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Chapter 2.

Proof of Filiation
Art. 172. The filiation of legitimate children is established by any of the following:

(1) The record of birth appearing in the civil register or a final


judgment; or

(2) An admission of legitimate filiation in a public document or a


private handwritten instrument and signed by the parent
concerned.
In the absence of the foregoing evidence, the legitimate filiation
shall be proved by:
(1) The open and continuous possession of the status of a
legitimate child; or
(2) Any other means allowed by the Rules of Court and special
laws. (265a, 266a, 267a)

Proofs of filiation:
1. Primary evidence:
a. Record of birth;
b. Admission in a public document or in a private handwritten
instrument and signed by the parent concerned.
2. Secondary evidence:
a. Proof of continuous open possession of the status of a
legitimate child;
b. Any other evidence admissible under the Rules of Court or the
law.
NOTE: SECONDARY EVIDENCE IS NOT ADMISSIBLE IF THE
PRIMARY EVIDENCE EXISTS.
Record of birth the books making up the civil register and all documents
relating thereto shall be considered public documents and shall be prima
facie evidence of the truths of the facts therein contained. BUT, if the
alleged father did not intervene in the making of the birth certificate, the
putting of his name by the mother or doctor or registrar is void; signature of
the alleged father is necessary.
Admission in writing A parent may admit legitimate filiation in a
document duly acknowledged before a notary public, with the proper
formalities, so as to become public and be admissible in suits; or also in a

private handwritten document signed by the parent concerned. (e.g.


notarial will, holographic will {a will entirely handwritten, dated and signed
by the testator -the person making the will- but not signed by required
witnesses}, a letter to a person in which the alleged father admitted that
this is his child and signed).
Possession of status this is the concurrence of facts which indicate the
relation of filiation between an individual and the family to which he claims
to belong. The possession of status must be of some long duration as may
be implied from the word continuous. Of these facts, the most important
are:
a.
That the individual has always borne the surname of the
supposed father (nomen - name);
b.
That the father has treated him as his legitimate child, and in
such capacity has attended to his education, maintenance and
future (tractatus treatment);
c.
That the individual has been constantly recognized as such
child in society and by the family (fama fame);
NOTE: All those enumerated above (a, b & c) must be present.
Any other means allowed by the Rules of Court and special lawsmay include the childs baptismal certificate, a judicial admission, the family
bible wherein the name of the child is entered, common reputation
respecting pedigree, admission by silence, testimonies of witnesses, and
other kinds of proof admissible under Rule 130 of the Revised Rules of
Court.
Baptismal certificate The baptismal certificate is not proof of filiation. It
only proves the fact of the administration of the sacrament or the act of
baptism on the day specified. But it is not proof of the veracity of the
statements made therein regarding he relatives or parents of the person
baptized. Although allowed by the Rules of Court, it has scant proof of
filiation. It is only proof to the sacrament of baptism but not the proof of
filiation of the child.

FERNANDEZ VS. COURT OF APPEALS


230 SCRA 130
FACTS:
Violeta Esguerra, single, mother and guardian ad litem of petitioners Claro
Antonio Fernandez and John Paul Fernandez, pointed to respondent Carlito S.
Fernandez as the father of the petitioners. She claimed that she and Carlito started
their illicit sexual relationship six months after their first meeting sometime in
1983. The tryst resulted in the birth of petitioners Claro on 1984 and John Paul on
1985. Violeta averred that they were married in civil rights in October 1983. She
further claimed that she did not know that Carlito was married until the birth of her

two children. In March 1985, however, she discovered that the marriage license
which they used was spurious.
Petitioners presented the following documentary evidence: certificates of live birth,
identifying respondent as their father, the baptismal certificate of Claro which also
states that his father is respondent, photographs of respondent taken during the
baptism of Claro; and pictures of respondent and Claro taken at the home of Violeta
Esguerra. Petitioners likewise presented witnesses Cantoria and Dr. Villanueva and
Cu who told the trial court that Violeta Esguerra had, at different times, introduced
the respondent to them as her husband; and Fr. Fernandez who testified that
Carlito was the one who presented himself as the father of petitioner Claro during
the latters baptism.
Carlito denied Violetas allegations and averred that he only served as sponsor in
the baptism of Claro. Such claim was corroborated by the testimony of Pagtakhan,
an officemate who also stood as sponsor to the said baptism.
The trial court ruled in favor of the petitioners. The CA reversed the decision of the
trial court.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the documentary evidence offered by the petitioners was
insufficient to prove their filiations
HELD:
No, they were insufficient. First, petitioners cannot rely on the photographs
showing the presence of the private respondent in the baptism of the petitioner.
These photographs are far from proofs that private respondent is the father of
petitioner Claro. As explained, he was merely a sponsor to the baptism. Second,
the pictures taken in the house of Violeta showing respondent showering affection
to Claro fall short of the evidence required to prove paternity. Third, the baptismal
certificate of petitioner Claro naming respondent as his father has scant evidentiary
value because there is no showing that private respondent participated in its
preparation. Fourth, the certificates of live birth of the petitioners identifying
respondent as their father are not also competent evidence on the issue of
paternity because, again, the records do not show that private respondent had a
hand in the preparation thereof.
The petition is dismissed and the decision of CA is affirmed.

FACTS:

FERNANDEZ VS. FERNANDEZ


363 SCRA 811

Spouses Dr. Jose Fernandez and Generosa de Venecia were childless. So


they purchased from a certain Miliang a baby boy they named as Rodolfo
Fernandez. Jose died in 1982, leaving his wife and Rodolfo an estate consisting of a
parcel of land and 2 storey residential building. In 1989, Generosa and Rodolfo
executed a deed of extra-judicial partition dividing and allocating to themselves
properties of the estate. On the same day, Generosa executed a deed of absolute
sale in favor of Eddie Fernandez, Rodolfos son, over the land and the residential
building which was allocated to her. After learning the transaction, the nephews
and nieces of the deceased Jose Fernandez filed an action to declare the extrajudicial partition of estate and deed of sale void ab initio. They alleged that Rodolfo
and Eddie took advantage of the total physical and mental incapacity of Generosa,
and that Rodolfo is not the son of the spouses. Meanwhile, Rodolfo presented his
baptismal certificate and an application for recognition of backpay rights by Jose.
The RTC declared the deeds null and void. In so ruling, the trial court found that
Rodolfo was not a legitimate or a legally adopted child of the spouses Fernandez.
The CA affirmed the trial courts judgment.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Rodolfos baptismal certificate is admissible as proof of
filiation
HELD:
While ones legitimacy can be questioned only in a direct action, this
doctrine has no application in the instant case considering that respondents claim
was that petitioner Rodolfo was not born to the spouses Fernandez. It is not a
situation wherein they deny that Rodolfo was a child of their uncles wife.
Petitioner Rodolfo failed to prove his filiation with the deceased spouses Fernandez.
While baptismal certificates may be considered public documents, they are
evidence only to prove the administration of the sacraments on the dates therein
specified, but not the veracity of the statements or declarations made therein with
respect to his kinsfolk. Neither the family portrait offered in evidence establishes a
sufficient proof of filiation. Pictures do not constitute proof of filiation.
As to the application for recognition of backpay, the public document contemplated
in Art. 172 of the FC refer to the written admission of filiation embodied in a pubic
document purposely executed as an admission of filiation and not as obtaining in
this case wherein the public document was executed as an application for the
recognition of rights to backpay.
Petitioner Rodolfo is not a child by nature of the spouses Fernandez and not a legal
heir of Dr. Jose Fernandez, thus the subject deed of extra-judicial settlement of the

estate of Dr. Jose Fernandez between Generosa and Rodolfo is null and void insofar
as Rodolfo is concerned.
LABAGALA VS. SANTIAGO
371 SCRA 360
FACTS:
Jose Santiago owned a parcel of land in Manila. Alleging that Jose had
fraudulently registered it in his name alone, his sisters (now respondents herein)
sued Jose for recovery of 2/3 share of the property. When Jose died intestate,
respondents filed a complaint for recovery of title, ownership, and possession
against herein petitioner, Ida Labagala to recover from her 1/3 portion of said
property pertaining to Jose but which came into petitioners sole possession upon
Joses death.
Respondents alleged that Joses share in the property belongs to them by operation
of law, because they are the only legal heirs of their brother, who died intestate
and without issue. They claimed that the deed of sale of the property executed by
their brother to petitioner is a forgery.
Petitioner claimed that her true name is not Ida Labagala but Ida Santiago. She
claimed to be the daughter of Jose and thus entitled to his share in the subject
property. She argued that the purported sale was in fact a donation to her.
The trial court ruled in favor of petitioner. The CA reversed the decision of the trial
court.
The appellate court noted that the birth certificate of Ida Labagala
presented by respondents showed that Ida was born of different parents, not Jose
and his wife.
ISSUE:
Whether or not petitioner has adduced preponderant evidence to prove that
she is the daughter of the late Jose Santiago
HELD:
Art. 263 of the CC refers to an action to impugn the legitimacy of a child, to
assert and prove that a person is not a mans child by his wife. However, the
present case is not one impugning petitioners legitimacy. Respondents are
asserting not merely that petitioner is not a legitimate child of Jose, but that she is
not a child of Jose at all. Moreover, the present action is one for recovery of title
and possession, and thus outside the scope of Article 263 on prescriptive periods.
The certificate of record of birth plainly states that Ida was the child of the spouses
Leon Labagala and Cornelia Cabrigas. Therefore, this certificate is proof of the
filiation of Ida. If he birth certificate presented in evidence is not hers, then where
is hers? She did not present any though it would have been the easiest thing to do
considering that according to her baptismal certificate she was born in Manila in
1969. But then, a baptismal certificate is not a proof of the parentage of the

baptized person. This document can only prove the identity of the baptized, the
date and place of her baptism, the identities of the baptismal sponsors and the
priest who administered the sacrament, nothing more.
Further, petitioner, who claims to be Ida Santiago, has the same birthdate as Ida
Labagala. The similarity is too uncanny to be a mere coincidence. Not being a
child of Jose, it follows that petitioner can not inherit from him through intestate
succession. Clearly, there is no valid sale in this case; Jose did not have the right to
transfer ownership of the entire property to petitioner since 2/3 thereof belonged to
his sisters. Neither may the purported deed of sale be a valid deed of donation.

