10 New Philippine Laws that Everyone Needs to Know About

Philippine Laws: 10 New Laws that Everyone Needs to Know About

Since elections have been held in 2016, we’ve noticed a tonne of changes in our country. Let’s take a look at some of the most relevant Philippine laws that are in play today. It’s better to know and understand these laws now as they can prove to be useful for you.

The New and Improved Philippine Anti-Carnapping Law

Previously car-napping was an offense with a “get-out-of-jail-with-enough-cash” card. The Republic Act 10883 or “An act providing for the new anti-carnapping law of the Philippines” now prevents carnappers from posting bail.  Additionally, this upgraded Philippine law will require the Land Transportation Office (LTO) to keep a record of all cars and their respective owners.

An increase in jail time from the previous maximum of 17 years 4 months to around 20 to 30 years also faces those convicted of this particular crime. Additionally, if the felon used violence in conjunction with their car theft, their sentence could be extended to up to 40 years. An ultimate penalty of life imprisonment awaits those who, not only steal vehicles, but also rape or murder their victims.

This Philippine law also doesn’t spare any person who is involved in the ‘concealment of the act of carnapping’. They may be given 6-12 years in prison, and be fined the cost of the car, or any damages incurred in the crime.

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10905 Empowering the Deaf Community

Seeking to include and empower the deaf community, Republic Act 10905 is “An act requiring all franchise holders or operators of television stations and producers of TV programs to broadcast or present their programs with closed caption option”.

Exemptions to this rule are franchise holders or TV station operators and program producers who release public service announcements under 10 minutes, or if providing text caption would prove to be unfeasible economically. Programs aired between the hours of 1-6 in the morning, or those already textual in nature are also exempt.

A fine of P50,000 to a maximum of P100,00, and/or imprisonment for at least 6-12 months is in store for violators. Their license or permit to operate may also be revoked.

Philippine Laws: EO 26 – Lights Out For Lighting Up In Public

It’s either a blessing, or a curse. Executive Order 26, also known as “It’s-the-perfect-time-to-quit-smoking” law, which came into effect July 23, is a nationwide ban on smoking in public. Expanding on existing laws that prevent smoking indoors and the selling and consumption of tobacco to minors, this law seeks to break the cycle, and raise a generation weaned off of cigarettes.

This time, stricter implementation of Designated Smoking Areas (DSAs) accessible only to adults and not minors, along with a bans on advertisements such as posters, billboards, leaflets and other material near schools and places frequented by minors, reinforces the “out of sight, out of mind” mindset.

A boon for non-smokers, the law really gives children the chance to grow up breathing cleaner air, and a chance at a better, healthier future.

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10909 – Change is Good for You

In what could turn out to be a nightmare for cashiers everywhere, Republic Act 10909, “An act prohibiting business establishments from giving insufficient or no change to consumers, and providing penalties therefore” would mean businesses may be sued for failing to provide exact change. This law also requires that price tags display the exact price a consumer has to pay.

If proven in court, the first offense would mean a fine of P500 or 3% of gross sales, whichever is higher. P5,000 or 5% of gross for the second, and P15,000 or 7%  and a 3-month suspension of operations for the third. Beyond that, another offense could result in a fine of P25,000 and the total closure of the establishment.

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10911 – Age Is Just A Number

Old dogs can now learn new tricks! Republic Act 10911, “An act prohibiting discrimination against any individual in employment on account of age and providing penalties therefore” ensures that employers can no longer withhold promotions or deny training opportunities, compensation and privileges to employees on the basis of their age.

It is illegal for recruitment and employment agencies to refuse to help individuals, regardless of age, from seeking jobs. Labor organizations also cannot refuse employees membership because of their age.

Effective August 16, violators of this law will be fined at least P50,00 but not more than P500,000 and/or be imprisoned between 3 months to 2 years.

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10913 – Keep Your Eyes On The Road, Your Hands On The Wheel!

This is a no brainer if you value your life and those of others on the road. Republic Act 10913, “An act defining and penalizing distracted driving” means the driver/rider of both motorized and human powered/animal drawn vehicle, carriages,  carts, etc. and using public streets, highways, and thoroughfares, can’t use electronic devices(e.g. smartphone) while in traffic, moving or not.

Don’t call, text, read, watch, game, or surf on your device while driving.

Whats’s the use of having a smartphone then? Well, motorists are allowed to use their devices to make or take emergency calls to authorities in case of a crime, accidents, bomb or terrorist threat, fire or explosion, instances needing immediate medical attention, or when personal safety and security is compromised.

