The DFA will always refer to the authenticated copy of our PSA birth certificate for the accuracy and completeness of our names. The name, and how it is written, on the birth certificate is what will appear on the passport.
Miguel Oben is an illegitimate child. He has always used his mother’s last name as his surname (Oben); he leaves the middle name field blank in all of his documents and IDs. When he applied for a passport, he was required to present a copy of his PSA birth certificate. He was shocked to find that his name on his birth certificate is Miguel Villanueva Oben – Villanueva being his biological father’s last name! He verified this against the copy of the LCR where his birth was registered and got the same results. When he presented his birth certificate to the DFA, his passport application was denied.
What must be done in such cases?
Miguel was left with no choice but to have the issue on his birth certificate rectified at the Local Civil Registry where his birth was registered. Since he is an illegitimate child and his father’s name does not appear on his birth certificate (except for his last name that somehow found its way to Miguel’s middle name field), he should continue carrying his mother’s last name while the middle name field must be left blank.
While waiting for the results from the Local Civil Registry (which could take between 6 months to a year), Miguel tried appealing his case to the DFA. It turns out that he needs the passport to visit his mother who suffered a stroke in Guam, USA. Luckily, he was able to support this claim with documents from his mother’s doctors.
Although it is not customary for the DFA to work around identity and documentary issues of passport applicants, there are certain cases when the application is reconsidered and additional documents are required. Cases similar to Miguel’s may be required to present an Affidavit of One and The Same Person in support of the IDs and documents he presented bearing his name as Miguel Oben. Apart from the said Affidavit, Miguel also attached a signed letter to the DFA stating that he shall be presenting the annotated copy of his birth certificate upon renewal of his passport.
Again, these kinds of issues are handled and evaluated by the DFA on a case-to-case basis. The results of the evaluation are entirely up to the discretion of DFA’s experts. At the end of the day, the public is expected to adhere to the policies of the DFA as published in their website and as posted in their offices.