LOCSIN VS. LOCSIN


G.R. No. 146737

December 10, 2001


FATCS:
Juan Locsin, Jr., herein respondent, filed with the RTC a petition praying that
he be appointed administrator of the intestate estate of the deceased Juan Locsin,
Sr. He alleged that he is an acknowledged natural child of the deceased and that
he is the only surviving legal heir of the decedent. The heirs of Juan Locsin, Sr.,
herein petitioners, filed an opposition averring that respondent is neither a child
nor an acknowledged natural child of the former.
To support his claim, respondent submitted a machine copy of his certificate of live
birth found in the bound volume of birth records in the office of the Local Civil
Registrar. To prove its existence and authenticity, he presented the Local Civil
Registrar as witness. He also offered in evidence a photograph showing him and
his mother in front of a coffin bearing Juan Locsins dead body. Respondent claims
that the photograph shows that he and his mother have been recognized as family
members of the deceased.
In their oppositions, petitioners claimed that the certificate of live birth is spurious.
They submitted a certified true copy of the certificate of live birth found in the Civil
Registrar General, Metro Manila, indicating that the birth of respondent was
reported by his mother and that the same does not contain the signature of the
late Juan Locsin.
The trial court found the certificate of live birth and the photograph sufficient
proofs of respondents illegitimate filiation. The CA affirmed the order of the trial
court.
ISSUE:

Which of the two documents, the certificate of live birth from the local civil
registrar or certificate of live birth from the civil registrar general, is genuine?

have been filed during the lifetime of the alleged father to give him opportunity to
either affirm or deny the childs filiation. The CA reversed the RTC's decision.

HELD:

ISSUE:
Whether or not the respondent is barred from filing an action for recognition

The due recognition of an illegitimate child in a record of birth, a will, a


statement before a court of record, or in any authentic writing is, in itself a
consummated act of acknowledgment of the child, and no further court action is
required. In fact, any authentic writing is treated not just a ground for compulsory
recognition, it is in itself a voluntary recognition that does not require a separate
action for judicial approval.
A birth certificate is a formidable piece of evidence prescribed by both the CC and
the Art 172, FC, for purposes of recognition and filiation. However, birth certificate
offers only prima facie evidence of filiation and may be refuted by contrary
evidence. Its evidentiary worth cannot be sustained where there exists strong,
complete and conclusive proof of its falsity or nullity. In this case, respondents
Certificate of Live Birth entered in the records of the Local Civil Registry has all the
badges of nullity. Without doubt, the authentic copy on file in that office was
removed and substituted with a falsified Certificate of Live Birth. Where the glaring
discrepancies between the Certificates of Live Birth recorded in the Local Civil
Registry and the copy transmitted to the Civil Registry General, the latter prevails.
What is authentic is the certificate of live birth recorded in the Civil Registry
General.
A persons photograph with his mother near the coffin of the alleged father cannot
and will not constitute proof of filiation, lest that would encourage and sanction
fraudulent claims. Anybody can have a picture taken while standing before a coffin
with others and thereafter utilize it in claiming the estate of the deceased.
BERNABE VS. ALEJO
374 SCRA 181
FACTS:
The late Fiscal Bernabe allegedly fathered a son named Adrian Bernabe on
September 18, 1981 with his secretary Carolina Alejo. Fiscal Bernabe died on
August 13, 1993, while his wife Rosalina died on December 3 of the same year,
leaving Ernestina as the sole surviving heir.
On May 16, 1994, Carolina, in behalf of Adrian filed a complaint praying that Adrian
be declared acknowledged illegitimate son of Fiscal Bernabe and be given his share
of the deceaseds estate, which is being held by Ernestina. The RTC dismissed the
complaint. Citing Article 175 of the Family Code, the RTC held that the death of the
putative father had barred the action and that since the putative father had not
acknowledged or recognized Adrian in writing, the action for recognition should

HELD:
The SC does not agree with the contention that the respondent is barred
from filing an action, that Article 285 of the Civil Code has been supplanted by the
provisions of the FC. The 2 exceptions provided under Art. 285 have however been
omitted by Arts 172, 173 and 175 of the Family Code. Under the new law, an action
for the recognition of an illegitimate child must be brought within the lifetime of the
alleged parent. The FC makes no distinction on whether the former was still a
minor when the latter died. Nonetheless, the FC provides the caveat that rights
that have already vested prior to this enactment should not be prejudiced or
impaired (Art 255). Art. 285 is a substantive law, as it gives Adrian the right to file
his petition for recognition within four years from attaining majority. Therefore, the
FC cannot impair or take Adrians right to file an action for recognition, because
that right had already vested prior to its enactment.
Petition is denied.
DELA ROSA, et al. VS. VDA DE DAMIAN
January 27, 2006

FACTS:
One of those claiming the estate of the late spouses Rustia is Guillerma
Rustia who claimed to be the illegitimate child of Guillerma Rustia where she
sought recognition on 2 grounds: first, compulsory recognition through the open
and continuous possession of the status of an illegitimate child and second,
voluntary recognition through authentic writing. As proof of the latter, she
presented the report card that identified Guillermo Rustia, named Guillerma as one
of their children.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Guillerma can still claim compulsory acknowledgement from
Guillermo Rustia
HELD:

There was apparently no doubt that she possessed the status of an


illegitimate child from her birth until the death of her putative father Guillermo
Rustia. However, this did not constitute acknowledgement but a mere ground by
which she could have compelled acknowledgment through the courts. Furthermore,
any (judicial) action for compulsory acknowledgment has dual limitation: the

lifetime of the child and the lifetime of the putative parent. On the death of either,
the action for compulsory can no loner be filed. In this case, Guillermas right to
claim compulsory acknowledgement prescribed upon the death of Guillermo Rustia
on February 28, 1974.
The claim of voluntary recognition must likewise fail. An authentic writing for
purposes of voluntary recognition is understood as a genuine or indubitable writing
of the parent. This includes a public instrument or a private writing admitted by the
father to be his. Did Guillermas report card from the University of Sto. Tomas and
Josefa Delgados obituary prepared by Guillermo qualify as authentic writings under
the Civil Code? Unfortunately, it did not. The report card did not bear the signature
of Guillermo Rustia. The fact that his name appears there, as her parent/guardian
holds no weight since he had no participation in its preparation. Similarly, while
witnesses testified that it was Guillermo himself who drafted the notice of death of
Josefa which was published in the Sunday Times on September 2, 1972, that
published obituary was not the authentic writing contemplated by law. What could
have been admitted as an authentic writing was the original manuscript of the
notice, in the handwriting of Guillermo himself and signed by him, not the
newspaper clipping of the obituary. The failure to present the original signed
manuscript was fatal to Guillermos claim.

They met at the lobby and he led her upstairs because he said he wanted the
briefing done at the restaurant at the upper floor. Instead, however, petitioner
opened a hotel room door, led her in, and suddenly embraced her, as he told her
that he was unhappy with his wife and would "divorce" her anytime. He also
claimed he could appoint her as a municipal development coordinator. She
succumbed to his advances. But again she kept the incident to herself.
Sometime in January 1987, when she missed her menstruation, she said she wrote
petitioner that she feared she was pregnant. In another letter in February 1987, she
told him she was pregnant. Petitioner replied in a handwritten letter:
My darling Chris,
Should you become pregnant even unexpectedly, I should have no regret,
because I love you and you love me.
Let us rejoice a common responsibility you and I shall take care of it and
let him/her see the light of this beautiful world.
We know what to do to protect our honor and integrity.
Just relax and be happy, if true.
With all my love,
Ninoy

VERCELES VS. POSADA


522 SCRA 518

2/4/87

FACTS:

Respondent Maria Clarissa Posada, young lass from the barrio of Pandan,
Catanduanes, sometime in 1986 met a close family friend, petitioner Teofisto I.
Verceles, mayor of Pandan. He then called on the Posadas and at the end of the
visit, offered Clarissa a job. Clarissa accepted petitioners offer and worked as a
casual employee in the mayors office starting on September 1, 1986. From
November 10 to 15 in 1986, with other companions, she accompanied petitioner to
Legaspi City to attend a seminar on town planning.
On November 11, 1986, Clarissa was told by petitioner that they would have lunch
at Mayon Hotel with their companions who had gone ahead. When they reached
the place her companions were nowhere. After petitioner ordered food, he started
making amorous advances on her. She panicked, ran and closeted herself inside a
comfort room where she stayed until someone knocked. Afraid of the mayor, she
kept the incident to herself. She went on as casual employee. One of her tasks was
following-up barangay road and maintenance projects.
On December 22, 1986, on orders of petitioner, she went to Virac, Catanduanes, to
follow up funds for barangay projects. She went to Catanduanes Hotel on
instructions of petitioner who asked to be briefed on the progress of her mission.

