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Civil Law Ruling:

FILIPINA Y. SY, petitioner, v. THE The date of celebration of their marriage on


HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS, November 15, 1973, is admitted both by
respondent. petitioner and private respondent. The
pieces of evidence on record showed that on
G.R. No. 127263. the day of the marriage ceremony, there was
April 12, 2000. no marriage license. A marriage license is a
formal requirement; its absence renders the
Facts: marriage void ab initio. In addition, the
marriage contract shows that the marriage
On November 15, 1973 Filipina Sy and
license, numbered 6237519, was issued in
Fernando Sy got married at the Church of
Carmona, Cavite, yet, neither petitioner nor
Our Lady of Lourdes in Quezon City. After
private respondent ever resided in Carmona.
some time, Fernando left their conjugal
dwelling. Two children were born out of the The marriage license was issued on
marriage. Frederick, their son went to his September 17,1974, almost one year after
father’s residence. Filipina filed for legal the ceremony took place on November 15,
separation. 1973. The ineluctable conclusion is that the
marriage was indeed contracted without a
The Trial Court dissolved their conjugal
marriage license. Under Article 80 of the Civil
partnership of gains and granted the custody
Code. those solemnized without a marriage
of their children to her.
license, save marriages of exceptional
Later on, Filipina was punched at the character, are void ab initio. This is clearly
different parts of her body and was even applicable in this case.
choked by him when she started spanking
The remaining issue on the psychological
their son when the latter ignored her while
incapacity of private respondent need no
she was talking to him.
longer detains the Court. It is mooted by the
The Trial Court convicted him for slight conclusion that the marriage of petitioner to
physical injuries only. A new action for legal respondent is void ab initio for lack of a
separation was granted by repeated physical marriage license at the time their marriage
violence and sexual infidelity. Filipina then was solemnized.
filed for the declaration of absolute nullity of
Aranes vs. Judge Occiano
their marriage citing psychological
incapacity. AM No. MTJ 02-1309,
The Trial Court and Appellate Court denied April 11, 2002
her petition. On her petition to this Court, she
assailed for the first time that there was no FACTS:
marriage license during their marriage. Petitioner Mercedita Mata Aranes charged
Issues: respondent Judge Occiano with gross
ignorance of the law. Occiano is the
1) Whether or not the marriage between presiding judge in Court of Balatan,
petitioner and private respondent is void from Camarines Sur. However, he solemnized
the beginning for lack of a marriage license the marriage of Aranes and Dominador
at the time of the ceremony; and Orobia on February 17, 2000 at the couple’s
residence in Nabua, Camarines Sur which is
2) Whether or not private respondent is
outside his territorial jurisdiction and without
psychologically incapacitated at the time of
the requisite of marriage license.
said marriage celebration to warrant a
declaration of its absolute nullity.
It appeared in the records that petitioner and IN THE MATTER OF THE INTESTATE
Orobia filed their application of marriage ESTATES OF THE DECEASED JOSEFA
license on January 5, 2000 and was stamped DELGADO AND GUILLERMO RUSTIA
that it will be issued on January 17, 2000 but CARLOTA DELGADO VDA. DE DE LA
neither of them claimed it. In addition, no ROSA and other HEIRS OF LUIS
record also appeared with the Office of the DELGADO, petitioners, v.
Civil Registrar General for the alleged
marriage. HEIRS OF MARCIANA RUSTIA VDA. DE
DAMIAN, respondents.
Before Judge Occiano started the ceremony,
he carefully examined the documents and G.R. No. 155733.
first refused to conduct the marriage and
advised them to reset the date considering January 27, 2006.
the absence of the marriage license. Facts:
However, due to the earnest pleas of the
parties, the influx of visitors and fear that the On May 8, 1975, Luisa Delgado, the sister of
postponement of the wedding might Josefa, filed a Petition on Letters of
aggravate the physical condition of Orobia Administration of the estate of deceased
who just suffered from stroke, he solemnized spouses Josefa Delgado and Guillermo
the marriage on the assurance of the couple Rustia (died 1972 and 1974 respectively).
that they will provide the license that same Such letter was opposed by Marciana Rustia,
afternoon. Occiano denies that he told the a sister of Guillermo, claiming that they
couple that their marriage is valid. should be the beneficiaries of the estate. The
trial court then allowed Guillerma Rustia, a
ISSUE: legitimate child of Guillermo, to intervene in
Whether Judge Occiano is guilty of the case as she claimed that she possessed
solemnizing a marriage without a duly issued the status of an acknowledged legitimate
marriage license and conducting it outside natural child, hence, she should be the sole
his territorial jurisdiction. heir of the estate. Later, Luisa Delgado said
that the spouses were living together without
HELD: marriage. Luisa Delgado died and was
substituted dela Rosa (herein petitioner) in
The court held that “the territorial jurisdiction
this case. The RTC appointed dela Rosa as
of respondent judge is limited to the
the administrator of the estates of the
municipality of Balatan, Camarines Sur. His
deceased.
act of solemnizing the marriage of petitioner
and Orobia in Nabua, Camarines Sur Issue:
therefore is contrary to law and subjects him
to administrative liability. His act may not Whether or not dela Rosa should be the sole
amount to gross ignorance of the law for he administrator of the estate noting that Josefa
allegedly solemnized the marriage out of and
human compassion but nonetheless, he Guillermo did not contract marriage.
cannot avoid liability for violating the law on
marriage”. Ruling:
WHEREFORE, respondent Judge Salvador The Court held, through the testimonies of
M. Occiano, Presiding Judge of the Municipal the witnesses, that marriage between Josefa
Trial Court of Balatan, Camarines Sur, is and Guillermo never occurred. Although it is
fined P5,000.00 pesos with a STERN presumed that a man and a woman
WARNING that a repetition of the same or deporting themselves as husband and wife
similar offense in the future will be dealt with have entered into a lawful contract of
more severely. marriage, such testimonies shall prevail.
Since, no marriage had occurred between (b) Whether or not plaintiffs have a cause of
the two, the estate must be settled in different action against defendant in asking for the
proceedings. Therefore, dela Rosa cannot declaration of the nullity of marriage of their
be appointed as the sole administrator of the deceased father, Pepito G. Niñal, with her
estate of the deceased. specially so when at the time of the filing of
this instant suit, their father Pepito G. Niñal is
ENGRACE NIÑAL for Herself and as already dead
Guardian ad Litem of the minors
BABYLINE NIÑAL, INGRID NIÑAL, Ruling:
ARCHIE NIÑAL & PEPITO NIÑAL, JR.,
petitioners, v. NORMA BAYADOG, (a) On the assumption that Pepito and
respondent. Norma have lived together as husband and
wife for five years without the benefit of
G.R. No. 133778. March 14, 2000 marriage, that five-year period should be
computed based on cohabitation as
Facts: “husband and wife” where the only missing
Pepito Niñal was married to Teodulfa factor is the special contract of marriage to
Bellones on September 26, 1974. She was validate the union. In other words, the five-
shot by Pepito resulting in her death on April year common law cohabitation period, which
24, 1985. One year and 8 months thereafter, is counted back from the date of celebration
Pepito and respondent Norma Badayog got of marriage, should be a period of legal union
married without any marriage license. In lieu had it not been for the absence of the
thereof, Pepito and Norma executed an marriage. The five-year period should be the
affidavit dated December 11, 1986 stating years immediately before the day the
that they had lived together as husband and marriage and it should be a period of
wife for at least five years and were thus cohabitation characterized by exclusivity—
exempt from securing a marriage license. On meaning no third party was involved at any
February 19, 1997, Pepito died in a car time within the five years, and continuity—
accident that is, unbroken. Otherwise, if that five-year
cohabitation period is computed without any
After their father’s death, petitioners filed a distinction as to whether the parties were
petition for declaration of nullity of the capacitated to marry each other during the
marriage of Pepito to Norma alleging that the entire five years, then the law would be
said marriage was void for lack of a marriage sanctioning immorality and encouraging
license. The case was filed under the parties to have common law relationships
assumption that the validity or invalidity of the and placing them on the same footing with
second marriage would affect petitioner’s those who lived faithfully with their spouse.
successional rights.
