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Separation of husband and wife in the Philippines: The law of bigamy


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softail

Two kinds of separation exist in the Philippines; one is a separation in fact, where the married couple lives apart but has not filed papers or orders against one another.

The second kind of separation is ‘legal separation’. This is a process by which the courts deem you legally separated; in essence, you seek a declaration of that legal separation.

Under the Family Code of the Philippines Article #63 – “The decree of legal separation shall have the following effects: (1) the spouses shall be entitled to live separately from each other, but the marriage bonds shall not be severed.”

The overall problem with this code is that many, even foreigners, commit various crimes under the said law – from cheating or living with another person and various other crimes under the family code.

One infraction is “bigamy,” the act of marrying again (or multiple times).

Bigamy under the Revised Penal Code, under Article #349 states:

“Article #349 – “Bigamy” – The penalty of prison shall be imposed upon any person who shall contract a second or subsequent marriage before the former marriage has been legally dissolved, or the absent spouse has been declared presumptively dead by means of a judgment rendered in the proper proceedings [mostly by court decree].”

In the Philippines the code defines two types of bigamy. The first is simply that you re-marry even though your first marriage has not been dissolved. The second is those who contract to marry without having a definitive judgment that the former spouse is truly dead.

It is easy for a foreigner in the Philippines to actually be married multiple times. “The Right To Marry” paper issued by the American Embassy in the Philippines is only a sworn statement and often no legal proof of divorce is noted.

Even though local and regional courts need the document, the ones that are often noted are not inspected for legality. In saying that, a good forged copy of those said documents can often be used and nobody knows the difference.

This in fact leaves loop-holes for those wanting to circumvent the system, but anyone can easily be put in the spotlight if bigamy is found. In several instances it is noted that the spouse, or new wife is married and illegal papers are produced to marry again, putting the noted new husband in the hot seat if the original Filipino husband learns of the proceedings.

A distant or long separated spouse retains many aspects of law in the Philippines, those laws can easily haunt the new boyfriend or girlfriend of that said separated marriage.

Simply living with or cohabiting with someone, far before anything related to bigamy comes about, can simply have any foreigner or unknowing party in serious trouble.

Many laws exist in the Philippines on the long standing “Family Code” and those that think otherwise are often sitting in jail or deported under circumstances that even they didn’t see coming.

https://philippineslifestyle.com/separation-of-husband-and-wife-in-the-philippines-the-law-of-bigamy/

 

I understand that this is a rather old article but thought it was worth reviewing.  Particularly for nubies

 

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5 minutes ago, softail said:

Two kinds of separation exist in the Philippines; one is a separation in fact, where the married couple lives apart but has not filed papers or orders against one another.

The second kind of separation is ‘legal separation’. This is a process by which the courts deem you legally separated; in essence, you seek a declaration of that legal separation.

Under the Family Code of the Philippines Article #63 – “The decree of legal separation shall have the following effects: (1) the spouses shall be entitled to live separately from each other, but the marriage bonds shall not be severed.”

The overall problem with this code is that many, even foreigners, commit various crimes under the said law – from cheating or living with another person and various other crimes under the family code.

One infraction is “bigamy,” the act of marrying again (or multiple times).

Bigamy under the Revised Penal Code, under Article #349 states:

“Article #349 – “Bigamy” – The penalty of prison shall be imposed upon any person who shall contract a second or subsequent marriage before the former marriage has been legally dissolved, or the absent spouse has been declared presumptively dead by means of a judgment rendered in the proper proceedings [mostly by court decree].”

In the Philippines the code defines two types of bigamy. The first is simply that you re-marry even though your first marriage has not been dissolved. The second is those who contract to marry without having a definitive judgment that the former spouse is truly dead.

It is easy for a foreigner in the Philippines to actually be married multiple times. “The Right To Marry” paper issued by the American Embassy in the Philippines is only a sworn statement and often no legal proof of divorce is noted.

Even though local and regional courts need the document, the ones that are often noted are not inspected for legality. In saying that, a good forged copy of those said documents can often be used and nobody knows the difference.

This in fact leaves loop-holes for those wanting to circumvent the system, but anyone can easily be put in the spotlight if bigamy is found. In several instances it is noted that the spouse, or new wife is married and illegal papers are produced to marry again, putting the noted new husband in the hot seat if the original Filipino husband learns of the proceedings.

A distant or long separated spouse retains many aspects of law in the Philippines, those laws can easily haunt the new boyfriend or girlfriend of that said separated marriage.

Simply living with or cohabiting with someone, far before anything related to bigamy comes about, can simply have any foreigner or unknowing party in serious trouble.

Many laws exist in the Philippines on the long standing “Family Code” and those that think otherwise are often sitting in jail or deported under circumstances that even they didn’t see coming.

https://philippineslifestyle.com/separation-of-husband-and-wife-in-the-philippines-the-law-of-bigamy/

 

I understand that this is a rather old article but thought it was worth reviewing.  Particularly for nubies

 

Seemingly the moral of the story is, if a foreigner intends to marry, simply get married in your own country.  Widows in the Philippines are free to marry again.

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SkyMan
3 hours ago, Jack Rat said:

Seemingly the moral of the story is, if a foreigner intends to marry, simply get married in your own country.  Widows in the Philippines are free to marry again.

I'm not seeing the connection here.  Widows in the RP are free to remarry regardless of where they were married.

4 hours ago, softail said:

Under the Family Code of the Philippines Article #63 – “The decree of legal separation shall have the following effects: (1) the spouses shall be entitled to live separately from each other, but the marriage bonds shall not be severed.”

Is there a (2) because it did say effect's'.  And unless married couples are prohibited from living separately, I don't see the value in the paper.

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SkyMan
5 hours ago, softail said:

It is easy for a foreigner in the Philippines to actually be married multiple times. “The Right To Marry” paper issued by the American Embassy in the Philippines is only a sworn statement and often no legal proof of divorce is noted.

Right, you're just swearing that you are legally eligible marry.  Any of us could go get one now by swearing we'd never been married before.  $50 and done.  But it isn't much better for other countries even if that country has a registry of marriage.  Someone could get a LCM from their country but it would only mean they weren't married in that country.  They could have a dozen wives around the world.  So in the end, it's just a piece of paper that proves nothing.

And as for the statement above saying 'It is easy for a foreigner in the Philippines to actually be married multiple times.'  I doubt it would be that hard for a Filipino if they wanted to.

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"It is easy for a foreigner in the Philippines to actually be married multiple times"

I wonder if this means multiple times to other people not in the Philippines. When I got married in the Philippines, the civil registrar's office made me run my name through the CENOMAR database to see if I had been married before in the Philippines. I read a story recently where the foreigner brought the Filipina to the States and they got married but she left because she claimed abuse. She moved back to the Philippines but they had already registered the marriage in the Philippines too. After 10-15 years, she meets another American and wants to get married but can't contact her husband for the divorce paper. She asks the local barangay what to do and they say to post an ad in the local newspaper for a month to see if he responds. He never does so they declare him dead. She is now free to marry the new guy. 

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What I don't understand is if they have "crimes against chastity" laws (Revised Penal Code->Book 2->Section 11->crimes against chastity), why stop at bigamy and adultery? Why is fornication not against the law? Over 50% of babies born in the Philippines are born out of wedlock. 

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