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E the wife may file an action for legal separation on

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E. The wife may file an action for legal separation on the ground of repeatedphysical violence on her person (Article 55(1), FC). She may also file an actionfor judicial separation of property for failure of the husband to comply with hismarital duty of mutual respect (Article 135(4), Article 101, FC). She may also filean action for declaration of nullity of the marriage if the husband’s behaviorconstitutes psychological incapacity existing at the time of the celebration ofmarriage.On May 1, 1375,FacundomarriedPetra, by whom he had a sonSotero.Petradiedon July 1, 1996, whileFacundodied on January 1, 2002. Before his demise,Facundohad married, on July 1, 2000,Querica.Having lived together as husbandand wife since July 1, 1990,FacundoandQuericadid not secure a marriagelicense but executed the requisite affidavit for the purpose.To ensure that his inheritance rights are not adversely affected by his father’ssecond marriage,Soteronow brings a suit to seek a declaration of the nullity ofthe marriage ofFacundoandQuerica,grounded on the absence of a validmarriage license.Quericacontends that there was no need for a marriage licensein view of her having lived continuously withFacundofor five years before theirmarriage and thatSoterohas no legal personality to seek a declaration of nullityof the marriage sinceFacundois now deceased.A. Is the marriage ofFacundoandQuericavalid, despite the absence of amarriage license? Explain. (2%)B. DoesSoterohave the personality to seek a declaration of nullity of themarriage, especially now thatFacundois already deceased? Explain. (3%)(2002 Bar Question)
Page66of546Civil LawSUGGESTED ANSWER:A. The marriage withQuericais void. The exemption from the requirement of amarriage license under Art. 34, Family Code, requires that the man and woman musthave lived together as husband and wife for at least five years and without any legalimpediment to marry each other during those five years. The cohabitation ofFacundoandQuericafor six years from 1990 to July 1, 1996 whenPetradied was one with alegal impediment hence, not in compliance with the requirement of law. On the otherhand, the cohabitation thereafter until the marriage on July 1, 2000, although free fromlegal impediment, did not meet the 5-year cohabitation requirement.ALTERNATIVE ANSWER:The marriage ofFacundoandQuericais VALID. The second marriage was solemnizedon July 1, 2000 when the Family Code was already effective. The Family Code tookeffect on August 3, 1988. Under the Family Code, no marriage license is required if theparties have been cohabiting fortheperiod of five years and there is no legalimpediment. There must be no legal impediment ONLY AT THE TIME OF THESOLEMNIZATION OF THE MARRIAGE, and not the whole five- year period. This isclearly the intent of the code framers (see Minutes of the 150thjoint Civil Code andFamily Law Committees held on August 9, 1986). Also, inManzano v. Sanchez,AM No.

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Term
Spring
Professor
Atty. Legarda

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