(b) The Code is silent as to who can file a
Norma filed a motion to dismiss on the petition to declare the nullity of a marriage.
ground that petitioners have no cause of Voidable and void marriages are not
action since they are not among the persons identical. Consequently, void marriages can
who could file an action for annulment of be questioned even after the death of either
marriage under Article 47 of the Family party, but voidable marriages can be
Code. assailed only during the lifetime of the parties
and not after death of either, in which case
Issues:
the parties and their offspring will be left as if
(a) Whether or not Pepito and Norma’ living the marriage had been perfectly valid.
together as husband and wife for at least five
years exempts them from obtaining a
marriage license under Article 34 of the
Family Code of the Philippines.
HERMINIA BORJA-MANZANO, petitioner, Ruling:
v. JUDGE ROQUE R. SANCHEZ,
respondent. No. In Article 34 of the Family Code provides
“No license shall be necessary for the
A.M. No. MTJ-00-1329. marriage of a man and a woman who have
lived together as husband and wife for at
March 8, 2001 least five years and without any legal
Facts: impediment to marry each other.
Respondent Judge cannot take refuge on the
Complainant Herminia Borja-Manzano avers Joint Affidavit of David Manzano and
that she was the lawful wife of the late David Luzviminda Payao stating that they had been
Manzano, having been married to him on 21 cohabiting as husband and wife for seven
May 1966 in San Gabriel Archangel Parish, years. Just like separation, free and
Araneta Avenue, Caloocan City. Four voluntary cohabitation with another person
children were born out of that marriage. On for at least five years does not severe the tie
22 March 1993, however, her husband of a subsisting previous marriage. Marital
contracted another marriage with one cohabitation for a long period of time
Luzviminda Payao before respondent Judge. between two individuals who are legally
When respondent Judge solemnized said capacitated to marry each other is merely a
marriage, he knew or ought to know that the ground for exemption from marriage license.
same was void and bigamous, as the It could not serve as a justification for
marriage contract clearly stated that both respondent Judge to solemnize a
contracting parties were “separated.” subsequent marriage vitiated by the
impediment of a prior existing marriage.
Respondent Judge, on the other hand,
claims in his Comment that when he Carlos vs Sandoval
officiated the marriage between Manzano
and Payao he did not know that Manzano Ponente: REYES, R.T., J.:
was legally married. What he knew was that FACTS:
the two had been living together as husband
and wife for seven years already without the ● Spouses Felix B. Carlos and Felipa Elemia
benefit of marriage, as manifested in their died intestate. They left six parcels of land to
joint affidavit. According to him, had he their compulsory heirs, Teofilo Carlos and
known that the late Manzano was married, petitioner Juan De Dios Carlos.
he would have advised the latter not to marry
again; otherwise, Manzano could be charged ● During the lifetime of Felix Carlos, he
with bigamy. He then prayed that the agreed to transfer his estate to Teofilo. The
complaint be dismissed for lack of merit and agreement was made in order to avoid the
for being designed merely to harass him. payment of inheritance taxes. Teofilo, in turn,
undertook to deliver and turn over the share
The Court Administrator recommended that of the other legal heir, petitioner Juan De
respondent Judge be found guilty of gross Dios Carlos.
ignorance of the law.
● Eventually, the first three (3) parcels of land
Respondent Judge alleges that he agreed to were transferred and registered in the name
solemnize the marriage in question in of Teofilo. Parcel No. 4 was registered in the
accordance with Article 34 of the Family name of petitioner.
Code.
● On May 13, 1992, Teofilo died intestate. He
Issue: was survived by respondents Felicidad and
their son, Teofilo Carlos II (Teofilo II). Upon
Is the reason of the respondent Judge in Teofilo’s death, Parcel Nos. 5 & 6 were
solemnizing the marriage valid?
registered in the name of respondent o General rule: A petition for declaration of
Felicidad and co-respondent, Teofilo II. absolute nullity of void marriage may be filed
solely by
● petitioner asserted that the marriage
between his late brother Teofilo and the husband or wife.
respondent Felicidad was a nullity in view of
the absence of the required marriage license o Exceptions:
. He likewise maintained that his deceased ▪ (1) Nullity of marriage cases commenced
brother was neither the natural nor the before the effectivity of Rule on Declaration
adoptive father of respondent Teofilo Carlos of Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and
II. Annulment of Voidable Marriages,” (March
● Petitioner likewise sought the avoidance of 15, 2003)
the contracts he entered into with respondent ▪ (2) Marriages celebrated during the
Felicidad with respect to the subject real effectivity of the Civil Code.
properties. He also prayed for the
cancellation of the certificates of title issued o Section 2(a) of the Rule makes it the sole
in the name of respondents. He argued that right of the husband or the wife to file a
the properties covered by such certificates of petition for declaration of absolute nullity of
title, including the sums received by void marriage.
respondents as proceeds, should be
▪ Reason:
reconveyed to him.
● they do not have a legal right to file the
● Evidence used by respondents for
petition.
existence marriage:
● Compulsory or intestate heirs have only
o affidavit of the justice of the peace who
inchoate rights prior to the death of
solemnized the marriage.
their predecessor, and, hence, can only
o Certificate of Live Birth of respondent
question the validity of the marriage of
Teofilo II. → late Teofilo Carlos and
respondent Felicidad were designated as the spouses upon the death of a spouse in a
parents proceeding for the settlement of
● Petitioner presented a certification from the the estate of the deceased spouse filed in the
Local Civil Registrar of Calumpit, Bulacan, regular courts.
certifying that there is no record of birth of
respondent Teofilo II. ● State’s concern is to preserve marriage
and not to seek its dissolution.
ISSUES
o husband and the wife are the sole
1. Whether or not a party outside of marriage architects of a healthy, loving, peaceful
can file for nullity of marriage marriage. They are the only ones who can
decide when and how to build the
2. Whether or not Rule on Declaration of
foundations of marriage. The spouses alone
Absolute Nullity of Void Marriages and
are the engineers of their marital life. They
Annulment of Voidable Marriage is
are simultaneously the directors and actors
applicable in this case
of their matrimonial true-to-life play. Hence,
HELD (including the Ratio Decidendi) they alone can and should decide when to
take a cut, but only in accordance with the
● (1) it depends: grounds allowed by law.
o beginning of the end of the right of the heirs
of the deceased spouse to bring a nullity of
marriage case against the surviving spouse. o ***Court strictly instructed RTC to dismiss
But the Rule never intended to deprive the the nullity of marriage case for lack of cause
compulsory or intestate heirs of their of action if it is proven by evidence that
successional rights Teofilo II is a legitimate, illegitimate, or legally
adopted son of Teofilo Carlos, the deceased
▪ They can still protect their succession brother of petitioner.
alright, for, as stated in the Rationale of the
Rules on Annulment of Voidable Marriages o only surviving compulsory heirs are
and Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Void respondent Felicidad and their son, Teofilo II.
Marriages, compulsory or intestate heirs can Under the law on succession, successional
still question the validity of the marriage of rights are transmitted from the moment of
the spouses, not in a proceeding for death of the decedent and the compulsory
declaration of nullity but upon the death of a heirs are called to succeed by operation of
spouse in a proceeding for the settlement of law.
the estate of the deceased spouse filed in the
regular courts. o Upon Teofilo’s death in 1992, all his
property, rights and obligations to the extent
● (2) No. of the value of the inheritance are transmitted
to his compulsory heirs. These heirs were
o Petitioner commenced the nullity of respondents Felicidad and Teofilo II, as the
marriage case against respondent Felicidad surviving spouse and child, respectively.
in 1995. The marriage in controversy was
celebrated on May 14, 1962. o Article 887 of the Civil Code outlined who
are compulsory heirs, to wit:
o the marriage having been solemnized prior
to the effectivity of the Family Code, the ▪ (1) Legitimate children and descendants,
applicable law is the Civil Code which was with respect to their legitimate parents and
the law in effect at the time of its celebration.
