Sie sind auf Seite 1von 95

FC Case No.

1
Republic of the Philippines v Liberty Albios
G.R. No. 198780
October 16, 2013
Facts: On October 22, 2004, Fringer, an American citizen, and Albios were married
before Judge Ofelia I. Calo of the Metropolitan Trial Court, Branch59, Mandaluyong City
(MeTC). On December 6, 2006, Albios filed with the RTC a petition for declaration of
nullity of her marriage with Fringer alleging that immediately after their marriage, they
separated and never lived as husband and wife because they never really had any
intention of entering into a married state or complying with any of their essential marital
obligations. She described their marriage as one made in jest and, therefore, null and
void ab initio.
The RTC was of the view that the parties married each other for convenience
only. Giving credence to the testimony of Albios, it stated that she contracted Fringer to
enter into a marriage to enable her to acquire American citizenship; that in consideration
thereof, she agreed to pay him the sum of $2,000.00; that after the ceremony, the
parties went their separate ways; that Fringer returned to the United States and never
again communicated with her; and that, in turn, she did not pay him the $2,000.00
because he never processed her petition for citizenship. The RTC, thus, ruled that when
marriage was entered into for a purpose other than the establishment of a conjugal and
family life, such was a farce and should not be recognized from its inception.
On September 29, 2011, the CA affirmed the RTC ruling which found that the
essential requisite of consent was lacking. The CA stated that the parties clearly did not
understand the nature and consequence of getting married and that their case was
similar to a marriage in jest. It further explained that the parties never intended to enter
into the marriage contract and never intended to live as husband and wife or build a
family. It concluded that their purpose was primarily for personal gain, that is, for Albios
to obtain foreign citizenship, and for Fringer, the consideration of $2,000.00.
Issue: Whether or not the marriage contracted for the sole purpose of acquiring
American citizenship in consideration of $2,000.00 is considered void ab initio on the
ground of lack of consent
Held: NO.
Under said Article 2, for consent to be valid, it must be (1) freely given and (2)
made in the presence of a solemnizing officer. A "freely given" consent requires that the
contracting parties willingly and deliberately enter into the marriage. Consent must be
real in the sense that it is not vitiated nor rendered defective by any of the vices of
consent under Articles45 and 46 of the Family Code, such as fraud, force, intimidation,
and undue influence. Consent must also be conscious or intelligent, in that the parties
must be capable of intelligently understanding the nature of, and both the beneficial or

unfavorable consequences of their act. Their understanding should not be affected by


insanity, intoxication, drugs, or hypnotism.
Based on the above, consent was not lacking between Albios and Fringer. In fact,
there was real consent because it was not vitiated nor rendered defective by any vice of
consent. Their consent was also conscious and intelligent as they understood the
nature and the beneficial and inconvenient consequences of their marriage, as nothing
impaired their ability to do so. That their consent was freely given is best evidenced by
their conscious purpose of acquiring American citizenship through marriage. Such
plainly demonstrates that they willingly and deliberately contracted the marriage. There
was a clear intention to enter into a real and valid marriage so as to fully comply with the
requirements of an application for citizenship. There was a full and complete
understanding of the legal tie that would be created between them, since it was that
precise legal tie which was necessary to accomplish their goal.
The respondents marriage is not at all analogous to a marriage in jest.Albios and
Fringer had an undeniable intention to be bound in order to create the very bond
necessary to allow the respondent to acquire American citizenship. Only a genuine
consent to be married would allow them to further their objective, considering that only a
valid marriage can properly support an application for citizenship. There was, thus, an
apparent intention to enter into the actual marriage status and to create a legal tie, albeit
for a limited purpose. Genuine consent was, therefore, clearly present.
The avowed purpose of marriage under Article 1 of the Family Code is for the
couple to establish a conjugal and family life. The possibility that the parties in a
marriage might have no real intention to establish a life together is, however, insufficient
to nullify a marriage freely entered into in accordance with law. The same Article 1
provides that the nature, consequences, and incidents of marriage are governed by law
and not subject to stipulation. A marriage may, thus, only be declared void or voidable
under the grounds provided by law. There is no law that declares a marriage void if it is
entered into for purposes other than what the Constitution or law declares, such as the
acquisition of foreign citizenship. Therefore, so long as all the essential and formal
requisites prescribed by law are present, and it is not void or voidable under the
grounds provided by law, it shall be declared valid.

FC Case No. 2
G.R. No. 182438

July 2, 2014
RENE RONULO, Petitioner,
vs.
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondent.
DECISION

BRION, J.
Before the Court is a petition for review on certiorari1 filed by petitioner Fr. Rene Ronulo
challenging the April 3, 2008 decision2 of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. CR. No.
31028 which affirmed the decision of the Regional Trial Court.
The presented evidence showed that Joey Umadac and Claire Bingayen were
scheduled to marry each other on March 29, 2003 at the Sta. Rosa Catholic Parish
Church of San Nicolas, Ilocos Norte. However, on the day of the wedding, the supposed
officiating priest, Fr. Mario Ragaza, refused to solemnize the marriage upon learning
that the couple failed to secure a marriage license. As a recourse, Joey, who was then
dressed in barong tagalong,and Claire, clad in a wedding gown, together with their
parents, sponsors and guests, proceeded to the Independent Church of Filipino
Christians, also known as the Aglipayan Church. They requested the petitioner, an
Aglipayan priest, to perform a ceremony to which the latter agreed despite having been
informed by the couple that they had no marriage certificate.
The petitioner prepared his choir and scheduled a mass for the couple on the same
date. He conducted the ceremony in the presence of the groom, the bride, their parents,
the principal and secondary sponsors and the rest of their invited guests.
An information for violation of Article 352 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC), as
amended, was filed against the petitioner before the Municipal Trial Court allegedly
performing an illegal marriage ceremony.
The petitioner entered the plea of "not guilty" to the crime charged on arraignment.
The petitioner, while admitting that he conducted a ceremony, denied that his act of
blessing the couple was tantamount to a solemnization of the marriage as contemplated
by law.
The MTC found the petitioner guilty of violation of Article 352 of the RPC, as amended,
and imposed on him a P200.00 fine pursuant to Section 44 of Act No. 3613.
The RTC affirmed the findings of the MTC.
On appeal, the CA affirmed the RTCs ruling.

ISSUE: Whether or not the solemnizing officer performed a marriage ceremony (in
relation to the crime of illegal marriage).
RULING:
YES.
The elements of the crime punishable under Article 352 of the RPC, as amended, were
proven by the prosecution.
Article 352 of the RPC, as amended, penalizes an authorized solemnizing officer who
shall perform or authorize any illegal marriage ceremony. The elements of this crime are
as follows: (1) authority of the solemnizing officer; and (2) his performance of an illegal
marriage ceremony. In the present case, the petitioner admitted that he has authority to
solemnize a marriage. Hence, the only issue to be resolved is whether the alleged
"blessing" by the petitioner is tantamount to the performance of an"illegal marriage
ceremony" which is punishable under Article 352 of the RPC, as amended.
While Article 352 of the RPC, as amended, does not specifically define a "marriage
ceremony" and what constitutes its "illegal" performance, Articles 3(3) and 6 of the
Family Code are clear on these matters. These provisions were taken from Article 5523
of the New Civil Code which, in turn, was copied from Section 324 of the Marriage Law
with no substantial amendments. Article 625 of the Family Code provides that "[n]o
prescribed form or religious rite for the solemnization of the marriage is required. It shall
be necessary, however, for the contracting parties to appear personally before the
solemnizing officer and declare in the presence of not less than two witnesses of legal
age that they take each other as husband and wife." Pertinently, Article 3(3) mirrors
Article 6 of the Family Code and particularly defines a marriage ceremony as that which
takes place with the appearance of the contracting parties before the solemnizing officer
and their personal declaration that they take each other as husband and wife in the
presence of not less than two witnesses of legal age.
Even prior to the date of the enactment of Article 352 of the RPC, as amended, the rule
was clear that no prescribed form of religious rite for the solemnization of the marriage
is required. However, as correctly found by the CA, the law sets the minimum
requirements constituting a marriage ceremony: first, there should be the personal
appearance of the contracting parties before a solemnizing officer; and second, heir
declaration in the presence of not less than two witnesses that they take each other as
husband and wife.
As to the first requirement, the petitioner admitted that the parties appeared before him
and this fact was testified to by witnesses. On the second requirement, we find that,
contrary to the petitioners allegation, the prosecution has proven, through the testimony
of Florida(mother of the bride), that the contracting parties personally declared that they
take each other as husband and wife.

We also do not agree with the petitioner that the principle of separation of church and
State precludes the State from qualifying the church "blessing" into a marriage
ceremony. Contrary to the petitioners allegation, this principle has been duly preserved
by Article 6 of the Family Code when it provides that no prescribed form or religious rite
for the solemnization of marriage is required. This pronouncement gives any religion or
sect the freedom or latitude in conducting its respective marital rites, subject only to the
requirement that the core requirements of law be observed.
From these perspectives, we find it clear that what the petitioner conducted was a
marriage ceremony, as the minimum requirements set by law were complied with. While
the petitioner may view this merely as a "blessing," the presence of the requirements of
the law constitutive of a marriage ceremony qualified this "blessing" into a "marriage
ceremony" as contemplated by Article 3(3) of the Family Code and Article 352 of the
RPC, as amended.

FC Case No. 3
Topic: Unknown as to Civil Law. The case is more on the Political Law side.
The Reproductive Health Law is a consolidation and enhancement of existing reproductive laws. It seeks to enhance
the population control program of the government in order to promote public welfare. However, when coercive
measures are found within the law, provisions must be removed or altered in order to ensure that it does not defy the
Constitution by infringing on the rights of the people.

IMBONG V. OCHOA JR.


G.R. No. 204819

April 8, 2014

Ponente: Jose Catral Mendoza


En Banc
FACTS:
Petition: to declare provisions of Republic Act No. 10354 as unconstitutional
December 21, 2012: Congress enacted RA No. 10354 also known as the Responsible
Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act of 2012 (RH LAW)
The presidents imprimatur and support for the said law lead to a range of
petitionsagainst the law leading to iuris controversy in court. Petitions for certiorari
andprohibition were placed by numerous parties. All in all, 14 petitions and 2 petitionsinintervention were filed.
March 15, 2013: the RH-IRR or enforcement of the law took place
March 19, 2013: After deliberating the issues and arguments raised, the court issued
Status Quo Ante Order (SQAO) which lead to a 120 day halt on the implementation of
the legislation
Due to further arguments and debates from opposing parties, the SQAO was extended
until further orders of the court last July 16, 2013
Position of Petitioner:
- Petitioners claim that the provisions of RA 10354 are unconstitutional as they violate the
rights to life, to health, to freedom of expression and speech, to the privacy of families, to
academic freedom, to due process of law, to equal protection, and against involuntary
servitude. They also intrude on the autonomy of local governments and the ARMM, and
violate natural law. Furthermore, they claim that Congress delegation of authority to the
FDA in determining which
should be included in the EDL is invalid.
Position of Respondent

There is no actual case or controversy and, therefore, the issues are not yet ripe for
judicial determination
Some petitioners lack standing to question the RH Law
The petitions are essentially petitions for declaratory relief over which the Court has no
original jurisdiction.

ISSUES:
(Substantive) Whether or not the RH Law is unconstitutional on the grounds that it violates:
Right to Life
Right to Health
Freedom of Religion and the Right to Free Speech
The Family
Freedom of Expression and Academic Freedom
Due Process
Equal Protection
Involuntary Servitude
Autonomy of Local Governments/ARMM
HELD:
Right to Life NO
Constitution intended that
1) conception to refer to the time of fertilization and
2) the protection of the unborn upon said fertilization

Not all contraceptives are to be banned (only those that kill a fertilized ovum)
Contraceptives that prevent union of sperm and egg are thus permissible
It is the intended by the framers of the 1987 Constitution to prevent the enacting of a law
that legalizes abortion.
RH law prohibits abortion
RH law recognizes that abortion is a crime
RH law prohibits abortifacients

The Family - YES


Section 23(a)(2)(i) of the RH Law, which needs only the consent of the spouse
undergoing the provision in order to undergo reproductive procedures intrudes into
martial privacy and autonomy and goes against the constitutional safeguards for the
family as the basic social institution. Not only that, but the exclusion of parental consent
in cases where a minor undergoing a procedure is already a parent or has had a
miscarriage (Section 7 of the RH Law) is also anti-family and violates Article II, Section
12 of the Constitution, which declares that the rearing of children by parents is a natural
right.
Final Ruling
The petitions were partially granted. The RA 10354 is declared constitutional, and Status

Quo Ante Order lifted with respect to provisions of RA 10354 that have been declared as
constitutional. However, some provisions and their corresponding provisions in the RH-IRR
have been declared unconstitutional.

FC Case No. 4
RE: Marriage License
Restituto Alcantara vs Rosita Alcantara
G.R. No. 167746, August 28, 2007
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.:
FACTS: Restituto Alcantara filed a petition for annulment of marriage against Rosita Alcantara
alleging that on December 8, 1982 he and Rosita, without securing the required marriage
license, went to the Manila City Hall for the purpose of looking for a fixer who could arrange a
marriage for them before a certain Rev. Navarro, a Minister of the Gospel of the CDCC BR
Chapel. They got married on the same day. Restituto and Rosita went through another
marriage ceremony in Tondo, Manila, on March 26, 1983. The marriage was again celebrated
without the parties securing a marriage license. The alleged marriage license, procured in
Carmona, Cavite, appearing on the marriage contract, is a sham, as neither party was a
resident of Carmona, and they never went to Carmona to apply for a license with the local civil
registrar of the said place. In 1988, they parted ways and lived separate lives.
Answering petitioners petition for annulment of marriage, respondent asserts the validity of their
marriage and maintains that there was a marriage license issued as evidenced by a certification
from the Office of the Civil Registry of Carmona, Cavite. And contrary to petitioners
representation, respondent gave birth to their first child named Rose Ann Alcantara and to
another daughter named Rachel Ann Alcantara. Rosita also allege that Petitioner has a mistress
with whom he has three children; that Restituto only filed the annulment of their marriage to
evade prosecution for concubinage. Respondent, in fact, has filed a case
for concubinage against petitioner.
RTC: Petition Dismissed for lack of merit
CA: Dismissed. Held that the marriage license of the parties is presumed to be regularly issued
and petitioner had not presented any evidence to overcome the presumption. Moreover, the
parties marriage contract being a public document is a prima facie proof of the questioned
marriage under Section 44, Rule 130 RC.
ISSUE: Whether or not the marriage is valid
HELD: The requirement and issuance of a marriage license is the States demonstration of its
involvement and participation in every marriage, in the maintenance of which the general public
is interested. Restituto cannot insist on the absence of a marriage license to impugn the validity
of his marriage. The cases where the court considered the absence of a marriage license as a
ground for considering the marriage void are clear-cut. In this case, the marriage contract
between the parties reflects a marriage license number. A certification to this effect was also
issued by the local civil registrar of Carmona, Cavite. The certification moreover is precise in

that it specifically identified the parties to whom the marriage license was issued, namely
Restituto Alcantara and Rosita Almario, further validating the fact that a license was in fact
issued to the parties herein. Restituto, in a faint attempt to demolish the probative value of the
marriage license, claims that neither he nor respondent is a resident of Carmona, Cavite. Even
then, the Supreme Court still holds that there is no sufficient basis to annul the marriage.
Issuance of a marriage license in a city or municipality, not the residence of either of the
contracting parties, and issuance of a marriage license despite the absence of publication or
prior to the completion of the 10-day period for publication are considered mere irregularities
that do not affect the validity of the marriage. An irregularity in any of the formal requisites of
marriage does not affect its validity but the party or parties responsible for the irregularity are
civilly, criminally and administratively liable. Semper praesumitur pro matrimonio. The
presumption is always in favor of the validity of the marriage. Every intendment of the law or fact
leans toward the validity of the marriage bonds. The Courts look upon this presumption with
great favor. It is not to be lightly repelled; on the contrary, the presumption is of great weight.

FC Case No. 5

Lavadia vs Heirs of Luna

Facts:
Atty. Luna contracted his first marriage with Eugenia where they begot 7 children, herein
respondents. After several years of being married, they decided to live apart and agreed to
separation of property through a written agreement. Eventually, they decided to obtain a divorce
decree in Sto. Domingo, Dominican Republic. Atty. Luna then contracted his second marriage
with Soledad, herein petitioner, and went back to the Philippines to live as husband and wife.
Atty. Luna was a named partner in one of the prestigious law firm. After he returned to
the Philippines, he decided to organize a new firm where he was became a managing partner.
The firm was able to acquire a condominium unit where Atty. Luna owned (46/100) shares. The
firm was later on dissolved and the partners decided to divide their shares in the condominium
giving Atty. Luna 25/100 shares.
After the death of ATTY. JUAN, his share in the condominium unit including the law
books, office furniture and equipment found therein were taken over by Gregorio Z. Luna, ATTY.
LUNAs son of the first marriage.
Soledad then filed a complaint in the RTC of Makati against the heirs of Atty. Luna
regarding the 25/100 pro-indiviso share of ATTY. Luna in the condominium unit as well as the
law books, office furniture and equipment where she alleged that the subject properties were
acquired during the existence of the their marriage and through their joint efforts that since they
had no children, she became co-owner of the said properties upon the death of ATTY. LUNA.
RTC ruled in the negative as to the 25/100 shares in the condominium property but
declared Soledad as the owner of the law books. Both parties appealed to CA where it modified
the decision of the RTC declaring the heirs of Atty. Luna as the owner of the condominium share
and the law books. Thus, petitioner raised the issue to the SC.
Issues:
The decisive question to be resolved is who among the contending parties should be entitled to
the 25/100 pro indiviso shares in the condominium unit; and to the law books.
1.
2.

Held:

Whether the divorce between Atty. Luna and Eugenia had validly dissolved the first
marriage; and,
Whether the second marriage entered into by the late Atty. Luna and the petitioner
entitled the latter to any rights in property.

1. Atty. Lunas first marriage with Eugenia subsisted up to the time of his death.

The first marriage between Atty. Luna and Eugenia, both Filipinos, was solemnized in
the Philippines on September 10, 1947. The law in force at the time of the solemnization was
the Spanish Civil Code, which adopted the nationality rule. The Civil Code continued to follow
the nationality rule, to the effect that Philippine laws relating to family rights and duties, or to the
status, condition and legal capacity of persons were binding upon citizens of the Philippines,
although living abroad. Pursuant to the nationality rule, Philippine laws governed this case by
virtue of both Atty. Luna and Eugenio having remained Filipinos until the death of Atty. Luna on
July 12, 1997 terminated their marriage.
It is true that on January 12, 1976, the Court of First Instance (CFI) of Sto. Domingo in
the Dominican Republic issued the Divorce Decree dissolving the first marriage of Atty. Luna
and Eugenia. Conformably with the nationality rule, however, the divorce, even if voluntarily
obtained abroad, did not dissolve the marriage between Atty. Luna and Eugenia, which
subsisted up to the time of his death on July 12, 1997. This finding conforms to the Constitution,
which characterizes marriage as an inviolable social institution, and regards it as a special
contract of permanent union between a man and a woman for the establishment of a conjugal
and family life. The non-recognition of absolute divorce in the Philippines is a manifestation of
the respect for the sanctity of the marital union especially among Filipino citizens. It affirms that
the extinguishment of a valid marriage must be grounded only upon the death of either spouse,
or upon a ground expressly provided bylaw. For as long as this public policy on marriage
between Filipinos exists, no divorce decree dissolving the marriage between them can ever be
given legal or judicial recognition and enforcement in this jurisdiction.

2. Atty. Lunas marriage with Soledad, being bigamous, was void; properties acquired
during their marriage were governed by the rules on co-ownership.
Due to the second marriage between Atty. Luna and the petitioner being void ab initio by
virtue of its being bigamous, the properties acquired during the bigamous marriage were
governed by the rules on co-ownership, conformably with Article 144 of the Civil Code, viz:
Article 144. When a man and a woman live together as husband and wife, but they are not
married, or their marriage is void from the beginning, the property acquired by either or both of
them through their work or industry or their wages and salaries shall be governed by the rules
on co-ownership.(n)
In such a situation, whoever alleges co-ownership carried the burden of proof to confirm
such fact. To establish co-ownership, therefore, it became imperative for the petitioner to offer
proof of her actual contributions in the acquisition of property. Her mere allegation of coownership, without sufficient and competent evidence, would warrant no relief in her favor.
SOLEDAD was not able to prove by preponderance of evidence that her own independent
funds were used to buy the law office condominium and the law books subject matter in
contention in this case.

WHEREFORE, the Court AFFIRMS the decision promulgated on November 11, 2005; and
ORDERS the petitioner to pay the costs of suit. SO ORDERED.

