Tag Archive: PSA Birth Certificate


06- 16

Getting married is a once-in-a-lifetime event and all brides-to-be want nothing less than a perfect wedding day.  From the weather, to the place of ceremony, to the littlest of details in the bride’s wedding gown, everything should be flawless.  All because in the Philippines, you’re only supposed to marry once.

Over the years, weddings have become more and more elaborate, more detailed, and more personal.  From the basic white and ecru color motifs, couples have learned to be more bold and creative with their choices in colors, clothing, and quite recently, even the look and feel of the ceremony and reception areas.  Yes, weddings have become more fun and meaningful, yet it has also elevated the costs involved in achieving the desired “themes and motifs”, as wedding organizers would often say.

So how exactly do you plan, organize, and celebrate the perfect dream wedding without breaking the bank?  We researched on this topic and found quite a handful of information from wedding suppliers, organizers, and even brides themselves!  We are sharing everything that we’ve gathered so far and hope these could help you plan the perfect, yet not too expensive, wedding day for you.

  1. Choose the date and time.

According to wedding bloggers, you actually need to decide on the date and time before you even decide on the budget.  A wedding in June could be cheaper than a wedding in December or February since the latter months are considered by most businesses as peak months.

  1. Draft your entourage and guest list.

After you’ve confirmed the date, it is easier to list down the people you wish to be present on your wedding day, including and most importantly, your wedding entourage.  Save up on call toll charges by creating an online group chat or call them through the internet.

  1. Budget. Budget. Budget.

Now that you have a pretty good idea how many people will attend your big day, it is time to work on the wedding budget.  Before deciding how much you intend to spend, you would need to first discuss who will shoulder which expenses.

Filipino wedding traditions are very different from Western culture where the father of the bride shoulders majority, if not all, of the wedding expenses.  Filipino parents seldom shoulder their kids’ weddings unless extremely necessary.  If at all, it is the groom’s parents who share more in the wedding expenses than the bride’s.  Case in point: if you can’t afford your wedding yet, how do you plan to manage a lifelong marriage?

You will have to create a long list of items that need to be purchased, built, and sewn.  Keep in mind too that expenses do not end when you’ve made your way to the altar and exchanged “I dos”.  Your suppliers, drivers, relatives, and other people who will be helping out in your celebration need to be fed, sheltered, and dressed up too.  Prepare your petty cash for incidental expenses that are sure to crop up during the day itself.

  1. Finalize your booking for the ceremony and reception venue.

Weddings are commonly held during the dry months, beginning in December to the early weeks of June.  Top wedding destinations are the cool cities of Tagaytay, Batangas, and Baguio, while more adventurous couples are also keen on celebrating their union by the seashores of La Union, Boracay, Cebu, and Bohol.  The choices are endless and choosing could be fun except you have a budget and guests to consider.  Choose a venue that is not too far from where most of your guests will be coming from.  If you are on a tight budget, we suggest that you hold your ceremony and reception in the same place.  This cuts your expenses on rental fees, decorations, and travel by more than half.

  1. Book your wedding suppliers.

When choosing wedding suppliers, gather as much information from other newlyweds, relatives, and friends as you can.  This gives you first-hand information on the suppliers’ quality of service, negotiable rates, and other important details.  Remember, you do not need to “outsource” everything.  You can borrow, ask for, and create things on your own.  Wedding organizers were non-existent in the ‘80s and ‘90s but are now virtually indispensable.  If they were able to hold grand weddings in the past without the expensive services of a coordinator, why can’t you now?  Ask for your friends’ assistance and delegate assignments to your bride’s maids.  You’d be surprised to find out how much your “squad” wants to be part of your wedding preparations!

If you should spend (or splurge!) on suppliers, you’d be wise to focus on your caterer and photographers.  Your guests will remember your wedding more from the kind and quality of food you served and the candid and wacky photos they will be posting in social media.

And then again, if you have a brother who cooks mean dishes and friends who like to take beautiful photos, you can consider yourself one blessed woman!

