Rivera v Genesis Transport Service, Inc.

G.R. No. 215568, August 03, 2015

FACTS:

Rivera was employed by respondent Genesis Transport Service, Inc. (Genesis) as a bus conductor. Rivera was dismissed by Genesis on account of a discrepancy in the amount he declared on bus ticket receipts. He received a Memorandum giving him twenty-four (24) hours to explain why he should not be sanctioned for reporting and remitting the amount of P198.00 instead of the admittedly correct amount of P394.00 worth of bus ticket receipts. He responded that it was an honest mistake, which he was unable to correct “because the bus encountered mechanical problems. (P196 difference)

Rivera filed a complaint of illegal dismissal contending termination was arbitrary and not based on just causes for terminating employment.

The respondent claimed that Rivera’s misdeclaration of the amount in the bus ticket receipts and failure to remit the correct amount clearly violated Genesis’ policies and amounted to serious misconduct, fraud, and willful breach of trust; thereby justifying his dismissal

The LA dismissed the complaint of Rivera and gave credence on respondent’s claim. The National Labor Relations Commission affirmed the Decision. The Court of Appeals sustained the rulings of LA.

ISSUE:

WON Rivera’s employment was terminated for just cause by respondent Genesis Transport Service, Inc.

HELD:

No. What is involve is a paltry amount of P196.00. All that has been proven is the existence of a discrepancy. No proof has been adduced of ill motive or even of gross negligence. The error in a single ticket issued by petitioner can hardly be used to justify the inference that he has committed serious misconduct or has acted in a manner that runs afoul of his employer’s trust.

The social justice suppositions underlying labor laws require that the statutory grounds justifying termination of employment should not be read to justify the view that bus conductors should, in all cases, be free from any kind of error. Not every improper act should be taken to justify the termination of employment.

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