The legal obligations of a father to his children were talked about on social media following Paolo Contis‘ recent statements about child support in an interview.
In last Friday’s episode of “Fast Talk With Boy Abunda,” Paolo revealed that he has not been providing financial support to his children with his two ex-partners Lian Pax and LJ Reyes.
The Kapuso actor said that he has “reasons” for this.
“Sustento issue, hindi. I don’t give. Again, I have my reasons why but I’m saving for them. I have some savings for them that hopefully one day I could give to them straight,” Paolo was quoted in a report as saying.
Paolo has two daughters with his estranged wife Lian, namely, Xonia and Xalene. He has his third daughter with LJ named Summer.
Lian’s annulment case against Paolo has yet to be finalized at the court.
In 2021, Paolo made headlines after LJ spoke up about their split. He confirmed his relationship with Yen Santos in January this year.
The open letter
The portion of the interview on Paolo’s relationship with his children was talked about on social media this week.
Content creator Christian “Xian” Gaza later joined in the online discussion. He weighed in on Paolo’s situation, citing that he also fathers a child with a former partner.
“This message is not from a point of hate but from a point of a man na kaparehas mong may dalawang ex na naiwanan ng anak. I understand kung bakit hindi ka nagbibigay ng sustento because you have your personal reasons,” the internet personality wrote.
Regardless of these reasons, however, Gaza pointed out Paolo’s obligations to provide for them.
“Ano yung point na gusto kong tumbukin? Paolo, no matter what issues you have with their moms, kesyo hindi napupunta sa tama yung sustentong ipinapadala mo, obligasyon mo pa ring magpadala ng fixed amount every month para sa araw-araw na gastusin ng mga bata,” he said.
“Kung saan ito gagastusin ni babae eh is not your problem anymore. Labas ka na dun. Diskarte na nila yun. Iniwanan natin sila ng mga anak na papalakihin ng ilang taon at araw-araw aalagaan habang tayo ay nagbubuhay-binata eh that’s the least that we can do for them,” Gaza added.
“Sobrang hirap maging ina jusko! Regular sustento na lang sana,” the letter concluded.
What the law says
Article 194 of the Family Code of the Philippines defines the support that parents are obligated to give to their children, as follows:
“Support comprises everything indispensable for sustenance, dwelling, clothing, medical attendance, education and transportation, in keeping with the financial capacity of the family.”
Education of children also includes “schooling or training for some profession, trade or vocation, even beyond the age of majority.”
Transportation, meanwhile, includes “expenses in going to and from school, or to and from the place of work.”
In Article 195 of the same law, it was stated that these provisions apply to “Parents and their legitimate children and the legitimate and illegitimate children of the latter.”
Failure of a former husband or partner to provide financial support is a criminal offense as stated in RA 9262:the Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children Act of 2004.
It counts as a form of “economic abuse.”
Update on Paolo’s ex-wife
Lian on January 30 shared a post about her recent realizations after attending a fellowship event.
Without mentioning names, the former professional dancer said that she did experience many trials that “broke” her in her past.
“I was moved [by] CCF [Christ’s Commission Fellowship]’s international speaker when he shared that trials tend to make us or break us. As for my own life experience, maraming trials that ‘break me’ but at the end of the day, just one call upon the name of Jesus and he will equip you to make it through!” Lian said in her post.
Some Facebook users perceived that she was alluding to Paolo following his recent televised interview.
Lian is now engaged with John Cabahug. Their family is residing in Cebu.