Family Code of the Philippines: An Overview

On July 6, 1987, President Corazon C. Aquino issued Executive Order No. 209, otherwise known as the Family Code of the Philippines. The Family Code became effective on August 3, 1988 and repealed certain provisions of the Civil Code.

The Family Code is the basic law on persons and family relations and governs, among others, the following:

(1) marriage;

(2) legal separation;

(3) property relations between husband and wife;

(4) paternity and filiation;

(5) support; and

(6) parental authority.

Among the changes brought by the Family to the Civil Code are the following:

(1) psychological incapacity became a ground for the annulment of marriage;

(2) the default property relationship between spouses was changed from conjugal partnership of gains to absolute community;

(3) a Filipino who is divorced from a non-Filipino spouse is allowed to remarry under Philippine law.

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