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Offer of Compromise in Criminal Cases


Sec. 27. Offer of compromise not admissible. — x x x

In criminal cases, except those involving quasi-offenses (criminal negligence) or those allowed by law to be compromised, an offer of compromised by the accused may be received in evidence as an implied admission of guilt.

A plea of guilty later withdrawn, or an unaccepted offer of a plea of guilty to lesser offense, is not admissible in evidence against the accused who made the plea or offer.

An offer to pay or the payment of medical, hospital or other expenses occasioned by an injury is not admissible in evidence as proof of civil or criminal liability for the injury. (Rule 130, Rules of Court)


● In criminal cases, the general rule is an offer of compromise is admissible. However, it is inadmissible under the following cases:
  1. quasi-offenses (criminal negligence)
  2. cases allowed by law to be compromised (e.g. BIR can compromise tax cases)
  3. plea of guilty later withdrawn
  4. unaccepted offer to plead guilty to a lesser offense
  5. offer to pay or payment of expenses occasioned by an injury
  6. the offer is made only to avoid the consequences of litigation

● An offer of compromise is an implied admission of guilt, although the accused may be permitted to prove that such offer was not made under consciousness of guilt but merely to avoid the risks of criminal action against him.

●While rape cases can in effect be compromised by actual marriage of the parties since criminal liability is extinguished, an offer to compromise for a monetary consideration, and not to marry the victim, is an implied admission of guilt.

● An offer of marriage by the accused, during the investigation of the rape case, is also an admission of guilt. (People v. Valdez)

● Criminal cases involving criminal negligence, or the quasi-offenses contemplated in RPC 365, are allowed to be compromised under the amendment to this section, hence an offer of settlement is not an implied admission of guilt.

● Good Samaritan Doctrine: An offer to pay or the actual payment of the medical, hospital or other expenses by reason of the victim’s injuries is not admissible to prove civil or criminal liability therefor.

●In prosecutions for violation of the internal revenue laws, such offers of compromise are not admissible in evidence as the law provides that the payment of any internal revenue tax may be compromised, and all criminal violations may likewise be compromised, except those already filed in court and those involving fraud.

● Generally, an offer of compromise in a criminal case is admissible as evidence against the party making it. However, the accused may show that the offer was made merely to avoid the inconvenience of imprisonment or some other reason justifying a claim that the offer was not an admission of guilt. (People vs. Godoy)

● Plea for forgiveness is analogous to an attempt to compromise, and an offer of compromise by accused may be received in evidence as an implied admission of guilt. (People vs. Lambid) 

● Offer of compromise by accused may be received in evidence as an implied admission of guilt in criminal cases EXCEPT in cases involving quasi-offenses or criminal negligence or those allowed by law to be compromised. (People vs. Batulanon) 

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