Philippines Report

No Divorce No Problem: New Extraordinary Marriage Law Gains Support in Congress

A new bill abolishing annulment and prenuptial agreement is gaining support among the members of the House of Representatives.

The controversial but comprehensive bill would put an end to any unhealthy marriage almost automatically, paving the way for incompatible couples to find new partners legally.

Drafted by former House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, and five other Congressmen, the new bill will be the most popular bill if passed into law according to law experts in UP and Ateneo, who called the bill “almost perfect and extraordinary”

 

 

According to Alvarez, the main purpose of the bill is not only to build happy and compatible families but also to end the misery for many incompatible couples who can’t afford annulment.

“This is 100 times better than divorce because this is fair to every party. If they decided to continue their relationship then can renew for a longer contract after five years”, Alvarez said.

A poll of UP and Ateneo professors who first got the copy of the bill praised the authors and gave it a go.

Among the most important parts of the bill are as follows:

  1. A marriage license will be given an expiration date. For the newly-wed couple, a fixed 5-year contract is given. They can choose an option to renew for another five years, or ten years upon expiration. For third renewal, the 20-year option is available, and for the fourth renewal, the lifetime option is available. They can always choose to select five years if they wish to.
  2. The annulment will be abolished so a couple who don’t want to live together anymore can just wait for their marriage contract expiration date.
  3. The prenuptial agreement will be abolished but a clause on marriage contract about the ownership of both parties can be added.
  4. Properties and wealth owned by both parties cannot be made a conjugal property automatically and remains their own.
  5. Living together while being unmarried will become punishable by law and can result to up to 5 years in prison.
  6. Having a baby while being unmarried can result to up to 10 years in prison.

FEU College of Law Dean Atty. Mel called the bill “almost perfect” during his daily radio program on Friday.

The Congress is expected to deliberate and vote sometime this May.

 

While the Catholic organization is expected to oppose, the bill could be the most powerful law if passed by the lawmakers.

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