Clarissa explained petitioner used an alias "Ninoy" and addressed her as "Chris,"
probably because of their twenty-five (25)-year age gap. In court, she identified
petitioners penmanship which she claims she was familiar with as an employee in
his office. Clarissa presented three other handwritten letters sent to her by
petitioner, two of which were in his letterhead as mayor of Pandan. She also
presented the pictures petitioner gave her of his youth and as a public servant, all
bearing his handwritten notations at the back. On September 23, 1987, she gave
birth to a baby girl, Verna Aiza Posada.
Clarissas mother, Francisca, felt betrayed by petitioner and shamed by her
daughters pregnancy. The Posadas filed a Complaint for Damages coupled with
Support Pendente Lite against petitioner. The trial court issued a judgment in favor
of respondents. CA affirms.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Verna Aiza Posada was an illegitimate child of the petitioner
HELD:

Yes. A perusal of the Complaint shows that although its caption states
"Damages coupled with Support Pendente Lite," Clarissas averments therein all
clearly establish a case for recognition of paternity. The due recognition of an
illegitimate child in a record of birth, a will, a statement before a court of record, or
in any authentic writing is, in itself, a consummated act of acknowledgement of the
child, and no further court action is required. In fact, any authentic writing is
treated not just a ground for compulsory recognition; it is in itself a voluntary
recognition that does not require a separate action for judicial approval.
The letters of petitioner are declarations that lead nowhere but to the conclusion
that he sired Verna Aiza. Although petitioner used an alias in these letters, the
similarity of the penmanship in these letters vis the annotation at the back of
petitioners fading photograph as a youth is unmistakable. Even an inexperienced
eye will come to the conclusion that they were all written by one and the same
person, petitioner, as found by the courts a quo.
Art. 172. The filiation of legitimate children is established by any of the
following:
(1) The record of birth appearing in the civil register or a final judgment; or
(2) An admission of legitimate filiation in a public document or a private
handwritten instrument and signed by the parent concerned.

DELA CRUZ VS. GRACIA


594 SCRA 648
FACTS:
For several months in 2005, then 21-year old petitioner Jenie San Juan Dela
Cruz and then 19-year old Christian Dominique Sto. Tomas Aquino lived together as
husband and wife without the benefit of marriage. They resided in the house of
Dominiques parents. On September 4, 2005, Dominique died. After almost two
months, Jenie, who continued to live with Dominiques parents, gave birth to her
herein co-petitioner minor child Christian Dela Cruz Aquino.
Jenie applied for registration of the childs birth, using Dominiques surname
Aquino, with the Office of the City Civil Registrar in support of which she submitted
the childs Certificate of Live Birth, Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father
(AUSF) which she had executed and signed, and Affidavit of Acknowledgment
executed by Dominiques father Domingo Butch Aquino. Both affidavits attested,
inter alia, that during the lifetime of Dominique, he had continuously acknowledged
his yet unborn child, and that his paternity had never been questioned. Jenie
attached to the AUSF a document entitled AUTOBIOGRAPHY which Dominique,
during his lifetime, wrote in his own handwriting, the pertinent portions of which
read:
AQUINO, CHRISTIAN DOMINIQUE S.T.

In the absence of the foregoing evidence, the legitimate filiation shall be


proved by:
(1) The open and continuous possession of the status of a legitimate child;
or
(2) Any other means allowed by the Rules of Court and special laws.
Art. 175. Illegitimate children may establish their illegitimate filiation in the
same way and on the same evidence as legitimate children.
The action must be brought within the same period specified in Article 173,
except when the action is based on the second paragraph of Article 172, in
which case the action may be brought during the lifetime of the alleged
parent.
The letters are private handwritten instruments of petitioner which establish Verna
Aizas filiation under Article 172 (2) of the Family Code. In addition, the array of
evidence presented by respondents, the dates, letters, pictures and testimonies, to
us, are convincing, and irrefutable evidence that Verna Aiza is, indeed, petitioners
illegitimate child.

AUTOBIOGRAPHY
IM CHRISTIAN DOMINIQUE STO. TOMAS AQUINO, 19 YEARS OF
AGE TURNING 20 THIS COMING OCTOBER 31, 2005.[5] I RESIDE
AT PULANG-LUPA STREET BRGY. DULUMBAYAN, TERESA, RIZAL. I
AM THE YOUNGEST IN OUR FAMILY. I HAVE ONE BROTHER NAMED
JOSEPH BUTCH STO. TOMAS AQUINO. MY FATHERS NAME IS
DOMINGO BUTCH AQUINO AND MY MOTHERS NAME IS RAQUEL
STO. TOMAS AQUINO. x x x.
xxxx
AS OF NOW I HAVE MY WIFE NAMED JENIE DELA CRUZ. WE MET
EACH OTHER IN OUR HOMETOWN, TEREZA RIZAL. AT FIRST WE
BECAME GOOD FRIENDS, THEN WE FELL IN LOVE WITH EACH
OTHER, THEN WE BECAME GOOD COUPLES. AND AS OF NOW SHE
IS PREGNANT AND FOR THAT WE LIVE TOGETHER IN OUR HOUSE
NOW. THATS ALL.

The City Civil Registrar, respondent Ronald Paul S. Gracia, denied Jenies
application for registration of the childs name. Rule 7 of Administrative Order No.
1, Series of 2004 (Implementing Rules and Regulations of Republic Act No. 9255
[An Act Allowing Illegitimate Children to Use the Surname of their Father,
Amending for the Purpose, Article 176 of Executive Order No. 209, otherwise
Known as the Family Code of the Philippines]) provides that:
Rule 7. Requirements for the Child to Use the Surname of the Father
7.1 For Births Not Yet Registered
7.1.1 The illegitimate child shall use the surname of the father if a
public document is executed by the father, either at the back of the
Certificate of Live Birth or in a separate document.
7.1.2 If admission of paternity is made through a private handwritten
instrument, the child shall use the surname of the father, provided the
registration is supported by the following documents:
a. AUSF
b. Consent of the child, if 18 years old and over at the time of the
filing of the document.
c. Any two of the following documents showing clearly the paternity
between the father and the child:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

Employment records
SSS/GSIS records
Insurance
Certification of membership in any organization
Statement of Assets and Liability
Income Tax Return (ITR)

In summary, the child cannot use the surname of his father because he was born
out of wedlock and the father unfortunately died prior to his birth and has no more
capacity to acknowledge his paternity to the child (either through the back of
Municipal Form No. 102 Affidavit of Acknowledgment/Admission of Paternity or
the Authority to Use the Surname of the Father).
Jenie and the child promptly filed a complaint for injunction/registration of name
against respondent. The complaint alleged that the denial of registration of the
childs name is a violation of his right to use the surname of his deceased father
under Article 176 of the Family Code, as amended by Republic Act (R.A.) No. 9255,
which provides:

Article 176. Illegitimate children shall use the surname and shall be under the
parental authority of their mother, and shall be entitled to support in conformity
with this Code. However, illegitimate children may use the surname of their father
if their filiation has been expressly recognized by the father through the record of
birth appearing in the
civil register, or when an admission in a public document
or private handwritten instrument is made by the father. Provided, the father has
the right to institute an action before the regular courts to prove non-filiation
during his lifetime. The legitime of each illegitimate child shall consist of one-half of
the legitime of a legitimate child.
They maintained that the Autobiography executed by Dominique constitutes an
admission of paternity in a private handwritten instrument within the
contemplation of the above-quoted provision of law. The trial court dismissed the
complaint for lack of cause of action as the Autobiography was unsigned, citing
paragraph 2.2, Rule 2 (Definition of Terms) of Administrative Order (A.O.) No. 1,
Series of 2004 (the Rules and Regulations Governing the Implementation of R.A.
9255) which defines private handwritten document through which a father may
acknowledge an illegitimate child as follows: "2.2 Private handwritten instrument
an instrument executed in the handwriting of the father and duly signed by him
where he expressly recognizes paternity to the child." The trial court held that even
if Dominique was the author of the handwritten Autobiography, the same does not
contain any express recognition of paternity.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the unsigned handwritten statement of the deceased father
of minor Chrisitan Dela Cruz can be considered as a recognition of paternity in a
"private, handwritten instrument" within the contemplation of Article 176 of the
Family Code, as amended by R.A. 9255, which entitles the said minor to use his
father's surname
HELD:

Petitioners contend that Article 176 of the Family Code, as amended, does
not expressly require that the private handwritten instrument containing the
putative fathers admission of paternity must be signed by him. They add that the
deceaseds handwritten Autobiography, though unsigned by him, is sufficient, for
the requirement in the above-quoted paragraph 2.2 of the Administrative Order
that the admission/recognition must be duly signed by the father is void as it
unduly expanded the earlier-quoted provision of Article 176 of the Family Code.
Article 176 of the Family Code, as amended by R.A. 9255, permits an illegitimate
child to use the surname of his/her father if the latter had expressly recognized
him/her as his offspring through the record of birth appearing in the civil register,

or through an admission made in a public or private handwritten instrument. The


recognition made in any of these documents is, in itself, a consummated act of
acknowledgment of the childs paternity; hence, no separate action for judicial
approval is necessary.
Article 176 of the Family Code, as amended, does not, indeed, explicitly state that
the private handwritten instrument acknowledging the childs paternity must be
signed by the putative father. This provision must, however, be read in conjunction
with related provisions of the Family Code which require that recognition by the
father must bear his signature, thus:
Art. 175. Illegitimate children may establish their illegitimate filiation
in the same way and on the same evidence as legitimate children.
Art. 172. The filiation of legitimate children is established by any of
the following:
(1) The record of birth appearing in the civil register or a final
judgment; or
(2) An admission of legitimate filiation in a public document or a
private handwritten instrument and signed by the parent
concerned.
That a father who acknowledges paternity of a child through a written instrument
must affix his signature thereon is clearly implied in Article 176 of the Family Code.
Paragraph 2.2, Rule 2 of A.O. No. 1, Series of 2004, merely articulated such
requirement; it did not unduly expand the import of Article 176 as claimed by
petitioners. In the present case, however, special circumstances exist to hold that
Dominiques Autobiography, though unsigned by him, substantially satisfies the
requirement of the law.
First, Dominique died about two months prior to the childs birth. Second, the
relevant matters in the Autobiography, unquestionably handwritten by Dominique,
correspond to the facts culled from the testimonial evidence Jenie proffered. Third,
Jenies testimony is corroborated by the Affidavit of Acknowledgment of
Dominiques father Domingo Aquino and testimony of his brother Joseph Butch
Aquino whose hereditary rights could be affected by the registration of the
questioned recognition of the child. These circumstances indicating Dominiques
paternity of the child give life to his statements in his Autobiography that JENIE
DELA CRUZ is MY WIFE as WE FELL IN LOVE WITH EACH OTHER and NOW SHE
IS PREGNANT AND FOR THAT WE LIVE TOGETHER.
In the case at bar, there is no dispute that the earlier quoted statements in
Dominiques Autobiography have been made and written by him. Taken together

with the other relevant facts extant herein that Dominique, during his lifetime,
and Jenie were living together as common-law spouses for several months in 2005
at his parents house in Pulang-lupa, Dulumbayan, Teresa, Rizal; she was pregnant
when Dominique died on September 4, 2005; and about two months after his
death, Jenie gave birth to the child they sufficiently establish that the child of
Jenie is Dominiques.
In view of the pronouncements herein made, the Court sees it fit to adopt the
following rules respecting the requirement of affixing the signature of the
acknowledging parent in any private handwritten instrument wherein an admission
of filiation of a legitimate or illegitimate child is made:
1) Where the private handwritten instrument is the lone piece of evidence
submitted to prove filiation, there should be strict compliance with the requirement
that the same must be signed by the acknowledging parent; and
2) Where the private handwritten instrument is accompanied by other relevant and
competent evidence, it suffices that the claim of filiation therein be shown to have
been made and handwritten by the acknowledging parent as it is merely
corroborative of such other evidence.
In the eyes of society, a child with an unknown father bears the stigma of dishonor.
It is to petitioner minor childs best interests to allow him to bear the surname of
the now deceased Dominique and enter it in his birth certificate.
NEPOMUCENO VS. LOPEZ
March 18, 2010

