I have two children from a previous relationship. Although their father recognized them, we don’t have any settlement yet regarding child support. I already asked him but he refused. I cannot support my children’s needs as my income is not enough. Can I compel the father of my children to give support?
As defined, support is everything indispensable for sustenance, dwelling, clothing, medical attendance, education and transportation, in keeping with the financial capacity of the family (Article 194, Family Code of the Philippines).
Under the Family Code of the Philippines, parents and their children whether their relationship is legitimate or otherwise are obliged to give support to each other. Thus, your children, having been acknowledged by their father as his, have the right to compel the latter to provide support to them (Article 195, Ibid.).
Also, under Article 195 of the law, the obligation to give support shall be demandable from the time the person who has a right to receive the same needs it for maintenance, but it shall not be paid except from the date of judicial or extra-judicial demand.
Clearly, to compel the father of your children to give support, it is necessary that demand must be made first directing him to give support. One way of doing this is by sending him a letter, reminding him of his obligation to your children and demanding support from him. If he fails to comply with his obligation, you may resort to filing a case in court so that the court may force him to give support to your children. His failure to provide support to your children may also be a ground for the filing of a criminal complaint against him for violation of Republic Act 7610 or the Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act, or RA 9262 or the Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004.
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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