House Bill No. 6082: Reversion to Maiden Name Act

Our current law prohibits the use of the wife's maiden name unless the changes have undergone a judicial process after the court declares nullity of marriage. Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, also the former President of the Philippines proposed a bill that will entitle women to revert to her surname without court order. House Bill No. 6082 or the Reversion to Maiden Name Act seeks to bypass expensive court process in terms of surname revision. With this bill, a woman can revert to her maiden surname on the following circumstances: 

(1) after her marriage has been judicially declared null and void or after its annulment;

(2) After a judicial declaration of legal separation, provided that there has been no manifestation of reconciliation filed with the court;

(3) After a judicial declaration of separation of property, provided there has been no subsequent decree reviving the old property regime between the spouses;

(4) If the spouses stipulated in their marriage settlement that a regime of separation of properties shall govern their property relations;

(5) If the petitioner has been de facto separated from or abandoned by her husband for a period of not less than 10 years;

(6) If the petitioner’s husband may be presumed dead.

If this bill will be enacted into a law, the woman will no longer have to pay for the annulment proceedings, which usually range from P150,000 to P200,000. For the conversion of documents, the woman needs at least P50,000 to change the identification cards including Social Security System ID, telecommunications bills, postal ID and many others. 

The Republic Act 386 currently has the following conditions in terms of the use of surname: 

Art. 370. A married woman may use:

      (1) Her maiden first name and surname and add her husband's surname, or

      (2) Her maiden first name and her husband's surname or 

      (3) Her husband's full name, but prefixing a word indicating that she is his wife, such as "Mrs."

Art. 371. In case of annulment of marriage, and the wife is the guilty party, she shall resume her maiden name and surname. If she is the innocent spouse, she may resume her maiden name and surname. However, she may choose to continue employing her former husband's surname, unless:

      (1) The court decrees otherwise, or

      (2) She or the former husband is married again to another person.

Art. 372. When legal separation has been granted, the wife shall continue using her name and surname employed before the legal separation.

Art. 373. A widow may use the deceased husband's surname as though he were still living, in accordance with Article 370.

Art. 374. In case of identity of names and surnames, the younger person shall be obliged to use such additional name or surname as will avoid confusion.

Pinoy Attorney

Written by : Pinoy Attorney