  1. Save-the-dates and Wedding Invitations

If you can tap the limitless reach of social media to let everyone know when you’re getting married, use that.  Save-the-date cards add to your expenses and do not do much in ensuring that your guests will show up, so why bother?

While there are hundreds of wedding invitation suppliers who undoubtedly could come up with the most creative invitations for you, remember, you can easily copy a design online and print these yourself!  Invitations end up in people’s waste baskets or filed in a long forgotten shelf anyway, so why spend so much on these stuff?  Take a trip to the bookstore and channel the Martha Stewart in you.  Creating your wedding invitations could also be a good bonding opportunity with your mom, your sisters, and friends.

  1. Buying your wedding apparel.

Divisoria and Baclaran boast of designer quality fabrics that you can send to your trusty seamstress who can create lovely pieces for you and your groom.  If you are paying for your entourage’s gowns, then these two places in Manila are your best bets.  Buying off the rack is convenient but can be too pricey.  Also, expect to lose some weight (or gain some if you’re the type who eats when stressed) after all the stressful wedding preparations so having your gown done by a seamstress will prove to be more convenient when you need some adjustments  done before the big day (because having your gowns altered by designer stores cost money!).

  1. Wedding Permits, Licenses, and Seminars

Now these are the things your wedding suppliers, not even your expensive wedding coordinators, will remind you to accomplish.  Ironically, all your pricey wedding preparations will go to waste if you fail to secure the necessary documents for getting married.

First, you need to secure a Marriage License.  Keep in mind that a marriage license is only valid for 120 days.

Also, secure copies of your PSA birth certificates and CENOMAR (Certificate of No Marriage).  Check your documents for spelling errors and other inaccuracies.

Attend required seminars and retreats (required by either your parish or your municipality) and secure the necessary certifications.  These requirements vary per municipality and parish.

Word of the wise: Accomplish all permits, documents, and seminars yourselves, do not hire the services of fixers no matter how busy you think you are.

  1. Account your expenses

Keep a journal of your expenses and mark off all items that have been paid off and those that will be settled at a later date.  Keep track of your checks, receipts, acknowledgments, and other proofs of payment to avoid confusion and unnecessary expenses.

  1. Hold a pre-wedding gathering of your entourage and suppliers.

It does not have to be fancy; you just need to get them together to ease any tension and encourage coordination.  This is best done a week before the big day.  Include a rehearsal of sorts just to fine tune each person’s responsibility and involvement in the occasion.

Remember, you cannot achieve perfection so leave room for last-minute emergencies and allow your team some errors and oversights.  No matter how hard you prepare, something is bound to go wayward and it’s all part of the fun and excitement.

So enjoy the moment while it lasts.  You will soon realize that preparing for a wedding that lasts for a day pales in comparison to preparing for the marriage that is expected to last a lifetime.

Best wishes!

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06 - 05 (2)

Minerva was already 23 years old when she learned that her father is married with children before she was born.  She learned about it the hard way – when she landed her first job, her supervisor turned out to be her father’s eldest son from his previous marriage, making him her half-brother.

She did her research and found out that her father’s marriage with his previous wife is still in effect; he had not filed for an annulment and in fact, has been sending financial support for his children while staying with Minerva and her mom!

What proved to be more difficult and confusing for Minerva is the fact that her status in her birth certificate is ‘Legitimated’ (due to subsequent marriage).  As far as she knows, she was born before her father (who was presumed to be single then) and mother were ‘married’.  They got married when Minerva was 7 years old, she even stood as flower girl during their wedding!

Now that it looks like her father is not even legally capable of ‘marrying’ her mother in the first place, what does that make of her ‘legitimation’?

What is ‘Legitimation’?

According to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) website, legitimation is a remedy by means of which those who in fact were not born in wedlock and should, therefore, be considered illegitimate, are by fiction, considered legitimate, it being supposed that they were born when their parents were already validly married.

Who can be ‘Legitimated’?

Legitimation may be done for children who were conceived before their biological parents were married, provided that their parents were not disqualified by any impediments to marry each other.

