Salient Features of the RH Bill (HB 5043)

Posted by Admin | Posted in Family Law, Government and the State, Philippine Constitution | Posted on 17-10-2010

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  • State Policies

1) The state upholds and promotes responsible parenthood, informed choice, birth spacing and respect for life in conformity with internationally recognized human rights standards. (Section 2)

2) The state guarantees universal access to medically-safe, legal, affordable and quality reproductive health care services, methods, devices, supplies and relevant information thereon even as it prioritizes the needs of women and children among other underprivileged sectors. (Section 2)

  • Important Guiding Principles

1) Gender equality and women empowerment are central elements of reproductive health and population development. (Section 3c)

2) The limited resources of the country cannot be suffered to be spread so thinly to service a burgeoning multitude that makes the allocations grossly inadequate and effectively meaningless. (Section 3e)

  • Abortion is still a crime.

While nothing in this Act changes the law on abortion, as abortion remains a crime and is punishable, the government shall ensure that women seeking care for post-abortion complications shall be treated and counseled in a humane, non-judgmental and compassionate manner. (Section 3m)

  • Reproductive Health Rights

The rights of individuals and couples to decide freely and responsibly the number, spacing and timing of their children; to make other decisions concerning reproduction free of discrimination, coercion and violence; to have the information and means to carry out their decisions; and to attain the highest standard of sexual and reproductive health. (Section 4d)

  • Reproductive Health Care

This refers to the availability of and access to a full range of methods, techniques, supplies and services that contribute to reproductive and sexual health and well-being by preventing and solving reproductive health-related problems in order to achieve enhancement of life and personal relations. (Section 4g) Read the rest of this entry »

Secret Marriage

Posted by Admin | Posted in Civil Law, Family Law | Posted on 10-10-2010

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A legally non-existent phrase but ordinarily used to refer to a civil marriage celebrated without the knowledge of the relatives and/or friends of either or both of the contracting parties. (Republic vs. Court of Appeals, 236 SCRA 262)

In what people call a “secret marriage”, only the bride and groom and some very close friends or relatives are present. Kept secret from the parents, there are no costly preparations and definitely no wedding invitations to give out. There is no walk-down-the-aisle but at least there is that classic exchange of vows and the you-may-now-kiss-the-bride portion which seals the marital agreement.

Legally speaking, there is no such thing as a secret marriage because there is that requirement of publication when couples apply for a marriage license. Before issuing the license, the local civil registrar is required by law to publish a Notice containing the full names, residences and other information about the applicants. This Notice will be posted for ten consecutive days on a bulletin board outside the office of the civil registrar. This bulletin board must be located in a conspicuous place within the building and accessible to the public. The Notice should request all persons who know of any legal impediment to the marriage to report such fact to the civil registrar.

The marriage may be a secret only because the parents of either of the couple are not aware of it. But since couples should apply for a marriage license only in their place of residence, it is very likely that the relatives and the parents will discover the planned marriage if both of them reside in the same place, especially in small towns where news and gossips spread faster than the speed of light. Read the rest of this entry »