M a n i l a

PRESIDENTIAL DECREE No. 965 July 20, 1976


WHEREAS, the Government has adopted a national population program to achieve and maintain levels of population most conducive to the national welfare;

WHEREAS, an essential element of the population program is to inform and instruct the people on family planning and responsible parenthood; and

WHEREAS, an effective mode of implementing the program would be to require all applicants for marriage license to receive instructions and information on family planning and responsible parenthood before they are issued the marriage license, and to create the administrative machinery for giving such instructions and information;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, FERDINAND E. MARCOS, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution, do hereby order and decree:

Section 1. Office of Family Planning. There is hereby created in every city and municipality an Office of Family Planning to be headed by the city or municipal health officer. He shall be assisted by the city or rural health nurse, members of the city or rural health unit, and such other personnel from the different agencies of the government involved in the family planning program, who shall perform family planning duties in addition to their regular duties. Private entities or individuals duly accredited by the Commission on Population engaged in family planning activities may also be impressed into the service.

Section 2. Duties of Family Planning Office. The Office of Family planning shall give instructions and information on family and responsible parenthood to applicants for marriage license and other interested persons in the form of personal instruction and/or handbook, pamphlets or brochures. Furthermore, such instructions and information shall be consistent with the policies of the Commission on Population.

Section 3. Certificate of Compliance. Applicants for marriage license shall, upon filing an application therefore, be obliged to receive instructions and information on family planning and responsible parenthood from the Family Planning Office. Such instructions and information may be in the form of personal instruction or in the form of brochures, pamphlets, or handbooks. In places where there are no health officers, any person duly accredited by the Commission on Population may give the instructions herein provided.

No marriage license shall be issued by the Local Civil Registrar unless the applicants present a certificate, issued at no cost to the applicants, by an Office of Family Planning that they had received instructions and information on family planning and responsible parenthood.

If, for any reason, the information or instructions shall not have been given within the period required by law for the issuance of a marriage license, a certification to that effect shall be given to the Civil Registrar by the Office of Family Planning and the former shall withhold the issuance of the marriage license for a period of two weeks to enable the Family Planning Office to give instructions and information and the applicants to receive the same. At the end of such period, when no instructions shall have been given, the Civil Registrar may issue the marriage license.

Section 4. Assistance of National Office. Agencies of the National Government charged with the implementation of the Family Planning program shall render assistance to family planning offices herein created.

Section 5. Penalties. Any member of the Office of Family planning who fails or refuses without just cause to give the instructions and the certificate herein provided: any local Civil Registrar who issues the marriage license without the requisite certification from the Office of Family Planning, or any person who obtains the certificate fraudulently, shall be subject to appropriate administrative or criminal charges.

Section 6. Rules and Regulation. The Commission on Population shall issue rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this Decree.

Section 7. Repeal of Prior Law. All laws and ordinances inconsistent with the provisions of this Decree are hereby repealed or modified accordingly.

Section 8. Effectivity. This Decree shall take effect immediately.

Done in the City of Manila, this 20th day of July, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and seventy-six.

The Lawphil Project - Arellano Law Foundation