第五编 婚 姻 家 庭
PART FIVE MARRIAGE & FAMILY
第一章 一 般 规 定
CHAPTER 1 GENERAL PROVISIONS
Article 1040 This Part is for the purpose of regulating civil relations arising out of marriage or
Article 1041. Marriage and the family are protected by the State.
A marriage system based on the free choice of partners, on monogamy and on equality
between men and women shall be applied.
The lawful rights and interests of women, minors, the elderly and the disabled shall be
Article 1042 Marriage upon arbitrary decision by any third party, mercenary marriage and any
other acts of interference in the freedom of marriage shall be prohibited. It is forbidden to extort
money by marriage.
Bigamy is forbidden. Those who have spouses are forbidden to cohabit with others.
Domestic violence is prohibited. Abuse and abandonment of family members are prohibited.
Article 1043 Families shall cultivate good family customs, carry forward family virtues, and
attach importance to the construction of family civilization.
Husband and wife shall be loyal to each other, respect and care for each other; family
members shall respect the old and cherish the young, help each other, and maintain the marriage
and family relationship characterized by equality, harmony and civility.
Article 1044 Adoption shall follow the principle of benefiting the adoptee to the largest extent,
and the lawful rights and interests of both the adoptee and the adopter shall be protected.
It is prohibited to buy or sell minors under the cloak of adoption.
Article 1045 Relatives include spouses, blood relatives and in-laws. (Relevant articles: Articles
Spouse, parents, children, brothers and sisters, paternal grandparents, maternal grandparents,
grandchildren, and maternal grandchildren are close relatives.
Spouses, parents, children and other close relatives living together shall be family members.
第二章 结 婚
CHAPTER 2 MARRIAGE
Article 1046 Marriage shall be based upon the complete willingness of both man and woman.
Coercion by either party against the other party shall be prohibited, and interference by any
organization or individual shall be prohibited.
Article 1047 No marriage may be contracted before the man has reached 22 years of age and
the woman 20 years of age. (Relevant articles: Legislation 1)
Article 1048 It shall be forbidden for people who are lineal relatives by blood or collateral
relatives by blood up to the third degree of kinship to get married.
Article 1049 Both the man and the woman desiring to contract a marriage shall apply in person
to the marriage registration office for marriage registration. If the proposed marriage is found to
conform with the provisions of this Law, the couple shall be allowed to register and issued marriage
certificates. Upon completion of marriage registration, the marriage relationship is established. A
couple shall go through marriage registration if it has not done so.
Article 1050 After a marriage has been registered, the woman may become a member of the
man's family or vice versa, depending on the agreed wishes of the two parties.
Article 1051 The marriage shall be null and void under any of the following circumstances:
1. Bigamy; or
(II) there is the prohibited degree of kinship between the married parties;
(III) under the legal age for marriage.
Article 1052 Where marriage is contracted by coercion, the coerced party may appeal to the
people's court for annulment of marriage.
The petition for revoking the marriage shall be submitted within one year from the date
when the coercion ceases.
Where the party concerned whose personal freedom is illegally restrained, such an appeal for annulment of marriage shall be submitted within one year from the date of the restoration of
the personal freedom.
Article 1053 If one party suffers from a serious illness, the other party shall be informed
truthfully prior to marriage registration; if the other party fails to do so, the other party may request a
people's court to revoke the marriage.
An application for annulment of marriage shall be submitted within one year from the date
on which the grounds for annulment were known or ought to be known.
Article 1054 Invalid or revoked marriages shall have no legal binding force ab initio, and the
parties shall have no rights or obligations of a husband and wife. The property acquired by them
during the period of their cohabitation shall be disposed of by agreement between the parties; if they
fail to reach an agreement, the People's Court shall make a judgment on the principle of giving
consideration to the unerring party. The property acquired through bigamy shall not be disposed of to
prejudice the rights and interests attached to the property of the party under lawful contract of
marriage. With regard to the children born by the party concerned, the provisions of this Law on
parents and children shall apply.
