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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES

REGIONAL TRIAL COURT


BRANCH 6, CEBU CITY

Gerard delos Reyes


Petitioner,
-versus-
Civil Case No. 14344
For: Petition for Declaration of
Nullity of Marriage
Geraldine delos Reyes,
Respondent

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MEMORANDUM FOR THE RESPONDENT

THE RESPONDENT, Geraldine delos Reyes, respectfully state that:

PREFATORY STATEMENT

The family is the basic unit of society. The family, along with the marriage
between the spouses shall be protected by the State and shall be shielded from
nullifying such sacred union on inadequate grounds. The law recognizes the family as
the most important element that makes a society. The justice system shall see to it that
this so remains.

FACTS OF THE CASE

1. January 5, 2011 Gerard and Geraldine delos Santos married. A week after their
marriage, her husband went left for abroad for work. They communicated
regularly either through email, chat or telephone.
2. Gerard delos Reyes came home sometime in July 2012 for a one-month
vacation and left in the middle of August 2012. A month later, her husband left
for abroad again.
3. Geraldine delos Reyes discovered that she was pregnant. She communicated
this to her husband and he planned to come home when she was scheduled to
give birth. Gerard came home sometime in the middle of April 2013 and she
gave birth to their daughter Joanna on May 3, 2013.
4. Gerard left for abroad again, their communication then was still regular and he
sent her regular monthly support but sometime February 2014, he stopped
sending regular support and did not contact her for a month. As she was
worried about him, she tried to contact him but he was always out when she
called. He did not also answer her emails. She never communicated to her
after that.
5. Sometime in June 2014, she received a summons for a petition for declaration
of nullity of marriage filed by her husband on the ground of psychological
incapacity. One of the bases for psychological incapacity was that she was an
unfaithful wife, that she got pregnant from another man and that the child was
not his. In her husbands allegation, they had sexual intercourse on August 9,
2012 but she gave birth on May 3, 2013 less than nine months had lapsed.
Another allegation of the husband was that she was only after his money as she
was always asking him for money. One of his prayers in the petition was for the
court to direct petitioner to undergo DNA test.
6. According to Mrs. delos Reyes, she was never unfaithful to her husband and was
sure that he was the father of her daughter. She wants to know if she could ask
for regular support and if she had to undergo DNA test so that her husband will
give support.

ISSUE

We now present the following issues:

1. Whether or not the respondent is psychologically incapacitated and has failed


to comply with the essential marital obligations to nullify their marriage;

2. Whether or not Joana delos Reyes, the child born during respondents
marriage to her husband is entitled for support.

ARGUMENTS AND DISCUSSION

I. Geraldine is not psychologically incapacitated.

It is stated in Article 36 of the Family Code of the Philippines that:

A marriage contracted by any party who, at the time of the


celebration, was psychologically incapacitated to comply with the
essential marital obligations of marriage, shall likewise be void
even if such incapacity becomes manifested only after
solemnization.

In the landmark case of Antonio v. Reyes, G.R. No. 155800, the Court, through
then Justice (now Chief Justice) Panganiban observed that [t]he evidence [to establish
psychological incapacity] must convince the court that the parties, or one of them, was
mentally or psychically ill to such extent that the person could not have known the
obligations he was assuming, or knowing them, could not have given valid assumption
thereto. Jurisprudence since then has recognized that psychological incapacity is a
malady so grave and permanent as to deprive one of awareness of the duties and
responsibilities of the matrimonial bond one is about to assume.

The case Santos v. Court of Appeals, 310 Phil.21 (1995) is also worth mentioning.
Therein, it is stated that psychological incapacity is characterized by (a) Gravity; (b)
Judicial Antecedence; and (c) Incurability.

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It is a rule that psychological incapacity must be confined to the most serious
cases of personality disorders clearly demonstrative of an utter insensitivity or inability
to give meaning and significance to the marriage.

In the case of Dimayuga-Laurena v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 159220, 22


September 2008, the Court declared the following parameters:

(a) Gravity It must be grave and serious such that the party
would be incapable of carrying out duties required in a marriage;

(b) Juridical Antecedence It must be rooted in the history of the


party antedating the marriage, although the overt
manifestations may emerge only after the marriage; and

(c) Incurability It must be incurable, or even if it were


otherwise, the cure would be beyond the means of the party
involved.

The respondents psychological incapacity is not founded upon unswerving


grounds. The respondent herein was never unfaithful to her husband. Furthermore, she
was actually compliant in her marital obligations during the sustenance of their
marriage. The requirement that the errant spouses incapacity of meeting his marital
responsibilities and duties must be due to some psychological illness is not satisfactorily
met. The grounds invoked by the complainant to move for the nullity of their marriage
are insufficient to meet the strictures set by the law in invoking psychological incapacity.

Article 36 of the Family Code of the Philippines states that downright incapacity,
not a mere refusal, neglect or difficulty, much less, ill will, on the part of the errant
spouse will render a marriage void on the ground of psychological incapacity.

II. Joana delos Reyes is entitled for support.

Article 164, of the Family Code provides:

Art. 164. Children conceived or born during the marriage of


the parents are legitimate.

Article 105 of the Family Code of the Philippines, further states that:
Art. 105. 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; and
(5) Legitimate brothers and sisters, whether of full or half-
blood

Joana delos Reyes was born during the subsistence of Gerard and Geraldines
marriage. Thus, as per the provisions above, we can deduce that Joana delos Reyes is
under those who his legitimate father is obliged to support. Unless declared by the court

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through a final judgment that she is an illegitimate child, she is very much entitled to
support.

Even during the continuance of the proceedings for declaration of nullity of


marriage, the child is nevertheless entitled for support. This is reinforced by Article 198
of the Family Code, which states:

Art. 198. During the proceedings for legal separation


or for annulment of marriage, and for declaration of nullity of
marriage, the spouses and their children shall be supported
from the properties of the absolute community or the
conjugal partnership. After the final judgment granting the
petition, the obligation of mutual support between the
spouses ceases. However, in case of legal separation, the
court may order that the guilty spouse shall give support to
the innocent one, specifying the terms of such order.

We thus conclude that Geraldine delos Reyes is not psychologically


incapacitated. The petition for the declaration of nullity of marriage should be rendered
insufficient. Further, their legitimate child, Joana delos Reyes, shall also be given
support.

PRAYER

WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, we respectfully pray to the Honorable


Court that the petition for declaration of nullity of marriage between GERARD DELOS
REYES and GERALDINE DELOS REYES be DENIED and if the legitimacy of the child is
proven of be his own, that support for the minor child be GRANTED.

Other reliefs, remedies, just and equitable reliefs in the premises are likewise
prayed for.

City of Cebu, March 16, 2017.

ONG OH AND ASSOCIATES


ATTORNEYS-AT-LAW
Counsel for the Respondent
Unit 1, Great Towers
Talamban, Cebu City

By:

(Sgd.) ATTY. JOSE B. ONG OH IV


IBP. Lifetime No. 098863; 11/6/2000
PTR No. 527451; 01-25-16
Roll of Attorney No. 2007-88372
MCLE Compliance No. III-9864
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Copy Furnished:

ATTY. RANDY GOMEZ


Counsel for Petitioner
1/F Room 1, Cebu Holdings Bldg.
Cebu Business Park
Cebu City