For a child to be considered legitimated by subsequent marriage, it is necessary that:

  • The parents could have legally contracted marriage at the time the child was conceived;
  • That the child has been acknowledged by the parents before or after the celebration of their marriage; and
  • The acknowledgment was made with the consent of the child, if age or with the approval of the court, if a minor, unless it has been made in the certificate before a court of record, or in any authentic writing.

In all aspects, Minerva’s legitimation would have been legal and binding except for the fact that her father is married to another woman at the time he ‘married’ Minerva’s mother.  Effectively, this invalidates Minerva’s legitimation because the marriage between her parents is invalid.  In fact, she is not even qualified for legitimation.

Can a legitimation be cancelled?

Yes it can be cancelled by filing a petition for cancellation before the court where the petitioner’s birth certificate was registered.  The petitioner will need the assistance and guidance of a lawyer.  When approved, the civil registrar shall again annotate in the birth certificate that the ‘legitimation’ (also a previous annotation) is hereby cancelled.

Source: www.psa.gov.ph

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05 - 30 (1)

Percy has been working as an Overseas Filipino Worker in South Korea for almost five years when he met Kim, a Korean national.  He expressed his desire to stay permanently in South Korea and work without the need for contracts with a Philippine agency.  Upon learning this, Kim offered Percy a deal: for 500,000 SKW, Kim will marry Percy so he can gain legal residency in South Korea.  

Percy readily agreed to the deal.  But instead of celebrating the marriage in South Korea, both of them decided to come to the Philippines and get married before a judge in Manila.  In less than two months, Kim and Percy were married.

Unfortunately upon their return to South Korea, Percy was diagnosed with tuberculosis and was advised by his doctor to refrain from doing hard labor.  He found it difficult to find a job without a valid medical clearance that is required in most office jobs in the city.  In the end, he and Kim decided it would be best for Percy to stay in the Philippines while he undergoes treatment for his condition.

Back home, Percy realized that living permanently abroad may not be a good idea after all.  Given his condition, he would rather be around his family who are ready and willing to take care of him while he is ill.  He called Kim and told her that he will no longer be coming back to South Korea.  Since Kim already received Percy’s full payment for their deal, she simply agreed with his decision and wished him well.

A few years later, Percy reunited with his childhood sweetheart and in a few months, both of them decided to get married.  Thinking that his ‘marriage for convenience’ with Kim was invalid anyway, he went ahead and began preparing for his wedding.  When he requested for a copy of his CENOMAR, he received a copy with the details of his previous marriage with Kim.

Apparently, a ‘marriage for convenience’ is valid for as long as it satisfied all the legal requisites of marriage.  Both he and Kim were of legal age when they presented themselves before the judge, they were able to present all the required documents, and the marriage was celebrated by a duly authorized solemnizing officer.

Pero hindi naman namin mahal ang isa’t isa nung nagpakasal kami.  Pinakasalan ko lang siya dahil sa citizenship ko sa South Korea.

According to the Family Code of the Philippines, the possibility that the parties in a marriage might have no real intention to establish a life together is insufficient grounds to nullify the union.  Therefore, even if the reason for Percy and Kim’s wedding was merely for him to gain permanent residency in South Korea, Philippine laws still recognize their marriage as binding and legal.

Given all these, Percy might find it difficult to build a case for annulment against Kim.

This case is also applicable if the wedding between a foreign national and a Filipino was held abroad – for as long as all legal requisites in that country were fulfilled and the marriage was recognized as valid, Philippine laws will also consider the marriage valid and legal, even if the reason for getting married is merely for convenience.

There is no convenient way to end a marriage for convenience.

References:

www.gov.ph

www.pao.gov.ph

www.manilatimes.net

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05 - 29

The Philippines is the bastion of Christianity in Asia with over 93% of our population listed as Christians; we ranked 5th worldwide according to a 2011 report of the Philippine Daily Inquirer.  Filipinos take religiosity pretty seriously.  To us, it is not just some form of affiliation or membership, it is a legacy passed on to us, an identity we must protect and preserve at all costs.

And so it IS a big deal to have to find out that your religion, as written in your birth certificate, is anything but Catholic or Christian. 

