• Amount of parental support to child not fixed by law

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    Persida Acosta

    Persida Acosta

    Dear PAO,
    I am an OFW currently working overseas. My wife and I have decided to end our relationship. We are not yet legally separated because I was advised that whoever files an annulment case will be the one to shoulder the expenses. Is this true?

    I would like to ask also if I can only give half of my salary. I am receiving P40,000 per month. My wife and I don’t have an agreement as to how much I will be sending my children as support.
    Romy

    Dear Romy,
    It is unfortunate that your relationship with your wife ended in a separation. Be that as it may, even if you are physically separated from each other, your marriage is still subsisting. If anyone of you would like to file a case to have you marriage annulled or declared null and void, as the case may be, that spouse will be the one to defray for the expenses needed in litigating the case. Should the other spouse participate in the case, he/she too may incur expenses for engaging the services of a lawyer, among others.

    Insofar as the amount of support you are obliged to give to your children is concerned, the law does not fix the amount thereof. What the law provides is that support shall be given based on the capacity of the giver and the needs of the recipient. This is clearly provided by Article 201 of the Family Code of the Philippines, to wit:

    “Art. 201. The amount of support, in the cases referred to in Articles 195 and 196, shall be in proportion to the resources or means of the giver and to the necessities of the recipient.”

    Thus, in the absence of an agreement or for failure of you and your wife to agree on the amount of the support you ought to give your children, it is the court that has the authority to adjudicate the appropriate amount of support that you are going to give to your children, based on the above provision of the law.

    Again, we find it necessary to mention that this opinion is solely based on the facts you have narrated and our appreciation of the same. The opinion may vary when the facts are changed or elaborated.

    We hope that we were able to enlighten you on the matter.

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