Under Articles 184 and 185 of Executive Order (E.O.) No. 209, otherwise known as “The Family Code of the Philippines”, private respondents spouses Clouse are clearly barred from adopting Solomon Joseph Alcala.
Article 184, paragraph (3) of Executive Order No. 209 expressly enumerates the persons who are not qualified to adopt, viz.:
(3) An alien, except:
(a) A former Filipino citizen who seeks to adopt a relative by consanguinity;
(b) One who seeks to adopt the legitimate child of his or her Filipino spouse; or
(c) One who is married to a Filipino citizen and seeks to adopt jointly with his or her spouse a relative by consanguinity of the latter.
Aliens not included in the foregoing exceptions may adopt Filipino children in accordance with the rules on inter-country adoption as may be provided by law.
There can be no question that private respondent Alvin A. Clouse is not qualified to adopt Solomon Joseph Alcala under any of the exceptional cases in the aforequoted provision. In the first place, he is not a former Filipino citizen but a natural born citizen of the United States of America. In the second place, Solomon Joseph Alcala is neither his relative by consanguinity nor the legitimate child of his spouse. In the third place, when private respondents spouses Clouse jointly filed the petition to adopt Solomon Joseph Alcala on February 21, 1990, private respondent Evelyn A. Clouse was no longer a Filipino citizen. She lost her Filipino citizenship when she was naturalized as a citizen of the United States in 1988.
Private respondent Evelyn A. Clouse, on the other hand, may appear to qualify pursuant to paragraph 3(a) of Article 184 of E.O. 209. She was a former Filipino citizen. She sought to adopt her younger brother. Unfortunately, the petition for adoption cannot be granted in her favor alone without violating Article 185 which mandates a joint adoption by the husband and wife. It reads:
Article 185. Husband and wife must jointly adopt, except in the following cases:
(1) When one spouse seeks to adopt his own illegitimate child; or
(2) When one spouse seeks to adopt the legitimate child of the other.
Article 185 requires a joint adoption by the husband and wife, a condition that must be read along together with Article 184.