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San Beda College of Law

Mendiola, Manila

CASE BRIEF - FINAL EXAM


Void Marriages other than Psychological Incapacity

Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the subject Legal Research in San Beda College of Law

Submitted by: Larida, Elcah Myrrh A. Rivera, Hiezll Wynn R. Romano, Kenczar C. Samson, Vyron B. 1H GROUP 4

Submitted to: Atty. Maria Melissa G. Tan-Rivera

That in all things, God may be glorified

TABLE OF CONTENTS

NOLLORA, JR. v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

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ZAMORANOS v. PEOPLE

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LLAVE v. REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES ..... ANTONE v. BERONILLA ..

JARILLO v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES ....... 12

RE: COMPLAINT OF MRS. CORAZON S. SALVADOR AGAINST SPOUSES NOEL and AMELIA SERAFICO ...... CARLOS v. SANDOVAL .. REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES v. DAYOT .. UGALDE v. DE YSASI DE CASTRO v. DE CASTRO .. 14

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NOLLORA, JR. v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES G.R. No. 191425. September 7, 2011

PEREZ, J.:

Procedural History: This is a petition for review assailing the Decision promulgated on 30 September 2009 as well as the Resolution promulgated on 23 February 2010 by the Court of Appeals (appellate court) in CA-G.R. CR No. 31538. The appellate court affirmed the 19 November 2007 Decision of Branch 215 of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City (trial court) in Criminal Case No. Q04-129031.

The trial court found accused Atilano O. Nollora, Jr. (Nollora) guilty of bigamy under Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code and sentenced him to suffer imprisonment. Co-accused Rowena Geraldino (Geraldino) was acquitted for the prosecutions failure to prove her guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

Statement of Facts: On August 24, 2004, Assistant City Prosecutor Raymond Jonathan B. Lledo filed an Information against Atilano O. Nollora, Jr. ("Nollora") and Rowena P. Geraldino ("Geraldino") for the crime of Bigamy. The accusatory portion of the Information reads:

"That on or about the 8th day of December 2001 in Quezon City, Philippines, the abovenamed accused ATILANO O. NOLLORA, JR., being then legally married to one JESUSA PINAT NOLLORA, and as said marriage has not been legally dissolved and still subsisting, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously contract a subsequent or second marriage with her co-accused ROWENA P. GERALDINO, who knowingly consented and agreed to be married to her co-accused ATILANO O. NOLLORA, JR. knowing him to be a married man, to the damage and prejudice of the said offended party JESUSA PINAT NOLLORA."

Accused Nollora pleaded not guilty and the following facts disclosed:

The first marriage between Atilano O. Nollora, Jr. and JesusaPinatNollora was solemnized on April 6, 1999 at SapangPalay, San Jose del Monte; that Atilano O. Nollora, Jr. contracted the second marriage with Rowena P. Geraldino on December 8, 2001 in Quezon City; that in the Counter-Affidavit of Atilano O. Nollora, Jr., he admitted that he contracted the second marriage to Rowena P. Geraldino; that Rowena P. Geraldino attached to her Counter-Affidavit the Certificate of Marriage with Atilano O. Nollora, Jr. dated December 8, 2001; the fact of marriage of Rowena P. Geraldino with Atilano O. Nollora, Jr. as admitted in her Counter-Affidavit; that Geraldino was not a muslim but a Catholic.

It was proved that AtilanoNollora was a Muslim convert way back on January 10, 1992 even before the first marriage. In his petition to the Supreme Court, he contended that he is entitled to marry four (4) wives as allowed under the Muslim or Islam belief.

Issue: Whether or not the second marriage is bigamous and therefore null and void ab initio.

Answer: Yes, the marriage between the Nollora and Geraldino is bigamous under Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code, and as such, the second marriage is considered null and void ab initio under Article 35 of the Family Code.