Such was the case of Arabah Joy Quinto, a Roman Catholic by birth.  After receiving an Exchange Scholar grant from her high school, she immediately applied for a passport at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).  She thought she had all the needed documents prepared until she was required to submit a certificate from the Office of Muslim Affairs (OMA)!  Apparently, her birth certificate shows that her parents are Muslims.  She insisted that her entire family has always been devout Roman Catholics, all of them baptized by the Catholic Church as supported by their birth certificates.  The DFA would have none of it; either she presents the required OMA or have the entries in her birth certificate corrected.

How to Correct a ‘Wrong Religion’?

There are two ways of rectifying incorrect entries in a birth certificate:

  1. Under RA No. 9048 or Clerical Error Law (as amended by RA 10172) if the matter involved correcting typographical errors in the First Name, Place of Birth, Day and month of Birth , or Gender.
  2. Through a petition in court if the correction is not covered by any of the above cases.

Correcting the entries in ‘Religion’ is not included in the errors covered by RA 9048 or 10172.

In this case, Arabah Joy needs to file a petition for Correction of Entry in the Regional Trial Court of the place where her birth was registered.  Once filed, the court shall set the case for a hearing, followed by publication of the correction in a local newspaper.

As soon as the petition is granted, the LCR of Arabah’s birth place will receive a certified copy of the court’s decision.  The LCR will be directed to apply the necessary annotations on Arabah’s birth certificate, so that the same shall now reflect her parents’ correct religion.

The first corrected copy of Arabah’s birth certificate may be requested from a PSA office while succeeding copies may be ordered online at www.psahelpline.ph

If you have questions about civil registration in the Philippines, please feel free to drop usa  line and we will do our best to find the answers for you.

Sources:

www.psa.gov.ph

www.gov.ph (The Family Code of the Philippines)

www.manilatimes.net

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05 - 15

Aling Nelia is a housewife and a mother of five children.  On her 57th birthday, her kids pooled their resources and surprised her with a round-trip ticket to Hong Kong as it has always been her ardent dream to see the place.

She began working on the required documents while waiting for her passport application appointment at the DFA.  However, when she got hold of her PSA birth certificate, she realized that her name is misspelled on the document.  Her real name, and the name that she has used all her life, is Cornelia Pineda Mangosing, while the name written in her birth certificate is Cornelio Pineda Mangosing.

At first glance, it looked like all Aling Nelia had to do was file a petition for correction of a clerical error on her birth certificate.  After all, it was just one letter – “o” in Cornelio should be changed to “a” to make it Cornelia.  However, when she sought assistance from the Local Civil Registry, she was informed that it is not as simple as it seemed.

What is the difference between correction of clerical error and change of name?

A lot, actually.

Correction of clerical error is covered by R.A. 9048 where an error in a birth certificate is corrected without the need to file a case in court, hire a lawyer, and attend hearings.  The corrections are applied by the LCR where the birth was registered.  RA 9048 may be applied if the error or errors are clearly typhographical in nature – harmless and innocuous.  An evidence of which is that the name, in its erroneous form, sounds ridiculous and tainted with dishonor.

On the other hand, a name that was supposedly misspelled but is still acceptable as a name, may not always be considered misspelled and therefore, may not be covered by the provisions of RA 9048.  Correcting such kinds of entries in a birth certificate follows a different process.

Cornelio vs. Cornelia

Aling Nelia’s name, as far as she is concerned, is misspelled.  Her name is Cornelia, not Cornelio.  Her argument is valid and she has all the documents to prove her claim.  However, the supposed misspelled name, Cornelio, is in itself, a name!  Changing the last letter to make it Cornelia would mean just that – changing the name – not merely correcting the spelling.

What should be done then?

Aling Nelia may resort to have the correction applied through a judicial proceeding.  She needs to file a verified petition in the Regional Trial Court of her birth place or where the LCR is located.  The rest of the procedures she needs to follow are outlined in Rule 108 of the Rules of Court in order to apply the necessary “correction”.  This may be better explained to her by a lawyer.