FACTS:
Respondent Arhbencel Ann Lopez, represented by her mother Araceli Lopez,
filed a Complaint for recognition and support against petitioner Ben-Hur
Nepomuceno. Born on June 8, 1999, Arhbencel claimed to have been begotten out
of an extramarital affair of petitioner with Araceli; that petitioner refused to affix his
signature on her Certificate of Birth; and that, by a handwritten note, petitioner
nevertheless obligated himself to give her financial support in the amount of
P1,500 on the 15th and 30th days of each month.
Arguing that her filiation to petitioner was established by the handwritten note,
Arhbencel prayed that petitioner be ordered to: (1) recognize her as his child, (2)
give her support pendente lite, and (3) give her adequate monthly financial support
until she reaches the age of majority. Petitioner countered that Araceli had not
proven that he was the father of Arhbencel; and that he was only forced to execute
the handwritten note on account of threats coming from the National Peoples
Army.

The RTC granted Arhbencels prayer for support pendente lite on the basis of
petitioners handwritten note which it treated as "contractual support" since the
issue of Arhbencels filiation had yet to be determined during the hearing on the
merits. Petitioner filed a demurrer to evidence which the trial court granted. The
trial court held that, among other things, Arhbencels Certificate of Birth was not
prima facie evidence of her filiation to petitioner as it did not bear petitioners
signature; that petitioners handwritten undertaking to provide support did not
contain a categorical acknowledgment that Arhbencel is his child; and that there
was no showing that petitioner performed any overt act of acknowledgment of
Arhbencel as his illegitimate child after the execution of the note. CA reversed the
trial courts decision.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Arhbencels claim of paternity and filiation was established
by clear and convincing evidence
HELD:
The relevant provisions of the Family Code that treat of the right to support
are Articles 194 to 196.
Article 194. Support compromises everything indispensable for sustenance,
dwelling, clothing, medical attendance, education and transportation, in
keeping with the financial capacity of the family.1awph!1
The education of the person entitled to be supported referred to in the
preceding paragraph shall include his schooling or training for some
profession, trade or vocation, even beyond the age of majority.
Transportation shall include expenses in going to and from school, or to and
from place of work.
Article 195. Subject to the provisions of the succeeding articles, the
following are obliged to support each other to the whole extent set forth in
the preceding article:
1. The spouses;
2. Legitimate ascendants and descendants;
3. Parents and their legitimate children and the legitimate and
illegitimate children of the latter;
4. Parents and their illegitimate children and the legitimate and
illegitimate children of the latter;
5. Legitimate brothers and sisters, whether of the full or half-blood.

Article 196. Brothers and sisters not legitimately related, whether of the full
or half-blood, are likewise bound to support each other to the full extent set
forth in Article 194, except only when the need for support of the brother or
sister, being of age, is due to a cause imputable to the claimant's fault or
negligence.
Arhbencels demand for support, being based on her claim of filiation to petitioner
as his illegitimate daughter, falls under Article 195(4). As such, her entitlement to
support from petitioner is dependent on the determination of her filiation.
In establisihing filiation, the relevant provisions of the Family Code provide as
follows:
ART. 175. Illegitimate children may establish their illegitimate filiation in the
same way and on the same evidence as legitimate children.
ART. 172. The filiation of legitimate children is established by any of the
following:
(1) The record of birth appearing in the civil register or a final
judgment; or
(2) An admission of legitimate filiation in a public document or a
private handwritten instrument and signed by the parent concerned.
In the absence of the foregoing evidence, the legitimate filiation shall be
proved by:
(1) The open and continuous possession of the status of a legitimate
child; or
(2) Any other means allowed by the Rules of Court and special laws.
The issue of paternity still has to be resolved by such conventional evidence as the
relevant incriminating verbal and written acts by the putative father. Under Article
278 of the New Civil Code, voluntary recognition by a parent shall be made in the
record of birth, a will, a statement before a court of record, or in any authentic
writing. To be effective, the claim of filiation must be made by the putative father
himself and the writing must be the writing of the putative father. A notarial
agreement to support a child whose filiation is admitted by the putative father was
considered acceptable evidence. Letters to the mother vowing to be a good
father to the child and pictures of the putative father cuddling the child
on various occasions, together with the certificate of live birth, proved
filiation. However, a student permanent record, a written consent to a father's
operation, or a marriage contract where the putative father gave consent, cannot
be taken as authentic writing. Standing alone, neither a certificate of baptism nor
family pictures are sufficient to establish filiation.

In the present case, Arhbencel relies, in the main, on the handwritten note
executed by petitioner which reads:

Manila, Aug. 7, 1999


I, Ben-Hur C. Nepomuceno, hereby undertake to give and provide financial
support in the amount of P1,500.00 every fifteen and thirtieth day of each
month for a total of P3,000.00 a month starting Aug. 15, 1999, to Ahrbencel
Ann Lopez, presently in the custody of her mother Araceli Lopez without the
necessity of demand, subject to adjustment later depending on the needs of
the child and my income.
The abovequoted note does not contain any statement whatsoever about
Arhbencels filiation to petitioner. It is, therefore, not within the ambit of Article
172(2) vis--vis Article 175 of the Family Code which admits as competent
evidence of illegitimate filiation an admission of filiation in a private handwritten
instrument signed by the parent concerned.

Art. 174. Legitimate children shall have the right:


(1) To bear the surnames of the father and the mother, in conformity with the provisions of the Civil
Code on Surnames;

The note cannot also be accorded the same weight as the notarial agreement to
support the child referred to in Herrera. For it is not even notarized. And Herrera
instructs that the notarial agreement must be accompanied by the putative
fathers admission of filiation to be an acceptable evidence of filiation. Here,
however, not only has petitioner not admitted filiation through contemporaneous
actions. He has consistently denied it.
The only other documentary evidence submitted by Arhbencel, a copy of her
Certificate of Birth, has no probative value to establish filiation to petitioner, the
latter not having signed the same.
Art. 173. The action to claim legitimacy may be brought by the child
during his or her lifetime and shall be transmitted to the heirs should the
child die during minority or in a state of insanity. In these cases, the heirs
shall have a period of five years within which to institute the action.
The action already commenced by the child shall
notwithstanding the death of either or both of the parties.

(2) To receive support from their parents, their ascendants, and in


proper cases, their brothers and sisters, in conformity with the
provisions of this Code on Support; and
(3) To be entitled to the legitimate and other successional rights
granted to them by the Civil Code. (264a)

The rights of legitimate children, conferred under Art. 174 cannot be


renounced.
The legitime of each child is half of the parents estate divided by the
number of legitimate children.

Chapter 3.
Illegitimate Children

survive

Action to claim legitimacy is imprescriptible, IF IT IS THE CHILD who claims


it. In other words, he can bring the action during his or her lifetime (not the
lifetime of the parents) and even after the death of the parents.

If the heirs are the ones claiming, they are only given 5 years to institute
the action.
Instances when heirs can impugn legitimate filiation:
a. When the child dies during minority;
b. When the child dies in a state of insanity even if he/she is of legal
age;
c. If the child should die after he/she already commenced an action.
Heirs cannot impugn the filiation of the child when the latter died after
he/she already commenced an action IF it is an illegitimate child claiming
filiation.

In general, all children born of parents who are not united by a valid
marriage are illegitimate. But children born of marriages under Arts. 36 and
53 are legitimate.
The Civil Code classified illegitimate children into 3 main groups:

i.

Natural children those born of parents who, at


the time of their conception, could have validly married; only the
marriage of their parents is wanting;
ii.
Natural children by legal fiction those who are
not natural children but are considered as acknowledged natural
children by express provision of law; they were generally those born
of void marriages.
iii.
Other legitimate children Writers usually
group them into:
a. Adulterous those born of a married person with one who is
not the spouse;
b. Incestuous those born of unmarried persons who cannot
marry each other because of relations by blood;
c. Sacreligious those born of persons who by reason of
religious profession are disqualified to marry;
d. Manceres those born of prostitutes.

The Family Code, however, abolished all distinctions between illegitimate


children. All children conceived and born out of wedlock are illegitimate,
unless the law itself gives them legitimate status. There are only 2 groups:
1) those conceived and born outside of wedlock of parents who at the time
of conception of the children were not disqualified by any impediment to
marry each other, formerly natural children, and 2) all other illegitimate
children. The former can be legitimated, while the latter cannot be.

Art. 176. Illegitimate children shall use the surname and shall be under
the parental authority of their mother, and shall be entitled to support in
conformity with this Code. The legitime of each illegitimate child shall
consist of one-half of the legitime of a legitimate child. Except for this
modification, all other provisions in the Civil Code governing successional
rights shall remain in force. (287a)

Art. 175. Illegitimate children may establish their illegitimate filiation in the same
way and on the same evidence as legitimate children.

