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Relevant articles from Salt and Light blog (on relationships, marriage and family)

Lessons in life and love from Miriam Quiambao

Relationship tips for Shalani (and other single men and women)

Getting married? Take a look at what "covenant marriage" is

How to save your marriage alone

Boundaries in Marriage

Oldies but Goodies: Ten Commandments for Wives and Husbands

Why Marriages Fail: He said, She said ...

Communication: Key to your Marriage

"Sad Movies Always Make Me Cry"

Surviving Marital Infidelity

Marital infidelity: causes, consequences and conclusions

Hope and help for the battered woman (4): Emotional abuse / psychological violence

Hope and help for the battered woman (5): Biblical response to abuse; evangelical Christians are best husbands – University of Virginia study

“Are you ready? Let’s get it on!” Marriage: The Ultimate Fighting Championship

All about women: Move over, Jang Geum!

Do wives really want husbands to share their feelings and thoughts with them?

Emotional word pictures as a communication tool for increasing intimacy between husbands and wives

Hate Eight? Eight kinds of husbands and wives

Love Potion No. 9

Men are terrible mind readers ...

Rights and obligations between husband and wife from the Biblical standpoint and that of the Family Code

Ruffa, Ylmaz, TV Patrol, divorce and remarriage by Filipinos

The only exercise some people do is jumping to conclusions: Mind reading and negative interpretations

Transformers: Why do persistent suitors become passive husbands?

Update on the Mary Winkler case: A word of hope and encouragement for pastors' wives and female church workers

Why do men think the things they think, say the things they say, and do the things they do?

Relevant articles from Legal Updates blog

Financial support for abandoned woman and family

Rights and obligations of husbands and wives

Adultery, concubinage and psychological violence

Divorce obtained abroad by a Filipino citizen against alien spouse recognized in the Philippines

Divorce and remarriage

The Amy Perez case: Psychological incapacity in annulment of marriages

Mediation not applicable to domestic violence cases

Custody battles over children: what determines fitness of a parent over another?

Can a mother be deprived of custody of her child?

Can you legally force your spouse to live with and to love you?

When a man is married to or living in with several women successively or simultaneously, who has the right to inherit from him?

Free PDF newsletters on legal issues available for download

Malcampo-Sin vs. Sin
G.R. No. 137590.
 
March 26, 2001

The Family Code emphasizes the permanent nature of marriage, hailing it as the foundation of the family. It is this inviolability which is central to our traditional and religious concepts of morality and provides the very bedrock on which our society finds stability. Marriage is immutable and when both spouses give their consent to enter it, their consent becomes irrevocable, unchanged even by their independent wills.

However, this inviolability depends on whether the marriage exists and is valid.  If it is void ab initio, the “permanence” of the union becomes irrelevant, and the Court can step in to declare it so.  Article 36 of the Family Code is the justification. Where it applies and is duly proven, a judicial declaration can free the parties from the rights, obligations, burdens and consequences stemming from their marriage.

A declaration of nullity of marriage under Article 36 of the Family Code requires the application of procedural and substantive guidelines.  While compliance with these requirements mostly devolves upon petitioner, the State is likewise mandated to actively intervene in the procedure. Should there be non-compliance by the State with its statutory duty, there is a need to remand the case to the lower court for proper trial.

Tenebro vs. CA
G.R. No. 150758.
February 18, 2004

We are called on to decide the novel issue concerning the effect of the judicial declaration of the nullity of a second or subsequent marriage, on the ground of psychological incapacity, on an individual’s criminal liability for bigamy. We hold that the subsequent judicial declaration of nullity of marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity does not retroact to the date of the celebration of the marriage insofar as the Philippines’ penal laws are concerned. As such, an individual who contracts a second or subsequent marriage during the subsistence of a valid marriage is criminally liable for bigamy, notwithstanding the subsequent declaration that the second marriage is void ab initio on the ground of psychological incapacity.

Petitioner in this case, Veronico Tenebro, contracted marriage with private complainant Leticia Ancajas on April 10, 1990. The two were wed by Judge Alfredo B. Perez, Jr. of the City Trial Court of Lapu-lapu City. Tenebro and Ancajas lived together continuously and without interruption until the latter part of 1991, when Tenebro informed Ancajas that he had been previously married to a certain Hilda Villareyes on November 10, 1986. Tenebro showed Ancajas a photocopy of a marriage contract between him and Villareyes. Invoking this previous marriage, petitioner thereafter left the conjugal dwelling which he shared with Ancajas, stating that he was going to cohabit with Villareyes.