It may seem strange to have to go through a rather complicated process when all Aling Nelia wanted was to set her records straight and align the name on her birth certificate with the name that she had been using all her life.  At this point, she actually has two options: she could have her name changed through a court proceeding, or simply adopt “Cornelio” being the registered name and drop “Cornelia”.  The latter, of course, would be a ridiculous choice.

This is another reminder for all of us to always be careful when accomplishing public documents such as Certificates of Live Birth, Marriage Certificates, and Death Certificates.  An honest mistake may lead to a string of complications that may affect important transactions such as passport applications and benefit claims.

If you have questions regarding your birth certificate or think that there might be an error you need to rectify, proceed to the LCR office where your birth was registered.  You may also drop us a line and we will do our best to find the most accurate answers for you.

Source: www.psa.gov.ph

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05 - 03

“Noong ‘80s, nakakuha ako ng kopya ng NSO birth certificate ko.  Ngayon, nag request ulit ako, sabi sa akin ‘No Name’ na daw ako!  Bakit nawala yung record ko eh meron na nga dati?”

This is a common confusion among us Pinoys when we are told that we “have a problem with our birth certificate”.  When we hear the word “no”, we automatically think that we do not have a record with the PSA (formerly NSO).

We received the above question from a follower and took it upon ourselves to clarify the matter for everyone’s benefit.  It is important that we are all aware of the differences in our concerns with our birth certificates so we would also know the most effective and efficient solution we could apply.

Below is a summary of the most common birth certificate issues encountered by Pinoys and the prescribed solution for each:

BIRTH CERTIFICATE PROBLEM WHAT THIS MEANS SOLUTION
1. No Record of Birth Certificate The PSA does not have a copy or record of your birth certificate because:

A. Your parents failed to register your birth at the LCR. Or

B. The LCR where your birth was registered failed to submit your birth certificate to the PSA for certification.

C. You were born during or shortly after WW2 when most birth records were destroyed or misplaced.

For scenarios A and C: Submit an Affidavit for Delayed Registration of birth at the LCR of your birth place.  Read this article for the complete list of requirements for Delayed Registration.

For scenarios B: Advise the LCR to endorse your Certificate of Live Birth to the PSA for proper certification.

 

2. Misspelled First Name One or two letters were mistyped that may result to one of two things:

A. Correcting the mistyped letters will confirm your real name, or

b. Correcting the mistyped letters will give you a new name (e.g. Rachelle is the correct spelling but your name is typed as Rochelle).

For scenario A: File an Affidavit for Clerical Error at the LCR where your birth was registered.

For scenario B: The LCR will advise you if you still need to undergo court proceedings as well as other fees you may need to pay (as the case may be treated as “change of name” instead of “clerical error”.)

 

3. “Baby Boy” and “Baby Girl” in first name field The phrases “Baby Boy” and “Baby Girl” were typed in the first name field and is now considered the person’s first name.
  • If born before 1993, file a supplemental report at the LCR.
  • If born on 1993 onwards, file a petition for change of name under RA 9048 at the LCR of the child’s birthplace.
4. Misspelled Middle Name One or two letters of your middle name were mistyped.

The solution depends on the marital status of the petitioner

A. If the petitioner is SINGLE:

  • Bring a copy of your mother’s PSA birth certificate to the LCR of your birth place.
  • If mother is deceased, bring a copy of her PSA death certificate.

B. If the petitioner is MARRIED:

  • Include a copy of your PSA marriage certificate.

File your petition for correction at the LCR where your birth was registered.

5. No Name on Birth Certificate First name field in child’s birth certificate is blank. File a supplemental report at the LCR of the child’s birth place to supply the missing entry.
6. Wrong Gender Gender written in birth certificate is the opposite of the owner’s actual gender. This is considered a clerical error and may be rectified by filing a Petition for clerical or typographical error.
7. Birth Certificate is unreadable or blurry Entries in your birth certificate are hard to read because the texts are smudged or the prints have faded over time.
  • Check if the LCR has a clearer copy of your birth certificate.  If they do, you can request for that copy to be forwarded to PSA for certification.
  • If they don’t, you may request the LCR for a reconstruction of your birth certificate.
8. Problems with Entries in Birth Place field A. Only the name of the hospital is indicated in the birth place field.