FC Case No. 7 Art. 26, FC recognition of foreign judgment; Art. 35(4), FC bigamy: ground for
nullity of marriage

Fujiki v. Marinay
June 26, 2013
Carpio, J.
2nd Division
Facts:
Minoru Fujiki, a Japanese national, married Maria Paz Galela Marinay in the Philippines on 23
January 2004. The marriage did not sit well with Fujikis parents. Thus, Fujiki could not bring his
wife to Japan where he resides. Eventually, they lost contact with each other.
In 2008, Marinay met another Japanese, Shinichi Maekara (Maekara). Without the first marriage
being dissolved, Marinay and Maekara were married on 15 May 2008 in Quezon City,
Philippines. Maekara brought Marinay to Japan. However, Marinay allegedly suffered physical
abuse from Maekara. She left Maekara and started to contact Fujiki.
Fujiki and Marinay met in Japan and they were able to reestablish their relationship. In 2010,
Fujiki helped Marinay obtain a judgment from a family court in Japan which declared the
marriage between Marinay and Maekara void on the ground of bigamy. On 14 January 2011,
Fujiki filed a petition in the RTC seeking, among others, the (1) recognition of Foreign Judgment
(or Decree of Absolute Nullity of Marriage), and (2) that the bigamous marriage between
Marinay and Maekara be declared void ab initio under Articles 35(4) and 41 of the Family Code
of the Philippines.
RTC ruling
Sec. 2. Petition for declaration of absolute nullity of void marriages.
(a) Who may file. A petition for declaration of absolute nullity of void marriage may be filed
solely by the husband or the wife.
xxxx
Sec. 4. Venue. The petition shall be filed in the Family Court of the province or city where the
petitioner or the respondent has been residing for at least six months prior to the date of filing,
or in the case of a non-resident respondent, where he may be found in the Philippines, at the
election of the petitioner. x x x
The RTC ruled, without further explanation, that the petition was in "gross violation" of the above
provisions. The trial court based its dismissal on Section 5(4) of A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC which
provides that "[f]ailure to comply with any of the preceding requirements may be a ground for
immediate dismissal of the petition." Apparently, the RTC took the view that only "the husband
or the wife," in this case either Maekara or Marinay, can file the petition to declare their marriage
void, and not Fujiki.

Issues:
(1) Whether the Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment of
Voidable Marriages (A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC) is applicable.
(2) Whether a husband or wife of a prior marriage can file a petition to recognize a foreign
judgment nullifying the subsequent marriage between his or her spouse and a foreign citizen on
the ground of bigamy.
SC decision
Petition granted.
The Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment of Voidable
Marriages (A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC) does not apply in a petition to recognize foreign judgment
relating to the status of a marriage where one of the parties is a citizen of a foreign country.
Moreover, in Juliano-Llave v. Republic, this Court held that the rule in A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC that
only the husband or wife can file a declaration of nullity or annulment of marriage "does not
apply if the reason behind the petition is bigamy.
I
For Philippine courts to recognize a foreign judgment relating to the status of a marriage where
one of the parties is a citizen of a foreign country, the petitioner only needs to prove the foreign
judgment as a fact under the Rules of Court. To hold that A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC applies to a
petition for recognition of foreign judgment would mean that the trial court and the parties should
follow its provisions. It will defeat the purpose of recognizing foreign judgments, which is "to limit
repetitive litigation on claims and issues. The interpretation of the RTC is tantamount to
relitigating the case on the merits. In Mijares v. Raada, this Court explained that "[i]f every
judgment of a foreign court were reviewable on the merits, the plaintiff would be forced back on
his/her original cause of action, rendering immaterial the previously concluded litigation.
A foreign judgment relating to the status of a marriage affects the civil status, condition and legal
capacity of its parties. However, the effect of a foreign judgment is not automatic. To extend the
effect of a foreign judgment in the Philippines, Philippine courts must determine if the foreign
judgment is consistent with domestic public policy and other mandatory laws. Article 15 of the
Civil Code provides that "[l]aws relating to family rights and duties, or to the status, condition
and legal capacity of persons are binding upon citizens of the Philippines, even though living
abroad." This is the rule of lex nationalii in private international law. Thus, the Philippine State
may require, for effectivity in the Philippines, recognition by Philippine courts of a foreign
judgment affecting its citizen, over whom it exercises personal jurisdiction relating to the status,
condition and legal capacity of such citizen.
A petition to recognize a foreign judgment declaring a marriage void does not require relitigation
under a Philippine court of the case as if it were a new petition for declaration of nullity of
marriage. Philippine courts cannot presume to know the foreign laws under which the foreign
judgment was rendered. They cannot substitute their judgment on the status, condition and
legal capacity of the foreign citizen who is under the jurisdiction of another state. Thus,
Philippine courts can only recognize the foreign judgment as a fact according to the rules of
evidence.

II
Section 2(a) of A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC does not preclude a spouse of a subsisting marriage to
question the validity of a subsequent marriage on the ground of bigamy. On the contrary, when
Section 2(a) states that "[a] petition for declaration of absolute nullity of void marriage may be
filed solely by the husband or the wife"7 it refers to the husband or the wife of the subsisting
marriage. Under Article 35(4) of the Family Code, bigamous marriages are void from the
beginning. Thus, the parties in a bigamous marriage are neither the husband nor the wife under
the law. The husband or the wife of the prior subsisting marriage is the one who has the
personality to file a petition for declaration of absolute nullity of void marriage under Section 2(a)
of A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC.
Article 35(4) of the Family Code, which declares bigamous marriages void from the beginning, is
the civil aspect of Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code, which penalizes bigamy. Bigamy is a
public crime. Thus, anyone can initiate prosecution for bigamy because any citizen has an
interest in the prosecution and prevention of crimes. If anyone can file a criminal action which
leads to the declaration of nullity of a bigamous marriage, there is more reason to confer
personality to sue on the husband or the wife of a subsisting marriage. The prior spouse does
not only share in the public interest of prosecuting and preventing crimes, he is also personally
interested in the purely civil aspect of protecting his marriage.
When the right of the spouse to protect his marriage is violated, the spouse is clearly an injured
party and is therefore interested in the judgment of the suit. Juliano-Llave ruled that the prior
spouse "is clearly the aggrieved party as the bigamous marriage not only threatens the financial
and the property ownership aspect of the prior marriage but most of all, it causes an emotional
burden to the prior spouse."80 Being a real party in interest, the prior spouse is entitled to sue in
order to declare a bigamous marriage void. For this purpose, he can petition a court to
recognize a foreign judgment nullifying the bigamous marriage and judicially declare as a fact
that such judgment is effective in the Philippines. Once established, there should be no more
impediment to cancel the entry of the bigamous marriage in the civil registry.

FC Case No. 8
TUPAL VS ROJO
A.M. No. MTJ-14-1842
February 24, 2014
FACTS
Rex M. Tupal filed with the Office of the Court Administrator a complaint against Judge
Remegio V. Rojo for violating the Code of Judicial Conduct and for gross ignorance of the law.
Allegedly, Judge Remegio V. Rojo solemnized marriages without the required marriage license.
He instead notarized affidavits of cohabitation and issued them to the contracting parties. He
notarized these affidavits on the day of the parties marriage. Herein petitioner contends that
fgor notarizing affidavits of cohabitation of parties whose marriage he solemnized, Judge Rojo
allegedly violated Circular No. 1-90 dated February 26, 1990. Circular No. 1-90 allows
municipal trial court judges to act as notaries public ex officio and notarize documents only if
connected with their official functions and duties. Rex argues that affidavits of cohabitation are
not connected with a judges official functions and duties as solemnizing officer. Thus, Judge
Rojo cannot notarize ex officio affidavits of cohabitation of parties whose marriage he
solemnized.
In his defense, herein respondent judge argued that petitioner was only harassing him
because he is the father of Frialyn Tupal, which has a pending perjury case before his sala.
Moreover, he argued that the filing of the administrative case against him was only to delay
Frialyns case. He further argued that notarizing affidavits of cohabitation was connected with
his official functions and duties as a judge. The Guidelines on the Solemnization of Marriage by
the Members of the Judiciary does not prohibit judges from notarizing affidavits of cohabitation
of parties whose marriage they will solemnize. Thus, there was no violation pursuant to Circular
No. 1-90.
In its report dated July 30, 2013, the Office of the Court Administrator found that
respondent judge violated Circular No. 1-90. According to the OCA, affidavits of cohabitation are
documents not connected with municipal trial court judges official functions and duties. Under
the Guidelines on the Solemnization of Marriage by the Members of the Judiciary, a judges duty
is to personally examine the allegations in the affidavit of cohabitation before performing the
marriage ceremony. Nothing in the Guidelines authorizes judges to notarize affidavits of
cohabitation of parties whose marriage they will solemnize.
ISSUE
Whether Judge Rojo is guilty of violating the New Code of Judicial Conduct and of gross
ignorance of the law.
RULING

Yes. Before performing the marriage ceremony, the judge must personally interview the
contracting parties and examine the requirements they submitted. The parties must have
complied with all the essential and formal requisites of marriage. Among these formal requisites
is a marriage license. Hence, a marriage license is issued by the local civil registrar to parties
who have all the qualifications and none of the legal disqualifications to contract marriage.
Before performing the marriage ceremony, the judge must personally examine the marriage
license presented.
If the contracting parties have cohabited as husband and wife for at least five years and
have no legal impediment to marry, they are exempt from the marriage license requirement.
Instead, the parties must present an affidavit of cohabitation sworn to before any person
authorized by law to administer oaths. The judge, as solemnizing officer, must personally
examine the affidavit of cohabitation as to the parties having lived together as husband and wife
for at least five years and the absence of any legal impediment to marry each other. The judge
must also execute a sworn statement that he personally ascertained the parties qualifications to
marry and found no legal impediment to the marriage. Article 34 of the Family Code of the
Philippines provides:
Art. 34. No license shall be necessary for the marriage of a man and a woman who have lived
together as husband and wife for at least five years and without any legal impediment to marry
each other. The contracting parties shall state the foregoing facts in an affidavit before any person
authorized by law to administer oaths. The solemnizing officer shall also state under oath that he
ascertained the qualifications of the contracting parties and found no legal impediment to the
marriage.

FC Case No. 9
Marriages; Declaration of Nullity, Common-Law Cohabitation
* Note that the governing law in this case is the Civil Code

Republic of the Philippines v. Jose A. Dayot


550 SCRA 435 * March 28, 2008
Chico-Nazario, J.:
Third Division
Facts:
Jose and Felisa Dayot were married on November 24, 1986 at the Pasay City Hall. In
lieu of a marriage license, Jose and Felisa executed a sworn affidavit attesting that both of them
had attained the age of maturity and that being unmarried, they had lived together as husband
and wife for at least five years.
On July 7, 1993, Jose filed a Complaint for Annulment or Declaration of Nullity of
Marriage with the RTC, Binan Laguna. He contended that his marriage with Felisa was a sham,
as no marriage ceremony was celebrated, that he did not execute the sworn affidavit and that
his consent to the marriage was secured through fraud.
Jose insists that he was introduced Felisa only in 1986 and she thereafter became her
landlady. One day, Felisa asked him to accompany her to the Pasay City Hall to claim a
package sent to Felisa by her brother from Saudi Arabia. This is when Felisa fraudulently
secured his signatures in the purported marriage contract by making him believe that he needed
to sign three folded papers so that the package could be released to Felisa. He reluctantly
signed then immediately left. According to him, it was only in February 1987 when he
discovered that he had contracted marriage with Felisa when he saw the alleged marriage
certificate on top of the sala table.
Felisa declared, for her part, that they had maintained their relationship as man and wife
without the legality of marriage in the early part of 1980 but deferred to contract marriage on
account of their age difference.
The RTC ruled in favor of Felisa stating among others that Joses version is implausible
because any person in his right frame of mind would easily suspect any attempt to make him
sign a blank sheet of paper. Jose even wrote Felisas name as his wife in the duly notarized
statement of assets and liabilities he filled up on May 12, 1988, one year after his alleged
discovery of the purported marriage contract. Additionally, Joses cause of action relating to
fraud had already prescribed.

The CA initially affirmed the RTCs decision on the ground that the circumstances do not
fall squarely with the grounds constituting fraud pursuant to the Civil Code. The CA accepted the
argument that Jose and Felisas case is one of exceptional character under Article 76 of the
Civil which allows the execution of affidavit in lieu of marriage license.
However, the CA reversed itself and declared the marriage between Jose and Felisa
void ab initio when it determined that the affidavit of marital cohabitation was false with respect
to the five-year period prescribed by law. The CA gave credence to Joses opposition which
cited the legal condition that the man and woman must have been living together as husband
and wife for at least five years before the marriage.
Felisa sought reconsideration but to no avail. Hence this petition. The OSG filed a
separate petition praying for the reversal of the CAs decision which declared the marriage
between Felisa and Jose void ab initio.
Issue:
Whether the falsity of an affidavit of marital cohabitation, where the parties have in
truth fallen short of the minimum five-year requirement, effectively renders the marriage
void ab initio for lack of a marriage license.
Held:
We answer in the affirmative.
For the exception in Article 76 1 to apply, it is a sine qua non thereto that the man and the
woman must have attained the age of majority, and that, being unmarried, they have lived
together as husband and wife for at least five years.
To settle all doubts, jurisprudence has laid down the rule that the five-year common-law
cohabitation period under Article 76 means a five-year period computed back from the date of
celebration of marriage, and refers to a period of legal union had it not been for the absence of a
marriage. It covers the years immediately preceding the day of the marriage, characterized by
exclusivity - meaning no third party was involved at any time within the five years - and
continuity that is unbroken.
A strict but reasonable construction of Article 76 leaves us with no other expediency but
to read the law as it is plainly written. The exception of a marriage license under Article 76
applies only to those who have lived together as husband and wife for at least five years and
desire to marry each other.

1 ART. 76. No marriage license shall be necessary when a man and a woman who have attained the age of majority
and who, being unmarried, have lived together as husband and wife for at least five years, desire to marry each other.
The contracting parties shall state the foregoing facts in an affidavit before any person authorized by law to
administer oaths. The official, priest or minister who solemnized the marriage shall also state in an affidavit that he
took steps to ascertain the ages and other qualifications of the contracting parties and that he found no legal
impediment to the marriage.

The Civil Code, in no ambiguous terms, places a minimum period requirement of five
years of cohabitation. No other reading of the law can be had, since the language of Article 76 is
precise. The minimum requisite of five years of cohabitation is an indispensability carved in the
language of the law.
For a marriage celebrated under Article 76 to be valid, this material fact cannot be
dispensed with. It is embodied in the law not as a directory requirement, but as one that
partakes of a mandatory character.
It is worthy to mention that Article 76 also prescribes that the contracting parties shall
state the requisite facts in an affidavit before any person authorized by law to administer oaths;
and that the official, priest or minister who solemnized the marriage shall also state in an
affidavit that he took steps to ascertain the ages and other qualifications of the contracting
parties and that he found no legal impediment to the marriage.
It is indubitably established that Jose and Felisa have not lived together for five years at
the time they executed their sworn affidavit and contracted marriage. The Republic admitted that
Jose and Felisa started living together only in June 1986, or barely five months before the
celebration of their marriage. The Court of Appeals also noted Felisas testimony that Jose was
introduced to her by her neighbor, Teresita Perwel, sometime in February or March 1986 after
the EDSA Revolution. The appellate court also cited Felisas own testimony that it was only in
June 1986 when Jose commenced to live in her house.
Therefore, the falsity of the affidavit dated 24 November 1986, executed by Jose and
Felisa to exempt them from the requirement of a marriage license, is beyond question.

Other Corollary Doctrines in this Case


1. On Presumption of Marriage
Anent petitioners reliance on the presumption of marriage, this Court holds that the same finds
no applicability to the case at bar.
Essentially, when we speak of a presumption of marriage, it is with reference to the prima facie
presumption that a man and a woman deporting themselves as husband and wife have entered
into a lawful contract of marriage.
Restated more explicitly, 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 present case does not involve an apparent marriage to which the presumption still needs to
be applied. There is no question that Jose and Felisa actually entered into a contract of
marriage on 24 November 1986, hence, compelling Jose to institute a Complaint for Annulment
and/or Declaration of Nullity of Marriage, which spawned the instant consolidated Petitions.

In the same vein, the declaration of the Civil Code that every intendment of law or fact leans
towards the validity of marriage will not salvage the parties marriage, and extricate them from
the effect of a violation of the law.
The marriage of Jose and Felisa was entered into without the requisite marriage license or
compliance with the stringent requirements of a marriage under exceptional circumstance. The
solemnization of a marriage without prior license is a clear violation of the law and would lead or
could be used, at least, for the perpetration of fraud against innocent and unwary parties, which
was one of the evils that the law sought to prevent by making a prior license a prerequisite for a
valid marriage.
The protection of marriage as a sacred institution requires not just the defense of a true and
genuine union but the exposure of an invalid one as well.
To permit a false affidavit to take the place of a marriage license is to allow an abject
circumvention of the law. If this Court is to protect the fabric of the institution of marriage, we
must be wary of deceptive schemes that violate the legal measures set forth in our laws.
2. Falsity of Affidavit not a mere irregularity
Here, there is no marriage license at all. The falsity of the allegation in the sworn affidavit
relating to the period of Jose and Felisas cohabitation, which would have qualified their
marriage as an exception to the requirement for a marriage license, cannot be a mere
irregularity, for it refers to a quintessential fact that the law precisely required to be deposed and
attested to by the parties under oath. If the essential matter in the sworn affidavit is a lie, then it
is but a mere scrap of paper, without force and effect. Hence, it is as if there was no affidavit at
all.
3. An action for nullity of marriage is imprescriptible
The Republic further avers in its third assignment of error that Jose is deemed estopped from
assailing the legality of his marriage for lack of a marriage license since it took Jose seven years
before he sought the declaration of nullity; hence, estoppel had set in.
This is erroneous. An action for nullity of marriage is imprescriptible. Jose and Felisas marriage
was celebrated sans a marriage license. No other conclusion can be reached except that it is
void ab initio. In this case, the right to impugn a void marriage does not prescribe, and may be
raised any time.

Case No. 10
REINEL ANTHONY B. DE CASTRO, Petitioner, vs. ANNABELLE ASSIDAO-DE
CASTRO, Respondent.
G.R. No. 160172
February 13, 2008
Tinga, J.
FACTS: Petitioner and respondent met and became sweethearts in 1991. They planned
to get married, thus they applied for a marriage license with the Office of the Civil
Registrar of Pasig City in September 1994. They had their first sexual relation sometime
in October 1994, and had regularly engaged in sex thereafter. When the couple went
back to the Office of the Civil Registrar, the marriage license had already expired. Thus,
in order to push through with the plan, in lieu of a marriage license, they executed an
affidavit dated 13 March 1995 stating that they had been living together as husband and
wife for at least five years. The couple got married on the same date. Nevertheless,
after the ceremony, petitioner and respondent went back to their respective homes and
did not live together as husband and wife. Respondent filed a complaint for support
against petitioner before the Regional Trial Court. In her complaint, respondent alleged
that she is married to petitioner and that the latter has failed on his
responsibility/obligation to financially support her as his wife and Reinna Tricia as his
child.
Petitioner denied that he is married to respondent, claiming that their marriage is void
ab initio since the marriage was facilitated by a fake affidavit; and that he was merely
prevailed upon by respondent to sign the marriage contract to save her from
embarrassment and possible administrative prosecution due to her pregnant state; and
that he was not able to get parental advice from his parents before he got married. He
also averred that they never lived together as husband and wife and that he has never
seen nor acknowledged the child. Trial court ruled that the marriage between petitioner
and respondent is not valid because it was solemnized without a marriage license.
However, it declared petitioner as the natural father of the child, and thus obliged to give
her support. Petitioner elevated the case to the Court of Appeals and was denied.

Prompted by the rule that a marriage is presumed to be subsisting until a judicial


declaration of nullity has been made, the appellate court declared that the child was
born during the subsistence and validity of the parties' marriage.
ISSUE: Whether or not their marriage is valid.
HELD: The SC holds that the trial court had jurisdiction to determine the validity of the
marriage between petitioner and respondent. The validity of a void marriage may be
collaterally attacked.
Under the Family Code, the absence of any of the essential or formal requisites shall
render the marriage void ab initio, whereas a defect in any of the essential requisites
shall render the marriage voidable. In the instant case, it is clear from the evidence
presented that petitioner and respondent did not have a marriage license when they
contracted their marriage. Instead, they presented an affidavit stating that they had
been living together for more than five years. However, respondent herself in effect
admitted the falsity of the affidavit when she was asked during cross-examination. The
falsity of the affidavit cannot be considered as a mere irregularity in the formal requisites
of marriage. The law dispenses with the marriage license requirement for a man and a
woman who have lived together and exclusively with each other as husband and wife
for a continuous and unbroken period of at least five years before the marriage. The aim
of this provision is to avoid exposing the parties to humiliation, shame and
embarrassment concomitant with the scandalous cohabitation of persons outside a valid
marriage due to the publication of every applicant's name for a marriage license. In the
instant case, there was no scandalous cohabitation to protect; in fact, there was no
cohabitation at all. The false affidavit which petitioner and respondent executed so they
could push through with the marriage has no value whatsoever; it is a mere scrap of
paper. They were not exempt from the marriage license requirement. Their failure to
obtain and present a marriage license renders their marriage void ab initio.