On January 25, 1993, petitioner contracted yet another marriage, this one with a certain Nilda Villegas, before Judge German Lee, Jr. of the Regional Trial Court of Cebu City, Branch 15. When Ancajas learned of this third marriage, she verified from Villareyes whether the latter was indeed married to petitioner. In a handwritten letter, Villareyes confirmed that petitioner, Veronico Tenebro, was indeed her husband.

The second tier of petitioner’s defense hinges on the effects of the subsequent judicial declaration of the nullity of the second marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity.

Petitioner argues that this subsequent judicial declaration retroacts to the date of the celebration of the marriage to Ancajas. As such, he argues that, since his marriage to Ancajas was subsequently declared void ab initio, the crime of bigamy was not committed.

This argument is not impressed with merit. Petitioner makes much of the judicial declaration of the nullity of the second marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity, invoking Article 36 of the Family Code. What petitioner fails to realize is that a declaration of the nullity of the second marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity is of absolutely no moment insofar as the State’s penal laws are concerned.

As a second or subsequent marriage contracted during the subsistence of petitioner’s valid marriage to Villareyes, petitioner’s marriage to Ancajas would be null and void ab initio completely regardless of petitioner’s psychological capacity or incapacity. Since a marriage contracted during the subsistence of a valid marriage is automatically void, the nullity of this second marriage is not per se an argument for the avoidance of criminal liability for bigamy. Pertinently, Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code criminalizes “any person who shall contract a second or subsequent marriage before the former marriage has been legally dissolved, or before the absent spouse has been declared presumptively dead by means of a judgment rendered in the proper proceedings”. A plain reading of the law, therefore, would indicate that the provision penalizes the mere act of contracting a second or a subsequent marriage during the subsistence of a valid marriage.

Thus, as soon as the second marriage to Ancajas was celebrated on April 10, 1990, during the subsistence of the valid first marriage, the crime of bigamy had already been consummated. To our mind, there is no cogent reason for distinguishing between a subsequent marriage that is null and void purely because it is a second or subsequent marriage, and a subsequent marriage that is null and void on the ground of psychological incapacity, at least insofar as criminal liability for bigamy is concerned. The State’s penal laws protecting the institution of marriage are in recognition of the sacrosanct character of this special contract between spouses, and punish an individual’s deliberate disregard of the permanent character of the special bond between spouses, which petitioner has undoubtedly done.

Moreover, the declaration of the nullity of the second marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity is not an indicator that petitioner’s marriage to Ancajas lacks the essential requisites for validity. The requisites for the validity of a marriage are classified by the Family Code into essential (legal capacity of the contracting parties and their consent freely given in the presence of the solemnizing officer) and formal (authority of the solemnizing officer, marriage license, and marriage ceremony wherein the parties personally declare their agreement to marry before the solemnizing officer in the presence of at least two witnesses). Under Article 5 of the Family Code, any male or female of the age of eighteen years or upwards not under any of the impediments mentioned in Articles 37 and 38 may contract marriage.

In this case, all the essential and formal requisites for the validity of marriage were satisfied by petitioner and Ancajas. Both were over eighteen years of age, and they voluntarily contracted the second marriage with the required license before Judge Alfredo B. Perez, Jr. of the City Trial Court of Lapu-lapu City, in the presence of at least two witnesses.

Although the judicial declaration of the nullity of a marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity retroacts to the date of the celebration of the marriage insofar as the vinculum between the spouses is concerned, it is significant to note that said marriage is not without legal effects. Among these effects is that children conceived or born before the judgment of absolute nullity of the marriage shall be considered legitimate. There is therefore a recognition written into the law itself that such a marriage, although void ab initio, may still produce legal consequences. Among these legal consequences is incurring criminal liability for bigamy. To hold otherwise would render the State’s penal laws on bigamy completely nugatory, and allow individuals to deliberately ensure that each marital contract be flawed in some manner, and to thus escape the consequences of contracting multiple marriages, while beguiling throngs of hapless women with the promise of futurity and commitment.

As a final point, we note that based on the evidence on record, petitioner contracted marriage a third time, while his marriages to Villareyes and Ancajas were both still subsisting. Although this is irrelevant in the determination of the accused’s guilt for purposes of this particular case, the act of the accused displays a deliberate disregard for the sanctity of marriage, and the State does not look kindly on such activities.Marriage is a special contract, the key characteristic of which is its permanence. When an individual manifests a deliberate pattern of flouting the foundation of the State’s basic social institution, the State’s criminal laws on bigamy step in.

