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    Date: 2023-09-18 12:45:46.375256


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    Date: 2023-09-26 09:45:50.502752


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PSA Philippines Statistics Authority

Requested from PAO by R. Boctoto at 12:45 PM on Sep 18, 2023.
Purpose: To change my mother's maiden name
Date of Coverage: 09/18/2023 - 09/18/2023
Tracking no: #PAO-317877756678

Boctoto 12:45 PM, Sep 18, 2023

Hi I would like to know the process and requirements for the change of surname of my mother's maiden name.

1. Her name from Birth is Graciosa Socorro Mercado Raymundo
2. All her maiden names in school documents, marriage certificate, and valid ID is Graciosa Mercado Dela Cruz. (Because she didn't know she had a different Father, she  thought her father was Dela Cruz and her mother didn't inform her of this fact.)

We would like to know how to remove Socorro and change Raymundo into Dela Cruz since all her children's Middle name is Dela Cruz.

PAO 09:45 AM, Sep 26, 2023

September 26, 2023

Dear Rejoice,

Thank you for your request dated Sep 18, 2023 under Executive Order No. 2 (s. 2016) on Freedom of Information in the Executive Branch, for PSA Philippines Statistics Authority.

We received your request on Sep 18, 2023 and will respond on or before Oct 09, 2023 12:45:46 PM, in accordance with the Executive Order's implementing rules and regulations.

Should you have any questions regarding your request, kindly contact me using the reply function on the eFOI portal at, for request with ticket number #PAO-317877756678.

Thank you.


FOI Officer

PAO 02:23 PM, Sep 26, 2023

September 26, 2023

Dear Rejoice Boctoto,


Thank you for your request dated Sep 18, 2023 12:45:46 PM under Executive Order No. 2 (s. 2016) on Freedom of Information in the Executive Branch.

Your Request

You asked for PSA Philippines Statistics Authority.

Please be informed that, the mandate of the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) is “to represent, free of charge, indigents, and other persons qualified for legal assistance in all civil, criminal, labor, administrative and other quasi-judicial cases where, after due evaluation, it is determined that the interest of justice will be served thereby.” 

We advise you to immediately and personally consult with a private lawyer so that your situation can be discussed in more detail. If you are unable to afford a private lawyer, our Office may help you provided that you qualify for our free legal services.

The qualifications before an applicant may be accepted as a client of PAO are the Indigency and Merit Tests as provided for by Republic Act No. 9406, or the PAO Law, in relation to 2021 Revised PAO Operations Manual.

Under the Indigency Test, the applicant must show that his/her individual net income does not exceed the following:

“1. If residing in cities or municipalities within the National Capital Region (NCR), persons whose individual net income does not exceed Twenty-four Thousand Pesos (₱24,000.00) a month;

2. If residing in other cities outside the NCR, persons whose individual net income does not exceed Twenty-two Thousand Pesos (₱22,000.00) a month; and

 3. If residing in municipalities outside the NCR, persons whose individual net income does not exceed Twenty Thousand Pesos (₱20,000.00) a month.”

The term “income” shall not include the pension received by retirees.

The term “net income” as herein employed, shall be understood to refer to the basic income of the litigant less statutory and authorized deductions.

“Statutory deductions” shall refer to withholding taxes, Government Services Insurance System (GSIS), Social Security System (SSS), PAG-IBIG, Health Insurance and PhilHealth premiums, loan amortizations, and other deductions of similar nature, duly supported by written contracts.  

“Authorized deductions” shall be understood to include all deductions as reflected in the pay slip, as well as other deductions with the expressed written consent of the employee and in agreement with the employer, and all other deductions that can be substantiated by the employee.

In case the client derives income from activities and transactions where no employer-employee relationship exists, net income shall refer to gross income less allowable deductions as defined under Sections 32 and 34 of the National Internal Revenue Code and related issuances.

          For purposes of this Section, ownership of land shall not, per se, constitute a ground for disqualification of an applicant for free legal assistance, in view of the ruling in Juan Enaje vs. Victorio Ramos, et al. (G.R. No. L-22109, January 30, 1970) that the determinative factor for indigency is the income of the litigant and not his ownership of real property.”   

To ensure that only those qualified shall be extended free regular representation in court and quasi-judicial bodies, and to aid in determining the nature of the deductions, the applicant shall be required to execute an Affidavit of lndigency, and submit any of the following documents:

1)	Latest Income Tax Return or pay slip, or other proofs of net income; or,

2)	Certificate of Indigency from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), or the City/Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office having jurisdiction over the residence of the applicant; or,

3)	Certificate of Indigency and/or No Income from the Office of the Punong Barangay/Barangay Chairperson having jurisdiction over the residence of the applicant.

Public Attorneys and personnel shall exercise prudence in ascertaining the indigency qualification of an applicant to avoid any suspicion of assisting disqualified clients.

Under the Merit Test, “a case shall be considered meritorious if an assessment of the law and evidence on hand discloses that the legal services of the PAO will assist, or be in aid of or in the furtherance of justice, taking into consideration the interests of the party and those of society.” 

If you are qualified for our free legal services in accordance with the above-mentioned requirements, you or your representative may visit our district office nearest your residence, which is usually located in the Hall of Justice of every city or municipality. Kindly bring with you the documents pertinent to your problem and proof of your indigency
You may also call our Office using the following numbers: (02) 8929-9436, (02) 84262801, (02) 84262450, or (02) 84262987.

Your FOI request is approved. 

Your right to request a review

If you are unhappy with this response to your FOI request, you may ask us to carry out an internal review of the response by writing to Your review request should explain why you are dissatisfied with this response, and should be made within 15 calendar days from the date when you received this letter. We will complete the review and tell you the result within 30 calendar days from the date when we receive your review request.

If you are not satisfied with the result of the review, you then have the right to appeal to the Office of the President under Administrative Order No. 22 (s. 2011).

Thank you.


FOI Receiving Officer

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