We recommend that the present position be preserved

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We recommend that the present position be preserved as regards concubinage. As section 2(2) will be repealed if our recommendation on Schedule 1 is accepted, we recommend provision be inserted in Schedule 1 to the effect that all children of a male partner of a union of concubinage whether begotten of the wife or any tsip of the male partner shall form a common family for the purposes of the Ordinance. All such children shall accordingly be deemed children of the wife and every such tsip (see clause 11 of the Bill). 11.6 Upon the death of the children of a man by his wife, and his concubines, only the natural father and mother are presently regarded as parents of the deceased. We recommend that no change be made concerning this. 11.7 Catering for the institution of concubinage complicates this area of the law but the position can be summarised as follows: the adoption of the above recommendations will have the result that for the purposes of succession to the estates of a man, his wife and concubines, all the children 55
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of the man by his wife and concubines are regarded as the children of the man, his wife and each of the concubines. This will mean that the children will benefit on the intestacy of any of those people, but not vice versa. On the death of one of the children, only his natural parents will benefit as parents, but all of the other children will benefit as brothers and sisters of the whole blood. Concubines and siblings 11.8 This is discussed in paragraphs 10.5 – 10.7. 56
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Chapter 12 Intestate succession: Miscellaneous matters __________________________________________________________ New Territories land Chinese customary law 12.1 The Intestates' Estates Ordinance replaced the old rules of devolution on intestacy, except in respect of land in the New Territories that has not been exempted from Part II of the New Territories Ordinance. The Chinese customary, or Tsing, law (in addition to the Statutes of Distribution) is therefore preserved in respect of such land. 12.2 The Chinese customary law was essentially aimed at keeping the family property in the male line; descent was seldom through the female line. If there was no son of the deceased, the widow was under an obligation to adopt a son to have the same surname and to maintain the male line. The widow's beneficial rights were confined to maintenance during her lifetime and would cease on her remarriage. The sons were also entitled to maintenance, but daughters were entitled to maintenance only until marriage, whereupon they were entitled to a dowry. 12.3 It was the practice in the New Territories to settle a deceased's property in such a way as to provide maintenance and support for the male descendants for the time being of a common ancestor, as well as to provide a fund for the worship of that common ancestor. These family landholdings are generally called tso or tong .
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