April 21, 2015
In this issue, Atty. Barney Almazar will advise single mothers ways to cough up the cash from deadbeat dads. In addition to legal tips on how to demand support fathers rush to pay, the article will also discuss the penalties for missing a support payment which can include revocation of professional licenses and even, in some cases, jail term for up to a year.
While it’s easy for a mother to condemn the father of her children who can’t or won’t support their kids as incorrigible scofflaws — and treat him accordingly — that doesn’t get her very far if her goal is to make him pay up for the Pampers.
The noncustodial father has the responsibility to meet his financial obligations to the children he brings to the world. Even if the marriage has been dissolved, the ex-wife may still be entitled to alimony.
A common misconception is that Filipino fathers who are outside the Philippines are not within the reach of Philippine laws relating to family obligations. Article 15 of the Philippine Civil Code provides that laws relating to family rights and duties, or to the status, condition and legal capacity of persons are binding upon citizens of the Philippines, even though living abroad. In fact, a petition to terminate the father’s parental authority over the child pursuant to Article 229 of the Family Code of the Philippines can be filed by the mother even if both of them are outside the Philippines.
Under Article 194 of the Family Code, support comprises everything indispensable for sustenance, dwelling, clothing, medical attendance, education and transportation, in keeping with the financial capacity of the family.
The mothers should note that Section 3 B (3) of Republic Act 7610 of the Philippines, otherwise known as the Special Protection of Children against Child Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act considers the unreasonable deprivation of the child’s basic needs for survival such as food and shelter as a form of child abuse.
The amount of support shall be in proportion to the resources or means of the father and to the necessities of the child.
The child’s monthly support is not a fixed amount and shall be reduced or increased proportionately, according to the reduction or increase of the needs of the child and the resources or means of the father obliged to furnish the same.
In cases where parents have mutually agreed on the amount of financial support through a settlement agreement, the contractual support may be adjusted whenever modification is necessary due to changes in the circumstances manifestly beyond what has been previously contemplated by the parents.
The father is given the option to fulfill his obligation either by paying the allowance fixed or by receiving and maintaining in the family dwelling the child he is required to support. However, if there is a moral or legal obstacle (for example, the father is living with his paramour), the latter alternative will not be allowed.
The child support laws are fair not just to the father but to the children as well. No father will become bankrupt due to a child support order. He may go broke because he is in debts or due to his wrong choices—but this is his problem, not his child’s problem and no child should have to pay for the bad decisions of his dad.
The initial remedy is for the mother to send a demand letter to the uncooperative father pursuant to Article 272 (1) of the UAE Civil Code as amended by Federal Law No. 1 of 1987.
Should the father fails to provide support despite several demands from the mother, a legal case can be initiated against him before the UAE Family Courts. The mother can also request the father’s employer to make direct monthly payments to her out of his salary. This is of course without prejudice to the filing executory reliefs before the Philippine Courts.
Compared to Philippine laws, UAE laws are tougher on the miscreant fathers. Penalties for missing a support payment can be up to a year in the prison as UAE jurisprudence considers it a crime against the family if the father refuses to pay alimony and child support. Article 330 of the UAE Penal Code states:
Shall be punishable by confinement for a period not exceeding one year and by a fine not exceeding ten thousand Dirhams or by one of these two penalties any individual against whom a self-executing judgment is rendered, imposing upon him the payment of alimony to his spouse, any of his relatives or legal dependents, or the payment of salary of the guardian or foster-mother or rent of a house and who, after three months from the day on which he has been warned to pay, refrains from performing the obligation although he is capable of fulfilling it.”
If you are complaining about paying your child support, is it really about the money or is it all about having to pay it to your ex that gets under your skin? You should be able to separate your relationship with your ex from your responsibility towards your children. No child should suffer because you are so angry with your ex.
Every parent, whether non-custodial or custodial, has a duty to financially and emotionally support his or her children. Financial support should be provided for the child by both parents equitably.
A parent should consider not just the legal repercussions of ignoring or evading child support, but more importantly, the best interest of the child.
For more information on family law, readers can visit www.gulflaw.info or call 04-4492076. Gulf Law and volunteer Filipino lawyers hold monthly free legal aid and seminars at the Philippine Consulate in Dubai and Embassy in Abu Dhabi.
