China orders children to visit aged parents

China Featured - January 1st, 2013

Chinese officials have ordered adult children to visit and take care of their elderly parents “often” otherwise risk being taken to court by them under an amendment to China’s law on the elderly.

Chinese legislature added a new clause on Friday allowing elderly parents who feel neglected by their children to sue them amid increasing incidences of abandoned and ignored aged parents, according to state media.

There are reports of elderly parents being neglected or children seeking control of their parents’ assets without their knowledge. Earlier this month, a son forced his 90-year old mother to live in a pig pen for two years, state media reports.

The amendment does not specify how frequently children should visit their elderly parents, says the AP.

This comes as a rapidly rising China is facing difficulty in caring for its expanding elderly population – pushed by an increase in life expectancy and one-child policies that limit most families.

A rapidly ageing population also poses threats to the country’s social and economic stability as the growing number of elderly disproportionately shrinks the working population.