Coming from an extensive backgorund in the practice of law in the Philippines, a group of dynamic and innovative lawyers established the firm in 2013 with the vision of providing full-service litigation to its clients with integrity, excellence and professionalism.
The firm also has a vast experience in corporate matters considering that majority of its lawyers have thrived in the corporate world as legal managers and corporate secretaries to different multinational companies prior to establishing the firm.
In the process, the firm has established working partnerships with several government agencies such as the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Bureau of Customs (BOC), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Intellectual Property Office (IPO), Philippine National Police (PNP), the National Bureau of Investigations (NBI), National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), which have become necessary in most of the legal cases of their clients.
Who We Are
JOSE MANOLO V. GARCIA “JOEY”
FOUNDING AND MANAGING PARTNER
Jose Manolo has been in the practice of law since he was admitted to the Philippine Bar in 2003. Even as a student, he began working as a paralegal in MERCADO AGUILARDO ACERON & ASSOCIATES, Makati City. After he passed the bar, he continued to work in another law firm, PASTELERO LAW OFFICES, Ortigas Center, Pasig City, where he actively engaged in the practice of law honing his skills as a litigator specializing in the field of commercial law, intellectual property, arbitration, but at the same time handling civil, criminal and labor cases for clients.
He continued his career in the corporate world working in COMGLASCO AG Corp. as Chief Legal Counsel for 10 years. As a Chief Legal Counsel, he was in-charge of all the legal issues of the company. He acted as counsel for all the cases filed against and by the company. He personally appeared in courts and any other quasi-judicial agency of the government, prepared all the pleadings and legal documents required from the company, prepared and reviewed all contracts entered into by the company, and coordinated with all the other departments of the company on any legal matter especially the credit and collection team.
He became the Officer-in-Charge of the human resources and administration department and the credit and collection department. In both instances, he reported directly to the President, Vice-Presidents and the members of the Board of Directors of the company.
Also as the legal head, Joey supervised the entire legal department in the preparation of pleadings, handling the retained lawyers of the company, appeared in courts for the cases handled by the legal department, assisted the handling lawyers in the preparation of the cases to be filed, and in general perform the job of a lawyer for and on behalf of the company. He was in charge of all corporate matters for the head office and the fifty branches all over the Philippines.
Apart from his responsibilities to his clients, Joey has also engaged in volunteer/pro bono lawyering for an international NGO, International Justice Mission (www.ijm.org). As a volunteer lawyer he actively prosecutes cases for victims of child abuse, child trafficking and child labor. He has been a volunteer since 2009.
Joey has been married for 22 years to his wife and partner in the firm, Lisa, who is a human rights lawyer and a staunch child rights advocate. Lisa has been actively practicing criminal and civil law having as specialization child sexual abuse, human trafficking, child labor, online sexual exploitation of children and all other cases relating to child rights violations. They have one child, their son, Elijah, who is currently studying at the Ateneo De Manila University.
NELISA C. GUEVARA - GARCIA "LISA"
Lisa graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a Bachelor of Science Major in Microbiology. She moved on to earn her Juris Doctor Degree in the Faculty of Civil law of the same university. Lisa was admitted to the Philippine Bar in 2003.
Lisa is currently working as the Director of National Prosecution Development for International Justice Mission Philippines (www.osec.ijm.org). In this role, Lisa is responsible for delivering the IJM Philippines’ Online Sexual Exploitation of Children (OSEC) Program’s Prosecution Outcomes. In the performance of these functions, she must ensure the five domains of sustainability (Infrastructure, Staffing, Financial Sustainability, Performance, Policies) in the prosecution pillar are functional by the end of the program. She is also tasked to ensure alignment between IJM Philippines’ national program and regional-local programs in coordination with the Directors of the program offices.
