Simon Says: Does a Divorce Agreement work in China?

This is the twentieth in a weekly series of legal advice provided in a short and entertaining story format.


Keywords: Divorce Agreement, Creditor, Co-defendants



Does a Divorce Agreement work in China?


Jack and Jill were couple with a teenage son Alex, who was studying overseas.


Recently, Jack lost a great amount of money due to gambling. He started drinking every night and beating his wife up. He also quit his job and all he did was try to gamble his money back, without success.


Jill decided to divorce him after half a year, and Jill agreed on paying off Alex’s high school study loans as she had a stable job. In return, Alex would be under her custody.


However, Jill also encountered some financial problems not much long after and a creditor started knocking on their old home, where Jack resided. A half-naked, still-drunk Jack greeted them. 

“What do you want?” Jack asked.
“Pay up the loan. You haven’t paid your installment this month.” The creditor replied.
“What loan? Gambling loan? Ain’t got money. Go away!” Jack blew smoke into the guy’s face.
“Your son’s study loan signed by you and your wife.” Was the reply.
“Go find Jill, she agreed to pay for it. You want money, and you have to step over my dead body to take it.” Jack grunted and slammed the door shut.


Can the creditor go to court and sue Jack and Jill as co-defendants in this case?



Prof Simon Says:


Yes, the court will allow both Jack and Jill to be named as co-defendants.


Taking care of the child is a responsibility for the both of them, and they both signed the loan before the divorce. Even though Jill verbally agreed to pay for the installments, it was not written on divorce contract, and the court will allow both of them to be named as co-defendants.


Therefore, Jack should start quit his drinking and find a job to pay off the study loan.


Simon Says - Episode 20: Does a Divorce Agreement work in China?



For more about this or to contact Professor Simon Choi at, +86 13823677853 or by WeChat: simonhkchoi. 


ACME Ardent's Simon Choi WeChat QR Code


"This article was originally written in Chinese by Mr Huanyu Li and rewritten into English by Simon Choi."


Simon Choi

About the Author: Professor Simon Choi

Prof Simon Choi, solicitor and linguist, is an international lawyer, qualified to practise law in England & Wales and in Hong Kong, China. Simon graduated from law schools of the Peking University, the University of London and the University of Hong Kong respectively, with an in-depth knowledge of Chinese laws and common laws and with more than 20 years experience in China practice and international trade, investment, finance, merger & acquisition. He is an adjunct professor of laws at the Zhongnan University of Economics and Law. Simon is the founding partner of Acme Ardent and can be reached at or +86 13823677853.

Be the first to review this item!

Bookmark this

12 Jul 2017

By Simon Choi

Events Calendar