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Beijing Legal

When will the Chinese court grant divorce?

Under Chinese Marriage Law, in dealing with a divorce case, the People's Court shall first carry out mediation.

If mediation fails, and the court discovered that mutual affection do not exists any longer between husband and wife, the court will grant divorce. However, the loss of mutual affection is an abstract concept to some extent. Therefore, the law provide some illustrations on what is the loss of mutual affection.

Article 32 of the Chinese Marriage Law provides as follows: In one of the following cases, divorce shall be granted if mediation fails:
(1) where one party commits bigamy or cohabits with another person of the opposite sex;
(2) where one party indulges in family violence or maltreats or abandons family members ;
(3) where one party indulges in the gambling, drug taking, etc. and refuses to reform after repeated persuasion;
(4) where both parties have separated from each other for two full years for lack of mutual affection;
(5) other cases which lead to the shattering of affection between husband and wife.

Based on the above provisions, if the judge finds circumstances which falls into scope of above Protected content in the proceeding, the judge may directly grant divorce.
Without circumstances described by Protected content does not mean the judge will simply reject the divorce. In that case, the judge will have to look into other merits of the case and see whether it is appropriate to grant the divorce.

By David Gao, Chinese lawyer
Tel/Wechat: Protected content

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