REPUBLIC ACT No. 304
An Act to Provide for the Registration of the Claims of All Officers and Employees of the Government of the Commonwealth of the Philippines, its Branches and Instrumentalities and the Corporations Owned or Controlled by the Government and Those of the Free Local Civil Governments, Provincial and Municipal, Duly Organized for Purposes of Resistance Against the Enemy, to Salaries and Wages During the Enemy or Japanese Occupation of the Philippines and to Provide for the Manner of Their Settlement
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippine Congress Assembled:
Section 1. Except as herein provided, the right of all officers, employees and persons under contract with the Government of the Commonwealth of the Philippines who, on the eighth day of December, nineteen hundred and forty-one, were serving in the classified or unclassified service of the national, provincial, city or municipal governments, including the University of the Philippines and the corporations owned or controlled by the Government, to such of their respective salaries, emoluments, fees, per diems, compensations or wages as have not been received by them by reason of the war, and those of the free local civil governments, provincial and municipal, duly organized for purposes of resistance against the enemy, corresponding to the period from January first, nineteen hundred and forty-two, up to and including February twenty-six, nineteen hundred and forty-five, or any portion of such period or before and subsequent thereto when they were in operation, as hereinbelow provided is, under the conditions provided in this Act, hereby recognized. The recognition herein provided shall not extend to the salaries and wages of: (a) officers and enlisted personnel of the United States Army or Navy and commissioned officers of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey and the United States Public Health and Quarantine Service on detail with the Government of the Commonwealth of the Philippines; (b) officers and employees found guilty after due trial in such cases made and provided by law, of treason, espionage, or any act constituting disloyalty to the Government of the Philippines or of the United States committed at any time during the enemy or Japanese occupation of the Philippines unless pardoned or granted amnesty; and (c) officers and employees who received salaries from the Refugee Government of the Commonwealth of the Philippines in the United States of America or elsewhere. Officers or employees who died on or before the date of the liberation of the province or city where assigned on the date of the occupation, but not later than February twenty-sixth, nineteen hundred and forty-five, shall have the right to such salaries or wages under the conditions referred to in this section, up to the time of their death, if determinable, or the date they were last seen alive. The right to salaries or wages herein authorized shall be computed from the day of the occupation of each province or city by the Japanese up to the date of the liberation thereof, the date of occupation or liberation, as the case may be, of the capital to be deemed as the date of the occupation or liberation of the province respectively.
Section 2. The Treasurer of the Philippines shall, upon application, and within one year from the approval of this Act, and under such rules and regulations as may be promulgated by the Secretary of Finance, acknowledge and file requests for the recognition of the right to the salaries or wages as provided in section one hereof, and notice of such acknowledgment shall be issued to the applicant which shall state the total amount of such salaries or wages due the applicant, and certify that it shall be redeemed by the Government of the Philippines within ten years from the date of their issuance without interest: Provided, That upon application and subject to such rules and regulations as may be approved by the Secretary of Finance, a certificate of indebtedness may be issued by the Treasurer of the Philippines covering the whole or a part of the total salaries or wages the right to which has been duly acknowledged and recognized, provided that the face value of such certificate of indebtedness shall not exceed the amount that the applicant may need for the payment of (1) obligations subsisting at the time of the approval of this Act for which the applicant may directly be liable to the Government or to any of its branches or instrumentalities, or the corporations owned or controlled by the Government, or to any citizen of the Philippines, or to any association or corporation organized under the laws of the Philippines, who may be willing to accept the same for such settlement; (2) his taxes, and (3) government hospital bills of the applicant: Provided, further, That such settlement shall be effected by endorsement of said certificate, such endorsement to be annotated on the instrument: Provided, furthermore, That no certificate shall be transferred or ceded by endorsement more than once nor at a discount rate exceeding two per centum per annum: And provided, also, That investment funds or banks or other financial institutions owned or controlled by the Government shall, subject to availability of loanable funds, and any provision of their charters, articles of incorporation, by-laws, or rules and regulations to the contrary notwithstanding, accept or discount at not more than two per centum per annum for ten years such certificate for the following purposes only: (1) the acquisition of real property for use as the applicant’s home, or (2) the building or construction or reconstruction of the residential house of the payee of said certificate: Provided, finally, That if certificates of indebtedness have been issued to an officer or employee, his back pay at the end of ten years from the date of the approval of this Act shall be equal to the amount due him under the provisions of this Act minus the full and total face value of the certificates of indebtedness issued to him in the interim. Failure to file the application within the time herein provided for will, forfeit whatever right there may be to any back salary or wage which otherwise should have been due the applicant.