FC Case No. 11
Santiago v. People
G.R. No. 200233July 15, 2015
FACTS: Leonila Santiago and Nicanor Santos got sued for bigamy by the legal wife, Estela
Galang. Petitioner Santiago argued that for there to be a conviction for bigamy, the second
marriage should be proven valid. In this case, she argued that their marriage was void due to
lack of a marriage license.
ISSUE: WON their marriage was void due to the absence of a marriage license
HELD: No. Their marriage is valid even without a marriage license. The marriage between
Santiago and Santos took place without a marriage license. The absence of the requirement is
explained in their Certificate of Marriage, which reveals that their union was celebrated under
Article 34 of the Family Code.
Article 34 states that no license shall be necessary if the couple have lived together as husband
and wife for at least five years and without any legal impediment to marry each other. It appears
that the two of them lied before the solemnizing officer and misrepresented that they had
actually cohabited for at least five years before they married each other. They fraudulently
secured a Certificate of Marriage and petitioner later used this blatantly to illicit act as basis for
seeking her exculpation.

FC Case No. 12

LOLITA D. ENRICO vs HEIRS OF SPS. EULOGIO B. MEDINACELI


GR NO. 173614
SEPTEMBER 28, 2007

FACTS: On March 17 2005, respondents, heirs filed with the RTC, an action for
declaration of nullity of marriage of Eulogio Medinaceli (deceased) and petitioner Lolita
D. Enrico.

Respondents averred that the marriage between Eulogio and the petitioner was entered
into without the requisite marriage license. They argued that Article 34 of the Family
Code, which exempts a man and a woman who have been living together for at least
five years without any legal impediment from securing a marriage license, was not
applicable to petitioner and Eulogio because they could not have lived together under
the circumstances required by said provision. Respondents said that the marriage of
Eulogio to Trinidad Catli-Medinaceli was dissolved only upon the latter's death on May 1
2004, which was barely three months from the date of marriage of Eulogio to petitioner.
Therefore, petitioner and Eulogio could not have lived together as husband and wife for
at least five years. Respondents likewise raised the additional ground of lack of
marriage ceremony due to Eulogios serious illness which made its performance
impossible.

In her Answer, petitioner said that she and Eulogio lived together as husband and wife
for 21 years openly and publicly; hence, they were exempted from the requirement of a

marriage license. They had 2 children who carried the surname of Eulogio. She
contended that the marriage ceremony was performed in the Municipal Hall of Lal-lo,
Cagayan, and solemnized by the Municipal Mayor.

Petitioner sought the dismissal of the action on the ground that it is only the contracting
parties while living who can file an action for declaration of nullity of marriage.

On October 11 2005, RTC dismissed the Complaint for lack of cause of action. It cited
section 2 par (a) of Administrative Matter No. 02-11-10-SC that a petition for Declaration
of Absolute Nullity of a Void Marriage may be filed solely by the husband or the wife.
Consequently, the heirs of the deceased spouse cannot substitute their late father in
bringing the action to declare the marriage null and void.

Respondents filed a Motion for Reconsideration. RTC reversed its ruling on October 11
2005 and reinstated the complaint saying that it ignored the ruling in Nial vs Bayadong
which is the authority for holding that the heirs of a deceased spouse have the standing
to assail a void marriage even after the death of the latter. It said Section 2(a) of A.M.
No. 02-11-20-SC only applies where both parties to a void marriage are still living.
Where one or both parties are deceased, the RTC held that the heirs may file a petition
to declare the marriage void.

Petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration. However, on 1 June 2006, the RTC denied
the said motion on the ground that no new matter was raised therein. Hence, this
petition.
Issue: whether the Nial ruling, or the Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void
Marriages and Annulment of Voidable Marriages, as specified in A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC
of the Supreme Court applies to the case.
Held: A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC of the Supreme Court applies in the case at bar. The Nial
ruling cannot be applied for the reason that the impugned marriage therein was
solemnized prior to the effectivity of the Family Code. The Court in Nial recognized that
the applicable law to determine the validity of the marriage during that time is the Civil
Code, which was the law in effect at the time of their celebration.
The Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment of
Voidable Marriages as contained in A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC is explicit in its scope, to wit:
Section 1. Scope. This Rule shall govern petitions for declaration of absolute
nullity of void marriages and annulment of voidable marriages under the
Family Code of the Philippines.

Hence, the coverage of A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC extends only to those marriages entered
into during the effectivity of the Family Code which took effect on 3 August 1988.

The marriage of petitioner and Eulogio took effect after the effectivity of the Family
Code. Thus, what should be resorted in this case in esolving such issue is A.M. No. 0211-10-SC which provides that petition for Declaration of Absolute Nullity of a Void
Marriage may be filed solely by the husband or the wife.

However, compulsory or intestate heirs can still question the validity of the marriage of
the spouses, not in a proceeding for declaration of nullity, but upon the death of a
spouse in a proceeding for the settlement of the estate of the deceased spouse filed in
the regular courts.

FC Case No. 13
Carlos v. Sandoval
G.R. No. 179922 Dec. 16, 2008
Facts:
Spouses Felix B. Carlos and Felipa Elemia died intestate. They left six parcels of land
to their compulsory heirs, Teofilo Carlos and petitioner Juan De Dios Carlos. During the lifetime
of Felix Carlos, he agreed to transfer his estate to Teofilo. The agreement was made in order to
avoid the payment of inheritance taxes. Teofilo, in turn, undertook to deliver and turn over the
share of the other legal heir, petitioner Juan De Dios Carlos.
Eventually, the first three (3) parcels of land were transferred and registered in the
name of Teofilo. Parcel No. 4 was registered in the name of petitioner.
On May 13, 1992, Teofilo died intestate. He was survived by respondents: Felicidad
and their son Teofilo Carlos II (Teofilo II). Upon Teofilos death, Parcel Nos. 5 & 6 were registered
in the name of respondent Felicidad and co-respondent, Teofilo II.
In 1994, petitioner instituted a suit against respondents before the RTC in Muntinlupa
City. In the said case, the parties submitted and caused the approval of a partial compromise
agreement. Under the compromise, the parties acknowledged their respective shares in the
proceeds from the sale of a portion of the first parcel of land. This includes the remaining 6,691square-meter portion of said land.
On September 17, 1994, the parties executed a deed of extrajudicial partition, dividing
the remaining land of the first parcel between them. In August 1995, petitioner commenced an
action, docketed as Civil Case No. 95-135, against respondents before the court a quo with the
following causes of action: (a) declaration of nullity of marriage; (b) status of a child; (c) recovery
of property; (d) reconveyance; and (e) sum of money and damages.
In his complaint, petitioner asserted that the marriage between his late brother Teofilo
and respondent Felicidad was a nullity in view of the absence of the required marriage license.
He likewise maintained that his deceased brother was neither the natural nor the adoptive father
of respondent Teofilo Carlos II.

Issues:
1. Whether or not judgment on the pleadings nor summary judgment is allowed in a
proceeding for nullity of marriage
2. Whether or not any person can question the validity of marriage.
Ruling:
1. No. Whether the RTCs decision is based on judgment on the pleadings or summary
judgment, the CA was correct in reversing the summary judgment rendered by the trial court.
Both the rules on judgment on the pleadings and summary judgments have no place in cases of
declaration of absolute nullity of marriage and even in annulment of marriage.
With the advent of A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC, known as Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of
Void Marriages and Annulment of Voidable Marriages, the question on the application of
summary judgments or even judgment on the pleadings in cases of nullity or annulment of
marriage has been stamped with clarity. The significant principle laid down by the said Rule,
which took effect on March 15, 2003 is found in Section 17, viz.:
SEC. 17. Trial. (1) The presiding judge shall personally conduct the trial of the case. No
delegation of evidence to a commissioner shall be allowed except as to matters involving
property relations of the spouses.
(2) The grounds for declaration of absolute nullity or annulment of marriage must
be proved. No judgment on the pleadings, summary judgment, or confession of
judgment shall be allowed.
2. Petitioner commenced the nullity of marriage case against respondent Felicidad in 1995. The
marriage in controversy was celebrated on May 14, 1962. Which law would govern depends
upon when the marriage took place.
The marriage having been solemnized prior to the effectivity of the Family Code, the
applicable law is the Civil Code, which was the law in effect at the time of its celebration. But the
Civil Code is silent as to who may bring an action to declare the marriage void. Does this mean
that any person can bring an action for the declaration of nullity of marriage?
We respond in the negative. The absence of a provision in the Civil Code cannot be construed
as a license for any person to institute a nullity of marriage case. Such person must appear to
be the party who stands to be benefited or injured by the judgment in the suit, or the party
entitled to the avails of the suit. Elsewise stated, plaintiff must be the real party-in-interest. For it
is basic in procedural law that every action must be prosecuted and defended in the name of the
real party-in-interest.
In the case at bench, the records reveal that when Teofilo died intestate in 1992, his only
surviving compulsory heirs are respondent Felicidad and their son, Teofilo II. Under the law on
succession, successional rights are transmitted from the moment of death of the decedent and
the compulsory heirs are called to succeed by operation of law.
Upon Teofilos death in 1992, all his property, rights and obligations to the extent of the value of
the inheritance are transmitted to his compulsory heirs. These heirs were respondents Felicidad
and Teofilo II, as the surviving spouse and child, respectively.

Article 887 of the Civil Code outlined who are compulsory heirs, to wit:
(1) Legitimate children and descendants, with respect to their legitimate parents and
ascendants;
(2) In default of the foregoing, legitimate parents and ascendants, with respect to their legitimate
children and descendants;
(3) The widow or widower;
(4) Acknowledged natural children, and natural children by legal fiction;
(5) Other illegitimate children referred to in Article 287 of the Civil Code
Clearly, a brother is not among those considered as compulsory heirs. But although a collateral
relative, such as a brother, does not fall within the ambit of a compulsory heir, he still has a right
to succeed to the estate. Articles 1001 and 1003 of the New Civil Code provide:
ART. 1001. Should brothers and sisters or their children survive with the widow or
widower, the latter shall be entitled to one-half of the inheritance and the brothers and
sisters or their children to the other half.
ART. 1003. If there are no descendants, ascendants, illegitimate children, or a surviving
spouse, the collateral relatives shall succeed to the entire estate of the deceased in
accordance with the following articles. (Underscoring supplied)
Indeed, only the presence of descendants, ascendants or illegitimate children
excludes collateral relatives from succeeding to the estate of the decedent. The presence of
legitimate, illegitimate, or adopted child or children of the deceased precludes succession by
collateral relatives. Conversely, if there are no descendants, ascendants, illegitimate children, or
a surviving spouse, the collateral relatives shall succeed to the entire estate of the decedent.
If respondent Teofilo II is declared and finally proven not to be the legitimate,
illegitimate, or adopted son of Teofilo, petitioner would then have a personality to seek the nullity
of marriage of his deceased brother with respondent Felicidad. This is so, considering that
collateral relatives, like a brother and sister, acquire successional right over the estate if the
decedent dies without issue and without ascendants in the direct line.
The records reveal that Teofilo was predeceased by his parents. He had no other
siblings but petitioner. Thus, if Teofilo II is finally found and proven to be not a legitimate,
illegitimate, or adopted son of Teofilo, petitioner succeeds to the other half of the estate of his
brother, the first half being allotted to the widow pursuant to Article 1001 of the New Civil Code.
This makes petitioner a real-party-interest to seek the declaration of absolute nullity of marriage
of his deceased brother with respondent Felicidad. If the subject marriage is found to be void ab
initio, petitioner succeeds to the entire estate.
It bears stressing, however, that the legal personality of petitioner to bring the nullity of marriage
case is contingent upon the final declaration that Teofilo II is not a legitimate, adopted, or
illegitimate son of Teofilo.

FC Case No. 13
G.R. No. 179922
December 16, 2008
JUAN DE DIOS CARLOS, petitioner,
versus
FELICIDAD SANDOVAL, also known as
FELICIDAD S. VDA. DE CARLOS or FELICIDAD SANDOVAL CARLOS or FELICIDAD
SANDOVAL VDA. DE CARLOS, and TEOFILO CARLOS II, respondents.
Spouses Carlos (Felix and Felipa) died intestate. They left properties to their compulsory
heirs Teofilo and petitioner Juan. Thereafter, following the demise of Teofilo, who also died
intestate, he was survived and his properties were left to Felicidad and Teofilo II.
On the basis of these circumstances, petitioner Juan filed before the RTC the following
proceedings:
1. Declaration of nullity of marriage, on the ground that the marriage between respondent
Felicidad and his late brother Teofilo was not supported by the required marriage
license.
2. Status of the child, on the basis that Teofilo II was neither natural nor adoptive son of his
late brother
3. Recovery of property, reconveyance and sum of money and damages.
The Regional Trial Court declared the marriage between Felicidad and Teofilo viod ab initio for
lack of marriage license. When elevated to the Court of appeals, the decision was reversed
considering that while a marriage license is a formal requisite and the absence thereof renders it
void, it is not rendered fatal as it may be corroborated by other evidence. In this case, the
testimony of the solemnizing officer.
ISSUE:
RULING:

Whether

petitioner

has

locus

standi

to

assail

the

validity

of

marriage

The records was remanded to the lower court in order to determine whether petitioner is
a real party in interest.
The petition for declaration for absolute nullity of void marriage may be filed solely by the
husband or wife unless the nullity of marriage cases commenced before the effectivity of A.M.
No. 02-11-10-SC and in case of marriages celebrated during the effectivity of the Civil Code.
The marriage having been solemnized prior to the effectivity of the Family Code, the
Civil Code applies as it was the law in effect at the time of its celebration.
Thus, the absence of a provision in the Civil Code cannot be construed as a license for
any person to institute a nullity of marriage case. Such person must appear to be the party who
stands to be benefited or injured by the judgment in the suit, or the party entitled to the avails of
the suit. Otherwise, plaintiff must be the real party-in-interest. For it is basic in procedural law
that every action must be prosecuted and defended in the name of the real party-in-interest.

FC CASE NO. 14
ISIDRO ABLAZA VS REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES
G.R. No. 158298 August 11, 2010
BERSAMIN, J
FACTS:
Isidro Ablaza filed a petition for declaration of the absolute nullity of the marriage
contracted on December 26, 1949 between his late brother Cresenciano Ablaza and Leonila
Honato. Isidro alleged that the marriage had been celebrated without a marriage license due to
such license being issued only on January 9, 1950, thereby rendering the marriage void ab initio
for having been solemnized without a marriage license. He also alleges that as the surviving
brother of Cresenciano, he is entitle to onehalf of the real properties acquired by Cresenciano
before his death, thereby making him a real party in interest.
RTC dismissed the case stating that petition is filed out of time and petitioner is not a
party to the marriage. CA affirmed said decision. Hence this case.
ISSUE: Whether or not petitioner is a real party in interest in the action to seek the declaration
of nullity of the marriage of his deceased brother?
COURTS RULING:
Yes. Considering that the marriage between Cresenciano and Leonila was contracted on
December 26, 1949, the applicable law was the old Civil Code, the law in effect at the time of
the celebration of the marriage. The old and new Civil Codes contain no provision on who can
file a petition to declare the nullity of a marriage. However, the absence of the provision cannot
be construed as giving a license to just any person to bring an action to declare the absolute
nullity of a marriage. The plaintiff must still be the party who stands to be benefited by the suit,

or the party entitled to the avails of the suit, for it is basic in procedural law that every action
must be prosecuted and defended in the name of the real party in interest.
In the instant case, petitioner alleged himself to be the late Cresencianos brother and
surviving heir. Assuming that the petitioner was he claimed himself to be, then he has a material
interest in the estate of Cresenciano that will be adversely affected by any judgment in the suit.
However, the right of petitioner to bring the action hinges upon a prior determination of whether
Cresenciano had any descendants, ascendants, or children. Such prior determination must be
made by the trial court, for the inquiry thereon involves questions of fact.

FC Case no. 15

Am-02-11-10-SC
Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment of
Voidable Marriages
G.R. No. 186400

October 20, 2010

CYNTHIA S. BOLOS, Petitioner,


vs.
DANILO T. BOLOS, Respondent.

Facts:
Petitioner Cynthia Bolos (Cynthia) filed a petition for the declaration of nullity
of her marriage to respondent Danilo Bolos (Danilo) under Article 36 of the
Family Code.
After trial on the merits, the RTC granted the petition for annulment with the
following disposition:
WHEREFORE, judgment is hereby rendered declaring the marriage between
petitioner CYNTHIA S. BOLOS and respondent DANILO T. BOLOS celebrated on
February 14, 1980 as null and void ab initio on the ground of psychological
incapacity on the part of both petitioner and respondent under Article 36 of
the Family Code with all the legal consequences provided by law.

Upon receipt of the decision, danilo filed his notice of appeal before the RTC.
the RTC denied due course to the appeal for Danilos failure to file the
required motion for reconsideration or new trial, in violation of Section 20 of
the Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment
of Voidable Marriages. The motion for reconsideration was likewise denied.
Danilo filed a petition for certiorari under rule 65. The CA granted the petition
and reversed and set aside the assailed orders of the RTC. The appellate
court stated that the requirement of a motion for reconsideration as a
prerequisite to appeal under A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC did not apply in this case
as the marriage between Cynthia and Danilo was solemnized on February 14,
1980 before the Family Code took effect. It relied on the ruling of this Court
in Enrico v. Heirs of Sps. Medinaceli3 to the effect that the "coverage [of A.M.
No. 02-11-10-SC] extends only to those marriages entered into during the
effectivity of the Family Code which took effect on August 3, 1988."
Issue:
whether or not A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC entitled "Rule on Declaration of
Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment of Voidable Marriages," is
applicable to the case at bench.
Held:
No.
The Rule on Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and Annulment
of Voidable Marriages as contained in A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC which the Court
promulgated on March 15, 2003, is explicit in its scope. Section 1 of the Rule,
in fact, reads:
Section 1. Scope This Rule shall govern petitions for declaration of absolute
nullity of void marriages and annulment of voidable marriages under the
Family Code of the Philippines.
The Rules of Court shall apply suppletorily.
The categorical language of A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC leaves no room for doubt.
The coverage extends only to those marriages entered into during the
effectivity of the Family Code which took effect on August 3, 1988. The rule
sets a demarcation line between marriages covered by the Family Code and
those solemnized under the Civil Code.

FC Case No. 16

ESTRELLITA JULIANO-LLAVE v. REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES


G.R. No. 169766, March 30, 2011

Del Castillo, J.:

FACTS: Around 11 months before his death, Sen. Tamanomarried Estrellita twice initially
under the Islamic laws and tradition on May 27, 1993 in Cotabato City and, subsequently, under
a civil ceremony officiated by an RTC Judge at Malabang, Lanao del Sur on June 2, 1993. In
their marriage contracts, Sen. Tamano s civil status was indicated as divorced. Since then,
Estrellita has been representing herself to the whole world as Sen. Tamano s wife, and upon his
death, his widow.

On November 23, 1994, private respondents Haja Putri Zorayda A. Tamano (Zorayda) and her
son Adib Ahmad A. Tamano (Adib), in their own behalf and in behalf of the rest of Sen. Tamano
s legitimate children with Zorayda, filed a complaint with the RTC of Quezon City for the
declaration of nullity of marriage between Estrellita and Sen. Tamano for being bigamous. The
complaint alleged that Sen. Tamano married Zorayda on May 31, 1958 under civil rites, and that
this marriage remained subsisting when he married Estrellita in 1993.

Estrellitas argument is that her marriage with the late senator is valid as the latter was already
divorced under the Muslim Code at the time he married her. She asserts that such law
automatically applies to the marriage of Zorayda and the deceased without need of registering
their consent to be covered by it, as both parties are Muslims whose marriage was solemnized
under Muslim law.

Both the RTC and the CA declared such marriage bigamous and as such, void ab initio.

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

HELD: Yes. The civil code governs the marriage of Zorayda and the late Sen. Tamano. Their
marriage was never invalidated by P.D. 1083. Sen. Tamanos subsequent marriage to Estrellita
is void ab initio.

The marriage between the late Sen. Tamano and Zorayda was celebrated in 1958, solemnized
under civil and Muslim rites. The only law in force governing marriage relationships between
Muslims and non-Muslims alike was the Civil Code of 1950, under the provisions of which only
one marriage can exist at any given time. Under the marriage provisions of the Civil Code,
divorce is not recognized except during the effectivity of Republic Act No. 394 which was not
availed of during its effectivity.

As far as Estrellita is concerned, Sen. Tamanos prior marriage to Zorayda has been severed by
way of divorce under PD 1083, the law that codified Muslim personal laws. However, PD 1083
cannot benefit Estrellita. Firstly, Article 13(1) thereof provides that the law applies to marriage
and divorce wherein both parties are Muslims, or wherein only the male party is a Muslim and
the marriage is solemnized in accordance with Muslim law or this Code in any part of the
Philippines. But Article 13 of PD 1083 does not provide for a situation where the parties were
married both in civil and Muslim rites.

A marriage contracted by a Muslim male prior to the effectivity of this Code in accordance with
non-Muslim law shall be considered as one contracted under Muslim law provided the spouses
register their mutual desire to this effect.

