DOLE Department Order 213-2020
Labor Sec. Silvestre H. Bello III has issued Department Order (DO) 213, s. 2020 prescribing guidelines in the prescription of actions and the suspension of reglementary periods to file pleadings, motions, and other documents.
In the order, the prescriptive periods for the commencement of actions, claims, petitions, complaints, and other proceedings before the DOLE regional offices, bureaus, and the Office of the DOLE Secretary (OSEC) shall be interrupted from March 16, 2020 and shall begin to run when the enhanced community quarantine or the general community quarantine is lifted.
The submission of documents for new or renewal of application for certificate of registration under Department Order 174-17 is suspended during the community quarantine while for registration which expired or expires within the community quarantine, extension of filing is deemed granted after the lifting of the community quarantine for a period of 30 days.
DOLE DO 174-17 is a regulation that tightened elements of permissible contracting or subcontracting, registration of contractors, consequences of non-compliance, provided wider visitorial inspection powers to DOLE personnel and reiterated the solidary liability of “direct” and “indirect” employers. DO 174-17 is in addition to the Labor Code provisions prohibiting “labor only” contracting.
Application for new or renewal of Alien Employment Permit (AEP) can be filed within 45 working days after the lifting of the ECQ or GCQ without imposition of penalty in relation to DOLE DO 186-17.
DO 186-17 provides for the rules in the issuance of employment permits to foreign nationals. In addition, the foreign national must obtain the required special temporary permit from the Professional Regulation Commission in case the employment involves practice of profession and authority to employ alien from the Department of Justice where the employment is in a nationalized or partially nationalized industry and Department of Environment and Natural Resourcesin case of mining.
Application for new or renewal of licenses to operate private employment agencies can be filed within 45 days after the lifting of the ECQ and GCQ without penalty.
Petitions for certification for election, inter and intra-union cases, cases relative to AEPs, labor standard cases with finality and child labor cases, the filing of pleadings, motions, and all other papers relative to the above-mentioned cases is suspended for the duration of the community quarantine. Likewise, rendition of orders, judgments, and resolution is suspended.
Conferences and other proceedings requiring the personal appearances of the parties and counsels shall be cancelled. The concerned offices shall reschedule the date of the conferences or other proceedings once the community quarantine is lifted. In cases where there are monetary awards involved, the deadline for the payment of said awards is suspended for the duration of the community quarantine. The concerned offices shall reschedule the payment thereof after the lifting of the ECQ or GCQ.
Complaint inspection and occupational safety and health (OSH) investigation are suspended for the duration of the community quarantine while routine inspections shall continue to be suspended even after the lifting of the community quarantine.
The period to comply in pending labor standard cases is suspended during the community quarantine. Mandatory conferences scheduled during the community quarantine shall be rescheduled once the community quarantine is lifted.
Service of writs of executions shall be suspended during the community quarantine or until further notice, especially to those areas which may still be classified as high risk even after the lifting of the community quarantine. In addition, submission of documents for new or renewal of application for permit to operate mechanical equipment and certificate of electrical wiring installation is suspended during community quarantine.
Proceedings on administrative, assumption of jurisdiction, and voluntary arbitration cases pending before the OSEC, including those scheduled during the period covered by ECQ, shall be deemed suspended during the ECQ. As such, pleadings, motions, and other submissions made by the parties which are pending before it shall be acted upon after the community quarantine has been lifted.
Filing of appeals to the OSEC, if the period to file appeals or petitions from the orders/resolutions/decisions of DOLE regional directors, bureau directors, and Philippine Overseas Employment Administration Administrator falls within the ECQ period, shall be suspended and shall commence to run 15 days after the lifting of ECQ. If the period to file a motion for reconsideration from orders/resolutions/decisions of the SOLE on the appealed cases falls within then period when the ECQ is subsisting, the said period is deemed suspended and the movant may file the intended motion for reconsideration within 15 days after the lifting of the ECQ.
There will be separate guidelines to be issued by DOLE bureaus and attached agencies, namely Employees Compensation Commission, Institute of Labor Studies, Maritime Training Council, National Conciliation and Mediation Board, National Labor Relations Commission, National Maritime Polytechnic, National Wages and Productivity Commission, Occupational Safety and Health Center, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, and the PRC.