Reasoning: Indeed, Article 13(2) of the Code of Muslim Personal Laws states that "In case of a marriage between a Muslim and a non-Muslim, solemnized not in accordance with Muslim law or this Code, the [Family Code of the Philippines, or Executive Order No. 209, in lieu of the Civil Code of the Philippines] shall apply." Nolloras religious affiliation is not an issue here. Neither is the claim that Nolloras marriages were solemnized according to Muslim law. Thus, regardless of his professed religion, Nollora cannot claim exemption from liability for the crime

of bigamy.The court denied Nolloras invocation of his religious beliefs and practices to the prejudice of the non-Muslim women who married him pursuant to Philippine civil laws. Nolloras two marriages were not conducted in accordance with the Code of Muslim Personal Laws, hence the Family Code of the Philippines should apply. Nolloras claim of religious freedom will not immobilize the State and render it impotent in protecting the general welfare.

In applying the Family Code of the Philippines, it is therefore decided that the second marriage of Nollora with Geraldino, being bigamous under Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code, is void from the beginning pursuant to Article 35 paragraph 4 of the Family Code.

Holding: The petition is DENIED. The Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CR No. 31538 promulgated on 30 September 2009 and the Resolution promulgated on 23 February 2010 are AFFIRMED. Petitioner Atilano O. Nollora, Jr. is guilty beyond reasonable doubt of Bigamy in Criminal Case No. Q-04-129031 and is sentenced to suffer the penalty of imprisonment with a term of two years, four months and one day of prisioncorreccional as minimum to eight years and one day of prision mayor as maximum of his indeterminate sentence, as well as the accessory penalties provided by law.

ATTY. MARIETTA D. ZAMORANOS v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES and SAMSON R. PACASUM, SR.. G.R. No. 193902. June 1, 2011

NACHURA, J.:

Procedural History: These are three (3) consolidated petitions for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court, assailing the Decision1 dated July 30, 2010 of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CAG.R. SP No. 03525-MIN, dismissing the petition for certiorari filed by petitioner Atty. Marietta D. Zamoranos (Zamoranos) in G.R. No. 193902, thus, affirming the Order2 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 6, Lanao del Norte, in Criminal Case No. 06-12305 for Bigamy filed by petitioner Samson R. Pacasum, Sr. in G.R. No. 194075.

Before anything else, we disentangle the facts.

On May 3, 1982, Zamoranos wed Jesus de Guzman, a Muslim convert, in Islamic rites. Prior thereto, Zamoranos was a Roman Catholic who had converted to Islam on April 28, 1982. Subsequently, on July 30, 1982, the two wed again, this time, in civil rites before Judge Perfecto Laguio (Laguio) of the RTC, Quezon City.

A little after a year, on December 18, 1983, Zamoranos and De Guzman obtained a divorce by talaq. The dissolution of their marriage was confirmed by the Sharia Circuit District Court, 1st Circuit, 3rd District, Isabela, Basilan, which issued a Decree of Divorce on June 18, 1992, as follows.

Statement of Facts: This is a case for divorce filed by the herein complainant Marietta (Mariam) D. Zamoranos de Guzman against her husband, the herein respondent, on the ground that the wife, herein complainant, was previously given by her husband the authority to exercise Talaq, as

provided for and, in accordance with Presidential Decree No. 1083, otherwise known as the Code of Muslim Personal Laws of the Philippines.

When this case was called for hearing both parties appeared and herein respondent, Jesus (Mohamad) de Guzman interposes no objection to confirm their divorce, which they have freely entered into on December 18, 1983. This Court, after evaluating the testimonies of the herein parties is fully convinced that both the complainant and the respondent have been duly converted to the faith of Islam prior to their Muslim wedding and finding that there is no more possibility of reconciliation by and between them, hereby issues this decree of divorce. The allegation of [Pacasum] to the effect that his marriage with [Zamoranos] on December 28, 1992 is a bigamous marriage due to the alleged subsisting previous marriage between [Zamoranos] and Jesus de Guzman is misplaced. The previous marriage between Jesus de Guzman and [Zamoranos] has long been terminated [and] has gone with the wind. The fact that divorce by Talaq was entered into by [Zamoranos] and her first husband in accordance with PD 1083, their marriage is dissolved and consequently thereof, [Zamoranos] and Jesus de Guzman can re-marry. Moreover, the second marriage entered into by [Zamoranos] and her first husband Jesus de Guzman under the Family Code on July 30, 1982 is merely ceremonial, being unnecessary, it does not modify/alter or change the validity of the first marriage entered into by them under PD 1083.

Issues: Whether or not a divorce decree under Muslim law gives the spouses the right to remarry.

Answers: Yes. Since the parties are both converted to the faith of Islam prior to their Muslim wedding, then they are covered by the Muslim code or Muslim law. The spouses who had a divorce under such law is entitled to remarry other person.

Reasoning: If both parties are Muslims, there is a presumption that the Muslim Code or Muslim law is complied with. If together with it or in addition to it, the marriage is likewise solemnized in accordance with the Civil Code of the Philippines, in a so-called combined Muslim-Civil

marriage rites whichever comes first is the validating rite and the second rite is merely ceremonial one. But, in this case, as long as both parties are Muslims, this Muslim Code will apply. In effect, two situations will arise, in the application of this Muslim Code or Muslim law, that is, when both parties are Muslims and when the male party is a Muslim and the marriage is solemnized in accordance with Muslim Code or Muslim law. A third situation occurs when the Civil Code of the Philippines will govern the marriage and divorce of the parties, if the male party is a Muslim and the marriage is solemnized in accordance with the Civil Code.

Moreover, the two experts, in the same book, unequivocally state that one of the effects of irrevocable talaq, as well as other kinds of divorce, refers to severance of matrimonial bond, entitling one to remarry. It stands to reason therefore that Zamoranos divorce from De Guzman, as confirmed by an Ustadz and Judge Jainul of the Sharia Circuit Court, and attested to by Judge Usman, was valid, and, thus, entitled her to remarry Pacasum in 1989. Consequently, the RTC, Branch 6, Iligan City, is without jurisdiction to try Zamoranos for the crime of Bigamy.

Holding: WHEREFORE, the petition in G.R. No. 193902 is GRANTED. The petition in G.R. No. 194075 is DENIED. The Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 03525-MIN is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Accordingly, the Motion to Quash the Information in Criminal Case No. 06-12305 for Bigamy is GRANTED.

JULIANO LLAVE v. REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES G.R. No. 169766. March 30, 2011

DEL CASTILLO, J.:

Procedural History: This petition for review on certiorari assails the Decision dated August 17, 2004 of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. CV No. 61762 and its subsequent Resolution dated September 13, 2005, which affirmed the Decision of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Quezon City, Branch 89 declaring petitioner Estrellita Juliano-Llaves (Estrellita) marriage to Sen. Mamintal A.J. Tamano (Sen. Tamano) as void ab initio.

Statement of Facts: Around 11 months before his death, Sen. Tamano married Estrellita twice initially under the Islamic laws and tradition on May 27, 1993 in Cotabato City and, subsequently, under a civil ceremony officiated by an RTC Judge at Malabang, Lanao del Sur on June 2, 1993. In their marriage contracts, Sen. Tamanos civil status was indicated as divorced. Since then, Estrellita has been representing herself to the whole world as Sen. Tamanos wife, and upon his death, his widow. On November 23, 1994, private respondents Haja Putri Zorayda A. Tamano (Zorayda) and her son Adib Ahmad A. Tamano (Adib), in their own behalf and in behalf of the rest of Sen. Tamanos legitimate children with Zorayda, filed a complaint with the RTC of Quezon City for the declaration of nullity of marriage between Estrellita and Sen. Tamano for being bigamous. The complaint alleged that Sen. Tamano married Zorayda on May 31, 1958 under civil rites, and that this marriage remained subsisting when he married Estrellita in 1993.

Issue: Whether the marriage between Estrellita and the late Sen. Tamano was bigamous.

Answer: Yes. The civil code governs the marriage of Zorayda and late Sen. Tamano; their marriage was never invalidated by PD 1083. Sen. Tamanos subsequent marriage to Estrellita is void ab initio.