Even granting that there was registration of mutual consent for the marriage to be considered as
one contracted under the Muslim law, the registration of mutual consent between Zorayda and
Sen. Tamano will still be ineffective, as both are Muslims whose marriage was celebrated under
both civil and Muslim laws. Besides, as we have already settled, the Civil Code governs their
personal status since this was in effect at the time of the celebration of their marriage. In view of
Sen. Tamanos prior marriage which subsisted at the time Estrellita married him, their
subsequent marriage is correctly adjudged by the CA as void ab initio.

FC Case No. 17
Abbas v. Abbas
The certification of the Local Civil Registrar that their office had no record of a marriage
license was adequate to prove the non-issuance of said license. Article 35(3) of the
Family Code also provides that a marriage solemnized without a license is void from the
beginning, except those exempt from the license requirement under Articles 27 to 34,
Chapter 2, Title I of the same Code.
Facts:
The present case stems from a petition filed by petitioner Syed Azhar Abbas (Syed) for
the declaration of nullity of his marriage to Gloria Goo-Abbas (Gloria) with the RTC of
Pasay City, docketed as Civil Case No. 03-0382-CFM, and raffled to RTC Branch 109.
Syed alleged the absence of a marriage license, as provided for in Article 4, Chapter I,
Title 1 of Executive Order No. 269, otherwise known as the Family Code of the
Philippines, as a ground for the annulment of his marriage to Gloria.
In the Marriage Contract of Gloria and Syed, it is stated that Marriage License No.
9969967, issued at Carmona, Cavite on January 8, 1993, was presented to the
solemnizing officer.

At the trial court, Syed, a Pakistani citizen, testified that he met Gloria, a Filipino citizen,
in Taiwan in 1991, and they were married on August 9, 1992 at the Taipei Mosque in
Taiwan. He arrived in the Philippines in December of 1992. On January 9, 1993, at
around 5 oclock in the afternoon, he was at his mother-in-laws residence, located at
2676 F. Muoz St., Malate, Manila, when his mother-in-law arrived with two men. He
testified that he was told that he was going to undergo some ceremony, one of the
requirements for his stay in the Philippines, but was not told of the nature of said
ceremony. During the ceremony he and Gloria signed a document.
He claimed that he did not know that the ceremony was a marriage until Gloria told him
later. He further testified that he did not go to Carmona, Cavite to apply for a marriage
license, and that he had never resided in that area.
In July of 2003, he went to the Office of the Civil Registrar of Carmona, Cavite, to check
on their marriage license, and was asked to show a copy of their marriage contract
wherein the marriage license number could be found. The Municipal Civil Registrar,
Leodivinia C. Encarnacion, issued a certification on July 11, 2003 to the effect that the
marriage license number appearing in the marriage contract he submitted, Marriage
License No. 9969967, was the number of another marriage license issued to a certain
Arlindo Getalado and Myra Mabilangan.
Petitioner also presented Norberto Bagsic (Bagsic), an employee of the Municipal Civil
Registrar of Carmona, Cavite. Bagsic appeared under a letter of authority from the
Municipal Civil Registrar of Carmona, Cavite, and brought documents pertaining to
Marriage License No. 9969967, which was issued to Arlindo Getalado and Myra
Mabilangan on January 20, 1993. Bagsic testified that their office issues serial numbers
for marriage licenses and that the numbers are issued chronologically. He testified that
the certification dated July 11, 2003, was issued and signed by Leodivina Encarnacion,
Registrar of the Municipality of Carmona, Cavite, certifying that Marriage License No.
9969967 was issued for Arlindo Getalado and Myra Mabilangan on January 19, 1993,
and that their office had not issued any other license of the same serial number, namely
9969967, to any other person.
For her part, Gloria testified on her own behalf, and presented Reverend Mario Dauz,
Atty. Lorenzo Sanchez, Felicitas Goo and May Ann Ceriola
Reverend Mario Dauz: testified that he was a minister of the Gospel and a barangay
captain, and that he is authorized to solemnize marriages within the Philippines. He
testified that he solemnized the marriage of Syed Azhar Abbas and Gloria Goo at the
residence of the bride on January 9, 1993. He stated that the witnesses were Atty.
Lorenzo Sanchez (Atty. Sanchez) and Mary Ann Ceriola. He testified that he had been
solemnizing marriages since 1982, and that he is familiar with the requirements. Rev.
Dauz further testified that Atty. Sanchez gave him the marriage license the day before
the actual wedding, and that the marriage contract was prepared by his secretary. After
the solemnization of the marriage, it was registered with the Local Civil Registrar of
Manila, and Rev. Dauz submitted the marriage contract and copy of the marriage
license with that office.

Atty. Sanchez: testified that he was asked to be the sponsor of the wedding of Syed
Abbas and Gloria Goo by the mother of the bride, Felicitas Goo. He testified that he
requested a certain Qualin to secure the marriage license for the couple, and that this
Qualin secured the license and gave the same to him on January 8, 1993. He further
testified that he did not know where the marriage license was obtained. He attended the
wedding ceremony on January 9, 1993, signed the marriage contract as sponsor, and
witnessed the signing of the marriage contract by the couple, the solemnizing officer
and the other witness, Mary Ann Ceriola.
Felicitas Goo: testified that Gloria Goo is her daughter and Syed Azhar Abbas is her
son-in-law, and that she was present at the wedding ceremony held on January 9, 1993
at her house. She testified that she sought the help of Atty. Sanchez at the Manila City
Hall in securing the marriage license, and that a week before the marriage was to take
place, a male person went to their house with the application for marriage
license. Three days later, the same person went back to their house, showed her the
marriage license before returning it to Atty. Sanchez who then gave it to Rev. Dauz, the
solemnizing officer. She further testified that she did not read all of the contents of the
marriage license, and that she was told that the marriage license was obtained from
Carmona. She also testified that a bigamy case had been filed by Gloria against Syed at
the Regional Trial Court of Manila, evidenced by an information for Bigamy dated
January 10, 2003, pending before Branch 47 of the Regional Trial Court of Manila.
Mary Ann Ceriola: she is one of the sponsors at the wedding of Gloria Goo and Syed
Abbas on January 9, 1993; she was seen in the wedding photos and she could identify
all the persons depicted in said photos; and her testimony corroborates that of Felicitas
Goo and Atty. Sanchez.
RTC: held that no valid marriage license was issued by the Municipal Civil Registrar of
Carmona, Cavite in favor of Gloria and Syed, as Marriage License No. 9969967 had
been issued to Arlindo Getalado and Myra Mabilangan, and the Municipal Civil Registrar
of Carmona, Cavite had certified that no marriage license had been issued for Gloria
and Syed. It also took into account the fact that neither party was a resident of
Carmona, Cavite, the place where Marriage License No. 9969967 was issued, in
violation of Article 9 of the Family Code. As the marriage was not one of those exempt
from the license requirement, and that the lack of a valid marriage license is an absence
of a formal requisite, the marriage of Gloria and Syed on January 9, 1993 was void
ab initio.
CA: gave credence to Glorias arguments, and granted her appeal. It held that the
certification of the Municipal Civil Registrar failed to categorically state that a diligent
search for the marriage license of Gloria and Syed was conducted, and thus held that
said certification could not be accorded probative value. Ruled that there was
sufficient testimonial and documentary evidence that Gloria and Syed had been
validly married and that there was compliance with all the requisites laid down by
law. It gave weight to the fact that Syed had admitted to having signed the marriage
contract. The CA also considered that the parties had comported themselves as
husband and wife, and that Syed only instituted his petition after Gloria had filed a case
against him for bigamy.

Issue:
Whether or not a valid Marriage License had been issued for the couple
Held:
No, Respondent Gloria failed to present the actual marriage license, or a copy thereof,
and relied on the marriage contract as well as the testimonies of her witnesses to prove
the existence of said license
It is telling that Gloria failed to present their marriage license or a copy thereof to the
court. She failed to explain why the marriage license was secured in Carmona, Cavite, a
location where, admittedly, neither party resided. She took no pains to apply for the
license, so she is not the best witness to testify to the validity and existence of said
license. Neither could the other witnesses she presented prove the existence of the
marriage license, as none of them applied for the license in Carmona, Cavite. Her
mother, Felicitas Goo, could not even testify as to the contents of the license, having
admitted to not reading all of its contents. Atty. Sanchez, one of the sponsors, whom
Gloria and Felicitas Goo approached for assistance in securing the license, admitted not
knowing where the license came from. The task of applying for the license was
delegated to a certain Qualin, who could have testified as to how the license was
secured and thus impeached the certification of the Municipal Civil Registrar as well as
the testimony of her representative. As Gloria failed to present this Qualin, the
certification of the Municipal Civil Registrar still enjoys probative value.
It is also noted that the solemnizing officer testified that the marriage contract and a
copy of the marriage license were submitted to the Local Civil Registrar of Manila. Thus,
a copy of the marriage license could have simply been secured from that office and
submitted to the court. However, Gloria inexplicably failed to do so, further weakening
her claim that there was a valid marriage license issued for her and Syed.
Gloria has failed to discharge that burden, and the only conclusion that can be reached
is that no valid marriage license was issued. It cannot be said that there was a simple
irregularity in the marriage license that would not affect the validity of the marriage, as
no license was presented by the respondent. No marriage license was proven to have
been issued to Gloria and Syed, based on the certification of the Municipal Civil
Registrar of Carmona, Cavite and Glorias failure to produce a copy of the alleged
marriage license.
The Marriage cannot be characterized as among the exemptions, and thus, having
been solemnized without a marriage license, is void ab initio.

G.R. No. 164493

March 10, 2010

JOCELYN M. SUAZO, Petitioner,


vs.
ANGELITO SUAZO and REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondents.
FACTS:
Angelito Suazo and Jocelyn Suazo were married when they were 16 years old only.
Without any means to support themselves, they lived with Angelitos parents while
Jocelyn took odd jobs and Angelito refused to work and was most of the time drunk.
Petitioner urged him to find work but this often resulted to violent quarrels. A year
after their marriage, Jocelyn left Angelito, Angelito thereafter found another woman
with whom he has since lived. 10 years later, she filed a petition for declaration of
nullity of marriage under Art. 36 Psychological incapacity. Jocelyn testified on the
alleged physical beating she received. The expert witness corroborated parts of
Jocelyns testimony. Both her psychological report and testimony concluded that
Angelito was psychologically incapacitated. However, B was not personally
examined by the expert witness. The RTC annulled the marriage on the ground that

Angelito is unfit to comply with his marital obligation, such as immaturity, i.e., lack
of an effective sense of rational judgment and responsibility, otherwise peculiar to
infants (like refusal of the husband to support the family or excessive dependence
on parents or peer group approval) and habitual alcoholism, or the condition by
which a person lives for the next drink and the next drinks but the CA reversed it
and held that the respondent may have failed to provide material support to the
family and has resorted to physical abuse, but it is still necessary to show that they
were manifestations of a deeper psychological malaise that was clinically or
medically identified. The theory of the psychologist that the respondent was
suffering from an anti-social personality syndrome at the time of the marriage was
not the product of any adequate medical or clinical investigation. The evidence that
she got from the petitioner, anecdotal at best, could equally show that the behavior
of the respondent was due simply to causes like immaturity or irresponsibility which
are not equivalent to psychological incapacity, or the failure or refusal to work could
have been the result of rebelliousness on the part of one who felt that he had been
forced into a loveless marriage.

ISSUE:
Whether or not there is a basis to nullify Jocelyns marriage with Angelito under
Article 36 of the Family Code.

HELD:
The Court find the petition devoid of merit. The CA committed no reversible error of
law in setting aside the RTC decision, as no basis exists to declare Jocelyns
marriage with Angelito a nullity under Article 36 of the Family Code and its related
jurisprudence.
Jocelyns evidence is insufficient to establish Angelitos psychological incapacity. The
psychologist evaluated Angelitos psychological condition only in an indirect manner
she derived all her conclusions from information coming from Jocelyn whose bias
for her cause cannot of course be doubted. The psychlologist, using meager
information coming from a directly interested party, could not have secured a
complete personality profile and could not have conclusively formed an objective
opinion or diagnosis of Angelitos psychological condition. While the report or
evaluation may be conclusive with respect to Jocelyns psychological condition, this
is not true for Angelitos. The methodology employed simply cannot satisfy the
required depth and comprehensiveness of examination required to evaluate a party
alleged to be suffering from a psychological disorder. Both the psychologists report
and testimony simply provided a general description of Angelitos purported antisocial personality disorder, supported by the characterization of this disorder as
chronic, grave and incurable. The psychologist was conspicuously silent, however,
on the bases for her conclusion or the particulars that gave rise to the
characterization she gave. Jurisprudence holds that there must be evidence showing

a link, medical or the like, between the acts that manifest psychological incapacity
and the psychological disorder itself. As testimony regarding the habitual
drunkenness, gambling and refusal to find a job, while indicative of psychological
incapacity, do not, by themselves, show psychological incapacity. All these simply
indicate difficulty, neglect or mere refusal to perform marital obligations.
It is not enough that the respondent, alleged to be psychologically incapacitated,
had difficulty in complying with his marital obligations, or was unwilling to perform
these obligations. Proof of a natal or supervening disabling factor an adverse
integral element in the respondents personality structure that effectively
incapacitated him from complying with his essential marital obligations must be
shown. Mere difficulty, refusal or neglect in the performance of marital obligations
or ill will on the part of the spouse is different from incapacity rooted in some
debilitating psychological condition or illness; irreconcilable differences, sexual
infidelity or perversion, emotional immaturity and irresponsibility and the like, do
not by themselves warrant a finding of psychological incapacity under Article 36, as
the same may only be due to a persons refusal or unwillingness to assume the
essential obligations of marriage.

Case No. 19
Topic:Psychological incapacity(Art. 36 of the Family Code)
Agraviador vs. Agraviador
G.R. No. 170729, December 8, 2010
Justice Brion
Third Division

Facts:
Enrique A. Agraviadormet Erlinda A. Agraviador in 1971, he was a security guard then and a she
worked at a beerhouse. They contracted marriage in 1973 and were blessed with four children.
However, in 2001 Enrique filed with the RTC a petition for the declaration of nullity of their
marriage under Art. 36 of the Family Code citing psychological incapacity to exercise the
essential obligations of marriage on the part of Erlinda, as she was irresponsible, carefree,
refuses to do household chores, stay away from their house for long period of time, had an affair
with a lesbian, did not care for their sick child, consulted a witch doctor to bring him bad faith
and refuses to use the family name Agraviador in her activities. He also claimed that she
refuses to have marital act with him because she became close with a male bolder and discover
their love notes to each other and caught them inside his room several times.
Erlinda moved to dismiss the petition on the ground that the root cause of her psychological
incapacity was not medically identified and alleged in the petition. She also denied having extra
marital affairs and maintain that it was Enrique who refuse to do marital act with her and that He
wanted to have their marriage annulled inorder to marry their former household helper
Enrique presented testimonial and documentary evidence to substantiate his claims through the
psychiatric evaluation report of Dr. Juan Cirilo Patac. RTC nullified the marriage finding merit on
in Enriques testimony and Dr. Patacs psychiatric evaluation report.
Court of appeals reversed the RTCs decision and find that Dr. Patacs psychiatric evaluation
report failed to establish that the respondents personality disorder was serious, grave and
permanent and that no proof of a natal or supervening factor that effectively incapacitated
Erlinda from accepting and complying with the essential obligations of marriage.
Issue:
Whether or not there is basis to nullify the petitioners marriage to the respondent on the ground
of psychological incapacity to comply with the essential marital obligations
Ruling:
No. The totality of evidence presented failed to establish the respondents psychological
incapacity.
Petitioners testimony failed to establish that the respondents condition is a manifestation of a
disordered personality rooted on some incapacitating or debilitating psychological condition that
makes her completely unable to discharge the essential marital obligations. Petitioner merely
showed that the respondent had some personality defects that showed their manifestation
during the marriage; his testimony sorely lacked details necessary to establish that the
respondents condition; neither did he mention that the respondents malady was incurable, or if
it were otherwise, the cure would be beyond the respondents means to undertake. The
petitioners declarations that the respondent does not accept her fault, does not want to
change, and refused to reform are insufficient to establish a psychological or mental defect
that is serious, grave or incurable as contemplated by Article 36 of the Family Code.
The court also finds that Dr. Patacs Psychiatric Evaluation Report fell short in proving that the
respondent was psychologically incapacitated to perform the essential marital duties. Dr. Patac

did not personally evaluate and examine the respondent; he relied only on the information fed
by the petitioner, the parties second child, and household helper. Thus, while his Report can be
used as a fair gauge to assess the petitioners own psychological condition, the same statement
cannot be made with respect to the respondents condition. The methodology employed simply
cannot satisfy the required depth and comprehensiveness of the examination required to
evaluate a party alleged to be suffering from a psychological disorder.

FC Case No. 20

Ngo Teh v. Yu The


579 SCRA 193

Facts

Petitioner Edward Te first met respondent Rowena Te eloped. Due to severe marital problems
Edward filed 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.

HELD: Yes.. 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 incapacity. 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.

BENJAMIN G. TING,
Petitioner,
- versus CARMEN M. VELEZ-TING,
Respondent.
G.R. No. 166562
March 31, 2009

Facts:
Benjamin Ting and Carmen Velez-Ting first met in 1972 while they were classmates in medical
school. They fell in love, and they were wed on July 26, 1975 in Cebu City when respondent
was already pregnant with their first child. On October 21, 1993, after being married for more
than 18 years to petitioner and while their youngest child was only two years old, Carmen filed a
verified petition before the RTC of Cebu City praying for the declaration of nullity of their
marriage based on Article 36 of the Family Code. She claimed that Benjamin suffered from
psychological incapacity even at the time of the celebration of their marriage, which, however,
only became manifest thereafter.
Carmens allegations of Benjamins psychological incapacity consisted of the following
manifestations:
1. Benjamins alcoholism, which adversely affected his family relationship and his profession;
2. Benjamins violent nature brought about by his excessive and regular drinking;
3. His compulsive gambling habit, as a result of which Benjamin found it necessary to sell the
family car twice and the property he inherited from his father in order to pay off his debts,
because he no longer had money to pay the same; and
4. Benjamins irresponsibility and immaturity as shown by his failure and refusal to give regular
financial support to his family.
In his answer, Benjamin denied being psychologically incapacitated. He maintained that he is a
respectable person, as his peers would confirm. He also pointed out that it was he who often
comforted and took care of their children, while Carmen played mahjong with her friends twice a
week. Both presented expert witnesses (psychiatrist) to refute each others claim. RTC ruled in
favor of the respondent declaring the marriage null and void.
Petitioner appealed to the CA. CA reversed RTCs decision. Respondent filed a motion for
reconsideration, arguing that the Molina guidelines should not be applied to this case

Issues:
1. Whether the CA violated the rule on stare decisis when it refused to follow the guidelines set
forth under the Santos and Molina cases,
2. Whether or not the CA correctly ruled that the requirement of proof of psychological
incapacity for the declaration of absolute nullity of marriage based on Article 36 of the Family
Code has been liberalized,
3. Whether the CAs decision declaring the marriage between petitioner and respondent null and
void is in accordance with law and jurisprudence.
Held:
1. No. respondents argument that the doctrinal guidelines prescribed in Santos and Molina
should not be applied retroactively for being contrary to the principle of stare decisis is no longer
new.

2. The Case involving the application of Article 36 must be treated distinctly and judged not on
the basis of a priori assumptions, predilections or generalizations but according to its own
attendant facts. Courts should interpret the provision on a case-to-case basis, guided by
experience, the findings of experts and researchers in psychological disciplines, and by
decisions of church tribunals.
3. There is no evidence that adduced by respondent insufficient to prove that petitioner is
psychologically unfit to discharge the duties expected of him as a husband, and more
particularly, that he suffered from such psychological incapacity as of the date of the marriage
eighteen (18) years ago.

