of the Philippines
RULE ON THE WRIT OF AMPARO
on the recommendation of the Chairperson of the Committee on Revision
of the Rules of Court submitting for this Court’s consideration and
approval the proposed Rule on the Writ of Amparo, the Court Resolved to
APPROVE the same.
This Rule shall take effect on October 24, 2007, following its
publication in three (3) newspapers of general circulation.
RENATO S. PUNO
LEONARO A. QUISUMBING
ANTONIO T. CARPIO
MA. ALICIA AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ
RENATO C. CORONA
CONCHITA CARPIO MORALES
ADOLFO S. AZCUNA
DANTE O. TINGA
MINITA V. CHICO-NAZARIO
CANCIO C. GARCIA
PRESBITERO J. VELASCO, JR.
ANTONIO EDUARDO B. NACHURA
RUBEN T. REYES
RULE ON THE WRIT OF AMPARO
1. Petition. - The petition for a writ of amparo is a remedy
available to any person whose right to life, liberty and security is
violated or threatened with violation by an unlawful act or omission of
a public official or employee, or of a private individual or entity.
The writ shall cover extralegal killings and enforced disappearances or
Sec. 2. Who May File. - The petition may be filed by the aggrieved
party or by any qualified person or entity in the following order:
Any member of the immediate family, namely: the spouse, children and
parents of the aggrieved party;
Any ascendant, descendant or collateral relative of the aggrieved party
within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity, in default
of those mentioned in the preceding paragraph; or
Any concerned citizen, organization, association or institution, if
there is no known member of the immediate family or relative of the
filing of a petition by the aggrieved party suspends the right of all
other authorized parties to file similar petitions. Likewise, the
filing of the petition by an authorized party on behalf of the
aggrieved party suspends the right of all others, observing the order
Sec. 3. Where to File. - The petition may be filed on any day and at
any time with the Regional Trial Court of the place where the threat,
act or omission was committed or any of its elements occurred, or with
the Sandiganbayan, the Court of Appeals, the Supreme Court, or any
justice of such courts. The writ shall be enforceable anywhere in the
When issued by a Regional Trial Court or any judge thereof, the writ
shall be returnable before such court or judge.
When issued by the Sandiganbayan or the Court of Appeals or any of
their justices, it may be returnable before such court or any justice
thereof, or to any Regional Trial Court of the place where the threat,
act or omission was committed or any of its elements occurred.
When issued by the Supreme Court or any of its justices, it may be
returnable before such Court or any justice thereof, or before the
Sandiganbayan or the Court of Appeals or any of their justices, or to
any Regional Trial Court of the place where the threat, act or omission
was committed or any of its elements occurred.
Sec. 4. No Docket Fees. - The petitioner shall be exempted from the
payment of the docket and other lawful fees when filing the petition.
The court, justice or judge shall docket the petition and act upon it
Sec. 5. Contents of Petition. - The petition shall be signed and
verified and shall allege the following:
The personal circumstances of the petitioner;
The name and personal circumstances of the respondent responsible for
the threat, act or omission, or, if the name is unknown or uncertain,
the respondent may be described by an assumed appellation;
The right to life, liberty and security of the aggrieved party violated
or threatened with violation by an unlawful act or omission of the
respondent, and how such threat or violation is committed with the
attendant circumstances detailed in supporting affidavits;
The investigation conducted, if any, specifying the names, personal
circumstances, and addresses of the investigating authority or
individuals, as well as the manner and conduct of the investigation,
together with any report;
The actions and recourses taken by the petitioner to determine the fate
or whereabouts of the aggrieved party and the identity of the person
responsible for the threat, act or omission; and
The relief prayed for.
The petition may include a general prayer for other just and equitable
Sec. 6. Issuance of the Writ. - Upon the filing of the petition, the
court, justice or judge shall immediately order the issuance of the
writ if on its face it ought to issue. The clerk of court shall issue
the writ under the seal of the court; or in case of urgent necessity,
the justice or the judge may issue the writ under his or her own hand,
and may deputize any officer or person to serve it.
The writ shall also set the date and time for summary hearing of the
petition which shall not be later than seven (7) days from the date of
Sec. 7. Penalty for Refusing to Issue or Serve the Writ. - A clerk of
court who refuses to issue the writ after its allowance, or a deputized
person who refuses to serve the same, shall be punished by the court,
justice or judge for contempt without prejudice to other disciplinary
Sec. 8. How the Writ is Served. - The writ shall be served upon the
respondent by a judicial officer or by a person deputized by the court,
justice or judge who shall retain a copy on which to make a return of
service. In case the writ cannot be served personally on the
respondent, the rules on substituted service shall apply.