Where the marriage is invalid or revoked, the innocent party shall have the right to claim
Chapter 3 Family Relations
第一节 夫 妻 关 系
Section 1: Matrimonial Relationship
Article 1055. Husband and wife shall have equal status in marriage and the family.
Article 1056 Both husband and wife shall have the right to use his or her own name and title.
Article 1057 Both husband and wife shall have the freedom to engage in production and other
work, to study and to participate in social activities; neither party shall restrict or interfere with the
Article 1058 Both husband and wife shall equally enjoy the right to raise, educate and protect their minor child (children), and shall jointly bear the obligation to raise, educate and protect their
minor child (children).
Article 1059. Husband and wife shall have the duty to maintain each other.
The party in need of maintenance shall have the right to demand maintenance payments
from the other party if that other party fails to perform this obligation.
Article 1060 Any civil juristic act that is performed by one party of a couple due to the needs
of daily family life shall be binding on both parties thereto, unless otherwise agreed upon by the said
party and the counterparty.
The restriction on the scope of civil juristic acts that can be performed by one party between
a couple shall not challenge any bona fide other party.
Article 1061 Husband and wife shall have the right to inherit each other's property.
Article 1062 The following property acquired by the husband and the wife during the period
in which they are under contract of marriage are property in their joint possession:
1. wages, bonuses, and remuneration for labor services;
(II) proceeds of production, business operation or investment;
(III) proceeds of intellectual property rights;
(IV) property inherited or donated, except for that provided for in sub-paragraph (3) of
Article 1063 of this Law; and
(V) other property that should be in their joint possession.
Husband and wife shall have equal rights in the disposition of their common property.
Article 1063 The following property shall be deemed the personal property of one party of the
1. the property that belongs to one party before marriage;
(II) compensation or indemnity obtained by one party for a personal injury;
(III) the property to be in the possession of one party as determined by will or by an
agreement on gift;
(IV) Articles for daily use specially used by one party;
(V) other property which should be in the possession of one party.
Article 1064 Debts incurred jointly by a couple in the form of signatures by the couple,
acknowledgement by either spouse after such debt was incurred by the other spouse or other form of
expression of their common will, as well as debts incurred by either spouse in his or her own name
during the existence of the marriage relationship for the purpose of meeting the needs of the couple's
daily family life shall be deemed as jointly-incurred debts of the couple.
Any debt that is incurred by either spouse in his/her own name during the existence of the
marriage relationship beyond meeting the needs of the couple's daily family life shall not be
deemed as community debt, unless the creditor can prove that such debt is used for the couple's
life or common production or operation activities, or is incurred based on expression of the couple's common will.
Article 1065 Both the man and woman may conclude an agreement that the property acquired by them during the period in which they are under contract of marriage and the property acquired before marriage shall be in their respective possession separately or jointly or part of the property
shall be in their possession separately and the other part jointly. The agreement shall be in writing.
Where such an agreement is lacking, or the provisions in the agreement are not clear, the provisions of Articles 1062 and 1063 of this Law shall apply.
The agreement concluded by the husband and the wife with regard to the property acquired
during the period in which they are under contract of marriage and the property acquired before
marriage shall be legally binding on both parties.
Where the husband and the wife agree that the property acquired by them during the period
in which they are under contract of marriage shall be in their possession separately, debts
contracted by the husband or the wife shall be paid off with the personal property of the party of
the husband or the wife, if the other party knows that there is such an agreement.
Article 1066 During the period in which they are under contract of marriage, either of them
may make a request to the people's court for division of their jointly owned property under any of the
1. One party commits the acts that seriously harm the interests of community property,
such as hiding, transferring, selling off, destroying, or squandering community property or forging community debts; or
(II) If a person who is legally obliged to maintain one party suffers from a serious disease
and needs medical treatment, the other party does not agree to pay the relevant medical expenses.
Section 2 Parents, Children and Other Close Relatives
Article 1067 If parents fail to perform their duty, children who are minors or who are adults
and are not capable of living on their own shall have the right to demand the costs of upbringing
from their parents.
