Wednesday, February 06, 2019

Legal discussions on the Family Code of the Philippines for pastors and church members

Over the years, I’ve conducted seminars for churches, Bible schools, and groups of pastors. In these seminars, I’ve emphasized to the pastors that they must have a working knowledge of the Family Code of the Philippines.

Posted below are some discussions in my “Legal Updates” blog about the Family Code and other topics that are relevant to the Filipino family. Please post these links in your church website or social media accounts.

Most-read discussions:

Adultery, concubinage, marital infidelity, and psychological violence

Can a mother be deprived of custody of her child?

Custody battles over children: what determines fitness of a parent over another?

Financial support for an abandoned woman and her family

Did the Supreme Court order all credit card companies to reduce their interest rate of 3% monthly and penalty fee of 3%?

Divorce obtained abroad by a Filipino citizen against alien spouse recognized in the Philippines

Miss, Ms, or Mrs? Philippine law on surnames for married women

Visitation rights over illegitimate children

What surname should illegitimate children use?

Heirs and inheritances

If your spouse dies without a last will, who will inherit?

Legitimes, free portions, and intestate shares

Rights of illegitimate children when their parent dies without a last will

Who inherits from an illegitimate child?

The right of legitimate children to inherit

Settle the estate of your deceased spouse before marrying again

Is property acquired before marriage the exclusive property of each spouse or does it belong to both spouses?

Do inherited properties belong exclusively to the spouse who inherited them or to both spouses?

Last will must be probated; Preterition (when a compulsory heir is omitted in a last will)

Can nephews and nieces inherit from their grandparents, unmarried aunts or uncles?

Disinheriting children and descendants, legitimate as well as illegitimate

Disinheriting your spouse

When a man is married to or living in with several women successively or simultaneously, who has the right to inherit from him?

Article 176 of the Family Code: how to compute the inheritance of legitimate and illegitimate children; an illegitimate child gets only 50% of what a legitimate child is entitled to

Who inherits from a man or woman who died single and with no last will?

Primers on the Family Code of the Philippines

Primer on marriage

Primer on void and voidable marriages

Primer on paternity, filiation and legitimate children

Primer on illegitimate children

Primer on legitimation

Primer on legal separation

Primer on rights and obligations between husband and wife

Primer on the family and family home

Primer on the property relations between husband and wife

Primer on absolute community of property

Primer on donations by reason of marriage

Other discussions on legal procedures in civil and criminal procedures:

Legal Procedures 01: Jurisdiction of trial courts MTC, RTC

Legal Procedures 02: Jurisdiction of the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court

Legal Procedures 03: Katarungang Pambarangay

Legal Procedures 04: Cases not subject to Katarungang Pambarangay

Legal Procedures 05: Preliminary investigation

Legal Procedures 06: Arrest and bail

Legal Procedures 07: Search and seizure

Legal Procedures 08: Rights of the accused

Legal Procedures 10: Pleadings and motions before arraignment

Legal Procedures 11: Arraignment and pre-trial

Legal Procedures 12: Trial procedure in criminal cases

Legal Procedures 13: Motions during trial of a criminal case

Legal Procedures 14: Criminal cases subject to Summary Procedure

Legal Procedures 15: Summary Procedure in criminal cases

Legal Procedures 17: Promulgation of judgment in criminal cases

Legal Procedures 18: Remedies after conviction

Legal Procedures 19: Duration of penalties

Legal Procedures 20: Extinction and prescription of the crime; civil liability

Legal Procedures 22: Filing of complaint and answer in civil cases

Legal Procedures 23: Default or failure to answer

Legal Procedures 24: Motion to Dismiss

Legal Procedures 25: Kinds of pleadings and motions in civil cases

Legal Procedures 26: After the last pleading or motion

Legal Procedures 28: Pre-trial conference in civil cases (PDF)

Legal Procedures 30: Trial procedure in civil cases (PDF)

Legal Procedures 31: Civil cases under Summary Procedure (PDF)

Legal Procedures 32: Summary Procedure in civil cases (PDF)

Legal Procedures 33: Modes of discovery (PDF)

Legal Procedures 34: Provisional remedies, injunction, TRO (PDF)

Legal Procedures 35: Promulgation of judgment in civil cases (PDF)

Legal Procedures 36: Motions and petitions for losing party (PDF)

Legal Procedures 37: Execution of judgment in civil cases (PDF)

Legal Procedures 38: Appeal from MTC to RTC (PDF)

Legal Procedures 39: Appeal from RTC to Court of Appeals (PDF)

Legal Procedures 40: Appeal to the Supreme Court (PDF)

Legal Procedures 41: Special Civil Actions (PDF)

Legal Procedures 42: Special Proceeding (PDF)

Ad cautelam: filing of pleadings as precaution or appearing in court even as you question its jurisdiction

Friday, October 12, 2018

Monday, June 11, 2018

“Sex Offenders Groom Churches Too: How predatory behavior goes undetected in congregations” (Christianity Today International)

“Sex Offenders Groom Churches Too: How predatory behavior goes undetected in congregations” (Christianity Today International, June 2018) by Kimberly Harris

Excerpts:

A man who had long sexually abused children sat in front of his pastor, wanting to confess his crimes. He began cautiously, mentioning that there had been accusations against him. He got no further, as his minister broke in, “Well, that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of,” the minister said quickly. “You’re the last person I’d believe that of. End of conversation.”