But the Civil Code is silent as to who may ascendants;
bring an action to declare the marriage void. ▪ (2) In default of the foregoing, legitimate
Does this mean that any person can bring an parents and ascendants, with respect to their
action for the declaration of nullity of legitimate children and descendants;
marriage?
▪ (3) The widow or widower;
o True, under the New Civil Code which is
the law in force at the time the respondents ▪ (4) Acknowledged natural children, and
were married, or even in the Family Code, natural children by legal fiction;
there is no specific provision as to who can
▪ (5) Other illegitimate children referred to in
file a petition to declare the nullity of
Article 287 of the Civil Code
marriage; however, only a party who can
demonstrate “proper interest”can file the o brother is not among those considered as
same. A petition to declare the nullity of compulsory heirs.
marriage, like any other actions, must be
prosecuted or defended in the name of the ▪ If respondent Teofilo II is declared and
real party-in-interest and must be based on a finally proven not to be the legitimate,
cause of action. Thus, in Niñal v. Badayog, illegitimate, or adopted son of Teofilo,
the Court held that the children have the petitioner would then have a personality to
personality to file the petition to declare the seek the nullity of marriage of his deceased
nullity of marriage of their deceased father to brother with respondent Felicidad. This is so,
their stepmother as it affects their considering that collateral relatives, like a
successional rights brother and sister, acquire successional right
over the estate if the decedent dies without
issue and without ascendants in the direct Fely to their children, that Fely got married to
line. an American, with whom she eventually had
a child. Fely had five visits in Cebu City but
RULING: never met Crasus. Also, she had been
WHEREFORE, the appealed Decision is openly using the surname of her American
MODIFIED as follows: husband in the Philippines and in the USA.
Crasus filed a declaration of nullity of
1. The case is REMANDED to the Regional marriage on March 25, 1997.
Trial Court in regard to the action on the
status and filiation of On her Answer, Fely alleged that while she
did file for divorce from respondent Crasus,
respondent Teofilo Carlos II and the validity she denied having herself sent a letter to
or nullity of marriage between respondent respondent Crasus requesting him to sign
Felicidad Sandoval and the the enclosed divorce papers. After securing
a divorce from respondent Crasus, Fely
late Teofilo Carlos;
married her American husband and acquired
2. If Teofilo Carlos II is proven to be the American citizenship. She argued that her
legitimate, or illegitimate, or legally adopted marriage to her American husband was legal
son of the late Teofilo Carlos, the RTC is because now being an American citizen, her
strictly INSTRUCTED to DISMISS the action status shall be governed by the law of her
for nullity of marriage for lack of cause of present nationality. Fely also prayed that the
action; RTC declare her marriage to respondent
Crasus null and void; and that respondent
3. The disposition of the RTC in Nos. 1 to 8 Crasus be ordered to pay to Fely the
of the fallo of its decision is VACATED AND P90,000.00 she advanced to him, with
SET ASIDE. The Regional Trial Court is interest, plus, moral and exemplary
ORDERED to conduct trial on the merits with damages, attorney’s fees, and litigation
dispatch and to give this case priority in its expenses.
calendar.
The Regional Trial Court declared the
No costs. marriage of Crasus and Fely null and void ab
SO ORDERED. ignition on the ground of psychological
incapacity. One factor considered by the
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, RTC is that Fely obtained a divorce decree in
petitioner v. CRASUS L. IYOY, the United States of America and married
respondent. another man and has established another
family of her own. Plaintiff is in an anomalous
G.R. No. 152577. situation, wherein he is married to a wife who
September 21, 2005 is already married to another man in another
country. The Court of Appeals affirmed the
FACTS: trial court’s decision.
Crasus Iyoy married Fely on December 16, ISSUE:
1961 in Cebu City. They begot five children.
After the celebration of their marriage, 1. Whether or not abandonment and sexual
respondent Crasus discovered that Fely was infidelity constitute psychological incapacity.
“hot-tempered, a nagger and extravagant.” In 2. Whether or not the divorce instituted by
1984, Fely left the Philippines for the United Fely abroad was valid.
States of America (U.S.A.), leaving all of their
five children to the care of respondent RULING:
Crasus. Sometime in 1985, respondent
Crasus learned, through the letters sent by 1st issue:
The totality of evidence presented during the validly obtained a divorce from respondent
trial is insufficient to support the finding of Crasus.
psychological incapacity of Fely. Using the
guidelines established by the cases of The Supreme Court held that the marriage of
Santos, Molina and Marcos, this Court found respondent Crasus L. Iyoy and Fely Ada
that the totality of evidence presented by Rosal-Iyoy remains valid and subsisting.
respondent Crasus failed miserably to REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES,
establish the alleged psychological Petitioner, vs. CIPRIANO ORBECIDO III,
incapacity of his wife Fely; therefore, there is Respondent. G.R. No. 154380
no basis for declaring their marriage null and October 5, 2005
void under Article 36 of the Family Code of
the Philippines. Irreconcilable differences, QUISUMBING, J.:
conflicting personalities, emotional
Facts:
immaturity and irresponsibility, physical
abuse, habitual alcoholism, sexual infidelity Cipriano Orbecido III married Lady Myros M.
or perversion, and abandonment, by Villanueva at the United Church of Christ in
themselves, also do not warrant a finding of the Philippines in Lam-an, Ozamis City, on
psychological incapacity under the said May 24, 1981.They were blessed with a son
Article. and a daughter, Kristoffer Simbortriz V.
Orbecido and Lady Kimberly V. Orbecido.
2nd issue:
Lady Myros left for the United States bringing
As it is worded, Article 26, paragraph 2,
along their son Kristoffer in 1986. After few
refers to a special situation wherein one of
years, Cipriano discovered that his wife had
the couple getting married is a Filipino citizen
been naturalized as an American citizen.
and the other a foreigner at the time the
Cipriano learned from his son that his wife
marriage was celebrated. By its plain and
had obtained a divorce decree sometime in
literal interpretation, the said provision
2000 and then married a certain Innocent
cannot be applied to the case of respondent
Stanley and lived in California.
Crasus and his wife Fely because at the time
Fely obtained her divorce, she was still a He then filed with the trial court a petition for
Filipino citizen. Although the exact date was authority to remarry invoking Paragraph 2 of
not established, Fely herself admitted in her Article 26 of the Family Code. No opposition
Answer filed before the RTC that she was filed. Finding merit in the petition, the
obtained a divorce from respondent Crasus court granted the same. The Republic, herein
sometime after she left for the United States petitioner, through the Office of the Solicitor
in 1984, after which she married her General (OSG), sought reconsideration but it
American husband in 1985. In the same was denied. Orbecido filed a petition for
Answer, she alleged that she had been an review of certiorari on the Decision of the
American citizen since 1988. At the time she RTC.
filed for divorce, Fely was still a Filipino
citizen, and pursuant to the nationality Issue:
principle embodied in Article 15 of the Civil Whether or not respondent Orbecido can
Code of the Philippines, she was still bound remarry under Article 26 of the Family Code.
by Philippine laws on family rights and duties,
status, condition, and legal capacity, even Held:
when she was already living abroad.
