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Performance of illegal marriage ceremony, A352 Revised Penal Code

Performance of illegal marriage ceremony – refers to the act of solemnizing an illegal marriage.

1. Concept

Performance of illegal marriage ceremony – refers to the act of solemnizing an illegal marriage.

a. Legal basis

Article 352. Performance of illegal marriage ceremony. - Priests or ministers of any religious denomination or sect, or civil authorities who shall perform or authorize any illegal marriage ceremony shall be punished in accordance with the provisions of the Marriage Law.

(Revised Penal Code)

b. Modes of commission

The following are the modes of committing the offense:

1) Performance of an illegal marriage

2. Mode 1: Solemnizing or authorizing

Elements of the offense of performing an illegal marriage:

1) Authority of the solemnizing officer; and

2) His performance of an illegal marriage ceremony. (Ronulo v. People, G.R. No. 182438, July 2, 2014, Per Brion, J.)

a. Element 1: Authority of solemnizing officer

The solemnizing officer must have authority to solemnize a marriage. Thus, all those who do not have authority to solemnize a marriage are not covered by this section, including any priest, rabbi, imam, or minister of any church who are not duly authorized to solemnize marriages.

To be clear, the Article 7 of Family Code requires that solemnizing officers be “duly authorized by [their] church or religious sect” and that they be “registered with the civil registrar general” and they are “acting within the limits of...

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