Whose Last Name Should An Illegitimate Child Use?

Illegitimate children in the Philippines normally use their mother’s maiden last name. But if the biological father acknowledges the child as his own, the child may use his/her father’s last name. This is made possible by Republic Act 9255 that took effect in March 2004.

Let us take a closer look at this law that finally put an end to this blog’s question. Read on.

  1. What is RA 9255?
    • RA 9255 is a law that allows illegitimate children born before or after the effectivity of RA 9255, which covers unregistered births and registered births wherein illegitimate children use the surname of their mother.
  2. What are the requirements in order that an illegitimate child can use the surname of his/her father?
    • Public or private document executed by the father, stating that he acknowledges the child as his. This include:
      • Affidavit at the back of the child’s Certificate of Live Birth
      • Private hand-written instrument (document) made by the father, recognizing the child as his own. This must be handwritten and signed by the father.
    • Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father (AUSF)
      • This is used in cases where recognition is made through a private handwritten instrument
      • Or when the birth was already registered and the mother’s last name is placed as the child’s last name, with or without the father’s recognition.
    • Other documents required if the father is executing a PRIVATE HANDWRITTEN INSTRUMENT. The father must present ANY TWO of the following:
      • Employment record
      • SSS/GSIS record
      • Insurance
      • Certification of membership in any organization
      • Statement of Assets and Liabilities
      • Income Tax Return (ITR)
    • Important note: The child’s consent is necessary if at the time of recognition, the child is already 18 years old or older.
  3. Who may file?
    • Father
    • Mother
    • Child (if of legal age)
    • Guardian
  4. Where to file the public document or AUSF?
    • Local Civil Registry Office (LCRO) of the place where the child was born if the child was born in the Philippines and the AUSF was executed in the Philippines.
    • Local Civil Registry Office of Manila if the AUSF was filed outside the Philippines, but child was born in the Philippines.
    • Local Civil Registry Office of Manila if the child was born outside the Philippines, regardless where the AUSF was filed.
  5. When should the public document or the AUSF be filed?
    • Recognition or acknowledgment made in a public document other than the record of birth or the AUSF shall be registered within 20 days from the date of execution.
  6. Can an illegitimate child whose mother is below 18 years old when the child was born use the surname of his/her father pursuant to RA 9255?
    • Yes, provided that the father of the child has admitted paternity of the child.
  7. Can the original surname of the child in the birth certificate be changed after availing of RA 9255?
    • No. No entries in the birth certificate shall be changed or corrected. Only annotations shall be written in the birth certificate indicating the surname that the child shall use.
  8. For births not yet registered, can the child automatically use the surname of his/her father?
    • Yes, provided that the father executes an Affidavit of Admission of Paternity at the time of registration.

The answers to these questions were lifted from the Philippine Statistics Authority website. For more information on civil registry documents, processes, and other FAQs, keep following my blog šŸ™‚

Stay safe and healthy!




Published by MasterCitizen

I collect citizen facts and the usual stuff that might be important for a Pinoy's everyday life....Subscribe to get updates, opinions, and news.

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