C. Burden of proof and quantum of evidence in labor cases

Frequency: ★★★★☆

1. Shifts between employer and employee depending on circumstances

Notably, in determining the employee’s entitlement to monetary claims, the burden of proof is shifted from the employer or the employee, depending on the monetary claim sought. (Minsola v. New City Builders, Inc., G.R. No. 207613, 31 January 2018)

a. When on employer

In claims for payment of salary differential, service incentive leave, holiday pay and 13th month pay, the burden rests on the employer to prove payment. This likewise stems from the fact that all pertinent personnel files, payrolls, records, remittances and other similar documents – which will show that the differentials, service incentive leave and other claims of workers have been paid – are not in the possession of the worker but are in the custody and control of the employer. (Ibid.)

b. When on employee

On the other hand, for overtime pay, premium pays for holidays and rest days, the burden is shifted on the employee, as these monetary claims are not incurred in the normal course of business. It is thus incumbent upon the employee to first prove that he actually rendered service in excess of the regular eight working hours a day, and that he in fact worked on holidays and rest days. (Ibid.)

BAR EXAM TIPS
1) The burden of proof is not always with the employer.
2) When it comes to amounts regularly or usually received by the employee (e.g. salary, holiday pay, etc.) or should be received (e.g. 13th month pay, etc.), it is the employer’s burden of proof to show payment.
3) However, when it comes to those that are not regularly or usually received by the employees such as overtime pay (employees do not receive them by default unless they are directed to do overtime work), it is the employee’s burden of proof to show that he is entitled thereto.

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