The action must be brought within the same period specified in


Article 173, except when the action is based on the second paragraph of
Article 172, in which case the action may be brought during the lifetime
of the alleged parent. (289a)

Proof of illegitimate filiation same kind of evidence as provided in Art. 172.


Ex. Of proof of filiation of an illegitimate child: 1) acknowledgement of
paternity with the father signing at the back of birth certificate; 2)

acknowledgement of paternity in a public document (notarial will) or a


private handwritten instrument (holographic will or diary).
If secondary proof is relied upon the child, the action to claim filiation must
be brought during the lifetime of the alleged father; that is to give the father
a chance to defend himself.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LEGITIMATE AND ILLEGITIMATE: The action to claim
legitimate filiation does not prescribe. On the other hand, the action to
claim illegitimate filiation is barred if the action is brought after the death of
the alleged parent, that is, when the evidence to prove filiation is secondary.
If primary proof is used, the action to claim illegitimate filiation can be
brought after the lifetime of the alleged parent. If secondary proof is used,
the action must be brought during the lifetime of the alleged parent; this is
to give the parent the opportunity to refute the allegations of the
illegitimate child.

Rights
a.
b.
c.
d.

of illegitimate children:
To use the surname of their mother;
To be under the parental authority of their mother;
To be entitled to support;
To the legitime, which is of the legitime of a legitimate child, and
other successional rights (in intestate succession).
IRON RULE: All illegitimate children have no right to inherit ab intestato
from the legitimate children and relatives of his father or mother, nor shall
such children or relatives inherit in the same manner from the illegitimate
child (Art. 992, CC).
RA 9255, however, amended Art. 176, providing that illegitimate children
can now use the surname of their father, under certain conditions.
Chapter 4
Legitimated Children

Art. 177. Only children conceived and born outside of wedlock of parents
who, at the time of the conception of the former, were not disqualified by
any impediment to marry each other may be legitimated. (269a)

LEGITIMATION
It is a remedy by means of which those who in fact were not born in lawful
wedlock and should therefore be considered illegitimate children, are by
fiction considered legitimate, it being supposed that they were born when
their parents were validly married. The legitimation takes place without
judicial approval.
LEGITIMATED CHILDREN
Illegitimate children, who, because of the subsequent marriage of their
parents are, by legal fiction, considered legitimate.
Requisites for legitimation:
1. The child was conceived and born outside wedlock;
2. The parents, at the time of the childs conception, were not
disqualified by any impediment to marry each other.
Not all illegitimate children can be legitimated. Those born of parents who
could not be validly married due to some impediment at the time of
conception of the child cannot be legitimated.
The child of a couple, either or both being minors, cannot be legitimated.
Non-age is an impediment which makes the child unqualified for
legitimation. The couples recourse here is to adopt the child.
Art. 178. Legitimation shall take place by a subsequent valid marriage
between parents. The annulment of a voidable marriage shall not affect
the legitimation. (270a)

If the subsequent marriage of the parents of the natural child is void, in


legal effect there is no marriage; hence the child is not legitimated.
Annulment of marriage of the parents does not affect the legitimation of the
child.
M and W lived exclusively as husband and wife, both are legally
capacitated. W gave birth to A. 3 years later, M & W got married and their
marriage was solemnized by the justice secretary, where the parties
believed in good faith that the solemnizing officer had authority to do so. W
then gave birth to B. A year later, M left W and married Y but M and Ws
affair continued. W then gave birth to C.
a. What is the status of A? Illegitimate but can be legitimated.
b. What is the status of the marriage of M & W? VOID. Because good
faith applies only to priests.
c. What is the status of B? Illegitimate but can be legitimated.
d. What is the status of C? Illegitimate because he was born of a
bigamous marriage. The subsequent marriage took place without
declaration of nullity of the first marriage.

M and W lived exclusively as husband and wife, both are legally


capacitated. W gave birth to A. 3 years later M left W and legally married Y.
Despite the marriage, M and Ws affair continued. W gave birth to B. A year
later Y died. 8 months after the death of Y, W gave birth to C. After Cs birth,
M and W got married. W gave birth to D.

a. What is the status of A? Legitimated.


b. What is the status of B? Illegitimate.
c. What is the status of C? Illegitimate but cannot be legitimated
because at the time of his conception, there was a legal
impediment on the part of M. At the time of Cs conception, M is
still legally married to Y.
d. What is the status of D? Legitimate.
Art. 179. Legitimated children shall enjoy the same rights as legitimate
children. (272a)
Art. 180. The effects of legitimation shall retroact to the time of the
child's birth. (273a)

Effect of retroactivity to successional rights of the child: The hereditary


rights of the child, as a legitimate child, began from the date of his/her
birth.
Art. 181. The legitimation of children who died before the celebration of
the marriage shall benefit their descendants. (274)

Effect of retroactivity: The subsequent marriage of the parents makes the


child legitimate from the time of his birth, and from that moment he has all
the rights of a legitimate child. If he dies, even before the parents have
married, his rights as legitimate child are transmitted to his descendants,
who benefit from the subsequent legitimation and inherit by representation
of the legitimate child.
Art. 182. Legitimation may be impugned only by those who are prejudiced
in their rights, within five years from the time their cause of action
accrues. (275a)

The legal heirs (testamentary or intestate) can impugn the legitimation.


Some grounds for impugning legitimacy:
1) The subsequent marriage of the childs parents is void;
2) The child allegedly legitimated is not natural;
3) The child is not really the child of the alleged parents (sired by
another man).

Legitimation may be impugned within 5 years from the time the cause of
action accrues, which is from the death of the putative parent because
before that, the heirs of the child have no personality to bring the action.

TITLE VII
ADOPTION

In addition, the adopter must be at least sixteen years older than


the person to be adopted, unless the adopter is the parent by nature of
the adopted, or is the spouse of the legitimate parent of the person to be
adopted. (27a, E. O. 91 and PD 603)

DEFINITION: ADOPTION
A juridical act which creates between two persons a relationship, similar to
that which results from legitimate paternity and relations.
PURPOSE: ADOPTION
For the benefit of the adopter: persons who had no children were allowed to
adopt so that they may experience the joys of paternity and have an object
for the manifestations of their instinct of parenthood
To extend to the orphan or to the child of the indigent, the incapacitated or
the sick, the protection of society in the person of the adopter.
To give children born of illegitimate unions the same consideration as those
born in lawful wedlock.

In determining whether adoption shall be allowed, the welfare of the child is


the primary consideration.
Provisions on adoption are found in the following:
a.
Family Code approved on August 8, 1988.
b.
Inter Country Adoption Act of 1995 (RA 8043)
approved on June 7, 1995.
c.
Domestic Act of 1998 (RA 8552) approved on February
25, 1998.

Art. 184. The following persons may not adopt:


(1) The guardian with respect to the ward prior to the approval of
the final accounts rendered upon the termination of their
guardianship relation;
(2) Any person who has been convicted of a crime involving moral
turpitude;
(3) An alien, except:
(a) A former Filipino citizen who seeks to adopt a relative by
consanguinity;
(b) One who seeks to adopt the legitimate child of his or her
Filipino spouse; or
(c) One who is married to a Filipino citizen and seeks to
adopt jointly with his or her spouse a relative by
consanguinity of the latter.

Art. 183. A person of age and in possession of full civil capacity and legal
rights may adopt, provided he is in a position to support and care for his
children, legitimate or illegitimate, in keeping with the means of the
family.

Aliens not included in the foregoing exceptions may adopt Filipino


children in accordance with the rules on inter-country adoptions as may
be provided by law. (28a, E. O. 91 and PD 603)

Only minors may be adopted, except in the cases when the


adoption of a person of majority age is allowed in this Title.

Art. 185. Husband and wife must jointly adopt, except in the following
cases:
(1) When one spouse seeks to adopt his own illegitimate child; or

(2) When one spouse seeks to adopt the legitimate child of the
other. (29a, E. O. 91 and PD 603)

Art. 186. In case husband and wife jointly adopt or one spouse adopts the
legitimate child of the other, joint parental authority shall be exercised by
the spouses in accordance with this Code. (29a, E. O. and PD 603)

Art. 187. The following may not be adopted:


(1) A person of legal age, unless he or she is a child by nature of
the adopter or his or her spouse, or, prior to the adoption, said
person has been consistently considered and treated by the
adopter as his or her own child during minority.
(2) An alien with whose government the Republic of the Philippines
has no diplomatic relations; and
(3) A person who has already been adopted unless such adoption
has been previously revoked or rescinded. (30a, E. O. 91 and PD
603)

Art. 188. The written consent of the following to the adoption shall be
necessary:
(1) The person to be adopted, if ten years of age or over,
(2) The parents by nature of the child, the legal guardian, or the
proper government instrumentality;
(3) The legitimate and adopted children, ten years of age or over,
of the adopting parent or parents;

(4) The illegitimate children, ten years of age or over, of the


adopting parent, if living with said parent and the latter's spouse,
if any; and
(5) The spouse, if any, of the person adopting or to be adopted.
(31a, E. O. 91 and PD 603)

Art. 189. Adoption shall have the following effects:


(1) For civil purposes, the adopted shall be deemed to be a
legitimate child of the adopters and both shall acquire the
reciprocal rights and obligations arising from the relationship of
parent and child, including the right of the adopted to use the
surname of the adopters;
(2) The parental authority of the parents by nature over the
adopted shall terminate and be vested in the adopters, except that
if the adopter is the spouse of the parent by nature of the adopted,
parental authority over the adopted shall be exercised jointly by
both spouses; and
(3) The adopted shall remain an intestate heir of his parents and
other blood relatives. (39(1)a, (3)a, PD 603)

