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[Various laws prove that marriage is an inviolable social institution, e.g. RA 6955 (bans mail order brides),
the Constitution & the Labor Code, thus making it illegal for an employer to terminate an employee who is
married/marries save exceptional circumstances.]

G.R. No. 118978, May 23, 1997
This is a case for illegal dismissal filed by Grace de Guzman against PT&T.
Grace de Guzman is a probationary employee of PT&T. In her job application, she represented that she was
single although she was married. When management found out, she was made to explain. However, her
explanation was found unsatisfactory so she was subsequently dismissed from work.
Grace thus filed a case for illegal dismissal against PT&T with RAB. According to the Labor Arbiter, Grace,
who had already gained the status of regular employee, was illegally dismissed by PT&T. Moreover, he ruled
that Grace was apparently discriminated against on account of her having contracted marriage in violation of
company rules.
On appeal to the NLRC, the decision of the Labor Arbiter was upheld. The Motion for Reconsideration was
likewise rebuffed, hence, this special civil action.
Petitioner argued that the dismissal was not because Grace was married but because of her concealment of
the fact that she was married. Such concealment amounted to dishonesty, which was why she was dismissed
from work.

Whether or not the company policy of not accepting married women for employment was discriminatory
Whether or not Graces act of concealment amounted to dishonesty, leading to loss of confidence
Whether or not Grace was illegally dismissed

There was discrimination
Article 136 of the Labor Code explicitly prohibits discrimination merely by reason of the marriage of a female
Petitioners policy of not accepting or considering as disqualified from work any woman worker who
contracts marriage runs afoul of the test of, and the right against, discrimination, afforded all women workers
by our labor laws and by no less than the Constitution. Contrary to petitioners assertion that it dismissed
private respondent from employment on account of her dishonesty, the record discloses clearly that her ties
with the company were dissolved principally because of the companys policy that married women are not
qualified for employment in PT&T, and not merely because of her supposed acts of dishonesty.
Concealment did not amount to willful dishonesty
Verily, private respondents act of concealing the true nature of her status from PT&T could not be
properly characterized as willful or in bad faith as she was moved to act the way she did mainly because she
wanted to retain a permanent job in a stable company. In other words, she was practically forced by that very
same illegal company policy into misrepresenting her civil status for fear of being disqualified from work.
While loss of confidence is a just cause for termination of employment, it should not be simulated. It must rest
on an actual breach of duty committed by the employee and not on the employers caprices. Furthermore, it
should never be used as a subterfuge for causes which are improper, illegal, or unjustified.
However, SC nevertheless ruled that Grace did commit an act of dishonesty, which should be sanctioned
and therefore agreed with the NLRCs decision that the dishonesty warranted temporary suspension of Grace
from work.
Grace attained regular status as an employee
Private respondent, it must be observed, had gained regular status at the time of her dismissal. When she
was served her walking papers on Jan. 29, 1992, she was about to complete the probationary period of 150
days as she was contracted as a probationary employee on September 2, 1991. That her dismissal would be
effected just when her probationary period was winding down clearly raises the plausible conclusion that it
was done in order to prevent her from earning security of tenure.
There was illegal dismissal
As an employee who had therefore gained regular status, and as she had been dismissed without just
cause, she is entitled to reinstatement without loss of seniority rights and other privileges and to full back
wages, inclusive of allowances and other benefits or their monetary equivalent.

On Stipulation against Marriage
In the final reckoning, the danger of PT&Ts policy against marriage is that it strikes at the very essence,
ideals and purpose of marriage as an inviolable social institution and, ultimately, of the family as the
foundation of the nation.

ARTICLE 2, 12, Consti
The State recognizes the sancity of fam life & shall protect & strengthen the fam as a basic autonomous
social institution. It shall equally protect the life of the mother & the life of the unborn from conception. The
natural & primary right & duty of parents in the rearing of the youth for civic efficiency & the development of
moral character shall receive the support of the Government.

The mere act of marriage creates an obligation on the part of the husband to support his wife; an obligation,
the enforcement of w/c is of such vital concern to the state itself that the law will not permit him to terminate it
by his own wrongful acts.

G.R. No. 11263 November 2, 1916
FACTS: This is an action for support by G (wife) against R (husband). After 1 mo. of marriage, R repeatedly
demanded from G to perform "unchaste and lascivious acts on R's genitals." Bec. of G's refusal, R maltreated
G by word and deed, inflicting bodily injuries on G. To escape R's lewd designs and avoid further harm, G left
the conjugal home and took refuge in her parent's house. G filed an action for support w/ the trial court. This
was dismissed on the ground that R could not be compelled to give support if G lived outside of the conjugal
home, unless there was legal sep. G appealed.

HELD: Marriage is something more than a mere contract. It is a new relation, the rights, duties, and
obligations of w/c rest not upon the agreement of the parties but upon the general law w/c defines and
prescribes those rights, duties, and obligations. Marriage is an institution, in the maintenance of w/c in its
purity the public is deeply interested. It is a relation for life and the parties cannot terminate it at any shorter
period by virtue of any contract they may make. The reciprocal rights arising from this relation, so long as it
continues, are such as the law determines from time to time and none other. When the legal existence of the
parties is merged into one by marriage, the new relation is regulated and controlled by the state or govt upon
principles of public policy for the benefit of society as well as the parties. And when the object of a marriage is
defeated by rendering its continuance intolerable to one of the parties and productive of no possible good to
the community, relief in some way should be obtainable.
The law provides that the H, who is obliged to support the wife, may fulfill this obligation either by paying her a
fixed pension or by maintaining her in his own home at his option. However, the option given by law is not
absolute. The law will not permit the H to evade or terminate his obligation to support his wife if the wife is
driven away from the conjugal home bec. of the H's own wrongful acts. In this case, where the wife was
forced to leave the conjugal abode bec. of the lewd designs and physical assaults of the H, the W may claim
support from the H for separate maintenance even outside of the conjugal home.

Although a marriage contract is considered primary evidence of marriage, the failure to present it is not proof
that no marriage took place other evidence may be presented to prove marriage.

G.R. No. 83598, March 7, 1997
This is an action for partition brought by Ramonito and Generoso Balogbog against Leoncia and
Gaudioso Balogbog. Ramonito and Generoso claimed that they were the legitimate children of Catalina and
Gavino, the elder brother of Leoncia and Gaudioso. Gavino died in 1935, predeceasing their parents, the
grandparents of Ramonito and Generoso.
Ramonito and Generoso presented witnesses: one, the mayor of Asturias from 1928 to 1934, another,
who was a family friend, and Catalina herself. For its part, defendants denied knowing Ramonito and
Generoso and claimed that Gavino died single and without issue. As proof of this, they presented certificates
showing that there was no record in the Register of both the marriage between Gavino and Catalina and the
birth of Ramonito.
The lower court rendered judgment in favor of Ramonito and Generoso. CA affirmed, holding that private
respondents failed to overcome the legal presumption that a man and a woman deporting themselves as
husband and wife are in fact married, that a child is presumed to be legitimate, and that things happen
according to the ordinary course of nature and the ordinary habits of life. Hence this petition.

Whether or not the presumption of marriage applies
Whether or not Ramonito and Generoso were legitimate children of Gavino

The SC found no reversible error committed by the CA.
Petitioner contends that the marriage of Gavino and Catalina should be proven in accordance of Arts. 53
and 54 of the Civil Code of 1889 (only by a certified copy of the memorandum in the Civil Registry) since the
marriage was celebrated when such law was in effect.
But the SC noted that Arts. 42 to 107 of the Civil Code of 1889 of Spain did not take effect, having been
suspended by the Governor General of the Philippines shortly after the extension of that code to this country.
Consequently, Arts. 53 and 54 never came into force. Since this case was brought in the lower court in 1968,
the existence of the marriage must be determined in accordance with the present Civil Code, which repealed
the provisions of the former Civil Code, except as they related to vested rights, and the rules on evidence.
Under the Rules of Court, the presumption is that a man and a woman conducting themselves as
husband and wife are legally married. This presumption may be rebutted only by cogent proof to the contrary.
Evidence consisting of the testimonies of witnesses was held competent to prove the marriage. Indeed,
although a marriage contract is considered primary evidence of marriage, the failure to present it is not proof
that no marriage took place. Other evidence may be presented to prove marriage.

Rationale for the presumption

The law favors the validity of marriage, because the State is interested in the preservation of the family
and the sanctity of the family is a matter of constitutional concern.
Adong vs. Cheong Seng Gee: The basis of human society throughout the civilized world is that of
marriage. Marriage in this jurisdiction is not only a civil contract, but it is a new relation, an institution in the
maintenance of which the public is deeply interested. Consequently, every intendment of the law leans toward
legalizing matrimony. Persons dwelling together in apparent matrimony are presumed, in the absence of any
counter-presumption or evidence special to the case, to be in fact married. The reason is that such is the
common order of society, and if the parties were not what they thus hold themselves out as being, they would
be living in the constant violation of decency and of law. A presumption established by our Code of Civil
Procedure is that a man and a woman deporting themselves as husband and wife have entered into a lawful
contract of marriage. Semper praesumitur pro matrimonio. Always presume marriage.

Legitimacy of Children
The SC held that the fact that there was no record of birth in the Civil Registry does not mean that
Ramonito and Generoso were not legitimate children. Their legitimacy was proved by testimony of witnesses,
including Catalina, the mother herself. Moreover, there was submitted an official transcript of an investigation
before the Police Investigation Committee of Balamban, Cebu, wherein Gaudioso himself admitted that
Ramonito is his nephew.
The Court held this admission of relationship as admissible against Gaudioso as a reliable declaration
against interest.


Phil. Law does not recognize common law marriages

G.R. No. 85140 May 17, 1990
Vitaliana Vargas brothers and sisters unaware of the formers death on August 28, 1988 filed a petition for
Habeas Corpus on September 27, 1988 before the RTC of Misamis Oriental alleging that she was forcible taken
from her residence sometime in 1987 and was confined by the herein petitioner, Tomas Eugenio in his palacial
residence in Jasaan, Misamis Oriental. The court then issued a writ of habeas corpus but petitioner refused to
surrender the Vitalianas body to the sheriff on the ground that a corpse cannot be subjected to habeas corpus
proceedings. Vitaliana, 25 year old single, died of heart failure due to toxemia of pregnancy in Eugenios
residence. The court ordered that the body should be delivered to a funeral parlor for autopsy but Eugenio
assailed the lack of jurisdiction of the court.

ISSUE: Whether or not the petitioner can claim custody of the deceased.

The court held that the custody of the dead body of Vitaliana was correctly awarded to the surviving brothers
and sisters pursuant to Section 1103 of the Revised Administrative Code which provides:

Persons charged with duty of burial- if the deceased was an unmarried man or woman or a child and left any kin;
the duty of the burial shall devolve upon the nearest kin of the deceased.

Albeit, petitioner claims he is the spouse as contemplated under Art. 294 of the Civil Code, Philippine law
does not recognize common law marriages where a man and a woman not legally married who cohabit for many
years as husband and wife, who represent themselves to the public as husband and wife, and who are reputed to
be husband and wife in the community where they live may be considered legally mauled in common law
jurisdictions. In addition, it requires that the man and woman living together must not in any way be
incapacitated to contract marriage. Whereas, the petitioner has a subsisting marriage with another woman, legal
impediment that disqualified him from even legally marrying Vitaliana.

The fact alone that [a judge does] not sign the marriage certificate or contract, the same [does] not bear a
date & the parties & the Local Civil Registrar [is] not furnished a copy of the marriage certificate, do not by
themselves show that [a judge] did not solemnize the marriage.

A.M. No. MTJ-92-721 September 30, 1994
Complainants (Juvy Cosca et al.,) are employees of the Municipal Trial Court of Tinambac, Camarines
Sur. Respondent Judge Lucio P. Palaypayon Jr., is the Presiding Judge of the same Court while Nelia
Esmeralda-Baroy is the Clerk of Court. An administrative complaint
was field with the Office of the Court Administrator charging respondents , among others, illegal solemnization
of marriage. Complainants alleged that respondent Judge solemnized 6 marriages even without the requisite
marriage license. As a consequence, their marriage contracts did not reflect any marriage license
number. The respondent Judge did not sign their marriage contracts and did not indicate the date of
solemnization, the reason being that he allegedly had to wait for the marriage license to be submitted by the
parties which was usually several days after the ceremony.
Indubitably, the marriage contracts were not filed with the local civil registrar.

ISSUE: Whether the marriage solemnized by Judge Palaypayon were valid.

Bocaya & Besmontes marriage was solemnized without a marriage license along with the other
couples. The testimonies of Bocay and Pompeo Ariola including the photographs taken showed that it was
really Judge Palaypayon who solemnized their marriage. Bocaya declared that they were advised by judge to
return after 10 days after the solemnization and bring with them their marriage license. They already started
living together as husband and wife even without the formal requisite. With respect to the photographs, judge
explained that it was a simulated solemnization of marriage and not a real one. However, considering that
there were pictures from the start of the wedding ceremony up to the signing of the marriage certificates in
front of him. The court held that it is hard to believe that it was simulated.
On the other hand, Judge Palaypayon admitted that he solemnized marriage between Abellano & Edralin
and claimed it was under Article 34 of the Civil Code so the marriage license was dispensed with considering
that the contracting parties executed a joint affidavit that they have been living together as husband and wife
for almost 6 years already. However, it was shown in the marriage contract that Abellano was only 18 yrs
2months and 7 days old. If he and Edralin had been living together for 6 years already before they got
married as what is stated in the joint affidavit, Abellano must have been less than 13 years old when they
started living together which is hard to believe. Palaypayon should have been aware, as it is his duty to
ascertain the qualification of the contracting parties who might have executed a false joint affidavit in order to
avoid the marriage license requirement.
The Family Code pertinently proves that the formal requisites of marriage are, inter alia, a valid marriage
license except in the cases provided for therein. Complementarily, it declares that the absence of any of the
essential or formal requisites shall generally render the marriage void ab initio and that , while an irregularity
in the formal requisites shall not affect the validity of the marriage, the party or parties responsible for the
irregularity shall be civilly , criminally and administratively liable.
* The civil aspect is addressed to the contracting parties and those affected by the illegal marriage, and what
we are providing for herein pertains to the administrative liability of respondents, all without prejudice to their
criminal responsible. The Revised Penal Code provides that priests or ministers of any religious
denomination or sect, or civil authorities who shall perform or authorize any illegal marriage ceremony shall
be punished in accordance with the provisions of the Marriage Law. This is of course, within the province of
the prosecutorial agencies of the Government.

