A new judicial interpretation dealing with contracts that was issued by China's top court took effect on Tuesday to ensure compliance with the country's first Civil Code.
The code, regarded as an encyclopedia of social activities and a key legal instrument to protect people's civil rights, was adopted in May 2020 and came into effect in January 2021.
The 1,260-article code consists of general provisions, which clarify basic civil rights, duties and principles, and six sections on property, contracts, personality rights, marriage and family, inheritance, and torts.
It is the first law called a code since the People's Republic of China was founded in 1949, and also milestone legislation in comprehensively advancing rule of law and promoting the socialist system of laws with Chinese characteristics.
In June 2020, the Supreme People's Court began reviewing 591 existing judicial interpretations to check whether they were consistent with the code.
After the review, the top court abolished 116 interpretations, including two on contracts, and revised 111 others.
To ensure the smooth continuation of contract-related activities and solve new problems in the area, the top court quickly started new research nationwide, holding seminars with law academies and visiting various cities, such as Shanghai, Chengdu, Nantong and Shenzhen, to conduct surveys.
In November 2022, the draft judicial interpretation on contracts received more than 2,000 suggestions and opinions from the public, it said.
"After absorbing some of the public ideas, we updated the draft, and then discussed it with the Legislative Affairs Commission of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, the country's top legislature, to further improve the draft," it said.
The final version of the interpretation was passed recently by the top court.
In December 2020, the top court issued seven judicial interpretations related to the code, including ones on property, marriage and family, labor disputes, and inheritance, to help judges apply the code accurately and solve urgent problems in people's lives effectively.
One of those interpretations, which focused on marriage and the family, identified frequent or constant domestic violence as abuse, meaning victims have the right to demand civil compensation from perpetrators.