Civil Law

Republic vs. CA, Molina G.R. No. 108763 February 13, 1997 Psychological Incapacity


Roridel O. Molina filed a petition for declaration of nullity of her marriage to Reynaldo Molina. The petition alleged that after a year of marriage, Reynaldo showed signs of “immaturity and irresponsibility” as a husband and a father since he preferred to spend more time with his peers and friends on whom he squandered his money and that he depended on his parents for aid and assistance, and was never honest with his wife in regard to their finances, resulting in frequent quarrels between them.


Whether or not “opposing and conflicting personalities” is equivalent to psychological incapacity.




In Leouel Santos vs. Court of Appeals this Court, speaking thru Mr. Justice Jose C. Vitug, ruled that “psychological incapacity should refer to no less than a mental (nor physical) incapacity . . . and that (t)here is hardly any doubt that the intendment of the law has been to confine the meaning of ‘psychological incapacity’ to the most serious cases of personality disorders clearly demonstrative of an utter insensitivity or inability to give meaning and significance to the marriage. This psychologic condition must exist at the time the marriage is celebrated.” Citing Dr. Gerardo Veloso, a former presiding judge of the Metropolitan Marriage Tribunal of the Catholic Archdiocese of Manila, Justice Vitug wrote that “the psychological incapacity must be characterized by (a) gravity, (b) juridical antecedence, and (c) incurability.”

On the other hand, in the present case, there is no clear showing to us that the psychological defect spoken of is an incapacity. It appears to us to be more of a “difficulty,” if not outright “refusal” or “neglect” in the performance of some marital obligations. Mere showing of “irreconciliable differences” and “conflicting personalities” in no wise constitutes psychological incapacity. It is not enough to prove that the parties failed to meet their responsibilities and duties as married persons; it is essential that they must be shown to be incapable of doing so, due to some psychological (nor physical) illness.

The evidence adduced by respondent merely showed that she and her husband could nor get along with each other. There had been no showing of the gravity of the problem; neither its juridical antecedence nor its incurability.


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