Section 3. The total of the back pay the right to which may by application be established, shall computed at the rate of salary, emolument, fee, per diem, compensation or wage subsisting on January first, nineteen hundred and forty-two in the case of offices located in the City of Manila, and on the date immediately preceding that on which the provincial capital or the city was occupied by the enemy in the case of offices located in the provinces, cities, and municipalities, and shall be an obligation of the branch, instrumentality, or unit of the Government that employed the officer or employee concerned on December eight, nineteen hundred forty-one: Provided, That if the office of employment on the latter date has been converted into, or merged with, another, or is no longer existing such as those of the resistance movement, the payment shall be borne by the governmental branch or entity wherein the applicant is employed on the date of the approval of this Act; or when not so employed in any governmental unit on the date of the approval of this Act, the corresponding obligation shall pertain to the National Government.
Section 4. At the end of each fiscal year, the National Government shall be reimbursed by the province, city, municipality, the University of the Philippines, or the corporation owned or controlled by the Government, whichever is concerned, for the amount of the annual contribution made by the former to the sinking fund created in this Act to meet the total of the back pay which shall accrue and be payable to their officers and employees at the end of ten years from the approval of this Act. Upon failure to make such reimbursement, the Treasurer of the Philippines is hereby directed to withhold from any amount due from the National Government to the province, city, municipality, the University of the Philippines, or the corporation owned or controlled by the Government, such sums as will be sufficient to make the corresponding reimbursement above provided, unless otherwise exempted therefrom in accordance with law.
Section 5. The salaries or wages or certificates of indebtedness herein provided, shall be exempt from attachment or levy, except for the payment of taxes or obligations for which the particular officers or employees may be directly liable as provided in this Act. Any amount of back pay received by an officer or employee under the provisions of this Act, whether in cash or by means of the certificate of indebtedness, shall be exempt from all taxes of every kind and nature.
Section 6. In case of the death of an officer or employee entitled to the benefits of this Act, his legitimate heir or heirs or the legitimate assignee or endorsee of his certificate or certificates of indebtedness shall succeed to the rights of the said officer or employee thereto subsisting at the time of his death.
Section 7. The three-months advance salary given pursuant to Administrative Order Numbered One hundred sixty-seven, dated December twelve, nineteen hundred and forty-one and Commonwealth Act Numbered Six hundred seventy-six, and the two months’ gratuity paid under Administrative Order Numbered Twenty-seven, dated December seven, nineteen hundred forty-five, and Executive Order Numbered Eighty-three, dated December twenty-four, nineteen hundred and forty-five, and any back pay received or to be received from the United States Government shall be deducted from the payment of the back pay.1aшphi1
Section 8. A sinking fund is hereby created for the settlement of the registered rights to back pay recognized under the provisions of this Act or the redemption of the certificates of indebtedness issued thereunder, in such manner that the annual installment thereto, plus interest at the rate of five per centum per annum, shall equal the total face value of the registered back pay rights, the latter including all outstanding certificates of indebtedness issued thereunder. Such sinking fund shall be under the custody of the National Treasurer who shall invest it to earn not less than five per centum per annum with either the Philippine National Bank, the Rehabilitation Finance Corporation, the Government Service Insurance System, or any other banking or investment institution under the control of the National Government.
Section 9. A standing annual appropriation is hereby made out of the general funds in the National Treasury not otherwise appropriated, of such sums as may be necessary to provide for the sinking fund mentioned in the last preceding section. Notwithstanding the provisions of sections one and eight of this Act, the obligation to be entered in the books of account, of the Government by reason hereof shall be the face value of all certificates of indebtedness issued and outstanding.
Section 10. There is hereby appropriated out of the general funds in the National Treasury not otherwise appropriated the sum of fifty thousand pesos for such administrative expenses as may be authorized by the President of the Philippines to carry out the provisions of this Act.
Section 11. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.
Approved: June 18, 1948.
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