Case Digest: Dolina vs. Vallecera

G.R. No. 182367: December 15, 2010

CHERRYL B. DOLINA, Petitioner v. GLENN D. VALLECERA, Respondent.



In February 2008 Dolina filed a petition with prayer for the issuance of a temporary protection order against Vallecera before the RTC of Tacloban City for alleged woman and child abuse under RA 9262. In filling out the blanks in the pro-forma complaint, Dolina Added a handwritten prayer for financial support from Vallecera for their supposed child. Vallecera opposed the petition. He claimed that Dolinas petition was essentially one for financial support rather than for protection against woman and child abuses; that he was not the childs father; that the signature appearing on the child's Certificate of Live Birth is not his; that the petition is a harassment suit intended to force him to acknowledge the child as his and give it financial support; and that Vallecera has never lived nor has been living with Dolina, rendering unnecessary the issuance of a protection order against him.

On March 13, 2008 the RTC dismissed the petition after hearing since no prior judgment exists establishing the filiation of Dolinasson and granting him the right to support as basis for an order to compel the giving of such support. Dolina filed a motion for reconsideration but the RTC denied with an admonition that she first file a petition for compulsory recognition of her child as a prerequisite for support. Unsatisfied, Dolina filed the present petition for review directly with this Court.


Whether or not the RTC correctly dismissed Dolinas action for temporary protection and denied her application for temporary support for her child.



Dolina evidently filed the wrong action to obtain support for her child. The object of R.A. 9262 under which she filed the case is the protection and safety of women and children who are victims of abuse or violence. Although the issuance of a protection order against the respondent in the case can include the grant of legal support for the wife and the child, this assumes that both are entitled to a protection order and to legal support.

To be entitled to legal support, petitioner must, in proper action, first establish the filiation of the child, if the same is not admitted or acknowledged. Since Dolinas demand for support for her son is based on her claim that he is Vallecera's illegitimate child, the latter is not entitled to such support if he had not acknowledged him, until Dolina shall have proved his relation to him. The childs remedy is to file through her mother a judicial action against Vallecera for compulsory recognition. If filiation is beyond question, support follows as matter of obligation. In short, illegitimate children are entitled to support and successional rights but their filiation must be duly proved.

Dolina's remedy is to file for the benefit of her child an action against Vallecera for compulsory recognition in order to establish filiation and then demand support. Alternatively, she may directly file an action for support, where the issue of compulsory recognition may be integrated and resolved.