SyCipLaw Bulletin # 13: ECQ over Metro Manila Extended Until May 15; Other COVID-19 Issuances

The following updates, among others, were covered by SyCipLaw’s bulletin to its clients:

A. Pursuant to an announcement made by the Philippine President on April 24, 2020, the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) over places considered to be COVID-19 high-risk areas, such as Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Cebu, and Davao City, is extended until May 15. The categorization of Tarlac, Zambales, Cebu, and Davao City as high-risk areas will “be reviewed and may change before April 30.” Prior to this announcement, the ECQ over Metro Manila was scheduled to end on April 30, 2020.

Moderate and low-risk areas will be placed under general community quarantine (GCQ) starting May 1, and the GCQ “may be lifted by May 15, should no change in the risk-level occur.”

B. The BIR has issued Revenue Memorandum Circular (RMC) No. 42-2020 dated April 6, 2020 which consolidates filing and payment instructions for 2019 Annual Income Tax Returns via both online and offline channels.

The BIR has also issued RMC No. 44-2020 dated April 17, 2020 to provide temporary relief to “Resident Foreign Missions, RFM personnel, and dependents who will apply for renewal of expired VCs and VICs during the ECQ.”

C. The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) has issued IPOPHL Memorandum Circular No. 2020-010, which provides general guidelines and extended deadlines for the filing of written third party observation (TPO) for Invention Applications and Adverse Information (AI) for Utility Model and Industrial Design Applications, for Personal Protective Equipment, Medical/Health Care Equipment/Devices, and Pharmaceutical Products.

D. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) provides an alternative mode alternative mode of complying with the requirements for distribution of notices and other documents for annual stockholders’ meeting (ASM)

The SEC is extending the deadline for the submission of the integrated annual corporate governance report “in recognition of the impact of COVID-19 on the business sector.”

he bulletin was prepared by SyCipLaw partners Carina C. Laforteza and Vida M. Panganiban-Alindogan, with the assistance of legal assistants Severino Miguel B. Sanchez and Kathleen Mae L. Nieto.

The full text of the bulletin can be found below: