G.R. No. 148311, 31 March 2005, 454 SCRA 54


Honorato B. Catindig filed a petition to adopt his minor illegitimate child Stephanie Astorga Garcia. He averred that Stephanie was born on June 26, 1994; that Stephanie had been using her mother’s middle name and surname; and that he is now a widower and qualified to be her adopting parent. He prayed that Stephanie’s middle name be changed to Garcia, her mother’s surname, and that her surname “Garcia” be changed to “Catindig” his surname.

The RTC granted the petition for adoption, and ordered that pursuant to article 189 of the Family Code, the minor shall be known as Stephanie Nathy Catindig.

Honorato filed a motion for classification and/or reconsideration praying that Stephanie be allowed to use the surname of her natural mother (Garcia) as her middle name. The lower court denied petitioner’s motion for reconsideration holding that there is no law or jurisprudence allowing an adopted child to use the surname of his biological mother as his middle name.


Whether or not an illegitimate child acquired all the rights granted by law by virtue of adoption.


Yes. One of the effects of adoption is that the adopted is deemed to be a legitimate child of the adapter for all intents and purposes pursuant to Article 189 of the Family Code and Section 17 of Article V of RA 8557.

Being a legitimate by virtue of her adoption, it follows that Stephanie is entitled to all the rights, provided by law to a legitimate child without discrimination of any kind, including the right to bear the surname of her father and her mother. This is consistent with the intention of the members of the Civil Code and Family Law Committees. In fact, it is a Filipino custom that the initial or surname of the mother should immediately precede the surname of the father.

*Case digest by Karl Bation, LLB-4, Andres Bonifacio Law School, SY 2018-2019