The Daily Manila Shimbun


`Court of Appeals reverses court decision recognizing Japanese divorce decree

June 2, 2017

  The Court of Appeals has reversed a decision of the Malabon City Regional Trial Court granting the petition of a Filipina judicial recognition of her divorce from Japan. In a decision last April 27 but obtained Friday, the Eighth Division through Associate Justice Pedro Corales granted the appeal of the Office of the Solicitor General seeking to set aside the June 15, 2015 decision and January 22, 2016 order of the Malabon City RTC, Branch 169, recognizing a divorce decree of Japan. “Petitioner Jinkee B. Sagun-Iijima’s petition for judicial recognition/confirmation of foreign divorce decree is denied for lack of sufficient evidence,” the appellate court ruled. Associate Justices Celia Librea-Leagogo and Amy Lazaro-Javier concurred. Court records showed that on August 29, 2014, a report of divorce by agreement between Jinkee and Japanese national Mamoru Iijima was filed before the Head of Miyoshimachi, Iruma-gun, Saitama Prefecture which was accepted as shown by the Certificate of Acceptance duly registered in the Family of Registry of Mamoru. On February 17, 2015, Jinkee told the Malabon court her divorce is recognized under Japanese law. She attached a copy of the Japanese Civil Code on marriage and recognition of divorce in Japanese language and its English translation. The Malabon City court granted the petitioner’s plea. The Solicitor General sought  reconsideration, but the Regional Trial Court denied it, prompting them to bring the case to the appellate court. In its decision, the CA said Jinkee failed “to prove that the divorce decree allows Mamoru to remarry as specifically required in Article 26 of the Family Code and enunciated in the Orbecido case.” “It bears stressing that any declaration as to the validity of the foreign divorce decree can only be made upon Jinkee’s complete submission of evidence proving the divorce decree and the national law of her alien spouse,” the CA said. DMS.