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K. Crimes against the civil status of persons

1. Simulation of births, substitution of one child for another

1ST MODE (SIMULATION) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender simulates births. (Article 347, Act No. 3815, Revised Penal Code)

2ND MODE (PHYSICIAN/ETC.) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender is a physician or surgeon or public officer;

2) He cooperates in the simulation of births; and,

3) It is in violation of the duties of his profession or office. (Paragraph 3, Article 347, Ibid.)

2. Substitution of one child for another

1ST MODE (SIMULATION) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender substitutes one child for another. (Article 347, Ibid.)

2ND MODE (PHYSICIAN/ETC.) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender is a physician or surgeon or public officer;

2) He cooperates in THE substitution of one child for another; and,

3) It is in violation of the duties of his profession or office. (Paragraph 3, Article 347, Ibid.)

3. Concealment or abandonment of a legitimate child

1ST MODE (SIMULATION) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender conceals or abandons any legitimate child; and,

2) It is with intent to cause such child to lose its civil status. (Article 347, Ibid.)

2ND MODE (PHYSICIAN/ETC.) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender is a physician or surgeon or public officer;

2) He cooperates in the concealment or abandonment of a legitimate child; and,

3) It is in violation of the duties of his profession or office. (Paragraph 3, Article 347, Ibid.)

4. Usurpation of civil status

ELEMENTS:

1) The offender usurps the civil status of another; and,

2) He do so for the purpose of defrauding the offended party or his heirs. (Article 348, Act No. 3815, Revised Penal Code)

5. Bigamy

ELEMENTS:

1) That the offender has been legally married;

2) That the marriage has not been legally dissolved or, in case his or her spouse is absent, the absent spouse could not yet be presumed dead according to the Civil Code;

3) That he or she contracts a second or subsequent marriage; and,

4) That the second or subsequent marriage has all the essential requisites for validity. (Lasanas v. People, G.R. No. 159031, 23 June 2014)

EVEN IF THE SUBSEQUENT MARRIAGE IS VOIDED: The accused may still be charged with the crime of bigamy, even if there is a subsequent declaration of the nullity of the second marriage, so long as the first marriage was still subsisting when the second marriage was celebrated. (Capili v. People, G.R. No. 183805, 03 July 2013)

IF SUBSEQUENT MARRIAGE WAS VOID DUE TO FAULT OF THE ACCUSED: The cause of action of the accused, meaning her affirmative defense in this criminal case of bigamy, is that her marriage with Santos was void for having been secured without a marriage license. But as elucidated earlier, they themselves perpetrated a false Certificate of Marriage by misrepresenting that they were exempted from the license requirement based on their fabricated claim that they had already cohabited as husband and wife for at least five years prior their marriage. In violation of our law against illegal marriages, the accused married Santos while knowing full well that they had not yet complied with the five-year cohabitation requirement under Article 34 of the Family Code. Consequently, it will be the height of absurdity for this Court to allow the accused to use her illegal act to escape criminal conviction. (Santiago v. People, G.R. No. 200233, 15 July 2015)

6. Marriage contracted against provisions of laws

ELEMENTS:

1) The offender has not complied with or contracts marriage in disregard of a legal impediment; and,

2) It is not included in the provisions of the next proceeding article. (Article 350, Act No. 3815, Revised Penal Code)

7. Premature marriages

1ST MODE (WIDOW) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender is a widow; and,

2) She marries within three hundred and one day from the date of the death of her husband, or before having delivered if she shall have been pregnant at the time of his death. (Article 351, Ibid.)

2ND MODE (351 DAYS) – ELEMENTS:

1) The offender is a woman whose marriage has been annulled or dissolved; and,

2) She marries before her delivery or before the expiration of the period of three hundred and one day after the legal separation. (Paragraph 2, Article 351, Ibid.)

8. Performance of illegal marriage ceremony

ELEMENTS:

1) Authority of the solemnizing officer; and,

2) His performance of an illegal marriage ceremony. (Ronulo v. People, G.R. No. 182438, 02 July 2014)

MARRIAGE CEREMONY: No prescribed form of religious rite for the solemnization of the marriage is required. However, he law sets the minimum requirements constituting a marriage ceremony: first, there should be the personal appearance of the contracting parties before a solemnizing officer; and second, heir declaration in the presence of not less than two witnesses that they take each other as husband and wife. (Ibid.)

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