Yu Di


This Note discusses the controversial August 2011 Judicial Interpretation on the Marriage Law of China concerning the treatment of marital residence in divorce proceedings. The Interpretation gives great weight to the title under which the property is held, and commentators have criticized this approach as unfair to women. This Note examines the Interpretation from a historical and comparative viewpoint. Section I traces the development history of Chinese law of marital property. Section II summarizes the U.S. law on the most prominent scenario addressed by the new Interpretation, that of the distribution at divorce of a marital residence to the acquisition of which the parents of one party have contributed financially. Finally, Section III argues that while the Interpretation may represent a natural and reasonable development in Chinese law, a fact-based case-by-case approach is a more equitable way to address the problem of division of marital residence.