Philippine Marriage Law: Separating Legally To Avoid Complications

Question: I married a woman a few years ago, but we decided to part ways after just a year together. We have no children, and it’s been three years now since we separated.

A few months after our separation, I found out she was in a relationship and was living with another man. I am not sure if the relationship continued because she moved to another place and I have not heard from her or from our common friends.

Right now, I am also living with another woman. We are planning to have a family and a child, but I just want to know what the possible consequences will be since my first wife and I did not legally separate – we are still married on paper, although the marriage is already void. Please advise. Thanks!

Answer: It is important to remember that your having a child with your current partner is not actually the issue here.

With or without a child, you are already violating the Penal Code of the Philippines by having a relationship with another woman while still married to your original wife. You might be held liable for the crime of concubinage under Art. 334 of the Revised Penal Code.

And if your wife is in a relationship with another man, she is in violation of such law, as well. She might be held liable for crime of adultery under Art. 333 of the Revised Penal Code.

Take note that the said laws may apply with or without pregnancy or illegitimate children involved.

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