Art. 190. Legal or intestate succession to the estate of the adopted shall
be governed by the following rules:
(1) Legitimate and illegitimate children and descendants and the
surviving spouse of the adopted shall inherit from the adopted, in
accordance with the ordinary rules of legal or intestate succession;
(2) When the parents, legitimate or illegitimate, or the legitimate
ascendants of the adopted concur with the adopter, they shall
divide the entire estate, one-half to be inherited by the parents or
ascendants and the other half, by the adopters;
(3) When the surviving spouse or the illegitimate children of the
adopted concur with the adopters, they shall divide the entire
estate in equal shares, one-half to be inherited by the spouse or

the illegitimate children of the adopted and the other half, by the
adopters.
(4) When the adopters concur with the illegitimate children and the
surviving spouse of the adopted, they shall divide the entire estate
in equal shares, one-third to be inherited by the illegitimate
children, one-third by the surviving spouse, and one-third by the
adopters;
(5) When only the adopters survive, they shall inherit the entire
estate; and
(6) When only collateral blood relatives of the adopted survive,
then the ordinary rules of legal or intestate succession shall apply.
(39(4)a, PD 603)

General effect of adoption: The general effect of the decree of adoption is to


transfer to the adopting parents the parental authority of the parents by
nature, to the same extent as if the child has been born in lawful wedlock of
the adopting parents, except as limited by law.
HOWEVER, the relationship established by adoption is limited to the
adopting parent, and does not extend to his other relatives, except as
expressly provided by law. The adopted cannot be considered as a relative
by the ascendants and collaterals of the adopting parents, nor of the
legitimate children which the adopting parents may have before or after
adoption.
The adopted child is entitled to inherit from 2 sources: 1) the adopting
parent and 2) the parents and other relatives by blood.
QUERY: Can an adopted child represent his deceased (adopting) father
from the parents of his adopting father?
ANS: NO. The fiction of law is only between the adopted child and
adopting parent and does not extend to grandparents (parents of the
adopting parent). There is no right of representation. It is as if the
grandparents and the adopted child are strangers.
Example: Aminah will inherit properties of her father Papi when he dies. If
Aminah predeceased Papi, will Jamaludin Jr. (Aminahs child) inherit the
properties that will be acquired by his mother from Papi?
Ans: YES, by right of representation.

In case Jamaludin Jr. is an adopted child, will he inherit Papis properties by


right of representation?
Ans: NO. The FC only allows establishment of relationship between the
adopting parent and the adopted child. Ascendants are excluded.

Art. 190 governs the property of the child in case he dies without a
will (he dies intestate). If he left a will, the provisions of the will
shall govern.
Succession by adopter (Intestate): As a general rule, the adopter cannot
inherit from the adopted, except in cases allowed by law:
a. The adopter survives with the parents, legitimate or illegitimate, or the
legitimate ascendants, of the adopted: of the estate goes to the
adopter, and the other half to the parents or ascendants by nature, the
parents excluding the ascendants.
b. The adopter survives with illegitimate children or the spouse of the
adopted: of the estate goes to the adopter, and the other half to the
illegitimate children or the surviving spouse.
c. The adopter survives with the illegitimate children and the surviving
spouse of the adopted: 1/3 of the estate goes to the adopter, 1/3 to the
illegitimate children, and the last third goes to the surviving spouse.
d. The adopter survives alone: he gets the entire estate.

Adopted child is survived by:


+ Illegitimate
1) Legitimate
children +
children
descendants +
surviving spouse
2) Parents (legitimate + Adopters
or illegitimate) OR
legitimate
ascendants
3) Surviving spouse
+ Adopters
OR illegitimate
children
4) Illegitimate
+ Adopter
children AND
surviving spouse
5) Adopter
6) Only collateral
blood relatives

Ordinary rules on legal or


intestate succession. Illegitimate
childs legitime is of the
legitime of a legitimate child.
to parents or ascendants
to adopters
to surviving spouse or
illegitimate children
to adopters
1/3 to illegitimate children
1/3 to surviving spouse
1/3 to adopters
Entire estate to adopter
Ordinary rules of legal or
intestate succession

Art. 191. If the adopted is a minor or otherwise incapacitated, the


adoption may be judicially rescinded upon petition of any person
authorized by the court or proper government instrumental acting on his
behalf, on the same grounds prescribed for loss or suspension of parental
authority. If the adopted is at least eighteen years of age, he may petition
for judicial rescission of the adoption on the same grounds prescribed for
disinheriting an ascendant. (40a, PD 603)

Art. 192. The adopters may petition the court for the judicial rescission of
the adoption in any of the following cases:
(1) If the adopted has committed any act constituting ground for
disinheriting a descendant; or
(2) When the adopted has abandoned the home of the adopters
during minority for at least one year, or, by some other acts, has
definitely repudiated the adoption. (41a, PD 603)

Art. 193. If the adopted minor has not reached the age of majority at the
time of the judicial rescission of the adoption, the court in the same
proceeding shall reinstate the parental authority of the parents by
nature, unless the latter are disqualified or incapacitated, in which case
the court shall appoint a guardian over the person and property of the
minor. If the adopted person is physically or mentally handicapped, the
court shall appoint in the same proceeding a guardian over his person or
property or both.
Judicial rescission of the adoption shall extinguish all reciprocal
rights and obligations between the adopters and the adopted arising
from the relationship of parent and child. The adopted shall likewise lose
the right to use the surnames of the adopters and shall resume his
surname prior to the adoption.
The court shall accordingly order the amendment of the records in
the proper registries. (42a, PD 603)

ADOPTION
Provisions common to the:
a) Family Code approved on August 8, 1988;
b) Inter Country Adoption Act of 1995 (RA 8043) approved on June 7, 1995
and;
c) Domestic Act of 1998 (RA 8552) approved on February 25, 1998.
1) Adopter must be at least 16 years older than the adopted except:
i)
Adopter is the biological parent;
ii)
Spouse of the biological parent (under the Family Code the spouse
of the legitimate parent of the person to be adopted).
2) If married, husband and wife must jointly adopt;
Exceptions:
Under the Family Code
a. When one spouse seeks to
adopt his own illegitimate child
(repealed by RA 8552); or
b. When one spouse seeks to
adopt the legitimate child of
the other

Under RA 8552
a. When one spouse seeks to
adopt the illegitimate child of
the other;
b. One spouse seeks to adopt
his/her
illegitimate
child
provided the other spouse
signified his consent thereto; or
c. if the spouses are legally
separated

3) If an alien, must come from a country with whom the Philippines has
diplomatic relations;
4) Trial custody for a period of at least 6 months but under RA 8552, if
adopter is a Filipino, the period may be reduced if the Court finds the
same to be in the best interest of the adopted. FC is silent as to trial
custody.

FAMILY CODE
August 3, 1988

ADOPTION
RA 8043
INTERCOUNTRY
ADOPTION ACT
Approved June
7, 1995

RA 8552
DOMESTIC ADOPTION
ACT
Approved February 25,
1998

Who
may
adopt
1. In
general

A person of age
and in possession
of full civil
capacity and legal
rights, provided:

Any alien or a
Filipino citizen
permanently
residing
abroad:

1. He is in a position
to support and care
for his children,
legitimate or
illegitimate, in
keeping with the
means of the family.

1. At least 27
yo and at least
16 years older
than the child
to be adopted,
at the time of
the application
unless the
adopter is the
parent by nature
of the child to be
adopted or the
spouse of such
parent.

2. At least 16
years older than
the person to be
adopted, unless the
adopter is:
a. The parent by
nature of the
adopted
b. The spouse of
the legitimate
parent of the
person to be
adopted.
3. Has not been
convicted of a crime
involving moral
turpitude.

2. If married, his
spouse must
jointly file for the
adoption.
3. Has the
capacity to act
and assume all
rights and
responsibilities of
parental authority
under his national
laws, and has
undergone the
appropriate
counselling from
an accredited
counselor in his
country.

4. Has not been


convicted of a
crime involving
moral turpitude.
5. Is eligible to
adopt under his
national law.

Any Filipino citizen or


alien or guardian with
respect to the ward.
For Filipino:
1. Of legal age, in
possession of full civil
capacity and legal rights,
of good moral character.

6. Is in a position
to provide for the
proper care and
support and to
give the
necessary moral
values and
example to all his
children,
including the
child to be
adopted.

2. Not been convicted of


any crime involving moral
turpitude.
3. Emotionally and
psychologically capable in
caring for the children.
4. At least 16 years
older than the
adoptee, unless the
adopter is:
a. biological parent of
the adoptee
b. spouse of the
adoptee's parent

7. Agrees to
uphold the basic
rights of the
child.
8. Comes from a
country with
whom the
Philippines have
diplomatic
relations, and
that adoption is
allowed under the
national law.

5. In position to support
and care for his children
in keeping with the
means of the family.
For aliens, refer to
discussion below.

2. If
aliens

NOT qualified
UNLESS:

9. Possesses all
the qualifications
and none of the
disqualifications.
QUALIFIED

QUALIFIED but should


possess the same

(a) a former
Filipino citizen
who seeks to
adopt a relative
by consanguinity;
(b) one seeking
to adopt the
legitimate child
of his/her Filipino
spouse; and,
(c) if one is
married to a
Filipino citizen
and seeks to
adopt jointly with
his spouse a
relative by
consanguinity of
the latter.

qualifications as Filipinos.
In addition:
1. His country has
diplomatic relations with
the Philippines.
2. He has been living in
the Philippines for at least
3 continuous years prior
to the filing of the
application for adoption
and maintains such
residence until the
adoption decree is
entered.
3. He has been certified
by his diplomatic or
consular office or any
government agency that
he has the legal capacity
to adopt in his country.
4. His government allows
the adoptee to enter his
country as his adopted
child.
Exceptions to the
residency requirement
as well as certification
of aliens qualification:
(1) A former Filipino
citzen who seeks to adopt
a relative within the 4th
degree of consanguinity
or affinity;
(2) One who seeks to
adopt the legitimate child
of his Filipino spouse; or

3.
Guardian
s with
respect
to their
wards

Allowed but only


after the approval of
the final accounts
rendered upon the
termination of their
guardianship
relation.