Philippine laws, then and even until now, do Yes. The Court’s unanimous decision in
not allow and recognize divorce between holding Article 26, paragraph 2 of the Family
Filipino spouses. Thus, Fely could not have Code be interpreted as allowing a Filipino
citizen who has been divorced by a spouse
who had acquired a citizenship and
remarried, also to remarry under Philippine a divorce decree was rendered by the
law. Japanese Court;
The article should be interpreted to include The trial court (RTC) denied the petition for
cases involving parties who, at the time of the lack of merit. In ruling that the divorce
celebration of the marriage were Filipino obtained by Manalo in Japan should not be
citizens, but later, one of them became recognized, it opined that, based on Article
naturalized as a foreign citizen and obtained 15 of the New Civil Code, the Philippine law
a divorce decree. “does not afford Filipinos the right to file a
divorce, whether they are in the country or
The instant case was one where at the time living abroad, if they are married to Filipinos
the marriage was solemnized, the parties or to foreigners, or if they celebrated their
were two Filipino citizens, but later, the wife marriage in the Philippines or in another
was naturalized as an American citizen and country” and that unless Filipinos “are
subsequently obtained a divorce granting her naturalized as citizens of another country,
capacity to remarry, and indeed, she Philippine laws shall have control over issues
remarried an American citizen while residing related to Filipino family rights and duties,
in the US. The Filipino spouse should together with determination of their condition
likewise be allowed to remarry as if the other and legal capacity to enter into contracts and
party were a foreigner at the time of the civil relations, including marriages”.
solemnization of the marriage.
On appeal, the Court of Appeals (CA)
However, since Orbecido was not able to overturned the RTC decision. It held that
prove as fact his wife’s naturalization, he was Article 26 of the Family Code of the
still barred from remarrying. Philippines (Family Code) is applicable even
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, if it was Manalo who filed for divorce against
Petitioner, – versus – MARELYN TANEDO her Japanese husband because the decree
MANALO, Respondent. they obtained makes the latter no longer
married to the former, capacitating him to
G.R. NO. 221029 remarry. Conformably with Navarro, et al. v.
Exec. Secretary, et al. [663 Phil. 546 (2011)]
24 April 2018
ruling that the meaning of the law should be
Facts: based on the intent of the lawmakers and in
view of the legislative intent behind Article
On January 20, 2012, respondent Marelyn 26, it would be the height of injustice to
Tanedo Manalo (Manalo) filed a petition for consider Manalo as still married to the
cancellation of entry of marriage in the Civil Japanese national, who, in turn, is no longer
Registry of San Juan, Metro Manila, by virtue married to her. For the appellate court, the
of a judgment of divorce rendered by a fact that it was Manalo who filed the divorce
Japanese court. The petition was later case is inconsequential.
amended and captioned as a petition for
recognition and enforcement of a foreign Issue:
judgment.
Whether a Filipino citizen, who initiated a
The petition alleged, among others, that: divorce proceeding abroad and obtained a
favorable judgment against his or her alien
Petitioner is previously married in the spouse who is capacitated to remarry, has
Philippines to a Japanese national named the capacity to remarry pursuant to Article 26
YOSHIDO MINORO; (2) of the Family Code.
Recently, a case for divorce was filed by Ruling:
petitioner in Japan and after due proceeding,
Yes.
Paragraph 2 of Article 26 speaks of “a circumstances surrounding them are alike.
divorce x x x validly obtained abroad by the Were it not for Paragraph 2 of Article 26, both
alien spouse capacitating him or her to are still married to their foreigner spouses
remarry”. Based on a clear and plain reading who are no longer their wives/husbands.
of the provision, it only requires that there be Hence, to make a distinction between them
a divorce validly obtained abroad. The letter are based merely on superficial difference of
of the law does not demand that the alien whether they initiated the divorce
spouse should be the one who initiated the proceedings or not is utterly unfair. Indeed,
proceeding wherein the divorce decree was the treatment gives undue favor to one and
granted. It does not distinguish whether the unjustly discriminate against the other.
Filipino spouse is the petitioner or the
respondent in the foreign divorce Thus, a Filipino citizen, who initiated a
proceeding. divorce proceeding abroad and obtained a
favorable judgment against his or her alien
The purpose of Paragraph 2 of Article 26 is spouse who is capacitated to remarry, has
to avoid the absurd situation where the the capacity to remarry pursuant to Article 26
Filipino spouse remains married to the alien (2) of the Family Code.
spouse who, after a foreign divorce decree
that is effective in the country where it is REPUBLIC vs COTE, GR. No. 212860,
rendered, is no longer married to the Filipino March 14, 2018
spouse. The provision is a corrective Facts:
measure to address the anomaly where the
Filipino spouse is tied to the marriage while Rhomel Gagarin Cote (Rhomel) and
the foreign spouse is free to remarry under respondent Florie Grace Manongdo-Cote
the laws of his or her country. Whether the (Florie) were married in Quezon City. At the
Filipino spouse initiated the foreign divorce time of their marriage, the spouses were both
proceeding or not, a favorable decree Filipinos and were already blessed with a
dissolving the marriage bond and son, Christian Gabriel Manongdo who was
capacitating his or her alien spouse to born in Honolulu, Hawaii, United States of
remarry will have the same result: the Filipino America Rhomel filed a Petition for Divorce
spouse will effectively be without a husband before the Family Court of the First Circuit of
or a wife. A Filipino who initiated a foreign Hawaii Seven years later, Florie commenced
divorce proceeding is in the same place and a petition for recognition of foreign judgment
in like circumstance as a Filipino who is at the granting the divorce before the Regional Trial
receiving end of an alien-initiated Court (RTC). Florie also prayed for the
proceeding. Therefore, the subject provision cancellation of her marriage contract RTC
should not make a distinction. In both RULING: granted the petition and declared
instances, it is extended to recognize the Florie to be capacitated to remarry.
residual effect of the foreign divorce decree
Issue:
on Filipinos whose marital ties to their alien
spouses are severed by operation of the The core issue for the Court's resolution is
latter’s national law. whether or not the provisions of A.M. No. 02-
11-10-SC 12 applies in a case involving
There is no real and substantial difference
recognition of a foreign decree of divorce.
between a Filipino who initiated a foreign
divorce proceeding and a Filipino who Held:
obtained a divorce decree upon the instance
of his or her alien spouse. In the eyes of the It bears stressing that as of present, our
Philippine and foreign laws, both are family laws do not recognize absolute
considered Filipinos who have the same divorce between Filipino husbands and
rights and obligations in an alien land. The wives. Such fact, however, do not prevent
our family courts from recognizing divorce
decrees procured abroad by an alien spouse Santiago is void ab initio because their
who is married to a Filipino citizen. marriage was solemnized without the
required marriage license. The trial court
Article 26 of the Family Code states: Art. 26. ruled in favor of Yee, ordering Nicdao to pay
All marriages solemnized outside the Yee half of acquired death benefits. The
Philippines, in accordance with the laws in Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the
force in the country where they were trial court.
solemnized, and valid there as such, shall
also be valid in this country, except those Issue:
prohibited under Articles 35(1), (4), (5) and
(6), 36, 37 and 38. Where a marriage Whether or not the marriage of Santiago
between a Filipino citizen and a foreigner is Carino and Susan Nicdao is void for lack of
validly celebrated and a divorce is thereafter marriage license.
validly obtained abroad by the alien spouse Ruling:
capacitating him or her to remarry, the
Filipino spouse shall likewise have capacity Under the Civil Code, which was the law in
to remarry under Philippine law. force when the marriage of Nicdao and
Carino was solemnized in 1969, a valid
This means that the foreign judgment and its marriage license is a requisite of marriage
authenticity must be proven as facts under and the absence thereof, subject to certain
our rules on evidence, together with the exceptions, renders the marriage void ab
alien's applicable national law to show the initio. In the case at bar, the marriage does
effect of the judgment on the alien himself or not fall within any of those exceptions and a
herself. The recognition may be made in an marriage license therefore was
action instituted specially for the purpose or indispensable to the validity of it. This fact is
in another action where a party invokes the certified by the Local Civil Registrar of San
foreign decree as an integral aspect of his Juan, Metro Manila. Such being the case, the
claim or defense. petition is hereby DENIED. presumed validity of the marriage of Nicdao
SANTIAGO CARINO, petitioner vs. and Carino has been sufficiently overcome
SUSAN CARINO, defendant and cannot stand. The marriage of Yee and
Carino is void ab initio as well for lack of
G.R. No. 132529. February 2, 2001 judicial decree of nullity of marriage of Carino
and Nicdao at the time it was contracted. The
Facts: marriages are bigamous; under Article 148 of
During the lifetime of SP04 Santiago S. the Family Code, properties acquired by the
Carino, he contracted two marriages, the first parties through their actual joint contribution
with Susan Nicdao Carino with whom he had shall belong to the co-ownership. The
two offsprings (Sahlee and Sandee) and with decision of the trial court and Court of
Susan Yee Carino with whom he had no Appeals is affirmed.