If children who have come of age fail to perform their duty, or if parents are unable to work
or have difficulty in providing for themselves, they shall have the right to demand support
payments from their children.
Article 1068 Parents shall have the right and duty to educate and protect their children who are
minors. If children who are minors cause damage to others, their parents shall bear civil liability
according to law.
Article 1069 Children shall respect their parents' right of marriage, they are not allowed to
interfere in their parents' divorce, remarriage and post-marriage life. The duty of the children to
support their parents shall not end with the change of the marriage relationship of their parents.
Article 1070 Parents and children shall have the right to inherit each other's property.
Article 1071 Children born out of wedlock shall enjoy the same rights as children born in
wedlock. No organization or individual may harm or discriminate against them.
The natural father or mother who does not directly bring up a child born out of wedlock
shall bear the costs of support for his or her minor children or adult children who are not capable
of living on their own.
Article 1072. Maltreatment and discrimination shall not be allowed between step-parents and
The provisions of this Law governing the relationship between parents and children shall
apply to the rights and duties in the relationship between step-fathers or step-mothers and their
step-children who receive care and education from them.
Article 1073 Where a paternity dispute is raised with proper reasons, the father or the mother
may bring a suit to the People's Court to claim confirmation or denial of the paternity.
Where parenthood is objected with justification, the adult child may file an action with the
people's court to request confirmation of parenthood.
Article 1074 Grandparents and maternal grandparents who can afford it shall have the duty to
bring up their grandchildren who are minors and whose parents are dead or have no means to bring
Grandchildren and maternal grandchildren who can afford it shall have the duty to support
their grandparents and maternal grandparents whose children are dead or have no means to
Article 1075 Elder brothers and elder sisters who can afford it shall have the duty to maintain
their younger brothers and sisters who are minors, if their parents are dead or have no means to bring
A brother or sister who is brought up by his or her brother or sister and can afford it shall
have the duty to maintain his or her brother or sister who lacks both the ability to work and the
source of his or her income.
第四章 离 婚
Chapter 4 Divorce
Article 1076 Where both husband and wife intend to get divorced voluntarily, they shall sign a
written divorce agreement and shall apply for divorce registration in person to the marriage
The divorce agreement shall set forth both parties' intention of voluntary divorce and
consensus on matters of children upbringing, property and debt settlement through consultation.
Article 1077 If, within 30 days after the marriage registration bureaus receive the divorce
registration applications, any of the parties does not want to get divorced, he/she may withdraw the
divorce registration applications from the marriage registration bureaus.
Within 30 days after the expiration of the above prescribed period, both parties shall in
person apply to the marriage registration bureaus for the issuance of divorce certificates; those
who fail to make the application shall be deemed to have withdrawn the application.
Article 1078 The marriage registration office, after clearly establishing that both parties desire
divorce voluntarily and have reached unanimity through consultation in matters of child rearing and
property management and the handling of debts, shall grant registration and issue the divorce
Article 1079 If one party alone desires a divorce, the organization concerned may carry out
mediation or the party may directly file a divorce suit in a People's Court.
In dealing with a divorce case, the people's court should carry out mediation; divorce shall
be granted if mediation fails because mutual affection no longer exists.
In any of the following circumstances, divorce shall be granted if mediation fails:
1. Bigamy or cohabitation with another person;
(II) where one party indulges in family violence or maltreats or abandons family members;
(III) gambling, drug taking and other bad habits do not change after repeated education;
(IV) having separated from each other for two full years for lack of mutual affection;
(V) other circumstances leading to the shattering of affection between husband and wife.
Where one party is declared to be missing and the other party starts divorce proceedings,
divorce shall be granted.
Where, after the People's Court has made a judgment that divorce shall not be granted, both parties live apart for another year and one party files a divorce suit again, divorce shall be granted.
Article 1080 Upon completion of divorce registration, or where the divorce judgment or mediation statement takes effect, the marriage shall be dissolved.
Article 1081 If the spouse of a soldier in active service desires a divorce, the matter shall be
subject to the soldier's consent, unless the soldier has made grave errors.