Mere breach of promise to marry is not an actionable wrong. But to formally set a wedding & go thru
[wedding] preparation[s] & publicity, only to walk out of it when the matrimony is about to be solemnized, is
quite different. This is palpably & unjustifiably contrary to good customs for w/c defendant must be held
answerable in damages in accordance w/ art. 21 [of the CC].

G.R. No. L-20089 December 26, 1964
On August 23, 1954 plaintiff and defendant applied for a license to contract marriage, which was
subsequently issued. Their wedding was set for September 4, 1954. Invitations were printed and distributed to
relatives, friends and acquaintances. The bride-to-be's trousseau, party dresses and other apparel for the
important occasion were purchased. Dresses for the maid of honor and the flower girl were prepared. A
matrimonial bed, with accessories, was bought. Bridal showers were given and gifts received. And then, with but
two days before the wedding, defendant, who was then 28 years old,: simply left a note for plaintiff stating: "Will
have to postpone wedding My mother opposes it ... " He enplaned to his home city in Mindanao, and the next
day, the day before the wedding, he wired plaintiff: "Nothing changed rest assured returning soon." But he never
returned and was never heard from again.

Whether or not breach of promise to marry is an actionable wrong?

Mere breach of promise to marry is not an actionable wrong. But to formally set a wedding and go through all
the preparation and publicity, only to walk out of it when the matrimony is about to be solemnized, is quite
different. This is palpably and unjustifiably contrary to good customs for which defendant must be held
answerable in damages in accordance with Article 21 of the Civil Code


Under Art. 7, marriage may be solemnized by, among others, any incumbent member of the judiciary w/in the
courts jurisdiction. Art. 8, w/c is a directory provision, refers only to the venue of the marriage ceremony &
does not alter or qualify the authority of the solemnizing officer as provided in the preceding provision. A priest
who is commissioned & allowed by his local ordinary to marry the faithful, is authorized to do so only w/in the
area of the diocese or place allowed by his Bishop. An appellate court Justice or a Justice of [the SC] has
jurisdiction over the entire Phils. to solemnize marriages, regardless of the venue, as long as the requisites of
the law are complied w/. However, judges who are appointed to specific jurisdictions, may officiate in
weddings only w/in said areas & not beyond.

A.M. No. MTJ-96-1088. July 19, 1996
Respondent Judge was alleged to have committed two specific acts exhibiting gross misconduct as well as
inefficiency in office and ignorance of the law:
a) Respondent Judge solemnized the marriage between Gaspar Tagadan and Arlyn Borja on September
27, 1994 despite the lack of a summary proceeding for the declaration of Mr. Tagadans first wifes (Ida
Pearanda) presumptive death. Respondent states that the joint affidavit presented by the groom confirming
the fact that Mr. Tagadan and his first wife have not seen each other for almost seven years is sufficient proof
of Ida Pearandas presumptive death, and therefore, an ample reason for him to proceed with the marriage
b) Respondent Judge performed a marriage ceremony between Floriano Dador Sumaylo and Gemma G.
del Rosario outside his courts jurisdiction on October 27, 1994. Respondent maintains that this is not a
violation of Article 7 (1) of the Family Code which states that: Marriage may be solemnized by: (1) Any
incumbent member of the judiciary within the courts jurisdiction; and that Article 8 which states, a marriage
can be held outside of the judges chambers or courtroom only in the following instances: (1) at the point of
death, (2) in remote places in accordance with Article 29 or (3) upon request of both parties in writing in a
sworn statement to this effect thereof applies to the case in question.

(1) Whether or not the marriages solemnized by the respondent judge are valid under the Family Code; and
(2) Whether or not respondent is subject to administrative liability

First marriage is not valid. Article 41 of the Family Code requires that even if the spouse present has a
well-founded belief that the absent spouse was already dead, a summary proceeding for the declaration of
presumptive death is necessary in order to contract a subsequent marriage. Since Gaspar Tagadan failed to
present such judicial declaration, he remains married to Ida Pearanda. Respondent judge erred in accepting
the joint affidavit submitted by the groom. The marriage solemnized has resulted in a bigamous, and therefore
void, marriage as provided under Article 35 of the Family Code, The following marriage shall be void from the
beginning; (4) Those bigamous x x x marriages not falling under Article 41.
Second marriage is valid. Under Article 3 of the Family Code, one of the formal requisites of marriage is
the authority of the solemnizing officer. Under Article 7(1), marriage may be solemnized by, among others,
any incumbent member of the Judiciary within the Courts jurisdiction. Respondent Judge holds jurisdiction
in the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Sta. Maria-Burgos, Surigao del Norte. The wedding between Floriano
Dador Sumaylo and Gemma G. del Rosario was solemnized at the respondent Judges residence in the
municipality of Dapa, which does not fall within his jurisdictional area. Article 8, which is a directory provision,
refers only to the venue of the marriage ceremony and does not alter or qualify the authority of the
solemnizing officer as provided in the preceding provision. Article 8 requires both parties to present a written
request. The written request presented addressed to respondent judge was made by only one party, Gemma
del Rosario. Where a judge solemnizes a marriage outside his courts jurisdiction, while there is a resultant
irregularity in the formal requisite laid down in Article 3, the validity of the marriage is not affected. It is the
officiating official, respondent Judge, who shall be subject to administrative liability.

[A judge who solemnizes a marriage out of human compassion may nonetheless be liable for violating the law
on marriage.]

A.M. No. MTJ-021390 April 11, 2002
Mercedita Araes charges respondent judge with Gross Ignorance of the Law. Respondent is the
Presiding Judge of the Municipal Trial Court of Balatan, Camarines Sur who performed Marcedita
Araes marriage to the late Dominador R. Orobia even without a marriage license. Since the
marriage was a nullity, petitioner could not inherit her late husbands property and receive pensions.
In his comment dated February 15, 2000, respondent judge averred that a certain Juan Arroyo
requested him to solemnize a marriage of the parties on February 17, 2000 in his sala at the MTC
Balatan. However, on Feb 17, 2000, Arroyo informed him that Orobia had difficulty walking and could
not stand the rigors of traveling to Balatan and requested him to solemnize the marriage in Nabua, to
which request he acceded.
Respondent judge further averred that while carefully examining the documents, respondent judge
discovered that the parties did not posses the marriage license. He refused to solemnize the marriage
and suggested its resetting to another date. But the parties pleaded and so he proceeded to
solemnize the marriage due to human compassion and fear that it might aggravate the condition of
Orobia who just suffered from a stroke. After the solemnization, he reiterated the necessity of the
marriage license and admonished the parties that failure to give it would render the marriage void.
On September 12, 2001, petitioner filed her Affidavit of Desistance attesting that respondent judge
initially refused to solemnize their marriage. She confessed that she filed this Administrative case out
of rage.
Whether or not the respondent judge should be held liable for solemnizing a marriage outside his
territorial jurisdiction and without marriage license despite the petitioners Affidavit of Desistance.
The territorial jurisdiction of respondent judge is limited to the municipality of Balatan, Camarines Sur.
Under Article 3 of The Family Code of the Philippines, one of the requisites of marriage is the
authority of the solemnizing officer. Where a judge solemnizes a marriage outside his courts
jurisdiction, there is a resultant irregularity in the formal requisite laid down in Article 3.
The judges act of solemnizing the marriage of petitioner and Orobia in Nabua, Camarines Sur
therefore is contrary to law and subjects him to administrative liability. Respondent judge should also
be faulted for solemnizing a marriage without the requisite marriage license.
In People v Lara, it was held that a marriage which preceded the issuance of the marriage license is
void and that the subsequent issuance of license cannot render valid or even add an iota of validity to
the marriage. Except in cases provided by law, it is the marriage license that gives the solemnizing
officer the authority to solemnize a marriage. Respondent judge did not posses such authority when
he solemnized the marriage of petitioner. In this respect, respondent judge acted in gross ignorance
of the law.


The primary evidence of a marriage must be an authentic copy of the marriage contract. While a marriage
may be proved by other competent evidence, the absence of the contract must first be satisfactorily
explained. Proof of loss of the [marriage] contract or of any other satisfactory reason for its non-production
[should be] first presented to the court.

G.R. No. L-40098 August 29, 1975
Private respondent Tan Put alleged that she is the widow of Tee Hoon Lim Po Chuan, who was a partner
and practically the owner who has controlling interest of Glory Commercial Company and a Chinese Citizen
until his death. Defendant Antonio Lim Tanhu and Alfonso Leonardo Ng Sua were partners in name but they
were mere employees of Po Chuan and were naturalized Filipino Citizens. Tan Put filed complaint against
spouses-petitoner Lim Tanhu and Dy Ochay including their son Tech Chuan and the other spouses-petitoner
Ng Sua and Co Oyo including also their son Eng Chong Leonardo, that through fraud and machination took
actual and active management of the partnership and that she alleged entitlement to share not only in the
capital and profits of the partnership but also in the other assets, both real and personal, acquired by the
partnership with funds of the latter during its lifetime."
According to the petitioners, Ang Siok Tin is the legitimate wife, still living, and with whom Tee Hoon had
four legitimate children, a twin born in 1942, and two others born in 1949 and 1965, all presently residing in
Hong Kong. Tee Hoon died in 1966 and as a result of which the partnership was dissolved and what
corresponded to him were all given to his legitimate wife and children.
Tan Put prior of her alleged marriage with Tee Hoon on 1949, was engaged in the drugstore business;
that not long after her marriage, upon the suggestion of the latter sold her drugstore for P125,000.00 which
amount she gave to her husband as investment in Glory Commercial Co. sometime in 1950; that after the
investment of the above-stated amount in the partnership its business flourished and it embarked in the
import business and also engaged in the wholesale and retail trade of cement and GI sheets and under huge
Defendants interpose that Tan Put knew that she was merely the common-law wife of Tee Hoon. Tan
Put and Tee Hoon were childless but the former had a foster child, Antonio Nunez.

ISSUE: Whether Tan Put, as she alleged being married with Tee Hoon, can claim from the company of the
latters share.

Under Article 55 of the Civil Code, the declaration of the contracting parties that they take each other as
husband and wife "shall be set forth in an instrument" signed by the parties as well as by their witnesses and
the person solemnizing the marriage. Accordingly, the primary evidence of a marriage must be an authentic
copy of the marriage contract. While a marriage may also be proved by other competent evidence, the
absence of the contract must first be satisfactorily explained. Surely, the certification of the person who
allegedly solemnized a marriage is not admissible evidence of such marriage unless proof of loss of the
contract or of any other satisfactory reason for its non-production is first presented to the court. In the case at
bar, the purported certification issued by a Mons. Jose M. Recoleto, Bishop, Philippine Independent Church,
Cebu City, is not, therefore, competent evidence, there being absolutely no showing as to unavailability of the
marriage contract and, indeed, as to the authenticity of the signature of said certifier, the jurat allegedly signed
by a second assistant provincial fiscal not being authorized by law, since it is not part of the functions of his
office. Besides, inasmuch as the bishop did not testify, the same is hearsay.
An agreement with Tee Hoon was shown and signed by Tan Put that she received P40,000 for her
subsistence when they terminated their relationship of common-law marriage and promised not to interfere
with each others affairs since they are incompatible and not in the position to keep living together
permanently. Hence, this document not only proves that her relation was that of a common-law wife but had
also settled property interests in the payment of P40,000.

Best proof of marriage b/w man & wife is a marriage contract. A photostat copy of the marriage certificate
cannot be [accepted as a substitute] as this is a violation of the best evidence rule.

GR No. 70909, J anuary 5, 1994
Roberto Lim Chua, during his lifetime, lived out of wedlock with private respondent Florita A. Vallejo from
1970-1981. The couple had two illegitimate children, Roberto Rafson Alonzo and Rudyard Pride Alonzo, all
surnamed Chua. Roberto died intestate in Davao City on May 28, 1992. Vallejo filed on July 2, 1992 with
RTC-Cotabato a petition for declaration of guardianship of the two child and their properties worth
Antonietta Garcia Vda De Chua, the petitioner, filed a motion alleging that she was the true wife of
Roberto. However, according to Vallejo, she is not the surviving spouse of the latter but a pretender to the
estate since the deceased never contracted marriage with any woman and died a bachelor.

ISSUE: Whether petitioner is indeed the true wife of Roberto Chua.

The court ruled that petitioner was not able to prove her status as wife of the decedent. She could not
produce the original copy or authenticated copy of their marriage certificate. Furthermore, a certification from
the Local Civil Registrar was presented that no such marriage contract between petitioner and Roberto Chua
was ever registered with them, attested by Judge Augusto Banzali, the alleged person to have solemnized the
alleged marriage, that he has not solemnized such alleged marriage.
Hence, it is clear that petitioner failed to establish the truth of her allegation that she was the lawful wife of
the decedent. The best evidence is a valid marriage contract which she failed to produce.


The certification of due search & inability to find issued by the civil registrar enjoys probative value, he being
the officer charged under the law to keep a record of all data relative to the issuance of a marriage license. A
certicate of due search & inability to find can sufficiently prove that a marriage license is not issued.

