Hong Kong Land Registry’s searches can be done online for a fee; registry documents list present and past owners, transaction details (sale of property and price); mortgage details (bank name, amount).


State Administration for Industry and Commerce lists registered companies (Chinese website only). The registry is incomplete, but contains links to other branches of SAIC around the country.

Stock exchanges in Shanghai and Shenzhen provide information on listed companies, annual reports, and other filings available on the Chinese-language version of the exchanges’ sites.

Websites of local courts and lawyers’ associations

Beijing court system

Beijing Lawyers’ Association

Dalian court system

Dalian Lawyers’ Association

Zhengzhou court system

Zhengzhou Lawyers’ Association

Sheila S. Coronel is director of the Stabile Center for Investigative Journalism at Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism. She writes about global investigative reporting at http://watchdog-watcher.com.