Case No. 22 (Psychological Incapacity)


REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, Petitioner, vs. NORMA CUISON-MELGAR, Respondents.
G.R. No. 139676 March 31, 2006
FACTS: Norma and Eulogio Melgar were married on March 27, 1965. On August 19, 1996, Norma
filed for declaration of nullity of her marriage on the ground of Eulogios psychological incapacity to
comply with his essential marital obligations. According to Norma, the manifestations of Eulogios
psychological incapacity are his immaturity, habitual alcoholism, unbearable jealousy, maltreatment,

constitutional laziness, and abandonment of his family since December 27, 1985. After Eulogio failed
to enter an appearance, the prosecutor conducted an investigation to determine whether or not there
is collusion between the parties. To prove her claim, Norma testified that since the birth of their
firstborn, Eulogio has been a habitual alcoholic; when he is drunk he (a) sometimes sleeps on the
streets, (b) every so often, he goes to her office, utters unwholesome remarks against her and drags
her home, (c) he usually lays a hand on her, (d) he often scolds their children without justifiable
reason; his liquor drinking habit has brought shame and embarrassment on their family; when she
would refuse to give him money for his compulsive drinking habit, he would beat her up and threaten
her; he has not been employed since he was dismissed from work and he refuses to look for a job;
she has been the one supporting the family, providing for the education and the basic needs of their
children out of her salary as a government employee; on December 27, 1985, because of
unbearable jealousy to her male officemates, Eulogio went to her office, dragged her home and then
beat her up; her brothers saw this, came to her rescue and then told Eulogio to get out of the house;
and since then, Eulogio has not visited or communicated with his family such that reconciliation is
very unlikely.
The RTC granted the petition. Upon appeal, the CA affirmed the Trial Courts decision. On the
petition for review on certiorari, the OSG contended that that the law does not contemplate mere
inability to perform the essential marital obligations as equivalent to or evidence of psychological
incapacity under Article 36 of the Family Code - that such inability must be due to causes that are
psychological in nature. It further contended that Normas evidence fell short of the requirements of
the law since no competent evidence was presented during the trial to prove that Eulogios inability
to look for a job, his resulting drunkenness, jealousy and other disagreeable behavior are
manifestations of psychological incapacity under Article 36.
ISSUE: Whether or not the alleged psychological incapacity of Eulogio is in the nature contemplated
bt Article 36 of the Family Code.
HELD: NO. The Supreme Court ruled that the totality of evidence presented is completely insufficient
to sustain a finding that Eulogio is psychologically incapacitated. Citing the cases of Republic vs.
Molina (Guidelines for interpretation and application of Article 36) and Marcos vs. Marcos
(psychological exam not required), Norma failed to establish the fact that at the time they were
married, Eulogio was already suffering from a psychological defect which in fact deprived him of the
ability to assume the essential duties of marriage and its concomitant responsibilities. In fact, Norma
admitted in her testimony that her marital woes and Eulogios disagreeable behavior started only
after the birth of their firstborn and when Eulogio lost his job. Respondent failed to prove that Eulogio
was really incapable of fulfilling his duties due to some incapacity of a psychological nature, and not
merely physical. The Court further explained that the psychological defect cannot be presumed from
the mere fact of Eulogios immaturity, habitual alcoholism, unbearable jealousy, maltreatment,
constitutional laziness, and abandonment of his family.

FC Case No. 23
Gen Topic: Psychological Incapacity

Ricardo P. Toring vs Teresita M. Toring and Republic of the Philippines


August 3, 2010

BRION, J.
THIRD DIVISION
Facts:
Ricardo met Teresita in 1978 at his aunts house in Cebu. Teresita used to teach Hawaiian
dance lessons to Ricardos cousin. Ricardo found Teresita attractive despite her being older by
5 years so he pursued her until they became sweethearts after 3 months of courtship. They
eloped and got married on September 4, 1978 before Hon. Remigio Zari of the City Court of
Quezon City. They begot 3 children named Richardson, Rachel Anne, and Ric Jayson.
On February 1, 1999 Ricardo filed for a petition for annulment before the RTC. He claimed that
Teresita was psychologically incapacitated to comply with the essential obligations of their
marriage prior to, at the time of, and subsequent to the celebration of their marriage. At trial,
Ricardo offered their marriage contract, psychological evaluation and signature of his expert
witness, Dr Cecilia R Albaran, and his and Dr Albarans testimonies. Teresita did not file any
answer or opposition to the petition, nor did she testify to refute the allegations against her.
Ricardo alleged that Teresita was an adulteress and a squanderer. He was an overseas seaman
and would regularly send money to cover family expenses and tuition fees however whenever
Ricardo comes home he would be welcomed by the debts incurred by his wife and the utility
bills and tuition unpaid. Teresita also failed to remit the amounts she collected as a sales agent
for a plasticware company.
Ricardo likewise accused Teresita on infidelity and suspected that she was pregnant with
another mans child. During one of his visits to the country he noticed that her stomach was
slightly bigger, he asked her to have a medical exam but she refused. She had a miscarriage 5
months into her pregnancy. Ricardo opined that his wife was a materialistic, controlling and
demanding person.
Dr Albaran testified that Teresita has Narcissistic Personality Disorder that rendered her
psychologically incapacitated to fulfill her marital obligations. She based her diagnosis on the
information she gathered from her psychological evaluation from the children. She personally
sent a notice to Teresita to conduct a psychiatric evaluation but she ignored it.

In opposition, the OSG contended that there was no basis to declare Teresita psychologically
incapacitated. It asserted that the evaluation conducted on the children only revealed a vague
and general conclusion on these parties traits but not on Teresitas psychological makeup. The
OSG also argued that the evidence did not clinically identify and prove the medical cause of the
alleged psychological incapacity.
The RTC annulled his marriage to Teresita and found Teresita to be psychologically
incapacitated to assume the essential obligations of marriage. The OSG appealed to the CA.
The CA reversed the RTC decision and held that the trial court did not specify that the root
illness or defect that cause Teresitas psychological incapacity and likewise failtes to show that
the incapacity existed at the time of celebration of marriage.
Ruling:
The SC found the petition unmeritorious, as the CA committed no reversible error when it set
aside the RTCs decision for lack of legal and factual basis. In Santos vs CA the SC stated that:
Psychological incapacity under Article 36 of the Family Code must be characterized by (a)
gravity, (b) juridical antecedence, and (c) incurability, to be sufficient basis to annul a marriage.
The psychological incapacity should refer to no less than a mental (not physical) incapacity that
causes a party to be truly incognitive of the basic marital covenants that concomitantly must be
assumed and discharged by the parties to the marriage.
Also the guidelines in the interpretation and application of Art 36 of the Family Code was laid
down in Republic vs CA and Molina. These guidelines incorporate the basic requirements of
gravity, juridical antecedence and incurability established in the Santos case, as follows: (1) The
burden of proof to show the nullity of the marriage belongs to the plaintiff. Any doubt should be
resolved in favor of the existence and continuation of the marriage and against its dissolution
and nullity. This is rooted in the fact that both our Constitution and our laws cherish the validity
of marriage and unity of the family. Thus, our Constitution devotes an entire Article on the
Family, recognizing it "as the foundation of the nation." It decrees marriage as legally
"inviolable," thereby protecting it from dissolution at the whim of the parties. Both the family and
marriage are to be "protected" by the state.
To sum up, Ricardo failed to discharge the burden of proof to show that Teresita suffered from
psychological incapacity; thus, his petition for annulment of marriage must fail. Ricardo merely
established that Teresita had been remiss in her duties as a wife for being irresponsible in taking

care of their familys finances a fault or deficiency that does not amount to the psychological
incapacity that Article 36 of the Family Code requires. We reiterate that irreconcilable
differences, sexual infidelity or perversion, emotional immaturity and irresponsibility, and the like,
do not by themselves warrant a finding of psychological incapacity, as the same may only be
due to a persons difficulty, refusal or neglect to undertake the obligations of marriage that is not
rooted in some psychological illness that Article 36 of the Family Code addresses.

FC Case No. 24
Republic of the Philippines v Nestor Galang
G.R. No. 168335

June 6, 2011
Facts: On March 9, 1994, the respondent Nestor and Juvy contracted marriage in
Pampanga. The respondent worked as an artist-illustrator at the Clark Development
Corporation, earning P8,500.00 monthly. Juvy, on the other hand, stayed at home as a
housewife. They have one child, Christopher.
On August 4, 1999, the respondent filed with the RTC a petition for the
declaration of nullity of his marriage with Juvy, under Article 36 of the Family Code, as
amended alleging that Juvy was psychologically incapacitated to exercise the essential
obligations of marriage, as she was a kleptomaniac and a swindler. He claimed that
Juvy stole his ATM card and his parents money, and often asked money from their
friends and relatives on the pretext that Christopher was confined in a hospital.
According to the respondent, Juvy suffers from mental deficiency, innate immaturity,
distorted discernment and total lack of care, love and affection [towards him and their]
child. He posited that Juvys incapacity was extremely serious and appears to be
incurable.
Psychological findings tend to confirm that the Juvy suffers from personality and
behavioral disorders. These disorders are manifested through her grave dependency on
gambling and stealing money. She doesnt manifest any sense of responsibility and
loyalty and these disorders appear to be incorrigible.
The RTC nullified the parties marriage in its decision of January 22, 2001. The
trial court saw merit in the testimonies of the respondent and the psychologist. The CA,
in its decision dated November 25, 2004, affirmed the RTC decision in toto.
Issue: Whether or not there is basis to nullify the respondents marriage to Juvy on the
ground that at the time of the celebration of the marriage, Juvy suffered from
psychological incapacity that prevented her from complying with her essential marital
obligations.
Held: NO
In the present case and using the guidelines, we find the totality of the
respondents evidence the testimonies of the respondent and the psychologist, and the
latters psychological report and evaluation insufficient to prove Juvys psychological
incapacity pursuant to Article 36 of the Family Code.
a.

The respondents testimony

The respondents testimony failed to show that Juvys condition is a manifestation


of a disordered personality rooted in some incapacitating or debilitating psychological
condition that rendered her unable to discharge her essential marital obligation. In this
light, the acts attributed to Juvy only showed indications of immaturity and lack of sense

of responsibility, resulting in nothing more than the difficulty, refusal or neglect in the
performance of marital obligations.
b.

The Psychologists Report

The submitted psychological report hardly helps the respondents cause, as it


glaringly failed to establish that Juvy was psychologically incapacitated to perform her
essential marital duties at the material time required by Article 36 of the Family Code.
First, we note that the psychologist did not even identify the types of
psychological tests which she administered on the respondent and the root cause of
Juvys psychological condition. We also stress that the acts alleged to have been
committed by Juvy all occurred during the marriage; there was no showing that any
mental disorder existed at the inception of the marriage. Second, the report failed to
prove the gravity or severity of Juvys alleged condition, specifically, why and to what
extent the disorder is serious, and how it incapacitated her to comply with her marital
duties. Significantly, the report did not even categorically state the particular type of
personality disorder found. Finally, the report failed to establish the incurability of Juvys
condition. The reports pronouncements that Juvy lacks the initiative to change and that
her mental incapacity appears incorrigible are insufficient to prove that her mental
condition could not be treated, or if it were otherwise, the cure would be beyond her
means to undertake.
c. The Psychologists Testimony
The psychologists court testimony fared no better in proving the juridical
antecedence, gravity or incurability of Juvys alleged psychological defect as she merely
reiterated what she wrote in her report i.e., that Juvy was lazy and irresponsible; played
mahjong and kuhawo for money; stole money from the respondent; deceived people to
borrow cash; and neglected her child without linking these to an underlying
psychological cause. Again, these allegations, even if true, all occurred during the
marriage. The testimony was totally devoid of any information or insight into Juvys early
life and associations, how she acted before and at the time of the marriage, and how
the symptoms of a disordered personality developed. Simply put, the psychologist failed
to trace the history of Juvys psychological condition and to relate it to an existing
incapacity at the time of the celebration of the marriage.
She, likewise, failed to successfully prove the elements of gravity and incurability.
In these respects, she merely stated that despite the respondents efforts to show love
and affection, Juvy was hesitant to change. From this premise, she jumped to the
conclusion that Juvy appeared to be incurable or incorrigible, and would be very hard to
cure. These unfounded conclusions cannot be equated with gravity or incurability that
Article 36 of the Family Code requires. To be declared clinically or medically incurable is
one thing; to refuse or be reluctant to change is another. To hark back to what we earlier
discussed, psychological incapacity refers only to the most serious cases of personality

disorders clearly demonstrative of an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and


significance to the marriage.

FC Case No. 25

GR. No. 189121

July 31, 2013

AMELIA GARCIA QUIASON VS. MARIA LOURDES BELEN

Facts:
This case started as a Petition for Letters of Administration of the Estate of Eliseo
Quiazon (Eliseo), filed by herein respondents who are Eliseos common-law wife and
daughter. The petition was opposed by herein petitioners Amelia Garcia-Quaizon
(Amelia) to whom Eliseo was married. Amelia was joined by her children, Jenneth
Quiazon (Jenneth) and Maria Jennifer Quiazon (Jennifer).
On 12 September 1994, Maria Lourdes Elise Quiazon (Elise), represented by her
mother, Ma. Lourdes Belen (Lourdes), filed a Petition for Letters of Administration before
the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Las Pias City. In her Petition docketed as SP Proc.
No. M-3957, Elise claims that she is the natural child of Eliseo having been conceived
and born at the time when her parents were both capacitated to marry each other.
Insisting on the legal capacity of Eliseo and Lourdes to marry, Elise impugned the
validity of Eliseos marriage to Amelia by claiming that it was bigamous for having been
contracted during the subsistence of the latters marriage with one Filipito Sandico
(Filipito). To prove her filiation to the decedent, Elise, among others, attached to the
Petition for Letters of Administration her Certificate of Live Birth4 signed by Eliseo as
her father. In the same petition, it was alleged that Eliseo left real properties worth
P2,040,000.00 and personal properties worth P2,100,000.00. In order to preserve the
estate of Eliseo and to prevent the dissipation of its value, Elise sought her appointment
as administratrix of her late fathers estate.
The RTC ruled in favor of herein petioners and order the issuance of the Letter of
Administration. CA confirmed the decison in toto.
Issue:
Whether or not the marriage of the decedent (Eliseo) with Amelia was void for being
bigamous.
HELD:
YES.
This finding is consistent with the fact that in 1985, Eliseo filed an action for judicial
partition of properties against Amelia before the RTC of Quezon City, Branch 106, on
the ground that their marriage is void for being bigamous. It disproves rather than
supports petitioners submission that the lower courts findings arose from an erroneous

appreciation of the evidence on record. Factual findings of the trial court, when affirmed
by the appellate court, must be held to be conclusive and binding upon this Court.
In a void marriage, it was though no marriage has taken place, thus, it cannot be the
source of rights. Any interested party may attack the marriage directly or collaterally. A
void marriage can be questioned even beyond the lifetime of the parties to the marriage.
It must be pointed out that at the time of the celebration of the marriage of Eliseo and
Amelia, the law in effect was the Civil Code, and not the Family Code, making the ruling
in Nial v. Bayadog applicable four-square to the case at hand. In Nial, the Court, in no
uncertain terms, allowed therein petitioners to file a petition for the declaration of nullity
of their fathers marriage to therein respondent after the death of their father, by
contradistinguishing void from voidable marriages, to wit:
Consequently, 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 and not after
death of either, in which case the parties and 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.
It was emphasized in Nial that in a void marriage, no marriage has taken place and it
cannot be the source of rights, such that any interested party may attack the marriage
directly or collaterally without prescription, which may be filed even beyond the lifetime
of the parties to the marriage.
Contrary to the position taken by the petitioners, the existence of a previous marriage
between Amelia and Filipito was sufficiently established by no less than the Certificate
of Marriage issued by the Diocese of Tarlac and signed by the officiating priest of the
Parish of San Nicolas de Tolentino in Capas, Tarlac. The said marriage certificate is a
competent evidence of marriage and the certification from the National Archive that no
information relative to the said marriage exists does not diminish the probative value of
the entries therein. We take judicial notice of the fact that the first marriage was
celebrated more than 50 years ago, thus, the possibility that a record of marriage can
no longer be found in the National Archive, given the interval of time, is not completely
remote. Consequently, in the absence of any showing that such such marriage had
been dissolved at the time of Eliseo and Amelia's marriage was solemnized, the
inescapable conclusion is that the marriage is bigamous, and therefore, void ab initio.

FC Case No. 26
Topic: Validity of marriage as well as legitimacy and filiation can be questioned only in a direct
action seasonably filed by the proper party, and not through collateral attack.

BRAZA V. THE CITY CIVIL REGISTRAR OF HIMAMAYLAN CITY


G.R. No. 181174

December 4, 2009

Ponente: Conchita Carpio Morales


First Division

Facts:
Petitioner Ma. Cristina Torres married Pablo Braza, Jr. on January 4, 1978. Their union bore
three children who were Cristinas co-petitioners. Pablo died on April 15, 2002 in Indonesia and
his body was repratriated to the Philippines. During the wake, Respondent Lucille Titular, began
introducing her minor son (a co-respondent) Patrick Alvin Titular Braza as her and Pablos son.
Petitioner then made inquiries and obtained Patricks birth certificate from the Local Civil
Registrar of Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental and by virtue of which she found the following
entries:
-

Date of birth: January 1, 1996


The child was acknowledged by Pablo on January 13, 1997
The child was legitimated by virtue of the subsequent marriage of Pablo and respondent
on April 22, 1998.

Petitioner also obtained a copy of Pablo and the respondents marriage contract showing that
they were married on April 22, 1998.
Petitioner filed before the RTC of Himamaylan City a petition to correct the entries in the birth
record of Patrick in the Local Civil Register and prayed for the following:
1) Correction of the entries in Patricks birth record with respect to his legitimation, the
name of the father and his acknowledgment, and use of the last name Braza
2) Directive to the guardians of Patrick to submit him to DNA testing to determine paternity
and filiation
3) The declaration of nullity of the legitimation of Patrick and, for this purpose, the
declaration of the marriage of Lucille and Pablo as bigamous
The RTC dismissed the petition holding that the controversy should be ventilated in an ordinary
adversarial action as it is not acting as a family court under the Family Code.

Issue: WON RTC has jurisdiction to annul the marriage of respondent and impugn legitimacy of
respondents child in a petition to correct entries in local civil register?

Held: NO.
Nope. In a special proceeding for correction of entry under Rule 108, the trial court has no
jurisdiction to nullify marriages and rule on legitimacy and filiation. Under these rules, only
correction of clerical, spelling, typographical and other innocuous errors in the civil
registry may be allowed.
A clerical error is one which is visible to the eyes or obvious to the understanding; an error made by
a clerk or a transcriber; a mistake in copying or writing, or a harmless change such as a correction of
name that is clearly misspelled or of a misstatement of the occupation of the parent. Substantial or
contentious alterations may be allowed only in adversarial proceedings, in which all interested
parties are impleaded and due process is properly observed.

Petitioner insists that the main cause of action is for the correction of the birth records and that
the rest of the prayers are merely incidental. However the court held that the applicable rule is
under A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC Art. 171 of the Family Code, the petition should be filed in a
Family Court as expressly provided in said Code. The Supreme Court also emphasized that,
validity of marriages as well as legitimacy and filiation can be questioned only in a direct
action seasonably filed by the proper party, and not through collateral attack such as the
petition filed by the petitioner.

FC Case No. 27
Braza v. The City Civil Registrar of Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental
G.R. No. 181174, December 4, 2009

CARPIO MORALES, J.:


FACTS: Petitioner Ma. Cristinas husband, Pablo died on April 15, 2002 in a vehicular accident
in Indonesia. During the wake following the repatriation of his remains to the Philippines,
respondent Lucille Titular began introducing her co-respondent minor Patrick Alvin Titular Braza
(Patrick) as her and Pablo's son. Petitioner thereupon made inquiries with the Local Civil
Registrar of Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental. On the annotation of Patricks birth certificate
reflects Patrick as having been acknowleged by Pablo (or Pablito) as son on January 13, 1997,
that he was legitimated by virtue of subsequent marriage of parents on April 22, 1998 at Manila,
and that he shall be known as Patrick Titular Braza.
Ma. Cristina likewise obtained a copy of a marriage contract showing that Pablo and Lucille
were married on April 22, 1998, drawing her and her co-petitioners (her three legitimate children
with Pablo) to file on December 23, 2005 before the Regional Trial Court of Himamaylan City,
Negros Occidental a petition to correct the entries in the birth record of Patrick in the
Local Civil Register.
Contending that Patrick could not have been legitimated by the supposed marriage between
Lucille and Pablo, said marriage being bigamous on account of the valid and subsisting
marriage between Ma. Cristina and Pablo, petitioners prayed for (1) the correction of the entries
in Patrick's birth record with respect to his legitimation, the name of the father and his
acknowledgment, and the use of the last name "Braza"; 2) a directive to Leon, Cecilia and
Lucille, all surnamed Titular, as guardians of the minor Patrick, to submit Parick to DNA testing
to determine his paternity and filiation; and 3) the declaration of nullity of the legitimation of
Patrick as stated in his birth certificate and, for this purpose, the declaration of the marriage of
Lucille and Pablo as bigamous.
TC dismissed the petition, holding that in a special proceeding for correction of entry, the court,
which is not acting as a family court under the Family Code, has no jurisdiction over an action to
annul the marriage of Lucille and Pablo, impugn the legitimacy of Patrick, and order Patrick to
be subjected to a DNA test, hence, the controversy should be ventilated in an ordinary
adversarial action. MR was denied.
ISSUE: Whether or not the court may pass upon the validity of marriage and questions on
legitimacy even in an action to correct entries in the civil registrar. (WON substantial errors, such
as those sought to be corrected in the present case, can be the subject of a petition under Rule
108)
HELD: NO. The validity of marriages as well as legitimacy and filiation can be questioned only
in a direct action seasonably filed by the proper party, and not through a collateral attack such
as a petition for correction of entry.
In a special proceeding for correction of entry under Rule 108 (Cancellation or Correction of
Entries in the Original Registry), the trial court has no jurisdiction to nullify marriages and rule on

legitimacy and filiation. Rule 108 of the Rules of Court vis a vis Article 412 of the Civil Code
charts the procedure by which an entry in the civil registry may be cancelled or corrected. The
proceeding contemplated therein may generally be used only to correct clerical, spelling,
typographical and other innocuous errors in the civil registry. A clerical error is one which is
visible to the eyes or obvious to the understanding; an error made by a clerk or a transcriber; a
mistake in copying or writing, or a harmless change such as a correction of name that is clearly
misspelled or of a misstatement of the occupation of the parent. Substantial or contentious
alterations may be allowed only in adversarial proceedings, in which all interested parties are
impleaded and due process is properly observed.
The petitioners cause of action is actually to seek the declaration of Pablo and Lucilles
marriage as void for being bigamous and impugn Patricks legitimacy, which causes of action
are governed not by Rule 108 but by A.M. No. 02-11-10-SC and Art. 171 of the Family Code,
respectively, hence, the petition should be filed in a Family Court as expressly provided in said
Code.