Abunado vs. People
G.R. No. 159218.

March 30, 2004

The subsequent judicial declaration of the nullity of the first marriage was immaterial because prior to the declaration of nullity, the crime had already been consummated. Moreover, petitioner’s assertion would only delay the prosecution of bigamy cases considering that an accused could simply file a petition to declare his previous marriage void and invoke the pendency of that action as a prejudicial question in the criminal case. We cannot allow that.

Ancheta vs. Ancheta
G.R. No. 145370.

March 4, 2004

The action in Rule 47 of the Rules of Court does not involve the merits of the final order of the trial court. However, we cannot but express alarm at what transpired in the court a quo as shown by the records. The records show that for the petitioner’s failure to file an answer to the complaint, the trial court granted the motion of the respondent herein to declare her in default.  The public prosecutor condoned the acts of the trial court when he interposed no objection to the motion of the respondent.  The trial court forthwith received the evidence of the respondent ex-parte and rendered judgment against the petitioner without a whimper of protest from the public prosecutor. The actuations of the trial court and the public prosecutor are in defiance of Article 48 of the Family Code, which reads:

Article 48. In all cases of annulment or declaration of absolute nullity of marriage, the Court shall order the prosecuting attorney or fiscal assigned to it to appear on behalf of the State to take steps to prevent collusion between the parties and to take care that evidence is not fabricated or suppressed.

The task of protecting marriage as an inviolable social institution requires vigilant and zealous participation and not mere pro-forma compliance. The protection of marriage as a sacred institution requires not just the defense of a true and genuine union but the exposure of an invalid one as well.

A grant of annulment of marriage or legal separation by default is fraught with the danger of collusion. Hence, in all cases for annulment, declaration of nullity of marriage and legal separation, the prosecuting attorney or fiscal is ordered to appear on behalf of the State for the purpose of preventing any collusion between the parties and to take care that their evidence is not fabricated or suppressed.  If the defendant-spouse fails to answer the complaint, the court cannot declare him or her in default but instead, should order the prosecuting attorney to determine if collusion exists between the parties.  The prosecuting attorney or fiscal may oppose the application for legal separation or annulment through the presentation of his own evidence, if in his opinion, the proof adduced is dubious and fabricated. 

Our Constitution is committed to the policy of strengthening the family as a basic social institution.  Our family law is based on the policy that marriage is not a mere contract, but a social institution in which the State is vitally interested. The State can find no stronger anchor than on good, solid and happy families. The break-up of families weakens our social and moral fabric; hence, their preservation is not the concern of the family members alone.

Free PDF newsletters on legal issues available for download

How to become a Christian

Who is God? What is man? Who is Christ? Repent and believe

Gospel

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Executive Order No. 209                 
The Family Code of the Philippines

(For a discussion of relevant issues, please surf to the blogs Legal Updates and Salt and Light. You can also download free PDF newsletters on various legal issues.)

Chapter 1. Requisites of Marriage

Article 1. Marriage is a special contract of permanent union between a man and a woman entered into in accordance with law for the establishment of conjugal and family life. It is the foundation of the family and an inviolable social institution whose nature, consequences, and incidents are governed by law and not subject to stipulation, except that marriage settlements may fix the property relations during the marriage within the limits provided by this Code. (52a)

Art. 2. No marriage shall be valid, unless these essential requisites are present:

(1) Legal capacity of the contracting parties who must be a male and a female; and

(2) Consent freely given in the presence of the solemnizing officer. (53a)

Art. 3. The formal requisites of marriage are:

(1) Authority of the solemnizing officer;

(2) A valid marriage license except in the cases provided for in Chapter 2 of this Title; and

(3) A marriage ceremony which takes place with the appearance of the contracting parties before the solemnizing officer and their personal declaration that they take each other as husband and wife in the presence of not less than two witnesses of legal age. (53a, 55a)

Art. 4. The absence of any of the essential or formal requisites shall render the marriage void ab initio, except as stated in Article 35 (2).

A defect in any of the essential requisites shall not affect the validity of the marriage but the party or parties responsible for the irregularity shall be civilly, criminally and administratively liable. (n)

Art. 5. Any male or female of the age of eighteen years or upwards not under any of the impediments mentioned in Articles 37 and 38, may contract marriage. (54a)

Art. 6. No prescribed form or religious rite for the solemnization of the marriage is required. It shall be necessary, however, for the contracting parties to appear personally before the solemnizing officer and declare in the presence of not less than two witnesses of legal age that they take each other as husband and wife. This declaration shall be contained in the marriage certificate which shall be signed by the contracting parties and their witnesses and attested by the solemnizing officer.

In case of a marriage in articulo mortis, when the party at the point of death is unable to sign the marriage certificate, it shall be sufficient for one of the witnesses to the marriage to write the name of said party, which fact shall be attested by the solemnizing officer. (55a)

Art. 7. Marriage may be solemnized by:

(1) Any incumbent member of the judiciary within the court's jurisdiction;

(2) Any priest, rabbi, imam, or minister of any church or religious sect duly authorized by his church or religious sect and registered with the civil registrar general, acting within the limits of the written authority granted by his church or religious sect and provided that at least one of the contracting parties belongs to the solemnizing officer's church or religious sect;

(3) Any ship captain or airplane chief only in the case mentioned in Article 31;

(4) Any military commander of a unit to which a chaplain is assigned, in the absence of the latter, during a military operation, likewise only in the cases mentioned in Article 32;

(5) Any consul-general, consul or vice-consul in the case provided in Article 10. (56a)

Note: The Local Government Code of 1991 restored to the mayors their authority to solemnize marriages.

Art. 8. The marriage shall be solemnized publicly in the chambers of the judge or in open court, in the church, chapel or temple, or in the office the consul-general, consul or vice-consul, as the case may be, and not elsewhere, except in cases of marriages contracted on the point of death or in remote places in accordance with Article 29 of this Code, or where both of the parties request the solemnizing officer in writing in which case the marriage may be solemnized at a house or place designated by them in a sworn statement to that effect. (57a)

Art. 9. A marriage license shall be issued by the local civil registrar of the city or municipality where either contracting party habitually resides, except in marriages where no license is required in accordance with Chapter 2 of this Title. (58a)

Art. 10. Marriages between Filipino citizens abroad may be solemnized by a consul-general, consul or vice-consul of the Republic of the Philippines. The issuance of the marriage license and the duties of the local civil registrar and of the solemnizing officer with regard to the celebration of marriage shall be performed by said consular official. (75a)

Art. 11. Where a marriage license is required, each of the contracting parties shall file separately a sworn application for such license with the proper local civil registrar which shall specify the following:

(1) Full name of the contracting party;

(2) Place of birth;

(3) Age and date of birth;

(4) Civil status;

(5) If previously married, how, when and where the previous marriage was dissolved or annulled;

(6) Present residence and citizenship;

(7) Degree of relationship of the contracting parties;

(8) Full name, residence and citizenship of the father;

(9) Full name, residence and citizenship of the mother; and

(10) Full name, residence and citizenship of the guardian or person having charge, in case the contracting party has neither father nor mother and is under the age of twenty-one years.

The applicants, their parents or guardians shall not be required to exhibit their residence certificates in any formality in connection with the securing of the marriage license. (59a)

Art. 12. The local civil registrar, upon receiving such application, shall require the presentation of the original birth certificates or, in default thereof, the baptismal certificates of the contracting parties or copies of such documents duly attested by the persons having custody of the originals. These certificates or certified copies of the documents by this Article need not be sworn to and shall be exempt from the documentary stamp tax. The signature and official title of the person issuing the certificate shall be sufficient proof of its authenticity.

If either of the contracting parties is unable to produce his birth or baptismal certificate or a certified copy of either because of the destruction or loss of the original or if it is shown by an affidavit of such party or of any other person that such birth or baptismal certificate has not yet been received though the same has been required of the person having custody thereof at least fifteen days prior to the date of the application, such party may furnish in lieu thereof his current residence certificate or an instrument drawn up and sworn to before the local civil registrar concerned or any public official authorized to administer oaths. Such instrument shall contain the sworn declaration of two witnesses of lawful age, setting forth the full name, residence and citizenship of such contracting party and of his or her parents, if known, and the place and date of birth of such party. The nearest of kin of the contracting parties shall be preferred as witnesses, or, in their default, persons of good reputation in the province or the locality.

The presentation of birth or baptismal certificate shall not be required if the parents of the contracting parties appear personally before the local civil registrar concerned and swear to the correctness of the lawful age of said parties, as stated in the application, or when the local civil registrar shall, by merely looking at the applicants upon their personally appearing before him, be convinced that either or both of them have the required age. (60a)

Art. 13. In case either of the contracting parties has been previously married, the applicant shall be required to furnish, instead of the birth or baptismal certificate required in the last preceding article, the death certificate of the deceased spouse or the judicial decree of the absolute divorce, or the judicial decree of annulment or declaration of nullity of his or her previous marriage.

In case the death certificate cannot be secured, the party shall make an affidavit setting forth this circumstance and his or her actual civil status and the name and date of death of the deceased spouse. (61a)

Art. 14. In case either or both of the contracting parties, not having been emancipated by a previous marriage, are between the ages of eighteen and twenty-one, they shall, in addition to the requirements of the preceding articles, exhibit to the local civil registrar, the consent to their marriage of their father, mother, surviving parent or guardian, or persons having legal charge of them, in the order mentioned. Such consent shall be manifested in writing by the interested party, who personally appears before the proper local civil registrar, or in the form of an affidavit made in the presence of two witnesses and attested before any official authorized by law to administer oaths. The personal manifestation shall be recorded in both applications for marriage license, and the affidavit, if one is executed instead, shall be attached to said applications. (61a)

Art. 15. Any contracting party between the age of twenty-one and twenty-five shall be obliged to ask their parents or guardian for advice upon the intended marriage. If they do not obtain such advice, or if it be unfavorable, the marriage license shall not be issued till after three months following the completion of the publication of the application therefor. A sworn statement by the contracting parties to the effect that such advice has been sought, together with the written advice given, if any, shall be attached to the application for marriage license. Should the parents or guardian refuse to give any advice, this fact shall be stated in the sworn statement. (62a)

Art. 16. In the cases where parental consent or parental advice is needed, the party or parties concerned shall, in addition to the requirements of the preceding articles, attach a certificate issued by a priest, imam or minister authorized to solemnize marriage under Article 7 of this Code or a marriage counselor duly accredited by the proper government agency to the effect that the contracting parties have undergone marriage counseling. Failure to attach said certificates of marriage counseling shall suspend the issuance of the marriage license for a period of three months from the completion of the publication of the application. Issuance of the marriage license within the prohibited period shall subject the issuing officer to administrative sanctions but shall not affect the validity of the marriage.

Should only one of the contracting parties need parental consent or parental advice, the other party must be present at the counseling referred to in the preceding paragraph. (n)

Art. 17. The local civil registrar shall prepare a notice which shall contain the full names and residences of the applicants for a marriage license and other data given in the applications. The notice shall be posted for ten consecutive days on a bulletin board outside the office of the local civil registrar located in a conspicuous place within the building and accessible to the general public. This notice shall request all persons having knowledge of any impediment to the marriage to advise the local civil registrar thereof. The marriage license shall be issued after the completion of the period of publication. (63a)

Art. 18. In case of any impediment known to the local civil registrar or brought to his attention, he shall note down the particulars thereof and his findings thereon in the application for marriage license, but shall nonetheless issue said license after the completion of the period of publication, unless ordered otherwise by a competent court at his own instance or that of any interest party. No filing fee shall be charged for the petition nor a corresponding bond required for the issuances of the order. (64a)

Art. 19. The local civil registrar shall require the payment of the fees prescribed by law or regulations before the issuance of the marriage license. No other sum shall be collected in the nature of a fee or tax of any kind for the issuance of said license. It shall, however, be issued free of charge to indigent parties, that is those who have no visible means of income or whose income is insufficient for their subsistence a fact established by their affidavit, or by their oath before the local civil registrar. (65a)

Art. 20. The license shall be valid in any part of the Philippines for a period of one hundred twenty days from the date of issue, and shall be deemed automatically canceled at the expiration of the said period if the contracting parties have not made use of it. The expiry date shall be stamped in bold characters on the face of every license issued. (65a)

Art. 21. When either or both of the contracting parties are citizens of a foreign country, it shall be necessary for them before a marriage license can be obtained, to submit a certificate of legal capacity to contract marriage, issued by their respective diplomatic or consular officials.

Stateless persons or refugees from other countries shall, in lieu of the certificate of legal capacity herein required, submit an affidavit stating the circumstances showing such capacity to contract marriage. (66a)

Art. 22. The marriage certificate, in which the parties shall declare that they take each other as husband and wife, shall also state:

(1) The full name, sex and age of each contracting party;

(2) Their citizenship, religion and habitual residence;

(3) The date and precise time of the celebration of the marriage;

(4) That the proper marriage license has been issued according to law, except in marriage provided for in Chapter 2 of this Title;

(5) That either or both of the contracting parties have secured the parental consent in appropriate cases;

(6) That either or both of the contracting parties have complied with the legal requirement regarding parental advice in appropriate cases; and

(7) That the parties have entered into marriage settlement, if any, attaching a copy thereof. (67a)

Art. 23. It shall be the duty of the person solemnizing the marriage to furnish either of the contracting parties the original of the marriage certificate referred to in Article 6 and to send the duplicate and triplicate copies of the certificate not later than fifteen days after the marriage, to the local civil registrar of the place where the marriage was solemnized. Proper receipts shall be issued by the local civil registrar to the solemnizing officer transmitting copies of the marriage certificate. The solemnizing officer shall retain in his file the quadruplicate copy of the marriage certificate, the original of the marriage license and, in proper cases, the affidavit of the contracting party regarding the solemnization of the marriage in place other than those mentioned in Article 8. (68a)

Art. 24. It shall be the duty of the local civil registrar to prepare the documents required by this Title, and to administer oaths to all interested parties without any charge in both cases. The documents and affidavits filed in connection with applications for marriage licenses shall be exempt from documentary stamp tax. (n)

Art. 25. The local civil registrar concerned shall enter all applications for marriage licenses filed with him in a registry book strictly in the order in which the same are received. He shall record in said book the names of the applicants, the date on which the marriage license was issued, and such other data as may be necessary. (n)

Art. 26. All marriages solemnized outside the Philippines, in accordance with the laws in force in the country where they were solemnized, and valid there as such, shall also be valid in this country, except those prohibited under Articles 35 (1), (4), (5) and (6), 36, 37 and 38. (17a)

Where a marriage between a Filipino citizen and a foreigner is validly celebrated and a divorce is thereafter validly obtained abroad by the alien spouse capacitating him or her to remarry, the Filipino spouse shall have capacity to remarry under Philippine law. (As amended by Executive Order 227)

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Chapter 2. Marriages Exempted from License Requirement

Art. 27. In case either or both of the contracting parties are at the point of death, the marriage may be solemnized without necessity of a marriage license and shall remain valid even if the ailing party subsequently survives. (72a)

Art. 28. If the residence of either party is so located that there is no means of transportation to enable such party to appear personally before the local civil registrar, the marriage may be solemnized without necessity of a marriage license. (72a)

Art. 29. In the cases provided for in the two preceding articles, the solemnizing officer shall state in an affidavit executed before the local civil registrar or any other person legally authorized to administer oaths that the marriage was performed in articulo mortis or that the residence of either party, specifying the barrio or barangay, is so located that there is no means of transportation to enable such party to appear personally before the local civil registrar and that the officer took the necessary steps to ascertain the ages and relationship of the contracting parties and the absence of legal impediment to the marriage. (72a)

Art. 30. The original of the affidavit required in the last preceding article, together with the legible copy of the marriage contract, shall be sent by the person solemnizing the marriage to the local civil registrar of the municipality where it was performed within the period of thirty days after the performance of the marriage. (75a)

Art. 31. A marriage in articulo mortis between passengers or crew members may also be solemnized by a ship captain or by an airplane pilot not only while the ship is at sea or the plane is in flight, but also during stopovers at ports of call. (74a)

Art. 32. A military commander of a unit, who is a commissioned officer, shall likewise have authority to solemnize marriages in articulo mortis between persons within the zone of military operation, whether members of the armed forces or civilians. (74a)

Art. 33. Marriages among Muslims or among members of the ethnic cultural communities may be performed validly without the necessity of marriage license, provided they are solemnized in accordance with their customs, rites or practices. (78a)

Art. 34. No license shall be necessary for the marriage of a man and a woman who have lived together as husband and wife for at least five years and without any legal impediment to marry each other. The contracting parties shall state the foregoing facts in an affidavit before any person authorized by law to administer oaths. The solemnizing officer shall also state under oath that he ascertained the qualifications of the contracting parties and found no legal impediment to the marriage. (76a)

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Chapter 3. Void and Voidable Marriages

Art. 35. The following marriages shall be void from the beginning:

(1) Those contracted by any party below eighteen years of age even with the consent of parents or guardians;

(2) Those solemnized by any person not legally authorized to perform marriages unless such marriages were contracted with either or both parties believing in good faith that the solemnizing officer had the legal authority to do so;

(3) Those solemnized without license, except those covered the preceding Chapter;

(4) Those bigamous or polygamous marriages not falling under Article 41;

(5) Those contracted through mistake of one contracting party as to the identity of the other; and

(6) Those subsequent marriages that are void under Article 53.