Reason: The marriage between the late Sen. Tamano and Zorayda was celebrated in 1958, solemnized under civil and Muslim rites. The only law in force governing marriage relationships between Muslims and non-Muslims alike was the Civil Code of 1950, under the provisions of which only one marriage can exist at any given time. Under the marriage provisions of the Civil Code, divorce is not recognized except during the effectivity of Republic Act No. 394 which was not availed of during its effectivity. As far as Estrellita is concerned, Sen. Tamanos prior marriage to Zorayda has been severed by way of divorce under PD 1083, the law that codified Muslim personal laws. However, PD 1083 cannot benefit Estrellita. Firstly, Article 13(1) thereof provides that the law applies to marriage and divorce wherein both parties are Muslims, or wherein only the male party is a Muslim and the marriage is solemnized in accordance with Muslim law or this Code in any part of the Philippines. But Article 13 of PD 1083 does not provide for a situation where the parties were married both in civil and Muslim rites.

Holding: The petition is DENIED.

MYRNA P. ANTONE v. LEO R. BERONILLA G.R. No. 183824. December 8, 2010

PEREZ, J.:

Procedural History: Before us is a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court seeking to nullify and set aside the issuances of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 102834, to wit: (a) the Resolution dated 29 April 2008 dismissing the petition for certiorari under Rule 65, which assailed the trial courts Orders dated 20 September 2007 and 6 December 2007 in Criminal Case No. 07-0907-CFM for Bigamy; and (b) the Resolution dated 18 July 2008 denying the motion for reconsideration of the first resolution. The trial court quashed the Information on the ground that the elements of Bigamy were rendered incomplete after herein respondent presented documents to prove a fact, which the court believed would negate the allegation in the Information that there was a first valid marriage. The evidence presented showed that respondent later obtained a judicial declaration of nullity of the first union following the celebration of a subsequent marriage.

Statement of Facts: On 12 March 2007, herein petitioner Myrna P. Antone executed an AffidavitComplaint for Bigamy against Leo R. Beronilla before the Office of the City Prosecutor of Pasay City. She alleged that her marriage with respondent in 1978 had not yet been legally dissolved when the latter contracted a second marriage with one Cecile Maguillo in 1991. Petitioner maintained that the respondent committed an act which has all the essential requisites of bigamy. The prosecution pointed out that the marriage of petitioner and respondent on 18 November 1978 has not yet been severed when he contracted a second marriage on 16 February 1991, for which reason, bigamy has already been committed before the court declared the first marriage null and void on 27 April 2007. On the other hand, respondent moved to quash the Information on the ground that the facts charged do not constitute an offense. He informed the court that his marriage with petitioner was declared null and void by the Regional Trial Court, Branch 16, Naval, Biliran on 26 April 2007; that the decision became final and executory on 15

May 200[7]; and that such decree has already been registered with the Municipal Civil Registrar on 12 June 2007. He argued that since the marriage had been declared null and void from the beginning, there was actually no first marriage to speak of. Absent a first valid marriage, the facts alleged in the Information do not constitute the crime of bigamy.

Issue: Whether the trial court erred in finding that the first essential element of bigamy, which is a first valid marriage contracted by private respondent is wanting.

Answers: No, under the law it is essential that the marriage must be first judicially declared null and void. Hence, in this case the first element is present and the second marriage is void ab initio due to the subsisting marriage.

Reasoning: Supreme Court finds that the trial court committed grave abuse of discretion. ART. 40 of the Family Code states that: The absolute nullity of a previous marriage may be invoked for purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such marriage void.

The Court, concluded, in essence, that under the Family Code a subsequent judicial declaration of the nullity of the first marriage is immaterial in a bigamy case because, by then, the crime had already been consummated. Otherwise stated, this Court declared that a person, who contracts a subsequent marriage absent a prior judicial declaration of nullity of a previous one, is guilty of bigamy.

In the case of Tenebro VS CA: Although the judicial declaration of the nullity of a marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity retroacts to the date of the celebration of the marriage insofar as the vinculum between the spouses is concerned, said marriage is not without legal effects. Among these effects is that children conceived or born before the judgment of absolute nullity of the marriage shall be considered legitimate. There is therefore a recognition written into the law itself that such a marriage, although void ab initio, may still

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produce legal consequences. Among these legal consequences is incurring criminal liability for bigamy.