GR No. 103047, September 12, 1994
Angelina Castro, with her parents unaware, contracted a civil marriage with Edwin Cardenas. They did
not immediately live together and it was only upon Castro found out that she was pregnant that they decided
to live together wherein the said cohabitation lasted for only 4 months. Thereafter, they parted ways and
Castro gave birth that was adopted by her brother with the consent of Cardenas.
The baby was brought in the US and in Castros earnest desire to follow her daughter wanted to put in
order her marital status before leaving for US. She filed a petition seeking a declaration for the nullity of her
marriage. Her lawyer then found out that there was no marriage license issued prior to the celebration of their
marriage proven by the certification issued by the Civil Registrar of Pasig.

ISSUE: Whether or not the documentary and testimonial evidence resorted to by Castro is sufficient to
establish that no marriage license was issued to the parties prior to the solemnization of their marriage.

The court affirmed the decision of CA that the certification issued by the Civil Registrar unaccompanied
by any circumstances of suspicion sufficiently prove that the office did not issue a marriage license to the
contracting parties. Albeit the fact that the testimony of Castro is not supported by any other witnesses is not
a ground to deny her petition because of the peculiar circumstances of her case. Furthermore, Cardenas was
duly served with notice of the proceedings, which he chose to ignore.
Under the circumstances of the case, the documentary and testimonial evidence presented by private
respondent Castro sufficiently established the absence of the subject marriage license.


In mixed marriages involving a Filipino & a foreigner, Art. 26 of the FC allows the former to contract a
subsequent marriage in case the divorce is validly obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating him or
her to remarry. A divorce obtained abroad by a couple, who are both aliens, may be recognized in the Phils.,
provided it is consistent w/ their respective natl laws. Therefore, before a foreign divorce decree can be
recognized by our courts, the party pleading it must prove the divorce as a fact & demonstrate its conformityto
the foreign law allowing it. Presentation solely of the divorce decree is insufficient.

GR NO. 138322, Oct. 2, 2002 | 366 SCRA 437
Rederick A. Recio, a Filipino, was married to Editha Samson, an Australian Citizen, in Malabon, Rizal on
March 1, 1987. They lived as husband and wife in Australia. However, an Australian family court issued
purportedly a decree of divorce, dissolving the marriage of Rederick and Editha on May 18, 1989.
On January 12, 1994, Rederick married Grace J. Garcia where it was solemnized at Our lady of Perpetual
Help Church, Cabanatuan City. Since October 22, 1995, the couple lived separately without prior judicial
dissolution of their marriage. As a matter of fact, while they were still in Australia, their conjugal assets were
divided on May 16, 1996, in accordance with their Statutory Declarations secured in Australia.
Grace filed a Complaint for Declaration of Nullity of Marriage on the ground of bigamy on March 3, 1998,
claiming that she learned only in November 1997, Redericks marriage with Editha Samson.

ISSUE: Whether the decree of divorce submitted by Rederick Recio is admissible as evidence to prove his
legal capacity to marry petitioner and absolved him of bigamy.

The nullity of Redericks marriage with Editha as shown by the divorce decree issued was valid and
recognized in the Philippines since the respondent is a naturalized Australian. However, there is absolutely
no evidence that proves respondents legal capacity to marry petitioner though the former presented a divorce
decree. The said decree, being a foreign document was inadmissible to court as evidence primarily because
it was not authenticated by the consul/ embassy of the country where it will be used.
Under Sections 24 and 25 of Rule 132, a writing or document may be proven as a public or official record
of a foreign country by either:
(1) an official publication or
(2) a copy thereof attested by the officer having legal custody of the document. If the record is not kept in the
Philippines, such copy must be:
(a) accompanied by a certificate issued by the proper diplomatic or consular officer in the Philippine foreign
service stationed in the foreign country in which the record is kept and
(b) authenticated by the seal of his office.
Thus, the Supreme Court remands the case to the Regional Trial Court of Cabanatuan City to receive or
trial evidence that will conclusively prove respondents legal capacity to marry petitioner and thus free him on
the ground of bigamy.

Marriage in the federal republic of germany between a filipina and a german, recognized in the philippines.
in the present case, the fact that private respondent obtained a valid divorce in his country, the federal
republic of germany, is admitted. Said divorce and its legal effects may be recognized in the philippines
insofar as private respondent is concerned in view of the nationality principle in our civil law on the matter of
status of persons.

GR No. 80116, June 30, 1989
Imelda M. Pilapil, a Filipino citizen, was married with private respondent, Erich Ekkehard Geiling, a German
national before the Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths at Friedensweiler, Federal Republic of
Germany. They have a child who was born on April 20, 1980 and named Isabella Pilapil Geiling. Conjugal
disharmony eventuated in private respondent and he initiated a divorce proceeding against petitioner in
Germany before the Schoneberg Local Court in January 1983. The petitioner then filed an action for legal
separation, support and separation of property before the RTC Manila on January 23, 1983.
The decree of divorce was promulgated on January 15, 1986 on the ground of failure of marriage of the
spouses. The custody of the child was granted to the petitioner.
On June 27, 1986, private respondent filed 2 complaints for adultery before the City Fiscal of Manila alleging
that while still married to Imelda, latter had an affair with William Chia as early as 1982 and another man
named Jesus Chua sometime in 1983.

ISSUE: Whether private respondent can prosecute petitioner on the ground of adultery even though they are
no longer husband and wife as decree of divorce was already issued.
The law specifically provided that in prosecution for adultery and concubinage, the person who can legally
file the complaint should be the offended spouse and nobody else. Though in this case, it appeared that
private respondent is the offended spouse, the latter obtained a valid divorce in his country, the Federal
Republic of Germany, and said divorce and its legal effects may be recognized in the Philippines in so far as
he is concerned. Thus, under the same consideration and rationale, private respondent is no longer the
husband of petitioner and has no legal standing to commence the adultery case under the imposture that he
was the offended spouse at the time he filed suit.

It is true that owing to the nationality principle embodied in Art. 15 of the CC, only Phil. nationals are covered
by the policy against absolute divorces the same being considered contrary to our concept of public policy &
morality. However, aliens may obtain divorces abroad, w/c may be recognized in the Phils., provided they are
valid accdg. to their natl law.
The purpose & effect of a decree of divorce from the bond of matrimony by a court of competent jurisdiction
are to change the existing status or domestic relation of husband & wife, & to free them both from the bond.
The marriage tie, when thus severed as to one party, ceases to bind either. A husband w/o a wife, or a wife
w/o a husband, is unknown to the law.

G.R. No. L-68470 October 8, 1985
Petitioner Alice Reyes is a citizen of the Philippines while private respondent is a citizen of the United
States; they were married in Hongkong. Thereafter, they established their residence in the Philippines and
begot two children. Subsequently, they were divorced in Nevada, United States, and that petitioner has re-
married also in Nevada, this time to Theodore Van Dorn.
Private respondent filed suit against petitioner, stating that petitioners business in Manila is their conjugal
property; that petitioner he ordered to render accounting of the business and that private respondent be
declared to manage the conjugal property. Petitioner moved to dismiss the case contending that the cause of
action is barred by the judgment in the divorce proceedings before the Nevada Court. The denial now is the
subject of the certiorari proceeding.

ISSUE: Whether or not the divorce obtained by the parties is binding only to the alien spouse.

It is true that owing to the nationality principle embodied in Article 15 of the Civil Code, only Philippine
nationals are covered by the policy against absolute divorces the same being considered contrary to our
concept of public policy and morality. However, aliens may obtain divorces abroad, which may be recognized
in the Philippines, provided they are valid according to their national law. In this case, the divorce in Nevada
released private respondent from the marriage from the standards of American Law, under which divorce
dissolves the marriage.
Thus, pursuant to his national law, private respondent is no longer the husband petitioner. He would have
no standing to sue in the case below as petitioners husband entitled to exercise control over conjugal assets.
As he is bound by the decision of his own countrys court, which validly exercised jurisdiction over him, and
whose decision he does not repudiate, he is stopped by his own representation before said court from
asserting his right over the alleged conjugal property.

Par. 2 of Art. 26 should be interpreted to include cases involving parties who, at the time of the celebration of
the marriage were Filipino citizens, but later on, one of them becomes naturalized as a foreign citizen &
obtains a divorce decree. The Filipino spouse should likewise be allowed to remarry as if the other party were
a foreigner at the time of the solemnization of the marriage.

GR NO. 154380, October 5, 2005
Cipriano Orbecido III was married with Lady Myros Villanueva on May 24, 1981 at the United Church of
Christ in the Philippines in Ozamis City. They had a son and a daughter named Kristoffer and Kimberly,
respectively. In 1986, the wife left for US bringing along their son Kristoffer. A few years later, Orbecido
discovered that his wife had been naturalized as an American citizen and learned from his son that his wife
sometime in 2000 had obtained a divorce decree and married a certain Stanley. He thereafter filed with the
trial court a petition for authority to remarry invoking Paragraph 2 of Article 26 of the Family Code.

ISSUE: Whether or not Orbecido can remarry under Article 26 of the Family Code.

The court ruled that taking into consideration the legislative intent and applying the rule of reason, Article
26 Par.2 should be interpreted to include cases involving parties who, at the time of the celebration of the
marriage were Filipino citizens, but later on, one of them becomes naturalized as a foreign citizen and obtains
a divorce decree. The Filipino spouse should likewise be allowed to remarry as if the other party were a
foreigner at the time of the solemnization of the marriage.
Hence, the courts unanimous decision in holding Article 26 Par 2 be interpreted as allowing a Filipino
citizen who has been divorced by a spouse who had acquired a citizenship and remarried, also to remarry
under Philippine law.


ART. 34: [The] 5 year[s] should be computed on the basis of a cohabitation as husband & wife where the
only missing factor is the special contract of marriage to validate the union. 5-year common-law cohabitation
period, w/c is counted back from the date of celebration of marriage, should be a period of legal union had it
not been for the absence of the marriage. This 5-year period should be the yrs immediately before the day of
the marriage & it should be a period of cohabitation characterized by exclusivity meaning no third party was
involved at any time w/in the 5 yrs & continuity that is unbroken.
ART. 35: Void marriages can be questioned even after the death of either party but voidable marriages can
be assailed only during the lifetime of the parties & not after the death of either, in w/c case the parties & their
offspring will be left as if the marriage had been perfectly valid. That is why the action or defense for nullity is
imprescriptible, unlike voidable marriages where the action prescribes. Only the parties to a voidable marriage
can assail it but any proper interested party may attack a void marriage.
ART. 40: A void marriage does not require a judicial decree to restore the parties to their original rights or to
make the marriage void but thru no sentence of avoidance be absolutely necessary, yet as well for the sake
of good order of society as for the peace of mind of all concerned, it is expedient that the nullity of the
marriage should be ascertained & declared by the decree of a court of competent jurisdiction.

G.R. No. 160172 February 13, 2008
Pepito Ninal was married with Teodulfa Bellones on September 26, 1974. They had 3 children namely
Babyline, Ingrid and Archie, petitioners. Due to the shot inflicted by Pepito to Teodulfa, the latter died on April
24, 1985 leaving the children under the guardianship of Engrace Ninal. 1 year and 8 months later, Pepito and
Norma Badayog got married without any marriage license. They instituted an affidavit stating that they had
lived together for at least 5 years exempting from securing the marriage license. Pepito died in a car accident
on February 19, 1977. After his death, petitioners filed a petition for declaration of nullity of the marriage of
Pepito and Norma alleging that said marriage was void for lack of marriage license.

1. Whether or not the second marriage of Pepito was void?
2. Whether or not the heirs of the deceased may file for the declaration of the nullity of Pepitos marriage after
his death?

The marriage of Pepito and Norma is void for absence of the marriage license. They cannot be
exempted even though they instituted an affidavit and claimed that they cohabit for at least 5 years because
from the time of Pepitos first marriage was dissolved to the time of his marriage with Norma, only about 20
months had elapsed. Albeit, Pepito and his first wife had separated in fact, and thereafter both Pepito and
Norma had started living with each other that has already lasted for five years, the fact remains that their five-
year period cohabitation was not the cohabitation contemplated by law. Hence, his marriage to Norma is still
Void marriages are deemed to have not taken place and cannot be the source of rights. It can be
questioned even after the death of one of the parties and any proper interested party may attack a void

For [the] provision on marital cohabition (art. 34) to apply, the ff requisites must concur:
1) The man & woman must have been living together as husband & wife for at least 5 yrs before the marriage;
2) The parties must have no legal impediment to marry each other;
3) The fact of absence of legal impediment b/w the parties must be present at the time of marriage;
4) The parties must execute an affidavit stating that they have lived toether for 5 yrs & are w/o legal
impediment to marry each other; &
5) The solemnizing officer must execute a sworn statement that he had ascertained the qualifications of the
parties & that he had found no legal impediment to their marriage.
Legal separation does not dissolve the marriage tie, much less authorize the parties to remarry. This holds
true all the more when the separation is merely de facto. Free & voluntary cohabitation w/ another person for
at least 5 yrs does not sever the tie of a subsisting previous marriage. Martial cohabitation for a long period of
time b/w 2 individuals who are legally capacitated to marry each other is merely a ground for exemption from
marriage license.

AM No. MTJ -001329, March 8, 2001
Herminia Borja-Manzano was the lawful wife of the late David Manzano having been married on May 21,
1966 in San Gabriel Archangel Parish in Caloocan. They had four children. On March 22, 1993, her husband
contracted another marriage with Luzviminda Payao before respondent Judge. The marriage contract clearly
stated that both contracting parties were separated thus, respondent Judge ought to know that the marriage
was void and bigamous. He claims that when he officiated the marriage of David and Payao, he knew that
the two had been living together as husband and wife for seven years as manifested in their joint affidavit that
they both left their families and had never cohabit or communicated with their spouses due to constant

ISSUE: Whether the solemnization of a marriage between two contracting parties who both have an existing
marriage can contract marriage if they have been cohabitating for 5 years under Article 34 of Family Code.