Article 1082 A husband may not apply for a divorce when his wife is pregnant, or is within
one year after the birth of the child, or within six months after the termination of her gestation,
except where his wife applies for a divorce, or where the people's court deems it necessary to accept
the divorce application made by the husband.
Article 1083 If, after divorce, both parties desire to resume their marriage relationship, they
shall apply for marriage registration anew with the marriage registration office.
Article 1084 The relationship between parents and children shall not come to an end with the
parents' divorce. After divorce, whether the children are directly put in the custody of the father or
the mother, they shall remain the children of both parents.
After divorce, both parents shall still have the right and duty to bring up, educate and
protect their children.
In principle, children under the age of two after divorce shall be directly put in the custody of their mother. If the parents of a child who has reached the age of two fail to reach an agreement on the matter of his or her upbringing, the People's Court shall, in accordance with the actual conditions of both parties and on the principle of benefiting the minor child to the greatest extent, make a judgment. If a child has reached the age of eight, his or her true will shall be respected.
Article 1085 If, after divorce, the children are directly put in the custody of one party, the other
party shall bear part or the whole of the fosterage expenses. The two parties shall seek agreement
regarding the amount and duration of such payment. If they fail to reach an agreement, the People's
Court shall make a judgment.
The agreement or judgment specified in the preceding paragraph shall not prevent the child
from making a reasonable request, when necessary, to either parent for an amount exceeding
what is decided upon in the said agreement or judgment.
Article 1086 After divorce, the father or the mother who does not directly bring up the child
shall have the right to visit his or her child, and the other party shall have the duty to cooperate.
The manner and time for exercising the right to visit a child shall be decided by the parties
through consultation; if they fail to reach an agreement upon in this regard, the People's Court
shall make a judgment.
Where the visit to a child paid by the father or the mother is not conducive to the physical and mental health of the child, the People's Court shall terminate such visit; after the cause of
such termination disappears, such visit shall be resumed.
Article 1087 At the time of divorce, the husband and the wife shall seek agreement regarding
the disposition of their jointly possessed property. If they fail to reach an agreement, the People's
Court shall, on the basis of the actual circumstances of the property and on the principle of taking
into consideration the rights and interests of the child, the wife and the unerring party.
The rights and interests enjoyed by the husband or the wife in contracting land management
on a household basis shall be protected in accordance with law.
Article 1088 Where one party of a couple bears comparatively more obligations for bringing up
a child, taking care of the elderly or assisting the other party in work, it shall, at the time of divorce,
have the right to request the other party to make compensation for the above, and the other party
shall do so accordingly. Specific arrangements shall be made by both parties through consultation. If
they fail to reach an agreement, the People's Court shall make a judgment.
Article 1089 At the time of divorce, the husband and the wife shall repay their common debts
jointly. Where their jointly possessed property is insufficient to pay the debts or the property is in
their separate possession, the two parties shall discuss alternative ways of payment; if they fail to
reach an agreement, the People's Court shall make a judgment.
Article 1090 If, at the time of divorce, one party has difficulty in supporting himself or herself,
the other party who can afford it shall render appropriate assistance. Specific arrangements shall be
made by both parties through consultation. If they fail to reach an agreement, the People's Court shall
make a judgment.
Article 1091 Where one of the following circumstances leads to divorce, the unerring party
shall have the right to claim compensation:
1. Bigamy; or
(II) cohabiting with another person;
(III) Domestic violence; or
(IV) maltreating or abandoning family members; or
(V) Having any other serious fault.
Article 1092 If one party of a couple conceals, transfers, sells off, destroys or squander the
property in the joint possession of the couple, or forges the debts in the joint possession of the couple
in an attempt to encroach upon the property of the other party, the former may get less or no property
when the property in the joint possession of the couple is partitioned because of divorce. After
divorce, if the other party discovers the above, it may bring a suit in the People's Court to demand repartition of the property in the joint possession of the couple.
