SAN MIGUEL VILLAGE SCHOOL, petitioner,
HONORABLE AMIR PUKUNUM D. PUNDOGAR and CHRISTINA TRIÑO, respondents. Estelito R. Alvia for petitioner.
Macalalag Law Office & Associates for private respondent.
On 2 October 1985, petitioner San Miguel Village School filed a complaint for breach of contract with damages against respondent Christina Triño, before the Regional Trial Court, Branch 3, Lanao del Norte, the complaint being docketed as Civil Case No. L-111-577. A Certificate to File Action, signed by the Barangay Captain of Barangay Palao, Iligan City, dated 17 September 1985, bearing the notation that the "respondent cannot be contacted," was filed along with the complaint. Summons was served upon the private respondent through her husband. On 22 November 1985, private respondent having failed to file an answer within the reglementary period, the petitioner School moved to declare her in default. The trial court granted the motion, declared private respondent in default and designated the Branch Clerk of Court to receive the evidence of the petitioner and thereafter to report back to the court. From the evidence received by the Branch Clerk of Court from the petitioner, the following facts emerged: On 9 May 1985, petitioner, a duly accredited private school located at Barangay Palao, Iligan City, entered into a contract of services with private respondent Christina Triño. Under that contract, Christina Triño would teach at the petitioner School during the schoolyear 1985-1986, which would commence in June 1985 and end in March 1986. She was assigned to take charge of Grade VI, Intermediate Department. The contract also provided that any party desiring to terminate the contract before its scheduled expiration, would give the other party at least one month notice of termination in writing. Sometime in August 1985, while the contract was in full force and effect, and during a final examination period, private...