Emerico O. De Guzman
Senior Partner
Transactions/Cases Handled: 
Mr. De Guzman has been actively involved in conciliation, mediation and arbitration of labor/employment disputes. He has also handled cases involving executive and managerial employees. As part of his practice, he has litigated civil as well as criminal cases involving employees. Mr. De Guzman has also advised on the labor aspects of mergers and acquisition and privatization plans. He has vast knowledge of outsourcing, including the preparation, review and audit of outsourcing arrangements and service level agreements. He also has invaluable experience on employee pension plans and rules. With his vast labor knowledge, Mr. de Guzman is a popular lecturer on employment law and jurisprudence and is frequently requested to conduct in-house seminars and lectures on labor issues. Mr. De Guzman handled the Labor aspect of the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) Privatization which brought about the successful transition from government service to private employment of thousands of affected employees. He successfully litigated a number of suits involving employers where the Supreme Court upheld the exercise of management prerogatives, including the enforcement of Company rules, the administration of compensation schemes, the resolution of wage distortions, and the resort to outsourcing arrangements.
Education/Academic Attainments: 
Mr. De Guzman obtained his Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of the Philippines in 1982. He completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from the University of the Philippines in 1977. Mr. De Guzman attended the Academy of American and International Law, Center for American and International Law in Dallas/Plano, Texas, USA in 2005. He was the Philippine delegate to the Seminar on Labor Management Cooperation, Asian Productivity Organization in Tokyo Japan in November 2000. He has also attended the Program on Negotiations at the National University of Singapore sponsored by the Kennedy School of Government/Conflict Management Group in Singapore in April 1999.
Law Professorial Positions & Legal Publications: 
Mr. De Guzman is the author of the Philippine chapter of the Handbook on Global Recruiting, Screening, Testing and Interviewing Criteria, published by Kluwer Law International/International Bar Association; the Philippine Chapter of the Guide to International Labor and Employment Law, published by Lexis Nexis/Littler Mendelson Global; and the Philippine chapter of Restrictive Covenants and Trade Secrets in Employment Law, published by the American Bar Association. Mr. De Guzman is likewise a regular lecturer of the Center for Human Resource Management (CHRM) of the People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP).
Professional Membership & Affiliations: 
Mr. De Guzman is an active member of the Philippine Bar Association (PBA) having been a member of its Board of Directors since 2007. He is currently a Vice-President of PBA. In 2006, Mr. De Guzman was elected President of the People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP) and from 2003-2005, he was the Managing Editor of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Journal. Currently, Mr. De Guzman is also the Vice-Chairman of the Employment and Immigration Committee of the Inter-Pacific Bar Association (IPBA). Since 2007, he has been Chair of the Human Resources Working Group of the National Competitiveness Council (NCC). In June 2011, he was appointed by President Aquino as one of the Employer Representatives to the National Tripartite Industrial Peace Council (TIPC). Mr. De Guzman is likewise a Member of the Executive Committee of the Southwestern Institute for International and Comparative Law based in Dallas, Texas.

SEMINARS/LECTURES CONDUCTED:

  • Labor Dispute Resolution and Settlement in the Philippines, 3rd Asia Pacific HRM Conference, Singapore, March 1994
  • An Insight and Situationer on the Philippine Labor Scene, Seminar on Contracting and Joint Ventures in the Philippines, Center for Management Technology, Kuala Lumpur, November 1996
  • Enforcement of Restrictive Covenants, Asialaw Intellectual Property Forum, Hongkong, November 2006
  • Employment Law in the Philippines, Seminar on Asian Employment Law by the Fortress Intelligence, Singapore, September 2007
  • Current Issues on Philippine Employment Law, Seminar on Essentials of Employment Law (Malaysia and Asia) 2008 by the Ahrals Center for Business Forums, Kuala Lumpur, August 2008
  • Emerging Challenges for People Managers in Call Centers, International Contact Center Conference, Manila, September 2010
  • Notes on Philippine Employment and Productivity, 47th Annual Conference – People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP), Cebu City, October 2010

AWARDS AND CITATIONS:

In March 2008, Mr. De Guzman was appointed as Head of ACCRALAW’s Labor and Employment Department.  In June 2008, ACCRALAW was adjudged the 2008 Firm of the Year for Employment Practice in the Philippines by the Asian Counsel.

Mr. De Guzman has been consistently recognized by Chambers Asia as one of the Leading Individuals for Employment law practice in the Philippines, adding in its 2010 edition, that he “is lauded ‘as a main player in labour and employment; his adept all-round skills are a valuable asset’ ”.

In the 2010/2011 and 2011/12/13 editions of the Asia Pacific Legal 500 as well as the 2011-2013 editions of Chambers Asia-Pacific, Mr. De Guzman was again listed as one of the Leading individuals for Employment.  The Legal 500 Asia Pacific’s 2014 edition similarly recognized him as a Leading individual for Employment, crediting him with “strong fundamentals in terms of knowledge of the law and extensive experience in labour litigation”.

In 2015, Legal 500 Asia Pacific cited Mr. De Guzman as a "Leading Lawyer" in the Practice Area of Employment. He was also recommended in the Editorial in the Practice Area of Employment.

Asialaw Leading Lawyers 2015 has identified Mr. de Guzman as one of the most highly acclaimed legal experts in the field of Labor and Employment.