FC Case No. 28
REPUBLIC vs OLAYBAR
Facts:
Respondent requested from the National Statistics Office (NSO) a Certificate of No
Marriage (CENOMAR) as one of the requirements for her marriage with her boyfriend of five
years. Upon receipt thereof, she discovered that she was already married to a certain Ye Son
Sune, a Korean National, on June 24, 2002, at the Office of the Municipal Trial Court in Cities
(MTCC), Palace of Justice. She denied having contracted said marriage and claimed that she
did not know the alleged husband; she did not appear before the solemnizing officer; and, that
the signature appearing in the marriage certificate is not hers. She, thus, filed a Petition for
Cancellation of Entries in the Marriage Contract, especially the entries in the wife portion
thereof. Respondent impleaded the Local Civil Registrar of Cebu City, as well as her alleged
husband, as parties to the case.
During trial, respondent alleged that it is impossible for her to appear before the
supposed solemnizing officer, at the time the marriage was allegedly celebrated, since at that
time she was working in Makati. She also denied having known the supposed husband. She
believed that her name was used by a certain Johnny Singh, who owned a travel agency, whom
she gave her personal circumstances in order for her to obtain a passport. Respondent also
presented as witness a certain Eufrocina Natinga, an employee of MTCC, Branch 1, who
confirmed that the marriage of Ye Son Sune was indeed celebrated in their office, but claimed
that the alleged wife who appeared was definitely not respondent. Lastly, a document examiner
testified that the signature appearing in the marriage contract was forged.
RTC rendered judgment in favor of herein respondent, Olaybar, which directed the Local
Civil Registrar of Cebu to cancel all the entries in the WIFE portion of the alleged marriage
contract of the petitioner and respondent Ye Son Sune. Petitioner, however, moved for the
reconsideration of the assailed Decision on the grounds that: (1) there was no clerical spelling,
typographical and other innocuous errors in the marriage contract for it to fall within the
provisions of Rule 108 of the Rules of Court; and (2) granting the cancellation of all the entries
in the wife portion of the alleged marriage contract is, in effect, declaring the marriage void ab
initio. Thus, this case was brought to SC.
Issue:
1. Whether the cancellation of entries in the marriage contract which, in effect, nullifies the
marriage may be undertaken in a Rule 108 proceeding.
Held:
No, Rule 108 of the Rules of Court provides the procedure for cancellation or correction
of entries in the civil registry. The proceedings may either be summary or adversary. If the
correction is clerical, then the procedure to be adopted is summary. If the rectification affects the
civil status, citizenship or nationality of a party, it is deemed substantial, and the procedure to be
adopted is adversary. Since the promulgation of Republic v. Valencia19 in 1986, the Court has
repeatedly ruled that "even substantial errors in a civil registry may be corrected through a
petition filed under Rule 108, with the true facts established and the parties aggrieved by the

error availing themselves of the appropriate adversarial proceeding."20 An appropriate


adversary suit or proceeding is one where the trial court has conducted proceedings where all
relevant facts have been fully and properly developed, where opposing counsel have been
given opportunity to demolish the opposite partys case, and where the evidence has been
thoroughly weighed and considered.21
It is true that in special proceedings, formal pleadings and a hearing may be dispensed with,
and the remedy [is] granted upon mere application or motion. However, a special proceeding is
not always summary. The procedure laid down in Rule 108 is not a summary proceeding per se.
It requires publication of the petition; it mandates the inclusion as parties of all persons who may
claim interest which would be affected by the cancellation or correction; it also requires the civil
registrar and any person in interest to file their opposition, if any; and it states that although the
court may make orders expediting the proceedings, it is after hearing that the court shall either
dismiss the petition or issue an order granting the same. Thus, as long as the procedural
requirements in Rule 108 are followed, it is the appropriate adversary proceeding to effect
substantial corrections and changes in entries of the civil register.22
In this case, the entries made in the wife portion of the certificate of marriage are admittedly the
personal circumstances of respondent. The latter, however, claims that her signature was forged
and she was not the one who contracted marriage with the purported husband. In other words,
she claims that no such marriage was entered into or if there was, she was not the one who
entered into such contract. It must be recalled that when respondent tried to obtain a
CENOMAR from the NSO, it appeared that she was married to a certain Ye Son Sune. She then
sought the cancellation of entries in the wife portion of the marriage certificate.
In filing the petition for correction of entry under Rule 108, respondent made the Local Civil
Registrar of Cebu City, as well as her alleged husband Ye Son Sune, as parties-respondents. It
is likewise undisputed that the procedural requirements set forth in Rule 108 were complied
with. The Office of the Solicitor General was likewise notified of the petition, which in turn
authorized the Office of the City Prosecutor to participate in the proceedings. More importantly,
trial was conducted where respondent herself, the stenographer of the court where the alleged
marriage was conducted, as well as a document examiner, testified. Several documents were
also considered as evidence. With the testimonies and other evidence presented, the trial court
found that the signature appearing in the subject marriage certificate was different from
respondents signature appearing in some of her government issued identification cards.23 The
court thus made a categorical conclusion that respondents signature in the marriage certificate
was not hers and, therefore, was forged. Clearly, it was established that, as she claimed in her
petition, no such marriage was celebrated.
WHEREFORE, premises considered, the petition is DENIED for lack of merit. The Regional
Trial Court Decision dated May 5, 2009 and Order dated August 25, 2009 in SP. Proc. No.
16519-CEB, are AFFIRMED

FC Case No. 29
G.R. No. 164435
September 29, 2009
VICTORIA S. JARILLO, Petitioner,
versus
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondent.
Petitioner Jarillo was charged with Bigamy before the Regional Trial Court for having
contracted another marriage with one Emmanuel Ebora Santos Uy, while he was still legally
bonded by marriage with Rafael M. Alocillo. Petitioner filed declaration of nullity of their
marriage. Pending the courts findings, she was found guilty in the lower court for the crime as
charged. On appeal to the Court of Appeals, the decision was affirmed in toto. Pending appeal,
the RTC declared petitioners 1974 and 1975 marriages to Alocillo null and void ab initio on the
ground of Alocillos psychological incapacity. She filed a motion for reconsideration on the basis
of the said declaration. The court however denied the reconsideration because, while it retroacts
to the date of the celebration of the marriage insofar as the vinculum between the spouses is
concerned, the said marriage is not without legal consequences, among which is incurring
criminal liability for bigamy.
ISSUE: Whether CA was correct in proceeding with the bigamy case despite the pendency of a
nullity of marriage case.
HELD:
Any person who contracts another and subsequent marriage absent any declaration of
nullity of the prior marriage is guilty of bigamy. In the case at bar, any decision in the declaration
for nullity will not erase the fact that she contracted another marriage and the crime has been
committed. Thus, it is not a matter of prejudicial question.

FC Case 30 Art. 40, FC final judgment of nullity of previous marriage required before
remarriage

Montaez v. Cipriano
Oct. 22, 2012
Peralta, J.
3rd Division
I. Whether the judicial nullity of a first marriage prior to the enactment of the Family Code and
the pronouncement in Wiegel vs. Sempio-Diy on the ground of psychological incapacity is a
valid defense for a charge of bigamy for entering into a second marriage prior to the enactment
of the Family Code and the pronouncement in Wiegel vs. Sempio-Diy?
In this case, it appears that when respondent contracted a second marriage with Silverio in
1983, her first marriage with Socrates celebrated in 1976 was still subsisting as the same had
not yet been annulled or declared void by a competent authority. Thus, all the elements of
bigamy were alleged in the Information. In her Motion to Quash the Information, she alleged,
among others, that:
xxxx
2. The records of this case would bear out that accused's marriage with said Socrates
Flores was declared void ab initio on 14 April 2003 by Branch 256 of the Regional Trial
Court of Muntinlupa City. The said decision was never appealed, and became final and
executory shortly thereafter.
3. In other words, before the filing of the Information in this case, her marriage with Mr.
Flores had already been declared void from the beginning.
4. There was therefore no marriage prior to 24 January 1983 to speak of. In other words,
there was only one marriage.
5. The basic element of the crime of bigamy, that is, two valid marriages, is therefore
wanting.25
Clearly, the annulment of respondent's first marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity
was declared only in 2003. The question now is whether the declaration of nullity of
respondent's first marriage justifies the dismissal of the Information for bigamy filed against her.
We rule in the negative.
II. Whether the trial court erred in stating that the jurisprudence prior to the enactment of the
Family Code and the pronouncement in Wiegel vs. Sempio-Diy regarding the necessity of
securing a declaration of nullity of the first marriage before entering a second marriage
ambivalent, such that a person was allowed to enter a subsequent marriage without the
annulment of the first without incurring criminal liability.
In Jarillo v. People, where the accused, in her motion for reconsideration, argued that since her
marriages were entered into before the effectivity of the Family Code, then the applicable law is
Section 29 of the Marriage Law (Act 3613), instead of Article 40 of the Family Code, which

requires a final judgment declaring the previous marriage void before a person may contract a
subsequent marriage. We did not find the argument meritorious and said:
As far back as 1995, in Atienza v. Brillantes, Jr., the Court already made the declaration that
Article 40, which is a rule of procedure, should be applied retroactively because Article 256 of
the Family Code itself provides that said "Code shall have retroactive effect insofar as it does
not prejudice or impair vested or acquired rights." The Court went on to explain, thus:
The fact that procedural statutes may somehow affect the litigants' rights may not preclude their
retroactive application to pending actions. The retroactive application of procedural laws is not
violative of any right of a person who may feel that he is adversely affected. The reason is that
as a general rule, no vested right may attach to, nor arise from, procedural laws.
In Marbella-Bobis v. Bobis, the Court pointed out the danger of not enforcing the provisions of
Article 40 of the Family Code, to wit:
In the case at bar, respondents clear intent is to obtain a judicial declaration nullity of his first
marriage and thereafter to invoke that very same judgment to prevent his prosecution for
bigamy. He cannot have his cake and eat it too. Otherwise, all that an adventurous bigamist has
to do is disregard Article 40 of the Family Code, contract a subsequent marriage and escape a
bigamy charge by simply claiming that the first marriage is void and that the subsequent
marriage is equally void for lack of a prior judicial declaration of nullity of the first. A party may
even enter into a marriage license and thereafter contract a subsequent marriage without
obtaining a declaration of nullity of the first on the assumption that the first marriage is void.
Such scenario would render nugatory the provision on bigamy.

FC Case No. 31
ANTONE V. BERONILLA
G.R. No. 183824
December 8, 2010
FACTS
Myrna Antone alleged in her Affidavit-Complaint,filed in March 2007, that she and Leo
were married in 1978. However, Leo contracted a second marriage with Cecile Maguillo in 1991.
The prosecution filed the Information in the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in a criminal case of
Bigamy.
Pending the setting of the case for arraignment, Leo moved to quash the Information on
the ground that the facts charged do not constitute an offense because his marriage with Myrna
was declared null and void as of April 2007 and became final and executory on May 2007. Leo
argues that since the marriage had been declared null and void from the beginning, there was
actually no first marriage to speak of. Thus, absent the first marriage, the facts alleged in the
Information do not constitute the crime of bigamy. The prosecution argued that the marriage of
Myrna and Leo on 1978 was not severed prior to his second marriage on 1991, for which
bigamy has already been committed before the court declared the first marriage null and void on
2007.
The RTC sustained the motion to quash relying on Morigo v. People. Similarly, the Court
of Appeals dismissed the petition for certiorari.
ISSUE
Whether a subsequent declaration of nullity of the first marriage only after contracting
the subsequent marriage is immaterial in the crime of bigamy.
HELD:
Yes.
The Supreme Court ruled that Article 40 of the Family Code has reversed the previous
ruling of People v. Mendoza (under the Civil Code) declaring that: (a) a case for bigamy based
on a void ab initio marriage will not prosper because there is no need fora judicial decree to
establish that a void ab initio marriage is invalid; and (b) a marriage declared void ab initio has
retroactive legal effect such that there would be no first valid marriage to speak of after all,
which renders the elements of bigamy complete.

Moreover, this was extgensively discussed in Mercado v. Tan. Wherein the Court stated
that, under the Family Code a subsequent judicial declaration of the nullity of the first marriage
is immaterial in a bigamy case because, by then the crime had already been consummated.
Otherwise stated, a person who contracts a subsequent marriage absent a prior judicial
declaration of nullity of a previous marriage is guilty of bigamy.
While, Morigo v. People was promulgated after Mercado, the facts are different.
In Mercado, the first marriage was actually solemnized, although later declared void ab initio.
While in Mendoza, no marriage ceremony was performed by a duly authorized solemnizing
officer, because what occurred was a mere signing of a marriage contract through a private act.
Thus, there is no need to secure a judicial declaration of nullity before Morigo can contract a
subsequent marriage. The ruling of Morigois not applicable to this case.

FC Case No. 32
Marriages; Void Marriages; Marriage License; Property Relations

Sally Go-Bangayan v. Benjamin Bangayan, Jr.


700 SCRA 702 * July 3, 2013
Carpio, J.:
Second Division
Facts:
Benjamin is married to one Azucena Alegre and had three children with her. In 1979,
Benjamin developed a romantic relationship with herein petitioner Sally who was a customer in
the auto parts and supplies business owned by Benjamins family.
Azucena left for the United States in 1981. In February 1982, Benjamin and Sally lived
together as husband and wife. Sallys father was against the relationship.
To appease her father, Sally and Benjamin signed a purported marriage contract on
March 7, 1982. Sally assured him that said marriage contract would not be registered
considering Benjamins marital status.
During the period of their cohabitation, Sally and Benjamin produced two children and
acquired several real properties.
The relationship ended in 1994 when Sally left for Canada. She filed criminal actions for
bigamy and falsification of public documents against Benjamin, using their simulated marriage
contract as evidence.
As for Benjamin he filed a petition for declaration of non-existent of marriage and/or
declaration of nullity of marriage before the RTC on the ground that his marriage to Sally was
bigamous and that it lacked the formal requisites to a valid marriage license. He also asked for
the partition of properties he acquired with Sally pursuant to Article 148 of the Family Code. A
total of 44 registered properties became subject of the partition before trial court since Sally
named 37 other properties in her answer in addition to the 7 properties mentioned by Benjamin
in his petition.
The trial court ruled for Benjamin which gave weight to the certification from the Pasig
Local Civil Registrar that the purported Marriage License was not issued to Benjamin and Sally.
It further ruled that the marriage was not registered with the local civil registrar and NSI because
of Benjamins subsisting marriage with Azucena. It declared that the second marriage was void
not because of the existence of the first marriage but because it lacked a marriage license.
On the issue of partition, Sally could not claim the 37 properties she named as part of
her conjugal properties with Benjamin because she was not legally married to him and those
properties were owned by Benjamins parents who gave the properties to their children as

advance inheritance. The phrase married to Sally Go in the titles were merely descriptive of
Benjamins civil status in the title. The trial court then ordered the Registry of Deeds for Quezon
City and Manila to delete this phrase from the 37 titles.
On appeal, the CA partly granted Sallys petition with respect to the issue on partition.
The CA declared that of the 44 properties, 37 rightfully belonged to Benjamin and his siblings, 2
exclusively belong to Benjamin, 4 were solely owned by Sally and one was co-owned by them
to be shared equally but Benjamins share would accrue to the conjugal partnership with
Azucena.
Sallys Motion for Reconsideration was denied, hence this petition.
Issues:
1. Whether or not the marriage between Benjamin and Sally is null and void ab
initio and non-existent;
2. Whether or not the marriage between Benjamin and Sally is bigamous;
3. Whether or not the property relations of Benjamin and Sally is governed by
Article 148 of the Family Code.
Held:
1. Validity of Marriage between Benjamin and Sally
We see no inconsistency in finding the marriage between Benjamin and Sally null and
void ab initio and, at the same time, non-existent.
Under Article 35 of the Family Code, a marriage solemnized without a license, except
those covered by Article 34 where no license is necessary, "shall be void from the beginning."
In this case, the marriage between Benjamin and Sally was solemnized without a
license. It was duly established that no marriage license was issued to them and that Marriage
License No. N-07568 did not match the marriage license numbers issued by the local civil
registrar of Pasig City for the month of February 1982.
The case clearly falls under Section 3 of Article 35 which made their marriage void ab
initio. The marriage between Benjamin and Sally was also non-existent. Applying the general
rules on void or inexistent contracts under Article 1409 of the Civil Code, contracts which are
absolutely simulated or fictitious are "inexistent and void from the beginning." Thus, the Court of
Appeals did not err in sustaining the trial courts ruling that the marriage between Benjamin and
Sally was null and void ab initio and non-existent.
2. Existence of Bigamous Marriage
For bigamy to exist, the second or subsequent marriage must have all the essential
requisites for validity except for the existence of a prior marriage.
In this case, there was really no subsequent marriage. Benjamin and Sally just signed a
purported marriage contract without a marriage license. The supposed marriage was not
recorded with the local civil registrar and the National Statistics Office. In short, the marriage

between Benjamin and Sally did not exist. They lived together and represented themselves as
husband and wife without the benefit of marriage.
3. Property Relations between Benjamin and Sally
The Court of Appeals correctly ruled that the property relations of Benjamin and Sally is
governed by Article 148 of the Family Code.
Benjamin and Sally cohabitated without the benefit of marriage. Thus, only the
properties acquired by them through their actual joint contribution of money, property, or industry
shall be owned by them in common in proportion to their respective contributions. Thus, both
the trial court and the Court of Appeals correctly excluded the 37 properties being claimed by
Sally which were given by Benjamins father to his children as advance inheritance.
As regards the seven remaining properties, we rule that the decision of the Court of Appeals is
more in accord with the evidence on record. Only the property covered by TCT No. 61722 was
registered in the names of Benjamin and Sally as spouses. The properties under TCT Nos.
61720 and 190860 were in the name of Benjamin with the descriptive title "married to Sally."
The property covered by CCT Nos. 8782 and 8783 were registered in the name of Sally with the
descriptive title "married to Benjamin" while the properties under TCT Nos. N-193656 and
253681 were registered in the name of Sally as a single individual.
We have ruled that the words "married to" preceding the name of a spouse are merely
descriptive of the civil status of the registered owner. Such words do not prove co-ownership.
Without proof of actual contribution from either or both spouses, there can be no co-ownership
under Article 148 of the Family Code.

Case No. 33

LEONILA G. SANTIAGO, Petitioner, v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,


Respondent.
G.R. No. 200233, July 15, 2015
SERENO, C.J.:
FACTS: Four months after the solemnization of their marriage on, Leonila G. Santiago
and Nicanor F. Santos faced an Information for bigamy. Petitioner pleaded "not guilty,"
while her putative husband escaped the criminal suit.
The prosecution adduced evidence that Santos, who had been married to Estela
Galang since 2 June 1974, asked petitioner to marry him. Petitioner, who 'was a 43year-old widow then, married Santos on despite the advice of her brother-in-law and
parents-in-law that if she wanted to remarry, she should choose someone who was
"without responsibility."
Petitioner asserted her affirmative defense that she could not be included as an
accused in the crime of bigamy, because she had been under the belief that Santos was
still single when they got married. She also averred that for there to be a conviction for
bigamy, his second marriage to her should be proven valid by the prosecution; but in
this case, she argued that their marriage was void due to the lack of a marriage license.
Eleven years after the inception of this criminal case, the first wife, Estela Galang,
testified for the prosecution. She alleged that she had met petitioner as early as March
and April 1997, on which occasions the former introduced herself as the legal wife of
Santos. Petitioner denied this allegation and averred that she met Galang only in August
and September 1997, or after she had already married Santos.
The RTC appreciated the undisputed fact that petitioner married Santos during the
subsistence of his marriage to Galang. Petitioner moved for reconsideration which was
denied. On appeal, the CA gave more weight to the prosecution witnesses' narration.
ISSUE: Is the second marriage of Santiago valid, for there to be a conviction for
bigamy?
HELD: After a perusal of the records, it is clear that the marriage between petitioner and
Santos took place without a marriage license. The absence of this requirement is
purportedly explained in their Certificate of Marriage, which reveals that their union was
celebrated under Article 34 of the Family Code, which provides an exemption from the

requirement of a marriage license if the parties have actually lived together as husband
and wife for at least five years prior to the celebration of their marriage.
Santiago and Santos, however, reflected the exact opposite of this demonstrable fact.
Although the records do not show that they submitted an affidavit of cohabitation as
required by Article 34 of the Family Code, it appears that the two of them lied before the
solemnizing officer and misrepresented that they had actually cohabited for at least five
years before they married each other. Unfortunately, subsequent to this lie was the
issuance of the Certificate of Marriage, in which the solemnizing officer stated under
oath that no marriage license was necessary, because the marriage was solemnized
under Article 34 of the Family Code.
The Certificate of Marriage, signed by Santos and Santiago, contained the
misrepresentation perpetrated by them that they were eligible to contract marriage
without a license. We thus face an anomalous situation wherein petitioner seeks to be
acquitted of bigamy based on her illegal actions of (1) marrying Santos without a
marriage license despite knowing that they had not satisfied the cohabitation
requirement under the law; and (2) falsely making claims in no less than her marriage
contract.
In violation of our law against illegal marriages, petitioner married Santos while knowing
full well that they had not yet complied with the five-year cohabitation requirement under
Article 34 of the Family Code. Consequently, it will be the height of absurdity for this
Court to allow petitioner to use her illegal act to escape criminal conviction.
No less than the present Constitution provides that "marriage, as an inviolable social
institution, is the foundation of the family and shall be protected by the State." It must be
safeguarded from the whims and caprices of the contracting parties. In keeping
therefore with this fundamental policy, this Court affirms the conviction of petitioner for
bigamy.

