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General Rights and Obligations of Married Person Under P.R.C. Law


f you are going to marry a Chinese lady, you are recommended to know the rights and obligations of married person on China. We are China lawyers handling family law and divorce matters.

Personal rights and obligations:

  • Husband and wife have equal status in the family and are free to use his or her own surname and given name.
  • Either spouse has the freedom to work, to study and to participate in other social activities; neither party may restrict or  interfere with the other party.
  • Both have the duty to comply with birth control law.

Property Related Rights and Obligations

  • All property owned by either husband or wife is marital property is a default rule, unless the claimant can prove otherwise.
  • As a default rule of equitable distribution, marital property is split 50:50 between husband and wife.
  • Unless otherwise provided by written agreement, the property obtained by either husband or wife before the date of marriage is personal property and the other party is not entitled to share.
  • Unless otherwise provided by law or written agreement, any property obtained by either party is marital property that jointly owned by the spouses from the date of marriage.  There are several exceptions, such as gift by either party’s parent.
  • A prenuptial that is written is valid. Spouses may also enter into agreement in the course of marriage setting forth the ownership of property with few exceptions.
  • Most debts incurred by either husband or wife during their marriage burden both, unless creditors know the existence of an agreement between the spouses stipulating separate responsibility for debt.
  • Husband and wife have the obligations to support each other during marriage, while they usually do not have to support each other after divorce.  A spouse is obliged to “assist” the other party to support the other party’s parents.
  • Husband and wife have the right to inherit each other's estate by law.
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I am a licensed China lawyer. Most clients are foreign nationals and companies. China Lawyer Blog have associates in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Guangzhou, Suzhou, Nanjing, Qingdao, Fuzhou, Hainan, Hefei, Wuhan, Xian, Changsha, Xiamen and Hangzhou. Learn More

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This China Lawyer Blog is aiming at providing better knowledge and understanding of Chinese law for foreigners. Should you have any legal issue in China, do not hesitate to contact China Lawyer Blog for consultation. Preliminary consultation is free. Further legal service, however, will be charged in due rate and in due course.

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China Lawyer BLog AuthorPeter Zhu, an experienced China attorney licensed to practice law for more than ten years, the author of this China Lawyer blog, welcomes any enquiry or consultation related to Chinese law.