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Breaking Contract


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Assuming someone signs a teaching contract for 6 months to a year and a few months in decides to leave, what are the typical reprocussions? I understand that many schools will offer bonuses or flight allowance on completion, is that typically the only issue with leaving early?



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In most cases, if you break your contract you won't get your bonus. The bonus is an incentive to finish the contract.


Other consequences, depending on the reach of the school, can include:


1. Immediate revocation of working documents.

2. "Blacklisting," which includes a note in your electronic file that you're unreliable, to which other schools have access.


In reality, the aforementioned consequences aren't life-altering, especially if you do not intend to teach in China again. Additionally, it's a small price to pay if you end up being very unhappy with your employer.


If you're currently researching schools in China, do yourself a huge favor and do your due diligence in researching the institution. Ask to speak with current and former employees, ask questions about the contract, ask for pictures (of the school, apartments provided, etc.), and look for reviews online (which must be taken with a grain of salt).


Good luck!

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If you plan to teach again elsewhere in China it may be quite difficult without a "letter of release" from the previous school. In Hainan this is required for a successful application for a new work visa, regardless of the length of time that has elapsed since the previous contract's conclusion. I have heard of this requirement elsewhere as well, but don't have experience in other provinces.

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