Republic of the Philippines

Supreme Court Election Cases

A first in Philippine legal reference websites: This is the electronic version of the book: “A Compilation of Supreme Court Rulings on Election Cases (1901-2001)” published by the Senate Electoral Tribunal in 2010. The ‘ebook’ is grouped and categorized based on various election topics such as: the registration of political parties and voters, filing of certificates of candidacy, disqualifications, electoral campaign, contributions and expenditures to casting and counting of votes, appreciation of ballots, election returns and certificates of votes, canvass and proclamation, pre-proclamation controversy, election contests and election offenses.

Although the list is comprehensive and well organized, it does not contain the case summary, analysis and digest of the rulings. However, the full texts are provided.

The book is available for PhP1000.00 in the Senate Electoral Tribunal. For more information please email us at:


A Compilation of Supreme Court Rulings on Election Cases

(Promulgated from 1901-2001)


Chapter I: General Principles

  1. Source of Sovereign Power
  2. Republicanism

Chapter II: Suffrage

  1. Right to Suffrage Defined
  2. Source of Suffrage
  3. Nature of Suffrage
  4. Object of Suffrage
  5. Power of Congress to Regulate Suffrage
  6. Scope of Suffrage

Chapter III: Election

  1. Election, defined
  2. Purpose of Election
  3. System of Election Adopted in the Philippines
  4. Sources of Laws Governing Elections
  5. Aims and Objects of Election Laws
  6. Rules of Interpretation of Election Laws
  7. Kinds of Elections
  8. Initiative, Referendum, Recall, and Plebiscite

Chapter IV: Elective Constitutional Officers

  1. President and Vice President
  2. Senators
  3. House of Representatives
  4. Party-list Representatives

Chapter V: Other Elective Officials

  1. Local Officials
  2. Regional Assembly of the Autonomous Region
  3. Barangay Officials

Chapter Vi: Qualifications of Elective Officials

  1. Citizenship
  2. Age
  3. Residence
  4. Registered Voter
  5. Literacy

Chapter VII: Electoral Tribunals

  1. Presidential Electoral Tribunal
  2. Senate Electoral Tribunal
    1. Under the Jones Law
    2. Under the 1935 Constitution
    3. Under the 1973 Constitution
    4. Under the 1987 Constitution
  3. House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal

Chapter VIII: The Courts

  1. Municipal Trial Courts

    1. Inclusion or exclusion proceedings
    2. Barangay elections
  2. Regional Trial Courts
  3. Supreme Court

Chapter IX: Commission on Elections

  1. Creation, Organization and Membership
  2. Nature and Character of the Commission
  3. Qualifications
  4. Term of Office
  5. Factors Securing Independence
    1. Under the 1935 Constitution
    2. Under the 1987 Constitution
  6. Powers and Functions
    1. Enforce election laws
    2. Insure free, orderly, peaceful and credible elections
    3. Decide administrative questions affecting elections
    4. Supervise and control election officials, board of election inspectors and board canvassers
    5. Postpone elections
    6. Declare failure of elections
    7. Annul elections
    8. Hold special elections
    9. Act as a national board of canvassers
    10. Suspend/annul canvass and proclamation
    11. Compel new proclamation
    12. Deputize law enforcement agencies
    13. Investigate and prosecute election offenses
    14. Supervise and regulate use of franchise
    15. Initiative
    16. Reapportionment of legislative districts
    17. Promulgate rules of procedure
    18. Power of contempt
  7. Jurisdiction
    1. Original jurisdiction
    2. Appellate jurisdiction

Chapter X: Registration of Political Parties

  1. Political Parties
  2. Party-List

Chapter XI: Registration of Votes

  1. Qualified Voter
  2. Registered Voter
  3. Registration Outside Date Fixed by Law
  4. Annulment of List of Voters
  5. Voters in Highly Urbanized Cities

Chapter XII: Certificate of Candidacy

  1. Filing of Certificate of Candidacy
  2. Effect of Filing of Certificate of Candidacy
  3. Withdrawal of Certificate
  4. Substitution of Candidate
  5. False Representation in the Certificate
  6. Cancellation of Certificate
  7. Correction of Certificate

