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PHILIPPINES: Mother wants custody of her child

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  • PHILIPPINES: Mother wants custody of her child

    The situation: A 17 year old girl "Liza" becomes pregnant. The father asks her to get an abortion; she refuses; he leaves. By the third month of pregnancy she enters a new relationship with "Larry", of the same young age. From then they live together as partners in the home of the father's parents, along with 8 others. The baby is registered with parents names Liza and Larry, and not the biological father. Through a number of circumstances (including a stressful arguing househild, dominating parents, an unhelpful unemployed and often drunk partner, and possible post natal depression) Liza felt obliged to leave the home when her son was one year old. She was "not allowed" to take her baby although she wanted to. The parents of the "father" said they would keep the baby. They have denied her access to her own child.

    Almost one year on, and wider support and some counselling, Liza now almost 20, wants full custody of her nearly two year-old child. With help she has written to the father requesting full access and custody and this has been refused.

    She has then gone to the Department of Social Welfare and Development who seem to support her case. The DSWD requested the father to bring the child to the DSWD but this was refused (by the parents of the father). The DSWD referred Liza to their own own lawyer who wrote (not in the name of the DSWD, but in Liza's name) to the father "inviting" him to a meeting to discuss custody. This was refused with the threat to vigorously defend custody claims by the mother. That's where it lies.

    My questions:
    1. What is the role of the DSWD in progressing a custody battle. Is it their battle or strictly a civil matter between the feuding parties?
    2. What are the legal steps and processes that are needed to progress this case?
    3. To what extent can appeals and stonewalling drag this out??
    4. If somehow (but unlikely) an affidavit is obtained from the biological father accepting his parental position then would this undermine the total claim by the Larry family? Or do we need to go down the DNA track? Surely if it was proved that Larry is not the biological father then they would have no case and essentially they are kidnappers?
    5. What costs might we be up for here?

  • #2
    Re: PHILIPPINES: Mother wants custody of her child

    She can go into court and the court will decide what custody and visitation he will have.

    But she will get some contact under any circumstances. She may even get full custody back.

    Most likely the court will try to split time where the child is now and time with the mother.


    • #3
      Re: PHILIPPINES: Mother wants custody of her child

      Not sure if this applies in Philippine law as well, but Larry could not be charged with kidnapping since he is the child's legal father.

      It's too late for the biological father to step in and "accept" his position, as the child has been reared and financially supported by the legal father all these years, and that is the position of the court. The biological father has no legal rights to this child whatsoever, and no court in its right mind would grant him them at this point in time.

      It would uproot this poor child's life if that scenario were to take place anyway, so it's don't expect it to happen.

      As it stands now, Larry has a much stronger case than the mother outlined in your scenario. Like it or not, he IS the LEGAL father to this child. NOT the bio dad.


      • #4
        Re: PHILIPPINES: Mother wants custody of her child

        Im not an lawyer. But after i have understood of Phi law. The girl shall have sole custody of the kid. She was not married, so after the family Law in Phi, she have the Sole Custody. I think she has a good case. And the Man who have the kid was not the father too. He have no legal right to have the kid. I think we mybe can say this is kidnapping of a kid


        • #5
          Re: PHILIPPINES: Mother wants custody of her child

          Philippine law sucks BIG TIME!


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