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Does China Have Spousal Support? - CFM 101 Series

Tue, 28 Dec 2021
Contributors: Meng Yu 余萌
Editor: C. J. Observer


The answer is NO. There is no spousal support or Alimony in China.

According to Spousal Support (Alimony) Basics on, when a married couple gets a divorce, the court may award “alimony” or spousal support to one of the former spouses, based either on an agreement between the couple or a decision by the court itself. This is separate from the division of marital property and is decided on a case-by-case basis.

There is no such spousal support in China.

But in China, the wife may get more than 50% of the marital property in some cases (also referred to as ‘unequal division of marital property’). The wife is also more likely to get custody of the child, which makes the ex-husband has to pay for the child support.

1. Unequal division of marital property

In case of divorce, the joint property of the husband and wife shall be divided according to the agreement.

If the two parties cannot reach an agreement, the court decides how to divide the marital property.

As a general principle, the marital property will be divided equally between the spouses.

However, the court may, subject to its discretion, allocate a slightly larger proportion of the property to, among others, the party who raised children after divorce, and the party who was not at fault for the divorce.

In most cases where this principle is applied, the wife was granted more than 50% of the marital property.

2. Child support

After divorce, if a parent has physical custody of his child, the other parent shall pay for the child support in part or in whole.

The amount and duration of such payment shall be determined by parents through agreement. If no such agreement is reached, the court can decide the amount and duration in a judgment.

If the parent should pay for the child support, then the support paid each month should generally not exceed 20-30% of his monthly income. If he/she has to pay for two or more children’s support, the proportion can be increased appropriately, but generally, it should not exceed 50% of his/her total monthly income.


The Cross-border Family Matters 101 Series (‘CFM 101 Series’) provides an introduction to China-related cross-border family matters (marriage and succession), and covers the knowledge essential to cross-border family matter management.


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Photo by Zichao Zhang on Unsplash

Contributors: Meng Yu 余萌

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