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VIII. ADOPTION 2.

One spouse seeks to adopt his own illegitimate child;


A. DOMESTIC ADOPTION LAW 3. Spouses are legally separated.
1. WHO CAN ADOPT
Q: Who may adopt? Q: Spouses Primo and Monica Lim, childless, were entrusted with the custody of two minor
A: children, the parents of whom were unknown. Eager of having children of their own, the
1. Filipino; spouses made it appear that they were the children’s parents by naming them Michelle P.
2. Alien; Lim and Michael Jude Lim.
3. Guardian with respect to his ward. Subsequently, Monina married Angel Olario after Primo’s death of her husband. She
decided to adopt the children by availing the amnesty given under R.A. 8552 to those
Q: What are the qualifications of a Filipino who may adopt? individuals who simulated the birth of a child. She filed separate petitions for the adoption
A: LPG‐FEC‐16 of Michelle, then 25 years old and Michael, 18. Both Michelle and Michael gave consent to
1. Must be of Legal age; the adoption.
2. In a Position to care for his children; The trial court dismissed the petition and ruled that Monina should have filed the petition
3. Good moral character; jointly with her new husband. Monina, in a Motion for Reconsideration argues that mere
4. Full civil capacity and legal rights; consent of her husband would suffice and that joint adoption is not needed, for the
5. Not been Convicted of any crime involving moral turpitude; adoptees are already emancipated.
6. Emotionally and psychologically capable of caring for children; Is the trial court correct in dismissing the petitions for adoption?
7. GR: At least 16 years older than adoptee A: Yes. Section 7 Article 3 of R.A. 8552 reads: Sec. 7 – Husband and wife shall jointly adopt,
XPN: It is not necessary that adopter be at least 16 years older: xxx.
a. Adopter is the biological parent of the adoptee, The use of the word “shall” in the above‐quoted provision means that joint adoption by the
b. Adopter is the spouse of adoptee’s parent. husband and the wife is mandatory. This is in consonance with the concept of joint parental
authority over the child which is the ideal situation. As the child to be adopted is elevated to
Q: What are the qualifications of an alien who may adopt under R.A. 8552? the level of a legitimate child, it but natural to require the spouses to adopt jointly. The rule
A: SD‐3 also ensures harmony between the spouses.
1. Possesses Same qualifications as those enumerated for Filipino adopters; The law is clear. There is no room for ambiguity. Monina, having remarried at the time the
2. His country has Diplomatic relations with the Philippines; petitions for adoption were filed, must jointly adopt. Since the petitions for adoption were
3. GR: Has been living in the Philippines for at least 3 continuous years prior to the filed only by Monina herself, without joining her husband, Olario, the trial court was correct
application for adoption and maintains such residence until adoption decree has been in denying the petitions for adoption on this ground. (In Re: Petition for Adoption of Michelle
entered. P. Lim, In Re: Petition for Adoption of Michael Jude P. Lim, Monina P. Lim, G.R. Nos.
XPN: 168992‐93, May 21, 2009)
a. He is a former Filipino who seeks to adopt a relative within the 4 th civil degree of Q: Is joint adoption still needed when the adoptees are already emancipated?
consanguinity or affinity, A: Yes. Even if emancipation terminates parental authority, the adoptee is still considered a
b. He is married to a Filipino and seeks to adopt jointly with his spouse a relative legitimate child of the adopter with all the rights of a legitimate child such as: (1) to bear the
within the 4th degree of consanguinity or affinity, surname of the father and the mother; (2) to receive support from their parents; and (3) to
c. He is married to a Filipino and seeks to adopt the legitimate or illegitimate child be entitled to the legitime and other successional rights. Conversely, the adoptive parents
of his filipino spouse. shall, with respect to the adopted child, enjoy all the benefits to which biological parents are
entitled such as support and successional rights.
Q: How may a guardian adopt his ward?
A: A guardian may only adopt his ward after termination of guardianship and clearance of his ADOPTEE.
financial accountabilities. Q: Who may be adopted?
Q: What is the rule when a person seeking to adopt has a spouse? A:
A: 1. Any person below 18 of age who has been administratively or judicially declared
GR: Such person must adopt with his spouse jointly. The general rule is that husband and available for adoption;
wife shall jointly adopt. 2. Legitimate child of one spouse by the other spouse;
XPN: 3. Illegitimate child by a qualified adopter to improve the status of said child to that of
1. One spouse seeks to adopt the legitimate child of the other; legitimacy;