Among the requisites of Article 34 is that parties must have no legal impediment to marry each
other. Considering that both parties has a subsisting marriage, as indicated in their marriage contract that
they are both separated is an impediment that would make their subsequent marriage null and void. Just
like separation, free and voluntary cohabitation with another person for at least 5 years does not sever the tie
of a subsisting previous marriage. Clearly, respondent Judge Sanchez demonstrated gross ignorance of the
law when he solemnized a void and bigamous marriage.


The laws presume that a man & a woman, deporting themselves as husband & wife, have entered into a
lawful contract of marriage; that a child born in lawful wedlock, there being no divorce, absolute or from bed &
board is legit. Persons dwelling together in apparent matrimony are presumed, in the absence of any counter-
presumption or evidence special to that case, to be in fact married. Once a man & a woman have lived as
husband & wife & such relationship is not denied nor contradicted, the presumption of their being married
must be admitted as a fact.
GR NO. 57062, J anuary 24, 1992
Lupo Mariategui died without a will on June 26, 1953 and contracted 3 marriages during his lifetime. He
acquired the Muntinlupa Estate while he was still a bachelor. He had 4 children with his first wife Eusebia
Montellano, who died in 1904 namely Baldomera, Maria del Rosario, Urbano and Ireneo. Baldomera had 7
children namely Antero, Rufina, Catalino, Maria, Gerardo, Virginia and Federico, all surnamed Espina. Ireneo
on the other hand had a son named Ruperto. On the other hand, Lupos second wife is Flaviana Montellano
where they had a daughter named Cresenciana. Lupo got married for the third time in 1930 with Felipa
Velasco and had 3 children namely Jacinto, Julian and Paulina. Jacinto testified that his parents got married
before a Justice of the Peace of Taguig Rizal. The spouses deported themselves as husband and wife, and
were known in the community to be such.
Lupos descendants by his first and second marriages executed a deed of extrajudicial partition whereby
they adjudicated themselves Lot NO. 163 of the Muntinlupa Estate and was subjected to a voluntary
registration proceedings and a decree ordering the registration of the lot was issued. The siblings in the third
marriage prayed for inclusion in the partition of the estate of their deceased father and annulment of the deed
of extrajudicial partition dated Dec. 1967.

ISSUE: Whether the marriage of Lupo with Felipa is valid in the absence of a marriage license.

Although no marriage certificate was introduced to prove Lupo and Felipas marriage, no evidence was
likewise offered to controvert these facts. Moreover, the mere fact that no record of the marriage exists does
not invalidate the marriage, provided all requisites for its validity are present.
Under these circumstances, a marriage may be presumed to have taken place between Lupo and Felipa.
The laws presume that a man and a woman, deporting themselves as husband and wife, have entered into a
lawful contract of marriage; that a child born in lawful wedlock, there being no divorce, absolute or from bed
and board is legitimate; and that things have happened according to the ordinary course of nature and the
ordinary habits of life.
Hence, Felipas children are legitimate and therefore have successional rights.

For the exception in [art. 34] to apply, it is a sine qua non thereto that the man & the woman must have
attained the age of majority, & that, being unmarried, they have lived together as husband & wife for at least 5

GR No. 175581, March 28, 2008
Jose and Felisa Dayot were married at the Pasay City Hall on November 24, 1986. In lieu of a marriage
license, they executed a sworn affidavit that they had lived together for at least 5years. On August 1990,
Jose contracted marriage with a certain Rufina Pascual. They were both employees of the National Statistics
and Coordinating Board. Felisa then filed on June 1993 an action for bigamy against Jose and an
administrative complaint with the Office of the Ombudsman. On the other hand, Jose filed a complaint on
July 1993 for annulment and/or declaration of nullity of marriage where he contended that his marriage with
Felisa was a sham and his consent was secured through fraud.

ISSUE: Whether or not Joses marriage with Felisa is valid considering that they executed a sworn affidavit in
lieu of the marriage license requirement.

CA indubitably established that Jose and Felisa have not lived together for 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.
The solemnization of a marriage without prior license is a clear violation of the law and invalidates a
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. Hence, Jose and Felisas marriage is void
ab initio. The court also ruled that an action for nullity of marriage is imprescriptible. The right to impugn
marriage does not prescribe and may be raised any time.



[Pursuant to the FC], a declaration of the absolute nullity of a marriage is now explicitly required either as a
cause of action or a ground for defense. Where the absolute nullity of a previouse marriage is sought to be
invoked for purposes of contracting a 2
marriage, the sole basis acceptable in law for said projected
marriage to be free from legal infirmity is a fuinal judgment declaring the previous marriage void. Parties to a
marriage should not be allowed to assume that their marriage is void even if such be the fact but must 1

secure a judicial declaration of the nullity of their marriage before they can be allowed to marry again.
Art. 40 denotes that such final judgment declaring the previous marriage void need not be obtained only for
purposes of remarriage. Undoubtedly, one can conceive of other instances where a party might well invoke
the absolute nullity of a previous marriage for purposes other than remarriage, in such cases, evidence needs
must be adduced, testimonial or documentary, to prove the existence of grounds rendering such a previous
marriage an absolute nullity. This need not be limited solely to an earlier final judgment of a court declaring
such previous marriage void.

G.R. No. 104818 September 17, 1993
Soledad Domingo, married with Roberto Domingo in 1976, filed a petition for the declaration of nullity of
marriage and separation of property. She did not know that Domingo had been previously married to
Emerlinda dela Paz in 1969. She came to know the previous marriage when the latter filed a suit of bigamy
against her. Furthermore, when she came home from Saudi during her one-month leave from work, she
discovered that Roberto cohabited with another woman and had been disposing some of her properties which
is administered by Roberto. The latter claims that because their marriage was void ab initio, the declaration
of such voidance is unnecessary and superfluous. On the other hand, Soledad insists the declaration of the
nullity of marriage not for the purpose of remarriage, but in order to provide a basis for the separation and
distribution of properties acquired during the marriage.

ISSUE: Whether or not a petition for judicial declaration should only be filed for purposes of remarriage.

The declaration of the nullity of marriage is indeed required for purpose of remarriage. However, it is also
necessary for the protection of the subsequent spouse who believed in good faith that his or her partner was
not lawfully married marries the same. With this, the said person is freed from being charged with bigamy.
When a marriage is declared void ab initio, law states that final judgment shall provide for the liquidation,
partition and distribution of the properties of the spouses, the custody and support of the common children
and the delivery of their presumptive legitimes, unless such matters had been adjudicated in previous judicial
proceedings. Soledads prayer for separation of property will simply be the necessary consequence of the
judicial declaration of absolute nullity of their marriage. Hence, the petitioners suggestion that for their
properties be separated, an ordinary civil action has to be instituted for that purpose is baseless. The Family
Code has clearly provided the effects of the declaration of nullity of marriage, one of which is the separation of
property according to the regime of property relations governing them.



Psychological incapacity should refer to no less than a mental (not physical) incapacity. The psychological
incapacity must be characterized by (a) gravity, (b) juridical antecedence, & (c) incurability.
[Difficulty, if not outright refusal or neglect in the performance of some marital obligations does not
constitute psychological incapacity.] Mere showing of irreconcilable differences & conflicting personalities
in no wise constitutes psychological incapacity. Failure of expectation is not indicative of antecedent
psychological incapacity.
1. Burden of proof upon petitioner
2. Root cause of the psychological incapacity must be: a) medically or clinically identified, (b) alleged in
the complaint, (c) sufficiently proven by experts & (d) clearly explained in the decision.
3. Psychological incapacity must be proven to be existing at the time of the celebration of the
marriage. The manifestation need not be perceivable at such time, but the illness itself must have attached at
such moment, or prior thereto.
4. Psychological incapacity must also be shown to be medically or clinically permanent or incurable. Such
incurability may be absolute or even relative in regard to the other spouse, not necessarily absolutely
against everyone of the same sex. Such incapacity must be relevant to the assumption of marriage
5. Such illness must be grave enough to bring about the disability of the party to assume the essential
obligations of marriage. The illness must be shown as downright incapacity or inability, not a refusal,
neglect or difficulty, much less ill will.
6. Essential marital obligations are those embraced in Arts 68-71 & Arts 220,221, 225 (w/ regards to parents &
7. Interpretations in Natl Appellate Matrimontial Tribunal of Catholic Church though not binding are persuasive.

G.R. No. 108763 February 13, 1997
The case at bar challenges the decision of CA affirming the marriage of the respondent Roridel Molina to
Reynaldo Molina void in the ground of psychological incapacity. The couple got married in 1985, after a year,
Reynaldo manifested signs of immaturity and irresponsibility both as husband and a father preferring to spend
more time with friends whom he squandered his money, depends on his parents for aid and assistance and was
never honest with his wife in regard to their finances. In 1986, the couple had an intense quarrel and as a result
their relationship was estranged. Roridel quit her work and went to live with her parents in Baguio City in 1987
and a few weeks later, Reynaldo left her and their child. Since then he abandoned them.

ISSUE: Whether or not the marriage is void on the ground of psychological incapacity.
The marriage between Roridel and Reynaldo subsists and remains valid. What constitutes psychological
incapacity is not mere showing of irreconcilable differences and confliction personalities. It is indispensable that
the parties must exhibit inclinations which would not meet the essential marital responsibilites and duties due to
some psychological illness. Reynaldos action at the time of the marriage did not manifest such characteristics
that would comprise grounds for psychological incapacity. The evidence shown by Roridel merely showed that
she and her husband cannot get along with each other and had not shown gravity of the problem neither its
juridical antecedence nor its incurability. In addition, the expert testimony by Dr Sison showed no incurable
psychiatric disorder but only incompatibility which is not considered as psychological incapacity.
The following are the guidelines as to the grounds of psychological incapacity laid set forth in this case:
burden of proof to show nullity belongs to the plaintiff
root causes of the incapacity must be medically and clinically inclined
such incapacity should be in existence at the time of the marriage
such incapacity must be grave so as to disable the person in complying with the essentials of marital
obligations of marriage
such incapacity must be embraced in Art. 68-71 as well as Art 220, 221 and 225 of the Family Code
decision of the National Matrimonial Appellate Court or the Catholic Church must be respected
court shall order the prosecuting attorney and the fiscal assigned to it to act on behalf of the state.
Annulment based on psychological incapacity; mere failure to return home for more than five (5) years, not
sufficient to establish psychological incapacity.

GR No. 112019, J anuary 4, 1995
Leouel, a First Lieutenant in the Philippine Army, met Julia in Iloilo. The two got married in 1986 before a
municipal trial court followed shortly thereafter, by a church wedding. The couple lived with Julias parents at the
J. Bedia Compound. Julia gave birth to a baby boy in 1987 and was named as Leouel Santos Jr. Occasionally,
the couple will quarrel over a number of things aside from the interference of Julias parents into their family
Julia left in 1988 to work in US as a nurse despite Leouels pleas to dissuade her. Seven months after her
departure, she called her husband and promised to return home upon the expiration of her contract in July 1989
but she never did. Leouel got a chance to visit US where he underwent a training program under AFP, he
desperately tried to locate or somehow get in touch with Julia but all his efforts were of no avail.
Leouel filed a complaint to have their marriage declared void under Article 36 of the Family Code. He argued
that failure of Julia to return home or to communicate with him for more than 5 years are circumstances that show
her being psychologically incapacitated to enter into married life.

ISSUE: Whether their marriage can be considered void under Article 36 of the Family Code.

The intendment of the law has been to confine the meaning of psychological incapacity to the most serious
cases of personal disorders clearly demonstrative of an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and
significance to the marriage. This condition must exist at the time the marriage is celebrated.

Undeniably and understandably, Leouel stands aggrieved, even desperate, in his present situation. Regrettably,
neither law nor society itself can always provide all the specific answers to every individual problem. Wherefore,
his petition was denied.

In proving psychological incapacity, we find no distinction b/w an alien spouse & a Filipino spouse. The
medical & clinical rules to determine psychological incapacity were formulated on the basis of studies of
human behavior in general. Hence, the norms used for determining psychological incapacity should apply to
any person regardless of nationality.

GR No. 149498, May 20, 2004
Lolita Quintero-Hamano filed a complaint in 1996 for declaration of nullity of her marriage with Toshio
Hamano, a Japanese national, on the ground of psychological incapacity. She and Toshio started a common-
law relationship in Japan and lived in the Philippines for a month. Thereafter, Toshio went back to Japan and
stayed there for half of 1987. Lolita then gave birth on November 16, 1987.
In 1988, Lolita and Toshio got married in MTC-Bacoor, Cavite. After a month of their marriage, Toshio
returned to Japan and promised to return by Christmas to celebrate the holidays with his family. Toshio sent
money for two months and after that he stopped giving financial support. She wrote him several times but
never respondent. In 1991, she learned from her friend that Toshio visited the country but did not bother to
see her nor their child.
Toshio was no longer residing at his given address thus summons issued to him remained
unserved. Consequently, in 1996, Lolita filed an ex parte motion for leave to effect service of summons by
publication. The motion was granted and the summons, accompanied by a copy of the petition, was
published in a newspaper of general circulation giving Toshio 15 days to file his answer. Toshio filed to
respond after the lapse of 60 days from publication, thus, Lolita filed a motion to refer the case to the
prosecutor for investigation.

ISSUE: Whether Toshio was psychologically incapacitated to perform his marital obligation.

The Court is mindful of the 1987 Constitution to protect and strengthen the family as basic autonomous
social institution and marriage as the foundation of the family. Thus, any doubt should be resolved in favor of
the validity of the marriage.
Toshios act of abandonment was doubtlessly irresponsible but it was never alleged nor proven to be due
to some kind of psychological illness. Although as rule, actual medical examinations are not needed, it would
have greatly helped Lolita had she presented evidence that medically or clinically identified Toshios
illness. This could have been done through an expert witness. It is essential that a person show incapability
of doing marital obligation due to some psychological, not physical illness. Hence, Toshio was not considered
as psychologically incapacitated.

