Tag Archive: Court Order


5 May 20

There are certain birth certificate errors that need the services of a lawyer and must undergo court proceedings.  These cases will be determined by the Local Civil Registry office that will evaluate the error in your birth certificate.  Remember, before any correction or petition can be filed or applied to your birth certificate, the LCR must first review your documents.  So the only group that could advise you if you need to escalate your birth certificate issue to the courts is the LCR.

What is the process of correcting a birth certificate entry through Judicial Correction?

  1. Contact a lawyer who will prepare the Petition for Correction of Entry.
  2. Lawyers shall file the Petition in the Regional Trial Court. The fee for filing the petition in the Regional Trial Court is P160.00.
  3. The Petition will be raffled and assigned to a branch of the Regional Trial Court.
  4. The assigned Regional Trial Court shall issue an Order for the publication of its Order in a newspaper of general circulation for three consecutive weeks. Fee for publication varies.
  5. The Order must contain the date of the first hearing.
  6. During the first hearing, the lawyer will present compliance of the jurisdictional requirements like the publication of the Order in a newspaper of general circulation.
  7. After establishing compliance with jurisdictional requirements, the petitioner will be presented in court to testify. The court may assign the Clerk of Court to receive evidence.
  8. During the hearing, it is possible that opposition may appear contesting the petition. If no opposition appears, the Clerk of Court will receive the petitioner’s evidence.
  9. After the presentation of evidence, the Court will rule on the Petition.
  10. If the decision is favorable, the Court will order the Office of City Registrar to correct the entry in the civil registry document (birth/marriage/death certificate of the petitioner).

The corrections are likely to be applied to your birth certificate after several months or even a year, depending on how complex the case is.  It is best that you find a good and diligent lawyer who will keep track of your case’s progress in court.

Source: www.psa.gov.ph

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When a child is born out of wedlock, the child carries the mother’s family name unless the father gives his consent for his child to use his last name and acknowledges him on paper.  The date of marriage field on the child’s birth certificate must also be left blank until the parents are married, if and when.

There are cases when the child’s parents would place false information on their child’s birth certificate, declaring themselves to be married when they are not.  Some single moms manage to include the child’s father’s last name on the child’s birth certificate, without seeking the latter’s consent.  In their desire to save their child from being labeled illegitimate, they end up falsifying a public document, never mind the consequences it will eventually bring on their child.

So how does one correct the false information written on a birth certificate?

Nerissa and Joel were both only 22 years old when their eldest child, Denver, was born.  Because they did not want their firstborn to suffer the stigma of being an illegitimate child, and since they do have plans of getting married later on, they opted for Denver to carry his father’s last name.  Apart from that, they declared January 27, 2007 as their date of marriage – in reality, this was the date when they officially became a couple.

Fast forward to 10 years later when Denver, now a fifth grader and a prized athlete of their school, needs to secure a passport so he can compete in a swim meet in Singapore.  His mom prepared all the documents needed for submission to the DFA, including and most importantly, Denver’s PSA birth certificate.

It was only then that Nerissa realized that Denver’s birth certificate still bears the fake date of marriage of his parents and his last name is still that of his biological father’s.  Nerissa and Joel have since gone their separate ways; Nerissa is a single parent to Denver while Joel is married and is already residing abroad.

True enough, when they presented the documents at the DFA, Nerissa was asked to submit a copy of her and Joel’s “marriage certificate”.  When she said that she does not have a marriage certificate because she is, in fact, not married, Denver’s passport application was put on hold.

Mother and son went home brokenhearted and clearly, unsure of the next steps they need to make to clarify the issue.

Nerissa wanted to work on two things: first, to change her son’s last name to her maiden last name and second, to rectify the false date of marriage declared on the child’s birth certificate.

In this case, changing Denver’s last name should be the easier task.  She can file a petition in court to request for her son’s last name to be dropped and changed with hers.  As of the moment, Philippine courts grant these types of petitions only on the following grounds:

  1. When the name is or sounds ridiculous, dishonorable, or extremely difficult to write or pronounce;
  2. When the change results as a legal consequence such as legitimation;
  3. When the change will avoid confusion;
  4. When one has continuously used and been known since childhood by a Filipino name, and as unaware of alien parentage;
  5. A sincere desire to adopt a Filipino name to erase signs of former alienage, all in good faith and without prejudicing anybody; and
  6. When the surname causes embarrassment and there is no showing that the desired change of name was for a fraudulent purpose or that the change of name would prejudice public interest.

Obviously, Nerissa has a lot of explaining and justifying to do before the court.  She needs to justify why she is now seeking to change the last name of Denver and prove that the change is for her son’s best interest.

The fake date of marriage on Denver’s birth certificate is a case all on its own.  Dropping the fake date of marriage will be handled through a court order and with the assistance of Nerissa’s lawyer.  These types of cases take time and may cost Nerissa more than she would have bargained for.

Placing false and inaccurate information on civil registry documents is illegal and considered a crime in our country.  You may get away with it for a time but remember that whoever owns the document will eventually suffer the consequences of having false information on his or her birth or marriage certificate.

Chips And Nibblers (1)

Closet Queen

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Illegitimate children are able to carry their father’s last name by virtue of an Affidavit of Acknowledgment and an Affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father (AUSF).  Should the parents decide to get married later on, the illegitimate children’s birth rights may also be changed from “illegitimate” to “legitimate” through the process of Legitimation Due to Subsequent Marriage (of parents).

In some cases though, the father exits the picture and the mother is left to take care of the children on her own.  This can go from bad to worse when the father ends up marrying a different woman, completely abandoning his responsibilities with his children from his previous relationship.