Art. 36. A marriage contracted by any party who, at the time of the celebration, was psychologically incapacitated to comply with the essential marital obligations of marriage, shall likewise be void even if such incapacity becomes manifest only after its solemnization. (As amended by Executive Order 227)

Art. 37. Marriages between the following are incestuous and void from the beginning, whether the relationship between the parties be legitimate or illegitimate:

(1) Between ascendants and descendants of any degree; and

(2) Between brothers and sisters, whether of the full or half blood. (81a)

Art. 38. The following marriages shall be void from the beginning for reasons of public policy:

(1) Between collateral blood relatives whether legitimate or illegitimate, up to the fourth civil degree;

(2) Between step-parents and step-children;

(3) Between parents-in-law and children-in-law;

(4) Between the adopting parent and the adopted child;

(5) Between the surviving spouse of the adopting parent and the adopted child;

(6) Between the surviving spouse of the adopted child and the adopter;

(7) Between an adopted child and a legitimate child of the adopter;

(8) Between adopted children of the same adopter; and

(9) Between parties where one, with the intention to marry the other, killed that other person's spouse, or his or her own spouse. (82)

Art. 39. The action or defense for the declaration of absolute nullity of a marriage shall not prescribe.

(As amended by Executive Order 227 and Republic Act No. 8533; The phrase "However, in case of marriage celebrated before the effectivity of this Code and falling under Article 36, such action or defense shall prescribe in ten years after this Code shall taken effect" has been deleted by Republic Act No. 8533 [Approved February 23, 1998]).

Art. 40. The absolute nullity of a previous marriage may be invoked for purposes of remarriage on the basis solely of a final judgment declaring such previous marriage void. (n)

Art. 41. A marriage contracted by any person during subsistence of a previous marriage shall be null and void, unless before the celebration of the subsequent marriage, the prior spouse had been absent for four consecutive years and the spouse present has a well-founded belief that the absent spouse was already dead. In case of disappearance where there is danger of death under the circumstances set forth in the provisions of Article 391 of the Civil Code, an absence of only two years shall be sufficient.

For the purpose of contracting the subsequent marriage under the preceding paragraph the spouse present must institute a summary proceeding as provided in this Code for the declaration of presumptive death of the absentee, without prejudice to the effect of reappearance of the absent spouse. (83a)

Art. 42. The subsequent marriage referred to in the preceding Article shall be automatically terminated by the recording of the affidavit of reappearance of the absent spouse, unless there is a judgment annulling the previous marriage or declaring it void ab initio.

A sworn statement of the fact and circumstances of reappearance shall be recorded in the civil registry of the residence of the parties to the subsequent marriage at the instance of any interested person, with due notice to the spouses of the subsequent marriage and without prejudice to the fact of reappearance being judicially determined in case such fact is disputed. (n)

Art. 43. The termination of the subsequent marriage referred to in the preceding Article shall produce the following effects:

(1) The children of the subsequent marriage conceived prior to its termination shall be considered legitimate;

(2) The absolute community of property or the conjugal partnership, as the case may be, shall be dissolved and liquidated, but if either spouse contracted said marriage in bad faith, his or her share of the net profits of the community property or conjugal partnership property shall be forfeited in favor of the common children or, if there are none, the children of the guilty spouse by a previous marriage or in default of children, the innocent spouse;

(3) Donations by reason of marriage shall remain valid, except that if the donee contracted the marriage in bad faith, such donations made to said donee are revoked by operation of law;

(4) The innocent spouse may revoke the designation of the other spouse who acted in bad faith as beneficiary in any insurance policy, even if such designation be stipulated as irrevocable; and

(5) The spouse who contracted the subsequent marriage in bad faith shall be disqualified to inherit from the innocent spouse by testate and intestate succession. (n)

Art. 44. If both spouses of the subsequent marriage acted in bad faith, said marriage shall be void ab initio and all donations by reason of marriage and testamentary dispositions made by one in favor of the other are revoked by operation of law. (n)

Art. 45. A marriage may be annulled for any of the following causes, existing at the time of the marriage:

(1) That the party in whose behalf it is sought to have the marriage annulled was eighteen years of age or over but below twenty-one, and the marriage was solemnized without the consent of the parents, guardian or person having substitute parental authority over the party, in that order, unless after attaining the age of twenty-one, such party freely cohabited with the other and both lived together as husband and wife;

(2) That either party was of unsound mind, unless such party after coming to reason, freely cohabited with the other as husband and wife;

(3) That the consent of either party was obtained by fraud, unless such party afterwards, with full knowledge of the facts constituting the fraud, freely cohabited with the other as husband and wife;

