Abandoned husband wants to remarry
"My wife worked overseas without my knowledge and left our child to the care of her relatives. We have been separated for almost 15 years now and she has a new family abroad. Based in the circumstances, may I now get married?
A marriage contracted before a previous marriage has been dissolved is considered bigamous wherein the person who contracted the subsequent marriage may be liable for Bigamy under Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code. Hence, a married person can only remarry if his previous marriage has been dissolved either through death of his spouse or through a judgment of annulment or declaration of nullity of marriage rendered by the court.The fact that your wife has abandoned you and has a family of her own does not give you permission to marry again. Under the circumstances, you should first secure a judgment of annulment of your marriage or a declaration that your marriage is null and void.
Abandonment for more than one (1) year as in your case, however, merely constitutes basis for legal separation under Article 55 of the Family Code. A judgment of legal separation will not entitle the spouses to remarry since the marriage bond is not dissolved.Nevertheless, such circumstances may be an evidence of the psychological incapacity of your wife to perform her obligation as your spouse and mother to your child. Such incapacity under Article 36 of the Family Code is a ground for the declaration of nullity of marriage.
It provides that “a marriage contracted by any party who, at the time of the celebration, was psychologically incapacitated to comply with the essential marital obligations of marriage, shall likewise be void even if such incapacity becomes manifest only after its solemnization.”Psychological incapacity refers to no less than a mental (nor physical) incapacity. The intendment of the law has been to confine the meaning of psychological incapacity to the most serious cases of personality disorders, which clearly demonstrate an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and significance to the marriage.This psychological condition must exist at the time the marriage is celebrated. This must be characterized by (a) gravity, (b) juridical antecedence, and (c) incurability (Santos v. CA, G.R. No. 112019 January 4, 1995, 240 SCRA 20). Cases involving questions of psychological incapacity are decided based on the facts of each case since no case can be considered as on “all fours” with another. Thus, the court, upon assessment of the totality of the facts of your case, may still dissolve your marriage if is proved that the acts of your wife are indicative of her psychological incapacity.We wish to remind you that the above legal opinion is solely based on our appreciation of the problem that you have stated. The opinion may vary when other facts are elaborated.
Editor’s note: Dear PAO is a daily column of the Public Attorney’s Office. Questions for Chief Acosta may be sent to email@example.com or via text message (key in: Times dearpao and send to 2299)."
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"Abandoned husband wants to remarry"
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and updated on 14 September 2021