It is the height of absurdity & inequity to condemn [a person] psychologically incapacitated to fulfill [his] marital
obligations, simply b/c [he] filed cases against [his spouse]. [Lack of attention to children, immaturity & lack of
an intention of procreative sexuality does not constitute psychological incapacity.] A medical examination is
not a condition sine qua non to a finding of psychological incapacity, so long as the totality of evidence
presented is enough to establish the incapacity adequately.

GR No. 1473376, November 26, 2002
Leni Choa and Alfonso Choa got married in 1981. They have 2 children namely Cheryl Lynne and
Albryan. In 1993, Alfonso filed an annulment of his marriage to Leni. Afterwards, he filed an amended
complaint for the declaration of nullity of their marriage based on psychological incapacity. The case went to
trial and the trial court further held that Alfonso presented quantum evidence that Leni needs to controvert for
the dismissal of the case.
Alfonso claimed that Leni charged him with perjury, concubinage and deportation which shows latters
psychological incapacity because according to him it clearly showed that his wife not only wanted him behind
bars but also to banish outside the country.

ISSUE: Whether or not Alfonso Chua presented quantum evidence for the declaration of nullity of his
marriage with Leni on the ground of psychological incapacity.

The court held that documents presented by Alfonso during the trial of the case do not in any way show
the alleged psychological incapacity of his wife. The evidence was insufficient and shows grave abuse of
discretion bordering on absurdity. Alfonso testified and complained about three aspects of Lenis personality
namely lack of attention to children, immaturity, and lack of an intention of procreative sexuality and none of
these three, singly or collectively, constitutes psychological incapacity.
Psychological incapacity must be characterized by gravity, juridical antecedence, and incurability. It must
be more than just a difficulty, a refusal or a neglect in the performance of marital obligations. A mere showing
of irreconcilable differences and conflicting personalities does not constitute psychological incapacity.
Furthermore, the testimonial evidence from other witnesses failed to identify and prove root cause of the
alleged psychological incapacity. It just established that the spouses had an incompatibility or a defect that
could possibly be treated or alleviated through psychotherapy. The totality of evidence presented was
completely insufficient to sustain a finding of psychological incapacity more so without any medical,
psychiatric or psychological examination.

Such abnormal reluctance or unwillingness to consummate his marriage is strongly indicative of a serious
personality disorder w/c clearly demonstrates an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning & significance
to the marriage w/in the meaning of Art. 36 of the FC. Evidently, one of the essential marital obligations under
the FC is to procreate children based on the unviersal principle that procreation of children thru sexual
cooperation is the basic end of marriage. Constant non-fulfillment of this obligation will finally destroy the
integrity or wholeness of marriage. The senseless & protracted refusal of one of the parties to fulfill the above
martial obligation is equivalent to psychological incapacity.

GR No. 119190, J anuary 16, 1997
Chi Ming Tsoi and Gina Lao Tsoi was married in 1988. After the celebration of their wedding, they
proceed to the house of defendants mother. There was no sexual intercourse between them during their first
night and same thing happened until their fourth night. In an effort to have their honeymoon in a private
place, they went to Baguio but Ginas relatives went with them. Again, there was no sexual intercourse since
the defendant avoided by taking a long walk during siesta or sleeping on a rocking chair at the living
room. Since May 1988 until March 1989 they slept together in the same bed but no attempt of sexual
intercourse between them. Because of this, they submitted themselves for medical examination to a urologist
in Chinese General Hospital in 1989. The result of the physical examination of Gina was disclosed, while that
of the husband was kept confidential even the medicine prescribed. There were allegations that the reason
why Chi Ming Tsoi married her is to maintain his residency status here in the country. Gina does not want to
reconcile with Chi Ming Tsoi and want their marriage declared void on the ground of psychological
incapacity. On the other hand, the latter does not want to have their marriage annulled because he loves her
very much, he has no defect on his part and is physically and psychologically capable and since their
relationship is still young, they can still overcome their differences. Chi Ming Tsoi submitted himself to
another physical examination and the result was there is not evidence of impotency and he is capable of

ISSUE: Whether Chi Ming Tsois refusal to have sexual intercourse with his wife constitutes psychological

The abnormal reluctance or unwillingness to consummate his marriage is strongly indicative of a serious
personality disorder which to the mind of the Supreme Court clearly demonstrates an utter insensitivity or
inability to give meaning and significance tot the marriage within the meaning of Article 36 of the Family Code.
If a spouse, although physically capable but simply refuses to perform his or her essential marital
obligations and the refusal is senseless and constant, Catholic marriage tribunals attribute the causes to
psychological incapacity than to stubborn refusal. Furthermore, one of the essential marital obligations under
the Family Code is to procreate children thus constant non-fulfillment of this obligation will finally destroy the
integrity and wholeness of the marriage.

Courts should interpret [Art. 36] on a case-to-case basis; guided by experience, the findings of expers &
researchers in psychological disciplines, & by decisions of church tribunals. By the very nature of Art. 36,
courts, despite having the primary task & burden of decision-making, must not discount but, instead, must
consider as decisive evidence on the expert opinion on the psychological & mental temperaments of the
parties. [This case is proof that there are people who are psychologically incapacitated to be married to each
other but not w/ everyone else. In this case, a male diagnosed w/ dependent personality disorder is
incompatible w/ a female diagnosed w/ antisocial personality disorder.]

GR No. 161793, February 13, 2009
Petitioner Edward Te first met respondent Rowena Te in a gathering organized by the Filipino-Chinese
association in their college. Initially, he was attracted to Rowenas close friend but, as the latter already had a
boyfriend, the young man decided to court Rowena, which happened in January 1996. It was Rowena who
asked that they elope but Edward refused bickering that he was young and jobless. Her persistence,
however, made him relent. They left Manila and sailed to Cebu that month; he, providing their travel money
of P80,000 and she, purchasing the boat ticket.
They decided to go back to Manila in April 1996. Rowena proceeded to her uncles house and Edward to
his parents home. Eventually they got married but without a marriage license. Edward was prohibited from
getting out of the house unaccompanied and was threatened by Rowena and her uncle. After a month,
Edward escaped from the house, and stayed with his parents. Edwards parents wanted them to stay at their
house but Rowena refused and demanded that they have a separate abode. In June 1996, she said that it
was better for them to live separate lives and they then parted ways.

After four years in January 2000, Edward filed a petition for the annulment of his marriage to Rowena on the
basis of the latters psychological incapacity.

ISSUE: Whether the marriage contracted is void on the ground of psychological incapacity.

The parties whirlwind relationship lasted more or less six months. They met in January 1996, eloped in
March, exchanged marital vows in May, and parted ways in June. The psychologist who provided expert
testimony found both parties psychologically incapacitated. Petitioners behavioral pattern falls under the
classification of dependent personality disorder, and respondents, that of the narcissistic and antisocial
personality disorder
There is no requirement that the person to be declared psychologically incapacitated be personally
examined by a physician, if the totality of evidence presented is enough to sustain a finding of psychological
incapacity. Verily, the evidence must show a link, medical or the like, between the acts that manifest
psychological incapacity and the psychological disorder itself.
The presentation of expert proof presupposes a thorough and in-depth assessment of the parties by the
psychologist or expert, for a conclusive diagnosis of a grave, severe and incurable presence of psychological
Indeed, petitioner, afflicted with dependent personality disorder, cannot assume the essential marital
obligations of living together, observing love, respect and fidelity and rendering help and support, for he is
unable to make everyday decisions without advice from others, and allows others to make most of his
important decisions (such as where to live). As clearly shown in this case, petitioner followed everything
dictated to him by the persons around him. He is insecure, weak and gullible, has no sense of his identity as a
person, has no cohesive self to speak of, and has no goals and clear direction in life.
As for the respondent, her being afflicted with antisocial personality disorder makes her unable to assume
the essential marital obligations on account for her disregard in the rights of others, her abuse, mistreatment
and control of others without remorse, and her tendency to blame others. Moreover, as shown in this case,
respondent is impulsive and domineering; she had no qualms in manipulating petitioner with her threats of
blackmail and of committing suicide.
Both parties being afflicted with grave, severe and incurable psychological incapacity, the precipitous
marriage that they contracted on April 23, 1996 is thus, declared null and void.


A judicial declaration of absolute nullity of a marriage retroacts to the date of the wedding celebration.

GR No. 145226, February 6, 2004
Lucio Morigo and Lucia Barrete were boardmates in Bohol. They lost contacts for a while but after
receiving a card from Barrete and various exchanges of letters, they became sweethearts. They got married
in 1990. Barrete went back to Canada for work and in 1991 she filed petition for divorce in Ontario Canada,
which was granted. In 1992, Morigo married Lumbago. He subsequently filed a complaint for judicial
declaration of nullity on the ground that there was no marriage ceremony. Morigo was then charged with
bigamy and moved for a suspension of arraignment since the civil case pending posed a prejudicial question
in the bigamy case. Morigo pleaded not guilty claiming that his marriage with Barrete was void ab
initio. Petitioner contented he contracted second marriage in good faith.

ISSUE: Whether Morigo must have filed declaration for the nullity of his marriage with Barrete before his
second marriage in order to be free from the bigamy case.

Morigos marriage with Barrete is void ab initio considering that there was no actual marriage ceremony
performed between them by a solemnizing officer instead they just merely signed a marriage contract. The
petitioner does not need to file declaration of the nullity of his marriage when he contracted his second
marriage with Lumbago. Hence, he did not commit bigamy and is acquitted in the case filed.

A marriage though void still needs a judicial declaration of such fact & for all legal intents & purposes she
would still be regarded as a married woman [until she obtains such judicial declaration of absolute nullity of

G.R. No. L-53703 August 19, 1986
Karl Wiegel was married to Lilia Wiegel on July 1978. Lilia was married with a certain Eduardo Maxion in
1972. Karl then filed a petition in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court for the declaration of nullity of
his marriage with Lilia on the ground of latters former marriage. Having been allegedly force to enter into a
marital union, she contents that the first marriage is null and void. Lilia likewise alleged that Karl was married
to another woman before their marriage.

ISSUE: Whether Karls marriage with Lilia is void.

It was not necessary for Lilia to prove that her first marriage was vitiated with force because it will not be
void but merely voidable. Such marriage is valid until annulled. Since no annulment has yet been made, it is
clear that when she married Karl, she is still validly married to her first husband. Consequently, her marriage
to Karl is void. Likewise, there is no need of introducing evidence on the prior marriage of Karl for then such
marriage though void still needs a judicial declaration before he can remarry. Accordingly, Karl and Lilias
marriage are regarded void under the law.

For purposes of determining whether a person is legally free to contract a 2
marriage, a judicial declaration
that the 1
marriage was null & void ab initio is essential.

A.M. No. 2349 July 3, 1992
Dorothy Terre was then married to a certain Merlito Bercenillo, her first cousin. Atty. Jordan Terre
successfully convinced Dorothy that her marriage was void ab initio for the reason of public policy and that
they are free to contract marriage. They got married in 1977 where he wrote single under Dorothys
status. After getting Dorothy pregnant, Atty. Terre abandoned them and subsequently contracted another
marriage to Helina Malicdem in 1986. Atty. Terre was charged with abandonment of minor and bigamy.

ISSUE: Whether or not Atty. Terres marriage with Dorothy is null and void.

Dorothys first marriage is indeed void ab initio considering that Merlito is her first cousin thereby against
public policy. However, she did not file any declaration for the nullity of their marriage before she contracted
her marriage with Atty. Terre thus, her second marriage is void. Article 40 states that the absolute nullity of a
former marriage may be invoked for the purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment
declaring such previous marriage void.

The term "capacitated" in the first paragraph of Art. 147 refers to the legal capacity of a party to contract marriage,
i.e., any "male or female of the age of eighteen years or upwards not under any of the impediments mentioned in
Articles 37 and 38" of the Code.

G.R. No. 122749. July 31, 1996
Antonio Valdez and Consuelo Gomez were married in 1971 and begotten 5 children. Valdez filed a petition in
1992 for a declaration of nullity of their marriage pursuant to Article 36 of the Family Code, which was granted
hence, marriage is null and void on the ground of their mutual psychological incapacity. Stella and Joaquin are
placed under the custody of their mother while the other 3 siblings are free to choose which they prefer.
Gomez sought a clarification of that portion in the decision regarding the procedure for the liquidation of
common property in unions without marriage. During the hearing on the motion, the children filed a joint affidavit
expressing desire to stay with their father.

ISSUE: Whether or not the property regime should be based on co-ownership.

The Supreme Court ruled that in a void marriage, regardless of the cause thereof, the property relations of the
parties are governed by the rules on co-ownership. Any property acquired during the union is prima facie
presumed to have been obtained through their joint efforts. A party who did not participate in the acquisition of
the property shall be considered as having contributed thereto jointly if said partys efforts consisted in the care
and maintenance of the family.
Article 147 is a remake of Article 144 of the Civil Code as interpreted and so applied in previous cases. This
peculiar kind of co-ownership applies when a man and a woman, suffering no legal impediment to marry each
other, so exclusively live together as husband and wife under a void marriage or without the benefit of marriage.
The term "capacitated" in the first paragraph of Art. 147 refers to the legal capacity of a party to contract marriage,
i.e., any "male or female of the age of eighteen years or upwards not under any of the impediments mentioned in
Articles 37 and 38" of the Code. Under this property regime, property acquired by both spouses through their work
and industry shall be governed by the rules on equal co-ownership.
The first paragraph of Article 50 of the Family Code, applying paragraphs (2), (3), (4) and (5) of Article 43,
relates only, by its explicit terms, to voidable marriages and, exceptionally, to void marriages under Article 40 of
the Code, i.e., the declaration of nullity of a subsequent marriage contracted by a spouse of a prior void marriage
before the latter is judicially declared void. The latter is a special rule that somehow recognizes the philosophy
and an old doctrine that void marriages are inexistent from the very beginning and no judicial decree is necessary
to establish their nullity. In now requiring for purposes of remarriage, the declaration of nullity by final judgment of
the previously contracted void marriage, the present law aims to do away with any continuing uncertainty on the
status of the second marriage. It is not then illogical for the provisions of Article 43, in relation to Articles 41 and
42, of the Family Code, on the effects of the termination of a subsequent marriage contracted during the
subsistence of a previous marriage to be made applicable pro hac vice. In all other cases, it is not to be assumed
that the law has also meant to have coincident property relations, on the one hand, between spouses in valid and
voidable marriages (before annulment) and, on the other, between common-law spouses or spouses of void
marriages, leaving to ordain, in the latter case, the ordinary rules on co-ownership subject to the provision of
Article 147 and Article 148 of the Family Code. It must be stressed, nevertheless, even as it may merely state the
obvious, that the provisions of the Family Code on the "family home," i.e., the provisions found in Title V, Chapter
2, of the Family Code, remain in force and effect regardless of the property regime of the spouses.

