Saturday, August 8, 2015

Exhaustion of administrative remedies; doctrine of primary jurisdiction

MACARIO CATIPON, JR. VS. JEROME JAPSON, G.R. No. 191787, June 22, 2015

“x x x.

The doctrine of exhaustion of administrative remedies requires that “before a party is allowed to seek the intervention of the court, he or she should have availed himself or herself of all the means of administrative processes afforded him or her. Hence, if resort to a remedy within the administrative machinery can still be made by giving the administrative officer concerned every opportunity to decide on a matter that comes within his or her jurisdiction, then such remedy should be exhausted first before the court’s judicial power can be sought. The premature invocation of the intervention of the court is fatal to one’s cause of action. The doctrine of exhaustion of administrative remedies is based on practical and legal reasons. The availment of administrative remedy entails lesser expenses and provides for a speedier disposition of controversies. Furthermore, the courts of justice, for reasons of comity and convenience, will shy away from a dispute until the system of administrative redress has been completed and complied with, so as to give the administrative agency concerned every opportunity to correct its error and dispose of the case.”⁠5 Indeed, the administrative agency concerned – in this case the Commission Proper – is in the “best position to correct any previous error committed in its forum.”⁠6 

The CA is further justified in refusing to take cognizance of the petition for review, as “[t]he doctrine of primary jurisdiction does not warrant a court to arrogate unto itself the authority to resolve a controversy the jurisdiction over which is initially lodged with an administrative body of special competence.”⁠7 When petitioner’s recourse lies in an appeal to the Commission Proper in accordance with the procedure prescribed in MC 19, the CA may not be faulted for refusing to acknowledge petitioner before it.

X x x.”