Silent

(3) One who is married to


a Filipino citizen and
seeks to adopt jointly
with his/her spouse a
relative within the 4th
degree of consanguinity
or affinity of the Filipino
spouse.
Only after the termination
of the guardianship and
clearance of his financial
accountabilities.

Who
May Be
Adopte
d

1. Minors may be
adopted except:
a. Child by nature
of adopter or
his/her spouse;
or,
b. Prior to the
adoption, said
person had been
consistently
treated by the
adopter as his
own child during
minority;

Only a legally
free child.
Legally free
child - below 15
years old unless
sooner
emancipated by
law, voluntarily or
involuntarily
committed to
DSWD in
accordance with
the CYWC.

3. An adopted child
whose adoption had
been previously
revoked or
rescinded.

Must jointly adopt,


except:
1. When the spouse
seeks to adopt his
own illegitimate
child.
2. When one spouse

2. Legitimate child of one


spouse by the other
spouse;
3. Illegitimate child by a
qualified adopter to
improve his/her status to
that of legitimacy;
4. A person of legal age if,
prior to adoption, said
person has been
consistently treated by
the adopter as his own
child during minority;

2. An alien with
whose government
the RP has
diplomatic relations;

Rules
with
respect
to
adoptio
n by
husban
d and
wife

1. Any person below 18


years who has been
administratively or
judicially declared
available for adoption;

5. An child whose
adoption has been
previously revoked or
rescinded;

Must jointly file


for adoption.

6. A child whose adoptive


or biological parent has
died; provided that no
proceedings shall be
initiated within 6 months
from the time of the
death of the parents.
Must jointly adopt,
except:
1. If one spouse seeks to
adopt the illegitimate son
of the other.
2. If one spouse seeks to
adopt his own illegitimate

Who
shall
give
consent
in
writing

seeks to adopt the


legitimate child of
the other.

son, provided that the


other spouse has signified
his consent thereto.

In case husband and


wife jointly adopt or
one spouse adopts
the legitimate child
of the other, joint
parental authority
shall be exercised by
the spouses.

3. If the spouses are


legally separated from
each other.

1. The person to be
adopted, if 10 years
or over;
2. Parents by nature
of the child, or legal
guardian, or proper
government entity;
3. Legitimate and
adopted children, 10
years or over, of
adopter;
4. Illegitimate
children, 10 years or
over, of adopter, if
living with said
parent and the
latters spouse, if
any;
5. Spouse, if any, of
the adopter or
adopted.

For the biological


or adopted
children above 10
years of age, the
written consent
must be in the
form of a sworn
statement.

In case husband and wife


jointly adopt or one
spouse adopts the
illegitimate child of the
other, joint parental
authority shall be
exercised by the spouses.
1. The adoptee, if 10
years or over;
2. Biological parents of
the child, if known, or the
legal guardian, or the
proper government
instrumentality which has
legal custody of the child;
3. Legitimate and
adopted children, 10
years or over, of the
adopter(s) and adoptee;
4. Illegitimate children, 10
years or over, of the
adopter, if living with said
adopter and the latters
spouse;
5. Spouse, if any, of the
person adopting or to be
adopted.

Where
to file
applicat
ion

Family Court (RTC)

Either Philippine
RTC (Family
court) having
jurisdiction over
the child; or with
the Inter-Country
Adoption Board,
through an
intermediate
agency, whether
governmental or
an authorized
and accredited
agency in the
country of the
prospective
adoptive parents.

Family Court (RTC)

Effects
of
adoptio
n

1. For civil purpose,


the adopted shall be
deemed the
legitimate child of
the adopters, and
both shall acquire
the reciprocal
obligations arising
from the relationship
of parent and child,
including the right to
use the surname of
the adopters;

Silent

2. The adoptee shall be


considered the legitimate
child of the adopter for all
intents and purposes and
as such is entitled to all
the rights and obligations
provided by law to
legitimate children born
to them without
discrimination of any
kind.

2. Parental authority
of parents by nature
over the adopted
shall terminate and
be vested in the
adopters, except
that if the adopter is
the spouse of the
parent by nature of
the adopted,
parental authority
over the adopted
shall be exercised
jointly by both
spouses;

3. In legal and intestate


succession, the adopter
and the adoptee shall
have reciprocal rights of
succession without
distinction from
legitimate filiation.
However, if the adoptee
and his parents had left a
will, the law on
testamentary succession
shall govern.

3. The adopted shall


remain an intestate
heir of his parents
and other blood
relatives.

Rescissi
on of

4. If the adopter dies


prior to the decision
of the adoption, the
status of the petition
is dismissed.
The adopted or the
adopter may rescind

1. Except in cases where


the biological parent is
the spouse of the
adopter, all legal ties
between the biological
parent and the adoptee
shall be severed and the
same shall then be
vested on the adopter.

4. If the adopter dies prior


to the decision of the
adoption, the adoption
shall be issued.
Silent

Only the adoptee may


ask for rescission.

the
decree
of
adoptio
n

the adoption.
Adoption, being in the
best interest of the child,
shall NOT be subject to
rescission by the adopter.
However, the adopter
may disinherit the
adoptee for causes
provided in Art. 919 of
the CC.
Silent

Effects
of
rescis
sion

Effects of
adoption shall be
effective only
upon issuance of
decree of
adoption and the
entry in the civil
registry.

Silent

2. The reciprocal rights


and obligations of the
adopter and the adoptee to
each other shall be
extinguished.

GROUNDS FOR RESCISSION


Silent
Upon petition of the
adoptee, with the
assistance of DSWD if a
minor or if over 18 years
old but is incapacitated, as
guardian/counsel:

3. The court shall order the


Civil Registrar to cancel the
amended certificate of
birth of the adoptee and
restore his original birth
certificate.

1. Repeated physical and


verbal maltreatment by the
adopters despite having
undergone counseling;
2. Attempt on the life of the
adoptee;
3. Sexual assault or
violence; or
4. Abandonment and
failure to comply with
parental obligations.

1. Parental authority of the


adoptee's biological parent,
if known, or the legal
custody of DSWD shall be
restored if the adoptee is
still a minor or
incapacitated.

Others

No child shall be
matched to a foreign
adoptive family
unless it is
satisfactorily shown
that the child cannot
be adopted locally.
The adoptive
parents, or any one
of them, shall
personally fetch the
child in the
Philippines.

4. Succession rights shall


revert to its status prior to
adoption, but only as of the
date of the judgment of
judicial rescission. Vested
rights acquired prior to
judicial rescission shall be
respected.
Supervised trial custody for
at least 6 months. The
court may motu proprio or
upon motion of any party
reduce the trial period if it
finds the same to be in the
best interest of the
adoptee. For alien
adopter(s), he must
complete the 6-month trial
custody except those
exempted from presenting
residency requirement as
well as certification of

aliens qualification.
The governmental
agency or the
authorized and
accredited agency in
the country of the
adoptive parents
which filed the
application for intercountry adoption
shall be responsible
for the trial custody
and care of the child.
The trial custody
shall be for a period
of 6 months from the
time of the
placement. Only
after the lapse of the
period of the trial
custody shall a
decree of adoption
be issued in the said
country.

Decree of adoption shall be


effective as of the date of
the original petition was
filed. This shall also apply
in case the petitioner dies
before the issuance of the
decree of adoption to
protect the interest of the
adoptee.
No binding commitment to
an adoption plan shall be
permitted before the birth
of the child.
An amended certificate of
birth shall be issued by the
civil registry. The original
certificate of birth shall be
stamped cancelled. The
new birth certificate shall
not bear any notation that
it is an amended issue.

In case of aliens, the law to be followed depends on the time or date of the
filing of petition. The prevailing law on the date of the filing of petition is the
governing law and not the law at the time of the hearing.
Under the FC, in case of former Filipino citizens, adoption of a relative by
affinity is not allowed. However, there is no limit as to the degree as long as
it is a relative by consanguinity. As compared to RA 8552, RA 8552 allows a
former Filipino citizen to adopt a relative within the 4th degree of
consanguinity or affinity.
Under the RA 8552, the spouse of the adopter should give his/her consent in
writing. However, if the spouses are legally separated, the spouse of the
adopter need not give his consent in writing.
Under RA 8043, trial custody must be conducted in the country of the
adopting parents.
LANDINGIN VS. REPUBLIC
June 27, 2006

FACTS:
Minors Elaine, Elma and Eugene were the children of Amelia and the late
Manuel Ramos. After Manuels death, the children were left under the custody of
their paternal grandmother because Amelia left for Italy. When the paternal
grandmother died, the children were taken cared of by a paternal uncle. Landingin,
the 57-year old aunt and sister of the late Manuel and an American citizen residing
in Guam, now desires to adopt the 3 children. In her petition, she alleged that the
mother of the children had abandoned them and had not communicated with her
children with her 2nd husband. That petitioner and her other siblings were the ones
financially supporting the children. That she is already a widow and living alone
because all her children are already married and are gainfully employed. They have
given their consent in writing to the adoption, who also promised to help her in
supporting the children financially. Likewise, the paternal uncle when the children
are currently staying also signified his willingness and commitment to support the
minors while in petitioners custody.
The DSWD was then directed by the court to conduct a case study and
thereafter, Social Welfare officer Pagbilao submitted a Child Study Report. It stated
that the surviving parent consented to the adoption as evidenced by affidavit of
Consent executed by the childrens mother Amelia as the mother came home on
May 2, 2002 and stayed for 3 weeks. The minors likewise consented to the
proposed adoption. Pagbilao then recommended that the children be adopted by
petitioner. During the trial however, Landingin failed to present Pagbilao as witness
and also failed to adduce documentary evidence that, indeed, Amelia assented to
the adoption. But despite that, the lower court granted the petition. On appeal by
the Republic, the CA reversed the lower courts ruling stating that petitioner failed
to adduce in evidence the voluntary consent of Amelia. The Affidavit of Consent of
petitioners children is also inadmissible as evidence since it was not authenticated
by a Philippine Consular Official having been executed in Guam and while
petitioner has a job, she was not stable enough to support the children. Landingin
then went to the SC via certiorari.
ISSUES:
a. Whether or not petitioner is entitled to adopt the minors without the written
consent of the biological mother
b. Whether or not affidavit of consent purportedly executed by petitioners
children sufficiently complies with the law; and,
c. Whether or not petitioner is financially capable of supporting the adoptees?
HELD:

The general requirement of consent and notice to the natural parents is


intended to protect the natural parental relationship form unwarranted interference

by interlopers. And to insure the opportunity to safeguard the best interest of the
child.

legal relation between the former and the latter. Moreover, no proof was adduced
to prove her allegation that her children and siblings are willing to support the
minors herein.

