Should divorce be easier in China and what is the divorce rate in China? If more people are wanting to get divorced, why is it so hard?
In recent years, it seems more Chinese people are getting divorced. This is likely because there is less stigma around divorce than there used to be. In Canada, couples have to wait a year before they can get divorced.
They need to separate, and then not get back together for 12 months.
Many people ask our divorce lawyers, you must not ever want to get married. This is not true. Separation lawyers see a lot of drama, but they also see a lot of good things happen.
For example, there was one man that wanted to divorce because he got in a car accident. He was now not able to have children, and he wanted to divorce his wife. Why?
Because she had always wanted to have a child. When the wife found out that he was speaking to us about divorce, she told him she will stay with him forever. She doesn’t care what happened, she loves him.
She refused to divorce him, which is possible in China, but not in places like Canada or the United States. This is a beautiful situation, and it makes us believe in love.
See the graphs in this article. It’s hard to find accurate statistics on how many people get divorced in China.
Divorce Process In China And The Divorce Rate In China
China’s family laws were created in 2003. The new laws made divorce much easier in China. In 2003, 1,300,000 people got divorced. Now around 4,500,000 people per year in China get divorced.
Should divorce be easier? I think that’s the wrong question. The real important thing is that people know who they are, and what they want before they get married.
The problem with divorce and marriage isn’t that the court process is too easy or hard.
Instead, couples should take some simple steps to better prepare themselves for marriage. For example, they should have done things like travel together. Travelling together can be stressful at times.
It requires a lot of planning and logistics. What else can couples do before they get married?
They should have lived together for at least a year. Waiting to live together until after marriage is a horrible idea. What happens if you start arguing right after you move in? That is to be expected.
But it should get better over time. After six months, you should not be fighting over things like the dishes, trash, or who’s turn it is to cook dinner.
Prenup Contract In China
The last thing you should do is an insurance policy. It’s commonly known as a marriage contract or a prenup. You can still do it even if you are already married. If you are already married, it’s called a postnuptial agreement.
This simply means that you were already married when you signed it. It’s the same agreement.
The contracts are also very similar to a divorce contract in what it includes. However, when you sign a prenup, you have no plans to ever get divorced. You must have heard by now that half of all marriage ends in divorce.
This didn’t use to be true in China, but divorce is quickly growing in Asian countries. Divorce is now more socially acceptable and is therefore much easier to do.
Better yet, people that are divorced are able to get remarried to someone they are better suited for. Not everyone can pick the right person on their first attempt.
There are so many people in China, how do you know this is the right person?
Chinese Divorce Law
Don’t get us wrong, you should get married. But have the marriage contract signed just in case. If you are part of the 50% of people that do not get a divorce, great!
When you turn 65 years old together, and you are still happily married, or at least, still married, you can cut up the divorce contract.
It’s like getting house insurance (if you don’t need to, but you still do it.) You don’t get the insurance because you plan on your house burning down. Of course, you hope this never happens.
But if it does happen, your life isn’t destroyed. You are not going to have to spend $400,000 on building a new house. The insurance company will pay for you. But keep in mind, that house fires are rare, and divorce is common.
Should divorce be easier in China and is the divorce rate too high? We don’t know. Right now it can be simple, or it can be complex. Divorce can get nasty.
Divorce China Foreigner
If you are a foreigner in China, and you need help with a divorce, contact us. We have English-speaking lawyers that can help you.
Someone from another country who is married to a Chinese citizen either in China or another country can get a divorce in China. It doesn’t matter if you are currently living in China or not.
Many people know a friend that got divorced. Many people think about divorce for a long time before they actually do it. So why are so many more Chinese people getting divorced? Is it because it’s easier these days?
The divorce rate in China is now much higher than before.
According to the National Bureau Of Statistics of China, in the 1980s, only around 500,000 people were getting divorced each year. The divorce rate has gone up 7x.
Common Reasons For Chinese Divorce
Some reasons that people get divorced are violence, financial problems, and cheating. Sometimes parties just grow apart and want to start over. Most people don’t want to stay in a loveless relationship.
I would say that the main reason for divorce is that the marriage simply falls apart. 77% percent of people said they divorced for this reason. However, that might not be true.
They simply might not want to report to the government and their friends that they are having financial problems or that someone cheated. 14% of people said they got divorced because there was violence at home.
Almost no one reports that they got divorced because of cheating.
One in four of the men said that their wife had cheated on them. Men are more likely to divorce their wives for cheating. Wang Baoquang, an actor in China, got divorced because his wife cheated on him.
They have two children. They ended up in an expensive divorce with lawsuits over defamation. This divorce case happened in the Beijing court.
Wang Baoquang spoke openly about being cheated on. That is not common in Chinese culture. There was a study that said that women cheat when they are fighting with their husbands.
