and licensing.

    (15) "Agency action" includes the whole or part of every agency rule, order, license, sanction, relief or its equivalent or denial thereof.
 

Chapter 2

RULES AND REGULATIONS

 
    Sec. 3. Filing. - (1) Every agency shall file with the University of the Philippines Law Center three (3) certified copies of every rule adopted by it. Rules in force on the date of effectivity of this Code which are not filed within three (3) months from that date shall not thereafter be the basis of any sanction against any party or persons.

    (2) The records officer of the agency, or his equivalent functionary, shall carry out the requirements of this section under pain of disciplinary action.

    (3) A permanent register of all rules shall be kept by the issuing agency and shall be open to public inspection.

    Sec. 4. Effectivity. - In addition to other rule-making requirements provided by law not inconsistent with this Book, each rule shall become effective fifteen (15) days from the date of filing as above provided unless a different date is fixed by law, or specified in the rule in cases of imminent danger to public health, safety and welfare, the existence of which must be expressed in a statement accompanying the rule. The agency shall take appropriate measures to make emergency rules known to persons who may be affected by them.

    Sec. 5. Publication and Recording. - The University of the Philippines Law Center shall:

    (1) Publish a quarter bulletin setting forth the text of rules filed with it during the preceding quarter; and

    (2) Keep an up-to-date codification of all rules thus published and remaining in effect, together with a complete index and appropriate tables.

    Sec. 6. Omission of Some Rules. - (1) The University of the Philippines Law Center may omit from the bulletin or the codification any rule if its publication would be unduly cumbersome, expensive or otherwise inexpedient, but copies of that rule shall be made available on application to the agency which adopted it, and the bulletin shall contain a notice stating the general subject matter of the omitted rule and new copies thereof may be obtained.

    (2) Every rule establishing an offense or defining an act which, pursuant to law, is punishable as a crime or subject to a penalty shall in all cases be published in full text.

    Sec. 7. Distribution of Bulletin and Codified Rules. - The University of the Philippines Law Center shall furnish one (1) free copy each of every issue of the bulletin and of the codified rules or supplements to the Office of the President, Congress, all appellate courts and the National Library. The bulletin and the codified rules shall be made available free of charge to such public officers or agencies as the Congress may select, and to other persons at a price sufficient to cover publication and mailing or distribution costs.

    Sec. 8. Judicial Notice. - The court shall take judicial notice of the certified copy of each rule duly filed or as published in the bulletin or the codified rules.

    Sec. 9. Public Participation. - (1) If not otherwise required by law, an agency shall, as far as practicable, publish or circulate notices of proposed rules and afford interested parties the opportunity to submit their views prior to the adoption of any rule.

    (2) In the fixing of rates, no rule or final order shall be valid unless the proposed rates shall have been published in a newspaper of general circulation at least two (2) weeks before the first hearing thereon.

    (3) In case of opposition, the rules on contested cases shall be observed.
 

Chapter 3

ADJUDICATION

 
    Sec. 10. Compromise and Arbitration. - To expedite administrative proceedings involving conflicting rights or claims and obviate expensive litigations, every agency shall, in the public interest, encourage amicable settlement, comprise and arbitration.

    Sec. 11. Notice and Hearing in Contested Cases. - (1) In any contested case all parties shall be entitled to notice and hearing. The notice shall be served at least five (5) days before the date of the hearing and shall state the date, time and place of the hearing.

    (2) The parties shall be given opportunity to present evidence and argument on all issues. If not precluded by law, informal disposition may be made of any contested case by stipulation, agreed settlement or default.

    (3) The agency shall keep an official record of its proceedings.

    Sec. 12. Rules of Evidence. - In a contested case:

    (1) The agency may admit and give probative value to evidence commonly accepted by reasonably prudent men in the conduct of their affairs.

    (2) Documentary evidence may be received in the form of copies or excerpts, if the original is not readily available. Upon request, the parties shall be given opportunity to compare the copy with the original. If the original is in the official custody of a public officer, a certified copy thereof may be accepted.

    (3) Every party shall have the right to cross-examine witnesses presented against him and to submit rebuttal evidence.

    (4) The agency may take notice of judicially cognizable facts and of generally cognizable technical or scientific facts within its specialized knowledge. The parties shall be notified and afforded an opportunity to contest the facts so noticed.

    Sec. 13. Subpoena. - In any contested case, the agency shall have the power to require the attendance of witnesses or the production of books, papers, documents and other pertinent data, upon request of any party before or during the hearing upon showing of general relevance. Unless otherwise provided by law, the agency may, in case of disobedience, invoke the aid of the Regional Trial Court within whose jurisdiction the contested case being heard falls. The Court may punish contumacy or refusal as contempt.

    Sec. 14. Decision. - Every decision rendered by the agency in a contested case shall be in writing and shall state clearly and distinctly the facts and the law on which it is based. The agency shall decide each case within thirty (30) days following its submission. The parties shall be notified of the decision personally or by registered mail addressed to their counsel of record, if any, or to them.

    Sec. 15. Finality of Order. - The decision of the agency shall become final and executory fifteen (15) days after the receipt of a copy thereof by the party adversely affected unless within that period an administrative appeal or judicial review, if proper, has been perfected. One motion for reconsideration may be filed, which shall suspend the running of the said period.

