Administrative Review

April 23, 2018 | Author: Catherine Adlawan | Category: Hearing (Law), Appeal, Supreme Courts, Due Process Clause, Constitutional Law
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Adlawan, Catherine Bernabe, Joseph Admin Law (EXEC CLASS) Administrative Review In layman’s term review pertain to an evaluation or inspection of a thing. In political law Review is a reconsideration or re-examination of a decision or ruling of a subordinate officer by a superior officer or in case of administrative agencies by higher  administrative agency. It is the power to determine whether it is necessary to correct the acts of the subordinate and to see to it that he perform his duties in accordance with law. Administrative Review therefore is the power by higher officer in an administrative agency in the government to scrutinize or if it so warrants correct or reverse the acts or  decisions of a subordinate and ensure that the subordinate do his duties. Limitations of Administrative Review Like any power granted to public officials administrative review is not absolute and must concede to certain limitations. In the case De Leon vs Heir of Gregorio Reyes, the Supreme Court pointed out that while heads of administrative agency have the powe powerr to revers reverse e or chang change e the the findin findings gs of their their subord subordina inate te they they canno cannott do this this haphazardly or indiscriminately. While While there there is no disp disput uting ing the the author authorit ity y of admin adminis istr trat ativ ive e superio superiors rs to reverse reverse the findin findings gs of their their subordi subordinat nates, es, this this   power power must must be exerc exercis ised ed spari sparing ngly ly and only only upon upon a clear  clear  showing of error. Lacking such flaw, the decision of the lower  admini administr strati ative ve offici officials als should should be sustain sustained, ed, if only only becaus because e they have closer access to the problem sought to be resolved  and have the direct opportunity to question the parties and their  witnesses and to assess the evidence first-hand. 1

The rule therefore is that for administrative officials to be able to reverse or  chan change ge the decis decision ions s or findin findings gs of their their subo subordi rdinat nates es it must must be show shown n that that the subject decision under review is flawed and erroneous; if the decision in question is correct and just then such decision must be upheld and sustained. The The genera generall rule rule with with regard regards s to eviden evidences ces is that that evide evidence nces s not forma formally lly submitted or during the hearing may not be presented or submitted if the matter is already on appeal. appeal. This general general rule though has an exception. exception. The exception applies applies to issues not raised before the lower administrative agency and evidences in relation with these issues were not properly presented but the lower administrative agency resolved such issues in its decision. In the case of Vda. De Pineda vs Pena 2, the Supreme Court ruled that refusal and disregard of the reviewing agency to consider  rebuttal evidence on the ground that it was not presented properly during the hearing amounts to grave abuse of discretion. Appe Appeal al to highe higherr admin administ istra rativ tive e body body is not not limite limited d to review review of evide evidence nce submitted if there is no law prohibiting such body from conducting further hearing on

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De Leon v. Heirs of Gregorio Reyes, 155 SCRA 584, 588 (1987) 187 SCRA 22 (1990)

issues of facts. The Cases of Reyes v Zamora 3 and Benguet Exploration, Inc. v DENR 4 explain the points and rationale of allowing administrative bodies to conduct further  hearing on issues of facts. While the case of Reyes pointed out that participation in the hearing by the party estopped such party from questioning the hearing, it also emphasize that lack of law prohibiting the president from conducting further hearing and the necessity for the new hearing because of the lack in important facts germane to the determination of the issue. While the case of Benguet Exploration pointed out the ‘fundamental essential requirements of due process in trials and investigation of an administrative character’ and in the interest of justice that new hearings is allowed especially in case that factual circumstances must be ascertain to justly decide the case. Another limitation to Administrative Review is that the one reviewing is not the same person who rendered the judgment. This is possible when the subordinate official is promoted to higher position, which his previous decisions are appealed to the office he now occupies. The one who made the decision is inhibited to make the review; the decision of the reviewing officer will be bias since he was the one who made the decision. The Supreme Court in the case of Zambales Chromite Mining Company vs CA 5 struck down the decision of the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources because it was established that decision being reviewed was decided by the Secretary himself while still holding lower or subordinate office. His action was called as a “mockery of administrative justice”.


90 SCRA 92 (1979) 75 SCRA 285 (1977) 5 94 SCRA 261 (1979) 4

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