This true account was shared in Anna C. Salter’s 1991 book, Predators, Pedophiles, Rapists, And Other Sex Offenders. As a psychologist who has spent over 20 years working with and studying victims and sexual offenders, Salter says that “many offenders report that religious people are even easier to fool than most people.”

Evangelical churches can also grow in understanding what kind of culture sexual abusers count on and work to create. Psychologists call it “grooming.” A proposed definition of grooming states that abusers, “... strategically manipulate the victim, their family, and the community to hide their deviant intentions and avoid detection.” The predators that are statistically likely to be in the pews, volunteering, and even behind the pulpit aren’t just grooming their victims, they are grooming their community to view them as trustworthy and even as spiritual leaders.

Related article: DSWD supports call to ‘break the silence’ in child sexual abuse and exploitation (February 2017)

Excerpts:

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), as the lead agency in the protection and promotion of children’s welfare and rights especially the disadvantaged and vulnerable, pledged to fully support the call to end child sexual abuse and exploitation during the Break the Silence National Network Launch held on Monday at the Philippine Christian University (PCU).

Break the Silence is a campaign against child sexual abuse and exploitation started by Stairway Foundation, Inc., a children’s rights organization.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

“5 Ways Your Church Could End Up In Court” (Christianity Today)

By Emily Lund at https://www.christianitytoday.com/pastors/2018/march-web-exclusives/risk-management-matters.html

Pastors must educate themselves, their boards, and other staff members on the issues that could land them in court. Each of the following stories concerns a church that recently encountered such issues.

Church Factions Compete over Property

Be aware of the legal matters that could affect your property, and ensure that policies, procedures, and documentation are in place before a disagreement erupts.

Saddleback Church Faces Sexual Abuse Allegations

Though no longer the top reason churches end up in court, sexual abuse remains a major issue in churches large and small.

No Legal Recourse for Syrian Man in Oklahoma Church Lawsuit

For most Christians, baptisms are a cause for celebration—but for an ex-Muslim man from Syria, his baptism was nearly his death sentence.

A Landmark Religious Freedom Ruling

From a risk management perspective, this case could establish a critical precedent for cases involving churches and religious freedom.

Violent Incidents at Churches—and a Deadly Common Denominator


In November of 2016, in Jamestown, New York, 36-year-old Shari J. Robbins encountered her estranged husband—against whom she had a restraining order— in a church parking lot. During the confrontation, Robbins’s husband shot and killed her.

Read the complete article.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

“5 Things The Bible Says About Paying Pastors or Church Leaders” (Christian Media Magazine)

Excerpt:

“It always seems to be a constant source of contention; how much should a pastor make, if anything? On the one hand, people argue that they are to be servants and thus can serve within the church as pastor while working elsewhere. They will cite the Apostle Paul and say that he had a tent-making job, then claim that modern pastors must do the same. So, it’s a question that is on a lot of people’s minds. The Bible, however, clears up any confusion on the subject.”

Read the complete article by Michael Krauszer.

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

“Feelings versus Truth” (Christian Media Magazine)

Excerpt:

“Even if we wholly believe in the infallibility of the Bible and characterize God as our “Lord”, the majority of us still generally live out of our limbic system. You know – the emotional part of our brain that virtually each and every time overrides our prefrontal cortex, which is the part of our brain that was designed to compel us to pursue wise decisions. I have heard it said that we make 90% of our decisions based on how we feel. And as we witness every day, that process produces an overwhelming assortment of turmoil and heartbreak.

“For those of us who characterize ourselves as Christians, let’s take a look at how we stack up in this area. Compelling statistics from various sources indicate:

  • Extramarital affairs are nearly as prevalent in the church as they are outside of the church

  • Pornography use is already rampant among those who attend church as roughly 70% of men 30% of women struggle with unbiblical compulsive sexual activities they cannot stop

  • Road rage, though sadly joked about so often within the church is on a regular basis”

Read the complete article by Steve Hunt.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Reformers Unanimous (RU) Recovery Ministries Conference, Bethany Makati, Nov. 28, 2016

This one-day conference, starting 9 AM, will discuss how pastors and churches can deal with various kinds of addictions.

This ministry is based in North Love Baptist Church in Rockford, Illinois (Paul Kingsbury, pastor) with Dr. Ben Burks as International Director.

Besides Pastor Kingsbury and Dr. Burks, the RU team includes Sis. Wendy Burks, Missionary Tim Farley, and Bro. Eddie Ferguson.

The RU team has previously held this same conference in Batangas City hosted by the Good Shepherd Baptist Church.