children in their almost ten-year cohabitation. Morigo vs. People
In 1988, Santiago passed away under the
care of Susan Yee who spent for his medical GR No. 145226, February 6, 2004
and burial expenses. Both petitioner and
respondent filed claims for monetary benefits FACTS:
and financial assistance pertaining to the Lucio Morigo and Lucia Barrete were
deceased from various government boardmates in Bohol. They lost contacts for
agencies. Nicdao was able to collect a total a while but after receiving a card from
of P146,000.00 and Yee received a total of Barrete and various exchanges of letters,
P21,000.00. Yee filed an action for collection they became sweethearts. They got married
of sums of money against Nicdao, in 1990. Barrete went back to Canada for
contending that the marriage of the latter with work and in 1991 she filed petition for divorce
in Ontario Canada, which was granted. In the Solicitor-General in the instant case. The
1992, Morigo married Lumbago. He Republic argued, first, that Nolasco did not
subsequently filed a complaint for judicial possess a well-founded belief that the absent
declaration of nullity on the ground that there spouse was already dead; and second,
was no marriage ceremony. Morigo was Nolasco’s attempt to have his marriage
then charged with bigamy and moved for a annulled in the same proceeding was a
suspension of arraignment since the civil cunning attempt to circumvent the law on
case pending posed a prejudicial question in marriage.
the bigamy case. Morigo pleaded not guilty
claiming that his marriage with Barrete was Respondent Nolasco testified that he was a
void ab initio. Petitioner contented he seaman and that he had first met Janet
contracted second marriage in good faith. Monica Parker, a British subject, in a bar in
England during one of his ship’s port calls.
ISSUE: From that chance meeting onwards, Janet
Monica Parker lived with respondent Nolasco
Whether Morigo must have filed declaration on his ship for six months until they returned
for the nullity of his marriage with Barrete to respondent’s hometown of San Jose,
before his second marriage in order to be Antique on 19 November 1980 after his
free from the bigamy case. seaman’s contract expired. On 15 January
HELD: 1982, respondent married Janet Monica
Parker in San Jose, Antique, in Catholic rites
Morigo’s marriage with Barrete is void ab officiated by Fr. Henry van Tilborg in the
initio considering that there was no actual Cathedral of San Jose.
marriage ceremony performed between
them by a solemnizing officer instead they He obtained another employment contract as
just merely signed a marriage contract. The a seaman and left his wife with his parents in
petitioner does not need to file declaration of San Jose, Antique. Sometime in January
the nullity of his marriage when he contracted 1983, while working overseas, respondent
his second marriage with Lumbago. Hence, received a letter from his mother informing
he did not commit bigamy and is acquitted in him that Janet Monica had given birth to his
the case filed. son. The same letter informed him that Janet
Monica had left Antique.
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES,
petitioner, v. GREGORIO NOLASCO, Respondent further testified that his efforts to
respondent. look for her himself whenever his ship
docked in England proved fruitless. He also
G.R. No. 94053. March 17, 1993. stated that all the letters he had sent to his
missing spouse at No. 38 Ravena Road,
Facts:
Allerton, Liverpool, England, the address of
On 5 August 1988, respondent Gregorio the bar where he and Janet Monica first met,
Nolasco filed before the Regional Trial Court were all returned to him. He also claimed that
a petition for the declaration of presumptive he inquired from among friends, but they too
death of his wife Janet Monica Parker, had no news of Janet Monica.
involving Article 41 of the Family Code. The
The trial court granted Nolasco’s petition
petition prayed that respondent’s wife be
hereby declaring the presumptively death of
declared presumptively dead or, in the
Janet Monica Parker Nolasco, without
alternative, that the marriage be declared null
prejudice to her reappearance.
and void.
The Republic appealed to the Court of
The Republic of the Philippines opposed the
Appeals contending that the trial court erred
petition through the Provincial Prosecutor of
in declaring Janet Monica Parker
Antique who had been deputized to assist
presumptively dead because respondent
Nolasco had failed to show that there existed who had previously been married to James
a well-founded belief for such declaration. William Bounds on 13 January 1946 at
The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s Caloocan City. Teodorico and Marietta were
decision, holding that respondent had married eleven years later without court
sufficiently established a basis to form a declaration that James presumptively dead.
belief that his absent spouse had already On October 9, 1992 petitioner Antonia Armas
died. y Calisterio a surviving sister of Teodorico,
filed a petition entitled “In matter of Intestate
Issue: Estate of the deceased Teodorico Calisterio,
Whether or not Nolasco has a well-founded claiming to be inter alia, the sole surviving
belief that his wife is already dead. heir of Teodorico Calisterio, the marriage
between the latter and respondent Marietta
Ruling: being bigamous and thereby null and void.
On January 17, 1996, the lower court handed
No. The Court believes that respondent
down its decision in favor of petitioner
Nolasco failed to conduct a search for his
Antonia. On appeal the Court of Appeal
missing wife with such diligence as to give
rendered decision in favor of Marietta
rise to a “well-founded belief” that she is
declaring her marriage to Teodorico valid
dead. Pursuant to Article 41 of the Family
and entitling her to estate of Teodorico.
Code, a marriage contracted by any person
during the subsistence of a previous Issue:
marriage shall be null and void, unless before
the celebration of the subsequent marriage, Whether the marriage of Marietta between
the prior spouse had been absent for four the deceased Teodorico valid that in turn
consecutive years and the spouse present would determine her right as surviving
had a well-founded belief that the absent spouse.
spouse was already dead. In fine, Held:
respondent failed to establish that he had the
well-founded belief required by law that his The marriage of Marietta having contracted
absent wife was already dead that would during the regime of the Civil Code should be
sustain the issuance of a court order thus deemed valid notwithstanding the
declaring Janet Monica Parker absence of judicial declaration of marriage of
presumptively dead. Thus, the Decision of presumptive death of James Bounds. The
the Court of Appeals affirming the trial court’s conjugal property of Teodorico and Marietta,
decision declaring Janet Monica Parker upon its dissolution with the death of
presumptively dead is hereby reversed and Teodorico, the property should be rightly
both Decisions are hereby nullified and set divided one portion to the surviving spouse
aside. and the other portion to the estate of the
deceased spouse.
Antonia Armas y Calisterio versus
Calisterio REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES,
petitioner, v. THE HONORABLE COURT
G.R. No. 136467. OF APPEALS, respondents.
April 6, 2000 G.R. No. 159614.
Facts: December 9, 2005.
