“My darling Chris,

Should you become pregnant even unexpectedly, I should have no regret, because I love you and you love me.

Let us rejoice a common responsibility – you and I shall take care of it and let him/her see the light of this beautiful world.

We know what to do to protect our honor and integrity.

Just relax and be happy, if true.

With all my love,

Ninoy”

The letters, sent by a man to his “secret” girlfriend, one of which is quoted above, are one of the pieces of evidence presented to prove that the child was sired by the man who used an alias “Ninoy”.

Ninoy was then the mayor of a town in Catanduanes. The woman, Chris, a young lass, was his office clerk.

According to Chris, Ninoy made advances to her in a motel, sometime in December 1986, which, with all the promises of promotion, she eventually succumbed to his sexual advances.

A month after, Chris learned that she was pregnant.

They tried to hide the pregnancy. Ninoy gave Chris money to go to Manila and tell her parents that she will be enrolling in a CPA review class. While in Manila, Ninoy kept sending Chris money and even visited her in Manila.

There are no secrets that time does not reveal. Not long after, Chris’ parents learned about her pregnancy just months after. Her father fetched her and brought her back to Catanduanes.

Chris gave birth in September 1987.

Now, Chris and her parents filed a case of Damages and Support.

During the proceeding, the issue of filiation was brought up to which Ninoy objected arguing that the issue of filiation should be resolve in a separate action and not collaterally.

The Supreme Court ruled that although the Complaint filed by Chris was captioned as “Damages coupled with Support Pendente Lite“, the allegations in the complaint, however, established clearly a case of recognition of paternity.

“In determining the nature of an action, it is not the caption, but the averments in the petition and the character of the relief sought, that are controlling.”

– explained the Court.

Read [CASE BrieF NO. 2007-0541] Teofisto I. Verceles vs. Maria Clarissa Posada, in her own behalf, and as mother of minor Verna Aiza Posada, Constantino Posada and Francisca PosadaRead

Stare Decisis