A subsequent marriage contracted by any person during the lifetime of his first spouse is illegal and void from its
performance, and no judicial decree is necessary to establish its invalidity as dis tinguished from mere annuable

G.R. No. L-10016. February 28, 1957
Proceso Rosima contracted marriage with Gorrea. While his marriage with the latter subsist, he contracted a
canonical marriage with Faicol. Gorrea is staying in Cebu while Faicol is in Iloilo. He was a traveling salesman
thus, he commuted between Iloilo and Cebu. When Gorrea died, he brought Faicol to Cebu where the latter
worked as teacher-nurse. She later on suffered injuries in her eyes caused by physical maltreatment of Rosima
and was sent to Iloilo to undergo treatment. While she was in Iloilo, Rosima contracted a third marriage with
Maglasang. CFI-Cebu found him guilty of bigamy.

ISSUE: Whether or not the third marriage is null and void.

The action was instituted upon the complaint of the second wife whose marriage with Rosima was not
renewed after the death of the first wife and before the third marriage was entered into. Hence, the last marriage
was a valid one and prosecution against Rosima for contracting marriage cannot prosper.

A declaration of the absolute nullity of a marriage is now explicitly required either as a cause of action or a
ground for defense; in fact, the requirement for a declaration of absolute nullity of a marriage is also for the
protection of the spouse who, believing that his or her marriage is illegal & void, marries again.

G.R. No. 137110. August 1, 2000
Dr. Vicent Mercado was previously married with Thelma Oliva in 1976 before he contracted marriage with
Consuelo Tan in 1991 which the latter claims she did not know. Tan filed bigamy against Mercado and after a
month the latter filed an action for declaration of nullity of marriage against Oliva. The decision in 1993
declared marriage between Mercado and Oliva null and void.

ISSUE: Whether Mercado committed bigamy in spite of filing the declaration of nullity of the former marriage.

A judicial declaration of nullity of a previous marriage is necessary before a subsequent one can be
legally contracted. One who enters into a subsequent marriage without first obtaining such judicial
declaration is guilty of bigamy. This principle applies even if the earlier union is characterized by statute as
In the case at bar, Mercado only filed the declaration of nullity of his marriage with Oliva right after Tan
filed bigamy case. Hence, by then, the crime had already been consummated. He contracted second
marriage without the judicial declaration of the nullity. The fact that the first marriage is void from the
beginning is not a defense in a bigamy charge.


A person searching for his missing spouse must do so w/ such diligence as to give rise to a well-founded
belief that his spouse is dead.

G.R. No. 94053 March 17, 1993
Gregorio Nolasco is a seaman. He met Janet Parker, a British, in bar in England. After that, Janet
started living with Nolasco in his ship for six months. It lasted until the contract of Nolasco expired then he
brought her to his hometown in Antique. They got married in January 1982. Due to another contract,
Nolasco left the province. In 1983, Nolasco received a letter from his mother informing him that his son had
been born but 15 days after, Janet left. Nolasco went home and cut short his contract to find Janets
whereabouts. He did so by securing another seamans contract going to London. He wrote several letters to
the bar where they first met but it was all returned. Gregorio petitioned in 1988 for a declaration of
presumptive death of Janet.

ISSUE: Whether or not Nolasco had a well-founded belief that his wife, Janet, is already dead?

The Supreme Court ruled that Nolascos efforts to locate Janet were not persistent to show that he has a
well-founded belief that his wife was already dead because instead of seeking assistance of local authorities
and the British Embassy, he even secured another contract. More so, while he was in London, he did not
even try to solicit help of the authorities to find his wife.

Presumption of death, "juris tantum" only; cannot be subject of judicial pronouncement. The philosophy behind
this ruling is that "a judicial pronouncement to that effect, even if final and executory, would still be a prima facie
presumption only. It is still disputable. It is for that reason that it cannot be the subject of a judicial pronouncement
or declaration, if it is the only question or matter involved in a case, or upon which a competent court has to pass .
It is, therefore, clear that a judicial declaration that a person is presumptively dead, because he had been unheard
from in seven years, being a presumption juris tantum only, subject to contrary proof, cannot reach the stage of
finality or become final."

L-8492, February 29, 1956
Lourdes Lukban and Francisco Chuidian got married in 1933 and after a violent quarrel he left Lukban and
has not been heard of since then. She diligently looked for him asking the parents and friends but no one knew
his whereabouts. She believes that husband is already dead since he was absent for more than 20 years and
because she intends to marry again, she desires to have her civil status put in order to be relieved on any liability
under the law.

ISSUE: Whether Lukban needs to secure declaration of presumptive death before she can remarry.

The court ruled that Lukban does not need to secure declaration of presumptive death of her husband
because Civil Code prevails during their marriage in 1933. It provides that for the purposes of the civil marriage
law, it is not necessary to have the former spouse judicially declared an absentee. The declaration of absence
made in accordance with the provisions of the Civil Code has for its sole purpose to enable the taking of the
necessary precautions for the administration of the estate of the absentee. For the celebration of civil marriage,
however, the law only requires that the former spouse has been absent for seven consecutive years at the time of
the second marriage, that the spouse present does not know his or her former spouse to be living, that each
former spouse is generally reputed to be dead and the spouse present so believes at the time of the celebration
of the marriage.

Under the [FC], in order that a subsequent bigamous marriage may exceptionally be considered valid, the ff
conditions must concur: (a) the prior spouse of the contracting party must have been absent for 4 consecutive
yrs, or 2 yrs where there is danger of death under the circumstances stated in Art. 391
of the CC at the time
of disappearance; (b) the spouse present has a well-founded belief that the absent spouse is already dead; &
(c) there is, unlike the old rule, a judicial declaration of presumptive death of the absentee for w/c purpose the
spouse present can institute a summary proceeding in court to ask for that declaration.

GR No. 136467, April 6, 2000
Teodorico Calisterio, husband of Marietta Calisterio, the respondent, died intestate in April 1992 leaving
several parcel of land estimated value of P604,750.00. He was the second husband of Marietta who was
previously married with William Bounds in January 1946. The latter disappeared without a trace in February
1947. 11 years later from the disappearance of Bounds, Marietta and Teodorico were married in May 1958
without Marietta securing a court declaration of Bounds presumptive death.
Antonia Armas y Calisterio, surviving sister of Teodorico filed a petition claiming to be the sole surviving
heir of the latter and that marriage between Marietta and his brother being allegedly bigamous is thereby null
and void. She prayed that her son Sinfroniano be appointed as administrator, without bond, of the estate of
the deceased and inheritance be adjudicated to her after all the obligations of the estate would have been

Art. 391, CC. The ff shall be presumed dead for all purposes, including the division of the estate among the heirs:
(1) A person on board a vessel lost during a sea voyage, or an aeroplane w/c is missing, who has not been heard of for 4 yrs since the loss of the
vessel or aeroplane;
(2) A person in the armed forces who has taken part in war, & has been missing for 4 yrs;
(3) A person who has been in danger of death under other circumstances & his existence has not been known for 4 years.
ISSUE: Whether Marrieta and Teodoricos marriage was void due to the absence of the declaration of
presumptive death.

The marriage between the respondent and the deceased was solemnized in May 1958 where the law in
force at that time was the Civil Code and not the Family Code which only took effect in August 1988. Article
256 of the Family Code itself limit its retroactive governance only to cases where it thereby would not
prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights in accordance with the Civil Code or other laws. Since Civil
Code provides that declaration of presumptive death is not essential before contracting marriage where at
least 7 consecutive years of absence of the spouse is enough to remarry then Marrietas marriage with
Teodorico is valid and therefore she has a right can claim portion of the estate.

The belief of the present spouse must be the result of proper & honest to goodness inquiries & efforts to
ascertain the whereabouts of the absent spouse & whether the absent spouse is still alive or is already dead.
W/N the spouse present acted on a well-founded belief of death of the absent spouse depends upon the
inquiries to be drawn from a great many circumstances occurring before & after the disappearance of the
absent spouse & the nature & extent of the inquiries made by present spouse.

GR No. 159614, December 9, 2005
Alan Alegro, the petitioner, was married with Lea in January 1995. Lea arrived home late in February
1995 and Alan told her that if she enjoys life of a single person, it will be better for her to go back to her
parents. Lea left after that fight. Allan checked if she went to her parents house but was not there and even
inquired to her friends. He went back to the parents-in-laws house and learned that Lea had been to their
house but left without notice. He then sought help from the Barangay Captain. For sometime, Alan decided to
work as part-time taxi driver and during his free time he would look for Lea in the malls. In June 2001, Alan
reported Leas disappearance to the local police station and an alarm notice was issued. He also reported the
disappearance in NBI on July 2001. Alan filed a petition in March 2001 for the declaration of presumptive
death of his wife.

ISSUE: Whether Alan has a well-founded belief that his wife is already dead.

The court ruled that Alan failed to prove that he has a well-founded belief, before he filed his petition with
RTC, that his spouse was dead. He failed to present a witness other than the Barangay Captain. He even
failed to present those friends of Lea which he inquired to corroborate his testimony. He also failed to make
inquiries from his parents-in-law regarding Leas whereabouts before filing his petition in the RTC. It could
have enhanced his credibility had he made inquiries from his parents-in-law about Lea's whereabouts
considering that Lea's father was the owner of Radio DYMS. He did report and seek help of the local police
authorities and NBI to locate Lea but he did so only after the OSG filed its notice to dismiss his petition in

The presumption of death is established by law and no court declaration is needed for the presumption to arise.
Since death is presumed to have taken place by the seventh year of absence, Sofio is to be presumed dead
starting October 1982.

GR No. 180863, September 8, 2009
Angelita Valdez was married with Sofio in January 1971. She gave birth to a baby girl named Nancy. They
argued constantly because Sofio was unemployed and did not bring home any money. In March 1972, the latter
left their house. Angelita and her child waited until in May 1972, they decided to go back to her parents home. 3
years have passed without any word from Sofio until in October 1975 when he showed up and they agreed to
separate and executed a document to that effect. It was the last time they saw each other and had never heard
of ever since. Believing that Sofio was already dead, petitioner married Virgilio Reyes in June 1985. Virgilios
application for naturalization in US was denied because petitioners marriage with Sofio was subsisting. Hence, in
March 2007, petitioner filed a petition seeking declaration of presumptive death of Sofio.

ISSUE: Whether or not petitioners marriage with Virgilio is valid despite lack of declaration of presumptive death
of Sofio.

The court ruled that no decree on the presumption of Sofios death is necessary because Civil Code governs
during 1971 and not Family Code where at least 7 consecutive years of absence is only needed. Thus, petitioner
was capacitated to marry Virgilio and their marriage is legal and valid.

Fraud as a vice of consent in marriage, is limited exclusively by law to those kinds or species of fraud
enumerated in Art. [46]. Non-disclosure of a husbands premarital relationship w/ another woman is not one of
the enumerated circumstances that would constitute a ground for annulment.
[A woman cannot be said to have concealed her pregnancy w/ a man other than her husband when she was,
before the celebration of the marriage, already7 mos. pregnant & her pregnancy is readily apparent &
obvious. It is the concealment & not mere pregnancy that is the thrust of fraud.]
[Pregnancy is not readily apparent on its 4
month, especially if the woman is naturally plump or fat, hence
such a woman cannot rely on the Buccat ruling.] It is only on the 6
month of pregnancy that the enlargement
of the womans abdomen reaches a height above the umbilicus, making the roundness of the abdomen more
general & apparent.
[Impotency cannot be presumed.]

The task of protecting marriage as an inviolable social institution requires vigilant & zealous participation & not
mere pre-forma compliance.
[Even if a guilty party to a voidable marriages makes an admission constituting a confession judgment],
inasmuch as there is evidence of adultery independently of such statement, the decree (of annulment or legal
separation) may & should be granted, since it would not be based on [his] confession, but upon evidence
presented by the plaintiff. What the law prohibits is a judgment based exclusively or mainly on [guilty party]s
Collusion in divorce or legal separation means the agreement b/w the husband & wife for one of them to
commit, or to appear to commit, or to be represented in court as having committed, a matrimonial offense, or
to suppress evidence of a valid defense, for the purpose of enabling the other to obtain a divorce. The
agreement, if not express, may be implied from the acts of the parties. There would be collusion if the parties
had arranged to make it appear that a matrimonial offensehad been committed although it was not, or if the
parties had connived to bring about a legal separation (or annulment) even in the absence of ground therefor.
Collusion may not be inferred from the mere fact that the guilty party confesses to the offense & thus enables
the other party to procure evidence necessary to prove it. & proof that the [guilty party] desires the divorce &
makes no defense, is not by itself collusion.