On April 1992, Teodorico died intestate Facts:
leaving parcel of land with an estimated
value of P 604,750 Teodorico was survived On March 29, 2001, Alan B. Alegro filed a
by his wife respondent Marietta Calisterio. petition in the Regional Trial Court for the
Teodorico was second husband of Marietta declaration of presumptive death of his wife,
Rosalia “Lea” A. Julaton. At the hearing, Alan Issue:
adduced evidence that he and Lea were
married on January 20, 1995 in Catbalogan, Whether or not the declaration of
Samar. He testified that, on February 6, presumptive death of the wife is valid
1995, Lea arrived home late in the evening Ruling:
and he berated her for being always out of
their house. He told her that if she enjoyed No. In view of the summary nature of
the life of a single person, it would be better proceedings under Article 41 of the Family
for her to go back to her parents. Lea did not Code for the declaration of presumptive
reply. Alan narrated that, when he reported death of one’s spouse, the degree of due
for work the following day, Lea was still in the diligence set by the Court in locating the
house, but when he arrived home later in the whereabouts of a missing spouse must be
day, Lea was nowhere to be found. Alan strictly complied with. It is the policy of the
thought that Lea merely went to her parents’ State to protect and strengthen the family as
house in Bliss, Sto. Niño, Catbalogan, a basic social institution. Marriage is the
Samar. However, Lea did not return to their foundation of the family. Since marriage is an
house anymore. inviolable social institution that the 1987
Constitution seeks to protect from dissolution
Alan further testified that, he inquired Lea’s at the whim of the parties. For respondent’s
whereabouts but to no avail. failure to prove that he had a well-founded
Sometime in June 1995, he decided to go to belief that his wife is already dead and that
Manila to look for Lea, but his mother asked he exerted the required amount of diligence
him to leave after the town fiesta of in searching for his missing wife, the petition
Catbalogan, hoping that Lea may come for declaration of presumptive death should
home for the fiesta. Alan agreed. However, have been denied by the trial court and the
Lea did not show up. Alan then left for Manila Honorable Court of Appeals. For the purpose
on August 27, 1995. He went to a house in of contracting the subsequent marriage, the
Navotas where Janeth, Lea’s friend, was spouse present must institute a summary
staying. When asked where Lea was, Janeth proceeding as provided in this Code for the
told him that she had not seen her. He failed declaration of presumptive death of the
to find out Lea’s whereabouts despite his absentee, without prejudice to the effect of
repeated talks with Janeth. Alan decided to reappearance of the absent spouse. The
work as a part-time taxi driver. On his free spouse present is, thus, burdened to prove
time, he would look for Lea in the malls but that his spouse has been absent and that he
still to no avail. He returned to Catbalogan in has a well-founded belief that the absent
1997 and again looked for his wife but failed. spouse is already dead before the present
spouse may contract a subsequent marriage.
On June 20, 2001, Alan reported Lea’s The law does not define what is meant by a
disappearance to the local police station. The well-grounded belief. Cuello Callon writes
police authorities issued an Alarm Notice on that “es menester que su creencia sea firme
July 4, 2001. Alan also reported Lea’s se funde en motivos racionales.” The Court
disappearance to the National Bureau of finds and so holds that the respondent failed
Investigation on July 9, 2001. On January 8, to prove that he had a well-founded belief,
2002, the court rendered judgment granting before he filed his petition in the trial court,
the petition. The OSG appealed the decision that his spouse Rosalia “Lea” Julaton was
to the Court of Appeals which rendered already dead. The Decision of the Court of
judgment on August 4, 2003, affirming the Appeals is reversed and set aside.
decision of the trial court.
SSS v.Jarque, G.R. No. 165545, subsequent marriage. Under the Family
Code, no judicial proceeding to annul a
March 24, 2006 subsequent marriage is necessary. Thus
FACTS: Article 42 thereof provides the subsequent
marriage shall be automatically terminated
On April 25, 1955, Clemente G. Bailon and by the recording of the affidavit of
Alice P. Diaz contracted marriage in reappearance of the absent spouse, unless
Barcelona, Sorsogon. On October 9, 1970, there is a judgment annulling the previous
Bailon filed before the CFI of Sorsogon a marriage or declaring it void ab initio. If the
petition to declare Alice presumptively dead. absentee reappears, but no step is taken to
On December 10, 1970, the CFI granted the terminate the subsequent marriage, either by
petition. Close to 13 years after his wife Alice affidavit or by court action, such absentee‘s
was declared presumptively dead or on mere reappearance will not terminate such
August 8, 1983, Bailon contracted marriage marriage. Since the second marriage has
with Teresita Jarque in Casiguran, Sorsogon. been contracted because of a presumption
She was designated as SSS beneficiary of that the former spouse is dead, such
Bailon. SSS cancelled the claim of presumption continues in spite of the
respondent Teresita Jarque of her monthly spouse‘s physical reappearance. In the case
pension for death benefits on the basis of the at bar, as no step was taken to nullify Bailon
opinion rendered by its legal department that & Jargue’s marriage, Teresita is proclaimed
her marriage with Bailon was void as it was to be rightfully the dependent spouse-
contracted during the subsistence of Bailon’s beneficiary of Bailon.
marriage with Alice. Teresita protested the
cancellation of her monthly pension for death Valdez vs. Republic
benefits asserting that her marriage with GR No. 180863,
Bailon was not declared before any court of
justice as bigamous or unlawful. Hence, it September 8, 2009
remained valid and subsisting for all legal
intents and purposes. FACTS:

ISSUE: Angelita Valdez was married with Sofio in


January 1971. She gave birth to a baby girl
Whether or not the subsequent marriage of named Nancy. They argued constantly
Clemente Bailon and respondent Teresita because Sofio was unemployed and did not
Jarque may terminate by mere reappearance bring home any money. In March 1972, the
of the absent spouse of Bailon latter left their house. Angelita and her child
waited until in May 1972, they decided to go
HELD: back to her parent’s home. 3 years have
The second marriage contracted by a person passed without any word from Sofio until in
with an absent spouse endures until October 1975 when he showed up and they
annulled. It is only the competent court that agreed to separate and executed a
can nullify the second marriage pursuant to document to that effect. It was the last time
Article 87 of the Civil Code and upon the they saw each other and had never heard of
reappearance of the missing spouse, which ever since. Believing that Sofio was already
action for annulment may be filed. The two dead, petitioner married Virgilio Reyes in
marriages involved here falls under the Civil June 1985. Virgilio’s application for
Code. Under the Civil Code, a subsequent naturalization in US was denied because
marriage being voidable, it is terminated by petitioner’s marriage with Sofio was
final judgment of annulment in a case subsisting. Hence, in March 2007, petitioner
instituted by the absent spouse who filed a petition seeking declaration of
reappears or by either of the spouses in the presumptive death of Sofio.
ISSUE: this Court is sufficiently convinced that
respondent failed to provide material support
Whether or not petitioner’s marriage with to the family and may have resorted to
Virgilio is valid despite lack of declaration of physical abuse and abandonment, the
presumptive death of Sofio. totality of his acts does not lead to a
HELD: conclusion of psychological incapacity on his
part. There is absolutely no showing that his
The court ruled that no decree on the “defects” were already present at the
presumption of Sofio’s death is necessary inception of the marriage or that they are
because Civil Code governs during 1971 and incurable. Verily, the behavior of respondent
not Family Code where at least 7 can be attributed to the fact that he had lost
consecutive years of absence is only his job and was not gainfully employed for a
needed. Thus, petitioner was capacitated to period of more than six years. It was during
marry Virgilio and their marriage is legal and this period that he became intermittently
valid. drunk, failed to give material and moral
support, and even left the family home. Thus,
Brenda Marcos vs Wilson Marcos
his alleged psychological illness was traced
(G.R. No. 136490) only to said period and not to the inception of
the marriage. Equally important, there is no
FACTS: evidence showing that his condition is
Brenda B. Marcos married Wilson Marcos in incurable, especially now that he is gainfully
1982 and they had five children. Alleging that employed as a taxi driver. In sum, this Court
the husband failed to provide material cannot declare the dissolution of the
support to the family and have resorted to marriage for failure of petitioner to show that
physical abuse and abandonment, Brenda the alleged psychological incapacity is
filed a case for the nullity of the marriage on characterized by gravity, juridical
the ground that Wilson Marcos has antecedence and incurability; and for her
psychological incapacity. The RTC declared failure to observe the guidelines outlined in
the marriage null and void under Article 36 Molina.
which was however reversed by the Court of G.R. No. 208790, January 21, 2015 -
Appeals GLENN VIÑAS, Petitioner, v. MARY
ISSUES: GRACE PAREL-VIÑAS, Respondent.