Holding: WHEREFORE, the Orders dated 20 September 2007 and 6 December 2007 of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 115, Pasay City as well as the Resolutions dated 29 April 2008 and 18 July 2008 of the Court of Appeals are hereby SET ASIDE. Criminal Case No. 07-0907-CFM is REMANDED to the trial court for further proceedings. SO ORDERED.

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VICTORIA S. JARILLO v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES G.R. No. 164435, June 29, 2010

PERALTA, J.:

Procedural History This resolves petitioners Motion for Reconsideration dated November 11, 2009 and respondents Commentthereto dated March 5, 2010.

Statement of Facts: In the Decision dated September 29, 2009, the Court affirmed petitioners conviction for bigamy. Petitioner is moving for reconsideration of the Decision, arguing that since petitioners marriages were entered into before the effectivity of the Family Code, then the applicable law is Section 29 of the Marriage Law (Act 3613), instead of Article 40 of the Family Code, which requires a final judgment declaring the previous marriage void before a person may contract a subsequent marriage.

Issue: Whether or not the petitioners marriage entered into before effectivity of the Family Code can apply Section 29 of the Marriage Law (Act 3613) instead of Article 40 of the Family Code in declaring the marriage void.

Answer: No. Article 40 of the Family Code, which is a rule of procedure should be applied retroactively

Reasoning: Article 40 of the Family Code should be applied retroactively because Article 256 of the Family Code itself provides that said Code shall have retroactive effect insofar as it does not prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights. The retroactive application of procedural laws is

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not violative of any right of a person who may feel that he is adversely affected. As a general rule, no vested right may attach to nor arise from, procedural laws.

Holding: IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, the Motion for Reconsideration dated November 11, 2009 is DENIED with FINALITY.

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RE: COMPLAINT OF MRS. CORAZON S. SALVADOR AGAINST SPOUSES NOEL and AMELIA SERAFICO A.M. No. 2008-20-SC. March 15, 2010

PER CURIAM:

Procedural History: The subject matter of the instant administrative proceeding is the formal lettercomplaint1 dated August 20, 2008 filed by Corazon S. Salvador against Noel L. Serafico and Amelia G. Serafico for Bigamy, Immorality, Falsification, Grave Abuse of Authority, Deceit, Fraud, Conduct Unbecoming a Public Officer, and Violations of the Civil Service Code.

Statement of Facts: Corazon and Amelia met each other in January 2006, through an officemate of the latter in this Court. Corazon became very close to Amelia and her husband Noel, who was also working in the Court, because of business deals they got involved in. Corazon sent a letter and received by the Office of the Chief Justice (OCJ) as her formal complaint against Amelia and her husband Noel, which became the subject of the instant case. Corazon alleged that Amelia and Noel committed immorality and bigamy by marrying each other in a civil ceremony on February 3, 1994 even if Noel had a prior marriage to Rosemarie Jimeno on February 17, 1987. From this subsequent bigamous marriage, Noel and Amelia begot three children. For his part, Noel asserted that his first marriage to Rosemarie Jimeno on February 17, 1987 was null and void ab initio. Corazon countered that Noel had no authority to declare his previous marriage void ab initio, since only competent courts have the authority to do so. Moreover, she argued that Amelias defense of lack of knowledge about Noels previous marriage was a lie. Also, the OAS-SC found out that not only Noel had a prior marriage, but also Amelia, who was still married to Marc Michael A. Nacianceno,

Issues: Whether the marriage between Noel and Amelita is bigamous and thus committed immorality.

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Answer: Yes, because when they got married in 1994, both had existing marriages which had not yet been judicially annulled or nullified. Also, the lack of knowledge by Amelia of the fact that Noel had a subsisting marriage is not a valid defense, because she herself had a subsisting marriage with Marc Michael A. Nacianceno on February 20, 1991, which was not yet dissolved when she married Noel in 1994.

Reasoning: In a catena of cases, the court has consistently held that a judicial declaration of nullity is required before a valid subsequent marriage can be contracted; or else, what transpires is a bigamous marriage, reprehensible and immoral. Article 40 of the Family Code expressly requires a judicial declaration of nullity of marriage, thus:

Art. 40. The absolute nullity of a previous marriage may be invoked for purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void.