第五章 收 养
Chapter 5 Adoption
Section 1 Establishment of Adoptive Relationship
Article 1093 The following juveniles may be adopted:
1. Orphans bereaved of parents;
(II) minors whose biological parents cannot be ascertained or found;
(III) children whose parents are unable to rear them due to unusual difficulties.
Article 1094 The individuals and institutions listed below may be entitled to place out children
1. Guardians of an orphan;
(II) Child welfare institutions;
(III) parents unable to rear their children due to unusual difficulties.
Article 1095 Where the parents of a minor do not have full capacity for civil conduct and are
likely to do serious harm to the minor, the guardian of the minor may place out the minor for adoption.
Article 1096 Where a guardian intends to place out an orphan for adoption, the guardian shall
obtain the consent of the person who has obligations to support the orphan. Where the person who
has obligations to support the orphan disagrees to place out the orphan for adoption, and the guardian
is unwilling to continue the performance of his guardianship, another guardian shall be determined
according to the provisions of Chapter I of this Law.
Article 1097 Where the parents intend to place out their child for adoption, they shall act in
concert. Where one parent cannot be ascertained or found, the other parent may place out the child
for adoption alone.
Article 1098 Adopters shall simultaneously meet all of the following requirements:
1. Having no child or only one child;
(II) capable of bringing up, educating and protecting the adoptee; and
(III) suffering no such disease as is medically regarded as unfit for adopting a child; and
(IV) Having no illegal or criminal record that is detrimental to the healthy growth of the
(V) to have reached the age of 30.
Article 1099 A person may adopt a child belonging to a collateral relative by blood of the
same generation and up to the third degree of kinship, irrespective of the restrictions specified
in sub-paragraph (3) of Article 1093, sub-paragraph (3) of Article 1094 and Article 1102 of this
An overseas Chinese, in adopting a child belonging to a collateral relative by blood of the
same generation and up to the third degree of kinship, may also be not subject to the restriction
specified in Item 1 of Article 1098 of this Law.
Article 1100 Adopters without children may adopt two children; an adopter with children may
adopt one child only, if they have only one child.
Whoever adopts an orphan, a disabled minor or a minor under the care of a child welfare
institution whose parents cannot be ascertained or found may be exempted from the restrictions
specified in the preceding paragraph and in Item (1) of Article 1098 of this Law.
Article 1101 Where a person with spouse adopts a child, the husband and wife shall adopt the
child in concert.
Article 1102 Where a person without spouse adopts a child of the opposite sex, the age
difference between the adopter and the adoptee shall be no less than 40 years.
Article 1103 A step-father or step-mother may, with the consent of the parents of the stepson or step-daughter, adopt the step-son or step-daughter, and such adoption may be free from
the restrictions specified in sub-paragraph (3) of Article 1093, sub-paragraph (3) of Article 1094,
Article 1098 and paragraph 1 of Article 1100 of this Law.
Article 1104 Adoption of a child and the placing out of the child for the adoption shall both
take place on a voluntary basis. Where the adoption involves a minor aged eight or more, the consent
of the adoptee shall be obtained.
Article 1105 The adoption shall be registered with the civil affairs department of the people's
government at or above the county level. The adoptive relationship shall be established as of the date
Where a minor whose biological parents cannot be found is adopted, the civil affairs
department in charge of registration shall make it known to the general public before registration.
If the parties involved in the adoptive relationship wish to enter into an agreement on
adoption, they may conclude such an agreement.
If the parties or one party involved in the adoptive relationship wishes that the adoption be
notarized, it shall be done accordingly.
The civil affairs departments of the people's governments at or above the county level shall
evaluate the adoption in accordance with the law.
Article 1106 After the adoptive relationship is established, the public security organ shall, in
accordance with the relevant regulations of the State, register the adoptee's residence.
Article 1107 Orphans or children whose parents are unable to rear them may be supported by
relatives or friends of their parents; the provisions of this Chapter shall not apply to the relationship
between the supporter and the supported.
Article 1108 Where a spouse places out a minor child for adoption after the death of the other
spouse, the parents of the deceased shall have the priority in rearing the child.
