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Erica Torres grew up to be a hopeless romantic. That is why when she met Kaito Suzuki, a Japanese National, they got married without delay. A civil wedding was solemnized at Candaba, Pampanga.

But the tension arose when their differences surfaced. After 2 years of marriage, Kaito decided to obtain a divorce of his marriage with Erica in Japan. It was then granted under Japanese laws. Kaito immediately remarried thereafter.

Erica registered the Divorce Certificate with the Office of the Civil Registry of Manila. She thought that she was again at her ‘single’ status and started dating again.

Then, Erica met John Graves. The fast lad invited Erica to get married. They had their civil wedding in Sta. Ana, Pampanga. Now, John is eager to take Erica to the beautiful beaches of Hawaii for their honeymoon.

But Erica had to renew her Philippine passport. Erica went to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to apply for renewal. She also wants to use her married surname “Graves”. But alas! She was told at the DFA that it cannot be issued to her until she can prove by competent court decision that her marriage with John Graves is valid.

Erica was puzzled and terrified at the same time. Fortunately, she was referred by a friend to VERified. After her personal consultation with a birth certificate specialist, Erica learned that the DFA cannot issue her a passport bearing her second husband’s name as her first marriage is still considered existing. The recognition of her second marriage will only take place after the recognition of her foreign divorce from her first husband.

The presentation solely of the divorce decree between Erica and Kaito is not enough. Both the divorce decree and the governing Kaito’s personal law, Japan, must be proven before a court in the Philippines. After the Court recognizes the divorce decree as valid, the court order needs to be registered with the civil registrar of the place where the court is. After this step, her court documents and proof of the registration will be brought to the civil registrar of the place where the marriage was celebrated. It is only then that Erica’s first marriage certificate gets cancelled.

Through the help of Erica’s lawyer, she was able to have the divorce decree recognize in a Court here in the Philippines. VERified helped her register this Court decree. This enabled Erica to successfully obtain her renewed passport. At this moment, Erica and John are boarding their plane to Hawaii. The palm trees are waiting!

Another story inspired by true events, brought to you by the VERified Team. For other similar problems, you can set up an appointment with us. Please call (02) 7051265 or (02) 7051277 for further inquiries.


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