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Article IV Sec. 2 of the 1987 Philippine Constitution

Natural-born citizens are those who are citizens of the Philippines from birth
without having to perform any act to acquire or perfect their Philippine
citizenship. Those who elect Philippine citizenship in accordance with paragraph
(3), Section 1 hereof shall be deemed natural-born citizens.
[3] Those born before January 17, 1973, of Filipino mothers, who elect
Philippine citizenship upon reaching the age of majority
Article IV Sec. 3 of the 1987 Philippine Constitution
Philippine citizenship may be lost or reacquired in the manner provided by law.
Article 49 of the New Civil Code
Naturalization and the loss and reacquisition of citizenship of the Philippines
are governed by special laws.
Naturalization is the process of acquiring the citizenship of another country.
Strict sense
Loose and broad sense
It is a judicial process where
It may mean not only the judicial
formalities of the law have to be
process but also the acquisition of
complied with including a judicial
another citizenship by such acts as
hearing and approval of the petition.
marriage to a citizen, and the exercise
of the option to elect a particular
Modes of Naturalization
a. Direct Naturalization
i. Judicial Process: Commonwealth Act No. 475 as amended by Republic Act
No. 530
ii. Legislative Process: Philippine Citizenship conferred by Congress
iii. Administrative Process: Republic Act No. 9139
b. Derivative Naturalization
i. Wife of naturalized husband
ii. Minor children of naturalized parents
iii. Alien wife of a natural-born or naturalized citizen
Attributes of Naturalization
(a) Citizenship is not a right, it is a privilege.
The Naturalization Law grants to aliens the privilege of obtaining Philippine
citizenship under certain conditions; the conditions must be complied with.
(Kin v. Republic)
The burden is on the applicant to show clearly that he has complied with
every condition that the law imposes

(b) The requisite conditions for naturalization are laid down by Congress; courts cannot
change or modify them.
Strict compliance with the requirements are essential
(c) Only foreigners may be naturalized.
(d) Just as a state may denationalize its own citizens, so may naturalization be revoked, by
cancellation of the certificate of naturalization.
(e) Naturalization demands allegiance to our Constitution, laws, and government.
(f) Naturalization is a proceeding in rem.
Qualifications for Naturalization
Our Naturalization Law requires the petitioner for naturalization to have ALL the
qualifications and NONE of the disqualifications referred to therein. (Ly Hong v.
Rep., L-14630, Sept. 30, 1960)
Petitioner himself must take the witness stand.
The sworn assertions made by him must be supported by the affidavits of at least
two (2) credible witnesses as well as their sworn testimony.
Qualifications must be possessed at the time of application for naturalization.
1. Age
2. Ten years residence
3. Good morals and conducts and belief in the principles underlying the Philippine
4. Real estate or occupation
5. Language requisites
6. Enrollment of minor children of school age
Not less than 18 years of age on the date of hearing of petition (as amended by RA 6809)
Minors do not have to file a petition for naturalization if their father is naturalized.
(Dee v. Republic, L-3683, Jan. 28, 1953)
The age requirement is as of the date of the hearing of the petition; not the date of
the declaration of intention, nor even the date of the filing of the petition.
The age of majority in the country of the petitioner does not matter.
2ND QUALIFICATION: Ten years residence
Resided in the Philippines for a continuous period of not less than 10 years
The residence contemplated is not mere legal residence, but ACTUAL and
SUBSTANTIAL residencein order for the purpose of the law be obtained.
To enable government and the community to observe the conduct of the applicant
To ensure his having imbibed sufficiently the principles and the spirit of our
The 10 year residency may be reduced to five years, if:


Honorably held office in the Philippines;