Prior to this role, she served as the Executive Head of Prosecution Development in the Manila Field Office. She led a team of lawyers who prosecute cases of OSEC alongside public prosecutors through collaborative casework. Together they develop innovative prosecution strategies by testing legal principles and existing case law while building the capacity of government partners toward system reform. Throughout her time with IJM, Lisa has actively prosecuted both child sexual abuse and commercial sexual exploitation cases in her own capacity as private prosecutor, resulting in 52 case convictions of 45 perpetrators within 7 years as Special Counsel for Intervention and Senior Special Counsel (Anti-Human Trafficking Specialist) for the Manila Legal Interventions Department. Three of these case convictions were further affirmed in the Supreme Court adding to the growing jurisprudence on Human Trafficking in the Philippines. To date, the Manila Prosecution Development Team has achieved 120 perpetrator convictions, 52 of which are OSEC convictions under her leadership since 2016. Lisa also serves as a resource person for various trainings, conferences and other speaking engagements both locally and internationally.
In 2020, Lisa led her team in the conceptualization and publication of the Compendium of Legal Resources for the Prosecution of Online Sexual Exploitation of Children (OSEC) in the Philippines. It is the first of its kind in the realm of OSEC Prosecution in the Philippines. The said publication was officially endorsed by Undersecretary Atty. Emmeline Aglipay-Villar of the DOJ Inter-Agency Council Task Force (IACAT) for the use of government prosecutors in the prosecution of this crime.
Lisa has been with IJM for more than 15 years and in the practice of law for almost 20 years. Prior to IJM, Lisa worked with the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines (CHRP) under the Instruments Monitoring Office and Government Linkages Office where she was tasked to monitor, review and comment on different international instruments and laws based on their applicability to domestic laws of the Philippines. Lisa was also involved with the Child Rights Center where she assisted in the investigation of child rights cases likewise providing legal advice and facilitating the filing of complaints with the Department of Justice. While working with the CHRP, Lisa also participated in and documented several international conferences and workshops hosted by different international human rights organizations.
ORLIE A. ELAURIA “ORLIE”
Orlie finished Political Science and Law in UE Manila. He was admitted to the Philippine Bar in 2004 and is a member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines. Since his admission to the Philippine Bar, Mr. Elauria has fully devoted his time to litigation and other related practice areas.
In litigation, he has handled cases involving civil law, criminal law, labor law, administrative and commercial law. He has also handled issues involving corporate and intra-corporate disputes, collection cases and other commercial bank related cases, intellectual property, applications for provisional remedies, land titles and registration cases, judicial and extra-judicial summary of estates, family law cases (adoption and nullity of marriage) and a variety of other cases.
Recently, he has been advising clients regarding estate planning and how to minimize their payment of estate tax as a form of tax avoidance which is legal and allow by law.
Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Elauria had his taste of the corporate world wherein he served as in-house legal counsel of AG Pieco Corp. and Comglasco AG Corp. and handled various issues and cases related to the daily operations of the corporation.
Blessed with a beautiful wife who is a registered nurse and a son, Mr. Elauria is living a contented life. His is into mountain biking as his latest hobby aside from playing basketball. Orlie with his family would always find time to go to church on Sundays.
CHRIS PAOLO R. RUANTO “CHRIS”
Chris passed the bar in 2008. He took his Bachelor of Science in Commerce Major in Marketing and Bachelor of Laws from San Beda College, Manila. As a partner, he specializes in corporate law. Likewise, he represents clients (corporations, its officers and individuals) in:
He provides legal advice to clients regarding company policy (HRD and Credit and Collection concerns) and renders legal opinion for the clients’ business activities and internal corporate matters. He exercises supervision over the clients’ Legal Department. He represents clients before quasi-judicial bodies and government agencies (Bureau of Internal Revenue, Bureau of Customs, Department of Trade and Industry, Securities and Exchange Commission, National Labor Relations Commission, Registry of Deeds, Provincial and City Local Governments). He drafts and reviewed pleadings, motions, contracts, memoranda, demand letters and other correspondence for clients.
Prior to joining the firm, he was also in the corporate world as an assistant legal in-house counsel of Comglasco AG. Corporation. Where he: