Annulment in the Philippines: Questions and Answers (Part 2)

One of the more popular posts in this Forum is Annulment, Divorce and Legal Separation in the Philippines: Questions and Answers. It’s time we collate other common issues relating to this topic. When we speak of the “annulment process”, we’re using it in a general sense to include both a petition for annulment and a petition for declaration of nullity (the difference between the two was already discussed in Part I).

Annulment, Divorce and Legal Separation Q&A 2

Should I seek an annulment?

This is a personal decision that should not be taken lightly. While divorce is not allowed in the Philippines, the fact that the law provides for annulment means that there are meritorious instances that would justify the annulment of marriage.

What specifically is the role of the Solicitor General in the process of annulment? Is it true that the SolGen is often the source of delay?

The Solicitor General is authorized to intervene and take part in the proceedings for annulment and declaration of nullity of marriages before the RTC and on appeal to higher courts.The Solicitor General is the principal law officer and legal defender of the land. His intervention in the proceedings ensures that the interest of the State is represented and protected in proceedings for annulment and declaration of nullity of marriages by preventing collusion between the parties, or the fabrication or suppression of evidence. This is the express pronouncement of the Supreme Court. The SolGen may or may not appeal an annulment decision, and such decision is within its authority. In other words, it’s not true, and unfair to say, that the SolGen is the cause of delay.

How long does an annulment process usually take?

The entire process could take less than a year or, if you’re unfortunate, years. There are so many factors that could delay the proceedings. You and your lawyer must be vigilant in making sure that the proceedings go smoothly.

How much does it usually cost?

This is a difficult question, primarily because there are so many variations. If you have absolutely limited resources, you could file the petition as a pauper litigant (for filing fees) and seek free legal aid (discussed below). If you engage the services of a private lawyer, the entire process may cost you at least a Hundred Thousand Pesos (PhP100,000).

I have a limited amount of money. Where can I seek legal aid?

There are certain institutions where you could seek free legal assistance. Start with the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO), although they may or may not accept your case, depending on their load (they’re usually overloaded with cases). The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) and certain law schools, provide free legal aid. Remember, however, that your request may be denied because there are other important cases handled by these institutions.

How can I verify if my lawyer really filed the petition in court or if a decision was really issued? Can I obtain a copy of the decision?

You may ask your lawyer to provide you with a copy of all documents (motions, pleadings, orders, decisions, etc.) relating to your case. The photocopying cost, of course, will be charged to you. In any case, you could always request to photocopy the record with the court where the petition was filed.

If there’s already a decision annulling my marriage, but the decision is appealed by the Office of the Solicitor General, is it ok to remarry?

No. Unless and until the decision in your favor becomes final and executory (no motion for reconsideration or appeal was filed) and the other requisites have been complied with, you can’t remarry.

If you can’t find the answers here, please refer to Part I, Part III, Part IV, Part V, or other related posts. You can check the Related Posts at the bottom of each post. You can also use the Search function (also in the right sidebar).

Atty.Fred

180 thoughts on “Annulment in the Philippines: Questions and Answers (Part 2)

  1. Atty. FredAtty. Fred Post author

    Pamela,

    We’re planning to write an article related to your post, so please drop by from time to time. Thanks.

    Edward,

    We have come across so many cases where the parties were really not serious in getting into the marriage…but got stuck because the act of getting married has serioous legal repercussions that can’t be made to go away with a snap of a finger. Getting in is cheaper…getting out is definitely not. There are several posts to the effect that even if a marriage is null and void from the very beginning, a petition MUST be filed in court to declare its nullity. Good luck.

    Optimistgirl,

    Some of your questions are actually addressed by this post…so kindly scroll up. As to the rest of your questions, matters on fees are properly discussed privately with the lawyer that you’re going to retain, so we couldn’t discuss that here. Raise these matters during your initial discussion with your lawyer. Good luck and God bless.

    Reply
  2. Avatarrastaman69

    Hi Atty. Fred,
    First off, thank the heaven I found this site! I’ve been looking for someone who can help us with our situation. I recently found out that my fiancee has underwent more of a “doctored” civil wedding when she got pregnant 7 years ago. I still want to walk her down the isle but I’d like to clean the slate first, so to speak. Here are the facts: 1. Her ex-husband was only 17 when they were married but the copy of their contract was anti-dated showing him as 18(married a month before his 18th bday, anti-dated a month after his 18th birthday) in the contract and the place was different as well as the residing fiscal. 2. Only weeks after the marriage, she decided to go back to her parents because she found out she cant raise her son that well around her inlaws and the irresponsibility of the husband. 3. They have had no communication since then until recently when their son got a first honor medal at school. He now has a life of his own (ex-husband) and is also wanting to have everything cleared. How should we go about this matter without further inflicting any damage to any parties? Is a petition for nullity an option for us? We don’t know yet if the marriage was registered in NSO but I’ve already requested a copy of CENOMAR from them. If she’s cleared, is it lawful proof enough that she can marry me? Please Advise. Thank you so much in advance.

    Reply
  3. Avatarlexie

    Hi Atty,

    I have been separated for 4 years already. My husband is a drug addict and everything so everyone is telling me to file for anullment.

    But the thing is, I am not mentally and emotionally capacitated to fight for an anullment in court. Not to mention the fact that I know it would benefit him more, you know, the remarrying thing.

    Well, here’s my problem: I want to revert to using my maiden name. I want to drop his surname and use my maiden name in all my transactions. Is it legal? What should I do in order to have a reversion of name in my public documents (PRC, Philhealth, SSS, etc) I am also planning on applying for a passport. Can I apply under my maiden name while declaring that I am a married woman?

    Please help. Thank you.

    Reply
  4. Avatarfelinoespeso

    sir,
    i was 18 yo when i got married with consent from my parents. my wife and i lived for almost 2 years together. but we ended up parting ways because of our differences and fights. we got married 2001 and parted mid 2002. we have a daughter, i go to her mother to see her from time to time. but my wife i rarely see and we dont know whats going on with our lives. i communicate with her rarely, once or twice a year just to ask about our daughter. is there any ground so i can file an annulment? and how much would i need roughly? because i want to remarry when the time comes.
    thanks mon

    Reply
  5. Avatardandan

    Hi atty fred. I am currentlly working abroad. My wife and I got separated 3 years ago. We got married on 2003 in her native province of batangas. After almost 2 years, she admitted that she wanted separation because of another man. My question is, can I file an annulment even if im here in dubai without the need to go in the philippines for hearing purposes?

    Reply
  6. AvatarChill

    Assalam Alaikum!

    Good Day Atty!I was married then we separated although not legally. I then converted to Islam and was advised to remarry my wife and put in the contract that we would be performing Talaq after 1 month. Talaq is the divorce proceedings in Islam. Would this be upheld under Muslim Personal Laws? Please Advise. Thanks!

    Reply
  7. AvatarJirah

    Hi I need an advise. I got married when i was 18 years old because i got pregnant. And after 2 years of marriage we’ve seperated for the reason of THIRD PARTY. were 3 years seperated and he didn’t give any support in our son. As far as i know his living now with his new girlfriend and they have daughter already. What can i do? is there any ground so i can file an annulment? Please let me know… thank you very much.. God bless poh!

    Reply
  8. Avatarleinahtan

    good day,

    i am unhappily married for 10 years now and it started 1998, i was mentally depressed going into marriage after the child was born, that i only married her FOR THE SAKE of the child.
    is it possible for me to file an annulment that all through the years passed by we both know we are extremely living for the child alone and that theres no harmony and love inside our marriage, and that we have an awful time adjusting with one another.
    please help, many thanks

    Reply
  9. Avatarnoeleen_4

    hello attorney.i am married to a japanese national in the philippines three years ago.we filed a divorce due to his attitude.he is a womanizer.is there a possibility for him to remarry a filipina in spite he was married once in the philippines?

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.