Earlier this month, a high court in eastern China accepted a couple’s appeal against a fine they received for having a second child, Sixth Tone’s sister publication The Paper reported Tuesday. The case will test whether the two-child policy can apply retroactively for those who have unpaid family planning fines.
The couple had their first child, a girl, in 2008, and then a son in June 2012, when the one-child policy still applied. But no one mentioned a fine until May 2016 — five months after the two-child policy came into effect nationwide. Then, the local health and family planning commission in their hometown of Suining County, Jiangsu province, told them they owed 104,584 yuan ($15,800) for having a second child, who was by then 4 years old.
“Since the two-child policy is now being promoted across the country, why do we still have to pay the fine?” Tong Gang, the 34-year-old father, told Sixth Tone on Wednesday.