Clearly, the written consent of the natural parents is indispensable for the validity
of a decree of adoption. In this case, petitioner failed to submit the written consent
of Amelia to adoption.

IN RE: PETITION FOR ADOPTION OF


MICHELLE P. LIM AND MICHAEL JUDE LIM
588 SCRA 98

Petitioners argument that her consent is no longer necessary because she left for
Italy and never came back, hence. Amelia had abandoned the children and it was
just by twist of fate that after 12 years Amelia was on vacation and was able to
meet Pagbilao, must be rejected. If, as claimed that the biological had abandoned
them, she should have adduced the written consent of the childrens legal
guardian. Merely permitting the child to remain for a time undisturbed in the care
of the others does not constitute abandonment. To dispense with the requirement
of consent, the abandonment must be shown to have existed at the time of
adoption.

FACTS:
Petitioner is an optometrist by profession. On 23 June 1974, she married
Primo Lim. They were childless. Minor children, whose parents were unknown, were
entrusted to them by a certain Lucia Ayuban. Being so eager to have a child of
their own, petitioner and Lim registered the children to make it appear that they
were the childrens parents. The children were named Michelle P. Lim (Michelle) and
Michael Jude P. Lim (Michael). Michelle was barely eleven days old when brought to
the clinic of petitioner. She was born on 15 March 1977. Michael was 11 days old
when Ayuban brought him to petitioners clinic. His date of birth is 1 August 1983.

Here, petitioner relied on her testimony and that of Elaine, the eldest of the 3, to
prove that Amelia abandoned them.

The spouses reared and cared for the children as if they were their own. They sent
the children to exclusive schools. They used the surname Lim in all their school
records and documents. Unfortunately, on 28 November 1998, Primo Lim died. On
December 27, 2000, petitioner married Angel Olario, an American citizen.
Thereafter, petitioner decided to adopt the children by availing of the amnesty
given under (RA 8552) to those individuals who simulated the birth of a child. Thus,
on April 24, 2002, petitioner filed separate petitions for the adoption of Michelle
and Michael before the trial court. At the time of the filing of the petitions for
adoption, Michelle was 25 years old and already married, while Michael was 18
years and seven months old.

The Home Study Repot tends to show otherwise. Elaine during the interview said
that in serious problems she already consult her mother and petitioner-aunt And
whole petitioner and other paternal relatives re continuously providing for most of
their needs and education. Amelia would also send financial support ranging from
P10,000.00 to P15,000.00 a month through her parents and share P3,000.00 to
P5,000.00 thereof with the children.
Thus Amelia left for Italy without intention of abandoning her children or to
permanently sever their mother-child relationship. She was merely impelled to
leave the country by financial constraints. Yet, even while abroad, she did not
surrender or relinquish entirely her motherly obligations of rearing her children to
her now deceased mother-in-law.
Petitioner failed to offer in evidence Paglibaos report and the joint affidavit of
consent purportedly executed by her children; the authenticity of which she,
likewise, failed to prove. As to her financial capacity, the report stated that the
petitioner is 57 years old, employed on the part-time basis as a waitress, earning
$5.15 an hour and tips of around $1,000.00 per month. That she owns her house at
Quitugua Subd. Yigo, Guam but the same time is still being amortized. Given these
limited facts, it is doubtful whether petitioner will be able to sufficiently handle the
financial aspect of rearing 3 children in the US. While she claims that she has the
financial support and backing of her children, the OSG is correct in stating that the
ability to support the adoptee is personal to the adopter, as adoption only creates a

Michelle and her husband gave their consent to the adoption as evidenced by their
Affidavits of Consent. Michael also gave his consent to his adoption as shown in his
Affidavit of Consent. Petitioners husband Olario likewise executed an Affidavit of
Consent for the adoption of Michelle and Michael. In the Certification issued by the
DSWD, Michelle was considered as an abandoned child and the whereabouts of her
natural parents were unknown. The DSWD issued a similar Certification for Michael.
The trial court rendered judgment dismissing the petitions.
ISSUE:
Whether or not petitioner, who has remarried, can singly adopt
HELD:

No. It is undisputed that, at the time the petitions for adoption were filed,
petitioner had already remarried. She filed the petitions by herself, without being
joined by her husband Olario. Section 7, Article III of RA 8552 reads:

SEC. 7. Who May Adopt. - The following may adopt:


(a) Any Filipino citizen of legal age, in possession of full civil capacity and legal
rights, of good moral character, has not been convicted of any crime involving
moral turpitude, emotionally and psychologically capable of caring for children,
at least sixteen (16) years older than the adoptee, and who is in a position to
support and care for his/her children in keeping with the means of the family.
The requirement of sixteen (16) year difference between the age of the
adopter and adoptee may be waived when the adopter is the biological parent
of the adoptee, or is the spouse of the adoptees parent;
(b) Any alien possessing the same qualifications as above stated for Filipino
nationals: Provided, That his/her country has diplomatic relations with the
Republic of the Philippines, that he/she has been living in the Philippines for at
least three (3) continuous years prior to the filing of the application for
adoption and maintains such residence until the adoption decree is entered,
that he/she has been certified by his/her diplomatic or consular office or any
appropriate government agency that he/she has the legal capacity to adopt in
his/her country, and that his/her government allows the adoptee to enter
his/her country as his/her adopted son/daughter: Provided, further, That the
requirements on residency and certification of the aliens qualification to adopt
in his/her country may be waived for the following:
(i) a former Filipino citizen who seeks to adopt a relative within the fourth
(4th) degree of consanguinity or affinity; or
(ii) one who seeks to adopt the legitimate son/daughter of his/her Filipino
spouse; or
(iii) one who is married to a Filipino citizen and seeks to adopt jointly with
his/her spouse a relative within the fourth (4th) degree of consanguinity or
affinity of the Filipino spouses; or
(c) The guardian with respect to the ward after the termination of the
guardianship and clearance of his/her financial accountabilities.
Husband and wife shall jointly adopt, except in the following cases:
(i) if one spouse seeks to adopt the legitimate son/daughter of the other; or
(ii) if one spouse seeks to adopt his/her own illegitimate son/daughter:
Provided, however, That the other spouse has signified his/her consent
thereto; or
(iii) if the spouses are legally separated from each other.

In case husband and wife jointly adopt, or one spouse adopts the illegitimate
son/daughter of the other, joint parental authority shall be exercised by the
spouses.
The use of the word shall in the above-quoted provision means that joint adoption
by the husband and the wife is mandatory. This is in consonance with the concept
of joint parental authority over the child which is the ideal situation. As the child to
be adopted is elevated to the level of a legitimate child, it is but natural to require
the spouses to adopt jointly. The rule also insures harmony between the spouses.
Petitioner, having remarried at the time the petitions for adoption were filed, must
jointly adopt. Since the petitions for adoption were filed only by petitioner herself,
without joining her husband, Olario, the trial court was correct in denying the
petitions for adoption on this ground.
Neither does petitioner fall under any of the three exceptions enumerated in
Section 7. First, the children to be adopted are not the legitimate children of
petitioner or of her husband Olario. Second, the children are not the illegitimate
children of petitioner. And third, petitioner and Olario are not legally separated from
each other.
The fact that Olario gave his consent to the adoption as shown in his Affidavit of
Consent does not suffice. There are certain requirements that Olario must comply
being an American citizen. He must meet the qualifications set forth in Section 7 of
RA 8552 such as: (1) he must prove that his country has diplomatic relations with
the Republic of the Philippines; (2) he must have been living in the Philippines for
at least three continuous years prior to the filing of the application for adoption; (3)
he must maintain such residency until the adoption decree is entered; (4) he has
legal capacity to adopt in his own country; and (5) the adoptee is allowed to enter
the adopters country as the latters adopted child. None of these qualifications were
shown and proved during the trial.
Petitioner also contends that joint parental authority is not anymore necessary
since the children have been emancipated having reached the age of majority. This
is untenable. Parental authority includes caring for and rearing the children for civic
consciousness and efficiency and the development of their moral, mental and
physical character and well-being. The father and the mother shall jointly exercise
parental authority over the persons of their common children. Even the remarriage
of the surviving parent shall not affect the parental authority over the children,
unless the court appoints another person to be the guardian of the person or
property of the children.
It is true that when the child reaches the age of emancipation that is, when he
attains the age of majority or 18 years of age emancipation terminates parental

authority over the person and property of the child, who shall then be qualified and
responsible for all acts of civil life. However, parental authority is merely just one of
the effects of legal adoption. Even if emancipation terminates parental authority,
the adoptee is still considered a legitimate child of the adopter with all the rights of
a legitimate child such as: (1) to bear the surname of the father and the mother;
(2) to receive support from their parents; and (3) to be entitled to the legitime and
other successional rights. Conversely, the adoptive parents shall, with respect to
the adopted child, enjoy all the benefits to which biological parents are entitled
such as support and successional rights.

Petitioner, being married at the time the petitions for adoption were filed, should
have jointly filed the petitions with her husband. Petitioner, in her Memorandum,
insists that subsequent events would show that joint adoption could no longer be
possible because Olario has filed a case for dissolution of his marriage to petitioner
in the Los Angeles Superior Court. The filing of a case for dissolution of the
marriage between petitioner and Olario is of no moment. It is not equivalent to a
decree of dissolution of marriage. Until and unless there is a judicial decree for the
dissolution of the marriage between petitioner and Olario, the marriage still
subsists. That being the case, joint adoption by the husband and the wife is
required.