Holding: WHEREFORE, premises considered, we hereby resolve to: (1) DISMISS from the service, with forfeiture of all benefits except accrued leave credits, Noel L. Serafico, for Grave Misconduct, Disgraceful and Immoral Conduct, and violation of the Code of Conduct for Court Personnel; and (2) FORFEIT all the benefits, except accrued leave credits, of Amelia G. Serafico, for Grave Misconduct, Disgraceful and Immoral Conduct, and violation of the Code of Conduct for Court Personnel.

Both Noel L. Serafico and Amelia G. Serafico are BARRED from reemployment in any branch or instrumentality of government, including GOCCs.

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JUAN DE DIOS CARLOS v. FELICIDAD SANDOVAL G.R. No. 179922. December 16, 2008

REYES, R.T., J.:

Procedural History The case involves the review on certiorari the Decision of the Court of Appeals (CA) reversing and setting aside the summary judgment of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in an action for declaration of nullity of marriage between Felicidad Sandoval and Teofilo Carlos.

Statement of Facts: Teofilo Carlos and petitioner Juan De Dios Carlos were brothers who each have three parcels of land by virtue of inheritance. Later Teofilo died intestate. He was survived by respondents Felicidad Sandoval and their son, Teofilo Carlos II. Upon Teofilos death, two parcels of land were registered in the name of Felicidad and Teofilo II. In August 1995, Carlos commenced an action against respondents before the court a quo. In his complaint, Carlos asserted that the marriage between his late brother and Felicidad was a nullity in view of the absence of the required marriage license. On April 8, 1996, the RTC rendered judgment that the marriage is null and void abinito for lack of the requisite marriage license. The CA reversed and set aside the RTC ruling on October 15, 2002.

Issue: Whether or not the marriage of Felicidad Sandoval and Teofilo Carlos be declared void ab initio due to lack of marriage license.

Answer: Yes. The marriage of Felicidad Sandoval and Teofilo Carlos can be declared void ab initio due to lack of marriage license.

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Reasoning: A valid marriage license is among the formal requisites of marriage, the absence of which renders the marriage void ab initio pursuant to Article 80(3) in relation to Article 58 of the Civil Code. Article 80(3) states that marriages shall be void from the beginning those solemnized without a marriage license, except marriages of exceptional character. Furthermore, Article 53 of the Civil Code provides that no marriage shall be solemnized unless the required marriage license, except in a marriage of exceptional character.

Holding: The disposition of the RTC of its decision is vacated and set aside.

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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES v. DAYOT G.R. No. 175581. March 28, 2008

CHICO-NAZARIO, J.:

Procedural History: Before us are two consolidated petitions. G.R. No. 175581 and G.R. No. 179474 are Petitions for Review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court filed by the Republic of the Philippines and FelisaTecson-Dayot (Felisa), respectively, both challenging the Amended Decision1 of the Court of Appeals, dated 7 November 2006, in CA-G.R. CV No. 68759, which declared the marriage between Jose Dayot (Jose) and Felisa void ab initio.

Statement of Facts: Jose and Felisa were married at the Pasay City Hallon 24 November 1986. The marriage was solemnized by Rev. Tomas V. Atienza. In lieu of a marriage license, Jose and Felisa executed a sworn affidavit, also on the same date, attesting that both of them had attained the age of maturity, and that being unmarried, they had lived together as husband and wife for at least five years.

On 7 July 1993, Jose filed a Complaint for Annulment and/or Declaration of Nullity of Marriage with the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Bian, Laguna, Branch 25, contending that his marriage with Felisa was a sham, as no marriage ceremony was celebrated; that he did not execute the sworn affidavit stating that they had lived as husband and wife for at least five years; and that his consent to the marriage was secured through fraud. According to Jose, he met Felisa in 1986 and he came to live as a boarder in Felisas house, his landlady. Some three weeks later, Felisa requested him to accompany her to the Pasay City Hall, to allegedly claim a package sent to her by her brother from Saudi Arabia. At the City Hall, upon Felisas signal, a man bearing three folded pieces of paper approached them. They were told that Jose needed to sign the papers so that the package could be released to Felisa. He initially refused to do so. However, Felisa cajoled him, and told him that his refusal could get

