G.R. No. 158693. November 17, 2004
Private respondent Riviera Home Improvements, Inc. is engaged in the business of selling and installing ornamental and construction materials. It employed petitioners Virgilio Agabon and Jenny Agabon as gypsum board and cornice installers on January 2, 19922 until February 23, 1999 when they were dismissed for abandonment of work.
Petitioners filed a complaint for illegal dismissal and payment of money claims. They asserted that they were dismissed because the private respondent refused to give them assignments unless they agreed to work on a “pakyaw” basis. They did not agree on this arrangement because it would mean losing benefits as Social Security System (SSS) members. They also claim that private respondent did not comply with the twin requirements of notice and hearing.
The private respondent maintained that petitioners were not dismissed but had abandoned their work. The petitioners are sent two letters to the last known addresses of the petitioners advising them to report for work. They also talk to Agabon by telephone to inform them of new assignment however did not report since they subcontracted for an installation work for another company.