An action for leg. sep. w/c involves nothing more than the bed-&-board separation of the spouses (there being
no absolute divorce in this jurisdiction) is purely personal. The CC of the Phils. recognizes this in its Art. 100,
by allowing only the innocent spouse (& no one else) to claim leg. sep.; & in its Art. 108, by providing that the
spouses can, by their reconciliation, stop or abate the proceedings & even rescind a decree of leg. sep.
already rendered. Being personal in character, it follows that the death of one party to the action causes the
death of the action itself actio personalis moritur cum persona.
A decree of legal separation, on the ground of concubinage, may be issued upon proof by preponderance of
evidence in the action for legal separation. No criml proceeding or conviction is necessary.
Condonation is the forgiveness of a marital offense constituting a ground for legal separation. Condonation is
the conditional forgiveness or remission, by a husband or wife of a matrimonial offense w/c the latter has
committed. Condonation is implied from sexual intercourse after knowledge of the other infidelity, such acts
necessary [imply] forgiveness. Single voluntary act of marital intercourse b/w the parties ordinarily is sufficient
to constitute condonation, & where the parties live in the same house, it is presumed that they live on terms of
matrimonial cohabitation.

Art. 58 of the FC mandates that an action for legal sepration must in no case be tried before 6 mos. shall
have elapsed since the filing of the petition, obviously in order to provide the parties to a cooling-off period.

[Art. 63] mandates the dissolution & liquidation of the property regime of the spouses upon finality of the
decree of legal separation. Such dissolution & liquidation are necessary consequences of the final
decree.This legal effect of the decree legal separation ipso facto or automatically folows, as an inevitable
incident of, the judgment decreeing legal separation.
[When one spouse dies before the conjugal property has been divided], the rules on dissolution & liquidation
of the conjugal partnership of gains under the [FC] would be applied when the decree of legal separation
became final. Upon the liquidation & distribution conformably w/ the law governing the effects of the final
decree of legal separation, the law on intestate succession should take over in the disposition of whatever
remaining properties have been allocated to the dead spouse.

[A married person], who is forced to leave the conjugal abode by [her spouse] w/o fault on her part, may
maintain an action against [her spouse] for separate maintenance when she has no other remedy, not
withstanding the provisions of the CC giving the person who is obliged to furnish support the option to satisfy
it either by paying a fixed pension or by receiving & maintaining in his own home the one having the right to
the same.
Our laws do not comprehend an action for damages b/w husband & wife merely b/c of breach of a marital
obligation. There are other remedies.
The subsequent valid marriage b/w the offender (rapist) & the offended party (rape victim) shall extinguish the
criml action or the penalty imposed.
In case it is the legal husband who is the offender, the subsequent forgiveness by the wife as the offended
party shall extinguish the criml action or the penalty: Provided, that the crime shall not be extinguished or the
penalty shall not be abated if the marriage be void ab initio.
No court is empowered as a judicial authority to compel a husband to live w/ his wife. Coverture cannot be
enforced by compulsion of a writ of habeas corpus carried out by sheriffs or by any other process. That is a
matter beyond judicial authority & is best left to the man & womans free choice.

It cannot be correctly argued that [a married person loses] her domicile of origin by operation of law as a
result of her marriage. The duty to live together can only be fulfilled if the husband & wife are physically
together. This takes into account the situations where the couple has many residences. If the husband has to
stay in or transfer to any one of their residences, the wife should necessarily be w/ him in order that they may
live together. Hence, it is illogical to conclude that [Art.69] refers to domicile & not to residence. O/w, we
shall be faced w/ a situation where the wife is left in the domicile while the husband, for professional or other
reasons, stays in one of their (various) residences.

ART 87: Art 87 of the FC expressly provides that the prohibitions against donations b/w spouses now applies
to donations b/w persons living together as husband & wife w/o a valid marriage
ART 148: Actual contribution is required by [Art 148] in contrast to Art 147 w/c states that efforts in the care &
maintenance of the fam & the household, are regarded as contributions to the acquisition of common property
by one who has no salary or income or work or industry. If the actual contribution of the party is not proved,
there will be no co-ownership & no presumption of equal shares. (Prove contribution first for presumption to
Cohabitation means more than sexual intercourse, especially when 1 of the parties is already old & may no
longer be interested in sex. At the very least, cohabitation is the public assumption by a man & a woman of
the marital reln, & dwelling together as man & wife, thereby holding themselves out to the public as such.
(Reiterates prohibition against donations b/w common-law relnships)

Art 124, FC (w/c is the same as Art 96) contemplates a situation where the spouse is absent, or separated in
fact or has abandoned the other or consent is w/held or cannot be obtained. Such rules do not apply to cases
where the non-consenting spouse is incapacitated or incompetent to give consent. The proper remedy is
judicial guardianship proceedings under rule 93 of the 1964 Revised RoC.

Physl separation alone is not the full meaning of the term "abandonment". The word "abandon", in its
ordinary sense, means to forsake entirely; to forsake or renounce utterly. To constitute abandonment, there
must be absolute cessation of marital relations & duties & rights, w/ the intention of perpetual separation.
Abandonment implies a departure by one spouse w/ the avowed intent never to return, followed by prolonged
absence w/o just cause, & w/o in the meantime providing in the least for ones fam although able to do so.

The only obligations incurred by the husband that are chargeable against the conjugal prop are those incurred
in the legit pursuit of his career, profession or business w/ the honest belief that he is doing right for the
benefit of the fam (considered as a redounding benefit to the fam). [Where a husband contracts an obligation
for HIS own benefit (in this case, the husband has already abandoned his fam), the conjugal prop cannot be
held liable for such obligation].
[Conjugal prop cant be liable if a decision holding a spouse SOLELY liable has become final & executory.]

The presumption [that all props acquired during the marriage conjugal], is not conclusive but merely
rebuttable, for the same law is unequivocal that it exists only "unless it be proved that it (the property) belongs
exclusively to the husband or the wife."
Proof is needful of the time of the making or construction of the improvements & the source of funds used
therefor. (In order to determine whether the improvement/land will pertain to the conjugal partnership or as
separate prop of either spouse)

ARTICLE 115-118
[Example of prop bought on installments, in this case, an insurance policy, w/c is paid thru monthly premiums.
If source of funds not proved to pay for such props, it shall be presumed to have been paid w/ conjugal props.
The nature of an insurance policy though, is divisible (as opposed to other props that can be bought thru
installments, e.g. a car), thus in this case, there was no need to determine when the ownership of the
insurance policy was vested, the SC ruled that the part of the insurance policy paid w/ exclusive prop are
exclusive & the part paid w/ conjugal prop are conjugal. It appears then, from how the SC handled this case,
that in dealing w/ Art 118, one has to take into consideration the ownership of a prop is vested.]
In the determination of the nature of a prop acquired by a person during coverture, the controlling factor is the
source of the money utilized in the purchase. [If prop was obtained thru a loan, the source of money to repay
the loan is controlling.]

ARTICLE 121-122
If the husband is the PRINCIPAL OBLIGOR in a loan contract, contract falls w/in the term obligations for the
benefit of the conjugal partnership. Benefit of the fam needs to be APPARENT at the time of the signing of
the contract. From the very nature of the contract of loan or services, the fam stands to benefit from the loan
facility or services to be rendered to the business or profession of the husband. It is immaterial, if in the end,
his business or profession fails or does not succeed. ON THE OTHER HAND, if the money or services are
given to another person or entity, & the husband acted only as a SURETY or GUARANTOR, that contract
cannot, by itself, alone be categorized as falling w/in the context of obligations for the benefit of the conjugal
partnership. The contract of loan or services is clearly for the benefit of the principal debtor & not for the
surety or his fam. No presumption can be inferred that, when a husband enters into a contract of surety or
accommodation agreement, it is for the benefit of the conjugal partnership. PROOF MUST BE PRESENTED
to establish benefit redounding to the conjugal partnership. BENEFITS resulting from a loan must be DIRECT
& CANNOT merely be a BY-PRODUCT or SPIN-OFF of the loan itself.
If a loan was obtained to purchase conjugal dwelling (or for some other fam benefit), it shall be the liability of
the conjugal partnership notw/standing the lack of consent of either spouse.

[Art 147, FC] applies only to cases in w/c a man & a woman live together as husband & wife w/o the benefit of
marriage provided they are not incapacitated to or are w/o impediment to marry each other, or in w/c the
marriage is void ab initio, provided it is not bigamous. [Art 148, FC would apply in such cases]
In a void marriage, regardless of the cause thereof, the prop relns of the parties during cohabitation is
governed by the provision of Art 147 or Art 148, FC, such as the case may be. The term capacitated in the
provision refers to the legal capacity of a party to contract marriage.
Co-ownership under Art 148 of the FC may ensue provided that the parties prove their actual joint contribution
of money, prop or industry and only to extent of their proportionate interest thereon.
Art 147 of the FC applies to union of parties who are legally capacitated & not barred by any impediment to
contract marriage, but whose marriage is nonetheless void (in this case, marriage was void due to Art. 36).
For Art 147 of the FC to apply, the ff elements must be present: 1. The man & the woman must be
capacitated to marry each other; 2. They live exclusively w/ each other as husband & wife; & 3. Their union is
w/o the benefit of marriage, or their marriage is void. Liquidation of props under this prop reln is governed by
the rules on co-ownership, thus there is no need to liquidate the props of the spouses in the same proceeding
for the declaration of nullity of marriage (unlike in marriages nullified under Art 40 & 45 where liquidation of
props is mandatory (pursuant to Art 50), else any subsequent marriage will be void as stated in Art 53).

Co-ownership contemplated in [Art 147] requires that the man & the woman living together must not in any
way be incapacitated to contract marriage, & in the absence of proof of joint actual contribution, the prop will
belong to the previous marriage pursuant to the provisions of Art 148.
Nothing in Art 148, FC provides that the administration of the prop amounts to a contribution in its acquisition

Unlike an act of alienation or encumbrance where the consent of both spouses is required, joint management
or administration does not require that the husband & wife always act together. Each spouse may validly
exercise full power of management alone, subject to the intervention of the court in proper cases as provided
under Art. 124 of the FC.

ARTICLE 150-151
Members of the fam must be construed in reln to Art 150 of the FC. Art 151 must be construed strictly,
hence a sister-in-law or a brother-in-law is not [a member of the fam]. Certification to file action by the brgy
chairman is sufficient compliance w/ Art 151.
Mere suspicion or doubt to the truth of the allegation that earnest efforts had been made toward a
compromise but the parties efforts proved unsuccessful is not a ground for dismissal. The ground for
dismissal is that such efforts had not really been exerted.
Whenever a stranger is a party in a case involving fam members, the requisite showing of earnest efforts to
compromise is no longer mandatory.
Art 151 is applicable only to ordinary civil actions, i.e. an action filed in a court of justice, whereby a party sues
another for the enforcement of a right, or the prevention or redress of a wrong.

ARTICLE 152-162
Under the FC, there is no need to constitute the fam home judicially or extrajudicially as required in the CC. If
fam actually resides in the premises, it is therefore, a fam home as contemplated by law. Art 162, FC simply
means that all existing fam residences at the time of the effectivity of the FC are considered fam homes & are
prospectively entitled to the benefits accorded to a fam home under the FC. It does not mean that Arts 152 & 153
have retroactive effect.
Occupancy of the fam home either by the owner thereof or by any of its beneficiaries must be actual.
Actual means something real or actually existing, as opposed to something merely possible, or to something w/c
is presumptive or constructive. Maids & overseers are not beneficiaries of fam home.

Presumption of legitimacy can only be overcome by clear proof that sex is impossible. Presumption survives
even if wife maintains illicit relnships.
Arts 164, 166, 170 & 171 govern a situation where a husband (or his heirs) denies as his own a child of his
wife & NOT a situation where a child is not to be the child of nature of a certain couple.

Sexual intercourse is presumed where personal access is not disproved unless such presumption is rebutted
by evidence to the contrary. This presumption is quasi-conclusive & may be refuted only by the physl
impossibility of coitus b/w husband & wife w/in the 1
120 days of the 300 days w/c immediately preceded the
birth of the child. Mother cannot claim that the child is her illegit child w/ someone as it is proscribed by Art
167 of the FC. Mother has no right to disavow a child b/c maternity is never uncertain. Spouses cannot agree
that a child is illegit.

ARTICLE 170-171
Only the husband, or in exceptional circumstances, his heirs, could impugn the legitimacy of a child born in a
valid & subsisting marriage. The child himself cannot choose his own filiation. If the husband, presumed to be
the father does not impugn the legitimacy of the child, then the status of the child is fixed, & the latter cannot
choose to be the child his mothers alleged paramour.

The due recognition of an illegit 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, & 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.
An order for recognition & support must be issued only if paternity or filiation is established by clear &
convincing evidence.
Right to an action for recognition under CC a vested right & not limited to natural children (children whose
parents were not disqualified by any legal impediment to marry each other, those that can be legitimated).
Under 285 of the CC, child can file action for recognition w/in 4 yrs of attaining majority.
To prove open & continuous possession of the status of an illegit child, there must be evidence of the
manifestation of the permanent intention of the supposed father to consider the child as his, by continuous &
clear manifestations of parental affection & care, w/c cannot be attributed to pure charity. Such acts must be
of such a nature that they reveal not only the conviction of paternity, but also the apparent desire to have &
treat the child as such in all relations in society & in life, not accidentally, but continuously. "Continuous"
means uninterrupted & consistent, but does not require any particular length of time.

Differentiates right of action to claim legitimacy & right to claim acknowledgment
Lasts during CHILDs lifetime Last during PRESUMED PARENTs lifetime
May be exercised against heirs of presumed
Generally, can be exercised against presumed
parents only. (Except: a) Presumed parents die while
child is minor; b) Upon discovery of some instrument
of express acknowledgment)
Transmissible to childs heirs IF he died: a) during
minority; b) while insane; or c) after the action had
been already instituted.
Not transmissible, may only be exercised by the child
claiming acknowledgment

Under Art 285 of the CC, action for recognition of natural children may be brought only during the lifetime of
the presumed parents except: 1) presumed parents died during the minority of the child, in w/c case child
must file action w/in 4 yrs of attaining majority; 2) After the death of the presumed parents, a document should
appear in w/c either or both parents recognize the child, in w/c case action must be filed w/in 4 yrs from
discovery of such document. It can never be transmitted as in an action for recognition, the party in the best
position to oppose the same is the putative parent himself.