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both of them killed by her brother who had learned about their relationship. Reluctantly, he signed the pieces of paper, and gave them to the man who immediately left. It was in February 1987 when he discovered that he had contracted marriage with Felisa. He alleged that he saw a piece of paper lying on top of the table at the sala of Felisas house. When he perused the same, he discovered that it was a copy of his marriage contract with Felisa. When he confronted Felisa, the latter feigned ignorance. In opposing the Complaint, Felisa denied Joses allegations and defended the validity of their marriage. She declared that they had maintained their relationship as man and wife absent the legality of marriage in the early part of 1980, but that she had deferred contracting marriage with him on account of their age difference. In her pre-trial brief, Felisa expounded that while her marriage to Jose was subsisting, the latter contracted marriage with a certain RufinaPascual (Rufina) on 31 August 1990. On 3 June 1993, Felisa filed an action for bigamy against Jose.

Issue: Whether or not the marriage between Jose and Felisa is valid considering the fact that it was facilitated by a fake affidavit in lieu of the marriage license requirement.

Answer: No, the marriage between petitioner and respondent is not valid but is void ab initio under Article 35 of the Family Code of the Philippines stating that a marriage solemnized without a valid marriage license shall be void from the beginning; their circumstance is not under the exemptions provided by law.

Reasoning: CA undoubtedlyestablished that Jose and Felisa have not lived together as husband and wife for at least five years at the time they executed their sworn affidavit and contracted marriage. Jose and Felisa started living together only in June 1986, or barely five months before the celebration of their marriage on November 1986. Findings of facts of the Court of Appeals are binding in the Supreme Court.Under Article 4 of the Family Code of the Philippines, the absence of any of the essential or formal requisites shall render the marriage void ab initio,

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whereas a defect in any of the essential requisites shall render the marriage voidable. In the instant case, it is clear from the evidence presented that petitioner and respondent did not have a marriage license when they contracted their marriage. Furthermore, the falsity of the allegation in the sworn affidavit relating to the period of Jose and Felisas cohabitation, which would have qualified their marriage as an exception to the requirement for a marriage license, cannot be a mere irregularity, for it refers to a quintessential fact that the law precisely required to be deposed and attested to by the parties under oath. If the essential matter in the sworn affidavit is a lie, then it is but a mere scrap of paper, without force and effect. Hence, it is as if there was no affidavit at all.

Holding: The Petitions are DENIED. The Amended Decision of the Court of Appeals, dated 7 November 2006 in CA-G.R. CV No. 68759, declaring the marriage of Jose Dayot to FelisaTecson-Dayot void ab initio, is AFFIRMED, without prejudice to their criminal liability, if any.

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UGALDE v. DE YSASI G.R. No. 130623. February 29, 2008

CARPIO, J.:

Procedural History: Before the Court is a petition for review assailing the 21 November 1996 Decisionand 2 September 1997 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CV No. 41121.

Statement of Facts: Petitioner Lorea de Ugalde and respondent Jon de Ysasi got married on 15 February 1951, before Municipal Judge Remigio Pea of Hinigaran, Negros Occidental and on 1 March 1951,their church wedding was solemnized byRev. Msgr. FlavianoArriolaat San Sebastian Cathedral in Bacolod City. Petitioner and respondent did not execute any ante-nuptial agreement. They had a son named Jon de Ysasi III.

The spouses then separated sometime in April 1957. On 26 May 1964, Ysasiallegedly contracted another marriage with Victoria Eleanor Smith before Judge Lucio M. Tanco of Pasay City. Petitioner further alleged that respondent and Smith had been acquiring and disposing of real and personal properties to her prejudice as the lawful wife and that she had been defrauded of rental income, profits, and fruits of their conjugal properties.

