The State created an exception to the general rule provided by Article 376 and 412 of the Civil Code, that “No person can change his name or surname without judicial authority”, and “No entry in a civil register shall be changed or corrected without a judicial order”, respectively. This is laid under Republic Act No. 9048.
Sec. 3 of RA 9048, states that “any person having direct and personal interest in the correction of a clerical or typographical error in an entry and/or change of first name or nickname in the civil register may file, in person, a verified petition with the local civil registry office of the city or municipality where the record being sought to be corrected or changed in kept, or with the nearest Philippine Consulates for citizens who are presently residing or domiciled in foreign countries.”
What are Clerical and Typographical Errors?
Clerical or Typographical Errors refers to a mistake committed in the performance of clerical work in writing, copying, transcribing, or typing an entry in the civil register on the entry of day and month in the date of birth or the sex of the person, which is visible to the eyes or obvious to the understanding, and can be corrected or changed only by reference to other existing record or records: Provided, however, that no correction must involve the change of nationality, age (refers to the correction on the year of birth), or legitimacy status of the petitioner/document owner.
Who May File the Petition?
Any person having direct and personal interest in the correction of a clerical or typographical error in an entry and/or change of first name or nickname in the civil register may file, such as:
- owner of the record
- owner’s spouse
- other person duly authorized by law or by the owner of the document sought to be corrected;
- if owner of the record is a minor or physically or mentally incapacitated, petition may be filed by his spouse, or any of his children, parents, brothers; sisters; grandparents, guardians, or persons duly authorized by law.
Where to File?
The verified petition shall be filed before the local civil registry office of the city or municipality where the record being sought to be corrected or changed is kept.
In case the petitioner has already migrated to another place in the country and it would not be practical for such party to appear in person before the local civil registrar keeping the documents to be corrected or changed, the petition may be filed, in person, with the local civil registrar of the place where the petitioner is presently residing or domiciled in such foreign country before the nearest Philippine Consulate.
If the petitioner is born abroad, the verified petition shall be filed before the Philippine Consulate where the birth was reported.
What are the Grounds for a Change of First Name or Nickname?
- The petitioner finds the first name or nickname to be ridiculous, tainted with dishonor, or extremely difficult to write or pronounce;
- The new first name or nickname has been habitually and continuously used by the petitioner and he has been publicly known by the first name or nickname in the community, or;
- The change will avoid confusion
What are the Supporting Documents needed?
- Certified true machine copy of the certificate or of the page of the registry book containing the entry or entries sought to be corrected or changed;
- At least two public or private documents showing the correct entry or entries upon which the correction or change shall be based, such as baptismal certificate, voter’s affidavit, employment record, GSIS/SSS record, medical record, business record, drivers’ license, insurance, land titles, certificate of land transfer, bank passbook;
- Certification from appropriate law enforcement agencies showing that you have no pending case or no criminal record