Chapter XIII: Disqualifications

  1. Non-Filipino Citizen
  2. Lack of Residency
  3. Term Limits
  4. Ineligibility
  5. Misconduct
  6. Fugitive from Justice
  7. Turncoatism

Chapter XIV: Electoral Campaign, Contributions and Expenditures

  1. Campaign
  2. Contributions and Expenditures

Chapter XV: Casting and Counting of Votes

  1. Precincts and Polling Places
  2. Voting Time
  3. Board of Election Inspectors
  4. Ballots and Election Documents
  5. Spoiled Ballots
  6. Excess Ballots
  7. Counting of Votes

Chapter XVI: Appreciation of Ballots

  1. Liberal Interpretation
  2. Rules for the Appreciation of Ballots
    1. Rule 1: Only the first name of a candidate or only his surname us written
    2. Rule 2: Only the first name of a candidate is written which has a sound similar to the surname of another candidate
    3. Rule 3: Candidate is a woman who uses her maiden or married surname or both
    4. Rule 4: Two or more words are written on the same line on the ballots, all of which are the surnames of two or more candidates or two or more words are written on different lines on the ballot
    5. Rule 5: Single word which is the first name of a candidate and which is at the same time the surname of the opponent
    6. Rule 6: Two words are written on the ballot, one of which is the first name of the candidate and the other is the surname of the opponent
    7. Rule 7: A name or surname incorrectly written which, when read has a sound similar to the name or surname of a candidate
    8. Rule 8: A name of a candidate appears in a space in the ballot for an office for which he is a candidate and in another space for which he us not a candidate
    9. Rule 9: A name of a candidate is erased and another is clearly written
    10. Rule 10: Erroneous initial of the first name which accompanies the correct surname of a candidate; erroneous initial of the surname accompanying the correct first name of a candidate; or erroneous middle initial of the candidate
    11. Rule 11: Another person who is not a candidate having the first name or surname of a candidate
    12. Rule 12: Ballots containing prefixes
    13. Rule 13: Use of nicknames and appellations of affection and friendship accompanied by the first name or surname of the candidate
      1. Nicknames
      2. Appellation of Affection of Friendship
      3. Descriptio Personae
    14. Rule 14: Vote containing initials only or which is illegible or which does not sufficiently identify the candidate
    15. Rule 15: First name if a candidate is incorrectly written but with a different surname or vice versa
    16. Rule 16: Ballot written with crayon, lead pencil, or in ink, wholly or in part
    17. Rule 17: Two or more candidates voted for in an office for which the law authorizes the election of one
    18. Rule 18: The candidates voted for exceed the number of those to be elected
    19. Rule 19: Vote in favor of a person who has not filed a certificate of candidacy or in favor of a candidate for an office for which he is not a candidate
    20. Rule 20: Name of a candidate printed and pasted or afficed through any mechanical process
    21. Rule 21: Circles, crosses or lines on the spaces on which the voter has not voted
    22. Rule 22: Marks bit deliberately put by the voter to serve as identification marks such as commas, dots, lines or hyphens, use of two or more kinds of writing, or accidental flourishes, strokes, stains
      1. Signs/marks not considered marking
        1. Use of two or more kinds of writing
        2. Writing in capital letters
        3. Use of block letters
        4. Writing of numbers
        5. Erasures and cancellations
        6. Parentheses
        7. Blemishes, smudges, fingerprints
        8. Signs indicative of desistance
          1. Blank spaces
          2. Erasures
          3. Words
          4. Parallel lines
          5. Diagonal lines
        9. Other signs/marks not considered as identification or marking
      2. Signs/marks considered as marking
        1. Irrelevant, impertinent or derogatory remarks
        2. Signed ballots
        3. Indented name
        4. Placing of “x” mark
        5. Design/pattern for identification
        6. Other signs/marks considered as marking
      3. Repetitions of name (marked or not marked)
    23. Rule 23: Ballot filed by two distinct persons
      1. Ballot marked after they are cast
      2. Ballot written by two persons (WBT)
      3. Ballot written by one person (WBO)
    24. Rule 24: Vote cast in favor of a candidate who has been disqualified by final judgement
    25. Rule 25: Ballots wholly written in Arabic
    26. Rule 26: Accidental tearing or perforation of a ballot
    27. Rule 27: Failure to remove the detachable coupon

