Local January 22, 2023 | 12:07 pm

Citizens will be able to change the order of their surnames when they come of age

Santo Domingo, DR
The new law 4-23, which regulates acts of civil status, allows children to change the order of their surnames when they come of age (age of majority).

“The registrant, upon reaching the age of majority may, for one time only at the time of requesting the identity and electoral card, arrange to change the order of his surnames, to fix his/her personal identity,” states paragraph III of Article 85 of the law.

Regarding the order, the father’s surname is privileged.

Paragraph I of that article states, “in the event that the birth is declared by both parents, the father’s surname shall always prevail in first order.”

“In cases of voluntary recognition of paternity or by judicial decision, arising subsequent to the declaration of the birth of the son or daughter in favor of whom it is recognized, the surname of the father in first order shall always prevail,” states paragraph II of Article 85.

The capital part of this article establishes that “the first surname of the father and the first surname of the mother shall be registered as the surname of the registered person.”

Criteria of the TC

In judgment TC-0127-21, the Constitutional Court considered that it constitutes a discriminatory practice that the father’s surname occupies the first place in the order of the children’s surname because the provisions of Law 659 (repealed) and the Civil Code do not establish it in this way.

Using this sentence, the TC declared a direct action of unconstitutionality inadmissible against article 46 of Law 659 on Acts of Civil Status and article 57 of the Dominican Civil Code, which indicate the information that birth certificates must contain.

And he argued that the questioned texts do not establish an order of surnames but that such a decision has been left to the free will of the parents.

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