Common Contract Disputes in China And How To Avoid Them

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China has emerged as a significant worldwide commerce and business hub. Numerous businesses have struck ties with Chinese firms. Contract issues can arise in China, just like in any other nation. This might result in financial losses, legal problems, and strained relationships.

Knowing the most common contract disputes in China and how to resolve them is critical for any company doing business with Chinese enterprises.

We will look at some of the most common contract issues in China and provide solutions. Companies can more easily ensure the success and productivity of their commercial transactions in China by identifying and addressing potential risks.


Common Contract Disputes In China

Contract conflicts can emerge in a variety of businesses and sectors in China. Nonetheless, there are numerous prevalent forms of contract conflicts in China:

  1. Payment disagreements, such as the amount, scheduling, or payment method, are widespread in China. This may involve nonpayment, late payment, or disputes about payment arrangements.
  2. Contracts involving intellectual property, such as licensing agreements, can result in disagreements about who owns, uses, or infringes on intellectual property rights.
  3. A breach of a contract in China happens when one party fails to fulfill its contractual obligations. For example, if a party fails to provide products or services as promised or if the quality of the given goods or services falls short of the acceptable standard, this might result in a breach of contract.
  4. Unanticipated occurrences or circumstances beyond either party’s control make the performance of the contract duties impossible. For example, a pandemic or natural catastrophe outbreak may render it difficult for a party to carry out its contractual obligations.
  5. Disputes over contract termination can emerge in China when one party tries to cancel the agreement before the end of the specified term or when there is a disagreement over the legitimacy of the stop.

These are only a few examples of regular contract disputes in China.


How to prevent contract disputes in China

To avoid risks in a contract in China, there are some steps you can take:

  1. If the contract is written in a language other than Chinese, it is critical that the translation to Chinese is correct and represents the contract’s original meaning. Remember that if the agreement is not translated into Chinese, it is normal for the Chinese court to translate it. Misunderstandings and disagreements can result from translation problems. It is best to have a confirmed Chinese version to avoid translation problems. If you have a multilingual agreement, you must specify the governing language.
  2. It’s essential to seek legal advice before entering into a contract in China to ensure the terms are enforceable and comply with Chinese contract law. An experienced lawyer specializing in Chinese law can help to identify potential risks and suggest ways to mitigate them.
  3. The contract should clearly define the rights and obligations of each party, as well as the scope of the project or transaction. This can help to prevent misunderstandings and disputes.
  4. Before entering into a contract with a Chinese party, conducting due diligence on the other party is essential. This can include researching their reputation, financial stability, and legal compliance.
  5. The contract should include dispute resolution mechanisms, such as arbitration or mediation, to provide a framework for resolving possible disputes.
  6. Force majeure clauses can help allocate the risk of unexpected events or circumstances beyond either party’s control. These clauses should be carefully drafted to ensure they are enforceable and covered.

By following these steps, you can avoid common risks in a contract, ensure the contract is enforceable and set up a framework for a successful business transaction or project.



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If you require our assistance or have further questions about our services, please do not hesitate to contact our Customer Relationship Manager, Jan Erik Christensen, at We look forward to hearing from you and helping your business succeed in China.