More couples divorce to dodge home-buying restrictions, then remarry

Updated: 2015-07-03 07:52

By Zheng Caixiong in Guangzhou(China Daily)

  Print Mail Large Medium  Small 分享按钮 0

The growing number of couples who divorce to get around regulations and official restrictions and then remarry has pushed up the divorce rate in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, an official has revealed.

The practice is known as "false divorce" or "technical divorce".

A total of 11,584 couples divorced in the first half of the year, according to the city's bureau of civil affairs. About 30 percent of the couples later remarried, the official from the bureau said.

Some of the couples part temporarily because of restrictions on the purchase of property. A family in Guangzhou is allowed to buy only one apartment, but single adults can each buy a home.

When a couple divorces, one of them keeps the family home while the other buys a second apartment that can be rented, and the pair then remarry.

In other cases, couples divorce so they can enroll their children at a good school in the area run by their parents' neighborhood committee. They transfer their children's hukou, or household registration, to their parents' committee, since only children registered with the committee can attend the neighborhood school.

"They remarry after they have bought a new apartment or achieved other goals," said the official, who did not wish to be named. "Most of the couples were born in the 1970s and 1980s."

He would not disclose how many couples have opted for such divorces in the city over the past few years, but said the figure has been rising.

"The number of divorce cases exceeded the number of marriages in some months in 2013 when the central government issued strict policies and regulations to limit the purchase of properties by residents," he added.

Guangzhou's divorce rate is the fourth-highest among Chinese cities after Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen in Guangdong province.

Li Ningli, a professor at Guangzhou's Sun Yat-sen University, urged people to think carefully before they wed, and said husbands and wives should value their marriages.