Latest Legal Update

Lessons learned from the PEACE Bonds case

In a recent case decided by the Supreme Court (SC) involving eight banks, an underwriter bank (acting as agent) and its principal, the issue of the taxability of interest income in a zero coupon bonds, known as Poverty Eradication and Alleviation Certificates (PEACe) Bonds, was the main subject of a controversy [Banco De Oro, et al. vs. Republic of the Philippines, et al., G.R. No 198756, promulgated on January 15, 2015 and August 16, 2016].


Local Business Tax: Payment under protest does not Apply

Every local government unit (LGU) is authorized and empowered by the Constitution and Republic Act No. 7160, otherwise known as the ”1991 Local Government Code (LGC)”, as amended, to levy taxes, fees, and other charges. Nonetheless, this power is not limitless or boundless but rather subject to the limitations as provided under the LGC and to such guidelines and limitations as Congress may provide.


RMC No. 105-2016 dated August 23, 2016, is a welcomed development

BIR Commissioner Caesar R. Dulay thru the aforesaid Revenue Memorandum Circular (RMC) abolished the cumbersome requirements of item No. 2 of RMC No. 76-2007, regarding transfer of real property, to wit:

“Certified true copy of the original CAR (copy of the Registry of Deeds) pertaining to the transfer of property prior to the issuance of Original/Transfer Certificate of Title (OCT/TCT) or Condominium Certificate of Title (CCT) which is the subject of the current sale/transfer, or certification issued by the Registry of Deeds indicating the serial number of the CAR, date of issuance of CAR, the Revenue District Office Number of the district office that issued the CAR, the name of the Revenue District Officer who signed the CAR, the type of taxes paid and the amount of payment per tax type.

  • Taxation

    The Firm advises and helps clients comply with all their tax-related requirements – securing BIR rulings on transactions, tax treaty relief applications, tax compliance audits, tax-free exchange rulings, tax assessments and refund claims. It also assists clients on their customs duty assessments, customs duty refund claim and anti-dumping controversies.

  • Investments, Mergers and Acquisitions

    The Firm has acted as counsel in many of the largest investments and M & A deals in the Philippines, shepherding these transactions from initial structuring and due diligence to the preparation of shareholders agreements to the requisite regulatory processes. The Firm also assists multinational companies establish their businesses in the country.

  • Employment and Labor Relations

    The Firm assists clients in due diligence, the legal aspects of hiring and preparation of employment contracts, manuals and programs for employee benefits, compliance, drafting and negotiating collective bargaining agreements, and transition issues including early retirement, dismissal and retrenchment. 

  • Immigration

    The Firm primarily gives advice and assists foreign expatriates of clients, including their dependents, secure from the Bureau of Immigration all kinds of Visas, I-Cards and other related documents. We also render legal assistance to foreign nationals on any matters relating to Philippine Immigration Act and related laws.

  • Litigation and Arbitration

    The lawyers review commercial transactions to better assess and manage the risk of future controversy.   The Firm acts as counsel to high profile individuals involved in inheritance squabble; purchase of properties of foreigners married to a national; as well as foreclosure proceedings in courts.

  • Intellectual Property

    The Firm assists clients register their Royalty and Trademark Agreements with the Intellectual Property Office to protect its intellectual property rights. The Firm also assists clients to have their invention patented at the Bureau of Patents at the Intellectual Property Office.

  • Corporate Secretary Services

    The Firm advises clients on compliance with corporate good governance.  Individual lawyers of the Firm serve as Director and Corporate Secretary of various local and multinational companies.  These lawyers assist clients in managing directors and stockholders meetings, share issuances and transfers, record keeping, and complying with reporting requirements imposed by such agencies as the Securities and Exchange Commission and Bureau of Internal Revenue.