Article 1109 A foreigner may, in accordance with the law, adopt a child (male or female) in the
People's Republic of China.
Where a foreigner wishes to adopt a child in the People's Republic of China, the matter
shall be subject to examination and approval of the competent authorities of the country, to
which he or she belongs, in accordance with the law of that country. The adopter shall provide
papers certifying such particulars of the adopter as age, marital status, profession, property,
health and whether ever subjected to criminal punishment, which are issued by the competent
agencies of the country to which the adopter belongs. The adopter shall also sign a written agreement with the person who places out the child for adoption and register in person the deed
with the civil affairs department of the people's government of the province, autonomous region,
or municipality directly under the Central Government.
The certifying documents mentioned in the preceding paragraph shall be authenticated by
the diplomatic department of the adopter's country or of an agency authorized by the diplomatic
department and, unless otherwise provided by the State, by the embassy or consulate of the
People's Republic of China in the adopter's country.
Article 1110 When the adopter and the person placing out the child for adoption wish to make
a secret of the adoption, others shall respect their wish and shall not make a disclosure thereof.
Section 2 EFFECT OF ADOPTION
Article 111 As of the date of establishment of the adoptive relationship, the provisions of this
Law governing the relationship between parents and children shall apply to the rights and duties in
the relationship between adoptive parents and adopted children; the provisions of this Law governing
the relationship between children and close relatives of their parents shall apply to the rights and
duties in the relationship between adopted children and close relatives of the adoptive parents.
The rights and duties in the relationship between an adopted child and his or her parents and
other close relatives shall terminate with the establishment of the adoptive relationship. 第一千一百一十二条
Article 112 An adopted child may adopt his or her adoptive father's or adoptive mother's surname, and may also retain his or her original surname, if so agreed through consultation between the parties concerned.
Article 1113 Any act of adoption violating the provisions of Part One of this Law or the
provisions of Part One of this Law shall be null and void.
Invalid adoptions are not legally binding from the outset.
Section 3 Termination of Adoptive Relationship
Article 114 No adopter may terminate the adoptive relationship before the adoptee comes of
age, except when the adopter and the person having placed out the child for the adoption agree to
terminate such relationship. If the adopted child involved reaches the age of eight or more, his or her
consent shall be obtained.
Where an adopter fails to perform the duty of rearing the adoptee or commits maltreatment,
abandonment, or other acts of encroachment upon the lawful rights of the minor adopted child,
the person having placed out the child for adoption shall have the right to demand termination of
the adoptive relationship. Where the adopter and the person having placed out the child for adoption fail to reach an agreement thereon, a suit may be brought in a people's court.
Article 115 Where the relationship between the adoptive parents and an adult adopted child
deteriorates to such a degree that their living together in a same household becomes impossible, they
may terminate their adoptive relationship by agreement. In the absence of an agreement, they may
bring a suit in a People's Court.
Article 116 Where the parties agree to terminate the adoptive relationship, they shall register
the termination of the adoptive relationship with a civil affairs department.
Article 117 Upon termination of an adoptive relationship, the rights and duties in the
relationship between an adopted child and his or her adoptive parents and their close relatives shall
also terminate, and the rights and duties in the relationship between the child and his or her parents
and their close relatives shall be restored automatically. However, with respect to the restoration of
the rights and duties in the relationship between an adult adopted child and his or her parents and
their close relatives, it may be decided through consultation.
Article 118 Upon termination of an adoptive relationship, an adult adopted child who has been
reared by the adoptive parents shall provide an amount of money to support the adoptive parents who
have lost ability to work and are short of any source of income. If the adoptive relationship is
terminated on account of the maltreatment or desertion of the adoptive parents by the grown-up adopted child, the adoptive parents may demand a compensation from the adopted child for the
child-raising fees paid during the period of adoption.
If the parents of an adopted child request the termination of the adoptive relationship, the
adoptive parents may demand an appropriate compensation from the parents for the upbringing
expenses paid during the period of adoption, except if the adoptive relationship is terminated on
account of the maltreatment or desertion of the adopted child by the adoptive parents.