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During the author’s 1996 visit in the provinces of Cebu, Leyte, and metropolitan Manila, there was an estimated increase of half a percent and an estimated 340,000 couples in unmarried cohabitation.
The majority of cohabiting couples in the provinces are separated from their legal spouses because divorce is illegal and they cannot be civilly or religiously married.
Marriage is a civil ceremony that is conducted city offices. Arranged marriages have not been part of Filipino life.
However, men are expected to marry and if a man has not married by his late twenties, female relatives begin introducing him to potential brides. Young professionals wait until their late twenties to marry, and engagements of five to seven years are not uncommon.
Reasons for annulment include physical incapacity, physical violence, or pressure to change one's religious or political beliefs. [Source: /=/] In the early 2000s, the tourism Philippines department tried to promote the Philippines as a place for foreigners to come to get married. Thus, cohabitation was relatively rare during the 1940s.