How To Change An Illegitimate Child’s Surname To His or Her Father’s

The general rule is that an illegitimate child must be given his or her mother’s last name. On the child’s birth certificate, only the first and last name fields are populated while the middle name is left blank. However, if the child’s father acknowledges the child through an affidavit of acknowledgment or a private handwritten instrument, then the child’s last name may be changed to that of his or her father’s. Take note too that changing the child’s last name does not change the child’s status from illegitimate to legitimate. Only when the child’s parents marry and file a legitimation will the child’s birthright be changed from illegitimate to legitimate.

What is the process involved in changing an illegitimate child’s last name? Read this.

Requirements:

  1. Valid, government-issued IDs of both parents
  2. Notarized Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father (AUSF)
  3. PSA birth certificate of the child (or a Certified True Copy of the Certificate of Live Birth if the PSA copy is not yet available)
  4. Affidavit of Admission of Paternity or Affidavit of Acknowledgment

For births NOT YET registered:

a. The illegitimate child shall use the surname of the father if a public document is executed by the father, either at the back of the Certificate of Live Birth or in a separate document.

b. If admission of paternity is made through a private handwritten instrument, the child shall use the surname of the father, provided the registration is supported by the following documents:

b.1. AUSF

b.2. If the child is of legal age at the time of filing, the child must provide his consent.

b.3. Any two of the following to prove paternity:

  • Employment records
  • SSS/GSIS records
  • Insurance
  • Certification of membership in any organization
  • Statement of Assets and Liabilities
  • Income Tax Return (ITR)

For births PREVIOUSLY REGISTERED under the last name of the mother:

a. If father expressly recognizes his paternity through the submission of an AUSF, the child may use the father’s last name.

b. If paternity is not expressly recognized by the father, a private handwritten instrument (PHI) with supporting documents must be submitted in order for the child to use the father’s last name.

Who may file the petition:

Under RA 9255 (Act Allowing Illegitimate Children to Use the Surname of their Father), the following individuals may file the petition at the Local Civil Registry office (of the child’s birthplace or place of residency, if the child no longer resides at his or her birthplace).

  1. Affidavit of Admission of Paternity may be filed by the child’s father, mother, guardian, or the child himself/herself if he is already of legal age.
  2. Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father may be filed by the child’s father, mother, guardian, or the child himself/herself if he is already of legal age.
  3. If the proof of filiation is through a Private Handwritten Instrument (PHI), the father shall personally file this at the LCRO for registration.
  4. In case the father is already deceased, the mother, or the child if already of legal age, or the guardian, may file the PHI. (Supporting documents may be required to prove filiation of the PHI will be filed by any of the above-mentioned individuals.)

Where to file the petition:

The Affidavit of Admission of Paternity, Private Handwritten Instrument (PHI), or Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father executed in the Philippines shall be registered at the LCR of the child’s place of birth.

If the Affidavit of Admission of Paternity, PHI, or Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father was executed outside the Philippines, this must be filed at the PFSP of the country of residence.

The affidavits or the PHI must be filed and registered within 20 days from the date of execution. If not, the filing will be considered delayed and the rules on delayed registration under AO No. 1 shall apply.

How the annotations will look like on the child’s birth certificate after the filing and registration of acknowledgment:

I. Without Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father

a. If Affidavit of Admission of Paternity is executed in a separate public document and there is no AUSF executed  by the mother or  the  guardian , in the  absence  of  the  mother,  or  the  person himself ,  the  COLB/ROB  and  on  the  Remarks  Column  of  the Register of Births shall be annotated as follows :

“Acknowledged by (name of father) on (date of execution of the Affidavit of Admission  of Paternity)  under (Registry No. of the Affidavit of Admission of Paternity) .”

b. If a Private Handwritten Instrument  is presented  and there  is no AUSF executed by the mother  or the  guardian , in the  absence  of the mother , or the person himself , the COLB/ROB and on the Remarks Column of the Register of Births shall be annotated as follows:

“Acknowledged by (name of father) under (Registry No. of the Private Handwritten Instrument).”

II. With Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father

a. If Admission of Paternity is  executed  in  a  separate  public document , and an AUSF is  executed  by  the  mother  or  the guardian , in the absence of  the  mother ,  or  the  person  himself , the child shall use the surname of the father . There shall be an annotation in the COLB/ROB and on the Remarks Column of the Register  of Births as follows :

“Acknowledged by (name of father) on (date of ex ecution of the Affidavit of Admission of Paternity) under (Registry No. of the Affidavit of Admission of Paternity). The child shall be known as (full name of the child) pursuant to RA 9255.”

b. If a Private Handwritten Instrument is presented and an AUSF is executed by the mother or the guardian , in the absence  of  the mother , or the person himself, the  child shall  use the  surname  of the father . There shall  be  an  annotation  on  the  COLB/ROB  and on the  Remarks  Column of the  Register  of  Births as follows:

“Acknowledged by (name of father) under (Registry No of the Private Handwritten Instrument).” The child shall be known as (full name of the child) pursuant to RA 9255.”

c. If the AUSF is executed by the mother or the guardian , in the absence of the mother , or the person himself , the child shall use the surname of the father. There shall be an annotation on the COLB/ROB and on the Remarks Column of the Register of Births as follows :

‘The child shall be known as (full name of the child) pursuant to RA  9255.”

References:

Philippine Statistics Authority

Attorneys of the Philippines

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