Sec. 9. Return; Contents. - Within seventy-two (72) hours after service
of the writ, the respondent shall file a verified written return
together with supporting affidavits which shall, among other things,
contain the following:
The lawful defenses to show that the respondent did not violate or
threaten with violation the right to life, liberty and security of the
aggrieved party, through any act or omission;
The steps or actions taken by the respondent to determine the fate or
whereabouts of the aggrieved party and the person or persons
responsible for the threat, act or omission;
All relevant information in the possession of the respondent pertaining
to the threat, act or omission against the aggrieved party; and
If the respondent is a public official or employee, the return shall
further state the actions that have been or will still be taken:
to verify the identity of the aggrieved party;
to recover and preserve evidence related to the death or disappearance
of the person identified in the petition which may aid in the
prosecution of the person or persons responsible;
to identify witnesses and obtain statements from them concerning the
death or disappearance;
to determine the cause, manner, location and time of death or
disappearance as well as any pattern or practice that may have brought
about the death or disappearance;
to identify and apprehend the person or persons involved in the death
or disappearance; and
to bring the suspected offenders before a competent court.
The return shall also state other matters relevant to the
investigation, its resolution and the prosecution of the case.
A general denial of the allegations in the petition shall not be
Sec. 10. Defenses not Pleaded Deemed Waived. - All defenses shall be
raised in the return, otherwise, they shall be deemed waived.
Sec. 11. Prohibited Pleadings and Motions. - The following pleadings
and motions are prohibited:
Motion to dismiss;
Motion for extension of time to file return, opposition, affidavit,
position paper and other pleadings;
Dilatory motion for postponement;
Motion for a bill of particulars;
Counterclaim or cross-claim;
Motion to declare respondent in default;
Motion for reconsideration of interlocutory orders or interim relief
Petition for certiorari, mandamus or prohibition against any
Sec. 12. Effect of Failure to File Return. - In case the respondent
fails to file a return, the court, justice or judge shall proceed to
hear the petition ex parte.
Sec. 13. Summary Hearing. - The hearing on the petition shall be
summary. However, the court, justice or judge may call for a
preliminary conference to simplify the issues and determine the
possibility of obtaining stipulations and admissions from the parties.
The hearing shall be from day to day until completed and given the same
priority as petitions for habeas corpus.
Sec. 14. Interim Reliefs. - Upon filing of the petition or at anytime
before final judgment, the court, justice or judge may grant any of the
Temporary Protection Order. - The court, justice or judge, upon motion
or motu proprio, may order that the petitioner or the aggrieved party
and any member of the immediate family be protected in a government
agency or by an accredited person or private institution capable of
keeping and securing their safety. If the petitioner is an
organization, association or institution referred to in Section 3(c) of
this Rule, the protection may be extended to the officers involved.
Supreme Court shall accredit the persons and private institutions that
shall extend temporary protection to the petitioner or the aggrieved
party and any member of the immediate family, in accordance with
guidelines which it shall issue.
accredited persons and private institutions shall comply with the rules
and conditions that may be imposed by the court, justice or judge.
Inspection Order. - The court, justice or judge, upon verified motion
and after due hearing, may order any person in possession or control of
a designated land or other property, to permit entry for the purpose of
inspecting, measuring, surveying, or photographing the property or any
relevant object or operation thereon.
motion shall state in detail the place or places to be inspected. It
shall be supported by affidavits or testimonies of witnesses having
personal knowledge of the enforced disappearance or whereabouts of the
the motion is opposed on the ground of national security or of the
privileged nature of the information, the court, justice or judge may
conduct a hearing in chambers to determine the merit of the opposition.
movant must show that the inspection order is necessary to establish
the right of the aggrieved party alleged to be threatened or violated.
inspection order shall specify the person or persons authorized to make
the inspection and the date, time, place and manner of making the
inspection and may prescribe other conditions to protect the
constitutional rights of all parties. The order shall expire five (5)
days after the date of its issuance, unless extended for justifiable
Production Order. - The court, justice or judge, upon verified motion
and after due hearing, may order any person in possession, custody or
control of any designated documents, papers, books, accounts, letters,
photographs, objects or tangible things, or objects in digitized or
electronic form, which constitute or contain evidence relevant to the
petition or the return, to produce and permit their inspection, copying
or photographing by or on behalf of the movant.
motion may be opposed on the ground of national security or of the
privileged nature of the information, in which case the court, justice
or judge may conduct a hearing in chambers to determine the merit of
court, justice or judge shall prescribe other conditions to protect the
constitutional rights of all the parties.