Established new industry or introduced a useful invention;
Married to a Filipino woman;
Engaged as teacher in Philippine public or private school not established for
exclusive instruction to a particular nationality or race, or in any branches of
education or industry for a period not less than 2 years; and
5) Born in the Philippines
Although the residence both for 10 years or five years must be actual, substantive,
and continuous still physical presence is not necessarily required for the entire
period of residence required of the petitioner.
1) Not every absence is fatal to to continuous residence.
2) Temporary absence must be of short duration.
Good morals and conducts and belief in the principles underlying the Philippine Constitution
He must be of good moral character, and believe in the principles underlying the Philippine
Constitution, and must have conducted himself in a proper and irreproachable manner
during the entire period of his residence in the Philippines in his relation with the constituted
government as well as with the community in which he is living
Lack of criminal conviction for a crime involving moral turpitude does not mean that
the petitioner is of good moral character.
GAMBLES in violation of Arts. 195-199 of Revised Penal Code = lacks good moral
Proper and irreproachable conduct: must be determined not by the law of the
country of which the petitioner is a citizen but by the standard of morality prevalent
in this country, and this in turn, by the religious beliefs and social concepts existing
Morally irreproachable conduct imposes a higher standard of morality than good
moral character.
Examples of improper conduct:
Illicit and open cohabitation with a woman other than ones own wife
Failure to register oneself as an alien even of he erroneously believed himself to be
already a Filipino
Failure to file an income tax return
Suppression of a material fact in the petition, a fact which, if revealed, would result
in the denial of the application
Desertion of a common-law wife and children simply to be able to marry another
Engaging in the retail business in violation of the Retail Trade Nationalization Law
Frequenting of gambling dens and playing prohibited games
An attempt to circumvent the Constitution by purchasing a parcel of land thru his
Pleading guilty to a violation of the Price Tag Law simply to avoid troublesome court
proceedings betrays a lack of faith in the administration of justice in this country

Offering P500 to a municipal mayor for the repeals of a certain municipal ordinance
Falsely stating that he had never previously files any petition for naturalization
Conducting a business without a renewal of the required permit
Examples that will not prevent naturalization
Justifiable discrepancy in the use of petitioners surname
Running a properly licensed cabaret
Belief in the principles underlying the Constitution
The law requires belief and not the ability to enumerate them expressly
A belief in the principles embodied in Philippine laws does not necessarily mean a
belief in the principles of the Philippine Constitution
Failure to state the customs, traditions, and ideals of the Filipinos which the
applicant desires to embrace is not a fatal defect
The possibility that the applicant expects to receive certain benefits from
naturalization should not prevent approval of the petition
4th QUALIFICATION: Real estate or occupation
Owns real estate in the Philippines not less than P5,000 in value; or has some lucrative
trade, profession or lawful occupation that can support himself and his family
In the absence of credible proof regarding allegations of property ownership, the
Court will be constrained to conclude that petitioner has not met the requirement of
ownership of property.
One good proof is the certificate of assessment or a declaration of real estate
property ownership.
The requirement as to the ownership of real estate in the Philippines OR the
possession of some lucrative trade, profession, or lawful occupation is in the
The alien may present evidence that he has some known lucrative trade,
profession, or lawful occupation.
Lucrative: substantial or or gainful employment or the obtaining of tangible receipts
5th QUALIFICATION: Language requisites
Speaks and writes Filipino or English and any principal Philippine dialect (as amended by
Sec. 6 Art. XIV)
A deaf-mute cannot speak, therefore, he cannot be naturalized
Faultless, fluent, and idiomatic language is not essential
Sufficient that he understands them
Any dialect spoken by a substantial portion of the population of the country comes
under the category of principal Filipino language.
Enrollment of minor children of school age

For the children of the applicant (prospective Filipino citizens themselves) to learn
and imbibe the customs, traditions, and deals of Filipino
Preparatory to a life of responsible and law abiding citizen
Compliance with this must be competently and affirmatively shown, otherwise, the
application will have to be denied.
All the children should have been enrolled; failure to enroll even one of them will
result in the denial of the petition.
Disqualifications for Naturalization
Sec. 4. Naturalization Law. The following cannot be naturalized as Philippine
a) Persons opposed to organized government or affiliated with any association or
group of persons who uphold and teach doctrines opposing all organized governments
b) Persons defending or teaching the propriety of violence, personal assault, or
assassination for the success and predominance of their ideas
c) Polygamists or believers in the practice of polygamy
d) Persons convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude
e) Persons suffering from mental alienation or incurable contagious diseases
f) Persons who, during the period of their residence in the Philippines have not
mingled socially with the Filipinos, or who have not evinced a sincere desire to learn and
embrace the customs, traditions, and ideals of the Filipinos
g) Citizens or subjects of nations with whom the United Sates and the Philippines
are at war
h) Citizens or subjects of a foreign country other than the United States,
laws do not grant Filipinos the right to become naturalized citizens or
Burden of proof as to qualifications: applicant
Burden of proof as to disqualifications: state
Mere belief in polygamy without practicing it is enough to disqualify
Moral turpitude is that which shows in a person the presence of injustice,
dishonesty, immodesty, or immorality
In crimes involving moral turpitude, it must not be merely mala prohibita, but the act
itself must be inherently immoral.
The disease must be BOTH incurable and contagious
The law demands that the social mingling takes place during the entire period of
residence in the Philippines in order to preclude any temporary sporadic social
intercourse set up only for naturalization purposes.
The petitioner must prove that his country allows the naturalization of Filipino