Chapter XVII: Election Returns and Certificates

  1. Election Returns
    1. Prima facie status of ER
    2. Authentic copies of ER
    3. When ER prevails over ballots
    4. Tampered of manufactured ER
    5. Statistical improbability
    6. No power to look beyond face of ER
    7. Use of evidence aliunde
    8. Inclusion/exclusion of ER
    9. Amendment of ER
    10. Correction of manifest errors
    11. Annulment of ER
    12. Effect of threat, coercion, intimidation
    13. Effect of annulment of voting list
  2. Tally Board or Sheet
  3. Statement of Votes
  4. Certificate of Votes

Chapter XVIII: Canvass and Proclamation

  1. Board of Canvassers
    1. Composition
    2. Ministerial Duty
    3. Remedies
    4. Functus Officio
  2. Canvas and Proclamation
  3. Recount of Votes

Chapter XIX: Pre-proclamation Controversy

  1. Definition
  2. Scope
  3. Jurisdiction
  4. Summary Procedure
  5. Not Viable After Proclamation
  6. Rules on the Presentation of Evidence

Chapter XX: Election Contest

  1. Rules of Interpretation
  2. Scope
  3. Jurisdiction
  4. Sufficiency of an Election Protest
  5. Quo Warranto
  6. Injunction
  7. Mandamus
  8. Certiorari
  9. Right to assume office
  10. Filing of election protest before proclamation
  11. Filing of petition to annul or suspend proclamation
  12. Effect of petition of the filing of a pre-proclamation controversy
  13. Real party in interest
  14. Effect of the death of a party
  15. Right to intervene in an election protest
  16. Protest rendered moot and academic
  17. Abandonment of prostest
  18. Pleading and procedure
  19. Suppletory application of the Rules of Court
  20. Verification and certification of non-forum shopping
  21. Mandatory and jurisdictional period to file protest/quo warranto
  22. Payment of the required filing fees/cash deposit
  23. Mistake committed by receiving Clerk of Court
  24. Amendments to the protest
  25. Motion to dismiss
  26. Answer
  27. General denial
  28. Counter protest
  29. Summary dismissal
  30. Preservation and safekeeping of ballots and election documents and paraphernalia
  31. Withdrawal of contested/identified pilot areas/precincts
  32. Opening and examination of the ballot box
  33. Examination of documents
  34. Tampered ballot box
  35. Due process
  36. Evidence
  37. Demurrer to evidence
  38. Summary judgement
  39. Drawing of lots
  40. Motion for reconsideration
  41. Motion for new trial
  42.  Execution of judgement pending appeal
  43. Effect of an appeal
  44. Promulgation of decision
  45. Expenses
  46. Costs
  47. Damages
  48. Vacation of judgement
  49. Right of a second placer

Chapter XXI: Election Offenses

  1. Mala Prohibita
  2. Illegal Registration
  3. Failure to register or failure to vote
  4. Not entitled to vote
  5. Thwarting the will of the people
  6. Flying voters
  7. Corruption of voters
  8. Vote buying
  9. Use of carbon paper
  10. Vote padding
  11. Fraud
  12. Terrorism
  13. Possession of deadly weapon
  14. Violation on the gun ban on appointment/detail/transfer
  15. Electioneering
  16. Determination of probable cause
  17. Conduct of preliminary investigation
    1. Under the Revised Election Code (RA 180)
    2. Under the 1978 Election Code (PD 1296)
    3. Under the Omnibus Election Code (BP 881)
  18. Disqualification case
  19. Initiation of complaint
  20. Jurisdiction of Regional Trial Court
  21. Authority to Appeal
  22. Effect of re-election
  23. Condonation
  24. Amnesty
  25. Misconduct
  26. Damages
  27. Prescription of election offenses