MANILA, Philippines – Senators approved a bill that would provide certificates of live birth, death, and marriage issued or lawfully validated by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), local civil registers, and reports from the Philippines foreign service postings with permanent validity.
Senators adopted Senate Bill (SB) No. 2450 on the third and final reading on Monday, May 23, voting 21-0-0, the day the chamber resumed session following a three-month recess for the 2022 elections.
The bill on the lifelong validity of birth, death, and marriage certificates is one step closer to becoming law, thanks to Senate approval. The House of Representatives passed its version of the measure in June 2021.
Under SB 2450, certificates of live birth, death, and marriage issued signed, certified, or authenticated by the PSA and its predecessor the National Statistics Office, and local civil registries would have permanent validity regardless of the date of issuance. The same would be applied to certificates issued by Philippine foreign service posts.
The document, however, must be intact and readable, and its authenticity and security features must be visible.
The permanent validity of marriage certificates would also only be applicable where the marriage has not been judicially decreed annulled or declared void ab initio under the Family Code of the Philippines or any subsequent amendatory law on marriage.
What if the texts on the certificates have become unreadable or an administration correction or judicial decree has been approved affecting its contents? Then the concerned person must submit a new, amended, or updated certificate.
The PSA previously said that the birth certificates it provides have no expiration dates. However, certain government institutions and commercial companies still demand individuals to submit papers on the most recent security paper, which costs P155 for an authorized copy and another P365 for delivery.
Senator Bong Revilla Jr., chairman of the committee on civil service, government reorganization, and professional regulation, said the bill’s passing will be a tremendous benefit for Filipinos in obtaining birth, death, and marriage certificates.
“As such, they will be recognized and accepted in all government or private transactions. Through this, our people do not have to unnecessarily spend time and money in securing new copies of their documents,” Revilla said.
The bill was co-authored by Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto, and senators Kiko Pangilinan, Win Gatchalian, Joel Villanueva, Sonny Angara, Grace Poe, Cynthia Villar, and Nancy Binay.