ARTICLES 177-180
Legitimation is limited to natural children & cannot include those born of adulterous relns. Reasons: 1)
Rationale of legitimation would be destroyed; 2) Unfair to legit children in terms of successional rights; 3)
Problem of public scandal; 4) To grant privilege of legitimation to adulterous children would destroy sanctity of
marriage; 5) Very scandalous.

The relationship established by adoption is limited solely to the adopter & the adopted & does not extend to
the relatives of the adopting parents or of the adopted child except only as expressly provided for by law.
Hence, no relationship is created b/w the adopted & the collaterals of the adopting parents. As a
consequence, the adopted is an heir of the adopter but not of the relatives of the adopter.
Joint adoption by the husband & the wife is mandatory. Adoption has the ff effects: (1) sever all legal ties b/w
the biological parent(s) & the adoptee, except when the biological parent is the spouse of the adopter; (2)
deem the adoptee as a legit child of the adopter; & (3) give adopter & adoptee reciprocal rights & obligations
arising from the relationship of parent & child.
Adoption statutes, as well as matters of procedure, leading up to adoption, should be liberally construed to
carry out the beneficent purposes of the adoption institution & to protect the adopted child in the rights &
privileges coming to it as a result of the adoption.
Retroactive effect may be given to the granting of the petition of the petition for adoption where such is
essential to permit the accrual of some benefit or advantage in favor of the adopted child. But to give it
retroactive effect so as to impose a liability upon the adopting parents accruing at a time when the adopting
parents had no actual or physl custody over the adopted child would be unfair and unconscionable.

Support cannot be refused if abandonment of one spouse is caused by the other spouses own acts. Option
to give support (to give money or maintain the recipient in ones dwelling) cannot be afforded to the giver of
support if the giver makes it impossible for the recipient to accept his choice. (In this case, the husband who
wants BJ contended that he is willing to maintain his wife in the house, however, he cannot choose to give
support in that manner as he has driven his wife away from the conjugal home.)
The right to receive support can neither be renounced nor transmitted to a 3
person. Future support cannot
be the subject of compromise. In order to claim support, filiation &/or paternity must 1
be shown b/w claimant
& parent. Allowance for support is provisional b/c the amount may be increased or decreased depending
upon the means of the giver & the needs of the recipient.

If a child is under 7 y/o, the law presumes that the mother is the best custodian. The presumption is strong but
it is not conclusive. It can be overcome by compelling reasons. If a child is over 7, his choice is paramount
but, again, the court is not bound by that choice. Once the choice has been made though, the burden is on
the court to investigate if the parent thus chosen is unfit to assume parental authority & custodial
The matter of custody is not permanent & unalterable. If the parent who was given custody suffers a future
character change & becomes unfit, the matter of custody can always be re-examined & adjusted.
Art. 2180, CC applies to all schools, academic & non-academic. If academic, responsibility of tort committed
by student attaches to teacher in charge of such student. If non-academic, head will be responsible. The
student is in the custody of the school authorities as long as he is under the control & influence of the school
& w/in its premises, whether the semester has not yet begun or has already ended (as long as the student is
in the school in pursuance of a legit student objective or in the exercise/enjoyment of a legit student right) so,
the custody of the school is not co-terminous w/ the semester. Schools may exculpate itself from liability by
proof that it had exercised the diligence of a bonus paterfamilias.
Reiterates Amadora ruling. Art. 2176 can also be source of liability if there is GROSS NEGLIGENCE on the
part of the school (the teacher in charge or the head).
For persons exercising substitute/special parental authority to be liable for an injury cause by the
child/student, their negligence must be the proximate cause of the injury. Proximate cause that cause w/c in
the natural sequence of events, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury w/o w/c the
injury would not have occurred.
In adoption, parental authority ceases when the adopted child is turned over to the adopting parents (not on
the filing of petition of adoption nor the decree of judgment granting adoption.)
If the liability of the parents for crimes or quasi-delicts of their minor children is subsidiary, then the parents
can neither invoke nor be absolved of civil liability on the defense that they acted w/ the diligence of a good
father of a family to prevent damages. On the other hand, if such liability imputed to the parents is considered
direct & primary, that diligence would constitute a valid & substantial defense.

Legal separation not sufficient ground to change name. Art. 372, CC mandatory & Rule 103 of RoC cannot
prevail over it
Principle of disallowing name change due to false impression of family name valid to the extent only that it
would in great probability cause prejudice of future injury to the family whose name is involved or to the
community in general.

Declaration of presumptive death is a prima facie presumption only and is still disputable.

Change of gender(sex) (& name) allowed for intersex (some form of hermaphroditism) allowed. (In this case,
Jennifer Cagandahan was born female but her body produced more androgens, a male hormone, thus
making her (or him) a male as she (or he) grew older. Notice that at the start of the case, the SC referred to
her as she but in the latter pages, they referred to him as he. LOLS)

Annulment as a defense
The pendency of a petition for annulment had been raised as a defense in bigamy cases. There are two basic
arguments: (1) The first marriage is null and void or is a nullity; or (2) The second marriage is null and void. Let us
discuss each scenario.
The first marriage is allegedly null and void
In the case of Mercado vs. Tan,[1] the accused argued that he already obtained a judicial declaration of nullity of
his first marriage under Article 36 of the Family Code, thereby rendering it void ab initio. He argued that a void
marriage is deemed never to have taken place at all and, hence, there is no first marriage to speak of. The
accused also quoted the commentaries of former Justice Luis Reyes that "it is now settled that if the first marriage
is void from the beginning, it is a defense in a bigamy charge. But if the first marriage is voidable, it is not a
defense." The Supreme Court, in dismissing the argument of the accused, stated:
In the instant case, petitioner contracted a second marriage although there was yet no judicial declaration of
nullity of his first marriage. In fact, he instituted the Petition to have the first marriage declared void only after
complainant had filed a letter-complaint charging him with bigamy. By contracting a second marriage while the
first was still subsisting, he committed the acts punishable under Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code.
That he subsequently obtained a judicial declaration of the nullity of the first marriage was immaterial. To repeat,
the crime had already been consummated by then. Moreover, his view effectively encourages delay in the
prosecution of bigamy cases; an accused could simply file a petition to declare his previous marriage void and
invoke the pendency of that action as a prejudicial question in the criminal case. We cannot allow that.
The second marriage is allegedly null and void
The effect of the judicial declaration of the nullity of a second or subsequent marriage (on the ground of
psychological incapacity) on an individuals criminal liability for bigamy is a novel issue, until 2004 when the
Supreme Court decided Tenebro vs. Court of Appeals.[2] In that case, the accused argued that the declaration of
the nullity of the second marriage, which is an alleged indicator that the second marriage lacks the essential
requisites for validity, retroacts to the date on which the second marriage was celebrated. The accused then
concluded that since the third and fourth "elements" of bigamy are not present, he should be acquitted. The
Supreme Court, however, decided against the accused and dismissed his arguments, stating that:
Petitioner makes much of the judicial declaration of the nullity of the second marriage on the ground of
psychological incapacity, invoking Article 36 of the Family Code. What petitioner fails to realize is that a
declaration of the nullity of the second marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity is of absolutely no
moment insofar as the States penal laws are concerned.
As a second or subsequent marriage contracted during the subsistence of petitioners valid marriage to Villareyes,
petitioners marriage to Ancajas would be null and void ab initio completely regardless of petitioners
psychological capacity or incapacity. Since a marriage contracted during the subsistence of a valid marriage is
automatically void, the nullity of this second marriage is not per se an argument for the avoidance of criminal
liability for bigamy. Pertinently, Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code criminalizes any person who shall contract
a second or subsequent marriage before the former marriage has been legally dissolved, or before the absent
spouse has been declared presumptively dead by means of a judgment rendered in the proper proceedings. A
plain reading of the law, therefore, would indicate that the provision penalizes the mere act of contracting a
second or a subsequent marriage during the subsistence of a valid marriage.
It is important to note that there are vigorous dissents (contrary opinions) from other justices in Tenebro. The
concurring opinion of Justice Vitug is also worth reading.
Case to case basis
It must be emphasized that due to the apparently conflicting decisions on these issues, each case must be
examined separately. For instance, in Ty vs. Court of Appeals (not a criminal case, though), the Supreme Court
noted that the bigamous marriage in the above-mentioned case of Mercado vs. Tan was contracted during the
effectivity of the Family Code - not the Civil Code. According to the Supreme Court in Ty:
As to whether a judicial declaration of nullity of a void marriage is necessary, the Civil Code contains no express
provision to that effect. Jurisprudence on the matter, however, appears to be conflicting.
Originally, in People v. Mendoza, and People v. Aragon, this Court held that no judicial decree is necessary to
establish the nullity of a void marriage. Both cases involved the same factual milieu. Accused contracted a second
marriage during the subsistence of his first marriage. After the death of his first wife, accused contracted a third
marriage during the subsistence of the second marriage. The second wife initiated a complaint for bigamy. The
Court acquitted accused on the ground that the second marriage is void, having been contracted during the
existence of the first marriage. There is no need for a judicial declaration that said second marriage is void. Since
the second marriage is void, and the first one terminated by the death of his wife, there are no two subsisting valid
marriages. Hence, there can be no bigamy. Justice Alex Reyes dissented in both cases, saying that it is not for
the spouses but the court to judge whether a marriage is void or not.
In Gomez v. Lipana, and Consuegra v. Consuegra, however, we recognized the right of the second wife who
entered into the marriage in good faith, to share in their acquired estate and in proceeds of the retirement
insurance of the husband. The Court observed that although the second marriage can be presumed to be void ab
initio as it was celebrated while the first marriage was still subsisting, still there was a need for judicial declaration
of such nullity (of the second marriage). And since the death of the husband supervened before such declaration,
we upheld the right of the second wife to share in the estate they acquired, on grounds of justice and equity.
But in Odayat v. Amante (1977), the Court adverted to Aragon and Mendoza as precedents. We exonerated a
clerk of court of the charge of immorality on the ground that his marriage to Filomena Abella in October of 1948
was void, since she was already previously married to one Eliseo Portales in February of the same year. The
Court held that no judicial decree is necessary to establish the invalidity of void marriages. This ruling was
affirmed in Tolentino v. Paras.
Yet again in Wiegel v. Sempio-Diy (1986), the Court held that there is a need for a judicial declaration of nullity of
a void marriage. In Wiegel, Lilia married Maxion in 1972. In 1978, she married another man, Wiegel. Wiegel filed
a petition with the Juvenile Domestic Relations Court to declare his marriage to Lilia as void on the ground of her
previous valid marriage. The Court, expressly relying on Consuegra, concluded that:
There is likewise no need of introducing evidence about the existing prior marriage of her first husband at the time
they married each other, for then such a marriage though void still needs according to this Court a judicial
declaration (citing Consuegra) of such fact and for all legal intents and purposes she would still be regarded as a
married woman at the time she contracted her marriage with respondent Karl Heinz Wiegel; accordingly, the
marriage of petitioner and respondent would be regarded VOID under the law.
In Yap v. Court of Appeals, however, the Court found the second marriage void without need of judicial
declaration, thus reverting to the Odayat, Mendoza and Aragon rulings.
At any rate, the confusion under the Civil Code was put to rest under the Family Code. Our rulings in Gomez,
Consuegra, and Wiegel were eventually embodied in Article 40 of the Family Code. Article 40 of said Code
expressly required a judicial declaration of nullity of marriage
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.

In Terre v. Terre (1992) the Court, applying Gomez, Consuegra and Wiegel, categorically stated that a judicial
declaration of nullity of a void marriage is necessary. Thus, we disbarred a lawyer for contracting a bigamous
marriage during the subsistence of his first marriage. He claimed that his first marriage in 1977 was void since his
first wife was already married in 1968. We held that Atty. Terre should have known that the prevailing case law is
that for purposes of determining whether a person is legally free to contract a second marriage, a judicial
declaration that the first marriage was null and void ab initio is essential."
The Court applied this ruling in subsequent cases. In Domingo v. Court of Appeals (1993), the Court held:
Came the Family Code which settled once and for all the conflicting jurisprudence on the matter. A declaration of
absolute nullity of marriage is now explicitly required either as a cause of action or a ground for defense. (Art. 39
of the Family Code). Where the absolute nullity of a previous marriage is sought to be invoked for purposes of
contracting a second marriage, the sole basis acceptable in law for said projected marriage to be free from legal
infirmity is a final judgment declaring the previous marriage void. (Family Code, Art. 40; See also arts. 11, 13, 42,
44, 48, 50, 52, 54, 86, 99, 147, 148).
However, a recent case applied the old rule because of the peculiar circumstances of the case. In Apiag v.
Cantero, (1997) the first wife charged a municipal trial judge of immorality for entering into a second marriage.
The judge claimed that his first marriage was void since he was merely forced into marrying his first wife whom he
got pregnant. On the issue of nullity of the first marriage, we applied Odayat, Mendoza and Aragon. We held that
since the second marriage took place and all the children thereunder were born before the promulgation of Wiegel
and the effectivity of the Family Code, there is no need for a judicial declaration of nullity of the first marriage
pursuant to prevailing jurisprudence at that time.
Similarly, in the present case, the second marriage of private respondent was entered into in 1979, before Wiegel.
At that time, the prevailing rule was found in Odayat, Mendoza and Aragon. The first marriage of private
respondent being void for lack of license and consent, there was no need for judicial declaration of its nullity
before he could contract a second marriage. In this case, therefore, we conclude that private respondents second
marriage to petitioner is valid.