Divorced Man Sues Stepson to Recover Money He Allegedly Spent on Him

Chinese social media was recently rocked by the controversial story of a man who sued his stepson after divorcing his mother, asking for compensation for raising him.

Only a few months after divorcing his wife, a Chongqing man surnamed Tang reportedly took his stepson Liu to court, asking for 35,200 yuan (approximately $5,285) as compensation for the money spent on raising him during the marriage. Tang reportedly married Liu’s mother in 2009 when the boy was 10 years old and helped raise him until 2021, when the woman filed for divorce. About three months after the separation, Tang filed a lawsuit against his stepson, asking for over 30,000 yuan as compensation for living expenses.

Photo: Eric Prouzet/Unsplash

The peculiar legal dispute sparked outrage among the millions who watched a video of the trial on Chinese Twitter-like platform, Sina Weibo. Most of those who commented accused Tang of taking revenge on his stepson after his marriage failed, and never really caring for him as a parent should.

“Tang started helping raise Liu once he married Liu’s mother. Now Tang wants his money back, this sounds more like a fit of pique after his marriage failed,” one person wrote.

Photo: Sora Shimazaki/Pexels

“Even after raising the kid for 10 years, it doesn’t seem like he ever treated him like a son. That’s so sad,” another person commented.

Some wondered if, by Tang’s logic, it would be reasonable for his ex-wife to demand compensation for the psychological suffering she probably endured during their marriage.

Luckily, last month, a local court in Chongqing denied Tang’s request, ruling that the expenses he was seeking compensation for had been paid voluntarily.

“Tang chose to support Liu, despite knowing he didn’t have a legal responsibility to pay for his university study as Liu had reached 18 years of age,” the presiding court judge said. “In China, children are legally adults once 18, and parents are no longer expected to cover their living expenses.”

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