DIVORCE IN THE PHILIPPINES

A few months ago Malta, a small country in Europe allowed the passage of their divorce law. Which leaves the Philippines and Vatican the only countries which prohibits divorce, with this, is it now time for us to allow divorce? HIS VIEWS A look back at Philippine history would show that the idea of divorce was not alien to Philippine culture. From a legal standpoint, absolute divorce was allowed in the Philippines during the Japanese occupation and during pre-colonization by Spain when both men and women were allowed to obtain divorce on the grounds of infidelity, childlessness, and failure to fulfil marital obligations. Spain put a damper on these liberties when women rights were diffused through the stringent dictates of the Catholic hierarchy. In the process of having divorce legalized in the Philippines, several measures have already been presented in the Philippine Congress, the latest of which being House Bill No. 1799 introduced by Congresswomen Luzviminda Ilagan and Emerenciana De Jesus in the latter part of 2010. Our country although does not have a divorce law, allows relative divorce in the form of legal separation which is included in the family code. The changing times liberalized the views of individuals towards divorce, what’s left of divorceless countries are the strong faith and respect it has for religion. It is not just the strong faith of the Filipinos towards Catholicism but it is also provided by law which prohibits the existence of absolute divorce in our country. First, the 1987 constitution in article XV section 2 which provides that marriage is an inviolable social institution, it is the foundation of the family and shall be protected by the state, a divorce law would may be inconsistent with this provision in that the protection of marriage as a foundation of the family must be the utmost priority of the state. Further, the family code in article 1 provides that Marriage is a special contract of PERMANENT UNION entered into in accordance with law for the establishment of a conjugal and family life. Why the need for a divorce law, when there are options to end bad marriages legally? These are the following: 1. Legal Separation, which allows the couple to separate on the basis of repeated violence and physical abuse, sexual infidelity, conviction of a criminal offense with a penalty of more than six years, and abandonment. But this option does not allow the couple to re-marry and requires that they maintain fidelity. So individuals legally separated from their spouses should not have any sexual relations, lest they be charged with concubinage or adultery. 2. Declaration of nullity of marriage declares a marriage void from the very beginning. Children in this type of marriage are considered illegitimate. This legal option is available to minors who married without parental consent and those who were married by an unauthorized person. Bigamous

this people would simply divorce their old partners and marry their new ones. and of course the divorce law will pretty much be of favour for them. or homosexuality may also file for annulment. Many couples out of collision between them end up having psychologically stressed out and commit crimes and becomes violent. HER VIEWS Having a divorce law is one way to correct huge problems in the philippines. many people simply “rearrange” their familial relations without legal sanction. technically. Should the Philippines follow the rest of the world? Well. Couples married under deceitful circumstances such as the failure to inform the other party of a sexually transmitted disease. If divorce was possible. and they approved the law. Article 36 of the Family Code states that a marriage can be declared void if one of the parties is psychologically incapacitated to perform his or her marital obligations. even though they may be technically married to someone else. the Vatican also doesn’t have one.” However. addiction. The Philippines is now the only country in the world without a divorce law. 3. and they have a new set of shared responsibilities. without divorce. mistaken identity. They do that because they wanted to get out of that horrible situation or just an effect of the course. and incestuous marriages may also be declared void from the very beginning. Which do you think is better— to have a divorce and be normal again. On the contrary. they live together with new partners. This has often been used by couples seeking a way out of marriages and is sometimes dubbed as the “Philippine de facto Divorce Law. This is obviously alarmist and not based on fact. a pregnancy involving another man. impotence. An annulment declares the marriage legal until it is declared void. we are now the only country left. Well.marriages. the children will feel at home in both their parent’s . The ex-couple become co-parents. divorce may actually promote marriage and the family. the children will still have both parents. the divorce law would still lie in the hands of the lawmakers in our country which mostly are common customers of the products of failed marriages. When a couple is divorced. If they arrange things well. who will both have an opportunity to participate in their life. Divorce has been around for some time in many countries. This legal option is available to minors married without parental consent and to individuals who may have been of unsound mind at the time of the marriage. So. whom they couldn’t marry. Now. and the family still seems to be going strong. The church claims that a divorce law will spell the end of the Filipino family. but they don’t have married couples either! Malta had a referendum on 28 May about divorce. why not? It is a good idea to have divorce as a way out for people trapped in failed marriages. Staying with a person you don’t feel like keeping is more sinful than legally breaking ties and legally remarry. or push yourself hard to figure out how to make things work although the relationship is way off to get reconciled. criminal conviction.

Let's face the reality: there are good and bad marriages. the parent who doesn’t have custody to the children has less rights to participate in their upbringing. NEBRES RAPHAELA G. This is pursuant to the statutory provision that where a marriage between a Filipino citizen and a foreigner is validly celebrated and a divorce is thereafter validly obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating him or her to remarry. the country already has a de facto divorce law in the provision for annulment. will the strong influence of the church still dictate the changing looks of society or will it be the liberal views of modern Filipinos? SIDNEY E. Some obtain dual citizenship to be able to get a divorce abroad because it’s not available in the Philippines. They will be much better off than when they were in one home and their parents were always fighting. When a couple’s marriage is annulled. the Filipino spouse shall likewise have capacity to remarry under Philippine law. Many Filipinos who work overseas return to the Philippines and find out that their spouse already has another partner. ALBOR . Besides. so there are an option the good marriages will be strengthened and the bad marriages will be resolved. but poor couples cannot avail themselves of this because it is expensive and time-consuming. An absolute divorce bill would address the problems of Filipinos abroad. CONCURRENCE Only time will tell if Divorce be allowed in our country. and the need to make alimony or child support payments. The family and marriages will also gain from divorce since partners will be discouraged from straying by the threat of divorce.homes.

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