1. Whether personal medical or FACTS: On April 26, 1999, Glenn and Mary
psychological examination of the respondent Grace, then 25 and 23 years old,
by a physician is a requirement for a respectively, got married in civil rites held in
declaration of psychological incapacity. Lipa City, Batangas. Mary Grace was already
pregnant then. The infant, however, died at
2. Whether or not the totality of evidence birth due to weakness and malnourishment.
presented in this case show psychological Glenn alleged that the infant’s death was
incapacity. caused by Mary Grace’s heavy drinking and
smoking during her pregnancy. Sometime in
HELD: March of 2006, Mary Grace left the home
Psychological incapacity, as a ground for which she shared with Glenn. Glenn
declaring the nullity of a marriage, may be subsequently found out that Mary Grace
established by the totality of evidence went to work in Dubai. At the time the instant
presented. There is no requirement, however petition was filed, Mary Grace had not
that the respondent should be examined by returned yet. On February 18, 2009, Glenn
a physician or a psychologist as a condition filed a Petition for the declaration of nullity of
since qua non for such declaration. Although his marriage with Mary Grace. He alleged
that Mary Grace was insecure, extremely On January 29, 2013, the CA rendered the
jealous, outgoing and prone to regularly herein assailed decision reversing the RTC
resorting to any pretext to be able to leave ruling and declaring the marriage between
the house. She thoroughly enjoyed the night Glenn and Mary Grace as valid and
life and drank and smoked heavily even subsisting.
when she was pregnant. Further, Mary
Grace refused to perform even the most ISSUE:
essential household chores of cleaning and Whether or not sufficient evidence exist
cooking. According to Glenn, Mary Grace justifying the RTC’s declaration of nullity of
had not exhibited the foregoing traits and his marriage with Mary Grace.
behavior during their whirlwind courtship. Dr.
Tayag assessed Mary Grace’s personality RULING:
through the data she had gathered from
NO. The lack of personal examination or
Glenn and his cousin, Rodelito Mayo
assessment of the respondent by a
(Rodelito), who knew Mary Grace way back
psychologist or psychiatrist is not necessarily
in college. Dr. Tayag diagnosed Mary Grace
fatal in a petition for the declaration of nullity
to be suffering from a Narcissistic Personality
of marriage. "If the totality of evidence
Disorder with anti-social traits. Dr. Tayag
presented is enough to sustain a finding of
concluded that Mary Grace and Glenn’s
psychological incapacity, then actual medical
relationship is not founded on mutual love,
examination of the person concerned need
trust, respect, commitment and fidelity to
not be resorted to." In the instant petition,
each other. Hence, Dr. Tayag recommended
however, the cumulative testimonies of
the propriety of declaring the nullity of the
Glenn, Dr. Tayag and Rodelito, and the
couple’s marriage. On January 29, 2010, the
documentary evidence offered do not
RTC rendered its Decision declaring the
sufficiently prove the root cause, gravity and
marriage between Glenn and Mary Grace as
incurability of Mary Grace’s condition. The
null and void on account of the latter’s
respondent’s stubborn refusal to cohabit with
psychological incapacity. On appeal before
the petitioner was doubtlessly irresponsible,
the CA, the OSG claimed that no competent
but it was never proven to be rooted in some
evidence exists proving that Mary Grace
psychological illness.
indeed suffers from a Narcissistic Personality
Disorder, which prevents her from fulfilling Article 36 contemplates downright incapacity
her marital obligations. Specifically, the RTC or inability to take cognizance of and to
decision failed to cite the root cause of Mary assume basic marital obligations. Mere
Grace’s disorder. Further, the RTC did not "difficulty," "refusal" or "neglect" in the
state its own findings and merely relied on performance of marital obligations or "ill will"
Dr. Tayag’s statements anent the gravity and on the part of the spouse is different from
incurability of Mary Grace’s condition. The "incapacity" rooted on some debilitating
RTC resorted to mere generalizations and psychological condition or illness. Indeed,
conclusions Sans details. Besides, what irreconcilable differences, sexual infidelity or
psychological incapacity contemplates is perversion, emotional immaturity and
downright incapacity to assume marital irresponsibility, and the like, do not by
obligations. In the instant case, irreconcilable themselves warrant a finding of
differences, sexual infidelity, emotional psychological incapacity under Article 36, as
immaturity and irresponsibility were shown, the same may only be due to a person’s
but these do not warrant the grant of Glenn’s refusal or unwillingness to assume the
petition. Mary Grace may be unwilling to essential obligations of marriage and not due
assume her marital duties, but this does not to some psychological illness that is
translate into a psychological illness. contemplated by said rule.
Further, considering that Mary Grace was not decided to adopt a baby boy in 1977, who
personally examined by Dr. Tayag, there they named Jeremy.
arose a greater burden to present more
convincing evidence to prove the gravity, On 25 September 1997, or after twenty-four
juridical antecedence and incurability of the (24) years of married life together,
former’s condition. Glenn, however, failed in respondent Manuel filed for the declaration of
this respect. Glenn’s testimony is wanting in its nullity on the ground of psychological
material details. Rodelito, on the other hand, incapacity of petitioner Juanita. He alleged
is a blood relative of Glenn. Glenn’s that all throughout their marriage, his wife
statements are hardly objective. Moreover, exhibited an over domineering and selfish
Glenn and Rodelito both referred to Mary attitude towards him. In her Answer,
Grace’s traits and acts, which she exhibited petitioner Juanita alleged that respondent
during the marriage. Hence, there is nary a Manuel is still living with her at their conjugal
proof on the antecedence of Mary Grace’s home in Malolos, Bulacan; that he invented
alleged incapacity. Glenn even testified that, malicious stories against her so that he could
six months before they got married, they saw be free to marry his paramour.
each other almost every day. Glenn saw "a ISSUE:
loving, caring, and well-educated person" in
Mary Grace. We cannot help but note that Dr. Whether or not the totality of evidence
Tayag’s conclusions about the respondent’s presented is enough to sustain a finding of
psychological incapacity were based on the psychological incapacity against petitioner
information fed to her by only one side – the Juanita and/or respondent Manuel.
petitioner – whose bias in favor of her cause
HELD:
cannot be doubted.
The petition for review is hereby granted. The
The Court understands the inherent difficulty
presumption is always in favor of the validity
attendant to obtaining the statements of
of marriage. “Semper praesumitur pro
witnesses who can attest to the antecedence
matrimonio”. In the case at bar, respondent
of a person’s psychological incapacity, but
Manuel failed to prove that his wife’s lack of
such difficulty does not exempt a petitioner
respect for him, her jealousies and obsession
from complying with what the law requires.
with cleanliness, her outbursts and her
While the Court also commiserates with
controlling nature, and her inability to endear
Glenn’s marital woes, the totality of the
herself to his parents are grave psychological
evidence presented provides inadequate
maladies that paralyze her from complying
basis for the Court to conclude that Mary
with the essential obligations of marriage.
Grace is indeed psychologically
Neither is there any showing that these
incapacitated to comply with her obligations
“defects” were already present at the
as Glenn’s spouse
inception of the marriage or that they are
CARATING-SIAYNGCO vs. SIAYNGCO incurable. In fact, the psychiatrist reported
that petitioner was psychologically
G.R. NO. 158896. capacitated to comply with the basic and
October 27, 2004 essential obligations of marriage.

