What is RA No. 9255?
It is a law allowing illegitimate children to use the surname of their father provided that the father has acknowledged the child, amending Article 176 of Executive Order No. 209 (Family Code of the Philippines).
The law was signed signed by President Arroyo on 24 February 2004 and took effect on 19 March 2004, fifteen days after its publication in the Manila Times and Malaya.
The implementing rules and regulations (IRR) was approved on 18 May 2004 and took effect on 02 June 2004, fifteen days after its publication in the Manila Times.
Scope of RA 9255
This law applies to all illegitimate children born before or after the effectivity of RA 9255 which covers unregistered births and registered births wherein illegitimate children use the surname of their mother.
What are the requirements in order that an illegitimate child can use the surname of his/her father?
The requirement is a document, public or private, wherein the child is recognized as such by the father. These are the affidavit found at the back of the Certificate of Live Birth (COLB), a separate public document executed by the father, or a private handwritten instrument made by the father expressly recognizing the child as his. In case of the latter, the instrument must be in the handwriting of the father and signed by him.
The affidavit to Use the Surname of the Father (AUSF) is used in cases where recognition is made through a private handwritten instrument, or when the birth has already been registered under the mother's surname with or without father's recognition.
For private handwritten instruments, other documents are required to be submitted to support the claim made. In particular, submission of any two of the following is needed:
- Employment records
- SSS/GSIS recoreds
- Certification of membership in any organization
- Statement of Assets and Liabilities
- Income Tax Return (ITR)
Consent of the child is necessary, if the child is eighteen (18) years old or more at the time of the recognition.
Who may file?
The father, mother, child, if of legal age, or the guardian may file the public document or AUSF in order for the child to use the surname of the father.
Where to file the public document of the AUSF?
- If the child was born in the Philippines and the public document of the AUSF was executed in the Philippines, the public document or the AUSF shall be registered at the Local Civil Registry Office (LCRO) of the place where the child was born.
- If the child was born in the Philippines and the public document or the AUSF was executed outside the Philippines, the public document or the AUSF shall be registered at the LCRO of Manila.
- If the child was born outside the Philippines and the public document or the AUSF was executed in or outside the Philippines, the public document or the AUSF shall be registered at the LCRO of Manila.
After registration of the public document or the AUSF, the LRCO of the place of birth shall annotate the record of birth and the appropriate entry in the registry book. For births which occurred outside the Philippiens, the annotation of the record of birth shall be done by the OCRG.
When should the public document or the AUSF be filed?
Recognition or acknowledgement made in a public document other than the record of birth or the AUSF shall be registered within 20 days from the date of execution.
Can an illegitimate childe whose mother is below 18 years old when the child was born use the surname of his/her father pursuant to RA 9255?
Yes, provided that the father of the child has admitted paternity of the child.
For registered births, can the original surname of the child in the certificate of live birth be changed or corrected after availing RA 9255?
No. No entries in the Certificate of Live Birth shall be changed or corrected. Only annotations shall be written in the Certificate of Live Birth indicating the surname that the child shall use.
For births yet to be registered, can the child automatically use the surname of his/her father?
Yes, provided that the father executes an Affidavit of Admission of Paternity at the time of registration.
How to secure a copy of the annotated document from OCRG?
Copies of annotated documents which underwent through RA 9255 can be secured at the OCRG after submission of the following documents:
1. Certified copy of the original Certificate of Live Birth (no annotation)
2. Copy of the annotated document
3. Certified copy of the public document and AUSF or private handwritten instrument and AUSF, together with the supporting documents and consent of the child, if eighteen (18) years old or over.
How much is the processing fee for an annotated document?
Processing fee is P125 per copy