Witness Protection Order. - The court, justice or judge, upon motion or
motu proprio, may refer the witnesses to the Department of Justice for
admission to the Witness Protection, Security and Benefit Program,
pursuant to Republic Act No. 6981.
court, justice or judge may also refer the witnesses to other
government agencies, or to accredited persons or private institutions
capable of keeping and securing their safety.
Sec. 15. Availability of Interim Reliefs to Respondent. - Upon verified
motion of the respondent and after due hearing, the court, justice or
judge may issue an inspection order or production order under
paragraphs (b) and (c) of the preceding section.
A motion for inspection order under this section shall be supported by
affidavits or testimonies of witnesses having personal knowledge of the
defenses of the respondent.
Sec. 16. Contempt. - The court, justice or judge may order the
respondent who refuses to make a return, or who makes a false return,
or any person who otherwise disobeys or resists a lawful process or
order of the court to be punished for contempt. The contemnor may be
imprisoned or imposed a fine.
Sec. 17. Burden of Proof and Standard of Diligence Required. - The
parties shall establish their claims by substantial evidence.
The respondent who is a private individual or entity must prove that
ordinary diligence as required by applicable laws, rules and
regulations was observed in the performance of duty.
The respondent who is a public official or employee must prove that
extraordinary diligence as required by applicable laws, rules and
regulations was observed in the performance of duty.
The respondent public official or employee cannot invoke the
presumption that official duty has been regularly performed to evade
responsibility or liability.
Sec. 18. Judgment. - The court shall render judgment within ten (10)
days from the time the petition is submitted for decision. If the
allegations in the petition are proven by substantial evidence, the
court shall grant the privilege of the writ and such reliefs as may be
proper and appropriate; otherwise, the privilege shall be denied.
Sec. 19. Appeal. - Any party may appeal from the final judgment or
order to the Supreme Court under Rule 45. The appeal may raise
questions of fact or law or both.
The period of appeal shall be five (5) working days from the date of
notice of the adverse judgment.
The appeal shall be given the same priority as in habeas corpus cases.
Sec. 20. Archiving and Revival of Cases. - The court shall not dismiss
the petition, but shall archive it, if upon its determination it cannot
proceed for a valid cause such as the failure of petitioner or
witnesses to appear due to threats on their lives.
A periodic review of the archived cases shall be made by the amparo
court that shall, motu proprio or upon motion by any party, order their
revival when ready for further proceedings. The petition shall be
dismissed with prejudice upon failure to prosecute the case after the
lapse of two (2) years from notice to the petitioner of the order
archiving the case.
The clerks of court shall submit to the Office of the Court
Administrator a consolidated list of archived cases under this Rule not
later than the first week of January of every year.
Sec. 21. Institution of Separate Actions. - This Rule shall not
preclude the filing of separate criminal, civil or administrative
Sec. 22. Effect of Filing of a Criminal Action. - When a criminal
action has been commenced, no separate petition for the writ shall be
filed. The reliefs under the writ shall be available by motion in the
The procedure under this Rule shall govern the disposition of the
reliefs available under the writ of amparo.
Sec. 23. Consolidation. - When a criminal action is filed subsequent to
the filing of a petition for the writ, the latter shall be consolidated
with the criminal action.
When a criminal action and a separate civil action are filed subsequent
to a petition for a writ of amparo, the latter shall be consolidated
with the criminal action.
After consolidation, the procedure under this Rule shall continue to
apply to the disposition of the reliefs in the petition.
Sec. 24. Substantive Rights. - This Rule shall not diminish, increase
or modify substantive rights recognized and protected by the
Sec. 25. Suppletory Application of the Rules of Court. - The Rules of
Court shall apply suppletorily insofar as it is not inconsistent with
Sec. 26. Applicability to Pending Cases. - This Rule shall govern cases
involving extralegal killings and enforced disappearances or threats
thereof pending in the trial and appellate courts.
Sec. 27. Effectivity. - This Rule shall take effect on October 24,
2007, following its publication in three (3) newspapers of general