China / Society

E China launches 'trial divorce' to save marriages

(ECNS) Updated: 2014-09-17 16:33

A 'trial divorce' service has been launched in East China's Jiangxi province to help young couples to solve marital crisis.

"Trial divorce" means that when both husband and wife decide to divorce, they do not legally act, but just "separate" for a period of time.

Several post-80s couples in eastern China's Jiangxi province have resorted to "trial divorce" before they officially end their marriages, said.

Tong Xin, a marriage guidance counselor, has launched such services in several regions of the province, including Jiujiang city and the capital Nanchang.

"Many cases of divorce were driven by impulse," Tong said, "'trial divorce' gives the two sides a chance to calm down and reflect on their marriage."

The "trial divorce" service requires husband and wife to sign an agreement that includes settlements on assets division and child custody.

Then they begin to live under "simulated" divorce conditions during the period, which lasts three months to half a year.

Chen Yang, a post-80s man, opted for this trial alongside his wife who he married after only knowing her a month. They have had many disputes, "But I do want to save my marriage," he said.

Although not a large number of couples have chosen the "trial divorce," a large portion has reconciled, according to Tong.

Dai Qingfeng, Deputy Head of Sociology Institute at the Nanchang Social Science Academy, said the "'Trial divorce" may resolve a marital crisis, and avoid a hard landing for a problematic marriage.

China saw 3.5 million couples divorce in 2013, up 12.8 percent from the previous year, according to the country's Ministry of Civil Affairs.

The divorce rate roughly stood at 0.26 percent, rising 0.03 percentage points year on year, ministry statistics indicate.

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