This might be some sort of revenge, or to feel wanted again.
The same survey said that men can cheat at any time.
Divorce In China Culture
Are you interested in learning more about divorce in China culture? It has certainly changed a lot over the years. In the past, divorce was seen as one of the worse things you could do.
If you were divorced, it was very unlikely that anyone would ever date you again. You were seen as someone who was tainted, unworthy at another chance at love. This was especially true for women.
Women were to do everything they could to not get divorced, even if it meant staying married to someone who is cheating on them.
Times have changed. People are more open-minded to divorce these days. Some say that it’s rare that people get anything right on the first try. The Chinese divorce rate has increased 10x in the last 30 years.
More Chinese are now open to being single and enjoying life. Many Chinese are also getting married much later in life.
Chinese Marriage And Divorce
If they have children or property, they must sign a separation agreement before the courts will approve the divorce.
I have some western friends in China who got married way too quickly.
They met a cute Chinese girl at a bar and instantly wanted to marry her. My guess is that it was probably more lust than love.
As the CEO of a divorce company that has clients in China and Canada, I see more divorces than most people.
Annie Yi and Taiwanese singer Harlem Yu divorced after 9 years of marriage.
Marriage Is Not A Short Term Thing
Some of my friends are still married, others got divorced after a few months or years.
There must be serious consequences for getting divorced. Otherwise, people will just get married for fun.
Having fun is for being single, or dating, it’s not marriage.
Marriage is a commitment to take care of someone in sickness and in health. It’s not something you try out for a few months.
Vladimir Putin got divorced. It’s more common than you think.
Divorce In China Culture
One way to make divorce less complicated is to try and not get divorced in the first place.
Before filing for divorce, couples should try mediation. In Canada, mediation is normally done by a professionally trained lawyer.
In China, most mediation is done by a mutual friend or a family member. One of the spouses will ask a friend to speak to their spouse. The goal is to see if the friend can fix things for the couple.
This is unfair to the friend. The friend will be put in a stressful situation where they must try and save their friend’s marriage. They will also run the risk of getting involved in the drama.
It is best to hire a family law consultant or lawyer to deal with your marriage. You can tell your legal advisor you want to try and stay married.
Zhang Yuqi and film director Wang Quan’an divorced after 4 years of marriage.
One big difference between divorce in the west and China is no-fault divorce. In Canada, it doesn’t matter why you want to get divorced. If you are not happy, you can still get divorced.
In China, it’s much harder. You will have to prove that your spouse did something bad and that because of this you should be entitled to a divorce.
You will have to convince a judge by using evidence. Perhaps you will show pictures or Wechat messages to the court.
If your spouse cheated on you, then the court will likely approve your divorce.
If your spouse did something really bad in China, like starting a new family outside of the marriage, then the courts might award all the property to you.
When the couple is just having a dispute, the court might tell them to go speak to a family psychologist instead.
In China, many people stay married until their child turns 18. The parents wait until the child leaves for University.
Divorce In China Culture
For this reason, there are many fewer child custody battles in China. Once a child turns 18, there is no custody to fight over.
In Canada, someone might divorce when their child is only 8 years old. That means that there are still 10 years of parental responsibility left.
People are willing to spend money on child custody battles if they might not get to see their child for ten years if they lose the family law lawsuit.
Divorce can get nasty, with businesses being sold.
Is There Alimony In China?
Spousal support, also known as alimony, is also not common in China. However, in western countries, the spouse that makes more money might have to pay a monthly amount to their ex-spouse for many years.
Family law is changing in China, and I would not be surprised if divorce gets more complicated as things like alimony are added to Chinese law. Divorce is unlikely to ever get more simple.
Should divorce be easier in China? We don’t make the rules, but we can help you with them!
What Is A Separation Agreement And Divorce Contract?
A separation agreement, or divorce contract, is often the least expensive way to deal with a divorce.
You have two options for dealing with a separation. You can either come to an agreement with your spouse or let a judge decide.
The separation agreement can also be called a divorce settlement agreement, or divorce contract.
When the parties want to sign something but want to stay married, it’s called a post-marriage agreement.
You sign the divorce contract before you file for divorce in the courts. This prevents the need to go to court and saves you time, stress, and money.
If you are separated and getting along with your spouse, right now is the time to do the divorce agreement.
You and your spouse might be fighting over something new next month. You need both spouses to sign the divorce contract.
If one or both are angry, it rarely happens.
If you need a lawyer in China or Canada, we have them available. We also have paralegals who can do most of the work, and save you money.
Divorce Settlement Agreement
If you need to hire to go to the family law court, it’s a lot more expensive. Going to court is not a simple task.
Most people see TV shows where the court case goes on for about 5 minutes. In reality, you will likely have to deal with the courts for many months.
Do not get legal advice from TV shows or from friends. You need to speak to a family lawyer.
