BOOK FIVE – LABOR RELATIONS
Title II – NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION
Chapter I – CREATION AND COMPOSITION
Art. 213. National Labor Relations Commission. There shall be a National Labor Relations Commission which shall be attached to the Department of Labor and Employment for program and policy coordination only, composed of a Chairman and fourteen (14) Members.
Five (5) members each shall be chosen from among the nominees of the workers and employers organizations, respectively. The Chairman and the four (4) remaining members shall come from the public sector, with the latter to be chosen from among the recommendees of the Secretary of Labor and Employment.
Upon assumption into office, the members nominated by the workers and employers organizations shall divest themselves of any affiliation with or interest in the federation or association to which they belong.
The Commission may sit en banc or in five (5) divisions, each composed of three (3) members. Subject to the penultimate sentence of this paragraph, the Commission shall sit en banc only for purposes of promulgating rules and regulations governing the hearing and disposition of cases before any of its divisions and regional branches, and formulating policies affecting its administration and operations. The Commission shall exercise its adjudicatory and all other powers, functions, and duties through its divisions. Of the five (5) divisions, the first, second and third divisions shall handle cases coming from the National Capital Region and the parts of Luzon; and the fourth and fifth divisions, cases from the Visayas and Mindanao, respectively; Provided that the Commission sitting en banc may, on temporary or emergency basis, allow cases within the jurisdiction of any division to be heard and decided by any other division whose docket allows the additional workload and such transfer will not expose litigants to unnecessary additional expense. The divisions of the Commission shall have exclusive appellate jurisdiction over cases within their respective territorial jurisdictions. [As amended by Republic Act No. 7700].
The concurrence of two (2) Commissioners of a division shall be necessary for the pronouncement of judgment or resolution. Whenever the required membership in a division is not complete and the concurrence of two (2) commissioners to arrive at a judgment or resolution cannot be obtained, the Chairman shall designate such number of additional Commissioners from the other divisions as may be necessary.
The conclusions of a division on any case submitted to it for decision shall be reached in consultation before the case is assigned to a member for the writing of the opinion. It shall be mandatory for the division to meet for purposes of the consultation ordained herein. A certification to this effect signed by the Presiding Commissioner of the division shall be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case and served upon the parties.
The Chairman shall be the Presiding Commissioner of the first division and the four (4) other members from the public sector shall be the Presiding Commissioners of the second, third, fourth and fifth divisions, respectively. In case of the effective absence or incapacity of the Chairman, the Presiding Commissioner of the second division shall be the Acting Chairman.
The Chairman, aided by the Executive Clerk of the Commission, shall have administrative supervision over the Commission and its regional branches and all its personnel, including the Executive Labor Arbiters and Labor Arbiters.
The Commission, when sitting en banc shall be assisted by the same Executive Clerk and, when acting thru its Divisions, by said Executive Clerks for the second, third, fourth and fifth Divisions, respectively, in the performance of such similar or equivalent functions and duties as are discharged by the Clerk of Court and Deputy Clerks of Court of the Court of Appeals. (As amended by Section 5, Republic Act No. 6715, March 21, 1989)
Art. 214. Headquarters, Branches and Provincial Extension Units. The Commission and its First, Second and Third divisions shall have their main offices in Metropolitan Manila, and the Fourth and Fifth divisions in the Cities of Cebu and Cagayan de Oro, respectively. The Commission shall establish as many regional branches as there are regional offices of the Department of Labor and Employment, sub-regional branches or provincial extension units. There shall be as many Labor Arbiters as may be necessary for the effective and efficient operation of the Commission. Each regional branch shall be headed by an Executive Labor Arbiter. (As amended by Section 6, Republic Act No. 6715, March 21, 1989)
Art. 215. Appointment and Qualifications. The Chairman and other Commissioners shall be members of the Philippine Bar and must have engaged in the practice of law in the Philippines for at least fifteen (15) years, with at least five (5) years experience or exposure in the field of labor-management relations, and shall preferably be residents of the region where they are to hold office. The Executive Labor Arbiters and Labor Arbiters shall likewise be members of the Philippine Bar and must have been engaged in the practice of law in the Philippines for at least seven (7) years, with at least three (3) years experience or exposure in the field of labor-management relations: Provided, However, that incumbent Executive Labor Arbiters and Labor Arbiters who have been engaged in the practice of law for at least five (5) years may be considered as already qualified for purposes of reappointment as such under this Act. The Chairman and the other Commissioners, the Executive Labor Arbiters and Labor Arbiters shall hold office during good behavior until they reach the age of sixty-five years, unless sooner removed for cause as provided by law or become incapacitated to discharge the duties of their office.
The Chairman, the division Presiding Commissioners and other Commissioners shall be appointed by the President, subject to confirmation by the Commission on Appointments. Appointment to any vacancy shall come from the nominees of the sector which nominated the predecessor. The Executive Labor Arbiters and Labor Arbiters shall also be appointed by the President, upon recommendation of the Secretary of Labor and Employment and shall be subject to the Civil Service Law, rules and regulations.
The Secretary of Labor and Employment shall, in consultation with the Chairman of the Commission, appoint the staff and employees of the Commission and its regional branches as the needs of the service may require, subject to the Civil Service Law, rules and regulations, and upgrade their current salaries, benefits and other emoluments in accordance with law. (As amended by Section 7, Republic Act No. 6715, March 21, 1989)
Art. 216. Salaries, benefits and other emoluments. The Chairman and members of the Commission shall receive an annual salary at least equivalent to, and be entitled to the same allowances and benefits as those of the Presiding Justice and Associate Justices of the Court of Appeals, respectively. The Executive Labor Arbiters shall receive an annual salary at least equivalent to that of an Assistant Regional Director of the Department of Labor and Employment and shall be entitled to the same allowances and benefits as that of a Regional Director of said Department. The Labor Arbiters shall receive an annual salary at least equivalent to, and be entitled to the same allowances and benefits as that of an Assistant Regional Director of the Department of Labor and Employment. In no case, however, shall the provision of this Article result in the diminution of existing salaries, allowances and benefits of the aforementioned officials. (As amended by Section 8, Republic Act No. 6715, March 21, 1989)