B. There are no entries in the birth place field.

C. The birth place written in your birth certificate is incorrect

  • Bring 2 copies of the latest LCR and PSA copies of birth certificate to be corrected to the LCR.
  • Bring a certification from the hospital where you were born; certificate must bear the hospital’s address.
  • If the hospital is no longer in business, submit a certificate from the barangay to prove that the hospital used to be established in the area.
  • School records of petitioner
  • Voter’s registration records
  • Latest community tax certificate from place of residence or place or work.
9. Incorrect Birth Date A. Month, day, or year of birth is incorrect.
  • Corrections for Month and Date fall under RA 9048 and are considered clerical errors.  Owner may file a Petition for Correction at the LCR where birth was registered.
  • Incorrect birth year needs to undergo court proceedings.

Parents and guardians are strongly encouraged to double check all entries in a child’s birth certificate before submitting the document for registration.  Once this is made official by the LCR, you might have a difficult time applying corrections on entries overlooked prior to submission; some errors might even entail cost.

Keep following our page for more useful and informative articles about our PSA documents.

Reference: www.psa.gov

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04 - 26 (1)

I came across this interesting article on yet another case of a defective NSO-certified (now PSA) birth certificate.  The writer narrated how his grandson’s passport application was denied because the kid’s birth certificate lacked the proper entries in the birthplace field.  To get the matter straightened out, the birth certificate owner needs to seek the assistance of the Civil Registry of Manila, wait for four months, and pay (exorbitant) fees.  All because a government employee supposedly neglected double-checking the entries on the child’s birth certificate before having it officially registered and submitted to the PSA.

The taxpayer in me wants to simply believe that the LCR employee who handled the filing of the child’s birth certificate is entirely at fault.  After all, it is part of their job to go over the entries in the document before making it official.

The former government employee in me (not from the LCR though) wants to think otherwise.

The fact remains that the Certificate of Live Birth, which is handed to the parents or relatives of the newborn child, either by a hospital staff, the midwife, or right at the LCR office, is accomplished in the presence of the parents or relatives.  They are then given enough time to review the contents of the document (30 calendar days from the date of birth), and when satisfied, affix their signatures at the bottom of the page, before this is submitted to the LCR and to the PSA.

How then are LCR employees accountable for erroneous entries on birth certificates when all they actually do is receive and file the documents for authentication of the PSA?

The Certificate of Live Birth is an official, public document similar with other forms we fill out at banks, schools, and government offices.  We are expected to provide our most accurate and updated information when filling out these forms to ensure that our transactions are processed seamlessly.  We do not let other people accomplish these documents for us.

We should treat our children’s Certificates of Live Birth the same way, bearing in mind that all information we allow to be written on this document shall serve as our children’s lifelong records, to be used as references of their identification and family history.  Oversights and errors will definitely cause them unnecessary delays and expenses in the future.

We wish to thank the article’s writer for sharing his experience; may we all learn a thing or two from this incident and take it upon ourselves to ascertain that our family’s civil registry documents are filled out accurately.

Because at the end of the day, you have no one else to blame for errors on your children’s birth certificates, except yourself.

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04 - 19

After the wedding party is over and all the gifts have been unwrapped, the newly-wed couple settles back and realizes that life continues in a normal fashion.  Reality sets in sooner than they expect and before long, they find themselves dealing with the same matters they dealt with when they were single.

One such matter is their finances.

While most couples succeed at creating an effective financial plan for their future family, some are not as lucky and find themselves parting ways because of money matters.  One way of settling this sensitive issue between couples is by having a prenuptial agreement.

What are prenuptial agreements and is this something everybody should consider before getting married?  Why do couples frown at the idea of signing a prenuptial agreement only to regret not having one in the end?

We researched on this topic and gathered relevant information that can help soon-to-be husbands and wives appreciate the value of having a prenuptial agreement before taking the plunge.

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

A Prenuptial Agreement is a contract that covers the provisions on a couple’s division of property in the event of a separation (annulment, legal separation).  It sounds morbid (and oh so unromantic) but it will save you from the legal and emotional complications of separating properties in case the marriage does not work.

