Parental consent required in issuance of marriage license

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Persida Acosta

Dear PAO,
My 19-year-old girlfriend, Joan, and I would like to marry this year. When we applied before the local civil registrar for a marriage license, however,  the official required Joan’s parents to give their consent. I know that Joan cannot obtain such parental consent because her mother (surviving parent) is objecting to our relationship. She does not want me to be her son-in-law. Instead, she wants a certain businessman to marry her daughter. What will be the effect on our marriage if Joan cannot obtain the parental consent of her mother?  
Brix

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Dear Brix,
Parental consent is a requirement for the issuance of marriage license if one or both of the contracting parties is/are between the ages of eighteen (18) and twenty-one (21). This finds support under Article 14 of the Family Code of the Philippines that specifically states:

“In case either or both of the contracting parties, not having been emancipated by a previous marriage, are between the ages of eighteen and twenty-one, they shall in addition to the requirements of the preceding articles, exhibit to the local civil registrar, the consent to their marriage of their father, mother, surviving parent or guardian, or persons having legal charge of them, in the order mentioned. Such consent shall be manifested in writing by the interested party, who personally appears before the proper local civil registrar, or in the form of an affidavit made in the presence of two witnesses and attested before any official authorized by law to administer oaths. The personal manifestation shall be recorded in both applications for marriage license, and the affidavit, if one is executed instead, shall attached to said applications.”

Correlative thereto, Article 16 of the code also provides: “In the cases where parental consent or parental advice is needed, the party or parties concerned shall, in addition to the requirements of the preceding articles, attach a certificate issued by the priest, imam or minister authorized to solemnize marriage under Article 7 of the code or a marriage counsellor duly accredited by the proper government agency to the effect that the contracting parties have undergone marriage counselling. Failure to attach said certificate of marriage counselling shall suspend the issuance of the marriage license for a period of three months from the completion of the publication of the application. Issuance of marriage license within the prohibited period shall subject the issuing officer to administrative sanctions but shall not affect the validity of the marriage.”

In your case, the marriage license will still be issued despite the refusal of Joan’s mother to give her consent. But please remember that lack of parental consent could be a ground for annulment of marriage under Article 45 (1) of the same code, which can be filed by the parents, guardian or person having substituted parental authority over the party any time before Joan reaches 21 or Joan herself before attaining the age of 21.

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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