QUO WARRANTO - Rules of Court

RULE 66 QUO WARRANTO

SECTION 1. Action by Government against individuals.-An action for the usurpation of a public office, position or franchise may be commenced by a verified petition brought in the name of the Republic of the Philippines against:

(a) A person who usurps, intrudes into, or unlawfully holds or exercises a public office, position or franchise;

(b) A public officer who does or suffers an act which, by the provision of law, constitutes a ground for the forfeiture of his office; or

(c) An association which acts as a corporation within the Philippines without being legally incorporated or without lawful authority so to act. (1a)

SEC. 2. When Solicitor General or public prosecutor must commence action.-The Solicitor General or a public prosecutor, when directed by the President of the Philippines, or when upon complaint or otherwise he has good reason to believe that any case specified in the preceding section can be established by proof, must commence such action. (3a)

SEC. 3. When Solicitor General or public prosecutor may commence action with permission of court.-The Solicitor General or a public prosecutor may, with the permission of the court in which the action is to be commenced, bring such an action at the request and upon the relation of another person; but in such case the officer bringing it may first require an indemnity for the expenses and costs of the action in an amount approved by and to be deposited in the court by the person at whose request and upon whose relation the same is brought. (4a)

SEC. 4. When hearing had on application for permission to commence action.-Upon application for permission to commence such action in accordance with the next preceding section, the court shall direct that notice be given to the respondent so that he may be heard in opposition thereto; and if permission is granted, the court shall issue an order to that effect, copies of which shall be served on all interested parties, and the petition shall then be filed within the period ordered by the court. (5a)

SEC. 5. When an individual may commence such an action.-A person claiming to be entitled to a public office or position usurped or unlawfully held or exercised by another may bring an action therefor in his own name. (6)

SEC. 6. Parties and contents of petition against usurpa­tion.-When the action is against a person for usurping a public office, position or franchise, the petition shall set forth the name of the person who claims to be entitled thereto, if any, with an averment of his right to the same and that the respondent is unlawfully in possession thereof. All persons who claim to be entitled to the public office, position or franchise may be made parties, and their respective rights to such public office, position or franchise determined, in the same action. (7a)

SEC. 7. Venue.-An action under the preceding six sections can be brought only in the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, or in the Regional Trial Court exercising jurisdiction over the territorial area where the respondent or any of the respondents resides, but when the Solicitor General commences the action, it may be brought in a Regional Trial Court in the City of Manila, in the Court of Appeals, or in the Supreme Court. (8a)

SEC. 8. Period for pleadings and proceedings may be reduced; action given precedence .-The court may reduce the period provided by these Rules for filing pleadings and for all other proceedings in the action in order to secure the most expeditious determination of the matters involved therein consistent with the rights of the parties. Such action may be given precedence over any other civil matter pending in the court. (9a)

SEC. 9. Judgment where usurpation found.-When the respondent is found guilty of usurping, intruding into, or unlawfully holding or exercising a public office, position or franchise, judgment shall be rendered that such respondent be ousted and altogether excluded therefrom, and that the petitioner or relator, as the case may be, recover his costs. Such further judgment may be rendered determining the respective rights in and to the public office, position or franchise of all the parties to the action as justice requires. (10a)

SEC. 10. Rights of persons adjudged entitled to public office; delivery of books and papers; damages.-If judgment be rendered in favor of the person averred in the complaint to be entitled to the public office he may, after taking the oath of office and executing any official bond required by law, take upon himself the execution of the office, and may immediately thereafter demand of the respondent all the books and papers in the respondent’s custody or control appertaining to the office to which the judgment relates. If the respondent refuses or neglects to deliver any book or paper pursuant to such demand, he may be punished for contempt as having disobeyed a lawful order of the court. The person adjudged entitled to the office may also bring action against the respondent to recover the damages sustained by such person by reason of the usurpation. (15a)

SEC. 11. Limitations.-Nothing contained in this Rule shall be construed to authorize an action against a public officer or employee for his ouster from office unless the same be commenced within one (1) year after the cause of such ouster, or the right of the petitioner to hold such office or position, arose; nor to authorize an action for damages in accordance with the provisions of the next preceding section unless the same be commenced within one (1) year after the entry of the judgment establishing the petitioner’s right to the office in question. (16a)

SEC. 12. Judgment for costs.-In an action brought in accordance with the provisions of this Rule, the court may render judgment for costs against either the petitioner, the relator, or the respondent, or the person or persons claiming to be a corporation, or may apportion the costs, as justice requires. (17a)