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Origin of a child in Indonesia is a procedure to legalize your offspring and you through a strict legal mechanism in order to recognize the child legally. This is the procedures that protected by our 1945 Constitution as imposed on Article 28B (2): "Every child has the right of survival, growth, and development, participating and entitled to protection from violence and discrimination as well as civil rights and freedoms."

The implementation of the constitutional protection for the child is with the Child Protection Law of 2014 stipulates that the child has the right to know its parents. If you were married in a legal and recognized way, the child will not be having difficulties to access its rights under the laws. Nevertheless, if you were not legally married, the child will have problems in recognizing its rights and their access will be denied.

Before we go further in getting to review the offspring origin within Indonesia's legal system, you need to identify the type of child status according to our prevailing laws and regulation, as follows:

Legitimate Child

Article 42 of 1974 Marriage Law stipulates that a legitimate child is a child born within or as a result of a legitimate marriage. A legitimate child can also be born of the results of both spouses actions outside of his wife's womb.

The latter is pretty advanced ruling as this may be interpreted to include babies born using an artificial uterus or womb or even through a surrogate mother. Although, the last one is not considered legal yet according to the health regulation in Indonesia.

I am here not to discuss methods of how babies are born. That's not really my department. I am putting those mechanism just to bring those to your attention that such things exist and what the laws think about it.

Let's carry on!

Child Born Out of Legal Marriage

According to the decision from the Constitutional Court number 46/PUU-VIII/2010 dated 17 February 2012 on the amendment of 1974 Marriage Law especially Article 43 (1) imposed that a child born out of wedlock has civil law relationship with its mother and her family as well as with the alleged man as the father to the extent of the scientific evidence and/or other evidence according to the laws have blood relationship, including civil relationship with his family.

According to the records of the court, the marriage of the parent was not registered or recorded. It means, the marriage was not legal. But previous marriage has been conducted but did not performed legally according to the Marriage. Therefore, the couple did not receive any marriage book or marriage certificate. 

As for the evidence, you need to supply DNA test that shows you are not excluded as the biological father. It must shows 99.99%. Well, you can put as many as "number 9" on the results. It just give you more bonafidity as the alleged father. So, the more "number 9" on the DNA certificate, the better.

Child Born of Adulterous Relationship

The relationship between the woman and the man who got her pregnant is without any marriage. The child has no legal relationship with the father and his family. Its only has relationship with its mother and her family. Therefore, the child is not able to inherit from its father, nor its can inherit to its father.

On the other hand, the man who got its mother pregnant has legal obligation in supporting the child financially, and to facilitate the child to inherit from his own last will.

In the event the woman is in marital relationship with her husband, and the man who got her pregnant claims the child as his, the law imposed that the child belongs to the woman's husband. Unless, if he denies the child. He may file an application to the court to deny the child and declare the child born of its mother's adulterous relationship.

Those three types of child legal status determine your situation and its level of difficulties in working with the legal system. I am not to say that one child may be better than the other. They have every rights to be legally protected, and the protection starts when you are there as their parents to support them, to feed them, to nurture them, to educate them, to teach them to get back on their feet after they felt, and to teach them to stand on their own.

You know, all the things a father would do for his child. 

My name is Asep Wijaya. Thank you for visiting my blogs and reading my posts!

Published in Library

The laws and regulation in Indonesia recognize two (2) types of public and private adoption. Public adoption is applicable in the event, the child was abandoned or neglected by his/her birth family, and raised by a foster care institution managed by the government. The relevant institution in this matter is Ministry of Social Affairs. As for the private adoption, the proceeding takes place between the biological parents and the adopting parents directly. 

Adopting your step child in Indonesia can bring your family close together. You adopt your spouse's child, and legally you are family as if the child was born into your marriage. Your spouse may insist you to do it, but your willingness to do it that keep the marriage intact. You know, things a man do for his wife and his family. 

There are some pointers that you need to be aware of regarding the adoption of your step-child, they are:

Consent Required

Consent is required from the biological parents, both the child's father and mother, if the child was born into a legal marriage. In the event the child was born out of wedlock, the consent from the child's mother is a must. The mother has full authority as vested by the Civil Code as related to the child, including when the alleged father wish to acknowledge the child. The authority of the mother solely comes from the Article 284 of the Civil Code: "No acknowledgment of a natural child is, during the lifetime of the mother, notwithstanding that she may be of Indonesian descent or descended from a similar indigenous group, be accepted, if the mother does not approve the acknowledgment." I am not saying that as the alleged father of the child you don't have any right at all, you do. The Constitutional Court confirmed your rights, but you must willing to go the extra mile in order to do that. 

The Best Interest of the Child

The adoption proceeding that you are conducting is promoting the interests and welfare of the child. You must be able to prove this by supplying information that you are doing everything in your power to provide the child. You need to prove that the aim of the adoption is obtaining the welfare and protection of the child. You need to enter into a declaration that you are willing to be responsible for supporting the child on daily basis.

Habitual Residence

Basically, we pride ourselves with our nationality principle that all the Indonesian men are subject to the Indonesian law, wherever they are. This is the basis from the continental legal system. If you were married to a foreigner, your foreign spouse must use the Indonesian partner's jurisdiction and therefore a choice of forum is applicable. You may choose the jurisdiction of your Indonesian spouse through her/his domicile. This can be seen on his/her ID card. Article 14 of Administration of Population Law certifies that the ID card (so called KTP/Kartu Tanda Penduduk) is the official identity of a resident and is valid within the entire territory of the Republic of Indonesia. So, this is your jurisdiction as well as our laws do not require you to have a habitual residence to perform an adoption of your step-child in Indonesia.

Indonesia is not one of the Common Law countries that imposed you to have a minimum contact by having a residency at least for six (6) months. Nevertheless, you need to further consider about the requirements from your country of origin if they require you to have a residency in Indonesia. You may retrieve a spousal dependent visa in order to meet the requirement imposed on you regarding the habitual residence during the adoption proceeding. 

My name is Asep Wijaya. Thank you for reading!

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