Initially Prepared by: Cacatian


4. Person of legal age, if prior to the adoption, said person has been consistently 2. Sexual assault or violence;
considered and treated by adopters as their child since minority; 3. Abandonment and failure to comply with parental obligations;
5. Child whose adoption has been previously rescinded; 4. Repeated physical or verbal maltreatment by the adopter.
6. Child whose biological parents have died provided no proceedings have been initiated
within 6 months from time of death. Note: Adopter cannot rescind but may disinherit the adoptee.
Q: What are the grounds by which an adopter may disinherit adoptee?
Q: What is the definition of “child”? A:
A: A child is any person below 18 years old. 1. Groundless accusation against the testator of a crime punishable by 6 years or more
Q: What is the definition of “child legally free for adoption”? imprisonment;
A: A child voluntarily or involuntarily committed to the DSWD, freed of his biological parents, 2. Found guilty of attempt against the life of the testator, his/her spouse, descendant or
guardians, adopters in case of rescission. ascendant;
Q: Whose written consent is necessary for adoption? 3. Causes the testator to make changes or changes a testator’s will through violence,
A: intimidation, fraud or undue influence;
1. Adoptee, if 10 years of age and over; 4. Maltreatment of the testator by word or deed;
2. Biological parents of the child, if known or the legal guardian, or the proper government 5. Conviction of a crime which carries a penalty of civil interdiction;
instrumentality which has legal custody of the child; 6. Adultery or concubinage with the testator’s wife;
3. Legitimate children of the adopter, if 10 years old or over; 7. Refusal without justifiable cause to support the parent or ascendant;
4. Illegitimate children of the adopter, if 10 years old or over and living with him; 8. Leads a dishonorable or disgraceful life.
5. Spouse of the adopted, if married;
6. Spouse of the adopter, if married. Q: What are the effects of adoption?
A:
Q: Bernadette filed a petition for adoption of the three minor children of her late brother, 1. GR: Severance of all legal ties between the biological parents and the adoptee and the
Ian. She alleged that when her brother died, the children were left to the care of their same shall then be vested on the adopters
paternal grandmother, Anna, who went to Italy. This grandmother died however, and so XPN: In cases where the biological parent is the spouse of the adopter;
she filed the petition for adoption. The minors gave their written consent to the adoption Deemed a legitimate child of the adopter;
and so did all of her own grown‐up children. The trial court granted the decree of adoption Acquires reciprocal rights and obligations arising from parent‐child relationship;
even though the written consent of the biological mother of the children was not adduced Right to use surname of adopter;
by Bernadette. Was the trial court correct in granting the decree of adoption? In legal and intestate succession, the adopters and the adoptee shall have reciprocal rights of
succession without distinction from legitimate filiation. However, if the adoptee and
his/her biological parents had left a will, the law on testamentary succession shall
A: No. The rule is adoption statutes must be liberally construed in order to give spirit to their govern.
humane and salutary purpose which is to uplift the lives of unfortunate, needy or orphaned
children. However, the discretion to approve adoption proceedings on the part of the courts Q: State the effects of rescission of the adoption in the Domestic Adoption Act of 1998 (RA
should not to be anchored solely on those principles, but with due regard likewise to the 8552).
natural rights of the parents over the child. The written consent of the biological parents is A:
indispensable for the validity of the decree of adoption. Indeed, the natural right of a parent 1. If adoptee is still a minor or is incapacitated – Restoration of:
to his child requires that his consent must be obtained before his parental rights and duties a. Parental authority of the adoptee’s biological parents, if known’ or
may be terminated and vested in the adoptive parents. In this case, since the minors' b. Legal custody of the DSWD;
paternal grandmother had taken custody of them, her consent should have been secured 2. Reciprocal rights and obligations of the adopters and adoptee to each other shall be
instead in view of the absence of the biological mother. This is so under Sec. 9 (b) of R.A. extinguished;
8552, otherwise known as the Domestic Adoption Act of 1998. Diwata failed in this respect, 3. Court shall order the civil registrar to cancel the amended certificate of birth of the
thus necessitating the dismissal of her petition for adoption. (Landingin v. Republic,G.R. No. adoptee and restore his/her original birth certificate;
164948, June 27, 2006) 4. Succession rights shall revert to its status prior to adoption, but only as of the date of
Q: On what grounds may an adoptee seek the rescission of the adoption? judgment of judicial rescission;
A: 5. Vested rights acquired prior to judicial rescission shall be respected.
1. Attempt on the life of the adoptee;