FACTS: The Court of Appeals committed reversible


error in holding that respondent Manuel is
Petitioner Juanita and respondent Manuel psychologically incapacitated. The
were married at civil rites on 27 June 1973 psychological report of Dr. Garcia, which is
and before the Catholic Church on August respondent Manuel’s own evidence,
11, 1973. After discovering that they could contains candid admissions of petitioner
not have a child of their own, the couple Juanita, the person in the best position to
gauge whether or not her husband fulfilled
the essential marital obligations of marriage. had extra-marital affairs with several men
Sexual infidelity, per se, however, does not including a dentist in the AFP, a lieutenant in
constitute psychological incapacity within the the Presidential Security Command, and a
contemplation of the Family Code. It must be Jordanian national. Despite the treatment by
shown that respondent Manuel’s a clinical psychiatrist, Sharon did not stop her
unfaithfulness is a manifestation of a illicit relationship with the Jordanian, whom
disordered personality, which makes him she married and with whom she had two
completely unable to discharge the essential children. When the Jordanian national left the
obligations of the marital state and not country, Sharon returned to David bringing
merely due to his ardent wish to have a child along her two children by the Jordanian
of his own flesh and blood. In herein case, national. David accepted her back and even
respondent Manuel has admitted that: "I had considered the illegitimate children as his
[extra-marital] affairs because I wanted to own. However, Sharon abandoned David to
have a child at that particular point join the Jordanian national with her two
children. Since then, Sharon would only
The psychological report of respondent return to the country on special occasions.
Manuel’s witness, Dr. Garcia, showed that Dra. Natividad Dayan testified that she
the root cause of petitioner Juanita’s conducted a psychological evaluation of
behavior is traceable – not from the inception David and found him to be conscientious,
of their marriage as required by law – but hardworking, diligent, a perfectionist who
from her experiences during the marriage, wants all tasks and projects completed up to
e.g., her in laws’ disapproval of her as they the final detail and who exerts his best in
wanted their son to enter the priesthood, her whatever he does. On the other hand, Dra.
husband’s philandering, admitted no less by Dayan declared that Sharon was suffering
him, and her inability to conceive. Thus, from from Anti-Social Personality Disorder
the totality of the evidence adduced by both exhibited by her blatant display of infidelity;
parties, we have been allowed a window into that she committed several indiscretions and
the Siayngcos’s life and have perceived had no capacity for remorse even bringing
therefrom a simple case of a married couple with her the two children of the Jordanian to
drifting apart, becoming strangers to each live with David. Such immaturity and
other, with the husband consequently falling irresponsibility in handling the marriage like
out of love and wanting a way out. An her repeated acts of infidelity and
unsatisfactory marriage, however, is not a abandonment of her family are indications of
null and void marriage. Mere showing of the said disorder amounting to psychological
“irreconcilable differences” and “conflicting incapacity to perform the essential
personalities” in no wise constitutes obligations of marriage. The trial court
psychological incapacity. declared their marriage null and void on the
DAVID B. DEDEL v. COURT OF APPEALS ground of the psychological incapacity of
and SHARON L. CORPUZ-DEDEL Sharon to perform the essential obligations
of marriage. While the Court of Appeals set
January 29, 2004 aside the trial court’s judgment and ordered
the dismissal of the petition. David’s motion
Facts:
for reconsideration was denied. Hence, he
David Dedel and Sharon Corpuz were appealed to the Supreme Court.
married on September 28, 1996 and May
Issue:
20,1967 in a civil and church wedding,
respectively. They had four children. David Whether or not Sharon’s infidelity is
instituted a case for the nullity of their equivalent to psychologically incapacity.
marriage on account of Sharon’s
psychological incapacity to perform basic
marital obligations. He claimed that Sharon
Held: Facts:
No. Sharon’s infidelity is not equivalent to Leouel Santos, a member of the Army, met
psychologically incapacity. As held in Santos Julia Rosario Bedia in Iloilo City. In
vs. Court of Appeals, “psychological September 1986, they got married. The
incapacity” should refer to no less than a couple latter lived with Julia’s parents. Julia
mental, not physical, incapacity that causes gave birth to their son in 1987. Their
a party to be truly in cognitive of the basic marriage, however, was marred by the
marital covenants that concomitantly must be frequent interference of Julia’s parents, as
assumed and discharged by the parties to averred by Leouel. The couple also
the marriage which as so expressed in Article occasionally quarreled about as to, among
68 of the Family Code, include their mutual other things, when should they start living
obligations to live together, observe love, independently from Julia’s parents. In 1988,
respect and fidelity and render help and Julia went to the US to work as a nurse
support. The law intended to confine the despite Leouel’s opposition. 7 months later,
meaning of “psychological incapacity” to the she and Leouel got to talk and she promised
most serious cases of personality disorders to return home in 1989. She never went
clearly demonstrative of an utter insensitivity home that year. In 1990, Leouel got the
of inability to give meaning and significance chance to be in the US due to a military
to the marriage. Sharon’s sexual infidelity or training. During his stay, he desperately tried
perversion and abandonment do not by to locate his wife but to no avail. Leouel, in
themselves constitute psychological an effort to at least have his wife come home,
incapacity within the contemplation of the filed a petition to nullify their marriage due to
Family Code. Neither could her emotional Julia’s alleged psychological incapacity.
immaturity and irresponsibility be equated Leouel asserted that due to Julia’s failure to
with psychological incapacity. It must be return home or at least communicate with
shown that these acts are manifestations of him even with all his effort constitutes
a disordered personality, which make the psychological incapacity. Julia filed an
respondent completely unable to discharge opposition; she said that it is Leouel who is
the essential obligations of the marital state, incompetent. The prosecutor ascertained
not merely due to her youth, immaturity or that there is no collusion between the two.
sexual promiscuity. At best, the Leouel’s petition is however denied by the
circumstances relied upon by David are lower and appellate court.
grounds for legal separation under Article 55
of the Family Code not for declaring a ISSUE:
marriage void. The grounds for legal Whether or not psychological incapacity is
separation, which need not be rooted in attendant to the case at bar.
psychological incapacity, include physical
violence, moral pressure, civil interdiction, HELD:
drug addiction, habitual alcoholism, sexual
No. Before deciding on the case, the SC
infidelity, abandonment, and the like.
noted that the Family Code did not define the
Decision affirmed. Petition denied.
term “psychological incapacity”, which is
Leouel Santos vs Court of Appeals adopted from the Catholic Canon Law. But
basing it on the deliberations of the Family
G.R. No. 112019 Code Revision Committee, the provision in
January 4, 1995 PI, adopted with less specificity than
expected, has been designed to allow some
Note: This was the first case where the term resiliency in its application. The FCRC did
“psychological incapacity” was discussed by not give any examples of PI for fear that the
the Supreme Court. giving of examples would limit the
applicability of the provision under the
principle of ejusdem generis. Rather, the close to the standard required to decree a
FCRC would like the judge to interpret the nullity of marriage.
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 which,
although not binding on the civil courts, may
be given persuasive effect since the
provision was taken from Canon Law. The
term “psychological incapacity” defies any
precise definition since psychological causes
can be of an infinite variety.
Article 36 of the Family Code cannot be
taken and construed independently of but
must stand in conjunction with, existing
precepts in our law on marriage. PI should
refer to no less than a mental (not physical)
incapacity that causes a party to be truly in
cognitive of the basic marital covenants that
concomitantly must be assumed and
discharged by the parties to the marriage
which (Art. 68), include their mutual
obligations to live together, observe love,
respect and fidelity and render help and
support. The intendment of the law has been
to confine the meaning of PI to the most
serious cases of personality disorders clearly
demonstrative of an utter insensitivity or
inability to give meaning and significance to
the marriage. This psychological condition
must exist at the time the marriage is
celebrated. The SC also notes that PI must
be characterized by (a) gravity, (b) juridical
antecedence, and (c) incurability. The
incapacity must be grave or serious such that
the party would be incapable of carrying out
the ordinary duties required in marriage; it
must be rooted in the history of the party
antedating the marriage, although the overt
manifestations may emerge only after the
marriage; and it must be incurable or, even if
it were otherwise, the cure would be beyond
the means of the party involved.
In the case at bar, although Leouel stands
aggrieved, his petition must be dismissed
because the alleged PI of his wife is not
clearly shown by the factual settings
presented. The factual settings do not come