Dear Atty. Duran-Schulze,
The father of my child is abroad and has not given support to our child for five years. I attempted to contact him regarding this but he responded with anger. Please note that he consented to have our child use his surname by signing the birth certificate. Our child has been using his surname ever since.
How do I legally pressure him regarding his refusal to send child support?
You can explore three legal options on how to ask for support from the child’s father.
Invoke R.A. 9262 or the Violence Against Women and Children Act of 2004. Section 3 (a) (D) mentions that the act of withdrawing support from a woman and/or her child who are legally entitled to the same is deemed as economic abuse. This is a form of violence against women and children.
Apply for a protection order under Section 8 of the court ruling in Garcia v. Drilon (G.R. No. 179267). This protection order directs the father of your child to provide “legal support.” Section 8 (g) describes legal support as a “percentage of the income or salary of the respondent to be withheld regularly by the respondent’s employer for the same to be automatically remitted directly to the woman.” This is meant to “safeguard the offended parties from further harm” and “ensure their financial support.” If the father does not remit at all or is delayed in his remittance, he can be held for indirect contempt of court.
File for a Temporary Protection Order (TPO). This order is stipulated under Section 15 of R.A. 9262. The court ruling in Tua v. Mangrobang noted that TPOs may be granted ex parte. This means that the respondent-father does not have to be present during the hearing for the grant of a TPO. This especially applies in your case since the father of your child is living abroad. However, you need to provide affidavits to show that the father is, indeed, out of the country for the TPO to be issued.
We hope that this answers your question on how to file a case for child support. For further assistance, Duran & Duran-Schulze Law is ready to assist you. Call us at (+632) 478 5826 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also send your message to us here.
Please be informed that the legal opinion above is based solely on facts provided to us and our appreciation of the same.