Why should a couple consider having a prenuptial agreement?

Contrary to popular belief, a Prenuptial Agreement is open not only to well-to-do couples and celebrities.  Even an average income earner must seriously consider signing one.  Below is a list of probable reasons to consider having a prenuptial agreement:

  1. One of you has children from a previous relationship.Your children from your previous marriage or relationship are heirs to your properties.  You can protect your children’s claims to their inheritance through a prenuptial agreement.
  2. One of you is a national of a country with a different set of rules governing property ownership.Since different countries have different laws regarding property ownership, a prenuptial agreement between you and your foreign national partner will simplify these matters.
  3. One of you is a co-owner of a business or an asset.Once you get married, your spouse automatically becomes a co-owner of a business you co-owned before the wedding.  If your business partners are not open to the idea of having an additional business partner, you may want to consider signing a prenuptial agreement.  This shall put your business partners’ qualms on shares to rest.
  4. One of you owns a considerable amount of assets.Your inheritance, savings from when you were single, or shares in a family business, are assets acquired prior to your marriage.  You have the liberty to choose to manage these assets on your own even after getting married.  To ensure your sole ownership, sign a prenuptial agreement.

In the absence of a prenuptial agreement, what governs the property relations between the spouses?

All properties acquired during the marriage shall be considered conjugal properties where husband and wife share in the property’s ownership.

For a prenuptial agreement to be legal and binding, the couple must both enter into it voluntarily.  Have the document notarized and recorded in the local civil registry.  This must be accomplished BEFORE your wedding date.

Source: http://news.abs-cbn.com/business/06/01/15/why-couples-should-consider-getting-prenup

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04 - 18

Filipinos like using nicknames.  We give our children unique sounding names such as ‘Jun-Jun’, ‘Ken-Ken’, and ‘Mac-Mac’.  Girls are named ‘Ging-Ging’, ‘Che-Che’, and sometimes, ‘Pot-Pot’.  Every family has a Tito Boy and a Tita Baby, a Kuya Boyet and an Ate Mayet, a Tito Tito or a Tita Tita.  Very seldom are we called by our real names.  When our parents call us by our complete names, we know we are in serious trouble.

While nicknames are fun and easy to remember, it has also caused problems for some.  Are there limitations to one’s use of his aliases?  When is it unlawful to use your nickname in public?  Did you know that there a lot of laws that touch on the use of nicknames and aliases?

Here is a list of Philippine laws that deal with an individual’s use of nicknames and aliases.  It pays to be properly informed because ignorance of the law excuses no one.  Don’t let your nickname get you in serious trouble.

What is a nickname or alias?

These are names we use publicly and habitually apart from our real names registered at birth or during baptism.  Any other name or names used by a person to distinguish himself other than his given name is called an alias (or aliases if the person has several).

Are nicknames or aliases allowed by law?

While Filipinos are not prohibited from using nicknames, there is a law that regulates the use of names other than one’s given name.  Commonwealth Act No. 142 (an Act to Regulate the Use of Aliases) was primarily intended to discourage the common practice among Chinese nationals who use different names and aliases in their business transactions.

Is the use of an alias in a business transaction or a public document automatically considered unlawful?

No.  Under the said Commonwealth Act, the use of a nickname or alias in a single instance without any indication that the user intends to be known by this name in addition to his real name does not fall within the prohibition.

The use of a nickname becomes illegal when it is meant to conceal or mislead, as detailed in the following laws involving false names and identities:

  1. The Anti-money Laundering Act of 2002 (Republic Act No. 9160, as amended), which requires banks and other covered institutions to establish and record the true identity of their clients based on official documents.
  2. The Revised Penal Code which penalizes the public use of a fictitious name for the purpose of concealing a crime or evading the execution of a judgment.
  3. The Civil Code of the Philippines which prohibits the use of different names and surnames, except for pen and stage names (usually observed among celebrities, authors, and the like).
  4. The Philippine Immigration Act of 1940 which penalizes any individual who shall evade the Immigration Laws by appearing under an assumed or fictitious name.
  5. The Tax Reform Act of 1997 which made it unlawful for any person to enter any false or fictitious name in a taxpayer’s books of accounts or records.
  6. Presidential Decree No. 1829 which penalizes any person who shall obstruct, impede, frustrate, or delay the apprehension of suspects by publicly using a fictitious name for the purpose of concealing a crime.
  7. Commonwealth Act 142 which penalizes any person who shall use any name different from the one with which he was registered at birth in the office of the local civil registry.

