Access to justice : human rights abuses involving corporations in Philippines

Issue: Business and Human Rights
Document Type: Thematic Report
Date: 2010

This study surveys the international and domestic legal framework applicable in engaging the liability of business enterprises for human rights and environmental abuses occurring in the Philippines.

The domestic law of the Philippines does provide, substantively and procedurally, for some measure of judicial and/or administrative remedy for victims of human rights abuse by corporations and other business enterprises.  Nonetheless, as the study illustrates, access to justice for such victims remains highly limited.  Major obstacles include the murky or impenetrable corporate structures of alleged abusive companies; prohibitive fees imposed on claimants, and disincentives for pursuing remedies, which may arise from incidence or threats of violence, reprisals, or counter-litigation.  Despite their prevalence, these obstacles are not always insurmountable. By reducing fees and processing times of human rights claims, providing training on technical elements of human rights law to the judiciary, and reforming law to enforce corporate transparency, the study suggests that the Filipino justice system can be modified to more effectively provide for adequate remedies in cases of corporate human rights abuse.

Philippines-access justice-publication-2010 (full text in English, PDF)

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