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China court orders man to pay wife for housework after divorce

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A court in China has ordered a man to pay thousands of dollars in compensation to his former wife for housework she shouldered during their five-year marriage, in a landmark divorce ruling that has sparked discussion in the country over the value of unpaid domestic duties.

Wang, a homemaker, demanded restitution equivalent to $24,700 (Ksh2.7 million) from her husband after he filed for divorce at a district court in Beijing in October. Wang said she was left to take care of the couple’s child and housework alone, as her husband “barely cared about or participated in any kind of domestic chores,” the state-run China National Radio (CNR) reported.

In its ruling, the court ordered the husband to pay Wang around $7,700 (Ksh845,000) as “housework compensation,” after splitting their joint property equally.

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Wang was also awarded custody of their son and $300 (Ksh32,900) per month in alimony, according to CNR.

The ruling is the first of its kind under China’s new civil code, a wide-ranging legislative package that the Chinese government and legal experts say will better protect the rights of individuals.

In effect since January, it includes a clause enabling a spouse to seek compensation from their partner during divorce for taking more responsibility in caring for children and elderly relatives.

The ruling, which was first reported by local media in early February, became a trending topic on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like service, this week after a hashtag was created to draw attention to the court’s decision. As of Wednesday, the hashtag has been viewed more than 500 million times.

 

Source: K24

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