After Separation or Annulment Comes Child Support: To Give or Not To Give?

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When a married couple separates, whether on their own terms or as prescribed by an annulment proceeding, child custody and support become a fundamental issue between the parties.  With whom should the children stay?  How often can their father / mother see them?  How will their basic needs be met?

In the Philippines, custody of children under seven years old is automatically granted to the mother as mandated by Article 213 of the Family Code.  This is applicable whether the child’s birthright is legitimate or illegitimate.  In the same manner, the father is expected to continue providing the needs of his children and not leave the mother to fend for the family on her own.

This arrangement is easier said than done as most post-annulment / separation issues stem from the fact that fathers fail to consistently provide for their children.  Each has his own reason for not being able to live up to what is expected of him (as the provider); others admit that they chose to discontinue financially supporting their children through the estranged wife because of trust issues.

In the midst of these marital (and extra-marital) issues are the children and their escalating living necessities.  This blog receives a lot of questions about child support and legal actions against fathers who fail to provide for their children.  We all have that one friend who is perpetually asking about means to compel her ex-husband to give and give more as the children’s basic needs rapidly become anything but basic.

We ran a research on child support, as dictated by Philippine laws, in an attempt to shed light in this touchy issue.  We hope these information help put your questions on child support to rest, or at least lead you towards the right decisions in upholding the rights of your children.

How much should a father give as financial support to his children?

According to the Family Code (Articles 194, 201, and 202):

Support comprises everything indispensable for sustenance, dwelling, clothing, medical attendance, education and transportation, in keeping with the financial capacity of the family.

The education of the person entitled to be supported referred to in the preceding paragraph shall include his schooling or training for some profession, trade, or vocation, even beyond the age of majority.  Transportation shall include expenses in going to and from school, or to and from place of work.

The amount of support, in the cases referred to in Articles 195 and 196, shall be in proportion to the resources or means of the giver and to the necessities of the recipient.

Support in the cases referred to in the preceding article shall be reduced or increased proportionately, according to the reduction or increase of the necessities of the recipient and the resources or means of the person obliged to furnish the same.

According to the Family Code:

  • The amount of support shall be based on the children’s needs and the father’s capacity to provide (earn).
  • The father is obligated to support his children’s education even after they have reached the age of emancipation.

Can I demand for support from my child’s father even if he is married to another woman (and my child, effectively, is illegitimate)?

Article 195 of the Family Code provides that both legitimate and illegitimate children have the right to receive financial support from their parents.  However, an illegitimate child’s right to support shall only arise if he was duly recognized by his father.

An illegitimate child may prove that he is recognized by his biological father through the following:

  1. Record of birth appearing in the civil register or a final judgment – with the father accomplishing the Affidavit of Acknowledgment / Admission of Paternity found at the back of his birth certificate.
  2. An admission of illegitimate filiation in a public document or a private handwritten instrument and signed by the parent concerned.

If the father refuses to recognize the child, the mother may seek to the court’s assistance by filing a Petition for Compulsory Recognition and Support.  This will entail hearings and other court proceedings and the mother must be prepared to fight it out in public.

If I win the petition, can I demand the father of my child to reimburse the expenses I incurred in the years that he did not provide for my child?

No; the father’s obligation to financially support the child begins from the date of judicial demand, or once the Petition for Compulsory Recognition and Support is approved by the court.

Do I have the right to demand for financial support from my ex-husband even if he is jobless?

In cases when the children’s father is jobless and has no means of income, financial support may be derived from the separate properties.  If the father does not have a separate property to liquidate, the funds may be taken from his and the children’s mother’s conjugal properties.  It shall be treated as an advance and will be deducted from the ex-husband’s share of the estate when it is liquidated.

Can I sue my ex-husband if he continues to ignore his parental responsibilities?

Filing a case in court to compel the children’s father to continue his obligation to provide for the children should be the last resort.  Yes, a mother can seek the court’s assistance in demanding for child support.  A father’s failure to comply with his obligation despite repeated reminders is a violation of RA 7610 (Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation, and Discrimination Act, or RA 9262 – Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004) and is a criminal offense.


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22 thoughts on “After Separation or Annulment Comes Child Support: To Give or Not To Give?

  1. hi i have a friend who si annulled already with his wife.and may anak po sila isa. simula maliit pa nagsusustento sya sa bata until now.10k every month binibigay nya. nagbibigay din sya for tuition. ngaun gusto nung nanay na dagdagan pa ung 10k everymonth. obligado po ba ung friend ko sa gusto nya? by the way seaman po ung friend ko at natatakot sya kasi baka guluhin sya nung ex wife nya sa company na pinagttrabahuan nya at baka harangin sya eh nagbibigay naman sya ng sustento.and may banta din ung ex nya sa kanya.salamat po

    1. Hi Angel,

      Pwede po itong pag usapan sa Family Court.

      Ayon sa batas natin, ang magulang ay obligadong magbigay ng suporta sa anak base sa kanyang earning capacity at base din sa actual na needs ng bata.

      Pero ang pag officialize ng amount, kung hindi mapagkakasunduan ng dating mag asawa, ay dapat gawin in the presence of a lawyer.


  2. Hi po! Yung monthly financial support na ex-husband ko for our son nag-stop na, until December 2016 lang. Na-grant na yung annulment namin just October 2017. Nag-early retirement sia sa Phil Army. Paano ko po ba mapa-continue yung financial support niya for our son? Do I have to bring it to court? Thank you.