(4) That the consent of either party was obtained by force, intimidation or undue influence, unless the same having disappeared or ceased, such party thereafter freely cohabited with the other as husband and wife;

(5) That either party was physically incapable of consummating the marriage with the other, and such incapacity continues and appears to be incurable; or

(6) That either party was afflicted with a sexually-transmissible disease found to be serious and appears to be incurable. (85a)

Art. 46. Any of the following circumstances shall constitute fraud referred to in Number 3 of the preceding Article:

(1) Non-disclosure of a previous conviction by final judgment of the other party of a crime involving moral turpitude;

(2) Concealment by the wife of the fact that at the time of the marriage, she was pregnant by a man other than her husband;

(3) Concealment of sexually transmissible disease, regardless of its nature, existing at the time of the marriage; or

(4) Concealment of drug addiction, habitual alcoholism, or homosexuality or lesbianism existing at the time of the marriage.

No other misrepresentation or deceit as to character, health, rank, fortune or chastity shall constitute such fraud as will give grounds for action for the annulment of marriage. (86a)

Art. 47. The action for annulment of marriage must be filed by the following persons and within the periods indicated herein:

(1) For causes mentioned in number 1 of Article 45 by the party whose parent or guardian did not give his or her consent, within five years after attaining the age of twenty-one, or by the parent or guardian or person having legal charge of the minor, at any time before such party has reached the age of twenty-one;

(2) For causes mentioned in number 2 of Article 45, by the same spouse, who had no knowledge of the other's insanity; or by any relative or guardian or person having legal charge of the insane, at any time before the death of either party, or by the insane spouse during a lucid interval or after regaining sanity;

(3) For causes mentioned in number 3 of Article 45, by the injured party, within five years after the discovery of the fraud;

(4) For causes mentioned in number 4 of Article 45, by the injured party, within five years from the time the force, intimidation or undue influence disappeared or ceased;

(5) For causes mentioned in number 5 and 6 of Article 45, by the injured party, within five years after the marriage. (87a)

Art. 48. In all cases of annulment or declaration of absolute nullity of marriage, the Court shall order the prosecuting attorney or fiscal assigned to it to appear on behalf of the State to take steps to prevent collusion between the parties and to take care that evidence is not fabricated or suppressed.

In the cases referred to in the preceding paragraph, no judgment shall be based upon a stipulation of facts or confession of judgment. (88a)

Art. 49. During the pendency of the action and in the absence of adequate provisions in a written agreement between the spouses, the Court shall provide for the support of the spouses and the custody and support of their common children. The Court shall give paramount consideration to the moral and material welfare of said children and their choice of the parent with whom they wish to remain as provided for in Title IX. It shall also provide for appropriate visitation rights of the other parent. (n)

Art. 50. The effects provided for by paragraphs (2), (3), (4) and (5) of Article 43 and by Article 44 shall also apply in the proper cases to marriages which are declared ab initio or annulled by final judgment under Articles 40 and 45.

The final judgment in such cases shall provide for the liquidation, partition and distribution of the properties of the spouses, the custody and support of the common children, and the delivery of their presumptive legitimes, unless such matters had been adjudicated in previous judicial proceedings.

All creditors of the spouses as well as of the absolute community or the conjugal partnership shall be notified of the proceedings for liquidation.

In the partition, the conjugal dwelling and the lot on which it is situated, shall be adjudicated in accordance with the provisions of Articles 102 and 129.

Art. 51. In said partition, the value of the presumptive legitimes of all common children, computed as of the date of the final judgment of the trial court, shall be delivered in cash, property or sound securities, unless the parties, by mutual agreement judicially approved, had already provided for such matters.

The children or their guardian or the trustee of their property may ask for the enforcement of the judgment.

The delivery of the presumptive legitimes herein prescribed shall in no way prejudice the ultimate successional rights of the children accruing upon the death of either or both of the parents; but the value of the properties already received under the decree of annulment or absolute nullity shall be considered as advances on their legitime. (n)

Art. 52. The judgment of annulment or of absolute nullity of the marriage, the partition and distribution of the properties of the spouses and the delivery of the children's presumptive legitimes shall be recorded in the appropriate civil registry and registries of property; otherwise, the same shall not affect third persons. (n)

Art. 53. Either of the former spouses may marry again after complying with the requirements of the immediately preceding Article; otherwise, the subsequent marriage shall be null and void.

Art. 54. Children conceived or born before the judgment of annulment or absolute nullity of the marriage under Article 36 has become final and executory shall be considered legitimate. Children conceived or born of the subsequent marriage under Article 53 shall likewise be legitimate.

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