FC Case No. 34

Capili v. People
700 SCRA 443 (2013)
FACTS: James Walter Capili, while being married to Karla Medina-Capili, contracted a second
marriage with Shirley Tismo. They were then charged with bigamy. The petitioner thereafter filed
a Motion to Suspend Proceedings alleging, among others, that the pendency of the civil case for
the declaration of nullity of the second marriage serves as a prejudicial question in the criminal
case. The second marriage was then declared null and void and said decision is already final.
ISSUE: WON the subsequent declaration of nullity of the second marriage is a ground for
dismissal of the criminal case for bigamy
HELD: No. All the elements of the crime of bigamy were present. The subsequent judicial
declaration of the nullity of the first marriage was immaterial because prior to the declaration of
nullity, the crime had already been consummated. A marriage, even one which is void or
voidable, shall be deemed valid until declared otherwise in a judicial proceeding. In this case,
both the first and second marriage were subsisting before the second marriage was annulled.

FC Case No. 35
Valdez v. Republic

FACTS: Petitioner married Sofio on January 11, 1971 in Pateros, Rizal and had one child.
Petitioner and Sofio argued constantly and sometime on March 1972 Sofio left their conjugal
dwelling. In October 1975, Sofio and petitioner talked and agreed to separate. They executed a
document to that effect. That was the last time petitioner saw him. After that, petitioner did not
hear any news of Sofio, his whereabouts or even if he was alive or not.
Believing that Sofio was already dead, petitioner married Virgilio Reyes on June 20, 1985.
Subsequently, Virgilios filed an application for naturalization with the United States Department
of Homeland Security. Said application was denied because petitioners marriage to Sofio was
subsisting. Hence, on March 29, 2007, petitioner filed a Petition before the RTC of Camiling,
Tarlac seeking the declaration of presumptive death of Sofio.
The RTC dismissed the Petition for lack of merit. The RTC held that Angelita was not able to
prove the well-grounded belief that her husband Sofio Polborosa was already dead. It said that
under Article 41 of the Family Code, the present spouse has the burden to prove that her
spouse has been absent and that she has a well-founded belief that the absent spouse is
already dead before the present spouse may contract a subsequent marriage. This belief must
be the result of proper and honest-to-goodness inquiries and efforts to ascertain the
whereabouts of the absent spouse.
The RTC found that petitioners did not try to find her husband anymore in light of their mutual
agreement to live separately. Likewise, petitioners daughter testified that her mother prevented
her from looking for her father. The RTC also said there is a strong possibility that Sofio is still
alive.
Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration. She argued that it is the Civil Code that applies in
this case and not the Family Code since petitioners marriage to Sofio was celebrated on 1971
before the Family Code took effect. Petitioner further argued that she had acquired a vested
right under the provisions of the Civil Code. RTC denied the motion.

ISSUE: Whether the provisions of the Civil Code or the Family Code will apply in resolving the
issue on the presumption of death of Sofio.

HELD: It is readily apparent, however, that the marriages of petitioner to Sofio and Virgilio on
January 11, 1971 and June 20, 1985, respectively, were both celebrated during the time that the
Civil Code was in effect.
From the foregoing, it can be gleaned that, under the Civil Code, 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.
Consequently, at the time of petitioners marriage to Virgilio, there existed no impediment to
petitioners capacity to marry, and the marriage is valid under paragraph 2 of Article 83 of the
Civil Code.
Further, considering that it is the Civil Code that applies, proof of well-founded belief is not
required. Petitioner could not have been expected to comply with this requirement since the
Family Code was not yet in effect at the time of her marriage to Virgilio. The enactment of the
Family Code in 1988 does not change this conclusion.
The Court likewise explained that presumption of death cannot be the subject of court
proceedings independent of the settlement of the absentees estate.

Case No. 36
Republic v. Maria Fe Espinosa Cantor
GR. No. 184621 Dec. 10, 2013

Facts:
The respondent and Jerry were married on September 20, 1997. They lived together as
husband and wife in their conjugal dwelling in Agan Homes, Koronadal City, South Cotabato.
Sometime in January 1998, the couple had a violent quarrel brought about by: (1) the
respondents inability to reach "sexual climax" whenever she and Jerry would have intimate
moments; and (2) Jerrys expression of animosity toward the respondents father.
After their quarrel, Jerry left their conjugal dwelling and this was the last time that the
respondent ever saw him. Since then, she had not seen, communicated nor heard anything
from Jerry or about his whereabouts.
On May 21, 2002, or more than four (4) years from the time of Jerrys disappearance, the
respondent filed before the RTC a petition4for her husbands declaration of presumptive death,
docketed as SP Proc. Case No. 313-25. She claimed that she had a well-founded belief that
Jerry was already dead. She alleged that she had inquired from her mother-in-law, her brothersin-law, her sisters-in-law, as well as her neighbors and friends, but to no avail. In the hopes of
finding Jerry, she also allegedly made it a point to check the patients directory whenever she
went to a hospital. All these earnest efforts, the respondent claimed, proved futile, prompting her
to file the petition in court.
RTC:
After due proceedings, the RTC issued an order granting the respondents petition and declaring
Jerry presumptively dead.
CA:
WHEREFORE, premises foregoing (sic), the instant petition is hereby DISMISSED and the
assailed Order dated December 15, 2006 declaring Jerry F. Cantor presumptively dead is
hereby AFFIRMED in toto.
Issue:
Whether there is a well-founded belief to declare the spouse of the respondent presumptively
dead
Ruling:
No. There was no well founded belief that the respondents spouse is dead. Before a judicial
declaration of presumptive death can be obtained, it must be shown that the prior spouse had
been absent for four consecutive years and the present spouse had a well-founded belief that
the prior spouse was already dead. Under Article 41 of the Family Code, there are four (4)

essential requisites for the declaration of presumptive death:


1. That the absent spouse has been missing for four consecutive years, or two consecutive
years if the disappearance occurred where there is danger of death under the circumstances
laid down in Article 391, Civil Code;
2. That the present spouse wishes to remarry;
3. That the present spouse has a well-founded belief that the absentee is dead; and
4. That the present spouse files a summary proceeding for the declaration of presumptive death
of the absentee.12
The burden of proof rests on the present spouse to show that all the requisites under
Article 41 of the Family Code are present. Since it is the present spouse who, for purposes of
declaration of presumptive death, substantially asserts the affirmative of the issue, it stands to
reason that the burden of proof lies with him/her. He who alleges a fact has the burden of
proving it and mere allegation is not evidence.
Notably, Article 41 of the Family Code, compared to the old provision of the Civil Code, which it
superseded, imposes a stricter standard. It requires a "well-founded belief" that the absentee
is already dead before a petition for declaration of presumptive death can be granted. We have
had occasion to make the same observation in Republic v. Nolasco, where we noted the crucial
differences between Article 41 of the Family Code and Article 83 of the Civil Code.
Thus, mere absence of the spouse (even for such period required by the law), lack of any news
that such absentee is still alive, failure to communicate or general presumption of absence
under the Civil Code would not suffice. This conclusion proceeds from the premise that Article
41 of the Family Code places upon the present spouse the burden of proving the additional and
more stringent requirement of "well-founded belief" which can only be discharged upon a
showing of proper and honest-to-goodness inquiries and efforts to ascertain not only the absent
spouses whereabouts but, more importantly, that the absent spouse is still alive or is already
dead.
The law did not define what is meant by "well-founded belief." It depends upon the
circumstances of each particular case. Its determination, so to speak, remains on a case-tocase basis. To be able to comply with this requirement, the present spouse must prove that
his/her belief was the result of diligent and reasonable efforts and inquiries to locate the absent
spouse and that based on these efforts and inquiries, he/she believes that under the
circumstances, the absent spouse is already dead. It requires exertion of active effort (not a
mere passive one).
In the case at bar, the respondents "well-founded belief" was anchored on her alleged "earnest
efforts" to locate Jerry, which consisted of the following:
(1) She made inquiries about Jerrys whereabouts from her in-laws, neighbors and
friends; and
(2) Whenever she went to a hospital, she saw to it that she looked through the patients
directory, hoping to find Jerry.
These efforts, however, fell short of the "stringent standard" and degree of diligence required by
jurisprudence for the following reasons:
First, the respondent did not actively look for her missing husband. It can be inferred from the
records that her hospital visits and her consequent checking of the patients directory therein
were unintentional. She did not purposely undertake a diligent search for her husband as her

hospital visits were not planned nor primarily directed to look for him. This Court thus considers
these attempts insufficient to engender a belief that her husband is dead.
Second, she did not report Jerrys absence to the police nor did she seek the aid of the
authorities to look for him. While a finding of well-founded belief varies with the nature of the
situation in which the present spouse is placed, under present conditions, we find it proper and
prudent for a present spouse, whose spouse had been missing, to seek the aid of the
authorities or, at the very least, report his/her absence to the police.
Third, she did not present as witnesses Jerrys relatives or their neighbors and friends, who can
corroborate her efforts to locate Jerry. Worse, these persons, from whom she allegedly made
inquiries, were not even named. As held in Nolasco, the present spouses bare assertion that he
inquired from his friends about his absent spouses whereabouts is insufficient as the names of
the friends from whom he made inquiries were not identified in the testimony nor presented as
witnesses.
Lastly, there was no other corroborative evidence to support the respondents claim that she
conducted a diligent search. Neither was there supporting evidence proving that she had a wellfounded belief other than her bare claims that she inquired from her friends and in-laws about
her husbands whereabouts. In sum, the Court is of the view that the respondent merely
engaged in a "passive search" where she relied on uncorroborated inquiries from her in-laws,
neighbors and friends. She failed to conduct a diligent search because her alleged efforts are
insufficient to form a well-founded belief that her husband was already dead.

FC Case No. 37
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES VS COURT OF APPEALS (TENTH DIVISION) AND ALAN
ALEGRO
G.R. NO 159614 December 9, 2005
Callejo, Sr.,
FACTS:
On March 29, 2001, Alan B. Alegro filed a petition with the RTC of Catbalogan, Samar
for the declaration of presumptive death of his wife, Rosalia (Lea) Julaton. He alleged that on
Feberuary 6, 1995, after he belated Lea for being always out of their house the night before,
Lea was nowhere to be found when he went home from work. Alan thought that Lea went home
to her parents house but later found out that she was not there. He sought help from the
Barangay Captain Juan Magat who promised to help him locate his wife. He also inquired from
his friends of Leas whereabouts but to no avail. On June 1995, He went to Manila to look for
Lea but did not find her. He returned to Catbalogan in 1997 and again looked for his wife but
failed. On June 2001, while the petition was pending, Alan reported Leas disappearance to the
local police station and on July 9, 2001, he reported the same to the NBI.
On May 28, 2001, the Republic of the Philippines, through the Office of the Solicitor
General (OSG), filed a Motion to Dismiss the petition, which was, however, denied by the court
for failure to comply with Rule 15 of the Rules of Court.
The RTC rendered a decision granting the petition which the CA affirmed. OSG filed the
instant petition alleging that Alegro failed to prove that he had a well-founded belief that Lea was
already dead. It averred that the respondent failed to exercise reasonable and diligent efforts to
locate his wife. The respondent even admitted that Leas father told him on February 14, 1995
that Lea had been to their house but left without notice. The OSG pointed out that the
respondent reported his wifes disappearance to the local police and also to the NBI only after
the petitioner filed a motion to dismiss the petition. The petitioner avers that, as gleaned from
the evidence, the respondent did not really want to find and locate Lea.
ISSUE: Whether or not the petition for the declaration of presumptive death of Lea should be
granted?

COURTS RULING:
No. In accordance with Article 41 of the Family Code, the spouse present is, thus,
burdened to prove that his spouse has been absent and that he has a well-founded belief that
the absent spouse is already dead before the present spouse may contract a subsequent
marriage. The law does not define what is meant by a well-grounded belief. The belief of the
present spouse must be the result of proper and honest to goodness inquiries and efforts to
ascertain the whereabouts of the absent spouse and whether the absent spouse is still alive or
is already dead. Whether or not 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 and after the disappearance of the absent spouse and the nature and extent of
the inquiries made by present spouse.
In this case, the respondent failed to present a witness other than Barangay Captain
Juan Magat. The respondent even failed to present any other person from whom he allegedly
made inquiries about Lea to corroborate his testimony. On the other hand, the respondent
admitted that when he returned to the house of his parents-in-law on February 14, 1995, his
father-in-law told him that Lea had just been there but that she left without notice. What is so
worrisome is that, the respondent failed to make inquiries from his parents-in-law regarding
Leas whereabouts before filing his petition in the RTC. It could have enhanced the credibility of
the respondent had he made inquiries from his parents-in-law about Leas whereabouts
considering that Leas father was the owner of Radio DYMS.
The respondent did report and seek the help of the local police authorities and the NBI to
locate Lea, but it was only an afterthought. He did so only after the OSG filed its notice to
dismiss his petition in the RTC. Hence, respondent failed to prove that he had a well-founded
belief before he filed his petition in the RTC that his spouse Lea Julaton was already dead.

Case No. 39

REPUBLIC v. TANGO
G.R. No. 161062, July 31, 2009
QUISUMBING, J.:
FACTS: In 1987, Ferventino and Maria were married in civil rites before then Mayor Ignacio
Bunye of Muntinlupa City. None of Marias relatives witnessed the ceremony as they were
opposed their relationship. The two had only spent a night together and had been intimate once
when Maria told Ferventino that she and her family will soon be leaving for the United States of
America (USA). Maria assured Ferventino, however, that she will file a petition so he can live
with her in the USA. In the event that said petition is denied, she promised to return to the
Philippines to live with him. On March 13, 1987, Maria and her family flew to Seattle, USA.
Ferventino alleges that Maria kept in touch for a year before she stopped responding to his
letters. Out of resentment, he burned all the letters Maria wrote him. He claims to have forgotten
her address since.
Ferventino recounts the efforts he made to find Maria. Upon inquiry from the latters uncle,
Antonio Ledesma, in Las Pias, Ferventino learned that even Marias relatives were unaware of
her whereabouts. He also solicited the assistance of a friend in Texas, Capt. Luis Aris of the
U.S. Air Force, but to no avail. Finally, he sought the aid of his parents Antonio and Eusebia in
Los Angeles, and his aunt Anita Castro-Mayor in Seattle. Like, Ledesma though, their attempts
to find Maria proved fruitless. The next 14 years went by without any news of Maria.
On the belief that his wife had died, Ferventino filed a verified petition before the Ligao City RTC
for the declaration of presumptive death of Maria within the contemplation of Article 41 of the
Family Code.
RTC: granted the petition and declared Maria presumptively dead.
OSG filed a Notice of Appeal for the Republic.
CA: Treated the case as an ordinary appealed case under Rule 41 of the Rules of Court,
affirmed the RTCs Order.
ISSUE: 1. Whether Tango has established a basis to form a well-founded belief that his absent
spouse is already dead.
2. Whether the OSG erred in filing a Notice of Appeal, and thus, making a serious
procedural lapse, had made the decision of the RTC become final.

HELD: 1. Yes. But the Supreme Court did not dwell on the substantive portion of the case
because the decision of the trial court had long become final due to the procedural lapse made
by the OSG and the other courts.
2. Yes. The cases filed under Art. 41, FC are summary proceedings. By express
provision of law (See Arts. 253 and 247, FC), the judgment of the court in a summary
proceeding shall be immediately final and executory. As a matter of course, it follows that no
appeal can be had of the trial courts judgment in a summary proceeding for the declaration of
presumptive death of an absent spouse under Article 41 of the Family Code. It goes without
saying, however, that an aggrieved party may file a petition for certiorari to question abuse of
discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction. Such petition should be filed in the Court of Appeals
in accordance with the Doctrine of Hierarchy of Courts. To be sure, even if the Courts original
jurisdiction to issue a writ of certiorari is concurrent with the RTCs and the Court of Appeals in
certain cases, such concurrence does not sanction an unrestricted freedom of choice of court
forum. From the decision of the Court of Appeals, the losing party may then file a petition for
review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court with the Supreme Court.
In the case before us, petitioner committed a serious procedural lapse when it filed a notice of
appeal in the CA instead of a petition for certiorari. The RTC equally erred in giving due course
to said appeal and ordering the transmittal of the records of the case to the appellate court. By
no means did the Court of Appeals acquire jurisdiction to review the judgment of the RTC which,
by express provision of law, was immediately final and executory.
Adding to the confusion, the CA entertained the appeal and treated the same as an ordinary
appeal under Rule 41 of the Rules of Court. As it were, the Court of Appeals committed grave
reversible error when it failed to dismiss the erroneous appeal as the judgment was not
appealable.
Before us, petitioner filed a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court.
But, even if petitioner used the correct mode of appeal at this level, the hands of the Court are
tied. Without a doubt, the decision of the trial court had long become final.

FC Case No. 40

Celerina Santos v. Ricardo Santos


A bigamous subsequent marriage may be considered valid when the following are present: 1.)
The prior spouse had been absent for four consecutive years; The spouse present has a wellfounded belief that the absent spouse was already dead; There must be a summary proceeding
for the declaration of presumptive death of the absent spouse; and There is a court declaration
of presumptive death of the absent spouse.
Facts:
In his petition for declaration of absence or presumptive death, Ricardo alleged that he and
Celerina rented an apartment somewhere in San Juan, Metro Manila; after they had gotten
married on June 18, 1980. After a year, they moved to Tarlac City. They were engaged in the
buy and sell business.
Ricardo claimed that their business did not prosper. As a result, Celerina convinced him to allow
her to work as a domestic helper in Hong Kong. Ricardo initially refused but because of
Celerina's insistence, he allowed her to work abroad. She allegedly applied in an employment
agency in Ermita, Manila, in February 1995. She left Tarlac two months after and was never
heard from again.
Ricardo further alleged that he exerted efforts to locate Celerina. He went to Celerina's parents
in Cubao, Quezon City, but they, too, did not know their daughter's whereabouts. He also
inquired about her from other relatives and friends, but no one gave him any information
Ricardo claimed that it was almost 12 years from the date of his Regional Trial Court petition
since Celerina left. He believed that she had passed away.
Celerina claimed that she learned about Ricardo's petition only sometime in October 2008 when
she could no longer avail the remedies of new trial, appeal, petition for relief, or other
appropriate remedies.
RTC Tarlac City: Declared petitioner Celerina J. Santos (Celerina) presumptively dead after her
husband, respondent Ricardo T. Santos (Ricardo), had filed a petition for declaration of absence
or presumptive death for the purpose of remarriage on June 15, 2007
On November 17, 2008, Celerina filed a petition for annulment of judgment before the Court of
Appeals on the grounds of extrinsic fraud and lack of jurisdiction. She argued that she was

deprived her day in court when Ricardo, despite his knowledge of her true residence,
misrepresented to the court that she was a resident of Tarlac City.
Celerina referred to a joint affidavit executed by their children to support her contention that
Ricardo made false allegations in his petition
Celerina also argued that the court did not acquire jurisdiction over Ricardo's petition because it
had never been published in a newspaper. She added that the Office of the Solicitor General
and the Provincial Prosecutor's Office were not furnished copies of Ricardo's petition
CA: Dismissed Celerina's petition for annulment of judgment for being a wrong mode of remedy.
According to the Court of Appeals, the proper remedy was to file a sworn statement before the
civil registry, declaring her reappearance in accordance with Article 42 of the Family Code.
Issue:
1.) Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in dismissing Celerina's petition for annulment
of judgment for being a wrong remedy for a fraudulently obtained judgment declaring
presumptive death
2.) Whether or not the subsequent marriage is bigamous on the ground that the subject
marriage was contracted in bad faith
Held:
1st: Yes, the Court of Appeals erred in dismissing Celerina's petition for annulment of judgment
for being a wrong remedy for a fraudulently obtained judgment declaring presumptive death.
Annulment of judgment is the remedy when the Regional Trial Court's judgment, order, or
resolution has become final, and the "remedies of new trial, appeal, petition for relief (or other
appropriate remedies) are no longer available through no fault of the petitioner. The grounds for
annulment of judgment are extrinsic fraud and lack of jurisdiction. The court cited Stilianopulos
v. City of Legaspi which described how Extrinsic Fraud can be committed and according to the
Court It is extrinsic or collateral when a litigant commits acts outside of the trial which prevents a
parly from having a real contest, or from presenting all of his case, such that there is no fair
submission of the controversy. Celerina alleged in her petition for annulment of judgment that
there was fraud when Ricardo deliberately made false allegations in the court with respect to
her residence. Ricardo also falsely claimed that she was absent for 12 years. There was also no
publication of the notice of hearing of Ricardo's petition in a newspaper of general
circulation. Celerina claimed that because of these, she was deprived of notice and opportunity
to oppose Ricardo's petition to declare her presumptively dead. Celerina alleged that all the
facts supporting Ricardo's petition for declaration of presumptive death were false. Celerina
further claimed that the court did not acquire jurisdiction because the Office of the Solicitor
General and the Provincial Prosecutor's Office were not given copies of Ricardo's petition.
These are allegations of extrinsic fraud and lack of jurisdiction. Celerina alleged in her petition
with the Court of Appeals sufficient ground/s for annulment of judgment.
2nd: The Court remanded the case to the Court of Appeals for determination of the existence
of extrinsic fraud, grounds for nullity/annulment of the first marriage, and the merits of the
petition. The Court in this case merely stated the Conditions to be complied with before Article
42 of the Family Code may be applied. The Conditions are: (1) the non-existence of a judgment
annulling the previous marriage or declaring it void ab initio; (2) recording in the civil registry of

the residence of the parties to the subsequent marriage of the sworn statement of fact and
circumstances of reappearance; (3) due notice to the spouses of the subsequent marriage of
the fact of reappearance; and (4) the fact of reappearance must either be undisputed or
judicially determined. The existence of these conditions means that reappearance does not
always immediately cause the subsequent marriage's termination. Reappearance of the absent
or presumptively dead spouse will cause the termination of the subsequent marriage only when
all the conditions enumerated in the Family Code are present.