  3. Illigetimate ang anak ko pero acknowledged ng ama Nya,,, in long 5 years d sya binigyan ng support kahit nsa abroad sya,,,pwede po ba hingin sa kanya na I adopt ko sarili ko anak at makipag sakin apelyido Nya?,,, ano pa dapat gawin?

  4. tanong lg po s case ko po na isang seaman ako s ngayon nasa process of annulment n kmi ng asawa ko tpos hinihiling nya na suportahan ko ng 50 % unng anak namin na 13 yrs old na ngayon.anong ibig sabihin na 50% na suporta?kng basehan ng contrata namin s poea s aming agency san un kunin?sa basic namin o buo naming sahod?hintay ko po sagot nyo sa problema ko.ty

  5. Tanong ko lang po yung tatay ng anak ko dati nasa saudi nagbibigay ng 20k buwan nun hanggang sa bumababa na naging 11k, minsan di nagpapadala tapos naging 10k, ngayon 4k nalang wala na siya aa saudi hindi na bumalik, hinihingan ko po na pang tuition fee ng anak sa halagang 30k, wala po binibigay…puwede ko po ba siya ireklamo dahil sa kung ano lang daw gusto nya ipadala? Hiwalay napo kami pero hindi pa kami annulled. .

  6. Sir common law wife ako…may illegittimate daughter ako na 9 years old..yung hindi pa nagkakasakit asawa ko ay well provided po kami..dahil businessmen po sya sa amin.yung 2011 nagsimula sya magkasakit at bed ridden na ay wala po akong natanggap na supporta ng kinuha sya ng mga kapatid nya para alagaan at gumastos..2013 nag abroad po ako dahil kailangan ng supporta ang anak namin..2014 namatay po asawa ko at doon ako sa abroad..2016 ng december ay bumalik ako sa pinas..nakuha ko po ang sss pension for illegittimate child…ang tanong ko po may share po ba ang anak ko sa naiwan ng tatay ng anak ko…may lupa po sya at copras at yung globe nag rent sa lupa nya….paano po malaman yung assest na naiwan nya..may legal wife sya but separated sila verbal lang at may anak sila na isa nasa 30 anyos na ang edad at may anak na rin….may habol pa po ba anak ko sa papa nya na patay na….? …

    1. Hi Bamboo,

      Acknowledged ba ng asawa mo ang mga anak ninyo? Pumirma ba siya sa likod ng birth certificate nila?

      Kung oo, may habol sila.

      Kung hindi siya pumirma, mahihirapan kang mag claim. Pero try mo pa din mag inquire sa abogado kung papano ang pwedeng gawin.


  7. 10 mos old ang bata (illegitimate) ng nagpaalam na magbakasyon, pero iniwan ang bata sa magulang ng babae at sumama sa ibang lalaki.parang inabandona ng babae ang anak, walang komunikasyon.Ang ama ng bata ay regular na ngpadala para sa kanyang anak.4 na taon na ang bata ngayon.Naka rehistro na walang middle name pero papadalahan ng Letter of Acknowledge sa hindi pa magsimula ang pasukan ngayung taon.Ang tanong”Sino ngayon ang may karapatan na mag palaki sa bata?Ang magulang ng ina ng bata, o lolo at lola ng bata?Ang ama ng bata? O ang ina na ng abandona sa bata ?

    1. Hi Oliver,

      Kung mapapatunayan na inabandona na nga ng nanay ang kanyang anak, maaaring matanggal sa kanya ang karapatan sa custody ng bata. Sa mga ganitong kaso, ang korte ang magdedetermine kung sino ang dapat magalaga sa bata. Ang isasa-alangalang ng korte lagi ay ang kapakanan ng bata, hindi ang relationship niya sa mga kamag-anak.


  8. ang ttay po ng anak ko nsa canada na at my asawa na di po kmi kasal nka apelyido po skin anak ko pero 1 yr ago po nkapgbgay nman sya ng suporta pero ng nkapunta n.po canada wala na ako contact dto pinas parents ba sa.anak ko??khit po sa pgaaral lng??maari ko po ba mgmit na evidence ung mga resibo na katunayan n ina acknowledge nya anak ko??

    1. Hi Ronash,

      Ang karapatan ng illegitimate na anak na maghabol ng suporta mula sa kanyang tatay ay nakabase kung acknowledged ba siya ng tatay niya sa birth certificate niya. Kung wala ito, mahihirapan kayong ilaban ang pag demand ng support mula sa kanya. Pwede kang mag inquire sa lawyer, sila ang makakapag sabi sa iyo ng paraan kung papano makakapag demand ng sustento.


  9. Ask po ako pwde p po bang humingi ng support yong bata na 8 yrs ols sa papa nyang seaman kahit andito na yong bata Japan pero apilyido pa rin nag papa nya dala dala nya?
    Hiningian ko kc ng 5k lang every moth ilagay sa bank accnt ko sa pinas pero hindi po nagbigay…katwiran po ng ama kc di raw sa bata yong accnt kaya ayaw magbigay po… paano po ang sitwasyong yan? Sana mareplayan nyo po…thank you po

  10. Nasa Saudi ang tatay ng 2 kong anak, pero di regular nagbibigay ng support. Laging nagdadahilan pero nasa poder ng in-laws ko ang anak nya sa dati nyang kinasama at doon nagpapadala. Ano ang pwedi kong gawin o ikaso?

  11. Ask po if pede po ba mag a annul wthout knowing of ur husband,pede po ba mapawalang bisa ang ksal ng walang pinipirmahang dukumento ng aswa mo

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