Nicknames and aliases is also one of the most common reasons why most Filipinos encounter problems with their birth certificates. By habitually using nicknames on public documents, they end up being listed under these aliases, contradicting the names written on their birth certificates.  This becomes a problem when the person applies for a passport, a license, or even when getting married.

Think twice before deciding to write your nickname on a public document.  Be careful you do not bring yourself unnecessary trouble by using a name you have been called since you were a kid.  Always choose to write your full name as written on your birth certificate.

Source: http://jlp-law.com/blog/when-the-use-of-aliases-violates-the-law/

Chips And Nibblers (1)

Closet Queen

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04 - 11

Joy gave birth to her eldest daughter before she turned 17 years old.  Since she was too young to care for her infant, her parents decided to claim Joy’s daughter as their own.  The baby was named Mia and Joy’s parents were listed as the baby’s parents in her birth certificate.

Ten years later, Joy married Mia’s biological father.  A few months into their marriage, both decided that it is time they took over the parental responsibilities for their one and only child.  This includes changing Mia’s last name to the last name of her biological father.  A lawyer friend explained that in order to achieve this, they need to adopt Mia.

Why do you need to adopt your own child?

Mia’s parents could have just easily filed for her Legitimation after they got married however, since Mia’s birth certificate shows her grandparents as her parents, they now need to adopt Mia so she can be legally recognized as their child.

What is the process of adopting your own child?

  1. The husband and wife must file a joint petition for adoption of Mia, with respect to Section 7 of R.A. 8552.  This must be filed at the Family Court of the province or city where the adopting parties reside.
  2. The petition should include the couple’s application for the change of surname of Mia.  Since Mia is already 16 years old at the time of adoption, her consent on the adoption is also needed.  She should be made aware that should she agree to the adoption, her last name will change to that of her biological father’s and custody will be transferred to her biological parents.

How will this kind of adoption be treated by the Family Court?

There are three kinds of adoption in the Philippines:

  1. Agency Adoptions – a licensed adoption agency finds and develops adoptive families for children under their care.
  2. Family or Relative Adoptions – where biological parents make a direct placement of the child to a relative.
  3. Private or Independent Adoptions – either a direct placement to a family known by the child’s biological parents or through the use of an intermediary or a go-between.

Mia’s adoption falls under Family or Relative Adoptions since her grandparents stood as her biological parents.  Take note that this could pose an issue in court as the grandparents might be accused of falsifying the child’s birth documents (listing themselves as Mia’s parents), but that is a separate matter that can be tackled in a different article later on.

What will be the effect of this kind of adoption?

  1. Mia’s legal ties with her grandparents (standing as her parents) will be severed.  They shall now assume the roles of grandparents to Mia and that is something they can deal with as a family.
  2. She will now be treated as a legitimate child of her adopters (who are actually her biological parents).
  3. Mia and her biological parents now have reciprocal rights and obligations arising from the relationship of parent and child, including but not limited to:
    • The right of the adopter to choose the name the child is to be known;
    • The right of the adopter and adoptee to be legal and compulsory heirs of each other.

Joy and her husband’s petition for adoption was granted by the Family Court.  It took a while before Mia got used to her new living arrangement and still opts to spend her weekends with her grandparents.  Mia’s inheritance, as stated in her grandparents’ will, remained intact in spite of the changes in her name and legitimacy.

So yes, you can adopt your own child.  It all depends on the events surrounding your circumstances and, up to a certain degree, your lawyer’s skill in convincing the Family Court that your petition merits approval.

Reference: http://www.gov.ph/2002/07/31/rule-on-adoption/

Chips And Nibblers (1)

Closet Queen

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