We have family lawyers in Beijing, Shanghai, British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario.
In China, it might be possible for you to work with one of our family law consultants. In Canada, that is illegal.
You must hire a lawyer to deal with your issue. Families, friends, and consultants are not allowed to provide you with legal advice.
Dividing Property And Assets In China
If you are located in China, we will connect you to a lawyer there. The separation agreement often covers spousal support, child support, child custody, and property division.
The more legal issues you need to agree on, the more likely you will need to go to a family law court.
However, it’s not a waste of money to try the separation agreement before going to court. Let’s say you have three legal issues.
You have a property in Shanghai and Toronto. You also have two kids and you make more money than your spouse.
Let’s say you can agree on who will get custody of the children and you agree to make a payment to your spouse.
You put this information into the separation agreement and sign. You cannot agree on the properties. It will only be needed to go to court to argue over the properties.
Divorce In China and Independent Legal Advice
When creating a contract, the other spouse must have legal advice. A lawyer cannot represent both spouses.
If there is no independent legal advice, the agreement will likely be thrown out by a judge.
ILA is not expensive, so make sure you or your spouse receive it before signing the contract.
In order for a contract to be valid, there also must be legal consideration.
This means that a contract that is completely one-sided will likely be thrown out by a judge.
You need to make sure the agreement is fair for you and your spouse. Most important are any children you have.
A court will always make decisions that are best for the children.
A judge doesn’t care how much money you want as much as they care about what is best for a child.
Issues Regarding The Child Must Be Approved By A Judge
You can agree to issues for the child in the separation agreement. However, the court will still have to approve them.
You can attach a copy of your signed separation agreement with your divorce papers and file it with the courts.
This will show the judge what you want to have to happen with the children. However, the judge must approve.
The costs of the separation agreements will vary depending on your situation. There is no set price for the entire legal industry.
It’s best to reach out to us today to get a quote.
If you need a divorce lawyer in Beijing, Shanghai, or any of the other major cities in China, let us know. We will connect you with one.
If you have a property in Canada, you will need to hire a lawyer in Canada. A lawyer in China cannot practice Canadian law.
We have lawyers in both countries.
When someone goes through a divorce and makes more money than the other spouse, they often have to pay money to the other spouse.
We can help you calculate the amount of money that you should pay or should be paid.
We Are The Legal Bridge Between Canada And China
Clearway was designed to help Chinese people find a lawyer easier. Also, we educate Chinese people on the benefits of hiring a law firm.
The legal industry is new in China. Therefore, most people don’t know why and how to hire a lawyer.
In the past, most people would ask their friends for legal advice.
In most cases, their lawyer was not a lawyer. The friend would then search on Baidu or WeChat to try and find the answer for their friend.
Of course, the information they quickly found could have been wrong.
China is becoming more modern. It is time for Chinese people to hire a lawyer and get professional legal advice.
Using Information And Software To Create The Separation Agreement
You have worked hard to build your family and wealth. Don’t lose your money, property, and family because you want to ignore your problems.
Ignoring problems does not make things better. Deal with your problems with professional advice from a law firm.
Contact us today so that you can get proper legal advice from our family law team.
Let us know in detail what your family law issues are. The more useful information you give us, the better we can assist you.
If you have children or property, you will need to get a separation agreement.
The courts will not approve your divorce papers before you deal with these issues in a separation agreement.
Divorce In China – Dividing Assets And Debts In China
Banks will also want to see a separation agreement before they change your mortgage and property title.
They will want to see that you and your spouse have agreed on all the issues.
The banks do not want to get involved in divorce court battles. They will also want to see that you had the contract professionally drafted.
They will not accept an agreement that you downloaded on the internet.
If you started your own contract, you can hire a lawyer to finish the divorce agreement for you.
You can sign the separation agreement at any time. In Canada, you need to wait a year after being separated to get approved by the courts for a divorce.
However, you can sign the separation agreement at any time.
Create A Legally Binding Separation Agreement
We recommend doing the separation agreement as soon as possible. If you and your spouse are still talking, it’s a good time.
You never know if you and your spouse will be arguing in a few months. Many there will be some jealously if one of you starts dating someone else.
Now because of jealousy, your spouse or you won’t want to sign the agreement anymore.
Now you need to spend a lot of money on a law firm to speak to a family law judge.
The main things that go into the agreement are spousal support, debts, properties, child custody, and spousal support payments.
Depending on your situation, there might be additional information.
The cost of the divorce contract or separation agreement will depend on if you can work with a consultant or not.
Either way, the cost of a separation agreement can be between 4500 ¥ to 15,000 ¥. The cost will depend on how complicated your matter is.
Speak to us to get a quote.
Author: Alistair Vigier is the CEO of Clearway and can be reached on Wechat at: alistairvigier