In 2003 the Chinese government changed the divorce laws, which previously required individuals to get permission from their employers in order to get a divorce. The new law actually allowed for a ten to twenty minute divorce. That's how long the paperwork takes to fill out, as long as both parties consent to the divorce. When the new law hit the books, there a sudden surge in divorces swept the country, allowing people in long standing dysfunctional marriages to divorce more freely.
This is not uncommon, since as countries develop and become more affluent, their divorce rates also climb. In the year after the employer restrictions were dropped divorce rates skyrocketed in China. A new social phenomenon known as the flash marriage and flash divorce appeared in China. Newspapers have printed accounts of couples marrying in the morning, arguing at noon and divorcing in the afternoon.
Though a lot of attention has been given to younger couples who have been estimated to have a marriage which lasts two years on the average - older people have also taken advantage of changes in the law. Couples who had been shamed by the thought of asking for permission to divorce have now filed for divorce. According to the Chinese Civil Affairs Ministry, in 2010 almost 2 millions couples filed for divorce, while a little over a million couples got married. This week Bloomberg reported that divorces in China rose by 7.3 percent.
Note, there are still restrictions on filing for divorce. In the case of a male, he may not file for a divorce under the following conditions:
1. If his wife is pregnant;
2. Within the first six months of an abortion or miscarriage; and
3. Within the first year of his child's life.
Perhaps surprisingly from a worldwide standpoint, women have more freedom than men and may file for divorce during the above situations.
The government has looked into how to modify their divorce laws. This past August a providence in China, Zhejiang, introduced a new policy requiring couples to wait one week before getting a divorce. They believe this cooling off period will save many marriages, feeling that young couples are making the decision to divorce on impulse. In Pennsylvania, if you have been separated less than 2 years, you must wait at least 90 days from the time your spouse is served the divorce complaint before your divorce can be finalizes. If you have been separated more than 2 years, you do not have to wait the 90 days. At Cairns Law Offices, we use a special notice waiver to make divorces as fast as possible.
Once you have thought it over and decided you are ready to start your own uncontested divorce, contact Attorney James Cairns for a free consultation at 888.8636.9115.
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