• Marriage contracted by minors void from the start

    Persida Acosta

    Persida Acosta

    Dear PAO,
    Will age really not matter in marriage? My classmate told me that it is easy to get married these days whatever age the parties are. I just want to know if this is true. Please advice.

    Dear Helga,
    Marriage is a contract of permanent union between a man and a woman and it is entered into in accordance with law for the establishment of conjugal and family life (Article 1, Family Code of the Philippines).

    As it is a contract, all the essential and formal requisites must be present in order to consider such union valid and legally binding, to wit: Legal capacity of the contracting parties who must be a male and a female; consent freely given in the presence of the solemnizing officer; authority of the solemnizing officer; a valid marriage license except in the cases provided for in Chapter 2 of this Title; and a marriage ceremony which takes place with the appearance of the contracting parties before the solemnizing officer and their personal declaration that they take each other as husband and wife in the presence of not less than two witnesses of legal age (Articles 2 and 3, Id).

    The first requisite, which pertains to legal capacity, speaks of the age of the contracting parties. As provided under the law, only contracting parties who are eighteen years or upwards and not under any of the impediments mentioned in Articles 37 and 38 may contract marriage (Article 5, Id).

    Hence, it is not correct to say that age does not matter in marriage. It does matter. In fact, if a marriage is contracted by any party who is below eighteen years of age, even with the consent of his or her parents or guardians, such marriage will be regarded as void from the beginning (Article 35 (1), Id).

    We hope that we were able to answer your queries. Please be reminded that this advice is based solely on the facts you have narrated and our appreciation of the same. Our opinion may vary when other facts are changed or elaborated.

    Editor’s note: Dear PAO is a daily column of the Public Attorney’s Office. Questions for Chief Acosta may be sent to dearpao@manilatimes.net


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    1 Comment

    1. arnulfo tibe sacan on

      First requisite: my wife was born march 27, 1964. I was born feb 27, 1959. We had our church wedding Dec 27, 1979.She was 15 yrs old that time. Is this the case that is said null and void from the beginning? i believe it is but wanted to hear from legal expert.thanks.