President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a new law simplifying adoption by making the status of a child with simulated birth as legally adopted.
Republic Act (RA) 11222 or the “Simulated Birth Rectification Act” allows the rectification of the simulated birth of a child if the simulation was made for his/her best interest.
Simulated birth is the tampering of the civil registry record of a person to make it appear that a child was born to a person who is not the biological mother. The act causes the loss of the true identity and status of such child.
RA 11222, however, fixes the status and filiation of a child whose birth was simulated by giving such child all the benefits of adoption and ensuring that such child shall be entitled to all the rights provided by law to legally adopted children.
The law also seeks to make adoption proceeding simpler and less costly for a child who has been living with the adoptive parents for at least three years.
Those who simulated the birth record of a child prior to the law’s effectivity shall be exempt from criminal, civil and administrative liability, provided that a petition for adoption with an application for the rectification of the simulated birth record is filed 10 years from the law’s effectivity.
The eligible parents, however, must be a Filipino citizen, of legal age, possess full civil capacity and legal rights, and of good moral character. Also, they should have not been convicted of any crime involving moral turpitude, be emotionally and psychologically capable of caring for children, and be in a position to support and care for the child.
For couples where one of the adopters is a foreign national married to a Filipino, the foreigner must have been residing in the Philippines for at least three consecutive years before the filing of the petition for adoption.