FC Case No. 41
G.R. No. 178044

January 19, 2011

ALAIN M. DIO , Petitioner,


vs.
MA. CARIDAD L. DIO, Respondent.
FACTS:
January 1998 petitioner and respondent got married. On May 2001, petitioner filed an
action for Declaration of Niullity of Marriagw against respondent citing psychological
incapacity under article 36. Petitioner alleged that respondent failed in her marital
obligation to give love and support to him, and had abandoned her responsibility to the
family, choosing instead to go on shopping sprees and gallivanting with her friends that
depleted the family assets. Petitioner further alleged that respondent was not faithful,
and would at times become violent and hurt him. The trial court declared their marriage
void ab initio. The court ruled that A DECREE OF ABSOLUTE NULLITY OF MARRIAGE
shall only be issued upon compliance with Article[s] 50 and 51 of the Family Code. It later
altered it to A DECREE OF ABSOLUTE NULLITY OF MARRIAGE shall be issued after
liquidation, partition and distribution of the parties properties under Article 147 of the
Family Code.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the trial court erred when it ordered that a decree of absolute nullity of marriage
shall only be issued after liquidation, partition, and distribution of the parties properties under
Article 147 of the Family Code.
HELD:
The court erred. The Court has ruled in Valdes v. RTC, Branch 102, Quezon City that in a void
marriage, regardless of its cause, the property relations of the parties during the period of

cohabitation is governed either by Article 147 or Article 148 of the Family Code.7 Article 147 of
the Family Code applies to union of parties who are legally capacitated and not barred by any
impediment to contract marriage, but whose marriage is nonetheless void, such as petitioner
and respondent in the case before the Court.
For Article 147 of the Family Code to apply, the following elements must be present:
1. The man and the woman must be capacitated to marry each other;
2.
They
live
exclusively
with
each
other
as
husband
and
wife;
and
3. Their union is without the benefit of marriage, or their marriage is void
All these elements are present in this case and there is no question that Article 147 of the
Family Code applies to the property relations between petitioner and respondent.
It is clear from Article 50 of the Family Code that Section 19(1) of the Rule applies only to
marriages which are declared void ab initio or annulled by final judgment under Articles 40 and
45 of the Family Code. In short, Article 50 of the Family Code does not apply to marriages which
are declared void ab initio under Article 36 of the Family Code, which should be declared void
without waiting for the liquidation of the properties of the parties.
Since the property relations of the parties in art 40 and 45 are governed by absolute community
of property or conjugal partnership of gains, there is a need to liquidate, partition and distribute
the properties before a decree of annulment could be issued. That is not the case for annulment
of marriage under Article 36 of the Family Code because the marriage is governed by the
ordinary rules on co-ownership.
In this case, petitioners marriage to respondent was declared void under Article 3615 of the
Family Code and not under Article 40 or 45. Thus, what governs the liquidation of properties
owned in common by petitioner and respondent are the rules on co-ownership. In Valdes, the
Court ruled that the property relations of parties in a void marriage during the period of
cohabitation are governed either by Article 147 or Article 148 of the Family Code. The rules on
co-ownership apply and the properties of the spouses should be liquidated in accordance with
the Civil Code provisions on co-ownership. Under Article 496 of the Civil Code, Partition may
be made by agreement between the parties or by judicial proceedings. x x x. It is not necessary
to liquidate the properties of the spouses in the same proceeding for declaration of nullity of
marriage.

Case No. 42
Topic: Principle of conspiracy may be applied suppletorily to R.A. No. 9262
Go-Tan vs. Spouses Tan
G.R. No. 168852, September 30, 2008
Justice Austria-Martinez
Third Division
Facts:
Sharica Mari L. Go-Tan and Steven L. Tan were married in 1999 and out of their union two
female children were born. However, on January 2005 Petitioner Sharica filed a Petition with
Prayer for the Issuance of a Temporary Protective Order against Steven and her parents-in-law,
Spouses Perfecto C. Tan and Juanita L. Tan (respondents) before the RTC. She alleged that
Steven, in conspiracy with his parents were causing verbal, psychological and economic abuses
upon her in violation of Sec. 5, par. (e)(2)(3)(4), (h)(5), and (i) of R.A 9262 (Anti-Violence Against
Women and Their Children Act of 2004)
Respondents filed a Motion to Dismiss with Opposition to the Issuance of Permanent Protection
Order Ad Cautelam and contend that the RTC lacked jurisdiction over their persons since as
parents-in-law of the petitioner, they were not covered by R.A. No. 9262.
RTC issued a Resolution dismissing the case on the ground that respondents being the
parents-in-law of the petitioner were not covered as respondents under R.A. No. 9262.
Issue:
Whether or not respondents-spouses Tan as parents-in-law of petitioner may be included in the
Petition for the Issuance of a Protective Order in accordance with R.A. No. 9262.
Ruling:
Yes. The Court rules in favor of the petitioner. It held that while the provisions of R.A. No. 9262
provides that the offender be related or connected to the victim by marriage, former marriage, or
a sexual or dating relationship, it does not preclude the application of the principle of conspiracy
under the RPC. Section 47 of R.A. No. 9262, has expressly provide for the suppletory of the
RPC.Hence, legal principles developed from the Penal Code may be applied in a
supplementary capacity to crimes punished under special laws, such as R.A. No. 9262, in which
the special law is silent on a particular matter.

However, conspiracy is an evidentiary matter which should be threshed out in a full-blown trial
on the merits and cannot be determined in the present petition since this Court is not a trier of
facts. It is thus premature for petitioner to argue evidentiary matters since this controversy is
centered only on the determination of whether respondents may be included in a petition under
R.A. No. 9262. The presence or absence of conspiracy can be best passed upon after a trial on
the merits. Considering the Courts ruling that the principle of conspiracy may be applied
suppletorily to R.A. No. 9262, the Court will no longer delve on whether respondents may be
considered indispensable or necessary parties.

FC Case No. 44
G.R. No. 170701
January 22, 2014
RALPH P. TUA, Petitioner,
vs.
HON. CESAR A. MANGROBANG, Presiding Judge, Branch 22, Regional Trial
Court, Imus, Cavite; and ROSSANA HONRADO-TUA, Respondents.
PERALTA, J.:
Facts: On May 20, 2005, respondent Rossana Honrado-Tua (respondent) filed with the
Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Imus, Cavite a Verified Petition2 for herself and in behalf of her
minor children, Joshua Raphael, Jesse Ruth Lois, and J ezreel Abigail, for the issuance of a
protection order, pursuant to Republic Act (RA) 9262 or the Anti-Violence Against Women and
their Children Act of 2004, against her husband, petitioner Ralph Tua. The case was docketed
as Civil Case No. 0464-05 and raffled-off to Branch 22. Respondent claimed that she and her
children had suffered from petitioners abusive conduct; that petitioner had threatened to cause
her and the children physical harm for the purpose of controlling her actions or decisions; that
she was actually deprived of custody and access to her minor children; and, that she was
threatened to be deprived of her and her childrens financial support.
Respondent and petitioner were married on January 10, 1998 in Makati City. They have three
children, namely, Joshua Raphael born on February 9, 1999, Jesse Ruth Lois, born on June 27,
2000, and Jezreel Abigail, born on December 25, 2001. In her Affidavit3 attached to the petition,
respondent claimed, among others, that: there was a time when petitioner went to her room and
cocked his gun and pointed the barrel of his gun to his head as he wanted to convince her not to
proceed with the legal separation case she filed; she hid her fears although she was scared;
there was also an instance when petitioner fed her children with the fried chicken that her
youngest daughter had chewed and spat out; in order to stop his child from crying, petitioner
would threaten him with a belt; when she told petitioner that she felt unsafe and insecure with
the latter's presence and asked him to stop coming to the house as often as he wanted or she
would apply for a protection order, petitioner got furious and threatened her of withholding his
financial support and even held her by the nape and pushed her to lie flat on the bed; and, on
May 4, 2005, while she was at work, petitioner with companions went to her new home and

forcibly took the children and refused to give them back to her. RTC granted the prayer and
issued the Temporary Protection Order (TPO).
Petitioner denied the allegations of the respondent and alleged that it was the petitioner who
verbally abused and threatened him whenever their childrens stay with him was extended.
Petitioner challenged the TPO by filing a petition for certiorari with prayer for the issuance of the
preliminary injunction. The CA denied the petition and upheld the validity of the TPO by the
RTC.
Issue: WON the CA erred in upholding the TPO issued by the RTC.
Held: A protection order is an order issued to prevent further acts of violence against women
and their children, their family or household members, and to grant other necessary reliefs. Its
purpose is to safeguard the offended parties from further harm, minimize any disruption in their
daily life and facilitate the opportunity and ability to regain control of their life.
The scope of reliefs in protection orders is broadened to ensure that the victim or offended party
is afforded all the remedies necessary to curtail access by a perpetrator to the victim. This
serves to safeguard the victim from greater risk of violence; to accord the victim and any
designated family or household member safety in the family residence, and to prevent the
perpetrator from committing acts that jeopardize the employment and support of the victim. It
also enables the court to award temporary custody of minor children to protect the children from
violence, to prevent their abduction by the perpetrator and to ensure their financial support.
The grant of a TPO ex parte cannot, therefore, be challenged as violative of the right to due
process. Just like a writ of preliminary attachment which is issued without notice and hearing
because the time in which the hearing will take could be enough to enable the defendant to
abscond or dispose of his property, in the same way, the victim of VAWC may already have
suffered harrowing experiences in the hands of her tormentor, and possibly even death, if notice
and hearing were required before such acts could be prevented. It is a constitutional
commonplace that the ordinary requirements of procedural due process must yield to the
necessities of protecting vital public interests, among which is protection of women and children
from violence and threats to their personal safety and security.
In this case, the alleged acts of petitioner among others, i.e., he cocked the gun and pointed the
same to his head in order to convince respondent not to proceed with the legal separation case;
feeding his other children with the food which another child spat out; and threatening the crying
child with a belt to stop him from crying which was repeatedly done; and holding respondent by
her nape when he got furious that she was asking him not to come often to their conjugal home
and hold office thereat after their agreed separation and threatening her of withholding half of
the financial support for the kids, while not conclusive, are enough bases for the issuance of a
TPO.

FC Case no. 45 (RA 9262; Spousal Support)


REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, represented by the Armed Forces of the Philippines
Finance Center (AFPFC), Petitioner, vs DAISY R. YAHON., Respondent. G.R. No. 201043
June 16, 2014
Facts: S/Sgt. Charles A. Yahon (S/Sgt. Yahon) is a retired enlisted personnel of the Philippine
Army. Respondent Daisy Yahon is his wife. Respondent filed a petition for the issuance of
protection order under the provisions of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 9262, otherwise known as the
"Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004," against her husband.
The RTC initially issued a TPO ordering Sgt. Yahon to enjoin from threatening to commit or
committing further acts of physical abuse aginst the petitioner. He was likewise ordered to stay
away from Daisy, her residence or place of work. Financial support was also ordered. Upon
failing to appear in subsequent hearings, he was ordered in default. The trial continued ex-parte.
The RTC then rendered a decision against Sgt. Yahon. The court found that respondent must
be permanently protected after enduring physical, emotional, verbal and psychological abuse
from Sgt. Yahon. A Permanent Protection Order was issued granting a P4,000 spousal support
to the respondent. 50% of whatever benefits or claims Sgt Yahon had from the government
were ordered to be automatically deducted in favour of respondent.
Petitioner AFPFC manifested (by way of special appearance) that while it has initially
discharged its obligation under the TPO, the RTC had not acquired jurisdiction over the military
institution due to lack of summons, and hence the AFPFC cannot be bound by the said court
order. Also, petitioner argued that under the GSIS Act of 1997 (RA 8291) funds or properties
(including benefits) cannot be subject to any court processes such as a TPO/PPO. Such
exemption was likewise incorporated in the Rules of Court. Respondent however argued that
RA 9262 enumerates reliefs that may be included in TPO, PPO or BPO issued by courts.
Among these reliefs was withholding salary or income from an employer which thus allows the
court to enjoin the petitioner from releasing the benefits to Sgt Yahon.
ISSUE: Whether petitioner military institution may be ordered to automatically deduct a
percentage from the retirement benefits of its enlisted personnel, and to give the same directly

to the latters lawful wife as spousal support in compliance with a protection order issued by the
RTC pursuant to R.A. No. 9262.
HELD: The SC ruled that R.A. No. 9262, a later enactment (compared to the GSIS Act), should
be construed as laying down an exception to the general rule that retirement benefits are
exempt from execution. The law itself declares that the court shall order the withholding of a
percentage of the income or salary of the respondent by the employer, which shall be
automatically remitted directly to the woman "[n]otwithstanding other laws to the contrary.
Section 8(g) of R.A. No. 9262 used the general term "employer," which includes in its coverage
the military institution, S/Sgt. Yahons employer. Where the law does not distinguish, courts
should not distinguish. Thus, Section 8(g) applies to all employers, whether private or
government. The relief provided in Section 8(g) thus fulfills the objective of restoring the dignity
of women who are victims of domestic violence and provide them continued protection against
threats to their personal safety and security.
Obiter: RA 9262 is constitutional .

FC Case No. 46
Gen Topic: Legal Separation

Mario Siochi vs Alfredo Gozon et al


March 18, 2010
CARPIO, J.
SECOND DIVISION
Facts:
On December 23 1991, Elvira filed with the Cavite RTC a petition for legal separation against
her husband Alfredo. On January 2, 1992 Elvira filed a notice of lis pendens which was
annotated on TCT# 5357. On August 31 1993, pending the case of legal separation, Alfredo and
Mario entered into an Agreement to Buy and Sell. Among the stipulations in the agreement were
the that Alfredo would: (1) secure an Affidavit from Elvira that the property is Alfredos exclusive
property and to annotate the Agreement at the back of TCT No. 5357; (2) secure the approval of
the Cavite RTC to exclude the property from the legal separation case; and (3) secure the
removal of the notice of lis pendens pertaining to the said case and annotated on TCT No.
5357. However, despite repeated demands from Mario, Alfredo failed to comply with these
stipulations. After paying the P5 million earnest money as partial payment of the purchase price,
Mario took possession of the property in September 1993. On 6 September 1993, the
Agreement was annotated on TCT No. 5357.
On June 29, 1994 the Cavite RTC granted the decree of legal separation between Elvira and
Alfredo without dissolution of their marriage bond. The conjugal partnership of gains of the
spouses was declared dissolved and liquidated. Being the offended spouse, Alfredo is deprived

of his share in the net profits and the same is awarded to their chiled Winifred whose custody is
awared to Elvira. As regards the property, Cavite RTC held that it is deemed conjugal property.
On August 22, 1994 Alfredo executed a Deed of Donation over the property in favor of their
daughther Winifred. The RD of Malabon cancelled TCT# 5357 and issued TCT# M-10508 in the
name of Winifred without any annotations. Alfredo then subsequently sold the property on
October 26, 1993, via SPA, to Inter-Dimensional Realty. The RD of Malabon then cancelled
TCT# M-10508 and issued TCT# M-10976 to IDRI. Mario then filed with the Malabon Regional
Trial Court (Malabon RTC) a complaint for Specific Performance and Damages, Annulment of
Donation and Sale, with Preliminary Mandatory and Prohibitory Injunction and/or Temporary
Restraining Order.
Malabon RTC rendered a decision stating that the Agreement between Mario and Alfredo is
approved excluding the property and rights of defendant Elvira Robles-Gozon to the undivided
one-half share in the conjugal property subject of this case. The Register of Deeds of Malabon,
Metro Manila was ordered to cancel Certificate of Title Nos. 10508 "in the name of Winifred
Gozon" and M-10976 "in the name of Inter-Dimensional Realty, Inc.," and to restore Transfer
Certificate of Title No. 5357 "in the name of Alfredo Gozon, married to Elvira Robles" with the
Agreement to Buy and Sell dated 31 August 1993 fully annotated therein is hereby ordered
On Appeal the CA affirmed the Malabon RTCs decision with modification that states that the
sale of the property between Mario and Alfredo is declared null and void because the
conveyance was done without the consent of Elvira.
Mario and IDRI appealed the decision of the CA. In Marios petitions, he stated that the
Agreement should be treated as continuing offer which may be perfected by the acceptance of
the other spouse before the offer is withdrawn. Since Elvira agrees to the sale Mario prays for
the Court to direct the spouses to execute a Deed of Absolute Sale over the property.
Meanwhile, IDRI alleges that it is a buyer in good faith and for value. It prays that the Court
should uphold the validity of TCT M-10976 over the property.
Ruling:

The SC finds no merit on the petitions. This case involves the conjugal property of Alfredo and
Elvira. Since the disposition of the property occurred after the effectivity of the Family Code, the
applicable law is the Family Code. Article 124 of the Family Code. In this case, Alfredo was the
sole administrator of the property because Elvira, with whom Alfredo was separated in fact, was
unable to participate in the administration of the conjugal property. However, as sole
administrator of the property, Alfredo still cannot sell the property without the written consent of
Elvira or the authority of the court. Without such consent or authority, the sale is void. The
absence of the consent of one of the spouse renders the entire sale void, including the portion
of the conjugal property pertaining to the spouse who contracted the sale. Even if the other
spouse actively participated in negotiating for the sale of the property, that other spouses
written consent to the sale is still required by law for its validity. The Agreement entered into by
Alfredo and Mario was without the written consent of Elvira. Thus, the Agreement is entirely
void.
However, we disagree with the finding of the Court of Appeals that the one-half undivided share
of Alfredo in the property was already forfeited in favor of his daughter Winifred, based on the
ruling of the Cavite RTC in the legal separation case. The Court of Appeals misconstrued the
ruling of the Cavite RTC that Alfredo, being the offending spouse, is deprived of his share in the
net profits and the same is awarded to Winifred. The Cavite RTC ruling finds support in the
Family Code Art. 63 and Art. 43. The termination of the subsequent marriage referred to in the
preceding Article shall produce the following effects :x x x(2) The absolute community of
property or the conjugal partnership, as the case may be, shall be dissolved and liquidated, but
if either spouse contracted said marriage in bad faith, his or her share of the net profits of the
community property or conjugal partnership property shall be forfeited in favor of the common
children or, if there are none, the children of the guilty spouse by a previous marriage or, in
default of children, the innocent spouse;
Thus, among the effects of the decree of legal separation is that the conjugal partnership is
dissolved and liquidated and the offending spouse would have no right to any share of the net
profits earned by the conjugal partnership. It is only Alfredos share in the net profits which is
forfeited in favor of Winifred. Article 102(4) of the Family Code provides that "[f]or purposes of
computing the net profits subject to forfeiture in accordance with Article 43, No. (2) and 63, No.
(2), the said profits shall be the increase in value between the market value of the community
property at the time of the celebration of the marriage and the market value at the time of its

dissolution." Clearly, what is forfeited in favor of Winifred is not Alfredos share in the conjugal
partnership property but merely in the net profits of the conjugal partnership property.