    Sec. 16. Publication and Compilation of Decisions. - (1) Every agency shall publish and make available for public inspection all decisions or final orders in the adjudication of contested cases.

    (2) It shall be the duty of the records officer of the agency or his equivalent functionary to prepare a register or compilation of those decisions or final orders for use by the public.

    Sec. 17. Licensing Procedure. - (1) When the grant, renewal, denial or cancellation of a license is required to be preceded by notice and hearing, the provisions concerning contested cases shall apply insofar as practicable.

    (2) Except in cases of willful violation of pertinent laws, rules and regulations or when public security, health, or safety require otherwise, no license may be withdrawn, suspended, revoked or annulled without notice and hearing.

    Sec. 18. Non-expiration of License. - Where the licensee has made timely and sufficient application for the renewal of a license with reference to any activity of a continuing nature, the existing license shall not expire until the application shall have been finally determined by the agency.
 

Chapter 4

ADMINISTRATIVE APPEAL INCONTESTED CASES

 
    Sec. 19. Appeal. - Unless otherwise provided by law or executive order, an appeal form a final decision of the agency may be taken to the Department head.

    Sec. 20. Perfection of Administrative Appeals. - (1) Administrative appeals under this Chapter shall be perfected within fifteen (15) days after receipt of a copy of the decision complained of by the party adversely affected, by filing with the agency which adjudicated the case a notice of appeal, serving copies thereof upon the prevailing party and the appellate agency, and paying the required fees.

    (2) If a motion for reconsideration is denied, the movant shall have the right to perfect his appeal during the remainder of the period for appeal, reckoned from receipt of the resolution of denial. If the decision is reversed on reconsideration, the aggrieved party shall have fifteen (15) days from receipt of the resolution of reversal within which to perfect his appeal.

    (3) The agency shall, upon perfection of the appeal, transmit the records of the case to the appellate agency.

    Sec. 21. Effect of Appeal. - The appeal shall stay the decision appealed from unless otherwise provided by law, or the appellate agency directs execution pending appeal, as it may deem just, considering the nature and circumstance of the case.

    Sec. 22. Action on Appeal. - The appellate agency shall review the records of the proceedings and may, on its own initiative or upon motion, receive additional evidence.

    Sec. 23. Finality of Decision of Appellate Agency. - In any contested case, the decision of the appellate agency shall become final and executory fifteen (15) days after the receipt by the parties of a copy thereof.

    Sec. 24. Hearing Officers. - (1) Each agency shall have such number of qualified and competent members of the base as hearing officers as may be necessary for the hearing and adjudication of contested cases.

    (2) No hearing officer shall engaged in the performance of prosecuting functions in any contested case or any factually related case.

    Sec. 25. Judicial Review. - (1) Agency decisions shall be subject to judicial review in accordance with this chapter and applicable laws.

    (2) Any party aggrieved or adversely affected by an agency decision may seek judicial review.

    (3) The action for judicial review may be brought against the agency, or its officers, and all indispensable and necessary parties as defined in the Rules of Court.

    (4) Appeal from an agency decision shall be perfected by filing with the agency within fifteen (15) days from receipt of a copy thereof a notice of appeal, and with the reviewing court a petition for review of the order. Copies of the petition shall be served upon the agency and all parties of record. The petition shall contain a concise statement of the issues involved and the grounds relied upon for the review, and shall be accompanied with a true copy of the order appealed from, together with copies of such material portions of the records as are referred to therein and other supporting papers. The petition shall be under oath and shall how, by stating the specific material dates, that it was filed within the period fixed in this chapter.

    (5) The petition for review shall be perfected within fifteen (15) days from receipt of the final administrative decision. One (1) motion for reconsideration may be allowed. If the motion is denied, the movant shall perfect his appeal during the remaining period for appeal reckoned from receipt of the resolution of denial. It the decision is reversed on reconsideration, the appellant shall have fifteen (15) days from receipt of the resolution to perfect his appeal.

    (6) The review proceeding shall be filed in the court specified by statute or, in the absence thereof, in any court of competent jurisdiction in accordance with the provisions on venue of the Rules of Court.

    (7) Review shall be made on the basis of the record taken as a whole. The findings of fact of the agency when supported by substantial evidence shall be final except when specifically provided otherwise by law.

    Sec. 26. Transmittal of Record. - Within fifteen (15) days from the service of the petition for review, the agency shall transmit to the court the original or a certified copy of the entire records of the proceeding under review. The record to be transmitted may be abridged by agreement of all parties to the proceedings. The court may require or permit subsequent correction or additions to the record.
 

FINAL PROVISIONS

 
    Sec. 27. Repealing Clause. - All laws, decrees, orders, rules and regulations, or portions thereof, inconsistent with this Code are hereby repealed or modified accordingly.

    Sec. 28. Separability Clauses. - In the event that any of the provisions of this Code is declared unconstitutional, the validity of the other provisions shall not be affected by such declaration.

    Sec. 29. Effectivity. - This Code shall take effect one year after its publication in the Official Gazette.

    DONE in the City of Manila, this 25th day of July, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and eighty-seven.

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