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Pay Parking in Malls Affirmed


SUPREME COURT OF THE PHILIPPINES

Benchmark Online October 2009


By Jay B. Rempillo

The Supreme Court has upheld the right of mall owners to collect parking fees from their customers.

In a 26-page decision penned by Justice Minita V. Chico-Nazario, the High Court denied the petition for review on certiorari filed by the Office of the Solicitor General, which sought to reverse and set aside January 25, 2007 decision and March 14, 2007 resolution of the Court of Appeals, affirming in toto the May 29, 2002 decision of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Makati City, Branch 138 and denying petitioner’s motion for reconsideration, respectively. The RTC had held that respondents Ayala Land Incorporated, Robinsons Land Corporation, Shangri-La Plaza Corporation, and SM Prime Holdings, Inc. could not be obliged to provide free parking spaces in their malls to their patrons and the general public.

The Court said that the total prohibition against the collection by respondents of parking fees from persons who use the mall parking facilities has no basis in the National Building Code or its implementing rules and regulations. It added that the State also cannot impose the same prohibition by generally invoking police power, since said prohibition amounts to a taking of respondents’ property without payment of just compensation. (GR No. 177056, Office of the Solicitor General v. Ayala Land Incorporated, September 18, 2009)

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read full decision > > > http://sc.judiciary.gov.ph/jurisprudence/2009/september2009/177056.htm