Atty. Barney is a director at the Commercial Department of Gulf Law in the Middle East, Philippines and United Kingdom. He holds a UAE legal consultancy license and is a lifetime member of the Philippine Bar. He is a holder of Juris Doctor and MBA dual degrees with concentration on International Business and European Union Law (University of London).
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The father of my 2 kids is an emirati of dubai but we are not married. He is in dubai and i am here in the philippines. Can i file for a child support in dubai court?
My son’s father is working in Dubai and has not given proper support for the last 12 years. He would give him toys once or twice a year but thats it. How do i get about filing child support?
Hi Atty. . I just want to file a case against the father of my son who’s been working in jeddah, my son is now 4 years old. the father has not supported our child, my son is not carrying the last name of her dad and we are not married. I hope you can help us with this matter.
I have 3 kids with my ex-husband who’s been working at ADNOC Abu Dhabi UAE for almost 10 years but until now we haven’t receive any support from him. Please help me out on this my eldest is now 1st year highschool and my youngest is in grade 3 and I have a huge a balance from their school. Please help me out how can I file a support from their father.
hi good day! I hope you will response with my message. The father of my child is still working there in dubai,he is indian and hes not supporting amything to our child. I was forced by our company to resign because i got pregnant. Please do help me
I would like to file a case against my ex for unpaid child support… He has not paid any child support since the birth of our child now 15 yrs old. He is currently residing in Dubai. Please contact me. Thanks
I have a 4 y.o. Child to a Filipino father working in a company in Dubai ,we have agreed that he has to send the child 18,ooo pesos a month, that doesnot includes her school and needs supply in school . Month of May 2016 he didnot send any amount. I keep calling his office and cellphone he send only 10,000 pesos for the month of June. Depite of sending him email messages and calling to his phone he didnot respond. It’s been 2 weeks now that the class started already I can’t send my child to school . For I have no work as of the moment because I take care of the child.
Kindly advise me to know on what to do regarding my concerns . I think he is living now with a woman and 2 kids .But he is still married to his wife .
I’m worried of my child’s welfare since his woman is calling me a lot and I choose not to answer and sending me threats, text messages that he will not sends money anymore , and even send me awful messages and to my child. I could not call him sumtimes for it cost a lot . I rather send him messages on his e mail add. But his woman is the one who can received without him answering my mails.please help.
Thank you for your time and understanding .
hi Atty Barney. I just want to file a case against the father of my daughter who’s been working for Emarr Properties in dubai, my daughter is now 10 yrs old and will turn 11 on october. for almost 10 years, the father has not supported our child, my daughter is carrying the last name of her dad, even though we are not married. I hope you can help us with this matter. I found out that the father is spending much of his money for materials things, he has a GT mustang race car and several expensive gadgets and things.
im working in dubai as well my x husband and im asking him to share for my expenses for our two kids, were legally married and seperated for almost 6 years now and his always telling me what he can give thats the only money he will send, for almost 4 years of him working in dubai his so irresponsible and i just ask him to support regularly later last year which he agreed but im not satisfied of what his sending to my two kids sometimes 800aed or 700 aed this is beyond my kids expenses every month. What should i do? can i ask his company for this? and at least to know how much his salary so i will know if his lying to me on that matter coz his always telling me his salary is only that much, 4 years in one company i dont think he will not have any increase.
thank you so much, anticipating your immediate response..
hi, can we talk also, I think we had a similar case
atty , my ex husband is in dubai together with her wife and 2kids …im married with him 1999 and i dont why they are freely together with his new family our daugther is 16years old already we want to insist my daugthers rigths to have a support because he abandoned my daugther …my daugther always try to contact him several times to give her atleast for her tuition fee how can i reach the father of my daugther …..please let me know and thank u.
If the woman conceive without marriage with the father of his son. Can she get financial support by the father of his son? They use to work at the same company in UAE. they both came from different countries. she went back home when she found out she’s pregnant. while the father of his son are still working there.she use to get financial support but he stop over a year now.
The father of the child currently working there.
The mother of the child is humbly ask for support because she can get a work due to her health condition.
If both child parents are Muslim, father is rich but never paid child support since birth of child.
mother raised the child to adulthood in the USA, can she still collect past due child support from the rich dad living in UAE.
I read that under sharia law the caregiver right to child support does not go away with time.
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