And Waze? Google maps? Sure. As long as the device is not obstructing the view the dashboard or view outside the vehicle. And that destinations are set prior to stepping on the gas and merging into traffic.

Violators will be fined P5,000 for their 1st offense, P10,000 the 2nd, and P15,000 with a suspension of license for 3 months for the 3rd.

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10916 – No Need For Speed, at least on public transport!

Gone are the days when two or more buses engage in an impromptu drag race, making drivers of lesser vehicles veer off course and risk getting entangled in a pile up. Republic Act 10916, “An act requiring the mandatory installation of speed limiters in public utility and certain types of vehicles” will require speed limiters on all covered public transport vehicles.

Owners and operators of these vehicles will have 18 months to comply after the law takes effect. Registration and franchise permits will not be issued, as well as a fine of P50,000 will be imposed for failure to comply.

The driver’s license will be suspended for 1 month, and the franchise permit for 3 months, if a vehicle is caught for the first time. The 2nd offense will mean a suspended license for 3 months, and the franchise suspended for 6 months. The 3rd offense will result in a revocation of license, and franchise suspension for at least a year.

Tampered speed limiters will result in imprisonment for 6 to 36 months and a fine of P30,000.

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10932 – No Need to pay Hospitals up front in an Emergency

You or your loved one’s chances for survival just increased dramatically. Republic Act 10932, “An act strengthening the anti-hospital deposit law by increasing the penalties for the refusal of hospitals and medical clinics to administer appropriate initial medical treatment and support in emergency, or serious cases” means the Anti-Hospital Deposit Law has sharper teeth.

This law provides that “in emergency or serious cases, it shall be unlawful for any hospital or medical clinic to request, solicit, demand or accept any deposit or any other form of advance payment as prerequisite for administering basic emergency care, for confinement or medical treatment, or to refuse to administer medical treatment and support to any patient.”

Doctors and medical staff who violate this law face imprisonment of 6 months and a day to 2 years and 4 months. Or be fined P100,000 to P300,000. Or both.  Directors or officers of hospitals/clinics who make and impose rules against this law will be serve jail time ranging from 4-6 years, be fined P500,000 to P1million, or both.

Three repeated violations and the Department of Health(DOH) will revoke a health facility’s license to operate.

Furthermore, in case of death, permanent disability, serious health impairment of the patient-complainant, or in the case of a pregnant woman, the permanent injury or loss of her unborn child as a result of denial of admission to the health facility, will give rise to a presumption of liability against the hospital/clinic, official, medical practitioner or employee.

Who will foot the bill? PhilHealth, PCSO, Dept of Health, and the BIR are all expected to pull together to help people without the means. Certain Non-governmental Organizations(NGOs) will also be consulted regarding Implementing Rules and Regulations(IRR).

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10906 – Getting Married but only For Real

Replacing Republic Act 6955, also known as the “anti-mail order bride law”, Republic Act 10906 is “An act providing stronger measures against unlawful practices, business, and schemes of matching and offering Filipinas to foreign nationals for purposes of marriage or common law partnership” and will heavily penalize any person who has in any way engaged in business to exploit Filipinas and offer them to foreigners for marriage.

Those found guilty of this crime will be fined at least P500,000, but not more than a million pesos, and be imprisoned for 15 years. The same sentence will be given to any individual who cooperated in this act. But if three or more persons were involved in the operation of this illegal act, the penalty will be from 2-5 million pesos and imprisonment will be 20 years.

Accessories to this crime aren’t spared, facing 10 years in jail, and fines from P100,000 to P500,000.

Foreign offenders will be deported to their country of origin. And if the offender was under the employment of an establishment, the person in-charge who participated in the crime will be facing penalties as well.

The government will take possession of all proceeds, as well as penalties. Victims will then receive assistance from respective government agencies and commissions.

Philippine Laws: Republic Act 10910 – Longer Reach Against Graft and Corruption

Hey, look! More time to catch a crook! Republic Act 10910, “An act increasing the prescriptive period for violations of Republic Act 3019 otherwise known as the ‘anti-graft and corrupt practices act’ from 15 to 20 years, amending section 11 thereof” makes possible to carry out judgement on individuals guilty of graft and corruption 5 years beyond the previous 15-year statute of limitations.

Check out our latest article regarding Republic Act: 11360 and the issue of Service Charge

What do you think?

Written by Trudy Allen

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