Such is the case of Patty, a single mother of 2 children, born 2 years apart.  She is a call center agent and is raising her kids with the help of her parents.  Her boyfriend, Alex, left her and their children before her youngest son was even one year old.  He said that he was leaving for the U.S. to work and promised to send financial support for the children’s needs and education.  A few months after he left, Alex told Patty that he needs to marry his high school classmate who is now a U.S. citizen in order for him to legally work in Florida.  “Marriage for convenience lang.”

Patty’s worst fears were confirmed when she received an email from Alex telling her that he and his wife will be migrating to New Zealand soon and he could no longer promise to send his regular support for their children.  A few months after that, Patty found out that Alex and his new wife were expecting their first child.  She was devastated.

Patty’s children carry Alex’s last name in all of their identifications, including their PSA birth certificates.  Now that Patty is left to raise both kids on her own, she would like for the children to drop their father’s last name and carry hers instead.  She would not allow for Alex to have the honor of giving his name to his children when he has now clearly abandoned them for his new family.

Question is, can Patty have Alex’s last name dropped from the children’s birth certificates?

Based on the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) website, www.psa.gov.ph, an illegitimate child has the right to carry his father’s last name for as long as the father duly acknowledged him by virtue of the following:

  • The father executed an Affidavit of Acknowledgement
  • The father presents a Private Handwritten Instrument (PHI)
  • The father acknowledged the child at the back of the birth certificate or in a separate public instrument.

With respect to any of the above conditions, the child’s birth certificate bears his father’s last name as his last name.  Although he is still considered “illegitimate” (since his parents were not married at the time of his birth), he is given the right to use his father’s last name.

Dropping or removing the father’s last name from the children’s birth certificate, even if their birth right is illegitimate, must go through a court order.  It is not considered a clerical error and therefore, changing the child’s last name cannot be done by simply filing a petition for clerical error.

Source: https://psa.gov.ph/civilregistration/problems-and-solutions/born-after-august-3-1988

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Parental Travel Permit

Paul and Becca’s relationship has always been shaky. Even while they were dating, they would have episodes of verbal and physical abuse, mostly inflicted by her to him than the opposite. They parted ways before graduating from college only to reunite a few years later when Becca’s mother passed away and she needed someone to lean on. Paul offered friendship but Becca wanted more. Paul obliged and the rest is history.

Shortly into their first year of getting back together, Becca gave birth to their daughter, Kathy. Paul had big plans for his young family and worked harder in the small restaurant business that he put up after college.

So he was really surprised when Becca announced that she is leaving him and will be moving back in with her siblings. At first, she took their baby with her and would not let Paul see her unless he has groceries and other supplies for their child. Later on, Becca would let Paul borrow Kathy during weekends and on trips to Paul’s side of the family. One unexpected day, Becca’s sister brought Kathy to Paul’s condominium, complete with the child’s clothes and other belongings. She said that Becca ran off with a guy she met at work and they do not know where she is. And that Paul needs to take in Kathy now that her mother is nowhere to be found.

Kathy grew up under her father’s care. Paul provided handsomely for his only child; now that Kathy is eight years old, he wants to take her to Hong Kong Disneyland and see Queen Elsa in person. Kathy is ecstatic and could not wait for summer vacation so she and Daddy can finally fly out.

There is one catch though.

Since Kathy is an illegitimate child, Paul needs to secure a Parental Travel Permit from Becca so he can be allowed to take Kathy out of the country for their vacation. But Becca is nowhere to be found. From the day Kathy was brought to Paul’s condominium almost eight years ago, they have not heard from Becca anymore. They went to Becca’s parents’ hometowns, to her friends and colleagues; Kathy even spent one whole summer vacation at Becca’s sister’s house in Laguna hoping that Becca would drop by, call, or send a letter or email. They searched through the internet and in every available social media channel where she may be maintaining an account. But all their efforts were futile.

No one knows where she is or if she is still alive. She has literally abandoned, not just her daughter and her family, but her entire life. She literally disappeared without a trace.

Paul is faced with a dilemma. How does he take Kathy to Disneyland without that Parental Travel Permit?

Article 176 of the Family Code of the Philippines states that the biological mother is vested with the sole parental right over her illegitimate child (or children). This is the reason why biological fathers need to seek the mother’s permission to take their children on out-of-town trips. But what if the mother has gone missing like in the case of Becca?

The fact that custody rights are given to mothers says a lot about the woman’s unique ability to nurture children and families. However, there are also cases when the mother is seen to be unfit to care for her kids. There are those who choose not to be responsible for raising their children and therefore, give up their custody rights to the biological father of their children (or any other family member, friends, or complete strangers as in the case of adoption) while others are compelled to give up their right because of personal circumstances that affect their abilities to mother their children. In such cases, the custody is given to the biological father – but not without a proper court order to support the transfer of custody rights.

That is exactly what Paul worked on in order to take his daughter to their dream vacation. He sought the services of a lawyer friend and together, they studied his situation and how they can be given a court order stating that Paul now has the sole custody over Kathy.

Fortunately for Paul, Becca’s siblings threw in their support for Kathy’s sake. They testified that their sister has not had any communication with them or with Kathy for almost eight years now. They heard somewhere that she has migrated to the U.S. but they have yet to confirm this news. They also confirmed that it was Paul who has been providing for Kathy’s education, shelter, and other basic needs ever since she was born.

Once Paul is granted that court order, he and Kathy can begin exploring the world. Both of them are hopeful that Paul’s petition would return positive results. If Paul is granted the custody, they would not even need a DSWD Travel Clearance if he and Kathy are traveling together.

For more information on Travel Clearance and Parental Travel Permits, please visit the DSWD website at www.dswd.gov.ph

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