In an earlier post on this site, we discussed fraudulent schemes online regarding annulment. It has been several years since and we felt that it was about time we updated the post in light of recent developments online and in the practice of law in the Philippines. This will be the start of a series on this particular topic.
The choice of an attorney is a highly personal one that may come right down to how you feel about a prospective attorney, but here are some tips:
- STAY AWAY FROM LAWYERS WHO SAY THAT THEY WIN ALL THEIR CASES 100%.
The best and most experienced lawyers are those who have toiled through the years in their chosen profession. They are the best because they have proven themselves in their respective fields. Litigation , for instance, involves many personalities and factors that go into whether or not a particular case is successful. A lawyer does not decide a case. Only a judge can do that. So if a lawyer tells you that he wins all his cases, it can mean only:1) He has very little experience and has handled only a few cases that he probably all won. But would you hire him ?; 2) He is really not a lawyer but a fixer because he can control what the judge will decide;3) Or maybe he is really a lawyer , but in violation of his oath. Canon 13 of the Philippine Code of Professional Responsibility states that “CANON 13 – A LAWYER SHALL RELY UPON THE MERITS OF HIS CAUSE AND REFRAIN FROM ANY IMPROPRIETY WHICH TENDS TO INFLUENCE, OR GIVES THE APPEARANCE OF INFLUENCING THE COURT.”
2. STAY AWAY FROM LAWYERS OR THOSE PRETENDING TO BE LAWYERS WHO SAY THAT THEY CAN GET YOUR MARRIAGE ANNULLED WITHIN A SPECIFIC PERIOD OF TIME OR WORSE, ON A PARTICULAR DATE.
Many factors go into the handling of a case. In particular, an annulment case involves not only the parties and their respective attorneys but the judge, the court personnel, the Public Prosecutor, and the Office of the Solicitor General, not to mention the witnesses of the parties. It is impossible to synchronize the schedules of everybody and fix the time when the decision in your case will be rendered by the judge.
3. DO NOT BELIEVE A LAWYER OR THOSE PRETENDING TO BE LAWYERS WHO SAY THAT YOU CAN GET AN ANNULMENT OF YOUR MARRIAGE WITHOUT BEING REQUIRED TO APPEAR IN COURT.
I have seen suspicious advertisements in the Classified Ads sections of some newspapers and online purportedly on lawyer’s websites which flaunt that they can get an annulment without the client ever appearing in court or testifying on his or her own behalf. This is illegal because no judge who observes the proper judicial ethics would grant an annulment without getting the testimony of the petitioner who has to prove the psychological incapacity of his or her spouse during the marriage. The expert psychologist and the other witnesses, are at best supporting evidence. Nothing could be better than the testimony of the person who suffered through that marriage which is sought to be nullified.