Breaking up is hard to do…and expensive too

Ana P. Santos

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Breaking up is hard to do…and expensive too
[The annulment business] An annulment can cost from over P180,000 to about P300,000. Lawyers' professional fees are a consideration.

(READ: Part 1: The annulment business)

(READ: Part 2: Cotabato court issues spurious annulment documents)

(READ: Part 3: Cavite: Haven for paid-for annulments?)


MANILA, Philippines – Thinking of filing for an annulment? Jeanie Pulido, an annulment lawyer, gives a rundown of the costs involved.

Depending on the arrangement between the lawyer and client, the costs of annulment may be “packaged” to cover various requirements.

Lawyer’s professional fees may differ for annulment cases that are contested and are thus, expected to take a longer time frame to settle. Here’s a guide: 

Filing fee

Basic fee paid to court to file case. Fee applies to cases w/o property or custody issues. If no properties to be divided, percentage of estimated value of total conjugal property will be added to filing fee. Where custody of children is involved, filing fee is P5,250.

Transcript of stenographer’s notes

Minutes of court hearings.

Sheriff’s transportation costs

Delivery of court summons to respondent. There should be at least 3 attempts to personally serve summons to respondent.


Announcement of annulment in newspaper or tabloid is required only if petitioner cannot locate spouse.


Preparation and submission of pleadings to court.


Photocopying of affidavits and petitions for distribution to fiscal, Office of the Solicitor General, and respondent’s lawyers. About 10 copies of each document is required.

Psychologist’s fees

Conduct of psychological test and interview. Preparation of psychological report.

Psychologist’s appearance fee

Fee paid for psychologist to appear and testify in court. If court hearing is cancelled or re-scheduled on the day itself, appearance fee will still be paid.

Lawyer’s fees

Professional fees for handling annulment from filing to release of decision.


TOTAL: P184,250-P299,250


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Ana P. Santos

Ana P. Santos is an investigative journalist who specializes in reporting on the intersections of gender, sexuality, and migrant worker rights.