Initially Prepared by: Cacatian


Despite several relationships with different women, Andrew remained unmarried. His first 3. Has the capacity to act or assume all rights and responsibilities of parental authority;
relationship with Brenda produced a daughter, Amy, now 30 years old. His second, with 4. Not been convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude;
Carla, produced two sons: Jon and Ryan. His third, with Donna, bore him two daughters: 5. Eligible to adopt under his national law;
6. In a position to provide for proper care and support and give necessary moral values;
Vina and Wilma. His fourth, while Elena, bore him no children although Elena has a
7. Agrees to uphold the basic rights of the child mandated by the UN convention of rights
daughter Jane, from a previous relationship. His last, with Fe, produced no biological of Child and the Philippine Laws;
children but they informally adopted without court proceedings, Sandy, now 13 years old, 8. Comes from a country with which the Philippines has diplomatic relations and adoption
whom they consider as their own. Sandy, now 13 years old, whom they consider as their is allowed under his national law;
own. Sandy was orphaned as a baby and was entrusted to them by the midwife who 9. Possesses all the qualifications and none of the disqualifications under the law or other
attended to Sandy’s birth. All the children, including Amy, now live with Andrew in his applicable Philippine laws.
house.
Q: Sometime in 1990, Sarah, born a Filipino but by then a naturalized American citizen, and
Is there any legal obstacle to the legal adoption of Amy by Andrew? To the legal adoption her American husband Sonny Cruz, filed a petition in the Regional Trial Court of Makati, for
the adoption of the minor child of her sister, a Filipina, can the petition be granted?
of Sandy by Andrew and Elena?
A: No, there is no legal obstacle to the legal adoption of Amy by Andrew. While a person of A: It depends. If Sonny and Sarah have been residing in the Philippines for at least 3 years
prior to the effectivity of R.A. 8552, the petition may be granted. Otherwise, the petition
age may not be adopted, Amy falls within two exceptions: (1) she is an illegitimate child and
she is being adopted by her illegitimate father to improve her status; and (2) even on the cannot be granted because the American husband is not qualified to adopt.
While the petition for adoption was filed in 1990, it was considered refiled upon the
assumption that she is not an illegitimate child of Andrew, she may still be adopted, although
effectivity of R.A. 8552. This is the law applicable, the petition being still pending with the
of legal age, because she has been consistently considered and treated by the adopter as his
own child since minority. In fact, she has been living with him until now. lower court. Under the Act, Sarah and Sonny must adopt jointly because they do not fall in
any of the exceptions where one of them may adopt alone. When husband and wife must
There is a legal obstacle to the adoption of Sandy by Andrew and Elena. Andrew and Elena
cannot adopt jointly because they are not married. adopt jointly, the Supreme Court has held in a line of cases that both of them must be
qualified to adopt. While Sarah, an alien, is qualified to adopt, for being a former Filipino
In his old age, can Andrew be legally entitled to claim support from Amy, Jon, Ryan, Vina,
Wilma and Sandy assuming that all of them have the means to support him? citizen who seeks to adopt a relative within the 4th degree of consanguinity or affinity, Sonny,
an alien, is not qualified to adopt because he is neither a former Filipino citizen nor married
A: Andrew can claim support from them all, except from Sandy, who is not his child,
legitimate, illegitimate or adopted. to a Filipino. One of them not being qualified to adopt, their petition has to be denied.
However, if they have been residents of the Philippines 3 years prior to the effectivity of the
Can Amy, Jon, Ryan, Vina, Wilma and Sandy legally claim support from each other?
A: Amy, Jon, Ryan, Vina and Wilma can ask support from each other because they are Act and continues to reside here until the decree of adoption is entered, they are qualified to
adopt the nephew of Sarah under Sec 7(b) thereof, and the petition may be granted. (2000
half‐blood brothers and sisters, and Vina and Wilma are full‐blood sisters (Art. 195 [5], Family
Bar Question)
Code), but not Sandy who is not related to any of them.
Can Jon and Jane legally marry? ADOPTEE
Q: Who may be adopted?
A: Jon and Jane can legally marry because they are not related to each other. Jane is not a
daughter of Andrew. (2008 Bar Question) A: Only a legally free child may be adopted provided the following are submitted:
1. Child study;
B. INTERCOUNTRY ADOPTION ACT OF 1995 .
(RA 8043) . 2. Birth certificate/ foundling certificate;
3. Deed of Voluntary Commitment/Decree of Abandonment/Death Certificate of parents;
ADOPTER
Q: Who may adopt? 4. Medical evaluation or history;
5. Psychological evaluation;
A:
6. Recent photo;
1. Any alien;
2. Filipino citizen, both permanently residing abroad.
Q: What is the definition of “child”?
Q: What are the qualifications needed for a Filipino or alien to adopt? A: A child is any person below 15 years old.
Q: What is a “legally‐free child”?
A:
1. At least 27 years old and 16 years older than the child to be adopted at the time of the A: A child who has been voluntarily or involuntarily committed to the DSWD of the
Philippines, in accordance with the Child Youth and Welfare Code
application unless adopter is the parent by nature of the child;
2. If married, his spouse must jointly file for adoption;
Initially Prepared by: Cacatian
Note: No child shall be matched to a foreign adoptive family unless it is satisfactorily shown that
the child cannot be adopted in the Philippines
GR: There shall be no physical transfer of a voluntarily committed child earlier than 6
months from the date of execution of Deed of Voluntary Commitment.
XPN:
1. Adoption by relative;
2. Child with special medical condition.

INTER‐COUNTRY ADOPTION BOARD


Q: What is the function of Inter‐Country Adoption Board?
A: The Inter Country Adoption Board acts as the central authority in matters relating to
inter‐country adoption. The Board shall ensure that all the possibilities for adoption of the
child under the Family Code have been exhausted and that the inter‐country adoption is in
the best interest of the child
Q: What is trial custody?
A: It is the pre‐adoptive relationship which ranges 6 months from the time of the placement.
It starts from the actual transfer of the child to the applicant who, as actual custodian, shall
exercise substitute parental authority over the person of the child
Note:
1. If unsatisfactory – the relationship shall be suspended by the board and the foreign adoption
agency shall arrange for the child’s voluntary care.
2. If satisfactory – the Board shall submit the written consent of the adoption to the foreign
adoption agency within 30 days after the request of the latter’s request.

Initially Prepared by: Cacatian