Petitioner filed a petition for dissolution of the conjugal partnership of gains against respondent before the Regional Trial Court of Negros Occidental, Bacolod City asking for her conjugal share in respondent's inheritance from his deceased parents, for monthly support; annulment of all contracts, agreements, and documents signed and ratified by respondent with third persons without her consent; and payment of appearance and attorney's fees, among others. Respondent countered that on June 2, 1961 they had an agreement that their conjugal partnership of gains shall be deemed dissolved on April 15, 1957;thereafter, they instituted a case in the Court of First Instance of Negros Occidental for an amicable settlement which was approved by the same through its order dated June 6, 1961.

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Respondent further allegedto the Regional Trial Court that petitioner already obtained a divorce from him before the Supreme Court of Mexico. Petitioner then contracted a second marriage with Richard Galowayand after the latters death, petitioner contracted a third marriage with Frank Scholey and moved for the dismissal of the dissolution of their conjugal partnership of gains on grounds of estoppel, laches and res judicata. Respondent also alleged that their marriage was void because it was executed without the benefit of the requisite marriage license on which the trial court ruled considering that the marriage between petitioner and respondent was solemnized without a marriage license, the marriage was null and void, and no community of property was formed between them, the court of appeals also added that the amicable settlement was a valid contract between the parties since it was entered into freely, voluntarily, and with the full understanding of its consequence.

Issue: Whether or not the marriage between the petitioner and respondent is void ab initio, being executed without the benefit of the requisite marriage license, and that therefore, no conjugal partnership of gains existed between them.

Answer: Yes, the marriage between the petitioner and respondent is void ab initio, being executed without the benefit of the requisite marriage license. Thus, this is a violation of the Family Code of the Philippines that the requisite of a valid marriage license is essential to have a valid marriage.

Reasoning: The absence of a marriage license is fatal and made the marriage between petitioner and respondent a complete nullity. Hence, the trial court did not err in finding that there was no conjugal partnership of gains between petitioner and respondent. The Court of Appeals further ruled that the compromise agreement is a valid contract between the parties since the compromise agreement was entered into freely, voluntarily, and with the full understanding of its consequences, it is conclusive and binding on the parties. The Court of Appeals also ruled that the action was barred by laches since it was filed by petitioner 23 years from the time the CFI

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approved the additional amicable settlement in Civil Case No. 4791. The Court of Appeals sustained the trial courts ruling that respondents right over the estate of his deceased parents was only inchoate and there was no evidence that petitioner and respondent acquired any property that could be considered conjugal.

Holding: The petition is DENIED. The result of the 21 November 1996 Decision and of the 2 September 1997 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CV No. 41121 is AFFIRMED.

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REINEL ANTHONY B. DE CASTRO vs. ANNABELLE ASSIDAO-DE CASTRO G.R. No. 160172. February 13, 2008

TINGA, J.:

Procedural History This is a petition for review of the Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-GR CV No. 69166, declaring that (1) Reianna Tricia A. De Castro is the legitimate child of the petitioner; and (2) that the marriage between petitioner and respondent is valid until properly nullified by a competent court in a proceeding instituted for that purpose.

Statement of Facts: Petitioner and respondent were married on March 13, 1995 with Judge Jose C. Bernabe executing an affidavit that they had been living together as husband and wife for at least five years in lieu of the marriage license. Since their childs birth, the respondent has been the one supporting her out of her income. On June 4, 1998, the respondent filed a complaint for support against petitioner. The petitioner denied that he is married to respondent, claiming that their marriage is void ab initio since the marriage was facilitated by a fake affidavit. He also averred that they never lived together as husband and wife and that he has never seen nor acknowledged the child.

Issue: Whether or not the marriage of the petitioner and the respondent is valid.

Answer: No. The marriage of the petitioner and the respondent is not valid.

Reasoning: Under the Family Code, the absence of any of the essential or formal requisites shall render the marriage void ab initio, whereas a defect in any of the essential requisites shall render the marriage voidable. The failure of the petitioner and respondent to obtain and present a

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marriage license renders their marriage void ab initio. The falsity of the affidavit cannot be considered as a mere irregularity in the formal requisites of marriage.

Holding: The assailed Decision and Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-GR CV No. 69166 are set aside and the decision of the Regional Trial Court Branch 70 of Pasig City in JDRC No. 4626 dated October 16, 2000 is hereby reinstated.

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